discussed very freely and at great length
with this poor man Peters, who was
terribly upset and disturbed at these
unfortunate newspaper articles, all of the
circumstances about it, and what might
he do, and things of that sort. This may
have been among them. I suppose it
was. and I don't mean to evade it and
I just really don't remember that specific
Mr. Tavenner: Well, did they go to
Dr. J. Robert Oppenheimer, to your
Dr. Condon: I don't know. 1 suspect
so, but I don't know.
Mr. Tavenner: Did you take J.
Robert Oppenheimer to task for his
alleged testimony before the Committee
on I n-Anii-ri.au Activities?
Dr. Condon: Yes, I wrote him a very
Mr. Tavenner: Did you charge Dr.
J. Robert Oppenheimer with endeavoring to involve other people in an effort
to obtain immunity for himself?
Dr. Condon: I am not sure. I don't
have a copy of that letter.
Mr. Tavenner: Will, that is a verj
serious charge to make against a person,
and you say that you wrote him a very
Dr. Condon: That is right.
Mr. Tavenner: Can't you recall that
you did make such a charge?
Dr. Ciiniicin: 1 wouldn't want to say
that I made it unequivocally. I may have
said something substantially that, and
I was very angry at that time, and I am
still quite angry about it.
Mr. Tavenner: Well, what had occurred to your knowledge, if anything,
which in your judgment would constitute a reason why Dr. J. Robert Oppenheimer should seek immunity by telling
something that was untrue about some-
one else, or something that was true
about some other person?
Dr. Condon: What do you mean?
Such immunity could be immunity just
from harassment and annoyance without any foundation such as in my own
case, and there is no basis for any of
the annoyance that I have been put
Mu. Tavenner: I am asking you
about Dr. J. Robert Oppenheimer, and
w.e- there anything that Dr. J. Robert
Oppenheimer had done lo your knowledge which would constitute a reason
why he should seek immunity?
Dr. Condon : No.
Mr. Moulder: May I interpose mir
question in connection with Mr. Jackson's interrogation a few moments ago.
I am sure that he and I are in complete
agreement that when some persons who
refuse to answer a question as to
whether or not they are or ever have
been Communists, there is a strong
inference that Ihey have been, and arc.
Now, that inference, if you understood
that, would that be your reaction?
Dr. Condon: I don't want to discuss
individuals other than myself, because
in fact I don't know other than the
hearsay, but the kind of distinction I
have in mind which I think is applicable
in some instances is that we all know
that there are the really dedicated Communists who are really very dangerous,
and with them 1 have no sympathy whatever, and we also know that there are
young men who in their college days
made short periods of a month or a
few months casual membership and got
over the thing quickly and in many
cases as long as ten or fifteen years
ago, and I think it is very unfair to
bring their name up in a derogatory way
jus| because they did belong.
USE CONSTITUTIONAL SHIELD
Mu. Mi.l l.Dl k: Diin'l veeu believe,
though, Dr. Condon, that they would
leave a better impression if they would
answer the questions straightforwardly
and then make the explanation thai you
have mail" there, in their defense, rather
than to shield themselves behind the
provisions of the Constitution, leaving
the strong inference thai Mr. Jackson
Dr. Condon: Yes, it could well be
that they are ill-advised in taking that
protection, but if they do I didn't advise any of them on that.
Mu. Tavenner: Doctor, you emphasize ihe situation where young boys at
college might for a very short period
of lime have joined the parly. None of
these scientists were young college boys.
These scientists wen- engaged in one of
the most serious pieces of business in
which ibis country has ever been engaged. And as a part of the testimony
regarding their activities, meetings were
held with Steve Nelson, the head of the
Communisl party of Alameda County.
Calif., anil I lliink I need not tell you
anything about tin- record of Steve
Dr. Condon: I only know ii from the
Well. I hail always had a good deal
of confidence in General Groves' security program, and these nun were and
continued lo be cleared and operating
on ihe project during the entire time of
Mu. Tavenner: Do you know as a
matter of fact thai it was very carefull)
planned lo induct several of these people
into Ihe Inited States Army, to get them
off to Alaska and other places, where
they could do no harm, and where they
could be observed, and do you not know-
that some of them were given inconsequential positions which would minimize the danger of leakage of informa
tion which they had already obtia (
as part of the security to protect ',,
country against that cell that had • |.
organized within the laboratory s
Dr. Condon: I am afraid I 'duty
carry all of that question in my I" I)
and it contained many assertions. v;rtt
assertions, that we haven't agreed tj and
the ti'stimony. worl
Mr. Tavenner: You might not » ''ha'
as to the truthfulness of thai testiro- anw
but that is the testimony. *
Dr. Condon: Bui what is iIn' <T**.llfi
Mr. Tavenner: 1 didn't ask y* y
question. I am asking you if you ^erf
arguing that these were just school^ ]jsl(,
Dr. Condon: No, I wasn't argt hue
thai these were schoolboys. 1 said 1* "
ing of the kind, and I gave the "* ' ,T1
I."is of the committee a hvpotl"' *
example of an instance in whK* n,'<
wouldn't hold it against a man if he '
thai in his record, and hoped tl"' '
could live il el
ing about it.
own by just saying
Mr. Tavenner: I don't intend ' j
make any wrong inferences from ,.nn
testimony, but when you talk " Seie
schoolboys being involved, it is so j-
from the situation here that the pro" wn)
you arc posing would have' no l,e^ like-
on it. |H,
Now did you also take Dr. Off «
heimer further to task lev telling any
thai il was his duty to write at ( inv
to the president of the University ]
Rochester and advise him that lha
Peters was all rigbl? sibi
Dr. Condon: Thai may ban befl
eluded in that letter. I don't rerflfl
lie exact details. ".
Mu. Tavenner: Did you also de* ;
Ileal if Dr. Piters lost his position ' y0l
I nivcisily of Rochester as a res"* |
Dr. Oppeiibeiiner's alleged testis nai
before this committee, it was his" Wl
obligation lee offer Dr. Peters a |'""
on the slaff of ihe- Institute for ]),
\ciin i'<l Siudy? vol
Dr. Condon: I may have said"ilr<
ibis was a personal—
Mr. Tavenner: When is that '
Dr. Condon: At Princeton. N-J-'Jlic
lhat was a personal leller l""1 pec
friends, and we are slill friends.
Mu. Tavenner: Did you make'"
independent investigations or iiiep"'' '"
your own pari regarding Dr. I'ejT ..
Peters before taking Dr. <>PP',"h)3">!
to task for his alleged testimoi
CLEARED FOR SECRET WORK
Dr. Condon: No, as I say. Dr.','
was one of those that was clear'1
secrel work throughout the enli'1' |,
FACTS FORUM NEWS, J„,n,