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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/AA00012811/00001
 Material Information
Title: My relations with the Caribbean Commission, 1943-1955
Physical Description: 51 p. ;21 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Williams, Eric Eustace
 Notes
General Note: "A public lecture given under the auspices of the People's Educational Movement of the Teachers Economic and Cultural Association in Woodford Square - Port-of-Spain, Trinidad, June 21st, 1955, and repeated under the auspices of the Caribbean Women National Assembly, Harris Promenade - San Fernando, Trinidad, June 28th, 1955."
 Record Information
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: UF Latin American Collections
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 22613855
oclc - 11110441
System ID: AA00012811:00001

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Full Text










I stand before you tonight, and, therefore, before the- :
people of the British West Indies, the representative of t.
a principle, a cause, and a defeat. The principle' is the "
principle of intellectual freedom. The cause is the cause
of the West Indian people. The defeat is the defeat of-
the policy of appointing lo'al men to high office.

I joined the Anglo-American Caribbean Commission,
the predecessor of the present Caribbean Commission, in
March 1943, one year after its establishment by' the
British and United States governments. I was then
Assistant Professor of Social and Political Science at
SHoward University in Washington, D.C., the headquarters `.
of the Commission. I was also the author of a-book entitled
The Negro in the Caribbean, a copy of-which I presented -
to the British official who interviewed me for a post with
the Commis.ion in November 1942. My second book, .
Capitalism and Slavery, was published two years later, .:
in 1944, :

'. -My initial appointment was a very modest one-work
as'a consultant for one afternoon a fortuight, collating the :
prices of essential foodstuffs and bringing up to date the
laws of the territories. I therefore retained my j-jib.at the '
univesity,- and insisted that I must be free to continue my
Lectures and writings, as such activities., were rated very .'.
highly among the criteria for promotion at the University. ,:;
Both the British and the United- States governments .
...agreed to this. -A year later, with 'the University's.;';
A. approval' 'and the necessary leave of absence, 1 accepted aj":
fill time appointment on the Commission's staff to work-:
. wit;b th.e,Reseurch 'Council,.my salary beiug .ptid joiotly<]
'by the Britislh Coloyrial.-Office and the State D.epartwmenth'
.,: of. the United States. .My freedom to .continue y i,6 .
-w.ritiigs -and speeches was again acknowledged.. The .per~ .
mission was in fact extended- to the West',rinties, subject,;
io t'e condition that I should submit an advance copir
S.,of. my lectures -to the Colouial. -Secretary fi the 'Bri.tqei:-
:-,Wet Indian areas. ,. -

-. : '. .. n. w,-:' 4. . . ." . "
. . .. . .







obtained permission from the publishers and from myself to.
bring out a separate edition in England. 1 bad not then-
joined the Commission's staff, but owing to the paper
shortage the publication was delayed until at' the end. of
1944, I learned that it was due to appear. I promptly
reported the matter to both Sectiuns of the Commission,
explained the circumstances, ;nd made it quite clear that
the English publishers were 'a radical, anti-imperialist group
with which 1 was not affiliated. My British superior officer,
whom 1 had given a personal copy of the book, asked me
to put my statement in writing for the Colonial Office, s.o
that, as be put it, it would not be taken by surprise and'
lose confidence in me. I did so. My United States superior
officer, who was very familiar with the book and who
knew how widely it bad circulated in the United States',
and especially the State Department, advised me that the.
thing above all which I was not to do was to attempt to..
prevent publication. The English edition was published.
in 19415 and was soon selling widely in the British West
Indies.

About the middle of 1945 the Commission began.to'
give consideration to the transfer of its headquarters to
the West Indies The Bri.ish government had also-
appointed a commission to consider the question of a"
West'Indian University. I had for years been preparing
myself for precisely snob a development, and, as I had be-
come very genuinely interested in the Commission and itA
work in the field of Caribbean cooperation, which I had
independently recommended in The Negr. in .the.Caribbeai,'
I seriously considered resignation froi Howard University','
and removal to the West Indies with the Comamissiou
pending the establishment of the West Indian University._,
Just at this time, however, Howarl University declined t&:
renew my leave of absence for another year and iuvited.. i
to return to take one of ten professorships- being create.
that year. No teacher as young as I could tuke.lightly suci.
a recognition of his work expressed in a jum.pfrom Assista'6d
Professor to Professor, bypassing the intermediate. grad.
of Associate Professor, within six years.of his first appQlin'
!Iment. I thought that it might be more strategic',to trait.gi'
.'4to the Vest Indianri .U:oive~sity from 'a. .iJJtiid "'Ira
.,. ,professorship thai from: a resea .,i t_,4.d.




3

Before making up my mind, I decided to coinult my.
British superior officer who was "then stationed in the
West Indies. In repiy to my letter he sent a telegram to
the Colonial Office, dated June 18, 1945, asking for in-
structions. A copy of the telegram was given to me. It
stated that he hoped to retain my services indefinitely in
connection with the research work uf the Commission, but
that security of tenure or 'a position in the West 'Indian
University -could not be guaranteed to me. In the
meantime he asked me to defer a decision until 1he visited
Washington' in the following month, and negotiations
about my salary were begun.

I was in no hurry. I waited, confident, with- no
thought of danger, secure in the phenomenal success of
Capitalism and Slavery. One of the most distinguished'
of modern United States historians had reviewed the book
is. the New York Herald Tribune of February 4, 1945.
After describing it's "this learned and illuminating mono-
graph," he had concluded with the following paragraph:
S" Mr. Williams'! monograph is one of the most
learned, most genetratiug and most significant
that has'appeared ui this field of history. It
would be cauge for gratification if he would
'turn his attention to the economics of American-
abolitionism."

I had drawn the review to the attention of my superior
officer. .He had expressed the. hope to me that my hat
would.. not get too small for my head as' a result of the
adjectives used by the reviewer. I had assured him that I
never wore a .ht. '

On May 26, 1945, av. eveiw more. famous,' journal, '
Britain's Times Literary.. Suprplmerenf, had ended a. long o
review of the book wit t his', sentence: -'this.is an ad-
,mirably written, argued and original piece of work" Reviews
Sii this journal are never sigied.f" But I learned -privately...:
-that ,ty book had been reviewed by ofe. of Britain's":
greatest contemporary scholars- [ had sent a copy to my -
Ssupeaior': officer, who had specificaJly'Pasked me to. show :m-
',f.im ..copies of o ll '.reviews' so tha,1 he coul, forwiid them .M
t& ~gB flohw6 -Of fije0.& -C-' ~- -
".- ." . ...'r. ru .
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The reception ol the book in official .oieles had. been
no less gratifying. I -bad had ai copy 'sent-to the Secre 4tay
of State for the Colonies, Colonel Stanley, a direct descen-
dant of the author of the British act emancipating ihe
slaves, and another to one of the highest raking Colonrial
Office officials. I had met both of them in Washingto'du,
Colonel Stanley had written to me thanking ,ue for. he
book; -he said that he had read it with the.grea.st interest
and regarded. it as a valuable addition to his Jibray. T'e.&
Colonial Office -fficial had complimented .ue on my most
admirable presentation of wha; was to him a'new approaheb
Sto the question,, stated how really mipressed 'he was with the
r astsrly fashion in which I had marshalled authorities col-'
lected from so wide a range, ;both in time abd place, and
concluded that. even though he would personally have given.
-the humanitarians rather more credit than I did, my book.
certainly did much to convince him that I was putting.
the matter in truer perspective thag he had hitherto
seen it.

Financially, too, the book had exceeded all .x-
pectations. First published in Novenbher 1944, "by June..,
1'95 all 1,500 copies had been sold, the subsidy insisted
, on by the publishers repaid, and a -second printing of
1,500 copies begun.

Thus, when I was called in to mny-s superior officer ori
July 24, 1945, shortly after his arrival in Washingto', 4I
was totally unprepared for an -attack and the epsning?,
bitter struggle for intellectual freedom.

The cause of the war was The Negro in t ea COariblean.
.The enemy was the sugar planters of Au.tigua with my:"
i superior officer as their standard bearer.

sa After'a few plea.a4,tries, 4oy .sepe-rior q~ijoer, whov.,. I
.shall c Mr. X, abrupt-ly changed the subject from theb'
discussion of the. Howar4 offer wh I;ih I had iwaAted. noi
time, i introducing. Let me. read -here from miy peusorfii8
i record of this cooversatoibn, wri-tten u.p:, imwedatey aLter.

Quite-suddenly, be spoke -o, 'eeoho.qe' L |
.. .jgraiir th. e !CMbbeans, e- reaI:. a ,1,
;: I;. he h"& received, o refu..B ',",
~:s atfi r;







.book, but quoted the passage about government
of sugars for sugar, by sugar', and called the book
'propagandist'. I- was nonchalant. I told him I
had seen. a hostile review in The Antiqua Star
and another'in the West India Committe6 Cir.,
cular, both papers of the planters. I took- the
opportunity to em'phasise chat I stood by every-'
-thing I had written, -that the planters'- attitude ."
did .not -surprise' me, that I was not in the least
S bothered by it, and that' I was not impressed by
planters' standards of research or 'definitions of/.
sociology. -
He said it was all right, they knew the English
edition. was coming' obt, etc., it was a pity the
book was not objective, there were other points
Sof view'on sugar, etc., etc., and there was noth-"
ing to worry abbut 'unless things got worse.' 'I
asked him what he meant. He said: "if that sort.-
S of'oritioism got around and I became the subject
V of general controversy.'
S- -then asked him point, blank what, in- his i
o pioion, 'looking at the matter in its worst light',,_.
as he had phrased it, would or oeald be. the.
Result? He replied, after, a little hesitation': 'I
-would want to.-ask you to resign, but 'I cobld:s
not.do anything because, of your 18 months',
,ontiract.' -
S' We finally iigreed that. be would disesns theu
-: whole matter with the United States 'Section2 ,
". "" He said that if I bad the, Commiasion bebidd,
.i, it -was ok,
My imptessidns are as foI'owe-:--
. .. : . . .-.., .. : ..
S1 M. B I X-isbea to'.for"eJ' 1 out."1 l k thilthi
is l. on~detMd" with the' fiat that IanI ms'isingi
e : a well-paid job oni a tigh.i exe t-te'leel
2-ledaeiifl we. t d e
.... .... *'- -, ..'entwa e tMe i We.e'ai

ep 'b i A,
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him or me.


4. He was clearly quite nonplussed by my com-
bination of nonchalance to the criticisms and
firmness on the-basic issue.

5. He was most uncomfortable throughout as
was clear from his great efforts to prove to
me from newspaper articles, etc., how the;
situation with regard to sugar had changed,
and how there could be no possible abandon-
ment of sugar.

6. Here and there I seemed. to see a broad hint:
that I should.recant, with the alternative of
the stake....."

The discussion was continued two days later at an
official cocktail party, in an atmosphere charged with ten-
sion-the British Labour Party had just won the 1945
election. I learned that my future. had that afternoon.
been discussed by the Commission for an hour# and a.
half, and that the United States Section, which had at.
first suggested that the Commission should stick by'me,
laer-decided that I might be happier at.Howard. Mr. X
tried to make me admit that, if the HoWard offer had
been made two years before, I probably would never have
joined the Commission. I. dissented vigorously, where'.
upon he called me "'stiffnecked". He said that if I talked
to some 'reasonable' sugar planters, I might probably
have.different opinions.

Another brief and inconclusive discussion followed'
on the next day, and it was agreed to postpone: the issue:
until the following week. I went immediately to the.
S President of Howard University, explained the oircum-:.
stances to. him, and stressed that if I returned to-theb
SUniversity that year, the impression would Ibeleft .that I'
': had turned tail and run away. The President agreed with
me, assured me that he was 100% behind me, andi
i.:authorised .leave of absence for another year. With .y:
:' -:baEck door thus fortified,: I wrote. Mr.. Xa long lette::r
dated July 28, 1945. -. . ,:..... -
.. .. . , .:. ,,, :,, .., ... ,: ... ... .. ; : .. ,,,. .. .. :






I dealt fully-with tb.- blackfround(ot thle book and
the., appearance of ,b' English edition, reminded him of
his telegram to the Colonial Office a month earlier, and
infqrmed him that 1 was uu;ble to reconcile the freedom
of- speech and expression given to me in 191-5 as a member
of the Commission's staff ibth retrospective criticism df
what 1 had written in 1942 before I joined the Com-
mission's staff, My letter continued as follows:

'"The only reason that you give for your present
attitude is a letter which presumably represents
the -hostility 'of vested interests to my writings.
The representative of those interests whom you
bring to my attention has not even read the
book. You will paidon me if I draw the only
conclusion Which you leave open to 'ue. It is that
.in June my work was in every.. ay satisfactory, of,
to put it as modertpl'y as possible, I was rendering
S satisfactory'service to an organisation as.important
S politically as the Anglo-American Caribbeau
Commission. In July, however, as a result of
pressure, unofficial, anonymous, and, if you will
allow me, with no visible basis either for criticism
or positive statement, at the first hint of'this I
S become a liability and-am asked not only by. you,....
but, according to- your statement, by'the entire
. Commission, to consider retirement-:from the work
St which -I have given,, as far as was, possible,'
devoted. service.

.1, for my part, would have'expected from you :
and I am certain that any 'ther- subordinate, in
a, department .would expect, not a request which
virtually amounts to pressure if. my opinion
S:" .-absolutely: unwarranted, buit a vigorous defernce :.
S of my -rights, as a satisfactory servant of, the
:'.:.' 'Commission. 1I would remind you"; that the
p. onions I have expressed :of. the -vested. interests:'.
..in the Weis' diess a have' been ..expressed .in
;' various. forms by., govrnment comtnmision after :
.'. ..oomaission. : t .iflargely upon :itheeopi ions Of.
. ese. po-missions ..t'bhar I have i .ased. e idea
*: :.. -..t*h;i. at I-:'. now:hobld. .of'1 the ,'ptst, re. se,:t and,, fupreta
W.t.h .". .. :' v y '.- .:""b... e:
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S Ua Ia U U IL5' U V- L I C LA U LU.A5U ULAL. US^Lj fl, 1,LJ jl.OirC<
, has b-~n in the direction nf rhe strengtebi-g- pi,'f
the freedom of opinion' nud fre6p'dicihlsion so fgsoioS
-develop the masses of. ihe.. people. iT' che, pracibetU
of democracy and to enable th-em to epre:
-their views, and if possible ibipleuwent t-bm'i
against the wishes of many ot these very vested:.
interests. There is not a single. person i theV):
West Indies who does not, for instance, interpret-
the constitution that.has beue granted fd:Jamaica';
in that way. It, seems. to me that not only in the:.
West 'Indies, but even in Great Britain itselfG"':
the recent elections show, precisely .the samee"
tendency; I amn pained to have t,'sa-y-that t6 :'
'.'- situation in whbdh- you now place me leads, me-to
.believe: that, in this instance atl ;any 'rate,. yo'ur:
'. request 'n~,.A the..;cirocmstances surrounding it-
Srepreseflt, a complete .reversal of what I an-d, I a'i.;;
certain, mnrv others 'hnve understood 'to. e beI::
r.*'. cen'f tridibi -West qndian government, stAte .'
i epeatedly by so ie of the h highest -ifi..iials.-wh6f
.there. he is no necessity for-me tto quote; andw'h *'*
have considered,, t' be a guiding prinip1a of '0ii'h
Anglo-American. Caribbean .Coimmissidn. .i.- ..-

I """ In viewof thes facts I see no alterpait ive aut
..to inform- you that under nhp.,ircumsta-cB wi. i
I- .. 'entertain, anvy. request -for my ,.resigpat-io9n.#:.
.. consider. myself 'f-b be under an'eightee5 iaguthib.:
cI onfriet beginningg Mar6 h', ', 1945,. with,.b ;i
.undCratandi).ig that from Sepieim'b:r. 1, 1946--we'
b. saall revert -to "ainuoil cootractts~ : .may :-ali
.:.add -'tbat I expectt to be-. appointed' Secretar. ot
; :' 'he general. Research; Counnil ,in acd6rdance. ith,
the various dici.assions that' wve e had .in
:.:..":... the',resommndat'iopn at-:.St: Thomqas: lastr
-::'.i "' ~.f.. throughb. presui' of'sted ht r I
.7. ,rnQ.s0,'L not' On, W],"a e To
.,to eremowd from tbe a~ommisiou'. olpa
d- .". d.Qpe -nOc: 'o ijy :ih;iuthu rny, assiatslce.dnrrtn..

^. *~. ,WE.......
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hopes for the future and the pros and cons of the
post at Howard. But I could not now consider a
post at Howard, whatever the personal conse-
quences to myself. I do not propose to seek a
post at that University as a refuge from the
hostility of West Indian planters."

Three days later, on July 31, 1945, Mr. X called me
in for a discussion which lasted two hours. I was all set
for it. I was a very angry man, and I went prepared to
give no quarter and ask for none, I knew that if I
yielded, they would wipe the floor with me forever after.
My notes, as 1 wrote them up immediately after, read
as follows:

"Mr. X began by saying that he had never been
more hurt or pained in his life, that he had not
been able to sleep because of it, that it was a com-
,plete shock to him to come back on Monday to find
a 'stiff official letter' in reply to unofficial, friendly
conversations. He stated that. I had completely
misunderstood him, and that the Commissi .n had
decided nothing: It was merely that they considered
that the security of tenure at Howard University
was better than what the Commission was in a
position to offer. I listened patiently and politely.

Mr. X however, insisted on discussing The
SNegro in the Caribbean, emphasising that it was
not a matter of the correctness of my views but
rather of the smooth running of the Commission.
In the course of conversation- he admitted that he
had not read the book beyond 'page 40 or 60'-an
admission that I did not allow to pass unnoticed.
As an example of the reaction to the book that
might be embarrassing to the Commission, he cited
S as a hypothetical case a Research Council meeting, :
in Antigua where the governor might be hostile to
me as the author. I knew immediately that the :
letter had been written by the governor of the
Leeward Islands.. I stood about as much of this as I
could, and theb told Mr. X with deliberate.heat that
: I could not agree to: take, part in any further dis--:':
i .,.0ssI of the book hajs written- it. )stood by
', N.. .,E-..
5. . ." . -






it, and I, would, never repudiate it or one single lihe
of it. Everyone knew of the book's existence, .lte;
Colonial Office had given me my appointment, .and..
at one time the State Department was the best
single purchaser, I bad been taught the skills of
my trade and I had learned them well. I was not
prepared to listen to any criticism about my re-
search standards and my methods from any -veste.'
interests in the West Indies.. I would not capitw:
late for one moment to those interests, No question
of unfavourable reaction. to my book could be
entertained. I refused to take responsibility for
the fact, as he argued, that the planters may not,
have read the book before 1945. 1 said I did not
want to hear any more about the subject, and if
the Governor of the- Leeward Islands were to
take the hypothetical attitude attributed to him,
1 expected the Commission and the Colonial'
Office to give me full support.

Mr. X then stated that my appointment as.
secretary of the general Research Council would.
create a new situation by creating a new post and-
requiring a new contract. ln view of the fact that .'
1 would probably be in the West Indies, this would;
be an opportunity for 'reconsideration' of the foriner:
latitude 1 had enjoyed with respect to speak inJn4
and writing. I suspected either (a) an attempt: -k"ij
make the post so unattractive that I would resign:'
or (b) that muzzling me would be thrown to 'thi'
planters as a sop in lieu of my resignation.'";
decided, therefore, to fight the issue. .1 denied thai"
the appointment would. create a-new situation..; I
said that I had take the original position on thel
understanding that I should have liberty to wiitei.
-and 'speak subject to-the necessary controls by .thi'
Commission. I reminded him that I ;was not'"
civil servant and would not be in the hew pot.
SThe airgument.was prolonged and at times heated
SI said that I could not but associate.this entirely
S new. interpretation of my position with thb VeI
S. pressure from the sugar plansteris thatI 'wa. 'fi
S. against. .The upshot was: that he ."
onti: ua:,..tio of tfJ he exifi'gi *i d
GO .'.
0.






S such phrases as: hedid nt, want to. 'bandy:,:
argumentss, I.had-used 'threats' in my letter (the '
reference wa- to my- statements about my contract
and my appointment as secretary ol the Research.
Council), and'that I seemed very insistent on my;"
'rights'.. I askeb'him who else would insist on
them? I pointed out .that the very raising of the.
issue of The Negro in the Caribbean made it
'- imperative for me it get everything q6ite clear for
the future. told'hiim that I was sorry that be had
used suoh expressions a'ud lost hi temper. H. any- :
one bad the tight to .feel aggrieved, I though it :
was myself, .for his'attitude was as if I had corn- .',
emitted a-crium in writing the book, and if I had.'-
concealed .from him--that the En\,lish \edition was-
due to: appear, he.could not treat: me worse. .
added that,;'afcer my joug association with himi,
1. was bitterly disappointed. to- find that his. A
S approaches to me left me only oje conclusion ; that
S .he was acting as te', virtual .a'gept opf the 'WestL.,.
Indian plantpocracy. He winced .visibly.

Throuhout the discussion I. was consoiou's.of
two, impression :. .

S (a) tht- Mr. X wat .itterally flabbergasted. 1.
doubt th'at he had ever expected any colonial.to ::
wite or speak to him like that; (b) that.:aorally :"
S and. physically I .was his superior. -That he: should.
'be evasive and apologetic 1 fully expected. But hue:i
was. ore. tha:n.that;. At time:- he was-quitt. in-' ,
cophereit,: and 'PI-hid to- ask hiw iat least.t~wi:e to".
explain b hat e pnl eadnt, He placed thie blame pn'
S'A fatiguee;' Whbpo .we. were through -he .had 'bad
enough; I'.couild have .gone on for' three -hoi h rs.
SOn bne occasion. he c.none~ed that I..as .furdi~r':
mentaIly':right. k .'I rep ied:;tbht :as fundeatm.nt
'' ally legally morally, ibtelpeica ,y i rig .
e:fus6r ed: t yieldpne :millimetr td6god ... :: g fl

; i l Q1Q11U dedlmy np ;tj s; "tThe.
n. i..;..: d .e ",:.a. t:a' :- been d.. .,..






low and that I would keep my job. -But. I wa. not ;-de-
ceived. I knew, as everyone of you here tonight knows,
that I was a marked man after that. I knew, as you
know, thattbe whisper. campaign would be launched, that
I would be denounced as a trouble maker, that a price
would be set on my heud, tb Tt the axe would be sharpened
in readiness, And that sometime, somehow, somewhere, it
would fall. But I preferred to stretch out my neck to the
executioner than to crawl on my belly and coau my tongu.i
with the polish from his. shoes.

The conservative-minded amoug you may accuse me
of melodrama., or, to use a 5brase thLt has already been
used about me, of playing to the gallery.. You would be.
quite wrong: Let me give you a simple illustration of the
hostile climate in which I lived in official wartime
Washington. The British Section of the .Commissiopr
used to receive information leaflets prepared in the. Brit"i,
ish Embassy in-Washington. These leaflets gave, .-among
other things, advice and data on topical questions. One6.
of them which was passed to me.suggested .various points:
which a British official might make if he .found himselfW
.in a group discussing the problems of Paleitine, India and
other British headaches of the.,day. It'gav.e, point one;.'
point.two, point three, point four, etc,, .stated the Ameri-.
can case, suggested a'reply to-it, and ended up by indi.
eating how one might introduce the Negro questionrif .thPi
situation became too hot to handle..; -1. went to. an offi;-
:cial cocktail party' the very afternoon I -read -the daoc..
ment- I drifted across to where a British colleague; wa:
standing and holding forth with someone. : recognized;
S point o te of the document, -A few- mfitites".later.1 fouihnd-
Smyself within hearing distance of 1th::heaed of my ofMfi ei
He -was. most eloquent, repeating poinr.i four slmdst 'wor
for' word. It was the disemination of id:es.. on the qssem4
bly line principle. I knew, that afternoon,, as .onee .w.'
not only. had his own ideas but also:dde8aid themi;.
I could not follow the party. line, that I :coullo' not ,iser
.: the god of intellectual freedom. and' the, J iahmmin,.
"i official propaganda, at'the same time. .ili

,. I. h'I. ad. been initiated into-lete tbheoryt. -of i..lFi
,.ti-ser..ved..to illuminae,..he ar.t.ti( fOcf
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13

had encountered from the very beginning of my connection
with the Commission. The day before I was to leave
for Boston in May 1943 to be the principal speaker at a
coafrreunc of J-imiicani on the theme, "The four Free-
doms for Jamaica", my British superior officer, Mr. X's pre-
decessor, came to a y office. It, was the first tMile he bad
done so. After soiue chit-chat, be told me that there was
a very great difference between the demand for self-
government in Puerto Rico and the demand for self-
government in Jamaica. He explained iti j this way:
Puerto Rico was asking for something which it had won
frow Spain in 1898 but which had been withdrawn by the
United States in. the same year when the island was annexed
whereas Jamaica was asking for something i.; had never
had before. He concluded by saying that that was a
good point which I might wish to use one day in one.of my
lectures. I thanked him politely, but told him that he
was wrong--.the Jamaicans were asking for something
which they had enjoyed up to 1865 when the self-govern-
ing constitution was freely surrendered by the planters,
and the crown colony system substituted. He walked
out without another .word. I knew irrevocably after that
that the price of intellectual liberty is eteruil vigilance.

The official w is qbortly -tfter appinotd Governor of :a
British West Indian territory whiih I visited in 1944. Haiv.
ing obtained permission from my office to lecture o(n the
proposed West Indian University and on representatives
government, I accepted invitations on my arrival to give
these lectures and this was reported in the press. When.
I saw the Governor, be expressed regret that I had agreed
to lecture on representative government. In his opinion
the timing was not right; he preferred me. to speak on
slavery, the proposed University, federation. I thought
this a-very strange attitude to take, as the island was
about to be officially launched on the road to represeinta-
tive government. It seemed to me, therefore that far
from my timing being wrong, it was absolutely right, and
I said so, But, as he was the Governor, I apologised for
announcing the lecture and stated that I would immediately
cancel it. He' advised against this, as he felt that some
.explanation might 'be requested. But be asked me to de-
lete .fromrwu he copy 1: showed him a short paragraph which..
included : quotation from th. great .British authority on
.: I.;:': : :' ;" . :.". .' .. '. :.






representative government, John Stuart Mill, He also
challenged my interpretation of the colonial regime in the
thirteen mainland colonies of North America before the
War of Independence, but he subsequently withdrew his
opposition when I asked him to send to the library for
any book on the subject.

Faced with these British frontal attacks, I had' also; to
cope with a United States attack from tne rear. My tour
of duty included Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. Just
before my departure I was asked by the editor of a well-
known quarterly in the United States, Foreign-Affairs, to
write an article on race relations in hose two areas. On
my return to Washington, I completed my article and sub-
mitted it to the United States Section of the Commission
for review in accordance with the rules of the' State Depart-
ment. Every effort was madp to persuade me to withdraw
the article and not submit it for approval, on the ground
that the timing was not right. It struck me that if West
Indians are to think only when Britain and the United
States consider it is the right time for them to do so, we
will never think at all. I disagreed with the argument.
I consider that each and every moment of each and every
day is a fit and proper time to attack racial discrimina-
tion, and I said so. I was then asked whether I would
similarly consider the time appropriate to discuss, for ex-
ample, the Guatemalan claims on British Honduras. I
replied that I would, and indicated how' I would treat the
subject- by discussing first the Guatemalan claim, then
the counter-claim of British Honduras'and Great Britain
after which I would tuin up judicially. Against this the
argument was advanced that one engaged in public affairs
at a semi-government level should n'ot write about public
affairs. I replied that the Prime Minister of Great Brit-
ain, Wiuston Churchill, wrote his own version of public
affairs; the then 'Vice President of the U.S.A., Henry
Wallace, wrote his own version of public affairs which not
infrequently differed from the Government's policy, and
Lord Olivier, a former Soci:list governor of Jamaica, bad
thirty years before written a well known book on White
Capital and Coloured Labour even though he was in the
British Colonial service. I was challenged as to> a state-
ment I made to the effect that:a coloured visitor to hotels
in Puerto l-ico would not ,.be refused a room or. service,




15

but would be placed in the annex; I replied that it had
happened to me on all the mauy occasious I had visited the
island up to that time. Eventually it was agreed to sub-
mit the article for approval. It wis returned to me with
one insignificant amendment, ;Lnd about a mouth later it
was cited as a reference in an official United States docu-
ment on Puerto Lico.

My victory over The Negro in the Caribbean was the
signal for a number of sniping attacks on me in official
quarters which were so regular that I could not possibly
regard them as anything else but a deliberate campaign,
well planned and carefully directed. At a coufereuce in
1946 I met the Economic Adviser of a certain British
territory. He greeted me with these words: "1 hear you
have written a book called Capitalism and Slavery. I
understand you take the view that slavery was abolished
for economic and not humanitarian reasons. Well, I don't
agree with you. Of course, I haven't read the book my-
self," I suggested we defer discussion until he had read
it. I bad sent a rianuscript I had written on education
in the British West Indies to one of the highest British
educational authorities in the area. He drew me aside at
the same conference and spoke to we as follows: "I want to
talk to you very seriously, but not about your manuscript.
In fact, [ haven't read it. But 1 want to talk to you
about the tact that an increasing number of white people
in the West Indies are beginning to express concern about
your views." I bade him good day. Some time after my
return to Trinidad in 1948, a government official wrote to
me for a list of my authorities on a particular point I had
made in one of a series of articles on CGrribbean history. I
was very busy at the time, and, as his letter was rather
impertinent, I was in no hurry to reply to it. I woke up
one Sunday morning to find that he had publicly accused
me in the press of distorting the facts for what he called
the morbid purpose of telling coloured people that they
are not inferior. Some of you may remember how he was
reminded that, where ignorance is bliss, 'tis folly to be
wise.

very effort was made to keep me out of the West
SIdian University College. From the time that the pro-
Sposed establishment of the college was announced I began
', {






to make a serious study of university developmcut in the
past hundred years, with the ,emphasis on the colonial or
semi-colinial countries. 'Jhis study convinced me thit
our university must develop a curriculum suited to the
Caribbean environment and to this end, vith self-govern-
ment ahead, it must be a fully self-governing university,
not affiliated to any British or Canadian university. At
the request of tbe chairinan of the University Commission,
I prepared a .long memorandum on the subject which I
sent not only to him but also to the two Sections of the
Commission and to the official in the Coloniial office I
have mentioned earlier. The Colonial Office official replied
that my study, for care, thoroughness and close reasoning,
must rival Capitalism and Slavery. The chairman of the
University Commission assured me that the commission
was in agreement with my views, that for the most part
the essentials of my scheme found a place in its recom-
mendations, and that, approaching the problem from a
somewhat different angle, it bad come to decisions not far
removed and not differing in any material sense from my
scheme with the exception of the factor of residence. Not-
withstanding these assurances. I heard nothing more of the
question of an appointment until some five years later a
close friend of mine on the University Council, a promi-
nent lawyer in the Leeward Islands, advised me that the
view held in the highest quarters in the University was
that, when the time crime to make a certain appointment,
they would be sure to find a much better man than 1.

I later expanded my memorandum and published it
as a book, Education in the British West Indies. My
views, especially those ou the West Indian University, so
appealed to the late John Dewey, the great United States
scholar. ahd philosopher, that he wrote a foreword to the
book, describing it as "a case study of a world problem"
in which the United States itself was involved. Thus if
the chairman of the University Commission and the
Colonial Office official were sincere in the views they
expressed to me, why was I kept out of the University?
The only possible explanation is the battle over The
1egro in the Carribbean. If my superior officer sent to the
Colonial Office copies of reviews of Capitalism and Slavery,
asked me for a note on the English edition of The Negri
in the Caribbean to transmit to it, and consulted it on every






single detail of my appointment, it is unthinkable that
he did not report what hnd happened over The Negro' in
the Caribbean.

Here was I, therefore, a member of the Commission's
staff, -being attacked right and left by 'sugar planters,
bureaucrats and a governor for writings which none of
them had ever done me the elementary courtesy to read
before condemning me. I learned then bow the imperialists
operate by condemning colonials without: giving them a
hearing. It all reminded me of a British publisher, notorious
for his publication of revolutionary literature, who in 1939
angrily told me, though he had not read my doctor's thesis
which later became Capitalism and slavery, that he would
never publish a book which took the view that Britain
abolished slavery for economic and not humanitarian
reasons, because it would be contrary to -the British
tradition.

Whilst the heathen raged, my senior colleagues in
the university fraternity commended. The contrast was
strikingly exemplified when The Colonial Rebiew, the
monthly journal of the Institute of Education of one of
Britain's greatest universities, the University of London,
thus reviewed The Negro in the ('aribbean, two uionths
after I was nearly dismissed from the Commission for
being its author;

"Eric Williams' scholarly and- carefully docu-
mented study gives us a survey of the Caribbean
in the perspective of it. historic past and presents
existing problems in a constructive interpretation
looking towards its -future.- He is-concerned mainly
with economic questions and he views educational
and political problems from this angle. It is in-
teresting to note in view of Colonel Stanley's
recent dispatch to the Governors of the West In-
dian Colonies (on federation) that Eric Wiliiam's
study led him to believe that the future progress.
of the Caribbean lay in political and economic
federation."

1 showed the review to Mr. X, who had tried to force me
out of the Commission. He never said a mumbling word.







about? My book was a thorough and careful analysis of
government.commissions and statistics for the entire Ca'rib-
bean area. It dealt as much with conditions in PueriAb
Rico as with conditions in the British West Indies, I
described the sugar industry as an industry which com-
bined the vices of feudalism and capitalism -with the virtues
of neither. I contrasted the dividends distributed to the
shareholders and the wages paid to the workers. I .quo-
ted- a Barbados commission which warned that a furda-
mental change in the division of earnings between .the
employer and his employees is essential if- hatred apd
bitterness are to be removed from the minds of the
majority of employees. I quoted a Puerto Hican govirn-
ment agency which insisted that the sugar industry dLd
not satisfy the requirements of the economic life of the
island and should be adjusted in .order'to mett the n.dsd
of the people. I quoted a Puerto Rican scholar who coni-
cluded that the sugar platation economy with its seasonal
employment does not offer any hope .for the amelioratigon
of social and economic conditions; rather it aims to pe!:pe-
tu;ite the present deplorable situation. I stressed that, ,xcepf.
in times of crisis, adequate subsistence for the workers
and the social stability which comes fiom a diversifji'
economy have meant no more to foreign capitol than t:
the man in the moon. I quoted a Barbados comiissioi
to the effect that Barbados planters claimed that 'ti
worker does not take milk in his tea because be does no0
like milk. I quoted a British aristocrat in the Bciut"
of Lords who asked whether Trinidad .is the only .pla;e
where there are bad houses, no roads, no water,':: p
4. sewerage; I could have asked him why he did not conre
to live in John John and help our tourist trade, but I did a4oi

I quoted a Puerto Rican study which attributed tf.:.t
incidence of malaria to .the fact that houses were-ion'l
too frequently built by the workers on swumpy lands;.'6
that they should not encroach on the sugar plantations
and that nine out of ten houses on the sugar plan.
-,:ations lack bathing conveniences. I quoted, a: .Bri.ti|
philanthropist, a great friend of Mahatma: 8a.i.
who w.as told on a visit..to British Guiana that thebi
don directors of one.aof the- sugar companies wo ldv
.., money for new ...machiner .ut nob for diemoli






u.Ct.L.AuOiUn u.yuAi u wulILu UtI WUr-fera IIVBU. .1 q(JUea 0ne
Warning issued to company directors-by .th.e Disturbances
Commission in Trinidad in 19;7 that the claim of the
workers for the common decencies of home life should. be
one for primary consideration,, and that by maintaining
existing conditions they are providing 'ground for justifiable
discontent. [ quoted Mr. Lloyd George who described
the British West Indies as the slums of the Empire. I
-quoted. a British Guiana- Nutrition Committee which ad-
,vised that a concerted drive against malnutrition in the
Indian population and the- raising of their.. nutritional
standard of living would result in immeasurable benefit to
S.the stug:r industry. I quoted the afamorn statement of
Munoz Marin, now the first .elected governor'of Puerto
:Rico, that Puerto Rico-was Uncle .Sam's second largest
.s.eatshop.
I stressed the necessity of peasant proprietorship, I
Strayed the growth of the labour movement; I warned that
o-or the 'Caribbean as for the rest of the world, for thd
N..egro as for the rest of mankind, there are only two al-
:te-ranativas greater.freedom. or greater tyranny. I con-
I.old ed: "Full and unqualified dembcrucy nothing less.
i-T.hd true Magna Carta of these colonies is economic eman-
-.cipatio.n, but the road to econuofic emancipation demands
"political democracy.",

:."; 'hisis.is what ,I rote in 1942, in the mnidst of a war
..'based on the Atlantic Charter and the four freedoms. This
was what .the sugar planters of Ahtisua, ;with the gover-
-ior of the island as-their spo'jesmao, wished to crucify me:
firr. The. Governor had. only: to denounce me, and Mr. X
V'.f- the Commission, who had not read the book'him'self
- beyond page 40 or 60, promptly obeyed orders, Mr X
.did not stop. to inquire whether the dutyof a governor:.:i
,.: to govern his territory in the interest only of one class.,.
.,BHe did not -stop to ask why he sTould attach anyim-:
"'prtance at all 'to the governor and planters of-one wret-'
:dhed little impoverished island. -NQ. other' governor, :no.,
ofkier planters. attacked ,ae. i'o -,fRit, Mr. i. knew very *
i;,eM thab the governor i.)f* iier territory .tid ja id .ea
S it Rth6~e oppositeab i t ae. 'A pA. ril 10, '1944&,.o the'-
i .:I.ibO.ff iflt;3V. 4,i0So Trini4dsd i pe .1:liad- le6ftfor .
k aL%:t;A# Pj4* hokl the P
," .z, . S' W. : " .- 77







Library on "The British West Indies in World History".
It was a preview of Capitalism and Slavery, The Acting
Governor; who was in the chair, introduced me, and,.in.a
reference to my island scholarship, spoke thus as reported
in the Port-o/-Spain Gazette two days later:

"Dr. Williams has come home, and he has
brought with him scholarship and learning of which
anyone, anywhere, however talented, might be proud.
Seldom can a Government investment be so well
placed. He has passed from the field of study to the
field of action, as Secretary of the Caribbean Re-
search Counsil"..

Who was right-the Governor of Trinidad and Tobago
or the Governor,of the Leeward Islands? Did. the former'
speak as he did in 1944 because he had not yet seen
The Negro In the Carzbbean, whereas' the latter wrote as
he did in 1945 because be had seen it? Do governors
say one thing in public and the opposite in private-?
How could the Governor of Trinidad and Tobagp com-
mend my scholarship and learning which Went 'into
Capitalism and Slavery and the Governor of th-i.-ee-
wdrd Islands try to crucify me for them because they
went into The Negro in the Caribbean? Was the Triii-
dad Government's investment in my scholarship well
placed in 1944 and badly placed in 1945 ?
Ten years have elapsed since the controversy. Look
back on these ten years, Ladies and Gentlemen, and tllI
me whether I should have been crucified in 1945 for ad-
vocating as a writer some of the very things which :by
1955 have either been translated or are now being, trains
late into action by the chosen leaders of the .We t
Indian pepole. Perhaps you can't answer my questiQo
rhen ask Munoz Marin in Puerto Rico. who came-.
power, with. a majority unequalled in any. election in a.:i
democratic country, on the slogan, "Bread, Land 4nuo
Liberty", who -has created 20.000 new jobs in indnstify
to reduce the dependence ,on the .sugar indus try, K'l d
haes raised individual and family incomes in Puerto.'Bifo
l':who.has given to the people of Puerto Rico a. yi i
~T~ aognif. ,p ideuce which have,.no equal anyhreelse un
W hohB ivrPure







up one of the most powerful labour movements in the
Caribbean, which brought to their knees in a strike not so
long ago the very sugar planters who attacked me in
1945 and which swept the field in recent elections Ask
Robert Bradshaw in St. Kitts who has done exactly what
Bird has done in Antigua I Ask Norman Manley, who
is now in England demanding copuplete self-government
for Jamaica, who is planning to create 150,000 new jobs
Sin the island, and who is going in the- next five years to.
transform the island into something which no one familiar
with it today after 300 years of British rule will be able,
to recognize l Ask the sugar workers in Trinidad whose
union has just been recognized by the manufacturers!
..Even the British Government has seen the light. The
Soulbury Commission recommended the establishment.
of a fund for loans to aiagar workers and cane farmers for.
.building or repairing or enlarging their houses and for
Setting rid of the unsightly barracks which I condemned.

It is not Fwhom the Antigua plantersashould have cru-
cified-. but 'Munoz Marin and Norman Manley, Bird' and
-' Bradsiaw, the Trinidad sugar workers and Britain's Soul-
;; :bury Commission. That they should oppose me was not
Sunnatural. But that the Anglo-American Caribbean Com-
Smission should persecute me for showing how badly needed
was improvement th the conditions it Ras. set pp toi
improve, that 'the conservative Governor. ofa. British ter-
ritory should houud me at exactly tte time when the
'iBritish people were about to transfer their allegiance to.:
StheL' Labour party which natidrialised Britain's sugar re-:i
i fining 'inddusty- those. injustices, were hard to forgive. It1
w'turned out, however, that I had: the last laugh. In 1947,.
I.i lwent- to Antigua on official duty. By,e then the Gover-
" ,or had been transferred, I wds' met at the airport by:
.t ;tie aide de. camp of the Acting Governor, who ihas'. sincebd
-1.;become one .of the principal officials of the sugar ma.nti
:.;fiacturers' AesociAtion, is a Certain British West:-~adia.n
" territory. The aide de canmp brought atn jIe itation fr.i
Y' the Governor that, I. stay. at 'Governhenit .Hquse a his
K inest. Thei Acting erwm nor, however, was- a'WesIt l
. .. .>. .. .. .
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Sa2'
.2 .,. ,

fell to me, Public Enemy No. :1 of the Antigua planters
in 1945, to propose the line of action for the defense of.
the sugar industry to be taken at the London Conference.
on the General Agreement of Tariffs and trade. It- was
the 'leader of the Jamaican -Sugar Manufacturers. who
first saw the -merit of the arguinent I advanced on whiiih
the whole British We.t Indian case was subsequently
.made to rest. My argument was that the protection o.
West Indian products by Britain and.Canada loIg ante-
dated GATT, and was. acknowledged by Britain as a ..pa.rt
of its moral: responsibility for slavery and indenture. Such;
protection, I continued, was the economic expressiounof the-
oonstitutional relationship between Britain and the" West
Indies. It was therefore no more the subject of interna--
tional reviewthan was the protection accorded' by. theb
United States and France .to Peurto Rico and Martinique
respectively.. The products of these Gaiibbean eu.it-rie es
enter the metropolitan markets free of -4uty, this protection
heing only the economic expression of the constitutiot-ial.
rela ionship between them and their respective metropoli-i
ta countries, :

To compl-te the record of this aspect of- my subject.:
let me state that the whole question of freedomt to writer
and speak was settled in the West Indies by the staff rules:
of the Caribbean Commission. These rules pr.ovide_ ith'aB,
the -permission of the Secretary General must 'be ad:sug.-
for any public lecture, and .that .any lecture o.r article *or
book on .subjects within the Commission's terms- of .refei
enoe niust be approved by the Secretariat's Editorial a1 Ba
I have -lectured and, written priicipalty on' historicai-l, dtl:
rural, literary and educational, subjects. It is 'only; iwithi';
the--past years that the Commission -began: -.to dea l th
education, and .the other subjects are ignored by "tit. -Bt:
: 1 have always sought the necessaryiper4riisstQninJ, ewritir
S and always, obLained it in writing, the particular ::'i
being clearly indicated. have not spoken-bon as-'ng
subject .within the past five years without official perima
s.on, ..As the rules -do not specify that .thq coitet
lectures mnst be approved, I havee never: suibmitti
lectres ,or, -approval Let rne ad t'tlia; t:he; m I.C mii
.;, ;has ,.more. than-once gone on record .as. welcominte
b .L-' :members of the Secretariats.staff. -.
-..-. .' :. .: -. .. .., :.,. : ::-e .: .... :.
.. ,:.<. .=:.,.. ,<:,- ? > ... .; : ..'`;.' ``. -;` .. ` :.i `. ,






You are now, Ladies aod Gentlemen, better able to
underst'shd the feeling of relief at separation from the
Commission which I expressed in a recent press inter-
view. But you may ask why I tolerated those conditions
for over twelve years.. The. answer is that I represented in
th.e Cornmisiaon's Secretariat the cause of the West In-
dian people. I also bad more peracual reasons. My con-
neotion with the Commissiop brought me into close con-
tact with present problems in territories the study of whose
history has been the principal purpose of toy adult life,
while my ass-ociation with representatives of t.he metropo-
litan govertruents -enabled tie to understand, as I could
not otherwise have understood,, th'e mess in which the
West Indies find themselves today.

The' principal (;netions of the Caribbean Commission
aveoto concern itself with econo4ieic and social matters of
common interest to the Caribbean area, and to study, for-
nulate and recommen-d measures, proglammes.and policies
with, respect to social anud counomic problems designed to
,contribute to the wellbeing of the Caribbean area. There
was not really any need for the Commission and its pre. *
decessor. The West India Royal Commission of 1938 had.
.thoroughly studied the British West Indian problem, and
f.armulaked and ,eeammended measures, program-mes and
policies designed to contribute- to thb wellbeing of the
British West liadian area. Many similar studies had been
mada in Puerto Rico. Wh it there was and is still room
(dr. stuidy, the basio problem was o implement the recom-
mediattiota made. But the two Commissions were a part
oti-te price extracted by the United States fop aid to the
European governments during the war. These gpvern-
mreite, ced not. resist the p'iesure actively, so -they resisted
passi~ely. The European governments have. always been
.determwn.ed not to make, the. Commission work. The
Amer-efinse. 'busy w-itbi.more important commitments else-'
.here,. h-ave been content to.play ball in order to retain
thhei .foathold ih the. aQn-Ameri.can area. I was 'told by ..,:
:Bmany important -Aierican offioiaJA in .1946that. they. pre- .
.Prhed -to aet ap the Com.pision';. headquarters in '1rini--:
*dhid witBh an &u=sieaa hboass rather than in 3t. Thomiase
;.wi th .a.ritiash bose, so thbi t heey 'eqo d b e .. listening
ui:p. i eRb. b Biti*s Waes l4die,-as. T..T p Qomjiatio, has
,: .:.:i:;:. ,:.' .!,.:.. i;:.. :- .: .. :.^ a ^ -- .:... : .. :.E 'i . ,i: ..
be: 0 4:: '; ;=; :;.. .. :. -.z, '. . . :... :' .: i,..-:, :,.;"i
A. . ~ .=:.- = ; .< = : .. =., .., ... .... .. ... .;' :. ". -.: ;,,
VC' "?'tt ."':=; "' :=-.'' .r .. .." . ."






from the beginning been the stage on which the rivalry
of the four powers has been fought out.

The Commission organisation consists of four parts-
the Caribbean Commission itself, the Caribbean Research
Council, the West Indian Conference, and the Central
Secretariat. The entire organisation is dominated by the
four governments--Britain, France, Holland and the U.S.A.
Whilst each Section of the Commission includes West In-
dian representatives, few of these have been in any sense
representative of the West Indian people. Moreover, each
Section has a Co-Chairman, who is a metropolitan repre.
sentative. Only tne British Co-Chairman has any direct
connection with the West Indies. The four Co-Chairmen
have the right to decide themselves, without reference to
their other Commissioners, matters other than those re-
lating to procedure. The Commission meets twice at year;
m the interim decisions are taken by a Working Commit-
tee located in Washington, comprising representatives of
-the British, French and Dutch Embassiesand of the State
Department-four people who have otherwise not the -re-
motest connection with West Indian problems. The Re-
search Council consists of fifteen representatives of the
four. governments; it has five committees, each consist-
ing of one member from each goveihment. The Puerto
Ricans and the Virgin Islanders apart, there are very few
West Indians. The British Section is packed with advis-
ers of the British Develoopent and Welfare Organisation;
there is only one British West Indian on the Committee.
The French Section is similarly packed with representa-
'tives from metropolitan France, birds of passage who
come and go frequently. The West Indian Conference,
which meets every two years, is attended by delegates
chosen by the respective legislatures in the British West
Indies or by the govern ents in other territories, But
these politicians, who oan only make recommendations to
the Commission, have advisers, the majority European,
in addition to which the fpor governments bring their own
advisers, sometimes in vast .nunihers, so that one wonders
what West Indian discussion there can be in such an at-
mosphere. There have been two Secretaries-General to date
one Ameriban, the other Dutch; when the Seoretariat swas.
transferred to Trinidad in 1946, there were five senior offii
cera, of whom one was American, one a Frenchmian -fror





.Frarne, one an Englishman, one a Dutchman;. the fifth
was a French West Indian.

Obviously the cause and interests of the West Indian
people needed to be defended in such an organisation, at
least in two ways: first, the scope df the work to be done
and the priorities to. be given to it; second, the selection
of the persons to do that work I became the watchman
for and the spokesman of the West Indian people in the
Secretariat with respect to these two questions, and by my
visits to territories and my attendance at meetings and
conferences .I was in a position to express the West Indian
point of view and to influence West Indians in attendance.
I'
When the Commission transferred its headquarters to
Tri'nidad in 1946, I resigned my post, for reasons that I
shall make' clear, later, but agreed, at the request .of the
Secretary General, to continue as a consultant ip charge
of a Washington branch office specially iMaintained,for
the purpose of my continuingand completing some studies
on crops and trade'on which I had been engaged. During
This period the research work. at the headquarters in Tri-
nidad; under the direction of an Englishman, was devoted.
-almost exclusively to .a study of duPder disposal from
sugar factories. The European *head of the Commis.siQn's
research work might readily agree to be a..dunderhead.
tI fact, be' might be a quite admirable dunderhead, But
any West Indian worth his -salt wold .'obviously give
priority to the disposal of the sugar rather than ,tbe
under .from. sqgar factories. But when J, prppo.sed this,
the Commission said no. I.t said ttat the sugar industry
.can take care. of ,its qwn ;nar.keting ariangef4nA%, .a if
-,Wes Indian Ministers don'tgo time land again to jAngland
to fight it- battles.

SI promptly 'put a -p top to the adnder norpene -when"'
I arrived -ii Tfriniad in. 1948 to 'head the'$esearob Branch.:
'Iproposed tha t -the Research IBranch aboard publish an
economic journal. and1 a. start'sticsti1 .andbobk nd -hou'ld'!.
,'-bAtinue. its trade studies The ftirtih fought. tOfr li' and
:tia.il against my -pro tos.al, .bdt- : t. ;jalmieti-..the.: i.

i"g _- uri. ag., e. '". o r. . .- e ~ .- n -s.a "'






Mnan WILD DnaS CauseU uV mau. vvuratug WILu cULJLauiiktVu:
preparing the agenda for conferences, I was able time: aind
again to orient the discussions towards West Indian needs'
whether the subject was agriculture, livestock, education-or
trade. 1 proposed from time to time various important
problems as the subject for conferences, such as small
scale farming and trade statistics.

The next hurdle was who was to do*the work? An
imported expert is very expensive: much time and money
are consumed in familiarization tours running all over
the damned place as ifhbe is a Minister; in the course
of these tours the expert falls victim, as hundreds have
donethroughout the centuries, to the hospitality offered
by the vested interests. What he learns on the tour
is of no value to the West Indies, for he takes his know-
ledge with him when he leaves. More often than not,
his contribution has little value. Let me give some
examples. ,

The Commission once approved a proposal of t.e.
American Secretary General for a regional survey of trahfs-
portation facilities to be made by a highly paid Dut(db
expert ignorant of the area. This survey is alleged to have
cost U.S. $20.000, according to a rumour circulaft'ng
among the delegates- to the Third Session of the West-
Indian Conference helddin Guadeloupe in 1948, which rejedt-
ed it out of hand and recommended against its publication.
The survey was eventually made by a West Indiai member
of my research staff as a part of his normal duties, though
he had to visit again the very territories previously visited.
by the Dutch expert. Another sUrvey, this time f
industrial development in the area, was made by a _a46
of experts, one appointed, by each-of the four Govdrfer
ments, the four reports being collated by a fifth expert.
One member of the panel was British, another DutcJP
while the co-ordinator was French; they, broughtjs:,ij
bear on the question the traditional metropolitan hpaiftiii
to colonial industrialisation. The report took years to' 40:
plete. 'Before it was finished, I .succeeded in ge'tV''
Arthur Lewis, the. distinguished West Indian econoimbit
appointed as a consultant to the. Secretariat tdsti
industrial development in Puerto Rico and make,,e
mendations for the British West Indies. '-D.
thr e: months,, over, the stud ,,.i oo
,' y. : '. . . ,







0'ther aspects of industrial development were later studied
thoroughly by the We'st Indian economist on my research
_:staff as a matter of routine.

Ever since its inception the Commission has.-talked
about .promoting Caribbean trade, especially trade between
the different territories of the Caribbean. I had a Dutch
expert on my staff. Never was expert, more inexpert; in
five years he anaIysed&exactly nothing, and some of his
..work bad. to be transferred to a West Indian member of
.of my staff, while I undertook the.rest. The West In-
dian Conference wbcbh met in Jamaica at the end of 1952
~then .-roposed a comprehensive programme;of market -re-
:search. The Commission accepted this recommendation.
-Last year, however, the Secretary General proposed to
.6e that, the project be abandoned; the principal respon-
'sibility for work iq this field has now been assigned to
specially appointed French and American officers, one of
whom hbas no knowledge" of the West Indies. I recom-
mende~ a series of crop studies to 'suplenient tbe mar-
,ket research programme. The Commission appiovyd, but
liter agreed to abandon the project on the recommenda-
'tiibn of tbe Secretary General.

The most recent manifestation ofmetropolitan influ-
ence is technical assistance the provision of experts .to
stidy this, that and th~r- other by other international or-
gan,isations or by'the United States Government.' One
such expert,-broiight down to study fundamental educa-.
Stion, bas publicly advised tht the traiinin of voluntary_.,
workerss should begin witb. community singing and gaines..,
d proceed' to specific 'training in such subjects as how.
brighter. meetings; conduct community games and
,curry ggs.' Teaehi ig us how to lay thomrbefor e we.curry..,
them vwas possibly tro fundamental" for him;.-He ends
this fundamental nonsense with some points fojr~cosidetra..)- :i
'i6on when framing the proposed training course, His secon.idl
: o int"is: -.. f .- . ''
.'.::: ... ", tish..bould ( 6ve;er-b fo; frgottieU b .4t ha ,a Q.:: community -v
o.. f ei"consi sf b et' .ai-d. e roamen, .-'D ha, ..the
B -, ^ A": ',;.: '. ' : .'. ;'.",, .; .:.":.;'-- ** ** t. : .,**" *-.-" ;.----l : --:7". *.; .. 1' 1 '. -..i : -






S it is proper to think that every mai,- womad aBhd
child is a mewher of the community."

So now.you knrw, Ladies and Genilemen, it is proper.;.
to think that every man and woman here' tonight is a
member of the community. Your children are, too.

Some very good work is being done by some.of these
experts in the field of housing and bore economics, though.
I once shared an apartment with ah expert whose services'
were requested by th3 local government but who for three.,
months was not told what work he was required to do,.
He drew three months' pay without working, while I,sat
down night after night doing overtime work, for thb' Gpeuit!
mission without pay. From ,the research centre specified-:
Sin the international agreement setting up the Commiission,'-
the Secretariat has become a clearing house, a.post,office,
and the West Indian research worker making fundamental.
studies has been replaced by the imported administrative.:
officer writing letters or progress reports. .

These differences of opinion as to the work.to be un':
dertaken by the CcmmiFsuin in fulfilment of its obliga-'
tions apd the persons who should carry it out, importanth.
as they are in themselves, spring from a' basic differences -
in perspective between West Indians and non-west Indian.
Let me again give' you examples. The American Secretary'
General once suggested to me that the Secretariat should
strongly advocate United States capital investment in tbhe
Caribbean. I demurred, pointing out that that was a mat-
ter for the individual governments: the Secretariat should
advocate investment, not inVestment from any particular ':
country. I once proposed to a meeting one of my pqt.-
ideas the publication by the Commission of a book d -.:
cribing the various territories as a natural implemenrta-'i
':tion of its principLl purpose, cooperation between tbhe'
territories and helping each one to know the 'other bet"i
;ter. Th 'proposal was attraked by a British chtenit, who:'
h"had. beea in -the West Indies a few months,- and bwhi.:
was attending his first meeting of -te group invodl vd. :,:
.. .. .., ... $;
On. another occasion I proposed to a cobnfbtei'e a'o
.. tiade, promotion that the Cormission should' orgu isS
iT hibition' jof- ~ n-perisbbi .t:,duq. iatv
^'- .fP;. 1~ ~ .:~*?~~, E~;:







Caribbean area for display in the various territories, Fartly
for trade purposes, partly for educational purposes. I ex-
plained my reasons for the proposal I had a few months
before seen a similar exhibition in Amsterdam which had
been attended by 40,000; people; people in 'rinidad do
not know that Jamaica produces some of the best, coffee
in the world, which is cheaper than, imp'-rted U'nited
States: blends, and a very good coffee' liqueur, etc., etc.l
etc. One American claimed that I wanted to set up a
museum;: I had to ask him what the devil did it matter
to. him what we set up in the Caribbean. My proposal.
was passed by the Conference, but the Cowmission has
referred it. to a newly appointed American officer for study,
which means that ic is as good as dead. If I had only
thought early enough of taking the proposal up with the
Junior Chamber of Commerce in Trioidad on. the occasion
of the.recent Trade Fair, you would have seen the exhi-
bition for yourselves.

'When the work for the conference was under way
the Secretary General asked, me what was meant by trade
promotion was it the promotion of metropolitan trade or
the promotion of West Indian trade? I told him that I
was .astonished that such a question should come from
the bead of the Commission's Secretariat, which by its term
of reference, was; required to concern' itself ofly with the
prpmo.tion. of West Indian trade, and leave the metropoli-
tan governments to look after their own interests. He said
h'e.saw. my point. But did' he. really ? Shortly after the
conference, the Trinidad Chamber of Commerce passed a
iesolutio'n calling on. the. government to' send a trade,
mission to the .United States, After consulting infor-
ially- the Chamber's Presideut,-hithself a -West Indian,
I .proposed, to the Secretary: General that my- staff should'
proceed,. to complete a |;study of the details. of 'British
West Indian trade 'withi.the United States which I had'
begun mygeff in the ,course of a. paper 1 had prepared.for
t6e'bonference. I explained. that such a study would. be: '
of"lho utmosc value -to. the.- Trinidad delegation' Th'..:.
Scre tary Ge eral vetoed ,my' proposal, Preent .indic ia .
tions- .ia that it iametrontlioota iintee bioh il'
eeiVb "pr ioty-j '.,in he oi 'o it i'n. Secre.tiart hi.s^ is. ^'..
'4til ,'en. ilDiith o
hiot*i ,ln *i..^f ..m ,t. 1.. i.B aa Bi- .
sli{ ,-@! : 1Y .ftr i: R 0u.; 5"..a .p,.0 ~ ';.






promoting Dutch exports to Trinidad; but :[ had not,.
been able to get him to take the slightest interest whilsti'
in his job in the possibility of selling Montserrat tonia-
toes in (urapao.

-I took the Commission seriously and was determined-:
that it. should be made an. effective force and brought'
close to the people. -The imported officials, on the other.,
hand, looked upon the Commissiou as a .final resting place
before retirement, and reEricted their activities to pala- .
vers with "Pig shots." For example, I'protested year
after year against the expenditure of U.S. $3,000 on en-
tertainment, whilst our juinor staff bad to work overtime.'
without pay, the official attitude being that the Com--'.
mission, which enjoys diplomatic immunities, can't be.-
subd. The Commission eventually reduced the'eutertainr-:
ment allowance' aud overtime pay was approved for the
junior staff. The American Secretary General opposed -my"'
proposals, claiming that he did most of his work at cocktail.'
parties. I thanked him for the information, advised him-'
that_ research and cocktails did not aix, and I stopped
going to official parties. A -few years later a conference
on home economics was convened here in Trinidad. I-
Sthought the occasion an excellent opportunity to invite"'
social workers to meet the delegates from different:"7
territories at one of the evening seminars organized at such;,
conferences. I had to fight to get the Secretary Genoral's-'
approval for this, and even then he insisted on restrictingL:'
the number of invitations to'fifty. When the conference -
was over, I had a good laugh. Trinidad's most prominent-
social worker, a legislator, wrote a stinging letter. criti-,
cising the Secretariat for inviting so few people. I missed-
no opportunity of getting close to the people. The ei i-
patriate missed no opportunity of getting away fromi"
.them. .. .


This -conflict between the West Indian and the, metro-:
politan point of view, between West Indian and metropolis:
: tan interests, revolved in the last analysis around. t'he que.
tion of the appointment of local men' to senior and -proQes-,
Q,. sional posts in the Commission's' Secretariat.'. This' is6
definite requirement of the 'Agreement signed.b.. the:-fb
: gyermenrs b for :the establish men-h;.,6[- th Oi
_.th x...







"In the -appointment of the, Secretary-General,
o'"-fficers and -stiaff of the Central Secretariat, pri-
mary consideration shall be given to the technical,
Squalitications and personal integrity of candidates
S-and, to the extent possible consistent with this
consideratibu, such officers and staff shall be re-
cruited within the Caribbean area."

..This brings 'me to the third- part of nim story, the
ddfeat inflicted by my dismissal on the policy of appoint-
ing. local men Lu. high office in the Commission's Secre-
taria t,
.
'..T'Phe basic conflict between the Uni'ted States arid
the European governments tb which I have referred earlier-
wa6. reflected in the struggle over my appoiutmient. The
United States Sectioh of the Commission did not see'
eyee tc eye -with ihe British Section on my modest
responsibility. of- one- afternoon's work a fortnight, and
u:ii'der -prssure from it my duties were steadily increased,
both -in -quantity and quality,- until the month before my
lerlaneunt appointment, I was working a 30-hour week.
The' United States Section broughbta similar pressure on
tkhe British '-Section'-to set in motion the' machinery at
the'-British Embasy to prevent my induction into the ,'
'ariy, two days, before I :was due to report for- military .
service. I" was left under ho illusion as to thB reason for
ithii'" -- I was :told that if the British had my right leg
'th:. Americans had my left. The speaker had a bioad .
smite -p.on: his face, but .1 knew:.it was no laughing matter.
.Is:'y.bolised the. British' West Indian. people, governed
'b.:-Brittain,' withh. val bases leased' to the United -States.,
sTih'e;,'.Britislh :tever liked -this arrangement a'nd *tried ,to ,
gef:..ne, out of Washingtor' by ,offering me the ppst? o .Agri- ;:'
'cilt ial Economist in Jamaica. I declined the; offer, on -
ithe, ground that I a'ni not 'an agricultural: economist.

-.'By 1945, however, the position had changed, in two.' .:
repc, .Iin' the fir-t" place, the steadily mi-reasinmg.:,'-i
Ui:ited States commitments: all- over the- world .pashed- th .;
.Sibbe~an question ipto '.the -.back .groud .;" Ii the-:seOid.
'e!-: itW as) 'clear after the war over'. :he :Negr .the 1
,..tl t '-did-n t-p rpose to. l., my
.. .." : .. ; . k ..'4 :' -:.. '; .. ." .;- 'L o:: . .






Slegs to be tied down. Therefore, having failed -in ,itsi
efforts to dismiss mq, the Commuiasion resorted' to QtbEr,
tactics. In appointing the first Deputy Chairnian df t 1:
SResearch Council, 1 as a West Indian who know the West-
Indies was passed over for a- British representative Wh(d
knew nothing about tbhm. He was a retired officer fromI'
Sth administrative service in an African te0'ritory, and 'wis
a sick"man wbo within a year and a half had.to be inva.
!lided out of the service. .He had just stopped off iij
SWahington 6n his way home to say bell' to my superior
officer, a former colleague of his, and landed a job in tbhe
West Indi~s. It was in protest against this discrimination
that I resigned from the Commission.

Bnt, as 1 have indicated above, my resignation wae,
immediately followed by my appointment as.a: consultant
remaining ii Washington. Despite consistent.; Britishl-".
I opposition, my Washington branch office was givef in.i.-ai-
S.ing responsibility until I.was working full time for th':
Commission over 'and above my' duties at Howard Univr-.'-
sity. I was able to do this by working nights and wee4k,.
S ends. .. '

S The Washington office lasted from.September 194,
S.-: 'o May 1948. The Secretary General.then proposed to .tbe,
S.pmmission that I be appointed to take cha re '-f -its -r*ft.
Search .activities in Trinidad. Opposition, to my' appo-..
'ment came from the Dutch; it was obvious thai they
were merely pulling the chestnuts out of the, fire- for.the.,
British, who *ere handicapped by the fact that the B'rit"'
ish West Indian representatives on the Commission.gii- .
me strong support. Eventually a compromise was reached&
I was appointed to act for.six months-in the- post ofp'"i
puty Chairman of the Caribbean Research- Outriicil,. [i'
Sthe understanding that a final decision would be maiL
at the next meeting of the Commissiot. The .Dutch'.p"
SChairman angrily complained in my presence ,that .ti'
SdeciSion was asgood as giving me the job th.an hd tb7h ,

It was absolutely necessary, therefore, to find .m0 ,
Spl asible reason for getting me. dut. l'bhe ommnisi"
S picked upon communism. -

S The fll significance of .the .acousBtion ca. oin
2t:,',
i'=,' :.,. .: '? '';., : '. i .'. :' "., "" ',-. "''. ;.,."- :". ,:,; .:




-- 33

appreciated in the light of certain f.-cts. Shortly after the
entry of the United States int.) World War II, 1 learned
thot the entire faculty of the Division of Social Sciences of
Howard University had been summoned to the Depirt-
ment of Justice for questioning. But I was not called in:
On June 19, 1942 1 was advised by one of the most im-
portant wartime deuartuenits of the United States Govern-
ment, the Office of Strategic Services, that I had been
appointed a consult.aut ti. prepare a brochure on the Carib-
bean for the use of United States troops to be sent there,
subject to a favoiurable report of the.character investiga-
tion which was then being made by the United Sta.tes
Civil Service Commission, I l~ter received a copy of a
communication from the Civil Service Commission to the
Office of Strategic Services, dated November 6, 1942, ad-
vising that investigation, without finger print clearance,
had disclosed nothing reflecting unfavourably on my suit-
ability.

No similar eC'iumnic.ition W;L. addreised tL me when
I was appointed full time to the Anglo-American Carib-
bean Commission. But the appointment it-elf, wbich
placed me for a while on the State Depart.meit's payroll,
obviously proved that I WdS not unsuitable.

When, therefore, the charge was made against me in
December 1948 chat I wa? a communist, ir. was clear that
it was merely. an attempt to evade the- crucial issue then
pending, whether I wa- to be routiimm-d in the post of De-
puty Chairman of the Research Council. The charge was
based ona- sentence wh\ h was included in a documerit
prepared for the third session of the -West Indian Confer-
ence in Guadeloupe, in which I had, on the suggestion of
the Secretary Geqeral, incorporated a letter I had written
to him some ioanhs before from Washington. qver-
whelmed with world, and forgetting that it was a confi-
dential letter, I had merely given instructions to get the
letter out of the files and quote it in the document; I had
dot even proofread the document. The. sentence made
some reference to the abolition of private property. The J
.Commission decided not to confirm me in my. post, peard- "
ing investigation, I had never had any connection what-
oeyer with -any political ..organisation ataJl'i,,: cepir'that
..,at.,Oford I h.ad atteoaded regularly .meetings of -the Indnian r
i i. .. : - M .-. ,*.:.. i. .




34

nationalist students in their club, the Majliss., So I re-.
fased to fall for the bait and. resign in. disgust. A few-
ronths later L was advised privately that. the F. B L in
the. United States had cleared, me completely of. all sus-
Spicion, The British endeavoured unsuccessfully, as. I
Learned from friends, to persuade another British West
Indian,, of whon they were sure, to take my. po-t. He was
a. lawyer, who knew nothing of research, and ha declined
the post.

Consequently. in June 1949 my appoiu.tment, wqs
oahfirmed without any fuss and I was given a. five-year
contract. This explains how I tra.vellF4 freely awadi with-
out hindrance in. United States territory. Immediately
after the conference-I visited the U.S.A. on.official d. ty' in
Januainy 1949, 1 then. went to the. Virgin. Islands- in De.
member 1949 for a. meeting of the Commission, Puerto
Rico in March 1950 as the Secretaiiat's representative at;
a Conference, the U.S A. in September 1950 on six months
leave, and Puerto Rico in April 1952 on official duty.
Every time I tiavelledon re-entry permits, issued by the
Department of J.ustice df the U.S&A. I was never once
challenged, questioned, or denied. entry.

That the charge was not taken seriously-even by thbse
who made it. is iJiustrated by. an attempt made by some
British. West Indians. to lure me away- fiiom the Commis-
sion to. the: post, which had shortly before been, created
hut not filled, a( Ec,nomic; Adviser to the Government of
Tri.nidad, and Tobago. L declined. the offer,, as would, de-
cline it today, ,oa two ground 1 -am. not, an economist,
.ad. I do not wjeh to, be a. civil servant,. In, addition,. i.n
1948 no leas, than in, 1945, I did not want, to Cru from
tbhe enemy.

But, the most. amusing part of the store' Qcoaneated
with, this aceueleti.: of oommjnism comes, from Trinidad
itself, No. long aften my, permanent appointman"., I
delivered a. lecture at the: public. Library. o (nmComunisim,
ap one of aNaeries, of, twelve lectures on, the dev,elaRmfent
ofi Western, oivilisation. The following day. I recej ed'.
talaehwna. aodl from a, coesain, government, department, 1
waa tbald. thai someone, ut ao- interest .in the s~ ujeQt",.,Vas
wamBred hiad, taJen. donw thel, Iactwu .ain qber4h -id, i'






u. uu iyplu up auu was cons uerea so excellene tbnat t e depart-
..ment wanted my permission to use it in the government's
anti-communist drive. i wondered what the Governor and
planters of the Leeward Islands or even Mr. X would
have thought. But I objected strongly to this attempt to
take my views out of their context, to select one lecture
only for publication, and to link me up with police mea-
sures, and I warned the department in the strongest terms
of. what would happen if it published the lecture. It did
not do so. I wonder what whisper was begun about me then.

Throughout all these struggles and intrigues I had one
enormous. advantage-'the unflinching support of Mr.
SNorman, Manley and the Puerto Ricans associated with
the work of he Commission, that is to say, the two most
i.iportan& democratic and nationalistic parties in the Carib-
bean, the People's National Party of Jamaica and the
Populares Party of Puerto Rico. It is the power of-.thee
-people that the imperialists fear' moat,

I met Norman Manley for the first time in 1944.
Since then we have ber'n the closest of.friends. He con-
gratulated me on my first appointment and agreed that 1-
had acted wisely in seeking it. In 1947, when B deter-
Smined effort was made to clo-e down my Washington
branch -office, it was Norman Manley who defeated. it.
About the same time the President of Howard'University
requested ume, together with other members of the faculty,
to make-a nomination of some prominent West Indian- or
Latin American- personality for the honorary degree of
Doctor of Laws,. ai the University wished to show public-
ly its interest in both areas. I nominated Norman Man-
.ley, My colleagues made other. n'minatiods.. but the
President, who was himself fully conversant with Manley's
S'work and prestige, and who then had .over 300 British
SWest -Indian students, a ..the University,.:. accepted. my
Snomination,- and an address given by. Manley to the .stu-
dents and faculty was one of the .greatest: occasionsg, dur-
ii.'ng my long connection. with. Howard. ..In 1948': : anlley;
Sledd the fight for my _appoi tmeihta .Deputy, Chairnpma ui of
ithe Research council desoribi bg.meil nea:the:a.mo~ koiaw- :
ledgeable, man. -in :the. Wes ridiesa. :In.I949 i..iease. l
v'wit h himn' the charge ofo ommunsmiis.:- i' b :'4 nl~~a het ,
. N .. ,.. J ' ? '
'' ,i ;:' ,., ": (: .: '.;. :: :"i H .- .:,:: :'.: .-( .7 .." .=.:...':z-:A : : ,






obuai lUIr bIUtl OJUlUUlo. JU iUUA Mu .rLUa VTrc" UUlMU uLu.--
ference in Jamaica he publicly praised the .principal dodq'.
meant which had been prepared by me. I told hig aebdo"ii'
the difficulties in the Secretariat when I ;-aw him 'iati
last year in Jamaica. As late as March of this y~ir..
when I again discussed the situation with him -during the
Immigration Copference held here in Port-of-Spain, -.1ei;
advised me to stay with the Commission gs long -.as
possible.

The Puerto Rican members of the Conmmission ddjso
supported me unhesitatingly in my struggle for i urvivail.
They continued the .fight for the maintenance of, ni
Washington branch office where Manely .eft .off. *T,.he'y
supported Manley in his, fight for my .apbintm.ent, al!;
in his absence, at the 19.48 West Indian GOonfere.fibe,
insisted that the charge of cotndiunihm be jivestigah`ed,
* and urged me not to walk out in disgust. .The pubiib
Rican- delegates to the conference told me t hat -hey .:i
positively refused to agree to a proposal that the ci.iq
ference-that is to say, the West Indian p6liticians--shoild
denouboe me as a communists. Twice in the -that year tiie
Puerto iticans worked out with me a -programme of Cari~-i
bean' research which I would ..be invited to undertil:
at the University of Puerto Rico :if I were dismisesi b.:.
the commission, about the .very time-when .the. Britiif
West Indian University Cdllege was confident thatt.:
could fihd a better man than I. -..

I was also strongly supported at Hal times by ti:
various Amerioan Negroes .ho served on the Commission".

Another powerful weapon which I dangled. over. t
hbadi of .my British opponents. ,as the Br ti i Lia aii
Party. The personal opposition to me eiver a: pe iod-f
time of the. Colonial Attacheat. the Britishi: Emib W :
Washingtap; who was one ,of thfe. Bsictish ..ommisil
because so. serious that bnce- when.: IIained,: i.tAlh~
Orohb JTons,- .the Labo:r icretary:'o fStatefri
oIo ies;. was' it..N.ew -York, attending a mee.ig.t:fif ,
Udiied Nations, I wrote ,oo hiin irequatisting niitne%3i
UnirdtunIately hbe ha% dejairted before my l;]este rjaa1 h
S. him; bUte he, wrote ine from .-Lndo~.saying~::t'h i
:. i.::. U
.. lkf . : : I .-to v..4 q i






*-u wvu wunu WavUa4 uvuiuuu u L A WUUlU UIbVV UBIJSL
Mr. Creech Jones for an assurance that I would not be
disqualified from making my contribution to the coin-
mission, merely because my views did not coincide with
those of hidebound conservatives in the British Colonial
service and were quite .close to those of the Labour Party.
He -turned yellow and trembled in every limb. During
the conference at which I was accused of being a com-
munist, I asked the British Co-Chairman what reply he
would make to his boss, Mr. Creech Jones, if he were
askedd whether. he did not know that. the sentence held
against me was not communism at all, but very gond'
socialistr. He remained silent. It was- with Mr. Creech
Jones himself that Norman. Manley took.. up my case,
When I was in London last year attending-the London
ciiference on GATT, I discussed the difficulties which
fad arisen -in the Secretariat with one of the highest
officials of the Labour Party. It is of the utmost sign.
fioace that my.successful struggle to save my job over
.ozhe Negro in the Caribbean was. fought in. the context
of the British Labour Party's. victory. in the .1946 elections,
while 1 received the official notification of-the. Commis-
in 'sa decision not to renew my contract on: the -very day
Oi Lab'our Party was defeated in the: 1955 elections.

.:.- I mst turn now to the difficulties- in the' Secretaria.
j:J st prior .o my taking up, my -appoi-tijept in Tri-
-idad 'in -1948, .the: Secretariat .was in.the .middle of .an
ph'evasl-inv.olving a serious -conflict.ibJet-w.e! n the- Ameri- ..
oen Secretar'y. General and a`l, hisp senio: officers,, includ,-
ing ;.tbe. Bri-tish Deputy Ghairman of the- Research Council.
j6'e Conmmission -appointed a:- one-mean co mission "of in-
1 ,ry.-..froi 1 the,- Colonial Office. :W-ha hs rep-ort con-- '
in6ed 1-: -.do hnot know;.it Was ~eeiir.-phbliahed. ,Bu.t it
'wa K-i~nem1mo'n 'k.o.wedge tha t .~ -: om iissionw -reasedM. _::
ithi the research se.etion -.of the .SecretHriaiat -was .,
;iiiportat than' 'the .administrative', aad b-hait thp Secretary
a:nera1 ~-bhoul'd -in futu'rh-se h some isearoh.' -.expeienee ..e ;
aiefle as. admimistraTtive. ~The SoScrar ,eerall im eliep f ,e.,:.ien
tIf'^ne in -~. bst "bitter- t ea t" at 'ih '" heep : ; e "':.
E WA, W.. ;, '- . -: . . "
: { -J ,' -. .: : "- -. ., .., .- r '. '. "...- . -.. "'? .. :p. -. ,.:W-'.,:






decision at the very meeting at which I was appointed -to:
act as Deputy Chairman of the Research Council. It very
clearly and precisely prescribed the functions of the De-
puty Chairman, and- stated that he should, under the
Secretary General, be the principal officer for all research
activity of the Commission and should devote his full-
time to research work. Norman Manley, the leading
figure in this reorganization, told me at the *end of the
meeting that it would in future be- impossible for the
Secretary General, to interfere with me as Deputy Chair-
man of the Research Council. A year later the Comr-
mission underlined this new arrangement, by equalising'
the salaries and rank of the three Senior Officers under the
Secretary General, thereby entitling me as Deputy Chair-
man to the privileges and irmunities accorded up to then
only to the Secretary General and the Deputy Secietary
General by the Trinidad government.

A Dutch S;cretary General replaced the outgoing Am-
erican at the beginning of 1952. Our relations from the;
very outset are indicated by the fact that, within-three
months of his arrival. I found myself obliged to tell hinm'
that if he had been appointed for the purpose of getting mie:
out of- the Secretariat, he would have done exactly what.
he had been doing. After thbt the situation steadily de-_
teriorated and matters went from bad to worse.

We were preparing for a session of the West Indian
Conference held in Jamaica at the end of the-year; it was
-rumoured that the European governments were determined
to-close down the-Commission. I assumed personal re.
sponsibility for the principal document, an appraisal of their
-work of previous sessions of the conference. Over and
above this I was assigned by the Secretary General fi.e
other papers, -one of which was his own report to the four
governments; they -had not been done properly either :b'Y,
the staff member responsible for them or the authors ouf
side the Secretariat, I also had to perform the adminiMi
trative duties of the Deputy Secretary General who. w'
on leave for some months, and of the Secretary Geeru, e
who went on tour for a period. It was very fortune ai
for me that their duties are not particularly onerous, ;
- overtime work was excessive for every three honu
: normal work for which I was paidmy .sala.r.in ...,i
. .. ..'.-...: -, :'. .. ,.,: .. ,.."- '::: .i. i: :;'- '.:. : : : : : .' '. : :g







sion two hours of overtime free.

:--.:" Notwithstanding all my work for the'conference the
Secretary General wished to. keep me away from it. There
.is a,Commission regulation to the effect that authors
,of papers must. attend conferences to defend their views
a nd assist the delegates in their deliberations. I asked
:.himwhether the author of one paper must attend whilst
...tnoe author of six papers must stay away, He then wich.
S.drew his opposition, and: after more pressure from me,
7--decided that I should attend also the Commission meet-
i.-ng which followed the conference.

My work at the conference was as- heavy asr my ."
-work -bfore the 'conference, which was quite astonishing
id view of the fact that I was to have been left out. I
'was assigned by the Secretary General to work with one
':.Pf the three conference committees, to coordinate the re-
-ports .of tbe,three committee into a single. conference re-
:port, and to work with ohe of the three committees of
.&'lthe Commission to which the conference recommendations
:-.w ere-aissigned for. consideration,. At this committee meet-
'ng 1i proposed a particular-method of handling the large
number''of. recommeudattion.- The committee- was so im-
i'pressed that. it requested me to repeat iumy proposal to the
C' Commission in plenary seBssiion. I did .so, and the Com-
m..ission. accepted m y proposals --without amendment.
'Thereafter, however, some doubt was expressed as to .the
i:--Secretariat's ability, to 'cope with the heavy workload
.:-btailed,: The eeeretary General,. after consulting me,
A,i~iked thb6 Com mission to atlbw me, as the officer in charge
-o;:f bthb. section of the, office on which. the work would
fprircipally .fall, to expl.inr" 'how tbhe' Secretariat could.
-. haTdle it. The Commission aepd ':e-tedmrypropoaals, which
-had'- previouafly cleared' with the. SeeretSay: General,
i:-"thut amieidm ent The ae lere tb.e: proposals''oU' which
.ho.ib tte,' enfre:Seoetat rogram e fft 19 3 a'd
954 s babed. :. '
'.te :.co ifere'.v.i. fior .mea resd int p l







of the previous sessions of the- conference : he told .me
that he had written officially to the Secretary General.
Coming as it did from the man who had taken the lead
in refusing to confirm me in my post in 1948 on the
ground that I was a communist, this was uo idle praise.
Another United States Commissioner greeted me most
enthusiastically at the Conference, explaining that after
my apprai.-al there would be no difficulty in getting hi's
government to vote the annual appropriations for the
Commission. The Conference itself included in its report
the following commendation of the apprais-il proposed by
Robert Bradshaw. the delegate for St. Kitts-Nevis:

*-The Conference commended the Deputy Chair-
man of the Caribbean Reseaioh Council and 'his
colleagues on the Secretariat's staff for the pains.
taking research involved in the preparation of this
full and extremely enlightening report. which is of
valuable assistance not only to participants in the
Conference but to the -Member Governments, the
Governments of the countries served by the Corn-.
mission and all those interested ini the work of the
Commission. The Conference further recorded Ift-
high appreciation, personally, of Dr Eric Willt~.ns,
Deputy Chairman of the Caribbean Research Coun-
cil. for the elevated standard of the work contained;
in the appraisal and its general clarity.

The Conference also commended the high quality.. the
form of presentation and the conciseness of the report.
of the Secretary General which I had prepared.

At the Commission meeting each of the four Natioa..l
Sections, one after the other. complimented me publicly
on the proposal I had presented regarding the action ..,o
be. taken on the conference recommendations. The chair-
man of the British Section suggested fhat, as the;greatest
compliment to me, the first part of- my proposal shoiild
be taken on trust, and, one of my personal friends on the:"
Commission, the Leeward Islands lawyer to whom JIhaii
already referred, told- me later that the Chairmani ,h e
...said to him that he did not know. how. I had.: doel it
Sad, sounded like a .gramqphonerecord ,
. ', ,M. . ";, .
. .._






Srter compnmeoaea me again on tme lucidity with which
I hbd presented the Secretariat's work programme, and on
the assistance I had rendered in enabling it to complete its
work so quickly. I left the meeting with my friend's sLero
warning ringing in my ears-look out for jealousy. It
qwas no idli warning. One of the United St:tes advisers
bad asked me, in the presence of the Deputy Secretary
General, what sort of Secretary General we had who needed
to call on a subordinate to outline the Secretariat's
programme.

I returned to Trinidad to equally heavy responsibili.
ties. I had to prepare the. Conference report for publi-
cation, to pilot its recommendations bbrough the Research
CoT:ncil and its Committees, to help lay the foundations
for a future conference, and to advise the Secretary Gen-
eral so meticulously on modifications in the work pro-
gramme for the Commission's approvall that he asked me
to dictate even the language and took it down word for
word, urging me more than once not to go too fast.
Theri I went to Europe on long leave for a little over
five months, the Secretary General taking charge of the
research department in my absence. My leave was in-
terrupted, at the Secretary General's request, to prepare
drafts of letters to various people about action entailed
in preparations for a conference on education and small
scale farming, to consult with the United Nations Educa-
t'naal, Social and culturall Organisation in Paris about
tie availability of the expert to assist in the work for
the conference, to visit in Mexico a Unesco project for
smmu3unity education. and assess its relevance for West -
Indian conditions, and to hold discussions .,with. Unesco's
sti;u American Office in. Cuba regarding collaboration
Sbetwaan the Commiesion and U.aso,.

I was called back from my leave ahead ofi time. to :
, attend a. meeting of the Qom eission to VTriiiad. At
SjAbe opening session the Duitch Co-Chairman paia'piblic
iabntaetp the fact that the trade promotiotio. 'conference
Schedhteuled for the following ear was r i hgpod baid, a, ne,
whose services to the dom. iission, he ade 'I4eweryo:ne
appreciated. Th6 mee~tlg:: 'milimen ttd both gere"i
tryi ere r ~. .d nya. ik ea- :e i-id a. iar-~ :en-.:
~ ~ '-li'^l ^^ ,^ :-**:;* ;;".;;^






UU ICUCVVCU Iu l I IY J3 0n1 yCaLu L ULsLIu I LtAt tu C *J tL4tLitfcuti,
had ascertained that I. was willing to accept. The'Chair:'
men of,two National Sections congratulated me private y
on my decision to remain .with the Commission. 'Jhis
was in December, 1953. ::

There followed another period of heavy overtime work,
for the trade promotion conference. The introductory
paper was written by me, and most of the other p.ipers
were written by members of my research staff. We were
complimented on all sides, publicly and privately,'some-of
the warmest praise being reserved for my own conSribii.
tion.

A few days later the Dutch Co-Chairman came .to"
see mp, to say goodbye, as he had been promoted to.-a
new post back home. We had a common interest in
West Indian hist'cry and had been on quite friendly terlni
for some years. Two hours alter his departure. I receivedj
a memorandum from the Secretary. General,. replying to~
-one of mine in which I had drawn his attention to the.
excessive overtime being .worked by -my researobh staff
The memorandum criticised me for the delay in getting
out conference documentation, and stated that I sliho u
not be writing papers at all but should be planning -the
work of my staff and guiding them in it. -

To say that [ was flabbergasted is to put my.reactioi
mildly, I wrote a long memorandum-id reply based oi6`t4j'
following points:
(1) I did not see how conference documentation -oonld
be expedited if 1. passed on to my already overworked :stok f
work which I was not only best qualified to do; but w*vMi:
itself could be completed by me only-on an overtime baisl
(2) I could not understand why he should criticise zni-in,
April 19~ for writing, papers for conferences When throug'i
out. 1952 he had himself time and again assigned" to'::m
papers which were the respOnsibility :of other' staff i
bers or persons outside the Secretariat; and.: wheh nonI
mnontW before he would have passed on- yet .another: 'pWei
i if Ihad' not- bad the sense to decline. '.,,.
S.(3) Itieemed to.me.that there d.W~- Waotiig-w g
i ^tiog: paper for of e q9ith:o gb.,
-' .',-y-
t -M ... ..... ...






;:uieraucaturou .u[upaLr IutLeu:- UU' morte lunu iI WU.iu ,Ue wrong
-fori tihe head of a university department to give lectures or
theb head surgeon in a hospital to perform operations.

-(4) Since the Secretary General felt so strongly about the
-matter, I proposed, even though I disagreed with him, to
Turn -over to members of my staff two papers which he
;sand-.l had previadusly agreed that I should write for the
conference. on education and small scale farming.

'(5), In any case the Commission had laid down that I
-was in charge of the Secretariat's research activities and
-:haId specifically .included in my personal responsibilities
such things as the preparation of documentation. I took
.'the view, therefore,tbhat as I had told him a year pie-
.iously under. somewhat similar conditions, if the Cow-
jission's regulations were to be changed, they should be
cha iged by the Commission.

Notwithstanding his criticism of me for writing papers,
"the Secretary General replied that I must. continue to
b.ecepe- responsibility for the two papers for the conference'
l'terini tha. yeai"t. but :agreed that the matter should be put
'ri-h rhe-Commission for' decision. He expressed regret .that
.i 1 as not going--to be. in attendance at the Commission
.eeting. .

'- .,'The, next thing I-knew was that I-was. handed a
A"i:'~Ptfrom the four :.hairmen-of the. Commission in May
I:'-954 6.dvising.:me that the Secretary General .had reported
.6tf' Be difficulties in .. he-.Secretariat, -tha they did not
.Wisilfr .enter intb-any.discussion .iofthe cooflicting.views,
'nififPthe Secretary General was the officer responsible for
fiin'iig. the Secretaria 'andd responsible only to the Com-
|1fi.ip.,; that it was likely wthat- the' rsegrch activities of the
fTi&riat:. wouldbe.:; retpraise; in;.th'e-. revision of the .
"Agreemjent :establishing the.:lOmmjidsi6n .thnl ufider cdinid-.,
"erati o, an.gd that, acardin "gl:. :t i- had' in-twicted- the-::.
,i1106-atUy GeneraId o-.reiewmyoni^ traoifor od-e er. The
was, sig n ..by' : hbiei;b .he 2ei men.wh. had: ed
l SyEea ppoi itm nt fb i tivjearw xi fith S:et ile
I;Rip ibd
lali~~Jj~ ji ~ .r







riatb That is the higb-handed manner in- which these.
democratic governments operate. In 1945 a governor r.
wrote a letter and the Anglo-American Caribbean Com-
mission rushed to his support. In 1954 the Secretary
General held a private chat and the Caribbean Commib-
sion rushed to his support.

In reply, I sent a memorandum to the Co-Chairmen
making various points, -s follows:
(1) I had coudocted myself throughout on the basis. of
an organisation specifically laid down by the Commission,
which the Co-Chairmen had refused to take into consider-.
ation. That was to punish a man for following coustitu-
tional procedures.
(2) I had been condemned in my absence, without a hear- -
ing, merely on the basis of a report by'one of- he parties-to
the cause, whose charges were not even stated so that I
could have an opportunity to reply to them.
S(3) 1 was at a loss to understand how an employee oeuld.
be considered an asset in December 195.3 and a liability..
in May 1954.
I concluded my memorandum asfollows; -
"It will not be possible for people to reconcile
my role in the adult education: movement with the.
dismissal by an organisation established 'to, promote
regional cooperation in the Caribbean of tbe-v ery
person who has made the study of: West -Indian
affairs the exclusive concern of his ddult lifej'ind.
who is, in some..eyes, 'Mr. Caribbean.' I' I'owfll.
Necessarily have to defend myself i -do not-,see-
how the Commission's-.prestige would.ibe en hanred
thereby or, its, possibilities: of service to .the: ai ea
improved.',
SAa. subsequont.meetingof.the.Commiisio.nj whi6h w .s.
held in Trinidade, all-that 1i learned of .the- charges agaiti.
-.me.. was that., beingalways very busy I kept. papersailtc 1.g
Time .on .my desk, and--that, having, a,.notomousib ly:bi t. e
:. per,,. ;would send :interoffice communications, 'i ai.
, : i polite withou-t bi.aling them-Tniu- on elopesl e, ^, eiipa N
.: C "P.. Y. .. W in `4' ,
.- " ... "-7.. .. 2 "' ". .,.; .. .::. .. :, ,r .






..ua.a wMa t il Uu ItLUUU)-r, I waS uaLppy IO OB aDie T0 give an
'assurance that it would not happen again.
This was seized upon as the basis of another comn
i::iiaation to m, this time in consultation with t.h "
.Cormmissior, advising me ttat the question of my contract
would be deferred to the next meeting of the Commission,
when it would be considered in -the light of the assur-
.,ance I bad given regarding cooperation. One of the Com-
m:,issioners whom 1 Inew, i British West Indian asked
';te privately: "If the man wants to run the Secretariat
h:is .-a', why not--leave him alone? What's all the fuss
aboutut?' [ realized then what I was up against. This
so-cialled representative of the British West Indian people
-is a mao complete-ly rejected by the electorate in his
iownd territory.- He, like maoy others, is our representa-
^-ti:e right enough, but only of the stooges in our midst.

i- There the matter ended', with my doing what I was
..tbld to.do, but the work of une man and not four men, as
i.'previously, until I was notified by a friend of mine who
a.:ttlendrd the-recent conference in Puerto Rico that he had
.been 'old by a meruber of the Tiinidad delegation that I
h ~ad been .fired by the Commission.. Tiirty hours later I
,;-received. official confirmation -that the Commission, meet-.
fing. in secret -session,-bad decided 'unanimously Lhat my
eic tra:rat would not be renewed -when it expired. It ex-
pired a-t four' oclook this aftanodon.
You, see -what alli- this- ieanq,; don't you? In 1947,
i.Tbe Secre;tar~y' General an Anierican, found himself in- "
-vo1ved in a.:'ftiict with. tbeDepu(ty Chairman of the bBr-.::
s'i'eaoh. Counc3Cil,: a'ri Ekpglis ibmari, What does -the Com- -
: miisdion do? : It' appoints s'-'iindepenident commissioner. to.
Anvestigite a the .. mci-tler,' wh )7ques tios everybodydy, after.
w'bi.ih; it proceeds-ot'i -redtie.v i.he Scretary- Gedneral', power. .^
.04i, the S'ec.ret.r G-e:ra, a Dhtchbmin;.-i found- liim-
'lf iniioved in 1: onf licd it th.eD pai Chaimn :an::f
ahiResedeh C '""ncil'" a We s" n n-'.Wh '* "d.s e
.b0 ioi 4?d.'1 : .dos n 1~ co is jt~

-ete t 4Jeii*''' .t l-n's
-K..j a yt. 0 ~jd4`Utjt
MilMMEM





Inaitn,*.asna sJmply ~ ires-nlmi. iNeea i say more, .uslesa 4i;.
Gentlemen ? I shall ot insult your intelligence. YTowu
know, each and every one of you, that we West Indiai.:
are the last to be hired and the first to be fired, in all
, positions and not only in the one such as that Irum which,
thank Heaven, I have now departed, never, never to. re-
turn, with the Comwrission's appreciation of my servi.oe.
conveyed to me through the Secretary General who sad-.
cessfully intrigued against me.

I doi't care a tinker's damn for the Cowmmiior,'s ap:
preciation. I take away something far mure valuable--tbe.
_appreciation of my junior colleagues. 1 received a simple'
note yesterday which reads: "With all best wishes." It
was signed by 55 staff members, 51 of them West Indian.:
the remaining four non-West Indian. The list of Wu.at
Indian n-ames includes white and black, Ghinesp and Indiai,.
Iightskinned and darkskinned, some whom I had inyselfe
recommended for appointment, others wbose appointment"
it- had fallen to my lot to approve, one or two whoin it hLad :
been necessary for me to reprimand, and many who b-id
come to me at one time or another for assistance and giiid-.
rince with'the pressures they faced. My mind went baindk
to the days when I worked them to the bonf, 'and they.
worked ungrudgingly because they all knew that if. I
worked them till midnight, I worked myself till two in
the morning. My mind went buck also to the". Frenchci
-expert brought down to survey industrial development,..
who, over his whiskies at the Queen's Park Hotel,
told me with one sip that the West Indian was lIzv,i
Sand with the other that in this wretched climate hbe could-d
.mot even work three .hours a day. I thought of the..,
differences I .had had with some of the staff, bitter and,;.
s: harp at time, but which. we .submerged in our work for ''
Sthe cnamnmon cause. I fel then the'onl ypaing of regret-
S- feel at leaving the Commission, that I .shall no. lou.ur
b. e ~eotineed with a group of peopJe who, at ..the heigh
iof their ,morale .some years ago, achieved feats which i.:?
: other m group anywhere in .the world could exceed, until I ~:
- remembered that this unity of races, colours aipd religion': i
Sin work ;of little meaning. is pregnant with possibilities fQr,
the future welfait of the ,British West Indies. t :ave
...alw~iFs kniwn that me West Indians "have all .tlie c8IlelA
Ei we need to improvee .purseilves; I lbarPed ifta .pr
i ..' .. . . .
4 NN.::
NZ







anid the research workers at the Commission that we rlso
have the necessary spirit. The names of'my non-West
Indian well-wishers, all below the level of policy making in
the Secretariat, reminded me of something equally im-
portant. Two are English, one French, one American;
one has been here so long that it is difficult to think* of
him as anything but a West Indian ; the others are playing
an important and constructive part in the cultural life of
Trinidad. Their association with my West Indian colleagues
I deeply appreciate, not only in itself, but also because it
shows that, in our struggle for improvement, we can count
on assistance from many non-West Indians in our midst,
not offered on the basis of master and servant relation-
ship. All foreigners, Ladies and Geutlemen, are not
imperialists.
'
*
That is the story of my relations with the Caribbean
Commission and its predecessor extending over twelve and
a quarter years. I have told it for two reasons. The first
is to clear my name and reputation from any amputations
of inefficiency or failure or 'factious opposition or disloyal-
ty .to which the termination of service of a public servant
frequently gives rise. The second is that tbe issues ire
not personal but political; they involve not a single indi-
vidualt ; but the West Indian people.

.Even in the Commission's Secretariat .mine was not
a in dividual case. In one department notorious for its
changes .of imported staff, a white West Indian acted as
its head.fb.r a longer period than the combined service of
thtee outside officerss: the first. Secretary General positive- .
ylrefused to appoint him to the post, and he designed in
disgust. The second Secretary General once complained o
~r;athat a West Indian subordinate io the sal.ure .depart-
ment was too ambitious-; -he had applied for the post of
'Ead :.of.-the department within: a few t.otths df his ap-..
Sointment.. But why shouldri'tihe .? One .Americai officer..
appointed by the American Secretary Genieral. had lasted ,:
iiree thbs; a ditch::su.nqesaor appointed by Jhee Dutch
eeet -eeal .had:las ted ghd. only

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Sbead of another department, Li non. West Indian, bad threat-
ened to resign. 1 replied :."So what ? Appoint his deputy;!:
The deputy was % West Indian: all similar posts inthe
government of Triniddad and Tobago are held by West''
IndianF. The Secretary -Gene al refused: instead be persur'd- i
ed the non-West Indian to stay. His predecessor once asked
me if I would agree to take a a statistician a British official':
whose contract in Trinidad bad expired. The officer's jobj
had nothing to do with statistics and the Secretary Gen-:.:
eral knew it. I refused to agree, and insisted that if he
wished to make the appouitmeot, be ust .do so on-hisl-
own responsibility. The result was I found myself saddled
with a French statistician, imported all the -way fro ,
France. One could not even understand the man,-and-j~o
I left him to his own devices for several months. Whfeni
I gottired of his inactivity.. I burned the -heat on. Hfe
got a nervous breakdown and had to be repatriated. --In,
twelve months he had done nothing ; be had drawn bhis,
salary and got a free holiday in Trinidad, with' a [famil-'
arisation tour to the French territories thrown in hy.way!
of "lariiappe". A Duuch official was appointed to my -sbtff,
over my protests, precisely because he was .related'--b
marriage to one of the Co-Chairmen. As a colleaguetie
was insufferable. What other term -can 'I use. for- a.:Lii
who asked a West Indian typist to type a letter in..-whbi
he said' ttat every titmi he walked down: Frederick- Street"
on a Saturday morning be. was conscious of the inherenfi]
superiority of the whi~e raci .. We in the Secretariat
were painfully conscioufs of ;is inferiority. H -is work wasi
absolutely worthies-s, and I had to- transfer a part of ittJ:
a Jamaican economist whos'a appointment I had to piies.
for over a year before I could get favourable action o[.1ii
though I had interviewed the candidate ,-myself. ~iTh.
Jamaican's salary was more than one. quarter less :tEi1;
the Dutchman's yet when be asked;for equalisation-of1L;i
salary with that ,of the officer whose work was trahnsfe6M'
to bim, his claim was rejected,: even though i:.-waLssu.
ported by me as the head cf the .departiment.'..-
That is the Caribbean Commission. i T]eu.go .
.ments vote about half a mril liopu '.llars a year ~,i.l -
keep and in keturna .thefjobi^ goto, i4
.. my Washingtobn brariot 'fi .. i
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..".. p- Y vu u utwuu- i | tAJAJCL.ILSB lCLU UE trllUY)
'ed at the Commission ; in Trinidad I got sick and tired of
hearing Americans talk about the amount of money voted
.by the United States taxpayers for the Commission.. As
more and more Colonial areas shake off imperialist control,
the pressure is increased on the remaining areas of impe-
rialist influence to provide jobs for outsiders, Not the least
significant feature of the Ccmmission's decision not to
renew my.contract for another five years is that in 1956
'the contract of the present Secretary General expireP.
.According to the rule of rotation, the ntxt Secretary
General must be British or French. My claims to the
post would have been difficult to resist, if my contract as
Deputy Chairman hat been renewed.

S Wha does all this. mean to you here in Trinidad and
Tobago, Ladies and Gentlemen ? The Financial Secretary,
himself a son of the soil, who was appointed, however, only
'after public clamour, announced seven months ago that
the "Government reaffirms its declared policy of giving
preference to a local candidate provided that.he has the
'necessary qualifications, merit and experience." Only three
days ago His Excelleney the Acting Governor informed the
..Civil Service Association that federation will bring many
"opportunities but they will come to those who merit them
Most. This is admirable. But the'Caribbearn Commission
:gave exactly the same pledge. What are the necessary
qualifications for West Indians ? My relations with the
Commission make it difficult to answer the question. One
o.f the arguments used.in 1945 to try to force me out was
-that my qualifications were too high, just.aa in 1939 ,a
o-Clonial Office official had advised me that my high quali
fictions were not needed in Trinidad; yet in -every .'oe :
of the cases involving my colleagues to which 1 have jupst-
referred the discrimination against them was rationalised
6on the .ground. that their qualifications were toow' lw .! It -
iTf a. bae :of heads..the imported man-wins, -sils the-West
Wndian loses,. What sort of merit, must West lndians h ay~ ,.
Take .my own-case. : did. not haveto beg the Commpi.-
'&on for one.blasted thing. I .was placed first in 'tOhb: ir .
class for my .bachelor's degree at Oxford,; L -hv.e,,t y
:itudying.the history and. problems, of the 'WIestlndieds
4'' nih year& Wit ba` boe .oft i eog-

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; of %not having ideas about the West l'ndies -.unt-accep'r&M,
to an imported superior officer wbo knows rrbtbhig :"j
them ? Or is it the merit of not having any idt-.s at 'lJ
about anything and of expressing only those prepared f i
us-in information leafl,:ts ? And what is the experien'fii.
we need ? My own practical experience in the job frIi:'
which I have jubt been fired extends over twelve year:-
Was this too much experience or too little experiende'?I
SWhat of the man lho, after years--of experience obtaiii d
by acting in a job, is passed over for an imported bffeiail
without experience of the West Indies ? "

There is another aspect to this" question. We hba.ve-
Sheird recently a great deal about partnership. I bave frej
quently quoted this famous st'ltementtof the Secretary g`o
State for the Colonies, Colonel Stanley, made- in t"h.i
Bouse of Comwmons in 1943,, the very year in whicli
I joined the Aoglo-Arnericau Caribbean Commission.f

'"The people who will help the West Indies-i:
Sthe teacher, the- nurse, the club leader-i-must comI.:
from the West Indies, be 6f the-West Indies, uanl
Work with the West Indies,, an'd it is- u:p'n thie'
more than 'anything else that the future if-tli.
West Indies will- depend.'

I used to consider thi' statPmenrt an- official pronbui~rt'
ment on the West Indianisation'of'ourr c'ivil- setrice. .-
noit see it in a new light. Who are- the people im'tentidne
by the'Secretary of -State for the Colhnies ? Thb teiA c
the wutse, the club leieder. 'Ju-iior staff Is partPnrsKiT'
then, to 'be a partnership between European sehior s i f)arl-:'
OnlbniaJI junior staff ? Was 'tha-t the -rason wh~ twotol""-
afttfW-Colonel Stanley's speech, Mr. X'tried- to fofie m'sibitit
of th b Cornmission-? The Comnirishion has how saMiQlhr7
dist3rissing inme, thath-tere cab bfb io partnership :'etwefbt
Dt. DIf .Secr tary Qeneral and 'a WestIndiai Deputy Ait
. 'manxf -the Calibbean Research Cidn'cil. GCad we bi'er lb
forward to a pahrtaership 6bbtween.a West Indial'86 id&
eteral-'and a Ewropean.Depiity.Chaitrnm b; :; :

Wiht, kIas hatppenbh8 tio nt' ffc6ia fiotbh itbliTa
S ic e a.rine-.a .. 6 .t. e.. .. ... .
S-.7






whichh have either achieved self-government or will achieve
i.in the- very near future. It can happen only-in Trinidad
|aind- Tobago, .politically the most backward area in the
Caribbean, except for.those monuments of backwardness,
.inlartinique and Guadeloupe. Whether it is Queen's Royal
^College or.the Government Training College, the Police
Band_-or the Post Office, our local men have either to be.
cbn.tent with a bone-as a_substitute for meat or have to
seek -outside of -Trinidad what they are not allowed to find
ih: -.Trinidad. My own record with the Commission is a
never-ending story of such substitute inducements or offers,

:. .Now the latest one has come-an offer which would
.take me outside of the West Indies in a job in no way re-
la ted to fundamental West Indian problems and need,
:and--this isthe really. amusing part of it-requirinig me
t. olwork in a subordinate capacity to one of the very men
bwho sat down in secret session in Puerto Rico and decided
ihnanimously not to renew my contract with the Corn-
.imission. 1 b ve rejected the job, as I shall reject all others
fiibk it. I- was burn here., and heie-l stay, with the people
'f-.Trinid.ad and Tobago, who educated me free of charge
4ft7 nine -years at Queen's Royal College and for. five years
t..'Oxford, who have made me, whatever I am. and-who
Chaye been or might be. at any time the victims of the
i.er.y -pressures which I have been fighting against for
twelve .years.

S. A local-.newspaper, in a recent -editorial, flung in my
,face a.- quotation from Booker T. Washington with which -
I iBinded my lecture -at the Public. Library in 1944. It -
.idvised ma e to "let down my.bucket where I am, now'.
'Thenewrspaper andI-don't see eye to eyeon many things
federation, the tourist trade. West Indian. history. But
on,. this issue we do agree. For I have decided to do ex-
".Aty1-what the newspaper recommends. I am :going-to let.
iwjin:imy bucket where Iram,- no.w, right here with you :i- '
,theBi tis : West 'Indies "'
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