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Saturday, February 2, 2013

My Aunt Milly, The Spook

    This is about my Aunt Milly, my mother's sister. I think she is in the second row, second from the right, no hat, dark hair.
    I've been looking at Cuba and Iran and it occured to me that she was stationed in both places. She worked for the U.S. Department of State. I saw her rarely when I was a kid, no surprise since I never lived in Cuba or Iran. She was nice enough, but she was an adult and not really part of my world. She brought us some things from Iran. I remember a big copper tray, a copper pitcher, a couple three Persian rugs and best of all, a couple of camel saddles that we could actually sit on. I spent a little more time with her when we both lived in Phoenix. My new family and I would go over to her house for Sunday dinner on occasion. She was a little daffy by this time.
    So I did a little searching on the internet. I turned up the picture up above, and this cryptic little memo:
United States Department of State / Foreign relations of the United States, 1951. Asia and the Pacific (in two parts)(1951) Ceylon, pp. 2013-2084   PDF (27.4 MB) Page 2023

A memorandum of April 4 by Mr. Frederic G. Ranney of the Office of British Commonwealth and Northern European Affairs, addressed to the Director of that Office, Mr. G. Hayden Raynor, and to Mr. Robert D. Coe, also of that Office, read in part as follows: "I have discussed the attached telegram [telegram 4900 from London, March 13] with Miss [Mildred M.] Yenchius of SOA, who tells me that the whole question of military communication facilities in the Indian Ocean area is undergoing reconsideration in the Defense Department. It is now felt that further efforts to persuade the Ceylonese to grant us these facilities would be fruitless, in view of the fact that our negotiations have already dragged on for two years, even though the British have given us support throughout. Present thinking is to increase the establishment which the British have agreed to grant us at Aden." (711.56346E/3-1351)
Aunt Milly worked for the SOAthe School of the AmericasI didn't know that. The School of the Americas is likely the most infamous of all government agencies. Ranks right up there with the KGB. Back then the "Red Menace" was seen as a big threat. The awful things the KGB did were probably used to justify what the SOA was, and still is, doing. They changed their name is 2001 to Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation (WHINSEC). [begin sarcasm] I wonder why. [end sarcasm]

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

In that time period the Department of State did not use SOA as an acronym for "School of the Americas." Instead, it was used for the Office Southeast Asian Affairs. Specifically, it was often called NEI/SOA (Netherlands East Indies/Southeast Asia) during that period.