. . . .may be the most controversial of the many we've posted, addressing the long-time question of whether the Paris Review has had ties to the CIA. This isn't a new controversy. George Plimpton had long-term friendships with CIA types like Jock Whitney. (His father Francis T. Plimpton's record working for the government during the days of the Bay of Pigs is undeniable.) George himself acknowledged the rumors about Paris Review, without confirming or denying them, in an anniversary issue of the magazine. George and his friend Peter Matthiessen were raised at a time, in a class and milieu, when being adventurous in CIA fashion was expected and appropriate.
The essay we're presenting contains much personal testimony. The question is whether one believes the sincerity of the writer, Richard Cummings. WE DO, and present the essay for consideration by our readers in that light.
Cummings's two-part Report is noteworthy not only for its credible revelations, but also for the window it provides on the mentality of those at the highest levels of this society who believe literature is their private playground.
We made attempts to contact principals named in the article for on-the-record comments. From Paris Review we received no reply. Former Editor James Linville stated, "I don't think Richard Cummings is a fully competent journalist"-- but would say nothing else on the record. As for Peter Matthiessen, no phone numbers or web addresses for himself or his zen center in Sagaponack, New York, are listed.
(The ULA's Monday Report is at www.literaryrevolution.com.)