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Rusk B, Interview with Dean Rusk, circa 1985

Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, University of Georgia
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00:02:30 - Leaving the Rockefeller Foundation to become Secretary of State

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Partial Transcript: I suppose that had Kennedy not tagged me for Washington that I would have stayed at the foundation until retirement.

Segment Synopsis: D. Rusk discusses the factors that went into his decision to accept his appointment as Secretary of State under President Kennedy.

Keywords: John F. Kennedy; Rockefeller Foundation; Secretary of State; salary

00:07:13 - Managing operations at the Rockefeller Foundation

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Partial Transcript: Getting back to the presidency [of the Rockefeller Foundation] for a minute, you obviously had a wide range of responsibilities...

Segment Synopsis: D. Rusk talks about delegating responsibilities at the Rockefeller Foundation and managing day-to-day operations like telephone lines and travel guidelines.

Keywords: Flora Rhind; Lindsley Kimball; salaries; secretaries; secretary; telephone; transportation; travel

00:11:52 - Funding public health programs through the Rockefeller Foundation

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Partial Transcript: Doc [M.] Lambert, the doc with a million patients, who set up a medical practice there...

Segment Synopsis: D. Rusk discusses the challenges of funding public health programs internationally, such as expensive equipment and training primary care givers like mothers.

Keywords: Doc Lambert; developing nations; doctors; medicine; nurses; nursing schools

00:14:52 - Communicating across cultures

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Partial Transcript: We would have a good many things like field days where we would try to demonstrate to the local people...

Segment Synopsis: D. Rusk talks about different strategies used by the Rockefeller Foundation to introduce new products or concepts to different cultures across the globe. Specific examples include introducing hybrid corn to a region in Mexico, the spreading of hookworms in the South, and the germ theory of disease in India.

Keywords: India; Mexico; agriculture; black beans; corn; monkeys; viruses

00:23:04 - Pet leopard story

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Partial Transcript: I remember going to our Pune Virus Research Laboratory on a visit, and our doctor in charge there...

Segment Synopsis: D. Rusk talks about visiting a Rockefeller Foundation doctor in India who was keeping a pet leopard.

Keywords: New York Zoo; Pune Virus Research Laboratory; leopard

00:25:53 - Refusing to pay bribes in other countries

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Partial Transcript: The foundation made every effort to work through the existing agencies and the governments that were there.

Segment Synopsis: D. Rusk discusses the Rockefeller Foundation's policy of not paying bribes to officials in other countries and relates a story about paying officials when moving in New York City.

Keywords: Brazil; Mexico; bribery; bribes; corruption; microscope

00:29:36 - Traveling to Mexico with John D. Rockefeller, III

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Partial Transcript: It was our policy that when we took a Trustee along on a trip, the foundation would pick up the expenses of that trustee.

Segment Synopsis: D. Rusk talks about a trip to Mexico with trustee John D. Rockefeller and the challenges of being a member of the Rockefeller family.

Keywords: John D. Rockefeller; Mexico; Rockefeller Foundation; border crossing

Subjects: Rockefeller family

00:39:16 - Rockefeller Foundation aid to Hungary in 1950s

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Partial Transcript: That Hungarian aid program was kind of dramatic.

Segment Synopsis: D. Rusk discusses aspects of the Rockefeller Foundation's aid to Hungary and whether or not the U.S. encouraged Hungary to revolt against the Soviet Union.

Keywords: Hungary; Kadar; Rockefeller Foundation; communism

00:46:54 - Life in Scarsdale, N.Y.

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Partial Transcript: There was a great tradition in Scarsdale that--however important your job was in the city...

Segment Synopsis: D. Rusk and R. Rusk discuss aspects of living in Scarsdale, N.Y., including civic engagement, anti-semitism, racism, housing discrimination, and the school system.

Keywords: Scarsdale; anti-semitism; community involvement; country club; racism

00:57:07 - Congressional hearings on the tax-exempt status of private foundations

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Partial Transcript: We are continuing our interview with Dean Rusk on the Rockefeller years. And, in particular, these next questions...

Segment Synopsis: D. Rusk discusses the investigations by the Cox and Reece Subcommittees of the U.S. House of Representatives into whether or not private philanthropical foundations such as the Rockefeller Foundation should have a tax-exempt status. He also discusses how the Rockefeller Foundation tried to operate independently of political pressures.

Keywords: Congress; Cox Committee; Reece Subcomittee; Rockefeller Foundation; tax code; taxes

01:05:28 - Effects of McCarthyism and anti-communist sentiments in Congress on private foundations

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Partial Transcript: What happened to the Institute for Pacific Relations? Did they survive this period and continue to function?

Segment Synopsis: D. Rusk discusses pressures on foundations from C.I.A. director Joseph McCarthy and the House Un-American Activities Committee not to support left-wing leaning individuals and groups. In particular, he discusses the Institute of Pacific Relations and compares the blacklist put out by HUAC to the Attorney General's blacklist.

Keywords: Ford Foundation; House Un-American Activities Committee; Institute of Pacific Relations; Linus Pauling; McCarthy; McCarthyism; blacklisted; blacklists

01:22:07 - Warren Commission and the Assassination of President John F. Kennedy

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Partial Transcript: The question is, have people been satisfied over the years with the findings of the Warren Commission on the assassination of John Kennedy?

Segment Synopsis: D. Rusk discusses the findings of the Warren Commission and concludes that he has no reason to believe that a foreign government had any involvement in the assassination of JFK.

Keywords: Cuba; Cuban motive; John F. Kennedy; Lee Harvey Oswald; Warren Commission; communism; conspiracy