Walter Sterling Surrey

From SourceWatch
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Walter Sterling Surrey was an international lawyer and close associate of the American secret service who formed a close alliance with David A Morse, the legendary Director-General of the International Labor Organisation (ILO). Not long after Morse resigned from the ILO in the early 1980s, they formed a law-firm in Washington DC, Surrey & Morse, and began to work for a wide range of industries. By 1985 they had over a hundred linked lawyers worldwide.

The history of Walter Surrey illustrates how closely enmeshed were the Washington establishment of international lawyers, secret service operatives, and top corporate executives during the Cold War period. Surrey was a secret-service associate from the Second World war where he worked on diplomatic missions to Scandinavia.

David Morse had close personal relationships with Hamish Maxwell, R William Murray and Geoffrey Bible, the triumvirate who ran Philip Morris (and dominated the US tobacco industry and its lobbying activities) in the 1980s and 90s. As head of the ILO, Morse had developed labor-union and United Nations agency links worldwide. Philip Morris used the new law-firm both for its international connections, and for its willingness to engage in underhand activities.

Among many other activities, Surrey & Morse set up for Philip Morris a fake international health organisation known as the Institute for International Health & Developments which was nominally a division of the Catholic University in Washington -- but actually a tobacco industry front. This was supposedly a genuine religious-philanthropic organisation which, because of the Catholic connections, found ready acceptance in Latin America.

David Morse was the supposed 'President' of the phantom IIHD, and he worked closely with Andrew Whist, the top tobacco strategist at Philip Morris on establishing and promoting a range of pseudo-business/friendly international organisations (some of which had marginally more substance), such as Libertad, the New York Society for International Affairs (NYSIA or NYS), and American-European Community Association (ACEA). The last was set up trans-Atlantic with the cooperation of Sir David Nicholson (Chairman of Rothmans) and other prominent Tories in the UK and right-wing businessmen in Europe.

Later, Paul Dietrich, another ex-Swiss-American associate or Morse, Maxwell, Murray, and Bible joined Surrey & Morse and eventually took over these operations when Morse died. Dietrich also had CIA and Foreign Service connections through his wife, Laura Jordan Dietrich, who was the close assistant to Republican apparatchik, John Bolton. [1]

Bolton had been a lawyer with the tobacco law-firm Covington & Burling, and he had been mentored by the tobacco-friendly Senator Jesse Helms. Bolton went on to head the Republican National Committee, and hold several positions in the State Department, Justice Department, and the US Agency for International Development (USAID) under the Reagan and HW Bush administrations, and later other roles in the George W Bush administration. As Assistant secretary for International Organization Affairs at the Department of State (1989–1993) he promoted Laura Jordan Dietrich to run the human-rights side of America's United Nations functions.

On the side, Surrey, Morse and Dietrich also ran the US arm of the Catholic's Sovereign Military Order of Malta (SMOM) known as the Knights of Malta [2]. This was a favourite prestige vehicle for corporate capitalists, senior government bureaucrats and politicians, because it promoted itself as a humanitarian Order of the Catholic Church while providing high-level corporate-bureaucrat-political links, and it gave some business/philanthropic members the highly prized 'papal knighthoods'.

One of the recipients of a US knighthood, for instance, was an old associate of Surrey, William J Casey, the head of the CIA and founder of the Manhattan Institute (which also lobbied for tobacco). John Bolton was also a board member of the Manhattan Institute which ran a "junk-science" program for Philip Morris -- and he was awarded a knighthood also. Another SMOM 'knight' was his associate Laura Jordan Dietrich. [3]

Surrey died of a heart attack in January 1989. At that time the firm Surrey & Morse had already been acquired by Jones Day Reavis & Pogue which also took over the tobacco lobbying operations which by then was being run by Paul Dietrich.

Surrey's son Richard Sterling Surrey was listed as the General Counsel to the National Security Agency in 1990-92.

The TIMELINE below needs editing and research on some of the source material (a lot taken from notes written many years ago). Walter Surrey is important mainly because his life illustrates the intermeshing of the War-time OSS and post-war CIA with the major banking business, the creation of post-war coteries of old associates doing each other favours, and with the corporate services offered by Washington lawyers and lobbyists.


1915 July 24: Born Denver Colorado He move to New York, then graduated from the University of Virginia and Yale University law school.

1934: Student, City College of New York

1936: Bachelor of Science, University Virginia,

1939:Bachelor of Laws, Yale,

1939: Admitted to the New York Bar. Research assistant Randolph Paul, Lord, Day & Lord, New York, 1939-1940

1940-41: Surrey came to Washington in 1940 when he joined the claims division of the Justice Department.

1941: He joined the State Department. Attorney Board Economic Warfare, Washington, 1941-1943

Operation Safehaven was an interagency program to track down and block German assets in neutral and non-belligerant countries. The fear was that the German political and economic leadership, sensing defeat, would act to transfer secretly blocks of industrial and fiscal capital to neutral companies for a possible resurgent Fourth Reich.
CIA web site [4]
Note that because the Swiss continued to deal with the Germans, the US froze Swiss assets in the States during the war.

1941 Dec 14/E: The following quotes have obviously been culled from the book "Safehaven" By Martin Lorenz-Meyer.

The week after Pearl Harbor, Roosevelt put the State Department in charge of postwar planning - compensation for the fact that the Secretary of State had suddenly become one of the least important members of the cabinet. State had only 1968 employees in 1940, half overseas. It turned to Council of Foreign Relations based in New York - to "internationally minded bankers, corporation executives and Wall Street lawyers, along with professors and journalists."

1943 Jun /E: [War History] Walter Surrey was in the US secret service (OSS) in Scandinavia.

“........a Harvard professor of government, Bruce Hopper had boarded a whale cruiser at New York bound for Liverpool; he was later flown to Sweden by the RAF from a secret air base in Scotland. The 50-year-old New Deal liberal became the first OSS chief in neutral Stockholm. Hopper’s capable chief of operations was Wilho Tikander, a Finnish-American attorney from Chicago. His aides included Dr. Taylor Cole, a Duke University political science professor, Washington economist Richard Huber (NOTE), and New York attorney Walter Surrey.”

1943-45: Surrey was chief (Attache) of the Economic Warfare Section of the American legation in Stockholm, Sweden.
[Explanatory material from criticisms of a book on wartime Sweden:]

The authors deal with the activities of Swedish businessmen, representing "neutral" banks and corporations, who cooperated with their counterparts in Nazi-Germany; specifically, there is a focus on the Wallenberg family and their Stockholm Enskilda Bank. Cloaking, or hiding the true Nazi business ownership from Allies is noted, as is the way neutral banks, including Enskilda, helped to dispose of assets looted from occupied territory or Jews. [5]

Also (from another source)

After the summer of 1943 . . . the British [Secret Service] admitted that their backhanded treatment of the resistance [in Scandinavia] had been in error. The following year was a period of reconciliation with MILORG, (the Norwegian military underground) and in the British view, a poor time for OSS bunglers to arrive on the scene. The British successfully resisted American “interference” in Norwegian operations until the fall of 1943, when Colonel Joseph Haskell took command of the SO Branch in London and Dr. [Bruce] Hopper relinquished his own position to Wilho Tikander, his second-in-command.”
[NOTE: Under Donovan, the administrative work of the OSS was done by Donavan's law firm, Donovan, Leisure, Newton and Lumbard. Ned Putzell helped Donovan set up the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), and was an executive officer of the OSS during World War II. ][6]

1943 Dec: Randolph Paul was designated Special Assistant to President Truman.

He was placed in charge of the U.S. contingent to the Allied-Swiss negotiations. Paul had an important role in urging the rescue of Jews in Europe as the extent of the Holocaust became known. Seymour Rubin and Walter Surrey, and Senior Department of State officials responsible for economic security programs, assisted Paul. Walter Stucki headed up the Swiss delegation.

Iver Olsen arrived in Stockholm via London one week before Christmas 1943. His mission was to collect intelligence on the Swedish, Norwegian and Danish economies and report back to Harry White at the Treasury Department. Olsen could not say how much Nazi capital there was in Sweden, but he was convinced that Stockholm's Enskilda Bank was involved in a fairly large proportion of whatever there was. He was sure that we won’t get anywhere until we take steps ourselves, not the Swedes, to shake it out of them. He had been told by several responsible Swedes that there was much going on in the bank and that the average Swede could have no respect for the blacklist as long as this bank was not included.

Olsen also reported having had a showdown with Counselor Christopher Ravndal after the Legation had answered a Treasury inquiry behind his back. Olsen had reacted strongly. He had the impression that Ravndal had tried to freeze him out of Safehaven matters.

Olsen went on, and more or less accused Johnson (Herschel Johnson was the American Minister at the Stockholm Legation at this time.) and another member of the staff, Walter Surrey, of having been corrupted by the wealthy Swedes:

    "In the first place, the Minister takes the traditional attitude that influential and important Swedes are, per se, wonderful and forthright people. Perhaps this can be excused in part because of his functions as Minister of lunching and dining with these persons until the relationship becomes more personal than official.

For Surrey to follow the same footsteps on Safehaven and Blacklisting matters is bound, however, to have extremely unfortunate results, as already evidenced by his somewhat incredible cables on the Wallenbergs and Enskilda Bank. He started lunching and/or dining with these people and others of a similar stature and they simply are neutralizing him with kindness and phoney good-fellowship they are past and present masters of this game.

Consequently, as these personal relationships broadened, our hardest-hitting areas of Safehaven and Blacklisting problems have necessarily narrowed and more and more have become headed into peanut districts.

I feel, therefore, that there is a very real basis for the complaints prevalent in certain Swedish quarters that we are hounding the hell out of small fry of no overall importance, and are afraid of cracking the big fellows who can throw a wicked Smorgasbord. It isn’t, of course, that we are afraid it is that we have come to like them.(ie. the Wallenberg bankers) [[1]]

1944 Feb: U.S. and Allied Efforts To Recover and Restore Gold and Other Assets Stolen …
After the war the US attempted to recover money held by he Nazis in Switzerland. In February 1944 the Allies had issued the Allied Gold Declaration, and on April 23, the Allied negotiators informed the Swiss that Switzerland was liable for approximately $130 m (of Belgian gold, looted in France, and transferred by the Nazis to Switzerland). There was also gold transferred from Germany to Switzerland for asset purchases, payments for goods sold, and as bank holdings.

In all the Nazis has looted over $700 m in Europe, and estimates were $200m to 300 m had found its way to Switzerland as gold. But the Swiss returned only 1/5th.

1944 Dec: The End of war in sight: [This refers to whether they should seize or charge anyone who assisted with given German goods Swedish certificates of origin.]

In the last case some assistance was perhaps provided through the banking activities of the Wallenberg brothers and their Stockholm Enskilda Bank. Despite these activites, Sweden was perhaps also one of the most hopeful cases. On Klaus's request, Walter S Surrey, an energetic and knowledgeable officer at the embassy, was starting to investigate Safehaven cases. (See Morgenthau Plan for defeated Nazi German 1943-46)

Interagency squabble: [There was, however a fight in the Sweden consulate between the State and Treasury (In Sept 45 the State Department people won)]

At the end of 1944 (Project) Safehaven (involving UK and US) was underway - its aim was to investigate the flight of German capital. There was some dispute over who was in charge. This was tied in with Bretton Woods resolution ... "What should the Allies do with any German external assets discovered in the neutural countries." (The Russia had a focus on reparations in the form of machine tools)

Sweden had survived the war very well - the national economy grew 20% between 1939 and 1945, and they suffered no physical damage. Per Albin Hansson, was the Social Democratic prime minister. The US left Sweden in the hands of the Stockholm legation and the State Department's Division of Northern European Affairs.

Safehaven in Sweden started with Allied-Swedish talks in fall of 1944. Sweden had a particularly active team in Ambassador Herschel Johnson; his charge d'affaires, Christian Ravndal, and his Safehaven officer, Walter Surrey. Supposedly, Iver C Olsen, the Treasury department representative in ... (missing reference ??)

Note: an indexed reference to Safehaven: The allies pursuit of Nazi Assets says:
Bretton Woods Safehaven Sweden (looted diamonds)
Sweden had a particularly active team in Ambassador Herschel Johnson; his charge d' affairs, Christain Ravndal, and his Safehaven office (with) Walter Surrey (and) Iver C Olsen, the Treasury Department rep.

[It also quotes: FN35]"Identification of German Gold in Portugal," memo to Walter Surrey from O.D. Fletcher, State Department Division of Economic Security Controls, 12/6/46.

1945 Jan: (Probably from book Safehaven).

"While Currie (who ran Operation Safehaven in Switzerland) was still in Switzerland, Surrey left Paris for Washington (Jan 1945). In France, Surrey had seen Ovis Schmidt, the head of Foreign Funds Control of the Treasury Department, who was on his way to Bern with the Currie Delegation. Arriving in Washington, Surrey met with the Safehaven Liason Group at the end of February (1945).

Surrey had an excellent point of view and his ideas were for the most part consistent with Treasury's. The beauty of this situation was that Surrey was a highly regarded State Department officer, and that for once all three agencies seemed to be in complete harmony - a temporary illusion. They wanted Sweden to adhere to the Bretton Woods and other declarations, to count and freeze all enemy assets of any kind including looted assets, and to supply the Allies with lists,

He was back in Stockholm by mid-March 1945.

1945 June: Sweden passed two laws on control of assets and established the Flyktkapitalbyran ("Flight-capital bureau" - translated as Foreign Capital Control Office)

A general secrecy clause protected all the information the FCCO accessed during its work. Threat of sanctions -- King Gustav V -- Allied Control Council. The British held back on threats, and Russia was not involved (after initial demands) in any Safehaven action. Sweden used delaying tactics and demands for legal foundation of the Allied claims.

1945-47:Surrey must have returned to the USA in 1945, and he was now the Chief of the division, economic security controls, State Department, Washington, DC. Until 1946 he was also a member of the US delegation negotiating over German external assets in Switzerland, Sweden, Spain and Portugal.

1946 Mar 22: An intelligence report provided to Walter Surrey at the State Depart. (memo from Chairman, Reporting Board, SSU to Walter S Surrey, Esq. Division of Economics, Security Controls, Department of State March 22 1946) re Walter Stuki the Swiss negotiator in Washington. In Switzerland the Petitpierre US negotiator in Bern was Randolph Paul. [7]

General John Magruder was running the War Department/National Security Agency's Strategic Services Unit - dealng with the Swiss Federal Council in Bern

On April 10 Walter Surrey sent a memo from Washington to SSU headquarters in Bern -"information on Stuki of utmost value" suggesting that some additional (as opposed to the "original") intelligence material was obtained later."

1946 July 31: Allied-Swiss agreement.
Allied Secretary of State, Dean Acheson, responded to Congressman Baldwin on behalf of the White House in a letter on July 31 1946. Acheson's letter, which was presumably not seen by Acheson or any other senior office in the department, was drafted by Walter Surrey of the Division of Economic Security, and cleared by Seymore Rubin and junior offices on the staffs of Assistant Secretary Clayton and European Chief James Dunn.

1947-50: Assistant legal adviser to US delegation.

1947 Aug: He is listed as Deputy US negotiator of the Economic Agreement with Italy, on Aug 14 1947 (the "Lombardo Agreement")

1949: Surrey was now the Acting Coordinator, military assistance programs.

1946: At the end of the war, many of the old senior intelligence and diplomatic staff were now given important government administration jobs. They formed a mutual-support coterie in Washington:

  • Walter Surrey, attorney, Division Chief, Office of Economic Policy, Department of State, 1946-1947.
  • William J. Casey, head of Secret Intelligence Branch, European Theatre of Operations (ETO, Office of Strategic Services [Later Reagan's CIA chief]
  • William L. Clayton, businessman, Assistant Secretary of Commerce, 1942-1944, Assistant Secretary of State for Economic Affairs, December 1944-August 1946, Under Secretary of State for Economic Affairs, August 1946- October 1947.
  • Samuel Klaus, Special Assistant to the General Counsel, Treasury Department, 1940-1944, Project Safehaven, Foreign Economic Administration, 1944-1945, Special Counsel, Department of State, 1946-1963, Assistant Legal Adviser, Department of State, 1963.
  • John Magruder, Deputy Director, Office of Strategic Services, 1943-1945. [Not the Nixon Watergate burglar, but maybe the Jones Day Reavis attorney][8]
  • Thomas H. McKittrick, President, Bank for International Settlements, 1940-1946, Vice President, Chase National Bank, 1946-1949.
  • Randolph Paul, lawyer, General Counsel, Treasury Department, Acting Secretary in charge of Foreign Funds Control, Special Assistant to President Truman, head of delegation to the Allied- Swiss negotiations, Washington, March-May 1946. [Note: He is widely credited as the designer of the American tax system. He created the law-firm firm of Paul, Weiss, Wharton & Garrison.]
  • Seymour J. Rubin, Chief, Division of Financial and Monetary Affairs, Department of State, 1944-1945, Chief, Economic Security Controls, 1945; Acting Chief, Division of Economic and Security Controls, Office of Financial and Development Policy, 1945-1946; Assistant Legal Adviser for Economic Affairs, 1946, negotiator with Sweden, Spain, and Portugal. [[2]]

1947: Surrey was now the deputy negotiator Italian Economic Agreement under Treaty of Peace in 1947.

1947-50: Surrey did legal work at the State Department dealing with the Marshall Plan and NATO.Principal attorney

1947-48: Surrey was involved in the Marshall Plan legislation,

1948-50: Surrey was involved in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), Treaty and Implementing Legislation,

1950: Walter Sterling Surrey was admitted to the District of Columbia Bar.

1950: Surrey established the firm which later became the partnership of Surrey & Morse … initially it was with two other partners. (It is uncertain when Morse joined him) His son Richard Sterling Surrey was born this year (He also became the legal counsel to the National Security Agency.)

1950-52: Consultant ECA. (???)

1955: Admitted to the Supreme Court Bar.
(Circa) Referring to this period, Surrey was later described by at least one U.S. intelligence community researcher, John Cummings, as “a charter member of the old boy network of U.S. intelligence.”[9]

1956 July 21: Allen Dulles had a long, late-afternoon conversation in his office with an academic friend (??? rumoured to be Surrey) who served as a part-time adviser to the CIA. A month earlier, police in Poznan, Poland quashed a massive workers' demonstration, killing scores of demonstrators and sparking the world's attention. Whether citizens in Soviet-dominated European nations would ever revolt successfully against their oppressive governments had long been debated in the CIA …

1961 Dec 21: Walter Surrey's law firm has Ambassador Cowen as a partner. At much the same time his later associate, Guillermo Hernandez-Cartaya, was working for Citizens & Southern Bank in Atlanta.

1962 Dec 10: Surrey has made an approach to Philip Morris and this is the reply. He wants to provide legal-contact services in Manila, and says that he has many useful diplomatic contacts Bates: 2012582398

1962-63: Surrey is now also General counsel and chairman of the United States section or the Iran-United States Business Council.

1963 July 2:Surrey's law firm was a Washington partnership known as Surrey, Karasik & Greene at this time.The Senate Foreign Relations Committee accused this prominent law firm of misconduct while lobbying for sugar interests in the Dominican Republic. The attorneys involved were listed as Walter Sterling Surrey and Monroe Karasik, and they were accused of evading the Foreign Agents Registration Act also. [3]

(This is the same day a former British diplomat, H.A.R. Philby, was named in the House of Commons as a Soviet agent and 'third man" in the Burgess-Maclean spy case of 1951. Philby is thought to be behind the Iron Curtain while Burgess and Maclean, who also defected, are in Moscow. (1:5-6))[10]

1963-65: Member, acting chairman National Conference International Economic and Social Development. He produces a book in 1963 "A Lawyer's guide to international business transactions" which is edited by Walter Sterling Surrey and Crawford Shaw. Philadelphia :

1964 Jan 16: Surrey and his partner Myron Cohen are acting as a go-between for Justus Heymans from Philip Morris in doing business with the Soviet Union, and for obtaining visas. He is dealing with US Department of Agriculture. [[4]]

1964 Apr 8: Miss Marguerite P Schimpff, from Walter Surrey's office at the Woodward Building, H & 15th Streets, Washington DC 2005 is able to expedite visas to various countries for Justus Heymans of Philip Morris International. [[5]]

1964 Jul 10: Justus Heymans (PM International) writes to George Weissman about problems with the Philippines.

Walter Surrey should push Detherage Proposition import USA tobaccos 3 - 5 million kg 1965 but believe President will NOT act before elections, but let us prepare OUR OLD PLAN.

[Their emphasis and cryptic code] [[6]]

1970 Feb: David Morse resigned from the International Labor Organisation and returned to the USA to practice law.

1971: In the period 1971-73 Surrey, who had retained his CIA and Foreign Service links, was involved in the CIA's banking and money-laundering activities including the formation of the World Finance Corporation on 1971 [11] and the Nugan Hand Bank in 1973.

In 1971, Surrey was one of the original founders of the infamous World Finance Corporation (WFC), which under the dubious leadership of its founder, Cuban Guillermo Hernández-Cartaya (b. 1932?), ran illegal money laundering operations for Colombian cocaine and international arms dealers (as did the Nugan Hand Bank). The CIA was actively involved; clearly finding it useful to have these criminal connections for its undercover operations. There were even connections to the banking scandals of Italy’s Propaganda Due (“P2”) and the Vatican Bank, as depicted in the movie Godfather Part III. Surrey resigned shortly before the collapse of the WFC, denying any knowledge of wrongdoing or criminality.[12]

Another reference says:

In 1971 Batista/Cuban expatriate banker Guillermo Hernandez-Cartaya and Walter Sterling Surrey establish World Finance Corporation for the CIA (in Florida). At least 12 World Finance employees had past associations with the CIA.This was an 'elaborate corporate labyrinth. Money was channeled through Bahamas Cisalpine Bank and the Vatican Bank (managed by Paul Marcinkus and Roberto Calvi) - who also laundered heroin money via Nugan Hand Bank.

1971 Dec 18: Before Morse joins the law-firm, Surrey is dealing with George Weissman, a top executive at Philip Morris. He gave Weissman letters for contacts in the Philippines. The Surrey lawfirm had the services of Ambassador Myron Cohen who could arrange things in diplomatic circles in Europe. [[7]]
* See Wiseman's strategy document ... Industry Strategy No. 1 [[8]]

1972 /E: 1982 /E "The Bankers, The Businessmen, and the Lawyers" [a book on the modern rape of Africa by the IMF and Western business interests]
[Report on a 1980 Press Conference with Zaire's Citoyen Namwisi]

After almost every question, Namwisi bends his ear down to the mouth of an elderly looking American seated nearby, who whispers to Namwisi. Then Namwisi replies.

The elderly looking American who seems to have all the answers is David A Morse, seventy-three, a Washington lawyer, a former director general of the International Labor Organization (a UN agency). Morse is now senior counsel to the UN Development Program and other organizations dispensing aid to the third world. Simultaneously he also hire himself out to countries, such as Ziare, that receive aid. He sells these countries advice on how to handle their international relations.

Versatility is Morse's stock in trade. At one of the luncheon tables, for example, are a vice-president for government relations from International Harvester Company and a representative of Gaucher Pringle Limited, a Montreal-base engineering concern. In conversation, they disclose that International Harvester has taken on a Gaucher Pringle affiliate, Sofati, as a partner in bidding for a large transportation project in Zaire.

It seems a wise choice of partners because the chairman of Sofati is David A Morse, who is, after all, advising the Zairian government on how to spend its money. According to Gaucher Pringle, Sofati rakes in about $50 million a year running training programs and the like in Third World countries.

[In 1981 Morse resigned as chairman of Sofati.]

Morse's firm, Surrey & Morse, also represents Senegal, Egypt, Sudan, Romania, Venezuela, Botswana, China, and other countries. Before the people of Iran kicked the Shah and the United States out of that country, Morse was vice-chairman of a company building a big dam and water project there.

Morse's law partner, Walter Surrey, was once profiled on page one of the Wall Street Journal as the very prototype of the Washington "rainmaker". That means, the Journal explained, that he is the kind of influential lawyer or lobbyist whose presence behind the scenes tends to make things happen "as if by magic", regardless of anything he does officially.

Writing in Inquiry magazine, John Cummings, a Newsday reporter, described Surrey as a

    "charter member of the old boy network of US intelligence ... of the OSS [Office of Strategic Services] station in Stockholm during World War II ... one of the capital's 'super lawyers' ... and an expert on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act."

The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act forbids certain kinds of payments by US companies overseas and permits others -- businessmen being shaken down for bribes oversears would be worried about the act. Surrey acknowledges he was in the OSS in World War II, but says he severed all ties with the intelligence community when he went to the State Department after the war as chief of the division of economic security controls.

[He actually headed the CIA/MI6 team on 'Operation Safehaven' trying to recover Nazi gold and other loot from Swedish (with a focus on the Wallenberg family and their Stockholm Enskilda Bank) and Swiss banks.]

(He later went into private law practice.) Still, Surrey & Morse, the firm that whispers the answers in Zaire's ear as if it were pulling the strings of a puppet, seem to thrive on connections to countries caught up in the cold war.

Walter Surrey also lists on documents as stockholder, director, and lawyer for a Miami-based concern called the World Finance Corporation, beginning with its founding in 1970 by a group including CIA-connected anti-Castro Cuban exiles. Surrey resigned his World Finance jobs in 1979, the year that several law enforcement agencies began a long investigation of drug-dealing and spying involving the company.

By then it had offices in New York, Lima, Bogotá, Caracas, Panama, San José (Costa Rica), Mexico City, London and the Ajman Arab Emirate in the Persian Gulf. Hundreds of millions, maybe billions, of dollars passed through its hands. Its ostensible businesses were banking, insurance, and real estate. Surrey says he came aboard mainly to help start a foreign-based mutual fund for an old client, a Cuban exile who helped found World Finance [Hernandez-Cartaya]. He says he dropped out when the mutual fund deal fell through, and that he was unaware of any criminal or intelligence activities at the company.

[Note: The World Finance Corp was shut down after investigations in 1980, and the CEO was convicted of income tax violations. Jerome Sanford, assistant US attorney in Miami says the main evidence found in the investigation was never exposed by the Justices Department, and that the main investigation was halted in 1978 by Washington after the CIA objected.]

The staff of the House Select Committee on Narcotics and Drug Abuse also investigated, and, in a secret report to Congress, said,

    "There is no question that the parameters of the WFC [World Finance Corp] can encompass a large body of criminal activity, including aspects of political corruption, gun running, as well as narcotics trafficking on an international level .... It is against this background that our investigations encountered a number of veiled or direct references to CIA and KGB [the Soviet intelligence agency] complicity or involvement in narcotics trafficking in South Florida."

The committee took no public action. [[9]]

1973: The World Finance Corp has now founded a totally-controlled Panama subsidiary "Unibank" which immediately (and suspiciously) received its "Class One" liberal license.

1973 Jun: Surrey is now in partnership with both Karinsik and Morse. They are setting up Philip Morris contacts in the Soviet Union.

... to establish a Philip Morris relationship with the appropriate authorities in the USSR in order that the Philip Morris capabilities could become known to the Soviet authorities and a basis established for business development.

Mr. David Morse advised Mr.Cullman that he had been invited to visit the Soviet Union by a member of the Council of Ministries of the Soviet Union, with whom Mr. Morse had worked over a period of 20 years when he was Director General of the I.L.O.
[They were planning to run a symposium in the USSR (mainly on packaging technology)]
With reference to the inclusion of tobacco in the symposium,he reiterated that in the light of the health campaign being undertaken by the Soviet Union, it would be inappropriate to give publicity to a tobacco symposium which would at the same time appear to the public to be contrary to the public policy of the Government against smoking .

In this connection, he (Morse) recommended that contact be made with the appropriate officials and organizations in Bulgaria on tobacco in order that the facilities of the Bulgarian tobacco authorities could be utilized for importation of tobacco into the Soviet Union and for an exchange of technology in Bulgaria which could be made available through Bulgaria to the Soviet Union.


1973: Walter Sterling Surrey is on a Moscow trip for Philip Morris. He is listed as partner in Surrey, Karasik & Morse with David Morse 1000270749

1973: [A later record]

Just over 35 years ago, in 1973, as the head of the newly formed National Council for US-China Trade, Chris H Phillips led the first American trade delegation to the People's Republic of China. Among the delegation that Chris led were giants of American business: Don Burnham, CEO of Westinghouse; Gabriel Hauge, Chairman of Manufacturer's Hanover Trust; Don Hewitt, Chairman of Deere & Co., and Walter Sterling Surrey, of Surrey & Morse. The group posed on the Great Wall, the first officially sanctioned American trade group to be welcome in China.

Also another report:

In 1973, the National Council for US-China Trade led the first US business delegation to China since 1949, jump-starting US-China trade relations.

The idea for a private US organization to foster US trade relations with China arose from a report to Congress by House Majority Leader Hale Boggs and Minority Leader Gerald Ford. In presenting the report of their June-July 1972 China trip, Impressions of the New China, Boggs told the House that "until we have normal state relations with China, a quasi-public body" could lay a basis for US trade with the PRC.

In spring 1973, at President Richard Nixon's request, US Commerce Secretary Frederick Dent and Robert Hormats, then a young international economist on the National Security Council staff and now vice chair of Goldman Sachs (International), established a private sector organization to advance business with China. They asked Donald Burnham, chair and CEO of Westinghouse Electric Corp., to assemble a roster of distinguished US corporate leaders who would later become members of the Council's board of directors. Washington attorney Walter Sterling Surrey incorporated the group as the National Council for United States-China Trade, Inc., a name that was subsequently changed to the United States-China Business Council, Inc in 1988.

[Also 1973] Oral History of Charles P. Kindleberger
[Economist with the Office of Strategic Services, 1942-44, '45; chief, Division German and Austrian Economic Affairs, Department of State, Washington, 1945-48; and Intelligence Officer, 12th U.S. Army group, 1944-45 to End of war.]
He refers to: [Seymour J.] Rubin, [Monroe] Karasik, and [Walter S.] Surrey … these lawyers who had been interested in the Safe Haven Program of grading German assets. I had nothing to do with that up to that stage. It so happened that more property people like Karasik came in to work with me … Surrey was in charge of enemy property.

1974: The WFC's Hernandez-Cartaya and his father, Marcelo Hernandez, are now on the board of (later Senator) Lloyd M Bentsten's family Jefferson Savings and Loan (chartered in 1956)

1974 May: Surrey had a minor heart attack. Bates: 1000273200

1975: The World Finance Corp. was made the "exclusive official agent by the Colombian Government for a loan of $100 million, the largest in the nation's history." The WFC Corp was now a maze of banks reached to the United Arab Emirates, Switzerland, London, the Caribbean, Miami, Colombia and Panama.

They found that it was controlled through many shell companies. Unibank now had affiliates worldwide and $50 million in deposits and it had diversified into arms smuggling and circumventing the embargo of Cuba.

1976: Surrey claims to have dropped off the WFC Group board.

1976 Feb 26: The television documentary series "60 Minutes" reveals that $50 million had been lost from WFC. It was controlled through many shell companies. Unibank now had affiliates worldwide and $50 million in deposits and it had diversified into arms smuggling and circumventing the embargo of Cuba.

1976: American investigations revealed the WFC was principle launderer of money for Colombian cocaine smugglers; the investigation proceeded for approximately two years. They found links to Aerocodor, a drug-smuggling South American airline and contacts with Cuban-Mafia drug syndicate of Santo Trafficante Jr. WCF had also received a $2 m loan from KGB-connected Narodny Bank in Moscow.

1976: The Comptroller of the Currency forced Cartaya out of the Pan American Bank of Hiateah in Florida. $2 million was lost.

1976: Cartaya and a group of anti-Castro Cubans establish Coordination of United Revolutionary Organizations (CORU) -- "an umbrella organization for terrorism against Cuban installations and against the persons and property of countries deemed overly sympathetic to Fidel Castro's regime." -- it was partly financed by Cartaya and part by the CIA. George HW Bush was the director of the CIA at that time.

1976-77: CORU took credit for fifty bombings in Miami, New York, Venezuela, Panama, Mexico and Argentina in the first ten months after it was established. The financing of CORU operations allegedly came from WFC. The federal authorities suspected Cartaya of working with the Contra backer and former CIA officer Gustavo Villoldo.

1976: US Customs agents intercepted a private plane from Panama and found thousands of dollars concealed in cash strapped to a woman associated with WFC's Vice President. Also aboard the plane was the Vice President, Cartaya, and Cartaya's wife.

1976 Sep 21: Orlando Letelier, ex Chilean Foreign Minister was assassinated by CORU.

1976 Oct: The Cubana Flight 455 exploded in midair, killing all 73 people aboard. This included all 24 young athletes on Cuba's gold-medal fencing team. (CORU also)

1977 May: The Ajman Arab Bank, a WCF subsidiary in the UAE collapsed.

1977: The Banking Commissioner of Panama seized Unibank; the National Bank of Panama had already lost $10 m.

1977: In 1977 the World Finance Corporation collapsed. Guillermo Hernández Cartaya was later charged with money laundering, drugs & arms trafficking and embezzlement.

The federal prosecutor told Pete Brewton that he had been approached by a CIA officer who explained that "Cartaya had done a bunch of things that the government was indebted to him for, and he asked me to drop the charges against him." As a result Cartaya was only convicted of tax evasion. After serving one year in prison, Cartya was released on 6th June, 1987.

By 1977, Hernandez-Cartaya and World Finance were the focus of intense and extensive state and federal investigations into drug smuggling, money laundering, gun running, political corruption and terrorist activities. But the case fizzled out in 1978 and only resulted in one income-tax indictment of Hernandez-Cartaya, in 1981. The CIA was partly, if not totally, responsible for pulling the plug on the investigation.

At least 12 World Finance employees had past associations with the CIA. When Assistant U.S. Attorney R. Jerome Sanford, who resigned in frustration and disgust over the failed investigation, tried to obtain from the FBI its CIA files on World Finance, he was denied access on the grounds of national security. But the CIA did acknowledge that it had 24 documents relating to World Finance that were generated in 1976 and 1977.

One of the six founding directors and stockholders of World Finance, along with Hernandez-Cartaya, was Washington lawyer Walter Sterling Surrey, described by journalist John Cummings as "a charter member of the old boy network of U.S. intelligence." Surrey had served in the OSS (the CIA's predecessor) in World War II, and after the war went to work for the State Department as head of the Division of Economic Security Controls. He resigned his position with World Finance in 1976 and has denied any knowledge of intelligence or illegal activities at the company.

1978: Assistant US Attorney R. Jerome Sanford, resigned in frustration over the failed investigation into WFC which had been blocked by the CIA in Washington. Allegations were made that 8 of the 12 bank directors were either current or former CIA employees, and that then-CIA director William J. Casey apparently stymied the investigation for reasons of "national security".

1979: Surrey has published “China’s New Joint Venture Law” from A New Look at Legal Aspects of Doing Business with China, Developments a Year After Recognition. Edited by Howard M. Holtzmann and Walter Sterling Surrey. New York: Practising Law Institute, 1979

1980: The WFC Corporation closed its doors for the last time; they had problems with the money which had been moved to the National Bank of South Florida (controlled by WFC) The following year Hernandez-Cartaya was indicted on a minor income-tax evasion charge, and after appealing he was convicted in 1982. Again after appeals he served a year in prison between June 1986 and June 1987.

1981-93Elizabeth Rindskopf Parker of the firm Surrey & Morse became the General Counsel of the National Security Agency (NSA) under the Reagan Administration, and later held the same position at the CIA under the George Herbert Walker Bush Administration.

1983 Oct 10: Richard Nixon sends Walter Surrey a copy of his latest book on Foreign Affairs. (from the later Nixon records)

RICHARD NIXON. TLS: "RN", 1p, 7?x10?. New York, N.Y., 1983 October 10. To Walter Sterling Surrey, Esq. In full:
"This is one of 1,000 copies of the private, limited edition of Real Peace: A Strategy for the West. Copies are being sent to a select group of government officials and opinion leaders in the United States and abroad.
Little, Brown and Company will publish and distribute the book in the United States and Canada in January 1984. I trust it may contribute to a better understanding of where we have been, where we are, and where we should go in our relations with the Soviet Union, China, Japan, Europe, and the Third World."

[Explanatory Note:] Book not present. Former President RICHARD M. NIXON had published Real Peace, one of several political books he authored, in 1983. WALTER STERLING SURREY had served in the Office of Strategic Services, the military intelligence organization that became the CIA, and in the State Department. He was Chairman of the National Council for U.S.-China Trade, President of the American Society of International Law and founding Director of the World Finance Corporation. Fine condition.

1983: Surrey was chairman of both the United States-China Business Council and the National Planning Association. He was secretary and counsel to the Institute of International Finance Inc., which he helped start in 1983.

1984 Jan: Surrey has been fired by Philip Morris over a China stuff-up in January 1984 [11]

1984: The NSA general counsels were supposed to know about and completely analyze every NSA operation to determine the legality of it. Elizabeth Rindskopf Parker took over at the NSA less than a month after the La Penca bombing in May 1984, and the Iran-Contra Affair was in full gear.

Much of Lt. Col. Oliver North’s operations (including the infamous diversion of funds to the “Contras” in Nicaragua) ought to have come across her desk, but she never emerged as a prominent figure in this scandal or any other scandals for that matter.

1984 Nov: Ronald Reagan's landslide mid-term win. James Bolton as Secretary for State elevates his assistant, Laura Jordan Dietrich to the position of Deputy Assistant Secretary for Human Rights and Humanitarian Affairs - the US representative on the Human Rights Commission of the United Nations.

1985: Surrey & Morse now had a 100 lawyers worldwide. [Probably labor/union legal associates]

1983 May 20: Houminer at Philip Morris writes to Hamish Maxwell about anti-trust and other negotiations in Europe.

Mr W Surrey and Mr A Krash of Arnold & Porter spoke again to Mr. Stark of the Justice Department on May 18 concerning the US Government readiness to make appproaches on our behalf to the German Government Mr Stark advised that he is against any action in this matter. We must - by now - conclude it will be impossible to get a US Government intervention.

1983-84: Surrey was a founder, then secretary and counsel to the Institute of International Finance Inc. based in Washington, along with Washington economist [[Richard Huber[[. (Based at 1333 H St, with Fax 202-775-1430)

1986 /E: As chair of the National Council for U.S.-China Trade, Surrey promoted an expansion of the rule of law governing business in China. He was chairman of both the United States-China Business Council and the National Planning Association.

1986: Jones Day Reavis Pogue history says that Dick Pogue "continued Jones Days expansion."

But the principal accomplishment during his tenure was the opening of the first Jones Day offices outside the United States.

After some considerable study, the Firm concluded that the optimal way to do this was through New York, which was the principal connection for the U.S. legal profession with business outside the U.S. That was accomplished with the merger in 1986 with Surrey & Morse, a well-respected international law firm with offices in New York, London, Paris, and Washington.

It was led by two well-respected international lawyers, Walter Surrey and David Morse. In fact, David Morse had the unique honor of accepting the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the International Labor Organization when he was its head.

Messrs. Surrey and Morse had held a variety of international posts in the post-World War II period and then had joined to establish what by 1985 had become a 100-lawyer firm, with its two founders about to retire as managers of the firm. Over the next several years, the Firm expanded into Hong Kong, Brussels, Tokyo, Taipei, and Frankfurt.[[12]]

Surrey transferred over to Jones Day along with Paul Dietrich and most of the tobacco industry lobby work. Sanders Squire & Demsey was a subsidiary also.

1987 Jan 12: US vs John Doe (US Supreme Court).Paul R. Grand argued the cause for respondents. With him on the brief were Theodore V. Wells, Jr., Walter Sterling Surrey, Carol M. Welu, and Howard Adler, Jr. * This was something to do with the State Department and CIA.

Hernandez-Cartaya is a Cuban exile who fought in the abortive CIA-backed Bay of Pigs invasion, was captured and then was ransomed by the U.S. government. He went to work for Citizens & Southern Bank in Atlanta and then in 1970 formed World Finance Corporation in Miami. Also on board of S&L of the family of the Lloyd M Bentsen, US Senator.

WFC, a Florida based financial conglomerate and drug-trafficking front closely associated with the Restoy-Escandar-Trafficante organization exposed in Operation Eagle. An unpublished congressional staff study of the company found that it encompassed "a large body of criminal activity, including aspects of political corruption, gun running, as well as narcotics trafficking on an international level." The WFC empire was led by CIA-trained Bay of Pigs veteran Guillermo Hernandez Cartaya, whom federal authorities suspected of working with the Contra backer and former CIA officer Gustavo Villoldo. The head of the Dade County investigation of WFC later said he found that one company subsidiary was "nothing but a CIA front."


1989 Jan 30: Surrey died at Sibley Memorial Hospital after a heart attack. He lived in Washington. His first two marriages to Rita Surrey and Virginia Surrey had ended in divorce. Survivors include his third wife, Dana Surrey of Washington; two children by his first marriage, Richard [Sterling] Surrey of Washington and Elizabeth Surrey Adams of Arvada, Colo.; five stepdaughters, Laura Akerman of Norfolk, Kathleen Hux of Falling Waters, W.Va., Letitia Zimmerman of Arlington, Stacy Johnson of Orange Park, Fla., and Mary O'Conor of Lusby, Md.; a stepson, Edward O'Conor of Arvada, and eight grandchildren.

1992: Because of the (Ron) Brown controversy, when Washington lobbyist Haley Barbour became GOP chairman in late 1992, he pledged to party leaders and on CNN that he would sever his ties to Barbour, Griffith & Rogers. But in fact he never sold his interest in the firm, deriving income from its tobacco, pharmaceutical and other clients.

The subterfuge became known to reporters only in the final days of his four-year term, when Barbour's firm landed a contract representing the Swiss government and had to register ownership and other information with the Justice Department under the Foreign Agents Registration Act. In the letter of agreement stipulating that the firm would receive $20,000 a month, Barbour's partner Lanny Griffith wrote to the Swiss ambassador, "We are eager to assist the Swiss government managing the controversy arising out of allegations of Swiss banking practices before, during and after World War II and relating to the Holocaust." [[13]]
Note: this was tagged on to the above entry. It is not clear who this refers to - Barbour or Surrey.]

During his tenure restrictions were lifted on the use of the CIA to directly, covertly influence the internal and foreign affairs of countries relevant to American policy.

This period of the Cold War saw an increase of the Agency's anti-Soviet activities around the world. Notably he oversaw covert assistance to the mujahadeen resistance in Afghanistan, with a budget of over $1 billion by working closely with Akhtar Abdur Rahman (the Director General of ISI of Pakistan), the Solidarity movement in Poland, and a number of coups and attempted coups in South- and Central America.

According to a 600-page report by the CIA inspector general, Frederick Hitz, the CIA under Casey was complicit in the Contras' massive narco-trafficking operation which resulted in the crack epidemic. Casey was also the principal architect of the arms-for-hostages deal that became known as the Iran-Contra affair.

  • See CIA explanation [14]

1994: Walter's son Richard Sterling Surrey is working at the lawfirm Sanders, Squire & Demsey, which was also the firm/subsidiary used by Paul Dietrich (partner with his father and David Morse in tobacco scams)

1999 April 7: James D. Wolfensohn, President, The World Bank Group giving the Walter Sterling Surrey Memorial Lecture at the National Policy Association in Washington, D.C.

I thank you very much indeed for the opportunity to be here and I would like to say how proud I am to be delivering the Walter Sterling Surrey Lecture. Mrs. Surrey, you may know that I gave the David Morse Lecture at the Council on Foreign Relations a few months ago and had the pleasure of seeing Mrs. Morse there. Surrey and Morse were quite a duo and I am delighted to be here and speaking in the name of your late husband.

  2. [14]
  3. [15]
  4. [16]
  5. The art of cloaking ownership: the secret collaboration and protection of the German war industry by the neutrals: the case of Sweden. by Aalders, Gerard and Cees Wiebes. (Amsterdam University Press and the Netherlands State Institute for War Documentation, 1996. v, 210 pp).
  6. OSS: The Secret History of America's First Central Intelligence Agency by Smith, R. Harris (1972)
  7. RG 226/Entry 108A, Box 1, Folder 9. Walter S. Surrey, Esq.; Division of Economic Security Controls, Department of State from Chairman, Reporting Board SSU; 22 March 1946
  8. [17]
  9. (see Pete Brewton, The Mafia, CIA and Bush (1992)).
  10. [18]
  11. International Labour Organisation Director-General's Office Biosketch of David A. Morse, former Director General Web site, accessed April 3, 2008
  12. [19]
  13. [20]
  14. [21]