The American Federation of Teachers and the CIA

Almost all the books we read have been censored in some way by the US government via the publishing industry.

Cover of the new edition of the classic 1978 study of teachers and international relations.

A chronicle of the connections between the American labor movement and the CIA with an emphasis on the American Federation of Teachers. Originally published in 1977 by George Schmidt and reprinted in 1990 with a new introduction this is the first digital version and includes valuable links due to the work of Leo Zimmerman. Vera Pavone transcribed the entire document.

Uploaded byGrassroots Education Movement (NYC) Date uploadedon Sep 18, 2012

The Substance pamphlet "The American Federation of Teachers and the CIA" is now available in PDF format. The 1978 pamphlet, which traced the early involvement of the AFT beginning in the 1970s with the American Institute for Free Labor Development (AIFLD) and other CIA labor groups also includes the speech from the AFT convention delivered by Irving Brown.

The URL is:

Cover of the new edition of the classic 1978 study of teachers and international relations.A group of Chicago teachers and activists will be discussing whether it is possible to update the information published back then (when research was much more difficult because of the lack of the Internet and Google and other searches) to include more information now. Given the situation in Honduras, Mexico, and elsewhere in Latin America and the anniversary this week of the murder of the elected president of Chile, Salvador Allende, in a CIA sponsored coup d'etat, there may be a need for an updating of the information and for some researchers in both continents to utilize more of the available documents in a coordinated "Truth Squad." (As to "Reconciliation," that is not on the Substance agenda).


You cannot go to a book store and find The American Federation of Teachers and the CIA written by George Schmidt in 1978. These type of books that expose the lies of our government have to be self-published.

George Schmidt who founded Substance News in 1975 to fight for substitute rights and exposed the corruption and lies of not only the Chicago Board of Education and the Chicago Mayor but also the Chicago Teachers Union and its collaboration at times with the power structure.

His book The AFT and the CIA exposes this lie that the union is just there to protect workers' rights. The American Federation of Teachers has in fact been used to help install right-wing dictatorships around the world via its collaboration with the Central Intelligence Agency which is focused on protecting US corporate power at the expense of the people.

This was the time of the Cold War and the battle with the Soviet Union to control the world. It is no different today.

"These same leaders generally neglect to mention that their own "free" labor movement has been similarly by the American Secret Police, the CIA."

The collaboration with Irving Brown from the CIA with the American Federation of Teachers reminded me of CORE's fight with the AFT when they invited Bill Gates to the AFT Convention in Seattle. Both entities represent corporate power that opposes unions and worker organizing.

George's book is a fascinating narrative of the different groups that work with the unions and the intelligence services to subvert governments across the world. He connects the U.S. Agency for International Development or USAID as another CIA front. I worked with USAID when I reported in Russia in the 1990s to promote the free market. Little did I know!

The American labor groups with CIA money would work with a particular worker organization tied to dictator's like Pinochet in Chile or Bautista in Cuba.

"Chile is a good example. In 1973, Chile lost its democratically-elected president and regained its "free trade union movement" with the help of AIFLD, the Pentagon, the Chilean oligarchy, the right wing of the Catholic Church and a group of freedom loving generals who proceeded to execute at least 30,000 people, most of them trade unionists."

George writes further when the horrors of Chile were exposed that the AFT passed a resolution condemning the coup, but an amendment asking the AFT to investigate its relationship to the 1973 coup was defeated. George's research is quite extensive. He noted that Sec. of State Henry Kissinger had planned a NATO intervention of Southern Africa to prevent a radical takeover. The CTU and other labor unions tied to the Democratic Party today have not criticized NATO intervention in Ukraine that has provoke the Russian attack.

He also noted that the war in Vietnam began before US soldiers were sent to die when the CIA worked with French trade unions to make sure no strikes stopped the arms shipments in the early 1950s.

George's acerbic wit matched by his brilliant pen puts a literary spin on some of our more darker moments in trade unionism: "The massacre of half a million Indonesians has opened the door to successful 'free trade union' activity in another country."

But it was not only the AFT but also the NEA or National Education Association that worked extensively with the CIA to kill labor activists around the world on behalf of big business.

His last chapter entitled The New York Road to Power noted that after the NY's United Federation of Teachers established themselves as a liberal union that supported civil rights and desegregation in the 1950s then later purged all their activists as a cold hard business unionism took hold.

This book has more than enough to prove that history repeats!

You can access The American Federation of Teachers and the CIA by George Schmidt at -


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