Hillary Clinton and liberal activist Saul Alinsky were once reportedly very close friends; some news accounts have even portrayed the Rules for Radials author the former secretary of state’s mentor. A series of missives which have been dubbed “The Hillary Letters” have recently been revealed to the public. The communications allegedly shed some light on Hillary Clinton’s “ideological development” and her relationship with the controversial liberal activist from Chicago.
Saul Alinsky and Hillary Clinton reportedly met multiple times while the former first lady was writing her Wellesley College thesis about his community organizing theories. Hillary Clinton’s apparent support for Alinsky’s philosophy allegedly continued for at least several years after she entered the Yale school of law in 1969, according to details in the Hillary letters as published by the Washington Free Beacon.
The Hillary letters published by the Washington Free Beacon as part of the Industrial Areas Foundation archives. The foundation was founded as Saul Alinsky as a training center for community organizers. The Area Foundation archives are houses at the University of Texas at Austin. Saul Alinsky died in 1972.
In 1971, a then 23-year-old Hillary Clinton interned at the law firm of Treuhaft, Walker, and Burnstein in Berkeley, California. The law firm was then known for its “radical politis,” Fox News reports. The Black Panthers and other militant groups of the 1970s were clients of the California law firm.
A Hillary letter sent to Alinsky during her internship reads in part, “Dear Saul, When is that new book [Rules for Radicals’ coming out or has it come and I somehow missed the fulfillment of Revelaton? I have just had my one-thousandth conversation about Reveille [for Radicals] and need some new material to throw at people.” Saul Alinksy published Reveille, a book about his community organizing theories, in 1946. Clinton sent the letter via airmail.
In her memoir, Living History, Hillary Clinton penned just a single paragraph about Saul Alinsky. In the book she stated that she had rejected a job offer from him in 1969 because she wanted to go to law school and follow a more “conventional” path.
The Hillary letter goes on to say, “The more I’ve seen of places like Yale Law School and the people who haunt them, the more convinced I am that we have the serious business and joy of much work ahead—if the commitment to a free and open society is ever going to mean more than eloquence and frustration.”
The Hillary Clinton letter to Alinsky referenced contact the pair had engaged in during her years at Yale. Clinton also referenced missing their “regular conversations” and asked Alinsky if he would have time to meet with her the next time he was in California.
Saul Alinksy reportedly advocated for both civil disobedience and “guerrilla tactics” to “correct” what he felt was an institutionalized power gap in poor communities. Some feel Alinsky had adopted an ends-justify-the means mindset relating to the redistribution of wealth and power.
What do you think about Hillary Clinton’s letters to Saul Alinsky and her relationship with the Rules for Radicals author?
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