The AFL-CIO, George Meany, and the Vietnam War
George Meany’s anti-Communism, though clearly evident before World War II, grew in the postwar years as he formed associations with Jay Lovestone and David Dubinsky of the International Ladies Garment Workers Union and Matthew Woll, a longtime American Federation of Labo (AFL) functionary. The well-publicized activities, proclamations, and actions of the leadership of the AFL-Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO) itself as exemplified by Meany, his executive board, Jay Lovestone, his foreign policy adviser and Peter Brennan. The AFL-CIO is a union of unions; a voluntary association of 121 labor unionsin the United States. The concept of Vietnamization appealed to the American public who felt, as Brennan did, that the United States “must have an honorable peace, not walk out like Chamberlain did.” American foreign policy in Vietnam, the views of the top leadership of the AFL-CIO increasingly diverged from those of the local leadership and the rank-and-file throughout the 1960’s and early 1970’s.