Clark McAdams Clifford

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Clifford, Clark McAdams,

1906–98, U.S. government official, b. Fort Scott, Kans. Admitted to the bar in 1928, he engaged in private practice before serving (1944–46) in the U.S. navy. As special adviser (1946–50) to President Harry S. TrumanTruman, Harry S.,
1884–1972, 33d President of the United States, b. Lamar, Mo. Early Life and Political Career

He grew up on a farm near Independence, Mo., worked at various jobs, and tended the family farm.
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, Clifford was influential in foreign policy, defense, and labor matters; he helped to formulate the Truman Doctrine (1947) and the legislation that created (1949) the Department of Defense. He also planned Truman's successful 1948 campaign strategy. After another period of private law practice, Clifford served (1961–63) as a foreign policy adviser to President John F. KennedyKennedy, John Fitzgerald,
1917–63, 35th President of the United States (1961–63), b. Brookline, Mass.; son of Joseph P. Kennedy. Early Life

While an undergraduate at Harvard (1936–40) he served briefly in London as secretary to his father, who was
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 and then became (1963) chairman of the Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board. In this capacity he supervised all U.S. espionage operations and played a crucial role in determining U.S. policy in Vietnam. As Secretary of Defense (1968–69) in Lyndon B. JohnsonJohnson, Lyndon Baines,
1908–73, 36th President of the United States (1963–69), b. near Stonewall, Tex. Early Life

Born into a farm family, he graduated (1930) from Southwest Texas State Teachers College (now Southwest Texas State Univ.), in San Marcos.
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's cabinet, Clifford came to oppose further American participation in the Vietnam WarVietnam War,
conflict in Southeast Asia, primarily fought in South Vietnam between government forces aided by the United States and guerrilla forces aided by North Vietnam. The war began soon after the Geneva Conference provisionally divided (1954) Vietnam at 17° N lat.
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, concluding that it was unwinnable. He went on to become a wealthy corporate lawyer. Clifford was chairman (1982–91) of First American Bankshares, which was secretly and illegally owned by the foreign Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI). In 1992 he was indicted on charges stemming from BCCI's secret ownership of First American, but the charges were dismissed (1993) for health reasons.


See his autobiography (1991); see also D. Frantz and D. McKean, Friends in High Places (1995).

References in periodicals archive ?
Truman's political advisor, Clark Clifford, believed that the Jewish vote and contributions were essential to winning the upcoming presidential election, and that supporting the partition plan would garner that support.
He kept the company of such great American statesmen and presidential advisers as Averell Harriman, Clark Clifford and Cyrus Vance.
The challenge facing biographer Acacia was to uncover the real Clark Clifford, and he has done so in outstanding fashion.
White House counsel Clark Clifford cautioned Truman that his re-election was unlikely without the funding that Jewish-Americans - with Israel's recognition - were eager to provide.
By early 1968 McNamara had become an unacceptable political liability to the White House, and his replacement by Clark Clifford heralded a fundamental change in the Johnson administration's Vietnam War policy.
Just as Lyndon Johnson dispatched Robert McNamara and brought in Washington wizard Clark Clifford when Plan A failed in Vietnam, so too, it was speculated, Bush might bid farewell to the architect of his Plan A, Donald Rumsfeld, and bring in the Houdini of contemporary statecraft, Baker, to run Plan B.
When criticism mounted over the Vietnam War, President Lyndon Johnson called on Washington power-broker Clark Clifford to make an independent assessment.
Basing his work on interviews with participants ranging from the ships crew to then Secretary of Defense Clark Clifford, he reconstructs the events that led to the ships capture for a popular audience.
When Reagan arrived in Washington, the establishment, in the famous words of Democratic scion Clark Clifford, regarded him as an "amiable dunce.
Former JFK/LBJ whiz kid Clark Clifford called Reagan an "amiable dunce," and historian Edmund Morris found Reagan's life so vapid that he actually made up characters and anecdotes in hopes of producing a more compelling biography.
He totes his beloved beagle while perusing confidential missives and strives to engage his friend Clark Clifford (Donald Sutherland) to join his administration, only to be rebuked: ``You don't need an attorney - you need a magician'' to fix the situation in Vietnam, he's told.