2012年2月22日水曜日

MI5 チャプリンは共産主義支持者ではない

チャプリンは共産主義支持者ではなかったようだ。
 チャールズ・チャプリンを共産主義支持者とみなす証拠はない-。FBI
からの要請を受け、MI5が1952年にチャプリンの素性を調べた結果、FBIの
疑いを否定する見解をまとめていたことが分かった。英国立公文書館が
17日、当時の機密文書を公表した。

MI5
・「チャップリンが共産主義支持者と言える証拠はなく、危険人物ではない。
 彼は赤狩りの犠牲者だ」と結論付けた。
・チャプリンは、南ロンドンのWalworth生まれ、本名 Israel Thornstein
 を証明する出生証明書は見つからなかった。
・スコットランドヤード公安部
 「チャプリンは、仏パリ近郊のFontainebleau生まれ」と主張
・MI6
 「チャプリンは、仏の出生証明書は見つからなかった。」

「ロンドン生まれ」と話していたが、公的機関から本名や
 出生地などを証明する書類は見つからなかった。

FBI
・冷戦時のマッカーシズムによる「赤狩り」で、1923年にチャップリンが
 米共産党へ隠れて寄付したとの報告による。

チャップリンの映画は、反戦映画としてのイメージしかないが、そのため
か、共産主義支持者とレッテルを貼られたようだ。
本当に、赤狩りの犠牲者のようだ。
貧困から脱出するため、米国→英国→スイスと移住し、死亡したが、
その後、墓荒らしにあった。死後も時々話題にあがり、資金集めか。

ビル・クリントン オバマは愛国者ではない


Charlie Chaplin's Limelight theme (original)


---英情報局機密文書 チャプリンは赤狩りの犠牲者---
2012年2月18日 夕刊
http://www.tokyo-np.co.jp/article/world/news/CK2012021802000191.html

 【ロンドン=有賀信彦】喜劇王チャールズ・チャプリンを共産主義支持者とみなす証拠はない-。米連邦捜査局(FBI)からの要請を受け、英情報局保安部(MI5)が一九五二年にチャプリンの素性を調べた結果、FBIの疑いを否定する見解をまとめていたことが分かった。英国立公文書館が十七日、当時の機密文書を公表した。
 第二次大戦後、ソ連との冷戦が始まった米国では、共産党員らを公職などから追放する「赤狩り」の嵐が吹き荒れた。チャプリンも、映画作品が共産主義的だとの批判が高まり、非米活動委員会が召喚命令を出すなど糾弾されていた。
 FBIはさらに確証を得ようと、チャプリンの出身国である英国に協力を依頼。MI5はソ連のスパイだった英国人映画監督からロンドンに滞在していたチャプリンに向けた電報を傍受したが、単に友人として再会したいとの内容だった。
 MI5は他の情報も総合し「共産主義支持者と言える証拠はなく、危険人物ではない。彼は赤狩りの犠牲者だ」と結論付けた。
 調査で一つの謎が浮上した。チャプリンは「ロンドン生まれ」と話していたが、MI5が調べても、公的機関から本名や出生地などを証明する書類は見つからなかったという。
 ただ英BBC放送は「当時はすべての出生が登録されたわけではない」と指摘している。


---MI5 drew a blank on finding Charlie Chaplin birthplace---
17 February 2012 Last updated at 08:54 GMT
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-17072165

Newly released files show that an investigation by MI5 failed to determine where the silent film star Charlie Chaplin was born.

The inquiry was requested by the US in 1952 when it was trying to prove Chaplin was a communist sympathiser.

MI5 found that Chaplin, who grew up in London before moving to the US, had left-wing sympathies but nothing more.

At the time, Chaplin had been refused entry back into the US after attending a film premiere in London.

MI5 decided he was not a security risk but could not find his 1889 birth certificate, leading it to speculate he might not have been born in London.

But official Chaplin biographer David Robinson points out that not every birth was registered at that time in British history.

After the row, Chaplin decided not to return to live in the US and instead made his home in Switzerland, where he died in 1977. He filmed his final two movies in London.

He did return to the US to collect an honorary Oscar in 1972 and was also knighted by the UK in 1975.

Ed Hampshire, from the National Archives, said America and the UK were looking for different things in Chaplin's background.

"The American perspective was very much 'has Charlie Chaplin ever been a member of the Communist Party? That's the important thing'," he said.

"For the British it's all about 'is he a security risk or has he ever been a security risk, whether he's a member of the party or not'. They find no proof he's a member of the party and on top of that they find no proof that he's a security risk," added Mr Hampshire.

Chaplin's MI5 files will be free to download from the National Archives online for a month.

The file was opened in 1952, at the height of the McCarthyite witch-hunt during the Cold War, when it was reported he had made a covert donation to the American Communist Party back in 1923 when he was at the height of his fame.

Chaplin had come to London for the premiere of his latest film, Limelight, but was refused entry back into the US.

In 1953 Chaplin denied being a communist but was prevented from returning to his Hollywood home.

Chaplin was reportedly born in Walworth, south London, in April 1889 but MI5 agents apparently scoured the records and could find no trace of his birth certificate either under the name Chaplin or a supposed alias Israel Thornstein.

MI5 concluded: "It would seem that Chaplin was either not born in this country or that his name at birth was other than those mentioned."

Rumours that he may have been born in France were also dismissed by MI5 but when they reported back to the US, the American Secret Service was baffled as to why there was no trace of him.

Coincidentally, Chaplin is believed to have been born four days before Adolf Hitler, whom he parodied in the 1940 film The Great Dictator.


---MI5 files: Was Chaplin really a Frenchman and called Thornstein?---
By Tom Whitehead, Security Editor
12:01AM GMT 17 Feb 2012
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/defence/9086510/MI5-files-Was-Chaplin-really-a-Frenchman-and-called-Thornstein.html

MI5 investigated whether Charlie Chaplin was actually a Frenchman called Israel Thornstein, previously secret files on the Hollywood film star have revealed.

Intelligence officers could find no trace of the actor's birth in Britain despite Chaplin always claiming he was born in London in 1889.

The mystery surrounding his origins emerged when the US authorities asked MI5 to look into the comic actor's background after he left America in 1952 under a cloud of suspicion over his communist links.

But British officers could find no birth certificate and the earliest official record was a passport issued in 1920.

They investigated suggestions he was born in Fontainebleau, near Paris, or nearby Melun, while the Americans claimed his real name was Israel Thornstein and raised the idea he may have been a Russian Jew.

Despite extensive searches, MI5 could find no evidence of any of the claims leaving his true origins a mystery to this day.

However, British intelligence rejected American claims that Chaplin was a high-risk communist, concluding that while he may have been a “sympathiser” he was no more than a “progressive or radical”.

Agents here accepted his name had “been exploited in the interests of communism as one of the victims of 'McCarthyism' - the US anti-communist campaign led by Senator Joe McCarthy - but said he was not a security risk.

It is the first time the files kept by MI5 on Chaplin have been made public and show the extent to which agents went in checking his background.

The star said he was born on April 16 1889 in East Street, Walworth, south London - just four days before the birth of Adolf Hitler, whom he lampooned in his classic 1940 film The Great Dictator.

But after scouring the files at Somerset House in London for his birth certificate, MI5 concluded: "It would seem that Chaplin was either not born in this country or that his name at birth was other than those mentioned."

Scotland Yard's Special Branch added to the intrigue by passing on a tip from a source who claimed the actor was born near Fontainebleau, just south of Paris.

The police memo said: "There may or may not be some truth in this, but in view of the fact that no documentary proof has been obtained that Chaplin was born in the United Kingdom, it may well be that he was in fact born in France."

MI6, Britain's foreign intelligence service, investigated further but found no trace of Chaplin's birth in France either.

John Marriott, then head of MI5's counter-subversion branch, was not convinced that the absence of a birth certificate was a matter of concern for the intelligence services.

He wrote: "It is curious that we can find no record of Chaplin's birth, but I scarcely think that this is of any security significance."

One possible answer to the mystery emerged last year when Chaplin’s family found a letter in a locked drawer suggesting he had been born on a gipsy camp in Smethwick, near Birmingham.

The note was sent to the star in the early 1970s from Jack Hill who said his own aunt was a Gypsy Queen and he had been born in her caravan.

It is known Chaplin’s mother Hannah had the maiden name Hill and descended from travellers.

Having escaped grinding poverty to launch a career in British music-hall, Chaplin moved to the US in 1910 and made a series of hugely successful films in Hollywood in his famous persona of the "Little Tramp".

But in the early 1950s, when Washington was in the grip of McCarthyist paranoia about Soviet infiltration, he was reviled in the US as a communist sympathiser.

There was further controversy about his two marriages to 16-year-old girls, failure to take American citizenship, and claims he fathered an illegitimate child and owed 2 million dollars in back taxes.

Chaplin and his family sailed to Britain in September 1952 to attend the premiere of his new film Limelight.

While they were out of the country, US Attorney General James McGranery announced he would deny the actor a re-entry permit because of his alleged Soviet connections.

Chaplin's MI5 files, released by the National Archives in Kew, west London, show agents here agreed that he had given funds to communist front organisations but that the US could not prove party membership.

And a note sent to the MI5’s East Africa liaison officer ahead of a safari holiday Chaplin took in Kenya in February-March 1958 shows that MI5 were unimpressed by Washington's claims of communist links, which “do not impress us”.

It stated: "We have no substantial information of our own against Chaplin, and we are not satisfied that there are reliable grounds for regarding him as a security risk.

"His name has, of course, been exploited in the interests of communism as one of the victims of 'McCarthyism' ...

"It may be that Chaplin is a communist sympathiser, but on the information before us he would appear to be no more than a 'progressive' or radical."

Files released by The National Archives in 2002 showed that the British Government blocked Chaplin's knighthood for nearly 20 years because of US concern about his colourful private life and political affiliations.

He was eventually knighted in March 1975 and died at his home in Switzerland on Christmas Day 1977, aged 88.

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