Government & Constitution

Frank McNamara, Rest in Peace

Francis J. "Frank" McNamara, 91, a World War II Army Intelligence officer and counterintelligence expert, died Feb. 27 from complications of cancer at a hospice in the Washington, D.C. area.  Mr. McNamara, a frequent contributor to HUMAN EVENTS, was decorated by the Nationalist Chinese government for his service in Northern Burma during World War II.  He later became editor of "Counterattack," an important weekly newsletter in the 1950s dealing with communism and internal security.

As chief of research and then staff director of the House Committee on Un-American Activities in the 1960s, he turned out a wealth of well-documented information on Soviet espionage and Communist activities in the United States. His report, "Patterns of Communist Espionage," became a congressional best-seller.  He also directed the most far-reaching investigation of the Ku Klux Klan ever undertaken by the Congress, a probe that led to thousands of resignations from that organization.

AS frequent contributor to HUMAN EVENTS, Mr. McNamara wrote numerous articles dealing with national security.  During the Gerald Ford Administration, he sharply criticized the Levi Guidelines, which he thought made it virtuallly impossible for the FBI to collect even public information on subversive organizations and individuals.  As a result of his criticisms, the Reagan Administration substantially changed the guidelines.

Mr. McNamara lived in the Bethesda-Chevy Chase area in Maryland for over 50 years.  His wife of 55 years, Katherine Foley McNamara, died in 2000.  Survivors include his daughters Jane M. Bieber, of Boston, Mass., and Ellen M. Delage of Silver Spring, Md.  He also leaves a granddaughter, Thea A. Delage.