DOLLY: The Italians here staged their huge block party in
Columbus Circle June 29. On July 23, the Attorney General
and the President suddenly discovered that terms like Mafia
and Cosa Nostra offend "decent Italian Americans." We did
the best story on it (attached). You want to bear in mind
that terms like Mafia and Cosa Nostra originated with of-
ficial government sources (like J. Edgar Hoover), not the
press. In Sicily when they want to be kind to the Mafioso
they identify the Mafia as "The Benevolent Society" or "The
Band of Brothers"; this would not be helpful for us.
The Mafia, in general usage, goes back to the Twenties,
when it was known as the Unione Siciliana (and the Black
Hand before that). It was Joe Valachi, under Robert Kennedy's
wing, who moved the name another stage along to Cosa Nostra
(Our Thing). There are government documents by the ton so ident-
ifying the Italian crime cartel. There is no doubt of its exist-
ence: the Columbus Day party was preceded by the endless picket-
ing of the FBI staged by the (certified) Joe Colombo Cosa Nostra
What would the government have us call it now?
Make it "organized crime syndicate," Mr. Mitchell
Once there was a Garment Center Mob (Lepke & Gurrah)
and this was synonymous with Jews.
Once there were gangs known as the Gophers and the
Hudson Dusters and this meant Irish.
Once there was a Bug & Meyer Mob--and this was Jews.
Once there were Tongs--and that was Chinese.
All absolutely correct.
I submit that the Attorney General and his leader
should really be directing their efforts and their energies
to wiping out the Mafia, or Cosa Nostra if you will, instead
of making the name disappear. The Mafia represents
a much greater peril to this nation than the occasional