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Conservatives Rally at Madison Square Garden

Mar. 7, 1962 - Nearly 18,000 conservatives staged a spectacular rally in Madison Square Garden tonight. They acclaimed Senator Barry Goldwater of Arizona as a Republican Presidential possibility for 1964 and hissed and booed at the name of President Kennedy. The conservative outpouring had been arranged by the 18-month-old Young Americans for Freedom. The gathering was a festive occasion, and its sponsors were proud of having filled the Garden. Behind the speakers was a huge slogan: “Conservative Rally for World Liberation from Communism.” Senator Goldwater was introduced as “the conservatives’ choice for President.” The band burst into “The Battle Hymn of the Republic.” Balloons burst. “Conservatism,” Senator Goldwater proclaimed, is “young, virulent and alive.” It is “the wave of the future,” he said, “come to life after 30 years of apathy.” The most sweeping political prescriptions — each greeted with cheers — came from Brent Bozell, an editor of The National Review, who demanded issuance of the following orders: “To the Joint Chiefs of Staff: Make the necessary preparations for a landing in Havana. To our commander in Berlin: Tear down the Wall. To our chief of mission in the Congo: Change sides. To the chief of the C.I.A.: You are under instructions to encourage liberation movements in every nation of the world under Communist domination including the Soviet Union itself.”

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