(June 27, 1901 – January 8, 1983) was an American Communist
and a lifelong member of the Socialist Workers Party
Tom Kerry was born in Boston
, the son of Irish
immigrants. Kerry was radicalized to the socialist movement during World War I
and he joined the youth organization of the Socialist Party of America
. Like many other young socialists, Kerry was inspired by the Russian Revolution
of 1917 and he became a Communist.
However, after the end of the war, Kerry drifted away from politics, but he was radicalized again during the Great Depression
in the 1930s. Tom Kerry and his wife Karolyn joined the Trotskyist
Movement led by James P. Cannon
and became on of the early members of the Socialist Workers Party
at its foundation in 1938. Tom Kerry was elected to the party’s National Committee
, a position he held for many decades.
During World War II
, when many of the leaders of the Socialist Workers Party
, (including James P. Cannon
, Farrell Dobbs
and Carl Skoglund
) were sent to prison by the Smith Act
for opposing American intervention in the war, Tom Kerry became one of the most important “free” leaders of the party.
In 1953 when James Cannon decided to retire from the post as National Secretary
, he was succeeded by Farrell Dobbs
and Tom Kerry became Dobbs' closest collaborator. Kerry was made Organizational Secretary
Kerry wrote a lot of political articles and some Marxist
books. He retired from active party work in the mid 1970s, but remained in the......