Tell us more about your 'normal tricks'.
Actually, you are not calling other COBOL porgrams in the cases where you are
succeeding. Instead you are calling submodules, the interface into these
matches the expectation of the CALL.
If you can infact call other languages from your development environment, then
create a C language object module (one with just the function you can call from
COBOL, no main() in the C routine). Have that intermediate do a C
Some COBOLs may not have that facility built-in. You will need to learn enough
about calling submodules across languages to get your COBOL parms down to the C
intermediary, so that it can do the exec() or spawn() you want dynamically.
There may be system calls or execute verbs in some COBOLs, and maybe someone
knows that particular in VACOBOL. But the various *.EXE files you name are not
subroutines so the bindings to those do not look at all like a COBOL sub
Tell us more about your 'tricks.'