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John Simkin

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  1. Article in today's Al-Jazeerah http://www.aljazeerah.info/Opinion%20Editorials/2012/June/16%20o/Why%20Israelis%20Assassinated%20John%20and%20Robert%20Kennedy%20By%20Benjamin%20Merhav.htm Why Israelis Assassinated John and Robert Kennedy By Benjamin Merhav Al-Jazeerah, CCUN, June 16, 2012 The 5th of June, 2012 marks 45 years since the Blitzkrieg zionist invasion of Egypt by the zionist apartheid regime of Israel, in collusion and with the collaboration of the USA rulers. It is also 44 years since the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy, by the zionist Gestapo in the USA, also in collaboration with the USA rulers. There is a close connection between the two heinous crimes. The reason Robert Kennedy was assassinated was that he had committed himself to reopen - upon his election as USA president - the investigation into the assassination of his brother, J.F. Kennedy. on the 22nd of November, 1963. President J.F. Kennedy was assassinated by the zionist Gestapo in Dallas, Texas, USA (See my 18th letter to the Attorney General of Australia http://5thautobiography.blogspot.com/2009/05/my-eighteenth-open-letter-to-attorney.html), also in collaboration with the then Vice President L.B. Johnson, with the CIA and with the FBI. Obviously, those culprits have been fearful of being exposed and punished as a result of a new investigation which would be appointed by Robert Kennedy. However, let us return to our main subject, namely, the huge zionist Blitzkrieg war crime of the 5th of June, 1967, and deal with the heinous assassination of Robert Kennedy later on. As Vice President, L.B. Johnson represented the fascist and imperialist section of the American ruling class, namely, the huge transnational corporations. He therefore opposed the peaceful and liberal policies of President J.F. Kennedy in Vietnam, in the Middle East and elsewhere in the world. L.B. Johnson was very accommodating to the zionist Gestapo's plot to assassinate President Kennedy, and thereby make him the boss in the White House. The secret zionist nuclear bombs factory in Dimona must have been part of his deal with the zionist Gestapo, because no USA inspectors have visited the secret zionist reactor since, as President J.F. Kennedy demanded until his assassination. Moreover, L.B. Johnson was so happy with the "success" of the assassination that he immediately elevated the zionist Gestapo to the status of USA imperialism's global spearhead. Accordingly, he immediately began to plot secretly the zionist Blitzkrieg invasion of June 1967. The clear proof of that appeared during that invasion when he allowed the zionist military to torpedo and bombard the USS Liberty which was monitoring the zionist invasion off the coast of Gaza. Returning now to the zionist Gestapo's assassination of Robert F. Kennedy, we must remember that the only people who committed themselves to investigating the truth about the assassination of JFK had been the murdered president's brother, Robert F. Kennedy, who would be assassinated by the same culprits/criminals in 1968 (see : http://breakfornews.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=10460 and see also http://www.thecornerreport.com/index.php?p=1014&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1 and also http://www.rense.com/politics6/sirhan.htm ) ; and then his son John F. Kennedy Jr. who would be assassinated by the same culprits/criminals in 1999 (see : http://whatreallyhappened.com/RANCHO/CRASH/JFK_JR/jj.php and see also http://havetoremember.wordpress.com/2007/11/20/the-assassination-of-john-f-kennedy-jr/ ). There has been a new development earlier this year in the USA. An eye witness to the assassination of Robert Kennedy came out publicly with accusations against the cover-up by the FBI (see : http://edition.cnn.com/2012/04/28/justice/california-rfk-second-gun/index.html; http://www.theprovince.com/news/Vancouver+woman+witnessed+Robert+Kennedy+assassination+cites+second/6541269/story.html; http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/witness+Robert+Kennedy+assassination+cites+second+gunman+complete/6543214/story.html
  2. I thought members might be interested in reading this article? http://www.swnewsherald.com/online_content...hor_kennedy.php Why Would Oswald Have Hidden the Gun? By JACOB G. HORNBERGER More observations on the great book I just finished reading on the Kennedy assassination — Breach of Trust: How the Warren Commission Failed the Nation and Why by Gerald D. McKnight, which I blogged about on Wednesday and Thursday. One of the most amazing aspects of both the FBI and the Warren Commission, which McKnight carefully documents and footnotes, is how both groups immediately reached the conclusion that Oswald was the lone assassin and then proceeded to simply suppress, ignore, or disregard evidence to the contrary. For example, the FBI concluded that 2 shots hit Kennedy and 1 shot hit Connally, for a total of 3 shots. When the media reported that a bystander named James Tague also got hit by a bullet, the FBI simply ignored it because 4 shots would have meant more than one shooter. The Warren Commission, however, decided that it had to deal with the Tague shooting, which is how it ended up with the “magic-bullet” theory. Realizing that 4 bullets would have meant more than one shooter, the commission decided that one bullet hit Tague and one bullet hit Kennedy in the head and that the third bullet went through both Kennedy and Connally, causing 7 different wounds, including cracking Connally’s ribs and going through his wrist bone, and ending up going into his thigh. While most everyone is familiar with the controversy surrounding the route of the magic bullet, McKnight focuses on the near-pristine nature of the bullet and points out that the wrist bone is one of the hardest bones in the body. Thus, the chance that a bullet could crack ribs and go through the wrist and remain fairly unscathed is minimal. And in fact, Warren Commission experts performed many tests in which bullets were fired into the wrists of cadavers. Unlike the Kennedy bullet, the bullets fired in the tests were clearly deformed or flattened. So, guess what the Warren Commission did. You guessed it: It simply suppressed the results of the tests because they didn’t fit within the preconceived conclusion that only 3 shots were fired. There are two conspiracy theories with respect to Oswald: (1) He shot Kennedy as part of a conspiracy, and (2) He was an innocent person who was set up to take the fall, so as to distract attention away from the real conspirators. After he was arrested, Oswald himself claimed to be a “patsy” and, according to McKnight, Oswald told investigators that he had been on the first floor of the School Book Depository building, not the sixth floor, when the assassination took place. In support of Oswald’s claim, McKnight cites the statements of two separate women who said that they entered the stairwell within a minute of the assassination and never saw Oswald coming down the stairs. Their testimony wasn’t taken seriously by the Warren Commission. Another interesting point that McKnight points out is that Oswald’s rifle was very carefully hidden in the 6th-floor room where the assassination purportedly took place. It was lodged between two boxes with another box on top, which made it difficult for searchers to find it. Now, ask yourself: Why in the world would Oswald have taken the time to carefully hide the gun before he made his escape. After all, it’s not as if the gun would never be found, especially given that there were 3 spent cartridges in plain sight on the floor and it was certain that the entire room would eventually be searched. Wouldn’t a rapid escape, not hiding the gun in the same room as the shooting, be the sole concern of an assassin? So, if Oswald had lived, continued to claim his innocence, and gone to trial, wouldn’t his defense attorney have argued that the hidden gun would be much more consistent with a set-up, one in which someone had previously hidden the gun in the room to ensure that no one discovered it before the shooting? And wouldn’t he also have argued that the near-pristine bullet had been planted on Connally’s stretcher after having been fired into, say, a stack of cotton from the planted gun rather than into Kennedy’s back and Connolly’s back, ribs, wrist, and thigh. Unfortunately, these types of questions linger because both the FBI and the Warren Commission were fixated on their lone-nut assassin theory and refused to consider any other alternatives, as McKnight so carefully documents in his excellent book.
  3. Alexander Irwin Rorke

    Alexander Irwin Rorke, the son of Alexander Rorke, a Manhattan district attorney, was born on 9th August 1926. After graduating from St. John's University he attended the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service. During the Second World War Rorke served as a military intelligence specialist in the U.S. Army. He was responsible for the security of five German provinces and participated in the first postwar roundup of Communist agents in the Allied military zones of Germany. After the war Rorke married Jacqueline Billingsley, the daughter of Sherman Billingsley, the owner of the New York Stork Club. Rorke became a freelance newsman. According to a declassified FBI document, Rorke began working for the CIA in 1960. His contact officer was Commander Anderson of the United States Navy who was assigned to the CIA office in New York. Rorke later joined Frank Sturgis, in attempts to overthrow the government of Fidel Castro in Cuba. On 19th December 1961, Rorke and Sturgis, who was known as Frank Fiorini at the time, were involved in a CIA operation that included dropping over 250,000 anti-Castro leaflets on Cuba. Rorke was later interviewed by the FBI about these anti-Castro activities. The FBI report on this interview stated: "Rorke advised that in the event Fiorini would be arrested for his anti-Castro activities, he, Rorke, having good connections with a well-known newspaper chain, will make plenty of trouble for those involved.For the information of the Bureau, the newspaper chain, will make plenty of trouble for those involved." Rorke and Geoffrey Sullivan made several flights over Cuba, including a bombing raid on a refinery area near Havana on 25th April 1963. Later that year Rorke began working for Luis Somoza, former president of Nicaragua. Jacqueline Rorke said her husband told her he was going to Mangua to see Somoza about opening an export-import business, but that he and Sullivan filed a flight plan in Fort Lauderdale for Panama. After refueling at Cozumel, they changed the flight plan to make Tegucigalpa, Honduras, their destination. Rorke and Sullivan and a passenger identified as Enrique Molina Garcia, took off from Fort Lauderdale, Florida on 24th September, 1963. Later that day their aircraft disappeared while flying over Cuba. According to a statement released by Sherman Billingsley: "They were last seen when they were kidnapped or captured and are being held by the agents of an unfriendly government or, possibly, by that government itself." Rorke was declared legally dead in 1968. This interesting statement is to be found in a brief biography on the web by D C McJonathan-Swarm. His plane, flown by commercial pilot Geoffery Sullivan, disappeared on 24 September 1963 enroute to Cuba just two months before the Kennedy assassination. His father-in-law, Sherman Billingsley, held a press conference at the Stork club offering a $25,000 reward for his return with that of his pilot. It was rumored that the CIA was involved because of his friendship with and allegiance to Kennedy. In 1975 the CIA described him a "former witting collaborator (relationship terminated)." J Edgar Hoover wrote "No. I do not want in any way to get involved in this....H" on papers pertaining to correspondence and inquires by Billingsley.
  4. I have been asked by a friend to post the following: High CIA officials have repeatedly expressed their total faith in Yuri Nosenko as a genuine defector. You can feel the power of that faith in the following certitudes, all expressed in writing or sworn testimony (and cited in the 2007 book Spy Wars: Moles, Mysteries and Deadly Games by Tennent H. Bagley): • "There is "no reason to believe that Nosenko is other than what he has claimed to be." • "He defected of his own free will and has not sought to deceive us." • "Anything he has said has been said in good faith." • If any contradiction appeared in his reporting, it "is in no way indicative of KGB dispatch." • Any untruths that Nosenko might inadvertently have told were "not at the behest of the KGB." • "Any claim we [in CIA] may have left to having served in an honorable and dignified profession dictates that we accept the Agency's judgment in this case - that Nosenko was always bona fide and our colleagues [who suspected him] made a terrible mistake." Many general reasons have been cited to support such conclusions. Here are some of them: i) As every intelligence professional is aware, neither the KGB nor any other intelligence service would, all other things being equal, send one of its own genuine staff officers as a false defector into enemy hands. The risk would be too great that he might be influenced or pressured there to tell what he really knows - including the very truth the deception operation was intended to hide. ii) The Soviet regime sentenced Nosenko to death in absentia and several KGB sources have said that the KGB was looking for him with the intent to assassinate him. iii) Real KGB staffers are said by insiders to have suffered real punishment as a result of his defection or as a result of their misbehavior uncovered by the KGB investigation of it. iv) After he was cleared of CIA's suspicions, Nosenko remained in the United States for the nearly forty years remaining in his life, became an American citizen, and helped Western operations against the KGB -- things hardly compatible with a motive to deceive. v) Later defectors from the KGB have testified to the genuineness of his defection and its damage to the Soviet regime (though none has confirmed details of his KGB career). vi) Repeated CIA reviews and analyses of the case over thirty years have again and again cleared Nosenko of all suspicion. vii) CIA insiders have stated under oath that Nosenko has told only the truth as best he could and that nothing he has said contradicts what genuine KGB defectors have reported (though in fact much does). viii) Nosenko named a lot of KGB SCD officers, and exposed many "cases" - never mind that not one of the KGB spies (or "cases") he revealed was (at the time he revealed them) still active, producing NATO-government secrets, and previously unsuspected by Western counterintelligence -- i.e. not one exceeded what the KGB would willingly sacrifice to build credibility of a false defector. ix) An official KGB document in the so-called "Mitrokhin archive" tells of the (genuine) defector Nosenko's ranting about questions of his rank. (Never mind that this document contradicted Nosenko's own account of his career and never mind that many documents with false or misleading information are known to have been inserted in official KGB files to hide or obscure sensitive information.) But these are only generalities. Even if true - which many of the above are not - generalities cannot dispel specific doubts that arise in counterintelligence investigations. It is by their errors of detail, sometimes tiny, that deceivers inadvertently betray their deceit. Given the depth of CIA's faith in Nosenko, one might suppose that it has considered and satisfactorily resolved every such specific doubt. If it has not, its faith rests on shaky ground. In fact, there is no indication that CIA ever answered the extraordinary and unprecedented number of questions that arose about the defector Yuri Nosenko. Here is a sample of thirty of them, with references to the pages where they are discussed in Spy Wars. Nosenko claimed that through the entire years 1960-61 he was deputy chief of the American-Embassy section of the American department of the Second Chief Directorate (SCD) of the KGB. It was this post (especially his claim to have there personally supervised all KGB work against the embassy's code clerks and security officer) that gave him access to all the most important information he gave CIA. 1. Why then, while supervising this top-priority work, was Nosenko performing low-level tasks for a different department? (Spy Wars pp. 94-95, 160-62, 235, 250, 280) [He himself described his activity during this period, handling street-level homosexual provocateurs of the Tourist Department, recruiting homosexual tourists (one as far away as Sofia), helping the Tourist Department chief in meeting a visiting American travel agent, and traveling abroad repeatedly as watchdog for Soviet industrial delegations.] 2. Why did at least three KGB insiders later state that Nosenko never held that position? [They included i) a visitor to that section at the time, ii) a former member of the section itself, and iii) a former head of foreign counterintelligence, Oleg Kalugin. 3. How does one explain Nosenko's many changes of stories about his KGB career, even about when and how he entered service, and the evidence that the stories were false? (pp. 93, 160-62, 235, 248-50) .[Not a single KGB source during or after the Cold War, even among those who insisted that Nosenko genuinely defected, has confirmed the dates and assignments of his claimed KGB career.] 4. How does one explain Nosenko's authoritative claim that, up to the time he defected, the KGB did not recruit any American Embassy code clerk? (pp. 156-59, 241-42) [in fact that section of the KGB recruited at least one code clerk and there were compelling signs that Nosenko was hiding the truth about two others.] 5. Why was Nosenko unaware of the operational mission to Helsinki during that period of his direct subordinate Kosolapov as part of a promising attempt to recruit an American Embassy cipher clerk? (pp. 157-60, 242) 6. How could Nosenko err by an entire year - and thus destroy his story about holding this job - by reporting i) that under his supervision KGB surveillants had spotted the American Embassy security officer visiting a certain dead drop site in late 1960 and ii) that for many weeks thereafter, as supervisor, he had received regular reports on the KGB's stakeout of that site. (pp. 88-89, 147-50, 186, 203-4) [The visit actually happened in late 1961, so any stakeout would have been conducted after Nosenko left the job.] 7. Why did Nosenko fail to mention that dead drop visit when he was telling CIA in 1962 about his coverage of the security officer? (pp. 16, 147, 203) 8. If Nosenko was personally watching over the American Embassy's security officer, why did he not know that the officer traveled from Moscow to his ancestral homeland Annenia? (Nosenko himself recognized that his failure to answer this question undermined his whole life story.) (pp. 186-87) Nosenko preserved and brought to Geneva in 1964 the KGB's authorization for his travel in December 1963 to search for a fleeing KGB officer, Vladimir Cherepanov. (pp. 87, 167-68, 250-51) 9. How did he keep this document and why did he bring it to Geneva, whereas KGB regulations - as Nosenko agreed -- required that it be turned in before the next payday and before any further official travel could be authorized? 10. Why was that travel authorization (signed by the SCD chief Gribanov) made out to "Lt. Col. Nosenko", the rank he claimed, whereas under detailed questioning he admitted having been only a captain (as even the KGB now confirms)? 11. Is it mere coincidence that in 1962, long before this erroneous travel authorization, he was already lying about his rank, then calling himself a major,? 12. Why was it "Colonel" Nosenko's story that a Soviet official journalist tried to peddle to the Western press shortly after Nosenko's defection in 1964? (page 163) 13. And why would Nosenko be sent out to search for Cherepanov if, as suggested in questions 1-7 above, Nosenko was not deputy chief of the SCD's American-Embassy section? Nosenko in 1962 volunteered information that his boss Kovshuk had traveled to the United States five years earlier to restore contact with a KGB-recruited American cipher-machine mechanic codenamed "Andrey." [it became evident that the real reason for Kovshuk's travel was to exploit the KGB recruitment of a CIA officer.] (pp. 67-71, 185) 14. Is it mere coincidence that just when Nosenko was telling CIA about Kovshuk's trip, the two KGB officers closest to him in Geneva, his sole KGB companion there, Yuri Guk, and his hotel roommate Kislov, were precisely the two KGB operatives who had worked with Kovshuk on that trip? 15. Why did Nosenko, having read Kislov's KGB file, certify to CIA that Kislov had no connection with the KGB? (pp. 65-67) 16. Why did Nosenko in 1962 say (and repeat) that "Andrey" was recruited in "1949¬1950" but later, in 1964, report that he himself had been in the KGB (entered 1953) while "Andrey" was still in Moscow? 17. Nosenko told CIA in 1962 that he had personally participated in the KGB Moscow attempt to recruit CIA officer Edward Ellis Smith. Why then did he in 1964 deny any knowledge of the name or the case? (p. 188) Other questions: 18. Why did he refer in 1962 to KGB relations with the Finnish president, but then in 1964 deny any knowledge of it? (p. 186) 19. How does one explain Nosenko's mention in 1962 of the name "Zepp" - which at that moment was of intense interest to KGB counterintelligence - and his failure to recognize the name by early 1964? (pp. 15-16, 150-55, 162, 203) 20. If Nosenko was really in Geneva in 1962 and 1964 as the security watchdog of a Soviet conference delegation, as he claimed, why did even his KGB bosses say, after the Cold War, that he had gone there for other, "serious operational purposes"? (pp. 5, 237, 253) 21. How does one explain Nosenko's inability to describe even the most routine KGB procedures? (pp. 83-86, 191-92, 251-55) 22. How come this eleven-year veteran of KGB CI operations was unable to disclose to the U.S. a single KGB spy who at the time of uncovering, i) was still active and ii) had current access to US or NATO-country official secrets and iii) had previously been unsuspected by Western counterintelligence? 23. Is it true, as Nosenko authoritatively reported, having heard it from three different KGB authorities directly involved, that it was by chance Moscow surveillance of British diplomats that the KGB first learned of the treason of CIA's great spy Oleg Penkovsky? [KGB authorities have since denied it and suggested that the source was a mole.] (pp. 2I-22, 86-87, 235, 243) Nosenko highlighted to CIA in 1962 that the KGB first uncovered Pyotr Popov, CIA's spy in the GRU (Military Intelligence) by chance surveillance of an American diplomat mailing a letter in Moscow in late January 1959. (pp. 11-12, 16-17, 24, 68¬75, 189, 241-43) 24. How does one equate this with the KGB's later admission that the GRU chief was fired from his post as a result of Popov's treason, almost two months before the letter mailing? 25. Or with the fact that KGB surveillants spotted Popov meeting CIA twice, at least two weeks before the letter mailing? 26. Or with the KGB's admission, in a book published in Moscow in 2000, that it had earlier recruited Edward Ellis Smith, the CIA officer who had supported the Popov case in Moscow? Nosenko claimed inside knowledge about Lee Harvey Oswald in the Soviet Union, having participated in early decisions when Oswald defected to the USSR and later having read the KGB file on Oswald. Later, the KGB chairman at the time and other KGB veterans denied it and stated that Nosenko was lying about this. (So too did the House Select Committee on Assassinations after interviewing Nosenko many times in 1977-78.) (pp. 83-86, 95-96, 191, 210, 249) 27. If Nosenko did not have his claimed access to the Oswald case and did not really study the KGB's file, where did he get his information? And why does he continue to make that claim to this day? After the Cold War much was learned about a previously unknown SCD department for operational deception, which was actively handing false sources to Western intelligence services to mislead them. It was learned that this department was closely supervised by Nosenko's sponsor General Oleg Gribanov. And that among its officers were Nosenko's friend Yuri Guk, who was meeting Nosenko before and after each CIA meeting in Geneva in 1962 (pp. 6, 9, 66, 236); Aleksandr Kislov, who was rooming with Nosenko in Geneva in 1962 (p. 7, 66, 70-71, 235, 236); and Vladimir Chelnokov, who took him along on an operational mission to Odessa in 1960 (p. 235). 28. Why did Nosenko not report on the existence of this department? 29. Why did Nosenko not tell that his close KGB associates at various times were members of it? 30. Is it mere coincidence that Nosenko replayed to CIA in 1962 each of these specific cases that six months earlier had been compromised to the Americans by KGB defector Anatoly Golitsyn? i) Vassall (pp. 14, 24, 97, 179, 187, 189, 206, 261) ii) Preisfreund (pp. 25, 28, 158-59) iii) Belitsky (pp. 17, 25, 179) iv) Kovshuk's "trip" to Washington (pp. 24, 65-66, 69, 75-78) v) Nine others including a Canadian and a French ambassador and a French businessman (pp. 4, 14, 25, 165, 206). While an objective observer tries to answer each of these thirty questions in a manner consistent with his answers to the other questions, a thirty-first question will have occurred to him. How could so many questions - even a fraction of this number - have arisen about any genuine defector?
  5. A good friend has sent me a copy of a CIA monograph published in October, 1993. It was obtained under the JFK Act in November, 2003. The document is written by Cleveland C. Cram, who worked for the CIA between 1949 and 1975, eventually serving as Chief of Station in Europe and the Western Hemisphere. Cram was a member of the CIA’s Center for the Study of Intelligence (CSI). Established in February 1975 as an in-house think tank, its publications were used for in-service training. The document is entitled “Of Moles and Molehunters: A Review of Counterintelligence Literature”. Cram looks at the reliability of information found in books about the American and British intelligence agencies. It is in fact very revealing as it looks at the sources that the authors used and the conclusions they came to in their books. Cram praises certain authors for writing accurate accounts of these covert activities. He is especially complimentary about the following authors: David C. Martin (Wilderness of Mirrors), Gordon Brook-Shepherd (The Storm Birds), Andrew Boyle (The Climate of Treason), David Wise (Molehunt) and Thomas Mangold (Cold Warrior). Cram points out that these authors managed to persuade former CIA officers to tell the truth about their activities. In some cases, they were even given classified documents. Cram is particularly complimentary about the Wilderness of Mirrors, a book about the exploits of William Harvey and James Angleton. He points out that Martin does “not name his sources, footnote the book, or provide a bibliography and other academic paraphernalia” but is invariably accurate about what he says about the CIA. Cram adds that luckily Martin’s book did not sell well and is now a collectors item (I have just managed to order a copy from Abebooks – they still have other copies if you are interested). http://www.abebooks.co.uk/servlet/SearchRe...IRRORS&sortby=2 Cram is particularly critical of the work of Edward J. Epstein (Legend: The Secret World of Lee Harvey Oswald and Deception: The Invisible War Between the KGB and the CIA). Cram makes it clear that Epstein, working with James Angleton, was part of a disinformation campaign. Cram writes: “Legend… gave Angleton and his supporters an advantage by putting their argument adroitly – if dishonestly – before the public first. Not until David Martin responded with Wilderness of Mirrors was an opposing view presented coherently.”
  6. Bernardo De Torres

    When I produce a page on one of the people involved in the assassination of JFK, within a few days it is ranked first at Google (this is because of the large number of websites - about 170,000 - that link to my website). Interestingly, there is one exception to this. My page on Bernardo De Torres does not appear at the top. In fact, further research shows that the page has not been indexed by Google (this is done automatically every couple of days by its spider software). The only explanation is that someone at Google has consciously deleted it from the index. Torres obviously has some powerful friends. The fact that I am posting this should ensure that this page should appear in the Goggle index. It will be interesting to see if it does. http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKtorres.htm
  7. Hugh G. Aynesworth played an important role in the media cover-up of the assassination of JFK. He contacted me a few weeks ago and complained about what I had written about him on my website. I invited him to join the Forum where he would be free to point out where I had gone wrong. I has yet to accept the invitation. Aynesworth went to work for the Dallas Morning News in 1960. This is what he had to say about Joachim Joesten's Oswald, Assassin or Fall Guy? in the Dallas Morning News on 1st August, 1964: If you would listen to this one, he would have you thinking that Lee Harvey Oswald was a polite little misunderstood youth who just got mixed up in the wrong company... Oh how terrible, says Joesten (an ex-German who became a U.S. citizen in 1948 and must wonder why), poor little Lee Harvey was the victim of a ruthless plot headed by Dallas police leaders, District Attorney Henry Wade and his staff and a few "bad guys" from the FBI. Joesten further states that Oswald was an agent of both the FBI and the CIA (how's that for a 24-year-old who couldn't spell "wrist"?). It's the same old tripe with some new flavoring.... The tip-off is the foreword, wherein Joesten dedicates his book to "Mark Lane... the brilliant and courageous New York attorney...." Lane is the troublemaker who spent two day's in Dallas in January on his "investigation" and now pretends to be an expert on all aspects of the weird tragedy. Aynesworth was a strong supporter of the "lone assassin theory" and led the attacks on Mark Lane and his book on the Warren Commission, the pioneering Rush to Judgement (1965). In May, 1967 Aynesworth published a critical article of Jim Garrison in Newsweek: "Garrison's tactics have been even more questionable than his case. I have evidence that one of the strapping D.A.'s investigators offered an unwilling "witness" $3,000 and a job with an airline - if only he would "fill in the facts" of the alleged meeting to plot the death of the President. I also know that when the D.A.'s office learned that this entire bribery attempt had been tape-recorded, two of Garrison's men returned to the "witness" and, he says, threatened him with physical harm." Jim Garrison responded to this article in his book, On The Trail of the Assassins (1988). He argued that: "As for the $3,000 bribe, by the time I came across Aynesworth's revelation, the witness our office had supposedly offered it to, Alvin Babeouf, had admitted to us that it never happened. Aynesworth, of course, never explained what he did with the "evidence" allegedly in his possession. And the so-called bribery tape recording had not, in fact, ever existed." James DiEugenio has argued: "With the work of the Assassination Records Review Board, many more pages of documents have been released showing how tightly bound Aynesworth was with the intelligence community. It has been demonstrated that Aynesworth was - at the minimum - working with the Dallas Police, Shaw's defense team, and the FBI. He was also an informant to the White House, and had once applied for work with the CIA. As I have noted elsewhere, in the annals of this case, I can think of no reporter who had such extensive contacts with those trying to cover up the facts in the JFK case. And only two come close: Edward Epstein and Gerald Posner."
  8. Sherry Guitierrez provided an excellent presentation on Trajectory Analysis applied to the Assassination of JFK. Sherry has testified as an expert in crime scene reconstruction and bloodstain pattern analysis in over 30 judicial districts in the states of Louisiana, Mississippi and Florida. Sherry is currently employed as a consultant to attorneys and law enforcement officials. She is also a member of the International Association of Bloodstain Pattern Analysts and Association for Crime Scene Reconstruction. I found Sherry's views on the position of the gunman who fired the shot that hit JFK in the head very stimulating. I would be interested in what some of our gun experts think of this theory. Sherry is a member of the Forum and hopefully she will answer your questions. You will find the presentation here: http://www.jfklancerforum.com/sherryg/ The presentation ends with the following statement. The blood examined in photographs and films, and described in the statements of witnesses in the homicide of John Kennedy, seem to describe back spatter to the immediate front of the President. There is no conflict to this supposition within any witness statements or in any blood evidence documented in video and photographs. Additionally, the Zapruder film reveals a violent movement of JFK's head to the rear, corresponding to the targets in the experiments. Therefore, it is my opinion the bloodstain evidence is consistent with the injury to John F. Kennedy's head being the result of a single gunshot from the right front. On Saturday Sherry added that one possible location was the Post Office building. Any thoughts on this?
  9. In most discussions about the assassination of John F. Kennedy, it is very difficult to come to any definite conclusions. The main problem is the evidence is often incomplete and is of the type that is open to different interpretations. Therefore, the participants in any discussions, view the information mainly from their own established position on the assassination. As a result, it is very difficult to have any really meaningful discussion on the subject. However, thanks to the opening up of the KGB archives, we can look at some of this evidence and come to some definite conclusions. This includes the information provided by Yuri Nosenko, who defected to the United States in 1964. Before I look at what the KGB archives say about Nosenko's defection I want to consider the way senior figures in the CIA and FBI, such as Richard Helms, James Jesus Angleton and J. Edgar Hoover, dealt with this evidence. In doing so, I will show that their own interpretations were overwhelmingly influenced by their own ideological views and more importantly, their own political needs, at the time. In discussing this issue I will also show that this case shows that we have very little chance of discovering who planned and carried out the assassination of President Kennedy. In January 1964, Yuri Nosenko, deputy chief of the Seventh Department of the KGB, contacted the CIA in Geneva and said he was willing to defect to the United States. Once in custody he was interviewed by CIA officers (26th-27th February). He claimed that he had been put in charge of the KGB investigation into Lee Harvey Oswald when he defected in 1959. After interviewing Oswald it was decided by the KGB that he was not intelligent enough to work as an agent. They were also concerned that he was "too mentally unstable" to be of any use to them. It was Nosenko's department that recommended that Oswald's application for a re-entry visa be denied. Nosenko also claimed that he had the opportunity to see the KGB file on Oswald shortly after the assassination and it was clear that the Soviet Union was not involved in the death of John F. Kennedy. (1) Richard Helms, the CIA's Deputy Director of Plans, was one of those who was not convinced by Nosenko. In his autobiography, A Look Over My Shoulder (2003), he points out that Nosenko had been providing information to the CIA since June 1962. "From a security viewpoint, Nosenko's alleged background and Moscow assignment - he served in the American Department of the internal counter-intelligence service of the KGB - made him an extremely attractive source. His targets were American diplomatic and consular personnel, journalists, and tourists in the USSR. As an agent, he appeared to offer an inside view of high-priority KGB operations against the United States." (2) However, Helms and other senior figures in the CIA began to have doubts about the credibility of Nosenko. One of the reasons for this was the testimony of another Soviet defector, Anatoli Golitsyn, who had walked into the American embassy in December 1961 and asked for political asylum. (3) In these interviews Golitsyn argued that as the KGB would be so concerned about his defection, they would attempt to convince the CIA that the information he was giving them would be completely unreliable. He predicted that the KGB would send false defectors with information that contradicted what he was saying. Was this then the role of Yuri Nosenko? Richard Helms pointed out that even before Nosenko's arrival in February, the CIA had been having severe doubts about the truth of his testimony. Nosenko's case officer in June 1962, was Tennant H. Bagley. Later that year he was appointed as chief of counter-intelligence for the Soviet Bloc Division. On 19th December, 1963, he had circulated a twelve-page memo on the subject, recommending that if Nosenko recontacted the CIA he "should be regarded as under Soviet control". (4) Helms goes on to argue: "It was nineteen months... before Nosenko returned to Geneva. To our complete surprise, and contrary to his earlier statement, Nosenko abruptly announced that he now wanted to defect immediately. He insisted that his security had been compromised, that he would be arrested if he returned to Moscow. Then, with barely a pause, he delivered another surprise. In the days following President Kennedy's assassination. Nosenko informed us, he had reviewed the entire KGB file on Lee Harvey Oswald's three-year residence in the USSR. Nosenko assured us that the KGB had found Oswald unstable, had declined to have anything to do with him, and he was not in any way involved in President Kennedy's assassination." (5) According to Thomas Powers, the author of The Man Who Kept the Secrets: Richard Helms and the CIA (1979), Helms had a private meeting with Chief Justice Earl Warren in 1964, to tell him about the doubts he had about Nosenko. (6) Helms also later told a Senate Committee about the CIA's views on Nosenko in 1964: "Since Nosenko was in the agency's hands this became one of the most difficult issues that the agency had ever faced. Here a President of the United States had been murdered and a man had come from the Soviet Union, an acknowledged Soviet intelligence officer, and said his service had never been in touch with Oswald and knew nothing about him. This strained credulity at the time. It strains it to this day." (7) The main opponent of Nosenko at the CIA was James Jesus Angleton. Before looking at his thoughts on the defector it is worth looking at Angleton's state of mind at the time. 1963 had been a traumatic year for Angleton. On 23rd January, Kim Philby, had defected to the Soviet Union. Angleton was shattered by the news. Philby had been his close friend since 1942 when Angleton, an Office of Strategic Services (OSS) officer, was sent to England for his training. It was the start of a long friendship: "Once I met Philby, the world of intelligence that had once interested me consumed me. He had taken on the Nazis and Fascists head-on and penetrated their operations in Spain and Germany. His sophistication and experience appealed to us... Kim taught me a great deal." (8) In 1949 Kim Philby became SIS representative in Washington, as top British Secret Service officer working in liaison with the CIA and FBI. He also handled secret communications between the British prime minister, Clement Attlee and President Harry S. Truman. According to Ray Cline, it had been left to the Americans to select their preferred candidate and it was Angleton who was the main person advocating appointing Philby. (9) Philby wrote in My Secret War (1968): "At one stroke, it would take me right back into the middle of intelligence policy making and it would give me a close-up view of the American intelligence organisations." (10) Philby's home in Nebraska Avenue became a gathering place for Washington's intelligence elite. This included Walter Bedell Smith (Director of the CIA), Allen Dulles (Deputy Director of the CIA), Frank Wisner (head of the Office of Policy Coordination), James Jesus Angleton (head of staff Office of Policy Coordination), William K. Harvey (CIA counter-intelligence) and Robert Lamphere (FBI Soviet Section). Philby made a point of dropping in on the offices of American intelligence officers in the late afternoon, knowing that his hosts would sooner or later "suggest drifting out to a friendly bar for a further round of shop talk." (11) As one CIA officer pointed out: "Intelligence officers talk trade among themselves all the time... Philby was privy to a hell of a lot beyond what he should have known." (12) Philby was especially close to Angleton. Philby later explained they had lunch at Harvey's Restaurant every week: "We formed the habit of lunching once a week at Harvey's where he demonstrated regularly that overwork was not his only vice. He was one of the thinnest men I have ever met, and one of the biggest eaters. Lucky Jim! After a year of keeping up with Angleton, I took the advice of an elderly lady friend and went on a diet, dropping from thirteen stone to about eleven in three months. Our close association was, I am sure, inspired by genuine friendliness on both sides. But we both had ulterior motives. Angleton wanted to place the burden of exchanges between CIA and SIS on the CIA office in London - which was about ten times as big as mine. By doing so, he could exert the maximum pressure on SIS's headquarters while minimizing SIS intrusions into his own. As an exercise in nationalism, that was fair enough. By cultivating me to the full, he could better keep me under wraps. For my part, I was more than content to string him along. The greater the trust between us overtly, the less he would suspect covert action. Who gained most from this complex game I cannot say. But I had one big advantage. I knew what he was doing for CIA and he knew what I was doing for SIS. But the real nature of my interest was something he did not know." (13) When Donald Maclean defected in 1951 Philby became the chief suspect as the man who had tipped him off that he was being investigated. The main evidence against him was his close friendship with Guy Burgess (they had lived together in Washington), who had gone with Maclean to Moscow. Philby was recalled to London. CIA chief, Walter Bedell Smith ordered any officers with knowledge of Philby and Burgess to submit reports on the men. William K. Harvey replied that after studying all the evidence he was convinced that "Philby was a Soviet spy". (14) James Jesus Angleton reacted in a completely different way. In Angleton's estimation, Philby was no traitor, but an honest and brilliant man who had been cruelly duped by Burgess. According to Tom Mangold, "Angleton... remained convinced that his British friend would be cleared of suspicion" and warned Bedell Smith that if the CIA started making unsubstantiated charges of treachery against a senior MI6 officer this would seriously damage Anglo-American relations, since Philby was "held in high esteem" in London. (15) Bedell Smith, had been convinced by the report produced by Harvey and wrote directly to Stewart Menzies, the head of MI6, and made it clear that he considered that Philby was a Soviet spy and would not be permitted to return to Washington and urged the British government to "clean house regardless of whom may be hurt". Burton Hersh, the author of The Old Boys: The American Elite and the Origins of the CIA (1992), has claimed that the underlying message was blunt: "Fire Philby or we break off the intelligence relationship." (16) Dick White also wrote to Menzies suggesting that MI6 take action as a matter of urgency. Menzies refused to believe Philby was a Soviet spy but realised he would have to dismiss him. He agreed to give him a generous payoff, £4,000, equivalent to more than £32,000 today. Angleton was devastated when Philby defected in 1963. Philby and Angleton had thirty-six meetings at CIA headquarters between 1949 and 1951. Every one of the discussions were typed up by Angleton's secretary Gloria Loomis. This was also true of the weekly meeting they had at Harvey's Restaurant in Washington. Angleton was so ashamed about all the CIA secrets he had given to Philby he destroyed all these documents. Angleton told Peter Wright: "I had them burned. It was all very embarrassing." (17) It was not the last time that Angleton destroyed evidence to protect his reputation. CIA agent, Miles Copeland, was aware of these regular meetings. He later commented: "What Philby provided was feedback about the CIA's reactions. They (the KGB) could accurately determine whether or not reports fed to the CIA were believed or not... what it comes to, is that when you look at the whole period from 1944 to 1951, the entire Western intelligence effort, which was pretty big, was what you might call minus advantage. We'd have been better off doing nothing." (18) Ted Shackley, a senior figure in the CIA, believed that the Philby case had contributed to his paranoia and had been a major contribution to his hostile reaction to Yuri Nosenko. (19) Evan Thomas, the author of The Very Best Men (1995), attempts to explain Angleton's state of mind. "Angleton never got over suspecting that the Russians or Cubans plotted to kill Kennedy. He thought that the Russians or Cubans plotted to kill Kennedy. He thought the Russian defector, Yuri Nosenko, who claimed that the Kremlin was innocent, was a KGB plant to throw the CIA off the trail. But most reputable students of the Kennedy assassination have concluded that Khrushchev and Castro did not kill Kennedy, if only because neither man wanted to start World War III." (20) J. Edgar Hoover held very different views to those of Helms and Angleton concerning Nosenko. "Nosenko's assurances that Yekaterina Furtseva herself had stopped the KGB from recruiting Oswald gave Hoover the evidence he needed to clear the Soviets of complicity in the Kennedy murder - and, even more from Hoover's point of view, clear the FBI of gross negligence. Hoover took this raw, unverified, and untested intelligence and leaked it to members of the Warren Commission and to President Johnson." (21) Members of the Warren Commission were pleased to hear this information as it helped to confirm the idea that Oswald had acted alone and was not part of a Soviet conspiracy to kill John F. Kennedy. Once again we have to consider Hoover's state of mind in 1964 to show why he was so keen to accept Nosenko's story. To do this we have to go back to events that took place thirty years previously. In the early 1930s NKVD agents based in the United States began recruiting American citizens as spies. Hoover was not unaware of this. As early as 1933 the FBI identified Gaik Ovakimyan, an engineer at Amtorg (American-Soviet Trading Corporation) in New York City, as being in control of NKVD activities in the United States. Although occasionally Ovakimyan was followed, the FBI only had 50 agents dealing with Soviet espionage and for most of the time his activities went unrecorded. (22) On 5th November 1938, Walter Krivitsky, a senior NKVD agent, defected to America. David Shub, a supporter of Leon Trotsky, put him in touch with journalist, Isaac Don Levine, who had good contacts with the American media. Levine told Krivitsky that he could get him a lucrative deal for a series of articles. The first of these articles appeared in the Saturday Evening Post in April 1939. Hoover was very angry when he read the article. He was extremely annoyed that the American public had discovered in the article that Joseph Stalin was "sending NKVD agents into the United States as if the the FBI did not exist". (23) Krivitsky was eventually interviewed by the FBI on 27th July 1939. Krivitsky claimed that there were about 15 Soviet agents in New York City. He named Boris Bykov as one of the main agents in the country. The FBI was not convinced by Krivitsky's testimony: "Krivitsky accepts his own conclusions as facts and so relates them and that in reply to a question he would state his opinion as a fact, rather than admit a lack of definite knowledge." (24) The FBI was also concerned that Krivitsky's lawyer, Louis Waldman, was a well-known socialist. (25) The view was that Krivitsky was a disinformation agent. Walter Krivitsky was reluctant to give the names of spies who he considered to be "ideological". Krivitsky was opposed to what Joseph Stalin was doing in the Soviet Union, he was still a Marxist and so he was unwilling to betray those who shared his beliefs. However, he was willing to name spies who were taking money for providing information. For example, he gave the names of Soviet spies, John Herbert King and Ernest Holloway Oldham, who were based in London. Krivitsky was also invited to appear before Martin Dies and the House Committee on Un-American Activities (HUAC) on 11th October, 1939. In the closed session Krivitsky explained that the American Communist Party was under the control of the Soviet Union. According to Joseph Brown Matthews, who was an investigator for the HUAC: "Krivitsky told me that the OGPU was determined to assassinate Trotsky and himself." Krivitsky added: "If I am ever found dead and it appears to be suicide, please don't accept that belief. It will just appear to be a suicide. But it really will be murder. Trotsky is to be murdered and I am too. Please go to Mexico City and warn Trotsky." Matthews later recalled: "I went to Mexico City soon after this conversation, and saw Trotsky... I told Trotsky what the General had said." Trotsky apparently replied: "General Krivitsky is right. We are the two men the OGPU is sworn to kill." (26) In 1940 the FBI decided to take a closer interest in Gaik Ovakimyan. On one occasion he was seen meeting with Jacob Golos, who ran a travel agency, World Tourists in New York City. The FBI was aware that it was a front for Soviet clandestine work and his office was raided by officials of the Justice Department. (27) Some of these documents showed that Earl Browder, the leader of the Communist Party of the United States, had travelled on a false passport. Browder was arrested and Golos told his girlfriend, and fellow agent, Elizabeth Bentley: "Earl is my friend. It is my carelessness that is going to send him to jail." Bentley later recalled that the incident took its toll on Golos: "His red hair was becoming grayer and sparser, his blue eyes seemed to have no more fire in them, his face became habitually white and taut." (28) According to Bentley, United States officials agreed to drop the whole investigation, if Golos pleaded guilty. He told her that Moscow insisted that he went along with the deal. "I never thought that I would live to see the day when I would have to plead guilty in a bourgeois court." He complained that they had forced him to become a "sacrificial goat". On 15th March, 1940, Golos received a $500 fine and placed on four months probation. (29) Once again it was a botched operation. Golas was the most important Soviet spy in the United States. We now know that he ran agents that included Victor Perlo, Harry Dexter White, Nathan Silvermaster, Abraham George Silverman, Nathan Witt, Marion Bachrach, Julian Wadleigh, William Remington, Harold Glasser, Charles Kramer, Elizabeth Bentley, Duncan Chaplin Lee, Joseph Katz, William Ludwig Ullmann, Henry Hill Collins, Frank Coe, Abraham Brothman, Mary Price, Cedric Belfrage and Lauchlin Currie. The FBI was also not doing a very good job protecting Walter Krivitsky. He was found dead on 9th February, 1941, in Bellevue Hotel in Washington. The police declared that he had committed suicide. Frank Waldrop of The Washington Times-Herald ridiculed the police investigation: "Anybody'd rather be a second-guessing citizen than Chief of Police Ernest W. Brown, with such a staff of lunkheads to do the field work in homicide matters." (30) However The Daily Worker disagreed: "The capitalist press is desperately trying to make a frame-up murder case out of what is clearly established in the suicide of General Walter Krivitsky." (31) Louis Waldman campaigned for the FBI to treat the case as murder. "The issue is much deeper than the discovery of whether the general's death was the result of murder or suicide... When one considers that General Krivitsky was a witness, giving valuable information as to foreign espionage in our own country to a legislative committee, to the State Department, and to the FBI itself, then in my opinion, there is the clear duty of the FBI to track down those malevolent forces which were responsible for his death." (32) Waldman told the FBI that he had evidence that Hans Brusse was the killer. When the FBI reopen the case he went to the press with his evidence. Recently released documents show that in March 1941 a certain Lee Y. Chertok, a Russian living in the United States, claimed to have information on the killers of Krivitsky. J. Edgar Hoover sent a memo telling the FBI not to follow up this evidence: "The Bureau is not interested in determining whether Krivitsky was murdered or whether he committed suicide." (33) Whittaker Chambers, a Soviet spy, who like Walter Krivitsky, was disillusioned by the policies of Joseph Stalin, definitely believed that he had been killed by the NKVD: "He had left a letter in which he gave his wife and children the unlikely advice that the Soviet Government and people were their best friends. Previously he had warned them that, if he were found dead, never under any circumstances to believe that he had committed suicide." Krivitsky once told Chambers: "Any fool can commit a murder, but it takes an artist to commit a good natural death." (34) Chambers had for some time been trying to inform the authorities about the Soviet spy ring operating in the United States. In August 1939, Isaac Don Levine arranged for Chambers to meet Adolf Berle, one of the top aides to President Franklin D. Roosevelt. After dinner Chambers told Berle about government officials spying for the Soviet Union: "Around midnight, we went into the house. What we said there is not in question because Berle took it in the form of penciled notes. Just inside the front door, he sat at a little desk or table with a telephone on it and while I talked he wrote, abbreviating swiftly as he went along. These notes did not cover the entire conversation on the lawn. They were what we recapitulated quickly at a late hour after a good many drinks. I assumed that they were an exploratory skeleton on which further conversations and investigation would be based." (35) According to Levine the list of "espionage agents" included Alger Hiss, Donald Hiss, Laurence Duggan, Lauchlin Currie, Harry Dexter White, John Abt, Marion Bachrach, Nathan Witt, Lee Pressman, Julian Wadleigh, Noel Field and Frank Coe. Chambers also named Joszef Peter, as being "responsible for the Washington sector" and "after 1929 the "head of the underground section" of the Communist Party of the United States. Chambers later claimed that Berle reacted to the news with the comment: "We may be in this war within forty-eight hours and we cannot go into it without clean services." Berle, who was in effect the president's Director of Homeland Security, later claimed that he raised the issue with President Franklin D. Roosevelt, "who profanely dismissed it as nonsense." J. Edgar Hoover claims that it was not until 1943 that the FBI received a copy of Berle's memorandum. Whittaker Chambers was now interviewed by the FBI but Hoover concluded, after being briefed on the interview, that Chambers had little specific information. However, this information was sent to the State Department security officials. One of them, Raymond Murphy, interviewed Chambers in March 1945 about these claims. Chambers now gave full details of Hiss's spying activities. A report was sent to the FBI and in May, 1945, they had another meeting with Chambers. In August 1945, Elizabeth Bentley walked into an FBI office and announced that she was a former Soviet agent. In a statement she gave the names of several Soviet agents working for the government. This included Harry Dexter White and Lauchlin Currie. Bentley also said that a man named "Hiss" in the State Department was working for Soviet military intelligence. In the margins of Bentley's comments about Hiss, someone at the FBI made a handwritten notation: "Alger Hiss". In 1947 Hede Massing told Robert Lamphere (FBI Soviet Section), that she was a member of a spy network that included Vassili Zarubin, Boris Bazarov, Elizabeth Zarubina, Laurence Duggan, Alger Hiss, Joszef Peter, Earl Browder and Noel Field. Massing repeated the allegations of a Soviet network in the United States at the trial of her husband, Gerhart Eisler in July 1947. During this evidence Eisler's lawyer, Carol Weiss King, pointed at Robert Lamphere and shouted, "This is all a frame-up by you." (36) On 3rd August, 1948, Whittaker Chambers appeared before the House of Un-American Activities Committee. He testified that he had been "a member of the Communist Party and a paid functionary of that party" but left after the signing of the Nazi-Soviet Pact in August 1939. He explained how the Ware Group's "original purpose" was "not primarily espionage," but "the Communist infiltration of the American government." Chambers claimed his network of spies included Alger Hiss, Harry Dexter White, Lauchlin Currie, Abraham George Silverman, John Abt, Lee Pressman, Nathan Witt, Henry H. Collins and Donald Hiss. Silverman, Collins, Abt, Pressman and Witt all used the Fifth Amendment defence and refused to answer any questions put by the HUAC. (37) The FBI still took no action against the people. The main reason was that Hoover was unwilling to expose the fact that the FBI had completely failed in preventing Soviet espionage in the United States. Robert Lamphere worked closely with Hoover on these cases: "Director Hoover had his faults and idiosyncrasies - but he was indeed a great man." Lamphere believed that Hoover's main weakness was that he could not take criticism. "Hoover... believed that the organization he had built, the FBI, should repulse all attacks on it, whatever the source." This was especially true "in the area that he made mistakes". Hoover would do anything to stop the exposure of these mistakes. This included the destruction of documents. (38) 1948 was the year that Meredith Gardner and his team at Arlington Hall began successfully decode a backlog of over 200,000 communications between Moscow and its foreign missions. The project, named Venona (a word which appropriately, has no meaning), began identifying over 200 American citizens who had been spying for the Soviet Union since the early 1930s. (39) The people exposed by Venona included Cedric Belfrage, Elizabeth Bentley, Marion Bachrach, Joel Barr, Abraham Brothman, Earl Browder, Karl Hermann Brunck, Louis Budenz, Whittaker Chambers, Frank Coe, Henry Hill Collins, Judith Coplon, Lauchlin Currie, Hope Hale Davis, Samuel Dickstein, Martha Dodd, Laurence Duggan, Harry Gold, David Greenglass, Ruth Greenglass, Gerhart Eisler, Noel Field, Harold Glasser, Vivian Glassman, Jacob Golos, Theodore Hall, Alger Hiss, Donald Hiss, Joseph Katz, Charles Kramer, Duncan Chaplin Lee, Harvey Matusow, Hede Massing, Paul Massing, Boris Morros, William Perl, Victor Perlo, Joszef Peter, Lee Pressman, Mary Price, William Remington, Julius Rosenberg, Alfred Sarant, Abraham George Silverman, Helen Silvermaster, Nathan Silvermaster, Alfred Dean Slack, Morton Sobell, Alfred Stern, William Ludwig Ullmann, Julian Wadleigh, Harold Ware, William Weisband, Nathaniel Weyl, Donald Niven Wheeler, Harry Dexter White, Nathan Witt and Mark Zborowski. It was argued that you could not use Venona material in court as it would let the Soviets know that their secret code had been broken. However, one of the senior figures at Arlington Hall, William Weisband was also a Soviet spy. In February 1948 a Soviet official wrote an internal memorandum about the work of Weisband. "For one year, a large amount of very valuable documentary material concerning the work of Americans on deciphering Soviet ciphers, intercepting and analyzing open radio-correspondence of Soviet institutions (the Venona project), was received from (Weisband). From these materials, we came to know that, as a result of this work, American intelligence managed to acquire important data concerning the stationing of the USSR's armed forces, the productive capacity of various branches of industry, and work in the field of atomic energy in the USSR... On the basis of Weisband's materials, our state security organs carried out a number of defensive measures, resulting in the reduced efficiency of the American deciphering service. This has led to the considerable current reduction in the amount of deciphering and analysis by the Americans." (40) To make sure that the FBI was unaware that they knew that the code had been broken, they continued to use it. The "operatives" were instructed "every week to compose summary reports or information on the basis of press and personal connections to be transferred to the Center by telegraph." As Allen Weinstein, the author of The Hunted Wood: Soviet Espionage in America (1999) has pointed out the "Soviet intelligence's once-flourishing American networks, in short, had been transformed almost overnight into a virtual clipping service." (41) Those identified in the Venona transcripts were interviewed by the FBI but unless they broke down and confessed, charges could not be made against them. Harry Gold, David Greenglass and Ruth Greenglass did confess and this led to the conviction of Julius Rosenberg, Ethel Rosenberg (innocent) and Morton Sobell. Abraham Brothman and Miriam Moskowitz (innocent) were charged and convicted of “conspiracy to obstruct justice.” Others such as Alger Hiss and William Remington, were found guilty of perjury. Remington paid a heavy price for this as he was murdered in prison for being a "communist". William Weisband, the man who gave away the Venona secret, was convicted of contempt and sentenced to a year in prison after failing to appear before the grand jury. Judith Coplon was one of the most important Soviet spies in the United States. She worked for the FBI in the Justice Department and was able to warn any agents under investigation. Coplon's main attention was focused on the main Justice Department counter-intelligence archive that collected information from the various government agencies - FBI, OSS, and naval and army intelligence. She passed to her NKVD contact a number of documents from this archive. This included FBI materials on Soviet organizations in the United States and information on leaders of the Communist Party of the United States (CPUSA). A review of the data shocked NKVD. "The materials show how thoroughly the smallest facts from conversations, correspondence, and telephone talks held by our organizations, individual representatives, and workers in the country are recorded." (42) Coplon was arrested on 4th March, 1949 in Manhattan as she met with Valentin Gubitchev, her Soviet contact. They discovered that she had in her handbag twenty-eight FBI memoranda. This included details of the intensive monitoring of individuals such as David K. Niles, Frederic March, Edward G. Robinson and Edward Condon, who were all supporting Henry Wallace in his 1948 Presidential Campaign. Judith Coplon was charged with espionage. At her trial that began on 25th April 1949 Coplon claimed "she was meeting Gubitchev because they were in love and was not planning to give him the documents. But he was married, and prosecutors brought out that she had spent nights in hotels with another man at about the same time." (43) Coplon was helped in her defence by the decision of Judge Albert Reeves to rule that in order to convict her on the charge of unauthorized possession of classified documents, government prosecutors must produce in open court the originals of the FBI documents found in her handbag at the time of her arrest. During the trial, Coplon's lawyer, Archie Palmer, argued that the evidence from the confidential informant was in fact from illegal telephone taps. Then, over the strenuous objections of the FBI, he succeeded in getting raw FBI data collected on many famous people admitted as evidence, although they had nothing to do with the case. At the end of her trial Coplon was found guilty of espionage. The following year Coplon and Valentin Gubitchev were charged with conspiracy. As Hayden B. Peake has pointed out: "The alleged telephone taps became a major element in the second trial in New York, when Coplon and her case officer, Gubitchev, were convicted together. During the first trial, FBI special agents had denied direct knowledge of the taps. At the second, however, one of them admitted that taps had been used to collect evidence presented at trial. Later, the authors found a memorandum acknowledging the recordings and indicating that they had been intentionally destroyed to avoid having to reveal their existence." (44) Both Coplon were found guilty and Gubitchev was deported. However, Coplon appealed against both convictions. "The appellant judge in New York concluded that it was clear from the evidence that she was guilty, but the FBI had lied under oath about the bugging. Moreover, he wrote, the failure to get a warrant was not justified. He overturned the verdict, but the indictment was not dismissed. In the appeal of the Washington trial, the verdict was upheld, but, because of the possible bugging, a new trial became possible." (45) The case caused considerable embarrassment to the FBI. As Athan Theoharis, the author of Chasing Spies (2002) has pointed out : "Their public release confirmed that FBI agents intensively monitored political activities and wire-tapped extensively - with the subjects of their interest ranging from New Deal liberals to critics of the House Committee on Un-American Activities, and with information in fifteen of the twenty-eight reports coming from wiretaps. And because Coplon's own phone had been wiretapped, her conviction was later reversed on appeal. The appeals judge concluded that FBI wiretapping had possibly tainted Coplon's indictment, under the Supreme Court's 1937 and 1939 rulings in Narclone v. U.S., requiring the dismissal of any case based on illegal wiretaps." (46) Once again, the FBI had failed to get a conviction of a Soviet spy. In 1963 Hoover was petrified that it would be discovered that Lee Harvey Oswald was part of a Soviet conspiracy that assassinated John F. Kennedy. No wonder he was overjoyed to hear about the defection of Yuri Nosenko and the story he had to tell. The Warren Commission welcomed the news and enabled them to provide a report wanted by President Lyndon Baines Johnson. As he told Richard B. Russell when he asked him to serve on the commission on 29th November, 1963: "It has already been announced and you can serve with anybody for the good of America and this is a question that has a good many more ramifications than on the surface and we've got to take this out of the arena where they're testifying that Khrushchev and Castro did this and did that and chuck us into a war that can kill 40 million Americans in an hour." (47) So who was right about Yuri Nosenko - J. Edgar Hoover or James Jesus Angleton? The Mitrokhin Archive shows us that Nosenko was indeed a genuine defector. So also was Anatoli Golitsyn (at least Angleton got that one right). The KGB gave orders for both men to be assassinated. As late as 1975 they had found a gangster willing to take out a contract on Nosenko for $100,000. But before he could do so the gangster was arrested for other crimes. (48) References (1) Gerald D. McKnight, Breach of Trust: How the Warren Commission Failed the Nation and Why (2005) pages 388-389 (2) Richard Helms, A Look Over My Shoulder (2003) pages 238-39 (3) Christopher Andrew, The Defence of the Realm: The Authorized History of MI5 (2009) page 435 (4) David Martin, Wilderness of Mirrors (1980) page 153 (5) Richard Helms, A Look Over My Shoulder (2003) pages 240 (6) Thomas Powers, The Man Who Kept the Secrets: Richard Helms and the CIA (1979) page 328 (7) John Ranelagh, The Agency: The Rise and Decline of the CIA (1987) page 320 (8) Joseph Trento, The Secret History of the CIA (2001) page 37 (9) Anthony Cave Brown, Treason of Blood (1995) page 386 (10) Kim Philby, My Secret War (1968) page 145 (11) Kim Philby, letter to Leonard Mosley (April, 1977) (12) Ben Macintyre, A Spy Among Friends (2014) page 131 (13) Kim Philby, My Secret War (1968) page 151 (14) Ben Macintyre, A Spy Among Friends (2014) page 156 (15) Tom Mangold, Cold Warrior: James Jesus Angleton: The CIA's Master Spy Hunter (1991) page 45 (16) Burton Hersh, The Old Boys: The American Elite and the Origins of the CIA (1992) page 321 (17) Tom Mangold, Cold Warrior: James Jesus Angleton: The CIA's Master Spy Hunter (1991) page 46 (18) Michael Howard Holzman, James Jesus Angleton, the CIA, and the Craft of Counterintelligence (2008) page 125 (19) Ted Shackley, Spymaster: My Life in the CIA (2005) page 93 (20) Evan Thomas, The Very Best Men: The Early Years of the CIA (1995) page 308 (21) Joseph Trento, The Secret History of the CIA (2001) page 284 (22) Robert J. Lamphere, The FBI-KGB War (1986) page 25 (23) Walter Krivitsky, Saturday Evening Post (April 1939) (24) Gary Kern, A Death in Washington: Walter G. Krivitsky and the Stalin Terror (2004) page 213 (25) Louis Waldman, Labor Lawyer (1944) pages 344-346 (26) The Chicago American (2nd November, 1941) (27) Silvermaster FBI File 65-56402-1976 (28) Harvey Klehr and John Earl Haynes, The Secret World of American Communism (1995) page 11 (29) The Washington Post (15th March, 1940) (30) Frank Waldrop, The Washington Times-Herald (1st Aptil, 1941) (31) The Daily Worker (2nd November, 1941) (32) Gary Kern, A Death in Washington: Walter G. Krivitsky and the Stalin Terror (2004) page 289 (33) J. Edgar Hoover, memorandum to B. E. Sackett (15th March, 1941) (34) Whittaker Chambers, Witness (1952) page 485 (35) Whittaker Chambers, Witness (1952) page 464 (36) Robert J. Lamphere, The FBI-KGB War (1986) pages 59-60 (37) Sam Tanenhaus, Whittaker Chambers: A Biography (1997) page 246 (38) Robert J. Lamphere, The FBI-KGB War (1986) page 69 (39) David Stout, The New York Times (18th August, 2002) (40) Yuri Bruslov, memorandum on William Weisband (February, 1948) (41) Allen Weinstein, The Hunted Wood: Soviet Espionage in America (1999) page 286 (42) Venona File 35112 page 131 (43) Jim Fitzgerald, The Washington Post (4th March, 2011) (44) Hayden B. Peake, The Spy Who Seduced America: Lies and Betrayal in the Heat of the Cold War— The Judith Coplon Story (14th April, 2007) (45) Hayden B. Peake, The Spy Who Seduced America: Lies and Betrayal in the Heat of the Cold War— The Judith Coplon Story (14th April, 2007) (46) Athan Theoharis, Chasing Spies (2002) page 87 (47) President Lyndon Baines Johnson, telephone conversation to Richard B. Russell (29th November, 1963) (48) Mitrokhin Archive (Volume 2, Appendix 3)
  10. Article in today's Guardian: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/feb/18/usa A transcript claiming to detail Lee Harvey Oswald's plot to assassinate President John F Kennedy has been discovered in an old courtroom safe. The record – described as reading like a conspiracy theorist's dream - appears to minute talks between Oswald and Jack Ruby, who killed Oswald after Kennedy's assassination. Today, the Dallas County district attorney's office said other documents found included letters from former district attorney Henry Wade, the prosecuting lawyer in Ruby's trial. But the apparent record of the conversation between Oswald and Ruby was probably fake, said the district attorney, Craig Watkins, and was instead likely to be long-forgotten material for a proposed film. Oswald says in the transcript: "I can still do it, all I need is my rifle and a tall building; but it will take time, maybe six months to find the right place; but I'll have to have some money to live on while I do the planning." The Dallas Morning News reported the transcript and other material were found in a safe on the 10th floor of the county courthouse. The memorabilia – the rest of which was believed to be genuine – also included letters from Wade to Ruby, a gun holster and clothing that probably belonged to Ruby and Oswald, Watkins said. The transcript suggests Ruby and Oswald met at Ruby's nightclub on October 4 1963, less than two months before the assassination on November 22 that year. In it, they talked of killing the president because the mafia wanted to "get rid" of his brother, the then attorney general, Robert Kennedy. Today, Gary Mack, the curator of the Sixth Floor Museum, which chronicles Kennedy's life, said he doubted the transcript was genuine. He added it was well documented Oswald was in Irving, Texas, on the evening of October 4, and therefore could not have been in Ruby's nightclub. "The fact that it's sitting in Henry Wade's file, and he didn't do anything, indicates he thought it wasn't worth anything," Mack said. "He probably kept it because it was funny. It's hilarious. It's like a bad B movie." Terri Moore, an assistant to Watkins, today said she believed the transcript was part of a movie Wade was working on with producers. The former prosecutor had discussed making the film, Countdown in Dallas, in letters found in the safe. "It's not real. Crooks don't talk like that," Moore said. Watkins said the items were still being processed and would eventually be made available to the public.
  11. I thought that it might be a good idea to look at the evidence that suggests that the assassination of JFK was organized by the governments of the Soviet Union or/and Cuba. I think the idea makes no political sense at all but I know some members of the forum do believe this theory. The history of this theory is an interesting one. The first person to put this theory forward was John Martino, an electronics expert, who was employed by Santos Trafficante. He also worked as a CIA agent and took part in its Black Operations. In an article published in January, 1964, Martino argued that in 1963 Castro discovered an American plot to overthrow his government. He retaliated by employing Oswald to kill JFK. Shortly before his death in 1975 Martino confessed to a Miami Newsday reporter, John Cummings, that he had been guilty of spreading false stories implicating Oswald and the Soviets in the assassination. In fact, he had himself been part of the conspiracy to kill JFK. He claimed that two of the gunmen were Cuban exiles. It is believed the two men were Herminio Diaz Garcia and Virgilio Gonzalez. Cummings added: "He told me he'd been part of the assassination of Kennedy. He wasn't in Dallas pulling a trigger, but he was involved. He implied that his role was delivering money, facilitating things.... He asked me not to write it while he was alive." Martino made a similar confession to his wife, son and business partner. The next person to spread this story was Billy James Hargis, the founder of Christian Crusade ("a Christian weapon against Communism and its godless allies"). In 1964 he wrote a book called The Far Left. In it he argued: What are the lies that are confronting the American people today as a result of this internal Communist conspiracy, and in connection with this murder of the President of the United States? The first lie is that there is no conspiracy, that the Communist conspiracy does not exist, and there are not thousands upon thousands of trained Communist agents in this country today, some of them trained, as Lee Harvey Oswald obviously was, to be expert killers. The murder of the President of the United States was one of the most skillful acts of killing imaginable and could have been accomplished only by great training, and now the facts show that Oswald received such training inside the Soviet Union, while he lived there as a citizen. It is a lie hatched in hell that the so-called “right-wing extremists” are guilty of the murder of the President of the United States. That lie was put out as official Communist Party propaganda in the first flash of Tass News Agency in Moscow as reported in this country within minutes after the President was killed. Tass, the Russian Communist News Agency, said it was believed that “right-wing extremists” were responsible for the murder of the President, and specifically branded General Edwin A. Walker as being one of those guilty. Hargis was known as a right-wing fanatic and his views on the assassination were not taken seriously (except for Kenneth Rahn’s Academic (sic) JFK Assassination Site). Despite the efforts of James Jesus Angleton very few researchers were unwilling to put forward the theory that the Soviets were behind the assassination. Understandably, most researchers were more likely to think that it was the CIA or FBI that planned the assassination than the KGB. The next book that argued that the KGB was behind the assassination came in 1975. The book, Khrushchev Killed Kennedy had been written by the English author, Michael Eddowes. The fact that Eddowes had written such a book surprised researchers in the UK. Eddowes, a former lawyer, had gained fame in 1955 by publishing a book called The Man on Your Conscience. The book was an investigation into the murder trial and execution of Timothy Evans. The book caused renewed interest in the case and eventually Evans received a posthumous pardon by the Queen. This case played an important role in the subsequent abolition of capital punishment in Britain. Eddowes was therefore had a good reputation as an investigative reporter. However, he appeared to lose interest in this profession after the publication of The Man on Your Conscience. In fact, by 1975, he was mainly known for his right-wing extremist political views. In Khrushchev Killed Kennedy Eddowes argued that Kennedy was killed by a Soviet agent impersonating Oswald. Eddowes also claimed that LBJ was aware of this and had covered-up the role of the KGB in the killing of Kennedy in order to prevent a nuclear war with the Soviet Union. With the release of the LBJ tapes we now know this is what he was saying at the time. Had Eddowes been tipped off by the FBI/CIA about this? Two events helped to undermine Eddowes and as a result his book is rarely quoted by the “Soviets did it” theorists. To test his theory, Eddowes brought a suit in Texas to exhume Oswald's body. This was originally refused but after gaining the support of Lee Harvey Oswald's family, the exhumation took place on 4th October, 1981. The body was taken to the Baylor Medical Center. Identification was made primarily using dental records. At a news conference held later the following statement was issued: “The findings of the team are as follows: We independently and as a team have concluded beyond any doubt, and I mean beyond any doubt, that the individual buried under the name of Lee Harvey Oswald in Rose Hill Cemetery is in fact Lee Harvey Oswald.” The other event was the discovery that the writing and publication of Khrushchev Killed Kennedy had been financed by the Texas oil billionaire, Haroldson L. Hunt. This was of course the man claimed by Thomas Buchanan (Who Killed Kennedy? 1964) to have paid for the JFK assassination. The next person to argue that it was the KGB was Edward Jay Epstein. In 1978 he published Legend: The Secret World of Lee Harvey Oswald. In the book he claims that Oswald killed JFK and that it was working on behalf of the KGB. Much of the book is based on interviews with James Jesus Angleton and Yuri Nosenko. This book did little for Epstein’s reputation as a serious researcher and many now believe he was in the pay of the CIA. In 1982 Michael Kurtz published The Kennedy Assassination From a Historian's Perspective. It is a good book and mainly concentrates on looking at the evidence for a conspiracy. In the book he speculates about different groups being involved in the assassination. This includes the possibility that the assassination was ordered by Fidel Castro. In recent years few researchers have claimed that the Soviets were behind the assassination. The release of secret files under the Freedom of Information Act has also undermined this theory. It is now clear that JFK was involved in secret negotiations with Castro and Khrushchev about bringing the Cold War to an end. The idea that they should be at the same time being plotting to have JFK assassinated so that they could have LBJ as president is indeed ridiculous.
  12. Jean-Pierre Lafitte

    Part of Anthony Frewin's review of A Terrible Mistake: The Murder of Frank Olson and the CIA’s Secret Cold War Experiments: http://www.lobster-magazine.co.uk/free/lob...9/lobster59.pdf On Thursday 19 November 1953 Olson attended a meeting at Deep Creek Lake with several of his colleagues and was slipped LSD laced with a ‘truth drug’ before being interrogated. He began to display strange behaviour, extreme anxiety, and feelings of paranoia. The loose cannon was now ricocheting about like the ball in a pinball machine. He was taken up to New York to see the CIA-approved Dr Abramson who seems to have realised that there was going to be no easy fix here. Then it was decided that Olson should be taken away to a secure CIA-approved asylum and the forcible removal of Olson from the Hotel Statler was entrusted to two ‘goons’. Things got out of hand in the hotel room and Olson was precipitated out the window with the goons probably thinking, they’ll thank us for this (indeed, they might even have been instructed to do same). The two goons were Pierre Lafitte and Francoise Spirito. Who they? Spirio and Lafitte Spirito has been dubbed the father of modern heroin traffickers. He was born in Sicily in 1898 and spent his formative years in Marseilles. The 1970 French film Borsalino was largely based on his life but left out much of his less pleasing side, such as his Nazi collaboration during the war. Just before the Olson business Spirito had been released from Atlanta’s Federal Penitentiary where he had been serving a sentence for drug trafficking. Less than three weeks later he was picked up by the US Immigration and Naturalization Service and deported back to France where he died in 1967. Spirito had known Lafitte since about 1939 and they had first met in Marseilles. It was Lafitte who engaged him for the job. Now let’s turn to Lafitte. In 1952 nine large framed paintings including The Flaying of St. Bartholomew, believed to be by Mattis Preti, a famous Neapolitan artist, were stolen from St Joseph’s Cathedral in Bardstown, Kentucky. In April 1953 FBI agents arrested three people in Chicago in connection with the theft: Norton I Kretske, an attorney, Joseph DePietro, a deputy bailiff for a Chicago court, and an individual identified as Gus Manoletti. The case went to trial in October and the government’s second prosecution witness answered to the name of Jean-Pierre Lafitte but as he approached the stand he was recognised as Gus Manoletti. Lafitte said he lived in San Diego and had been employed for the last three years as a special investigator for the Federal Bureau of Narcotics. Before that he had been employed overseas on ‘special missions for the United States government.’ He explained that he had been engaged by the FBI to locate the stolen paintings and had posed as a buyer in the art world and after months of undercover work had purchased the stolen paintings from Kretske and DePietro for $35,000. They were then arrested in a sting operation. Since Lafitte was the government’s star witness, the attorneys for the defendants made strenuous efforts to find out more about his background. The prosecutors objected and the judge sustained their objections citing public interest issues and forbidding any disclosure. So, here we have a man trusted by government agencies and seemingly employed by them over many years. It’s unclear when and where Lafitte was born; possibly Corsica in the early 1900s. He certainly grew up in Marseilles and in his early teens, either having run away from home or having been abandoned by his mother, was working in restaurant kitchens where he discovered a natural aptitude for cooking, a talent that would stand him in good stead throughout his peripatetic life. His involvement in the Marseilles underworld parallels his restaurant work. The late 1930s found Lafitte travelling back and forth between New York, Montreal, Boston, Paris and Marseilles, probably facilitating drug deals. During the 1939-45 war he is thought to have been involved in a number of OSS operations in Nazi-occupied Europe. Sometime after the war he hooked up with George Hunter White, a buccaneering agent of the Federal Narcotics Bureau, who would provide plenty of work for him. (White had free access to LSD in the early 1950s and was dosing unwitting subjects left, right and centre in the many safe houses he ran for the FNB and other agencies). In 1951 White enlisted Lafitte’s help in a major narcotics case. A Joe Dornay, an alias of Joseph Orsini, was arrested in New York for drug trafficking. When he was placed in a cell on Ellis Island prior to deportation who was his cellmate? None other than Lafitte, put there by the FBN to gather information about Orsini’s network. Orsini spilled the beans thinking that Lafitte could mind the store while he was away. As it was, Orsini effectively handed the network on a plate to the FBN and the FBI via Lafitte. Lafitte’s career as a ‘non-attributable’ agent for various government agencies is described in great detail by Albarelli and includes the remarkable story of Joe Valachi, the Mafia song-bird, who had murdered John Joseph Saupp in the Atlanta Federal Penitentiary yard. The US Attorney there had sought the death penalty but Valachi, through a go-between, got a message concerning his predicament through to Robert Morgenthau who was then the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York. The message was that he was prepared to tell all about the mob, as he subsequently did, in exchange for the death penalty going away.4 Albarelli reveals Lafitte was that go-between. In 1953 Lafitte had been working undercover doing lowly work in several New York hotels, probably for the FBN, certainly for George White. He was working at the Hotel Statler when Olson exited the window. Shaw, Oswald, New Orleans Now we’ll go to a contemporary ‘parallel’ universe: Clay Shaw, Lee Harvey Oswald, and New Orleans. In 1967 the New Orleans District Attorney Jim Garrison arrested Clay Shaw for conspiracy in the assassination of John F Kennedy. Shaw was a prominent New Orleans businessman and a leading director of the World Trade Center, a ‘non-profit association fostering the development of international trade, tourism and cultural exchange.’ In 1969 Sidney Gottlieb announced at a staff meeting that the FBI had arrested Lafitte in New Orleans where he was working as the manager-chef of the Plimsoll Club within the World Trade Center5 (Shaw had praised him as ‘the best chef in New Orleans’ (Others who sang his praises included the Louisiana Governor John McKeithen and Mrs Lyndon Baines Johnson who sent him a letter from the White House. See ‘The Gourmet Pirate’, Time magazine, 19 December 1969.). Richard Helms, now director of the CIA, wanted to know what was going on and ordered an inquiry. It transpires that the Feds had little choice but to pick Lafitte up as six years earlier he had swindled a businessman out of $400,000 in an elaborate scam that involved diamond mines in South Africa. However, Lafitte’s ‘interfacing’ with the Kennedy assassination and its aftermath do not end there. Earlier, in 1967 or 1968, with Allan Hughes, a CIA operative who had attended the Deep Creek Lake meeting where Olson had been dosed, and the reporter James Phelan, Lafitte burgled Garrison’s office to retrieve papers relating to Shaw. And there’s an even more intriguing connection. On 9 May 1963 Lee Harvey Oswald applied for work at the William B Reily Coffee Company in New Orleans. The eponymous Reily was a rabid anti-communist who gave financial support both to Sergio Arcacha Smith’s Crusade to Free Cuba Committee and Ed Butler’s partially CIA-funded propaganda outfit, the Information Council of the Americas (INCA). The Reily vice-president, William Monaghan, was a former FBI agent and was a charter member of INCA. Jim Garrison believed that Reily’s was part of an intelligence apparatus. A view bolstered somewhat by Gerry Patrick Hemming’s claim that William Reily had worked for the CIA for years. Oswald worked for Reily May through July, and Albarelli notes that ‘Around the time of JFK assassination’ Lafitte too was working for the Reily company. The world gets smaller and smaller. Lafitte is unknown in the literature of the JFK assassination. I checked the indices of some ten works. He’s obviously a person for whom further and better partics are needed.
  13. I have recently become interested in exploring the links between the deaths of John Heinz, John Tower and the assassination of JFK. Here is an interesting passage from an article written by Victor Thorn, George Bush & John Kerry: Blood Brothers, World Independent News Group (2004). According to researcher Rodney Stich in Defrauding America, when George Bush Sr. and CIA Director William Casey engineered the October Surprise to bribe Iranian officials into retaining U.S. hostages until after the 1980 elections, two of the passengers on Bush’s BAC 111 flight to Paris were Senator John Heinz, along with Senator John Tower from Texas. Even more intriguing is the fact that John Heinz chaired a three-man presidential review board that probed the Iran-Contra affair and had in his possession all the damning documents from that sordid affair, while John Tower led the infamous Tower Commission that investigated a variety of different CIA criminal activities and dirty dealings. Coincidentally, both John Heinz and John Tower died in plane wrecks on successive days in 1991 – Tower in Georgia, and Heinz in Montgomery County, Pa. Once again I must ask: what are the odds of such an occurrence, especially when both men had close ties to George Bush Sr., who was a former CIA director in the mid-1970s? Did both of these men uncover information that they refused to keep silent about any longer? Before you answer, consider that after Senator John Heinz died, his wife married Senator John Kerry, who was chairman of the 1988 Kerry Commission, described in the Senate Committee Report on Drugs, Law Enforcement and Foreign Policy as “focusing on allegations of illegal gun-running and narcotics trafficking associated with the Contra war against Nicaragua” in relation to the CIA, Department of Justice, the U.S. State Department, and the office of the President and Vice President. The testimony that took place during these trials (both in open and closed door sessions) was quite possibly the most damning ever against our federal government, yet mysteriously, nearly all of it was suppressed and not widely reported in the mainstream media. Why? Senator Kerry as a Democrat, had every opportunity to blast a Republican administration out of the water, yet he inexplicably remained silent and the status quo prevailed. Could it be that someone tapped him on the shoulder and told him that if he played his cards right and kept these sordid matters hush-hush, he would be rewarded sometime in the future?
  14. What Makes a Great Teacher

    Fascinating article by Francis Gilbert in today's Guardian: http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/2010/j...francis-gilbert David Cameron's proclamation that the Tories will be "brazenly elitist" about the calibre of candidates entering the teaching profession betrays the fact that he doesn't know anything about teaching. As a teacher in various comprehensives for the past 20 years, I have seen many good teachers, and some, it's true, fit the stereotype that Cameron wants to impose: graduates with good degrees from so-called "good universities". But I've also met a great many excellent teachers who wouldn't have passed his test. Some didn't have degrees in their chosen subjects; others didn't have degrees at all. Cameron's cardinal mistake is to think qualifications make a good teacher. They don't. When you're faced with 30 truculent children after lunch on a Friday afternoon, qualifications don't count for much. Take Lesley, a high-powered business executive who I mentored as she trained to be a teacher. She had everything: a great degree, excellent organisational skills and good communication skills. Yet she crumbled in the classroom because she was so impatient with her pupils: nothing they did was good enough. Whereas her employees had tolerated her endless nit-picking, her pupils ­became demotivated and disaffected. David was another illustration of the shortcomings of Cameron's policy: he had a first-class degree from Oxford and a penchant for oatmeal jackets and cravats. As his mentor, I observed him teach what I felt was a relatively well-behaved class of 12-year-olds. A quarter of an hour in, it was clear that none of the children had the slightest idea what he was talking about; the class began talking, then chucking his elaborate worksheets around the class. Ironically, it was his support teacher, who didn't have a degree at all, who rescued the lesson by explaining in clear English what was required. If you don't have the right personality, you'll suffer in the bearpit of today's classrooms. In my experience, there are four types of teacher who are effective: the despot, the carer, the charmer, and the rebel. And none of them, in my experience, requires an upper-class degree. I've come across many despotic teachers in my career. They are the Terminator or Lara Croft of teaching; the tough guy or gal who everyone turns to when the going gets really tough. They are nearly always very experienced teachers who know not only all the pupils but their parents, too, having taught many of them. During my first year of teaching, one of my classes rioted, pushed all the furniture out of my room, swore at me and blew cigarette smoke in my face. I called in the cigar-chomping despot of my school, the deputy head, and he blasted them away with a sound telling off. Most manuals don't advocate this approach to teaching, but I have to admit it can be very effective, even if morally dubious. Despotic teachers often extract fantastic work from their pupils, and rarely have to use their full armory – their reputations are usually enough. They are often highly organised, making their classrooms into small fortresses, and in my experience nearly always achieve above-average results, because they teach the syllabus to the last letter. The opposite of the despot is the caring teacher. Without wanting to stereotype too much, many carers are women. They become surrogate parents for their pupils. Many don't have degrees, and have been appointed as "mentors" or "support teachers" to help struggling pupils plan out their lives – working out ways in which they can do their work most effectively. Usually, pupils love seeing their mentors, and learn from them the vital skill of "taking responsibility for their own learning" (as it's known in the jargon). I've taught some pupils who were ­really going off the rails – taking drugs, skipping school, getting into fights – yet when they were taken under the wing of one of these teachers, they transformed and blossomed. Unlike the despot, the caring teacher works with lots of people: ­parents, other teachers, social workers. What she or he manages to do is make pupils see they can control and shape their own lives. The teacher might mother her charges to death in the process, but the end result is nearly always a happy pupil who has achieved very much against the odds. The "charmer", on the other hand, is quite different from both these previous staples of the teaching profession. They can be a disorganised species, living off adrenaline and wits. They are frequently highly academic, and are in teaching to be mates with their pupils, to understand them and play with them. With this sort of teacher, the classroom becomes one great big, bouncing playground of learning. Take Martin, one of the best teachers I've come across, who would prepare his lessons on the hoof after reading the newspaper, and would ­totally change direction mid-lesson if hit by some new inspiration. He was very disorganised, but did everything with a wink and a smile. Finally, there's the most controversial but often most effective kind of teacher: the rebel. These teachers see school as a place that should aim to transform society, and are equally loathed by Tories and New Labourites alike. They are also a dying breed. Using thinkers such as Karl Marx and the Brazilian educational philosopher Paulo Freire, they believe that our children have been brainwashed by our capitalistic society into making certain assumptions about inequality, exploitation, injustice. They see the classroom as the place where these children can be "deprogrammed" – and make amazing teachers because they are so passionate and persuasive. In the staffroom, they frequently rage against the system, pointing out that education isn't about producing good little workers to prop up our ­iniquitous society. Even if you disagree with their politics, you have to admit they deliver blinding lessons, whatever their subject. But the crucial point here is that none of these teachers learned their skills by getting a good degree: they learned them on the job. All could ­improve by watching other good ­teachers in the classroom and learning from their techniques. However, there are some "generic" traits which should be borne in mind when discussing what's best for our schools. Research shows that all the best teachers motivate their pupils to work hard, and assess them very regularly. Recently, I feel I've improved my teaching because I've learned more about assessing my pupils frequently; instead of concentrating upon my teaching, I've looked more closely at what my pupils are learning and ­tailored my lessons accordingly (I've had to be trained to do this). There is now a great deal of research to suggest it is not your subject knowledge that's the determining factor of how well your pupils achieve, but how you use your assessment of their achievements to plan and shape succeeding lessons. But I'm well aware that I still need further training in this area. At the moment, I am paying for that training myself in the form of a doctorate in education; there isn't any hope of receiving funding from the government (believe me, I've tried). Luckily, my partner works so we can afford it, but most teachers struggling with families and high living costs cannot. Instead of demoralising teachers with his ill-informed comments about what makes a good teacher, Cameron should commit himself to putting proper money and time into training the existing teachers in the system. Instead of paying for the training of a "brazen elite" of graduates, he should improve the wages of all teachers so that we are all treated like an "elite". His current policy, if implemented, won't improve the standards of teaching, and will instead further dishearten an already deflated profession.
  15. Fred Korth

    Fred Korth is one of the characters that needs to be investigated. There is very little on him on the web. Korth was president of the Continental National Bank of Fort Worth. He was appointed as Navy Secretary by President John F. Kennedy on 4th January, 1962. According to author Seth Kantor, Korth only got the job after strong lobbying from Lyndon B. Johnson. In 1963 John McClellan, chairman of the Permanent Investigations Committee, began looking into the activities of Billie Sol Estes and Bobby Baker. During this investigation evidence emerged that Johnson was also involved in political corruption. This included the award of a $7 billion contract for a fighter plane, the TFX, to General Dynamics, a company based in Texas. When it was discovered that the Continental National Bank of Fort Worth, was the principal money source for the General Dynamics plant. As a result of this revelation Korth resigned from office on 1st November, 1963. On 22nd November, 1963, a friend of Baker's, Don B. Reynolds told B. Everett Jordan and his Senate Rules Committee that he saw a suitcase full of money which Baker described as a "$100,000 payoff to Johnson for his role in securing the Fort Worth TFX contract". A study of LBJ's telephone tapes show that stopping this information reaching the public was his main concern during the months following the assassination. With a lot of bullying and threats he managed to do this. However, this was because he was president. Reynolds even said that he was not willing to testify against a president. Only the death of JFK made this possible. John McClellan, the chairman of the Senate subcommittee investigating the TFX contract said that he wanted to interview Don Reynolds. However, for some reason the subcommittee did not resume its investigation until 1969, after Johnson had left office. http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKkorth.htm
  16. Joseph Adams Milteer

    Joseph Adams Milteer told Miami police informant, Willie Somersett, that he would be at the scene of the assassination of JFK. Anyone believe they can spot him in Dealey Plaza?
  17. I suppose if we carried out a poll on who organized the assassination of JFK, the name of David Atlee Phillips would appear fairly high up on the list (probably in second place behind Davis Morales). I thought it might be worth looking at the evidence that Phillips was behind the assassination: Phillips joined the CIA in 1950. Over the next few years Phillips was involved in clandestine operations in Guatemala against President Jacobo Arbenz. The plot against Arbenz became part of Executive Action (a CIA plan to remove unfriendly foreign leaders from power). The plot to remove Arbenz from power was called “Operation Success”. It was well-named, it eventually became the most successful operation in CIA history. The removal of Arbenz enabled Frank Wisner to convince Dwight Eisenhower and Richard Nixon that covert operations worked. Operation Success became a blue print for how to remove foreign leaders from power. Those who took part in this operation were seen as the “experts” in this kind of work. Those involved included the following: David Atlee Phillips, David Sanchez Morales, Rip Robertson, Tracy Barnes, Richard Bissell and E. Howard Hunt. It is no coincidence that the same team were recruited to get rid of Fidel Castro after he gained power in 1959. I, like others, believe that it was this failed operation that helps explain the assassination of JFK. http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKarbenz.htm Phillips worked undercover in Havana (1959-60). He was seen as the “expert” on Castro. As a result, he was involved in organizing the Bay of Pigs operation. So also were the rest of the Operation Success team: Morales, Robertson, Barnes, Bissell and Hunt. Castro was no Arbenz. He was not removed, he was made stronger. Phillips and company could not believe that the reason for this was their own misreading of the situation in Cuba. As far as they were concerned, the Bay of Pigs failed because of one man: John F. Kennedy. http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/COLDbayofpigs.htm Barnes and Bissell, liberal supporters of the Democratic Party, were quick to forgive Kennedy. Phillips, Morales, Robertson and Hunt came from a different tradition. As far as they were concerned, JFK was a traitor and needed to be removed from power. However, at first, they did not do anything that would make this happen. They assumed that a right-wing Republican would be elected in 1964 and this would be followed by an armed invasion of Cuba. After the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis, the Phillips gang realized that JFK would not be defeated in 1964. http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/COLDcubanmissile.htm His image had been transformed. He was now seen as the tough Cold War leader who had made the Soviet Union back down. The reality of the situation was very different. This is why Operation Tilt was organized. http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKtilt.htm It hoped to provide Barry Goldwater with the necessary ammunition to destroy JFK in the presidential election. Once again the operation ended in failure. JFK looked certain to be elected. The situation became even worse for this right-wing faction when it was discovered in 1963 that JFK was carrying out secret negotiations with Castro. The future did not look good for the CIA’s anti-Castro group. JFK was likely to serve until 1968 and then he would be replaced by Robert Kennedy. In time, Edward Kennedy would take over from Robert. The Kennedy Dynasty could become a reality. What is more, John and Robert had moved to the left as a result of their experiences in government. They genuinely seemed to want to bring the Cold War to an end. This was indeed a frightening prospect for people like Phillips. It was also very worrying for the Military Industrial Congressional Complex (MICC). It was also a problem for the Congressional part of the MICC. In other words, Lyndon Johnson and his cronies. http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKgroup8F.htm In 1963 JFK had some serious enemies who could see not see how they could use conventional methods to get rid of him. If drastic action was needed, who better to approach than that group that had been responsible for getting rid of dangerous political leaders in the past. The highest-ranking member of this right-wing group within the CIA in 1963 was David Atlee Phillips. In 1963 Phillips was Chief of Cuban Operations. He worked closely with David Morales at JM WAVE in Miami. Phillips also provided support to Alpha 66. It was later claimed that Phillips told Antonio Veciana his goal was to provoke US intervention in Cuba by "putting Kennedy's back to the wall." Phillips therefore had the motivation and the opportunity to organize the assassination. However, is there any evidence that he was the man responsible? In 1976 Antonio Veciana was interviewed by Gaeton Fonzi of the House Select Committee on Assassinations. The founder of the anti-Castro organization, Alpha 66, he told the committee about his relationship with his CIA contact, Maurice Bishop. He claimed that in August, 1963, he saw Bishop and Lee Harvey Oswald together in Dallas. Veciana admitted that Bishop had organized and funded the Alpha 66 attacks on the Soviet ships docked in Cuba in 1963. Veciana explained the policy: "It was my case officer, Maurice Bishop, who had the idea to attack the Soviet ships. The intention was to cause trouble between Kennedy and Russia. Bishop believed that Kennedy and Khrushchev had made a secret agreement that the USA would do nothing more to help in the fight against Castro. Bishop felt - he told me many times - that President Kennedy was a man without experience surrounded by a group of young men who were also inexperienced with mistaken ideas on how to manage this country. He said you had to put Kennedy against the wall in order to force him to make decisions that would remove Castro's regime." Richard Schweiker, a member of the committee, speculated that Bishop was David Atlee Phillips. Schweiker asked his researcher, Gaeton Fonzi, to investigate this issue. Fonzi arranged for Veciana and Phillips to be introduced at a meeting of the Association of Retired Intelligence Officers in Reston. Phillips denied knowing Veciana. After the meeting Veciana told Schweiker that Phillips was not the man known to him as Bishop. Fonzi was unconvinced by this evidence. He found it difficult to believe Phillips would not have known the leader of Alpha 66. Especially as Phillips had been in charge of covert action in Cuba when Alpha 66 was established. Other information also emerged to undermine Phillips. CIA agent, Ron Crozier, who worked in Cuba during this period, claimed that Phillips sometimes used the code name, Maurice Bishop. Phillips testified before the House Select Committee on Assassinations on 25th April, 1978. He denied he ever used the name Maurice Bishop. He also insisted that he had never met Veciana. According to Larry Hancock (Someone Would Have Talked), just before his death Phillips told Kevin Walsh, an investigator with the House Select Committee on Assassinations: "My final take on the assassination is there was a conspiracy, likely including American intelligence officers." (Some books wrongly quote Phillips as saying: "My private opinion is that JFK was done in by a conspiracy, likely including rogue American intelligence people.") Phillips died of cancer on 7th July, 1988. He left behind an unpublished manuscript. The novel is about a CIA officer who lived in Mexico City. In the novel the character states: "I was one of those officers who handled Lee Harvey Oswald... We gave him the mission of killing Fidel Castro in Cuba... I don't know why he killed Kennedy. But I do know he used precisely the plan we had devised against Castro. Thus the CIA did not anticipate the president's assassination, but it was responsible for it. I share that guilt." Is this a confession? Phillips knew that people were speculating that he had organized the assassination? Phillips knew that after his death people like us would accuse him of this horrendous crime. Was he trying to shift the blame to people below him? Was he pointing the finger at people like David Sanchez Morales, Rip Robertson or E. Howard Hunt? Or was he lying? Was Phillips the man who organized the assassination? My own view is that the novel tells the truth. Although Phillips knew what was going on, Morales was the man who organized the assassination. I suspect that Morales was getting his orders from someone outside of the CIA. However, I am willing to be convinced that Phillips was the mastermind behind the assassination. http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKphillips.htm
  18. Does anyone know anything about this story? Jada Conforto was one of Jack Ruby’s strippers. According to Daniel Hopsticker, on the morning of JFK’s assassination, Jada had been in “such a panic to leave Dallas that she ran over a pedestrian with her white Cadillac convertible”. The traffic cop was told to contact Ruby who would “fix things”. Jada told the cop she needed to urgently get to New Orleans. Jada Conforto was never interviewed by the Warren Commission. However, the HSCA wanted to talk to her. That never happened. She was killed in a motorcycle accident during the investigation. The sister of Lena Wamstad, who was involved in the Barry Seal scandal, was Jada’s aunt. She told Hopsticker that Jada was “murdered because she knew too much.”
  19. Mystery Woman

    Does anyone know who this is? It is claimed that this woman could explain why Robert Kennedy and other leading politicians failed to demand a full investigation into the assassination of JFK.
  20. Nancy Carole Tyler

    I believe this woman is an important witness who had vital information on the assassination. Does anyone know who she is? I will give you a clue. The photograph shows her just before she took the fifth amendment in 1964. This pleased both Lyndon Johnson and Robert Kennedy. Unfortunately she changed her mind about this and died in an accident in 1965. Her roommate also died in another accident as well.
  21. Mystery Woman

    It is fairly well-known that Bobby Baker used Bill Thompson, a railroad lobbyist, to introduce Ellen Rometsch to John F. Kennedy. J. Edgar Hoover became aware of this and in July 1963, FBI agents questioned Rometsch about her past. They came to the conclusion that she was probably a Soviet spy. Hoover actually leaked this information to the journalist, Courtney Evans, that Rometsch worked for Walter Ulbricht, the communist leader of East Germany. A top-level FBI memo written in October, 1963, stated it was "alleged that the President and the Attorney General had availed themselves of services of playgirls." Hoover also leaked the information to Clark Mollenhoff. On 26th October, 1963, he wrote an article in the Des Moines Register claiming that the FBI had "established that the beautiful brunette had been attending parties with congressional leaders and some prominent New Frontiersmen from the executive branch of Government... The possibility that her activity might be connected with espionage was of some concern, because of the high rank of her male companions". The following day Robert Kennedy sent La Verne Duffy to meet Ellen Rometsch. His mission was to silence Rometsch before the press got to her. It was reported a few days later "men flashing U.S. security badges saw Mrs Rometsch and got her to sign a statement formally denying intimacies with important people." In a letter to Duffy she thanked him for providing her with money and assured him, "Of course I will keep quiet." This is where the story usually ends. However, in 2009-2010 Bobby Baker was interviewed by Donald Ritchie of the Senate Historical Office. "His recollections - of an age when senators drank all day, indulged in sexual dalliances with secretaries and constituents, accepted thousands of dollars in bribes and still managed to pass the most important legislation of the 20th century - were collected by the Senate Historical Office... The resulting 230-page manuscript was so ribald and riveting, so salacious and sensational, that the Historical Office refrained from its usual practice of posting such interviews online." The interviews were not released until 2013. It seems that the American media ignored this material. However, the German newspaper, Die Welt, took a lot of interest in this. It seems that they had managed to get hold of Rometsch’s 478-page heavily redacted FBI file (code number 105-122316). The most interesting thing about this file is that the FBI investigators were in contact with Rometsch from July 1963 to 1987. The newspaper has also investigated her links with East German intelligence: "In the archives of the Stasi documentation authority, there is not a single record in the intelligence files about the members of the family of Ellen Rometsch, who once lived in Saxony. Together with the findings of the Western intelligence services, therefore, everything speaks for the fact that the former East German citizen has never spied for the East." The newspaper has been trying to interview the elderly Ellen Rometsch who lives near Bonn. She is protected by her husband, Rolf Rometsch, who came over with his wife in 1961, to work at the German embassy in Washington. (They did officially divorce when the Kennedy story broke in 1963, but they remarried soon afterwards.) One of the most interesting aspects of the Bobby Baker interview with Donald Ritchie of the Senate Historical Office concerns Ellen Rometsch. Baker claims Rometsch returned to the United States in 1964 and had an affair with Gerald Ford during his time on the Warren Commission. The affair was used against him by Hoover who was frustrated that the Warren Commission was not sharing their findings, "So, (Hoover) had this tape where Jerry Ford was having oral sex with Ellen Rometsch. You know, his wife had a serious drug problem back then… Hoover blackmailed… Ford to tell him what they (the Warren Commission) were doing." http://spartacus-educational.com/JFKrometsch.htm
  22. When Lyndon B. Johnson became Vice President in 1960 he decided he would record some of the telephone calls he made or received. He then arranged for his personal assistant Mildred Stegall to make transcripts of these conversations. He told her that he wanted to use them to help him write his memoirs. From what we know of LBJ it is highly probable that he wanted to use this material to blackmail the people who he was talking to. He also exchanged this information with J. Edgar Hoover, the Director of the FBI. LBJ later destroyed some of these tapes and transcripts. The rest were handed over to Mildred Stegall with instructions that when he died this material had to be destroyed. Fortunately for us, she did not obey him. Instead, she packaged them up into eight Federal Records Center (FRC) boxes and after marking them “Top Secret”, they were sent to the LBJ Library. After the passing of John F. Kennedy Assassinations Records Collection Act of 1992, requests were made for these transcripts to be released. Around ten per cent were held back on grounds of national security but the rest were released to the public on 30th November, 1993. These transcripts give an insight into the thoughts of LBJ in the days following the assassination. They show that one subject dominated his thinking during that period. The subject that was of primary importance to LBJ was the Senate investigation into the activities of Bobby Baker. LBJ was not the only one interested in the Bobby Baker case. In the weeks leading up to the assassination, the Bobby Baker investigation, was the most important political story of the time. The death of JFK changed all that. It also enabled LBJ to use his position as president to prevent the publication of details of his corrupt relationship with Baker. J. Evetts Haley, a Texas businessman, was the first person to publish a book linking the Bobby Baker scandal with the assassination of John Kennedy (1). ”A Texan Looks at Lyndon” was published in 1964. It was a best seller and it is claimed that in Texas only the Bible outsold Haley's book that year. In the book Haley attempted to expose Johnson's corrupt political activities. This included a detailed look at the relationship between Johnson, Bobby Baker and Billy Sol Estes. Haley pointed out that three men who could have provided evidence in court against Johnson, George Krutilek, Harold Orr and Howard Pratt, all died of carbon monoxide poisoning from car engines. He also argued that Johnson was responsible for the deaths of Henry Marshall and John Douglas Kinser, a man that Mac Wallace was convicted of killing in 1951. Wallace had been working for Johnson since 1950. In May 1998 Walt Brown called a press conference in Dallas to discuss a previously unidentified fingerprint at the "sniper's nest" in the Texas School Book Depository. According to Brown this fingerprint had now been identified as belonging to Wallace. Haley also suggested that Johnson might have been responsible for the death of John F. Kennedy: "Johnson wanted power and with all his knowledge of political strategy and his proven control of Congress, he could see wider horizons of power as Vice-President than as Senate Majority Leader. In effect, by presiding over the Senate, he could now conceive himself as virtually filling both high and important positions - and he was not far from wrong.” (2) The journalist Joachim Joesten, was one of the first journalists to write a book on the Kennedy Assassination. (3) He could not get a publisher in the USA and so had to come to Britain to get “Oswald, Assassin or Fall Guy” published in 1964. In the book Joesten claimed that the Central Intelligence Agency, Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Dallas Police Department and a group of right-wing Texas oil millionaires conspired to kill Kennedy. (4) In 1968 Joesten published “The Dark Side of Lyndon Baines Johnson”. In the book Joseten claimed: "The Baker scandal then is truly the hidden key to the assassination, or more exact, the timing of the Baker affair crystallized the more or less vague plans to eliminate Kennedy which had already been in existence the threat of complete exposure which faced Johnson in the Baker scandal provided that final impulse he was forced to give the go-ahead signal to the plotters who had long been waiting for the right opportunity." (5) We now know that during this period the FBI and the CIA were putting out rumours that Joseten was a KGB agent who was attempting to undermine the US government. It is true that in 1930s he had been a member of the German Communist Party and had fled to the USA after Adolf Hitler had gained power. It is indeed possible that he had received information from the Soviet Union about the assassination of JFK. We know from recently released documents that following the JFK assassination Soviet leaders were convinced that LBJ was behind the assassination. However, it has only been in recent years that we have become fully aware of just how important the Bobby Baker case was to these events. Bobby Baker was born in Pickens, South Carolina in 1929. (6) At the age of 14 Baker became a page at the Senate. He was befriended by Lyndon B. Johnson and eventually became secretary to the Senate Majority Leader. At this time he obtained the nickname Little Lyndon. Harry McPherson, another Johnson aide, described Baker as: "He was very smart, very quick, and indefatigable. Just worked all the time. He was always running someplace to make some kind of a deal." Johnson also used Baker to obtain political information. He told Jenkins that it was very important to "read" politicians. He constantly told him: "Watch their hands, watch their eyes. Read eyes. No matter what a man is saying to you, it's not important as what you can read in his eyes. The most important thing a man has to tell you is what he's not telling you. The most important thing he has to say is what he's trying not to say." Robert A. Caro quotes Baker as saying: "He (Johnson) seemed to sense each man's individual price and the commodity he preferred as coin." (7) In the early 1950s Baker had also been involved in helping Intercontinental Hotels Corporation to establish casinos in the Dominican Republic. Baker arranged for Ed Levison, an associate of Meyer Lansky and Sam Giancana, to become involved in this deal. When the first of these casinos were opened in 1955, Baker and Johnson were invited as official guests. On the surface it seems surprising that Johnson should allow himself to be linked with leading Mafia figures. However, it has to be remembered just how much power Johnson had at this time. In 1955 Johnson became majority leader of the Senate. This made him the second most powerful man in the US. Only the president had more power than the majority leader of the Senate. His main power came from the control he had over the various Senate committees. It was these committees that made the important decisions. Johnson’s major concern was that these committees made the right decisions about granting federal contracts to commercial companies. At this time J. Edgar Hoover, the Director of the FBI, also had close links to people like Meyer Lansky and Sam Giancana. Hoover, like LBJ, thought he was untouchable. The events that followed showed that they were indeed right about this. By the 1950s Bobby Baker was Johnson’s key political adviser. We now know that Bobby Baker played an important role in persuading Johnson to become Kennedy’s running-mate in 1960. The journalist, Milton Viorst, later explained that: “What distinguished Baker from the rest of Lyndon's entourage, however, was that he, almost alone, argued that Johnson, failing to get the top spot, should agree to run with Kennedy as the Vice-Presidential nominee. Johnson's other friends, aware of the power of which the Majority Leader disposed, felt this was nonsense. Why Bobby persisted in this argument is by no means clear. After all, his whole orientation was toward the Senate. He knew the Vice-Presidency was an impotent office.” (8) In his autobiography, Wheeling and Dealing: Confessions of a Capitol Hill Operator (1978), Bobby Baker gives an account of how LBJ became JFK’s running-mate. Baker describes how Johnson told him that Kennedy was coming to see him at his hotel. John Connally was of the opinion that Kennedy would offer him the job. Johnson asked Baker what he should do. Baker replied: “It’s no disgrace to hold the second highest office in the land and be one heartbeat away from the presidency.” Connally added that Johnson would be able to deliver Texas for Kennedy. (9) At this stage Johnson appeared to be against the idea. He told Baker that he would have “trouble with some of my Texas friends if I decide to run.” Sam Rayburn was one of these “Texas friends” who was strongly opposed to the suggestion that Johnson should become Kennedy’s running-mate. He quoted another Texan, John Nance Garner, who held the post under Franklin D. Roosevelt, as saying: “The office ain’t worth a pitcher of warm spit.” However, according to Baker, John Connally and Phil Graham “worked on” Rayburn until he “came round” to the idea that Johnson should become Kennedy’s running-mate. Connally was part of the eventual deal, and became Secretary of the Navy, a key post in getting federal contracts to Texas companies. There still remained a significant number of opponents to Johnson’s strategy. Baker adds in his autobiography that “several Texas congressmen, spoiled by Johnson’s special attentions to their pet legislative schemes, begged him not to leave his powerful Senate post.” According to Baker, one of Johnson’s political friends resorted to threats of violence against Johnson if he became the vice-presidential candidate. This was oil millionaire, Robert S. Kerr. (10) In their book, The Case Against Congress, Drew Pearson and Jack Anderson claim that “Robert S. Kerr, oil millionaire, uranium king, cattle baron and Senator from Oklahoma… dominated the Senate’s back rooms in the late 1950s and early 1960s.” Pearson and Anderson point out that Kerr main concern in Congress was to preserve the oil depletion allowance. (11) In “Wheeling and Dealing” Baker described what happened when Kerr arrived at the meeting in Johnson’s hotel room: “Kerr literally was livid. There were angry red splotches on his face. He glared at me, at LBJ, and at Lady Bird. ‘Get me my .38,’ he yelled. ‘I’m gonna kill every damn one of you. I can’t believe that my three best friends would betray me.’ Senator Kerr did not seem to be joking. As I attempted to calm him he kept shouting that we’d combined to ruin the Senate, ruin ourselves, and ruin him personally.” Johnson responded to this outburst by telling Baker to take Kerr in the bathroom and “explain things to him”. Baker did this and after hearing about the reasons for Johnson’s decision to accept the post, “Senator Kerr put a burly arm around me and said, “Son, you are right and I was wrong. I’m sorry I mistreated you.” What did Baker tell Kerr that dramatically changed his mind on this issue? According to Baker, he told Kerr: “If he’s elected vice-president, he’ll be an excellent conduit between the White House and the Hill.” What is more, if Kennedy is defeated, Johnson can blame it on Kennedy’s religion and be the likely victor in the attempt to be the Democratic Party candidate in the 1964 election. Kerr would have been well aware of this argument before he entered the bathroom with Baker. If Kerr did change his mind about Johnson’s becoming Kennedy’s running-mate, then Baker told him something else in the bathroom. It could be that Johnson would insist that Kennedy did not do anything about the oil depletion allowance. We do know that during the campaign, Kennedy did write to senior figures in Texas promising not to interfere with the oil depletion allowance. Maybe there was something else. Maybe he suggested that Johnson would become president before 1964. In 1960 Johnson's was elected as vice president under John F. Kennedy. Baker remained as Johnson's secretary and political adviser. He continued to do business with Levison, Giancana and Ben Siegelbaum (an associate of Jimmy Hoffa) in the Dominican Republic. Baker argued that Dominican Republic could be a Mafia replacement for Cuba. However, these plans came to an end when the military dictator, Rafael Trujillo, was murdered on the orders of the CIA. President Kennedy now gave his support to Juan Bosch when he was elected to office in December, 1962. Baker had already arranged another source of income. In 1962 he had established the Serve-U-Corporation with his friend, Fred Black, and mobsters Ed Levenson and Benny Sigelbaum. The company was to provide vending machines for companies working on federally granted programs. The machines were manufactured by a company secretly owned by Sam Giancana and other mobsters based in Chicago. The president of Serve-U-Corporation was Eugene A. Hancock, who was a business partner of Grant Stockdale and George Smathers at Automatic Vending Services. Questions were asked about Stockdale's business involvement with Baker. In an interview he insisted he was "absolutely not" a stockholder in Serve-U-Corporation. He also pointed out that he had disposed of his holdings in Automatic Vending Services, more than a year earlier. Rumours began circulating that Baker was involved in corrupt activities. Although officially his only income was that of Secretary to the Majority in the Senate, he was clearly a very rich man. Baker was investigated by Attorney General Robert Kennedy. He discovered Baker had links to Clint Murchison and several Mafia bosses. Evidence also emerged that Lyndon Johnson was also involved in political corruption. This included the award of a $7 billion contract for a fighter plane, the F-111 (TFX), to General Dynamics, a company based in Texas. In 1962 John Williams, the senator from Delaware, began to investigate the activities of Bobby Baker. (12) One of his first discoveries was that Bobby Baker had bought a house for his attractive secretary, Nancy Carole Tyler. (13) Baker later commented in his autobiography, Wheeling and Dealing: Confessions of a Capitol Hill Operator: "Senator Williams was happy to announce such stories to the press. He also presumably enjoyed breaking the story of how I'd bought the $28,000 town house Carole Tyler lived in... It was a nice enough house, but the furnishings were vastly inflated as to worth and style, as were the reports which sounded as if orgies occurred there with the setting of the sun. There was an embarrassment involved, however. I had incorrectly and improperly listed Carole Tyler as my cousin when I applied for the loan, in order to satisfy the Federal Housing Authority's regulation that anyone buying an FHA-underwritten home must either live in it or have a relative living in it." According to W. Penn Jones Jr.: “Bobby Baker was about the first person in Washington to know that Lyndon Johnson was to be dumped as the Vice-Presidential candidate in 1964. Baker knew that President Kennedy had offered the spot on the ticket to Senator George Smathers of Florida... Baker knew because his secretary. Miss Nancy Carole Tyler, roomed with one of George Smathers' secretaries. Miss Mary Jo Kopechne had been another of Smathers' secretaries.” (14) Baker was having an affair with Tyler. What Williams did not find out was that Baker was organizing sex parties in the house he had purchased for Tyler. Both Johnson and Hoover knew about these parties. In fact, it was a “honey pot” blackmail operation. Johnson found it fairly easy to get politicians to do what he wanted if they had been to any of his parties. It was also the place where political bribes were handed over. This was all recorded and added to the files kept by Johnson and Hoover. Baker also owned the Quorum Club, another place that was used to acquire information about politicians that could later be used for blackmail. Johnson used people like Baker, Walter Jenkins and Fred Black to pay money to these politicians. Once they had received money from the sources they became under Johnson’s control. In return, they got positions on important Senate committees. However, they always had to vote the way Johnson told them. According to Anthony Summers (Official and Confidential: The Secret Life of J. Edgar Hoover) Bill Thompson asked Bobby Baker if he would arrange a meeting between Ellen Rometsch and John F. Kennedy. Baker later said that: "He (Kennedy) sent back word it was the best time he ever had in his life. That was not the only time. She saw him on other occasions. It went on for a while." (15) Baker then told LBJ and Hoover about Kennedy’s relationship with Ellen Rometsch. (16) In July 1963 Federal Bureau of Investigation agents questioned Romesch about her past. They came to the conclusion that she was probably a Soviet spy. Hoover actually leaked information to the journalist, Courtney Evans, that Romesch worked for Walter Ulbricht, the communist leader of East Germany. When Robert Kennedy was told about this information, he ordered her to be deported. The FBI had discovered that there were several women at the Quorum Club, run by Baker, who had been involved in relationships with leading politicians. This included both John and Robert Kennedy. It was particularly worrying that this included Mariella Novotny (17) and Suzy Chang (18). This was a problem because they had both initially came from communist countries and had been named as part of the spy ring that had trapped John Profumo, the British war minister, a few months earlier. President Kennedy told J. Edgar Hoover that he "personally interested in having this story killed". It also explains why he asked his ambassador to London, David Bruce, to give him daily reports on the Profumo case. When I was checking out this story I made contact with Mandy Rice Davies (19). In July, 1962, Mandy Rice-Davies and Christine Keeler (20) were taken to the USA, by Earl Fenton, a screenwriter (21). In 1962 a FBI memo written by J. Edgar Hoover stated that Felton had taken part in sex orgies that involved Christine Keeler, Mandy Rice-Davies, Mariella Novotny, Douglas Fairbanks, Lord Astor, Eugene Ivanov, John Profumo and Stephen Ward. (22) I suspect that the plan was to use them in the Bobby Baker operation. However, Rice-Davies denies this and says they were to film a television commercial. In fact, she denies ever being a prostitute. According to Christine Keeler’s autobiography, Felton was a CIA agent. (23) The evidence indicates that Felton was also a FBI informant. John Williams, the Republican senator from Delaware, was the main source of information on the corrupt activities of Baker. Williams became known as the "Sherlock Holmes of Capitol Hill" and the "Conscience of the Senate". In 1958 he contributed to the downfall of Sherman Adams, Eisenhower's chief of staff. During a 15 year period his investigations resulted in over 200 indictments and 125 convictions. What makes Williams noteworthy was that he was willing to expose the corruption of both Republicans and Democrats. Because of his integrity Williams received a great deal of information from people who wished to expose corruption. On 3rd October, 1963, Williams went to Senator Mike Mansfield, the majority leader, and to Senator Everett Dirksen, the minority leader, and arranged for them to call Bobby Baker before the leadership at a closed meeting on 8th October. Baker never appeared before the Senate's leadership: the day before his scheduled appearance he resigned his post. Soon afterwards, Fred Korth, the Navy Secretary, also from Texas, and the replacement for John Connaly, when he became Governor of Texas, and a close friend of LBJ, was also forced to resign because of the F-111 contract. (24) Williams now introduced a resolution calling upon the Committee on Rules and Administration to conduct an investigation of the financial and business interests and possible improprieties of any Senate employee or former employee. On 10th October, the Senate adopted this resolution. The committee was made up of three Republican members, Carl Curtis, John Sherman Cooper and Hugh Scott and six Democrats, B. Everett Jordan, Carl Hayden, Claiborne Pell, Joseph S. Clark, Howard W. Cannon and Robert C. Byrd. Johnson had considerable control over the six Democrats and one of the three Republicans, John Sherman Cooper. (25) It is no coincidence that Cooper is also selected by LBJ and Hoover to serve on the Warren Commission. The telephone transcripts between LBJ and Hoover, shows that both men considered Cooper to be a good choice, especially as he had a reputation as a “liberal”. It is not clear what they had on Cooper, but it was clearly enough for him not to cause problems for LBJ. Going by the telephone transcripts, the only people Johnson did not have anything on was Curtis and Scott. However, in a telephone conversation with George Smathers on 10th January, 1964, Johnson claims that Scott was involved with the same women that had entrapped John Kennedy. He tells Smathers to tell Richard Russell to get “Curtis and Scott” to behave. Russell, who was also on the Warren Commission, was Johnson’s main fixer in Congress. Johnson also told Smathers to warn Scott that he would take away some important federal contracts from Philadelphia. The next stage in this story is very interesting. Hoover leaked the information about Ellen Rometsch to the journalist Clark Mollenhoff. On 26th October, 1963 he wrote an article in the Des Moines Register claiming that the FBI had "established that the beautiful brunette had been attending parties with congressional leaders and some prominent New Frontiersmen from the executive branch of Government... The possibility that her activity might be connected with espionage was of some concern, because of the high rank of her male companions". Mollenhoff claimed that John Williams "had obtained an account" of Rometsch's activity and planned to pass this information to the Senate Rules Committee, the body investigating Baker. (26) The following day Robert Kennedy sent La Verne Duffy to West Germany to meet Ellen Rometsch. In exchange for a great deal of money she agreed to sign a statement formally "denying intimacies with important people." Kennedy now contacted Hoover and asked him to persuade the Senate leadership that the Senate Rules Committee investigation of this story was "contrary to the national interest". He also warned on 28th October that other leading members of Congress would be drawn into this scandal and so was "contrary to the interests of Congress, too". Hoover had a meeting with Mike Mansfield, the Democratic leader of the Senate and Everett Dirksen, the Republican counterpart. What was said at this meeting has never been released. However, as a result of the meeting that took place in Mansfield's home the Senate Rules Committee decided not to look into the Rometsch scandal. I believe that Hoover and Johnson leaked this information on John Kennedy as a warning concerning the Bobby Baker case. Had Johnson heard about what Kennedy had said to his personal secretary, Evelyn Lincoln? According to Lincoln, Kennedy had decided that because of this emerging scandal he was going to drop Johnson as his running mate in the 1964 election. He told Lincoln that he was going to replace Johnson with Terry Sanford. (27) Maybe, Johnson had also discovered where John Williams had been receiving his information from. Burkett Van Kirk, chief counsel for the Republican minority on the Senate Rules Committee later told Seymour Hersh that Senator John Williams was being fed information by Robert Kennedy about the involvement of Lyndon Johnson and Bobby Baker in a series of scandals. Van Kirk claimed that Robert Kennedy supplied this information because he wanted “to get rid of Johnson.” (28) There is now enough evidence to suggest that in 1963 there was an attempt by the Kennedy brothers to get rid of Johnson as vice-president. Their main weapon was John Williams, a man considered to be the most honest in the Senate. At the same time Kennedy had announced in January, 1963, that he wanted to do away with the oil depletion allowance. It is estimated that the proposed removal of the oil depletion allowance would result in a loss of around $300 million a year to Texas oilmen. A Senate committee was already looking into the General Dynamics F-111 contract and Johnson’s friend, Fred Korth, had just been forced to resign. (Johnson and already trapped Robert McNamara, the Secretary of Defense, into this scandal and was already under his tight control.) However, Johnson was fighting back and was behind the leaks concerning Kennedy’s relationship with prostitutes linked to the Soviet Union. Despite Johnson’s best efforts, the Kennedy brothers believed that something that was going to happen on 22nd November, 1963, that was finally going to get rid of Johnson. A man named Don B. Reynolds had gone to see John Williams about evidence he had against Johnson and Baker. Williams arranged for Reynolds to appear before a closed session of the Senate Rules Committee on 22nd November. Reynolds, who was a friend of Baker, claimed that LBJ had demanded that he provided kickbacks in return for this business. This included a $585 Magnavox stereo. Reynolds also had to pay for $1,200 worth of advertising on KTBC, Johnson's television station in Austin. Reynolds had paperwork for this transaction including a delivery note that indicated the stereo had been sent to the home of Johnson. (29) Reynolds also told of seeing a suitcase full of money which Baker described as a "$100,000 payoff to Johnson for his role in securing the Fort Worth TFX contract". His testimony came to an end when news arrived that President Kennedy had been assassinated. The telephone transcripts show that as soon as LBJ became president he contacted B. Everett Jordan, the chairman of the Senate Rules Committee, to see if there was any chance of stopping Reynolds’ testimony from being published. Jordan replied that he would do what he could but warned Johnson that some members of the committee wanted Reynold's testimony to be released to the public. On 6th December, 1963, Jordan spoke to Johnson on the telephone and said he was doing what he could to suppress the story because "it might spread (to) a place where we don't want it spread." There was also another man who was threatening to tell what he knew about the Bobby Baker case and the assassination of John Kennedy. His name was Edward Grant Stockdale (30). In 1949 Stockdale met Kennedy through George Smathers. The three man became close friends. In 1959 Grant Stockdale was named director of the Florida State committee to elect John F. Kennedy. After Kennedy won the nomination, Stockdale actively campaigned for him in West Virginia, Oregon, and New York. He was also a member of the Democratic Party's National Finance Committee. Grant Stockdale also formed a business partnership with George Smathers and Eugene A. Hancock. Their company, Automatic Vending Services Incorporated, was involved in providing vending machines to government institutions. In March, 1961, President Kennedy appointed Stockdale as Ambassador to Ireland. This decision was criticised by some political commentators. Time Magazine pointed out: "On the campaign trail last fall, Jack Kennedy pledged that U.S. embassies would no longer be political plums for heavy campaign contributors, would be staffed solely "on the basis of ability." But last week, as reports of the Administration's favorites for diplomatic posts filtered through Washington, many of Kennedy's staunchest admirers wondered aloud where reward stopped and ability began.... Among the front runners for top ambassadorial assignments... Grant Stockdale, 45, a Miami real estate dealer and former administrative assistant to Jack Kennedy's old Senate pal, Florida Democrat George Smathers, will be Ambassador to Ireland." (31) Several newspaper began asking questions about Grant Stockdale's relationship with prosperous businessman, Sidney Kessler. It emerged that Kessler gave Stockdale a $5,000 interest-free loan at a time when he had applied for permission to construct a $8 million apartment building in Miami. When this came to the attention of Kennedy he told Stockdale to pay the money back. According to the Chicago Daily News Stockdale claimed in an interview that "the President was afraid the loan could make look like I was finagling around with the FHA." In April 1961 Stockdale was served with papers in a $131,000 damages suit by Pan-Am Tobacco Corporation. The New York Times reported: "The suit alleged that he had used undue influence to gain contracts for Automatic Vending Services, Inc., a Miami company in which he owned stock." Pan-Am claimed it its suit that Stockdale had been instrumental in gaining for his company the vending service contract at Aerodex Incorporated, an aircraft engine maintenance company in Miami. There were also concerns about contracts totalling $500,000 a year at Patrick Air Force Base and the Air Force missile test centre at Cape Kennedy. Stockdale argued that Pan-Am was attempting "to get some publicity because I am a United States Ambassador". The Pan-Am suit was eventually dismissed as "frivolous" in Dade County Circuit Court, and the Florida Circuit Court of Appeals subsequently upheld the lower court. Questions were also being asked about Stockdale's business involvement with Bobby Baker. In an interview he insisted he was "absolutely not" a stockholder in Serve-U-Corporation, the vending company which had figured largely in the Baker investigation. On paper this was true, his investment was controlled by his business partner, Eugene A. Hancock, who was President of Serve-U-Corporation. Stockdale also pointed out that he had disposed of his holdings in Automatic Vending Services, more than a year earlier. However, under pressure from President John F. Kennedy, he resigned as ambassador in July, 1962 and was replaced by Matthew H. McCloskey. Another member of JFK’s Irish Mafia, McCloskey was forced to resign in 1964 over his business relationship with Bobby Baker. (32) According to Seymour Hersh (The Dark Side of Camelot), at the beginning of November, 1963, John Kennedy asked Stockdale to raise $50,000 for his personal use. Stockdale told friends that the money had something to do with the Bobby Baker case. This information came from Stockdale’s son. He said a family friend had gone with his father, Grant said, to the Kennedy compound to deliver the money. "Kennedy said, Thank you, opened a nearby closet door, and threw the briefcase in there," Grant was told. "The closet was full of briefcases." The suggestion is that in November 1963, JFK was being blackmailed by Baker. Stockdale was involved in raising this money. However, at the same time he was a business associate of Baker’s. On 26th November, Grant Stockdale flew to Washington and talked with Robert Kennedy and Edward Kennedy. It is my view that he gave the brothers information about the assassination. I suspect that what he knew came from Baker. However, he told his wife that the brothers were not interested in acting on this information. He found this very disturbing and understandably began to fear for his safety. On his return Stockdale told several of his friends that "the world was closing in." On 1st December, he spoke to his attorney, William Frates who later recalled: "He started talking. It didn't make much sense. He said something about 'those guys' trying to get him. Then about the assassination." Edward Grant Stockdale died on 2nd December, 1963 when he fell (or was pushed) from his office on the thirteenth story of the Dupont Building in Miami. Stockdale did not leave a suicide note but his friend, George Smathers, claimed that he had become depressed as a result of the death of Kennedy. In June 2004 I was put into contact with Grant Stockdale’s daughter, Anne. She claimed that her father had been involved in some undercover activities for JFK: “One thing I do know is that Kennedy asked Daddy to go to the Air Force Base South of Miami to see if (against Kennedy's orders) bombs were being loaded on the planes. Bombs were being loaded on the planes!! I believe one of the reasons Daddy was killed was because he knew that the Government was being run by the Military Complex. The Military Complex didn't want the American People to realize (and still don't ) that they were calling the shots. Daddy knew he was being followed... & he told Mom that they were going to get him... and they did. There was an attempt on my life also several days after Daddy's funeral . I realize now that this was a scare tactic to silence my Mother... i.e. if you speak about anything, Your kids are dead. It worked!!” (33) Lyndon Johnson was obsessed with the Bobby Baker case in the days following the assassination. One of the most fascinating aspect of the Johnson telephone transcripts concerns the cover-up of the case. Abe Fortas, a lawyer who represented both Johnson and Bobby Baker, worked behind the scenes in an effort to keep this information from the public. Johnson also arranged for a smear campaign to be organized against Don Reynolds. To help him do this J. Edgar Hoover passed to Johnson the FBI file on Reynolds. In 1965 Johnson nominated Fortas as a member of the Supreme Court. Fortas was forced to resign from the Supreme Court in May 1969, when he was found guilty of taking a bribe. (34) On 17th January, 1964, the Senate Rules Committee voted to release to the public Reynold's secret testimony. Johnson responded by leaking information from Reynolds' FBI file to Drew Pearson and Jack Anderson. On 5th February, 1964, the Washington Post reported that Reynolds had lied about his academic success at West Point. The article also claimed that Reynolds had been a supporter of Joseph McCarthy and had accused business rivals of being secret members of the American Communist Party. It was also revealed that Reynolds had made anti-Semitic remarks while in Berlin in 1953. (35) Jack Anderson worked with the OSS in China during the war with Paul Helliwell and Ray S. Cline, who later became senior figures in the CIA. Soon after the CIA was established in 1947, Anderson got a job as Drew Pearson’s assistant. (36) In 1966 it was Jack Anderson that published the story about the possible Mafia links with the assassination of JFK. This took place during the Jim Garrison investigation that was showing links between the CIA and anti-Castro Cubans and the assassination. A few weeks later the New York Times reported that Johnson had used information from secret government documents to smear Reynolds. It also reported that Johnson's officials had been applying pressure on the editors of newspapers not to print information that had been disclosed by Reynolds in front of the Senate Rules Committee. Even so, the story failed to make the front-pages of the national newspapers. This is understandable. Two months earlier, the president had been assassinated. The public was in no mood to drive another from office on the grounds of corruption. Don Reynolds also lost his desire to testify against Johnson. Reynolds told John Williams after the assassination: "My God! There's a difference between testifying against a President of the United States and a Vice President. If I had known he was President, I might not have gone through with it." Maybe there were other reasons for this change of approach. Reynolds also appeared before the Committee on Rules and Administration on 1st December, 1964. Before the hearing Reynolds supplied a statement implicating Bobby Baker and Matthew H. McCloskey in financial corruption. However, the Democrats had a 6-3 majority on the Committee and Reynolds was not allowed to fully express the role that Johnson had played in this deal. Eugene Hancock also appeared before the committee. Hancock testified he was president of Serve-U-Corporation "only in name" and knew little about its affairs. He went onto insist he had no personal knowledge that Bobby Baker was a big stockholder in the firm. Hancock swore he never gave Baker any money, and denied that Baker was to share in commissions he expected from a contract with a Washington area defense plant. The Baker investigation continued. In 1964 Nancy Carole Tyler was called before the Senate Rules Committee. Tyler took the fifth amendment and refused to provide any information that would implicate Bobby Baker in any corrupt activities. Tyler moved back to Tennessee but returned in 1965 to work with Baker as his bookkeeper at the Carousel Motel. Tyler believed that Baker would leave his wife. When he refused, she became very angry and according to Baker, made scenes. This included threats to commit suicide. On 10th May, 1965, Tyler, died in a plane crash, near Ocean City, Maryland. Here is Bobby Baker’s account of her death in his autobiography: “On Sunday morning she and her roommate, a young woman named Dee McCartney, began having drinks with a West Virginia man, Robert O. Davis, who had been vacationing at the Carousel for about a week. She originally had intended to take a sightseeing tour over the eleven-mile-long island on which the Carousel was built, in Davis's private plane, but the morning weather was judged too soupy for flying. They continued to drink; observers later told me the pilot appeared to be pretty tipsy. About 2 p.m., Robert Davis and Carole Tyler drove to the Ocean City airport, the weather having turned bright and sunny, and went up in his airplane. Witnesses later said that the single-engine aircraft approached the Carousel, buzzed it a few times at low altitudes, and then began to pull up sharply as it banked into a turn taking it out over the Atlantic. The aircraft failed to come out of the turn. It hit the water nose-first at high speed and sank like a stone, only a couple of hundred yards from the Carousel.” (37) On 26th November, 1963, President Johnson told the Joint Chief of Staffs: “Gentlemen, I want you to know I'm not going to let Vietnam go the way China did. I'm personally committed. I'm not going to take one soldier out of there 'til they know we mean business in Asia… You just get me elected, and I'll give you your damned war.” As president, Johnson used his power to close down the committee looking into the TFX deal. This was very convenient as General Dynamics, the Texas based company that got the contract, had been major Johnson’s donors during his political career. So had two other Texas based companies, Bell Helicopters and Brown & Root (Halliburton). All three were the major beneficiaries of the Vietnam War. Bobby Baker’s lawyer, Edward Bennett Williams, was considered to be a mobster lawyer who had defended amongst others, Jimmy Hoffa. However, he also represented John Connally and Richard Helms, the Director of the CIA. In 1967 Baker was found guilty of seven counts of theft, fraud and income tax evasions. However, he was never charged with the serious corruption offences that would have brought people like Johnson into court. This included accepting large sums in "campaign donations" intended to buy influence with various senators, but had kept the money for himself. He was sentenced to three years in federal prison but served only sixteen months. Nancy Carole Tyler, flatmate, Mary Jo Kopechne, died in Ted Kennedy’s car on 17th July, 1969. Bobby Baker is still alive but except for publishing his self-serving memoirs, Wheeling and Dealing: Confessions of a Capitol Hill Operator (1978) he has kept a low profile and has refused to discuss his relationship with Lyndon Johnson in public. It is highly unlikely that we will ever discover if Joachim Joesten, was right when he said the Baker scandal is the hidden key to the assassination of John Kennedy. Those involved are either dead or unwilling to incriminate themselves. Any important documentary evidence was destroyed long ago. However, the case does highlight the level of corruption that existed in Washington in 1963 and it does raise the possibility that Kennedy died because of his plans to clean the system up. Instead, we got Lyndon Johnson, the most corrupt president in American history. Notes (1) J. Evetts Haley, A Texan Looks at Lyndon (1964) (2) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKhaleyE.htm (3) Joachim Joesten, Oswald, Assassin or Fall Guy? (1964) (4) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKjoesten.htm (5) Joachim Joesten, The Dark Side of Lyndon Baines Johnson (1968) (6) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKbakerB.htm (7) Robert A. Caro, Lyndon Johnson: Master of the Senate (2002) (8) Milton Viorst, Hustlers and Heroes (1971) (9) Bobby Baker, Wheeling and Dealing: Confessions of a Capitol Hill Operator (1978) (10) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKkerrR.htm (11) Drew Pearson and Jack Anderson, The Case Against Congress (1968) (12) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKwilliamsJ.htm (13) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKtylerN.htm (14) W. Penn Jones Jr, Texas Midlothian Mirror (31st July, 1969) (15) Anthony Summers, Official and Confidential: The Secret Life of J. Edgar Hoover (1993) (16) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKrometsch.htm (17) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKnovotny.htm (18) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKchangS.htm (19) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/SPYdavies.htm (20) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/SPYkeeler.htm (21) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/SPYfelton.htm (22) J. Edgar Hoover, memo, June, 1963 (23) Christine Keeler, The Truth at Last (2001) (24) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKkorth.htm (25) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/USAcopperJS.htm (26) Clark Mollenhoff, Des Moines Register (26th October, 1963) (27) Evelyn Lincoln, Kennedy and Johnson (1968) (28) Seymour Hersh, The Dark Side of Camelot (1997) (29) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKreynoldsD.htm (30) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKstockdale.htm (31) Time Magazine (17th February, 1961) (32) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKmccloskey.htm (33) Anne Stockdale, email (June, 2004) (34) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKfortasA.htm (35) Jack Anderson, Washington Post (5th February, 1964) (36) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/USAandersonJ.htm (37) Bobby Baker, Wheeling and Dealing: Confessions of a Capitol Hill Operator (1978) (38) http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKkopechne.htm
  23. I have never heard the name William Frank Buckley mentioned in relation to the JFK assassination. However, there is evidence to suggest that he was willing to go to extreme measures to get Barry Goldwater elected in 1964. Is it possible that after the Cuban Missile Crisis and the failure of Operation Tilt, Buckley thought that more extreme measures were needed. Buckley has had an interesting career. He is the son of William Buckley Sr., a Texas oil millionaire. After the war Buckley enrolled at Yale University. He joined the Skull and Bones Society. Other members included George H. W. Bush, the future director of the CIA. Buckley soon became involved in right-wing politics and was involved in disrupting the 1948 Henry Wallace presidential campaign. In many ways, Wallace was an early example of JFK. He moved sharply to the left once in power (in Franklin D. Roosevelt's cabinet). Wallace was also horrified by the possibility of nuclear war (the issue that changed JFK's views on the Cold War). During this period Buckley described himself as a "revolutionary against the present liberal order". In 1951 Buckley joined the Central Intelligence Agency and worked with E. Howard Hunt in Mexico City. Despite the fact that Buckley is one of America's most prolific writers, he has said next to nothing about this part of his life. While with the CIA he published God and Man at Yale: The Superstitions of Academic Freedom. He also worked with Eudocio Ravines on The Road to Yenan, a book about the communist conspiracy to obtain world domination. According to Buckley, he left the CIA after a few months. In my opinion he never really left the CIA. Instead, it was decided that he would be more useful to the agency as an "independent" journalist. In other words, he was to become a key figure in Operation Mockingbird. Buckley's first job after leaving the CIA was to become editor of The American Mercury. He continued to be active in right-wing politics and in 1953 Buckley established the Intercollegiate Society of Individualists (ISI). This was modeled on the Intercollegiate Socialist Society (ISS) that had been founded by Jack London in 1905. The ISI distributed free copies of right-wing books such as Road to Serfdom (Friedrich A. Hayek) and The Income Tax: Root of all Evil (Frank Chodorov). This also fits into the strategy of the CIA's Operation Mockingbird strategy (see the 1976 Frank Church report). Buckley also joined forces with Willi Schlamm to start up a new right-wing journal entitled the National Review. Schlamm, who had previously been literary editor of The Freeman, a conservative magazine published by Henry Luce. The magazine was funded by right-wing figures including Adolphe Menjou, Spruille Braden, Roger Milliken, Clarence Manion and Robert Welch, the founder of the John Birch Society. I suspect that Tom Braden's CIA funds were also used to keep this journal going. In September, 1960, Buckley, Douglas Caddy and Marvin Liebman established the far right group, Young Americans for Freedom (YAF). The first meeting was held at Buckley's home in Sharon, Connecticut. Caddy became YAF's first president. Its first national council included eleven members of the John Birch Society. The main mission of the YAF was to “prepare young people for the struggle ahead with Liberalism, Socialism and Communism”. Tom Hayden and other leaders of the Students for a Democratic Society compared the YAF to the Hitler Youth. The main objective of Buckley and the YAF was to support the efforts of Barry Goldwater to become the Republican Party candidate to take on John F. Kennedy in the forthcoming presidential election. Buckley and Goldwater both believed that the link to Robert Welch and the John Birch Society posed a threat to this objective. As a result Buckley used the National Review to attack the neo-fascist views of Welch. Donald Freed has argued that E. Howard Hunt and Charles Colson were also behind the formation of YAF. Ramparts Magazine documented a wide range of different illegal strategies used by YAF to get Goldwater the Republican nomination in 1960 and 1964. This included bombings and assassination attempts. Is it possible that by November 1963 Buckley knew that Goldwater would not be able to defeat JFK in 1964? After his experiences with the covert actions of YAF, might he have been tempted to use more extreme methods to stop JFK being reelected? The YAF failed in its task to get Goldwater the presidency. However, it is interesting that the same figures in the YAF turn up in the early 1970s carrying out dirty tricks against the Democrats. Buckley has something else in common with David Phillips and E. Howard Hunt. Over the years he has written a series of novels about CIA covert operations. His hero is named: Blackford Oakes. It seems he learnt a lot during his short time in the CIA. In 2001 he published the novel "Spytime: The Undoing of James Jesus Angleton".
  24. A good friend has sent me a copy of a CIA monograph published in October, 1993. It was obtained under the JFK Act in November, 2003. The document is written by Cleveland C. Cram, who worked for the CIA between 1949 and 1975, eventually serving as Chief of Station in Europe and the Western Hemisphere. Cram was a member of the CIA’s Center for the Study of Intelligence (CSI). Established in February 1975 as an in-house think tank, its publications were used for in-service training. The document is entitled “Of Moles and Molehunters: A Review of Counterintelligence Literature”. Cram looks at the reliability of information found in books about the American and British intelligence agencies. It is in fact very revealing as it looks at the sources that the authors used and the conclusions they came to in their books. Cram praises certain authors for writing accurate accounts of these covert activities. He is especially complimentary about the following authors: David C. Martin (Wilderness of Mirrors), Gordon Brook-Shepherd (The Storm Birds), Andrew Boyle (The Climate of Treason), David Wise (Molehunt) and Thomas Mangold (Cold Warrior). Cram points out that these authors managed to persuade former CIA officers to tell the truth about their activities. In some cases, they were even given classified documents. Cram is particularly complimentary about the Wilderness of Mirrors, a book about the exploits of William Harvey and James Angleton. He points out that Martin does “not name his sources, footnote the book, or provide a bibliography and other academic paraphernalia” but is invariably accurate about what he says about the CIA. Cram adds that luckily Martin’s book did not sell well and is now a collectors item (I have just managed to order a copy from Abebooks – they still have other copies if you are interested). http://www.abebooks.co.uk/servlet/SearchRe...IRRORS&sortby=2 Cram is particularly critical of the work of Edward J. Epstein (Legend: The Secret World of Lee Harvey Oswald and Deception: The Invisible War Between the KGB and the CIA). Cram makes it clear that Epstein, working with James Angleton, was part of a disinformation campaign. Cram writes: “Legend… gave Angleton and his supporters an advantage by putting their argument adroitly – if dishonestly – before the public first. Not until David Martin responded with Wilderness of Mirrors was an opposing view presented coherently.”