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Oswald: Communist/Socialist?


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#1 John Dolva

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Posted 16 September 2005 - 09:04 AM

Communist/Socialist/Marxist/Trotskyist/Leninist

Perhaps it's a bit bewildering making sense of these terms but as they are labels used in the context it's important to explore their meaning.

They are words used by many different groupings on the political spectrum.

Communist to a communist can mean different to that used by a JBS member for example, and then there is the proper definition which may be subtly but importantly different again.

Oswald said "I am not a Communist, I am a Marxist."

Communism is a social structure that has never existed. The proper name for the Soviet Union is Union of Socialist Soviet Republics. Socialist, not communist.

Through a period of struggle with capitalism a socialist forms workers groupings called soviets. These are connected to other soviets. Nationally they take a republican model. Globally they unite.

USSR CCCP

At some point capitalism is defeated globally. Socialism then sets about the transformation towards Communism.

A very brief history of the internationals

Marx started what is called the first international. He had trouble with swiss guilds and the second international came into being. this second international disintegrated into what now forms the back bone of the modern Labor parties of the west. Lenin and Leon Trotsky's Bolsheviks (majority) as opposed to the Mencheviks (minority) formed the third international after the 1917 revolution. Following the revolution came a counter revolution, on the one hand, the capitalist supported white army and on the other the Trotsky led reds.

The reds won, Lenin died, famine came. Stalin. Massive across the board purges of the old Bolcheviks of whom Trotsky as the formulator of 'the permanent revolution' theory as the transition towards communism became central. Stalin went the opposite way. 'socialism in one country'.

The fourth international founded by the exiled and later assassinated Trotsky.

The word Trotsky became synonymous with traitor in the third international. This is the Russia that Oswald went to. Very unwise to call one self a Trotskyist (no Trotskyist calls him/herself trotskyITE, its an insult used by opponents or those who dont realise that context).

If one is a well read marxist then one would call oneself a socialist. Lenin and others, notably Trotsky developed the practical aspects of marxism so to call oneself a Marxist Leninist is correct. There is argument that Lenin and Trotsky were far closer than Lenin and Stalin. so its not unreasonable to associate a Marxist Leninist with Trotskyism. Just unwise to go to the USSR as a Trotskyist.

When the shine had gone off Uncle Joe the stalinists in the west started to suffer from their inner contradictions.

By the time of 1963 in Dallas, for Oswald to say he is not a Communist but a Marxist Leninist but not a Trotskyist smacks of opportunism, not principled dedication as one might expect to find from someone presenting himself as he tried to do. However also to call himself a Marxist and not a Communist is correct in the sense that a socialist works towards communism as a marxist and it would be presumptuous to take the title of communist. This label perhaps has been forced on the socialist by the opponents in the west seeking to demonise socialism.

This is perhaps a 'purist' interpretation that's a result of involvement with the Socialist Workers Party, but as this was one of the organisations that Oswald was connected to it might be relevant to see things from such a perspective. (Personally there are things about Oswald that would make me say "Naah that guys no marxist, what game's he playing?")

This guy seemed to drift untouched from one end of the spectrum to the other. Why??

Because he was insignificant? because he was controlled, the meat in a sandwich, a patsy? because he was a brilliant actor?

Not quite as simple as it might seem. The words he and others used to describe him are open to interpretation. the different interpretation gives different meaning to events.

#2 Greg Parker

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Posted 16 September 2005 - 03:52 PM

John, nice work -- and right on the money... except for one not insignificant point. Oswald said he was a Marxist and NOT a Marxist-Leninist. (see transcript of NO radio debate).

I'll add Ruth Paine said in testimony that he had told her he was a Trotskyist. If he really did say it, it would be interesting. But may be even interesting would be if she was lying - and why.

Then there was Mike Paine's father, Lyman... a Trotskyist splitter.

And the riddle of the opposng leftist newspapers in the BY photo/s

Not to mention all those Trotskyists who went on to become neocons and fascists.

greg

communist socialist marxist trotskyist leninist

perhaps it's a bit bewildering making sense of these terms but as they are labels used in the context it's important to explore their meaning.

They are words used by many different groupings on the political spectrum.

Communist to a communist can mean different to that used by a JBS member for example, and then there is the proper definition which may be subtly but importantly different again.

Oswald said "I am not a Communist, I am a Marxist."

Communism is a social structure that has never existed. The proper name for the Soviet Union is Union of Socialist Soviet Republics. Socialist, not communist.

Through a period of struggle with capitalism a socialist forms workers groupings called soviets. These are connected to other soviets. Nationally they take a republican model. Globally they unite.

USSR CCCP

At some point capitalism is defeated globally. Socialism then sets about the transformation towards Communism.

A very brief history of the internationals

Marx started what is called the first international. He had trouble with swiss guilds and the second international came into being. this second international disintegrated into what now forms the back bone of the modern Labor parties of the west. Lenin and Leon Trotsky's Bolsheviks ((majority) as opposed to the Mencheviks (minority))formed the third international after the 1917 revolution. Following the revolution came a counter revolution, on the one hand, the capitalist supported white army and on the other the Trotsky led reds.

The reds won, Lenin died, famine came. Stalin. Massive across the board purges of the old Bolcheviks of whom Trotsky as the formulator of 'the permanent revolution' theory as the transition towards communism became central. Stalin went the opposite way. 'socialism in one country'.

The fourth international founded by the exiled and later assassinated Trotsky.

The word trotsky became synonymous with traitor in the third international. This is the Russia that  Oswald went to. Very unwise to call one self a Trotskyist (no Trotskyist calls him/herself trotskyITE, its an insult used by opponents or those who dont realise that context).

If one is a well read marxist then one would call oneself a socialist. Lenin and others, notably trotsky developed the practical aspects of marxism so to call oneself a marxist leninist is correct. There is argument that Lenin and Trotsky were far closer than Lenin and Stalin. so its not unreasonable to associate a marxist leninist with trotskyism. Just unwise to go to the USSR as a Trotskyist.

When the shine had gone off Uncle Joe the stalinists in the west started to suffer from their inner contradictions.

By the time of 1963 in Dallas, for Oswald to say he is not a Communist but a Marxist Leninist but not a Trotskyist smacks of opportunism, not principled dedication as one might expect to find from someone presenting himself as he tried to do. However also to call himself a marxist and not a communist is correct in the sense that a socialist works towards communism as a marxist and it would be presumptuous to take the title of communist. this label perhaps has been forced on the socialist by the opponents in thew west seeking to demonise socialism.

This is perhaps a 'purist' interpretation that's a result of involvement with the socialist workers party, but as this was one of the organisations that Oswald was connected to it might be relevant to see things from such a perspective. (Personally there are things about Oswald that would make me say "Naah that guys no marxist, what game's he playing?")

This guy seemed to drift untouched from one end of the spectrum to the other.Why??

Because he was insignificant? because he was controlled, the meat in a sandwich, a patsy? because he was a brilliant actor?

Not quite as simple as it might seem. The words he and others used to describe him are open to interpretation. the different interpretation gives different meaning to events.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>



#3 John Dolva

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Posted 16 September 2005 - 05:43 PM

Greg, quite correct. He also stated in his interviews at the DPD that " . . . I never had a card to the Communist party. . . . I am a Marxist, but not a Leninist-Marxist. . . ."

Which kind of confuses the issue a bit.

In the radio interviews (2) he seems to recognise the distinction between stalinism and socialism when he talks of the various systems around. He also recognises a distinction in having marxist type policies within a capitalist world. He talks of the freedoms implicit in the US constitution and how they should be applied in recognising cubas rights of self determination.

I think he put himself in real danger when he identifies New Orleans business interests as allied with criminals.

An interesting question that I now realise I have taken too lightly. I'll mull over it for a while. More input invaluable.

John, nice work -- and right on the money... except for one not insignificant point. Oswald said he was a Marxist and NOT a Marxist-Leninist. (see transcript of NO radio debate).

I'll add Ruth Paine said in testimony that he had told her he was a Trotskyist. If he really did say it, it would be interesting. But may be even interesting would be if she was lying - and why.

Then there was Mike Paine's father, Lyman... a Trotskyist splitter.

And the riddle of the opposng leftist newspapers in the BY photo/s

Not to mention all those Trotskyists who went on to become neocons and fascists.

greg

communist socialist marxist trotskyist leninist

perhaps it's a bit bewildering making sense of these terms but as they are labels used in the context it's important to explore their meaning.

They are words used by many different groupings on the political spectrum.

Communist to a communist can mean different to that used by a JBS member for example, and then there is the proper definition which may be subtly but importantly different again.

Oswald said "I am not a Communist, I am a Marxist."

Communism is a social structure that has never existed. The proper name for the Soviet Union is Union of Socialist Soviet Republics. Socialist, not communist.

Through a period of struggle with capitalism a socialist forms workers groupings called soviets. These are connected to other soviets. Nationally they take a republican model. Globally they unite.

USSR CCCP

At some point capitalism is defeated globally. Socialism then sets about the transformation towards Communism.

A very brief history of the internationals

Marx started what is called the first international. He had trouble with swiss guilds and the second international came into being. this second international disintegrated into what now forms the back bone of the modern Labor parties of the west. Lenin and Leon Trotsky's Bolsheviks ((majority) as opposed to the Mencheviks (minority))formed the third international after the 1917 revolution. Following the revolution came a counter revolution, on the one hand, the capitalist supported white army and on the other the Trotsky led reds.

The reds won, Lenin died, famine came. Stalin. Massive across the board purges of the old Bolcheviks of whom Trotsky as the formulator of 'the permanent revolution' theory as the transition towards communism became central. Stalin went the opposite way. 'socialism in one country'.

The fourth international founded by the exiled and later assassinated Trotsky.

The word trotsky became synonymous with traitor in the third international. This is the Russia that  Oswald went to. Very unwise to call one self a Trotskyist (no Trotskyist calls him/herself trotskyITE, its an insult used by opponents or those who dont realise that context).

If one is a well read marxist then one would call oneself a socialist. Lenin and others, notably trotsky developed the practical aspects of marxism so to call oneself a marxist leninist is correct. There is argument that Lenin and Trotsky were far closer than Lenin and Stalin. so its not unreasonable to associate a marxist leninist with trotskyism. Just unwise to go to the USSR as a Trotskyist.

When the shine had gone off Uncle Joe the stalinists in the west started to suffer from their inner contradictions.

By the time of 1963 in Dallas, for Oswald to say he is not a Communist but a Marxist Leninist but not a Trotskyist smacks of opportunism, not principled dedication as one might expect to find from someone presenting himself as he tried to do. However also to call himself a marxist and not a communist is correct in the sense that a socialist works towards communism as a marxist and it would be presumptuous to take the title of communist. this label perhaps has been forced on the socialist by the opponents in thew west seeking to demonise socialism.

This is perhaps a 'purist' interpretation that's a result of involvement with the socialist workers party, but as this was one of the organisations that Oswald was connected to it might be relevant to see things from such a perspective. (Personally there are things about Oswald that would make me say "Naah that guys no marxist, what game's he playing?")

This guy seemed to drift untouched from one end of the spectrum to the other.Why??

Because he was insignificant? because he was controlled, the meat in a sandwich, a patsy? because he was a brilliant actor?

Not quite as simple as it might seem. The words he and others used to describe him are open to interpretation. the different interpretation gives different meaning to events.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>



#4 Chris Cox

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Posted 16 September 2005 - 06:47 PM

Interesting stuff. A couple sites with pix I like.

http://www.newseum.o...reinventing.htm

http://www.fbuch.com/leon.htm

http://www.historygu...e/lecture7.html

From Wikepedia:

Jaime Ramón Mercader del Río Hernández he became famous as the assassin of Stalin's great rival, Leon Trotsky

Mercader fatally wounded Trotsky with an ice axe in his study at his home in Coyoacán (then a village on the southern fringes of Mexico City). Trotsky's guards burst in and nearly killed Mercader, but their leader ordered them to spare his life, yelling "Do not kill him! This man has a story to tell."

#5 Jim Root

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Posted 16 September 2005 - 07:42 PM

John, Chris, Greg

I have found this topic interesting for a long period of time.

Reprint of a post I made on Jan. 23, 2005:

The use of the phrase "Trotskyite Communist" is interesting. As I have been rereading Agent Hosty's testimony over and over again I find more and more information. How familiar are we today with the phrase "Trotskyite Communist?"

Mr. HOSTY. Agent Gary S. Wilson. Agent Wilson was a brand new agent out of training school. And it is the custom to assign a new agent to work with an older agent for a period of 6 weeks. They work with different agents every day to observe what they are doing. This is the only reason he was with me, the only reason I had another man.

We went to the front porch. I rang the bell, talked to Mrs. Paine, at which time she advised me that Lee Oswald had been out to visit her, visit his wife, at her house over the Weekend, but she had still not determined where he was living in Dallas, and she also made the remark that she (Mrs, Paine) considered him to be a very illogical person, that he (Oswald) had told her that weekend that he was a Trotskyite Communist. Since she did not have his address, I thanked her and left.

Representative FORD. Was this comment by Mrs. Paine that Oswald had said he was a Trotskyite----

Mr. HOSTY. Trotskyite Communist was the word she used; yes, sir.

Representative FORD. Was that new as far as your knowledge of your file was concerned?

Mr. HOSTY. Well, he was a self-admitted Marxist. He had stated that earlier. The New Orleans office had reported that. He had been on television and made that statement in New Orleans, so this appeared to be in keeping with his character.

Representative FORD. The use of the word Trotskyite didn't add anything to the previous Marxist identification?

Mr. HOSTY. Well, of course, that is a particular type of Marxism, Trotskyite, the followers of Leon Trotsky's particular deviation, but this did show that he was not a member of the Communist Party USA, follower of the Leninist-Stalinist-Khrushchev movement, but would be an independent Marxist would be what it would show me, not tied in with the regular Communist Party USA.

Mr. HOSTY. Well, yes. The Socialist Workers Party is the Trotskyite Party in the United States, and they are supposedly the key element in the Fair Play for Cuba Committee, or were the key element in the Fair Play for Cuba Committee. So this would tie in with the fact that he was a member of the Fair Play for Cuba Committee, and, therefore, he claimed to be a Trotskyite this would follow.

Trotskyite Communists were associated with the Russian Left Opposition that was opposed to the Stalinist takeover of the Revolution in the Soviet Union and led to the expulsion of thousands of Russian citizens. Were members of he Russian Community in Dallas Trotskyites? (George DeMohrenschildt)

Jonathon Abt the Attorney that Oswald had defended Smith Act cases. The first Smith Act cases were intsituted against members of the Socialist Workers Party, the Trotskyist Party in the USA.

Would a "shoot down" of the U2 on May 1st 1959 advance the Trotskyist agenda against the Krushchev leadership in Russia?

The crackdown by the OPLA (Stalinist KKE Communists secrete organization) on the Trotskyite eliments of the EAM led to the US use of the Trotskyites during the Greek Civil War (1947 - 1949) against the ELAS. Edwin Walker was running the Greek Desk at the Pentagon at this time and Thomas Karamessines, (the man who would latter be receiving agent Hosty's notes in Richard Helms office before the assassination of John F. Kennedy), was leading the battle against the ELAS.

Would the assassination of JFK aid the Trotskyites goals of destablizing the govenments of both the Soviet Union and the United States?

Coincidence?

Jim Root

#6 John Dolva

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Posted 17 September 2005 - 10:22 AM

Jim, I'd like to ask you a range of different questions on your post.

Obviously by the time Hosty is answering Fords questions some time has passed. Possibly he is referring to reports that might be available? Fords question about the use of Trotskyite is probably one that aims to find out the reference to Trotsky. Hosty replying that : "Yes" she used the word Trotskyite, does reveal the fact that if she used the word Trotskyite, then she is not favourably disposed to Trotskyism, or she is ignorant of the use of the word. You might have to ask a member of the SWP on this, but as far as I know in this case -ite makes -ist an insult. Which makes me wonder what is the word that Oswald himself used? To combine it with Communist as well is very strange. I don't know any leftist who does that. "I am a Trotskyite Communist" sounds more like a filtered summary of what Oswald may have said.


"Independent Marxist" makes a whole lot more sense. This particular paragraph of Hosty's answer to Ford seems surprisingly objective, as it SHOULD be from a presumably educated FBI agent.

____________________________________________


Trotskyist goals? : To position itself as the vanguard in any future revolution.

Trotsky was a very bright intellectual and a very able leader. As the links provided by Chris show, he organised and led the Red Army in its successful defeat of the Whites. He was recognised by Lenin as the most able person to counter the destabilising influence of Stalin.

Lenins last testament : "Comrade Stalin, having become Secretary-General, has unlimited authority concentrated in his hands, and I am not sure whether he will always be capable of using that authority with sufficient caution. Comrade Trotsky, on the other hand, as his struggles against the C.C. on the question of the People's Commissariat for Communications has already proved, is distinguished not only by outstanding ability. He is personally perhaps the most capable man in the present C.C., but he has displayed excessive self-assurance and shown excessive preoccupation with the purely administrative side of the work.
.......................
Stalin is too rude and this defect, although quite tolerable in our midst and in dealing among us Communists, becomes intolerable in a Secretary-General. That is why I suggest the comrades think about a way of removing Staling from that post and appointing another man in his stead who in all other respects differs from Comrade Stalin in having only one advantage, namely, that of being more tolerant, more loyal, more polite, and more considerate to the comrades, less capricious, etc. This circumstance may appear to be a negligible detail. But I think that from the standpoint of safeguards against a split, and from the standpoint of what I wrote above about the relationship between Stalin and Trotsky, it is not a detail, or it is a detail which can assume decisive importance." And as history has shown, it did.


Following Stalins successful Putch, Trotsky in exile formed the only credible alternative and was eventually assassinated by order of Stalin. As Lenin pointed out in his last testament, Trotskys fault seemed to be that he was too trusting of procedure, this gave Stalin, the grand intriguer, an edge.

The reason I delved into that is to argue that Trotskyists, at least the SWP as member of the 4th international, doesn't see itself as having a goal of destabilising. Rather it would see these governments as inherently unstable. Their role then is to be seen as the viable alternative. This is subtly but significantly different I think.

I think that the Soviets at this point (1963) had begun the turn away from Stalin. I think Kennedy's Unifying approach of peace and reconciliation would have been seen by the SWP as a force that highlighted or amplified the contradictions inherent in the system of which they saw themselves as the vanguard opposition alternative. In other words Kennedy was himself the destabilising force. There was no need to kill him.

So where is Oswald in all this. After having re-read some of his interviews and listening to recordings of both of his radio interviews. PLUS pondered on the fist salute he gave while hand cuffed, I'm not sure at all.

More please.

#7 Chris Cox

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Posted 18 September 2005 - 09:47 PM

pretty good spy, Lee. Another digression, sorry--forgot about Priscilla with Lee; Priscilla with Svetlana A. after her New Delhi defection. coincidentallly a Spy Museum offering this month:
FREE LUNCHTIME AUTHOR DEBRIEFING AND BOOK SIGNING

What Stalin Knew: The Enigma of Barbarossa

Thursday, 22 September 2005; 12 noon – 1 pm

Why did Stalin trust Hitler? Despite the fact that Soviet intelligence knew the date, time, and location of Germany’s planned invasion of the Soviet Union, Stalin was convinced that Hitler would not attack. Former CIA chief of Soviet operations and onetime chief of the CIA’s Berlin base, David E. Murphy, plumbed the archival record to get to the bottom of the intelligence war between Stalin and Hitler. Using the stories of three intelligence officers caught up in the Soviet system, Murphy exposes Stalin’s colossal blunder, one of World War II’s greatest mysteries.



Free! No registration required! Join the author for an informal chat and book signing.

#8 Jim Root

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Posted 18 September 2005 - 10:11 PM

John

As I understand it the mission of the Cold War US intelligence community was to destabilize the Soviet government. While many look at the U-2 incident as a Soviet triumph the flip side of the coin was an admission that these overflights had been taking place for years. It also ment that Krushchevs moves to stabalize relations with the West were destabalized. The man who was working toward peacdful coexistance was suddenly working for his own existance. The Cold War would continue and there would be no more Soviet Union when the Cold War was finally ended.

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#9 John Simkin

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Posted 19 September 2005 - 08:30 AM

Great thread. Just got back from Norway and was unable to contribute earlier. It is also an important subject and have added it to the JFK Index.

I think Oswald’s political development is unconvincing. A study of his “expressed” political views was one of the main factors that convinced me that Oswald was working for the CIA or the FBI (possibly both). Although the people developing Oswald’s “political legend” had a factual understanding of the various strands of Marxism, they had no idea of the philosophical and emotional conflict that took place between the various strands within the revolutionary movement.

Apparently he joined the Young People's Socialist League and became a Marxist in 1956. He later told a friend that his involvement in politics dated back to reading a pamphlet about the execution of Ethel Rosenberg and Julius Rosenberg. This is of course possible but highly unlikely. In 1956 very few Americans were very sympathetic to the Rosenbergs. At the time it did seem that they were guilty of spying for the Soviet Union. It has to be remembered that this was the height of the Cold War and it was sometime before it was revealed that the Rosenberg’s had been set up by the FBI. Even Hoover was horrified by what he had done when Ethel Rosenberg was actually executed. He had also thought that Ethel and Julius would have named fellow members of the Communist Party in an attempt to save their lives. Of course Hoover was unable to grasp that some people really had political beliefs that were so strong they were unwilling to betray their comrades.

There were of course some decent Americans who were able to see through this Cold War propaganda and indeed became politically active as a result of this state murder. However, they tended to become active in “liberal” political organizations. It would be highly unlikely that they would become supporters of the Soviet Union who itself had a terrible record for executing political dissenters.

1956 was also the year of the Hungarian Uprising. This was a time when people were leaving the Communist Party in droves. I find it completely unbelievable that anyone developing left-wing opinions in 1956 would be attracted to the “Stalinist” American Communist Party (ACP). As William Sullivan told J. Edgar Hoover at the time, that by the late 1950s there were more FBI undercover agents in the ACP than genuine members.

It seems clear that at the time Oswald was being given a “communist” legend as part of the plan for him to defect to the Soviet Union. Oswald was one of a small group of defectors who were working as double agents. The Soviets were not fooled by these phoney “communists” (after all it was a strategy that the CIA/FBI had copied from the KGB). After a short spell they returned to the US claiming they were disillusioned by communism (Stalinism).

The problem for Oswald was that he was required by his masters to rediscover his belief in communism. It would not make any sense at all for him to become a supporter of the Soviet Union. However, it was just about feasible for Oswald to become a supporter of Fidel Castro as in the early 1960s some on the left were hoping that Castro would develop a new kind of revolutionary socialism. Castro for example had been making speeches where he had rejected Stalin’s policy of “socialism in one country” theory. This is why JFK and the CIA became so concerned about Castro. Unlike the leadership in the Soviet Union, he was passionate about the need to export revolution.

Oswald’s masters could not make-up its mind what kind of communist they wanted Oswald to be. The shrewd ones wanted to portray him as a Trotskyite supporter of Castro. However, others wanted to link him with the Soviet Union (Tim Gratz is another who is very confused by this and had attempted to portray him at various times as an agent of KGB and the Cuban Secret Service.)

The most foolish thing his masters did was to arrange for Oswald to be photographed carrying a gun and two left-wing newspapers (one Trotskyite and the other Stalinist). This attempt at planting such ridiculous incriminating evidence reveals the stupidity of those attempting to set him up.

#10 John Dolva

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Posted 19 September 2005 - 10:39 AM

In one way I'm getting more confused but on the whole the gathering of information about who Oswald was is painting an interesting picture.

Here are some impressions possibly indicative of a naiive Oswald.

I've recorded the two radio radio interviews that Lee gave in New Oeleans after his arrest there and am listening to them in a hope of furthering an understanding of who Oswald was.

It seems to me that if one can understand Lee and then contrasting that to the official versions presented then the difference could give insights to the conspiracy.

In the first interview Lee is introduced as the first person to come to prominence in New Orleans as a supporter of Cuba.

He complains about the Times-Picuane News paper as being the only one available in New Orleans and states that it is strongly anti Castro and systematically deliberately unobjective and anti-democratic. He also, in very few sentences, describes the backers of the anti Castro forces in New Orleans, naming the United Fruit co and oil interests, as thieves, liars , 'dogs', and later 'rats'.

He also identifies the federal government as being responsible for the difficulties of 'the Cuban problem' (as he calls it)

His analysis of the situation seems more sophisticated than one might think if only exposed to the commonly available information. He comes across as being alert and to the point, he displays a sense of humour, he speaks precisely and while hedging on issues such as membership he doesn't come across as an outright liar.

At this point I would speculate that had the Kennedy affair not occurred Lee could have become a significant figure in the 'Cuba problem' debate.

So far the picture I am getting is that of an intelligent man from a cultured middle-upper class family (albeit fallen on hard times). He seems to be a 'work in progress', somewhat naiive, but probably less so than many of his peers. He appears to be taking on forces that he expects to feel the same way about democracy and objectivity as he does.

If he stayed like this he seems an unlikely assassin. If he is the assassin, then something about him changed, or is not revealed here.

He seems to make a mistake here when outlining his background by not mentioning at all his time in Soviet Union but makes emphatic statements on life in the Soviet Union. This includes a statement that there is definitely no black market in food in the Soviet Union but there is a market for western clothing and other hard to get goods. This apparently balanced statement seems to confuse the issue as he has an opportunity here to say differently. (Further, I have come across a report, or I read it in a copy of a writing of his that one reason he didn't like living in the Soviet union was because there was no evening entertainment like bowling ball courts. Not exactly the sort of thing a socialist would list as an issue.)

Interestingly he calls the CIA defunct, then qualifies by saying the leadership is defunct and then qualifies this further saying Allen Dulles is defunct. However he interestingly in talking about Eisenhower and his policies uses the word 'we' in describing official government positions.


In the second radio interview he is put much more on the defensive.

In this interview the interviewer has received a bit more information about Lee. He is also confronted here in person by Ed Buffer (?) of the 'Information Council of the Americas', and Carlos Bringuer (?) a Cuban refugee who confronted Oswald on the day of his arrest.

Lee is now confronted with his travel to the Soviet Union and makes no attempt to hide it.

Interestingly he also states his aim as being to have the Federal Government normalise relations with Cuba. It would seem that at the time of the assassination he would be exposed to the sentiment that that was 'in the air'. He qualifies the problem as not being Kennedy but federal agencies. It seems a bit strange to suggets that he at his time was planning to kill Kennedy.

On the whole, he directly confronts anti Castro elements as being in league with thieves and covert ops. He differentiates between Kennedy and government agencies. He understands differences in leftist ideology. He is also clearly isolated in the interviews as being THE opposition in New Orleans to New Orleans anti-Castro forces.

He fails in being open about his time in the Soviet Union. Basically vulnerable but as far as I can see, no sign of intending to kill.

Genuine, or a carefully crafted persona? My impression is that if he was an op. he was manipulated in ways he couldn't at this point understand.

................................................
John, as a complete aside, just a thought that perhaps needs checking? Because by the sounds of it the information of this pamphlet conversion was given by this friend, with chinese whispers in mind, is it at all possible that it was a pamphlet on Rosa Luxembourg? IF so then it makes more sense. However as that is purely speculation on my part I don't mean to seed any false trails here, but would like a confirmation to the contrary.
................................................

Edited by John Dolva, 19 September 2005 - 11:05 AM.


#11 John Simkin

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Posted 19 September 2005 - 11:11 AM

John, as a complete aside, just a thought that perhaps needs checking? Because by the sounds of it the information of this pamphlet conversion was given by this friend, with chinese whispers in mind, is it at all possible that it was a pamphlet on Rosa Luxembourg? IF so then it makes more sense. However as that is purely speculation on my part I don't mean to seed any false trails here, but would like a confirmation to the contrary.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Interesting idea as Luxembourg had warned that the Bolshevik Revolution would develop into a military dictatorship like the one established by Stalin. Even if Oswald was aware of the ideas of Luxembourg, I cannot see it encouraging him to defect to the Soviet Union. However, it would explain his support of the Cuban Revolution as it clearly had the support of the majority of the Cuban people in 1959. It was the fact that the Bolsheviks did not have this "majority" support that Luxembourg initially rejected the idea of a revolution in Russia (a view shared by Trotsky until converted by Lenin in October, 1917). Luxembourg also warned against the idea of revolutions that took place during wartime.

#12 Pat Speer

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Posted 19 September 2005 - 12:08 PM

In this interview the interviewer has received a bit more information about Lee. He is also confronted here in person by Ed Buffer (?) of the 'Information Council of the Americas', and Carlos Bringuer (?) a Cuban refugee who confronted Oswald on the day of his arrest.

Lee is now confronted with his travel to the Soviet Union and makes no attempt to hide it.

Interestingly he also states his aim as being to have the Federal Government normalise relations with Cuba. It would seem that at the time of the assassination he would be exposed to the sentiment that that was 'in the air'. He qualifies the problem as not being Kennedy but federal agencies. It seems a bit strange to suggets that he at his time was planning to kill Kennedy.

................................................

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


I believe the man from INCA's name was Ed Butler. What's always impressed me about these interviews is the way Oswald makes a strong case for Cuba only to be derailed at the last second with the exposure that he'd defected to Russia. As I recall this information became available to the interviewer only after a convenient call from the FBI. I'm not sure if anyone's ever been able to figure out exactly which agent it was. It would be interesting though if it were Quigley, whom Oswald had spoken with after getting arrested. Anyhow, the whole thing smells of a plot to discredit the Fair Play For Cuba Committee in NO, a plot that worked, by the way.

#13 John Simkin

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Posted 19 September 2005 - 12:22 PM

Extract from the transcript of the debate that took place on the Bill Slatter's radio show Conversation Carte Blanche in 1963.

Lee Harvey Oswald: The principals of thought of the Fair Play for Cuba consist of restoration of diplomatic trade and tourist relations with Cuba. That is one of our main points. We are for that. I disagree that this situation regarding American-Cuban relations is very unpopular. We are in the minority surely. We are not particularly interested in what Cuban exiles or rightists members of rightist organizations have to say. We are primarily interested in the attitude of the US government toward Cuba. And in that way we are striving to get the United States to adopt measures which would be more friendly toward the Cuban people and the new Cuban regime in that country. We are not all communist controlled regardless of the fact that I have the experience of living in Russia, regardless of the fact that we have been investigated, regardless of those facts, the Fair Play for Cuba Committee is an independent organization not affiliated with any other organization. Our aims and our ideals are very clear and in the best keeping with American traditions of democracy.

Carlos Bringuier: Do you agree with Fidel Castro when in his last speech of July 26th of this year he qualified President John F. Kennedy of the United States as a ruffian and a thief? Do you agree with Mr. Castro?

Lee Harvey Oswald: I would not agree with that particular wording. However, I and the Fair Play for Cuba Committee do think that the United States Government through certain agencies, mainly the State Department and the C.I.A., has made monumental mistakes in its relations with Cuba. Mistakes which are pushing Cuba into the sphere of activity of let's say a very dogmatic communist country such as China.

Bill Slatter: Mr. Oswald would you agree that when Castro first took power - would you agree that the United States was very friendly with Castro, that the people of this country had nothing but admiration for him, that they were very glad to see Batista thrown out?

Lee Harvey Oswald: I would say that the activities of the United States government in regards to Batista were a manifestation of not so much support for Fidel Castro but rather a withdrawal of support from Batista. In other words we stopped armaments to Batista. What we should have been done was to take those armaments and drop them into the Sierra Maestra where Fidel Castro could have used them. As for public sentiment at that time, I think even before the revolution, there were rumblings of official comment and so forth from government officials er, against Fidel Castro.

Ed Butler: You've never been to Cuba, of course, but why are the people of Cuba starving today?

Lee Harvey Oswald: Well any country emerging from a semi-colonial state and embarking upon reforms which require a diversification of agriculture you are going to have shortages. After all 80% of imports into the United States from Cuba were two products, tobacco and sugar. Nowadays, while Cuba is reducing its production as far as sugar cane goes it is striving to grow unlimited, and unheard of for Cuba, quantities of certain vegetables such as sweet potatoes, lima beans, cotton, and so forth, so that they can become agriculturally independent ...

Ed Butler: Gentlemen I'm going to have to interrupt you. Our time is almost up. We've had three guests tonight on Conversation Carte Blanche, Bill Stuckey and I have been talking to Lee Harvey Oswald, Secretary of the New Orleans Chapter of the Fair Play for Cuba Committee, Ed Butler, Executive Vice-president of the Information Council of the Americas (INCA) and Carlos Bringuier, Cuban refugee. Thank you very much.

#14 Jim Root

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Posted 19 September 2005 - 06:01 PM

John

I might disagree with you a bit about Oswalds America in the 1956/1957 period.

"I think Oswald’s political development is unconvincing. A study of his “expressed” political views was one of the main factors that convinced me that Oswald was working for the CIA or the FBI (possibly both). Although the people developing Oswald’s “political legend” had a factual understanding of the various strands of Marxism, they had no idea of the philosophical and emotional conflict that took place between the various strands within the revolutionary movement.

This is one of things that bothers me about the backyard photos. If real, you have either a person who is very confused or a very sophisticated person that is displaying the two magazines along with two weapons. Is this a picture that displays an understanding of the conflicts or a misunderstanding of the conflicts? I believe that it is as possible to be an understanding as it is possible for it to be a display of misunderstanding. Of course, if conspirators exist, they would want the public to believe it is a display of misunderstanding.

Since the pictures were (supposedly) taken in the days preceding the assassination attempt on Walker what you may be viewing is the picture of a man that believes he has been used to further the divide between these two organizations and is in fact angry about it. Perhaps angry enough to kill. But then again the pictures would display an understanding of the conflicts.

Apparently he joined the Young People's Socialist League and became a Marxist in 1956. He later told a friend that his involvement in politics dated back to reading a pamphlet about the execution of Ethel Rosenberg and Julius Rosenberg. This is of course possible but highly unlikely. "

Why is it highly unlikely. Oswald was living in a nightmere existance. In the previous three years he has moved repeatedly, droped out of schools more than one, held and lost several jobs, been put in an institution for juvenal delinguents. And lived with a mother that he believed was being exploited. Rather than "highly unlikely" I would find a somewhat intelligent disenchated youth very attracted to a system that suggested that you could improve yourself based upon your abilities not your social status. That the workers of America were exploited by the rich and held down by the oppressors would be an attractive explanaiton for the conflict that Oswald lived within. These things would seem very real in the world that Oswald was experiencing.

"1956 was also the year of the Hungarian Uprising. This was a time when people were leaving the Communist Party in droves. I find it completely unbelievable that anyone developing left-wing opinions in 1956 would be attracted to the “Stalinist” American Communist Party (ACP)"

The Hungarian Uprising was far far away while the stories of a repressive Batista regime supported by the rich landholders in Cuba would be a more relavent story to a kid in New York and New Orleans at that time. Battling repression and for the rights of the underdog seems to fit well with a disenchanted adolesent!

John, Oswald, repeatedly called himself a Trotskyist and seemed to not be a person interested in the "Stalinist" movement whatsoever. Oswald had problems with both systems of government (Soviet and US) as stated during the Spring Hill presentation.

I will agree that Oswald may have been used by a US intelligence organization (I now believe the NSA is a likely suspect). But the NSA, like any great artist who creates a statue from a shapless piece of marble, would first begin with a formless block of rock that comes complete with the inperfections hidden within. The marble does not change its material makeup. But the blocks form can be changed by the craftsman into a masterpiece use beauty can only be appreciated by those who view it.

I view Oswald as an intelligent human being that may well have been used by the forces that were engaged in the worldwide power struggle known as the Cold War. I believe that he may have "slipped" into this world by the chance coincidence that he wrote a letter to an organization that had only recently started to be monitored by the CIA. I also hold open the possibility that as he grew in his experiences (think about what this man did in the few years that he lived) he began to understand many ugly realities. He may well have had need for different identities and different mail drops because he knew he was being watched (which he was). At 22 he may have had a grater understanding of the world of espionage than most. Perhaps all his knowledge came not from formal training but from on the job training.

Jim Root

Perhaps some in the intelligence community greatly underestimated him, perhaps not.

Jim Root

#15 John Dolva

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Posted 19 September 2005 - 10:56 PM

I am wondering where Marina fits into this. Assuming some degree of involvement with intelligence agencies by Lee. Does it not seem strange that he would marry, have children with and who then accompanies him back to the United States.

If he was a person meant to go to the USSR to come back and then say negative things about the USSR, doesn't a wife implicitly deny this. At least there are some nice women in Communist countries?

How could he if he is an agent also marry someone whom he had known for 3 odd months, and then bring this 'unknown quantity ' back to the US? Further, there seems to be no real control exerted on Marina by Oswald once back in the US. She is left to associate as she wishes. IE.: unknown quantity: freedom. Could be seen as sloppy agent (or outside real control), not agent at all, or some other reason at work?

I am wondering how thoughts such as these are reconciled?




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