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30 Watergate Deaths

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Interesting article by Malcolm Abrahams, 30 Watergate Witnesses Have Met Violent Deaths (July 12, 1976). I am especially interested in information on the following: Lou Russell, Beverly Kaye and Lee Pennington, Jr. Has anyone got any information of these people?

The CIA is behind it all. That's the conclusion of Mae Brussell - one of America's foremost assassination experts - a researcher who has collected every pertinent newspaper story, every book, every document since the Watergate break-in four years ago on the night of June 17, 1972.

Miss Brussell is the only person in America who perceived the gruesome string of deaths that stretches from Watergate to now.

She believes that a faction within the Central Intelligence Agency is responsible not only for Watergate, but for the assassinations of John and Robert Kennedy.

She believes, as President Nixon stated on the Watergate tapes, that everything horrible that's happened in American politics is connected, starting with the Bay of Pigs.

Some of the 30 people who died, she says, knew only about CIA involvement in Watergate. Some of them knew much, much more.

A few of the dead, like Martha Mitchell, Lyndon Johnson, Congressman Hale Boggs and Mafia hoodlum Sam Giancana, are well-known. Others might have been - if they had lived and told their stories. But 30 are dead. And there's no reason to believe that there won't be more.

1. Beverly Kaye, 42, died of a "massive stroke" in December, 1973, while riding in the White House elevator. She was Secret Service agent John Bull's secretary and her job included the actual storing and preservation of the White House tapes. It is almost without question, says Mae Brussell, that she knew what was on those tapes, including the 18 minutes of recorded conversations which were mysteriously erased. As reported in the West Coast news service, "Earth News," on June 5, 1974, from the stories she told her friends and neighbors, she was convinced that the president and his aides were involved in the Watergate bugging and cover-up.

2. Murray Chotiner, a long-time friend of Nixon's was killed when a government truck ran into his car on January 23, 1974. At first it was reported that Chotiner suffered only a broken leg, but he died a week later. According to a March 31, 1973 article in the Los Angeles Times, Chotiner may have been one of the people who received the tape recordings made inside the Democratic campaign headquarters in the Watergate building.

3. William Mills, the Congressman from Maryland, was found shot to death - an apparent suicide - one day after it was disclosed that he failed to report a $25,000 campaign contribution given to him by President Nixon's re-election finance committee. Mills, 48, was discovered with a 12-gauge shotgun by his feet and an "alleged suicide note" pinned to his body. In all, seven such notes were found, apparently written by Mills, although this was never verified. According to Miss Brussell, the $25,000 came from the $1.7 million dollar secret fund for "dirty tricks" used by the Committee to Re-Elect the President.

4. and 5. James Webster and James Glover, key men in Congressman Mills' campaign, were killed in a car accident in February of 1972. Another campaign worker stated in the Washington Post on May 23, 1973, that the illegal $25,000 contribution was delivered to Mills' campaign manager James Webster.

6. Hale Boggs, the Congressman from Louisiana and a member of the Warren Commission, died in July of 1972, one month after the Watergate arrests. Boggs and two other men disappeared when the light aircraft in which they were flying crashed in Alaska. The Los Angeles Star, on November 22, 1973, reported that "Boggs had startling revelations on Watergate and the assassination of President Kennedy." Richard Nixon made some unintelligible remarks about Congressman Boggs which were recorded on the White House tapes, just seven days after the Watergate break-in.

7. Dorothy Hunt, the wife of convicted White House "plumber" E. Howard Hunt, was killed, along with 41 other people, when United Airlines Flight 553 crashed near Chicago's Midway Airport on Dec. 8, 1972. Mrs. Hunt, who, like her husband, had worked for the CIA, was allegedly carrying $100,000 in "hush" money so her husband would not implicate White House officials in Watergate. The day after the crash, White House aide Egil (Bud) Krogh was appointed Undersecretary of Transportation, supervising the National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Association - the two agencies charged with investigating the airline crash. A week later, Nixon's deputy assistant Alexander Butterfield was made the new head of the FAA, and five weeks later Dwight Chapin, the president's appointment secretary, was dispatched to Chicago to become a top executive with United Airlines. The airplane crash was blamed on equipment malfunctions.

8. and 9. Ralph Blodgett and James Krueger, attorneys for Northern Natural Gas Co., were killed in the same airplane as Mrs. Hunt. The two men, Miss Brussell contends, had documents linking Attorney General John Mitchell to Watergate, and documents of a secret transfer of El Paso Natural Gas Co. stock made to Mitchell after the Justice Department dropped a $300 million anti-trust suit against the company. The money from these stocks may have been used for political espionage. Blodgett told friends before boarding the plane in Washington that he would "never live to get to Chicago."

10. and 11. Dr. and Mrs. Gary Morris died in March of 1972 when their boat mysteriously disappeared off the Caribbean Island of St. Lucia. Their bodies were never found. But their names were on the dead body of Mrs. Dorothy Hunt, according to an article in the Oct. 3, 1975 Washington Post. "The plane crash that killed Mrs. Hunt in Chicago has now been officially ruled an accident," the story stated. "But there's one bizarre coincidence that may never be explained. "Her red wallet at the time of her death had a slip of paper with the name of a Washington psychiatrist, Dr. Gary Morris, on it." Neither Howard Hunt nor his wife were patients of the doctor, who was already dead at the time of the plane crash. It is interesting to note, Mae Brussell says, that Dr. Morris was an expert in hypnosis and that Mr. Hunt used "mind control" in his espionage work.

12. J. Edgar Hoover, head of the FBI, died on May 1, 1972, a month before Watergate. There is considerable evidence that he may have known about the White House "dirty tricks." An article in the Harvard Crimson quotes Felipe De Diego, a Cuban exile who took part in the break-in at psychiatrist Daniel Ellsberg's office, as saying: "Two burglaries took place at Hoover's Washington home. The first was in the winter of 1972 to retrieve documents that might be used for blackmail against the White House. "After the first burglary," according to Diego, "a second burglary was carried out; this time, whether by design or misunderstanding, a poison, thyonphosphate genre, was placed in Hoover's personal toilet articles. Hoover died shortly after that." Thyonphosphate genre is a drug that induces heart seizures. Its presence in a corpse is undetectable without an autopsy. No autopsy was ever performed on the body of J. Edgar Hoover.

13. Sam Giancana, the Mafia chief, was murdered on June 22, 1975, as he was about to testify before Sen. Frank Church's Senate Committee, investigating the use of underworld figures by the CIA, for the purpose of assassinating foreign leaders. Giancana had ties to E. Howard Hunt and the CIA. His murder is unsolved, although police say "it didn't look like a Mafia hit." His former girlfriend, Judith Campbell Exner recently revealed her secret romance with JFK.

14. Lyndon Baines Johnson, the former president, died on January 20, 1973, in a helicopter ambulance en route to San Antonio, Texas. Three months before his death, Johnson was quoted in the San Francisco Chronicle as saying, "We've been running a damn Murder Inc. in the Caribbean." This was two years before Sen. Church's committee revealed the plots to assassinate foreign leaders. "Coincidentally," Mae Brussell says, "Johnson died in the arms of a secret service agent Mike Howard, who in 1963 had been assigned to protect Marina Oswald after her husband was killed."

15. George Bell, assistant to Charles Colson, special counsel to the White House, died of unreported causes on June 30, 1973. When questioned about President Nixon's infamous "enemies list," Colson told the House Subcommittee Investigating Watergate that the "late George Bell" was responsible for the list of 200 celebrities and politicians whom the President considered dangerous.

16. Lee Pennington, Jr., a CIA agent, died of an apparent heart attack in October of 1974. Immediately after the Watergate arrests two years earlier, he had been sent to ransack burglar James McCord's home. Richard Helms, the CIA chief at the time, did not reveal this fact to any investigators. It was not until June 28, 1974, four months before Pennington's death, that the new CIA director, William Colby, reported to Sen. Howard Baker: "The results of our investigation clearly show that the CIA had in its possession, as early as June, 1972, information that one of its paid operatives, Lee R. Pennington, Jr., had entered the James McCord residence shortly after the Watergate break-in and destroyed documents which might show a link between McCord and the CIA."

17. J. Clifford Dieterich, a 28-year-old secret service agent assigned to Nixon, was killed when the president's helicopter crashed off the Bahamas in May of 1973. Dieterich was one of seven men in the helicopter, but the only one to die. Miss Brussell believes that in guarding Richard Nixon, he may have come to know too much.

18. Clay Shaw, who years earlier had been acquitted of conspiracy to kill John F. Kennedy, died of a heart attack, on August 16, 1974. His death came just weeks after Victor Marchetti, author of "The Cult of Intelligence," revealed that Shaw had worked for the CIA. He had been on assignment in Mexico in 1963 at the same time as CIA agent E. Howard Hunt and Lee Harvey Oswald. Shaw was cremated. There was no autopsy.

19. Merle D. Baumgart, an aide to Rep. Peter Rodino of the House Judiciary Committee on Impeachment, was killed in a traffic accident on May 20, 1975. Washington police described his death as "a routine traffic accident" - until they received an anonymous call to "look into it." According to the Portland Oregonian of June 30, 1975, U.S. agents joined the probe but kept it secret because of the "stature of some individuals who might be involved."

Miss Brussell speculates that in his work to impeach Nixon, Baumgart may have come across some dangerous information.

20. Nikos J. Vardinoyiannis, a Greek shipowner who contributed funds to Nixon's presidential campaign, died of undisclosed causes in 1973. Watergate prosecutor Leon Jaworski was investigating Vardinoyiannis when the Justice Department declared that the Greek's contribution of $27,000 was not illegal. The Department reached this conclusion, Mae Brussell says, even though the contribution was made after one of Vardinoyiannis' companies was contracted to supply fuel for the U.S. 6th Fleet, and even though federal law bars foreign contractors from contributing to U.S. political campaigns.

21. Joseph Tomassi, the 24-year-old head of the American Nazi Party in California was shot to death on the front steps of his Los Angeles headquarters, on August 15, 1975. Two years earlier, the Los Angeles Times had reported that "the Committee to Re-Elect the President gave $10,000 in undisclosed funds to finance a surreptitious campaign to remove George Wallace's American Independent Party from the 1972 California ballot."

The Times went on to say that "$1,200 of the fund found its way to Joe Tomassi, head of the Nazi Party in California."

22. Mrs. Louise Boyer, Nelson Rockefeller's assistant for 30 years, fell to her death from a 10th story New York apartment on July 3, 1974. At the time, as a consequence of Watergate, Rockefeller was being considered for the vice-presidency. Accusations had been made that he had been involved in the illegal removal of gold from Ft. Knox. It's believed that Mrs. Boyer supplied the investigators with this information.

23. Jose Joaquin Sangenis Perdimo, a Cuban exile who worked with the CIA at the Bay of Pigs, died mysteriously in 1974. Code-named "Felix," he had worked with Watergate plummers Hunt and Barker. In 1972 he was awarded a secret merit medal by the CIA.

24. Rolando Masferrer, another Cuban exile employed by the CIA, was blown blown to bits when his car exploded on October 5, 1975. Masferrer had worked with "plummers" Hunt, Sturgis and Barker. According to Miss Brussell, "He would have been investigated for his activities in connection with assassination attempts on foreign leaders, had he not been killed."

25. Lou Russell, an old friend of Nixon's from the "Red Scare" days, died of natural causes on July 31, 1973. In testimony before the Senate Select Committee on Presidential Campaign Activities, Nixon's secretary Rosemary Wood stated: "I met Lou Russell once when he came to the office. He said he worked on the old House Un-American Activity Committee and that he needed a job." Russell found a job alright, with "McCord Associates," a CIA front run by Watergater James McCord.

26. Jack Cleveland, a partner of the president's brother Donald Nixon, died in Canada in November of 1973. At the time he was wanted for questioning in connection with a possible government pay-off to Howard Hughes. Cleveland was suspected of being a go-between in a deal whereby Nixon's brother gained an interest in a large Nevada ranch allegedly in exchange for the president's clearing the way for the billionaire's takeover of Air West.

"When Watergate came apart," Miss Brussell says, "this deal came under investigation."

27. Richard Lavoie, chief of security for International Telegraph and Telephone, died of a heart attack on December 27, 1972. At the time Lavoie was guarding Ditta Beard, an ITT secretary who claimed she had a memo that her company had contributed $400,000 to Nixon's campaign fund so that John Mitchell would not bust up some of ITT's holdings. When columnist Jack Anderson broke this story, Miss Beard was moved from Washington to Denver, Colo., where she was hospitalized for an apparent heart attack. She was whisked away, Anderson claimed, so that she couldn't testify. Miss Brussell suspects that Lovoie may have heard too much from Dita Beard.

28. Mrs. Andrew Topping, the wife of a man arrested for plotting to kill Nixon, died of gunshot wounds on April 6, 1972, two weeks after the Watergate break-in. Her death was declared a suicide. Andrew Topping told police that "pro-rightist forces" beyond his control caused his wife's death.

29. James Morton was President Gerald Ford's campaign treasurer. According to a New York Times report of November 2, 1973, Ford was being questioned by a senate committee prior to his appointment as vice president, and was asked about a secret sum of $38,000 used in his campaign for the House of Representatives. The Times story stated, "Ford confirmed under questioning that a committee organized in Washington raised $38,216 for his re-election in 1972... but Ford said he did not know the names of the donors because the committee treasurer, James G. Morton is now dead." Like so much of the Watergate money, Miss Brussell notes, no records were kept.

30. Martha Mitchell, estranged wife of the former attorney general, died on Memorial Day, 1976. A constant "pain in the side" of the Watergate conspirators, she was the first person to point the finger at Richard Nixon and suggest he resign.

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Interesting article by Malcolm Abrahams, 30 Watergate Witnesses Have Met Violent Deaths (July 12, 1976). I am especially interested in information on the following: Lou Russell, Beverly Kaye and Lee Pennington, Jr. Has anyone got any information of these people?

John:

You are probably already aware of Jim Hougan's "Secret Agenda: Watergate, Deep Throat and the CIA", which contains quite a bit on Russell and also info on Pennington.

I don't know if I've published it in this forum, but I purchased a used copy of an old 1955 book on espionage, and when I opened it, I saw the stamp "Lee Pennington" on the right frontspiece, and a pencilled "Lou Russell" on the left frontspiece. I emailed this to Hougan, who thought it was interesting. Kinda chilling, to have a book once owned by one or more spooks!

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Sorry to direct the thread away from its purpose here.

It mentions that Clay Shaw was in Mexico City at the same time as Howard Hunt and Oswald. This is the first I have heard of this, does anybody have any information or a source for this?

John

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Interesting article by Malcolm Abrahams, 30 Watergate Witnesses Have Met Violent Deaths (July 12, 1976). I am especially interested in information on the following: Lou Russell, Beverly Kaye and Lee Pennington, Jr. Has anyone got any information of these people?

John:

This originally appeared in a rather shabby tabloid called Midnight.  That doesn't necessarily make all the information wrong, but I can assure you the fact-checkers at TV Guide are more thorough than were those at Midnight.

Case in point:

23. Jose Joaquin Sangenis Perdimo, a Cuban exile who worked with the CIA at the Bay of Pigs, died mysteriously in 1974. Code-named "Felix," he had worked with Watergate plummers Hunt and Barker. In 1972 he was awarded a secret merit medal by the CIA.

In a January 1975 article in the Miami Times on various Cuban exiles paid by CIA who had spied inside the US on persons including US citizens, it noted:

A mysterious exile, who died here a year ago at the age of 61, was in charge of the Cuban counterintelligence office. His former associates say the exile, Jose Joaquin Sangenis Perdomo, was following orders of his CIA "case officer," whose code name, they said, was Felix.

There is only one letter different in the last names, but even one letter's difference creates distinctions as though between two people.  [Which leads me to note that Jose Perdomo was also the name of the Dakota doorman on duty the night that John Lennon was assassinated.] 

And, by the by, Midnight states "Perdimo" answered to the CIA code-name "Felix," whereas the Miami Times notes that "Perdomo" was answerable to another CIA man code-named "Felix."  "Watergate plummers," indeed.

I do not hold Mae Brussell accountable for the Midnight errors, but, as always, let the consumer beware the contents of tabloids. 

I have one tab from 1964 called "Uncensored" that posits Kennedy was assassinated on the orders of Fidel Castro.  The article is quite well written, but filled with howlingly funny nose-stretchers, falsifications, mis-statements of fact, comments completely contradicted by the known evidence then, and now, etc.  Forty one years later, there is nothing more compelling to bolster that silly notion.  If there were, Tim Gratz would presumably have cited it by now.  Presumably. 

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This originally appeared in a rather shabby tabloid called Midnight.  That doesn't necessarily make all the information wrong, but I can assure you the fact-checkers at TV Guide are more thorough than were those at Midnight.

Case in point: [/color]

23. Jose Joaquin Sangenis Perdimo, a Cuban exile who worked with the CIA at the Bay of Pigs, died mysteriously in 1974. Code-named "Felix," he had worked with Watergate plummers Hunt and Barker. In 1972 he was awarded a secret merit medal by the CIA.

In a January 1975 article in the Miami Times on various Cuban exiles paid by CIA who had spied inside the US on persons including US citizens, it noted:

A mysterious exile, who died here a year ago at the age of 61, was in charge of the Cuban counterintelligence office. His former associates say the exile, Jose Joaquin Sangenis Perdomo, was following orders of his CIA "case officer," whose code name, they said, was Felix.

There is only one letter different in the last names, but even one letter's difference creates distinctions as though between two people.  [Which leads me to note that Jose Perdomo was also the name of the Dakota doorman on duty the night that John Lennon was assassinated.] 

Robert,

According to the article linked below, this Perdomo was the same man who was the Dakota doorman and may have been Lennon's actual assassin.

According to the article, Hinckle and Turner in The Fish Is Red say Perdomo died in 1974, but their only source for this was Frank Sturgis. (Lennon was assassinated in 1980.) I have the later version of the book (Deadly Secrets), and Perdomo is not in the index, which suggests that he and the year of his alleged death have been deleted from the book.

http://www.jfkmontreal.com/john_lennon/Usenet/Perdomo.htm

Ron

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Per John, a man named Malcolm Abrahams wrote (on July 12, 1976):

A few of the dead, like Martha Mitchell, Lyndon Johnson, Congressman Hale Boggs and Mafia hoodlum Sam Giancana, are well-known. Others might have been - if they had lived and told their stories. But 30 are dead. And there's no reason to believe that there won't be more.

Not quite sure why Giancana is on this list. But if he is properly on the list, then Abrahams was prescient since Sam's pal Johnny Rosselli was murdered sixteen days after Abrhams' column appeared.

Rosselli had testified before investigators for the Watergate Committee. Although I doubt a direct connection between the Kennedy assassination and Watergate, it was the Watergate investigation that led to the Church Committee and the revelation of the CIA/Mafia plots against Castro. The Church Committee led inexorably to the HSCA.

Edited by Tim Gratz

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Robert,

According to the article linked below, this Perdomo was the same man who was the Dakota doorman and may have been Lennon's actual assassin.

According to the article, Hinckle and Turner in The Fish Is Red say Perdomo died in 1974, but their only source for this was Frank Sturgis. (Lennon was assassinated in 1980.) I have the later version of the book (Deadly Secrets), and Perdomo is not in the index, which suggests that he and the year of his alleged death have been deleted from the book.

http://www.jfkmontreal.com/john_lennon/Usenet/Perdomo.htm

Ron

I believe Sturgis was reporting to both Barker and a Sanjenis. Same guy? Remember, Sturgis told the Church Committee he'd been approached by the CIA to commit assassinations on U.S. soil. I'd assumed this was Barker. Maybe there's something to this Sanjenis...

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Robert,

According to the article linked below, this Perdomo was the same man who was the Dakota doorman and may have been Lennon's actual assassin.

Oh, I'm well familiar with Senor Astucia's site, Ron.  And while I'm agnostic on the above contention, some of his other "deductions" are so fantastically bizarre [and riddled with a pathological anti-Semitism], that one places credence in his assertions at one's own peril.

According to the article, Hinckle and Turner in The Fish Is Red say Perdomo died in 1974, but their only source for this was Frank Sturgis. (Lennon was assassinated in 1980.) I have the later version of the book (Deadly Secrets), and Perdomo is not in the index, which suggests that he and the year of his alleged death have been deleted from the book.

Well, yes, but the Miami News article I cited, written in '75, also reports Perdomo's death the prior year.  Presumably, the Miami News staff was capable of checking its own obituary files from the preceding year to determine if Miami resident Perdomo had, in fact, died when claimed.  Certainly, the article reported on an event of such great magnitude that so elementary a fact would have been double checked.  For more, please see:

www.latinamericanstudies.org/belligerence/cia-spies.htm

http://www.jfkmontreal.com/john_lennon/Usenet/Perdomo.htm

Ron

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Guest John Gillespie

John,

Greetings. I am adding the names John Leon and and John Paisley - both very significant, I believe - to the list, if I may. Leon's death followed Russell's by about ten days (another heart attack; this one on the eve of a press conference and after collaboration with a certain George H.W. Bush) and reading about it in Jim Hougan's masterwork "Secret Agenda..." literally gave me the creeps - pun intended, as usual.

This from the Tarpley site on Russell, which references Leon: "I think Russell had also worked directly for the CREEP as a night watchman. Russell had also worked for John Leon of Allied Investigators, Inc., a company that later went to work for George Bush and the Republican National Committee. Still later, Russell found a job with the headquarters of the McGovern for President campaign. Russell's lawyer was Bud Fensterwald, and sometimes Russell performed investigative services for Fensterwald and for Fensterwald's Committee to Investigate Assassinations. In September, 1972, well after the scandal had become notorious, Russell seems to have joined with one Nick Beltrante in carrying out electronic countermeasures sweeps of the DNC headquarters, and during one of these he appears to have planted an electronic eavesdropping device in the phone of DNC worker Spencer Oliver which, when it was discovered, re-focused public attention on the Watergate scandal at the end of the summer of 1972. " And there's that guy Fensterwald again...worth an entire site.

John Paisley's demise was both scary and fascinating. Hougan put the story - and Paisley's background - into an appendix to "Secret Agenda....", most notable as one of the many sections of this great work that addresses how "Watergate" still impinges upon things of which we know and others we don't and probably won't. Paisley was CIA Liaison to the Plumbers, was likely to be handling any data sent back to the US from LHO and was a member, along with Carl Bernstein and various CIA Officers, of a private D.C. area "social club" also frequented by a D.C. pimp named riggin with whom Bernstein had an acquaintance. Impinges indeed. Gee, I like that word.

Fun Weekend To Everyone. Take your break-ins one at a time.

Regards, JAG

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Guest John Gillespie

From Stephen:

"You are probably already aware of Jim Hougan's "Secret Agenda: Watergate, Deep Throat and the CIA", which contains quite a bit on Russell and also info on Pennington.

I don't know if I've published it in this forum, but I purchased a used copy of an old 1955 book on espionage, and when I opened it, I saw the stamp "Lee Pennington" on the right frontspiece, and a pencilled "Lou Russell" on the left frontspiece. I emailed this to Hougan, who thought it was interesting. Kinda chilling, to have a book once owned by one or more spooks!

"

From John:

"Sorry to direct the thread away from its purpose here.

It mentions that Clay Shaw was in Mexico City at the same time as Howard Hunt and Oswald. This is the first I have heard of this, does anybody have any information or a source for this?"

Guys,

Thanks for these and so many other postings. Nearly every time I read something of yours (pl.) I find it informative if not fascinating. In Hougan's book there are two places where he mentions (damn, I wish he would have elaborated) the smuggling of gold bullion to Southeast Asia, the first with respect to Pennington in the middle of the book and the second at the end of the final chapter. The latter segment tells of Haig's initiation of a CIC investigation into that activity - and Nixon's involvement - this time without mentioning Pennington. It's Hougan's contention there that this is what forced Nixon's hand into resignation. Let's take the lad out for drinks and dinner!

That '55 book on espionage is a real find.

Regards, JAG

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Greetings.  I am adding the names John Leon and and John Paisley - both very significant, I believe - to the list, if I may.  Leon's death followed Russell's by about ten days (another heart attack; this one on the eve of a press conference and after collaboration with a certain George H.W. Bush) and reading about it in Jim Hougan's masterwork "Secret Agenda..." literally gave me the creeps - pun intended, as usual. 

This from the Tarpley site on Russell, which references Leon: "I think Russell had also worked directly for the CREEP as a night watchman. Russell had also worked for John Leon of Allied Investigators, Inc., a company that later went to work for George Bush and the Republican National Committee. Still later, Russell found a job with the headquarters of the McGovern for President campaign. Russell's lawyer was Bud Fensterwald, and sometimes Russell performed investigative services for Fensterwald and for Fensterwald's Committee to Investigate Assassinations. In September, 1972, well after the scandal had become notorious, Russell seems to have joined with one Nick Beltrante in carrying out electronic countermeasures sweeps of the DNC headquarters, and during one of these he appears to have planted an electronic eavesdropping device in the phone of DNC worker Spencer Oliver which, when it was discovered, re-focused public attention on the Watergate scandal at the end of the summer of 1972. " And there's that guy Fensterwald again...worth an entire site.

John Paisley's demise was both scary and fascinating. Hougan put the story - and Paisley's background - into an appendix to "Secret Agenda....", most notable as one of the many sections of this great work that addresses how "Watergate" still impinges upon things of which we know and others we don't and probably won't. Paisley was CIA Liaison to the Plumbers, was likely to be handling any data sent back to the US from LHO and was a member, along with Carl Bernstein and various CIA Officers, of a private D.C. area "social club" also frequented by a D.C. pimp named riggin with whom Bernstein had an acquaintance. Impinges indeed. Gee, I like that word.

Great posting.

I did not know that John Leon died as well at this time. I am sure the John Paisley death is connected. Also the death of Lee R. Pennington (also of a heart-attack). I will start a new thread on Paisley.

I am sure Fensterwald was CIA. I suspect his role was like that of Dick Billings. It was an attempt to keep tabs on the investigation. I expect he was doing the same thing with Watergate. I will also start a thread on Fensterwald (I know Pat Speer is a fan of his).

What do you know about Carmine Bellino and William Birely? See my postings here:

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/index.php?showtopic=4487

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/index.php?showtopic=4547

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I am sure Fensterwald was CIA. I suspect his role was like that of Dick Billings. It was an attempt to keep tabs on the investigation. I expect he was doing the same thing with Watergate. I will also start a thread on Fensterwald (I know Pat Speer is a fan of his).

John,

According to Robert Morrow, FWIW, Bud Fensterwald was another suspicious death. On page 300 of his book First Hand Knowlege, Morrow wrote that Gus Russo had been interviewing a former Air Force Colonel in Florida whom Morrow had identified as "a possible CIA bag-man in the (JFK) conspiracy." Russo felt that "the man was ready to talk about the assassination," and based on this assessment Fensterwald was planning to go to Florida and interview the Colonel. Morrow warned both Russo and Fensterwald that Fensterwald would be killed if he tried to interview the man. Russo believed him, but Fensterwald laughed it off and asked Morrow to set up a luncheon date with the Colonel. Morrow set up the luncheon for April 11, 1991. "Just days before I was to meet Bud," Morrow says, "I received a call from Bud's secretary that he had died the previous night. Before I could do anything, Bud's body was cremated and an autopsy had not been performed."

Who was the Air Force Colonel in Florida whom Fensterwald was dying to interview? Morrow doesn't name him in the book, but says he was "a good friend and former business associate of Col. Howard Burris," who was LBJ's military aide.

In a 1999 Probe article entitled "Who Is Gus Russo?", Jim DiEugenio says that Russo and John Newman gave a talk at the 1992 ASK conference, and though DiEugenio didn't attend the presentation he heard that Russo's part "centered on some aspects of military intelligence dealing with the assassination. Specifically it concerned Air Force Colonel Delk Simpson, an aquaintance of both LBJ military aide Howard Burris and CIA officer David Atlee Phillips, about whom some significant questions had been raised."

I checked the index of Russo's book Live by the Sword, and found no references to Simpson or Fensterwald, and only one to Morrow, relating to the Cuban exile Mario Kohly.

I found nothing on Delk Simpson in Walt Brown’s Global Index, but the Mary Ferrell Database lists him as O’Wighton Delk Simpson, 1208 Marine Way, Apt. 701-A, North Palm Beach, Florida 33408, date of birth 8/27/11.

He was in the Air Force from 1942 to 1961, “attained rank of Colonel in 1945 (not promoted in 16 years – invited to retire).” From 1948 to 1950 he was Chief of Intelligence, 5th Air Force, Japan. 1959-1961, Special Assistant to Commander-in-Chief Samuel E. Anderson, Air Material Command, Dayton, Ohio. 1961-63, “in charge of industrial intelligence for Martin Aerospace (traveled throughout Europe, headquartered in Paris).” 1963-66, on Washington staff of Martin Marietta Corp.

Ferrell states, “His son, O’Wighton Delk Simpson, Jr., died ‘under suspicious circumstances’ Dec. 31, 1982, in West Palm Beach, Florida, at age 39. Son had claimed his father was ‘bagman’ for Kennedy assassination. ‘Payoff’ took place in Haiti (remember deMohrenschildt was in Haiti 1963-64). Check Burris and the claim that he was in import-export business with Simpson in Paris.”

Ron

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What do you know about Carmine Bellino and William Birely?

John:

Contrary to the Midnight piece by Mal Abrahams, Lou Russell seems to have passed away on July 2, 1973 [not July 31, as claimed.] 

John Leon died of a heart attack 11 days later.

Eleven days after that, George Bush the Elder mounted a pre-emptive attack against Watergate Committee investigator Carmine Bellino, accusing him of having wiretapped Richard Nixon during the 1960 presidential campaign on behalf of JFK.  To do so, he supplied affidavits from several people, later discovered to be completely bogus, that had been given to Bush by Leon, and his most recent [and most recently deceased] employee, Lou Russell.  On its face, it seems that Bush only brought out the affidavits once those who provided them, and thus the only ones who knew they were completely false [other than the purported affiants], were dead.

Even when doing so, Bush entered them into the public discourse with a most unusual caveat:  "I cannot and do not vouch for the veracity of the statements contained in the affidavits, but I do believe that this matter is serious enough to concern the Senate Watergate committee, and particularly since its chief investigator is the subject of the charges contained in the affidavits. If these charges are true, a taint would most certainly be attached to some of the committee's work."

While this didn't succeed in derailing the Watergate investigation, it was a major stalling tactic that bought the Nixon White House about ten weeks of time, until Bellino was cleared of all suspicion in that regard.

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John, your speculation on Fensterwald is way off. Please read Coincidence or Conspiracy? which came out in 1977 and was up to that time probably the best book on the assassination, detailing many of the links between Watergate and the JFK hit. It is VERY damaging to the CIA. I think the Fensterwald is CIA nonsense got started by Weberman, who was upset when Fensterwald, one of the leaders of the conspiracy community, was dismissive of Weberman's theory that Hunt and Sturgis were the tramps. Those who need to believe that Richard Nixon was set up also bad mouth Fensterwald, as he was McCord's lawyer; what they fail to see is that McCord had had enough and was willing to spill the beans, and that Fensterwald wanted to be there to help him spill them. That McCord was particularly incensed by Nixon's attempt to blame the CIA for his own misdeeds,, of course, meant that for one brief moment Fensterwald was on the side of the CIA. Read Coincidence or Conspiracy? before you make any decisions regarding his real agenda.

BTW Widows by Joseph Trento (who testified he SAW the Hunt memo) and William Corson (who denied the existence of the memo under oath) has a couple of chapters on Paisley as well.

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John, your speculation on Fensterwald is way off.  Please read Coincidence or Conspiracy? which came out in 1977 and was up to that time probably the best book on the assassination, detailing many of the links between Watergate and the JFK hit. 

I have a copy of the book (on your recommendation). It is indeed a detailed account of the links between Watergate and the assassination of JFK. However, there is not one reference to Lou Russell. In fact, other important figures like John Paisley, Lee R. Pennington, John Leon and Carmine Bellino are also not mentioned. I have ony just started investigating Fensterwald. Hopefully, I will have more information on him. However, at this moment in time I think he has to be seen as a suspicious character.

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