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Max Holland, the CIA, and left-liberal mag. disinformation.


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I was interested to read Joan Mellen's footnotes about Max Holland's role in trying to poison the well of the Italian independent communist newpaper as soviet inkwell.

What stuck out for me was that Holland was on the editorial board of the nation.

Has anyone read the book The CIA and Culture by Francis Stoner Saunders? (New Press, 2000). She primarily focusses on a cold war left liberal magazine called Encounter. This was a CIA created mag, that was targetted to the social democratic, academic types in the U.S., with the goal of keeping this SMALL BUT STRATEGICALLY IMPORTANT part of the political spectrum sufficiently anti-soviet or anti-'neautralist' in their foreign policy.

She points out that the CIA was no oaf as far as propagandizing to this audience: the mag. avoided crude anti-communism by remembering who they were writing for. On most domestic policies, such as health care, they offered standard left-liberal fare. Five of six articles would be left-liberal sounding, but this was to get the fish to take the bait: the sixth article per month would be harshly anti- soviet or critical of 'neutralists' like Sukarno.

Since 9/11 I have notice that the Nation has hardly written anything about the intelligence failures other than Corny efforts that do little more than scoff.

Why is Holland writing in The Nation? Is it playing a similar firewall role (targetting those readers on the left who might most likely be suspicious of the cia) that Encounter played for a similar, small but strategically important audience between 1954 and 1963?

This is of course speculative. I don't have a shred of evidence proving that Holland is an asset. (Although Mellen writes that his writing has appeared on the CIA's websight) But Stoner's book shows that this left-liberal "gatekeeping" is far more than speculation.

The mainsteam media's complicity in disinformation around the Kennedy assasination should always be born in mind whenever that cowcatcher phrase "conspiracy theory" is bandied about. Isn't the mainstream media itself responsible for "conspiracy theory" when they have such a documented record as the narative engine of corporate power?

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Dr. Gary Aguilar has written pretty much the ultimate treatment of Max Holland here.

Here is fellow member, Mel Ayton's take on Max Holland:

http://hnn.us/roundup/comments/7965.html

I especially liked this bit: "This excellent book quickly and decisively silences the conspiracy critics who believe that LBJ had a hand in the murder of his predecessor." How have we been silenced? It was you who ran away when we tackled you about your theories.

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Dr. Gary Aguilar has written pretty much the ultimate treatment of Max Holland here.

Good for Gary!! Holland has been a jerk on this case for decades now. Like fellow leftie -(who I otherwise greatly admire)- Noam Chomksy, these people either have their heads in the sand, or are paid off to write this crap. Any joe-six pack KNOWS JFK was killed by a conspiracy and at this time most people know why. Holland MUST know better. Chomksky and Salandria have had some intense correspondance over the years on Chomsky's REFUSAL to acknowledge reality. To no avail tho. Being a "leftie" myself, this blind spot has always angered and mystified me.

Dawn

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Well the last word has yet to be written on Mad Max Holland.

Is Mel still a member of this forum? Holland does nothing what is attributed to him.

I first saw Max at a Nation Mag sponsored symposium at New York City's Town Hall, re: Stone's JFK, and Stone was part of the panel, that included Max and the only rational voice - Nora Ephram.

Meeting Max for the first time at the DC Warren Commission symposium last November, I got his book The Assassination Tapes, and David Talbot's request for a review, but I'm now putting the book in its proper context, that includes the Nation and Holland's other published pieces.

As for the edited transcripts of the AF1 radio tapes, that Holland edits even further, I transcribed my own version of the same tapes, and mine is different than his, or the LBJ official library transcript, which misidentifies the origin of some of the transmissons.

As for whether he is a certified CIA asset or not, if you follow the money, and the non-profiot "philantropic" foundations who fund his "research" you will find some interesting ABLE DANGER type assocations. It's quite clear who is paying his freight; not the Nation.

And don't forget that it was the Nation that published Jean Daniel's original report of having been with Castro when he was informed that JFK was dead, and what Castro's reaction was, "This is very bad...."

BK

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Dawn wrote:

Like fellow leftie -(who I otherwise greatly admire)- Noam Chomksy, these people either have their heads in the sand, or are paid off to write this crap. Any joe-six pack KNOWS JFK was killed by a conspiracy and at this time most people know why. Holland MUST know better.

The usual: anyone who disagrees with my opinion is either on the CIA payroll or a fool.

No room for an honest difference of opinion--even if it emanates from a seasoned left-winger like Chomsky.

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As for the Chomper, I am convinced he just hasn't read much about the assasination. (Too much time reading everything else!) From what he's written I think that he is concerned that assasination research is not 'structuralist' enough: by this I mean that it focuses too much on individuals and not enough on "elite institutions' of power. The peril of assasination research-- in this structuralist view-- is that it could lead to the simplistic notion that "had Kennedy lived everything would have been totally different"

B)

What pisses me off vis a vis the snooty structuralists--many of whom have a penchent for typing vis a vis as an outlet to their class anxiety-- is that they throw out much baby with bathwater. Peter Dale Scott's Deep Politics showed the academic types that they can get structural with assasination research.

Since when did God

:blink: divide the world into structuralist stuff vs. assasination research? Why do historians alow this twain to meet with other events like Caesar's mishap, but not Kennedy's?

I am beginning to wonder if its not a case of academics guarding their funded turf. Isn't it precisely things like the Kennedy assasination that could get masses of people thinking structurally about power? If leftists like chomsky claim to want people to understand how capita... er elite-driven society works isn't the Kennedy assasination a great ramp onto a freeway of knowledge that might otherwise only be accessed

by academic gurus in elite institutions. (Sure it is easy to disparage a lot of assasiniton research, but how much of this is due to democratic stupidity and how much is due to the disinformatio?)

Chomsky also creates a straw dog of assasination researchers by making them seem naive, as if Kennedy were some kind of angel-peacenik. Most good ones don't. Joan Mellen's does a particularly good job of avoiding this dichotomy.

Mellen's evocation of Kennedy's two track policy--at once negotiating a repoche(rest of that frenchword) with Castro AND planning Castro's assasination-- is for me a convincing rebuttal of the Chomsky- Cockburn

argument that "Kennedy was just as much a cold war hawk as the CIA anyway so why did they need to kill him" . The Special Group to kill Castro was almost a necessary fall back plan if the detente feelers were rebuffed . How else could a president try something daringly new in the context of uniformly rightist Joint Chiefs of Staff and Joint Chiefs of Media.?

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I was interested to read Joan Mellen's footnotes about Max Holland's role in trying to poison the well of the Italian independent communist newpaper as soviet inkwell. What stuck out for me was that Holland was on the editorial board of the nation.

Has anyone read the book The CIA and Culture by Francis Stoner Saunders? (New Press, 2000). She primarily focusses on a cold war left liberal magazine called Encounter. This was a CIA created mag, that was targetted to the social democratic, academic types in the U.S., with the goal of keeping this SMALL BUT STRATEGICALLY IMPORTANT part of the political spectrum sufficiently anti-soviet or anti-'neautralist' in their foreign policy. She points out that the CIA was no oaf as far as propagandizing to this audience:....Why is Holland writing in The Nation? Is it playing a similar firewall role (targetting those readers on the left who might most likely be suspicious of the cia) that Encounter played for a similar, small but strategically important audience between 1954 and 1963?

This is of course speculative. I don't have a shred of evidence proving that Holland is an asset. (Although Mellen writes that his writing has appeared on the CIA's websight).....

Okay Nate, I have a shred of evidence.

Back when the CIA was first established (1947), Frank Wisner came up with the idea of getting wealthy, patriotic people to establish philanthropic non-profit foundations - orgs., that would be used as a tax write off and a means to funnell money to covert CIA operations. David Wise and Thomas Ross, in thier groundbreaking book The Invisible Government, identified some of these orgs, including, in a footnote, the Philadelphia based Catherwood Foundation.

Among the CIA's ops funded by the Catherwood Foundation was a special project with the International Division of the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism [see: Catherwood Foundation ], and a special journalism award The Columbia-Catherwood Award.

Since Catherwood's CIA ties were exposed, his name was taken off the award, tough the CIA continued their association with Columbia Graduate School of Journalism, which also administers the Pulitzer Prize. Two such prizes [one for Common Ground] were awared to J. Anthony Lucas, an exceptional journalist whose last assignment, before he committed suicide, was to write a book [big Trouble : A Murder in a Small Western Town - Simon & Schuster, 1997] about the 1905 political assassination of former Idaho governor FranK Steunenberg. The trial [ http://www. hunterbear.org ].

Well now the J. Anthony Lucas Foundation has replaced the Catherwood Foundation in the issuing of such awards, and when Max Holland's Guggenheim and Miller Center money ran out, the J. Anthony Lucas Foundation awarded Max a $45 grand works-in-progress grant to finish his book - a beatification of the Warren Commission.

There's a little sub-sponsor in Holland's Lucas award, from Hunter-Douglas, a real shaddy company that makes venitian blinds - that was founded by Henry Sonnenberg in 1919 in Germany, but moved to USA in 1940, when Sonnenberg merged with Joe Hunter and changed his name to Douglas - picking the name at random from a phone book - creating Hunter-Douglas. At some point they sold their US assets and moved their HQ operatons to the Netherlands, and then bought back their US business.

I'm not making any accuastions here, just pointing out the fact that Max Holland's money comes from 1) Miller Center; 2) Guggehneim; 3) J. Tony Lucas and 4) Hunter-Douglas.

Just to set the record straight, back in 1992, I received a $3,000 grant from the Fund For Constitutional Government Investigative Journalism Project, to research "the latest leads" in the assassination of President Kenendy, which I used to buy a round trip, cross country train ticket, stopping in Philadelphia, Chicago, New Orleans, Houston, Dallas and San Diego, visiting and interviewing researchers, witnesses and suspects.

In return they only asked that upon publication that I metion the contribution from their organization. I'm sure my $3 grand went a lot further and I got a lot more out of it than Max's is getting out of his $45 grand, though in the end he might prove me wrong.

I've considered applying for a grant from the Catherwood Foundation to research and investigate the CIA's funding of covert operations by ostensibly philanthropic organizations, figuring that if they support my reseach they'll also get to read the results.

BK

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Bill-

This stuff about the Catherwood foundation is very interesting. Right now i know someone who is doing as PhD on the Rock. Foundation grants to Journalism Schools during the Cold War. This is a subject that fascinates me to no end, but I am hungry to learn more about it. Does anyone know of any good texts to read about this.

The discipline of journalism, I think, would have been of intense interest to elite cold war planners. Key historians of the 1950s, such as Hoffsteder and Louis Hartz emphasized a highly elitist form of liberalism that was based on expertise. This expertise tended to match a stegnthening of the boundaries between the academic disciplines of the Cold War university. To some extent Journalism needed to be isolated by some (artificially created?) professional criteria, so that it could meet the demand for concensus of the cold war state while still maintaining the illusion of objectivity.

There is a great writer on Communications theory at American University, named Chrostopher Simpson. He was written some great stuff on the origin of the Communications discipline in American Universities. It was essentially born from the strategic bombing surveys vs. Japan at the end of WWII. So much for the objective nature of the Universities!

Does anyone else know of any good research on the CIA and U.S. Journalism Schools? After all, the trained parrots who covered the Warren Commision and who continue to defend its corpse have to have been trained somewhere.

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As for the Chomper, I am convinced he just hasn't read much about the assasination. (Too much time reading everything else!) From what he's written I think that he is concerned that assasination research is not 'structuralist' enough: by this I mean that it focuses too much on individuals and not enough on "elite institutions' of power. The peril of assasination research-- in this structuralist view-- is that it could lead to the simplistic notion that "had Kennedy lived everything would have been totally different"

My undertstanding is that Chomsky thinks that Kennedy was not worth killing. Chomsky considers Kennedy one of the bad guys and so fails to see why the other bad guys would want to kill him. I simplify it because I think that's how simple it is for Chomsky. I've heard that he does believe MLK was killed by a conspiracy, so he has nothing against the idea of a mass conspiracy to kill a public figure, just not against Kennedy. This massive BLIND SPOT on Chomsky's part makes me skeptical of much of his other work. Which is as it should be.

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[quote name='Tim Gratz' date='Nov 27 2005, 10:18 AM' post='46590']

Dawn wrote:

Like fellow leftie -(who I otherwise greatly admire)- Noam Chomksy, these people either have their heads in the sand, or are paid off to write this crap. Any joe-six pack KNOWS JFK was killed by a conspiracy and at this time most people know why. Holland MUST know better.

The usual: anyone who disagrees with my opinion is either on the CIA payroll or a fool.

No room for an honest difference of opinion--even if it emanates from a seasoned left-winger like Chomsky.

TG: Did you actually READ Dr. Aguilar's excellent piece above? If so do you disagree with it? Agree with Holland? What does one's "seasondness" have to do with being intellectually dishonest on the question of conspiracy??

Dawn

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As for whether he is a certified CIA asset or not, if you follow the money, and the non-profiot "philantropic" foundations who fund his "research" you will find some interesting ABLE DANGER type assocations. It's quite clear who is paying his freight; not the Nation.

And don't forget that it was the Nation that published Jean Daniel's original report of having been with Castro when he was informed that JFK was dead, and what Castro's reaction was, "This is very bad...."

BK

Bill, wasn't it New Republic who broke the Daniel story? Are you a disinfo agent? (A JOKE)

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As for whether he is a certified CIA asset or not, if you follow the money, and the non-profiot "philantropic" foundations who fund his "research" you will find some interesting ABLE DANGER type assocations. It's quite clear who is paying his freight; not the Nation.

And don't forget that it was the Nation that published Jean Daniel's original report of having been with Castro when he was informed that JFK was dead, and what Castro's reaction was, "This is very bad...."

BK

Bill, wasn't it New Republic who broke the Daniel story? Are you a disinfo agent? (A JOKE)

Hello Pat, And you are absolutly right about the New Republic and Jean Daniel story. I even used to subscribe to the New Republic, that's how liberal I used to be in my misguided youth. I stand corrected. Where's Gary Mack? I thought that was his job.

I have been talking with author of the Max & the Nation article Gary Aguliar however, and am expanding on my thesis that the Tony Lucas Foundatioun has taken over some of the CIA propaganda ops from the Catherwood Foundation.

Also, along these same lines, though it probably deserves a mention on the Mockingbird thread, the current issue of Rolling Stone (which did publish Bernstein's article on CIA use of journalists), has an article by James Bamfored - The Man Who Sold The War - about John Rendon - another Jersey Guy, who the CIA and Pentagon paid millions - $100 million as part of PR campaign to sell the war in Iraq. Very interesting.

BK

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My undertstanding is that Chomsky thinks that Kennedy was not worth killing. Chomsky considers Kennedy one of the bad guys and so fails to see why the other bad guys would want to kill him. I simplify it because I think that's how simple it is for Chomsky. I've heard that he does believe MLK was killed by a conspiracy, so he has nothing against the idea of a mass conspiracy to kill a public figure, just not against Kennedy. This massive BLIND SPOT on Chomsky's part makes me skeptical of much of his other work. Which is as it should be.

Pat: You're pretty correct in your take on Chomsky here, re the assasssination issue. I used to go see him speak back in the 70's - 80's at MIT where he teaches. I love his book "The Washingto Connection and Third World Fascism". During one of these lectures he and my old pal Carl Oglesby were both on the bill and that is when I first learned of Noam's "no conspiracy" view. I saw Carl- after the debate- try further to convince Chomsky, to no avail. So years later, after I got online, I'd check to see if this had changed. I have read letters between Chomsky and Salandria and Chomsky is truly "blind" on this. But then there are a lot of left leaning writers, journalists, etc. who take that stance. Max Holland is clearly CIA, or at least that's how he has always come across to me, but I don't think this is the case with other journalists. I think it's more attibutable to repeating what their "peers" say. Like Rather and Jennings, two prime examples. If THEY, "liberal bastions" that the Rush Limbough's say they are, believe in the WC, dare they question it? I also agree with Nathaniel (or whoever posted above) that they are not well-versed in assassination literature. Nor are they versed in the WC fantasy.

So critics like us are preceived as "unbalanced", "seeing conspiracies where none exists". When in reality history is replete with conspiracy.

Dawn

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  • 1 month later...

MAD MAX IS BACK,

and at it again. This guy is tenacious, never gives up even after being proven wrong.

Article posted February 2, 2006 (February 20, 2006 issue)

The JFK Lawyers' Conspiracy

MAX HOLLAND

http://www.thenation.com/docprem.mhtml?i+20060220&s=holland

During forty-two years of controvery over the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, the legal profession has played an instrumental role....

After Max Holland twice slammed COPA conferences [for the late Ben Franklyn at Washington Spectator], the third time he showed up asking for a press pass John Judge told him that since he didn't like the previous two COPAs, he was obviously there on someone else's ticket, and they could pay for it.

Holland says that the Warren Commission's "fundamental findings have never been seriously impeached" and that those lawyers "chiefly responsible for putting the Warren Report into undeserved disrepute" are "less scrupulous" than the Commission lawyers.

As a hack without scruples himself, Holland should certainly know whose scrupulous and whose not.

BK

bkjfk3@yahoo.com

Edited by William Kelly
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