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Kennedy, CIA,and Iraq in 1963:


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I have begun reading a book by Barry M. Lando called Web of Deceit: The History of Western Complicity inf Iraq, from Chruchill to Kennedy to George W. Bush.

I havn't done any reading on the Coup of 1963 in Iraq, so I'd be interested on members views of this description of Kennedy and the CIA's role.

With the approval of president Kennedy, the CIA took decisive action. American agents across the region helped organize

a coup. From their base in Kuwait, they intercepted Iraqi communications and transmitted commands to the Iraqi

plotters. A secret CIA unit known as the Health Alteration Committee sent Qasim a monogrmmed, poisoned hankerchief

,which may be ranked along with the posisoned cigars reputedly sent to Fidel Castro as among the more preposterous

failed CIA assassination plots (p.28)

What do members think: was Kennedy on the same page as the CIA re Iraq in 1963? I have certainly learned not to trust just one author on the degree

of cooperation between JFK and the CIA, reguarding "that coup xxxx"

Interesstingly, the book argues that Kuwait served as a pretext for British and US movements against Iraq in 1963 as well as in 1990. This parallel is rarely drawn.

Lando maintains that the CIA provided direct help in the post coup crackdown on the opposition, a process by which a young Saddam Hussein

continued his rise to prominance:

The Savagery went on for monthsand stripped Iraq of its most educated classes.... In fact, far from protesting against these actions,

the U.S. had enabled them. According to several sources, among them King Hussein of jordan, who maintained strong links with

the CIA, lists of "Communists" to be dealt with were relayed by radio to Baghdad from Kuwait on the day of the coup. The Butchery

began as soon as the lists reached Baghdad. According to Said Aburish, one of the main sources for the list was William McHale, a

CIA agent operating under cover of a Time magazine correspondent.

How Time flys. Does anyone know anything else re William McHale? Who would he have been working under? Was this Helms' bailywick as an

extension of his time in Iran?

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