Spitfire List Web site and blog of anti-fascist researcher and radio personality Dave Emory.
The tag 'Disinformation' is associated with 79 posts.

FTR #1075 Surveillance Valley, Part 1: Eugenics, Racism and High Tech

Begin­ning a crit­i­cal­ly impor­tant series on a vital­ly impor­tant book titled Sur­veil­lance Val­ley: The Secret Mil­i­tary His­to­ry of the Inter­net, this pro­gram explores the gen­e­sis of high tech and data pro­cess­ing, an ori­gin that is inex­tri­ca­bly linked with eugen­ics, anti-immi­grant doc­trine and–as is char­ac­ter­is­tic of fas­cism, the fear of the ubiq­ui­tous, malev­o­lent “oth­er.”

High­lights of dis­cus­sion and analy­sis include:

1.–The gen­e­sis of high tech was Her­man Hol­lerith’s tab­u­lat­ing machine. ” . . . . A few years ear­li­er, work­ing for the U.S. Cen­sus Bureau, Hol­lerith had devel­oped the world’s first func­tion­al mass-pro­duced com­put­er: the Hol­lerith tab­u­la­tor. An electro­mechan­i­cal device about the size of large desk and dress­er, it used punch cards and a clever arrange­ment of gears, sorters, elec­tri­cal con­tacts, and dials to process data with blaz­ing speed and accu­ra­cy. What had tak­en years by hand could be done in a mat­ter of months. As one U.S. news­pa­per described it, ‘with [the device’s] aid some 15 young ladies can count accu­rate­ly half a mil­lion of names in a day.’ . . .’
2.–Hollerith’s machine found its (arguably) great­est appli­ca­tion with the com­pi­la­tion of the cen­sus and the appli­ca­tion of the pseu­do-sci­ence of eugen­ics to it: ” . . . . Grasp­ing about for solu­tions, many set­tled on var­i­ous strains of race sci­ence quack­ery. So-called social Dar­win­ists relied on a twist­ed ver­sion of the the­o­ry of evo­lu­tion to explain why the poor and mar­gin­al­ized should remain that way while the wealthy and suc­cess­ful deserved to rule unchal­lenged. Tak­ing this notion a step fur­ther, adher­ents of eugen­ics fer­vent­ly believed that nat­u­ral­ly supe­ri­or Anglo-Amer­i­cans were on the verge of being wiped out due to the high birth rates of ‘degen­er­ate’ and immi­grant stock. To head off this threat, they advo­cat­ed strict con­trols on repro­duc­tion — breed­ing humans for qual­i­ty in the same way that farm­ers did cows and hors­es. . . .”
3.–Hollerith’s machine was seen as the per­fect vehi­cle for real­iz­ing eugenic prac­tice through refin­ing the cen­sus: ” . . . . The cen­sus had been a racial instru­ment from its incep­tion, begin­ning with the orig­i­nal con­sti­tu­tion­al clause that instruct­ed cen­sus offi­cials to count black slaves sep­a­rate­ly from whites and to assign them a val­ue of only three-fifths of a per­son. With each decade, new ‘racial’ cat­e­gories were invent­ed and added to the mix: ‘free col­ored males and females’ and ‘mulat­to’ were count­ed, includ­ing sub­di­vi­sions like includ­ing ‘quadroon’ and ‘octoroon.’ Cat­e­gories for Chi­nese, ‘Hin­doo,’ and Japan­ese were added, as were ‘for­eign’ and ‘native born’ des­ig­na­tions for whites. The cen­sus slow­ly expand­ed to col­lect oth­er demo­graph­ic data, includ­ing lit­er­a­cy lev­els, unem­ploy­ment sta­tis­tics, and med­ical ail­ments, such as those who were ‘deaf, dumb, and blind’ and the ‘insane and idi­ot­ic.’ All of it was bro­ken down by race. . . .The cen­sus need­ed to improve dras­ti­cal­ly. What it need­ed was a tal­ent­ed inven­tor, some­one young and ambi­tious who would be able to come up with a method to auto­mate tab­u­la­tion and data analy­sis. Some­one like Her­man Hol­lerith. . . .”
4.–Hollerith’s technology–when applied to the cen­sus, antic­i­pat­ed the mass sur­veil­lance tech­nol­o­gy of the inter­net: ” . . . . Overnight, Hollerith’s tab­u­la­tor tech­nol­o­gy had trans­formed cen­sus tak­ing from a sim­ple head count into some­thing that looked very much like a crude form of mass sur­veil­lance. To the race-obsessed polit­i­cal class, it was a rev­o­lu­tion­ary devel­op­ment. They could final­ly put the nation’s eth­nic make­up under the micro­scope. The data seemed to con­firm the nativists’ worst fears: Poor, illit­er­ate immi­grants were swarm­ing America’s cities, breed­ing like rab­bits, and out­strip­ping native Anglo-Amer­i­can birth rates. Imme­di­ate­ly fol­low­ing the cen­sus, the states and the fed­er­al gov­ern­ment passed a flur­ry of laws that heav­i­ly restrict­ed immi­gra­tion. . . .”
5.–As dis­cussed in FTR #279, IBM’s Hol­lerith machines (acquired when Thomas J. Wat­son bought out Hol­lerith) were fun­da­men­tal to the oper­a­tions of the Third Reich: ” . . . . ‘Indeed, the Third Reich would open star­tling sta­tis­ti­cal venues for Hol­lerith machines nev­er before insti­tut­ed — per­haps nev­er before even imag­ined,’ wrote Edwin Black in IBM and the Holo­caust, his pio­neer­ing 2001 exposé of the for­got­ten busi­ness ties between IBM and Nazi Ger­many. ‘In Hitler’s Ger­many, the sta­tis­ti­cal and cen­sus com­mu­ni­ty, over­run with doc­tri­naire Nazis, pub­licly boast­ed about the new demo­graph­ic break­throughs their equip­ment would achieve.’ . . . Demand for Hol­lerith tab­u­la­tors was so robust that IBM was forced to open a new fac­to­ry in Berlin to crank out all the new machines. At the facility’s chris­ten­ing cer­e­mo­ny, which was attend­ed by a top U.S. IBM exec­u­tive and the elite of the Nazi Par­ty, the head of IBM’s Ger­man sub­sidiary gave a rous­ing speech about the impor­tant role that Hol­lerith tab­u­la­tors played in Hitler’s dri­ve to puri­fy Ger­many and cleanse it of infe­ri­or racial stock. . . .”
6.–The Trump admin­is­tra­tion’s fram­ing of ques­tions for the 2020 cen­sus appear aimed at cre­at­ing a “nation­al registry”–a con­cept rem­i­nis­cent of the Third Reich’s use of IBM’s Hol­lerith-col­lect­ed data: ” . . . . Based on a close read­ing of inter­nal Depart­ment of Com­merce doc­u­ments tied to the cen­sus cit­i­zen ques­tion pro­pos­al, it appears the Trump admin­is­tra­tion wants to use the cen­sus to con­struct a first-of-its-kind cit­i­zen­ship reg­istry for the entire U.S. pop­u­la­tion — a deci­sion that arguably exceeds the legal author­i­ty of the cen­sus. ‘It was deep in the doc­u­men­ta­tion that was released,’ Robert Groves, a for­mer Cen­sus Bureau direc­tor who head­ed the Nation­al Acad­e­mies com­mit­tee con­vened to inves­ti­gate the 2020 cen­sus, told me by tele­phone. ‘No one picked up on it much. But the term ‘reg­istry’ in our world means not a col­lec­tion of data for sta­tis­ti­cal pur­pos­es but rather to know the iden­ti­ty of par­tic­u­lar peo­ple in order to use that knowl­edge to affect their lives.’ Giv­en the administration’s pos­ture toward immi­gra­tion, the fact that it wants to build a com­pre­hen­sive cit­i­zen­ship data­base is high­ly con­cern­ing. To Groves, it clear­ly sig­nals ‘a bright line being crossed.’ . . .”


The CIA and Fox News Background of Trump’s New Minister of Truth

The State Depart­men­t’s “Min­istry of Truth” is going to be head­ed by a Fox News and CIA vet­er­an, Lea Gabrielle. Designed to neu­tral­ize what the Pow­ers That Be deem to be for­eign pro­pa­gan­da, the bland­ly-named Glob­al Engage­ment Cen­ter has been exem­pli­fied by its attempts to por­tray as “Russ­ian dis­in­for­ma­tion” the ver­i­fi­ably Nazi char­ac­ter and polit­i­cal her­itage of the OUN/B suc­ces­sor orga­ni­za­tions wield­ing the police, edu­ca­tion­al and nation­al secu­ri­ty reins in Ukraine. ” . . . . Gabrielle, who begins her job on Feb. 11, was described to reporters by deputy spokesman Robert Pal­ladi­no on Thurs­day as ‘a for­mer CIA-trained human intel­li­gence oper­a­tions offi­cer, defense for­eign liai­son offi­cer, Unit­ed States Navy pro­gram direc­tor, Navy F/A‑18C fight­er pilot, and nation­al tele­vi­sion news cor­re­spon­dent and anchor at two dif­fer­ent net­works. . . .” Cur­rent Sec­re­tary of State Mike Pom­peo was for­mer­ly head of the CIA.


FTR #1053 Interview #22 with Jim DiEugenio about “Destiny Betrayed”

House Select Com­mit­tee on Assas­si­na­tions Assis­tant Coun­sel Jonathan Black­mer: “. . . . ‘We have rea­son to believe Shaw was heav­i­ly involved in the Anti-Cas­tro efforts in New Orleans in the 1960s and [was] pos­si­bly one of the high lev­el plan­ners or ‘cut out’ to the plan­ners of the assas­si­na­tion.’ . . . .”

This is the twen­ty-sec­ond in a planned long series of inter­views with Jim DiEu­ge­nio about his tri­umphal analy­sis of Pres­i­dent Kennedy’s assas­si­na­tion and New Orleans Dis­trict Attor­ney Jim Gar­rison’s hero­ic inves­ti­ga­tion of the killing.

This pro­gram con­tin­ues exam­i­na­tion of the House Select Com­mit­tee on Assas­si­na­tions.

Even­tu­al­ly, the col­lab­o­ra­tionist main­stream media began an assault on Richard Sprague and the work of the com­mit­tee. The New York Times, The Los Ange­les Times and The Wash­ing­ton Post began the assault, which quick­ly drew blood. . . .

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; pp. 333–334.

. . . . The only time he ever had his cre­den­tials ques­tioned was dur­ing the six months he agreed to swerve as coun­sel to the HSCA. And that is sim­ply because he was going to super­vise a real inves­ti­ga­tion of the JFK case. Yet, the same thing hap­pened to him as hap­pened to Jim Gar­ri­son. In fact, like Gar­ri­son, Sprague was also even accused of being in bed with the Mafia. When the first press attacks began. HSCA staffer Chris Shar­rett remem­bers think­ing, ‘It’s Gar­ri­son all over again.’ Or, as Joe Rauh, who knew Sprague from Philadel­phia and had a front row seat to the con­tro­ver­sy in Wash­ing­ton said, ‘You know, I nev­er thought the Kennedy case was a con­spir­a­cy until now. But if they can do that to Dick Sprague, it must have been.’ With Sprague’s res­ig­na­tion, the House Select Com­mit­tee sur­vived. The inter­im Chief Coun­sel was Tanen­baum with Al Lewis, a friend and col­league of Sprague’s as his deputy. . . .

In the inter­im, between Sprague’s res­ig­na­tion and the ascen­sion of G. Robert Blakey to the Chief Coun­sel posi­tion, George DeMohren­schildt died of a shot­gun wound to the head.

DeMohren­schildt: was part of the fam­i­ly that man­aged the Nobel Oil Fields for the Czar; was the cousin of Baron Kon­stan­tin May­dell, in charge of Abwehr oper­a­tions in the Unit­ed States for a time (Abwehr was Ger­man mil­i­tary intel­li­gence); was a sus­pect­ed Nazi spy in World War II; was an asso­ciate of George H.W. Bush; was a long­time CIA asset; was a petro­le­um geol­o­gist.

DeMohren­schildt imple­ment­ed the Oswalds’ intro­duc­tion to the White Russ­ian milieu in Dal­las. Of par­tic­u­lar sig­nif­i­cance for our pur­pose is the fact that he made con­tact with the cou­ple at the sug­ges­tion of J. Wal­ton Moore, who was the pri­ma­ry CIA offi­cer in the Dal­las area!

The White Rus­sians appeared to be work­ing to sep­a­rate Mari­na and Lee, and were involved in han­dling Mari­na after the assas­si­na­tion.

A long-stand­ing CIA asset, DeMohren­schildt had worked with the agency on numer­ous projects in Yugoslavia, Haiti and else­where. Sus­pect­ed of hav­ing spied on the Aransas Pass Coast Guard Sta­tion (in Texas) for the Third Reich, DeMohren­schildt was the cousin of Baron Kon­tan­tin May­dell, who over­saw Abwehr oper­a­tions in the U.S. for a time. (The Abwehr was Ger­man mil­i­tary intel­li­gence.)

As dis­cussed in FTR #712, we high­light­ed DeMohren­schildt’s links to for­mer CIA direc­tor George H.W. Bush, for whom CIA head­quar­ters is named. In that same pro­gram, we cov­ered Bush’s involve­ment  in the JFK assas­si­na­tion. LIke DeMohren­schildt and many of the White Rus­sians who asso­ci­at­ed with the Oswalds in the Dal­las area, Bush had roots in the petro­le­um indus­try.

Note­wor­thy in the con­text of Oswald’s pres­ence in Dal­las, is that this alleged trai­tor was employed by Jag­gars, Chiles and Sto­vall, a firm that did clas­si­fied work for the mil­i­tary, includ­ing projects asso­ci­at­ed with the U‑2 spy plane! That the “trai­tor” Oswald, who offered to dis­close clas­si­fied infor­ma­tion about the U‑2 and U.S. avi­a­tion oper­a­tions to the Sovi­ets could be employed by such a firm is unthink­able, IF we are to take the offi­cial ver­sion of Oswald at face val­ue.

Ulti­mate­ly, DeMohren­schildt hand­ed the Oswalds–Lee and Marina–off to the “Quak­er lib­er­als” Michael and Ruth Paine.

DeMohren­schildt’s death was ruled a sui­cide, but the cir­cum­stances sur­round­ing his demise are note­wor­thy.

At the time he died, DeMohren­schildt was net­work­ing with a Dutch jour­nal­ist named Willem Olt­mans, who began spread­ing dis­in­for­ma­tion after DeMohren­schildt’s demise. DeMohren­schildt was also net­work­ing with jour­nal­ist Edward Epstein, who pressed the “Sovi­ets did it” meme for a time and whose behav­ior vis a vis DeMohren­schildt is ques­tion­able.

Pri­or to his death, DeMohren­schildt was under­go­ing psy­chi­atric treat­ment, appar­ent­ly includ­ing elec­tro-shock ther­a­py, from a Dal­las physi­cian named Men­doza. DeMohren­schildt’s wid­ow thinks the treat­ments may have had some­thing to do with her hus­band’s death.

The phys­i­cal evi­dence in con­nec­tion with DeMohren­schildt’s death sug­gests the dis­tinct pos­si­bil­i­ty of foul play.

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 337.

. . . . Even though a coro­ner’s inquest ruled his death as self-inflict­ed, there are some seri­ous ques­tions about DeMohren­schildt’s demise. First, accord­ing to the crime scene report and the autop­sy, there was not any exit wound to the rear of the skull. Yet DeMohren­schildt alleged­ly placed a shot­gun in his mouth and pulled the trig­ger. It’s true that shot­gun shells dis­perse more quick­ly than jack­et­ed bul­lets. But his shot was almost with­in con­tact dis­tance. Nei­ther the maid nor the cook heard the shot­gun blast, even though both women were right below the room that DeMohren­schildt was in at the time. The police also had prob­lems explain­ing the blood spat­ter on the wall. When a blood spurt hits a flat sur­face, it cre­ates a dif­fer­ent pat­tern than if it hits a sur­face that is per­pen­dic­u­lar to it. In look­ing at pho­tographs of the spat­ter pat­tern, it appears that the bath­room door was closed at the time the shoot­ing took place, because the blood pat­tern looked con­tin­u­ous. But the police said this was not the case. The bath­room door was open at the time. The tes­ti­fy­ing offi­cer demeaned the jurors for ask­ing this ques­tion and then jumped to a new top­ic. But it would appear that some­one altered the crime scene after­wards. The final odd­i­ty about the scene is the posi­tion of the weapon after death. It fell trig­ger side up, par­al­lel to the chair DeMohren­schildt was in, with the bar­rel rest­ing at his feet and the butt of the rifle away from him and to his left. The police had a prob­lem with this issue and so did the inquest jurors. As author Jer­ry Rose has not­ed, this strange posi­tion­ing of the rifle sug­gests it was “placed” by some­one.

Ms. Tilton was not at home at the time of DeMohren­schildt’s death. But she had left strict instruc­tions for the maid to record her favorite TV pro­grams. The home had an alarm sys­tem which caused a qui­et bell to ring, any­time an out­side door or win­dow was opened. Dur­ing the hear­ing, the tape of the pro­gram was played. When it was the alarm bell went off and then the gun blast was heard. . . .

Sub­se­quent­ly, writer Jer­ry Poli­coff felt that Olt­mans was threat­en­ing him and that the Dutch jour­nal­ist was a male­fac­tor.

An ini­tial can­di­date to replace Richard Sprague was for­mer Supreme Court Jus­tice Arthur Gold­berg, who had been JFK’s Sec­re­tary of Labor.

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 339.

. . . . For­mer Jus­tice of the Supreme Court Arthur Gold­berg was one can­di­date who turned down the job. Al Lewis had talked Gold­berg into fill­ing the posi­tion. But Gold­berg had one reser­va­tion. He want­ed to know if the CIA would coop­er­ate with him. Lewis sug­gest­ed call­ing up Stans­field Turn­er, Pres­i­dent Carter’s CIA Direc­tor. So Lewis called him and told him Gold­berg want­ed to talk with him. He put Gold­berg on the line and the can­di­date asked Turn­er if he could guar­an­tee the Agency would coop­er­ate if he became Chief Coun­sel. A long silence ensued. It got so long and so qui­et that Gold­berg turned to Lewis and said, ‘I’m not sure if he’s there any­more.’ Lewis sug­gest­ed that he say some­thing. So Gold­berg asked if he was still on the line and Turn­er said he was.  Gold­berg asked him for an answer to his ques­tion. Turn­er said, ‘I though my silence was my answer.’ . . . .

Even­tu­al­ly, the HSCA set­tled on G. Robert Blakey as Chief Coun­sel and Richard (Dick) Billings as a key aide. Both had been involved with tar­ring Jim Gar­ri­son with the Mafia brush in a 1967 Life Mag­a­zine series.

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 276.

. . . . But [David] Chandler’s most seri­ous blast against Gar­ri­son and his inquiry was a two-part arti­cle writ­ten for Life in the fall of 1967. This appeared in the Sep­tem­ber 1 and Sep­tem­ber 8 issues of the mag­a­zine. The pieces mas­quer­ad­ed as an expose of Mafia influ­ence in large cities in Amer­i­ca at the time. But the real tar­get of the piece was not the mob, but Gar­ri­son. The idea was to depict him as a cor­rupt New Orleans DA who had some kind of neb­u­lous ties to the Mafia and Car­los Mar­cel­lo. There were four prin­ci­pal par­tic­i­pants in the pieces: Chan­dler, Sandy Smith, Dick Billings, and Robert Blakey. Smith was the actu­al billed writer. And since Smith was a long-time asset of the FBI, it is very like­ly that the Bureau was the Bureau was the orig­i­nat­ing force behind the mag­a­zine run­ning the piece. . . .

. . . . It was the work of Chan­dler, a friend of both Clay Shaw and Ker­ry Thorn­ley, which was the basis of the com­plete­ly pho­ny con­cept that Gar­ri­son was some­how in bed with the Mafia and his func­tion was to steer atten­tion from their killing of Kennedy. . . .

Blakey:

1.–Effectively eclipsed the New Orleans leads devel­oped by Jim Gar­ri­son.
2.–Bought into the Mag­ic Bul­let The­o­ry.
3.–Eclipsed evi­dence about “Oswald’s” sniper’s nest in the Texas School Book Depos­i­to­ry.

Most impor­tant­ly, Blakey gave the intel­li­gence ser­vices the right to veto what infor­ma­tion would go into the com­mit­tee’s report.

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 350.

” . . . . When Robert Blakey took charge of the House Select Com­mit­tee on Assas­si­na­tions, he agreed to do some­thing that Richard Sprague would not. In return for access to clas­si­fied mate­ri­als, mem­bers and employ­ees f the com­mit­tee signed agree­ments pledg­ing not to dis­close any infor­ma­tion they gar­nered while doing their work. Then, when Blakey, Gary Corn­well, and Dick Billings edit­ed the report and vol­umes, the agen­cies they made agree­ments that [the agen­cies] were allowed to veto what infor­ma­tion was includ­ed in the pub­lished vol­umes. This is the rea­son that the HSCA report on Mex­i­co City–assembled by two law stu­dents of Blakey’s from Cornell–was not part of the pub­lished vol­umes in 1979. For when it came time to vet the report for release, Blakey, Ed Lopez and Dan Hard­way met with the CIA rep­re­sen­ta­tives. The Agency made so many objec­tions, it took four hours to get through the first two para­graphs. The report is over 300 pages long. It was there­fore clas­si­fied until the ARRB was cre­at­ed. And then it had to go through sev­er­al reviews. But even today, an annex to the report, ‘Was Oswald an Agent of the CIA’ has not been released. This long clas­si­fied report con­firms that, as Gar­ri­son wrote in 1968, the Com­mis­sion ver­sion of what hap­pened in Mex­i­co City was delib­er­ate­ly cov­ered in mist. . . .

Near the end of his inves­ti­ga­tion, Blakey was on the receiv­ing end of some ques­tion­able behav­ior from CIA liai­son Reg­is Blahut:

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 340.

. . . . Toward the end, when CIA liai­son Reg­is Blahut was caught mis­han­dling Kennedy’s autop­sy pho­tos while they were secured in a safe, the Agency offered Blakey four ways to do an inquiry of what had hap­pened. The main object being to see if Blahut was part of  a larg­er oper­a­tion to under­mine the HSCA. One option was to do the inquiry through the D.C. police, anoth­er was through the FBI, and the third was an inter­nal HSCA inquiry. The last was to have the CIA do it. Even though the Agency offi­cers at this meet­ing strong­ly encour­aged Blakey not to choose them to do the inves­ti­ga­tion, he still did. The report­ing offi­cer, Hav­i­land Smith, made the only con­clu­sion he could from this meet­ing He wrote that his inter­pre­ta­tion of what Blakey want­ed was the Agency ‘to go ahead with the inves­ti­ga­tion of Blahut and that he expects us to come up with a clean bill of health for the CIA.’ Which, of course, they did despite the fact that Blahut flunked three poly­graph tests. When the author talked to HSCA staffer Eddie Lopez about this mat­ter, I told him that in read­ing these mem­o­ran­da, I was struck by  how friend­ly Blakey was with these CIA offi­cers. That is, what a  seem­ing­ly easy rap­port he had with them. I said, ‘You know, Eddie he talks to them . . . “Lopez inter­rupt­ed me in mid-sen­tence and com­plet­ed the thought for me: ‘He talks to them like he’s one of them.’ . . . .”

We note that, dur­ing the ear­ly phase of the HSCA’s inves­ti­ga­tion, George H.W. Bush was in charge of the CIA. George Joan­nides, who man­aged the DRE for CIA, was the Agen­cy’s main liai­son to the HSCA.


FTR #1052 Interview #21 with Jim DiEugenio about “Destiny Betrayed”

House Select Com­mit­tee on Assas­si­na­tions Assis­tant Coun­sel Jonathan Black­mer: “. . . . ‘We have rea­son to believe Shaw was heav­i­ly involved in the Anti-Cas­tro efforts in New Orleans in the 1960s and [was] pos­si­bly one of the high lev­el plan­ners or ‘cut out’ to the plan­ners of the assas­si­na­tion.’ . . . .”

This is the twen­ty-first in a planned long series of inter­views with Jim DiEu­ge­nio about his tri­umphal analy­sis of Pres­i­dent Kennedy’s assas­si­na­tion and New Orleans Dis­trict Attor­ney Jim Gar­rison’s hero­ic inves­ti­ga­tion of the killing.

This pro­gram under­takes exam­i­na­tion of the House Select Com­mit­tee on Assas­si­na­tions.

The HSCA coa­lesced after a show­ing of the Zaprud­er film on tele­vi­sion cued a dra­mat­ic increase in peo­ple who were inter­est­ed in the JFK assas­si­na­tion. Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Tom Down­ing of Vir­ginia was instru­men­tal in real­iz­ing the project.

Ulti­mate­ly, respect­ed Penn­syl­va­nia pros­e­cu­tor Richard Sprague became the com­mit­tee’s Chief Coun­sel, recruit­ing skilled aides like the late Gae­ton Fonzi and Robert Tanen­baum. Net­work­ing with, among oth­ers, Penn­syl­va­nia Sen­a­tor Richard Schweik­er, Sprague, Tanen­baum, Fonzi et al quick­ly con­clud­ed that the War­ren Com­mis­sion was cov­er­ing up the assas­si­na­tion and high­light­ed the ridicu­lous nature of CE399–the so-called “Mag­ic Bul­let,” which is the evi­den­tiary core of the War­ren Com­mis­sion’s the­sis.

Ini­tial­ly, the HSCA began doing some seri­ous work, inves­ti­gat­ing and ana­lyz­ing the New Orleans con­nec­tions that Gar­ri­son inves­ti­gat­ed. In addi­tion to the Shaw, Ban­is­ter, Fer­rie Oswald rela­tion­ships, the role of David Phillips, aka “Mau­rice Bish­op,” became a sub­stan­tive focal point of their work.

Gae­ton Fonz­i’s work for the com­mit­tee focused on:

1.–CIA offi­cer Bernar­do DeTor­res’ pro­fes­sion­al career, includ­ing his work with Mitchell Wer­bell.
2.–David Phillips/“Maurice Bish­op.”
3.–The Rose Cheramie fore­shad­ow­ing of the assas­si­na­tion.
4.–Sergio Arcacha Smith’s numer­ous links to the assas­si­na­tion, includ­ing his pos­si­ble work run­ning guns with Jack Ruby and CIA con­tract agent Tomas Eli Davis.
5.–Freeport Sul­phur, its net­work­ing with both Clay Shaw and David Fer­rie and its own­er­ship by the East­ern Elite.
6.–The role of Jock Whit­ney in Freeport Sul­phur.
The pub­lish­er of The New York Her­ald Tri­bune, Whit­ney worked late into the evening of 11/22/1963, appar­ent­ly on an edi­to­r­i­al that fea­tured the book The Assas­sins, which claimed that Amer­i­ca’s assas­si­na­tions were the work of “crazed indi­vid­u­als.” The book was lat­er dis­trib­uted to mem­bers of the War­ren Com­mis­sion by none oth­er than Allen Dulles.

The pro­gram goes into the dis­cov­ery made by researcher John Hunt of the han­dling of the Mag­ic Bul­let, CE399.

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 345.

. . . . And the proof is that both the War­ren Com­mis­sion and the HSCA  signed onto the ludi­crous Sin­gle Bul­let The­o­ry. A the­o­ry that has been ren­dered even more ris­i­ble today than it was in the six­ties and sev­en­ties. For researcher John Hunt has proven with declas­si­fied doc­u­ments that the so-called Mag­ic Bul­let was at the FBI lab in Wash­ing­ton at 7:30 p.m. on the night of the twen­ty-sec­ond. But how could this be if that bul­let was not turned over by the Secret Ser­vice to FBI agent Elmer Lee Todd until 8:50 p.m.? In oth­er words, lab tech­ni­cian Robert Fra­zier had booked CE399 into his reords one hour and twen­ty min­utes before it was giv­en to him by agent Todd. But fur­ther, Tod­d’s ini­tials were said by the FBI to be on this bul­let he dropped off with Fra­zier that night. Hunt saw the blow up pho­tos of the entire cir­cum­fer­ence of CE 399 at the Nation­al Archives. The FBI lied on this key issue. For Tod­d’s ini­tials are not on the bul­let.

All one needs to know about the effi­ca­cy of the HSCA is that it nev­er took the time to do what John Hunt did. . . .

Even­tu­al­ly, the col­lab­o­ra­tionist main­stream media began an assault on Richard Sprague and the work of the com­mit­tee. The New York Times, The Los Ange­les Times and The Wash­ing­ton Post began the assault, which quick­ly drew blood. . . .


FTR #1051 Interview #20 with Jim DiEugenio about “Destiny Betrayed”

This is the twen­ti­eth in a planned long series of inter­views with Jim DiEu­ge­nio about his tri­umphal analy­sis of Pres­i­dent Kennedy’s assas­si­na­tion and New Orleans Dis­trict Attor­ney Jim Gar­rison’s hero­ic inves­ti­ga­tion of the killing.

This pro­gram deals with Oswald in Mex­i­co City, one of the most impor­tant ele­ments in con­struct­ing the cov­er-up of the assas­si­na­tion.

The Mex­i­co City gam­bit entails “Oswald” osten­si­bly trav­el­ing to Mex­i­co City to vis­it the Cuban and Sovi­et embassies, the lat­ter involv­ing “Oswald’s” alleged con­tacts with Valery Kostikov, the KGB’s agent in charge of assas­si­na­tions in the West­ern Hemi­sphere. When reports of this were cir­cu­lat­ed in the Amer­i­can media on the week­end of JFK’s assas­si­na­tion, it appeared to many that the Sovi­et Union and/or Cuba was behind the assas­si­na­tion.

Ulti­mate­ly, the pos­si­bil­i­ty of World War III and a nuclear holo­caust break­ing out as a result of the assas­si­na­tion were used by Lyn­don Baines John­son to engi­neer a cov­er-up.

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 359.

. . . . To say this decep­tion about Oswald in Mex­i­co worked well does not begin to do it jus­tice. For at the first meet­ing of the War­ren Com­mis­sion, the for­mer DA of Alame­da Coun­ty Cal­i­for­nia, Earl War­ren, came out meek as a lamb:

1.–He did not want the Com­mis­sion to employ any of their own inves­ti­ga­tors.
2.–He did not want the Com­mis­sion to gath­er evi­dence. Instead he wished for them to rely on reports made by oth­er agen­cies like the FBI and Secret Ser­vice.
3.–He did not want their hear­ings to be pub­lic. He did not want to employ the pow­er of sub­poe­na.
4.–Incredibly, he did not even want to call any wit­ness­es. He want­ed to rely on inter­views done by oth­er agen­cies.
5.–He then made a very curi­ous com­ment, “Meet­ings where wit­ness­es would be brought in would retard rather than help our inves­ti­ga­tion.

In oth­er words, as John­son told [then Sen­a­tor Richard] Rus­sell, they were to rat­i­fy the FBI’s inquiry. There was to be no real inves­ti­ga­tion by any­one. The Mex­i­co City cha­rade, with its threat of atom­ic holo­caust, had secured the cov­er up of Kennedy’s mur­der. . . .

Key ele­ments of dis­cus­sion and analy­sis on this top­ic include:

1.–Warren Com­mis­sion coun­sels David Slaw­son and William Cole­man relied on CIA and FBI liai­son for their infor­ma­tion. Specif­i­cal­ly, they relied on coun­ter­in­tel­li­gence chief James Jesus Angle­ton and and his aide Ray Roc­ca for their infor­ma­tion. NB: Mr. Emory erred at one point in this inter­view, iden­ti­fy­ing Richard Helms a head of the CIA, he was Deputy Direc­tor of the Agency at this point in time.
2.–Slawson even con­sid­ered join­ing the CIA at this point. We can but won­der if, in fact, he did just that.
3.–Richard Helms appoint­ed Angle­ton to be the main liai­son for the Agency to the War­ren Com­mis­sion. Recall that Angle­ton and Ray Roc­ca were in charge of the Oswald pre-assas­si­na­tion files.
4.–Angleton and the FBI’s William Sul­li­van coor­di­nat­ed their response con­cern­ing Oswald hav­ing ties to U.S. intel­li­gence agen­cies, deny­ing that that was, in fact, the case.
5.–A hand­ful of CIA offi­cers known as the SAS (not to be con­fused with the British com­man­do orga­ni­za­tion with the same ini­tials) devel­oped an inter­est in Oswald weeks before the assas­si­na­tion.
6.–Slawson and Cole­man relied on CIA sta­tion chief Win­ston Scott when in Mex­i­co City.
7.–Sylvia Duran, employed at the Cuban embassy in Mex­i­co City, report­ed the “Lee Har­vey Oswald” with whom she met as ” . . . being short, about five foot, six inch­es, blond and over thir­ty years old. Oswald was five foot, nine inch­es, dark haired, and twen­ty-four years old. . . .” (p. 349.)
8.–Duran not­ed that the pro­ce­dure used by the Oswald impos­tor to obtain a visa was sus­pi­cious: ” . . . . “They [U.S. com­mu­nists, which “Oswald” alleged­ly was] usu­al­ly fol­lowed a pro­ce­dure, arranged for by the Amer­i­can Com­mu­nist Par­ty, which allowed them to obtain a visa in advance through the Cuban Com­mu­nist Par­ty. . . The fact that Oswald did not do this was reveal­ing. It seemed to sug­gest that either Oswald was not a real com­mu­nist, or that peo­ple inside the com­mu­nist cir­cles in Amer­i­ca thought he was an agent provo­ca­teur. They there­fore did not trust him. . . .” (pp. 349–350.)
9.–The phone calls made to Sylvia Duran at the Cuban embassy con­tain sig­nif­i­cant dis­crep­an­cies: ” . . . . Duran stat­ed firm­ly that after the twen­ty-sev­enth, when Oswald had failed to secure his spe­cial visa, he did not call her back. Again, some­one embroi­dered this for the Com­mis­sion. For in the War­ren Report, she is quot­ed as say­ing ” . . . . she does not recall whether or not Oswald lat­er tele­phoned her at the Con­sulate num­ber she gave him.” This was an impor­tant dis­crep­an­cy in tes­ti­mo­ny. Because, as we shall see, there was anoth­er call to the Russ­ian con­sulate on Sat­ur­day the twen­ty-eighth [of Sep­tem­ber, 1963]. The CIA claims this call was by Duran, with Oswald also on the line. But if Duran’s recall is cor­rect, then the CIA evi­dence is spu­ri­ous. . . .” (p. 350.)
10.–When G. Robert Blakey and his asso­ciate Richard Billings assumed con­trol over the HSCA, they made a sig­nif­i­cant con­ces­sion: ” . . . . In return for access to clas­si­fied mate­ri­als, mem­bers and employ­ees f the com­mit­tee signed agree­ments pledg­ing not to dis­close any infor­ma­tion they gar­nered while doing their work. The, when Blakey, Gary Corn­well, and Dick billings edit­ed the report and vol­umes, the agen­cies they made agree­ments that [the agen­cies] were allowed to veto what infor­ma­tion was includ­ed in the pub­lished vol­umes. . ..” (p. 350.)
11.–While “Oswald” was sup­pos­ed­ly in Mex­i­co City, Sylvia Odio was vis­it­ed by three men, one whom was iden­ti­fied as “Leon Oswald,” an ex-Marine, an excel­lent shot, and some­one who felt that JFK should be assas­si­nat­ed for fail­ing to sup­port the Bay of Pigs inva­sion. ” . . . . After read­ing the War­ren Report, [HSCA’s first Chief Coun­sel Richard] Sprague won­dered why the com­mis­sion chose to dis­count the tes­ti­mo­ny of Sil­via Odio. . . . When she first heard of Oswald’s involve­ment with the Kennedy assas­si­na­tion, she imme­di­ate­ly recalled the vis­it of the three men. That after­noon she became very fear­ful, so much so that she faint­ed. She then met with her sis­ter, ans and they had both been watch­ing tele­vi­sion with Oswald’s pho­to on the screen, they both real­ized he was the man who thought the Cubans should have killed Kennedy after the Bay of Pigs. . . .” (pp. 350–351.)
12.–The Odio inci­dent cre­at­ed prob­lems for the War­ren Com­mi­sion: ” . . . . The third prob­lem, the one that both­ered Sprague, was that the dates of the vis­it clashed with the dates that Oswald was sup­posed to be going to Mex­i­co. . . .” (p. 352.)
13.–To dis­cred­it Sylvia Odio, War­ren Com­mis­sion coun­sel Wes­ley Liebler impugned her sex­u­al mores: ” . . . . Odio described what hap­pened next to Fonzi and the Church Com­mit­tee: ‘Not only that, he invit­ed me to his room upstairs to see some pic­tures. I did go, I went to his room. I want­ed to see how far a gov­ern­ment inves­ti­ga­tor would go and what they were try­ing to do to a wit­ness. . . . He showed me pic­tures, he made advances, yes, but I told him he was crazy.’ Liebler was­n’t through. To show her what kind of oper­a­tion the Com­mis­sion real­ly was, he told her that they had seen her pic­ture and joked about it at the War­ren Com­mis­sion. They said things like what a pret­ty girl you are going to see Jim. . . . For HSCA staff lawyer Bill Triplett told this author that the rea­son that chair­man Earl War­ren did not believe Sylvia Odio is that she was some kind of a ‘loose woman.’ . . .” (pp. 352–353.)
14.–The lin­guis­tic capa­bil­i­ties of the “Oswald” who alleged­ly was con­tact­ing the Cuban and Sovi­et embassies in Mex­i­co City are con­tra­dic­to­ry: ” . . . . it has Oswald speak­ing flu­ent Span­ish, which no one has ever said Oswald did. Fur­ther, the HSCA report says that Oswald spoke poor, bro­ken Russ­ian. Yet both Mari­na Oswald and George DeMohren­schildt said Oswald spoke Russ­ian quite well upon his return to the Unit­ed States. Fur­ther, pro­fes­sion­al trans­la­tor Peter Gre­go­ry thought Oswald was flu­ent enough to give him a let­ter cer­ti­fy­ing Oswald’s abil­i­ty to serve as a trans­la­tor. . . .” (p. 353.)
15.–The “Oswald” pho­tographed in Mex­i­co City was obvi­ous­ly an impos­tor: ” . . . . The CIA had mul­ti­ple still cam­eras set up out­side the Cuban embassy in Mex­i­co City to catch every­one com­ing out of and going inside in order to secure a visa to Cuba. When, at the request of the Com­mis­sion, the FBI asked the CIA for a pho­to of Oswald enter­ing the con­sulate, they got Com­missin Exhib­it 237. This is a pic­ture of a husky six foot­er with a crew-cut. Obvi­ous­ly not Oswald. . . . In Owald’s com­bined five vis­its to the Cuban con­sulate and Sovi­et con­sulate, the bat­tery of CIA cam­eras failed to get even one pic­ture of him enter­ing or leav­ing. In oth­er words, they were zero for ten. And the cam­era right out­side the Cuban con­sulate was pulse acti­vat­ed. . . . ” (pp. 353–354.)
16.–Both David Phillips and his assis­tant Anne Good­pas­ture were involved in mul­ti­ple obfus­ca­tions of the facts: ” . . . . Anne Good­pas­ture was in charge of the ‘dai­ly take’ from both tar­get embassies. That is the pho­tographs tak­en from out­side and the clan­des­tine tape record­ings made from inside the com­pounds. This is impor­tant because she then would have been the first per­son to see a pho­to of Oswald. There­fore, she should have sent for a pho­to of Oswald from Lan­g­ley in a time­ly man­ner while Oswald was still in Mex­i­co City. She did not. . . .” (p. 354.)
17.–Next, we high­light more of Phillip­s’s obstruc­tion of the inves­ti­ga­tion: ” . . . . Phillips said that they had no audio tapes because they ‘recy­cled their tapes every sev­en or eight days.’ The tapes were actu­al­ly recy­cled every ten days. But they were held for a longer time if so request­ed. Fur­ther, if any Amer­i­can cit­i­zen spoke bro­ken Russ­ian inside the Sovi­et con­sulate, the tape would be sent to Wash­ing­ton. Because he would be con­sid­ered of pos­si­ble oper­a­tional inter­est to the Sovi­ets. . . . Phillips also told [HSCA coun­sel Robert] Tanen­baum that the rea­son the CIA did not have a pho­to of Oswald was because their cam­era was out that day. This appears to be anoth­er lie. First of all, Oswald went to the Sovi­et con­sulate on two dif­fer­ent days, the twen­ty-sev­enth and twen­ty-eighth. So all three of the cam­eras cov­er­ing the site would have had to have been out on both days. . . .” (p. 354.)
18.–Phillips also dis­sem­bled con­cern­ing a cable sent to CIA head­quar­ters: ” . . . . The sur­veil­lance of the Russ­ian con­sulate revealed that by Octo­ber 1, the CIA knew that “Oswald” was in direct con­tact with those who worked there, such as Valery Kostikov of the KGB. But yet, the cable alert­ing head­quar­ters to this fact did not arrive until a week lat­er, Octo­ber 8, Phillips tried to explain this delay by blam­ing the trans­la­tors. He then said he knew that this was the case since he signed off on the cable. Hard­way and Lopez found out that Phillips did not sign off on the cable, since it did not deal in any way with Cuban mat­ters. But even worse, he could not have signed off on it because he was not in Mex­i­co City at the time. The like­ly rea­son the cable was sent out so late was to keep Oswald’s pro­file low while he was alleged­ly in Mex­i­co City. . . .” (pp. 354–355.)
19.–Oswald’s file at CIA began to be bifur­cat­ed: ” . . . . On or about Sep­tem­ber 23, Angle­ton began to bifur­cate Oswald’s file. the FBI reports on Oswald’s Fair Play for Cuba Com­mit­tee activ­i­ties in New Orleans went into a new oper­a­tional file, sep­a­rate from his 201 file. There­fore, the bizarre things Oswald was doing in New Orleans . . . .were all kept out of his 201 file. So when the late arriv­ing cable final­ly did come into CIA HQ from Mex­i­co City about Oswald in the Sovi­et con­sulate, this was kept sep­a­rate from his New Orleans activ­i­ties. Then two dif­fer­ent cables were sent out on Octo­ber 10. One was sent to the Bureau, the State Depart­ment, and the Navy, describ­ing a man who does­n’t fit Oswald’s descrip­tion: he is thir­ty-five years old, has an ath­let­ic build, and stands six feet tall. This descrip­tion resem­bles the Mys­tery Man pho­to. . . .” (pp. 355–356.)
20.–An alto­geth­er remark­able and reveal­ing aspect of the “Oswald” in Mex­i­co City gam­bit con­cerns the FBI’s “FLASH” notice on Oswald: ” . . . . Oswald was not placed on the FBI’s Secu­ri­ty Index list which was passed on to the Secret Ser­vice in advance of Kennedy’s vis­it to Dal­las. If he had been on that list, the Secret Ser­vice would have made sure he was not on the motor­cade route, since he con­sti­tut­ed a clear risk to Pres­i­dent Kennedy. One rea­son he was not on the list is because the FBI “FLASH” on Oswald, which had been in effect since his defec­tion in 1959 was removed. This warn­ing required any infor­ma­tion or inquiry on the sub­ject to e imme­di­ate­ly for­ward­ed to the Espi­onage Sec­tion of Divi­sion Five, the Domes­tic Intel­li­gence unit. Incred­i­bly, the “FLASH” was can­celed on Octo­ber 9, 1963. In oth­er words, after being attached to Oswald’s file for four years, it was removed just hours after he cable from Mex­i­co City arrived in Wash­ing­ton report­ing Oswald’s vis­it to the Sovi­et com­pound and meet­ing with Kostikov . . . .” (p. 356.)
21.–In light of Valery Kostikov’s iden­ti­ty, the FBI’s behav­ior is more than a lit­tle inter­est­ing: ” . . . . Kostikov’s true iden­ti­ty was revealed. His was the KGB unit respon­si­ble for assas­si­na­tions in the West­ern Hemi­sphere. After being method­i­cal­ly lulled to sleep . . . this infor­ma­tion must have felt like a hard punch to the jaw. Oswald had met with the KGB rep­re­sen­ta­tive for assas­si­na­tion sev­en weeks before Kennedy arrived in Dal­las. Yet, he was allowed to be in the build­ing behind where the Pres­i­den­t’s lim­ou­sine would be dri­ving. And no one in the FBI or Secret Ser­vice did any­thing for near­ly two months. The dia­bol­i­cal trap had been sprung. Hoover had no choice. He went into CYA over­drive. . . .” (p. 357.)
22.–In response to a tele­phoned ques­tion from Lyn­don Baines John­son, Hoover revealed that his agents had heard the tapes of “Oswald” speak­ing and seen the pho­tographs of “Oswald” vis­it­ing the Mex­i­co City diplo­mat­ic posts, but that nei­ther the calls, nor the pic­ture was the real Lee Har­vey Oswald. ” . . . . Hoover replied that this was all very con­fus­ing. He said that they had a tape and a pho­to of a man who was at the Sovi­et con­sulate using Oswald’s name. But, ‘That pic­ture and the tape do not cor­re­spond to this man’s voice, nor to his appear­ance. In oth­er words, it appears that there is a sec­ond per­son who was at the Sovi­et Embassy down there.’ On that same day, Hoover wrote a mem­o­ran­dum in which he said that two FBI agents who had been ques­tion­ing Oswald heard this tape and con­clud­ed that the voice on the tape was not Oswald’s. . . .” (p. 357.)
23.–In order to resolve the con­tra­dic­tions that the FBI had high­light­ed about “Oswald” in Mex­i­co City, the lie was gen­er­at­ed that the tapes had been destroyed before the assas­si­na­tion. Yet, Stan­ley Wat­son demon­strat­ed oth­er­wise: ” . . . . CIA offi­cer and Deputy Sta­tion Chief Stan­ley Wat­son tes­ti­fied to the HSCA that at least one record­ing exist­ed after the assas­si­na­tion. Fur­ther, the man who was first in charge of the CIA’s inquiry for the War­ren Com­mis­sion, John Whit­ten, wrote that while some tapes had been erased, some of ‘the actu­al tapes were also reviewed,’ and that anoth­er copy of the Octo­ber 1 ‘inter­cept on Lee Oswald’ had been ‘dis­cov­ered after the assas­si­na­tion. . . .” (p. 358.)
24.–In 1971, after the death of for­mer Mex­i­co City sta­tion chief Win­ston Scott, his wid­ow was threat­ened with removal of her sur­vivor ben­e­fits if she did not per­mit CIA coun­ter­in­tel­li­gence chief James Angle­ton access to her late hus­band’s safe: ” . . . . April 28, 1971 was the day after Janet Scott buried her hus­band Win­ston Scott. When she heard of Scot­t’s death, Anne Good­pas­ture told James Angle­ton about the con­tents of the for­mer Mex­i­co City sta­tion chief’s safe. On that day, on a mis­sion approved by Richard Helms, James Angle­ton flew to Mex­i­co City. He was in such a hur­ry that he for­got his pass­port. And if the record­ings were of the same false Oswald’s voice on tape, it would endan­ger the cov­er sto­ry about those tapes being destroyed pri­or to the assas­si­na­tion. After enter­ing the house, Angle­ton vague­ly threat­ened Janet’s wid­ow’s ben­e­fits. He then had scot­t’s safe emp­tied. The con­tents were shipped by plane to Lan­g­ley, Vir­ginia. The man most respon­si­ble for cre­at­ing first, the Oswald leg­end, then the design of the dooms­day sce­nario to the plot had now dis­posed of a last obstruc­tion to his hand­i­work. . . .” (p. 361.)


FTR #1050 Interview #19 with Jim DiEugenio about “Destiny Betrayed”

Guy Ban­is­ter employ­ee Tom­my Baum­ler: ” . . . . what­ev­er hap­pens, the Shaw case will end with­out pun­ish­ment for him [Shaw], because fed­er­al pow­er will see to that.”

This is the nine­teenth of a planned long series of inter­views with Jim DiEu­ge­nio about his tri­umphal analy­sis of Pres­i­dent Kennedy’s assas­si­na­tion and New Orleans Dis­trict Attor­ney Jim Gar­rison’s hero­ic inves­ti­ga­tion of the killing.

In the con­text of the then CIA direc­tor Richard Helms’ memo that Gar­rison’s should be neu­tral­ized before, dur­ing and after the Clay Shaw tri­al, we high­light the media attacks against Gar­ri­son that con­tin­ued after the tri­al.

The media hit pieces con­tin­ued dur­ing Gar­rison’s attempt at try­ing Clay Shaw for per­jury.  Look mag­a­zine did a hit piece on Gar­ri­son fea­tur­ing many of the “Usu­al Sus­pects,” includ­ing William  Gur­vich, one of the infil­tra­tors into Jim Gar­rison’s inves­tiga­tive tri­al who then col­lab­o­rat­ed with Shaw’s defense team.

Offi­cial­ly the piece was writ­ten by War­ren Rogers, whose insti­tu­tion­al affil­i­a­tions bear relat­ing:

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 313.

. . . . Rogers, like Phe­lan and Sandy Smith, was a reli­able asset of the FBI. That is, he could be con­tact­ed to do favors for them when called upon. The pub­lic did not know this until the 1979 posthu­mous pub­li­ca­tion of William Sul­li­van’s book about the FBI called The Bureau. Sul­li­van had beena top ech­e­lon offi­cer in the FBI for many years. In his book there is a chap­ter enti­tled “Flack­ing for the Bureau.” List­ed as one of the reporters who would often write arti­cles with infor­ma­tion fed to them by the FBI was War­ren Rogers. . . .

Hunter Leake–in charge of CIA oper­a­tions in New Orleans–kept the tele­type machine they had installed dur­ing Shaw’s crim­i­nal tri­al  in place until after the pro­posed per­jury tri­al.

An alto­geth­er remark­able change of venue occurred, after Shaw’s lawyers had received copies of Gar­rison’s inves­tiga­tive doc­u­ments for Shaw’s per­jury tri­al! 

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 313.

. . . . After hav­ing been in receipt of Gar­rison’s brief­ing papers for the per­jury tri­al, Shaw’s attor­neys final­ly tried for a tem­po­rary restrain­ing order to stop Gar­rison’s case from pro­ceed­ing. This was ini­tial­ly denied. But then, on Jan­u­ary 18, 1971, the day the state tri­al was to begin, a motion for emer­gency relief was grant­ed. This was unusu­al because the fed­er­al judi­cia­ry does not often inter­vene in state pros­e­cu­tions. But Shaw’s lawyers wrote that Shaw would suf­fer “grave and irrepara­ble injury” as the result of the state per­jury case which had been brought in “bad faith” and “in fur­ther­ance of Gar­rison’s scheme of harass­ment and intim­i­da­tion.” A hear­ing on whether or not to grant the pre­lim­i­nary injunc­tion was set for Jan­u­ary 25, 1971, just one week after the state tri­al was to begin. In oth­er words, Shaw’s lawyers need­ed almost no prepa­ra­tion time for the new venue and the new hear­ing, which they like­ly had been prepar­ing for in advance, since they had an inti­ma­tion that they would be suc­cess­ful in switch­ing the venue.

They were count­ing on Her­bert Chris­ten­ber­ry. Chris­ten­ber­ry was the fed­er­al judge who presided over this hear­ing. To under­stand what hap­pened thee, one must under­stand who Chris­ten­ber­ry was. . . .

In 1935, Louisiana gov­er­nor Huey Long was assas­si­nat­ed, and Her­bert Chris­ten­ber­ry cov­ered for the true con­spir­a­tors, who were a group of oper­a­tors from Stan­dard Oil, who were plot­ting to take over the reigns of the Louisiana state gov­ern­ment.

Chris­ten­ber­ry and his wife Car­o­line were friends and sup­port­ers of Clay Shaw!

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; pp. 315–316.

. . . . The oth­er piece of infor­ma­tion that helps elu­ci­date what Chris­ten­ber­ry did was found in the Nation­al Archives as part of Shaw’s per­son­al papers. It is a let­ter from Chris­ten­ber­ry’s  wife Car­o­line to Shaw which was sent a week after his acquit­tal. It begins like this: “Our most sin­cere con­grat­u­la­tions! We shared your anx­i­eties over the past two out­ra­geous years.” The read­er should note the wife’s sen­ti­ments. Te note goes on with: “Should your case have even­tu­al­ly found its way to Fed­er­al Court and been allot­ted to my hus­band you most cer­tain­ly would have had a fair tri­al. He felt we should not risk the pos­si­ble of being con­sid­ered ‘prej­u­diced’ in advance. This is our rea­son for not open­ly express­ing these sen­ti­ments ear­li­er.’ As if Shaw did not have a fair tri­al the first time around? The read­er should note the quotes around the word prej­u­diced. That usage and the sen­tence’s mean­ing clear­ly denotes that Chris­ten­ber­ry was fero­cious­ly biased for Shaw and against Gar­ri­son. But he did not want any­one to know that. . . . the fact that this was sent in 1969 clear­ly influ­enced his lawyers’ strat­e­gy for the per­jury case. . . . .

. . . . The three day hear­ing might have been script­ed by Hugh Aynesworth. . . . For exam­ple, William Gur­vich was allowed to tes­ti­fy as to the fraud­u­lence of Gar­rison’s inves­ti­ga­tion. . . . Gar­ri­son, not Shaw, was actu­al­ly placed on the wit­ness stand and asked to explain why he ever called in Shaw for ques­tion­ing in the first place. In oth­er words, at the Weg­manns’ request, Chris­ten­ber­ry was ask­ing the DA to give away his planned upcom­ing case against the defen­dant. . . .

After the fore­gone con­clu­sion of the Shaw per­jury tri­al, the Richard Helms/CIA direc­tive to neu­tral­ize Gar­ri­son after the Clay Shaw tri­al con­tin­ued to be man­i­fest­ed. Gar­ri­son was framed for alleged­ly tak­ing kick­backs from an ille­gal pay­off scheme from orga­nized-crime linked pin­ball machine oper­a­tors. Key points about this gam­bit:

1.–The recruit­ing by the gov­ern­ment of Per­sh­ing Ger­vais to con­coct pho­ny “evi­dence” against Gar­ri­son.
2.–Garrison’s cross-exam­i­na­tion of the pin­ball oper­a­tors and the deter­mi­na­tion that the evi­dence against him was nonex­is­tent. None of the oper­a­tors tes­ti­fied to pay­ing Gar­rri­son and/or his assis­tants any mon­ey or even know­ing him.
3.–Gervais was shipped to Cana­da and giv­en a job at Gen­er­al Motors, as well as an annu­al stipend from the Jus­tice Depart­ment!
4.–The tapes Ger­vais had alleged­ly made of Gar­ri­son while the for­mer was wear­ing a wire were deter­mined to be pho­ny.
5.–The sums Ger­vais claimed to have moved from Gar­ri­son were not even con­sis­tent with­in the var­i­ous accounts that he gave.
6.–Pershing even­tu­al­ly “rolled over” on the gov­ern­ment, admit­ting that he was recruit­ed in a crim­i­nal enter­prise by the gov­ern­ment to frame Gar­ri­son.

Per­haps the most effec­tive, long-last­ing ele­ment in the post-Shaw tri­al destruc­tion of Jim Gar­ri­son was the elec­tion of Jus­tice Depart­ment offi­cial Har­ry Con­nick to suc­ceed Gar­ri­son as DA.

Key points of dis­cus­sion and analy­sis about Con­nick:

1.–He was seem­ing­ly omnipresent in Clay Shaw’s crim­i­nal tri­al, oper­at­ing to obstruct Gar­ri­son and aid Clay Shaw and the Fed­er­al Gov­ern­ment for which he  worked.
2.–Station WDSU–very close to Clay Shaw and the vehi­cle for both the Wal­ter Sheri­dan dis­in­for­ma­tion hit piece on Jim Gar­ri­son and the Ed Butler/Carlos Bringuier inter­view of the “Com­mu­nist” Oswald–was active on behalf of Con­nick.
3.–The Gur­vich broth­ers, who infil­trat­ed Gar­rison’s inves­ti­ga­tion and net­worked with Clay Shaw’s defense team (with William appear­ing as a wit­ness in the hear­ing on Shaw’s per­jury tri­al), were active on behalf of Har­ry Con­nick.
4.–Clay Shaw him­self, as well as DRE oper­a­tive Car­los Bringuier con­tributed to Con­nick­’s elec­tion cam­paign.
5.–In his sec­ond cam­paign to replace Gar­ri­son, Con­nick was suc­cess­ful.
6.–After becom­ing New Orleans DA, he burned many of Gar­rison’s files.

Even­tu­al­ly, the mon­ey Gar­ri­son sup­pos­ed­ly gar­nered from the pho­ny pin­ball oper­a­tor kick­back scheme led to an IRS charge of income tax eva­sion. Gar­ri­son was acquit­ted.

Clay Shaw filed a nui­sance law­suit against Gar­ri­son for slander/defamation, which was ter­mi­nat­ed by Clay Shaw’s death, despite the Weg­manns’ attempts at per­pet­u­at­ing it even after their client was deceased.

James Phe­lan’s pro­tege James Kirk­wood con­tin­ued the media assault on Gar­ri­son with the pub­li­ca­tion of his book Amer­i­can Grotesque, which mis­rep­re­sent­ed the Gar­ri­son inves­ti­ga­tion.


FTR #1049 Interview #18 with Jim DiEugenio about “Destiny Betrayed”

Guy Ban­is­ter employ­ee Tom­my Baum­ler: ” . . . . what­ev­er hap­pens, the Shaw case will end with­out pun­ish­ment for him [Shaw], because fed­er­al pow­er will see to that.”

This is the eigh­teenth of a planned long series of inter­views with Jim DiEu­ge­nio about his tri­umphal analy­sis of Pres­i­dent Kennedy’s assas­si­na­tion and New Orleans Dis­trict Attor­ney Jim Gar­rison’s hero­ic inves­ti­ga­tion of the killing.

This inter­view con­tin­ues with the analy­sis of Clay Shaw’s tri­al.

Exem­pli­fy­ing the pow­er that was mar­shaled on behalf of Clay Shaw was the treat­ment accord­ed FBI agent Reg­is Kennedy.

Not only did the Depart­ment of Jus­tice inter­cede ahead of time to lim­it Kennedy’s tes­ti­mo­ny, but Nixon’s Attor­ney Gen­er­al John Mitchell “severe­ly cur­tailed” his tes­ti­mo­ny “mid-tri­al.”

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 298.

. . . . The only wit­ness that Gar­ri­son was able to pro­duce to inquire into the offi­cial inves­ti­ga­tion of the assas­si­na­tion in New Orleans was FBI agent Reg­is Kennedy. And even then, by pri­or arrange­ment with the Jus­tice Depart­ment, Kennedy would only tes­ti­fy about a cer­tain area of his inquiry, name­ly his inter­view with Dean Andrews and his con­se­quent search for Clay Bertrand. This lim­i­ta­tion hurt the DA since Kennedy was a rel­e­vant wit­ness to oth­er aspects of the case. For instance, along with sev­er­al oth­ers, he had been a mem­ber of the Friends of Demo­c­ra­t­ic Cuba group set up by Guy Ban­is­ter and William Dalzell. Fur­ther, there were wit­ness­es who put Kennedy in Banister’s office. There­fore, what Kennedy could have told the court about Ban­is­ter, Fer­rie, their asso­ci­a­tion with the Cubans–especially Ser­gio Art­cacha Smith–and Oswald, was very like­ly con­sid­er­able. But he was not allowed to tes­ti­fy about any of those impor­tant mat­ters. Con­se­quent­ly, when Alcock asked him if he was involved with the inves­ti­ga­tion into Pres­i­dent Kennedy’s death pri­or to his inter­view with Andrews, Kennedy said he was not sure if he could answer that ques­tion. The dis­cus­sion then went inside the judge’s cham­bers. Con­nick then called Wash­ing­ton. After this, the jury was called back inside. Alcock then asked Kennedy if, pri­or to his inter­view with Andrews, had he been engaged in the inquiry into Pres­i­dent Kennedy’s assas­si­na­tion. Kennedy replied in the affir­ma­tive. Alcock then was allowed to ask the fol­low-op ques­tion, which relat­ed to the first: Was Kennedy seek­ing Clay Bertrand in con­nec­tion with his over­all inves­ti­ga­tion into the assas­si­na­tion. Kennedy said that he was.

There was a code to all this that Alcock could not have known about. But it was part of the rea­son that Attor­ney Gen­er­al John Mitchell severe­ly cur­tailed Reg­is Kennedy’s tes­ti­mo­ny in mid-tri­al. . . .

A major ele­ment in the tes­ti­mo­ny dur­ing Clay Shaw’s tri­al was the tes­ti­mo­ny of autop­sy sur­geon Army Lieu­tenant Colonel Pierre Finck. The autop­sy was being con­trolled by one of the high-rank­ing mil­i­tary offi­cers present at the pro­ce­dure.

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 300.

. . . . Finck replied that he was not run­ning the autop­sy, it was Com­man­der James Humes. When Oser asked if Humes was actu­al­ly in charge, Finck made a dis­clo­sure which lit­er­al­ly changed the face of the autop­sy evi­dence for­ev­er. And it should have rocked the news media if [media hatch­et man James] Phe­lan had not been con­trol­ling it. Finck replied that Humes actu­al­ly stopped and asked, “Who is in charge here?” Finck then said he heard an Army Gen­er­al say, “I am.” Finck then added, “You must under­stand that in those cir­cum­stances, there were law enforce­ment offi­cials, mil­i­tary peo­ple with var­i­ous ranks, and you have to coor­di­nate the oper­a­tions accord­ing to direc­tions”. . . .

Then, Jim notes that Alvin Oser had to ask Finck eight times as to why Finck did not dis­sect the track of the neck wound. Finck­’s response–that he was ordered not to do so by one of the high-rank­ing offi­cers present, is proof of a con­spir­a­cy.

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 302.

. . . . [Alvin] Oser then moved on to anoth­er key issue that exposed the pathol­o­gists as pawns. A very impor­tant point about the autop­sy is its fail­ure to con­vinc­ing­ly prove direc­tion­al­i­ty. That is, from which direc­tion did the bul­lets enter the body? There have always been seri­ous queries about whether the wound in Kennedy’s throat was an entrance or exit wound. If that wound was one of entrance, then Kennedy was shot at least once from the front. That shot could not have been from Oswald, there­fore the mur­der was a con­spir­a­cy. What makes this pos­si­bil­i­ty very real is that Mal­colm Per­ry said dur­ing a tele­vised press con­fer­ence on Novem­ber 22 that the throat wound was one of entrance. He repeat­ed this three times that day. Since he did the tra­cheoto­my right over that wound, he should cer­tain­ly know. The best way to have proven this point once and for all was to have dis­sect­ed the wound track. Amaz­ing­ly, this was not done. When Oser tried to find out why it was not done, Finck used every eva­sion he could to avoid answer­ing the ques­tion. Going over the tran­script of this exchange is a bit star­tling. The read­er will find that Oser had to pose the ques­tion eight sep­a­rate times. It got so bad that Oser even had to request that the judge direct the wit­ness to answer the ques­tion. Finck final­ly answered with, “As I recall I was told not to, but I don’t remem­ber by whom.” Again, some­one was con­trol­ling the pathol­o­gy team in a way that pre­vent­ed them from doing a full and cor­rect autop­sy. . . . Fur­ther, the fact that the doc­tors were ordered not to track the wound indi­cat­ed the mil­i­tary brass may have been try­ing to cov­er this point up. . . .

One of Gar­rison’s strongest weapons in his coun­ter­at­tack against the forces run­ning inter­fer­ence on behalf of Shaw and oth­ers involved in the assas­si­na­tion was the Zaprud­er film, which clear­ly shows Kennedy’s body being thrown back and to the left, indi­cat­ing a shot from the front.

Media hatch­et man James Phe­lan who, like Wal­ter Sheri­dan and Hugh Aynesworth worked with the intel­li­gence ser­vices, became a defense wit­ness for Clay Shaw and also played what was, in effect, a supervisory/PR role in pre­sid­ing over a con­sor­tium of jour­nal­ists cov­er­ing the Shaw tri­al.

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; pp. 289–290.

. . . . That jour­nal­is­tic duo, Phe­lan and Ayneswoth, were both on the scene: Phe­lan as a wit­ness for the defense and Aynesworth to help Shaw’s attor­neys. An odd thing about this was that nei­ther man had any osten­si­ble writ­ing assign­ment at the time. But it turned out that Phe­lan had a very spe­cial func­tion for his back­ers. Most reporters in town to cov­er the pro­ceed­ings rent­ed a hotel room, but not Phe­lan. Phe­lan rent­ed a house. Why would he do such a thing if he was not there to write a sto­ry? because his was a much big­ger assign­ment. His job was to put the spin on each day’s tes­ti­mo­ny for the resid­ing press corps, there­by con­trol­ling the entire nation­al media reportage on the Shaw tri­al. How did he do such a thing? He would invite all the reporters over to his rent­ed house at the end of each day. He would then serve them refresh­ments and snacks. He then would spell out the next day’s sto­ry on a chalk­board. This is how some of the most inter­est­ing and impor­tant tes­ti­mo­ny pre­sent­ed dur­ing the pro­ceed­ings got cov­ered up by the media. On the day the Zaprud­er film was shown, Phe­lan had his work cut out for him. For the repeat­ed show­ing of the film was shown, Phe­lan had his work cut out for him. For the repeat­ed show­ing of the film—depicting Kennedy’s body being vio­lent­ly knocked back—really shook up the press. It appeared Gar­ri­son was right, it was a con­spir­a­cy. But when they arrived at Phe­lan’s rent­ed house, the reporter pulled a prover­bial rab­bit out of his hat. He took out his chalk­board, raised up his piece of chalk, and he began to out­line the dynam­ics of the so-called “jet-effect” expla­na­tion for the action of the film. That is, if Oswald was fir­ing from behind Kennedy, why does Kennedy’s body recoil with tremen­dous force to the rear of the car? What Phe­lan and the jet effect prof­fer is that some­how, the spurt­ing of blood and brains served as a jet that drove Kennedy’s head back­ward with over­pow­er­ing force. This is how deter­mined Phe­lan was to keep a lid on what came out of the tri­al. . . .

In our pre­vi­ous pro­gram, we high­light­ed the attempt on book­ing offi­cer Aloy­sius Habighorst’s life on the eve of his tes­ti­mo­ny in the Clay Shaw tri­al. When he tes­ti­fied, Judge Hag­ger­ty refused to allow his tes­ti­mo­ny into evi­dence.

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; pp. 306–308.

. . . . When Shaw was first arrest­ed in March of 1967, Habighorst had han­dled the book­ing. Before hav­ing him sign the fin­ger­print card, the offi­cer had rou­tine­ly asked if the defen­dant had ever used an alias. Appar­ent­ly unset­tled by his arrest, Shaw had replied “Clay Bertrand.” Habighorst typed this on the card and Shaw signed it. Alcock now want­ed to admit both the card and the officer’s tes­ti­mo­ny as evi­dence into the tri­al. This seemed pow­er­ful, damn­ing evi­dence because it came right out of Shaw’s mouth and hand. . . .The prosecution’s protes­ta­tions fell on deaf ears. Judge Hag­ger­ty would not allow the evi­dence. . . .

Alcock leaped out of his chair. His face red and his voice cracked with emo­tion. “Your Hon­or. Are you rul­ing on the cred­i­bil­i­ty of offi­cer Habighorst?” . . . .

. . . . “The whole world can hear that I do not believe Offi­cer Habighorst. . . . .”

“I demand a mis­tri­al,” Alcock shout­ed. “A judge’s unso­licit­ed com­ment on evi­dence . . . .”

“Denied,” said Hag­ger­ty. . . .

The pro­gram con­cludes with dis­cus­sion of Har­ry Con­nick­’s destruc­tion of Gar­rison’s files and of the gov­ern­men­t’s efforts to dis­cred­it Gari­son. This will be tak­en up at greater length in our next pro­gram.


FTR #1048 Interview #17 with Jim DiEugenio about “Destiny Betrayed”

Guy Ban­is­ter employ­ee Tom­my Baum­ler: ” . . . . what­ev­er hap­pens, the Shaw case will end with­out pun­ish­ment for him [Shaw], because fed­er­al pow­er will see to that.”

This is the sev­en­teenth of a planned long series of inter­views with Jim DiEu­ge­nio about his tri­umphal analy­sis of Pres­i­dent Kennedy’s assas­si­na­tion and New Orleans Dis­trict Attor­ney Jim Gar­rison’s hero­ic inves­ti­ga­tion of the killing.

In this pro­gram, we pro­ceed into New Orleans’ DA Jim Gar­rison’s actu­al tri­al of Clay Shaw.

Before going into the tri­al, per se, we high­light the “turn­ing” of The New Orleans States-Item. This “turn­ing” fea­tures one of the prin­ci­pal infil­tra­tors into Gar­rison’s office, William Gur­vich.

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 275.

. . . . From this inter­view [with Tom­my Baum­ler], what appears to have hap­pened is that the CIA sent some­one into New Orleans to impact pub­lic opin­ion about Gar­ri­son. This may have been occa­sioned by a let­ter for­ward­ed to CIA HQ to Lloyd Ray of the local New Orleans office. . . . William Gur­vich, now work­ing with Shaw’s lawyers, vis­it­ed the offices of The New Orleans States-Item. Ross Yock­ey and Hoke May had been seri­ous­ly inves­ti­gat­ing the Shaw case. And they had been doing that in a fair and judi­cious man­ner. They had uncov­ered some inter­est­ing facts about how Gor­don Novel’s lawyers were being paid. After Gurvich’s vis­it, the States-Item pulled Yock­ey and May from the Gar­ri­son beat. When this author inter­viewed Yock­ey in 1995, he said that after this, he was then assigned to cov­er­ing high school foot­ball games. With the States-Item now neu­tral­ized, the cov­er­age in New Orleans now became imbal­anced. . . .

Jim titled the chap­ter ded­i­cat­ed to the tri­al “Anti-Cli­max.” It was indeed an anti-cli­max after Gar­ri­son was sub­ject­ed to the irre­sistible engine of the syn­the­sis of: the intel­li­gence com­mu­ni­ty, their lone-wolf oper­a­tors infil­trat­ing his office, those infil­tra­tors’ net­work­ing with the intel­li­gence com­mu­ni­ty’s media hatch­et men ded­i­cat­ed to smear­ing Gar­ri­son pub­licly, Clay Shaw’s defense team and the Jus­tice Depart­ment.

Gar­rison’s inves­ti­ga­tion was sub­ject­ed to an onslaught, includ­ing out­right, state-spon­sored ter­ror direct­ed at wit­ness­es.

A syn­op­tic overview of the wit­ness­es and their sig­nif­i­cance:

1.–Richard Case Nagell–A U.S. intel­li­gence oper­a­tive infil­trat­ed into Sovi­et intel­li­gence, and then assigned by KGB to assas­si­nate Oswald, whom they knew was to be a pat­sy in an assas­si­na­tion plot against JFK for which they would be blamed.
2.–Reverend Clyde Johnson–A right-wing activist who was wit­ness to Clay Shaw and a “Jack Rubion” net­work­ing togeth­er against JFK.
3.–Aloysius Habighorst–A good New Orleans cop who was the book­ing offi­cer for Clay Shaw, when Shaw vol­un­teered that he used the alias “Clay Bertrand.”
4.–Edwin McGehee–One of the wit­ness­es con­nect­ing Clay Shaw to Oswald and David Fer­rie in Clin­ton, Louisiana.
5.–Reeves Morgan–Another of the wit­ness­es con­nect­ing Clay Shaw to Oswald and David Fer­rie in Clin­ton, Louisiana.

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 294.

. . . . Before and dur­ing the tri­al, Garrison’s wit­ness­es were being sur­veilled, harassed, and phys­i­cal­ly attacked. For instance, Richard Case Nag­ell had a grenade thrown at him from a speed­ing car in New York. Nag­ell brought the remains of the grenade to Gar­ri­son and told him he did not think it wise for him to tes­ti­fy at Shaw’s tri­al. Even though Gar­ri­son had spir­it­ed Clyde John­son out of town and very few peo­ple knew where he was, the FBI’s total sur­veil­lance even­tu­al­ly paid off. He was bru­tal­ly beat­en on the eve of the tri­al and hos­pi­tal­ized. Aloy­sius Habighorst, the man who booked Shaw and heard him say his alias was Bertrand, was rammed by a truck the day before he tes­ti­fied. After he tes­ti­fied, Edwin McGe­hee found a prowler on his front lawn. he called the mar­shal, and the man was arrest­ed. At the sta­tion, the man asked to make one phone call. The call he made was to the Inter­na­tion­al Trade Mart. After he tes­ti­fied, Reeves Mor­gan had the win­dows shot out of his truck. What makes all this vio­lent intim­i­da­tion more star­tling is what Robert Tanen­baum stat­ed to the author in an inter­view for Probe Mag­a­zine. He said that he had seen a set of doc­u­ments that orig­i­nat­ed in the office of Richard Helms. They revealed that the CIA was mon­i­tor­ing and harass­ing Gar­rison’s wit­ness­es. . . .

The vio­lent harass­ment of the wit­ness­es may be viewed against the back­drop of Tom Bethell and Sal Panze­ca.

Shaw attor­ney Sal Panze­ca received a list of Gar­ri­son wit­ness­es from Gar­ri­son office infil­tra­tor Tom Bethell.

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 290.

. . . . Tom Bethell had been one of the DA’s key inves­ti­ga­tors and researchers . . . . Since Gar­ri­son had des­ig­nat­ed him as his chief archivist, he had access to and con­trol of both Gar­rison’s files and his most recent wit­ness list. . . . Secret­ly, he met with Sal Panze­ca, one of Shaw’s attor­neys, and gave him a wit­ness list he had pre­pared, with sum­maries of each wit­ness’s expect­ed tes­ti­mo­ny for the pros­e­cu­tion. . . .

Exem­pli­fy­ing the effec­tive neu­tral­iz­ing of wit­ness­es is the drum­beat of dis­cred­i­ta­tion and intim­i­da­tion of Per­ry Rus­so, a wit­ness to Shaw and Fer­rie dis­cussing plans to assas­si­nate JFK. By the time of Clay Shaw’s tri­al, Rus­so relent­ed and assent­ed to the canard that the Shaw/Ferrie assas­si­na­tion plan­ning was just a “bull ses­sion.”


FTR #1047 Interview #16 with Jim DiEugenio about “Destiny Betrayed”

This is the six­teenth of a planned long series of inter­views with Jim DiEu­ge­nio about his tri­umphal analy­sis of Pres­i­dent Kennedy’s assas­si­na­tion and New Orleans Dis­trict Attor­ney Jim Gar­rison’s hero­ic inves­ti­ga­tion of the killing.

The pro­gram opens with con­tin­u­a­tion of dis­cus­sion of an unfor­tu­nate piece from The Huff­in­g­ton Post about Clay Shaw. In addi­tion to par­rot­ing canards about Gar­rison’s case being base­less, Clay Shaw being a “Wilsonian/FDR lib­er­al” and Gar­rison’s nonex­is­tent stance that the JFK assas­si­na­tion was a “homo­sex­u­al thrill killing” by Clay Shaw & com­pa­ny, the HP piece men­tioned an appear­ance by Jim Gar­ri­son on John­ny Car­son­’s “Tonight Show.”

The actu­al sto­ry of Gar­rison’s appear­ance on Car­son is impor­tant and inter­est­ing. When the bril­liant come­di­an Mort Sahl was on Car­son­’s show, the sub­ject of the Gar­ri­son inves­ti­ga­tion came up. Sahl asked the audi­ence if they would like to have Gar­ri­son come on the show, and they respond­ed with over­whelm­ing enthu­si­asm.

Even­tu­al­ly, Gar­ri­son did appear on the show and Car­son engaged in an open­ly con­fronta­tion­al dis­cus­sion. Car­son was so out­raged that he told Mort Sahl that he would nev­er appear on the pro­gram again. Mort did not appear on the “Tonight” show until Jay Leno suc­ceed­ed Car­son as the host.

In this regard, it is worth not­ing that NBC–the net­work that aired Wal­ter Sheri­dan’s hit piece on Garrison–has pro­found con­nec­tions to the intel­li­gence com­mu­ni­ty, as dis­cussed in FTR #1045.

Jim also relates that, when in Los Ange­les, Robert Kennedy was query­ing Chi­na Lee–Mort’s wife at the time–about what Gar­ri­son was doing in New Orleans. As we have seen in past programs–including FTR #‘s 809, 892, 1005–Robert Kennedy was wait­ing until he got elect­ed Pres­i­dent before open­ing an inves­ti­ga­tion into his broth­er’s mur­der. Of course, he, too was killed before he could become Pres­i­dent.

The pro­gram then turns to James Kirk­wood, anoth­er of the des­ig­nat­ed media hatch­et men who pil­lo­ried Gar­ri­son. Net­worked with James Phe­lan, he helped mint the canard that Gar­ri­son pros­e­cut­ed Shaw in the con­text of what the DA sup­pos­ed­ly saw as a “homo­sex­u­al thrill killing.” Unfor­tu­nate­ly, this non­sense has endured, as a Huff­in­g­ton Post arti­cle makes clear.

Anoth­er of the media hit men who defamed Gar­ri­son was David Chan­dler:

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 276.

. . . . But Chandler’s most seri­ous blast against Gar­ri­son and his inquiry was a two-part arti­cle writ­ten for Life in the fall of 1967. This appeared in the Sep­tem­ber 1 and Sep­tem­ber 8 issues of the mag­a­zine. The pieces mas­quer­ad­ed as an expose of Mafia influ­ence in large cities in Amer­i­ca at the time. But the real tar­get of the piece was not the mob, but Gar­ri­son. The idea was to depict him as a cor­rupt New Orleans DA who had some kind of neb­u­lous ties to the Mafia and Car­los Mar­cel­lo. There were four prin­ci­pal par­tic­i­pants in the pieces: Chan­dler, Sandy Smith, Dick Billings, and Robert Blakey. Smith was the actu­al billed writer. And since Smith was a long-time asset of the FBI, it is very like­ly that the Bureau was the Bureau was the orig­i­nat­ing force behind the mag­a­zine run­ning the piece. . . .

. . . . It was the work of Chan­dler, a friend of both Clay Shaw and Ker­ry Thorn­ley, which was the basis of the com­plete­ly pho­ny con­cept that Gar­ri­son was some­how in bed with the Mafia and his func­tion was to steer atten­tion from their killing of Kennedy. . . .

The sub­ject then turns to Clay Shaw’s defense team. It should nev­er be for­got­ten that Shaw’s attor­neys net­worked with: the infil­tra­tors into Gar­rison’s office, the CIA and the media hatch­et men who helped destroy Gar­rison’s pub­lic image.

We return briefly to Guy John­son, ini­tial­ly a mem­ber of Shaw’s defense team. In this con­text, it is worth remem­ber­ing what Ban­is­ter inves­ti­ga­tor Tom­my Baum­ler said:

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 274.

. . . . In the spring of 1968, Harold Weis­berg inter­viewed Tom­my Baum­ler. Baum­ler had for­mer­ly worked for Guy Ban­is­ter as part of his corps of stu­dent infil­tra­tors in the New Orleans area. Because of that expe­ri­ence, Baum­ler knew a lot about Banister’s oper­a­tion. For instance, that Banister’s files were cod­ed, and that Ban­is­ter had black­mail mate­r­i­al on the sub­jects he kept files on. He also knew the intel­li­gence net­work in New Orleans was con­struct­ed through Ban­is­ter, Clay Shaw, and Guy John­son; how close Shaw and Ban­is­ter were; and that “Oswald worked for Ban­is­ter.” In Weisberg’s inter­view with Tom­my, he would occa­sion­al­ly ask to go off the record by telling him to turn the tape recorder off. Clear­ly, there were things going on in New Orleans that Baum­ler con­sid­ered too hot to be attrib­uted to him.

At this time, April of 1968, Weis­berg con­sid­ered Baum­ler to be an “unabashed fas­cist.” He explained this fur­ther by say­ing that Baum­ler was ‘aware of the mean­ing of his beliefs and con­sid­ers what he describes as his beliefs as prop­er.” He then explained to Weis­berg the fol­low­ing, “that what­ev­er hap­pens, the Shaw case will end with­out pun­ish­ment for him [Shaw], because fed­er­al pow­er will see to that.” He fur­ther said that this would also hap­pen to any­one else charged by Gar­ri­son. . . .

In addi­tion to John­son, Irv Dymond, anoth­er Shaw attor­ney, net­worked with the intel­li­gence com­mu­ni­ty, Wal­ter Sheri­dan and the spook infil­tra­tors into Gar­rion’s office. In FTR #1045, we not­ed that Fred Lee­mans claimed he was coerced, in part, direct­ly by Irv Dymond in Dymond’s law office. Dymond worked direct­ly with Hunter Leake of the CIA’s New Orleans office.

Shaw attor­neys Edward and William Weg­mann also net­worked with the intel­li­gence com­mu­ni­ty, employ­ing Wack­en­hut, for­mer­ly South­ern Research, an intel­li­gence-con­nect­ed pri­vate secu­ri­ty out­fit to mon­i­tor Gar­rison’s com­mu­ni­ca­tions.

Anoth­er Shaw attorney–Sal Panzeca–received a list of Gar­ri­son wit­ness­es from Gar­ri­son office infil­tra­tor Tom Bethell.

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 290.

. . . . Tom Bethell had been one of the DA’s key inves­ti­ga­tors and researchers . . . . Since Gar­ri­son had des­ig­nat­ed him as his chief archivist, he had access to and con­trol of both Gar­rison’s files and his most recent wit­ness list. . . . Secret­ly, he met with Sal Panze­ca, one of Shaw’s attor­neys, and gave him a wit­ness list he had pre­pared, with sum­maries of each wit­ness’s expect­ed tes­ti­mo­ny for the pros­e­cu­tion. . . .

The pro­gram con­cludes with the obstruc­tive efforts of then Attor­ney Gen­er­al Ram­sey Clark.

Clark tried to dis­miss Clay Shaw’s involve­ment inthe assas­si­na­tion by claim­ing that the FBI had cleared him back in 1963.

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 261.

. . . . One point man for the John­son Admin­is­tra­tion in dam­ag­ing Gar­rison’s case was Ram­sey Clark. In March of 1867, right after his con­fir­ma­tion as Attor­ney Gen­er­al by the Sen­ate Judi­cia­ry Com­mit­tee, Clark made an extra­or­di­nary inter­ven­tion into the case: he told a group of reporters Gar­rison’s case was base­less. The FBI, he said, had already inves­ti­gat­ed Shaw in 1963 and found no con­nec­tion between him and the events in Dal­las. . . .

Clark also assist­ed with the quash­ing of sub­poe­nas that Gar­ri­son served.

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; pp. 272–273.

. . . . At around this time, Gar­ri­son issued sub­poe­nas for both Richard Helms and any pho­tographs of Oswald in Mex­i­co City that the CIA held. . . . [CIA Gen­er­al Coun­sel Lawrence] Hous­ton then wrote a let­ter to New Orleans judge Bernard Bagert who had signed the sub­poe­na. He denied there were pho­tos of Oswald in Mex­i­co City. This reply was run by Attor­ney Gen­er­al Ram­sey Clark and White House advis­er Har­ry MacPher­son. . . .

Final­ly, Clark denied Gar­ri­son prop­er access to autop­sy pho­tos and infor­ma­tion about the assas­si­na­tion.

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; p. 287.

. . . . After the Attor­ney Gen­er­al had bun­gled his first attempt to dis­cred­it Gar­rison’s case, he secret­ly tried anoth­er method. Gar­ri­son had been try­ing to secure the orig­i­nal JFK autop­sy pho­tos and X‑rays to exhib­it at the tri­al. They would form an impor­tant part of his case, since, to prove a con­spir­a­cy, he had to present evi­dence against the War­ren Report, which main­tained there was no con­spir­a­cy and that Oswald had act­ed alone. In 1968, Clark con­vened a pan­el of experts–which did not include any of the doc­tors who had per­formed the orig­i­nal examinations–to review the autop­sy pho­tos and X‑rays. In ear­ly 1969, just a few days before he left office and on the eve of the tri­al, Clark announced that this pan­el had endorsed the find­ings of the War­ren Report. The pan­el released its find­ings, but none of the orig­i­nal evi­dence on which it was based. This was clear­ly meant to influ­ence pub­lic opin­ion before Shaw’s tri­al began. . . .


FTR #1046 Interview #15 with Jim DiEugenio About “Destiny Betrayed”

CIA’s Expert on the JFK Assas­si­na­tion Ray Roc­ca: ” . . . . Gar­ri­son would indeed obtain a con­vic­tion of Shaw for con­spir­ing to assas­si­nate Pres­i­dent Kennedy. . . .”

House Select Com­mit­tee on Assas­si­na­tions Assis­tant Coun­sel Jonathan Black­mer: “. . . . ‘We have rea­son to believe Shaw was heav­i­ly involved in the Anti-Cas­tro efforts in New Orleans in the 1960s and [was] pos­si­bly one of the high lev­el plan­ners or ‘cut out’ to the plan­ners of the assas­si­na­tion.’ . . . .”

 This is the fif­teenth of a planned long series of inter­views with Jim DiEu­ge­nio about his tri­umphal analy­sis of Pres­i­dent Kennedy’s assas­si­na­tion and New Orleans Dis­trict Attor­ney Jim Gar­rison’s hero­ic inves­ti­ga­tion of the killing.

This inter­view begins with an excerpt from the book that encap­su­lates the syn­the­sis of the intel­li­gence agen­cies, infil­tra­tors into Gar­rison’s inves­ti­ga­tion, media hatch­et men des­ig­nat­ed to destroy Gar­rison’s rep­u­ta­tion and Clay Shaw’s defense team.

Des­tiny Betrayed by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; Sky­horse Pub­lish­ing [SC]; Copy­right 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEu­ge­nio; ISBN 978–1‑62087–056‑3; pp. 228–229.

. . . . About Oswald, [Bernar­do] DeTor­res said he knew he had not killed Kennedy because DeTor­res knew the peo­ple who were actu­al­ly involved–and they were talk­ing about it before it hap­pened.

I have detailed the DeTor­res pen­e­tra­tion at length since it is impor­tant in order to under­stand what real­ly hap­pened to Jim Gar­ri­son. And also to reveal just how much was at stake for sus­pects like Bernar­do DeTor­res and his allies. As [HSCA inves­ti­ga­tor Gae­ton] Fonzi notes in his book, as the author found out from an inter­view, when Vic­tor Mar­che­t­ti was exec­u­tive assis­tant to CIA Direc­tor Richard Helms, Helms would run staff meet­ings about Agency oper­a­tions. Dur­ing these meet­ings, Mar­che­t­ti would take the offi­cial notes. At times, Helms would indi­cate he want­ed cer­tain things not tak­en down. At oth­er times, some­thing would come up, and Helms would cut off any fol­low-up by wav­ing his hand. He then would add that this sub­ject would be pur­sued fur­ther in his office, with Mar­che­t­ti not there to take notes. Mar­che­t­ti said that the Gar­ri­son inquiry and the Shaw tri­al came up more than once. Each time, Helms would ask what they were doing to help the defense. Fonzi lat­er found out that DeTorres’s pen­e­tra­tion was only the incep­tion of the CIA’s effort to tor­pe­do Gar­ri­son. For the HSCA lat­er dis­cov­ered through CIA doc­u­ments that there were nine under­cov­er agents at one time or anoth­er in Garrrison’s office. So, in addi­tion to what Mr. King had warned Gar­ri­son about, that is the neg­a­tiv­i­ty of the media which would now plague him until the end, there was some­thing that King left unsaid. But after he left, assis­tant Andrew Sci­ambra not­ed it to Gar­ri­son. He said, “Well, they offered you the car­rot, and you turned it down. You know what’s com­ing next don’t you?”

What we are about to describe in this chap­ter and the next is some­thing that nei­ther Gar­ri­son nor Sci­ambra could have like­ly imag­ined at the time. But with the aid of exten­sive inter­views, plus declas­si­fied doc­u­ments, for the first time we will now out­line a three stage pro­gram to decon­struct Garrison’s case and to make sure Shaw would be acquit­ted. This first stage began very ear­ly with DeTor­res, a man who–while work­ing with Mitch Werbell–may have been involved with Kennedy’s mur­der. But it will con­tin­ue with cer­tain oth­er “sin­gle­ton” pen­e­tra­tions by peo­ple like William Gur­vich and Gor­don Nov­el. The sec­ond stage of the effort will cen­ter around the wider efforts of for­mer Nation­al Secu­ri­ty Agency offi­cer Wal­ter Sheri­dan in alliance with the CIA and NBC. That effort was cou­pled with the work of intel­li­gence assets/journalists James Phe­lan and Hugh Aynesworth. When Gar­ri­son would still not give up, a third phase set in with two prongs to it. James Angleton’s office took over in Sep­tem­ber of 1967, and, as we have pre­viewed, Angleton’s endeav­or was then allied to, and expand­ed all the way up to Direc­tor Richard Helms in 1968 and 1969. With oper­a­tions that could even be dis­cussed in pub­lic or for the record. But which, as we shall see, HSCA Deputy Coun­sel Bob Tanen­baum saw cer­tain doc­u­ments about. . . .

Con­tin­u­ing and over­lap­ping analy­sis from the last pro­gram, we return to the sub­ject of vet­er­an intel­li­gence oper­a­tive Gor­don Nov­el, whom we have spo­ken of in past inter­views. In FTR #1044, we syn­op­sized Nov­el­’s activ­i­ties as a spook and as an infil­tra­tor into Gar­rison’s inves­ti­ga­tion: “One of the most impor­tant infil­tra­tors was Gor­don Nov­el, a vet­er­an CIA offi­cer, bril­liant elec­tron­ics expert and oper­a­tional asso­ciate of many of the peo­ple involved in Gar­rison’s probe. Nov­el had been involved with the Bay of Pigs and an arms bur­glary at a Schlum­berg­er facil­i­ty, some of the loot from which was stored at a rac­ing busi­ness owned in part by Nov­el. Oper­at­ing at the direc­tion of Allen Dulles, he infil­trat­ed Gar­rison’s inves­ti­ga­tion and bugged his office for the Agency. He also net­worked with the FBI to mon­i­tor Gar­rison’s probe. Nov­el also used his posi­tion inside Gar­rison’s probe to smear Gar­ri­son in pub­lic state­ments to the media. Nov­el was able to draw on large finan­cial reserves, the source of which is–technically speaking–opaque. At one point, he had five attor­neys work­ing on his behalf. That, in and of itself, would have required more mon­ey than Nov­el appeared to have at his dis­pos­al. Most sig­nif­i­cant­ly, Nov­el worked in tan­dem with Wal­ter Sheri­dan, a vet­er­an intel­li­gence oper­a­tive who pro­duced an alto­geth­er “spe­cial” for NBC about the Gar­ri­son inves­ti­ga­tion. . . .”

In this pro­gram, we not­ed Nov­el­’s work with the FBI, as well as CIA. Not­ing a bunch of appar­ent “hang­ers-on” around his res­i­dence, Nov­el real­ized that they were FBI. They were inter­est­ed in hav­ing him mon­i­tor Gar­ri­son for the bureau, which he did. Jim notes that the Wack­en­hut Cor­po­ra­tion (for­mer­ly South­ern Research) was also mon­i­tor­ing Gar­rison’s com­mu­ni­ca­tions. It was an out­growth of the FBI.

Sup­ple­ment­ing analy­sis of CIA Gar­ri­son infil­tra­tor William Mar­tin (also high­light­ed in FTR #1044), we set forth Mar­t­in’s work for Guy Ban­is­ter.

An impor­tant part of the dis­cus­sion fea­tures expand­ed analy­sis of both Hugh Aynesworth and James Phe­lan, both of whom were promi­nent media hatch­et men who helped defame Gar­ri­son.  (They, too, were high­light­ed in FTR #1044.)

Key points of dis­cus­sion about Aynesworth.

1.–Prior to the assas­si­na­tion of Pres­i­dent Kennedy, Aynesworth had net­worked with J. Wal­ton Moore, in charge of CIA oper­a­tions in Dal­las, Texas. Aynesworth was apply­ing for mem­ber­ship in the assas­si­na­tion.
2.-He was involved with attempt­ed sale of Oswald’s “diary.”
3.–Was net­worked with Mari­na Oswald, help­ing to dis­sem­i­nate the offi­cial lie about the assas­si­na­tion, and con­coct­ing a pre­pos­ter­ous sto­ry about Mari­na say­ing Oswald had planned to kill Nixon.
4.–Worked with peo­ple asso­ci­at­ed with CIA’s anti-Cas­tro Cuban milieu in con­junc­tion with Life Mag­a­zine’s “re-inves­ti­ga­tion” of the JFK assas­si­na­tion. Hen­ry Luce’s Life and oth­er pub­li­ca­tions had a his­to­ry of work­ing with the intel­li­gence com­mu­ni­ty.
5.–Disseminated dis­in­for­ma­tion about Garrison/JFK for “Newsweek.”
6.–He informed for both the FBI and Lyn­don John­son about Gar­rison’s inquest.
7.–Disseminated dis­in­for­ma­tion about David Fer­rie’s asso­ciate Alvin Beauboeuf. This dis­in­for­ma­tion ran par­al­lel to Wal­ter Sheri­dan’s dis­in­for­ma­tion efforts in this regard.
8.–Was instru­men­tal in frus­trat­ing Gar­rison’s attempts at inter­view­ing CIA Cuban oper­a­tive Ser­gio Arcacha Smith.
9.–Aynesworth net­worked with Clay Shaw’s defense team.

Key points of dis­cus­sion about Phe­lan include:

1.–Review of his hit piece on Gar­ri­son pub­lished by The Sat­ur­day Evening Post.
2.–His net­work­ing with intel­li­gence agen­cies in con­junc­tion with his jour­nal­is­tic activ­i­ties.
3.–His pro­fes­sion­al asso­ci­a­tion with Robert Loomis, who had a long career pub­lish­ing dis­in­for­ma­tion books cov­er­ing-up this coun­try’s major assas­si­na­tions. (Ger­ald Pos­ner’s noto­ri­ous “Case Closed” is a promi­nent exam­ple.
4.–Phelan also net­worked with Clay Shaw’s defense team, help­ing to intro­duce into the tri­al tes­ti­mo­ny the pre­pos­ter­ous “jet effect” syn­drome with regard to the head shot that sealed Kennedy’s fate. This pre­pos­ter­ous con­coc­tion main­tains that the vio­lent toss­ing of JFK’s body to the back and to the left by the fatal head shot was because the shot (sup­pos­ed­ly from behind) cre­at­ed a tun­nel in JFK’s head which, when it chan­neled the blood and flesh torn from Kennedy by the bul­let, cre­at­ed a “jet” that pro­pelled Kennedy back­ward.

The pro­gram con­cludes with a par­tial read­ing of a 2016 Huff­in­g­ton Post sto­ry based, in part on Phe­lan’s disin­gen­u­ous report­ing on the JFK assas­si­na­tion. One of the fea­tures of the arti­cle is that it casu­al­ly dis­miss­es Jim Gar­rison’s inves­ti­ga­tion as base­less, and sug­gests that Gar­ri­son felt the homo­sex­u­al Shaw was involved with the assas­si­na­tion as part of a “homo­sex­u­al thrill killing.”