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FTR #1057 Miscellaneous Articles and Updates

1.–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. . . .”
2.–Fox News rejected a national buy for an ad that was to run during Sean Hannity’s show. The ad promotes the Oscar-nominated documentary A Night at the Garden, about a 1939 Nazi rally in New York City. The ad includes the warning “It Can Happen Here” about the potential dangers of President Donald Trump’s brand of populism. Hannity might be the most ‘Alt-Right’ of all the Fox News personalities (although he has competition). The ad never got to run, and was precluded by breaking news coverage of Trump’s rally in Texas–where Trump so riled up the audience against ‘the media’ that a BBC cameraman was violently attacked by someone wearing a MAGA hat.
3.–The El Paso Trump rally manifested a contemporary iteration of “A Night at the Garden”. ” . . . . Trump’s rally in El Paso was in support of his border wall. In his State of the Union address last week he claimed, falsely, that border fencing that was built south of the city in 2010 transformed El Paso from a dangerous place into a safe one. Its Republican mayor lashed out at the president last week for his falsehood. El Paso’s declining crime rate started well before the border fencing was built. But Trump repeated the lie Monday night. And for his audience, the lie was now the truth. ‘Once they built that wall, it was amazing how statistically the violence started going down,’ 39-year-old El Paso resident Michael Blanco, who owns an accounting business, told HuffPost outside the coliseum. ‘I’m a complete witness of it. Seen it growing up.’ Henri Rafael, a 58-year-old El Pasoan wearing a black Trump 2020 hat, said that even though the mayor corrected Trump, ‘I know for a fact that the crime was high back in the ’70s and ’80s, and when they built those walls, [crime] has dropped.’ In fact, violent crime increased in El Paso in the two years after the wall was built, according to a study from the El Paso Times. Trump periodically paused his speech Monday for chants of ‘Build the wall!’ and ‘USA!’ When he talked of the ‘fake news’ media, the crowd jeered. At one point, a particularly inspired Trump supporter attacked a BBC journalist . . . .”
4.–Next, we have an update on Data Propria, the Cambridge Analytica offshoot created by Brad Parscale’s company Cloud Commerce. The GOP hired the services of Data Propria for the 2018 mid-terms. Data Propria employs four ex-Cambridge Analytica employees, including Cambridge Analytica’s chief data scientist. Cambridge Analytica’s former head of product, Matt Oczkowski, leads Data Propia. Oczkowski led the Cambridge Analytica team that worked for Trump’s 2016 campaign, and was reportedly overheard bragging to a prospective client about how he’s already working on Trump’s 2020 campaign (which he subsequently denied). Brad Parscale ran the Trump 2016 campaign’s extensive digital operations that included extensive micro-targeting of individuals outside of the Cambridge Analytica efforts.
5.–Matt Oczkowski is now the running Parscale Digital in addition to Data Propria. Parscale Digital is the rebranded version of Parscale’s old marketing company. As the following article notes, Parscale sold his shares in Parscale Digital in August 2017, at the same time he purchased $9 million in stock for Cloud Commerce and took a seat on its board. August of 2017 is also the same month Parscale Digital was sold to Cloud Commerce. Thus, Parscale is a co-owner of Cloud Commerce which the owner of Parscale Digital. Now Matt Oczkowski, the former head of product for Cambridge Analytica, is running Parscale Digital.
6.–After a member of an “antifa” group was stabbed at a white supremacist rally, the FBI investigated the protesters, rather than the KKK. ” . . . . Federal authorities ran a surveillance operation on By Any Means Necessary (Bamn), spying on the leftist group’s movements in an inquiry that came after one of Bamn’s members was stabbed at the white supremacist rally, according to documents obtained by the Guardian. The FBI’s Bamn files reveal: * The FBI investigated Bamn for potential ‘conspiracy’ against the ‘rights’ of the ‘Ku Klux Klan’ and white supremacists. * The FBI considered the KKK as victims and the leftist protesters as potential terror threats, and downplayed the threats of the Klan, writing: ‘The KKK consisted of members that some perceived to be supportive of a white supremacist agenda.’ * The FBI’s monitoring included in-person surveillance, and the agency cited Bamn’s advocacy against ‘rape and sexual assault’ and ‘police brutality’ as evidence in the terrorism inquiry. The FBI’s 46-page report on Bamn, obtained by the government transparency non-profit Property of the People through a records request, presented an ‘astonishing’ description of the KKK, said Mike German, a former FBI agent and far-right expert who reviewed the documents for the Guardian. . . . ”
7.–The FBI investigation into the motive behind Stephen Paddock’s massacre in Las Vegas has omitted Paddock’s links with the Sovereign Citizen movement, which we highlighted in FTR #1011. ” . . . . The high-stakes gambler responsible for the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history sought notoriety in the attack but left his specific motive a mystery, the FBI said Tuesday as it concluded the investigation of the 2017 massacre that killed 58 country music fans. . . .”
8.–This society has been sowing the Nazi and fascist winds for a long time. Failing to come to terms with the Nazi and fascist sympathies of American industrialists who financed Hitler, the incorporation of the Nazi SS into the CIA via the Gehlen org, and the incorporation of Eastern and Central European SS-allied fascists into the GOP has borne its inevitable fruit. Now it will be reaping the Nazi whirlwind. An extremely popular children’s lip-synching app called TikTok has incorporated murderously racist invective against people of color and Jews, in addition to sharing overtly Nazi propaganda.
9.–Even as officialdom and the media downplay or outright dismiss the Junior Prom photo from Baraboo High School, we should expect things to become dramatically worse. Time grows short. Tik Tok! ” . . . . Police announced on Monday they were investigating after a photo emerged on social media showing dozens of pupils – mostly 16 and 17 – from Baraboo High School apparently performing the ‘Sieg Heil’ greeting during their junior prom. One former student at the school in Baraboo, a town of around 12,000 people, said she knew some of the boys in the photo and that their behaviour was ‘definitely not surprising’. ‘Some of the boys in this photo are notorious at our school for this kind of behaviour,’ said the 19-year-old, who graduated earlier this year and wished to remain anonymous. . . .”
10.–Announced Democratic Presidential candidate Kamala Harris opposed the 2012 parole bid of demonstrably innocent Sirhan Sirhan, the patsy for the RFK assassination.
11.–With the New Cold War gathering momentum and Trump’s withdrawal from the treaty on intermediate range nuclear missiles pointing the world toward war, it is worth reflecting on the history and deep politics that brought this about. Colonel L. Fletcher Prouty has written about events in August of 1944 that are indicative of the coalescence of the “Christian West” concept that we discussed in AFA #37 and further developed in FTR #1009. Note that this was well before the official incorporation of the Gehlen “Org” into CIA. We note that it was in August of 1944 that the famous “Red House” meeting at which the Bormann flight capital network realized under the auspices of Aktion Adlerflug was launched. ” . . . . On August 23, 1944, the Romanians accepted Soviet surrender terms and in Bucharest the OSS rounded up Nazi intelligence experts and their voluminous Eastern European intelligence files and concealed them among a trainload of American POW’s who were being quickly evacuated from the Balkans via Turkey. Once in “neutral” Turkey, the train continued to a planned destination at a site on the Syrian border, where it was stopped to permit the transfer of Nazis and POW’s to a fleet of U.S. [Army] Air Force planes for a flight to Cairo. I was the chief pilot of that flight of some thirty aircraft . . . . It was this covert faction within the OSS, coordinated with a similar British intelligence faction, and its policies that encouraged chosen Nazis to conceive of the divisive ‘Iron Curtain’ concept to drive a wedge in the alliance with the Soviet Union as early as 1944–to save their own necks, to salvage certain power centers and their wealth, and to stir up resentment against the Russians, even at the time of their greatest military triumph. . . . .”


FTR #1054, FTR #1055 and FTR #1056 Interviews #23, #24 and #25 with Jim DiEugenio about “Destiny Betrayed”

These are the twenty-third, twenty-fourth and twenty-fifth (and concluding program) in a 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 first interview begins with a telling editorial written for “The Washington Post” by former President Harry Truman.

Destiny Betrayed by Jim DiEugenio; Skyhorse Publishing [SC]; Copyright 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEugenio; ISBN 978-1-62087-056-3; pp. 378-379.

. . . . On December 22, 1963, Harry Truman wrote an editorial that was published in the Washington Post. The former President wrote that he had become “disturbed by the way the CIA had become diverted from its original assignment. It has become an operational and at times a policy-making arm of government.” He wrote that he never dreamed that this would happen when he signed the National Security Act. he thought it would be used for intelligence analysis, not “peacetime cloak and dagger operations.” He complained that the CIA had now become “so removed from its intended role that it is being interpreted as a symbol of sinister and mysterious foreign intrigue–and a subject for Cold War enemy propaganda.” Truman went as far as suggesting its operational arm be eliminated. He concluded with the warning that Americans have grown up learning respect for “our free institutions and for our ability to maintain a free and open society. There is something about the way the CIA has been functioning that is casting a shadow over out historic position and I feel hat we need to correct it.” . . . .

Former CIA Director (and then Warren Commission member) Allen Dulles visited Truman and attempted to get him to retract the statement. He dissembled about then CIA chief John McCone’s view of the editorial.

The focal point of the first two programs is the dramatic changes in U.S. foreign policy that occurred because of JFK’s assassination. Analysis in FTR #1056 continues the analysis of Kennedy’s foreign policy and concludes with riveting discussion of the striking policy undertakings of the Kennedy administration in the area of civil rights. Jim has written a marvelous, 4-part analysis of JFK’s civil rights policy.

Discussion of JFK’s foreign policy and how his murder changed that builds on, and supplements analysis of this in FTR #1031, FTR #1032 and FTR #1033.

Lyndon Baines Johnson reversed JFK’s foreign policy initiatives in a number of important ways.

When the United States reneged on its commitment to pursue independence for the colonial territories of its European allies at the end of the Second World War, the stage was set for those nations’ desire for freedom to be cast as incipient Marxists/Communists. This development was the foundation for epic bloodshed and calamity.

Jim details then Congressman John F. Kennedy’s 1951 fact-finding trip to Saigon to gain an understanding of the French war to retain their colony of Indochina. (Vietnam was part of that colony.)

In speaking with career diplomat Edmund Gullion, Kennedy came to the realization that not only would the French lose the war, but that Ho Chi Minh and the Viet Minh guerrillas enjoyed great popular support among the Vietnamese people.

This awareness guided JFK’s Vietnam policy, in which he not only resisted tremendous pressure to commit U.S. combat troops to Vietnam, but planned a withdrawal of U.S. forces from Vietnam.

Perhaps the most important change made after JFK’s assassination was Johnson’s negation of Kennedy’s plans to withdraw from Vietnam.

LBJ cancelled Kennedy’s scheduled troop withdrawal, scheduled personnel increases and implemented the 34A program of covert operations against North Vietnam. Executed by South Vietnamese naval commandos using small, American-made patrol boats, these raids were supported by U.S. destroyers in the Gulf of Tonkin, which were electronically “fingerprinting” North Vietnamese radar installations.

The electronic fingerprinting of North Vietnamese radar was in anticipation of a pre-planned air war, a fundamental part of a plan by LBJ to involve the United States in a full-scale war in Southeast Asia.

Destiny Betrayed by Jim DiEugenio; Skyhorse Publishing [SC]; Copyright 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEugenio; ISBN 978-1-62087-056-3; pp. 368-371.

. . . . Clearly now that the withdrawal was imminent, Kennedy was going to try and get the rest of his administration on board to his way of thinking. Not only did this not happen once Kennedy was dead, but the first meeting on Vietnam afterwards was a strong indication that things were now going to be cast in a sharply different tone. This meeting took place at 3:00 p.m. on November 24. . . . Johnson’s intent was clear to McNamara. He was breaking with the previous policy. The goal now was to win the war. LBJ then issued a strong warning: He wanted no more dissension or division over policy. Any person who did not conform would be removed. (This would later be demonstrated by his banning of Hubert Humphrey from Vietnam meetings when Humphrey advised Johnson to rethink his policy of military commitment to Vietnam.) . . . . The reader should recall, this meeting took place just forty-eight hours after Kennedy was killed. . . .

. . . . Therefore, on March 2, 1964, the Joint Chiefs passed a new war proposal to the White House. This was even more ambitious than the January version. It included bombing, the mining of North Vietnamese harbors, a naval blockade, and possible use of tactical atomic weapons in case China intervened. Johnson was now drawing up a full scale battle plan for Vietnam. In other words, what Kennedy did not do in three years, LBJ had done in three months.

Johnson said he was not ready for this proposal since he did not have congress yet as a partner and trustee. But he did order the preparation of NSAM 288, which was based on this proposal. It was essentially a target list of bombing sites that eventually reached 94 possibilities. By May 25, with Richard Nixon and Barry Goldwater clamoring for bombing of the north, LBJ had made the decision that the U.S. would directly attack North Vietnam at an unspecified point in the future. But it is important to note that even before the Tonkin Gulf incident, Johnson had ordered the drawing up of a congressional resolution. This had been finalized by William Bundy, McGeorge Bundy’s brother. Therefore in June of 1964, Johnson began lobbying certain people for its passage in congress. . . .

National Security Memorandum 263

. . . . Johnson seized upon the hazy and controversial events in the Gulf of Tonkin during the first week of August to begin he air war planned in NSAM 288. Yet the Tonkin Gulf incident had been prepared by Johnson himself. After Kennedy’s death, President Johnson made a few alterations in the draft of NSAM 273. An order which Kennedy had never seen but was drafted by McGeorge Bundy after a meeting in Honolulu, a meeting which took place while Kennedy was visiting Texas. . . .

. . . . On August 2, the destroyer Maddox was attacked by three North Vietnamese torpedo boats. Although torpedoes were launched, none hit. The total damage to the Maddox
was one bullet through the hull. Both Johnson and the Defense Department misrepresented this incident to congress and the press. They said the North Vietnamese fired first, that the USA had no role in the patrol boat raids, that the ships were in international waters, and there was no hot pursuit by the Maddox. These were all wrong. Yet Johnson used this overblown reporting, plus a non-existent attack two nights later on the destroyer Turner Joy to begin to push his war resolution through Congress. He then took out the target list assembled for NSAM 288 [from March of 1964–D.E] and ordered air strikes that very day. . . .

. . . . For on August 7, Johnson sent a message to General Maxwell Taylor. He wanted a whole gamut of possible operations presented to him for direct American attacks against the North. The target date for the systematic air war was set for January 1965. This was called operation Rolling Thunder and it ended up being the largest bombing campaign in military history. The reader should note: the January target date was the month Johnson would be inaugurated after his re-election. As John Newman noted in his masterful book JFK and Vietnam, Kennedy was disguising his withdrawal plan around his re-election; Johnson was disguising his escalation plan around his re-election. . . .

In addition to noting that Hubert Humphrey, contrary to popular misconception, was an opponent of Johnson’s war strategy, we note that Robert McNamara was also opposed to it, although he went along with the Commander in Chief’s policies.

After detailed discussion of the human and environmental damage inflicted on Vietnam and the strategy implemented by LBJ after Kennedy’s assassination, the discussion turns to Johnson’s reversal of Kennedy’s policy with regard to Laos.

The fledgling nation of Laos was also part of French Indochina, and Jim notes how outgoing President Eisenhower coached President-Elect Kennedy on the necessity of committing U.S. combat forces to Laos.

Again, Kennedy refused to commit U.S. ground forces and engineered a policy of neutrality for Laos.

Destiny Betrayed by Jim DiEugenio; Skyhorse publishing [SC]; Copyright 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEugenio; ISBN 978-1-62087-056-3; p. 54.

. . . . At his first press conference, Kennedy said that he hoped to establish Laos as a “peaceful country–an independent country not dominated by either side.” He appointed a task force to study the problem, was in regular communication with it and the Laotian ambassador, and decided by February that Laos must have a coalition government, the likes of which Eisenhower had rejected out of hand. Kennedy also had little interest in a military solution. He could not understand sending American troops to fight for a country whose people did not care to fight for themselves. . . . He therefore worked to get the Russians to push the Pathet Lao into a cease-fire agreement. This included a maneuver on Kennedy’s part to indicate military pressure if the Russians did not intervene strongly enough with the Pathet Lao. The maneuver worked, and in May of 1961, a truce was called. A few days later, a conference convened in Geneva to hammer out conditions for a neutral Laos. By July of 1962, a new government, which included the Pathet Lao, had been hammered out. . . .

Whereas JFK had implemented a policy affording neutrality to Laos–against the wishes of the Joint Chiefs, CIA and many of his own cabinet, LBJ scrapped the neutralist policy in favor of a CIA-implemented strategy of employing “narco-militias” such as the Hmong tribesmen as combatants against the Pathet Lao. This counter-insurgency warfare was complemented by a massive aerial bombing campaign.

One of the many outgrowths of LBJ’s reversal of JFK’s Southeast policy was a wave of CIA-assisted heroin addicting both GI’s in Vietnam and American civilians at home.

LBJ also reversed JFK’s policy toward Indonesia.

In 1955, Sukarno hosted a conference of non-aligned nations that formalized and concretized a “Third Way” between East and West. This, along with Sukarno’s nationalism of some Dutch industrial properties, led the U.S. to try and overthrow Sukharno, which was attempted in 1958.

Kennedy understood Sukarno’s point of view, and had planned a trip to Indonesia in 1964 to forge a more constructive relationship with Sukharno. Obviously, his murder in 1963 precluded the trip.

In 1965, Sukarno was deposed in a bloody, CIA-aided coup in which as many as a million people were killed.

Of particular interest in connection with Indonesia, is the disposition of Freeport Sulphur, a company that had enlisted the services of both Clay Shaw and David Ferrie in an effort to circumvent limitations on its operations imposed by Castro’s Cuba:

Destiny Betrayed by Jim DiEugenio; Skyhorse publishing [SC]; Copyright 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEugenio; ISBN 978-1-62087-056-3; pp. 208-209.

. . . . In Chapter 1, the author introduced Freeport Sulphur and its subsidiaries Moa Bay Mining and Nicaro Nickel. These companies all had large investments in Cuba prior to Castro’s revolution. And this ended up being one of the ways that Garrison connected Clay Shaw and David Ferrie. This came about for two reasons. First, with Castro taking over their operations in Cuba, Freeport was attempting to investigate bringing in nickel ore from Cuba, through Canada, which still had trade relations with Cuba. The ore would then be refined in Louisiana, either at a plant already in New Orleans or at another plant in Braithwaite. Shaw, an impressario of international trade, was on this exploratory team for Freeport. And he and two other men had been flown to Canada by Ferrie as part of this effort. More evidence of this connection through Freeport was found during their investigation of Guy Banister. Banister apparently knew about another flight taken by Shaw with an official of Freeport, likely Charles Wight, to Cuba. Again the pilot was David Ferrie. Another reason this Freeport connection was important to Garrison is that he found a witness named James Plaine in Houston who said that Mr. Wight of Freeport Sulphur had contacted him in regards to an assassination plot against Castro. Considering the amount of money Freeport was about to lose in Cuba, plus the number of Eastern Establishment luminaries associated with the company–such as Jock Whitney, Jean Mauze and Godfrey Rockefeller–it is not surprising that such a thing was contemplated within their ranks. . . .

LBJ reversed Kennedy’s policy vis a vis Sukarno. It should be noted that Freeport had set its corporate sights on a very lucrative pair of mountains in Indonesia, both of which had enormous deposits of minerals, iron, copper, silver and gold in particular.

Destiny Betrayed by Jim DiEugenio; Skyhorse publishing [SC]; Copyright 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEugenio; ISBN 978-1-62087-056-3; pp. 374-375.

. . . . Shortly after, his aid bill landed on Johnson’s desk. The new president refused to sign it. . . .

. . . . In return for not signing the aid bill, in 1964, LBJ received support from Both Augustus Long and Jock Whitney of Freeport Sulphur in his race against Barry Goldwater. In fact, Long established a group called the National Independent Committee for Johnson. This group of wealthy businessmen included Robert Lehman of Lehman Brothers and Thomas Cabot, Michael Paine’s cousin. . . . Then, in early 1965, Augustus Long was rewarded for helping Johnson get elected. LBJ app[ointed him to the Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board. This is a small group of wealthy private citizens who advises the president on intelligence matters. The members of this group can approve and suggest covert activities abroad. This appointment is notable for what was about to occur. For with Sukarno now unprotected by President Kennedy, the writing was on the wall. The Central Intelligence Agency now bean to send into Indonesia its so called “first team.” . . . .

. . . . Suharto now began to sell off Indonesia’s riches to the highest bidder. Including Freeport Sulphur, which opened what were perhaps the largest copper and gold mines in the world there. . . . Freeport, along with several other companies, now harvested billions from the Suharto regime. . . .

Yet another area in which JFK’s policy outlook ran afoul of the prevailing wisdom of the Cold War was with regard to the Congo. A Belgian colony which was the victim of genocidal policies of King Leopold (estimates of the dead run as high as 8 million), the diamond and mineral-rich Congo gained a fragile independence.

In Africa, as well, Kennedy understood the struggle of emerging nations seeking freedom from colonial domination as falling outside of and transcending stereotyped Cold War dynamics.

In the Congo, the brutally administered Belgian rule had spawned a vigorous independence movement crystallized around the charismatic Patrice Lumumba. Understanding of, and sympathetic to Lumumba and the ideology and political forces embodied in him, Kennedy opposed the reactionary status quo favored by both European allies like the United Kingdom and Belgium, as well as the Eisenhower/Dulles axis in the United States.

Destiny Betrayed by Jim DiEugenio; Skyhorse publishing [SC]; Copyright 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEugenio; ISBN 978-1-62087-056-3; pp. 28-29.

. . . . By 1960, a native revolutionary leader named Patrice Lumumba had galvanized the nationalist feeling of the country. Belgium decided to pull out. But they did so rapidly, knowing that tumult would ensue and they could return to colonize the country again. After Lumumba was appointed prime minister, tumult did ensue. The Belgians and the British backed a rival who had Lumumba dismissed. They then urged the breaking away of the Katanga province because of its enormous mineral wealth. Lumumba looked to the United Nations for help, and also the USA. The former decided to help, . The United States did not. In fact, when Lumumba visited Washington July of 1960, Eisenhower deliberately fled to Rhode Island. Rebuffed by Eisenhower, Lumumba now turned to the Russians for help in expelling the Belgians from Katanga. This sealed his fate in the eyes of Eisenhower and Allen Dulles. The president now authorized a series of assassination plots by the CIA to kill Lumumba. These plots finally succeeded on January 17, 1961, three days before Kennedy was inaugurated.

His first week in office, Kennedy requested a full review of the Eisenhower/Dulles policy in Congo. The American ambassador to that important African nation heard of this review and phoned Allen Dulles to alert him that President Kennedy was about to overturn previous policy there. Kennedy did overturn this policy on February 2, 1961. Unlike Eisenhower and Allen Dulles, Kennedy announced he would begin full cooperation with Secretary Dag Hammarskjold at the United Nations on this thorny issue in order to bring all the armies in that war-torn nation under control. He would also attempt top neutralize the country so there would be no East/West Cold War competition. Third, all political prisoners being held should be freed. Not knowing he was dead, this part was aimed at former prime minister Lumumba, who had been captured by his enemies. (There is evidence that, knowing Kennedy would favor Lumumba, Dulles had him killed before JFK was inaugurated.) Finally, Kennedy opposed the secession of mineral-rich Katanga province. . . . Thus began Kennedy’s nearly three year long struggle to see Congo not fall back under the claw of European imperialism. . . . ”

In the Congo, as in Indonesia, LBJ reversed JFK’s policy stance, and the corporate looting of the Congo resulted under General Joseph Mobutu, himself a beneficiary of the piracy.

Destiny Betrayed by Jim DiEugenio; Skyhorse Publishing [SC]; Copyright 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEugenio; ISBN 978-1-62087-056-3; pp. 372-373.

. . . . But in October and November [of 1963], things began to fall apart. Kennedy wanted Colonel Michael Greene, an African expert, to train the Congolese army in order

to subdue a leftist rebellion. But General Joseph Mobutu, with the backing of the Pentagon, managed to resist this training, which the United Nations backed. In 1964, the communist rebellion picked up steam and began taking whole provinces. The White House did something Kennedy never seriously contemplated: unilateral action by the USA. Johnson and McGeorge Bundy had the CIA fly sorties with Cuban pilots to halt the communist advance. Without Kennedy, the UN now withdrew. America now became an ally of Belgium and intervened with arms, airplanes and advisers. Mobutu now invited Tshombe back into the government. Tshombe, perhaps at the request of the CIA, now said that the rebellion was part of a Chinese plot to take over Congo. Kennedy had called in Edmund Gullion to supervise the attempt to make the Congo government into a moderate coalition, avoiding the extremes of left and right. But with the Tshombe/Mobutu alliance, that was now dashed. Rightwing South Africans and Rhodesians were now allowed to join the Congolese army in a war on the “Chinese-inspired left.” And with the United Nations gone, this was all done under the auspices of the United States. The rightward tilt now continued unabated. By 1965, Mobutu had gained complete power. And in 1966, he installed himself as military dictator. . . . Mobutu now allowed his country to be opened up to loads of outside investment. The riches of the Congo were mined by huge Western corporations. Their owners and officers grew wealthy while Mobutu’s subjects were mired in poverty. Mobutu also stifled political dissent. And he now became one of the richest men in Africa, perhaps the world. . . .

In FTR #1033, we examined JFK’s attempts at normalizing relations with Cuba. That, of course, vanished with his assassination and the deepening of Cold War hostility between the U.S. and the Island nation, with a thaw of sorts coming under Barack Obama a few years ago.

There is no more striking area in which JFK’s murder reversed what would have been historic changes in America’s foreign policy than U.S.-Soviet relations.

JFK had implemented a ban on atmospheric testing of nuclear weapons, bitterly opposed by the Pentagon, In a June, 1963 speech at American University, JFK called for re-evaluating America’s relationship to the Soviet Union, and cited the U.S.S.R’s decisive role in defeating Nazi Germany during World War II.

JFK was also proposing joint space exploration with the Soviet Union, which would have appeared to be nothing less than treasonous to the Pentagon and NASA at the time. After JFK’s assassination, the Kennedy family used a backchannel diplomatic conduit to the Soviet leadership to communicate their view that the Soviet Union, and its Cuban ally, had been blameless in the assassination and that powerful right-wing forces in the United States had been behind the assassination.

Perhaps JFK’s greatest contribution was one that has received scant notice. In 1961, the Joint Chiefs were pushing for a first strike on the Soviet Union–a decision to initiate nuclear war. JFK refused, walking out of the discussion with the disgusted observation that “We call ourselves the human race.”

In FTR #’s 876, 926 and 1051, we examined the creation of the meme that Oswald had been networking with the Cubans and Soviets in the run-up to the assassination. In particular, Oswald was supposedly meeting with Valery Kostikov, a KGB official in charge of assassinations in the Western Hemisphere.

This created the pretext for blaming JFK’s assassination on the Soviet Union and/or Cuba. There are indications that JFK’s assassination may well have been intended as a pretext for a nuclear first strike on the Soviet Union.

JFK and the Unspeakable: Why He Died and Why It Matters by James W. Douglass; Touchstone Books [SC]; Copyright 2008 by James W. Douglas; ISBN 978-1-4391-9388-4; pp. 242-243.

. . . . As JFK may have recalled from the National Security Council meeting he walked out of in July 1961, the first Net Evaluation Subcommittee report had focused precisely on “a surprise attack in late 1963, preceded by a period of heightened tensions.” Kennedy was a keen reader and listener. In the second preemptive-war report, he may also have noticed the slight but significant discrepancy between its overall time frame, 1963-1968, and the extent of its relatively reassuring conclusion, which covered only 1964 through 1968. . . .

. . . . In his cat-and-mouse questioning of his military chiefs, President Kennedy had built upon the report’s apparently reassuring conclusion in such a way as to discourage preemptive-war ambitions. However, given the “late 1963” focus in the first Net Report that that was the most threatening time for a preemptive strike, Kennedy had little reason to be reassured by a second report that implicitly confirmed that time as the one of maximum danger. The personally fatal fall JFK was about to enter, in late 1963, was the same time his military commanders may have considered their last chance to “win” (in their terms) a preemptive war against the Soviet Union. In terms of their second Net Report to the President, which passed over the perilous meaning of late 1963, the cat-and-mouse game had been reversed. It was the generals who were the cats, and JFK the mouse in their midst.

The explicit assumption of the first Net Report was “a surprise attack in late 1963, preceded by a period of heightened tensions.” The focus of that first-strike scenario corresponded to the Kennedy assassination scenario. When President Kennedy was murdered in late 1963, the Soviet Union had been set up as the major scapegoat in the plot. If the tactic had been successful in scapegoating the Russians for the crime of the century, there is little doubt that it would have resulted in “a period of heightened tensions” between the United States and the Soviet Union.

Those who designed the plot to kill Kennedy were familiar with the inner sanctum of our national security state. Their attempt to scapegoat the Soviets for the President’s murder reflected one side of the secret struggle between JFK and his military leaders over a preemptive strike against the Soviet Union. The assassins’ purpose seems to have encompassed not only killing a President determined to make peace with the enemy, but also using his murder as the impetus for a possible nuclear first strike against that same enemy. . . .

With the GOP and Trump administration openly suppressing voting rights of minorities, African-Americans in particular, the stellar efforts of JFK and the Justice Department in the area of civil rights is striking. JFK’s civil rights policy was exponentially greater than what had preceded him, and much of what followed.

The conclusion of the discussion in FTR #1056 consists of Jim’s discussion of his marvelous, 4-part analysis of JFK’s civil rights policy.


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 #1045 Interview #14 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 fourteenth 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 highlight the media hatchet men who worked hand in glove with the intelligence community infiltrators set forth in our previous interview. Many of the hatchet men also worked with each other, as well as the intelligence community.

Most significantly, both the intelligence community infiltrators and the media hatchet men worked with Clay Shaw’s counsel and freely broke the law.

In addition to a CBS special that aired at the same time (1967), NBC broadcast an outright hatchet job on Garrison presided over by Walter Sheridan. A veteran of the intelligence community, Sheridan had worked for the FBI, the Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI) and was a principal figure in counter-intelligence for the National Security Agency. As will be seen below, Sheridan reputedly had strong, deep connections to CIA itself.

Destiny Betrayed by Jim DiEugenio; Skyhorse Publishing [SC]; Copyright 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEugenio; ISBN 978-1-62087-056-3; p. 255.

. . . . The conventional wisdom about Walter Sheridan places him as a former FBI man; reportedly he worked at the Bureau for about four years. . . .

. . . . Sheridan’s ties to the intelligence community, beyond the FBI, were wide, deep, and complex. He himself said that, like Guy Banister, he had been with the Office of Naval Intelligence. Then, after he left the bureau, Sheridan did not go directly to the Justice Department. He moved over to the newly established National Security Agency. This was a super-secret body created by President Truman in 1952 both to protect domestic codes and communications and to gather intelligence through cracking foreign codes. It was so clandestine that, for a time, the government a tempted to deny its existence. Therefore, for along time, it operated inalmost total secrecy. Neither the Congress nor any fedreal agency had the effective oversight to regulate it. . . .

It is worth noting that–in addition to Sheridan’s deep intelligence background–NBC itself had strong, deep connections to the intelligence community. . . . .

Destiny Betrayed by Jim DiEugenio; Skyhorse Publishing [SC]; Copyright 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEugenio; ISBN 978-1-62087-056-3; p. 255.

. . . . It is relevant to note here that General David Sarnoff, founder of NBC, worked for the Signal Corps during World War II as a reserve officer. In 1944, Sarnoff worked for the complete restoration of the Nazi destroyed Radio France station in Paris until its signal was able to reach throughout Europe. It was then retitled Radio Free Europe. He later lobbied the White House to expand the range and reach of Radio Free Europe. At about this point, Radio Free Europe became a pet project of Allen Dulles. Sarnoff’s company, Radio Corporation of America, became a large part of the technological core of the NSA. During the war, David’s son Robert worked in the broadcast arm of the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), the forerunner of the CIA. Robert was president of RCA, NBC’s parent company, at the time Sheridan’s special aired. David was chairman. . .

Sheridan also presided over an ostensibly “private” investigative institution which was, in fact, a CIA front. It is worth noting that Beurt Ser Vas–an alumnus of the Three Eyes–purchased The Saturday Evening Post, which published an anti-Garrison hit piece by James Phelan. (This is highlighted below.)

Destiny Betrayed by Jim DiEugenio; Skyhorse Publishing [SC]; Copyright 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEugenio; ISBN 978-1-62087-056-3; p. 256.

. . . The company was International Investigators Incorporated, nicknamed “Three Eyes.” According to a Senate investigator, “it was owned lock, stock, and barrel by the CIA.” Two of the original principals, George Miller and George Ryan, were, like Banister, former G-men who later went to work for CIA cover outfits. According to another source, not only was Sheridan the liaison to Three Eyes, he “disposed over the personnel and currency of whole units of the Central Intelligence Agency out of the White House.” By 1965 . . . Three Eyes was taken over by two former CIA officers. One of them, Beurt Ser Vaas, later purchased the Saturday Evening Post. . . .

Exemplifying Sheridan’s methodology was the treatment meted out to Fred Leemans, who was the climactic person interviewed by Sheridan in his special. Note the open intimidation of Leemans and his family, threatening them if they did not perjure themselves, betray Garrison, and cooperate with both Sheridan and Clay Shaw’s counsel!

This is reminiscent of the treatment of Marlene Mancuso detailed in our previous interview.

Destiny Betrayed by Jim DiEugenio; Skyhorse Publishing [SC]; Copyright 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEugenio; ISBN 978-1-62087-056-3; pp. 240-241.

. . . . One of the more startling declarations that the ARRB uncovered was an affidavit by a man named Fred Leemans. Leemans was a Turkish bath owner who originally told garrison that a man named Clay Bertrand had frequented his establishment. Leemans was the climactic interview for Sheridan’s special. He testified on the show that the DA’s office had actually approached him first, that he never knew that Shaw used the alias Bertrand, that everything he had previously said to the DA’s office were things he was led to say by them, and that they had offered to pay him 2,500 dollars for his affidavit in which in which he would now say that Shaw was Bertrand and that Shaw came into his establishment once with Oswald. In other words, all the things Novel had been saying in his public declarations about Garrison were accurate. At the end of his interview, Leemans told Sheridan and the public that everything he had just revealed on camera was given to NBC freely and voluntarily. Leemans even said that he had actually asked Sheridan for some monetary help but Sheridan had said he did not do things like that.

In January of 1969, Leemans signed an affidavit in which he declared the following as the true chain of events:

“I would like to state the reasons for which I appeared on the NBC show and lied about my contacts with the District Attorney’s office. First, I received numerous anonymous threatening phone calls relative to the information I had given to Mr. Garrison. The gist of these calls was to the effect that if I did not change my statement and state that I had been bribed by Jim Garrison’s office, I and my family would be in physical danger. In addition to the anonymous phone calls, I was visited by a man who exhibited a badge and stated that he was a government agent. This man informed me that the government was presently checking the bar owners in the Slidell area for possible income tax violations. This man then inquired whether I was the Mr. Leemans involved in the Clay Shaw case. When I informed him that I was, he said that it was not smart to be involved because a lot of people that had been got hurt and that people in powerful places would see to it that I was taken care of. One of the anonymous callers suggested that I change my statement and state that I had been bribed by Garrison’s office to give him the information about Clay Shaw. He suggested that I contact Mr. Irvin Dymond, attorney for Clay L. Shaw and tell him that I gave Mr. Garrison the statement about Shaw only after Mr. Lee [Garrison’s assistant DA] offered me 2,500 dollars. After consulting with Mr. Dymond by telephone and in person, I was introduced to Walter Sheridan, investigative reporter for NBC, who was then in the process of preparing the NBC show. Mr. Dymond and Mr. Sheridan suggested that I appear on the show and state what I had originally told Mr. Dymond about the bribe offer by the District Attorney’s office. I was informed by Mr. Dymond that should the District Attorney’s office charge me with giving false information as a result of the statement I had originally given them, he would see to it that I had an attorney and that a bond would be posted for me. In this connection, Mr. Dymond gave me his home and office telephone numbers and and advised me that I could contact him at any time of day or night should I be charged by Garrison’s office as a result of my appearing on the NBC show. My actual appearance on the show was taped in the office of Aaron Kohn, Managing Director of the Metropolitan Crime Commission, in the presence of Walter Sheridan and Irvin Dymond.”

This is one of the most revealing documents portraying the lengths to which Sheridan would go in tampering with witnesses. It also demonstrates that Shaw’s lawyers—Bill and Ed Wegmann, Irvin Dymond, and Sal Panzeca—knew almost no boundary in what kind of help they would accept to win their case. Third, it reveals that Shaw’s lawyers had access to a network of attorneys that they could hire at any time for any witness they could pry loose from Garrison. Because, as the declassified ARRB documents reveal, there was a CIA cleared attorney’s panel that was at work in New Orleans. Attorneys that the Agency vetted in advance so they would be suitable for their covert use and could be trusted in their aims. The fact that Shaw’s lawyers were privy to such CIA secret knowledge, and wee utilizing it, shows just how willing and eager they were to indulge themselves in covert help—and then lie about it. . . .

In addition to Sheridan, James Phelan and Hugh Aynesworth joined the media chorus attacking Garrison, and both of them networked with the intelligence community as well. Phelan’s hit piece was published in the Saturday Evening Post, which was eventually bought by CIA veteran Beurt Ser Vas, an alumnus of the Sheridan-linked Three Eyes intelligence front.


FTR #1043 Interview #12 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 twelfth 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 continue with analysis of Clay Shaw’s intelligence connection, beginning with review of his work for the Domestic Operations Division.

A fascinating intelligence involvement of Shaw’s is his work with Permindex.

Destiny Betrayed by Jim DiEugenio; Skyhorse Publishing [SC]; Copyright 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEugenio; ISBN 978-1-62087-056-3; pp. 385-386.

. . . . The next step in the CIA ladder after his high-level overseas informant service was his work with the strange company called Permindex. When the announcement for Permindex was first made in Switzerland in late 1956, its principal backing was to come from a local banker named Hans Seligman. But as more investigation by the local papers was done, it became clear that the real backer was J. Henry Schroder Corporation. This information was quite revealing. Schroder’s had been closely associated with Allen Dulles and the CIA for years. Allen Dulles’s connections to the Schroder banking family went back to the thirties when his law firm, Sullivan and Cromwell, first began representing them through him. Later, Dulles was the bank’s General Counsel. In fact, when Dulles became CIA director, Schroder’s was a repository for a fifty million dollar contingency fund that Dulles personally controlled. Schroder’s was a welcome conduit because the bank benefited from previous CIA overthrows in Guatemala and Iran. Another reason that there began to be a furor over Permindex in Switzerland was the fact that the bank’s founder, Baron Kurt von Schroder, was associated with the Third Reich, specifically Heinrich Himmler. The project now became stalled in Switzerland. It now moved to Rome. In a September 1069 interview Shaw did for Penthouse Magazine, he told James Phelan that he only grew interested in the project when it moved to Italy. Which was in October 1958. Yet a State Department cable dated April 9 of that year says that Shaw showed great interest in Permindex from the outset.

One can see why. The board of directors as made up of bankers who had been tied up with fascist governments, people who worked the Jewish refugee racket during World War II, a former member of Mussolini’s cabinet, and the son-in-law of Hjalmar Schacht, the economic wizard behind the Third Reich, who was a friend of Shaw’s. These people would all appeal to the conservative Shaw. There were at least four international newspapers that exposed the bizarre activities of Permindex when it was in Rome. One problem was the mysterious source of funding: no one knew where it was coming from. Another was that its activities reportedly included assassination attempts on French Premier Charles De Gaulle. Which would make sense since the founding member of Permindex, Ferenc Nagy, was a close friend of Jacques Soustelle. Soustelle was a leader of the OAS, a group of former French officers who broke with De Gaulle over his Algerian policy. They later made several attempts on De Gaulle’s life, which the CIA was privy to. Again, this mysterious source of funding, plus the rightwing, neo-Fascist directors created another wave of controversy. One newspaper wrote that the organization may have been “a creature of the CIA . . . set up as a cove for the transfer of CIA . . . funds in Italy for legal political-espionage activities.” The Schroder connection would certainly suggest that. . . .

His involvement with Permindex places him in the transnational corporate milieu that spawned fascism and Nazism. Key observations about Permindex and Shaw’s participation in it:

1.–Shaw was part of the deep political orbit of the Dulles brothers and Sullivan & Cromwell.
2.–The Permindex operational link to the Schroder Bank places it in the same milieu as the Himmler Kreis, the industrialists and financiers who financed the workings of the SS through an account in the Schroder Bank.
3.–Shaw was a friend of Hjalmar Horace Greeley Schacht, who became the finance minister of the Third Reich and was very close to the Dulles brothers.
4.–Permindex was apparently involved with the OAS efforts to assassinate De Gaulle. This places Shaw in a network including: Banister investigator Maurice Brooks Gatlin, who boasted of having transferred money to the OAS from the CIA; Rene Souetre–an OAS operative who was expelled from Dallas/Ft. Worth the day of the assassination of JFK.
5.–As discussed in FTR #’s 1031 and 1032, JFK was an early critic of the French policy in Algeria, criticizing it on the floor of the Senate in 1957.

The conclusion of the broadcast focuses largely on the CIA’s intense interest in the Garrison investigation. This interest was manifested through an agency conclave informally named “The Garrison Group.”

“Destiny Betrayed” by Jim DiEugenio; Skyhorse Publishing [SC]; Copyright 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEugenio; ISBN 978-1-62087-056-3; p. 270.

. . . . Helms wanted the group to “consider the possible implications for the Agency” of what Garrison was doing in “New Orleans before, during, and after the trial of Clay Shaw. It is crucial to keep in mind the phrase: before, during, and after. As we will see, the effective administrator Helms was thinking not just of some short term fix, but of formulating a strategy for the long haul. According to the very sketchy memo about this meeting, [CIA General Counsel Lawrence] Houston discussed his dealings with the Justice Department and the desire of Shaw’s defense to meet with the CIA directly. [Ray] Rocca then said something quite ominous. He said that he felt “that Garrison would indeed obtain a conviction of Shaw for conspiring to assassinate President Kennedy.” This must have had some impact on the meeting. Since everyone must have known that Rocca had developed, by bar, the largest database on Garrison’s inquiry at CIA. . . .

We note that House Select Committee on Assassinations assistant counsel Jonathan Blackmer wrote the following:

“Destiny Betrayed” by Jim DiEugenio; Skyhorse Publishing [SC]; Copyright 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEugenio; ISBN 978-1-62087-056-3; p. 332.

. . . . “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.” . . . .

The program concludes with analysis of Clay Shaw’s close relationship to the Stern family of WDSU. In addition to carrying staged interviews between Oswald and Carlos Bringuier, the broadcast outlet pilloried Jim Garrison and his trial of Clay Shaw.


FTR #1042 Interview #11 with Jim DiEugenio about “Destiny Betrayed”

This is the eleventh 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 broadcast, we explore the association of David Ferrie and Clay Shaw in the context of the planning of assassination plots against JFK, as well as Shaw’s involvement with the intelligence community.

NB: In our previous interview, Mr. Emory mistakenly linked “The Bomb” to Clay Shaw and to a plot to assassinate JFK. Shaw was, according to credible testimony involved with Ferrie in another, probably connected, association to discuss killing Kennedy.

David Ferrie had a desk in the  office of C. Wray Gill, a lawyer for Carlos Marcello. When another of Gill’s clients–a woman named Clara Gay–was in the office, she witnessed another Ferrie assassination schematic on November 26, 1963:

Destiny Betrayed by Jim DiEugenio; Skyhorse publishing [SC]; Copyright 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEugenio; ISBN 978-1-62087-056-3; p. 217.

. . . . Clara looked  over at Ferrie’s desk and she saw what looked like a diagram of Dealey Plaza: it was a drawing of a car from the perspective of an angle from above, the car was surrounded by high buildings, reminiscent of Dealey Plaza. After the secretary threw it out, Clara  retrieved it. She said it should be given to the FBI or Secret Service. The secretary took it back and a pulling contest ensued. The secretary eventually won, but not before Clara saw the words “Elm Street” on the diagram. She later reconstructed this experience for Garrison. She said she came forward because she considered herself a good citizen, and Ferrie must  have been  something evil . . . .

After discussion of the Ferrie Dealey Plaza assassination schematic, the discussion turns to a conversation witnessed by Perry Russo, one of Garrison’s most important witnesses.

Key points of information about what Russo witnessed:

1.–Present at the meeting where the discussion took place were: Clay Shaw, David Ferrie, Lee Harvey Oswald and several Cubans.
2.–Shaw was using one of his most common aliases–“Clay Bertrand.”
3.–Ferrie became increasingly agitated and highlighted “triangulation of crossfire” as necessary to assure a kill shot on Kennedy.
4.–Ferrie and Shaw discussed the necessity of being somewhere else, to give themselves “cover.” This led Russo to conclude that the plans were concrete not theoretical.
5.–Ferrie said he would be in Hammond, LA., on the campus of Southeastern Louisiana. He was, in fact, there on the day of the assassination.
6.–Shaw said that he would be on the West Coast. He was, in fact, at the San Francisco Trade Mart, where he was to give a talk. When news of of the assassination reached Shaw and his host, Shaw seemed remarkably detached. When asked if he thought the talk should go forward in light of the news, Shaw said yes. This struck those around him at that time  as  curious.

The issue of Shaw’s aliases is an important one. The day after the assassination of JFK, New Orleans attorney Dean Andrews got a call from “Clay Bertrand,” requesting that he represent Lee Harvey Oswald in Dallas. Andrews had previously encountered Shaw using the same alias when seeking legal representation for some gay Latinos.

Key aspects of Andrews’ contact with Shaw/Bertrand:

1.–Andrews feared for his life if this came to light. He claimed to have been told, after calling Washington D.C., that he might get a bullet in the head if he talked.
2.–After Andrews changed his testimony, Garrison charged him with perjury, eventually gaining a conviction.
3.–Andrews’ statements about Shaw/Bertrand were bolstered by someone at the VIP lounge at the Eastern Airlines terminal at New Orleans airport, who knew Shaw to sign in under that alias.
4.–Numerous people in bars and bistros–particularly in the French Quarter–knew that Shaw used that alias. Because of Garrison’s crackdown on organized crime-related operations in New Orleans, his potential informants remained silent.

When being booked, Shaw actually stated that he used the alias “Clay Bertrand.”

Shaw was booked by a New Orleans police officer named Aloysius Habighorst–who had an excellent record. When being booked, Shaw stated that he used the alias “Clay Shaw.” Before testifying at Shaw’s trial, Habighorst’s car was rammed by a yellow truck, and he was injured.

At Shaw’s trial, Judge Haggerty refused to admit Shaw’s admitted alias as evidence.

The concluding portion of the broadcast deals with Clay Shaw’s intelligence connections. Key points of information in that regard:

1.–Shaw’s intelligence connections date to World War II, when he worked as a aide-de-camp to General Charles Thrasher. This placed him in the Special Operations Section, a branch of military intelligence and one which was involved with recruiting some of the Paperclip personnel to work for the U.S.
2.–After the war, he became involved with International House, a Rockefeller-linked operation deeply involved with the transnational corporate community.
3.–His work for the International Trade Mart followed logically on the heels of his work for International House.
4.–Shaw also worked with the  Mississippi Shipping Company, which did a lot of work with the CIA.
5.–His “Y” file indicated that Shaw’s work for CIA involved conferring with the agency before traveling to Latin America, not after he returned as was the case for most informants.
6.–At least one of Shaw’s files with the CIA was destroyed.

One of the most important elements of Shaw’s intelligence career was uncovered by researcher Peter Vea, whose disclosures were supplemented by some interesting commentary by Victor Marchetti.

Destiny Betrayed by Jim DiEugenio; Skyhorse publishing [SC]; Copyright 1992, 2012 by Jim DiEugenio; ISBN 978-1-62087-056-3; p. 385.

. . . . Peter Vea discovered a very important document while at the National Archives in 1994. Attached to a listing of Shaw’s numerous contacts with the Domestic Contact service, a listing was attached which stated that Shaw had a covert security approval in the Project QKENCHANT. This was in 1967 and the present tense was used, meaning that Shaw  was an active covert operator for the CIA while Garrison was investigating him. When William Davy took this document to former CIA officer Victor Marchetti, an interesting conversation ensued. As Marchetti looked at the document, he said, “That’s interesting . . . . He was . . . He was doing something there.” He then said that Shaw would not need a covert security clearance for domestic contacts service. He then added, “This was something else. This would imply that he was doing some kind of work for the  Clandestine Services.” When Davy asked what branch of Clandestine Services would that be, Marchetti replied, “The DOD (Domestic Operations Division). It was one of the most secret divisions within the Clandestine Services. This was Tracey Barnes’s old outfit. They were getting into things . . . Uh . . . exactly what, I don’t know. But they were getting into some pretty risky areas. And this is what E. Howard Hunt was working for at the time.” And in fact, Howard Hunt did have such a covert clearance issued to him in 1970 while he was working at the White House. . . .


Anti-Fascist Archives

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