Spitfire List Web site and blog of anti-fascist researcher and radio personality Dave Emory.
The tag 'Cover-Up' is associated with 378 posts.

Comedian Mort Sahl in 1976: The CIA Staffs the Left

One of several role models who inspired Mr. Emory to do his life’s work is political comedian Mort Sahl. One of Jim Garrison’s investigators, Sahl paid the price for his engagement. From an entertainment and media superstar, he became relegated to the margins of exposure and earning power. In his 1976 autobiography Heartland, he chronicled some suspicious violent events in New Orleans that immediately preceded Garrison’s campaign for re-election. Sahl surmised that this was probably part of a CIA campaign to destroy Garrison. In our long series on Jim DiEugenio’s Destiny Betrayed, we noted that former CIA director Richard Helms committed the Agency to destroying Garrison’s efforts before, during and after the trial of Clay Shaw. That these events may have been part of the “after” is something to be carefully considered. In his text, Sahl also notes that part of the CIA’s task is ” . . . . to staff the left. They don’t staff the right–that’ll take care of itself; they staff the left. They give a fellow a liberal credential, they’ll let you trust him, and they’ll always give you a cookie. A guy writes an article for Ramparts and says, ‘The Gulf Oil company wants to start a war so they can drill offshore in Vietnam.’ The reader says, ‘Wow, what revelations.’ that’s your cookie. . . .”


David Sarnoff’s Axis Connection: Background to NBC and the Walter Sheridan Broadcast

In our long series of interviews with Jim DiEugenio about his masterwork “Destiny Betrayed,” we highlighted veteran intelligence officer Walter Sheridan’s broadcast hatchet job on New Orleans D.A. Jim Garrison’s investigation of the JFK assassination. The TV hit piece was broadcast on the NBC network. In our discussion of the Sheridan broadcast, we noted the efforts of RCA chief David Sarnoff in resurrecting the Nazi Radio France station and presiding over its conversion to Radio Free Europe. (RCA is the parent company of NBC, which aired the Sheridan broadcast.) In resurrecting Radio France and midwiving its conversion to Radio Free Europe, Sarnoff, who is Jewish, was building on profound and treasonous Axis connections he maintained during the war. In “Trading with the Enemy,” Charles Higham chronicled the deep involvement of David Sarnoff with the Transradio Consortium, which joined the Axis nations with the Western Allies in a telecommunications cartel that provided vital–and lethal–intelligence to the Axis during the war. Key points of analysis and discussion include: 1.–David Sarnoff’s successful efforts to restore and expand the Nazi Radio France Station and re-brand it as “Radio Free Europe.” ” . . . . 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. . . . Robert was president of RCA, NBC’s parent company, at the time Sheridan’s special aired. David was chairman. . . .” 2.–Sarnoff’s RCA was part of the Transradio Consortium, something of a broadcast cartel melding Axis and Western Allied broadcast establishments: ” . . . . RCA was in partnership before and after Pearl Harbor with British Cable and Wireless; with Telefunken, the Nazi company; with Italcable, wholly owned by the Mussolini government; and with Vichy’s Compagnie Generale, in an organization known as the Transradio Consortium, with General Robert C. Davis, head of the New York Chapter of the American Red Cross, as its chairman. In turn, RCA, British Cable and Wireless, and the German and Italian companies had a share with ITT in TTP (Telegrafica y Telefonica del Plata), an Axis-controlled company providing telegraph and telephone service between Buenos Aires and Montevideo. Nazis in Montevideo could telephone Buenos Aires through TTP without coming under the control of either the state-owned system in Uruguay or the ITT system in Argentina. Messages, often dangerous to American security, were transmitted directly to Berlin and Rome by Transradio. Another shareholder was ITT’s German “rival,” Siemens, which linked cables and networks with Behn south of Panama. . . .” 3.–Transradio Consortium was the vehicle for lethally treasonous communications during the war: ” . . . . But the public, which thought of Sarnoff as a pillar of patriotism, would have been astonished to learn of his partnership with the enemy through Transradio and TTP. The British public, beleaguered and bombed, would have been equally shocked to learn that British Cable and Wireless, 10 percent owned by the British government, and under virtual government control in wartime, was in fact also in partnership with the Germans and Italians through the same companies and proxies. . . . Simultaneously, the Transradio stations, according to State Department reports with the full knowledge of David Sarnoff, kept up a direct line to Berlin. The amount of intelligence passed along the lines can scarcely be calculated. The London office was in constant touch with New York throughout the war, sifting through reports from Argentina, Brazil, and Chile and sending company reports to the Italian and German interests. . . .”


FTR #1058, FTR #1059 and FTR #1060 The Christian West, Parts 1, 2 and 3: Contextual Foundation of the Jim DiEugenio Interviews

Reviewing past material in order to refresh and reinforce understanding of the historical context and foundation of the recent Jim DiEugenio interviews, this program reviews information relevant to the concept of the Christian West. “The Christian West” is explained in the description for AFA #37: ” . . . . When it became clear that the armies of the Third Reich were going to be defeated, it opened secret negotiations with representatives from the Western Allies. Representatives on both sides belonged to the transatlantic financial and industrial fraternity that had actively supported fascism. The thrust of these negotiations was the establishment of The Christian West. Viewed by the Nazis as a vehicle for surviving military defeat, ‘The Christian West’ involved a Hitler-less Reich joining with the U.S., Britain, France and other European nations in a transatlantic, pan-European anti-Soviet alliance. In fact, The Christian West became a reality only after the cessation of hostilities. The de-Nazification of Germany was aborted. Although a few of the more obvious and obnoxious elements of Nazism were removed, Nazis were returned to power at virtually every level and in almost every capacity in the Federal Republic of Germany. . . .”

Against the background of Allen and John Foster Dulles’ long, overlapping careers as lawyers for Sullivan & Cromwell, as well as government operatives, we note the decisive role of cartels in precipitating fascism and the position in the political and macro-economic landscape of the events stemming from that.

Program Highlights Include: American recruitment of Nazi Eastern Front intelligence officers in August of 1944 (far earlier than generally supposed); The Gehlen “Org”‘s incorporation into the CIA with the consent of a Nazi chain of command that was still in existence; the role in the Gehlen Org of Eastern European fascist organizations including the OUN/B, the Romanian Iron Guard, the Croatian Ustachi, the Bulgarian National Front and the SS Baltic Legion; the incorporation of those same Gehlen-controlled Eastern European fascists into the GOP via the Crusade For Freedom (CFF); the pivotal role of Gehlen/Nazi/CFF personnel in the postwar GOP (Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, William Casey and George H.W. Bush); the re-institution of Nazis in the “New” Federal Republic of Germany; the control of the “New” Federal Republic of Germany by an underground Nazi fuehringsring and a command center in Madrid; the role of Canadian nickel interests in John Foster Dulles’ cobbling together of I.G. Farben; Garrison investigative target Clay Shaw’s networking with Canadian nickel interests; the role of both Dulles brothers in frustrating the interdiction of the Bormann flight capital program; the [apparently successful] negotiations between OSS chief William Donovan, his aide Allen Dulles and representative of the SS to realize the Christian West concept; the role of Crusade For Freedom personnel in the assassination of President Kennedy; Garrison investigative target Clay Shaw’s friendship with Nazi Finance Minister Hjalmar Schacht; Foster Dulles’ professional intimacy with Schacht; Shaw’s links to Permindex and the SS-linked Schroeder banking empire; the decisive role of Allen Dulles, George Herbert Walker (W’s great grandfather and the grandfather of George H.W. Bush), Prescott Bush, Sr. (the father of George H.W. Bush and the grandfather of W) in laundering U.S. capital investment in Nazi Germany and the return of those Nazi monies to the U.S.; Nazi steel magnate Fritz Thyssen’s close relationship to: Allen Dulles, Prescott Bush, Martin Bormann and the Schroeder banking interests; Allen Dulles’ “go-to” relationship with Senator Prescott Bush (senior) while serving as head of the CIA.


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Blakey:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Gaeton Fonzi’s work for the committee focused on:

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Key elements of discussion and analysis on this topic include:

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Key points of discussion and analysis about Connick:

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“Denied,” said Haggerty. . . .

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

A synoptic overview of the witnesses and their significance:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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