Did the CIA track Oswald before JFK was killed?

Yes, closely and constantly.

This is one of the biggest JFK revelations of the past 20 years, and one that we need talk up in social and news media on the 50th anniversary of JFK’s assassination.

While the CIA assured Congress in the 1970s that its interest in Lee Harvey Oswald before JFK was killed was “routine,” the newest documents tell a very different story: Oswald was monitored closely and constantly by an super-secret office within the CIA’s Counterintelligence Staff from 1959 to 1963, known as the Special Investigations Group.

The documents show that the CIA officers most knowledgeable about Oswald reported to two of the most powerful men in the agency: deputy director Richard Helms and counterintelligence chief James Angleton, both of whom thought JFK’s policy toward Cuba was weak and misguided.

John Newman’s book

The story was first documented in John Newman’s 1995 book “Oswald and the CIA.” Newman is a former intelligence officer turned academic historian. Newman, who taught at the University of Maryland, traced how the CIA intercepted Oswald’s correspondence when he was living in the Soviet Union 1959 to 1962.

He showed how the CIA’s own records document growing interest in Oswald in the course of 1963, culminating in October 1963 when a group of senior CIA officials collaborated on a four-page cable assessing Oswald as a security risk. These officials assured colleagues in the CIA and the FBI that Oswald was “maturing” and thus becoming less of a threat. This happened just six weeks before JFK was killed.

Read this CIA cable — not fully declassified until 2001— from beginning to end. It shows that Oswald’s travels, politics, intentions, and state of mind were known to six senior CIA officers as of October 10, 1963. Oswald had just moved to Dallas and been taken off the FBI’s Watch List.

Because the CIA is so often caricatured in JFK discussions, some background is helpful in understanding who wrote this document and why.

Oswald in Mexico City

In the fall of 1963, Oswald, a 23-year old ex-Marine, is said to have traveled from his hometown of New Orleans to Mexico City. There a man identifying himself as Lee Oswald visited the Cuban and Soviet Embassies, seeking a visa to travel to both countries. A CIA wiretap picked up his telephone calls, which indicated the person calling himself Oswald had been referred to a Soviet consular officer suspected of being a KGB assassination specialist.

Win Scott, the chief of the CIA station in Mexico, was concerned. He asked his photo surveillance teams outside the Soviet Embassy to supply pictures of all American visitors. Scott was given a photo of the only American-looking visitor. He sent a query to headquarters: Who is this guy Oswald?

Scott’s question was referred to the agency’s counterintelligence (CI) staff. The CI staff was responsible for detecting threats to the secrecy of agency operations. The Special Investigations Group  had been closely monitoring Oswald ever since he had defected to the Soviet Union in October 1959. Oswald had lived there two years, married a Russian woman, and then returned to the United States in June 1962.

Jane Roman a senior member of the CI staff, retrieved the agency’s fat file on Oswald from the SIG office which controlled access to it. The Oswald file included some three dozen documents, including family correspondence, State Department cables, and a Sept. 1963 FBI report. The FBI said Oswald was an active pro-Castro leftist who had recently been arrested for fighting with anti-Castro exiles in New Orleans.

Jane Roman and the CI staff drafted a response to the Mexico City station that said, in effect, Don’t worry. Ignoring the recent FBI report, the cable inaccurately stated the “latest HQS info” on Oswald was a 16-month old message from a diplomat in Moscow concluding that Oswald’s marriage and two year residence in the Soviet Union had had a “maturing effect” on him.

Their draft was reviewed and endorsed by five senior CIA officers, who are identified on the last page of the cable. At the same time these same also officers passed on an incorrect description Oswald to the FBI, State Department, and Navy. This peculiar series of actions has never been explained by the CIA.

The many anomalies in the story convinced Newman and other JFK authors that Oswald had been impersonated while in Mexico City. In custody, Oswald denied going to Mexico City and some researchers believe that he never went at all.

CIA Secrecy

In any case, the CIA would kept the names of these highly-regarded officers — Tom Karamessines, Bill Hood, John Whitten (“John Scelso”), Jane Roman, and Betty Egeter — secret for 30 years. These high-level aides could have — and should have — flagged Oswald for special attention. All five were anti-communists, well-versed in running covert operations and experienced in detecting threats to U.S. national security.

Karamessines was the trusted deputy to Dick Helms. Bill Hood oversaw all covert operations in the Western Hemisphere, and would later co-author Helms’s posthumous memoir. John Whitten, dogged and curmudgeonly, had built a reputation in the agency with his pioneering use of the polygraph. Jane Roman was a trusted aide to Angleton, who later told me that the cable reflected “a keen interest in Oswald held very closely on the need-to-know basis.”

Their complacent assessment of Oswald had real-world consequences.

In Mexico City, Win Scott never learned about Oswald’s recent arrest or the fact that he had gone public with his support for Castro. He stopped investigating Oswald.

In Washington, a senior FBI official, Marvin Gheesling, responded to one version of the CIA’s benign assessment by taking Oswald off an “alert” list of people of special interest to the Bureau. When it came to the erratic and provocative Oswald, the CIA and the FBI were standing down in October 1963.

Conspiracy or not, the CIA blew it. Oswald had been calling attention to himself. He had clashed with anti-Castro students in New Orleans, then contacted a suspected KGB operative to arrange an illegal trip to Cuba. By standard CIA procedures of the day, he should have gotten closer attention. Instead, he got a pass from Helms and Angleton’s staffers.

Oswald returned from Mexico to Dallas where he rented a room in a boarding house under an assumed name. Six weeks later JFK was shot dead, and the allegedly “maturing” Oswald was arrested.

These same CIA officials then concealed key details about their pre-assassination interest in Oswald from the Warren Commission. But we now know what they suppressed

TOMORROW: What happened to the information the CIA collected on Oswald? DId agency officials destroy a wiretap recording, made in Mexico City, of someone calling himself  ”Lee Oswald”?

 

 

 

42 comments

  1. George Simmons says:

    This is excellent and fascinating work.

    I think it is clear that the CIA deliberately prevented an open and honest investigation of the JFK assassination.

  2. Brian LeCloux says:

    Was Oswald’s CIA number 110669?

  3. jeffmorley says:

    In response to questions from Paul Hoch, the CIA denied that the number 110669 referred to Oswald.

    See: https://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?mode=searchResult&absPageId=417948

    • anonymous says:

      ” the CIA denied that the number 110669 referred to Oswald.”

      How credible is the CIA? Have they ever been found to propagate assassinations-related disinformation? Didn’t they offer Life magazine two forged top-secret U.S. State Department cables designed to prove that Kennedy had personally and specifically ordered the assassination of Diem?…

  4. Robin Finn says:

    The log from the surveillance base that took the photographs of the Mexico City “Mystery Man” identified him as an American.How can someone taking pictures across the street identify a visitor to the Soviet Embassy as an American unless he has visited before and is known to be an American through further investigation? And a CIA cable from Mexico City after 11/22/63 claimed the “Mystery Man had also visited the Cuban Embassy on October 15.But no one in the Mexico City station knew his identity or tried to find out more about him?

    • Alan Dale says:

      Bill Simpich has stated that the “mystery man” photos probably show a Soviet KGB operative named Yuri Moskalev. There is no persuasive evidence of which I’m aware that the figure in those photos was in any way actually affiliated with or claimed to be Lee Oswald. For more on the Mexico City intrigues check Bill’s book, State Secret which is made available at no charge through Mary Ferrell Foundation.

      My interview with Bill may be heard here: http://www.jfklancer.com/audioconversations.html

  5. Edmond Gunny says:

    The first time I saw the photo of the mystery man I thought he appeared to be Russian or at least Eastern European.

  6. Haim Modiano says:

    The assertion of Newman and Summers that Oswald was impersonated needs explantion. Why would anyone want to impersonate Lee Oswald, who was a loser and loner. Additionally, saying he was impersonated only adds to the questions — not diminish them — because then who was this impersonator and what was his involvement in the plot to kill the president?

    • Brad Milch says:

      I believe the invitation to impersonate Lee Oswald presented itself when newspapers initially reported he had defected to the Soviet Union (along with some others). Any reader could assume all released names were people that were not ever going to return to the USA from behind the Iron Curtain; thus it would be safe to pretend to be them. Mafia & other criminal types, educators, Intel operatives all read newspapers along with the general public. Providing Lee Oswald’s name & the city he was from was sufficient info for a good private investigator to seek & find additional info to aid a deception. The problem for any impersonator is Lee Oswald returned to the USA.

    • Alan Dale says:

      State Secret: Wiretapping in Mexico City, Double Agents, and the Framing of Lee Oswald by Bill Simpich

      Preface

      http://www.maryferrell.org/wiki/index.php/Featured_State_Secret_Preface

      Chapter 1: The Double Dangle

      http://www.maryferrell.org/wiki/index.php/State_Secret_Chapter1

      Chapter 2: Three Counterintelligence Teams Watched Oswald

      http://www.maryferrell.org/wiki/index.php/State_Secret_Chapter2

      Chapter 3: The Cuban Compound in Mexico City Was Ground Zero

      http://www.maryferrell.org/wiki/index.php/State_Secret_Chapter3

      Chapter 4: Mexico City Intrigue – The World of Surveillance

      http://www.maryferrell.org/wiki/index.php/State_Secret_Chapter4

      Chapter 5: The Mexico City Solution

      http://www.maryferrell.org/wiki/index.php/State_Secret_Chapter5

      Chapter 6: The Set-up and the Cover-up

      http://www.maryferrell.org/wiki/index.php/State_Secret_Chapter6

    • Fearfaxer says:

      Oswald was not a loner. In fact, he was constantly putting himself in situations in which he’d have to interact with other people, and was always eager to chat them up. Read the Warren Commission testimony of people who knew him, like Nelson Delgado and Michael Paine to discover just how much of a loner he wasn’t.

      As to his being a loser . . . define what you mean by “loser.” Lee Harvey Oswald led what can only be described as a remarkable life. Just to take one instance, in the summer of 1963,how many 23 year-old high-school dropouts appeared on popular radio interview programs debating the ins and outs of US foreign policy with CIA connected activists? Add to this his extensive foreign travels (I’m not even taking his years in the Marines into account here), his fluency in a very difficult language, his seeming ability to go wherever he wanted and do anything he wanted to do in spite of his having no known source of income other than starvation wages and an unemployment check — there were countless numbers of men his age who’d probably have been delighted to trade places with him, prior to November 22.

      • Larry Rivera says:

        It’s hard to argue against that! I tell students of this case all the time how remarkable LHO was in this regard. All you have to do is look at his TV interview and listen to the audio of his debates with Bill Stuckey in NO. NOT the average 23 year old. All are available on youtube.

        • Jonathan says:

          Indeed. I’ve watched Oswald on film and also certain assassination witnesses, such as Orville Nix.

          Nix, a good guy, is responsive but terse; he doesn’t have an agenda. He’s not out to change the world.

          Oswald, on the other hand, is not only direct but also assertive. He expresses his thoughts clearly and forcibly, in good, clean English. Unlike Nix, he’s out to make a point.

          Oswald is anything but an asocial loser. He’s focused and clear.

    • TLR says:

      The impersonation was part of the ongoing attempt to link Oswald to Castro and the KGB. The plotters hoped that after the assassination, the country wouuld believe that Castro and the KGB were responsible and a war could be justified. Fortunately this didn’t happen, mostly because Oswald was captured alive.

    • ARNALDO MIGUEL FERNANDEZ says:

      It´s clear Oswald was impersonated in Mexico City, since a phone call by a male who identified himself as Lee Oswald was intercepted by the CIA center LIENVOY on October 1, 1963, and the CIA transcriber related it to a September 28 call from the same person, who spoke broken Russian (Oswald was fluent in Russian). Moreover, the FBI agents in Dallas realized, after receiving the tapes from Mexico, that this person wasn´t an English native speaker either. Enough for establishing a conspiracy fact, that forced to erase the call made by Hoover to already President Johnson about Oswald´s imposter. However, the transcript survived and is available at LBJ Presidential Library

      • John McAdams says:

        No tapes from Mexico City were sent to Dallas. That’s a factoid.

        http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/clueless3.htm

        • ARNALDO MIGUEL FERNANDEZ says:

          Let me simply rephrase: I mean the tap referred by J. Edgar Hoover to LBJ thusly:
          “We have up here the tape and the photograph of the man who was at the Soviet Embassy using Oswald’s name. That picture and the tape do not correspond to this man voice, nor to his appearance.”
          For being a conspiracy fact it’s irrelevant whether that tape was send from Mexico City or fell from heaven.
          See:
          http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?docId=807

        • Jonathan says:

          John,

          So that everyone here can participate in exchanging information, please define what you mean by “factoid”. Thanks.

          • ARNALDO MIGUEL FERNANDEZ says:

            Thanks for the hint, but let’s rephrase then: the CIA transcriber Orville Horsfall [Boris Tarasoff] heard not the tapes, but the very phone calls on October 1 and September 28. Tarasoff made the remarks of a male identifiying himself as “Lee Oswald” and speaking
            “terrible, hardly recognizable Russian.”
            What about the tape reported by FBI Chief Gordon Shanklin?
            “The Agents who have talked to Oswald have listened to the tape provided by CIA of the call allegedly made by Oswald to the Soviet Embassy, and they do not think the individual is Oswald, as his voice is different, and he spoke in broken English.”
            It appears in a November 23, 1963 memo from FBI Director Assistant for Investigative Work, Alan H. Belmont, to Associate Director Clyde A. Tolson (Research Papers of John Armstrong, Book 1, Notebook 2, pages 38-39).

          • Jean Davison says:

            Alvarado,

            Shanklin didn’t report receiving a tape. That was reported by Belmont, who had spoken to Shanklin but evidently misunderstood him, because Shanklin *immediately* let headquarters know that it was incorrect. His 11/23 message to headquarters is quoted in the link above:

            http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?mode=searchResult&absPageId=69318

            There’s also a 11/22 Shanklin “memo to file” that says he received “transcripts” (not a tape).

            Oswald was fluent in Russian, yes, after living and working in the USSR for over two years with private language tutors in the beginning. But like most non-native speakers he spoke with an accent and his grammar wasn’t always correct. After he returned to this country in 1962 and he was no longer forced to speak Russian almost exclusively, his Russian gradually got worse according to Marina. To a professional translator, maybe he sounded awful.

  7. James O'Neill says:

    Jeff, there is an obvious and more likely explanation for (a) Oswald’s supposed erratic behaviour; and (b) that surveillance etc was stood down a month before the assassination. I suggest that explanation lies in the fact that Oswald was at all times being manipulated by his CIA handlers to create a “legend” that would then be used to explain why he killed JFK.

    The whole charade with Mexico City (where Oswald certainly did not go) was part of plan (A): to blame Cuba and the USSR for the assassination justifying an invasion of Cuba. When the dangers in that plan became evident to Johnson, the fallback Plan B was to paint Oswald as an unstable lone nut etc.

    None of this is new. It has been thoroughly documented in a number of books published over the past 10 years. I frankly don’t know why you persist in keeping alive even the possibility that Oswald went to Mexico City or was a disgruntled loner inexplicably picking fights.

    • ARNALDO MIGUEL FERNANDEZ says:

      Oswald’s via application at the Cuban Consulate on September 27, 1963, shows his photo and his signature. Both were certified as authentic and could be certified at any time (JFK Exhibit F-408).

      • Jean Davison says:

        Oswald’s visa application was provided to both the WC and the HSCA by the Cuban government:

        http://www.history-matters.com/archive/jfk/wc/wcvols/wh25/html/WC_Vol25_0422b.htm

        Silvia Duran told the HSCA that Oswald handed her the photo seen on the application and signed it in her presence. She said that she gave Oswald her phone number; her phone number is in his address book:

        http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?absPageId=131722

        That’s just a fraction of the evidence that Oswald visited the two embassies in Mexico City.

      • Jonathan says:

        A photo is easy to obtain, and a good forger can reproduce almost anyone’s signature. I mention these facts because certain communications allegedly written by Oswald (order to buy rifle, letter to Marina re General Walker) are suspect for various reasons and therefore come under suspicion of having been forged.

        Jean Davison: Sylvia Duran’s statements re Oswald lack credibility given the abuse she suffered at the hands of the Mexican security forces at the behest of the CIA’s Mexico City Station. But I’m interested: What is the other “fraction of the evidence” that Oswald visited the Soviet and Cuban embassies in Mexico City? That is, “evidence” that would hold up to cross exam.

        • Jean Davison says:

          When Duran talked to the HSCA in 1978, she freely described her mistreatment at the hands of the Mexican security forces. I see no good reason to doubt her. Here’s her testimony with a searchable version:

          http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?docId=954&relPageId=10

          http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/russ/m_j_russ/hscadurn.htm

          Are you suggesting that an impostor handed Duran a photo of Oswald and she didn’t notice that it wasn’t the same man standing in front of her? The application photo even appears to show a sleeveless V-neck sweater later found among Oswald’s belongings:

          http://www.history-matters.com/archive/jfk/wc/wcvols/wh16/html/WH_Vol16_0272b.htm

          Other evidence? As I recall, several Russian Embassy employees who dealt with Oswald ID-ed him on Frontline. Oswald sent a letter to their embassy in Washington referring to his trip to Mexico:

          http://www.history-matters.com/archive/jfk/wc/wcvols/wh16/html/WH_Vol16_0029a.htm

          Also, statements from people who saw him on the buses to and from Mexico and in a hotel and restaurants there, travel documents, a dated Mexico tourist handout found among his possessions, plus the fact that Oswald was seen leaving his N.O. apartment 9/24 with suitcases after his wife left separately with Ruth. He went somewhere, right?

          • Jonathan says:

            Sylvia Duran at one point described Oswald as being blond and short. She told the HSCA the person with whom she met was the same man arrested in Dallas for JFK’s murder, but a co-worker said that was not the case. She claimed Oswald called her embassy on a Saturday, but the embassy was closed on Saturdays. In 1967, she claimed she had sexual relations with LHO; but there’s no corroboration of this.

            The tourist flyer was found in a book in the Paine residence some months after the assassination. Some assassination researchers believe the flyer was planted. The Paine residence, after all, provided most of the material used against Oswald — it was an unending source of material.

            Truth is, Jean, although I believe the record on balance indicates Oswald didn’t go to M.C., he may have gone; but if he did go, why didn’t the CIA have a record of his visiting the embassies?

            And if he did go to Mexico City, what then of Sylvia Odio’s story? Odio was checked out by Warren Staffers and given a first class rating for reliability. If one believes the Mexico City trip occurred and one gives credence to Sylvia Odio, one has a stew smacking of conspiracy.

  8. Jonathan says:

    The fact five upper level CIA officer put out inaccurate and misleading information on Oswald in October 1963 means one thing: someone powerful in the CIA did not want anyone (Win Scott, the FBI, State Department, etc.) taking a look at Oswald.

    There’s a possibly innocent explanation for this. The most obvious is that Oswald was working deep cover for the CIA. A sinister explanation would be that Oswald and certain CIA officers thought this was the case, but in fact he was being secretly and maliciously handled by someone else.

    The story of Oswald’s traveling to Mexico City is full of holes. The most innocent explanation is that he did go to Mexico City and that the Mexico City CIA station obliterated this fact in order to keep secret its surveillance capabilities. A sinister explanation is that he didn’t go, which I believe.

    Marina only said he went to M.C. after, apparently, being threatened by the FBI with deportation. The witnesses who allegedly saw or didn’t see Oswald on the bus heading south said all kinds of things inconsistent with what’s known of Oswald (he looked like a Mexican, and he ate lots of Mexican food at stops). Sylvia Duran was coerced into saying untrue things about Oswald.

    The only thing I can figure is that certain persons wanted it to appear that Oswald went to M.C. in order to get permission to travel to the USSR via Cuba, in order to set him up; but this part of their plot failed, because the CIA wouldn’t back it up.

    • Jason L. says:

      Some of the Russians from the embassy (Kostikov, etc) have stated Oswald was there. You still have the Odio and other evidence, so it’s not a slam dunk, but on the whole I think Oswald probably did go to MC. Still, I think it is clear he was impersonated while there, and it’s hard to come up with an innocent explanation for it.

      • Jonathan says:

        Jason L,

        If Oswald did go to Mexico City but was impersonated there, why was he impersonated? And why, if he was impersonated, did he go to Mexico City?

        The questions don’t have reasonable answers. Except perhaps to an intelligence analyst.

        It’s reasonable to believe he didn’t go to Mexico City.

        He was being set up or otherwise manipulated. The set-up, if that’s what it was, wasn’t casual or an after-thought. It was carefully planned and executed.

        What we’re peering at here is an intelligence operation. That may have been hijacked.

  9. bogman says:

    A couple of strange things about the memo from HQ to Mexico City:

    o It says Oswald came to US embassy “on his own initiative” to return to the US. Who else’s initiative would it be and how would the CIA know what his motivations were for returning?

    o It mentions that Oswald did not ask for Soviet citizenship three times, making it clear he was just testing the waters and really didn’t want to forsake the land of his birth.

    Then, as Jeff notes, no mention of Oswald’s FPCC escapade in NO even though it involved a CIA-sponsored group.

    It’s obvious the memo was deliberately meant to deceive, but for what purpose? Aye, there’s the rub.

  10. anonymous says:

    “deputy director Helms and counterintelligence chief Angleton, both of whom thought JFK’s policy toward Cuba was weak and misguided.”

    The deep state did not think JFK’s policy toward Cuba was weak – it was a pawn. It’s his policy toward the USSR that was weak – he would be described as being “soft on communism”. Invading Cuba would lead to war with the USSR. The deep state believed that nuclear war with the Soviets was inevitable and wanted a nuclear war while it was still ‘winnable’ *. Cuba was just an opportunity to motivate a nuclear attack on the Soviet Union**. They were convinced that 5,000 nuclear missiles launched on the Soviets, would destroy their 350 nuclear missiles and therefore limit the retaliation.

    General LeMay thought a massive US preemptive nuclear strike could finish the Cold War. During the Missile Crisis, LeMay wanted to bomb nuclear sites in Cuba. When JFK asked him how the Soviets would respond, he replied that they would “do nothing”. If Lemay was not stupid – he must have thought Kennedy was:
    http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/USAlemay.htm

    Six months before the Cuban Missile Crisis , General Lemnitzer, with the support of Lemay, presented JFK with a memo, code named Operation Northwoods, the memo suggested that the administration should arrange a terror campaign in Miami and Washington that would create international revulsion.

    *
    http://blog.nuclearsecrecy.com/2012/04/27/friday-image-targeting-the-ussr-in-august-1945/

    ** It’s not that easy to make war – just look at what Bush was up against:
    http://www.esquire.com/features/fox-fallon

    • lysias says:

      That thought — war is inevitable, and it is better for us that it should occur now rather than later — is precisely what led the German government in 1914 to wish for war, or at the least not to wish for peace strongly enough to make sufficiently strenuous efforts to see to it that the peace was kept.

  11. Ronnie Wayne says:

    “winnable” What a concept of nuclear war. Nuclear war is about annihilation of people and places. “First Strike” did not guarantee hitting all targets. So we miss a few of their missiles.We kill millions of their People and destroy many of their largest cities but only loose a few hundred thousand and a few major cities. Sad.

    Ref last paragraph above. Was a meeting regarding Northwoods the one where JFK walked out during it and told and aide “and we call ourselves the Human race”?

  12. Rick Adkins says:

    I believe Judyth Vary Baker’s account of Lee’s visit to Mexico City and the why thereof. If you don’t know her account look her up on youtube. She was right in the middle of it and so far most of what she says lines up.

  13. Arnaldo M Fernandez says:

    Let’s clean the mess up here. Even if we admit, gratia arguendi, that all references to tapes in the 1963 FBI memos are “factoids,” because more than a decade later a “misunderstanding” was clarified by the HSCA: there wasn’t no tapes, but only transcripts, the conspiracy fact of the impersonation becomes more solid, given that the transcripts clearly establish that a male identifying himself as an American named “Lee Oswald” and speaking broken Russian called the Soviet Embassy on September 28 (from the Cuba one) and October 1, but the CIA failed to provide a single tape and inexplicably missed ten occasions for taking a photo of Oswald entering or exiting communist embassies in Mexico City. Along with the conspiracy of silence in the so-called “cables of October,” the impersonation is a conspiracy fact and the issue couldn’t be put at rest with the subterfuge that no tape was sent from Mexico City to Dallas.

    • Dave says:

      According to Mark Lane at the Oct. 2013 Wecht JFK conference, CIA’s David Atlee Phillips admitted at a university Q&A event that it would eventually come out that Oswald never was in Mexico City.

      • Jean Davison says:

        Dave,

        Mark Lane is notorious for yanking quotes out of context so that the original meaning is turned upside-down. Compare his quotes from Ruby and Helen Markham, e.g., with what those witnesses actually said. Therefore, I won’t know what Phillips “admitted” until I read the full transcript or see a tape.

        In Plausible Denial, Mark Lane argued that Oswald wasn’t in Mexico but he left out virtually ALL the evidence that showed he was there. If I remember correctly, he failed to mention most if not all of the evidence I’ve listed in this thread — the application provided by the Cuban government, Duran’s phone number in his notebook, etc., etc.

        Incidentally, in the letter below, the Cuban government acknowledged that Oswald visited its Consulate and spoke with Duran and Azcue there:

        https://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?docId=1141&relPageId=616

        Lane left that out, too, of course.

  14. anonymous says:

    “Did the CIA track Oswald before JFK was killed?”

    A better question is – Did the CIA run Oswald before JFK was killed?
    The cable starts “Lee HENRY Oswald probably identical to LEE OSWALD (201-289248) born 18Oct 1939″

    Osswald’s 201 file might indicate that the CIA tracked Oswald – but was that 201 file forged in order to “provision for blaming Soviets in case of blow?. Planning for falsely implicating communists in assassinations perpetrated by the CIA was agency practice in the early 1960s:

    “Should have phoney 201 in RI to backstop this, all documents therein forged & backdated…
    — Excerpt from “Project ZRRIFLE” notes, created in December 1960, by William K. Harvey, the CIA officer in charge of this assassinations project.
    Also see this House Select Committee Assassinations writeup on ZRRIFLE.”

    BTW This jfkfacts.org Rexbradford post dated November 2, 2013, titled Phoney 201 [file]….all documents therein forged and backdated’ is missing…backed up? NSA?

  15. I enjoy the comments here, good stuff. As a retired Army vet much of the published info on the rifle and bullets fired by the Warren commission are a cover up. Most rife shots from short distance that hit in front kick them back and they fall from the shock. However if shot on the top of the head from a sniper in a tree or high building the impact can some times push the person forward. In an ambush. As example the people who are in a car or military jeep or HUM-V if shot from the front the are going to fall dead with head to one side just like the JFK photo’s show. More of the true Mexico City, DF, CIA info may be released in 2017. I used to know some ex-service people who lived in Mexico City in the 50′s & 60′, these were friends of the US Embassy who told me story’s of a large surveillance operation going on keeping close (track) observation of the new Cuban “visitors” and yes, some dirty tricks were played!

  16. David Regan says:

    Was the CIA tracking Oswald before the assassination? I would say a resounding yes. We know the FBI and State Department were aware of Oswald as early as 1959, with Hoover advising in 1960 of the possibility that an imposter was using Lee’s birth certificate.

    This CIA memo authored by Thomas Casasin, mentioning ‘operational intelligence interest’ and “laying on interviews” after Oswald’s return to the U.S., is very telling: http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?docId=109985&relPageId=4

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