Who paid for the first JFK conspiracy theory?

The answer: certain employees of the U.S. government’s Central Intelligence Agency, otherwise known as the CIA.

Within hours of JFK’s death on November 22, 1963, members of the Cuban Student Directorate, a CIA-funded organization based in Miami, linked suspected assassin Lee Oswald to Cuban president Fidel Castro. They were “the presumed assassins.” The allegation was published in a special edition of the group’s publication, Trinchera (Trenches) dated November 23, 1963.

This was the first JFK conspiracy theory to reach public print. According to declassified records, it was paid for by a decorated undercover CIA officer, the late George Joannides.

The leaders of the Directorate, also known by its Spanish acronym DRE, received $51,000 a month from the CIA, according to this April 1963 memo found in the JFK Library in Boston.

Within the CIA, the Directorate was known by the code name AMSPELL. The group was “conceived, created and funded by the Agency in September 1960 and terminated in December 1966,” according to a CIA memo, dated April 1967.

“Members were used through 1966 as political action agents for publishing propaganda … and producing radio propaganda and special propaganda campaigns,” the CIA memo states.

Joannides served as chief of psychological warfare operations in the CIA’s Miami station. He also  handled contacts with the DRE, according to his July 31, 1963, job evaluation. In return for CIA support, the group engaged in “intelligence collection, political action and propaganda.”

The DRE’s post-assassination scoop publication emphasized the pro-Castro remarks that Oswald had made during debate on a New Orleans radio program with DRE delegate Carlos Bringuier three months before. Oswald had been exposed as a communist — and now he had killed the president.

He and Castro, the group declared, were “the presumed assassins.” The DRE used its international network to publicize the charge throughout Latin America, according to this document found in the DRE Papers at the University of Miami library.

What Joannides thought of the DRE’s use of CIA funds to publicize its view of Oswald is unknown. The CIA recently admitted for the first time that Joannides maintained a residence in New Orleans as part of his assignment in 1962-64.

The publication was handed out to worshippers arriving at a Catholic Church on Key Biscayne on the morning of November 24, 1963. A FBI agent in the crowd took a copy and filed it at the office.

Thus the first JFK conspiracy theory was published within 48 hours of Kennedy’s murder, and the CIA had paid for it.

Background:

CIA admits undercover officer lived in New Orleans (Nov. 11, 2013)

 5 Decades Later Some JFK FIles Still Sealed (Associated Press, Aus. 18. 2013)

Justice Dept. denies CIA officer was honored for coverup (JFK Facts,Dec. 17, 2012)

Court uphold public benefit of disclsoure about CIA officer in JFK story (JFK Facts, June 19, 2013)

CIA Still Cagey About Oswald Mystery (New York Times, October 17, 2009)

Morley v. CIA: Why I sued the CIA for JFK assassination records (JFK Facts, Feb. 23, 2013)

 

 

 

45 comments

  1. Brad Milch says:

    I don’t recall Vincent Bugliosi (& others like him that routinely label those exploring & analyzing the JFK assassination outside the Warren Report box as ‘kooks’ & ‘silly’) mentioning CIA operative Joannides was behind the very 1st printed conspiracy theory published post-assassination.

    I can’t help but wonder if the CIA funded newsprint was created prior to 22 November 1963 (as was the Viet Nam reversal paperwork sitting on JFK’s desk awaiting signature 21 November 1963 that Johnson later signed).

  2. Chad Brown says:

    One of the pieces of evidence that should be explained by a full theory is the existence of Vincent Bugliosi’s book. I cannot claim to have read all of it but I have read enough to see that is is a legal brief taking one side, and not an even-handed inquiry into the subject. It makes sense that the CIA would have hired Bugliosi to represent it in the “court of public opinion” Also, the mock Oswald trial in London, which can be seen on You Tube, strikes me as very one-sided with Gary Spence, supposedly representing the defense, coming across as relatively incompetent. The trial and the book are too much for most people to tackle on their own, and so they can default to believing them.

    • Ronnie Waynethe says:

      Read Reclaiming Parkland.

    • John Kirsch says:

      Re: what you said about the Bugliosi book as a legal brief (actually an extremely long brief) taking one side — I think you could say the same thing about the Warren Commission report.

    • If you want to read a more accurate trial interpretation, read “The People v. Lee Harvey Oswald.” Bugliosi drowns in deep water in that book, which I had thought at the time would be my first. The Warren Commission’s own “facts” prove Oswald could never have been convicted.

  3. al says:

    Meyer Lansky said he paid for the JFK Bullet. He worked closely with the CIA (via Operation Underworld) and FBI (Blackmailed Hoover with Photos of Gay Relationship). See http://www.noplaceforcorruption.com Docs Section PDF

  4. Karl Golovin says:

    Hmmm…Benefit of the doubt, maybe Joannides/CIjust wanted to get ahead of the curve, to make sure Americans and the world weren’t mislead by other nations’ intelligence agents planting different and even confusing theories or truths in the press. Much more thoughtful to firmly hammer home one timely, direct and simple lie. Nah, more likely just a small aspect of the broader conspiracy to commit treason.

  5. John McAdams says:

    Jeff, you have admitted that the DRE asked the CIA about blaming Castro, and were told by the Agency to hold off.

    But the DRE did it anyway.

    Your claim was that the CIA really wanted them to do it. But then why did the CIA tell them to hold off?

    Did I miss your admitting this in the article above?

    • PBR says:

      There is no allegation in Jeff’s post above that the CIA, “wanted them to do it”. The author has simply stated, correctly and factually, that the CIA paid for this publicity. DRE was a creation of the CIA as the documentary evidence makes clear. Furthermore, the JMWave upper echelons took no steps to actively counter this conspiracy theory in the days and weeks following the massive publicity blitz by DRE. Joannides only asked them to hold off on the initial publication but subsequently stood back and dispensed the funds as DRE continued to aggressively trumpet their ‘Castro did it’ allegation. There is no documentary evidence of a strategy to dilute or challenge the DRE theory by CIA or to bring their paid agents in the DRE to heel. Phillips may have been unhappy by the slipshod and amateurish manner in which Bringuier and his colleagues attempted to tie Castro to the assassination but recorded only mild disapproval. Conclusion? The CIA were content to let the story run. Moreover, they continued to fund DRE until 1966.

      • John McAdams says:

        There is a difference between some group, supported by the CIA, doing something at the behest of the CIA, and the group “going rogue.”

        Jeff wants to imply that the former happened. The evidence is that the latter happened.

        • PBR says:

          The documentary evidence shows that Joannides demanded that all planned actions and operations of DRE be presented to him for approval before clearance would be provided. That was part of the funding deal, the quid pro quo, so to speak. DRE presented their ‘Castro did it’ plan almost immediately after the assassination. At no stage is it recorded that Joannides opposed the plan. The evidence is simply that he asked the DRE to hold off until he, Joannides, could clear the action with Washington. Clearly he was hedging his bets and was keen to test the waters at that early stage. DRE may well have beaten him to the punch. At no stage did Joannides order DRE to stand down. On the contrary, he subsequently stepped back and threw funds at DRE to carry on their propaganda onslaught against Castro. There is no evidence whatsoever to suggest that JMWave officers took serious exception to the subsequent DRE media barrage. Whilst LBJ was moving quickly to scotch the rumour mill, specifically the charge that Castro had a hand in the assassination, the CIA’s assets in DRE were acting in direct conflict with the President’s agenda. No effort was made by CIA to counter the DRE media blitz. No orders to curtail the operation were issued. The,’rogue element’ theory is certainly plausible, but is circumscribed by the inaction of JMWave in the weeks following the assassination and by DRE’s utter dependence on CIA funds and directions. The secrecy of the CIA’s creation, funding and thus promotion of DRE dictated that the provenance of DRE could not be revealed for if it had been, the spotlight would have illuminated the hidden machinations of CI/SIG and JMWave regarding Cuba. As such the plausible deniability option had been kept open to throw any investigation off the scent and Mexico City Station had been kept in the dark as to the clandestine anti-Castro operations being run by Joannides, Phillips et al. The evidence suggests that JMWave were only too keen to distance themselves at this early stage from the DRE campaign against Castro. After all they had wound this particular clock. All they had to do was stand back and watch it strike. To argue that DRE had the financial and political clout to defy or to stand alone against the might of the CIA is simply not credible. DRE disappeared in 1966 as quickly as it had appeared. The CIA shut it down. That’s the real proof as to where the power lay in the relationship.

    • TLR says:

      Of course the Agency claims they told them not to do it. Have you ever heard of “plausible deniability”?

  6. Arnaldo M. Fernandez says:

    The day before the CIA-backed JFK conspiracy theory on Castro behind Oswald reached public print, the same scenario had already been reached by radio.
    Local Miami stations reported [http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?docId=7639] that DRE delegate in New Orleans had debated in August with a member of the Fair Play for Cuba Committee (FPCC) who had just been identified as prime suspect in the JFK assassination.
    The report specified that Oswald had confessed being Marxist during the debate on the New Orleans station WDSU. He was described as former U.S. Marine who traveled to Moscow in 1959, renounced his American citizenship and allegedly lived at Soviet Foreign Minister’s home for two months.
    Thus, the Oswald’s bizarre one-man chapter of FPCC in New Orleans was linked to the Commies, Castro, and the JFK assassination.
    Half a century later, nothing seems to have changed down in South Florida. The 22 November 2013 edition of El Nuevo Herald recycled Bringuier as “the Cuban who faced Oswald.” He sang the same old song: “Now I’m more convinced of Fidel Castro’s complicity.”
    Beneath the academic veneer of the Institute for Cuban and Cuban American Studies (ICCAS) at the University of Miami, Dr. Brian Latell supports the same point of view, by tying the WC report of the lone gunman who shot a magic bullet to the lightest version of the oldest CIA backstop: instead of “Castro did it,” he asserts that “Castro knew it” and did nothing to deter the killing.

  7. Kennedy63 says:

    The probability of a “Grassy Knoll” shooter is a specious argument. You need not argue a truth, or fact, unless the basis of the argument assumes a negative (e.g., no Grassy Knoll shooter). The Z film shows there was a frontal shot, not because of the “back and to the left” motion of JFK’s head and body at impact of missiles, but the preponderance of the evidence for such shot(s). The witnesses who stated they saw a through and through hole in the Lincoln Continental windshield; and, a frontal entry hole in JFK’s throat. Prosectors Humes, Boswell and Finck gave conflicting and incomplete evidentiary testimony regarding the throat wound, although the windshield bullet hole and other evidence supports the frontal entry throat wound. This awareness of a frontal shot favors a frontal head shot. It may not have been fired exactly from the Grassy Knoll, but in close proximity. Chief Curry, riding in the “lead” car in the motorcade, summoned DPD dispatch to “get someone up there on the railroad tracks” as he heard [a] shot(s) coming from that area, as did other witnesses. Several witnesses stated they “felt” the shock wave(s) of the bullet(s) passing near to them/over their heads (the witness: Bill Newman). We have yet to locate, or record the testimony of the two African American witnesses (possibly a male & a female) drinking soda near the small bench atop the knoll area, recessed between the retaining wall and the picket fence, at the time of the shooting of JFK. They may yet be alive. The obvious clue to the frontal shot lay in the “shadows” of this particular area. This area has most dense foliage in Dealy Plaza and presents ideal concealment for a conspirator firing bullets at the President of the United States. Zapruder initially stated he thought the shots came from behind him; not above and behind him. He stood, as most know, atop a level abutment (pergola) before the retaining wall. Please access: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R5JDhi4URds

    • Jordan says:

      Chief Curry knew enough to make sure his car was far far ahead of JFK’s Limo, and LBJ’s car was stopping and the SS agents were getting out as can be seen in Altgens wide photo.
      In fact, it appears as though the entire motorcade was actually stopping prior to the fatal shot(s). That’s off-topic, but just sayin’….

  8. John McAdams says:

    One more thing, Jeff.

    Your own book shows that the CIA in Mexico City was not all all keen to blame Castro.

    Ambassador Mann was the fellow who was gung ho to pin it on Castro. Phillips and Scott were not inclined this way at all.

    • PBR says:

      Scott was ‘out of the loop’, as the book demonstrates conclusively. As such he was all at sea when it came to the DRE operation. Mexico City was demonstrably kept in the dark regarding both what Jane Roman admitted was the ‘operational interest’ in Oswald and the also the need to know activities of DRE such as the anti-FPCC operation in summer 1963. Phillips, on the other hand was absolutely central to these operations. He moved quickly to cover the tracks of CIA sponsorship in the aftermath of the assassination fearing that the paper trail would lead investigators into the clandestine morass of JMWave operations. This in turn would threaten to blow the lid on the CI’s, ‘keen interest’ in Lee Oswald as proven conclusively by the cables signed off by Jane Roman. Naturally Phillips and Joannides were going to distance themselves from the actions of DRE. The logical conclusion can only be that Phillips distanced himself deliberately from the DRE and from it’s theorising regarding the assassination so as to maintain the facade of plausible deniability. That’s an old intelligence ploy. The clincher is that Angleton and his chosen coterie of agents within JMWave took no steps to subdue or quash the alleged insubordination of their DRE assets in the days and weeks following the assassination. Had they been outraged or fearful of the potential fallout of this theory they would have moved quickly and ruthlessly to rein in the DRE whilst mobilising their publicity machine to counter the allegation of Castro involvement. There were no threats to cut off the funding to DRE and CIA assets in the media were not utilised to counter the DRE line. On the contrary, CIA continued to fund the DRE’s onslaught on Castro. It flies in the face of the facts, indeed, it is a subversion of logic (given the subsequent actions of JMWave and their continued funding and support for DRE) to suggest that D.A. Phillips took any meaningful steps to kill,’the Castro did it’ theory in the cradle. After all, Phillips hand was rocking that cradle.

      • John McAdams says:

        Now the theory is getting more complicated. There were “in the loop” CIA people, and “not in the loop” CIA people.

        It seems you are distancing yourself from a large number of conspiracy theorists who insist that Phillips was “in the loop.”

        • GM says:

          @John

          Is “in the loop” not just the same as the need to know basis that Jane Roman talked about in her interview with Jeff Morley in the 1990s?

        • PBR says:

          It is neither complicated, nor is it a theory. It is factual, based on the hard documentary evidence. A group within CI/SAS including Phillips held the knowledge of Oswald’s activities and his contacts with DRE on,” a need to know basis”. Win Scott did not have access to the, ‘latest HDQS info.” on Lee Oswald. Phillips was central to the LIENVOY, AMSPELL and LIENRODE operations all of which to some extent had garnered intelligence on Oswald. The full knowledge of Oswald’s activities was never disseminated to Mexico City. Jane Roman admitted that she had signed off on cables to Mexico City regarding Oswald which contained information that was, “not true”. Furthermore, she admitted that CI/SAS had an operational interest in Oswald’s file. Phillips testified under oath that he was interested in Oswald in the first week of October 1963. The only plausible reason for the withholding of key intelligence from Mexico City was to ensure deniability should the circumstances dictate. To reiterate, it is not complicated, nor is it a theory.

          • John McAdams says:

            But Jeff’s book says that Phillips, like Scott, was not at all keen on blaming Castro.

            So was Phillips involved in a plot to blame Castro or not?

  9. leslie sharp says:

    Where was Hal Hendrix in this scenario of confusion and obfuscation in the immediate aftermath? I thought that Hendrix was the mainstream conduit for the initial dissemination of a description of “Oswald.” Whose payroll was Hendrix on, quite literally?

    If Joannides had a residence in New Orleans, who was his paymaster during that period? Was he drawing a check and or operating funds from HQ, or from the local CIA paymaster? Would his path have crossed with New Orleans attorney Stephen Lehmann?

  10. George Simmons says:

    All of this is great work from Mr Morley.

    I cannot get this angle of the case out of my mind.
    Did the CIA tell the WC that the DRE were CIA assets? No. Did they tell the HSCA? No.

    When the CIA put forward George Joannides as a liason to the HSCA ( despite have an agreement with the HSCA that it would be someone who was non operational in 1963!!) it was a shocking act of deception, absolutely shocking. The CIA did not reveal to the HSCA the role of George Joannides in 1963. The HSCA did not know that the DRE were CIA assets and that George Joannides was the case officer!

    George Blakey described it as a “wilful obstruction of justice”

    But if LHO was just a meaningless loner, then what did the CIA have to hide? If LHO was just a meaningless loner then why would the CIA commit a felony by misleading a congressional investigation into the murder of the president? If LHO was just a meaningless loner then why are the CIA, 50 years later, still fighting in the courts to stop the release of the Joannides records, despite the JFK records act?

    Other researchers/sites seem to skip over/avoid/make allowances for these events. I find that approach quite puzzling.

    Mr Morley is doing excellent work in this area, and that’s what makes JFK Facts the best.

    • John Kirsch says:

      George Simmons, you ask some great questions. I would a few more: Why did top officials at the CIA in Washington take such a keen interest in a struggling young ex-marine in Texas?
      Why did Oswald engage in pro- and anti-Castro activity in New Orleans?
      Why did Oswald have such a strong interest in buying weapons by mail order?
      Why didn’t the U.S. authorities prosecute Oswald after his return to the U.S., despite his having promised to hand over state secrets to the Soviets?
      Why didn’t he immediately try to get out of Dallas after (allegedly) killing JFK?
      Oswald was married, with two small children(the youngest born only about a month before 11/22). He was also employed. Why would he have put all that at risk by assassinating JFK for no reason?

      • Mike Rago says:

        Oswald did not leave Dallas but he did leave the Depository.

        The assassination plan had to call for Oswald to leave the Depository because that is the only way the conspirators could then kill Oswald. They could not kill Oswald if he remained at work.

      • Photon says:

        #1-they didn’t
        #2 He didn’t engage in anti-Castro activity in New Orleans.
        #3 he wanted to kill somebody and that was the easiest way to get weapons anonymously.
        #4 There was no evidence that he passed any State Secrets- or even had any to pass.
        #5 how do you know he didn’t and just wasn’t very good at planning an escape- see Gen. Walker.
        #6 put his marriage at risk? He was already separated, living away from his family and left his wedding ring and all available cash on his wife’s dresser the AM of Nov. 22. His job was so bad that he couldn’t even support his family off of the salary.

        • PBR says:

          1. They most certainly did; http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?mode=searchResult&docId=365
          2. He paraded himself as a member of the FPCC. He also attempted to ingratiate himself with the DRE beforehand. This strange about turn has never been satisfactorily accounted for. Also, there is strong witness and circumstantial evidence to link Oswald to Guy Bannister’s anti-Castro operations in 1963 which cannot be dismissed lightly.
          3. He could have bought a rifle anonymously in any Texas gun store in 1963. Such a purchase would have been untraceable.
          4. The point made is that,’he threatened’ to hand over state secrets, not that he actually did pass secrets. The fact that he did so should have set alarm bells ringing with the US intelligence services and yet he waltzed back into the States on a ticket paid for by the State Department and was never debriefed by the CIA as far as can be ascertained. This is a guy who had worked in Atsugi and who had knowledge of the U2 program as well as security clearance to work as a radar operator. Either this is a case of gross incompetence/negligence on the part of the US intelligence apparatus, particularly the CIA, or there are other, as yet unexplained reasons for the smooth transition of this defector from the USSR back to his homeland. Either way this bizarre series of events has never been satisfactorily accounted for.
          5. The fact that Marion Baker and Roy Truly accosted Oswald on the second floor of the TSBD, drinking a coke just 90 seconds after the assassination, belies the claim that the alleged assassin was in any rush to leave the general area of the alleged sniper’s nest. Thus to suggest that he was rushing at all to exit Dallas, never mind the TSBD, is stretching the bounds of plausibility. The evidence is simply not there to confirm that he had a well thought out getaway plan or that he departed the TSBD in haste.
          6. This point we can agree on. The marriage was certainly under strain. However, the motive for Oswald’s alleged felling of the President has never been satisfactorily established. If we hold that he assassinated JFK so as to go down in History, wherefore his proclamation that he was,”just a patsy!” and his vehement protestations of innocence in front of the world’s media? It’s completely at odds with the official line regarding his motive. To posit that he wanted to achieve undying infamy is both counterintuitive and untenable. There is absolutely no evidence to bolster this tired assumption. It issued forth from the fertile imaginations of the WC staff.

          • Photon says:

            #1 indicative of a “keen interest” to Jane Roman-who was “out of the loop” and not actively involved.
            #2 you have not given any evidence at all that LHO participated in ANY anti-Castro activity.Did you even listen to the radio interview in New Orleans?
            #3 How could he have purchased a weapon ” anonymously in any Texas gun store in 1963″ if he had to personally go through a check- out counter and be seen by a clerk? Mail order purchase in 1963 was an easy way to get inexpensive working firearms with minimal personal information released -and was not uncommon. What is the big deal?
            #4 there was no evidence at all that Oswald knew more about the U2 than anybody else at Atsugi. As the Soviets already knew the airplane’s altitude capabilities from years of overflights and had already perfected a means to shoot it down any info that Oswald could have supplied was superfluous . Even after Oswald volunteered to turn over confidential info the Soviets refused to grant him asylum- reflecting the lack of any intelligence value in LHO.Nobody really cared about Oswald’s supposed ” information” because he didn’t have any- as was obvious to each side.
            How many previous defectors that returned to the US were refused re-entry ? Aside from active duty personnel, were any of them charged with anything?
            #5 the Baker-Truly story confirms that Oswald was in the TSBD at the time of the shooting. His last witnessed position before the shooting was on the sixth floor. Repeated timed movements from the sixth floor to the lunchroom have proven that Oswald had ample time to get there unrushed .Within 5 minutes he had left not just the TSBD but the general area. No other TSBD employee traveled so far so fast.
            #6 guilty parties never claim that they are innocent? No motive and yet in 24 hours the failure that was Lee Oswald went from being nobody to a world figure, being interviewed by the world press and 3 US networks.
            As someone who expected the press to cover his return from the Soviet Union and expressed great annoyance at their absence from his homecoming a motive becomes quite clear, if never stated clearly.

          • PBR says:

            In response to Photon below;

            1. Not only have we Roman’s admission. We have the signatures on this cable from the top players in CI/SIG. They were following Oswald closely, of this there can be no doubt. Phillips testified under oath that he had developed an interest in Oswald in the first week of October 1963. They most certainly did have a keen interest in this individual. Had he been a non-entity as posited by Warren theorists, or a,’blip’ as claimed later by D.A.Phillips why was he being closely observed by the upper echelons of CI and SAS? Why the need to hide Oswald’s activities from the staff at Mexico City station? Why was John Whitten pulled off the Oswald investigation by Angleton after the assassination? Clearly Oswald was not just your average citizen.
            2. The leaflets stamped 544 Camp Street? Eyewitness testimony from Delphine Roberts, Jack Martin, the Campbell brothers and Caire regarding Oswald’s relationship with Guy Bannister? And yes, I have listened to N.O radio interview and watched Oswald’s performance on the TV v Bringuier. Fascinating. As an aside, I hear an articulate, confident young man. Not a deranged sybarite as portrayed later by the Warren Commission. I can’t help but wonder if, as opponents of the official line argue, he was indeed an agent provocateur. It is an interesting theory and not without merit. Conversely the bizarre sequence of events surrounding Oswald’s short FPCC campaign raises many questions as to his motivation and agenda. A one man chapter of a pro-Castro organisation who lies to FPCC HQ and before brawling with DRE in N.O. writes to FPCC HQ to tell them that he had had a confrontation with anti- Castro Cubans. Not long after his arrest and his appearance on TV with Stuckey and Bringuier his brief flirtation with the FPCC ends abruptly. Hardly the hallmark of a genuinely committed supporter of the Castro cause. And all this at a time when the FBI and CIA are running a psyop against the FPCC. Strange indeed.
            3. The point is that although a store clerk may or may not have been able to recall Oswald purchasing a rifle and thus give eyewitness testimony, there would be no paper trail. Much less chance of hard evidence to charge or convict the accused. Eyewitness testimony is notoriously unreliable. To plan an assassination of such magnitude and to lay a paper trail to your doorstep is incomprehensible for a man of even average intelligence. The mail order trail was essentially the clincher in convicting Oswald in the public mind as it linked him to the Carcano. It simply makes no sense if he wanted to kill and maintain deniability in the event of his being captured.
            4. The point is not what volume of information he could disseminate. It is that he had information that certainly would have been of use to the Russians. Even lower grade intelligence such as the layout of bases, command structure, troop dispositions and deployments is prized by foreign intelligence agencies. He was in a position to offer them classified information on the U2, radar capabilities and missions. Whatever the level of his knowledge the US intelligence agencies knew that he was a defector who had threatened to offer information to the Soviets. At the very least they should have suspected that Oswald would be approached by the KGB and debriefed or interrogated. It has never been satisfactorily explained why he was not debriefed when he returned to the US, or if he was debriefed, by whom and when. If he was not debriefed it was staggering incompetence/negligence on behalf of the US intelligence community and CIA in particular. If he was debriefed, why no records? The only source for the claim that the Soviets had no interest in Oswald was Nosenko. No evidence or documents exist to support Nosenko’s claim. Indeed, no proof has ever surfaced that Nosenko was a bona fide defector. It could equally be argued that the Soviets knocked Oswald back as they believed that he was a US intelligence operative. Schweiker, with access to classified intelligence files for his investigation, claimed that Oswald was perhaps just that, an agent, and that the Soviets had perhaps played along with Oswald or even doubled him and sent him back to the US, ” to fake us out”. The point is not that Oswald should have been refused re-entry to the US. It is that he should at the very least have been thoroughly debriefed on his return. Oswald had been with the USMC and had worked as a radar operator with security clearance just before he absconded to the USSR. Technically he was still on active duty when he left the USA. Why make an exception for Oswald when other defectors had been charged with treasonable offences?
            5. Wrong. His last witnessed position before the shooting was in the second floor lunch room. Carolyn Arnold, shocked by having her statement misreported by the FBI in 1963, set the record straight to the HSCA and to author Anthony Summers when she attested that she had seen Oswald in the lunchroom at 12.15pm. The last known employee on the sixth floor before the shooting was Bonnie Ray Williams. What are the repeated time movements to which you refer? What evidence is there that Oswald left the building within 5 minutes of the shooting?
            6. The Warren Report essentially claimed that Oswald’s motive was to go down in history as the assassin of the President. There is no evidence whatsoever to substantiate this claim. He denied the killing of both Tippit and Kennedy vehemently from the time of his arrest until his sudden death. He made it clear that he denied the charges,”emphatically” and that he was, “just a patsy!” In the absence of any reasonably sustainable motive the Warren Commission simply dreamt one up. Pure, unadulterated and shameless speculation.

          • PBR says:

            Ps. an addendum to no.4:
            Your chronology regarding the Russians’ development of the capability to take down the U2 is erroneous. They did not, by the time of Oswald’s defection, have a fully developed anti-aircraft missile capable of taking out the U2. The Soviets downed Gary Powers in May 1960. This was the first time a U2 had been shot down. Oswald had been in Russia for seven months by that time, since mid October 1959. A series of U2 flights into Soviet airspace had taken place between October 1959 and May 1960 and had not been fired upon. Oswald’s defection pre-dated the development and completion of the S-75 Divina missile. The ceiling height of the U2 was classified information to which Oswald had access. The S-75 that took powers down was the first ever S-75 to be fired. That’s almost 7 months after Oswald arrived in the USSR. Given the facts it is axiomatic that Oswald was in a position to offer information to the Soviets which would have helped to refine their weapons systems.

          • PBR says:

            Pps In the interest of precision I should say that the missile that downed powers was the upgraded, newest version, the S-75 Dvina 750VN (13D) missile.

  11. Jonathan says:

    I don’t care who promoted the the idea LHO killed Kennedy. I care about facts.

    The main fact is no one can tie LHO to the killing. Not John McAcadams, Jean Davison, or Photon.

    They cannot because they cannot place him in a position to fire the alleged assassin weapon at JFK.

    That does not mean LHO had some role in the assassination.

    It only means he was possibly one of a group of characters.

    • Photon says:

      Then where was he at 12:30 on Nov. 22 and why didn’t anybody else see him at that time- except Brennan?

      • Paulf says:

        “Why didn’t anybody see him” is not evidence, on fact it is the opposite.

        Let’s say you are Prosecutor Photon, and trying LHO for the murder of the president. What is your evidence beyond a reasonable doubt? That he must have been there because he wasn’t somewhere else? Hahaha. Try that in court and get laughed out.

        You can’t tie the gun to him, can’t prove he was in the window, can’t demonstrate he did anything other than work at the depository when the president was shot. Motive is not a mandatory element to prove in court, but you have no factual basis for a motive, either. Supposition that he wanted attention is not remotely proof, especially since he denied that in public and presumably would do so again if he testified.

      • PBR says:

        Brennan hardly stands out as a credible witness. He was led by the hand while giving his WC testimony and moreover was unable to positively identify Oswald in a line up. Well, at least until well after the line up and after he had seen Oswald’s photo and heard the official line that Oswald was the killer of Tippit and was suspected of killing JFK. He later excused his inability or unwillingness to identify Oswald by claiming that he felt his life might be in danger from communists if he did so. When asked by counsel Belin why, if Oswald was under lock and key and unable to cause harm to anyone, he did not positively identify him thereby risking Oswald’s release, Brennan made reference again to the communist threat and elaborated by saying that he knew at that stage that law enforcement had their man and thus he did not have to identify Oswald as the shooter on the sixth floor. This explanation beggars belief. Brennan’s testimony is shot through with inconsistencies. Any standard cross examination would have shredded Brennan’s credibility rapidly. Why, when he was standing in the company of other individuals (as depicted in photos from the time) did no other individual see a man resembling Oswald in the window? Why did Brennan not draw the others’ attention to a man with a rifle in the window until he talked with a law enforcement officer after the fact? Is it surprising that, having returned home after the assassination and having seen Oswald’s picture twice on the TV, that he would agree with the already disseminated story that Oswald was the killer of Tippit and therefore the killer of JFK? In his testimony to the Warren Commission it was obviously a matter of, “Well I couldn’t identify him at the time but I can identify him now having seen his photo on the television.” Brennan testified that he spoke to SA Forrest Sorrells, “shorter than 10 minutes” after the shooting. That would have been at 1240pm or slightly before. The difficulty with this testimony the implication of which was, incredibly, ignored by McCloy and Belin was that Sorrells had gone to Parkland and was in Parkland when this conversation with Mr. Brennan allegedly occurred. Sorrels testified that he had returned to the Plaza between 20 and 25 minutes after the shots were fired at 12.50/55pm. How that circle can be squared is beyond me. Photographic evidence shows Brennan facing the motorcade, looking away from the TSBD at the time of the shots. He may have seen a shooter in the TSBD but given his rambling and often contradictory if not dishonest testimony his post line up identification of Oswald is shot through with a heavy dash of reasonable doubt. To conclude then, no credible witness can, as Chief Jesse Curry admitted later, put Oswald on the sixth floor with a rifle at the time of the shooting.

  12. leslie sharp says:

    Jonathan: “The main fact is no one can tie LHO to the killing. Not John McAcadams, Jean Davison, or Photon.”

    As I understand the argument posed by McAdams, Davison and Photon et al – representatives of the Warren Commission report – Oswald shot Kennedy from the 6th Floor, fled down the stairs (lets not address the various complications introduced by eyewitnesses as this juncture), stopped for a Coke, encountered his boss and a Dallas police officer, left the building undeterred, caught a bus, a cab, jumped out en route to his room, changed clothes, grabbed a gun, shot another police officer and “fled” into a highly public space.

    Beyond those “facts,” what I read is a spaghetti bowl of testimony and conflagration of information that proves nothing, ergo I agree with you: no one can tie LHO to the killing.

    • John Kirsch says:

      Don’t forget that Oswald offered to give up his cab to an elderly lady, according to the Bible, aka, Warren report. Is that the kind of behavior you would expect from someone who had just assassinated the president of the united states?

      • rollo says:

        LHO must certainly have been one cool customer. Then later he got the drop on a veteran police officer who was also an Airborne veteran of the Battle of the Bulge.

        • Photon says:

          Get a drop on? Even a Chris Kyle could get shot by a nobody.

          • rollo says:

            Weren’t they all socializing together at a shooting range? Rather different from a potential arrest situation.

          • leslie sharp says:

            The former soldier, a war veteran, who shot Kyle was suffering and Kyle was attempting to help him.

        • John Kirsch says:

          Someone once said that Oswald must have been the only assassin in history to try and get away using public transportation.
          It would be like a bank robber man lugging the bag of money with him out on the street and hailing a taxi or waiting for the bus.

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