Bernie channels Harry: In call to abolish CIA, Sanders followed in footsteps of Truman

Bernie Sanders is in good company.

In 1945 Harry Truman initially rejected proposals for a peacetime secret intelligence agency saying he didn’t want to create “an American Gestapo.”

In 1961 John F. Kennedy famously described his desire to “splinter the CIA into a thousand pieces and scatter it into the winds” after the disastrous Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba.

In 1963, a month after JFK was killed under suspicious circumstances–and the CIA’s cover-up of malfeasance in the wrongful death of the president was just beginning–Truman called for the abolition of the clandestine service.

Ten years later, in 1974, Bernie Sanders echoed Truman. Now Sander’s idea has been revived again, and Hilary Clinton senses a talking point. But she should answer the implicit question: How well are we really served by our clandestine service?

Source: In 1974 Call to Abolish CIA, Sanders Followed in Footsteps of JFK, Truman

62 comments

  1. Bill Banks says:

    My guess is that Truman in 1964 was referring to very large CIA presence in Vietnam with no reference to Dallas. Office of Policy Coordination was instituted in 1948 as the clandestine action arm with sponsorship of a soon disillusioned George Kennan.

    “Although fifteen years later Truman would claim that he had not intended the CIA to become the covert-action arm of the U.S. government, it was he who, in 1948, authorized the first postwar covert-action programs, although he did not at first assign the responsibility to the CIA. Instead he created a largely separate organization called the Office of Policy Coordination (OPC), and named a former OSS man, Frank G. Wisner, Jr., to be its chief. Truman did not go to Congress for authority to form OPC. He did it with a stroke of the presidential pen, by issuing a secret National Security Council Intelligence directive, NSC 10/2. (The CIA proviced OPC with cover and support, but Wisner reported directly to the secretaries of State and Defense.)” Marchetti & Marks p.45

    http://operation-gladio.net/office-policy-coordination

    • Jean Davison says:

      I agree with you, Bill, that Truman was probably referring to the CIA’s activities in foreign countries. For instance, his article says:

      “I never had any thought that when I set up the CIA that it would be injected into peacetime cloak and dagger operations. Some of the complications and embarrassment I think we have experienced are in part attributable to the fact that this quiet intelligence arm of the President has been so removed from its intended role that it is being interpreted as a symbol of sinister and mysterious foreign intrigue—and a subject for cold war enemy propaganda.”

      Truman’s Washington Post article:

      http://www.maebrussell.com/Military/CIA%20War%20in%20Vietnam.html

      • “and a subject for cold war enemy propaganda.”~Truman via Jean Davison

        But is this a realistic assessment in a situation of global news services? Is it a rational view that ‘propaganda’ can be restricted to “foreign enemies” in the actual situation at hand?

        Those familiar with the book ‘A Nation of Sheep’ by William Lederer, would understand that the technique of planting stories in other parts of the world, that would then bleed into the domestic audience was well understood by the Public Relations Regime of the late 50’s early 60’s.

        I doubt that Turman himself was a sophisticated enough intellectual to understand deep PR and ‘spin’, but it was certainly going on at the time.
        \\][//

      • Bill Banks says:

        Yes, Jean the Arthur Krock article is the sort of thing I think Truman was referring to. (As an aside, Lodge wanted Diem removed [permanently?] and CIA had misgivings.) Truman’s CIA was to be a largely analytical construct. BUT the Office of Policy Coordination had been established in 1948 for more active measures, including paramilitary. It was subsequently folded into the CIA by 1952. Truman’s article in retirement does not reflect the practice of his administration. I

  2. Jordan says:

    An American Gestapo is exactly what evolved. Where the Agency is above all with allegiance only to the Agency.

    • Operation Mongoose is blamed on Kennedy, but the facts are as presented on this link, Kennedy refused to sanction assassinations:

      Goodwin recalled that, after President Kennedy asked Szule for his reaction to the suggestion that Castro be assassinated, President Kennedy said, “Well that’s the kind of thing I’m never going to do.”
      (Goodwin, 7/8/75 pp, 4 – 11)

      A few days after the meeting with Szule and Goodwin, Kennedy made his speech of November 16, 1961:

      “We cannot, as a free nation, compete with our adversaries in tactics of terror, assassination, false promises, counterfeit mobs and crisis.” (Public Papers of the Presidents, John F. Kennedy, 1961, pg.274)

      https://www.maryferrell.org/showDoc.html?docId=1156#relPageId=153
      \\][//

      • Bill Clarke says:

        Willy Whitten
        February 23, 2016 at 10:17 pm

        Operation Mongoose is blamed on Kennedy, but the facts are as presented on this link, Kennedy refused to sanction assassinations:

        Or Whitten, if you want to be honest about, it Mongoose is blamed on JFK because he and his brother started it, funded it and ran it. You don’t have to do a DNA test on Mongoose to know who the daddy was.

        ____________________________________________________
        In November 1961 Kennedy approved Operation Mongoose, a secret plan aimed at stimulating a rebellion in Cuba that the United States could support. From November 1961 to October 1962 a Special Group (Augmented), whose membership was the same as the Special Group plus Attorney General Robert Kennedy and General Taylor (as Chairman), exercised responsibility for Operation Mongoose, a major covert action program aimed at overthrowing the Castro regime in Cuba.

        http://www.globalsecurity.org/intell/ops/mongoose.htm

      • The controversy over what Mongoose policy actually was rests on whether one thinks President Kennedy was sincere when he said:

        “Well that’s [assassination] the kind of thing I’m never going to do.”

        There is a parallel development that was in process in the same time period, the Northwoods proposal, developed by the same people. Landsdale is cited as the actual author of the Northwoods plan.

        Kennedy rejected that out of hand in disgust. Kennedy removed Lemnitzer as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs after being presented with the plan signed off on by the general.

        One fact should stand spotlighted on this situation; Castro was never assassinated, nor was there ever a successful counter-revolution in Cuba. Why this is so can only be surmised. One possibility, is that Kennedy would not approve of certain specific plans that went too far according to his principles.

        If it is assumed that CIA covert operators always acted under the final wishes of the President, the prospect I propose above is plausible.

        If it is assumed that CIA was in effect a rogue agency at this time, all bets are off, and anything is possible.
        \\][//

        • Bill Clarke says:

          Willy Whitten
          February 24, 2016 at 11:31 am

          “The controversy over what Mongoose policy actually was rests on whether one thinks President Kennedy was sincere when he said:”

          Are you talking to me here Whitten? I knew you would! Again I remind you that JFK (and all politicians)say one thing and do another. Don’t tell me what he said but tell me what he did.

          “There is a parallel development that was in process in the same time period, the Northwoods proposal, developed by the same people. Landsdale is cited as the actual author of the Northwoods plan.”

          Show me this “cite” for Landsdale. I don’t think you have one. Northwoods was a baby of the Joint Chiefs and that is one reason JFK fired Lemnitzer. Please note JFK did not fire Lansdale at this time. This would be, Whitten, because Lansdale had nothing to do with Northwoods.

          “One fact should stand spotlighted on this situation; Castro was never assassinated, nor was there ever a successful counter-revolution in Cuba. Why this is so can only be surmised. One possibility, is that Kennedy would not approve of certain specific plans that went too far according to his principles.”

          Or it could be that it was a damn fool plan doomed to failure from the start. The fact that Bobby raised hell at the CIA for the failure of these plans would indicate that they were not going far enough to suit the Kennedy boys.

          • Tom S. says:

            Bill, you’ve called Willy out, and you’ve posted no supporting links of your own points. If Willy replies, and if you intend to respond,
            after his reply here, please respond to his reply in the current “Comment of the week,” thread instead of in this discussion thread. We won’t know if yours and Willy’s ongoing interaction is having the effect I am concerned it is having, unless it is limited in each thread, and then contained in a thread devoted to that purpose. It seems a fairer arrangement to all.

        • “In addition to Operation Northwoods, under the Operation Mongoose program the U.S. Department of Defense had a number of similar proposals to be taken against the Cuban regime of Fidel Castro.

          Twelve of these proposals come from a 2 February 1962 memorandum entitled “Possible Actions to Provoke, Harass or Disrupt Cuba,” written by Brig. Gen. William H. Craig and submitted to Brig. Gen. Edward Lansdale, the commander of the Operation Mongoose project.[12][6]

          The memorandum outlines Operation Bingo, a plan to “create an incident which has the appearance of an attack on U.S. facilities (GMO) in Cuba, thus providing an excuse for use of U.S. military might to overthrow the current government of Cuba.”

          […]
          Even after General Lemnitzer lost his job as the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Joint Chiefs of Staff still planned false-flag pretext operations at least into 1963. A different U.S. Department of Defense policy paper created in 1963 discussed a plan to make it appear that Cuba had attacked a member of the Organization of American States (OAS) so that the United States could retaliate. The U.S. Department of Defense document says of one of the scenarios, “A contrived ‘Cuban’ attack on an OAS member could be set up, and the attacked state could be urged to take measures of self-defense and request assistance from the U.S. and OAS.”

          The plan expressed confidence that by this action, “the U.S. could almost certainly obtain the necessary two-thirds support among OAS members for collective action against Cuba.”[13][14]

          Included in the nations the Joint Chiefs suggested as targets for covert attacks were Jamaica and Trinidad-Tobago. Since both were members of the British Commonwealth, the Joint Chiefs hoped that by secretly attacking them and then falsely blaming Cuba, the United States could incite the people of the United Kingdom into supporting a war against Castro.[13]
          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Northwoods
          Also see:
          http://whatreallyhappened.com/WRHARTICLES/northwoods.html
          \\][//

    • Jordan says:

      I should perhaps restate that. An American Gestapo is exactly what was imported.

  3. Bill Clarke says:

    “According to an article in Politico,” Sanders complained that the CIA was only accountable to “right-wing lunatics who use it to prop up fascist dictatorships.”

    Looking back to 1974 I’d have to say Sanders hit the nail on the head. They came no worse than Nixon and the despicable Kissinger. And they both loved to use the CIA. I might point out what I have said many times here; we should be investigating the president that gave the CIA the order and mission as much or more as we do the CIA. But the CIA was set up so that the president could deny these “missions” to a plausible degree. As Helms said, “You won’t see it on paper …..but.

    Truman I think was a true believer. He didn’t like the OSS and he didn’t like the CIA. I think he harked back to the age in which “gentlemen did not read other gentlemen mail”. Now that is very honorable indeed but it will get your throat cut today.

    And Jack’s popular quote about “scatter it into the winds”. Did he do it? No, he didn’t. Why not? The dastardly SOBs killed him before he could!

    Well that might be but what happened during the considerable time JFK had from the time he made the quote until he ran out of time that day in Dallas.

    He used the CIA to run Operation Mongoose; that is what happened. The immoral operation to overthrow Castro and his economy by sabotage and raids. Was this not one of the largest CIA operations to date? Seems that it was. And then he used the CIA to overthrow Ngo Dinh Diem, hardly a high point in our history.

    Always look at what they do. Not what they say.

    • “Always look at what they do. Not what they say.”~Bill Clarke

      Perhaps it would be wise to be sure of what it is proposed “they” have done before assessing the situation. We are dealing with COVERT operations in this discussion. This fact should never be lost sight of.

      One can never be absolutely certain of what is to be found in “official records” – especially records that were meant to be National Security Secrets. Never forget Orwell’s concept of the Memory Hole; and how those who control present, control the past and those who control the past control the future.

      In this assessment, the actual effects that are adequately known can be determined with any assurance.
      \\][//

  4. Of course Sanders was a big supporter of the Marxist Sandinistas in the 1980s.

    So does he dislike right-wing dictatorships? Sure. But because they are right-wing, not because they are dictatorships. The left wing ones he was fine with.

    • Tom S. says:

      So, Dr. McAdams, if one was not a supporter of a former Coca-Cola bottling executive CIA sponsored puppet, and
      one believed in U.S. non-intervention in the internal politics in dreadfully screwed up Nicaragua in the aftermath
      of the US sponsored, Somoza family dictatorship that had done a yeoman’s job of equitable distribution of wealth
      and political influence in that remnant of a sovereign nation, one deserves to be tarred by the long arm of Harvard
      PhD, associate Poli-Sci professor, John McAdams? Is it really that simple?

      http://www.politico.com/story/2015/07/the-foreign-minister-of-burlington-vt-120839
      “Not only was the war against Nicaragua illegal and immoral, it was an outrageous waste of taxpayer money. As a mayor, I wanted more federal funds for affordable housing and economic development,” Sanders wrote in his memoir….

      Actual crimes were committed and covered up by President Ronald Reagan, pursuant to the criticism you redirect at
      Sanders. You can attempt to rewrite history at the risk of your own reputation.

      • Actual crimes were committed and covered up by President Ronald Reagan, pursuant to the criticism you redirect at Sanders. You can attempt to rewrite history at the risk of your own reputation.

        You can huff and puff all you want about Somoza, but that doesn’t change the fact that the Sandinistas were nasty Marxist authoritarians.

        • Well, if the “professor” wishes to use juvenile terminology in his commentary here…

          He can flap and quack about the “nasty Marxist authoritarians” – but that doesn’t alter the fact that Somoza was a murderous fascist dictator put into power by the United States.
          \\][//

          • the fact that Somoza was a murderous fascist dictator put into power by the United States.

            Dislike Somoza all you want, but Bernie Sanders supported a nasty, authoritarian Marxist regime.

            Had he simply said “a plague on both their houses,” that would have been understandable.

            When somebody huffs and puffs about the evils of right wing authoritarian regimes, and doesn’t mind left wing authoritarian regimes, they clearly don’t mind authoritarian regimes at all.

            They are just left wingers.

          • Tom S. says:

            When somebody huffs and puffs about the evils of right wing authoritarian regimes, and doesn’t mind left wing authoritarian regimes, they clearly don’t mind authoritarian regimes at all.

            They are just left wingers.

            “Balance” ? You criticize Sanders for a lack of neutrality? Congress passed and Reagan endorsed a $100 million expenditure appropriated to illegally intrude in a sovereign entity’s internal political dynamic, primarily funding a right wing paramillitary insurgency, and that was reasonable, and Sander’s protests of that expenditure of taxpayer funds were unreasonable, unbalanced?

            US foreign policy did as much as any other influence to install Somoza in their first place, and then to maintain his rule.

            What on earth are you talking about, Dr. McAdams? The extreme bent of your mindset, coupled with your belligerence toward
            those who are not of extreme right political orientation is regularly and unabashedly presented.

            http://www.politico.com/story/2015/07/the-foreign-minister-of-burlington-vt-120839
            …..
            In June 1986, the House of Representatives voted to send $100 million in U.S. military aid to Nicaragua’s contra rebels. It was a major victory for Ronald Reagan’s hardline anti-communist foreign policy…..
            ….
            Through it all, Sanders directly linked his city’s mundane struggles with issues like housing and infrastructure to the grandest geopolitical themes. “Not only was the war against Nicaragua illegal and immoral, it was an outrageous waste of taxpayer money. As a mayor, I wanted more federal funds for affordable housing and economic development,” Sanders wrote in his memoir….

          • J.D. says:

            Dislike Sanders all you want, but Ronald Reagan committed impeachable acts in the Iran-Contra scandal, and deserved to be impeached and removed from office, not hailed forever after as a great hero and getting his name stamped on every airport.

          • Ronnie Wayne says:

            Bells are ringing here Willy. The Flap and Quack, isn’t that a bar in Washington?

          • Ronnie Wayne says:

            JD I wish there was a like button. Living Texas, this is an unpopular view.

          • What on earth are you talking about, Dr. McAdams? The extreme bent of your mindset, coupled with your belligerence toward those who are not of extreme right political orientation is regularly and unabashedly presented.

            You are giving away your own left-wing politics.

            You have a right to that, but when it causes you to embrace ill-founded conspiracy theories, it’s a fault.

        • Marcus Tullius Cicero
          “A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murderer is less to fear.”

    • Jordan says:

      The issue was not who was in power, the issue was who put them in power….

  5. Kennedy’s “scatter it to the winds” comment apparently really happened. But he did not in fact do any such thing.

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

    http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/context5.htm#splinter

    He had two and a half years to do that after his comment, and he did not.

    The New York Times, in the article that quoted that “scatter it to the winds” comment, noted:

    It found that the C.I.A., for all its fearsome reputation, is under far more stringent political and budgetary control than most of its critics know or concede, and that since the Bay of Pigs disaster in Cuba in 1961 those controls have been tightly exercised.

    • McAdams,
      Most of the readership here is aware that the New York Times is a prime nesting ground for Mockingbirds. That being a mouthpiece for CIA.
      \\][//

    • Jean Davison says:

      JFK’s “scatter it to the winds” is often quoted, but less well-known is this response in his Oct. 9, 1963 press conference:

      QUOTE:
      Q. Mr. President, could you discuss some of the recent public accounts of CIA activities in South Viet-Nam, particularly the stories or reports of how the CIA has undertaken certain independent operations, or independent of other elements of the American Government, that are in South Viet-Nam?

      THE PRESIDENT. I must say I think the reports are wholly untrue. The fact of the matter is that Mr. McCone sits in the National Security Council. I imagine I see him at least three or four times a week, ordinarily. We have worked very closely together in the National Security Council in the last a [sic] months attempting to meet the problems we faced in South Viet-Nam. I can find nothing, and I have looked through the record very carefully over the last 9 months, and I could go back further, to indicate that the CIA has done anything but support policy. It does not create policy; it attempts to execute it in those areas where it has competence and responsibility. I know that the transfer of Mr. John Richardson, who is a very dedicated public servant, has led to surmises. But I can just assure you flatly that the CIA has not carried out independent activities but has operated under close control of the Director of Central Intelligence, operating with the cooperation of the National Security Council and under my instructions.
      UNQUOTE

      http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/index.php?pid=9460

    • J.D. says:

      Since you’re fond of citing your own website, let’s take a closer look at your own sources.

      Of the eight sources cited in the first essay you link to (http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/jfk_cia.htm), the first is a conservative publication known for a number of journalistic flubs, including misquoting Abraham Lincoln:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Insight_on_the_News

      The second is The New York Times, which is a reasonable source.

      The third (“Spymasters” by Ralph Weber) is a book of interviews with former CIA officials. A reasonable primary source, if used carefully.

      The fourth is a 1991 biography of John F. Kennedy that was widely criticized by reviewers for its prurient fixation on the president’s sex life and absence of original research.

      https://www.kirkusreviews.com/book-reviews/thomas-c-reeves/a-question-of-character/
      http://www.nytimes.com/1991/06/02/books/he-was-no-jack-kennedy.html

      The fifth is a book by Gus Russo, a well-regarded researcher. A reasonable source.

      The sixth (“Flawed By Design” by Amy Zegart) is a study of intelligence failures that seems to be well-reviewed.

      The seventh is a memoir by Richard Bissell, who was fired by JFK. He is hardly an unbiased observer.

      The eighth and final source cited is an internal study by the CIA itself.

      Of the essay’s 28 citations, 11 use CIA sources: seven citations of “Spymasters,” one of Bissell’s book, and three to the CIA study. Eleven more use questionable sources (two citations of the “Insight on the News” article and nine of Reeves’s poorly reviewed anti-Kennedy biography).

      This leaves only six citations of the most reliable sources: one citation of The New York Times, two of Russo’s book, and three of Zegart’s.

      In short, this essay relies almost entirely upon biased or questionable sources to argue its point. There are no references to any sources newer than 1999 and no references to any biographers who are at all sympathetic to the Kennedys. Finally, there are no sources cited at all for much of the essay, including such claims as “Any animosity (between JFK and the CIA) had completely disappeared by 1963.”

      This is scholarship that leaves a lot to be desired.

      • I think your definition of “reliable sources” is sources that are relatively sycophantic toward Kennedy.

        Such sources are obviously going to play down Kennedy’s involvement in things the sources consider “dirty” or questionable. Would Schlesinger make you happy? He was the Court Historian.

        Further, the sources you admit are good ones tell the same story as the others.

        • Tom S. says:

          Thank heavens there are few or no sources intent on assassinating the reputation of the assassinated President. Such an organized phenomena is preposterous to even mention. Forget I brought up the possibility.

          Dr. McAdams, I am quite confident your interest in the Kennedy Assassination is purely professional and nonpartisan. What other explanation for your outsized commitment could be reasonably advanced? I wish everyone would accept that, despite your frequent statements and actions to the contrary.

          • I wish everyone would accept that, despite your frequent statements and actions to the contrary.

            What is the world does that mean?

            (I ask, afraid that I’ll get the usual Tom answer, and still be puzzled as to what he has in mind.)

          • Tom S. says:

            http://jfkfacts.org/assassination/news/in-1974-call-to-abolish-cia-sanders-follows-in-footsteps-of-jfk-truman/#comment-859549
            John McAdams
            February 24, 2016 at 8:46 pm
            I think your definition of “reliable sources” is sources that are relatively sycophantic toward Kennedy….

            John McAdams – In reply to Tom S..

            I wish everyone would accept that, despite your frequent statements and actions to the contrary.

            What is the world does that mean?

            (I ask, afraid that I’ll get the usual Tom answer, and still be puzzled as to what he has in mind.)

            Dr. McAdams, considering your field of expertise is political science, I was sarcastically expressing my consternation over
            your expressed concern over “sources that are relatively sycophantic toward Kennedy.” I’m willing to bet you are more concerned over what you regard as the distorted effect of “relatively sycophantic” treatment of Kennedy’s record and reputation, than you are about global warming.

            My sarcasm is driven by these details. JFK was suddenly assassinated less than three years into the only term of his presidency. Five years later, his brother Robert was assassinated only hours after his first place finish in the democratic presidential primary of the country’s most populous state.

            Despite the vacuum suddenly resulting in the immediacy of the loss of these two leading democrats, both occurring less than a year before the 1964 and then the 1968 presidential contests, and the untolled impact of the loss of those
            two brothers beyond 1968, I can understand your concern over your perceived sycophantic effect.

            We cannot know the extent of the positive advantage the loss of the Kennedy brothers gave the republican party, or the extent to which this advantage was exploited in 1968 and later.

            Your concern over a sycophantic boost somehow enjoyed by these murdered brothers, neither afforded the opportunity to attempt to rehabilitate their negatives, as even Nixon took advantage of the opportunity to do later in his life, seems born
            of your own insecurities. A person with your specialized knowledge and discernment is understandably cursed, knowing the
            potemkin village status of the republican party as a national politcal power.

            The news media you probably consider impregnated with a liberal bias, fortunately holds the dirty little secret close.
            But, if I know, I can assume the media and you certainly know.

            I’ll make my point crystal clear now. Despite the loss to democrats of both of the Kennedy brothers, this is a description of the performance of republican presidential slates, the party nominees running for the office of president and vice-president, since the morning after the presidential vote in 1928. The time span is nearly 87 years and four months since that republican victory day in November 1928. Bear in mind, it also includes the outcome of the presidential election of 2000, influenced by the official actions in Florida of then Gov. Jeb Bush, FL Sec. of State Katherine Harris, and a ruling by a republican appointed majority in the US Supreme Court.

            This assessment does not even need to be confirmed through google. In the past 87 years and four months, no republican party presidential ticket has prevailed in an election unless Nixon or father or son George Bush was on the ticket, and in
            2000, even that was almost not enough!

            Dr. McAdams, burdened as you surely must be, under the weight of that 87 year republican ticket performance, I understand why your concern is about assassinated JFK receiving undeserved credit from “relatively sycophantic” sources!

          • In the past 87 years and four months, no republican party presidential ticket has prevailed in an election unless Nixon or father or son George Bush was on the ticket, and in 2000, even that was almost not enough!

            Is this like the Kennedy/Lincoln assassination parallels? Maybe like the “zero factor” that says that every president elected in a year that ends with zero will die in office?

        • J.D. says:

          No, my definition of “reliable sources” is the same as anyone else’s. I don’t think Gus Russo or The New York Times can be described as “sycophantic toward Kennedy.”

          Schlesinger was a well-regarded historian who happened to be biased toward the Kennedys, largely because he knew them personally. Yes, his work is still worth consulting and using (carefully, of course), certainly more so than the critically panned anti-JFK biography that essay references more than any other.

          You don’t seem to mind that nearly half of the references to an essay about the relationship between JFK and the CIA come from CIA sources, or that most of the others come from sources whose credibility has been repeatedly called into question. It seems you don’t mind biased or untrustworthy sources as long as they put President Kennedy in a poor light.

      • J.D. excellent and informative analysis. thanks.

        • J.D. says:

          Thanks, Leslie.

          I suspect that quite a few of the essays on Professor McAdams’s website would yield interesting results if we were to subject them to a close reading.

  6. Ronnie Wayne says:

    Bill, have you ever seen the picture of JFK when he received the news of Diem’s death, or read of his agony over it? Or never read about Ambassador Henry Cabot Lodge, appointed by JFK to Vietnam, defeated by him for his Senatorial seat, who refused to answer communications in the run up to Diem’s Assassination and thus assured it? This is what “they” did.
    “The dastardly SOB’s killed him before he could!”
    Sadly, you have this part right.

    • As Jackie Kennedy revealed to her daughter in a letter; JFK was going to fire Henry Cabot Lodge when they returned from the trip to Dallas.
      It was because Lodge had defied his instructions as per how to handle the situation with Diem.
      \\][//

    • Bill Clarke says:

      “Bill, have you ever seen the picture of JFK when he received the news of Diem’s death, or read of his agony over it?”

      Yes I have. Please note I’ve never claimed JFK had Diem killed or even wanted him killed. He did not. In fact I think JFK did about all he could to ensure the safety of Diem. The rotten Lodge not so much. I know the reasons for it but overthrowing Diem is not one of our best moments.

      “Or never read about Ambassador Henry Cabot Lodge, appointed by JFK to Vietnam, defeated by him for his Senatorial seat, who refused to answer communications in the run up to Diem’s Assassination and thus assured it?”

      JFK never should have put Lodge in that position. He did it for political reasons, the shortcomings of Lodge being well known at the time. They came back to bite JFK in the ass. Lodge pushed the envelope on insubordination in my thinking.

      This is what “they” did.
      “The dastardly SOB’s killed him before he could!”
      Sadly, you have this part right.

      My point being that this pie in the sky stuff is just that. It sounds great that Jack was going to destroy the CIA but we find that actually he did not. In fact he used the hell out of them.

      And I think 2 years would have been long enough to disband the CIA. The assassination had nothing to do with Jack not disbanding the CIA.

      • Tom S. says:

        My point being that this pie in the sky stuff is just that. It sounds great that Jack was going to destroy the CIA but we find that actually he did not. In fact he used the hell out of them.

        And I think 2 years would have been long enough to disband the CIA. The assassination had nothing to do with Jack not disbanding the CIA.

        Can you make a case that the O.S.S. was actually “disbanded”. I can’t earnestly say that anything more drastic happened
        than than that it was reconstituted. John Shaheen had been head of special projects. Here is Robert Gates responding to ]
        questions about Shaheen’s “right hand man,” Roy Furmark, shortly after Bill Casey’s sudden death.:

        https://www.loc.gov/law/find/nominations/gates/005_excerpt.pdf
        This is a 226 page, .pdf transcript –


        Shaheen and Reagan were born a couple of years apart in Tampico, IL, pop. 600 Shaheen’s best man was the employer
        of defector Robert E. Webster. Both Casey and Shaheen died suddenly and left Gates holding “the bag” (Roy Furman)>
        http://tomscully.com/node/10

        Consider these were very protected people, and it took a while for GW Bush to dig
        Robert Gates up, dust him off, and put him back, “on track”!.

        Roy Furmark:
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roy_Furmark

        Elroy McCaw was this man’s liason at the Pentagon during WWII.:

        Gen. Harold M. McClelland

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harold_M._McClelland
        ………..
        In 1951, a sharp increase in diplomatic tensions was seen by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) as the precursor to war. A greater volume of communications required a stronger system, and CIA Director Walter Bedell Smith hired McClelland as chief of CIA communications, a position known as “Assistant Director, Communications”, on September 10, 1951.[4] There, McClelland oversaw the technical development and implementation of a secure global communications system.[4] He served the CIA for 14 years until his death in Washington, D.C. in 1965.[19]

        Top Secret Talks Not Exactly Secret . – Google News
        https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1314&dat=19710604&id=ZR1OAAAAIBAJ&sjid=2ewDAAAAIBAJ&pg=6080,1110710&hl=en
        Jun 3, 1971 – The story of how a Seattle businessman inadvertently crashed a top … Salinger, describing the mistake as the worst security breach in his … In an interview, the author identified the businessman as Elroy Mccaw a wealthy Se …

        The fate of the company that paid for Robert E. Webster’s trip to Moscow Science Fair.:

        Rand Development And Chief Have A Great Fall .
        https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1499&dat=19681229&id=Y8AdAAAAIBAJ&sjid=XygEAAAAIBAJ&pg=7384,2778544&hl=en
        To get out of the box, he and Rand Development de vised a scheme to defraud … which ranked him third James Rand owned 83,700 shares and Elroy mccaw .

        ..

        • Bill Clarke says:

          “Can you make a case that the O.S.S. was actually “disbanded”.

          You mean Truman “officially” disbanded them but they continued to march? No, I can’t make a case either way.

          “I can’t earnestly say that anything more drastic happened than than that it was reconstituted.”

          Truman disbanded the OSS in September 1945 and didn’t create the CIA until the National Security Act of 1947. With that much time in between I’m not sure I would call it a strict reconstitution although I don’t doubt some credit can be given to reconstitution here.

          I found a reference that claims some segments of the OSS remained active in this interim. If so it would seem to lean more towards a reconstitution as you mention.
          ______________________________________________

          “Various departments of the OSS survived the agency’s dissolution, however, and less than two years later the Central Intelligence Agency was founded, a realization of Donovan’s hopes for a centralized peacetime intelligence agency.[8]

          “https://en.wikipedia.orgwiki/William_J._Donovan.

          {8} Anthony Cave Brown, Wild Bill Donovan: The Last Hero 0-8129-1021-4

          • ‘In the fall of 1945, the President vaguely wanted a new kind of centralized intelligence service, but his Cabinet departments and existing services knew fairly specifically what kinds of central intelligence they did not want. Between these two realities lay the gray area in which the CIG was founded and grew in 1946. Truman always took credit for assigning CIG the task of providing timely strategic warning and guarding against another Pearl Harbor. CIG acquired its second mission–the conduct of clandestine activities abroad–in large part through the foresight of Donald Stone and John J. McCloy. These two appointees ensured that trained OSS personnel stayed together as a unit ready to join the new peacetime intelligence service. Within months of its creation, CIG had become the nation’s primary agency for strategic warning and the management of clandestine activities abroad, and within two years the Group would bequeath both missions to its successor, the CIA.

            The relationship–and tension–between the two missions (strategic warning and clandestine activities) formed the central dynamic in the unfolding early history of CIA. Many officials thought the two should be handled ”centrally”, although not necessarily by a single agency. That they ultimately were combined under one organization (CIG and then CIA) was due largely to the efforts of McCloy and Magruder. Nevertheless, it is clear from the history of the SSU that high-level Truman administration officials acted with the tacit assent of the White House in preserving OSS’s most valuable components to become the nucleus of the nation’s foreign intelligence capability. The President’s actions do not deserve the charge of incompetence that has been leveled against them, but it does seem justified to conclude that Truman’s military advisers deserve most of the credit for the creation of a CIG that could collect as well as collate foreign intelligence.’ — Michael Warner, CIA historian

            https://www.cia.gov/library/center-for-the-study-of-intelligence/kent-csi/vol39no5/html/v39i5a13p.htm

          • Asst. Sec. War John McCloy was also pivotal during the Nuremberg Trials with the shadow of the Gehlen Org. in play, and having aided in the transition of the OSS to what we know today as the CIA, left the military for the private sector where he became essentially a career board member of industrial giants Westinghouse, American Metal Climax, AT&T, United Fruit among others. while building a career within the Rockefeller empire and ending up Chairman of Chase, President of the World Bank, attorney to the “Seven Sisters”, and President of the Ford Foundation. In whose service did he envision this new intelligence agency?

          • As students of the assassination know John McCloy was second only to Allen Dulles (who had assumed the head of the agency McCloy constructed out of remnants of the OSS) in influence over the members of the Warren Commission, leaving Earl Warren as the puppet figurehead he was meant to be.

          • Ronnie Wayne says:

            So Leslie, can we infer that McCloy was more influential in the creation of the CIA yhan Dulles?

          • Ronnie, sorry I missed this.

            I don’t see Dulles’ name mentioned in that ‘official’ version, and there were 2/3 DCI’s before him if you count the interim agency. It’s likely he was consulted as former OSS, and even more likely McCloy was in the shadows when he was named director. McCloy is almost an allegorical figure of the Industrial bookend of the MIC which seems to draw less and less attention while THE agency has been assigned the role of the greater villain, a fundamental error imv unless those industries threatened by a Kennedy dynasty are carefully factored in. How do we know some in the CIA were not reporting to them on some level, reliant on their untraceable funding? Consider David Talbot’s vignette related to Sierra Martinez, Union Tank Car and ‘multi-million-dollar investment in anti-Castro Cuban exile operations in Miami – money which was funneled from major U.S., corporations with interests in Latin America’. (thanks to Russ Tarby on this site for that synopsis.)

        • Photon says:

          Casey certainly didn’t die suddenly. Why say that he did? He was hospitalized long enough to acquire an alias, at least according to Bob Woodward.

      • Ronnie Wayne says:

        Two years was not enough with people like Angleton, Helms, Shackley, Harvey, Phillips, Joannides and Morales still in place. Not with Dulles still in the shadows directing his comrades. Note: two years is is from the Bay of Pigs in 1961, when JFK came to distrust the CIA after his inauguration that year because of that inherited CIA fiasco.

        • Bill Clarke says:

          Ronnie Wayne
          February 24, 2016 at 1:23 am

          Two years was not enough with people like Angleton, Helms, Shackley, Harvey, Phillips, Joannides and Morales still in place.

          Kennedy could have fired them all in the same afternoon.

        • Ronny, as Mr Clarke notes, “Kennedy could have fired them all in the same afternoon.” — And I would note, Kennedy would have died that very night.
          \\][//

  7. So soon and how convenient it is for our adversaries here to forget the Iran/Contra Scandal, and the underbelly of duplicity of Reagan and his fascist policies. Ollie North’s hyperactive paper shredding, proof of Contra-CIA endorsed drug running, Torture Manuals, etc, etc, etc.

    And it is also conveniently forgotten how the NY Times totally misrepresented the final Tower Commission report addendum on the drug running personally overseen by Oliver North.
    \\][//

  8. Bob Prudhomme says:

    Tom S.

    May we have the means to cut & paste articles too?

    • Tom S. says:

      Bob,
      You already have the means to paste text of articles. If you are actually asking about images, this site’s anti-spam
      software will not permit image link html code –

  9. Scott Fulmer says:

    The more apt comparison, or perhaps contrast, with regards to the current attention over Bernie’s comments on the CIA would be to the Bobby Kennedy Presidential campaign. More direct light – or darkness, depending on where you sit – can be drawn from the open window into the spectral realm of fluidity, or an anchored lack thereof. What sitting or past Presidents said about the CIA was brought about by a very different political context than a candidate’s relationship with a moving electorate.

  10. Jeff says:

    The video link below is a great example of the importance of this year’s presidential election and its connection to President Kennedy.

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