James Angleton, chief of the CIA’s Counterintelligence Staff.
Yes. It was James Angleton’s idea.
In May 1963, deputy director Richard Helms asked Angleton, the legendary chief of the agency’s Counterintelligence Staff, to assess the problem of Cuba for the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Angleton wrote a 16-page working paper, “Cuban Control and Action Capabilities” that was so sensitive it would remain classified for the next 35 years.
Angleton’s conclusions were stark. Castro’s minions were marching into Latin America aided and abetted by their masters in Moscow, he said.
“In both internal and external activities the guiding hand of the Soviet Bloc, particularly the USSR, Czechoslovakia, and Communist China was evident to varying degrees,” Angleton wrote. “Many aspects of the Cuban [security] programs could not have been carried out without external support in terms of funds, experience and expert training.”
“Conspiracy theories,” writes author Annie Jacobsen in a New York Times forum, are “the stories we tell ourselves to make sense of how we live.” A JFK conspiracy theory (or anti-conspiracy theory) is a story we tell ourselves in order to make sense of what happened on November 22, 1963.
Where the accused assassin was laid to rest.
The global coverage of the sad story of Lee Harvey Oswald’s brother suing Baumgardner funeral home for his brother’s coffin demonstrates the enduring public interest in the smallest details of the JFK story.
While custodians of the conventional wisdom in the U.S. media turn up their noses at such fare, the UK’s Daily Mail uses the story to float the notion that Oswald was “in fact a covert U.S. intelligence agent,” a proposition for which there is a good deal of circumstantial evidence.
A friend forwards this CSPAN interview in which retired Washington Post editor Ben Bradlee talks about finding the diary of his sister-in-law Mary Meyer, the mistress of President Kennedy, and how CIA Counterintelligence Chief James Angleton took possession of the diary
Mary Meyer, former JFK mistress, was murdered in Washington DC in October 1964.
British historian John Simkin adds new detail to the story of the diary of JFK’s mistress Mary Meyer.
British historian John Simkin adds important detail to the story of Ben Bradlee and CIA Counterintelligence Chief James Angleton after the assassination of President Kennedy.
I find Simkin to be a credible and knowledgeable writer. If he has made any mistakes, please let me know via email.
In response to Ben Bradlee’s thoughts on JFK’s assassination, a friend asks, “Do you think Bradlee feared tangling with Angleton? Angleton was supposedly livid because Bradlee spread the story that Angleton had lock picked the studio of Mary Meyer [JFK’s mistress, slain in October 1964]?”
John Simkin breaks down the mysteries of a key JFK story: Yuri Nosenko and the Warren Report.
Howard Willens, former staff attorney on the Warren Commission, remains one of its most vigorous public defenders 50 years later. As I reported yesterday, he agreed to answer questions from JFK Facts via email. Because all of the questions were submitted at once, there were no follow up questions. In any case, my intent was not to conduct a hostile interrogation but to elicit his thoughts and hopefully start a dialogue. (I found his journal from 1964, which he has posted on his website, to be a valuable document for understanding the limitations of the Commission’s approach to its investigation.)
Now let’s hear from him. Read more
“Jim would prefer to wait out the Commission on the matter covered by paragraph 2…”
— CIA’s Raymond Rocca, writing to Richard Helms regarding counterintelligence chief James Angleton’s desire to stonewall the Warren Commission on certain CIA materials passed to the Secret Service.
The best-read JFK Facts stories in the month of June were: Read more
Howard Willens, Warren Commission defender.
Howard Willens, a former Warren Commission staffer, acknowledged in a an email interview with JFK Facts that deputy CIA director Richard Helms was “not truthful” with the Commission and there is “no doubt” that counterintelligence chief James Angleton did not cooperate with the inquiry into JFK’s assassination.
While vigorously defending the Commission’s conclusions, Willens admitted he was naive about the CIA. Asked about a passage in his journal from March 1964 in which he wrote that senior CIA officials “did not have an axe to grind” in the commission’s investigation, Willens acknowledged “my comments about the CIA were naive to say the least.”
A faithful reader writes with questions about my post on the UNLV conference celebrating New Orleans DA Jim Garrison for his efforts to prosecute a JFK assassination conspiracy
The reader says he is “not aware of evidence that the [CIA’s] Counterintelligence staff was ‘secretly trying to subvert his investigation,'” as I wrote in my post.
While the story of Sven Christensen, the senior U.S. Air Force official who saw November 22 as ‘a military coup” remained popular, two stories about CIA Counterintelligence Staff and JFK’s assassination drew strong reader interest as well.