Tag Archive for James Angleton

Pre-order now: ‘The Ghost: The Secret Life of CIA Spymaster James Jesus Angleton’

James Angleton

James Angleton, chief of the CIA’s Counterintelligence Staff.

At the Future of Freedom Foundation’s recent conference on “The National Security State and JFK,” I previewed one of the best stories from my forthcoming biography of James Angleton: How Lee Harvey Oswald became enmeshed in the Angleton’s legendary “mole hunt” in which he pursued a KGB spy in the ranks of the CIA.

If Oswald was a “lone nut,” as cliché would later have it, he was that rare isolated sociopath of interest to the CIA’s Counterintelligence Staff.

The Ghost: The Secret Life of CIA Spymaster James Jesus Angleton: Jefferson Morley: Amazon.com: Books

Secret JFK document #2: James Angleton’s testimony

Angleton thoughtful

Counterintelligence chief James Angleton

On January 22, 1976. retired CIA counterintelligence chief James Angleton testified in secret session with the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Activities, otherwise known as the Church Committee.

Forty two years later, the 74 page transcript of Angleton’s testimony is still a state secret, according to the Mary Ferrell Foundation’s comprehensive listing of still-classified JFK material.

Angleton’s testimony, scheduled to be released in October of this year, could not be more important to JFK assassination scholarship.

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Pre-order now: The Ghost: The Secret Life of CIA Spymaster James Jesus Angleton

James Angleton testifies

James Angleton, spymaster

Be the first among your friends to pre- order this book and you will not be sorry. Read more

‘JFK Declassified:’ What the History Channel overlooks

Declassified documents reveal that Oswald met with the Cold War enemies of the United States, both Russia and Cuba, only eight weeks before JFK’s assassination.

This claim, made by the producers of new History Channel docu-series JFK Declassified: Tracking Oswald, is not new. The claim may just be promotional hype for the series which begins tonight and runs through May 30. But, from long experience with JFK documentaries, my fact checking antennae are tingling.

It is not too soon to say the History Channel’s claim is potentially misleading.

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History Channel, CIA officer to examine ‘The Declassified Oswald;” The Internet will be fact-checking

JFK DeclassifiedThe History Channel’s upcoming documentary series, “JFK Declassified: Tracking Oswald” sounds enticing. A videogenic and decorated former CIA operations officer Robert Baer revisits the secret intelligence dimensions of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

Baer is not the worst choice for a guide to the JFK story. He is an incisive commentator on CIA affairs, and no apologist. He rejects torture and expresses skepticism on drones. He comes across as a thinking man’s intelligence officer. (The fact that George Clooney played Baer in the movie Syriana gives him a whiff of Cool Liberal cologne.) Read more

JFK Facts Podcast: On Antonio Veciana’s memoir, ‘Trained To Kill’

This week Alan and I talk about the importance of Trained To Kill: The Inside Story of CIA Plots Against Castro, Kennedy, and Che, a new memoir written by former anti-Castro militant Antonio Veciana with Carlos Harrison.

Listen:

We also talked about:

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Angleton and the CIA’s illicit mail surveillance program

Although this account does not mention James Angleton, the CIA Counterintelligence Chief (1954-74) was the man who expanded and oversaw the opening of the mail of U.S. citizens for nearly 20 years. In 1977, the Justice Department decided not to indict him.

Source: The Justice Department refused to prosecute CIA for illegal surveillance

The Assassination & Mrs. Paine 

 

Here’s why: As the CIA’s James Angleton monitored the movements of the ex-defector Lee Oswald in the fall of 1963, Oswald came in contact with the Paines, a family familiar with the CIA milieu.

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James Angleton and the art of leak

Similarly, the late James Angleton, America’s most famous counterspy, slipped me the history of a ridiculously expensive recovery vessel called the Glomar Explorer and a few years later laughed that it was an effort to upstage a New York Times investigative reporter he knew was chasing the story.

Source: The leaks I received during Watergate taught me they’re worth the risk – The Washington Post

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JFK’s differences with the CIA were profound. Trump’s, not yet.

JFK at Dallas AirportFrom the fever swamp of InfoWars, Jerome Corsi reports that “JFK researchers” are saying that President Donald Trump is at risk for assassination because of his differences with the Central Intelligence Agency.

I have been a JFK researcher for 35 years, and Corsi has distorted what most of us think to serve a fear-mongering political agenda.

“JFK researchers: Trump at risk for assassination” is a lousy piece of journalism, less of a story than a conspiratorial meme but it is revealing about Trump and the CIA.

Corsi’s right about one thing: Trump faces an important JFK decision later this year.

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Returning to action: the JFK story in 2017

My vacation from the land of JFK is over. I haven’t written here in a couple of months and now I’m back. Please excuse my unauthorized absence. I’ve been busy.

I’m writing about the Trump administration for AlterNet, and that’s a yuge job.

I finished my next book, The Ghost: The Secret Life of CIA Spymaster James Jesus Angleton, and that was bigly too. (Look for this biographic thriller on Amazon/Powell’s and in bookstores in October.)

But I’d left some people high and dry. My friend Dwight said, Man, what’s up with the blog? Don’t stop now. So, with lots of JFK news coming, it is indeed time to start writing again.

You will be hearing from me on many things, including:

  • Judge John Tunheim’s March 16 appearance in Washington to talk about the JFK Records Act;
  • The latest from the National Archives on the JFK records in October 2017;
  • The implications of tensions between President Trump and the CIA for full JFK disclosure;
  • Why Natalie Portman was robbed at the Oscars.

I was talking with John Newman the other day–about Angleton, the JFK Records Act, and Cuba–and he said, “I truly think we are in new territory in terms of understanding the case.”

I think that’s right. The challenge of 2017 is to tell the new JFK story in a lucid dispassionate way.

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Spirit of Angleton hovers over an attack on Edward Snowden

From the New York Times Book Review:

The spirit of James Jesus Angleton, the C.I.A.’s mole-obsessed counterintelligence chief during the peak years of the Cold War and evidently a mentor to Epstein (he’s mentioned several times), hovers over these pages.

That’s reviewer Nicholas Lemman’s way of casting doubt on Edward Epstein’s lightly sourced (to put it mildly) indictment of the NSA whistle blower. In other words, Epstein’s case against Snowden as a spy today is as unsuccessful as Angleton’s hunt for a Soviet mole in the 1960s.

My biography of Angleton, The Ghost, will be published in the fall of 2017. It can be preordered now.

Source: Is Edward Snowden a Spy? A New Book Calls Him One. – The New York Times

‘Jim [Angleton] would prefer to wait out the Commission …’

The reason James Angleton’s still-secret testimony to the Church Committee matters in 2017 is found in this Warren Commission document.

“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.
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Literary (CIA) agents at work

In Literary Agents, Patrick Iber of the New Republic delves into the role of the CIA in the culture Cold War. He doesn’t specifically mention the role of Cord Meyer and James Angleton but they were probably the two CIA officials most responsible for CIA cultural funding between 1954 and 1967,

Iber captures what was most problematic about the CIA’s role, something I will touch on in my forthcoming Angleton biography.

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The Dulles ascendancy: the rise of a secret government 

Allen’s ascendency brought furtive characters, such as gun-toting William Harvey and cadaverous James Jesus Angelton, into a powerful global apparatus. Cold War ideology brooked no nationalist aspirations in any country wishing to control domestic politics and natural resources. A post-colonial era was emerging. But democratically elected nationalist leaders such as Mohammad Mossadegh in Iran and Jacobo Arbenz in Guatemala were conveniently portrayed as communists. In both countries, the CIA orchestrated coups ensuring protection for profitable corporate oil interests and the United Fruit Co. The agency contributed to the killing of Patrice Lumumba, the charismatic Congolese leader who only wanted self-government for his beleaguered people.

Source: The mid-20th-century rise of a secret government | Street Roots