Tag Archive for Jim Lesar

Anti-Castro militant says he saw CIA officer with Lee Harvey Oswald

David Phillips

David A. Phillips oversaw CIA anti-Castro psychological warfare operations in 1963.

Writing in OpEdNews in 2013, attorney Jim Lesar posted the latest development in the evolving story of the role of the CIA in the events leading up to President Kennedy’s assassination in Dallas 50 years ago.

Antonio Veciana, a retired anti-Castro fighter, has confirmed that he saw an undercover CIA officer named David Phillips in the company pro-Castro activist Lee Oswald two months before Oswald is said to have shot and killed President Kennedy in Dallas on November 22, 1963.

Veciana’s account calls attention to continuing CIA secrecy in the JFK story. Lesar is a veteran FOIA litigator who represents me in my lawsuit against the CIA, for the records of one of Phillips’s colleagues.

Where is this story going?

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Upholding the JFK Records Act

In 1992, the President John F. Kennedy Assassination Records Collection Act mandated that in 2017 all remaining JFK records and redactions be released. However, the National Archives has recently informed federal agencies that if they intend on maintaining secrecy over these records they should begin preparing appeals to the next president of the United States. We are working to ensure that the law is upheld.

Source: 2017 JFK — 2017 JFK

The JFK question for the 2016 election

Here’s a question for the presidential contenders of 2016: Will each candidate “declare, unequivocally, his or her intention to release the remaining JFK assassinations records in 2017.”

It is a basic test of the candidates’ commitment to open government and rule of law.

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Where to go to learn more about JFK and October 2017

Help ensure that our elected representatives will uphold and enforce the terms of the President John F. Kennedy Assassination Records Collection Act.

Source: ASSASSINATION ARCHIVES AND RESEARCH CENTER

The implications of latest Morley v. CIA ruling

The latest Morley decision greatly simplifies the test for determining whether a FOIA plaintiff is entitled to receive attorney fees.

Source: MEMORANDUM ON MORLEY CASE OPINION BY COURT OF APPEALS

Morley 3, CIA 0

A federal appellate court has again rejected the arguments of the Central Intelligence Agency in a long-running lawsuit over ancient but still-sensitive CIA files related to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

Jim Lesar

James Lesar, veteran FOIA litigator, prevailed over the CIA attorneys for a third time.

On Thursday, a three-judge panel in Washington D.C. unanimously denied the CIA’s claim that there is no “public benefit” to the disclosure of long-suppressed records of a deceased CIA officer involved in the events that led to the death of the liberal president on November 22, 1963.

“Where that subject is the Kennedy assassination, an event with few rivals in national trauma and in the array of passionately held conflicting explanationsshowing potential public value is relatively easy,” wrote Senior Circuit Judge Stephen Williams.

The records were forced into public view by a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit that I brought against the CIA in 2003. The records revealed for the first time that the officer received a Career Intelligence Medal in 1981, two years after stonewalling congressional investigators about what he knew of contacts in 1963 between accused assassin Lee Oswald and CIA-funded anti-Castro exiles in New Orleans.

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CIA and Nixon led ‘aggressive’ Cuba policy, according to FBI memo

Not long after the first anniversary of Fidel Castro coming to power,  Vice President Richard Nixon was “becoming very active and aggressive” about US. policy toward Cuba with the help of the CIA.

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Federal judges to hear arguments about CIA JFK files on November 6

Barrett Prettyman Courthouse

Washington DC courthouse where federal judges will hear oral arguments about the CIA’s JFK records.

Oral arguments in my long-running lawsuit for certain CIA records related to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy will be heard in federal court in Washington on Friday, November 6.

At issue: whether the records forced into the public record by Morley v. CIA over CIA objections have had “public benefit.”

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The latest legal brief in Morley v. CIA

Joannides medal

Retired CIA officer George Joannides (left) received the Career Intelligence Medal in 1981, two years after misleading House investigators about what he knew about Lee Oswald. (Photo credit: CIA)

Here’s the latest legal brief that I have filed in my Freedom of Information Act lawsuit seeking long secret CIA records relevant to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

The brief, written by my attorney Jim Lesar, challenges the CIA’s contention that the disclosures forced by Morley v. CIA have no “public benefit.” Understandably worried about the agency’s credibility on the JFK story, the CIA’s lawyers are essentially arguing that the lawsuit is frivolous.

The CIA’s problem is that more than 30 news organizations worldwide disagree. New sites ranging  from New York Times to the Dallas Morning News to the Huffington Post to the UK’s Daily Mail covered the lawsuit and the resulting disclosures.

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The JFK question for 2016 candidates

Here’s a question for the presidential contenders of 2016:

Will you declare “unequivocally” your intention to release the remaining JFK assassinations records in 2017?

It is a basic test of the candidates’ commitment to open government and rule of law.

Read more

Morley v. CIA: highlights from the decision

Highlights from the opinion of Judge Stephen Williams concerning the FOIA lawsuit for JFK assassination, Morley v. CIA. 

The decision was affirmed by Judges Douglas Ginsburg and Sri Srinvasan.

I’m the plaintiff and I have added my comments:

The Court:

Morley contends that some of the documents turned over—a couple of travel records and a photograph and citation relating to a career medal once received by Joannides—shed some light on President Kennedy’s assassination, but the value of these documents is at best unclear.

Morley:  If the CIA wants to clear up the story of George Joannides’ secret operations in 1963, it is free to do so at any time. I hope they will do so before October 25, 2017 when the JFK Records Act mandates the release of the agency’s still-secret JFK assassination-related records.

The Court:

Morley’s request had potential public value. He has proffered—and the CIA has not disputed—that Joannides served as the CIA case officer for a Cuban group, the DRE, with whose officers Oswald was in contact prior to the assassination.

Morley: No one is much surprised that the CIA sees no “public benefit” in talking publicly about certain covert operations in late 1963. That’s politically understandable in Langley. It is not legally acceptable in the context of JFK, says the court.

Where that subject is the Kennedy assassinationan event with few rivals in national trauma and in the array of passionately held conflicting explanationsshowing potential public value is relatively easy.

Morley: This is not a controversial proposition. Full JFK disclosure has public value. The CIA disagrees but the law and Judge Williams and common sense say otherwise.

 

 

CIA admits undercover officer lived in New Orleans

George Joannides, chief of CIA covert operations in Miami in 1963, also had a residence in New Orleans, according to the CIA.

In a court motion filed last week, the CIA acknowledged for the first time that deceased CIA officer George Joannides lived in New Orleans while handling contacts with an anti-Castro student organization whose members had a series of encounters with accused presidential assassin Lee Oswald in August 1963.

The unexpected admission came in arguments before a federal court judge about whether the CIA is obliged to pay $295,000 in legal fees incurred during my Freedom of Information Act lawsuit concerning certain 50-year-old JFK assassination records.

In a previous court filing, my attorney Jim Lesar argued that two documents released over CIA objections in 2008 were significant because they showed that Joannides’s espionage assignment took him to New Orleans where Oswald lived.

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What the Warren Commission didn’t know

The Assassination Archive and Research Center will hold a conference on the 50th anniversary of the report of the Warren Commission in Washington next week — and it is going to be great.

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Fifty one years later, federal judge upholds the CIA’s right to keep JFK secrets

Ten years ago I filed a lawsuit seeking the records of a deceased CIA officer involved in the events leading up to the assassination of President Kennedy and its confusing investigatory aftermath. Read more

Support the JFK Facts lawsuit against the CIA

I filed suit for the records of George Joannides ten years ago, and the case is still not over. The legal bills of my attorney Jim Lesar now run to more that $125,000, and the CIA refuses to pay, even though the Court of Appeals ruled in our favor.

No one is doing this kind of work except for JFK Facts. We need your help to continue.

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