“For some time I have been disturbed by the way the CIA has been diverted from its original assignment,” wrote former president Harry Truman in the Washington Post on December 22, 1963. It was exactly one month after the assassination of President Kennedy.
“It has become an operational and at times a policy-making arm of the Government. This has led to trouble and may have compounded our difficulties in several explosive areas,” Truman wrote.
The former president never explicitly linked JFK’s death to the clandestine service, but the timing and venue of his piece was suggestive.
James Angleton, chief of the CIA’s Counterintelligence Staff.
Legendary CIA counterspy James Angleton was interviewed by federal investigators in 1973 about a reported meeting with Watergate burglar Howard Hunt, according to a declassified CIA history made public this week.
Angleton responded by dissembling about his relationship with Hunt and threatening legal action against the source of the story.
The report, first obtained by Judicial Watch, sheds new light on the agency’s role in the burglary that brought down President Richard Nixon in 1974 and changed the course of American politics.
James Jesus Angleton, chief of the agency’s Counterintelligence Staff, reached the peak of his powers during the Nixon’s presidency. But his backstage role in the Watergate affair has gone largely unnoticed.
Donald Trump’s comments about the 2nd Amendment and Hillary Clinton have unleashed the anxiety of assassination that always–always–courses beneath the surface of American political culture. This anxiety is the enduring result of the searing trauma of November 22, 1963 on generations of Americans. Before there was 9/11 there was 11//22.
Senior CIA officials have for years intentionally deceived parts of the agency workforce by transmitting internal memos that contain false information about operations and sources overseas, according to current and former U.S. officials who said the practice is known by the term “eyewash.”
Comes the sad news that Mary La Fontaine has died. I first met Mary and her husband Ray in 1993 after reading a maunscript version of their book Oswald Talked. I was impressed with their writing for many reasons: its witty tone, its use of original sources,and its granular depiction of a subject oddly ignored by JFK researchers: Cuban exiles in Dallas.
It was the LaFontaines who highlighted me to the role of the Cuban Student Directorate (DRE) in the JFK story, a hunch that was amply confirmed by my subsequent reporting. Without the LaFontaines, I might never have discovered the curious case of George Joannides.
Lee Harvey Oswald was linked to the Mannlicher-Carcano rifle alleged to have been used to shoot President Kennedy by the hair and fiber analysis of FBI expert Paul Stombaugh. The Warren Commission’s final report drew conclusions from Stombaugh’s testimony that buttressed assertions about Oswald’s guilt, particularly the association between hair and fiber evidence allegedly tying Oswald to the rifle.
The Commission considered Stombaugh’s testimony of “probative value,” the report stated.
But a devastating recent study by the Justice Department and the FBI shows that close analysis of cases involving hair and fiber testing raises grave concerns about the role of similar scientific testimony by law enforcement experts in criminal convictions.
This was the moment President John F. Kennedy was angling for 52 years ago: reconciliation between the United States and Cuba.
President Obama met yesterday with Cuban president Raul Castro, the first face to face meeting of the country’s leaders since the mid-20th century. Obama said “Cuba is not a threat to the United States.” His appearance was condemned by Obama’s Republican critics just as JFK’s Cuba policy was condemned by his opponents.
I was hired as a junior editor at the Washington Post in September 1992, one year after Ben Bradlee retired. The man still prowled the newsroom, and, as one one attendee (I won’t say mourner) at his R-rated funeral service in Washington yesterday said, “As an actor, he was straight out of Central Casting. He was obvious. But he had cast himself in a pretty good role.”
David Talbot interviewed the late great editor Ben Bradlee for his book Brothers: The Hidden History of the Kennedy Years. He asked him a question many people have wondered over the years: Why didn’t he, of all people, investigation the murder of his pal Jack Kennedy?
The Irish Examiner‘s coverage of the 50th anniversary of the Warren Commission report was more comprehensive than the Washington Post‘s and better informed than the Boston Globe’s and more penetrating than Time magazine’s. It seems for the American journalistic profession, the noteworthy fact that a majority of Americans still reject the Commission’s obsolete conclusions is no longer worthy of much reflection.