Is David Talbot right that the CIA killed JFK ?

In Salon, David Talbot writes that JFK was assassinated, 52 years ago today, at the behest of a clique of CIA officers led by a highly-praised operator named Bill Harvey.

Is Talbot right?

Possibly. Talbot is a credible author. Harvey is a plausible suspect.

It’s also possible that Talbot is wrong. The question cannot be answered in 2015 because of CIA obfuscation.

The CIA retains a 123-page file on Harvey’s assassination-related activities that has never been seen by bloggers, reporters, scholars, or Congress.

When the CIA’s secret Bill Harvey file is made public, Talbot’s claim will be clarified.

It is pathetic and outrageous that such material remains hidden, but that’s reality.

What you can do is this: email the CIA Public Affairs Office and ask them for the secret Bill Harvey file. Click here.

Let me know what they say.

94 thoughts on “Is David Talbot right that the CIA killed JFK ?”

  1. In the controversy regarding what is on the Mexico City/Oswald tapes, I think everyone has forgot to consider the probability that the CIA closely monitored Oswald after his trip, and that may well be more important. I suspect the CIA knew Oswald was going to try to kill Kennedy, and stood back to let him try, planning to pick him up right away if he succeeded. In addition the CIA was frantic to cover up their knowledge of Oswald and their own assassination attempts on Castro et al. And since castro is still alive, they still don’t want to reveal everything.

    1. “I suspect the CIA knew Oswald was going to try to kill Kennedy, and stood back to let him try, planning to pick him up right away if he succeeded.”~Mary. McNamara

      There is an analogy to this in the controversies surrounding the events of 9/11. “LIHOP” meaning “let it happen on purpose” or “MIHOP” meaning “make it happen on purpose”.

      In my research into both incidents, the LIHOP version falls to the wayside as a ‘Limited Modified Hangout’. The actual evidence shows that the perpetrators in both incidents are the State itself, or if you will, an “inside job”.

  2. Some CIA supporters (Photon for example, who posts here). Accept there was a cover-up by the CIA for benign reasons, but a cover-up none the less. It is a crime of National proportions to cover-up the story behind the assassinatin of a Democratic leader, and its also un-democratic. It isn’t murder.

    If the CIA covered up the assassination then they may have done this to cover up their own murder. Commentators who once accused solely the Mafia, the Cubans and the Russians have fallen away. Nearly every researcher/ commentator and interested bystander now list the CIA as having a potential link to the murder.

  3. No less a person than Lyndon Johnson, on 12-31-63, indicted U.S. intelligence (call it the CIA if you will) in the JFK assassination.

    Madeleine Duncan Brown was a mistress of Lyndon Johnson for 21 years and had a son with him named Steven Mark Brown in 1950. Madeleine mixed with the Texas elite and had many trysts with Lyndon Johnson over the years , including one at the Driskill Hotel in Austin, TX, on New Year’s Eve 12/31/63.
    Late in the evening of 12/31/63, just 6 weeks after the JFK assassination, Madeleine asked Lyndon Johnson:
    “Lyndon, you know that a lot of people believe you had something to do with President Kennedy’s assassination.”
    He shot up out of bed and began pacing and waving his arms screaming like a madman. I was scared!
    “That’s bullshit, Madeleine Brown!” he yelled. “Don’t tell me you believe that crap!”
    “Of course not.” I answered meekly, trying to cool his temper.
    “It was Texas oil and those f__king renegade intelligence bastards in Washington.” [said Lyndon Johnson, the new president.] [Texas in the Morning, p. 189] [LBJ told this to Madeleine in the late night of 12/31/63 in the Driskill Hotel, Austin, TX in room #434 which is now known as the Governor’s Suite. LBJ kept this room on retainer for business and as a place to tryst with his mistresses. LBJ and Madeleine spent New Year’s Eve ‘63 together here.

    (Another separate Room is #254 -today it is known as the “Blue Room” or “LBJ Suite” or the “Presidential room” and rents for $600-1,000/night as a Presidential suite at the Driskill; located on the Mezzanine Level.)

  4. John Newman, in his book, ” JFK and Vietnam” , shows the direct connection between the murder of JFK and the escalation of the war in Vietnam.

  5. Looking at all the evidence, operatives at JMWAVE always seemed to most plausible to me. I could still imagine someone bringing in Bill Harvey. The rest — Angleton, Helms, Dulles – likely were in the know for damage control but had plausible deniability. Not sure if operatives would want to surprise those guys.

    Again, for me, the circumstantial evidence is at least as strong for this scenario as it is for the case against Oswald.

    1. I’m no Scott, Fonzi or even a DiEugenio but it sounds sensible to me. It’s logical that people like Shackley, Phillips, Morales and others for example could have conceived, implemented and executed the “Big Event” with their experience in assassinations and known hatred of JFK after the Bay of Pigs . Considering his documented relationship with Roselli regarding the Castro assassination attempts Harvey likely was right in the middle of it in spite of or because of his Rhome posting at the time of the Execution (a Corsican assassin? (One was expelled from Dallas/the US on 11/22/63). I still wonder what he and Roselli discussed on their fishing trip off the coast of Florida in April 1963.
      However, I can’t believe they would have proceeded without the permission and support of superiors in the company, who would have of course maintained plausible deniability.

  6. Couldn’t the murder have been carried out by operatives in JMWAVE without the explicit approval of higher ups in CIA? The suspected sheep dipping of Oswald and efforts to link the killing to Castro could possibly kill two birds with one stone for the plotters. Revenge against a hated enemy and prodding the American public to demand regime change in Cuba.

    This was indeed the first conspiracy theory to be floated by CIA type operators right after the killing. Many prominent American politicians, including LBJ, seem to imply that the U.S. was being pushed toward war because of this event.

    Once the plotters lost control of the narrative, it was in everyone’s best interest to push the LHO sole shooter case. To avoid war with the Soviet Union, supress knowledge of how the Administration had lost control of its agents and assets engaged in the fight against Castro, and cover up the total failure of agencies (S.S, FBI, et cetera) tasked to protect the President.

    I think this is more plausible than Allen Dulles sitting in the den of his Georgetown townhouse directing the course of the assasination.

    1. I don’t think anyone would have engaged in such a plot, no matter how much they hated Kennedy, unless they felt assured that they would not be identified and prosecuted. Someone like Dulles may not have needed to micromanage the conspiracy, but he would have been necessary to ensure that the plotters would not be exposed after the fact.

      That’s why Mr. Talbot’s thesis is so strong. Dulles fits that role better than any other comparable figure.

    2. “Couldn’t the murder have been carried out by operatives in JMWAVE without the explicit approval of higher ups in CIA?”

      Yes, I certainly think so. And then Dulles would have been someone called in to spray perfume on the dungheap, i.e., convince everyone that this was just the Lone Act Of A Psycho Loner Acting Entirely Alone. And making sure said Psycho Loner’s ties to the National Security State were covered up.

      As time goes on, I find myself most interested in just who Oswald was, what he was really doing, and who was ordering him to do what he did. This looks like some too clever by half spymaster’s double-triple-quadruple cross gone horribly wrong, and Dulles was, at the very least, recruited to clean up a mess he’d been at least partly responsible for creating.

      As to whether he’d been responsible for the assassination, I’m an agnostic, but I don’t think he was incapable of such a thing. Both he and his brother were dreadful human beings.

  7. Ira Jesse Hemingway

    January 31 1962 Presidential news conference #22 President John F Kennedy drops the dime on the CIA in regards to the material stockpiling that the CIA had control over the material.
    Lots of Love

    1. Ira Jesse Hemingway

      Funny how the number 22 comes into play in the future for President John F Kennedy.
      Kind of like a CIA signature.
      Lots of Love

    2. Commodity Credit Corporation-the “CCC” that he mentioned, NOT the C.I.A.
      The CIA had nothing to do with the stockpile.

      1. Ira Jesse Hemingway

        JFK said they started the initial investigation “last spring” April 1961 what happened in the spring of 1961?
        So what really big F-up happened in the “spring of 1961” the Operation was headed by the CIA that made President John F Kennedy look foolish? Come on I know you can Google the answer.
        This Stockpile investigation was President John F Kennedy creation and His directed blow back for the “spring of 1961 armature hour operation” created by the newly formed cadre of neocons .

  8. Responding to Photon’s comment, “Actually a physician who did not actually examine him, but was close enough to observe his abnormality.”

    Name, please? Afraid to say it?

    John Lattimer. Close enough? How is that? Did he see it from his front porch in New Jersey?

      1. This is ridiculous.

        Please give an exact citation, including the name of the physician and the name of the researcher. If you can’t do this, you’ve given us no reason to take this claim seriously.

      2. ‘A physician at the autopsy made remarks about it to a well known researcher’. — photon

        This is getting comical. Do I hear ‘hear-say of hear-say’ in this assertion? I’ll bet a judge would leap from the bench and throttle a prosecutor for presenting such gibberish. Those here should be incensed that you play this card when A) you persistently appeal to authority – what authority does the researcher have? and B) any witness that did not directly administer to President Kennedy is discounted as superfluous to the investigation – if said ‘physician’ treated the President, name him.

        Where is the peer review paper on Kennedy’s neck anomaly, photon? I hope you’re not allowed to get by with this.

        1. The source later became the head of one of the most prestigious medical institutions in the world.
          Multiple sources including our esteemed Dr. Aguilar have referenced him, but not on this topic.
          Now, that shouldn’t be hard to research

          1. I’m not interested in doing research on your behalf, particularly considering your persistent rudeness and constant implications that everyone who differs from your pro-Warren, pro-CIA, anti-Kennedy perspective is dishonest. Since you’ve failed to provide a citation after several requests, I’ll assume your claim is baseless and not waste another minute of my life on it.

          2. Or you could launch your own site called “twenty” or “what’s my” and take this silliness with you. If you’re frightened to name names, simply say so. I posit you have painted yourself into a corner and you have no idea how to tip toe out of it without leaving some messy footprints.

  9. Arnaldo M. Fernandez

    “My final take on the assassination is there was a conspiracy, likely including American intelligence officers,” said David A. Phillips. His point of view is a perfect match with Simpich´s findings: CIA officers “ran a piggy-backed operation on top of an anti-Fair Play for Cuba Committee operation run by CIA officer John Tilton and FBI agent Lambert Anderson, outwitted both Angleton and Goodpasture, brought down the President, and got away with it.” The primary suspects: David Sanchez Morales, Bill Harvey, and Phillips himself.

  10. After reading “Lee Harvey Oswald and the CIA” by John Newman, I think it was shown by that author that LHO was a CIA Asset. LHO could reveal his CIA contacts in a trial and that is why he was murdered before any trial could take place.

      1. Gerry Simone,

        Great post! I had read this a while ago and simply forgot about it until reading this again!

        “What Mrs. Treon recorded for history on her LD slip is that Lee Oswald requested to call a “John Hurt” in Raleigh, North Carolina. But what would become important is the fact that the John Hurt who had the first phone number on the slip was a former Special Agent in U.S. Army Counterintelligence. In short, Oswald attempted to place a call from the Dallas jail to a member of the American Intelligence community on Saturday evening, November 23, 1963, but was mysteriously prevented from completing the call.”~Dr. Grover B. Proctor, Jr.

  11. I have not read David Talbot’s new book on Allen Dulles yet. However, from what I have already read on the assassination of JFK, I would say that I don’t believe it is possible to be definite in regards to whether the CIA was involved or not.

    The current balance of evidence is just enough to maintain the official version of events imo. Having said that I believe that it is very probable that JFK was murdered as a result of a plot/conspiracy involving CIA officers/operatives, acting in conjunction with others individuals in the MIC. If this scenario turns out to be correct, then it was probably carried out by the Mafia, anti-Castro Cubans or some other foreign criminal elements (the latter two would increase the distance from the crime of American interests).

    In terms of the CIA, I think Bill Harvey, David Morales, David Phillips, possibly Howard Hunt, and others are credible suspects. I am not sure about the leadership of the CIA: Dulles (de facto), Helms or Angleton. I presume some, or all three of them would have probably had to have given a covert operation with such far reaching implications their personal approval (I know Dulles was fired in 1961, but I think he was still very influential in CIA circles by November 1963). The other alternatives are that they did not know of, or approve a plot, and were then blackmailed into saving their agencies’ reputation, or the CIA was not involved at all. On the available evidence, I am undecided on what the leading figures in the CIA’s potential role might have been.

    1. Or perhaps to make a buck before the 2017 record release makes obsolete this line of Conspiracy author revenue generation. I see now that Mr. Talbot is complaining that the “media” and specifically the CIA-allied New York Times are sabotaging efforts to promote his book. It appears that despite the hype among the true believers there is little interest in this book outside of Conspiracy and “CIA is evil” circles, ie. it ain’t movin’ .
      Any book about the assassination that claims that the Single Bullet narrative is about the head shot should be tossed in the wastebasket -to make such a fundamental error about such a central topic should call into question Mr. Talbot’s accuracy about other claims in the book. Earlier on this site I posted other examples of questionable claims. Mr. Talbot’s hypothesis can be boiled down to Dulles hated Kennedy because he fired him, so Dulles had him killed. And by the way, the CIA engaged in some dirty tricks ( at the direction of multiple administrations) so they killed JFK.
      He would have been better off sticking with the Mafia angle as he did in the quoted article . Mob books tend to have a broader audience .

      1. Proton for the first time ever I agree with you, but why don’t you comment on my Pash essay. No comment a vote of approval?

      2. Nothing in Mr. Talbot’s book — which is extensively documented and should not be judged by a single error — is a tenth as unfounded as your bizarre contention that JFK had an “abnormal neck,” a condition that went unremarked upon by his doctors, the men who performed his autopsy, and everyone else who knew him.

          1. Photon writes that JFK’s “abnormal neck” was “remarked by one of the doctors who examined him.”

            Pure codswollop. Note that “Photon” doesnt’ cite a source or give a checkable quote. Why? He has none.

            An assertion made without evidence may be dismissed without evidence. Much of what “Photon” writes may be so dismissed.

          2. I believe I know why Photon is reluctant to tell us where he got his “information.” It probably comes from none other than John Lattimer.

            And Photon used the same photo that Lattimer used to back up his “scientific” assessment that JFK’s neck was “abnormal” and, as Lattimer put it,

            “It is easy to see that a bullet entering near the base of the neck at the back could pass downward at an angle of twenty degrees and exit just below his Adam’s apple.” (Page 203 from Lattimer’s book, “Kennedy and Lincoln.”)

            It is also easy to see why neither Photon nor Lattimer (Photon’s mentor) would ever suggest we look at a true profile of Kennedy, one that would make comparison easy, one that would show whether he had the Myers Hump, one that would show whether a downward bullet path trajectory was possible. Plenty of true profile photos of JFK are available — and they contradict this bit of Photon’s unoriginal disinformation.

            Here is a link to the Autopsy Report. You will find no such abnormality described.

          3. Actually, actually do we detect some backtracking here?

            Anyone who has followed this site closely can find numerous occasions when you have ridiculed the observations of those who saw Kennedy’s wounds but did not treat him, making your last argument all the more obnoxious.

            November 29, 2015 at 12:20 am
            It was remarked by one of the doctors who examined him. You are in error.

            November 29, 2015 at 11:42 am
            Actually a physician who did not actually examine him, but was close enough to observe his abnormality.

  12. Whilst Harvey is certainly a person of interest I don’t think we can say definitively exactly who was involved. A lot of evidence points to people in counter intelligence and the Special Affairs Staff, the senior figures sacked by Kennedy in 1962 and associated members of the Georgetown set, but exactly what knowledge and roles each had, if any, is hard to be certain of.
    The process of sheep dipping Oswald seems to me to require someone with a wider role in the CIA than Harvey had by 1963. Indeed I wonder if the anti-Castro Cubans were used in this, given the weakness of the drive to set off a war with Cuba after the assassination and it was more about general regime change given the impression various people had around Kennedy’s overall foreign policy, but that again is speculation.
    Anyway just a thought

    1. I would suggest that Oswald was being used by the intelligence agencies for *other* purposes until a few months before the assassination. A couple masterminds in the know co-opted that situation for the purposes of killing JFK, thus effectively blackmailing everyone else into silence to this day.

      1. That’s pretty much the way I see it too. I think there was a group trying to get him into Cuba and that his impersonation in Mexico was part of that plan. If the Soviets and Cubans recognized him as an impostor then it would mean that the real Oswald wasn’t an agent or why impersonate him. That would be helpful in having the Cubans trust the real Oswald. The Walker shooting was probably legend building too. It made him appear more authentic. An agent for The Company wouldn’t try to kill a general. I think the people working this group wanted to get Oswald into Cuba to kill Castro or maybe just spy.
        I think that in the weeks before the assasination he was approached by another group, or the representative of another group. This group planned an Operation Northwoods type of event. There would be a false assassination attempt. Oswald would be sought as a conspirator. The trail would lead to Mexico into Cuba. The US would demand his return which would not be possible because he wouldn’t be there. The US would invade. Oswald likely believed he would have a new identity and lots of money in South Africa, Rhodesia, or some such place.
        A third group either hijacked the plan and killed JFK and arranged to have Oswald killed or that was the plan all along before the start of the second group but the second one group was unaware of what was really to occur.
        I think this is the way it was operationalized. Anyone one involved in the first or second group would want to hide involvement of that group with Oswald and also hide that they had been snookered. The cover up would start immediately.

        1. And yet this supersecret agent who was so valuable couldn’t even support his family. When in the history of spycraft has an asset been not supported financially?
          ” The Company wouldn’t try to kill a general.” But they are willing to kill a President, a sitting governor and possibly their wives? Not rational.
          Three groups involved? You are trying to invent a scenario not just contradicted by the facts, but by common logic. Why would any plot as complex as this have Oswald running around Dallas unaccompanied for thirty minutes after the assassination ?

          1. Photon, can I please ask you to clarify your stance on the CIA’s culpability. You have concurred with the view that there was a cover up including the CIA. You belive this was benign. How are you able to claim there is no circumstantial evidence linking the CIA to the assassination? You see the cover-up as benign, but if you are looking for people culpable in the assasination then those culpable for cover-up are prima facie suspects in the assasination.

          2. Photon,
            You haven’t explained what was abnormal about JFK’s neck! What are you yabbering about here; complaining that someone else is “trying to invent a scenario not just contradicted by the facts, but by common logic”?

            Your opinions have no bearing whatsoever here, as you have shown yourself to be consistently disingenuous, and insincere in your commentary.

          3. Hi Photon,
            1) Can you provide some type of proof that covert operatives are always living an undercover life as being well to do ? I think a good agent or covert operative plays their role and does it well and if that means barely making ends meet they do that. For the most part I think they are dedicated professionals who do what it takes to get the job done or the mission accomplished. Surely
            not every covert operative lives a James Bond lifestyle.
            I think you are doing a disservice to the many fine men
            and women who work in inteligence if you think that
            there aren’t those among them who would sacrifice
            greatly to do their job.

            2) Surely you understand the concept I was trying to
            express when I wrote that The Company wouldn’t kill a
            general. In case not allow me to clarify. The Company
            wanted the Soviets and Cubans to think that Oswald was
            an authentic leftist and the Walker attempt was part of
            building that legend.

            3) I didn’t say that The Company killed JFK. They may
            have been used and an intelligence operation may have
            been hijacked by conspirators in or outside The
            Company. I certainly don’t think someone like Dulles,
            Meyer, McCone or anyone at that level ordered or
            oversaw the whole operation.

            4) Why would a complex plot allow Oswald to be on the loose for a half an hour? It was actually more than a half an hour. Perhaps the plan went awry. Maybe the plan was to have him killed before he got to the theater. Maybe not. Maybe the plan was to have him killed as a cop killer in the theater. I don’t know but your question about this raises another interesting question. If it was such a complex plot why would the plotters allow Oswald to live to face trial ?

    1. Jean, can you walk us thru this: I don’t see that the wiki argument you present is actually substantiated in the LA Times article by reporter Carol J. Williams.(footnote 58). Word search of her piece for terms ‘lucidity’ ‘coaching’, ‘exploiting’ come up empty. Perhaps I am missing something in the wiki version of events, but I do not see that the footnote offered in any way supports the wording in the paragraph, to wit:

      “‘Posthumous allegations: “deathbed confession” of involvement in JFK Assassination” [edit]
      After Hunt’s death, Howard St. John Hunt and David Hunt stated that their father had recorded several claims about himself and others being involved in a conspiracy to assassinate President John F. Kennedy.[2][58] Notes and audio recordings were made. In the April 5, 2007 issue of Rolling Stone, Howard St. John Hunt detailed a number of individuals purported to be implicated by his father including Lyndon B. Johnson, Cord Meyer, David Phillips, Frank Sturgis, David Morales, Antonio Veciana, William Harvey, and Lucien Sarti.[2][59] The two sons alleged that their father cut the information from his memoirs to avoid possible perjury charges.[58] According to Hunt’s widow and other children, the two sons took advantage of Hunt’s loss of lucidity by coaching and exploiting him for financial gain.[58] The Los Angeles Times said they examined the materials offered by the sons to support the story and found them to be “inconclusive”.[58]'”

    2. Re:
      “The Salon article says, “Laura Hunt ultimately cut short her husband’s extraordinary journey of truth telling with his son.”

      Wikipedia says, “According to Hunt’s widow and other children, [Saint John and his brother David] took advantage of Hunt’s loss of lucidity by coaching and exploiting him for financial gain.”

      That was a paraphrase of this statement on page two of the LA Times article:

      “Hunt’s widow and her two children, 27-year-old Austin and 23-year-old Hollis, dismiss the brothers’ story, saying it is the result of coaching an old man whose lucidity waxed and waned in his final months.

      [Hunt’s daughter] Kevan bitterly accuses her brothers of “elder abuse,” saying they pressured their father for dramatic scenarios for their own financial gain. Hunt’s longtime lawyer, Bill Snyder, says: “Howard was just speculating. He had no hard evidence.”

      1. [Quote On]Hunt’s longtime lawyer, Bill Snyder, says: “Howard was just speculating. He had no hard evidence.”[Quote Off]

        Hunt’s lawyer was probably protecting his client from committing perjury relative to his testimony in the Libery Lobby case.

      2. So if I understand this, Jean – and please correct me if I’m wrong – initially you quoted from a wiki post:

        “According to Hunt’s widow and other children, [Saint John and his brother David] took advantage of Hunt’s loss of lucidity by coaching and exploiting him for financial gain.”

        Now you reveal that the wiki paragraph is actually a paraphrase. Are you still arguing that the wiki quote means the same as what LA Times reporter Williams states here:

        “Hunt’s widow and her two children, 27-year-old Austin and 23-year-old Hollis, dismiss the brothers’ story, saying it is the result of coaching an old man whose lucidity waxed and waned in his final months.

        WHERE does Williams use the term ‘financial gain’ in this paragraph?

        In light of your recent accolade as having set the high bar for respecting nothing less than direct quotes, I find your acceptance of what amounts to an ‘interpretation’ – in fact a conflation of bits and pieces of Williams’ article by some wiki contributor no less – as pretty funny.

    3. From an essay by Adam Houston:

      Kevan, St. John’s sister, accused her brothers of “elder abuse,” telling the Los Angeles Times that the two sons “pressured their father for dramatic scenarios for their own financial gain.” Hunt’s personal lawyer Bill Snyder even said “Howard was just speculating. He had no hard evidence.” [11] A personal statement was uploaded to the internet on behalf of E. Howard Hunt’s family, responding to the claims made by St. John and David. The statement reads [12]:

      There is no such thing as E. Howard Hunt’s “Last Confession,” contrary to claims currently being circulated by Mr. Hunt’s two elder sons, Howard St. John and David Hunt… Motivated by an apparent need for notoriety and financial gains, these theories regarding Mr. Hunt’s alleged knowledge of a JFK assassination conspiracy involving the late President Johnson and now dead CIA agents have no basis in fact… In 2005, Mr. Hunt’s two elder sons proposed a book project in conjunction with an individual with film industry connections. Unfortunately, as things developed, it was clear that the project was not about the interesting details of Mr. Hunt’s life. Rather, it was a vehicle to promote further conspiracy-fueled speculations involving rogue CIA agents and LBJ in the Kennedy assassination. Mr. Hunt definitively rejected that project, and he specifically rejected the theories it contained, both to his attorney, William A. Snyder, Jr. and to his youngest son, Austin, who was living at home and finishing his college courses. When that project did not proceed because of the bizarre conspiracy theories initially promoted, the elder brothers’ opportunities for financial gain faded. Their resulting reaction has been to continue to exploit Mr. Hunt, to create conflict and division within the family, to threaten their siblings and worst of all, to further a very selfish and greedy personal agenda.

      The Hunt Estate and the Hunt Family

      1. Well, that settles it, doesn’t it! ; ~ >

        One of the greatest liars in history, E. Howard Hunt, and his lawyer deny the son’s claim of his father’s involvement in the Crime of the Century and the sensible thing is to take it as gospel.

        I seem to recall attorney Mark Lane made mincemeat of Hunt under oath in the Spotlight suit when Hunt claimed that, rather than being in Dallas on 11.22.63, he was instead in D.C. shopping for Chinese food to take home to his family to chop and cook for their dinner.

        Perhaps assistant professor McAdams can supply us with some checkable quotes from Hunt’s family establishing Hunt’s history of home cooking. I suppose it’s just my lack of patriotism, but I won’t be holding my breath for those citations.

          1. I have visited your website Prof McAdams and read your article. It fails to explain why you think Lane lied. Your best efforts seems to be that he hid publicly held information, not an easy feat. You quote what Hunt says in examination, admit it is damning, and then go off on a tangent about more witnesses stating he wasn’t in Dallas than didn’t. Hunts own explanation of what he was doing at the relevant time changed. Perhaps when you refer to your own opinion you should make it clear thats what you are referring to. I’d give your article a ‘C’.

          2. You quote what Hunt says in examination, admit it is damning,

            Actually, no. Read the article. I said:

            “This testimony might seem terribly damning, but only because Lane has omitted some key facts.”

            What do you think of the fact that Lane said the jury decided that Hunt was part of an assassination plot, when the jurors themselves said the issue was “actual malice?”

            What do you think about Lane’s use of the testimony (obviously false) of Marita Lorenz?

            You don’t get to grade my articles.

        1. I don’t think that someone at Hunt’s level would be know for sure that all of the people he says were involved were actually involved. The “confession” reads and sounds more like Hunt’s belief or his conjecture. It may also have been his last bit of disinformation. Intelligence operations are compartmentalized. Hunt wouldn’t know every level of a conspiracy from LBJ down to Morales. It is possible that he actually thought that the people he named were conspirators but that still wouldn’t mean that they actually were. He didn’t offer any evidence other than saying he knew. He saying that he was offered a part and declined sounds a bit much. Was he approached and told, “Hey Howie, a bunch of us, Morales, LBJ, Cord Meyer, are planning to do in JFK. Do you want in ?” That seems pretty simplistic. Complicated multi level operations don’t happen that way. The various. Compartments are not only unaware of what other compartments are doing they may even be unaware of the existence of other compartments and those operating in any one compartment can be unaware of the overall larger goal they are part of. I think Hunt, at least for me has a credibility issue. He may have had a role but that role may have been as a distraction. If so that distraction may have included “planted” questionability and contradictions about where he was that fateful day. The “confession” about Meyers and LBJ involvement may be as much disinfo as “Castro did it” was.

          1. I think Mark Lane is a very good expert on the JFK Murder. I have read ” Rush to Judgement” and “Plausible Denial” and think they are 2 excellent books on the murder of the JFK.

          2. “I think Mark Lane is a very good expert on the JFK Murder. I have read ”Rush to Judgement” and “Plausible Denial” and think they are 2 excellent books on the murder of the JFK.”

            I thought so too, years ago when I read Rush to Judgment, the first book I’d read on the assassination — until I checked some of Lane’s footnotes and saw he’d distorted testimony outrageously. Compare, for instance, what he claims Helen Markham told him about the Tippit killer with the actual transcript of what she said, or compare his version of why Ruby said he wanted to be taken to Washington with the reason Ruby actually gave.

            Plausible Denial is even worse, imo. Besides distorting what happened at the Hunt libel trial, Lane argued that Oswald never went to Mexico City and then proceeded to leave out almost all the evidence that Oswald was actually there.

            My constant theme here is not “believe the official version,” as some people seem to think. It’s “don’t believe anything unless you’ve checked it for accuracy and have seen the evidence for yourself.”

          3. As noted by Martin Hay…”it is true that a good number of conspiracy theorists have, as Von Pein puts it, “twisted and misrepresented the evidence” in the Kennedy case. But the exact same thing is true of Warren Commission apologists. For example, in 1993, Case Closed author Gerald Posner appeared before a congressional subcommittee claiming that he had interviewed Kennedy’s autopsy doctors, Dr. James J. Humes and Dr. J. Thornton Boswell, who told him they had changed their minds about the location of the entrance wound in the back of JFK’s skull. They now agreed, Posner claimed, that the bullet wound was 10 centimeters higher than stated in their autopsy report and he promised to provide congress with a tape recording of these interviews. But the tape never materialized. Consequently, researcher Dr. Gary Aguilar telephoned Humes and Boswell and was surprised to discover that not only did both doctors deny telling Posner any such thing, but Boswell was adamant that he had never been interviewed by Posner at all. And he was not the only individual to make this complaint. In his book, Posner cited personal interviews with others; including James Tague and Marina Oswald; who said that they too had never even spoken to him.”

          4. ‘My constant theme here is not “believe the official version,” as some people seem to think. It’s “don’t believe anything unless you’ve checked it for accuracy and have seen the evidence for yourself.’ — Jean Davison

            Can you refer to any instance during your time on this site that you have considered objectively – or in your words checked for accuracy and seen the evidence yourself – any of the myriad of challenges to the ballistics of the single bullet theory, most of which have been expertly presented on this site? The trajectory of the alleged single bullet is the cornerstone of the case against Lee Oswald; I don’t recall you asking questions or deliberating those challenges in good faith. I seem to remember you are a strong proponent of the Specter theory, not that that is necessarily an indication that you ‘believe [unconditionally] in the official version’.

  13. If the CIA, directly or indirectly, had any involvement in the assassination of JFK, they would never EVER admit unless there was a mountain of evidence they couldn’t deny. The entire credibility of the organization would be compromised by such an admission, even at this late date.

    1. For whom does the CIA have credibility today? For people who have never stepped outside the media world, maybe, but for people actually engaged in thinking about such issues I don’t think it is there. They could be given credit as being capable of great destruction, death, confusion, fear, and other evils, but not as a legitimate *protective* agency. It seems they are simply a tool which is used by people with power over it, usually based outside the halls of government (it being formed by Wall St. lawyers). Anthony Sutton’s work also sheds interesting light on the Cold War and the lead up to it, how both Nazism and the Soviet system were funded and supported by Wall St. firms, which also went on to form the OSS/CIA, which is sort of outside the bounds of mainstream bubble. (Intro to the work of Anthony Sutton: Sorry, for a bit of a tangent there.

      1. Thank you for bringing up Antony Sutton’s work, it is of critical value to grasp that the Soviet Union never had it’s own independent industrial complex, all of the technology the Soviet Union had was “gifted” to them by western industry.

        Sutton’s “Wall Street” volumes are of the essence, as well as his most important work of all ‘Skull & Bones’:



  14. Actually the case against the CIA is nonexistent .
    A “deathbed confession” that Hunt supposedly told to an estranged son ( and self-admitted drug abuser) that contradicts everything that Hunt said in regards to the assassination while he was alive should generate some suspicion. When coupled with the fact that a $5 million movie offer for Hunt’s story was dropped largely because he wouldn’t support a conspiracy angle the possible motive for a “deathbed confession” becomes even clearer. When one investigates what the rest of the Hunt family said about St.John’s relationship with his father and his financial situation serious questions should be asked about the veracity of his book’s allegations.
    There is no evidence that Harvey was in Dallas on Nov. 22, 1963. Talbot can’t even prove that the man who he claims saw Harvey off from a Rome airport was EVEN IN ITALY at the time in question.
    Aside from suspicions and assumptions unsupported by physical evidence this story has no real credibility -except to those who have already made up their minds and physical evidence does not matter.

    1. Nonexistent? Someone was impersonating Oswald in Mexico City (according to CIA phone tap transcripts), making it look like he was associating with a KGB assassin. The CIA had 10 chances to photograph “Oswald” making these trips but failed to do so. The audio transcripts were sent to the FBI right after the assassination, and they said the person talking wasn’t Oswald. Two CIA agents lied under oath to the HSCA about these incidents. And this is just one of several data points. Circumstantial? Yes. Nonexistent? No.

      I personally don’t put much stock in jokers like St. John Hunt either. But there’s serious evidence out there.

      1. The audio transcripts were sent to the FBI right after the assassination, and they said the person talking wasn’t Oswald.

        Uh, no. That’s a factoid:

        Two CIA agents lied under oath to the HSCA about these incidents.

        Be specific. Who lied, and what was the lie?

        Someone was impersonating Oswald in Mexico City (according to CIA phone tap transcripts)

        Again, untrue. You are quoting conspiracy book factoids.

  15. The circumstantial case against the CIA is strong. This case is likely to become stronger, but I would be astounded if it were ever conclusive.
    It is just conceivable that it would be expedient, at some point in future, for the Director of the CIA to confirm its role in 1963. Its a political judgment sadly.

  16. Mr. Talbot has presented a monumental work regarding the Truth about History in the USA from the 1930’s through JFK’s Assassination. His assertions regarding the Assassination can not be dismissed. Elements of the CIA concerning covert actions, executive action and counter intelligence were still under control of Dulles in 1963 in spite of JFK’s firing of him per Mr. Talbot’s documentation.
    In conjunction with the work of others, in my simple but somewhat well read opinion, yes he’s got it right.

    1. Yes Ronnie. I saw Talbot give a presentation on Skype at this year’s JFK Lancer’s conference in Dallas.

      He re-iterated the same thing.

  17. David Talbot makes a convincing argument that employees of the CIA participated in the assassination of President Kennedy. The Hunt declaration is probably one of the most compelling “confessions” to come out in the last 25 years. One name mentioned by Hunt and only mentioned in passing by others is Cord Meyers. Most books feature Cord as a propaganda specialist but documents released by the CIA in 2006 indicates he was actually Chief, Covert Action Staff reporting to Richard Helms. In this role, responsible for all the agency’s covert actions, Cord Meyers would be an expert in planning and implementing the assassination.

  18. I’d also like them to release the section of the Lopez Report entitled “Was Oswald an agent of the CIA?” assuming it still exists. Maybe one day Eddie Lopez will tell us.

  19. The CIA as an organization probably didn’t kill JFK.

    However, some individual CIA officers acting on their own might have been involved with a conspiracy to kill JFK.

    1. “However, some individual CIA officers acting on their own might have been involved with a conspiracy to kill JFK.”~Neil

      The problem with that scenario is that there was a systemic cover-up, one that is maintained to this day. The idea that the assassination was a personal vendetta of some small group of individual CIA agents simply does not stack up when one considers all the details and interlocking connections in DPD, Intelligence, FBI, and the Political milieu. If it was not sanctioned from the very top of the political food chain heads would have rolled. Files would not have been sequestered for half a century.
      This indicates a systemic coup d’etat by the military industrial complex.

      1. Willy Whitten I think you would be more correct if you would say coup d’état by Military Financial FBI complex with CIA been bogy man scapegoat Its clear to me LHO was sent to Russian research Lab as fake defector to get samples of Russians latest Transistor compositions This was Col Boris Pash’s military intelligence Job with Satellite and ICBM being top priority in 1959.There was no one closer to white Russians in Dallas then Pash he was long time protégé of Davison at JP Morgan. Its also interesting that AEC was depositing Nuclear waste in early 1960 into oil wells in Texas involving many people with links to LHO. If you take close look at Army Intelligence links and the Lies told by Pash and Col Robert Ellis Jones to Congressional committee all the pieces of puzzle fit.

    2. Neil, this Politico article which is based on a declassified internal journal article says that McCone didn’t know about plots.
      “In congressional testimony in 1978, after public disclosures about the Castro plots, McCone claimed that he could not have shared information about the plots with the Warren Commission in 1964 because he was ignorant of the plots at the time. Other CIA officials “withheld the information from me,” he said.”

      Seems like underlings and Dulles kept things from the top echelons, IF that’s true.

      So it could be true that rogue agents acted on their own?

  20. Mr. Talbot may be on to something by tapping into the rich vein called the CIA, which continues to hide a multitude of secrets concerning activities of its agents and assets, particularly from the JFK era. Regardless of any withheld files, the CIA was the primary entity engaged in assassination of leaders in the world in the 1960’s: Executive Action.

  21. I’m reading Devil’s Chessboard right now and I haven’t gotten to that part yet. Almost through part one, have to put the book away every few paragraphs, those bloody Nazis!

    1. I liked all the historical backround of Dulles working with the Nazi’s. But, I think the best part of the book was the last part, where he gets into the murder of JFK. He did offer up new material on Wild Bill Harvey and his trip to Dallas when he was stationed in Rome, Italy.

  22. I think Talbot is correct. I read his book and he did not even get into the Cabell Connection. When JFK fired Dulles, he also fired Charles Cabell, the Deputy director of the CIA who was the primary architect of the Bay of Pigs invasion. C. Cabell’s brother , Earle Cabell, was the mayor of Dallas when JFK was murdered and as such Earle controlled the Dallas Police. Earle could tell the Police to go and arrest the “killer” in the Texas Movie Theatre, which is where LHO’s CIA handler told him to go. LHO’s handler was David Atlee Phillips ,who told Dulles where LHO was right after JFK was killed. Talbot did not get that much into Phillips (DAP), but DAP was key player the JFK murder and the Bay of PIgs Invasion.

  23. Having read the Salon article by David Talbot, and of course studying this matter for more than 45 years, I think it is more than reasonable to assert that the CIA, representing the National Security State assassinated John Kennedy. The circumstantial evidence is simply overwhelming.

    Whether a “smoking gun” document shows up or not, enough documents and information has been available for decades to make the case that Kennedy was killed by the military industrial complex.

    Although I fully support the effort to have all the documents released, I don’t find it necessary to wait and hope for that final answer to arrive that will amount to a “confession” by CIA or any formal authority; because we will never know what documents and evidence has already been destroyed.

    Certainty is a harsh mistress – Beyond reasonable doubt is the best route to rational conclusions.

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