What Orest Pena knew

Orest Pena’s story is particularly compelling because he was trusted by the FBI agents in New Orleans. As a bar owner of Cuban descent, he saw and heard a lot of interest to law enforcement. Oswald had visited his bar in the summer of 1963 in the company of a man Pena described as Mexican. Pena also said he saw Oswald with FBI agent Warren DeBreuys on several occasions. DeBreuys denied this and denigrated Pena as unreliable.

In fact, Pena was able to prove that he had been a confidential source for the FBI and still his testimony was ignored, no doubt in part due to the everyday racism which infected even the liberal lawyers of theWarren Commission who could not imagine a Cuban coujld be as credible as a white FBI agent.

The HSCA took him more seriously and was able to incorporate his testimony into their account of the assassination but no one else has been able to read his testimony ever since.

Such is one of the uses of classification. It prevents people from asking follow up questions. Pena is now dead. His testimony will shed new light on the FBI’s interest in and relationship with Oswald.

[Query for readers; Does anybody have a picture of Orest Pena?]

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