Sunday, March 18, 2012

BRIAN LATELL: Another CIA Hack-Disinformationist

The headlines in today's Miami Herald:
fairly screamed about some newfangled "revelations" about the JFK assassination (made by a former CIA "analyst" Brian Latell) and claimed an alleged role by Fidel Castro. Also indicating Fidel "knew" Lee Oswald was going to try to eliminate JFK - presumably to further the Cuban cause. The name of this execrable piece of offal, which I wouldn't waste a load of lickspittle on, far less $29.95, is entitled 'Castro’s Secrets: The CIA and Cuba’s Intelligence Machine'.

It bears the veneer of some new insider info, but in fact is merely another in a long line of CIA DISINFO, churned out over the years, and supported by CIA assets and networks to try to convince the American people there was no conspiracy in the JFK assassination and Lee Oswald was the lone gunman.

For those of us who know better, it's like playing 'whack-a-mole' and every time you whack one disinformation book, spook or faux source down, another seems to erupt to take its place. But as the 50th anniversary of the assassination approaches we expect ever more of these efforts, including - I understand - an HBO series next year (produced by Tom Hanks) that will attempt to bolster Vince Bugliosi's obsessive hack baloney in his 1600+ page "Rewriting History' that Oswald acted alone. In future blogs next month I will show why Hanks is truly wasting his reputation and his money on this project. He'd do much better to do a follow-up of 'The Pacific'! But hey, maybe he loves wasting time on useless propaganda projects!

Anyway, let's deal with Latell's book. Let me begin by citing again CIA document 1035-960 and one of its paramount objectives:

CIA document 1035-960:

RE: Concerning Criticism of the Warren Report

Possible actions to be taken:

b. To employ propaganda assets to [negate] and refute the attacks of the critics. Book reviews and feature articles are particularly appropriate for this purpose. The unclassified attachments to this guidance should provide useful background material for passing to assets.

And we now know, after this document was produced, that one of the other methods of "refutation" has been to launch or initiate books (e.g. Gerald Posner's 'Case Closed' in 1993) based entirely on disinformation. What I want to do is give a number of such examples which appear in Latell's book. But before doing so, allow me to set the stage as it were for readers. And I will be very blunt here.

Question: WHY should anyone in his or her right mind believe a pack of inveterate liars and their disinfo lackeys who had no compunction about blowing an airliner out of the sky off the coast of Barbados, on Oct. 6, 1976, killing all 73 on board- the entire Cuban National Fencing Team?

As Warren Hinckle and William Turner note in their excellent book, ‘Deadly Secrets: The CIA-Mafia War Against Castro and the Assassination of JFK’ (p. 384, Thunders Mouth Press, 1992):

Two men who had deplaned in Barbados, Freddy Lugo and Hernan Ricardo Lusano, were interrogated after joking about the bombing in a Barbados taxicab. The two were employed by Luis Posada…and confessed that Posada and (Orlando) Bosch had supplied them with two bombs, which they planted on the Cubana aircraft.”

Of course, this dastardly terror strike was personal to me since as I’d noted in an earlier blog,

I was at the Paradise Beach on the southwest coast of the island with my five nieces when it occurred. We witnessed the explosion, wondering what the hell had happened – then watched in horror barely an hour and a half later as bloody body parts washed ashore. Even now, as adult women, they're unable to venture anywhere near that particular beach.

The prevailing thought at the time was some malfunction occurred and a plane just blew up more or less by accident. It was only years later that it was ascertained that the two questioned in Barbados were hired thugs commissioned by anti-Castro extremist Cubans and the CIA .

Hinckle and Warner go on to note (ibid.) that Venezuelan Police later raided Posada’s apartment and found bomb equipment and plans, including a map of Washington, DC, indicating these vermin were also behind the infamous Letelier assassination.

The authors continued by noting that “the CIA hand in the terrorist destruction of the Cubana airliner materialized two weeks later” when a CIA double agent named Ignacio Rodruguez-Mena blew the whistle on them, evidently enraged as he might have been on the flight except his wife was late arriving at the departure terminal.

We also know at the time these "Oswald-Castro did it" tricks emerged, the one key person behind it was George Johannides, the Chief of Psychological Warfare branch of the CIA's JM/WAVE station in Miami . Almost all his energy was directed to: a) implicating Oswald in the assassination by a strategy of "sheepdipping" (see John Newman's excellent 'Oswald and the CIA') and b) processing disinformation from pseudo -double agents and deliberate false sources to implicate Castro, the Soviets, Oswald or all three.

One of the earlier mutations of this propaganda trick appeared several years ago when a German movie director, Wilfried Huismann, claimed that after three years of research and contacts with "former Cuban and KGB Agents” he'd learned that "Cuba provided the gunman with money and support".

The gambit was exposed by author James Douglass in his (2008) book, JFK and the Unspeakable: Why He Died and Why It Matters. The CIA had actually manufactured a phony letter (probably dictated by David Atlee Phillips or one of his cronies) to a "Comrade Kostin" from Lee Oswald, which was to be integrated into the fake “Oswald in Mexico City” files. Problem was these dummies didn't even get the name correct, as it was actually Valery Vladimirovitch Kostikov.

The bogus, confected letter was delivered to the Soviet Embassy in Washington, and specifically mentioned Oswald’s alleged comings and goings in Mexico City including a “meeting with the Soviet director of assassinations”. Prior to the fake letter, Kostikov had already been set up using fraudulent telephone calls (and transcripts of said calls) purportedly from Oswald. This prompted a later memo from Clarence Kelly to the then FBI Director that Kostikov was (sic) “the most dangerous KGB agent in the hemisphere.’

After JFK’s slaying, the real purveyors and plotters revealed the “material” of the incriminating phone calls, transcripts and letter – manufacturing the Kostikov-Cuban- Oswald connection. (Douglass, op. cit. p. 228, as the author notes the letter’s 3rd paragraph extended the complicity to Cuba.)

When critics like Douglass combed through these claims of Huismann, it was clear a more coherent propaganda effort would be needed in the future to try to at least make the Cuba-Fidel-Oswald connection stick. Maybe they needed to get a real CIA analyst to do a book, as opposed to some film director from Deutschland.

Again, I refer readers to the earlier blog link given where I also show FOIA documents of what the CIA planned to do to instigate a war or confrontation with Castro. Please look them over carefully. Does it make sense to you that the same outfit that intended to launch "Remember the Maine" incidents in Cuban harbors, as well as sinking of refugee boats (carrying Cuban refugees) on the high seas, and setting fire to installations or bombing them with likely random killing of innocent Cubans, can be trusted to tell the truth on Fidel Castro, Oswald and JFK? If you believe that I have 100 acres of prime beach front property on Barbados' north shore to sell you for a song!

Anyway, let's get back to one of Latell's claims to the effect that Oswald, "a belligerent Castro supporter, grew frustrated when officials at the Cuban embassy in Mexico City refused to give him a visa to travel to the island", oh and he "promised to shoot Kennedy" to prove his revolutionary credentials. As Latell writes:

"Fidel knew of Oswald’s intentions — and did nothing to deter the act,”

Which, of course, repeats the lie that the person appearing at the Cuban Embassy in Mexico City was really Lee Oswald. Readers can compare for themselves the photos of the real Lee Oswald, and the person (a heavy set male) photographed by CIA monitor cameras in Mexico City at the time Oswald was alleged to have appeared there.

Of course, the CIA regularly monitored the Cuban and Soviet embassy compounds in Mexico City, and had photographs of anyone coming or going. A cable dated Oct. 10, 1963 referred to (John Newman, Oswald and the CIA, p. 399)

" American male, who identified himself as Lee OSWALD, contacted the Soviet Embassy in Mexico City inquiring whether the Embassy had received any news concerning a telegram which had been sent to Washington. The American was described as approximately 35 years old, with an athletic build, about six feet tall, with a receding hairline."

This description, of course, fairly well matches the heavy set dude on the right side of the graphic which bears the actual image of the "Oswald" captured. Is that really Lee Harvey? No fucking way!

It was certainly not Oswald, who at only 5'9" (at most) and slight of build (160 lbs.) possessed a decidedly un-athletic physique. University of Maryland Military Science Professor Newman also makes reference (ibid.) to a note scribbled in the margin of the above cable by a CIA employee with the words: "Not Oswald! WRONG!"

Hey, maybe this innocent spook wasn't let in on the game? Who knows? When spooks run operations with multiple dummie fronts, double agents, cut-outs and the like, it's easy to get trapped in your game. They can't cover ALL the bases, all the time!

The point is that Latell repeats a lie, so is already caught out as a propagandizer, not a truth teller. The reason Castro wouldn't have known, is fairly clear: because the character in Mexico City at the Cuban Embassy had nothing to do with him! Why also would he have known the actual Lee Harvey Oswald, when as Newman shows, Oswald was likely an agent working for the U.S. government to expose the assassination. As Newman notes, p. 59, Oswald had two files prepared by the CIA and never disclosed by the Warren Commission: OS-351-164 (The 'OS' for Office of Security') and 74-500, where '74' denotes the country code for Russia, Newman, op. cit., p. 57. Indeed, it is Douglass who indicates it was Oswald who made an anonymous phone call to Chicago days before a planned hit of JFK in that city on Nov. 2, 1963 which led Kennedy to cancel his trip. The suspect later arrested was another "lone gunman": Thomas Arthur Vallee.

Say one thing say the next, at least Latell admits he had no hard evidence for any Oswald-Castro role in the Kennedy assassination. As he told the Herald:

"I don’t say Fidel Castro ordered the assassination, I don’t say Oswald was under his control. He might have been, but I don’t argue that, because I was unable to find any evidence for that."

Then why bring it up at all, and in such a dubious book? Also, why make reference to "Oswald’s outspoken public support for Cuba — he had staged several one-man demonstrations and even scuffled with members of an anti-Castro group" when you're unable to produce the REAL hidden files on these activities, and the actual puppeteer behind them: George Joannides? (The CIA up to now has refused to release any Joannides files which shows me they're not invested in any truth, no matter how many "analysts" or apologists they trot out.)

What we do know (as James Douglass shows) is that part of the sheep -dipping process was painting Oswald as some pro-Castro extremist. We know that this part of the pre-cover-up was likely orchestrated by George Joannides in conjunction with the DRE (Revolutionary Cuban Students group) to manufacture incidents such as the altercation with Carlos Bringuier on Canal Street. By doing this, Joannides also set the stage for the later Castro –conspiracy theory, that it was really Fidel who had Kennedy killed because of attempts made on the Cuban leader’s life via Operation ZR-Rifle.

My point? Latell's book is an absolutely, totally useless waste of paper (and trees) without supporting files on Joannides' activities. But the CIA refuses to release those. So what are we then to conclude?

Latell in his book then goes into a lot of babble on Cuban "double agents" who he suggest leaked the info on Oswald and Castro, but again, this is useless without us also knowing what Joannides was doing.

Lastly, the biggest argument against all this "Fidel killing JFK" hogwash is that nearly a year earlier than the Kennedy hit, a rapprochement with Castro (through his aide-de-camp Rene Vallejo) had already been set up by Kennedy. This has been well documented by National Archives contributor Peter Kornbluh, and paved the way to normalization of relations, including trade. ('Kennedy and Castro: What Might Have Been', by Peter Kornbluh, in The Baltimore Sun, Aug. 22, 1999, p. 1C)

National Security Archivist Kornbluh shows (by reference to documents he has accessed), it was William Attwood, a Washington lawyer (who had negotiated the original release of the Bay of Pigs prisoners), who was instrumental. Attwood was charged with becoming the first American emissary to secure Castro’s ear and trust in a year-long rapprochement. In particular, to show good will and good faith, Attwood arranged for $62 million in medicines and food aid as part of the prisoner deal. All this was approved by JFK and likely sealed his death warrant in the Agency.

Why on Earth would Castro compromise all of this over some half-baked plot allegedly using a "lone defector"? (In fact, Oswald wasn't an actual defector, which in any case isn't a crime, but part of a CIA false defector program set up as early as 1958, if not sooner. This is documented by Victor Marchetti in his book The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence. )

The true treachery in all this, from the true traitors, was the CIA's use of Rolando Cubela (a Cuban political figure whom Castro trusted) to attempt to murder Castro (using a ball point pen rigged with hypodermic needle to inject cyanide) and being told that a phrase in Kennedy's Nov. 18, 1963 speech in Miami ("the small band of conspirators") was the "green light" for a 'go'. (Douglass, op. cit. p. 251)

Douglass goes on to note that (ibid.):

"The CIA, by reversing the meaning of Kennedy's speech to motivate its own hired assassin, created a dogma of disinformation that it would disseminate for decades.....that the Miami speech was meant as an encouragement for murder, not dialogue".

And of course, Latell's despicable effort is only the latest mutation of this disinformation process.

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