In 1977, a document surfaced which was investigated by the House Select Committee on Assassinations; in addition it triggered decades of speculation in regard to a French connection in the assassination of President Kennedy.  The document itself was a March, 1964 request to the FBI from French security – a request that the FBI provide information as to the suspected expulsion of a suspected OAS terrorist, Jean Souetre, from Dallas, Texas on November 22, 1963. The request noted that Souetre might have been expelled to either Mexico or Canada.

The French request, generated though the legal staff of the American embassy in Paris (a position staffed though the FBI), provided no specific source or explanation as to why French security believed that Jean Souetre had been in the United States, or specifically in Dallas. The apparent reason for their interest was the planned visit by French President Charles de Gaulle to Mexico and Souetre had been charged with planning at least one attack on the French president. The document also revealed that French security had associated multiple names with the inquiry, including Michael Roux and Michael Hertz (possibly a misspelling of Michael Mertz?).

For reference, it should be noted that Michael “Mertz” was known to the FBI and had been traveling into the United States from Canada. Mertz had earlier worked for French security, had conducted intelligence operations against the OAS (including against Souetre). However he had also become associated with a major drug smuggling effort bringing cocaine from France into the United States through Canada. For those interested in the Mertz connection, The Heroin Trail (Newsday) researched and describes the network created by Dominic and Jean Venturi and provides details on their associate, Michael Mertz. Mertz had been previously been involved in counter intelligence activities against the OAS and following his penetration of a bombing attempt against President de Gaulle in 1962, he and his family had been moved to Montreal for protection. From that location he helped grow and diversify cocaine networks running into the United States.

https://www.amazon.com/Heroin-Trail-Newsday/dp/B0032CX7FS

Based on the French security request of 1964 – an inquiry which led to an in depth FBI investigation at the time – assassination researchers began to pursue the possible involvement of Souetre and the OAS in the Kennedy assassination. As a consequence, the  Souetre story would become a staple in assassination research and writings.

However, with the release of actual documents related to the FBI’s own 1964 investigation, the matter is actually becomes much less mysterious. What we can now see is that the Dallas FBI SAC (special agent in charge) provided a lengthy response to the FBI Director in regard to an in depth inquiry on Jean Souetre, to related names that has come up in the inquiry and the details of a Frenchman using the true name provided in the French inquiry (Michael Roux). The FBI determined that Micahel Roux was in fact Texas during the period in question and had departed by ground transport to Mexico via Loredo – although not on November 22.  That FBI summary report is now available online at the Mary Ferrell Foundation:

https://www.maryferrell.org/showDoc.html?docId=149217&relPageId=1&search=souetre

The FBI report relates that in March 1977, a foreign reporter (British Citizen) working for National Inquirer had contacted the FBI in regard to their investigation of Jean Souetre alias Michel Roux, alias Michael Hertz who had supposedly been in Dallas on the day of the JFK assassination. The reporter, David Duffy, stated that Souetre was a French army captain who was a member of the OAS and a terrorist was reportedly deported to Mexico or Canada shortly after the assassination.

As reference Duffy cited a document reportedly gained via FOIA (agency unknown) by the National Inquirer and given to him as a research and writing assignment. The document was dated 1, April, 1964 and stated that on March 5, [1964] the US Legal Attaché (FBI officer) at the Paris Embassy had relayed a query to FBI office in New York as to a report that Michael Roux aka Michel _ertz [first letter illegible] had been in Fort Worth and Dallas Texas on November 22 and had been expelled to either Mexico or Canada on that date.

The French query stated that in January, 1963 an individual named Micael Roux had received a written communication from an American dentist living in had Houston Texas – the French security concern was that Roux was a alias being used by Jean Souetre, a suspected OAS terrorist and that his presence in the United States (and possibly Mexico) was a concern in regard to a planned visit by Charles De Gaulle to Mexico. FBI Dallas had initially advised the National Inquirer reporter that it had no files on Jean Souetre or any expulsion from Dallas but that it would query IRS [apparently a typo for INS].

The full FBI summary report includes a Dallas inquiry summary of March, 11, 1964 stating that a background check had been done on Michel Roux and that he had indeed visited a family in Fort Worth, Texas on November 22-23, ultimately departing Texas to Mexico via the border crossing at Laredo, Texas. That had been communicated to the Embassy Legat in Paris who had advised French security of the details and the identification of Michael Roux.  With that information French security had actually located Roux in Paris and determined that he was indeed not Jean Souetre. The Dallas office and the FBI had closed their inquiry after being so advised by the Legat in Paris.

Another document in the FBI summary file – a memo from the Director to the Legat in Paris – provided details on the family in Fort Worth (Leon Gachman) who had revived Roux as a guest. The report noted that Gachman and his family had been in Paris in October, 1962 and met Roux, a hotel clerk. Roux had served in the French Army, been stationed in Algeria and was interested in emigrating to the U.S. and opening a restaurant. Gachman had invited Roux to visit and in November, 1963 Roux had traveled to the United States and visited both Houston and Forth Worth in Texas.

He had been with the Gachmans in Fort Worth on November 21-23.  Gachman had used his business connections to arrange a job for Roux in a Mexican Hotel. The plan was that he would have worked in Mexico while filing papers to obtain a U.S. visa – apparently some element of the plan did not work out as Roux had returned to Paris at a later date.  The FBI document relates that Roux had entered the U.S. via New York on November 19, 1963 and departed for Mexico via Laredo on December 6, 1963; the FBI had concluded Roux was indeed not Jean Souetre.

As part of the FBI inquiry into the Roux affair, the Bureau had also located an individual (Lawrence Alderson) in Houston who had indeed exchanged letters with Jean Soutre. Alderson had become friends with Soietre while stationed in France in 1953. When contacted by the FBI in 1964, Alderson related  that he had received no communications from Souetre (including no Christmas Cards) in over a year and that he had not been personally visited by Souerte. Apparently Alderson had been identified though the tracing of a letter/card which he had sent to Souetre from Alderson in Texas. The letter from Alderson  to Souetre may indeed have been the original trigger for the inquiry from French security (IS France) in regard to Souetre being in Texas.

http://documents.theblackvault.com/documents/jfk/NARA-Oct2017/2018/124-10224-10062.pdf

The FBI investigative file also includes a message of March 13, 1962 stating that French Security had based in the information provided by the FBI, that any further investigation should be discontinued. Beyond that the summary file contains information relayed to the FBI during the inquiry.  One CIA memo, of March 9, 1964 relates that the true Jean Souetre had been known to the Agency during the summer of 1963.  It notes that the CIA, on July 12, 1963 had advised the FBI (and apparently the State Department as well) of that contact in a letter headed “OAS Attempt to Enlist the Cooperation of the United States for its anti-deGaulle Activities”.  Along with that letter the CIA had furnished a photo of Souetre and a copy of a June 25, CIA report relating to alleged OAS approach relating to the ousting of DeGaulle.

https://www.maryferrell.org/showDoc.html?docId=64996&search=jean_souetre#relPageId=2&tab=page

The CIA established a Souetre file based on a foreign contact by Souetre and a Captain Guerin in July, 1963. It appears that the approach was made via the American Embassy in Spain. A CIA file also noted that as of June that year Souetre had been representing himself in Portugal as the “external affairs”. The CIA document index shows reflects no other information for 1963.  The HSCA inquiry turned up no additional records which would have supported the idea that Souetre did travel to the United States in 1963.

https://www.maryferrell.org/showDoc.html?docId=125409&relPageId=2&search=jean_souetre

It does need to be noted that JFK assassination researchers such as Bud  Fensterwald continued to pursue the possible French connection, locating French sources who fueled the mystery with anecdotal reports of a visit by Souetre to Cuban exile training camps near New Orleans in 1963 and even the idea that OAS members were serving as trainers in those same camps. Unfortunately Fensterwald provided no credentials nor background on his sources nor any explanation as to why they would have had such information on Souerte or the OAS.

https://www.maryferrell.org/showDoc.html?docId=6762&search=jean_souetre#relPageId=71&tab=page

Ultimately the National Inquirer did field its article on the subject, several years later, in 1983. At the time Souetre was working as a casino public relations manager in France, near the Swiss border. Souetre admitted to having been accused of an attack against de Gaulle but denied ever having even traveled to the United States.

https://www.maryferrell.org/showDoc.html?docId=8907&relPageId=41&search=jean_souetre

Given that the Souetre connection seems likely to live on forever, in 1999 Souetre was interviewed once again – still working in the same public relations job at the same casino. In an extended interview he reaffirmed that he had not been in Dallas, while taking the opportunity to point suspicions towards his personal nemesis Michael Mertz – one of the French security officers who had effectively penetrated the OAS. In that interview, over thirty years after the fact he endorsed the speculation that Mertz had been in Dallas, had been recruited into a conspiracy against President Kennedy and that Mertz had simply used Souetre’s name as an alias.

Triangle of Death, Bradley O’Leary, Chapter 21, “Souetre Speaks”

https://books.google.com/books?id=44l1B7dAZuEC&pg=PT77&lpg=PT77&dq=Divonne-+les-+Bains+Souetre&source=bl&ots=obfaNzJEkR&sig=Va1296ShHSjHE8bxP1tYJP4Q754&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwier8ia0obMAhVGbB4KHS1rAkMQ6AEIIDAA#v=onepage&q=Divonne-%20les-%20Bains%20Souetre&f=false

Clearly the story of Souetre in Dallas on November 22, 1963 is simply too good a story to ever fade away – in spite of the details available in for the rather dry and factual FBI inquiry of 1964 which had put the matter to rest for French security.

Addendum:  For clarification I should add that Souetre’s full name was Jean-Rene Souetre.. Also in regard to Mertz, the attack which he helped foil was carried out in July, 1961, at Point-sur-Seine:

https://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&sl=fr&u=http://www.francaislibres.net/liste/fiche.php%3Findex%3D85112&prev=search

 

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18 responses »

  1. Brandon Wright says:

    Thanks for writing this Larry. I asked a question about Souetre earlier and you were quick to respond and show why it holds little water. I keep coming back to it for a number of reasons. William Harvey’s plan to have a stable of skilled contractors around the globe, to be called on for various jobs where little to no connection to the CIA could be made seemed to fit. I thought of QJWIN/WIROGUE as agents in charge of this network, but that’s evolved over time as well. The various reports of “Frenchy on the Grassy knoll” or a German speaking assassin as one shooter in Dealey Plaza that day pointed to Souetre as well. He’s from Luxembourg, a French citizen speaking German as well, and his time with right wing mercenaries around the globe seemed to fit the profile of a Harvey stable assassin. There’s also no shortage of writing about the heroin trade, and how French/Corsican personnel could factor in. He’s also white, which would seemingly blend in a little better in Dallas, at least to my thinking, than a team of Cubans would.

    So Souetre’s out… is there any other group that could fit in? Were any of the Interpen guys like Steve Wilson, William Seymour or Dick Whatley joining Roy Hargraves in working with the Cubans in AMWORLD? Have you settled on a unit name for the Wheaton names? Jenkins’ pathfinders? Rip’s AMHINTs? AMWORLD’s alpha team of commandos? Also, of the Wheaton names, are they all pre Bay of Pigs or did some come along after. If Harvey sent in 2 teams during the missile crisis, did these 2 teams have any contact with each other? Is one AMCOBRA and another a mafia led team? Did one of those teams get captured? Does Morales’ Comandos Mambises fit into this? Thanks for your time.

    • larryjoe2 says:

      Whew, those are some deep questions for a blog reply..grin. First off, specifically in regard to Harvey, he began building a European network to support Staff D break ins, burglaries and strong arm stuff to collect signals and code materials for intelligence collection (the high risk way) to be used by both CIA and NSA.

      QJWIN was recommend to him as a spotter since that individual (holding a Belgian passport) was deep into drug smuggling and other dirty business and knew the right types for such jobs. He had been used by the station chief there before and was simply handed off to Harvey (for that matter based on research by John Newman that particular crypt appears to have previously been used even earlier by the CIA for liaison work involving drug trafficers).

      That’s not to say that somebody way up the food chain in CIA may not have had dirty contacts which could be used for eliminations – but that does does not show up in the CIA’s real world, ongoing association with murders, which normally involved low level surrogates the Agency was working with at a given time (see NEXUS for examples).

      Certainly we do know that in the real world CIA officers did build groups for very special operations, virtually on the fly. Robertson build one to go to the Congo in early 1964, Tom Clines was trying to build another such group using Cuban exiles circa 66. In fact it was so common to build such pick up groups that the Watergate guys/Cuban exiles thought Hunt was in a sanctioned program (maybe he was, sorta..grin). Others got trapped in similar private ventures by former CIA officers over the years.

      As far as Dallas goes, I would speculate that it was a very special pick up group – assembled by Robertson from operational guys who had been deep in the pre-BOP infiltration and assassination attempts, run by Robertson in post-BOP missions, personally known and trusted to him and among each other. A few fellow-travelers such as Martino (working with Robertson that summer), Vidal and Hargraves might have volunteered for very peripheral roles (not as the tactical team per se). As of 1963 you would find the individuals recruited for the actual tactical group in Dallas associated with AMWORLD, Commandoes Membises and DRE. All of which would have continued to serve them as covers for the Dallas ambush.

      • Brandon Wright says:

        Thanks again Larry, great stuff as always. I had it in my head that Morales would assign a job to Jenkins or Rip. Is this wrong? That might apply only to JMWAVE based operations. If the AMWORLD operation was, by design, based out of Panama or Guatemala, then could Rip take the job right from Hecksher? I’m not suggesting that Morales had no involvement (and it seems like they were close friends), but rather that the team’s positions, roles, and other commands could be exclusively directed by 1 agent. Rip’s team, using Jenkins’ plan… I’m really just looking for best guesses based on current information rather than concrete statements. I’ll check out Nexus. Does Roselli fit into this at all, other than the initial pre Bay of Pigs team?

        Also, not to tangent, but do you see Tony Sforza factoring into this particular plan at all? Was he occupied with the Rolando Cubela operation?

      • larryjoe2 says:

        For some time – and in NEXUS – my view has been that the first phase of the conspiracy would be the sharing of first the outreach and then the highly secret details of the meetings being planned between JFK’s and Castro’s representatives. Ostensibly that should not have even been known to the CIA since only State and cut outs were involved. However the CIA and most specifically JMWAVE and its AMOTS in Mexcio City were alerted, by October, to begin monitoring Castro’s representative – someone who had never been on their radar previously. Who could have monitored the JFK outreach (and actually even dune it under counter intelligence tasking), James Angleton. After all, nobody gets to be above suspicion for foreign influence, not even presidents.

        My speculation is that initially Angleton had warned Harvey of the outreach – given that both men had actually worked together when Harvey was assigned the task of assassination Castro. Following that Harvey advised Morales and likely Roselli in his spring meeting in Florida. After that Morales would have been alerted and at some point started spreading rumors about JFK – likely through Robertson.

        Ultimately Morales, Roselli, Robertson would have had the assets available to make the attack happen in Dallas. Roselli had connections that could bring in Ruby. Morales and Rip could pull together the people….Rip being the team leader. As to Sforza, given how tight he was with Morales and some of his later activities in Chile…maybe, at this point its an open question to me.

  2. Anthony M says:

    Hello

    I wasn’t aware of this information, so thank you. I think you a right in highlight the group around Morales and Robertson as the group from amongst whom the tactical team was drawn. This is off topic, but just to test out some current thinking…
    In terms of the overall strategic planning of the assassination the planner(s) had to have certain pieces of knowledge and the ability to move certain assets / achieve certain results.
    1) The planner had to know of Tumbleweed / AEBURBLE and that information from this source linked Kostikov to Dept. 13 of the KGB (accurately or not).
    2) The planner had to be aware of LIENVOY
    3) The planner had to be aware of Oswald and be able to move him to Mexico City, or create the impression of his alleged calls in Mexico City. This probably means the planner was aware of the probable anti-FPCC operation in New Orleans he appears to have been involved in in the summer of 63.
    4) The planner had to be able to secure access for LHO into the TBSD (and possibly an actual shooter, if that was not LHO) and to be reasonably sure that a suitable sniper’s position would be available.
    5) On the assumption (following Thomas) of three shooters including one on the grassy knoll, one in the TBSD and one in a location to the rear of the present, precise location uncertain, the planner here had to be able to gain access for a shooter to that third location. A possibility here is the Dal Tex, although others exist. Points 4 and 5 suggest the planner may therefore have had connections into the Suite 8F group (including Byrd and H. L Hunt), although this is the point I am least confident on.
    6) The planner had to be able to organise a set of relatively poor phase 1 propaganda items attempting to link LHO to Cuba.
    7) If Newman is correct on the role of the Kostikov ‘poison pill’ the planner had a very deep knowledge of how the government would react to shut the investigation down, or possibly be in a position to know that would happen due to sufficient personal authority of a member of the group.

    Overall I’m inclining to Angleton as a central figure, but with connections out via Dulles and Corcoran to Suite 8F and via Harvey to JM/ WAVE…

    Any major flaws in my thinking / angles I’m missing?.

    • larryjoe2 says:

      Actually, after much wrestling with all of the items you mentioned, I’ve come to think that matters may have been much simpler and that all our research has made things more convoluted than they may actually were (even if I have researched and written about all of those areas myself…sigh).

      First, anyone interested in Cuban affairs and in or around New Orleans in the summer of 1963 – as well as anyone in touch with the DRE members in the city – would have known of Lee Oswald and that his name was publicly associated with Cuba, Castro, Russia and “communism”. Beyond that we have reason (corroborated by several items) to believe that Cuban exiles were aware that he could be contacted and manipulated (illustrated his planned moved to the Washington area).

      Second, it was reasonably obvious to anyone on the ground and monitoring him in New Orleans that he was in touch with the FBI and serving as some sort of source for them – placing the FBI in a difficult position if he was somehow associated with a crime. Anyone monitoring him would have drawn that conclusion from his meet with the FBI after the leafleting incident.

      It would simply be a bonus to know that some sort of counter intelligence operation was going on around Oswald in Mexico City, entangling the CIA in some fashion with him as well. Any CIA officer of any experience would understand that FBI and CIA files on Oswald, showing they were monitoring him or worse yet using him as a source, would generate panic, cover up and file destruction if he were associated with a major crime.

      Third, associating Oswald a the attack would be easy enough, he doesn’t even have to be there – plant something stolen or purchased from him at the scene of the crime and he’s in a conspiracy, doesn’t have to be the shooter. Given that there were several reports of Oswald (or someone looking like him applying for work at buildings on Main Street there may have been options in play early on, the TSBD was good but we really don’t know what the original plan was – we assume the attack was always planned for Elm street strictly based on where it happened….we don’t know that any more than we know what might have been planned for Washington DC.

      Since I view what happened in the cover up as separate from the plan (which was to kill JFK above all else and point towards Castro if possible) which in no way involved a lone shooter or a lone nut I think we also try to reverse engineer too much of the plan from events when there is every reason to believe that the original plan unraveled in the first fifteen minutes or so after the attack…something not all that uncommon.

      So do I know it’s as simple as I laid it out here…nope…but I think that’s a real possibility.

  3. Anthony M says:

    Thanks, that’s a very interesting perspective. I would certainly agree that the cover up is an almost entirely separate thing to the actual assassination, with the probable exception of the Kostikov incident and how that played into justifying the cover up.
    I am also quite happy that personnel at JMWAVE would have been aware of LHO via the DRE.
    I’m less confident that Mexico City could have been staged out of JMWAVE. David Atlee Phillips springs to mind as a link between Mexico City and Miami (and with the ability to travel more widely), but would he have been read in on a Soviet Russia matter such as AEBURBLE and the tentative linking of Kostikov to Dept 13 prior to Oswald’s visit to Mexico? He was head of Cuban Affaires in Mexico So at first sight I doubt it but would defer to others more expert than me on such matters.
    I do also worry about the operational practicalities of aging access to and exit from suitable locations in Dallas. I find it hard to believe that was left to chance and the ref looting work in the TBSD, giving rise to a screen of boxes near the window comes across as very convenient.
    I agree it makes much more sense for the core group to be quite small, but some of the arrangements around building access could have been set up with unwitting participants, although I am very suspicious of Byrd, HL Hunt and actually Johnson also…he was either incredibly lucky or involved.
    The thing about Angleton is his brilliance, paranoia around political leaders and short connection paths into the main suspects, together with access to information. Speculative I know…if those key bits could be explained at a lower level than that I for one would be delighted.

    Thanks

    Anthony

    • larryjoe2 says:

      Well in regard to Mexico City, it seems that we are dredging enough details to document two different counter intelligence operations – one directly involving Phillips and the other with his participation and possibly not his knowledge, driven by Angleton’s office. These are stories in themselves but one specifically involves targeting the Cuban embassy and very possibly recruiting Duran as well as Azcue. And that one involved an AMOT out of JMWAVE, CIA personnel from outside of Mexico City Station were also involved – intel officers as well as an AMOT who had to be someone not known to the Cubans locally. The second operation (and there may well have been three, ongoing over several months) would have involved propaganda operations against the FPCC in support of taking AMWORLD out of the US. In any event, there are a number of possible reasons why someone like Morales (who repeatedly traveled to Mexico City and who was working on a Cuban exfil operation via Mexico in November) would have known that Oswald having been in Mexico City and at the Cuban and Russian embassies would be something that the CIA would be extremely sensitive about in the event that Oswald became a subject of public and media inquiry. I should also point out Morales was officially the military case office for the DRE, and that several of the DRE guys in our Wheaton Names work were on the CIA short list for operational DRE military personnel.

      As to the TSBD, keep in mind that it was an open building with multiple outside access doors and that it housed a number of businesses not just the book depository company. Some of the offices might have been locked over-night but we know from employees the outside doors were left open well into the evening since non depository workers might need access to their offices. The upper floors were accessible from the back stairs – who’s going to steal school books…grin. Beyond that, to illustrate the open access, we know from Ian Griggs fine interviews with employees that even on November 22 at night and on November 23 during the day the whole building was unlocked and open, one fellow came back on Saturday and walked through much of the building. The building simply was not secured in any fashion – and that was after the assassination of a President.

      Stashing a relatively hidden rifle on an upper floor could have been done in a number of ways by any employee, any friend of an employee or virtually any walk in. As to the screen of boxes, keep in mind that areas along the wall of that floor were being cleared of book cartons to enable the flooring work, finding stacks of books like that was helpful to the cover up story of a cunning shooter in the window but in reality stacks like that can be found in several places in the photos…

      Hope that helps and of course I have included Angleton in a fashion as of NEXUS…but certainly not in an operational/tactical role of any sort, that would never fly given his lack of combat experience or operational experience with the ambush team.

  4. Anthony M says:

    Thanks for your very detailed and very thought proviking reply, which I will consider carefully…definitely preferable to try to simplify things as much as realistically possible.
    Could I ask if you could point me in the right direction for documentation on operations in Mexico City involving Morales and AMOTS…wasn’t aware of anything specific on that, so that would be very interesting.
    Overall I’m not convinced that officers st the level of Morales could have put the whole thing together, particularly the Kostikov angle and I remain a bit sceptical about the idea of leaving the shooter locations largely to luck, but I will seriously consider any evidence to the contrary.

    Many thanks again

    • larryjoe2 says:

      On Morales and the AMOTS, I think I spell that it in considerable detail in SWHT/2010 and also in NEXUS (where I also show Angleton’s involvement with the AMOTS and the reorganization of Cuban counter intelligence at JMWAVE in 1961/62) although its important to remember that by 1963, the AMOTS had been integrated into the Cuban Intelligence Service and were technically under Morales’s very good friend Sforza.

      I cover JMWAVE’s new focus on the Castro back channel in NEXUS, including the document that directs looking for surveillance assets among the AMOTS including in Mexco City. Bill Simpich has also written about the JMWAVE MC sub office which included AMOTS, which operated independently of the MC Station in Mexico City.

      As to Kostikov, actually any contacts between Oswald and Soviet embassy staff in MC would have raised flags and issues that needed to be covered up on Oswald since virtually all Soviet embassy officers other than the ambassador themselves were all intelligence, either KGB or GRU. Bottom line is that CIA officer would have known that Oswald looking for entrance to Cuba and Russia in Mexico City would have led him to both embassies and that happening only a few weeks ago before Dallas would have been sensational – if you manage to link in Oswald to the attack in Dallas. Otherwise its meaningless.

      On shooter locations, I’d have to refer you to an good infantry/assault manual. Any good ambush would scout multiple kill zones. Getting Oswald a job along the parade route would simply be the key that finalized the primary site. However I would maintain there would be back up sites as well given that the primary goal of killing JFK was literally overriding. None of that is luck other than where Oswald managed to get a job. And it should be noted that we have evidence he applied for jobs well away from the route even after getting the job at the TSBD…one not far from Love Field (that’s in SWHT 2010 as well…it comes from an actual job application made by Oswald).

      I think what I’m really trying to get across is that we would all love to totally re-engineer the plan from the data we all have now – but there are limits to that. Which I suppose just shows that I have become a very cautious conspiracy nut…grin

  5. Anthony M says:

    Thanks so much for the very detailed and helpful critic and suggested sources. It looks like I shall have to give SWHT a third reading as I may have not fully realised the significance of some of the information in there. Actually it was quite striking how, when I re-read it a while ago how many points there were that I hadn’t fully understood the significance to the first time. This subject is so complex and wide ranging that it benefits from going back over things to test out emerging ideas.
    I will consider your points very carefully. Thanks again

    • larryjoe2 says:

      Honestly, there are a great many bits and pieces in the 2010 edition that are just now coming together for me some eight years later as well. At the time I was writing I thought they were interesting and germane in some sense but I didn’t see patterns that pulled them together. As an example, many of the names were are focused on now in our Wheaton explorations are in the book, but unconnected because I was not aware of the CIA files (or crypts) that actually bring them together operationally.

      The same is true for the material in a couple of the appendices, then it seemed interesting history but now it gives the context for a major rewrite of the CIA’s first Cuba project (and the covert paramilitry Castro assassination plans that were the real key to its success rather than the Roselli/poison pill gambit). Beyond that, when combined with the chapter on the AmWorld project in my Shadow Warfare book, it may also lead us to the actual team that went to Dallas and how that was organized.

      There are other areas discussed in SWHT (including the Odio incident and an intelligence effort to compromise Duran and Azcue) that may now prove to be connected to a core group of individuals as well. Still a work in progress and one being done by many people, not just myself. Its certainly exciting in a sense, just requires some real stamina to keep slogging through the different information, all of which appears to have been obfuscated for a variety of reasons.

  6. Anthony M says:

    Hello Larry

    Just to conclude for the moment, I’ve been considering your points very carefully and will continue to do so.

    I am very happy to agree with you that the evidence strongly points to a team from the anti-Castro groups working with Morales and Robertson as the milieu out of which the tactical team that actually carried out the assassination in Dallas was drawn. You may well be on to something with the ‘Wheaton names’ assuming the basic story behind that is valid (which seems quite possible to me).
    The problem I have in limiting the conspiracy to just the group around Morales, Atlee-Phillips and Robertson is the number of coincidences that we must then assume occurred which happened to work so well for the group who actually benefited from the assassination.
    In essence limiting the operation to that group would imply that the plan essentially worked tactically on the day but then got messy (Ruby etc.) and totally failed strategically in that LBJ quickly and effectively shut down avenues of investigation that could have led to conflict with Cuba and possibly world war 3, using the clear risk of that (e.g. the ‘little incident down in Mexico City’) to bring senior officials into co-operation with the cover up for entirely honourable reasons (and a fair bit of self preservation).

    My concern with that scenario is that there are a very large number of what would then be remarkable coincidences that just happened to play just right to thwart the plan and also coincidentally worked in favour of the group who benefited most from the assassination (LBJ, who could well have ended up in jail otherwise, and the hard-line cold warriors).

    The linking of LHO to the Soviet embassy, and Kostikov in particular, worked very well to provide evidence to support the need to shut down the investigation. If that was a co-incidence it is a remarkable one. I do wonder why LHO was linked to the Soviet embassy rather than just the Cuban consulate – provoking a war with the USSR was on a whole other scale than one with Cuba (although the later could well have led to the former, of course).

    I do very much still worry that the whole question of access to and exit from relevant buildings remains strong evidence that there was at least unwitting collaboration in placing LHO in the TBSD from October and arranging a convenient screen of boxes with the flooring work. There is also a need to arrange access and exit for a third shooter in addition to one in the TBSD and one on the Knoll. (I am persuaded by D.B. Thomas’ argument on the acoustics – one of the technical areas of this I am pretty comfortable with in terms of being able to fully follow and assess the statistical and technical arguments).

    Examples of other details include the extremely rapid reaction of LBJs team on the 22nd November to close down conspiracy charges and Homer Thornberry’s move back to the judiciary just in the right place and at the right time to pick up the Nagell trial etc etc etc…

    All or some of these could be coincidences. For example, it may well be that LBJ reacted fast as politicians at that level are used to thinking through second and third order consequences and he could have been keeping his options open in stopping Dallas charging LHO with conspiracy. Overall though there are too many coincidences working too neatly for the people who most directly benefited for me to be comfortable in limiting it just to the tactical team around JM/WAVE at this stage although I accept that is a possible scenario.

    At the moment this is all just a working hypothesis. I need to try to find ways of testing it and hopefully simplifying things a bit. I would dearly love to be able to take LBJ out of this, for example. Even in European terms I would class as a liberal and could well have ended up in front of the HUAC if I’d been around at the time in the States! It gives me no pleasure to have such a suspicion of LBJ at all. It is perfectly possible that some individuals (e.g. people facilitating things in Dallas) could well have been unwitting and LBJ himself could well have been conned, but his reaction seems very quick.

    I shall try to watch the continuing developments in this field with a view to critically testing out the various possible scenarios. At the moment what I’m trying to get clear in my mind is the smallest number of individuals who actually could have done something like that in terms of information, authority and contacts as well as motive and predisposition. My suspicion of Angleton is not so much as the ultimate sponsor but as someone who seems to represent a focal point in terms of having sufficient knowledge, sufficient direct or nearly direct contacts, sufficient intellectual brilliance to conceive of such a double-cross, an emerging paranoia about senior political figures and who was also very closely linked into the community that benefited most from all of this. It is just a working hypothesis (following Newman basically on this element of it) and one I am trying to test, probe and see if it falls down. Thank you for helping me develop my thinking on this.

    • larryjoe2 says:

      It’s a great conversation so let me see what more I can offer.

      In regard to coincidences and benefits, I’m afraid that can lead into the same open ended exploration that comes from looking for motive. The simple reality is that JFK, as a pragmatist and inherently a foe of established practices, was an irritant to many and a threat to several individuals and factions. If you look for who wanted him out of the presidency (or dead) as well as who hated RFK’s influence you end up with the broad range of suspects, all of whom could be said to benefit.

      Something of the same applies to Oswald as a diversion, as early as his New Orleans stint the implications of his Russian background were clear. He was literally dominating his radio appearance until Russia was introduced – combining Russia, Communism and Cuba made him the perfect tool for directing anything he was involved with, willingly or unknowingly.

      We all focus on Mexico City but just think about the actual headlines on November 23, they touted his defection to Russia and his support for Castro. If he had never gone to Mexico the headlines would have been the same and so would the public impact. For that matter so would the exposure for the FBI and the CIA for their contacts with him…especially to the FBI’s contacts.

      I understand your points about the TSBD but I have to reiterate that it was essentially a target of opportunity, perhaps he was manipulated into that job but the vacancy was real not artificial. We really have no idea what the options may have been…and its important to recall that something involving Oswald in the Washington area in September was very real for a time. The TSBD is important for what happened but it may not tell us all that much about the overall conspiracy.

      As to the cover up, I can only offer the details I present in SWHT/2010 in which it clearly can be seen to be a piecemeal, iterative process and not a very good one given the huge number of loose ends that became visible over time and that we still discuss continually…grin. Both LBJ and the national security system itself are pretty apt at responding quickly in turns of suppressing potentially explosive information, we see it again and again. That is one of the reasons I researched and wrote Surprise Attack. Before that work I had assumed what we saw on November 23-24 was something unique, as it turns out its pretty much standard practice in national crises.

      The idea of trying to build the minimal scenario is one I pursue myself, however in that regard it’s very important to look at Jack Ruby and his evolving role with the conspiracy, which ranged from minimal to something entirely different within the course of a few hours. For me that shows the other aspect of the conspiracy and is far more revealing about who had to do a true criminal cover-up.

      The same can be said for Roselli and de Torres sabotage of the still secret Garrison investigation in the winter of 67/68. That provides a much better view of who would have been exposed in any true criminal investigation.

      Finally, as to Angleton, I do see him involved in a seminal fashion, however I think that in the end he was far enough from the actual plan and the attack itself that his remark about not knowing “who struck John” was probably true – but only in a literal sense.

  7. Anthony M says:

    You’ve given me a lot to think about and study, which I will go off an attempt to do…

    Agree Ruby is highly suggestive, particularly given his links to Chicago and the was Rosselli and Giancarna both were murdered at the time of the HSCA.

    It is amazing how many people the Kennedy brothers managed to upset, although it is not just about motive but also the means to put something like this together.

    You and others make a very persuasive case for a core group associated with JM/ WAVE. A lot of the early stories around LHO and Cuba seem to tie back to assets linked to Attlee-Phillips and seem curiously easily discredited. The Kostkov thing is different in that it was very definitely not public and very powerful evidence of the need to contain the situation for those with access to that information.
    If there was anyone above the Morales – Robertson -Atllee-Philips group they needed to be able to set things up in a way that effectively double crossed the anti-Castro Cubans in a way that wasn’t so obvious it would get them killed too.
    Agree all of this is to a greater or lesser extent speculative…will keep looking for harder evidence, which is probably about as far as we can go on that at the moment

    Thanks

    • larryjoe2 says:

      Hard evidence, in a criminal case sense, seems virtually out of reach. The weapons are gone, the crime scene vanished with the alteration of the limo and the official evidence ranging from bullets and fragments to the autopsy materials remains clearly questionable. Circumstantial evidence in regard to possible participants we have – in the form of secondary reports from the friends and family of some of those involved (in some instances corroborated by verifiable information such as travel to Dallas).

      Beyond that, I think we have sufficient factual evidence to verify certain points. The microstudy of Ruby’s evolving behavior that I present in SWHT/2010 addresses the 48 hours surrounding the assassination and exposes his role and who was in charge of changing it from something minor to something unplanned and major.

      There is now literally no doubt that unknown Cuban exiles approached Oswald in New Orleans and that he was recruited for some action in the Washington DC area (his own letters prove that) while his plans for personally relocating there (unknown to Marina) abruptly changed by the end of September. Unfortunately the only written documentation which might have revealed something similar about Oswald during his last weeks in Dallas disappeared with Hosty’s note destruction.

      Unfortunately neither Ruby nor Oswald will tell us anything about the particulars of the attack itself – other than the fact that the dramatic changes in behavior of both over a short period of time illustrate a peripheral and most likely unknowing role for both in the murder of the president.

      What we can and are doing is developing a circumstantial “scenario” for the tactical side of the conspiracy, the challenge is to validate it with as many actual pieces of verifiable information as possible. Then everyone can decide for themselves whether to accept it or not. The reality is that even if any of the named individuals involved went on record, in say a signed transcript as Roy Hargraves did, it would make little difference in regard to “hard evidence”.

      I’m afraid its about fifty years too late for that – when John Roselli contacted the FBI, Secret Service, Earl Warren and LBJ in 1968 and offered to provide concrete evidence of a conspiracy he was officially ignored by one and all – making it clear that the time for official recognition of hard evidence had already passed.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Yes, I was thinking more of the detailed analysis of documentation than forensic evidence…thought of that as being hard evidence but possibly wrong terminology on my part.
    Only wish I had the capacity to actually help!

    Hope you enjoy the Christmas and New Year break.

    • larryjoe2 says:

      Thanks for the good wishes, much appreciated! At this point in time I’d say that the official documentation from the DPD and government investigations has produced pretty much all that it can…which is largely an illustration of failed criminal investigation protocols, broken chains of evidence and intentional obfuscation. Whether or not we can use peripheral documentation such as that in Secret Service, FBI and CIA files to take us further is a question most definitely still being pursued. I believe it may give us a credible threat scenario and some further insights into the timeline and origins of the conspiracy but beyond that…? Still, if we could accomplish that it would give some sense of an end game to decades of research by hundreds if not thousands of people.

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