Monday, March 12, 2012
Beyond Dallas: C.I.A., Castro, JFK & The Rex!
I have been reading about the JFK Assassination ever since my grandmother gave me her LOOK magazine issues that included excerpts of William Manchester's "Death of A President" in 1967.
Ever since, with every new revelation I couldn't help but notice the JFK Assassination was like peeling an onion. Just when you thought you knew all the latest and revealing information, another layer was peeled and new insights were gained. And just like peeling an onion, tears of sadness emerge.
I am not the first person to use the onion peeling analogy to describe the JFK Assassination. Bill Kelly has claimed researcher John Judge was the first person he was aware used the analogy. So full disclosure upfront that I am not the first person to claim such a descriptor.
Also, my assassination interest has been peaked recently by reading Bill Kelly's blog, www.jfkcountercoup.blogspot.com. Kelly is a bona fide researcher who has been a leading proponent for open access to the millions of government files on the JFK Assassination currently under seal.
It was after reading one of Kelly's posts on a small but important piece of the JFK jigsaw puzzle that revealed the most recent layer of the onion being exposed. This is where this new story picks up and as Paul Harvey used to say, "And now, for the rest of the story."
The Mysterious Rex
Anyone who has spent any time at all researching the JFK Assassination quickly learns that the real truth behind the assassination goes through Cuba.
Not that Fidel Castro had anything to do with JFK's death but the origins of his assassination began with Castro's ascent to power in 1959 with his revolution in Havana. No sooner had Castro and his rebels come down from the mountains to liberate Havana did he turn red. Communist red. Whether a political ploy to play off the United States or because he was really a Communist, the savvy Castro successfully pitted the Soviet Union against the United States.
His efforts nearly took us into World War III and nuclear annihilation in 1962 during the Cuban Missile Crisis. However, calmer heads prevailed and thanks to JFK's calm strength, the situation was resolved peacefully. And of course, the seeds of Castro's animosity against the U.S. originated a year earlier in the ill-fated Bay of Pigs invasion in April of 1961. An anti-Castro Cuban brigade force of C.I.A.-trained rebels were repelled by Castro's forces. Many died and 1,200 were held until 1962 in Cuban prisons while Castro used them for propaganda and negotiating power.
The names of the individuals responsible for shooting President Kennedy, Governor Connally and bystander James Teague are long gone. However, the origins of the assassination and remnants of the cover up still exist. Thankfully all of the early groundwork by the pioneers in the 1960's, followed up by the congressional investigative panels of the 1970's, Oliver Stone's controversial but compelling JFK movie in 1992 and most recently revelations by the Assassinations Review Board and release of the top secret Air Force One tapes have all further revealed the level of conspiracy involved.
The Rex set sail from Palm Beach harbor on October 21, 1963. According to the website CUBAN ARMS, www.urrib200.narod.ru, the Rex later attacked San Antonio Cape in the Pinar del Rio Province on Cuba's northern shore. However, Castro's G-2 had already tipped off his forces and they were ready once again for the Cuban crew of anti-Castro rebels. Quickly under fire by Cuban forces the Rex headed straight for the shoreline to avoid a quick counter attack by four Soviet MIG-15's. However, the Cuban pilots and Russian advisors were confused and attacked the G. Louis, a ship registered in Liberia carrying minerals from Jamaica to Texas. The Rex escaped thru the darkness to Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula and although the Soviet MIG's eventually found the Rex and attacked it, they were short on fuel and returned to the safety of Cuban bases.
Coincidentally, to show the dangerous consequences of such a daring attack, the G.Louis had radioed the attack by the Cuban MIG-15's which was picked up by U.S. forces in Key West, Florida. The United States quickly sent four U.S. Navy Phantom fighters from Florida to intercept the MIG-15's. However, they were quickly recalled avoiding a potential fight with the Soviet Union.
This high-seas Cold War espionage might have never seen the light of day, as did thousands of other similar excursions, if not for Fidel Castro's 3-hour televised newscast on October 30. Apparently trying to exploit the situation for mass propaganda, Castro took to the Cuban airwaves and told the world about the Rex attack, his courageous fighters repelling of the invasion and most explosively he said he had captured four crewmen from the Rex and had them in custody. Worse for the United States and the Kennedy Administration, Castro said the captured crewman were singing like canaries and had implicated the C.I.A. as responsible for their operations and said they launched from Palm Beach harbor in Florida.
You don't have to be student of the Cold War to realize the significance of this revelation. Neither did The New York Times. Because on November 1, 1963 The New York Times published an article complete with a photograph of the Rex in their newspaper. It seems the Rex was not the innocent research vessel the United States government said it was. And, despite President Kennedys' public disavowing of attacks on Cuba he did secretly authorize such attacks but mandated that no Cuban invasion forces would launch from U.S. ports, the Rex seemingly didn't care and attacked Cuba from Palm Beach while the President was at his winter estate nearby.
Any casual observer looking at this situation would see that it was bad enough to have this ship launch an attack from U.S. ports against Cuba but incredibly the plotters launched the attack from the very port where President Kennedy was staying that weekend. Incredible.
You don't have to look far to see who would be so brash. Research has revealed that the Rex was actually flagged to Nicaragua and was purchased from a company owned by former Nicaraguan President Luis Somoza. The ship was a vintage 174-foot U.S. World War II submarine destroyer completely decked with a 57mm gun, a 40mm twin tube gun and 8 machine guns plus launch slips for two attack boats on deck. Apparently, when the Rex was photographed in Palm Beach harbor by The New York Times for their article the two slips on board were empty. Castro claimed he had both boats with The Rex identification painted on the side. Further research revealed that the owner of the Rex was J.A. Belcher, a Miami oilman. Belcher told the Miami Herald he leased the Rex for oceanographic research to the international division of Collins Radio Company of Dallas, Texas. Apparently, Collins Radio was using the boat for sophisticated radio surveillance for marine technology not necessarily for spying on Cuba.
And this is where the story gets interesting. Collins Radio has a long history with U.S. defense contractors and Bill Kelly's blog has already covered Collins Radio and its military connections in depth. However, the conspiratorial winds pick up double knot when you understand the story Kelly tells on his blog about former Dallas Mayor Wes Wise and the assassination. Wise at the time was a sports reporter for a Dallas television station. A couple of weeks after the assassination Wise discovered the story of an eyewitness who had identified a man as Lee Harvey Oswald, minutes after Dallas Police Officer JD Tippit was murdered, he had seen sitting in a car 5 blocks from the Tippit murder scene. The eyewitness, T.F. White, noticed the man from across the street at the garage he worked and approached the car. He got close enough to the car to jot down the license plate and saw the man's face clearly enough to identify Oswald later that night when he saw him on television. It just happened that a check of the license plate revealed that the car was registered to a Collins Radio employee named Carl Mather. The fact that Mather was also friends with Officer Tippit adds futher fuel to the conspiratorial fire. The fact that Mather also had top secret security clearance and worked on installing the complex communications system in Air Force Two, the Vice Presidential plane, sets the conspiratorial fire ablaze.
So follow along with this one if you care to:
The Rex, a ship that attacked Cuba from Palm Beach, Florida on October 30, 1963 when President Kennedy just happened to be staying in Palm Beach, makes international headlines when Castro announces on live television that he has not only repelled the attack but captured survivors who claim they are part of a C.I.A. led invasion of Cuba. The Rex just happens to be owned by a Miami man who says he leased the ship to Collins Radio for scientific purposes but it is learned that the real owner is the C.I.A. Further, an employee of Collins Radio just happens to have his car seen by an eye witness five blocks from the Tippit murder scene minutes afterwards. The man wrote down the license tag after a man who looked suspicious sitting in the car saw him and quickly drove away. The eye witness later identified the man in the car as the Presidential assassin Lee Harvey Oswald. And, a check of the license plate revealed the man whose name the car was registered to just happened to be good friends with officer Tippit, the murdered Dallas police officer that Warren Commission attorney David Belin claimed was the "Rosetta Stone" of the JFK Assassination.
Conspiratorial or coincidental? You decide. But one thing for sure. The Rex is just another layer in the onion that when peeled away gets awfully close to the real conspirators in the JFK Assassination.
Because what you have in play here is a top secret covert operation aimed against Castro's Cuba by a C.I.A.-led group of anti-Castro Cuban rebels with ties to Collins Radio a defense contractor in Richardson, Texas. As mentioned, it just happens that a Collins Radio employee was linked to the murder of JD Tippit by the presence of his car five blocks from the Tippit murder scene which was seen by an eye-witness who just happened to identify the driver as accused Presidential assassin Lee Harvey Oswald.
Still not convinced? The eyewitness to the Oswald-looking driver of Carl Mather's 1957 Oldsmobile claimed he made his discovery at 2 p.m. What's the problem? The real Lee Harvey Oswald was arrested at the Texas Theatre at 1:45 p.m. for the murder of Officer JD Tippit and was sitting in the Dallas City Jail at 2 p.m.
The case of the mysterious Rex certainly doesn't spell out conspiracy in the JFK assassination anymore than the volumes of other Oswald sightings throughout the Dallas area prior to the assassination or the evidence linking Jack Ruby to organized crime or the evidence of a government whitewash in the official investigation called the Warren Commission.
However, each instance is just another layer of the onion that when peeled back reveals the true seeds of conspiracy and cover up that prevented the American public from the real truth behind JFK's death nearly 49 years ago.
Seeds of Conspiracy Confirmed
A ton of conspiratorial data has been revealed the past 48 years since the JFK Assassination. And while the case of the mysterious Rex is certainly eye-opening and compelling proof of a deeper involvment of conspiracy than ever before, there are other more significant examples of the depths of the seeds of conspiracy.
Here are 5 solid leads developed over the years that expose the case for conspiracy in the JFK Assassination all with ties back to Cuba:
1. Plan for a Coup in Cuba--Lamar Waldron's 2005 book "Ultimate Sacrifice: John and Robert Kennedy, the Plan for a Coup in Cuba, and the Murder of JFK," skillfully reveals a previously unknown top-secret plan for a coup in Cuba authorized by JFK and run by his brother Bobby. The C.I.A.'s code name for their supporting role in the coup, AMWORLD, had never previously been exposed publicly before Waldron's book. Waldron implicates top Mafia associates of Santos Trafficante, Carlos Marcello and Sam Giancana of learning of the coup plan and using that knowledge to plan the assassination of JFK in Dallas with elements of the real coup planners: Anti-Castro Cubans and Mob hit men. Such knowledge gave the Mob cover for the assassination knowing the real coup planners would not want their operation revealed.
2. "Legacy of Secrecy: The Long Shadow of the JFK Assassination," Waldrons' follow up in 2008 to his first book, further details the aftermath of the assassination that spawned a top-secret government cover up. Waldron outlines how President Lyndon Johnson, Robert Kennedy and former C.I.A. Director Richard Helms led a cover up of the real assassins to hide the fact that the United States was on the brink of invading Cuba as part of a JFK-authorized coup only 10 days away. The plan's exposure could have cost the life of the coup leader, Cuban Army Commander Juan Almeida, and led to a nuclear confrontation with the Soviets, just one year after the Cuban Missile Crisis. In fact, one does not have to look any further than President Johnson himself for evidence of the plausibility of such a cover up. Because it was the threat of nuclear annihilation with the Soviet Union that LBJ used to convince Supreme Court Justice Earl Warren to lead the ultimate government cover up: The Warren Commission. This information has come out from LBJ's own White House tapes that have been released.
3. Oswald and Cuba. Numerous researchers have uncovered Lee Harvey Oswald's travels to Mexico City in the fall of 1963 just weeks before JFK's assassination. It has been documented and verified by government files that Oswald visited both the Cuban and Soviet embassies while in Mexico City. However, more incriminating than the visits are documents that show that top-secret C.I.A. surveillance of both embassies revealed photos of Oswald and voice recordings of Oswald's conversations were of another man not Lee Harvey Oswald. Top-secret, declassified transcripts of Oval Office phone recordings show that both President Johnson and F.B.I. Director J. Edgar Hoover discussed these surreptitious tapes and photos in the days following the assassination and the consequences if knowledge of an imposter impersonating Lee Harvey Oswald in Mexico City became known to the American people. As documented by the website maryferrell.org, one such phone conversation occurred at 10 a.m. on November 23, 1963, the day after the assassination. Although the actual tapes have vanished, transcripts of the call survived. In response to Johnson's question about "the visit to the Soviet Embassy in September," Hoover replied:
"No, that's one angle that's very confusing, for this reason--we have up here the tape and the photograph of the man who was at the Soviet embassy, using Oswald's name. That picture and the tape do not correspond to this man's voice, nor to his appearance. In other words, it appears that there is a second person who was at the Soviet embasy down there."
Instead of a massive investigation into the mysterious Oswald imposter, LBJ and Hoover hid the evidence. They both decided to cover up these highly sensitive and incriminating pieces of evidence. Because if someone was impersonating the accused Presidential assassin in the weeks prior to the assassination in Mexico City, that has definite signs of a conspiracy.
4. Castro Foreknowledge. Even if the Warren Commission never knew about them, it is now well known that the C.I.A. was very active in their covert operations against Cuba including assassination efforts against Fidel Castro. Even after the ill-fated Bay of Pigs invasion, the C.I.A. was deeply involved in attacks on Cuba and plots to assassinate Fidel Castro and overthrow his government. The fact that Castro himself was aware of these plots adds further fuel to the conspiratorial fire. In fact, just this week a new book, "Castro's Secrets: The C.I.A. and Cuba's Intelligence Machine," by former C.I.A. National Intelligence Officer for Latin America, Brian Lattell, reveals the extent of Castro's foreknowledge.
In his book, Lattell claims that Oswald became frustrated after Cuban officials denied his attempts to travel there and told Cuban Intelligence officials he would kill Kennedy to prove his allegiance to Castro and the Communists. Said Lattell, "Fidel knew of Oswald's intentions and did nothing to deter the act." Many conspiracy theorists believe that Castro simply retaliated against JFK with some of these same assets before JFK could get him. Or, did Castro know what the C.I.A., LBJ and J.Edgar Hoover already knew the day after the assassination: the Oswald telling his embassy of his Kennedy-killing intentions was actually an imposter in a conspiracy laying a pre-assassination legend trying to implicate Castro into the assassination aftermath as a tipping point to a U.S. invasion in retaliation?
5. The Rex. And if you need any further evidence of C.I.A. culpability in the JFK Assassination and the Cuban angle, you need look no further than the mysterious Rex. Research has revealed that the Rex was the lead ship in the Navy of a top-secret C.I.A. base JM/WAVE located in Miami. In fact, JM/WAVE operated the third largest navy in the Caribbean behind the United States and Cuba.
Ostensibly a research facility that was an extension of the University of Miami, JM/WAVE was the headquarters of all Cuban invasion planning and Castro-assassination tactics. In his book "The Castro Obsession," Don Bohning wrote that JM/WAVE became the largest C.I.A. operation aside from its headquarters in Langley, Virginia. Bohning reported that JM/WAVE had 400 agents and 300 to 400 front companies throughout the Miami area. The JM/WAVE headquarters themselves had a front company called Zenith Technological Enterprises, Inc. Further, JM/WAVE operations trained over 15,000 Cuban exiles for an eventual invasion of Cuba.
It was at JM/WAVE that OPERATION MONGOOSE, a mission aimed at training Cuban exiles to overthrow Fidel Castro was hatched. The operation was a response and second attempt at the failed Bay of Pigs invasion by Brigade 2506.
According to former Brigade member Maximo Cruz,
"We were to attack certain parts of Cuba and continue the attack until we took over Cuba."
Although technically not a full-fledged invasion like the Bay of Pigs, Operation Mongoose instead focused on sabotage and propaganda.
Many of the C.I.A. personnel who ran JM/WAVE consistently pop up in JFK Assassination books. Men such as Felix Rodriguez, David Morales and Ted Shackley.
The seeds of conspiracy have roots in the JM/WAVE base in Miami because of the Rex's mission of October 21, 1963. Because if the Rex was operating covertly by attacking Cuba with the hopes of landing a team of assassins on the island to assassinate Fidel Castro and Castro was aware of the impending attack, then anything is possible. The fact that the Rex was leased to a C.I.A. front company in Richardson, Texas named Collins Radio adds further conspiratorial fuel into the fire. Add the Carl Mather story to this angle and the C.I.A. involvement in the JFK Assassination cover up is unmistaken.
This piece by no means covers all the C.I.A./Cuban angles of conspiracy in the JFK Assassination.
Bill Kelly has uncovered many more instances of coverup and conspiracy in his blog JFKCountercoup.blogspot.com.
However, as the case of the mysterious Rex illustrates, many things are not what they appear on the surface in the JFK Assassination.
As William W. Turner, former F.B.I. Agent and the author of "Deadly Secrets," stated in the foreword to "Ultimate Sacrifice":
"At last, the mysteries surrounding JFK's death are fully explained by the startling revelations in this book. Its fresh, groundbreaking research documents how the blow-back from the Kennedy's actions against the Mafia and Cuba led to the death of JFK. Ultimate Sacrifice provides the final work on why the government had to cover up so much information for so long."
Another layer of the onion revealed, indeed.