Friday, March 30, 2018

The Babes of Dealey Plaza


Whose Sleeping With Whom at the Dealey Plaza Motel


Last week, when the Archivist had to give his recomendations to the President as to what JFK assassination records should remain withheld past the April 26 2018 deadline, the NARA had no comment and all the White House Press Corps wanted to talk about was Stormy Daniels. 

Since sex sells, and is often a key determiner as to who is connected to whom in a network web, sex is a key link that if positively established, seals a known relationship and connection.

If Playboy Magazine would run a photo feature on this it would be called The Babes of Dealey Plaza.

Of the key paramours of Dealey Plaza, who somehow got entangled in the JFK assassination story, more than a few stand out and in fact, come into play in the overall narrative as pretty significant relationships.

For starters, was Clare Booth Luce?


Apparently she was because when Old Man Joe Kennedy was the US Ambassador to the Court of St. James at the beginning of World War II, his primary paramour was Claire Booth Luce, the wife of Henry Luce, publisher of Time-Life. She was there, right in the thick of things when JFK’s father sided with Nevell Chamberlain in his appeasement of Hitler at Munich, in a last ditch effort to keep the United States out of the war in Europe.

Luce went on to become entangled in the JFK assassination story by co-sponsoring, with the CIA, an anti-Castro Cuban commando team run by the CIA out of their Florida JMWAVE station. Luce’s “boys,” as she called them, were featured in a Life Magazine article she wrote about them, and their team leader, Julio Fernandez, called Luce on the night of the assassination to tell her he had a tape recording of the accused assassin Lee Harvey Oswald and other evidence of his support of Fidel Castro.

At the same time his dad was cavorting with Clare Booth Luce, JFK was working in Washington in the Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI) until it became known that his girlfriend at the time, Danish model Ingrid Avid, had accompanied Hitler to the Berlin Olympics and was on good terms with other top Nazi officials and was considered a spy for them. Kennedy was then reassigned from ONI to a desk job at Charleston, South Carolina, where he continued to communicate with Avid, phone conversations picked up by the FBI, and it was only when J. E. Hoover threatned him did JFK break off his relationship with Avid.

While he was President Kennedy had a few affairs, not only with White House secretaries, but mob moll Judyth Cambell, and a Ellen Rometsch, the wife of a German army officer whose affairs with English politicians caused a scandal that took down some politicians because she was a Soviet spy.

ELLEN ROMETSCH before she lets her hair down.

LBJ’s pal Bobby Baker, who hooked JFK up with Rometsch, a waitress at Baker’s Quorum Club, was later quoted by Politico as saying, “She really loved oral sex…She went to the White House several times and President Kennedy called me and said it’s the best head-job he’d ever had, and he thanked me.”

It's a head job all right.

President Kennedy was concerned enough that he would become publicly embroiled in the affair that he asked his Ambassador to England former OSS officer David Bruce, to keep him appraised of the news of the scandal in Britain. Rometsch also reportedly had an affair, arranged by Baker, with Rep. Gerald Ford, who served on the Warren Commission and authorized the Rockefeller Commission to investigate CIA activities.

Then there’s Judyth Campbell, who married golf pro Dan Exner, and was the key intermediary in the Frank Sinatra – John Rosselli – Sam Giancana trio and President Kennedy.


Campbell, a startling brunette with a classy style, first dated Sinatra but knew Rosselli and Giancana and became Giancanna’s girlfriend at the same time she was bedding President JFK, primarily at his New York City hotel apartment when Jackie was out of town. She delivered sealed envelopes between JFK and Giancana – who was instrumental in winning West Virginia and Illinois for JFK in the primaries and the election. Kennedy only broke off the relationship when Sinatra fell out of favor and J. E. Hoover warned him that the affair would go public if it didn’t end.

Campbell comes into the assassination story in other ways as well, as an FBI report of a stakeout of her Las Vegas apartment says that they saw it broken into by two young men, Robert and William Hale. In fact they were twins, as their car was traced to their father, former FBI agent Insall Bailey “I.B.” Hale – then working for Dallas defense contractor General Dynamics. The boys weren’t arrested or even questioned about the break in, as their father got them off the hook. They later got into even more trouble though – as one of them acidently killed a daughter of John Connally (I couldn’t make this stuff up).

Then comes the clincher – their mother Virginia Kingsbery Hale – worked at the Texas Employment Commission – and was involved in helping Oswald obtain jobs at the welding company and Jaggers-Chiles-Stoval graphics arts firm, where he allegedly forged the fake Alex Hidel ID and documents.

In April 1961, while Oswald was in Russia, Guy Bannister’s crew of misfits was sent to Houma, Louisiana to retrieve some weapons, ammo and dynamite that was stored in bunker owned by the Schlumberger, a French company directed by Jean DeMenil, one of the White Russians who would take Oswald under their wing when he returned from the Soviet Union. Among those who went on this mission were David Ferrie, Layton Martins, Luis Rabel Nunes - a Cuban who borrowed a laundry truck from the Catholic Welfare Society, Gordon Novel and his wife Marlene Mancuso - who takes their wife with them on a mission? 

Joan Mellen knew Marlene Mancuso, as she writes: "Another of my favorite witnesses was Marlene Mancuso, former wife of Gordon Novel who had infiltrated Garrison’s investigation at the request of Walter Sheridan, Bobby Kennedy’s right hand man. Mancuso told Jim Garrison how Sheridan, under cover as a journalist for NBC, had attempted to bribe her with a job in Los Angeles if only she would lie to Garrison. Sheridan had gone to New Orleans to 'scuttle' Jim Garrison’s investigation. He was one of many.

“'I told Mr. Garrison that I wasn’t going along with any of that,' Marlene told me, as she described the affidavit she signed against Sheridan. Given Sheridan’s connections to Bobby Kennedy and to Herbert J. Miller, Jr., Sheridan wasn’t going to jail, just as he wasn’t going to face charges for bribing witnesses in the Hoffa trial in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Marlene came forward because it was the right thing to do. When I went up to a nursing home in East Feliciana Parish, tracking down Gladys Palmer, whom several witnesses had observed in Oswald’s company during the summer of 1963, Gladys Palmer and Gloria Wilson, Marlene went with me. Gladys’ Ragland sister felt more comfortable talking with someone who was native to Louisiana."

This all deserves mention because Gordon Novel’s wife. Marlene Mancuso, was a real babe, a Miss America beauty pageant contestant – Miss New Orleans, but she didn’t make it to Atlantic City. Her family however, is said to be related to the Mancuso’s Restaurant in the same building that housed Bannister’s office and Oswald’s Fair Play for Cuba Committee, and where Bannister’s bozo crew hanged out when they weren't on a mission.

Bonus points and a feather in your cap for anyone who can come up with a photo of Marlene Mancuso.

And we have a Winner! Gary Shaw gets bonus points and a feather for his cap by providing a nice photo of Miss New Orlenes Marlene Mancuso, that I will post ASAP.

And it wouldn't be a covert crew on a mission without a guy like Andrew Blackmon, an Oswaldian character – ex-USMC who dry fired his Mauser rifle and, on the way back to Bannister’s office with the arms, threw let dynamite from the truck, thinking that was funny. These bozos could not have pulled off the Dealey Plaza operation - a clean, well planned and executed and successful mission, though they somehow got entangled in it. But Blackmon was also good pals with the Air Force Colonel who ran the Silver Dollar emergency communications and command plane that was over Dealey Plaza at the time of the assassination. 

Then there’s Lee and Marina – Lee Oswald and his Russian wife Marina. Before Marina Oswald dated – the daughter of his Minsk factory foreman, a Russian Jew who immigrated to Russia from South America, where he had previously worked for an American corporation.

Marina raised by her uncle, a MDV – military officer, was familiar with another American defector Robert Webster, and Marina is described in the files recently released under the JFK Act as being a “Swallow,” as in the bird, intelligence lingo for a women who uses her natural attributes to obtain otherwise hard to acquire information, though she has denied it.

Besides Marina, there’s Sylvia Odio and Sylvia Duran, both of whom had intimate relations with key players in the JFK assassination story. In Odio’s case she was intimate with the young and handsome Catholic Priest Father Walter Machann, the patron of the Dallas Cuban community in exile. The good father, who shared the stage with John Martino when Martino was promoting his book, “I was Castro’s Prisoner.” Martino was in on the Bayo-Pawley mission, and expressed foreknowledge of the assassination. Father McChann also played around with other young, impressionable parishioners, including Maryanne Sullivan, whose book Kennedy Ripples was best described as the “Harlequin Romance,” version of the assassination.

Since Sylvia Odio had confessed to Father McChann that two Cubans and Oswald had visited her apartment, and talked about killing the President, after the assassination the Secret Service had Father McChann (then hiding out at a Seminary in New Orleans) call Sylvia Odio on the phone and ask her to identify the two Cubans while a Secret Service agent listened in. [The SS agent said she identified one of the Cubans as Eugenio Cisneros, but later recanted that ID]

Then there is Sylvia Duran, the Mexican national who worked at the Cuban Embassy in Mexico City, who Oswald dealt with when he asked her for a visa to Cuba, enroute to Russia.

After the assassination it was alleged by Viola June Cobb – another Swallow – this time a CIA one, that Oswald had an affair with Duran and she introduced him to Cuban embassy officials who encouraged him to kill JFK. 

You can read more about June Cobb and her entanglements with the CIA and Castro in John Newman's new series of books on the JFK Assassination - Where Angels Tread Ligtly and especially Countdown to Darkness.

CIA Agent June Cobb 

Among other intrigues, Cobb alleged that the accused assassin LHO attended a twist party hosted by Sylvia Duran that included an American film actor and Cuban embassy personnel - who could have encouraged Oswald to kill the President, as former New York Times reporter Phil Shennon would have you believe.

While Duran herself publicly says that she never met Oswald outside of the Embassy, others who know her say that besides the twist party, Duran privately confessed that she was intimate with Oswald, met him for lunch at Sanborns Restaurant, a place Oswald was known to frequent, and she took Oswald to a very fancy restaurant where he personally met the Cuban Ambassador to Cuba, who encouraged him to kill Kennedy. 

Of course these are all extensions of the black propaganda operation, a very distinct disinformation campaign to frame Oswald and blame the assassination conspiracy on Castro, an aspect of the Dealey Plaza operation that fail and has been exposed, giving us some insight into the intelligence network that was behind the murder. 

It was also alleged that during her violent interrogation by Mexican police Duran admitted she had a sexual affair with Oswald, but she has denied that to journalists who have questioned her.

It is unlikely she had an affair with Oswald but it is possible she was intimate with the American film actor who is said to have attended one of her twist parties, Richard Beymer, the star of the movie West Side Story where he played opposite Natalie Wood.

While Beymer recently acknowledged being in Mexico at the time, attending a film festival and trying to get a visa to Cuba, he doesn’t recall a twist party, - though that is something he would have done. Nor did he recall Sylvia Duran, who he dealt with at the Cuban embassy in his quest, ala Oswald, in getting a visa to Cuba.

In her interviews with reporters – Anthony Summers – Phil Shennon and others, she denied seeing Oswald outside the embassy but acknowledge hosting twist parties, and that at the one Oswald was alleged to have attended, there was an American film actor present, but she refused to name him because he was still alive and she didn’t want to get him involved. So she tried to protect him.

But CIA records recently released under the JFK Act say that the American film actor Richard Beymer requested a visa to Cuba, and CIA wiretaps picked up his phone conversations with Duran.

While Duran tried to protect Beymer, and he failed to recall her by name, CIA documents released in the last batch of records in 2017, indicate that Beymer did know Syliva Duran by name, because after the assassination, while he was still in Mexico City, he called the Cuban embassy, asked for her by name, and asked if she was all right, apparently knowing she was taken into custody by the Mexican police and violently interrogated.

It may be of no significance at all if Duran and Beymer had a twist at a twist party, that may be personal information that has no bearing on the story, except for the fact that Duran tried to protect Beymer from getting involved in all this assassination stuff, and Beymer denied recalling her name at all, when in fact, as another record anayst put it – “he lied.”

Was she trying to protect him and did he deny knowing her personally because of their possible trist, or something more? 

Some of the relationships are key to really understanding the assassination. Like to you think it was just a coincidence that Oswald was sent to request a visa to Cuba from Duran? Or was it a set up? I ask this because, Syliva Duran definitely had an affair of significance with Carlos Lechuga, the former Cuban Ambassador to Mexico who went on to New York to serve as the chief middle-man in the top secret JFK-Castro back channel communications that were in progress at the time of the assassination.

Of all the sparrows in this nest and network, Mary Bancroft is the key link to everything.

While Wiki isn’t a normally a source worth citing, this from Wiki says it all, though they don’t bother to tell you that Ruth Forbes Paine (Young), Mary Bancroft’s best friend and traveling companion, is the mother of Michael Paine, the accused assassin’s chief benefactor.

According to Wiki: Mary Bancroft (October 29, 1903, Boston – January 10, 1997, New York City was an American novelist and spy and a member of the Bancroft family, which at one time owned Dow Jones & Company. In 1942, while living in Switzerland, Bancroft was recruited by the Office of Strategic Services, and both worked and had a romantic relationship with Allen Dulles. Her most important work was with Hans Bernd Gisevius, a German military intelligence officer who supplied her with details of the 20 July plot to assassinate Hitler. After the war, Bancroft settled in New York and became a novelist.

Born in Boston and brought up there by her stepgrandfather Clarence W. Barron, Bancroft studied at Smith College in Massachusetts, but dropped out after a year.

During 1926-1932, Mary Bancroft resided in New York City, New York and spent some of that time attending socials at the apartment of her friend from Massachusetts, Ruth Forbes Paine, and Paine's husband, George Lyman Paine Jr. After divorcing her first husband Sherwin Badger she went on a boat trip to Europe in summer 1933 together with her still married - but now separated - friend, Ruth Forbes Paine known more simply as Ruth Paine, where she met a Swiss accountant, Jean Rufenacht, who became her second husband. She moved to Zurich, Switzerland in 1934, where she learned excellent French and German, and became a close friend and student of Carl Jung, who cured her of chronic attacks of sneezing.

Following the US entry into World War II, Bancroft was recruited by the Office of Strategic Services, although she was not initially aware of the fact, being asked by a US Embassy contact to write analyses of German policy based on German public sources for Swiss and American newspapers.She was then introduced to (Allen) Dulles in Zurich in December 1942 and went on to have a romantic relationship with him, based on Dulles' proposition that "We can let the work cover the romance, and the romance cover the work." Dulles assigned Bancroft to work with Hans Bernd Gisevius, a German military intelligence officer who supplied her with details of the planned 20 July plot to assassinate Hitler; Bancroft soon developed a romantic relationship with Gisevius too.  After the war, with her relationship with Dulles cooling, Bancroft became close friends with Dulles' wife Clover, who told her she was aware of their relationship and approved. She remained close friends with Clover until the latter's death in 1974.

After the war Bancroft settled in New York and became close friends with Henry Luce….(End Wiki)

Ah, yes, Henry Luce, the publisher of Time-Life whose wife fooled around with Old Man Joe in London and published Clare Booth Luce’s article about her anti-Castro Cuban “boys” who ran commando missions to Cuba, attacked Russian ships in the Havana harbor and had a tape recording of the accused assassin on the night of the assassination. Oh yea, he’s the guy who bought the Zapruder film and suppressed it for a decade.

Bancroft also admitted to bedding Gisevious, the German Gestapo officer who she helped escape from Germany after the failure of the July 20, 1944 Valkyrie plot to kill Hitler, which the CIA "studied in detail" to develop a similar plan to use against Castro. 

And it isn’t just the assassination of President Kennedy that these events are entangled with. In her book “Autobiography of a Spy,” Bancroft notes that her first husband worked for United Fruit and they spent a year in Batista’s Cuba, that set the stage for the United Fruit in Guatemala to seek U.S. intervention in Operation Success in 1958. 

And according to Bancroft, her stepgrandfather Hugh Bancroft, publisher of the Wall Street Journal, expressed foreknowledge of the sudden death of President Warren G. Harding, who it is believed, was poisoned in the dining car of a train.

In any case, the intimate relations exhibited by the players in this drama say a lot for understanding the big picture, as we try to put it all together.

And if it is sex that sells the news, then these interlocking relationships should be of interest to more than those who read Playboy or the National Enquirer, and we should pay more attention to the still sealed records that can fill in some of the blanks to these stories. 


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