Bill Kelly's 2021 CAPA Presentation on Gene Wheaton and Carl Jenkins
Bill Kelly’s 2021 CAPA Presentation on Gene Wheaton and Carl Jenkins Interviews with Matt Ehling, William M. Law and Lee Shephard.
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Hello, I’m Bill Kelly, Research Coordinator for CAPA – Citizens Against Political Assassination – Dr. Cyril Wecht is our chairman.
I’ve been trying to devise an alternative scenario for the assassination that’s believable, an alternative to the official version, and I think this is it.
A few years ago, Bill Turner, at a COPA conference, said that he knew how the assassination occurred, because they had already set up a mechanism to kill Castro and they just redirected that to JFK at Dealey Plaza. That’s the venue I have been trying to track down.
[Turner: “We now know what happened at Dealey Plaza to a fairly good degree of certainty. The motives were piling up – the Bay of Pigs, the Cuban Missile Crisis, Vietnam, the two-track back channel to Castro and Cuba – the motives were piling up to the point where they had to assassinate him. I think it’s now pretty obvious, with the information we have today, that the mechanism of it came out of the alliance between the CIA and the Mafia. They already had an assassination apparatus set up for killing Castro, and they just switched targets and killed JFK instead.” ]
Gene Wheaton affirms that position, and Carl Jenkins re-affirms it. I think Gene Wheaton is the most important whistle blower of all time, mainly because of his attempt to expose the Iran-Contra Affair, but also for his insights into the JFK assassination.
At first he tried to take his information on the Iran-Contra Affair to the CIA director, William Casey. Now who has the power and authority to walk into the office of the director of the CIA? Gene Wheaton had that power and authority. When he explained the details of the Iran-Contra Affair to Casey, he realized that Casey was in on it.
Wheaton explained that the whole Iran-Contra Affair was a program set up to raise millions of dollars to fund covert operations without the approval of Congress.
Wheaton then took what he knew to Christic Institute attorney Dan Sheehan, who was suing the Iran Contra principles. That didn’t come to much but he wrote a book about it, and Wheaton gets a footnote in those court papers and book.
At least Gene Wheaton tried to blow the whistle on the Iran Contra Affair.
When he heard that the JFK Act was passed by Congress in 1992, and the Assassination Records Review Board (ARRB) was established, he wrote a letter contacting Federal Judge John Tunheim, the director of the ARRB, establishing his bonafides as a legitimate military intelligence officer and tried to give him some of the leads we are now pursuing.
Tunheim passed that letter on to Anne Buttimer, an attorney for the Review Board. She talked to Wheaton on the phone and met him personally, and accepted documents he gave her that confirmed his story. She also wrote a memo on what Wheaton told her. Which was essentially that Carl Jenkins admitted to him (over the course of years they worked together) that he led a group of anti-Castro Cubans that were paid and trained by the CIA to kill Castro and they redirected that attack to Kennedy at Dealey Plaza. Exactly what Bill Turner had said years earlier.
In any case, Anne Buttimer subsequently resigned from the ARRB, and Tunheim and the Review Board never did any follow up on the leads Wheaton provided. That’s what we are doing now and I think this is very important what we are doing.
I learned from documents in the Archives (Thanks to Malcolm Blunt), about Carl Jenkins, one of the main names that Wheaton gives us. Wheaton worked with Jenkins at a CIA propriety airlines - National Air Cargo, and he lived with Jenkins for a few years at Jenkins’s house in Washington DC when they worked together.
Wheaton says that Jenkins maintained his friendship and association with some of the Cubans he had previously trained for the Bay of Pigs and at JMWAVE, including Felix Rodriguez, Chi Chi Quintaro, Nester Peno - he names a half dozen Cubans who were under Jenkins. He said they were still friendly decades later and after Dealey Plaza they stayed together and continued to work together on covert operations in the Congo, Middle East, Vietnam, and Nicaragua during the Iran Contra Affair in Central America.
Theses are the same people that Dan Sheehan and the Christic Institute investigation pointed out as part of the Iran-Contra affair. Note that these people were involved in other operations before and after Iran-Contra. Gene Wheaton was heavily involved in the Iran-Contra – mainly because of their interest in using the National Air Cargo airlines.
And we are lucky Matt Ehling had the opportunity to interview Wheaton a number of times for many hours, and although he doesn’t mention the assassination, he does touch on his association with Jenkins.
And William Matson Law, an assassination researcher, interviewed Wheaton briefly, but he focused strictly on the assassination and what Wheaton had to say about it.
Today, we will present a condensed version of Matt Ehling’s interviews with Wheaton, as well as William Maston Law’s recorded interview with Wheaton. And then we have Lee Shephard, who was lucky enough to talk himself into Carl Jenkin’s home and sit down and talk with him about his role in training the Cubans for the Bay of Pigs, as well as his role in other operations. In any case Lee actually sat down and talked with Jenkins, the number one person we are concerned with.
In the course of my review of the records on the assassination released under the JFK Act, I came across one document that mentions Jenkins. That is a National Photo Interpretation Center (NPIC) report, in which Dino Brugioni, then the head of the NPIC, says that during the Church Committee investigation, eight NPIC technicians came forward to say that they were aware of a CIA plot to kill Castro called Pathfinder.
[ NPIC Doc on Pathfinder and Carl Jenkins: https://www.maryferrell.org/
They knew of this because they provided the aerial photographs, blueprints, ground photos and maps of the area where the attack was to take place – the Dupont Xandau estate in Veradero, on the north shore of Cuba, that Castro was known to frequent.
They said the plan, led by Jenkins. was to have snipers shoot Castro in the head with high powered rifles as he rode by in an open jeep. Which is precisely the plan used at Dealey Plaza and the one I believe was redirected from Castro to Kennedy in Dallas.
Carl Jenkins is a still living witness, and other people Wheaton names are still alive, including Felix Rodriguez, (who we are trying to interview). And the work we are doing is a work in progress, not something we are done with. But I think it will narrow down the exact details of the covert intelligence operation that resulted in the death of President Kennedy at Dealey Plaza.
Afterwards we will post links to Matt Ehling’s complete interviews with Gene Wheaton, complete transcripts of those interviews, and I’ll have a transcript of William Law’s interview with Wheaton as well as the documentation that we discuss in the course of our work here.
I want to thank Matt Ehling and Lee Shephard for cooperating on this, as I think this is the most important research being done today.
MATT EHLING: FILM PRODUCER
I appreciate Bill Kelly’s invitation to address the conference today, and I want to begin with the proviso that I am somewhat of an outsider at this conference, as I have not been involved with research on the Kennedy assassination topic in any kind of a capacity. However members of this community including Bill and William Matson Law and others have reached out to me due to the fact that I hold a significant body of documentation related to M. Gene Wheaton, who had a multi-decade career in various military, law enforcement and private contractor capacities.
And over time I learned that Mr. Wheaton held a particular interest to members of this research community due to the statements he made about the Kennedy assassination both to members of the Assassination Records Review Board (ARRB) and later on camera to William Law.
So my role here today is not to speak to any specific Kennedy assassination related claims that Gene made, but to provide some basic background about Mr. Wheaton as an historical figure and to pass on some of the material he provided to me in the way of documents and recorded statements.
I first met Gene in 1998 at his home in Winchester, California. I arrived in California to interview Gene for a planned documentary on problems in the US intelligence community. I was primarily interested in the network of off the book intelligence operations that had been revealed through the Iran-Contra affair. I wanted to speak to Gene about his experience with this covert world.
As many are probably aware, Gene’s name had appeared in Oliver North’s notebook, which was introduced into evidence into the Congressional investigation of Iran-Contra. Wheaton was deposed at length in 1988 as part of an ultimately unsuccessful law suit brought by the Christic Institute against various Iran-Contra principles.
During our 1998 interview Gene spent a good deal of time reciting his professional background including years as a military criminal investigator and then as a security contractor in the Middle East. He also detailed his recruitment into the Iran-Contra operations through a man named Carl Elmer Jenkins, who he described as being one of a number of military and intelligence operatives who were active in the Middle East during the 1970s. people who would later turn up as principles in the Iran Contra operation.
This audience would be familiar with Carl Jenkins because of the records Gene Wheaton gave the ARRB in 1995, that William Law made me aware of when he called me unsolicited in 2006, after having conducted his own interview with Wheaton.
Wheaton provided the ARRB with a copy of Jenkins resume, along with other documents including Jenkins’ passport. When I finally saw the ARRB records, that was several years after I talked to Mr. Law, I took note of the fact that they included documents he had independently provided me between the time frame of 1999 and 2004.
After my 1998 interview I kept up an extensive correspondence with Wheaton, and he would frequently fax me copies of documents and hand written notes about various military topics. Among the records he provided was a copy of a resume of Jenkins that had previously been provided to the ARRB. The only difference was the copy he had provided me had additional hand written markings that he had made.
In Jenkins CV there is a reference to a “still sensitive” Cuban project 64-65. In the copy he provided me he had the handwritten note that read: “Castro assassination program.”
You can see both versions of the document on the screen right now.
Wheaton also provided me with several business cards of various personalities he claimed to have been in contact with during the Iran-Contra years, including Carl Jenkins and Nester Peno, who he described as a former Bay of Pigs veteran who worked closely with Carl Jenkins.
I interviewed Wheaton six times between 1998 and 2002 and he related portions of his background several times in the course of these interviews.
His narrative stayed consistent over the course of time and it is also notable that the details of his personal background aligned with his Christic Institute deposition. These are documents that I was only able to read years after our interview sessions.
Wheaton had a career that included military and law enforcement components, including stints in the US Marine Corps and as a police officer in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
In 2000 I did an interview with Wheaton on a topic I had spent over three years researching, which was the use of para military tactics by domestic law enforcement. And I found that the details and analysis he provided were totally consistent with what I was able to independently learn and confirm from others.
And for those who may be curious, Gene never broached the topic of the Kennedy assassination with me other than to mention in a phone conversation that Mr. Law had been in contact with him and that was the subject of his interest.
So in closing, Bill Kelly has asked me to provide some excerpts from my 1998 interview with Wheaton that includes his personal background and his relation to Carl Jenkins.
GENE WHEATON Interview with Matt Ehling - Synopsis of basic background.
I’ve served in the Marine Corps, Air Force and the Army, primarily as a criminal investigator and counter-intelligence agent. After the Marine service I went back to my hometown of Tulsa, Oklahoma and was a police officer there for a couple of years. I went back into the service as an OSI officer in the Air Force and served nine years in the Air Force that way. I served in New Mexico and Italy primarily and Oklahoma.
And then there was the build up to the Vietnam War by the time the time I got University fitted, I was too old for it, so the Army offered my an inter-service transfer if I would transfer from the Air Force to the Army as a CID agent – Criminal Investigation Division. So I transferred from the Air Force to the Army and served at Ford Ord, California and Vietnam. I was in Vietnam 67-68, and in 68 I came back from Vietnam and the Army gave me a year sabbatical to finish up my degree from the University of Nebraska in police science.
And later, after my first tour in Iran, I was stationed in Chicago as chief of CID there. That’s where I got my Masters Degree in Public Administration. I am a graduate of the Tulsa Police Academy, Air Force OSI School, Army CID School, Army Narcotics School, Army Polygraph Examiner School, and spent a year at the Defense Language Institute.
In 1971 my family and I were transferred to Iran where I was the narcotics and counter-terrorism assistant to the Shah of Iran and was on the US embassy staff as the Ambassador’s backchannel liaison with the Iranian police and intelligence agencies.
I came back from Iran in 1973 and was stationed in Chicago until 1975. I retired from the Army and went back to Iran as a civilian working on the same stuff – counter-terrorism and security on major projects. I set up the police department for a luxury resort (Kesh Island) in the Persian Gulf, with luxury hotels and golf courses.
My last assignment in Iran was executive assistant to a Vice President of Rockwell Corporation, and director of security of the IBEX program, an airborne electronic intelligence program plus mountaintop observation sites to monitor neighboring countries.
I was brought in after the assassination of three Rockwell managers from Anaheim, California, - Bill Catrell, Bob Kanard, and Bob Smith. It was a billion dollar program, and if anyone else died they were to shut down the program. Rockwell was a front for the CIA.
I think it was the 26-28th of August, 1976, a Saturday, when Catrell and his two assistants were in a company vehicle. Catrell had just got back from the US; he blew the whistle on what was some wrong doing, siphoning funds being skimmed from a covert operation. They were ambushed by a couple of guys in cars. A VW Bug pulled in front of them and a van was behind them, and about six or seven guys came out from behind a mud wall and machined gunned them. Catrell got out, the other two were killed in the car, Catrell tried to run and they shot him 40 times.
I was not working on the program at the time; I was brought in as a consultant because of my background in intelligence and as an investigator.
After I was brought in on the program I had three hats to wear – Operational Security, everything for Crypto security and administration, and security for the mountain top sites, as well as the airlines – they had three C-130s, and bought two 707s that were outfitted for electronic intelligence work.
I have worked on and off on projects with CIA people because of my background. I consider myself a policeman and not an intelligence agent. Being called an intelligence agent or private investigator is the biggest slap a professional investigator can get.
In the 70s, when I was an advisor – I carried federal agent’s credentials, in Iran, I got very close to those in the CIA – I just ran with that crowd and they sort of adopted me into their subculture.
In 1973 Dick Helms, former CIA director, came over as Ambassador, after he was cashiered out of the agency for lying to Congress, in the attempts to overthrow the government of Chile. Dick Secord came over as a general in the Air Force after they closed down operations in Southeast Asia.
Mostly spooks you see swirling around the Iran-Contra affair were from Southeast Asia. And most of them went to Iran because after the bottomless pit of money to be siphoned off the military hardware in Southeast Asia dried up after the war, they decided to go to the Middle East and do the same thing for oil money.
After Carter got elected and Dick Helms resigned as ambassador, - I had been one of his briefing officers, Bill Sullivan became the ambassador. But Bill Sullivan’s background was with the agency mostly. He had been ambassador to Laos when Ted Shackley and Dick Secord were over their fighting in the allegedly secret war when we were doing the thing in Vietnam. Sullivan just kept doing the stuff that Dick Helms was letting the covert operators do before he got there.
And that’s how I became an insider with these people. It was because of all of that, and when I went back to Iran in ’75, after I retired from the army, I went back with a… I guess you could say and electronic handshake. Some people in the agency in Washington told the people in Iran I was coming, and that I was a good guy, an insider with these clearances, and they set me up with a point of contact at the embassy if I ever needed their help, and on the outside if they ever needed mine. A mutual back scratching thing.
I’ve never in my life worked for the agency per-se, the closest thing was working for Rockwell as a contractor, and I had a CIA security clearance at that time. A lot of people have accused me of being a covert CIA guy and I deny that adamantly. It’s nothing to brag about. I had to back off that, because 90% of the CIA people are good bureaucrats. They’re just like State Department people - they’re they’re analysts, they collect, analyze and produce intelligence information. But the 10% or so who are the real grass roots covert operators, the paramilitary types, the mercenary types, they are the tails wagging the dog, the one others are afraid of. They don’t like them necessarily, but they have all the power and the money and political backing to do what they want. So the rest of the agency can’t touch them.
While running back and forth to Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Egypt in the 80s, the mid-80s, I kept my contacts at the embassies around the world, with the State Department and the Agency, so I could get quicker access into countries when I had a project I could work on.
In 1985 I became the Vice-President of a cargo airline called National Air. We had twin engine turbo prop, short take off and landing aircraft made by the Spanish Air Force called the C-212. We had the largest civilian fleet of them in the world. Corporate headquarters was right here in Riverside County, but our operational base was in Louisville, Kentucky, where we were flying short haul missions for UPS overnight, the delivery of packages. We would bring them into the hub in Louisville and they would disperse them into the bigger 747s.
It was during that period, the summer of ’85, that CIA contacts who were no longer full time employees of the agency. But when they retire these guys they usually give them a contract as an outside contractor on the side, so they have deniability so they are not employees of the agency, but in fact they are as contractors. They still carry their security clearances and have to be polygraphed once in awhile.
It was at that time that people who were around the IBEX program and Ed Wilson, before he got into trouble with Gaddafi in Libya, became more or less door openers for me in Washington. I was recruited into Ollie North’s network in 1985 because they wanted my airplanes for missions to the Contras. And they wanted my Middle-East background for helping devise a plan for the movement of weapons to the Mujahideen in Afghanistan. And I had traveled through Afghanistan before and spoke the language, and had been to Afghanistan and Pakistan more so than anybody they could find in the agency.
Well the guys I had known for many years, primarily Carl Jenkins, who was a long time career CIA paramilitary mercenary operator – probably the most highly respected of those people within that division of the agency. He was the commander of the biggest CIA base in Laos – Shackley was over there, Sullivan was the ambassador.
Carl and I became very close friends in the early ‘80s, to the point where I would keep a bedroom in his home in Washington, with clothes and papers, so I didn’t have to carry them from California. I was commuting regularly back and forth, and stayed with Carl and his wife, who was an active super grader in the Agency, he was a case officer. But she had been an interpreter, then she got her masters and PhD, and she went up one of the branches of the agency. We became like brothers and sister between me and them. Carl had an office in the Pentagon with a bunch some of the other sheep-dipped agency guys.
In the ‘80s, right after the Bush-Reagan election and those people took office, Casey and Bush and their colleagues arranged for several CIA career people, from covert operations to be sheep dipped and moved over and became civilian officers in the Pentagon. Carl was with those guys. They were in an outfit called Joint Special Operations Agency – JSOA – under a Marine Corps general named Wesley Rice, who was a CIA officer but was a Marine Corps general at the same time. They had Marine Corps people in the CIA, as many people know, they had a swinging door policy going back and forth between the Agency and the Pentagon.
JSOA, even though it was a Marine Corps agency, was controlled by the CIA and Carl was their main brains for Central American operations and Mexican operations. He took me several times down to the Pentagon and introduced me to people and took me through without having to sign passes or identification.
And when I got this job with this airline, this cargo airline, my primary mission, me and my boss, he became CEO president and I became vice president at the same time, - he was a retired Air Force Colonel. Our primary job was to see if we could save the airline so we didn’t have to lay off all these employees and put their families on the dole. We had about 23 airplanes, 50 pilots, 25 or 30 mechanics, - the airline was losing money and if we couldn’t make it profitable, we were to sell it off. That was our job.
So I was back in Washington trying to drum up business for this little cargo airline and Carl agreed to be my Washington representative for marketing purposes to open doors for me in Washington to get some cargo contracts.
It was in that vein when Carl said it was time and the guys in the NSC National Security Council wanted to bring me into their inner circle. Carl took me to an office in the State Department which was called Under Secretary for Security Assistance for Science and Technology. At that time the Under Secretary was a guy named Schneider. His executive assistant, who was the key man for covert stuff in that office in the State Department was a guy named Bill Body.
Carl had moved a US Army Colonel into that office – a CIA officer who was a Cuban from the Bay of Pigs. He had been a teenager who Carl had recruited and trained and sent in with the demolitions people in advance of the Bay of Pigs invasion and he had been captured. His name was Nestor Peno. After a year or two in Castro’s prison, Carl and his colleagues arranged for several of these guys, pre-invasion saboteurs and assassins to be released from prison in exchange for tractors and medical supplies that Castro got at that time.
[Nestor Pino WP Obits https://www.legacy.com/us/obituaries/washingtonpost/name/nestor-pino-marina-obituary?id=6018252 / https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/obituaries/nestor-g-pino-marina-army-colonel/2013/06/25/46d2175c-daaa-11e2-a016-92547bf094cc_story.html ]
And when Peno was released from the Cuban prison, Carl got him into the Marine Corps as a second lieutenant. After Nestor Peno became a Captain in the Marine Corps. Carl wanted him in Central America and in Southeast Asia in a broader scale than the Marine Corps could handle at that time, and so he arranged for him to have a service transfer to the Army as a Captain.
In the summer of ’85, when I was taken up to that State Department office Nestor Peno was a full Colonel in the US Army. But it was enclosed, attached to the State Department. That office in the State Department was in fact a full diplomatic front for an agency operation, in conjunction with the Pentagon – JSOA –DSAA -Defense Security Assistance Agency, which handles all the military sales contracts for the military.
My really broad based knowledge of covert operations evolved from the time of the IBEX program but peaked out when I was brought into the inner circle of these covert operators in the mid-80s. I had been in different compartments of the same batch of people, where even their own people, a lot of them, didn’t know the big picture. But I was considered a fair haired boy with a Middle East background and aviation background that different cells in the intelligence community needed me for different things. And I was so close to some of these people I was gradually, I was almost considered one of them. They treated me just like I was a CIA covert operator.
I was connected; I was connected in the intelligence community, the Pentagon, the Defense Intelligence Agency and State Department. And after all those years after running with these guys, I knew them all, some who didn’t know each other. And that’s how I was gradually brought into the system at that level.
END MATT EHLING INTERVIEW SYNOPSIS
GENE WHEATON – INTERVIEW WITH WILLIAM MATSON LAW – 2005
BK Notes - while he was interviewing witnesses to the JFK assassination, WM Law was contacted by Larry Hancock, who briefed Law on what Wheaton supplied the ARRB, and asked him to interview Wheaton.
[Larry Hancock and David Boylan did a in depth look and deep background check on all the names Wheaton provides and wrote: JFKCountercoup2: Larry Hancock on the Wheaton Names ]
William Matson Law: Let’s go back to Jenkins: (3934)
(He was with me?) in 1979-80 - and it evolved over a number of years that Carl and I and his wife, who was also a senior CIA officer, he was retired, but he was a (contract) case officer. He had been a secret policeman for Somoza down in Nicaragua, and she was his interpreter before they got married, she got her masters degree, they got married, he pushed her through college, and he sort of became his own wife’s case officer. He could no longer get promoted up through the ranks because he was retired and was a contract agent. But she could, because she was in one of the division of the CIA – she was a psychologist, shrinks.
WML: How did you become so close with Jenkins?
Wheaton: We just hit it off. I was flying back and forth between DC and Southern California.
At some point in time he invited me, he had an extra bedroom in his home, so I could leave my papers and clothes there, so I wouldn’t have to take them back to California. If I was going overseas I would stop off in Washington there. He opened doors for me and I opened doors for him.
In 1985 he became my Washington representative when I took over as Vice President of a cargo airline called National Air, this is the beginning of the Iran-Contra thing - they wanted my planes, - that’s how I got involved in Iran-Contra. I think you have the documentation where I made him my Washington Rep for National Air.
He took me around and he and some other CIA people introduced me to Bob Owens, who was Ollie North’s Outside Man with the Contras, and a breakfast was set up with Adolpho Carareo, who was the head of the Contras in Washington. They wanted my airplanes for that, and they wanted my background in the Middle East and counter-terrorism, as well as the airplanes, to help support the Afghan Mujahideen fighting the Soviets in Afghanistan. The Soviets left Afghanistan, (but before that) the Mujahideen – they now call the Taliban, were fighting the Soviets, so we supported them with military assistance, training, and so forth. And I flew back and forth to the Afghan boarder.
I was like a brother to Carl Jenkins.
WML- Tell me about the Cubans.
Carl was the head recruiter and trainer for the Bay of Pigs invasion for the assassins and the saboteurs that were going into Cuba before the invasion and laid the ground work for the Bay of Pigs. Carl recruited 17-18-19 year old Cuban exiles down in Miami and Guatemala and trained them and became their father figure.
These Cubans, several of them were captured at the time of the Bay of Pigs and imprisoned in Cuban prisons and Carl and some of his colleagues negotiated for their release by - its an historical record, by exchanging tractors and medical supplies for Castro.
WML: So he was part of all that?
Wheaton: He was the Head of it. Carl was head of the infiltrators, terrorists and assassins. Ted Shackley was the head of station – and Carl worked directly with him.
Rafael Quintero, “Chi Chi” Quintero was one of those Bay of Pigs guys who got caught, and when they got him out, Chi Chi became like a son to Carl. He and two or three others – Felix Rodriguez, Chi Chi Quintero, Nestor Peno,…all went to Vietnam with him, - they were in Africa in the Congo when they were trying to overthrow that government there.
WML: Did you ever meet those guys.
Wheaton: Yes. I met them. Chi Chi Quintero used to come up to Carl’s place in Fairfax, Virginia, and stay at his house, where I was staying. Carl and I would go out to National Airport to pick him up. He was living in Miami.
Chi Chi would come up there – you see he had a problem with his daughter, who was starting at Georgetown University, she had some emotional problems that I won’t go into, but he wanted to discuss them with me, he would flop there and we would talk.
Chi Chi and Ollie North and General Richard Secord, who were all i in the Iran-Contra affair, would go over to a spook attorney’s office –a guy named Tom Green, and discuss their strategies. That was before the 21 November ’86, when it all blew open wide. After that when they started seeing there was going to be legal matters that they all had to have different attorneys so they split off. Up until that time they all met at Tom Green’s office.
WML: When you got to meet these exiles, I remember you told me when we first talked, that you were sitting around and they got to know you so well they started talking about things unguarded.
Wheaton: I lived with Carl, I ate with him, we went to dinner together, me, Carl, his wife, and the Cubans who were up there, or others, retired CIA officers, we would all meet at least on weekends when I was n Washington, have barbeques together, go out to dinner, oriental food, we would all be hustling around McLean and Fairfax and those areas, it was just like a family.
They talked directly to me and to each other in my presence, as if I was one of the spook-covert crowd.
WML: Do you recall which other CIA officers were privy to…..
Wheaton: Well I’ll have to think that over.
WML: When I asked you about them discussing the JFK assassination, I asked how did that make you feel? And you said “I pretended you were deaf.”
Wheaton: Well in the beginning, whatever they talked about, I just absorbed it, and listened to them, but as time went on I began to feel Carl out, and Chi Chi Quintero particularly, because Chi Chi was a shooter. He was trained by (John) I.W. Harper.
[Harper Obit: https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/?tab=rm&ogbl - search/John+IW+Harper/FMfcgxwKjBNmMJttnvhBmpFjTqWmwnnG?projector=1&messagePartId=0.1 / https://jfkcountercoup.blogspot.com/2020/11/john-henry-iw-harper-rip.html ]
I started feeling these guys out about their involvement with the Kennedy assassination.
Carl was from Louisiana and he was the CIA liaison with Carlos Marcello the Mafia boss, who was connected in with Sam Giancana, John Rosselli, and those other guys who are on the public record as being part of that crowd of Mafia guys that they say were involved in the assassination.
WML: Did you learn if that was true?
Wheaton: I learned what they said and they said it was true.
I had been working with Senator (Hugh) Scott (Pa.) to see if we could get the records straight on the Kennedy assassination after so many years. And Chi Chi Quinteros’ wife Deloris down in Miami, they had a son at an Ivy League school up in New England and a daughter at Georgetown, and you know he had family responsibilities he didn’t have when he was a hot shot shooter….
And I said that if you guys set the whole record straight Senator Scott and I will work through the White House and Senate to get you total immunity if you tell the whole straight story.
WML: What is the straight story?
THE STRAIGHT STORY
The straight story is that there was a CIA fronted program to assassinate Castro and Carl (Jenkins) was in charge of training the Cubans in Miami to assassinate Castro and it was paid for by the CIA. They would go from Texas down to Mexico and take some convertibles and things into the hills and rocky areas and set watermelons up in the back seat and they had what they called a triangulation shooting team.
And they were according to THEM, THEY were the ones that diverted the Castro funds and training for their own agenda to snuff Kennedy.
WML: So It was a rogue element in other words?
Wheaton: Well it was partially, it was a paid element and they were CIA people. They were training to assassinate Castro, but if you are trained to assassinate one man, you can assassinate anyone using that training.
That’s what they were using – the paid training program to get Castro. The Cubans, because of the imprisonment of those guys and the failed Bay of Pigs thing, JFK backing off at the last moment in supporting the Bay of Pigs invasion,
WML: So they were angry.
Wheaton: They were furious, they were angry, still are to this day.
There was another clique above them that was worried about Kennedy not increasing the program for escalating the hostilities in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia. So at an extremely high level, I’m talking about at the political elite level, the shakers and movers of the country – the top guys at the CIA, in the Pentagon and White House, they did not want Kennedy to shut down that war because they were just trying to get it warmed up and wanted to escalate. I was chief of one of the largest bases in Vietnam.
WML: So tell me the names of the CIA officers.
Wheaton: Well, like I said I want to think about that.
WML: Was Chi Chi involved?
Chi Chi and Carl Jenkins were in charge of the main team. Carl Jenkins was training Chi Chi (Quintero) and several other shooters, about five of them – and I.F. Harper helped train these guys to assassinate Castro. And according to THEM, they went off and decided to get their revenge on Kennedy for his failure to support the invasion of Cuba.
BK NOTES: In addition to the excerpts on the taped CAPA program, Wheaton made the following remarks about the assassination:
Lee Harvey Oswald was just a stooge that Carl and his friends…... Carl you see, back in the early 1950s, when he came back from Korea, he formed the first US Marine Corps Reserve unit in New Orleans. Carl was a Captain in the Marine Corps, and a CIA officer. He formed the first US Marine Corps reserve unit in New Orleans, La., and he was the CIA liaison between CIA Headquarters and Carlos Marcello, the organized crime boss there.
Lee Harvey Oswald was a young guy, and because of Carl’s connection with the US Marine Corps reserve, and his involvement in the CIA, helped recruit Lee Harvey Oswald while he was a Marines.
Keep in mind this is not somebody sitting down and telling me this, this is over months and years of talking with them and them talking to each other in my presence. It was obvious Lee was a stooge that they set up. You always have what they call an 'Operational Security Plan' for deniability, - something that they put in the plan when they put the covert operation in place.
END OF William Matson Law Interview Excerpt
BK Notes: Shortly after visiting Jenkins, Lee Shephard sent me the following email:
No recording, no cameras. His wife Denice asked me if I was wired before he would even talk to me. She's his gatekeeper and wouldn't let us have a private talk. He denied everything and I just let him talk about whatever he wanted, which was the BOP, Panama, Laos, Malaysia and Vietnam. He's clear on dates, locations and names but he wouldn't discuss Rip Robertson, Chi, Chi or any of the gang. Said he didn't even know JFK was in Dallas and had no idea who assassinated him. I offered him book rights on his life story and money but he said he doesn't need the $ or the attention and isn't interested in celebrity or setting the historic record straight.
Lee Shephard’s report of his conversation with Carl Jenkins
LEE SHEPHARD on visiting Carl Jenkins
Carl Jenkins was a high level para military trainer and infiltration expert who joined the CIA in 1952.
He was a rare bird, the cream d’la cream individual. No pencil, pen or paper, no camera or recording device were allowed in the interview, but he did give me his autograph.
Mr. Jenkins at 93 was sharp, lucid, with a good memory of dates, locations, names and detail.
I came uninvited, yet he was friendly and talkative for almost two hours.
Part of Carl is frozen in time. He spoke of Communism with fury, as if it was still a threat. He got quite upset when I suggested it was time to reopen ties with Cuba now that Castro was gone. And he rejected that idea completely.
He would not discuss Rip Robertson, Felix Rodriguez or any of the JMWAVE gang so we talked about his adventures in Southeast Asia and Indonesia. I tried from time to time to divert him back to 1963 and he said he didn’t know JFK was in Dallas. Had no idea who assassinated him, and was not even in the country when it happened, which is kind of indigenous, as we know he returned from his assignment in Vietnam in the Spring of ’63.
When Gene Wheaton’s name came up he cursed and said Wheaton was” a nobody on the outer ring of an elite group, who sought his moment of glory. We knew he was a COP, so we never told him anything important.”
Personally I find that comment very revealing.
When I mentioned my attempts to contact his second wife Elizabeth, who lives in McClean, Virginia, he was very interested in what she had to say. Elizabeth was a clerk in Vietnam, was in military intelligence with five kids, and fled Vietnam four days before it went into a state of Marshall Law and collapsed. Elizabeth now resides in a retirement community, and her and Carl’s son Bart lives nearby.
Bart’s company does work for FAIC and his wife Alia, is a high level officer at the Pentagon. Alia’s title is principal deputy assistant secretary of the Navy, financial management and comptroller.
I offered Carl book rights for his life story but he said he didn’t need the money, and isn’t interested in celebrity. He feels he has been maligned and lied about, enough already. But has no interest in setting the record straight.
He certainly trained men in Indonesia, Guatemala, Panama, South East Asia and Florida to kill people, so he is not innocent by any standard. He is a professional soldier. It is possible Jenkins was uninvolved in the conspiracy to kill President Kennedy, maybe he didn’t order the tactical team to Dallas. Certainly he was in a position to hear things, and simply listed it as gossip, until it was too late.
The thing is Wheaton wanted to investigate it, Jenkins choses not to go there. He does not or can not accept it. He cold likely give us what he did hear, that he thinks Wheaton misunderstood things, but he refuses to even discuss it, which to me suggests he is not totally sure there is not something to the story.
The thing that bothers me is Carl’s supposed awareness of Oswald. It has been suggested by Wheaton that Jenkins used his position in the Marines to enlist Oswald into an association with the CIA.
As Wheaton said, “Lee was just a stooge and part of an operation security plan for deniability when they put the dirty operation into place.”
From Wheaton’s own personal statements: “Note the US Marine Reserve unit that my associate - Jenkins established, was in the New Orleans area, and served as a cover for CIA Latin American operations. Well that puts him right there with Oswald too. He spent a lot of time in New Orleans.
In closing I would like to add that Carl is not doing us any favors by not discussing what he knows. Unfortunately his loss is not only his but ours. My opinion of the man is somewhat mixed. I try to take Carl at his word but his withholding information is the same as lying. Whatever we may think of him, he is a factor in this story.
Please send comments, corrections and critiques to Billkelly3@gmail.com
BK: Milton Gene Wheaton died of an injury to his head after a fall in his home on December 31, - New Years Eve, 2015. [ Tribute for Milton Gene Wheaton / https://www.evans-