Thursday, October 28, 2021

AOTUS and NARA Sued - UPDATED



David S. Ferriero Arhivist of the United States 

 Archivist of the United States (AOTUS) David Ferriero and the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) are being sued on civil court over their refusal to release Fierro's letters of recommendations to Presidents Trump and Biden before they decided to continually delay the release of JFK assassination records.

After continually promising to release all of the records, Trump, at the very last minute on the legal deadline October 26th 2017, cow towed to the CIA, his chief of staff Gen. John Kelly USMC and apparently Fierro to continue to withhold records for three years, until October 26, 2021. 

Five days before that deadline, Biden, citing Ferrier's COVID excuse, again delayed their release until Thursday, December 15, 2022, though saying there will be another release this December 15, 2021, and ordering Fierro to digitize the entire JFK Collection at NARA and put it on line.

A group of lawyers have been meeting in conference calls weekly for months, and calling themselves the JFK Act Legal Task Force, filed the first of two legal actions on Monday. 

Larry Schnapf, A NYC environmental attorney, Mark Zaid, who has made a name for himself representing military and intelligence whistle blowers, and assisted by San Francisco defense attorney, prepared the 11 page suit and are preparing another that will be filed in court in November.

While this first suit refers specifically to Fierro's letters to the president, that apparently recommend continued withholding of the records, such internal communications like phone calls, emails and letters that discuss potential action are with held under a deliberative clause, though the lawyers rightfully argue these letters fall under the JFK Act itself and are assassination records.

Preview attachment Schnapf v. NARA Complaint-FILED10.25.21.pdf

The AOTUS is a blogger, who promotes himself as an advocate of openness. 

AOTUS – The Blog of the Archivist of the United States

While I never thought the letters sent to Biden would even be read, Schnapf says the next step is to get Congressional Oversight Hearings, and I agree. It will still be difficult, and we may have to generate the response that Oliver Stone got from his movie JFK in order to get Congress to do anything, but his new documentary Through The Looking Glass may just generate that type of interest. 

Larry Schnapf writes: "Now that Biden has issued his memo, the focus of our campaign is now turning to Congress. We hope to have every senator and representative receive a letter asking them to urge the Senate Homeland Committee or House Oversight committee to hold an oversight hearing on the failure of the executive branch to comply with the JFK Act."  

"To assist this grassroots effort, I have drafted a form of letter that interested persons can use to send to their representative and senators requesting an oversight hearing. In case it is not self-evident, I have placed information about the House and Senate Committees in brackets. Writers should use the senate information in brackets when writing their senators and the House information in brackets when contacting their representative. In other words, when writing a representative, the writer should ask that the representative contact Carolyn Maloney while when writing their Senators, the writer should reference the Senate Homeland Committee."

"Ideally, each person should write three letters: one address to their representative and one to each senator."

Lawrence Schnapf


Sunday, October 24, 2021

Biden Punts JFK Records Release 14 Months

 Biden Punts JFK Records Release 14 Months

From where I am sitting President Biden had three choices, one of which had to be made by Tuesday, October 26, 2021 – he could either release all of the JFK assassination records as required by law, he could kick the can down the road another three years, as Trump did, or he could do what he did when the Families of Victims of 9-11 told him not to bother to come to any anniversary observances unless he released the still censored chapter of the 9-11 Commission Report on the Saudi Arabian connections to the crime.

In the case of the 9-11 he instead decided to issue an executive order calling for an additional study of the Saudi issue, something we expected him to do on the still sealed JFK records.

Instead he blindsided everyone by issuing a formal memorandum for the record last Friday, four days before he was required to act on the issue, and punted another fourteen months, until December 15, 2022, but added a few riders that will eventually work in favor of opening the records. We should have seen this coming as the government routinely releases uncomfortable news late on Friday so it won't go through the regular news cycle, but this one is taking on traction. 

Some key aspects of the new state of affairs are the deadlines – this December 15, 2021 there will be another data dump of records, while the Archivist, the Director of Central Intelligence and other agencies will have until December 15, 2022 to determine exactly what records still need to be redacted or withheld.

And as the law stipulates, but has not been enforced, the agencies will have to acknowledge exactly what is being redacted and withheld and describe the reasons why.

In addition President Biden has ordered the NARA to scan and put the entire JFK Collection on line, similar to what they did with the last few major data dumps, so we can peruse the records from our home computers instead of traveling to College Park, Maryland to read them in person.

As former chairman of the Assassinations Records Review Board (ARRB) said at a CAPA Press Conference at the National Press Club a few years ago, - while he saw no records that convince him of a conspiracy in the assassination, he also saw no records that require being continually withheld for any reason.

The Archivist of the United States (AOTUS) David Ferriero saw things differently after conferring with the directors of various agencies and departments, particularly the CIA, and he wrote recommendations to both President Trump in 2017 and Biden earlier this year, recommendations that are still sealed and being withheld from the public.

The AOTUS Covid excuse, that the mainstream media has jumped on, is also bogus, as while the NARA has been affected, they and the responsible agencies had 25 years to review these records, and they didn’t do it.

There has been a flurry of activity behind the scenes, as CAPA, Lancer, JFKFacts, Mary Ferrell and other groups have been lobbying both Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D. NY), chair of the House Oversight Committee to hold hearings on these issues, and President Biden to just release the records.

Now the effort reverts back to Maloney, who should be persuaded to hold public hearings on the JFK Act within the next year, at least before December 15, 2022.

A group of lawyers led by Larry Schnapf and Mark Zaid, have also drafted legal suits that will be filed this week, requiring the release of the AOTUS recommendations and more records.  Schnapf,  Larry Sabbato and Jeff Morely have a scheduled Press Conference on Wednesday, October 27 to discuss these matters, but that has been postponed until December. 

Another FOIA attorney with outstanding legal cases on the docket, opposes additional civil suits on these issues unless they are well established because when we lose, a precident is established for future cases that will also go against us. 

I will be posting the entire Biden memorandum as well as additional articles and comments from those who are knowledgeable about these things.

October 22, 2021 Memo from the White House: https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/statements-releases/2021/10/22/memorandum-for-the-heads-of-executive-departments-and-agencies-on-the-temporary-certification-regarding-disclosure-of-information-in-certain-records-related-to-the-assassination-of-president-john-f-k/

NPR: https://www.npr.org/2021/10/24/1048813624/white-house-delays-release-of-jfk-assassination-records

Bryan Bender:  https://www.politico.com/news/2021/10/24/biden-secret-jfk-files-517024

RFK, Jr. and Patrick Check In: https://www.politico.com/amp/news/2021/10/24/jfk-nephews-biden-assassination-records-517049

Loop World News: https://cayman.loopnews.com/content/biden-delays-public-disclosure-some-jfk-assassination-records

Florida News Times:  https://floridanewstimes.com/the-white-house-postpones-the-release-of-the-jfk-assassination-file-to-protect-against-identifiable-harm/364560/

The Blaze Media: https://www.theblaze.

 Legal Insurrection: https://legalinsurrection.com/2021/10/biden-blames-covid-for-decision-to-delay-release-of-jfk-assassination-files/

Memo from the White House Re: JFK Act - October 22, 2021

 THE WHITE HOUSE

The White Hous

BRIEFING ROOM

Memorandum for the Heads of Executive Departments and Agencies on the Temporary Certification Regarding Disclosure of Information in Certain Records Related to the Assassination of President John F. Kennedy

OCTOBER 22, 2021

STATEMENTS AND RELEASES

Section 1.  Policy.  In the President John F. Kennedy Assassination Records Collection Act of 1992 (44 U.S.C. 2107 note) (the “Act”), the Congress declared that “all Government records concerning the assassination of President John F. Kennedy . . . should be eventually disclosed to enable the public to become fully informed about the history surrounding the assassination.”  The Congress also found that “most of the records related to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy are almost 30 years old, and only in the rarest cases is there any legitimate need for continued protection of such records.”  Almost 30 years since the Act, the profound national tragedy of President Kennedy’s assassination continues to resonate in American history and in the memories of so many Americans who were alive on that terrible day; meanwhile, the need to protect records concerning the assassination has only grown weaker with the passage of time.  It is therefore critical to ensure that the United States Government maximizes transparency, disclosing all information in records concerning the assassination, except when the strongest possible reasons counsel otherwise.

Sec. 2.  Background.  The Act permits the continued postponement of disclosure of information in records concerning President Kennedy’s assassination only when postponement remains necessary to protect against an identifiable harm to the military defense, intelligence operations, law enforcement, or the conduct of foreign relations that is of such gravity that it outweighs the public interest in disclosure.  Since 2018, executive departments and agencies (agencies) have been reviewing under this statutory standard each redaction they have proposed that would result in the continued postponement of full public disclosure.  This year, the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) has been reviewing whether it agrees that each redaction continues to meet the statutory standard.  The Archivist of the United States (Archivist), however, has reported that “unfortunately, the pandemic has had a significant impact on the agencies” and NARA and that NARA “require[s] additional time to engage with the agencies and to conduct research within the larger collection to maximize the amount of information released.”  The Archivist has also noted that “making these decisions is a matter that requires a professional, scholarly, and orderly process; not decisions or releases made in haste.”  The Archivist therefore recommends that the President “temporarily certify the continued withholding of all of the information certified in 2018” and “direct two public releases of the information that has” ultimately “been determined to be appropriate for release to the public,” with one interim release later this year and one more comprehensive release in late 2022.

Sec. 3.  Temporary Certification.  In light of the agencies’ proposals for continued postponement under the statutory standard, the Archivist’s request for an extension of time to engage with the agencies, and the need for an appropriate review and disclosure process, I agree with the Archivist’s recommendation. Temporary continued postponement is necessary to protect against identifiable harm to the military defense, intelligence operations, law enforcement, or the conduct of foreign relations that is of such gravity that it outweighs the public interest in immediate disclosure.  Accordingly, by the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including section 5(g)(2)(D) of the Act, I hereby certify that all information within records that agencies have proposed for continued postponement under section 5(g)(2)(D) shall be withheld from full public disclosure until December 15, 2022.

Sec. 4.  Interim Release.  Any information currently withheld from public disclosure that agencies have not proposed for continued postponement shall be reviewed by NARA before December 15, 2021, and shall be publicly released on that date.  Out of respect for the anniversary of President Kennedy’s assassination, such release shall not occur before December 15, 2021.

Sec. 5.  Intensive 1-Year Review.  (a)  Over the next year, agencies proposing continued postponement and NARA shall conduct an intensive review of each remaining redaction to ensure that the United States Government maximizes transparency, disclosing all information in records concerning the assassination, except when the strongest possible reasons counsel otherwise.  This review shall include documents within the assassination records collection designated as “not believed relevant” by the Assassination Records Review Board established under the Act, but nonetheless placed within the collection by the Assassination Records Review Board.
     (b)  Any information that an agency proposes for continued postponement beyond December 15, 2022, shall be limited to the absolute minimum under the statutory standard.  An agency shall not propose to continue redacting information unless the redaction is necessary to protect against an identifiable harm to the military defense, intelligence operations, law enforcement, or the conduct of foreign relations that is of such gravity that it outweighs the public interest in disclosure.  In applying this statutory standard, an agency shall:
           (i)   Accord substantial weight to the public interest in transparency and full disclosure of any record that falls within the scope of the Act; and
           (ii)  Give due consideration that some degree of harm is not grounds for continued postponement unless the degree of harm is of such gravity that it outweighs the public interest.
      (c)  For any record containing information that an agency proposes for continued postponement beyond December 15, 2022, the agency shall provide, no later than December 15, 2021:
           (i)    an unclassified letter, to be signed by the head of the agency, providing a written description of the types of information for which the agency is proposing continued postponement and reasons for which the agency is proposing continued postponement of such information;
           (ii)   an unclassified index identifying for each such record the reasons for which the agency is proposing continued postponement of information in such record; and
           (iii)  a specific proposed date identifying for each such record when the agency reasonably anticipates that continued postponement of information in such record no longer would be necessary or, if that is not possible, a specific proposed date for each such record identifying when the agency would propose to next review again after December 15, 2022, whether the information proposed for continued postponement in such record still satisfies the statutory standard for postponement.
      (d)  NARA shall review each proposed redaction, no later than September 1, 2022, in consultation with:
          (i)    The Department of Defense if the agency proposing the redaction asserts an anticipated harm to the military defense;
          (ii)   The Office of the Director of National Intelligence if the agency proposing the redaction asserts an anticipated harm to intelligence operations;
          (iii)  The Department of Justice if the agency proposing the redaction asserts an anticipated harm to law enforcement; and
           (iv)   The Department of State if the agency proposing the redaction asserts an anticipated harm to the conduct of foreign relations.
      (e)  The relevant consulting agency, as designated pursuant to subsection (d) of this section, shall provide its assessment to NARA as to whether the information proposed for continued postponement satisfies the statutory standard for such postponement.  In reviewing a proposed redaction, NARA or the relevant consulting agency, as designated pursuant to subsection (d) of this section, should consult with the agency that proposed the redaction.
      (f)  If NARA does not agree that a proposed redaction meets the statutory standard for continued postponement, it shall inform the agency that proposed the redaction.  After consultation with NARA, the agency that proposed the redaction may, no later than October 1, 2022:
           (i)   withdraw the proposed redaction; or
           (ii)  refer the decision on continued postponement to the President through the Counsel to the President, accompanied by an explanation of why continued postponement remains necessary to protect against an identifiable harm to the military defense, intelligence operations, law enforcement, or the conduct of foreign relations that is of such gravity that it outweighs the public interest in disclosure.  
      (g)  If NARA agrees that a proposed redaction meets the asserted statutory standard for continued postponement, the Archivist shall recommend to the President, no later than October 1, 2022, that continued postponement from public disclosure of the information is warranted after December 15, 2022.
      (h)  At the conclusion of the 1-year review, any information still withheld from public disclosure that agencies do not propose for continued postponement beyond December 15, 2022, shall be released to the public on that date.
      (i)  At the conclusion of the 1-year review, each unclassified letter described in subsection (c)(i) of this section and each unclassified index described in subsection (c)(ii) of this section shall be disclosed to the public on December 15, 2022, with any updates made to account for any information initially proposed for continued postponement that is not postponed from public disclosure beyond December 15, 2022.

Sec. 6.  Digitization and Democratization of Records.  (a)  Since the 1990s, more than 250,000 records concerning President Kennedy’s assassination — more than 90 percent of NARA’s collection — have been released in full to the public.  Only a small fraction of the records contains any remaining redactions.  But many records that have been fully disclosed are inaccessible to most members of the public unless they travel to NARA’s location in College Park, Maryland.
      (b)  The Archivist shall issue a plan, no later than December 15, 2021, to digitize and make available online NARA’s entire collection of records concerning President Kennedy’s assassination.
      (c)  The Archivist shall provide additional context online about the records that have been withheld in full under sections 10 and 11 of the Act — primarily documents containing tax-related information of the Internal Revenue Service or the Social Security Administration — that are not subject to the Presidential certification requirement under section 5 of the Act.

Sec. 7.  Publication.  The Archivist is hereby authorized and directed to publish this memorandum in the Federal Register.

                               JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.

Monday, October 18, 2021

AARC FOIA - D. H. Byrd, Von Alvensleben and Doolittle

 

D. H. Byrd, Von Alvensleben and Doolittle

David Harold Byrd
D. H. Byrd with Gen. James Doolittle and a dead cat 

Before the JFK Act of 1992 the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) was the most popular means of obtaining government documents, especially those related to the assassination of President Kennedy.

The law, passed in 1966, allowed ordinary citizens to request  records from every branch of government, except Congress, that exempted itself.

Now, with the multiple failures to enforce the JFK Act, the FOIA is making a comeback.

Since the death of former Congressional  investigator Harold Weisberg, who made prolific use of the FOIA to accumulate his extensive archive on the assassination (Now available at Hood College ), the Assassination Archives and Research Center (AARC) has been the predominant source of FOIA requests regarding the assassination.  The AARC has also been known to sue in civil court in order to enforce its requests.

Originaly founded by the late Bernard Festerwald, Jr.,  its work has been carried on by attorney Jim Lesar and supported by a number of able volunteers, and assisted by attorney Dan Alcorn.  [https://aarclibrary.org/about-the-aarc/   ]

Lesar was the lead attorney on Jefferson Morley’s decade long quest to obtain CIA records on their officer George Joannides  – who ran the anti-Castro Cuban Student Directorate (DRE), the organization the accused assassin tried to infiltrate, tangled with on the street, was arrested with, and then appeared on a radio debate with two CIA trained psychological warriors.  [  https://aarclibrary.org/update-morley-suit-for-records-on-george-joannides/    ]

More recently Lesar and Alcorn were the lead attorneys on an FOIA request for any CIA records on the July 20,1944 attempted assassination of Hitler by some of his top military officers, an event that CIA officer Desmond FitzGerald told the Joint Chiefs of Staff was being “studied in detail” in order to be adapted against Fidel Castro.

Incredulous at the CIA’s response that they had no records at all, they sued in court and the CIA reluctantly coughed up one propaganda leaflet that attempted to blame the failure of the plot on communists.  [  https://aarclibrary.org/cia-responds-to-aarc-foia-suit-on-cias-1963-study-of-plots-to-assassinate-adolf-hitler/   ]      

Most recently the AARC requested any and all CIA records on D. H. Byrd, the owner of the Texas School Book Depository at the time of the assassination, and his safari partner German aristocrat Barron Werner Von Alvensleben, as well as another hunting partner Gen. James Doolttle.

Besides owning the TSBD, Bryd was also one of the owners of the LTV company that figures in various aspects of the assassination. And with Cord Meyer, Sr, father of Cord Meyer, Jr., Bryd was a founder of the Civil Air Patrol (CAP), of which the accused assassin was cadet in New Orleans with Captain David Ferrie. 

Von Alvensleben’s father is the subject of a World War II Office of Strategic Studies (OSS) report that describes him as an “assassination expert.” Von Albvensleben also wrote a monograph that was distributed among the Germans in Africa that praised and supported the German military’s July 20, 1944 attempt to kill Hitler.

Von Alvensleben established a famed park in Portuguese East Africa – Safarilandia, that was frequented by Byrd, and was where he was at the time of the assassination.

It may only be an irony, but Von Alvensleben’s favorite weapon was a 6.5 Manlicher-Schonauer, made by the same company that made the rifle found on the Sixth Floor of the TSBD shortly after the assassination. It was also used by Hemingway and other famous hunters.

Bryd invited Von Alvensleben to Texas where he visited in December, 1963, adding new heads to Byrd’s trophy room in his expansive home. Bryd also had a window removed from the Sixth Floor and placed in his trophy room as well.

While Doolittle is best known for leading the B-24 carrier based bombing raid against Japan not long after the attack on Pearl Harbor, he also gives is name to the Doolittle Report, the findings of his commission’s evaluation of CIA’s covert intelligence operations.

In 1954 President Eisenhower appointed Doolittle to act as Chairman of the committee “to conduct a study of the covert activities of the Central Intelligence Agency.

This commission also included – Mr. William B. Franke, Morris Hadley, William Pawley, and was under the executive direction of Mr. S. Paul Johnston.

This still highly redacted report, completed in only three months, supports CIA covert intelligence operations, encourages their use, advocates a centralized CIA HQ, and was completed in such a short time by the cooperation of the covert operators themselves.

Preview attachment doolittle_report.pdf /REPORT ON THE COVERT ACTIVITIES OF THE CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY ]

So the AARC FOIA request includes records on D. H. Bryd, Weiner Von Alvensleben and General Doolittle, not because of his World War II military actions, but because of his chairmanship of the Doolittle Commission on CIA Covert Intelligence Activities.

Apparently the CIA was even less enthusiastic about responding to this request than they were for Joannides or the Hitler Plot, as months after it was sent via certified mail, the CIA claimed it had not received it. When a post office inquiry was made, it was determined that the CIA officer who signed off on acccepting it was “John Smith.”

Well now the CIA has the request, and says that it will respond sometime in February. So after the October 26, deadline for President Biden’s response to enforcment of the JFK Act, and the November 22 anniversary of the assassination events, we can look forward to see what the CIA has to offer on Bryd, Von Alvensleben and Doolittle. And we can look to more frequent use of the FOIA with the increased relaization that the JFK Act will not be properly enforced. Billkelly3@gmail.com

Sunday, October 10, 2021

Patterns and 3 Time Hits

 Patterns and 3x Time Hits – by William Kelly

As an independent researcher focusing on the JFK assassination, at some point I recognized that whatever you believe happened at Dealey Plaza, it was a covert intelligence operation, with psychological warrior attributes and designed to deceive.

How do you begin to determine what happened in such circumstances?

Well, for one you being to read up on such covert intelligence operations, learn their lingo, so you can understand what they are saying and doing and learn the history of past operations.

For another, as American University professor Mrs. Max Holland has suggested, you “look for patterns.”

In reviewing almost every book and document about the assassination that I come across, I have found a few patterns, and developed a research technique that I have shared and will share again – what I call Three Time Hits – 3x Hits.

That is, when I come across a name, place, date or subject in three different divergent areas of the story, I begin a file on that as a unique subject file, and then focus on it and add to that file whatever I can find, and I have found it very use full and successful.

The first item that called my attention to the possibilities of developing this idea into a real research technique was Collins Radio. When I obtained a copy of the House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA) Final Report and supporting volumes of records, I found a number of items that referred to Collins Radio.

Among the supporting volumes is a copy of Lee Harvey Oswald’s best friend in Texas George deMohrenschildt’s manuscript “I’m a Patsy!”

It includes a reference to deMohrenschildt occasionally taking Oswald’s wife Marina to the home of his friend, retired US Navy Admiral Chester Brouton, a former submarine commander. There they sat by Bruton’s pool and had lunch, sometimes cooked on the backyard barbeque that deMornschilits claimed he built. One day Oswald himself showed up and was invited in for lunch, over which deMornschildts asked Bruton to consider giving Oswald a job at the company where Bruton was a high level executive – Collins Radio, of Richardson, Texas. Bruton was working there on developing new communication devices for nuclear submarines.

After all, deMohrenschildt failed to mention, Oswald had worked in a radio factor in Minsk, USSR. But Oswald detested military top brass, and “lifers,” and Bruton was both, so they didn’t get along very well over lunch, and Bruton got the message, so the job opportunity fell by the wayside.

When I first recognized the importance of Bruton and Collins Radio, I found his phone number in the public directory and called him. His daughter answered the phone and said her father had died, and she was there to arrange his effects. 

 I forgot about that incident until I read another chapter in the HSCA volumes called the Wes Wise Allegation, although Wise doesn’t make any allegations, he just followed his reporter’s instincts.

Wes Wise, then a popular TV reporter and later mayor of Dallas, had developed a new witness to the murder of Dallas policeman JD Tippit, an elderly Mr. White, auto mechanic, who saw a suspicious looking car parked behind an Oak Cliff restaurant, a few blocks from the site of the murer of Tippit.

Mr. White didn’t come forward himself, but his boss, the owner of the garage did, when Wes Wise was asked to give a talk about his experiences covering the assattination at the very restaurant Mr. White had seen the suspicious car. Wise then talked to Mr. White, and he identified it as a two toned blue and white 1957 Plymouth. When he walked closer, he got a good look at the driver, who he later identified as the accused assassin of President Kennedy – Lee Harvey Oswald and wrote down the license plate of the car on a piece of paper he later reluctantly gave to Wes Wise.  Mr. White said he didn’t want to get involved and Wise promised him he wouldn’t.

Wise had the FBI trace the license plate number to its owner – Carl Mather, and when the FBI went out to Mather’s house, they saw the Plymouth with the license plate in the driveway, and knocked on the door. Mrs. Mather said the car belonged to her husband, who at the time of the assassination was at work – at Collins Radio.

Where was the car on November 22 , 1963? It was with her husband at Collins Radio, until the afternoon when he returned early from work and they went to visit the home of Mrs. Tippit, the widow of the slane policeman, who was a close personal friend and former neighbor.

Instead of interviewing Mather the FBI harrassed Mr. White, and changed the car from a 57 Plymouth, that Mather owned and White had seen, to a red Ford Falcon.

I then recalled a mention in William Turner’s book on anti-Castro Cuban activities – “The Fish Is Red,” that references a New York Times article. On November 1, 1963 the New York Times front page contained a picture of the CIA raider shop The Rex, which was docked in Palm Beach, Florida, a few blocks from the President’s residence.

According to Fidel Castro, the Rex was used in a terrorist raid against Cuba, depositing commandos who were armed with high-powered rifles with scopes and captured. They were paraded on Cuban TV and confessed that they were trained by the CIA and were sent to Cuba to assassinate Cuban leaders. The New York Times reporter ran a check on The Rex and found that it was owned by the Somoza family of Nicaragaua, sold to the Belcher Oil company of Florida, and leased to the Collins Radio Company of Ricardson, Texas for research purposes.

So now I had three apparently unrelated references to Collins Radio – deMornschildt introducing Osawld to Collins executive Admiral Bruton and requesting he give Oswald a job, the presence of Carl Mather’s car at the scene of the murder of his friend JD Tippit, and his alibi of being at work at Collins Radio, and Collins being a cover for the CIA raider ship Rex.

I then began my file on Collins Radio, which has since developed extensively.

At the time I  began to focus some attention on Collins Radio in the late 1970s, the company had merged with Rockwell International to form Rockwell-Collins, so I wrote to them and requested copies of their company reports to stockholders for 1962-63-64, that was provided and proved quite interesting.

I learned a great deal from those reports, and other open public sources that reinforced my growning belief that Collins Radio was a major institutional player in the assassination, whether or not Art Collins himself was aware of it.

It turns out that Arthur Collins was a Cedar Rapids, Iowa teenager who had built his own short wave radio in his parent’s garage, the only radio able to receive the broadcast reports from polar explorer US Navy Admiral Byrd. Collins dutifully transmitted to Washington, where he would eventually establish his company as a major defense contractor.

 Admiral Byrd was a cousin of wealthy Dallas oil man D. H. Byrd, who helped  finance Admiral Bryd’s explorations, and was also the owner of the Texas School Book Depository (TSBD) at the time of the assassination.  Byrd was also a founder, in 1941, of the Civil Air Patrol, with Cord Meyer, Sr., the father of CIA official Cord Meyer, Jr., husband of Mary Pinchot Meyer.

Because of his success with intercepting Admiral Byrd’s radio transmission, Art Collins founded a company - Collins Radio that received military contracts that were very lucurative during World War II.

Collins Radios also became popular among the civilian population who became known as HAM radios operator, among them US Air Force General Curtis LeMay. LeMay was an amateur radio buff as well as commander of the Strategic Air Command (SAC), and his developing and close friendship with Collins and use of Collins Radios led to the post-WWII adoption of Collins Radio for use by the entire Strategic Air Command nuclear bomber fleet as well as the Executive Air Fleet that included Air Force One and the CIA’s Voice of America broadcast equipment.

As the Collins Radio annual reports for 1962-63-64 clearly state, Collins not only sold and provided the radios used by SAC bombers and Executive aircraft – including AF1 – but also actively serviced them, utilizing their “Radio Liberty” relay station located at the company headquaters in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

In his book The Making of a President – 1964, Theodore H. White wrote: "There is a tape recording in the archives o the government which best recaptures the sound of the hours as it waited for leadership. It is a recording of all the conversations in the air, monitored by the Signal Corps Midwestern center ‘Liberty,’ between Air Force One in Dallas, the Cabinet plane over the Pacific, and the Joint Chiefs’ Communications Center in Washington….On the flight the party learned that there was no conspiracy, learned the identity of Oswald and his arrest; and the President’s mind turned to the duties of consoling the stricken and guiding the quick."

This "Liberty" station is misidentified on most transcripts of the edited version of the radio transmissions from Air Force One on 11/22/63. "Air Force One, the Presidential airplane, was placed in service in 1962 using communications equipment developed and manufactured by Collins. The aircraft…was modified to meet special requirements…In 1962, the station many remember as "Liberty" was opened and operated from the new communications building….(in Cedar Rapids, Iowa)…Collins had a contract with the Air Force to serve as either the primary communications station or as a backup whenever Air Force One, the presidential aircraft, and other aircraft in the VIP fleet carried cabinet members or high ranking military officers. Over the airwaves the station’s call word was ‘Liberty.’" – From Collins Radio – the First 50 Years.

On the existing Air Force One radio transmission tapes the “Liberty” station is heard dozens of times, transmitting or re-transmitting messages, though it is not mentioned at all in Max Holland’s book The Assassination Tapes.

I suspected Collins independently recorded the Air Force One radio transmissions on 11/22/63, and when I called them the first person to answer said they probably did have them, but then I got a cold shoulder and brushed off from other, more senior executives.

The Collins Radio yearly reports also indicate a few other key elements in the story – that they hired a former Nazi German scientist  under Project Paperclip – Dr. Alex Lipisch, who developed the Delta 1 glider and the ME 160 Komet, the first jet fighter. For Collins he was to develop a design for a new, sleek, shallow water motorized craft that the anti-Castro Cubans could use to attack Cuba, and was later developed by General Dynamics and used in Vietnam as a Swift Boat.

According to the yearly Collins Reports they also received a government grant to study the effects of Parallax, which was described as a distorting of vision of pilots that often led to crashes, and was the title of the Parallax View book by a former OSS officer describing OSS training practices that was made into a film featuring Warren Beaty.

My Collins Radio file got bigger as I learned that:

- In the week before the assassination, a reservation was made at Jack Ruby’s Carousel Club for a large party of Collins Radio employees.

 

- David Ferrie’s telephone records reflect that in the weeks before the assassination he made frequent calls from the New Orleans law office of G. Ray Gill to the Belcher Oil Company of Dallas, Texas, the company that was the listed owner of the Rex.

 

- In 1963 Collins Radio began receiving large military contracts including one for the construction of a microwave communications network in Southeast Asia, specifically Vietnam.

- The Dallas P.D. Intelligence Division maintained a paid informant who worked at Collins Radio and reported on fellow employees who appeared suspicious or subversive, including one who was reported to subscribe to the leftist I.F. Stone Weekly.

- In Miami, Florida, a Cuban exile, and former executive of Collins Radio, was murdered, assassinated in a still unsolved homicide.

- The HSCA learned that Carl Mather’s job at Collins Radio included servicing the Executive Air fleet plane used by Vice President Lyndon Johnson.

- After Oswald was murdered while in Dallas police custody by Jack Ruby, his widow Marina P. Oswald married former Collins Radio employee Kenneth Porter.

In addion, after my success with Collins Radio, I also developed the 3 x hits technique to begin files on the Pan Am Bank of Miami, the Civil Air Patrol, Texas Employment Commission, the Defense Language Institute, New Orleans International Trade Mart, the International Rescue Committie, and others, some of which I post as examples at http://JFKCountercoup.blogspot.com

Thursday, October 7, 2021

The Collins Radio Connections Revisited

 The Collins Radio Connections

Collins Aerospace Museum, Logos


Collins Radio by Bill Kelly
Back Channels Magazine,
Volume 1, No. 4. Summer, 1992 p. 1-2.
Edited By Peter Kross
https://jfkcountercoup.blogspot.com/2012/02/collins-radio-connections-to.html?m=1


According to the former chief counsel to the House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA), “the principal impetus for the overwhelming support…establishing the HSCA…came from another source – the … Senate Committee on Government Operations with Respect to Intelligence Activities. In this report, dated April, 1976, the Senate committee published revelations that raised in the minds of many, serious possibilities of government complicity in the assassination.”

“Two astonishing facts had been developed by the Senate investigations,” the counsel noted, “- the CIA, as part of an assassination of foreign leaders (executive action) program, had enlisted the cooperation of top underworld figures in the United States in an effort to assassinate Fidel Castro of Cuba. In addition, word of the CIA/Mafia plots had been withheld by the Agency from the Warren Commission.”

In a sense, at least one member of the Warren Commission, former CIA director Allen Dulles, knew of the plots to kill Castro, but did not inform the other commissioners. Instead, he provided them all with a book about American assassins, and how they are, historically, mentally deranged loners.

The final report of the HSCA concluded that, “in the judgment of this committee, the CIA/Mafia plots, like the AM/LASH plots, should have been aggressively explored as part of the 1963-64 investigations.”

Both the CIA/Mafia and the AM/LASH plots to kill Castro were extensively evaluated by the Congressional committees, and the CIA eventually admitted to partaking in at least six different plots to kill Castro.

But three respected researchers – Gaeton Fonzi, Timothy Crouse and Paul Hoch, separately questioned why the CIA would admit to its attempts to kill Castro with flashy shellfish toxins, exploding cigars and dart gun pens, yet fail to mention the October 1961 and the November 1971 plots involving Antonio Veciana.

Yet another plot, the Rex raid of October 31, 1963, which is on the public record, is another example of the government’s failure to affirm secret operations to kill Castro that are directly entwined with the assassination of President Kennedy.

The Rex episode first came to light on October 31, 1963 when Fidel Castro announced that a team of assassins were arrested on a beach in Cuba. They had high powered rifles and other assassination weapons and confessed that the CIA had organized arm shipments to Cuban insurgents and had trained them to kill Cuban leaders.

According to Castro, the men arrived in Cuba aboard two small motor launches, marked with the name “the Rex.” A New York Times reporter in Florida confirmed that the Rex, a ship docked at Palm Beach, Florida, was indeed missing two of its launches. It was later written, “President Kennedy had expressed his great annoyance to the CIA at the fact that the Rex, one of the CIA’s boats used in raids on Cuba, docked at Palm Beach while he was there on vacation.”

This raid also took place against the clearly stated policy of the U.S. government that, “no raids against Cuba were to originate from U.S. shores.” The CIA even launched the Bay of Pigs invasion from bases in Nicaragua and Guatemala.

The New York Times published a photo of the Rex in its November 1, 1963 edition, and identified the 174 foot vessel as registered out of Bluefields, Nicaragua, “but in fact operating out of West Palm Beach, Florida.”

A decommissioned U.S. Navy sub-chaser, the Rex, captained by Aiejandro Brooks, was the flagship of the CIA’s operation JM/WAVE fleet. It was outfitted with searchlights, a crane for lifting its speedboats aft, elaborate electronic gear amidships, and had an arsenal that consisted of two 40 mm cannon, a 57 cal. Recoilless rifle, two 20 mm cannon and two 50 caliber machine guns.

The Belcher Oil Company of Miami, had bought the Rex from Paragon, a company owned by Luis Somoza of Nicaragua. The New York Times reported that, “dockage for the ship was said to be paid by Sea Shipping Co. from a post office box.”

In November, 1963, the ship was being leased to the International Division of the Collins Radio Company of Richardson, Texas, to be used for possible ELENT (electronic intelligence) gathering activity.

What is significant about the Rex and its mission to deposit assassins in Cuba on October 31, 1963, is that Lee Harvey Oswald, the accused assassin of President Kennedy, once visited the home of retired Admiral Chester Brouton, then an executive of Collins Radio, the company that leased the Rex. So someone associated with accused assassin of JFK worked for a company that was actively engaged in an assassination attempt against Castro just three weeks before the President was killed.

Oswald’s association with Brouton is cited in a HSCA report, specifically in the document, “I’m a Patsy,” written by George DeMohrenschildt, who knew Brouton personally and took Oswald and his wife to Brouton’s home in suburban Dallas where they had lunch by the pool.

Brouton’s position with Collins is also mentioned in Legend: The Secret Life of Lee Harvey Oswald by Edward J. Epstein, but the Rex incident is ignored by the HSCA as well as by Epstein.

Although the associations between Oswald and Brouton, Brouton and Collins and Collins and the Rex should have been enough to warrant an investigation of the corporate structure of Collins Radio, Inc. yet another Collins Radio employee was investigated immediately after the murder of Dallas policeman J.D. Tippit on November 22, 1963.

Tippit was killed in the Oak Cliff section of Dallas within an hour of the President’s death and his murder was also attributed to the President’s alleged assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald. The final report of the HSCA claims that, “…the committee’s investigation uncovered no direct evidence of a relationship between Oswald and Tippit, nor did it attribute any activity or association to Officer Tippit that could be deemed suspicious…”

But the items listed under the Committee’s report Section 11, Volume XII – Oswald-Tippit Associates, are indeed suspicious. This is a serious discrepancy between the stated conclusions of the HSCA and the evidence it developed and published as part of the public record.

As former Warren Commission counsel David Belin put it, “the Tippit murder is the Rosetta Stone of the Kennedy assassination,” and although he meant it to convict Oswald as the lone assassin, it may assist in the unraveling of the covert conspiracy.

Under Section XI – Austin’s Barbecue, it is revealed that besides being a Dallas policeman, Tippit also held a job moonlighting as a bouncer at Austin’s Drive-In restaurant. The owner of Austin’s was a partner with Bert Bowman, who owned money to and lived with Ralph Paul, Jack Ruby’s financial backer.

Ruby also owed money to Paul – an estimated $15,000, and the $3,000 Ruby had with him when he shot Oswald was reportedly Paul’s cash. Although Ruby might not have known officer Tippit, both men worked for the same Bowman/Paul combine.

Both Oswald and Tippit also frequented the same Dobb’s House restaurant in Oak Cliff, and both sat at the same counter for breakfast together on the morning of the day before the assassination. Although they weren’t seen conversing together, Oswald complained loudly about his eggs being too well done, and the waitress said that Tippit “shot him a glace.”

The HSCA reports also show that shortly after Tippit’s murder, Oswald was seen sitting in a parked car that belonged to Tippit’s best friend, Carl Mather, who worked for Collins Radio.

Listed in the HSCA reports as “The Wise Allegation,” because it originated with former Dallas newsman and mayor Wes Wise, the report reads: “Wise…had received information that a car near the scene of the Tippit shooting was traced to Carl Mather, a close friend of Tippit’s….A mechanic who worked across the street had observed a car in a parking lot of the El Chico restaurant on the afternoon of November 22, after radio reports were being broadcast about the shooting in Dealey Plaza. The mechanic told Wise that after the assassination there were sirens blaring and police cars all over the area near the garage.

“He noticed,” the report continues, “a man sitting in an irregularly parked car in the restaurant parking lot; the car was slightly hidden by a billboard. The man in the car appeared to be hiding, all the circumstances seemed so suspicious that the mechanic went across the street to get a better look.”

“When the mechanic saw news accounts of the assassination on television, he saw Lee Harvey Oswald and recognized him as being the man he had seen in the car that afternoon.”

So on the afternoon of JFK’s murder, the accused assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald is seen sitting in a car belonging to a close friend of Dallas policeman J.D. Tippit, who Oswald is also accused of killing. That friend, Carl Mather, worked for Collins Radio, a company that was actively engaged in at least one plot to assassinate Fidel Castro three weeks earlier.

According to Professor Peter Dale Scott, the Rex mission of October 31, 1963 was sponsored by the anti-Castro Cuban group known as the MDC – the Movement Democrato Christiano, which also ran a commando training camp near Lake Ponchartrain in Louisiana that Oswald had previously tried to infiltrate. The FBI raided that camp, and made some arrests and stirred up some publicity.

Scott also says that the Rex mission may have included Watergate burglar Rolando Martinez.

Like may other unsolved mysteries surrounding the Kennedy assassination, the secret mission of the Rex is yet to be fully explained.

William Kelly, Jr. is the Co-Founder of the Committee for an Open Archives (COA). His research on the assassination of President Kennedy is supported in part by a grant from the Fund for Constitutional Government, Investigative Journalism Project.

Hear Arthur Speak © | Collinsradio


From Crime & Cover-up by Peter Dale Scott:

“An MDC-Somoza anti-Castro mission of October 1963 fro a Florida-based ship the Somozas called the Rex, involved both Martinez as skipper (according to Sturgis) and very probably Sturgis himself as well. This Florida based raid violated President Kennedy’s publicly announced prohibition of Cuban exile raids ‘launched, manned, or equipped from U.S. territory.’ It came only one month after Sturgis himself had been publicly warned by U.S. government officials to desist from such activities.” (Note NYT Sept. 16, 1963, p. 39)

In Harpers Magazine, R. Crile and Taylor Branch interviewed Martinez:

“Although Rolando Martinez was in many ways typical of the Agency’s Cuban volunteers, he was more accomplished and experienced than most. When he surfaced in 1972 as one of the Cuban-Americans captured at the Watergate break-in, Martinez was still on the CIA payroll an had 354 missions to Cuba recorded in Agency files. As a boat captain in the clandestine navy of JM/WAVE, he completed fifty missions before the Bay of Pigs and would complete some seventy-five more during the first four years of the secret war.” (Harpers, p. 56)

Rolando Martinez: “….I took a lot of weapons to Cuba. Some were very special weapons for very special purposes. They were powerful rifles with sophisticated scopes – Springfields with bolt action, rifles used only by snipers. They were not sent to shoot pigeons or kill rabbits. Everyone in the underground was plotting to kill Castro, and the CIA was helping the underground. I was with the underground as well as the CIA, so you could say I was involved in the plots too, but that is all so obvious.” (Harpers, p. 83)

Collins Radio & the JFK Assassination 1994

In October 1994 I gave a talk at the national conference of the Coalition on Political Assassinations (COPA) in Washington D.C. on the Collins Radio Connections to the assassination of President Kennedy.

Unlike the main speakers – Dr. Cyril Wecht, John Newman, Fletcher Prouty, Michael Parenti, Mark Lane and Judge John Tunheim who were the featured speakers, my talk was in a side-room big enough for only a hundred or so people, but the room was full, and I was glad to see that Peter Dale Scott, Bill Turner and others I respected went out of their way to listen to my short, 20 minute presentation.

While most of what I talked about took place in the 1960s, thirty years previous, Washington was in the middle of a major big time government scandal which dominated the front pages of the Washington Post concerning the emergence, over the previous three years, of a huge $310 million federal building on a 68 acre site near Dulles Airport.

The official cover story was that this was the new national headquarters of the Collins Radio Division of Rockwell International, but eventually it was discovered that it would be the new headquarters for the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO), jointly operated by the Air Force and the CIA.

The very existence of the NRO was not officially acknowledged until 1992, and former CIA director R. James Woolsley testified that he was concerned that he had committed a serious security breather by uttering the initials “N.R.O.”

On August 10, 1994, NRO director Jeffrey Harris and deputy director Jimmy Hill “nervously and reluctantly joined in the first public testimony in the agency’s 34-year history,” the New York Times reported on page one the next day.

“For four years, the reconnaissance office, the agency that builds and maintains the nation’s multibillion dollar fleet of spy satellites, concealed the money for the headquarters by breaking it up into different accounts in its operating budget, its leaders testified….This was normal, they testified. Building the new headquarters….was in effect, a covert operation.”

“We have been negligent, clearly negligent, for not showing the budget breakdown for this project,” Roger Marsh, project manager for the new headquarters said.

John M. Broder, of the Los Angeles Times (Aug. 10, 1994) wrote that even former budget director Leon E. Panetta, who became White House Chief of Staff (and is now Sec. of Defense), “had no idea the four mid-rise office towers belonged to the government.”

Sen. Dennis DeConcini (D. Ariz.), chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, said that committee members knew the building was being constructed but “budget estimates and details were given to the committee piecemeal and buried in larger intelligence accounts.”

When DeConcini told Clinton, Panetta and national security advisor Anthony Lake, after they read about it in the news papers, DeConcini said the three “were caught by surprise.”

The President ordered the building project declassified, released construction costs, but when DeConcini “urged Clinton to name independent auditors to conduct an inquiry into the project,” the President instead “put the review in the hands of the CIA and Pentagon, who were responsible for hiding the project’s spending in their budgets.”

DeConcini, still fuming at the betrayal by the intelligence agencies, said he had no idea whether the investigation would uncover other multi-million-dollar clandestine operations. “For all we know, they might have a battleship floating around out in the Pacific with a bunch of communications on it that we don’t know about.”

Then it got even better, when the 3rd Anniversary issue of John F. Kennedy Jr.’s George Magazine (Oct. 1998) included an article called “The Spys Who Lost $4 Billion,” by David Wise, who had previously co-authored groundbreaking book “The Invisible Government.”

“The NRO is a top secret spy organization whose satellites…can photograph a license plate from outer space,….so how did it lose billions of dollars from its own budget?, Wise asked.

According to Wise, “With some 3,000 employees and an annual budget of around $6.2 billion,….the NRO spends far more money than any of the government’s 13 primary intelligence agencies. It’s budget is twice that of the CIA….and has played a key role in virtually every major foreign policy event of the last 35 years.”

“Yes, Virginia, there is a NRO.”

And 35 years after its cover was blown by a front page story in the New York Times for fronting for the CIA in the operation of the Rex, the NRO pulled Collins Radio off the shelf to cover for the NRO’s new headquarters, which they thought they could just build out in the Virginia suburbs without anybody knowing or asking what they were doing. And they tired to do it without the knowledge of the President, the head of the federal budget, the national security advisors or the head of the Congressional oversight committees.

Frank B. Strickland, Jr., deputy program manager of NRO’s Support Office said, “Our adversaries will change tactics, and the adversaries themselves have changed. Now we have terrorists, rogue nations, nuclear proliferation. The NRO has to keep pace.”

Collins Radio Connections

THE COLLINS RADIO CONNECTIONS to the Assassination of President Kennedy
By William E. Kelly – Revised from report originally published in Backchannels magazine and presented at the national conference of the Coalition On Political Assassination (COPA), October 10, 1994.

If the assassination of President Kennedy was the result of not only a conspiracy, but a covert action and coup d’etat, as many people believe, there should be evidence of this from both the scene of the crime(s) as well as from the highest echelons of power among those who took over the government. This would be especially so if the assassination was not the actions of a lone-nut or a foreign attack by Cuban or Soviet intelligence service sponsors, but an internal manipulation of policy and control, an inside job.

As Edward Luttwack describes in his "How-To" book Coup d’etat – A Practical Handbook(Alfred A. Knopf, 1968, p. 117), "Control over the flow of information emanating from the political center will be our most important weapon in establishing… authority after the coup. The seizure of the main means of mass communication will thus be a task of crucial importance."

At the scene(s) of the crime, eyewitness testimony is always suspect. Homicide detectives prefer more solid leads that provide documented evidence that can be introduced in court, such as fingerprints, telephone and automobile license records.

There are a number of automobile license records of significance in regards to the assassination of President Kennedy, including the tampered photo among the possessions of Lee Harvey Oswald of the license on 1957 Chevy in General Walker’s driveway, plus the license numbers of cars seen in Dealey Plaza photos immediately before and after the assassination.

Most significant however, is the Texas plate PP4537. This number was jotted down on a piece of paper by an elderly Oak Cliff mechanic T. F. White, who noticed a man acting suspiciously behind the wheel of a 1958 two tone Plymouth sedan shortly after the murder of Dallas Policeman J.D. Tippitt in the Oak Cliff neighborhood of Dallas. The car was parked behind a billboard in the parking lot of a Mexican restaurant, with the driver, like White, watching the flurry of Dallas police cars racing down the street with sirens blaring, called to the nearby scene of the shooting of Tippit.

White walked across the street to get closer and exchanged glances with the man, who quickly drove away. White wrote down the license tag PP4537 on a piece of paper and forgot about it until later that day when he saw Lee Harvey Oswald on television and recognized him as the man he saw acting suspiciously in the Plymouth earlier that afternoon.

A few weeks later, when Dallas radio reporter and later mayor of Dallas Wes Wise gave a talk at the Oak Cliff restaurant, the owner of the garage where Mr. White worked mentioned the suspicious Plymouth to Wise, who then met White. White reluctantly told his story, but was reluctant to get involved, and Wise had to use all his powers of persuasion to convince White to share the information with him. Wise promised White he would not be brought into the investigation, but tat he, Wise, would handle it. "Do you have the piece of paper with the license number on it?" Wise asked, and sure enough, White had it right there in his pocket and gave it to Wise. It read: PP4537.

White told Wise that nobody knew who or what was really behind the assassination of President Kennedy and he really didn’t want to get involved, but he handed over the paper to Wise, who passed it on to the police and FBI.

A quick check of the Texas plate #PP4537 indicated that it was assigned to Carl Mather, of Garland, Texas. When the FBI went out to the listed Garland address they found the two tone 1958 Plymouth right there in the driveway and knocked on the door. Mrs. Mather answered, acknowledged the car belonged to her husband, who was then away at work at Collins Radio, in nearby Richardson, Texas. When asked where her husband and the car was on Friday, November 22, 1963, she said that the car was in the parking lot at Collins Radio until sometime in the afternoon when her husband returned home and picked up the family to go to the Tippit residence to pay their respects to the widow and family of their good friend, who was murdered that day.

Instead of going out to Collins Radio to interview Mather however, the FBI went first to Mr. White, who Wes Wise had promised wouldn’t be involved, and took additional statements from him, changing his story for the official reports and exchanging the two tone Plymouth to a red Ford Falcon. CBS News made a polite inquiry years later, leaving Carl Mather out of the documentary program they aired but listed Mrs. Mather in the programs credits. The House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA) briefly looked into the affair, granted Mather immunity from prosecution to testify and then failed to question him under oath. The HSCA published a short report they titled "The Wise Allegation," when in fact Wes Wise made no allegations, and merely followed up on his reporter’s instincts. He came up with an automobile license plate number that was scene near the murder of a Dallas policeman that was traced to one of the victim’s best friends, Carl Mather, whose alibi is that he was at work at the time, at Collins Radio.

Documents later released under the JFK Act indicate that Mather was questioned by HSCA investigators and claimed that he worked on electronics at Collins, his specific job being the installation of the radio equipment aboard Air Force Two – the Vice President’s plane.

That this lead was not properly investigated, and remains uninvestigated today, is because such an inquiry actually does lead to the heart of the plot to murder not only Dallas policeman J.D. Tippit, but as many believe, is tied directly to the assassination of President Kennedy. If the Tippit murder is connected to the assassination of the President, as the official stories alleges, then the Tippit murder may be the "Rosetta Stone" that could explain the mysteries of both murders.

The significance of the Collins Radio connections becomes apparent with a quick review of the published record, and that:

1. On November 1, 1963 the New York Times published a photograph of the ship the Rex, which Fidel Castro identified as the boat that dropped off a team of assassins in Cuba a few nights previous. The Rex was docked at Palm Beach, Florida, near the JFK family compound, and the Rex’s Halloween eve mission was in clear violation of President Kennedy’s March 1963 edict that no para-military raids against Cuba were to originate from U.S. shores. According to the article in the NYTs, the Rex had been sold by the Somoza regime in Nicaragua to the Belcher Oil Company, its dock fees paid by the CIA front company Sea Ship Inc., with the Rex then being leased to the Collins Radio Company of Richardson, Texas, "for scientific research."

2. Founded by Arthur Collins, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Collins Radio first made news headlines when young Collins was an amateur radio buff with the only (home made) radio receiver who could pick up the radio transmissions of Navy Commander Richard E. Byrd from his polar exploration expedition. [Richard Byrd is the cousin of the founder of the Civil Air Patrol and owner of the Texas School Book Depository building].

3. Collins Radio became a major defense contractor during World War II, and following the war, participated in Operation Paperclip, hiring Dr. Alex Lipisch, the former Nazi scientist who developed the Delta I glider and ME 163 Komet jet fighter. For Collins, Lipisch was assigned to the boat development program that worked with General Dynamics in attempting to build and refine a sleek, swift speedboat – the V20 - that could be used for Cuban infiltration missions like the Rex mission. It was later used in Vietnam.

4. David Ferrie’s telephone records reflect that in the weeks before the assassination he made frequent calls from the New Orleans law office of G. Ray Gill to the Belcher Oil Company of Dallas, Texas, the company that was the listed owner of the Rex.

5. In the week before the assassination, a reservation was made at Jack Ruby’s Carousel Club for a large party of Collins Radio employees.

6. The Dallas P.D. Intelligence Division maintained a paid informant who worked at Collins Radio and reported on fellow employees who appeared suspicious or subversive, including one who was reported to subscribe to the leftist I.F. Stone Weekly.

7. When Lee Harvey Oswald returned to Texas from Soviet Russia, George DeMohrenschildt introduced him to retired Navy Admiral Chester Bruton, an executive at Collins Radio, with the idea of Oswald getting a job there, as he had worked in a radio factory in Minsk, USSR. Oswald and Marina visited Bruton with DeMohrenschilt.

8. At the time of the assassination Adml. Bruton was working on a top-secret nuclear submarine communications project for Collins, with the Navy’s nuclear sub radar and communications HQ being based at Woods Hole, Massachusetts, close neighbors of Michael Paine’s family island.

9. In 1963 Collins Radio began receiving large military contracts including one for the construction of a microwave communications network in Southeast Asia, specifically Vietnam.
10. After Oswald was murdered while in Dallas police custody by Jack Ruby, his widow Marina P. Oswald married former Collins Radio employee Kenneth Porter.

11. In Miami, Florida, a Cuban exile, and former executive of Collins Radio, was murdered, assassinated in a still unsolved homicide.

12. Collins Radio supplied and maintained the equipment used by the Voice of America, all manned NASA space flights, the Strategic Air Command (SAC), as well as all equipment used for the CIA’s Guatemalan and Cuban operations. Most significantly, Collins Radio was responsible for installing and maintaining all radio equipment aboard Air Force One, Air Force Two and the Cabinet’s plane.

13. According to the Collins Radio Annual Report to stockholders for 1963-64, Collins Radio not only installed and maintained the radios aboard most military and executive branch planes, they also operated the station known as "Liberty" at their Cedar Rapids, Iowa headquarters, which served as a relay station for all radio communications between the White House, the Pentagon, Air Force One, Air Force Two, the Cabinet plane and Andrews AFB in Washington.

[This "Liberty" station is misidentified on most transcripts of the edited version of the radio transmissions from Air Force One on 11/22/63. "Air Force One, the Presidential airplane, was placed in service in 1962 using communications equipment developed and manufactured by Collins. The aircraft…was modified to meet special requirements…In 1962, the station many remember as "Liberty" was opened and operated from the new communications building….(in Cedar Rapids, Iowa)…Collins had a contract with the Air Force to serve as either the primary communications station or as a backup whenever Air Force One, the presidential aircraft, and other aircraft in the VIP fleet carried cabinet members or high ranking military officers. Over the airwaves the station’s call word was ‘Liberty.’" – From Collins Radio – the First 50 Years.]

In his book The Making of a President – 1964, Theodore H. White wrote: "There is a tape recording in the archives o the government which best recaptures the sound of the hours as it waited for leadership. It is a recording of all the conversations in the air, monitored by the Signal Corps Midwestern center ‘Liberty,’ between Air Force One in Dallas, the Cabinet plane over the Pacific, and the Joint Chiefs’ Communications Center in Washington….On the flight the party learned that there was no conspiracy, learned the identity of Oswald and his arrest; and the President’s mind turned to the duties of consoling the stricken and guiding the quick."

According to the analysis of E. Martin Schotz and Vincent Salandria (in History Will Not Absolve Us, 1996), "And yet the White House had informed President Johnson and the other occupants of Air Force One, all of them witnesses to the hail of bullets which had poured down on Dealey Plaza, that as of the afternoon of the assassination there was to be no conspiracy and that Oswald was to be the lone assassin. If White’s report were correct this would mean that federal officials in Washington were marrying the government to the cover-up of Oswald as the lone assassin virtually instantaneously. This could have occurred only if those federal authorities had had foreknowledge that the evidence would implicate Oswald and that he would have ‘no confederates.’ An innocent government could not have reacted in such a fashion internally."

Unfortunately, there is no longer "a tape recording in the archives of the government," as the original, unedited, multiple tape recordings of the AF1 radio transmissions cannot be located despite an Act of Congress, the request of the Assassinations Records Review Board (ARRB) and numerous Freedom of Information Act requests. Our government seems to have simply lost the recordings, with no records being kept of their whereabouts or destruction, if in fact they were destroyed.

The Final Report of the ARRB
(p. 116) notes: "6. White House Communications Agency. "WHCA was, and is, responsible for maintaining both secure (encrypted) and unsecured (open) telephone, radio and telex communications between the President and the government of the United States. Most of the personnel that constitute this elite agency are U.S. military communications specialists; many, in 1963, were from the Army Signal Corps. On November 22, 1963, WHCA was responsible for communications between and among Air Force One and Two, the White House Situation Room, the mobile White House, and with the Secret Service in the motorcade."

"The Review Board sought to locate any audio recordings of voice communications to or from Air Force One on the day of the assassination, including communications between Air Force one and Andrews Air Force Base during the return flight from Dallas to Washington D.C. As many people are now aware of, in the 1970s, the LBJ Presidential Library released edited audio cassettes of the unsecured, or open voice conversations with Air Force One, Andrews AFB, the White House Situation Room, and the Cabinet Aircraft carrying the Secretary of State and other officials on November 22, 1`963. The LBJ Library version of these tapes consists of about 110 minutes of voice transmissions, but the tapes are edited and condensed, so the Review Board staff sought access to unedited, uncondensed versions. Since the edited versions of the tapes contain considerable talk about both the forthcoming autopsy on the President, as well as the reaction of a government in crisis, the tapes are of considerable interest to assassination researchers and historians."

"Given that the LBJ Library released the tapes in the 1970s, the paper trail is now sketch and quite cold. The LBJ Library staff is fairly confident that the tapes originated with the White House Communications Agency (WHCA). The LBJ Library staff told the Review Board staff that it received the tapes from the White House as part of the original shipment of President Johnson’s papers in 1968 or 1969. According to the LBJ Library’s documentation, the accession card reads: "WHCA?" and is dated 1975. The Review Board staff could not locate any records indicating who performed the editing, or when, or where."

"The Review Board’s repeated written and oral inquiries of the White House Communications Agency did not bear fruit. The WHCA could not produce any records that illuminated the provenance of the edited tapes."

At the time I delivered my report on "The Collins Radio Connections" to the National COPA Conference in Washington in October, 1994, the Washington Post had just then exposed the true occupant of a new, mammoth, suburban Virginia building. It was not the headquarters for Collins Radio/Rockwell International as had been previously reported, but they had just been the cooperating cover company for the super secret National Reconnaissance Office (NRO), just as Collins Radio had served as a cover for the CIA in the operation of the Rex in Cuba in1963.

Also, in the October, 1998 issue of John F. Kennedy, Jr.’s George Magazine, - David Wise reported on how the NRO had "lost" $6 billion in U.S. taxpayer’s money, and specifically mentioned the fiasco surrounding the construction of the HQ building, or which Collins/Rockwell served as a cover company.

[William E. Kelly is a freelance journalist whose research into the assassination of President Kennedy is partially sponsored by the Fund For Constitutional Government Investigative Journalism Project. He can be reached at:
billkelly3@gmail.com ]