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The Wait

Updated: Nov 3, 2021

By Gary Hill

Go down, Miss Moses, there's nothin' you can say

It's just old Luke and Luke's waitin' on the Judgment Day

"Well, Luke, my friend, what about young Anna Lee?"

He said, "Do me a favor, son, won't you stay and keep Anna Lee company?"

Once again the release of JFK documents has been delayed. Although it is accepted that government moves slowly, fifty-eight years would embarrass a sloth. But the procrastination in itself might be a revelation. It's not surprising that the focus of the withheld documents corresponds to the issues that researchers have also come to suspect were indicative of the conspiracy that led to the crime. My book, The Other Oswald a Wilderness of Mirrors explores these events as virtual smoking guns that incriminate the perpetrators in a coup de' tat. The areas that the CIA deems the most sensitive and which they are protecting fiercely are: The CIA/Mafia plots to kill Castro, Oswald's Mexico City visit, a 1963 Pentagon plan for an “engineered provocation” that could be blamed on Castro as a pretext for toppling him (Northwoods), the history of the CIA’s Miami office, which organized a propaganda campaign against Castro’s Cuba, and the personnel file of the late George Joannides, a career CIA intelligence operative who staffers on the House investigation in the late 1970s believe lied to Congress about what he knew about a CIA-backed exile group that had ties to Oswald.

But what I find really interesting is their hesitation to release redacted files believed to contain new CIA information about the 1972 break-in at the Democratic National Committee in Washington’s Watergate Hotel by former CIA operatives that led to the resignation of President Richard Nixon.

It seems clear that all of the above areas of intense secrecy revolve around Cuba and the efforts to eliminate Fidel Castro. But what about the Watergate break in? The White House tapes reveal that Nixon was obsessed that the "whole Bay of Pigs thing” would be revealed. Was it he that was some how responsible for the CIA/Mafia plots to kill Castro? Did he know that this program was turned against JFK? Researchers have always been intrigued by the connection of many of the Watergate burglars with the assassination of President Kennedy.

What goes around, comes around

Daniel Sheehan1, a constitutional and public interest lawyer, public speaker, political activist and educator, was part of a legal team led by F. Lee Bailey representing Watergate burglar, James McCord. McCord and Gordon Liddy were the only two burglars to plead not guilty. Sheehan's evaluation of the events leading to the Watergate break-in are enlightening. They take on the essence of a prelude to disaster and may be a clue to reason related documentation are being withheld.

Sheehan's account

According to Sheehan, president Nixon instructed Jeb Stuart Maguder to order the break in of Larry O'Brien's office to plant bugs. O'Brien was Head of the Democratic Committee. However, previously he had been a lobbyist for Howard Hughes. In the late 1950's when Nixon was vice-president and a member of the 5412 Committee, Hughes was a covert asset for the NSA as part of a creature known as Summa Corporation. The two came to know each other well. Nixon was a driving force in the upcoming invasion of Cuba at the time.

Although the historical scenario is that Maheu was approached by the CIA (JC King or Sheffield) to get the mafia to kill Castro to coincide with or precede the invasion, Sheehan reveals that it was Nixon who approached Hughes on the subject. Hughes, at first reluctant, then turned over the project to Bob Maheu. Maheu approached Las Vegas mob representative, John Roselli. Roselli then traveled to Chicago to report the proposition to Sam Giancana. Giancana astutely perceived that Havana was the territory of Santo Trafficante and this led to a series of meetings with him at the Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami, Florida. Trafficante wanted assurance that the proposition came from Nixon. So, the third meeting was attended by Sheffield Edwards. Edwards a former Army Colonel, was head of the CIA's Office of Security. His main task was to protect Agency personnel and facilities from enemy penetration.

At the time of the meetings, Trafficante had been working with the CIA in Operation 40 to sabotage Castro's regime. So he put together 15 assassins, some of which were CIA affiliated1. This group was called S-Force. These mercenaries were trained with Cuban exiles in 5 paramilitary bases in Florida and Louisiana. The hit team was then sent to Fort Huachuca, Arizona where they seemingly disappeared. However they soon clandestinely reappeared in Oaxaca, Mexico on a Ranch owned by Clint Murchison Jr., where they were trained by Carl Jenkins, a former member of Marine Corps and Special Forces, training specializing in utilization of triangular fire.

Fast forward to 1972. The order to bug O'brien's office resulted from Nixon's fear that O'Brien knew about Nixon being behind the Castro assassination plots. Since the plot had been turned on JFK and S-Force did the deed, Nixon had blood on his hands.

One of the Watergate burglars, Bernard Barker, had on his person at the time of his arrest, a check that was cleared through through the Banko International (Mexico City Bank) and specifically through the account of a lawyer named Manuel Ogarrio.

Financing of the Oaxaca base was handled by the skimming of Casino money in Las Vegas. The money was placed in suitcases and driven in Cadillacs through Texas and New Oleans to the Miami National Bank owned by Meyer Lansky. Next it was wired from there to International Credit Bank in Geneva, Switzerland and subsequently wired to Banko International in Mexico into the account of attorney Manuel Ogarrio Daguerre.

Pat Gray (acting head of FBI after Hoover's death) warned Nixon through John Dean, that he couldn't control the FBI investigation into the break-in. Actually it was Mark Felt that he couldn't control. Felt was passed over when Hoover died and Gray, an outsider, was given the job. Felt, later identified as the Washington Post source, deep throat, was in the process of traveling to Mexico to interview Ogarrio. This caused Nixon to send Erlichman and Halderman to the CIA to tell Helms to get the FBI to stop the investigation. They were instructid to threatened Helms with “The Bay of Pigs thing (guys) will all come out if you don't.”

Where there's smoke, there's fire

What can be deduced by the fierce protection of the unreleased documents is that they all revolve around the CIA/Mafia plots to assassinate Castro. If that's all there is to it why not release them. The plot has been exposed by the HSCA and researchers have filled in many of the details. They are withheld because the tying together of the CIA/Mafia plots, Operation Northwoods, Oswald's trip to Mexico City, the JMWAVE base in Miami which ran the exiles and the ZRRIFLE group, and Joannides' cover up of Oswald's interaction with Cuban exile groups reveal all the elements of a conspiracy to kill JFK involving rogue CIA agents, their counterparts in the Mafia and Cuban exile community, military and right wing fanatics and possibly indirectly, Richard Nixon who was the catalyst in starting the whole ball rolling.

[1] Lyrics from “The Weight.” Although the title is a homophone for the Wait, the lyrics still apply. Apologies to The Band.

[2] Over his career, Daniel Sheehan has participated in numerous legal cases of public interest, including the Pentagon Papers case, the Watergate Break-In case, the Silwood case, the Greensboro massacre case, the La Penca bombing case and others. He established the Christic Institute and the Romero Institute, two non-profit public policy centers. Sheehan has lectured on American history, politics and the JFK assassination at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Sheehan is currently Chief Counsel of the Romero Institute, where his focus is the Lakota People's Law Project. At one time, Sheehan was legal counsel to the Jesuit US national headquarters in Washington, DC.

[3] Liddy wanted to kill Hunt for talking. Hunt's wife WAS killed. The same Liddy that wanted to kill columnist Jack Anderson.

[4] Sheehan also set the book straight on the revelation that JFK didn't cut off air support at the Bay of Pigs. He only forbade the involvement of US Marines. It is an irony that air support was based in Nicaragua (Samosa) and was on a different time zone. They arrived at the invasion site one hour too late. Brilliant planning for sure.

[5] In 1960 Richard Bissell and Allen W. Dulles decided to work with the Mafia in a plot to assassinate Fidel Castro. According to Bissell, it was Edwards who first suggested the idea. Edwards argued that the advantage of employing the Mafia for this work is that it provided CIA with a credible cover story. The Mafia were known to be angry with Castro for closing down their profitable brothels and casinos in Cuba. If the assassins were killed or captured the media would accept that the Mafia were working on their own. Sheehan relates a slightly different scenario.

[6] In April, 1950 Edwards set up Project Bluebird. This was the creation of teams to check out agents and defectors for the whole CIA. Each team consisted of a psychiatrist, a polygraph (lie detector), an expert trained in hypnosis, and a technician. A forerunner of MKULTRA.

[7] Mirroring Sheffield's plan of using the Mafia as a cutout to take the blame if things went wrong, Trafficante utilized some CIA affiliated assassins in his S-Force group for the same purpose; to shift the blame to the Company.

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