News Archive - Jul 2008
New Book: The Missing Chapter
July 29, 2008: A new book, The Missing Chapter: Lee Harvey Oswald in the Far East, provides new details of the Atsugi Naval Air Station, where Marine Lee Harvey Oswald was stationed in 1957-58. Written by Jack Swike, a former Marine intelligence officer stationed at Atsugi during the same period as Oswald, the book reveals the presence of a Nuclear Weapons Assembly team on the base, in addition to the U-2 spy plane program. Accompanying the author's observations are many interesting photographs, documents, and letters, including one from former CIA CounterIntelligence head James Angleton.
Max Holland: A Need to Know
July 25, 2008: Max Holland has been working on A Need to Know: Inside the Warren Commission for twelve years, according to a Washington Post article which notes that Holland has received $131,000 in advances from publisher Knopf, in addition to a $45,000 J. Anthony Lukas Work-in-Progress Award. The book, a defense of the Warren Commission, will apparently include Holland's thesis that the first shot was fired before Zapruder began filming. This novel theory, giving Oswald 11 seconds in total, has been ridiculed by many assassination experts, including single bullet theory advocates Dale Myers and Todd Vaughan.
Proposal for New Church Committee
July 23, 2008: A former senior member of the Committee which investigated intelligence abuses in the 1970s is proposing a similar investigation, according to an article in Salon. The "Church Committee" headed by Idaho Senator Frank Church (pictured) investigated assassination plots, domestic surveillance, and other abuses of the intelligence agencies and executive branch. The seven-page memo proposes a wide-ranging investigation into domestic spying, rendition, torture, and other Bush administration programs. Such a proposal anticipates Democratic control of the White House and Congress in 2009, and was written in consultation with civil liberties advocates and aides to senior members of Congress.
Lawsuit Filed for Documents on Marcello
July 22, 2008: New Jersey paralegal Angela Clemente is suing the Justice Dept. and FBI for documents related to mob boss Carlos Marcello, according to the New York Times. The papers come from the file of hit man and "top echelon" informant Gregory Scarpa Sr., who may have spied on Marcello. Redacted FBI papers in Ms. Clemente's possession refer to Scarpa's involvement in FBI projects in New Orleans in the 1950s and 1960s. Former HSCA Chief Counsel G. Robert Blakey was quoted in support of Ms. Clemente's work, and expressed dismay that the papers being sought had not been turned over to his Committee.
Congress Subpoenas Wecht Documents
July 2, 2008: The House Judiciary Committee has issued subpoenas for documents relating to the prosecutions of Dr. Cyril H. Wecht and former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman, according to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. The committee, headed by Rep. John Conyers, is investigating whether the prosecutions were politically motivated, and is also pursuing questions related to the firing of U.S. attorneys. Wecht's trial on corruption charges ended in a mistrial, and a re-trial has been postponed by the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
Pedro Diaz Lanz Dead at 81
July 1, 2008: Pedro Diaz Lanz, one-time head of Cuba's Air Force and a dedicated anti-Castro exile, died last week at the age of 81, apparently of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to the Miami Herald. A pilot who airlifted weapons to Fidel Castro during the effort to oust the dictator Batista from Cuba, Diaz Lanz became head of the Revolutionary Air Force after Castro took power. Opposed to the communist influence he saw in the new leadership, Diaz Lanz left Cuba in June of 1959 and became a prominent and militant opponent of the regime. He conducted leaflet drops and sabotage missions with Frank Sturgis and others in the ensuing years, becoming one of the members of "Operation 40." Diaz Lanz was a fierce critic of the Kennedy administration's Cuba policy, and was even accused by Marita Lorenz and others of being involved in JFK's assassination. Diaz Lanz fell on hard times in later years and died in poverty and poor health. The MFF's archive contains many records on Pedro Diaz Lanz in FBI and CIA files.