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The Twelve Who Built the Oswald Legend

Part 5: The Double Dangle

by Bill Simpich, Dec 27, 2010

After the downing of the U-2, Oswald's usefulness as a dangle was ended. His casefile could still be used to hunt for leaks to the Soviets.


May 1, 1960: The U-2 went down.

However, James Angleton, intelligence analyst Ann Egerter, and other CI officers continued to use the Oswald casefile as a tool to look for leaks in the US security apparatus. If any information in Oswald's file fell into the wrong hands, that would provide a lead as to who was providing information to the Soviets.

This technique was known as the molehunt. Angleton and Egerter were both expert molehunters. Angleton and Egerter are two of the twelve who built the Oswald legend. (Legend Makers #1 and #5, respectively).

May 2, 1960: The date FBI agent John Fain (Legend Maker #7) dictated an interview conducted five days earlier with Lee's brother Robert Oswald. Fain said that Robert told him that after a three day visit upon his discharge from the Marines in September 1959, Lee had left Fort Worth for New Orleans and to resume his former employment in the import-export business. Robert said that the family was shocked when Oswald turned up in the USSR and sought Soviet citizenship.

May 3, 1960: The date Fain dictated an interview conducted five days earlier with Lee's mother Marguerite. Marguerite said that she was shaken because her letters to Lee in the Soviet Union were being returned and she didn't know how he was doing. Lee had told her during his visit the previous September that he was thinking of going to Cuba. Mrs. Oswald had also just recently received a letter from the Albert Schweitzer College in Switzerland saying that they were expecting him on April 20, 1960. What had caused Lee to change all his plans?

To further the molehunt, the descriptions of Lee Oswald and Robert Webster were merged together

Marguerite Oswald's description of Lee, as recorded by the FBI in May 1960
Marguerite Oswald's description of Lee,
as recorded by the FBI in May 1960

The clue may be in Marguerite's supposed description of Lee to Fain: "5' 10", 165 lbs., light brown and wavy hair, blue eyes".

Except for the hair color, the above is a description of Robert Edward Webster (seen in Part 2 of this series), not Oswald. Here's Webster's job application to the Rand Development Corporation in 1957: Five feet ten, 166, blond hair, blue eyes. It's also well documented that Webster's hair was slightly wavy. Oswald also had slightly wavy hair.

Oswald's height was generally described as 5 feet, 9 inches, as seen in this photo, though Oswald exaggerated his height to 5 feet, 11 inches starting with the Switzerland college in March 1959 until his return from the Soviet Union. After his return, Oswald reported himself as 5 feet, 9 inches, except when dealing with government officials, probably to stay consistent with his earlier statements. Nowhere else is Oswald's height described as 5' 10", except in a critical memo about an Oswald sighting in Mexico City shortly before the assassination with Egerter as co-author.

Oswald's actual weight in the 1956-1963 period varied between 131-136 pounds. As late as 1963, when a young man of 23 would be expected to have "filled out", Oswald exaggerated his weight at 140-150, which aided his chances for employment. When Oswald exaggerated his height to 5' 11" to the Swiss college, he also exaggerated his weight to 160 on that one occasion, probably to create more flexibility in his legend.

No one ever estimated Oswald's weight at greater than 150, except Fain and Egerter. When FBI agent John Quigley saw Oswald in jail in New Orleans in August, 1963, he estimated his weight at 140. Oswald reported his weight in Dallas at the time of his arrest as 140. Oswald's body was weighed at 131 pounds the day after his death. Although the Warren Report tilts Oswald's weight numbers to try to get closer to the 165 number, it remains consistent with this analysis.

Oswald described his eyes as grey, but government officials generally described Oswald's eye color as blue in all documents I have seen except his recently obtained passport. During Oswald's arrests in 1963 in New Orleans and Dallas, his eyes were described as blue-hazel and "blue-gray". It seems like someone decided it was time to knit together the different threads of evidence.

As mentioned in Part 2, Webster and Oswald had some striking similarities in appearance.

Lee Harvey Oswald and Robert Webster
Lee Harvey Oswald and Robert Webster

These photos are particularly eerie. The only major difference was their hair color, something that's easy to change. During this period, Oswald's future wife Marina was routinely dating foreign visitors. She appeared to be doing it largely for fun and to take advantage of the more exciting life style offered by these visitors. Finally, Soviet security felt it was a problem and Marina was encouraged to move to Minsk. Minsk is where Lee and Marina met.

Robert Webster and Marina met at the American Exhibition held in Moscow during the summer of 1959, and they saw each other on several subsequent occasions. Curiously, Marina only spoke English to Webster, while she only spoke Russian when she came to the United States with Oswald. On one occasion, Marina even confused Webster with Oswald. Were Webster and Oswald being used wittingly or unwittingly in some kind of operation?

It looks like Webster was used as a dangle to find out about Soviet progress in plastics and fiberglass and the impact on the Soviet military program

Let's take one more look at the events surrounding Oswald's entry into the USSR discussed in Part 2, but this time we'll include the events involving Webster taking us back to the days before the American Exhibition in Moscow ended in early September 1959. The American Exhibition was the locale for the famous "kitchen debate" between Nixon and Khrushchev, where the two leaders used the setting of a modern kitchen as the theatrical backdrop for a debate over which nation offered a better way of life.

Robert Webster was an employee of James H. Rand, III, president of the Rand Development Corporation that had a display at the Exhibition.

An FBI agent wrote in 1959 that "Rand cooperates with Air Force Intelligence on technical intelligence projects...(Webster) is a technician and is not witting or involved in ATIC activities". Notes on the same memo show the CIA tipping off FBI liaison that Webster was not "employed in any capacity by the CIA". Do you see the careful wording here? As Gary Hill writes in his book The Other Oswald, "Webster's movements were likely being choreographed by Air Force intelligence, whether he knew it or not."

Webster had an "ad hoc clearance" from the CIA's Office of Security division as early as June 1959 to ensure that he could work at the American Exhibition in Moscow.

As described in the preface to this series, "guides" in the Domestic Contacts Division generally refer to "guidelines" or "categories" of information, and the sources fit within this guide. In at least one instance - Robert Webster - he is repeatedly referred to as "Guide 223" - which indicates that at least sometimes a guideline could be used as a pseudonym for an individual.

Webster was explicitly named as such in this memo by CIA officer James R. Murphy of the Cleveland domestic contacts branch to the Chief of the Domestic Contacts Division during the week of Oswald's defection to the Soviet Union and the week after. It appears that DCD referred to Webster and other sources as "guides" because they guided the DCD to various types of information to collect. Guide-223 may have begun as a technique, and then turned into a nickname for Webster. He is still referred to as Guide 223 in April 1960, at pretty much the same time that Murphy reported that Rand "doesn't feel that Webster can be trusted at all."

Murphy - the future chief of the Domestic Contacts Division - was a long-time colleague of James Angleton. CIA Historical Staff's research shows that X-2's James Angleton and Murphy led the intelligence reporting on the efforts to smuggle Jewish refugees into Palestine as part of the postwar intrigue that led to the formation of Israel. See p. 357 of this internal CIA study. James Murphy later spearheaded the monitoring of Robert Webster as he maneuvered his defection into the Soviet Union, two weeks before Oswald's defection.

As for Robert Webster's boss, Henry Rand, Rand does not appear to be a CIA officer because he has a "201 number" that are used for foreign agents or other persons of interest, but he's certainly a well-respected source with a special identifier - see this analysis report cover sheet Rand prepared for the Domestic Contacts division after Webster's return.

Rand was often in contact with Major Joseph Carels of Air Force Intelligence - cross-designated with Army Intelligence - who hovered over Webster's activities in the Soviet Union. When Webster went missing, Carels contacted the Air Technical Intelligence Center (ATIC). Carels told the FBI that ATIC told him that Webster "could not be located" and that Webster "was not witting or involved with ATIC activities". This exercise in double hearsay avoided telling the FBI that ATIC was using Webster for its own devices.

ATIC became the Foreign Technology Division (FTD) in 1961 and is presently known as the National Air and Space Intelligence Center (NASIC). Everything indicates that the dangle of Webster was done on behalf of ATIC - the FTD and CIA wrote a joint report on Webster's adventures after his return.

The Assassination Records Review Board interviewed Joan Hallett in the 1990s, a temporary receptionist and the widow of the former naval attache. Hallett remembered seeing Oswald at the Embassy on September 5, right at the end of the American Exhibition, and no one could understand the discrepancy between her strong and clear and recollection and the September 5 date. The solution is simple - Hallett was mistaking Webster for Oswald. Webster disappeared on 9/10/59 - six days after the Exhibition ended. Oswald didn't arrive in Moscow until October 16.

Oswald's 1959 passport application
Oswald's 1959 passport application

On September 4, Oswald filled out a passport application saying that he was leaving the US on 9/21/59 on a ship for four months to attend school at the Albert Schweitzer College and the University of Turku in Finland. He added that he would tour Russia, Cuba, and other countries, and make a second trip within a year. This was not quite right in any case, as Oswald was not scheduled to attend Albert Schweitzer until April 1960. Oswald's statements were a red flag for any counterintelligence agent reviewing passport applications.

The day before Webster disappeared, he was told by the Soviets that he would be accepted as a citizen in exchange for teaching them how to make the Rand spray gun demonstrated at the American Exhibition. CI head Ray Rocca testified that Webster was regarded as a loss because of Soviet "interest in Webster's knowledge about the "specifications of a nozzle that prepared plastic in a particular fashion". Webster was having marital problems back at home, and enjoying the attentions of a Russian woman named Vera. Rand felt that the Soviets were using Vera to entice Webster to stay, "in order to gain his knowledge of (the) plastics and synthetics industry".

Webster knew a lot about the technology that the Soviets wanted for their military and space programs, in order to fabricate their missiles and engines. I think what the US wanted was the inside baseball on the state of development of Soviet missiles and military hardware - Webster learned during his stay that "Soviet plastics technologies on a commercial and application basis are about ten years behind those of the US".

FBI counterintelligence chief Bill Branigan discussed the Webster affair with Hoover aide Alan Belmont: "Subject does not have access to any classified data, but the Rand Development Corporation has expressed interest in his welfare because of his peculiar knowledge of the plastics and fiberglass industry. The U.S. is ahead of the Russians in the plastic and fiberglass field, and, therefore, the Soviets would have a logical interest in the subject's remaining in the Soviet Union. We also know that the Soviets have requested information concerning fiberglass and plastics through our double agents."

Oswald entered the Soviet Union while the Soviets were distracted by Webster. Oswald may have been considered as a possible "double" for Webster, and he certainly played a role as a dangle to test Soviet knowledge of the U-2 program.

During this period of time, Lee Harvey Oswald received a dependency discharge based on his claim that he was going to take care of his mother, who was supposedly injured months earlier by a falling candy box, and arrived in Fort Worth on September 12, 1959. After visiting his mother for three days, he abruptly left her and arrived in New Orleans by the 16th. As mentioned above, his brother's story was that Lee was going to resume work at an import-export business.

Webster was supposed to leave the USSR on 9/14/63. Instead, he got a 20 day visa for travel around the USSR. Air Force intelligence described it as a 20 day "Intourist" tour of Kiev, a tourism agency firmly in the hands of the KGB. Rand sent word for Webster to come home.

On September 16th, instead of returning to a day job, Oswald had obtained a ticket to go to Le Havre, France by freighter for the next day. Taking a slow boat was a good idea, as Webster's whereabouts were not yet known. Travel by freighter was also a good way to avoid foreign intelligence from knowing that an American Marine had left American soil on a civilian airliner in an era where air travel was not as pervasive as it is now; Oswald's immigration questionnaire says that he was a shipping export agent. Freeport Sulfur was one of the major corporations with Cuban interests that was ready to go to war with Castro. Was it coincidental that Oswald's freighter left from Galveston, known for some of the largest sulfur terminals in the world with Freeport right next door, and was packed with sulfur in all hatches?

On September 18, at Rand's request, Frederick Merrill of the East West Contacts, State Department sought information on Webster. Merrill had approved the work of Ruth Paine and her Quaker group to organize East-West exchanges in 1957-1958 (See CIEE, "A History on the Council of International Educational Exchange, 1947-1994", pp. 11-12).

This was the same week that the Paine family moved to the suburban Dallas town of Irving and transferred their bank accounts, while Legend Maker #12 Michael Paine settled into his new job at the Bell Aircraft Company, soon to be better known as Bell Helicopter. The Paine family also became better known after the assassination, as Michael and Ruth Paine took the Oswalds under their care in the months before November 22.

On September 30, as the visa was about to expire, Webster wrote the American embassy and told them that he was staying in the USSR. On 10/6, Edward Freers at the embassy sent a memo to the State Department that Webster was defecting. This Freers report may have been ripped right out of the files of the National Archives - only two pages are contained in the document that is described by the National Archives as a six-page document. The missing four pages appears to be the Freers report itself.

Oswald disembarked in France on October 8 - Oswald was keeping his cards close to his chest.

By October 8, a memo from the Soviet Union division revealed that all components involved with the Webster affair were swearing up and down that he was not their agent.

By October 11, Rand flew to the USSR to visit Webster, who was in the hospital for reasons that are still unclear. "Jim" Rand could not get any information, and was so frustrated that he referred to Legend Maker #4, consul Richard Snyder, as a "jerk".

Oswald made it through to Helsinki in record time (as described in Part 2) and arrives in Moscow on October 16.

Rand is now labeling Webster's defection as "industrial espionage". A memo of Rand's describes how The Big M - Khrushchev's primary emissary, Premier Anastas Mikoyan - allowed Rand, his assistant George Bookbinder, and consul Snyder to meet with Webster on 10/17 and asked him a lot of questions. I don't see anything in the record about the reason for Webster's hospital stay. At any rate, Webster filled out an affidavit renouncing his American citizenship, but Snyder refused to accept it.

On October 17, the New York Times runs a story on Webster's defection on October 17 with Webster's friend Ted "Korkycki" piously exclaiming that Webster is of no use to the Soviets. However, other memos refer to Webster as having the alias "Guide 223" and Ted "Korycki" using the alias "Lincoln Leeds".

Based on the comments in one of these memos, it looks like Agency officials were self-critical for not having previously asked for a list of all of Rand's employees in Moscow so that they could brief their people to avoid contacts with Webster and Korycki during their time in the USSR. The CIA probably suspected that the Soviets would attempt to create situations where people like Webster was interacting with others in order to spur conversation and obtain intelligence - while the US intelligence interest would be to keep such a person isolated.

Priscilla Johnson's article describing Oswald as a
Priscilla Johnson's article describing Oswald
as a "nice looking six footer"

Branigan's letter to Belmont about how the US was leading the Soviets in the plastics industry was probably triggered by a UPI article about Webster on October 19. It sure looks like the work of the journalist Priscilla Johnson (Legend Maker #3, see Part 1). The UPI article describes Webster as a "good looking six footer", with "blond hair and blue eyes". A month later, Johnson describes Oswald as a "nice looking six footer", with brown hair and gray eyes. Who but a spy agency is interested in the color of a defector's eyes?

The next day, what I call "the NASA memo" was written based on phone conferences between the Cleveland field office and Robert Crowley, OSB/CI - the head of Domestic Contacts Division (Contacts Division/00)), Operational Support Branch, CI. Crowley and his colleague E. M. Ashcraft were both CIA counterintelligence chiefs on a par with one another and other divisional chiefs. E. M. Ashcraft was monitoring the Webster case and appears to have approved a debriefing of Oswald in 1962, although almost all of the documents are missing.

A major focus of the NASA memo is about the "NASA security man in Cleveland", who had to be concerned about the impact of Webster's defection on plastics and fiberglass products. NASA received a copy of this memo. Given the links between Oswald and Webster, the NASA connection explains why all the men who came in contact with Oswald in New Orleans in 1963 got vacuumed up into working for NASA - it was probably at the request of NASA's Security Division and its allies, who wanted easy access to people with background information on Oswald.

The NASA memo also refers to a reporter who wrote a lead article on Webster for the Cleveland News. This reporter was also a source for the CIA chief of the Miami field office, Jay Gleichauf, who apparently was a "former member of the Fourth Estate". Although the reporter's name is redacted, it's not too hard to figure out that she is Doris O'Donnell, still alive at 89 years old. Described as the "first female superstar reporter", it is also said that no one had more sources than O'Donnell.

This same day, CI-SIG's Ann Egerter (Legend Maker #5) was tipped off that when FBI liaison Sam Papich asked CIA liaison Jane Roman about the extent of Agency interest in Webster, he was told that "there was some back in May 1959, but not now", and added that the Office of Security has no record of any security clearance for Webster. Curiously, Webster's boss Jim Rand recounts that May 1959 was when Webster was in the midst of getting his security clearance, which was granted on June 5. That security clearance may have come from Air Force intelligence.

On October 22, Major Robert Cochran of the Office of Special Investigations contacted the CIA Cleveland field office and assured them that things were not as bad as initially feared. The word was that Webster had no access to any classified military information. Webster is obviously a big deal for the CIA, as he's one of only ten out of 117 American defectors to the USSR that the CIA admits having contact with. Nonetheless, things settle down for Webster for awhile.

Oswald had "voluntarily stated to unnamed Soviet officials that as a Soviet citizen he would make known to them such information concerning the Marine Corps and his specialty as he possessed. He intimated that he might know something of special interest." Again, there is no proof that Oswald ever offered to provide classified information. I believe this was on purpose. Oswald wanted to make sure he had a ticket home. Oswald was watched very quietly during his first year in the USSR. Although he was put on the Watchlist and his mail was opened pursuant to Angleton's HTLINGUAL program, Egerter only opened up a 201 file on Oswald near the end of 1960 when the State Department starting asking pointed questions about defectors to the USSR.

The probable reason for Oswald's arrival is that while Oswald was a radar operator in Asia, Col. Pyotr Popov was a top double agent for the CIA, providing important Soviet military intelligence to Angleton's CI/SIG under the code name ATTIC. In April, 1958, Popov heard a drunken colonel brag about the "technical details" that the KGB had on a new high-altitude spycraft that America was flying over the USSR. Popov concluded that the leak of such details came from within the U-2 project itself. While in Berlin, Popov passed this U-2 leak to the Agency and then returned to Moscow.

The thinking here is that Angleton and Egerter used Oswald himself in a dangle to observe how the Soviets responded to Oswald. Angleton's biographer Tom Mangold wrote that the execution of Popov accelerated Angleton's belief that "Popov could only have been betrayed by a mole buried deep within Soviet Division.". Mangold found Angleton misguided, stating that "Popov was actually lost to the Soviets because of a slipshod CIA operation; there was no treachery." David Robarge, in a very thoughtful piece that should be read in its entirety, agrees that Popov's capture marked the time when Angleton became "fixed on the mole". (See David Robarge, "Moles, Defectors and Deceptions: James Angleton and CIA Counterintelligence", Journal of Intelligence History, p. 36.)

Oswald's arrival was on the same date as Popov's arrest. Although Angleton and his men probably knew that Popov was compromised, the date of Oswald's arrival may have been a simple coincidence. Based on the extremely odd manner of Oswald's method of arriving into Moscow, it does appear that Oswald's arrival may have been sped up due of the ongoing drama involving Webster.

On March 30, 1960, R. Travis at the Domestic Contacts division writes to Rocca, chief of CI research and analysis (CIRA), asking if his division had any interest in Webster. Rocca then sends a note to Soviet Division/9 asking "any interest"?

Over the next six months, Webster made it clear that he wanted to return home but the Soviets will not let him. On April 15, 1960 the CIA got word that Webster was going to be in Moscow for the May Day parade and was hoping to visit the American embassy during that time. That would be a possible way of defection, but a long and complicated affair to get him out of the country.

On April 26, 1960, Rand called the CIA Cleveland field office and told them that he and Bookbinder were heading to Moscow in the next ten days to try to get Webster out.

On April 28, 1960, the CIA Miami chief Gleichauf gets word that Henry Rand, his associate George Bookbinder, and their colleague Dan Tyler Moore are heading for Moscow. Like Rand and Bookbinder, Moore is ex-OSS. Moore is also Drew Pearson's brother-in-law, and may try to smuggle Robert Webster into Rand's car and out of the USSR. Gleichauf ends by saying that he wanted to give "some warning that an accident may be on its way to happen".

On May 1, 1960, the U-2 is shot down. The USSR shut down Rand's company. Rand lost contact with Webster, and thus the plan to get him out of the USSR never materialized.

Fain passed on three key items of false information

On May 12, 1960, Fain sent off a memo with several items of false information. As mentioned in Part 3 of this series, the most immediately explosive item was the false claim that Oswald had renounced his citizenship, which resulted in Oswald's undesirable discharge from the Navy three months later during this period where Oswald was incommunicado. By August, 1961, the FBI was forced to agree that Oswald had never renounced his citizenship, but the Navy refused to budge.

On the same day as Fain's memo, Egerter sent a letter under Angleton's name to FBI liaison Papich hinting about Rand's plan to bust Webster out of the Soviet Union. An accompanying routing slip indicates that Angleton reviewed Egerter's work a week later and signed off on it. Next to Angleton's name, the routing slip includes a careful reference to "Webster, Robert Edward". Angleton's office at headquarters maintained its interest in Webster, and Egerter continued to watch Webster while he was stuck in the USSR for another two years, finally emerging within a week of the Oswald family.

A second false item in Fain's 5/12/60 memo is when he refers to Lee Oswald's father as "Edward Lee Oswald", and his mother as "Mrs. Edward Lee Oswald". The real name was "Robert E. Lee Oswald", spelled out as "Robert Edward Lee Oswald". Webster's full name was "Robert Edward Webster". The phrase "Edward Lee Oswald" was a marked card designed to find out who had wrongfully obtained access to the set of files dealing with Oswald and Webster, and the Fain memo in particular.

The most important story that emerges from Fain's 5/12/60 memo is Marguerite's supposed description of her son: Five feet ten, 165, hair is light brown and wavy, eyes blue.

Again, Webster filled out an employment form back in 1957: Five feet ten, 166, hair is blond, eyes blue.

During May 1962, Webster fills out a questionnaire for the CIA upon his return: Five feet 9 1/2, 165, hair is blond and slightly wavy, age 33, apparent age 30, eyes blue.

On July 16, 1962, Robert Webster provides a more formal Personal History Statement to the CIA: Five feet 9 1/2, 165, hair is blond, age 33, eyes blue.

On October 10, 1963, Egerter and Charlotte Bustos co-authored two memos describing "Lee Henry Oswald", after the Cuban consulate events that supposedly involved a blond Oswald. Both memos inaccurately describe Oswald - Memo 1 is just more subtle. Five feet ten, 165, hair is light brown and wavy, eyes blue. (Memo 1, directed to Mexico City)

Six feet, receding hairline, age 35, athletic build. (Memo 2, directed to the headquarters of the FBI, State Dept., and Navy - and note that Webster was now 35 years old.)

By way of contrast, here's the FBI's description of Oswald after his August 1963 arrest in New Orleans: Five feet nine, 140, hair is light brown, eyes blue-hazel, slender build.

And, most ominously, on November 22, 1963, a 12:40 pm radio call in Dallas gave a description of the alleged assassin on the 6th floor of the Texas Book Depository based on a citizen's report. J. Edgar Hoover exhausted all leads before concluding that the description came from an "unidentified citizen". This is a very strong piece of evidence that Oswald was framed by someone with access to this intelligence information. Five feet ten, 165, (nothing about hair), age 30.

Conclusion

The only logical conclusion is that Webster was being used in a very simple technical dangle, designed to ensure that US defense capabilities were not being undercut by the Soviets in the plastics and fiberglass fields. What the US learned from the Webster operation was peace of mind, knowing that the US was ten years ahead in these areas.

When Webster was debriefed by the CIA upon his return in 1962, two Air Force representatives from FTD - the new incarnation of ATIC - were interrogators in the room.

In that vein, it may be useful to consider whether Webster and Oswald were prepared to resist interrogation from the Soviets. How much did they know about what they were doing - and were they trained to resist interrogation in any way?

Congress held hearings on the Project MKULTRA in 1977
Congress held hearings on the
Project MKULTRA in 1977

A colleague provided me with a fascinating document showing that between 1957-1962 Henry Rand's foundation received funds from the CIA pursuant to MKULTRA subproject 79, agreeing to act as a 'cut-out' for the purpose of funding organizations engaged in various sensitive research.

This is hot information. However, it does not prove that Webster was involved in MKULTRA. For the sake of argument, if we assume that both Webster and Oswald had MKULTRA training - where would this information lead us?

Keep in mind that the purpose of MKULTRA was to resist interrogation. Keep in mind that the Dallas police marveled at "how Oswald was trained to resist interrogation". That claim is less than meets the eye. Oswald talked and talked for the last two days of his life - defying the common warning to not say anything until you have spoken to your lawyer. If Oswald ever got MKULTRA training, he certainly forgot it by 1963.

In his book "The Search for the Manchurian Candidate", author John Marks wrote about how secretive Oswald was. "By Marina's description, Oswald fits the profile of a MK/ULTRA subject. MK/ULTRA subjects prepped for intelligence missions often were over trained to keep them from talking too much, they were so inhibited sometimes they did not talk about themselves at all."

Again, let's assume that Webster and Oswald may have received some tips on how to resist interrogation. And, yes, MKULTRA used exotic means such as drugs and hypnosis to prevent people from talking.

But what's the very best tool to ensure that a subject can resist interrogation? Ensure that the subject doesn't know very much. Think about that.

I believe that both Webster and Oswald were what the CIA would call "unwitting co-optees."

Not very romantic. But very practical tradecraft. I believe that's the secret of much of the story behind the use of Webster and Oswald.

After the downing of the U-2, the Oswald dangle had served its purpose. Was there any other way to use Oswald? With US-Soviet relations in flux, the coincidence in their descriptions was noted and used in a mole hunt exercise by altering Oswald's physical description and by referring to Oswald's parents as "Edward Lee Oswald" and "Mrs. Edward Lee Oswald". By embedding false statements within Oswald's file, and tracking who had access to the file information, Egerter could determine if this information had surfaced elsewhere, and that would be evidence of unauthorized access. Angleton told the Church Committee that the role of CI/SIG was to prevent the penetration of spies into the CIA and the government, and that the "historical penetration cases are recruitment of U.S. officials in positions - code clerks."

Peter Dale Scott's seminal article 'Oswald and the Hunt for Popov's Mole'
Peter Dale Scott's seminal article
Oswald and the Hunt for Popov's Mole

Angleton's biographer Edward Epstein revealed that Angleton was known for using marked cards. On one occasion, Angleton worked with the CIA's Office of Security to prepare "selected bits of information about planned CIA operations passed out, one at a time, to different units of the Division to see which, if any, leak to the enemy. The 'marked card' in the initial test revealed that an effort would be made to recruit a particular Soviet diplomat in Canada. The Office of Security agents, watching the diplomat from a discreet distance, observed the KGB putting their own surveillance on him on the day of the planned contact, realized that the 'marked card' had gotten to the KGB."

During this period of time in 1960, the New York FBI field office took a look at Oswald's file and realized that there were strange things going on. Oswald's mother Marguerite was having her letters returned undelivered. On June 3, 1960, J. Edgar Hoover himself reviewed Fain's memo and noticed that not only did Marguerite not know where her son was, but Oswald had brought his birth certificate with him to the Soviet Union. Even Hoover couldn't get a straight answer from the CIA at that point as to Oswald's whereabouts. Hoover was sufficiently unnerved to write a famous memo where he warned that an imposter may be using Oswald's birth certificate.

Marguerite kept knocking on the doors of government officials trying to find out if her son was alive or dead. She finally decided to see if she could get any action from the new administration in Washington. On January 23, 1961, three days after JFK was sworn in, Marguerite boarded a train to Washington, DC. Upon her arrival, she met with Edward Hickey at the State Department. Marguerite asked if her son was an agent of the US government. A few weeks later, after a year of silence, the government finally told Marguerite that her son Lee was alive in the USSR and had an actual address.

Finally, in the words of Peter Dale Scott, Oswald now had "a legend with an ambiguous U.S.-Soviet background, whose citizenship and whose ideological alignment were now both in question...The documentary record on Oswald, beginning with the UPI story on the weekend of his defection, was salted with references to his interest in going to Cuba...in 1963 the products of the Oswald (marked card) operation were used to double for a propaganda operation whose purpose was to neutralize the Fair Play for Cuba Committee".

- Bill Simpich

Bill Simpich is an Oakland civil rights attorney who knows that it doesn't have to be like this. He was part of the legal team chosen by Public Justice as Trial Lawyer of the Year in 2003 for winning a jury verdict of 4.4 million in Earth Firster Judi Bari's lawsuit against the FBI and the Oakland police. He works with the Mary Ferrell Foundation to decipher the cryptonyms and pseudonyms used by intelligence operatives in the JFK documents, and suggests that we will achieve historical resolution in this case more quickly than most people believe.


See all chaptersNext => Part 6: White Russians Keep An Eye On Oswald In Dallas



ENDNOTES

(Thanks and a tip of the hat to Peter Dale Scott, Larry Hancock, Greg Parker, Stuart Wexler, and many others for their research that made this article possible.)

Robert said that after a three day visit, Lee had left Fort Worth for New Orleans and to resume his former employment in the import-export business: Memo of SA John Fain re interview with Robert Oswald, p. 2, 5/6/60, Russ Holmes Work File / NARA Record Number: 104-10428-10253.

Lee had told her during his visit the previous September that he was thinking of going to Cuba: Id., re interview with Marguerite Oswald, p. 4.

Mrs. Oswald had also just recently received a letter from the Albert Schweitzer College in Switzerland saying that they were expecting him on April 20, 1960: Id., re interview with Marguerite Oswald, pp. 5-6.

The clue may be in Marguerite's supposed description of Lee to Fain: "5' 10", 165 lbs., light brown and wavy hair, blue eyes": Id., re interview with Marguerite Oswald, p. 7.

Here's Webster's job application to the Rand Development Corporation in 1957: Five feet ten, 166, blond hair, blue eyes: Employment application of Robert Edward Webster to Rand Development Corporation, 1957, FBI - HSCA Subject Files, W - X / FBI - HSCA Subject File: Robert Edward Webster / NARA Record Number: 124-10197-10416.

It's also well documented that Webster's hair was slightly wavy: See photo of Webster with AP article, reproduced in The Fourth Decade, Volume 2, Issue 5, p. 60; Webster personal record questionnaire, Part 1, page 6, item 34.

Oswald also had slightly wavy hair: Warren Commission Hearings, Volume 24, Exhibit 1981, Oswald autopsy report, p. 1.

Oswald's height was generally described as 5 feet, 9 inches, as seen in this photo, though Oswald exaggerated his height to 5 feet, 11 inches starting with the Switzerland college in March 1959 until his return from the Soviet Union: Application to Albert Schweitzer College, p. 2, 3/4/59, Exhibit 228; Warren Commission Hearings, Volume 16, p. 622. Oswald seemed to favor the 5'11" description when dealing with government officials, probably to stay consistent with his earlier statements. Nowhere else is Oswald's height described as 5' 10", except in a critical memo about an Oswald sighting in Mexico City shortly before the assassination where Egerter wrote the draft.

Oswald's actual weight in the 1956-1963 period varied between 131-136 pounds: Warren Commission Hearings, Volume 19, pp. 615 (10/56, at time of enlistment) 131 pounds; Warren Commission Hearings, Volume 22, p. 828, Exhibit 1413 (police station, after arrest 8/9/63) 136 pounds; Warren Commission Hearings, Volume 17, p. 308, Exhibit 657-A (11/25/63, day after death) 131 pounds.

Even in 1963, when a young man of 23 would be expected to have "filled out", Oswald would report his weight at 140-150, probably to maximize his chances for employment: Warren Commission Hearings, Volume 23, p. 752, Exhibit 1950, 10/4/63 job application thru JOBCO, "140 pounds"; Id., p. 752, Exhibit 1945, April or May 1963 job application at Goldring's department store, "150 pounds".

No one ever estimated Oswald's weight at greater than 150...: Warren Commission Hearings, Volume 24, Exhibit 1981, Oswald autopsy report, p. 1.

...except Fain and (as we will see) and Egerter: Fain: Memo of SA John Fain re interview with Marguerite Oswald, p. 7, 5/6/60, Russ Holmes Work File / NARA Record Number: 104-10428-10253. Egerter: Cable from Mexico City to Director, CIA, 10/10/63, NARA Record Number: 104-10015-10048.

When FBI agent Quigley saw him in jail in New Orleans in August, 1963, he estimated his weight at 140: Report of SA John Quigley, 8/15/63, Oswald 201 File, Vol 1, Folder 2, p. 73.

Oswald reported his weight in Dallas at the time of his arrest as 140 and his eyes as blue-gray: Report of Manning Clements, 11/23/63, Warren Commission Hearings, Volume 24, p. 22.

Although the autopsy surgeons estimated his weight at 150: Warren Commission Hearings, Volume 24, Exhibit 1981, Oswald autopsy report, p. 1.

Oswald's actual weight the day after his death was 131: Warren Commission Hearings, Volume 17, p. 308, Exhibit 657-A.

Oswald described his eyes as gray, but government officials often described them as blue: Warren Commission Hearings, Volume 24, p. 22.
"Gray": Warren Commission Exhibit 1951, Oswald's application for employment through A-1 employment service, 5/6/63; Oswald's application to work at Goldring's Department Store, April or May 1963; and note Oswald's passport, 6/25/63;
"Blue": Donabedian Ex. 1, Volume 19, p. 615, Oswald's Marine Corps medical exam, p. 2; Warren Commission Hearings, Volume 24, Exhibit 1981, Oswald autopsy report, p. 1; Oswald's Selective Service card, Fort Worth, Texas, 9/14/59.

Although the Warren Report tilts Oswald's weight numbers to try to get closer to the 165 number, it remains consistent with this analysis: Warren Report, p. 144.

On one occasion, Marina even confused Webster with Oswald: Report of James Hosty and Jack Pedden re interview with Katya Ford, 11/24/63, p. 2; Commission Document 5, p. 259.

Rand has a "201 number": Memo by Ann Egerter, 5/12/60, Reel 17, Folder U - Robert Edward Webster, p. 47, HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 1994.05.09.11:03:47:690005.

Analysis report cover sheet Rand prepared for the Domestic Contacts division after Webster's return: Analysis report filed by James H. Rand, 7/19/62, Reel 17, Folder S - Robert Edward Webster, p. 35, HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 1994.05.09.11:02:28:290005.

Hallett was mistaking Webster for Oswald: Assassination Records Review Board final report, 1999, p. 86.

Webster disappeared on 9/10/59: CIA memo re Robert Edward Webster, 6/20/75, HSCA Segregated CIA Collection, Box 50 , NARA Record Number: 1993.08.14.09:37:45:870028.

On September 4, Oswald filled out a passport application saying that he was leaving the US on 9/21/59: Oswald's passport application, 9/4/59, Warren Commission Hearings, Volume 17, p. 78. Exhibit 1114.

The Rand spray gun demonstrated at the American Exhibition: Johanna Smith, rough notes, staff summary of Webster, 3/16/79, p. 2; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (staff notes) / NARA Record Number: 180-10142-10469.

CI head Ray Rocca testified that Webster was regarded as a loss: HSCA Interview of Raymond G. Rocca, 17 July 1978, p. 216.

Rand felt that the Soviets were using Vera to entice Webster to stay, "in order to gain his knowledge of (the) plastics and synthetics industry": FBI memo from F. A. Frohbose to Alan Belmont, 10/15/59, NARA Record Number: 124-10210-10359.

Webster learned during his stay that "Soviet plastics technologies on a commercial and application basis are about ten years behind those of the US": Report from Domestic Contacts Divsion, Office of Origin, Case No. 38246, 8/14/62; Reel 17, Folder S - Robert Edward Webster, p. 73, HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 1994.05.09.11:02:28:290005.

We also know that the Soviets have requested information concerning fiberglass and plastics through our double agents: SSA William Branigan, chief of Espionage section to Assistant Director Alan Belmont, 10/19//59, FBI - HSCA Subject Files, W - X / FBI - HSCA Subject File: Robert Edward Webster / NARA Record Number: 124-10210-10362.

After visiting his mother for three days, he abruptly left her and arrived in New Orleans by the 16th: Warren Commission Hearings, Volume 1, testimony of Marguerite Oswald, p. 201.

Webster got a 20 day visa for travel around the USSR: Memo from "LAB" at New York FBI office to Director, FBI, 9/15/59, FBI - HSCA Subject Files, W - X / FBI - HSCA Subject File: Robert Edward Webster / NARA Record Number: 124-10210-10354.

Air Force intelligence described it as a 20 day "Intourist" tour of Kiev, a tourism agency firmly in the hands of the KGB. Rand sent word for Webster to come home: Memo from SA P. H. Fields to F. A. Frohbose, 9/21/59, FBI - HSCA Subject Files, W - X / FBI - HSCA Subject File: Robert Edward Webster / NARA Record Number: 124-10210-10354.

Oswald had obtained a ticket to go to Le Havre, France by freighter for the next day: Memoranda of SA J. Dawson Van Epps, 12/3/63 and 12/4/63, Warren Commission Exhibit 2673; also see

Oswald's immigration questionnaire says that he was a shipping export agent: Immigration questionnaire, 9/16/59, Warren Commission Hearings, Volume 23, p. 747, Exhibit 1948.

Freeport Sulfur was one of the major corporations with Cuban interests that was ready to go to war with Castro: Official History of the Bay of Pigs, Volume III, p. 182; Miscellaneous CIA Series / NARA Record Number: 104-10301-10004.

Galveston is known for some of the largest sulfur terminals in the world: Chicago Talks, "Plan Commission Paves Way for Chicago's First Sulfur Factory", 11/5/10.

Oswald's freighter was packed with sulfur in all hatches: Memo by SA J. Dawson Van Eps, 12/3/63; Commission Document 6 - FBI De Brueys Report of 8 Dec 1963 re: Oswald, p. 311.

On September 18, at Rand's request, Frederick Merrill of the East West Contacts, State Department sought information on Webster: Memorandum for the Record by SR/COP/FI about Robert Edward Webster, Project (Redacted), 10/8/59; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 104-10181-10128.

Merrill had approved the work of Ruth Paine and her Quaker group to organize East-West exchanges in 1957-1958: See CIEE, "A History on the Council of International Educational Exchange, 1947-1994", pp. 11-12. Also see George Michael Evica, A Certain Arrogance, p. 245.

This was the same week that the Paine family moved to the suburban Dallas town of Irving and transferred their bank accounts, while Legend Maker #12 Michael Paine settled into his new job at the Bell Aircraft Company, soon to be better known as Bell Helicopter: Move to Irving: Testimony of Ruth Hyde Paine, 3/18/64, Warren Commission Hearings, Volume 2, page 432, 434; Bell Helicopter: Commission Document 261 - FBI Lewis Report of 26 Dec 1963 re: Michael Paine, Interview of Mrs. Arthur Young by SA John Wineberg and SA Mason Smith, 12/24/63, p. 3.

On 10/6, Edward Freers at the embassy sent a memo to the State Department that Webster was defecting. This Freers report may have been ripped right out of the files of the National Archives - only two pages are contained in the document that is described by the National Archives as a six-page document: The NARA form states that it is a six page document from Freers to the State Department, but only two pages are contained and the Freers document appears to be missing altogether.

Oswald disembarked in France on October 8: Memo by SA J. Dawson Van Eps, 12/3/63; Commission Document 6 - FBI De Brueys Report of 8 Dec 1963 re: Oswald, p. 311.

By October 8, a memo from the Soviet Union division revealed that all components involved with the Webster affair were swearing up and down that he was not their agent: Memorandum for the Record by SR/COP/FI about Robert Edward Webster, Project LONGSTRIDE, 10/8/59; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 104-10181-10128.

By October 11, Rand flew to the USSR to visit Webster, who was in the hospital for reasons that are still unclear: FBI - HSCA Subject Files, W - X / FBI - HSCA Subject File: Robert Edward Webster / NARA Record Number: 124-10210-10358.

A memo of Rand's describes how The Big M - Khrushchev's primary emissary, Premier Anastas Mikoyan - allowed Rand, his assistant George Bookbinder, and consul Snyder to meet with Webster on 10/17: Memo by James Rand, p. 3, 10/28/59; Reel 17, Folder U - Robert Edward Webster, p. 67, HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm) / HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 1994.05.09.11:03:47:690005.

Webster filled out an affidavit renouncing his American citizenship, but Snyder refused to accept it: Johanna Smith, rough notes, staff summary of Webster, 3/16/79, p. 2; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (staff notes) / NARA Record Number: 180-10142-10469.

On October 17, the New York Times runs a story on Webster's defection on October 17 with Webster's friend Ted "Korkycki" piously exclaiming that Webster is of no use to the Soviets: Osgood Caruthers, "American Picks Life In the Soviet", New York Times, 10/17/59; Reel 17, Folder U - Robert Edward Webster, p. 109, HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 1994.05.09.11:03:47:690005

Other memos refer to Webster as having the alias "Guide 223" and Ted "Korycki" using the alias "Lincoln Leeds": Guide 223: Memo from E. S. Rittenburg to Acting Chief, Support Branch (Travis) re "Robert Webster, Guide 223", 4/18/60, HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 104-10181-10120. Lincoln Leeds: Memo from E. S. Rittenburg to Chief, Contact Division, Attn: Support (Crowley), 10/20/59; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 104-10181-10100.

It looks like Agency officials were self-critical for not having previously asked for a list of all of Rand's employees in Moscow so that they could brief their people to avoid contacts with Webster and Korycki during their time in the USSR: Id., Rittenburg to Crowley, 10/20/59.

The UPI article describes Webster as a "good looking six footer", with "blond hair and blue eyes". Uncredited UPI article, "Yank At Our Moscow Fair Runs Out On U.S.", 10/19/59, FBI - HSCA Subject Files, W - X / FBI - HSCA Subject File: Robert Edward Webster / NARA Record Number: 124-10197-10415.

A month later, Johnson describes Oswald as a "nice looking six footer", with brown hair and gray eyes: Priscilla Johnson, "US Defector to Reds Turned to Marx at 15", 11/26/59; "Security File On Priscilla Johnson MacMillan", p. 43, HSCA Segregated CIA Collection, Box 43 / NARA Record Number: 1993.08.13.18:14:26:210059.

"The NASA memo" was written based on phone conferences between the Cleveland field office and Robert Crowley, OSB/CI - the head of Domestic Contacts Division (Contacts Division/00)), Operational Support Branch, CI: Joan Mellen, "Who Was Lee Harvey Oswald?", 2008.

E. M. Ashcraft was monitoring the Webster case and appears to have approved a debriefing of Oswald in 1962, although almost all of the documents are missing: On monitoring: Memo from Ashcraft to Jane Roman, 3/14/62; Reel 18, Folder C - Webster, Robert Edward, p. 195; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 18: Webster - WIROGUE) / NARA Record Number: 1994.03.18.11:03:09:150005; On debriefing, see Joan Mellen, "Who Was Lee Harvey Oswald?", 2008.

A major focus of the NASA memo is about the "NASA security man in Cleveland", who had to be concerned about the impact of Webster's defection on plastics and fiberglass products: From E. S. Rittenburg to Chief, Contact Division, Attn: Support (Crowley), 10/20/59; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 104-10181-10100.

This reporter was also a source for the CIA chief of the Miami field office, Jay Gleishauf, who apparently was a "former member of the Fourth Estate": Jay Gleishauf; see Id., 10/20/59 memo; Fourth Estate: See Eugene S. Rittenburg memo re Robert Webster's defection to Robert Crowley, 6/20/62; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 18: Webster - WIROGUE) / NARA Record Number: 104-10182-10299.

Described as the "first female superstar reporter", it is also said that no one had more sources than O'Donnell: Brent Larkin, "Cleveland's Doris O'Donnell Was a Femme Fatale With a Reporter's Notebook", Cleveland Plain Dealer, 12/27/09. http://www.cleveland.com/opinion/index.ssf/2009/12/clevelands_doris_odonnell_was.html.

CI-SIG's Ann Egerter (Legend Maker #5) was tipped off that when FBI liaison Sam Papich asked CIA liaison Jane Roman about the extent of Agency interest in Webster, he was told that "there was some back in May 1959, but not now", and added that the Office of Security has no record of any security clearance for Webster: Memorandum for the Record by Bruce Solie, OS/SRS, 10/20/59; Reel 17, Folder U - Robert Edward Webster, p. 81; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 1994.05.09.11:03:47:690005.

Webster's boss Jim Rand recounts that May 1959 was when Webster was in the midst of getting his security clearance, which was granted on June 5: Memo by James Rand, p. 1, 10/28/59; Reel 17, Folder U - Robert Edward Webster, p. 65, HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm) / HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 1994.05.09.11:03:47:690005.

Webster is obviously a big deal for the CIA, as he's one of only ten out of 117 American defectors to the USSR that the CIA admits having contact with: Undated memo by CIA CI staff, Russ Holmes Work File / NARA Record Number: 104-10406-10141.

Oswald had "voluntarily stated to unnamed Soviet officials that as a Soviet citizen he would make known to them such information concerning the Marine Corps and his specialty as he possessed. He intimated that he might know something of special interest.": Warren Commission Exhibit 908 - Foreign Service despatch from the American Embassy in Moscow to the Department of State, dated November 2, 1959.

David Robarge, in a very thoughtful piece that should be read in its entirety, agrees that Popov's capture marked the time when Angleton became "fixed on the mole": David Robarge, "Moles, Defectors, and Deceptions: James Angleton and CIA Counterintelligence", p. 36, Journal of Intelligence History, Winter, 2003.

On March 30, 1960, R. Travis at the Domestic Contacts division writes to Rocca, chief of CI research and analysis (CIRA), asking if his division had any interest in Webster: Memo from R. Travis to Ray Rocca, 3/30/60; Reel 17, Folder U - Robert Edward Webster, p. 57; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 1994.05.09.11:03:47:690005.

Over the next six months, Webster made it clear that he wanted to return home but the Soviets will not let him: Memo from E. S. Rittenburg to Acting Chief, Contact Division, Attn: Support (Travis), 3/25/60; Reel 17, Folder U - Robert Edward Webster, p. 58; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 1994.05.09.11:03:47:690005.

On April 15, 1960 the CIA got word that Webster was going to be in Moscow for the May Day parade and was hoping to visit the American embassy during that time: Memo from E. S. Rittenburg to Acting Chief, Contact Division, Attn: Support (Travis), 4/20/60; Reel 17, Folder U - Robert Edward Webster, p. 52; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 1994.05.09.11:03:47:690005.

On April 26, 1960, Rand called the CIA Cleveland field office and told them that he and Bookbinder were heading to Moscow in the next ten days to try to get Webster out: Memo from E. S. Rittenburg to Acting Chief, Contact Division, Attn: Support, 4/26/60; Reel 17, Folder U - Robert Edward Webster, p. 51; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 1994.05.09.11:03:47:690005.

Moore is also Drew Pearson's brother-in-law, and may try to smuggle Robert Webster into Rand's car and out of the USSR: Memo from Justin Gleichauf, Chief, Miami Field Office to Chief, Contact Division, Support Branch (Crowley), 5/4/60; Reel 17, Folder U - Robert Edward Webster, p. 48; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 1994.05.09.11:03:47:690005.

Gleichauf ends by saying that he wanted to give "some warning that an accident may be on its way to happen": Id., at p. 2.

The USSR shut down Rand's company: Cleveland Plain Dealer editorial, 5/19/62; Reel 18, Folder C - Webster, Robert Edward, p. 159; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 18: Webster - WIROGUE) / NARA Record Number: 1994.03.18.11:03:09:150005

The most immediately explosive item was his mistaken claim that Oswald had renounced his citizenship: FBI report of 5/12/60 by SA John Fain; 17 Warren Commission Hearings 700, 702; Exhibit 821, p. 3.

Egerter sent a letter under Angleton's name to FBI liaison Papich telling the story of Rand's plan to bust Webster out of the Soviet Union: Letter from Egerter to Papich, 5/12/60; Routing slip re 5/3/60 memo, Reel 17, Folder U - Robert Edward Webster, pp. 46-47; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 1994.05.09.11:03:47:690005. FBI agreement in August 1961 that there was no renunciation: John Newman, Oswald and the CIA (Skyhorse: New York, 2008) p. 166.

Next to Angleton's name, the routing slip includes a careful reference to "Webster, Robert Edward": Routing slip re 5/3/60 memo, Reel 17, Folder U - Robert Edward Webster, p. 45; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 1994.05.09.11:03:47:690005.

Egerter continued to watch Webster while he was stuck in the USSR for another two years: Routing sheet from Robert Crowley to Ann Egerter, 7/15/61; Reel 17, Folder U - Robert Edward Webster, p. 16; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 1994.05.09.11:03:47:690005.

A second false item in Fain's 5/12/60 memo is when he refers to Lee Oswald's father as "Edward Lee Oswald", and his mother as "Mrs. Edward Lee Oswald": FBI report of 5/12/60 by SA John Fain; 17 Warren Commission Hearings 700, 702; Exhibit 821, p. 6.

(5/12/60) Five feet ten, 165, hair is light brown and wavy, eyes blue: FBI report of 5/12/60 by SA John Fain; 17 Warren Commission Hearings 700, 702; Exhibit 821, p. 7.

(1957) Five feet ten, 166, hair is blond, eyes blue: Employment application by Robert Webster, 11/16/57; FBI - HSCA Subject Files, W - X / FBI - HSCA Subject File: Robert Edward Webster / NARA Record Number: 124-10197-10416.

(May 1962) Five feet 9 1/2, 165, hair is blond and slightly wavy, age 33, apparent age 30, eyes blue: Personal Record Questionnaire for Robert Webster, Part I - Biographical Information, May 1962; Reel 17, Folder V - Robert Edward Webster, p. 14; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 17: Ruiz - Webster) / NARA Record Number: 1994.05.09.11:04:27:820005.

(July 1962) Five feet 9 1/2, 165, hair is blond, age 33, eyes blue: Personal History Statement, 7/16/62, Reel 18, Folder C - Webster, Robert Edward, p. 127; HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (microfilm - reel 18: Webster - WIROGUE) / NARA Record Number: 1994.03.18.11:03:09:150005.

(Memo 1, directed to Mexico City, 10/10/63) - Five feet ten, 165, hair is light brown and wavy, eyes blue: CIA headquarters teletype 74830 to Mexico City CIA station, October 10, 1963; Oswald 201 File, Vol 2 / NARA Record Number: 104-10015-10048.

(Memo 2, directed to the headquarters of the FBI, State Dept., and Navy, 10/10/63) - Six feet, receding hairline, age 35, athletic build: CIA headquarters teletype 74673 to FBI, State Department, and Navy, October 10, 1963; NARA, JFK files, CIA 201 file on Oswald.

(August 1963, New Orleans arrest) - Five feet nine, 140, hair is light brown, eyes blue-hazel, slender build: Memo of SA John Quigley, p. 5, 8/15/63; Oswald 201 File, Vol 1, Folder 2.

(November 22, 1963, dispatcher's report, 12:45 pm) - Five feet ten, 165, (nothing about hair), age 30: FBI report of 8/11/64 re Dallas dispatcher transcript of 11/22/63, p. 28; Warren Commission Hearings, Volume 23, p. 845; Exhibit 1974.

"Historical penetration cases are recruitment of U.S. officials in positions - code clerks.": Deposition of James Angleton, 9/17/75, p.17; Church Committee Boxed Files / NARA Record Number: 157-10014-10007.

Angleton's biographer Edward Epstein revealed that Angleton was known for using marked cards: Edward Jay Epstein, "Through the Looking Glass - Part 2", http://www.edwardjayepstein.com/archived/looking2.htm

Hoover warns that an imposter may be using Oswald's birth certificate: Memo by J. Edgar Hoover to Office of Security, Department of State, 6/3/60, Warren Commission Document 1114, p. 835.

Marguerite asked if her son was an agent of the US government: Testimony of Marguerite Oswald, Warren Commission Hearings, Volume I, p. 206.

The government finally told Marguerite that her son Lee was alive in the USSR and had an actual address: Id., at p. 207.

The documentary record on Oswald, beginning with the UPI story on the weekend of his defection, was salted with references to his interest in going to Cuba: Peter Dale Scott tracks this history in "The Search for Popov's Mole", Fourth Decade, Vol. 3, Issue 3 (March 1996), an article which stretches out and digs into the depth of the molehunt. Footnote 136 cites a Washington Post story, 11/1/59, where Oswald's sister-in-law says, "He said he wanted to travel a lot and talked about going to Cuba."; the aforementioned Fain report of 5/12/60 that quotes Marguerite as saying that Oswald told her the previous September that he was thinking of going to Cuba; and how Cuba was the first country mentioned on Oswald's 1959 passport application.

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