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Cryptonym: JMHOPE

Definition:
A radio station within range of Havana, probably Radio Swan, based on one of the Swan Islands near Cuba.
Status:
Probable
Discussion:
104-10422-10322: A sample of Bob Wall's signature - he was reviewing records related to the Warren Commission during the Church Committee in 1975.
Sources:

Bartholomew Lee, "Swan Island, Its Radio History Including the CIA and the Revenge of United Fruit", California Historical Radio (2010): http://www.californiahistoricalradio.com/CHRSPix/BartLeeSwan.pdf

"Swan Island, between Honduras and Cuba, amounts to just over three-square miles of very little: coral, palms and big iguanas. But from the standpoint of radio, it does have “location, location, location” and some very interesting radio tales to tell. United Fruit Company used it first as a wireless telegraphy relay station circa 1911. In 1960 through 1968, the American Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) used it as a propaganda and clandestine station against Cuba on short wave and in the broadcast band. As Radio Swan, it broadcast anti-Castro programming and operational messages for the ill-fated Bay of Pigs invasion in 1961.... as Radio Americas, it broadcast propaganda to Cuba, all of which was preceded by a little known CIA pirate radio operation on Swan Island in the previous decade. The (1954) broadcasts featured “radiogames,” the kind of funkspiel so effective for the NAZIs against the British Special Operations Executive (SOE) in Holland. La Voz de Liberacion told The Big Lie, little lies, shams, disinformation, and claimed fake battles won, fake desertions and the like. The funkspiel convinced Col. Arbenz that the invading Guatemalans (who were ragtag U.S. sponsored insurgents, and see Appendix for some of their radio equipment) would defeat his regime. His duly-elected government capitulated and many of its members fled. The coup d’etat, enabled by black ops radio, succeeded so well that it surprised even its originators in the CIA. According to Phillips, a British diplomat concluded that: “The soldiers had nothing to do with it. The war was won by that radio station.”

104-10165-10270: AS HQS AWARE MASH LAST FEW DAYS TRYING TO RESOLVE PROBLEM AMRASP JMHOPE PROGRAM SHOULD BE MENTIONED AND LUIS CONTE AGUERO OBJECTIONS TO SAME

8/31/60, JMASH to Director: AMRASP (FRD Executive Committee) JMHOPE program ran into trouble because of Conte (AMCORE-2) objections to it. Choaden (Phillips) and Gupton (William Kent) and several others all had to engage in negotiations until a settlement could be reached.

Official History of the Bay of Pigs Operation, Volume III: Evolution of CIA's Anti-Castro Policies, 1959 - January 1961 Current Section: Part V: Direct Action Program

Footnotes indicate JMHOPE supplies and equipment were delivered to Swan Island, a tiny spot of land just a few miles from Cuba. The main text states that "the key point in Dave Phillips' propaganda operation was to be the 50,000 watt radio transmitter located on the larger of the two Swan islands": http://www.maryferrell.org/showDoc.html?docId=146518&search=phillips#relPageId=224&tab=page

Official History of the Bay of Pigs Operation, Volume I: Air Operations, March 1960 - April 1961 Current Section: 1. US Government's Anti-Castro Program

"As the major voice of the opposition, it is proposed to establish at least one "gray" U.S.-controlled station. This will probably be on Swan Island, and will employ both high frequency and broadcast band equipment of substantial power. The preparation of the scripts will be done in the U.S. and these will be transmitted electronically to the site for broadcasting."

104-10301-10004 OFFICIAL HISTORY OF THE BAY OF PIGS OPERATION, VOLUME III

"Radio Swan was the most effective of the propaganda activities supported by the Agency; and with station WRUL, New York, these Agency-sponsored radio broadcasts were the most effective means of providing the Cuban population with anti-Castro ammunition...other media activities with which WH/4/PP engaged was the newspaper Avance in Exile and the magazine Bohemia Libre. Both of these were published in Miami by the exile groups, and at one time Bohemia Libre was reputedly the most widely circulated Spanish weekly in the world." WH/4/PP also hired the Lloyd Free organization in 1960 to poll the Cuban people, learning after a thousand interviews that "the great majority of Cubans surveyed felt that both they personally and their country were very much better off than during the days of Batista. The prevailing mood was one of hope and optimism." At page 238: "In an interview with the author of this history, Dave Phillips stated that Enno Hobbing (GPAZURE) had provided the editorial guidance for WH/4's propaganda efforts..."

104-10229-10317: CABLE: CONTINUE FOLLOW UPI LINE WHICH JUST RIGHT

4/15/61 memo from David Phillips at BELL to JMHOPE: "Continue follow UPI line which just right...Presume you broadcasting all day or extra hours. If not begin at once because of 'monumental developments'."

104-10180-10132: Initial Debriefing Of

6/16/61 Debriefing Of AMIRE-1 (almost certainly): He said that while everyone in Cuba followed the stories flowing from Radio Swan, nobody believes them.”

104-10232-10073: CABLE-MEETING TOOK PLACE AFTERNOON 28 AUG. TWO HOUR MEETING VERY CORDIAL AND FRIENDLY

8/29/61 cable from WAVE to Director: AMBUD-1/Miro Cardona "referred to JMHOPE present 'Batistiano' management which constantly engaged conspiring. Said JMHOPE programs must come under AMBUD control and taken away from anti-AMBUD elements."

198-10004-10020: No Title

October 1962, memo from USIA Deputy Director Donald M. Wilson to Edward G. Lansdale, Assistant to DOD Secretary (Special Operations): "Cuban jamming of American broadcasts...is being carried out against the short wave operations of Radio America (formerly Radio Swan) and also against the Spanish language medium wave broadcasts of WGBS in Miami. In the latter case, jamming is so strong that it is also interfering during night time hours with the regular broadcasts of two U.S. commercial stations, WOR of New York and KEEL of Louisiana..."

104-10018-10074: POSSIBLE USE OF DRE TAPE

12/13/63 memo: "In consideration of AMCOUP-1's cooperation with (CIA), Melvin T. WILENSKY may wish to make this tape available to him to be used with a simultaneous translation in his Latin American coverage...JMHOPE would like to relay AMCOUP-1's broadcast." This is about the Aug 63 taped debate between Oswald and Carlos Bringuier of the DRE.

104-10179-10266: DISPATCH: UNAUTHORIZED INTERVIEW OF AMBANG-1 ON REBEL RADIO PROGRAM

2/20/64 memo from Chief of Station, JMWAVE to Chief, Special Affairs Staff: William S. Wibalda is the JMHOPE Program Director who "normally censors all pre-taped programs in advance". Fluteo told Wibalda (Bob Wall, see: https://www.maryferrell.org/showDoc.html?docId=25339#relPageId=2&tab=page) to strictly censor all the broadcasts run by the Rebel Army Radio, who was led by AMLEO-3. Another document shows that Wibalda also handled AMCORE-2, whose radio programs "originate on WRUL and are re-transmitted by JMHOPE". See: http://www.maryferrell.org/showDoc.html?docId=20435&search=WIBALDA_AND+JMHOPE#relPageId=4&tab=page

104-10256-10194: OFFICE MEMORANDUM: CORAL CLEARANCE

April 1970, Andrew St. George, "The Mafia v. the CIA: ",,,mostly Americanized exiles actually manage the broadcasting activities of Radio Americas In Coral Gables and on Swan Island in the Caribbean, where it maintains a tower well within shortwave and medium wave range of both Cuba and Haiti. The CIA agent in charge of programming is known to be an experienced psychological warfare expert, identified as Robert J. Wilkinson."

Contributors:
Peter Dale Scott • Bill Simpich

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