Mrs. Kay Griggs on How the Government Works

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Re: Mrs. Kay Griggs on How the Government Works

Postby admin » Fri Jan 12, 2018 9:25 am

Part 2 of 2

With multiple deployments over the last 13 years, few of the unit’s members are unscathed. About three dozen operators and support personnel have died on combat missions, according to a former senior team member. They include 15 Gold Squadron members and two bomb specialists who were killed in 2011 when a helicopter with the call sign Extortion 17 was shot down in Afghanistan, the most devastating day in Team 6 history.

Blasts from explosions used to breach compounds on raids, repeated assaults and the battering from riding on high-speed assault boats in sea rescues or training have taken a toll. Some men have sustained traumatic brain injuries. “Your body is trashed,” said one recently retired operator. “Your brain is trashed.”

“SEALs are a lot like N.F.L. guys: They never want to say ‘I am taking myself out of the lineup,’” said Dr. John Hart, medical science director at the Center for BrainHealth at the University of Texas at Dallas, which has treated many SEAL patients. “If they send guys back in who already have the effects of a concussion, they are constantly adding a dose of a hit to an existing brain condition. The brain needs sufficient time to heal.”


Early on in the Afghan war, SEAL Team 6 was assigned to protect the Afghan leader Hamid Karzai; one of the Americans was grazed in the head during an assassination attempt on the future president. But in the years that followed, Mr. Karzai became a bitter critic of the United States Special Operations troops, complaining that they routinely killed civilians in raids. He viewed the activities of Team 6 and other units as a boon for Taliban recruiting and eventually tried to block night raids entirely.

SEAL Team 6 was assigned to protect the Afghan leader Hamid Karzai. After an assassination attempt in 2002 in Kandahar, a team member whose head was wounded used his shirt to stanch the bleeding. Credit Ed Wray/Associated Press

Most missions were not lethal. Several Team 6 members said they herded women and children together and knocked men out of the way, with a push or a gun muzzle, to search homes. They frequently took prisoners; a number of detainees had broken noses after SEALs punched them in struggles to subdue them, one officer said.

One former SEAL Team 6 senior leader said that he and others at the command were concerned that the scale and intensity of the violence in Iraq was so great that U.S. operators might be tempted to engage in retaliatory mutilations, a tactic al Qaeda and the Iraqi insurgency sometimes employed. “Iraq was a different kind of war — nothing we’d ever seen,” said the now-retired Team 6 leader. “So many dead bodies, so many, everywhere, and so the potential opportunities for mutilations were great.”...

Yes, we — they committed war crimes. It happens in war. War is an adrenaline rush. After three or four deployments in, you need more to get that stimulation....

“Night after night of kill or be killed. [There was] so much savagery.

-- The Crimes of Seal Team 6, by Matthew Cole

The Team 6 members often operate under the watchful eyes of their commanders — officers at overseas operations centers and at Dam Neck can routinely view live surveillance feeds of raids provided by drones high above — but are also given wide latitude. While Special Operations troops functioned under the same rules of engagement as other military personnel in Afghanistan, Team 6 members routinely performed their missions at night, making life-or-death decisions in dark rooms with few witnesses and beyond the view of a camera.

Operators would use weapons with suppressors to quietly kill enemies as they slept, an act that they defend as no different from dropping a bomb on an enemy barracks. “I snuck into people’s houses while they were sleeping,” Mr. Bissonnette says in his book “No Hero,” written under the pseudonym Mark Owen. “If I caught them with a gun, I killed them, just like all the guys in the command.”

And their decisions tend to be certain. Noting that they shoot to kill, a former noncommissioned officer added that the operators fire “security rounds” into those who are down to ensure that they are dead. (In a 2011 mission on a hijacked yacht off the coast of Africa, one Team 6 member slashed a pirate with a knife and left 91 wounds, according to a medical examiner, after the man and other attackers killed four American hostages. Operators are trained “to slice and dice every major artery,” said one former SEAL.)

The rules boiled down to this, the noncommissioned officer said: “If in your assessment you feel threatened, in a split second, then you’re going to kill somebody.” He described how one SEAL sniper killed three unarmed people, including a small girl, in separate episodes in Afghanistan and told his superiors that he felt they had posed a threat. Legally, that was sufficient. “But that doesn’t fly” in Team 6, the noncommissioned officer said. “You actually have to be threatened.” He added that the sniper was forced out of Team 6.

A half-dozen former officers and enlisted troops who were interviewed said they knew of civilian deaths caused by Team 6. Mr. Slabinski, a former senior enlisted member of SEAL Team 6, said he witnessed Team 6 members mistakenly kill civilians “probably four or five times” during his deployments.

A funeral for Afghans killed in a joint American and Afghan raid in Ghazi Khan in Kunar Province, in December 2009. Credit

Several former officers said they routinely questioned Team 6 operators when their suspicions were raised about unwarranted killings, but they usually found no clear evidence of wrongdoing. “There was no incentive to dig deep on that,” said a former senior Special Operations officer.

“Do I think bad things went on?” another former top officer asked. “Do I think there was more killing than should have been done? Sure.”

“I think the natural inclination was, if it’s a threat, kill it, and later on you realize, ‘Oh, maybe I overassessed the threat,’ ” he said. “Do I think that guys intentionally killed people that didn’t deserve it? I have a hard time believing that.”

Civilian deaths are an inevitable part of every war but in conflicts with no clear battle lines and where enemy fighters are often indistinguishable from noncombatants, some military law experts say, the traditional rules of war have become outdated and new Geneva Convention protocols are necessary. But others bristle at the notion, saying that the longstanding, unambiguous rules of behavior should govern murky, modern combat.

“Emphasizing these lines and rules becomes even more important when you’re fighting a lawless, remorseless enemy,” said Geoffrey S. Corn, the former senior law of war expert for the Army’s Office of the Judge Advocate General and now a professor at South Texas College of Law. “That is when the instinct for revenge is going to be strong. And war is not about revenge.”

Near the end of an Afghan deployment by Team 6’s Blue Squadron, which concluded in early 2008, elders complained to the British general whose forces controlled Helmand Province. He immediately called Capt. Scott Moore, commander of SEAL Team 6, saying that two elders had reported that the SEALs killed civilians in a village, according to a former Team 6 senior member.

Captain Moore confronted those leading the mission, which was intended to capture or kill a Taliban figure code-named Objective Pantera.

When Captain Moore asked what had happened, the squadron commander, Peter G. Vasely, denied that operators had killed any noncombatants. He said they had killed all the men they encountered because they all had guns, according to the former Team 6 member and a military official. Captain Vasely, who now oversees the regular SEAL teams based on the East Coast, declined to comment through a spokesman.

Later that night, after Blue Squadron’s assaulters had successfully carried out the raid, killing three or four armed men and recovering weapons and explosives, Vasely and Slabinski conducted a walk-through of the compound. Vasely, who was wearing night-vision goggles, looked through a window and saw one of his operators, his back turned, squatting over the body of a dead militant. Vasely later told investigators he saw the operator moving his hand back and forth over the militant’s neck in a sawing motion. Alarmed at seeing what he believed was a decapitation, he told Slabinski to go inside and see what the young operator was doing. By the time Slabinski entered the room where the dead militant lay, according to three former SEAL Team 6 leaders, the operator had severed much of the dead man’s neck.

Slabinski did not report the decapitation, however. He told Vasely that the operator had been trying to remove the dead fighter’s chest rack, a small vest that can hold ammunition and clips. Slabinski told Vasely, and later, Navy investigators, that there had been “no foul play.”

After leaving the compound and returning to their base in Kandahar province, Vasely reported to Moore, his superior officer, that he believed he had witnessed a war crime, a mutilation. Vasely told Moore he wanted an investigation into the incident. Moore, sitting in his office in Virginia Beach, pressed Vasely: What had he actually seen? Was there another explanation?

Moore told his deputy, Szymanski, who was in Afghanistan, to sort things out. Ten days later, the internal JSOC investigation was closed. The Naval Criminal Investigative Service then opened an investigation but was forced to rely on photographs and witness statements because active hostilities made the alleged crime scene inaccessible. When investigators approached the operator accused of mutilating the dead fighter, he exercised his right to remain silent and his right to counsel. A few days after the attempted interview, investigators obtained photos purporting to be of the dead fighter. No cuts were visible in the photos, according to a military official who has reviewed the file. Three weeks after the incident, NCIS closed its investigation, concluding that there was no evidence the SEAL had violated the laws of armed conflict. But according to multiple SEAL sources, the incident did in fact occur.

Szymanski, according to these sources, was directed by Moore to make the episode disappear. “Tim took a dive,” said a former noncommissioned SEAL officer, and it was “at Moore’s direction.”

-- The Crimes of Seal Team 6, by Matthew Cole

Captain Moore asked the Joint Special Operations Command to investigate the episode. About that time, the command received reports that dozens of witnesses in a village were alleging that American forces had engaged in summary executions.

Another former senior Team 6 member contended later that Mr. Slabinski, Blue Squadron’s command master chief, gave pre-mission guidance that every male at the target be killed. Mr. Slabinski denied that, saying there was no policy to leave all men dead. “I didn’t ever convey that to the guys,” he said in an interview.

He said that around the time of that raid he had been disturbed after witnessing one of the younger operators slashing at the throat of a dead Taliban fighter. “It appeared he was mutilating a body,” Mr. Slabinski said, adding that he quickly yelled, “Stop what you’re doing!”

The Naval Criminal Investigative Service later concluded the operator might have been cutting off gear from the dead fighter’s chest. But Team 6 leaders said they were worried that some operators were getting out of control, and the one involved in the episode was sent back to the United States. Mr. Slabinski, suspecting that his men had not been following the rules of engagement properly, gathered them for what he called a “very stern speech.”

Within two weeks of the apparent beheading, Moore deployed to Afghanistan. While he was there, he confronted the Blue Squadron troop and the operator who’d tried to behead the Taliban fighter. A former SEAL Team 6 leader who has knowledge of the episode told me Moore shamed Slabinski and the squadron for their conduct. That was the only punishment. (The Intercept is withholding the name of the operator, who believed he was following an order. He remains on active duty and has not responded to requests for comment.)

-- The Crimes of Seal Team 6, by Matthew Cole

“If any of you feel a need to do any retribution, you should call me,” he recalled telling them. “There’s no one that could authorize that other than me.” He said his message was intended to convey that permission would never come because such conduct was inappropriate. But he conceded that perhaps some of his men may have misunderstood.

JSOC cleared the squadron of any wrongdoing in the Pantera operation, according to two former Team 6 members. It is not clear how many Afghans were killed in the raid or exactly where it happened, though a former officer said he believed it was just south of Lashkar Gah, the capital of Helmand Province.

But the killings prompted a high-level discussion about how, in a country where many men carried guns, Team 6 could “guarantee that we’re only going after the real bad guys,” one of the former senior team leaders said.

In other inquiries, which were usually handled by JSOC, not Navy investigators, no one faced any charges. Typically, men were sent home when concerns arose; three, for example, were sent back to Dam Neck after roughing up a detainee during an interrogation, one former officer said, as were some team members involved in questionable killings.

More than a year later, another mission spurred strong protests from Afghans. Just after midnight on Dec. 27, 2009, dozens of American and Afghan troops landed in helicopters several miles from the small village of Ghazi Khan in Kunar Province, and hiked to the village in darkness. By the time they left, 10 residents had been killed.

By Joe Burgess, The New York Times

What happened that night is still in dispute. The purpose of the mission was to capture or kill a senior Taliban operative, but it was quickly apparent that no Taliban leaders were present at the target. The mission had been based on faulty intelligence, a problem that bedeviled United States military operations even after years in Afghanistan. A former governor of the province investigated, and accused the Americans of killing unarmed schoolboys.

According to several former SEAL Team 6 leaders, it was JSOC commander Gen. Stanley McChrystal who ordered the increased operational tempo and pushed SEAL Team 6, including Howard, to conduct more frequent raids to help wipe out the insurgency in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Howard, according to two of his former operators, was more willing than previous officers to greenlight operations based on “weak” intelligence, leading to more raids and strikes.

-- The Crimes of Seal Team 6, by Matthew Cole

The United Nations mission in Afghanistan issued a statement saying that an initial investigation had concluded that “eight of those killed were students enrolled in local schools.”

American military spokesmen initially said that those who died were part of an insurgent cell that had been building improvised explosive devices. Eventually, they backed off that claim. But some American military officials still insist that all of the youths had guns and were tied to the Taliban. One NATO statement said that the people who carried out the raid were “nonmilitary in nature,” seemingly a reference to the C.I.A., which was in charge of the operation.

But Team 6 members had also participated in that mission. As part of the covert Omega Program, they joined an assault force that included C.I.A. paramilitary officers and Afghan troops trained by the spy agency.

By then, the program that had begun at the dawn of the Afghan war had changed. Forays into Pakistan were limited because it was difficult to operate there without being noticed by Pakistani soldiers and spies, so missions were mostly confined to the Afghan side of the border.

Over time, General McChrystal, who became the top American commander in Afghanistan, responded to Mr. Karzai’s complaints about civilian deaths by tightening the rules on night raids and scaling back the pace of special operations.

After years of refining techniques to sneak up on enemy compounds, Team 6 members were often required to “call out” before attacking a site, akin to a sheriff announcing through a bullhorn, “Come out with your hands up.”

Mr. Slabinski said that civilian casualties occurred most often during the “call out” operations, which were meant to mitigate exactly such losses. Enemy combatants, he said, would sometimes send out family members and then shoot from behind them, or give civilians flashlights and tell them to point out American positions.

Just eight months after taking over JSOC, after a series of complaints from the Afghan government over special operations night raids and civilian deaths, McRaven sought to pull Team 6 back from its overly aggressive stance. He ordered a pause in most SEAL and JSOC operations over a two-week period in February 2009. Although the stoppage was not limited to the SEALs, his former unit pushed back against a new set of operational guidelines.

First, the SEALs would now be required to do “call outs” before entering a compound. The intention was to permit women and children to get out of harm’s way before operators conducted their assault. The operators were unhappy about the new restriction, arguing that call outs gave up the tactical advantage of surprise. McRaven’s other directive required a more extensive post-operation review to document and justify combatant deaths. Previously, the command had required only a frontal shot and a profile of each dead militant. The new rule required a full photographic accounting of who was killed, photos of the entire body, where the target was when he dropped, what weapons he held, the vantage point of the operator when he fired, and other atmospherics.

This directive had one primary purpose: to protect U.S. forces from accusations of unjustified killings by Afghan government officials. The photos and other review documents could be shared with local officials to justify operations. But the directive had another benefit. With more extensive photographic documentation, SEAL operators had less time to fire unnecessary rounds into the dead, and they had to use the photos to explain why they fired their weapon. As a result, photographs of canoed enemy fighters virtually ceased to appear in after-action reports.

MCRAVEN’S NEW ORDERS set off a struggle between the JSOC commander and SEAL Team 6’s enlisted ranks that played out in a series of high-profile hostage rescues ordered by President Obama. The first and best-known was the rescue of Capt. Richard Phillips, captain of the commercial vessel the “Maersk Alabama,” in April 2009 from Somali pirates in the Indian Ocean. Red Squadron snipers killed three pirates who were holding Phillips in a lifeboat. But McRaven, who commanded the operation, had not ordered the snipers to fire, and neither had a SEAL Team 6 officer. The sniper team leader acted under his own “emergency assault” authority to kill the pirates as soon as all three could be taken out at the same time. McRaven, who was informed of the killings only after he knew Phillips was safe, was incensed.

After the operation, $30,000 in cash, which the pirates had stashed in a lifeboat, went missing. The SEALs were suspected of taking the money. The FBI and NCIS investigated two members of Red Squadron and conducted polygraphs, but the money was never recovered and neither of the SEALs was charged.

Then, in October 2010, SEAL Team 6 set out to rescue a British aid worker named Linda Norgrove, who had been taken captive in Afghanistan. The operation, code-named ANSTRUTHER, an homage to Norgrove’s Scottish heritage, was authorized by British Prime Minister David Cameron. The operation commanded high-level interest because Norgrove, though in Afghanistan as an aid worker for DAI, an American NGO, secretly worked with Britain’s MI-6, according to four U.S. military and intelligence sources. Two of these sources told me that the British government informed SEAL Team 6 mission planners that Norgrove worked for the spy agency, and that they had been tracking her movements since the abduction. Asked for comment, the British government told The Intercept that it does not comment on security matters and would “neither confirm nor deny” that Norgrove worked for the intelligence agency.

During a late-night raid at a northern Kunar compound, Silver Squadron operators killed several captors but accidentally killed Norgrove when an inexperienced SEAL threw a fragment grenade at one of the captors.

The operation’s team leader believed that a suicide vest had been detonated by one of the captors, and two Silver Squadron operators initially withheld the fact that a grenade had been thrown. Consequently, the SEALs initially reported to JSOC senior leaders that Norgrove had been killed by her captors.

-- The Crimes of Seal Team 6, by Matthew Cole

Mr. O’Neill, the former Team 6 member, agreed that the rules could be frustrating. “What we found was, the more latitude for collateral damage that they gave us, the more effective we were because we’re not going to take advantage of it but we know we’re not going to be second-guessed,” he said in an interview. “When there were more rules, it did get more difficult.”


Years ago, before the Afghan night raids and the wartime deployments, SEAL Team 6 trained constantly to rescue hostages — dangerous, difficult missions they never got a chance to perform before 2001. Since then, the unit has attempted at least 10 rescues, which have been among its most celebrated successes and bitterest failures.

Operators say that in rescues — considered “no-fail” missions — they have to move faster and expose themselves to greater risk than on any other type of operation so that they can protect hostages from being shot or otherwise harmed. The SEALs often end up killing most of the captors.

Clockwise from top left: Pfc. Jessica Lynch was removed on a stretcher after being found in 2003 in Nasiriya, Iraq; the lifeboat in which Richard Phillips was held captive in 2009; the Danish hostage Poul Hagen Thisted, who was rescued in Somalia in 2012; as was his colleague Jessica Buchanan, an American. Credit Department of Defense; US Navy; Danish Refugee Council, via Agence Frane-Presse--Getty Images

The first high-profile rescue came in 2003, when SEAL Team 6 operators helped retrieve Pfc. Jessica Lynch, who had been injured, captured and held in a hospital, during the early days of the Iraq war.

Six years later, Team 6 members jumped out of cargo planes into the Indian Ocean with their specially designed assault boats in advance of the mission to rescue Richard Phillips, the captain of the Maersk Alabama, a container ship hijacked by Somali pirates. The operators, captured in a video shown by Mr. O’Neill, parachuted with swim fins strapped over their boots after releasing four boats — small, fast and equipped with stealth features to evade radar — that were each suspended by a canopy of multiple parachutes. SEAL snipers eventually killed three of the pirates.

In 2012, operators sky-dived into Somalia to free an American aid worker, Jessica Buchanan, and her Danish colleague, Poul Hagen Thisted. JSOC considers its performance as the standard for such missions. The SEALs used a free-fall parachuting technique called “HAHO,” for high altitude-high opening, in which they jump from a high altitude and steer their way on the wind for many miles to cross a border secretly, an exercise so risky that over the years several men died while in training.

Ms. Buchanan recalled that four of the kidnappers were within 15 feet of her when the Team 6 members approached under cover of darkness. They shot and killed all nine captors while rescuing the aid workers. “Until they identified themselves, I did not believe a rescue was possible,” Ms. Buchanan said in an interview.

In October 2010, one Team 6 member erred during an attempt to rescue Linda Norgrove, a 36-year old British aid worker being held by the Taliban. Disaster struck in the first two minutes, after operators jumped from helicopters in the mountains of Kunar Province and slid down 90 feet of braided rope to a steep slope, according to two senior military officials.

As they sprinted in the dark toward the Taliban compound, the newest member of the team was confused, he later told investigators. His gun had jammed. “Thinking a million miles a minute,” he said, he threw a grenade at what he believed were a pair of fighters hiding in a ditch.

Linda Norgrove, a British aid worker, died during a rescue attempt by SEALs in Kunar Province, Afghanistan.

But after an exchange of gunfire that killed several Taliban captors, the SEALs found the hostage — wearing dark clothing and a head scarf — dead in the ditch. Initially, the operator who threw the grenade and another unit member reported that Ms. Norgrove was killed by an explosive suicide vest. That story quickly fell apart. Surveillance video shows that she died almost instantly from fragmentation wounds to her head and back caused by the grenade blast, the investigative report noted.

A joint inquiry by the American and British governments concluded that the operator who had thrown the grenade had violated procedures for hostage rescues. He was forced out of Team 6, although permitted to remain in another SEAL unit.

A rescue operation two years later succeeded in releasing an American physician, though at great cost. One night in December 2012, a group of Team 6 operators wearing night-vision goggles burst into a compound in Afghanistan where Taliban militants were holding Dr. Dilip Joseph, who had been working with an aid organization. The first operator to enter was felled by a shot to the head, and the other Americans responded with brutal efficiency, killing all five of the captors.

But Dr. Joseph and military officials offer sharply different accounts of how the raid unfolded. The physician said in an interview that a 19-year-old named Wallakah was the sole kidnapper to survive the initial assault. He had been subdued by the SEAL operators and sat on the ground, hands around his knees, his head down, the doctor remembered. Wallakah, he believed, was the one who had shot the Team 6 operator.

Minutes later, while waiting to board a helicopter to freedom, Dr. Joseph said, one of his SEAL rescuers guided him back into the house, where he saw in the moonlight that Wallakah was lying in a pool of blood, dead. “I remember those things as clear as day,” the doctor said.

Military officials, speaking only on background about the classified operation, contended that all of the captors were quickly killed after the SEAL team entered and Wallakah had never been taken prisoner. They also said that Dr. Joseph had seemed disoriented at the time and never re-entered the house, and questioned whether he could have seen what was happening on the dark night.

Dr. Dilip Joseph describes the night he was rescued by SEAL Team 6 after being kidnapped in 2012 by the Taliban in Afghanistan. His account is disputed by military officials. By Leslye Davis on Publish Date June 4, 2015.

Two years later, Dr. Joseph remains grateful for his rescue and the sacrifice made by Petty Officer Nicolas D. Checque, the team member killed on the mission. But he still wonders what happened with Wallakah.

“It took me weeks to come to terms with the efficiency of the rescue,” Dr. Joseph said. “It was so surgical.”


From a string of firebases along the Afghan border, Team 6 regularly sent Afghan locals into the tribal areas of Pakistan to collect intelligence. The team transformed the large, brightly painted “jingle” trucks popular in the region into mobile spying stations, hiding sophisticated eavesdropping equipment in the back of the trucks and using Pashtuns to drive them over the border.

Outside the mountains of Pakistan, the team also ventured into the country’s southwest desert, including the volatile Baluchistan region. One mission nearly ended in disaster when militants fired a rocket-propelled grenade from a doorway, causing the roof of their compound to collapse and a Team 6 sniper atop it to fall through onto a small group of fighters. A fellow American sniper nearby quickly killed them, one former operator recounted.

Beyond Afghanistan and Pakistan, members of Team 6’s Black Squadron were scattered around the world on spying missions. Originally Team 6’s sniper unit, Black Squadron was reconfigured after the Sept. 11 attacks to conduct “advance force operations,” military jargon for intelligence gathering and other clandestine activities in preparation for a Special Operations mission.

It was a particularly popular concept at the Pentagon under former Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld. By the middle of last decade, General McChrystal had designated Team 6 to take on an expanded role in global intelligence-gathering missions, and Black Squadron operatives deployed to American embassies from sub-Saharan Africa to Latin America to the Middle East.

Navy SEAL training exercises carried out in Coronado, Calif., include rapid descents from helicopters. Credit Stephanie Freid-Perenchio

SEAL Team 6 used diplomatic pouches, the regular shipments of classified documents and other material to American diplomatic posts, to get weapons to Black Squadron operators stationed overseas, said a former member. In Afghanistan, Black Squadron operators wore tribal dress and sneaked into villages to plant cameras and listening devices and interview residents in the days or weeks before night raids, according to several former Team 6 members.

The unit sets up front companies to provide cover for Black Squadron operators in the Middle East, and runs floating spying stations disguised as commercial boats off the coasts of Somalia and Yemen. Black Squadron members, working from the American Embassy in Sana, the Yemeni capital, were central to the hunt for Anwar al-Awlaki, the radical cleric and American citizen who had become affiliated with Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula. He was killed in 2011 by a C.I.A. drone.

One former member of Black Squadron said that in Somalia and Yemen, operators were not allowed to pull the trigger unless the highest-value targets were in their sights. “Outside Iraq and Afghanistan we were not throwing any nets,” the former member said. “It was totally different.”

Black Squadron has something the rest of SEAL Team 6 does not: female operatives. Women in the Navy are admitted to Black Squadron and sent overseas to gather intelligence, usually working in embassies with male counterparts. One former SEAL Team 6 officer said that male and female members of Black Squadron would often work together in pairs. It is called “profile softening,” making the couple appear less suspicious to hostile intelligence services or militant groups.

Black Squadron now has more than 100 members, its growth coinciding with the expansion of perceived threats around the world. It also reflects the shift among American policy makers. Anxious about using shadow warriors in the years after the 1993 “Black Hawk Down” debacle in Mogadishu, Somalia, government officials today are willing to send units like SEAL Team 6 to conflicts, whether the United States chooses to acknowledge its role or not.

“When I was in, we were always chasing wars,” said Mr. Zinke, the congressman and former Team 6 member. “These guys found them.”

Matthew Rosenberg and Richard A. Oppel Jr. contributed reporting. Research was contributed by Kitty Bennett, Alain Delaquérière, Susan Campbell Beachy and William M. Arkin.

A version of this article appears in print on June 7, 2015, on Page A1 of the New York edition with the headline: The Secret History of SEAL Team 6. Order Reprints| Today's Paper|Subscribe
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Re: Mrs. Kay Griggs on How the Government Works

Postby admin » Tue Feb 13, 2018 1:21 am

Military Court to Review Order Forcing Soldiers to Serve Under United Nations
by Michael New Legal Defense
26 June 2012



(District of Columbia) -- The Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces (CAAF) has given the U.S. Army a deadline of July 2 to enter arguments concerning the court-martial of an American soldier who refused to wear a United Nations uniform.

In 1996 the Army court-martialed Specialist Michael New, a medic serving in the 3rd Infantry Division in Germany, after he refused to wear a United Nations uniform and deploy on a U.N. mission into Macedonia. Mr. New was found guilty of disobeying a lawful order and sentenced to a Bad Conduct Discharge.

During his trial, New's attorneys requested the Army to provide a classified executive order entitled Presidential Decision Directive 25 (PDD25) that had been represented by the Army to New as one of the legal bases for the order issued by then-President Bill Clinton. The Army prosecutor refused, whereupon the military judge ordered the prosecutor to show the classified document to New's attorneys. The prosecutor then produced a document representing it to be the classified version of PDD 25. Unknown to the military judge and New's defense counsel, the document produced was not, in fact, the classified PDD 25. New did not discover this until 2009, well after the court-martial and appeals, when through a Mandatory Review process New got a hold of the real classified document.

After review of the classified document, New's attorneys concluded that the document proves that New was right in alleging that President Clinton did not have the authority to make the deployment, for it was in conflict with the United Nations Participation Act of 1945.

"The Army had that document, and that document provided exculpatory evidence in favor of specialist New, and they withheld it," Herb Titus, one of New's attorneys said. "Withholding evidence favorable to a defendant in a court-martial violates not only due process but military discovery rules."

Because the evidence did not come to light until after New's court-martial, and through no fault of New, New has filed a Petition of Coram Nobis with the military courts, asking the courts to overturn his conviction and bad conduct discharge as the first step to restoring New's military honor.

According to G. Gordon Liddy, who broke the case on national radio in 1995, "This is a threshold case involving questions never before answered concerning the Constitutional limitations on presidents and Congress, as well as questions about the American military and their role in international military actions."
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Re: Mrs. Kay Griggs on How the Government Works

Postby admin » Tue Feb 13, 2018 1:34 am

Timothy Mcveigh's Mom Speaks From Unwanted Spot In Limelight
by Charley Reese
Orlando Sentinel
February 9, 1997



The mother of Timothy McVeigh, the accused bomber of the Oklahoma City federal building, has a message for you: She hopes you never have to go through what she and her family have had to endure.

''Hopefully, none of you ever have to walk in our shoes, but if you do, be prepared for the media blitz, the harassment, intimidation and lies of many people who supposedly know it all,'' she wrote in an open letter to the public entrusted to me.

As far as I know, I'm the only journalist Tim's mom has agreed to speak to since his arrest about two years ago. The only previous public statement she made was two years ago when, in a written statement read by a deputy, she expressed her ''deep sympathy for the victims and their families.''

After two years of being involuntarily thrust into the news-media/government spotlight, however, she has very little sympathy for the press or the government. She recounts her frustrations in a long letter she handed me in her modest home in South Florida. It is written in the second person, addressing either the public or particular people she writes about. The letter is too long to quote in its entirety, but I will summarize some of it and quote the rest. After all, she's entitled to have her say.

She is incensed that it has been widely reported that she divorced McVeigh's father when Tim was 10 years old. When the first article appeared, she complained about the errors and was told the paper would stick by its reporter's secondhand information from a neighbor and other articles (making the same mistake) in the electronic data base. Now think about this. This tabloid rejected firsthand testimony from a principal involved in favor of hearsay.

Tim's mom gave me a copy of her divorce decree. She was separated in 1984 and divorced in 1986. Tim was born in 1968. As she stated in her letter, ''You do the math.'' Furthermore, she states in her letter, she did not leave Lockport, N.Y., where Tim and his father lived until 1989. In other words, Tim was 18 - not 10 as widely reported - when she divorced his father and 21 before she left the small town where Tim lived with his father.

Next she turns to a South Florida reporter who obtained references she supplied to an employer and called at least one of the people, pretending to be a prospective employer, and asking questions about her personal life.

''Then at the end of the conversation you (the reporter) told her you had to inform her that you were a reporter with the local newspaper here. She immediately hung up and reported the incident to me. Deception and fraud?''

''And shame on the person in personnel who gave him my files. I hope you received an incentive for your deed. You should be fired.''

Then she turns to an unidentified reporter in Lockport who, she states, has quit his job to work full time on a book about her son and his family.

''Apparently you have received an advance from somewhere to pursue your quest for fame and fortune. No one in my family has agreed to speak to you and will not in the future. I understand you are telling people otherwise. You had better check and double-check your so-called facts.''

The next part of the letter tells about people talking about her in the stores, neighbors watching her every move. She states, ''Then a woman goes up to another neighbor's house up the street and tells him, 'I quit, I am tired of spying,' and he retorts, 'Then you will go to jail.' ''

Remember, Tim's mother, a working woman in her early 50s, is no millionaire celebrity who gets paid to be hounded everywhere she goes. She's just a working woman and mother trying to lead a normal life. McVeigh's arrest in the bombing case caused an explosion in her life, so that she was not only suddenly the focus of attention by the national press but also by government agents.

In Tuesday's column, Tim's mother will talk about the government and the question of McVeigh's guilt or innocence.
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Re: Mrs. Kay Griggs on How the Government Works

Postby admin » Tue Feb 13, 2018 2:05 am

Ronald D. Ray
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 2/12/18



Colonel Ray USMC

Ronald D. Ray is a former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense under the Reagan administration. He is also a decorated Vietnam veteran and Colonel. He is now a practicing attorney in Kentucky.[1]


Colonel Ray was born in Hazard, Kentucky on October 30, 1942. He received his B.A. from Centre College of Kentucky in 1964, and his juris doctorate, Magna Cum Laude, in 1971 from the University of Louisville School of Law, where he was Salutatorian in his class. Colonel Ray was a Partner with Greenebaum, Doll & McDonald for 15 years, and until 1986 headed the Labor and Employee Relations section of the firm. Colonel Ray was Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of Louisville School of Law for many years.

In 1964, Colonel Ray was accepted in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, serving as a Corps Leader and one of the first Peace officers ashore for the evacuation of civilians during the Dominican Republic Crisis in 1967. Corps Leader Ray later served as an Infantry Battalion Advisor to the Vietnamese Marine Corps in the Republic of Vietnam during 1967 and 68, participating in combat operations throughout South Vietnam including major joint operations during the TET Offensive, Hue City, Coronado II and Paddington. During his active military service, Colonel Ray was awarded many decorations, including two Silver Stars for gallantry, a Bronze Star Medal with Combat "V", the Purple Heart, the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry and the Vietnamese Honor Medal.

Colonel Ray resigned his active commission in 1969 and joined the Marine Corps Reserve, where he held a variety of command and staff positions, including command of combat and combat service support units in Louisville and Ft. Knox, Kentucky. In 1974, he was certified as a Staff Judge Advocate, and graduated with honors from the Naval Justice School in Newport, Rhode Island, and attended many senior level military schools, the NATO Defense College in England and the National Defense University. He served as Deputy Director for Field Operations for the Division of History and Museums of the Marine Corps. Colonel Ray retired from the Marine Corps Reserve on June 30, 1994, and he is currently working on a history of the Vietnam War.

In 1984, Colonel Ray was appointed the first Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense (Guard/Reserve) in Washington, D.C., which Pentagon appointment included responsibility for staffing and organizing a national management structure for exercising policy guidance and overall supervision of the 1,800,000 members of this nation's National Guard & Reserve Forces. In 1985, he received the National Eagle Award from the National Guard Association for exemplary public service while in the Pentagon.

In 1990, President Bush appointed Colonel Ray to the American Battle Monuments Commission, which is responsible for commemorating the services of American Armed Forces through the erection of memorials and maintaining cemeteries. In 1992, Colonel Ray was appointed by the President to the Commission on the Assignment of Women in the Armed Forces. Colonel Ray founded and served as the Chairman of the Kentucky Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund, which privately raised more than one million dollars to build and dedicate a unique granite sundial as a memorial to Vietnam veterans in Frankfort, Kentucky.

Colonel Ray was the lead counsel in the three cases brought in 2000 by the ACLU against Kentucky's Pulaski and McCreary County Judges and Harlan County Schools seeking to suppress or censor the public posting of official and historical American political documents including: an excerpt from the Declaration of Independence; the Preamble to the Kentucky Constitution; America's national motto "In God We Trust;" a copy of the February 2, 1983, Congressional Record, which contains the text of the Ten Commandments; a proclamation by President Abraham Lincoln; a proclamation by President Ronald Reagan; and the Mayflower Compact.

In 2009 Colonel Ray joined with 96 Kentucky State Senators and 35 State Representatives, The Family Trust Foundation of Kentucky and The American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky in two cases brought against Kentucky's Homeland Security Law by the American Atheists, Inc. and the ACLU seeking to remove the name of "Almighty God" from Kentucky's Homeland Security Law.[2][3]

Colonel Ray was selected for Who's Who in America and Who's Who in America Law. He has appeared on multiple national television news broadcasts including: ABC World News Tonight, Larry King Live, Hannity and Combs, Fox and Friends, The Today Show, Fox News, Crossfire, and a number of national radio broadcasts. Today Colonel Ray writes and speaks on public and Constitutional issues of national interest such as America's Christian Heritage, "Exemplary Conduct" in the U.S. Armed Forces, the true relationship between Christianity and Politics, the Second Amendment, history of the Vietnam War and MIA/POWs, and a variety of defense and current policy subjects.


In 1993 Colonel Ray published a piece in the conservative conservative Indiana Policy Review in which he wrote that "homosexuals are not as a group able bodied," and went on to describe "'gay" sexual practices" in detail. The article came to light during the 2016 U.S. Presidential campaign as the journal was published at the time of the article by eventual Vice President Mike Pence. [4]


Silver Star (two) [1]
Bronze Star [1]
Purple Heart [1]


1. Colonel Ronald D. Ray Archived May 23, 2006, at the Wayback Machine.
2. A Vietnam veteran on war and terror Archived December 27, 2012, at the Wayback Machine.
3. Kentucky court weighing case involving God reference in homeland security law Archived March 31, 2012, at the Wayback Machine.
4. Mike Pence ... Published Anti-Gay Articles In Indiana Journal
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Re: Mrs. Kay Griggs on How the Government Works

Postby admin » Tue Feb 13, 2018 3:29 am

Military Necessity and Homosexuality: Our “New Gender Order” Is Not Fighting Fit
by Ronald D. Ray
Indiana Policy Review
August, 1993



“A frequent recurrence to fundamental principles is absolutely necessary to preserve the blessings of liberty, and to maintain a free government.”

-- Massachusetts Bill of Rights, 1780

The defense of the military ban against homosexuals rests historically and legally upon government deference, particularly by Congress and the federal courts and the U.S. Supreme Court, to the military on the basis of “military necessity.” Its singular mission is, as stated by the Secretary of Defense, on March 26, 1992, “to fight and win our wars,” to defend America from enemies foreign and domestic.

Anything or anyone who interferes with or inhibits the military’s ability to accomplish that high calling with the fewest casualties is a threat to national security. The military is an entirely separate society apart from the civilian society and necessarily governed by different rules and standards. Soldiers are recruited and selected from classified groups based on military selection criteria that were developed over time and proven on the battlefield. First and foremost the battlefield demands that young recruits between the ages of 18 to 26 be ablebodied. The military “discriminates” against classifications or groups such as convicted felons, non-high school graduates, drug users, the physically disabled, etc., because those groups have characteristics shown to be unfit for military service.

For example, there is absolutely no reason based upon military necessity’s battlefield standard to assign women, who as a group physically have one-third less strength, agility, speed and endurance than men, to the combat arms. This is especially true when the military is reducing forces and ample numbers of able-bodied men are available for combat service. The extraordinary physical demands of combat on land, sea and air are unchanging and are still critically important in war. Military leaders declare that the battlefield has not become less demanding because of today’s advanced technology, but rather more lethal.

There is also no sound military reason based upon this “military necessity” standard for allowing open homosexuals to serve in the military. In recent weeks the press has dealt with a variety of disruptions to the military’s good order and discipline raised by the possible elimination of the ban: morale and cohesion; lack of privacy; fraternization; favoritism; sexual harassment; etc. While these are important considerations, the decision is fundamentally flawed for one primary reason: The homosexuals are not as a group able-bodied. They are known to carry extremely high rates of disease brought on because of the nature of their sexual practices and the promiscuity which is a hallmark of their lifestyle.

Evidence to this fact abounds: The August 3, 1992, issue of Newsweek reported that 87 percent of all AIDS cases in adults over the age of 24 are attributable to drug use needle-sharing and male-to-male sex. Of AIDS patients aged 13 to 24, 77 percent admit to male-to-male sex. A compilation of recent health studies [1] shows that homosexuals account for 80 percent of America’s most serious Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD); despite the fact that they account for less than 2 percent of the total American population. Youths engaging in homosexual behavior are 23 times more likely to contract a sexually transmitted disease than strictly heterosexual you6ths. Lesbians are 19 times more likely than heterosexual women to have had syphilis, twice as likely to suffer from genital warts, and four times as likely to have scabies. Male homosexuals are 14 times more likely to have had syphilis than male heterosexuals. They are also thousands of times more likely to contract AIDS. According to the Centers for Disease Control, at least two-thirds of all AIDS cases in the United States are directly attributable to homosexual conduct. [2]

It is often argued by homosexual advocates that this destructive behavior is merely a reaction to society’s unwillingness to accept homosexuality. But San Francisco, with its open validation of homosexuality, has an overabundance of the social and medical woes associated with homosexuality.

If America’s elected officials permit homosexuals to openly serve in the military with America’s sons and daughters, knowing full well that homosexuals carry, in overwhelming numbers, a disease more deadly than war’s killing fields, they will answer to America’s families. To place American servicemen and women at risk with no military purpose or benefit is very, very wrong.

Homosexual Practices

“Skin color is a benign, non-behavioral characteristic. Sexual orientation is perhaps the most profound of human behavioral characteristics. Comparison of the two is a convenient but invalid argument.” [3]

-- General Colin Powell, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Sexuality may be the most profound and powerful life force, requiring strong discipline and commitment to be channeled in healthy ways or it can become destructive and deadly. Early in the 1970s, Dr. William H. Masters of St. Louis announced to the nation’s press that homosexuality is “natural” and by direct implication a normal sexual act or sexual condition. In so doing, Dr. Masters had “raised the status of the anus to the level of the vagina. What was until then a purely excretory organ had become a genital one – by decree.” [4] With the onslaught of AIDS there has been a blizzard of educational information on “safe sex” precautions for homosexuals printed and disseminated largely with government funds. An understanding of homosexual practices drawn from information in the “safe sex” materials may prove helpful to America as it deliberates the suitability of homosexuals serving openly in the military.

Beside the general “gay” sexual practices of mutual masturbation and fellatio/cunnilingus, other homosexual practices which are common in the “lifestyle” are more bizarre: Anal intercourse that often causes tearing or bruising of the anus or rectal wall, which is only one cell thick and not designed for this extreme activity. [5] Anal penetration (penetration of the anus by hand, arm, or foreign objects) – In 1983, well over a third of homosexuals admitted to participating in “fisting” – the insertion of hands or arms through the anus. Anal penetration by large objects (including bottles, cucumbers, carrots, light bulbs, dildos and other such “toys”) greatly increases tearing, bruising, and the risk of infection. It also debilitates the sphincter muscles which control the anus and bowel movements. [6] According to one medical study, ‘fist fornication’ is becoming increasingly common. [7] About 80 percent of homosexuals regularly use their tongues to stimulate the anuses of their partners, thus ingesting biologically significant amounts of fecal matter. [8] According to one clinical study: 92 percent of these men reported that they practiced anilingus [rimming]. This practice is particularly associated with the high incidence among homosexuals of Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B. [9] About 30 percent of homosexuals admitted to having “showered” in the urine of others, and about 20 percent admitted to ingesting urine. About 15 percent said they regularly seek to be urinated upon, and over 8 percent said they regularly ingest it. [10] In the latest national random survey, 17 percent of homosexuals admitted to having eaten or handled the feces of their partners, and 12 percent reported to giving and receiving enemas for sexual pleasure. [11] Sadomasochism – At least a quarter of homosexuals admit to ritual domination of partners, which involves the use of physical force, violence, and sometimes mutilation as a sexual stimulant.

The focus of male homosexuals is upon the anus. Contact with feces is an anathema to soldiers. Every soldier’s first overnight in the field includes instruction in basic field sanitation, avoiding the diseases that come from mishandling feces – and yet the military is being asked to lift the ban on a classification of people whose sexual practices involve oral-anal contact, and the ingestion of human feces. The prohibitions against mishandling feces in the field date at least from biblical times.

Politically Correct Science

”A latrine outside the camp is required, and a spade, to cover up your filth.”

-- Deuteronomy 23:13

The military is fully aware that the reports for nearly 10 years show that AIDS is still spread predominately by male-to-male sex. Others in academia, science, popular entertainment and the media appear to have misled the Pentagon and the American people about the “harmlessness” of homosexuality. On the contrary, homosexuality is a grave threat to not only our nation’s health but also our national security in several ways. Almost all homosexuals engage in sexual practices involving degradation or humiliation rarely practiced by heterosexuals. [12] The degrading nature of such practices constitutes the real basis of the homosexual security threat as photographs or a video of a service member or of a civilian policy-maker in such an extremely compromising position makes them vulnerable to blackmail or extortion. [13]

A Department of Defense report by Theodore Sarbin entitled, “Homosexuality and Personal Security,” was leaked to the press in October 1991, by an openly homosexual Congressman. The press quoted the Sarbin study saying that gay conduct is “unrelated to moral character” and claimed that homosexual and heterosexual trustworthiness and conduct are “identical.” Sarbin’s assertion is astounding when sexual infidelity and promiscuity are at the core of homosexual behavior, and it is inherently hostile to the moral order America was founded upon.

The much ballyhooed Sarbin study is little more than a pro-homosexual polemic. Sarbin’s study ignores many facts, repeats falsehoods concerning the nature of homosexuality, offers sheer conjecture regarding the nature of opposition to homosexuality, automatically discounts scientific and moral arguments against homosexuality and overlooks counter-espionage case histories involving homosexuals who became traitors through blackmail. [14] Its list of references includes not a single source on the actual experience of intelligence services with homosexuality.

Also, Sarbin’s oft-cited authority, John Money, blatantly demanded legalized adult-child sex in the “man/boy love” journal Paedophilia. Sarbin authority, Bullough, is one of a score of social science editors of Paedophilia. [15]

“The love between men and boys is at the foundation of homosexuality,” [16] or so says a recent editorial in the Sentinel, San Francisco’s premier homosexual publication. A plank in the “gay rights” agenda of 1972 called for striking down the age of consent laws which would allow sexual relations between adults and children. An organization called the North American Man/Boy Love Association (NAMBLA) champions “intergenerational sex.” The Rene Guyon Society expresses its philosophy in its motto, “sex before eight or it’s too late.”

In spite of the flaws inherent in Sarbin’s work, the study has gone on to influence judges, legislators, civilians and military personnel to force change with regard to homosexuals and security clearances. The chairman of the House Intelligence Committee and others encouraged the director of the CIA to stop the long-standing practice of asking potential CIA employees in lie-detector tests whether they are homosexual and also stopped investigating sexual orientation when updating security clearances. The decision followed a 1991 study ordered by Mr. Gates and encouraged by Mr. McCurdy that found no case of a CIA employee’s ever having been blackmailed into committing espionage on account of homosexuality. [17]

Yet American agents in the CIA have been turned against their country after blackmail threats related to homosexual behavior. James Speyer Kronthal was entrapped by photographs of his sexual activity twice by hostile intelligence services – first by the Gestapo before World War II and later by the KGB while he was serving as the CIA’s station chief in Bern, Switzerland. [18] In Kronthal’s case, the absence of a ban on homosexuality would not have protected him from the blackmail which made him a traitor: the nature of Kronthal’s depravity was among other things a preference for young boys.

With the stakes so incredibly high, would homosexual leaders and their friends falsify data in order to gain ground? They did, as a matter of record, conceal health data from their own populations in San Francisco and New York during the early days of the AIDS epidemic.

The real connection between homosexual sexual practices and AIDS was squelched. Even gay leaders like Randy Shilts and Larry Kramer were outraged. One thing is certain: homosexuals would move rapidly forward in their quest for a new gender and sexual moral order if the military ban on homosexual behavior is lifted.



Col. Ronald D. Ray, USMCR, is a senior fellow of the foundation. Ray currently is a reserve historian with the Marine Corps Historical Center, Washington, D.C., working on a project on Marine advisors in the Vietnam War in the period of 1954-1975. The foundation thanks First Principles, Inc., for permission to republish his essay.

1. H.W. Jaffe, and C. Keewhan, et al., “National Case-Control Study of Kaposi’s Sarcoma and Pneumocystis Carinii Pneumonia in Homosexual Men: Part 1, Epidemiological Results,” Annals of Internal Medicine, 99 (2), 1983, pp. 145-151; H.H. Handsfield, “Sexually Transmitted Diseases in Homosexual Men,” American Journal of Public Health, (9), 1981, pp. 989-990; Karla Jay and Allen Young, The Gay Report: Lesbians and Gay Men Speak Out About Sexual Experiences and Lifestyles (New York: Summit Books, 1979); Janet E. Gans, et al., America’s Adolescents: How Healthy Are They? (American Medical Association, 1990, p. 31.

2. “The HIV/AIDS Surveillance Report: Year-End Edition,” U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control, National Center for Infectious Diseases, Division of HIV/AIDS, January, 1992, p. 9.

3. General Colin L. Powell, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, letter to Rep. Patricia Schroeder, 6 May 1992.

4. Socarides, Beyond Sexual Freedom (New York: Quadrangle, 1977). p. 121.

5. Paul Cameron, Ph.D., Exposing the AIDS Scandal (Lafayette, LA: Huntington House, 1988), pp. 148-151.

6. Paul Cameron, Ph.D., “Sexual Orientation and Sexually Transmitted Diseases,” Nebraska Medical Journal, vol. 70, 1985, pp. 292-299; J.R. Daling, “Sexual Practices, Sexually Transmitted Diseases, and the Incidence of Anal Cancer,” New England Journal of Medicine, vol. 317, 1987, pp. 973-977.

7. Kingsley, “Colorectal Foreign Bodies, Management Update,” Diseases of the Colon and Rectum, (vol. 28. 1985), 941-44.

8. M.T. Schechter, “Changes in Sexual Behavior,” Lancet, vol. 1293, 1984.

9. Walters, “Sexual Transmission of Hepatitis A in Homosexual Men: Incidence and Mechanism,” New England Journal of Medicine, [vol. 302, 1980], pp. 435-38; and Hepatitis B in Homosexual Men, American Journal of Medicine, 3A-21S-3A-25S [1989].

10. Id.

11. Cameron, Exposing the AIDS Scandal, pp. 149-52.

12. Lorraine Day, M.D., AIDS: What the Government Isn’t Telling You; Palm Desert, Calif.: Rockford Press, 1991, pp. 106-136.

13. William R. Corson, et al., Widows (New York: Crown Publishers, 1989).

14. Theodore R. Sarbin, Ph.D., and Kenneth E. Karols, M.D., Ph.D., Nonconforming Sexual Orientations and Military Suitability, Washington, DC: Defense Personnel Security Research and Education Center, December 1988).

15. Judith Reisman & Edward W. Eichel, Kinsey, Sex and Fraud: The Indoctrination of a People (Lafayette, LA: Huntington House Publishers, 1990), pp. 23-24. See also Judith A.

16. “No Place for Homo-homophobia,” supra.

17. Commentary: Morton Kondracke, “Incoming fusillade … fired in haste?” The Washington Times, 25 November 1992.

18. William R. Corson, et al., Widows (New York: Crown Publishers, 1989).

Colonel Ray’s study has been abridged for publication in this journal. Members can receive a complete text by sending $2.50 to “At Issue: Military: care of the foundation.
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Re: Mrs. Kay Griggs on How the Government Works

Postby admin » Tue Feb 13, 2018 3:48 am

James Speyer Kronthal
Widows [EXCERPT]
by William R. Corson, Susan B. Trento, and Joseph J. Trento
© 1989 by William R. Corson, Susan B. Trento, and Joseph J. Trento



CHAPTER ONE: The First Death

I can't wait for 1984, Love Jim

MRS. LAVINIA THOMAS had been James Speyer Kronthal's housekeeper for many years. She enjoyed working for him. The daffodils in the small garden in front of the white brick town house in Georgetown welcomed her to work that cool spring morning. Usually Mr. Kronthal would be reading the Washington Post and finishing his juice when Mrs. Thomas arrived. It was April I, 1953, at 8:30 A.M. and the paper was still on the front step.

Picking up the paper, Mrs. Thomas went inside. On the console table in the small foyer were several letters to be put out for the mailman and a note from Mr. Kronthal saying he had worked very late and wanted to sleep in. Mrs. Thomas shook her head and wondered about what really went on at her boss's State Department office.

When the telephone rang an hour later there was still no sign of her employer stirring. It was someone from Mr. Kronthal's office who wished to speak to him. Mrs. Thomas explained that he had worked late and did not want to be disturbed. The caller asked her to wake him, that it was important. Mrs. Thomas called to Mr. Kronthal. There was no response. The caller asked Mrs. Thomas to have Mr. Kronthal telephone his office as soon as possible, and hung up.

Later that morning, just as Mrs. Thomas was about to go up and knock hard on Mr. Kronthal's second-floor bedroom door, the front doorbell rang. The two men at the door identified themselves as colleagues of Mr. Kronthal from the Department of State. They moved past Mrs. Thomas into the foyer. One of them said that it was vitally important for Mr. Kronthal to come to a meeting, so they would go wake him. She reluctantly let them precede up the stairs.

They knocked hard on the door, but there was no answer. One of the men turned the doorknob. It was unlocked. Opening the door, they saw a man lying across the bed, fully dressed. James Speyer Kronthal was not sleeping. He was dead. Murdered? Later, all Mrs. Thomas could ask herself and her friends was how this could have happened to such a nice young man.

On paper, James Speyer Kronthal was a perfect recruit for the young, burgeoning intelligence service just beginning to emerge in the United States. He had graduated from two of America's aristocratic educational institutions -- a B.A. from Yale in 1934 and an M.A. from Harvard in 1941. His linguistic abilities included fluency in German, French, and Italian. But it was his work during World War II in the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), the wartime forerunner of the CIA, that caught the eye of Allen Welsh Dulles. During the war, Dulles ran the OSS station in Bern, Switzerland, where Kronthal showed him his mettle.

Both men were born to the same upper class, and both shared a similar, nonisolationist attitude toward international politics. As the war ended and the OSS was disbanded, its membership drifted back to the traditional Old Money roles: completing their educations, joining law firms, and managing family investments.

Less than two years later, Americans learned hard lessons about their once-close ally, the Soviet Union. First came the loss of the atomic bomb secrets, then the Armed Forces Security Agency discovered VENONA. This breaking of the Soviets' code revealed that the war alliance was mere expediency and that the Soviets were not America's good friends; they were, in reality, its dedicated enemy. Most Americans soon regarded the Soviets as the new threat. Congress quickly passed, and President Harry Truman signed, the National Security Act of 1947, which chartered the CIA. The infant spy service comprised the cream of the OSS -- mainly white Anglo-Saxon Protestant males from wealthy families with good educations and some experience in wartime espionage. On April 21, 1947, James Kronthal became chief of Bern Station, one of the first seven CIA overseas offices. [1]

On the opposing side, the Soviets had older, more established, very well organized and successful intelligence departments, known informally as "the organs." The postwar U.S. intelligence organizations were so weak that the Soviets virtually ignored them and concentrated instead on penetrating the British counterintelligence and intelligence services, MIS and MI6, and the U.S. military forces deployed throughout Europe after the war. But the advent of the CIA offered the Soviets a rare opportunity to infiltrate a new service from top to bottom. The NKVD, the forerunner of the KGB, calculatingly decided not to miss this unique chance to learn from the start about each new employee of the Agency and, of course, attempt to recruit some. [2]

NKVD head Lavrenti Beria expected his resident agents in the United States to learn as much as possible about everyone being assigned overseas by the new CIA. He wanted each of the seven new stations' employees thoroughly evaluated for weaknesses -- especially sex, money, or drugs. James Speyer Kronthal was no exception. Beria understood that the CIA was patterned after the OSS, and Bern proved to be one of the most important OSS stations. Counting on the predictability of the Americans, Beria gave the orders that all Bern personnel receive priority attention.

Beria had done very well in postwar Germany penetrating the young Bundesnachrichtendienst -- the West German Federal Intelligence Service -- known as the BND. That penetration would give the Soviets the information they needed on Kronthal to further their cause. By using old records from the OSS, the NKVD established that not only had Kronthal worked for Dulles in Bern, but also that Dulles and Kronthal were friends from the same social circles. That meant Kronthal had important connections. Establishing the true identities of those who worked for the OSS in Bern under Dulles helped the NKVD to determine whether these men were showing up under their true names elsewhere.

While the Soviets were busy trying to figure out whom to recruit in the CIA, President Harry Truman was trying to decide what to do with the new service. He looked upon the new CIA as a gatherer of information, not as a tool for fighting communist expansion in a direct way. Others wanted the CIA to be another OSS, only directed against the Soviets instead of the Nazis.

Operating under Soviet diplomatic cover in Washington, NKVD agents began to check into the backgrounds of the men who were being sent overseas by the CIA. They soon discovered something remarkable. The FBI was selected to perform the security checks on the new employees. The Soviet agents were astonished to learn that all these checks required was an inquiry at the various government agencies to find out if any unfavorable or derogatory information was known about an applicant. In addition, the Bureau would question neighbors, relatives, and classmates, seeking the same type of information. These "background investigations" were a far less rigorous test of loyalty than the NKVD employed for its agents and handlers.

While the FBI conducted its cursory check of Kronthal, the NKVD simultaneously performed a much more thorough one. The man whose resume looked so good to the CIA and FBI was regarded in quite a different way by the Soviets. In Moscow Center, the KGB's headquarters, Kronthal's middle name -- Speyer -- set off alarm bells. NKVD headquarters cabled Washington to find out more about Kronthal's middle name. When word came back that Kronthal's presumptive namesake was James Joseph Speyer, of Speyer and Company, the interest in Kronthal became intense.

The banking house of Speyer had done business with the Tsar. During the 1930s it ranked with Morgan, Kuhn and Loeb in New York, and Lee, Higginson in Boston as one of the major banking firms in the country. The company was originally founded in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, in 1837, with the New York bank opening a year later.

The NKVD was able to learn that in 1913 when Leon Kronthal and his wife, Maude Mabel Ranger Kronthal, became parents, they decided to give their son a middle name after Leon's flamboyant business partner Joseph Speyer. Over the years Speyer treated young Kronthal like a member of his own family. Later this would bring heartbreak to Leon Kronthal, whose relationship with Joseph Speyer deteriorated as his son grew closer to Leon's business partner.

It is not hard to understand why Leon Kronthal and Joseph Speyer did not get along. They were exact opposites. Leon was a hardworking but dull man. Speyer, on the other hand, always dapper, was a womanizer and was the only Jewish member of several exclusive New York clubs. The young Kronthal's association with the Speyers was a great way for him to enter New York society.

Young Kronthal traveled on vacations with the Speyer family. He attended the Lincoln School in New York with Nelson Rockefeller and Michael Straight. [3] The NKVD found that at Yale, Kronthal did not take business courses as his father had urged him to, but majored, instead, in art history.

Yale was a heady experience for James Kronthal. He was young, reasonably attractive, and quite rich at a time when the Great Depression had swallowed up so many fortunes. He was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and was a member of the Yale rowing crew. His personality resembled that of James Speyer rather than that of his father. He found Speyer's company more interesting too; upon graduation, James Kronthal ignored his father's differences with Speyer and joined Joseph Speyer & Co. Leon Kronthal "retired" from Speyer & Co. to found his own company in 1934.

The Soviet NKVD learned that Kronthal had been sent off to Germany by Speyer where he had used the Speyer family connections to sell artworks that the Nazis confiscated from Jews between 1933 and 1940. In addition to becoming the go-between for this financial service, he also became personally acquainted with Nazi leaders such as Goering, Himmler, and Goebbels.

It was during this period that Kronthal showed a sexual proclivity for young boys. He was entrapped by the Gestapo, and it took Goering's personal intervention to get him out of trouble. But the Germans kept very good records, and the Kronthal arrest record was carefully filed away.

The information on Kronthal later came into the hands of the NKVD through its penetration of General Gehlen's BND by Heinz Felfe. The moral of Kronthal's homosexual stumble is that knowledge of personal transgressions has a way of moving with a natural force from one intelligence service to another without regard to ideology or the sanctity of the sources. So when the NKVD took an interest in Kronthal, his history gave them a field day.

The NKVD kept digging. They learned that although Kronthal's work with Speyer & Co. had been financially rewarding, the emotional cost of profiting from other people's stolen wealth -- people who were sent to death camps -- had been enormous. Kronthal had decided to quit his job and return home to attend Harvard to get a graduate degree in art history. It was at Harvard that Kronthal became acquainted with a young Harvard Law School freshman named James Jesus Angleton. Years later, Angleton would rise to the highest ranks of the CIA as the man in charge of preventing its penetration by the Soviets -- or any other country's service.

Both Angleton and Kronthal had similar personalities and both were deeply suspicious of the motives of those who pursued wealth without regard to political consequences. These suspicions arose because both men had been associated with families that did just that.

After Pearl Harbor, both Angleton and Kronthal answered the call to the colors. Kronthal ended up in the Signal Corps. In 1944, after some combat service, he was assigned to the OSS. It was here that he met the men who would later form the heart of the CIA.

Because of his experience in Germany before the war, Kronthal was very useful to Allen Dulles at the OSS station in Bern. From Dulles's viewpoint, James Kronthal was an ideal subordinate. Not only did he know all the "right" people, but he also possessed a considerable amount of the guilty knowledge associated with the activities of the station chiefs older brother, future Secretary of State John Foster Dulles. Like Kronthal, the Dulles family had done business in Germany during the Weimar Republic and the early days of Hitler.

After the Germans were defeated, Kronthal proved how flexible a man he could be. On behalf of the OSS and its successors, he busied himself recovering the art that the Nazis had stolen during their ascendancy. Allen Dulles, fulfilling the paternal role that Joseph Speyer had once provided, largely left Kronthal on his own to handle these expensive and precious art treasures. Finding his personal life more freely fulfilled in the ruins of Europe, Kronthal simply did not want to go home and rejoin the banking business. His homosexuality would be too much of a burden to carry in that milieu.

Kronthal's appointment in 1947 as the head of the CIA's new Bern Station was the perfect solution to this unhappy young man's problem. Not only was Bern in charge of CIA operations in Switzerland, but also in much of the rest of Western Europe.

By now the NKVD had learned all they needed to know about James Speyer Kronthal. Moscow Center set two objectives: one was to blackmail him into becoming a Soviet agent, and the second was to make certain he was promoted up through the ranks of their new-found nemesis -- the CIA.

The NKVD was not interested in the information Kronthal could provide from Bern in the short term. It was clear to Beria that Kronthal had the potential to go places in the CIA. The aim with Kronthal was to recruit him to become an "agent in place" at the highest levels of the CIA. Perhaps someday, if politics and luck came together, KronthaI might even head the American clandestine services.

Chinese boys were supplied to Kronthal in Switzerland. He was secretly filmed and then blackmailed. Moscow Center wanted him totally under its control. Although Moscow already had access to the information Kronthal was providing CIA headquarters from Bern, by forcing him to send regular "packets" of information to Moscow Center, the Soviets made sure that Kronthal committed treason. The NKVD had him firmly in its grasp, and there was no turning back. Kronthal had done the one thing that could ruin his life. The Soviets had him.

In May 1952, Kronthal's Bern tour ended. He returned to Washington and was assigned to help plan a reorganization of the CIA to meet future needs and growth. His earlier apprehensions about returning home were now compounded by his betrayal of America. He was not a willing double agent.

The pressures had aged Kronthal dramatically during his overseas tour. He was a man under great strain. On the surface, however, his perfect resume was only enhanced by the addition of five apparently impeccable years in Bern. Kronthal was destined for greatness in the CIA. At Moscow Center, the NKVD believed victory was near.

In the United States, 1952 was an election year. The upcoming presidential election meant changes were coming to the CIA, and the NKVD was concerned. Walter Bedell Smith's declining health meant that he would probably step down as the head of the CIA. The NKVD pressured Kronthal to provide them with information on who was in line for the Director's job. It was critical to the Soviets. The exposure of their moles in 1951 -- Burgess and Maclean, Soviet agents in the British government -- meant that the Americans would obviously cut off the British from sensitive intelligence. The Soviets had to get more men in the CIA. The CIA had now become their primary opponent.

The NKVD was not pleased with the information Kronthal provided. But the kind of information they wanted did not exist. Eisenhower had not given a hint what his intentions were for the CIA. General Smith wanted General Lucian Truscott to replace him at CIA. But Truscott turned down the job when Eisenhower offered it to him. Eisenhower then turned to Allen Dulles. For Kronthal, his old mentor becoming head of the service was a personal tragedy. He knew the NKVD would pressure him to wangle a top job from Dulles. It meant that Moscow Center now had a gold mine in Kronthal.

Kronthal's work on an internal reorganization of the CIA was almost finished. His Soviet handler told Kronthal, who was never very good at politics, to press for his appointment to head the clandestine services. Dulles so trusted Kronthal that he was prepared to give him any post he wanted. But the pressures caused by his fear of being exposed as a homosexual and a Soviet agent were beginning to tell. Kronthal became paralyzed by his fear of exposure. He could not bring himself to fight off other colleagues who were aggressively seeking the same position.

Then chaos struck the Soviet Union. On March 2, 1953, Stalin died -- or may have been murdered. His death was not announced until three days later. Beria was fighting to maintain control over the intelligence organs. The pressures on Kronthal increased. Now, more than ever, Beria needed his agent in place. Beria moved to seize power too quickly. While he had the NKVD in his pocket, it was not a sufficient power base from which he could seize control of the Communist Party and the Politburo. Beria began to pull back and wage an internal war at home with the new leadership while pressuring his agents abroad to produce crucial intelligence.

On March 31, 1953, Dulles decided to find out for himself what position Kronthal wanted in the Agency. Dulles had to make the final top assignments in the CIA, so he invited his old friend over that evening for a working dinner. They lived only two blocks from each other.

What happened between the two men that night is lost to history. There is no evidence that Dulles ever discussed his last conversations with Kronthal that night with anyone else. What is known is that after dinner Kronthal walked to his Georgetown town house at 1662 32nd Street, N. W., sometime before midnight. At home, Kronthal wrote two letters. One letter was addressed to Allen Dulles and the other to Richard Helms. In addition, Kronthal left the brief note for his housekeeper, asking her not to disturb him.

At 9:30 A.M., when Kronthal failed to report to his office on the Mall, the CIA telephoned (under State Department cover) and asked Mrs. Thomas to wake him up. According to police reports, Mrs. Thomas called out but got no answer. She was hesitant to wake him because of his note. But within two hours, Gould Cassal and McGregor Gray arrived at the house from the CIA's Office of Security.

Over Mrs. Thomas's objections, the two men went to Kronthal's bedroom and found his fully clothed body lying on a daybed. His jacket was off, but he still had on a shirt and tie. An empty vial was on the floor. The two security men followed standard procedure and called the CIA's unofficial liaison in the Washington, D.C., Metropolitan Police Department.

Lt. Lawrence Hartnett had gotten such calls before. He was in charge of cleaning up messes like this one. His job was to cover up what the CIA wanted hidden when it came to Washington police matters. In return, Hartnett was given terrific local intelligence. His files on Washington-based politicians rivaled J. Edgar Hoover's in volume. He had enough details on the local power structure to remain on the force as long as he wanted.

Hartnett carried the ball. He told the press that investigators had found a handwritten letter to a male friend indicating that Kronthal was "mentally upset because of pressure connected with work." This letter, to Richard Helms, and another to Dulles were delivered to their addressees rather than held as evidence by the police. The death was quickly hushed up. An autopsy placed the time of death around midnight, but a chemical analysis failed to determine the cause of death or the contents of the vial found next to Kronthal's body. The cause of death was listed as "apparent suicide."

While the notes to Dulles and Helms were found unmailed in KronthaI's house, he did manage to mail one letter before he died. In a letter to his sister, Susan, Kronthal made a clean breast of his homosexual proclivities and made reference to the "tremendous difficulties" they posed. Susan, already aware of her brother's sexual persuasion, was not alarmed or fretful over these revelations. However, Kronthal's confession that he was not really in the Department of State but, as she had suspected, in the CIA, caused her great concern. The last sentence in James Kronthal's final testament to his sister was, "I can't wait till 1984. Love, Jim."

Susan became the first of a generation of relatives to be stonewalled and lied to by U. S. intelligence agencies over the details of a loved one's death or disappearance. Susan's futile attempts to find out more of the facts surrounding her brother's death led her to believe that the CIA was covering up or withholding information that she thought she had a right to know. But the facts surrounding his death were stamped "Secret" and withheld from her, just as they would be kept from the family members of other, future Cold War casualties.

Kronthal had become an embarrassment and a liability to both sides. He knew firsthand the cost of making a deal with the devil; it must have been clear to his sister that he had little hope or faith that his countrymen would have the wit or wisdom to do any better than he did.

For Beria, the loss of James Kronthal was a major failure. The opportunity to penetrate the CIA at its highest level had been squandered. At Moscow Center the damage report on the Kronthal case made it clear that the Center had pressed him too hard for basically useless or unobtainable political information.

Murder or suicide in the Kronthal case could not be determined. If the Soviets had concluded that he had been identified as a mole by the CIA, they would have killed him. The "organs" did not have any compunctions about arranging to kill any "asset" who had outlived his or her usefulness. They readily killed millions of Russians. A foreigner was not worth any hesitation. If the CIA had learned about Kronthal's "problems," it is possible that Dulles himself would have approved an "executive action," not just to eliminate the problem, but also to send a message to the Soviets that the Agency knew the man had been compromised and turned. Certainly the speed with which the Office of Security arrived at the Kronthal home adds some support to that alternative. More likely, however, is the possibility that Kronthal confessed to Dulles that night over dinner. The next day, when Kronthal did not show up at work, a concerned Dulles concluded that something was very wrong and dispatched the security men.

For the Soviets, only one thing mattered. Kronthal was lost and had to be replaced. With Stalin gone, the winds of change were sweeping the country, and the NKVD had to have information to survive. The only real external intelligence threat left was the CIA.

Long before Kronthal's compromise and recruitment, the NKVD had begun an arduous and methodical program to penetrate the CIA. It was not a high-wire act like the Kronthal effort, but it did get the job done. The NKVD put together dossiers on thousands of Americans who had played a part in the joint war effort. Their World War II files on Americans were picked clean for potential recruitments. If an American showed an interest in the Soviet way of life or sympathy for the Soviet struggle, he became a candidate. He would be nurtured like a calf; he would be given help with his education and be guided toward a career in intelligence. It would be from this cadre that the CIA moles would be selected, trained, and sent on lifelong missions.

The file on Kronthal is buried deep in the archives of the CIA. It is a file on what is probably the first Soviet penetration of the infant intelligence service. It is a story known by only a handful of people who are alive today. The file of James Speyer Kronthal is a metaphor for what the Soviets have done to our intelligence services for a generation. James Kronthal was the first Soviet mole in the CIA. His previously untold story is the introduction to how the Soviets made a conscientious decision to penetrate the CIA and succeeded. His story would haunt CIA director after CIA director. The idea of penetration would never be far from Dulles's mind for the rest of his tenure. All the CIA directors that followed -- John McCone, Admiral William Raborn, Richard M. Helms. James Schlesinger, William Colby, George Bush, Admiral Stansfield Turner, William Casey, and William Webster -- would be held accountable for keeping the KGB out of the CIA.



Chapter One: The First Death

1. The other stations were in London, Paris, Rome, Cairo, Lisbon, and Shanghai.

2. Narodnyi Kommissariat Vnutrennikh Del (NKVD) -- The People's Commissariat for Internal Affairs -- the forerunner to the KGB.

3. An American whom Sir Anthony Blunt, a Soviet spy in British intelligence, recruited to work for the Soviets while they were both at Cambridge University in the 1930s. See Peter Wright and Paul Greengrass, Spycatcher (New York: Viking Penguin, 1987), p. 213. Further documentation can be found in Straight's own book and in Mask of Treachery by John Costello (New York: Morrow, 1988).
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Part 1 of 2

John A. Paisley
Widows [EXCERPT]
by William R. Corson, Susan B. Trento, and Joseph J. Trento
© 1989 by William R. Corson, Susan B. Trento, and Joseph J. Trento



CHAPTER THREE: Paisley: The Plumbers

There was this bird that got a very late start on the passage south for the winter season. He got tired of flying and he rested on a telephone wire for the night. Well, the inevitable happened and the poor bird froze during the night and fell off the wire to the ground. Just as the bird woke up, a horse happened by and took a dump on the bird. The bird said, "Not only do I almost freeze to death, but now this happens to me." But the bird soon discovered that the horseshit was warming him up and he stuck his head out to look around. He let out a warble and a big cat came up to the bird and ate him. The morals of the story are: Just because someone shits on you, it doesn't mean they are your enemy-and if you're up to your neck in shit, don't sing about it.

-- John A. Paisley's favorite joke

PAISLEY AND MANY of his colleagues believed that Henry Kissinger was "cooking the books" by demanding that the CIA analysts work with political appointees to put together "intelligence memoranda." These National Intelligence [Security] Memoranda, or NISMs, were designed to carry as much weight as the Office of Strategic Research's estimates, but with Kissinger's stamp. They were devices to get the CIA to endorse White House policies -- a hybrid combination that would supersede CIA estimates because they had the endorsement of both the CIA and the White House.

Kissinger was convinced that if the Soviets were painted as being too advanced in strategic missile construction, then the Senate would not approve a series of treaties that he was negotiating and promoting as the rewards of "detente" with the Soviets. Arms control had progressed greatly since the 1950s. But to move beyond what Kennedy accomplished with his Nuclear Test Ban Treaty in 1963 would take very bold moves. Kissinger seemed prepared to make those moves despite facts unearthed by some analysts at the CIA about the Soviets' true intentions.

By the end of 1969, Paisley was a "nervous wreck," according to Maryann. The battle between the Office of Strategic Research and Kissinger was raging. Paisley was in charge of putting together NISM- 3. This memorandum on the state of Soviet air defenses included the Soviets' anti-ballistic-missile capability. In terms of the SALT I negotiations, NISM-3 was most important. According to Paisley's colleague Philip A. Waggener, the argument boiled down to a determination on whether or not the Soviet's new SAM V missile gave them an anti-ballistic-missile (ABM) capability. [1] Paisley had learned from a Soviet defector that the SAM V had such a capability. But, inside the CIA, a debate raged on the accuracy of this information. Suddenly, Paisley found himself having serious trouble getting his bosses to agree to include his discoveries about the Soviets' deployment of an anti-ballistic-missile system around major cities. They attempted to explain to him that because policy and intelligence were now being combined in the NISMs, other considerations had to be included. Paisley, according to his wife, actually resigned. But Paisley's CIA colleagues tell a different story. They say Paisley seemed more caught up in his personal troubles than in policy battles.

By late 1969, John Paisley's work left him with little time for Maryann, Edward, and Diane. His wife demanded that he reorder his priorities. Maryann says she threatened to leave him that year if he did not do something about his life. [2] Paisley went to his CIA superiors and was given what amounts to a year off-a year at the Imperial Defence College in London. [3]

To the CIA, Paisley's year at the Defence College was part of their grooming him for his eventual ascendancy to the top position in OSR. But to Maryann and the children, the London sabbatical was a great opportunity to get to know John again. There was little real work in the London assignment. Most at the CIA considered it a reward for Paisley's hard work and dedication. The Imperial Defence College curriculum included studies in strategic philosophy and detailed studies on the regions of the world. Here, colleagues from various Western military and intelligence services could exchange ideas. After Paisley disappeared, counterintelligence chief James Angleton speculated that this relaxed, academic atmosphere was the perfect place for the Soviets to try to plant an agent or make a recruitment. He argued that the Imperial Defence College was the sort of gathering place for Western intelligence experts that the Soviets would be "fools" not to penetrate. [4]

The course work at the Imperial Defence College was divided into three terms that were separated by short trips to various NATO installations, as well as longer overseas tours. [5]

The family rented a flat in London. Edward Paisley recalls spending much of the time sightseeing. But a disappointed Maryann said she soon learned that John was more distracted, not less. "He couldn't wind down," Maryann recalls. Paisley behaved very strangely that year. Even though he had secure facilities at the U.S. Embassy in London (which was located near the Paisleys' CIA-rented flat), Paisley opened a post office box fifty miles away at Greenham Common, the town that gave its name to a U.S.-run nuclear base in the English countryside. Paisley was not cleared for the base, yet he kept a box on the base's secure grounds. There was no real "official" reason for him to have the post office box. [6]

For a CIA man like Paisley to have a "secret" box, located very far away from where he was staying, when better and more secure facilities were available at the Embassy, is the kind of activity that strikes fear in the heart of any security officer. Following Paisley's disappearance in 1978, when a newspaper reporter learned of the box, the CIA's Office of Security made a major effort to investigate it. The very fact that they investigated indicates that Paisley's CIA superiors had not been notified of the box. One frightening conclusion some security officers made was that Paisley could have been using it for illicit purposes. [7]

What was Paisley doing in London? One possibility is that he had been asked by the CIA to personally recruit someone with whom he was acquainted while on assignment in London. Experts in counterintelligence suggest that Paisley was being contacted for this mission through some sort of "drop" at the nuclear base. But others are more skeptical, including Paisley's own colleagues, who say they have no explanation for his activities.

According to his son, Edward, Paisley was in good spirits in London. Edward does not recall ever going to Greenham Common with his father. He explained that the family did not have a car in London since their flat was not far from the American Embassy. [8]

For Maryann, the memories of London were not wonderful. Their marriage continued its downward spiral. She remembers his being called constantly to the American Embassy to work. On several occasions she heard him use false names over the telephone. She also recalls his going to the embassy to use its secure communication channels. [9]

During this period, Maryann would write to the Paisley family in Oregon that things were fine. Maryann Paisley took great pride in her family and did not want to worry John's mother. [10] But by the end of their stay in London, she had serious doubts that her marriage to John Paisley could continue. He was now working between seventy and seventy-five hours a week. Like other CIA families she had come to know, her family was "compartmentalized," kept separate from his real daily life -- the Agency. [11]

John Paisley returned from London in January 1971, with a full beard. His marriage had deteriorated further, but his career was still soaring. [12]

Paisley's earlier unpleasant encounters with the Nixon White House receded as he and most of the Office of Strategic Research began to prepare for the marathon Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty (SALT I) negotiations. Paisley was providing briefings for Henry Kissinger. [13] Because of his high rank in the OSR, Paisley found himself being appointed to one troubleshooting team after another sent off to various points to do postmortems. These included Cyprus, India, Cambodia, and Geneva during the Nixon years. Paisley's professionalism never gave Kissinger or others he dealt with a hint of his personal disdain for the Nixon administration. Though his sister remembers him railing against Kissinger, Paisley found himself with increasing responsibilities as he played his part in putting together teams for the SALT I talks. The support work for such an arms limitation negotiation was tremendous. And it was Paisley's division that was charged with determining just how strong the Soviets were, and in what strategic areas. Those estimates would determine all U.S. negotiating positions with the Russians.

In spite of Paisley's earlier problems with Kissinger on the NISMs, it was Paisley who gave Kissinger one of his best pitches for selling SALT to political conservatives. Paisley and his CIA colleagues argued that the Soviets could no longer afford to support a huge defense buildup. Their Pentagon colleagues disagreed. The OSR's scientific division reported that the Soviet missiles, while being produced at ever-increasing rates, were heavier than ours, but were also amazingly inaccurate. They argued that because they were so inaccurate, it was necessary for the Russians to carry bigger warheads to destroy a target. Further, such information was being confirmed by FEDORA and TOP HAT, the code names of two Soviet agents who had been recruited by the FBI to work against the Soviet government. According to former CIA analyst David S. Sullivan, both agents reported that the Soviet ICBMs were inaccurate. This information, combined with Paisley's insistence that the Soviet economy could not support a massive nuclear buildup, created the foundation for America's negotiating positions. It was on these positions that Kissinger based his negotiations with the Soviets. In retrospect, they proved to be disastrous.

The image that Paisley and his colleagues painted of the Soviet Union, based on their estimates, used methodologies that were "flawed," according to Phil Waggener. Waggener, who worked with Paisley, says there were "very basic problems" in some of Paisley's original methods of measuring the Soviet military economy. The net result was that for years the CIA advised U.S. policy-makers that the Soviets were less able to support a major strategic military buildup than they actually were.

Waggener and other OSR employees see nothing sinister in the errors. But other colleagues are not so charitable. David Sullivan said that, because of Paisley's estimates, the United States went into the SALT I negotiations convinced that the Soviets did not have the economic wherewithal to engage in a major secret buildup. "But, as history shows, that is precisely what they did," Sullivan asserts.

After John Paisley disappeared, his son, Edward, recalls seeing a document indicating that the Soviets approached John Paisley overseas. He believes it was during the SALT I talks. Edward says this document was later stolen from his mother's lawyer's office. According to Edward, the document said Paisley was approached and told to go ahead and take the bait by the CIA. Edward said that was the last reference to it. [14] Later on, he claimed, the document had disappeared.

Paisley's boss, Hank Knoche, says that if such an approach by the Soviets took place, he believes he would have been told about it: "I think maybe he would have mentioned something like that to me. Maybe not. Maybe not. If he reported that and had been told to keep to himself, then others would worry about it. He would play that security game. He was a bug on security. Reclusive. It's hard to put together his life outside the Langley building, isn't it? Strange."

What disturbs Paisley's former colleagues is that after establishing himself as tough and independent of Kissinger before going to England in 1970, Paisley came back as almost a different person. "He just didn't speak out, he seldom stuck his neck out," OSR colleague Clarence Baier recalls. The net result of the CIA information given to Kissinger was that the Soviets were allowed to build up their strategic weapons force to a level that erased the longtime U.S. advantage.

As Paisley became acquainted with Kissinger and his staff, he found himself being used more and more for White House chores. The CIA had known since the Johnson administration that the White House had been involved in domestic spying. After all, one of these operations had been established in the CIA's own basement offices: Operation CHAOS. President Johnson had been convinced the Communist Chinese and the KGB had infiltrated the antiwar movement. Over the years of CHAOS's existence, more than one hundred office-size filing cabinets were filled with personal information on Americans and so-called leads to subversive overseas contacts. [15] The Nixon administration used that same argument to intensify its own domestic spyIng effort.

In January of 1971, a White House aide to Henry Kissinger and the National Security Council Staff named David R. Young was given what seemed like a routine White House assignment by Egil "Bud" Krogh, Jr., to declassify documents.[16] Officially, Young was responsible for the classification and declassification of documents. His new position also required him to work with other government agencies, including the CIA, to determine the possible sources of unauthorized disclosure or "leaking" of classified documents and secret information. Joining Young as his assistants were George Gordon Liddy and E. Howard Hunt. Liddy, a lawyer, came to work for Young from an assignment at the Department of the Treasury on the recommendation of Bud Krogh during the early summer of 1971. Liddy had been working with Krogh on the international drug problem -- an investigation to which Paisley was also assigned. Krogh was convinced Liddy's experience would give Young what he needed. One of Liddy's new responsibilities was to serve as liaison with the Department of Justice in connection with the project.

Hunt was recommended to Young by Charles Colson. Colson believed that Hunt's CIA background would be of great help on the project. Hunt's role was to deal with the CIA on an informal level while Young would be the formal contact to the top people at the CIA like Director Richard McGarrah Helms and his deputy, Gen. Vernon Walters. [17]

On the surface the declassification project Young was running seemed benign. Officially the White House said it was merely trying to speed up the normally lengthy declassification process. But below the surface, the Nixon administration officials had other motives. They were trying to get their hands on files that contained embarrassing information about previous, Democratic presidencies so they could release this material to the public. In June, when the Pentagon Papers appeared in the New York Times, Young and other White House officials expressed anger that only documents embarrassing to the Nixon administration seemed to be leaked. Colson and Young began a campaign to convince more senior White House staffers like Bob Haldeman and John Erlichman that a series of selective disclosures about Democratic administrations could strengthen Nixon's political position. [18]

According to former FBI officials such as William Branigan, the Nixon White House first approached J. Edgar Hoover for assistance in setting up the "Plumbers" to plug unofficial government leaks, but he flatly refused. At first Nixon wanted to conduct the Plumbers under the FBI's own black-bag operations. But Hoover did not buy allegations that the Pentagon Papers had been leaked to the Soviets and that, therefore, the Bureau should get involved in the investigation. Besides, Hoover had his own problems. [19]

The White House then turned to the CIA for assistance. When David Young requested that Richard Helms send someone from the CIA to help plug leaks, Helms did what he usually did in security matters, according to former Angleton staffer Clare Petty: he turned to Angleton for advice. Angleton suggested to Helms's staff that the Deputy Director of Strategic Research had experience in previous leak studies. Paisley's name was sent back to Young as someone who might be able to assist. [20]

Why Paisley?

One reason that Angleton may have wanted Paisley in Young's proximity was that Paisley may well have been working for Angleton all along. As Chief of Counterintelligence, Angleton was growing more and more disturbed with Henry Kissinger. Paisley may have been sent over by Angleton simply to report back to him on what was going on.

Angleton had reason to fear Kissinger. He knew that Young had been involved with Kissinger on discussions of how hundreds of pounds of enriched uranium were transferred illegally to Israel to seed their nuclear weapons program. It was no secret in the intelligence community that Angleton had played a major role in assisting in the transfer. Angleton had supervised the United States' intelligence relationship with Israel for its entire history. If the news of the illegal transfer was made public, Angleton stood to lose everything -- including his role in running the CIA's "Israeli account."

On August 9, 1971, Paisley was personally requested by Young to conduct a crash investigation of security leaks to the press. He was asked to look at nineteen categories of leaked security information. The subsequent report sent out by Paisley under the signature of Director Helms so impressed the White House that Paisley was designated to handle CIA liaison with the Plumbers. [21]

Young's Plumbers unit was designed to paint as unpleasant a picture of the leakers as possible and to get this damaging information out in public. Soon Paisley found himself in the middle of this distasteful and paranoid world. Documents show that Young requested Paisley by name. Paisley's job was to provide fodder for Young's efforts from the repository of CIA secrets.

Soon Paisley was in the thick of efforts to discover everything embarrassing about Daniel Ellsberg, including the most intimate details of Ellsberg's sexual activities. [22] By August 18, 1971 the project to investigate Ellsberg and discredit the leakers of the Pentagon Papers took on new urgency. The White House code named the effort ODESSA.

All of these operations went on under an umbrella organization called the Task Force on Leaks. As John Paisley discovered, the Nixon leak task force was merely a team of second-story artists designed to uncover and then collect damaging and embarrassing evidence on "hostile" leakers. But domestic political "enemies" of Nixon and his administration soon became primary targets.

In one memorandum to Erlichman from Colson and Young is a reference to the CIA's performance in the project, saying the Agency had provided "little relevant material." It goes on to say that the "CIA has been understandably reluctant to involve itself in the domestic area, but responsive to the President's wishes, has done so. Overall performance to date is satisfactory." Donald Burton, who worked under Paisley at the CIA, said Paisley's being picked by the White House "does not surprise me. First a leak comes out and everyone says what are we going to do about those fucking leaks and how are we going to stop of all these leaks. This will come down right through the DCI and not the security side of things .... It happens in every administration .... So it will come down and hit the Chief [of OSR] and the Chief will then have to assign someone and it is going to be the deputy. So John's the deputy and it is a shit detail as far as John is concerned." [23]

What other operations did Paisley get involved in? There has been much speculation over what the Plumbers were really looking for in Lawrence F. O'Brien's office the night of the famous Watergate break-in. But perhaps the most important clues can be taken from Nixon's obsession with the Kennedys. Hanging over Nixon's head at the time was a $100,000 unreported campaign contribution to Nixon from Howard Hughes, accepted by his best friend, Bebe Rebozo. [24] Rebozo was under Justice Department investigation. In the 1960 campaign, a Howard Hughes loan to Nixon's brother, Donald, became a major issue. According to Robert Maheu, a former FBI and CIA man himself who managed Hughes's affairs for years, he had also delivered a $25,000 contribution to Robert Kennedy's 1968 campaign. [25] Maheu says the idea that O'Brien had any detailed knowledge of any further contributions to the Kennedys is absurd.

It may have been details tying Hughes to the Kennedys that the Plumbers were searching for that night. Maheu explains that by this time a group of Mormons hired by Hughes had taken over his affairs. But why wouldn't Nixon, considering his close relationship with Hughes in the past, simply ask him about the loans? According to Maheu, Hughes was not "operating on all cylinders by this time," and the "Mormon Mafia" around him largely cut him off from the outside world, even from the President of the United States. Why, then, would Nixon believe that there was more to O'Brien and the Kennedy contributions than there actually was? Could Angleton, through Paisley, have planted that idea? Could the CIA actually tempt the Plumbers into an intemperate act over the promise of a memorandum showing a connection embarrassing to the Kennedys? Considering the fact that Young, Colson, Liddy, and Hunt left no stone unturned to find out damaging material about the Kennedys, having a trusted man like Paisley feed them this kind of a meal seems like a simple matter.

There are strong indications that some sort of Plumbers team was kept on even after the arrests that night at the Watergate. Top-level CIA sources suspect that it was the Plumbers who conducted an operation that ruined plans for the CIA's second mission by the Hughes-built ship, Glomar Explorer, to recover more of the wreckage of a Soviet submarine that sank in 1968. On June 5, 1974, two months before Richard Nixon resigned, the highly secure Hughes storage facility at 7020 Romaine Street in Hollywood, California, was burglarized. It was the third burglary of a Hughes facility in four months. According to Maheu, among the items taken, despite a security guard and impressive vaults, was a footlocker full of Hughes's records documenting his political contributions over the years, including the ones to the Kennedys. In that footlocker was also the memorandum detailing the Glomar Explorer arrangement. For then CIA Director William Colby, the burglary began the nightmare of trying to keep the Glomar Explorer operation secret from the Russians by keeping it out of the American media. [26] But to Maheu it was not the Glomar material that interested the burglars; it was the political material. Maheu believes it was the "Mormon Mafia" that tipped off the perpetrators in order to solidify their control of the Hughes empire. Maheu does not believe the break-in would have been possible without cooperation from inside the company. "I am familiar with 7020 Romaine. Hughes chose it for its total security. And some son of a bitch is going to show up in the wee hours and say to the guard, 'Take me to the vaults'?" Maheu asked.

Maheu also does not believe the documents in the trunk were for the exclusive use of the "Mormon Mafia." "This is funny. Here ends up top-secret information in the hands of a bunch of [Mormon] zombies that couldn't pass the lowest of security tests," Maheu said.

So who did burglarize Romaine? [27] Maheu believes that the "Mormon Mafia" that took control of the Hughes empire may have tipped off the Nixon White House about the footlocker in order to curry favor with the administration. Several FBI officials involved in the Watergate investigations believe Romaine Street may have been a last-ditch attempt to save the disintegrating Nixon administration. But perhaps the most logical suggestion comes from a former counterintelligence official of the FBI, who suggested that if Paisley had been working for the Soviets, using the break-in at Romaine to expose Glomar was the perfect way to keep the CIA from getting hold of several nuclear missiles the Agency had failed to retrieve on its first attempt.

For John Paisley's family, the first hint that Paisley might have been in the Plumbers came in 1973. Dale Paisley, then living in the San Francisco Bay area, recalls the incident vividly. "One time in late 1973 he came into the Bay area and called me up and asked me if I would drop him off at the Lawrence-Livermore Laboratory on the way back home. Well, a couple of days later, my son was telling me that a friend of his who was an Air Policeman said they had a raid down at Berkeley. [The friend said] in the background was a guy with a full white beard and he said he thought he was from the CIA or something. He described Jack to a T.... Well the next time I talked to Jack, I said, 'Hey, what's this I hear about that raid over in Berkeley that night?' And he said, 'How the hell did you hear about that?' That's all he said about it." [28] Confirming Dale's suspicions of Paisley's trip to Berkeley is a travel voucher dated December 3 through December 5, 1973, for "San Francisco and Berkeley, California." [29]

According to Paisley's sister, Katherine, "Mother was damn near psychic in a lot of ways about any of us if we were floating into some dangerous situation. And Mother was just paranoid over this Watergate thing that Jack was involved with, and I kept saying, 'Oh, Mother, no, he's not involved.'" While Paisley's mother had learned of her son's work for the CIA, she didn't believe him concerning his involvement with the Nixon administration. Katherine said Clara Paisley asked her son about his involvement with Ehrlichman, Dean, and Haldeman and he denied he had anything to do with them at the time. [30]

For Clarence "Bill" Baier, who worked with Paisley in the Office of Strategic Research, this was a period when John was absent "a great deal of time." Paisley never shared with his family his White House activities and the potential damage they could do to the CIA. He and Maryann grew farther and farther apart as he fell down the well of Watergate.

Of all of Paisley's mysterious behavior, none is more bizarre than his activities with "swinging clubs" in the Washington area. Paisley, who had a reputation as a sexual adventurer, was never known as a fool. For him to risk such indiscreet sexual activity could easily bring an end to his entire career. Yet, starting in 1972, John Arthur Paisley joined a series of sex clubs that would turn out to have the darkest of national security implications.

Given the fears today about AIDS, it is hard to imagine the Washington sex scene of the early 1970s. Even harder to fathom is why people with the highest forms of government clearances, like John Paisley, would risk blackmail by engaging in such activity. In the beginning, the parties were simply colleagues from work swapping spouses at their various suburban homes -- a dozen or so couples meeting in a member couple's house for a night of bed-hopping, drugs, and, in some cases, kinky sex. Usually the couples would chip in twenty dollars or more each to cover liquor and drugs, normally marijuana. But as the popularity of swinging grew, the parties among friends became more and more diverse as new swingers were recruited by word of mouth.

Eventually the sex clubs became more organized and were operated by a few people and run out of a wide range of bars. From "Capital Couples," which operated out of a former media hangout called The Class Reunion, to redneck watering holes in Prince Georges County, Maryland, the clubs flourished in the growing free-sex environment.

One party Paisley attended took place at the home of a couple Paisley met through his subordinate Donald Burton, who was a pioneer in the swinging scene. According to witnesses who asked not to be identified in order to protect their families, the setting was pretty typical. Paisley brought a dark-haired, attractive woman and not his wife, Maryann. The split-level, four-bedroom house in Falls Church, Virginia, seemed the picture of suburbia until one noticed couples having sex standing up against the kitchen stove, in the upstairs bedrooms, on the gold shag carpet in the living room, sitting on the upstairs stair railings, and even on the glass-and-wood coffee table.

Two participants in the sex parties recall an incident that they say demonstrated why they liked Paisley so much. Paisley had left a party. As he went outside, he saw that the house was surrounded by several police cars. Instead of taking off, Paisley calmly walked back into the house and told his host about the police and advised the guests to get rid of any marijuana in the house. It turned out to be a false alarm caused when a local youth next door was the subject of a high school prank.

Not all of Paisley's parties were in suburban homes. Paisley would, in later years, hold several sex parties on his sailboat Brillig. One female guest present said that "ten people trying to make love on a thirty-foot sailboat can get pretty intimate." Paisley loved to take nude photographs of his dates, and some of the parties were even videotaped. Paisley may also have hosted the least successful sex party conducted in the Washington area in the 1970s.

Today the Rush River Lodge is a peaceful country home near Washington, Virginia, about an hour south of the Washington, D.C., suburbs. In May 1972, Donald Burton and John Paisley formed the Rush River Lodge Corporation and bought the old lodge with the help of some other CIA friends in the hopes of turning it into a ski resort. [31] The place never worked out as a ski resort, but Burton and Paisley staged several sex parties at the lodge. According to Burton, this was done without the knowledge of their "straight investors."

In the days when Paisley and Burton decided to throw their swingers' party, the lodge was extremely rustic. One guest describes the experience: "The whole idea of going to a swingers' party is to have comfortable sex in a relaxed and unobtrusive environment. ... " The guest's wife finished the story: "Paisley and Burton decided it would be fun and very private to go down to their place. Well, there was nothing like it. A dozen people having sex with each other in every imaginable position for hours and then discovering that your weekend of passion doesn't include running water! The damn plumbing failed."

Most of the partygoers were middle-class, some were reporters, and most dropped out of the scene by 1980, when herpes came to wide public attention. Burton recalls bringing a clandestine CIA employee to one of the swinging parties. And some of Paisley's fellow guests were on the bizarre side. One high-level Nixon appointee enjoyed tying up women and beating them. A United States senator would walk around the parties nude and proclaim to every woman present that he was a senator.

Why was Paisley at the parties? Why in the world would he host some? As word got out about the parties and the fact that employees of the CIA, the FBI, the Pentagon, the NSA, Capitol Hill, and the administration were attending, the KGB resident in Washington wanted them penetrated. It was the perfect place for blackmail and recruitment. It was also the perfect place to make contact with other intelligence agents.

Paisley crossed paths at these parties with an attractive Czechoslovakian couple who would turn out to be high-level penetration agents from the Czech intelligence service. Karl Koecher was a tall and aloof man, and his wife, Hana, was a beautiful woman and Karl's opposite in personality. Worried intelligence officials now believe that Paisley may have worked in tandem with the Koechers.

The Koechers were placed in the United States as what counterintelligence agents call "sleepers" -agents who would work for years to build a solid reputation and a cover story before actually collecting intelligence. The Koechers left Czechoslovakia for New York in December 1965. They told U.S. immigration officials they were political defectors and had been forced to leave because of Karl's secret work for Radio Free Europe. In reality, Koecher had been a Czech intelligence agent since 1961. [32]

Trained in Prague in physics, Karl taught at Wagner College in New York between 1969 and 1973. Like Paisley, Koecher benefited from a connection to Columbia University.
When Koecher took a two-year course offered by Columbia University's Russian Institute, he encountered Zbigniew Brzezinski. Prior to becoming well known as President Carter's National Security Adviser, Brzezinski had spent some time on the CIA's payroll. [33] Koecher hardly had to work at his role as a sleeper agent. The CIA was in such desperate need for language specialists that it did few background checks when he was recruited at Columbia for a job as a CIA translator in February 1973.

Koecher easily passed the CIA's vaunted Office of Security polygraph examination. He joined a long list of spies who had been "fluttered" and had fooled the operators completely. He went into the DDO, the covert side of the CIA, to translate cables from agents. His assignment to such a sensitive post is remarkable. It shows how lax security at the CIA had become. Koecher was given access to material from this country's most prized double agents, men hidden in the Kremlin bureaucracy.

Hana Koecher, an attractive blonde who was Karl's partner in espionage, remained in New York, working in the wholesale diamond business and assisting her husband in funneling out the secrets. The CIA put Karl to work in Rosslyn, Virginia, in a nondescript office building. Here, Koecher had access to important message traffic concerning Soviet Bloc agents and their CIA handlers. The name of this operation was the AE Screen Unit. Its job was to sift through material that was so sensitive that few people on the covert side of the CIA Operations Directorate could see it in its raw form. Koecher was given a top-secret clearance and access to some codeword intelligence. This practice was almost unheard of for defectors of any sort, according to the former deputy chief of CIA counterintelligence, Leonard V. McCoy.

The details of the sex parties and CIA involvement can be found in a lawsuit filed by the owners of one of the houses used for the parties. The neighbors grew tired of the traffic and noise in the usually quiet, posh, suburban Washington community of Fairfax Station, Virginia. The owners were a military officer and his wife, then stationed abroad. When word reached them that their home was being used for illicit purposes, they filed suit.

The owners had turned their sprawling, seven-bedroom house over to a Virginia realtor for management while they were out of the country. The owners and the realtor agreed before they left for their overseas tour that no singles would be considered for tenants. The owners then discovered that their house had ended up in the hands of a sex club known as the Virginia In-Place. Complaints over activities at the house caused the Fairfax County police to put the house under surveillance one weekend. It was during that weekend that several Paisley friends were identified as having attended a party. One car whose license plate was written down by the police belonged to Donald Burton. Burton was summoned for a deposition. [34]
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Burton confirms he attended the parties and recalls bringing Paisley to some at a later period. But another Paisley friend went through his old calendars, which indicate he met Paisley in the swinging scene in 1972. In the major investigations that followed Paisley's disappearance, no references can be found anywhere to the parties or the Koechers. One reason is that Donald Burton says he never notified the CIA's Office of Security of the potential problem of his identity coming out in the court documents. To make matters worse, despite the FBI investigation into the Koechers, which led to their arrest and eventual trade for the Soviet dissident Anatoly Shcharansky on February 11, 1986, no one from the Bureau ever questioned Burton.

Burton is candid about why he did not reveal his attendance at the parties to the CIA's Office of Security: "They would have fired me if I told them." He said if someone had attempted to blackmail him, he was fully prepared to "run right down to Security and tell them."

That so many intelligence officials were involved in the sex clubs, had contact with the Koechers, and never were asked to reveal it in any investigation is a devastating comment on the current state of counterintelligence in the United States. Though evidence of Paisley's involvement was easily obtainable, investigators for the CIA's Office of Security, the FBI, and the Senate Intelligence Committee all failed to follow up leads on the swinging groups.

Addams Family Little Movie

[Dr. Pinder-Schloss] [Heavy German Accent] Good Evening.


I am Dr. Pinder-Schloss.




He was found in Miami,
tangled in a tuna net.
It was just last month,
during the Hurricane Helga.


The sky, it was black like pitch.
The waves, they were walls of doom.


Can you imagine?


They drag him from the ocean,
from the very jaws of oblivion.
I’m telling you.


There were tests, so many tests.


A complete psychological profile.
At long last,
the Florida Department of the Fish and the Game,


they say, lo and behold,
oh my, oh my, oh my …


go tell it on the mountains,
he is your brother.


[Gomez Addams] [Crying]


[Dr. Pinder-Schloss] Boom! They give him to me at Human Services,


and I am bringing him, after all these years,


after who knows what heartache,


after the naked and the dead,


I am bringing him home to you.

[Margaret Alford] That’s preposterous.


Isn’t that the most ridiculous thing you’ve ever heard?


[Gomez Addams] It certainly is.


[Tully Alford] Ahh!

[Gomez Addams] Now you’re back.


[Tully Alford] Yes, back to share your joys, your sorrows –


Hey, everything.


[Margaret Alford] Well, I just don't know.

[Tully Alford] Honey, how does this work, again?

[Margaret Alford] An infant would understand.



[Grandmama] Ha ha ha.

[Morticia Addams] Fester Addams


home at long last.


[Fester Addams] Well, at least for a week.


[Morticia Addams] A week?


[Gomez Addams] Don’t be ridiculous. You’re home.

[Fester Addams] Sorry, but I have to get back.


Got a lot of things cooking in the Bermuda Triangle.

[Morticia Addams] Oh, Gomez –


The Bermuda Triangle.


[Gomez Addams] Devil’s Island.


[Morticia Addams] The black hole of Calcutta.

[Gomez Addams] Excuse us.


[Morticia Addams] Second honeymoon.



[Morticia Addams] Dr. Pinder-Schloss,


will you be staying with us, too?


[Dr. Pinder-Schloss] No, no. I must be going.

But I will be back, you can bet,

to be checking on Fester’s adjustment.


[Pugsley Addams] Cool.


[Wednesday Addams] Nobody gets out of the Bermuda Triangle,
not even for a vacation.
Everyone knows that.


[Dr. Pinder-Schloss] Oh, my little bundle.
So much you don’t understand.


The human spirit, it is a hard thing to kill.


[Grandmama] Even with a chain saw.

-- The Addams Family, directed by Barry Sonnenfeld

But, perhaps more significantly, Paisley also crossed paths with former Washington Post reporter Carl Bernstein at several parties. In the opinion of some people interviewed for this book, the fact that Paisley was serving as CIA liaison to the White House Plumbers at the time of his meeting Bernstein at sex parties raises many interesting questions. Could Bernstein's sexual activities, they ask, have made him vulnerable to pressure from a man like Paisley who may have wanted to get specific news stories slanted in a certain way? Bernstein denies even knowing Paisley. In a December 1979 telephone interview, Bernstein denied having attended any such parties. A few days later he called back to say, "I may have attended the parties, but I never met anyone named John Paisley."

Half a dozen Paisley intimates place Bernstein and Paisley at the same sex parties beginning as early as 1971. Donald Burton recalls: "Carl Bernstein, when I first met him, was going to the parties about 1971. I didn't know who he was .... One day he says to me or my wife Nancy he is on to something big. He said he is working on something and something is going to come out. You know all we knew was here was this guy with long hair and I saw him at two or four of these parties and then he disappeared." [35]

In a more recent interview, Bernstein confirmed that he attended swinging parties, but claimed he did not know Paisley and "Paisley wasn't Deep Throat." "I gotta tell you off the bat, I don't even know who the guy is," Bernstein said. [36]

But the behavior of his reporting partner on the Watergate affair, Bob Woodward, in the aftermath of Paisley's disappearance, raises questions. Woodward, by 1978, was an editor at the Washington Post. After Paisley disappeared, Woodward assigned two reporters to investigate Carl Bernstein. When asked if he was aware of the investigation into his activities, Bernstein said, "Oh that's crazy, Jesus ... I think you got something very wrong there. I don't think there was such a thing." Bernstein said the question should be put to Woodward.

Woodward confirms that he and other Post editors authorized the investigation into Bernstein's activities. Woodward explained that two reporters came to him with "allegations about Carl and Paisley and he felt obliged to follow up." [37]

One of the reporters who did the follow-up, Timothy Robinson, enjoyed a reputation for being very careful. He was so concerned about the assignment at the time that he requested a meeting with the reporter from the Wilmington News-Journal who first broke the Paisley story to discuss what he said was an assignment Woodward had given him. Robinson was so nervous about meeting the reporter that it was arranged by a mutual source for the meeting to take place in the basement of the Federal Courthouse in Washington where the Watergate trials took place. [38]

"Deep Throat" was described, in Woodward and Bernstein's famed book All the President's Men, as Woodward's source in the Executive Branch. The authors say that it was the Post's managing editor at that time, Howard Simmons, who dubbed Woodward's source "Deep Throat" because of the source's desire for secrecy and the pornographic movie in vogue at the time.

Was the fact that Bernstein was attending sex parties with the CIA's liaison with the White House Plumbers just a coincidence, or was that how the source really obtained his name? Both Bernstein and Woodward deny it.

Another bizarre connection of Paisley with the persona of "Deep Throat" is his possession of a Washington Post newspaper delivery agent's identification number in his own name. The number and ID turned out to be fraudulent. But why would a spy like Paisley need or even want such identification? If it was not to meet secretly with a reporter, one possibility might be that he simply wanted to have access to the Washington Post complex itself, on 15th Street in Washington. The newspaper's loading dock shares a common alley with the Soviet Embassy. Paisley would eventually move to an apartment two blocks from the embassy. Another possibility is that Paisley was using the newspaper's delivery system for dead drops and communication with agents to set up meetings.

Another point made in All the President's Men is that "if Deep Throat wanted a meeting -- which was rare -- there was a different procedure. Each morning, Woodward would check page 20 of his New York Times, delivered to his apartment house before 7:00 A.M. If a meeting was requested, the page number would be circled and the hands of a clock indicating the time of the rendezvous would appear in a lower corner of the page. Woodward did not know how Deep Throat got to his paper."

Woodward said flatly that Paisley was not Deep Throat. He then said: "You know, if Deep Throat were someone who was dead, we would name him." The problem is that there is no conclusive evidence that Paisley is dead.

What worries counterintelligence officials is not simply the aspect of Paisley meeting Bernstein or even giving him information. The haunting possibility that Paisley may have been working for Soviet intelligence and may have been under instruction to leak embarrassing material about the Nixon administration looms over the entire episode. It is also possible that Paisley may have been attending the parties to collect potentially damaging information on reporters like Bernstein or on other intelligence officials. Was Paisley collecting this information for David Young and the Plumbers -- or for the KGB?



Chapter Three: Paisley: The Plumbers

1. Interview with Phil Waggener, July 22, 1988.

2. Deposition of Maryann Paisley, November 5, 1980 (Maryann Paisley v. The Travelers Insurance Company).

3. Ibid.

4. Angleton made these comments in the aftermath of Paisley's 1978 disappearance.

5. The Imperial Defence College still accepts CIA staff today. While the course work varies from year to year, it has remained approximately the same as it was when Paisley attended.

6. Interview with Edward Paisley, October 30, 1987.

7. The existence of the box was discovered when one of the authors of the present work, Joe Trento, then a reporter for the Wilmington News Journal, learned that Paisley had given the box number at Greenham Common to the alumni office at the University of Chicago.

8. Interview with Edward Paisley, October 30, 1987.

9. None of Paisley's colleagues, and nothing in his files released under the Freedom of Information Act, explain either why he would be as pressed in London as Maryann describes, or why he would have a need for the post-office box.

10. Interview with Dale and Mary Paisley and Patrick and Katherine Lenahan, August 11, 1987.

11. Edward Paisley is convinced that his father was approached by the Soviets during this time, and that he was instructed by the CIA to play along with the approach. That might be an explanation for the events in London, but it is an explanation that Paisley's CIA superiors say is simply not true.

12. Interview with Bruce Clarke by author Joe Trento, November 1978. Interview with Hank Knoche, February 13, 1988.

13. First reported on ABC's "World News Tonight," on March 5, 1979.

14. Interview with Edward Paisley, October 30, 1987.

15. A big, rawboned man with bright red hair who stood taller than President Johnson was put in charge of CHAOS. Richard Ober was carried on the National Security Council staff as an aide. This position gave him instant access to the President and the White House staff so that he could keep them apprised of CHAOS'S progress in linking the KGB to the antiwar movement. Since very few, if any, real links between the communists and the American anti-Vietnam War movement were found in the three years the program operated during the Johnson administration, one might assume that Ober would be among the first to be shipped back to Langley, and the operation shut down when Nixon took office. But just the opposite occurred. Ober quickly gained direct access to Nixon; his position was enhanced, not downgraded. As one former military man assigned to the Nixon White House put it, "When Haldeman and Ehrlichman came in, this guy spoke their language and appeared to help them get through the barriers that were up at CIA." It was from the CHAOS files that Nixon compiled his enemy list. After only five months in office, the new administration began a program of wiretaps on White House aides and reporters whom they deemed untrustworthy. These wiretaps followed news reports that were leaked to the media detailing the Nixon administration's secret bombing of Cambodia. By 1971, rumors were flying within the CIA that some sort of massive domestic surveillance program was under way and that the intelligence services were somehow involved. In fact, CHAOS was suspected of being merely an appendage of James Jesus Angleton's counterintelligence shop. It wasn't. Richard Helms, who spent much of his later career trying to talk two presidents out of making the CIA continue to break the laws against domestic spying, allowed CHAOS to continue because he thought he had no choice. He was under orders from the President. Angleton, of course, was given copies of everything relating to CI from the CHAOS program.

16. Young had first met Henry Kissinger in the Rockefeller campaign of 1968. After Nixon was elected, Young volunteered his services and was made a lawyer on the NSC staff. Young went to work for Kissinger with high hopes in 1969. According to others who were NSC aides at the time, Young picked out Kissinger's clothes while Young's wife handled Kissinger's laundry. John Lockwood, a friend of Kissinger's, suggested that Young would make a good appointment secretary for the new national security adviser. But Young, according to Kissinger, did not get along with Alexander Haig, nor did he work out as Kissinger's appointment secretary. Kissinger sent him off to work "on files" in the White House Situation Room. Was Young really "downgraded," as Kissinger claimed, or did he remain a mysterious force on Kissinger's staff? Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Seymour Hersh points out in the The Price of Power, his book about Kissinger, that Young continued to be invited to the most sensitive meetings in the Nixon administration after his transfer to work on declassifying files. An example Hersh uses is that Young attended a session with top Atomic Energy Commission officials on the subject of a security clearance for a company in Pennsylvania that was suspected of diverting two hundred pounds of highly enriched uranium to Israel.

17. This entire history is detailed in a FBI Washington Field Office memorandum based on an interview with David Young on July 3, 1972. This interview was part of the early FBI probe into Watergate that seems to have missed the point.

18. Specifically, the administration made a major effort to leak embarrassing information about the Kennedy administration on the Bay of Pigs, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and the fall of the Diem government in South Vietnam. All this was aimed at neutralizing the man Nixon was convinced was his chief political rival -- Senator Edward M. Kennedy. Though Kennedy's presidential ambitions had already been destroyed by his involvement in the Chappaquiddick automobile accident -- costing the life of a young volunteer for his late brother Robert -- Nixon was still obsessed with the Kennedys. Colson and Young began to ferret out all the information they could that showed bad judgment by the Kennedys and their appointees. Various government agencies, including the State Department and the CIA, were ordered to turn over such material. But the CIA frustrated the Nixon administration's efforts to get the documents they wanted. The Agency would give the White House only what it specifically asked for. Unless they knew what to ask for, the kind of damaging documentation Colson believed existed could not be obtained. Colson ordered Howard Hunt to examine documents, including the Pentagon Papers, to find material that could harm the reputation of the Kennedys. At the same time, Young and Colson began personally interviewing people involved in the policies in the hopes that they would be willing to cast a negative light on what went on. Hunt interviewed old colleagues at the CIA who were involved in Saigon with the overthrow of Diem. While Young was working with the CIA to release files embarrassing to the Kennedys, efforts were implemented to tighten up the release of any materials that reflected negatively on Nixon from his vice-presidential days during the Eisenhower administration.

19. Interview with William Branigan, the former FBI counterintelligence head.

20. This information comes from three former subordinates of James J. Angleton. Clare Edward Petty, in an interview on July 21, 1988, said that he had a recollection of "someone being sent over on the leak problem at the White House .... Helms would have absolutely turned to Angleton on this sort of security question. That's how he always dealt with these things."

21. CIA memorandum dated September 30, 1971. Also a series of memoranda from Peter Earnest of the Office of Legislative Counsel of the CIA to Robert Gambino, the Director of Security at CIA, dealing with Paisley's connections to the Plumbers.

22. White House memorandum dated August 20, 1971, for John Erlichman from Egil Krogh and David Young.

23. Interview with Donald Burton, October 14, 1987.

24. Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, The Final Days (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1974), p. 24.

25. Interview with Robert Maheu, February 1988.

26. Interview with William Colby, June 6, 1988.

27. A number of veteran CIA and FBI men believe that it had the unmistakable touch of the FBI's onetime premier black-bag artist. This man, who has been in continuing legal trouble in recent years, refused through his lawyer to answer any questions about Romaine Street or the possibility that he was recruited for the Plumbers and worked with Paisley.

28. Interview with Dale and Mary Paisley, August 11, 1987.

29. The voucher was released in part under the Freedom of Information Act and lists a variety of Paisley's travel destinations for 1972 and 1973.

30. Interview with Katherine Lenahan, August 11, 1987.

31. The Washington, Virginia, records office contains land records and corporate resolutions laying out the deal for the lodge. The records clerk said no investigators had ever asked to see the file, previous to the author's visit.

32. The first detailed account of the Koecher story appeared in Washingtonian magazine in an article by Rudy Maxa and Phil Stanford in February 1987.

33. According to numerous CIA employees in positions to know.

34. Details of the case are based on court records (At Law No. 38430) filed in Fairfax, Virginia.

35. Interview with Donald Burton, October 14, 1987.

36. Interview with Carl Bernstein, December 12, 1987.

37. Interview with Bob Woodward, February 11, 1988.

38. Coauthor Joseph Trento was the Wilmington News-Journal reporter who had the meeting with Tim Robinson. Shortly after this conversation, Robinson left on a fellowship to Yale Law School and became the editor of the National Law Journal.
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Re: Mrs. Kay Griggs on How the Government Works

Postby admin » Tue Feb 13, 2018 4:02 am

Mom Can't Convince Herself Son Could Be Unabomber
by Associated Press
June 17, 1996 12:00 am



The mother of Theodore Kaczynski says she still can't comprehend that he could be the Unabomber as authorities suspect, but she supports another son's decision to turn him into the FBI.

"I just can't convince myself that he could've done it," Wanda Kaczynski, 79, of Scotia, N.Y., told The Washington Post in her first interview since her elder son was arrested on April 3 at his Montana cabin.Theodore Kaczynski, 54, has been charged only with possession of bomb components and not with any of the Unabomber attacks, which killed three people and injured 23 in nine states. He was turned in to authorities by his brother David, 46.

"I ponder endlessly over it," Wanda Kaczynski was quoted in the Post's Sunday editions. "What could I have done to keep him out of the wilderness? What could I have done to give him a happier life? And yet there were so many happy, wonderful times with the family. I just don't, I just don't know."

One particular episode from young Theodore's life haunts her: seeing him restrained on a Chicago hospital bed at age 9 months, his eyes crossed in fright, while doctors photographed an unusual case of hives that kept him hospitalized and isolated from his mother for a week.

She recalls he would not look at her when she arrived for the one visit allowed that week. And how the infant would not look at her when she returned to take him home.

When he was 4, the family pediatrician showed mother and son the photograph in the file of the baby pinned to the bed.

"Ted glanced at it and he looked away," she recalled. "He refused to look at it anymore. And I thought, `Oh my God, he's having the same feelings that he had when he was held down that way."

Now, she worries about David and Theodore - Theodore for whatever lies ahead and David for any guilt he might feel about turning his brother in to the FBI.

He told his mother what he was doing on March 23.

"At first I said, `It can't be,"' she recalled. "`It can't be Ted. First of all, he didn't have the money for all that traveling. And secondly, he hates to travel. And thirdly, I can't conceive of him doing anything like that. He's never been violent all his life."'

David cried and paced and told his mother he was sorry, they recalled.

"She immediately got up from her chair and hugged me and said that she felt just awful for what I'd gone through," David told the Post. "And I can't tell you what a rush of gratitude I felt toward her in that moment."
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Re: Mrs. Kay Griggs on How the Government Works

Postby admin » Tue Feb 13, 2018 4:30 am

A Few Good Men
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 2/12/18




A Few Good Men is a 1992 American legal drama film directed by Rob Reiner and starring Tom Cruise, Jack Nicholson, and Demi Moore, with Kevin Bacon, Kevin Pollak, Wolfgang Bodison, James Marshall, J. T. Walsh and Kiefer Sutherland in supporting roles. It was adapted for the screen by Aaron Sorkin from his play of the same name but includes contributions by William Goldman. The film revolves around the court-martial of two U.S. Marines charged with the murder of a fellow Marine and the tribulations of their lawyers as they prepare a case to defend their clients.


U.S. Marines Lance Corporal Harold Dawson and Private Louden Downey are facing a general court-martial, accused of killing fellow Marine Private William Santiago at the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base in Cuba. Santiago compared unfavorably to his fellow Marines, had poor relations with them, and failed to respect the chain of command in attempts at being transferred to another base. An argument evolves between base commander Colonel Nathan Jessup and his officers: while Jessup's executive officer, Lieutenant Colonel Matthew Markinson, advocates that Santiago be transferred immediately, Jessup regards this as akin to surrender and orders Santiago's commanding officer, Lieutenant Jonathan James Kendrick, to train Santiago to become a better Marine.

When Dawson and Downey are later arrested for Santiago's murder, naval investigator and lawyer Lieutenant commander JoAnne Galloway suspects they carried out a "code red" order, a violent extrajudicial punishment. Galloway asks to defend them, but instead, the case is given to Lieutenant Daniel Kaffee, an inexperienced and unenthusiastic U.S. Navy lawyer. Initially, friction exists between Galloway, who resents Kaffee's tendency to plea bargain, and Kaffee, who resents Galloway's interference. Kaffee and the prosecutor, his friend Captain Jack Ross (USMC), negotiate a bargain, but Dawson and Downey refuse to go along. They insist they were ordered by Kendrick to shave Santiago's head, minutes after Kendrick publicly ordered the platoon not to touch the would-be victim, and did not intend their victim to die. Kaffee is finally won over by Galloway and takes the case to court.

In the course of the trial, the defense manages to establish the existence of "code red" orders at Guantanamo and that Dawson specifically had learned not to disobey any order, having been denied a promotion after helping out a fellow Marine who was under what could be seen as a "code red". However, the defense also suffers setbacks when a cross-examination reveals Downey was not actually present when Dawson and he supposedly received the "code red" order. Markinson reveals to Kaffee that Jessup never intended to transfer Santiago off the base, but commits suicide rather than testify in court because he feels that he had failed to do the right thing by protecting a Marine under his command.

Without Markinson's testimony, Kaffee believes the case lost and returns home in a drunken stupor, having come to regret he fought the case instead of arranging a plea bargain. Galloway, however, convinces Kaffee to call Jessup as a witness despite the risk of being court-martialled for smearing a high-ranking officer. Jessup initially outsmarts Kaffee's questioning, but is unnerved when the lawyer points out a contradiction in his testimony: Jessup had stated he wanted to transfer Santiago off the base for his own safety and that Marines never disobeyed orders. But, if he ordered his men to leave Santiago alone and if Marines always obey orders, then Santiago would not have been in danger. Unnerved by being caught in one of his own lies and disgusted by Kaffee's questioning of the imperative to impose discipline within his unit, an enraged Jessup extols his and the military's importance to national security, and when asked point-blank if he ordered the "code red" he bellows with contempt that he did. As he justifies his actions, an exasperated Jessup is arrested; Kendrick is later arrested for his actions, too.

Soon afterwards, Dawson and Downey are cleared of the murder charge, but found guilty of "conduct unbecoming a United States Marine" and dishonorably discharged. Dawson accepts the verdict, but Downey does not understand what they had done wrong. Dawson explains they had failed to stand up for those too weak to fight for themselves, like Santiago. As the two prepare to leave, Kaffee tells Dawson he does not need a patch on his arm to have honor. Dawson, who had previously shown contempt for Kaffee for not understanding the Marine ethos, recognizes him as an officer and renders a salute.


• Tom Cruise as Lieutenant Daniel Kaffee, USN, JAG Corps
• Jack Nicholson as Colonel Nathan R. Jessup, USMC
• Demi Moore as Lieutenant Commander JoAnne Galloway, USN, JAG Corps
• Kevin Bacon as Captain Jack Ross, USMC, Judge Advocate Division
• Kiefer Sutherland as Lieutenant Jonathan James Kendrick, USMC
• Kevin Pollak as Lieutenant Sam Weinberg, USN, JAG Corps
• Wolfgang Bodison as Lance Corporal Harold Dawson, USMC
• James Marshall as Private First Class Louden Downey, USMC
• J. T. Walsh as Lieutenant Colonel Matthew Andrew Markinson, USMC
• J. A. Preston as Judge (Colonel) Julius Alexander Randolph, USMC
• Michael DeLorenzo as Private William T. Santiago, USMC
• Noah Wyle as Corporal Jeffrey Owen Barnes, USMC
• Cuba Gooding Jr. as Corporal Carl Edward Hammaker, USMC
• Xander Berkeley as Captain Whitaker, USN
• Matt Craven as Lieutenant Dave Spradling, USN, JAG Corps
• John M. Jackson as Captain West, USN, JAG Corps
• Christopher Guest as Commander (Dr.) Stone, USN, MC
• Joshua Malina as Jessup's clerk, Tom, USMC
• Aaron Sorkin as a lawyer bragging in a tavern

Note: Joshua Malina is the only actor to reprise his role from the original Broadway production.


Screenwriter Aaron Sorkin got the inspiration to write the source play, a courtroom drama called A Few Good Men, from a phone conversation with his sister Deborah, who had graduated from Boston University Law School and signed up for a three-year stint with the U.S. Navy Judge Advocate General's Corps. She was going to Guantanamo Bay to defend a group of Marines who came close to killing a fellow Marine in a hazing ordered by a superior officer. Sorkin took that information and wrote much of his story on cocktail napkins while bartending at the Palace Theatre on Broadway.[3] His roommates and he had purchased a Macintosh 512K, so when he returned home, he would empty his pockets of the cocktail napkins and type them into the computer, forming a basis from which he wrote many drafts for A Few Good Men.[4]

In 1988, Sorkin sold the film rights for his play to producer David Brown before it premiered, in a deal reportedly "well into six figures".[5] Brown had read an article in The New York Times about Sorkin's one-act play Hidden in This Picture, and he found out Sorkin also had a play called A Few Good Men that was having off-Broadway readings.[6]

William Goldman did an uncredited rewrite of the script that Sorkin liked so much, he incorporated the changes made into the stage version.[7]

Brown was producing a few projects at TriStar Pictures, and he tried to interest them in making A Few Good Men into a film, but his proposal was declined due to the lack of star-actor involvement. Brown later got a call from Alan Horn at Castle Rock Entertainment, who was anxious to make the film. Rob Reiner, a producing partner at Castle Rock, opted to direct it.[6]

The film had a production budget of $33,000,000.[8]

Nicholson would later comment of the $5 million he received for his role, "It was one of the few times when it was money well spent."[9]

The film starts with a performance of "Semper Fidelis" by a U.S. Marine Corps marching band, and a Silent Drill performed by the Texas A&M University Corps of Cadets Fish Drill Team (portraying the United States Marine Corps Silent Drill Platoon).[10][11]

Several former Navy JAG lawyers have been identified as the basis for Tom Cruise's character Lt. Kaffee. These include Don Marcari (now an attorney in Virginia), former U.S. Attorney David Iglesias, Chris Johnson (now practicing in California), and Walter Bansley III (now practicing in Connecticut.) However, in a September 15, 2011, article in The New York Times, Sorkin was quoted as saying, “The character of Dan Kaffee in A Few Good Men is entirely fictional and was not inspired by any particular individual.”[12][13][14][15][16]

Wolfgang Bodison was a film location scout when he was asked to take part in a screen test for the part of Dawson.[17]


Box office

The film premiered at the Odeon Cinema, Manchester, England[18] and opened on December 11, 1992, in 1,925 theaters. It grossed $15,517,468 in its opening weekend and was the number-one film at the box office for the next three weeks. Overall, it grossed $141,340,178 in the U.S. and $101,900,000 internationally for a total of $243,240,178.[19]

Critical response

On Rotten Tomatoes the film has an approval rating of 81% based on 58 reviews, with an average rating of 7/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "An old-fashioned courtroom drama with a contemporary edge, A Few Good Men succeeds on the strength of its stars, with Tom Cruise, Demi Moore, and especially Jack Nicholson delivering powerful performances that more than compensate for the predictable plot."[20] On Metacritic the film has a score of 62 out of 100, based on 21 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews."[21] Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A+" on an A+ to F scale, one of fewer than 60 films in the history of the service to earn the score.[22]

Peter Travers of Rolling Stone magazine said, "That the performances are uniformly outstanding is a tribute to Rob Reiner (Misery), who directs with masterly assurance, fusing suspense and character to create a movie that literally vibrates with energy."[23] Richard Schickel in Time magazine called it "an extraordinarily well-made movie, which wastes no words or images in telling a conventional but compelling story."[24] Todd McCarthy in Variety magazine predicted, "The same histrionic fireworks that gripped theater audiences will prove even more compelling to filmgoers due to the star power and dramatic screw-tightening."[25] Roger Ebert was less enthusiastic in the Chicago Sun-Times, giving it two-and-a-half out of four stars and finding its major flaw was revealing the courtroom strategy to the audience before the climactic scene between Cruise and Nicholson. Ebert wrote, "In many ways this is a good film, with the potential to be even better than that. The flaws are mostly at the screenplay level; the film doesn't make us work, doesn't allow us to figure out things for ourselves, is afraid we'll miss things if they're not spelled out."[26]

Widescreenings noted that for Tom Cruise's character Daniel Kaffee, "Sorkin interestingly takes the opposite approach of Top Gun, where Cruise also starred as the protagonist. In Top Gun, Cruise plays Mitchell who is a "hotshot military underachiever who makes mistakes because he is trying to outperform his late father. Where Maverick Mitchell needs to rein in the discipline, Daniel Kaffee needs to let it go, finally see what he can do". Sorkin and Reiner are praised in gradually unveiling Kaffee's potential in the film.[27]

Awards and honors

Academy Awards nominations
The film was nominated for four Academy Awards:[28]

Best Picture
Best Supporting Actor (Jack Nicholson)
Best Film Editing (Robert Leighton)
Best Sound Mixing (Kevin O'Connell, Rick Kline and Robert Eber)

Golden Globe nominations

The film was nominated for five Golden Globe Awards:

Best Motion Picture – Drama
Best Director (Rob Reiner)
Best Actor (Tom Cruise)
Best Supporting Actor (Jack Nicholson)
Best Screenplay (Aaron Sorkin)

Other honors

The film is recognized by American Film Institute in these lists:

2003: AFI's 100 Years...100 Heroes & Villains:
Colonel Nathan R. Jessep – Nominated Villain[29]
2005: AFI's 100 Years...100 Movie Quotes:
Col. Nathan Jessep: "You can't handle the truth!" – #29[30]
2008: AFI's 10 Top 10:
5 Courtroom Drama Film[31]


1. "A Few Good Men (1992 – Box Office Mojo)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved August 5, 2014.
2. "A Few Good Men – Budget". Nash Information Services, LLC. Retrieved June 22, 2011.
3. "London Shows – A Few Good Men". E&OE. Archived from the original on June 8, 2011. Retrieved June 22, 2011.
4. "Aaron Sorkin interview". Archived from the original on July 16, 2011. Retrieved June 22, 2011.
5. Henry III, William (November 27, 1989). "Marine Life". Time. Archived from the original on March 7, 2008.
6. b Prigge, Steven (October 2004). Movie Moguls Speak: Interviews with Top Film Producers. McFarland & Company. pp. 12–13. ISBN 978-0-7864-1929-6.
7. "A Few Good Men (1992)". IMDb.
8. "A Few Good Men – budget". Nash Information Services. Retrieved June 22, 2011.
9. Jack Nicholson. IMDb
10. Daily Dose of Aggie History (December 11, 2016). "Dec. 11, 1992: A&M Fish Drill Team appears in 'A Few Good Men'". Retrieved May 19, 2017.
11. Nading, Tanya (February 11, 2001). "Corps Fish Drill Team reinstated — Front Page". College Media Network. Archived from the original on June 23, 2009. Retrieved July 18, 2009.
12. Glauber, Bill (April 10, 1994). "Ex-Marine who felt 'A Few Good Men' maligned him is mysteriously murdered". The Baltimore Sun. Retrieved September 21, 2010.
13. Gisick, Michael (May 10, 2007). "Fired U.S. Attorney David Iglesias embraces the media in his quest for vindication". The Albuquerque Tribune. Archived from the original on November 5, 2010. Retrieved September 21, 2010.
14. Johnson, Christopher D. "Christopher D. Johnson, Esquire". Retrieved September 21, 2010.
15. Beach, Randall (March 18, 2009). "Allegation delays homicide trial". New Haven Register. Retrieved October 28, 2010.
16. "Lawyer Didn't Act Like a "Few Good Men," Cops Say". NBC Connecticut. August 26, 2010. Retrieved October 28, 2010.
17. Noted in the A Few Good Men DVD commentary
18. "Historic Odeon faces final curtain". Manchester Evening News. February 15, 2007. Retrieved October 23, 2014.
19. "A Few Good Men – box office data". Nash Information Services, LLC. Retrieved June 22, 2011.
20. "A Few Good Men (1992)". Flixster Inc. Retrieved June 22,2011.
21. "A Few Good Men reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved July 25,2009.
22. "CinemaScore".
23. "Rotten Tomatoes – A Few Good Men review". Flixster Inc. Retrieved June 22, 2011.
24. Schickel, Richard (December 14, 1992). "Close-Order Moral Drill". Time Monday, Dec. 14, 1992. Time, Inc. Retrieved June 22, 2011.
25. McCarthy, Todd (November 12, 1992). "A Few Good Men – Review". RBI, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. Retrieved June 22, 2011.
26. Ebert, Roger (December 11, 1992). "A Few Good Men". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved April 7, 2016.
27. [1]
28. "The 65th Academy Awards (1993) Nominees and Winners". Retrieved October 22, 2011.
29. "AFI's 100 Years...100 Heroes & Villains Nominees" (PDF). Retrieved August 13, 2016.
30. "AFI's 100 Years...100 Movie Quotes" (PDF). American Film Institute. Retrieved August 13, 2016.
31. "AFI's 10 Top 10: Top 10 Courtroom Drama". American Film Institute. Retrieved August 13, 2016.
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