Lee Harvey Oswald

The conventional wisdom:

  • The conventional wisdom is that Lee Harvey Oswald became a communist around the age of sixteen when he began making a display of reading communist literature and then sent a letter seeking to join the Socialist Party of America. The Warren Commission speculated that: “his study of Communist literature, which might appear to be inconsistent with his desire to join the Marines, could have been another manifestation of Oswald’s rejection of his environment.”
  • Oswald notoriously demonstrated his communist proclivities while in the Marine Corps. Most of those who knew him in the Marines, at Atsugi and at the other bases, were able to recount anecdotes that suggested to the Warren Commission that Oswald was anxious to publicize his liking for things Russian.

The evidence:

  • At age sixteen, around the time he began making a display of reading communist literature, Oswald was involved in the Civil Air Patrol where his commander was David Ferrie.   David Ferrie was a rabid anti-communist who was known to exert tremendous influence over many of the young men in his Civil Air Patrol squadron including urging several boys to join seminaries or to join the armed forces.
  • In the Marine Corps, Oswald openly flaunted himself as a Russian/communist sympathizer, to the extent that he had his name written in Russian on one of his jackets, loudly played records of Russian songs, addressed others as “Comrade” and regularly received a Russian and communist newspapers to which he had a subscription.  To quote Philip H. Melanson, Chancellor Professor of Policy Studies at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth: “The U.S. Marine Corps in 1958 was not exactly a bastion of liberal tolerance and freethinking.”
  • Despite a weakness in the necessary qualifications, Oswald was made a radar operator at Atsugi Air Force Base, one of the homes to the super secret U-2 Spy Plane and held a “confidential” clearance throughout his enlistment. The Russians had an obsessive interest in acquiring information about the U-2 Spy Plane.

Query:

  • Were the US Intelligence agencies unaware that the Russians were seeking information as to the U-2?  Did the US Intelligence agencies have any interest in preventing the Russians from acquiring that information – or, perhaps, in acquiring incorrect information?
  • Was the Marine Corps unaware that they had this openly pro-communist prancing around the super secret U-2 Spy Plane?  If aware, were they unconcerned about the danger he posed? Or, perhaps, were they creating what is known in the spy game as a “legend?”

The conventional wisdom:

  • In Russia, Oswald demonstrated his treachery by informing Soviet officials that that he had been a radar operator in the Marine Corps who knew something of special interest, and that he would give the Soviets any information he possessed.
  • During his time in the Soviet Union he worked in some nondescript job at the nondescript Belorussian Radio and Television Factory in Minsk. Oswald being assigned to this “radio” factory had nothing to do with his experience as a radar operator at a home base for the super secret U-2 spy plane.

The evidence:

  • The CIA had a very great interest in the Belorussian Radio and Television Factory. The Agency actively collected & carefully accumulated reams of information on that  “radio” plant and they maintained that large volume of information in the Office of Research and Reports.
  • At the request of Richard Bissell, the CIA project manager for the U-2, the Lockheed ‘Skunk Works’ flight engineers produced four false test flight manuals containing incorrect information on the plane’s weight, speed, altitude, and load factor limits for the purpose of getting this misleading information into the hands of the Soviets.

Query:

  • Why was the CIA so interested in this particular “radio” factory?
  • Did that interest play any role in qualifying Oswald as a radar operator despite his weakness in the necessary qualifications for being a radar operator?
  • Did Oswald’s experience as a radar operator at a home base for the U-2 spy plane play any role in the Soviets assigning Oswald to this “radio” factory?
  • Did Richard Bissell succeed in getting one of the four false test flight manuals for the U-2 into the hands of the Soviets?

The Conventional Wisdom

  • Upon re-defection to the U.S in June 1962, Oswald became a pro-Castro zealot. He was actively involved with pro-Castro activities including the Fair Play for Cuba organization.
  • Oswald got into a fight & was arrested while passing out leaflets seeking recruits to join the New Orleans chapter of the nationwide “Fair Play for Cuba Committee.”

 

The Evidence

  • Oswald showcased a number of activities that would lead one to view him as a pro-Castro communist.  However, upon examination it was all facade. Oswald did not have even one human contact that was on the left. To the contrary, every human contact he has was on the right, as for example, George De Mohrenschildt, a sophisticated intimate of avowed right wing oilmen, and a man with extensive CIA connections over many years
  • There was no New Orleans chapter of “Fair Play for Cuba.”  This non-existent entity consisted of its lone member, Lee Harvey Oswald.  Despite the absence of any actual office for this pretend group, the leaflets listed its address as a building housing the private investigation office of Guy Banister, a retired FBI agent excessively involved in anti-Communist activities that included running background investigations to ferret out pro-Castro sympathizers on people seeking join the Cuban Revolutionary Council [CRC], an anti-Castro group run by Sergio Arcacha Smith.

 

Query

  • If someone showed some interest in this non-existent pro-Castro group by responding to the listed address, would they find a pro-Castro group there, or would they find someone whose job it was to identify pro-Castro sympathizers?