Oswald The Defector

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.



  • 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?