Sunday, August 02, 2009
David Atlee Phillips, former head of the CIA's Western Hemisphere Division (counter-espionage division), described himself as a Kennedy supporter and a moderate democrat. His wife once described him as a man who "lied in his sleep."
On the day of the Bay of Pigs invasion, after helping to organize the attack, he came home from work and sat under a tree in his yard and sobbed for hours when Kennedy refused to help back the unprovoked assault and it ended in failure... whereas on the day Kennedy was killed his wife said that he walked in the house in a good mood, went straight to the refrigerator and asked how her day had been.
His own brother refused to speak to him for 6 years and then called him when Phillips was in the hospital dying of cancer to find out if he was in Dallas on 'that day'. Phillips began crying and said "Yes" when his brother hung up on him.
When he died on 7th July, 1988, Phillips left behind an unpublished manuscript. The novel is about a CIA officer who lived in Mexico City. In the novel the character states:
"I was one of the two case officers who handled Lee Harvey Oswald. After working to establish his Marxist bona fides, we gave him the mission of killing Fidel Castro in Cuba. I helped him when he came to Mexico City to obtain a visa, and when he returned to Dallas to wait for it I saw him twice there. We rehearsed the plan many times: In Havana Oswald was to assassinate Castro with a sniper's rifle from the upper floor window of a building on the route where Castro often drove in an open jeep. Whether Oswald was a double-agent or a psycho I'm not sure, and I don't know why he killed Kennedy. But I do know he used precisely the plan we had devised against Castro. Thus the CIA did not anticipate the President's assassination but it was responsible for it. I share that guilt."
Whether or not Phillips was involved the Kennedy assassination plot doesn't really detract from how fascinating he was. It's too easy to make him a one-stop solution to the cover-up and wager that he was "Maurice Bishop", the man who was well positioned to,, and was allegedly seen handling Oswald. Without any hard evidence and just by using logical deduction it's clear that Phillips lied constantly about what he knew from just looking at where he was, when he was and what his job was. As a rule, no one would ever trust any books written by CIA agents after they've retired (especially a disinformation specialist), but there could be more truth to his unfinished manuscript than one might believe.
Since viewing the entire trajectory of Oswald's life is basically a game of 'what-if?'... it's worthwhile to ask if Phillips semi-confession fits a potentially valid scenario. And it does in several ways... Maybe the entire Mexico City puzzle could be simpler than researchers make it out to be...
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