Venezuela – Bay of Pigs Redux?


In the Spring of 1961 a lightly armed group of Cuban exiles invaded the south coast of Cuba.  They had little air support and were dwarfed in number by the armed forces of revolutionary Cuba which when brought to bear at the site of the invasion quickly crushed them.  The members of the invading force were captured and imprisoned.  They were held for a time and then released to the US after prolonged negotiations.  Some of them were offered admission to the US armed forces and a number accepted.

The Eisenhower Administration had approved this project.  It was meant to overthrow the new  Communist government of Cuba. In 1960 when it became apparent that the Fidelistas were intent on allying themselves with the USSR Eisenhower decided to try to remove that government.  Before the intentions and true loyalties of the revolutionaries became clear the US government as well as most Americans had been romantically sympathetic to the notion of a tiny band of long exiled rebels having incited a country wide rebellion that overthrew the dastardly caudillo Fulgencio Batista from a base in the jungled mountains of eastern Cuba.  How grand, Robin Hoods with beards come to free the people!  Unfortunately for that view, the emerging Cuba/USSR alliance quickly showed that it would bear fruit in something really dangerous like the emplacement of Soviet IRBMs in Cuba in 1962.

In response to a perceived emerging threat Eisenhower authorized the Bay of Pigs invasion project in a presidential finding that was altogether legal under US law.  The laws in question were the 1947/1958 National Security Acts which allowed the president to order the CIA (not the armed forces) to carry out covert military actions of the Bay of Pigs variety.  The operation was planned by CIA in the expectation that the Cuban people, if given the inspiration of a Cuban manned invasion force, would rise and throw out the Communists.  The plan included stand-by US air support in case things got "sticky" after the landing.  On that basis the Joint Chiefs of Staff gave the CIA plan their blessing.

The new Kennedy Administration detested the Castro government and decided to continue invasion preparations with one critical emendation.  The open use of US air power to support the invasion was taken out of the plan.  The Camelot crew at the Kennedy White House did not realize how dangerous it was to remove that pillar of the plan.  No one bothered to inform the JCS that the plan had been changed.

In the event, the Cuban people did not rise to support the invasion, The Cuban armed forces crushed the effort and a key part of that success was the uncontested application of Cuban air attacks on the beachhead.

The whole thing had been a shoestring operation concocted by the militarily inept paramilitary section of the CIA run by former but failed junior military officers assisted by a few  sergeants borrowed from the active armed forces for this project.

I knew one such.  When I was in the 8th SFGA in the Panama Canal Zone I was for a time in the staff intelligence section of group headquarters.  The senior sergeant in the section was a master sergeant of Nicaraguan birth who had been borrowed by CIA to be the chief trainer of the paratroop component of the invasion force.  He trained these Cubans in Guatemala while posing as a retired US Army senior airborne officer and then sent them on their way to the Bay of Pigs while standing alongside the runway waving at each plane as it took off.

Does this sound fantastical and unlikely?  It does to me as well, but it was all true.  One day I was in the Ft. Gulick PX with Sergeant Gonzalo ——- when we were approached by a US Army captain who looked Gonzalo up and down and said "Colonel Jim!  You are a sergeant?"  He was amazed.  He was one of the Bay of Pigs prisoners who had been taken into the US Army after release from prison.  "Colonel Jim" had trained him and his comrades for war in Cuba.

The  analogy to whatever it is that the US has been covertly trying to do in Venezuela is obvious with some differences:

1.  There is no exile military force trained by the CIA for insertion as a rallying point for the the anti-Communist forces among the people and armed forces of Venezuela.

2.  There is no evidence that First in his Class and the Stache have persuaded the Commander in Chief to commit US military support in any way to the Venezuela project of regime change.  In the Bay of Pigs case the US military stood ready in the background to intervene if ordered to do so but were never so ordered.  That does not seem to be the case now.

3.  There is some evidence that most Latin American states would like to see regime change in Venezuela.  That was not true in 1961.

4.  There is no USSR.  The attempt to portray the Communist government of Venezuela as a Russian or Chinese bridgehead in the Western Hemisphere is just absurd.

My SWAG is that Maduro's troops and police will crush today's "revolt," arrest Guaido and his handful of military supporters and put them on trial. The US will do nothing but wring its hands in frustration. 

Remember – Analysis is not Advocacy.  I would love to see the Maduro government fall.  pl

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57 Responses to Venezuela – Bay of Pigs Redux?

  1. Ligurio says:

    When you say “I would love to see the Maduro government fall,” do you mean that you would love to see the Venezuelan people politically accomplish the toppling of the Maduro government via regular or irregular means, or do you mean that you would love to see the US and allied states come up with and implement a successful strategy for toppling the Maduro government by force, assuming such a strategy existed? This is not intended as a snarky question. I am legitimately interested in whether you would–in principle–condone US interventionism in this case as just or whether you believe it to be unjust. You could hold the latter while still wishing the Maduro government would fall. (I would love to see the toppling of the Saudi monarchy, for example, but I also believe that it would be unjust for the US to use military force to help bring that about.)

  2. O'Shawnessey says:

    “Stache” is nice, but, for me, “Pussy Bolton” just seems more appropriate. And maybe “El Gordo” would represent an ad hominem attack on “First In His Class,” but doesn’t it also just somehow fit him better?
    Why would you love to see Maduro fall? Would some US-installed Bolsonaro or Moreno or Duque Marquez will make the lives better for the people of Venezuela?

  3. turcopolier says:

    How about “Gordito?” I would tell both you and Ligurio that I am opposed to repressive governments of both left and right. IMO socialist governments inevitably turn to repression to enforce their ideology. IMO the Scandinavian socialist governments are showing their true colors in the effort to suppress criticism of their desire to see people as building blocks in a utopian future. This can be seen for example is the willingness of the Swedish government to suppress criticism of their immigration policy which has made Stockholm the rape capital of the world.

  4. turcopolier says:

    Ligurio – I am opposed to interventionism. period. I would like to see the Venezuelans get rid of the Maduro government but I don’t want the US government to be involved in that.

  5. Bill Hatch says:

    Pence’s Tweet of “We are with you” reminds me of our encouragement of the Hungarians in 1956. Before taking to the streets Venezuelans may want to review the Hungarian revolt. Of course Maduro has no Soviet Army to bail him out. But American words do not mean American troops.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Great sea story about the PX confrontation. Thanks, man.
    I agree with your analysis, hopes, and reticence for involvement.
    I figured out Stache, but had to research First-in-his-class. Didn’t even realize Pompeo had been a Woop.

  7. b says:

    Today’s clownish coup attempt failed. Guaido has no support but in the wealthy Altamira quarter where today’s coup attempt happened. All he had were six or so soldiers and another 24 who were duped and he tried to sell that as “the military is on my side”. It was a dangerous propaganda stunt. Luckily the Venezuelan government responded in a very cautious manner.
    The government of Venezuela is barely socialist and by no means communist. Just look who owns the means of production in Venezuela. It is not the government. Its the folks behind Guaido.
    Maduro seems to have the support of the general people and all the security forces.
    Venezuela, despite a U.S. sanction induced economic downturn, is still better off than the neighboring Colombia which is ruled by a U.S. proxy.
    It is no wonder than that the people stick to what they gained under the ‘socialist’ Chavista government.

  8. erik says:

    I have felt for at least 40 years, that overt use of military force by the U.S. to get rid of Saudi Govt. and ghetto-ize the place to curtail Wahabism would be in the interests of this country and the west in general. That would be as far as I’d go in supporting U.S. interventionism.

  9. rho says:

    “IMO socialist governments inevitably turn to repression to enforce their ideology.”
    Yes, socialism and communism are against human nature, and therefore these ideologies strive to create new, “socialist people”. And the only way to turn the people we have on this planet into such new “socialist people” is through repression.
    I am not sure if Sweden has crossed the dystopian line yet, but the repression is definitely growing all over Western Europe, you can see it in free speech being more and more curtailed every year.

  10. PacificaAdvocate says:

    Immigration has had nothing whatsoever to do with Sweden becoming the (falsely claimed) “Rape Capital of Europe/the World”. It has to do with how Sweden prosecutes sexual assault cases, and what it classifies as “rape.” For instance, Assange’s “rape” charge consisted of a woman claiming that he continued to have (otherwise consensual) sex with her after his condom broke. Also, Sweden tabulates crimes differently than the US & other parts of Europe:
    “In Sweden, each case of sexual violence is recorded as a separate incident. So for example, if someone says they were raped by a partner every day for a fortnight, officers will record 14 potential crimes. In other countries the claim could be logged as a single incident.
    Sweden also significantly broadened its definition of rape in 2005, which means the word “rape” can be used to record acts which would be called assault or bodily harm in other countries. ”
    Secondly, I find it curious that you failed to mention Castro’s visit to the US, where he asked the Eisenhower administration for official recognition and a protective alliance. In a quite famous incident, Nixon met with him only to dismiss the idea of ever cooperating with him–unless he submit to a relationship to the US based on the US colony of Puerto Rico. For obvious reasons, Castro rejected that outright.
    Nixon, let us not forget, was the product of the China Lobby, which destroyed the reputation both of Gen. Stilwell and Gen. Marshall, and led the charge on the mostly fictitious and milked-to-bloody Red Scare of the 50s-80s. Nixon was a key part of the McCarthy hearings, and his entire career was built upon the shattered careers of moderate politicians he smeared as “Communist”–often (as in the case of Alger Hiss) on the basis of manufactured evidence he actually knew was manufactured.
    Castro wasn’t the problem.

  11. notlurking says:

    Well said b….throughout history many left leaning governments that are hardly socialist have been beaten down by embargoes, sanctions and military interventions by the giant in the north…and then we go and say hey see socialism is no good….lol

  12. ISL says:

    Dear Colonel,
    Your SWAG seems correct. the current effort fizzled, pathetically, and rather predictably.
    Recently, US well-funded overthrow attempts in Syria and east Ukraine failed; but both were within the Russian zone of influence. Overall US influence is waning as US share of the global economy shrinks (compensated by military spending rising faster than economic growth – aka, Paul Kennedy/Rise & Fall). OTH, not long ago, the US was successful in an outright coup in Honduras a decade ago, currently failing in Venezuela.
    A decade ago, the US economy was significantly larger than China’s – now, this is reversed or comparable – depending on the measurement, but trends are in one direction.
    So: Is the Venezuela failure an indicator of waning US capacity (including political) in the western hemisphere or incompetence of the neo-cons believing their own propaganda. Its hard for me to believe that the IC did not (based on intercepts) understand that the military was firmly in Maduro’s camp, as is most of the public – facts reported by a number of on the ground journalists.
    On the one hand, there is a clear problem of policy by Bolton et al., who perceive reality through (neo-con) filters, that remove any objective analysis. Unfortunately, one has to go quite far back to find an administration that was realist-based – Bush 1, Reagan….
    Aside from long shot Tulsi, its improbable that realists will be running US FP anytime soon.
    That said, if the Venezuelan economy stops collapsing in a few months, then China is taking up the slack (in oil exports), which would signify a significant economic power shift even in the Western hemisphere. It seems like the price for Russia or China to help is to adjust the Venezuelan economy (as happened in Syria). As to whether they can succeed in forcing Venezuela to change (one commodity economies with no food security are easily screwed), well, the current Venezuela administration has few options.

  13. Eakans says:

    Interestingly enough, Venezuela has the largest proven oil reserves in the world. The timing of this escalation coincides nicely with the Iran sanction waiver. Maduro won’t go as easy as Pompeo thinks.

  14. turcopolier says:

    notlurking – Which “left leaning governments” do you have in mind?

  15. Fred says:

    “just look who owns the means of production in Venezuela. It is not the government. Its the folks behind Guaido.”
    Maduro, man of the people! I think most of those folks have been moving their money to Miami for a couple of years already. Was that “Coup” attempt real or similar to the one Erdogan managed in Turkey?

  16. Fred says:

    “….acts which would be called assault or bodily harm in other countries. ”
    So they are not real rapes! How wonderful. What were the numbers before the left in Sweden opened the borders?
    “…if someone says they were raped by a partner every day for a fortnight, officers will record 14 potential crimes. …”
    Just like police do in the USA. BTW that article is two years out of date.

  17. blue peacock says:

    Venezuela is in a Depression. Their economy has contracted by half in constant dollars since 2013. Couple that with hyperinflation as the government has printed money to keep itself afloat.

    “Venezuela’s economy has steadily deteriorated since the crash of oil prices in 2014 left it unable to sustain a socialist system of subsidies and price controls. In July, the IMF compared the hyperinflation in Venezuela to that of Germany in 1923 and Zimbabwe in the late 2000s.”

    There’s no comparison even when compared to other countries under sanctions like Iran or Russia. That is a convenient excuse. Argentina which has never been under sanctions periodically goes through the same busts. Out of control government spending coupled with economic repression and central bank money printing and then collapse followed by reset. The fact of the matter is that since Chavez the economy has been thoroughly mismanaged. Oil production has plummeted ever since Chavez nationalized the oil company. Prior to Chavez they had an oligarchy and to correct that concentration, he created another type of concentration – state ownership which always leads to cronyism and it shows.
    Having said that, Trump in the firm embrace of the neocons should not be interfering. In due time the people of Venezuela facing utter deprivation and economic collapse will get someone else who will come up with a different program. Getting failed magical thinkers like Abrams is stupid. But he got Bolton & Pompeo first which says it all. With the neocons epic failure is a feature not a bug.

  18. Fred says:

    Venezuela has so much oil that under Chavez’s leadership it couldn’t keep the state afloat on a sea of cash when oil was $100 a barrel. I wonder why.

  19. Bill H says:

    NBC News this evening went bannanas on Venezuela, presenting it as a very dicey situation and breathlessly waiting to see how things would look tomorrow, implying that Maduro would probably be overthrown by then. They presented a clip of Pompeo saying that Maduro’s airplane was parked at the airport and that he was preparing to flee to Cuba until the Russians told him not to. Hilarious.

  20. Mathias Alexander says:

    Perhaps the Venezuelans will vote Maduro out at the next election. I don’t think Random Guido would win though.

  21. Alves says:

    People that think that Venezuela is better off than Colombia need a reality check badly. If that were true, there would be no venezuelan refugees in Brazil or Colombia, and yet there are thousands of them living on the streets of both countries.
    That said, I do not see how Brazil would end up involved in any military coalition to intervene in Venezuela`s internal affairs, despite hearing rumors (hope?) of something like that (together with Colombia) on CNN and FoxNews. The first obstacle is our Constitution, which has a non-interventionism clause and that allows wars only for self-defense. The second obstacle are our armed forces, which do not seem to want it (probably because they know we lack the capabilities) and the third obstacle is our Congress, that would have to approve it (putting aside the legal issues I already mentioned). The same thing would go for giving basing rights to the USA.

  22. Gerard M. says:

    Socialism is a natural reaction to the inevitable excesses of capitalism (state-sponsored usury). The root of the problem is not socialism but liberalism. Socialism is the pus that forms when the body gets sick from capitalism.
    I am currently slogging my way through E. Michael Jones’ 1456-page “Barren Metal: A History of Capitalism as the Conflict between Labor and Usury”. It is mind-blowing, eye-opening, and life-altering and I recommend it to everyone. It’s a traditional Catholic take on economic history and Jones relies heavily on the work of German Jesuit, Heinrich Pesch, S.J. Jones has an abridged kindle-format of the book on Amazon titled, “Shylock’s Ewes and Rams: Economics and Morality”.

  23. notlurking says:

    And were do you think the drop in oil prices came from….out of thin air…there was manipulation there also…

  24. notlurking says:

    Jacobo Árbenz 1954 Guatemala….just one example…

  25. notlurking says:

    Corporate main stream media part and parcel of the game…

  26. Bill H says:

    “The first obstacle is our Constitution, which has a non-interventionism clause and that allows wars only for self-defense.”
    Please cite the article and clause which contains that prohibition. I just re-read the text of the constitution and cannot find it.

  27. turcopolier says:

    Bill H We are discussing the Brazilian constitution?

  28. turcopolier says:

    Arbenz is a valid example of your thesis, perhaps the best one. Give me other examples please.

  29. rho says:

    Seems like there are no true Scotsmen in the world – and also nowhere “real Communism”, because those who had called themselves Communists have always failed miserably when trying to establish their utopia. But that is certainly not the fault of their utopian ideas, right?

  30. Eric Newhill says:

    What B says does not reflect my understanding of the situation in Venezuela.
    Chavez attempted societal reform based on petro dollars. This worked for a while oil was expensive and it could have been the start of a good thing, but Chavez took a left turn. Rather than diversify the economy and invest in education, land reform and other infrastructure, Chavez centralized the economy. He decided to simply purchase what was needed (medicine, food, cars… everything) from other countries. Since these purchases were subsidized, it drove domestic producers out of business (they couldn’t compete). Then Chavez purchased the domestic producers and made them govt owned. he also borrowed from other countries to keep all of that going. Of course, he and his cronies pocketed vast wealth for themselves too.
    Then oil prices fell. The country owed money and it had lost the means of domestic production.
    So, naturally, massive inflation kicked in. Maduro inherited this mess and did exactly what was needed to make it worse, including corruption like allowing himself and his buddies to enjoy a decent exchange rate, but forcing the people to trade at incredibly disadvantageous rates.
    But if you want to believe the Uncle Sam – the dreaded Yankees – caused all of this unfair destruction of a socialist paradise, then knock yourself out. Your unreachable.

  31. still_learning says:

    If I may, another example might be the US backed military coup against Brazilian reformist president João Goulart.
    His attempt to manage an independent and unaligned foreign policy, nurture a broad center-left populist coalition under the banner of the Brazilian Labor Party, and a series of mild reforms similar to what Arbenz proposed in Guatemala were considered too radical by the USG.
    In December of 1962, Goulart and Kennedy spoke for three hours, with Kennedy objecting to the inclusion of Communists, nationalists, leftists and anti-Americans in Goulart’s government and putting an ultimatum to Goulart to make his government more in line with the USG’s concerns or face economic pressure.
    At the same time, JFK directed CIA to “do something” about Brazil and they responded by creating the climate for a coup, identifying and nurturing plotters, and organizing efforts to provide material and military support to the coup plotters.

  32. JamesT says:

    The worst part is that incompetent socialists like Maduro have their position strengthened by attacks from Washington. The same thing happened with Mugabe in my opinion – the more “the west” criticized him, the more his base supported him.

  33. JamesT says:

    Maduro is terrible and has to go – but it is worth noting that the rest of the region has serious problems too. I saw 13 year old girls prostituting themselves in the street in Medellin while policemen looked on and did nothing. I saw nothing like that in Caracas. Venezuela is not the only country in the region that has problems with poverty and injustice.
    Ben Norton tweeted this from Colombia on the human rights situation there:

  34. blue peacock says:

    You clearly don’t understand the crude market or commodities markets in general. I began my career on an oil trading desk. Manipulation only works at the margins when the size of the markets are large. Crude prices wax and wane primarily driven by supply & demand. All the peak oil cultists were wrong. US is producing more oil than it ever has.
    Russian economy didn’t collapse. Their economy didn’t go into a Depression. Oil is their primary product. You don’t want to accept that the Venezuelan economy was mismanaged under Chavez. Apparently for ideological reasons. Unfortunately that’s the reality. When crude prices dropped they could have produced more but they didn’t. The reality is that under Chavez & Maduro Venezuelan crude production has fallen despite having large reserves.

  35. turcopolier says:

    stilllearning I am unfamiliar with the case.

  36. Bill H says:

    Sorry, I misread the comment. Somehow my feeble mind did jumped right over the “I do not see how Brazil would end up…” Duh.
    I was about to comment on the “capability of the military” bit as well (i.e. “It certainly does have the capability.”), and am glad I didn’t, as it would have made me look even more stupid. I’m not expert on the US military, which restrained my comment, and am even less expert on the Brazilian military.

  37. turcopolier says:

    Hallabina Could have interfered with European politics but did not.

  38. Turcopolier says:

    Ah, sorry, Abrams is the worst of the lot.

  39. PacificaAdvocate says:

    The way you “understand” it, Eric, is just a recitation of US Dept of State talking points, points which have been repeatedly proven to ignore key events like Trump’s sanctions, for instance, or the Saudis’ 2014 dump into the oil markets, or basic facts like a key part of the Chavista plan was to diversify the economy–except they were interrupted by repeated US-sponsored coups and other meddling in their economy.

  40. PacificaAdvocate says:

    Yap, you’re catching on, there, Fred: Rape like you understand it is not the same thing as Rape as Sweden understands it.
    No, the article is not “out of date”–the laws haven’t changed. Legally, the situation remains the same and instances of rape have declined since then.
    Finally, the area where the vast majority of refugees have settled–Malmo–ranks #5 of the worst places for rape in Sweden. Or in other words: there are four places in Sweden where there are far more blonde-haired blue-eyed Swedes raping women than there are in Malmo. a 4:1 ratio of white-on-white rape.
    Wrap your haid around that, Fraid.

  41. Joanna says:

    Then Chavez purchased the domestic producers and made them govt owned.
    He did? I didn’t know. I would have assumed a socialist simply expropriates. If he purchased their property, how would financing a revolution help them to get back their possession? Legally, I mean. And I sure don’t know the first thing about Venezuelan private law.
    Chavez attempted societal reform based on petro dollars.
    you mean, he made US taxpayers like you pay the bill for his social security, to stop people from immigrating to the US? For instance?
    he also borrowed from other countries to keep all of that going. Of course, he and his cronies pocketed vast wealth for themselves too. … Then oil prices fell. The country owed money and it had lost the means of domestic production.
    What was worse, the lower oil price, thus less dollars, all the money “his cronies pocketed”, debts, or inflation?
    And who do you feel is correct on inflation theoretically von Hayek or Keynes?

  42. Joanna says:

    I guess, I would like to stay in the center between the two of you. And I have no time to proofread this, Fred. Other thing may matter too, details. I thought Malmö not Stockholm was declared the European rape capital. I may not be up to date though.
    Yes, no doubt, Sweden may have one of the most liberal gender legislations in Europe, as Pacifica writes. And it may matter. There is also something like „Kvinnofrid“, peace with woman, which means, somewhat comparable to the US, prostitution is forbidden since 1998. You cannot buy a women legally. Now surely humans being humans that did not abolish prostitution. But: Could a refugee afford it at all, if it were? …
    Concerning rape statistics, comparatively across let’s say the West, we are no doubt comparing apples and pears, so to speak, based on different reporting methods, based on different laws. Laws shaping reporting. But it surely makes great headlines without the given context.
    Shift: Let’ us move beyond Europe to an international perspective. Differences East and West North and South? How do Middle Eastern countries deal with rape? Is it a crime at all? Can you rape your wife there? …
    Strictly, personally, I seem to pay more attention if rape is connected with murder. It is often a simple he-saids-he-said matter, after all. No other relevant evidence, that cannot be faked, no witnesses. yes, we did have three significant cases over here. Three females, a young student and two girls killed by refugees/immigrants. I have no idea how many others were killed during the time that may matter to you. I am aware of two other cases, no immigrants involved in those. They had lesser attention.
    Now your perspective are the refugees, I guess: Could this have to do with Middle/”Near” Eastern country’s customs, legal systems? Does rape exist in the Koran? What about the way boys are brought up there? …
    Or is there a deeper anti-Western layers involved, at least by now, post GWOT? You destroy our way of living, and don’t even help us after? At least not the way, we expect you to help us?
    Oh, it is:
    As long as women adhere to the standard female status, clothes, and behavior? Only?
    Perspective shift: if the numbers of foreigners among unknown perpetrators are significant statistically; how significant or what percentage do they represent among their overall ethnic group in let’s say Sweden, Norway, Italy or Greece? Or you feel it only happens in Sweden? The Iraqi that killed a young student of medicine in Freiburg, Germany, had attempted to kill a woman in Greece before, but failed. Curiously enough, he wasn’t arrested.

  43. Cee says:

    I want our assess handed to us. I’ve had quite enough of the US trying to kick governments that we don’t like in the teeth. A plus would be to see Guaido, Abrams and Bolton dragged through the street by a tank.

  44. Tidewater says:

    Something tells me you have not paid attention to the more recent discoveries in the Hiss case from the VENONA program. On March 5, 1945, the overall chief of KGB operations in the US, Anatoly Gorsky, sent a cable to Moscow which is now known as VENONA 1822. It was intercepted and partially decrypted. It provides an important clue about ALES (‘Alles’). ALES was the code name for a high state department figure who had involved his family in espionage and had been in Washington DC working for the soviets since 1935. Now it was revealed that ALES had been at Yalta. After considerable study scholars both pro and anti Hiss now agree that ALES could only have been one of three persons: Stettinius; Wilder Foote; or Alger Hiss.
    Wilder Foote was not even in Washington until 1941. He had spent the years 1931-1941 in Vermont as owner publisher editor of three newspapers. Case as far as I am concerned, is closed.

  45. Eric Newhill says:

    I’m sure the way you understand just sounds like a recitation of Fidel Castro talking points.

  46. Mishko says:

    Shenanigans! I calls ’em.
    This is about weasel-wording and obfuscation.
    In Sweden the male immigrants are responsible for a big increase
    in crime statistics.
    This includes violent non-consensual sex.
    The Swedish administration refuses to make the numbers public
    and opts for the velvet glove treatment coupled with unhealthy denial.

  47. PacificaAdvocate says:

    You should read up on more recent scholarship, and not restrict yourself to the “Hiss was guilty! It’s proven!” crowd–there’s plenty of evidence that line of reasoning is specious and false.
    Here’s one take:

  48. PacificaAdvocate says:

    And then there’s the little fact that Time Magazine, in the 1950s, was essentially just a mouthpiece for the CIA; that Whittaker Chambers was (and remains) a proven liar on too many occasions to count; and that virtually all of the evidence used to indict Hiss have been demonstrated to be pure fabrications, either of Nixon’s own hyperbole or actual forgeries produced on a specially-rigged typewriter.
    There is ample evidence to show that the characterization of Hiss as a spy was entirely a fiction invented by the China Lobby in an effort to eliminate a political obstacle and advance the career of one of it’s own: Richard Nixon.

  49. Fred says:

    Sophistry as a fine art. Congratulations.

  50. Fred says:

    Bless your heart, you believe the important thing about legislation is the gender of its author. BTW Senator Harris supports legalization of prostitution .

  51. Fred says:

    Looks like the neocon track record of failure still stands at 100%.

  52. Ligurio says:

    Really? This is the “worst part” of US interventionism and not the roughly 40,000 unnecessary deaths already as a result of illegal US sanctions? Some things are more important than ideology. Persons, for example.

  53. daniel says:

    The bay of pigs was a trap. The CIA swallowed the line, the float and the embalmer.
    That was the opinion of an old French colonel, specialized in intelligence.
    The coup in Venezuela was also a trap.
    These screw-ups are starting to worry. A private company that is so wrong would not have much future.

  54. PacificaAdvocate says:

    >>>In Sweden the male immigrants are responsible for a big increase
    in crime statistics
    aThis is a demonstrable falsehood, and I have already provided the numbers that prove it.
    >>>The Swedish administration refuses to make the numbers public
    and opts for the velvet glove treatment coupled with unhealthy denial
    A myth invented by far-right-wing white supremacist worshippers of hyper-masculine amphetamine-fueled Death Metal, to distract from the fact that the vast majority of sexual assaults (US definition)/rapes (Swedish definition) are attributable to their rotten lot.

  55. Tidewater says:

    Well, first of all, it has been my experience in capital murder cases that go on for a long time, that you will sometimes feel the ground shifting and the facts of the case changing a little, as the appellate process adjusts to new possibilities and counter arguments. Lowenthal, Hiss’s longtime lawyer, changed his opinion about the Venona intercepts, didn’t he? They could not argue that there was a translation problem after the original Russian one was finally released. One problem in a murder appeals process is finding someone to point the finger at as an alternative to you. In the Roger Coleman case this led to a big settlement by a Washington law firm. I can’t help noticing, after a quick reading, that Lowenthal doesn’t even mention Wilder Foote as of 2000. Wilder Foote’s name is dragged in seven years later.
    If there had only been a Dodge or Studebaker truck factory in Vermont in 1932 that might have made a difference to my thinking. Have you ever been to Vermont? You are so far back of beyond up there that the stop signs up near Jay’s Peak are also in French. Arrete! I have never seen that anywhere in the US but up there. You are practically in Quebec. Do you think the GRU was interested in covered bridges?
    If the GRU had recruited Wilder Foote at Harvard or shortly thereafter during his year of studying abroad, don’t you think they would have ordered him to go to Washington by 1933 or so. Foote, at thirty-six was actually given an honorary degree by Middlebury College. He was that good. His father was a famous Unitarian theologian. He could easily have gotten a job in the war department or somewhere more to the GRU’s suiting. As was they were grousing about ALES’ diplomatic poop, which obviously bored them.
    I am more interested in Wilder Foote because of his connection to Dag Hammarskjold. All this has finally led me to buy ‘Markings’. And by the way, you want conspiracy? I wonder what Foote thought of his friend’s death, how it happened. Foote’s story takes us back to the Cold war, back to Patrice Lumumba, back to the mercenaries, the Congo, the uranium mines, the NASA signals collected by Kagnew Station –possibly even from the pilots of the UN plane if they were being fired on –right back into ‘Africa Addio’ if you know that strange film. Anyway, fair enough, the case against Foote such as it is, is here for those interested. Surely you notice that his accusers seem a little bit conflicted, noting, for example how he does seem to be kind of a standup guy. I would love to know who got his papers. Cheers!

  56. PacificaAdvocate says:

    Unlike you, Eric, I deal in facts–not ideological-based fantasies.

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