«NOVEMBER 22, 1963 (Friday) 12:00 AM (Nov. 22, 1963) Nine Secret Service agents drinking at Pat Kirkwood’s bar the “Cellar Door” in Fort Worth, ...»
January 5, 1975 President Ford creates the Rockefeller Commission to investigate the illegal domestic intelligence activities of the CIA, appointing Vice President Nelson Rockefeller as Chairman and former Warren commission assistant counsel David Belin as Director. Tom Wicker of the N.Y. Times writes: “The ‘blue ribbon ‘commission appointed by President Ford to protect the public against domestic spying by the CIA looks suspiciously like a goat sent to guard a cabbage patch. Having the CIA investigated by such a group is like having the Mafia audited by its own accountants.” Ford makes a serious fumble when he tells a group of newspaper editors that he needs people on the commission who can be trusted lest they stumble upon evidence of assassinations. If the commission is investigating illegal DOMESTIC CIA activities, what assassinations could Ford possibly be referring to? Former Secretary of Defense, Robert McNamara, will testify to the Commission that his work on the Vietnam War was so consuming that he has “lost virtually all memory of what took place in the Kennedy administration.” When pressed on this issue, McNamara says, “I have no notes - I did not take any notes of any meeting I attended with rare exception, and I have no other basis for refreshing my memory, and my memory of those years is very bad.” McGeorge Bundy’s testimony is also full of “I can’t recall” and “I don’t remember” responses.
One year from now, Robert McNamara will testify before a Congressional committee saying he knew the plots against Fidel Castro had not originated with the CIA, but can’t say why or how he knew it.
In 1988, Richard Helms will say: “A lot of people probably lied about what had happened in the effort to get rid of Castro....
There are two things you have to understand: Kennedy wanted to get rid of Castro, and the agency was not about to undertake anything like that on its own.” Also this month, the Senate Select Committee to Study Governmental Operations with Respect to Intelligence comes into existence. Chaired by Senator Frank Church, Democrat of Idaho, it becomes known as the “Church Commission.” Senator Robert Morgan, Democrat of North Carolina and a member of this Committee, will eventually state: “There is no doubt in my mind that John Fitzgerald Kennedy was assassinated by Fidel Castro, or someone under his influence, in retaliation for our efforts to assassinate him.” Timothy Crouse, of the Village Voice, writes: “A subtle pattern begins to emerge. One suspects that the Agency may be trying to peddle certain crimes of its own choice, trying to guide the Church Committee toward certain items and away from.... God knows what.” The CIA’s retired Western Hemisphere Chief J. C. King believes he can put to rest, once and for all, the question of White House authorization. King has an office at CIA headquarters which has been provided for him since his retirement. In this office is a safe in which King has kept a document showing that RFK had authorized the plots against Castro. King goes to retrieve the document with the intention of providing it to The Church Committee. He finds that the document is missing.
February 3, 1975 Aristotle Onassis’s heart condition becomes worse when he gets another bout of the flu. He has learned that he is suffering from myasthenia gravis, a progressive muscular disease.
February 6. 1975 Jackie Onassis, Christina Onassis, Ari’s sister Artemis and a team of doctors accompany Aristotle Onassis to Paris, where he refuses to go directly into the hospital. Instead, he proceeds to his apartment on Avenue Foch where he stays for three days. His condition quickly deteriorates and he has an operation to remove his gallbladder.
February 12, 1975 Aristotle Onassis is put on a respirator and is given massive infusions of antibiotics.
February 16, 1975 About a week after photographs of the three “tramps” arrested in Dallas on the day of the assassinan tion are published in many newspapers, the photographer Jack Beers dies of a “heart attack.” February 21, 1975 (Miami, Fla.) Three days after announcing he intends to return to Cuba to challenge Castro to an n election, liberal leader Luciano Nieves is gunned down in a hospital parking lot after visiting his sick son.
February 28, 1975 First public revelation that CIA has plotted to assassinate foreign leaders.
March 6, 1975 The Robert Groden optically enhanced version of the Zapruder film is shown on ABC’s “Goodnight America,” hosted by Geraldo Rivera. This is the first public airing of the film and it has a major impact on the nation. A group of students from the University of Virginia, including Andy Purdy and Mike Holm, see the program on television. They subsequently get in touch with the Virginia Congressional Delegation, and at 9:15 A.M., April 15, 1975, the Grodens show the film and other evidence at the Capitol to the Virginia Congressional Delegation. This will be the first time any Congressional group has ever seen the Zapruder film, or any of the other assassination film footage or slides.
March 12, 1975 In Paris, doctors tell Jackie Onassis that Aristotle Onassis is in no immediate danger of dying and that she can fly to New York for a few days to see her children.
March 15, 1975 Aristotle Onassis dies. After his funeral, and for the remainder of this year, Jackie is mostly in America with n her children and friends.
March 23, 1975 John O’Hare dies of a heart attack. According to Cuban exile sources, O’Hare was one of the most n dangerous men alive. It is he who is credited with several assassinations, including Manuel Rodriguez Quesada and Gilberto Rodriguez Hernandez. O’Hare is described as a “CIA mercenary and assassin,” by Robert Morrow in First Hand Knowledge.
April, 1975 The Rockefeller Commission examines JFK X-rays and autopsy photographs.
April 7, 1975 McGeorge Bundy, in his first day of Rockefeller Commission testimony, categorically denies any knowledge of “an actual decision” to assassinate a foreign leader. He also testifies that he has “no recollection” of an executive action program.
Bundy will have a secret meeting with David W. Belin, the executive director of the Rockefeller Commission, tomorrow in order to make some private additions to the record. Bundy must be aware that he has committed perjury and now tries to backtrack. Belin is angered by Bundy’s testimony before the Commission.
April 9, 1975 Time-LIFE sells the Zapruder film to the family for $1; the media is still reporting that Zapruder got only $25,000 for the film; his heirs have complained of dozens of copyright violations; the heirs would not let Time Inc. give the original film to the National Archives, although copies will go there; the heirs’ lawyer said the family would “create a liberal policy of making the film available to scholars or the public in a manner consistent with their copyright interest.” (Detroit Free Press) Time Inc. assigned the film’s copyright to the Zapruder family, for $1. It donated a first generation copy, a second generation copy, and a set of transparencies to the National Archives the same day. It is restricted to viewing on the premises. The original film is stored as a courtesy by the National Archives, without public access to it. An archivist notes that the LIFE first generation copy was of poor quality. The archives now have an FBI second-generation print, the original, one first generation and one second-generation copy from LIFE. The whereabouts of the two Secret Service first generation copies are unknown.
April 14, 1975 Clyde Tolson, J. Edgar Hoover’s lifelong companion, dies today. He is seventy-four years old.
n April 15, 1975 Robert Groden shows the Zapruder film and other evidence at the Capitol to the Virginia Congressional Delegation. This is the first time any Congressional group has ever seen the film, or any of the other assassination film footage or slides.
Two days from now, Representative Thomas Downing will introduce a resolution to reopen the case. This resolution is then coupled with that of Congressman Gonzales and leads to the eventual creation of the Committee.
May 15, 1975 Deputy sheriff Roger Craig dies in Dallas. He is 39 years old. On Nov. 22, 1963, he testified that n he saw a man (Oswald) run down from the Depository and get into a Rambler station wagon. Craig is killed by a rifle bullet; his death is listed as suicide.
June -- 1975 During this month, some two months before his death, mobster crony and CIA asset, John Martino, tells News Day reporter, John Cummings, that he himself “played a role” in the JFK assassination. “Two guns, two people [were] involved,” Martino reportedly says -- adding that they were anti-Castro Cubans.
June 15, 1975 In a copyrighted story by Bob Wiedrick, the Chicago Tribune alleges that a CIA liaison man has informed Congressional leaders investigating the Agency that “(Kennedy) Presidential aides Kenneth O’Donnell and David Powers are reported to have told investigators soon after the Kennedy assassination that they thought they had observed what might have been shots coming from a location other than the Texas School Depository. But sometime before O’Donnell and Powers submitted their report to the Warren commission by deposition and affidavit either J. Edgar Hoover or his top aides prevailed on the men not to disclose their suspicions to the Commission.” June 19, 1975 Sam Giancana is murdered -- shot six times pointblank in his head - in the basement of his Chicago n home. (1147 South Wenonah Avenue in Oak Park, Illinois) He is Chicago Mafia boss reputed to have participated in a failed CIA plot to assassinate Fidel Castro. He is 65. He is slated to tell about CIA-mob death plots to the Senate committee. His executioner enters the basement through heavy steel doors that have been opened by Giancana - who is then shot with a.22 revolver pressed against the base of his skull at the back of his head for the first shot. He is then shot in the mouth with five more bullets under the chin into his brain. The.22 revolver is traced by the FBI to the Miami, Florida, territory of Santos Trafficante. (One suspect for the killing is Johnny Roselli.) Sam’s brother, Chuck, writes that one week prior to Giancana’s murder, Sam Giancana orders the execution of Jimmy Hoffa.
At 11 p.m. on the top floor of the house are Sam’s caretaker, Joe DiPersio, and his wife. Joe has seen three cars out front. It is suggested that Giancana is being watched by the CIA, the FBI and the Oak Park Police. Normally, when a group in one car goes on a food break, the other two groups continue their silent vigil. At this point, however, all three cars pull off and drive away together.
Giancana goes down to the basement to cook a late night snack - sausages and escarole. His executioner shoots Giancana in the back of the neck with a.22 pistol, aiming in an upward direction to the left. Giancana dies almost instantly. The executioner nudges Giancana over onto his back and puts another bullet into the front of his neck; a third entering the lower lip; a fourth, fifth, sixth, and seventh into the lower jaw and lower face. At 11:52, Joe DiPersio goes downstairs to check on Giancana and finds him dead. An ambulance arrives, picks up the body, and reaches the Oak Park Hospital emergency room at 1:40 a.m. on June 20, 1975. At 1:45 a.m., Sam Giancana is pronounced dead. The three cars - the CIA, FBI and Oak Park Police - return to the house and resume their silent watch. JFK & Sam The Chicago Tribune this morning has carried the headline REPORT CIA SCHEME TO POISON CASTRO. The short article states, “The assassination plot...was directed by Sam Giancana and John Rosselli, two alleged crime syndicate figures, recruited by the CIA as middlemen for the job. Sam Giancana was installed in a suite at the Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami.” Church Committee staffers arrive in Chicago to accompany Sam Giancana to Washington, DC in order to testify at a hearing.
July 16, 1975 Colonel L. Fletcher Prouty testifies before the Church Committee. In his testimony, Prouty states that Richard Helms had definite knowledge of and participated in the assassination program against Fidel Castro.
July 19, 1975 Frank Church, in a press conference today, says that the CIA has acted like a “rogue elephant.” Committee member, Senator Barry Goldwater of Arizona, says that there is friction on the Church Committee between “those who want to protect the Kennedys and those who want to tell the truth.” Years from now, Goldwater will also say: “We spent nine of the ten months trying to get Kennedy’s name out of it.” July 29, 1975 Jackie Onassis celebrates her 46th birthday. During a visit earlier this month to Hyannisport, she sadly tells Rose Kennedy that she can no longer remember JFK’s voice and can’t bear to look at pictures of him. “I have always lived through men,” she tells a friend. “Now I realize I can’t do that anymore.” July 30, 1975 Jimmy Hoffa is scheduled to meet Anthony “Tony Pro” Provenzano, a New Jersey Teamster official n and reputed member of the crime syndicate. Hoffa is never seen again.
August 3, 1975 John Martino dies at the age of sixty-four. Martino admitted being part of the JFK assassination n
- supplying equipment and delivering money. He was once arrested in Cuba. He was also very close to William Pawley.
September 5, 1975 As President Ford nears the state Capitol in Sacramento a woman points a pistol at him. She is identified as Lynette Alice “Squeaky” Fromme, 26, a follower of Charles Manson. Not long before Ford’s visit, Squeaky Fromme has gone to the offices of the Sacramento Bee and asked them to print a letter from Manson saying that if Gerald Ford continued to violate the law, there would be a massacre. The newspaper gave it to the police, who shared it with the Secret Service. Nothing happened. The Secret Service has not interviewed Fromme. When Ford comes to town, she puts on a flaming red robe and comes up to within two feet of Ford and shoots.
September 8, 1975 Senator Schweiker introduces a Senate resolution calling for a reopening of the JFK assassination case.
September 15, 1975 George T. Kalaris, who has replaced James J. Angleton as Chief of Counterintelligence/CIA, writes a memo to the executive assistant to the deputy of Operations (DDO) of the CIA, describing the contents of LHO’s 201 file.