Showing posts with label Sturgis. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Sturgis. Show all posts

Monday, 20 July 2015

The Fish is Red by Hinckle & Turner

"From 1969 until 1984 two pallets of Farewell America languished in Montréal, in an unheated, bonded, government warehouse. Freezing cold winters and blistering hot summers—all fifteen of them. 

During this time the book became very tough to find and the price began to climb, eventually hitting more then $100.00—if you could find a copy. The scuttlebutt was that the F.B.I. had bought up all remaining copies and had them destroyed. This type of tactic had worked with two of William Turner’s books, The Fish is Red and The Assasssination of Robert F. Kennedy which Random House had stopping shipping to bookstores a few months after it was published, probably at the behest of the F.B.I. Of the 20,000 copies it printed, Random House probably burned three-quarters of them! Not good for the bottom line, but very good for the government relations."

If money talks, then Howard Hughes, from his Desert Inn penthouse, was one of the world's greatest ventriloquists. He once sent Bob Maheu to Lyndon Johnson's ranch to offer $1 million to call off nuclear testing in the Nevada desert, which Hughes felt was scaring off the casino trade and irradiating his drinking water. Maheu, unable to bring himself to proffer such a bribe to the President of the United States, asked if there was anything Hughes, a great admirer, might do. Johnson suggested  donation to the LBJ Library, noting that there was a $25,000 limit.

When Maheu reported back to Hughes, the billionaire scoffed "Hell, I couldn't control the son of a bitch with $25,000."

Reference : James Phelan, Howard Hughes : The Hidden Years (New York Random House, 1976), p75

The bubbling ITT scandal, the Chilean skulduggery, the Castro assassination plots, Howard Hughes - these were some of the suspected genies somewhere in a bottle at Democratic headquarters that had to stay corked.

The story of Watergate is told and retold like Rashamon, and each time the shades of truth change with the seasons. On June 16 Sturgis, Barkwe, Martínez, and Gonzalez flew to Washington for another crack at the DNC offices in the Watergate complex. The first try in early May had been unsuccessful; over The Memorial Day weekend, they managed to get in and photograph documents while McCord installed bug transmitters. But McCord had set the power level so low to avoid detection that the transmissions were only marginally intelligible.

No one had the feeling they were going to the well once too often, and if by some chance they were caught, they had been told not to worry; "fail-safe" arrangements had been made to quietly retrieve them. When they got off the plane at National Airport, Sturgis bumped into Jack Anderson, to whom he had been feeding information for years, but said that he happened to be in town on "private business". When they entered the lobby of the Howard Johnson motel across from the Watergate, Sturgis spotted his movie idol Burt Lancaster and impulsively asked for his autograph.

Reference : Author's interview with Frank Sturgis

William Turner was born in Buffalo, New York, in 1927. At seventeen he enlisted in the United States Navy. During the Second World War he served on board an LST in the Pacific.

After the war Turner enrolled at Canisius College, a Jesuit school, and in 1949 obtained a degree in chemistry. Turner also played semi-professional baseball and ice hockey.

Turner joined the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in 1951. He worked for the FBI for ten years but grew increasingly concerned with the way J. Edgar Hoover ran the organization. Turner became convinced that Hoover was placing too much emphasis on the dangers of the American Communist Party. Instead, he felt he should be using more resources to tackle organized crime. In 1961 Turner was dismissed from the FBI. He hired Edward Bennett Williams and sued the FBI but lost. However he did manage to get anti-Hoover testimony by other agents into the record.

Turner became a journalist. In 1963 he investigated the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and concluded that he was the victim of a conspiracy. Later he worked with Jim Garrison, the district attorney of New Orleans. Turner and Garrison argued that a group of right-wing activists, including Guy Bannister, David Ferrie, Carlos Bringuier and Clay Shaw were involved in a conspiracy with the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) to kill Kennedy. Turner and Garrison claimed this was in retaliation for his attempts to obtain a peace settlement in both Cuba and Vietnam.

Turner argued that the Kennedy assassination was a paramilitary operation, with riflemen firing from at least three angles. Stephen Rivele agreed with this viewpoint and in the television documentary, The Men Who Killed Kennedy, named Lucien Sarti as being the gunman on the grassy knoll.

Turner later became senior editor of the magazine Ramparts. Under the editorship of Warren Hinckle, the magazine became the voice of the American New Left. It was also highly critical of the Warren Commission. In a series of articles he revealed abuses perpetrated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Central Intelligence Agency. He also explored the assassinations of John F. Kennedy , Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King.

Books by Turner include Hoover's FBI: The Men and the Myth (1970), Power on the Right (1973), The Assassination of Robert F. Kennedy (1978), The Fish Is Red: The Story of the Secret War Against Castro (1981), Deadly Secrets (1992) (with Warren Hinckle), his autobiography, Rearview Mirror: Looking Back at the FBI, the CIA and Other Tails (2001). In his book he published details of wiretapping and bugging abuses by the FBI, its secret campaign against left-wing groups such as Cesar Chavez's United Farm Workers Union and the stealth war against Cuba.

Turner also argues that John F. Kennedy was assassinated because he was planning to withdraw American forces from Vietnam. He also argued that Robert Kennedy was murdered because if he had been elected president he would have ordered a full investigation into his brother's death.

In 2004 Turner published Mission Not Accomplished: How Bush Lost the War on Terrorism (2004).