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The JFK Case: The Twelve Who Built the Oswald Legend (Part 10: Nightmare in Mexico City)

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Headlined to H4 7/26/13

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The initial caller on the line identified herself as the Cuban consul's secretary, a young Mexican woman named Sylvia Duran.   She told the Soviets that she was with a man had a question.   She then put a man on the phone, and insisted in speaking in what was described as "broken Russian".   It was reported that two individuals who heard the tapes reported that the man was also speaking "broken English".   The linguistically challenged man told the Soviet officer that he had a contact number that he wanted to pass on to the Soviets.   The Soviet officer told the man to come on over.  

Three days later, the man called again, inquiring about the status of his visa that had been the purpose of his call on Saturday the 28th.   He said his name was Lee Oswald.

The CIA's translators reported that they received tapes of the Oswald phone calls right after they were made.   After JFK was killed, these translators were left strictly alone.

The CIA's translators, the husband-and-wife team of Boris and Anna Tarasoff, listened to these tapes. Boris focused on Russian voices; Anna focused on English and Spanish voices. Boris reported that both of these tapes were rushed over to them right after the phone calls were made.

Boris' testimony is consistent with the general procedure, which was to get tapes from the Soviet compound to the translator and pick them up all on the same day.    Boris was very clear that the voices on the September 28 tape and the October 1 tape were the same man.   Both the wiretap monitors and Tarasoff were trained to memorize the voices of the individuals who worked at the embassy compounds. When Tarasoff told Bill Bright that these tapes were of the same man who identified himself as Oswald, Bright got very excited.

On November 23, the day after JFK was killed, Goodpasture reported to HQ that Boris Tarasoff (also known as "Feinglass") was the man who had translated and matched up these calls.   No one asked Boris or Anna any questions about these phone calls for thirteen years after the assassination -- not until the assassination probe was reopened. The Tarasoffs held invaluable information about Oswald and his contacts.    Why in the world wouldn't the officials want to interview the Tarasoffs?  

 
Ann Goodpasture by John Simkin, Education Forum

The short answer is that certain high officials did not want the Tarasoffs interviewed.   Ann Goodpasture is still alive, and should be interviewed and asked why.

The long answer starts with an assumption driven by the facts.   Goodpasture and the other lead officers in Mexico City knew that there was a problem with the tapes that portrayed the voices of Duran, Oswald, and an unknown Soviet on September 28, as well as the tape of Oswald on October 1.   One enterprising CIA officer even made a chart of the supposed Oswald visits and the times that the CIA cameras trained on the embassies were in operation, trying to figure it all out.   He also created a very short and effective index of the alleged Oswald visits and phone calls.

The problems flowed from a few obvious questions.  

How did Oswald get into the Cuban consulate on Saturday the 28th, when the consulate was generally closed?   

How did Oswald convince Duran to call the Soviet consulate and put him on the line?  

Especially after the Soviet and Cuban officials had compared notes on Oswald on the 27th and had concluded that he had lied to both of them in his attempts to obtain an instant visa?  

Why did Oswald try to speak in "broken Russian"?   And why would a native-born American like Oswald speak in "broken English", according to two of the individuals who heard the tapes?

Another problem was the voice of Duran on the tape.   Duran had been working at the consulate all summer long.   Duran was identified by name in the station's photo logs back in 1962 and as recently as September 30, 1963.   The monitors would have known her voice in late September. 

A Cuban undercover agent, Luis Alberu, also known as LITAMIL-9, worked inside the Cuban embassy.   Alberu would regularly meet CIA officer Robert Shaw in his car and talk with him about the people who were working at and visiting the Cuban embassy.   Later, Robert Shaw said, I kept an eye on Duran. He knew who she was.   Alberu would look at the CIA's photos of visitors to the Cuban compound and identify who they were.   If it wasn't Duran's voice on the tape, the wiretap monitors would have known it.   Goodpasture would have known it.   What would a reasonable CIA officer do in this situation?

There is no record of anyone identifying Duran's voice on the September 28 tape.   Until 1976, no one ever asked either of the Tarasoffs about this call from Duran and Oswald.  

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Bill Simpich is a civil rights attorney and an antiwar activist in the San Francisco Bay Area.
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Content in Series: "The JFK Case: The Twelve Who Built the Oswald Legend"

Article The JFK Case: The Twelve Who Built the Oswald Legend (Part 10: Nightmare in Mexico City)  (View Article Stats) 07/26/2013
Article THE JFK CASE: THE TWELVE WHO BUILT THE OSWALD LEGEND (Part 9 - Oswald Takes Center Stage As An Intelligence Asset)  (View Article Stats) 08/30/2012
Article THE JFK CASE: THE TWELVE WHO BUILT THE OSWALD LEGEND (Part 8: The CIA-Army Intelligence Mambo)  (View Article Stats) 06/04/2012
Article THE JFK CASE: THE TWELVE WHO BUILT THE OSWALD LEGEND (Part 7: The hand-off from De Mohrenschildt to the Paines)  (View Article Stats) 06/03/2012
Article THE JFK CASE: The Twelve Who Built The Oswald Legend (Part 6: White Russians Keep An Eye On Oswald In Dallas)  (View Article Stats) 11/22/2011
Article THE JFK CASE: THE TWELVE WHO BUILT THE OSWALD LEGEND (Part 5: The Double Dangle)  (View Article Stats) 12/27/2010
Article THE JFK CASE: THE TWELVE WHO BUILT THE OSWALD LEGEND (Part 3: Counterintelligence goes molehunting with Oswald's file)  (View Article Stats) 12/06/2010
Article THE JFK CASE: THE TWELVE WHO BUILT THE OSWALD LEGEND (Part 4: When the U-2 Goes Down, Oswald is Ready to Return)  (View Article Stats) 11/16/2010
Article THE JFK CASE: THE TWELVE THAT BUILT THE OSWALD LEGEND (Part 2: An Instant Visa Gets The Marine Into Moscow)  (View Article Stats) 09/02/2010
Article THE JFK CASE: THE TWELVE WHO BUILT THE OSWALD LEGEND (Part One: Mother, Meyer, and the Spotters)  (View Article Stats) 08/22/2010
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View Series: The JFK Case: The Twelve Who Built the Oswald Legend
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There was a "Mystery Man" photo that the Mexico Ci... by Bill Simpich on Friday, Jul 26, 2013 at 3:18:39 PM
read and digest, but it's evident you did some ser... by Daniel Geery on Saturday, Jul 27, 2013 at 2:19:27 PM