Johnson wrote up an article based on this interview that was picked up by the intelligence-driven North American News Alliance (see Part One) and printed on November 26, 1959 in the Washington Evening Star. Johnson pitched Oswald as a "nice-looking six-footer" and a "serious, soft-spoken Southern boy" with some different ideas. She suppressed any hint of Oswald's threat to expose military secrets to the Soviet Union. When interviewer John Newman asked her why she had not written about Oswald's threat, Johnson responded: "I know, that it is terrible...that is so unprofessional."
What the devil happened to Mr. Webster?
Someone at the Warren Commission was shaken by Johnson's reference to Robert E. Webster in the Evening Star article, and they did not want his story to be compared with Oswald's. The solution was to suppress the Evening Star article as an exhibit. Instead, the Commission used Johnson's nearly-identical original manuscript with Robert E. Webster's first name deleted but not his last name - the entire name missing would be too obvious. This deletion had nothing to do with "national security". The only conceivable reason was to try to insulate Webster from future investigation.
This stratagem was largely successful. Webster was not in the body of the Warren Report, and his full identity was erased from the exhibits. No government agency ever interviewed the now-deceased Webster, or compared the photos of Webster and Oswald.
Oswald/Webster by unknown
To my knowledge, the CIA-linked Robert Webster was not part of the dialogue of the assassination until the spadework done by the HSCA fifteen years later. Here is the Evening Star article discussing Webster - here is the manuscript with his first name whited out. The whited-out version was published by the Warren Commission, hiding Webster's identity from the public.
What was the reaction from the State Department and other US agencies about Oswald's act of treason? No statements of outrage, or even significant concern. Close to total silence...but not, as we will see, from the counterintelligence divisions of the CIA and the FBI.
Next week, in Part 3: Counterintelligence goes molehunting with Oswald's file
A tip of the hat goes to Professor John Newman. Some of the analysis here comes from his book Oswald and the CIA, recommended for anyone who wants to go deeper into the issues in this chapter. Many thanks also to researchers Greg Parker and Bill Kelly for sharing their work on Edward Keenan, REDSKIN and REDCAP. As this story progresses, I will acknowledge other researchers and authors as much as possible. Much credit to the efforts of everyone who has moved this case forward with well-vetted evidence.
This series of articles needs vetting - it's still a work in progress. Suggestions and criticism regarding the state of the documentary evidence and the best approach for a JFK Preservation of Evidence Act are appreciated.
Oswald was an aviation electronics operator: Warren Commission Document 1114, Navy message 22257, From: CNO To: ALUSNA, Moscow, 11/4/59.
Oswald once tracked a U-2 flying over China and showed it to his commanding officer: Interview with James Donovan by John Newman, 7/19/94, in Newman's Oswald and the CIA, p. 32.
While Oswald was in Asia: Tom Mangold, Cold Warrior, p. 250; Newman, p. 87.
In April 1958, Popov heard a drunken colonel brag, and concluded that the leak came from within the project itself: Mark Riebling, Wedge (Touchstone, 1994), p. 155, quoted in Newman, p. 87.
While in Berlin, Popov passed this U-2 leak...: Newman, pp. 87-88.
In September, 1959, Oswald received a dependency discharge...: McVickar's Memorandum to the Files, 11/17/59, CE 911, Volume 18, p. 106. www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?docId=1135&relPageId=120
After a three day visit with his mother...: See Mary Ferrell Chronologies, Volume 2 (a) - 1959, pp. 19-20. www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?docId=40396&relPageId=19
Supposedly, he was off to attend college for the first time at the Albert Schweitzer College in Zurich, Switzerland. Percival Brundage, the college president, was Eisenhower's budget director...: George Michael Evica, A Certain Arrogance (Xlibris, 2006), pp. 216-226 (on background of Brundage, the budget, and SAT); Victor Marchetti, The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence (Knopf, 1974), pp. re ownership of SAT, see Flight/Global Archive, www.flightglobal.com/pdfarchive/view/1975/1975%20-%200565.html
The CIA admits owning SAT until 1973. See
Washington Post, 10/30/86