Nixon and Ford -- The Pardon and the Tapes
As the Power Control Group grew larger and the number of murders increased through the years, it became more and more difficult to keep the veil of secrecy surrounding the takeover intact. As Nixon's instability increased, the danger of revealing the secret superstructure to the American people increased.
Watergate and Nixon's resignation from office nearly ruined everything for the Power Control Group. A splinter faction in the CIA began showing strength and all of the dirt might have been leaked to the press and to the people. Nixon himself had pulled the most dangerous boner in the history of the PCG. He installed a secret tape recording system that recorded a number of conversations about the PCG's murders, assassinations and dirty tricks. Even worse, Nixon did not destroy the tapes before the Congress found out about them and went after them. As soon as it became obvious that Nixon would be forced to resign, the PCG had to use a desperation strategy.
Gerald R. Ford pardoned Richard M. Nixon on September 8, 1974: such was the PCG's strategy. Many skeptical U.S. citizens nodded their heads knowingly and assumed Nixon had made his "deal" with Ford when he nominated him for the vice presidency. Evans and Novak  assumed that Julie Nixon Eisenhower talked Ford into the pardon on grounds that Nixon's health was poor. The Ford's fears for Nixon's health didn't seem to convince very many news media people who saw a rosy-cheeked, apparently robust ex-president in San Clemente.
The pardon seemed to most Americans and news editors a gross error in judgment and a miscarriage of justice. But once again the United States was fooled. This time, the PCG, Nixon and Ford managed to pull the wool over the eyes of the public and to narrowly escape revealing what can be called "the entire rotten crust at the top of American power." Any reasonable hypothesis about what actually happened, based on the evidence at hand, had not been even remotely suggested by either Congress or the media by 1976.
Any explanation of the situation leading to the pardon begins with the relationship between Gerald Ford and Richard Nixon. It goes back to 1960, the year Mr. Nixon planned the overthrow of Castro's Cuba. As earlier chapters have made clear, the U2 incident and the Bay of Pigs was the beginning.
In 1960, Nixon and the White House action officer worked on the plans for what was later called the Bay of Pigs invasion. Prior to that time the PCG and Nixon had accumulated plenty of reasons to want Castro overthrown. The anti-Communist attitude was the superficial reason. Beneath it were Nixon's connections with the Mafia and his friendships and financial holdings that were greatly damaged when Castro closed the casinos run by the mob in Havana. When Nixon and Kennedy debated about the Cuban situation in the 1960 campaign, Nixon purposefully lied to the American people about U.S. plans for an invasion. When he narrowly lost to Kennedy, it created a deep wound, and he and the PCG spent much of the next three years planning revenge.
Nixon became a tool of a number of Cubans and Americans, both inside the CIA and outside, who agreed with him that casting out Castro was highly desirable. One of these men was E. Howard Hunt. Another was Bernard Barker. A third was Carlos Prio Socarras. Richard Bissell, Richard Helms and Allen Dulles were the three higher level men in the PCG.
These Nixon cronies and financial partners became involved with the PCG. They murdered John Kennedy. Whether Nixon was directly involved in the PCG's planning for the assassination is still open to question, although one researcher believes that he was. There certainly is substantial evidence that Nixon was out to at least politically sink Kennedy and Johnson, and aimed to do so in Dallas immediately before Kennedy was killed. (See section on evidence).
Whether Nixon was directly involved in planning the assassination of President John F. Kennedy does not have to be settled here. What is important is that Nixon was directly involved in covering up the truth about who did kill Kennedy. Evidence from the Nixon-Haldeman tapes of June 1972 indicated that Nixon knew the truth about the assassination when he suggested Gerald Ford be part of the Warren Commission.
A close personal friendship had developed between Ford and Nixon during their days together in the Congress, when both were strong, ultra-conservative, "red, white and blue", anti-Communist, "religious" members who thought and talked alike.
When Nixon realized that John Kennedy had been killed almost under his nose in Dallas by some of his Bay of Pigs friends, the PCG convinced him he had to do everything in his power to cover it up and to bide his time until his powerful military and intelligence friends could place him in the White House. It took one more murder by the PCG (Robert Kennedy) to get him there, and still another attempted murder to keep him there (George Wallace).
Control over the investigations of these murders was essential for Nixon and the PCG. In order to guide a presidential commission away from the truth, the closed small circle of people in the PCG who knew what had happened to John Kennedy had to be enlarged. Allen Dulles was no problem. He knew the cause was an intelligence/military one from the day it happened. Earl Warren was a different matter. He had to be fooled and later talked into remaining silent "for the good of the country."
A ringleader inside the Warren Commission was crucial. It had to be someone the PCG and Nixon could trust, one who had an honest and trustworthy appearance. Nixon called on Gerry Ford, and he convinced LBJ that Ford should be on the Commission.
Nixon told Ford at some point prior to January, 1964 who killed JFK and why. He convinced Ford that every effort should be made to make sure Oswald was found to be the lone assassin. Ford did an excellent job. He not only steered the Commission away from the facts whenever a key witness was interviewed or an embarrassing situation developed, but he also nailed Oswald's coffin shut personally by publishing his own book on Oswald. This, coming from the chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, served to firmly plant in the American mind the idea that there was no conspiracy, that Oswald was the lone assassin, and that the Warren Commission had done a good job.
From the day Ford's book was published, Nixon and Ford became totally beholden to each other. They also both became totally beholden to the members of the PCG who were at or near the top of things and who were part of the small knowledgeable circle. Other members of the PCG's inner circle included J. Edgar Hoover and Richard Helms.
No one could be permitted by the PCG to come into power in the White House, the CIA, the Justice Department or the FBI unless they were part of the PCG and willing to keep quiet and help suppress the truth about the JFK assassination. The PCG's membership widened, of necessity, when Robert Kennedy was killed and Nixon became president. The people involved in killing Robert Kennedy and Nixon's top aides had to be told the truth. This included Haldeman, Ehrlichman, Kissinger, Mitchell (who had the job of controlling Hoover's successors in continuing the cover-ups) and possibly others. Mitchell was instrumental in stopping Jim Garrison's investigation of Clay Shaw and other PCG members and in totally discrediting Garrison. He was aided by Richard Helms and others in the PCG through CIA support in the Clay Shaw trial cover-up efforts.
The White House plumber section of the PCG decided in 1972, with or without Nixon's knowledge and approval, to assassinate George Wallace, so that Nixon would be assured of the conservative vote. The PCG and its debts once again grew. E. Howard Hunt and Charles Colson, along with Tony Ulasewicz, Donald Segretti and others, were in a position to make demands in exchange for their silence. The Hunt million-dollar blackmail threat to reveal "seedy things" or "hankypanky" was never explainable in terms of Watergate or the Ellsberg break-ins. But three assassinations would certainly be worth a cool million to keep Hunt silent. Again, the Haldeman-Nixon June 23, 1972 tapes are revealing.
When the Watergate crisis occurred, Nixon was trapped by his own tapes, and the PCG was in grave danger. Discussions with Haldeman, Mitchell and others mention the Kennedy assassination conspiracy and the Wallace murder attempt on tape. The PCG was suddenly threatened as a group. The tapes couldn't all be destroyed because too many Secret Service people knew about them. Haldeman and Nixon managed to erase one revealing 18 1/2 minute section about the assassinations, but who could remember exactly what telephone calls or Oval Office conversations might have mentioned the truth about the three murders?
The PCG and Nixon again sensed the need for a successor who would keep quiet. They called on Gerry Ford when Agnew was forced out. Ford and Nixon, bound inextricably together by their mutual cover-up of the assassinations, worked out a deal. Nixon nominated Ford to be his Vice President. The Senate, completely bamboozled by Nixon and Ford, never asked Ford any important questions about the assassinations nor his performance on the Warren Commission. When they asked Ford about his book, he committed perjury twice before the Senate (see item # 15 in the list ennumerated below).
Nixon and Ford agreed that Ford would keep quiet if Nixon remained silent and that Ford would succeed Nixon if he were forced to resign or be impeached. They agreed to a pardon afterward. But the most critical part of the arrangement was that those tapes revealing the truth about the assassinations be kept out of circulation. When the Supreme Court ruled that the tapes must be turned over, it was then time to implement their agreed-upon strategy.
In addition, Jaworski, Colson, Mitchell, Kissinger, Haldeman, Ehrlichman, the Warren Commission, Hunt, Helms, Shaw and anyone else in the PCG had to be bought off, pardoned, protected or killed to insure their silences.
Leon Jaworski resigned. People asked why. The real answer was buried in the fact that Jaworski knew what had been going on. He knew because of information passed on to him by the Ervin Committee and Cox regarding the assassination and the cover-up. He was also personally involved in 1964 in the JFK cover-up.
Jaworski could have been a problem, even though he helped with the JFK cover-up from the beginning. Hunt was taken care of by getting him out of jail, buying him a large estate in Florida and paying him a lot of money. Helms could be counted on. Kissinger may have been a problem, but he finally agreed. His wiretaps were ordered to find out who knew about the assassinations. Hoover was dead. Clay Shaw was murdered. Warren was dead. Richard Russell was dead. John Sherman Cooper was bought off (he received an important ambassadorship). John J. McCloy was too old to worry about.
That left Colson, Mitchell, Haldeman, and Ehrlichman, plus some other small fry. The PCG strategy as planned with these men involved pardons for all of them in exchange for their silence, especially Haldeman and Mitchell, who not only knew what happened to JFK, but who also took overt actions to cover-up. (Haldeman erased the 18 1/2 minutes of tape and Mitchell nailed Jim Garrison.)
Newer members of the PCG may cause some problems. They all have to know the truth by now. Rockefeller and Alex Haig must know. George Bush, William Colby, Edward Levi and Clarence Kelly knew because of their access to the records, and they must have agreed to cover-up continuance. Ford and his cronies in the House had to continue to knock out any efforts by Henry B. Gonzalez of Texas to start a new House Committee investigation of the JFK assassination. They were very successful in their control of the House Rules Committee. Haig seemed to have been bought off with the promise of a top NATO post in exchange for his silence. And control over Frank Church and the Senate Intelligence Committee was necessary.
Gerald Ford remained committed to the PCG and to Nixon.
The tapes had to be controlled and edited at all costs. Nixon no doubt required help in listening to the tapes after Haldeman left and in sorting out those in which assassinations and cover-ups were discussed. General Haig was undoubtedly the man he selected to do the dirty work. It was almost certain that no tapes would be turned over to Judge Sirica or to Jaworski with any assassination references left on them. One of the tapes demanded by Jaworski had such references. This is the recording made on June 23, 1972 in which Nixon and Haldeman are discussing Watergate just six days after the break-in.
The Nixon transcript of that tape turned over to Judge Sirica upon orders of the Supreme Court showed many sections labelled "unintelligible." It is a near certainty that the critical sections were edited out by Nixon and General Haig before they were turned over to Sirica and prior to their transcription. Judge Sirica was the only person in the chain of possession of that tape who could have been counted on to make a scientific analysis of the tape to see whether it was tampered with before he received it. His near brush with death in 1975 must be viewed in that light and in the light of the PCG's use of weapon-induced heart attacks.
The rest of Nixon's tapes that were still in Gerald Ford's possession and control might have contained many references to assassinations and cover-ups. Rather than go through all of them and edit or erase the critical material, it was more likely that Ford would either turn them over to Nixon for total destruction or sit on them as long as he was president.
The evidence for the Power Control Group's and Ford/Nixon's strategy is as follows:
Nixon was White House action officer on Cuban invasion plans in 1960.
Nixon was in contact with Hunt and others during the Bay of Pigs planning.
Nixon lied to the American people by his own admission about the Bay of Pigs during his TV debates with Kennedy in 1960.
Nixon was financially linked to the Mafia and to Cuban casino operations before Castro took over.
Nixon was acquainted with Hunt, Baker, Martinez, Sturgis, Carlos Prio Socarras, and other Watergate people and anti-Castro people in Florida, and he was financially linked to Baker, Martinez and Socarras.
Hunt, Baker, Sturgis and Socarras were connected with the assassination group in the murder of JFK.
Nixon was in Dallas for three days, including the morning of the JFK assassination. He was trying to stir up trouble for Kennedy.
Nixon went to Dallas under false pretenses. There was no board meeting of the Pepsi Cola Company as he announced his law firm had had to attend.
Nixon did not admit being in Dallas on the day Kennedy was shot and did not reveal the true reason for his trip. He held two press conferences on the two days before the assassination, attacking both Kennedy and Johnson and emphasizing the Democratic political problems in Texas.
Research indicates that Nixon either knew in advance about assassination plans, or learned about them soon after the assassination.
Nixon proposed to Lyndon Johnson that Gerald Ford serve on the Warren Commission.
Ford led the Commission cover-up by controlling the questioning of key witnesses and by several other means.
Ford helped firmly plant the idea that Oswald was the only assassin and that there was no conspiracy by publishing his own book, "Lee Harvey Oswald: Portrait of the Assassin."
Ford purposefully covered up the conspiracy of the PCG in the JFK assassination and also covered up the fact that Oswald was a paid informer for the FBI. He did this by dismissing the subject in his book as worthless rumor and by keeping the executive sessions of the Commission (where Oswald's FBI informer status was discussed) classified Top Secret.
Ford continued the cover-up when he was questioned before being confirmed by the Senate as Vice President. He lied under oath twice to the Senate Committee. He stated that he had written his book about Oswald with no access to classified documents. He lied about this because his book used classified documents about Oswald's FBI informer status. He lied when he said that the book was entitled, "Lee Harvey Oswald: Portrait of an Assassin." This was significant in 1973 because the public by then had become very skeptical about a lone assassin. By changing one word in the title, Ford made the book seem a little less like what it actually was -- an effort to make Oswald the assassin.
Jaworski aided in the JFK cover-up by sitting on evidence of conspiracy accumulated by Waggoner Carr, Texas Attorney General, who he represented in liaison with the Warren Commission. He also stopped the critical testimony of Jack Ruby when he testified before the Warren Commission, and diverted attention away from Ruby's intent to reveal the conspiracy to kill both Kennedy and Oswald.
Nixon became president in 1968 only because Robert Kennedy was killed by a conspiracy. Nixon was well aware of the conspiracy whether or not he approved of it in advance.
John Mitchell and J. Edgar Hoover joined Nixon and the lower level members of the PCG in covering up the RFK murder conspiracy. They classified the evidence "Top Secret" and murdered several witnesses, controlled the judge in the Sirhan trial and the district attorney and the chief of police in Los Angeles during and after the trial. They still control these people and the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors. Clarence Kelly also became involved.
The plumbers group ordered the assassination of George Wallace in 1972 to insure Nixon's election by picking up Wallace's vote (about 18%, according to polls).
J. Edgar Hoover and Richard Helms were aware of who killed John Kennedy and Robert Kennedy. They helped cover-up both conspiracies.
John Mitchell controlled the trial of Clay Shaw and the Garrison investigation and discredited Garrison by framing him in a New Orleans gambling case.
Nixon and Haldeman discussed the assassination of John Kennedy, the conspiracy, Hunt's involvement, the possibility that Hunt might talk, the cover-up, the Bay of Pigs relationship between Nixon, Hunt and the other PCG members, and the briefing Nixon might have had to give anyone running against him in 1972, on matters of "national security".
Nixon and Mitchell discussed the assassinations and the attempt to assassinate George Wallace. Mitchell executed orders to suppress the truth about these events.
Gerald Ford had possession of the most critical tapes on which assassinations and cover-ups were discussed.
Jaworski could be counted on to keep the assassination material under wraps even after his resignation. He was aware of the conspiracy evidence and cover-up in all three cases (JFK, RFK, George Wallace).
Hunt was taken care of and will keep silent. He had been out of jail and living on a beautiful $100,000 estate in Florida with plenty of money, across the street from his Bay of Pigs friend, Manuel Artime.
Clay Shaw was murdered by the PCG, undoubtedly to keep him from talking once the truth about his CIA position was revealed by Victor Marchetti. He was embalmed before the coroner could determine the cause of death. Evidence indicates he was killed somewhere and then brought back to his apartment.
Hale Boggs, a Warren, Commission member, was possibly killed by the PCG. Bogg's airplane disappeared in Alaska. No trace of it was ever found and no explanation of how the plane could have crashed has ever been given. Mrs. Boggs has expressed doubts about it being an accident.
Four of the seven Warren Commission members are dead: Warren, Dulles, Russell and Boggs. Of the remaining members, Ford was President, John McCloy is retired and living in Connecticut, and John Sherman Cooper was made ambassador to East Germany.
Richard Russell, Hale Boggs and Cooper believed there was a conspiracy in the JFK assassination. Russell and Boggs both said so publicly.
Haldeman erased 18 1/2 minutes of a taped discussion with Nixon. This tape undoubtedly contained "national security" matters. The fact that Haldeman did the erasing can easily be determined by tracing the trail of possession of the tape from the day it was taken out of the vault to the day the gap was discovered. Haldeman had the tape with the recorder alone for nearly 48 hours. No one else had the tape alone long enough to do the erasing.
Ford and the PCG contemplated pardons for Mitchell, Haldeman, Ehrlichman and possibly others who know the number one secret.
Ford's statements to the sub-committee of the House Judiciary Committee concerning his pardon of Nixon dodged the real issue. Only Elizabeth Holtzman asked questions coming close to the number one secret. When she asked about a prior agreement, Ford said, "I have made no deal, there was no deal, since I became Vice President." Those last few words were not reported by the press, but a large number of Americans watched and heard him say them. Of course he spoke truthfully because the "deal" was made before he became Vice President.
Evans & Novak column -- September 12. 1974.
Paris Herald Tribune -- September 12, 1974.
Compulsive Spy, Tad Szulc, Viking Press, 1974.
"Nixon and the Mafia," Jeff Gerth, Sundance, December, 1972.
My Six Crises, Richard M. Nixon.
"Nixon and the Mafia."
"Nixon, Bay of Pigs & Watergate," -- R.E. Sprague, Computers and Automation, January, 1973.
"Nixon, Bay of Pigs & Watergate."
Trowbridge Ford, Holy Cross College, Boston, MA, Several papers and articles.
Warren Commission Hearings & Exhibits -- Vol. 23, Pages 941-943.
Nixon Transcript of June 23 1972 tape -- New York Times, August 6, 1974.
Trowbridge Ford -- Article on Gerald Ford & Warren Commission.
Gerald Ford Lee Harvey Oswald: Portrait of the Assassin.
"The Framing of Jim Garrison", R.E. Sprague, Computers and Automation, December, 1973.
"The CIA and the Kennedy Assassination" -- Unpublished article by R.E. Sprague.
Nixon tape, June 23, 1972.
Warren Commission Exhibits -- Testimony of Jack Ruby, Vol. V, Pages 181-213 and Vol. XIV, pages 504-571. Also Trowbridge Ford article on Jaworski.
Washington Watch and Triss Coffin newsletter, August 10, 1974.
Zodiac News Service release -- August 20, 1974.
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