from ProGovernment Website
The movie, taken by amateur cameraman, Abraham Zapruder, was
quickly snapped-up by Life magazine for $250,000.00. Although Life published
still frames of the movie, the 18 second film was kept under lock and key - not to be seen by Americans until 1975.
To add to the confusion,
Warren Commission report printed two frames of the film in reverse - again implying a rear shot - an accident the FBI typified as a “printing
Following the broadcast in 1975, a
massive controversy followed giving rise to ongoing allegations of
The result immeasurably strengthened the charge - that had been bubbling in the background - that the President had been assassinated as a result of a well orchestrated conspiracy, and that this was covered-up to protect the guilty, who many now believe involved senior figures in the CIA and US military.
Not least it was pointed out that Henry Luce, the founder
of Life magazine was a close personal friend of Allen Dulles, the Director
of the CIA. Moreover, the individual who purchased the Zapruder film for
Life magazine was C.J. Jackson, formerly a “psychological warfare”
consultant to the President.
This, in turn raised
serious questions about the role and integrity of the mass media. Some years
later, Washington Post reporter, Carl Bernstein - who came to fame with his
colleague Bob Woodward, for their expose of the Nixon administration’s
illegal re-election campaign activities, known as “Watergate” - dropped a
media bombshell on an unsuspecting America.
Seeking to spread the blame, the New York Times published an article in December 1977, revealing that,
Spies were trained as journalists and then later infiltrated - often with the publishers consent - into the most prestigious media outlets in America, including the New York Times and Time Magazine.
Likewise, numerous reputable
journalists underwent training in various aspects of “spook-craft” by the
CIA. This included techniques as varied as secret writing, surveillance and
other spy crafts.
Of the fifty
plus overseas news proprietary’s owned by the CIA were The Rome Daily
American, The Manilla Times and the Bangkok Post.
This, Constantine explains, was a CIA project designed to influence the major media for domestic propaganda purposes.
of the most important “assets” used by the CIA’s Frank Wisner was Philip
Graham, publisher of the Washington Post. A decade later both Wisner and
Graham committed suicide - leading some to question the exact nature of
their deaths. More recently doubts have been cast on Wisner’s suicide
verdict by some observers who believed him to have been a Soviet agent.
...according to Deborah Davis in her biography of Katharine Graham - wife of Philip Graham - and current publisher of the Washington Post.
The operation was overseen by Allen Dulles, Director of Central Intelligence.
Operation Mockingbird continued to flourish with CIA agents boasting at having “important assets” inside every major news outlet in the country.” The list included such luminaries of the US media as,
...according to Constantine.
Woodward says that Reagan,
The purpose was to purge
the film industry of “subversives.”
This investigation was, however, curtailed at the insistence of
Central Intelligence Agency Directors, William Colby and George Bush - who
would later be elected US President. The information gathered by the Senate
Select Intelligence Committee chaired by Senator Frank Church, was
“deliberately buried” Bernstein reported.
Bernstein concluded that,
Of the household names that went along with this arrangement were:
Bernstein additionally stated that the two
most bullish media outlets to co-operate were the new York Times and CBS
Television. The New York Times even went so far as to submit stories to
Allen Dulles and his replacement, John McCone, to vet and approve before
The book caused uproar for the many revelations it contained. Included amongst them was the fact that the, until then, widely respected Encounter magazine was indirectly funded by the CIA. The vehicle used to covertly transfer funds to Encounter and many other publications, was the Congress for Cultural Freedom (CCF)– a CIA front.
A decade earlier, in 1965,
the CCF was renamed Forum World Features (FWF) and purchased by Kern House
Enterprises, under the direction of John Hay Whitney, publisher of the
International Herald Tribune and former US Ambassador to the United Kingdom.
His employment to head up the CIA financed Forum World
Features in 1965, caused a row with MI6 who felt the CIA had breached the
secret agreement between the UK and USA by recruiting one of their own
time, Crozier would go on to head up a shadowy anti subversive and dirty
tricks group called the “61,” that sought to counter communist propaganda.
Another group of which he was a member was the
Pinay Cercle - a right wing Atlanticist group funded by the CIA - that claimed credit for getting
Margaret Thatcher elected as British Prime Minister.
Especially targeted was then Prime Minister Harold Wilson.
Clockwork Orange relied heavily on forged documents that would be given to
selected journalists for publication. Many of these forgeries sought to
demonstrate secret communist ties - or east bloc intelligence affiliations - amongst high profile politicians.
This operation clearly favored a right wing Conservative administration under the leadership of Mrs. Thatcher. In the event, Wilson resigned, said to have been sickened by the numerous personal snipe attacks against him. During the time he was under siege, Wilson experienced numerous break-ins at his office, as well as having his phone lines tapped - courtesy of unnamed officials in the security service, it is believed.
By 1979 the Conservative
party was returned to power.
James Lilly, former Director of Operations at the CIA later became Director of Asian studies at the American Enterprise Institute - a think tank heavily staffed by former intelligence types.
Lilly, in giving testimony to a Senate committee during 1996 observed:
But even as the cold war rationale for subverting the media recedes into the distance, press manipulation continues anon.
A classified CIA report surfaced in 1992, that revealed the Agency’s public affairs office,
Basking in a glow of self satisfaction, the
report continued “In many cases, we have persuaded reporters to postpone,
change, hold or even scrap stories that could have adversely affected
national security interests.”
The democratic postulate, Chomsky says,
Despite this axiom, Chomsky finds that the media supports,
He additionally argues that the media is a mechanism for pervasive “thought control” of elite interests and that ordinary citizens need to,
The covert role of the media has now apparently shifted its focus.
One time expediter of the “cold war,” it now clamors for
the extension of “corporate power.”
It was Thatcher’s strident anti-communism and laissez faire free market economic policies that made her so attractive to powerful right wingers in the Conservative party, and ensured her election as Conservative leader.
Moss, received much of his inspiration from Cord Meyer, Jr., the London CIA Station Chief -and long time expert in covert operations. Additional input to Moss came from the CIA’s Miles Copeland, formerly the head of the CIA’s “Gaming Room” in Langley, Virginia.
The Gaming Room was
used to simulate covert actions prior to them being acted out for real.
His books “Necessary Illusions - Thought Control in Democratic Societies,” and “Manufacturing Consent,” co-authored with Edward Herman, are considered classics on the subject.
Chomsky argues that the role of money and elite interests continue to undermine a meaningful society.
Professor Chomsky’s views will be
expounded more fully in an exclusive interview to be published in a
forthcoming issue of The X Factor.
According to Bernstein, one of the Agency’s most valuable media “assets” was Hal Hendrix, the Miami News Latin American correspondent during the 1960’s. Hendrix, who was known as “The Spook” by his colleagues, was at the forefront of a CIA sponsored anti-Allende media campaign.
Other reporters sympathetic to the CIA’s strategy, funneled Agency funds to Allende’s political foes, as well as writing anti Allende propaganda for CIA controlled newspapers.
The entire “get Allende”
campaign was orchestrated by the Nixon White House which was under pressure
from major US corporations like Coca Cola and IT&T to “keep Allende from
Self censorship, the authors maintain, largely results from a set of “filters” inculcated into the very heart of journalism, that Chomsky and Herman call the “Propaganda model.” The first of these “filters” the authors maintain, arises from corporate ownership primarily resulting in the mass media being beholden to “profit orientation.”
The argument is that the largest media enterprises are now
owned not just by one or two corporate entities, but by dozens of them - via
cross-ownership. Consequently, a given media outlet is less likely to bite
the hand that owns it.
The Pentagon can be a great aid to a defense journalist providing inside information and other access. But this sort of co-operation and access is dependent on the angle or “spin” that will appear in the resulting story. In other words the article must meet with their approval. If, on the other hand, the story attacks the military, co-operation is quickly pulled.
Other powerful pressure groups operate in a similar fashion.
These include, for example,
farmers and brewing industries.
Television news regularly air news items that use pre-shot footage supplied by corporate film wizards. In the past, the fag-smoking, booze-guzzling archetypal reporter trudged the streets tracking down a front-page story. Today, however, the media hound merely cuts and pastes the contents of a freebie, pre-spun “Press Pack” - directly to his computer Desk Top Publishing program.
In short, investigative
journalism has been replaced by a clubby merry go round of money spinning
splutter that regales the reader with carefully wrought stories fronting as
Corporate money has
massive clout and if you want to stay in business, as a journalist, you
don’t rock the boat. By any measure this is self censorship.
These just as often end-up in the pages of Private Eye, so little advantage ultimately accrues. At least that is the rationale.