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December 16, 2016
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May 4, 2005
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January 18, 1977
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Approved For Release 2005/06/02: CIA=RDP80-00473A000201103-? G4 FnAM 1 7 DD/AogSt M MORANDUM FOR: T1ie Director Federal Bureau of Investigation rue ATTENTION Intelligence Division FROM . Robert W. Gambino Director of Security SUBJECT Colby/Luce Telephone Conversations Regarding Kennedy Assassination Information 1. Attached herewith are transcripts of two telephone conversations between former Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Director 1,11i,lliam B. Colby and Mrs. Clare Boothe Luce and one transcript of a conversation between Mr. Colby and Mr. Justin McCarthy. These conversations took place in October 1975. The transcripts, contain information concerning the activities of Lee Harvey Oswald prior to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. According to Mrs. Luce, the source of this information is a former Cuban refugee who was the captain of a boat engaged in anti-Castro activities. Mrs. Luce was concerned with the fact that even though her informant had told her that the infor nation had been passed to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), no mention of it appears in the Warren Commission Report. 2. Also attached are a blind memorandum detailing the circumstances of the typing of the transcripts and a news article dated 16 November 1975 which reflects that some of this information was brought to the attention of Senator Richard Schweiker while he was chairman of a Senate subcommittee investi- gating the Warren Commission Report. 3. This material is being passed for your information and any investigation you deem appropriate. FOR TTIE DIRECTOR OF CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE: Robert W. Gambino Attachments Approved For Release 2005/06/02 : CIA-RDP80-00473A000200120015-5 Approved For Release. 2005/06702: ,. IA-Rl P,80r'D 3A000200120015-5 J ice,>a Approved For Release 2005/06/02: CIA-RDP80-00473A000200120015-5 Approved For Release 2005/06402}-'16 A*RUP0=d4~?3A000200120015-5" , Telephone Conversation Between Mr. Colby and Mrs. Clare 221e, L, at 12:40 on Saturday, 2.5 October 1975 (from steno notes of Barbara Pindar transcribed the same day) Mrs. Luce: I have a big problem, a case in conscience. I got rather deeply involved during and after the Bay of Pigs, and up to the time of the missile, crisis, with a group called the (Directorate Revolutionario Estudiant 4 Note: the spelling of that is-just a guess ; the 773 ;W'' Whether YOU 3iow this or not, it was me who fed the missile stuff to Keating. I knew a number of these leaders well; they were going in and out of Cuba, and I paid for one of the motor boats. L.i.l]..Pawley did too. We thought we were doing another Flying Tiger. The missile crisis came, and I got a telephone call from Allen telling me that the Secrets Act had gone into effect and that henceforth there would be no voluntary American efforts. That ended that, and I don't know what I was doing -- maybe I went back to Arizona, or whatever. Then came the assassination. The night of the assassination, right after Oswald was caught, one of my boys telephoned me from New Orleans. Didn't I ever tell you this? Mr. Colby: No. Mrs. Luce: It was the captain of my boat. It seems that after the missile crisis a period of about a year had gone by -- he said that all the young Cubans involved profoundly in all of this had been told to scatter and scram, that he and two of my other lads Mr. Colby: When, after the crisis? Mrs. Luce:.. (Yes.) (were told) to leave Miami. Mr. Colby: In 1962? Mrs. Luce: Yes. They were to stop their efforts to free Cuba; and if they did not, they would be deported. It has a very interesting end involving you. In any event, this one had been told to leave Miami after the missile crisis was over, and he had opened a cell in New Orleans. He telephoned me to- tell me that Oswald was -- I am telling you what his view was -- was a hired gun:; Oswald had tried to penetrate their little cell; that they turned around and did a counterpenetration job on Oswald; all of this was done several xrLonths before the assassination. He said,--telling me on the phone, he was terribly excited -- he said you see he had no money, all of a sudden he began to get money, so we checked him and he had a little "Communists "W e e sa id H " in New Orleans. i o " ng up go gr Cuba be Free" or "Be Fair to Approved For Release 2005/0640 : CIq F ,.;$0'Wp3A00020012001 This- Page .j ~ y of 4N ;;,ii?~ Approved For kelease 2005/06/02 ?CtA-RDP80-0t 4'7 AG"002001200T5-5 had tape! recordings of what he was telling his group. " It was a m unter- penetration they went on. He said, "We have photographs of Oswald, passing out handbills on the street, 'Be Fair to Cuba., "" He said, "We are absolutely certain that Oswald was simply one of three assassination teams, that they were working out of Mexico City (or funded in Mexico City) by Castro." He said there were three assassination teams. Then he said, "We have these recordings, these tapes, and we have these photos, what should we do?' These fellows always trusted me. I said, "The first thing you do, the minute you hang up this phone, you telephone to the FBI, give them everything you have got. " Working in New York with these-Cubans is an extraordinary fellow, one of the most puzzling- characters I have every met; he is a devout Catholic ?--- Justin McCarthy. Justin is the American patrbif '-- although he has no money, never had money ???- of all these free Cubans in America. He- never worked at CIA, althoughCIA,tried to pick his brains. He tried to help the FBI. I knew 'Tustin McCarthy, and he used to send me bulletins; he said he had been sending them to me for the past six months, and I had never received one of them. Out comes the Warren Report. I have many other things to do, and I assuiremy lads had reported what they knew; and maybe it had been discounted, but I had taken the Warren Report at face value without poring over it - - and I forgot the whole darn thing. Then, this ,.rust be nine years ago, up turns a. guy named Lloyd Garrison`-_ what was he, a sheriff_ or something? Mr. Colby: District Attorney. Mrs. Luce: And he hit the headlines that the assassination had been a con- spiracy. Then it all flooded back into my mind that I had never been quite satisfied with what the Warren Report had brought out. Basically, T was troubled by the whole thing, so I said I thought I would call Garrison. In order to call him, I had to have the names of the Cubans, which had gone out of my bean. So I called Justin McCarthy. He said one of them was now, my lad, was in Miami. I got him on the phone, my fellow, and 'I said, "You remember your midnight call to me about the assassination of the President, I want to know what happened after that." He said, "We went at once to the FBI, they took all the tapes and photos and all our --- information and told us to keep our mouths shut, and shortly after that they informed us that if any of us talked to the press or anyone, dire things would happen. " He said one of the fellows on the boat was departed to Guatemala or Chile, and. one of them was murdered. He said, "I am a lawyer, have two children, I am making my way in Miami, and I never want to hear a damn word about the assassination of Kennedy because you Americans really do not want to know the truth. " He said, "We waited, expecting the Warren Committee-would want to have us, and we lever heard a word. " He said, "I want no part of it. " Then the Garrison thing dLed Approved For Release 2005/06/02: CIA-RDP80-00473A00020012 5k--this page a.A~y Approved F Release 2005/06`/0 rCIA-RDP80-004734OOO20Of2 down, and I am a busy woman, and I forgot about it. Three days ago, a reporter was in here -- a. gal- asking about my life style and said, in passing, "What do you think of the investigation of the assassination of the President?" I am afraid I hit the roof.. I said, "I think everyone must be absolutely off their rockers, What possible motive would the CIA have for murdering their own President? " I said, "Even to assume such a thing-is. beyond belief because where there is a murder or assassination, there is a motive, and there could be no motive." I said, "Who had the motive was Castro; but perhaps not even Castro, possibly just a bunch of Communist Cubans or plain Communists. " I said, "They always had a motive for that sort of thing.'" Schwei&ker called me up yesterday -- when the reporter said "What is the name of the young Cuban? ", I said, "Well, let's to me, call him)Julia-.Fernandez.,.'i' The Senator said to me "that is a fascinating ' .. L r\ --e u r^- +^ W C+- X , if * z % s%~l, Story. ( l_,:k4 V vnie,%,.r W Z`r3) .. yeste.r y doing on the Hill. " I said, "You are in the (process?) for headlines and destroying this country's security." He said, "If you have this informa- tion .and you can get your hands on it, it would be a good thing to lay this story to rest. " He said, "If you can find me these people, I assure you they will be listened to in closed session.'.' Now comes the big. thing,. Justin McCarthy runs an animal farm in Nyack: telephone number is 914; 647-8596. I have known him to be a man of complete integrity. He is a devout Catholic. He may or may not be a fanatic. _ What makes one think he is is what he tells you is just so terribly alarming; as he was the one, along with Bill Fawley, who involved me with these Cubans, I tracked him down and had a two-hour conversation on the phone with him this morning that was really staggering. When. I said to him, "Would you tell these things in the closed session in the Senate? ,r, he said, "I would find it more expedient and to shorten the process to hire loud speakers and put them on top of the Empire State Building." He said, "You don't know, Clare, the Cubans have not lost their desire to free their country, and there are plenty of them working Mrs; Luce: Not in the detail I told you. Schweiker.asked if I could locate - any of these men involved for him, and I said I would try. That was da I used that opportunity to say, "I do not know what you are Mr. Colby: You told the story to the Knight people? Mr. Colby: You told the story to Schweiker? Mrs. Luce: He read it in the Knight paper. MORI this page Approved For Release 2005/06/0.:-C ADP8( O'4A000200120015-5 h.I Approved For'Release 2005/06/924 GIA-RDP80-00413 0002004'2001 - FBI but they kept copies. Mrs. Luce: I did not disillusion him. In any event, if only to put my own mind at rest since -- he always says, which is fascinating if true, that my lads in New Orleans, yes, they did turn over the tapes to the Mr. Colby:: No, no. and he said, Bill Colby. " He said, "He is a daily communicant" -- at it, and they trust me, and I trust them, and they all trust me. of He said, "All these fellows on the Hill give a damn about is a big headline and political attention, and if this should involve my testis Eying and some of my fellows got bumped off, or their apparat shut down, I could not live with myself, no I will not testify. " I said, "You know, Justin, if they send for you, you might have to. " He said, "They are not likely to send for me unless you tell them, " He said, "They do not know who to ask for anyway. " (It doesn't appear in my notes, but. my memory is that he added that the reason the Hill doesn't get to the truth is that they never know who tb ask for.) He told me a story about working once with CIA. He said, "We did this DRE did one operation with CIA, as a result of which all the Cubans involved were caught and killed, and I do not want any part with the CIA. ". He said, "It too can be a sieve. " I said, "You have me really over a barrel. " I said, "Justin, I have to tell someone, is there anyone you trust?." He said, "There is only one man in this whole country whose word at this point I would take. " I said, "Who is that.? " Mr. Colby: Really? Mrs. Luce: So he says. If so, you are possibly, if --- I think you should get hold of Justin and give him a couple of hours because he has plenty to say.. If what he says is true -- he also told me, which I had forgotten --- that during the time of the missile crisis, and I was the one he came to, . ; id naturally the one I went to was Harry (note: this is first mention of "Harry"' matybe I misunderstood could she ha id ''Al " ; _ v~ sa len ) because I could. trust him. In a way, Justin McCarthy supplied a lot of background mateiial on the Cubans to (note: could not hear what she said). He said a few days ago -- Time is planning to do a (take-out) issue on the assassination of Kennedy. He said that, going back through their files, they came across my name as an informant, and he said "they tracked me down too. ". He said, then he told me -- I mentioned in passing that there MORI this page -' ?.. 4-.x ,f -.Apps owed J lea a ;2 05/061~p~ ~ChA ~2DR80-0G47 90200'120.0,7,5.5 Approved F Release 2005/06/02 ? CIA-RDP80=604.7 A0002A 1 b4 5 5-,T, was a wonderful girl on Time that knows more about the Cubans almost than anyone in CIA,/ r ei7llla '"a.d~ge -I He said the Time people are now trying to get information. He said, "I will talk to no one because there are lives at stake" --- except you. For nay own sake, if you have a go at him, I. would be very happy to know how serious it is. Mr. Colby: I will report back to you by all means. Let me do a little home- work on just where this (looks). You do not remember the name of the Cubans in Miami? Mrs. Luce: There are so many names; he talked to me so fast, He kept saying "Chilo." I asked who "Chilo" is, and he said that was his code .'Jose. Antbnio La Nuza: (Note: That last name may be all one word;: she said it means "the nut. .Luis Fernandez Rocha ' One of those fellows was the Director of the_.D. ?.'E;_ _ Then he also reminded me of a guy who used to come to see me --IGar (He had been told by the American Government to get out of Miami) and he died, having become the President of a university in Puerto Rico. These fellows were scattered all over the place. As I mentioned that to Justin, he said., !'I.know where they all are. " The thing that alarmed me is that -- he does not talk in an excited voice, but the statements are -- he said "People think of the Bay of Pigs and the nuclear showdown and the assassination of Kennedy as the end of the story, it is only the beginning. r" He said, ? "If you knew what is' being laid on for the U. S., " and he talks like that. I asked him, "What do you think happened? " .He said, "Oswald went to the FBI. " He said, "I know that, he was selling them information, and they did not believe him." I said, "That is incredible.'" He said, "I do not :know how much you know about the FBI, but no day goes by without desks being loaded with letters saying something will be blown up. "' (Note: I missed a little bit here due to something else happening in the office.) I said, "What happened? " and he said, The FBI got the word from on top 'Destroy the letters. Mr. Colby: From on top? Mrs. Luce: From the President, who was Johnson. I contended that if at that point the FBI had proven that. Castro had in mind assassinating the President, ' we would have been in war with Cuba. It might have been MORI this page Approved For Release 2005/06/02 : CIA-RDP80-00473A000200120015-5 L7~"i..+G n, .a Approved For' Release 2005/06102: CIA-RD1-801004 3A00D2Q 1 5-5 an act of State to shut up about it. If I had been the President, I would have had (Note: missed more due to outside interference). What is hideous about this is that'the CIA is being accused or Kennedy is being accused -- anyone except the people who probably were involved. If putting it at rest in a secret session will work, - if such evidence does exist, you are the man to present it. Mr. Colby: Schwe4ker does not know about McCarthy? Mrs. Luce: He only knows this -- I said, there is one man I know who might be able to tell you where tle se Cubans are, and that is a fellow named Justin McCarthy. He said, "Where is he? 11, and I said, "I do not know, I have lost track of him. " He said, "If you find him, let me know. " After talking with Justin McCarthy, I do not want him to talk to Schweiker. I do not know what to say if he calls again. Knowing the Senator, I may never hear from him. I leave it with you. xxxadxah NOTE: Ivirs. Luce closed the conversation by referring to a CIA paper entitled "Restless Youth" and asked if it had been declassified. Mr. Colby. said he would check on it, and Mrs. Luce. said she would like to have a copy if it~ has been declassified. MORI This Page Approved For Release 2005/06/02 :CIA-F QP80q9 PA 3A000200120015-5 Lxt Y,.__ _a r. 4-?!1w1 Approved For(Release 2005/06/0$ :,_:Cl k-QPOb-( 64"113 0 200120015-5 Telephone Conversation Between Mr. Colby and Justin McCarthy at 3:45 on Tuesday, 2~3 October 1975 (this transcript was typed on 21 December 1976. from steno notes of Barbara Pindar) Mr. McCarthy: I am glad to know you, even if it is over the phone. Mr. Colby: Mrs. Luce talked to me yesterday (sic). She gave me a capsule version of some of her chat with you. It puts me in a bit of a jam., obviously, because there are some things that really hold some potential for being very important in these days (of) post-mortems of everything. I wondered if maybe we should chat about it some- time, or, quite frankly, one of the main things I would suggest is that you might, want to go to this Senate Committee looking into this. Mr. McCarthy: No. There are several reasons why not. I am. sure we do not need to discuss them, * but there are many reasons.. Over the period of time there have been so many things. We were theonly ones who had the information about .the missiles in Cuba for many months, and we. beat our brains out trying to get. someone to do something (or believe?) and regrettably (in) Washington there are too many political (opportunists?), but there are too many lives at. stake. We risked our neck for all these years. We are interested in doing the right thing. Mr. Colby: 1: wondered if you could (slice?) off that New Orleans thing (and not, go any further than that?) Mr. McCarthy: As I said to her ---- (can't read the next few words), For me to be seen in Washington, it is (can't read the next few words). We do not trust anyone. We did so many operations for so long, and we were entirely successful and never lost a man, and then one day we did an operation for the Government and lost 22 men. Lives depend on it. Someone sent a Top Secret memo, and the one he sent; it to left it on his desk and someone came in and read (it) and the men were arrested. She asked, "Would you talk to Bill?" I said I would. We think it would be a good idea - - for me to go down I do not want to blow my cover, but I would like very much to chat with you and tell you. Mr. Colby: My problem is then I get information, and then what are my obligations. Mr. McCarthy: From the point of view of (seeing?) how to do it through persons other than me -- to get the end result. Approved For Release, 209S/06t