Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Blakey Loses Confidence in the CIA

The committee's chief counsel, G. Robert Blakey, whose main suspect remains the late New Orleans Mafia boss Carlos Marcello, explained his loss of confidence in the CIA in a talk Saturday night. The committee had relied on the late George Joannides, a CIA officer called out of retirement, to help it find and review CIA documents during its investigation. But the agency never told the committee that Joannides had been the case officer for a CIA-funded anti-Castro exile group that had contacts with Oswald and an ostensible confrontation with him in New Orleans before the assassination.

"The agency set me up," Blakey said. Joannides, he recalled, frequently blocked the efforts of the House panel's young researchers to obtain relevant CIA records, but when they complained to him, Blakey said he accepted the CIA's assurances that his aides were being too pushy and suspicious. Looking back on it, he said, "I have no confidence in anything the agency told me."

CIA spokeswoman Jennifer Dyck said the agency had no immediate comment.
(Emphasis added)


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