head Porter Goss was once a member of the CIA's super-secret Operation 40, an
assassination squad which roamed through North and Central America during the
Along with a
number of men whose names became famous and whose lives and careers comprise a
large part of America’s Secret History, Goss appears
a comparison) in the historic
photograph at right, which also appears on the cover of "Barry & 'the
boys': The CIA, the Mob, and America's Secret History."
It is the only
extant photograph of the members of Operation Forty, the CIA’s assassination squad,
taken in a Mexico City nightclub in 1963.
Coupled with his close proximity to
the terrorist hijackers who used his
Congressional District in Charlotte
County as one of their main bases of
operations, this fact virtually
shouts out for closer examination
during the post-mortems dissecting
his tenure as CIA chief.
we first saw the photo, it was in
frame used by nightclub photographers back in the 60's. It bore the name
of a nightclub (La Reforma) in Mexico City, and was stamped with a date, January 22, 1963, ten months to the day before the Kennedy
"Guido, meet the General. General, meet Guido."
The Mexico City nightclub photo
reveals a mixed group of Cuban
exiles, Italian wise guys, and
square-jawed military intelligence
types. It was discovered among
keepsakes kept in the safe of the
widow of CIA pilot and drug smuggler
Barry Seal, where it was overlooked
by a 7-man team from the U.S. State
Department which showed up at her
house in 1995 to comb through her
Barry Seal had been recruited at the
age of 17, along with Lee Oswald, by
CIA agent David Ferrie, at a two
week summer camp of the Louisiana
Civil Air Patrol in 1957.
product of a patrician Connecticut upbringing, an elite preparatory school and
Yale University, Goss entered the high-stakes espionage game being played out
between the Florida Keys and the coast of Cuba after the CIA-backed coup against
Castro collapsed at the Bay of Pigs.
"During his junior year,
he met a CIA recruiter through his ROTC commanders,” reported the September
24, 2002 Orlando Sentinel, in a story headlined “TERRORISM FIGHT KEEPS
REP. GOSS IN POLITICAL FRAY.”
“It is true I was in CIA
from approximately the late 50's to approximately the early 70's,” Goss
told antagonist Michael Moore.
At the time the
picture was taken Barry Seal was a young-looking
24-year old. Porter Goss was the same age.
you a number, and taken 'way your
Seal is seated
third from left. Sitting right next to him (second from left) is Porter Goss.
Beside Goss is notorious "freedom fighter" Felix Rodriguez (front left), a Cuban
vice cop under the corrupt Mob-run Batista regime in Cuba who later became an
Iran Contra operative and a confidant of the first George Bush.
On the other side of the table
is the the only spook celebrant
displaying any regard for
his face with his sport coat is Frank Sturgis, famous for being one of the
Beside Sturgis (front right) is
another famous spook, at least among
Kennedy assassination researchers,
William Seymour, the New Orleans
representative of the Double-Chek Corporation,
a CIA front used to recruit pilots (like Seal). Seymour is regarded by many researchers
as the man who on several notable
occasions is said to have impersonated Lee Harvey Oswald, when that lone nut gunman was out of the
At the time it was
taken the CIA's covert action chief in Mexico City was David Atlee Phillips,
AKA Maurice Bishop, who reportedly met with Oswald in Dallas before the
"You don't have the negative too do you?"
sensitive nature of the picture was
confirmed by a person who had known
and worked with Seal, who
incidentally had been the
inspiration for the hit song "Secret
Agent Man," by his buddy Johnny
Rivers in the 'mid-60's.
The man, also the
executor of Seal's estate, reacted with unconcealed shock when first shown the picture. “Where did you get that?” he
demanded. “I didn’t know there were any… Where did this picture come from?"
“Yeah, Barry was Op Forty,”
Jerry Patrick Hemming confirmed. “He flew in killer teams inside the island
(Cuba) before the invasion to take out Fidel.”
a member of the team that broke into Democratic National Committee headquarters
at the Watergate complex in 1972, later admitted to having been part of
Other famous names who belonged to Operation
Forty include Thomas
Clines, Edwin Wilson and "Blond Ghost" Ted Shackley.
Colonel William Bishop showed author Dick
Russell a series of photographs of Latin-looking individuals who belonged to the
group. On the backs of the pictures were the words "Special talent 1960-65, Ice
pick man ... Butcher... Sniper and demo [demolition] expert ... Propaganda ...
Knife man... Pilot and navigator ... Mutilator."
“Bishop said, ‘We weren't
playing a nice game.’”
When nephew Chuck Giancana
wrote about Mob Boss Sam Giancana’s strategic move to Mexico in early 1963, he
wrote this about Operation Forty...
"It was to be an all-out,
no-holds-barred Latin American push. Mooney (Giancana) settled into a
lavish Mexico City apartment and went right to work, drawing on the expertise
and mammoth resources of the recently-formed CIA team of assassins and
operatives specifically trained for Latin American clandestine operations. CIA
insiders jokingly dubbed the team the White Hand, an allusion to the Mafia
killer progenitors the Black Hand."
"You're not cleared for that information."
photo was available at the time of his confirmation as head of the CIA, the
major media showed no inclination to press Goss on the matter. In fact, the
party line rang out everywhere.
"Rep. Porter J.
Goss has disclosed precious few details of his CIA
employment from roughly 1960 to 1971,” reported a profile in the Associated
Press. Reuters called him a “mystery man,” and said he had been “close-mouthed
about his past.”
“He worked in Haiti, the
Dominican Republic and Mexico-tumultuous countries during that decade of
the Cold War,” Reuters reported.
During a 2002 interview with
The Washington Post, Goss joked that he performed photo interpretation
and "small-boat handling," which led to "some very interesting moments
in the Florida Straits."
He acknowledged he had recruited
and run foreign agents and said he would be uncomfortable traveling to
Cuba but wouldn't say more.
prep-school education and a Greek major at Yale, Goss passed up the conventional
life to be a CIA spook,” reads one typical wire service account.
Actually, the facts lean
heavily towards the proposition that with “a prep school education and
a Greek major at Yale,” Goss’s choice to become a CIA spook in the early 60's was
and secret societies"
The appointment of Porter Goss revealed that
what passes for American civic life may in reality be just an elaborate game of
Inside Baseball. Goss
found himself paired often with fellow Floridian, Democratic Sen. Bob Graham,
then the chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, leading the joint
congressional inquiry into the attacks.
The two men share another unique
distinction: both were having breakfast on the morning of September 11th, 2001
with a man who reportedly wired $100,000 to Mohamed Atta.
"When the news [of the attacks on
the World Trade Center] came, the
two Florida lawmakers who lead the
House and Senate intelligence
committees were having breakfast
with the head of the Pakistani
testimony before Congress on
February 9, 2004, Chief Weapons
Inspector David Kay noted,
"Closed orders and secret societies,
whether they be religious or
governmental, are the groups that
have the hardest time reforming
themselves in the face of failure
without outside input."
the last time anyone heard a weapons inspector mention secret societies?
you ever get the feeling there's
something they're not telling us?
“Man in a trench coat,
Badge out, laid off,
Says he's got a bad cough…
Wants to get paid off.
The pump don't work,
'Cause the Vandals took the handles”