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Octafish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-13-08 09:32 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. The Puppet and the Puppetmasters
Thank you for understanding, gratuitous!

A great article on the subject from a better source, Playboy:

The Puppet and the Puppetmasters

an investigative report by Larry DuBois and Laurence Gonzales

Editors note: In September 1976 Playboy published a remarkable and extensive two-part article that delves into one of the Watergate break-ins great mysteries: the principal motive for the break-in itself. In the course of investigating part one of The Puppet and The Puppetmasters (posted below), reporters Larry DuBois and Laurence Gonzales uncovered many backroom deals between Howard Hughes, the CIA and Richard Nixon. In the piece, former Hughes executive John Meier contends that the Watergate burglars were looking for what Democratic National Chairman Larry OBrien -- who was once Hughess chief lobbyist in Washington, D.C. -- knew about the Hughes-Nixon connection and whether OBrien was in a position to reveal unsavory details before the 1972 election. The reason for Nixons paranoia? OBrien was friends with Meier and with another former Hughes executive, Robert Maheu. In fact, Maheu corroborated the Playboy account during an episode of 60 Minutes aired on February 28, 2005.

Nearly 30 years later DuBois and Gonzaless article remains fascinating reading, particularly in light of the publics renewed interest in the subject in the wake of W. Mark Felts admission that he was Deep Throat.

The Puppet and the Puppetmasters

an investigative report by Larry DuBois and Laurence Gonzales

Of all the mysteries surrounding the Watergate affair, perhaps the strangest is that in this, the most thoroughly investigated burglary in history, no publicly accepted motive for the break-in itself has ever been established. A vague notion that a group of Republican-sponsored burglars decided to get some dirt on the Democrats and did so without knocking is still widely believed. Lost in the bonanza of books and movies about who did it and how it was done is the central question: Why did it happen?

In the recent past, some accounts -- notably, J. Anthony Lukas massive Watergate study, Nightmare -- have suggested that both the Howard Hughes organization and the CIA had connections with Watergate. And some important pieces of the puzzle were put in place by a few of the investigators on Sam Ervins Senate Watergate committee. But the puzzle was never made whole, the pieces never seemed to fit.

A set of unusual circumstances led PLAYBOY to undertake an investigation of Hughes and the CIA and to get a fuller picture of Watergate. This report will examine the links between Hughes and the CIA and the events leading up to Watergate.


To sort of take the term Watergate and link it to Howard Hughes, I think, is really unfair.
-- BOB WOODWARD, April 25, 1976

IN THE SPRING OF 1975, a man named Virgino Gonzlez (no relation to Laurence Gonzales) drafted an affidavit that was executed in Mexico City. In the sworn document, he claims to be an ex-CIA agent who was assigned by the agency to monitor the activities of John Meier, a former Hughes executive. At the end of 1971, Virgino Gonzlez wrote, I was ordered to an assignment that included monitoring the activities of John Meier and was shown a file on him.... This file showed that Meier came from New York, his early business life and how he joined Hughes and evaluated the underground testing in Nevada. He was giving the AEC a hard time on behalf of Hughes.

Meier, a computer expert and environmentalist who had worked for Hughes off and on since 1959, was sent to Las Vegas by Hughes to evaluate environmental problems. Before Hughes moved to Vegas in November 1966, he wanted Meier to give him a full report on the effects of atomic testing at the Nevada Test Site, about 100 miles from the city. During three of Hughess four years there (1966-1970), Meier was his scientific advisor and one of the few Hughes executives who communicated directly with the boss. Hughes had chosen Meier to handle his personal pet projects, such as his fierce campaign against nuclear testing. Secretly -- not even known to others in the organization -- Meier managed Hughess investigations into areas that appealed to the farthest reaches of Hughess imagination: parapsychology, LSD, mysticism, cryonics (the science of freezing human bodies with the hope of later reviving them) and other equally unlikely subjects.


Hughes was extremely anxious to get himself into an alliance with the CIA that would protect him from investigation by other Government agencies.

A CIA cover organization is a strange and very useful thing. It's like having a magic box. You can put things in and you can take things out. You can take things out that you never put in and you can put things in that will never come out. Or you can get into the box yourself and go away somewhere -- or perhaps ago away forever. If the box is large enough, you can put an entire country inside it and no one will ever know.

The Hughes organization is such a box, the biggest and most useful of its kind. According to information given to us by a highly placed intelligence source, there is nothing else like it in the world, as far as intelligence fronts go. It is no secret to most foreign governments, most of which stand in awe of its ineffable, elegant vastness. From within this magic box, an important part of the United States' covert intelligence operations emanate. But by 1971, it had begun to crack. So much had been put into the box that things were beginning to come out. The magic was fading.

Hughes's alliance with the agency started as early as 1949. Only two years after the CIA got its charter, it began giving contracts to Hughes.

April 1, 1975, The Washington Post reported, "Hughes Aircraft has been mentioned as a potential hotbed of interrelationships with the CIA." The New York Times on March 20, 1975, quoted high Government officials as saying the HAC had been building satellites for intelligence purposes for years and "employs a number of high-ranking CIA and military men." As early as 1960, Maheu had Hughes's blessing in taking on one of the agency's most sensitive assignments: the assassination of Fidel Castro. Maheu worked out several unsuccessful plots with gangsters Sam Giancana and Johnny Roselli.

The affinity between Hughes and the agency was natural: America's most secretive billionaire and the most secretive part of America's Government. In a way, Hughes was a kind of modern-day Leonardo da Vinci, an eccentric genius who pushed to the cutting edge of the 20th Century, whether in early talking movies or in space satellites. Just after his death was reported, Newsweek quoted a top-ranking Washington intelligence official as saying, "Hughes gravitated into areas that other people refused to go into or didn't believe in." HAC pioneered the synchronous-orbit satellite, built the first Early Bird satellite and the Surveyor spacecraft that made the first soft landing on the moon and sent pictures back to NASA in preparation for the manned moon shots. Without Hughes's signal-amplifying microwave tubes, pictures from Mars would have been impossible. HAC is responsible for three-dimensional radar that is used for tracking hundreds of planes simultaneously. And the world's first operating laser arced across the labs of HAC. Laser weapons are now one of the hottest topics within the Pentagon -- they may someday make nuclear weapons obsolete. The secrets of laser-weapon technology are so closely guarded that Pentagon insiders will discuss it only in state-of-the-art terms.


Sorry, the link is busted and I got no pictures ... I'll forward the entire article to those who are interested.
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