Col. Philip J. Corso and Sen. Kenneth Keating (Rep. NY)
From “The Day After Roswell” by Col. Philip J. Corso (Pocket Books, 1997, with William J. Birnes) – A Former Pentagon Official Reveals the U.S. Government’s Shocking USO Cover-up.
As Chief of the Army’s Foreign Technology Division in 1961, Philip J. Corso stewarded the Roswell, New Mexico, alien artifacts in a reverse-engineering project that led to today’s : Integrated circuit chips, Fiber optics, Laser, Super-tenacity fibers and “seeded” the Roswell alien technology to giants of American industry.
Dedication: In memory of Lt.Gen. Arthur G. Trudeau,…chief of U.S. Army Reserch and Development…at Pork Chop Hill in Korea,…deeply religious and went on “retreats” at Loyola….His accomplishments changed the world for the better…
Chapter 17 Star Wars (p. 251)
TOWARD THE WPRING OF 1962, GENERAL TRUDEAU TOLD ME OF his intention to retire. He was not going to be the commander of U.S. Forces in Vietnam, he’d been told…A West Point graduate, he was born into a generation of military officers who had absolutely no doubts about what was right and what was wrong, and he marched through two wars and a series of commands, including the head of Army Intelligence, secure in the knowledge that he was on the right side…He had been at the helm of R&D for six years after having commanded Army Intelligence for three years before that. Although the general didn’t explicitly comment much on the incredible facts we had uncovered in the Roswell file because he considered it just part of his job, he did joke about it from time to time with his old friend Senator Strom Thurmond. More than once, I would take the back door into his inner office only to find Sen. Thurmond and General Trudeau sitting on his couch and looking me up and down as I walked in.
“Art,” Senator Thurmond would draw, barley hiding his Cheshire cat smile, “what spooky things you think old Phil’s been into?”…..
…As the summer of 1962 came to an end, ominous reports were circulating all though Washington concerning Soviet freighters making their way into Cuban waters. The traffic was intense, but there was no response from our intelligence people on what was happening. The CIA was completely mum, and the word making its way through the Pentagon was that we were getting slapped around by the Soviets and were going to sit still for it. Whatever it was, friends of mine in Army Intelligence were saying, the CIA was going to downplay it because the Kennedy administration didn’t want a confrontation with the Soviet Union.
What was it? I kept asking,...My answer came in a shocking series of photographs, unmistakable surveillance photographs, that were leaked to me by my friends in an office of Army Intelligence so deep inside the Pentagon and so secret that you weren’t even allowed to take notes inside the room. I was asked, by officers who may still be alive and therefore shall go unnamed, to take a good look at the photographs they had developed from the spy planes over Cuba. They said, “Memorize these, Colonel, because nobody can make any copies here.” I couldn’t believe my eyes as I looked down at the glossies and then ran a magnifying glass over them just to make sure that I wasn’t seeing things. Nope, there they were, Soviet intermediate range ballistic missiles of the latest vintage. These babies could take out Washington in minutes, and yet there they were, sitting outside of hangers only a few miles from our marine base at Guantinamo Bay.
Had Gen. Curtis Lemay seen these photos, I had to ask myself? LeMay, a veteran of Korean bombing runs, should have been drooling over his desk at the prospect of bombing the hell out of Castro just for thinking he could even park ICBMs so close to US airspace. Yet no reaction from Washington at all. The army had nothing to say, the air force had nothing to say, and my navy friends were simply unresponsive. Somebody was putting the lid on this, and I was getting deeply worried. So I called one of my friends, New York Senator Kennedy Keating, and asked him what he knew.
“What do you mean missiles, Colonel Corson?” he asked. “What missile, where?”
It was October 1962.
“In Cuba, Senator,” I said. “They’re sitting in Cuba waiting to be deployed on launchers. Don’t you know?”
The truth was Senator Keating did not, nor did Representative Mike Feighan, whom I also called. Both legislators knew better than to ask me where I found the photos or who gave them to me, but before they did or said anything, they wanted to know why I believed them to be authentic?
“They come from our best resources,” I told them….
…Senator Keating asked whether I knew for sure that President Kennedy had been informed of the presence of the missiles, but I told him there was no way of knowing. Privately, I would have been shocked if intelligence sources had kept this information away from the President because there were so many intelligence pathways to the Oval Office the President would have found out no matter who tried to keep the information away. So it was pretty clear to me that the administration was trying to keep the news from the American people so that neither the Russians nor the Cubans would be embarrassed and have their backs against the wall.
I also knew that by going to Senator Keating and Representative Feighan I was taking a huge risk. I was leaking information outside the military and executive chains of command to the legislative branch. But, that same April, I had already testified to Senator Dirksen’s committee on the administration of the Internal Security Act that it was my belief- and I had proof to back it up – that our intelligence services, particularly the Board of Estimates, had been penetrated by the KGB and as a result we lost a war in Korea that we should have won. The testimony was regarded as classified and never released. But it made its way to Attorney General Robert Kennedy, who promised me, in a private interview at the Justice Department, that he would personally make sure his brother, the President, read it. Now…it was clear that unless somebody stopped them, the Russians were going to get away with it. Not on my watch.
President Kennedy had gone up to Hyannis Port, and the vice president, Lyndon Johnson, a friend of Ken Keating’s from his days as Senate majority leader, was completely out of the decision –making loop within the White House. The rumors were that because of his association with Bobby Baker, there was going to be an investigation of the vice president and he might (sic not) return as a member of the ticket in 1964. So Senator Keating didn’t recommend going to Lyndon Johnson with this information. Besides, we had to get it right in front of the public so it couldn’t be swept away, leaving the White House free to ignore it until it was too late to force the Soviet’s hand. This was a gamble, of course, because the whole world could explode in our faces, but I knew that the only way to deal with the Russians was put their noses in it and teach them a lesson. Had we done that in Korea the way MacArthur wanted to, there probably wouldn’t have been a Vietnam War.
One of my old friends in the Washington press corps was Paul Scott, the syndicated political columnist whose pieces appeared in the Boston Globe and the Washington Post. If we gave him the story, it would find its way into the Globe and the Post at the same time, right in the President’s face and forcing him to act. I didn’t enjoy this, but there was no other way. So Senator Keating, Mike Feighan, and I coordinated the strategy. I called Scott and told him I had seen some photos and had an interpretation he needed to hear…..