The Anatomy of Assassination – By L. Fletcher Prouty – From Uncloaking The CIA (Edited by Howard Frazier, The Free Press, Macmillan, 1978, p. 196-209)
Assassination is big business. In fact, assassination is the business of big business and of the CIA and of any other power center that can pay for the “hit” and control the assured getaway. Rare is the individual “nut” who even gets a chance to shoot a chief of state or other big figure. The CIA brags that its operations in Iran in 1953 led to the pro-Western alignment of that important country. It takes credit for what it calls the “perfect job” in Guatemala. Both were achieved by assassination. In the Dominican Republic, Trujillo was removed by assassination . In Vietnam, Ngo Dinh Diem was removed by assassination. In both countries the hand of the CIA was evident. But what is this assassination business? How does it really work? How is it set up?
In all but a handful of countries around the world, power simply rests in the hands of those who have it until someone else is strong enough to take it away. There is little or no provision for change. The strongman stays in power until he dies or is removed by a coup d’etat, which often mean by assassination…
What, then, are the actual mechanics of an assassination? (In the business, the assassin – the professional secret murderer – is in fact, called a “mechanic.” ) How is an assassination made? If the CIA is involved, how does the CIA lay it on? The reality is much different from the usual picture. There is not some young character – an Oswald, a Ray, a Sirhan, or a Bremer – who broods over things for months, who writes a queer diary, who sends away for a mail-order gun and then draws attention to himself by all manner of strange activities. These are the characteristics of the “patsy” and the cover story. The real assassination scenario is quite different.
Foreign assassination, and to a degree domestic murders of that kind, are set in motion not so much by a definite plan to kill the intended victim as by a sinister plan to remove or relax the protective organization that is absolutely essential to keep the victim/leader alive. If the CIA lets it be known, ever so secretly, that it is displeased with a certain ruler and that it would not raise a finger against a new regime, you may be sure that some cabal will move against that ruler…..
Murder is the violent and unlawful killing of one human being by another. Assassination is murder, but the motivation and sometimes the method is different. Historically assassination is the murder of the enemies of a religious sect as a sacred religious duty. The assassin is a professional secret murderer who kills for someone else or for a great cause. In many cases today, the religious called “anti-communism” is such a greater cause….
We re now finally beginning to hear much about the CIA and the subject of assassinations, both domestic and foreign…
….By the summer of 1963 ( a summer that we should write about and research a lot more because it was a very important period),…By August of 1963 memoranda were being circulated in the highest offices of the U.S. government. (At the time I was working in the office of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.) These papers were so secret that they were unmarked, with no classification, and hand-carried from “need-to-know” person to “need-to-know” person. If papers are really that secret, you don’t put “top secret” stamps on them, or “eyes only” stamps on them, or registered numbers on them. You don’t put anything on them….
The actual killing was a simple thing, “for the good of the cause.” The USA and the CIA could wash their hands of it. They had nothing to do with it. Like all assassinations, it had just happened….
Since World War II there have been hundreds of coup d’etats, a common euphemism for assassination. The list will grow for as long as the United States chooses to do its diplomatic work clandestinely….
Practitioners of the profession of assassination by the removal of power reach the point where they see that the technique as one fit for the removal of any opposition anywhere. Thus it was that President Kennedy was killed – not by some lone gunman, not by some limited conspiracy, but by the breakdown of the very system that should have functioned to make an assassination impossible. Once insiders knew that he would not be protected, it was easy to pick the day and the place. In fact, those responsible for luring him to that place on that day were not even in on the plan itself.
The President went to Texas innocuously enough to dedicate a hospital facility at Brooks Air Force Base in San Antonio. That simple event brought him to the state. It was not too difficult then to get him to stop at Fort Worth “to mend political fences” and accept the plaudits and the backslaps and thee promises of votes from the millionaires and the billionaires at General Dynamics who had just bought off the tremendous $6.5 billion contract for the TFX, a plane that hasn’t flown very well even yet. And, of course, no good politician would go to Fort Worth and skip Dallas. All the conspirators had to do after that was to let the right “mechanics” know that the President would be there, when he would be there, what time he would be there and, most importantly, that the usual precautions would not have been made and that escape would be facilitated.
This is the greatest single key to that assassination: Who had the power to call off or drastically reduce the usual security precautions that are always in effect – by law – whenever a President travels? The answer to this question is more important to me than a genealogy of Lee Harvey Oswald or the people on the grassy knoll.