Forrestal and Olson

I have always been bothered by the similarities in things.  I see and make connections that I know other people make, too.  But not everybody sees these connections, and many who do may not see the story behind them.

A good example is former (and first) Secretary of Defense, James Forrestal.

What followed after the ceremony remains mysterious. “There is something I would like to talk to you about,” Symington told Forrestal, and accompanied him privately during the ride back to the Pentagon. What Symington said is not known, but Forrestal emerged from the ride deeply upset, even traumatized, upon arrival at his office. Friends of Forrestal implied that Symington said something that “shattered Forrestal’s last remaining defenses.” When someone entered Forrestal’s office several hours later, the former Secretary of Defense did not notice. Instead, he sat rigidly at his desk, staring at the bare wall, incoherent, repeating the sentence, “you are a loyal fellow,” for several hours.

Forrestal was taken home, but within a day the Air Force flew him to Hobe Sound, Florida, home of Robert Lovett (a future Secretary of Defense). Forrestal’s first words were “Bob, they’re after me.” He met with Dr. William Menninger, of the Menninger Foundation, and a consultant to the Surgeon General of the Army. Captain George N. Raines, chief psychologist at the U.S. Naval Hospital at Bethesda, soon arrived. It is not exactly clear what transpired during Forrestal’s brief stay in Florida. One story from Pearson was that Forrestal had several hysterical episodes and made at least one suicide attempt, certain that the Communists were planning an imminent invasion. Menninger explicitly denied this. He did say that upon his arrival, Forrestal told him that the day before, “he had placed a belt around his neck with the intention of hanging himself, but the belt broke.” But Menninger found no marks on Forrestal’s neck or body, nor did anyone find broken belts of any kind. Menninger considered Forrestal’s claim to be a nightmare. That’s about all we can know for sure.

On April 2, 1949, “for security reasons,” Forrestal’s coterie flew him to Bethesda. During the trip from the Air Field to the hospital, Forrestal made several attempts to leave the moving vehicle, and was forcibly restrained. He talked of suicide, of being a bad Catholic, and several times of those “who are trying to get me.” He was admitted to Bethesda under care of Raines, who diagnosed Forrestal’s illness as Involutional Melancholia, a depressive condition sometimes seen in people reaching middle age, often who saw their life as a failure. Upon arrival at Bethesda, Forrestal declared that he did not expect to leave the place alive. In a highly unusual decision for a suicidal patient, Forrestal’s doctor was instructed by “the people downtown” (e.g. national security) to place him in the VIP 16th floor suite…..

…snip….Throughout Forrestal’s hospitalization, access to him was severely restricted. One-time visitors were his wife, his two sons, Sidney Souers (a former DCI, NSC executive secretary, and alleged MJ-12 member), Louis Johnson, Truman, and Congressman Lyndon Johnson. Menninger visited twice. Although Forrestal was presumably glad to see his sons, he was not close to any of these visitors, and had a political antipathy to his government colleagues who came by. However, Forrestal was not permitted to see the several people he continually asked to see: his brother, a friend, and two priests…..

….snip….

Still, by May, Forrestal was improving. When Henry finally got to see him, he thought his brother was “acting and talking as sanely and intelligently as any man I’ve ever known.” On May 14, 1949, Raines decided that he would leave Washington in four days to attend a meeting of the American Psychiatric Association. After their last meeting on the morning of the 18th, Raines wrote that Forrestal was “somewhat better than on the corresponding day of the preceding week.” Forrestal continued in good spirits throughout all of the 20th and 21st. He showed no signs of depression, was well dressed, shaved, and in good appetite.

But the more Henry Forrestal thought about his brother being shut up at Bethesda and denied the right to see Father Sheehy, the more it bothered him. He decided he was going to take his brother to the countryside to complete his recovery, and made train reservations to return to Washington on May 22. He also reserved a room at the Mayflower Hotel for that day, then phoned the hospital to announce that he would arrive on May 22 to take his brother.

He was too late. The official account of Forrestal’s death runs as follows. During the night of May 21/22, Forrestal was awake at 1:45 a.m., copying a chorus from Sophocles’s Ajax from a book of world literature. (The New York Times added that Forrestal had been asleep at 1:30, then awake at 1:45.) A Navy corpsman named Robert Wayne Harrison, Jr., responsible for guarding Forrestal’s room, checked in, as was his job every fifteen minutes. Forrestal told Harrison that he did not want a sedative, as he intended to stay up late and read. Harrison reported Forrestal’s refusal to the psychiatrist – Raines’ assistant, Dr. Robert Deen – sleeping next door. They returned five minutes later to an empty room. Deen later claimed that Forrestal had sent Harrison out on a “brief errand.” During this time, Forrestal walked to the diet kitchen across the hall, tied one end of his bathrobe cord to the radiator, the other end around his neck, removed a flimsy screen, and jumped from the 16th floor. The cord came untied, and he fell to his death after hitting part of the building on the way down.

Source

The story goes that he had threatened to release information that Truman, among others, was not comfortable with.  His rapid change in behavior is what I find unusual.  Someone who could climb to that level to just shut down?  As well, his demeanor after the car ride with Symington.  What could affect a mans psyche to such a degree, with such little time?

Then you have the case of Frank Olson:

– November 28, 1953) was a U.S. Army biological warfare specialist employed at Fort Detrick in Maryland, who was at first said to have taken his own life due to depression. Later it came out, in the 1970s, that he had been given LSD without his knowledge at a joint meeting between CIA spies and US Army biowarfare experts, who cooperated on biological weapons and toxins and drugs under the umbrella of MKNAOMI and MKULTRA. This was said to have driven him to leap out of a hotel window ten days later. Further evidence pointed to the CIA having assassinated Frank Olson over fears that he would reveal the entire U.S. biological warfare program, as well as the chemical interrogation program, to the press. [1]

Source

His son feels that he was not a suicide, either.  What is significant about this story is that it is admitted that he was dosed with LSD.  And that we had been lied to.  Is this really a believable story?  Why would they come clean about this, but nothing else?  I cannot believe that the LSD story is true.  So then, what could you feel the need to hide by making such an admission?

The parallels between the two stories are interesting.  And they are not the only ones, as you can find several of them here.  I cannot recall where I read it, and it may be total hogwash, but I heard it said that throwing someone you had rendered unconscious from a window was an official assasination strategy for the CIA until the mid to late 80’s.  Perhaps he was interpreting the facts to create this statement, and if so it is understandable.

But the propensity of our government to sacrifice human life because of a possession of inconvenient knowledge is atrocious.  The whole thing smells like MK ULTRA, which was basically part of the cover story admission on Olson’s death.

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One Response to “Forrestal and Olson”

  1. How do I start the flash game Magic Pen? “? | Says:

    […] Forrestal and Olson « Bigfatfurrytexan […]

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