Monday, January 23, 2006

Lee Harvey Osvaldo

On May 5, 1979, Raymond Lee Harvey was arrested by the Secret Service while he awaited the arrival of Jimmy Carter at a Cinco de Mayo Mexican festival at the Los Angeles Civic Center Mall. Shortly thereafter, they arrested Osvaldo Espinoza Ortiz, who had been standing nearby. Raymond Lee Harvey had been carrying a revolver and blank cartridges. His story, later confirmed by Osvaldo Espinoza Ortiz, was that they had been part of a plot involving two Mexican men who had been staying at the nearby Alan Hotel, and who were going to shoot Carter. Shooting the blanks was supposed to create a distraction for the real assassins. When police checked the hotel they found an empty shotgun case and three rounds of live ammunition in a room rented by a Mexican man who had checked out on the day of Carter's visit.

Although the authorities had what appears to be a confession backed up by some hard evidence at the hotel, charges were apparently dismissed on the basis of insufficient evidence. 'Raymond Lee Harvey' plus 'Osvaldo Espinoza Ortiz' equals 'Lee Harvey Osvaldo', which is close enough to send Carter a message. He appears to have received the message:

  1. On July 3, 1979, he signed a directive authorizing secret aid to Islamic opponents of the government in Afghanistan. This eventually led to the war in Afghanistan in which Islamic insurgents from Saudi Arabia managed to defeat the Soviets. Bin Laden rose to prominence in this war, and the basis of al Qaeda was established.

  2. On July 15, 1979, Carter gave his famous 'malaise' speech which was used by the Republicans to defeat him.

  3. After months of resistance, on October 20, 1979 Carter gave in to much pressure (going back to April 1979), particularly from Kissinger, and allowed the Shah of Iran into the United States for medical treatment. Coupled with the inexplicable failure to evacuate the American embassy in Tehran, this decision led directly to the hostage crisis.

We have to wonder how many of Carter's bad decisions, all of which had major consequences benefiting the extreme right in American politics and which continue to resonate in American politics today, were made as a result of the implied threat made by 'Lee Harvey Osvaldo', who, we have to assume based on the fact that nothing appears to have been done about the matter, was working for some official agency of the American government.