First James Douglass, then Mark Lane, and now Peter Janney joins to make a trilogy of works which relentlessly and incontrovertibly makes the case that the CIA murdered President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963 in Dallas, TX. Janney paints the faces on the otherwise dark impersonal forces whose ghoulish actions proved once and for all that America is ruled by an oligarchy whose Georgetown values do not correspond with those of Main Street.
While other researchers have meticulously developed the forensic and legal arguments to indict and convict the CIA, in Mary's Mosaic Janney develops the psychological angle driving the CIA to murder a man in cold blood before a mortified nation. By naming names and profiling the socio-economic character of the criminals, we see how their minds worked to inevitably compel them to the murder of the century without so much as a crocodile tear.
One of the common characteristics of the CIA leadership is its patrician Ivy League pedigree. Nearly all of its leaders had alma maters such as Yale, Princeton, Harvard and sported, either genuinely or artificially, intellectual affectations. Quite frequently these Ivy alumni had known each other from prestigious boarding schools, exclusive social connections, and other privileged networks begun earlier in life.
Janney describes CIA senior executive Cord Meyer (Yale) as a fallen star, a man whose writing was Pulitzer caliber and whose artistic sensibilities were snuffed out in the disillusion of his idealistic dreams for world peace – a dream he once shared with his wife Mary Pinchot (Vassar). James Angleton (Yale), the godfather of the Meyer children, receives similar treatment as a man of letters, but who most likely did not have the sensitivities of the young Meyer.
The CIA leadership, goons that they were, hobnobbed in high society, a vantage from which Janney holds a fine view. His father, Wistar, hailed from a financially prosperous family who socialized with his peers while plotting and committing murders for "national security."
As noted, the social networks of these men encompassed not just their inbred Ivy League leadership. The Meyers had frequent intercourse with the Kennedys who were every bit as financially and socially credentialed as Allen Dulles, Wistar Janney, or James Angleton. The Kennedys would of course prove to be the cup of trembling for this crust of society when it ate two of its own.
Mary’s Mosaic encompasses far more than a narrative of her life and murder. Janney attempts to colorize the personalities and events swirling in official and unofficial Washington, and particularly among the beautiful people of Georgetown. It is here where the book makes its distinctive contribution to the Kennedy corpus – the time honored love, hate, and sex of power politics.
Mary (Pinchot) Meyer stars in the story of her own murder and that of John Kennedy. Janney offers convincing evidence that she and Kennedy shared a substantial relationship based upon love and respect rather than hormones. What made a tomcat like Kennedy settle down for Mary when he had a wife with glamour and intelligence?
Mary was neither an ordinary Georgetown socialite nor an ordinary woman by the standards of the mid 20th century. She might be described as a free spirited libertine who respected nothing of ordinary conventions. She took lovers as she chose, expressed views without discretion, and defied any sense of female orthodoxy even though by all accounts she possessed feminine mystique in abundance. She was quickly developing into an artist of substantial stature at the time of her death. She combined many of the attributes of an intellectual and artistic person, consequently drawing an avid and bewitched following.
Kennedy and Meyer most likely started their affair in the very late 1950s when the Kennedys moved in as neighbors to the Meyers in Virginia outside Washington. Although the dalliance continued into the White House, and as a secret to Americans, it was no secret to Jackie who had learned to grin and bear the infidelities of her husband.
Mary was certainly in the vanguard of the cultural revolution of the 1960s, becoming a devotee of Timothy Leary and his hallucinogenic remedies, something which Janney deplorably glamorizes. He provides reasonable, though inconclusive, evidence that she had proselytized a group of about 8 Georgetown society women into LSD cells who in turn were influencing their husbands to drop bellicose virtues for peaceable ones.
More surprisingly, Janney makes the reasonable case that Meyer “turned on” the President to marijuana and LSD in a couple of experimental drug trysts, activities coinciding with his reinvention as a peace champion from a cold warrior. It is this intervention and influence over Kennedy which I believe pushed the oligarchs over the edge.
The young, photogenic, and charismatic Kennedy was never a favorite among the power brokers of Washington – especially of Georgetown. Although a war hero himself and of the same social class as the troglodytes of the CIA, he was viewed by them as a parvenu lightweight who lacked the gravitas or time in grade to be president – especially when he threatened the prosperity of the military industrial complex.
It is without doubt – to me at least – that these men, heavy boozers, womanizers, and chain smokers, felt little kindred to Kennedy and felt that his flirtations with drugs justified the application of “executive action”, a CIA euphemism for murder.
Janney depicts the minds of many of these men as “patriotic” and acting in the best interests of their country. Indeed, most, if not all, of the early CIA leadership were World War 2 veterans who wished to spare their sons the gory battlefields and deaths they endured in combat. That was, at least, the visible rationale for their actions when they were not groveling before Wall Street titans to advance their masters’ financial interests.
These CIA leaders were national chauvinists in the extreme, brooking no challenge to American conquest and hegemony. Thus it mattered little how many lives they snuffed out to maintain the empire. The callous contempt for life was best expressed by Lyndon Johnson when he answered a reporter’s question at a party about why he wanted to fight in Viet Nam by pulling out his penis with exclamation, “Because of this!”
I surmise that the Georgetown junta determined that drug usage was a severe threat to national security and that Kennedy did not have enough good sense to keep his sexual organs away from women who would lead him down a primrose path to destruction. So they off and killed him they did.
Other fascinating insights are provided in Mary’s Mosaic. Janney tells of Washington Post eminence Ben Bradlee’s involvement with the murder of Mary Myer and his complete and total exposure as a CIA man, whose rapid rise at the Post was due in large measure to his perjury at the murder trial of Mary Meyer in 1965.
Janney also partially rehabilitates Gregory Douglas, the JFK research “pariah” who first exposed the notorious operation Northwoods and Operation Zipper, the CIA plot which planned and covered-up the murder of John Kennedy. He shows that Douglas’ information corresponds favorably with his own research and divulgences obtained from high ranking CIA officials such as Robert Crowley.
One of Janney’s named sources also admitted that the CIA murdered tens of thousands of people because they had to be moved out of the way and that the news is so faked as to be useless.
Calling Mary’s Mosaic a masterpiece would probably be as flatulent as some of the euphonies paid to Mary Meyer in the book, but at the same time, this work is perhaps the most important treatment of the murder because it exposes the names, psychology, and the unbridled arrogance of this still unaccountable organization of international terror.