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Author Topic: Mysterious CIA Officer John Paisley -- Friend of KGB False-Defector Yuri Nosenko  (Read 349 times)

Offline Thomas Graves

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John Simkin at the so-called

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posted this Name Base list of books and journals in which Paisley was mentioned.

Namebase Entry for John Arthur Paisley:

Agee,P. On the Run. 1987 (305-6)

Back Channels 1991-10 (12)

Back Channels 1995-05 (12-5)

Codevilla,A. Informing Statecraft. 1992 (157-8)

Corson,W. Trento,S.& J. Widows. 1989 (17-52, 76-150)

CounterSpy 1981-01 (31)

Covert Action Information Bulletin 1979-#3 (24)

Covert Action Information Bulletin 1979-#5 (20)

Covert Action Information Bulletin 1980-#11 (34)

Covert Action Information Bulletin 1982-#16 (53)

Epstein,E. Deception. 1989 (272)

Groden,R. Livingstone,H. High Treason. 1990 (189, 329-30)

Havill,A. Deep Truth. 1993 (105)

Hougan,J. Secret Agenda. 1984 (38-40, 205, 315-20)

Inquiry Magazine 1979-10-15 (11-6)

Kessler,R. Inside the CIA. 1994 (291)

Minnick,W. Spies and Provocateurs. 1992 (170-1)

New York Times 1979-05-21

Penthouse 1979-03 (53-9)

Russell,D. The Man Who Knew Too Much. 1992 (206-15, 222, 755)

San Francisco Examiner/Chronicle 1979-01-07 (2)

Spotlight Newspaper 1979-04-16 (43-4)

Tarpley,W.G. Chaitkin,A. George Bush. 1992 (251-2, 321-3)

Trento,J. The Secret History of the CIA. 2001 (429, 511)

Washington Times 1989-07-25 (F3)

Winks,R. Cloak and Gown. 1987 (552)

(Dead link)


I'm looking forward to reading what Dick Russell wrote about him in his 1992 book, The Man Who Knew Too Much.

In his On the Trail of the Assassins, Russell says that, shortly after his retirement from the CIA in 1974,  Paisley bought a 3r-foot sailboat and anchored it for several months not far from the secret residence of (by then employed-by-CIA , false-defector) Yuri Nosenko in North Carolina.

I suspect the KGB or the GRU hit Mr. Paisley, and tried to make it look as though the evil, evil, evil CIA had done it.

--  MWT   ;)

« Last Edit: January 26, 2020, 10:39:19 PM by Thomas Graves »

Offline Thomas Graves

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I've borrowed the following from the "Spartacus" article on Paisley.

Primary Sources

(1) Alan Weberman, The CIA and FBI Supression of Information (2004)
John Arthur Paisley was a former CIA official who worked for the Agency on a contractual basis, who, according to Tad Szulc, was involved with Yuri Nosenko. The two men became friends, and John Arthur Paisley frequently visited Yuri Nosenko. Inquiry Magazine reported: "Mary Ann Paisley thinks her husband's death may be related to Yuri Nosenko...At the request of Senator Birch Bayh of Indiana, the Chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, the FBI began a counter-intelligence analysis of the Paisley case...the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency Stansfield Turner says Yuri Nosenko has 'no recollection of ever meeting Paisley.'" Author Jim Hougan cited a letter Mrs. Paisley wrote to Stansfield Turner, in which she mentioned that she had worked for Kathrine Hart (the wife of John L. Hart) when she was in the CIA. Angleton told Look Magazine, "To my knowledge Paisley was never involved in the clandestine side. I have doubts that he knew Yuri Nosenko" (cited in Inquiry 11.15.79). Joe Trento and William R. Corson reported John Arthur Paisley worked with Bruce Solie. Bruce Solie, 75, died on December 25, 1992, after 28 years of CIA service.

John Arthur Paisley was sailing on the Chesapeake Bay on September 23, 1978. In his possession was a briefcase of secret documents that dealt with the Soviets. The next day John Arthur Paisley was found in the bay, with two diver's belts weighing a total of 38 pounds strapped to his upper abdomen. The autopsy report stated the cause of death was a "Gunshot wound, penetrating head, close contact range. Entrance in left occipital parietal region with powder deposition within wound and on skull. Crania-cerebral injury. Missile recovered, large caliber, deformed, jacketed, lead. Trajectory: left to right (cannot be further evaluated)."

The gun was never recovered. Was the death of John Arthur Paisley a suicide or a murder? Had John Arthur Paisley put on the weight belts, leaned over the edge of the boat, shot himself, then fallen overboard with his gun? The Maryland County Coroner concluded: "John Paisley, a 55 year old white male showing advanced decomposition changes, died of a penetrating gunshot wound to the head. The manner of death is undetermined. Signed Russell S. Fisher, M.D., Chief Medical Examiner." The boat belonging to John Arthur Paisley was found by Maryland Park Rangers. The CIA was first on board and recovered the secret documents. Why had John Arthur Paisley taken these documents with him if he intended to kill himself? Bernard Fensterwald called the CIA and asked the Agency to "make available for him to interview a number of Agency personnel that appear in a telephone list finder which belonged to Mr. Paisley."

(2) Dick Russell, The Man Who Knew Too Much (2003)
We come now to a man who died under extremely suspicious circumstancesright in the midst of the House Assassinations Committee's investigation. Early in October 1978 I received a clipping from Richard Nagell in the mail. It was from the front page of the October 3 Los Angeles Herald-Examiner and headlined "CIA Mystery Death-Ex-Deputy Director's Body Found Floating in Bay." The subject was John Arthur Paisley, then fifty-five, whose decomposed torso had floated into the mouth of Maryland's Patuxent River and been discovered by a passing pleasure boat. The body, allegedly identified as Paisley's through dental records, was affixed to diving weights. There was a bullet wound in his head, with police investigators speculating on either a suicide "or an execution-type murder." Paisley had last been seen alive aboard his motorized sailboat the Brillig on Chesapeake Bay on September 24. The boat was found aground near his home mooring in Solomons, Maryland, the day after that.

Below the headlines about Paisley, Nagell had inscribed a typed message: "Was he nash? He was nash!" Nagell had drawn a box around one sentence in the article: "Paisley, who lived in Washington, retired in 1974 as deputy director of the CIA's Office of Strategic Research."

Only a few months before this, I had been sitting with Nagell in a West Los Angeles bar when he suddenly said, "Do you know what 'nash' means? The Russians used to use that phrase. It meant he was 'ours' and nobody else's.

When I mentioned "nash" to a couple of sources familiar with the intelligence community, they expressed surprise that I had even heard the term, but reiterated the Russian meaning. Now, in sending the clipping, Nagell appeared to be revealing that John Paisley was "nash" - a Soviet spy inside the CIA.

Officially, Paisley's death was ruled a suicide. But speculation about the activities of this hitherto-publicly unknown CIA official would be rampant among the media in the months ahead. At the time he disappeared, Paisley had been working under a CIA contract to coordinate a Top-Secret government re-evaluation of Soviet strategic capabilities and intentions. Now there were grave questions about the sophisticated communications equipment on his boat designed for secret transmissions, and about Paisley's earlier role in the CIA's debriefings of Soviet defectors.

Paisley's widow, Maryann, decided to hire a lawyer to "find out what really happened to my husband." Her choice was Bernard Fensterwald, Jr. Fensterwald had a reputation for taking on controversial cases and clients (including Nagell and Watergate burglar McCord), and I had no reason to suspect that this was anything other than part of his penchant for rattling the skeletons in the CIA's closets. He had managed to obtain a number of documents about Paisley under the Freedom of Information Act and, after Fensterwald received permission from Maryann Paisley, in 1980 I flew to Washington to examine the documents.
That was when I realized that a possible Paisley connection to Oswald might have dated back to the ex-Marine's time in the USSR.

In 1959, the same year Oswald "defected," John Paisley had been appointed chief of the Electronic Equipment Branch, Industrial Division, within the CIA's ORR. Paisley's primary function was overseeing the CIA's assessment of "the problems and accomplishments of the (Soviet) Bloc electronics industry."
Paisley's name never came up during the House Assassinations Committee's investigation. However, one committee report described information received from an ex-CIA employee "that the CIA maintained a large volume of information on the Minsk radio factory in which Oswald had worked. This information was stored in the Office of Research and Reports"-which would have been Paisley's office. The committee report continued: "Another former CIA employee, one who had worked in the Soviet branch of the Foreign Documents Division of the Directorate of Intelligence in 1962, advised the committee that he specifically recalled collecting intelligence regarding the Minsk radio plant."

When Oswald left the Soviet Union in 1962, he brought home with him a "Historic Diary" that was discovered among his effects after the assassination. One section is a detailed description of the Minsk radio and television plant. Here Oswald carefully noted the number of employees at this "major producer of electronic parts and sets." He also delineated that the factory "manufactures 87,000 large and powerful radio and 60,000 television sets," as well as the plant's size and various shops.
If the CIA became the beneficiary of this information, it would almost surely have come to the attention of John Paisley.

(3) The Baltimore Sun (26th January, 1979)
Government sources said it is not possible to rule out the the theory that the Paisley affair touches on the existence of a Soviet “mole” – a deep-cover Soviet agent planted inside the Agency – and the dead officer’s knowledge thereof. At first, the CIA claimed the documents in Mr. Paisley's possession were relatively unimportant papers classified "for internal use only." Later it acknowledged that Mr. Paisley had kept materials pertaining to the top secret comparative study of nuclear capabilities conducted in late 1977 by a CIA group and "Team B". The CIA also admitted that Mr. Paisley had served as coordinator of "Team B".

(4) William R. Corson, Susan B. Trento, Joseph Trento, Widows: The Explosive Truth Behind 25 Years of Western Intelligence Disasters (1989)
Paisley's retirement was sporadic at best. He frequently cut short sailing trips to go to Washington on what he said was CIA business. One reason Paisley was called back to the CIA was William E. Colby. 'Colby loved him. He really was very fond of him,' Sam Wilson remembers. Wilson says Paisley agreed to me back in and do a few individual jobs for Colby at the quest of John M. Clark, who was then Wilson's deputy. Wilson remembers that the first time he met Paisley, he was prepared to spend half an hour with him, but he was so enthralled with his abilities, he let the meeting go on for two hours. When he was done, Wilson found Paisley to be erudite, sophisticated, cultured, witty.''`Oh, what a sense of humor! He had it all together. Not greedy, not hungry, not ego-stricken ... I liked him,' Sam Wilson stated.

Wilson says Paisley enjoyed his new assignments. He 'seized upon the new challenges with quiet alacrity. He didn't miss a beat - no pause, no hesitation - as though he'd gotten sort of reinfected.'
At a retreat for top CIA officials in Warrenton, Virginia, Sam Wilson got a close look at Paisley. 'I remember him as a very incisive reasoner. It wasn't so much inductive as deductive. I know because we worked problems together some. Some times he would circle a problem and then intuit an answer. I would wonder how he got that. Just a straight line right into the center of the problem. He had a capacity to intuit that I have seen in some women, but I seldom see it in a man. I call it circular logic or a circular pattern of reasoning. You circle something like this, thinking about it, and all of a sudden inspiration hits you and wham-o, you've got it. I can't do it and I don't trust it when I think I am doing it.'

--  MWT   ;)

Edit:  Here's a 1979 newspaper article on CIA officer Paisley that says be debriefed/interviewed Nosenko and "Nicholas Shadrin".

We know now that Yuri Nosenko was the KGB false defector who tore CIA counterintelligence apart, , and that "Nicholas Shadrin" was the CIA and FBI "pseudo" for Nikolay Artamonov, a Soviet navy captain who had truly defected to the U.S. in the early 1960s, and who was kidnapped and "accidentally" killed in Vienna by the KGB  in the tragic KITTY HAWK (code name for KGB triple-agent Igor Kochnov) case after Artamonov had agreed to be used by those two U.S. intelligence agencies as a "dangle".  Interesting tangential note:  Kochnov claimed he'd been dispatched by the KGB to assassinate both (true) defector Anatoliy Golitsyn and (false) defector Yuri Nosenko, suckerinf CIA's Bruce Solie and others into believing Nosenko was a true defector.

Edit:  It seems I'm unable to post the PDF of the newspaper article here.  To find it yourself, google "baltimore sun" paisley nosenko.
--  MWT  ;)
« Last Edit: May 14, 2020, 09:49:37 PM by Thomas Graves »

Offline Thomas Graves

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Nagell said Paisley was "nash".

You know what that means, don't you?


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