Recently a reader sent me an email PDF attachment of a declassified government document (Operation Northwoods). He had been listening to a local radio show and the documents were being discussed and read on the air. What caught his and attention and mine is the section that talks about “a drone being painted to look like a real civilian aircraft charter and being substituted at the last minute, then blown up with a radio signal”. The following article or entry is directly taken from Wikipedia , there was more information here than I thought there would be, and plenty of links to sources. While I may not be fully convinced of the authenticity, to me the whole concept is believable and in today?s federal government, plausible. There are links to the document at the bottom along with sources. (Thanks to OldSoreHead for the contribution)<
The draft memorandum was written in 1962 by the Department of Defense and Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) representative to the Caribbean Survey Group and presented to Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara by the JCS on March 13, 1962, with one paragraph approved, as a preliminary submission for planning purposes. The proposal was rejected by McNamara.
Often claimed to be an unfounded conspiracy theory, the document was declassified in recent years by the Freedom of Information Act, thereby proving to be a verified conspiracy.
In response to a request for pretexts for military intervention by the Chief of Operations, Cuba Project, (Col. Edward Lansdale) the document lists methods (with, in some cases, outline plans) the author believed would garner public and international support for US military intervention in Cuba. These are generally attacks purporting to be of Cuban origin, usually with no real victims.
The suggestions of Northwoods include:
1. Start rumors about Cuba by using clandestine radios.
2. Stage mock attacks, sabotages and riots at Guantanamo Bay and blame it on Cuban forces
3. Sink an American ship at the Guantanamo Bay American military base – reminiscent of the USS Maine incident at Havana in 1898, which started the Spanish-American War – or destroy American aircraft and blame it on Cuban forces. (The document refers to unmanned drones, fake funerals etc.)
4. “Harassment of civil air, attacks on surface shipping and destruction of US military drone aircraft by MIG type [sic] planes would be useful as complementary actions.”
5. Destroy an unmanned drone masquerading as a commercial aircraft supposedly full of “college students off on a holiday”. This proposal was the one supported by the JCS.
6. Stage a “terror campaign”, including the “real or simulated” sinking of Cuban refugees:
7. “We could develop a Communist Cuban terror campaign in the Miami area, in other Florida cities and even in Washington. The terror campaign could be pointed at Cuban refugees seeking haven in the United States. We could sink a boatload of Cubans enroute [sic] to Florida (real or simulated). We could foster attempts on lives of Cuban refugees in the United States even to the extent of wounding in instances to be widely publicized.”
It has been reported that John F. Kennedy personally rejected the proposal, but no official record of this exists. Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara examined and rejected the proposal, and the President removed General Lyman Lemnitzer as Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff shortly afterward, although he became Supreme Commander Allied Forces Europe.
The continuing push against Cuba by internal elements of the U.S. military and intelligence community (the failed Bay of Pigs Invasion, etc.) prompted President John F. Kennedy to attempt to rein in burgeoning hardline anti-Communist sentiment that was intent on proactive, aggressive action against Communism around the globe. After the Bay of Pigs, John F. Kennedy fired then CIA director Allen W. Dulles, Deputy Director Charles P. Cabell and Deputy Director Richard Bissell and turned his attention towards Vietnam.
Kennedy also took steps to bring discipline to the CIA’s Cold War and paramilitary operations by drafting a National Security Action Memorandum (NSAM) which called for the shift of Cold War operations to the Joint Chiefs of Staff and The Pentagon as well as a major change in the role of the CIA to exclusively deal in intelligence gathering.
ABC News article on Operation Northwoods
Online copy of Operation Northwoods document
PDF version at George Washington University
Operation Northwoods on SourceWatch
Excerpt from Body of Secrets, p.82 and following