AGE OF SECRETS
(*Age of Secrets* by Gerald Bellett. Maitland, Ontario:
Voyageur North America, 1995. ISBN: 0-921842-42-2. To order:
telephone -- 1-800-268-2946; fax -- 1-800-444-5899.)
Cay Sal is one of the cays and islands stretching out from the
southern tip of Florida. In 1976, John H. Meier, a former
associate of Howard Hughes, landed there under cover of darkness.
Guided by "Chuck," Meier snuck past armed patrols. They both
reached a shed. "Chuck" picked the lock and they entered.
Inside was a case measuring about 7 feet long by 3 feet high. On
closer inspection, the "case" was found to be a cryonics chamber
containing the frozen corpse of Howard Hughes.
Or so says *Age of Secrets*.
Is the book true? On the one hand, if I wanted to avoid
upsetting those readers sensitive to human doubt, I could just
"cop out" by saying, "Hey, who knows? I'm not an expert." Then
again, "signs point to 'yes.'" Bottom line: the waters are deep
and it's hard to see all that's there, down below.
Readers familiar with Gerald Carroll's classic work on the
"Gemstone Thesis," *Project Seek* (Carson City: Bridger House
Publishers, Inc., 1994. ISBN: 0-9640104-0-2. Phone
1-800-729-4131), may recall the Howard Hughes/Richard Nixon
connection alluded to therein. Nixon's brother, Donald, is
mentioned as possibly engaged in business activities feared to be
potentially harmful to President Nixon's 1972 re-election hopes.
Quoting from a February 4, 1974 UPI (United Press International)
report, Carroll substantiates the claim:
...The White House got the Secret Service to investigate
business activities of the President's brother, F. Donald
Nixon, and put him under electronic surveillance at a time
when aides were worried that Donald's affairs would hurt
Nixon's 1972 re-election chances.
The President told a news conference last fall he
authorized electronic surveillance of his brother because
of a national security matter.
But government sources report that administration concern
about Donald began with his dealings with an associate of
billionaire Howard Hughes and later included trips to the
Dominican Republic, Switzerland, Italy, Greece and Hawaii.
And who is the "associate of billionaire Howard Hughes" mentioned
in the above UPI article? Carroll goes on to quote *Las Vegas
Sun* publisher Herman "Hank" Greenspun:
...For more than a year, the investigation centered on the
brother's [Donald Nixon's] business deals with John Meier,
a Hughes scientific advisor for mining claims now under
indictment for income tax evasion.
According to *Age of Secrets*, one of Meier's "business deals"
with Donald Nixon consisted of Meier's inadvertantly facilitating
a $1 million bribe. The money is said to have passed, through
intermediaries, from Howard Hughes to President Nixon in return
for Nixon's greasing the skids on Hughes' acquisition of Air
West. Meier, reportedly, was asked to keep a locked briefcase in
his hotel room overnight. Next morning, Ken Wright, head of
Howard Hughes' Medical Institute, came to Meier's room to reclaim
the briefcase. Unfortunately for Meier, Wright had imposed on
him by arranging, without Meier's foreknowledge, to exchange the
contents of the briefcase with one Bebe Rebozo -- right there in
Meier's hotel room.
Wright is said to have opened the briefcase and a stunned Meier
saw it contained rows of $100 bills totalling $1 million. Wright
then, according to the book, phoned Bebe Rebozo, a banker and
close friend of Richard Nixon, and told him to come up to Meier's
room. Uneasy about what was transpiring, Meier hid in the
bathroom. Rebozo is said to have then arrived and begun counting
Our old "friend," the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), is
alleged to have been a key player in the transaction: "The
secret transaction linked three powerful entities -- the
presidency, the CIA and the Hughes empire -- whose vital
interests would be imperilled by any disclosure of what had
happened in that room..."
For some reason not clear to me, Meier then made the big mistake
of leaving his bathroom hiding place, thereby alerting Rebozo to
his presence. Rebozo was not pleased to have Meier as a witness.
He grabbed the loot and made a hasty exit. Through Rebozo,
President Nixon then learned that "leftist" Meier had the goods
on him and could start talking.
So Richard Nixon, with all the power of the executive branch, is
said to have launched a "pre-emptive strike" against Meier.
"Their formula was simple," writes Meier in the book's Afterword.
"First they charged me with something since most people think
that indictment is synonymous with guilt... They persecuted me
in the press and the courtroom... My story is of a man
devastated by a corrupt system..."
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) was unleashed against Meier.
They searched his Los Angeles office. The IRS investigation of
Meier was reportedly launched at the behest of John D.
Ehrlichman, a high-ranking Nixon White House official. President
Nixon, on his part, was said to have dreaded the IRS discovering
the $1 million bribe from Hughes. A trap was allegedly laid
whereby R.M. Nixon and associates were lured by certain Democrats
into the ill-fated Watergate break-in. "Watergate was a
masterpiece of political espionage that can be boiled down to a
few important elements: the deliberate baiting of the Nixon
camp; the laying of a false trail to the DNC headquarters; the
use of an inside spy... and the collaring of the burglary team by
accident or by design," writes *Age of Secrets* author Gerald
Meier apparently had witnessed the bribing of Nixon; he passed on
what he knew to certain Democrats; and they laid a trap that a
nervous Nixon fell for. Meier, through his contacts with Donald
Nixon, suckered Donald into believing that the DNC (Democratic
National Committee) had incriminating info hidden in the
Watergate complex. Donald passed the false story on, to his
brother, Richard Nixon, and President Nixon fell right into the
President Nixon, for his part uneasy about Meier's likely
blabbing on what he knew, sought through his executive powers to
discredit and harass Meier. Meier was hounded, but had the laugh
on Nixon who was toppled from power in spite of his vicious
attempts at "damage control." So says the book.
Meier's allegations are corroborated by "The Gonzalez Affidavit."
Virgino Gonzalez (not his real name) was a deep-cover CIA agent
who apparently suffered pangs of conscience in connection with
deeds committed during his employment with "The Company" (a.k.a.,
the CIA). Deciding to tell all and expose to the world what the
CIA had been doing, he surfaced in Mexico City on May 2nd, 1975.
He carried a 10-page affidavit into the law offices of Goodrich,
Dalton and Rigueline, signed it, and asked that it be translated
into Spanish and filed in the Mexican federal court. Here are
excerpts from the Gonzalez Affidavit:
I love the United States and am grateful for all that it
has done for me... It is not my intention to place the
security of the country at risk and to involve any of my
colleagues in this statement. My intention is simply to
show that the agency [CIA] is a tool of the President and
those close to him in power and is used in a wrongful way
to harass people for personal political purposes.
At the end of 1971 I was ordered to an assignment that
included monitoring the activities of John Meier and was
shown a file on him, along with other agents.
On file were photographs taken at Orange County Airport on
July 8, 1969, showing Meier with Don Nixon and others.
These were taken by the Secret Service and had been passed
to Bebe Rebozo at the President's request.
The Hughes people, I was told, were still worried about the
campaign but I was then told that the IRS would release a
story on Meier in May . This they did on May 11,
saying they were investigating his affairs in Nevada.
[I handed] to the IRS some of the files we had taken from
Tom Benavides' office in Albuquerque; included were Meier's
own tax files and letters to and from politicians.
[On September 8th, 1973, Meier] met with George Clifford,
Jack Anderson's  assistant, at Vancouver airport. It
later showed from the stories coming out that Meier had
talked about payoffs, the President, Air West, and other
things bad for the administration.
Meier's troubles with the U.S. government escalated when he
helped the tiny nation of Tonga, located between Fiji and French
Polynesia, improve their airport so that the little kingdom could
improve its tourism industry. For some reason not directly
stated, the United States did not want Tonga to have a modern
airport. Hinted at in the book is a wish to keep Tonga isolated
so as to lessen the chance of curious eyes discovering a major
illicit narcotics operation being run through there. The Peace
Corps, says the book, had built and operated a warehouse in Tonga
which cleared parcels entering and leaving the U.S. Cocaine was
discovered. But why would cocaine be going through Tonga? Isn't
the enormous international narcotics industry laid out so that
South and Central America handles the cocaine and the Pacific Rim
manages the heroin?
The bottom line is that for some reason the American octopus
became even more displeased with Meier, and federal harassment
against him increased. The U.S. Secret Police apparatus began to
get quite nasty. Meier is said to have been railroaded into
prison on dubious forgery charges. While a prisoner, Meier was
visited by the CIA. He offered to prove his innocence by taking
a lie detector test. He did so, says Meier, and passed. The CIA
didn't care. One of the agents is purported to have said, "Mr.
Meier, isn't it obvious that we can charge you and convict you
and sentence you for anything we like? We know you didn't commit
forgery, but let me tell you, if you don't cooperate your life
will be a disaster..."
But Meier did not cooperate. The CIA wanted Meier to play ball
with them by signing some documents. One would have forced him
to reveal government sources who had been secretly feeding him
information. Another would have granted the feds complete access
to his files. Meier said, "No deal." Result? Right after Meier
was released from prison, after serving his sentence for
"forgery," he was framed-up on a murder charge. Although, after
years of trouble, the charge of murder was found to be without
merit, in the meantime Meier suffered enormously. He had his
bail set at a million dollars (which he at first had trouble
meeting), was shuffled from prison to prison, was often kept in
solitary confinement, was beaten by guards, and generally had
horrible treatment. Reading what happened to Meier -- all of it
without his having yet been found guilty of the murder charge --
made me sick. I keep coming across this type of story again and
again: individuals targeted by a government from Hell, either
because of greed hiding behind the badge of authority, or because
some politician is afraid of being found out. The American
people, commonly these days referred to as being furious at
"their" government -- just where do you think this anger is
coming from? Are millions of Americans all "crazy?" Or could it
maybe, possibly, by some stretch of the imagination be that there
is some =real= reason for all the horror stories having as their
origin Mr. Uncle Sam?
*Age of Secrets* sums it up like this:
In Cold War days, while the Soviet Empire still existed,
Western democracies perpetuated the image of communist bloc
governments as sufficiently hostile to human freedom to pit
the apparatus of the State against dissenting individuals.
Heroes have been made out of Solzhenitsyn and Sakharov for
their fortitude in resisting.
Ironically, in the United States of America -- for many a
symbol of freedom -- the government marshalled equally
sweeping forces to crush dissent.
Where openly repressive regimes silenced their dissidents
through committal to psychiatric wards and banishment, the
American way led to more subtle forms of harassment by
government agencies and ruin through the courts. If one
method was cruder, it was only because it operated in a
climate in which there was no need to maintain an illusion
of freedom while punishing enemies of the State.
---------------------------<< Notes >>---------------------------
 Jack Anderson was a well-known newspaper columnist of the
time, who broke many inside stories on Watergate and other
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