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[Source: vidiars.com]

Hunt Was Among Victims of a United Airlines Flight That Crashed in Chicago on December 8, 1972, Soon After Richard Nixon’s Re-Election

Dorothy Hunt’s life of adventure and privilege came to a tragic end at the age of 52 on December 8, 1972, when United Airlines Flight 553 crashed into a suburban home near Chicago’s Midway Airport.

Described by Nixon aide Charles Colson as “an extraordinary woman” and “one of the savviest women in the world,” Dorothy was a CIA operative married to E. Howard Hunt, who was at the time facing a long prison sentence as one of the Watergate burglars caught breaking into Democratic Party headquarters at the Watergate Hotel to dig up dirt for President Richard Nixon.

Thirty four days after Dorothy’s death, E. Howard Hunt pleaded guilty on all charges and was then sentenced to 30 months to eight years in prison, and was released after serving 33 months in prison.[1]

Dorothy was identified as the “paymistress” of hush money to the Watergate defendants and their families to keep the burglars from cooperating with authorities and testifying before Congress and at trial.

The crash was officially determined to have been caused by equipment malfunction and pilot error; however, the pilot, Wendell Whitehouse, was one of United Airlines’ most skilled and was found with high amounts of cyanide in his system, indicating he had been poisoned.[2]

A radio operator who had monitored ground control’s communications with Flight 553 reported an exchange pointing to Control Tower error or sabotage, which was suppressed in the news.

As the jet had closed in on its final destination, O’Hare, it had been diverted for unforeseen reasons and told to land on the little used and much more poorly equipped Midway Airport. Part of the airplane fuselage was buried in a city dump right after the crash by what an unnamed city official said were “orders from the top” so that it could not be examined The FBI threatened one of the eyewitnesses, William J. Simonini, who said that they then framed his two sons for crimes in an attempt to intimidate him.[3]

Investigators continue to work at the scene where United Airlines Flight 553 crashed into a row of bungalows on West 70th Place while approaching Midway Airport two days before.
Scene following crash of Flight 553 in Chicago on December 8, 1972. [Source: chicagotribune.com]

In July 1974, Charles Colson told a private investigator that Dorothy—and by implication the other 44 people who died in the plane crash—had been murdered by the FBI and CIA. Colson subsequently told Time magazine, “I think the CIA killed Mrs. Hunt,” in a statement he stood by decades later.[4]

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Charles Colson [Source: christianitytoday.com]

The motive would have been to send a signal to E. Howard Hunt to plead guilty at his trial, which he did, with the four Cuban-American burglars loyal to Hunt following suit.

The CIA would not want a trial that could expose that the Watergate scandal was a covert operation orchestrated by the CIA in which the burglars were set up to be caught. The CIA may have also been worried about Hunt exposing other Agency secrets at his trial if he contested the charges against him, including the CIA’s role in the JFK assassination.

A person with a short haircut

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Mae Brussell [Source: maebrussell.com]

According to Mae Brussell, one of America’s foremost assassination experts in the 1970s, 30 Watergate witnesses met strange deaths, including Dorothy Hunt, and many of those witnesses knew about CIA involvement in Watergate. Up to 12 people associated with Watergate in some way were on the doomed Flight 553.

Strangely, Dorothy’s Hunt’s wallet contained a slip of paper with the name of Dr. Gary Morris, who had died with his wife the previous March off the coast of St. Lucia, though his body was never found. Dr. Morris was allegedly treating Dorothy for pain and stress using hypnosis, which E. Howard Hunt used along with mind control in her espionage work.[5]

Article in the Boston Phoenix by SDS co-founder Carl Oglesby about the crash of Flight 553. [Source: aadl.org]

CIA Power Couple

Born in Dayton, Ohio, Hunt (nee Wetzel), after graduating from Bowling Green State University in 1944, worked for the Treasury Department’s Hidden Assets Division tracking Nazi contraband in Bern, Switzerland.

Dorothy then worked for the U.S. State Department in Shanghai, served as a technical adviser on Dick Powell’s film To The Ends of the Earth, a story of Treasury’s involvement in the international narcotics traffic, and worked as an administrator for the Economic Cooperation Administration (ECA) in Paris in the late 1940s managing the Marshall Plan.

In Paris, Dorothy met and then married CIA Operative E. Howard Hunt, a gifted writer of spy novels who had been press secretary to Marshall Plan Director Averell Harriman and helped coordinate Operation PBSuccess in Guatemala in 1954 that overthrew Guatemala’s leftist leader Jacobo Árbenz.

A graduate of Brown University, Howard Hunt’s father had been a founding member of the Buffalo Athletic Club with OSS founder William “Wild Bill” Donovan and Hunt served with OSS Detachment 101 in Yunnan Province in China during World War II with such CIA luminaries as Paul Helliwell, Lucien Conein and others. One of his jobs was as a sniper.

Howard and Dorothy’s son Saint John said that Howard “had that rare combination of traits, which allowed him to be in the front lines of the action, and then, after changing into his Brooks Brothers suit, sit and have lunch with the Director of the CIA. He was the classic CIA man: an American James Bond. He had a sophisticated intellect, a taste for wine, good cigars, and international intrigue.”[6]

Howardt’s stridently conservative, anti-Soviet, outlook was evident in his sneering at liberals he encountered while working as Harriman’s press secretary.

Hunt also referred to Pentagon Papers leaker Daniel Ellsberg in his memoir as a “traitor” and said he and others he worked with in the CIA were “deeply concerned by extremist elements—the yippies, hippies and zippies…SDS and the counterculture” who all wanted a peaceful reorientation of U.S. foreign policy in the 1960s.[7]

E Howard Hunt Leaving The Watergate Trial
E. Howard Hunt following his testimony in the Watergate case in 1973. [Source: allthatsinteresting.com]
The Berlin Ending (9780399112232) by Hunt, E. Howard
One of Hunt’s spy novels. [Source: bookfinder.com]

Howard Hunt was at times a renegade/loose cannon within the Agency who leaked sensitive information to Uruguayan officials in the early 1960s and engaged in illegal surveillance of presidential candidate Barry Goldwater in 1964, probably on behalf of Lyndon Johnson.

Hunt’s novels also landed him in trouble because they were often thinly veiled depictions of agency methods and sensitivities, though Saint John said that the books were meant to give disinformation to the KGB.[8]

Dorothy had been recruited into the CIA by Allen Dulles, who served as Office of Strategic Services (OSS) station chief in Bern when Dorothy was there.

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Allen Dulles [Source: libya360.wordpress.com]

The Hunts became a CIA power couple, working for the Agency in Mexico City, Montevideo, Uruguay, the Balkans, Spain and Tokyo, Japan, at the Atsugi Naval Air Base where Lee Harvey Oswald served as a radar operator.[9] Howard also played a key role in coordinating the Bay of Pigs landing, and would recruit veterans of that operation to the Nixon plumbers unit.[10]

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[Source: roughdiplomacy.com]

Dorothy in this time maintained a G-6 security clearance, higher than Howard according to Saint John, and remained an active CIA agent, taking photographs and reviewing key documents while working out of the embassies of different countries.

After living overseas for a good part of the 1950s and 1960s, the Hunts settled down together to raise a family in Potomac, Maryland, just outside Washington, D.C.

A family sitting on a couch

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All-American family: E. Howard and Dorothy Hunt with three of their four children. [Source: roughdiplomacy.com]

Dorothy told Saint John that on the day that JFK was assassinated, November 22, 1963, Howard was in Dallas; he had intimate knowledge of the events that day, indicating that he may have been involved in the planning in some way.[11] One of the tramps arrested in Dealey Plaza on the day of the assassination tellingly resembled Howard, and a CIA asset, Marita Lorentz, testified that Howard brought money to Dallas in envelopes.[12]

Howard officially retired from the CIA in 1970, though worked for Robert & Mullen Co. advertising agency which was a brass plate CIA front operation.[13] Howard admitted to Saint John that he continued to work for the CIA at this time, going to Langley to get disguises, cameras and speech altering equipment and reporting to then-CIA director Richard Helms. Hunt would regularly have lunch and socialize with Helms and wrote spy books that painted the Agency in a favorable light at his behest.[14]

Richard Helms [Source: sputnikglobe.com]

Hunt became embroiled in the Watergate scandal as one of Nixon’s “plumbers” who was caught breaking into the Watergate Hotel.

Saint John said that Nixon and Helms did not trust one another and that Nixon set up his own covert operations group (”the plumbers,”) to counteract any CIA efforts to bring him down and to see what the Democratic Party had on him that they could use in the upcoming 1972 election and to dig for dirt for potential foreign funding of the party.

When Howard joined the Plumbers, Dorothy was planning to divorce Howard who was not faithful to her, according to Saint John. She had grown tired of working for the Agency and thought that Howard was foolish for working for President Nixon and his people, whom she believed did not have the same moral fiber as them.

However, after Howard was arrested, Dorothy swung into action to try to help him and was trying to blackmail Nixon while serving as a paymaster of hush money to keep secret the wider conspiracy.

Watergate Conspiracy

Len Colodny and Robert Gettlin detailed in their book, Silent Coup: The Removal of a President (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1991) that the CIA secretly infiltrated the “plumbers” and staged the break-in in a sloppy way—likely without Nixon’s approval—in order to get caught.[15]

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[Source: amazon.com]

The arresting officer, Carl Shoffler, who had an intelligence background, was given advanced knowledge of the break-in by a Washington, D.C., Police/FBI informant, Robert Merritt, and set up the burglars by enticing them with the promise of a key placed under the secretary’s desk that would unlock a safe deposit box with vital information.[16]

E. Howard Hunt along with James W. McCord, Jr., a top aide to former CIA Director Allen Dulles, were coached to change their testimony before the Senate Watergate hearings to be made more incriminating to Nixon and his top aides.

Shoffler leaked the story of the break-in to Bob Woodward, who had an intelligence background going back to his days in the U.S. Navy when he was a briefer for Alexander Haig, Nixon’s chief of staff (1973-1974) and Secretary of State under Ronald Reagan, who engineered the exposure of the secret White House taping system that recorded all of the president’s conversations in the Oval Office.

Woodward and Carl Bernstein—who became famous for their reporting on Watergate—worked for The Washington Post, whose owner, Katherine Graham, routinely used their newspaper to promote CIA disinformation.

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Bob Woodward, left, with Carl Bernstein and their book, All the President’s Men. The two broke the Watergate story and may have actually been unwitting players in a sophisticated coup plot. [Source: csweb.brookings.edu]

According to Douglas Caddy, lawyer for E. Howard Hunt and other Watergate burglars, “Woodward and Bernstein, far from being heroes of Watergate, faithfully played out the roles assigned to them by military intelligence, the NSA and the CIA. The Washington Post and these two reporters perpetrated one of history’s greatest frauds in their reporting of the Watergate case, relying on the reel deep throat [Carl Shoffler].”[17]

Said Caddy further: “Watergate was a set-up, a charade from the beginning orchestrated by military intelligence, the NSA and the CIA.”[18]

Profile photo of Douglas Caddy
Douglas Caddy, center, with Woodward and Bernstein. [Source: linkedin.com]

The reason that Nixon was targeted in a silent coup was likely because a) a faction in the ruling class believed that he was too divisive and could no longer rule by consensus; b) he adopted tariffs and price controls opposed by high finance; c) he opposed granting the intelligence and military bureaucracies more autonomy, using the National Security Council (NSC) under Henry Kissinger as a weapon against them; and d) he initiated back-channel diplomacy with both the Soviet Union and China as a prelude to his support for arms control agreements (notably the Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty-SALT I) and détente policies that de-escalated tensions during the Cold War.

Saint John suggests that Dorothy could have been killed in order to protect the CIA sting operation/coup designed to bring down Nixon, which had to be carried out on the CIA’s terms, or as a warning to Hunt, McCord and other Watergate conspirators to keep silent about it along with other criminal acts associated with it.

Saint John Hunt [Source: youtube.com]

By threatening to blow the whistle on Watergate while blackmailing the President, Dorothy would have also been seen as a real threat to reveal other secret CIA operations such as Operation 40, an assassination program targeting foreign leaders and diplomats Nixon had helped coordinate as Vice President in the late 1950s working as a liaison between the CIA and White House. This is in addition to secrets about the CIA’s role in the JFK assassination, which she and Nixon knew about.[19] Howard told Saint John that he believed that Dorothy was killed as a warning to him to keep quiet about the JFK assassinsation, which he confessed on his deathbed to involvement in.[20]

And what better way to kill Dorothy than a plane crash because the target of the investigation would not be on one person but on what happened to the plane which could easily be framed as an accident?[21]

What Was Dorothy Going to Do in Chicago?

Saint John has spent the last half century trying to figure out what exactly Dorothy was flying to Chicago on December 8th, to do. Dorothy told Saint John that she was going to her cousins’ home in Chicago to deliver Christmas presents for them and their kids and that she wanted to leave $10,000 in cash with Harold “Hal” Carlstead for investment in a company controlling two Holiday Inns.[22]

Dorothy flew first class and, strangely, purchased the seat next to her on the flight for the briefcase carrying the cash as well as $250,000 in flight insurance payable to E. Howard Hunt. The latter resulted from Dorothy’s perception that her life was in danger; she had told Saint John that she was being followed and watched.[23]

Saint John said that his mother had never before bought presents for her Chicago cousins; that $10,000 was not enough to buy into an interest in a Holiday Inn; that associates of Hal Carlstead were linked to organized crime and that the Holiday Inns being referred to were known watering holes for the Chicago underworld.[24]

Dorothy, "An Amoral and Dangerous Woman": The Murder of E. Howard Hunt's Wife – Watergate's Darkest Secret by [Saint John Hunt, Roger Stone]
[Source: amazon.com]

Saint John emphasized that Nixon had received $500,000 from Mafia-connected Teamsters three days after meeting with Howard Hunt’s lawyer and Charles Colson regarding Hunt’s demand for a payoff.

At the time, the Watergate scandal had not been publicly exposed. Hunt’s silence had been bought for $250,000. According to White House tapes, John Dean told President Nixon that Mrs. Hunt had gone to Chicago to pass that money [part of the additional $500,000] to one of the Cubans, to meet him in Chicago.

The FBI later said that the money Mrs. Hunt had with her—which Howard later said included $2 million in American Express money orders, travelers checks and postal money orders—was to be used to pay off a local Chicago wire man named Michael Stevens. He was a proprietor of Stevens Research Laboratories (SRL), a supplier of sophisticated electronic eavesdropping devices for the CIA, who had sold Watergate chief burglar James McCord the bugging devices he was arrested with at the Watergate Hotel.

McCord significantly told Stevens that he was engaged in an operation for the CIA while Stevens told the FBI that the devices he was working on for McCord were set to transmit over secret CIA frequencies, and able to transmit to the highly classified CIA, DIA, and NSA networks. Keeping this secret was why Dorothy flew to Chicago. Stevens further told the FBI about threats directed against him by persons unknown who claimed that Dorothy Hunt’s death was a homicide.[25]

Lena Headey plays Dorothy Hunt, the matriarch of the family who gets pulled into a cover-up and financial payout scheme related to the bungled Watergate burglary that led to the resignation in 1974 of President Richard Nixon.
Lena Headey as Dorothy Hunt in HBO’s Watergate-focused black comedy series White House Plumbers. [Source: usatoday.com]

According to Saint John, in addition to the $10,000 that Dorothy carried with her, she had a suitcase full of incriminating evidence with which to continue pressuring the White House for hush money and she was threatening to divulge it to a CBS news reporter, Michele Clark, working on a story about Watergate.[26]

This evidence consisted of canceled checks drawn on the account of the Committee to Re-elect the President (CREEP) and laundered through a Mexican bank in the account of Bernard Barker, one of the Watergate defendants and a close personal friend of the Hunts.[27]

A week before the fatal crash, Howard Hunt had sent a letter to a CREEP attorney stating that “the Watergate bugging is only one of a number of highly illegal conspiracies engaged in by one or more of the defendants at the behest of senior White House officials. These yet undisclosed crimes can be proven.”[28]

Hunt’s Son Tries to Reveal the Truth

Saint John Hunt writes that, “whether Nixon himself ordered [Dorothy’s] removal or someone understood the language of silent nods, we may never know, but some things are known.” These things include:

  1. The White House tapes reveal that Nixon and his henchmen knew that Dorothy was taking that trip to Chicago.
  2. The FBI knew that there was something that was going to happen to Flight 553. This is evidenced by the fact that they had a large number of agents standing by ready to take control of the crash site.
  3. FBI agents were at the scene of the crash before the Fire Department, which received a call within one minute of the crash. The FBI later claimed that 12 agents reached the scene. Later it was revealed that there were more than 50 agents searching through the wreckage—a number indicating pre-knowledge since so many agents could never have been assembled so quickly without advanced warning.
  4. The FBI has no jurisdiction in domestic air disasters. They invoked the claim because they had evidence that “air piracy” and “sabotage” were involved, thus giving them the authority to control the crash site.
[Source: muckrock.com]
  1. The FBI was quick to claim that Hunt’s $10,588 that was found in the wreckage was “clean.”
  2. In the minutes after the crash, someone claiming to be from the “government” confiscated the flight recorder tapes from the tower control center at Midway. The cockpit voice recorder was also removed by the FBI and later turned up contaminated, with the crucial last eight minutes cut off.

7) The day after the crash, White House aide Egil “Bud” Krogh was nominated to become Under Secretary of Transportation, supervising the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)—the two agencies charged with investigating the airline crash. A week after the crash, Nixon’s deputy assistant Alexander Butterfield was nominated to be the new head of the FAA.[29]

  1. On the flight were several persons related to bribery and corruption deals with the White House. Attorney General John N. Mitchell, who was under investigation for corruptly helping the El Paso Natural Gas Company against its main competitor, the Northern Natural Gas Company. Mitchell’s decision to drop antitrust charges was worth an estimated $300 million to El Paso. Ralph Blodgett and James W. Krueger, two attorneys working for Northern Natural Gas Company in the investigation of Mitchell, were both killed in the crash.[30]
  1. Also killed in the crash was Michele Clark, a young CBS news reporter who had agreed to meet with Dorothy on the flight to discuss breaking the truth about Watergate. Witnesses said they saw Clark with Mrs. Hunt before the flight and that the two boarded together. Clark was also being helped on an article about Watergate by Illinois Congressman George Collins (D), one of the founding members of the Congressional Black Caucus, who had information on the bugging of the Democratic National Headquarters.[31]

Sherman Skolnick’s Investigation

Sherman Skolnick was a journalist living in Chicago who, in 1963, founded the Citizens’ Committee to Clean Up the Courts and specialized in exposing corrupt government officials.

Some time in 1973, he received a mysterious phone call suggesting that he “should look into the crash near Midway Airport. They murdered Mrs. Hunt and others.”[32] It was later determined that the call came from an official at the Midway Airport Tower.

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Sherman Skolnick [Source: 1970onceagain.blogspot.com]

Skolnick subsequently started writing the book The Secret History of Airplane Sabotage, which devoted a chapter to Flight 553. In it, Skolnick detailed a flawed and corrupt investigation by the NTSB, suppression of evidence that pointed to foul play, and many other lies.[33]

Skolnick said that a Chicagoan named Lawrence T. O’Connor had received a phone call from someone he knew with White House connections telling him not to take the flight to Chicago.[34] An ambulance driver told him that, when he went to the crash zone, “federal types” who were on the scene right away did not allow him to approach the burning airplane.[35]

Skolnick further found that a) all the air tower and airport instruments for guiding Flight 553 were turned off as the plane approached the airport; b) eleven witnesses claimed the flight had no lights as it crashed to the ground; and c) the plane was obstructed by a small private plane that was steered by the Midway tower to go right in front of it and then steered falsely into the ground.

Afterwards, the flight recorder in the tail of the plane was arranged to stop at a key point, censoring all that happened to Flight 553 as it was on the flight-path for landing. The altimeter of the plane was also sabotaged so the pilot and co-pilot were at a lower altitude than they should have been, causing the plane to pancake on top of suburban residences and then crash.[36]

A United Airlines 737 crashed into houses at 3722 W. 70th Place near Midway on Dec. 8, 1972, killing 45 people, including two people in the house.
Ruins of Flight 553 after it crashed into a suburban home, killing the occupants. [Source: chicagotribune.com]

On the flight, according to Skolnick, was a “hit man” pursuing Dorothy Hunt, whom Skolnick describes as a “Watergate payoff woman who offered executive clemency directly on behalf of Nixon to some of the Watergate defendants, [and] was seeking to leave the U.S. with over $2 million in cash.”[37]

Skolnick believes that Mrs. Hunt was on the way to arrange to take her money to Costa Rica, to link up with international swindler Robert Vesco through Harold C. Carlstead, whose wife was Mrs. Hunt’s cousin (Carlstead did accounting and tax work for mobster-owned businesses in Chicago).[38]

Robert Vesco [Source: nacion.com]

According to Skolnick, the Hunt “CIA power couple” were threatening to blow the lid off the White House if a) Howard was not freed of criminal charges; and b) Nixon did not pay them heavily (several million dollars) to suppress the documents they had showing that Nixon was implicated in the FBI and CIA’s political murder of President Kennedy.[39]

The alleged reason that the FBI and CIA were at the scene of the crash before anyone else is because they were under Nixon White House “national security orders” to arrest Mrs. Hunt and others on the plane for being part of a plot to blackmail Nixon.[40]

A newspaper article of a person pointing at a newspaper

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[Source: medium.com]

The hit man sent to kill Dorothy, Harold Metcalf, was identified by a military intelligence investigator who used his credentials to get into the crash site as a CIA parachute spy. Metcalf was working undercover as a narcotics official with the Office of Drug Abuse Law Enforcement (ODALE—one of the agencies that was merged to form the DEA) and had association with the Sarelli crime family.

After the crash, Metcalf allegedly walked out of the rear of the plane with little damage wearing a jumpsuit. It was speculated that he was a “double cut out,” meaning someone who carries out an assassination and then they themselves are murdered.[41]

A book cover with a person in a suit

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American mythmaking. [Source: businessinsider.in]

Half-Century Hindsight

Some 51 years have now passed since Flight 553 crashed and Dorothy Hunt was killed along with the others on the plane. The case remains unsolved and perpetrators of the airplane sabotage were never brought to justice.

The public remains today largely in the dark also about the true story of Watergate and the deep-rooted corruption behind it, being led to believe in the fairy tale advanced in All the President’s Men about the heroism of Woodward and Bernstein and the free press in saving the integrity of the U.S. government.

In reality the U.S. government has no integrity, as it would murder its own and many other innocent civilians to protect powerful people from exposure—as the fate of Dorothy Hunt and Flight 553 makes clear.


  1. Saint John Hunt, Dorothy: The Murder of E. Howard Hunt’s Wife—Watergate’s Darkest Secret, foreword by Roger Stone (Walterville, OR: Trine Day, 2015), 121. Hunt had felt betrayed by the Agency that he had served dutifully through the peak of the Cold War. His trial was rigged, with unlawful collusion between the Judge and Prosecutors.

  2. Hunt, Dorothy, 123, 174. The post-crash fire might have produced a portion of the cyanide, but was four times what should have been expected from such a fire. According to Sherman Skolnick, the CIA had developed devices that emit cyanide in the cockpits of Eastern Bloc enemy planes and speculated that “perhaps Flight 553 suffered a similar fate.” Whitehouse had a background in aviation air shows and precision firing. Corroborating the view that he was poisoned, in the last few minutes before the crash, the co-pilot and 2nd officer were flying, suggesting the pilot was dead or disabled such as from cyanide poisoning. The former head of a laboratory that made devices for the CIA that would cause cyanide to go off in the cockpit of a plane said he thought he was supplying those devices to be used against Eastern Bloc airplanes, but heard that some of his devices were used domestically in the U.S.

  3. Hunt, Dorothy, 163, 176.

  4. Hunt, Dorothy, 176; Edgar F. Tatro, “An Outsider’s Look at the Insufferable Leon Jaworski,” Garrison Journal, June 2022, 135. In 2007, Colson told St. John, “I will only say—and this is for our own protection—that I stand by what I said.”

  5. Hunt, Dorothy, 125.

  6. Saint John Hunt, Bond of Secrecy: My Life With CIA Spy and Watergate Conspirator E. Howard Hunt (Walterville, OR: Trine Day, 2012), 75.

  7. See E. Howard Hunt, Undercover: Memoirs of an American Secret Agent (New York: Berkley Publishing Corporation, 1974).

  8. David Denton, “E. Howard Hunt and His Strained Relationship with the CIA,” Garrison Journal, June 2022, 58, 59; Hunt, Bond of Secrecy, 95.

  9. Hunt, Dorothy

  10. Hunt, Undercover, 130. Hunt recruited anti-Castro Cubans in New Orleans after the Bay of Pigs for continued terrorist operations directed against Cuba.

  11. Hunt, Bond of Secrecy, 41. St. John Hunt told Alex Jones: “One of the things he [my father, E. Howard Hunt] liked to say around the house was ‘let’s finish the job—let’s hit Ted [Kennedy].” St. John Hunt interviewed on The Alex Jones Show, May 14, 2007.

  12. Jerry Korth, The Kennedy Assassination: What Really Happened? (self-published, 2023), 54.

  13. Hunt, Bond of Secrecy, 95.

  14. Author telephone interview St. John Hunt, October 2, 2023.

  15. See also Jim Hougan, Secret Agenda: Watergate, Deep Throat and the CIA (New York: Random House, 1984).

  16. Robert Merritt, as told to Douglas Caddy, Watergate Exposed: How the President of the United States and the Watergate Burglars Were Set Up (Walterville, OR: Trine Day, 2010), 3, 237.

  17. Merritt and Caddy, Watergate Exposed, 197.

  18. Merritt and Caddy, Watergate Exposed, 196.

  19. Author telephone interview Saint John Hunt, October 2, 2023. St. John told me that his parents in hindsight made the mistake of thinking they could get away with blackmailing the president whose career was placed in jeopardy and not face serious repercussions.

  20. Kroth, The Kennedy Assassiation, 125.

  21. Author telephone interview Saint John Hunt, October 2, 2023.

  22. Hunt, Dorothy, 109.

  23. Hunt, Dorothy, 120.

  24. Hunt, Dorothy, 110.

  25. Hunt, Dorothy, 111, Hunt, Bond of Secrecy, 96, 97. Mr. Robert Barcal of the Electronic Specialty Devices said that he was shown documents from the CIA giving SRL authorization to manufacture electronic eavesdropping devices.

  26. Hunt, Dorothy, 118.

  27. Hunt, Dorothy, 111.

  28. Hunt, Dorothy, 111, 118. Researcher John Simkin wrote that E. Howard Hunt threatened to reveal details of who paid him to organize the Watergate break-in. Dorothy Hunt took part in the negotiations with Charles Colson. According to investigative reporter Sherman Skolnick, Hunt also had information on the assassination of John F. Kennedy that implicated Nixon in the planning with the FBI and CIA. James W. McCord claimed that Dorothy told him that, at a meeting with her husband’s attorney, William O. Bittman, she revealed that Hunt had information that would “blow the White House out of the water.” Charles Colson in October 1972 told The New York Times that Dorothy had expressed her concern about the interruption of payments from Nixon’s associates to Watergate defendants. Nixon and his staff had been concerned about the Hunts’ blackmail threats and had asked John Dean to use a secret White House fund to “get the Hunt situation settled down.”

  29. Hunt, Dorothy, 121, 122. Seven to eight weeks after the crash, Dwight Chapin, the president’s appointments secretary, was dispatched to Chicago to become a top executive with United Airlines. Egil Krogh didn’t assume the Under Secretary of Transportation position until February 2, 1973 and was in the position for three months before he had to resign because of his involvement in the break-in in Daniel Ellsberg’s psychiatrists’ office. Butterfield was not confirmed by the Senate for his position until March 12, 1973.

  30. Hunt, Dorothy, 122. Also on the plane were four or more people who knew about a labor union that had given a large donation to CREEP to head off a criminal indictment of a Chicago labor union hoodlum.

  31. Hunt, Dorothy, 123. A model from Gary, Indiana, with a journalism degree from Columbia University, Clark was the first African-American woman to work as a reporter at CBS. Clark allegedly had insights on Watergate from her boyfriend, a CIA operative. After the crash, CBS demanded that her body be cremated by the South Side Chicago mortician handling the matter—possibly to cover up foul play. Later, the mortician was murdered in his business establishment, an unsolved crime.

  32. Hunt, Dorothy, 153.

  33. Hunt, Dorothy, 153. Skolnick’s secret history of airplane sabotage is available here

  34. Black comedian and activist Dick Gregory also told Skolnick that someone tried to steer him onto the plane but he changed his mind and took a different flight.

  35. Hunt, Dorothy, 161. Friends of the ambulance driver in the police and fire departments also said that they were not allowed to approach the airplane. Apparent “federal types” were there on location ahead of both the fire and police.

  36. Hunt, Dorothy, 167.

  37. Hunt, Dorothy, 157.

  38. Hunt, Dorothy, 157.

  39. Hunt, Dorothy, 157.

  40. Hunt, Dorothy, 163.

  41. Hunt, Dorothy, 154, 159. Skolnick says that his survival in this case was an oversight. He confronted Metcalf and asked him if he knew the airplane was sabotaged, to which he responded: “It was not supposed to…” before turning purple and then leaving the room.


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