The Missing Years

The end of "The End." Please Stand by....

The Missing Years

Postby Paul S. » Wed Aug 06, 2008 8:43 pm

In another thread (People, Places, and Dates), a discussion has begun in the past day or so about Townsend Brown's "Missing Years" from 1958 to 1967. Linda has mentioned the family's proximity to Chantilly, Virginia at one point during those years -- which corresponds with the formation of a new intelligence service, the National Reconnaissance Office.

Here are the posts that started the discussion, which I propose to continue here:

Linda Brown wrote:viewtopic.php?p=17159#p17159

Paul's book and the way it is developing might just serve as the landing lights for ships circling the field right about now. I suspect that there are MANY out there that know far more than they have ever said. Maybe many of them were treated much the same way I was treated. Maybe they took things for what they seemed to be and of course were bitterly disappointed when the project they had sunk so much of their time and energy into didn't go anywhere.... or didn't seem to go anywhere.

I suspect that the gentlemen that you have mentioned just might be in that situation, possibly.... or POSSIBLY, like me, they are beginning also to put two and two together.

Then there I am sure are a whole bunch of others. "Leftovers" Mr. Twigsnapper snorts ... who knew fairly well what was going on but who are still bound by the strange secrecy thing that basically says " I can't mention anything until it specifically comes out into the publics view"

If thats the case and we can get specific enough in our speculations then you see that we are serving the purpose by switching on those landing lights. I am sure that some of those circling would be very happy to see that happen but they can't and won't come in before those lights go on.

And those nine years are dark, very dark.

Question here for all of you and for Paul as he considers what to do with this information.

What does the year 1960, (the summer expecially, mean to everybody) Why would A.L. Kitselmen, William Lear, Robert Sarbacher and Townsend Brown be meeting consistantly in the same area around Alexandria Virginia? Beau mentions that summer in his " Hello Stupid" but he certainly doesn't say much more.

I know so far that it had something to do with missiles .... communications ... because look at the background of these gentlemen.

I just see it as a kid would. I harbor the loving memory of Dad showing me a beatuiful substantial house during that summer. It was located in a little town in the country called Chantilly and I remember him saying to both Mom and me that his lab would be right down the street and that we could stay there in that area until I graduated ... and that she wouldn't have to worry about moving anymore ... and that we would own that piece of property ...... and two months later ......He was in Meadville Pa ..... and that dream had blown apart.

Some of you already perhaps see the connections here. I mention them because even though they don't answer any real questions they are important in their own right and need to be out there.

Paul , you know the story better than any one. It might seem like just more of the same but it still is a vital part of what was going on. Am I wrong? Linda


Rose responds:

rose wrote:viewtopic.php?p=17161#p17161

1960 Kennedy and Nixon were campaigning.

The space program was focused on putting John Glenn into orbit. From mission design to mission support, all of that would have brought new challenges.

But wasn't it about this time that Bill Lear wrote his enthusiastic article the instant travel method" that was to be arriving within a decade? Speculation time: We have been given the consideration that when TTB was doing subtests at the Philadelphia navy yard, some of those tests may have been for performance effects of something unkown, and over and above whatever else may have geen going on.

i wonder if a similar operation, intended to accompany/or piggyback on Glenn's mission was being designed and run by those men?


Mark Culpepper picks up the theme:

Mark Culpepper wrote:viewtopic.php?p=17162#p17162

Piggyback Rose is the operative word here.

I have been watching this forum for a long time now and the one thing that I have picked up on right away is ....... intelligence and communications.... thats what all of these men were all about. Intelligence and communications in 1960 means to me .... spy satellites. And thats where I would focus your energies if I were you.

I appreciate the Philadelphia Navy Yard stories but we are looking for a reason to be really BLACK during 1960 and I swear to you that the beginning of something that turned into the National Reconnaissance Office ..... ( Chantilly Virginia, by the way) would have been the most secret thing going. Chantilly. What are the chances of that being coincidental. NOT. Worth dragging your family from pillar to post? Hopefully worth all of the tears that I can feel in Lindas words. Am I off base here? I don't think so.


Then rose picks drops another pearl:

rose wrote:viewtopic.php?p=17174#p17174

Or for communicating with GRAB, the nation's first sigint signals intelligence sat system, launched in 1960?

Or for some NRO mission that remains classified still?

http://www.nro.gov/NRO_Fact_Sheet.pdf


This was followed by some (tangential?) discussion about 9/11 and an NRO drill conducted that day, but between Mark's use of the word "piggyback" and Rose's mention of GRAB, bells started ringing, which compelled me to compile this post:

Paul S. wrote:viewtopic.php?p=17206#p17206

... is exactly the word.

Mark Culpepper wrote:Piggyback Rose is the operative word here.


And Rose replies:

rose wrote:Or for communicating with GRAB, the nation's first sigint signals intelligence sat system, launched in 1960?


"Chapter 71: Missing Daddy" quotes some material from James Bamford's book about the NSA, "Body of Secrets," which describes some of the seminal work that went into surveillance satellites. The suggestion to look at pages 364-365 came directly from Morgan.

Re-reading that chapter now, I'm seeing that it possibly goes off in the wrong direction, or is at least incomplete. I'll type in some of page 365 here.

We pick up 6 weeks after Francis Gary Powers' U2 spy plane is shot down over Russia in the spring of 1960. Eisenhower has approved a new plan. Bamford describes a Thor rocket launch:

James Bamford - Body of Secrets wrote:Packed tightly in its fiberglass shroud was the world's first operative spy satellite.

The worLd was told that the package aboard the Thor contained two scientific satellites, one to measure solar radiation, known as as Solar-Rad, and the other to aid in navigation. "Piggy-back Satellites HaIled as Big Space Gain for U.S. Satellite," said the headline in the Washington Post on the morning of June 23. But hidden within the Solar Rad satellite was NRL's Elint Bird, codenamed GRAB, for "Galactic Radiation and Background." At a dwarfish six watts and forty two pounds, GRAB looked a bit like a silver soccer ball.

As GRAB orbited about 500 miles over Russia, it would collect the beeping pulses from the hundreds of radar systems throughout the forbidden land. The signals would then be retransmitted instantly on narrow VHF frequencies to a small collection of huts at ground stations in Turkey, Iran, and elsewhere, where they would be recorded on reels of magnetic tape. Flown to Washington on courier flights, the tapes would go to NRL scientists, who would convert the data into digital format and pass them to NSA for analysis.


The thing that strikes me as I read this again now is that GRAB was the "NRL's Elint Bird." This thing belonged to the NRL, and they controlled all the data before it went to the NSA for analysis. And who do we know who worked for the NRL in the 1930s, for whom the NRL could find NO RECORD of his engagement there. Hmmmm???

rose wrote: Or for some NRO mission that remains classified still?


Sounds about right to me.

But remember, here we're only talking about stuff that is merely "classified." We haven't even gotten to the stuff that is really secret.

Now I'm trying to remember who planted the bug in my ear a while back that "if there's any government agency that would be responsible for intercepting or monitoring extra-terrestrial communications... it'd be the NRO."

Which was formed during "The Missing Years," during which, as Linda has pointed out, the Brown's were circling a domicile in Chantilly, VA.

Do we need a new thread on "The Missing Years"? If we do, it will have to be in the moderated section.

--PS


And I just read the excerpt from Morgan's message at the start of "Chapter 73: Something Happened" in which he drops this hint:

Morgan wrote:However, in August of 1958 something major happened which changed his course suddenly and drew him almost immediately into the organization that I now call home. As in my situation, this move was encouraged by old ties put together initially by the Caroline Group.


Now, we may never know for sure, but there is reason to believe that "the organization that I now call home" was the National Reconnaissance Office - the NRO.

All of which brings us headlong into a timely discussion of "The Missing Years."

Figure out this riddle, and you just might have the first rung of the ladder that will get us out of this rabbit hole.

--PS
Paul Schatzkin
aka "The Perfesser"
"At some point we have to deal with the facts, not what we want to believe is true." -- Jack Bauer
Paul S.
Sr. Rabbit Chaser
 
Posts: 1362
Joined: Thu Mar 17, 2005 1:11 pm
Location: Psych Ward

Re: The Missing Years

Postby htmagic » Wed Aug 06, 2008 9:15 pm

Folks,

Rose's find on the NRO was good. The late 1950s was the start of the space race. The Atlas missile was one of the launch vehicles for the astronauts in the Mercury program.
I checked on the Atlas missile program and found this in Wikipedia:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atlas_missile wrote:The Atlas, first tested in 1957, was the United States' first successful ICBM (Intercontinental Ballistic Missile). It was a "1.5 stage", liquid-fueled (LOX and RP-1) rocket, with three engines producing 1,590 kN of thrust.

<SNIP>

CGM-16D Atlas Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles assigned:
* 1959 - 6

First tested and a successful launch at Cape Canaveral in 1957. 1959 is when the first 6 ICBMs were assigned and is during those 'missing years'.

We know that Convair is tied to the Atlas Corporation (same as the missile) and to Floyd Odlum. And we know Floyd Odlum and Dr. Brown had business dealings.

1957 is also when Vandenburg Air Force Base was moving over to missiles.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vandenberg_AFB wrote:The base was transferred to the US Air Force in 1957 and began its transformation into a space and ballistic missile test facility. One year later, Cooke Air Force base was renamed in honor of General Hoyt S. Vandenberg, the second chief of staff of the Air Force, who was an early advocate of space and missile operations.


Are there ties here? I'm not sure.
Linda, did your Dad talk about Vandenberg AFB or Cape Canaveral?
Maybe someone can pick this up and run with it better than I can.

MagicBill
Speeding through the Universe, thinking is the best way to travel ...
htmagic
Senior Officer
 
Posts: 661
Joined: Tue Apr 08, 2008 7:46 pm
Location: People's Republic of Maryland

Re: The Missing Years

Postby Linda Brown » Wed Aug 06, 2008 9:31 pm

Thanks for this Paul.

Note now that Bamford had said this particularly.

"As GRAB orbited about 500 miles over Russia, it would collect the beeping pulses from the hundreds of radar systems throughout the forbidden land. The signals would then be retransmitted instantly on narrow VHF frequencies to a small collection of huts at ground stations in Turkey, Iran, and elsewhere, where they would be recorded on reels of magnetic tape. Flown to Washington on courier flights, the tapes would go to NRL scientists, who would convert the data into digital format and pass them to NSA for analysis

I was wondering why Mr. Twigsnapper just logged in with a comment about Alexander M. Pontiatoff .... and now I know. Look at the words ...'" Where they would be recorded on reels of magnetic tape... flown to Washington on courier flights the tapes would go to NRL scientists... who would convert the data .... etc .....

What did Mr. Twigsnapper say? What would we ever have done without? Linda
Linda Brown
Resident Mystic
 
Posts: 653
Joined: Thu Feb 28, 2008 5:16 pm

Re: The Missing Years

Postby Rose » Wed Aug 06, 2008 11:05 pm

I thought you had it bad, Paul, to be writing a biography of a shadow, but now you're trying to document a veritable wisp!

Well, one thing we know is that GRAB didn't spring forth fully born on launch date. TTB would have been heavily involved in its design during the preceding couple of years, but that still leaves us with a missing 7.

Anyone wanna bet that those were Ampex machines in those huts on the ground?

rose
Strange travel suggestions are dancing lessons from god.
Rose
Senior Cadet
 
Posts: 297
Joined: Sun May 25, 2008 4:56 pm

Blowing Smoke?

Postby Paul S. » Thu Aug 07, 2008 2:19 am

Rose wrote:I thought you had it bad, Paul, to be writing a biography of a shadow, but now you're trying to document a veritable wisp!


Like the proposal says, "The biography of a man whose story cannot be told."

Well, one thing we know is that GRAB didn't spring forth fully born on launch date. TTB would have been heavily involved in its design during the preceding couple of years, but that still leaves us with a missing 7.

The first question that comes to mind is 'where does the tunnel diode' fit into all this?

Going back to Bamford's book, to those pages 364-365, and a passage I quoted in Chapter 71 (sorry, can't tell you page #, I'm working from a double spaced copy):

Bamford/Body of Secrets wrote: “The submarine service had us installing a small spiral antenna inside the glass of the periscope, and affixed to that spiral antenna was a small diode detector. It allowed the submarine skipper to have an electromagnetic ear as well as an eyeball above the surface. And it worked so well that we thought that there might be benefit to raising the periscope just a bit — maybe even to orbital altitude.

But remember also what Morgan said about that tunnel diode:

Morgan, 040623 wrote:(Remember, we are using that phrase but TTBs "tunnel diode" is amazingly different than the one that is mentioned in open sources.)

So I think we're learning now that Dr Brown was involved in surveillance communications that worked for both submarines and satellites. The question is, "what was so special about his "amazingly different" tunnel diode??

Anyone wanna bet that those were Ampex machines in those huts on the ground?

A perfectly reasonable assumption:

http://www.ce.org/Events/Awards/468.htm

Not long after creating the standard for audio recording in the late 1940s, Ampex produced the first data instrumentation recorder for storing large amounts of information on tape. The machines were used in laboratories and aboard aircraft to record rapidly generated scientific information.

Now, think about this: all of this is in the years coming OUT of the "wounded prairie chicken routine." Which would imply that much of what those years was about was camouflage and diversion from something that was demonstrated at Pearl Harbor in 1950. The years I'm talking about here, the early to mid-50s, include the whole "Project Winterhaven" undertaking. So, how much of that was .... as Linda likes to quote her father saying: "blowing smoke and steaming in a different direction"?

Puts a whole different cast on things, if you start looking at it that way...

But still, somehow, presumably... you wind up in 1966 with an FTM.

Connect THOSE dots.

--PS
Paul Schatzkin
aka "The Perfesser"
"At some point we have to deal with the facts, not what we want to believe is true." -- Jack Bauer
Paul S.
Sr. Rabbit Chaser
 
Posts: 1362
Joined: Thu Mar 17, 2005 1:11 pm
Location: Psych Ward

Re: The Missing Years

Postby Rose » Thu Aug 07, 2008 8:32 am

Adding this here for the sake of accuracy: Although the satellite programs were underway by 1960, the NRO organization was actually not in place until 1961. All the organizational proposal memos are here.

http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB35/index.html

The same site also has this mention of GRAB:

the Navy's space reconnaissance effort, at the time consisting of the (GRAB) satellite, whose radar ferret mission involved the collection of Soviet radar signals, became Program C. Although the GRAB effort was carried out by the Naval Research Laboratory, the director of the Office of Naval Intelligence would serve as Program C director until 1971.

I just think it's so curious that a satellite supposed meant only to focus on earthly eavesdropping would have a name like Galactic Radiation and Background. I guess SRAB was too hard to pronounce.

rose
Strange travel suggestions are dancing lessons from god.
Rose
Senior Cadet
 
Posts: 297
Joined: Sun May 25, 2008 4:56 pm

Ferret Missions

Postby Paul S. » Thu Aug 07, 2008 1:10 pm

I haven't looked at the link yet, but I will shortly. In the meantime there are a couple of things that jump out here:

Rose wrote:the Navy's space reconnaissance effort, at the time consisting of the (GRAB) satellite, whose radar ferret mission involved the collection of Soviet radar signals, became Program C. Although the GRAB effort was carried out by the Naval Research Laboratory, the director of the Office of Naval Intelligence would serve as Program C director until 1971.


You might want to look up "ferret mission." That was the name of the air-borne eavesdropping missions that preceded GRAB and the rest of the satellite surveillance program. It involved flying to the border of Russia and then using what equipment they had at their disposal gather the data they wanted.

Morgan spoke of "ferret missions" a couple of times, but I see now that none of those references has made it into the book. The first time it came up was in one of Morgan's first hard-copy letters to me. I don't have the exact date, but it looks like late April, 2004:

Morgan wrote:Meanwhile I was doing my job which happened to involve, in one instance, a reconnaissance plane (KC135R) in a program at the time called "Briar Patch". I had pretty much seen enough to know that we were losing people in these ... ferret missions ... two planes crashed while I was there, mainly due to the gale force winds and zero visibility. I figured this was getting to be a dangerous place, and that was on the ground. But others were being lost too, rather consistently being shot down. I was in contact with Dr. Brown at the time and he was especially upset over the fact that planes and crews were being taken out and that it usually happened while everyone was listening to the communications but no one could do anything about it or effect a rescue. I could tell that he was greatly bothered by this because he felt that they were.... At least sometimes ... out there doing follow up work on something that he had developed.

I'm seeing now the use of the phrase "Briar Patch," which I suddenly recognize as an expression Dr. Brown used frequently. We'd be talking about, oh, early in Morgan's career, which would have been near the end of or shortly after "The MIssing Years," maybe as early as 1967 but more likely a little later than that.

I have another message from Morgan that echoes that theme. He is speaking of Louis Tordella, who became the Deputy DNSA in 1958 -- the year that "Something Happened" (Chapter 73):

Morgan 040609 wrote:That, close on the heels of the new Deputy Director taking over at NSA ... opened doors that Dr. Brown figured were important to walk through. He was determined to speed the developments which would make these
"ferret missions" obsolete and which would save lives.


So if the satellite program was intended in part to replace the original "ferret missions," I think we're beginning to see Townsend Brown in the middle or all that.

rose wrote:I just think it's so curious that a satellite supposed meant only to focus on earthly eavesdropping would have a name like Galactic Radiation and Background. I guess SRAB was too hard to pronounce.


What would the "S" have stood for? Solar? Surveillance?

Not that it matters, either way your point is well taken. Galactic, indeed. Does that tell us something about the "secret" purpose wrapped up in this highly "classified" project??

--PS
Paul Schatzkin
aka "The Perfesser"
"At some point we have to deal with the facts, not what we want to believe is true." -- Jack Bauer
Paul S.
Sr. Rabbit Chaser
 
Posts: 1362
Joined: Thu Mar 17, 2005 1:11 pm
Location: Psych Ward

Re: The Missing Years

Postby Rose » Fri Aug 08, 2008 2:25 am

Ike was particularly anxious to get the satellites into the air after Francis Gary Powers was shot down in 1960. I think the perception all around was that they would save many lives.

Ferret missions sound like fox and hounds missions, in which pilots intentionally fly over another nations airspace so that we can observe what comes up in return: antiaircraft radar locks on and jammers start jamming....all the peices on the EW chessboard move at the same time.

The mention of Gale force winds makes me think Morgan was flying out of Adak, Alaska then. Not much to be found about the theater of operations, though:

Briar Patch CIA-sponsord sub-version of Rivet Stand, KC-135A / KC-135R (I) '55-3121', '59-1465', modified for ELINT missions, 1967/1969 ?, modified under Big Safari

Big Safari Conversion program for rapid fielding of various specially modified C-130, C-135, RPVs, and other aircraft, 1950s-today

Rivet Stand
was Speed Light, also Garlic Salt and Briar Patch, 3 KC-135A '55-3121', '59-1465', '59-1514', all 1967 to KC-135R (I), 1964-12/1969, modified under Big Safari

http://www.designation-systems.net/usmilav/names/b.html

rose
Strange travel suggestions are dancing lessons from god.
Rose
Senior Cadet
 
Posts: 297
Joined: Sun May 25, 2008 4:56 pm

Re: The Missing Years

Postby Rose » Fri Aug 08, 2008 3:03 am

This provides some interesting back ground for the missing years. i haven't finished it, but I'm going off line soon:

Many intelligence analysts considered ELINT next to
useless. One prominent CIA operations officer said that
his clandestine service considered ELINT the only five-
letter cuss word, that he viewed ELINT as worthless,
and that only agents could be relied on for worthwhile
information.

ELINT was a passive, rudimentary means of intel-
ligence collection. It involved getting a radio receiver
and recorder within line of sight of Soviet radar or other
sources of important noncommunications signals. From
radio direction finding and the recordings, one could
determine the radar’s general location and the signal’s
radio frequency, pulse rate, and pulse width. From
these signal parameters, an analyst could then estimate
the radar’s performance, but not with great accuracy
or certainty. Most Soviet radar, however, was well be-
yond the reach of ELINT.

This was the scene at the end of 1959, when I was a
new engineer assigned to the CIA’s Office of Scientific
Intelligence (OSI). I was soon cleared into the Oxcart
project and also into the stealth aspect

more at: http://www.tbp.org/pages/Publications/B ... Poteat.pdf

Engineering in the CIA:
ELINT, Stealth, and Beginnings of Information Warfare
Strange travel suggestions are dancing lessons from god.
Rose
Senior Cadet
 
Posts: 297
Joined: Sun May 25, 2008 4:56 pm

Re: The Missing Years

Postby grinder » Fri Aug 08, 2008 6:59 am

So Paul,

Morgan was involved in " ferret missions" then/ I have heard about those. Some government official said that no one ever died on those missions but I have been told ( and since have read the proof) that many lives have been lost and not all by accident. The Communist Chinese and then Russians especially were good about shooting down those unarmed planes. Am I right?

I would wonder why Morgan would be there doing those flights. Early satellite communications but what would that have to do with ferret missions. I can see why Morgan might be there maybe as a linguist ... If they were speaking Russian. But he had to be doing more than just translating don't you think?

And you are right. By watching what Morgan is doing you can sure get a good look at what Dr. Brown was doing and it sounds like Dr. Brown is right in the middle of things. When was this? can you tell us?

I just wondered how long Morgan had been working for Dr. Brown and how he ends up being on those flights.

Did Linda ever know that Morgan was doing this? Or even a more telling question, has Linda ever seen that communication you just shared with us?

The reason I asked is that I have pretty much figured all of this happened after Morgan and Linda said goodbye in San Francisco. ( used to live there and I loved and could picture that goodbye scene and the slow motorcycle ride through Golden Gate Park.)

But then I got the impression that Morgan pretty much dropped out of Lindas life, but not out of Dr. Browns. How hard might that be now to learn about now ... that he walked out of her life but not out of her fathers. Ouch.

And how do you end up taking rides on a ferret mission? Connections I would guess. Caroline connections I would guess again.

grinder
grinder
Senior Officer
 
Posts: 694
Joined: Wed Apr 05, 2006 6:20 am

Re: The Missing Years

Postby Paul S. » Fri Aug 08, 2008 3:56 pm

grinder, hi, nice to hear from you... been a while...

grinder wrote:Morgan was involved in " ferret missions" then/ I have heard about those. Some government official said that no one ever died on those missions but I have been told ( and since have read the proof) that many lives have been lost and not all by accident. The Communist Chinese and then Russians especially were good about shooting down those unarmed planes. Am I right?

Apparently, that was the party line, and like most party lines, it was not altogether factual. The way Morgan put it to me:

Morgan-040609 wrote:Dr. Edward Teller by the way, eventually was quoted as saying that "No lives were lost during the "Cold War". Daaaah ..... coulda fooled me.

Interesting that the quote would come from Teller. I'm sure he's not the only one, though.

I would wonder why Morgan would be there doing those flights. Early satellite communications but what would that have to do with ferret missions. I can see why Morgan might be there maybe as a linguist ... If they were speaking Russian. But he had to be doing more than just translating don't you think?

I don't think Morgan was actually involved in the flights. Again, here's what he said in that undated letter from the spring of '04 that mentions "Briar Patch:"

Morgan wrote:Meanwhile I was doing my job which happened to involve, in one instance, a reconnaissance plane (KC135R) in a program at the time called "Briar Patch". I had pretty much seen enough to know that we were losing people in these ... ferret missions ... two planes crashed while I was there, mainly due to the gale force winds and zero visibility. I figured this was getting to be a dangerous place, and that was on the ground. But others were being lost too, rather consistently being shot down. I was in contact with Dr. Brown at the time and he was especially upset over the fact that planes and crews were being taken out and that it usually happened while everyone was listening to the communications but no one could do anything about it or effect a rescue. I could tell that he was greatly bothered by this because he felt that they were.... At least sometimes ... out there doing follow up work on something that he had developed.

Judging from his statement "and that was on the ground," I surmise that he was not in the air, but performing in a support capacity on the ground somewhere. And I don't recall now the specific reference, but I do remember something about one of his earliest assignments being in some place really cold, Alaska or some such, where he was monitoring communications. That would have been late 1967 or early 1968, near as I can figure.

And you are right. By watching what Morgan is doing you can sure get a good look at what Dr. Brown was doing and it sounds like Dr. Brown is right in the middle of things. When was this? can you tell us?

I'll have to bone up on my history of the ferret missions. I gather they were gradually phased out as satellite surveillance was phased in. First GRAB was 1960.

I just wondered how long Morgan had been working for Dr. Brown and how he ends up being on those flights.

I don't think he was on the flights, but don't hold me 100% to that.

Did Linda ever know that Morgan was doing this? Or even a more telling question, has Linda ever seen that communication you just shared with us?

She has seen some of this specific correspondence, and I'm pretty sure she was familiar with the "ferret missions" business one way or another.

The reason I asked is that I have pretty much figured all of this happened after Morgan and Linda said goodbye in San Francisco. ( used to live there and I loved and could picture that goodbye scene and the slow motorcycle ride through Golden Gate Park.)

Of that much I'm fairly certain as well. That was right at the end of his "boot camp training" period, so it stands to reason that something whatever role he had in the remaining ferret missions would have been shortly after that. The words "first assignment" sound vaguely familiar, but I'm not sure the exact keywords I need now to find that particular missive.

But then I got the impression that Morgan pretty much dropped out of Lindas life, but not out of Dr. Browns. How hard might that be now to learn about now ... that he walked out of her life but not out of her fathers. Ouch.

Hence "there are things she needs not to know...."

And how do you end up taking rides on a ferret mission? Connections I would guess. Caroline connections I would guess again.

One way or another, we can be fairly certain that was a factor, too.

Now, come back with me to this idea: if there's an agency that monitors extra-terrestrial traffic, it would surely be the NRO. How does the Caroline Group fit into that scenario (if it all) ?

--PS
Paul Schatzkin
aka "The Perfesser"
"At some point we have to deal with the facts, not what we want to believe is true." -- Jack Bauer
Paul S.
Sr. Rabbit Chaser
 
Posts: 1362
Joined: Thu Mar 17, 2005 1:11 pm
Location: Psych Ward

Re: The Missing Years

Postby grinder » Fri Aug 08, 2008 4:53 pm

Hey Paul, thanks for the hello.

You sure have covered alot of ground.

Just in reading things here and there I am struck with these observations. Please correct my timelines if I am off but this is how I see it.

You have been told that Dr. Brown was involved in some sort of " tunnel diode" A special sort of " tunnel diode" From other sources you have been told that when the spy satellites were developed it was because they needed a " higher platform" to " bounce signals off of" FROM SUBMARINES.

When the NRO comes into existance it is hand in hand with submarine operations. The satellites became the " eyes" for all of those subs. They couldn't actually even operate today without those birds up there.

And of course when you are developing a system like that the big game is keeping what you have secure from the other guys and at the same time figuring out how much they know and what THEY have. Thats what I see happening with those ferret missions. Just like Rose said ... half of the game would be waiting for the ground enemy stations to key up on you and then you get all kinds of information from that.

The Russians of course moved things fairly well inland so the only way you could do it with a ferret mission would be to cross their borders, risk getting shot down because that was really nasty then. Nobody would come to get you because you were not supposed to be there in the first place. So if crews were being lost I can imagine that Dr. Brown wanted the shift to satellite snooping as quickly as possible. Seems that the timelines fit.

I understand that when crews were lost their families were simply sent messages that said that they had died in a " training excercise". I guess alot of things happened like that during the Cold war because nobody would admit that anybody was actually shooting at anybody,

Seems to me that with Roses help here you have been able to prove out some things that Morgan has told you. One thing at a time I guess huh. grinder
grinder
Senior Officer
 
Posts: 694
Joined: Wed Apr 05, 2006 6:20 am

Re: The Missing Years

Postby Rose » Fri Aug 08, 2008 5:34 pm

i'm browsing a website albumn from SpyCruise...a 2002 theme holiday offered by a cruise line. Here is another person who could probably tell us a lot, but wouldn't:

Current AFIO President, Eugene Poteat, introduced himself in his evening SpyCruise presentation as an engineer and physicist who hadn’t heard of the CIA until shortly before his employment by The Agency. His career involved work on the U-2 and other highflying top-secret surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft. He participated in the development of spy satellites from early days of that operational platform. The orbiting eyes in the sky became a far superior data gathering stable of workhorses (quantitatively speaking) then the manned-aircraft programs with their inherent operational limitations.

Not limited to working in the confines of a laboratory, Poteat now expresses heartfelt sentiment that he shall be happy to never ride in a submarine again. He asserts, however, that each and every one of our nation’s submariners is a hero in his mind. Some of Poteat’s submarine stories involve still sensitive information, and may never be told.


http://www.july4.org/SpyCruise/day4.htm

And on a different page, there is this photo caption:

His collar already open, Gene is about to “dis-clothes” to the entire SpyCruise audience the disguise he chose for servicing "Operation Briarpatch" (a cold-war Agency ELINT operation in the Baltic). Rumors that “this compulsion is a continuing problem” are unconfirmed.


http://www.july4.org/SpyCruise/pics4.htm

A nudist in the Baltic? He Must have been trained by TTB!

rose
Strange travel suggestions are dancing lessons from god.
Rose
Senior Cadet
 
Posts: 297
Joined: Sun May 25, 2008 4:56 pm

Re: The Missing Years

Postby Mikado14 » Fri Aug 08, 2008 6:41 pm

Rose wrote:This was the scene at the end of 1959, when I was a
new engineer assigned to the CIA’s Office of Scientific
Intelligence (OSI). I was soon cleared into the Oxcart
project and also into the stealth aspect

more at: http://www.tbp.org/pages/Publications/B ... Poteat.pdf

Engineering in the CIA:
ELINT, Stealth, and Beginnings of Information Warfare


When you were a young engineer. What type? oh yeah, avionics was your specialty? ...<g>

Mikado
There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in your philosophy
Mikado14
Mr. Nice Guy
 
Posts: 2343
Joined: Thu Aug 10, 2006 1:49 pm
Location: Somewhere in Pennsy

Re: The Missing Years

Postby htmagic » Fri Aug 08, 2008 6:57 pm

Paul S. wrote:And I don't recall now the specific reference, but I do remember something about one of his earliest assignments being in some place really cold, Alaska or some such, where he was monitoring communications. That would have been late 1967 or early 1968, near as I can figure.

Paul,

That reminds me of the movie Ice Station Zebra, where a film canister from a spy satellite parachutes into the Artic and the Americans and Soviets go after it. Ice Station Zebra was set in the Cold War era several years earlier and It is loosely based upon Alistair MacLean's 1963 novel of the same name. It came out in 1968 just around the time Morgan was doing his assignment.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ice_Station_Zebra
I wonder if Morgan saw this movie and thought "deja vu"?

This movie also introduced the Skyhook concept and it was interesting to see this on the recent Dark Knight movie with Batman.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skyhook
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fulton_surface-to-air_recovery_system

The GRAB satellites were used to capture Soviet radar signals whereas the Corona (Keyhole) satellites were the first imaging spy satellites. The first one was launched in June 1959.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Key_Hole


MagicBill
Speeding through the Universe, thinking is the best way to travel ...
htmagic
Senior Officer
 
Posts: 661
Joined: Tue Apr 08, 2008 7:46 pm
Location: People's Republic of Maryland

Next

Return to Defying Gravity: The Second Draft

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest