George Joannides

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George Joannides
George Joannides in 1963
George Joannides in 1963
BornGeorge Efythron Joannides
(1922-07-05)July 5, 1922
Athens, Greece
DiedMarch 9, 1990(1990-03-09) (aged 67)
Houston, Texas
Occupationintelligence officer, lawyer.
EducationCity College of New York
St. John's University School of Law, LL.B.

George Efythron Joannides (July 5, 1922 – March 9, 1990) was a Central Intelligence Agency officer who in 1963 was the chief of the Psychological Warfare branch of the agency's JMWAVE station in Miami, and in 1978 was the agency's liaison to the United States House Select Committee on Assassinations.


Joannides attended the City College of New York and St. John's University School of Law.[1] He joined the CIA in 1952. By 1963 he was chief of the Psychological Warfare branch of the Central Intelligence Agency's JM/WAVE station in Miami, with a staff of 24 and a budget of $1.5 million.[2] In that role, he was also known as "Howard", "Mr. Howard", and "Walter Newby".[3][4] Joannides directed and financed Directorio Revolucionario Estudantil (DRE), or Student Revolutionary Directorate, a group of Cuban exiles whose officers had contact with Lee Harvey Oswald in the months before the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963.[5][6][7] By some accounts, fashioned with the "plausible deniability" typical of CIA operations, the plan was designed to link Oswald to Castro's government, without disclosing the CIA's role. He left the agency in 1976 to start an immigration-law practice in Washington, DC.[1]

In 1978 the CIA summoned Joannides to serve as the agency's liaison to the United States House Select Committee on Assassinations, in specific regard to the death of President Kennedy. Washington Post reporter Jefferson Morley wrote that, "the spy withheld information about his own actions in 1963 from the congressional investigators he was supposed to be assisting. It wasn't until 2001, 38 years after Kennedy's death, that Joannides' support for the Cuban exiles, who clashed with Oswald and monitored him, came to light." [8] Joainnides retired permanently from the CIA in November 1978.[1] In July 1981 he was awarded the Career Intelligence Medal.[9]

In 2013 John R. Tunheim and Thomas E. Samoluk wrote in the Boston Herald: "There is a body of documents that the CIA is still protecting, which should be released. Relying on inaccurate representations made by the CIA in the mid-1990s, the Review Board decided that records related to a deceased CIA agent named George Joannides were not relevant to the Kennedy assassination. Subsequent work by researchers, using other records that were released by the board, demonstrates that these records should be made public."[10]

Personal life and death[edit]

In addition to speaking English, Joannides was fluent in Greek and French, and competent in Spanish. He and his wife Violet had three children, and lived in Pinecrest, Florida. In his later years, Joannides had heart problems and moved to Houston, Texas to receive medical treatment from Michael DeBakey. Joannides died on March 9, 1990, aged 67.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d Revelation 19.63 Miami New Times
  2. ^ Jefferson Morley, "What Jane Roman Said", Marquette University
  3. ^ Morley v. CIA. (2007). Appeal from the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, No. 06-5382
  4. ^ VIDEO: Withheld in Full: Episode 1 - Morley V. CIA, Mary Ferrell Foundation.
  5. ^ Scott Shane, The New York Times, 16 October 2009, C.I.A. Is Still Cagey About Oswald Mystery
  6. ^ "TILT and the "Phase Three" Story of Clare Boothe Luce (2012)". Archived from the original on 2013-11-03. Retrieved 2013-11-01.
  7. ^ Morley v. CIA. (2013). Appeal from the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, case no.1:03-cv-02545, page 2.
  8. ^ Jefferson Morley, Salon, 17 December 2003, Celebrated authors demand that the CIA come clean on JFK assassination
  9. ^ Jefferson Morley, 17 December 2012, Justice Dept. denies CIA officer was honored for JFK cover-up Archived 2013-11-27 at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ Tunheim, John R.; Samoluk, Thomas E. (November 21, 2013). "Assassination questions remain". Boston Globe.

Further reading[edit]

  • Kaiser, D. E. (2009). The road to Dallas: The assassination of John F. Kennedy. Boston: Harvard University Press. ISBN 0674039289
  • Mellen, J. (2005). A farewell to justice. Dulles, VA: Potomac Books. ISBN 1597973548
  • Russell, D. (2003). The man who knew too much. New York: Carroll & Graf. ISBN 0786712422
  • Sabato, L. J. (2013). The Kennedy half-century: The presidency, assassination, and lasting legacy of John F. Kennedy. New York: Bloomsbury. ISBN 1620402807
  • Talbot, D. (2008). Brothers: The hidden history of the Kennedy years. New York: Simon and Schuster. ISBN 1847395856
  • Waldron, L., and Hartmann, T. (2009). Ultimate sacrifice. New York: Basic Books. ISBN 0786735112

External links[edit]