Operation Northwoods was the code name for a set of proposals
by the Joint Chiefs of Staff in 1962 intended to create a pretext
for a war on Cuba.
The operation called for a series of false-flag terrorist attacks
by the Pentagon against US ships and aircraft,
and Cuban refugees.
Skeptics of the official account of 9/11 were quick
to point to Operation Northwoods as evidence of the intent of
US military officials to carry out false flag operations such as 9/11/01.
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Reproduces the 15-page document in the form of plain text.
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Reproduces photostats of the documents.
Publication of the Documents
Operation Northwoods was developed in secret and remained secret for
thirty-five years, being declassified in late 1997.
Following that, its contents were publicized in increments.
- November 18, 1997:
The John F. Kennedy Assassination Records Review Board
declassified about 1500 pages of previously secret military records,
including the Northwoods documents.
- November 6, 1998:
The National Security Archive published
"Appendix to Enclosure A" and "Annex to Appendix to Enclosure A"
of the Northwoods documents online.
- November 29, 1998:
CNN airs "Episode 10: Cuba" as part of its televised
Cold War documentary series.
- Late April, 2001:
James Bamford's book
"Body of Secrets" is published.
Billed as an expose on the NSA,
the book functioned primarily to highlight Operation Northwoods.
- April 30, 2001:
The National Security Archive published the Northwoods documents
online in a form that included the memoranda.
With the release of "Body of Secrets"
and the Northwoods memoranda in the spring of 2001,
mainstream media such as ABCNews.com began to publicize
the operation, just a few months before the 9/11 attack.
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Code named Operation Northwoods, the plans reportedly included the possible
assassination of Cuban émigrés, sinking boats of Cuban refugees on the high
seas, hijacking planes, blowing up a U.S. ship, and even orchestrating
violent terrorism in U.S. cities.
The plans were developed as ways to trick the American public and the
international Community into supporting a war to oust Cuba's then new leader,
Communist Fidel Castro.
Discussion of Operation Northoods continued to percolate thorough
popular culture after the 9/11 attack, sometimes drawing parallels
to other events, such as the assassination of JFK.
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This cartoon by Mack White explains Operation Northwoods and relates
it to other developments and the assassination of JFK.
curator of the Waco Holocaust Electronic Museum,
insists that the Northwoods document is a fake,
designed to implicate the Pentagon for crimes of the NSA
(National Security Agency).
She suggests that James Bamford, who has written exposes' on the NSA,
is actually a public relations flack for the agency.
His book, Body of Secrets, purports to be an expose on the NSA,
but instead exposes the murderous plan by the Pentagon.
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The reviews were well in circulation, but still fresh when 9-11 hit.
In retrospect, Northwoods seemed like an eery premonition.
I thought the release of the Northwoods revelations were indeed
a timely coincidence.
Because the Northwoods scenario seemed to fit the facts of 9-11,
many writers cited Bamford and Northwoods. I was one of them.
But there is just one problem with Northwoods.
Operation Northwoods was not written by Americans.
Put in other words, Operation Northwoods documents
were not written by the Pentagon.
They are counterfeits.
Operation Northwoods and 9/11 Misinformation
Although the Operation Northwoods documents are clearly evidence
that US military officials are capable of considering plans
involving the murder of US citizens in a false-flag operation
blaming innocent parties,
it is not evidence of how the 9/11 attack was carried out.
This distinction is lost by many 9/11 theorists who cite
Northwoods' envisioning of
substitutions of military aircraft for civilian jetliners
as evidence of plane swapping on 9/11/01.
For example, the first part of the film
highlights passages from the Northwoods documents about plane substitution,
while later parts assert, without evidence, that
the Pentagon and Twin Towers were not hit by jetliners.
Pentagon Proposed Pretexts for Cuba Invasion in 1962, Nationl Security Archive,
Media Advisory: National Archives Releases Additional Materials Reviewed by the Assassination Records Review Board, archives.gov, 11/17/97
Episode 10: Cuba, CNN.com,
page last modified: 2010-05-24