Thursday, September 1, 2016

The name is Goldbranson....Colonel Goldbranson


           Kudos to Brad Sparks again for taking the time to critically analyze my blog articles on Colonel Carl E. Goldbranson and his role in the UFO summer of 1947.

           Since one of the big sticking points for Brad’s critique is Goldbranson’s rank and service in July of 1947, I did further research along these lines to clear up the matter once and for all. 

           So let’s start with which 1947 military service Goldbranson was really in – was it the US Army or the Army Air Force? The truth of the matter is neither. Goldbranson does not show up in the combined Army/Army Air Force 1948 official register (dated I January 1948 covering the year 1947) nor in any of the subsequent yearly Army or Air Force official registers, until his death in 1957.

            Digging deeper, I found out that Goldbranson first shows up in the 1943 National Guard register as he was a member of the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division, the first American division deployed to Europe during the war. The 34th had three infantry regiments, the 133rd, 135th, and 168th Infantry regiments and Goldbranson served with the 168th (Iowa National Guard) before assuming his well-documented Joint Security Control duties in 1943.

            When Goldbranson left active duty in January, 1946, we know from the following October, 1946 newspaper article where he served next and exactly what rank he held:

            The article clearly states that he was made a full Colonel when appointed as the Chief of Staff of the 34th division, the article further pointing out that he was previously ranked a Lieutenant Colonel when he separated from active duty in January 1946.  Sparks made the comment that sometimes newspaper reports use the rank of Colonel when describing someone who is just a Lieutenant Colonel, but that is not the case in this article.

              The article clearly mentions Goldbranson’s previous lower rank and his current higher rank. In addition, it specifically denotes another service member’s (Roger M. Minkel) distinct lower rank of Lieutenant Colonel. So for the record, it is beyond a shadow of a doubt that Goldbranson was officially a full Colonel in the Iowa National Guard, starting in October of 1946.
            We know from the July 21, 1947 flying saucer memo that Goldbranson is no longer in Iowa but in Washington serving in some capacity with the War Department General Staff, Intelligence Division. But Goldbranson’s name does not appear in the official Army/Army Air Force officer combined register for 1947. So which official register would he have shown up in? Presumably, in the 1947 National Guard register, as I will soon show why.

           Sparks has doubts that Goldbranson retained his full Colonel rank when back on active duty in July 1947. If we pay close attention to the following August 20, 1947 newspaper article, it describes Colonel Goldbranson's visit to Des Moines from Washington to “attend camp” after which he would return back to Washington.

              Goldbranson’s attendance is at a National Guard camp, not a Boy Scout or recreational summer camp. Goldbranson, although on duty with the War Department General Staff, Intelligence Division, was in fact still an Iowa National Guard member, and still attending to his National Guard duties before returning back to Washington. It makes zero sense that he would have somehow gotten demoted to Lieutenant Colonel under these circumstances. 

            I unfortunately could not locate a copy of the 1947 National Guard registry that would unequivocally show Goldbranson’s National Guard status in 1947, but all the clues clearly point in that direction. 

           But let’s fast forward to 1957 when Goldbranson died and work our way back in time to 1947. From his obituary we find some very interesting information. Before he died, Goldbranson was serving as the Director of Plans, Air Force headquarters in the Pentagon. Just prior to this Pentagon duty, Goldbranson was serving as the Commandant of the Indianapolis Air Reserve Center, and prior to that was with the Planning Division of the headquarters of the European Command. 

            The most revealing information though is that Goldbranson was transferred from the US Army to the US Air Force in 1948 as a Strategic Planner in the War Plans division. The Army to Air Force transfer is further clarified by a November 18, 1955 article that confirms he was a Strategic Planner in the War Plans division from 1948 till 1952.


                These newspaper articles confirm that Goldbranson moved from the Army to the Air Force in 1948, but oddly enough Goldbranson again doesn’t appear in any of the official Air Force officer registries from 1948 to 1957.

                Where he does show up is in the Air National Guard registries for those years. In other words, Goldbranson in reality, transferred from the Army National Guard to the Air National Guard in 1948 and remained there for the rest of his Air Force related career. Goldbranson having achieved his full Colonel rank in the Army National Guard in October of 1946 would retain that rank while on active duty with the War Department in 1947 and would also retain that rank upon his transfer to the Air National Guard a year later.

             So although this new research data has cleared up any mystery regarding Goldbranson’s rank and service, we must still ascertain what exactly his role was at the War Department General Staff, Intelligence Division and while in that role, could he have also been a member of Joint Security Control or any other deception organizations. Sparks argues that Goldbranson serving on the War Department Intelligence Division staff would have precluded Goldbranson from working in Joint Security Control. Let’s explore this train of thought further.

            JSC’s May 1947 charter authorized a total of 3 Army Colonels as follows:
Executive Section
1 Army Colonel (full time)
1 Army Air Force Colonel (pulling double duty in the Special Section)
Security Section
1 Army Colonel (full time)
Special Section
1 Army Colonel (part time)

             Based on his July 1947 rank and service, Goldbranson could have filled the Army Colonel slot in the Executive Section, or the Army Colonel slot in the Security Section or as the Army Colonel slot in the Special Section (the deception section). 

           Well that leaves a lot to chance so I looked in my records for additional data to help narrow things down. I found from a 2013 trip to the National Archives, the weekly Joint Security Control duty rosters for the period of January to May 1947.

          The duty rosters revealed the names of two JSC Army Colonels and one JSC Army Air Force Colonel active during this time period:

James K. Cockrell
Alexander H. Campbell
Willard Van D. Brown
Army Air Force

          Looking at the 1946 Joint Security Control personnel roster we see something interesting related to two of these names. Both Cockrell from the Army and Brown from the Army Air Force were in the Executive Section of Joint Security Control.

            If Colonels Cockrell and Brown continued in those same executive section roles in 1947,then the following pieces of the JSC 1947 staff puzzle can be filled in:

Executive Section
1 Army Colonel (full time)
1 Air Force Colonel (pulling double duty in the Special Section)
Security Section
1 Army Colonel (full time)

Special Section
1 Army Colonel (part time)

         Colonel Willard Van D. Brown as the Army Air Force Colonel in the Executive Section would also pull double duty in the Special Section just as the charter dictated. That left just two Army Colonel vacancies to fill. 

         Interestingly, I found the following reference to Colonel Alexander H. Campbell in the November-December 1947 edition of the Coastal Artillery Corps journal as he had served in the CAC. It places Campbell in Joint Security Control and specifically in the Security Section. That left only one Colonel slot to fill - that of the part time Special Section Colonel tasked with deception operations.

Executive Section
1 Army Colonel (full time)
1 Air Force Colonel (pulling double duty in the Special Section)
Security Section
1 Army Colonel (full time)
Special Section
1 Army Colonel (part time)

        This is where the paper trail from the National Archives ends. No other Colonel is mentioned as affiliated with Joint Security Control during the January through May 1947 timeframe. I propose that Colonel Carl E. Goldbranson, US Army is the missing Colonel. It was in actuality his old job at Joint Security Control during WW2 in the Special Section of Joint Security Control, tasked with deception operations.

       So although my earlier assertions were based on Goldbranson having been in the Army Air Force, I now stand corrected based on the more detailed information I have found, but the end conclusion has not changed, I believe that Goldbranson was back in deception in 1947, back in Joint Security Control.

        Of course all of this puzzle piecing together could be avoided entirely if we had a simple 1947 Joint Security Control personnel roster like we do for 1946, but the National Archives did not yield that secret.

        The 1947 JSC charter also explicitly states that: “The personnel of both the Army and Navy parts of the Special Section, due to the fact that they also serve in a dual capacity, the Army under the Director of Plans and Operations, War Department General Staff and the Navy personnel under the Deputy Chief of Naval Operations, received instructions from the respective War and Navy Department agencies.”

           The Director of Plans and Operations in 1947 was General Lauris Norstad and his organization was specifically charged with deception duties for the War Department. It is completely conceivable that Colonel Goldbranson served in this dual role, part time in the War Department General Staff, Intelligence Division and the other part of his time in Joint Security Control receiving directions from General Norstad. The charter specifically states that the Special Section Army Colonel was a part time position.
               Finding as Sparks correctly points out a document that clearly shows Goldbranson on Joint Security Control in 1947 would put this matter to rest. However, until that document is found, we have to put our best detective hat on and consider both the possibility as well as the “plausibility” that Goldbranson’s involvement in the UFO summer of 1947 may not be as innocuous as Sparks would like you to believe. 

               Finally I would like to address Spark’s statements that “Carrion's thesis is a classic unfalsifiable and untestable hypothesis.  It is also, on the flip side of the coin, unprovable. Carrion's theory is 'The UFO is a lovely deception' and anything inconsistent with that notion is just part of the deception, or more of it.  There is no set of contrary evidence for Carrion's scenario that cannot be explained away by a deeper 'strategic deception.'  If Carrion denies that his thesis is rigged to be immune to disproof then he should state what conceivable evidence could ever disprove it.”
             I beg to differ and I will state exactly what evidence could disprove it. The Human Deception Hypothesis that proposes that the UFO wave of 1947 was the product of US Strategic Deception is completely falsifiable. If the 1946 to 1947 - Joint Security Control, Director of Planning and Operations, and Army Air Force Deception operations are declassified in their entirety, then they provide the necessary evidence for proving or disproving the hypothesis. 

            So I suggest that any researcher who wants to uncover the truth of this matter, to please join me in submitting FOIA requests for all the War Department and Joint Chiefs of Staff deception plans from 1946 to 1947. The records do exist but will need to be declassified.

            Yes, there is more work that needs to be done to uncover Goldbranson’s secrets from the summer of 1947 and I will continue to pursue those secrets relentlessly until the truth, whatever that may ultimately be, is unequivocally revealed.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

FOIA Pete’s Sake – There’s Roswell Gold in dem Hills!

     I recently pointed out the connection between Carl E. Goldbranson, one of the principal deception planners in the United States and the UFO events of 1947 when Goldbranson’s name was inadvertently disclosed in internal FBI memos. The deception organization that Goldbranson had a long time affiliation with (since 1943) was known as Joint Security Control (JSC) and was subordinate to the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

     So what does this have to do with Roswell? I will get to that, but first a short history lesson on the origins of Joint Security Control.

     In 1942 when the allies were planning for Operation Torch - the British-American invasion of French North Africa, Fleet Admiral Ernest Joseph King overheard officers at a cocktail party discussing the Torch top secret invasion plans. When Admiral King subsequently found out from his Operations Intelligence Officer Captain George C. Dyer, that 61 persons knew of the plans, King blew a gasket. With such a large number of personnel “in the know”, Torch’s operational security was put at risk.

     To mitigate future operational risks, Admiral King in coordination with his Army counterpart General George C. Marshall on the Joint Chiefs of Staff, set up Joint Security Control to prevent such lapses in operational security and made Captain Dyer its first coordinator.

     JSC was given broad authority in its original charter and in addition to planning and implementing strategic deception, one of its other primary tasks was to prevent information of military value from falling into the hands of the enemy. This prime directive can be seen in the JSC 1943 charter and reiterated in every revision all the way up to the JSC May 1947 charter, just two months shy of the Roswell incident.

     Now let’s dwell on the phrase “information of military value” for a bit. If an extraterrestrial space craft, as Roswell ET proponents believe, crashed on US soil in 1947, was recovered by the Army Air Force and a grand cover-up initiated, then part of the rationale for covering it up would be to maintain exclusive ownership over this technological bonanza. The Cold War was just heating up and the US for damn sure would not want the Russians to have this technology. And which agency just happened to be tasked with keeping such important technology out of the hands of the Soviet Union? Joint Security Control.

     Now I would think that the most fervent proponents of the 1947 crash of a UFO near Roswell would be chomping at the bit to explore this new angle. Many of them filled up the FOIA inboxes of the US Air Force, the CIA, the NSA, and every other 3 letter agency in Washington with requests for MJ-12 documents, the alleged organization that initiated the UFO cover up. But unlike the fictional MJ-12, an organization already existed in 1947 to prevent inadvertent disclosure of important military information – Joint Security Control.

     So I challenge all who want to prove that Roswell was an alien event to FOIA away for the real organization that would have protected the Roswell secrets - an organization for which real records exist, somewhere in the bowels of a classified Government archive. FOIA for all of the records of Joint Security Control – the real “MJ-12” - not the fake one that sent more than one Ufologist down a deep dark rabbit hole to nowhere.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

All is not as it seems in Lemuria

Update Note: Kevin Randle clarified on his blog that it was Brad Sparks who wrote the original post. I have updated my article and replaced any reference to Kevin Randle with Brad Sparks.

Brad Sparks responded to my most recent blog article regarding Colonel Carl E. Goldbranson’s involvement in 1947 UFO events by pointing out what he considers flaws in my analysis.

First, I commend Sparks for taking the time to critically read and analyze the article. I am incorporating portions of Sparks' blog entry to make it easy for you to follow his critiques and my responses.

Sparks starts by stating that:

“His 'proof" is what is now his central figure in the entire plot, a ‘Col.’ Carl Goldbranson, and an FBI memo of July 21, 1947, released decades ago.  But Carrion has so far failed to prove that Goldbranson did anything more than ask the FBI to investigate a notorious character who supposedly knew the origin of flying saucers and whose location and timing supposedly coincided with certain incidents in early July 1947.  That's what's in the FBI memo.”
          I will first point out that the July 21st memo was not the first correspondence sent to the FBI on this matter. An earlier memorandum dated July 16, 1947 on the exact same matter was sent from the War Department General Staff to the FBI. Of interest is how generic the July 16, 1947 correspondence is with no named personnel representing either organization. It is simply addressed to FBI, from WDGS, US Branch and Colonel Goldbranson is never mentioned.

      Both the unsigned telegram and the flying saucer reports over Wisconsin referenced were included as attachments:

      The July 21, 1947 memorandum however is internal FBI correspondence addressed to the FBI’s D. M. Ladd from E. G. Fitch. It relays a message from S. W. Reynolds from Colonel Carl Goldbranson of the Intelligence Division of the War Department General Staff where Goldbranson was repeating verbatim the same request from the July 16, 1946 memorandum.

      If you reference the July 16 memo and the July 5th unsigned telegram, both agree that the telegram was addressed to HQ (AAF) Army Air Force which indeed received it on July 9th. Yet the July 21st memorandum, in the very first paragraph states, that it was the War Department that received the telegram. As the US Air Force did not become a separate service till later in the year and the Army Air Force was part of the War Department, no one would see this as unusual.

Sparks however makes the following argument:

“Carrion has failed even to prove that Goldbranson was continuing his wartime deception duties 2 years after the war, in peacetime, in the face of his FBI memo placing Goldbranson in the wrong agency (Army Intelligence), not on the deception staff (Joint Chiefs).”
      And further in his article Sparks states:
“But Col. Goldbranson is described by the FBI as with ARMY -- "Intelligence Division of the War Department" -- NOT the AAF, and NOT the Joint Security Control of the JCS (Joint Chiefs of Staff), in charge of deception planning and possibly operations.”
      First, Goldbranson was not in the wrong agency as there was no issue with him maintaining a dual role in the War Department Intelligence Division as well as in Joint Security Control. In fact that was exactly how Joint Security Control had always been run where members wore two different hats, their normal intelligence hat and their Joint Security Control hat. You can see this reflected in the following order designating General Stephen J. Chamberlin who was already the Director of Intelligence, War Department General Staff as a Joint Security Control member. Chamberlin did not give up his WDGS DOI role when he joined Joint Security Control.

      As for whether Goldbranson was a member of Joint Security Control in July of 1947, we can rely on Thaddeus Holt’s account of Goldbranson’s deception career after the war in his groundbreaking book The Deceivers, considered by military scholars to be the bible on WW2 deception history:
“Goldbranson who had a brief return to civilian life after the war, returned to the service, this time in the Air Force, and was evidently again engaged in deception activity for the rest of his career. By December of 1948 he was a full colonel, assigned at that time to the “Special Plans Section” of the Strategy Branch, Headquarters U.S. Air Force. He died in 1957.”[vi]
      Although Holt does not explicitly state that Goldbranson rejoined Joint Security Control, he does explicitly state that he had both a brief return to civilian life followed by a return to the service where he served in the Air Force. Since the Air Force did not become a separate service until September 18, 1947, it is certain that in July 1947 when Goldbranson was with the War Department General Staff, he was back in the Army (perhaps the Army Air Force) before transferring to the US Air Force sometime after it became a separate service. What is beyond doubt, based on Holt’s authority, is that Goldbranson was engaged in deception.
      We know that Joint Security Control received a revised charter in May of 1947 and if Goldbranson was engaged in deception as Holt’s tell us after his return to the service, there were three possible organizations he could have served with: on General Lauris Norstad’s staff (Director of Plans and Operations) that was charged with deception duties for the War Department, on a reorganized Joint Security Control (where he could wear two hats) and which was subordinate to the Joint Chiefs, or on an Army Air Force deception staff proposed by General George C. McDonald in this memo. We know that the first two deception organizations were in existence when Goldbranson was in Washington, but as the McDonald memo is undated, it is not certain when the Army Air Force/Air Force organization was initiated.
      Based on Goldbranson’s long WW2 deception career where he was a member of the Special Section of Joint Security Control, specifically charged with deception as shown in the following 1944 document, the most logical place for him to continue his deception duties in 1947 was in Joint Security Control.


Sparks then had the following to say:

“Did the FBI get this wrong?  Did the FBI Liaison Agent S. Wesley Reynolds who knew all the top intelligence generals and officers in the military, CIG and State Dept just not know who Col. Goldbranson was? Did Goldbranson lie to the FBI about who he worked for?  Maybe, but Carrion needs to prove it. 
Right now, Carrion has not even proved that his crucial proof, Goldbranson, even worked on deception operations in 1947.  Maybe he did, but no such proof is given, it's just hinted at, and insinuated, Goldbranson "would" have been perfect to "fill that billet."  But did he?  
Carrion makes a crucial mistake in misreading Goldbranson's rank as of mid-1947 (his source seems to say G was a Lt. Col. and not full Colonel until December 1948).  This means Carrion has the wrong guy on the wrong staff of Joint Security Control even by his own argument.”
      So Sparks poses two arguments here. First, how could S. W. Reynolds not know that Goldbranson was a deception guy and secondly, that Goldbranson had the wrong rank to be the senior member of Joint Security Control’s special section.
      The first argument is easily dispensed. The fact that a War Department intelligence officer was also wearing a separate hat on Joint Security Control was classified information as General Chamberlin’s orders and the 1944 Joint Security Control personnel roster show. Reynolds at the FBI would not have a need to know this and indeed Joint Security Control operated on the premise that it would only liaise with only one or possibly two people at the top of any civilian or military agency. For the FBI that would have been J. Edgar Hoover and not S. W. Reynolds. This limited liaison is clearly spelled out in all of Joint Security Control’s charters.
      The rank argument I can dispel without declassified documents. The following October 23, 1946 newspaper clipping shows Goldbranson named as the Chief of Staff with the 34th Division of the Iowa National Guard. This was during his “brief” return to civilian life. Notice that he was appointed with the rank of Colonel. 

      The following January 24, 1947 newspaper clipping shows that he was still with the 34th with the rank of Colonel.

      When he returned to the service full time sometime between January and July 1947 he kept his designated rank of Colonel as shown in this August 20th, 1947 newspaper clipping.

      Now on to other issues Sparks has taken issue with:
“And it's late in the game, long after the 1947 saucer flap ended on about July 10, with Goldbranson's response very slow and lackadaisical for something supposed to be part of some hush-hush strategic deception operation.  Shouldn't Goldbranson have been doing "this" (whatever "hands dirty" stuff it's supposed to be) before the flap, before, say Kenneth Arnold?”
      In my opinion, this is the weakest of his arguments. The only reason we know of Goldbranson in the first place is because of declassified internal FBI memorandum released unilaterally by the FBI. In other words, it was the FBI that leaked Goldbranson’s name twice, once back in 1947 by mentioning him in internal memos, not knowing his then deception role, and in the modern era by declassifying these memos.
      If Goldbranson was executing a strategic deception plan in 1947, we cannot and would not know its scope and breadth based on the smallest of peeks afforded by the very few FBI memos that mention Goldbranson’s involvement. Remember that the July 16, 1947 memo asking for FBI assistance did not name Goldbranson but the July 21st one did because it was an internal FBI memo.
      If a strategic deception was initiated starting with Kenneth Arnold, then those deception plans are hidden away where the sun never shines and where they will stay perpetually classified. The fact is that we have very sparse documentation on Joint Security Control in the postwar era including absolutely zero declassified deception plans from 1946 onwards. This was confirmed by military deception scholars who were relieved that I could provide them with the very few postwar Joint Security Control files I found in the National Archives. These scholars had been searching high and low through numerous government and agency sources for Joint Security Control files and had come up empty handed – even going so far as designating Joint Security Control as the “ghost organization”.
      Now on to the Shaver mystery where Sparks argues that:
“Carrion apparently missed the fact that it was the infamous Richard Shaver whose name got through the document censors in one place of the FBI memo.  Yes, the Richard Shaver of the lunatic Shaver Mysteries, full of "deros" "deranged robots" who were not actually robots, and Lemuria tales.”
But Goldbranson did not even ask the FBI to perpetrate any deception!  How is asking the FBI to investigate someone amount to carrying out a deception??  Does any of this deceive the Soviet intelligence agencies?  And into believing what?  That a marginal character like Richard Shaver of the Shaver Mystery stories and the "truth" about underground worlds and Lemuria, was a credible bearer of intelligence about flying saucers being US secret weapons?  The Kremlin halls would have been shaking with laughter at such "capitalist" insanity. 
Carrion charges that Goldbranson was "getting his hands dirty in the UFO controversy of 1947" and "had no reason to be involved unless he was actively promoting a deception plan."  Again, how is asking the FBI to investigate a crackpot amount to "actively promoting a deception plan" against the USSR??  How is asking for investigation a getting of one's "hands dirty"?  Seems like a fair-minded gathering of information, that's all.  
Carrion evidently has not figured out that Shaver's name and his location at "Lily Lake" are apparently redacted from the FBI memo of July 21, 1947, cited by Carrion as his bombshell "proof" that UFO's in 1947 were a US strategic deception against the USSR.  The "Shaver" name appears in one place Carrion seems to have overlooked, which the FBI reviewers let slip through the censorship.  If Carrion does know it was Shaver, it is odd that he would withhold discussion of that vital and discrediting point.”
      No, I did not miss Shaver’s involvement but have reserved explaining why Goldbranson asked the FBI to investigate Shaver in my upcoming book, which by the way will be free of charge, lest I am accused of trying to profit from any of this fool’s journey.
      Now Sparks also pointed out that:
“At best, if Goldbranson was indeed working in some deception activity, then this seems to be a cover-one's-bases effort to make sure Shaver wasn't a Soviet deception against us through Shaver's promotion of cuckoo saucer-like tales -- not a strategic deception but mere harassing disinformation to keep our counterintelligence agencies busy chasing after windmills.”
      That is a good point and well taken, except for the fact that the US already knew what the Soviet deception capabilities were at this time as revealed in this June, 1947 70-page Top Secret report. I will summarize by stating that it did not involve the Soviets using science fiction to stir up trouble.

      Finally Sparks states that “Carrion needs much more evidence and needs to make a tighter, more logical case.” Agreed, but as you can see by how lengthy this article has become refuting Sparks' arguments, it does not do justice to this subject by any means, but my upcoming book The Roswell Deception will. Stay tuned.