Tuesday, February 18, 2014

The Plot to Kill Ed Koch

This might have been a CIA concocted threat on Koch's life, but still a fascinating story-RW

By Christopher Igalls Haugh

Ed  Koch pressed the phone to his ear, trying to make sense of what he was being told.
“Listen, my agents have gotten news that there’s a contract out on your life,” CIA Director George H.W. Bush told the New York congressman. “I’m sorry, Ed. There’s nothing I can do about it.”
It was October 1976, and Koch—a four-term member of Congress who would later serve three terms as the mayor of New York—was sitting in his office in Lower Manhattan as the future president explained the threat against Koch’s life. It seemed, Bush said, that Koch’s efforts to cut off $3 million in U.S. military aid to the Uruguayan government had caught the attention of the Chilean secret police, a close collaborator of the Uruguayan regime. The secret police in Chile had put a bounty on the head of the 52-year-old lawmaker. There wasn’t much the CIA could do about it, Bush told him.

“But George,” the congressman pleaded, a hint of panic rising in his throat. “What am I supposed to do?”

“Ed, be very careful,” Bush said.

Koch had every reason to take the CIA director’s warning seriously. Days earlier, on Sept. 21, a brazen assassination in Washington had shattered the myth that the political violence roiling South America wouldn’t possibly make its way to U.S. soil. The once far-fetched notion that a sitting member of Congress could also be targeted for killing was, suddenly, quite real.

Read the rest here.

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