"That little Kennedy, he thought he was a God." -- Allen DullesThe most important political history in many a year was published this week by HarperCollins: David Talbot's The Devil's Chessboard. Talbot -- author of the magisterial and deeply moving Brothers (2007) -- uncovers the life and enormous power of the most evil American of the 20th-century ('though Ronald Reagan comes close), capitalist gangster Allen Dulles. Dulles, flat-out WASP Nazi and little girl molester, spent his diabolical career destroying democrats and democratic movements across the world (and most certainly at home). A short list: through Sullivan & Cromwell, he bankrolled the Third Reich's extermination of home-grown and international anti-Hitler conspiracies; helped destroy the post-World War II freedom movements in Greece, Italy, Spain, France, and West Germany; overthrew (or tried to) anti-capitalist governments and leaders in Laos, South Vietnam, Guatemala, Cambodia, Iran, the Congo, Indonesia, the Dominican Republic, Cuba, Brazil, Korea, India, Egypt, Haiti, Iraq. Dulles's crowning achievement: the murder of the President of the United States, John F. Kennedy; and two days later Kennedy's accused assassin Lee Harvey Oswald.
David Talbot speaks with Amy Goodman.