House October Surprise Task Force

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Group.png House October Surprise Task Force  Rdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
FormationMarch 1992
ExtinctionJanuary 1993
InterestsOctober surprise conspiracy
Membership• Lee H. Hamilton
• Henry Hyde
• Lawrence Barcella
• Richard J. Leon
• Peggy Adler
• Mervyn M. Dymally
A group tasked with creating an official narrative to explain away evidence of the October Surprise conspiracy.

This was a task force instituted by the United States House of Representatives in March 1992 to examine the October Surprise allegations: that during the 1980 United States presidential election the campaign of Ronald Reagan had sought to negotiate a solution to the Iran hostage crisis in competition to the US government of Jimmy Carter, in order to prevent the successful resolution of the crisis giving Jimmy Carter an electoral boost.

"Second Thoughts"

In 2013, Robert Parry reported that Lee Hamilton was having "second thoughts" about the decision of the task force due to a document Parry obtained[1] by a FOIA request, which established that "a cable from the Madrid embassy indicating that Bill Casey was in town, for purposes unknown". Hamilton stated that "If the White House knew that Casey was there, they certainly should have shared it with us," adding that "you have to rely on people" in authority to comply with information requests. The document which revealed White House knowledge of Casey’s 1980 Madrid trip was not given to the House October Surprise Task Force. Asked whether this memo might have changed the task force’s dismissive October Surprise conclusion, Hamilton said yes, because the question of the Madrid trip was central to the task force’s investigation.[2]


Known Participants

2 of the 6 of the participants already have pages here:

Lawrence Barcella
Lee H. HamiltonHaving chaired some key house committees, Hamilton appears to have established himself as a safe pair of hands for handling potentially damaging information, explaining his choice as fallback vice chairman of the 9/11 Commission.


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