from Humans Are Free:
James Forrestal, the first US Secretary of Defense, died on May 22, 1949. More precisely, at 1:50 AM which makes the case more mysterious. The circumstances surrounding Forrestal’s dying hours were engulfed in dispute. All we know for definite is that Forrestal’s body was discovered on the third story canopy of the Bethesda Naval Hospital in Maryland in the early hours of the 22nd. Did he take a fatal leap out of the window of the 13th floor of the hospital, his mind in turmoil and suicide on his mind? Was it an accident? Or, was Forrestal assassinated?
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The Mysterious Death Of James Forrestal
This is because, for years, there have been suspicions that Forrestal was aware of something (perhaps everything) the US government was concealing about UFOs in the late 1940s. It was only a matter of time before Forrestal began to demonstrate psychological difficulties. Depression, allegedly brought on by his massive workload, was cited as the primary culprit. The situation deteriorated further: the depression worsened, anxiety attacks began, and a significant dose of paranoia overcame him.
This was not good for the US government, as Secretary of Defense Forrestal was a critical component of the country’s infrastructure. However, President Truman secretly designated him as a potential threat to the Department of Defense’s orderly operation due to his psychological problems. By the end of 1948, Forrestal’s precarious mental state had deteriorated further.
At some point, action has to be taken. And it most emphatically was. Forrestal was relieved of his duties as Secretary of Defense. The government’s next step was to assist Forrestal in regaining his health. Naturally, no one wanted the man to suffer or devolve into a life-threatening condition. As a result, the decision was made to admit Forrestal to the aforementioned Bethesda Naval Hospital, where he could hopefully recover.
Most concerning for Truman’s team, though, was the genuine danger that a destabilized Forrestal may run off the tracks and reveal some of the most closely held secrets of the US government. It was a perilous and unpredictably dangerous era. It would quickly deteriorate into a lethal situation. Forrestal had a strange incident a few days before he landed up in the naval hospital that had obvious Men in Black overtones.
On the day in question, Forrestal was visited by one of his friends, a man named Ferdinand Eberstadt, who expressed grave concern about Forrestal’s frail and paranoid mental state. Eberstadt (a lawyer, a banker, and the author of a 1945 paper titled “Task Force Report on National Security Organization”) was taken aback by what he witnessed upon his arrival at Forrestal’s residence.
All of the drapes had been drawn. In hushed tones, Forrestal informed his acquaintance that listening devices were hidden throughout the house. Sinister characters were keeping a close eye on his every step. His life was jeopardized. Perhaps it was.
To explain this to Eberstadt, Forrestal carefully opened one of the slats and nodded knowingly toward a pair of scruffily dressed individuals on the street corner. Forrestal told Eberstadt that “they” were a part of it. Within seconds, the doorbell at Forrestal’s residence was heard ringing. Forrestal had no intention of answering the door.
Fortunately, one of his staff members was on hand to assist him. A brief chat occurred, but neither Forrestal nor Eberstadt could hear it. The facts, however, swiftly came to Forrestal from his houseboy. According to what the two men were told, the visitor at the door was attempting to garner support for a postmaster position in his community.
Could he come in and chat with Forrestal, soliciting his assistance and advice? Due to Forrestal’s erratic behavior, the man was immediately dismissed.
Eberstadt and Forrestal kept a close eye on the man as he walked directly toward the two ill-dressed individuals who had already thrown Forrestal for a loop. When Forrestal observed the three clearly conversing, he believed that this was additional evidence of a conspiracy against him.
Perhaps the entire situation was exaggerated by a guy devolving into a communal state of paranoia, terror, and nervous collapse. Without a doubt, that is what occurred. However, it’s worth noting that this bizarre incident occurred during Eberstadt’s visit and has some Men in Black parallels.
To begin, the Men in Black are frequently characterized as seeming out of place: their complexion is exceedingly pale, their eyes are frequently bulging (hidden behind wraparound shades), and they are occasionally portrayed as wearing wigs and make-up. The implication is that they are not human beings.
On the day in question, Forrestal’s workers described his visitor as quite odd-looking. The man’s attempt to obtain access to Forrestal’s home — claiming to be seeking support for a future postmaster job – parallels 1960s stories of MIBs breaking into the homes of UFO witnesses by posing as military troops or police officials. Women in Black posed as census takers and gypsies during the same time period. Clearly, they were neither. Forrestal found himself in an unusual and scary predicament. Terrifying, too, for the man whose mind was crashing horribly.