Zapata Corporation


Zapata Corporation

Zapata Corporation (NYSE|ZAP) is a holding company based in Rochester, New York and originating from an oil company started by a group including the former United States president George H. W. Bush. Various writers have found links between the company and the United States Central Intelligence Agency.

Early business history

The company traces its origins to Zapata Oil, founded in 1953 by future-U.S. President George H. W. Bush, along with his business partners John Overbey, Hugh Liedtke, Bill Liedtke, and Thomas J. Devine. Bush and Thomas J. Devine were oil-wildcatting associates.cite web
url=http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?docId=12758&relPageId=2
title=Memorandum: To: Deputy Director of Operations; Subject: Messrs. George Bush and Thomas J.
date=29 November 1975
author=Withheld (sanitized, unclassified document), Central Intelligence Agency
publisher=NARA Record Number: 104-10310-10271
] Their joint activities culminated in the establishment of Zapata Oil.cite web
url=http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?docId=12758&relPageId=2
title=Memorandum: To: Deputy Director of Operations; Subject: Messrs. George Bush and Thomas J.
date=29 November 1975
author=Withheld (sanitized, unclassified document), Central Intelligence Agency
publisher=NARA Record Number: 104-10310-10271
] The initial $1 million investment for Zapata was provided by the Liedtke brothers and their circle of investors, by Bush's father and uncle—Prescott Bush and Herbert Walker Bush, and his family circle of friends.

Hugh Liedtke was named president, Bush was vice president; Overbey soon left. In 1954, Zapata Off-Shore Company was formed as a subsidiary of Zapata Oil, with Bush as president of the new company. He raised some startup money from Eugene Meyer, publisher of the "Washington Post", and his son-in-law, Phillip Graham.cite web
url=http://web.archive.org/web/20040405042234/http://onlinejournal.com/Media/020504Hasty/020504hasty.html |title=Secret admirers: The Bushes and the Washington Post
work=Online Journal
date=February 5, 2004
last=Hasty|first=Michael
] cite web
url=http://houston.bizjournals.com/houston/stories/1999/04/26/story2.html
date=April 23, 1999
title=Adios, Zapata! Colorful company founded by Bush relocates to N.Y.
work=Houston Business Journal
last=Perin |first=Monica
]

Zapata Off-Shore accepted an offer from an inventor, R. G. LeTourneau, for the development of a mobile but secure drilling rig. Zapata advanced him $400,000, which was to be refundable if the completed rig did not function. If it did function, LeTourneau would get an additional $550,000 together with 38,000 shares of Zapata Off-Shore common stock.

Zapata Corporation split in 1959 into independent companies Zapata Petroleum, headed by the Liedtkes,and Zapata Off-Shore, headed by Bush funded with $800,000.cite web|accessdate=
url=http://bushlibrary.tamu.edu/research/find/Doncol1/bushpaps.html#Series:%20Zapata%20Oil%20Files,%201943-1983
title=Zapata Oil Files, 1943-1983
work=George Bush Personal Papers
publisher=George Bush Presidential Library
archiveurl=http://web.archive.org/web/20070820095146/http://bushlibrary.tamu.edu/research/find/Doncol1/bushpaps.html#Series:%20Zapata%20Oil%20Files,%201943-1983
archivedate=2007-08-20
] Bush moved his offices and family that year from Midland, Texas to Houston. In 1963, Zapata Petroleum merged with South Penn Oil and other companies to become Pennzoil.

According to a George H. W. Bush-biographer Nicholas King, in the late-1950s and early-1960, Zapata Off-Shore concentrated its business in the Caribbean, the Gulf of Mexico, and the Central American coast.cite book
last=King |first=Nicholas
title=George Bush: A Biography
year=1980
publisher=Dodd Mead
isbn=0396079199
] The U.S. government began to auction off mineral rights to these areas in 1954. In 1958, drilling contracts with the seven large U.S. oil producers included wells 40 miles north of Isabela, Cuba, near the island Cay Sal. In July 1959, Cuba's Batista government was overthrown by Fidel Castro. Zapata also won a contract with Kuwait.

In 1962, Bush was joined in Zapata Off-Shore by a fellow Yale Skull and Bones member, Robert Gow. By 1963, Zapata Off-Shore had four operational oil-drilling — Scorpion (1956), Vinegaroon (1957), Sidewinder, and (in the Persian Gulf) Nola III.

In 1960, Jorge Diaz Serrano of Mexico was put in touch with Bush by Dresser. They created a new company, Perforaciones Marinas del Golfo, aka Permargo, in conjunction with Edwin Pauley of Pan American Petroleum, with whom Zapata had a previous offshore contract. The deal with Pemargo is not mentioned in Zapata's annual reports. A Bush spokesman in 1988 claimed the deal only lasted seven months, from March to September 1960. Zapata sold Nola I to Pemargo in 1964.

By 1964, Zapata Off-Shore had a number of subsidiaries, including: Seacat-Zapata Offshore Company (Persian Gulf), Zapata de Mexico, Zapata International Corporation, Zapata Mining Corporation, Zavala Oil Company, Zapata Overseas Corporation, and a 41% share of Amata Gas Corporation.

Bush ran for the United States Senate in 1964 and lost; he continued as president of Zapata Off-Shore until 1966, when he sold his interest to his business partner, Robert Gow, and ran for the U.S. House of Representatives.

In 1966, William Stamps Farish III, age 28, joined the board Zapata Board.

Zapata's filing records with the U.S.Securities and Exchange Commission are intact for the years 1955-1959, and again from 1967 onwards. However, records for the years 1960-1966 are missing. The commission's records officer stated that the records were inadvertently placed in a session file to be destroyed by a federal warehouse and that a total of 1,000 boxes were pulped in this procedure. The destruction of records occurred either in October 1983 (according to the records officer) or in 1981 shortly after Bush became Vice President of the United States (according to, Wison Carpenter, a record analyst with the commission).

Alleged connections with the CIA

Various writers have suggested that Zapata Off-Shore, and Bush in particular, cooperated with the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) beginning in the late 1950s.

FBI and CIA memos

Two Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) memoranda have been offered to show connections between the CIA and George H. W. Bush during his time at Zapata. The first memo names Zapata Off-Shore and was written by FBI Special Agent Graham Kitchel on 22 November 1963, regarding the John F. Kennedy assassination at 12:30 p.m. CST that day. It begins: "At 1:45 p.m. Mr. GEORGE H. W. BUSH, President of the Zapata Off-Shore Drilling Company, Houston, Texas, residence 5525 Briar, Houston, telephonically furnished the following information to writer. .. BUSH stated that he wanted to be kept confidential. .. was proceeding to Dallas, Texas, would remain in the Sheraton-Dallas Hotel."

A second FBI memorandum, written by J. Edgar Hoover, identifies "George Bush" with the CIA. It is dated 29 November 1963 and refers to a briefing given Bush on 23 November. The FBI Director describes a briefing about JFK's murder "orally furnished to Mr. George Bush of the Central Intelligence Agency. .. [by] this Bureau" on "November 23, 1963.

When this second memorandum surfaced during the 1988 presidential campaign, Bush spokespersons (including Stephen Hart) said Hoover's memo referred to another George Bush who worked for the CIA. [cite web| url=http://www.apfn.org/apfn/jfk2.htm| title=John Fitzgerald Kennedy| work=American Patriot Friends Network] CIA spokeswoman Sharron Basso suggested it was referring to a George William Bush. However, others described this G. William Bush as a "lowly researcher" and "coast and beach analyst" who worked only with documents and photos at the CIA in Virginia from September 1963 to February 1964, with a low rank of GS-5. [cite web|url=http://www.newsmine.org/archive/deceptions/assassinations/jfk/bush-calls-fbi-on-jfk-assasination-cia-briefing.txt|title=Bush called FBI when JFK died|work=The Houston Chronicle|date=December 21, 1991] [ [http://www.voxfux.com/features/bush_world_class_criminal.html George Bush: World ClassMonster] ] [ [http://inquirer.gn.apc.org/bush_story.html Date: Thu, 4 Jan 1996 20:14:32 GMT ] ] However, this G. William Bush swore an affadavit in federal court denying that Hoover's memo referred to him:

"I have carefully reviewed the FBI memorandum to the Director, Bureau of Intelligence and Research, Department of State dated November 29, 1963 which mentions a Mr. George Bush of the Central Intelligence Agency. ... I do not recognize the contents of the memorandum as information furnished to me orally or otherwise during the time I was at the CIA. In fact, during my time at the CIA, I did not receive any oral communications from any government agency of any nature whatsoever. I did not receive any information relating to the Kennedy assassination during my time at the CIA from the FBI. Based on the above, it is my conclusion that I am not the Mr. George Bush of the Central Intelligence Agency referred to in the memorandum." ("United States District Court for the District of Columbia, Civil Action 88-2600 GHR, Archives and Research Center v. Central Intelligence Agency," Affidavit of George William Bush, September 21, 1988.)

Allegations by former CIA staff

US Army Brigadier General Russell Bowen wrote that there was a cover-up of Zapata's CIA connections:

"Bush, in fact, did work directly with the anti-Castro Cuban groups in Miami before and after the Bay of Pigs invasion, using his company, Zapata Oil, as a corporate cover for his activities on behalf of the agency. Records at the University of Miami, where the operations were based for several years, show George Bush was present during this time." [cite book|url= [http://www.nwowatcher.com/ebooks/The%20Imaculate%20Deception%20-The%20Bush%20Crime%20Family%20Exposed.pdf] title=The Immaculate Deception: The Bush Crime Family Exposed|Author=Russell Bowen|year=1991]
Another writer [ [http://books.google.com/books?id=iDIEnK522TgC&dq=prelude+to+terror&pg=PP1&ots=wWdVVQ7Lrx&sig=LMxLhriY4z_qZJ_lhjrOXYCpnkk&prev=http://www.google.com/search%3Fq%3Dprelude%2Bto%2Bterror%26sourceid%3Dnavclient-ff%26ie%3DUTF-8%26rlz%3D1B3GGGL_enUS242US242&sa=X&oi=print&ct=title&cad=one-book-with-thumbnail#PPA13,M1 "Prelude to Terror"] Joseph J. Trento] quotes four former U.S. intelligence officials saying Bush was involved with the CIA prior to the Bay of Pigs:

Robert T. Crowley and William Corson of the CIA:

"Bush was officially considered a CIA business asset, according to Crowley and Corson. "George's insecurities were clay to someone like Dulles," William Corson said. To recruit young George Bush, Robert Crowley explained, Dulles convinced him that "he could contribute to his country as well as get help from the CIA for his overseas business activities."

[Bush] was, according to Corson, "perfect at talent spotting and looking at potential recruits for the CIA. You have to remember, we had real fears of Soviet activity in Mexico in the 1950s. Bush was one of many businessmen that would be reimbursed for hiring someone the CIA was interested in, or simply carrying a message." [http://books.google.com/books?id=iDIEnK522TgC&dq=prelude+to+terror&pg=PP1&ots=wWdVVQ7Lrx&sig=LMxLhriY4z_qZJ_lhjrOXYCpnkk&prev=http://www.google.com/search%3Fq%3Dprelude%2Bto%2Bterror%26sourceid%3Dnavclient-ff%26ie%3DUTF-8%26rlz%3D1B3GGGL_enUS242US242&sa=X&oi=print&ct=title&cad=one-book-with-thumbnail#PPA14,M1 --Chapter 2 page 14] "

John Sherwood of the CIA:

"Bush was at first a tiny part of OPERATION MONGOOSE, the CIA's code name for their anti-Castro operations. According to the late John Sherwood, "Bush was like hundreds of other businessmen who provided the nuts-and-bolts assistance such operations require... What they mainly helped us with was to give us a place to park people that was discreet." [http://books.google.com/books?id=iDIEnK522TgC&dq=prelude+to+terror&pg=PP1&ots=wWdVVQ7Lrx&sig=LMxLhriY4z_qZJ_lhjrOXYCpnkk&prev=http://www.google.com/search%3Fq%3Dprelude%2Bto%2Bterror%26sourceid%3Dnavclient-ff%26ie%3DUTF-8%26rlz%3D1B3GGGL_enUS242US242&sa=X&oi=print&ct=title&cad=one-book-with-thumbnail#PPA16,M1 --Chapter 2 page 16] "

An anonymous official connected to "Operation Mongoose":

"George Bush would be given a list of names of Cuban oil workers we would want placed in jobs... The oil platforms he dealt in were perfect for training the Cubans in raids on their homeland. [http://books.google.com/books?id=iDIEnK522TgC&dq=prelude+to+terror&pg=PP1&ots=wWdVVQ7Lrx&sig=LMxLhriY4z_qZJ_lhjrOXYCpnkk&prev=http://www.google.com/search%3Fq%3Dprelude%2Bto%2Bterror%26sourceid%3Dnavclient-ff%26ie%3DUTF-8%26rlz%3D1B3GGGL_enUS242US242&sa=X&oi=print&ct=title&cad=one-book-with-thumbnail#PPA16,M1 --Chapter 2 page 16] "

John Loftus, in his book "Secret War" quotes former U.S. intelligence officials reporting the same story:

"The Zapata-Permargo deal caught the eye of Allan Dulles, who the "old spies" report was the man who recruited Bush's oil company as a part time purchasing front for the CIA. Zapata provided commercial supplies for one of Dulles' most notorious operations: the Bay of Pigs Invasion. --Chapter 16 page 368"

Finally, according to Cuban intelligence official Fabian Escalante in "The Cuba Project: CIA Covert Operations 1959-62" [http://i48.photobucket.com/albums/f218/e_ray/Book%20refrences/1a.jpg] [http://i48.photobucket.com/albums/f218/e_ray/Book%20refrences/2a.jpg] , Jack Crichton and George H.W. Bush raised funds for the CIA's Operation 40. [http://www.amazon.com/dp/1876175990]

"Tracy Barnes functioned as head of the Cuban Task Force. He called a meeting on January 18,1960, in his office in Quarters Eyes, near the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, which the navy had lent while new buildings were being constructed in Langley. Those who gathered there included the eccentric Howard Hunt, future head of the Watergate team and a writer of crime novels; the egocentric Frank Bender, a friend of Trujillo; Jack Esterline, who had come straight from Venezuela where he directed a CIA group; psychological warfare expert David A. Phillips, and others. The team responsible for the plans to overthrow the government of Jacobo Arbenz in Guatemala in 1954 was reconstituted, and in the minds of all its members this would be a rerun of the same plan. Barnes talked at length of the goals to be achieved. He explained that Vice-President Richard Nixon was the Cuban "case officer," and had assembled an important group of businessmen headed by George Bush [Snr.] and Jack Crichton, both Texasoilmen, to gather the necessary funds for [Operation 40] . Nixon was a protege of Bush's father [Prescott] , who in 1946 had supported Nixon's bid for congress. In fact, [Presott] Bush was the campaign strategist who brought Eisenhower and Nixon to the presidency of the United States. With such patrons, Barnes was certain that failure was impossible." --Page 43-44

Fabian Escalante was in the Department of State Security (G-2) in Cuba in 1960. At the time of the Bay of Pigs, Escalante was head of a counter-intelligence unit and was part of a team investigating a CIA operation called Sentinels of Liberty, an attempt to recruit Cubans willing to work against Castro. His information about Bush apparently comes from a counterintelligence operation against Tracy Barnes of the CIA.

Allegations of the involvement of a former CIA officer in the foundation of Zapata

On January 8, 2007, newly released internal CIA documents revealed that Zapata had in fact emerged from Bush’s collaboration with a covert CIA officer in the 1950s. According to a CIA internal memo dated November 29, 1975, Zapata Petroleum began in 1953 through Bush’s joint efforts with Thomas J. Devine, a CIA staffer who had resigned his agency position that same year to go into private business, but who continued to work for the CIA under commercial cover. Devine would later accompany Bush to Vietnam in late 1967 as a "cleared and witting commercial asset" of the agency, acted as his informal foreign affairs advisor, and had a close relationship with him through 1975. [ [http://realnews.org/rn/content/zapata.html] , [http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?docId=12758&relPageId=2] , [http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?docId=12758&relPageId=3] ]

Bay of Pigs

The CIA codename for the Bay of Pigs invasion of April 1961 was "Operation Zapata". [See Beschloss, p.89] . Through his work with Zapata Off-Shore, Bush is alleged to have come into contact with Felix Rodriguez, Barry Seal, Porter Goss, and E. Howard Hunt, around the time of the Bay of Pigs operation. [ [http://www.madcowprod.com/05072006.html Porter & 'the boys': Goss Made His "Bones" on CIA Hit Team ] ]

CIA liaison officer Col. L. (Leroy) Fletcher Prouty alleges [ in the book, [http://www.ratical.org/ratville/JFK/USO/chp1_p3.html "UNDERSTANDING SPECIAL OPERATIONS"] (1989) and on his [http://www.prouty.org/email.html website] ] that Zapata Off-Shore provided or was used as cover for two of the ships used in the Bay of Pigs invasion: the "Barbara J" and "Houston". Prouty claims he delivered two ships to an inactive Naval Base near Elizabeth City, North Carolina, for a CIA contact and he suspected very strongly that George Bush must have been involved:

"They asked me to see if we could find -- purchase -- a couple of transport ships. We got some people that were in that business, and they went along the coast and they found two old ships that we purchased and sent down to Elizabeth City and began to load with an awful lot of trucks that the Army was sending down there. We deck-loaded the trucks, and got all of their supplies on board. Everything that they needed was on two ships. It was rather interesting to note, looking back these days, that one of the ships was called the Houston, and the other ship was called the Barbara J. Colonel Hawkins had renamed the program as we selected a name for the Bay of Pigs operation. The code name was "Zapata." I was thinking a few months ago of what a coincidence that is. When Mr. Bush graduated from Yale, back there in the days when I was a professor at Yale, he formed an oil company, called "Zapata," with a man, Lieddke, who later on became president of Pennzoil. But the company that Lieddke and Mr. Bush formedwas the Zapata Oil Company. Mr. Bush's wife's name is Barbara J. And Mr. Bush claims as his hometown Houston, Texas. Now the triple coincidence there is strange; but I think it's interesting. I know nothing about its meaning. But these invasion ships were the Barbara J and the Houston, and the program was "Zapata." George Bush must have been somewhere around." [ [http://www.ratical.org/ratville/JFK/USO/chp1_p3.html Chp 1, Part III: 1961-1963: Prouty's Military Experiences 1941-1963 ] ]

John Loftus writes: "Prouty's credibility, however has been widely attacked because of his consultancy to Oliver Stone's film "JFK"." but notes on page 598 that: "While his credibility has suffered greatly because of his consultancy to Oliver Stone's film "JFK", his recollections about the CIA supply mission have been confirmed by other sources." [ [http://www.john-loftus.com John-Loftus.com ] ]

Nevertheless, researcher James K. Olmstead claims to have discovered a CIA memorandum which states that the boats were leased, not purchased, by the Garcia Line Corporation with offices in Havana and New York City. The owners were Alfredo Garcia and his five sons. The CIA was using the Rio Escondido for "exfiltrating anti-Castro leaders......prior to 1961 BOP planning." It had brought out Nino Diaz, and Manolo Ray. Its captain Gus Tirado was well known to the CIA. Eduardo Garcia met with two CIA agents in NYC and D.C. to arrange the use of the Garcia ships for the invasion. The alleged price was $600.00 per day per ship plus fuel, food and personnel.

Eduardo selected and hired 30 men who were "executioners for Batista" Miro Cardona of the Frente and the CIA did not like the choice of men hired to protect the Garcia ships. "Nobody questioned that Eduardo was coming along with the expedition. "I'm going to be in charge of my ships", he said.

Memorandum From the Chief of WH/4/PM, Central Intelligence Agency (Hawkins) to the Chief of WH/4 of the Directorate for Plans (Esterline)

The Barbara J (LCI), now enroute to the United States from Puerto Rico, requires repairs which may take up to two weeks for completion. The sister ship, the Blagar, is outfitting in Miami, and its crew is being assembled. It is expected that both vessels will be fully operational by mid-Januaryat the latest.

In view of the difficulty and delay encountered in purchasing, outfitting and readying for sea the two LCI's, the decision has been reached to purchase no more major vessels, but to charter them instead. The motor ship, Rio Escondido (converted LCT) will be chartered this week and one additional steam ship, somewhat larger, will be chartered early in February. Both ships belong to a
Panamanian Corporation controlled by the Garcia family of Cuba, who are actively cooperating with this Project.

These two ships will provide sufficient lift for troops and supplies in the invasion operation.

The Bay of Pigs operation was directed out of the "Miami Station" (also known as "JM/WAVE"), which was the CIA's largest station worldwide. It housed 200 agents who handled approximately 2,000 Cubans. Robert Reynolds was the CIA's Miami station chief from September 1960 to October 1961. He was replaced by career-CIA officer Theodore Shackley, who oversaw Operation Mongoose, Operation 40 (including Porter Goss, Felix Rodriguez, Barry Seal), and others. When Bush became CIA Director in 1976 he appointed Ted Shackley as Deputy Director of Covert Operations. When Bush became Vice President in 1981, he appointed Donald Gregg as his National Security Advisor.

Kevin Phillips [ [http://www.americandynasty.net American Dynasty] ] discusses George Bush's "highly likely" peripheral role in the Bay of Pigs events. He points to the leadership role of Bush's fellow Skull and Bones alumni in organizing the operation. He notes an additional personal factor for Bush: the Walker side of the family (who initially funded Zapata Corporation) had apparently lost a small fortune when Fidel Castro nationalized their West Indies Sugar Co. Edwin Pauley was "known for CIA connections," according to Phillips, it was Pauley who put Pemargo's Diaz and Bush together.

Watergate

Phillips and others have detailed subsequent involvement by Zapata associates in the Watergate affair. George Bush, as Richard Nixon's ambassador to the United Nations, urged his former Zapata partner Bill Liedtke to launder $100,000 to the White House plumbers. After Nixon's 1972 re-election, he appointed Bush as Chairman of the Republican Party National Committee. When the laundering was exposed, those involved included several CIA officials: E. Howard Hunt, Frank Sturgis, Eugenio Martínez, Virgilio González, and Bernard Barker. A discussion of the laundering appears on the Nixon tapes for June 23, 1973. [ [http://www.watergate.info/tapes/72-06-23_smoking-gun.shtml White] ]

Iran-Contra affair

Michael Maholy alleges [ [http://www.phoenixarchives.com/contact/1996/0396/032696.pdf CONTACT: The Phoenix Project, March 26, 1996 ] ] that Zapata Off-Shore was used as part of a CIA drug-smuggling ring to pay for arming Nicaraguan Contras in 1986-1988, including Rodriguez, Eugene Hasenfus and others. Mahony claims Zapata's oil rigs were used as staging bases for drug shipments, allegedly named "Operation Whale Watch." Mahony allegedly worked for Naval Intelligence, US State Department and CIA for two decades.

Decline

Zapata, under Robert Gow's direction, acquired a controlling interest in the United Fruit Company in 1969. Robert's father, Ralph Gow, was on United Fruit's board of directors.

Gow apparently left Zapata in 1970. He took with him from Zapata Peter C. Knudtzon. Ties to the Bush family continued. In 1971 both Jeb Bush and George W. Bush worked for Gow's new company, Stratford of Texas (also known as Stratford of Houston). Stratford imported tropical plants. According to Knudtzon, George W. Bush reportedly flew for Stratford to Florida and Guatemala. [ [http://shr.aaas.org/guatemala/ciidh/qr/english/chap3.html Chapter 3: The 1970s ] ] Stratford evidently had ties to a large commercial plantation in La Democracia, Huehuetenango, Guatemala.

In the 1970s, under chairman and CEO William Flynn, Zapata expanded its business to include subsidiaries in dredging, construction, coal mining, copper mining and fishing.

By the late 1970s, saddled with weak operations, high debt and low return on investment, the company again began undergoing changes in management and direction. Lead by John Mackin, who succeeded William Flynn, the company began selling off some of those businesses and refocused on offshore oil and gas exploration and production.

In 1982 chief operating officer Ronald Lassiter assumed the role of CEO, and presided over a decade of loss-making brought on by the collapse of oil prices. Zapata Off-shore became Zapata Corporation in 1982. Its stock performed poorly. By 1986 Zapata was one of the bad loans that shook the foundations of San Francisco-based Bank of America, with a debt of more than $500 million and a fiscal year loss of $250 million. The company announced several restructurings during those years and managed to stave off bankruptcy, but continued to incur major losses. In 1990 the oil drilling company proposed selling its entire fleet of offshore drilling rigs to focus solely on fishing. The company had not had a profitable quarter in more than five years.

Zapata Offshore continued on as an offshore drilling company until the early 1990s when it was purchased by Arethusa Offshore which a few years later sold the rigs to Diamond Offshore. Still struggling with debt by 1993, Zapata signed a deal with Norex America to raise more than $100 million through a loan and stock sale. But financier Malcolm Glazer, owner of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers NFL franchise and at the time owner of 40 percent of Zapata, did not want his holdings diluted and filed a lawsuit to block the deal.

Glazer era

By 1994 the company had come under Glazer's control, after a proxy fight. Glazer became chairman of Zapata, replacing Ronald Lassiter, and in 1995 Avram Glazer was named CEO and president of Zapata. De facto headquarters moved from Houston to Rochester, NY. It no longer engaged in exploration, but owned several natural gas service companies. It also produced protein products from the menhaden fish. In subsequent years Zapata sold its energy-related businesses and focused on marine protein.

Between 1998 and 2000, Zapata tried to position itself as an internet media company under the "zap.com" name. The company's stock boomed and crashed along with other dot-coms, and in 2001 the company conducted a 1 for 10 reverse stock split. The venture was cited by many investment journalists as an example of a company jumping on the internet bandwagon without any relevant experience. This period is probably best remembered for Zapata's unsolicited (and unsuccessful) takeover bid of the Excite internet portal. [cite web|url=http://news.cnet.com/2100-1001-211454.html|title=Excite rejects Zapata's bid|work=CNET News.com|date=May 21, 1998 |author=Suzanne Galante]

During this period Zapata also built up a controlling stake in Safety Components International, a manufacturer of air bag fabrics and cushions.

On December 2, 2005, Zapata Corporation Chairman, Avie Glazer, announced the sale of 4,162,394 shares, 77.3%, of Safety Components International to Wilbur L. Ross, Jr. for $51.2 million. The company sold its remaining stock in Omega Proteine on December 1, 2006, leaving it with no active subsidiary.

References

Public records

* [http://www.sec.gov/cgi-bin/browse-edgar?action=getcompany&CIK=109177 SEC filings of Zapata Corporation]
* Zapata Offshore Annual Reports, Microform Reading Room, Library of Congress.
* [http://www.watergate.info/tapes/72-06-23_smoking-gun.shtml Transcript and audio] of a "smoking gun" tape of Nixon telling Haldeman and Ehrlichman about the "Bay of Pigs" and "Texans."
* National Security Archives [http://home.earthlink.net/%7Etwainable/id18.html documentation] of GHW Bush's CIA involvement in the early 1960s.
* United States District Court for the District of Columbia, Civil Action 88-2600 GHR, Archives and Research Center v. Central Intelligence Agency, Affidavit of George William Bush, September 21, 1988.
* [http://bushlibrary.tamu.edu/research/find/Doncol1/bushpaps.html George Bush personal papers]

Zapata

* " [http://houston.bizjournals.com/houston/stories/1999/04/26/story2.html?t=printable Adios, Zapata] ! Colorful company founded by Bush relocates to N.Y.," "Houston Business Journal", April 26, 1999
* Franklin, H. Bruce, [http://www.motherjones.com/news/feature/2006/03/net_losses.html "Net Losses"] , Mother Jones, March 2006 - extensive article on role of Menhaded in ecosystem and possible results of overfishing. Retrieved 21 February, 2006

George Bush

* Kevin Philips, " [http://www.americandynasty.net|American Dynasty: Aristocracy, Fortune and the Politics of Deceit in the House of Bush] ," (2004), esp. pp.200-208.
* Russell Bowen, "The Immaculate Deception: The Bush Crime Family Exposed" (1991).
* Joseph McBride, "The Man Who Wasn't There: [http://inquirer.gn.apc.org/bush_story.html 'George Bush,' CIA Operative] ," "The Nation", July 16/23, 1988, p. 42.
* Joseph McBride, "Where Was George?", "The Nation", August 13/20, 1988, on the whereabouts of GHW Bush on 22 November 1963.
* Nicolas King, "George Bush: A Biography."
* Webster Tarpley & Anton Chaitkin, [http://www.tarpley.net/bush8b.htm "George Bush: The Unauthorized Biography"] , Chapter 8.2 (1991), and [http://modernhistoryproject.org/mhp/ArticleDisplay.php?Article=BushCh08-2 "Bush as a covert CIA operative during the early 1960s"] . Tarpey and Chaitkin are [http://www.google.com/search?num=100&hl=en&lr=&safe=off&as_qdr=all&q=Chaitkin+tarpley+%22Lyndon+larouche%22+&btnG=Search|closely associated] with Lyndon LaRouche.
* Laura Hanning 2004, "Study of Evil -- A World Reappraised": [http://home.earthlink.net/~twainable/id18.html supporting documents, photos, letters, part III George Herbert Walker Bush]
* Anthony L. Kimery, "George Bush and the CIA: In the Company of Friends," "Covert Action Quarterly", Summer, 1992.
* [http://www.granma.cu/ingles/33alo/30george-i.html "George HW Bush and Felix Rodriguez:] the tale of two old friends"
* "The Mafia, CIA & George [HW] Bush," Pete Brewton, S.P.I. Books, 1992

CIA

* Robert T. Crowley of the CIA (Quoted by Joseph J. Trento) "Prelude to Terror" (2005)
* William Corson of the CIA (Quoted by Joseph J. Trento) "Prelude to Terror" (2005)
* John Sherwood of the CIA (Quoted by Joseph J. Trento) "Prelude to Terror" (2005)Prelude to Terror Chapter 2 pg. 13 "Recruiting George H. W. Bush" [http://books.google.com/books?id=iDIEnK522TgC&dq=prelude+to+terror&pg=PP1&ots=wWdUQU6Ipv&sig=n6r0OsKfPqu_cAog89Nj6D1fJrg&prev=http://www.google.com/search%3Fhl%3Den%26ie%3DISO-8859-1%26q%3Dprelude%2Bto%2Bterror&sa=X&oi=print&ct=title&cad=one-book-with-thumbnail]
* Richard Bissell, "Reflections of a Cold Warrior," (Yale University Press, 1996).
* David Atlee Phillips, "The Night Watch".
* E. Howard Hunt, "Give Us This Day" (New Rochelle: Arlington Press, 1973)
* Michael R. Beschloss, "The Crisis Years: Kennedy and Khrushchev, 1960-63" (New York: Edward Burlingame Books, 1991), p. 89 refers to "Operation Zapata" as the codename for the Bay of Pigs operation.

Others

* Leroy Fletcher Prouty, "The Secret Team" (1973).
* Michael Maholy (of Yankton, SD), [http://www.phoenixarchives.com/contact/1994/1294/122794.pdf]
* Daniel Yergin, "The Prize," (1991).
* Rodney Stich (former FAA investigator) "Defrauding America" (1994), and "The Drugging of America" (1999).

External links

* [http://www.zapatacorp.com/ Zapata Corporation]


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