Assassination

LBJ talks to Jacqueline Kennedy

This call between JFK’s widow, Jackie Kennedy, and LBJ, took place about 10 days after President Kennedy’s assassination: via LBJ and Jacqueline Kennedy—Miller Center.

Obama recalls Ted Kennedy’s late nights

“By 36, two of his brothers were stolen from him in the most tragic, public of ways.  By 41, he nearly lost a beloved child to cancer.  And that made suffering something he knew.  And it made him more alive to the suffering of others. ” Read more

What’s the story with Governor Connally’s wound?

Milicent Cranor passed on the following note:

“On March 23, 2015, at 2:08 p.m. [in the JFK Facts Comment section], Jean Davison ended a message to someone named “Willy” with this comment: ‘This is what you get when you rely on secondary sources instead of reading the original testimony and documents: a distorted version spun through someone else’s head.’ ”

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More video evidence illuminates Bill O’Reilly’s JFK fib


From the Washington Post’s Erik Wemple, some priceless video of the young Bill O’Reilly covering the story of the suicide of CIA asset and Oswald pal George de Mohrenschildt in March 1977. Read more

Lee Harvey Oswald’s address book

Take a look, in living color, right here, thanks to A.J. Weberman.  Read more

Station wagon that carried Oswald’s gun up for auction

Ruth Paine's 1955 Bel-Air Station Wagon

Ruth Paine’s 1955 Bel-Air station wagon (credit: Jason Whitely, WFAA)

“What’s unique about this is this vehicle actually transported his rifle back to Dallas from where Oswald had been living in New Orleans,” said Farris Rookstool III, a JFK historian. Read more

Charles Shaffer, Warren Commission staffer who changed his mind

Charles N. Shaffer Jr. did just about everything right in representing John W. Dean III, the onetime White House counsel whose riveting testimony before a Senate committee in 1973 directly implicated President Richard M. Nixon in the Watergate break-in and coverup, leading to Nixon’s resignation the following year.

But Shaffer, who died at age 82 at his home in Woodbine, Md., on March 15, may not have felt that way about his work as a staff member of the Warren Commission in 1964. Read more

Letterman defends O’Reilly

“Millionaire entertainers who help one another promote their shows look out for each other,” notes Erik Wemple, Washington Post media critic.

What were JFK’s two greatest speeches?


President Kennedy gave two speeches, on June 10 and June 11, 1963 that changed the course of American history, says  historian Andrew Cohen, author of “Two Days in June.” Cohen explained what JFK wrought in a recent interview with CBC TV host Andrew Mansbridge.

 

Philip Shenon on Oswald: ‘Perhaps the FBI or Congress or both should send investigators back to Mexico’

Philip Shenon’s 2013 book, A Cruel and Shocking Act, reconstructed the story of the assassination of President Kennedy with an unusual focus: not on the perennial question of conspiracy but rather on a narrower issue: the destruction of evidence that followed in the wake of JFK’s murder on November 22, 1963.

Students of the JFK story already know much of the dismal tale, and Shenon adds story-telling verve and amazing detail to the trail of destruction, some of it human.

The book opens with the unnerving untold story of Charles William Thomas, a State Department official in Mexico City. In the mid-1960s, Thomas picked up on information about Lee Harvey Oswald’s famous trip to the Mexican capital in October 1963, six weeks before the president was gunned down in Dallas. Thomas insisted his superiors re-investigate the story. They responded by destroying his career. Thomas went on to commit suicide. The government later admitted error and compensated the family without much explanation of what had actually happened.

You have to wonder: If Oswald was a lone maniac, why destroy the man’s career for calling for a second look? You don’t have to agree with Shenon’s position on the larger conspiracy question to be impressed by the detail he brings to this story.

Shenon’s latest piece in Politico revealed that David Slawson, a Warren Commission investigator — and defender — now says the commission was deceived by the CIA and FBI and that Oswald may have had accessories in Mexico City. Read more

Former HSCA counsel Al Lewis dies

A faithful reader passed along this obituary of Al Lewis, former general counsel of the House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA): Lancaster attorney, who died Monday, took part in JFK investigation – LancasterOnline.

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Before final Selma march, LBJ agrees JFK needed more protection

Today, March 21, 2015, marks the 50th anniversary of the final of the three historic Selma-to-Montgomery marches protesting voting discrimination in the South.

During the first march, held March 7, the nation was shocked as it bore witness to the unchecked brutality Alabama state troopers unleashed upon peaceful marchers. The violence resulted in 2,000 U.S. troops joining 1,900 members of the Alabama National Guard to keep the peace during the final day of protest.

But in the lead up to that day, President Lyndon Johnson had to lobby Alabama Governor George Wallace to call up the National Guard. In this March 18, 1965, phone call, Wallace insists that state authorities could handle the situation, while allowing that he couldn’t promise that “nobody’s gonna get hit by a rock.”

He uses the JFK assassination to make his point (begins at the 11:00 minute mark):

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A new JFK witness?

To say this story, now posted on Vimeo, is flimsy, would be unfair to Mr. Flim.

The problem with Politico’s JFK conspiracy theory

Phil Shenon

As the United States and Cuba seek to negotiate a new relationship, ancient history is intruding.

“What if the answers to the many, persistent questions surrounding the assassination of President John F. Kennedy lie not in Dallas or Washington, D.C., but in the streets of a foreign capital that most Americans have never associated with the president’s murder? Mexico City.”

So begins Phil Shenon’s new piece in Politico, What Was Lee Harvey Oswald Doing in Mexico? Shenon is surely correct that the U.S. government’s response to Lee Oswald’s visit to  Mexico City in October 1963 is key to understanding the JFK assassination story.

And before Washington and Havana can reach any real rapprochement, renewed allegations that the Cuban government aided JFK’s accused assassin demand clarification.

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Hal Hendrix, journalist who collaborated with the CIA, dies at 92

Hal Hendrix

Hal Hendrix

Hal Hendrix was one of those respectable figures who hovered on the edge of the JFK assassination story. He was a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist whose service to the CIA is well-documented (though blandly denied in his recent Miami Herald obituary). He died Feb. 12 in Vero Beach, Florida. He was 92 years old.

Who was Hal Hendrix and what was his role in the JFK story?

One version comes from the Spartacus Educational Forum. John Simkin writes:

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