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6 Washington insiders who suspected a JFK plot

Jackie Kennedy’s private thoughts about Dallas

Defenders of the semi-official theory of JFK’s assassination sometimes suggest that anyone who disagrees is deluded or dishonest. Dale Myers and Gus Russo have dubbed the benighted souls “the conspirati,” a term intended to convey disdain for those allegedly emotionally needy or intellectually incompetent people who doubt the claim that one man killed JFK for no reason.

The problem with this trope, alas, is the facts. There were plenty of astute observers of American power in 1963 who rejected the official theory of a “lone nut” and concluded President Kennedy had been killed by his enemies.

Here are six six U.S. government insiders in 1963 who suspected a JFK was killed by a conspiracy.

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Ex-flame says Jack Ruby ‘had no choice’ but to kill Oswald

“Gail Raven,” an exotic dancer in the southwestern United States in the 1960s, became friends with Jack Ruby.

Who says new JFK witnesses can’t be found?
After JFK Facts recounted Jack Ruby’s pursuit of an exotic dancer named Gail Raven in January 1963, I received a message from a woman who identified herself as Raven’s daughter. She told me that her mother was still alive, and she confirmed that her mother and Jack Ruby were close. I asked her if her mother would share her memories of the man who killed accused assassin Lee H. Oswald. She said yes.
In 1963 Gail Raven was the stage name of a precociously mature 20-year-old woman who danced on the national nightclub circuit that included Ruby’s Carousel Club in Dallas. Ruby (born Jack Rubenstein) was a Chicago tough guy who took a shine to her, and they became friends.
Now close to 70 years old, Gail Raven is living in the southern United States. I have confirmed her real name but have agreed not to publish it here to protect her privacy. Read more

Angleton today: Smoke, mirrors, and mass surveillance

James Angleton

James Angleton

In the current issue of the New York Review of Books Max Hastings, conservative British journalist and pundit, contextualizes James Angleton in the history of U.S. intelligence. Hastings writes:

“The Ghost, Jefferson Morley’s shrewd account of Angleton’s career as Langley’s counterintelligence chief from 1954 to 1975, shows the harm that can be done by an energetic spook who is permitted grossly excessive latitude. The Ghost focuses on two manifestations of this.

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Kavanaugh’s judicial activism on display

Brett Kavanaugh

Brett Kavanaugh, creative jurist

On the second day of the Brett Kavanaugh confirmation hearings, the Supreme Court nominee’s legal record is under close scrutiny. While far from is most important ruling, his last signed opinion as an appellate court judge provides a window into his judicial philosophy.

In a split decision on July 9, Kavanaugh’s vote decided my Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit for certain JFK assassination files. As fellow judge Karen Henderson pointed out in a stinging dissent, the majority decision ignored precedent and invented mandate.

Substantively, Kavanaugh’s decision undermined a key feature of FOIA law and strengthened the CIA and other agencies that want to keep embarrassing secrets out of the public record–even when they are more than 50 years old. That’s why I’m appealing the decision.

New files reveal the CIA spied on JFK researchers in 1995

Bill Simpich has a terrific piece at WhoWhatWhy about the new JFK files released since October 2017. One document found by Simpich jumped out at me. In 1995 the CIA asked Brazilian intelligence.

to photograph the JFK researchers and Cuban counterintelligence officers that met together in August, 1995 in Rio de Janeiro pursuant to an invitation by the Ministry of Culture.

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What’s the most important piece of new JFK assassination evidence?

I nominate a forgotten tape recording that surfaced in 2011. The unedited Air Force One tapes from the afternoon of November 22, 1963 could be a reveleatory–if it ever surfaces. Read more

QAnon is a psychedelic mushroom growing in the fertile manure of the Warren Commission

As the editor of the JFK Facts blog, I try not to spend a lot of time on stupid conspiracy theories, but given tge widespread ignorance and confusion on the subject, journalistic duty often calls.

Who killed JFK? The Federal Reserve? Nah. A Secret Service man? A hoax. Ted Cruz’s father? Pure B.S. George H.W. Bush?  Heavy breathing is not the same as credible evidence.  On a recent Black Vault podcast, the most common JFK question I heard was, “Was Kennedy assassinated because of his interest in UFO’s?” Um, no, he was not.

QAnon

A chart of the QAnon conspiracy theory.

Which brings me to QAnon, the imaginative conspiracy theorist now dominating the Internet, attracting followers of President Trump, and obsessing the Washington Post, which has has published four articles on QAnon in the past week. Like many conspiracy theories, the QAnon fever dream can be traced back to the assassination of JFK.

The QAnon conspiracy theory is a psychedelic mushroom growing in the fertile manure of the Warren Commission. This mind-altering proposition grows in the gloom of anonymous chat groups. It is then stimulated by the bright lights of social media. And finally it is harvested and ingested by Trump cultists eager to prolong the alt-reality buzz that commenced on January 20, 2017.

But it all began on November 22, 1963 Read more

Judge Karen Henderson dissents from Brett Kavanaugh’s decision favoring CIA

Judge Karen Henderson

Judge Karen Henderson, JFK dissenter

Click for here Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s July 9 decision in Morley v CIA,

Morley v CIA is a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit seeking release of certain CIA files related to the assassination of President John F Kennedy in November 1963.

in his last decision before being nominated by President Trump to serve on the Supreme Court, Kavanaugh ruled in favor of the CIA.

Judge Karen Henderson, first appointed to the federal bench by President Ronald Reagan, dissented: Read more

My day in court with Judge Kavanaugh: the subject was JFK files

Judge Brett Kavanaugh

Judge Brett Kavanaugh

On March 19 the DC Court of Appeals heard oral arguments in my FOIA lawsuit, Morley v CIA. In the absence of Senior Judge Karen Henderson, Judge Brett Kavanaugh presided.

Now Kavanaugh has been nominated for the Supreme Court, and his every word is being parsed.

The question before the court that day: Was the CIA obligated to pay my court costs for a long-running lawsuit about certain JFK assassination files held by the agency.

Click for the audio recording of the hearing. Kavanaugh is the first speaker you will hear, followed by my attorney Jim Lesar, a veteran FOIA litigator. Read more

Canadian TV on what we know now about Angleton and JFK

The trouble with Nicholas Nalli’s paper on “Gunshot-wound dynamics model’ for JFK assassination

ZAPRUDER

This paper, published in the scientific journal Heliyon, represents an attempt to salvage Professor Luis Alvarez’s model of the gunshot that killed President Kennedy. Alvarez tried to explain the rearward recoil motion of Kennedy’s head, seen in Abraham Zapruder’s film, by what he called a “jetting effect.” Read more

CIA outs a living literary spy in the new JFK files

He was Richard Gibson, journalist, novelist, co-founder of the Fair Play for Cuba Committee, and cosmopolitan intellectual.

My story in Newsweek.

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After Trump’s big promise, 15,834 JFK files remain secret

Last October 26, President Trump was a happy tweeter:


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The JFK story according to seven U.S. presidents

Before Donald Trump made his false claim that Ted Cruz’s father once associated with accused presidential assassin Lee Oswald, six previous U.S. presidents had offered opinions about who killed JFK. Read more

The CIA is still protecting its spy who shadowed Martin Luther King

The CIA shadowed  Martin Luther King during his stay at a Miami hotel in July 1966 with the help of a spy whose identity still remains a secret a half century later.

The revelation is found in a 48-page file on King, portions of which were made public late last year, along with thousands of JFK assassination files.

President Trump has ordered all federal agencies to release the rest of their JFK-related files by April 26, a directive which covers the agency’s King file as well.

Trump’s order, issued last October, exempts from disclosure only “the names and addresses of any mentioned person who is still living.”  So if the CIA’s spy is deceased, his or her name is supposed to be made public this week.

MLK Surveillance

“Surveillance was a joint effort of IDEN A [the spy] and local ODENVY [CIA’s code name for the FBI],” according to a cable from the chief of the agency’s south Florida station. The surveillance took place in July 1966 when King and two associates stayed at a Miami airport hotel.

While the FBI’s surveillance of King is notorious, much less is known about the CIA’s interest in the civil right leader. Such eavesdropping violated the agency’s charter barring operations on U.S. soil.

The cable describes the spy as a “cleared and witting contact,” meaning he or she had a working relationship with the agency at the time. Approximately five lines of text that identify the spy have been blanked out in the document released to the National Archives in November 2017.

The spy listened in on King’s conversations from an adjacent hotel room for six hours.

“References were made to the Florida Gubernatorial Race, a trip to Bimini [an island in the Bahamas] and several miscellaneous sex experiences,” the cable reported.

After King and associates checked out the next day, the CIA’s spy searched their rooms, according to the cable. The informant found a phone message in a trash can asking King to call Harry Wachtel, a New York lawyer who served as King’s legal counsel.

The CIA’s spy claimed, inaccurately, that Wachtel was “an identified member of the Communist Party.” In fact, the FBI only had a report that Wachtel once had been active in the National Lawyer Guild, a leftist organization that some charged was a communist influenced.

The spy also found an envelope bearing the name of an unmarried woman who supposedly stay in the hotel room.

It seems likely that the CIA spying on King’s private life and is hiding the results. Nine of the next ten pages in the King file are completely classified, along with the spy’s name.

The memo supports the idea that the CIA worked with the FBI to obtain defamatory information about the civil rights leader less than two years before he was slain in Memphis on April 4, 1968.

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You can read the CIA’s partially declassified King file here.