David Gibbs of the University of Arizona: JFK assassination; “Case not so open and shut.”
“13 days before that dark day in Dallas, Somersett elicited a chilling, police tape-recorded threat from a right-wing racist who talked of how the President would soon be shot ‘from an office building with a high-powered rifle’ and how ‘they’ll pick up somebody within hours after … just to throw the public off.’”
In this report, CBS News seeks to portray the single bullet theory as “single bullet science” — and mostly fails.
Here’s some advice from James K. Galbraith, professor at the University of Texas and son of John Kenneth Galbraith, an adviser to JFK, on how to figure out the causes of JFK’s assassination: do it yourself.
Writing in the Austin American-Statesman, Galbraith says:
Anthony Summers, author of a new edition of his JFK book, “Not In Your Lifetime,” has a letter in the current issue of the New Yorker, responding to critic Adam Gopnik’s recent JFK essay. Summers questions the magazine’s faith in the lone gunman theory, firmly but politely, while dismissing far-fetched conspiracy theories that only confuse people.
Summers closes with a reasonable question;
Amid the glut of 50th anniversary JFK coverage, NPR’s interview with Jeremy Gunn, former general counsel for the Assassination Records Review Board (ARRB) from 1994 to 1998, stands out as one of the best recent pieces of journalism on the case of the murdered president.
Gunn is a quality witness. While largely unknown to both mainstream reporters and JFK conspiracy theorists, he was among the first people to see the vast body of JFK records made public by the ARRB in the mid-1990s.
In today’s Washington Post, Larry Sabato responds to last week’s negative review of his book “The Kennedy Half-Century” by Rutgers historian David Greenberg. Greenberg’s peevish response about “assassination buffs” reveals what really irks him:
What kind of president was John F. Kennedy? Who were his enemies? These questions still preoccupy the American people. And the answers are found in a debate of two leading experts on the subject. Read more
Anthony Summers, biographer and former BBC correspondent, has been writing about JFK’s assassination for three decades for publications ranging from The Times of London to Vanity Fair. In my possibly biased opinion, I think his book, “Not In Your Lifetime,” is the best single volume on the JFK assassination and its confusing investigatory aftermath.
I sent him some questions by email and he responded as follows:
JFKFacts: You started reporting on the JFK story in the late 1970s. You were one of the first professional journalists to look deeply into the JFK assassination story. What did you discover?
Anthony Summers: At the time of the assassination occurred, I’d been a student at Oxford. I had reporting ambitions, and Dallas was almost the first real story I covered. I’d been working for a TV program during the vacations, and the program’s editor phoned within an hour of the assassination – it was early evening in the UK – to say he was gathering a team and chartering a plane to Texas. Could I drop everything and come?
Professor James Galbraith takes issue with a passing claim in a new essay by New York Times editor Jill Abramson, “Kennedy, the Elusive President.”
Galbraith, who teaches at the University of Texas, writes:
Philip Shenon’s appearance on Face the Nation today is a breakthrough in JFK assassination coverage in three ways.
As the author of the new book, A Cruel and Shocking Act: The Secret History of the Kennedy Assassination, Shenon is credited with breaking news about the JFK story. While the former New York Times reporter pledges allegiance to the old lone gunman theory (de riguer for a member of the Washington press corps), his new information clarifies troubling facts that many historians and journalists have preferred to avoid. Read more
“By early 1961, at least three different CIA counterintelligence teams were watching an obscure young man named Lee Harvey Oswald,” writes Bill Simpich in Chapter 2 of his fascinating book, “State Secret,” which is being serialized on MaryFerrell.org.
The most complete version of the Air Force One radio transmissions made on the day President John F. Kennedy was killed 50 years ago were aired publicly for the first time today at a JFK assassination conference at Duquesne University.
The 88-minute recording, available online here, captures the reaction of top U.S. government officials, including ultra-conservative Air Force Gen. Curtis LeMay, to the news that JFK had been shot in Dallas.