A faithful reader offers a correction to a comment by former Warren Commission staffer Howard Willens in his recent interview with JFK Facts. Willens mentioned the oft-heard story that Lee Oswald threatened to kill President Kennedy while visiting the Cuban Consulate in Mexico City in Septembert 1963 two months before the assassination of President Kennedy.
Willens’ mistake, this reader writes, “is worth correcting for the record.”
Howard Willens, former staff attorney on the Warren Commission, remains one of its most vigorous public defenders 50 years later. As I reported yesterday, he agreed to answer questions from JFK Facts via email. Because all of the questions were submitted at once, there were no follow up questions. In any case, my intent was not to conduct a hostile interrogation but to elicit his thoughts and hopefully start a dialogue. (I found his journal from 1964, which he has posted on his website, to be a valuable document for understanding the limitations of the Commission’s approach to its investigation.)
Now let’s hear from him. Read more
A couple of people wrote this week, asking why we allow anti-conspiratorial writers to comment on the site.
Answer: Because of a certain philosophical premise we embrace: Read more
Probably. A tape recording of man identifying himself as Oswald was probably destroyed in January 1986. This question, prompted by a comment from reader JSA, is a natural follow up to the question, “Did the CIA track Oswald before JFK was killed?”
Some thing the tape may still exist but I think the evidence suggests otherwise. What is certain is that contrary to the false claims of the CIA, the tape existed after November 22, 1963.
The Rev. Lance Moore joins James Douglass as a theologian who has thought long and hard about the JFK assassination. In a piece publised in Op-Ed News yesterday, Moore, an ordained Methodist minister, asks of JFK’s murder, “Why are they still lying to us?”
Good question. Read more
The question is still “hotly debated” says the JFK Library and Museum, not the least because the question has become part of the debate over the causes of JFK’s assassination.
What does the record show about Kennedy’s thinking and actions on Vietnam? Read more
Operation Northwoods was a Pentagon plan to provoke a U.S. invasion of Cuba in 1963 through the use of deception operations. First disclosed by the Assassination Records Review Board in 1997, the Northwoods plans are among the most significant new JFK documents to emerge since Oliver Stone’s “JFK” movie.
Operation Northwoods envisioned U.S. intelligence operatives staging violent attacks on U.S. targets and arranging for the blame for the mayhem to fall on Fidel Castro and his communist government. The idea, wrote one planner, was to creates a “justification for U.S. intervention in Cuba,” by orchestrating a crime that placed the U.S. government “in the apparent position of suffering defensible grievances from a rash and irresponsible government” in Cuba.
These plans included the use of violence on American soil against American citizens.
In response to my call for crowdsourcing Madeleine Brown’s story about Vice President Johnson attending a party the night before the assassination of JFK and saying the Kennedys would never embarrass him again, I received no information to corroborate Brown’s story.
Electronic security expert John Martino talked with friends and family about his foreknowledge of a JFK plot.
Somebody did talk.
His name was John Martino. In 1963 he was an anti-Castro militant who mixed with organized crime figures and CIA officers. His story is one of the clearest indicators that opponents of JFK’s Cuba policy had foreknowledge that President Kennedy might be assassinated in Dallas.
To put it another way, those who doubt there was a conspiracy need to address John Martino’s story. It is corroborated in multiple ways.
Martino, a native of New Jersey, was a petty racketeer as a young man with arrests for gambling and loan sharking.
Peter Dale Scott
Alan Dale, moderator of JFK Essentials forum, had been conducting conversations with JFK authors, including me. But the one I’m most interested in hearing is Dale’s interview of Professor Peter Dale Scott, the author of “Deep Politics and the Death of JFK,” among many other books.
I don’t always agree with Scott — his ideas about the Sept. 11 attacks strike me as more imaginative than credible — but he is a formidable intellect whose provocative writings and deep research on JFK and the national security state are have taught me a lot.
Listen to Dale’s interview with Scott.
Yes, closely and constantly.
This is one of the biggest JFK revelations of the past 20 years, and one that we need talk up in social and news media on the 50th anniversary of JFK’s assassination.
While the CIA assured Congress in the 1970s that its interest in Lee Harvey Oswald before JFK was killed was “routine,” the newest documents tell a very different story: Oswald was monitored closely and constantly by an super-secret office within the CIA’s Counterintelligence Staff from 1959 to 1963, known as the Special Investigations Group.
If you want to keep up with the latest U.S. national security disclosures, you can do a lot worse than the National Security Archive Facebook page.
Where else are you going to find an authoritative guide to the U.S. government’s views of Nelson Mandela when he was arrested in 1962.
James DiEugenio, author
James DiEugenio, author and prolific contributor to the Citzens for Truth About the Kennedy Assassination Web site, has published “The State of the JFK case: 50 Years Out,” which makes some timely points on which I think everyone can agree.
I disagree with DiEugenio’s harsh assessment of Philip Shenon’s JFK book, “A Cruel and Shocking Act.” He calls the book a “disgraceful,” “travesty,” and an “apologia.” I wonder how he would describe a truly bad book. Such epithets scant the very interesting discoveries in Shenon’s reporting, including:
James Fetzer, a retired professor of philosophy from the University of Minnesota-Duluth, is the very picture of a conspiracy theorist, from his dubious haircut to his hectoring tone to his assured command of facts. Professsor Fetzer recently offered his most detailed JFK conspiracy theory yet in Veterans Today, He purports to identify, by name, the six men who allegedly fired gunshots at President Kennedy on November 22, 1963.
The lavish detail of Fetzer’s allegations evokes one of the finest pieces of JFK journalism ever published — in the Onion. Fetzer’s is an American tale: a posse of six-shooters joins the army of Dealey Plaza gunmen.
On December 17, 1963, a lawyer from New York named Mark Lane wrote to Chief Justice Warren to “respectfully request that your Commission give consideration to the appointment of defense counsel” for the accused presidential assassin Lee Harvey Oswald. He enclosed an article he had written.
The article was published two days later in the National Guardian, a weekly publication of leftist politics.
The headline proclaimed