My approach to the JFK assassination is that it was “an operation”. When I’m feeling down to earth, I refer to myself as an “operations researcher.” When I’m making progress, I might upgrade to “investigator.”If I was looking for employment, I would go with “analyst.”
David Talbot refers to people like us as “people’s historians”. That’s good too.
When discussing the events of November 22, 1963, I ted to use terms like “Joint action”, “concerted action”, or “acted in concert.” Don’t forget the simple word “plan.”
I don’t often use the word “conspiracy.” I think that when talking about the JFK case or similar events, the c-word is counterproductive and marginalizing. Why describe those of us that challenge the lone gunman story as “conspiracy theorists”? Or, in reductive bumper sticker terms: CTs?
Those who study the case are “historians”, “researchers” or “students”. All perfectly good words, unlike “CT,” “LN,” or “theorist,” Theory of what?
‘JFK buff’ is an insult
The term “buff” is — how do i say this politely? –repellent. A buff is a hobbyist. What we’re doing has great value, but it would be a pretty sick hobby. Remember how John Kerry did some good work on the contra-cocaine story? Newsweek labeled him a “randy conspiracy buff”, invoking the trifecta of nudity, sex, and high adventure. No thanks.
I refer to myself as an “operations researcher.” When I’m making progress, I might upgrade to “investigator.”I
“Lone nut” is also in poor taste, often used in the context of the “LN crowd”. The terms “Lone wolf” or “single gunman” are respectful ways to refer to one’s adversaries in a case like this.
The people fighting AIDS had to deal with “victim”, “sick”, and similar metaphors. Those in danger of infection were not “shooters” or “junkies” but “injection drug users”, or IDUs. The challengers of the anti-immigrant forces have spent many years using the phrase “undocumented worker” rather than “illegal alien”. Words matter.
The romance of conspiracy
I believe that many of us use the phrase “conspiracy theorist” because it seems practical, romantic, or titillating.
The last two reasons are bad ones. Real bad. Two of the many reasons the word has been marginalized.
Those who study the case are “historians”, “researchers” or “students”. All perfectly good words, unlike “theorist”. Theory of what?
If we want to not be seen by anyone as “on the margins”, there is a simple fix. Admit that the phrase has been abused by our adversaries and the mass media. It is now used as a red flag. The design is to put the target in a box. It can no longer be used by us in a practical sense.
I think the romantic and titillating aspects of the word “conspiracy” are enticing. “They killed the President! We have to call it what it is – conspiracy!” It’s fun to be wrapped up in a world of high adventure, fighting the forces of Mordor with the energies of truth and light.
I understand it — I like romantic stuff and have a rebel nature. But, I have to admit, it makes me blue. We’re in the midst of an important conflict about how history will be written. We need to share good stories, not needless drama. I’d rather win.
Many thanks for many responses to my plea for James Angleton research help. I now have a team working on it. Soon we will have a transcript of one of the last times Angleton testified in detail about the state of U.S. counterintelligence, Yuri Nosenko, Lee Harvey Oswald and other related matters. Thanks to all
Here’s another research task that would be very useful for me, (and otherstudents/bloggers/historians):
As I said in at the JFK Lancer conference in Dallas two years ago, the challenge is to: describe the latest evidence accurately; use the internet to mobilize online civil society; press for full disclosure; and insist on accountability. It can be done by 2017.
Those of us who comb through the CIA’s records about Lee Harvey Oswald’s time in Mexico City are frustrated that there is no easy way to find many of the key cables between Mexico City and Headquarters, or between JMWAVE in Miami and Headquarters.
What we have run into is the working equivalent of a CIA tutorial on how to avoid providing information mandated under the law.
Secretary of State John Kerry opens the U.S. Embassy in Havana on August 14, 2015.
The 1999 Final Report of the Assassination Records Review Board singled out President Clinton’s State Department of a lack of cooperation asserting it “obviously did not consider pursuit of foreign records about the Kennedy assassination to be a priority,“and “more of a hindrance than help“.
David S. Ferriero, the Archivist of the United States (AOTUS), has an ongoing duty to ensure that all assassination records are obtained before the provisions of the JFK Act fully expire. Write his blog and tell him the State Department needs to come into compliance with the law. Read more
NARA has put U. S. government agencies on notice that the withheld material is going to be released in 2017 unless they appeal to the President to prevent it.
The people of the United States must anticipate now that:
U.S. agencies, including the CIA, will appeal for postponing the release of some JFK Files
Without significant public pressure the president will assume that Americans are not interested in upholding the terms of the President John F. Kennedy Assassination Records Collection Act, and will agree to delaying JFK material
Over the course of the next twenty-five months citizens concerned about the possible continued withholding of these assassination records must:
Stay informed about the JFK Records Act;
Organize in ways to increase and share awareness
Contact elected representatives and 2016 presidential hopefuls see where they stand on full JFK disclosure in October 2017.
Join with us to ensure that our elected officials will uphold and enforce the terms of the President John F. Kennedy Assassination Records Collection Act. Let them know that these records belong to the American people.
What prompted Bill Garnet, a man with a long career in the entertaining world of reality TV, to take on the daunting controversy of JFK assassination?
“A gaping hole in the story,” he said in a recent telephone interview “What happened in Trauma Room One?”
Actually Garnet, the Los Angeles-based producer of “The Parkland Doctors,” a forthcoming documentary about the seven doctors who tried to save President Kennedy’s life, has long been a student of the JFK case. As an undergraduate at the University of Miami he wrote his thesis the events of November 22, 1963.
But Garnet’s 30-year career as a TV producer and director took him in different direction.
Last week, I gave $63 on Indiegogo to support completion of this documentary, “The Parkland Doctors.” I hope you will do the same. Bringing together all these doctors to recount their experience in simple factual style will help complete and clarify the historical record of JFK’s assassination.