WikiSpooks seeks to rewrite Wikipedia on JFK

A website, called WikiSpooks, created by the Deep Politics Forum, is seeking to collectively write the story of the assassination of President Kennedy with a Wikipedia-style collaboration.

I proposed a similar approach in my remarks to the JFK Lancer conference last November. (Watch the speech here.)

I think WikiSpooks has a great idea that is undermined by this comment from Charles Drago:

“Anyone, with reasonable access to the evidence who does not conclude that JFK was killed by conspirators, is cognitively impaired and/or complicit in the crime.”

Come again, sir?

That is very peculiar way to start a conversation about historical truth. I have never read an entry in a good encyclopedia or credible reference book that states anyone who disagrees with the material presented is stupid and/or guilty of crime. If someone in the U.S. government wrote this I would say they were drunk or named Cass Sunstein.

I’ve never seen any such statement on Wikipedia, or Encarta or in the works of the best JFK authors like Anthony Summers, James Douglass, and Phil Shenon.

If I did read such words in an encyclopedia entry about a great historical crime (say, the Holocaust or the genocide of the American Indians or the U.S. invasion of Iraq or the Trayvon Martin case), I would immediately question the source’s credibility.

Such language undermines the very notion of a common history represented by an encyclopedia or scholarship.

WikiSpooks is right that we should seek to use social media to write credible account of JFK’s assassination in time for the 50th anniversary of the publication of the Warren Report in September 2014. This report needs to be delivered with a message of inclusion and transparency, not division and denunciation, if it is to reach a wide audience.

 

 

40 comments

  1. TLR says:

    Harold Weisberg phrased it better by basically saying that there are only two ways to defend the Warren Commission: through ignorance or by deception.

  2. Jonathan says:

    “Anyone, with reasonable access to the evidence who does not conclude that JFK was killed by conspirators, is cognitively impaired and/or complicit in the crime.”

    Overstatement like this doesn’t help uncover the facts of the assassination. Its likely effect, in my view, is simply to harden the opinions of those it offends.

    I do agree, however, that a reasonable survey of the historical record leads unavoidably to the conclusion that the Warren Commission got it wrong when it said Lee Harvey Oswald, acting alone, killed John F. Kennedy. There is simply no factual basis, which would withstand cross examination, to support this proposition.

  3. Alan Dale says:

    ^ Jeff, important correction:

    I believe that quote is from Charles Drago, not Phil Dragoo.

    Alan

  4. Tim Gratz says:

    Well put, Jeff. Could not agree with you more.
    Drago has made that remark before. How can anyone who disagrees with the truth as we are sure of it be “complicit in the crime”? Not only is his remark offensive it is also nonsensical.

    Bugliosi is dead wrong on this issue but to argue that Bugliosi is cognitively impaired is obviously ridiculous. The same thing can be said about many others who cannot see what is so obvious to us.
    E.g. Professor McAdams. The alternative that they are indeed intelligent and know there was a conspiracy but for whatever motive are putting forth arguments that they know are false is offensive.

    I find it hard to believe that any person of intelligence can agree with the thesis of th Warren Report but my difficulty in understanding that does not give me the liberty to impugn anyone’s intelligence or patriotism.

  5. D. Olmens says:

    A shame. I could imagine a Wikipedia style system working well as a useful and interesting way to organise and access the plethora of information associated with the case. However, that comment and the manner in which it is highlighted is no way to start a discussion about history. The statement leaves the authors open to charges of bias right from the outset. If you want to make a case for a particular issue, dismissing anyone holding opposing views as either mentally deficient or complicit in criminality is not a persuasive approach. It would in all likelihood prove to be counter-productive, turning away those who might otherwise be open to persuasion or who might simply have a passing interest in the case. Unless the authors adopt a more balanced approach I think I’ll give WikiSpooks a miss. Zealotry is unattractive.

  6. Clarence Carlson says:

    Worse yet, it is a form of intellectual dishonesty. The best writings on the JFK assassination simply present the best evidence and let the reader draw their own conclusions. This comment suggests that we can’t be trusted to make our own determinations but, rather, should review the evidence with a preconceived notion about what happened. That is precisely what the Warren Commission did and it caused them to arrive at answers that are not even supported by their own evidence.

  7. While I believe C.D.’s statement was originally directed at equally abrasive Professor K.R., it is not conducive to beginning a dialog, and the DPF exists because of such intransigence, though there are a few joint projects we can all work on together besides freeing the files.

    Besides group projects that have been suggested and are underway – Joint Chronology Project, Updated Bibliography and new Master Index, we should post a digital copy of the Warren Report and then annotate it with cited sources, pointing out where it is wrong and what we have learned since then.

    The Annotated Warren Report could be an important contribution to the literature.

    BK

    • D. Olmens says:

      “The Annotated Warren Report could be an important contribution to the literature.”

      Sounds like a good idea to me. No doubt that would be a large undertaking, but allowing people to evaluate the differing arguments, for and against, as close as possible to the primary source material with proper citations, links, supporting information and so on, would be worthwhile.

  8. anonymous says:

    What’s wrong with Wikipedia?

    “It’s heartbreaking to realize Americans still do not the know the full story”

    How many Americans think that Osswald went to Mexico?

    -Mark Lane describes how David Phillips,( CIA chief, western hemisphere), admitted that LHO was not there: http://www.c-span.org/video/?315655-1/Lanea

    -Robert Tanenbaum Deputy Chief Counsel House Select Committee on Assassinations describes how documents from the FBI showed that David Phillips,( CIA chief, western hemisphere) perjured himself about Mexican CIA tapes of a LHO imposter being destroyed: (@30min) :
    http://www.c-span.org/video/?315655-3/Tanen

    -Third party assets don’t make it easy…

    Mark Lane also describes a blackout – having to leave the US in the early years (to Windsor Canada) to get access to the airwaves. Maybe a JFK Khan Academy like site might be a go-to place for educators and pundits.

    “is cognitively impaired and/or complicit in the crime.” – Why isn’t this deleted from the page?

  9. What exactly makes Philip Shenon one of the “best JFK authors”?

  10. Charles R. Drago says:

    My Dear Mr. Morley,

    Permit me, as its author, to take up your courteous invitation to “come again” – that is, to elucidate this suddenly controversial and, it appears, widely misinterpreted statement of fact:

    “Anyone with reasonable access to the evidence who does not conclude that JFK was killed by conspirators is cognitively impaired and/or complicit in the crime.”

    A bit of historical context may be in order. I first publicly shared the newly minted line at Jim Fetzer’s May, 1999 JFK conference in Duluth, Minnesota, at which I had been invited to offer formal commentary on presentations by George Michael Evica and Doug Horne. For whatever it may be worth to this exchange, I remember the prolonged, enthusiastic, positive response my words and their deeper meanings engendered from conference attendees in general and Honorary Program Chair Robert B. Livingston, M.D. in particular.

    Since that event, I have used the line in essays (e.g. “In the Blossom of Our Sins,” originally published in the journal “The Third Decade” and now available online, in the company of works by James Douglass, Vincent Salandria, Gaeton Fonzi and others, at John Kelin’s marvelous “Fifty” website [www.home.comcast.net/~jo”hnkelin/fifty/jump.html]) and, most recently, in my Introduction to George Michael Evica’s book-length study, “A Certain Arrogance: The Sacrificing of Lee Harvey Oswald and the Cold War Manipulation of Religions Groups by US Intelligence” (Trine Day, 2011).

    Now on to what for many writers – including this one – is that most loathsome task of excavating subtext.

    The primary objective of the cover-up of the JFK assassination conspiracy is to preserve doubt where none should exist regarding the nature of the crime. Whodunit? Conspirators or a lone nut?

    For the original conspirators and now their heirs, the point never was and never will be to convince anyone of anything. Rather, it has been and always will be to prevent the maturation of belief into certain knowledge.

    Do you agree, sir, that beyond all reasonable doubt and to the degree of metaphysical certitude, John Fitzgerald Kennedy was killed by criminal conspirators?

    If you do, then why not say so in the strongest possible terms?

    If you do, then how do you explain the steadfast belief in and advocacy of the “lone nut” lie among so many men and women ostensibly of sound mind and noble character?

    If those people have had access to and fairly and have thoroughly evaluated the evidence, to what do you attribute their fatally flawed “lone nut” conclusion?

    We remain, sir, at war with the killers of JFK – and RFK, MLK, and the untold millions around the world who to this very day present as the collateral damage of those assassinations.

    Choose a side, Mr. Morley, lest your Cass Sunstein comparison come home to roost.

    Sincerely,

    Charles R. Drago

    • D. Olmens says:

      “The primary objective of the cover-up of the JFK assassination conspiracy is to preserve doubt where none should exist regarding the nature of the crime. Whodunit? Conspirators or a lone nut?”

      Preserve doubt? I find that a strange suggestion and somewhat at odds with the historical record when it comes to the “official” account of the assassination. The WC in particular is not exactly ambivalent. Why would preserving doubt be the primary objective of the cover-up? Wouldn’t the aim of any cover-up be to preserve the certainty of Oswald’s guilt? That would seem a more effective strategy if the conspirators are attempting to push competing theories to the margins. Surely promoting doubt would only serve to aid the development and dispersion of alternative explanations?

      If the conspirators wanted to preserve doubt, the obvious approach would be to promote dozens and dozens of alternative explanations in the hope of confusing the general public through obfuscation. In which case, you’d have to assume that the vast majority of conspiracy writers and researchers are in fact acting against their stated aims. I struggle to believe that is true. If the conspirators are using this approach one might come to the conclusion that you and your website are instruments of the cover-up.

      “For the original conspirators and now their heirs, the point never was and never will be to convince anyone of anything.”

      Again, I find that a very, very curious suggestion.

      “If you do, then how do you explain the steadfast belief in and advocacy of the “lone nut” lie among so many men and women ostensibly of sound mind and noble character?”

      I’d argue the explanation is quite simple. The people to which you refer are simply not persuaded by the theories put forward to date. There is no criminality or insanity required. The hectoring and unbalanced approach of some theorists probably doesn’t help either.

      “We remain, sir, at war with the killers of JFK – and RFK, MLK, and the untold millions around the world who to this very day present as the collateral damage of those assassinations.”

      That’s a rather extreme viewpoint. One that I suspect is not shared by all that many people.

      “Choose a side, Mr. Morley, lest your Cass Sunstein comparison come home to roost.”

      I think you’re going about this the wrong way.

    • Jonathan says:

      Charles R. Drago,

      How about this instead:

      The Warren Report, especially its conclusions, are a fraud upon the American people. Anyone who has examined the record who does not share this view has not examined the record thoroughly and reasonably, in my opinion.

      • Vasilis says:

        So what you are trying to say – please correct me if i am wrong – people like Bugliosi, Posner, Dale Myers, Gary Mack, Paul May, to name a few, support the WC fraud, just because
        “They have not examined the record thoroughly and reasonably?”

        • Jonathan says:

          Yes, I am saying that. Thoroughly means not selectively. Reasonably means with an open, unbiased mind.

          Posner’s “Case Closed” is a model of selective and unreasonable examination of the record. Selective and unreasonable examination (and interpretation) of the record underlie the works of the parties you name, in my view.

          • vasilis says:

            I believe you are playing with words, but let’s agree for just now. The real question is why they do that. What is their motive. Who guides them

          • Jonathan says:

            Vasilis,

            Thanks for your comment.

            I do not play with words. I am an extensively published writer, a lawyer, and an engineer. I take words and their use as seriously as anyone here. I attempt to write with precision.

            To your real questions, why do they do that? Who guides them?

            I don’t know why Warren Report supporters say what they do. I think some are honest. I think others are dishonest, for their own, unstated reasons.

          • Vasilis says:

            Unstated reasons? You are intelligent and educated enough to deduce them. I don’t believe that they woke up one morning and said “well, we have nothing else to do, why not go and defend the WC to pass our spare time?”

        • TLR says:

          Bugliosi probably supports the WC for ideological/political reasons, as do many liberals (like Chris Matthews, Anthony Lewis, etc). Posner is just a shill, and will support anything he is paid to support.

          The vast majority of WC supporters, across the political spectrum, have various ideological agendas they are trying to prop up or careers they are trying to preserve.

          The truth about JFK, RFK, MLK and many other episodes in our history just isn’t politically convenient for many people to deal with.

      • Charles R. Drago says:

        Jonathan,

        “Opinions” are precisely what the cover-up is designed to perpetuate.

        CONSPIRATORS killed JFK. This is not my “opinion.” Rather, it is a statement of evidence-based fact and an articulation of my certain knowledge of the true nature of the crime.

        Further, and to the best of my ability to judge, Messrs. Bugliosi and Posner, among others of their ilk, have indeed examined the evidence thoroughly and reasonably in service to their missions to support the LN lie and excoriate those who courageously expose it.

        Be wary — VERY wary — of self-proclaimed “fair and accurate” JFK researchers who would prioritize civil discourse and handkerchiefs-in-the-sleeves courtesies over demands for truth and justice.

        Were tender mercies evident in Dealey Plaza that day?

        And so I am compelled to ask you again, Mr. Morley: Do you agree that beyond all reasonable doubt and to the degree of metaphysical certitude, John Fitzgerald Kennedy was killed by criminal conspirators?

        Charles R. Drago

        • Jonathan says:

          Charles,

          I’m on your side. Sentiment and all. But as a lawyer, I want facts that can be laid in front of a judge and be admitted as evidence at trial.

          Much of the so-called evidence in the JFK case would be excluded from evidence at trial. JFK’s shirt and suit coat would be admitted. C.E. 399 would be excluded.

          Certain FBI reports would be admissible, as government documents, but would be subject to cross-exam.

          I don’t have an agenda, Charles. Except to get the truth.

          • Charles R. Drago says:

            For Jonathan and Mr. Kirsch:

            Many critically important questions regarding the JFK assassination conspiracy remain unanswered. And if we are to have the slightest chance of discovering those answers, our minds must indeed remain open.

            But the “conspiracy or LN?” question has been answered. Beyond all doubt and to the degree of metaphysical certitude.

            Doubt regarding the basic nature of the crime remains the sine qua non for the perpetuation of the JFK assassination cover-up.

            I humbly recommend that you research what has come to be known as the Evica-Drago model for the JFK conspiracy. It is divided into three major sections — Sponsors, Facilitators, Mechanics, with the middle level extensively sub-divided — and was created to provide a valid and workable investigative context.

            But make no mistake: Our model is predicated upon the TRUTH of conspiracy.

            So by all means avail yourselves of reasonable access to the evidence. Study it carefully.

            But wallow in doubt regarding the conspiracy/LN “question” at our own peril — and at the peril of truth and justice.

            As for Mr. Morley: I’m not waiting breathlessly for his answer.

          • vasilis says:

            I believe we need to focus on the task at hand, the conspiracy and its instigators. It is not Charles Drago that you should accuse but the conspirators. Mr. Drago is a proven truth seeker and the Evica/Drago model is of great importance.
            With regret i have concluded that the real conspirators should sleep carefree knowing that their identity will remain forever obscure. I am convinced that 50 years from now our children will debate the same things all over again. I will like to remind you Gaeton Fonzi’s famous cry:”We know who killed President Kennedy. Why don’t you?”

    • Donna Parsons says:

      So Mr. Drago knows that President Kennedy died at the hands of conspirators. And he says so. Well, I know it too because I have reasonable access to the evidence and I am not cognitively impaired. And for his trouble he becomes the villain and people are content to debate the already settled issue rather than fight the enemy whose shadows darken our lives. What is it gonna take for you to show a tenth of the courage that JFK showed when he confronted the forces that killed him? Is Morley,s profile one of courage or not? Standing by.

      • vasilis says:

        Now Now Donna, and assuming that your question is towards me. You are leading the conversation and try to put words in my mouth. Where in all of my replies did i say or mention anything about Mr. Morley?
        As for the profile in courage i am not the right person to ask but Carolyne Kennedy. If you insist though my personal preference was, is and will be Jim Garrison. Second best is Gaeton Fonzi.

        • Charles R. Drago says:

          Ms. Parsons is unknown to me, Vasilis, but my interpretation of her post leads me to conclude that she was not addressing you.

          At least I hope she wasn’t. Based on the positioning of her post, she most likely was reacting to Messrs. Morley and Kirsch.

  11. Robert says:

    Good luck. The only think conspiracy theorists agree on is that they all hate the Warren Report. How many shooters and suspects have conspiracy theorists identified over the years? Will you identify them all as potential suspects? What about the ones who are still alive? One accusation against John Siegenthaler nearly destroyed Wikipedia. Enjoy the lawsuits.

    • Jonathan says:

      It’s not my job as a Warren Report critic to identify shooters or suspects; and I’m not interested in doing this.

      I’d be pleased if the U.S. government embraced the finding of the HSCA that the Warren Commission did a woefully inadequate job of pursuing leads possibly pointing toward conspiracy.

      I’d also be pleased if the MSM would stop perpetuating factual inaccuracies and false impressions about JFK and the assassination.

      • D. Olmens says:

        “It’s not my job as a Warren Report critic to identify shooters or suspects; and I’m not interested in doing this.”

        Why not? If you’re going to claim there is an alternative explanation to the official record I’d argue it’s somewhat essential to provide some kind of clarification as to who was involved. Or is it because you simply can’t do that? I’ve noticed a recent trend amongst researchers to try and step around this question. To cite one example, I heard DiEugenio on BlackOpRadio last year say something to the effect of “We’ve moved past that” in respect to this question. As if it’s somehow not necessary to provide any kind of clarification. In my view that is a very poor response to a challenging question. This is the one question you’d reasonably expect most people would ask if you told them the official record is wrong. Perhaps it might be helpful to have some kind of answer, rather than saying that this not something you’re interested in?

        Regarding an earlier comment you made in this thread, I do agree with your point about overstatement and it’s counter-productive effects. Well said.

  12. Vasilis says:

    I don’t think that Mr. Drago’s statement undermines anything. On the contrary people like Shenon undermine everything.

  13. John says:

    I concur completely with Mr. Charles R. Drago and applaud his courage to unequivocally state his convictions. He has spoken the truth and should be commended, not derided. Timidity is one of things that has allowed this matter to be swept under the rug.

  14. Dave says:

    Speaking of things WIKI: there must be honest folks out there who are, or were, privy to key classified or otherwise undisclosed documentation about the JFK assassination – who have seen relevant evidence in Secret Service, FBI, CIA, ONI, NARA, NSA, IRS and other govt. agency files – and consider it their patriotic duty to disclose what they know about a 50-year-old presidential assassination “cold case” to the progressive media. In the honorable tradition of the Pentagon Papers, Deep Throat, Iran-Contra, and Snowden. Because relying on the CIA for declassification and disclosure clearly hasn’t worked.
    What kind of info cannot withstand public disclosure 50 years after the event? “Not in your lifetime” indeed….

  15. Phil Dragoo says:

    Walter Duranty won a Pulitzer prize denying Stalin’s famine which killed millions of Ukrainians. Joseph Alsop said, “Lying was Duranty’s stock in trade.” Malcolm Muggeridge called Duranty “the greatest liar I ever knew.” Angleton described himself as a member of the small group of the world’s greatest liars. Such is the nature of the perennial defenders of the infamous President’s Commission, driven as it was by Katzenbach’s a priori directive.

    Must we continue to abide the intentional revision of history required to frame Oswald and deny the frontal nature of the headshot, holding the lone gunman propagandists harmless despite their intellectual dishonesty?

    In Jim DiEugenio’s Reclaiming Parkland is a summation of the massive fraud foisted upon America by Vincent Bugliosi’s hubris that “if Oswald didn’t kill Kennedy then Kennedy wasn’t killed.”

    Gerald McKnight has shown the FBI under Hoover and the Warren Commission under Ford and Dulles knew its conclusions were a priori and based on doors closed to genuine investigation.

    There is no statute of limitations on murder, and Oswald, being absent the accused location, having not fired the alleged weapon, having been unable to inflict a fatal frontal wound from any point behind is the undoing of the Commission and its official downstream.

    To attack Charles Drago for observing what the majority of Americans and the greater-still majority of citizens of the world have known for a half century is to delay truth and justice.

  16. Andrea Skolnik says:

    Just coming to this post this evening I did not see it when it was posted the beginning of the year .
    Just wanted to commment that I see little difference in the way that Charles phrased his statement and what Sylvia Meagher called Accessories After The Fact.
    The result of researchers being polite and politically correct and weighing everything they write in reference to this murder has been that the passon of the original critics has been dimminished and nearly forgotten .

    We can not on the one hand praise the original critics for their zeal, while with the other hand stifle current researchers.
    We can not admonish one be caustious lest their terms be taken wrong when the desired result of their words is to expose these accessories after the fact and draw public attention to the theft of their democracy.

    Is that not what this webpage is supposed to be all about ??

  17. lysias says:

    One of the books I am currently reading is The Great Game of Genocide: Imperialism, Nationalism, and the Destruction of the Ottoman Armenians, about the genocide of the Armenians in 1915-22, by Donald Bloxham, a lecturer in 20th-century history at the University of Edinburgh. The excellent, well-researched, well-sourced book is published by the Oxford University Press.

    The author states, in my opinion correctly, that, just like historians who deny the reality of the Holocaust, historians who deny that the Armenians were the victims of a genocide are operating in bad faith. Isn’t that the kind of statement that you say historians should never make?

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