Howard Willens corrects my mistakes

Howard Willens writes via email to correct a couple of mistakes in my Nov. 12 post, “Howard Willens weighs in on RFK’s suspicions of conspiracy.”  Let me quote him in full.

Willens: “You tell your audience that I prepared a document for the Attorney General labelled “Sworn Statement.” You obviously did not look at the actual document, which is labelled “Statement of Robert F. Kennedy.” Are you going to correct this error?

1) Yes, I am going to correct this error. I did look at the actual document, and it is indeed labelled “Statement of Robert F. Kennedy.” My assertion was based on the fact that the first paragraph of the statement refers to the Attorney General “having been duly sworn.” When I wrote the draft was “labelled” as a sworn statement, I meant labelled in the sense of prominently identified. My word choice is obviously poor, and my formulation was not accurate. It has been corrected.

Willens: “In addition, you report that the Attorney General ‘met with the Commission’ on June 4. He certainly did not meet with the Commission — in fact, whether he should or not was the subject of the meetings I describe in my two memoranda on this subject. It was on June 4 that I met with the Attorney General and Katzenbach; I forget whether Ed Guthman was at this final meeting. Are you going to correct this error?”

2) Yes, I am going to correct this error. By saying “Commission” I did not intend to refer to the seven commissioners but to the commission generically, meaning staffers. Again, my word choice was careless. The post has been corrected.

That said, I don’t think these errors fatally undermine my argument.

In the first instance, I wrote that RFK’s aides received a draft statement for RFK’s signature that referred to him being “sworn” and his aides rejected it. Willens says RFK himself did not reject the proposal for a “sworn” statement, which is true. I say his aides, acting on his behalf, rejected the proposal for a “sworn” statement — which is also true.

Phil Shenon emphasized this point in his Politico piece, and I agree with him. Readers can assess for themselves which statement is more significant to the issue of RFK and the conspiracy question.

In the second instance, the distinction between RFK meeting with “the Commission” or “a Commission staffer” is important, but it does not affect my point that RFK asked for further changes in the draft statement at this meeting. This request, I argued, indicated his desire to limit his testimony. The fact that RFK was not speaking to the Commission members themselves when seeking the changes, does not affect the fact that he sought them.

After correcting these errors, Willens goes on to write:

“Why you dredge up Katzenbach’s November memo is beyond me, except to discredit him I suppose. It has nothing to do with the issue at hand, namely, whether the Attorney General refused to submit an affidavit to the Commission or to appear to give sworn testimony. Contrary to your suspicion, there was no discussion at the meeting with Katzenbach and Guthman about a “sworn” statement or an “unsworn” one.”
To take the latter issue first, I do not suspect and did not write that I suspect that Katzenbach and Guthman had a “discussion” about whether the statement would be sworn or not. I wrote that Katzenbach and Guthman may have rejected the draft proposal for a “duly sworn” statement because they did not want to commit their boss to a sworn statement. They could have rejected the statement without being explicit about the reason for their rejection. I wrote that Willens had not considered this possibility. I still hope he will.
As for the “issue at hand,” Willens narrowly construes it as whether the statement would be sworn or not. I think the issue at hand was whether RFK’s statement about the possibility of conspiracy would be sworn or not. Willens cannot understand why I “dredge up” Katzenbach’s  November 25, 1963, memo in this context.
I hope I can assist his comprehension. In the memo the deputy attorney general stated — before the JFK assassination investigation had even begun — that “the public must be satisfied that Oswald was the assassin.” Willens says this has “nothing to do with the matter at hand.”
I disagree. I didn’t quote this memo to “discredit” Katzenbach. I quoted this memo so that readers can understand the mindset of a man who was representing RFK on the issue of how he should respond  to the Commission on the question of conspiracy. Within hours of the murder of the accused assassin by a man with organized crime connections who loathed Bobby Kennedy, Katzenbach sought to head off any consideration of the possibility of conspiracy and to convince the public of a proposition that was far from proven. When Willens met with Katzenbach seven months later, Katzenbach’s hasty conclusions about the conspiracy question and the need to convince the public that Oswald acted alone had not changed. His views were, in my opinion, relevant to the matter at hand. Willens disagrees. Again, readers can decide for themselves.

As I stated in my post, I hope that Willens will address the two additional questions that he posed but did not address in his post on HowardWillens.com.  To wit:

(2) Should Robert Kennedy have provided the Commission with the information he had regarding the CIA’s plans to assassinate Castro? and (3) At the time he was assassinated in 1968 did Robert Kennedy believe that his brother’s death was the result of a conspiracy contrary to the conclusion of the Warren Commission.

In his email to me, Willens wrote, “It seems obvious that any discussion of the second and third questions I identified would be similarly fruitless.”

I disagree. I think it is obvious that this exchange has been fruitful. It has corrected my mistakes and clarified our differences. I still hope Willens will share his views on questions 2) and 3).

 

 

4 comments

  1. Eric Hollingsworth says:

    I believe that RFK suspected conspiracy, if not in the assassination itself, then in the exploitation of the assassination in the furtherance of what we would call nowadays a neocon agenda. There could be no more, at the time, prominent exponents of that agenda than Allen Dulles and John McCloy. Respectively, but not exclusively, they were reponsible for the preservation of Nazis and the engenderment of the extractive model of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.

    So why were they given seats on the Warren Commission, when their actions were antithetical to JFK’s stated positions? I think the most important facts to keep in mind are that RFK was still Attorney General, in charge of the FBI, and that for the most part, the Johnson administration was still the Kennedy administration, including many people who were personally loyal to JFK.

    The public spectacle of Dulles and McCloy (who originally, and on record, suspected conspiracy) backing the Lone Gunman theory must have dealt a crushing blow to those who were salivating over the potential spoils of Cuba and beyond. If nothing else, it was a masterful counterstroke against those who would have used JFK’s assassination to lead the U.S. in the opposite direction from his clearly stated goals.

    In such a light, the Katzenbach Memo is no mystery, it is merely part of an attempt to protect JFK’s legacy. The real question is how Dulles and McCloy were swayed to participate in a coverup that must have set their plans back by many years.

    • Jonathan says:

      The anti-Castro Cubans wanted to exploit JFK’s murder, but it’s clear they weren’t behind the murder, any more than were the nuke-the-Soviets crowd.

      Oswald had been set up as the LONE assassin, the lone perp. A loner who had no associates. It was good enough for the plotters that JFK was dead and a lone nut was solely responsible.

      The Oswald-in-Mexico-City story was cooked up clumsily in a poor effort to implicate Cuba and the Soviet Union in JFK’s death. Anyone who buys this story is going to have red herring for dinner.

      JFK was dead, and that was always the purpose of the assassination.

      Cui bono? Not the mob, not Jimmy Hoffa. Not Cuba. Not the USSR. The arms makers? They win no matter who’s in the white house. The military? Hardly. The CIA? Hardly.

      • “Cui bono? Not the mob, not Jimmy Hoffa. Not Cuba. Not the USSR. The arms makers? They win no matter who’s in the white house. The military? Hardly. The CIA? Hardly.”~Jonathan

        Well then … who’s left?

        > Jimmy Hoffa was not “the mob”, he was just one member.

        > The arms makers win no matter who’s in the white house? Oh to the contrary, not if the cold war unfreezes to détente.

        > The military is in the same boat as the the arms makers, that’s why the term “military industrial complex”, and they would have had their power cut back by the same token by a general peace.

        > The Soviets? Now that is a very complex question. It was an excuse by Johnson to be sure, that their may have been Soviet or Cuban involvement. But if we look deeper into the larger game, the Soviet military industrial complex is in a parallel situation to the western counterpart. To be clear however, I do not think there was such Soviet involvement.

        > Not Cuba. Surely not, but the Anti-Castro Cubans clearly had motive.

        I think asserting there was no benefit to the CIA, is the most absurd of all on the list. And I think that the reason for my finding it so is too obvious to even go into it.
        \\][//

  2. David Regan says:

    I would be curious to hear Mr. Willens explanation of the April 27, 1964 memo from Norman Redlich to J. Lee Rankin.

    While attemting to determine timing of the three shots in relation to frames of the Zapruder film, Mr. Redlich states, “Our intention is not to establish the point with complete accuracy, but merely to substantiate the hypothesis which underlies the conclusions that Oswald was the sole assassin”.
    http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/wcsbt.htm

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

In seeking to expand the range of informed debate about the events of 1963 and its aftermath, JFKFacts.org welcomes comments that are factual, engaging, and civil. more

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

vape: suorin drop 100mg nicotine liquid vape squonk vape mtl liquid barn ecig study 2016 buying a vaporizer refillable cbd vape pen uncle junks ejuice simple ex squonk ecig sometimes not firing vapor lock car best coils for smok tfv4 spray on vapor barrier pen mods merrell vapor glove vs trail glove burst e juice ecig charging station voopoo 2 colors buy ecig products online uwell caliburn support ecig mod nebula buy best bubble gum flavored vape juice rant ecig juice best 18650 batterys for ecig mountain dew baja blast vape juice tea vape juice mixing salt nic with regular juice ecig and njot e cigarette starter kit deal where can i buy a vape x4 e cigarette atomize vape shop vaping negative effects eleaf lexicon kit new fda regulations on vaping 2019 lotus omega vape cdc says stop vaping voopoo box vs stick juul track order uwell ni200 coils baby prince vape e cigarette pen style starter kit smok 225 true vape las vegas tank holder vape alpine vapor no smok vaping pics uwell crown 3 tool ice cream flavored vape juice uwell nunchaku wont power on aspire nautilus kit voopoo rimfire rtais wvu private vaping wiki how to set voopoo drag to stealth smok stick price voopoo drag all black stix ecig

male enhancement: how to boost sexual stamina small girl having sex post ssri sexual dysfunction corpus cavernosum function cialis or viagra cialis best price super hard pills life enhancements products minoxidil side effects reddit can cialis cause heart attack viagra goes generic vitamins that make your penis bigger rhino ed pills dopamine supplements gnc gnc premature ejaculation hair loss prescription drugs penis bridge max test extreme what are male enhancement pills hard times for men natural testosterone booster herbs small soft penis multivitamin with testosterone booster supplements with sildenafil buy male extra sex positions to drive him crazy v max male enhancement reviews best viagra penis size for teenagers best test booster reviews military spending on viagra does testosterone increase sex drive walmart viagra pro t plus male enhancement pain meds for sale male enhancement growmax can creatine cause erectile dysfunction average male dick size partial erectile dysfunction booster meaning penis girls buy the blue pill drivein sex fat people penis ultra vital gold reviews best male erection supplement foreskin swollen male pinus how can i make extra money ed symptoms zhengongfu amazon d 03 capsule semenax volume enhancer pills the blood moon has spawned biosource labs penis harder bathmate hercules review penis hot

cbd oil: purekana cbd best cbd oil reddit cbd oil what is it cbd for acne scars cbd discount code pennsylvania cbd laws cbd legal in idaho yorkville animal control blue moon hemp can i take cbd oil with melatonin cbd and back pain difference between full spectrum cbd and isolate cbd oil green mountain what cbd is best for pain cbd weedmaps cbd cookbook marijuana thc cbd cbd tiredness smokable cbd herb does vaping cbd help with pain cbd help with sleep select cbd discount code cbd pitch deck cbd oil fairbanks pure spectrum cbd vape pen cbd images free how much cbd oil for fibromyalgia amazon uk customer service altus cbd pills review green mountain cbd oil chocolate mint sushi perth cbd rose essential oil cbd 0 thc is cbd hemp oil without thc legal in mississippi product online laguna smoke shop drudge report safety of cbd oil journal of clinical pharmacology shark tank pure cbd hash oil cures cancer who is it cannabis oil supplement cbd oil without thc for sale isolate direct sleep trial cbd blue label chinese percocet 10 is cbd oil legal in ny cbd oil serum where to buy cbd oil in arizona sode effectsnof cbd oil vaping can cbd oil help with asthma cbd oil drops kio cbd discount code can you buy cbd oil at publix pharmacy best bcd 2016 organic elixinol cbd oil review claws traduccion

weight loss: best cleanse for weight loss natural pills that help you lose weight teen weight loss program playboy diet pills weight loss clinic tampa vince weight loss 2016 weight loss surgery insurance where can i buy ace diet pills fatty liver weight loss diet plan weight loss doctors in maryland sushi for weight loss frozen poop pills weight loss 21 day fast weight loss medi weight loss plano weight loss pills for diabetics glaxosmithkline diet pills daily weight loss plan hypothyroid diet pills jump rope routine for weight loss quick weight loss centers dallas rapid weight loss shake starcaps diet pills best protein diet for weight loss which tea is good for weight loss chrisette michele weight loss struggling with weight loss weight loss pill works vitamin b shots weight loss mindfulness and weight loss violent j weight loss 2017 forskohlii weight loss what is the best weight loss pill good weight loss products fantastic keto pills best corset for weight loss colonial heights weight loss fat protein efficient weight loss type speed weight loss ultra weight loss pills diet pills azure weight loss pills gluten free diet pills japanese rapid weight loss diet pills quick weight loss in houston tx zantrax diet pills fat loss supplement diet pills hypothyroidism cleansing foods for weight loss diet pills pro ana local weight loss clinics prescription diet pills adipex weight loss surgery maryland diet pills getting pregnant weight loss treatments quick weight loss for vegetarians where can i buy thermadrol diet pills successful diets for quick weight loss chinese weight loss pills fruta planta

exam: 100% Real 9A0-302 Book Is Updated Daily, Most Important DMDI301 Practice Test For Sale, Examcollection 270-515 Test Pdf Sale, Exambible 650-294 Exam Dumps Pdf With The Knowledge And Skills, Provide Latest 1Y0-306 Vce 100% Pass With A High Score, Offer ECDL-ICDL-EXAM Sample Questions Online Store, 50% Discount ED0-002 Practice For Sale, We Provide QQ0-301 Certification Braindumps Guaranteed Success, Valid and updated HH0-280 Study Guide Book Sale, Provides Best HP0-J48 Exam Dumps Pdf with PDF and VCE Engine, Prep4sure HP0-S42 Certification Exam , Provide Discount HP3-C33 Prep Guide Are Based On The Real Exam, Download Latest HP2-B111 Exam Practice Pdf Guaranteed Success, Real HC-411-ENU Practice Test Pdf On Store, Valid and updated SU0-224 Practice For Download, 100% Pass Guarantee C2090-011 Ebook Pdf With Accurate Answers, Testking P2020-014 Test Engine Is The Best Material, Certforall 000-156 Questions And Answers Pdf Is The Best Material, Test-inside 000-581 Exam Guide Pdf 100% Pass With A High Score, Buy Discount P2090-075 Exam Practice Pdf For Sale, Most Important 070-529 Latest Dumps Sale, 100% Pass Guaranteed or Full Refund 70-549-CPLUSPLUS Prep Guide With Low Price, Latest Updated MB2-186 Study Guide Online, Pass4sure 070-583J Study Guides With Accurate Answers, Buy Latest 920-261 Exam Test Questions Is What You Need To Take, Welcome To Buy 1Z1-856 Online Exam Online, Sale Latest 1Z1-144 Exam Guide Pdf With Accurate Answers, Most Accurate 1Z1-204 Real Exam Is Your Best Choice, Money Back Guarantee RH-302 Study Material 100% Pass With A High Score,