Dan Alcorn illuminates an underappreciated aspect of November 22, 1963. President Kennedy and his government had been preparing for a succession emergency for some time.
When President Kennedy was shot in Dallas, our nuclear weapons system would have needed urgently to know who was in command, and when word of the President’s death came, the system would immediately switch command to the Vice President, now the successor commander-in-chief. The swearing-in ceremony is a mere formality– power would have passed when word of the President’s death was first received. Standby authority for military officers to use nuclear weapons existed if the President or designated successor
Honest recollections from Vince Palamara, the Secret Service researcher extraordinaire. He bought the official JFK story for a while. Nothing wrong with that. Millions did. Then he took a closer look and changed his mind. I like his candor about how it happened. He writes:
James Fetzer is an odious, obnoxious man. I met him via JFK assassination discussions and found him knowledgable about certain facts but rather unhinged. He thrived on picking fights. He impugned me as a CIA collaborator who was hiding the truth about deceased undercover operative George Joannides. I reminded him that the allegation was stupid because, if it wasn’t for my reporting, he wouldn’t know anything about Joannides.
I’m happy to report that the courts have punished Fetzer for his vile conspiracy theories about the Sandy Hook school shooting.
The focus of the Wisconsin lawsuit was a 455-page book, titled “Nobody Died at Sandy Hook: It Was a FEMA Drill to Promote Gun Control,” which claimed the massacre at Sandy Hook was staged by the federal government to promote tighter gun control measures. Among other things, the book claimed that the school had been abandoned years before a gunman killed 20 first graders and six staff members.
Dr. Robert McClelland, the surgeon who oversaw the effort to save President Kennedy’s life in 1963, died earlier this month at age 89. In his interviews, you sense a man of considerable dignity, humility, and integrity. It comes as no surprise that he self-published an anthology of writings on surgery to which thousands of doctors subscribed. He was both a teacher and doctor, an instructor and a healer. And it is those qualities that make McClelland one of the most important witnesses to JFK’s assassination.
In 1963, McClelland was 34 years old. He had just become the chief of surgery at Dallas’s Parkland Hospital. When the mortally wounded JFK was brought to Trauma Room One, McClelland stood over the dying president and participated in the efforts to save him. He observed the president’s fatal head wound for about 10 minutes from a distance of less than two feet.
“My God,” he recalled saying to his colleagues. “Have you seen the back of his head. There’s a wound in the back of his head that’s about five inches in diameter.”
A recent Daily Mail article on JFK’s assassination highlighted James Johnson’s new book, Murder Inc.: The CIA Under President John F. Kennedy which argues Cuba government may have been involved.
There are many reasons to doubt this conspiracy theory, which I detailed in this 2012 article for Salon. Those reasons still apply. But Johnson is right about one thing: The central role of James Angleton, CIA counterintelligence chief in obstructing the JFK investigation is highly suspicious. Those suspicions, in fact, reached the highest levels of the CIA itself.
George Joannides, now deceased, was an undercover CIA officer based in Miami and New Orleans in 1963.
His actions provides strong evidence that certain Agency personnel manipulated Lee Harvey Oswald for propaganda purposes before and after President Kennedy was shot dead in Dallas on November 22, 1963.