Biggest JFK Assassination Conspiracy Theorist Was RFK
David Talbot in “JFK Assassination: CIA and New York Times are Still Lying To Us” sums up our (but not OUR) media’s recent sentimental and titillating but shallow and manipulative coverage of the circumstances surrounding the assassination of John F. Kennedy in Dallas 50 years ago.
According to Talbot the American people are encouraged to ignore and deny 50 years of cognitive dissonance regarding an assassination with such gobsmackingly suspicious circumstances having been and still being clumsily and insultingly swept under the rug by both an ever more profoundly amoral government as well as an ever more profoundly amoral media. A media willing to enthrall the population with a “nothing to see here nor will there ever be, so let’s move along without ever seriously calling for truth and accountability from our (BUT NOT OUR) government.” A media asking us to once again ignore the unignorable. A media willing to mock, minimize, deny, slander courageous messengers of truth and those simply conscience awakened enough to demand it. To cheer on the punishment and or persecution of real patriots and human rights activists. I give you Manning, Assange and Snowden as three heroic examples. There are others, but don't expect the media to broadcast them unless in a negative light.
We give over our tax dollars, our trust and power to a government perpetually willing to lie to us. We give our attention and trust to a media that perpetually distracts from our lying government's anti-citizen policies, even jingoistically defending its right to perpetrate them.
How much of what the government determines is “classified” is really “over-classified” and hides evidence of criminality?
Most of us oblige the propagandizing media and betraying government by bobbleheadly accepting inadequate communication and misinformation despite the sirens of cognitive dissonance re-triggered over and over by subsequent national tragedies and cover ups such as those involving MLK's and RFK's deaths and the nightmare of 9/11.
We’ll never know, we’ll never know, we’ll never know. That’s the mocking-bird media refrain this season as we commemorate the 50th anniversary of America’s greatest mystery – the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. New York Times executive editor Jill Abramson ... could only conclude that there was some “kind of void” at the center of the Kennedy story.
Adam Gopnik was even more vaporous in the Nov. 4 issue of the New Yorker, turning the JFK milestone into an occasion for a windy cogitation on regicide as cultural phenomenon.
Of course, constantly proclaiming “we’ll never know” has become a self-fulfilling prophecy for the American press. It lets the watchdogs off the hook, and excuses their unforgivable failure to actually, you know, investigate the epic crime.....
All this artful dodging about the murder of President Kennedy began, of course, nearly 50 years ago with the Warren Commission ....
Talbot regards the Warren report that concluded that Lee Harvey Oswald was operating alone in the assassination as a “notorious symbol of official coverup.”
He cites Philip Shenon’s new book, “A Cruel and Shocking Act” that declares that the investigation of the John F. Kennedy assassination “was immediately taken over by the very government agencies — the CIA, FBI and Secret Service — that had the most to hide when it came to the assassination.”
In the years following the Warren Report’s release, several of the commissioners and staff members distanced themselves from their own report and publicly criticized the manifold deceptions of the agencies on which they had relied, namely the FBI and CIA.
I found most interesting Talbot's focus on Robert Kennedy's situation at the time of his brother's assassination put forward by another writer/analyzer of the event, Howard Willens, in "HIstory Will Prove Us Right":
For his part, Willens, who had been loaned out to the Warren Commission by Robert Kennedy’s Justice Department, reveals new information about the attorney general and his troubled relationship with the official investigation into his brother’s death. RFK resolutely kept his distance from the proceedings of the Warren Commission — which was stacked with RFK’s political enemies and reported to a new president with whom he had a poisonous relationship.
But, as Willens reveals, Kennedy did briefly insert a lawyer on the Warren Commission staff – in addition to Willens himself. This Kennedy mole used his position on the commission to dig into possible connections between the JFK assassination and the Mafia-connected Teamster leader Jimmy Hoffa, another mortal enemy of RFK.
As soon as he had heard the devastating news from Dallas on the afternoon of Nov. 22, 1963, Attorney General Robert Kennedy immediately suspected that his brother had been the victim of a plot. RFK believed that the shadowy assassination operation against Fidel Castro – a dark alliance between the CIA and the Mafia – had somehow been turned against President Kennedy. When Dallas nightclub operator Jack Ruby stunned the nation by shooting Oswald on national TV while he was being escorted through the basement of the Dallas Police Department, Bobby and his Justice Department investigators quickly turned their attention to Ruby. Within hours, RFK’s men found that Ruby had numerous connections to organized crime.
So Talbot reveals that after Ruby gunned down Oswald in the very bowels of a police department building (and, again, incredibly and conveniently recorded for national viewing), two Warren Commission lawyers -- Griffin and Hubert -- who were assigned to investigate Jack Ruby and soon came to suspect a Dallas police sergeant in charge of Oswald’s security for deliberately extending Ruby proximity for his kill were abruptly pulled from doing further investigation. Talbot goes on to reveal that Griffin even “was reprimanded for daring to confront the Dallas police sergeant with his suspicions. Warren even publicly apologized to the cop when he was called to testify before the commission in Washington.”
Talbot sums up the sensibility and circumstantial evidence of Shenon’s and Willens' insights:
The post-assassination Washington revealed in these two books brings to mind ancient Rome. The capital’s chambers and private clubs were filled with dark whispers. The most powerful elements of government maneuvered to make sure their deepest secrets would not be revealed. Royal blood had been spilled and the new regime was determined that the public must never know why.
In the end, Shenon and Willens do little to further enlighten the public about the who, what or why of the Kennedy assassination. A growing historical consensus now sees JFK as presiding over a bitterly divided government, with Kennedy and his peace-minded inner circle on one side and a war-hungry Cold War establishment on the other.
Even humdrum Kennedy historian Robert Dallek has now signed on to this view, with a new book that argues JFK’s biggest enemies were not Communist leaders but his own generals and espionage chiefs. This is a sobering conclusion, of course, because it provides a possible explanation for the bloody regime change in Dallas.
These dark waters are simply too ominous for authors like Shenon and Willens to explore. Despite his willingness to expose the Warren Commission’s tortured process, Shenon cannot bring himself to condemn its conclusions. At the end of the day, he remains a product of the New York Times – a newspaper that rushed to embrace the Warren Report months before it was even completed and, as Abramson’s wordy screed attests, is still more interested in ridiculing and marginalizing even the most credible conspiracy researchers than in getting at the truth. Mainstream journalists know that – even 50 years (!) later — they don’t dare go beyond the safe confines of “we’ll never know,” or they won’t be appearing on “Meet the Press” any time soon.
Fifty years later, Willens still can’t offer a credible motive for why Oswald supposedly killed Kennedy. In his book, he reveals that the commission assigned staff lawyer Wesley Liebeler to write a memo on Oswald’s “Possible Personal Motive” – but the panel found Liebler’s effort so unconvincing that it was rejected. In the end, the Warren Commission decided against offering a definitive motive for the murder, leaving the country forever puzzled by the young man who insisted he was a “patsy.”
Talbot insists that our government should finally “come clean” and provide its people with what is legally theirs -- “every piece of classified information relating to the Kennedy assassination. Failing that, if the CIA continues to defy the law, the nation needs another Edward Snowden.”
The assassination of President Kennedy and its subsequent coverup was a triumph for the rapidly growing U.S. national security state. Fifty years later, that surveillance colossus increasingly treats the American people as if we’re enemies of the state. We can begin to take control of our future by finally demanding ownership of our past.
[cross-posted on open salon]