(If there's a duplicate post--my apologies. . through a glitch, I apparently lost it. . but "as I was saying". . .).
Also note (5/25/13 -9:PM, PDT): I have edited this post to eliminate spelling errors, but also to include certain information about Oswald's two letters to his brother, mentioning the U-2.
* * * BELOW THIS POINT - - - MY EDITED and Augmented POST * * *
To begin with: the date on the Corbis photo (which is given as November 17, 1959), is incorrect.The correct date is October 31, 1959.
Here's the sequence (as I understand it) of what happened that. So let's start by going to calendar date October 31, 1959.
Sat., October 31, 1959:
At about 12:30-1240 PM local [Moscow] time, Oswald goes to the American Embassy, and has the encounter with Consul Snyder. (Note: according to an account in John Newman's book, Oswald and the CIA [see the author's Chapter #1 "Defection in Moscow"], LHO was well dressed. (Quoting from Newman: “Oswald was dressed immaculately, in a dark suit with a white shirt and tie—‘very businessman-looking,’ Snyder later recalled. But Snyder soon noticed odd things, like the fact that the man had no coat or hat on this brisk October thirty-first morning. . and then there were those thin, dressy white gloves that he wore into the room and removed rather deliberately as he came to a halt in front of Snyder’s desk.” (Newman, p. 2) Oswald, too referred to these gloves in his own diary entry of the moment he sat down: “I wait, crossing my legs and laying my gloves in my lap.” (ibid). Somehow—and it may have been from a personal conversation with John Newman, I have retained the impression that Oswald was not wearing “any old gloves” but the white gloves that were part of his USMC dress uniform
2. Oswald returns to his room at the Hotel Berlin
3. Later that afternoon, Korengold (of UPI) goes to Oswald's room; attempts to interview him. Keeps foot in door. etc. Oswald refuses. (FYI: There is a brief FBI Interview of Korengold somewhere in the 26 volumes. Much much shorter than this very interesting article he wrote in Bonjour Paris, which was published in November [I'm assuming that was the month] 2003).
4. Korengold returns to his office; tells Aline Mosby about Oswald, and what has just transpired.
5. Aline Mosby goes to LHO's room--with a camera--and does interview him. And she takes his picture. That's the photo of the nicely dressed Oswald, with suit, vest, tie, etc. now being sold by Corbis (and mis-dated as having been taken on November 17). At some point, and apparently wearing these same clothes, but this detail should be checked carefully, Oswald sat for a formal portrait at the Hotel Berlin. That's the "other" picture (or pictures) showing him nicely dressed).
6. Mosby's story is datelined 10/31/59 and runs in many newspapers--certainly on Sunday, November 1 (but perhaps also in late evening editions on Saturday night, 10/31/59. Not sure of that. But remember: Moscow is "nine hours ahead" of Dallas, for example, so there would probably have been plenty of time to make a late evening or "Xtra" edition of U.S.newspaper).
7. Mosby takes the picture that is now at Corbis (and which Corbis incorrectly states was taken on November 17, 1959)
7A: For the record: Another reporter, Goldberg, of the AP, also attempted to interview Oswald that same day. A brief FBI report about that is in the 26 Volumes). His encounter is also mentioned in Epstein's LEGEND.
8. Two weeks later, on Saturday, November 14, Oswald calls Mosby (at the Moscow UPI office) and invites her to come over and interview him. By that time, he is being treated much more sympathetically by the Soviets and is at the Hotel Metropole (remember: LHO attempted suicide on 10/21, and went to Botkin Hospital. When he was released, circa 10/28, the Soviets transferred him from the Hotel Berlin to the Hotel Metropole).
9. This Mosby interview was widely published on Sunday, 11/15/59, and a copy of it --as it ran in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram (with the headline Fort Worth Defector Confirms Red Beliefs)--is Warren Commission Exhibit 2716. The same story ran in he Dallas Morning News (again, on 11/15/59, but this was not published in he Warren Commission's 26 volumes) under the title: "Fort Worth Boy Tells Why He Left U.S.") And, fyi, Oswald's own "Historic Diary" entry of that same encounter with Mosby is WCE 2717.
10. In this interview, Mosby said that LHO had a "chop-top" haircut.
11. I don't know (for certain) if Mosby took any pictures of Oswald on this occasion, but I don't believe she did.
12. On Monday, November 16, Priscilla Johnson (McMillan) learned about Oswald being at the Metropole Hotel (where she, too, was staying), and she then arranged to interview him that evening, and spent some hours with Oswald. But note this important difference: Priscilla Johnson (McMillan) was with North American News Alliance (NANA), not a wire service, and so her story (as Korengold notes in his Bonjour Paris piece) was distributed by mail, and to a limited number of subscribers; and so, when it appeared, was published many days--if not several weeks--later. (Also note: no photos were taken by McMillan).
Anyway. . .my main purpose in setting out to write this post was simply to note that Corbis is selling a historically important picture of Oswald which is incorrectly dated. Also, it is very likely that this same picture is in the Kennedy collection at the National Archives, but I'm not sure of that at all. (And, even if its there, its perhaps same picture, but an inferior copy. I just don't know).
I also find it very interesting--and indeed, most informative--that Korengold and McMillan happened to be together on November 22, 1963, when the news arrived of Oswald being arrested in Dallas--so of course they swapped stories and recollections, and of course they "matched". Remember: they both saw Oswald on the same day (October 31, 1959) and within minutes of one another.
Priscilla McMillan's story versus Mosby's Story (per the Warren Commission materials)
Two other things are worth noting (and keep in mind that Priscilla McMillan was deposed as a Warren Commission witness, whereas Aline Mosby was not). In the case of Mosby, there is simply a WC exhibit of the text of her notes, and draft that she wrote, just after the assassination [see CE 1385]. But no testimony--which I have always found weird. Obviously, she was just as (historically) important as McMillan, and certainly should have testified.
Now, on to these points:
(a) The Priscilla Johnson story and the Aline Mosby story are almost line by line similar. So--essentially--Oswald said the same thing to both of these reporters just days apart. Consequently, I have never understood why so much suspicion is focused on Priscilla Johnson (McMillan) --for having once attempted to join the CIA, or whatever the details are--when a nearly identical story was published by Aline Mosby, and no one raises an eyebrow. My point is that Priscilla--imho--has come in for a lot of unjustified criticism and suspicion. As far as I'm concerned, its entirely unwarranted. Each reporter simply wrote down what Oswald told them, and then published based on that information. So their two stories represent written accounts of two conversations that Oswald had with these two journalists to days apart. But. . please do read on, because there's plenty of questions that can be raised about Aline Mosby, and they are potentially far more important than the rather unwarranted barrage of criticism (unwarranted criticism, imho) that has been aimed at McMillan--and in writing this, I'm referring to the two stories that each journalist wrote in the aftermath of their two encounters with Oswald--Mosby, on Saturday, 11/14/59, and McMillan (then Priscilla Johnson), on 11/16/59.
(b ) There is reasonable evidence that Oswald--somehow--got from Minsk to Moscow, and (perhaps) attended one of the three days (or part of one of the three days) of the sensational U-2 trial of Gary Powers in August, 1960 (8/17, 8/18, 8/19)--based on the fact that he twice mentioned to Robert Oswald (in letters written in Feb., 1962, after Powers was in the news, because he had been exchanged for Soviet spy Rudolph Abel) that he had "seen" Oswald in Moscow. I don't know how Oswald somehow managed to get to Moscow (if he did). I'm just pointing out that that's a natural inference, based on what he wrote his brother.
Here are the two quotes from two consecutive letters to his brother, Robert.
The first, from LHO's letter to his brother on 2/15/62 (the birth date of his first child, June, and the proximate cause for his writing to his brother, congratulating him on now being an uncle): I heard over the Voice of America that they released Powers the U-2 spy plane pilot. That's big news where you are, I suppose. He seemed to be a nice, bright American-type fellow, when I saw him in Moscow." (WCE 315; underling added)
Then came a second mention, in his next letter to Robert: I heard a "Voice of America" program about the Russians releasing Powers. I hope they aren't going to try him in the U.S. [for] anything. (WCE 316).
So much for Lee Oswald mentioning Gary Powers. But now, also significant (and potentially more important), here's my next point. . .
(c ) Aline Mosby almost certainly covered that trial. (She was, after all, one of UPI's reporters). So first of all, if Oswald was at the U-2 trial, and if Mosby covered it, and if she saw him there, the absence of any mention of the "former defector" being there would of course be significant. And that's just conjecture. Because I can't prove Oswald was at the trial, and I have no direct evidence (at this juncture) that Aline Mosby in fact covered the Powers trial, although its likely she did. In any event, let's now move on to 1961, at which point Mosby was under contract to write a book for Random House, about her experiences in Russia.
Aline Mosby had two occasions in which she spoke with Oswald--first, on October 31 (as explained in detail by Korengold, in his 2003 Bonjour Paris piece); and then again on Saturday, November 14, 1959, which resulted in the longer story she did and which was published in various US newspapers on Sunday, November 15, 1959. And yet, when it came time to write her book about her time as a journalist in Moscow--The View from No. 13 People's Street, published by Random House in 1962 --she mentions nothing about Oswald. The jacket of her book sports the statement: "The only woman correspondent in Moscow reports on Russia, and the Russians." The book is 308 pages long and, as noted, was published by Random House. It is no longer in print, but has chapters on all sorts of things.
How come there's no mention of Oswald? FWIW: For quite a few years now, I have suspected that --somehow--CIA Director Allen Dulles (who was "connected to everyone" [my quotes] and had great connections in the world of publishing) somehow heard about her book and (somehow) requested that she not write about Oswald; or, if pages or paragraphs were already in the book about LHO, that they be deleted. Of course, I can't prove this, but I just don't understand how such an interesting and newsworthy person as Oswald, whom one writes about on two previous occasions (someone interesting enough that the reporter even takes his picture, and includes that in her wire service story!) is then omitted from such a memoir.
So much for my thoughts on the late Aline Mosby. But now let's turn to Priscilla McMillan, and her writings on the JFK case.
WHY PRISCILLA McMILLAN CAME TO BE SO DEEPLY INVOLVED IN THE KENNEDY CASE
(and the source of her "Oswald did it" viewpoint)
(d ) With regard to McMillan: I don't wish to dredge up personal matters (unnecessarily), but it should be pointed out that she had a personal relationship with Senator Kennedy, back in the mid -fifties, and was--to speak frankly--in love with him. (Please note: Priscilla Johnson --as she was then known--knew Senator Kennedy well enough to be visiting him in his hospital room, along with JFK's sisters, when he was recovering from his major back surgery). Of what relevance is this? Well, here's why its important.
Priscilla's Initial Reaction to Hearing the News of President Kennedy's Murder
Priscilla's reaction--upon hearing the news of Kennedy's murder (and it was devastating to her, on a personal level)--was along these lines: "OMG: I knew both the man who was murdered and the man who murdered him! I personally knew both Jack Kennedy himself, as well as this young man who is (apparently) his assassin." And --I believe (and I think she has almost said as much, in a writing of hers that I have read, perhaps in Marina and Lee)--that she was then driven to understand how this young man with whom she had spent a snowy evening in Moscow, on November 16, 1959, could then, just four years later, do something like that. For her, it was an existential mystery of sorts: How Lee Oswald, who she thought she understood fairly well, had come to assassinate the man she had loved, John F. Kennedy. So that's how it began. That's the root (and the origins, psychologically) of Priscilla's interest in Kennedy's assassination, and Lee Oswald as his assassin.
How That Led to Her Involvement With Marina Oswald
And so of course it was natural for her to seek a link-up with Marina, which then resulted in Marina and Lee published in 1977. When someone we love is murdered, we want to know "what happened?" and "Why?" That's what happened with Priscilla McMillan. Again I remind anyone reading this who insists on attempting to "explain" Priscilla McMillan's 1959 writings as part of some nefarious CIA scheme: what she wrote (and published) in November 1959 (and in December, 1959) is no different than what Aline Mosby wrote (and published) on November 15, 1959. These two reporters interviewed Lee Oswald two days apart; and he essentially said the same thing to both.
The Important Difference Between McMillan and (the late) Aline Mosby
But note this important difference: When Mosby wrote (and published) her 1962 memoir about her Moscow days ("The View from No. 13 People's Street," published in 1962 by Random House, and over 300 pages long) there is not a word about Oswald in it. And that--as far as I'm concerned--is a serious example of a "dog that does not bark." To repeat what I said above: I simply do not understand how a wire service reporter who interviewed Oswald twice--on October 31, 1959 and then on November 14, 1959 (and who took his photograph on the first occasion)--could then go on to write a memoir (very likely written in 1961, since it was published in 1962), and not mention Lee Harvey Oswald.
I'd sure like to have someone explain that to me.
5/25/13; 2 PM PDT; edited, 9:15 PM PDT
Los Angeles, California
Edited by David Lifton, 26 May 2013 - 05:26 AM.