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Myra Bronstein

How did the capture of a live Lee Oswald change the plot?

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I really appreciate the quality and quantity of discussion on this.

The overarching question is whether or not an invasion of Cuba was part of the original plot. I don't even know enough to have an opinion yet. But I'm unconvinced that the capture of Oswald would make it necessary to cancel existing plans to invade Cuba.

Granted it was a big snafu, but they could have played the Ruby card with the narrative propaganda that this wholesome apple-pie eating flag-waving American Mr. Ruby was so outraged at the actions of the Castro-coddling commie scum Oswald that he snapped and took the law into his own hands bla bla bla. The plotters and their mockingbird allies could then fan the commie-hating flames and proceed to manipulate the public and congress into a justifiable righteous retaliatory invasion.

Again, I'm unconvinced that the capture of Oswald would make it necessary to cancel existing plans to invade Cuba. The plotters were determined, ruthless, and powerful. Why would they so quickly abandon one of two objectives?

Unless Johnson, when put in charge of the cover up, simply wouldn't play along with the invasion scenario now that he had what he wanted. But if that were the case I'd think they would have insured that LBJ lose the 1964 election. And clearly he was willing to give the military industrial complex their Vietnam war in return for the crown they handed him.

I just don't know...

Good reasoning, Myra. I don't think Oswald was an accident. They, the conspirators, deliberately made him the patsy. They even had Kennedy's limo drive by where Oswald worked. But I believe they threw his name around so much, making him a "commie," and setting him up for the blame -- the lone assassin.

I believe he was going to be killed right away, but it didn't happen due to bystanders. Had he died right away, he was still going to be the patsy. Belonging to the FPCC, the backyard photos, Mexico, people impersonating him, his time in Russia. I think the real objective was to have someone to blame for the Kennedy hit. I don't see an invasion plan: they were passing Oswald off as the only sniper. If a pro-Castro nut did it by himself, where is the invasion of Cuba? How can you blame a leader if someone all on his own kills his enemy? The main objective was to kill Kennedy and they succeeded, except for Oswald being captured alive. If Oswald was the lone assassin, wouldn't he enjoy the glory of it all? Instead he told the reporters just what he was -- a patsy. His "brother" Robert claims to this day that LHO did it for the fame or, rather, the infamy. No, not in my opinion.

The intention was to kill Kennedy. Who really did it? Agatha Christie wrote a mysery entitled Murder on the Orient Express. It was made into a movie. One person on a train is murdered and Hercule Poirot, a detective, must find the culprit. Not surprisingly, it turns out that everyone on the train had a motive and they all killed him: he was stabbed in the back a certain number of times, each time by a different person -- a real conspiracy. Whose knife wound killed the victim? No one knows. So it can't be said one person did it. They all did it:

Lyndon B. Johnson

CIA-trained Cuban exiles

Rogue elements of the CIA

J. Edgar Hoover

Richard Nixon

Congressman Al Thomas -- who winked and smiled at Johnson being sworn in on Air Force One, while Jackie was there covered in her husband's blood. (Best Evidence)

The Mafia -- Giancana, Trafficante, Marcello, Jimmy Hoffa, Roselli...

Mac Wallace

Lee Oswald

Military Intelligence and Industrial Complex

The Secret Service

The Oil Barons, starting with Clint Murchison and George H.W. Bush

They all killed President Kennedy. That's why we can't single out any particular faction as the Assassin. There was no invasion of Cuba in mind, much to the Cuban Exiles' torment.

Kathy

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I know I've broached this subject before, but here goes again. If the primary motive behind the JFK assassination was to invade Cuba, and those powerful forces who engineered it felt strongly enough about this issue to construct a coverup so enormous it is still in full force today, then why did Cuba as a political issue die with JFK in Dallas? Even accepting the premise that Oswald's capture changed everything (which I don't), why wouldn't these powerful conspirators have addressed this overriding concern of theirs (the invasion of Cuba, ouster of Castro) at some future point in time? LBJ, Hoover, Dulles, Helms, etc., all remained active for a number of years after the assassination. Certainly the CIA remained active in clandestine affairs. Why was nothing more done about this whole "Cuban" thing? Do you honestly believe that these men risked the assassination of a sitting U.S. president, and engaged in an all-emcompassing coverup that lasted decades, all for....nothing? If the motive was the overthrow of Castro, they achieved nothing by killing JFK.

I'll say it again- I think the whole "Cuban" connection to the assassination is a red herring (much like the "Mafia-did-it" theories). The people who had JFK killed did so for far more important reasons than ousting a tinpot dictator in another country. If you want to see what changes were brought about by JFK's assassination, you don't have look very far. If you look at Vietnam as a primary motive behind the assassination of JFK, it's a matter of record that his death dramatically altered what JFK had planned (the gradual withdrawal of all troops by 1965). But then again, all I can do is speculate, like everyone else. Imho, we ought to be looking at the individuals whose actions that day reveal a strong probability that they were culpable, to at least some degree, in the conspiracy to assassinate JFK. I'm thinking of Secret Service agents Emory Roberts, Roy Kellerman and Bill Greer (at least) and National Security advisor McGeorge Bundy. That's my two cents.

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I know I've broached this subject before, but here goes again. If the primary motive behind the JFK assassination was to invade Cuba, and those powerful forces who engineered it felt strongly enough about this issue to construct a coverup so enormous it is still in full force today, then why did Cuba as a political issue die with JFK in Dallas?

Upon what pre-text would an invasion of Cuba been predicated, post-Kennedy?

Aren't you assuming that the plotters of the murder were also the architects of

the "Lone Nut" cover-up?

And, to the best of my understanding, Cuba never stopped being a political issue.

Even accepting the premise that Oswald's capture changed everything (which I don't), why wouldn't these powerful conspirators have addressed this overriding concern of theirs (the invasion of Cuba, ouster of Castro) at some future point in time?

Again, under what pre-text?

LBJ, Hoover, Dulles, Helms, etc., all remained active for a number of years after the assassination. Certainly the CIA remained active in clandestine affairs. Why was nothing more done about this whole "Cuban" thing? Do you honestly believe that these men risked the assassination of a sitting U.S. president, and engaged in an all-emcompassing coverup that lasted decades, all for....nothing?

Again, you're assuming the same guys who plotted the murder engaged in

the "lone nut" cover-up.

The plot failed. Period. One of the key players, Harriman, was a big loser, imo.

If the motive was the overthrow of Castro, they achieved nothing by killing JFK.

They may have achieved everything if Oswald had been gunned down 11/22.

I'll say it again- I think the whole "Cuban" connection to the assassination is a red herring (much like the "Mafia-did-it" theories). The people who had JFK killed did so for far more important reasons than ousting a tinpot dictator in another country.

Of course they did. They wanted their Havana-to-Florida smuggling funnel back.

Having the international capital of smack 90 miles off-shore was a major reason

for the heroin scourge of the 50's.

We all know about "The French Connection" and the US Mob. The Corsican Mafia

produced the heroin and the Sicilian-American Outfit distributed it Stateside.

But these organized crime families didn't own the ships that brought the heroin in

from Europe and SE Asia. I'd speculate that it was transportation tycoons like

the Harrimans and Murchisons and Ari Onassis who played key roles in the

international distribution of narcotics.

The importance of Cuba to these people should not be under-estimated.

Follow the money. Especially black market money.

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Ok so it's widely believed that Oswald was not supposed to be captured alive.

Obviously this was remedied by sending Ruby to kill Oswald.

Aside from having to arrange Oswald's murder, what difference did Oswald's capture make in the way the plot unfolded?

I am among those who contend Oswald was not supposed to be captured alive, but am not among those who suspect he was to be killed "while resisting arrest," or anywhere near the crime scene.

If we comb through the fragments on display in the official documentary record, we find residual traces of what I contend was the intended plot, which was in some ways markedly different from events that actually transpired.

Oswald's dalliance with the FPCC culminated in precisely the result that was intended. He was identified in the media at the time as a pro-Castro firebrand, trying to do the unthinkable by recruiting FPCC supporters in New Orleans. Had it been a genuine effort on his part to actually recruit members, he presumably wouldn't have listed incorrect addresses on the recruiting leaflets. On the occasion he distributed those leaflets without being arrested, he did so only for about 15 minutes, just long enough to be photographed and noticed. On the occasion he distributed those leaflets and was arrested for clashing with Bringuier and his cohorts, even the arresting officer opined that the fracas had been staged. Rather than represent the FPCC, Oswald disobeyed every legitimate direction received by him from the NYC FPCC HQ. Instead of building a local chapter, his only achievement was registering on the local media radar, including filmed TV footage and a radio debate.

Leaving aside questions of impersonation for a moment, Oswald's approaches to the Cuban and Soviet embassies in Mexico City were equally fraudulent and self-defeating. According to the testimony taken from staff at each, Oswald seemed wholly ignorant of travel restrictions imposed on US citizens traveling to either country. Yet the real Oswald was well aware of all the bureaucratic red tape that this entailed, for he had already experienced same in his travels to the USSR, and in his repatriation. To bolster his eligibility for a travel visa, the Mexico City Oswald purportedly presented a brand new CPUSA membership card [LHO was not a member], which embassy staff found odd, since special allowances were made for CPUSA members, none of whom had ever needed to brandish a card to receive that special consideration. Oswald also allegedly presented a New Orleans newspaper article with a photograph of him being arrested. No such genuine newspaper article was ever published, according to the extant record. Again, this was not a genuine attempt to receive a travel visa; it was merely an opportunity to register him as a visitor to enemy embassies, and during once such visit to meet with a Soviet named Kostikov who would only later be "unmasked" as an expert in assassination and murder.

The incidents at Redbird airport in Dallas were staged for a purpose. An "Oswald" was sighted there prior to the assassination, as part of a group seeking to charter an airplane for 11/22/63. A plane sat idling for an hour or more on the Redbird tarmac in the early afternoon of 11/22/63, then eventually left. Subsequently, special attention was paid to an incoming small aircraft in Mexico City, and the alleged transfer of a single passenger to a Cubana Airlines flight that had been delayed there, as though waiting only for that passenger. According to an obscure little footnote in Dick Russell's "The Man Who Knew Too Much," after the assassination CIA had discovered luggage at the Mexico City airport for one Lee Oswald.

When Oswald was arrested, I suggest that there was no ID in his wallet containing the name "Hidell." Had there been, one might have expected any of the arresting officers - several of whom were contemporaneously interviewed by the media - or any of the DPD hierarchy to have mentioned that fact. Upstanding citizens don't use an alias, and those who carry false ID are immediately suspect for that fact alone. Despite the received history on this aspect of the case, it wouldn't be for a full 24 hours that the name "Hidell" was first uttered by those who arrested Oswald and purportedly found "Hidell" ID on his person a the time.

In fact, I suggest that all the so-called "Hidell" ID was actually discovered in the wallet located at the Tippit crime scene. This is why the name "Hidell" entered the nomenclature of the crime only after the rifle had been traced back to a mail-order buyer using that name, via Oswald's PO box. It was only when Captain Fritz was confronted by two wallets, both ostensibly belonging to the same suspect, that this became problematic, as we'll soon see.

Taking the foregoing into account, let us assume that shortly after the assassination, the man known as Lee Harvey Oswald simply vanished. What would have been left behind, and what inferences would have been drawn from that residue?

The wallet at the Tippit crime scene would have disclosed that a man named Lee Harvey Oswald, who also used the alias "Hidell," had killed a policeman. In tracking down this man's whereabouts, DPD would have discovered - as they did - incriminating photographs of Oswald posing with weapons. After the rifle had been found in the TSBD, it would have been traced back to Klein's in Chicago, and from there to a buyer named "Hidell" at Oswald's PO box. In short order, Oswald's masquerade as a FPCC radical would have surfaced, along with his criminal arrest in New Orleans, and the subsequent TV and radio appearances in which he advocated strongly on behalf of Castro.

Soon thereafter, sources within the US government would have disclosed that Oswald had made approaches to two enemy embassies in Mexico City, and CIA would have revealed - as it did - that one person Oswald met there was in charge of Soviet assassination plotting in the western hemisphere.

At which point, it would have come to the public's attention that a light plane had left Redbird airport shortly after the assassination, that a plane of similar description had landed in Mexico City, and that a single passenger had deplaned and entered a waiting Cubana Airlines flight bound for Havana. Conveniently, that passenger would have been identified as Lee Oswald, based on luggage that had mistakenly been left behind there. [so central to the plot was this airplane story that even after Oswald's capture, the tale was subsequently retro-fitted so that the mystery passenger morphed into several other Cuban actors with purportedly strong Castro allegiances.]

Had Oswald simply disappeared and left behind this breadcrumb trail of evidence, what inescapable conclusions would have been drawn, and what would have been the official US response?

The assassination didn't transpire precisely as had been planned. Yes, it succeeded in killing the President. It failed, however, to deliver the ancillary benefits of placing direct blame upon the Havana despot, as had been hoped.

The single most critical failure in achieving that end was Oswald being arrested with his own wallet in his own pocket.

It has long been my contention that if Oswald was framed, as the majority here seem to argue, then it is by locating and examining the elements of that frameup, pre- and post-assassination, that we can identify both the methods employed and those responsible for executing it.

When I had a chance to discuss this in person with Peter Dale Scott, whose own hypothesis is slightly different, he asked me "If the purpose was to incite a military response against Cuba, why didn't it happen?" I replied that Oswald's arrest had derailed the most critical aspects of the plan, for the same reasons outlined above. Exemplifying intellectual impartiality, he agreed it was worthy of further consideration.

As we lack the evidence to say exactly what was going on it is important to look at the possible psychology of the conspirators.

I would argue that three major events triggered off the assassination: (1) The Bay of Pigs; (2) The Cuban Missile Crisis; (3) The secret negotiations that took place between representatives of JFK and Castro in 1963.

These three events made it clear that JFK was not going to order the overthrow of Castro. This was especially upsetting for people like William Pawley who had both economic and political reasons for wanting to see the removal of Castro and the imposition of a puppet ruler.

The ideal solution to this problem was the assassination of JFK and the new president ordering the invasion of Cuba. Of course, if you could arrange for pro-Castro figures linked to the Cuban government to be blamed for the assassination, you would have a very good reason to invade Cuba.

As Robert Charles Dunne has so logically explained, Lee Harvey Oswald was clearly set-up to play this role. However, he would not have been the only one. Clearly the assassination was carried out by more than one man. Oswald would not have been the only “patsy”. These men would also have had links to pro-Castro Cubans.

The best understanding of what the FBI and CIA was up to in the days following the assassination of JFK comes from the LBJ telephone tapes. Remember, LBJ had left orders for these tapes and transcripts to be destroyed on his death. This did not happen and instead they were sealed an labelled as not to be opened and placed in the LBJ Library. As a result of the JFK Act these tapes were eventually released after being studied by the intelligence services. An estimated 7% of these tapes were not made public because of “national security” reasons. I suspect that several conversations that took place following the assassination have been held back as they clearly show that LBJ was aware that JFK had been killed as a result of a political conspiracy. Even so, the released tapes tell us a great deal about the cover-up.

I suspect the original plan was to kill Oswald soon after the assassination while allowing the other two patsy gunman to get back to Cuba. They were probably two of Castro’s agents that were in Dallas that day. Evidence would have been provided showing the route of these two men. Along with the evidence of Oswald’s behaviour in New Orleans there would have been significant reasons for LBJ to order an invasion of Cuba.

The plan came unstuck when Oswald was captured alive. The telephone call that Hoover made to LBJ on (10.01 am, 23rd November, 1963) reveals that the FBI had already established links between Oswald and Castro’s Cuba. However, Hoover has to admit that there are problems with this evidence:

Lyndon B. Johnson: Have you established any more about the visit to the Soviet embassy in Mexico in September?

J. Edgar Hoover: No, that's one angle that's very confusing, for this reason - we have up here the tape and the photograph of the man who was at the Soviet embassy, using Oswald's name. That picture and the tape do not correspond to this man's voice, nor to his appearance. In other words, it appears that there is a second person who was at the Soviet embassy down there. We do have a copy of a letter which was written by Oswald to the Soviet embassy here in Washington, inquiring as well as complaining about the harassment of his wife and the questioning of his wife by the FBI. Now, of course, that letter information - we process all mail that goes to the Soviet embassy. It's a very secret operation. No mail is delivered to the embassy without being examined and opened by us, so that we know what they receive... The case, as it stands now, isn't strong enough to be able to get a conviction.

It is clear to both Hoover and LBJ that if Oswald was involved in the assassination of JFK, there were fellow conspirators. What is more, the evidence suggests that Oswald was being set-up and as Hoover points out: “The case, as it stands now, isn't strong enough to be able to get a conviction.”

LBJ phones Hoover again at 10.30 am, 25th November, 1963.

Lyndon B. Johnson: Apparently some lawyer in Justice is lobbying with the (Washington) Post because that's where the suggestion came from for this presidential commission, which we think would be very bad and put it right in the White House. We can't be checking up on every shooting scrape in the country, but they've gone to the Post now to get 'em an editorial, and the Post is calling up and saying they're going to run an editorial if we don't do things. Now we're going to do two things and I wanted you to know about it. One - we believe that the way to handle this, as we said yesterday - your suggestion - that you put every facility at your command, making a full report to the Attorney General and then they make it available to the country in whatever form may seem desirable. Second - it's a state matter, too, and the state Attorney General is young and able and prudent and very cooperative with you. He's going to run a Court of Inquiry, which is provided for by state law, and he's going to have associated with him the most outstanding jurists in the country. But he's a good conservative fella and we don't start invading local jurisdictions that way and he understands what you're doing and he's for it... Now if you get too many cooks messing with the broth, it'll mess it up. ... These two are trained organizations and the Attorney General of the state holds Courts of Inquiry every time a law is violated, and the FBI makes these investigations... You ought to tell your press men that that's what's happening and they can expect Waggoner Carr, the Attorney General of Texas, to make an announcement this morning, to have a state inquiry and that you can offer them your full cooperation and vice versa. . . .

J. Edgar Hoover: We'll both work together on it.

Lyndon B. Johnson: And any influence you got with the Post... point out to them that... just picking out a Tom Dewey lawyer from New York and sending him down on new facts - this commission thing - Mr. Herbert Hoover tried that and some- times a commission that's not trained hurts more than it helps.

J. Edgar Hoover: It's a regular circus then.

Lyndon B. Johnson: That's right.

J. Edgar Hoover: Because it'll be covered by TV and everything like that.

Lyndon B. Johnson: Just like an investigating committee.

J. Edgar Hoover: Exactly. I don't have much influence with the Post because I frankly don't read it. I view it like the Daily Worker.

Lyndon B. Johnson: (laughs) You told me that once before. I just want your people to know the facts, and your people can say that. And that kind of negates it, you see?

At 1.40 pm, on 29th November, 1963, LBJ is once again on the phone to Hoover. The news about Oswald’s links to Castro’s Cuba is still giving LBJ concern. Hoover tells him: “This angle in Mexico is giving us a great deal of trouble because the story there is of this man Oswald getting $6,500 from the Cuban embassy and then coming back to this country with it. We're not able to prove that fact, but the information was that he was there on the 18th of September in Mexico City and we are able to prove conclusively he was in New Orleans that day. Now then they've changed the dates. The story came in changing the dates to the 28th of September and he was in Mexico City on the 28th. Now the Mexican police have again arrested this woman Duran, who is a member of the Cuban embassy.”

LBJ realizes that there is not enough evidence to indicate that Castro definitely ordered the assassination of JFK. He knows that any attempt to overthrow Castro on this evidence could backfire like the Bay of Pigs invasion. LBJ would come under considerable international pressure to carry out a full and open investigation of the JFK assassination. He would be particularly concerned about this investigation as it could lead back to him (I suspect he had already been told about the Mac Wallace print being found in the Texas School Book Depository).

It now becomes vitally important to LBJ that Oswald is seen as a lone-gunman. During the same 29th November, 1963, telephone conversation, LBJ begins to work with Hoover on the idea of setting up a commission to convince the world that Oswald acted alone.

Lyndon B. Johnson: Are you familiar with this proposed group that they're trying to put together on this study of your report and other things - two from the House, two from the Senate, somebody from the Court, a couple of outsiders?

J. Edgar Hoover: No, I haven't heard of that. ... I think it would be very, very bad to have a rash of investigations on this thing.

Lyndon B. Johnson: Well, the only way we can stop them is probably to appoint a high-level one to evaluate your report and put somebody that's pretty good on it that I can select... and tell the House and the Senate not to go ahead... because they'll get a lot of television going and I thought it would be bad.

J. Edgar Hoover: It would be a three-ring circus.

Lyndon B. Johnson: What do you think about Alien Dulles?

J. Edgar Hoover: I think he would be a good man.

Lyndon B. Johnson: What do you think about John McCloy?

J. Edgar Hoover: I'm not as enthusiastic about McCloy... I'm not so certain as to the matter of the publicity that he might seek on it.

Lyndon B. Johnson: What about General Norstad?

J. Edgar Hoover: Good man.

Lyndon B. Johnson: I thought maybe I might try to get Boggs and Jerry Ford in the House, maybe try to get Dick Russell and maybe Cooper in the Senate.

J. Edgar Hoover: Yes, I think so.

Lyndon B. Johnson: Me and you are just going to talk like brothers. ... I thought Russell could kind of look after the general situation, see that the states and their relations.

J. Edgar Hoover: Russell would be an excellent man.

Lyndon B. Johnson: And I thought Cooper might look after the liberal group.... He's a pretty judicious fellow but he's a pretty liberal fellow. I wouldn't want Javits or some of those on it.

J. Edgar Hoover: No, no, no. Javits plays the front page a lot.

Lyndon B. Johnson: Cooper is kind of border state. It's not the South and it's not the North.

J. Edgar Hoover: That's right.

Lyndon B. Johnson: Do you know Ford from Michigan?

J. Edgar Hoover: I know of him, but I don't know him. I saw him on TV the other night for the first time and he handled himself well on that.

Lyndon B. Johnson: You know Boggs?

J. Edgar Hoover: Oh, yes, I know Boggs.

Lyndon B. Johnson: He's kind of the author of the resolution. That's why. Now Walter tells me - Walter Jenkins - that you've designated Deke (Cartha DeLoach) to work with us, like you did on the Hill, and I tell you I sure appreciate that. I didn't ask for it 'cause ... I know you know how to run your business better than anybody else... We consider him as high-class as you do. And it is a mighty gracious thing to do. And we'll be mighty happy we salute you for knowing how to pick good men.

This tape shows that Hoover is already lying. At this point Ford is already under the control of Hoover and is the man selected to leak information and to spread disinformation on the Warren Commission.

LBJ still has the problem of dealing with the links between Oswald and Castro (I suspect that the unreleased tapes also go into this area in great detail). LBJ is clearly coming under pressure from those involved in the conspiracy to order an invasion of Cuba. LBJ first explains his position in a phone call to Charles Halleck, House Minority Leader at 6.30 pm on 29th November, 1963.

Lyndon B. Johnson: Charlie, I hate to bother you but. . . I've got to appoint a commission and issue an executive order tonight on investigation of the assassination of the President because this thing is getting pretty serious and our folks are worried about it. It's got some foreign complications - CIA and other things - and I'm going to try to get the Chief Justice to go on it. He declined earlier in the day, but I think I'm going to try to get him to head it....

Charles Halleck: Chief Justice Warren?

Lyndon B. Johnson: Yes.

Charles Halleck: I think that's a mistake....

Lyndon B. Johnson: I'd be glad to hear you, but I want to talk to you about - he thought it was a mistake till I told him everything we knew and we just can't have House and Senate and FBI and other people going around testifying that Khrushchev killed Kennedy or Castro killed him. We've got to have the facts, and you don't have a President assassinated once every fifty years. And this thing is so touchy from an international standpoint that every man we've got over there is concerned about it....

Charles Halleck: I'll cooperate, my friend. I'll tell you one thing, Lyndon - Mr. President - I think that to call on Supreme Court guys to do jobs is kind of a mistake.

Lyndon B. Johnson: It is on all these other things I agree with you on Pearl Harbor and I agree with you on the railroad strike. But this is a question that could involve our losing thirty-nine million people. This is a judicial question.

Charles Halleck: I, of course, don't want that to happen. Of course, I was a little disappointed in the speech the Chief Justice made. I'll talk to you real plainly. He's jumped at the gun and, of course, I don't know whether the right wing was in this or not. You've been very discreet. You have mentioned the left and the right and I am for that.

LBJ makes the point: “we just can't have House and Senate and FBI and other people going around testifying that Khrushchev killed Kennedy or Castro killed him.” If this story gets out he will have to invade Cuba and that is likely to result in “our losing thirty-nine million people”.

LBJ makes similar phone-calls to several people over the next few days. This is what he says to Richard B. Russell at 8.55 p.m on 29th November.

Richard Russell: I know I don't have to tell you of my devotion to you but I just can't serve on that Commission. I'm highly honoured you'd think about me in connection with it but I couldn't serve on it with Chief Justice Warren. I don't like that man. I don't have any confidence in him at all.

Lyndon B. Johnson: It has already been announced and you can serve with anybody for the good of America and this is a question that has a good many more ramifications than on the surface and we've got to take this out of the arena where they're testifying that Khrushchev and Castro did this and did that and chuck us into a war that can kill 40 million Americans in an hour....

Richard Russell: I still feel it sort of getting wrapped up...

Lyndon B. Johnson: Dick... do you remember when you met me at the Carlton Hotel in 1952? When we had breakfast there one morning.

Richard Russell: Yes I think so.

Lyndon B. Johnson: All right. Do you think I'm kidding you?

Richard Russell: No... I don't think your kidding me, but I think... well, I'm not going to say anymore, Mr. President... I'm at your command... and I'll do anything you want me to do....

Lyndon B. Johnson: Warren told me he wouldn't do it under any circumstances... I called him and ordered him down here and told me no twice and I just pulled out what Hoover told me about a little incident in Mexico City and I say now, I don't want Mr. Khrushchev to be told tomorrow (censored) and be testifying before a camera that he killed this fellow and that Castro killed him... And he started crying and said, well I won't turn you down... I'll do whatever you say.

This is LBJ's cover story. Although the evidence suggests a Castro/KGB plot, he cannot acknowledge the fact because it might result in a nuclear war. Of course, there was no chance that the Soviet Union would have launched a nuclear strike if the US had invaded Cuba. However, it was the only motive for his actions that LBJ could come up with.

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John wrote:

"Of course, there was no chance that the Soviet Union would have launched a nuclear strike if the US had invaded Cuba. "

You may or may not be right, John, but that was NOT the thinking in 1962-1964.

Ever read about the Cuban Missile Crisis and the Kennedy Administration officials who went to bed at night not sure if they would wake up in the morning?

If LBJ was innocent, he faced quite a dilemma. If he allowed a full-fledged investigation and it showed foreign involvement, that could very well have led to a war. Perhaps there was no foreign involvement and it was only the Mafia (or the CIA, I know you like that choice better) but LBJ could not know that at the outset. It was like the proverbial Pandora's box.

Under those circumstances, I think most would agree that the choice he made was wise.

I mean let us assume for even a fleeting moment that records are now released proving Soviet involvement. At this time, we are obviously not going to go to war with Russia to avenge JFK. But circumstances would have been different if Soviet involvement had been demonstrated in 1964.

It is my contention that if there was NOT foreign involvement, then the conspirators had planted evidence suggesting such involvement not to spark an invasion of Cuba but to guarantee a cover-up.

Your point is wrong that the Russians would not have launched a nuclear strike had we invaded Cuba. What the Russians would have done is NOT the question. The question is what was in the mind of American officials in 1963 and one need only look at the Cuban Missile Crisis to see how afraid we were at that time of WW III starting over Cuba.

Edited by Tim Gratz

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Peter wrote:

"I hate to even contemplate LBJ having ever done something 'right'...for whatever reason."

Peter, LBJ was indeed BAD. And he was coarse and vulgar. And probably only a few people in the US wanted him defeated more than I did.

BUT he did a lot of great things that helped this country and we ought not forget that. When he pushed through the civil rights legislation, he helped not only the black citizens of this country but he helped all of us of all races. He deserves credit for that.

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Cliff,

We arrive at the core of our disagreement.

You write, "Again, you're assuming the same guys who plotted the murder engaged in the 'lone nut' cover-up.

"The plot failed. Period. One of the key players, Harriman, was a big loser, imo."

_________________________________________________________________

The plot succeeded beyond all expectations. The plotters had one -- and only one -- goal: the elimination of JFK in the form of a lesson for all who would follow.

The LN cover-up was part of the plot from its nascent stages.

There were three tiers of conspirators, each to varying degrees hierarchical in nature: sponsors, facilitators, and mechanics. Suspects for involvement at the mid-level include the likes of Phillips, Lansdale, Fursetseva, Andropov, Conein, King, Harvey, Morales, Simpson, Rosselli, and/or others. The organizations and interests with which they remain identified may be labeled "false sponsors." In terms of making the cover-up work: the more the merrier.

George Michael Evica describes a large segment of them succinctly and powerfully: "a treasonous cabal of hard-line American and Soviet intelligence agents whose masters were above Cold War differences." (emphasis added)

At the lowest level are the hunters and their wingmen/women.

At the highest level? The aforementioned masters, for whom perpetuation of the Cold War was the ultimate goal.

To the degree that JFK personified the threat of peace, and Castro stood then as now as a critically important component in the overall plan to preserve manageable East-West hostilities in order to perpetuate and maximize profit and power for the masters, the former had to go, and the latter had to stay.

Khrushchev was soon to follow JFK as a victim of, in his case, a bloodless coup as ordered by the same masters, for the same reasons.

Now I'm not comfortable with the melodrama inherent in use of terms like "the masters." So let's be a tad more verbose and identify those at the sponsorship level of the assassination as the proprietors of -- with apologies to Frank Loesser -- the oldest established permanent floating crap game in the world.

And I mean crap.

Charles

Edited by Charles Drago

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Cliff,

We arrive at the core of our disagreement.

And a bracing disagreement it is, Charles! Most enjoyable...

Let me turn it over to one of my main guys, Larry Hancock, who puts it

better than I can. Someone Would Have Talked, pg 311-2:

(quote on)

Among the difficulties in understanding the Kennedy conspiracy, perhaps

the most challenging is reconciling the many elements that appear to be

contradictory. This has been made even more difficult for those who have

viewed the "cover-up" as an extension of the conspiracy. That difficulty

disappears if we first view the conspiracy to frame Oswald as a Castro (or

both Cuban and Soviet associated) conspirator, a plan that became totally

unraveled when Oswald was taken into custody. And second, we see that

the so-called "cover-up" was an independent, largely unplanned and highly

reactive effort to ensure that a Lee Harvey Oswald would [take] the fall all

by himself -- as a lone nut.

* The plot was to show the US President being killed by a Castro sponsored

conspiracy.

* The plotters were unable to execute their full plan due to Oswald's capture.

* Due to Oswald's role as an intelligence dangle and his contact with Kostikov,

the initial appearance was still that Oswald might have been acting as a

Communist dupe.

* Both the FBI and the CIA were aware of the Kostikov implications; when,

how, and if they shared this information with the new President is unclear.

* Lyndon Johnson personally led the official cover-up to eliminate any

public suggestion of conspiracy while leveraging confidential information

and the threat of war to make the cover-up work.

* The "lone nut" was a creation of the official cover-up, not of the Kennedy

plot.

* The plotters follow-on efforts to maintain conspiracy were overwhelmed

by Johnson.

(quote off)

You write, "Again, you're assuming the same guys who plotted the murder engaged in the 'lone nut' cover-up.

"The plot failed. Period. One of the key players, Harriman, was a big loser, imo."

The plot succeeded beyond all expectations. The plotters had one -- and only one -- goal: the elimination of JFK in the form of a lesson for all who would follow.

The LN cover-up was part of the plot from its nascent stages.

See above.

There were three tiers of conspirators, each to varying degrees hierarchical in nature: sponsors, facilitators, and mechanics. Suspects for involvement at the mid-level include the likes of Phillips, Lansdale, Fursetseva, Andropov, Conein, King, Harvey, Morales, Simpson, Rosselli, and/or others. The organizations and interests with which they remain identified may be labeled "false sponsors." In terms of making the cover-up work: the more the merrier.

George Michael Evica describes a large segment of them succinctly and powerfully: "a treasonous cabal of hard-line American and Soviet intelligence agents whose masters were above Cold War differences." (emphasis added)

At the lowest level are the hunters and their wingmen/women.

At the highest level? The aforementioned masters, for whom perpetuation of the Cold War was the ultimate goal.

To the degree that JFK personified the threat of peace, and Castro stood then as now as a critically important component in the overall plan to preserve manageable East-West hostilities in order to perpetuate and maximize profit and power for the masters, the former had to go, and the latter had to stay.

Khrushchev was soon to follow JFK as a victim of, in his case, a bloodless coup as ordered by the same masters, for the same reasons.

Now I'm not comfortable with the melodrama inherent in use of terms like "the masters." So let's be a tad more verbose and identify those at the sponsorship level of the assassination as the proprietors of -- with apologies to Frank Loesser -- the oldest established permanent floating crap game in the world.

And I mean crap.

Charles

Your analysis has a great deal to recommend it. But I still don't think it

hits the very core of the case.

For me, in my view/opinion, the key word here is "floating."

W. Averell Harriman, Clint Murchison, Jr., and Ari Onassis were in the business

of "floating" a lot more than the usual crap.

Havana was the world capital for heroin in the 50's and the "masters" wanted it back.

Chiba, y'all, was behind it all.

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Cliff,

We are destined to disagree. But this is fun, so:

You quote Larry Hancock thusly: "[We should] first view the conspiracy to frame Oswald as a Castro (or both Cuban and Soviet associated) conspirator, a plan that became totally unraveled when Oswald was taken into custody. And second, we see that the so-called 'cover-up' was an independent, largely unplanned and highly reactive effort to ensure that a Lee Harvey Oswald would [take] the fall all by himself -- as a lone nut."

I truly dig disagreeing with experts and other correspondents for whom I harbor the utmost respect; in the former category I place RCD and LH. And your expertise is also highly valued. That being said ... you're all so very wrong!

The conspiracy to frame Oswald as a Cuban and/or Soviet conspirator did not come close to unraveling -- although I'm willing to stipulate that the patsy's survival to 11/24 might have minimally frayed an edge of the plot's fabric.

My proof? In spite of (as you might put it) Oswald's survival, the legend of his commie sponsorship was strong enough to convince the likes of Earl Warren and others to shut up and support the LN lie.

Further, I've yet to read anyone's explantion of how a living LHO could have said or done anything to scuttle an invasion plan that in turn could not be tossed into the memory hole.

Get creative. Write the scene. What does Oswald have to say? To whom does he say it?

Soon enough he's dead, and the plan can move forward.

Except there was no real plan to invade Cuba.

The invasion of Cuba didn't happen because the sponsors of the assassination didn't want it to happen. Never did.

And yes, perhaps LHO's short-term, post-assassination survival did necessitate improvisations on the plot's basic theme. Merde happens. Any plotters worth the name understand this, and prepare to react if need be.

But wait, you say. The evidence against LHO as lone nut is so weak, today no one in his or her right mind could possibly accept it without challenge ...

Yeah, yeah, yeah. Has the parent state ever truly abandoned the LN lie (HSCA's conclusion notwithstanding -- anything)? Is not the parent state's imprimatur still the only endorsement that counts? That is powerful enough to deny justice?

WHAT IF LHO dies on 11/22/63? Nothing else changes. The faux commie connections still function to disarm honest investigators, the LN lie still is promoted.

WHAT IF the LN "evidence" is transparently bogus? Which it is. The parent state endorses it, so it is official, which means it is as real and as powerful and as persuasive as it has to be to protect the sponsors and their great game.

None of my previously referenced facilitators/false sponsors -- including LBJ and JEH and the JCS -- had the power to do anything about the Cuba disappointment.

Cuba was marginalized. Cuba was an asset.

All eyes turned far eastward.

Charles

Edited by Charles Drago

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To avoid confusion, my current comments are in this lovely colour. First a few thoughts on methodology that might help to dispel some confusion, or make my own points painstakingly clear, for I fear they have not been thus far.

It is important for us to distinguish between what the plotters of the assassination planned, and what actually transpired, to the extent that we can do so and to the extent that there is a difference between the two, but only based upon evidence.

It is even more important to distinguish between the plotters themselves, and all those who aided and abetted the coverup of the crime, for they are not synonymous. Quick hypothetical example: You are John McCone and you arrive at your office on the morning of 11/23/63. You are handed a report indicating a few of your lower level operatives may have played a part in the prior day's events. You have two stark choices: 1) you go public with what you know, which will not resurrect the dead President, but will surely lead to the evisceration of your own Agency, the last bulwark against Godless Communism, thereby leaving your country in ruins; or, 2) you keep your mouth shut, bury the report, contribute to the necessary ensuing obfuscation of the details and pray to your God for forgiveness.

The fact that you - McCone - have contributed to the coverup in no way implicates you as a plotter, nor in any way suggests you had any witting foreknowledge of the event. It means only that for the sake of your own institution's continued existence, which you deem of paramount importance, and for the sake of ensuring your country isn't castigated as some banana republic where democracy is merely a bad joke, you have committed the lesser of two evils.

It is a common failing to assume that all those who participated in the coverup must also, ergo, have been witting participants in the crime. It is a logical fallacy, and must be eschewed at all costs, for otherwise there will never be any truth disclosed.

For my own purposes, I try to avoid vague and amorphous terms such as "they" and "the powers that be," both because they are imprecise and open to misinterpretation, and because such terms serve no useful purpose to my own way of thinking. While I am happy to entertain any notional mental exercise that might identify all those who conspired to kill the President, I refrain from making assertions against any individual unless and until I think I've encountered sufficiently weighty evidence to make those allegations. Sweeping generalizations of who must have been involved don't do credit to any of us, unless we bolster those assertions with indisputable, legally compelling hard fact. To do otherwise is to become a "buff," which I am not and don't intend to become.

Any criminal investigator begins at the bottom of the crime's possible pyramid of characters and then works his way up the food chain, using the lower echelon players to implicate those higher up. Frustrating, slow and tedious as this methodology might be, it is used for a reason; it leads to unimpeachable evidence that reasonable people can agree carries legal weight. It is my goal to employ such tactics, because they yield the most fruit.

Consequently, without wishing to appear as though I'm trying to absolve LBJ, Harriman or anyone else in such high positions of power, I refrain from making such assertions because I've yet to see sufficient proof of their involvement; by which I mean evidence that carries legal weight, not just what might be inferred from suggestive facts. Unfortunately, in the absence of many such legally probative details, we are all reduced to a degree of speculation, which I don't seek to discourage, but must stress should be done without causing offense to either common sense or the facts on the ground, such as they are.

Cliff,

We are destined to disagree. But this is fun, so:

You quote Larry Hancock thusly: "[We should] first view the conspiracy to frame Oswald as a Castro (or both Cuban and Soviet associated) conspirator, a plan that became totally unraveled when Oswald was taken into custody. And second, we see that the so-called 'cover-up' was an independent, largely unplanned and highly reactive effort to ensure that a Lee Harvey Oswald would [take] the fall all by himself -- as a lone nut."

I truly dig disagreeing with experts and other correspondents for whom I harbor the utmost respect; in the former category I place RCD and LH. And your expertise is also highly valued. That being said ... you're all so very wrong!

The conspiracy to frame Oswald as a Cuban and/or Soviet conspirator did not come close to unraveling -- although I'm willing to stipulate that the patsy's survival to 11/24 might have minimally frayed an edge of the plot's fabric.

My proof? In spite of (as you might put it) Oswald's survival, the legend of his commie sponsorship was strong enough to convince the likes of Earl Warren and others to shut up and support the LN lie.

Which does not mean this was the plotters' intent, only that it is how things played out. If you have some probative proof that this was the plotters' intent, then you can make a case for your claim. What we have from you at present is vehemently stated opinion, which is no substitute for reasons to believe that opinion.

Further, I've yet to read anyone's explantion of how a living LHO could have said or done anything to scuttle an invasion plan that in turn could not be tossed into the memory hole.

Get creative. Write the scene. What does Oswald have to say? To whom does he say it?

Nothing. To nobody. He evaporates.

Soon enough he's dead, and the plan can move forward.

No, the plan moves forward when Oswald disappears, and then the breadcrumb trail of evidence implicating him leads all the way to Havana. At this point, the US hand is forced, because the international outcry over this is irresistable. Case in point: after Nine-One-One, Bush needed only to identify the perpetrators - not prove that they did it - in order for swift US military reaction. That's my precendent offered to illustrate the kind of cause and effect I mean; what's your precedent for explaining inaction?

Except there was no real plan to invade Cuba.

Again, this confuses the plotters' intent with what eventually transpired. As you have yourself admitted, there is always a gaming scenario for the invasion or defense of just about every nation of earth, and there has always been and will always be one regularly bruited for Cuba, unless and until Castro is dead and/or the unfriendly government there is overthrown. But, as I've pointed out before, this presupposes that the plotters and those in charge of the government were synonymous. In that case, it is non-sensical that, having the evidence of Cuban complicity at hand, they failed to pursue their ancillary goal. But this is not what I have argued, merely what you have presented.

We know from Northwoods that the Pentagon and some adminstration hardliners were so keen to overthrow Castro that they conceived pretexts to achieve same, including, if necessary, the deaths of US citizens in a false flag operation for which Cuba could be blamed. Yet you insist that there was never any real desire to effect regime change in Havana, based solely upon the fact that it didn't happen. If US interests had no desire for such regime change in Havana, how does one explain away the little trifle known as the Bay of Pigs? [And by the way, I'm older than most members here and cannot remember a time in my life when the Pentagon and Oval Office didn't desire the regime change of some state, somewhere, for some reason. To aver otherwise is to insist that Guatemala, Iran, Hungary, the Dominican Republic, Viet Nam, Panama, Grenada, Iraq, et al, were all some kind of accidents that happened despite US wishes to the contrary. You say that Cuba was different, without disclosing why there was such a disconnect between what Pentagon hardliners said and did, or how you have divined this, in the absence of any proof for your assertion.]

I say again the following, as clearly as I can and hopefully for the final time as this is getting truly tedious. The plotters desired two things: the removal of a President who had been obstinately refusing the rebuffing their plans on a number of fronts [not merely Cuba, so don't misread what I haven't written] and foresaw the additional benefit of regime change in Cuba. An at least superficially Cuban-sponsored assassin was their means to achieve this. Irrespective of whether there was a fully formed plan by the US military to invade Cuba extant minutes before the assassination, there most assuredly would have been one within minutes after the assassination, had the plotters' aim succeeded in doing more than merely murdering the President [which, by the way, could have been achieved at any time, just about anywhere, without involving anything more than a lone psycho.] Those who insist I'm claiming this was "all about Cuba" are purposefully missing the point. No it wasn't all about Cuba; they wanted the President dead. Period. Full stop. But, if a bit of clever planning on their part also yielded the return of Cuba as a US vassal state, so much the better. Two birds; one stone.

You have asked for a scenario that illustrates this point, and I've already provided one, but perhaps I was insufficiently clear, or it has been glossed over. So, as if for the first time, clear your mind of all prior facts, thoughts, biases and conclusions. Then consider the chronology of events below:

*The President is murdered. A rifle is found in a building adjacent to the crime scene.

*A policeman is murdered. A wallet containing ID in the names of both Lee Harvey Oswald and Alec Hidell is located nearby. Conveniently, the ID makes clear that Oswald, soon identified to be a real person, has been using the name Hidell as an alias.

*The assassination rifle is soon traced to its source, where it is learned that the weapon was shipped to someone name "Hidell" at Oswald's PO box.

*New Orleans Police records disclose that Lee Oswald had been arrested only months before, while demonstrating there on Castro's behalf; the same reports disclose the proximity of someone named "Hidell."

*TV footage and radio tapes surface of Oswald advocating strongly on behalf of Castro.

*Unnamed sources reveal that Oswald had appeared at Cuban and Soviet embassies in Mexico City seeking a travel visa to each, only six weeks prior to the assassination.

*Unnamed sources disclose that one of the Soviet consular staff Oswald dealt with in Mexico City is the KGB man in charge of sabotage and assassination in the Western Hemisphere.

*Unnamed sources disclose that a light plane left Redbird airfield soon after the assassination.

*Unnamed sources disclose that not long thereafter a light plane landed at Mexico City airport, and that a sole passenger disembarked, only to walk across the tarmac and board a Havana-bound Cubana airlines flight that seems to have been awaiting only that single passenger.

*Unnamed sources disclose the discovery of luggage in the name of Lee Oswald at Mexico City airport.

In Oswald's absence [not his murder, his death while resisting arrest and certainly not his capture by police], the clear and unmistakable inferences are obvious. With the disclosure of such details, would the nation's populace have really been content with anything less than an all-out invasion of Cuba? As would be the case with Bush and Nine-One-One nearly forty years later, the demand for a US military response would have been instantaneous, even if the administration couldn't prove that Castro was responsible.

Having gone to all the trouble to lay on this patina of superficially compelling evidence of Cuban complicity, why wouldn't there have been an invasion? It's a gimme; two for the price of one.

And yet you maintain, without providing the slightest evidence for the assertion, that all of the above details were purely intended for a private audience, to frighten them into compliance with the coverup, and would never have found a broader audience.

I ask plainly: what coverup? What coverup would have been required in such a circumstance? The evidence, while completely false, would have been overwhelmingly persuasive to the average citizen, and its falsity only discovered well after the fact, if ever.

And yet you maintain, without providing the slightest evidence for the assertion, that because there was no active plan for an invasion [citation please], there couldn't have been a post-assassination invasion [citation please], solely because it did not happen. This circular reasoning seems based upon evidence which you've yet to present.

The invasion of Cuba didn't happen because the sponsors of the assassination didn't want it to happen. Never did.

You can state this, as though it were fact, based upon what, other than supposition?

And yes, perhaps LHO's short-term, post-assassination survival did necessitate improvisations on the plot's basic theme. Merde happens. Any plotters worth the name understand this, and prepare to react if need be.

But wait, you say. The evidence against LHO as lone nut is so weak, today no one in his or her right mind could possibly accept it without challenge ...

Yeah, yeah, yeah. Has the parent state ever truly abandoned the LN lie (HSCA's conclusion notwithstanding -- anything)? Is not the parent state's imprimatur still the only endorsement that counts? That is powerful enough to deny justice?

WHAT IF LHO dies on 11/22/63? Nothing else changes. The faux commie connections still function to disarm honest investigators, the LN lie still is promoted.

And yet I have never suggested that Oswald was to die, at least not in any public fashion. Somebody, irrespective of whom, had to walk across that tarmac in Mexico City to flee to Havana, or at least be reported to have done so. "Oswald" couldn't have done that if he were either publicly known to be dead or in police custody, which is the rub.

WHAT IF the LN "evidence" is transparently bogus? Which it is. The parent state endorses it, so it is official, which means it is as real and as powerful and as persuasive as it has to be to protect the sponsors and their great game.

None of my previously referenced facilitators/false sponsors -- including LBJ and JEH and the JCS -- had the power to do anything about the Cuba disappointment.

Feel free to reference whatever facilitators/false sponsors you like - but in light of the scenario I've described above, none of those you've named would have had the power to withstand the desire of the populace to exact revenge upon Castro.

Cuba was marginalized. Cuba was an asset.

Again, presenting evidence for this contention, rather than just the contention, would be most helpful, not least to your own case. I realize there are those who think the US has been entirely sanguine about Castro remaining in power since 1959, and that the threat he hypothetically poses only bolsters Pentagon demands for more funds, etc. However, this misses a few points. Surely the Pentagon hasn't been so bereft of other similarly threatening states that the overthrow of Castro would have put the Pentagon out of business. There were other threats to justify keeping the Pentagon around, were there not? Moreover, how does one justify presenting the Pentagon with ever greater budgetary appropriations if they never actually do anything with the money?

All eyes turned far eastward.

Only because “The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men / Gang aft a-gley.” Had Oswald been presumed to reside in Havana after the assassination, all eyes would have turned southward, in a heartbeat. Followed by boots on the ground and death from above.

Your serve.

Charles

Edited by Robert Charles-Dunne

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Cliff,

We are destined to disagree. But this is fun, so:

You quote Larry Hancock thusly: "[We should] first view the conspiracy to frame Oswald as a Castro (or both Cuban and Soviet associated) conspirator, a plan that became totally unraveled when Oswald was taken into custody. And second, we see that the so-called 'cover-up' was an independent, largely unplanned and highly reactive effort to ensure that a Lee Harvey Oswald would [take] the fall all by himself -- as a lone nut."

I truly dig disagreeing with experts and other correspondents for whom I harbor the utmost respect; in the former category I place RCD and LH. And your expertise is also highly valued. That being said ... you're all so very wrong!

The conspiracy to frame Oswald as a Cuban and/or Soviet conspirator did not come close to unraveling -- although I'm willing to stipulate that the patsy's survival to 11/24 might have minimally frayed an edge of the plot's fabric.

My proof? In spite of (as you might put it) Oswald's survival, the legend of his commie sponsorship was strong enough to convince the likes of Earl Warren and others to shut up and support the LN lie.

Further, I've yet to read anyone's explantion of how a living LHO could have said or done anything to scuttle an invasion plan that in turn could not be tossed into the memory hole.

Get creative. Write the scene. What does Oswald have to say? To whom does he say it?

Soon enough he's dead, and the plan can move forward.

Except there was no real plan to invade Cuba.

The invasion of Cuba didn't happen because the sponsors of the assassination didn't want it to happen. Never did.

And yes, perhaps LHO's short-term, post-assassination survival did necessitate improvisations on the plot's basic theme. Merde happens. Any plotters worth the name understand this, and prepare to react if need be.

But wait, you say. The evidence against LHO as lone nut is so weak, today no one in his or her right mind could possibly accept it without challenge ...

Yeah, yeah, yeah. Has the parent state ever truly abandoned the LN lie (HSCA's conclusion notwithstanding -- anything)? Is not the parent state's imprimatur still the only endorsement that counts? That is powerful enough to deny justice?

WHAT IF LHO dies on 11/22/63? Nothing else changes. The faux commie connections still function to disarm honest investigators, the LN lie still is promoted.

WHAT IF the LN "evidence" is transparently bogus? Which it is. The parent state endorses it, so it is official, which means it is as real and as powerful and as persuasive as it has to be to protect the sponsors and their great game.

None of my previously referenced facilitators/false sponsors -- including LBJ and JEH and the JCS -- had the power to do anything about the Cuba disappointment.

Cuba was marginalized. Cuba was an asset.

All eyes turned far eastward.

Charles

Charles, I hate to side against Robert and Larry (both of whom I admire greatly),

but I think your position on Cuba has the most to recommend it. It was/is advantageous

to maintain Cuba as a "neutralized threat" (as it has been for fifty years). The real

outlook was as LBJ allegedly told the military...OK, BOYS, NOW YOU CAN HAVE YOUR

WAR (Vietnam). That was the real objective.

Jack

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To avoid confusion, my current comments are in this lovely colour.

Make mine burgundy.

First a few thoughts on methodology that might help to dispel some confusion, or make my own points painstakingly clear, for I fear they have not been thus far.

It is important for us to distinguish between what the plotters of the assassination planned, and what actually transpired, to the extent that we can do so and to the extent that there is a difference between the two, but only based upon evidence.

It is even more important to distinguish between the plotters themselves, and all those who aided and abetted the coverup of the crime, for they are not synonymous. Quick hypothetical example: You are John McCone and you arrive at your office on the morning of 11/23/63. You are handed a report indicating a few of your lower level operatives may have played a part in the prior day's events. You have two stark choices: 1) you go public with what you know, which will not resurrect the dead President, but will surely lead to the evisceration of your own Agency, the last bulwark against Godless Communism, thereby leaving your country in ruins; or, 2) you keep your mouth shut, bury the report, contribute to the necessary ensuing obfuscation of the details and pray to your God for forgiveness.

The fact that you - McCone - have contributed to the coverup in no way implicates you as a plotter, nor in any way suggests you had any witting foreknowledge of the event. It means only that for the sake of your own institution's continued existence, which you deem of paramount importance, and for the sake of ensuring your country isn't castigated as some banana republic where democracy is merely a bad joke, you have committed the lesser of two evils.

It is a common failing to assume that all those who participated in the coverup must also, ergo, have been witting participants in the crime. It is a logical fallacy, and must be eschewed at all costs, for otherwise there will never be any truth disclosed.

For my own purposes, I try to avoid vague and amorphous terms such as "they" and "the powers that be," both because they are imprecise and open to misinterpretation, and because such terms serve no useful purpose to my own way of thinking. While I am happy to entertain any notional mental exercise that might identify all those who conspired to kill the President, I refrain from making assertions against any individual unless and until I think I've encountered sufficiently weighty evidence to make those allegations. Sweeping generalizations of who must have been involved don't do credit to any of us, unless we bolster those assertions with indisputable, legally compelling hard fact. To do otherwise is to become a "buff," which I am not and don't intend to become.

Robert, you are, as always, the very soul of reason.

I must confess I've got my fingers caught in the cookie jar in this thread,

speculation-wise, implicating people without a shred of direct proof. I've tried

hard to avoid this in the past -- it is, after all, treason and murder we are charging.

That said, I think there is sufficient evidence to make 3 guys top suspects:

Edward Lansdale, David Morales, and David Atlee Phillips.

Whether this evidence is of sufficient legal weight is certainly arguable.

(Dammit, Jim, I'm just a poker dealer!) :rolleyes:

As for the 3 transportation tycoons I mentioned in prior posts, I'd be better

off continuing my studies, and will withhold comment prior to more rigorous

investigation, as it were.

Any criminal investigator begins at the bottom of the crime's possible pyramid of characters and then works his way up the food chain, using the lower echelon players to implicate those higher up. Frustrating, slow and tedious as this methodology might be, it is used for a reason; it leads to unimpeachable evidence that reasonable people can agree carries legal weight. It is my goal to employ such tactics, because they yield the most fruit.

Consequently, without wishing to appear as though I'm trying to absolve LBJ, Harriman or anyone else in such high positions of power, I refrain from making such assertions because I've yet to see sufficient proof of their involvement; by which I mean evidence that carries legal weight, not just what might be inferred from suggestive facts. Unfortunately, in the absence of many such legally probative details, we are all reduced to a degree of speculation, which I don't seek to discourage, but must stress should be done without causing offense to either common sense or the facts on the ground, such as they are.

Cliff,

We are destined to disagree. But this is fun, so:

You quote Larry Hancock thusly: "[We should] first view the conspiracy to frame Oswald as a Castro (or both Cuban and Soviet associated) conspirator, a plan that became totally unraveled when Oswald was taken into custody. And second, we see that the so-called 'cover-up' was an independent, largely unplanned and highly reactive effort to ensure that a Lee Harvey Oswald would [take] the fall all by himself -- as a lone nut."

I truly dig disagreeing with experts and other correspondents for whom I harbor the utmost respect; in the former category I place RCD and LH. And your expertise is also highly valued. That being said ... you're all so very wrong!

The conspiracy to frame Oswald as a Cuban and/or Soviet conspirator did not come close to unraveling -- although I'm willing to stipulate that the patsy's survival to 11/24 might have minimally frayed an edge of the plot's fabric.

My proof? In spite of (as you might put it) Oswald's survival, the legend of his commie sponsorship was strong enough to convince the likes of Earl Warren and others to shut up and support the LN lie.

Which does not mean this was the plotters' intent, only that it is how things played out. If you have some probative proof that this was the plotters' intent, then you can make a case for your claim. What we have from you at present is vehemently stated opinion, which is no substitute for reasons to believe that opinion.

Further, I've yet to read anyone's explantion of how a living LHO could have said or done anything to scuttle an invasion plan that in turn could not be tossed into the memory hole.

Get creative. Write the scene. What does Oswald have to say? To whom does he say it?

Nothing. To nobody. He evaporates.

A dead Commie would have worked just as well as a disappeared Commie.

Once Kennedy was dead, the only hitch that could queer the plot was exactly

what happened: the patsy captured alive.

Oswald could have been struck mute in the Texas Theater, cooler feet would

still have prevailed: no invasion.

(SNIP for brevity)

I say again the following, as clearly as I can and hopefully for the final time as this is getting truly tedious. The plotters desired two things: the removal of a President who had been obstinately refusing the rebuffing their plans on a number of fronts [not merely Cuba, so don't misread what I haven't written] and foresaw the additional benefit of regime change in Cuba. An at least superficially Cuban-sponsored assassin was their means to achieve this. Irrespective of whether there was a fully formed plan by the US military to invade Cuba extant minutes before the assassination, there most assuredly would have been one within minutes after the assassination, had the plotters' aim succeeded in doing more than merely murdering the President [which, by the way, could have been achieved at any time, just about anywhere, without involving anything more than a lone psycho.] Those who insist I'm claiming this was "all about Cuba" are purposefully missing the point. No it wasn't all about Cuba; they wanted the President dead. Period. Full stop. But, if a bit of clever planning on their part also yielded the return of Cuba as a US vassal state, so much the better. Two birds; one stone.

And this is where you and I diverge some, Robert. A distinction needs

to be drawn between personal agendas, and the overall goal of the operation. Some

of the plotters, I would speculate, had their own vital personal interests in seeing JFK

dead, but for others his death was incidental, the collateral damage of a failed plot.

Thus I find JFK's death ancillary, the primary goal having failed.

No, it wasn't all about Cuba, but reclaiming Cuba was the one goal

all the plotters shared, the operational aim, the action item around which

the plot was organized. JFK's death served individual agendas -- it did nothing

for the group.

(snip for brevity)

The invasion of Cuba didn't happen because the sponsors of the assassination didn't want it to happen. Never did.

I find the following intriguing, although not dispositive by any means.

A passage from the Feb. 4 '07 Education Forum JFK post by Robert Howard:

"A Letter to the American People...on the Unspeakable, by James W. Douglass"

(quote on)

Myron Billett was a messenger and go-between for Chicago Mafia don,

Sam Giancana. In January l968 Giancana asked Billett to make the

arrangements for "a very important meeting" between New York Mafia

leader Carlo Gambino and some government representatives. Billett set

up the meeting at a motel in Apalachin, New York, the site of an early l960s

mob summit.

Billett said that at the meeting (which he attended) the three representatives

of the CIA and FBI asked Carlo Gambino if he would accept a $l million contract

to assassinate Martin Luther King. Billett recalled the exact words of Gambino's

reply: "In no way would I or the family get involved with you people again. You

messed up the Cuba deal. You messed up the Kennedy deal."

The CIA and FBI men said they would make "other arrangements" and departed.

(quote off)

You can state this, as though it were fact, based upon what, other than supposition?

And yes, perhaps LHO's short-term, post-assassination survival did necessitate improvisations on the plot's basic theme. Merde happens. Any plotters worth the name understand this, and prepare to react if need be.

But wait, you say. The evidence against LHO as lone nut is so weak, today no one in his or her right mind could possibly accept it without challenge ...

Yeah, yeah, yeah. Has the parent state ever truly abandoned the LN lie (HSCA's conclusion notwithstanding -- anything)? Is not the parent state's imprimatur still the only endorsement that counts? That is powerful enough to deny justice?

WHAT IF LHO dies on 11/22/63? Nothing else changes. The faux commie connections still function to disarm honest investigators, the LN lie still is promoted.

And yet I have never suggested that Oswald was to die, at least not in any public fashion. Somebody, irrespective of whom, had to walk across that tarmac in Mexico City to flee to Havana, or at least be reported to have done so. "Oswald" couldn't have done that if he were either publicly known to be dead or in police custody, which is the rub.

WHAT IF the LN "evidence" is transparently bogus? Which it is. The parent state endorses it, so it is official, which means it is as real and as powerful and as persuasive as it has to be to protect the sponsors and their great game.

None of my previously referenced facilitators/false sponsors -- including LBJ and JEH and the JCS -- had the power to do anything about the Cuba disappointment.

Feel free to reference whatever facilitators/false sponsors you like - but in light of the scenario I've described above, none of those you've named would have had the power to withstand the desire of the populace to exact revenge upon Castro.

Cuba was marginalized. Cuba was an asset.

Again, presenting evidence for this contention, rather than just the contention, would be most helpful, not least to your own case. I realize there are those who think the US has been entirely sanguine about Castro remaining in power since 1959, and that the threat he hypothetically poses only bolsters Pentagon demands for more funds, etc. However, this misses a few points. Surely the Pentagon hasn't been so bereft of other similarly threatening states that the overthrow of Castro would have put the Pentagon out of business. There were other threats to justify keeping the Pentagon around, were there not? Moreover, how does one justify presenting the Pentagon with ever greater budgetary appropriations if they never actually do anything with the money?

All eyes turned far eastward.

I used to find this argument more compelling before

I listened to this:

http://tapes.millercenter.virginia.edu/cli...nam_memoir.html

It seems to me that the Commander-in-Chief was AWOL on the Diem coup,

and was not firmly in control (to say the least) of American foreign policy

in SE Asia.

Further into pure speculation -- if Kennedy had lived there still would have

been a Gulf of Tonkin Incident amidst a US Presidential campaign, and the US

would have sent ground troops into South Vietnam, Kennedy or no Kennedy.

Only because “The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men / Gang aft a-gley.” Had Oswald been presumed to reside in Havana after the assassination, all eyes would have turned southward, in a heartbeat. Followed by boots on the ground and death from above.

Your serve.

Charles

Edited by Cliff Varnell

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If the motive was the overthrow of Castro, they achieved nothing by killing JFK.

Right, I agree with this statement, even if you believe it came from a different entity. John Kennedy died in vain. And Castro is still in power 44 years later.

Kathy

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I notice the extensive use in this thread of LBJ TAPE TRANSCRIPTS.

It must be remembered THAT LYNDON KNEW HE WAS BEING TAPED AND

PLAYED TO THE MICROPHONE, MAKING "SELF-SERVING" STATEMENTS.

Thus you can heavily discount anything he says as being staged deliberately

for later "proof of innocence".

Jack

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