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Steve Jaffe

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About Steve Jaffe

  • Birthday 02/14/1944

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    www.SteveJaffePR.com

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    Former staff investigator for N.O. DA Jim Garrison, forensics analyst exclusively assigned to JFK case, 1967-1968. Testified before Rockefeller Commission March, 1975. Currently writing forthcoming book. Produced documentary with Mark Lane narrated by Martin Sheen being offered on "JFK-CAPA.com" or "JFK-CAPA.org" and was supervising producer/tech consultant for theatrical feature film "Executive Action," starring Burt Lancaster (1974). Assisted, as associate prod./technical consultant, filmmaker John Barbour on his two "Garrison Tapes" documentaries. For the past years, Jaffe worked with author, editor, the late James Wagenvoord of LIFE Magazine/Time-Life Inc., on the history of the case as published in LIFE Magazine. Nevertheless, Jaffe plans to release a book next November about his forensic photo evidence which he first examined in 67-68 for DA Garrison.

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  1. Yes. I was the first of DA Jim Garrison's staff to read the book in manuscript form, other than Garrison himself. The book was a composite of chapters from different intelligence sources primarily put together by a French Intelligence operative at a very high level. The manuscript of the book later published as "Farewell America" (not the original title) was sent to my boss, Jim Garrison, the New Orleans D.A. It was intended to expose the fact that there was a plot (its original title, by the way, was "The Plot"). James Hepburn was not the author's real name. "James Hepburn" in French means "I love Hepburn" which was the reason he picked the name. He had met and fallen in love with the actress, though he never, to this investigator's knowledge, had an affair with her. His name was Herve Lamarre. "Farewell America" had some interesting history in it, and was not badly written but it largely blamed the powerful leaders of the US oil industry for the plot to assassinate the president. It definitely missed the mark and was more of a misinformation book leading away from the real plotters.
  2. Calvin: I think your list is well put together in terms of knowing the facts of the case but I suggest you read the book that started it all, Mark Lane's Rush to Judgment and his other books, such as Plausible Denial). You should also read James DiEugenio's Destiny Betrayed, "JFK Revisited" (documentary) and "JFK" (made into films by Oliver Stone). That way you get a view of the evidence from the point of view of a criminal defense attorney who was also someone who successfully "prosecuted" the case in a trial court. It's also necessary to understand the case from a high level member of the intelligence world like Col. Fletcher Prouty who wrote JFK: The CIA, Vietnam and the Plot to Assassinate John F. Kennedy.
  3. I have not posted in a while for various reasons as we are now approaching the 60th anniversary. But throughout my life I have often been asked what shall we read?... because I always lead with the fact that if someone really wants to know the truth they can find it in what has been written already. The guest post of 8/24/20 is a good list but I have trimmed it and added a few of my choice for what are truly well researched and well written books. Fletcher Prouty's book, JFK: The CIA, Vietnam. and the Plot to Assassinate John F. Kennedy, should be on everyone's list. Prof. Josiah Thompson's books, Six Seconds in Dallas and The Last Second in Dallas are historic works that must be read. The three major photographic books with wise analysis by Robert Groden are part of our history and answer to the question, "Who Killed JFK?" There's no question that the film work of Oliver Stone ("JFK") and James DiEugenio, "JFK Revisited" (in 2 parts or better in 4 parts) are the strongest glue we have that has stuck to the subject of John F. Kennedy's murder and brought it forward six decades so that it could be understood in its historical context. We have some books to look forward to, I happen to know. But let it be a lesson to us all that films, images with actors and directors whether they are streamed or seen on a screen, will be our history books of the future from this moment on. It may appear on social media -- as tortured that concept might be -- but it will show us things with great technological flair that will bring us closer to the truth. The great documentaries by John Barbour, "The JFK Assassination: The Jim Garrison Tapes," the only filmmaker who got a full personal interview with the DA, who was my boss for two years near the end of the 60's which allow you to hear the answers from the people who investigated the people who killed President Kennedy. To the books that were listed by the Guest poster, I would include his list -- well not all but some -- and fill it out with my own contributions. So look at this list for answers and keep on digging. Those of us who were involved in the early investigations, the hand-to-hand combat, if you will, are making our work available because of our dedication. It has not always been that way. And until now, when the sleepy media or the MSM or the people trying to exploit the existence of conspiracies which changed history in reality (for their own personal gain/reasons), we have had less work to do to find the truth even though it was masterfully covered up by Dulles, Hoover, Helms, David A. Phillips, and one of the masters of it all -- James J. Angleton and those top guys making policy. Of course there were people like Henry Wade, Jesse Curry and Captain Fritz but they were down on the lower floor of the cover-up. There will be new names to our readers such as William Harvey, who intelligence sources gave me as a perfect operator, though hardly a perfect patriot. Frank Sturges (Fiorini) and E. Howard Hunt and his buddy, G. Gordon Liddy. But there are names that will never surface because unlike David Ferrie, Guy Bannister and Clay Shaw, true assassins don't leave a trail, or a note, or a souvenir. But there were courageous players such as Marita Lorenz who told the truth one too many times so she was labeled "doing it for the money." What about under penalty of perjury? These are essential books by serious authors who know what happened because they were there: First of all -- Read everything about this case by Dr. Cyril Wecht, the most knowledgeable forensic pathologist on the JFK case. And then read these: 1) James W Douglass - JFK & The Unspeakable 2) David Talbot - Brothers 4) Peter Janney - Mary’s Mosaic 7) David Talbot - The Devils Chessboard 3) Mark Lane - Rush to Judgment, Plausible Denial, Citizen's Dissent and The Last Word 5) Dick Russell: The Man Who Knew Too Much; On the Trail of the Assassins 6) Jim Garrison: On the Trail of the Assassins and Heritage of Stone and hopefully, soon, 8 - Stephen Jaffe: Shadow of Doubt - One Fact from a JFK Investigator's Notebook I wish that I could give you all the names of the books to read to see the whole picture because that's impossible. It has been mixed up in the current era of what Trump calls "Fake News" which just serves as a lens cover for people to find it impossible to see the images of fact. However, I make this promise. If I can live long enough to publish my book and travel to talk through the media about the subject of President Kennedy's assassination, I am devoted to that.
  4. JFK COMMUNITY LOSES ARDENT FIGHTER FOR TRUTH: JAMES WAGENVOORD

    Tragically, my friend and co-author, James Wagenvoord, a former editor at LIFE Magazine (in 1963) and prolific author (43 books) passed away last July. We were both scheduled to speak at the CAPA Conference in Dallas next month. CAPA was founded by Dr. Cyril Wecht, MD, JD, who has been a leading expert on the case of the assassination of JFK for all these years. I worked for DA Jim Garrison in 1967-68 as a forensic photo analyst and my memoranda were all submitted to the DA prior to the trial. After he left office many of the DA's files were destroyed or stolen. But I have kept copies of my work. James Wagenvoord, who was also a director of business affairs for LIFE, involved in the Stolley-Zapruder transaction for acquisition of the Zapruder film, and we had an interesting story to tell when we compared notes. Sadly, that book can never be written now. I will introduce a clip (November 20, 4 PM) of James' incredible story which was recorded for one of the prior CAPA conferences. He put his career on the line at LIFE (Time-Life, Inc.) to tell the truth about the case and was shortly thereafter fired. I hope that you'll attend or watch online (CAPA website: www.JFK-CAPA.ORG, or www.CAPA-US.ORG) or join and watch the entire video of the two days of lectures some time this year. 

  5. Chris, I agree with your observation that the greatest miscalculation made by JFK and RFK was that the true seat of power was necessarily restricted to the presidency. JFK was wrong to so inflexibly take on the top brass of the long-time leaders of the CIA and be so outspoken about ultimate removal of a foreign policy influencing (albeit covert) agency of the federal government. In fact those who ran the intelligence community, such as it was, were far more adept at coups and covert actions than any other part of the government. Add to that the concept of why LBJ was an asset in the 1960 election -- it follows that for those "rich and powerful" people and "financial interests" who had been in charge of the levers of power for decades before, it was not great for JFK to have LBJ one heartbeat away from the Oval. The plot was masterful, JFK was on record as being "courageous" but also a believer in both his faith and fate. The idealism of JFK and RFK combined, was truly a profile in courage, but their assessment of the powers who opposed them was horribly flawed. And there were several. Jim Douglass is a marvelous investigator and an excellent writer. He would hold a jury's attention if he were to try this case. From what I learned as an assistant/investigator to Garrison and Lane, I don't think the evidence is ambiguous at all. Add J. Edgar Hoover, a master at writing reports based on his agents reports (i.e. cover-ups). He served LBJ, his longtime neighbor and friend. The cover-up was brilliantly planned and executed. The Warren Report was really the Dulles Report. The plot was not as brilliant but certainly very professional. And the plotters were not in such a hurry that it had to take place in Dallas. It just had to happen. -- Steve Jaffe
  6. Joe: Julia Ann Mercer, Roger Craig. We definitely took them seriously. Both gave statements under penalty of perjury. Both were extremely detailed in describing what they witnessed. Both were ignored by the Warren Commission.
  7. The more important question is why they used his middle name. Was this common for employees of the TSBD?
  8. In fact, I never read about a time clock. But I definitely read where Oswald left in the middle of the day to go to the movies! We even spoke to several witnesses who saw him leave, one who said he even got a ride from Jack Ruby.
  9. I have to agree with David Andrews about the alleged Oswald paycheck. In 75 years, I have never had a paycheck made out to me using my middle name. Has anyone else? I have often been asked questions about "Lee Harvey Oswald" and I normally ask, "Do you mean Lee Oswald?" That's what we called him in the DA's office. I doubt that the accountant for the TSBD was holding back Oswald's pay for Friday, though it says in the report I read that his check was for 4 days work. Was it because he failed to move the boxes to which he was assigned or did they feel he wasn't entitled to the Friday pay because he left early? I am also concerned to know how the payroll clerk missed the news of what happened at the TSBD, on Friday, November 22nd. It was widely covered in the press.
  10. This is an endless and interesting argument but of the doctors at Parkland who I talked to who saw President Kennedy when he was first brought in, they all referred to the throat wound as an "entrance wound." If one of those Parkland attending physicians changed that view, who was it and where is it written that they said it could have been an exit wound?
  11. Denis: I'm replying to your inquiry though I have not had time to review all these examples of correspondence and evidence. While I recall talking to Sprague by phone and writing a memo or two about our communications to Garrison, I did not keep any of that correspondence (that I know of at this time). I'm still working on my book and digging through old papers. I've seen my name associated with Sprague relative to some references in the National Archives. I am planning to go back there to review the Garrison files later this year. If I find anything, I'll be sure to let you know.
  12. In all my over a half-century of knowing Mark Lane and working with him, I never ceased to be amazed by the fact that he embodied what JFK had said about how one man could make a difference. I'm amazed that his courage was considered so dangerous to those in power that they had him followed, kept detailed records of his public appearances, private meetings and much of what he said, and then stamped it all, "Secret."
  13. I think that most scholars and authors of the assassination of President Kennedy would agree that James Douglass' book, JFK AND THE UNSPEAKABLE - Why He Died & Why It Matters, is one of the most important and enlightening of the well researched books on the case. From the opening chronology to the insights into the powerful, even lethal opposition experienced by both JFK and RFK from CIA and the Joint Chiefs, to the back channels created through the Pope and with author Norman Cousins to Chairman Khrushchev, this well written work merges perfectly with the extraordinary memoir by Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., AMERICAN VALUES: Lessons I learned from my family, just published by HarperCollins (which I will review at a later date). If one is interested in learning a lot about the assassinations of the President and his brother, the Attorney General, these two books are certainly on the short list with those by James DiEugenio, David Talbot, Peter Janney, Dick Russell, William Davy, Joan Mellen, Fletcher Prouty, Gaeton Fonzi, Mark Lane and Jim Garrison. This is an important time for people to learn the truth about what happened and what was expertly covered up by the Dulles-Angleton-Phillips-Helms-Johnson group and others. What these books demonstrate so clearly is that the manipulation of the media in terms of nailing "patsy" Oswald was more masterful than the actual assassination plot itself.
  14. Jim: I agree. While the cover-up was clearly meant to be used to persuade people that Russia was "behind it" or, at least, that LHO was a Communist, that was simply not true. I think Jim Douglass' book, JFK and the Unspeakable, makes it quite clear that JFK and Khrushchev used their "back channel" to communicate in a very positive dialogue to find ways to reduce nuclear proliferation and pave the way for peace. Dick Russell's work shows how the KGB tried to upset the plot. And the work of those writers and yourself, supports such findings. No one needed to tell LBJ what was going to happen to be able to trust how he would react. RFK's ability to find out what happened to JFK was comprehensive and very quick. I know that there was very little that RFK didn't know about the facts of what happened, despite his decision with EMK and the others, to leave it alone until RFK could be elected.
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