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Walter Cronkite RIP


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Most Trusted Man in America - Got Most Important Story in His Life Wrong -

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/2009/07/17...dead_at_92.html

Cronkite, mentor to Dan Rather, anchored their careers on the Kennedy assassination, and the CBS News network, with credibility firmly established by Edward R. Morrow, became the Mockingbird backbone of the Lone Nut cover story, and guilty of trying to sell it, hook line and sinker, to a still disbelieving public.

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By Todd Leopold

(CNN) -- Walter Cronkite, the CBS anchorman known as "Uncle Walter" for his easygoing, measured delivery and "the most trusted man in America" for his rectitude and gravitas, has died, CBS reported Friday.

Walter Cronkite, former CBS anchor known as "Uncle Walter," has died.

Cronkite was 92.

"Walter was always more than just an anchor. He was someone we could trust to guide us through the most important issues of the day; a voice of certainty in an uncertain world," President Obama said in a statement Friday.

"He was family. He invited us to believe in him, and he never let us down. This country has lost an icon and a dear friend, and he will be truly missed."

His career spanned much of the 20th century, as well as the first decade of the 21st.

The native of St. Joseph, Missouri, broke in as a newspaper journalist while in college, switched over to radio announcing in 1935, joined the United Press wire service by the end of the decade and jumped to CBS and its nascent television news division in 1950.

He also made his mark as an Internet contributor in his later years with a handful of columns for the Huffington Post.

"He was the consummate television newsman," Don Hewitt, the onetime executive producer of the "CBS Evening News," told CNN. "He had all the credentials to be a writer, an editor, a broadcaster. There was only one Walter Cronkite, and there may never be another one."

Cronkite covered World War II's Battle of the Bulge, the Nuremberg trials, several presidential elections, moon landings, the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and the Watergate scandal of President Richard Nixon's administration. Photo Cronkite's life in photos »

At times he even made news: A 1977 question to then-Egyptian President Anwar Sadat about Sadat's intent to go to Israel -- at the time considered a nonstarter because of the lack of a treaty between the two countries -- received a surprising "yes" from the Egyptian leader.

Soon after, Sadat traveled to Jerusalem, a trip that eventually led to the Camp David Accords, which included a peace deal between Israel and Egypt.

At his height of influence as CBS anchorman, Cronkite's judgment was believed so important it could affect even presidents. In early 1968, after the Tet Offensive, Cronkite traveled to Vietnam and gave a critical editorial calling the Vietnam War "mired in stalemate." Video Watch an overview of Cronkite's life »

Noting Cronkite's commentary, President Lyndon Johnson reportedly said, "If I've lost Cronkite, I've lost Middle America." Johnson announced he would not seek re-election less than two months later.

Cronkite's own name was often floated as a presidential possibility -- wishful thinking on the part of some pundits, because Cronkite had little desire to enter politics once he'd become a successful anchorman.

He became, however, an outspoken critic of what he saw as flaws in government and broadcast journalism. He disliked the current war in Iraq, telling Esquire magazine, "Indeed, we are in another Vietnam. Almost play by play. It's a terrible mistake that we're in Iraq, and it's a terrible mistake to insist on staying there."

And he disliked the corporatization of news.

"The nation whose population depends on the explosively compressed headline service of television news can expect to be exploited by the demagogues and dictators who prey upon the semi-informed," he wrote in his 1996 memoir, "A Reporter's Life."

In a 2005 interview with CNN's Wolf Blitzer, he observed, "The misfortune with broadcasting today is that all -- even including your network, which is dedicated to the news -- do not take enough time to give us all of the facts and the background."

"Walter was truly the father of television news. The trust that viewers placed in him was based on the recognition of his fairness, honesty and strict objectivity," said "60 Minutes" correspondent Morley Safer in a statement.

"And of course, his long experience as a shoe-leather reporter covering everything from local politics to World War II and its aftermath in the Soviet Union."

Mike Wallace, "60 Minutes" correspondent emeritus, said simply: "We were proud to work with him -- for him -- we loved him."

Premiere journalist of 20th century is born

Walter Leland Cronkite Jr. was born in St. Joseph, Missouri, on November 4, 1916. His father was a dentist, and Cronkite, who admired the man greatly, grew his famous mustache in emulation of his father.

The family moved to Kansas City soon after, and when he was 10, moved again to Houston, Texas. He remembered being attached to news at an early age, from delivering newspapers to starting a high school publication. Cronkite attended the University of Texas in Austin, but dropped out of college in 1935 after gaining a full-time job as a newspaper reporter.

He moved to Kansas City for a radio job at KCMO, where he was famed for his broadcasts of football game recreations. He would use wire reports about football games to broadcast what sounded like live, play-by-play commentary on the match.

It was in Kansas City that he also met his future wife, Betsy Maxwell, in the summer of 1936. The two married in 1940 and enjoyed almost 65 years of marriage. Betsy Cronkite died in 2005.

"She was one of the most beautiful people I ever saw in my life," he said in a PBS special. "I saw her for the first time ... coming down the hall ... and I fell in love before I ever knew her name, or what she did, or if I whether I would ever see her again in life."

Cronkite had a short stint with the United Press in 1937 -- "the KCMO experience," he wrote in "A Reporter's Life," "had cooled any thought I had that radio might be an interesting medium in which to practice journalism" -- but nevertheless, he joined an Oklahoma City station within a year to broadcast University of Oklahoma football games. After a detour with Braniff Airlines, he went back to the UP and the newspaper reporting he loved.

In 1942, after the United States' entry into World War II, he became a war correspondent, part of an elite corps of correspondents dubbed "the Writing 69th." As part of that unit, he accompanied a bomber on D-Day (the mission was thwarted by cloud cover) and flew on a number of dangerous sorties. After the war, he became the chief UP correspondent at the Nuremberg Trials for war crimes. He was widely admired; CBS tried to lure him into its Edward R. Murrow-led fold during the war, but Cronkite preferred being a newspaperman. Video Watch Cronkite remember WWII heroes »

Cronkite opened UP's Moscow, Russia, bureau after the war, but when the wire service tightened up on his salary in 1948, he decided to go back to radio at the urging of a friend who owned a radio station. He was the Washington correspondent for a radio group. Two years later, CBS came calling again, and this time Cronkite took the network up on its offer.

Into television news

But now the medium was television. Cronkite became the anchor of WTOP-TV, armed with little more than wire reports and his own skills, he recalled in his memoir.

Two years later, he broke into the national consciousness with his work at the 1952 political conventions, serving as CBS' "anchorman" -- a word coined to describe Cronkite's role as point person for the network's correspondents. Though there's some dispute as to who coined the word, Cronkite's influence was noted: in Sweden at the time, he recalled, anchormen were called "cronkiters."

But CBS News had a deep bench. The division was led by Murrow throughout the 1950s, and a number of other famous names -- Eric Sevareid, Douglas Edwards, Howard K. Smith -- were part of the team. Cronkite distinguished himself as CBS' lead space reporter as the United States and Soviet Union launched the space race. He never lost his taste for the beat, working with CNN on shuttle launches as recently as John Glenn's return mission in 1998.

In 1962, Cronkite took over as anchor of CBS' "Evening News" from Edwards. Television news was still in its infancy; the broadcast Cronkite delivered was 15 minutes long, dependent on sometimes day-old film, and in black and white. But with the Cold War, civil rights movement and the increasing rapidity of communications, the news business was changing. On September 2, 1963 -- Labor Day -- Cronkite's broadcast became a half-hour; the centerpiece was an extended interview with President John F. Kennedy. Video Watch Cronkite talk about moon landing, Kennedy »

A little less than three months later, Kennedy was assassinated. Cronkite's coverage of that event, including a rare display of emotion on camera -- as he broadcast the news of Kennedy's death from the CBS newsroom -- helped cement his status.

However, for the first half of the 1960s, Cronkite's broadcast was No. 2 to NBC's "Huntley-Brinkley Report," hosted by Chet Huntley and David Brinkley. It wasn't until later in the decade that Cronkite and CBS overtook the NBC team for the No. 1 position, a mark it would hold for the rest of Cronkite's 19-year tenure.

"Uncle Walter" increasingly became the most-admired figure in the news media. His sign-off, "And that's the way it is," became a national catch-phrase. His coverage of moon missions was legendary, with his ability to anchor, unperturbed, for hour upon hour, earning him the affectionate nickname "Old Iron Pants."

Another rare example of Cronkite showing emotion on air was the joy he expressed at Apollo 11's 1969 moon landing: "Man on the moon!" he exulted, rubbing his hands in delight.

'Most trusted man in America'

In 1973, a poll named him "the most trusted man in America." The anchorman had been one of the few TV journalists to note the import of Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein's reporting on Watergate and helped prompt CBS into following the story aggressively.

The network broadcast two extended segments and a special on the affair just before the 1972 election. Cronkite was helped immensely by CBS' then White House correspondent, Dan Rather, who became one of Nixon's least favorite reporters with his determined questioning at White House press conferences.

Rather's and Cronkite's lives would cross again several years later. By the end of the 1970s, television news had become news itself, with Barbara Walters' million-dollar ABC contract in 1976 making headlines. The race to succeed Cronkite, who was nearing 65 and announced his forthcoming retirement in 1980, became a national focus. Video Watch CNN's John Roberts talk about Cronkite's influence on him »

In the end, Rather won the battle to succeed Cronkite over Roger Mudd, who was Cronkite's regular fill-in. Cronkite gave his last "Evening News" broadcast on March 6, 1981. His successor had a number of up-and-down years, which Cronkite watched from a distance. The two anchors were not "especially chummy," Cronkite once said.

In his later years, Cronkite -- who became a CBS board member -- distinguished himself with various news specials, but was disappointed he wasn't allowed to take a greater role at CBS.

"I want to say that probably 24 hours after I told CBS that I was stepping down at my 65th birthday, I was already regretting it. And I regretted it every day since," he once said.

He had planned to do documentaries for the network, as well as continue his summer science series "Walter Cronkite's Universe," but the series was canceled in 1982, and CBS was devoting fewer resources to documentaries. He also stayed physically active, an energetic tennis player and sailor.

Cronkite received dozens of awards during his life, including a number of Emmys and Peabodys. In 1981, he was awarded the nation's highest civilian honor, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, by Jimmy Carter.

He also played himself in movies and on TV, including memorable episodes of "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" and "Murphy Brown."

But he never lost his zest for reporting, nor his opinions about the news media. His daughter, Kathy, played a Patty Hearst-like character in the scabrous 1976 movie "Network," a film Cronkite said "was all comedy" to him, though he shared beliefs in its message. He disparaged what he called "fluff" and constantly exhorted news departments to focus on hard news -- without opinion.

"Our job is only to hold up the mirror -- to tell and show the public what has happened," he once said.

Cronkite is survived by his three children, Nancy, Kathy and Walter III "Chip"; and four grandchildren.

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http://www.cnn.com/2009/US/07/17/walter.cr...dead/index.html

Hey Robert,

It looks like we're on the same wave length.

You can't just call him an icon, he's an icon who got the JFK assassination wrong, and wrongfully tried to sell it like P. T. Barnum.

I actually met Uncle Walter, on Bill Packer's schooner Scotch Mist in Freemantle, Australia during the America's Cup sailboat regatta. I was too polite to call him out in public among our friends, and when I finally got him alone it wasn't that important at the time.

But I don't think we should let him off the hook for what CBS news has done in regards to the assassination of JFK.

BK

By Todd Leopold

(CNN) -- Walter Cronkite, the CBS anchorman known as "Uncle Walter" for his easygoing, measured delivery and "the most trusted man in America" for his rectitude and gravitas, has died, CBS reported Friday.

Walter Cronkite, former CBS anchor known as "Uncle Walter," has died.

Cronkite was 92.

"Walter was always more than just an anchor. He was someone we could trust to guide us through the most important issues of the day; a voice of certainty in an uncertain world," President Obama said in a statement Friday.

"He was family. He invited us to believe in him, and he never let us down. This country has lost an icon and a dear friend, and he will be truly missed."

His career spanned much of the 20th century, as well as the first decade of the 21st.

The native of St. Joseph, Missouri, broke in as a newspaper journalist while in college, switched over to radio announcing in 1935, joined the United Press wire service by the end of the decade and jumped to CBS and its nascent television news division in 1950.

He also made his mark as an Internet contributor in his later years with a handful of columns for the Huffington Post.

"He was the consummate television newsman," Don Hewitt, the onetime executive producer of the "CBS Evening News," told CNN. "He had all the credentials to be a writer, an editor, a broadcaster. There was only one Walter Cronkite, and there may never be another one."

Cronkite covered World War II's Battle of the Bulge, the Nuremberg trials, several presidential elections, moon landings, the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and the Watergate scandal of President Richard Nixon's administration. Photo Cronkite's life in photos »

At times he even made news: A 1977 question to then-Egyptian President Anwar Sadat about Sadat's intent to go to Israel -- at the time considered a nonstarter because of the lack of a treaty between the two countries -- received a surprising "yes" from the Egyptian leader.

Soon after, Sadat traveled to Jerusalem, a trip that eventually led to the Camp David Accords, which included a peace deal between Israel and Egypt.

At his height of influence as CBS anchorman, Cronkite's judgment was believed so important it could affect even presidents. In early 1968, after the Tet Offensive, Cronkite traveled to Vietnam and gave a critical editorial calling the Vietnam War "mired in stalemate." Video Watch an overview of Cronkite's life »

Noting Cronkite's commentary, President Lyndon Johnson reportedly said, "If I've lost Cronkite, I've lost Middle America." Johnson announced he would not seek re-election less than two months later.

Cronkite's own name was often floated as a presidential possibility -- wishful thinking on the part of some pundits, because Cronkite had little desire to enter politics once he'd become a successful anchorman.

He became, however, an outspoken critic of what he saw as flaws in government and broadcast journalism. He disliked the current war in Iraq, telling Esquire magazine, "Indeed, we are in another Vietnam. Almost play by play. It's a terrible mistake that we're in Iraq, and it's a terrible mistake to insist on staying there."

And he disliked the corporatization of news.

"The nation whose population depends on the explosively compressed headline service of television news can expect to be exploited by the demagogues and dictators who prey upon the semi-informed," he wrote in his 1996 memoir, "A Reporter's Life."

In a 2005 interview with CNN's Wolf Blitzer, he observed, "The misfortune with broadcasting today is that all -- even including your network, which is dedicated to the news -- do not take enough time to give us all of the facts and the background."

"Walter was truly the father of television news. The trust that viewers placed in him was based on the recognition of his fairness, honesty and strict objectivity," said "60 Minutes" correspondent Morley Safer in a statement.

"And of course, his long experience as a shoe-leather reporter covering everything from local politics to World War II and its aftermath in the Soviet Union."

Mike Wallace, "60 Minutes" correspondent emeritus, said simply: "We were proud to work with him -- for him -- we loved him."

Premiere journalist of 20th century is born

Walter Leland Cronkite Jr. was born in St. Joseph, Missouri, on November 4, 1916. His father was a dentist, and Cronkite, who admired the man greatly, grew his famous mustache in emulation of his father.

The family moved to Kansas City soon after, and when he was 10, moved again to Houston, Texas. He remembered being attached to news at an early age, from delivering newspapers to starting a high school publication. Cronkite attended the University of Texas in Austin, but dropped out of college in 1935 after gaining a full-time job as a newspaper reporter.

He moved to Kansas City for a radio job at KCMO, where he was famed for his broadcasts of football game recreations. He would use wire reports about football games to broadcast what sounded like live, play-by-play commentary on the match.

It was in Kansas City that he also met his future wife, Betsy Maxwell, in the summer of 1936. The two married in 1940 and enjoyed almost 65 years of marriage. Betsy Cronkite died in 2005.

"She was one of the most beautiful people I ever saw in my life," he said in a PBS special. "I saw her for the first time ... coming down the hall ... and I fell in love before I ever knew her name, or what she did, or if I whether I would ever see her again in life."

Cronkite had a short stint with the United Press in 1937 -- "the KCMO experience," he wrote in "A Reporter's Life," "had cooled any thought I had that radio might be an interesting medium in which to practice journalism" -- but nevertheless, he joined an Oklahoma City station within a year to broadcast University of Oklahoma football games. After a detour with Braniff Airlines, he went back to the UP and the newspaper reporting he loved.

In 1942, after the United States' entry into World War II, he became a war correspondent, part of an elite corps of correspondents dubbed "the Writing 69th." As part of that unit, he accompanied a bomber on D-Day (the mission was thwarted by cloud cover) and flew on a number of dangerous sorties. After the war, he became the chief UP correspondent at the Nuremberg Trials for war crimes. He was widely admired; CBS tried to lure him into its Edward R. Murrow-led fold during the war, but Cronkite preferred being a newspaperman. Video Watch Cronkite remember WWII heroes »

Cronkite opened UP's Moscow, Russia, bureau after the war, but when the wire service tightened up on his salary in 1948, he decided to go back to radio at the urging of a friend who owned a radio station. He was the Washington correspondent for a radio group. Two years later, CBS came calling again, and this time Cronkite took the network up on its offer.

Into television news

But now the medium was television. Cronkite became the anchor of WTOP-TV, armed with little more than wire reports and his own skills, he recalled in his memoir.

Two years later, he broke into the national consciousness with his work at the 1952 political conventions, serving as CBS' "anchorman" -- a word coined to describe Cronkite's role as point person for the network's correspondents. Though there's some dispute as to who coined the word, Cronkite's influence was noted: in Sweden at the time, he recalled, anchormen were called "cronkiters."

But CBS News had a deep bench. The division was led by Murrow throughout the 1950s, and a number of other famous names -- Eric Sevareid, Douglas Edwards, Howard K. Smith -- were part of the team. Cronkite distinguished himself as CBS' lead space reporter as the United States and Soviet Union launched the space race. He never lost his taste for the beat, working with CNN on shuttle launches as recently as John Glenn's return mission in 1998.

In 1962, Cronkite took over as anchor of CBS' "Evening News" from Edwards. Television news was still in its infancy; the broadcast Cronkite delivered was 15 minutes long, dependent on sometimes day-old film, and in black and white. But with the Cold War, civil rights movement and the increasing rapidity of communications, the news business was changing. On September 2, 1963 -- Labor Day -- Cronkite's broadcast became a half-hour; the centerpiece was an extended interview with President John F. Kennedy. Video Watch Cronkite talk about moon landing, Kennedy »

A little less than three months later, Kennedy was assassinated. Cronkite's coverage of that event, including a rare display of emotion on camera -- as he broadcast the news of Kennedy's death from the CBS newsroom -- helped cement his status.

However, for the first half of the 1960s, Cronkite's broadcast was No. 2 to NBC's "Huntley-Brinkley Report," hosted by Chet Huntley and David Brinkley. It wasn't until later in the decade that Cronkite and CBS overtook the NBC team for the No. 1 position, a mark it would hold for the rest of Cronkite's 19-year tenure.

"Uncle Walter" increasingly became the most-admired figure in the news media. His sign-off, "And that's the way it is," became a national catch-phrase. His coverage of moon missions was legendary, with his ability to anchor, unperturbed, for hour upon hour, earning him the affectionate nickname "Old Iron Pants."

Another rare example of Cronkite showing emotion on air was the joy he expressed at Apollo 11's 1969 moon landing: "Man on the moon!" he exulted, rubbing his hands in delight.

'Most trusted man in America'

In 1973, a poll named him "the most trusted man in America." The anchorman had been one of the few TV journalists to note the import of Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein's reporting on Watergate and helped prompt CBS into following the story aggressively.

The network broadcast two extended segments and a special on the affair just before the 1972 election. Cronkite was helped immensely by CBS' then White House correspondent, Dan Rather, who became one of Nixon's least favorite reporters with his determined questioning at White House press conferences.

Rather's and Cronkite's lives would cross again several years later. By the end of the 1970s, television news had become news itself, with Barbara Walters' million-dollar ABC contract in 1976 making headlines. The race to succeed Cronkite, who was nearing 65 and announced his forthcoming retirement in 1980, became a national focus. Video Watch CNN's John Roberts talk about Cronkite's influence on him »

In the end, Rather won the battle to succeed Cronkite over Roger Mudd, who was Cronkite's regular fill-in. Cronkite gave his last "Evening News" broadcast on March 6, 1981. His successor had a number of up-and-down years, which Cronkite watched from a distance. The two anchors were not "especially chummy," Cronkite once said.

In his later years, Cronkite -- who became a CBS board member -- distinguished himself with various news specials, but was disappointed he wasn't allowed to take a greater role at CBS.

"I want to say that probably 24 hours after I told CBS that I was stepping down at my 65th birthday, I was already regretting it. And I regretted it every day since," he once said.

He had planned to do documentaries for the network, as well as continue his summer science series "Walter Cronkite's Universe," but the series was canceled in 1982, and CBS was devoting fewer resources to documentaries. He also stayed physically active, an energetic tennis player and sailor.

Cronkite received dozens of awards during his life, including a number of Emmys and Peabodys. In 1981, he was awarded the nation's highest civilian honor, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, by Jimmy Carter.

He also played himself in movies and on TV, including memorable episodes of "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" and "Murphy Brown."

But he never lost his zest for reporting, nor his opinions about the news media. His daughter, Kathy, played a Patty Hearst-like character in the scabrous 1976 movie "Network," a film Cronkite said "was all comedy" to him, though he shared beliefs in its message. He disparaged what he called "fluff" and constantly exhorted news departments to focus on hard news -- without opinion.

"Our job is only to hold up the mirror -- to tell and show the public what has happened," he once said.

Cronkite is survived by his three children, Nancy, Kathy and Walter III "Chip"; and four grandchildren.

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Cheering Walter Cronkite's death in the manner depicted on prison planet, is a little too much for me personally, although that is just an observation. Regarding Walter Cronkite, debating his part in maintaining the official version of John F Kennedy's death, is, like with regards to many other persons, an area where ultimately, opinion dominates the debate more than anything else.

I certainly agree with Bill that Cronkite and CBS maintaining a politically correct version of the assassination, is not an admirable aspect of American history, but what would have happened if say, Cronkite said to CBS this is a travesty I am not going to participate in it, what would have happened then?

That's what I mean, about opinion, you just don't know.

Another aspect, is that it appears there are at least eight documents that reference Walter at NARA.

Regarding taking that great leap to mentioning JFK and conspiracy in the same sentence take a look at one person who did so, and compare his career to Walter's.

Murphy Hints At Plot In Kennedy Murders

http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/...amp;relPageId=2

http://bioguide.congress.gov/scripts/biodi...l?index=m001092

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Cheering Walter Cronkite's death in the manner depicted on prison planet, is a little too much for me personally, although that is just an observation. Regarding Walter Cronkite, debating his part in maintaining the official version of John F Kennedy's death, is, like with regards to many other persons, an area where ultimately, opinion dominates the debate more than anything else.

I certainly agree with Bill that Cronkite and CBS maintaining a politically correct version of the assassination, is not an admirable aspect of American history, but what would have happened if say, Cronkite said to CBS this is a travesty I am not going to participate in it, what would have happened then?

That's what I mean, about opinion, you just don't know.

Another aspect, is that it appears there are at least eight documents that reference Walter at NARA.

Regarding taking that great leap to mentioning JFK and conspiracy in the same sentence take a look at one person who did so, and compare his career to Walter's.

Murphy Hints At Plot In Kennedy Murders

http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/...amp;relPageId=2

http://bioguide.congress.gov/scripts/biodi...l?index=m001092

Yea, like Cronkite declined Edward R. Morrow's offer of a job a CBS TV the first time. Print and radio are real journalists, TV is for actors and clowns.

Cronkite didn't have to acknowledge that there was a conspiracy, all he had to do was ensure that his reporters and the documentaries produced under his name were inquiries, asked the right questions, tried to get the right answers, and present that to the public instead of the propaganda they did.

Has anybody bothered to check out the Out-takes CBS News donated to the JFK Assassination Records Collection at the NARA?

CBS TV Records

q=cache:sgQA5uIUoOEJ:www.archives.gov/research/accessions/2004-quarter-1.htmxxl+Bundy+letter+to+JSC+Sept.+1963&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=6&gl=us

Accessions and Openings for 2004 First Quarter FY 2004 NARA

Donated Materials (DM-JFKJ)

4 cubic feet

Gift of 58 videotape recordings of CBS television news coverage and archival footage of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, 1963 - 68. Included are interviews with Marina Oswald and Orville Nix, as well as footage of Jim Garrison, Donald Ferrie, and others. Materials open and processed for research and study purposes only. This set of videotapes was obtained from the CBS news archive by the Assassination Records Review Board (ARRB). Accession NN3-JFKJ-01-001.

Edited by William Kelly
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I remember well Cronkite's reasoned, fact-based conclusion as to how LHO was able to do what he did alone, despite the lousy weapon, difficult shot, etc.: "He was shooting at the president of the United States."

My reaction was the same as that of the English naturalist Thomas Huxley after reading Darwin's On the Origin of Species: "How stupid that I didn't think of that!"

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I just felt the gorge rise in my stomach when I saw the footage of Cronkite - Wrongkite - discussing Oswald with a snarl: "Oswald was a xxxx!". Oh well. I don't doubt his achievements in other areas of discussion but on the matter of the most important crime of the 20th Century he wasn't a particularly great help.

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Guest Tom Scully

I read this praise Sunday, of Cronkite and David Halberstam and the comparison to the truly awful, less subtle shills who pass themselves off as serious journalists in the contemporary US.

Knowing what I know from my studies of Robert Lovett and his intertwining relationships; best friend of Trubee Davison, co-founder of the Yale Air Wing, one of the "six wise men", along with John McCloy, Dean Acehson, Averill Harriman, Bohlen, and Kennan, Lovett was the father of the strategy of massive aerial bombardment of dense residential targets, headed the committee that created and designed the CIA, was partnered with Harriman and Bush at Brown Bros., Harriman, and was hand picked to buy property on Jupiter Island, by Permelia Reed, daughter of Remington Arms president and founding director of Harriman/Bush German front shipping and banking corps., Samuel Pryor.

Lovett was one of UN Ambassador Adlai Stevenson's loudest critics in the EX-Comm meetings during the Cuban Missle crisis, and if not for the cooler heads of Stevenson and JFK that week, nuclear war would have been the inevitable result of the "counsel" of Lovett and the other hawks JFK had assembled. Both McNamara and Roswell Gilpatric came to the Defense Dept. on the urging of Lovett.

My point is that even a staunch and vocal criitic of the news media's wholesale sellout to power and ambition, as the man I've described praising Cronkite and Halberstam in my opening sentence, does not recognize just how bad it is, and how bad it had been.

We here are in a class by ourselves, because we've witnessed who has been complicit in the coverup, and noted the "coincidence" that so many of the shills, manipulators, disinformation agents, and propagandists have been so handsomely rewarded for their co-operation. At the least, incuriousness brought Gerald Ford and GHW Bush the presidency, Arlen Specter, the senate, Dan Rather and Cronkite, enormous success as news readers, McCloy was so trusted he persuaded Carter to permit McCloy's old friend, the Shah to be invited into the US for medical treatment, providing impetus for the attack and hostage taking at the US embassy in Tehran.

We are the toughest news media critics as a result of our studies, discoveries, and observations. What a pathetic state of affairs are the points of view of most of our contemporaries who actually swallow so much of what passed for serious news and commentary!

(David Halberstam apparently didn't read Gore Vidal's "property party, the one party in America with two right wings, one democrat and the other republican", memo!)

http://www.amazon.com/Best-Brightest-David...tion/0449908704

The Best and the Brightest

by David Halberstam

Chapter One

.....On the threshold of great power and great office, the young man seemed to have everything. He was handsome, rich, charming, candid. The candor was part of the charm: he could beguile a visitor by admitting that everything the visitor proposed was right, rational, proper—but he couldn’t do it, not this week, this month, this term. Now he was trying to put together a government, and the candor showed again. He was self-deprecating with the older man. He had spent the last five years, he said ruefully, running for office, and he did not know any real public officials, people to run a government, serious men. The only ones he knew, he admitted, were politicians, and if this seemed a denigration of his own kind, it was not altogether displeasing to the older man. Politicians did need men to serve, to run the government. The implication was obvious. Politicians could run Pennsylvania and Ohio, and if they could not run Chicago they could at least deliver it. But politicians run the world? What did they know about the Germans, the French, the Chinese? He needed experts for that, and now he was summoning them.

The old man was Robert A. Lovett, the symbolic expert, representative of the best of the breed, a great surviving link to a then unquestioned past, to the wartime and postwar successes of the Stimson-Marshall-Acheson years. He was the very embodiment of the Establishment, a man who had a sense of country rather than party. He was above petty divisions, so he could say of his friends, as so many of that group could, that he did not even know to which political party they belonged. He was a man of impeccable credentials, indeed he passed on other people’s credentials, deciding who was safe and sound, who was ready for advancement and who was not. He was so much a part of that atmosphere that he was immortalized even in the fiction of his class. Louis Auchincloss, who was the unofficial laureate of that particular world, would have one of his great fictional lawyers say: “I’ve got that Washington bug. Ever since I had that job with Bob Lovett . . .”

He had the confidence of both the financial community and the Congress. He had been good, very good, going up on the Hill in the old days and soothing things over with recalcitrant Midwestern senators; and he was soft on nothing, that above all—no one would accuse Robert Lovett of being soft. He was a witty and graceful man himself, a friend not just of the powerful, the giants of politics and industry, but of people like Robert Benchley and Lillian Hellman and John O’Hara. He had wit and charm. Even in those tense moments in 1950 when he had been at Defense and MacArthur was being MacArthur, Lovett had amused his colleagues at high-level meetings with great imitations of MacArthur’s vanities, MacArthur in Korea trying to comb his few strands of hair from side to side over his pate to hide his baldness, while standing in the blast of prop-plane engines at Kimpo Airfield.

They got along well, these two men who had barely known each other before. Jack Kennedy the President-elect, who in his campaign had summoned the nation’s idealism, but who was at least as skeptical as he was idealistic, curiously ill at ease with other people’s overt idealism, preferring in private the tart and darker view of the world and of mankind of a skeptic like Lovett.

In addition to his own misgivings he had constantly been warned by one of his more senior advisers that in order to deal with State effectively, he had to have a real man there, that State was filled with sissies in striped pants and worse. That senior adviser was Joseph Kennedy, Sr., and he had consistently pushed, in discussions with his son, the name of Robert Lovett, who he felt was the best of those old-time Wall Street people. For Robert Lovett understood power, where it resided, how to exercise it. He had exercised it all his life, yet he was curiously little known to the general public. The anonymity was not entirely by chance, for he was the embodiment of the public servant–financier who is so secure in his job, the value of it, his right to do it, that he does not need to seek publicity, to see his face on the cover of a magazine or on television, to feel reassured. Discretion is better, anonymity is safer: his peers know him, know his role, know that he can get things done. Publicity sometimes frightens your superiors, annoys congressional adversaries (when Lovett was at Defense, the senior members of the Armed Services committees never had to read in newspapers and magazines how brilliant Lovett was, how well he handled the Congress; rather they read how much he admired the Congress). He was the private man in the public society par excellence. He did not need to impress people with false images. He knew the rules of the game: to whom you talked, what you said, to whom you did not talk, which journalists were your kind, would, without being told, know what to print for the greater good, which questions to ask, and which questions not to ask. He lived in a world where young men made their way up the ladder by virtue not just of their own brilliance and ability but also of who their parents were, which phone calls from which old friends had preceded their appearance in an office. In a world like this he knew that those whose names were always in print, who were always on the radio and television, were there precisely because they did not have power, that those who did hold or had access to power tried to keep out of sight. He was a twentieth-century man who did not hold press conferences, who never ran for anything. The classic insider’s man.

He was born in Huntsville, Texas, in 1895, the son of Robert Scott Lovett, a general counsel for Harriman’s Union Pacific Railway, a railroad lawyer, a power man in those rough and heady days, who then became a judge, very much a part of the power structure, the Texas arm of it, and eventually a member of the Union Pacific board of directors and president of the railway. His son Bob would do all the right Eastern things, go to the right schools, join the right clubs (Hill School, Yale, Skull and Bones). He helped form the Yale unit of pilots which flew in World War I, and he commanded the first U.S. Naval Air Squadron. He married well, Adele Brown, the beautiful daughter of James Brown, a senior partner in the great banking firm of Brown Brothers.....

Edited by Tom Scully
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I remember well Cronkite's reasoned, fact-based conclusion as to how LHO was able to do what he did alone, despite the lousy weapon, difficult shot, etc.: "He was shooting at the president of the United States."

My reaction was the same as that of the English naturalist Thomas Huxley after reading Darwin's On the Origin of Species: "How stupid that I didn't think of that!"

Cronkite always towed the party line in his broadcasts, although in the 1967 CBS program he left open the question whether CE399 was planted. By the time Oliver Stone's movie was released, Cronkite was retired, and seemingly could speak more freely. Cronkite was interviewed briefly on New York's local CBS affiliate about Stone's movie, and he stated

"I have never believed that one man could have carried out the assassination alone" (quoting from memory).

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The irony here, of course, is that both Walter Cronkite and Dan Rather from CBS News got most of the facts wrong over 45 years ago as did the Warren Commission.

But can anyone here honestly stand up and state that the progress towards solving the Crime of the Century by identifying SUSPECTS is getting CLOSER to a solution than

farther away? At least the Warren Commission let Jack Ruby discuss both Edwin A. Walker and the Dallas John Birch Society and get it on the record for posterity. And

by implication, both Robert J. Morris and Maj. Gen. Charles A. Willoughby were implicated through Ruby's references to "...those in power here in Dallas."

Until anyone can prove to me that they have a better solution than the one provided by the combined efforts of Richard Condon, Willie Somersett (Joseph Milteer), John Roy Carlson,

Bill Turner (Power on the Right), Russ Bellant (Old Nazis, the New Right and the Republican Party), Jon and Scott Anderson (Inside the League), Jack Ruby himself, David Emory and

Mae Brussell then we might just have to admit that there will never be a solution to this crime.

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I wasn't aware that Cronkite ever stated publicly that Oswald couldn't have done it alone. Certainly, that contradicts his every action while working for CBS News (and also his particpation in a disinfo piece on PBS' "Nova" series).

Btw, for the true "extremist" conspiracy believers like me, it is interesting to note that Cronkite was not only a regular participant in the yearly, all male gathering of world leaders at Bohemian Grove, he was supposedly the voice of the giant owl in the disgusting occultic ritualistic plays they put on there.

The fact that this guy could be considered "the most trusted man" in America speaks volumes about just how brainwashed and controlled the public is.

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Guest Tom Scully

Cronkite, "the pot" calling Stone, "the kettle", black:

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0398443/quotes

Cronkite: [about Oliver Stone's "JFK"] Stone combines real and fictional footage in a very clever way that completely obliterates the truth. He uses my announcement of the President's death to provide an air of reality that he avoids for the rest of the picture. His preposterous theory is that top echelons of the United States government committed the Kennedy murder in order to put Lyndon Johnson in the White House. That work of fiction is dangerous, it seriously misleads a whole generation of Americans who were not alive at that time....

Wasn't it a more serious offense to deliberately mislead multiple generations of Americans who were alive at the time?

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  • 2 weeks later...

Two things about Walter Cronkite that I thought should be brought out are his associations with the World Federalists and Naushon Island.

After he retired from CBS News, Cronkite became a spokesperson for the World Federalists, who advocate a strong United Nations and a world government.

Originally founded by Cord Meyer, one of Allen Dulles' top deputies, among those who supported the World Federalists in Philadelphia were Michael Paine's mother Ruth Forbes Paine Young and Priscilla Johnson (McMillan).

In his book North by Northeast, which chronicles Cronkite's offshore sailing adventures, he recounts how he once put in to Naushon Island, which is located between Martha's Vineyard and the Massachusetts mainland.

Privately owned by the Forbes family, Ruth Paine visited her inlaws at Naushon Island in the summer of 1963, before returning home by way of Philadelphia, Ohio and New Orleans, where she picked up Marina, the daughter and the rifle and drove them to Texas while Oswald went to Mexico.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naushon_Island

Although uninvited visitors are shunned, Cronkite apparently became friends with some of the Forbes and returned on occasion.

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