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A fresh analysis of the Dean Andrews phone call and the name "Clay Bertrand"


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More on was Clay Bertrand Clay Shaw

I received this email from one of the brightest current JFK assassination researchers producing original research, Tom Gram.

"For completeness sake, I’ve been trying to get someone to post the following FBI memo in your Ed forum thread, which states that Aaron Kohn and confidential informant NO-1309-C (Joseph Oster) told the FBI that Shaw is Clay Bertrand a week before Shaw was arrested. I don’t know if you’ll want to post it yourself but hell I figured I’d ask. Oster had worked for Bannister, then informed on Garrison’s investigation to the FBI, and Kohn of course was Garrison’s sworn enemy. I just think that any argument that Shaw is not Bertrand; and any argument that uses Kohn as source needs to contend with this memo. I enjoyed reading your theory, but I think that the evidence suggesting Shaw is Bertrand is stronger than the evidence that he isn’t. 
 
"https://servimg.com/view/19524087/2478 (unredacted and highlighted version posted by Bart Kamp at ROKC) 

"https://www.archives.gov/files/research/jfk/releases/2018/docid-32321972.pdf (2018 release identifying the numbered informant as Oster)"
 
My comment
 
The FBI document above shows FBI received information from two sources, confidential information Oster of Banister's office (the ID of the confidential
informant from Gram's other doc above) and Aaron Kohn, reported to FBI on the same day, Feb 24, 1967, that they have information that Clay Shaw is
identical with an individual named Clay Bertrand allegedly in contact with Dean Andrews.
 
Apparently Oster and Kohn believed the information they reported was true. That does not make it true. The issue is where did they get this information,
and is it true?
 
Since both come in on the same day, either one got it from the other, or both got it at the same time from some third party.
 
After looking into this I think this reflects information stemming from the Garrison district attorney's office saying that Dean Andrews himself had told them that Clay Bertrand was Clay Shaw, and that that Garrison office originated report was wrong. 
 
The argument for this is I noticed the timeline. All up to then Dean Andrews had consistently denied Clay Shaw was Clay Bertrand. He denied it to
the Warren Commission. He denied it to the New Orleans Grand Jury. He denied it in public to the press. His reason for that denial, he said, was because he was horrified that an innocent man, Clay Shaw, was getting caught up in a false charge. Andrews denied it even though Garrison told him he would be charged and prosecuted for perjury if he did not say Clay Shaw was Bertrand, a "cooperate or else" threat. Still Andrews refused.
 
And yet, just days prior to this FBI report of Oster and Kohn reporting the unsourced, unknown-origin information that Shaw was Bertrand, there are two--and only two that I am aware of--known reports of claims, both apparently originating from the Garrison district attorney's office--claiming that Dean Andrews himself had told them, the Garrison office, that Bertrand was Clay Shaw, which Dean Andrews from all other information both before and after, denied.
 
The timeline of these two known claims deriving from the Garrison office says the unknown source of Oster and Kohn was likely that same claim derived from the Garrison office. The fact that Oster and Kohn may have believed the information that they were passing along is correct is irrelevant. The issue is whether it was correct. 
 
The first and less important of the two claims that Dean Andrews said that is a statement in an unpublished Harold Weisberg book manuscript in which he says Dean Andrews told him, Weisberg, that Clay Shaw was Bertrand. While that is true, Weisberg did write that, the lowdown there is brought out in this piece by Litwin, "Did Dean Andrews admit that Clay Shaw was Clay Bertrand", https://www.onthetrailofdelusion.com/post/did-dean-andrews-admit-that-clay-shaw-was-clay-bertrand. There Litwin shows a letter from Weisberg replying to a letter from Joan Mellen asking Weisberg about that. (Litwin's posts are valuable in showing images of documents, not just quotes from them.) Weisberg answered, June 20, 2001:
 
"Andrews told me that Shaw was Bertrand without putting it that way. We were in his office discussing some of the evidence, what I now do not recall, when Andrews said, approximately these words, 'If the Green Giant gets past that, he is home clear.'"
 
That is the explanation from Weisberg himself for his own claim that Dean Andrews said that. He said Dean Andrews did not say so directly in so many words. He said Andrews said something else which Weisberg interpreted to mean that. Litwin comments: "I think that Weisberg read just a little too much into Andrews' words". Weisburg was working with Garrison in New Orleans at the time.
 
Is that a sound basis upon which to put Clay Shaw in prison, or does it help establish a Shaw/Bertrand identity as a fact in history? No
 
And underlying my reaction to this is that it does not make sense that Dean Andrews would say that. He denied it before and after, at cost to himself, and was never confirmed to have said that personally. Garrison did not have Weisberg come in as a witness testifying in court at Dean Andrews' perjury trial, etc. 
 
OK, that's one down. Now for the more important and what I think is the pivotal second one. On Feb 18, 1967--just six days before Oster and Kohn passed on their information to the FBI--Sciambra and Ivon from Garrison's DA office interviewed David Ferrie. This is from Scambria's memo to Garrison:
 
"I then asked him [Ferrie] if he would like to tell me some more about his trip to Hammond and he smiled and said 'Go to hell'. I then asked if he stayed with Clay Shaw. He said, 'Who's Clay Shaw?' I said, 'All right, if that doesn't ring a bell, how about Clay Bertrand?' He said, 'Who's Clay Bertrand?' I said, 'Clay Bertrand and Clay Shaw are the same person.' He asked 'Who said that?' I said, 'Dean Andrews told us.' He said, 'Dean Andrews might tell you guys anything. You know how Dean Andrews is.' Ferrie then started to go into another lecture and we told him we had to go..." (https://www.onthetrailofdelusion.com/post/david-ferrie-talks-to-garrison-s-assistant-district-attorneys)
 
I think Sciambra was bluffing in telling Ferrie "Dean Andrews told us", hoping to get a confirmation from Ferrie. That is an old tactic in police interrogation, telling a suspect "we already know xyz" and the suspect is fooled into thinking it is already known so sees no point in denying and confirms it, which now is the testimony wanted in the first place, since in fact police had not known until confirmed by the suspect. 
 
Apart from that making perfect sense of the exchange and it not making sense that Dean Andrews actually had said that, there is an even more direct consideration to me: at the Clay Shaw perjury trial, why was not Sciambra up there on the witness stand testifying, "I heard Dean Andrews tell us that". Or anybody else in the DA's office? The reason: it never happened. Sciambra was making it up in this exchange with Ferrie, in an attempt to get some reaction from Ferrie that would give actual information.
 
I think some form of that then got to Oster or Kohn. (Ferrie could have told someone who told someone what Sciambra said and it got back to Banister's or Kohn's office...?) Whether by accident or design, someone spread that DA-office-originated report of Dean Andrews but I do not believe that report was true. 
 
Bottom line: neither Oster nor Kohn spoke from personal knowledge that Clay Shaw was Bertrand. They claimed only they had "received information" that that was the case. The source and veracity of that information is not stated. It cannot be given weight unless source and veracity is known. 
 
I believe the source was the DA's office, very possibly that specific Sciambra questioning of Ferrie. And the veracity: zero. Which I think at least in the case of the Sciambra claim in the Ferrie interview, Sciambra and Garrison themselves knew was zero veracity. Because that was just a way to try to trick Ferrie into giving an inadvertent confirmation. 
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More on Garrison's mob-did-it theory of the JFK assassination

This continues from an earlier comment of mine above, in which I told of learning from another researcher that Garrison held a mob-did-it view of the JFK assassination. 

For clarification, here was Garrison's mob-did-it theory as reported by the researcher:

"The FBI also picked up information that Garrison was examining the Mafia angle when, in June of 1967, a Bureau  source said that 'Garrison believed that organized crime, speciically, "La Cosa Nostra", is responsible along with other anti-Castroites for the assassination.' In fact, in no less than Harper's Weekly of September 6, 1976, Garrison expounded on this concept in an interview with Dick Russell. He started off by saying, 'It's really not all that complicated. Elements of the CIA utilizing anti-Castro adventurers and elements of the Lan[sk]y Mob. It all revolved around Cuba, getting Cuba back.' As Russell commented, very few people back in 1967 had knowledge of the long association between the CIA and the Mafia. Garrison discovered this by his own digging." (DiEugenio, Destiny Betrayed [2012 edn], 212)

Since Lansky and Trafficante were closely intertwined in their organized crime activities in Florida and pre-Castro Cuba, this lessens the distance between Garrison's theory and that of Blakey who also had Marcello and Trafficante. Both Garrison and Blakey therefore had organized crime in Florida and anti-Castro Cubans in their respective views of the JFK assassination (the anti-Castro Cubans involved were associates of Trafficante according to Blakey and Escalante). And did Blakey rule out a CIA hand in mob JFK assassination activity altogether? Therefore although there is a difference in emphasis in that Garrison emphasized a stronger role of the CIA as "the lead locomotive driving the train" more than did Blakey who focused on the Mob, how much of that is a difference in emphasis in the end?

But there was a big, BIG, B-I-G difference between Garrison and the 1970s mob-did-it theories of HSCA/Blakey and the mob-did-it books. This BIG difference was not over a role of the mob in the JFK assassination--both agreed on that--nor necessarily in all cases a possible role of the CIA (apart from difference in emphasis). 

The difference is that Garrison in New Orleans saw NONE of that mob that did the JFK assassination as having occurred in New Orleans, whereas Blakey and most other mob-did-it theories, and Robert Kennedy who thought Marcello killed his brother, saw New Orleans as the MAIN mob center involved in the mob's role in the assassination, with focus of attention on mob boss Carlos Marcello of New Orleans. On the point of which mob and where it operated in its involvement in the JFK assassination, the difference between Garrison and Blakey was night and day.

For Garrison did not believe there was any organized crime in New Orleans. Just didn't exist so far as he could see. At least that is what he said. Therefore by definition the mob elements that he did see as involved in the JFK assassination could not, by definition, have been in New Orleans, since New Orleans had no organized crime! All mob role in the JFK assassination that happened, in Garrison's view, happened in Florida, or anywhere else but not New Orleans, which was clean of organized crime. So it is not as if Garrison failed to acknowledge that organized crime existed. It is not that Garrison denied there was a Mob in America. It is not that Garrison denied some of that Mob was involved in the JFK assassination. But Garrison, living next door to a home-builder who had built Garrison's home and who was a long-term business partner of Carlos Marcello, denied that organized crime was present in New Orleans.

What comes to mind is Capt. Louis Renault in the movie Casablanca saying he was shocked, just shocked, at learning gambling was going on. Here is from the HSCA report on an interview with Garrison in Nov 1978. At this time Garrison had modified his views on Marcello to going all the way to conceding that he had heard some vague rumors that Marcello might have had a few shady things going on in the background long ago, not sure when, but long ago: 

"When asked if he believed Marcello was a man capable of having President Kennedy murdered, Garrison did not directly answer the question. Garrison stated that he has 'certainly heard' that Marcello may have once been involved in some kind of criminal activity years ago. He stated that he has some reason to believe that some of Marcello's money was obtained through criminal acts many years ago. Garrison further stated that he has heard of allegations linking Marcello to organized crime and the Mafia, but does not know if they are true. He stated that he has heard over the years that Marcello may be a man of significant wealth, and may in fact be one of Louisiana's wealthier citizens. He stated that Marcello is not active in real estate and is a businessman.

"When asked again if he believes that Marcello had the motive and means to assassinate President Kennedy, Garrison again did not respond to the question, and began talking about another subject at length." (https://www.jfk-assassination.net/jim-hsca.htm

Bear in mind Garrison was the public servant paid and mandated to investigate and prosecute crime. But he was unable to discover what every other law enforcement official and agency involved in organized crime prosecutions, from Robert Kennedy on down, had known for years: that Marcello was the head of organized crime in the region, headquartered in New Orleans. Robert Kennedy went to war with Hoffa and the mob and tried to have Marcello permanently deported from the US in a bitter struggle. There are recurring reports that Marcello gave a huge bundle of money to what may have been the most mobbed-up president in US history, Nixon, in the runup of the 1960 presidential campaign. Marcello's region included the scene of the crime of the JFK assassination, Dallas. And if it was not clear then it is certainly clear now, if you don't buy the Jack Ruby moment-of-passion killing of Oswald, then in Ruby's killing of Oswald that is looking at Marcello killing Oswald. It is that plain.

So it was not that Garrison did not have a mob-did-it theory (along with other actors such as the CIA on top). It was not that Garrison denied the mob existed in America. He just saw no sign of any mob in New Orleans worth investigating for crime at all, and certainly not for the specific crime of the assassination of JFK as he sought earnestly to leave no stone unturned in investigating leads that could solve that assassination.

Instead of investigating Marcello, Garrison went after Clay Shaw. Instead of going after the bad actor in New Orleans who may have done it for real, Garrison went after someone who had nothing to do with the JFK assassination, forever bringing discredit upon JFK assassination conspiracy-theory researchers who continue to embrace that miscarriage of justice and will not acknowledge it was wrong, horribly wrong. David Lifton stated it well:

"I think its ugly when the power of the state is arrayed against an innocent man--and the witchhunt that took place in New Orleans back in 1967-69 will always remain exactly that: an ugly incident in the annals of jurisprudence." (https://www.jfk-assassination.net/garrison.htm)

Edited by Greg Doudna
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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, James DiEugenio said:

This is why Kohn made up that baloney about Clem Sehrt.   (Look at his footnotes in the HSCA volumes, they are all empty.)

Because he knew Shaw was Bertrand.

https://servimg.com/view/19524087/2478

I think by "baloney about Clem Sehrt", you are probably meaning Kohn telling HSCA that an associate of Clem Seht said Seht had been contacted by someone the weekend of the assassination about representing Oswald. My reason for thinking that is what you mean, is because it seems to repeat what you wrote earlier on your site in Feb 2021:

"Kohn created the whole Clem Sehrt mythology: that a lawyer Marguerite Oswald knew was known as Bertrand. (https://www.kennedysandking.com/john-f-kennedy-reviews/fred-litwin-on-the-trail-of-delusion-part-two)

But that is so mixed up and wrong. It just isn't true. Kohn never connected Clem Sehrt's phone call to Marguerite, or to Bertrand, or to Dean Andrews. Kohn never connected that Sehrt phone call to anything at all. Nor did anyone else. There was no connection that you are talking about made by anyone until conspiracy-theorist Peter Whitmey's article in Fourth Decade in 1994. So now you have Kohn creating a fabrication as a plot and you have a motive--all so that fifteen years later conspiracy-theorist Whitmey writing in an obscure conspiracy-theorist journal of a circulation all the way maybe up into the hundreds of other conspiracy-theorists would make that connection, thereby diverting people's attention away from the truth that Clay Shaw was Bertrand.

Due to the marginal, low-circulation venue in which it was published, nobody paid much attention to Peter Whitmey's making the connection to the Dean Andrews phone call except for the niche of conspiracy theorists who subscribed. Maybe a few CT's commented, discussed, probably so, I don't know, until now a still further 28 years later on the present topic discussion I develop that idea earlier suggested by Whitmey, as perhaps the second major argument development of the idea since Kohn told HSCA. That is some plot you impute to Kohn as motivation for your off-the-wall assertion that Kohn fabricated the whole thing, just so that Whitmey and I could run with it and discredit that aspect of the Clay Shaw prosecution (!).

It was Peter Whitmey 15 years later, developed further by me in the present topic thread 43 years later, who propose the connection to the Dean Andrews phone call or Bertrand. It is not Kohn who did that! Don't you understand? 

I think your smearing of Kohn as dishonest and a fabricator of his Clem Sehrt information given to HSCA, without any evidence whatsoever--just asserted ex cathedra on your sayso--is sad. There is too much smearing of innocent people. You can be better than this.

Edited by Greg Doudna
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Now I have to look at this stuff. Incredible.

If you look at the Kohn footnotes in the HSCA volumes, you will see that they are empty.

What do I mean by that:  that they say files of the MCC.

Did you not even look at this stuff before you wrote it?

Even though Kohn knew Shaw was Bertrand, he was so devoted to the Mob did it angle that he had to disguise that with this Clem Sehrt diversion. Everyone knew Shaw was Bertrand, see what happened with Ed Tatro. Therefore Blakey and Billings relied on Kohn for this stuff.

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by James DiEugenio
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I looked at  it.

Does Greg know how to read footnotes?  In Whitmey's article it clearly says HSCA Volume 9, p. 101.  

That reference goes directly to Aaron Kohn. Which means its just about worthless.

 

 

Edited by James DiEugenio
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The paragraph of HSCA vol 9, p. 101 dealing with Clem Sehrt having been contacted (does not actually say by telephone) soon after the assassination asking him to go to Dallas to represent Oswald, is attributed to the New Orleans Crime Commission. There are four footnotes, 128-131, all of which go to "Interview of Aaron M. Kohn, Dec. 2, 1978, House Select Committee on Assassinations."

I have no idea why you are going nasty or why you are saying that witness testimony citation is worthless. Books footnote statements from witnesses to dates of interviews all the time. What does that have to do with anything? Why are you talking about footnotes anyway? You got your reading of the content screwed up is what happened. Instead of acknowledging, thanking me for bringing it to your attention, maybe making a minor correction in future publications of the point ... you go nasty toward me.

So to close this out, as I understand it you are saying disregard the HSCA paragraph on p. 101 of vol IX recounting information which HSCA says was told to it in an interview with Aaron Kohn.

Fair enough. You are free to disregard it, though I have no idea what your reasoning is on that. Meanwhile, I will proceed with any who wish to discuss the research I have posted in which I do make use of HSCA.

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Can I address the overall issue for a moment?  I think its needed with what GD is doing.  First, we get the old Walter Sheridan myth:  Garrison was really covering up for the Mafia.  Bill Davy dealt with his in his fine book on Garrison, Let Justice Be Done. Its utterly false.  On more than one ground.

Now this.  Somehow Shaw was not Bertrand and Aaron Kohn clued us in as to what really happened.

As I have said, you cannot deal with New Orleans unless you have been there, more than once. You have to do that to understand all the ins and outs of that city.  They are not easy to comprehend.

Aaron Kohn was paid by a private watchdog group, the MCC.  The MCC was in turn funded by the power elite in New Orleans. Kohn was a former FBI agent. He was also obsessed with the Mafia, and he hated Italians. Sal Panzeca told me that when he had a dinner for an Italian -American group, Kohn was in the parking lot writing down all the license plate numbers.

Kohn liked Garrison at first.  But once the word got out that JG was investigating the JFK case, this changed--with a vengeance.  He now began to create all kinds of ways to go after the DA, one was to say he was somehow soft on the Mafia.  This was an incessant charge made by Kohn.  So the grand jury called him in and said, please show us the evidence of undue Mob influence in New Orleans.  It was not forthcoming. It was gas.

Now when Sheridan moved into town, he and Kohn was a match made in Hades.  Kohn furnished his offices as venue for the operations Sheridan pulled. For instance, when Sheridan intimidated a witness, Fred Leemans, into turning on JG, that TV interview was shot in Kohn's HQ. The Life magazine smear of JG and the Mob, was done with aid from his "files", which he could not produce for the grand jury. Kohn stayed allied with Shaw's lawyers way past Sheridan, up until the trial.  The only guy who I think was more allied with the Wegmanns for a longer time was Aynesworth.

Now since Blakey helped pen the Life smear with Billings, when those two took over the HSCA, they knew where to go. Sprague and Tanenbaum were focused on the Cuban exiles and CIA.  Blakey and Billings were not going that route, too close to Garrison.  So they brought back Sheridan and Kohn from the late sixties.  And thus they created this whole Mob did it pretext, when in fact, they knew their own evidence would not support it. They just did not reveal that at the time. We had to wait 30 years for it.

Now that those files are open, we can make a better measurement of what happened to the HSCA under the second regime.  Its not very attractive to most knowledgeable people: Guinn, Canning, Cecil Kirk, Larry Sturdivan, the deception about the Parkland doctors vs the Bethesda doctors, which was a piece of rubbish, which no one would claim.  The HSCA volumes look worse and worse as time goes on. The stuff that was classified by them is more interesting and honest.

But you will not find Kohn's stuff there.  Maybe because it did not exist? As Garrison's grand jury found out.

Edited by James DiEugenio
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4 hours ago, James DiEugenio said:

Can I address the overall issue for a moment?  I think its needed with what GD is doing.  First, we get the old Walter Sheridan myth:  Garrison was really covering up for the Mafia.  Bill Davy dealt with his in his fine book on Garrison, Let Justice Be Done. Its utterly false.  On more than one ground.

Now this.  Somehow Shaw was not Bertrand and Aaron Kohn clued us in as to what really happened.

As I have said, you cannot deal with New Orleans unless you have been there, more than once. You have to do that to understand all the ins and outs of that city.  They are not easy to comprehend.

Aaron Kohn was paid by a private watchdog group, the MCC.  The MCC was in turn funded by the power elite in New Orleans. Kohn was a former FBI agent. He was also obsessed with the Mafia, and he hated Italians. Sal Panzeca told me that when he had a dinner for an Italian -American group, Kohn was in the parking lot writing down all the license plate numbers.

Kohn liked Garrison at first.  But once the word got out that JG was investigating the JFK case, this changed--with a vengeance.  He now began to create all kinds of ways to go after the DA, one was to say he was somehow soft on the Mafia.  This was an incessant charge made by Kohn.  So the grand jury called him in and said, please show us the evidence of undue Mob influence in New Orleans.  It was not forthcoming. It was gas.

Now when Sheridan moved into town, he and Kohn was a match made in Hades.  Kohn furnished his offices as venue for the operations Sheridan pulled. For instance, when Sheridan intimidated a witness, Fred Leemans, into turning on JG, that TV interview was shot in Kohn's HQ. The Life magazine smear of JG and the Mob, was done with aid from his "files", which he could not produce for the grand jury. Kohn stayed allied with Shaw's lawyers way past Sheridan, up until the trial.  The only guy who I think was more allied with the Wegmanns for a longer time was Aynesworth.

Now since Blakey helped pen the Life smear with Billings, when those two took over the HSCA, they knew where to go. Sprague and Tanenbaum were focused on the Cuban exiles and CIA.  Blakey and Billings were not going that route, too close to Garrison.  So they brought back Sheridan and Kohn from the late sixties.  And thus they created this whole Mob did it pretext, when in fact, they knew their own evidence would not support it. They just did not reveal that at the time. We had to wait 30 years for it.

Now that those files are open, we can make a better measurement of what happened to the HSCA under the second regime.  Its not very attractive to most knowledgeable people: Guinn, Canning, Cecil Kirk, Larry Sturdivan, the deception about the Parkland doctors vs the Bethesda doctors, which was a piece of rubbish, which no one would claim.  The HSCA volumes look worse and worse as time goes on. The stuff that was classified by them is more interesting and honest.

But you will not find Kohn's stuff there.  Maybe because it did not exist? As Garrison's grand jury found out.

Jim Di makes the most sense here imo.  As always, better researched than anyone else in the important areas debated.

Yes, when Sprague and Tanenbaum left ... so did the integrity of that committee.

The reasons they gave for doing so say it all.

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Joe

I am glad we put both of them in the long version of the film.  Sprague about: Why did the CIA not debrief Oswald on his return from Russia? And Tanenbaum saying, you could not convict Oswald in any court in America with this inadmissible evidence.

From what I understand this is going to take up a chapter in his upcoming book.

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Jim, you are right.  I grow so tired of people interjecting their “opinions” and then preventing any discussion based on contrary opinions.  Here, for example, GD shares what he knows is his speculation about the facts and thus, his interpretation of the facts.   Yet, then ignores that same rule and attacks others for doing anything similar.  
Having read the above diatribe, it confirms that reading books does not substitute for first hand knowledge based on interviews and actually going to NO and/or Dallas.  As you know, I wrote about Garrison in law school.  It really amazes me how many people get the legal side of the prosecutions and trials wrong.   Oh well.  
 

Edited by Cory Santos
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Thanks Cory.  

I always liked Peter, but he was not the kind of guy who would fly down to New Orleans and spend a week there and track down witnesses or people in the know. 

I did that four times.  The first time alone, the other times with other researchers e.g. Peter Vea, Bill Davy, Bob Spiegelman.

I got to meet Lyon Garrison  on my last trip.  He ended up giving me his father's extant files. 

To give you another example, Joan Mellen spent three weeks in the Clinton-Jackson area.  She took out a room in St. Francisville, and drove up every day.

That is how I learned that our so called hallowed critical community was really not so hallowed.  And that some of them were really no different from the MSM on this subject.  What made it worse is that they were all too willing to lower the axe without doing any real research of their own.

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Posted (edited)
23 hours ago, Cory Santos said:

Jim, you are right.  I grow so tired of people interjecting their “opinions” and then preventing any discussion based on contrary opinions.  Here, for example, GD shares what he knows is his speculation about the facts and thus, his interpretation of the facts.   Yet, then ignores that same rule and attacks others for doing anything similar.  
Having read the above diatribe, it confirms that reading books does not substitute for first hand knowledge based on interviews and actually going to NO and/or Dallas.  As you know, I wrote about Garrison in law school.  It really amazes me how many people get the legal side of the prosecutions and trials wrong.   Oh well.  

That's not accurate Cory, I'm not trying to stop expression of opposing views, certainly don't mean to. Jim D. said Metropolitan Crime Commission head Aaron Kohn fabricated a Clem Sehrt link to Bertrand of the Dean Andrews phone call. I was accused of not understanding that. Jim D. said the reason Kohn fabricated the Bertrand connection was to discredit Garrison. I said Kohn did not say that. Jim D. insisted he did. That I did not know how to read footnotes, if I could read footnotes I would know Kohn's Bertrand reference was fabricated. Here is the complete paragraph of HSCA vol. 9, p. 101 (footnoted to an HSCA interview of Kohn):

"On December 7, 1978, the New Orleans Crime Commission informed the committee of some information it had recently learned from a former associate from a former associate of Sehrt's, a source it regarded as highly reliable. This associate had stated that Sehrt told him prior to his death that some party had contacted him soon after the assassination to request that he go to Dallas to represent the accused assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald. Sehrt did not tell his associate who requested this legal representation, nor did Sehrt agree to represent Oswald. Sehrt's associate could not recall any further information."

As you can see, there is no Bertrand connection there. The Bertrand connection was first proposed in Peter Whitmey's good article 15 years later. Jim D. simply made a mistake, no big deal, we all make mistakes. Some people acknowledge this kind of error. I am quite certain Jim D. realizes it was a mistake now, though it is unlikely he will say so. Most likely Jim D. will move on to other topics or things, may or may not attack me now or later on some other failing of mine over here or over there, whatever. But what he will not do is repeat the claim that Kohn in the above paragraph fabricated a connection to Bertrand, the idea that Whitmey published 15 years later. In this I do not mean to clobber Jim D. or anyone else for making this nature of mistake. I make this kind of mistake too, nearly everyone has at one time or another. It is helpful if it is acknowledged so it gets taken off the plate, but the reality is that is not what all people do. I have seen scholars react differently when mistakes are pointed out. Some acknowledge and correct. That is ideal. But especially with major scholars with reputations, I have seen the phenomenon of never apologize. They won't retract or correct, but they also won't bring up the point again. It just dies a slow death, with a long afterlife because the major-name scholar has it in print and it is not retracted and the mistaken claim is attached to the major name's reputation. 

In the present case, Jim D. has on record an unretracted smear of Kohn: a claim that Kohn fabricated something Kohn never said. It is unlikely there will be acknowledgement of the error or explicit retraction of the smear founded upon that error. But you can know he realizes it was an error, by the fact you will not see him repeat again the claim that Kohn fabricated a Bertrand connection. 

As I brought out in my opening of this topic, the Garrison investigation uncovered independent information that Marguerite Oswald said she called Clem Sehrt the weekend of the assassination seeking legal counsel for her son. So there is no point to saying Kohn fabricated a contact to Sehrt which Marguerite herself said happened and came from her. 

Edited by Greg Doudna
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Posted (edited)

Update to Tom Gram:

On the question of the sources for the Oster and Kohn reports to the FBI of Feb 24, 1967 that they had received information that Dean Andrews' Clay Bertrand was Clay Shaw, this from Litwin has FBI interview documents which answer that question: https://www.onthetrailofdelusion.com/post/did-the-fbi-know-that-shaw-was-bertrand. Unidentified sources in the media. In other words insubstantial, could be coming out of the district attorney's office.

Edited by Greg Doudna
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Greg - All of this is an attempt to convince that Garrison was protecting Marcello, or at least was on the wrong Trail of the Assassins. No matter how cleverly you put together your theories about Clem Sehrt, or Marcello, in support of your bigger theory that the mob did it, it will not convince me. I won’t speak for anyone else. Next to Oliver Stone, an American hero with so much integrity, the Mafia did it theorists like Blakey (who somewhat recanted when he found out too late who the still heavily redacted Joannides was), can’t hold a candle. The very course of this nation was altered that day, a point that Stone continually makes. No way it was just fortuitous that JFK was out of the way, or RFK and MLK for that matter. Your theory cannot account for even the Chicago plot a few weeks prior. Am I to believe that millions died in the ensuing SE Asian wars because the MIC capitalized on the actions of thugs? 
A few myths - the FBI and WC knew it was the mob but couldn’t tell the truth (still) because the CIA collaborations with Mafia figures was a state secret. It sounds good, but come on! Really? A beloved president was killed, and CIA chose to cover its ass even though it wasn’t guilty of the crime, but had formed a useful alliance with Mafiosi in the anti-Castro movement? Even today? 
Myth - LBJ and WC saved the world from nuclear annihilation by claiming a lone nut did it, rather than a conspiracy related to Cuba and Castro. That didn’t stop us from bombing the heck out of so-called Soviet proxies later. 
The truth has long been obvious - JFK was trying to bring peace to the world by focusing on finding common ground with the Soviet Union and allowing the third world to be unaligned rather than militarized pawns. Those of us that mourn his death, and the death of his brother and MLK (who had finally turned against the Vietnam war and had proposed to occupy DC in furtherance of ending that war) mourn the loss of the world these men envisioned. The Mafia is long gone, and we still live in permanent war. 

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