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Joan Mellen: A Farewell to Justice


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There are other problems with the loan story as well. According to discussion on another JFK site, Ferrie had quite a bit of cash on hand given to him by Gill for his work on the Marcello case ($7,000) so he hardly needed a loan.

Even more problematical the book says that a few days before the assassination Ferrie produced Clay Shaw to co-sign the loan. Yet according to the opening statement of Garrison at the trial, Shaw had left for the west coast (allegedly to establish an alibi) on Friday, November 15, 1963!!

http://www.jfk-online.com/state2.html

Garrison: "The evidence will further show that the defendant in accordance with the plan and in furtherance of it, did in fact head for the West Coast of the United States -- ostensibly to make a speech -- on November 15, 1963. He remained there until after PRESIDENT KENNEDY's assassination on November 22, 1963, thereby establishing an alibi for himself for the day of the shooting."

I anxiously await Owen's response! Who was telling the truth, Garrison, or Professor Mellen's witness?

Garrison is probably mistaken here (a common fault among humans). Shaw made arrangements for this trip on November 11. Shaw flew from New Orleans to Los Angeles on the 18th and took a train to San Francisco on the 20th [this is from Shaw's trial testimony, under oath. Before this, Shaw had given an account of his whereabouts during the assassination to NODA. In this account, Shaw places himself on the train when the assassination occurred. After his arrest, he told the New Orleans Times-Picayune that he was in the St. Francis Hotel during the assassination, which is probably closer to the truth]. He arrived at the San Francisco World Trade Center on November 22, mid-morning. [As an aside, J. Monroe Sullivan, the director of the San Francisco World Trade Center, has a few interesting things to say about this. He said Shaw (whom he had never met) called him to set up the luncheon (whose purported purpose was to obtain tenants for the International House). Shaw would pay all the expenses and send out the invitations. This is contrary to Shaw's account, which holds that Sullivan called him. After Shaw had arrived at the Trade Center, a bulletin came in that Kennedy had been shot. Sullivan was shocked but Shaw exhibited no reaction. Sullivan asked Shaw if he would like to go ahead with the luncheon and Shaw replied in the affirmative. Makes one wonder what sort of Kennedy admirer Shaw really was]. Mellen's account only generally says that it was the week of the assassination that the loan was co-signed. If we are to be rigid about this, let us suppose that the loan was co-signed on the 17th, a Sunday, the week of the assassination.

I don't really know how Ferrie dispensed with his funds, but this is probably why Gill (who, according to Beckham, was the one who instructed Ferrie to rent a plane) did not bother to give Ferrie the $400 for the plane, since he had already given him $7000 not long before this. He would have assumed Ferrie already had the necessary funds and Ferrie may not have been inclined to press the matter. But no one can really know, of course.

I looked at the Stephen Roy post on alt.assassination.jfk, which seems to be the major source of your information. He raises another point, that Ferrie owned a Taylorcraft L-2 which was airworthy. Why didn't he use that? I did a little a digging and discovered from one of Stephen's own posts on this forum that Ferrie's Taylorcraft was disassembled in 1963. Since the instructions for the flight were pretty short notice, I doubt Ferrie would have had time to reassemble it.

And don't think I've been avoiding you. I have other things to deal with on weekdays (i.e. school work) and sometimes I just feel like taking a break from posting.

Also, weren't you wanting to end the discussion by staking the credibility of the entire book on the NARA thing? What ever happened to that?

Edited by Owen Parsons
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I looked at the Stephen Roy post on alt.assassination.jfk, which seems to be the major source of your information. He raises another point, that Ferrie owned a Taylorcraft L-2 which was airworthy. Why didn't he use that? I did a little a digging and discovered from one of Stephen's own posts on this forum that Ferrie's Taylorcraft was disassembled in 1963. Since the instructions for the flight were pretty short notice, I doubt Ferrie would have had time to reassemble it.

I have a pretty detailed chronology of every scrap I've found about Ferrie. Many are from documents but some are from interviews. In that thread, I was noting that Ferrie's Taylorcraft L-2 was apparently disassembled in April 1963, at the time of the alleged Lambert/Diaz/Hidell flight plan. Here is what I have: He flew the Taylorcraft on September 9, 1962, apparently in connection with a funeral. Its certificate expired on December 31, 1962. The aircraft was towed to a service station "in early 1963" where its engine was removed for work, performed by a friend. On June 18, 1963 a student took his test flight in the Taylorcraft. In mid-1964, the plane was sold to the station owner. He was unsure of the date, but he said it was while Ferrie owned his own service station, between January 9 and November 30, 1964.

The record is sketchy, but it seems to indicate that the plane was flyable up to about early 63, went down for repairs and was flying again by June 63, until it was sold the next year. But upon reexamination of this record, I can't be completely certain the plane was flyable in either April 1963 or November 1963.

As noted elswhere, Ferrie also listed a Cessna 206 (probably owned by his longtime friend Lewis J. "Buster" Abadie) on an FAA application as available to him on November 11, 1963.

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Did Ferrie ever get a new certificate for his Taylorcraft? A student taking a test flight in it is one thing, but travel across state lines seems another. Also, I think Ferrie may not have wanted to involve his friend's Cessna in assassination related activities.

BTW, it is apparent to me (and has been for some time) that you have done a great deal of serious Ferrie research (versus me, who just reads books). I look forward to your tome.

Edited by Owen Parsons
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Owen wrote:

Shaw flew from New Orleans to Los Angeles on the 18th and took a train to San Francisco on the 20th [this is from Shaw's trial testimony, under oath.

Here is a link to the trial testimony:

http://www.jfk-online.com/shaw2.html

http://www.jfk-online.com/shaw3.html

Under direct examination, Shaw did not testify when he left NO.

Under cross, the ADA asked him the following question:

Q: Is there any particular reason why you left on November 15?

Here is his answer:

A: I had decided that I would take a two-week vacation in connection with this speaking engagement in Oregon.

This is of course consistent with Garrison's opening statement and my post.

Owen, I am not yet ready to accuse you of making a false reply to deflect my criticism. Let me just ask you at this time to post your source for the trial testimony of Clay Shaw that says he left NO on November 18th.

I also eagerly await your response to the apparent misquoting the testimony of Richard Helms and the interview with William Harvey (that she calls testimony) re JFK and RFK approval of assassination attempts.

Edited by Tim Gratz
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Did Ferrie ever get a new certificate for his Taylorcraft? A student taking a test flight in it is one thing, but travel across state lines seems another. Also, I think Ferrie may not have wanted to involve his friend's Cessna in assassination related activities.

BTW, it is apparent to me (and has been for some time) that you have done a great deal of serious Ferrie research (versus me, who just reads books). I look forward to your tome.

--------------------------

During my 50+ years as a pilot, I have flown "every" model of light aircraft in existence, and many of the heavy commercial cargo and passenger [type rated] aircraft which should never have existed. My flying of some of these "Junkers" (and brand new birds) took me all over the world.

I have a few thousand hours flying all types of aircraft sans "Certificates of Air Worthiness". In the gun & drug running trade, the owner just wants to "lose" his heavily insured aircraft -- which usually doesn't have said "CAW" because he is too cheap and greedy to even do "I.R.A.N." !!

Much less the "major" overhaul necessary, because it will tend to diminish his expected returns from the insurance company's pay-out. Most often, I insisted upon "minimal" maintenance and repairs before even a test-flight of their birds. There are NO "Inspections Stations (@ State borders) in the Sky".

The only occasions where a pilot or owner might have to exhibit a "C.A.W." is:

[A] To the personnel of an F.O.B. (Fixed Operating Base -- repairs etc., and airport located), and then only when an S.T.C. required modification is requested, or a 100 or 1,000 hour check is to be performed;

To a F.A.A. designee (C.F.I. - "Certified Flight Instructor") who is there to give somebody a "Check-Ride", i.e.: For logging "Dual Instruction", or for acquiring a "Rating" in an aircraft weighing over 12,500 lbs. (empty);

[C] To an F.A.A. "Inspector", or an N.T.S.B. "Investigator", and subsequent to a collision, failure (blown tire) which blocks a runway and causes a closure of that runway, or the entire airport, or a crash; and,

[D] When the owner, after being cited via an "Air Worthiness Directive" -- has to exhibit same to the F.A.A. Representative to show compliance with same !!

Every day of the year (according to the F.A.A., N.T.S.B., D.O.T., etc. websites) there are thousands of aircraft being flown without "CAWs", insurance, required "STCs", and many being flown by the hundreds of pilots with revoked, suspended, or voided "Pilot Licenses" and/or "Medical Certificates".

The F.A.A. relies on thousands of private-citizen "FAA Designees", because the Congress has refused to fund inspections over the last 60+ years !!

The few times I have ever had to show my licenses/cerificates -- was while undergoing "Dual Instruction", or when in a foreign country applying for one of their licenses, or validation of my U.S. or other foreign licenses.

For more than 25 years I flew "Black Ops" -- where an "Alias I.D." was necessary, so I acquired quite a few licenses (U.S. & foreign) under other names. Moreover, I finally just stopped making any entries in my "Log Books", as no evidence of flights (purpose, departure & destinations, routes, etc.) could be made as a permanent record.

This was the same case with parachute jumps. Since I never planned to have the "Top" rating -- A.T.P. ("Airline Transport Pilot" -- changed from A.T.R. "Airline Transport Rating", years ago.) in my own name; why the hell keep a record anyway ??!!

Chairs,

GPH

___________________

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Tim: Ah, I missed that excerpt somehow. No intention of dishonesty whatsoever. I simply assumed that since it is stated therein that Shaw went from New Orleans to Los Angeles, and knowing that he went there by plane, that he arrived on the 18th, since Shaw said he was in L.A. from the 18th to the 20th under oath. I don't know of many plane flights that take three days to arrive at their destinations. Either way, I think you are being to rigid about when the loan was signed. While I think specific details may be easy to recall, dates fade quickly. It could be the week of, or maybe the week before. I know this from my own experience.

Also, I'm not going to bother to check up on the William Harvey issue, because I would not believe him even if he did say that. I'll leave that one to Mellen to handle.

Edited by Owen Parsons
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Owen, how could you post that Shaw said in court under oath that he left NO on November 18th when the transcript clearly states Nobember 15th and now state you missed the transcript?

Please don't state anything as a statement of fact unless you have verified it or at least can cite a reference to a credible source that has.

I hope you may now begin to see many of the factual inaccuracies in the book.

Let's not forget as Tim Carroll pointed out that, apparently with no basis whatsoever, Professor Mellen says that LHO was at the trial of Gary Powers.

The book seems replete with factual errors, IMO.

*******************************

Owen also wrote:

Also, I'm not going to bother to check up on the William Harvey issue, because I would not believe him even if he did say that. I'll leave that one to Mellen to handle.

Owen, you miss the entire point.

The issue is not Harvey's credibility--it's Mellen's.

Mellen says that Harvey testified under oath to the Church Committee to a certain fact.

The facts are:

1) Harvey never testified to the Church Committee. He only gave an interview to staff counsel.

2) Even more important, in the interview he never made the statement Mellen attributes to him.

It's not a question whether Harvey should be believed on anything. It's a question whether Mellen should be believed on anything.

Edited by Tim Gratz
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I didn't say I missed the transcript, I just missed that particular part. There was a certain inelegance to how I worded my reply, but you are really just nitpicking here, at the expense of the rest of my posts. Its a deduction I made from the transcripts. No need to sound so indignant.

I know its an issue of Mellen's credibility, but I don't feel its my job to deal with every problem you have with the book. Its really not something I have an urge to defend. Going through the entirety of Harvey's interview will probably take much more time than I am willing to devote to it.

Edited by Owen Parsons
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Owen, it is not nit-picking.

I posted the issue of when Shaw left NO (per a post on another forum but I independently checked what Garrison said in his opening statement) to counter the allegation that he co-signed a loan the week of the assassination.

You then posted that Shaw testified that he had left NO on November 18th, which might erase the timing problem.

I checked it and his testimony was he left on November 15th.

You now state you were only drawing an inference. There are two MAJOR problems with that.

First, you cannot, of course, draw an inference which is contrary to his express testimony.

Second, if it was only an inference from his testimony, you should have so stated. But you clearly stated that he testified to his actual date of departure. This was very misleading on your part.

Finally, you say some things are best left to Professor Mellen. Here I agree with you completely. I find it interesting that she has not yet posted to respond to any of the numerous apparent factual inaccuracies in her book. I find her absence of a response of some interest.

Edited by Tim Gratz
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Sorry I didn't word my reply properly. I said it is "from" his trial testimony, not that he said it. Yes, clumsy, but no misleading was intended. I should have said "derived" or something like that. There is still a disrepancy between when he supposedly left and when he arrived. Shaw actually says he was in L.A. from the 18th to the 20th. The 15th date is only mentioned in a question put to him. There really isn't any way he could have left New Orleans via plane to Los Angeles and arrived three days later. And like I said, the exact date isn't really all that important anyway.

I also note that you haven't taken any interest in the material I posted about Shaw's shifting alibi or J. Monroe Sullivan's account of the luncheon.

I assume the reason Mellen hasn't replied yet is because she is still teaching classes and doing a book tour. There is really nothing of interest about it.

Edited by Owen Parsons
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Owen wrote:

I know its an issue of Mellen's credibility, but I don't feel its my job to deal with every problem you have with the book. Its really not something I have an urge to defend. Going through the entirety of Harvey's interview will probably take much more time than I am willing to devote to it.

Owen, the entire interview transcript is only about twelve pages. With your intelligence you ought to be able to read it in less than fifteen minutes. Just tell me (us) if there is anything in it that comes even close to the statement Professor Mellen attributes to William Harvey's "testimony".

http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/...bsPageId=177084

Finally, the apparent numerous factual errors in the book are not problems I have with the book. They are problems the book has. How more apparent can that be?

Edited by Tim Gratz
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Hey Tim, I did a bit of checking, and it looks like you screwed up. Mellen typically cites Harvey as "Testimony of William Harvey, June 25, 1975, afternoon session."

Your interview transcript is dated April 10th, 1975. The record numbers don't match either. This is probably the reason you aren't finding what you're looking for. I don't even think you're talking about the same thing. And you accuse me of being "misleading!"

Edited by Owen Parsons
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More to the point, you have been waving this Belin transcript around as if it was the actual source she cites when it would become obvious very quickly to any person who bothered to read the footnotes that it isn't. Can you please explain yourself? And you call me "misleading?" Well, you have been misleading, at the very least.

Edited by Owen Parsons
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Owen, I searched the database at the Mary Farrell Foundation, which I believe to be fairly comprehensive, and that is the only thing I found on William K. Harvey.

Can you supply me with a source for his actual testimony before the Church Committee if he did so testify? I have been looking to no avail, so far.

To the point: if Harvey testified as Mellen claims he did, why would the Church Committee have found it so difficult to determine if there was WH approval for plots to kill Castro? That does not make any sense (which is what started my inquiry in the first place).

I would also point out that this "bombshell testimony" by Harvey is something that apparently every assassination researcher has missed as well as the Church Committee itself.

Edited by Tim Gratz
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