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George Brown and the Assassination of JFK

John Simkin

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George Rufus Brown was born on 12th May, 1898. After studying at Rice University and the Colorado School of Mines, Brown served in the US Marines during the final stages of the Second World War.

Brown worked as a mining engineer in Butte, Montana, until he suffered a serious injury during a mining accident. He returned to Texas where he joined the construction firm founded by his brother, Herman Brown. Dan Root, Herman's brother-in-law, a prosperous cotton farmer, invested in the company. Eventually the company became known as Brown and Root.

Brown was a strong opponent of Franklin D. Roosevelt and the New Deal. Edward A. Clark arranged for a meeting to take place between the Brown and Lyndon B. Johnson. During the meeting Brown complained about the cost of New Deal projects. According to Robert Caro, Johnson said to Herman Brown: “What are you worried about? It’s not coming out of your pocket. Any money that’s spent down here on New Deal projects, the East is paying for.”

Brown and Root now grew rapidly as a result of obtaining a large number of municipal and federal government projects. This included the Marshall Ford Dam on the Colorado River. This was worth $27,000,000. In a letter written to Lyndon B. Johnson, George Brown, admitted the company was set to make a $2,000,000 profit out of the deal. In 1940 the company won a $90 million contract to build the Naval Air Station at Corpus Christi.

In 1942 the Brown brothers established the Brown Shipbuilding Company on the Houston Ship Channel. Over the next three years the company built 359 ships and employed 25,000 people. This was worth $27,000,000. This contract was eventually worth $357,000,000. Yet until they got the contract, Brown & Root had never built a single ship of any type.

After the war the brothers purchased the Big Inch and Little Inch pipelines. This company later became known as the Texas Eastern Transmission Corporation. The brothers became extremely wealthy and in 1951 established the Brown Foundation. It is estimated that over the next forty years the foundation granted more than $381 million to charitable institutions.

In the 1950s Brown & Root constructed air and naval bases in Spain, France and Guam for the United States government. The company also built roads, dams, bridges, petrochemical plants and large offshore drilling platforms. In 1961 the company won the contract for the $200 million Spacecraft Center in Houston.

On the death of his brother, Herman Brown, in 1962, George Brown became president of Brown and Root. He later sold the company to the Halliburton Company. During the Vietnam War Brown & Root/Halliburton got the lion's share of construction contracts to build American military bases in Vietnam. In fact, this was just the start of this kind of operation and are currently responsible for building and supplying military bases in Iraq and Afghanistan.

In the 1960s and 1970s Brown served as director of the Halliburton Company, Armco Steel Corporation, Louisiana Land and Exploration Company, International Telephone and Telegraphy Corporation, Trans-World Airlines, Southland Paper Company, First City Bancorporation and Highland Oil Company.

George Brown made a fortune out of the corrupt activities of Lyndon B. Johnson. He provided a lot of the funds for LBJ's successful election campaigns. Did he also fund his successful attempt to become president?

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Namebase entry for George R. Brown:


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