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Jim Garrison and Oliver Stone


Lynne Foster
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Initially, when the news of Garrison's investigation hit the media, I was intrigued. When Ferrie's name came out, I thought Garrison might be onto something. When I heard rumors that Garrison was getting stonewalled and having problems with the federal government in continuing his investigation, I was pretty damn sure he was onto something.

But by the time he brought Clay Shaw to trial, the show didn't match the hype. The evidence didn't lead where Garrison had initially implied that it would. Bottom line was, Garrison hadn't made the case that he'd sold the American people. For those of us who had, thru the media, bought our tickets, we thought we were due a refund.

I don't mean to imply that there was no value whatsoever to the Garrison investigation. But for him to go to trial with what appeared to be such a flimsy case, after the way Garrison had hyped it in the media, it was an immense letdown for those of us who'd had faith that, just maybe, the JFK assassination case would be broken wide open and the guilty brought to justice.

For those of you with business experience who are familiar with the customer satisfaction motto of "under-promise and over-deliver," Garrison did the exact opposite. And that is what was [is] so disappointing about the Garrison investigation. Or, in "redneck" terminology, "he let his alligator mouth overload his hummingbird ass."

I think it's a bit of a tough call on Garrison. I don't want to sound like a rabid defender of his and Lynne Foster and Tom Purvis obviously don't like him.

However, his trial was hamstrung by bureaucratic scrutiny and interference from the start, Washington, the CIA and sections of the media being the main offenders. By all accounts, he was accorded little sympathy by Johnny Carson when he appeared on the Tonight Show. Also, Ferrie was murdered and one of his witnesses changed his story after being sworn in (I can't recall his name). Overall, he didn't have a smooth run and apparently the trial judge wasn't favorably disposed to his case either. I'm only going on the book and the film JFK on this last point so I stand to be corrected.

He was obviously a self publicist but it must be remembered that he was elected, making him a politician as well as DA. His alligator mouth might have raised unrealistically high expectations of closure but it also drew attention to the fact that there was something very wrong about the WC. For this he deserves credit.

By the time Garrison got into this boat and started his "rowing", many of the problems associated with the WC solution to the assassination were well known.

Garrison merely played upon these concepts and thereafter pushed the theories into the "big" conspiracy/multiple assassin scenario.

And, in so doing, he so discredited the subject matter to the extent that it became a joke!

In addition to this, Garrison's "Witch Hunt" effectively guilded everyone to looking at "his hand" of smoke and mirrors, while the simple facts were quite available for anyone in New Orleans who desired to follow up on exactly WHO Lee Harvey Oswald was.

"Smoke & Mirrors" & "Watch this Hand".---------------------The Garrison Legacy.

As to "disliking" Garrison. Quite the contrary! He has my admiration and respect.

Of course, I have always had respect for a "good" con-man, and for that matter, anyone who "snookers" members of the general public so well that he still has his "followers" & "true-believers" long after he is dead and gone.

The Man deserves an EMMY!

"There is a moral obligation to take advantage of all suckers"------------W.C. Fields

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A few quick thoughts on this topic.

1. When Ramsey Clark said that Shaw had been investigated and cleared, he was thinking of Ferrie, who had been investigated and cleared in 1963. He admitted as much later.

2. David Ferrie died just after being released from Garrison's custody but before being officially charged. His death made them move fast on Shaw. The LBJ tapes reveal that Johnson was told by Ramsey Clark that Garrison was privately saying Johnson did it. Clark's source that Garrison was saying such things? Hale Boggs. The date of the conversation? Two days before Ferrie, Garrison's prime suspect/witness, died from mysterious causes. Coincidence? Maybe.

3. Anyone who thinks Garrison's case was a deliberate sham to discredit the conspiracy crowd hasn't done their homework. The Zapruder film was shown 7 times I believe at the trial, and convinced virtually all who saw it that Kennedy WAS killed by a conspiracy. Furthermore, the cross-examination of autopsy doctor Pierre Finck proved the President's autopsy was extremely suspect. Such evidence wouldn't have been introduced in a cover-up. As far as the case against Shaw, well, Garrison himself admitted they didn't have much of a case, and even less of one since he couldn't use Shaw's admission he was Bertrand. Garrison said the jury did the right thing to acquit Shaw, but that he'd had to try him since a Grand Jury had already handed down the indictments. That the Shaw trial was used to discredit the conspiracy community came from two sources: the media's resentment of Garrison's overly enthusiastic tactics, and the media's outright FEAR that Garrison was onto something. One should wonder why the main evidence discrediting Russo came from James Phelan, and why his admitted accomplice in this act was Robert Maheu, Howard Hughes' right hand, mafia cohort, and an undercover CIA op involved in the assassination attempts on Castro. One should also wonder why Cali Gov Ronald Reagan, who refused to extradite a number of potential witnesses, would end up on the Rockefeller Commission investigating the CIA.

That Garrison's investigation was successfully SPUN into a negative for the conspiracy buffs should by no means lead one to think Garrison had anything less than good intentions.

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Pat, are you aware that Ronald Reagan, in one of his radio broadcasts in the late seventies, stated he believed the assassination was probably a conspiracy?

(I was going to complement you for this worthwhile post but I am afraid John will say I was trying to use flattery to gain your allegiance. I'm not sure if that strange comment is an insult to your intelligence or to mine.)

Edited by Tim Gratz
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Pat, are you aware that Ronald Reagan, in one of his radio broadcasts in the late seventies, stated he believed the assassination was probably a conspiracy?

(I was going to complement you for this worthwhile post but I am afraid John will say I was trying to use flattery to gain your allegiance. I'm not sure if that strange comment is an insult to your intelligence or to mine.)

You make a good point about Reagan. While his Justice Department refused to follow up on the HSCA's recommendations, he personally may have believed in a conspiracy. It is undoubtedly intriguing that Reagan picked Richard Schweiker as his running mate in 76, even though Schweiker was the man who first ID'ed David Atlee Phillips as Maurice Bishop.

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I'd never thought about the Schweiker connection before, Pat. Interesting. As I am sure everyone knows, Schweiker strongly believed in a conspiracy.

I had always viewed Reagan's unusual pre-convention selection of his running mate as a "hail Mary" desperation pass to attract moderate GOP delegate votes.

John says I am a right-wing extremist. For what it is worth, I supported Ford over Reagan in 1976. Even though I was closer philosophically to Ford, I did not nothing Ford had done anything bad enough to deny him the nomination and I was concerned that an inter-party rivalry would cost the GOP the 1976 election (which it may very well have done). Of course, Ford's pardon on Nixon also surely played a role.

Our nation suffered much under Jimmy Carter. I think he is a good man with the best intentions but he was a very weak president.

But in retrospect, in Ford had won in 1976 he probably would have been re-elected in 1980 and who knows what would have happened to Reagan? As I am sure y'all know, I think Reagan one of our greatest presidents, who helped win the Cold War simply by deciding and working to win it (the strategy suggested by Barry Goldwater, of course, in his book "Why Not Victory?").

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Mr. Purvis,

I seem to recall on another thread you stated that Oswald killed JFK. What was that quote about suckers again?

Simply stated fact!:

There is absolutely ZERO forensic; ballistic; pathological; and/or physical evidence to support any conclusion that JFK was assassinated by shots which were fired from any location other than from the rear, and above.

(IE: The sixth floor window of the TSDB)

There is absolutely ZERO evidence to support any assassin having fired any shots during the assassination, other than LHO.

EVERY single piece of evidence which exist, points that LHO was in fact the assassin of JFK, and that he was deeply involved in the plot to assassinate JFK.

Does, this eliminate the remote possiblity that LHO was merely the "rabbit" which authorities were supposed to chase????--------NO!

But then again, neither does it eliminate the possibility that "space aliens" beamed down and conducted the assassination either.

If, and when, "this baby is ever put to bed", then it will also demonstrate that LHO was an integral part of an extremely "Radical-Right-Wing" conspiracy which effectively assassinated a President of the US.

Tom

P.S. In addition to fully enjoying the "circle" in which the illustrious "Mr. Garrison" has lead many, in chasing their own tail, I must also compliment the Warren Commission (select members) on their many "sleight-of-hand" manipulations which has also sent many a researcher down the "merry" path of not knowing what to chase.

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Our nation suffered much under Jimmy Carter. I think he is a good man with the best intentions but he was a very weak president.

Like the repetitious chanting in Animal Farm, some right-wing myth-making holds to the notion that if you say something often enough and with baseless shrill conviction, opinion will eventually become historical fact. That was the case with Garrison, and it is the case here about Jimmy Carter. Are we really to believe that a strong-willed imbecile as president is preferable to a thoughtful, nuanced graduate of one of the military academies?

Tim

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There is no rebuttal for a man without integrity.

Nothing on this website has been effectively refuted, although the zeal to defend the man who effectively covered up the truth is indeed interesting.

http://www.geocities.com/zzzpeace/garrison.htm

Also, the claim that Garrison discredited the warren Commission is silly. The only thing that Garrison ever discredited is the truth -that's why David Ferrie dropped dead while in his custody:

I think the little high school student ought to go back to school.

I need only note that you have not addressed one single point of my rebuttal. Until you do, your remarks will be given all the credence they deserve: none.

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A few quick thoughts on this topic.

1. When Ramsey Clark said that Shaw had been investigated and cleared, he was thinking of Ferrie, who had been investigated and cleared in 1963. He admitted as much later.

Ramsey Clark may have later spun his remarks in this manner, but when viewed in the light of the evidence, this isn't really credible. As I (actually Bill Davy) have shown, Shaw actually asked Cartha DeLoach if Shaw had been investigated by the FBI. He recieved a response in the affirmative, that Shaw had been investigated in December 1963 (Ferrie had been interviewed and sent off in November) as a result of information from "several parties" (Only one source, Jack Martin, gave information on Ferrie at the time). Hoover didn't want Clark to "peddle" this information (Ferrie's investigation by the FBI was public knowledge). So it isn't really a matter of Clark confusing the two in his head. It should be noted that Clark has been a consistent defender of Shaw even to the present day, for instance here (this is in 1998) he states that Garrison scapegoated Shaw because he was homosexual. This is a charge frequently made, but with no evidence.

Edited by Owen Parsons
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Garrison was of course fully aware of the reliability of Mr. Jack Martin/aka Suggs.

After all Garrison was in fact his boss, who paid him through the funds paid to Garrison's "Intelligence Agency", to pay Martin, for all of his worthwhile testimony; statements; and continued investigation of the assassination.

Garrison is most certainly not the "First" lawyer to figure a way to line his own pockets with taxpayer monies.

In fact, he is so far back on the list in New Orleans, that he hardly warrants mention.

Except for the enjoyable laugh at his antics.

Edited by Thomas H. Purvis
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Garrison was of course fully aware of the reliability of Mr. Jack Martin/aka Suggs.

After all Garrison was in fact his boss, who paid him through the funds paid to Garrison's "Intelligence Agency", to pay Martin, for all of his worthwhile testimony; statements; and continued investigation of the assassination.

Garrison is most certainly not the "First" lawyer to figure a way to line his own pockets with taxpayer monies.

In fact, he is so far back on the list in New Orleans, that he hardly warrants mention.

Except for the enjoyable laugh at his antics.

Whatever is to be said of his credibility, none of the information that Martin gave was actually untrue. Ferrie and Oswald were in the CAP together and Ferrie did go on his infamous ice skating/goose hunting trip on November 22.

That document you posted is interesting but hardly relevant to anything, seeing as how the "Garrison-Intelligence-Agency" was formed in 1967 (and, if I am reading this correctly, closed down in 1968; this is probably nothing more than an abortive experiment by Garrison) and Martin gave his information regarding Ferrie in 1963 (shortly after being pistol-whipped by Banister), so Garrison didn't pay Martin for anything. Martin made one affidavit when Garrison's probe was getting off the ground but that was about it. He didn't testify at the Shaw trial and pretty much disappeared from the scene.

Edited by Owen Parsons
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Garrison was of course fully aware of the reliability of Mr. Jack Martin/aka Suggs.

After all Garrison was in fact his boss, who paid him through the funds paid to Garrison's "Intelligence Agency", to pay Martin, for all of his worthwhile testimony; statements; and continued investigation of the assassination.

Garrison is most certainly not the "First" lawyer to figure a way to line his own pockets with taxpayer monies.

In fact, he is so far back on the list in New Orleans, that he hardly warrants mention.

Except for the enjoyable laugh at his antics.

Whatever is to be said of his credibility, none of the information that Martin gave was actually untrue. Ferrie and Oswald were in the CAP together and Ferrie did go on his infamous ice skating/duck hunting trip on November 22.

That document you posted is interesting but hardly relevant to anything, seeing as how the "Garrison-Intelligence-Agency" was formed in 1967 (and, if I am reading this correctly, closed down in 1968; this is probably nothing more than an abortive experiment by Garrison) and Martin gave his information regarding Ferrie in 1963 (shortly after being pistol-whipped by Bannister), so Garrison didn't pay Martin for anything. Martin made one affidavit when Garrison's probe was getting of the ground but that was about it. He didn't testify at the Shaw trial and pretty much disappeared from the scene.

"That document you posted is interesting but hardly relevant to anything"

Just perhaps you might run that by an attorney and see if he considers it "hardly relevant" that the person who reportedly started this (Martin/Suggs), became employed by the DA of New Orleans who was tasked to impartially evaluate the facts and determine if prosecution was warranted.

Clay Shaw was arrested by Garrison on March 1, 1967.

From at least 12/67 through 5/68, the principal person to initiate the claims was employed by the person who is responsible to prosecute, and who was ingaged in the prosecution throughout this time frame.

Rest assured that had the Defense Counsel known of this association, the "stupidity" of these actions would have been brought out and Garrison would have been presented as a bigger clown then he was at the time.

Your "High School" law experience is quite evident, as well as quite lacking.

Kind of like the credibility of the claims of Garrison.

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Garrison was of course fully aware of the reliability of Mr. Jack Martin/aka Suggs.

After all Garrison was in fact his boss, who paid him through the funds paid to Garrison's "Intelligence Agency", to pay Martin, for all of his worthwhile testimony; statements; and continued investigation of the assassination.

Garrison is most certainly not the "First" lawyer to figure a way to line his own pockets with taxpayer monies.

In fact, he is so far back on the list in New Orleans, that he hardly warrants mention.

Except for the enjoyable laugh at his antics.

Whatever is to be said of his credibility, none of the information that Martin gave was actually untrue. Ferrie and Oswald were in the CAP together and Ferrie did go on his infamous ice skating/duck hunting trip on November 22.

That document you posted is interesting but hardly relevant to anything, seeing as how the "Garrison-Intelligence-Agency" was formed in 1967 (and, if I am reading this correctly, closed down in 1968; this is probably nothing more than an abortive experiment by Garrison) and Martin gave his information regarding Ferrie in 1963 (shortly after being pistol-whipped by Bannister), so Garrison didn't pay Martin for anything. Martin made one affidavit when Garrison's probe was getting of the ground but that was about it. He didn't testify at the Shaw trial and pretty much disappeared from the scene.

"That document you posted is interesting but hardly relevant to anything"

Just perhaps you might run that by an attorney and see if he considers it "hardly relevant" that the person who reportedly started this (Martin/Suggs), became employed by the DA of New Orleans who was tasked to impartially evaluate the facts and determine if prosecution was warranted.

Clay Shaw was arrested by Garrison on March 1, 1967.

From at least 12/67 through 5/68, the principal person to initiate the claims was employed by the person who is responsible to prosecute, and who was ingaged in the prosecution throughout this time frame.

Rest assured that had the Defense Counsel known of this association, the "stupidity" of these actions would have been brought out and Garrison would have been presented as a bigger clown then he was at the time.

Your "High School" law experience is quite evident, as well as quite lacking.

Kind of like the credibility of the claims of Garrison.

Jack Martin never said a thing about Clay Shaw. He only gave information relevant to Ferrie/Banister/Oswald. Perry Russo was the chief witness against Clay Shaw at the time he was charged. Simple as that.

Edited by Owen Parsons
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Owen, is it possible to review the evidence that Jim may have overlooked, discounted (if any) or valued according to his FBI sympathies sans those sympathies in order to see what he may have missed?

A big ask of anyone, so what I mean is : does the evidence, transcripts etc exist as a 'body', accessible for review?

Owen, I found your contribution well put together and very readable. It covers information I'm not overly familiar with. I have, as a result of hte video 'The Garrison Tapes' and the movie JFK a sympathetic view of Garrison. I'm open to being shown wrong as well as having these attacks on him refuted. (One little bit of advise, Don't bit on the personal attacks, they discredit the attackers in their own words. It is unnecessary. Please continue.)

EDIT:: oops, I note you must have posted simultaneously and I see my advice is unnecessary, good on you.

Edited by John Dolva
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