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Journalists and the Assassination of JFK


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I'm interested to note that Len Colby quotes Bertrand Russell in his signature.

Russell, of course, was an early critic of the Warren Commission Report. Indeed, his rebuttal was published almost at the same time - see 16 Questions on the Assassination

Given Lord Russell's authority, one might have expected that his lucid assault on the official version of the assassination would carry a lot of weight.

However, Russell's attack was blunted by at least two factors.

First, it attracted little mass media attention. What coverage there was - in Time and the Guardian - was hostile to and dismissive of his thesis.

Second, even within specialist journals of the left, Russell was vigorously counter-attacked.

For more on this, see a brief account of Russell's role in JFK assassination follow-up investigations HERE

One of Russell's most prominent critics on the left - not in general, but specifically regarding the JFK assassination - was I.F Stone. Stone was VERY influential within the American left at the time. He has been immortalized, among other things, for his famous comment that 'Governments lie'.

However, in this particular case, Stone would not countenance government deception. Read Stone's article of October 5th, 1964

He is every bit as persuasive as Posner! In fact, Stone served as the prototype for a professional Warren Commission ‘true believer’.

What a strange role for I.F. Stone to play - Stone, the well-known skeptic of government and all its shenanigans, the prominent and influential critic of corporate crimes and unaccountable US Government agencies such as the CIA.. How out of character!

Now, I.F. Stone had a similar background to Noam Chomsky. He was born of Jewish parentage, was sympathetic to Zionism in his youth, and latterly became known as a left-wing intellectual, somewhat unsympathetic to Israel - at least in its more extreme manifestations..

Both were lifelong supporters of the Warren Commission's conclusions - despite all the evidence to the contrary. Chomsky has maintained his opposition to 'conspiracy theories' through into the 21st Century. He was one of the first prominent voices on the left to decry those who doubt the official account of 9-11.

There is a growing perception in sophisticated left cricles that Chomsky is, in reality, a "left-gatekeeper" - see for instance Jeff Blankfort's critique in this interview. There's an interesting account of Chomsky as a drag on the 'JFK Truth Movement' here.

To my knowledge, I. F. Stone has not attracted this kind of criticism until now. As he died more than a decade ago. Stone has been somewhat shielded from debate via the internet - after all, he's no longer a contemporary commentator.

But I believe I.F. Stone must also be under suspicion as a deep level Zionist agent / ally. Someone to be called upon in cases of extreme importance only - such as spinning away left-wing interest in the assassination of JFK, back when the truth about the Dallas murders really was a hot issue - in 1964.

In my opinion, the strange and anomalous behaviour of both I. F. Stone and Noam Chomsky in relation to the JFK assassination makes sense only if:

[a] Final Judgment is essentially correct i.e. pro-Israeli forces coordinated the JFK assassination, co-opting allies outside their immediate network as necessary.

Both I. F. Stone and Noam Chomsky have a deep loyalty to the Zionist cause - deeper than their loyalty to the truth.

________________________

In anticipation of the accusation of ‘anti-Semitism’ (a near certainty, I wearily imagine), I’d like to say that I believe the term to be inherently meaningless. Because it lacks precise meaning, an accusation of ‘anti-Semitism’, once levied, cannot be refuted. That’s why it’s so useful to those who deploy it as a weapon.

Why should someone, like myself, with strong sympathies for the Palestinian cause be ‘anti-Semitic’? (most Palestinians speak Arabic). Why should someone who admires many of the alleged sayings of Jesus Christ be ‘anti-Semitic’ (he spoke Aramaic), On the other hand, I dislike a number of self-styled Jews who speak barely a word of Hebrew, Arabic - or any other Semitic language.

To anticipate a more meaningful accusation, am I ‘anti-Jewish’?

The truth is that in some cases, I am. In other cases, I’m not. It depends… I don't hold opinions that attempt to encompass millions of people in a single crass generalization.

Jeff Blankfort , for instance, I regard as one of the unsung heroes of our times. I’m also impressed by the writings of Gilad Atzmon, Israel Shamir, Paul Eisen and Israel Shahak. I like the work – and the humanity – of artists such as Daniel Barenboim and Yehudi Menuhin. I could list more – a lot more – Jews for whom I have great respect.

Chomsky and Stone I’m inclined to put in a different category, for reasons I've already provided.

I might make a similar observation about Jewish organizations. I like some of them. I dislike others. This one I hold in the highest regard. This one disgusts me.

There is clearly NOT an evil conspiracy so vast it encompasses all Jewish people.

There are, however, quite evidently conspiracies that involve numerous Jewish people.

I’d make a similar comment about Brits, Italians or Chinese.

There is evidence, however, as our world races headlong towards globalization, that Jewish (and specifically Zionist) conspiratorial networks are increasingly winning out over - or swallowing up - their competitors.

The Zionist movement did not invent evil, but taken as a whole, it does seem to very proficient at it.

An interesting point about I. F. Stone and Noam Chomsky. However, I am not convinced this is because they were both Jewish. It has to be admitted that most left-wing activists in the United States and the rest of the world have shown little interest in the assassination of JFK.

One of the reasons for this is that JFK is seen by the left as a typical American politician who posed no real threat to capitalism. Therefore they believe that he was probably killed by Oswald. They accept there was a cover-up but put this down to an attempt to hide the incompetence of the CIA and the FBI.

What those on the left fail to grasp is that in 1963 JFK did pose a serious threat to the ruling elite. So did Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy in 1968.

Conspiracy theorists have been successfully smeared as being paranoid. Those on the left wish to avoid this label. They would rather see themselves as romantic revolutionaries. They know that they are unable to change the system. However, that does not really matter. As long as the remain intellectually respectable, they are more than happy to earn a good living criticizing the failings of capitalism.

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I'm interested to note that Len Colby quotes Bertrand Russell in his signature.

Russell, of course, was an early critic of the Warren Commission Report. Indeed, his rebuttal was published almost at the same time - see 16 Questions on the Assassination

Given Lord Russell's authority, one might have expected that his lucid assault on the official version of the assassination would carry a lot of weight.

However, Russell's attack was blunted by at least two factors.

First, it attracted little mass media attention. What coverage there was - in Time and the Guardian - was hostile to and dismissive of his thesis.

Second, even within specialist journals of the left, Russell was vigorously counter-attacked.

For more on this, see a brief account of Russell's role in JFK assassination follow-up investigations HERE

One of Russell's most prominent critics on the left - not in general, but specifically regarding the JFK assassination - was I.F Stone. Stone was VERY influential within the American left at the time. He has been immortalized, among other things, for his famous comment that 'Governments lie'.

However, in this particular case, Stone would not countenance government deception. Read Stone's article of October 5th, 1964

He is every bit as persuasive as Posner! In fact, Stone served as the prototype for a professional Warren Commission ‘true believer’.

What a strange role for I.F. Stone to play - Stone, the well-known skeptic of government and all its shenanigans, the prominent and influential critic of corporate crimes and unaccountable US Government agencies such as the CIA.. How out of character!

Now, I.F. Stone had a similar background to Noam Chomsky. He was born of Jewish parentage, was sympathetic to Zionism in his youth, and latterly became known as a left-wing intellectual, somewhat unsympathetic to Israel - at least in its more extreme manifestations..

Both were lifelong supporters of the Warren Commission's conclusions - despite all the evidence to the contrary. Chomsky has maintained his opposition to 'conspiracy theories' through into the 21st Century. He was one of the first prominent voices on the left to decry those who doubt the official account of 9-11.

There is a growing perception in sophisticated left cricles that Chomsky is, in reality, a "left-gatekeeper" - see for instance Jeff Blankfort's critique in this interview. There's an interesting account of Chomsky as a drag on the 'JFK Truth Movement' here.

To my knowledge, I. F. Stone has not attracted this kind of criticism until now. As he died more than a decade ago. Stone has been somewhat shielded from debate via the internet - after all, he's no longer a contemporary commentator.

But I believe I.F. Stone must also be under suspicion as a deep level Zionist agent / ally. Someone to be called upon in cases of extreme importance only - such as spinning away left-wing interest in the assassination of JFK, back when the truth about the Dallas murders really was a hot issue - in 1964.

In my opinion, the strange and anomalous behaviour of both I. F. Stone and Noam Chomsky in relation to the JFK assassination makes sense only if:

[a] Final Judgment is essentially correct i.e. pro-Israeli forces coordinated the JFK assassination, co-opting allies outside their immediate network as necessary.

Both I. F. Stone and Noam Chomsky have a deep loyalty to the Zionist cause - deeper than their loyalty to the truth.

________________________

In anticipation of the accusation of ‘anti-Semitism’ (a near certainty, I wearily imagine), I’d like to say that I believe the term to be inherently meaningless. Because it lacks precise meaning, an accusation of ‘anti-Semitism’, once levied, cannot be refuted. That’s why it’s so useful to those who deploy it as a weapon.

Why should someone, like myself, with strong sympathies for the Palestinian cause be ‘anti-Semitic’? (most Palestinians speak Arabic). Why should someone who admires many of the alleged sayings of Jesus Christ be ‘anti-Semitic’ (he spoke Aramaic), On the other hand, I dislike a number of self-styled Jews who speak barely a word of Hebrew, Arabic - or any other Semitic language.

To anticipate a more meaningful accusation, am I ‘anti-Jewish’?

The truth is that in some cases, I am. In other cases, I’m not. It depends… I don't hold opinions that attempt to encompass millions of people in a single crass generalization.

Jeff Blankfort , for instance, I regard as one of the unsung heroes of our times. I’m also impressed by the writings of Gilad Atzmon, Israel Shamir, Paul Eisen and Israel Shahak. I like the work – and the humanity – of artists such as Daniel Barenboim and Yehudi Menuhin. I could list more – a lot more – Jews for whom I have great respect.

Chomsky and Stone I’m inclined to put in a different category, for reasons I've already provided.

I might make a similar observation about Jewish organizations. I like some of them. I dislike others. This one I hold in the highest regard. This one disgusts me.

There is clearly NOT an evil conspiracy so vast it encompasses all Jewish people.

There are, however, quite evidently conspiracies that involve numerous Jewish people.

I’d make a similar comment about Brits, Italians or Chinese.

There is evidence, however, as our world races headlong towards globalization, that Jewish (and specifically Zionist) conspiratorial networks are increasingly winning out over - or swallowing up - their competitors.

The Zionist movement did not invent evil, but taken as a whole, it does seem to very proficient at it.

An interesting point about I. F. Stone and Noam Chomsky. However, I am not convinced this is because they were both Jewish. It has to be admitted that most left-wing activists in the United States and the rest of the world have shown little interest in the assassination of JFK.

One of the reasons for this is that JFK is seen by the left as a typical American politician who posed no real threat to capitalism. Therefore they believe that he was probably killed by Oswald. They accept there was a cover-up but put this down to an attempt to hide the incompetence of the CIA and the FBI.

What those on the left fail to grasp is that in 1963 JFK did pose a serious threat to the ruling elite. So did Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy in 1968.

Conspiracy theorists have been successfully smeared as being paranoid. Those on the left wish to avoid this label. They would rather see themselves as romantic revolutionaries. They know that they are unable to change the system. However, that does not really matter. As long as the remain intellectually respectable, they are more than happy to earn a good living criticizing the failings of capitalism.

Outstanding on several points.

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Conspiracy theorists have been successfully smeared as being paranoid. Those on the left wish to avoid this label. They would rather see themselves as romantic revolutionaries. They know that they are unable to change the system. However, that does not really matter. As long as the remain intellectually respectable, they are more than happy to earn a good living criticizing the failings of capitalism.

Good points John, this too can be said of historians, who don't want to be seen as in any way extremist by their peers. They take the assassination in an all too broad perspective and do not take a detailed look into the circumstances surrounding the murder.

I hate to admit it but had I not become interested in the assassination I would have become one of the left leaning romantics as seen above.

John

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John, I think these posts overlook somethiing: Earl Warren. Warren was a huge hero to the left. As pointed out in my presentation, Johnson's drafting Warren to head the Commission to shut off speculation as to Russian involvement is an absolute FARCE. The people who suspected Russian involvement wouldn't trust Warren on anything. It was Richard Russell's role to shut shut those people down. No, Warren's involvement only makes sense when one realizes that there were no Northern liberals on the Commission. Warren was their representative. Establishment liberals like Stone would never question Warren. The WC report DID include some criticisms of the SS and the FBI--perhaps the first government report to do so. The establishment left was satisfied.

Many of the outspoken critics of the Warren Commission--perhaps a majority--were JEWISH, by the way. Harold Weisberg, Mark Lane, and Edward Epstein come to mind. If one is to think like a conspirator, it would only make sense to pick a Palestinian for your next round. Voila! Sirhan Sirhan. Coincidence?

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One of the reasons for this is that JFK is seen by the left as a typical American politician who posed no real threat to capitalism. Therefore they believe that he was probably killed by Oswald. They accept there was a cover-up but put this down to an attempt to hide the incompetence of the CIA and the FBI.

What those on the left fail to grasp is that in 1963 JFK did pose a serious threat to the ruling elite. So did Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy in 1968.

Conspiracy theorists have been successfully smeared as being paranoid. Those on the left wish to avoid this label. They would rather see themselves as romantic revolutionaries. They know that they are unable to change the system. However, that does not really matter. As long as the remain intellectually respectable, they are more than happy to earn a good living criticizing the failings of capitalism.

This is well argued John.

I'd respond, however, that the view of JFK as "a typical American politician" was constructed. It was not self-evident. Moreover, as Jim DiEugenio argued persuasively, it was plain wrong - see The Left and the Death of Kennedy

I attended university in England in the early 1970s. I rarely heard a good word about Kennedy from friends on the 'left'. I certainly never heard about his remarkable global disarmament initiative.

Perhaps we were all fools. At that time, most of us genuinely believed that politics would shift more and more in a progressive direction (how wrong we were!). We didn't have much time for 'has beens' like Kennedy... although come to think of it, Marx and Lenin were very popular, and they'd been dead a lot longer.

I'm willing to accept I was a fool - but can't lose the suspicion that I was fooled as well. There was some clever management of ideology at work. Chomsky was one of the key influences. He downplayed the bright side of Kennedy's polices and hyped up the dark side of 'Camelot'.

That led to a view - which I shared - that even if JFK was murdered in a conspiracy, it didn't really matter that much. After all, he was just another member of the ruling class, just another crim.

Pat Speer's point is also interesting:

Many of the outspoken critics of the Warren Commission--perhaps a majority--were JEWISH, by the way. Harold Weisberg, Mark Lane, and Edward Epstein come to mind.

I'm not familiar with Harold Weisberg and Edward Epstein - I'll have to check them out (references welcome).

Mark Lane is certainly a hero I haven't missed.

Bertrand Russell worked closely with Ralph Schoenman - also Jewish, I understand. These days, Ralph and his partner Mya Shone maintain the rage on air. Their radio show, Taking Aim covers conspiracies and other evil deeds from a Marxist perspective. An unusual brew. Archives available as free downloads.

Schoenman 's Hidden History of Zionism is also a most interesting read.

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Sid,

Welcome to the Forum. I agree with John that your initial post was outstanding. I've always been puzzled by Choamsky's endorsement of something as palpably phony as the WC. Your suggestion that he might be playing a gatekeeper role is interesting. If true, as you say, it shows he serves a higher master than the truth. Very sad.

Thank you for the link to the ICAHD site. It's a fascinating read. I agree they're a great organisation. It shows that many thinking Israelis don't fall for the absurd line that the Palestinians are solely responsible for their sorry plight.

The issue of what JFK meant to the left is also an interesting one. The left probably couldn't accept that a person born into such privilege could share their ideals. They were wrong. I agree that the perception of JFK as a typical politician is a media construct, not an accurate picture. He's the most untypical politician in recent history.

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Sid,

Welcome to the Forum. I agree with John that your initial post was outstanding. I've always been puzzled by Chomsky's endorsement of something as palpably phony as the WC. Your suggestion that he might be playing a gatekeeper role is interesting. If true, as you say, it shows he serves a higher master than the truth. Very sad.

Thank you for the link to the ICAHD site. It's a fascinating read. I agree they're a great organisation. It shows that many thinking Israelis don't fall for the absurd line that the Palestinians are solely responsible for their sorry plight.

The issue of what JFK meant to the left is also an interesting one. The left probably couldn't accept that a person born into such privilege could share their ideals. They were wrong. I agree that the perception of JFK as a typical politician is a media construct, not an accurate picture. He's the most untypical politician in recent history.

Thanks Mark.

I read through some of the forum contents - just a small fraction - before posting. I appreciate your contributions.

Prejudice against JFK because of his wealthy background was probably a factor on the left. It wouldn't have been the first time 'the left' shied away from success. Offered the hand of friendship from someone inside the plutocracy - and all we do is snigger when he's popped :-) Monty Python would have approved.

Actually, while I still use the terms 'left' and 'right' and believe they have some utility, I increasingly believe they can obscure as much as they elucidate.

Until quite recently, I routinely ignored (or at best skimmed with a condescending attitude) material that I believed emanated from 'right wing' sources. Of course, I wasn't really able to do that. Where I live, the only choice of daily print media is News Ltd...

It eventually dawned on me - 9-11 was the trigger - that my self-imposed "ignore the 'right-wing' rule", when applied in practice, meant I was oblivious only to right wing perspectives that Murdoch & co don't like.

That's a recipe for ignorance and gross bias. It meant that the work of authors such as M.C. Piper was not available to me. Big mistake.

In a democracy - at least in a democracy where votes are counted with some accuracy, as I believe was still generally the case in JFK's America - success is only possible by appealing to a wide range of voters. Kennedy achieved that. He was therefore able to deliver some outcomes for the left from the Presidency. Of course, he'd always have been a disappointment to some sections of the left. He wasn't about to overthrow capitalism. But he did see that capitalism urgently needed managing in the public interest at a global level - and appeared quite successful in taking on that mighty task, in the short period available to him, with the power and authority of the US Administration behind him. He was also interested in co-existence with other forms of governance.

I'd thought for decades that there was something 'not quite right' about official story regarding the assassination of JFK. But I also imagined the passage of time would render solving the assassination mystery increasingly difficult. Those behind the assassination and subsequent cover-up, I imagined, had got away with it. It would be harder and harder to spot them with the passage of time and the growing confusion of so much faulty info and outright disinformation.

I now think that's incorrect.

The villains stand out like proverbial dogs balls - once one reverses the assumption that the task of researchers is to 'prove' one thing or another (the mafia dunnit, the CIA dunnit, the MIC dunnit etc).

If, on the other hand, researchers 'assume' there was a conspiracy to kill JFK and cover-up the plot - not a hard conclusion to reach, given the non-existence in the real world of miracles like 'magic bullets' - our task becomes simpler.

We need to take a close look at the key individuals who promulgated and sustained the official version of events.

Of course, some of them may have made innocent mistakes. It's possible I. F. Stone fell into that category. It possible he was a purveyor of well-intended misinformation, as opposed to a deliberate disinformationalist.

However, I find it very hard to accept that Arlen Specter could have made an 'innocent mistake' over the 'magic bullet' theory (I understand he was the originator of this absurd proposition).

Certainly, Specter's advocacy of physical impossibilities doesn't appear to have harmed his subsequent career. These days, he's one of the most powerful Senators on Capitol Hill. When the latest Chief Justice of the Supreme Court was anointed, Specter was among the first to shake his hand.

Specter occasionally postures as a liberal and teases Bush over his abandonment of civil liberties. The games they play!

And yes, like Posner himself, Specter is a committed Zionist with a Jewish background.

The kind of guy, as we've been told by Mossad defector Victor Ostrovsky, who'd be asked to 'help out' in times of need.

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Prejudice against JFK because of his wealthy background was probably a factor on the left. It wouldn't have been the first time 'the left' shied away from success. Offered the hand of friendship from someone inside the plutocracy - and all we do is snigger when he's popped :-) Monty Python would have approved.

I was a left-wing activist in 1963 and did not immediately feel that the assassination was connected to any right-wing conspiracy. However, at the time, no one on the left knew anything about his attempts to bring an end to the Cold War. Nor were they aware of his attempts to remove political corruption in Congress or his plans to pull-out from Vietnam. Nor did many on the left in Europe know anything about his 1963 Tax Bill that attempted to remove tax loopholes, including the oil depletion allowance.

I, like most others on the left in Europe, assumed it was the work of a lone gunman and that the cover-up was just an attempt to hide incompetence in the CIA and FBI.

However, it has to be remembered that the first two book published claiming that there had been a conspiracy were written by Thomas G. Buchanan (Who Killed Kennedy?) and Joachim Joesten (Oswald, Assassin or Fall Guy?). Both these books were published in 1964. The immediate reaction of the FBI and CIA was to label Buchanan and Joesten as “communists” (both men had indeed been members of the Communist Party, Joesten in Germany in the 1930s and Buchanan in America in the 1940s). Mark Lane (also a left-wing activist) did not publish Rush to Judgment until 1966.

Buchanan and Joesten both argued that JFK had been assassinated because of his attempts to bring an end to the Cold War. Both appeared to have been given information about JFK’s secret talks with Fidel Castro (I expect this had come from Jean Daniel who was a friend of Buchanan and probably knew Joesten from his work as a journalist).

Other left of centre journalists like Drew Pearson and Clark Mollenhoff (who had been investigating the MICIC at the time) showed little interest in the assassination.

However, it is not left-wing journalists as much as left-wing historians who should be condemned for their lack of interest in the JFK assassination. Over the years documents have been released that clearly shows that the FBI and CIA were involved in a cover-up. The fact that thousands of documents are still being held back that relates to the assassination should also have persuaded them to ask some serious questions about the case. Other documents have been released that shows that JFK was not your typical right-wing politician. In 1963 he was clearly trying to both bring an end to the Cold War. Probably even more important than that, JFK was attempting to deal with the corrupt relationship that existed as part of the Military Industrial Congressional Intelligence Complex (MICIC). He sacked Fred Korth in October, 1963, and his brother Robert, was leaking details of the corrupt activities of people like Lyndon Johnson and Bobby Baker to John Williams, the “Conscience of the Senate”.

There is now enough evidence to suggest that there was a right-wing conspiracy to kill JFK. Yet historians on the left still ignore the subject. When they do write about JFK they do not argue that he was killed by a lone gunman. They just ignore this part of the story. It is as if the person who killed JFK is irrelevant to understanding his political career.

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However, it is not left-wing journalists as much as left-wing historians who should be condemned for their lack of interest in the JFK assassination. Over the years documents have been released that clearly shows that the FBI and CIA were involved in a cover-up. The fact that thousands of documents are still being held back that relates to the assassination should also have persuaded them to ask some serious questions about the case. Other documents have been released that shows that JFK was not your typical right-wing politician. In 1963 he was clearly trying to both bring an end to the Cold War. Probably even more important than that, JFK was attempting to deal with the corrupt relationship that existed as part of the Military Industrial Congressional Intelligence Complex (MICIC). He sacked Fred Korth in October, 1963, and his brother Robert, was leaking details of the corrupt activities of people like Lyndon Johnson and Bobby Baker to John Williams, the “Conscience of the Senate”.

There is now enough evidence to suggest that there was a right-wing conspiracy to kill JFK. Yet historians on the left still ignore the subject. When they do write about JFK they do not argue that he was killed by a lone gunman. They just ignore this part of the story. It is as if the person who killed JFK is irrelevant to understanding his political career.

Why professional historians avoid the JFK case like the vampire avoids holy water. I am sure there are a congeries of reasons for this neglect. My own experience tells me that young members of the professoriate-those who are just starting out and are focused on tenure-do not want to get into this subject because they fear being labelled as "not serious," "conspiratorialists, etc.by senior professionals. I think there has been a cloud over this subject in academia largely because the "Who Killed JFK" seems to attract all kinds of people who think that history is all conspiracy.

I don't subscribe to this view at all. I am convinced that, in time, professional historians, political scientists, and others with a serious interest in the history of this poor perishing republic will be forced one day to come to terms with Dallas. This is, to my mind, the beginning of America's slipping into the Dark Ages and if we want to make some sense about what brought about this decline and fall we will have to face up to the forces and motives responsible for the murder of JFK.

Another factor that must be given weight is the sheer volume of the documentation. The NARA in College Park holds 4 to 5 million pages of documents. Not all are directly relevant, of course, but still this is a daunting challenge for any single researcher. Then there is the stuff that has never been turned over and has either been commited to the "memory hole" or is hidden away in "not to be filed files."

I just reviewed a MS by Michael Kurtz that will be coming out this year under the University of Kansas Press label. His Introduction speaks to your question better than I have above and I recommend you keep your eye peeled for it.

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I'm interested to note that Len Colby quotes Bertrand Russell in his signature.

Russell, of course, was an early critic of the Warren Commission Report. Indeed, his rebuttal was published almost at the same time - see 16 Questions on the Assassination

Given Lord Russell's authority, one might have expected that his lucid assault on the official version of the assassination would carry a lot of weight.

However, Russell's attack was blunted by at least two factors.

First, it attracted little mass media attention. What coverage there was - in Time and the Guardian - was hostile to and dismissive of his thesis.

Second, even within specialist journals of the left, Russell was vigorously counter-attacked.

For more on this, see a brief account of Russell's role in JFK assassination follow-up investigations HERE

One of Russell's most prominent critics on the left - not in general, but specifically regarding the JFK assassination - was I.F Stone. Stone was VERY influential within the American left at the time. He has been immortalized, among other things, for his famous comment that 'Governments lie'.

However, in this particular case, Stone would not countenance government deception. Read Stone's article of October 5th, 1964

He is every bit as persuasive as Posner! In fact, Stone served as the prototype for a professional Warren Commission 'true believer'.

What a strange role for I.F. Stone to play - Stone, the well-known skeptic of government and all its shenanigans, the prominent and influential critic of corporate crimes and unaccountable US Government agencies such as the CIA.. How out of character!

Now, I.F. Stone had a similar background to Noam Chomsky. He was born of Jewish parentage, was sympathetic to Zionism in his youth, and latterly became known as a left-wing intellectual, somewhat unsympathetic to Israel - at least in its more extreme manifestations..

Both were lifelong supporters of the Warren Commission's conclusions - despite all the evidence to the contrary. Chomsky has maintained his opposition to 'conspiracy theories' through into the 21st Century. He was one of the first prominent voices on the left to decry those who doubt the official account of 9-11.

There is a growing perception in sophisticated left cricles that Chomsky is, in reality, a "left-gatekeeper" - see for instance Jeff Blankfort's critique in this interview. There's an interesting account of Chomsky as a drag on the 'JFK Truth Movement' here.

To my knowledge, I. F. Stone has not attracted this kind of criticism until now. As he died more than a decade ago. Stone has been somewhat shielded from debate via the internet - after all, he's no longer a contemporary commentator.

But I believe I.F. Stone must also be under suspicion as a deep level Zionist agent / ally. Someone to be called upon in cases of extreme importance only - such as spinning away left-wing interest in the assassination of JFK, back when the truth about the Dallas murders really was a hot issue - in 1964.

In my opinion, the strange and anomalous behaviour of both I. F. Stone and Noam Chomsky in relation to the JFK assassination makes sense only if:

[a] Final Judgment is essentially correct i.e. pro-Israeli forces coordinated the JFK assassination, co-opting allies outside their immediate network as necessary.

Both I. F. Stone and Noam Chomsky have a deep loyalty to the Zionist cause - deeper than their loyalty to the truth.

________________________

In anticipation of the accusation of 'anti-Semitism' (a near certainty, I wearily imagine), I'd like to say that I believe the term to be inherently meaningless. Because it lacks precise meaning, an accusation of 'anti-Semitism', once levied, cannot be refuted. That's why it's so useful to those who deploy it as a weapon.

Why should someone, like myself, with strong sympathies for the Palestinian cause be 'anti-Semitic'? (most Palestinians speak Arabic). Why should someone who admires many of the alleged sayings of Jesus Christ be 'anti-Semitic' (he spoke Aramaic), On the other hand, I dislike a number of self-styled Jews who speak barely a word of Hebrew, Arabic - or any other Semitic language.

To anticipate a more meaningful accusation, am I 'anti-Jewish'?

The truth is that in some cases, I am. In other cases, I'm not. It depends… I don't hold opinions that attempt to encompass millions of people in a single crass generalization.

Jeff Blankfort , for instance, I regard as one of the unsung heroes of our times. I'm also impressed by the writings of Gilad Atzmon, Israel Shamir, Paul Eisen and Israel Shahak. I like the work – and the humanity – of artists such as Daniel Barenboim and Yehudi Menuhin. I could list more – a lot more – Jews for whom I have great respect.

Chomsky and Stone I'm inclined to put in a different category, for reasons I've already provided.

I might make a similar observation about Jewish organizations. I like some of them. I dislike others. This one I hold in the highest regard. This one disgusts me.

There is clearly NOT an evil conspiracy so vast it encompasses all Jewish people.

There are, however, quite evidently conspiracies that involve numerous Jewish people.

I'd make a similar comment about Brits, Italians or Chinese.

There is evidence, however, as our world races headlong towards globalization, that Jewish (and specifically Zionist) conspiratorial networks are increasingly winning out over - or swallowing up - their competitors.

The Zionist movement did not invent evil, but taken as a whole, it does seem to very proficient at it.

Your theory it not merely spurious it is remarkably spurious. It is based on fallacious assumptions.

1) People can't honestly agree with the Warren Commission with out an ulterior motive, I have serious doubts as to whether LHO acted alone but that doesn't mean that people who believe this have a hidden agenda.

2) If a Jewish person agrees with the Warren Commissions it must be because they know the Mossad killed JFK and they are covering for Israel.

This is frankly a stupid and bigoted line of reasoning. It plays on the stereotype that Jews can't be trusted and we owe our loyal to Israel first and America (or what ever country they live in) second. You even assume that Chomsky who has been such a constant critic of Israel that he has been repeatedly (and unjustly) accused of being a "self hating Jew" really is a closet Zionist covering for the Jewish state that he knows killed the President of the US. You must think his opposition to Israel is an act. If Chomsky really was secretly covering for Israel it is odd that Edward Said would have maintained such a close relationship with him. Many people have criticized Chomsky for his stance regarding the assassination. In the grand scheme of things Chomsky's rejection of conspiracy theories regarding the assassination made very little difference. I doubt many people who would otherwise have adopted such an outlook rejected it because of Chomsky on the other hand his writings attacking Israel and the US's support of that country have been very influential among leftists.

Norman Mailer used to believe there was a conspiracy now he doesn't I guess the Mossad got to him and told him his position was a threat to Israel's continued existence and like a good Jew he changed his tune!

How do you take into account non-Jews who don't think there was a conspiracy, is Alexander Cockburn a closet Zionist? What about McAdams are you going to tell us he is a Jewish Zionist too? We let's see he has an Irish last name and teaches at a Catholic university, yeah he's probably Jewish. Larry Surdivan, Gay Savage and Dale Myers must be too.

Following your logic authors who back theories that don't put the blame on Israel or at least go down the CIA/Clay Shaw route are suspect. Your ludicrous line of reasoning "makes sense only if" you're anti-Semitic

I case you missed it Herr Piper showed up here and proffered his thesis but had few takers. I imagine at this point every one in the JFK research community has heard about Final Judgment but very few seem swayed by it's arguments. The few that do that I've seen have strong anti-Semitic or anti-Israeli biases. Indeed his book has gotten far more attention in anti-Semitic and anti Israel circles that among assassination researchers. . You find Piper thesis credible is because it fits with your extreme hostility to Israel, you are able to turn logic on it's head to fit your preconceived notions.

If there is evidence to support the "Israel and the Jews did it" theory it's odd that the only person to write book with that thesis is an anti-Semitic, Holocaust denying new comer to the assassination who blames Jews for everything from Watergate and the pedophile priest scandal to the assassinations of Lincoln and Martin Luther King (jr.) and has spent his entire career working for a neo-Nazi.

You claim not to be anti-Jewish but your line of thinking, the quote I highlighted below and appreciation of Israel Shamir make your claim suspect. Edgar J. Steele is another author you might enjoy, start with this essay. http://www.nationalvanguard.org/story.php?id=6681

There is evidence, however, as our world races headlong towards globalization, that Jewish (and specifically Zionist) conspiratorial networks are increasingly winning out over - or swallowing up - their competitors.

Please provide the evidence to back this assertion.

Since you live in Australia you might want to join this group

http://www.adelaideinstitute.org/

Len

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Hi Len

I can’t undertake to deal with all future rebuttals in such detail. There are only so many hours in the day.

Nevertheless, you raise some important points, and a reply is in order:

your theory it not merely spurious it is remarkably spurious. It is based on fallacious assumptions.

1) People can't honestly agree with the Warren Commission with out an ulterior motive, I have serious doubts as to whether LHO acted alone but that doesn't mean that people who believe this have a hidden agenda.

OK. I agree with that. People can believe in many things, including a rather obvious fraud such as the Warren Commission report, for a range of reasons.

Blind faith in US Government honesty is probably the main reason so many folk believed in the Warren Commission, although there’s not many of them left these days.

As I pointed out, Izzy Stone and Noam Chomsky can’t be accused of that.

When one picks through the 'logic' they each apply to draw their conclusion that LHO was indeed a 'lone nut' assassin, it seems (to me) strangely out of character with their usual skepticism. In both cases they rely on shooting down straw men to make their case. Yet neither the late I.F. Stone, nor Chomsky. Were or are fools. No one accuses them of that - I certainly don't.

Hence my suspicion that in this case, they are not merely suffering from a momentary lapse in standards. Something else seems to be at work.

2) If a Jewish person agrees with the Warren Commissions it must be because they know the Mossad killed JFK and they are covering for Israel.

I neither believe that, nor have I claimed it. That's a classic 'straw man' argument.

This is frankly a stupid and bigoted line of reasoning. It plays on the stereotype that Jews can't be trusted and we owe our loyal to Israel first and America (or what ever country they live in) second. You even assume that Chomsky who has been such a constant critic of Israel that he has been repeatedly (and unjustly) accused of being a "self hating Jew" really is a closet Zionist covering for the Jewish state that he knows killed the President of the US. You must think his opposition to Israel is an act. If Chomsky really was secretly covering for Israel it is odd that Edward Said would have maintained such a close relationship with him. Many people have criticized Chomsky for his stance regarding the assassination. In the grand scheme of things Chomsky's rejection of conspiracy theories regarding the assassination made very little difference. I doubt many people who would otherwise have adopted such an outlook rejected it because of Chomsky on the other hand his writings attacking Israel and the US's support of that country have been very influential among leftists

My case doesn't 'play' on stereotypes.

In fact, I think both Stone and Chomsky are fascinating contradictions. As, indeed are many people.

Jewish identity itself, I would argue, is enmeshed in fascinating contradictions.

In my opinion, one thing that critics of Israel and its powerful international Lobby, such as myself, cannot credibility argue is that we’d be “better off without Jews”. Nor have I ever believed or suggested that. I believe all humanity is inextricably interconnected and interdependent. “Ask not for whom the bell tolls…”

As you may have noticed, a lot of my own analysis of this specific case relies on Jewish sources such as Jeff Blankfort.

Norman Mailer used to believe there was a conspiracy now he doesn't I guess the Mossad got to him and told him his position was a threat to Israel's continued existence and like a good Jew he changed his tune!

I’m not sure I can begin to understand the inner workings of Norman Mailer’s very complex mind. One thing that can be said about Mailer is that he has the ability to mount a very tortuous argument.

See this excerpt from ‘Oswald’s Tale’. Note how Mailer dispatches the problem of the impossibility of ‘magic bullets’: “By the logic of such an argument, the proof of the magic bullet is that it happened. One cannot introduce the odds after the fact. So would go the rebuttal.” There, puff, the magic bullet is dispensed with in a couple of sentences. One wonders why it was ever called ‘magic’?

How do you take into account non-Jews who don't think there was a conspiracy, is Alexander Cockburn a closet Zionist? What about McAdams are you going to tell us he is a Jewish Zionist too? We let's see he has an Irish last name and teaches at a Catholic university, yeah he's probably Jewish. Larry Surdivan, Gay Savage and Dale Myers must be too.

Well, I can’t explain all these various anomalies.

Who, for instance, is John McAdams, what’s his personal history and what really motivates him? Damned if I know. It would be interesting to find out.

The mystery of Cockburn’s position on JFK has been discussed elsewhere – see for instance http://www.rtis.com/reg/bcs/pol/touchstone...y97/worsham.htm

I think you do point to a serious objection to the case I’m generally trying to make. It’s hard to believe that so many people are involved in the cover-up.

It’s perhaps important to clarify what’s I’m suggesting may have happened and what I’m not.

I doubt very much that I.F.Stone or the youthful Chomsky were party to the conspiracy to assassinate JFK. They may, however, have been party to the conspiracy to obscure the truth afterwards. I think they were. How, exactly, that came about, I can only speculate.

There are some clues. As I said earlier, both Chomsky and Stone had demonstrable links to Zionism in earlier parts of their lives. Chomsky has spoken of his. Regarding Stone, here’s an interesting excerpt from a reputable Jewish source, referring to a talk by Zev Meir Siegel in 2001. The speaker is introduced thus: “Siegel, who served in the Haganah, Israel's pre-state military force… was among the first agents of its Mossad,”

"Rabbi Greenberg, the head of Hillel at George Washington University, was a recruiter for Haganah. It's as simple as that," Siegel said in a telephone interview this week with The Chronicle. "The crew of the Exodus came right out of his efforts."

Siegel said that he and some others attended a meeting at the home of journalist I.F. Stone "and there was the future captain of the Exodus, Ike Aronowitz, and he and a few other people of the Mossad asked us to give up a year of lives to help Jewish people - to get them out of the camps..."

So, there were clearly longstanding connections that at the very least are compatible with the theory that Stone and Chomsky may have been influenced by a deep loyalty to Israel throughout their lives – and that this loyalty could explain seemingly anomalous stances they take on matters such as the JFK assassination.

... How, in 1964, and in the case of Chomsky somewhat later, these connections may have been triggered for the purpose of influencing their public stance on the JFK assassination - who knows?

I do not claim to have every I dotted and every T crossed. I never had a phone tap on Stone or Chomsky. If I did claim to know every detail, you might reasonably consider me prone to exaggeration.

However, if that’s to be the standard for investigative procedure in criminal cases – that a theory should only be explored if the investigator has 100% of the supporting information – then heaven help us in this brave new world.

Following your logic authors who back theories that don't put the blame on Israel or at least go down the CIA/Clay Shaw route are suspect. Your ludicrous line of reasoning "makes sense only if" you're anti-Semitic

No, that’s your parody of my logic.

I think part of the highly successful “magician’s trick” with the JFK assassination was that almost no one at all looked at Israel as a possible suspect until three decades afterwards. That had to wait until archival releases in the early 90s and books that followed such as "Israel and the Bomb" by Avner Cohen

No-one outside extremely limited and informed circles knew – until the 90s - that JFK had been in an icy stand-off with Ben Gurion over Israel’s nuclear weapons program and inspections of Dimona.

Motive wasn’t established until some thirty years after the killing!

Unlike recent, theatrical debates over WMD inspections in the context of Iraq, the inspections that Kennedy was persuaded to demand in the early 60s were secret US (not UN) inspections. He increasingly distrusted the Israeli Government in its dealings. But they were all secret at the time – see this reference for instance.

Moreover, as I explained in my initial post that opened this thread, I don’t believe the term ‘anti-Semitic’ itself makes sense – except as an intellectual weapon.

I case you missed it Herr Piper showed up here and proffered his thesis but had few takers. I imagine at this point every one in the JFK research community has heard about Final Judgment but very few seem swayed by it's arguments. The few that do that I've seen have strong anti-Semitic or anti-Israeli biases. Indeed his book has gotten far more attention in anti-Semitic and anti Israel circles that among assassination researchers. . You find Piper thesis credible is because it fits with your extreme hostility to Israel, you are able to turn logic on it's head to fit your preconceived notions.

You might ask Piper himself for an account of his difficulties in finding a mainstream publisher and distribution channels for his book. I read this account

It seems to me that when there’s such an obvious, recurrent campaign to chase the views of Piper to the margins of public discourse, it’s hardly surprising his views only find expression at the margins of public discourse.

Why hasn’t the New York Times done a serious review of Final Judgment? Why can’t it be found in high street bookshops? Why does he never get a chance to present his theory on national TV? You tell me. Why doesn't he appear on American University campuses. This story may help explain why.

Incidentally, I notice you refer to Mr Piper as ‘Herr Piper’. Is that because you have inside information that Mr Piper has German ancestory? Or do you regard the German honorific as a term of abuse? If so, why?

You say that Piper showed up on this forum and “proffered his thesis but had few takers”, making him sound like an aggressive hawker of unwanted goods.

Would it not be more accurate to say that he was invited to join, but even before he did, there was a sustained campaign against his participation by folk such as yourself? I recall wading through about 20 pages on one particular thread before he “showed up” at all. By that time, his name, character, associations, bona fides and all had been repeatedly besmirched. He was then treated to a number of unpleasant provocations until he lost patience with the quality of 'debate' he found here. A shame, in my opinion, but understandable. He’s a busy guy. If other authors were similarly treated, there wouldn't be many here at all.

If there is evidence to support the "Israel and the Jews did it" theory it's odd that the only person to write book with that thesis is an anti-Semitic, Holocaust denying new comer to the assassination who blames Jews for everything from Watergate and the pedophile priest scandal to the assassinations of Lincoln and Martin Luther King (jr.) and has spent his entire career working for a neo-Nazi.

Actually, I don’t think it’s surprising that, if the theory is actually correct that clandestine pro-Israeli forces played a coordinating role in the JFK assassination, the first author to pick up on this was not ‘left-wing’.

I for one grew up in a left wing culture that reflexively rejected anything that smacked of a ‘Jewish conspiracy’. Indeed, for people like myself, it was almost as though there were not – and could not be – such a thing.

I don’t think that was 'accidental'. Some leftist leaders – especially Trots – in the 60s and 70s, led the campaign to deny any platform to ‘anti-fascists’. Some of these left-wing student leaders, incidentally, in later life, turn out to be passionate Zionists – check out the careers of Daniel Cohn-Bendit or British Labour Parliamentarian Mike Gapes. From student Trots to apologists for the policies of Likud. Hmmm.

Like many on the left, I was uneasy at the time about pushes to deny free speech, but didn’t object strongly because it seemed the people and the views we were asked to help silence were, indeed, reprehensible in the extreme.

However, I probably never actually read what they had to say – except in the form of limited extracts and commentary arguing they were beneath contempt.

Well, I’m not a ‘Nazi denier’. For all I know, there may well be people around who fully support the views of Adolf Hitler. I haven't met any, but it's possible.

But contrary to what I used to believe, I now think that even if there are such people, they should be allowed free speech.

Moreover, I now know for sure that some of the people denied a platform for their views because of allegations they are claimed to be Nazi extremists do not merit that caricature.

I also have come to realize that the Zionist movement has succeeded, in part, by a remarkable ability to divide and thus conquer its critics, right wing v left wing, pink v black, Christian v Moslem, Jew v Gentile.

Israel Shamir, whom you so dislike, explicitly seeks to create bridges between anti-Zionists of different complexions and backgrounds. I think it’s a worthy project – and necessary, in the circumstances.

That’s because I’m anti-Zionist. Of course, I understand that others – such as yourself – are pro-Zionist. The real question, I feel, is whether Zionism can exist as a movement without the supremacist tendency to slience and vanquish critics?

I, for one, support free speech for all Zionists.

Is that support reciprocated?

You claim not to be anti-Jewish but your line of thinking, the quote I highlighted below and appreciation of Israel Shamir make your claim suspect. Edgar J. Steele is another author you might enjoy, start with this essay. http://www.nationalvanguard.org/story.php?id=6681

Len, we haven’t met. I’m not sure what right you have to decide which Jews – or non-Jews – I should and shouldn’t like. Perhaps you could share your credentials for the role of moral guardian and intellectual gatekeeper with the rest of us.

I like the work of Israel Shamir and said so. You apparently do not, and argue that my appreciation of his work makes my claim not be 'anti-Jewish' "suspect". You apparently feel you have the right to pick the Jews I should like and the Jews I should not like. If I don't like the same ones you like, I'm anti-Jewish. Interesting argument.

I surmise you would not have complained had I expressed respect for Yitzhak Shamir (no relation), despite his well-known and admitted background as a terrorist.

Am I correct?

If so, perhaps we do share some common ground - we both appear to believe that all God’s children have the potential for redemption. :clapping

QUOTE

There is evidence, however, as our world races headlong towards globalization, that Jewish (and specifically Zionist) conspiratorial networks are increasingly winning out over - or swallowing up - their competitors.

Please provide the evidence to back this assertion.

This discussion is a very small part of that 'evidence'.

Exposure of what’s happening, of course, is a key tool in preventing such an outcome from running its full course.

As Marx argued, we don’t just need to understand the world. We need to change it. I'll add to that, we need to change it for the better.

Part of the task of exposure, in my opinion, is using precise and accurate language and, when necessary, taking the trouble to clarify terms.

That helps more people escape from ‘straw men’ style counter-arguments that have been accepted by too many intelligent people for too long.

You may care to look at the recent Walt and Mearsheimer paper and the ensuing debate – see for instance the following article, quite misleadingly entitled Harvard Takes On the Israel Lobby

They never said “Jews rule the world” – yet you’d easily get that impression from much of the response.

So if you’re going to play the ‘anti-Semite’ card, I consider myself in good company.

I’d rather share a prison cell with Jeff Blankfort than Arlen Specter, although if I had inquisitorial powers, I’d be a lot more interested in interrogating the latter.

Since you live in Australia you might want to join this group

http://www.adelaideinstitute.org/

You do have an interesting bookmarks list. Thanks for the hot tip.

I’ll decline the invitation to get involved in a silly distraction from the main theme of this thread, other than to say that I really do believe in free speech on matters of public interest – mine, yours and Fred Toben’s as well – unlike the Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council.

But this is not the place to discuss free speech.

I trust we can feel sure of it here – at least as long as we also support free speech for our peers and eschew uncivilized and destructive behaviour such as irrelevant postings, poor documentation, unjustified ad hominem attacks and bigotry.

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Guest Stephen Turner

Who, for instance, is John McAdams, what’s his personal history and what really motivates him? Damned if I know. It would be interesting to find out.

try this. Mr Mcadams, in all his glory.

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There exists a old/new dynamic in JFK Research circa 2006, it is a direct result of a cobweb of destroyed documents, an obvious controlled investigation presented before the nation in September 1964 and a resultant pandora's box of theories and unresolved questions, which, it can be argued require someone to have the 'mind of a detective' to separate the 'wheat from the chaff' so to speak. Insofar as it is obvious that there are, and have been from the day's of I.F. Stone to the current Gerald Posner phenomena of 'credible researchers,' at least in the minds of 'the masses' there is the unsettling prospect that 'information about and researchers themselves' [on the assassination of JFK] have added to the problem of 'final resolution even more problematic than it would be even if there weren't millions of pages of classified and de-classified documents to analyze, weigh and sift.

The central aspects of the JFK assassination are arguably far from resolved due to the fact that there is a serious 'lack of definitive information' regarding the two most imporatant individuals involved - Lee Harvey Oswald' and Jack Ruby. The hurculean efforts of serious researchers, has, I believe uncovered a great deal of credible information regarding Oswald's obvious connections to the intelligence community, and much more additional information about the 'real Jack Ruby has also been uncovered which points to 'other areas' outside the traditional portrayal as a 'mob character.'

It is arguably a fact, that unless someone uncovered 'incontrevertible evidence' that 'Communist's or Communist individuals were key players in the assassination of John F. Kennedy, they would be 'laughed to scorn' might we add another category?

The conceptualization of the idea that 'any discovery of factual information which reflects unfavorably on individuals who are of Semitic origin, insofar as pertaining to the assasination of JFK, is automatically due to the fact that the ostensible discoverers of this information are in fact 'anti-Semitic' is a 'less than intellectual approach' to resolving questions regarding same. If that criteria is part of the 'accepted procedure for resolving one of history's most important events, then I suggest we should all pack up and go home.

There is only one 'unforgivable sin' in American culture and that is to be labeled 'anti-Semitic.'

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Im not sure I agree with this last post by Robert. I sometimes speak out at Union Square at the Free Speach Speak Out, which has unfortunately been nearly destroyed by the police, although musicians can blather quite democratically while not being bothered at all by the police.

If anything anti-semitism is "the acceptable racism" out there on the streets. The number of blatantly anti-semetic things people will say before hundreds of people is growing more an more pronounced daily. Much of this stuff derives from simplistic federal reservist pap doled out by Republicans in the Midwest during the Great Depression to take the heat of Wall Street. Whenever one of these anti-semitic speakers gets up, the crowds immediately quadruple.

In the world of publishing, on the other hand I would probably agree with Robert. The fear of being labelled anti-semitic is definitely used to cow critics of the fascist Israeli regime.

What accounts for this huge difference between the street and the academy? Sure its always been there, but never to this extent, in my opinion. One thing that has been pointed out is the lack of middle-brow leftists who can have an impact outside of the academy. In the void of street-level left analysis, anti-semititic websites offer a quick fix of understanding, metabolizing fast like sugar into blood.

Regarding Sid, I dont think Len read his posts very carefully. Nothing wrong with being the devil's advocate, but let's read from the same eyechart.

I agree that it doesnt make sense to view Chomsky as a closet zionist. If he is, its the deepest closet

since Plato's. I think Chomsky is just a structuralist who, in this particular case, has made a mistake in deemphasizing the degree of difference that a specific individual in a particular context could make.

I was myself caught up in this falacy for a long time. I think it came from periodicals of the left, like The Nation, etc.

The logic went something like this:

1. Vietnam, the 80s and 90s have shown that there is no real fundemental differences between the dems

and repubs anyway...therefore Kennedy Assassination people are being naive about Kennedy

representing a thread to the Military Industrial Complex (as it was known in those dark ages)

2. Kennedy had basically ran his 1960 campaign with a fake missile gap "I am more of a Cold Warrier

than thou" message, so what makes anyone think he would have been more inclined toward detente?

3. There are no shortage of Kennedy statements that--taken out of context with his ongoing struggle with

the JCS -- can be read as encouraging a continued US presence in Vietnam. Cockburn quoted these

without thinking about the years historically, or frankly doing his homework and reading seerious

critiques of the WC. (If Chomsky and Cockburn have read these critiques, they certainly give no sign

of it, never directly addressing any of the points made therein.)

"WITHOUT THINKING OF THE YEARS HISTORICALLY"... BY THIS I MEAN....

1. Not realizing that 1960 was not 1990. The CIA was only thirteen years old. Precosious yes, but might

Cockburn and other syndicated leftists (you can count them on one hand) have meen imposting their

sense of an ossified National Security State Establishment on an earlier time when it was a) not yet as ossified as it would later become or B) perhaps as ossified but this state was not yet realized by all players (not just JFK but Ike too.)

2. The degree to which the Cold War media climate virtually necessitated that a president mouth hard

right anti-soviet rhetoric to get elected. This would suggest the possibility of a president being more

open-minded than his public pronouncemnts might suggest.

3. Kennedy's repeated clashes with the JCS and CIA over Laos and Cuba. This culminated with the Cuban

Missile Crisis. I don't think Cockburn or Chomsky have given any thought whatsoever to how the most

perilous two weeks in world history might produce cracks in the National Security State, in the

structural (i.e institutional and not individual) way that they view it. We on this forum know that there

were very serious divisions 1962. But I think these left appologists for the WC have almost entirely

ignored hugely important signs of disagreement between JFK and the CIA-JCS, when they fail to

closely examine the combined impact of the Bay of Pigs Invasion, and the Cuban Missile Crisis.

4. The need to placate the JCS, the CIA and other intelligence outlets with important media ties, helps

us read Kennedy's public pronouncements on Vietnam and Cuba at a deeper level. Chomsky and

Cockburn have not made the time for this.

In many ways I am a "strucutralist" myself. I believe, for example that media policy and media coverage

of foreign policy have a far greater impact than anything a politician like Hilary Rhodam Bush might do. But

in the case of Chomsky and Cockburn on JFK I think "structuralism" has become an excuse for laziness and "talking out their arsseses"

I might know. At one point I was convinced by their arguments.

As for Sid's point about "left gatekeeping", the book The CIA and Culture by Francis Saunders shows that this CIA use of left media to push the public as a whole further right is not mere conjecture, but is in fact part of our history.

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