Thursday, November 21, 2013

Fifty Years In, The Myth Persists

If you weren't already persuaded that Lee Harvey Oswald was not the lone assassin of President John F. Kennedy, this should convince you:

Lee Harvey Oswald was a communist. We know that a leftist, a communist assassinated JFK. That is the official Warren report conclusion. And yet the media cannot let go of the fact that because there were a lot of white Republican businessmen in Dallas, that it was a climate of hate, a climate of fear, a climate of extremism in Dallas that led to Kennedy's death. Every conspiracy theory that you have heard that makes you think Lee Harvey Oswald was not the assassin was started by the Democrats. Every one.

You go back and look at these wacko movies that they made with all the focus in New Orleans and you will find wacko leftist filmmakers who started all of these conspiracy theories.

As it happens, however, Rush Limbaugh is not the only one in possession of The One True Explanation.™ Politico recently asked of Robin McNeil, Jim Lehrer, and Bob Schieffer  "what do you make of the findings of the Warren Commission?"  Here are the responses, of McNeil in full and exerpts of Lehrer and Schieffer:

(McNeil): It satisfied me because I never had the time or the inclination afterward to become an assassination student or an assassination buff. I have yet to see a bit of evidence that convinces me otherwise. I thought the Oliver Stone movie was ridiculous.

(Lehrer): But I didn’t have any theories that replaced the single-man theory, shooter, and for the last 50 years, I’ve been waiting to hear that story that, OK, somebody on their death bed makes a confession that they were Lee Harvey Oswald’s driver or they helped him get the gun or whatever. That’s not happened and 50 years later, I’m pretty well satisfied that, with the absence of any provable information to the contrary, it was true that it was just one guy, Lee Harvey Oswald. And it was just unbelievable, but it happened that one man did it.

(Schieffer): .I always try to keep an open mind as to whether there may have been someone else involved in some other way. There’s no question that Fidel Castro knew that the Kennedy administration were trying to kill him and sabotage things in Cuba, but there’s never been any evidence that has been shown to me that I found conclusive that there might have been anyone other than Oswald involved.

Actually, Jim Lehrer is correct- it is unbelievable that one man did it.  Politico, as has become the norm, queried interviewees about the findings of the Warren Commission, implying that Chief Justice Warren's group has presented the official government finding.  But as Kennedy assassination scholar Bob Katz reminds us

The House Select Committee on Assassinations, headed by Robert Blakey, a former Justice Department prosecutor, was a two-year probe that included hundreds of interviews, the discovery of new evidence, scientific tests on new and old evidence, plus the most extensive review of available FBI, CIA, Secret Service and Warren Commission files. The HSCA final report stated bluntly that President Kennedy "probably was assassinated as a result of a conspiracy."

Didn't know that, huh? Not mentioned in your American history textbook? Well, why would that be?

Rarely (if ever) is anyone asked to comment on the House Select Committee on Investigations, as if the public is to assume that the Warren Commission conducted the official, and only, government investigation. The HCA in 1978 concluded

Scientific Acoustical Evidence Establishes a High Probability That Two Gunmen Fired at President John F. Kennedy; Other Scientific Evidence does not Preclude the Possibility of Two Gunmen Firing at the President; Scientific Evidence Negates Some Specific Conspiracy Allegations.

Perhaps nothing is any more remarkable that, after the Warren Commission- its findings and the committee itself- has been repeatedly debunked over the past half century, its supporters have been given a free pass while the burden of proof has been placed upon conspiracy theorists. The respondent is then expected to summon up a serious demeanor and remark that there has been no evidence presented to suggest a second gunman. And he or she does so without any hint of doubt, suggesting that all evidence has been released and put on public display. But David Talbot, founder of Salon and author, explains

We need the facts – as Jefferson Morley, one of the few journalists to devote serious effort to the Kennedy case, has demonstrated. Morley has been pursuing a lengthy Freedom of Information battle with the CIA to pry loose more than 1,500 documents that the agency is still concealing in defiance of the 1992 JFK Records Act. At long last, we need the government to come clean and provide the American people with what is legally theirs – every piece of classified information relating to the Kennedy assassination. Failing that, if the CIA continues to defy the law, the nation needs another Edward Snowden.

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