Thursday, January 31, 2013

Rendezvous at Dealey Plaza

National Security Council Meeting - 1962 

                                        Rendezvous at Dealey Plaza 

On a Prayer and a Poem – A Storm Coming & Rendezvous With Death at Dealey Plaza

By William Kelly (

On October 5, 1962   President Kennedy's daughter Caroline interrupted a meeting of the National Security Council to read him a poem, while in Dallas, Texas, Lee Harvey Oswald cashed a check from the Leslie Welding Company. 

These two seemingly disparate events, when examined closely, help show how their intentions, decisions and actions would lead to their crossing paths, intersecting at Houston and Elm Streets in Dallas over a year later, and how those who really accomplished what Oswald is credited for, go unidentified, unheralded and unavenged.

James Douglas, in a speech at the Dallas Coalition On Political Assassinations (COPA) annual conference in Dallas (in November 2009), discussed the government policy that makes it possible - the concept of plausible deniability, and he echoed many of the thoughts from his important and increasingly significant book JFK – Why He Died And Why It Matters (2009). (1)

In his talk Douglas mentioned two small but telling incidents about President Kennedy that reflect on his personality and convictions, one a prayer, The Storm Coming, and the other a poem, Rendezvous With Death. [For complete text of speech or to see and hear on Youtube see Note (2).] 

                                                          The Prayer

In his talk James Douglas said:

….Late at night on the June 5, 1961, plane flight back to Washington from his Vienna meeting with Nikita Khrushchev, a weary President Kennedy wrote down on a slip of paper, as he was about to fall asleep, a favorite saying of his from Abraham Lincoln – really a prayer. Presidential secretary Evelyn Lincoln discovered the slip of paper on the floor. On it she read the words: “I know there is a God – and I see a storm coming. If he has a place for me, I believe that I am ready.”

Kennedy loved that prayer. He cited it repeatedly. More important, he made the prayer his own. In his conflicts with Khrushchev, then more profoundly with the CIA and the military, he had seen a storm coming. If God had a place for him, he believed that he was ready.

                                                    The Poem 

For at least a decade, JFK’s favorite poem had been Rendezvous, a celebration of death. Rendezvous was by Alan Seeger, an American poet killed in World War One. The poem was Seeger’s affirmation of his own anticipated death. [For Seeger bio see: (3)]

The refrain of Rendezvous, “I have a rendezvous with Death,” articulated John Kennedy’s deep sense of his own mortality. Kennedy had experienced a continuous rendezvous with death in anticipation of his actual death: from the deaths of his PT boat crew members, from drifting alone in the dark waters of the Pacific Ocean, from the early deaths of his brother Joe and sister Kathleen, and from the recurring near-death experiences of his almost constant illnesses.

He recited Rendezvous to his wife, Jacqueline, in 1953 on their first night home in Hyannis after their honeymoon. She memorized the poem, and recited it back to him over the years. In the fall of 1963, Jackie taught the words of the poem to their five-year-old daughter, Caroline.

I have thought many times about what then took place in the White House Rose Garden one beautiful fall day.

On the morning of October 5, 1963, President Kennedy met with his National Security Council....

Caroline suddenly appeared at her father’s side. She said she wanted to tell him something. He tried to divert her attention while the meeting continued. Caroline persisted. The president smiled and turned his full attention to his daughter. He told her to go ahead. While the members of the National Security Council sat and watched, Caroline looked into her father’s eyes and said:

                                                  I have a rendezvous with Death
                                                  At some disputed barricade,
                                                  When Spring comes back with rustling shade
                                                   And apple-blossoms fill the air –
                                                   I have a rendezvous with Death
                                                  When Spring brings back blue days and fair.
                                                  It may be he shall take my hand
                                                  And lead me into his dark land
                                                  And close my eyes and quench my breath –
                                                  It may be I shall pass him still.
                                                   I have a rendezvous with Death
                                                   On some scarred slope of battered hill,
                                                  When Spring comes round again this year
                                                  And the first meadow-flowers appear.
                                                  God knows ‘twere better to be deep
                                                  Pillowed in silk and scented down,
                                                  Where love throbs out in blissful sleep,
                                                   Pulse nigh to pulse, and breath to breath,
                                                   Where hushed awakenings are dear….
                                                   But I’ve a rendezvous with Death
                                                   At midnight in some flaming town,
                                                  When Spring trips north again this year,
                                                   And I to my pledged word am true,
                                                   I shall not fail that rendezvous.

After Caroline said the poem’s final word, “rendezvous,” Kennedy’s national security advisers sat in stunned silence. One of them said later the bond between father and daughter was so deep “it was as if there was ‘an inner music’ he was trying to teach her.”

JFK had heard his own acceptance of death from the lips of his daughter. While surrounded by a National Security Council that opposed his breakthrough to peace, the president once again deepened his pledge not to fail that rendezvous. If God had a place for him, he believed that he was ready.

So how can the why of his murder give us hope?….asks Douglas, and it is up to us to answer that question.

The official public record, the White House Diary for October 5, 1962 does not even reflect that that meeting took place, but it most certainly did, and the primary topic of conversation was most certainly Cuba, in particular Clare Booth Luce’s critical commentary that appeared in the issue of Life Magazine that was released that day. (4).

The gathering storm that was surely coming was clearly centered around Cuba, but the Cuban Missile Crisis, as it would become known, and take the world to the brink of nuclear destruction, had yet to acquire a name. In the days and weeks that followed however, the President’s faith and powers would be tested to the max.(5).

That same day, October 5, 1962, a chart was prepared of reconnaissance targets in Cuba for the CIA’s U2s to photograph (6.), for analysis by the National Photo Interpretation Center (NPIC) after the resumption of flights, as discussed that same day by CIA director John McCone and National Security Advisor McGeorge Bundy. (7.)

It’s possible Oswald or someone he worked with placed the arrows and captions on those charts.

After the Bay of Pigs, which brought fiasco into the popular vernacular, the Cuban Missile Crisis was the second major crisis of the Kennedy administration, and a critical buildup to the June 10, 1963 “Peace Speech” at American University, when Kennedy laid out his plans for a peaceful future for all man, but one that was not to be allowed to happen. 

Kennedy met his fate on Friday, November 22, 1963 at 12:30 pm, just after high noon on a Dealey Plaza, Dallas, Texas street, reportedly gunned down by lone sniper, later, and falsely identified as Lee Harvey Oswald.

There is still an x marked today at the spot on the street where the lives of President John F. Kennedy and his reputed assassin Harvey Oswald came together, intersecting at a very specific time and place, and it is only from an examination of their lives is it possible to really understand how and why Dealey Plaza happened.

Of course, if Lee Harvey Oswald was a psychotic madman, a homicidal maniac spree killer who acted spontaneously and without meaning or motive, none of it would make sense. There would be no connection whatsoever between the two now historic lines that were left in the wake of their lives, other than they coincidently intersected at that time and place.

Was the rendezvous at Dealey Plaza a chance, spontaneous, tragic, coincendental  accident of history, or was it planned to happen in advance? Was the President killed by a Texas Yahoo nutcase, giving his death no meaning or cause, or was he the victim of a conspiracy that makes him a martyr? 

End Part I
1) JFK & the Unspeakable – Why He Died And Why It Matters (2009)  

2) Complete text of James Douglas’ Dallas COPA speech

Seeger was born in New York to parents from old New England families. Seeger’s family lived on Staten Island for ten years of his life before moving to Mexico in 1900. He lived in Mexico at an impressionable age and this had a decisive impact on his poetry
At age fourteen he returned to New York for education at the Hackley School in Tarrytown. He then went to Harvard College in 1906. He became one of the editors of Harvard Monthly and contributed verse regularly.

From 1910 to 1912 he lived aimlessly in New York before moving to Paris. He became very fond of Paris and, just after the outbreak of the World War One, he enlisted in the French Foreign Legion. He served in the trenches on the western front and enjoyed the time on sentry duty for quiet contemplation. During the Battle of the Somme he was severely wounded when advancing on the German lines. He died shortly afterwards and was posthumously awarded the Croix de Guerre and the Medaille Militaire.

Allen Seeger reading his poem Rendezvous

6) October 5, 1962 Chart of NPIC U2 Reconnaissance Objectives in Cuba

7) Cuban Missle Crisis Memorandum of Discussion With the President’s Special Assistant for National Security Affairs (Bundy) on October 5, 1962
Washington, October 5, 1962, 5:15 p.m.

1. McCone reviewed details of the Donovan negotiations, discussions with the President, Attorney General, Eisenhower, the decisions not to approach Congressional leadership, the discussion with Senator Javits, and the final report from Donovan. Bundy expressed general agreement.

2. At the October 4th meeting of the Special Group Mongoose (1)   was discussed in some detail as was the meeting with Carter, Lansdale, et al. in DCI’s office on that day. McCone stated there was a feeling in CIA and Defense that the “activist policy” which founded the Mongoose operation was gone and that while no specific operational activities had been (refused) the amount of “noise”from minor incidents such as the sugar, the students firing on the Havana Hotel and other matters and the extreme caution expressed by State had led to this conclusion. More importantly, however, the decisions to restrict U-2 flights had placed the United States Intelligence Community in a position where it could not report with assurance the development of offensive capabilities in Cuba. McCone stated he felt it most probable that Soviet-Castro operations would end up with an established offensive capability in Cuba including MRBMs. McCone stated he thought this a probability rather than a mere possibility. Bundy took issue stating that he felt the Soviets would not go that far, that he was satisfied that no offensive capability would be installed in Cuba because of its world-wide effects and therefore seemed relaxed over the fact that the Intelligence Community cannot produce hard information on this important subject. McCone said that Bundy’s viewpoint was reflected by many in the Intelligence Community, perhaps a majority, but he just did not agree and furthermore did not think the United States could afford to take such a risk.

3. Bundy then philosophized on Cuba stating that he felt that our policy was not clear, our objectives not determined and therefore our efforts were not productive. He discussed both the Mongoose operations and the Rostow “Track Two”.(2)   Bundy was not critical of either or of the Lansdale operations. It was obvious that he was not in sympathy with a more active role such as those discussed at 5412 on Thursday(3)   as he felt none of them would bring Castro down nor would they particularly enhance U.S. position of world leadership. Bundy seemed inclined to support the Track Two idea and also inclined (though he was not specific) to play down the more active Lansdale operation. Bundy had not talked to Lansdale but obviously had received some of the “static” that is being passed around in Washington. (Before) McCone in reporting on the discussions at Thursday’s 5412 meeting repeated the views of the President and expressed by the Attorney General it was agreed that the whole Government policy with reference to Cuba must be resolved promptly as basic to further actions on our part. In general, Bundy’s views were that we should either make a judgment that we would have to go in militarily (which seemed to him intolerable) or alternatively we would have to learn to live with Castro, and his Cuba and adjust our policies accordingly…..

                                              Rendezvous At Dealey Plaza 

Rendezvous With Death At Dealey Plaza –  Part II

On October 5, 1962, the morning that Caroline Kennedy recited the poem “Rendezvous  With Death” to her father at the National Security Council meeting in the Rose Garden, Lee Harvey Oswald cashed a pay check from Leslie Welding Company, where he had worked since July 19 but had quit and got a better job at a graphics arts firm.

One of Oswald’s first acts upon arrival in Fort Worth in June 1962 was to go to the Texas Employment Commission and look for work, but he got more than a job from Virginia Hale and Anna Laurie Smith. Virginia Hale got Oswald the sheet metal worker job at Leslie Welding, but while he was at the Texas Employment Commission Oswald asked if they knew of anyone who spoke the Russian language that he and his wife could meet.

In his article (Oswald’s Handlers) Bill Simpich writes: “Anna Laurie Smith said that she referred him to Peter Gregory, and ‘Mrs. Hall’ from the next desk, suggested Mrs. Max Clark and provided her name. This Mrs. Hall was Elena Hall, a Russian immigrant who was also part of the White Russian community …. Mrs. Elena Hall gave the names of Max and Gali Clark to Oswald at the Texas Employment Center and then went to work as a dental lab technician.”

The first person Oswald called was Gali Clark, an excellent Russian speaker, a former “Russian princess” who Simpich notes “made a point of shopping for the Oswald family and providing material support, bringing groceries to Marina at the Hall residence while Elena Hall recovered from a car accident.” In addition however, “Mrs. Hall took Marina and her baby in to live at her place during the first week of October, bought her some clothes and groceries, and had Marina’s teeth fixed with the financial help of George Bouhe….” And Elena Hall, who went from the Texas Employment Commission to work at the dental lab.

So besides getting Oswald a job, the one stop at the Texas Employment Commission got Marina and the baby a nice place to stay, and they had Marina’s teeth fixed and the Russian community bought them groceries and gave them financial help, especially George Bouhe.  

But being employed as a laborer was not something Oswald enjoyed or wanted to do and he told Gali Clark’s husband Max Clark that he hated his work at Leslie Welding and wanted another line of work. Max Clark was an attorney and industrial security supervisor at General Dynamics who knew the FBI agent who later investigated him. Clark referred to his interviewing agent Earl Haley as “Earl”, and told the Warren Commission that he was familiar with Haley and the FBI from working with them at General Dynamics. Clark was an industrial security supervisor at the Convair wing of General Dynamics, who had the Air Force contract for the first funded ICBM study.

Max Clark also had a “covert security approval” by the CIA for “Project ROCK/IDIO/SGAPEX”.

According to DeMohrenschildt, Max Clark told him he checked with his friends in the FBI and that Oswald was okay. George DeMohrenschildt testified to the Warren Commission that during one of his conversation with his Dallas CIA contact J. Walton Moore, and Moore assured him that Oswald was a “harmless lunatic”. 

After he told Max Clark he didn’t like the Leslie Welding job Oswald started skipping work altogether, though they still took him back even after he missed a few days. His boss said that he was going to be trained in more specialized work, and his last Leslie Welding punch card had “Quit” written on it, so he wasn’t fired from that job. The job lasted from July 19 until October 8, quite a stretch Oswald.

About Oswald’s work at Leslie Welding, A. J. Weberman wrote: 

In a February 3, 1964, Memorandum to Files, a CIA component, presumably the Office of Security, stated: “The following notation appears on the cover of OSWALD’S address book: “Mr. Bargas 200 E.N. Vacey Louv – K P1316 (The FBI memorandum does not suggest it, but I would think that Louv – K might possibly refer to Louisville, Kentucky.) The Office of Security of the CIA came up with three spurious Bargas’ from its files. [CIA 1300-479] “Bargas” was the name of OSWALD’S foreman at Louv-R-Pac, Thomas Bargas. Tom Bargas was interviewed in 1977 and asked if he saw Oswald every day he worked there? He said: “Yeah, I did see him every day. He was a sheet metal worker, we used to make ventilators. We never had any Government contracts or anything. It was all commercial buildings. Oswald always kept to himself – he wore the same old jacket.” In May 1993 Tom Bargas said Oswald never expressed any political opinions to him and was a good worker. “He was a general flunky – he did everything we put him to do. Because he comprehended so well, I was going to teach him to do layout work. Then he quit. No reason…He came in every day. He worked there two, three months, maybe longer. He didn’t miss any days that I know of…I never miss work. We went in at 7:00 a.m. and got off at 3:30 p.m.” [WCD 7; FBI DL 89-43 p360 - 1 RPG:mja - UnID; CIA 1300-479]

While Elena Hall was recouperating from a car crash, Lee and Marina had her house all to themselves, and one night had the Clarks over for dinner to thank them for their hospitality. This is when Clark extensively questioned Oswald about his experiences in the Soviet Union, what amounted to what Simpich calls a “debriefing.”  

Max Clark’s file states that he “worked closely” with I. B. Hale, the husband of Virginia Hale, who got Oswald the job at Leslie Welding. A former FBI agent who was the chief of industrial security at General Dynamics I.B. Hale and his wife Virginia separated in 1960, with twin sons Bobby and Billy staying with I.B. and son Thomas staying with Virginia. 

But two weeks after I.B. Hale’s wife Virginia got Oswald a job, in August 1962, their sons traveled across state lines in order to break-in at the apartment of Judith Campbell (Exner), who was on an intimate basis with President John F. Kennedy as well as Mafia chieftains Sam Giancana and Johnny Rosselli.  The break in at Campbell’s apartment was done in full view of an FBI stakeout team who checked out the Texas tags on the burglar’s car and recognized the sons of the Texas state football star and former FBI agent I. B. Hale.

As Simpich reasonably concludes, it seems that Hale and his sons “got caught up in a dramatic series of events that appear to have been designed to blackmail the Kennedy Administration into approving General Dynamics as the prime contactor over Boeing to build the TFX F-111 bomber at their Fort Worth plant. At the time this 7 billion dollar contract was the largest military contract in history.” In addition, one of the Hale boys had run off with the daughter of Texas Governor John Connally, and killed her by accident, or so the official reports concluded.

So in early October, 1962, Oswald was still working at the job at Leslie Welding, Marina was staying at Mrs. Halls while she recovered from an auto accident, and the other Russians give them food and financial assistance. But no one seemed to know where Oswald was staying. He didn’t stay at the Halls with Marina, and only stayed a few days at the YMCA, but there’s no record of where he stayed for weeks at a time during this period. The FBI even went back to interview every one of the White Russians Oswald met at this time and asked them one question, – do they know where Oswald was staying in October to early November, 1962? And every one said no.

According to Weberman, “Oswald checked out of the YMCA on October 19, 1962, and from October 19, 1962 to November 2, 1962, his address was a mystery to the Warren Commission. The Warren Report noted: “After Oswald left the YMCA on October 19, 1962, he moved to a room or apartment somewhere in Dallas which has not been located. It seems likely that during that time he spent several weekends with Marina at the Hall house.” 

On October 9, 1962, Oswald went back to the offices of the Texas Employment Commission and asked to see Helen Cunningham, a counselor with the commission who he had been referred by Teofil Miller. Miller had been to a dinner party with the Oswalds learned of his search for a job, and had called Mrs. Cunningham, a friend of his, and asked her to help Oswald get a job more suited to his skills and background.

After skipping out on the Leslie Welding job, without notice, Oswald was still owed two pay checks for the last days he had worked, and the frugal Oswald wanted the money but didn’t want to have to go back to pick it up in person. So on October 9, 1962, the same day he put in for a new job with Mrs. Cunningham at the ever helpful Texas Employment Commission, Oswald walked into the Main Post Office in Dallas and ordered a post office box. He paid less than $5, used his real name Lee Harvey Oswald [See: Receipt for PO Box MFA] and as a residence he gave the Dallas address of DeMohrenschildt’s daughter Alexandria and her husband Gary Taylor.

[BK Note: Mary Ferrell asks “Is this his first act of deception?,” but I don’t think so, it was not an act of deception if he asked Gary Taylor if he could use his address to take out the PO box and as an address to give J/C/S, which also had Taylor’s address as Oswald’s address until he took out the PO box. So ,no there was no first act of deception in using Taylor’s address here.]

Oswald was given P.O. Box 2915 and either one or two keys [See: Reference 1 and Receipt 2]. He then contacted Leslie Welding and asked them to send his final pay checks to that PO Box.

When Oswald endorsed his last two checks from Louv-R-Pac, he used the address of Gary Taylor. Although he never stayed there, Taylor had given Oswald permission to use his address and he did so on his Post Office box application and at Jaggers/Chiles/Stoval, his next job.

According to A. J. Weberman: Some of the signatures on the back of the Louv-R-Pac paychecks were not OSWALD’S. The FBI Laboratory examined the endorsements and compared them against the signature on OSWALD’S passport. They did not match, although Oswald had used his passport as identification to cash these checks, and his passport number was written on each one. The FBI stated: “Under date of December 5, 1963, the FBI Laboratory advised that the handprinting and handwriting of LEE HARVEY OSWALD, available in Bureau files, have been searched (Deleted) without effecting an identification.”…The HSCA examined 63 specimens of OSWALD’S signature, but none of the signatures on the Louv-R-Pac paychecks, although their existence had been brought to the attention of the HSCA by this researcher. The HSCA chose instead to examine: “A letter dated July 13, 1962, to Leslie Welding Co. signed LEE H. OSWALD; written on part of the page from a yellow legal pad. Blue ink. Ball point pen. Location: Archives.” [HSCA V8 p230]

George DeMohrenschildt had promised Oswald he would try to get him a good job that he would like, and through Teofil Miller and Mrs. Cunningham, that turned out to be at the Jaggers/Chiles/Stoval, a graphic arts firm.

Besides doing most of the advertising and commercial graphics for Dallas businesses, J/C/S also did classified work for the U.S. Army Map Service, placing numbers, names and captions on photographs, including high altitude photos taken by the U2 over Russia and Cuba.

A fellow employee, Dennis Ofstbin recalled that when they placed the names of some cities in Russia on a map, Oswald said he had been there.

During the Cuban Missile Crisis, in October, 1962, when no one knew where Oswald was living, he was working at a company that placed arrows and captions on photos taken by the U2 over Cuba, and J/C/S workers, including Oswald, may have placed the arrows and captions on the very props that were used to brief the President, and the President used to brief Congress and the UN during the crisis.

It was while working at J/C/S that Oswald wrote the word “microdot” in his notebook, and it was while working at J/C/S when Oswald is said to have had the opportunity to produce the multiple faked IDs and documents, some of which included the use of the alias A. J. Hidell.

It was at a party of DeMohrenchildt’s friends who worked at Magnolia Oil Co. in February 1963 when Oswald and his wife Marina met Ruth Paine and Volkmar Schmidt.
Just as Simpich describes how George Bouhe handed responsibility for Oswald over to George DeMohrenschildt in the fall of 1962, DeMohrenschildt was handing the Oswalds over to Ruth and Michael Paine, who would play increasingly central roles in the coincidences that would lead up to the Rendezvous at Dealey Plaza.

While Ruth and Marina bonded at the party, Oswald talked to Volkmar Schmidt, a German who worked at Magnolia Oil with most of the other people at the party. In their long conversation, Schmidt talked with Oswald about the Valkyrie plot to kill Hitler, and suggested that the same should be done to other fascists, like Army General Edwin Walker.

[See: Interview with Volkmar Schmidt –

Within a few weeks of his conversation with Schmidt, Oswald ordered a rifle from an advertisement in a gun magazine, sending a money order as payment and having the rifle sent to A.J. Hidell, P.O. Box 2915, Dallas, Texas. He had previously, in early January, ordered a .38 revolver, and though ordered a month apart, they were both shipped the same day, March 20, 1963, to Oswald’s PO box.

What’s odd is that Hidell wasn’t authorized to receive mail at that PO box and no one who works at the post office recalls Oswald retrieving the packages that contained the pistol or the package with a rifle and scope. And the receipt is missing, said to have been routinely destroyed when the box was closed, although such records are normally kept and Post Office regulations require them to be kept for two years. Another odd thing is that Oswald would have had to pick up the package that was sent to A. J. Hidell, and would ostensibly need Hidell’s identification to pick up the package, which was sent to a P.O. Box that belonged to Oswald, not Hidell.

The Warren Commission maintains that Oswald mailed the money order for the rifle, postmarked March 12, and reportedly picked it up on March 25, both Tuesdays when Oswald was supposed to be at work at Jaggers/Chiles/Stoval.

Unlike his job at the TSBD, where they didn’t have a Time Card to punch in, J/C/S was pretty serious about keeping track of what they’re employees were doing and for whom.

Also please note that on the morning that Oswald was supposed to have mailed the money order for the rifle, he worked on a job for Sam Bloom, the same guy who helped John Connally and the Secret Service choose the Trade Mart over the Women’s building and thus have the motorcade drive by the TSBD.

March 25. When Oswald was supposed to pick up the rifle and pistol:

Usually it is Conspiracy Theorists who accuse witnesses like Harry Holmes, who also delayed Oswald leaving the DPD long enough for Ruby to get into position to kill him, of lying. Holmes knew the PO regulation was to maintain such records for two years, and he keeps saying “They” did this and “They” did that. Who’s “They.” And what happened to the person who handed the rifle over the counter to Oswald/Hidell? They don’t have Post Officer records who tell them who was working that day?  

Using a background construction site and the fact that Oswald worked six days a week at J/C/S, the official investigators concluded that Oswald took the photos of Walker’s house and neighborhood on a Sunday, before he ordered the rifle.

But instead of using the same logic to determine when he ordered and picked up the weapons from the Post Office, we are advised by the author of the official Chronology not to trust the Time Sheets of J/C/S because Oswald “lied” on them. But they didn’t ask Stovall if he allowed his employees to leave the premises and run around Dallas mailing money orders and picking up weapons at the Post Office.

Chronology of Oswald in 1962-3 IN THE UNITED STATES
12 March 1963 (Tuesday)

Using a coupon clipped from the February issue of American Rifleman magazine, Lee went to the main post office and ordered a high-powered Italian carbine, called a Mannlicher-Carcano, from Klein’s Sporting Goods Company, a mail order house in Chicago. He sent the coupon air mail with a postal money order for $21.78 for the rifle, $7.17 for the scope, to be moounted by a gunsmith employed by Klein’s and $1.50 for postage and handling). The rifle was delivered to an “A. HIDELL, Post Office Box 2915, Dallas, Texas.”

(FN: Oswald’s time sheet on 12 March is evidence that he probably lied sometimes about his hours. On the day he ordered the rifle, he signed in from 8:00 a.m. to 5:15 p.m., (Exhibit no. 1855, Vol. 23, p. 605). The U.S. Postal Inspector, Dallas, Harry D. Holmes, later testified that OSWALD’S order for the rifle was issued “early on the morning of March 12″. This appears to have been the case, for the order was imprinted on Klein’s cash register March 13. Since the post office window opened only at 8:00 a.m., OSWALD probably lied when he signed in then. Thus the time sheets have to be used with caution. M&L….”

But instead of Oswald lying on his time sheets, could Oswald have left the premises and if he wrote “Sam Bloom” on the account sheet, could he have run copy or graphics over to the Bloom office for approval during the half hour- hour time that he said he worked on their project?

That would get Oswald out of the building and in a position to mail the money order and or pick up the weapons. But it would also put Oswald in contact with people at Sam Bloom, the company owned by the man who, a year later, would help arrange for the President’s motorcade to ride past the Texas School Book Depository, a key element in the string of coincidences that led up to the Rendezvous With Death At Dealey Plaza.

[BK Note: Checking with Vincent Bugliosi, who wrote 2,000 pages of Reclaiming History on how Oswald killed JFK all by himself, you would think he would have devoted a few pages to how Oswald obtained the rifle, but without any witnesses, documents, records or any evidence Oswald actually did so, the Bug simply ignores all this and sums it all up in writing: “By coincidence, both weapons, pistol and carbine, were shipped to him on the same day a little over a week later, on March 20. Marina noticed the rifle several days later in Lee’s ‘office.’ He later draped a coat over it for concealment.”]

How come there isn’t one post office employee or witness who remembers handing a rifle and pistol over the counter to Oswald, and with the pistol, if it was collect on delivery, Oswald had to hand money over for it, and nobody can recall this interaction with the most famous assassin on the planet?

Monday, January 21, 2013

MLK on Non-Violence and Political Assassination

Martin Luther King, Jr. on Non-Violence and Political Assassination -  By William Kelly

Today January 21, 2013 is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, a national holiday and inauguration day, when Barrack Obama, the first black president is sworn in for a second term using Martin Luther King, Jr.’s bible. In addition, for his invocation, Obama has chosen not a preacher, not a lawyer, but the widow of the assassinated civil rights leader Medgar Evers.

Evers was shot by Brian DeBeckwith with a high powered rifle in front of his Mississippi home in 1963, but DeBeckwith was acquitted by an all white jury, and only later convicted decades later because of the tireless efforts of his widow and the courageous  prosecution by an assistant district attorney. If Evers’ assassination was properly prosecuted immediately, it is my belief that President Kennedy would not have been killed the way he was, by a similar sniper in a southern city.

Before he was killed in Memphis King was the victim of an assassination attempt in New York City where he was attacked by a women with a knife when signing copies of his first book. While he was in intensive care in the hospital, the New York Times reported that the knife almost severed his main artery, in which case he would have died if he had sneezed. In Memphis on the stormy night before his own assassination, King gave his last speech in which he recounted recuperating from the knife wound in the hospital and receiving many letters of support from the president, the governor of New York and others, the contents of which he forgot, but he didn’t forget the letter from a 9th grade white girl from White Plaines, NY high school,  who wrote simply that she was glad he didn’t sneeze.

As Glen Klotz notes in his @ the Beach blog, King’s radicalization can be traced back to his time at Crozier College in Philadelphia,

Indeed, it was while at Crozier on Sunday, June 10, 1950 when King and three friends visited Mary’s CafĂ© in Maple Shade, in Camden County, New Jersey, and were refused service by a gun wielding bar owner. They filed charges against him, King’s first known reaction to blatant racism and the moment that he is said to have decided to devote his life to the cause of civil rights, not just the civil rights of blacks but the civil rights of all people. See:

Klotz, who writes from the Absecon Island (Atlantic City) Downbeach town of Margate, would be interested to know that King’s most well know speech, “I Had a Dream,” was co-authored by Clarence Jones.

Jones, an influential civil rights lawyer and close aide and associate of Martin Luther King, Jr., wrote a book “Behind the Dream,” the story of King’s famous March on Washington speech at Lincoln Memorial in the summer of 1963. Besides preparing the notes for the speech, and ensuring it was copyrighted, Jones stood by King when the speech was delivered, and his book tells the story of how it all came about.

Now a scholar in residence at the MLK Center at Stanford University, Jones has recently done some radio interviews with BBC and National Public Radio in which he recounts some of what is in the book. Most interesting is the background of Clarence Jones himself.Born in Philadelphia, Jones’ parents were live-in domestic servants in an apparently well to do Philadelphia home, so young Jones was sent off to a Catholic boarding school where most of the students were orphans, educated by Irish nuns who Jones credits with teaching him how to write well.

One summer however, while visiting his parents at the summer home of their employer in Longport, NJ, the upper crust Downbeach town next to Margate, young Jones went for a bike ride, only to be intercepted by some young white boys who harassed him, calling him “nigger,” “honkey,” “boogaloo,” “monkey,” and things that he had never been confronted with before.

When his mother found him crying, and he told her why, she made him look in a mirror and asked what he saw – telling him “you are the most beautiful thing in God’s creation,” and such taunting no longer affected him as it did that day in Longport.

Having been educated so well by the Irish nuns, Jones attended Columbia University and after being drafted and given an undesirable discharge for refusing to sign an anti-Communist loyalty oath, he studied law and became a lawyer. Moving to California, one day in 1960 Martin Luther King visited him at home, and tried to persuade him to assist him in defending against a trumped up tax evasion case, but Jones turned him down because his wife was pregnant and he didn’t want to move back east. After being berated by his wife however, Jones attended the church service where King gave the sermon on the subject of the responsibilities of black professionals to assist other less fortunate blacks, after which Jones joined King’s legal team.

To hear the NPR interview with Clarence Jones, or read the transcript:  Clarence Jones is now in residence at Stanford MLK Center:

Without success, at least so far, I have tried to find out the name and current whereabouts of the young 9th grade girl from White Planes high school who wrote to King to say she is glad he didn’t sneeze, but I did correspond via email with Clarence Jones, who said that the name of the family whose Longport home his mother worked as a housekeeper was Lippincott, a Quaker family who owned the Chalfonte-Haddon Hall (Now Resorts).

With some effort, I did find a partial transcript of the speech King gave at Cape May, but have yet to learn if there is an existing audiotape or film of the event.
In 1958, before he became a national spokesman for civil rights. King visited Cape May, where he gave a speech to a convention of Quaker Friends on the topic of Non-Violence and Racial Justice.  

At a time when blacks were beginning to break segregation laws that called for separate schools, rest rooms and water fountains, and prevented blacks from sitting in the front of the bus or at the lunch counter, King called for non-violence resistance, and not to resort to violence. He called for everyone to love those enemies who espoused hate, and to “fulfill the dreams of our democracy.”

Although the call for non-violence resistance went unheeded with the violent response to the Birmingham bombing, the murders of white civil rights workers and the assassinations of Medgar Evers, John F. Kennedy, Malcolm X, Martin Luther King, Jr. and Robert F. Kennedy, King’s Cape May speech is powerful and moving and indicates the synthesis of his thoughts and ideas that were later personified in his later work and more recognized sermons and speeches.

While I have yet to find any news reports of King’s visit to Cape May, to learn where the Convention was held, if he stayed overnight and if so where, and have not found a film or audio tape of the speech, I did find a partial transcript of it in the Friends Journal of July 26, 1958.

It should also be noted that on June 28-July 5, 2008, the annual Gathering of Friends met in Johnstown, Pa to celebrate the 50th anniversary of MLK’s address Nonviolence and Racial Justice to Friends at Cape May, NJ in 1958.

Non violence and Racial Justice

It is impossible to look out into the wide arena of American life without noticing a real crisis in race relations. This crisis has been precipitated, on the one hand, by the determined resistance of reactionary elements in the South to the Supreme Court's decision outlawing segregation in the public schools.

This resistance has often risen to ominous proportions. Many states have risen up in open defiance. The legislative halls of the South ring loud with such words as "interposition" and "nullification." The Ku Klux Klan is on the march again and that other so-called Respectable White Citizens' Councils.  Both of these organizations have as their basic aim to defeat and stand in the way of the implementation of the Supreme Court's decision on desegregation. They are determined to preserve segregation at any cost. So all of these forces have conjoined to make for massive resistance.

But interestingly enough, the crisis has been precipitated, on the other hand, by radical change in the Negro's evaluation of himself. There would be no crisis in race relations if the Negro continued to think of himself in inferior terms and patiently accepted injustice and exploitation. But it is at this very point that the change has come. 

Something happened to the Negro. Circumstances made it possible and necessary for him to travel more; with the coming of the automobile, the upheavals of two world wars, and a great depression, his rural plantation background gradually gave way to urban  industrial life. His cultural life was gradually rising through the steady decline of crippling illiteracy. And even his economic life was rising through the growth of industry and other influences. Negro masses all over began to re-evaluate themselves, and the Negro came to feel that he was somebody. His religion revealed to him that God loves all of His children and that all men are made in His image. And so he came to see that the important thing about a man is not his specificity but his fundamentum, not the texture of his hair or the color of his skin but the texture and quality of his soul.

Since the struggle for freedom and human dignity will continue, the question is this: How will the struggle for racial justice be waged?  What are the forces that will be at work?

What is the method that will be used?  What will the oppressed peoples of the world do in this struggle to achieve racial justice?

There are several answers to this question, but I would like to deal with only two. One is that the oppressed peoples of the earth can resort to the all-too-prevalent method of physical violence and corroding hatred.  We all know this method; we're familiar with it. It is something of the inseparable twin of Western materialism. It has even become the hallmark of its Grandeur.

Now I cannot say that violence never wins any victories; it occasionally wins victories.  Nations often receive their independence through the use of violence. But violence only achieves temporary victory; it never can achieve ultimate peace. It creates many more social problems than it solves. And violence ends up defeating itself. Therefore it is my firm conviction that if the Negro succumbs to the temptation of using violence in his struggle for justice, unborn generations will be the recipients of a long and desolate night of bitterness.  And our chief legacy to the future will be an endless reign of meaningless chaos.

The other method that is open to oppressed people as they struggle for racial justice is the method of nonviolent resistance, made famous in our generation by Mohandas K. Gandhi of India, who used it effectively to free his people from political domination, the economic exploitation, and humiliation inflicted upon them by Britain. There are several things we can say about this method.  First, it is not a method of cowardice, of stagnant passivity; it does resist. The nonviolent resister is just as opposed to the evil that he is resisting as the violent resister.

He resists evil, but he resists it without violence. This method is strongly active. It is true that it is passive in the sense that the nonviolent resister is never physically aggressive toward the opponent, but the mind is always active, constantly seeking to persuade the opponent that he is wrong.

This method does not seek to defeat and humiliate the opponent but to win his friendship and understanding. Occasionally, the nonviolent resister will engage in boycotts and
noncooperation. But noncooperation and boycotts are not ends within themselves; they are merely a means to awaken a sense of shame within the oppressor and to awaken his dozing conscience. The end is redemption; the end is reconciliation. And so the aftermath of nonviolence is the creation of the beloved community, while the aftermath of violence is bitterness. The method of nonviolence is directed  at the forces of evil rather than at  the individuals caught in the forces of evil. The nonviolent resister seeks to defeat evil systems rather than individuals who are victimized by the evil systems.

The nonviolent resister accepts suffering without retaliation. He willingly accepts suffering. The nonviolent resister realizes that unearned suffering is redemptive; he is willing to receive violence, but he never goes out as a perpetrator of violence. He comes to see that suffering does something to the sufferer as well as the inflictor of the suffering.

Somehow the Negro must come to the point that he can say to his white brothers who would use violence to prevent integration, "We will match your capacity to inflict suffering by our capacity to endure suffering. We will meet your physical force with soul force. We will not hate you, but we cannot in all good conscience obey your unjust laws.  Do to us what you may, and we will still love you. Bomb our homes and spit upon our children, and we will still love you. 

Send your hooded perpetrators of violence into our communities after midnight hours, and take us out on some wayside road, and beat us and leave us half dead, and we will still love you.  Go all over the nation with your propaganda and make it appear that we are not fit morally or culturally or otherwise for integration, and we will still love you.  But we will wear you down by our capacity to suffer, and one day we will win our freedom, and we will not only win freedom for ourselves. We will so appeal to your heart and your conscience that we will win you in the process, and therefore our victory will be a double victory."

That is another basic thing about nonviolent resistance. The nonviolent resister not only avoids external physical violence, but he avoids internal violence of spirit. He not only refuses to shoot his opponent, but he refuses to hate him. The oppressed people of the world must not succumb to the temptation of becoming bitter or indulging in hate campaigns. We must somehow come to see that this leads us only deeper and deeper into the mire; to return hate for hate does nothing but intensify the existence of hate and evil in the universe.

So somehow people in this universe must have sense enough and morality enough to return love for hate.

Now when I speak of love, I am not talking about some sentimental affectionate emotion.
I'm talking about something much deeper. In the Greek language there are three words for love. The Greek, for instance, talks about Eros, a sort of aesthetic love. Plato talks about it a great deal in his dialogues, a yearning of the soul for the realm of the divine. It has come to us as romantic love. Therefore we know about Eros. We have lived with Eros.

And the Greek language talks about philia, which is also a type of love we have experienced. It is an intimate affection between personal friends; it's a reciprocal love.  On this level we love because we are loved; we love people because we like them, we have things in common.  And so we all experience this type of love.

Then the Greek language comes out with another word for love; it calls it agape, creative, understanding, redemptive good will for all men. It is a spontaneous love which seeks nothing in return; it's an overflowing love. Theologians would say that it is the love of God working in the lives of men. When we rise to love on this level, we love men not because we like them, not because their ways appeal to us; we love them because God loves them. We come to the point that we love the person who does the evil deed while hating the deed the person does. And I believe that this is what Jesus meant when
He said, "Love your enemies."

The nonviolent resister has faith in the future.  He somehow believes that the universe is on the side of justice. So he goes about his way, struggling for man's humanity to man, struggling for justice, for the triumph of love, because of this faith in the future and this assurance that he has cosmic companionship as he struggles.

Call it what you may, whether it is Being Itself, with Paul Tillich, or the Principle of Concretion with Whitehead, or whether it is a Process of Integration with Wieman, or whether it is a sort of impersonal Brahman with Hinduism, or whether it is a personal God with boundless power and infinite love, there is something in this universe that works in every moment to bring the disconnected aspects of reality into a harmonious whole. There is a power that seeks to bring low prodigious hilltops of evil and pull down gigantic mountings of injustice, and this is the faith, this is the hope that can keep us going amid the tension and the darkness of any moment of social transition. We come to see that the dark of the moral universe is long but it bends toward justice. This is the faith and the hope that will keep us going.

The nonviolent resister sees within the universe something at the core and the heartbeat of the moral cosmos that makes for togetherness. There is something in this universe which justifies James Russell Lowell in saying,

Truth forever on the scaffold, Wrong forever on the throne.
Yet that scaffold sways the future, and behind the dim unknown
Standeth God within the shadow, keeping watch above his own.

So down in Montgomery, Alabama, we can walk and never get weary, because we know there is a great camp meeting in the promised land of freedom and justice.

The problem of race is certainly the chief moral dilemma of our nation. We are faced now with the tremendous responsibility of solving this problem before it is too late. The state of the world today does not permit us the luxury of an anemic democracy, and the clock of destiny is ticking out. We must solve this problem before it is too late. We must go out once more and urge all men of good will to get to work, urge all the agencies of our nation, the federal government, white liberals of the North, white moderates of the South, organized labor, the church and all religious bodies, and the Negro himself.

And all these agencies must come together to work hard now to bring  about  the  fulfillment  of  the  dream  of  our  democracy. Social progress does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability. It comes only through persistent work and the tireless efforts of dedicated individuals. Without this persistent work time it becomes the ally of the insurgent and primitive forces of irrational emotionalism and social stagnation.

I think of the great work that has been done by the Society of Friends. It gives all of us who struggle for justice new hope, and I simply say to you this evening: continue in that struggle, continue with that same determination, and continue with that same faith in the future.

Modern psychology has a word that is used probably more than any other word in modern psychology. It is the word "maladjusted."
All of us are desirous of living the well-adjusted life. I know I am, and we must be concerned about living a well adjusted life in order to avoid neurotic and schizophrenic personalities.

But I say to you, as I come to my close, that there are certain things within our social order to which I am proud to be maladjusted, and I call upon you to be maladjusted to all of these things. 

I never intend to become adjusted to segregation and discrimination. I never intend to adjust myself to the viciousness of mob rule. I never intend to adjust myself to economic conditions which take necessities from the masses to give luxuries to the classes. I never intend to adjust myself to the madness of militarism and the self-defeating effects of physical violence.

I call upon you to be maladjusted to each of these things. It may be that the salvation of our world lies in the hands of the maladjusted. So let us be maladjusted. As maladjusted as the prophet Amos, who in the midst of the injustices of his day could cry out in words that echo across the generations, "Let judgment run down like waters, and righteousness like a mighty stream."

As maladjusted as Abraham Lincoln, who had the vision to see that this nation could not exist half slave and half free.

As maladjusted as Thomas Jefferson, who in the midst of an  age amazingly adjusted to slavery could cry out in words lifted to cosmic proportions, "All men are created equal, [and]...are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, [and]... among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness."

As maladjusted as Jesus of Nazareth, who could look at the men of his generation and cry out, "Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, pray for them that despitefully use you."

Through such maladjustment we will be able to emerge from the bleak and desolate midnight of man's inhumanity to man into the bright and glittering daybreak of freedom and justice. This is what stands ahead. We've made progress, and it is great progress that we must make if we are to fulfill the dreams of our democracy, the dreams of Christianity, the dreams of the great religions of the world.

I close by quoting the words of an old Negro slave preacher who didn't have his grammar quite right. But he uttered words with profound meaning. The words were in the form of a prayer: "Lord, we ain't what we want to be, we ain't what we ought to be, we ain't what we gonna' to be, but thank God, we ain't what we was."  And so tonight I say, "We ain't what we ought to be, but thank God we ain't what we was." 

And let us continue, my friends, going on and on toward that great city where all men will live together as brothers in respected dignity and worth of all human personality. This will be a great day, a day, figuratively speaking, when the "morning stars will sing together, and the sons of God will shout for joy.”

Martin Luther King, Jr., is President of the Montgomery, Alabama, Improvement Association. His moving address as given here is somewhat cut. In some of the passages deleted from the first part he spoke of the 50,000 Negro citizens of Montgomery who had ultimately found it "more honorable to walk in dignity than ride in humiliation," summarized the history of the Negro in America from 1619 through the nineteenth century, and linked the struggle of the American Negro to attain human dignity with the revolt of oppressed peoples all over the world, particularly in Asia and Africa.

From: FRIENDS JOURNAL July 26, 1958

Thursday, January 17, 2013

CIA Director told RFK Two People Shooting at JFK

               CIA Director John McCone told RFK “there were two people involved in the shooting.”

                                     CIA CHIEF TOLD RFK ABOUT TWO SHOOTERS

                                        Robert F. Kennedy and CIA Director John McCone

Please See:
JFKfacts » CIA chief told RFK about two shooters in Dallas

In Dallas on the night of the assassination, one copy of the Zapruder film of the assassination of President Kennedy was hand delivered to the Grand Prarie Naval Air Station where a jet pilot flew it to Washington D.C. 

The film was taken to either the FBI or Secret Service headquarters and it was viewed, but since the FBI and Secret Service aren't in the business of analyzing film, two Secret Service agents took it to the new state-of-the-art facility at the National Photo Interpretation Center (NPIC) at the Navy Yard. There it was turned over to Dino Brugioni. Brugioni's team analyzed it and made still enlargements of select individual frames that were mounted on briefing boards. They worked on the film throughout the night and in the morning the director of the NPIC Art Lundal, took the briefing boards to the CIA Headquarters.

                                                NPIC Z-FILM BRIEFING PANEL #1
This briefing board is similar to but not one of the briefing boards used by Lundal to brief John McCone
[For more background on the Z-Film at NPIC see:  JFKCountercoup2: Z-Film at NPIC Event #1
Art Lundal’s October 1962 briefing to JFK on U2 photo evidence of Soviet missiles in Cuba set off the Cuban Missile Crisis. Kennedy was so impressed with Lundal’s briefing he sent Lundal to London and Paris to brief the US Ambassador David Bruce and the Prime Minister and French President Charles DeGaul. The content of Lundal’s briefing to CIA director John McCone on the assassination is unknown, but it was ostensibly based on the NPIC analysis of the Zapruder film and the reports of the Secret Service agents who witnessed the assassination.

But when McCone went to the White House to brief the President on the assassination and the international situation, he found LBJ in the basement Situation Room monitoring reports from Dallas. When LBJ saw McCone, he waved him off and declined to see him. LBJ didn’t need to know anything the CIA had to say about the assassination or anything else.

                                                         Dino Brugioni of the NPIC

Brugioni wrote: "McCone found Lyndon Johnson colorless and crude in intelligence matters and, as president, clumsy and heavy-handed in international affairs. Instead of personally carefully considering prepared intelligence memorandums on intelligence matters, he preferred to be briefed by trusted advisors. Increasingly, the president sought intelligence information almost exclusively from Secretary McNamara and the Defense Department. McCone's advice simply was no longer actively sought by the president. His role diminished, his influence faded, and the ready access he had enjoyed during the Kennedy administration became very limited…"

While LBJ wasn’t interested in what the CIA had to say about the assassination, Robert F. Kennedy was inquisitively concerned, and a few weeks later, on December 9, RFK crossed paths with Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., a close aide and advisor to President Kennedy. When Kennedy’s casket was moved from the White House to the Capitol for the state funeral, RFK asked Schlesinger if the casket should be opened or closed. Schlesinger looked at the dead president’s lifeless body and waxed face and said it should be closed, and RFK agreed.

When they met on December 9th, Schlesinger asked RFK what he thought about the assassination, and in his journal Schlesinger wrote: “I asked him, perhaps tactlessly about Oswald. He said there could be no serious doubt that he was guilty, but there still was argument whether he did it by himself or as a part of a larger plot, whether organized by Castro or by gangsters. He said the FBI people thought he had done it by himself, but that McCone thought there were two people involved in the shooting.” (published in 2007 as Journals 1952-2000  (Penguin Press, Diary entry December 9, 1963 page 184),

That the Director of the CIA would tell the Attorney General he thought “there were two people involved in the shooting,” was not just a personal belief or an unsubstantiated opinion, it was a determination based on the NPIC analysis of the Zapruder film and the reports of the Secret Service agents who witnessed the assassination and said that the President and Governor Connally were hit by separate shots, indicating there was more than one gunman.

                                                        Arthur Schlesinger, Jr. and JFK

Journals 1952-2000. Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr (Penguin Press 2007)
Diary entry December 9, 1963 page 184 Schlesinger and Robert Kennedy discussion

Schlesinger: I asked him, perhaps tactlessly about Oswald. He said there could be no serious doubt that he was guilty, but there still was argument whether he did it by himself or as a part of a larger plot, whether organized by Castro or by gangsters. He said the FBI people thought he had done it by himself, but that McCone thought there were two people involved in the shooting.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Oswald and Ruby Phone Records – RFK, Jr. Got It Right

Oswald and Ruby Phone Records – RFK, Jr. Got It Right
By William E. Kelly, Jr.

Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. set off a firestorm of media and critical reaction after being interviewed in a public program at the Winspear Opera House in Dallas by saying that neither he nor his father believed that a “lone-gunman” killed President Kennedy.

Interviewed by Charlie Rose, Kennedy was also quoted as saying, “…When they examined Jack Ruby and Lee Harvey Oswald’s phone records,…they saw…an inventory of the Mafia leaders that they had been investigating…”

A former aide to Robert F. Kennedy, Paul Schrade, who was wounded in the same barrage of bullets that killed RFK, asked if the tape will be aired or a transcript of it released and they said they are waiting for permission from Kennedy and Charlie Rose. In the meantime, we are left with the quotes attributed to those who were there in the audience. Rodger Jones, an editorial writer for the Dallas News, in an apparent attempt to put the complete interview in context, wrote:

“RFK Jr.’s assassination narrative began with an anecdote about his dad seeing New Orleans DA Jim Garrison’s photo on a newsstand and asking an aide if there was anything to Garrison’s theories about the CIA, Cuba and Mafia in his brother’s killing. RFK Jr. said his dad was told that Garrison was on to something, but ‘the specifics of Garrison’s investigation went on the wrong track, but he thought there was a link …’ Kennedy said his dad put investigators on it. When they examined Jack Ruby and Lee Harvey Oswald’s phone records,… they saw what was essentially ‘an inventory of the Mafia leaders that they had been investigating for the past two years at the Justice Department.”

In response Jean Davison, and others, including Gary Mack and John McAdams, have questioned Kennedy’s facts, evidence and reasoning. While Mack said he believes that Betsy Lewis’ condescending version of the Opera House event is better (See: Dallas Observer, Jan. 12; “Not Even Charlie Rose Could Rein in RFK, Jr. in Dallas Last Night.”) and McAdams calls Kennedy a “crackpot” for his silly beliefs on other subjects, Davison gives a more reasoned response. As the author of the book “Oswald’s Game,” which attempts to portray Oswald as the lone assassin, she is known as a meticulous researcher and accurate writer, but one who comes to an unpopular and wrong conclusion concerning Oswald’s singular guilt.

Davison correctly notes: “This stood out to me: ‘ records of Oswald ... 'were like an inventory' of mafia leaders...’ Of course,…Oswald had no phone records since he never had a phone. Anyone can believe in a conspiracy, but where is the evidence? If Robert Kennedy ‘had investigators do research into the assassination,’ are Ruby's phone records (or Oswald's nonexistent ones) really the best they could come up with?...belief isn't evidence, is it?”

Belief isn’t evidence, but telephone records are evidence, hard evidence that can be introduced in a court of law, and the fact that there are no telephone records of the alleged assassin of the President certainly supports the contention that the Warren Commission investigation was, in Kennedy’s words, “a shoddy piece of craftsmanship.”

While the phone records aren’t the best evidence of conspiracy and Oswald may not have had his own telephone, he certainly did make telephone calls, including suspicious calls worthy of further examination, and there is substantial documentation to support this.

And we do have Jack Ruby’s extensive telephone records that clearly show in the weeks leading up to the assassination he had telephone conversations with a number of mobsters who were being actively investigated by Robert F. Kennedy’s Justice Department.

As for Oswald, in late April 1963, Ruth Paine drove him to the Dallas bus terminal where he caught a bus to his hometown, New Orleans. Once there, Oswald called his uncle Charles “Dutz” Murret, who lent him money and offered to assist him in relocating his family.

According to the House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA), “Oswald's uncle, Charles Murret (commonly known as "Dutz") had for some time been involved in the New Orleans gambling circles. The committee established that he was associated with organized crime figures there, having worked for years in an underworld gambling syndicate affiliated with the Carlos Marcello crime family….the committee first received information relating to Charles Murret's underworld involvement from a former prosecution witness against Teamster leader James R. Hoffa,…”

At the time both Carlos Marcello and Jimmy Hoffa were subjects of RFK’s Justice Department investigations and both were prosecuted in Federal courts.

After Oswald was arrested in New Orleans for getting into a street scuffle with anti-Castro Cuban members of the Student Revolutionary Directorate (DRE), he called his uncle Dutz and was bailed out by Emile Bruneau, an associate of Nofilo Pecora, one of the mobsters who had telephone conversations with Jack Ruby.

Oswald also made other telephone calls that were of investigative interest.

Oswald reportedly called New York City radio talk show host Long John Nebel and a Florida radio program, to talk about Cuban matters.

On September 25, 1963, after leaving New Orleans, ostensibly for Mexico City, Oswald placed a phone call to Horace Twiford, a longshoreman and official of the Texas Socialist Labor Party in Houston.

Later that week someone impersonating Oswald twice called the Russian Embassy in Mexico City, but tape recordings of that call, which later disappeared, were heard by FBI agents familiar with Oswald’s voice and they claimed it wasn’t him.

Back in Dallas, Oswald lived for a week at the home of Mary Bledsoe, whose telephone we know he used because she complained that she didn’t like the fact “Oswald talked on the phone in a foreign language.”

On November 17, 1963 Ruth Paine called Oswald’s rooming house in Oak Cliff and a few days later Oswald called Marina at Mrs. Paine’s home from the rooming house, but you will not find any phone records of Mrs. Bledsoe’s home or the Oak Cliff rooming house among the records of the Warren Commission.

After Oswald began working at the Texas School Book Depository (TSBD) a secretary there said that Oswald once received a long distance person to person phone call and that he often asked for change to make phone calls from the pay phone on the first floor. TSBD foreman William Shelley said he saw Oswald between 11:50 and 12 noon on November 22, standing next to that telephone, as if waiting for a call.

Once arrested, from the Dallas City Jail, Oswald made a number of telephone calls, at least two to Mrs. Paine’s home in Irving, one to New York attorney John Abt, and a call that lasted a long time to a yet unidentified party. He also tried to call a mysterious John Hurt of North Carolina, but did not get through to him.

The Warren Commission, despite conducting a shoddy investigation, did collect Jack Ruby’s telephone records as well as the phone records of some of his associates, which proved to be of investigative significance.

The HSCA reviewed Ruby’s phone records more closely and investigators noticed a pronounced spike in the increase in Ruby’s calls in the days and weeks leading up to the assassination. “A chronological consolidation of the telephone calls made by Ruby from the five separate business and home telephones he used uncovered a significant increase in the number of calls made in October and November 1963. The average number lept from around 25 to 35 in the months of May through September to approximately 75 in October and approximately 96 during the first 3 1/2 weeks of November.”

Many of these calls were to or received from known mobsters and union racketeers, some of whom were being investigated by RFK’s Justice Department, including Barney Barker,  Dusty Miller, Lenny Patrick, Dave Yaras, Lewis McWillie, Irwin S. Weiner and Nofio Pecora.

Barney Barker was a boxer, ex-convict and “one of Hoffa’s best known associates during the McClellan Committee investigation,” when RFK was the chief counsel to that committee which “detailed Baker’s role as Hoffa’s personal liaison to various Mafia figures, as well as to a number of well-known syndicate executioners.”  As counsel to the committee RFK noted that, “sometimes the mere threat of [Baker’s] presence in a room was enough to silence the men who would otherwise have opposed Hoffa’s reign.”

Dusty Miller was another Hoffa assistant and head of the Teamster’s southern conference, while Lenny Patrick was “one of the Chicago Mafia’s leading assassins and was responsible, according to Federal and State law enforcement files, for the murders of over a dozen victims of the mob.” Patrick was a capo under Chicago mob boss Sam Giancana.

Dave Yaras, like Patrick, was a childhood friend of Ruby from his old Chicago neighborhood, and “was overheard in a 1962 electronic surveillance discussing various underworld murder contracts he had carried out and one he had only recently been assigned.”

Lewis McWillie moved from Dallas to Cuba in 1958 to work in the Havana gambling casinos owned by Meyer Lansky and Santos Trafficante. Ruby visited him in Cuba on a number of occasions and returned with cash that he deposited in a Miami bank for McWillie’s boss.

Irwin Weiner was a Chicago bail bondsman and close associate of Hoffa and Giancana and was described by Jack Anderson as “the underworld’s major financial figure in the Midwest.”

Pecora was a Carlos Marcello associate whose friend Emile Bruneau bailed Oswald out of jail when he was arrested with the Cubans.

So Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. was correct in stating that both Oswald and Ruby, - especially Ruby, did make telephone calls of investigative significance to mobsters that Robert F. Kennedy, as Attorney General, would have recognized as suspects under investigation.

In reporting on RFK Jr.’s remarks about the assassination, ABC News quoted historian Robert Dallek as saying the assassination has been “investigated, re-investigated, investigated again and again and no one’s ever come up with highly credible evidence” to contradict the theory that Oswald acted alone.

Well there certainly is highly credible evidence that Oswald did not act alone, whatever it is you believe he did, and the telephone records of both Oswald and Ruby do indicate that both men were connected, at least by telephone, to mobsters who were being investigated by RFK’s Justice Department, just as Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. said in Dallas.

This is not to say that organized crime and these mobsters were responsible for murdering the president. As Kennedy is also quoted as saying, “I think my father was fairly convinced at the end of that that there had been involvement by somebody …”

When Rose interrupted him to ask, “Organized crime, Cubans …?” Kennedy responded, “Or rogue CIA.

What is significant is that despite the JFK Act of 1992, which ordered the release of all the government records, the CIA has continued to withhold many assassination records for reasons of national security, belying the contention that the murder of the president is ancient history or no longer relevant.

It isn’t a matter of debating who killed the president, or blaming anyone, credible evidence indicates Oswald alone was not responsible for the assassination, outstanding questions have yet to be answered, many records are still secret, the case is not closed, and the law enforcement system should at least make the attempt to answer those questions and bring legal resolution to an unsolved homicide.

[William E. Kelly, Jr. is a freelance journalist from Browns Mills, New Jersey, who writes He can be reached at ]