WEIRDLAND: 60th Anniversary of JFK's victory

Monday, November 09, 2020

60th Anniversary of JFK's victory

60 years ago, John Kennedy was elected President of the United States, winning back the White House for the Democrats after eight years of Republican rule. The final result showed JFK won the White House with 34,227,096 votes, to Nixon’s 34,107,646, with 303 electoral votes to 219. It was an even narrower victory than election analysts had first thought. The result made him the first Roman Catholic president in US history and the youngest elected president as well. Nixon was gracious in defeat? As Donald Trump cries fraud, a different tone took hold 60 years ago. Following initial doubt over the result, Nixon addressed the crowd gathered at republican headquarters in Los Angeles in the early hours. He told them: “I want senator Kennedy to know - I want you all to know - that if this trend does continue and he does become president, he will have my whole-hearted support”. In his acceptance speech in the 1960 United States presidential election to the Democratic National Convention at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, JFK stated: "We stand today on the edge of a New Frontier—the frontier of unknown opportunities and perils, the frontier of unfilled hopes and unfilled threats. Beyond that frontier are uncharted areas of science and space, unsolved problems of peace and war, unconquered problems of ignorance and prejudice, unanswered questions of poverty and surplus." In the words of Robert D. Marcus: "Kennedy entered office with ambitions to eradicate poverty and to raise America's eyes to the stars through the space program."

At the news conference at Parkland Hospital, Dr. Malcolm Perry stated three times that JFK’s throat wound was an entry. Unfortunately, Perry later refused to repeat this for the WC. But recent JFK releases include a statement from Perry’s surgical colleague at the University of Washington. Perry had admitted to Dr. Donald Miller, Jr., that he had told the truth on November 22, 1963 (it was an entry wound), but then later (under pressure) he had lied to the WC.  Just one month before, Dr. Austin Griner had told Dr. Michael Chesser that federal agents had threatened Perry (born in Allen, Texas) with deportation if he did not reverse his initial report of an entrance wound. Dr. Carrico said: "There was a round bruise circle around the throat wound... as it always is." In forensic analysis, an exit wound may or may not have a bruise circle around it, but an entrance wound always has the bruise circle around. Such a tiny throat exit wound could not be duplicated in experiments by the WC; Milton Helpern, who had done 60,000 autopsies, had never seen an exit wound that small. Before political leverage was exerted, the first scenario by the CIA’s National Photographic and Interpretation Center (NPIC) included a throat shot at Z-190; During a WC Executive Session (December 18, 1963), Hale Boggs, and Gerald Ford discussed a possible frontal shot from the overpass. The alteration of the Zapruder film: The initial clue to its alteration was the limousine stop. The Zapruder film does not show such a stop, but the ten closest witnesses all recalled such a stop. Altogether, over 50 witnesses recalled a stop. Even early articles often take this stop for granted. The pre-eminent authority on the Z-film is John Costella, a PhD physicist with special expertise in the properties of light. He is also highly skilled at detecting optical distortions produced via imaging transformations, a skill that is directly pertinent to the Zapruder film. As a simple demonstration, Costella notes the impossible features of Z-232 (i.e., frame 232 of the Zapruder film), which was originally published in LIFE’s 1963 Memorial Edition. In Z-232, this blurring is grossly inconsistent, which could only occur if this frame had been altered. In 1975, Rockefeller Commission documents (notes made by the CIA's technical staff at NPIC) showed that NPIC had possessed the film the weekend of the assassination. It was unclear for decades whether the CIA at NPIC had copied the film as a motion picture (and possibly altered it), or had simply made prints. 


In 2009, researcher/author Peter Janney located the NPIC official and briefing-board czar, Dino Brugioni, and then Janney and Douglas Horne together queried Brugioni about his own involvement with the Z-film during that weekend. It turned out that the two NPIC officials interviewed by Horne in 1997 were part of a second Z-film event at NPIC that same weekend (on Sunday night, November 24), but that Brugioni had been in charge of the first Z-film event (the prior evening, on Saturday night, November 23). The ARRB had not known that there had been two events. Brugioni and his team examined the original, unaltered film at the first event (and made blowup prints from individual frames); the second "briefing board" event, the next night, involved a different team of workers at NPIC, who made blowup prints of an altered Z-film. Horne's interviews in 1997 for the ARRB revealed that the Z-film delivered to NPIC for the second event had been created (i.e., altered) at Kodak's primary research and development facility, "Hawkeyeworks," in Rochester, N.Y., during a 12-hour period during Sunday, November 24, 1963. Because the CIA had a longstanding contractual relationship with Kodak at Hawkeyeworks, it is likely that Kodak performed these Z-film alterations at the behest of the CIA. The existence of two separate events, just one day apart, with neither group aware of the other one, very strongly implies an intelligence operation. Brugioni initially (to his utter amazement) had not known about this second event, as he had attended only the first event. Furthermore, he believes that the extant Z-film is not the film he saw. Early viewers of the original film had seen evidence for multiple shots—clearly more than admitted by the WC—so these subsequent alterations were essential for the official WC conclusion. In short, if the Z-film had not been altered, it would have been obvious that the WC’s scenario (of only three shots) was a myth. But there is even more. The Black Patch over the back of JFK’s head is grossly (even preposterously) apparent in a copy of the Z-film obtained directly from the Archives by Sydney Wilkinson. This is a US government authorized and certified, third generation, 35 mm, dupe negative of the “forensic version” of the Zapruder film. Moreover, many independent observers—Greg Burnham, Milicent Cranor, Scott Myers, Dan Rather, Cartha DeLoach, William Reymond, William Manchester, Homer McMahon, Dino Brugioni, Erwin Schwartz, Rich Delarosa, and others—have seen a different version of the Zapruder film. Each one of these, without conferring with anyone else, recalls a version that is clearly different from the extant one. Furthermore, their observations (of details missing from the extant film) are consistent with one another. As a further clue to the history of this puzzle, David Lifton will suggest (in his forthcoming book Final Charade) that Robert S. McNamara probably approved the Z-film alteration. 

LBJ decided to secretly tape all his telephone conversations. He told close aides that he did this for two main reasons. It would help him write his memoirs; and he could use this information to apply pressure (blackmail) on politicians and businessmen. Johnson informed his longtime personal assistant Mildred Stegall that if he died unexpectedly, she must destroy the tapes and their transcripts. However, when died of a heart attack at San Antonio, Texas, on 22nd January, 1973, Stegall did not carry out his instructions. Instead, she placed them in sealed boxes and sent them to the LBJ Presidential Library with the instructions that they must not be opened until at least January 2023. Johnson appointed the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, Earl Warren to head the commission. Other members of the commission included Allen W. Dulles (the former head of the CIA who had been sacked by President Kennedy after the Bay of Pigs disaster), John J. McCloy (chairman of the Chase Manhattan Bank and the Ford Foundation, who at the end of the war helped recruit senior figures in the Gestapo into the security services of West Germany and the United States that made him blackmailable). This rest of the Commission were politicians that President Johnson could manipulate - Gerald Ford, Richard B. Russell, John S. Cooper and Thomas H. Boggs. Johnson was especially close to Russell who gave him daily updates on what was being said at the Warren Commission meetings. The phone call tape to appoint Earl Warren as head of the commission has either been destroyed or has never been declassified. However, we do have several telephone conversations with Richard Russell, the Senator from Georgia and the leader in Congress resisting Civil Rights legislation. At first Russell refused to serve on the commission. Johnson said: "You've never turned your country down. This is not me. This is your country... You're my man on that commission and you're going to do it! And don't tell me what you can do and what you can't because I can't arrest you and I'm not going to put the FBI on you. But you're goddamned sure going to serve - I'll tell you that!" This is how Johnson worked. He said "I'm not going to put the FBI on you". This is a reminder that he has information about Russell that the FBI is interested in. (Johnson used a man called Bobby Baker to pay bribes to Russell.) Johnson was confident he would be the Democratic Party nomination to be their candidate in 1960. He was the Senate majority leader, the second most powerful man in American politics. As majority leader you decide on who becomes chairman of the various Senate committees. Senators or their financial backers were willing to pay large sums of money to become chairman of committees that can award highly profitable government contracts to private companies. 

John Kennedy was the first person to declare himself as a candidate. Johnson thought that Kennedy had little chance of being successful as he was a Roman Catholic and came from the north of the country. Catholics were a persecuted minority in the Deep South. The Ku Klux Klan lynched not only blacks, socialists and trade unionists, but Catholics (they disliked them because they allowed blacks to attend their services). The Democrat Party had only selected one Catholic as a prospective president (Al Smith in 1928) who lost heavily to Herbert Hoover. People in the Deep South voted for a Republican from the North rather than a Roman Catholic. Johnson was confident that Kennedy's campaign would falter, and he would arrive late in the contest to take the nomination. Johnson calculated that Kennedy would be badly beaten by Hubert Humphrey in the May primary in the solidly Protestant West Virginia. In the final days of the campaign, using both planes and cars, Joseph P. Kennedy "moved in hundreds of thousands of dollars (possibly over $1 million) into the state." Kennedy defeated Humphrey by a margin of 61 percent to 39 percent, "a state the national press had said a Catholic could never win." By 1963 John F. Kennedy realised that Lyndon B. Johnson had become a problem as vice-president as he had been drawn into political scandals involving Fred Korth, Billie Sol Estes and Bobby Baker. According to James Wagenvoord, the editorial business manager of Life, the magazine was working on an article that would have revealed Johnson's corrupt activities. "Beginning in later summer 1963 the magazine, based upon information fed from Bobby Kennedy and the Justice Department, had been developing a major newsbreak piece concerning Johnson and Bobby Baker. On publication Johnson would have been finished and off the 1964 ticket (reason the material was fed to us) and would probably have been facing prison time. At the time LIFE magazine was arguably the most important general news source in the US. The top management of Time Inc. was closely allied with the USA's various intelligence agencies and we were used after by the Kennedy Justice Department as a conduit to the public." The fact that it was Robert Kennedy who was giving this information to Life Magazine suggests that Kennedy intended to drop Johnson as his vice-president. This is supported by Evelyn Lincoln, Kennedy's secretary. In her book, Kennedy and Johnson (1968) she claimed that in November, 1963, Kennedy decided that because of the emerging Bobby Baker scandal he was going to drop Johnson as his running mate in the 1964 election. Kennedy told Lincoln that he was going to replace Johnson with Terry Sanford, the Governor of North Carolina. On 22nd November, 1963, a businessman, Don B. Reynolds, appeared before a secret session of the Senate Rules Committee. Reynolds also told of seeing a suitcase full of money which Bobby Baker described as a "$100,000 payoff to Johnson for his role in securing the Fort Worth TFX contract". Reynolds also provided evidence against Matthew H. McCloskey. 

He suggested that he'd given $25,000 to Baker in order to get the contract to build the District of Columbia Stadium. Members of the committee thought that when this information was published Lyndon B. Johnson would be forced to resign. Reynolds' testimony came to an end when news arrived that John F. Kennedy had been assassinated. In September, 1975, a subcommittee under Richard Schweiker was asked to investigate the performance of the intelligence agencies concerning the assassination of John F. Kennedy. In its final report, issued in April 1976, the Select Committee to Study Governmental Operations with Respect to Intelligence Activities concluded: "Domestic intelligence activity has threatened and undermined the Constitutional rights of Americans to free speech, association and privacy. It has done so primarily because the Constitutional system for checking abuse of power has not been applied." The committee also revealed details for the first time of what the CIA called Operation Mockingbird (a secret programme to control the media). In 1976, a Detroit News poll indicated that 87% of the American population did not believe that Lee Harvey Oswald was the lone gunman who killed Kennedy. Later that year, Senator Thomas N. Downing called for a new investigation into the assassination of John F. Kennedy. Downing said he was certain that Kennedy had been killed as a result of a conspiracy. He also believed that the CIA and the FBI had withheld important information from the Warren Commission. The House Select Committee of Assassinations set up a panel of forensic pathologists to examine the autopsy materials and other medical evidence. During the investigation the committee discovered that the Dallas Police had a recording of the assassination. A microphone, mounted on one of the motorcycles escorting the motorcade, had picked up sounds in Dealey Plaza at the time of the assassination. Acoustic experts analysed the recording and were able to distinguish four rifle shots. They concluded that there was a 95 per cent probability that the third bullet was fired from the Grassy Knoll. As a result of this acoustic evidence G. Robert Blakey was able to state that there were "four shots, over a total period of 7.91 seconds were fired at the Presidential limousine. The first, second and fourth came from the Depository; the third from the Grassy Knoll." The House Select Committee on Assassinations concluded that "scientific acoustical evidence establishes a high probability that two gunmen fired at President John F. Kennedy." It added that "on the basis of the evidence available to it, that President John F. Kennedy was probably assassinated as a result of a conspiracy". The HSCA was "unable to identify the other gunman or the extent of the conspiracy." G. Robert Blakey and Richard Billings wrote an account of the HSCA investigation entitled The Plot to Kill the President (1981). In the book Blakey and Billings argue that there was a conspiracy to kill John F. Kennedy. In 1993 Gaeton Fonzi, the HSCA leading investigator, published The Last Investigation, a book detailing his research into the assassination. It is considered by many critics as among the best books on the Kennedy assassination and is currently recognized as an authority on those aspects of the assassination involving anti-Castro Cubans and the intelligence agencies. Fonzi became very interested in the forces that enabled the the cover-up to take place: "Could any but a totally controlling force - a power elite within the United States Government itself - call it what you will, the military-intelligence complex, the national security state, the corporate-warfare establishment - could any but the most powerful elite controlling the U.S. Government have been able to manipulate individuals and events before the assassination and then bring such a broad spectrum of internal forces to first cover up the crime and then control the institutions within our society to keep the assassination of President Kennedy a false mystery for 50 years?" Source: 

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