John Chuckman



Way back with the publication of the Warren Report, Bertrand Russell, who regarded it as a complete fabrication, asked a set of penetrating questions about it.

The most important question was to the effect that if the murder was the straightforward act of one man, as the Commission asserted, where was any issue of national security?

It, as is the case with the others, has never been answered.

And from that one unanswered question tumbles out the whole dirty, tangled mess we’ve witnessed for half a century.

In fact, there was no need for a commission, if the Commission itself was right.

Kennedy’s body should have been autopsied in Dallas, as in any normal murder, instead of being rushed away, literally at Secret Service gunpoint, to Washington.

Oswald should have been tried in Dallas, the rightful criminal jurisdiction, assassination of a president at that time not even being a federal crime.

The Warren Commission’s Report is nothing more than a poorly argued prosecutor’s brief created after Oswald was eliminated. It reflects absolutely none of the traditional judicial procedures such as cross examination or legal counsel for the accused, and it selected which bits of evidence it permitted to be entered while ignoring large amounts of other evidence. We know it even altered evidence which proved inconvenient.

The Commission, as many Americans do not appreciate still, actually did no investigation. All investigation was through J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI, and Hoover was a man who somehow mysteriously decided Oswald was his man within a very short time of the crime with virtually no tested evidence. Scores of good witnesses were ignored. Less important witnesses were treated as important. And some good witnesses who were questioned actually discovered their words had been changed when shown them printed in the Warren Report, this last being a not uncommon experience.

Hoover was also a man who intensely hated Kennedy and is said to have been pleased on hearing of his death. It is a matter of historical record that the CIA, supposedly working on its own in-house examination of events, lied and misrepresented to the Commission, as concerning recordings and surveillance photos from Mexico City. It kept large quantities of relevant files hidden, and it did not even inform the Commission of some very important matters, such as its program of cooperation with Mafia hoodlums in efforts to assassinate Castro. Some investigation the case got!

To my mind, nothing so clearly indicates the inept nature of the Warren Commission than Chief Justice Warren’s telling Jack Ruby in the Dallas Jail that he couldn’t take him to Washington for questioning, Ruby’s having practically begged him to do so because he had important things to say and felt unsafe saying them in Dallas. The Head of the Supreme Court and of the blue-ribbon commission couldn’t do that? Of course, he could. No one would dare stop him had he chosen to do so. He simply chose not to.

Clearly, other dark matters were involved, and it is those other matters that are at the heart of the assassination.

By the way, the one American journalist who ruthlessly pursued the truth at the time, popular columnist Dorothy Kilgallen, did somehow land the only press interview with Ruby. She then promised the public she would break the case wide open with the scoop of the century, but she was soon discovered in her apartment “suicided.” All notes from her interview and the write-up she started were gone and have never turned up.

Virtually the entire journalism profession in the U.S. acted just as they do today concerning America’s ugly acts abroad: they hid or lied. America’s press works today just as it did then, as an unofficial arm of government, taking its guidance from security agency winks and nods.

An interesting fact, often ignored, is that in the weeks up to Dallas, two other assassination plots were discovered. One was in Chicago and one in Tampa. In both cases, there was a similar pattern in the planning around Kennedy limousine rides during his visits. The shots were to be fired around a big turn which slowed down the car. There even were Oswald-like figures, the one in Tampa sharing a great deal of Oswald’s background as a former “defector” from the military.

When it comes to such high-level murder, there can be no such thing as that kind of coincidence.

The assassination involved an elaborate plot and a number of actors, and the ludicrous Warren Commission simply closed its eyes and constructed a kind of pastiche of selected bits of untested evidence that it judged adequate to satisfy public curiosity. Why they did this cannot be known at this time, but President Johnson in assembling the commission repeatedly pressured potential appointees with dark warnings about catastrophic events in which tens of millions would die.