Tag Archives: CBS

How the CIA Controlled the Media in the JFK Assassination Cover-Up

[The following is an excerpt from my book, JFK and the End of America: Inside the Allen Dulles/LBJ Plot That Killed Kennedy.]

Dan Rather and Walter Cronkite co-anchored a CBS special in 1967 called “CBS News Extra: November 22 and The Warren Report.” (It pre-empted “Mr. Ed,” the show about a talking horse; in retrospect, a talking horse was more credible than the information Cronkite and Rather provided.)  CBS compromised any honest investigation when it consulted with Allen Dulles before and after the program. Dulles was allowed to inspect the transcripts and was said to have had some minor objections to the content.  This was Dulles’s shrewd way of letting CBS think it actually had some independence while still controlling what was broadcast.  In the end, the CIA had nothing to fear.  The network’s news director at the time, William Small, exchanged a series of letters with Dulles in which Dulles “…commended Small for a job well done.”66 Such was the broadcast media’s obsequious subservience to Dulles and the CIA.  Fact finding lost out to the secret state’s official version of the assassination.  As a result, a false history of America was created; one that is still deeply embedded in the mythology of this country’s past.

Rather and Cronkite, and their ilk, were willing accomplices in this fraud. Why did they do it?  Were they just blissfully unaware of the genuine truth?  Did they gullibly swallow whole what was fed to them by the plotters?  Or were they just ambitious men, consumed with the prestige and influence their mere faces and voices transmitted, and unwilling to surrender their lofty positions by actually challenging the men who really ran the country?  Whatever their motives, it is hard to believe that they did not recognize the Warren Report for what it really was—an implausible fairy tale concocted by flawed men to cover up the ugliest political crime in American history.  But instead of summoning the courage to face that ugly truth, CBS and all the other Mockingbird assets chose the path of least resistance.  The CIA’s Frank Wisner once bragged that Operation Mockingbird was like his own personal Wurlitzer: he could play any tune on it he wanted, and America would follow along.  And consider these chilling declarations from Dulles’s successors—William Colby (CIA Director from 1973-76): “The CIA owns everyone of any significance in the major media”67; William Casey (DCIA from 1981-87): “We’ll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false.”68

Even that giant of the television medium, Walter Cronkite, was not immune to corruptive influences. As a fellow Texan (Cronkite spent his youth in Houston), Cronkite had an affinity for Lyndon Johnson.  Johnson “treated him more like a second cousin than a fourth-estate adversary.”69 Cronkite’s boss at CBS, Frank Stanton, was a close friend of Johnson’s.  According to Cronkite’s biographer Douglas Brinkley, “[LBJ] hoping to exert control over CBS…would routinely call Stanton to grouse about on-air content…[and] whenever LBJ went to New York, Stanton would fete him with limousines, cocktails, and coffee…to keep him happy.”70

Cronkite was also linked to Allen Dulles. In 1976 an ABC News reporter named Sam Jaffe claimed that he had seen Cronkite’s name at the top of the list of journalists who worked for the CIA.  Jaffe also confirmed that Cronkite had received a briefing from Dulles as part of his normal duties.  When Cronkite learned of Jaffe’s allegations, “…the anchorman sprang into damage control mode, traveling from New York City to Langley, Virginia, to confront George H.W. Bush [then CIA Director]…Cronkite demanded the list of news people who had actually been CIA agents.”71 Bush refused to release it, but later the CIA “confirmed that…CBS correspondents had worked for the agency.”72 Beyond Cronkite’s understandable consternation at having his journalistic reputation compromised, it is revelatory to note here that a list of CIA journalist assets apparently DID exist.  And George Bush, head of the CIA, kept it secret.  Cronkite did not deny being a CIA asset, nor did he seek a disavowal of his collaboration with the agency from George Bush.  Instead, Cronkite sought to verify that he was only one of many newsmen who had worked for the CIA, as if public knowledge of such common practice would legitimize it.  It speaks to the power of Operation Mockingbird.  If the CIA had ensnared Cronkite, the number one television journalist of the 1960s, what newsman was immune to the agency’s perfidious influence?

Read more at www.amazon.com/dp/1948260085

 

We’re Trapped in a Neo-Fascist State and There’s No Way Out

Good-bye, America.  It’s been nice knowing you.

That’s right; according to an Ivy League study which I cited in a previous post, we no longer live in a democracy.  To refresh your memory, two researchers at Princeton University, Martin Gilens and Benjamin Page, have found that “…over the past few decades America’s political system has slowly transformed from a democracy into an oligarchy, where wealthy elites wield most power.”

Compiling data from over 1,800 different policy initiatives from 1981 to 2008, Gilens and Page conclude that rich, well-connected individuals now control the direction of the country, regardless of the will of the majority of voters. “The central point that emerges from our research is that economic elites and organized groups representing business interests have substantial independent impacts on U.S. government policy…while mass-based interest groups and average citizens have little or no independent influence.”

Extrapolated to its logical conclusion, America is now controlled by a very small cabal of wealthy and powerful elites, mostly with extreme right-wing political views, who have literally purchased the judicial and legislative branches of the U.S. government and are spending billions to recapture the executive branch by 2016. In my previous post I described this type of system as an oligarchy, but it is even worse than that.  It is fascism.

What is fascism?  Benito Mussolini, an expert on the subject, defined fascism as the merger of the state and corporations to form a corrupt government which services only the needs of the elite few.  In order for fascism to work, government officials need corporations to fund their political ambitions without restraint or judicial oversight.  The recent Supreme Court ruling allowing unlimited political donations took care of that. But fascism needs much more to thrive.  Shockingly, these elements are coming together in American society today.

1) A compliant, reticent, and wholly subservient media are necessary to look the other way.  Investigative journalism in America is dead.  Why?  Because all major media outlets are controlled by large corporate conglomerates and are run for profit, not for truth-telling.  We already know that FOX is not a real news network, but merely the manifestation of one sick man’s (Rupert Murdoch’s) pathological right-wing propaganda machine.  But what is even sicker is that supposedly legitimate news organizations such as CBS (Westinghouse) and NBC (General Electric) are corporate subsidiaries unlikely to report on how America is becoming a neo-fascist state.  [Note: GE contributes millions to right-wing candidates each election cycle.]

2) The greater good must be downplayed by a self-absorbed, distracted citizenry. Witness the rise of vacuous enterprises like Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.  Take a good look at what passes for information on these sites and you will be appalled at the narcissistic trivia.  Fascists want a society that is self-involved.  Fascism cannot thrive under a system that is concerned with the greater good.  Thus, those right wingers (neo-fascists) who attack Social Security, Medicare, and affordable health care are doing their masters’ bidding.

3) War or the threat of war must be constant.  Fascists control their citizens when the citizens are constantly cowering in fear of being overrun by hordes of foreigners.  This fear more easily facilitates the next factor in the fascist formula–

4) The system must be rigged.  Check.  Sixty percent of our tax dollars go to defense contractors who, in turn, buy politicians who, in turn, continue to authorize military spending.  It is a never-ending cycle; it is an out-of-control beast which cannot be killed.  America runs on defense; it is a hugely profitable industry, and most American corporations feed at the pig trough.  Naturally these corporations are going to buy politicians who will continue this system.

5) Truth must be trashed; pseudo-science must be elevated to fact.  We see this in climate change denial and the elimination of evolution education in public classrooms.  Under a fascist system the truth is malleable and for sale.  Corrupt idiots like Republican Senator James Imhofe will regurgitate any sort of lie to keep their cushy jobs.

6) Minorities must be demonized and marginalized.  The old fascist methods of mass murdering minorities (i.e., the Holocaust) are outdated; the new slaughter comes in the form of denigrating the worth and dignity of African-Americans and Latinos (largely liberal voters on the lower socioeconomic rungs).  Right-wing pyschopaths who listen to the daily rants of Limbaugh and O’Reilly can easily justify in their deranged minds the voter suppression, welfare denial, even murder of minorities.

7) Dissent is forbidden.  The media restrict real debate of issues, and left-wing advocacy is virtually non-existent on over-the-air TV, radio, and newspapers.

Had enough?  I’ll leave you with one more bit of warning.  The following quote is from a member of Ronald Reagan’s cabinet.

“Americans have given up the rule of law that protected their liberty. The silence of law schools and bar associations indicates that the age of liberty has passed. In short, the American people support tyranny. And that’s where they are headed.”

–Paul Craig Roberts, inventor of trickle-down economics

http://www.amazon.com/Presidents-Mortician-Tim-Fleming-ebook/dp/B00I6GNPD4

Why Are They Still Lying To Us About JFK’s Murder? A Minister Tells Us Why

Of all the great JFK assassination books published last year (to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the assassination), one of the best was written by a Methodist minister named Dr. Lance Moore. Dr. Moore’s book, “Killing JFK: 50 Years, 50 Lies–From the Warren Commission to Bill O’Reilly, A History of Deceit in the Kennedy Assassination,” is meticulously researched, eloquently stated, and worthy of serious consideration. Yet you have probably never heard of Dr. Moore or his book. That’s because the media blackout of all voices critical of the official version (read establishment lies)of the assassination have stifled the purveyors of historical truth. I sympathize with Dr. Moore and other JFK authors/researchers, because I too have been denied access to mainstream media outlets (with the notable exception of my hometown St. Louis Post-Dispatch). Despite this, 75% of Americans know we are being fed a pack of lies by NBC, CBS, ABC, PBS, the New York Times, the Washington Post, and all other corporate-owned conglomerates who have had a long, cozy relationship with the CIA.

In a piece written for OpEd News Dr. Moore condemns the unbalanced media and questions the purpose of continuing the cover-up a half-century after the event. He writes:

“A few days after the 50th Anniversary of the assassination of John F. Kennedy, my wife and I chatted with a new acquaintance in an upscale bar in D.C., a spot frequented by Congressmen. Leaning toward us across the table, a dapperly-dressed man confirmed my suspicions about the CIA and a certain magazine. His wife, he confided, works for the internationally-prestigious magazine, and she had told him the CIA frequented her workplace to spy on a nearby embassy–with full cooperation by her employers. I found her story credible, in part because it is now well-established that the CIA infiltrated and influenced a long list of newspapers and magazines.1 Initially, I had been surprised that the magazine in question, an organization with great credibility in the academic community, risked their reputation to broadcast blatant lies about the JFK shooting. Why fib about something that happened half-a-century ago? The answer is astounding: the CIA –fifty years on–still believes it cannot afford the hit to its credibility… it refuses to admit that Lee Harvey Oswald was a company man. And it still has a vise-like grip on the mainstream media.

I am not a kook. Several parchments from prestigious institutions hang on my wall to assure me that I’m not crazy. I’m not a 911 ‘Truther’ or a ‘Man didn’t land on the moon’ conspiracy nut. Yet, when I began promoting my book about the JFK assassination, I observed some curious things. Major news outlets circled their wagons around the ‘official’ government story that Lee Harvey Oswald was a lone nut, nixing any dissenting opinions. Pro-Warren Commission, pro-lone-gunman pundits (a dying breed) were trotted out on CBS, ABC and even PBS. Credible experts who offer proof of government complicity were disinvited. Others in the assassination-research community told me similar stories of how they had been scheduled for cable news/network appearances, but were cancelled at the last minute–without explanation. Even my local city newspaper, which has featured my writing on other topics, refused to print a rebuttal I had written to counter a ‘lone-gunman did it’ fluff-piece they ran in November 2013.

I have been harassed. Nasty, over-the-top attacks were posted on the Amazon review page of my JFK book (despite four and five star reviews by 95% of readers). Correspondence between myself and Vince Palamara (a Secret Service expert who has been featured on C-SPAN, the History Channel, etc.) was sliced open and contents stolen, apparently with the blessing of the U.S. Postal Service.2 At the 50th anniversary event in Dealey Plaza November 22nd, an ABC-TV cameraman pulled out his iPhone and snapped a picture of my book’s cover, saying he was personally interested in it… but made it clear his network was not. A CBS reporter and his cameraman interviewed me, but the footage never aired. At the end of the day, outside the Dallas JFK museum in the Texas School Book Depository, I was assaulted–choked without any provocation–by the bodyguard of former Secret Service Agent Clint Hill, as I tried to shake hands with Hill after his book-signing.3 These are things happening now, not 50 years ago.

But let’s back up and look at the long media history. The few times the networks dared examine the topic, the reporting was one-sided. CBS, for example, gave extended screen-time to so-called “conspiracy debunker” Gerald Posner, but allowed only short, benign snippets from lone-gunman critics like Dr. Cyril Wecht (and Dr. Wecht is a top-notch forensic scientist; Posner is not). I challenge doubters to put a stopwatch on any major network’s coverage of the JFK assassination and see how much time is afforded the debunkers vs. the conspiracy ‘nuts.’ Though I am personally convinced that the CIA helped kill Kennedy, I concede there are two sides to this debate. So, mainstream media, give us both sides! The one-sided press coverage should scare the hell out of us.”

You can read the full article on opednews.com

http://www.amazon.com/Presidents-Mortician-Tim-Fleming/dp/098882907X