AHC (American Heroes Channel) is now running a documentary called “Justice For MLK: The Hunt For James Earl Ray.” It purports to tell the story of how Dr. Martin Luther King was killed and how his alleged assassin was captured. But it’s long on myth and short on relevant facts. It adds little to the historical record, but like a comforting fairy tale it tries to assuage our nagging doubts about the ubiquitous lone-gunman myth used to explain away all ’60s assassinations. Like in the JFK and RFK killings, legitimate evidence exists to inculpate conspirators and covert operatives in MLK’s killing, but this evidence is ignored. Instead Gerald Posner, the prevaricating viper who gave us “Case Closed,” is dragged out once again to spew disinformation. (Side note: Posner physically resembles a snake; he has dark, lifeless eyes and a misshapen cobra head. So my description is not an unfair ad hominem attack; his soulless, sickening servility to the intelligence establishment notwithstanding.)
It’s what’s missing and unexplored that gives us pause. For instance, the FBI is presented as dogged, relentless pursuers of King’s killer despite the fact that J. Edgar Hoover despised MLK. Hoover once wrote a letter to King imploring King to cease his bestial sexual perversions or commit suicide. (I do not know if Hoover wrote this letter while dressed in woman’s clothing and in the arms of his homosexual lover, but one can speculate.) Hoover’s FBI was more likely to pin a medal on King’s murderer than apprehend him. In fact, the arrest of James Earl Ray took months, supposedly because Ray was a master criminal who deftly used many aliases and false documents to evade capture. The truth is, Ray was a petty criminal with a low IQ who could not cross the street without help from powerful interests. Moreover, much like Lee Harvey Oswald, he had no known motive for killing King. Ray’s own brother swore that James Earl was no racist.
There are other problems. How did Ray know where King was staying in Memphis on April 4, 1968? With a police dragnet surrounding the Lorraine Motel, how did Ray, presumably with rifle in hand, rent a room a short distance from the Lorraine without arousing suspicion? Immediately after King was shot, how did Ray escape the police dragnet so easily? What were military intelligence officers and FBI agents doing in the immediate vicinity of the Lorraine as the shot rang out? (Even the slithery Posner admits shadowy government agents were in the area.) Why did these agents and law enforcement run away from the flop house from which the shot was fired, even as all those near King were pointing directly at the flop house as the source of the shot?
Ray supposedly escaped in the most recognized and noticeable vehicle of the day, a white 1966 Ford Mustang, yet no Memphis cop or FBI agent saw it evade the many roadblocks thrown up just minutes after the assassination. The AHC documentary claims that a kid on a CB radio misled authorities. Sounds more like the Keystone Kops were running the investigation. Or maybe there was no genuine effort to catch anyone.
Ray was finally identified and detained two months later on the day after RFK died in Los Angeles. Ray, who spent time in LA before the King murder, might have been a roving patsy. A rootless nobody with low-level intelligence connections unwittingly waiting for his puppeteers to pin a murder on him. These wandering CIA patsies did exist. Lee Harvey Oswald was the most prominent one. There were others–Gordon Novell, Thane Eugene Cesar, Gerry Patrick Hemming, and Thomas Arthur Vallee to name just a few.
The bottom line is this: If you believe it is mere coincidence that the three most powerful voices on the left in the 1960s were all gunned down by lone gunmen without any tangible motive, you are quite naïve. Or you are a Posner.