HAPPENING NOW

DECEMBER 4, 2019

TRC founder and Chairman Emeritus DAVID TALBOT and board member JEFFERSON MORLEY on the 50th anniversary of FRED HAMPTON's death

 

It was 50 years ago today that a Chicago police hit squad, acting in coordination with Illinois state prosecutors and the FBI, burst into the apartment of 21-year-old Black Panther leader Fred Hampton and assassinated him while he was asleep in bed next to his pregnant wife. Overshadowed by all the government violence in the 1960s, this cold-blooded execution remains largely unknown by Americans. But at the time, Fred Hampton was a rising star on the American Left who embraced a "rainbow coalition" vision, uniting all races for radical change. As Jefferson Morley writes here, the charismatic young leader could have become a major change agent in American history.

But FBI chief J. Edgar Hoover was determined to use the bureau's notorious counterintelligence program -- COINTELPRO -- to "neutralize" promising radical leaders. Imagine what a different country we would live in today if the likes of Hampton, Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X and the Kennedy brothers had not been eliminated by U.S. death squads!

-David Talbot

RIP Fred Hampton: A Black Visionary Assassinated by the FBI

by Jefferson Morley

NOVEMBER 22, 2019

Speech by TRC signer and author Dick Russell at the JFK Memorial in Dealey Plaza

It is an honor to be asked to stand here today and speak to you about John F. Kennedy, the 35th president of the United States. Fifty-six years since he was brutally murdered in this space, it remains a tragedy that is painful to speak about. For what we lost that day is yet an open wound from which our country has never recovered – because of the promise that John F. Kennedy’s time in office carried, and also because the truth has never been told about what happened to him here in Dealey Plaza.

I came of age during the 1960s, a Kansas City kid whose whole life had revolved around sports Suddenly with that rainy weekend when I was sixteen, nothing would ever be the same. When the three other great leaders of that era were also cut down in their prime – Malcolm X in 1965, Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert Kennedy in 1968 – the hope of a different kind of America, one in which meaningless wars became obsolete and impoverished citizens got a chance to succeed, died with them. Lies superseded honesty. Corruption superseded compassion.

John F. Kennedy and his comrades-in-arms were great men because they were willing to grow as human beings, to change not only their minds but open their hearts. None of us would be here today, had not the Kennedy brothers been willing to put aside ideology during the Cuban Missile Crisis and face down the mad generals who would have driven us into the abyss of nuclear holocaust. Like each of us, the brothers had their human flaws. But their integrity and courage far outweighed these lesser character traits. What JFK came to stand for created powerful enemies, who felt justifiably threatened by a newer world that the Kennedys and their African-American brethren were seeking. So, one by one, they were eliminated. Not by “lone nuts,” as the big media would have us believe – but by organized groups out to keep their power intact.

As an investigative journalist and the author of several books on the assassination of President Kennedy, I have come to the conclusion that we were all the victims of a coup whose reverberations continue to this day. A young man named Oswald was set up to take the fall for a cabal that included rogue CIA, far-right military, extremist Cuban exiles, wealthy industrialists, and Mob gangsters. This coup was ingeniously orchestrated, pointing a false finger at Cuba and the Soviet Union in order to ensure a massive cover-up by our own government. While dozens of witnesses have been silenced, hundreds of incriminating documents have also been destroyed or withheld from public scrutiny.

The extremes that we are seeing from the current administration in Washington, with its intimidation of witnesses and refusal to turn over evidence legally sought by a congressional inquiry, is unfortunately a natural outgrowth of what began on November 22, 1963. Perhaps, as Malcolm X famously said that day, the chickens are coming home to roost. Amid the chaos of these times, we would do well to remember the words of John F. Kennedy, addressing the American Newspaper Publishers Association on April 27, 1961, early in his presidency and ten days after he was deceived by the CIA at the Bay of Pigs invasion.

JFK: “The very word ‘secrecy’ is repugnant in a free and open society, and we are as a people inherently and historically opposed to secret societies, to  secret oaths and to secret proceedings. We decided long ago that the dangers of excessive and unwarranted concealment of pertinent facts far outweighed the dangers which are cited to justify it. Even today, there is little value in opposing the threat of a closed society by imitating its arbitrary restrictions. Even today, there is little value in insuring the survival of our nation if our traditions do not survive with it. And there is very grave danger that an announced need for increased security will be seized upon by those anxious to expand its meaning to the very limits of official censorship and concealment. That I do not intend to permit to the extent that it is in my control….

“No President should fear public scrutiny of his program. For from that scrutiny comes understanding; and from that understanding comes support or opposition….

“Without debate, without criticism, no Administration and no country can succeed – and no republic can survive. That is why the Athenian lawmaker Solon decreed it a crime for any citizen to shrink from controversy.”

That legacy is still our responsibility – to fight for a better world for our children and future generations even when the odds may sometimes seem insurmountable. A great psychological thinker, James Hillman, who was among the founders of the Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture, once said: “What do you do when the ship is going down? I may want to get in the lifeboat and leave – but there is no place to go, there is no other shore. So you still do all the things that make the day in dignity and honor. You  do the work, whatever the work is. It’s touching the world, keeping in touch with what needs to be held, touched, felt, noticed.”

So let those of us who are elders strive to do this, as we pass the torch to a new generation. A generation with young people like the ones from Parkland High School who, amid their grief for lost friends, organized the inspiring march against gun violence in Washington. A generation with young people like Greta Thunberg from Sweden who, amid their grief for our planet, are sounding an eloquent and impassioned call to take immediate action toward changing our agricultural, industrial and energy systems to combat climate change. The social justice that those four men of the Sixties believed in and gave their lives for can and MUST become what we fight for today.

We stand on a precipice, our democracy that was once an example for free nations of the world in grave jeopardy. As we contemplate a world begging for our attention, on so many different levels, let us remember these words of President John F. Kennedy:

 

“We are not here to curse the darkness, but to light the candle that can guide us thru that darkness to a safe and sane future.”
Thank you.

- Dick Russell

PLEASE SUPPORT JFKCOUNTERCOUP - BK

SEPTEMBER 26, 2019

Dr. Robert McClelland, one of the most important witnesses to the assassination of JFK died recently.

Dr. Robert McClelland, Who Tried to Save President Kennedy, Dies at 89 

THE NEW YORK TIMES, September 2019

RIP: Dr. Robert McClelland, the most important JFK witness

jfkfact.org, September 2019

SEPTEMBER 14, 2019

Robert F Kennedy was assassinated by Thane Eugene Cesar declares RFK, Jr, who says it was the security guard who fatally shot his father from behind after planning the murder with Sirhan Sirhan.  DAILY MAIL, September 2019

SEPTEMBER 1, 2019

 

We were deeply disturbed to hear that Sirhan Sirhan, the man the evidence shows was falsely imprisoned for the murder of Bobby Kennedy, was attacked and stabbed in prison on Friday. He is alive but his condition is unknown. We will post updates to our website as we learn more.

For more information: (https://www.justice-integrity.org/news-reports) initial reactions to Sirhan’s stabbing from experts in the research community.

JULY 28, 2019

 

The JFK assassination is one of the most widely investigated -- yet paradoxically poorly understood -- major events in American history. The reason for this is willful blindness, ignorance and self-interest in carrying the preferred narrative. Shocking fact: The corporate media’s claims on this consistently run counter to what an army of experts of all kinds have actually found. On almost every front, when the public is presented with established facts, from FBI interviews, documents, testimony, it concludes that Kennedy was the victim of an organized operation, not a “lone nut.” (Thus it was entirely consistent with long-standing, documented and well-known US policy of supporting the violent removal of world leaders who were seen as not in line with establishment views, goals and priorities.)

However, members of the working press, like university professors and other so-called “experts”, have been for half a century under pressure to promote the “official story” that was put out by the government right from the start. There never was any intent to seriously investigate what happened. A premium was placed on preserving order, keeping the public calm, and making sure the system churned on. This is not only true of the assassination of John F. Kennedy. Many major events, including the assassinations of other leading individuals, were also swept under the rug. That this happened, and is still covered up more than half a century later, reminds us that all is not well in America. Unless the truth is known about how we got where we are today, we cannot truly claim to be in control of our destiny.

The compulsory "lone nut" ideology, applied after every single assassination or assassination attempt against a prominent American,  is as blatantly false -- and yet as feverishly embraced by the media and academic establishments -- as climate change denial by the fossil fuel lobby.

 

A Truth & Reconciliation Committee, composed of a broad and diverse group of historians, authors, researchers, and public figures, aims to address this crisis, specifically calling for the reopening of investigations into the JFK, MLK Jr., Malcolm X and RFK assassinations, Americantruthnow.org.

JUNE 10, 2019

THE SPEECH THAT KILLED JOHN F. KENNEDY

 

On June 10th, 1963,  in a speech at American University, President Kennedy asked his fellow citizens to learn to live with their worst enemy. 

 

Taught for decades to hate and fear Soviet Russia as a matter of national faith, locked in a cold war that almost destroyed the world eight months earlier during the Cuban Missile Crisis, the President nevertheless asked us to reexamine our attitudes towards the Russians, the arms race, and “the most important topic on earth: world peace.”

 

Not a peace "enforced on the world by American weapons of war,” he said.  "I am talking about genuine peace, the kind of peace that makes life on earth worth living…not merely peace for Americans but peace for all men and women…”

 

He reminded us that Russia had lost at least 20 million people in the fight against Nazism, a staggering sacrifice that the United States and the European Union recently ignored as they commemorated the seventy-fifth anniversary of D-Day without inviting the Russians. 

 

Kennedy pointed out that both Russia and the U.S. were allocating “massive sums of money to weapons that could be better devoted to combating ignorance, poverty, and disease.”

 

He argued that war no longer made any sense in an age where “the deadly poisons produced by a nuclear exchange would be carried by wind and water and soil and seed to generations yet unborn.”

 

He proposed and later signed a treaty to ban atmospheric testing of nuclear weapons as a step toward “total and complete disarmament.”

 

In short he proposed an end to the Cold War.  In so doing, he signed his death warrant.

In a country that had become a military empire in all but name, John Kennedy’s words and actions constituted nothing short of treason.  Or so we know it seemed to the generals, admirals, covert operators and military contractors whose power derives from creating tensions, not easing them; in developing enemies, not disarming them.  Ever since the Missile Crisis, in back-channel communications with the Soviets, Kennedy had been doing exactly what the defense establishment feared most: waging peace.  

 

Their disdain for Kennedy’s peace overtures was so well known that it inspired a best-selling novel, Seven Days in May, the story of a military coup against a president who was too willing to negotiate.  Kennedy thought the book so relevant and the threat to democracy so acute he encouraged director John Frankenheimer to make it into a movie.

 

In his American University address, the President chided the Russians for suggesting that “American imperialist circles are preparing to unleash different types of wars . . . the political aims of the American imperialists are to enslave economically and politically the European and other capitalist countries . . .[and] to achieve world domination . . . by means of aggressive wars."

 

But as history has shown, the Russians were right. “Imperialist circles” in the U.S. were planning for war, first in Vietnam, then Latin America, Africa and the Middle East.  The major obstacle standing in their way was the President himself.  

 

Five months later in Dallas, Texas, those  same forces murdered him in a coup, about which there is little actual mystery. 

 

On this 56th anniversary of President Kennedy’s American University peace speech, as Pentagon war planners seek to reignite the deadly tensions of the Cold War,  sign the petition to demand a true reckoning with the four assassinations that led directly to our current national predicament. Listen to the entire American University address and remember that “wherever we are, we must all, in our daily lives, live up to the age-old faith that peace and freedom walk together.”

JUNE 6TH, 2019

D-DAY and RFK

On June 6th, 1944, Allied forces landed on the beaches of Normandy for the final assault on Hitler's armies.  Thousands of American soldiers arrived on the battered coast of Europe that day, carrying with them the hope of a new world, free from want and fear.

 On June 6th, 1968, the last American leader to embody that hope died, the victim of assassination.

 

Robert Francis Kennedy had announced his presidency on a platform that would seem bizarre to us today:  "I run to seek new policies - policies to end the bloodshed in Vietnam and in our cities, policies to close the gaps that now exist between black and white, between rich and poor, between young and old––in this country and around the rest of the world. I run for the presidency because I want the United States of America to stand for hope instead of despair, for reconciliation...instead of the growing risk of world war."

 

Three months later he would be dead, the last in a series of four history-distorting assassinations that began with his brother, the president, and carried on through human rights champions Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr.

 

The spirit that stormed the beaches of France in 1944 had grown sick.  Dwight D. Eisenhower had led the United States to victory against the Nazis; by 1961, he felt compelled to warn his fellow countrymen that a “military-industrial complex” had actually won the day and now posed a mortal threat to democracy.

 

Seven years and a string of political murders later, up to our necks in the bloodbath of Vietnam, the inner-cities in rebellion, the needs of millions of poor Americans ignored, Robert Kennedy tried to shake us out of our sickness: "We cannot continue to deny and postpone the demands of our own people, while spending billions in the name of freedom elsewhere around the globe"

 

This June 6th, remember the spirit of hope that won in Europe and the last soldier to die in its defense at home, Robert Francis Kennedy.    

 

Sign the petition, and help revive the spirit.