It’s been a bit longer than I expected before getting back here to post again. The good news is that I have now completed my draft of the book I’ve been working on for some two years – an exploration of the practices and pitfalls of American covert convert warfare over some 70 years to the present. Still lots to do on it but the bulk of the research and writing is done, some 18 chapters and well over 400 pages I’m estimating.  But just as I finished that I came down with a couple of types of winter illnesses and that’s kept me away for a bit too.

Anyway, I promised that with this being the 50th anniversary year, I’d offer a few more posts on the murder of President Kennedy. One question that I’m often asked, is when do I feel the conspiracy actually started – which leads to an conditional answer because we know that there really were multiple efforts in play which involved targeting JFK. One that Stu and I write about in The Awful Grace of God is the recruiting and training of very covert rifle teams with the goal of carrying out attacks on high government and financial leaders. That conspiracy is quite well documented and involved rifle teams training in both California and Florida, it leaked to the FBI and actually a leak about a National States Rights party threat to the President came out of San Antonio during the Texas trip.

So, when I answer the question (and the answer seems not to satisfy most who ask it) I try to isolate the Dallas plot and attack from other things being planned by different groups.  And that leads me to Lee Oswald and the fact that Oswald had been manipulated for some sort of incident related to JFK on the East Coast, which was supposed to happen in September.  The first report we had of that was from Richard Case Nagell, who offered it based on what he said was his personal observation of people recruiting Oswald while he was in New Orleans. Interesting on the face of it but even more so when we come up with two completely independent sources of corroboration.  The first, is the report from a young lady whose mother was helping Marina pack to move out of New Orleans back to Dallas.  The young woman reported that while her mother was with Marina, Oswald was chatting her up (pretty consistent for Lee) and talking about going back to Washington D.C.  He was pretty vague about the trip but when pressed he blurted out that he had to go back there to get a gun…which she thought pretty strange.  This incident and the researcher who interviewed the young woman are covered in SWHT.

But beyond that, we have something far more solid.  We have a series of letters that Oswald wrote to the SWP and CPUSA about moving back to the East Coast, volunteering his services and even asking if he should “go underground”.  Pretty incriminating stuff actually, not highlighted by the WC due to its rather explosive nature I suppose. Or perhaps because the WC also had to deal with Oswald’s manuscript written earlier – which expresses his total disgust with the CPUSA.  Comparing the letters with the manuscript might have raised some dangerous questions about his real motives.

So….the first part of my answer to the question of when “it” started is – August in New Orleans, but with Washington D.C. as the venue and Oswald as the patsy.  Which suggests that the plot for Dallas started once the D.C. action aborted and it became extremely likely that Lee would be in Dallas for the birth of his new baby daughter, during the same period  in which the President would be traveling to Texas.


About Larry Hancock

Larry Hancock is a leading historian-researcher in the JFK assassination. Co-author with Connie Kritzberg of November Patriots and author of the 2003 research analysis publication titled also Someone Would Have Talked. In addition, Hancock has published several document collections addressing the 112th Army Intelligence Group, John Martino, and Richard Case Nagell. In 2000, Hancock received the prestigious Mary Ferrell New Frontier Award for the contribution of new evidence in the Kennedy assassination case. In 2001, he was also awarded the Mary Ferrell Legacy Award for his contributions of documents released under the JFK Act.

5 responses »

  1. Winston Smith says:

    Larry, good post as usual. I did not remember about the incident of the young woman who was chatted up by Oswald. Is that in the 2nd edition of SWHT or only the first? I only have the 2nd ed of the book but don’t remember that, although its been a few years since I read it. I also think it is very telling how the more time goes on, the more information surfaces that seems to independently corroborate the information that Richard Nagell came out with. To me, it just points more and more to his credibility as one of THE most important witnesses in the case. One, who the professional ‘debunkers’ have not been able to debunk. Or not successfully imo. Do you happen to know if Dick Russell is planning an update to TMWKTM for the 50th anniversary?

    • Hi Winston, the material about the young woman is in the third, 2010 paperback edition, in Chapter 3 page 47. I honestly don’t know whether it is in the second, hardcover, edition but I think not. You should check Chapter 3, They Came from New Orleans though. There is also an extensive end note on it in the 2010 edition; the research was done by Greg Parker who interviewed the woman personally. Lots of good stuff in the footnote and clearly something going with Oswald at that point
      which the WC would not have wanted to pursue.

      As to Nagell, yes, virtually everything we continue to dig up validates his basic story of Oswald being recruited; and also about Nagell’s activities in Mexico. You probably know that we have come up with a good circumstantial case for CIA officer Hecksher as BOB and Dick writes about him extensively in his most recent book…I get to claim credit for the initial find

      I think Dick put everything new in his more recent book and I don’t know if he will update the Nagell book or not – he is going to be coming to the Lancer conference in November and I am in touch with him so I’ll see if I can get an answer on that.

      — Larry

  2. Winston Smith says:

    Thanks Larry. Ah, that explains it then – I don’t have the 3rd edition of the book, only the 2nd. 🙂 I must get around to getting it as I would like to know more about this story. Yes, I had heard of Hecksher being Bob – does seem a very good fit. Shame that Nagell never got to testify before the ARRB before his death – but then I don’t believe his death was an accident…..

    • Winston, I’m not sure about Nagell’s death but it became pretty apparent in the follow up that a concerted effort had
      been made to pinpoint the various items he had cached which would have corroborated his story. The instance of his
      sister’s house being visited by the FBI seeking material and then it going missing in a break in immediately afterwards
      (with nothing else missing) is only one example. Question is, were they really FBI agents, my guess is not but rather
      CIA office of security.

      The effort went on over several years and at several locations. We do know that Nagell reached some accommodation with
      the Agency in order for help getting his kids back. The question is whether or not he knowingly surrendered certain
      material as part of that? The clean up and containment going on around Nagell should be written up as a classic case
      of security practice….of course its only one example of the effort to sanitize any of the many links that would have
      connected Oswald to the intelligence community.

      — Larry

  3. DConway says:

    I sent it out to Twitter and Facebook.


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