In my newest work, Tipping Point, I spend a good bit of time digging into Jack Ruby’s background and examining his most likely role(s) in the Dallas conspiracy. The plural form of “roles” is intentional given that his involvement changed dramatically during the afternoon of the assassination.

The good news is that we now know far more about his associations, connections, involvement in Cuban affairs and the manner in which he would have been brought into the conspiracy than the Warren Commission, or the House Select Committee on Assassinations ever exposed. The bad news is that Ruby was one of the most significant leads immediately available to investigation and the primary subject of the Warren Commissions only two field investigators. A recent exchange with fellow researcher Paul Bleau has prompted me to revisit investigators Griffin and Hubert and review what was and was not done in regard to investigating Jack Ruby in early 1964.

We do know that primary members of the Warren Commission were themselves concerned by the fact that their work almost entirely rested on the activities of the FBI, and that they were skeptical that Hoover would fully share information with them.  Their skepticism was justified, we can now document that the FBI itself destroyed evidence related to Lee Oswald, and in more than one case (as with the investigation of Sylvia Odio) Hoover’s responses to the Commission were totally at odds with the FBI’s own internal investigative reports.

Yet despite the commissioners own concerns, the Commission’s own investigators, Burt Griffin and Leo Hubert, were put into the field for only a limited time and separated from the inquiry well before their work was complete. They were tasked specifically with an inquiry into Jack Ruby and years later an HSCA interview with Griffin provided exceptional detail on how they were brought in, their tasking and generally the conditions under which they operated:

http://www.history-matters.com/archive/jfk/hsca/reportvols/vol11/pdf/HSCA_Vol11_WC_3F1_Griffin.pdf

(Specific citations to the document are noted in page numbers in the following)

Griffin’s testimony makes it clear that after a couple of months work neither he nor Griffin felt that the Commission considered Ruby of anything other than peripheral interest and that their investigation was not proceeding as they would like to have conducted it. Specifically Griffin noted that several of the inquiries they recommended were not conducted, a series of  requests were turned down – and that they were specifically advised that they much act “responsibly” or they could “trigger a thermonuclear war” (page 288 of the document linked above).

Interestingly that was not interpreted as a directive to conceal any information which might suggest foreign influence in a conspiracy, but rather in respect to the extreme consequences that anything of that nature had to be handled “very carefully” within the Commission itself.  (page 310)

A memorandum generated by them on May 14, 1964 (page 289) – and addressed to J. Lee Rankin – gives us a clear view of the investigation as Griffin and Hubert wanted to pursue it. Among their top priorities (Summary of Evidence Suggesting Further Investigation) were Ruby’s business activities beyond his Night Clubs (which they felt had not been sufficiently detailed), the possibility that some of his more obvious activities seemed to consume much time to little profit and might have actually served as covers for making money though illegal means, and finally that his ongoing interest and connections to Cuba demanded inquiry and clarification.  They also felt that while a variety of evidence showing Ruby’s interest in or connections to the John Birch Society had been treated as circumstantial, it had not been satisfactorily explained.

The Griffin/Hubert investigative memo is extremely detailed and specific, pointing out a host of “loose ends” which needed to be addressed in what was known and had been stated about Jack Ruby. It deserves to be read in detail by anyone with an interest in the Kennedy assassination.  

In his HSCA interview Griffin related that by May, 1964 there was considerable time pressure to wrap up their work on Ruby and that one intent of the memorandum was to relate how much work needed to be done which had not been up to that point in time. (page 205)  Griffin also noted that while the FBI had delved into Ruby’s Night Clubs, it had not pursued the other aspects outlined in their memorandum. Griffin had no recollection that the FBI ever did expand their work on Ruby nor that the two were allowed to complete the bulk of the investigative work they felt still remained to be pursued.

Griffin confirmed that they felt that Ruby’s Cuban connections and Oswald’s “Cuban interests in Dallas” had not been adequately explored – nor had the FBI been given much of a request to explore such connections and it was an area that was never “explored satisfactorily”. (page 205).  Even more specifically they believed, based on then available evidence, that Ruby was involved in illegal dealings with the Cuban elements who might have been in contact with Oswald. The existence of those dealings was a matter of “surmise” but the investigation had not focused on that area.

After the review of a number of other areas, most related to Ruby’s gambling and crime contacts, a fascinating exchange occurred in which Griffin was asked whether or not the memorandum might have “scared” some people and responded that it likely did so – and that had not been written for “flimsy reasons” and was intended to get attention. Griffin appears to think that it did get that attention because at that point nothing changed in terms of advancing the investigation of Ruby,  rather “the rug was pulled out from under it”.  (page 302)  

During the interview Griffin, then a Judge, attempted to be very precise in his wording, and relatively restrained. He did however affirm that he himself had not been satisfied with “the adequacy of the investigation of conspiracy”.

Researchers have long discussed other aspects of the two Ruby investigators, including the details of their separation and the fact that they were not brought back for the actual Commission interview and polygraph of Jack Ruby. Yet Griffin’s actual, extended testimony to the HSCA is much less frequently referenced.

If anything that testimony, and their internal WC memorandum, make it quite clear that even in the earliest months after the assassination they were looking in exactly the right places, and were keenly aware of where the inquiry should have gone – the fact that it did was not their fault. We certainly can’t pull together everything they might have learned at that point in time, but I suspect they would be quite interested in what we have learned in regard to their suspicions. And I’m sure they would not be surprised to find Jack Ruby appearing as a significant figure in an actual conspiracy scenario.   

12 responses »

  1. John F. Davies says:

    Interesting that throughout the existence of the Warren Commission, there were a number of occasions when the specter of a nuclear exchange was used to intimidate members of the group as well as investigators and witnesses. It is documented that the possibility of a nuclear war was the cudgel that Johnson used to force both Warren and Richard Russel sit on the body, and from testimony of Judge Griffin, apparently done to subordinates as well.
    Why was Johnson so obsessed with this terror?
    Partly because, as documented in “Surprise Attack”, he suspected that the assassination could be a prelude to a decapitation strike, with a nuclear exchange on the way. There are a number of times when he spoke of this to others both in Dallas and aboard Air Force One.

    And there is also the probability that LBJ was immediately informed of the heightened state of alert that the U.S. Military had placed itself in, and that some commands on their own initiative had their assets at DEFCON III. In many cases, such as with SAC and NORAD, readiness closer to DEFCON II. Recent documents also reveal that the Soviets, Cuba, and a number of other countries put their own military forces at readiness on 22 November.

    From the evidence we have, knowing Johnson’s agitated state of mind at the time, most likely he believed that his worst fears were coming to pass. He wanted therefore to do whatever was necessary to keep things from spinning out of control. And the most likely reason why word of the military response was kept quiet from the public, and official record of its occurrence minimized.

    That there was an actual near confrontation that weekend most likely stayed with Johnson throughout his Presidency, and though he himself privately never believed the Warren report, the memory of what may have been the next most dangerous moment of Cold War may have been a motivation to cover up the true facts behind Kennedy’s murder.

  2. larryjoe2 says:

    I’m afraid I’d have to disagree on this one. First off I find no evidence Johnson had ever really been briefed on the football, on strategic reaction or Presidential military command and control in general – but more importantly he made no effort at all to engage with any of those areas either at Parkland or on the flight back to DC. The extent of that neglect is pretty amazing…. This is something I look at and describe in great detail in SWHT and was one of the reasons I decided to do the work in Surprise Attack – to determine if his response was anomalous as compared to other such crises.

    And to a large extent it was, his contact with his military advisors on AF1 was virtually non existent, while he did communicate with SecDef it would have been hours after any decapitation strike was even a possibility (of course the same could be said for the high level military command as well – they don’t appear to have taken a decapitation strike as a serious option given their slow reaction time). Basically he just showed no real interest in any idea that what happened might have been related to military matters, all his calls, discussions and concerns were political.

    It is true that Johnson brought up “missiles flying” in a personal conversation on AF1 but it was in a very informal matter and he made no effort before or after that remark to actively determine if that were true or to assert any positive command and control.

    In timing his remarks related to a nuclear exchange, it appears to me that it was something that jelled beginning Friday evening and emerged full blown only over the weekend, when the evidence for conspiracy became increasingly visible at the highest levels. I see it more as a damage control tool, useful to contain emerging leads and investigations which would suggest conspiracy. As Griffin described it, a device to ensure that whatever emerged was contained, kept from the public and left strictly within the most senior decision makers discretion. as to any response.

  3. John F. Davies says:

    You are indeed correct about the timing. But its also likely that, with the state of shock that Johnson was in, this may have been a contributing factor in his neglecting to follow the command protocols. But there can be no doubt that Johnson was informed of the military’s status upon his return to Washington that evening. Knowing his state of mind at the time, it most likely confirmed his suspicions and like you say was used as a damage control tool to intimidate and direct any subsequent investigation.

    This was not the only time LBJ would use this as a means of intimidation. During the Vietnam War, every time military or civilian advisors pushed for more aggressive action, Johnson would immediately bring up the specter of a nuclear exchange as a way to silence any consideration of winning the war militarily, which was a deciding factor to America’s defeat there.

  4. larryjoe2 says:

    That raises another interesting thought about the timing, Manchester interviewed McNamara who said he had not really spoken to LBJ until meeting him on his arrival in DC – at that point LBJ greeted him with a general and low key remark on the order of “is anything happening” (paraphrase). I suspect SecDef might have quickly gone over the Pentagon’s response like elevation of DefCon, a special security alert for all facilities etc. That would have occurred before Johnson arrived back at the Capital and it was only then that he had Cliff Carter begin his calls to Texas ordering no charges of conspiracy and backing it up with national security.

    The conversation with McNamara may well have given Johnson (opportunist that he always was) a prompt to begin bringing in the geopolitical risk thing…which he didn’t really begin to leverage heavily until his first two ideas on stonewalling (just an FBI inquiry and report and following that a Texas Court of Inquiry). It was only when he was forced to create a commission and recruit Warren that he really stepped up the leverage of a nuclear war.

    I had not thought of it being quite that iterative but it makes a lot of sense…and as you say, once Johnson had used it then it became a standard for pushing back, even in Vietnam.

  5. GW Hail says:

    Hi Larry,

    I enjoyed reading your book excerpts from Tipping Point on Mary Ferrell’s website. I look forward to buying it and reading it.

    I have followed the Kennedy Assassination since 1967, have written a couple of blogs about the assassination and have been following Bill Kelly’s blog so I am familiar with many of the CIA-led Cuban activities involving the JMWAVE base in Miami. I also agree with your general premise of CIA-led guerrilla groups like Pathfinder as the primary assassin team.

    I did have three comments that I wanted to raise and get your feedback out of curiosity more than anything else:

    1. Regarding JD Tippit, you state that he stopped a vehicle driven by James Andrews on Tenth Street and looked in the backseat before he made the call at the Top Ten Record store.

    Everything I have read says that this stop happened after the call at the Top Ten Record visit. Which makes sense because according to Louis Cortinas, an employee, Tippit had parked his car facing north on Bishop adjacent to the record store and headed northbound then turned east on Sunset which was just a few blocks northbound on Bishop and the location of the vehicle stop was a few blocks west to his arrival later at 10th and Patton.

    Just curious what your source was for this version of Tippit’s movement.

    2. Back to Tippit, you state that he was on his phone call at the Top Ten record shop for 7-8 minutes.

    This is much longer than what I recall reading about in Dale Myers book “With Malice”. Myers quotes Louis Cortinas an employee of the record store as saying Tippit was on the phone long enough to let the phone ring 7-8 times before hurriedly leaving the store. It was clear to Cortinas that the brief amount of time Tippit allowed the phone to ring (7-8 times) indicated no one had answered.

    Myers wrote that Tippit came into the store at 1:11 pm and he was shot at 1:16 pm so just curious how you determined Tippit was on the phone for 7-8 minutes.

    3. At the end of Part Five The Conspiracy, you make a statement that the efforts to frame Oswald as the assassin and connect him to Castro were minimal and were not an effort that one would suspect from experienced CIA psychological operations specialists.

    George Joannides was CIA Chief of Psychological Warfare at the JMWAVE base in Miami who was in charge of the agency’s work with the DRE. We know it was the DRE who was one of the first sources to spread information of Oswald’s Pro-Castro communist ties attempting to blame Cuba for the assassination.

    How do you square your comment with the known evidence that it was the CIA who was disseminating the propaganda about Oswald linking him to Castro?

    Thanks for responding and can’t wait to buy and read your book as an added-value to my JFK assassination collection.

    G.W. Hail

  6. larryjoe2 says:

    Hi G.W. thanks for the questions – as to Tippit, a great deal of that commentary was taken directly from Chris Scalley’s detailed study of the Tippit encounters, published in the DPUK Journal. However I will need to return to that and to some work with a map to offer you a good response to your question on the timing of the car stop. That might have come from Chris, it might be that I didn’t follow his narrative correctly, or that I got it out of sequence – I’ll check.

    On you second point on the telphone call, that was my mistake and we caught it and its already been corrected for the book, it should have been stated as the time for Tippit to listen to 7-8 rings rather than stated as time in minutes. Good catch.

    The question of propaganda is clouded by timing issues as well. What I was trying to get across is that clearly by September, the DRE was already active in generating propaganda around Oswald as a Cuban/Communist dupe. Not only were they sending out media pieces on his activities in New Orleans but warning Congress about him – and other exile groups were using the same material. His interview had been recorded, transcribed and translated and was going into a variety of forms including a record produced by INCA, it would also be used by other anti-Communist groups.

    My supposition is that INCA was being was either being used as a cut out by the CIA or simply in “fellow traveler” mode as they had been previously. And in his new role with SAS, Phillips was being given a task in Central American propaganda that targeted Cuban influence channels such as the FPCC. My guess is that you had pre-assassination propaganda involving Oswald being developed within DRE (which was a major objective of their CIA funding), circulated by CIA propaganda channels including INCA and also by Phillip’s own private media channels (which I mention in Tipping Point but describe in more detail in SWHT) and compiled by the SAS/WAVE propaganda folks for ongoing use.

    Those would have all been legitimate, CIA day job activities and part of the ongoing SAS anti-Castro effort. However from the conspiracy participants view, it meant that they had not only a ready made patsy but knew of the existence of Oswald and body of material that was already in existence to support pointing the finger at Castro via Oswald immediately following the assassination – which DRE did, but not just DRE but other assets such as Phillips media buddy who started taking AP calls on Oswald that day. But in doing that what was used was not new material but information simply excerpted from what had occurred and been reported in New Orleans that summer.

    To boil it all down, a body of material on Oswald as a Castro supporter came into being that summer. A number of efforts were already underway to use it for propaganda purposes before the assassination – it was a ready made resource. The strange part is that nothing of any more substantial nature in terms of specific Oswald/Castro agent links was introduced after the assassination. We know the CIA professionals were quite capable of creating such materials and had access to a body of known Castro agent identities, movements, cut outs etc which could have been used to create such a linkage..one that would have really helped “sell” Castro sponsorship. But nothing like that surfaced – so either it was not developed or for some reason plans to introduce it came apart after the actual attack.

    I’ll look into the Tippit stop timing but it may take me a bit to pull the materials and do some map referencing again…

    • G.W. Hail says:

      Larry,

      Thank you for the response. I appreciate you taking time to respond.

      I have lived in Dallas for 25 years. For the past 24 years I’ve lived about 2 miles from Oswald’s boarding house on Beckley and of course just another 4/10’s a mile to Tippit’s murder at 10th and Patton.

      I’ve driven all over that neighborhood including recently when I was searching for Kay Coleman’s apartment and the “estate” Harry Olsen supposedly was “guarding”. Olsen is an interesting character and his testimony seems to be a perfect example of double talk. His story doesn’t seem to add up as just an innocent bystander.

      I first read about Tippit’s whereabouts from an Internet article back in the late 1990’s—“Car #10 Where Are You?” by Bill Drenas. He’s updated it to include new information.

      Later I met Malcolm Summers through my job and we became friends and I learned that he was an eyewitness to the assassination. I wrote a blog hailofbullets11221963.blogs pot.com about Malcolm’s experience and my thoughts on the assassination.

      One thing I found interesting was your summary on Ruby and what his role may have been as a support person and police contact. In that regard, the Oswald wallet found at the Tippit murder scene could be an example of how Ruby’s police contacts could’ve been used to plant incriminating evidence on Oswald. I read in your footnotes I believe that approximately 200-400 Dallas police officers were familiar with Ruby before the assassination. It’s funny that Dallas Police Chief Jesse Curry said in his book that he could only find 25 police officers who knew Ruby after the assassination. The Chief was obviously lowballing his teams familiarity with Ruby.

      I read recently that one of the officers who found the wallet was W.R. Westbrook who was the Internal Affairs Director for the Dallas Police. Of course this wallet disappeared and was never turned in as evidence nor was it ever noted in the Warren Commission.

      Fortunately, television footage from Dallas station WFAA was found many years later that showed the wallet being handled at the Tippit murder scene. An FBI agent at the scene claims Officer Westbrook had shown him the wallet and asked him if he had ever heard of Lee Harvey Oswald or Alek Hidell, two identification cards that were in the wallet.

      I had never heard of Westbrook but did find it interesting that he joined the USAID in Southeast Asia following the assassination. As you know, the USAID has long been a cover for CIA activities overseas. Westbrook’s background and activity at the Tippit murder scene would make sense as one of Ruby’s police assets that you refer to as his role.

      Also, Malcolm Summers encountered a man behind the Pergola area of the grassy knoll immediately following the gunshots in Dealey Plaza. He described the man in a suit and fedora hat with a top coat draped over his arm. When Malcolm approached him he opened up his topcoat and showed a long gun of some kind and told Malcolm that he shouldn’t come back up here or he might get shot or something to that effect. Malcolm later talked to a police profiler from Houston years later who drew the man from Malcolm’s 1963 eyewitness description. The profiler traced the drawing to Charles Nicoletti from Chicago and mafia member in Sam Giancana’s outfit.

      So that would match up with more people behind the grassy knoll who were stopping people and redirecting them. A role that Ruby could’ve provided these men in his support role or they were with the original assassin team to serve as spotters or people assigned to cover for the shooters as they escaped.

      At any rate good stuff and look forward to reading your book.

  7. larryjoe2 says:

    I am familiar with Bill’s article but as yet I have not been able to lay my hands on either his or Chris’s pieces…after doing a book it can be a challenge to relocate all the pieces used during a year or so. I did locate a recent article by John Armstrong on the shooting and while he does not mention that car stop his timeline does leave a larger hole after the record store where that would make sense. I’ll look further for Chris’s article, which should be online as well. Admittedly I was more interested in the implications of the car stop than the timing so I might indeed have gotten it out of sequence.

    My friend Ian Griggs did an immense amount of work on Westbrook – pointing out that he held a desk job and was not in the field routinely so his movements after the assassination are certainly an anomaly, is is his connection to the wallet issue. He job also put him in an interesting position of influence and information in regard to the DPD personnel. You might be interested in Ian’s article:

    Click to access Item%2010.pdf

    On Westbrook and AID, actually as a former police administrative officer Westbrook would have needed no cover and that position was quite a legitimate one in Vietnam at the time….not to mention that recruiting for civilian work there was getting increasingly tough at the time. Normally AID was used as a cover for actual CIA officers who needed a cover – David Morales worked in Vietnam at that time and did work under an AID cover. In any event, given Ruby’s focusing on contacts within the DPD certainly does make me wonder about Westbrook, as does the fact that at least one wallet in the whole affair apparently went though his office via officer Hill.

    I did talk with Malcolm Summers myself a couple of times, my recollection is he described something the encounter slightly differently but he was obviously sincere – my problem is that he did arrive after others had already entered the area and I really could not reconcile the purpose of trying to frighten him off at that point in time. At present I’m probably more interested in the unidentified individuals arriving a few minutes later at the rear of the TSBD who told an office or somehow indicated that they were Secret Service…that makes little sense for a variety of reasons but it further implies there were people in the area who had roles and agendas we don’t understand.

    • G.W. Hail says:

      Larry,

      Thank you for the reply and the link to the information about Westbrook. I look forward to reading it.

      Regarding the Tippit timeline, it has been a subject of much controversy. Even Drena’s article has some question marks about the timing of where Tippit was following the assassination because Tippit didn’t answer a radio call at 1:03 p.m. and likely gave a false location earlier based upon eye witnesses who saw him at the GLOCO gas station on Zang Boulevard. It probably doesn’t matter the exact chronology of his movements at that point. I just think it makes more sense he headed north after the Top Ten Record phone call since the witnesses said his car was parked along Bishop Avenue facing north and Sunset is the next street past Jefferson and they noted he turned east on Sunset which would have him headed directly toward where he was later shot. Sunset actually ends at Beckley so he would’ve turned north to hit Tenth Street so that would have been where he would’ve noticed Andrews car if that’s the direction he took.

      Malcolm was a dear friend who took me under his wing and shared many experiences at the Sixth Floor Museum at events he would be invited to attend over the years. We attended the Jack Ruby Trial session where Judge Brown’s son was interviewed and Malcolm introduced me to many people involved such as James Leavelle, the Newman family, Hugh Aynesworth, Murphy Martin and some FBI men who were investigating the assassination who still attended such events. He also invited me to breakfast at Austin’s Barbecue which is where Tippit moonlighted on the weekends as a security guard. I still have a menu from Austin’s somewhere.

      He never really talked much about conspiracy but was very concerned about the profiler’s work on his description indicating that it was a known mafia figure. He did take me and my wife to the spot in the grass where he was standing when President Kennedy was hit by the fatal head shot. He described a “hail of bullets” which I thought was odd for just one bullet according to the Warren Commission. However, I did read that Secret Service agent Roy Kellerman basically described the same thing in his Warren Commission testimony when he described the final shot as a “flurry of shells” entering the limousine.

      On a lighter note, I have an original Jack Ruby Carousel card framed on my Man Cave wall. A neighbor responded to a fundraising letter for my daughter’s school back in the 2000’s and gave us the card for our silent auction. He had kept it all of those years and donated it. He even gave us an article from The Dallas Morning News that highlighted a work of art featured in the Dallas Museum of Art of the actual card. Of course, I was the winning bidder at $700!

      I also appreciate your lead on the Burt Griffin memo you mention. I look forward to reading it.

      Thanks again,

      G.W.

  8. larryjoe2 says:

    On a lighter note as well, I’ve always enjoyed visiting Campesi’s, seeing the Ruby “booth” and visiting with one lady who was familiar with the era when Jack there. I have one of the Carousel cards as well…collected way too many mementos over the years.

    One of the things I barely mention in Tipping Point but expand a bit on in SWHT was Tippit’s connection to a Spanish language theater in Dallas where he also did some off hours security work. Lots of rumors about that but it can be shown that people associated with the theatre did have some social links to the House on Harlandale which had visitors who knowingly or unknowingly were associated with the attack in Dallas.

    Its also pretty frustrating once you trace the leads and see that the FBI wrote off their investigation of that based on feedback on a source who should more likely have been viewed as a suspect…

    • G.W. Hail says:

      Yes, I’ve just recently discovered the theater as well as a nightclub across the street that Tippit also worked during my internet browsing.

      They both were located off of Fort Worth Avenue and Hampton. One was located in the old Stevens Park Village.

      The Burt Griffin info is interesting. He was definitely stonewalled diving into Ruby’s background. I read somewhere that a higher up FBI person stifled his investigation into Ruby, especially his Cuban connections. Not sure where I read that.

      I also read the HSCA deposition of Alex Gruber. What a piece of work. His testimony sounds like he went to the same testimony-school as Ralph Paul and Harry Olsen, two of Ruby’s other “friends” Ruby talked to after the assassination.

      I had never heard of Gruber before reading your blog. He seems to be a very old-school, street-wise hoodlum from Ruby’s youth in Chicago. He just shows up in Dallas two weeks before the assassination and pays Ruby a visit. He said he hadn’t seen Ruby in 10 years. Then he is one of the first people Ruby calls on Friday after the assassination. Gruber said they talked about Ruby sending him a dog! Ruby’s dogs pop up again as alibis! Then he reportedly talked to Ruby on Sunday morning.

      It’s contacts like Gruber, Paul and Olsen that make you think Ruby was more than another lone-nut assassin!

      The Cuban connection is a very strong one. I wish Griffin could’ve pursed those connections for both Oswald and Ruby.

  9. larryjoe2 says:

    I did blog about the two WC investigators assigned to Ruby and Griffin gave an extended statement to the HSCA which is fascinating. Basically they presented a proposal for some very focused investigation of Ruby, with special attention to his Cuban connections and what they susp0ected were side businesses that he covered with silly stuff like the twist board. But by the time they had prepared that proposal the WC really was beginning to close down things in spring and he makes it clear that the reason they did the proposal was because they felt there was an attitude to take a pass on Ruby. The proposal was an effort to prod further investigation but it didn’t happen and they both simply separated, convinced there much of what they had listed and outlined was going to be left hanging – which it was. He portrays that as being not so much driven inside the WC staff as coming pressure from higher up.

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