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25074Senator Wayne Morse was first member of Congress to be told by JFK that he was pulling out of Viet Nam

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  • Mark Robinowitz
    Nov 18, 2013
      where would "permaculture" be today if the Cold War and the nuclear arms race had ended in Kennedy's second term?
      -- Mark

      documents from JFK's 1963 decision to withdraw from Viet Nam

      from JFK and the Unspeakable: Why he died and why it matters by James Douglass
      about the Kennedy - Morse meeting of November 12, 1963:

      Senator Wayne Morse came to the White House to see the president about his education bills. Kennedy wanted to talk instead about Vietnam -- to his most vehement war critic. Morse had been making two to five speeches a week in the Senate against Kennedy on Vietnam. JFK took Morse out into the White House Rose Garden to avoid being overheard or bugged by the CIA.
      The president the startled Morse by saying: "Wayne, I want you to know you're absolutely right in your criticism of my VIetnam policy. Keep this in mind. I'm in the midst of an intensive study which substantiates your position on Vietnam. When I'm finished, I want you to give me half a day and come over and analyze it point by point."
      Taken aback, Morse asked the president if he understood his objections.
      Kennedy said, "If I don't understand your objections by now, I never will."
      JFK made sure Morse understood what he was saying. He added, "Wayne, I've decided to get out. Definitely!"
      Yet a mind needs hands to carry out its intentions. A president's hands are his staff and extended government bureaucracy. As Kennedy knew, when it came down to the nitty-gritty of carrying out his decision to end the Vietnam War, his administrative hands were resistant to doing what he wanted them to do, especially his Pentagon hands. He also knew that to withdraw from Vietnam "after I win the election" in the fall of 1964, he now had to inspire his aides to continue moving the machinery for withdrawal that he activated on October 11 with National Security Action Memorandum 263."

      "In JFK and the Unspeakable  Jim Douglass has distilled all the best available research into a very well-documented and convincing portrait of President Kennedy's transforming turn to peace, at the cost of his life.  Personally, it has made a very big impact on me.  After reading it in Dallas, I was moved for the first time to visit Dealey Plaza.  I urge all Americans to read this book and come to their own conclusions about why he died and why -- after fifty years -- it still matters.” 
      -- Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.

      This statement is itself historic: the first time any member of the Kennedy family has publicly endorsed a book that attributes President Kennedy's assassination to a conspiracy involving the military-intelligence establishment of the U.S. government. But what sets Douglass's book apart from the many treatments of Kennedy's assassination is his methodical case for the reasons behind it: to thwart the President's extraordinary turn toward peace, especially his back-channel negotiations with Nikita Khrushchev to dismantle the Cold War. So, elements of his own government viewed the President as a dangerous traitor, one to be eliminated.
      Only by remembering this story can we take up the challenge that Kennedy left unfinished—the challenge to make peace our legacy for generations yet unborn.

      "With penetrating insight and unswerving integrity, Douglass proves the fundamental truths about JFK's assassination . . . by far the most important book yet written on the subject."
      -- Gaeton Fonzi, former Staff Investigator, US House Select Committee on Assassinations

      "A stunning mix of political thriller and meticulous scholarship."
      -- Mark Lewis Taylor, Princeton Theological Seminary

      "An unfamiliar yet thoroughly convincing account of a series of creditable decisions of John F. Kennedy--at odds with his initial Cold War stance--that earned him the secret distrust and hatred of hard-liners among the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the CIA."
      -- Daniel Ellsberg, author, Secrets: A Memoir of the Vietnam War and the Pentagon Papers

      "Douglass writes with moral force, clarity, and the careful attention to detail that will make JFK and the Unspeakable a sourcebook for many years to come, for it provides us with the stubborn facts needed to rebuild a constitutional democracy within the United States."
      -- Marcus Raskin, co-founder, Institute for Policy Studies

      "This book should be required reading for every American citizen."
      -- Richard Falk, Milbank Professor of International Law Emeritus, Princeton University

      “Right now, I ask all of you--please, please, read JFK and the Unspeakable! I cried all night reading it, and didn’t sleep a wink. It is a book that could make us stand up and change the world, right now. Maybe we can save the world before it blows up. Really.”
      -- Yoko Ono

      In this fascinating and disturbing work, James Douglass presents a compelling account of the assasination of President John F. Kennedy and why unmasking and accepting this truth remains crucial for the future of our country and the world. The title comes from a phrase of Thomas Merton, naming of the attitudes, forces and interests that generate and support international tension and conflict.
      Drawing on a vast field of investigations, including many sources available only recently, Doulass lays out a sequence of of steps over the last three years of his life that transformed JFK from a traditional "Cold Warrior" to someone determined to pull the world back from the edge of nuclear apocalypse. Beginning with the fiasco of the Bay of Pigs invasion (which left the President wishing to "splinter the CIA in a thousand pieces"), followed by the Cuban Missile Crisis and his secret back-channel dialouges with Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev, JFK pursued a series of actions--right up to the week of his death--that caused members of his own U.S. military-intelligence establishment to regard him as a viritual traitor who had to be eliminated.
      As the 50th anniversary of Kennedy's assassination approaches, the story of why he was killed--his turn toward peace--is not ancient history, and bears crucial lessons for today in the light of a decade of war and continuing revelations of clandestine national security and military activities. Douglass shows convincingly how those who plotted the death of JFK were determined not simply to eliminate a single man but to kill a vision.
      Douglass's book has all the elements of a political thriller. But the stakes couldn't be higher. Only by understanding the truth behind the murder of JFK can we grasp his vision and assume the urgent struggle for peace today.
      James W. Douglass is a longtime peace activist and writer. He and his wife Shelley are co-founders of the Ground Zero Center for Nonviolent Action in Poulsbo, Washington, and Marys House, a Catholic Worker house of hospitality in Birmingham, Alabama. His books include The Nonviolent Cross, The Nonviolent Coming of God, and Resistance and Contemplation.

      read an excerpt:


      watch the Coalition on Political Assassinations conference in Dallas live on their website (Nov. 22 - 24, 2013)

      Jim Douglass on The Hope in Confronting the Unspeakable
in the Assassination of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy

Coalition on Political Assassinations Conference

      20 November 2009

      Dallas, Texas


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      Fourth Amendment, United States Constitution
      The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.