Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The Harold Weisberg Archive has many items on the MLK case.  One of which is his unpublished manuscript "Whoring for History."  However, it's difficult to find as it's not really listed under that title.
If you look under the folder "Weisberg Manuscript and Books," you will see Posner (MLK).  That is the book, "Whoring for History," a response to Gerald Posner's BS book.   

Martin Hay's review of Wexler - Hancock book

My friend Martin Hay has written an excellent review of the God awful [deleted] that is the Wexler - Hancock book.  It's here.   

Monday, June 25, 2012

Update on the bathtub

A reader sent me some info on the original bathtub that according to the official story James Earl Ray stood in when he fired the fatal shot that killed Dr. King.  It was bought by a judge, D'Army Bailey.  Bailey is the founder of The National Civil Rights Museum. Bailey bought it in 1983 when the former rooming house was being renovated. Bailey then sold it on Ebay in 2006.  The winning bid came from an online casino, "Golden Palace." (They sound like a Chinese restaurant.)  There is a short article about that here.  They have a photo of the tub which shows the sloping angle at the rear of the tub.

Residents of New York state are not even allowed to access the's website.  So, that's a BIG CLUE as to how reputable they are. 

MSNBC had an article on this.  However, the photo accompanying their story shows a bathtub which is clearly NOT the original tub.  This bathtub was photographed in 2002, after the Civil Rights Museum bought the rooming house property and turned that room into an exhibit.  This bathtub is still there.  

The caption for this photo reads:

The bathtub from which James Earl Ray shot the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., 
seen in its location in September 2002, as part of the expansion of the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, Tenn.

This tub cannot be in Judge D'Army Bailey's private hands and in the museum exhibit at the same time.


Wednesday, April 18, 2012

The Wexler - Hancock book, It gets worse

Well, we already know this book is total BS based on a totally false premise. Wexler finds the notion of a conspiracy in the MLK assassination personally distasteful to him so he serves up something more palatable, to him.  It's a valentine to G. Robert Blakey's back-up story to still have a lone assassin, James Earl Ray, do it, but, if you need more, we'll introduce you to a KKK group, The White Knights of Mississippi and say they were really behind it. Wexler's false premise is that The White Knights of Mississippi are behind nearly every racial incident and killing throughout the South, throughout the entire Civil Rights era in hopes that their target Dr. King will come to town in response and lead a march or something, and then they can blow his head off.  This is THE FALSE PREMISE of the book and Wexler and Hancock try to feed it, and support it, and nurture it on every page in hopes that you'll swallow this shit. 

How bad is this book?  Chapter 1, in a subsection; all these chapters have several subsections, big bold type setting off a section; there is one ironically called, "Manufacturing a Pretext."  

I couldn’t make that up if I tried.  

In this subsection there is some basic information telling you that Dr. King went to Missisippi after the attempted murder of James Meredith in 1966, and then it tells you who James Meredith is. "...the man who had desegregated the University of Mississippi by being the first black student to apply to and attend the school on 1962 and who in 1966 was leading his March Against Fear to encourage Blacks to register to vote despite racial intimidation."

Okay, so this information on Meredith is basic historical information that could come from many various sources, school textbooks, encyclopedias, newspapers, magazines, even Google.  

What's the source they choose?  What is the one, and only source they use to back that up?

Michelle Malkin!  Michelle - RIGHT-WING-NUTCASE Malkin!

Michelle Malkin, "Remembering an American Insurrection" Townhall, September 27, 2002.

Why do they choose her? Well, let’s read it and see.   

Forty years ago this month, a lone black man named James Meredith faced off against an angry mob of thousands of white segregationists on the campus of the University of Mississippi. After a violent clash that left two people dead, 48 American soldiers injured, and 30 U.S. Marshals with gunshot wounds, a dignified Meredith sat in the registrar's office with stunned college officials and signed the forms that led to the historic integration of a fiercely resistant Ole Miss. The incident, dubbed the Battle of Oxford, is mostly ignored in public school history texts. But as author and documentarian William Doyle describes it, the showdown was "the biggest domestic military crisis of the twentieth century" and a pivotal moment in the civil rights movement. Doyle's gripping and meticulously researched book, "An American Insurrection: The Battle of Oxford, Mississippi, 1962," recounts Meredith's brave stand against Mississippi's Democrat governor Ross Barnett, the state police, the Ku Klux Klan, students and bloodthirsty rabble-rousers who took up guns, clubs, bricks and bottles in their bid to prevent a fellow American citizen from getting a college education. On Meredith's first day of class, the stinging smell of tear gas filled the air. Some 30,000 federal troops had been sent to quell the uprising against Meredith's presence. "I was more frightened at Mississippi than I was at Pearl Harbor or any other time during the war," one U.S. Marshal told Doyle. Meredith himself never showed fear. He walked past blood-stained hallways, endured hate-filled taunts from his fellow students and sat down unflappably for his first lecture: "The Beginnings of English Colonization." On August 18, 1963, at a graduation ceremony with 16 federal marshals monitoring the crowd, Meredith received a bachelor of arts degree in political science. Three years later, while on a one-man march from Memphis to Jackson to promote voting rights, a sniper opened fire on Meredith with an automatic 16-gauge shotgun. He sustained wounds to his head, back, shoulders and legs; at least 80 pellets remain lodged in his body. Later, he outraged many of his former colleagues by opposing government-imposed affirmative action, welfare and busing and joining the staff of conservative Republican senator Jesse Helms. Meredith, now 69 and a resident of Jackson, Miss., is a fascinating, renegade hero. Grandson of a slave and son of a property-owning farmer, he was among the first black soldiers to join the racially integrated U.S. armed forces. After serving in Japan, he enrolled at all-black Jackson State College against a backdrop of horrific lynchings across the Deep South. Meredith resolved to do what he could to break the reign of white supremacy: Confront the beast head on by enrolling at the segregated university that he had dreamed of attending since he was a little boy. To the chagrin of those who romanticize the Kennedys and the Democrats as the unassailable and stalwart champions of civil rights, author Doyle reveals how brothers John and Bobby botched the handling of the crisis at Ole Miss. JFK preferred to wash his hands of the whole "God-damn mess" that the civil rights issue had become to his White House. RFK, then his brother's attorney general, led negotiations with Gov. Barnett that collapsed at the last minute and led to what he later called the worst night of his life. Doyle reports that the Kennedys, more concerned with public relations than sacred principles of equality, secretly ordered black soldiers pulled from the front lines of the battle and forcibly resegregated. Some 4,000 black troops were assigned to garbage details and kitchen patrol in order not to offend white rioters. It was a disgraceful maneuver, made all the more so, one black military policeman told Doyle, "when you consider what the hell we were sent down there for -- the integration of a racially discriminatory institution. Based on more than 500 eyewitness interviews, hours of White House tapes, and some 9,000 pages of files from the Federal Bureau of Investigations, Doyle's "American Resurrection" is an invaluable retelling of forgotten history -- a passionate tribute to one man who walked the talk of equality, and a shameful indictment of the cowards and villains who stood in the way.

Well, Malkin wants to plug a book on Meredith.  Why does she give a damn about Meredith? Because he later becomes a Conservative, even worked for Senator Jesse Helms..  The book “An American Insurrection: The Battle of Oxford Mississippi 1962,” is supposed to be about Meredith’s struggle to get into Ol' Miss.  But it’s not.  It’s a right-wing hatchet job on the Kennedys.  The book's author, William Doyle, thinks the Kennedys “botched,” this crises and wanted nothing to do with the whole “God damn mess,” of Civil Rights.  Doyle blames RFK for the breakdown in negotiations with Mississippi’s Governor Bartlett.  Doyle also criticizes JFK for removing Blacks from being in the National Guard troop sent in response to the crisis.

Well, that was actually rather a smart thing to do becasue it would only have escalated a situation he’s trying to diffuse. To send in an a National Guard troop with Blacks on that front line would be like trying to put out a fire with gasoline.  

Malkin gets so happy that Doyle is using this episode of the Civil Rights movement to attack the Kennedys that she gets the title wrong, “American Ressurection.” This piece of crap book which now sells on amazon for less than a dollar was reviewed by Publisher's Weekley, and I quote:

[Doyle's] indiscriminate accumulation of detail (the governor's wife wore pearl-frame glasses; the average height of the 503rd Military Police Battalion is 5'10") mars the book. The sketches of Civil War battles (provided by way of analogy to the Mississippi crisis) and of assorted local, state and federal troop movements fail to cohere. Some of Doyle's facts that World War II paratroopers served in "Normandy, Holland, Belgium, Sicily, Italy and North Africa"; references to JFK's "overlapping extramarital affairs and fleeting sexual experiences"; the price tag on Meredith's graduation suit ($85) bring neither depth nor diversion to this unimaginative text.
So, why do Wexler and Hancock use this Malkin article?  Good question.  Do they share Malkin’s views? Malkin does not mention The White Knights of Mississippi but the KKK does appear in her article.  That's apparently good enough.  

Saturday, April 14, 2012

The Paris Match Photo!

I listened to Jim DiEugenio on Black Op Radio talking about the MLK assassination.  This was show #573 which aired on April 5th, 2012.  He is as well versed in that assassination as the JFK assassination.  CTKA, Jim's website has a section on the King case.  Jim brought up the Paris Match photo.  Paris Match is a weekly magazine published in France that is akin to our LIFE magazine.  Jim mentioned a photo in the magazine that proved the impossibility of an assassin shooting from that window.  Harold Weisberg mentions this photo on page 168 of his book on the MLK case "Frame-Up."

Well, here it is.

This is from the 20th of April 1968 edition of Paris Match.  The cover is devoted to a Boeing airplane with BOAC airlines that crash landed.  There are photos of the plane in flight with its wing engine on fire.  There were survivors.  It managed to land at some airport intact.  People got lucky.

I recently acquired this magazine.  I have never seen this photo before.  I have never seen it reprinted in any American magazine, newspaper, or book.

According to Jim,  Paris Match did a reconstruction of the shooting.  "From the window from which James Earl Ray would have had to shoot King there was a bathtub.  It was positioned in such a way that when that magazine sent a team over to do a reconstruction the guy had to contort himself into such a position in which there is no possible way you could have aimed the rifle to shoot King because he would have had to have been standing on the rim of the bathtub.  Eventually, the state understood that this was a serious problem.  So, in the museum they have now [ the former Bessie Brewer boarding house property was purchased by the National Civil Rights museum.]  THEY MOVED THE BATHUB into a position where you don't have to do that anymore."

It's hard to get the whole page.  I have a scanner that can accommodate a legal sized piece of paper 8.5 x 14 but this magazine page is larger than that.

 Paris Match 20 Avril 1968 p. 52

I believe that what he's using as a rifle substitute is a bit of brush 
or some small tree with its roots hanging down.

The accompanying text

This is the French text as well as I could duplicate it:

Une fenetre de salle de bains, au premier etage d'une maison meublee dans les faubourgs de Memphis c' est de la qu' est partie la balle qui a tue Martin Luther  U  jeun e Blanc tres grand qui se faisait appeler John Willard est venu me demander une chambre dit Mrs. Frank Brewer la gerante du petit hotel du 422 South Main Street Il insista pour avoir le numero 5 cote sud  Moins d’une heure apres l’attentat, la police avait reconstitue les faits Willard s’etait absente entre 4 h 30 et 5 h 30 Son voisin de palier  Willy Anchutz l’avait vu revenir avec un objet enveloppe dans du papier journal.  Il etait 18 h 5 quand le coup de feu fut tire  Quelques secondes plus tard.  Anchutz croisait a nouveau Willard  Il sortait de la salle de bains commune et portait toujours sous le bras  son long paquet  Le soir meme  Ronsey Clark, ministre de la Justice annoncait  Le colis etait l arme du crime  une Remington 30 a lunette  Nous connaissons le vrai nom de Willard L arrestation est une questions d heures. 

This is the English translation as best as my typing skills and Google translate can come up with:

A bathroom window at first floor of a furnished house in the suburbs of Memphis that is of that part is the bullet that killed Martin Luther fasting U every large White who called himself John Willard came I request a room said Mrs.. Frank Brewer manageress of the small hotel of 422 South Main Street, he insisted to have the number 5 south coast less than an hour after the attack, police had reconstructed the facts Willard was absent between 4 and 5 h 30 h 30 his next door neighbor had seen Willy Anchutz back with an object wrapped in newspaper. He was 18 5h when the shot was fired a few seconds. Anchutz crossed again Willard He came out of the shared bathroom and always wore under his arm along the same night package Ronsey ClarkMinister of Justice announced the package was the murder weapon was a Remington 30 bezel We know the real name the arrest of Willard is a question of hours.

If you can improve the translation for me I'd appreciate it. 

Page 168 from Weisberg's "Frame-Up"

The bathtub that they show you today, which is not in its original position.  And to me this looks like an entirely different bathtub.  This tub does not appear to have the reclined, angled back like the one the Paris Match man is perched on.   As with the alleged assassin's window at the Sixth Floor Museum in Dallas this area is glassed off to the public.