Black Friday

I remember it well. It was one of those perfectly beautiful sunny, cloudless, cool and crisp Friday mornings on the Arizona desert. The clock said it was just a few short minutes past 11:30 AM, MST. We had gotten out of biochemistry class right on time and I’d quickly made my way to my car which was parked in the student lot next to the Physical Sciences complex at Arizona State University in Tempe. I was about to pull out of the lot on my way to Rural Road and my apartment a few blocks away when blam. It happened. The car radio was on and was, as usual, tuned to KUPD, the local station that played a steady stream of music by stalwarts including Frank Sinatra, Mel Torme, Andy Williams, et al., along with some occasional jazzy riffs by talents such as Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong. About two minutes after I pulled out of the parking lot, the music stopped and a voice interrupted: “We have just received an as yet unconfirmed news bulletin from Dallas, Texas: President Kennedy has been shot. There is no information on his condition. We will report back the moment more information becomes available.”

It was Friday, November 22, 1963. By the time I was parked at my apartment a few minutes later, there was another interruption. This one simply said, in extremely somber voice, that  “At Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, Texas, President John Fitzgerald Kennedy . . . has been pronounced dead . . .” The voice was shaking and pausing. “Stay tuned for further details.”

Forty-nine years have since passed, and still we await ‘further details’ on the assassination of the 35th President of the United States. Little things, you know, like who really did it . . .  as in who were the trigger-men, who set it up, why, etc. Names and details, please. And stop with this Lee Harvey Oswald nonsense, along with all of the ‘lone assassin’ and ‘single gunman’ baloney. One might dare to think that most any American coup d’ etat would be worthy of genuine investigation, of a genuine search for the truth behind the event; you know, names, associations, all the details that define the genuine trail of blood and tears. But apparently not.

Wonder why that is?

I’ll not spend time here discussing any of the details of what may well have been the most extensive and exhaustive coverup of the facts behind such a major event. I’ll simply add a many-years-later quote by USAF Colonel (retired) L. Fletcher Prouty, himself Chief, Special Operations Division of the Office of the Special Assistant for Counterinsurgency and Special Activities, Joint Staff, during the Kennedy years. Prouty was, on that day, in New Zealand, returning from a ‘special assignment’ to Antarctica. In his book JFK he wrote:

It seems that those who planned the murder of the President knew the inner workings of the government very well. This fact is made evident not so much by the skill with which the murder of the President was undertaken as by the masterful cover-up program that has continued since November 22, 1963, and that terrible hour in Dallas’s Dealey Plaza when the warfare in Indochina moved from a low-intensity conflict, as seen by President Kennedy, to a major operation–a major war–in the hands of the Johnson administration.

In short, Prouty never gave a moment’s credence to any of the ‘official’ findings and conclusions concerning the murder of John F. Kennedy. He was, however, somewhat amused that while in New Zealand, he first learned of the arrest of and charges against Lee Harvey Oswald some four hours before the event actually occurred, via announcements courtesy of local Christchurch news outlets.

Friday, November 22, 1963 was, indeed, worthy of the moniker Black Friday even though it was the Friday before, rather than the Friday following, Thanksgiving of that year.

As for alleged assassin — the lone gunman who allegedly shot JFK from a sixth floor window of the Texas School Book Depository on Dealey Plaza in Dallas Texas, following his arrest and before his murder a couple of days later (in a crowded room at the Dallas Police offices) by Jack Ruby — Lee Harvey Oswald stated publicly that he had had nothing at all to do with the assassination, that he was, in fact, “a patsy.”

Anyone who might still believe today that Oswald was, indeed, guilty as charged, should take a close look at frames 313 and following in the Zapruder film of JFK’s murder. In frame 313, blood sprays out of Kennedy’s head as the bullet which killed him enters. In frames following, his head and body snap backward toward the rear of the car, and Jackie climbs onto the car’s trunk as she scrambles to (as she later revealed) retrieve pieces of JFK’s brain which were splattered on the trunk lid behind the car’s back seat, behind his head. All of that from Oswald’s alleged third shot. Fired from the sixth floor window of the Texas School Book Depository building. Approximately a block BEHIND the President’s car. The bullet apparently made a complete U-turn while in flight. A true miracle. On Black Friday. November 22. 1963. In Dallas. Texas.

A day or two later, the following editorial cartoon by Wm. Mauldin made the pages of nearly every newspaper in the country. It’s one I’ll never forget.

Lincoln wept; he knew and realized full well that the America for which he had struggled, fought, and died, was now in her own death throes. I could not find then . . . nor still today . . . any room at all to argue with Mauldin’s premise.

JFK and America:

R.I.P.

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About frugalchariot

How Frugal is the Chariot That bears the Human soul. (Emily Dickinson)
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