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Three new / updated John Newman JFK books appearing on Amazon over the next few weeks
God, what a great title. I wonder who thought it up?
The Kindle version of JFK AND VIETNAM went up today. You can read a long excerpt if you click on the cover.

I agree the titles are great. Volume 3 of Newman's series (undated but I'm guessing we'll see it in 18 months or so) is called INTO THE STORM.
John Newman has been discussing the contents of his books in some detail on Facebook, with researchers such as Lisa Pease and Douglas Valentine chipping in. John has now announced a new website and a forthcoming blog -

Quote:We are building a new web site with more information about Countdown to Darkness and JFK and Vietnam. A blog will be added in a couple of days, as well as images of the documents I have posted on FB over the past month and videos and other content.

The website is here.

Alan Dale posted a review on Amazon, which led to some discussion between Lisa Pease and Newman. I'm reprinting the review, and the discussion here, as I think both are of interest.

Quote:Alan Dale's Amazon review -

Countdown to Darkness: The Assassination of President Kennedy Volume II is the important next step in the extraordinary and ambitious work of one of our most essential contemporary historians, Dr. John Newman. I have characterized Volume I as being not supremely well suited for those who are new to the deepest areas of current JFK research. Countdown to Darkness places its predecessor, Where Angels Tread Lightly, in appropriate context as our necessary point of entry, and affirms that Dr. Newman is doing something that no one has ever done. What he is producing on the related areas of this topic is unprecedented in its scope and density. The publication of Volume II makes clear that the continuation of Dr. Newman's work-in-progress on the assassination of President Kennedy defines, as comprehensively as possible, a multi-dimensional representation of what can be known during this time.

Across an enormously broad chronological range and geographical landscape, Dr. Newman's work, which includes the newly updated and expanded second edition of JFK and Vietnam, maintains that our task requires we must properly identify and understand every individual on the playing field as Cold War hot-spots were being targeted for U.S. plans and actions, and America's National Security executives were ordered to execute what Dr. Newman refers to as President Eisenhower's "Cold War Triple Play," the elimination, through covert and plausibly deniable means, of Patrice Lumumba, Rafael Trujillo, and Fidel Castro. President Eisenhower's orders to do this, and the manner and means by which actions were initiated to carry them out before the end of the president's second term, would have supremely serious ramifications for John F. Kennedy as presidential candidate, president-elect, and most of all, once he was inaugurated as president at noon on January 20th, 1961.

Volume II continues to build upon the major working hypotheses and further assumptions set forth in Volume I. The following are introduced with the publication of Countdown to Darkness:

(New): The deaths of Patrice Lumumba in the Congo, and Rafael Trujillo in the Dominican Republicwithout regard to who actually pulled the triggerswere ultimately the result of President Eisenhower's top secret plan according to which their elimination was an indispensable requirement for the success of his covert plan to overthrow Castro.

(New): President Kennedy's April 1961 decisions against direct U.S. military intervention in Cuba and Laos spawned the deep hatred in many circles that gathered momentum during the Cuban Missile Crisis, and later become a critical part of the motivation for his assassination in 1963.

(New): Lee Harvey Oswald was a witting false defector sent to the USSR as U-2 flypaper as part of an elaborate plan to trap a KGB mole in the CIA (Popov's mole)

· (New): DCI Allen Dulles was aware, well before Congo's independence, of Belgium's plans for the secession of Katanga Province.

· (New): The claims, by top advisors to Presidents Eisenhower and Kennedy, that an exile invasion would trigger an uprising of the Cuban population against Castro were known to be false by those who made them.

· (New): The CIA attempt to cobble together a functional government-in-exile from the exiled Cuban leaders was doomed to fail right from the start.

· (New): Given the level and timing of Soviet Bloc military aid to the Castro regime, there was not enough time to adequately prepare, train, and equip a Cuban exile military force capable of toppling the regime.

· (New): DCI Allen Dulles and the Joint Chiefs of Staff knew that the CIA- planned invasion of Cuba would fail, and deliberately withheld this judgment from the president. Furthermore, they assumed that, once the exile forces were being slaughtered on the beachhead at the Bay of Pigs, Kennedy would reverse his policy of refusing to intervene with U.S. military forces.

· (New): Allen Dulles hoped that DDP Dick Bissell would be fired for the failed landing in Cuba, and that Dulles would get to remain as the DCI instead of being replaced by Bissell as JFK had originally planned.

It need not go without saying that these works, which must include JFK and Vietnam, second edition, complement one another and serve our interests best when viewed and evaluated together. JFK and Vietnam created a media firestorm when it was originally published in 1992. It was attacked (and defended) from all sides, and, significantly, it was embraced and supported by former DCI William Colby and former special assistant to President Kennedy, Arthur Schlesinger, Jr., people who were there and felt that the story had never been examined with this kind of authority nor told with this kind of documentation. I feel very strongly that there is value in looking closely at these works in relation to each other. Reading and absorbing as much as we can of JFK and Vietnam provides deeper context and broader perspective of Dr. Newman's work on the assassination of President Kennedy.

I would like to add one additional personal observation. Countdown to Darkness is addressing issues in the years leading up to Dallas which the author understands to be necessary for our purposes. He has said that, contrary to what many authors of works offering conclusions might desperately try to make us believe, we are, in fact, at the beginning of a serious investigation of 1.) President Kennedy's murder, 2.) who were the ultimate perpetrators, and 3.) how they got away with it. The experience of reading this book, part of which examines controversial issues which we do encounter along our journey, has forced me to confront specific allegations which until now have been too distasteful for me to consider. Those of us who look upon the Kennedy brothers as heroes, and for whom the impact of their deaths created emotional wounds which will never completely heal, are acutely sensitive to and on guard against character assassination and tabloid accusations which over many years and periodic revivals seem designed to diminish the memory of their lives so that the significance of their deaths may be devalued. Having to confront certain issues which are present in the story being examined has been ugly and difficult for me, and maybe it's helped me grow up a little. Maybe it has forced me to venture outside of my comfort zone, maybe it's a good thing to be able to at least look at things we would not choose to be true whether they are true or not, maybe we are better off if we have the courage and willingness to admit that knowledge is indifferent to what we want to be true. Because of the work of Dr. John Newman, I am determined more than ever to confront the things I was afraid to look at and, at a minimum, to concede that for progress to be earned we must examine everything in our path so that we may learn what is important and what is not in our continuing quest for greater knowledge and deeper understanding of the events which preceded the assassination of President Kennedy.

Dr. John Newman is a retired U.S. Army intelligence officer who served for two years as Executive Military Assistant to the Director, General William Odom at the National Security Agency. He has testified before various sub-committees of the U.S. House of Representatives, has worked as a consultant on two major motion pictures and to various U.S. and foreign media organizations including PBS Frontline, the History Channel, C-Span, NBC, and other news agencies. His experience and expertise as a strategic intelligence cryptologic analyst makes his qualifications and credentials unique among those who choose to delve into the hidden histories buried within America's military and intelligence bureaucracies. For the past quarter century his work has overturned orthodoxies, broken new ground, introduced new facts, and produced revelations about America during the Cold War.

Highest recommendation.

In response to the above review, Pease and Newman had the following conversation.

Quote:Lisa Pease: I gave a presentation to John and others at Gary Aguilar's gathering a few years ago about how RFK and JFK were not only not trying to kill Castro, but how the CIA was laying down a provably false trail to implicate them. John has never rebutted that work to me and I asked that if anyone found actual evidence, to share it with me. If he's just ignoring all that now, that would be upsetting.

John Newman:
Lisa, I am currently working on that subjectit enters the strike zone for Volume III, "Into the Storm" (April '61-summer '62). I have been surprised about a great many things in the course of this endeavor so far. I have found it best not to get ahead of myself and just follow the evidence as it unfolds.

Lisa Pease:
I just know that every single time I've found something that looked like it placed the blame at their feet, if I KEPT digging, there was rebuttal evidence to that. So it's not enough to be accurate - one has to be thorough too. I know it was a big part of your thesis when you presented at the last AARC conference. But all the facts worked with a different explanation - that the CIA was trying to paint the Kennedys into that awful picture to hide the fact that they had gone rogue. When I first looked into the Kennedys' possible role in the Castro plots, all accusations in the books of others tracked back to the assertions of Sam Halpern. But when Jeff Morley talked to Halpern, he said something that made a lie of what he had told the others. He said the CIA was furious at Robert Kennedy because he only wanted to do actions in Cuba that amounted to no more than "pin pricks." The animosity the CIA had toward Robert Kennedy is so palpable. Halpern had no love for the Kennedys and no desire to protect. But there's no way you could call an assassination plot a pin prick. I think Halpern admitted the truth to Morley because everything he told others was at variance with the record.

And bottom line, there's no way to read the Castro reports plot and say they were covering for Kennedy when they said the CIA could not claim they were following Kennedy's orders in the plots. They admitted they told RFK only of the plots that had ended, not the plots that were continuing. That document was never meant to see the light of day for a reason.

John Newman:
I believe it is fair to point out that I am in no way ignoring this subject. I have already put it on the table generally in Vol I: "Hypothesis Two: The plot was also designed to make it appear that the Kennedy brothers' plan to overthrow Castro had been successfully turned around by Fidel, resulting in the assassination of President Kennedy." In Vol II I have said that I still see this to be the case. I have not specifically discussed whether the plan to overthrow Fidel (during JFK administration) included a presidential direct or indirect plot to assassinate Castro. I need to take time to go through this myself. It is one of the many topics that is at the top of my list for volume III.

Lisa Pease:
And that is as far as truth allows, from all I have seen, and that's been an area of deep interest to me since I first started looking into this.
On CNN Zacharia this morning he mentioned that Bannon is recommending Halberstam's book "The Best And Brightest" to show how official analysts can get things wrong. Zacharia said the book shows how the powers that be in the American government were so anxious to confront communism that they underestimated the reality of Viet Nam and its win-ability.

No mention that Kennedy was trying to tell them that...The US government has come full circle and now the violators are posing under the protests of the victims...
That shows you the difference between Trump and Obama.

Under Obama, the book the doves were reading was Gordon Goldstein's Lessons in Disaster. A much better book about Vietnam that Halberstam's obsolete Model T Ford.

BTW, is Bannon saying that to justify his presence on the NSC? Ha Ha

Because in this instance its exactly wrong. Once it became clear that LBJ was reversing JFK's Vietnam policy, one by one, both the formal NSC advisors and informal cabinet left, one by one. Salinger, O'Donnell, Schlesinger, Sorenson, Bundy, Ball, and finally McNamara. They left because it was obvious that LBJ would NOT listen to them. He had his own agenda. And that agenda stayed intact until the Tet offensive.

I am sure you can find good examples of the NSC getting something completely wrong, but this is not one of them. And it shows what a poor student to history Bannon is.
Typical of today's media I think the Zacharia piece was designed to suggest there was a displacement of presidential power and powerful advisors in government bureaucracies were responsible for the miscalculation in Viet Nam. However, typical of CNN, it never quite gets to the accurate details of how JFK was right on top of this in advance and was assassinated by those powerful players exactly because of it. I guess what you are saying is Halberstam failed to cover the true existing situation that Taylor, Rostow, Rusk, and McNamara had established in Viet Nam that the war would be inconclusive. CNN is starting to hint at what really happened but leaves out the important details.

Look at the weaseling Washington Post trying to pose the New York Times as being a threat to Kennedy's Viet Nam war-mongering here:

Quote:Famously, President John F. Kennedy asked the New York Times to withdraw David Halberstam from Saigon, where Halberstam and other independent-minded war correspondents were raising difficult questions about the quagmire. Ultimately, it was the people of all ages protesting in the streets of U.S. cities (counted more accurately by the media than by the government) and hard-driving journalists, not politicians, who brought about a shift in policy.
The Post fails to mention it was helping the government cover-up the CIA's murder of Kennedy at the time:

The Washington Post is wrong also.

Kennedy wanted Halberstam displaced at that time because Halberstam was an advocate of Jean Paul Vann, the American advisor who wanted Kennedy to commit combat troops to Vietnam.

JFK tried to thwart them both since he was dead set against that policy. The media does not note that Halberstam did a reversal on the issue when he started writing his book and understood that Vann was wrong.

Neil Sheehan was also an advocate of Vann along with Halberstam. He also wanted American combat troops in theater. Except it took him longer to understand that Vann was wrong than it did with Halberstam.

BTW, neither of those two clowns--Sheehan or Halberstam--would ever admit that Vann was wrong and JFK was right. Even after the Pentagon Papers were published with a chapter on JFK's withdrawal plan.
Here is my two-part retroactive review of Halbertsam's blunder of a book, which the MSM praised so heartily.

The Best and the Brightest was one of the luckiest books ever written. By the time it was published, and everything was going south, the MSM and the public needed a book that blamed someone, anyone for what had happened. Halberstam seemed to do so in a general way and seemed to show that there were certain people in the system who wanted to stop it but were either displaced or died. The only reviewer who said he was full of crap at the time was Mary McCarthy.

Halberstam was one of the first to point the finger at McNamara. We now know that McNamara was actually implementing JFK's withdrawal policy at his behest in 1963. LBJ personally reversed that policy, telling McNamara he never agreed with it. And then sent him to Vietnam in early 1964, telling him to get the real intel figures, since LBJ knew from his military aide what those figures actually were. He then used those to base his plan to expand the war, which was enclosed in NSAM 288.

When McGeorge Bundy reread Halberstam in the nineties, he told Goldstein that The Best and the Brightest got it all wrong since Halberstam did not understand who JFK was or what he was doing. That is what inspired me to write my long review of Halberstam in light of the declassified record. Good books persevere even in light of new info. Halberstam's book is a dinosaur today.

What Newman's book did was to clear the field and set a new paradigm. Which is why JFK and Vietnam is a milestone today.
I wrote the below nine years ago, in response to the tide of hagiographic drivel in the UK MSM which attended Halberstam's passing. I see no reason to revise any of it:

Quote:The Guardian has long been the CIA's most important pipeline to the British left; and Godfrey Hodgson, first as The Observer's correspondent in the US, then as the foreign editor of The Independent, a dutiful British hack regurgitator of US establishment pap. Put them together on the subject of the recently deceased David Halberstam and there could be only one outcome lucid, confident, CIA-serving, tosh.

A reliable indicator of the accuracy of the Hodgsonian obit in yesterday morning's edition of the paper (p.31) is to be found in the photograph and caption which accompanied. It is the front cover of a reissue of Halberstam's "The Best and the Brightest" foreword by noted truth-seeker Senator John McCain, no less under which lies the following caption: "Halberstam, on the cover of his 1972 book about flawed US foreign policy, was scrupulously fair in his reporting." In fact, the figure in the photograph is obviously, unmistakably, Robert Strange McNamara.

Halberstam's grotesquely inflated reputation rests on two aspects of his career: His work as a correspondent for the New York Times, Langley's paper of anti-record, in Vietnam, 1962-64; and the subsequent books and journalism derived from that period. An honest examination of both compel a very different accounting and conclusion to those furnished by the sycophantic Hodgson.

In the establishment parallel universe occupied by such as Hodgson, American journalism of the Cold War era existed in a CIA-/Mockingbird-free zone: There was no Agency recruitment in US universities; plum foreign assignments were offered purely on merit; and reporters didn't spy, or act as mouthpieces, for CIA foreign (and domestic) policies. Thus Halberstam could not conceivably have been talent spotted by the Agency at Harvard, sheep-dipped in the south as a remarkably well-informed cub reporter of civil rights activism, then sent to Congo to cash in this credibility as a hard-right CIA mouthpiece. No, such an interpretation is paranoid nonsense and without foundation. Or is it? In the case of his Congo posting, the contemporaneous example of the Scripps-Howard group suggests otherwise.

In mid-1960, S-H's correspondent in the Congo, D'Lynn Waldron, was acting as a courier for the increasingly besieged Lumumba, ferrying his defiant, pitiful entreaties for assistance and understanding over the border for transmission to Washington. She was recalled. In her stead, Richard Starnes, not long resigned as the managing editor of the group's one-time bellwether, the New York World-Telegram & Sun, was offered the post at meeting with the S-H executive, and former OSS-er, Oland Russell, and a CIA officer. Starnes declined. In his place went Henry Taylor, Jr., ex-ONI, who was to be killed in fighting shortly after his arrival in early September 1960. In short, then, the CIA had an intense and active involvement in which journalists went to the Congo in the period. And the CIA had a policy for the Congo, one which ran utterly counter to everything Kennedy had argued for, first as a presidential candidate; and subsequently, in turn, as President-elect, then President.

In the Congo, Halberstam produced precisely the kind of journalism exterminatory US neo-colonialism required in its quest for uranium tri-oxide and the like. In the NYT's in-house paper, Times Talk, we find such classic contributions as "It's Chaos for a Correspondent in the Congo" (October-November 1961) and "Congo Boondocks: Land of Cannibals and Diamonds" (William Prochnau. Once Upon a Distant War: Reporting from Vietnam (Edinburgh: Mainstream, 1996, p.509). Africans, the less than subtle subtext had it, just couldn't be trusted to run a country, particularly one full of strategic, or merely desirable, minerals. On the same assignment, according to serial flatterer Prochnau, Halberstam "played mostly by the old rules. He checked in regularly with the CIA men, and, in the accepted fashion of the day, thought nothing of doing a little routine information trading" (Ibid., p.150). Did this closeness cease upon Halberstam's move to Saigon? Hardly.

On his second day there, Prochnau earlier disclosed, Halberstam went to lunch with "the CIA's Saigon station chief, John Richardson" who gave him "an unexpectedly good lead" (Ibid., p.133). A little further on, we learn: "By now his CIA contacts from the Congo had begun to flock to the hot new action in Southeast Asia like bees to honey. Vietnam was a spook's dream…" (Ibid., p.169). Interestingly, the Times of Vietnam, in its detailed expose of the abortive CIA-orchestrated coup planned for August 28/29, 1963, had this to say: "Beginning in January of this year, it is reported American secret agency "experts" who successfully engineered the coup d'etats in Turkey, Guatemala, Korea, and failed in Iran and Cuba, began arriving in Vietnam, taking up duties mostly in the U.S. Embassy, U.S.O.M., M.A.A.G., and various official and unofficial installations here" ("CIA Financing Planned Coup D'Etat: Planned for Aug. 28; Falls Flat, Stillborn," Monday, 2 September 1963, pp.1). Had those Agency coup experts also served in the Congo, to thwart Kennedy's backing for the UN?

Whatever the truth of that conjecture, there can be little doubt that Halberstam's closeness to, and affinity for, the Agency endured. His first book derived from his posting in Vietnam, Making of a Quagmire (NY: Random House, 1965), is littered with testimony to the relationship:

pp.221-225: extended defence of CIA's role in Saigon.

p.222: "…many CIA agents in Saigon were my friends, and I considered them among the ablest Americans I had seen overseas or at home."

p.241: "That night I had drinks with two friends in the CIA. They were exceptionally bitter…"

p.262: "Our basic information, coming from several sources close to the CIA…"

p.263: "…more than a year later, another CIA friend claimed that…"

In later years, Halberstam sought to distance himself from the charge of acting as a CIA mouthpiece in Vietnam, telling Prochnau that fellow reporter, UPI man Neil Sheehan "had better CIA sources. I had better military because I could travel more…" (Once Upon a Distant War, p.277). Any sense of reassurance was somewhat undercut by the earlier admission that his acknowledged lead source, Colonel John Paul Vann, was "a blunt, essentially conservative, at time almost reactionary man…much of our information came from men like Vann" (Making of a Quagmire, p.164). In any case, Vann was recalled from South Vietnam in early April 1963.

Sheehan, like Halberstam, formed part of a journalistic clique that worked assiduously for the overthrow of a Diem government engaged in protracted peace negotiations with Hanoi; and its replacement by a military junta that would prosecute the war with more vigour. That the clique worked hand in glove with the Agency was never more clearly demonstrated than in the aftermath of the publication of Richard Starnes' Arrogant' CIA Disobeys Orders in Vietnam on 2 October 1963. Two members of the clique, Halberstam and AP's Malcolm Browne, were at the forefront of the CIA's defenders in the pages of the NYT. Halberstam's contribution to whitewashing the Agency's open revolt ran as follows:

Quote:New York Times, Friday, 4 October 1963, pp.1 & 4
Lodge And C.I.A. Differ on Policy

Ambassador and Agency's Chief in Saigon Clash on Conduct of the War

Saigon, South Vietnam, Oct. 3 Ambassador Henry Cabot Lodge and the head of Central Intelligence Agency operations in Saigon do not agree on United States policy for Vietnam.

The Ambassador would be happier with a new C.I.A. chief. [The present C.I.A. chief in Saigon is believed to be John Richardson.]This is not a problem of personalities. What is involved is in part the traditional relationship, sometimes of rivalry, between the State Department and the C.I.A. In part it involves the problem of whether the C.I.A. should be primarily a straight intelligence network, or have operative functions; whether there should be separate chiefs for intelligence and operations.

It is believed here that Mr. Lodge feels that when a man is assigned to an important and, in this case, difficult operative function, the requirements of that post conflict with the objectivity and disinterest required of an intelligence chief.

There is no evidence that the C.I.A. chief has directly countermanded any orders by the Ambassador. Assertions that he has are denied in all quarters here.

Rather, even amid the current controversy, it is acknowledged that the C.I.A. chief, for more than a year, has carried out the extremely difficult and taxing job of working closely with Ngo Dinh Nhu. In this aspect of his duties he has done a superior job, say the other members of the mission. It is the basic contradiction between this role and that of an intelligence chief that is at stake.

Informants here say Mr. Lodge has told Washington he wants a new chief, and that the C.I.A. is fighting back hard. The matter is believed now resting with the White House.

It is believed here that Mr. Lodge and the C.I.A. chief see this war effort in somewhat different lights. Likewise, they see the proper function of a C.I.A. chief in different lights.

It is also true that in recent weeks in Saigon, as a major re-evaluation of United States policy has been taking place, the American mission here has tended to become the theater, on a small scale, of the traditional conflict in Washington of the Pentagon, the State Department and the C.I.A.

Part of the present struggle over the C.I.A. chief is believed to have a parallel in a struggle by Mr. Lodge against Maj. General Paul D. Harkins to establish himself as the real as well as the nominal head of the American mission here.

At the moment, some sources say, there is a growing effort to make the C.I.A. the scapegoat for the unhappy events of the last six weeks. When Government forces raided Buddhist pagodas on Aug. 21 the C.I.A. seemed confused about what was going on. There followed the demand by Washington that Ngo Dinh Nhu and his wife be pushed out of the Government, defiance of that demand by Ngo Dinh Diem, and Washington's decision to go along with the regime.

Some persistent enemies of the intelligence agency are accused of using recent events as an opportunity to voice their bitterness against the agency.

Many persons in Saigon contend that in general intelligence operatives here are at the highest caliber, and say they have played vital roles in some of the most successful programs of the complicated counter-insurgency machinery

The piece is fascinating not least for the extent to which it confirmed the justice of the charge made in Frank Coniff's New York Journal American column of 26 August 1963 that Halberstam had "resurrected from oblivion good old reliable sources,' and idiomatic usage that was, alack, fast disappearing from the reporter's arsenal. We stopped counting in Saturday's Times after 11 hits by good old reliable sources' or his less sturdy brother, plain old sources.' Mr. Halberstam has done us all a favor by restoring new vigor to a rapidly fading journalistic cliché" ("New York J. A. Takes Issue With New York Times," Times of Vietnam, 3 September 1963, p.1). In his 4 October defence of the Agency, Halberstam ran the gamut of euphemisms for the CIA: "all quarters here"; "some sources"; "Many persons in Saigon"; "other members of the mission"; and "Informants here."

First in his 4 October 1963 riposte to Starnes, then in his 1965 book, Making of a Quagmire, Halberstam was unwilling to concede that Richardson, at the time of his recall by Kennedy, was a firm advocate of Diem's overthrow. That concession was to be slipped in to his 1972 magnum opus, The Best and the Brightest (NY: Random House, 1972 edition): "Even the CIA chief, John Richardson, who until recently had been so close to Nhu, was a surprising advocate of a coup, and a prophet that the coup would come and come quickly" (p.264). It was this book that provoked Warren Hinckle, editor of Ramparts, to one of the great book reviews of the 1970s:

Quote:"What critical reporting there was about Vietnam dealt with questions of the efficiency or practicality of the means of American policy but did not question its ends. It is a measure of the level of press criticism of America's great Vietnam misadventure that David Halberstam was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 1964 for calling Madame Nhu a bitch. Halberstam, long the war's most celebrated critic, chastised the corrupt Nhu family and poked the wind machines of the General's public relations machinery while still accepting the basic ideological tenets of American policy. In an Esquire interview in 1964 Halberstam worried that this pretty little country will be lost.' In his earlier book, The Making of a Quagmire, said Halberstam the war critic: The lesson to be learned from Vietnam is that we must get in earlier, be shrewder and force the other side to practice the self-deception.'

I would not nitpick Halberstam were it not for his recent and nauseating criticisms of those liberal Establishment types who made America's Vietnam policy that they were the victims of some weepy, ill-defined hubris that kept them from seeing the fatal flaw in the whole undertaking that the formulates in his trendy best seller, The Best and the Brightest, which must rank as one of the great bullxxxx books of all time. Halberstam adroitly skips over the fact that the American press establishment had its own best and brightest in Vietnam (not the least of them Halberstam) during those years of folly a decade of electronic, plugged-in and satellited reporting that exhibited the same arrogance or, if we must, hubris of the ideology of the men whom Halberstam now so artfully brushes with the vanishing cream of tragedy."

Warren Hinckle. If You Have a Lemon, Make Lemonade: An Essential Memoir of a Lunatic Decade (NY: G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1974), pp.162-163.

Real history is in Hinckle. For the CIA fairy tale, see The Guardian and the equally appalling Hodgson.

"There are three sorts of conspiracy: by the people who complain, by the people who write, by the people who take action. There is nothing to fear from the first group, the two others are more dangerous; but the police have to be part of all three,"

Joseph Fouche
It figures the Washington Post would lie and try to paint Halberstam as the shining media hero who tried to correct Kennedy but was stopped by his war-mongering ambitions in Viet Nam. Talk about standing everything on its head and accusing the victim of what they were guilty of. It would be nice to query Bannon as to what exactly he means by referencing Halberstam considering...

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