Jim DiEugenio continues his re-examination of Halberstam, emphasizing the near total antithesis between LBJ and JFK in terms of Vietnam (and foreign policy in general) which the book all but erased.
Tuesday, 17 May 2011 15:38

David Halberstam, The Best and the Brightest, Part 1

Written by James DiEugenio
In the first of a two part study, Jim DiEugenio reexamines, in the light of what we now know, the book which perhaps more than any other epitomized the accepted wisdom on JFK's role in US involvement in Vietnam.
Monday, 31 January 2011 21:22

Gerald Blaine, The Kennedy Detail

Written by Vince Palamara
Although very well written, along with some nice photographs, as well, The Kennedy Detail is really a thinly veiled attempt to rewrite history ... and absolve the agents of their collective survivor's guilt .... In the eyes of those from the Kennedy detail, the assassination was the act of TWO "lone men": Oswald, who pulled the trigger, and JFK, who set himself up as the target, writes Vince Palamara.
Monday, 29 November 2010 19:58

Gordon Goldstein, Lessons in Disaster

Written by James DiEugenio
Although [Bundy] thought [Halberstam's The Best and the Brightest] was an entertaining and informative read, he concluded that the central thesis was just wrong. It was not the advisers—the best and brightest—who did the staff work who got us into the Vietnam War. It was the difference in the men who occupied the Oval Office. It was the difference between Kennedy and Johnson, writes Jim DiEugenio.
Monday, 29 November 2010 19:45

James Blight, Virtual JFK (Part 2)

Written by
The book is well worth buying. In my view, it closes the chapter on a debate that has been going on since 1992. As shown here, it's a debate that should have never started, concludes Jim DiEugenio.
Friday, 05 November 2010 22:47

Douglas Horne, Inside the ARRB (Part IV)

Written by
I stand in awe of the scope, detail, and profound insights that Horne has achieved, especially in the medical evidence – to say nothing of his Olympian effort. ... The bottom line is that I feel a deep debt of gratitude to Horne for further disentangling this nearly half-century old Gordian knot. By contrast, I should emphasize that I never experienced that sensation with Bugliosi, writes David Mantik.
Saturday, 16 October 2010 23:25

Douglas Horne, Inside the ARRB

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There is much of value [in this book], if you are willing to spend a lot of time sifting through five volumes. If it had been half as long, it might have been twice as good, writes Jim DiEugenio.
Wednesday, 08 September 2010 18:00

David C. Heymann, Bobby and Jackie: A Love Story

Written by Lisa Pease
While I dislike intensely what [Heymann has] written, I can imagine the situation from his point of view. In his mind, he's a crafty guy who figured out a way to make a great living, while breaking, to my knowledge, no enforceable laws to do so. That he broke all laws of decency and historical faithfulness, if you put yourself in his shoes, is beside the point, writes Lisa Pease.
David Mantik’s extensive review of Don Thomas’s book has been overhauled and revised; it now appears on his own website. We have removed the now superseded version which first appeared on the CTKA site. Final Version at TheMantikView
Thomas shows how people like Luis Alverez, John Lattimer and Larry Sturdivan all constructed dubious theories “for the purpose of explaining away the obvious reason for the head snap, and all suffer, not only from implausibility, but from a failure to fit the evidence.”  This is the true strength of the book and the reason why I believe it will be such a valuable contribution to the literature, writes Martin Hay.
If we are to be serious about historical revisionism, we need to have explanations built on the best facts available. If we ignore basic facts and instead present the facts as we would prefer, we are creating a work of fiction – which this book resembles a great deal, writes Joseph Green.
James DiEugenio reviews Dean T. Hartwell's book on forty years of government cover-ups.
"First of all, let's talk about what you won't find in this book. It's not about how extraterrestrials are abducting human beings, or the Apollo moon landing being a colossal hoax perpetrated by NASA, or that Barack Obama somehow is not a natural-born American citizen. I leave these speculations to others, not that I take them seriously." [from the opening chapter]
Wednesday, 21 April 2010 13:30

The 13th Juror

Written by
This is a valuable book to have. Between its covers it proves by a preponderance of the evidence – and maybe more than that – how Ray was set up, and then how King was actually killed. It also shows why the media avoided the trial, and why Ray was not allowed to have his criminal case reopened, writes Jim DiEugenio.
Sunday, 28 March 2010 15:27

Russ Baker, Family of Secrets

Written by
What Baker does with the JFK and Watergate episodes is symptomatic of the rest of the book. He wants to somehow implicate the Bushes in crimes for which there is next to no evidence, while not reporting on the ones for which there is plenty of evidence, writes Jim DiEugenio.
Tuesday, 16 March 2010 16:05

Rodger Remington, Biting the Elephant

Written by
An account of its author's attempts to correspond with, and perhaps understand, several prominent lone nut supporters, reviewed by Jim DiEugenio.
Tuesday, 02 March 2010 18:11

David Aaronovitch, Voodoo Histories

Written by Joseph E. Green
If the author had truly been serious about writing an overview of conspiracies, he might have left behind the large package of straw men gathered in this book ... [and] instead chosen from any number of real historical events, such as the 1846 invasion of Mexico led by Zachary Taylor, the 1898 bombing of the Maine leading to the Spanish-American War, Operation Paperclip, Operation Gladio, the Manhattan Project, the coup of Salvador Allende, the Gulf of Tonkin incident, Iran Contra ... there are endless examples, of which these are but a few, writes Joseph Green.
S&V bemoan the "crippled epistemology" of conspiracy believers. Ironically, they themselves suffer from a profound, even mortal, wound in their own epistemology – i.e., they persistently ignore the difference between lies and truth, writes David Mantik.

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