Loading...
Friday, 19 February 2021 18:00

Fred Litwin: Culture Warrior

Written by

Litwin’s Follies concludes: Fred finds his mentor. He and David Horowtiz blow up the decade of the sixties. Forget JFK and his assassination, we must learn to love Rudy Giuliani, W, and the Iraq War.


Although this has been a long review, I am not exaggerating when I write it could easily have been much longer. I have left out many things for reasons of expediency. For example, Litwin does not mention the infamous CIA agent Bernardo DeTorres as an early infiltrator into Garrison’s office. DeTorres was later called as a witness before the HSCA. One reason being that he reportedly had pictures of Dealey Plaza in a safe deposit box. A second being he was in communication with people who talked about the assassination before it occurred. (DiEugenio, Destiny Betrayed, Second Edition, pp. 227–28) Further, David Ferrie’s colleague for raids into Cuba—and a suspect in the JFK case—Eladio Del Valle, was found killed, within 24 hours of Ferrie’s death. The report written up for Garrison read, “He was shot in the chest and it appears ‘gangland style’ and his body was left in the vicinity of BERNARDO TORRES’ apartment." (ibid) If those two deaths, along with DeTorres’ infiltration, do not at least suggest attempts to cripple Garrison’s inquiry, then what does?

Further, as already mentioned, Ferrie had a map of Dealey Plaza in his desk drawer at work; Sergio Arcacha Smith reportedly had diagrams of the sewer system in Dealey Plaza at his apartment in Dallas; and now DeTorres had pictures of Dealey Plaza in his safe deposit box. In the face of all this, who is deluded? Most objective people would say its Litwin. He doesn’t have to deal with the question since he leaves it all out.

The portrait of Oswald in On the Trail of Delusion is pretty much the Warren Commission’s view of the sociopathic leftist. (pp. 25–26). Litwin achieves this, as he usually does, by leaving out important information. In Oswald’s teen years, Litwin does not mention David Ferrie and the Civil Air Patrol. Even though there are numerous witnesses on the record today testifying to Oswald’s attendance at CAP meetings. (John Armstrong, Harvey and Lee, pp. 123–25) We also have a picture of Ferrie with Oswald in the CAP which was produced by PBS Frontline back in 1993. When Oswald leaves for the USSR in the fall of 1959, Litwin does not mention the CIA/ONI fake defector program; or Otto Otepka and his request to the CIA about that program. He wanted to know which defectors—including Oswald—were genuine and which were not. (Armstrong, pp. 306–08; see also Lisa Pease, Probe Magazine, Vol. 4 No. 3)

Since Litwin never mentions Otepka’s request, he does not have to address the fact that it was only at this time—December of 1960—that the CIA opened a 201 file on Oswald. This was thirteen months after he arrived in the USSR and announced he wished to renounce his American citizenship. Even Richard Helms was amazed that it took so long to open up this quite common file on a known Marine who defected to the USSR at the height of the Cold War. (John Newman, Oswald and the CIA, p. 51) But today we know that not only was the 201 file delayed, but the routing of incoming documents on Oswald was diverted in order not to create a 201 file. The HSCA and their analyst Betsy Wolf were onto this very odd arrangement. But Wolf’s milestone discoveries do not exist in the HSCA report or volumes. (Click here for details) Therefore, with what we know today, by 1960 there existed grounds for reasonable suspicion that Oswald was, at the very least, an asset of the CIA.

With all the above noted about Oswald, need I add the last? Litwin does not review the present pile of evidence that Oswald worked out of Guy Banister’s office in the summer of 1963. (DiEugenio, Destiny Betrayed, second edition, pp.109–14) Or that the FBI covered this up. (Newman, p. 310) Litwin’s profile of Oswald is utterly worthless.

What kind of a researcher is Litwin? In his Introduction, he writes that Oliver Stone teamed up with this reviewer to produce a documentary. That film will use the book Destiny Betrayed “to once again foist Jim Garrison on the American people.”He then explains that this is why he wrote his book on Garrison. (p. xix) Can the man be real? All Litwin had to do was email me, Oliver Stone, Stone’s secretary, or producer Rob Wilson and he would have discovered that what he just wrote was, once again, wrong. Oliver Stone liked the title, but the film is not based on Destiny Betrayed, not even close. The film is really built around the declassifications of the Assassination Records Review Board. It deals in large part with the ballistics and medical evidence that was finally set free as a result of that act. The material that Litwin tries to deny even existed. The production filmed 29 interviews. We only did one in the New Orleans area. The plurality of interview subjects were people like Dr. Gary Aguilar, Dr. David Mantik, forensic pathologist Cyril Wecht, former professor and surgeon Dr. Donald Miller, world famous criminalist Henry Lee, and ARRB analyst Doug Horne. In other words, this material is much more aligned with Litwin’s first book, which Dave Mantik wrecked, and which with I made the debris bounce a bit.

From the beginning, I had serious problems with the work of Fred Litwin. As I noted in Part One, anyone who can write that there is no true indication in the JFK case of evidentiary fraud and misrepresentation, that person is simply not being candid with the reader. The radical alterations in the original autopsy evidence by the Ramsey Clark Panel is a prima facie case of alterations of the record. The now revealed trail of CE 399 is another. (Click here for details) I presented both of these aspects in my book, The JFK Assassination: The Evidence Today. As I have shown, Litwin denied that I had any witnesses or paperwork to demonstrate these facts. As I replied in Part One, that was a false statement. I had a surfeit of evidence with which to do so. And since he had my book in front of him, he had to know this.

All of the above was puzzling to this reviewer. But when I later read that Litwin was also denying there was any disruption of policy between John Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson over Vietnam, that was even more startling. Now Litwin was denying evidence that was historical in nature, not forensic. (Litwin, On the Trail of Delusion, p. 270) When he called Kennedy a Cold Warrior, that was the clincher. (Ibid, p. 271) No one today can make such a statement in the face of the current scholarship on this issue. (Click here for details)

I now figured there had to be something lurking behind all of this. Something in Litwin’s past that would motivate it. So I decided to dig deeper. I actually read Litwin’s first book, Conservative Confidential. I think I struck the Mother Lode as far as Litwin’s modus vivendi.


II

In the United States, many of us are familiar with the unattractive personage of David Horowitz. Well, in Conservative Confidential, Litwin says that he was both inspired and entranced by a book Horowitz wrote called The Politics of Bad Faith. (Litwin, p. 19, references are to the e book version, so they may differ slightly) I was familiar with Horowitz from reading about him for my two part essay, The Posthumous Assassination of John F. Kennedy. Horowitz was a part of the illustrious Ramparts magazine back in the sixties and early seventies. From 1964-69, under the editorship of Warren Hinckle, that magazine soared to an apogee of journalistic excellence that has been unmatched in any venue since. Let me quote my eulogy for Hinckle about this matter:

But to detail the contents of what the magazine exposed about America, who Hinckle decided to take on, the methods he employed and the price he was willing to pay, all these-and more-were, to my knowledge, unprecedented before him, and unmatched afterwards. Ramparts was so effective and influential that it became a regular target of the MSM, especially Time magazine and the New York Times, which obviously did not like being exposed as the poseurs they were. Beyond that, the CIA launched operations against Ramparts. These were commissioned by Desmond Fitzgerald, supervised by Richard Ober, and executed by Edgar Applewhite. As detailed in his book Secrets, the late Angus McKenzie showed how this program grew into MHCHAOS, the massive CIA spying on and infiltration of leftist protest groups in that decade.

I won’t go into all the bombshell stories Hinckle printed that got the CIA angry with him. You can read this article for that information. (Click here for details) Suffice it to say, no other magazine I know of did more to expose the lies about the Vietnam War than did Ramparts under Hinckle. Hinckle also covered the JFK assassination, as he understood from his reading of the Commission volumes that something was rotten in Denmark. But further, Ramparts was one of the very few journals that covered Jim Garrison fairly.

This unprecedented, brilliant, inspiring run all came crashing down due to internal dissension over Hinckle’s management style; mainly his perceived profligacy. After an in-house rebellion, Hinckle was out and the two new leaders were Robert Scheer and Horowitz. Horowitz then moved Scheer out and replaced him with the late Peter Collier. The approach of the magazine now changed. It became much more doctrinaire leftist, featuring writers like Alexander Cockburn, Noam Chomsky and Jonathan Kozol. It began to lose circulation. Perhaps seeing the writing on the wall, Horowitz and Collier transitioned out. They met with two members of the Rockefeller family who had backed the magazine. They now arranged temporary management for Ramparts, while they worked on their book, The Rockefellers: An American Dynasty.

Ramparts fell in 1975. The next year, the Rockefeller book became a bestseller. The duo now wrote successful books about famous American families like the Fords, the Roosevelts and the Kennedys. Although Litwin says that Horowitz was involved in a rethinking of left-wing politics in the nineties, this is not really accurate. (Conservative Confidential, p. 20) Horowitz voted for Ronald Reagan in 1984 and he and Collier wrote an infamous article about their transformation in 1985. (See Washington Post, 3/17/85) In that article, the duo pretty thoroughly denounced everything that Ramparts ever stood for.

David Horowitz has become a media provocateur against the Democratic Party and what he calls “the Left”—without differentiating between the two. For instance he once wrote that pipe bombs sent to Democratic politicians and CNN were false-flag operations, he supported the Alabama senatorial candidate Roy Moore, an accused pedophile, he called for the jailing of Hillary Clinton, and he was all in for Donald Trump. Through his David Horowitz Freedom Center, he has become a millionaire. (Chris Smith, California Magazine, Spring 2019)

In Conservative Confidential Litwin describes various parallels with Horowitz. For example, in his book Litwin describes himself growing up as a Jewish socialist. He adds that he received a liberal education at Dawson College in Montreal. (p. 19) He then says he participated in left-wing activities, like anti-nuclear demonstrations, at Concordia University. Litwin seems to imply that he took his Horowitz/like right turn as a result of the 9/11 attacks. (ibid)

There was something odd about this passage. First of all, Litwin writes near the beginning of the book that he worked on Wall Street for six years from 1985–91. (p. 14) Prior to that, he started his career on Bay Street in Toronto. (p. 18) Bay Street is the rough equivalent of Wall Street in Canada. He also spent about six years in the Far East—Singapore and Hong Kong—working for the huge computer company Intel. Today, Intel has annual revenues of about 70 billion per year and net income of about 20 billion. Was he still partaking in anti-nuke demonstrations in Hong Kong, and on Wall Street and Bay Street? While relying on his paycheck from Intel in the Far East? This is how he addresses the entire issue of his leftist activism in his nearly 20 years in the world of high finance and Intel processor sales: “This wasn’t always easy, working for The Man. But I managed.” (p.18) Since he does not describe very much at all about those years—he was in England for three years which he describes even less—it is a fair question to ask.


III

Litwin returned to Canada in 2000. He made his home in Ottawa and got into the music business. At this point he now describes his growing empathy for Horowitz and his writings, and then his reaction to 9/11. The explosions that took place that day inspired him to declare that Canada must stand with the USA. (p. 15) He writes that Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s actions were inspiring to him. He also adds that George W. Bush’s speech was “strong and quite moving.” (p. 17) He then says that the left’s reaction was bewildering to him. He names people like journalist Robert Fisk, author Naomi Klein and professor Michael Chossudovsky, He then of course adds Noam Chomsky. (pp. 24–34)

If one looks carefully, there are two shell games going on in the above paragraph. From the likes of Collier and Horowitz, I am quite familiar with the technique. But one must be informed of a few facts to understand it. First, President Clinton had tried to kill Osama Bin Laden before 9/11. (Click here for details) Clinton had placed a strong emphasis on combating terrorism, and his top man on the issue, Richard Clarke, had put together a plan to do so. This was sidelined once George W. Bush got into office. Clarke was demoted. The Bush administration more or less ignored the problem, even when Clarke tried to push it on them. (Click here for details)

After 9/11, the Bush administration fumbled an opportunity to kill Bin Laden in December of 2001 at the Battle of Tora Bora. They failed to tactically cut off his escape routes. He therefore retreated into Pakistan. It was left to Barack Obama to finally terminate him. (Click here for details)

There is a similar underlying pattern with Litwin’s admiration for Giuliani. Once he became mayor in 1994, Rudy Giuliani was all but oblivious to the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. (Village Voice, 6/31/2007, article by Wayne Barrett) He did have one sarin gas drill in 1995, but it turned into such a disaster that he cancelled the follow up exercise. It was not until 27 months after he became mayor that Giuliani devised an Office of Emergency Management (OEM). He then placed it in Building 7 of the World Trade Center. His excuse was that he wanted to be able to walk there quickly. (ibid) He never did conduct what is called a high-rise drill; and partly because of inferior communications equipment, 121 firefighters never got out of the North Tower. Finally, as Barrett describes, no one in Giuliani’s administration had a top secret clearance on 9/11. Which is shocking in and of itself.

After Bin Laden escaped from Tora Bora, the Bush Administration—for reasons no one understands even today—decided to invade Iraq. There is no other way to say this, even though Litwin denies it. (See Conservative Confidential, p. 54). There is little doubt that W was involved due to the Downing Street Memo. (Click here for details) But there is really no doubt Bush was directly involved with provoking the war due to the Manning Memorandum. In that one he actually talks about making up excuses to provoke a war with Iraq. (Click here for details) The Bush administration deceived the American public about the reasons for this invasion. In my opinion, and in the view of a man that Litwin liked, Vince Bugliosi, Bush should have been removed from office for this. (See Bugliosi’s book, The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder)

There is no way to sugarcoat it: the assault on Iraq was the worst American foreign policy disaster since Lyndon Johnson invaded Vietnam in 1965. Even Donald Trump said so. And he used this to knock Jeb Bush out of the race in 2016. (Click here for details) The war cost about 2 trillion, and according to one credible study, took the lives of 650,00 Iraqis. (Business Insider, 2/6/2020; The Lancet, June of 2006) And it was all based on a pack of lies (i.e. the mythological WMD). But that does not even consider the blowback factor: the growing strength of al-Qaeda and the rise of ISIS.

Try and find any of this information in Litwin’s book. I took extensive notes and I could not. Yet it is crucial in understanding the utter failure on 9/11 and afterwards. The other shell game is, of course, using people like Robert Fisk to represent “the left”and the Democratic Party. When one removes that Horowitz type chimera, its logical to conclude that the Democrats did a better job fighting terrorism than the Republicans did. But this does not fit Litwin’s new found philosophy or agenda.


IV

Like Horowitz, before 9/11, Litwin deplored the concept of “identity politics.” As he describes it, upon his return to Canada the nation had become “obsessed”with that subject. And the idea of “visible minorities”had become to him “a kind of mantra.” Like Collier and Horowitz, Litwin’s punchline in all this is that this concept was now a substitute for “the principle that merit should be the foremost consideration in employment….” (Litwin, Conservative Confidential, p. 20)

As Collier and Horowitz used it, the argument about ignoring the idea of merit is what political consultants call a “wedge issue.” It appeals to the so-called “angry white man/Archie Bunker”vote. In political terms it is used to split the classic FDR coalition of working class Americans joining with minorities.

As Litwin then writes, the nominal phrase for the formal program is affirmative action. What Litwin does not say is that John F. Kennedy was the first American president to sign an executive order in that regard. The order meant that his administration would seek out qualified minority members for hiring.

On the day he was inaugurated, Kennedy was puzzled by the fact that, almost a hundred years after the Civil War, there were no black Americans in the Coast Guard parade. He called his Secretary of the Treasury, Douglas Dillon, and asked him to find out why. At his first Cabinet meeting, Kennedy told everyone to bring statistics about how many minority members were in each department. When he read the results he was stunned. Not only because of the extremely low numbers, but also because the numbers were mostly at the lower rungs of the employment scale. He signed his affirmative action order on March 6, 1961. He then extended it to include not just hiring, but government contracting. In other words, if you were involved with the defense industry in the south, you had to seek out minority workers, or risk closing your doors. This was the beginning of Kennedy tearing down Jim Crow Laws in the south. (Click here for details) No president had ever done anything approaching what Kennedy did on the issue before him.

This was one of the real problems I had with the shabby Collier/Horowitz book on the Kennedy family, The Kennedys: An American Drama. With those two, whenever they talked about Bobby Kennedy trying to preserve his brother’s legacy, they would often phrase the term as “the Legacy.” (Collier and Horowitz, E book. p. 283) To make that work, they suppressed President Kennedy’s achievement in civil rights, and also his reforms from Eisenhower in foreign policy. With their monomaniacal approach, they could do that. As with his mentor, Litwin does the same with the words “progressive”and “anti-war,” except he places them in quotes. (See page 20 for an example)

As with Collier and Horowitz, I was puzzled by what Litwin’s quotes signified. I mean, don’t some people call themselves progressive? Don’t others call themselves anti-war? What would one term Representative Ayanna Pressley? Wasn’t Eugene Debs anti-war? To the point he went to prison for that stance? One has to read what Litwin writes about Horowitz to comprehend this trope. In my view, reading Horowitz helps—at least partly—to understand the approach to all three of Litwin’s books.

Litwin praises another book by Horowitz, this one was called Destructive Generation. That volume had the same theme as the Collier/Horowitz 1986 “Second Thoughts”conference in Washington. It was a way for them to vociferously attack everything that came out of the decade of the sixties. (James DiEugenio and Lisa Pease, The Assassinations, p. 357). With more foundation money, they then sponsored a follow up conference called “Second Thoughts on Race in America.” Like their coming out article in 1985, this was done with the cooperation of reporters and writers from The Washington Post, which, at that time was helmed by JFK’s false friend Ben Bradlee. Therefore, this conjunction made perfect sense. (Click here for details)

In Destructive Generation, Collier and Horowitz wrote a revealing passage that pretty much laid bare their agenda:

Just as Eisenhower’s holding pattern in the fifties led to JFK’s New Frontier liberalism in the sixties…so the clamped down Reaganism of the eighties has precipitated the current radical resurgence. (DiEugenio and Pease, p. 357)

For me, the above distilled who these men were. How could anyone call what Eisenhower and John Foster Dulles did in the fifties a holding pattern? The overthrows of Arbenz in Guatemala, and Mossadegh in Iran, the attempted overthrow of Sukarno in Indonesia, and the eventual successful murder of Patrice Lumumba in Congo-those were holding patterns? That is pure bunk. Those were all attempts to use the CIA to stifle and destroy legitimate republics in the Third World. Was this what Litwin and Horowitz meant about standing up for freedom and liberty? It seemed to me kind of similar to the deaths of those 650,000 Iraqis.

As per Eisenhower’s domestic policy, in my opinion its most prominent feature was its utter failure in civil rights. Eisenhower had many opportunities to finally fulfill the promise of the so-called party of Lincoln. He failed each time. He advised Earl Warren to vote negatively in the epochal Brown vs. Board Case. Which means he wanted to keep Jim Crow alive. At the crisis at Central High in Little Rock Arkansas, for three weeks he allowed the Jim Crow governor of the state, Orval Faubus, to terrorize students who were attending the school under the Brown vs Board decision. It was only after he had been humiliated by a Faubus double cross that he sent in troops to finally protect the students. In another case, Eisenhower allowed an admitted African American student, Autherine Lucy, to be literally run off the campus at the University of Alabama. (Click here for details)

How was any of this standing up for freedom and liberty? (Litwin, p.20)


V

Here is the rub: It was John Kennedy who turned both of these Eisenhower stances around. It was Kennedy who was trying to stand up for liberty and freedom at home and abroad. The 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments should have granted African Americans citizenship and voting rights. Because of later Supreme Court decisions, referenced in the article above, and because of state laws, this was not the case. As noted above, President Eisenhower and Vice President Nixon had perfect opportunities to do something about Jim Crow and discrimination. They did next to nothing. In many ways what they did made the problem fester and magnify. In other words, it created a mess for President Kennedy and Attorney General Robert Kennedy. JFK ended up doing more for the cause of civil rights in less than three years, than Eisenhower, Truman and FDR did in three decades. And it wasn’t even close. (See the chart at the end of that linked article.) This was part of the legacy that Horowitz and Collier were trying to belittle.

His very first week in office, Kennedy was attempting to reverse the Eisenhower/Nixon doctrine of undermining legitimate republics in the Third World. Not knowing that the Eisenhower/Allen Dulles attempt to kill Patrice Lumumba had ultimately succeeded, Kennedy was busy overturning that policy in order to bolster the constitutional and democratically elected Lumumba government. This included replacing the ambassador. (Richard Mahoney, JFK: Ordeal in Africa, pp. 63–65, 80) With the creation of the Alliance for Progress, he also tried to do something about the numerous CIA interventions in Latin America. (Click here for details) The Kennedy administration seriously thought of replacing the Shah of Iran in order to foster a more republican form of government there. (Robert Dreyfuss, Devil’s Game, pp. 224—25) Instead of undermining Sukarno in the Far East, Kennedy built a relationship with Indonesia which included sending economic advisors to suggest reforms in the economy. He even promised to visit Sukarno in 1964. (Greg Poulgrain, JFK vs. Allen Dulles: Battleground Indonesia, p. 257)

Eisenhower allowing Jim Crow to persist, and undermining legitimate republics in the Third World was not standing up for liberty and freedom. To me, it was Kennedy who was standing up for liberty and freedom, both at home and abroad. But try and find any of this in the Collier/Horowitz book. When you do, please let me know. That book actually states that Kennedy was not withdrawing from Vietnam at the time of his death. (pp. 275, 279)

The Collier/Horowitz book contains one of the oddest, most singular treatments of John Kennedy’s assassination in the literature. What makes it odd is this: They don’t describe it at all. No arrival at Love Field, no motorcade route, no shots ringing out, no race to Parkland, no announcement of Kennedy’s death by Malcolm Kilduff. In fact, they stop the story even before the trip to Texas. They close that long section of the book on President Kennedy with the impression that Kennedy was staying in Vietnam, and giving Bobby Baker—of all people—the last word on President Kennedy. (Collier and Horowitz, p. 279)

Make no mistake, this was a cool and deliberate decision on their part. By treating it that way, and ignoring everything I have noted above, the impression left for the reader is this: Nothing happened in Dallas on November 22, 1963. Yet, to name just two instances, in about 8 months, LBJ is going to declare war on North Vietnam. And in about the same time frame, America’s policy toward Sukarno will be reversed from one of support, to one of taking covert action to remove him from office. These reversals would provoke cataclysmic results: a long and bloody war in Vietnam featuring American combat troops, something JFK would not even contemplate; and the overthrow of Sukarno, which would lead to the death of over 500,000 innocent civilians.

To any informed person, as far as history goes, the book is a piece of junk. And it’s no coincidence that it was published the year before the duo got their feature story “Lefties for Reagan”in The Washington Post. As I have shown, the Katherine Graham/Ben Bradlee regime greatly appreciated this kind of denigration. But as far as the book’s utility went, I once pointed out what seemed to me the purpose of the volume. And also the future preoccupation of the authors: “If your function is to discredit a decade, what better way to do it than to smear the man most responsible for ushering it in.” (DiEugenio and Pease, p. 357)

To someone like this reviewer Horowitz is now—and has been for a long time—a carnival barker, a rightwing clown. He once said:

Obama is an anti-American radical and I'm actually sure he’s a Muslim, he certainly isn’t a Christian. He’s a pretend Christian in the same way he’s a pretend American. (8/21/14 interview on “Today’s Issues")

In 2001, at about the time Litwin discovered him, he said that black America should still be grateful for Lincoln winning the Civil War. This was 136 years after the war’s end. (Frontpage Magazine, 1/3/2001) But even before that he said, “If blacks are oppressed in America, why isn’t there a black exodus?” (Salon, 8/16/99)

This was Litwin’s political savior? At least for awhile. To be fair, toward the end of Conservative Confidential, he notes that he had become disenchanted with the American rightwing because of their shortcomings on homosexuality and their extreme Islamophobia.


VI

The name Horowitz gave to his first foundation was the Center for the Study of Popular Culture. Based in Los Angeles, he wanted it to create a conservative presence in Movieland. The aim was to show that America’s popular culture had actually become something of a political battleground.

This was another pattern that Litwin followed in Canada. He first tried to create a conservative book club. (Conservative Confidential, p. 54) When that did not go over very well he established both a blog and a film festival series. The first film he booked was Obsession: Islam’s War Against the West. That picture was highly praised by Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity. With just that description, and those accolades, one would wonder why Litwin calls his film group the Free Thinking Film Society. But it shows that, like Horowitz, his agenda is to influence the media by somehow portraying conservatives as being victims of a liberal media culture.

This characteristic is particularly acute in his attacks on the Canadian Broadcast Corporation. (Conservative Confidential, Chapter 7) The ferocity of his attack on the CBC had me thinking that it had some kind of monopoly on broadcasting in Canada. And Canadians were having it forced down their throats against their will. So I called up Len Osanic to ask him if such was the case. It wasn’t. Len informed me that the vast majority of Canada has cable TV. And the outlying frontier areas have satellite. I also learned that streaming is becoming a market e.g. Hulu. What this means is simple: Canadians pick their package of channels they wish to view. Len told me that in Vancouver, his system allows you to choose fifty channels on the first tier. You can chose more, for a premium, on the second tier. In other words, one does not even have to choose the CBC. Len also told me that Fox is available, along with Discovery and the History Channel. (Osanic interview 2/10/21)

When I was informed of this, I now discovered another pattern with Litwin. Like American right wingers, he wants the public to have a limited choice of what they can see. The reason he has it out for the CBC is simple, he does not think they are fair to Israel, and he really does not like the fact that they present the view that the JFK case was likely a conspiracy. (I Was a Teenage JFK Conspiracy Freak, p. 188)

The Fifth Estate is the CBC’s equivalent of Sixty Minutes. Litwin blistered the show for having Jeff Morley on for an interview. (Click here for details) In fact, in addition to not wanting anyone to think LBJ made serious changes in Kennedy’s foreign policy, he also wants the reader to think that there has been no important information declassified by the Review Board. (Ibid, p. 193) In other words, there was nothing to see in the two million pages of documents declassified by the ARRB. And there was evidently nothing to see in the many interviews for the ARRB medical investigation. As I showed in the first part of this review, critiquing Litwin’s first book on the JFK case, this is simply not accurate, not by a long shot. Litwin can deny it from here until eternity but the ARRB inquiry helped redefine the core evidence in the JFK case.

In the USA, this rightwing pressure eventually worked. The last two JFK specials that PBS produced, “Who was Lee Harvey Oswald?”in 1993 on Frontline, and “Cold Case JFK”on Nova in 2013, were attempts to revive the bloody corpse of the Warren Report. The problem was that they were both false at their foundations. (Click here for a review of the 2013 show) As Pat Speer has demonstrated, what they did in 1993 with the fingerprint evidence was simply a disgrace. (Click here and scroll down) I would hope that the Powers that Be in Ottawa are not influenced by the likes of Litwin.

To understand Fred Litwin one must understand his entire political calculus. It’s not easy to do. Conservative Confidential is one of the most boring books ever composed. For the same reason that Horowitz’s books are so dull. Like most propaganda, they are repetitive and predictable. Once one understands the game being played, one sees how limited and constricted the data and analysis is. And one can also understand that there will be no intellectual elucidation from the exercise. For anyone who knows the JFK case, Litwin’s two books are not just boring, they are rather insulting. Since they assume the reader is ignorant or stupid. Thus is usually the case with Culture Warriors like Bill O'Reilly. On those grounds Litwin’s work is completely disposable, not even worth purchasing.

But I want to close this series with a message not just about Fred Litwin, but about Paul Hoch. He, like Walt Brown, has always had the hatchet out for Garrison. Brown likes to call Garrison “a loser.” My question to Walt would be, who has ever “won”anything on the JFK case. Certainly not the Warren Commission; neither did the final phase of the HSCA; we now know the ARRB was also played. Inversely, I would also refer the reader to Brown’s bandying about the alleged Mac Wallace fingerprint evidence at the 40th anniversary of JFK’s death. He walked into the Dallas Police station, telling anyone who would listen that somehow the case could be reopened. He then went on Nigel Turner’s The Men Who Killed Kennedy series and said he could go into court with that evidence. As we all know today, under stringent forensic testing, that piece of evidence turned out to be ersatz. (Click here for details) This is the guy who called Garrison a “loser.”

Hoch’s excuse for his vitriol was that there was a movement to create a congressional committee to investigate the JFK case in 1966. Garrison’s inquiry sidelined it. This disregards the fact that there was a congressional committee appointed about ten years later. As I have noted in this review, we know what happened to it. We also know that Hoch’s comments to Litwin on the work of Vincent Guinn and Tom Canning are provable malarkey. But beyond that, the HSCA was set up without J. Edgar Hoover, Dick Helms and James Angleton in power. Does any objective person think the results would have been different with those three men in power? I would like to hear the argument for that.

As I have noted elsewhere, if anyone can show me anything of value that Hoch has produced on this case in the last 30 years, I would like to see it. His comments on the critics in the rough cut of Max Good’s film on Ruth Paine are, to me, a bit repulsive. In addition to that, his associations with people opposing the critics are notable. He would usually explain this by saying that he offers “help”to anyone.

According to Litwin, that is not what happened with his book on Jim Garrison. On the (unnumbered) page 335, Litwin writes that Hoch “has patiently reviewed my book and notes and his suggestions have improved the book considerably.” In other words, Hoch served as an editor for On the Trail of Delusion. Not only did the alleged critic have no problem with the text, he approved the references to archives like those of Dick Billings and Irvin Dymond. He apparently felt no necessity to qualify the result. Which I have spent over 50 pages exposing as literary rubbish. To any objective person, if one needed any more proof, this should finish Hoch as being any kind of a critic.

I will never be in the same room with Paul Hoch again.

Click here for Fred Litwin, On the Trail of Delusion – Part Three.

Last modified on Sunday, 14 March 2021 20:57
James DiEugenio

One of the most respected researchers and writers on the political assassinations of the 1960s, Jim DiEugenio is the author of two books, Destiny Betrayed (1992/2012) and The JFK Assassination: The Evidence Today (2018), co-author of The Assassinations, and co-edited Probe Magazine (1993-2000).   See "About Us" for a fuller bio.

Find Us On ...

Sitemap

Please publish modules in offcanvas position.