So far we’ve seen two examples of General Walker’s role in the right-wing propaganda coming out of Dallas following the JFK Assassination: (1) his December 1963 book, The Assassination Story; and (2) the German newspaper article of November 29, 1963. In this post we’ll look at another example; one that surprised Supreme Court Chief Justice Earl Warren himself, namely, the May 1964 headline article in the National Enquirer.
The Warren Commission (WC) had been running smoothly for five months, with five more months to go. Before dawn on May 5, 1964, an FBI agent woke J. Edgar Hoover with some bad news. A tabloid newspaper had accused the WC of dishonesty, deception and of conspiring with Communists, the NAACP and the FBI to conceal a Communist plot that killed JFK. Hoover rushed to his office where he found a copy of the article on his desk waiting for him. There was the bold headline: LINK RUBY AND OSWALD.
The WC had FBI agents all over the US digging for LHO evidence and never found a thing to link Jack Ruby and Lee Harvey Oswald (LHO). J. Edgar Hoover knew that LBJ and Chief Justice Warren would be upset that this scandal rag (with millions of readers) had publicly disrespected the President’s Commission.
The article alleged that a conspiracy involving the FBI, the WC and the Liberals, strove to conceal the Communist plot that killed JFK. Hoover woke Warren with the news. Warren winced that this scandal had forced itself to the top of his schedule. Hoover was upset because all relevant FBI agents would need to double-check all their work.
With an odd familiarity, this National Enquirer article named General Edwin Walker as a main attraction in the JFK investigation. The April 10, 1963 shooting at Walker in his Dallas home was the centerpiece of the article.
Chief Justice Warren instructed his secretary to schedule the FBI Assistant Director, namely Alan Belmont, to appear before the President’s Commission the very next day. Warren himself would question Belmont! Further, Warren himself would read from the scandalous piece into the WC record!
On May 6, 1964, Alan Belmont sat patiently as Chief Justice Warren personally read the first twelve paragraphs of this fold-out spectacle for Belmont’s explicit attention and sworn testimony. I’ll reproduce the words of Supreme Court Chief Justice Earl Warren here, as he personally reads carefully from this National Enquirer article during the hearings of the testimony of Alan Belmont:
The CHAIRMAN: (reading) “Washington – The hottest story making the rounds here is that the U.S. Justice Department prevented the arrest of Lee Harvey Oswald and Jack Ruby BEFORE the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.
"Oswald and the man who killed him, Ruby, were suspected of being partners in crime 7 months before the President's death.
"The incredible details of the story are so explosive that officials won't even answer 'no comment' when queried about it. But the story being discussed by top-level Government officials reveals:
"1. That the Justice Department deliberately kept Oswald and Ruby out of jail before the assassination.
"2. That Dallas cops suspected Oswald of being the gunman and Ruby the paymaster in a plot to murder former Maj. Gen. Edwin A. Walker-7 months before the President was assassinated.
"3. That the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency was using Ruby to recruit commandos for raids against Castro's Cuba. To prevent this explosive information from being disclosed, the CIA asked the Justice Department to step in and stop the Dallas police from arresting Jack Ruby, as well as Oswald.
"A top-secret document – a letter signed by a high official of the Justice Department-was sent in April 1963 from the Dallas Police Department to Dallas Chief of Police Jesse E. Curry requesting the Dallas police NOT to arrest Oswald and Ruby in connection with the attempted slaying of General Walker.
"After a sniper shot at, but missed, General Walker in Dallas, April 10, 1963, Dallas police suspected that Oswald was the sniper and Ruby the payoff man.
"The cops were set to arrest the pair. But they never got the chance because of the heavy pressure brought to bear by the Justice Department. And so, Oswald and Ruby were allowed to remain free. And 7 months later, on last November 22 in Dallas, Oswald was able to kill the President of the United States.
"The top-secret document – a copy of it is reportedly in the hands of the Presidential Commission investigating the assassination – bares a web of intrigue that involves the Federal Bureau of Investigation, along with the Justice Department and the Central Intelligence Agency.
"It is so politically explosive that the Presidential Commission, headed by Supreme Court Chief Justice Earl Warren, has even withheld it from one of its own members, Senator Richard Russell (D. Ga.).
"It is feared that Senator Russell, who leads the South in the fight against the civil rights bill, might use the document as a weapon against the Justice Department and its chief, Attorney General Robert Kennedy, a leader in the fight for civil rights.
"The document--requesting the cops not to arrest Ruby and Oswald-contradicts the FBI report on the assassination and the subsequent murder of Oswald."
– John Henshaw, National Enquirer Washington Bureau Chief
This article is much longer. The reader can examine the rest of it online as part of the WC Exhibits at this URL:
After listening carefully to Earl Warren’s reading from the National Enquirer for the WC record, Belmont testified that the article was “utter fantastic nonsense,” and that the FBI has no such information. The Chief Justice valued that testimony in the WC record, yet he wanted more.
Next, Earl Warren would subpoena J. Edgar Hoover.
On May 14, 1964, J. Edgar Hoover testified that he was the one who originally brought this article to the attention of the WC early in the morning of May 5, 1963, when FBI agents rushed it to him. That same morning, Hoover ordered FBI special agents in Dallas to interview DPD Chief Curry without delay. They did, and then they wrote a formal report of that FBI interview. Let’s read that full report (CE 3051):
Federal Bureau of Investigation
Date: 5/7/64, at Dallas, Texas
File #DL 100-10461
by Special Agent SAC J. GORDON SHANKLIN and SA VINCENT E.J. DRAIN:
Date distributed: 5/8/64
Chief of Police JESSE E. CURRY, Dallas Police Department, Dallas, Texas, was contacted and shown an article appearing in the May 17, 1964, issue of the “National Enquirer.”
This article was captioned, “Washington Insiders Rocked by Report of a Fantastic Letter; LINK RUBY & OSWALD; Shocked Officials Hear: U.S. Justice Dept. Letter Blocked Their Arrest Seven Months Before JFK Slaying. Washington Insiders Are Talking about a Fantastic Story Calling...RUBY & OSWALD PALS.”
This article by JOHN HENSHAW, Enquirer Washington Bureau Chief. This article was datelined Washington. Chief CURRY read this article in its entirety and very emphatically and categorically stated that:
(1) He and his Department had never heard of LEE HARVEY OSWALD prior to the assassination of President KENNEDY on November 22, 1963.
(2) The Dallas Police Department had conducted a thorough investigation concerning the attempted assassination of Major General EDWIN A. WALKER, but LEE HARVEY OSWALD had never been considered as a suspect.
(3) He had no information linking JACK RUBY and LEE HARVEY OSWALD to the plot to assassination General EDWIN A. WALKER.
(4) He had never received or heard of a letter to this Department from the Department of Justice regarding a request not to arrest LEE HARVEY OSWALD or JACK RUBY.
(5) He had never been requested by any official of the Federal Bureau of Investigation not to arrest LEE HARVEY OSWALD or JACK RUBY.
Chief CURRY concluded by stating there was absolutely no truth whatsoever to the allegations made in the article and termed them sheer fantasy and a figment of somebody’s imagination.
J. Edgar Hoover respectfully submitted this FBI report into the WC record. He was not finished, however. Since Chief Curry had just sworn that he never received any such letter, Hoover next sent FBI agents to the Justice Department to ask the Assistant Attorney General, namely, Nicholas Katzenbach, about any chance that such a letter was sent perhaps to a wrong address.
Katzenbach flatly denied that any such letter ever existed in any way, shape or form. With this official evidence, Hoover finally finished. He told Chief Justice Warren that this scandalous National Enquirer article was obviously fiction. Here are his words:
Mr. HOOVER. …I have read all of the requests that have come to the Bureau from this Commission, and I have read and signed all the replies that have come to the Commission. In addition, I have read many of the reports that our agents have made and I have been unable to find any scintilla of evidence showing any foreign conspiracy… that culminated in the assassination of President Kennedy…
Representative FORD. Is the Federal Bureau of Investigation continuing its investigation of all possible ramifications of this assassination?
Mr. HOOVER. That is correct. We are receiving and we, I expect, will continue to receive for days or weeks to come, letters from individuals that normally would probably be in the category of what we would call crank letters in which various weird allegations are made or in which people have reported psychic vibrations. We are still running out letters of that character and in turn making a report to this Commission upon it, notwithstanding the fact that on the face of it the allegation is without any foundation. Individuals who could not have known any of the facts have made some very strange statements. There have been publications and books written, the contents of which have been absurd and without a scintilla of foundation of fact. I feel, from my experience in the Bureau, where we are in constant receipt over the years of these so-called crank letters, that such allegations will be going on possibly for some years to come…
In conclusion, J. .Edgar Hoover classed this National Enquirer article in the category of “crank letters” with “weird allegations.” But a crank letter comes from the public, while the editor of the National Enquirer claimed to be the sole author, and he never divulged any other sources for this fiction. Yet this fiction looks familiar, too familiar to ignore. Let’s briefly count the similarities in both tabloid articles, from the Deutsche Nationalzeitung (DNZ) and from the National Enquirer (NEQ):
1. DNZ – General Walker is the central figure in the JFK assassination saga
NEQ – Ditto
2. DNZ – Dallas Police suspected LHO for the Walker shooting on the night of the shooting.
NEQ – Ditto
3. DNZ – US Justice Department ordered the Dallas Police to drop all charges against LHO.
NEQ – Ditto
4. DNZ – US Attorney General RFK is personally named in some connection to the secret.
NEQ – Ditto
5. DNZ – Since LHO became free again, he decided to kill JFK instead.
NEQ – Ditto
Those five points comprise the backbone of both articles. Their differences are minor by comparison. I count these key differences in the National Enquirer article only:
Jack Ruby is included in the Dallas Police suspect list as the “payoff man” for the Walker shooting.
An unnamed “high official” in the Justice Department sent a letter to the Dallas Police to ensure that LHO and Ruby were not imprisoned for the Walker shooting.
The reason for the Justice Department panic was that Jack Ruby had been a long-time gun runner in the Cuba turmoil, involving the CIA and FBI.
That Justice Department letter to drop all charges against LHO and Jack Ruby was in the hands of the WC in 1964.
That letter is officially withheld from WC member, Senator Richard Russell, because of his ongoing, right-wing political battle with RFK.
The FBI wishes to classify this letter, because it proves that their version of the murder of LHO and of the JFK Assassination in Dallas, is a fraud.
These six differences certainly add bright colors to the backbone of the National Enquirer article, but its backbone remains the same as the backbone of the German article.
General Walker always insisted that his April 1963 shooting case remains open, despite the insistence from the Dallas Police that LHO was the lone shooter, and that they interrogated and released all other plausible suspects – case closed! No, exclaimed General Walker! There were “two shooters” in April, not one. Who was the second shooter? Walker’s next-door neighbor saw two men fleeing the scene in a car. Walker worried continuously that the second shooter was always out there and could kill him at anytime. Why wouldn’t the Dallas Police keep his case open until the second shooter was found?
In May 1964, it seems that Walker and his supporters had an idea – if Jack Ruby was the second shooter, then it all ties together! They quickly wrote a sketch and connected some random dots, then rushed the article to the National Enquirer on condition of anonymity.
In the German article, “Oswald was seized” by the Dallas Police, but legal proceedings were “stopped by US Attorney General, Robert F. Kennedy” around midnight after the shooting.
In the National Enquirer article, a “top secret document” exists to prove that Jack Ruby was the second shooter. That document, allegedly addressed to Dallas Police Chief Jesse Curry, ordered Curry to back away from his two top suspects, LHO and Ruby.
Although the German article explicitly named RFK as the one who liberated LHO, the National Enquirer article explicitly named RFK as the reason that the alleged letter was never shared with Senator Richard Russell. In this sense, RFK fit that title of “a high official of the Justice Department.”
It’s a historical fact that Jack Ruby had been a gun runner for anti-Castro Cubans after the Bay of Pigs. Lots of people knew that, including Guy Banister, David Ferrie, Gerry Patrick Hemming, Loran Hall, Harry Dean – so many Americans were running guns at that time.
Yet gun running, claimed this National Enquirer article, was the “great secret” that the CIA and the Justice Department had to hide! This was the alleged reason why the Justice Department would give LHO and Jack Ruby free passes after they tried to murder General Walker in April 1963. Really?
There are too many similarities between these two scandal rag stories to dismiss. Here’s my take after comparing the 11/29/1963 German newspaper article with this May 1964 National Enquirer article.
Walker supplied all the information for both newspapers, on condition of anonymity.
Walker's hatred of RFK comes through clearly in both articles.
Walker hated RFK because RFK sent him to an insane asylum on October 1, 1962.
Walker feared RFK because, as his writings show, he was certain that RFK had sent LHO to kill him.
Walker knew “within days” and with certainty that LHO was his April shooter. Walker sincerely believed that RFK had sent LHO to kill him in the April shooting. Walker lied when he said that he never heard of LHO until the JFK murder. Walker lied when he disavowed the full contents of that German newspaper article.
The new elements merely added color and melodrama. Jack Ruby, the CIA, the FBI, the WC, the Justice Department, Senator Russell – but the general theme remained the same, namely, that General Walker was the central victim of all these top secret events!