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2021 Books

Here are some books of potential interest to our readers that were published in 2021.

Tipping Point: The conspiracy that murdered President John Kennedy, by Larry Hancock. The author of the acclaimed Someone Would Have Talked returns to the JFK case with a book which paints a compelling case for the assassination of JFK being the work of Cuban exiles and their hard-line CIA handlers. Making abundant use of the released files, Hancock tells the backstory of the "Cuba Project" and why so many of its participants came to hate Kennedy. He then tracks the "people in motion" in 1963, giving his take on potential participants as well as the roles of Lee Harvey Oswald and Jack Ruby. Published by MFF Press, with a foreword by Bill Simpich.

Garrison: The Journal of History & Deep Politics, Nov 2021. This issue is a compendium of two dozen articles, on topics including the assassinations of JFK, RFK, MLK, and Malcolm X, the CIA and the Congo, plots to kill Castro, the LBJ tapes, witnesses and researchers, and the state of declassification of government files. Authors include Jim DiEugenio, Larry Hancock, Dr. Cyril Wecht, Vince Palamara, Dr. David Mantik, Ed Tatro, Bill Kelly, Ed Curtin, Bart Kamp, Barry Ernst, David Kaiser, Rex Bradford, and others.

White Malice: The CIA and the Covert Recolonization of Africa, by Dr. Susan Williams. Author of a 2011 book that spawned a UN inquiry into the mysterious death of UN General Secretary Dag Hammerskjold (Who Killed Hammerskjold?), Susan Williams's latest book retells in detail the story of the rise and murder of Patrice Lumumba. The book sets this story in the larger context of the liberation of African colonies starting in the late 1950s, and the United States' covert actions to disrupt some of those emerging states and thwart Ghana's Kwame Nkrumah's vision of a "United States of Africa." The book includes detailed stories of figures known to many of our readers, including agents QJWIN and WIROGUE and Congo station chief Larry Devlin.

Coup in Dallas: Rgwe Decisive Investigation into Who Killed JFK, by H.P. Albarelli Jr. Reminiscent of The Man Who Knew Too Much by Dick Russell (who wrote for the foreword for Coup in Dallas), this book delves deep into connections between the JFK story and far-right militarists and even ex-Nazis, and the larger world of state-sponsored terrorism. Some names will be familiar to students of the assassination - James Angleton, Santo Trafficante, Jean Souetre, Edwin Walker, Otto Skorzeny (subject of a recent book by Ralph Ganis), and others. But what ties the stories together is a cryptic and as yet-unverified 1963 diary of a mysterious operative named Jean Pierre Lafitte, whose tantalizing entries purport to give a rough timeline of key events and players.

Dark Quadrant: Organized Crime, Big Business, and the Corruption of American Democracy from Truman to Trump, by Jonathan Marshall. In the tradition of Peter Dale Scott, with whom Marshall co-wrote Cocaine Politics, Dark Quadrant takes a close look at the murky world of political corruption and its connections to organized crime and big business. Particular focus is given to presidents Truman, Johnson, and Nixon. Some of the stories from the Johnson and Nixon eras - the Bobby Baker scandal, the TFX contract, and Nixon's connections to the Mob and to Howard Hughes - may be familiar to readers. But Marshall plumbs them to new depths and gives perspective not generally found in assassination literature.

Kennedy's Avenger, by Dan Abrams and David Fisher. This book is a detailed recounting of the trial of Jack Ruby, and includes abundant details about the insanity defense by reason of "psychomotor epilepsy" put on by lead defense attorney Melvin Belli. Readers may object to the authors' breezy agreement with the Warren Commission that Oswald acted alone, or notice that their detailed account of Ruby's meeting with Earl Warren omits Ruby's repeated pleas to be taken to Washington where Ruby could speak more freely. But in any case the focus of the book is not on those matters, but rather the trial itself, told in an engaging way. For reference, see the transcript of Ruby's trial here on MFF.

Zero Fail: The Rise and Fall of the Secret Service, by Carol Leonnig. Washington Post journalist Leonnig gives a detailed insider's history of the US Secret Service, particularly its presidential protection mission from JFK to Trump. Leonnig repeats the oft-told story that JFK waved the Secret Service off his limousine in Dallas; for a rebuttal see the work of Vince Palamara. It is also curious that no mention is made of the Chicago or Tampa threats. The post-Kennedy pages cover events both broadly known (Hinckley's attempt to kill Reagan) as well as lesser-known threats and stories. The book is based on mostly-anonymous insider accounts, and paints a portrait of an organization struggling to fulfill its mission.

The Manipulation of Lee Harvey Oswald: And The Cover-Up That Followed, by Jeffrey Meek. Long-time researcher and friend of Mary Ferrell Jeff Meek sums up his thoughts on Lee Harvey Oswald and the assassination of President Kennedy. Over the years Meek interviewed several persons associated with the case, including Ruth Paine, Secret Service agent Mike Howard, HSCA staffer Leslie Wizelman, and others. He recounts an abundant number of intriguing stories from the case - many but not all known to serious researchers - intermixed with qotes from Truman, DeGaulle, and others, and alongside his own thoughts and conclusions after 45 years of research.

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