Peter Whitmey
Abbotsford, B.C.

Published in The Third Decade, November 1990
[Updates bracketed and italicized.]

      Sometimes it doesn’t pay to listen in on other people’s conversations, especially if they might have been involved in the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. That’s apparently how a man named Richard Giesbrecht of Winnipeg, Manitoba, came to feel, looking back at the events that took place on February 13, 1964, at Winnipeg International Airport.[1]
According to a report prepared by FBI agent Merle Nelson from the Grand Forks, North Dakota, office,[2] Giesbrecht had sat down at a table in the airport lounge where he was to meet a client. Directly in front of him in the next booth were two men, one of whom was heavy set, between 45 and 50, with dark bushy hair and bushy, pronounced eyebrows, and wearing heavy-looking, plastic-framed glasses. [“bushy” only in reference to eyebrows, according to CD 645, the FBI’s six-page report] He also recalled that the other man, who had his back to Giesbrecht, appeared to be around 50 years of age, and was wearing a light tweed suit, despite the winter weather, along with two-tone brown shoes. His hair was red, he had a badly pock-marked neck, was wearing a hearing aid in his right ear, and spoke with an accent (which the FBI reportedly believed was “southern”). [The accent was described as slightly European in CD 645.]
Giesbrecht indicated to Nelson that he couldn’t help overhearing the two men’s conversation, in that they were not only discussing the assassination of President Kennedy, which had occurred three months earlier, but appeared to have inside information about the event. As summarized in the May 2, 1964, edition of the WINNIPEG FREE PRESS (the informant’s name was withheld “for security reasons”):

   …both men expressed concern over how much of the plot to kill Kennedy Lee Harvey Oswald had passed on to his wife…The pair apparently agreed that even should the Commission currently investigating the assassination conclude that Oswald was guilty, the FBI would not stop the investigation. A man named Isaacs, and his relationship with Oswald was also discussed. The pair found it odd that a man of Isaacs’ background would become mixed up with Oswald, whom they described as a “psycho.” Isaacs had apparently been spotted near the President in TV film of Mr. Kennedy’s arrival in Dallas. At the time of the airport conversation he was being followed by a man named either Hoffman or Hockman [or “Haughtman,” according to CD 645], who was to “relieve” him and destroy a 1958 model automobile Isaacs had in his possession. [Identified as a Dodge in CD 645]
The older of the two men…told his companion (that) “we have more money at our disposal now than at any other time.” He disclosed that the group of which both men were apparently a part, would be holding a meeting March 18 [1964] in a Kansas City, Missouri hotel. [identified as the Townhouse Motor Hotel, which the FBI discovered was actually in Wichita, Kansas] The group was to reserve rooms under the name of a textile concern [Giesbrecht might have heard the name “Ero Manufacturing” which Lawrence Meyers of Chicago, a friend of Jack Ruby’s, worked for, and thought he had heard “Arrow” as in shirts] The two switched their conversation and began discussing airplanes after a third man, sitting at a separate table, apparently signaled them that someone was in earshot of their discussion.
The FBI informant testified the man sitting separately stared at him, in such a manner that he got up and left the room in an attempt to locate the police…

      The Winnipeg article, with its dramatic implications, appeared on the front page under the heading “PROBE KENNEDY DEATH HERE: FBI Man visits Winnipeg to Check Assassination Clue.” The remainder of the article [which was written by Don Newman, now a distinguished CBC-NEWSWORLD Ottawa Bureau Chief] reads like a James Bond novel, as Giesbrecht attempted to leave upon realizing that the third man was not only glaring at him but had signaled to the other two men. The informant described this third man as being about 35, six feet tall, weighing 200 pounds, with a deformed nose, fair hair and flushed cheeks [which sounds a lot like the unidentified man photographed at the Russian Embassy in Mexico City, identified as “Henry Lee Oswald”]. Giesbrecht had noticed that he appeared to be left-handed, with either scars or tattoos on the fingers of that hand.
As Giesbrecht headed for the RCMP office on the ground floor of the airport, the third man pursued him, blocking his path to their office. However, Giesbrecht managed to locate a phone and was in the process of describing his experience to a corporal at the downtown RCMP office when the third man suddenly approached him, at which point he hung up and headed for the flight ready rooms on the second floor. After going through two rooms and doubling back to the main floor, he managed to elude his pursuer. He decided to contact his lawyer [whom I was later able to contact in Prince George, B.C.], and through the United States Consulate in Winnipeg was put in touch with FBI agent Nelson. Two weeks later, on February 27, Nelson, Giesbrecht and his lawyer returned to the airport, where the FBI agent made his initial report.[3] According to the WINNIPEG FREE PRESS, “the testimony is now believed in the hands of a Presidential Commission headed by U.S. Chief Justice Earl Warren.” [Although an FBI memo indicates it wasn’t provided to the Warren Commission, it must have been, as it was given a Commission Document Number—645.]
In its concluding paragraph, the FREE PRESS speculated that the informant’s testimony had again “sparked rumours that Oswald was but a cog in the plot to assassinate Kennedy. One theory holds that the plan was originated by a right-wing organization”[4]—a theory proposed by author Thomas Buchanan in a series of articles for a French newspaper, and later that year in his book WHO KILLED KENNEDY? (London: Secker and Warburg) Initially published in Britain, a revised version was released in the United States by Putnam, deleting references to possible Mafia involvement.[5] (Many of Buchanan’s suspicions were later developed in the mysterious 1968 book FAREWELL AMERICA.)[6]
Despite the Warren Commission’s assurance that Oswald had acted alone in Dallas, there was too much evidence of a conspiracy to quell a growing list of “assassination buffs” and the American public in general.[7] With the publication of RUSH TO JUDGMENT by Mark Lane and Edward Epstein’s INQUEST in mid-1966, along with numerous magazine articles on the subject, the desire for a new investigation was becoming widespread.
Even LIFE magazine, which had supported the Warren Commission’s “lone assassin” case from the beginning, dramatically reversed its position in the fall of 1966.[8] In October, editorialist Loudon Wainwright seriously questioned the Warren Commission’s findings, followed by a detailed examination of the Zapruder film (which LIFE owned) by Governor Connally and his wife.[9] The combination of Connally’s insistence that he was hit by a separate shot, and the limitations of Oswald’s antiquated Mannlicher-Carcano rifle, led LIFE to conclude that the possibility of only one assassin being involved was “a matter of reasonable doubt.”
Meanwhile, in New Orleans, where Oswald had lived both as a child and during a five-month period in 1963, the district attorney, Jim Garrison, began his own investigation in late 1966, undoubtedly influenced by the growing controversy. After the NEW ORLEANS STATES-ITEM revealed the “JFK Death Plot Probe” on Feb. 17, 1967, Garrison was forced to call a press conference at which he indicated arrests were imminent.[10] Unfortunately, one of his prime suspects, David W. Ferrie, was found dead in his apartment on Feb. 22, as Garrison’s staff gathered evidence about him.[11] (Ferrie had been interviewed by the FBI shortly after the assassination, based on a tip given to Garrison linking Ferrie to Oswald.)[12]
It didn’t take long for both the national and international media to become aware of Garrison’s investigation and events developing in New Orleans, with numerous articles appearing on the controversial district attorney. Included was a skeptical report in LIFE in early March featuring a photograph of Ferrie,[13] which had also been published in various newspapers in both the United States and Canada. Although coverage of the assassination controversy was not as extensive in Canada as in the U.S., several reports did appear, some of it pre-dating Garrison’s revelations, in MACLEAN’S,[14] SATURDAY NIGHT,[15] and CANADIAN FORUM,[16] in addition to a resurgence of American reporting.
Back in Winnipeg, whose readers had been left in the dark as to the significance of the conversation at the Winnipeg airport described in May of 1964, a local connection to the Garrison investigation was announced in the March 17, 1967, edition of the WINNIPEG FREE PRESS. This time the headline read “CONSPIRACY PROBERS MAY HEAR WINNIPEGGER—New Orleans Says It’s ‘Very Interested’ in Report Suspected Pilot Seen Here.”[17] Again agreeing not to reveal his identity, they reported that a local man, who had overheard a conversation suggesting a conspiracy in the assassination of President Kennedy three years earlier, “…feels certain that on Feb. 13 (1964) at the Winnipeg airport he saw David Ferrie, the pilot who was once investigated as an alleged ‘getaway pilot’ in the Kennedy case and who was found dead in his bed late last month before New Orleans authorities could arrest him.” According to the reporter, Peter Van Bennekom [whom I was later able to locate at UPI in Wash., D.C., where he was a senior partner], Giesbrecht noticed a photo of Ferrie in the paper [THE WINNIPEG TRIBUNE] while visiting a friend[18] in the hospital and recognized him from his false eyebrows. The reporter pointed out that Ferrie was in his late forties and wore a bushy toupee and false, bushy eyebrows, consistent with the description given by the informant in 1964, when the man had never heard of David Ferrie. (It is interesting to note that Ferrie’s name was mentioned in a staff interview—conducted by a member of the Warren Commission—an interview with a high school acquaintance of Oswald’s related to the Civil Air Patrol until they both belonged to in New Orleans under the leadership of Captain David Ferrie, who was later fired by Eastern Air Lines after being convicted of molesting several teenage boys.[19])
In his interview with Van Bennekom (who moved to Mexico City the following year),[20] the unnamed informer indicated that he had been trying to contact Garrison for three days with his story without success, which was probably due to the fact that the preliminary hearing involving a New Orleans businessman, Clay Shaw, also accused of being part of an assassination conspiracy, had just gotten underway.[21] However, Van Bennekom was able to speak with an assistant district attorney in New Orleans by the name of Michael Karmazin, who was actually not part of the investigating team (which I learned from a telephone conversation with him).[22] Karmazin told Van Bennekom that Garrison’s office was not “yet aware of the information available in Winnipeg.”[23] He went on to state that Garrison’s office would be contacted, and the informant would be “shown pictures of other people suspected by Mr. Garrison of having taken part in the plot,” in the hope that “the local informant could “identify one of the other men he saw at the airport.” Karmazin was particularly impressed with the fact that the description of one of the men from 1964 so closely matched Ferrie [except for the heavy-framed glasses, although I did later find a photo of Ferrie in his C.A.P. uniform wearing thin-framed glasses, but he could have possibly been wearing either sunglasses or reading glasses].
In regard to Ferrie’s movements at that time, Karmazin mentioned to Van Bennekom that he had very likely “made a trip to Canada, in February, 1964” and indicated that Garrison’s staff were aware of the fact that Ferrie had “been out of the country” as well as “working out of Chicago a little.” Ferrie had also made numerous phone calls to Toronto, Mexico and Central America, according to phone records seized by Garrison (from the office of New Orleans lawyer G. Wray Gill.)[24] [I later wrote an article entitled “Did David Ferrie Lie To The Secret Service?” based on the twelve pages of long-distance phone records, which showed that Ferrie had made numerous collect calls from all over the country, including Dallas, Ft. Worth and Houston, from 1961 until Dec. 1963. However, Garrison discovered that the November, 1963, phone records had not been included, although one call from Houston a week before the assassination appeared on the December telephone statement. Ferrie had told the Secret Service that he hadn’t been to Texas for at least ten years until his impromptu hunting/skating trip with two young male friends on Nov. 22.]
One call in particular, made from lawyer G. Wray Gill’s office to a hotel suite in Chicago, caught Garrison’s eye, in that the number, WH 4-4970, corresponded with another phone call, identified in Warren Commission’s exhibits (CE 2350), to the very same number.[25] In this case, the call was made from the Ero Manufacturing Company in Kansas City on the same day [incorrect; see comment below] as Ferrie’s call—Sept. 24, 1963—which happened to be the day Oswald supposedly left New Orleans for his mysterious trip to Mexico. Garrison was able to determine that the Kansas City caller was most likely Lawrence V. Meyers, an employee of Ero Manufacturers,[26] (possibly the textile concern referred to in the Winnipeg conversation.) [I later realized that the Meyers call from K. C. to the same Chicago number was made on Nov. 20, 1963, not Sept. 24, and was definitely made by Meyers, based on his own business phone records.][27] The FBI had interviewed Meyers on Dec. 4, 1963, in connection with the fact that he and a young girlfriend named Jean Aase from Chicago (who also went by “Jean West”) had visited Dallas on November 20, where they dropped into the Carousel Club to visit Jack Ruby, whom Meyers had known for some time. (Ruby was also invited to meet the couple at the Cabana Motel, a reported “mob” hangout, on the night of the assassination.)[28] An FBI report also revealed that Jean Aase’s phone number was WH 4-4970, although in an interview with her no reference was made to the phone call from David Ferrie to her number.[29] Burt Griffin (now a judge), who questioned Meyers for the Warren Commission in August 1964, also did not ask him if he was familiar with David Ferrie.[30] [Nor whether he was familiar with Jean Aase, whom I later located and eventually interviewed in Minneapolis in 1998, accompanied by her lawyer. She had clearly been relieved to learn from me earlier that Meyers was dead, but downplayed her initial reaction during the 1998 interview, undoubtedly on the advice of her lawyer.]
(Several years later, after Garrison’s investigation, a CBS producer in Los Angeles, Peter Noyes [who told me he was the basis for the “Lou Grant” character], published a book, LEGACY OF DOUBT, in which he revealed for the first time that a man in Los Angeles who was questioned by the Dallas Sheriff’s office after he emerged from the Dal-Tex building near the assassination site had given them a false name, or at least a new one. Until September 10, 1963, his name had been Eugene Hale Brading, with a long criminal record, but was changed to Jim Braden. While in Dallas he visited the offices of H. L. Hunt, supposedly on oil business, and was, like Meyers, registered at the Cabana Motel. Noyes also discovered that in the fall of 1963 Braden was working in New Orleans with an office on the same floor of the Pere Marquette Building as G. Wray Gill, David Ferrie’s employer.)[31] [Beverly Oliver also claims, in a July 1993 letter to THE THIRD DECADE, that she, too, was at the Cabana on Nov. 21, 1963, and danced with Jack Lawrence, another suspect.]
Although Giesbrecht had been discouraged “from pursuing the matter” by the FBI in 1964, he nevertheless, despite some apprehension, felt it was “his duty to give the New Orleans authorities whatever information he can.”[32] At least at this point no one other than the RCMP, the FBI, Garrison and certain members of the WINNIPEG FREE PRESS staff knew his name. [But this was soon to change.]
Throughout 1967, coverage of the Kennedy assassination became more extensive and controversial than ever, both on television and in print. Journalists supporting both sides of the debate expressed their views in virtually every major magazine in the United States, including ATLANTIC, COMMONWEAL, COMMENTARY, ESQUIRE, THE NATION, NATIONAL REVIEW, NEW REPUBLIC, NEW YORK TIMES MAGAZINE, NEW YORKER, NEWSWEEK, PLAYBOY, RAMPARTS, REPORTER, SATURDAY EVENING POST, SATURDAY REVIEW, SENIOR SCHOLASTIC, TIME AND U.S. NEWS AND WORLD REPORT.[33]
In addition, there was an outpouring of books on the subject that year, such as: DEATH OF A PRESIDENT by William Manchester (serialized in LOOK magazine and a controversy in itself),[34] THE TRUTH ABOUT THE ASSASSINATION by Charles Roberts of NEWSWEEK, who was in the Dallas motorcade;[35] ACCESSORIES AFTER THE FACT by the late Sylvia Meagher; FORGIVE MY GRIEF (four volumes) by a Midlothian, Texas newspaper editor, Penn Jones, Jr. [who has since passed away]; THE SCAVENGERS AND CRITICS OF THE WARREN COMMISSION by Robert Lewis; PLOT OR POLITICS: THE GARRISON CASE AND ITS CAST by James and Wardlow; SIX SECONDS IN DALLAS by philosophy professor and LIFE magazine consultant Josiah Thompson (who became a successful private investigator);[36] and LEE: A PORTRAIT OF LEE HARVEY OSWALD BY HIS BROTHER (also serialized in LOOK magazine).[37]
Television also got into the act, beginning in June of that year, when NBC presented a highly critical evaluation of Garrison’s investigation; it was so biased, however, that Garrison won the right to an equal amount of time to present his point of view (later he appeared as a guest of Johnny Carson’s on THE TONIGHT SHOW)[38] [depicted in the “Director’s Cut” of the film “JFK”]. Also, in June 1967 CBS broadcast a four-part examination of the WARREN REPORT and by and large defended the “lone assassin” verdict.[39]
However, it was MACLEAN’S, the Canadian weekly magazine [then monthly] that first identified Giesbrecht as the man who thought Ferrie was one of the men he overheard discussing the assassination.[40] In the November 1967 edition, reporter Jon Ruddy [who sadly died in an accident while in his beloved Mexico a few years ago] presented a chilling description of Giesbrecht’s experience with a number of details not mentioned in the WINNIPEG FREE PRESS reports; unlike the previous accounts, Ruddy not only referred to the informant by name but included a photograph of the 35-year-old Mennonite and father of four sitting at the very table where he had heard the conversation.[41]
In the MACLEAN’S article, Giesbrecht revealed that when he was first interviewed by FBI agent Merle Nelson, he was told that “this looks like the break we’ve been waiting for,” only to be told several months later to “forget the whole thing” because it was “too big”—a tactic used by the FBI with many other witnesses both in Dallas and elsewhere. (However, it could be that the FBI was concerned that informants such as Giesbrecht might possibly put themselves in danger by discussing their allegations with others, particularly the news media.)
According to the MACLEAN’S report, Giesbrecht went back to the WINNIPEG FREE PRESS in February 1967, after seeing the photo of Ferrie, feeling frustrated by the FBI’s seeming lack of interest. He was contacted by one of Garrison’s assistants several times as well as by Garrison himself that summer, confirming that Ferrie had been in Winnipeg on February 13, 1964. [The few documents I have obtained from the Boxley file don’t verify this statement.] As a result of Garrison’s call [which one of his sons has on reel-to-reel tape, apparently], Giesbrecht tentatively agreed to appear at Clay Shaw’s trial [reported in local papers and in other papers across Canada], which didn’t get underway until Jan. 1969, as a result of long legal delays as described in Judge Garrison’s 1988 book ON THE TRAIL OF THE ASSASSINS.
Ruddy’s report also presented a much more detailed account of the conversation. Reference had been made to an “auntie” (possibly slang for an older homosexual) arriving from California for the upcoming meeting in Kansas City; Giesbrecht suspected the two men themselves were homosexuals because of their “high-pitched, precise-sounding voices.” [CD 645 makes reference to a niece of one of the men going to California, and Ferrie’s voice is described as simply Canadian or northern American, while the other man’s sounded educated and slightly European. Giesbrecht might have been influenced by his conversation with Garrison, who placed a lot of importance on the homosexual angle.] The name “Romeniuk” was mentioned several times. According to Ruddy’s report:

“…Ferrie asked about paper or merchandise coming out of Nevada. Latin Accent said it was too risky and that a house or shop had been closed down at a place called Mercury (located northwest of Las Vegas near the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission’s Proving Grounds.) He said that a “good shipment” had reached Caracas from Newport, possibly referring to military arms related to anti-Castro activities. [As pointed out to me by researcher Larry Haapanen, the word “Caracas” was inexplicably included with some other unrelated words in Oswald’s notebook, and was a hotbed of both anti-Castro and pro-Castro political activities in Venezuela leading up to the assassination. Newport could refer to Nova Scotia, where a large weapons manufacturing company existed, or possibly the Mafia-riddled town in Kentucky, or possibly the Naval base in Rhode Island. Mercury might have been in reference to the extreme anti-Communist magazine AMERICAN MERCURY, commonly called MERCURY, which had operated out of Wichita in the early 1960s, but was moved to McLean, Texas, on the Mexican border in 1963.]

      In the course of mentioning the third man in the restaurant, whom he now recalled having “a nose that seemed flat, a fighter’s nose,” Giesbrecht described again, but in much more detail, how he was followed as he attempted to reach the airport RCMP office. After learning where it was located, he changed his mind when he noticed the third man standing near a covered bridge leading to the office. Returning to the mezzanine, he got directions to the nearest phone, and was in the process of relaying his story to an RCMP corporal when the brutish man with tattoos on his fingers appeared again. Giesbrecht quickly hung up and headed for a crowded flight room, waiting awhile before leaving the mezzanine for the parking lot. As he drove away, undoubtedly feeling a tremendous sense of anxiety, Giesbrecht recalled having done “a sort of foolish thing.” Feeling badly about having stood up his client, he described tearing up and burning notes he had taken of the airport conversation, although that night he rewrote them [with his brother’s help] and “hid them in a dresser drawer.” This would explain how Giesbrecht was able to recall so many details even three years later. [Giesbrecht might have destroyed his notes as well, in case he was being followed by the third man.] In the concluding paragraph of the article, Giesbrecht expressed again his frustration in dealing with the FBI, his desire to help Garrison, and the feeling of being like a “child that wants to convey something and nobody’s listening.”
The publication of the MACLEAN’S article and the interest shown by Garrison and his staff were encouraging signs, but if Giesbrecht’s allegations did provide evidence of a conspiracy (which he believed was the case), MACLEAN’S decision to reveal his identity may have been a mistake.[42] Following the contact between Giesbrecht and Garrison’s office and the detailed report by Jon Ruddy, the WINNIPEG FREE PRESS now decided to identify “the informer” themselves, in a brief report on January 5, 1968, which also listed his address in Winnipeg[43] [where his widow still lives to this day]. Giesbrecht had been asked to testify at the Clay Shaw trial, tentatively set to begin on February 15 (although it did not, in fact, get underway until January, 1969, as a result of various legal maneuvers by Shaw’s lawyers). The previous Wednesday, January 3, Garrison had phoned Giesbrecht and was quoted as describing him as an “important and relevant witness.”[44]
Despite the fact that Giesbrecht had already been interviewed several times, he agreed to yet another interview, this time with journalist Val Werier, a writer for the now-defunct WINNIPEG TRIBUNE.[45] At the outset of the article, dated February 1, 1968, Werier [who still writes freelance for the WFP] indicated that Giesbrecht had agreed to testify at the Shaw trial and would be flown to New Orleans “soon to appear as a key witness.”[46] The remainder of the lengthy article summarized interviews with both Giesbrecht and his former boss, Peter Thiessen,[47] both of whom were in the life insurance business. In describing the conversation between Giesbrecht and Thiessen in the Winnipeg hospital where Giesbrecht saw the photo of David Ferrie [which was not included in a WFP article that day], Thiessen was quoted as stating that “it is obvious to me now that he had recognized the man in the paper” and recalled that Giesbrecht “got quite a shock when he saw the picture…He wasn’t his normal healthy colour.” Giesbrecht had apparently told Thiessen “the entire story” a year earlier, at which time “he wondered whether the remarks that Mr. Giesbrecht overheard were significant. Now he felt that the picture made them so.”
Giesbrecht described to Werier the airport incident of February 13, 1964, once again, although several details not previously mentioned were included. For instance, in describing Ferrie, he suggested that the skin on one side of his face “appeared shiny and tight,” as if it had been burned. The NEW YORK TIMES, in their February 23, 1967, report on Ferrie’s mysterious and untimely death, pointed out that Ferrie had worn “false eyebrows and a wig to cover burns he had once suffered.”[48] According to the same report, a “source” within Garrison’s office also stated that Garrison theorized that “Kennedy’s assassination grew out of a plot by anti-Communist forces to kill President Fidel Castro of Cuba. According to this theory, the conspirators planned to send Lee Harvey Oswald to Cuba to kill Premier Castro, and later decided to attack President Kennedy when Oswald was denied entry into Cuba.” Had the Warren Commission been aware of the CIA-Mafia plots to kill Castro dating back to 1960, Garrison’s speculation might have been much more convincing.
The article by Werier also referred to the film footage of Kennedy landing that supposedly showed a man named Isaacs in the background, but, unlike previous reports, the writer described a landing in “Texas”, which means it could have been news film showing the President disembarking at one of several stops on his political tour, possibly Houston or Ft. Worth.[49] In addition, Werier described Ferrie pointing to an aircraft from the Horizon Room, referring to it as “like the one I told you I flew during the war”; previous articles didn’t mention anything about “the war.” He concluded his article by referring to several conversations between Giesbrecht and “Garrison, or his aides,” and the fact that Garrison had “uncovered evidence that Ferrie was in Winnipeg on Feb. 13, 1964.” Looking ahead to the trial, Werier stated that “it will be interesting to know whether the forthcoming trial of Mr. Shaw will reveal why Mr. Ferrie did come to Winnipeg and the identify of the man who was with him, when Mr. Giesbrecht overheard the conversation four years ago.” [There was no follow-up report in either Winnipeg paper to explain why Giesbrecht did not testify, and when I spoke to Werier he only vaguely recalled his article.]
In January, 1968, after months of research and direct contact with Garrison’s staff, former FBI agent-turned-journalist William Turner produced an in-depth report for RAMPARTS magazine entitled “The Garrison Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy.”[50] The left-wing magazine had already covered the assassination in a number of penetrating articles such as “In the Shadow of Dallas”[51] (Nov. 1966), which described a growing number of suspicious deaths of either witnesses, relatives or reporters linked somehow to the events in Dallas; a conspiracy scenario entitled “The Case For Three Assassins,” by David Welsh and David Lifton (who wrote BEST EVIDENCE years later in 1981), which appeared in the January 1967 edition;[52] and two previous reports by Turner on the Garrison investigation in April 1967 (“The Plot Thickens”)[53] and June, 1967 (“The Inquest”).[54]
In the course of Turner’s 24-page examination of Garrison’s probe, the American public and possibly unknown co-conspirators first became aware of Giesbrecht’s allegations in a two-paragraph summary of his story.[55] In addition, Turner revealed his name and the fact that he was from Winnipeg. He mentioned that Giesbrecht had recently been shown an assortment of photographs, from which he identified Ferrie as the man with the bushy eyebrows. This identification presumably took place in New Orleans, although this was not actually stated. [It would appear that this did not happen, as Giesbrecht never did go to New Orleans and meet with Garrison. He only spoke to him over the phone from his home.]
In reference to a man named Isaacs, who seemed to be linked somehow to Oswald and allegedly appeared in film footage near the President when he arrived in Texas, Turner indicated that a classified document did, in fact, exist, entitled “Harold Isaacs.” An unnamed Garrison investigator[56] had located a man somewhere in Texas with that name, who admitted to owning a 1958 Ford which had been destroyed in a wrecking yard. [The investigator was William Wood, aka William Boxley, but the man named Harold Isaacs was not the subject of the still-classified document—CD 1080—and the 1958 vehicle discussed at the Winnipeg Airport was a Dodge.] Finally, Turner, in reference to the Kansas City meeting mentioned in the Winnipeg conversation [which was to take place at the Townhouse Motor Hotel, located at Broadway and Kellogg Sts. in Wichita, Kansas, as the FBI had discovered, as reflected in a report I obtained in 1999], pointed out that this happened to be the headquarters of the Minutemen, a right-wing, paramilitary organization that Garrison suspected was involved in the assassination. [Wichita had been the head office of AMERICAN MERCURY magazine in the early 1960s, however, and was the home of oilman Fred Koch, who had cofounded the John Birch Society in the 1950s, as pointed out in a June, 1994 VANITY FAIR article on the family.]
(Turner wrote a lengthy article on the Minutemen and its founder, Robert DePugh, in the January 1967 edition of RAMPARTS, with much of his information provided by a defector named Jerry Milton Brooks. He had served “as DePugh’s intelligence and security officer until he became squeamish over the Minutemen’s intent to overthrow the government”.[57] Intriguingly, Brooks made reference to Guy Banister, who had headed an anti-Castro organization in New Orleans with links to the CIA, until his death in 1964. Banister was closely associated with both David Ferrie and Lee Oswald, according to Garrison’s investigation, which became public knowledge a month after Turner’s article was published.)
Five months after his report on Garrison, Turner once again made reference to Richard Giesbrecht’s allegations, shortly after Martin Luther King’s death. In his article for RAMPARTS, “Some Disturbing Parallels,” Turner wrote:

   One parallel that must not be allowed to develop further in the King case is the pattern of cover-up that characterized the Kennedy assassination. For instance, Richard Giesbrecht, a reputable Winnipeg, Canada businessman…overheard two men…talking about inside details of the assassination. A few weeks later, he contends, the FBI called him back and told him, “Forget what you heard. It’s too big.” One of the men, says Giesbrecht, was the late David Ferrie, an ex-CIA pilot and central figure in the Garrison probe. Significantly, Giesbrecht is not to be found in the National Archives [which was not the case, but all reports were still classified] nor is his name mentioned in the WARREN REPORT or its volumes. He is one of a number of key witnesses who, as far as the official version is concerned, never existed. [Somewhat overstated, but the six-page report, CD 645, did not provide his name, as he was considered an informer.][58]

      Despite Turner’s comments about Giesbrecht, no reference was made to him by either Garrison or any journalists covering the New Orleans investigation, except for a summary of the February 13, 1964, incident, along with the dialogue of a telephone conversation with Giesbrecht that was included in THE KENNEDY CONSPIRACY, published in early 1969 and written by Paris Flammonde.[59] Unfortunately, since the book’s approach to the assassination was closely linked to Garrison’s investigation, which resulted in acquittal for Clay Shaw in March 1969,[60] the book did not sell many copies and was panned by reviewers, including Sylvia Meagher, author of ACCESSORIES AFTER THE FACT.[61] Unlike Turner, whose information was derived from Garrison himself,[62] Flammonde makes reference to both the WINNIPEG FREE PRESS and MACLEAN’S articles in summarizing what he described as a “fascinating incident.”[63] [I later learned from an FBI report that THE NATIONAL ENQUIRER had published a lengthy report in their Jan. 28, 1968 issue, based on interviews with Giesbrecht, Van Bennekom, and Louis Ivon of Garrison’s office, amongst others, which I was able to obtain from their librarian.]
Flammonde also indicated from his conversations with Garrison that “he accepts Ferrie, who was easily recognizable because of his red wig and false eyebrows, as one of the Winnipeg men.”[64] In addition, Flammonde suggested that the other man at the table “may have been Maj. L. M. Bloomfield, a former OSS officer, now living in Montreal” [although no description of Bloomfield was provided to compare to the description of the second man given to the FBI by Giesbrecht]. He identified Bloomfield, who is referred to in Garrison’s 1988 book (but not his 1970 book) as being a member of the board of directors of the CIA-sponsored Centro Mondiale Commerciale in Rome—an organization which also had Clay Shaw on its board (which was investigated by the Montreal paper LE DEVOIR with a March 16, 1967, report cited by Garrison in his 1988 book, ON THE TRAIL OF THE ASSASSINS.)[65]
Presumably obtaining Giesbrecht’s phone number from Garrison’s office (although there were only three “R. Giesbrecht” listings in the 1967 Winnipeg phone book, two of which were also listed back in 1964),[66] Flammonde made contact with Giesbrecht in the fall of 1967.[67] In reply to a question about Giesbrecht’s identification of Ferrie, he indicated he was “a hundred percent” certain that one of the two men he overheard was David Ferrie.[68] He was also asked if he had been “recently contacted by the FBI or any other United States government intelligence agency,”[69] to which he replied “no comment.” Giesbrecht felt that the FBI “had done a good job, maybe…”, but seemed frustrated that their investigation (if any) was not out in the open. [FBI documents reveal that DeLoach and his assistants in Washington, D.C., concluded that Giesbrecht’s allegations were “hoax-like,” although when I spoke to DeLoach by phone a few years ago he had no recollection of the Winnipeg event.] When asked about the other man, Giesbrecht was willing to describe his appearance, but when asked if he had any idea who he might be, he again replied “no comment” (possibly fearing reprisal).[70]
Although the trial of Clay Shaw, which took place in early 1969, resulted in an acquittal for the New Orleans businessman, it is interesting to note that the jury also concluded that the evidence presented had supported the growing belief that a conspiracy was involved.[71] Despite indications he would appear, there is no sign that Richard Giesbrecht did, in fact, testify, possibly because of threats to his life. [In a Dec. 13, 1968 CBC-TV interview in Winnipeg, Giesbrecht was still prepared to testify, but, according to one of his sons and author Flammonde, he changed his mind after a threat was made to his family’s safety.] I learned from a close relative in Winnipeg that Giesbrecht later agreed to testify in Washington D.C. at the HSCA hearings with RCMP protection but (again) changed his mind at the last minute.[72]
In June 1970 William Turner of RAMPARTS, who had referred to Giesbrecht in two 1968 articles, reported once again on developments within the Minutemen organization, which he had suspected was “the group” planning to meet in Kansas City, as described by Giesbrecht.[73] [Even though the FBI did determine that the Townhouse Motor Hotel was actually in Wichita, and indicated in a report that no sales meeting had been scheduled there for March 18, 1964, they didn’t seem to consider the likelihood that it would have been cancelled.] Turner had been subpoenaed by lawyers representing Robert DePugh, founder of the Minutemen, who had been charged with jumping bail on an illegal weapons charge. Before being caught in New Mexico, DePugh, disguised as a hippie, had been on the run for 18 months (which became the basis of his 1973 publication entitled CAN YOU SURVIVE: GUIDELINES FOR RESISTANCE TO TYRANNY FOR YOU AND YOUR FAMILY), convinced that “an opposing element of the radical right had marked him for death.” DePugh had suggested to Turner in October 1967 that a splinter group of former Minutemen were attempting to promote fascism in the United States “in the guise of anti-Communism.” In regard to the Kennedy assassination, Turner (at the urging of Garrison) “posed the possibility that renegade Minutemen had been involved…DePugh readily agreed, saying that he had some evidence that might explain unanswered questions abut events in Dealey Plaza in Dallas.” A few months after making this comment, DePugh had disappeared, in fear for his life, suspecting that the FBI itself “was in cahoots with this very element.” Although the possibility of collusion between the FBI and a fascist organization such as the American Nazi Party sounds hard to believe, DePugh’s comment reminded me of an earlier discovery while looking through old copies of the extreme anti-Communist magazine AMERICAN MERCURY. Amongst the regular contributors of this Bible of hate-mongers were such notable individuals as General Walker of Dallas,[74] whom Oswald allegedly fired on in the spring of 1963; Professor Revilo Oliver from Illinois,[75] George Lincoln Rockwell, founder of the ANP,[76] and none other than J. Edgar Hoover himself[77]—four “experts” on the spread of Communism within the U.S.A.
DePugh also revealed in his 1970 interview with Turner that he had spoken directly to Garrison in October 1967 (not long after Garrison’s contact with Giesbrecht) and verified that three individuals being investigated by Garrison were at one time members of the Minutemen (possibly including Ferrie and Banister). Turner learned from DePugh that “some of his former members are literally Nazis, having gone over to the ANP,”[78] which included John Pratler,[79] convicted of assassinating George Lincoln Rockwell in August 1967, firing at him from a rooftop as the ANP leader prepared to drive away from a laundromat.[80] According to DePugh, the ANP was chiefly financed by a prominent Texas millionaire (a member of the Hunt family perhaps?), and had become associated with a “sympathetic clique” based in California calling itself “the Real Minutemen,” suggesting that DePugh’s organization was becoming soft from the point of view of certain extremists.
It would appear that DePugh had good reason to fear for his life, according to a “reliable reporter” referred to in Turner’s 1970 article. Allegedly, “a sometime employee of Guy Banister’s New Orleans detective agency” had tape-recorded evidence between himself and a “right-winger in Denver” of a $7500 offer to have DePugh killed, along with DePugh’s associate Walter Peyson, both of whom were fugitives at the time.
Robert DePugh’s activities during the early sixties are also discussed at length in the 1987 book ARMED AND DANGEROUS, by James Coates.[81] According to Coates, who had covered the HSCA hearings in 1978, DePugh had posters printed only a few months after Kennedy’s assassination, warning twenty members of Congress who had voted in favour of a bill that DePugh feared would lead to the abolition of the House Committee on Un-American Activities. It is interesting to note that the content of the posters had originally been printed on the front page of the Minutemen’s “hate sheet” ON TARGET (whose logo was a picture of the cross hairs of a telescopic sight) shortly before the assassination and read as follows:

   See the old man on the corner where you buy your paper? He may have a silencer-equipped pistol under his coat. That extra fountain pen in the pocket of the insurance salesman that calls on you might be a cyanide-gas gun. What about your milk-man? Arsenic works slow but sure. Your auto mechanic may stay up nights studying booby traps. These patriots are not going to let you take their freedom away from them. They have learned the silent knife, the strangler’s cord, the target rifle that hits sparrows at 200 yards. Only their leaders restrain them.
Traitors beware! Even now the cross hairs are on the back of your necks…[82]

      Kennedy himself was certainly considered a traitor by both the “anti-Castro” movement and neo-Nazis, such as the Minutemen and the John Birch Society. In fact, a “Wanted For Treason” poster showing his “mug shot” and a long list of “crimes” was circulated in Dallas prior to Kennedy’s arrival.[83] A full-page advertisement in the DALLAS MORNING NEWS on November 22 (with its ominous-looking thick black border) attacking his policies also reflected the animosity that existed. Coupled with DePugh’s jailhouse comments to Turner, it could be that one of those “target rifles” was aimed at JFK’s neck by renegade “patriots” unwilling to be restrained any longer.
The FBI actually received a warning that “a militant revolutionary group may attempt to assinated (sic) President Kennedy on his proposed trip to Dallas…”[84] The memo was dated November 17, 1963, and sent from Washington D.C. to all Special Agents In Charge. This included the New Orleans office where security guard William Walter took note of the warning as it came over the telex at 1:45 a.m. He contacted five local SACs and wrote their names at the bottom of the bulletin.[85] While having his hair cut on November 22, Walter learned to his chagrin that Kennedy had been assassinated and ran back to the office where he reread the warning. Later that day he typed a copy, which he took home, which he provided to the 1975 Senate Intelligence Committee. (It was subsequently printed in the Feb. 1978 special edition of the L.A. FREE PRESS and is also referred to by Garrison in his book ON THE TRAIL…). It should be noted that when Walter decided to look at the original again after the FBI’s “lone assassin” conclusions became public knowledge (through intentional leaks to the press) in Dec. 1963, it had disappeared and has not surfaced since.[86]
In his book ARMED AND DANGEROUS, Coates also points out in a brief discussion of the Garrison investigation that the New Orleans D.A. (now an appellate court judge in New Orleans) [he died in the fall of 1992] claimed to uncover “…evidence that the triggerman, Lee Harvey Oswald, was a member of the heavily armed extremists known as Minutemen”.[87] Although there is no convincing evidence to prove this assertion, a large number of Minutemen were charged with a variety of crimes, including evidence that “…many group members had been assigned assassination targets, including President Johnson and UN Ambassador Arthur Goldberg”.[88] Again the possibility that Kennedy was also on that list comes immediately to mind.
As paranoid as ever, DePugh wrote urgently to his readers in the April 1, 1964, edition of ON TARGET to purchase a weapon immediately, recommending a number of different high-powered weapons for males, females and even children, suggesting their lives might “depend on it.”[89] Just as DePugh had indicated losing members to the ANP under George Rockwell, the head of the ANP mentioned to author Harry Jones of Kansas City (THE MINUTEMEN) in a March 1967 interview, that “…Minutemen had recruited dozens of his members,”[90] although there was the strong possibility of infiltration and counterinfiltration taking place between the two organizations.
According to Turner, Rockwell also had connections to Guy Banister, the former FBI agent from Chicago, who ran the Anti-Communism League of the Caribbean in New Orleans until his death in 1964. Banister worked “closely with American Nazi Party members…,”[91] which included association with Maurice Gatlin, who was both a partner in Banister’s “league” and Rockwell’s attorney in that area of the country.[92]
Banister was also closely associated with the anti-Castro movement and, according to a number of witnesses, including his secretary at 544 Camp/531 Lafayette (a corner office with entrances on both streets), was also in frequent contact with Lee Harvey Oswald.[93] In fact, the address “544 Camp” was stamped on some of the leaflets Oswald began handing out in August, 1963 [which it turns out had been mailed from CIA headquarters, as pointed out by Jim DiEugenio], although the material encouraged readers to support Castro through the Fair Play For Cuba Committee—a chapter established by Oswald himself. Numerous books have suggested that these activities were nothing more than a ploy designed to provide a fictitious “pro-Castro” image for Oswald,[94] but for reasons that even Oswald was not aware of prior to his arrest in Dallas. By then he knew that he had undoubtedly been set up.
By the fall of 1967, Banister, Ferrie, Rockwell and others were all dead; if DePugh was threatened with death, it could be that a small group of fanatics with links to both the Minutemen and the ANP (or to “the real Minutemen”), encouraged from a safe distance by organized crime and anti-Castro elements, made a decision to kill Kennedy, Connally and possibly even Johnson as they came down Elm Street together on Nov. 22, 1963, against both the wishes and knowledge of Rockwell and DePugh. If Oswald was involved, it would not be too difficult to leave evidence incriminating to Oswald, Castro and Communism in general.[95]
There certainly was ample evidence that other gunmen were involved in the assassination, much of which was either downplayed or ignored by both the FBI and the Warren Commission, such as: smoke rising from the grassy knoll; the sound of gunshots from that area [which I later discussed in my article “Mary Woodward: The First Dissenting Witness,” published in TFD]; suspicious-looking men in cars using two-way radios behind the knoll; footprints behind the wooden fence above the knoll; the smell of smoke that several members of the motorcade reported detecting; a phony Secret Service agent on the grassy knoll; the sighting of two men on the sixth floor of the depository building [one of whom was wearing horn-rimmed glasses, possibly Richard Cain from Chicago]; men fleeing from the TSBD in a Rambler station wagon, including “Oswald”; and a man seen running down the bank behind the grassy knoll, picked up by a car that sped away. [I later wrote about the source of this report, Tom Tilson, and concluded that it was not a credible story.][96]
The conversation that Richard Giesbrecht had overheard certainly suggested that a right-wing conspiracy was responsible for the assassination, and, if David Ferrie was indeed part of that conversation, then undoubtedly members of organized crime and the anti-Castro movement in both New Orleans and Dallas were at least aware of the impending “hit”.[97] The [Winnipeg] conversation had also made reference to a man named “Isaacs,” although no first name was apparently mentioned, as discussed earlier. William Turner referred to Isaacs in the January 1968 RAMPARTS article and [appeared] to have been led to believe by a Garrison investigator that the man’s first name was possibly “Harold”, in that the FBI had interviewed a man by that name on May 22, 1964 [no interview, just background check].[98] Garrison’s unnamed investigator, most likely William Boxley a.k.a. William Wood,[99] had located a “Harold R. Isaacs” somewhere in Texas.[100] (There is a 1989 listing under that name in Livingston, Texas, not far from Houston). The man readily admitted to previously owning a 1958 Ford which had been destroyed. [The FBI’s report on Giesbrecht indicated it was a 1958 Dodge that was being discussed.] However, Garrison and Turner could have been intentionally misled by the investigator if it was Boxley, in that Garrison eventually discovered that Boxley was working “undercover” for the CIA (which is described in Garrison’s 1988 book).[101]
As pointed out by Turner, a classified document about a man named “Harold R. Isaacs” did exist,[102] but it certainly did not deal with a resident of Texas. In fact, had Turner visited a major Canadian bookstore or library in 1968, he might have come across a book on the assassination written in Europe entitled FAREWELL AMERICA, not published in the United States.[103] In the appendix of the book, a list of all the classified documents withheld from public viewing was provided, which included CD 1080 : “Information on Harold R. Isaacs”, dated 5-22-64, FBI Boston.[104] [I later received an article written by William Turner from REBEL magazine in 1984 in which he described his involvement in distributing copies of FAREWELL AMERICA to researchers and libraries in the U.S., after a large shipment mysteriously arrived at his home in California from Montreal. It also turned out that Tom Bethell had provided the list of classified CDs to Mary Ferrell, which he had obtained from the National Archives, as described in his book ELECTRIC WINDMILL. In addition, Garrison received a copy of the original manuscript for FAREWELL AMERICA from the French editor, as described in ON THE TRAIL…]
The timing of the FBI’s interview with Professor Isaacs of M.I.T. [no interview took place], a journalist, writer and SE Asia research specialist at the Center For International Studies,[105] is intriguing. It [the background check] took place only three weeks after the WINNIPEG FREE PRESS ran its account of the airport incident, in which the name “Isaacs” was mentioned. The FBI was most likely also aware of the fact that Professor Isaacs was working for a CIA-funded branch of M.I.T., which became public knowledge that year in the revealing book THE INVISIBLE GOVERNMENT.[106] Earlier in his career, Isaacs had been suspected of being “pro-Communist,”[107] and also had appeared to have been associated with Marilyn Dorothea Murret,[108] a teacher, and world traveler, who had spent some time in Japan; she also happened to be a first cousin of Lee Harvey Oswald, and saw him frequently in New Orleans in 1963.[109] [The FBI found no evidence that Prof. Isaacs and Marilyn Murret had ever met.]
I was able to contact Mrs. Isaacs, whose husband died two years ago [1988] after a distinguished literary and academic career. It was surprising to learn from her that, despite being actively involved in her husband’s career, she was not aware that he had been interviewed or at least investigated by the FBI, related somehow to the assassination. In fact, she pointed out to me that they spent the 1963–64 school year in Tokyo, living at International House, where Professor Isaacs was lecturing. From there they went to Hawaii, returning to Boston on June 13, 1964 (on their grandson’s birthday), several weeks after the FBI report date listed, suggesting that an FBI report on Professor Isaacs’s background might have been written without his knowledge.[110] [This was the case, based on unfounded allegation by a right-wing reporter named Paul Allen, which the FBI subsequently dismissed.]
In 1975 the first page of CD 1080, which accidentally became available at the National Archives after being misfiled, was included in the book COUP D’ÉTAT IN AMERICA.[111] Oddly enough, although the report is a biographical description of Isaacs, based on “FBI interviews with him in the early fifties,” along with information provided by the secretary to the president of M.I.T., it is entitled “Marilyn Dorothea Murret,” who is not even mentioned. However, in a previous FBI report, CD 942, it was alleged that “Murret was linked in some manner with the…apparatus of Professor Harold Isaacs."[112] [As I stated earlier, the FBI investigation was based on the accusations of right-wing reporter Paul Allen, who had written a column about three women whom he claimed were “defectors,” one being Marilyn Murret, which led to an interview with an FBI agent in Boston in which he tried to link Murret to Isaacs, and accused Prof. Isaacs of masterminding a plot to assassinate President Lyndon Johnson.]
The authors of COUP D’ÉTAT IN AMERICA [one of whom had made a name for himself by going through Bob Dylan’s garbage] stated that “Isaacs was a disillusioned leftist intellectual who had become a professional anti-Communist on a very high ‘think tank’ level[113] at the C.I.A.-financed M.I.T. research center, and suggested that Murret was using her position as a teacher and world traveler “as a cover for spying activities she was performing for Harold R. Isaacs.”[114] [I later wrote to and spoke with Marilyn Murret at her home in New Orleans, but she would not discuss anything related to the assassination.] Certainly the Warren Commission appeared to be interested in both Isaacs and Murret, in that a memo was sent to the FBI in Boston dated May 7, 1964, from Washington, D.C. requesting a background check on Harold Isaacs,[115] most likely written by either Howard Willens, who acted as liaison between the Commission and the Department of Justice, or by J. Lee Rankin, chief counsel.
It is difficult to know if the request from the W.C.’s staff related to Isaacs (and Murret) had any connection with the Richard Giesbrecht allegations. However, contrary to William Turner’s assertion in the June, 1968, RAMPARTS article that Giesbrecht officially “never existed,”[116] there were, in fact, two commission documents, CD 645 and CD 866, both of which dealt with the Winnipeg incident.[117] [I later received over a dozen FBI reports related to Giesbrecht, whose name originally was misspelled “Giesbright” on several FBI documents, which presumably had been included in CD 866. Most are listed in summary form at NARA’s website, and have been declassified.] However, it is important to note that it was not until March 1967 that Giesbrecht was able to identify one of the men [overheard] as David Ferrie. By then neither the FBI nor the CIA had any desire to reexamine the case for a multitude of reasons [and therefore, as reflected in several FBI memos, continued to discount Giesbrecht’s allegations, and considered him to be a publicity seeker with an overactive imagination].[118]
In 1987 I wrote to Judge Garrison [now deceased] and included a copy of the MACLEAN’S article,[119] after having spoken to a relative of Giesbrecht’s in Winnipeg[120] [I later discovered that I was talking to Richard Giesbrecht after all, as his address and phone number were published in the WINNIPEG FREE PRESS after the MACLEAN’S report], as well as Michael Karmazin in New Orleans [121] and Merle Nelson in Sioux Falls, SD.[122] Even though Garrison is obviously still determined to prove that a conspiracy involving right-wingers caused Kennedy’s death, I never received a reply from him. [I later sent the issue of TTD which included this article, and his secretary assured me that Judge Garrison had read it; it was mailed back to me from the courthouse.] No reference is made to Giesbrecht in his second book, ON THE TRAIL…, although David Ferrie is discussed at length.[123]
In March 1989 I contacted Karmazin again after reading Garrison’s book, and he suggested sending any questions I might have about the Giesbrecht incident to him, to be forwarded to Garrison personally, whom he still knew well. Because he is a busy man, it was suggested that I leave space below each question for Garrison to write his response. Again I did not receive a reply, so I mailed the questions to Garrison’s secretary,[124] to whom I had spoken. I learned from her and Karmazin that Garrison has become distrustful of other “assassination buffs”, which had prompted Karmazin’s suggestion in the first place. In June 1989 I called Karmazin again and learned that he hadn’t been able to deliver my questions, in that Garrison was out of town promoting his book. I am still waiting for a reply.[125] [I never did receive any answers to my questions, nor was I able to reach Karmazin again.]
In addition to Garrison’s book, the 25th anniversary of the assassination saw the publication of several other books on the subject, including CONTRACT ON AMERICA, by David Scheim [which he had published earlier at his own expense], MAFIA KINGFISH, by John Davis [whom I later met at the 1991 SUNY-Fredonia College JFK conference, where he was the keynote speaker], and FINAL DISCLOSURE, by David Belin (who was a staff lawyer for the Warren Commission). I wrote to all three authors in regard to Giesbrecht, who is not mentioned in any of these books. I learned from David Scheim that he had never heard of the incident, although he expressed some interest. On the other hand, John Davis, who had earlier written about the Kennedy family [he is a first cousin of the late Jackie Kennedy Onassis] and the assassination in 1984, stated in his reply: “…I am well acquainted with the Giesbrecht allegation. I did not include it in my new book because I did not have the time to check it out.”[126] Ironically, he also referred to a Winnipeg researcher with whom he had corresponded for some time. Despite having written several articles on “dead suspects,” including Ferrie, for this journal (TTD), Davis’s colleague, Scott Van Wynsberghe, only vaguely knew about Giesbrecht’s allegation from the brief reference in Turner’s January 1968 RAMPARTS article [which was quite misleading, as noted earlier]. In the case of Belin, who previously wrote NOVEMBER 22, 1963: YOU BE THE JURY in 1973, his response to my long letter on a number of topics was quite blunt: “I have read your May 15 letter. You are just plain wrong in your conclusions…I regret that you do not recognize the truth about the assassination.”[127] Mr. Belin did not comment on the Giesbrecht incident, which I had brought to his attention in my letter. [I also sent my article to Burt Griffin and Robert Blakey, but got no comment from either. Blakey did mail it back, but with no letter included, which I thought was very inconsiderate.]
It could be, of course, that the Giesbrecht allegations were not considered worth investigating any further by either the FBI or the Warren Commission (assuming they knew about it). [FBI documents clearly indicate that Giesbrecht was not taken seriously at Headquarters, and although the W. C. did receive the original report and follow-up memos, airtels, etc., there is no reference to the incident in the Warren Commission’s 26 volumes. Every document was classified “secret” and sent to the National Archives.] Nor was there necessarily any relationship with Professor Harold Isaacs in Boston. [This seemed to be a totally separate FBI investigation, with no apparent connection to the Winnipeg incident, although the FBI might have suspected “Isaacs” was the M.I.T. professor.]
Curiously enough, the FBI office [in Boston] not only wrote a classified report on Isaacs (with references to Marilyn Murret), but also prepared a report, CD 480, likewise classified, entitled “Marguerite Oswald in Boston,”[128] dated March 4, 1964, shortly after her Warren Commission testimony [which probably dealt with Mark Lane and her]. In addition, they wrote another report that was withheld from public viewing, CD 988, entitled “Info Concerning General Edwin Walker”,[129] who was a member of the right-wing organization called the John Birch Society, and who had been fired by President Kennedy in 1962 for promoting the Society’s beliefs while stationed in West Germany.[130] Walker subsequently returned to his hometown, Dallas, where he ran unsuccessfully for governor in 1962,[131] coming dead last in the Democratic primaries won by John Connally. In April 1963, he was allegedly fired at by Lee Harvey Oswald, according to Marina Oswald,[132] even though two men in a car were seen fleeing from the area.[133]
In connection with the FBI’s Boston and Walker investigations, it should be noted that Belmont, Mass., west of Boston, was the headquarters of the John Birch Society, named after an army intelligence officer killed by Chinese Communists shortly after WW II ended.[134] It was founded in 1958 by Robert Welch, and its governing body included a former USAF Lieutenant-General, a former chief justice of the Arizona Supreme Court, a former aide to General MacArthur, a former dean of Notre Dame Law School, a former ambassador to Argentina, and a former Internal Revenue chief, along with several prominent businessmen.[135]
When I spoke to Richard Giesbrecht, Sr., in the fall of 1987,[136] I was told that a daughter of the “airport informer” had drowned while the family was vacationing in the Detroit area, and that foul play had been suspected.[137] While reading the book HOFFA’S MAN by Richard Hammer and Joe Franco (written in 1987), I learned that Jimmy Hoffa had a summer home on Lake Orion, near Detroit, where he and his cronies quite often met. I couldn’t help wonder [at the time] if the drowning happened to take place at that particular lake.[138] Unfortunately, I was unable to check out this possibility with Mr. Giesbrecht, who I had learned was not a relative of the “airport informer” after all, but the man himself.[139] [I later discovered through a conversation with a cousin, Mel Giesbrecht, who lives in the same community as me, that the area “Dicky” was referring to was Detroit Lakes, Minnesota, a popular summer vacation spot east of Grand Forks, ND. I was able to obtain a report on the daughter’s death, which occurred during the day in the motel swimming pool, and appeared to be an unfortunate accident.]
I also received a reply[140] from former FBI agent James Hosty, who had been responsible for keeping close contact with the Oswalds after they arrived in Dallas from the Soviet Union [taking over the case after the Oswalds moved from Ft. Worth; although he met Marina Oswald and Ruth Paine, he never actually spoke to Lee Oswald], in case they were operating under the direction of the KGB. Hosty indicated to me that he was aware of the Giesbrecht allegations and had, in fact, read both the FBI reports and the RCMP’s own statement, which he claimed “were furnished to the Warren Commission.” [I wrote to the RCMP about a possible report, and was required to apply through Canada’s Access to Information Act, but was told there was no such report in their files.] He suggested that the MACLEAN’S article, which I had enclosed with my letter, “is a distortion.” He was quite adamant that the man with the “Southern” or “Latin” accent was actually East European and had a last name which was Russian (Ukrainian actually) [consistent with CD 645, which referred to the accent as slightly European], and that the other man “did not, in any way, resemble Ferrie, who was distinctive to say the least.” [Clearly, Mr. Giesbrecht was certain it was Ferrie, and his 1964 description was quite consistent with Ferrie’s features and accent.] Hosty believes that “Isaacs” was “undoubtedly V.V. Kostikov, the KGB General that Oswald met with in Mexico City right after [prior to] the assassination.” Oswald had allegedly written a letter to the Soviet Embassy in Washington D.C. on November 9, 1963 (intercepted by the FBI),[141] in which he made reference to “comrade Kostin.”[142] Consistent with Garrison’s theory mentioned at the time of Ferrie’s death, Oswald’s letter pointed out difficulties he had encountered dealing with the Cuban Embassy, where he expected to obtain a visa enabling him to travel to Cuba.[143] From Garrison’s point of view, however, Oswald’s “pro-Castro” position was nothing more than an act, possibly designed in part to allow him to visit Cuba in order to kill Castro. [Although it turned out that the CIA and the Mafia had teamed up in 1960 in an attempt to assassinate Castro, not revealed until the mid-1970s, there is no evidence that Oswald was involved in this murky operation.] Hosty, on the other hand, clearly believes that Oswald was an agent of the KGB. In Hosty’s opinion, “the public has been subjected to a double disinformation campaign. First, by the U.S. government that was afraid of starting World War II and then the Soviet Union and Castro ‘apologists’ who felt they were saving détente and the peace process.”[144] [Hosty wrote his own book a few years later, but did not mention the Winnipeg Airport Incident.]
Until March 30, 1989, Richard Giesbrecht continued to live at the same address where he was living in 1964 [when he died from cancer of the brain], having retired at the young age of 49 after an “extremely successful career as an insurance underwriter, gaining notoriety as a member of the ‘Million Dollar Round Table,’ while with National Agencies, Ltd. Dick retired…from Mony Life in 1980 to spend time at home. His bike riding and walks became a passion [according to a letter and obituary sent to me by Mr. Giesbrecht’s former boss, the same man whom he had visited in hospital when he saw the photo of David Ferrie on the front page of the WINNIPEG TRIBUNE]. Mr. Giesbrecht died at the age of 57, leaving behind his wife of 30 years, a daughter and two sons, as well as three grandchildren."[145] He was undoubtedly aware of the fact that he probably crossed paths with members of an organization, most likely paramilitary with links to organized crime, that had managed, so far, to get away with the murder of President John. F. Kennedy. As former FBI agent Merle Nelson stated in a 1987 telephone conversation with me after receiving the MACLEAN’S article, “…it was a long time ago.” For some, easy to forget; for others, impossible.


[1] I spoke to “Richard E. Giesbrecht, Sr.” at 757 Adamdell Cr. in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada on three occasions in September and October 1987; the man stated to me he was a close relative of the subject of this report. He indicated that the man still feared for his life and wished he had never overheard the conversation discussed in my report.

[2] Identified by name in a front-page report entitled “PROBE KENNEDY DEATH HERE—FBI Man Visits Winnipeg to Check Assassination Clue,” dated May 2, 1964, WINNIPEG FREE PRESS. I spoke to him several times by phone.

[3] Commission Document 645, which I applied for through the FOIA a year ago [1990], along with a second report, CD 866. I was given file #321,427 and I was assured on May 23, 1990 that my request would be processed as soon as possible. [Numerous FBI documents were finally received in late 1991 and again in 1993, but without any “Commission Document” identification.]

[4] Recent allegations [in 1991] by Ricky White, son of now-deceased Roscoe White, alleging that his father was one of three assassins as a member of the Dallas police, tend to reinforce this theory.

[5] As pointed out by David Scheim, CONTRACT ON AMERICA (New York: Shapolsky, 1988). Note: in the reference book BOOKS IN PRINT (New: R.R. Bowker, 1989–90), Scheim’s books is listed under the heading “KENNEDY, JOHN FITZGERALD, PRES. U.S. 1917–1963—ASSASSINATION—FICTION.”

[6] FAREWELL AMERICA (Vaduz, Liechtenstein: Frontiers Publ. Co.) printed simultaneously in Canada and Belgium. See William Turner’s article, “Farewell America; How French Intelligence wrote a book about the Kennedy assassination,” in THE REBEL (Feb. 13, 1984), pp. 26–29.

[7] Edward Oxford, “Lights and Shadows—Destiny in Dallas (Part II)”, AMERICAN HISTORY ILLUSTRATED, January, 1989, p. 18.

[8] Loudon Wainwright, “Assassination: The Trail to a Verdict,” LIFE, October 16, 1964, p. 35.

[9] Loudon Wainwright, “The Warren Report is Not Enough”, LIFE, Oct. 7, 1966; Richard Billings (ed.), “A Matter of Reasonable Doubt”, LIFE, Oct. 25, 1966, pp. 40–54.

[10] NEW YORK TIMES, Feb. 18, 1967, p. 19; Feb. 19, 1967, p. 43.

[11] NEW YORK TIMES, Feb. 23, 1967, p. 22.

[12] Secret Service report reprinted in James Kirkwood, AMERICAN GROTESQUE (New York: Simon and Shuster, 1970), pp. 125–128.

[13] LIFE, March 3, 1967, p. 33.

[14] “The Assassination: a New Book Poses Some Unanswered Questions,” MACLEAN’S, April 16, 1966, pp. 18–19.

[15] “Who Killed John Kennedy?” SATURDAY NIGHT, July, 1964, pp. 11–14; “MacBeth in the White House,” SATURDAY NIGHT, December 1966.

[16] “Assassination,” CANADIAN FORUM, January 20, 1964, pp. 219–220.

[17] “Conspiracy Probers May Hear Winnipegger—New Orleans ‘Very Interested’ in Report Suspected Pilot Seen Here,” WINNIPEG FREE PRESS, March 17, 1967, p. 1.

[18] Although the “friend” was not identified, a later report indicated his name was Peter Thiessen, who still lives in Winnipeg [as of 1990] and runs his own insurance agency.

[19] NEW YORK TIMES, February 23, 1967, p. 22.

[20] According to the payroll department of the WFP, his present whereabouts are unknown. In a conversation with author Michael Eddowes in the fall of 1989, I discovered that Van Bennekom attended the preliminary hearing of Clay Shaw where he met Eddowes, who also was in attendance, convinced that there was a connection between Garrison’s investigation and the Profumo Scandal of 1963. [I later was able to locate Van Bennekom, who eventually became a senior partner of UPI in Washington, D.C. He had started working for UPI after moving to Mexico City in 1968.]

[21] NEW YORK TIMES, March 14, 1967, p. 40.

[22] I spoke to Karmazin at length in April 1989.

[23] WFP, March 17, 1967, p. 1.

[24] Jim Garrison, HERITAGE OF STONE (Berkley: Medallion Books, 1970), p. 109; Jim Garrison, ON THE TRAIL OF THE ASSASSINS (New York: Sheridan Square Press, 1988); p. 110.

[25] Commission Exhibit 2350; Garrison, HERITAGE OF STONE, p. 107; Garrison, ON THE TRAIL OF THE ASSASSINS, pp. 110-112.

[26] Garrison, HERITAGE OF STONE, p. 107. [As pointed out in my report, Meyers’s call was made to the same number in Chicago on Nov. 20, 1963, at 9:09 a.m. from Kansas City. Meyers presumably either flew back to Chicago to pick up Jean Aase or she flew to Kansas City on her own to rendezvous with Meyers. I interviewed Aase in 1998, but she was quite hazy about her trip to Dallas. In 1992 she had told me that she did not know who David Ferrie was, but thought the fifteen minute call on Sept. 24, 1963, might have been for Meyers. However, when I interviewed her in Minneapolis in 1998, accompanied by her lawyer, she was certain that she had not even met Meyers until some time in October, while working as a waitress at a restaurant near the building where she lived. The number that both Ferrie and Meyers phoned (WH 4-4970) reached the building’s switchboard, not Aase’s suite.

[27] Cited by Garrison in ON THE TRAIL…, p. 319.

[28] Ibid, p. 111.

[29] Ibid, pp. 111–112.

[30] Ibid, p. 111; Committee to Investigate Assassinations, COINCIDENCE OR CONSPIRACY? (New York: Zebra Books, 1977), p. 290.

[31] Peter Noyes, LEGACY OF DOUBT (New York: Pinnacle, 1973), p. 157.

[32] WFP, March 17, 1967.

[33] READER’S GUIDE TO PERIODICAL LITERATURE, March 1966–Feb. 1967 and March 1967–Feb. 1968.

[34] “To Help Keep the Record Straight About That Book,” U.S. NEWS AND WORLD REPORT, Feb. 6, 1967, pp. 66–67.

[35] “Truth vs. Death,” TIME, March 17, 1967, p. 26; Charles Roberts, “Eyewitness in Dallas,” NEWSWEEK, Dec. 5, 1966, p. 27.

[36] “Back to Dallas,” TIME, Nov. 24, 1967, pp. 54–55; “A New Assassination Theory,” NEWSWEEK, Nov. 27, 1967, pp. 39–55; “Seeking the Existential Sleuth,” NEWSWEEK, June 13, 1967, p. 75.

[37] “He Was My Brother,” LIFE, October 17, 1967.

[38] Garrison, ON THE TRAIL…, pp. 210–213.

[39] NYT, June 26, 1967, p. 36; June 27, 1967, p. 25; June 28, 1967, p. 7; June 29, 1967, pp. 18, 87.

[40] Jon Ruddy, “Did This Man Happen Upon John Kennedy’s Assassination?” MACLEAN’S, November 1967, pp. 2–3.

[41] The same photo by Gerry Cairns of the WFP was later included in Paris Flammonde’s THE KENNEDY CONSPIRACY (New York: Meredith, 1969). The photo was never published by the paper itself. Cairns is still employed by the WFP [as of 1990].

[42] Presumably, Mr. Giesbrecht gave MACLEAN’S permission to identify him, since he had agree to be photographed in the Horizon Room at the Winnipeg Airport, to be used in the report. This was confirmed to me by Jon Ruddy, who made the photo suggestion to Giesbrecht.

[43] As a result of receiving the January 5, 1968, article from the librarian at the WFP, I now had confirmation that the man I had spoken to, who claimed to be a close relative, was the “airport informer” himself. I had been led to believe that Giesbrecht moved to British Columbia from Winnipeg, and had, in fact, contacted several individuals with that name in the Greater Vancouver area. Since there were very few “R. Giesbrecht” listings in the Winnipeg phone book during the 1960s, and working on the assumption that he had a listed phone number, being an insurance agent, I was able to narrow down the possibilities to either the person I spoke to or another “R. Giesbrecht’, living on Kent St. However, a “criss cross” directory listing sent to me revealed that this person’s first name was “Rudolf”.

[44] WINNIPEG FREE PRESS, January 5, 1968.

[45] When the WINNIPEG TRIBUNE closed down in the early 1980s, rights to their back copies were granted to the WFP. Werier still writes for the paper [as of 1990] on a free-lance basis, but in a telephone conversation in early 1990, he indicated he had no idea why Giesbrecht did not subsequently testify at the Shaw trial, and he admitted to not having followed up on the story.

[46] WINNIPEG TRIBUNE, February 1, 1968.

[47] Mr. Thiessen, also a Mennonite, was identified by name for the first time.

[48] NYT, February 23, 1967, p. 22.

[49] There has been speculation that a right-wing extremist named Joseph Milteer can be seen amongst the crowd lining Houston St. as the motorcade drove by moments before the assassination. If that is the case, possibly Isaacs was also photographed nearby.

[50] RAMPARTS, January, 1968, pp. 43–68.

[51] RAMPARTS, November 1966; reprinted January 1969, pp. 41–71.

[52] RAMPARTS, January, 1967, pp. __

[53] RAMPARTS, April, 1967, pp. 8–9.

[54] RAMPARTS, June, 1967, pp. 17–29.

[55] “The Garrison Commission…”, p. 66.

[56] The investigator could have been William Boxley (a.k.a. William Woods).

[57] RAMPARTS, January 1967, pp. 69–76.

[58] RAMPARTS, June 1968, pp. 33–36.

[59] Paris Flammonde, THE KENNEDY CONSPIRACY (New York: Meredith Press, 1969), pp. 29–33.

[60] NYT, March 1, 1969, p. 1.

[61] “The Kennedy Conspiracy” (review), COMMONWEAL, March 7, 1969, pp. 712–713.

[62] No reference to Giesbrecht is made in Edward Epstein, COUNTERPLOT (New York: Viking Press, 1968); or James Kirkwood, AMERICAN GROTESQUE, or Milton Brener, THE GARRISON CASE (1969).

[63] Flammonde, THE KENNEDY CONSPIRACY, p. 29.

[64] Ibid, p. 31.

[65] Garrison, ON THE TRAIL OF THE ASSASSINS, pp. 87–90. Garrison claims in his 1988 book that Shaw’s connection to CMC and Permindex came to the attention of his investigators too late to be of value, even though Flammonde’s book was published before the Shaw trial ended and much of the information was included in Turner’s January 1968 RAMPARTS article (p. 52). Earlier, Turner made a brief reference to an unnamed “foreign firm whose board Shaw served on” in the June 1967 article “The Inquest,” also in RAMPARTS. Since both Turner and Flammonde were closely involved in Garrison’s investigation, the learned judge’s 1988 comments are hard to believe.

[66] From 1968 until 1971 there were three listings: two “R. Giesbrecht” listings, the third “Richard E. Giesbrecht” (the airport informer). In 1975 Mr. Giesbrecht began listing his name as Richard Giesbrecht, Sr. at which time there was a new listing at the same address under “R. Giesbrecht, Jr.,” his older son.

[67] Flammonde asked Giesbrecht when he first saw a photo of Ferrie, to which he responded “five or six months ago”, which would have been February, 1967; thus his call would have been in August or September.

[68] Flammonde, THE KENNEDY CONSPIRACY, p. 31.

[69] Ibid, p. 32.

[70] Since Flammonde’s call was made prior to the MACLEAN’S article, which revealed his name publicly for the first time, it is amazing that Giesbrecht was willing to answer any questions over the phone.

[71] Garrison, ON THE TRAIL OF THE ASSASSINS, pp. 250, 251.

[72] At the time of the conversation I was led to believe that I was speaking to a relative of Giesbrecht’s; while completing this report, I learned that I had been speaking to Giesbrecht himself. As for the hearings, Giesbrecht was somewhat vague as to when he was asked to appear in Washington D.C., suggesting it could have been a request by the Warren Commission, or possibly the HSCA Hearings.

[73] “DePugh and the Minutemen: Wonderland of the Mind”, RAMPARTS, June 1970, pp. 11–12.

[74] Major General Edwin A. Walker, Resigned, “The Strange Circumstances of the Murder of Lee Harvey Oswald”, AMERICAN MERCURY, October 2, 1964.

[75] Revilo Oliver, “It is Happening Here”, AMERICAN MERCURY, February, 1961.

[76] G. L. Rockwell, “Who Wants Panty-Waist Marines?”

[77] J. Edgar Hoover, “God and Country or Communism?”, AMERICAN MERCURY, December 1957, and J. Edgar Hoover, “Deadly Menace of Pseudo-Liberals,” AMERICAN MERCURY, January 1958.

[78] Turner, “DePugh and the Minutemen.”

[79] “Ashes to Ashes”, NEWSWEEK, Sept. 11, 1967, p. 23; “The Deadly Friendship,” THE NEW REPUBLIC, Sept. 25, 1967, pp. 13–15.

[80] Turner, “DePugh and the Minutemen.”

[81] James Coates, ARMED AND DANGEROUS (New York: Hill and Wang, 1987), pp. 146–151.

[82] Coates, ARMED AND DANGEROUS, p. 156.

[83] L.A. FREE PRESS (Special Report No. 1), February 1978, p. 19.

[84] L.A. FREE PRESS, February 1978, p. 10; Garrison, ON THE TRAIL… p. 221.

[85] Ibid, p. 10.

[86] Garrison, ON THE TRAIL…, p. 221.


[88] Ibid, p. 151.

[89] Ibid, p. 147.

[90] Ibid, p. 151.

[91] William Turner, “The Minutemen”, RAMPARTS, January 1967; Turner, “DePugh and the Minutemen,” p. 12.

[92] Turner, p. 12. Rockwell makes reference to activities in New Orleans in the early sixties in a lengthy report on him in ESQUIRE, April, 1967, although no mention is made of Banister, Gatlin, Ferrie or Oswald.

[93] Turner, “The Garrison Investigation…”, pp. 47–48.

[94] Anthony Summers, CONSPIRACY (London: Gollancz, 1980); Robert Sam Anson, “THEY’VE KILLED THE PRESIDENT!” (New York: Bantam, 1975); Jim Marrs, CROSSFIRE (New York: Carroll and Graf, 1989).

[95] Coleman-Slawson memorandum (undated) cited by Anson, “THEY’VE KILLED THE PRESIDENT!”, pp. 252–253.


[97] For details on Ferrie’s close ties to organized crime, see David Scheim, CONTRACT ON AMERICA (Zebra paperbacks, 1988); and John Davis, MAFIA KINGFISH (Signet paperbacks, 1989).

[98] Turner, “The Garrison Investigation…”, p. 66.

[99] Boxley/Wood claimed to be an ex-CIA agent but, according to Garrison in his book ON THE TRAIL…, he turned out to be a CIA spy. He had filed a report on August 18, 1967, in regard to Betty McDonald Miller, who had been confused with Betty McDonald, a.k.a. Nancy Jane Mooney. [I met with Betty McDonald Miller at a McDonald’s restaurant near the Dallas-Ft. Worth airport prior to returning home from the 1991 ASK conference. Betty had earlier sent me an audio tape of her recollections about the Glover party where the Oswalds first met the Paines.]

[100] Turner, “Garrison Investigation…”, p. 66.

[101] Garrison, ON THE TRAIL…, pp. 187–192.

[102] Commission Document 1080, listed in the appendix of FAREWELL AMERICA, by “James Hepburn.”

[103] As Scott Van Whysberghe pointed out to me, it is odd that Turner did not realize that CD 1080 referred to a Boston professor at M.I.T., far removed from Texas, in that he was involved in distributing 500 copies of FAREWELL AMERICA to libraries and researchers, according to his 1984 article in REBEL magazine cited earlier.

[104] COINCIDENCE OR CONSPIRACY?, pp. 217–218. (No reference is made to Giesbrecht.)

[105] The Center For International Studies did a great deal of contract work for the CIA; see CONTEMPORARY AUTHORS, New Revision Series, Vol. 2, p. 347.

[106] David Wise and Thomas Ross, THE INVISIBLE GOVERNMENT (New York: Bantam, 1965).

[107] Canfield and Weberman, COUP D’ÉTAT IN AMERICA, p. 21. COINCIDENCE OR CONSPIRACY?, p. 218.

[108] Commission Document 942; Canfield and Weberman, COUP D’ÉTAT…, p. 21. COINCIDENCE…, p. 218.

[109] I spoke to Dr. Charles Murret, a dentist, in the fall of 1989, who agreed to pass on a letter to his sister Marilyn, who was in France but would be returning. I was able to contact her in the spring of 1990 at her mother’s residence, but she refused to speak to me.

[110] It is possible that Isaacs was interviewed in Hawaii or Japan for that matter without his wife’s knowledge. [It is clear from the documents that Prof. Isaacs was not interviewed by the FBI in regard to the absurd allegations made by an anti-communist reporter named Paul Scott.]

[111] Canfield and Weberman, COUP D’ÉTAT…, p. 21.

[112] Ibid, p. 22.

[113] Ibid, p. 21.

[114] Ibid, p. 22.

[115] CD 1080, p. 1.

[116] Turner, “Some Disturbing Parallels,” p. 36.

[117] I applied for a copy of each from the FBI and was given a file number and assured in May that my application would be dealt with in due course, although it has now been over a year since I first made my request. [Not long after this article was published in THE THIRD DECADE, I finally received some documents, and later a few more. I have also obtained several others from researcher Bill Adams, and most recently from JFK Archives II.]

[118] I have spoken to Turner in San Rafael, CA. He confirmed to me that all his information about Giesbrecht came from Garrison; he had not read the Winnipeg news reports nor the MACLEAN’S article. I have attempted to correspond with Paris Flammonde, a resident of Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, but to no avail; unfortunately he has an unlisted phone number. [I met and spoke to Turner at the 1993 Chicago JFK/RFK/MLK conference, and was able to speak to Flammonde by phone in the mid-1990s. He also wrote a popular book on flying saucers, which probably caused him to get an unlisted phone number for obvious reasons.]

[119] Unfortunately, Garrison did not respond, nor has he to five subsequent letters. His personal secretary confirmed that they were forwarded to him. [I did learn later that Garrison had been “burned” so often that he had become distrustful of researchers.]

[120] Which I learned in late 1989 was actually the “airport informer” himself.

[121] Who only vaguely recalled the Giesbrecht allegations.

[122] Whom I also sent the MACLEAN’S article before phoning; he was not interested in discussing the subject with me.

[123] It could be that Giesbrecht’s allegations did not reinforce Garrison’s growing contention that the CIA was behind the assassination [although he did accuse elements of the CIA during his TV address to the nation in June 1967].

[124] Judy Winters; April 12, 1989.

[125] I spoke to Mrs. Karmazin in the fall of 1989, who referred to Garrison as “Jim” and had read his book; she indicated to me that he had become somewhat of a “recluse.”

[126] Davis to Whitmey, Jan. 27, 1989.

[127] Belin to Whitmey, June 26, 1989.

[128] Listed in FAREWELL AMERICA.

[129] Ibid.

[130] “I Must Be Free,” TIME, Nov. 10, 1961, p. 27.

[131] “Shootin’ Match,” TIME, Feb. 9, 1962; “Unmuzzled,” TIME, April 13, 1962, p. 23; “Talking in Texas,” TIME, April 27, 1962.

[132] NYT, Dec. 7, 1963, p. 1.

[133] Mark Lane, RUSH TO JUDGMENT (Penguin Books, 1967), p. 384.

[134] “How the Chinese Killed John Birch,” LIFE, May 12, 1961, pp. 128–129.

[135] “Birchers’ Friends, Foes,” LIFE, May 12, 1961, p. 126.

[136] Richard E. Giesbrecht on Adamdell Cr. in Winnipeg, Manitoba, whom I phoned in the fall of 1987.

[137] I later learned that a 15-year-old daughter was the victim. [Actually, she was eleven.]

[138] Lake Orio appears to be the only lake anywhere near Detroit, other than Lake Erie; see Franco and Hammer, HOFFA’S MAN (Prentice-Hall, 1987). [I misunderstood Mr. Giesbrecht, who was referring to Detroit Lakes, MN, a popular resort area, where he and his family vacationed every summer.]

[139] Based on the Jan. 5, 1968, article from the WFP, listing Mr. Giesbrecht’s address.

[140] Hosty to Whitmey, Nov. 15, 1989.

[141] Oswald’s alleged letter is reprinted in Michael Eddowes, THE OSWALD FILE (New York: Ace Books, 1977), p. 79.

[142] Discussed in detail in Edward J. Epstein, LEGEND: THE SECRET LIFE OF LEE HARVEY OSWALD (New York: Reader’s Digest Press, 1978), p. 16. Both “Valeri Kostin” and “Valeri Kostikov” are listed as KGB agents in the appendix of John Barron, KGB: THE SECRET WORK OF SOVIET SECRET AGENTS (New York: Bantam, 1974), p. 528.

[143] NYT, Feb. 23, 1967, p. 22.

[144] Hosty to Whitmey, Nov. 15, 1989.

[145] Letter and obituary sent by Peter Thiessen on April 3, 1990.