July 28, 2012
WHITEWASH-the report on the Warren Report by Harold Weisberg, Chapter 7: Oswald's Legal Rights III
Knoxville, Tennessee (JFKASSASSINATION) Today JFKASSASSINATION resumes our report on Chapter 7 of Harold Weisberg's book "Whitewash--the report on the Warren Report", published in 1965.
The title of Chapter 7 is Oswald's Legal Rights.
Harold Weisberg titles this section of Chapter 7 "The Interrogations"
Mr. Weisberg begins by saying:
"There was no transcript of any kind."*
*Thomas Edison invented the phonograph, making the recording of the human voice possible, in 1877, but Dallas Police Captain Fritz told the Warren Commission that 'the size of his office & the lack of a recording machine' were the reasons that no audio recordings were made of the interrogations.
Mr. Weisberg questions these reasons & argues that not only could recording equipment been brought in, the sessions could have been recorded in "one of the 5 much larger offices" at Dallas Police HQ.
He also points out that there were 2 FBI men & 2 Secret Service men sitting in on the interrogations of Lee Harvey Oswald as well as a postal inspector & as many as 4 detectives.
Weisberg argues that surely one of these people could have been replaced by a stenographer.
While the Warren Report admits that Captain Fritz "kept no notes," Mr. Weisberg explains that the inspector present disputes that claim "& even Captain Fritz said he had 'rough notes.'"
Weisberg questions what the Dallas police intended to use in court in the case against Oswald if they had no record of the questions asked him during interrogations or his answers.
Very surprising indeed is Mr. Weisberg's statement that Captain Fritz's report has no reference whatsoever to asking Oswald about the shooting of JFK.
Added to that is the Report's calling Oswald a LIAR "at least 6 times." On what hard evidence would they be able to base such a claim if there were no transcripts or recordings of what Oswald said during interrogation?
One of the most interesting parts of this section is the evidence provided by Inspector Thomas J.Kelley of the US Secret Service who talked privately** to Oswald just before he was taken down the elevator (where he would be shot by Jack Ruby).
**Kelley, in his report, states that he 'approached Oswald....out of the hearing of the others except, perhaps one of Captain Fritz's men...'
Kelley asked Oswald if he would talk with the Secret Service after he had secured counsel.
Kelley wrote in his report that he let Oswald know that the Secret Service was anxious to talk with him.....
"as soon as he had secured counsel; that we were responsible for the safety of the President; that the Dallas police had charged him with the assassination....but that he had denied it; we were therefore very anxious to talk with him to make certain that the correct story was developing as it related to the assassination."
Inspector Kelley adds that LEE HARVEY OSWALD "said that he would be glad to discuss this proposition with his attorney & that after he talked to one, we could either discuss it with him or discuss it with his attorney, if the attorney thought it was the wise thing to do...."***
***Lee Harvey Oswald never got the opportunity to speak with his attorney & the Secret Service never got a chance to 'make certain that the correct story was developing' because Jack Ruby shot him shortly after Inspector Kelley talked with him.
Inspector Kelley was questioned in 1976 by the House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA). An excerpt follows:
Did you engage in any conversation with Lee Harvey Oswald?
Yes, I did.
What was the nature of that conversation?
I had asked Oswald if he had assassinated the President. I told him who I was. I said that the Secret Service had the responsibility for protecting the President, that he was in custody accused of assassinating the President, and we wanted to know whether he had done it, and if he hadn't done it, to let us know; if he had done it, to admit it.
He indicated that he would talk to me later on.
Were you also present at the time Lee Harvey Oswald was shot?
I wasn't in the immediate vicinity. I was upstairs in the police office. We had just left Oswald in the police headquarters.
The police took him down to the basement to transport him. Mr. Sorrels and I remained upstairs.
When we heard that he had been shot, we immediately went down to the basement. Oswald was still in the basement.
The ambulance had been backed in to take him to the hospital.
I attempted to enter the ambulance with Oswald to go to the hospital.
I was prevented from getting into the ambulance by the Dallas policemen who got into the ambulance with him.****
House Select Committee on Assassinations