«NOVEMBER 22, 1963 (Friday) 12:00 AM (Nov. 22, 1963) Nine Secret Service agents drinking at Pat Kirkwood’s bar the “Cellar Door” in Fort Worth, ...»
Gilberto Policarpo Lopez flies to Havana, Cuba from Mexico City. The flight (#465) carries a crew of nine. Policarpo is the only passenger. The HSCA will later conclude: “ Lopez’ association with the Fair Play for Cuba Committee, however, coupled with the facts that the dates of his travel to Mexico via Texas coincide with the assassination, plus the reports in Mexico that Lopez’ activities were “suspicious,” all amount to a troublesome circumstance that the committee was unable to resolve with confidence.” (HSCA) 12:30 PM (Nov. 27, 1963) LBJ’s first address to a joint session of Congress emphasizes the theme of continuity in United States government. Regarding foreign policy, he declares that “this nation will keep its commitments from South Vietnam to West Berlin.” He pledges continuation of foreign aid to Africa, Asia, and Latin America. In addition, he promises continued support of the United Nations by the United States. In domestic affairs, he asks Congress to enact a tax-cut bill and stresses economy in government spending.
2:50 PM (Nov. 27, 1963) Jackie Kennedy pays a visit to LBJ in the business end of the White House. This will be her first and last visit to see LBJ. TKAT 4:00 PM (Nov. 27, 1963) Bobby Kennedy comes by the Oval Office for his first private meeting with LBJ. Points of discussion concern Bobby’s anger over the swearing-in of LBJ on Air Force One [LBJ has publicly stated that he did so at RFK’s urging, which RFK denies], the delay in leaving Dallas after the assassination, and LBJ’s abortive effort to use the Oval Office on Saturday. The meeting is over in twelve minutes. The two men will not see each other privately for almost two months. TKAT For the Thanksgiving holiday, RFK and his family remain at Hickory Hill. Bobby has a private conversation with Walter Sheridan (who has been invited to RFK’s home). RFK wants to know what Sheridan has found out about Jimmy Hoffa’s possible involvement in JFK’s assassination. Sheridan suspects that Hoffa was involved. “I remember telling him what Hoffa had said when John Kennedy was killed...I didn’t want to tell him, but he made me tell him...Hoffa was down in Miami in some restaurant when the word came of the assassination, and he got up on the table and cheered. At least that’s what we heard.” RFK wants Sheridan to fly to Dallas and make some private inquiries. He also wants Sheridan to check to see what Marina Oswald really knows about it all. Over the weekend, RFK takes his family to the Kennedy compound in Palm Beach. Brothers Also on this day, the FBI begins conducting an initial series of rifle tests with the alleged assassination weapon. The FBI has three master marksmen, using Lee Harvey Oswald’s rifle, rapidly firing a series of 3 shots at STATIONARY targets located only 45 feet away. The three experts each fire 3 shots within 9 seconds, 8 seconds and 6 seconds, respectively. In this test none of the marksmen are physically capable of firing the three rounds within the 5.6 second requirement. Also, all of the marksmen’s shots were high and to the right, missing the stationary targets located only 45 feet away.
A copy of the Zapruder film is received at FBI headquarters in Washington, D.C., today. It is held until December 4, when it is returned to the Secret Service in Dallas. BT A Miami Secret Service informant today tells Special Agent Ernest Aragon that if the assassination involved an international plot in which Castro had participated, then Castro’s agent in the plot would have been Machado, a well-known terrorist. There are rumors in the Miami Cuban community that Machado had been assigned to escort Oswald from Texas to Cuba after the assassination. The plan went awry, the report continues, because Oswald had not been wearing clothing of a prearranged color and because of the shooting of Dallas Patrolman J.D. Tippit. The reports on Machado, along with other suspicions of Castro complicity in the assassination, are forwarded only in brief summary form by the Secret Service to the Warren Commission. The committee will find no record of follow-up action. (HSCA) Memo from FBI headquarters to its office in Mexico City, today states: “If tapes covering any contacts subject (Oswald) with Soviet or Cuban embassies available, forward to bureau for laboratory examination and analysis together with transcript. Include tapes previously reviewed Dallas if they were returned to you.’’ By this date, Senator Everett M. Dirksen has proposed a Senate Judiciary Committee investigation and Representative Charles E. Goodell has proposed a join Senate-House investigation. Also, Texas Attorney General Waggoner Carr has announed that a state court of inquiry will be established. LBJ will agree to the idea of a Comission no later than Nov. 28. It appears that the idea of a Presidential commission to report on the assassination of JFK was first suggested by Eugene Rostow, Dean of the Yale Law School, in a telephone call to LFJ aide Bill Moyers during the afternoon of Nov. 24th. In less than two and a half hours following LHO’s death, Rostow thought about and discussed with at least one other person the idea of a commission. He has also had one or more phone conversations with Katzenbach about this. TA November 28, 1963 Statement by Texas Highway Patrolman Hurchel Jacks: “We were assigned by the Secret Service to prevent any pictures of any nature to be taken of the President’s car on the inside.” In an interview with the FBI today, Sheriff Decker basically declines to discuss the assassination further.
Marguerite Oswald (being held by the Secret Service in the Inn of the Six Flags several miles outside of Dallas) is released today from custody after making repeated demands for freedom and threatening to secure legal counsel. She wants to say goodbye to Marina and her grandchildren, but the federal authorities prevent her. An interpreter from the Secret Service comes to Marina’s motel room door and tells Marguerite: “We are interviewing her, and she is on tape. She will get in touch with you.” “So I never saw Marina after that time,” Marguerite says.
Silvia Odio confides to her friend, Lucille Connell, that she knew LHO from meetings of Cuban exiles, and considered him brilliant and clever. She had learned from a source in New Orleans that LHO should not be trusted -- that he was probably trying to infiltrate Cuban groups in Dallas as a “double agent.” Odio also tells the same thing to her psychiatrist, Dr. Burton Einspruch. Connell contacts the FBI and passes along Odio’s story to them.
Gilberto Alvarado is being held at a CIA safe house in Mexico City, where he is undergoing intensive interrogation in collaboration with the FBI. Alvarado has claimed that he was inside the Cuban consulate when LHO visited, and has said he personally saw a Cuban official give Oswald $6500.00 in cash on September 18. There is considerable doubt about his allegation, because the FBI says it can prove Oswald was in New Orleans on September 18. TKAT In a Teletype to the Director and the Dallas office dated today, the New Orleans FBI office reports that the investigation of Jack S. Martin’s allegations is being concluded and notes that “all allegations against [David] Ferrie stem from Jack S. Martin who was previously confined to the psychiatric ward of Charity Hospital, New Orleans, for character disorder. Martin is well known to New Orleans office and is considered thoroughly unreliable.” This Teletype also sets forth additional information obtained during a second interview
with Ferrie from earlier today. In it, Ferrie has again denied that he has ever had any contact with Oswald. The FBI report of the interview notes, however:
David William Ferrie reinterviewed today and advised at time of Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba he was very much embarrassed and concerned over lack of air cover provided and severely criticized President Kennedy, both in public and private. Ferrie stated he has never made any statement that President Kennedy should be killed with any intention to do so and has never at any time outlined any plan or made any statement how this could be done or who should do it. Ferrie said he is very outspoken and may have used an offhand or colloquial expression, “He ought to be shot” in expressing his feelings concerning Cuban situation. Ferrie said he has also been critical of any President riding in open car and has stated anyone could hide in the bushes and shoot a President.
The FBI and Secret Service investigation into the possibility that Oswald and Ferrie had been associated in the Civil Air Patrol comes to an end a few days after the allegations are reported. A Secret Service report concludes that “information furnished by Jack S.
Martin to the effect that David William Ferrie associated with Lee Harvey Oswald at New Orleans and trained Oswald in the use of a rifle” was “without foundation.” It states further that “Jack S. Martin, who has the appearance of being an alcoholic, has the reputation of furnishing incorrect information to law enforcement officers, attorneys, etc.” The Secret Service reports today that three shots were fired - the first hit the President, the second hit Governor John Connally of Texas, and the third struck the President. There were no other shots according to the Secret Service.
At 3:21 PM today, LBJ calls Senator James Q. Eastland, a Mississippi Democrat, to get his cooperation in shutting down a proposal for a Senate committee hearing which will produce a record of the fact surrounding the assassination. LBJ’s initiative will prove successful.
November 29, 1963 President LBJ officially creates a commission to evaluate all the facts and circumstances surrounding the assassination of JFK and the subsequent killing of the alleged assassin and to report its findings and conclusions to him. (Executive Order No. 11103.) In his book, Vantage Point, LBJ will state that Eugene Rostow called the White House on November 24th and suggested a commission, and that Joe Alsop and Dean Rusk also recommended a commission. TA This is the first day that federal authorities have any legal jurisdiction in the assassination. From November 22, 1963 until today the only authorities empowered to conduct an investigation are the Dallas Police Department and Sheriff’s office or the office of the Dallas District Attorney. Only after the Warren Commission’s report is issued will a law be passed making the assassination of high federal officials, including the President, Vice President and Speaker of the House of Representatives, a federal crime. This legislation will actually be recommended by the Warren Commission.
J. Edgar Hoover tells President LBJ (over the telephone) that the FBI report on the case, portraying Lee Harvey Oswald as the lone assassin, is almost finished.
President LBJ meets with Central Intelligence Agency director, John A. McCone and Presidential assistant for National Security Affairs, Mc George Bundy.
LBJ also has a telephone conversation with Congressman Charles Halleck during which he says: “This thing is getting pretty serious and our folks are worried about it... it has some foreign implications... CIA and other things... and I’m going to try to get the Chief Justice on it.” Johnson adds “we can’t have Congress, FBI and others saying that Khrushchev or Castro ordered the assassination:” “This thing is so touchy from an international standpoint.... This is a question that could involve our losing 39 million people.” In a telephone conversation with Everett Dirksen, LBJ says: “These investigations in the House and Senate on this Dallas affair... Hoover’s a little concerned about [them] reflecting on him. He’s making a very full report on it. The [Texas] attorney general’s gettin’ an inquiry - a state inquiry [going on] he’s a very young, and able, and effective man. And we don’t wanna... we got some international complications that could come up to us if we are not very careful.” TKAT Sometime after 3 PM today, LBJ learns that Chief Justice Earl Warren is adamant about not wanting to serve on a commission investigating JFK’s assassination. LBJ requests that Warren come to the Oval Office at 4:30 PM to discuss an urgent matter. LBJ intends to administer a healthy dose of what is well known on Capitol Hill as the “Johnson treatment.” TKAT The incriminating palm print of Lee Harvey Oswald’s, taken off the rifle butt in Dallas, arrives at Washington’s FBI lab. This is 3 days after all other Dallas police evidence has been turned over to the Bureau on orders from President LBJ.
Also on this day, J. Edgar Hoover sends a memorandum to the State Department subject-headed: “Assassination of President John F. Kennedy November 22, 1963.” In this memorandum, Hoover reports that the Bureau has briefed “Mr. George Bush of the Central Intelligence Agency” shortly after the assassination on the reaction of Cuban exiles in Miami.
A source with close connections to the intelligence community confirms that President Bush started working for the CIA in 1960 or 61, using his oil business (the Houston based Zapata Off-Shore Company) as a cover for clandestine activities.
A memorandum from J. Edgar Hoover on this date cites a discussion he has had today with LBJ. “The President then indicated our conclusions are: 1) he [Oswald] is the one who did it; 2) after the President was hit, Governor Connally was hit; 3) the President would have been hit three times except for the fact that Governor Connally turned after the first shot and was hit by the second...” Around this time period - a week after the assassination - RFK sends Bill Walton, a trusted Kennedy family intimate, to Moscow with a secret message for the Soviet government from RFK and Jackie. The message is personally delivered to Georgi Bolshakov