By Robert Morrow
From RFK: A Candid Biography of Robert F. Kennedy by C. David Heymann, p. 505:
Ted Van Dyk: “In the middle of the night I was shaken awake by David Gartner, a personal aide to the vice president. And Dave said, ‘Humphrey says get up, Robert Kennedy's been shot.’ And I said, ‘David, that's a sick joke.’ He said, ‘No, no, Robert Kennedy's been shot.’
“So I got up and Humphrey was absolutely distraught, he was just absolutely beside himself with anxiety and concern. And we then received a telephone call from Steve Smith and Pierre Salinger in California. They said, ‘There's a brain surgeon we trust in Boston. Could you arrange for a private plane to fly him to Los Angeles? Because Robert Kennedy's still alive and there's a possibility of saving him.’
Humphrey called up the commanding general of the air force, who happened to be there at the academy. And Humphrey said, ‘Will you please dispatch this plane?’ The general said, "I surely will."
“Ten minutes later we received a call from an aide in the White House: President Johnson had
canceled the plane because Humphrey had no authority to send it. The fact was, Johnson preferred Robert Kennedy dead.
“It was one of the most heinous acts I've ever experienced in my life, and it all but broke Humphrey's heart.” --Ted Van Dyk, Aide to then Vice President Hubert H. HumphreyBio: Ted Van Dyk has been active in national policy and politics for more than 30 years. He began active military duty in 1957 as a U.S. Army intelligence analyst. His subsequent jobs have included Soviet specialist and intelligence analyst at the Pentagon; senior assistant to Vice President Hubert Humphrey and coordinator of foreign assistance programs in the Carter Administration, to name just a few. He also served as a senior political and policy advisor to seven Democratic presidential candidates. Since early 2001, he has been an editorial-page columnist for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer and has continued writing periodically for national publications.
From Mutual Contempt by Jeff Shesol, p444
LBJ slitting his finger across his throat at the mention of Robert Kennedy, spring 1968
“And friendliness, though, was quickly fleeting. Eugene McCarthy soon paid a courtesy call to the Oval Office, and when McCarthy mentioned Kennedy, the president said nothing.; instead he drew a finger across his throat, silently, in a slitting motion. Later that week, Johnson exploded at press reports of the April 3 meeting with Kennedy and Sorensen, whom, he now charged, had leaked the story to score political points.”
LYNDON JOHNSON HAD A MURDEROUS ATTITUDE TOWARDS ROBERT KENNEDY -
Robert Caro, in the Passage of Power, describes the LBJ-RFK relationship post 1960 Democratic convention, where RFK had moved heaven and earth attempting to keep LBJ off the 1960 Democratic ticket. Caro, p.140:
John Connally, who during long days of conversation with this author was willing to answer almost any question put to him, no matter how delicate the topic, wouldn't answer when asked what Johnson said about Robert Kennedy. When the author pressed him, he finally said flatly: "I am not going to tell you what he said about him." During the months after the convention, when Johnson was closeted alone back in Texas with an old ally he would sometimes be asked about Robert Kennedy. He would reply with a gesture. Raising his big right hand, he would draw the side of it across the neck in a slowing, slitting movement. Sometimes that gesture would be his only reply; sometimes, as during a meeting with Ed Clark in Austin, he would say, as his hand moved across his neck, "I'll cut his throat if it's the last thing I do."
Lyndon Johnson stealing governmental gold and treasure; ordering the murders of Sen. Ralph Yarborough and Bobby Baker
(Mr. H was a CIA operative until 1965)
Mr. H. was asked if there was a time after Kennedy’s murder when he spoke to Connally or Johnson about the treasure. He said there was not and that he had done his job and there wasn’t anything else he was “asked to perform.” He was asked if he had any talks with Johnson while he was President regarding any assignments Johnson asked him to perform. Mr. H. said there were but “none were connected to the Peak.” He was asked if Johnson had given him a specific assignment
Mr. H: Yes he did.
Clarence: What was that?
Mr. H: He wanted me to remove Senator Yarborough.
Clarence: When you say remove him…?
Mr. H: He wanted Yarborough dead. This was just after the second visit I made to the Peak.
Clarence: It wasn’t long after that then?
Mr. H: That’s correct.
Clarence: Why did he want Yarborough dead?
Mr. H: He said Yarborough had been a thorn in his side forever.
Clarence: How did he feel about Connally?
Mr. H: Connally was his protégé. He brought him along, schooled him to that point.
Clarence: How and when did he want you to remove Yarborough?
Mr. H: How and when was my choice.
Clarence: But you intended not to?
Mr. H: That’s correct. I told him I would, though.
Mr. H. was asked why he told Johnson he would do the job when he intended notto do it. He said that he hated Johnson because he suspected that he had something to do with Kennedy’s murder and he felt Johnson needed something to worry about, meaning not knowing when he was going to “do” Yarborough, or him for that matter. When the events of the interview were recapped, Mr H revealed and confirmed that he was with the Central Intelligence Agency and that he left the agency in December 1965. He was asked if he had received orders from the Kennedys during that time period, but before President Kennedy was murdered.
Mr. H: Yes, I definitely did.
Clarence: During that time did you visit Victoria Peak?
Mr. H: On those two occasions I spoke of.
Clarence: With President Kennedy and Vice President Johnson and not long after that with Bobby Kennedy, Connally, and Johnson and other people.
Mr. H: That’s correct.
Clarence: The second time that you were in the basin did Johnson say anything about what he wanted to do with the gold?
Mr. H: Johnson had planned to take this gold, what amount I had no idea how much he planned to take out at that point. He said he was taking that to his domain. Johnson had mentioned his domain many times in the past as his ranch.
Clarence: Is his ranch in Texas?
Mr. H: Yes, it is… Johnson City.
Clarence: Did Connally say anything during that day?
Mr. H: Very little. Connally was like a little boy following his dad around.
Clarence: This thing that Johnson asked you to do [murdering Sen. Ralph Yarborough]; did Yarborough ever become aware of it?
Mr. H: No, he did not… to my knowledge.
Mr. H. said that he had informed the Agency about Johnson’s request to have him assassinate Senator Yarborough. He said that he had advised Tracy Barnes. He said, “Tracy was my immediate.” The subject of the conversation between Mr. H and Johnson involving Yarborough was on the interview videotape, but not all of that particular conversation. Later, Mr. H said that when Johnson asked him to kill Yarborough, he replied, “You are the President, my President, and your wish is my command.” Mr. H claimed that he liked Yarborough and he had no intention of harming him. During the same conversation he claimed that Johnson said, “Bobby Baker has been part of the family since we were kids, but that son-of-a-bitch could bury me. You might as well include him.”
WILL BILL MOYERS EVER TELL THE TRUTH ABOUT LYNDON JOHNSON?
Roger Stone writes:
"Get that goddamned "bubble [top] off unless it's pouring rain" said Bill Moyers just hours before John Kennedy's head was blown off in Dallas on November 22, 1963. Moyers, doing advance work for Lyndon Johnson in Austin, was speaking to a Ms. Harris who told the Secret Service. "Goddamn" was a favorite word of Moyer's boss Lyndon Johnson and the "bubbletop" was a removable, black protective top for the president's limousine.
While the bubble-top was not bullet-proof it was opague and would have prevented a sniper in a tall building from getting a clear 'head-shot".
After the murder of JFK, Bill Moyers assumed a lot of power as a very young and inner circle aide to Lyndon Johnson. One of the things that attracted a young Bill Moyers to Lyndon Johnson was that LBJ exuded "power," not that LBJ was a decent, honest and likeable man.
In the research for my New York Times Bestselling book- The Man Who Killed Kennedy- the case Against LBJ I had the opportunity to examine Moyers.
The reality of LBJ was that he was a mean, cruel, sadistic man whose corruption was of Biblical proportions. LBJ also had a spectacular hatred of the Kennedys. But he had power and that is what a young Bill Moyers was attracted to. In fact Moyers likes to tell the story of how as a college student he would go to Sunday brunch at the Johnson house where he would mingle with LBJ's close friend and neighbor FBI director J. Edgar Hoover, LBJ's mentors Sen. Richard Russell and Sam Rayburn, the "powerful" Speaker of the House.
Legendary Texas reporter Sarah McLendon (who rose to be the dean of the White House press corps) said that "religious aide" Bill Moyers was brought into the Johnson camp to act as a beard to facilitate the adultery of then Senate Majority Leader Lyndon Johnson with his secretary Mary Margaret Wiley.
McLendon from her memoir:Mr. President, Mr. President!
"Bill Moyers just began handling the press for Lyndon at that time. Moyers, who'd graduated from Southwest Theological Institute in Fort Worth, had been brought to Washington because of another rumor: there had been speculation that LBJ's relationship with his top secretary Mary Margaret Wiley had become an intimate as well as a professional one. Concerned, Lyndon had asked his good friend Harry Provence of the Waco Tribune and several other Texas editors to look for someone to prevent that kind of talk. And who better to give the Vice Presidential staff a more "sanctified" appearance than a young man headed for the ministry? So Moyers was hired on, ostensibly to deal with policy concerning religion and to answer letters that had a religious tone. In actuality, he was a chaperone who would travel with Lyndon and Mary Margaret to show that all was on the up-and-up."
Mary Margaret Wiley later went on to marry another key LBJ aide, Jack Valenti, who let his "wife" keep sleeping with LBJ. The Secret Service told author Ron Kessler that LBJ was having sex with 5 of his 8 secretaries.
Old time lawyers in Austin will tell you that before LBJ would hire a secretary he would ask about her "Does she shuck her drawers?"
A good question to ask is why has Bill Moyers not written a book about his times with Lyndon Johnson? Moyers has said that he was attracted to LBJ's power. Post JFK assassination Moyers (in his twenties) immediately becomes one of LBJ's closest, most powerful aides. This seems like a ripe topic for an interesting book. Maybe Moyers has sat on this book because if he wrote it he would have to tell the truth about LBJ's fantastic corruption, scary mental instabilities, hatred of the Kennedys, his sadism, his cruelty, his beyond outrageous behavior.
Bill Moyers is obviously a man not ready to deal with the terrible truth about Lyndon Johnson. A prime example of this was in 2003 when the History Channel ran a series on the JFK assassination that dealt with the role of Lyndon Johnson in the murder of John Kennedy. It was called The Men Who Killed Kennedy: The Guilty Men, episodes 7, 8 and 9.
Moyers, Valenti and Gerald Ford and the Johnson family went ballistic and demanded that the series, one of the most insightful ever on the JFK assassination, be ripped down off of TV. The History Channel in a spectacularly craven act of folding to political pressure complied.
The truth had hit home.
Jack Valenti, the man who married LBJ's secretary then continued to let Johnson sleep with her, was the man in Hollywood who was also orchestrating the media's vicious attacks on Oliver Stone's JFK, a movie that implied LBJ's participation in the JFK assassination. Those attacks by an army of CIA media assets were occurring full throttle 6 months before the movie JFK was even released at Christmas, 1991.
Valenti knew what a liar LBJ was as well as a "mean bully" who "could humiliate you, both publicly and privately."
Bill Moyers was the one who Deputy Attorney General Nicholas Katzenbach sent a notorious memo 3 days post JFK assassination saying "The public should be satisfied that Oswald was the lone assassin; that he did not have confederates who are still at large; and that the evidence was such that he would have been convicted at trial."
The idea of investigating the new president LBJ, whose every private utterance concerning Robert Kennedy was a death threat, or the CIA in the JFK assassination was verboten - off the table - even before the Warren Commission was created.
The whitewashed Warren Report went on to be denounced and ridiculed probably more than any document in world history except perhaps for the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, an anti-semitic hoax.
Moyers has probably chosen not to write his memoirs because in Moyers' diary there are probably just too many examples of LBJ's depravity, lunacy and documented unhinged hatred of the Kennedys that would have to be dealt with. To tell the truth would discredit Lyndon Johnson and, more importantly from Moyer's point of view, discredit the people like himself who enabled this dangerous monster to operate.
And to deal honestly with that material would lead the reader straight to the truth about the JFK assassination: that LBJ murdered John Kennedy before the Kennedys could destroy him first.
Richard Goodwin wrote about LBJ's mental instabilities in the New York Times on Aug. 21, 1988 in a column titled President Lyndon Johnson: The War Within. Goodwin's chapter on LBJ's mental problems in his book Remembering America is entitled "Descent" and is filled to the brim with anecdotes about LBJ's hatreds, bucketfuls of perceived humiliations, paranoia, nuttiness - so much so the chapter title "Descent Into Madness" would have been more apt. Bill Moyers and Richard Goodwin were both fully aware Lyndon Johnson was a lunatic.
Richard Goodwin in the NYT:
"A few days before, I had been sitting in Bill Moyers's office, when Bill walked in, visibly shaken, his face pale. ''I just came from a conversation with the President,'' he said. ''He told me he was going to fire everybody who didn't agree with him, that Hubert [Humphrey] could not be trusted and we weren't to tell him anything; then he began to explain that the Communist way of thinking had infected everyone around him, that his enemies were deceiving the people and, if they succeeded, there was no way he could stop World War III.''
"Suppose he really does go crazy,'' I said. And then, answering my own question: ''I tell you what would happen if we went public with our doubts. They could assemble a panel of psychiatrists to examine the President, and he would tell them how sad it made him that two boys he loved so much could have thought such a thing, and then explain his behavior so calmly and reasonably that when he was finished, we would be the ones committed."
Shortly thereafter, I talked with a psychiatrist who was also a close personal friend. After he agreed to treat our conversation as privileged, I described the President's behavior in detail as I had observed it. At the time, I did not even inform Moyers of this step; nor did he tell me, until years later, that he had independently followed the same course, speaking with two different psychiatrists.
All three doctors offered essentially the same opinion: that Johnson's behavior - if the layman's descriptions we provided were accurate -seemed to correspond to a textbook case of paranoid disintegration, the eruption of long-suppressed irrationalities."
Lyndon Johnson: "textbook case of paranoid disintegration." Justifiably frightening - that man had his finger on the nuclear button. A paranoid in disintegration is not a case of a person "about" to drive his car off the cliff; a paranoid in disintegration is a person who HAS driven his car off the cliff and is freefalling into a 1,000 foot gorge.
In a nutshell, the president of the United State, Lyndon Baines Johnson, the man with his finger on the nuclear button, had gone bat shit crazy by the summer of 1965. What could possibly have been weighing on his mind?
Murdering John Kennedy and escalating Vietnam are two things that come to mind.
I suggest reading The Day It Became the Longest War by Lt. Gen. Charles Cooper, USMC (Ret.) Cooper describes a fall 1965 meeting that Lyndon Johnson had with the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The rub was the JCS wanted to escalate Vietnam quicker than Defense Secretary Robert McNamara would allow.
Lt. Gen. Cooper has a "crystal clear" memory of how that meeting went:
"Seemingly deep in thought, President Johnson turned his back on them for a minute or so, then suddenly discarding the calm, patient demeanor he had maintained throughout the meeting, whirled to face them and exploded. I almost dropped the map. He screamed obscenities, he cursed them personally, he ridiculed them for coming to his office with their "military advice." Noting that it was he who was carrying the weight of the free world on his shoulders, he called them filthy names-shitheads, dumb shits, pompous assholes-and used "the F-word" as an adjective more freely than a Marine in boot camp would use it. He then accused them of trying to pass the buck for World War III to him. It was unnerving, degrading.After the tantrum, he resumed the calm, relaxed manner he had displayed earlier and again folded his arms. It was as though he had punished them, cowed them, and would now control them. Using soft-spoken profanities, he said something to the effect that they all knew now that he did not care about their military advice. After disparaging their abilities, he added that he did expect their help.
He suggested that each one of them change places with him and assume that five incompetents had just made these "military recommendations." He told them that he was going to let them go through what he had to go through when idiots gave him stupid advice, adding that he had the whole damn world to worry about, and it was time to "see what kind of guts you have."
I wonder how many times Bill Moyers has seen LBJ "bring the crazy'" like that, with all the accompanying abusive behavior? Moyers must have a library of anecdotes like that which he is sitting on.
Bill Moyers has described Lyndon Johnson as a "Colossus." I wonder how many anecdotes Bill Moyers have that show Lunatic Lyndon to be colossally corrupt, colossally sadistic, colossally narcisstic, colossally pathological or colossally insane?
Answer: a colossal amount of them.
What about that colossal blood feud for the better part of a decade with Robert Kennedy? A "blood feud" is defined as "a feud in which the members of hostile families or clans murder each other." In other words, blood has been spilt - that is why the hatred is so intense, so enduring. Moyers might have to address questions having unpleasant answers such as "Why was the hatred of LBJ and Robert Kennedy so over-the-top?"
After Moyers left Lunatic Lyndon in 1966 he had lunch with Robert Kennedy. In LBJ's mind that was like having tea with Satan Incarnate and he and Moyers never talked again.
In 2007 Arthur Schlesinger's Journals 1952-2000 was published from his daily dairy. Schlesinger mentions a 1969 conversation involving Bill Moyers:
We talked a bit about the problem of writing about Johnson. Bill said, as he has said to me before (and Dick Goodwin has said even more often), that one great trouble was that no one would believe it. He said that he could not see how one could write about Johnson the private monster and Johnson the public statesman and construct a credible narrative. "He is a sick man," Bill said. At one point he and Dick Goodwin became so concerned that they decided to read up on mental illness - Dick read up on paranoia and Bill on the manic-depressive cycle.
Schlesinger also wrote about a January 15, 1971 conversation with McGeorge Bundy, who was the National Security Advisor under both JFK and Lyndon Johnson. I think it might be the most important passage ever written about Lyndon Johnson and it was uttered by a man who had to work hand-in-glove with this lunatic:
Last night I spoke at the annual dinner of the Century. I sat next to Mac Bundy and we discussed, among other things, the Khrushchev memoirs. I remarked on the curious resemblance between Khrushchev's account of the life around Stalin - the domineering and obsessive dictator, the total boredom of the social occasions revolving around him, the horror when invited to attend and the even greater horror when not invited - and Albert Speer's account of the life around Hitler. Mac said, "When I read Khrushchev, I was reminded of something else in addition - my last days in the White House with LBJ."
I think we know why Bill Moyers has not written his memoirs of working with Lyndon Johnson.The truth is too painful.
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