Black President: Answers to Comments

Thanks Mr. Landers, for your comment, and getting me thinking about ‘crazy  person’ verses ‘planned assassin’ in the political killings I cover in Black President.  I agree that there hasn’t been a smoking gun proof that these were other than maniacs working independently, but when I wrote my book I was following the stories of JFK, Martin Luther King Jr. and Bobby Kennedy from the inside of the minds of the planners.  So a certain logic began developing. Through all the static of conspiracy theories came Oswald’s phrase, I’m just a patsy’ or whatever he exactly said as he was being hauled  away.  All the reading I did on the subject (and movies…) urged me to  notate just how a patsy is used — setting up a person to be at the wrong place at the wrong time, to take the blame for something they were only  indirectly involved in (or lured into for $).  After covering JFK’s assassination, and later in Black President giving myself the task of re-thinking/re-writing the horror of MLK Jr. and Bobby Kennedy’s possible scenerios, I let myself build further on the ‘patsy’ approach, with similar perpetrators (or fellow perpetrators) in the mix.  They could laugh to themselves about just how effectively a patsy-in-place had worked previously, and how THEIR patsy, James Earl Ray, WOULD work.  Following the logic, living the experience from the inside (Ray touches the rifle for fingerprints, a second white Mustang found to be identified at appropriate places, fireman relieved of duty at the station across the street from the fateful motel, etc.), it seemed like a workable plan for assassins. Sirhan Sirhan seemed like another ‘patsy’ personality.  Once a second shooter was dropped into thejob it made sense (please let me know what you think when you read BP!)
The arguement could be, amateurs with dumb luck verses professional trained, sharpshooting assassins.  I’ve seen TV documentaries on ‘US sniper schools’ (surely other countries have these…) which I think I heard turn out 5000 trained shooters a year.  Equipped with the latest rifles, loads and scopes (maybe these adjust automatically/digitally for wind conditions and  atmospheric conditions), these trained assassins are a scary proposition for  the future.  I’ll most likely include this horrid trend in my follow up novel to Black President, entitled Black House, which begins after the US election of 2012!  At any rate, I’ll look forward to reading your Empire Apart and Mr. Ramsay’s Politics & Paranoia!

3 Responses to “Black President: Answers to Comments”

  1. Robin Ramsay Says:

    I was going to explain where the reader should look for detailed info on the MLK and RFK killings when I made myself stop: this is not a debating arena on American history in the sixties. Or is it? It is very striking that these deaths 40 years ago still resonate. But why would they not? The last time there was serious domestic opposition to American imperialism and what we might call military Keynesianism – would you believe it? – the three symbolic/actual/ potential leaders of that opposition got themselves killed, in public; and in shootings which were never seriously investigated. Mind you, the 1960s were only a generation or two away from the ‘Wild West’, the near extermination of the indigenous people and slavery. This is the context into which Obama has inserted himself and it still might be a good idea if he wore a bullet-proof vest under his shirt. I am not persuaded that the era of ‘lone assassins’ is gone for ever and if the smear campaigns the Republicans have already begun running against him look like failing (they have already started arriving in my e-mail In box) and the Republicans decide not to risk rigging a third presidential election, another ‘madman’ might have to be deployed.
    And all you need to know about the American media’s ability to deal with reality is illustrated by the fact that the thoughts (contemporary banalities, really) I have just expressed would not be printed or broadcast by any major American (or British?) media.

  2. Says:

    A very cynical read on the 2008 US election would be that both McCain and Obama have already been (or soon will be…) bought and paid for by the military industrial complex. In Obama’s case, maybe that why he’s decided to go ‘private’ for his donations. Did he have a choice? Does anyone representing his or her party have a choice not to take the contributions/bribes of this shadow government? At any rate, the candidates need the $ that will fuel their slanted TV ads, which promise prosperity and protection against terrorism, etc. from their particular political party. It seems like the terrorism thing has played perfectly into the hands of the secret US military machine – more excuses than ever for sending troops to all hotspots of the world — more excess spending of tax dollars on planes, tanks, rifles, bombs, armour, future weapons technology, security, uniforms, other profitable items. And I would venture a guess that there couldn’t be a more perfect war for the military industrial complex than Iraq. With no end in sight (as long as Republicans win…maybe even with Obama…), relatively low death rate among US forces (compared to Korea or Vietnam), pretty well quaranteed continual instability from tribal interests, and a huge reconstruction windfall afterwards (hello Cheney), not to mention the future oil revenues, they will fight hard to keep it going. If Obama somehow wins — and I’d say look for a relatively ‘long and careful/responsible’ exit — that still adds up to many more months of the looting of US tax dollars. Of course if there is an exit from Iraq look for a new game, some other military action (Iran?) for feeding the insatiable military machine. In Black President I cover a meeting Kennedy had with his five-star military commanders, where they pressed hard for a full-out military attack on Cuba during the missile crisis. After the meeting he told an aid to help him made sure they didn’t start WWIII without him. In any case, the average American just keeps sleepwalking, doing his/her misguided patriotic part, working hard to shovel 15% tax off his/her earnings to fill the shadow-governments coffers. And each new President or President-Elect knows full well not to disregard the fatal Kennedy lesson.

  3. Steve Gillard Says:


    Hello from your friend and fan. Bravo! Can’t wait till publication, so I can read it and keep on building my Rick Schmidt library on how to follow your heart right through the book in hand or the movie on the big screen.

    Success on success to you.

    Steve Gillard

Leave a Reply