The King Assassination Case and the Mueller Probe

Fifty years after the King assassination, Americans still have a hazy view of the House Select Committee on Assassinations’ findings, an ambiguous understanding that may end up characterizing American views on Robert Mueller’s probe as well, Bob Katz explains.

By Bob Katz

What is our official conclusion about the Martin Luther King assassination? Or rather, after all this time, is there an “official” conclusion? The answer to that goes beyond mere historical curiosity. For the murky ambiguities that define this case, coupled with an evident fondness among Americans for simplified, easy-reader versions of wrenching events, could well foreshadow the ultimate outcome of another critical probe 50 years later – Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into alleged collusion between Donald Trump and the Russian government to sway the outcome of Election 2016.

Civil rights leader Andrew Young (L) and others standing on balcony of Lorraine motel pointing in direction of assailant after assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who is lying at their feet. Joseph Louw—The LIFE Images Collection/Getty Images

When it comes to the April 4, 1968 assassination of Dr. King, James Earl Ray is the name that pops up first in the minds of most Americans, as well as in Google searches and history textbooks. An oft-convicted thief, Ray managed to elude a massive international manhunt for two months before being captured in London while trying to board a plane to Brussels. Questions concerning his finances, travels, and possible collusion with others have always surrounded the case, although Ray’s culpability is widely assumed.

The House Select Committee on Assassinations, the most comprehensive formal investigation into King’s murder, and the only one with subpoena power, concluded in 1979 that, “there is a likelihood that James Earl Ray assassinated Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. as a result of a conspiracy.”

Ray never stood trial. Soon after his arrest he pled guilty. Three days later, he attempted to withdraw the plea, a quest that consumed much of the rest of his life. The HSCA report, therefore, stands as the single most authoritative interpretation of the case, and the closest thing we have to a definitive last word. Yet relatively few Americans have heard of the HSCA or, if they have, know much at all about its findings.

On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of King’s assassination, it’s worth asking what’s behind this erasure, this gradual airbrushing of the HSCA findings from the historical record? It could happen again, after all, the virtual deletion from public memory of an official investigation into a crucial national mystery. (Just saying.)

House Select Committee on Assassinations

The HSCA spent two years in the late 1970s investigating the King assassination as well as that of President Kennedy. Funded by Congress and headed by Robert Blakey, a Notre Dame law professor and former Justice Department official with an expertise in organized crime prosecutions, the HSCA had its own professional staff and unprecedented access to police and intelligence agency files.

On August 16, 1978, James Earl Ray was brought to the Rayburn Office Building on Capitol Hill to testify. His appearance, some ten years after the murder that traumatized the country and snuffed out one of America’s leading voices for peace and justice, was intensely anticipated.

Every major news outlet, print and electronic, was present. Rev. Jesse Jackson, who had been at King’s side on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel that fateful spring evening, took what probably counted as a box seat, behind Ray, as close as he could get. I too was there, in the gallery, working with a public interest group that monitored the hearings.

Flanked by seven U.S. Marshalls, Ray entered the hearing room to stone silence as spectators and media were commanded to remain seated and stationary. He calmly raised his right hand to take the oath, this unassuming figure already a peer of John Wilkes Booth and Lee Harvey Oswald in the pantheon of American villains. Seeing Ray in person was like seeing a ghost.

But this ghost was stripped of all standard trappings of creepiness. There was no eerie musical soundtrack accompanying his entrance. He wore a striped tie with a blue-green checkered sport coat that might have made a positive impression on a Missouri parole board in the 1950s. His dark hair was combed in a wave and tapered above the ears to reveal graying sideburns. With darting eyes and a tight-lipped grimness, he appeared just handsome enough to have landed an audition for the role of a petty burglar in a “Law & Order” episode.

Peppered with questions from the committee chair, Louis Stokes of Ohio, Ray nervously gave answers with varying degrees of forthrightness concerning his racial animus (he professed none and investigators also found little evidence of this); his finances while on the run (smuggling and odd jobs were his explanation – the HSCA believed Ray and one of his brothers robbed an Alton, IL bank of $27,000 in July, 1967); and accomplices (Ray insisted that a blond Latino named “Raoul” directed much of his activity, including the purchase of a rifle and a road trip that brought him to Memphis on April 3 – investigators believed Ray’s brothers John and Jerry, both petty criminals, assisted him).

It was, alas, no ghost story. There was no “aha!” moment of reckoning, no Hollywood ending.

A Disappointingly Obscure Scoundrel

Regarding its investigation of a conspiracy, the HSCA explicitly implicated a St. Louis lawyer named John Sutherland who’d been active in such segregationist groups as the St. Louis Citizens Council, the Southern States Industrial Council, and the American Independent Party of George Wallace. Within these networks, Sutherland was reported to have circulated a “serious” offer to have King killed, coupled with the promise of a $50,000 reward.

Sutherland, who died in 1970 and was never interrogated, proved a disappointingly obscure scoundrel for story-telling purposes. And the HSCA, commendably circumspect, employed language that was hardly meant to excite headlines:

“James Earl Ray may simply have been aware of the offer and acted with a general expectation of payment after the assassination; or he may have acted, not only with an awareness of the offer, but also after reaching a specific agreement, either directly or through one or both brothers, with … Sutherland. The legal consequences of the alternative possibilities are, of course, different. Without a specific agreement with the Sutherland group, the conspiracy that eventuated in Dr. King’s death would extend only to Ray and his brother(s); with a specific agreement, the conspiracy would also encompass Sutherland and his group.”

The upshot: no riveting narrative arc, no snappy logline. The HSCA findings have thus been consigned to history’s dustbin, invisible to all but scholars and buffs, doomed by poor ratings. It was a classic show biz failure, a failure to recognize that its attention-deficit audience – we the people – prefers explanations that are neatly wrapped and sound-bite succinct.

Obviously the HSCA was handicapped by strict adherence to the known facts, which turned out to be convoluted and puzzling. No scriptwriter with blockbuster dreams would ever want to be so confined. “Inspired by a true story,” whatever that means, is where the real action is.

Which brings us to the Mueller probe. It may yet yield high-profile trials for dastardly offenses, and wouldn’t that be nice. Absent an A-list conviction, the Mueller investigation seems susceptible to the same factors that effectively sidelined the King findings. Too many confounding footnotes, too many loose threads, and an assortment of two-bit bad guys standing in, but for who?

All available box office evidence suggests that Americans crave political dramas that are sharply plotted, easy to follow and seamlessly resolved. The ambiguous kind? Not so much. The truth, in the long run, may not be an ideal vehicle for maximizing audience share.

If in the end Mueller demonstrates only that vile crimes were perpetrated with craven or treasonous intent by despicable actors plausibly though not provably affiliated with the White House, what will be the popular understanding of the Trump-Russia-election saga ten years, twenty years from now? Especially when a far less complicated account – NO COLLUSION! – gets blasted from the loudest megaphone known to humankind.

Bob Katz was involved in monitoring the HSCA investigation and was present for James Earl Ray’s testimony. He is the author of several books and his writing has appeared in the New York Times, Boston Globe, Chicago Tribune, as well as Consortium News. His most recent book is The Whistleblower: Rooting for the Ref in the High-Stakes World of College Basketball (see )

97 comments for “The King Assassination Case and the Mueller Probe

  1. April 4, 2018 at 14:57

    Read “The Plot to Kill King” by William F. Pepper

  2. hyperbola
    April 3, 2018 at 14:31

    A summary of the civil trial (a jury concluded that the US government killed MLK) can be found here.

    Martin Luther King assassinated by US Govt: King Family civil trial verdict

    The role of “our” mainstream media in manipulating Americans with cradle-to-grave propaganda is nicely exposed by this (from the article).

    “”…. US corporate media did not cover the civil trial, interview the King family, and textbooks omit this information. This is crucial evidence of a controlled corporate media rejecting coverage of a game-changing story. Journalist and author, James Douglass:

    “I can hardly believe the fact that, apart from the courtroom participants, only Memphis TV reporter Wendell Stacy and I attended from beginning to end this historic three-and-one-half week trial. Because of journalistic neglect scarcely anyone else in this land of ours even knows what went on in it. After critical testimony was given in the trial’s second week before an almost empty gallery, Barbara Reis, U.S. correspondent for the Lisbon daily Publico who was there several days, turned to me and said, ‘Everything in the U.S. is the trial of the century. O.J. Simpson’s trial was the trial of the century. Clinton’s trial was the trial of the century. But this is the trial of the century, and who’s here?’ ”

    For comparison, please consider the media coverage of O.J. Simpson’s trials:…. “”

  3. Bjjorn Jensen
    April 1, 2018 at 04:19

    How amazing Mr Katz that you were there…

    There was this:

    Then this:

    And this:

    Now this:

    I guess sometimes we will just never know.

    That just may be the case with the probe – though disappointing to most people who want something- anything done about Trump, the final possible Mueller outcome might only be: lots of dodgy deals, borderline criminality, unethical behaviour up the wazoo and a vast cast of sketchy people, but the Don comes out of it unscathed. Be careful what you wish for because you could be wrong and the Don could even get voted in for another four years. Ugh – nightmare revisited.

  4. Mastapha Mond
    March 31, 2018 at 09:16

    This author has it all wrong. The deep state killed Dr. King. The FBI monitored his every move, spied on him constantly and even sent him a letter making implicit death threats and asking him to commit suicide. This is all public record in the Church Committee Reports.

  5. March 31, 2018 at 03:24

    For pete’s sake, Mr Katz, you make zero mention of Dr. William Pepper’s thorough painstaking inquiry into the murder from which a jury found the feds guilty. The King family is openly respectful and admiring of this Pepper effort and it’s finding. You can’t possibly be ignorant of this. Please explain why you ignore it.

  6. duncan
    March 30, 2018 at 22:43

    how is it possible that you are not acqainted with the civil trial that found conspiracy involving memphis police and others ?

  7. March 30, 2018 at 18:24

    G’Day All,

    A heads up from Down Under on the assassination of Martin Luther King. On April 17 Phil Nelson will be publishing his new book — Who REALLY Killed Martin Luther King Jr.? The Case Against Lyndon B. Johnson and J. Edgar Hoover. Pre-orders can be placed for it via the link below.

    As the title suggests, he really gets down to the heart of the matter. The book will answer many of the questions and concerns folks have expressed herein about the assassination, and then some. How do I know this? I’ve had a copy of Nelson’s book now for about six weeks. I’ve been posting extracts from it on both my Facebook pages, and I am as we speak prepping an article based on my reading. This will appear on Consortium News on April 4, the 50th Anniversary of the assassination, and on other sites around the same time. For those who wish to see those extracts my Facebook link is included below.

    All I will say at the moment is this. Phil has asked me to write a ‘dust cover’ comment for the book, and we also asked Dr William Pepper and John Kiriakou to read the book in question and offer comments for said dust cover. This is what we all had to say, and it should give folks herein a flavour of what to expect:

    — Phillip Nelson, who has generously complimented my work on the King assassination, has also provided us with some valuable missing historical information about the complicated actions of Lyndon Johnson in the context of events in the 1960’s. I have long believed the detailed information given to me by my friend, Madeleine Brown, [LBJ’s mistress] about his knowing involvement and collusion in the assassination of JFK. Phillip Nelson’s research about Johnson’s collaboration and his support of the profoundly illegal and evil, public actions of J. Edgar Hoover fills in many blanks and is a highly valuable historical contribution. I urge, and hope, that this work will be widely read.’

    Dr. William F. Pepper, Author, The Plot to Kill King

    — I picked up this book with more than a little skepticism. Having been a voracious consumer of JFK and RFK assassination books, I thought I’d give Phil Nelson’s Who Really Killed Martin Luther King, Jr.?”: The Case Against Lyndon B. Johnson and J. Edgar Hoover a try. I had already read most of the books about MLK’s killing that Nelson cites in this work. And after all that, I had come to the conclusion that James Earl Ray had killed King. With the Kennedys a conspiracy is easier [to accept?]: It was the mafia, the CIA, Lyndon Johnson, the Russians, the Cubans, etc. [James Earl] Ray [‘s guilt] seemed to me to be more clear cut. He was caught easily, he confessed, and his retraction of his confession seemed convenient and revisionist to me. I frankly put it out of my mind. Until this book.

    Phil Nelson goes to the trouble that so many other authors do not of using primary source and contemporaneous documents. Like Peter Janney’s “Mary’s Mosaic,” he makes an argument that is both compelling and very difficult to refute. How do you argue against facts? None of us want to think the worst of our government and our leaders. But sometimes we should. Sometimes a sociopath will slip through the cracks. And sometimes those sociopaths become the director of the FBI or the President of the United States. The American people have a right to know the facts of our own history. We have the right to know who killed Martin Luther King, Jr. We have a right to know if our government was involved. If it was, we have Phil Nelson to thank for shining some light on that awful crime.

    John Kiriakou is a former CIA officer and former senior investigator for the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. He served two years in prison after blowing the whistle on the CIA’s torture program.

    — Whether it’s the JFK assassination or the 1967 attack by Israeli Defence Forces on the USS Liberty, by building on the important work of other authors, Phil Nelson has earned himself a well deserved reputation as a discerning seeker and curator of the real truth behind these seminal events in U.S. history. His new book on the 1968 assassination of Dr Martin Luther King is sure to enhance that reputation. A timely update on the circumstances surrounding his death, and a welcome corrective to the official narrative, Nelson’s book is an indispensable read in this the 50th anniversary of his murder.

    Greg Maybury, Editor/Publisher,

    Greg Maybury,
    Perth, Western Australia

    • Bob Van Noy
      March 31, 2018 at 18:32

      Thank you, thank you, thank you Greg Maybury! I can hardly wait for your article and I’m especially happy that it will be published here. Nat… THANKS.

    • Bob Van Noy
      March 31, 2018 at 19:01

      “the profoundly illegal and evil, public actions of J. Edgar Hoover fills in many blanks and is a highly valuable historical contribution.”
      Dr. William F. Pepper

      I’ve been waiting to hear that for many years. Thank you…

  8. Mathew Neville
    March 30, 2018 at 17:47
  9. We'll never know
    March 30, 2018 at 09:34

    It’s that time of year – dream up some vaguely sinister story to try and distract people from the well-known open-source facts. All this one needs is the ritual Mockingbird incantation, ‘We’ll never know.’ Here’s what Katz is keeping from you.

    There’s nothing convoluted or puzzling about the facts. The US government killed King.

    • Mild-ly - Facetious
      March 30, 2018 at 13:53

      Thank You, We’ll never know

      … As Americans, we’ll never know because, attitudinally, we don’t care to know – or as the adage states, “Ignorance Is Bliss”.

      The Government that Honors Dr. Martin Luther King with a National Holiday Killed Him
      By Edward Curtin
      December 10, 2016

      A review of The Plot to Kill King by William Pepper, the culminating book in a trilogy by the preeminent authority on the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr.

      Very few Americans are aware of the truth behind the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Few books have been written about it, unlike other significant assassinations, especially JFK’s. For almost fifty years there has been a media blackout supported by government deception to hide the truth. And few people, in a massive act of self-deception, have chosen to question the absurd official explanation, choosing, rather, to embrace a mythic fabrication intended to sugarcoat the bitter fruit that has resulted from the murder of the one man capable of leading a mass movement for revolutionary change in the United States. Today we are eating the fruit of our denial.

      In order to comprehend the significance of this extraordinary book, it is first necessary to dispel a widely accepted falsehood about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. William Pepper does that on the first page.

      To understand his death, it is essential to realize that although he is popularly depicted and perceived as a civil rights leader, he was much more than that. A non-violent revolutionary, he personified the most powerful force for the long-overdue social, political, and economic reconstruction of the nation.
      In other words, Martin Luther King was a transmitter of a non-violent spiritual and political energy so plenipotent that his very existence was a threat to an established order based on violence, racism, and economic exploitation. He was a very dangerous man.

      Revolutionaries are, of course, anathema to the power elites who, with all their might, resist such rebels’ efforts to transform society. If they can’t buy them off, they knock them off. Forty-eight years after King’s assassination, the causes he fought for—civil rights, the end to U.S. wars of aggression, and economic justice for all—remain not only unfulfilled, but have worsened in so many respects. And King’s message has been enervated by the sly trick of giving him a national holiday and urging Americans to make it “a day of service.” Needless to say, such service does not include non-violent war resistance or protesting a decadent system of economic injustice.

      Because MLK repeatedly called the United States the “greatest purveyor of violence on earth,” he was universally condemned by the mass media and government that later—once he was long and safely dead—praised him to the heavens. This has continued to the present day of historical amnesia.

      The Plot to Kill King; The Truth Behind The Assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. But William Pepper resurrects the revolutionary MLK, and in doing so shows in striking detail why elements within the U.S. government executed him. After reading this book, no fair-minded reader can reach any other conclusion. The Plot to Kill King, the culminating volume of a trilogy that Pepper has written on the assassination, consists of slightly less text than supporting documentation in its appendices, which include numerous depositions and interviews that buttress Pepper’s thesis on the why and how of this horrible murder. It demands a close reading that should put to rest any pseudo-debates about the essentials of the case.

      Pepper, an attorney who represented the King family in the 1999 trial that found U.S. officials of the federal (in particular, the FBI and Army Intelligence), state, and local governments responsible for King’s assassination, has worked on the King case since 1977. He met MLK in 1967, after King had read Pepper’s Ramparts’ magazine article, “The Children of Vietnam,” that exposed the hideous effects of U.S. napalm and white phosphorous bombing on young and old Vietnamese innocents. The text and photos of that article reduced King to tears and were instrumental in his increased opposition to the war against Vietnam as articulated in his dramatic Riverside Church speech (“Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break Silence”) on April 4, 1967, one year to the day before his execution in Memphis. That speech, in which King so powerfully and publicly linked the war with racism and economic exploitation, foretold his death at the hands of the perpetrators of those abominations.

      MORE :

  10. jimbo
    March 30, 2018 at 05:48

    Speaking of patsies, you want to know who the patsies are? From the Skirpal poisoning to the Lincoln assassination, the patsies are anyone who buys the bullshit narratives. Psst, hey, Homer, we wants for youse to believe this. Duh, okay Mr. Authority man. I can show them patterns, coincidences, alternative reports and anomalies up the ying yang and they don’t budge. They stick to whatever the TV told them. It’s their closed minds which aid and abet the murder, war and corruption. They have been accessories to these crimes from the far past, to today and – as Mr Authority man knows – on into the future.

    • E. Leete
      March 30, 2018 at 09:50

      Homer Simpson is smarter than most people. He is at least capable of having “D’oh!” moments, when he suddenly realizes how wrong he has been getting his thinking.

      Outside the cartoon world, even the supposedly “woke” people are still daily despising and deriding wealthpower giants for their lack of a single scruple while simultaneously epically failing to campaign for putting an end to the idea to dangle the carrot of unlimited fortunes of front of humans. People expect those with no scruples to use precisely that lack of scruples to resist the greatest temptation.

      So who are the crazy ones, eh?

      And speaking once again of overpower-overwealth versus underpower-underwealth it’s another bloodbath on the Gaza border again this morning. Israeli army snipers are picking off demonstrators who want to return to their stolen homes. I wish you all could see my facebook page: you’d throw up.

      Maybe next time around Mother Nature will rebuild the human brain from the ground up, instead of just slapping a thin layer of cortex over the reptile remnants and saying “whee! here we go!”

  11. Concerned Citizen
    March 29, 2018 at 22:17

    In an otherwise decent article, Mr. Katz makes a critical error. Jesse Jackson was NOT on the balcony with King when Ray fired his rifle. Jackson tried to wave a bloody T-shirt, but anyone who knows Rev. Jackson is aware of some elements if his personal style.

    I had the distinct privilege to meet and speak with Louis Stokes in the late 1970s after the report was issued. He was speaking at Ohio University where I was in grad school. Stokes made it clear that we would never know the whole truth about the assassinations of JFK, King and RFK.

    • Charles Watkins
      March 30, 2018 at 12:50

      Pepper has some dark thoughts about Jackson. Goes beyond exploiting King’s death.

  12. glitch
    March 29, 2018 at 21:23

    Best commentariat on the net.

  13. March 29, 2018 at 20:14

    If I’m not mistaken, King’s family won a civil suit that determined that the U.S. government was responsible for King’s death, not James Earl Ray.

    • Joe Tedesky
      March 29, 2018 at 22:34

      Natylie your article on the Skirpal poisoning is one of the best I’ve read. I think the Salisbury fiasco is death to Russia by a thousand pin pricks, as this poisoning scheme in Salisbury is a railroad spike. I also think that Theresa May is strongly goating Putin, for she knows that he knows the truth. Just like everything else, as is this Mueller travesty, that with leadership such as what we have witnessed amongst our government leaders that it only lends to make one wonder to what the underlings are thinking of what their bosses are up to. In fact when you come to think of it the Mueller show and the Theresa May hit parade all have Russia at the center of it… & they call me a conspiracy theorist, ha, the reality now is the conspiracy. Joe

  14. Jeff
    March 29, 2018 at 18:47

    Personally, I think that the Mueller probe is much more akin to Ken Starr’s whitewater probe than the King assassination probe. King’s assassination probe was straight forward regardless of any complexities. We habeas corpus. In both the Whitewater case and the Mueller probe you don’t really have a corpus. It’s not as simple as a dead body. Ken Starr couldn’t get squat but did manage to jail a few folks as collateral damage but wasn’t able to get anything on Slick Willie until Clinton lied about taking advantage of Monica Lewinsky. Why Clinton would be so reckless as to start an affair with Lewinsky is beyond me but it’s equally beyond me what Clinton’s relationship with Lewinsky had to do with the Whitewater affair. But Ken Starr ran on for 6-7 years and blew through millions of dollars to discover that Clinton was having it off with Lewinsky and didn’t want to admit it.

    Mueller’s been going on for a year now and he’s managed to catch a bunch of Republican operatives being Republican operatives and having an illegally undeclared job with the Ukrainian government. But consider what that means already. Obama slapped sanctions on Russia for “meddling” in our election. On no evidence. And the jobs that the Republican’s ops had had nothing to do with the 2016 election. And the great DNC hack wasn’t (although the only way to really know is for Assange to tell us who gave him the data). But now we have the thirteen trolls a-tweeting from three different companies in St. Petersburg. None of them a part of the Russian government. But I expect Mueller to continue investigating until either he produces a really salacious report or we change governments.

  15. March 29, 2018 at 17:55

    How can you write on King’s Assassination without mentioning the name of William Pepper?

    Pepper brought the case to court and the case was adjudicated. It clearly showed the role of the government in his assassination. Do you not know this?

    I can understand a DemocracyNow! piece on MLK without mention of Pepper, but I would expect more from

  16. Den Lille Abe
    March 29, 2018 at 17:49

    It is circumspect that conspiracy theories thrive mainly in the US. Crimes elsewhere are almost always straightforward and usually solved with no bruhaha. Apart from the “suicides” of the Bader Meinhoff gang, no many mysteries.
    But the US is different. Of course it is also the country where the “Northwood” document has been penned. If a country’s top people can seriously think of murdering its own citizens, that nation has no moral right anymore. It never had, actually.
    Lincoln and FDR are not really enough.
    We are supposed to believe the most unbelievable things. The Skripal case is just the last in a long row of bizarre incidents. The FSB, formerly the KGB or NKVD dont screw up. They taught the Yugoslavian UDBA, and they were no joke.
    Skripal was of no value anymore, yes as a distraction.

  17. cmp
    March 29, 2018 at 15:51

    Robert Swan Mueller the III was appointed as the FBI Director from Sept 4, 2001, (just one week before the 9/11 attacks). He then served as the acting Director until Sept 4, 2013.

    But, let’s reflect for a moment on the greatest(?) monetary theft in human history. You know, when Bob was head of the FBI.

    These were the Members of the: The Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission
    * Phil Angelides Chairman
    * Hon. Bill Thomas Vice Chairman
    * Brooksley Born Commissioner
    * Byron S. Georgiou Commissioner
    * Bob Graham Commissioner
    * Keith Hennessey Commissioner
    * Douglas Holtz-Eakin Commissioner
    * Heather H. Murren, CFA Commissioner
    * John W. Thompson Commissioner
    * Peter J. Wallison Commissioner

    A search for: (… …) will take you the “The Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission” full report.
    But here are some summary excerpts..:
    ~ “The Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission was created to “examine the causes, domestic and global, of the current financial and economic crisis in the United States.” The Commission was established as part of the Fraud Enforcement and Recovery Act (Public Law 111-21) passed by Congress and signed by the President in May 2009. The Commission’s statutory instructions set out 22 specific topics for inquiry and called for the examination of the collapse of major financial institutions that failed or would have failed if not for exceptional assistance from the government.

    On January 27, 2011 the Commission delivered its report to the President, Congress and the American people. The operations of the Commission will conclude on February 13, 2011.

    As this report goes to print, there are more than 26 million Americans who are out of work, cannot find full-time work, or have given up looking for work. About four million families have lost their homes to foreclosure and another four and a half million have slipped into the foreclosure process or are seriously behind on their mortgage payments. Nearly $11 trillion in household wealth has vanished, with retirement accounts and life savings swept away. Businesses, large and small, have felt the sting of a deep recession. There is much anger about what has transpired, and justifiably so. Many people who abided by all the rules now find themselves out of work and uncertain about their future prospects. The collateral damage of this crisis has been real people and real communities. The impacts of this crisis are likely to be felt for a generation. And the nation faces no easy path to renewed economic strength.

    The financial system we examined bears little resemblance to that of our parents’ generation. The changes in the past three decades alone have been remarkable. From 1978 to 2007, the amount of debt held by the financial sector soared from $3 trillion to $36 trillion, more than doubling as a share of gross domestic product. The very nature of many Wall Street firms changed—from relatively staid private partnerships to publicly traded corporations taking greater and more diverse kinds of risks. By 2005, the 10 largest U.S. commercial banks held 55% of the industry’s assets, more than double the level held in 1990. On the eve of the crisis in 2006, financial sector profits constituted 27% of all corporate profits in the United States, up from 15% in 1980. Understanding this transformation has been critical to the Commission’s analysis.

    • We conclude this financial crisis was avoidable.
    • We conclude widespread failures in financial regulation and supervision proved devastating to the stability of the nation’s financial markets.
    • We conclude dramatic failures of corporate governance and risk management at many systemically important financial institutions were a key cause of this crisis.
    • We conclude a combination of excessive borrowing, risky investments, and lack of transparency put the financial system on a collision course with crisis.
    • We conclude the government was ill prepared for the crisis, and its inconsistent response added to the uncertainty and panic in the financial markets.
    • We conclude there was a systemic breakdown in accountability and ethics.
    • We conclude collapsing mortgage-lending standards and the mortgage securitization pipeline lit and spread the flame of contagion and crisis.
    • We conclude over-the-counter derivatives contributed significantly to this crisis.
    • We conclude the failures of credit rating agencies were essential cogs in the wheel of financial destruction.

    WHEN THIS COMMISSION began its work 18 months ago, some imagined that the events of 2008 and their consequences would be well behind us by the time we issued this report. Yet more than two years after the federal government intervened in an unprecedented manner in our financial markets, our country finds itself still grappling with the after effects of the calamity. Our financial system is, in many respects, still unchanged from what existed on the eve of the crisis. Indeed, in the wake of the crisis, the U.S. financial sector is now more concentrated than ever in the hands of a few large, systemically significant institutions. “~
    ~” .. The Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission, in its final report, used variants of the word “fraud” 157 times in describing what led to the crisis of 2008, concluding that there was a “systemic breakdown,” not just in accountability, but also in ethical behavior.

    The commission found, their were signs of fraud everywhere to be seen. The number of reports of suspected mortgage fraud had risen twenty-fold between 1996 and 2005 and then doubled again in the next four years. As early as 2004, FBI Assistant Director Chris Swecker was publicly warning of the “pervasive problem” of mortgage fraud, driven by the voracious demand for mortgage-backed securities.. “~

    Now, just how many Indictments and Convictions concerning the Financial Collapse did Mr. Robert Swan Mueller the III, assist the American People with?

    .. And for tonight’s entertainment on CNN:
    It will be BIG Bob Mueller on the guitar, along with his singing sidekick Clapper playing the organ..

    J. Edgar and Allen Dulles – eat your hearts out…

    • E. Leete
      March 29, 2018 at 16:44

      awesome contribution. please can I steal that and pass it around, cmp?

      The working people’s situation was and is so desperate that the powers that be manufactured 2 deliverer figures in succession for the masses, to keep them toiling with faith devoid of violence while $16 trillion got funneled to the banksters the first time and it’s ripe to happen again. We are now part of the anthropological Cargo Cult that waits for irrational money to drop from the sky to resolve long term internal contradictions and limits of unfettered unregulated capitalism. Can somebody explain to me who in their right mind still does not understand the pathological acquisitor mentality that, empowered by software and computer will take acquisition for the sake of acquisition to its apocalyptic chaos state? Think of it as a mass hallucination of pathological economic gluttony by narcissistic acquisitors who are convinced that if they crash the whole system again, they can pick it up for nothing. This is acquisitor nirvana. The wealthpowerful have accomplished their mission, and all they now need is security and gated compounds while the chaos renders all of us collateral damage.

      These guys play with our lives as if humanity is a video game.

      “The patience of the oppressed has always been the most inexplicable, as well as probably the most important, fact in all history.” -Author Amos Elon from The Pity of it All

      • cmp
        March 29, 2018 at 17:30

        Hey, E. Leete!
        Your contributions are actually far superior to mine!!

        So, let me steal your post. .. And, I of course will sweeten the deal.

        This is my recipe for a simple Marinara Sauce that I first made over 40 years ago.
        6 Tablespoons of Olive Oil
        1/4 Cup of Butter
        3 Large Garlic Cloves
        16 Fresh Parsley Sprigs (Leaves Only)
        1/2 Teasp of Freshly Ground Pepper
        1/2 Teaspoon of Salt
        6 Cups of Peeled Plum Tomatoes (Drained)
        1 Tablespoon of Oregano
        8 Anchovy Filets (Chopped)
        2 Heaping Tablespoons of Tomato Paste

        Combine the olive oil and butter in a sauce pan and heat. Chop garlic and parsley together and add to the pan. Cook slowly for 5 minutes, and then add salt and pepper. Drain the tomatoes and chop the solids. Add the chop tomatoes and the oregano to the sauce and cook slowly for 30 min. Add the anchovies and tomato paste, stir well and remove from the heat. Taste for salt and add some if necessary, but remember, the anchovies will contain salt; as well. Serve over macaroni, spaghetti, green beans, hard cooked or scrambled eggs. Makes about 5 cups.

        Now, I hope we can call it an even swap.
        E. Leete, TY,

        • E. Leete
          March 29, 2018 at 18:37

          gosh! you’re being way too kind, cmp – keep it up! (teehee) Yum on the recipe – thanks! I make my own salad dressing from olive oil and red wine vinegar and it will be a pasta feast this weekend at my house! I have to tell you I had a teacher who always inserted talk about foods as a strategy while we were deep-studying the book Finnegans Wake, which itself has food mentions all over the place – I think Joyce thought to feed his reader snacks thru an incredibly intensive journey.

          anyways, for being so nice to me you get this bonus post I wrote on my fb page today:

          Money is symbolic wealth – money is a symbol of the substantial wealth. The substantial wealth is the goods and services we sacrifice our time to produce and provide. Since only work produces wealth only work deserves to get pay (with the exception being that every human has a birthright to one nth of the natural wealth where n=the population) (the land, minerals, oil, ocean views, etc – the original wealth mother nature gave to all is the natural wealth), so since land is all owned now, people are rightly to be compensated (in addition to pay for their hours worked) for the birthright that has been stolen off everyone born after all land became owned.

          Money is a ticket good for redeeming for a variety of goods and services. Division of labor begat the neccessity to trade, and what is supposed to happen is each person gets out of the social pool of wealth the same amount of goods and services that his or her own work contributed to that pool – no more and no less. Anything other than this is theft of somebody else’s time. Theft is injustice whether it is legal or not. Injustice drives violence. To let myriad legal thefts concentrate wealth is to make democracy impossible because money is power. duh, big fat duh.

          Mother nature has set a limit on how much anybody living in a human body can work over a lifetime. But humans have foolishly destroyed their happiness and thrown away their chance to have a future by tolerating an economic dystem where withdrawals from the finite pool of wealth are unlimited. Having unlimited withdrawals for what is strictly limited contribution has created the ratio of overpay overpower to underpay underpower that is killing us all and this pretty planet. We will either get jiggy with the big picture of our reality, turn to justice and obey her, rid ourselves of the insanely self-harming idea to allow unlimited fortunes on planet earth, install mechanisms to correct for the way market forces ceaselessly and automatically cause wealth to drift from its proper earner-owner to somebody getting it for no work done, or we will succumb to the ever-nastier results of having the next and the next and the next wealthpower giants ad infinitum until the egregious injustice sets off the last bomb.

          Pay justice or oblivion. Pay justice or autogenocide, humans. You are down to those 2 choices and you must choose soon or it’s history on repeat on steroids kaboom. Place your bets. And if you still aren’t sure that only work creates the substantial wealth, now is the time to take a dollar bill out of your wallet and command it to fix you a sandwich.

          Good luck, humanity – I hope you choose wisely.

          • backwardsevolution
            March 30, 2018 at 01:09

            E. Leete – “Since only work produces wealth, only work deserves to get pay. […] Division of labor begat the necessity to trade, and what is supposed to happen is each person gets out of the social pool of wealth the same amount of goods and services that his or her own work contributed to that pool – no more and no less. Anything other than this is theft of somebody else’s time.”

            Something for nothing, in other words. Great inequality occurs when this happens.

            cmp – excellent post. Eric Holder was well chosen as the Attorney-General. He was a white-collar defense attorney before he became the A.G., and he’s now back at the same Washington, D.C. law firm again. None of these elite bankers went to jail under Eric Holder or Obama. Our society has been financialized, and, as E. Leete says, people who never worked at all for the money they’ve gotten, who committed fraud, have been handsomely rewarded. Money was dumped into elite laps from on high, and all they had to do was run with it.

      • E. Leete
        March 29, 2018 at 17:36

        Wall Street on Parade – Pam and Russ Martens – for those who don’t yet know of them, you should sign up for their free newsletter – have a gander at the headlines under ‘recent posts’ down the left side of the page – we cannot stop all this terrible harm piecemeal

        at BAR today I read this line: “Fredrick Jameson reminds us of the lesson that these young people will have to learn that they will not learn from their liberal benefactors: “The lesson is this, and it is a lesson about systems: one cannot change anything without changing everything.”

        we really are at the point of choosing between murdering the idea to have wealthpower giants on this planet or committing autogenocide

    • Clooney's Gerbil
      March 29, 2018 at 22:22

      It’s all part of the Grand Chess Board. Nothing is accidental, and they’re ten moves ahead. “We’re an empire now and we make our own reality.” Do you honestly think “fire” brought down the twin towers?

  18. Oz
    March 29, 2018 at 14:49

    This article obscures something very important, which is that the FBI played a central and very dirty role in both affairs.

  19. March 29, 2018 at 14:02

    Given the lack of evidence proving ANY interference by Russia in the 2016 election, and the wealth thereof suggesting a half-arsed attempt by various actors including the Clinton campaign, U.S. intelligence agencies, and the D.N.C. to undo the results or at least hinder Caligula Drumpf’s overtures of détente with a nuclear power now boasting of W.M.D. parity with America, it is highly doubtful that the entire Mueller investigation will be anything but a footnote in history of how the Democrats imploded and faded into oblivion while their Republican buddies limped along for a while longer, before the United States devolved into open dictatorship (as opposed to the covert one we’ve been under since 2000).

    • E. Leete
      March 29, 2018 at 14:18

      Again, Amen. If any actual truth or justice comes from any Mueller investigation EVER, I’ll eat Henry Kissinger’s underwear on live tee vee while juggling bronze busts of the Dulles brothers.

      Please forgive the following off topic, but are Consortium News writers and readers aware that Israel is planning another massacre of Gazans starting tomorrow????

      Middle East Monitor

      March 29, 2018 at 16:05

      Slight correction: the covert U.S. dictatorship started on November 22, 1963 in Dallas, Texas.

      • March 29, 2018 at 17:56

        Truman made it clear it began on July 26, 1947 when he signed the National Security Act of 1947 that set up the CIA. He said in the Sixties it was a mistake. The mistake was making it more than a collection of intelligence, but adding covert action to it.

        This is the second worst result of the coup at the 1944 Democratic Convention that removed Henry Wallace from the ticket and put the well meaning, but easily manipulated, Truman on it instead.

        The worst result happened on August 6 & 9, 1945.

        • Gregory Herr
          March 29, 2018 at 21:43

          This clip covers the ’44 Convention:

        • Joe Tedesky
          March 29, 2018 at 21:56

          Florida’s Representative of the 14th district Claude Pepper was within a few feet and a couple seconds away from putting Wallace up for the nomination when he was interrupted by Truman’s supporters putting in Harry’s name first… talk about pivotal is undervaluing this moment by a nearly 3 generations of Americans & the Planet and still counting.

  20. Bob In Portland
    March 29, 2018 at 13:15

    If you have followed Robert Mueller’s career, he seems to have investigated without finding the puppet strings. As the newly appointed head of the FBI Mueller investigated 9/11 without noticing the Saudis or the CIA. For example, while Mo Atta and another hijacker matriculated in flying airliners into buildings in Sarasota at Huffman Aviation, one of Huffman’s planes was busted at Orlando International with 43 pounds of heroin. Everyone walked. No one was charged with smuggling. Huffman Aviation’s airliner side never had a scheduled flight. And the airliners who flew all those Saudis out of the US when all other flights were grounded? Nothing to see there. Nor was there anything to see regarding Mo Atta’s wanderings across Europe nor his job at a BND (German intelligence) front company in Frankfurt.

    Before 9/11, Mueller prosecuted Manuel Noriega. In doing so he didn’t see the many elaborate an illegal CIA operations running through Panama, the money-laundering, the gun-running and the drug smuggling, most of which were touched by the Iran-contra. Prior to that he prosecuted what was nicknamed the “drug tug” case, yet another drug importation scheme in the SF Bay Area and made sure to avoid the tentacles of other criminal activities that emanated from the people involved, or where those tentacles went. Mueller apparently knew to stay away from anything connected to Iran-contra, including the CIA.

    Between the “drug tug” and Noriega cases, he oversaw the Pan Am 103 case, aka, Lockerbie. He steered the case away from the original suspects, a Palestinian bomb-making group in Frankfurt and Monzer al-Kassar, at the time an arms supplier for Iran-contra and the biggest importer of heroin into the US. He also ignored the “McKee Team”, a joint group of five intelligence officers coming back to the US from Beruit, allegedly against orders, who all died over Lockerbie.

    There are other cases with “national security” connections that he was involved with.

    In short, whatever Mueller eventually finds he won’t find the CIA.

    Oh, and in 1966 he married into the CIA. His wife’s grandfather was Charles Cabell, the second in command who was fired by JFK after the Bay of Pigs. Her grand-uncle was the mayor of Dallas at the time of JFK’s assassination.

    A lot of liberals hold up Mueller as “the enemy of the enemy” when it comes to the Trump investigation, but the credit he deserves is for covering up the fingerprints of the CIA in a lifetime’s worth of national crimes.

    • Bob Van Noy
      March 29, 2018 at 13:58

      Thank you Bob In Portland, I was unaware of the Cabell link. The Cabell Brothers were “Up To Their Necks” complicit in JFK’s Assassination. There is much there to look into.

      • Joe Tedesky
        March 29, 2018 at 21:46

        Bob I’ve given this a lot of thought, that if you were to organize a hit on a high value subject you would pull from every corner that high value subject had in the way of enemies… I mean it just makes sense. It would be like combing the world globally to pick and choose your trigger men/women. Someway with choosing a patsy this would be the process also. See who on the patsy list geographically fits the scenario you are setting, may be part of the criteria as well.

        In the case of JFK’s assassination you know this Bob the list is long; the Mafia, the Cuban Nationals, the Cabal Brothers, Dulles, the Fed, the CIA with cover up help from the FBI (the FBI gets King), HL Hunt & Clint Murchison big oil/big business & the MIC….. but what I’m saying is to form a executions squad with plenty of plausible deniability you may comb the panorama of coalition members to see to who at what time and to where all this may be best placed in order to pull off this grand scheme…. is all I’m saying.

        Bob take care. Joe

        • Bob Van Noy
          March 29, 2018 at 22:34

          Actually Joe I think we’ll be hearing much more new information in just the next several days. I did a review of William Pepper’s book thanking him for the several hundred pages of data that he published with it, realizing that it would provide a solid platform for more research, like the revelation here about the Cabell Brothers and Mr. Mueller here today. This is going to be a significant year just as 1968 was. Hold on to your hat.

          Reading now: “Manifest Destiny, Democracy as Cognative Dissonance” by F. William Engdahl, it’s really important.

          As always, Thank You Joe.

          • March 31, 2018 at 01:05

            G’Day Joe and Bob,

            If you go to my Facebook page you will see I’ve been posting in recent weeks extracts from both William Engdahl’s Manifest Destiny: Democracy as Cognitive Dissonance and Phil Nelson’s yet to be released book — Who REALLY Killed Martin Luther King Jr.? The Case Against Lyndon B. Johnson and J. Edgar Hoover. I’ve already posted another on the Nelson book yesterday and I am posting another one today from the Engdahl book. Note that I’ve had the nod from both authors to do this. FYI, I will be doing more of this type of thing down the track when I launch my new news/information/oped forum. Stay tuned. Best to you chaps. GM


          • Bob Van Noy
            March 31, 2018 at 07:42

            G’Day to you Greg Maybury! Always good to hear from you. I still get excited by communicating with people on the other side of our Planet.
            Greg, I’ve avoided Facebook like the plague so you’ve been frustrating me with that. I’ve gotten the book by F. William Engdahl which I will link again here. It’s stunning even for me.
            I’ll pursue the other and I very much look forward to hearing more from you!
            My Very Best… Bob


          • Bob Van Noy
            March 31, 2018 at 07:45

            By the way LBJ and Hoover; YES!

          • Bob Van Noy
            March 31, 2018 at 08:04

            Who REALLY Killed Martin Luther King Jr.?: The Case Against Lyndon B. Johnson and J. Edgar Hoover Hardcover – April 17, 2018


    • Bill
      March 29, 2018 at 14:07

      don’t forget that Mo Atta’s stripper girlfriend never appeared on Oprah or Sally Jesse Raphael to answered America’s biggest question: Has he kinda complex or just really dreamy?

        March 29, 2018 at 16:03

        Also don’t forget that Atta’s intact, unsinged passport was conveniently found a short distance from the WTC towers after they collapsed on 9/11. Quite a miracle.

    • E. Leete
      March 29, 2018 at 14:11


    • Linda Wood
      March 29, 2018 at 17:26

      Bob In Portland, thank you for this excellent information.

      The most important case in which Mueller stood dead pan and did nothing was the anthrax case, in which the lead Investigator, Richard Lambert, filed a federal whistleblower lawsuit in 2015 naming Mueller as a defendant.

      In the anthrax case, what you said so well definitely applies:

      In short, whatever Mueller eventually finds he won’t find the CIA.

      Thank you again for setting out these important points.

    • March 29, 2018 at 17:46

      “Oh, and in 1966 he married into the CIA. His wife’s grandfather was Charles Cabell, the second in command who was fired by JFK after the Bay of Pigs. Her grand-uncle was the mayor of Dallas at the time of JFK’s assassination.”

      He (Muller) is also the nephew of Richard Bissell. His deep state connections abound.

    • Joe Tedesky
      March 29, 2018 at 21:33

      Not long ago I heard William Binney explain to how the NSA acquires the damping evidence then because the government can’t use that evidence the FBI transposes the NSA info into a worded case the FBI can use against a defendant…. this is called ‘Parallel Construction’ if my memory serves me right. So what you say makes even more sense to how Mueller may specialize in that kind of dark legal art.

    • backwardsevolution
      March 30, 2018 at 00:18

      Bob in Portland – that was a very good post. Thank you.

  21. mike k
    March 29, 2018 at 12:49

    How hard can it be to confuse and muddle the minds of people brought up from infancy in a falsely constructed version of reality that is intended to keep them ignorant and submissive to authority? The inability of the vast majority to think for themselves outside the boxes they have been brought up in, provides the ideal environment for fascist government. False flag operations of all kinds rely on people’s inability to question authority, something they are trained for from infancy. That is why everyone who shows up on CN and other alternative sites is a rebel, and an escapee from cultural brainwashing – excluding various trolls of course.

  22. Churro
    March 29, 2018 at 12:45

    Striking in its absence is any mention of William Pepper and his extensive work on the MLK assassination. Pepper was not only a friend of King’s in life but became Mr. Ray’s attorney after a lengthy investigation found that he was a patsy put forward by a conspiracy that involved the FBI, Memphis PD, organized crime, and military intelligence. Pepper represented Ray in the only legal proceeding that looked at King’s killing, a civil trial that found in favor of Pepper’s proposed theory (he also engaged in an HBO televised “mock” trial that had similar results and was similarly ignored by almost all media). While the King family supported Pepper’s findings, he was roundly ignored even by most “progressive” media.

    It’s unusual even to find a reference to the HSCA in independent media, but the above treatment is lacking.

  23. Bob Van Noy
    March 29, 2018 at 12:33

    This is a topic that I’ve been studying for years and have a great deal to add to but it all begins with a man that is, in my opinion a Great American, going all the way back to Vietnam. His name is William Pepper and if you’ve never heard of him; shame on you. You havn’t been paying attention.
    Thank you Nat and Bob Katz!

    • Bob Van Noy
      March 29, 2018 at 12:39
      • March 29, 2018 at 19:18

        BobV…that is another excellent interview by James Corbett. This time I actually subscribed to the website(I had been free loading for some time).

    • Dennis
      March 30, 2018 at 04:29

      Right on the mark Bob. The Pepper investigation spanned close to seventeen years I believe and
      revealed the nexus of the national security establishment (including FBI, Army Intelligence, the
      Memphis Police department and CIA because the man taking MLK’s pulse as he lay gravely
      wounded on the Lorraine balcony was Merrell McCullough, a CIA operative.) and organized crime. Right wing oil billionaire H.L. Hunt also discussed the need for King’s assassination with
      J. Edgar Hoover prior to that final year of FBI/army surveillance on Dr. King.
      This Katz piece is very tepid and feels extremely dated.

  24. March 29, 2018 at 12:13

    Of course, the state always closes the book on investigations that never are really “investigated”. I am surprised that this article makes no reference to lawyer William Pepper’s three books on King’s assassination, the most recent 2016 “The Plot to Kill Martin Luther King”. Pepper represented the King family in a civil case against the FBI and other state agents. His investigation of more than 20 years uncovered collusion between FBI, the Dixie Mafia, Memphis police. The King family never did believe the government story, and the jury ruled in favor of their civil case but MSM would not touch this story. Check out Global Research “The Plot to Kill Martin Luther King” summary of the astonishing details based on Pepper’s research.

    Likewise, the public is fed the lies of the state in the Mueller “probe”, a waste of taxpayer money but with dual intent to bring Trump in line with the Deep State and to demonize Russia and Vladimir Putin because Russia won’t put up with the “New American Century” of US domination through chaos and war. China isn’t going to put up with US intimidation anymore, either. The US/Western empire is collapsing, but MSM get their orders to babble about Stormy Daniels and other tabloid trash.

    • Bob Van Noy
      March 29, 2018 at 12:36

      Sorry Jessika, I didn’t see your post when I was responding; but you got it!, He’s the man on this subject. Many Thanks…

    • Nancy
      March 29, 2018 at 13:17

      In a nutshell.

    • orwell
      March 29, 2018 at 15:09

      Thank You, Jessika !!!

    • March 29, 2018 at 15:19

      Jessika: I did not see your post before I made mine. Yours is a more comprehensive outline of the points I was trying to make. Regular readers of this site are mostly aware of these matters. Bravo.

    • E. Leete
      March 29, 2018 at 17:04

      yes, Brava and well said from me, too, Jessika

    • March 29, 2018 at 17:37

      Yes, a great post. I should have read further before I posted as it was unnecessary, all I had to do was respond with a “Yes!” to yours! :)

    • Jay
      March 29, 2018 at 17:57


      Indeed it is disappointing that Pepper’s books on the MLK killing aren’t mentioned here.

      “Disappointing” being an extreme understatement.

    • nonsense factory
      March 30, 2018 at 08:47

      “Of course, the state always closes the book on investigations that never are really “investigated””

      Indeed. The story of MLK’s assassination to me seems connected to the decision by MLK to broaden his focus, in particular to get involved in the anti-Vietnam War movement (where, incidentally, drafted black soldiers were often shipped to the worst zones – “Early in the war, when blacks made up about 11.0% of our Vietnam force, black casualties soared to over 20% of the total (1965, 1966).“ This was a time when CIA’s Operation CHAOS and the FBI’s Operation COINTELPRO were very active in the United States and were bent on trying to disrupt opposition to the Vietnam War.

      On the other hand, I’ve never bought the story that JFK would have pulled out of Vietnam after getting the early 1964 report from McNamara that the south Vietnam government was on the verge of collapse. JFK was basically trying to do in Vietnam what Bush and Obama were trying to do in Afghanistan – rely on the local government to crush all domestic opposition (generally, this approach was taken in South Korea and Indonesia, successfully, for decades, that was the model JFK was thinking of).

      As far as Bob Mueller, who took over the FBI on Sep 4 2001, his record of collusion with dishonest investigations is best understood by looking at the anthrax mailings, dropped in the mail on 9/18 2001 and 10/9 2001 (to media outlets, and to Congress, respectively). The first investigation was fairly successful in quickly ruling out Iraq as the source of the material, instead pointing to a domestic source linked to the ‘defensive’ US biological weapons program. Mueller killed this investigation by the end of December 2001, replacing his agents with ones who turned to Steven Hatfill and puttered around until 2006, mostly making sure nobody who knew anything was talking to the press. Then Steven Hatfill won his multi-million dollar settlement for false accusations. After that, nothing until 2008, until the convenient ‘suicide’ of Bruce Ivins allowed Mueller to call ‘case closed’. Ivins left no suicide note and had no access to equipment needed to produce the highly technical aerosolizable anthrax spores. There is quite a bit of evidence pointing to members of Dick Cheney’s staff and the CIA’s Project Clear Vision being the true actors behind those attacks, which were intended to create a causus belli for invading Iraq.

      So no, Mueller can’t be trusted to be honest – he’s just an apparatchik/functionary in the Brezhnev Soviet model.

      • ToivoS
        March 30, 2018 at 12:04

        I agree with your assessment on Bruce Ivins. I know what is required to prepare a gram of Bacillus spores. Ivins lab simply was not set up to produce such quantities. Fort Dietrick has such facilities but to use them would have left a dozen witnesses. Basically Mueller must have known that Ivins either was totally innocent or, if not, he had many accomplices. Mueller obviously has helped cover up a major crime.

  25. David G
    March 29, 2018 at 12:11

    So Bob Katz is chiding the people of the future for having an oversimplified view (“NO COLLUSION!”) of the Mueller investigation’s conclusions on the “Trump-Russia-election saga”, even though the investigation continues and has not yet accused (let alone proved) any Trump-worlders of “collusion” (except with Israel).

    (Bad future people! You’re such a disappointment to Bob Katz! I hope you’re proud of yourselves.)

    And he decries that “a far less complicated account – NO COLLUSION! – gets blasted from the loudest megaphone known to humankind”, even though the entire mainstream media establishment has been forcing various (sometimes mutually inconsistent) Trump-Russia collusion narratives down our collective throat for almost two years now.

    Well, okay then.

    • Stygg
      March 29, 2018 at 16:31

      I was wondering about that too.

  26. Jay
    March 29, 2018 at 11:42

    James Earl Ray, except for being setup to take the fall by the conspirators, had nothing to do with shooting MLK. He wasn’t even in the area when the shot that hit King, leading to his death, was fired.

    See: Pepper’s “The Plot to Kill King”–into not a short simple book to read.

    • Dave Easley
      March 29, 2018 at 14:00

      I just happened to be in a bookstore just outside of Memphis the week that book came out otherwise I might never have heard of it. I’m surprised the Consortium writer doesn’t seem to know that case or that Mrs. King tried to get J.E.R. released, believing him to be innocent of her husband’s murder.

      • Jay
        March 29, 2018 at 14:26

        Dave Easley:

        I only learned about the book from watching Lee Camp on his “Redacted Tonight” show.

        Given that “The Plot to Kill King” is a revision of a 20 year old book by Pepper, I’m surprised it that Consortium News didn’t know of the book(s).

        However, the late Robert Parry, though I certainly respect him, was never one to chase down stories of a shot coming from another direction–if you follow what I mean.

        • Charles Watkins
          March 29, 2018 at 17:12

          I bought the book when it came out. There were articles all over the Internet. I am dumbfounded that the author did not seem to be aware of it. He does not appear to be a serious journalist.

          • Jay
            March 29, 2018 at 17:42


            I don’t own the Pepper book, so I can’t check.

            But I seem to remember something about a St Louis/Missouri conspiracy that was purported to have involved Ray, thereby proving some form of conspiracy to have Ray kill MLK. However the book pointed out some huge holes in that story, including some fake news published in the NY Times in about 1970.

            The point is that there was a fake Missouri conspiracy, which certainly could involve the St Louis lawyer mentioned here.

    • March 29, 2018 at 17:35

      The important part about Pepper’s work is that there was another trial, a wrongful death suit done by Dr. King’s family. That trial concluded Ray didn’t kill Dr. King.

      I too was wondering what in the world the author was doing making a big deal out of the House investigation, which has no legal standing, while ignoring the finding of an actual trial. I also couldn’t tell whether the author was asserting that the House investigation was correct in assigning blame to Ray or not.

      It also sounds to me like he’s asserting that the Mueller probe will prove that Trump colluded with Russia but that it won’t be dramatic and specific enough to achieve anything. But then he wasn’t really clear on that to me.

      I think the ambiguity is in the article.

      • Joe Tedesky
        March 29, 2018 at 21:06

        Miranda your assessment of the comparison between the 1999 Memphis Jury decision towards government t conspiracy over the HSCA investigation is where my head went swimming also…. thanks for putting it the way you did.

        I see that both Hillary and Donald will have the Russian collusion allegations being thrown against them. I don’t see either suffering anything from all this, but I do see bargaining chips being acquired at the cashiers office, the cashier being the National Security Deep State. With all the right/wrong Zionist dual citizenship suckers in all the right/wrong places, like in the controlling HQ’s of the MSM, these politicos can be made to do anything it is asked of them, or better put demanded. Do our American politicians need this extortion to be forced to do highly evil things? Hell no, but the extortion is that insurance policy FBI Agent Strzok made comment about. It helps.

        I seriously believe that before spring is over we are going to war. Joe

        • March 30, 2018 at 00:43

          I hope we don’t go to war. But I expect we’ll go to war with Iran or Venezuela soon, the other later.

          • Joe Tedesky
            March 30, 2018 at 01:30

            I should be more careful to throwing that around Miranda, but I see Forces at work here to make me think that. Let’s hope the ‘think the worst the best will happen’ is the advice best worth the events. Joe

    • March 29, 2018 at 17:57

      It’s curious that the article doesn’t mention Pepper, I would have expected more from this site. I posted a similar comment below before seeing your post.

      • Joe Tedesky
        March 29, 2018 at 21:15

        I couldn’t decide to whether the Mueller investigation is going to fall by the way side, as the author may have suggested to how MLK’s HSCA investigation got loss down the memory hole… is it me?

        If this is the point, then the 1999 Memphis Jury decision is even more confounding to how it has been ignored over all these years. I watched a 2 hour special on NBC documenting to how MLK used the media coverage to advance the cause, (duh yeah) and as I waited all the way to the end with credits and theme music and all and never a mention of the Memphis Jury decision of 12/8/99. Maybe that ignorance is a sign of Deep State MSM influence, I just don’t know. Joe

      • March 30, 2018 at 08:46

        It is frankly insulting that the author of this article Bob Katz, ignorant to a fault, has no idea of what he is talking about. William Pepper, Esq. has written three (3) books about the civil trial case he won that clearly presented a great deal of evidence that the U.S. Government was behind the MLK assassination. The jury agreed with him after nearly 70 days of testimony. Pepper represented the King family in this case, but of course our media completely dodged covering the trial or giving it any publicity. The Consortium should withdraw this article immediately!!!!!

        • Paul G.
          March 30, 2018 at 11:48

          I am shocked Consortium would run this piece regurgitating the establishment line on the King assassination This fellow is obviously totally ignorant of the Pepper/King civil suit as he doesn’t even mention it; which is pretty stupid. Even if he disagreed with he should try to counter argue, but he acts like he doesn’t even know about it. I doubt this would have happened if Bob was still around.
          Probably a lot of people reading this know; but for others I will mention briefly the summary of the suit: That is: Ray was involved peripherally but not as the shooter; who actually was the Memphis police’s best marksman. There was apparently a back up team of Special Forces(not sure if active or former). J Edgar, not surprisingly, was in on it. In other words the government did it; which is why there will never be an honest official inquiry just like with JFK. Another thing, the standard operating procedure for high profile assassinations is the use of a patsy to take the blame. In this case Ray, in JFK’s Oswald, and RFK Sirhan; the latter actually did shoot but someone else apparently got Robert from behind.
          I will mention something else the three most significant assassinations were of people who were highly influential and opposed to the war in Vietnam: JFK, who was withdrawing; King, and RFK.

          • Jay
            March 30, 2018 at 22:09

            Paul G:

            Don’t forget that MLK was organizing a march of the poor (of all races) on Washington DC.

            He wasn’t simply against the Vietnam war.

          • Rob Roy
            April 1, 2018 at 14:50

            The peacekeepers will always be assassinated by the government. Can’t have peace. Too much money to be made in war.

    • Peppermint
      April 3, 2018 at 14:21

      The King family doesn’t believe James Earl Ray did it. There are plenty of articles out there reporting such. I’m inclined to believe them.

  27. Drew Hunkins
    March 29, 2018 at 11:23

    To see otherwise great congresspersons fall for and peddle the Russophobia connected to the hoax Russiagate imbroglio is one of the most dispiriting and depressing paradigms I’ve ever witnessed in my few decades of observing the politico-economic scene.

    King, Malcolm and millions of the committed activists, intellectuals and regular folk who worked with them daily are rolling over in their graves watching John Lewis, Maxine Waters and other members of the Congressional Black Caucus put us on the brink of a nuclear war with nation-state that simply wants to retain its sovereign independence! These otherwise excellent congresspersons are in effect going to bat for the same COINTELPRO scumbags who spied on Malcolm and King (and others) and did every last thing in their power to subvert, confuse, mock, destabilize and destroy populist-progressive movements coming from the underdogs of our country.


    • Nancy
      March 29, 2018 at 12:18

      Great and excellent congresspersons? And who would they be?
      All these creatures are revealing themselves to be the phony and corrupt puppets they are.
      Believe them.

      • Drew Hunkins
        March 29, 2018 at 12:55

        I hear ya. But I was referring to most of the members of the Congressional Black Caucus and Progressive caucus who are otherwise quite good on kitchen table bread and butter domestic issues.

        But your point is well taken, on many issues, especially related to war, Zionism, and militarist budgets even they leave a lot to be desired.

        • Nancy
          March 29, 2018 at 13:15

          Kitchen table issues don’t matter that much in a world of perpetual war that drains the Treasury. Maxine Waters, Keith Ellison, Cory Booker, Raul Grijalva, etc. are tools who participate in this travesty for reasons of self-enrichment and career advancement.
          They’re worse than Republicans in my opinion–the more effective evil, as Glen Ford of Black Agenda Report described Obama.

          • Bill
            March 29, 2018 at 13:59

            Thanks for your purity, Nancy. it’s very encouraging. You planning to run for office?

          • E. Leete
            March 29, 2018 at 14:24

            Glen Ford is a great national treasure. This would be a different country if every citizen knew his name. I’ve subscribed to BAR since their start. Can’t recommend them highly enough! Thnx Nancy

        • nonsense factory
          March 30, 2018 at 08:24

          Ah – my understanding of the Congressional Black Caucus is that they backed Hillary Clinton and generally have a pro-Wall Street agenda.

          After the 2008 economic crash, decisions made by Congress and the White House – both Bush and Obama, both the Republican-led and Democratic-led Congress, resulted in a wave of foreclosures that forced many thousands of minority homeowners out of their homes and back into the rental system. This approach was backed not just by GW Bush and Henry Paulson, but also by Barak Obama and Hillary Clinton. The result?

          “The foreclosure crisis has rapidly expanded the wealth gap between black and white in America which, according to PEW Research, has tripled with 53 percent of Black wealth eliminated as a result of plummeting home prices.” – 2013

          “The Congressional Black Caucus’ political action committee endorsed Hillary Clinton Thursday, just as the Democratic presidential candidate is set to battle with rival Bernie Sanders at a PBS-hosted debate in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.” – 2016

          In contrast, under similar circumstances in 1932-1933, FDR rescued homeowners from foreclosure and dispossession by creating a national bank, which took over the loans at low interest, while Wall Street was forced to eat its losses. Wall Street interests responded by trying to launch a fascist coup, as Smedley Butler revealed.

          When FDR died, black people lined the train tracks as his casket went by, because, despite the endemic racism of that era, they knew he had worked to improve their standard of living, as well as that of poor southern whites, with his New Deal programs, from foreclosure protection to rural electrification. The Congressional Black Caucus today, in contrast, got behind Hillary Clinton and the neoliberal job destroyers and the Wall Street plutocrats.

          • M. E. Anderson
            April 3, 2018 at 15:09

            I don’t understand how you can make such sweeping generalizations about the parties causing the crash. I have been involved in the financial industry, real estate development and sales and I can tell you that greedy mortgage companies and big banks who wanted to take massive profits quickly are responsible, In every generation, there will be this element. I have watched this for 50 years. The newbies can’t wait to figure out a way to beat the system and make obscene profits so they can retire to Bali. They ignore laws that are so stiff that people in the industry don’t pay attention because they, themselves, would never commit such acts. For example, in California, a loan broker would have had his or her license revoked upon the discovery that a loan had been made without evidence the person could afford the purchase. I had my brokers license in California for 50 years, so I know this is true. Who would ever imagine the insanity of the brokering of these loans??? No one paid any attention to anything more than the bottom line.

            In fact, the larger number of people involved were Republicans, but I do not think that is why they broke the law. They broke the law because their companies did not object and in many cases, defended them.

            The complaints you guys are making are about the usual behaviors of organizations during elections. It has always been this way and always will be. My concern is that you do not rage against the individuals and corporate boards who are responsible for this. We can whine all we want because someone was to mean to us, or to our candidate , but until you take a stand with your state and federal reps, and in fact lobby them about going back to regulating the industries that continue to abuse “We the People,” nothing will change. It is candy-Ass to sit around and pontificate about parties, but until Americans hit the pavement and organize and get signatures on petitions, we will be the serfs with no rights.

    • March 29, 2018 at 14:50

      Drew, I totally agree. The Russian hysteria over total lies has made it nearly impossible for me to discuss the current state of the country with my many unawake friends. (If people remember its genesis was over the emails sent to Julian Assange. It is my belief and shared by many other students of the deep state that it was DNC staffer Seth Rich, angry over what the DNC had done to Sanders, who sent the emails, and was murdered as a result. Muller has nothing because there is nothing.

      Interesting that ” every news outlet was present” for Ray’s HSCA testimony but none were present for the civil trial brought by the family that resulted in a verdict that King was killed by a conspiracy.

      • Bandit
        March 30, 2018 at 04:01

        You fail to point out that it was a conspiracy involving the deep state. Coretta King won a civil suit, but there is no evidence that any of the perps were prosecuted. Here is a quote from Coretta King, “the conspiracy of the Mafia, local, state and federal government agencies, were deeply involved in the assassination of my husband. The jury also affirmed overwhelming evidence that identified someone else, not James Earl Ray, as the shooter, and that Mr. Ray was set up to take the blame.”

      • Bjjorn Jensen
        April 1, 2018 at 13:20

        The king family civil trial was not conclusive .Seth Rich as leaker ? Zero evidence.

        • David Otness
          April 2, 2018 at 00:44

          Try Occam’s Razor. Becuz “robbery as the motive” just ain’t that sharp, leaving his wallet unrifled and all that. None so blind as those who will not see… The forest for the trees syndrome, hmm?

Comments are closed.