By Max Holland
The 1967 arrest and indictment of Clay Shaw for conspiring to kill President Kennedy was one of the greatest travesties in the history of American jurisprudence.
That much was understood by 1969, once Shaw was acquitted after 54 minutes of deliberation by a New Orleans jury. What was not understood until fairly recently, though, was the lie at the core of DA Jim Garrison's persecution of Shaw. Garrison was duped by a false allegation published in a Communist-controlled Italian newspaper, Paese Sera. The Garrison saga would be almost laughable, given how the DA was so easily fooled, save for the tragedy inflicted on Clay Shaw, and the lasting damage Garrison wrought to the public perception of what happened in Dallas on 22 November 1963.
Garrison forever changed the terms of public debate on the assassination. Before the New Orleans district attorney became involved, the worst criticism made of the U.S. government was that it had not been sufficiently devoted to, or diligent about, finding the true perpetrators. Garrison made the U.S. government--specifically, the CIA--complicit in the assassination itself.
Click on the title to read “The Power of Disinformation: The Lie That Linked the CIA to the Kennedy Assassination,” which appeared in Studies in Intelligence in 2001.
Oliver Stone, whose 1991 film JFK exalted Jim Garrison, critiqued the Studies article in a 2002 paid advertisement that appeared in The Nation magazine.
© 2001 by Max Holland