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tv   Book TV  CSPAN  September 2, 2013 8:30pm-9:31pm EDT

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the sixth floor museum. see thank you. >> i need to remind folks we need you to turn your cell phones off. not just put them on silent but turn them off. there's a lot of radio inter-floods -- influence and they want to make sure the recordings come out well. their two cameras here from c-span. the program is being recorded for c-span and they will broadcast the sometime probably in the next week or two. we don't have an air date yet. our associate curator is recording also for the oral oral history program which totals over 800 people. well we are chatting the biographies of our guests will appear on the screens behind us and also some photographs. the ones of the kennedys come from the national archives and the white house photographers and the photographs of the kennedys you will see in dallas comes from the sixth floor museum collections. we will also have a q&a session.
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many of you have filled out the forms are ready. if you don't have a pencil or pin to write with pulled up your hands and our people will come around. i have some prepared questions obviously but i know i can't cover everything and we will see we can do. toward the end of the program we will get into our q&a session. let's get acquainted first. we like to do that with these programs. raise your hand and remember the kennedy assassination weekend. raise your hand if you are here in dallas at the time. fascinating. i wanted to make one point. we are here because of a very sad event but we don't want to make this a sad occasion. i would like to pass on a story that came to me while i was halfway through the book. it did not occur to me until i read a passage in the book. let me take you back to denver colorado where jerry and clans worked in the office but not at
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this time. in 1963 i think it was i saw president kennedy and at the time we lived next door to one of the top executives at the local lincoln mercury dealer. he came over wednesday and told my dad and i president kennedy is coming to town that we are going to service his limousine. he is going to come right by here really just lived a block away from the major east-west street. i know when they are coming by and if you go out there and sixth avenue you will be up to see him and waved to him. so i went out there and there was no one else there because the route he was taking from the air force base to downtown denver was not publish so i'm the only one out there. i saw the flashing lights and here comes the big limousine. i waved and waved. we never saw him. he had his head down and he was reading something. it occurred to me reading this book that there were secret service agents in the car wondering how did that guy know?
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[laughter] and who else knows? there is probably something in the files. one of the stories that has been talked about a lot is the moment that you jerry almost gunned down the brand-new president of the united states lyndon johnson. you were at the white house. take it from there. what happened? >> it wasn't the white house. this was about 2:15 in the morning after the assassination and we were all kennedy detail agents that were standing watch. president kennedy if he came outside he would notify the security command post and we would get the word around that the president was out moving. the vice president before he
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became president usually only had about two agents with him. one would be inside and maybe the other one out. so he had no idea of the protocol. i hadn't slept in about 40 hours and i was hallucinating. when i relayed the 4:00 to 12:00 agent he was still emotionally distraught from dallas. he brought in a thompson machine gun. we place them all their not knowing whether or as a conspiracy or not and pretty much on edge. i heard a noise coming from around the house and all of a sudden i had the weapon to mice shoulder and my finger on the trigger. i didn't notice it but you can
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recognize lyndon johnson's profile so fortunately i notified or noticed that right away. but it was closed. i had nightmares over that for a long time after that. >> those of you who have been here before and know where we are and of course the c-span viewers might not know. we are actually on the seventh floor of what used to be the texas building. the museum has exhibits on the sixth floor and the 74 are in a separate area. it's a saturday afternoon. in two days it will have been 47 year since president kennedy was killed right outside of these windows. jerry and lisa where was this -- where has this been and why is it taking so long for the stories from you guys to come out? >> let me start with the motivation first. when i retired i started looking
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on the internet and started reading stories about a conspiracy, the drivers turning around and shooting president kennedy. although if you look closely you would have had had to have shot mrs. kennedy in the back of the head in order for you to get to the president at that time. just stories that were defaming the people. so i read a story where i conduct did in advance and i went back and looked at my records and i said it's time to set the record straight. there are not many of us left. where are all gray-haired and we won't be a lot -- around very long so we wanted to leave a record. to find somebody, i must to read probably about seven books to tell the story but to find
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somebody that could put the heart and soul to the book. lisa mccubbin who wasn't even born at the time of the assassination but choice my wife and i were friends with her parents. she graduated with my son from high school so lisa in the course of this became an agent and i think i will let her discuss her feelings as she put this together with me. >> you want me to talk about that a little bit? first of all it's an honor and a privilege to have been involved in this project. i feel extremely lucky that somehow the stars aligned and jerry and i have known each other for all these years. it was the right time and we came together to work on this project. it has been just fascinating for me because i was born in january
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of 1964 and in history class it seems like when you take u.s. history in your junior year of high school you get to about world war ii world war ii and its me and things are winding down. i had never studied the kennedy assassination. of course i knew of its, but i didn't know much about it. what i knew was that when i used to go to the blaine's house they are his had a great christmas eve party. they had these great photographs of jerry with lyndon johnson and kennedy. i was always fascinated by that. being 12 years old at the time or 16 years old i didn't feel comfortable asking him about it so working on this book i feel like i i've got a rare window into history like no one else has. >> it is your first book? i know you have been a journalist for much of your professional life. >> this is my first published book.
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>> yes i read through the book i could tell where you were leading me and sometimes when you read books like that it's kind of annoying but with your book i was enjoying getting there. i knew what you were leading to and an emotional moment. it was enjoyable to follow along with how that trail wound around. how did you decide to write the book in the way you did? >> as jerry said he had spent many years putting stories together and he had contacted a lot of the agents already. i had a lot of material to work with in terms of all of the various stories. we came up with the ideas together on how to put the story together. to me what was really fascinating and was important in this book was to show these men as human beings, not just these nameless faceless man in dark sunglasses. to me the secret service agents
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were really mysterious creatures. as i have gotten to know them i realized they are human beings and the stories that i read from the various agents and eyes i started interviewing the agents were just so poignant. to me it was really important to make the reader understand who these men were and to love them and to understand the close relationship they had with the kennedys so that you know what's going to happen in the book. everybody knows what's going to happen but you kind of want to know -- now you start caring about jerry blaine and you want to know where is he when this happens? wanted to kind of build that drum into it. >> length you were somewhat reluctant to get involved. you have appeared very few times over the years, more so than the other ages but how did you get involved in this book and how did jerry taught you intuit?
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[inaudible] he called me one day and asked me if i would be willing to contribute to a book he was writing. he told me what was going to be about and i was not enthusiastic at all. i was very apprehensive about it because i had been offered many chances to write looks and contribute to books and appear on television and various things and i just did not want to do it. so then he told me that this book was going to be factual. no salacious information of gossip and the information will be coming from the agents that were involved in the material that they had. and then he said that i could check it for facts. once he said that, that then i agree to contributors long as i could check it which i did and i have read the book six times. i know what is in it and it's factual enough sense. >> you mention salacious material and some of the kennedy legacy is the talk about his
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personal life. there there's not a whole lot of that in your book. why is that? >> well, we in the secret service gave the president and his family as much privacy as we can. when they got to the second for the white house that is where they lived. you stay out of there in less you have to go there or a request to go there. what happens on the second floor is their business, not ours. and the same with their business out of the white house. we provide them with an environment. they live their lives as they want to live it and we don't interview -- interfere and we don't talk about it. >> you for several months following the assassination you continued with your assignment which was jackie kennedy. at some point do people come up to you like after the "life" magazine came out with the
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zapruder film did they come up to you and say are you that guy? did that happen? >> rarely because i try to make sure nobody knew who i was. i stayed with mrs. kennedy and the children for a full year after the assassination until november of 1964 and then i would return to the white house. >> you did that make it easier or harder to deal with what happened in a erstwhile relationship with jackie? >> it made it more difficult because i had to go through the grieving process with the family with she and the children. christmas in 64 was an absolute horror. >> you did you to stay in touch after that? >> in 1964 they threw a going away party for me in new york where she was living at the time. she had moved to new york and i was in a hotel room in new york.
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they wished me well and i thought i would be transferred to wyoming. i thought for sure i would never look back on the white house detail. i saw her in 1968 at the funeral of senator robert kennedy and i talked to her on the telephone because the van chest and she had in protecting the children and that was the incentive. >> all three of you i assume spoke with many of the current and former agents at the time about this project. how did those conversations go and what kind of her sponsors did you get especially from those who would not speak or participate in this project? >> well, i started off by calling jerry baines' wife. jerry had passed on and he was the agent in charge. i talked with her and told her that i was thinking of doing
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that. the second person i touched base with was floyd boric. surprising probably to many of you but we never discussed the assassination with each other. after the assassination occurred, there was no trauma counseling. there was just an awful lot of work to do. so we were left to do the work. our working life was 60 hours a month overtime on average. i think i calculated it out. we made about $1.80 an hour. we were constantly working and we would work in the only way you can relax is to take an hour to and spend time relaxing with the agent you are working with.
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so, we just somehow kind of swallowed our emotions. we got wrapped up in the new president and we had no idea what impact it was going to have on us for the rest of our lives. there were two agents that i talked to but they told me they didn't want to participate. one was jack reidy and i have a great deal of empathy for jack reidy because he was on the president's side of the automobile. when he heard the first retort he turned around and looked up from where the shot came from. clint explained later as his eyes scanned over he noticed the president's hands go to his throat. so clint took off immediately and jack then turned around and for all of his life he wanted to
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jump off of the carpet the follow-up car driver had pulled over and jack attempted to make it -- he had been run over by a car. hollywood played a big impact. in the line of fire they had clint eastwood's figure pasted and where jack reidy was on the follow-up car. the theme of the movie was that he failed miserably at his job. that was the theme of the movie. i am speculating but i think that is probably what impacted jack. he just said emotionally he couldn't participate. a second agent don lawton, who was assigned to do the departure events here in dallas and we were so stripped down of agents
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on this trip. that will probably be another question but don was the senior agent and we needed a senior agent to handle the depart sure. he was left behind in you may have seen movies and some of the theorists say he was being told to stand down. don was just giving his turn to run by the car and he knew he was going to have to stay there. not being able to be with the president in dallas that day really impacted him. >> you one of the things that comes out very clearly in the book is the day-to-day routine of the agents. >> you sometimes you are looking up in the blackwater out there somewhere saying why did i waste
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four years going to college? but the rest of the time our agents were pre-technology. we used hand signals with each other. we had no radio communication. we had 3x5 cards with photographs of people and we would memorize those pictures. people would always ask why we wore sunglasses. behind the sunglasses your eyes can look right and left and so if you see one of the individuals then you bang on the side of the car. other agents do that and you do a quick turnover that way. they have got their eye on him and if you feel a threat you notify the driver to move on. that was the technology.
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>> is it okay for the general public to know that now? >> we have it legit i think in 1963 of $4.5 million. i don't think we have that much but we have probably 330 agents. there were 34 of us on white house detail. there were two agents on the first lady and three agents on the children. today they have the budget although conservative $1.4 million they have somewhere in the neighborhood of about 3500 agents and 7000 employees as an organization. it's an altogether different game today. but the weaponry is much better too. when you get the sniper rifles that can do head shots a mile away and some of the other technologies and larger groups
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that use suicide as a weapon you have still got a serious problem. the agents today still have the same hardened soul that we do. >> the business is so much more complicated now. it makes me wonder did you have to show the manuscript of the secret service before went to the public? >> they do not have to seek approval at all. >> we allowed to take a book and talk to the director about it and he read the book and he called up and was very enthusiastic about the book. he invited us to have lunch with them last monday.
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he thought the book should be read by every new agent in the service to help them understand exactly what happened in the past. >> i might add to that. clint did notify dreck are sold and while writing the book to let him know it was being done and at first what did he say? >> he said oh no, not another book. [laughter] >> but then he found out that clint was involved and he said clint hillis and bald, we don't have a problem with it. >> you can't get much better than that. jerry after you left the service you did mostly security work but you lived for a while here in the dallas area. were you hear one word first got out that there was going to be a a -- about the kennedy
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assassination here in town? >> i worked for ibm for 27 years. i left in july of 1964. i ended up working on law enforcement intelligence systems and how to did find a national broadcast center. the cia and mobile terminals and fingerprint scanners. my frustration and i think one of the reasons i left was it almost seems like a futile job. unless we have the type of equipment needed so i worked for quite a while on that. i made a call to the secret service exist the of ei system system -- we had no way of keeping track of where these potential threat cases were. they had a data processing
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manager with the secret service and so i said well why don't you just tie into the national information center and run the inquiries through and if you get a hit at least you will know where they are. and he said that would he and invasion of privacy. after going through the assassination i just couldn't take that. so i went into the security site and here in dallas i ain't worked for international. >> cleansed you stayed with the service for a while. you retired and dealt with the personal situation. what have you been doing since then?
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>> i have been with my family and that's about the only thing i i've been able to do recently. i was assigned to then-president johnson. the first thing that happened was president johnson went to his ranch in texas. one day i was walking between the house and the security room and president johnson saw me. he recognized me as having been on kennedy detail. i had met them personally in new york and visited kennedy in the carlisle hotel. he knew who i was innocent as he called -- saw me he called youngblood and said he wanted me removed immediately and didn't want me to be assigned to detail because i had been with the kennedys and he was sure i was a kennedy loyalist. after 30 minutes he convinced
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them that i should stay. eventually the agent charged with his protection when he left office he asked me if i would be willing to come down to his ranch and run his protective detail. i told him i didn't think my career ladder extended to -- [laughter] he accepted my denial going down there to take that job. i moved to headquarters and eventually was the assistant director for protection and then i was retired in 1975. >> in 1975 that was the interview on one of the earliest episodes 60 minutes programs.
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you got a phonecall at one point and i know this is a detail in the book. this was a moment when you first talked on camera about the kennedy assassination and people had remembered it ever since. of course now it's on youtube everywhere. do people ask you a lot about that appearance and what do you tell them about that? >> they do ask me about it. it's one of those situations where i completely -- 60 minutes matt did the taping twice. apparently don hewitt who is running 60 minutes matt didn't like the way they did it. he said they didn't get into my emotions enough. they said hey we have technical problems and we are going to have to shoot it again. i met them for lunch at a hotel
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in washington and they shot it again and this time the questions were quite different than they were the first time. he got right into my emotional baggage and i broke right on camera. many times i was asked about that and if i ever covered. i'm glad it happened the way it did because that was the first time i let loose of any of that emotional baggage. >> you had another moment when you and your wife came back to to --. >> in 1990 the agents had an organization called the association of former agents of the u.s. secret service and held a conference in san antonio. my wife and i decided to go to that. i decided since we were in the dallas area i didn't tell anybody this but we were going to go to dallas and san antonio.
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i had not been here since the assassination in 1963. we came to dealey plaza and i stood time observing the ankles and looking at the trees and what was different between 1963 and 1990. i was looking at the way the schoolbook depository was sitting relating to the streets. it was a museum at that time. what the view was and realized how close it was. it was a very easy shot and i came away realizing that i did a lot of good that day. i couldn't have done any more and it was such a relief to me to know that i have done everything i could do. >> you heard three shots. >> three shots that all came from the same location. >> evenly spaced?
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>> i didn't hear the second shot. the first shot came from my right rear and i was looking to the left to the grassy area on the left-hand side. when i heard the shots division took me to the right toward that shot and in so doing my eyes crossed the president's car. ..
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she was trying to retrieve something. i slippedded at first trying to get on the car, because bill, the driver accelerated the car, gained my footing again, got up on the car and helped her get in to the seat. when i did that, the president fell to his left to her lap. i could see the upper left portion of the head it was a large hole. it looked like someone scooped brain matter out. his eyes were fixed. it was quite sure it was a fatal wound. i turned to the followup car and gave a thumbs down to let them know it was a dire situation. the driver accelerated the car. [no audio]
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read u.s. -- lead us the nearest hospital. >> from the book and from some of the interviews i have seen, you were convinced there were three shots, one hit the president, one hit the governor, and the third shot hit and killed president kennedy. >> that's correct. >> now you know, that is contradicted by the warren commission. they concluded on the first shot hit kennedy and connelly. second shot missed and struck near a bystander and the second shot killed him. >> two of us believe it hit the governor. the other person who believes it was tell mely connelly who was sitting next to him. the third shot was a fatal
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wound. >> i believe there were two mistakes that the warren commission made they didn't call sam, who was the driver of the followup car or emery roberts, the shift leader because sam kennedy had to keep his icon substantially on the presidential limousine. and sam saw all three shots find the mark, and emery saw all three shots find the mark. unfortunately, they weren't asked to testify. >> if must have been difficult keeping up with facts like these and separating the facts from the silly stories out there. how did you go that? >> a lot of long days. [laughter] jerry and i talked about this a lot. i read something or read
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reports, and i would say, jerry this contradicts what you're telling me or which clint is telling me. i came to realize that these were the guys that were there, and their memories are so vivid and so clear, and as i would talk to other agents, they would corroborate the stories, and i realized that this is the truth. the other people that are writing these other reports and all of these researchers that have studied this endlessly, they weren't there, and, you know, there's -- so you can take some behalf is written, but what i believe is what these men have told me to true. >> i promised we do a q & a. i have a bunch of the questions already. if you still need fill out one of the cards, please do so. if you need something to write with, hold up your hand and our people will come by.
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here is an interesting one. this is a tough one. this is for jerry. you're spending so much time promoting the book. how is your golf game coming? [laughter] >> about the same as it was before i started promoting. [laughter] he can tell you it's not that good. [laughter] >> if you folks are 99% certain this was no conspiracy, what might that 1% be? >> well, no i would say 100%. i think any good investigator realizes that a conspiracy where one or more people or two or more people participate in a crime, it lasts probably 60 days at most. it's been 47 years, and there has been no evidence whatsoever of a conspiracy that has been proven. no proven facts.
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there is a lot of speculation, but then they just ignore the facts. i've gone through all of the volumes of the warren commission, and read through, and i have not found anything. i felt a real injustice was made when the house select committee on assassination studied and investigated a number of the conspiracies, and they finally said, well, we can find no evidence of a conspiracy; however, we feel there was a conspiracy. now, if that isn't a befuddling solution to a conference i don't know what it is. >> here is a question that we get here at the museum a lot. why wasn't the building, meaning the -- why wasn't it secured, and which buildings posed a bigger
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threat? that really goes to the heart how you did your job and the public perception. >> well, the agent that did the advance -- i think everybody on the detail agrees there would have been no better agent. he was very specific in it, but we go back to 34 agents, and we had 11 experienced agents leave in the two months prior to the assassination, and so we had to take all of our experienced agents and put them off in advance -- in case he had to go to secret service school, and walt was in miami, then he went to san antonio. so we had all of our resources out. usually there were only about five agents with the president at any time other than if there were another function.
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we were going to. one of the agents say the four to 12 agent shift would cover for the day shift agents. so you probably have ten there. but with five agents, our job wasn't to go after an asassen. or job was to cover the president and evacuate him from the area. and i've got a comment on clint's ability that day. the vehicle was going 11 miles an hour, there were 85-feet for dloint catch up with. he ran basically about fifteen miles an hour to reach the presidential car, and he got there after the third shot hit. there was no way anybody could have done anything to save him that day. >> the question was just handed to me. it's part of one that troubled
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me as one who has questions about some of the events of that day. the question is written where were secret service people positioned in the plaza? not talk about the motorcade. let talk about the plaza. >> everybody said it was the ideal place because the isolated billed -- building. you look at the county jail and the court house across the way, the other buildings. there was nothing unusual in this area. and, you know, there wasn't always air-conditioning at that time. so all of the windows were open. people were hanging out of it. we didn't have the resources. he did most of the advance himself, then dave came in to help him finish the last three days. you have to rely on local law
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enforcement, and local law enforcement did not have the resources. i mean, we all knew that the moving platform, which, by the way, the president road with the top off by preference everywhere he went. it was the only if it rained or if the wind was blowing and mrs. kennedy was accompanying without a hat. that was the only time the bubble time went on. so we knew that we had that isolation or that problem with exposure, and the even the night before president kennedy talked with jenny o'donnell and mrs. kennedy and she asked questions about protection. he said, you know, it would be very easy to, you know, kill the president. just by taking a shot out of a window. but this is a democracy, we didn't have the resources.
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it the resource, in effect, were the same they after had the blare house shooting, and we had no threats whatsoever or attempts against president eisenhower. >> that's one of the things that changed as a result of dallas. >> absolutely. presidents don't ride in open cars. >> that's right. i had an opportunity at our luncheon to take a look at president obama's car, i hardly had the energy to open the door. [laughter] >> it's not obama's car. it's the secret service car prepared for the president of the united states who happens at the present obama. [laughter] [applause] >> you were going add something. >> you mentioned this particular building, why was this building secured or the windows open or closed? we came down main street, all the windows were open on every
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window. people were hanging out the windows. people were balcony and rooftops. which building should we have secured on main street or at the corner of houston and elm. you only have a building secure but the rest of them? you couldn't do it. >> isn't it true, that the public perception you check all windows. in reality you don't. there's no way. >> at that time we were unable to. today it's different. there are ways they do checks on various areas when they have a motorcade. they don't ride in an open car either. >> right. let see, excellent question. how well or not well did all the agencies work together and share information at that time? [laughter] >> that's probably the answer right there. [laughter] >> well, he pretty good cooperation with all the government agencies including the fbi. i won't say anything bad about
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the bureau. they did the best job they could. there was a lack of exchange between information sometimes, but for the most part it was a good cooperation between the secret service, the fbi, the cia, whatever you want -- nsa, all of them. we all were in this together, and we helped each other. >> the problem in this case, as best i understand, is thats oswald was not really on anybody's list. he had no history of violence. just because he didn't like kennedy's policies which he freely ease sphowsed doesn't put anybody on the list. >> the fbi talked with him because of his defection. he really didn't have the kind of record that would cause them to notify the secret service that he might be a threat. >> one of the --
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was the limousine driving too slow? was there a minimum speed that you had to stay above? was there some regulation that said you can't make a tight turn like the one-off houston and elm? are those guidelines? >> no. there's no guidelines like that. that's one of the misconceptions. there was a difficult turn that they made out here, and i've heard comments of witnesses that say the car stopped and i think one of the big mistake if you watch the film going at natural speed, you'll see how fast this happened. it happened less than six seconds. the first sound, which sounded different to bill and roy in the front seat. bill wondered if he had a blow out. he tapped the pedal real quick
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to see if there was stability in the car, but if you watch the zack phil. -- film. you don't see a slowing down of the car. and you can -- you'll notice houston turning on to elm is a pretty sharp turn. that's a pretty good sighed car. didn't have a great turning. he had to slow down considerable belie. so much so that the motorcycle riders had a difficult time keeping their bikes up right as they made the turn. and when we got going, he was trying to get up to 11 to 12 miles per hour. which is what we were running when we came down main street too close to the car and had to slow down more. >> and kennedy's driver had not driven the route before. he knew to follow the car in
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front. he would know the route. >> that was his instructions. >> lisa, is this your first time at the plaza? what did you think the first time you got here? >> no, the first time i came was in january of 2009; is that right? or was it this year? >> this year. >> 2010. we were in the middle of writing the book, and i said to geri, i think i probably need to go to dallas. i've never been. gerry and his wife and i came here, and it was really invaluable, and i'm sure my comments were the same as everybody else who gets here. wow, it's a lot smaller than i ever imagined it was. and then to go up to the museum on the sixth floor, and just see, like, clint said, the shot and how easy it was and how
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close everything was. now the trees are taller, quite a bit taller, and more mature than they were in 1963. it just gave me a great perspective on just how to describe the situation, and try to give the reader a feel of what it was like for those people who haven't been here. this was their first time on this route, and, you know, they didn't know what buildings were around the corner. only the advanced agents had been here and knew the lay of the land. >> i have a question here. it refers in a way to something that is bothered me. and if i could, if i could ask you gentleman to speculate, one of the really interesting stories is that wan minute of
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the shooting, a dallas police officer ran toward the parking lot, toward the grassy knoll and encountered a man and smith had the gun drawn. he encountered a man who identified himself and flashed credential that he was secret service. there were no secret service men on the ground. who might -- any idea who that person could have been? clearly he had identification that looked official to the officer. any idea what it could have been? >> i have no idea. going to have to keep digging, aren't i? >> it wasn't a secret service agent. >> no. you can be sure of that. there were no agencies in the area. other than on the motorcade. >> there's a story out somebody passed the story that somebody had lost their identification,
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and so the secret service reissued in '64 new commission books, that is absolutely false. >> president kennedy's car was stripped down the frame and rebuilt, and was i guess -- i would assume bulletproof or bullet resistant. it was used by president johnson. did he comment about having to ride in that car? >> not to me. i road in -- rode in the front seat. how would you feel in the car? >> it was a little bit emotional to know it was a car which the event the assassination occurred. like you said, they stripped it down, and it was now armored. i don't recall exactly what the strength of the armor was. it was sufficient. it was the first armored car that the secret service owned.
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after the assassination, the secret service try to locate the armor car used by the president. the only one they could find was used by j. edgar hoover. [laughter] >> who happened to belong to al can own. >> which happened to be a car that used by al can own. -- cay own. [laughter] we called it 150t was the number of the car. it was a lightly armored. barely could stop a handgun. at least it had some resistance. >> as you repaired this book and searched through your mind to come up with the information and the stories, has it been helpful? was it pain to feel go through all of this? >> well, painful from the aspect of i operated mainly on the internet, and i found out i really wasn't touching on the
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items. i wanted to, so i started using the telephone, and, you know, a five minute or one question would go to an hour fifteen minute telephone conversation, and all of a sudden i started detecting the emotions and the difficult thing was bringing the emotions out. people who carried that burden all the years. it was very, very deep inside. without the trauma counseling everybody handled this differently. but it truly had an impact on their lives. >> what do you hope people take from this book? >> what i want is a balance to history. lisa ran in to a article in "usa today" that said the young between the ages of 18 and 29, 82% believe it was a conspiracy,
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and, you know, i realize that people don't like to think that a president could die at the whim of one individual, but there were some circumstances that came through, i think, one of them slowing the zack film down. everybody created a history, but this is what i call a blame society because people come up with a theory and flame lousy right-wing or lousy left-wing or it was the blacks or the hispanics or cuba or russia or organized crime. it's a sad thing. when you look at something where the minor were trapped. they didn't ask to hang the mine owner or bring a government agency in. they saidlet get these people
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out of there. that's the way we used to operate. i think when president kennedy was assassinated. it was the end of the age of innocence. >> you asked the question what do we want to do with this book? first and foremost what he said was the most important point. for me, i felt it was a heart breaking story of band of people. they were a band of brothers. they all said to me that all of these guys, there was a very small group of men, and they spent more time with each other and the kennedy family than they're own families. they ate together, they slept together, they play together, work together, and they were a band of brothers. and to me that was a very important point get in the book. >> another question here: some folks are wondering if the book is going to be turned in to a
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film. actually there's a tv special. >> yes, the discovery channel has filmed a documentary based on the book, and we actually filmed it here in dallas in june of this year. as a reunion of seven of the agents on the kennedy detail, and two of which are in the audience. toby and walt, and it was -- it was a first time these agents had ever come together and talked about this incident. so it's a very compelling film. i hope you'll watch it. it's airing december 2nd 9 p.m. eastern. >> it was originally scheduled for monday night. it's been moved. >> it's been moved for december 2nd. i would love for there to be a film. it cries out far film. if there are any film producers in the audience, you should come
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talk to us. [laughter] >> this note may sum things up well. i'm glad you are here. thank you. you did all you could. >> thank you very much. [applause] [applause] gerry and clint and lisa will be here for a book signing. you're welcome to stop by. let's see, i have a note here. what else am i supposed to say. discovery channel show. we're good. thank you for coming here to the museum and enjoying the program. you're watching booktv non-fiction authors and books every weekend on c-span2. your point in writing this book as a scientist is that given these realities, the impact that drugs have on social
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policy, on race, on our culture is oftentimes distorted by lack of evidence-based thinking. that instead people rely on about dote or on fears rather than on the fact. so is that the heart and soul of this book? >> guest: that's the heart and soul of the book. one of the things that has been troubling me for many years. drugs have been used as scapegoats whenever there are social problems. we use drugs as scapegoats. the problem for me is that people who look like me are often scapegoated more so than other folks, and as a scientist who knows the facts about drugs, that's very disturbing. >> host: okay. i would think as a black person it would be disturbing. >> guest: that's exactly what mean. > host: let's stop for a second then and try to understand something that is race-related in this regard. which you say is just an
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outrage, which is the fact that when you look at something like the 1980 and the crack cocaine use, you say, you know, people identify this as a black community problem, but in fact more whites use crack than blacks. and similarly, more blacks went to jail arrested for crack use than whites even though more whites were using the drug. how do you explain that? >> guest: i explain that by it's kind of simple. you know, the short answer is racism. this isn't new. when i say racism, i mean, that what we do is put our police resources in communities of colors, primarily black communities. you can easily get people -- catch people doing something illegal. no matter what. i drive my car, for example, i sometimes pass the speed limit. that's an illegal activity. now, if they want, they can give me a ticket. and so but that doesn't happen
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because the resources are not where i'm at most of the time. i hang out in upper west side. but if you want to catch people doing crimes, you put them in your police resources in those communities. that's what happened. i mean, this isn't new. one of the things like the crack cocaine thing. it's important to know that in the early 1900s cocaine was used by a wide number of americans. it was in coca-cola, for example. it was in a number of products. now there was concern when black people started to use cocaine, for example, i think "the new york times" wrote an article in 1914, about black folks being the new southern men is. the way cocaine was talked about or black people being under the influence of cocaine was taunted was that it caused them to be more murderous.
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it caused them to rape white women. it caused them to be uneffected by bullets. all of this nonsense. this was going on then it's going on now. the language has been tempered, but drugs are such easy scapegoats because most of the population don't use drugs. you can't say these things about alcohol. even though alcohol is active and just like any other drug like cocaine and the rest of these things. you can't say these crazy things about alcohol because many people drink alcohol. they know the effects of alcohol. fewer people use cocaine. and so you can tell these incredible stories about cocaine. you can watch this and other programs online at now on booktv, steven gillon.
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the transfer of presidency from john f. kennedy to lyndon johnson. this is about an hour. i think the question when you write a book like this, the first question that you have to answer is do we really need another book about the kennedy assassination? is there anything new to be said about the assassination of president ken i can? are there new materials that have suddenly become available not available for the past 46 years that allow us to see these event in a different light? obviously my answer to that question is yes, for selfish purposes. most of the people. -- it's


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