LBJ was on board with the assassination of JFK as someone
who would stand to gain the world,
as he perceived it, by
JFK’s demise. LBJ’s main contribution to the operation
was to sign Executive
Order 11130 and appoint Allen
Dulles as the actual lead committee member on the
The Warren Commission, named
Supreme Court Justice Earl Warren (Chairman), was
the investigative body that purposely incorrectly
how JFK was murdered.
Warren, a doddering old fool at this point, didn’t
much at all during the investigation, nor did committee
members Senator Richard Russell of Georgia,
John Cooper of Kentucky, House Majority Leader Hale
Boggs, nor former World Bank President John
Zionist Arlen Spector, an attorney from
Philadelphia, was recommended by Gerald Ford to be the
for the Warren Commission and a lead
investigator. The aggressive and ambitious Spector was a
in the whitewashing of JFK’s murder.
BTW: Spector eventually
became a senator from
Pennsylvania, was a political chameleon that flip-flopped
from Democrat to Republican
then back to Democrat
whenever convenient and strongly advocated gay rights,
supported affirmative action
and supported illegal immigration amnesty.
House Minority Leader from Michigan, Gerald Ford, was
a big help to Dulles and even sponsored the “magic
bullet” baloney that Arlen Spector and Norman Redlich
invented which was accepted as plausible by his
Ford was so helpful with the
whitewashing of the investigation
that he was eventually
maneuvered into the vice-presidency and ultimately the
presidency as a reward.
Thankfully, Ford did not win his bid for a second
presidential term because of his
pardon of Nixon being
his first act as president. Americans were self-righteously
angry at Nixon for lying
about something as trivial as the
Watergate break-in and Ford suffered for it.
At least six of the fifteen lawyers working on the Warren
Commission were Jews: Arlen Spector, Samuel
Wesley Liebeler, Melvin Aaron Eisenberg, Norman
Redlich and David W. Belin. Of the twelve individuals
on the Warren Commission support staff, six were Jewish.
Norman Redlich later became Chairman of the National
Governing Council of the American
Jewish Congress and
was later in life known to become incensed at the very
mention of JFK conspiracy theories.
BTW: The American Jewish Congress suspended
activities on July 13th, 2010 after being
operating funds by Wall Street uber-scammer Bernie Madoff.
So basically, LBJ made the main assassination
Alan Dulles, the main orchestrator of the
cover-up surrounded by willing stooges. Now, why
would LBJ do
that knowing what had transpired between
JFK and Dulles if he wasn’t totally on board?
Four days after JFK’s murder, Johnson signed the
National Security Action
Memorandum 273 which
essentially confirmed JFK’s Vietnam withdrawal policy.
It would take the Gulf of Tonkin Incident, which
nine months later, to drag the nation into the
Vietnam quagmire. The Gulf of Tonkin Incident was a
fraud, or false
flag, a manufactured incident perpetrated
on August 2nd, 1964 designed to rally the American masses
war in South-East Asia; a war that America shamefully
lost after ten years of dirty fighting with 58,000
Americans killed and 240,000 wounded.
If you were to ask why we were
fighting in Vietnam at
the time, the usual answer was, “we are there to stop
if Vietnam falls all of South East
Asia will fall under the jackboot of godless communism,”
which was as big
a crock of bullshit then as fighting Al Qaeda is today.
There is no statute of limitations on murder, especially
mass murder and barbarity on the
scale of which was
perpetrated upon the innocent citizenry of Vietnam by
“We the People” of
the United States of America. The
perpetraitors of the Viet Nam debacle got away with their
But there is always hell to pay.
Let’s examine some of
the players who were pressuring
Johnson into and escalating a full scale protracted war in
Vietnam... besides the
usual Joint Chiefs of Staff... and
Robert S. McNamara who was surely qualified (wink,
wink) to become the 8th Secretary
of Defense because he
had been a Lieutenant Colonel in the Army Air Corps
during WWII; and he was the first
president of the Ford Motor Company prior to being
selected as Secretary of Defense by JFK.
The Rostow brothers,
the sons of Jewish Russian
socialists, were a big influence on LBJ. Eugene V.
Rostow was Dean of the Yale
Law School when he was
asked to become LBJ’s Under Secretary of State for
Political Affairs. Walt
Whitman Rostow had been JFK’s
Deputy National Security Advisor and became LBJ’s
Advisor on April Fool’s Day (how
poetic), 1966 until January 20, 1969. Walt had served
with the Office
of Strategic Services (OSS), under the
“Father of American Intelligence,” William “Wild Bill”
Donovan, during WW II as part of a committee that
selected German targets for U.S. bombardment.
The incendiary bombing of Dresden horrors can be laid at Rostow's feet
Immediately after Germany’s unconditional surrender,
Walt became Assistant
Chief of the German-Austrian
Economic Division in the U.S. Department of State in
Washington. He then became
the Executive Secretary of
the Economic Commission for Europe in 1947. We can
easily deduce that Walter
Rostow was one of the key
players in the murderously punitive Morgenthau Plan
that was perpetrated upon the
demolished and helpless German nation.
Walt Rostow was considered a staunch anti-communist,
which doesn’t ring true considering the man’s
were Russian born socialists. He was very prominent for
his role in shaping U.S. foreign policy
in Southeast Asia
during the 1960s. Jewish German-born Henry Kissinger
replaced Walt Rostow as U.S. National
beginning with the Nixon administration.
Jew Leslie Gelb was the director of Policy and
Planning and Arms Control for International Security
at the Department of Defense from 1967 to 1968,
and was the director of the Pentagon Papers Project
secret history of the Vietnam conflict).
Gelb became president of the Council on Foreign
Relations in 1993 and was made the President
in 2012. He co-authored a laughably ridiculous book
titled, "The Irony of Vietnam: The System
was chosen by Nixon; or rather Nixon
was directed to choose Kissinger because of his
experience as a Harvard
mover and shaker in the
Department of Government and at the Center for
International Affairs. He was a consultant
to the National
Security Council’s Operations Coordinating Board in
1955 and 1956, and the Study
Director in Nuclear
Weapons and Foreign Policy at the Council on Foreign
Relations at the same time.
Kissinger worked for the
Brothers on their Special Studies Project
where he directed the Panel on International Security
Henry’s Jewish Harvard buddy, Milton Katz, directed
Panel on International Economic and Social Objectives
and Strategy for the Special Studies Project. Katz had
been the general counsel to the European headquarters of
the Economic Cooperation Administration, which was
of the punitive Morgenthau Plan, and eventually
became the chief of the reconstruction oriented Marshall Plan.
A Jewish elitist journalist,
Walter Lippmann, was LBJ’s
most trusted informal advisor who was even presented
Medal of Freedom by LBJ on September
14th, 1964. Lippmann’s
catch-phrase, "Manufacture of
Consent" could be best illustrated by the Gulf of Tonkin
that occurred six weeks prior to his receiving
the medal. Lippmann and political scientist, Gabriel
published what was to become known as the
Almond-Lippmann Consensus that was based on three assumptions:
1. Public opinion is volatile, shifting erratically in
response to the most recent
beliefs early in the 20th century were “too pacifist in
peace and too bellicose
in war, too neutralist or
appeasing in negotiations or too intransigent.”
2. Public opinion is incoherent, lacking an organized or
a consistent structure to such an extent that the
views of U.S. citizens could be best described as non-attitudes.”
3. Public opinion
is irrelevant to the policy making
process. Political leaders ignore public opinion
because most Americans
can neither “understand
nor influence the very events upon which their
lives and happiness are known
I think the third assumption says it all regarding
politicians’ attitudes towards their constituents...in other
words, “Let them eat cake while we do what
And his point #2 is spot-on correct...!
How LBJ's Vietnam War Paralyzed His Mideast Policymakers
In the summer of 1967, Iwas a staff writer for President Lyndon B. Johnson at the White
House. I was aware of that year's Middle East crisis but, like most Americans, understood little about it other
than the fact that it involved Jews and Arabs. In that year I did not know a single Arab, and possibly LBJ did
not either. Like most Americans, I was pro-Israel, Israel having been sold to most all of us as the underdog.
around me, without exception, was pro-Israel. Johnson had a dozen or more close associates and aides who were
both Jewish and pro-Israel. There were Walt Rostow at the White House, his brother Eugene at State, and Arthur
Goldberg, ambassador to the United Nations. Other pro-Israel advisers included Abe Fortas, associate justice of the Supreme
Court; Democratic Party fundraiser Abraham Feinberg; White House counsels Leo White and Jake Jacobsen; White House
writers Richard Goodwin and Ben Wattenberg; domestic affairs aide Larry Levinson; and John P. Roche, known as
Johnson's intellectual-in-residence and an avid supporter of Israel.
Everyone around me, without exception,
I did not "know," but could sense, that events of great
portent were transpiring. I heard rumors of CIA Director Richard Helms sending a warning to LBJ that the Israelis were
about to attack, and the president getting word from Moscow that if the Israelis attacked any Arab country, the
Soviets would go to that nation's defense.
I could see the comings and goings of Abe Fortas
and Arthur Goldberg, and I knew that Walt Rostow, in particular, had close Israeli connections, and met frequently
with Israeli Embassy Minister Ephraim (Eppy) Evron.
On occasion I saw a strikingly attractive
blonde woman who, I learned, was an ardent supporter of Israel and a woman of whom the president was fond. Her
background sounded like material from a spy novel. She was born Mathilde Galland in 1927in Italy, where she was
reared as a Roman Catholic. Then, when her family returned to her father's birthplace in Switzerland, she became
While a student in Geneva, she fell in love with a young Bulgarian Jew, David Danon,
who had been brought up in Palestine and exiled by the British for his association with the Irgun Zvai Leumi, a Jewish
terrorist group led by Menachem Begin. Danon was studying to become a medical doctor, but spent most of his time
recruiting and carrying out secret Irgun operations throughout Western Europe.
In later interviews
with former Time reporter Donald Neff, Mathilde said that as a teenager she saw Danon as a dashing and
heroic figure, an activist dedicating his life to the founding of a Jewish state in Palestine. He was a personal
friend of the Stern Gang terrorists, led by Yitzhak Shamir, who killed British resident minister Lord Walter Moyne
in Cairo during World War II, and the Irgun terrorists who blew up the King David Hotel in Jerusalem in 1946,with
heavy loss of life. As bloody as these actions were, Mathilde said, she saw them as heroic. They represented the
depth of the convictions of Danon and the Irgunists—and drew her to them.
so enamored of the Jewish struggle and of Danon's daring undercover operations in Europe that she converted to Judaism
and married Danon. Then she, too, became an Irgun agent.
Reporter Neff, in his book entitled Warriors
for Jerusalem: The Six Days That Changed the Middle East, documents Mathilde's role as a young "gun-runner"
for the Jewish terrorist group. "As a seemingly innocent petite and pretty blonde out for a bicycle ride
along Switzerland's borders," wrote Neff, "she in reality was taking messages and explosives into neighboring
France and Italy—to be passed on to the Irgunists.
Five years after the creation of Israel
obviated the need for pretty blonde gunrunners, Mathilde received a Ph.D. in genetics at the University of Geneva
in 1953.She and Danon then moved to Israel, where she became a cancer researcher at the Weizmann Institute. After
the birth of a daughter, she and Danon separated. While still at Weizmann, however, she met and later married
the rich—and 20 years her senior—Arthur Krim, a motion picture executive who became finance chairman
for the Democratic National Committee.
American Jews such as Krim and Abraham Feinberg—a
New York banker and the first Jew to become a prominent moneyraiser in presidential campaigns—were by then bringing
in well over half of the Democratic Party's funds. Thus it was natural that such fund-raisers would become very
important to many Democratic candidates—and particularly to the leader of the Democratic Party, Lyndon B.
LBJ often invited the Krims to his Texas ranch. There also were many instances in which
Arthur and Mathilde were guests at the White House, and other times when, for many days running, Mathilde—without
her husband—was a guest there. The Krims built a house near the LBJ ranch known as Mathilde's house, and
Johnson often traveled there by helicopter.
Advice and Counsel LBJ Part 2
The Krims, as well as other Jewish Americans who were
closely associated with Johnson, advised and counseled him on the events leading up to the Six-Day War of June
1967. On the Memorial Day weekend in May 1967, Mathilde and her husband were guests at the LBJ ranch. On arrival
at the ranch, Johnson learned that the Soviets had warned the U.S. that if Israel attacked an Arab state, the
Soviets would go to the aid of that state. The State Department was preparing a message for LBJ to send to Israel.
awaiting the draft message, Johnson got behind the wheel of his Lincoln Continental and took Mathilde and Arthur
Krim for a drive over the hill country. They were at a neighbor's house when an aide brought Johnson a message
drafted by the State Department for Israeli Prime Minister Levi Eshkol. It relayed to Israel Moscow's warning that "if
Israel starts military action, the Soviet Union will extend help to the attacked party."
reassuring Eshkol of America's interest in Israel's safety, the draft message cautioned: "It is essential
that Israel not take any preemptive military action and thereby make itself responsible for the initiation of hostilities."
The president strengthened the warning by adding two words so that the sentence read, "It is essential that
Israel JUST MUST NOT take any preemptive military action. . ."
On June 3, Johnson traveled
to New York to deliver a speech at a Democratic Party fund-raising dinner. He moved on to a $1,000-a-plate dinner
dance, sponsored by the President's Club of New York, whose chairman was Arthur Krim. While at the table, fund-raiser
Abe Feinberg leaned over the shoulder of Mathilde Krim, seated next to Johnson, and whispered: "Mr. President,
it [Israel's attack] can't be held any longer. It's going to be within the next 24 hours."
June 4, Johnson went to the home of his close adviser and friend, Justice Abe Fortas. The following day, June 5,
Rostow woke Johnson with a phone call at 4:30 a.m. "War has broken out," Rostow said. The Israelis had
attacked Egypt and Syria.
Mathilde Krim was a guest at the White House and, before going to
the Oval Office, and apparently before waking Lady Bird or notifying anyone else, Johnson dropped by the bedroom
where Mathilde was sleeping and gave her the news: "The war has started."
At 7:45 a.m.,
Johnson talked—for the first time—on the hot line with Moscow. Soviet Premier Aleksi Kosygin expressed
the hope that the United States would restrain Israel. Both leaders vowed to work for a cease-fire.
that day—June 5, 1967—I walked the White House corridors as the telephone lines and news tickers recorded
developments of the first morning of the war that would change the Middle East. I learned that in the war's first
hours, Israeli planes had destroyed the air forces of both Egypt and Syria on the ground.
Glee LBJ Part 3
Several U.S. officials in a State Department Operations Room briefing could not conceal
their glee over Israel's successes. With a wide smile, Eugene Rostow said, "Gentlemen, gentlemen, do not forget
that we are neutral in word, thought and deed."
At the State Department's noon briefing
on June 5, press spokesman Robert J. McCloskey repeated those words for reporters. (Since the U.S. was not neutral
but totally supportive of Israel, however, this statement would need—over the next several weeks—endless
Also on June 5, Arthur Krim wrote a memo to the president saying: "Many
arms shipments are packed and ready to go to Israel, but are being held up. It would be helpful if these could be released."
Johnson got the shipments on their way.
Walt Rostow, in a memo to the president, referred to
the results of Israel's surprise attack on Egypt and Syria as "the first day's turkey shoot." On June
6, in another memo to the president, Walt Rostow recommended that the Israelis not be forced to withdraw from the
territories they had seized—short of peace treaties with the Arab states.
Israelis go fast enough and the Soviets get worried enough," he wrote, "a simple cease-fire might be
the best answer. This would mean that we could use the de facto situation on the ground to try to negotiate not
a return to armistice lines but a definitive peace in the Middle East."
still a guest in the White House, left for meetings in New York. Before departing, however, she wrote out a statement
supportive of Israel which she asked the president to deliver "verbatim to the American people." Johnson
was sufficiently impressed with her comments to, later in the day, read some of them to Secretary of State Dean
Rusk. But the president did not, as she had asked, read them to the American people.
treaty-bound to come to the aid of Egypt and Syria if either were attacked, had done so and, on June 7, Israel
captured the Old City of Jerusalem. Also on June 7, Wattenberg and Levinson wrote in a memo to Johnson that the
U.N. might attempt "to sell Israel down the river."
They urged LBJ to support Israel's
claim to the territories seized militarily. They referred to McCloskey's statement that the U.S. was neutral,
suggesting LBJ issue a statement affirming total support for Israel which, they said, might stop American Jews
from meeting in Lafayette Square to protest the "neutrality" statement.
While Johnson never
minded getting pro-Israel advice from such close friends as Mathilde Krim or Abe Fortas, he apparently resented
advice from relatively minor White House staffers such as Wattenberg and Levinson. Seeing Levinson he stormed:
Zionist dupe! You and Wattenberg are Zionist dupes in the White House! Why can't you see I'm doing all I can for
Israel! That's what you should be telling people when they ask for a message from the president for their rally."
As LBJ abruptly stormed off, Levinson reports, he stood there, "shaken to the marrow of my bones."
on the night of June 7, the USS Liberty , a Navy "ferret" ship equipped to monitor electronic communications, had approached within sight of the
Gaza Strip so the National Security Agency personnel aboard could intercept the military communications jamming
the airwaves. The president retired at 11:30 p.m., but White House logs reported that at one minute to midnight
he got a call from Mathilde Krim, still in New York.
By June 8, despite U.S. and Soviet demands
for a cease-fire, the Israelis were planning one more attack to take Syria's Golan Heights. Perhaps to prevent
U.S. intelligence from learning of their plan, despite Syria's acceptance of the cease-fire, the Israelis dispatched
planes to the USS Liberty. One roared over the Liberty so closely that the portholes of the aircraft's
reconnaissance cameras were clearly visible. Lieutenant James M. Ennes, deck officer, saw on its wings Israel's
insignia, the Star of David.
The Liberty Assault LBJ Part 4
Ennes glanced at the U.S. flag atop his ship's tall mast.
If he could see the Israeli pilots in their cockpits, he reasoned, the pilots could certainly see the large U.S.
flag. It was not long after the last of several such Israeli reconnaissance flights, however, that an Israeli
aircraft swooped down and fired rockets directly at The Liberty. Rocket fragments and 30mm bullets punched
through the heavy deck plating—and through the flesh of the stunned crewmen. Then more planes—with
cannon and napalm—turned the Liberty into a floating hell of flames and screaming men.
Israeli attacks killed 34 Americans and wounded 171. The ship was partly flooded when an Israeli torpedo boat
hit the U.S. ship with a torpedo below the water line. Another machine-gunned the ship's life rafts when the crew
tried to launch them.
Only by a miracle did The Liberty remain afloat. But its threat
to Israel's plans was finished. The next day, June 9, Israeli forces attacked and captured the Golan Heights. On
Saturday, June 10, the war's sixth day, Israel agreed to a cease-fire.
It was Rostow who first
notified Johnson of the assault on the Liberty. Asked who did it, Rostow said he did not know. Later the
Israelis said they had done it, by mistake.
Johnson sent an immediate report to Kosygin that the Israelis
had torpedoed a U.S. ship. Thus the Kremlin now knew about the Israeli attack, but the American people did not.
From the beginning, the Johnson administration covered it up. Surviving crew members were separated from each other
and the Navy was ordered to make certain that no survivor talked with any reporter—or to anyone else—about
the assault on the USS Liberty .
It went virtually unnoticed. Not only the crew of the USS Liberty , but all Americans were victims. Johnson and most of those who entered and left the Oval Office were oriented toward
Israel. For that matter, I too, was ready and eager to believe in 1967 that the Arabs, not the Israelis, had started
the war and that the bombing raid on the USS Liberty was not intentional, but a mistake.
there can be no moral justification for the White House cover-up orders to the Navy after the assault on the Liberty,
from hindsight Johnson's political motivation is obvious. It was the same motivation that led him subsequently
to listen to the Jewish friends and advisers who urged him not to put any pressure on the Israelis to relinquish
territories they had seized in the Six-Day War.
In 1967, President Johnson felt he needed all
the support he could get to I 'win" in Vietnam. Many American Jews were liberals outspokenly opposed to the
war there. Johnson was told if he gave all out support to Israel—which would include ignoring the Israeli
attack on the Libertyinfluential Jewish Americans would stop opposing his Vietnam policies.
a memo to the president, Wattenberg, whose parents had moved to the U. S. from Palestine and who was known as
a strong supporter of the Jewish state, said flatly that if the president came out with strong support for Israel,
he would win American Jewish support for the war in Vietnam. Many American Jewish leaders are "doves" on
Vietnam, Wattenberg wrote, but "hawks" on a war with Arab states.
for Johnson LBJ Part 5
"You stand to be cheered now by those (American Jewish leaders) who were jeering
last week," Wattenberg wrote the president. He added that the Mideast crisis could be "a bonus" for
Johnson. All-out support of Israel, he predicted, would "help turn around 'the other war'—the domestic
dissatisfaction about Vietnam."
The support given by the American Jewish leaders "was
welcome to the president," as reporter Donald Neff observed, when at every turn he was being attacked by critics,
particularly in the media, of his Vietnam policy.
I was, at the time, a typical American. I
was convinced back then that the Arabs had started the war and deserved what they got. I didn't try to reason
how, if the Arabs had started the war, they were surprised with their air forces on the ground and how it was that Israel
so easily seized all of Palestine, including the rest of Jerusalem. Instead, like millions of Americans, I was
thrilled by the might of "little Israel."
Yet, despite the euphoria around me, what
I saw in the White House planted questions in my mind. As Americans we had just passed through a dangerous Middle
East conflict that threatened to explode into World War III. There were two parties to the conflict, Arabs and
Jews. But for weeks on end I had seen only one set of advisers who could call or see Johnson whenever they pleased.
The Arabs had no voice, no representation, no access, whatsoever.
It was only later that I
came to reflect on how America, which devoted so much of the efforts of its "best and brightest" to the
problem of Vietnam, had in 1967 quite unwittingly stumbled into a Middle East quagmire that, long after the fall
of Saigon, would continue to enmesh U.S. soldiers and diplomats, and project an image of double standards and insincerity
onto U.S. diplomacy all over the world.
Far more than his failed policies in Vietnam, the Middle East policies that LBJ
allowed to fall into place in the June 1967 war would remain to haunt the U.S. for decades to come.
Grace Halsell, a Washington-based writer, is the author of
Journey to Jerusalem and Prophecy and Politics, as well as several other works of nonfiction.
Our First Jewish President Lyndon Johnson? – an update!!
A few months ago, the Associated Press reported that newly released tapes from US president Lyndon
Johnson’s White House office showed LBJ’s “personal and often emotional connection to Israel.” The
news agency pointed out that during the Johnson presidency (1963-1969), “the United States became Israel’s chief
diplomatic ally and primary arms supplier.”
But the news report does
little to reveal the full historical extent of Johnson’s actions on behalf of the Jewish people and the State of
Israel. Most students of the Arab-Israeli conflict can identify Johnson as the president during the 1967
war. But few know about LBJ’s actions to rescue hundreds of endangered Jews during the Holocaust –
actions that could have thrown him out of Congress and into jail. Indeed, the title of “Righteous Gentile”
is certainly appropriate in the case of the Texan, whose centennial year is being commemorated this year.
Appropriately enough, the annual Jerusalem Conference announced this week that it will honor Johnson.
Historians have revealed that Johnson, while serving as a young congressman
in 1938 and 1939, arranged for visas to be supplied to Jews in Warsaw, and oversaw the apparently illegal immigration
of hundreds of Jews through the port of Galveston, Texas….
resource for uncovering LBJ’s pro-Jewish activity is the unpublished 1989 doctoral thesis by University of
Texas student Louis Gomolak, “Prologue: LBJ’s Foreign Affairs Background, 1908-1948.” Johnson’s
activities were confirmed by other historians in interviews with his wife, family members and political associates.
Research into Johnson’s personal history indicates that he inherited
his concern for the Jewish people from his family. His aunt Jessie Johnson Hatcher, a major influence on LBJ,
was a member of the Zionist Organization of America. According to Gomolak, Aunt Jessie had nurtured LBJ’s commitment
to befriending Jews for 50 years. As young boy, Lyndon watched his politically active grandfather “Big Sam”
and father “Little Sam” seek clemency for Leo Frank, the Jewish victim of a blood libel in Atlanta.
Frank was lynched by a mob in 1915, and the Ku Klux Klan in Texas threatened to kill the Johnsons. The Johnsons
later told friends that Lyndon’s family hid in their cellar while his father and uncles stood guard with
shotguns on their porch in case of KKK attacks. Johnson’s speech writer later stated, “Johnson often
cited Leo Frank’s lynching as the source of his opposition to both anti-Semitism and isolationism.”
Already in 1934 – four years before Chamberlain’s Munich sellout to Hitler – Johnson was keenly
alert to the dangers of Nazism and presented a book of essays, ‘Nazism: An Assault on Civilization’,
to the 21-year-old woman he was courting, Claudia Taylor – later known as “Lady Bird” Johnson.
It was an incredible engagement present.
FIVE DAYS after taking
office in 1937, LBJ broke with the “Dixiecrats” and supported an immigration bill that would naturalize
illegal aliens, mostly Jews from Lithuania and Poland. In 1938, Johnson was told of a young Austrian Jewish musician who
was about to be deported from the United States. With an element of subterfuge, LBJ sent him to the US Consulate in Havana
to obtain a residency permit. Erich Leinsdorf, the world famous musician and conductor, credited LBJ for saving his live.
That same year, LBJ warned Jewish friend, Jim Novy, that European Jews faced annihilation.
“Get as many Jewish people as possible out of Germany and Poland,” were Johnson’s instructions. Somehow,
Johnson provided him with a pile of signed immigration papers that were used to get 42 Jews out of Warsaw. But that
wasn’t enough. According to historian James M. Smallwood, Congressman Johnson used legal and sometimes illegal methods
to smuggle “hundreds of Jews into Texas, using Galveston as the entry port. Enough money could buy false passports
and fake visas in Cuba, Mexico and other Latin American countries. Johnson smuggled boatloads and planeloads of Jews into
Texas. He hid them in the Texas National Youth Administration. Johnson saved at least four or five hundred Jews, possibly
During World War II Johnson joined Novy at a small Austin gathering
to sell $65,000 in war bonds. According to Gomolak, Novy and Johnson then raised a very “substantial sum for arms
for Jewish underground fighters in Palestine.” One source cited by the historian reports that “Novy and Johnson
had been secretly shipping heavy crates labeled ‘Texas Grapefruit’ – but containing arms – to Jewish
underground ‘freedom fighters’ in Palestine.”
ON JUNE 4, 1945, Johnson visited Dachau. According
to Smallwood, Lady Bird later recalled that when her husband returned home, “he was still shaken, stunned, terrorized,
and bursting with an overpowering revulsion and incredulous horror at what he had seen.”
A decade later while serving in the Senate, Johnson blocked the Eisenhower administration’s attempts
to apply sanctions against Israel following the 1956 Sinai Campaign. “The indefatigable Johnson had never ceased
pressure on the administration,” wrote I.L. “Si” Kenen, the head of AIPAC at the time.
As Senate majority leader, Johnson consistently blocked the anti-Israel initiatives of his fellow Democrat, William
Fulbright, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Among Johnson’s closest advisers during
this period were several strong pro-Israel advocates, including Benjamin Cohen (who 30 years earlier was the liaison
between Supreme Court justice Louis Brandeis and Chaim Weizmann) and Abe Fortas, the legendary Washington “insider.”
Johnson’s concern for the Jewish people continued through his presidency. Soon after taking office in
the aftermath of John F. Kennedy’s assassination in 1963, Johnson told an Israeli diplomat, “You have
lost a very great friend, but you have found a better one.” Just one month after succeeding Kennedy,
LBJ attended the December 1963 dedication of the Agudas Achim Synagogue in Austin. Novy opened the ceremony by
saying to Johnson, “We can’t thank him enough for all those Jews he got out of Germany during the days
of Hitler.” Lady Bird would later describe the day, according to Gomolak: “Person after person
plucked at my sleeve and said, ‘I wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for him. He helped me get
out.'” Lady Bird elaborated, “Jews had been woven into the warp and woof of all [Lyndon’s] years.”
The PRELUDE to the 1967 war was a terrifying period for Israel, with the US
State Department led by the historically unfriendly Dean Rusk urging an evenhanded policy despite Arab threats
and acts of aggression. Johnson held no such illusions. After the war he placed
the blame firmly on Egypt: “If
a single act of folly was more responsible for this explosion than any other, it was the arbitrary and dangerous announced
decision [by Egypt that the Strait of Tiran would be closed [to Israeli ships and Israeli-bound cargo].”
Kennedy was the first president to approve the sale of defensive US weapons to Israel,
specifically Hawk anti-aircraft missiles. But Johnson approved tanks and fighter jets, all vital after the 1967 war when
France imposed a freeze on sales to Israel. Yehuda Avner recently
described on these pages prime minister Levi Eshkol’s
successful appeal for these weapons on a visit to the LBJ ranch. Israel won the 1967 war, and Johnson worked to make
sure it also won the peace. “I sure as hell want to be careful and not run out on little Israel,” Johnson said
in a March 1968 conversation with his ambassador to the United Nations, Arthur Goldberg, according to White House tapes
Soon after the 1967 war, Soviet premier Aleksei Kosygin
asked Johnson at the Glassboro Summit why the US supported Israel when there were 80 million Arabs and only three million
Israelis. “Because it is a right thing to do,” responded the straight-shooting Texan.
The crafting of UN Resolution 242 in November 1967 was done under Johnson’s scrutiny. The call for
“secure and recognized boundaries” was critical. The American and British drafters of the resolution opposed
Israel returning all the territories captured in the war. In September 1968, Johnson explained, “We are not the ones
to say where other nations should draw lines between them that will assure each the greatest security. It is clear, however,
that a return to the situation of 4 June 1967 will not bring peace. There must be secure and there must be recognized
borders. Some such lines must be agreed to by the neighbors involved.” Goldberg later noted, “Resolution
242 in no way refers to Jerusalem, and this omission was deliberate.” This historic diplomacy was conducted under
Johnson’s stewardship, as Goldberg related in oral history to the Johnson Library. “I must say for Johnson,”
Goldberg stated. “He gave me great personal support.”
David Johnson, a professor of history at Brooklyn College, recently wrote in The New York Sun, Johnson’s policies
stemmed more from personal concerns – his friendship with leading Zionists, his belief that America had
a moral obligation to bolster Israeli security and his conception of Israel as a frontier land much like his home
state of Texas. His personal concerns led him to intervene when he felt that the State or Defense departments
had insufficiently appreciated Israel’s diplomatic or military needs.”
President Johnson firmly pointed American policy in a pro-Israel direction. In a historical context,
the American emergency airlift to Israel in 1973, the constant diplomatic support, the economic and military assistance
and the strategic bonds between the two countries can all be credited to the seeds planted by LBJ.
maternal ancestors, the Huffmans, apparently migrated to Frederick, Maryland from Germany sometime in the mid-eighteenth
century. Later they moved to Bourbon, Kentucky and eventually settled in Texas in the mid-to-late nineteenth
According to Jewish
law, if a person’s mother is Jewish, then that person is automatically Jewish, regardless of the father’s
ethnicity or religion. The facts indicate that both of Lyndon Johnson’s great-grandparents, on the
maternal side, were Jewish.
These were the grandparents of Lyndon’s
mother, Rebecca Baines. Their names were John S. Huffman and Mary Elizabeth Perrin. John Huffman’s
mother was Suzanne Ament, a common Jewish name. Perrin is also a common Jewish name.
Huffman and Perrin had a daughter, Ruth Ament Huffman, who married Joseph Baines and together they had a
daughter, Rebekah Baines, Lyndon Johnson’s mother. The line of Jewish mothers can be traced back three generations
in Lyndon Johnson’s family tree. There is little doubt that he was Jewish.
by Morris Smith