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A Farewell to Justice: Jim Garrison, JFK's Assassination, and the Case That Should Have Changed History Hardcover – Bargain Price, October, 2005

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In her account of Orleans Parish District Attorney Jim Garrison's investigation of and obsession with the JFK assassination, Mellen brings an astonishing amount of information to light, but even those very familiar with the topic will have trouble sorting out the tangles, turns and treachery. Garrison's complexities-an overdriven libido, a willful blind spot regarding the unsavory character of many of his investigators and a desperate relentlessness about the Kennedy investigation that likely led to his death at 70-are objectively portrayed. What is less clear, unfortunately, is the nitty gritty about his investigation. Rather than providing an outline of the events preceding and following Kennedy's assassination as uncovered by Garrison, Mellon slices up her book into topical chapters and confuses an already bewildering case by shifting timelines, authorial voices and locations with seemingly little cause. Even given a straightforward, chronological narrative of Garrison's investigation, the novice reader would have difficulty following the many threads of Garrison's inquiries: witnesses had multiple identities; research uncovered misinformation, disinformation and plain old lies; and some alleged CIA cover-ups may have been a product of Garrison's paranoia. Readers are likely to come away with a qualified admiration of Garrison and a muzzy understanding of how and why Kennedy was killed.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


"A FAREWELL TO JUSTICE is a fascinating and provocative book featuring one of the most unusual and compelling figures in the history of American jurisprudence. And though the book is massive, carefully researched, and intellectually persuasive, it also reads with the engaging particularity and narrative drive of an epic, tragic novel." - Robert Olen Butler, Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist and author of A GOOD SCENT FROM A STRANGE MOUNTAIN

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 468 pages
  • Publisher: Potomac Books Inc. (October 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1574889737
  • ASIN: B005MWN8DW
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.4 x 1.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (69 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,972,120 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

113 of 127 people found the following review helpful By Scout on January 8, 2006
Format: Hardcover
After having read Ultimate Sacrifice, Joan Mellon's book was a joy. It is by far the better written book literarily and offers a superior balance of investigative research. By contrast, Ultimate Sacrifice comes off as more CIA apologism and disinformation, trying to sell out and blame the Mafia while continuing to conceal their own involvement.

Mellon's book will suffer from the vast character assassination that the CIA aimed at her subject, Jim Garrison and his criminal investigation into the murder of John Kennedy. Owing to CIA and FBI efforts, many people failed to take Mr. Garrison seriously. Mellon thoroughly rehabilitates Garrison, proving him to be the leader of a courageous group of state law enforcement people who took on the federal government and particularly the CIA in their attempt to identify and bring to justice the real murderers of JFK.

In the process of writing about Garrison and his investigation, Mellon covers some of the same ground and furthers the evidence against the CIA. She examines Garrison's witnesses (called and uncalled in the trial of Clay Shaw) and then takes his research a step further with followup revelations from those and others. With some key witnesses, they later admitted that their testimonay to Garrison were lies, under pressure from the CIA. She also links numerous people to that organization and develops a sound thesis that mid and high level CIA personnel were the decision makers and implementors of the assassination of the American President. She details their extensive attempts to cover up their crime through later congressional investigations right up to the present.

Where Ultimate Sacrifice contends that the plot to kill JFK was strictly a Mafia affair, Mellon demonstrates that it was primarily a CIA operation.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Edit of 11 Dec 07: Since I wrote this review, another book has come out, Someone Would Have Talked: The Assassination of President John F. Kennedy and the Conspiracy to Mislead History and it conclusively documents two points:

1) JFK was assassinated by a Cuban exile team trained by CIA to assassinate Castro, that used their training against JFK, ostensibly for the Bay of Pigs mess. CIA then covered this up.

2) JFK was warned by Bobby that there were strong indications of a plot to kill him, and JFK himself blew it off, entrusting his safety to a Secret Service with no idea a professional CIA hit team was coming in.

As a former clandestine case officer for the CIA who served in Latin America and also lived in Viet-Nam during the ten coups, one of which killed Ngo Dinh Diem, I picked this book up with some trepidation.

It is an exhausting review, a truly incredible accomplishment for a single human being without any visible corporate resources for doing machine processing or visualization of all of the information.

Here's my bottom line as a 54-year old with over 30 years government service:

1) The Warren Commission, like the 9-11 Commission, blew it and mis-served the nation. They are retrospectively impeachable for dereliction of duty.

2) The Central Intelligence Agency, and Ted Shackley in particular, have a lot to answer for, and continue to lie and withhold key documents from the American people. We need the moral equivalent of a truth & reconciliation commission on covert action--I thought the Church Commission had done some of that, but clearly there is more to be done.
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184 of 220 people found the following review helpful By Eddie Kasica on October 27, 2005
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The United States of America has never truly had its equivalent of Zola's "J'Accuse!" Until now. While the Dreyfus Affair is a joke compared to the far-reaching PERMANENT effects of the National Security State execution of President John F. Kennedy(don't think they're permanent? -- pick up the damn newspaper), quite a few books on the crime have been labeled Zolaesque: "Rush to Judgement", Weisberg's "Whitewash", Sylvia Meagher's "Accessories After the Fact"(a worthy forerunner of "Farewell to Justice" -- Meagher and Mellon are sisters of heart, toughness and understanding), Anthony Summers's "Conspiracy" and, of course, Gerald Posner's "Case Closed"(just kidding). But they weren't. Not even close, because they couldn't be. The cover-up of the crime continued well into the 1990s and -- like the film or not -- it was Stone's "JFK" which caused the break in the dam. The wave of the past 10 years, beginning with the publication and media-embrace of the malignant "Case Closed", has been intensely anti-conspiracy. As all of U.S. society has seemingly moved toward the worship of power for power's sake, leading to the establishment of the Bush Reich, anti-conspiracy ideology has become its own form of totalitarianism. In the power-saturated universe of Millennial America, seething with plots, anti-plot pronouncements have become as necessary as squeals in a slaughterhouse. But, there has been a counterwave. And it's now tidal. More fresh evidence regarding 11/22/63 has become available these past years than was available to the Warren Commission, Jim Garrison or the House Assassinations Committee when they were conducting their investigations or cover-ups. We have had to be patient, and now it's pay-off time.Read more ›
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