Harvey and Lee (book review)

Armstrong’s “Harvey and Lee” is an absolutely astonishing book, worth reading in every aspect.

His central thesis, and it is not original to him, is that when Marina Oswald spoke of two husbands – kind Lee and evil Harvey – other than swapping the names she was saying nothing more than the literal truth. There was a Lee Harvey Oswald, and his double, a so far nameless hungarian communist boy recruited in adolescence and trained along with Lee to be a CIA infiltrator.

It isn’t even a far-out idea since there are documented cases of the use of doubles, twins and impersonators in espionage going back centuries. What sets Harvey and Lee apart is the exhaustive scholarship that Armstrong put into the work.

After reading it, and matching to my own relatively encyclopedic knowledge of the JFK conpsiracy murder case, I find the book to be in toto unimpeachale. Where there are typos or very rare flaws in reasoning these are such utterly trivial parts of the thesis that they don’t in any way detrat from it being not only entertaining but extremely scholarly.

Perhaps the single real controversy to my mind would be the murder of JD Tippit which is attributed to the somewhat thuggish and certainly ultra violent “real” Lee Oswald. There were witnesses who described multiple assailants and multiple descriptions of the lone assailant where a single attacker was allegedly witnessed. And there are facts that Armstrong states, and which are correct, but which do not necessarily attain their real significance – such as Tippit having worked at the Texas movie house where the hungarian Oswald was arrested with such strange procedures.

However, the fact that the incredibly detailed manuscript lends itself to microscopic detailed critique is itself a further recommendation.

As with JFK and the Unspeakable, this is one of those indispensable books on JFK’s murder that need to be looked at closely and used as reference.

Get yourself a copy of this and the unedited Evidence of Revision and listen to one as you read the other.



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