Deathbed Confession: FBI and NYPD Responsible for Malcolm X Assassination

Yves here. Yet another confirmation of FBI and police interference in domestic politics, this the shameful assassination of Malcolm X. Not surprisingly, this account hasn’t gotten the attention it warrants.

By Thomas Neuburger. Originally published at DownWithTyranny!

Followers tend to Malcolm X as he lies mortally wounded on the stage of the Audubon Ballroom in New York City, February 21, 1965. Malcom X was shot 15 times at point blank range.

A half-century after the death of Civil Right activist Malcolm X, lawyers revealed new evidence of NYPD and FBI involvement in his assassination.

The Manhattan District Attorney’s office, which had earlier re-opened the investigation in response to a Netflix documentary, said that “the review of this matter is active and ongoing.”

The new evidence comes by way of a deathbed confession by a former NYPD policeman who gave a letter to his family saying that he, the FBI and the NYPD were responsible for the assassination. His role, he claimed, was to make sure that Malcolm X’s security detail was previously arrested so that there would be no door security at the ballroom where the civil rights activist was speaking the night he was murdered.

From Reuters:

Members of Malcolm X’s family have made public what they described as a letter written by a deceased police officer stating that the New York Police Department and FBI were behind the 1965 killing of the famed Black activist and civil rights advocate.

Raymond Wood’s letter stated that he had been pressured by his NYPD supervisors to lure two members of Malcolm X’s security detail into committing crimes that resulted in their arrest just days before the fatal shooting. Those arrests kept the two men from managing door security at the ballroom and was part of conspiracy between the NYPD and FBI to have Malcolm killed, according to the letter.

“Under the direction of my handlers, I was told to encourage leaders and members of the civil rights groups to commit felonious acts,” Wood’s letter stated.

“What Everyone Knows to Be True” Is a Lie

What emerges from this revelation and those in the Netflix documentary is the clear possibility that the FBI and NYPD masterminded the assassination ultimately carried out by Malcolm X’s enemies in the Nation of Islam, from which he had recently broken.

In other words, “what everyone knows to be true” — that Malcolm X was killed as a result of a feud with the Nation of Islam — is a lie.

Here’s the “official” version of the murder, courtesy of Wikipedia:

On February 19, 1965, Malcolm X told interviewer Gordon Parks that the Nation of Islam was actively trying to kill him. On February 21, 1965, he was preparing to address the OAAU in Manhattan’s Audubon Ballroom when someone in the 400-person audience yelled, “Nigger! Get your hand outta my pocket!”[189][190][191] As Malcolm X and his bodyguards tried to quell the disturbance,[N] a man rushed forward and shot him once in the chest with a sawed-off shotgun[192][193] and two other men charged the stage firing semi-automatic handguns.[190] Malcolm X was pronounced dead at 3:30 pm, shortly after arriving at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital.[191] The autopsy identified 21 gunshot wounds to the chest, left shoulder, arms and legs, including ten buckshot wounds from the initial shotgun blast.[194]

One gunman, Nation of Islam member Talmadge Hayer (also known as Thomas Hagan), was beaten by the crowd before police arrived.[195][196] Witnesses identified the other gunmen as Nation members Norman 3X Butler and Thomas 15X Johnson.[197] All three were convicted of murder in March 1966 and sentenced to life in prison.[198][199] At trial Hayer confessed, but refused to identify the other assailants except to assert that they were not Butler and Johnson.[200] In 1977 and 1978, he signed affidavits reasserting Butler’s and Johnson’s innocence, naming four other Nation members of Newark’s Mosque No. 25 as participants in the murder or its planning.[201][202][203][204] These affidavits did not result in the case being reopened. In 2020, the Netflix docuseries Who Killed Malcolm X? explored the assassination, which launched a new review of the murder by the office of the Manhattan District Attorney.[205]

And here’s what’s been added by the deathbed confession, courtesy of WABC in New York:

WASHINGTON HEIGHTS, Manhattan (WABC) — Fifty-six years after the death of Malcolm X, lawyers revealed what they called new evidence of a conspiracy, perpetrated by the NYPD and the FBI to assassinate the Civil Rights activist in Harlem.

Ray Wood was an undercover [NYPD] police officer at the time – his family and their attorney now claim Wood wrote a letter on his deathbed confessing the NYPD and the FBI conspired to kill the Civil Rights activist….

Wood’s family says in the letter that Wood wrote, he stated his responsibility was to ensure Malcolm X’s security detail was arrested days before the assassination.

The letter further states this move would guarantee Malcolm X not having door security at the Audubon Ballroom where he was killed….

Three Nation of Islam members were convicted in Malcolm X’s murder. Last year the Manhattan DA began a review of those convictions after meeting with representatives of the Innocence Project

Now, with the new evidence, the DA’s office says “the review of this matter is active and ongoing.”

Again, according to the Reuters report, the letter has since been released to the public.


First, it’s no secret that American security agencies like the CIA use non-CIA assets — in those days, often virulently anti-Castro Cuba expatriates — to carry out their operations. You can see echoes of this practice in the profile of the Watergate burglars.

Gordon Liddy (ex-FBI) and Howard Hunt (ex-CIA with a specialty in “regime change in Latin America”) were the planning team for Nixon’s “plumbers” operation, which, among other activities, carried out the Watergate break-in itself.

Directly involved in the break-in — the “boots on the ground” — were James McCord (ex-CIA), Frank Sturgis (ex-CIA and a undercover anti-Castro Cuban operative), Virgilio Gonzáles (Cuban-born “political activist”), Eugenio Martínez (a “member of the anti-Castro movement”) and Bernard Barker (an “undercover operative in CIA-directed plots to overthrow” Castro).

It would make perfect sense if the FBI and NYPD used Malcolm X’s political enemies to carry out the assassination-by-proxy of a man whom then-FBI director J. Edgar Hoover feared and hated.

I have to say, a deathbed confession attested to by so many people seems compelling evidence of their involvement.

Second, do you trust the Manhattan District Attorney to act against the interests of the NYPD in this case? The proper outcome would be murder indictments, even against the dead, and a conspiracy investigation, a “truth commission” if you will.

What are the odds of that happening? I’m surprised the case has gotten even this much coverage, which is very little. If you watch Chris Hayes (MSNBC) or Chris Cuomo (CNN) for coverage this week, I’ll bet you’ll watch in vain. My guess is, this is the first and only place you’ll read about it.

Finally, the 1960s were a time of widespread anti-Establishment rebellion. What are the implications of this revelation for the rebellious phase we’re obviously entering now?

American security state freely commits murder, even of American citizens, in every other country of the world. Why would it stop at murder in our own if it hasn’t in the past?


(I’ve launched a Substack site to greet the post-Trump era. You can get more information here and here. If you decide to sign up — it’s free — my thanks to you!)

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


  1. kj1313

    This has been rumored for awhile. Between this, Hampton’s murder, the Move bombing every big city police force, FBI should be abolished wholesale. There is no reforming these agencies who rely on terrorizing the poor and POC communities.

    1. cocomaan

      Yes, but which political party has the will to take on these agencies?

      For instance, it’s remarkable how wrapped up Democrats are in FBI worship today considering that Maxine Waters once went after the CIA for running drugs into her district.

      There’s been a real party reversal. Once, the FBI and the CIA and the alphabet soup of intelligence agencies were the domain of Neo-conservatives like Hoover and Nixon. Now they’ve transformed into something else.

      I’ll never forget Tim Kaine, in the 2016 vice presidential debate, calling for an “Intelligence Surge”. It was when I realized something had changed.

  2. Amfortas the hippie

    like so many other facets of our ongoing collapse, the idea that fbi/cia/cops in general are the enemy is just too big for most people to accept, no matter the evidence.
    long ago, when i rescued a young woman(she 17, me 18) from the side of the road, and her locally powerful father set the dogs on me…i was astonished that no one believed me that the persecution was even happening.
    similarly with the idea of peak oil/peak climate/peak economics….or the existence of mob like entities at every level of power in this country….or the cruel indifference/active evil of our “welfare system”….
    people decide, at some level of consciousness, not to see it.
    because to see that one thing…one part of the horror…would open a door in their minds that leads to other doors on broken hinges…and before long they would feel compelled to do something….which would totally disrupt whatever comfort they have managed to find in this hard old world.
    in ’05, when hurricane rita tore through the warehouses of east houston, and we…way out here, not a drop of rain…didn’t have the supply trucks for a week…and ran out of gas, groceries and even beer…i thought it a golden opportunity to lobby for support of local ag…maybe even some modicum of local autarky in general.
    the supply lines were so obviously shaky.
    but i was an “alarmist” and an “hysteric”.
    but it keeps happening…the latest incident due to an arctic blast that was counterintuitively caused by global warming.
    but it’s easier to blame communist windmills and non-existent green new deals.
    ” “I say unto you: one must still have chaos in oneself to be able to give birth to a dancing star. I say unto you: you still have chaos in yourselves.
    Alas, the time is coming when man will no longer give birth to a star. Alas, the time of the most despicable man is coming, he that is no longer able to despise himself. Behold, I show you the last man.
    ‘What is love? What is creation? What is longing? What is a star?’ thus asks the last man, and blinks.
    The earth has become small, and on it hops the last man, who makes everything small. His race is as ineradicable as the flea; the last man lives longest.
    ‘We have invented happiness,’say the last men, and they blink. They have left the regions where it was hard to live, for one needs warmth. One still loves one’s neighbor and rubs against him, for one needs warmth…
    One still works, for work is a form of entertainment. But one is careful lest the entertainment be too harrowing. One no longer becomes poor or rich: both require too much exertion. Who still wants to rule? Who obey? Both require too much exertion.
    No shepherd and one herd! Everybody wants the same, everybody is the same: whoever feels different goes voluntarily into a madhouse.
    ‘Formerly, all the world was mad,’ say the most refined, and they blink…
    One has one’s little pleasure for the day and one’s little pleasure for the night: but one has a regard for health.
    ‘We have invented happiness,’ say the last men, and they blink.””

    1. zagonostra

      Who needs coffee to get going in the morning when you can get a dose of Nietzsche? Now if they can just publicly admit that the gov was involved in the assassination of the Kennedy’s we can get to the atonement part. But then that would implicate some people that are still living…

    2. Tirednurse

      Thank you for writing this. I share news with my co-workers, fellow nurses mostly. Two of try to laugh off what I share and tell me my politics are crazy. A third just avoids talking about news with me. A fourth can’t get enough MSNBC.But I fifth agrees and share what she knows. To paraphrase Meatloaf badly, 1 out of 5 ain’t bad.

    1. Alex Cox

      Howard Hunt made a deathbed confession in writing that he had been involved in the JFK assassination.

      Somehow the MSM missed that story, too.

      1. drumlin woodchuckles

        It reminds me of the unfunny political joke . . .

        Who killed Dr. Martin Luther King?

        Lee Harvey Oswald, acting alone.

        Hey! He killed Kennedy, didn’t he?

  3. Tom Stone

    This is not a surprise to anyone who lived through those times and paid attention.
    I watched heroin flood berkeley in 1968, suddenly a lot of new people showed up, no pot was to be found and heroin was everywhere, china white and cheap.
    Cointelpro never went away, it eventually morphed into total information awareness and “Fusion Centers”.

    1. rob

      just like in new york in 1986.
      suddenly, there was no weed to be found, but coke and crack was everywhere and cheap.
      People went from free basing their own coke to having crack …. everywhere…
      by the nineties, people like gary webb and mike ruppert were writing of the deal the cia had with the narcos of central america,and the bloods and the crips here… to flood the market with coke, and how they were flying in hundreds of tons of coke into the us into places like mena arkansas on military c-130’s….., to fund the contras , and other “black ops”… while the “conservatives” in congress were writing the drug laws in washington and madatory minimum sentencing was the rage….. ”
      pressure from above; pressure from below
      It is an old tactic.
      Not only do people suffer from the “class war” being waged on them ,but in the process, the warriors…. destroy the fabric of our society…. good riddance to the gasbag limbaugh… and all the idiots like george bush and newt gingrich… and the rest of team red… who in a bipartisan manner… did their part in destroying america. and creating today…
      and those in the courts used the precedents set in “the drug war” to justify “the war on terror”..
      And also look at agents robert Wright and John vincent in their 2 year investigation of what would be two of the 9/11 hijackers.. and their money man saudi yasin Al qadi, part owner of P-tech… who were “in the security systems of the :CIA,FBI,NSA,NORAD, FAA,Secret service,etc… above top secret clearance….
      The fbi is this nations biggest terrorist threat. That is because @ 2/3 of all terror attacks and attempts involve FBI “informants”/protected assets…

      1. vegasmike

        I was in New York and Berkeley in the late 60s, mostly New York. I never had trouble getting reefer in either place. Crack didn’t appear on the scene until the late 80s. In New York and California you could buy cocaine pretty easily. But it was expensive.

    2. juno mas

      Yes, Tom Stone. Many who lived through the 60’s understand the collusion between the FBI and local law enforcement was real. (I was at UCSB in 1968.) Ronald Reagan had just begun his first term as California’s governor. He made a stop in Santa Barbara as governor and his vehicle entourage was pelted when driving through downtown by students and proletariat alike. At the time I had a red beard and looked similar to the hell-raising UCSB professor Richard Flacks; the FBI mistook me for him and attempted to “detain” me. Their report back to the local police provided a source of harassment until I graduated and departed to NorCal.

      In confirmation, this shit never ends! It was much worse for the Black student who was Student Body president at the time.

  4. Jack

    This is certainly believable. The FBI and CIA have a long documented history of promoting the downfall and deaths of persons they consider to be their enemy. During that period many of the assassinations that occurred still have multiple outstanding doubts about what exactly happened. Martin Luther King, Robert Kennedy, and JFK are all examples. I have been to both Memphis (the Lorraine Motel where MLK was killed) and Dallas’ Dealey Plaza. Being there in person on the ground really gives you a sense of how events could NOT have happened the way the official accounts describe. Never made it to the Ambassador Hotel in LA (where RFK was assassinated). It closed in 1989 and was demolished in 2005.

  5. Mark Gisleson

    The truth is always timely but now more than ever. I’m hoping the Hampton and Malcolm X revelations are priming the pump, preparing average Americans to accept and then demand action on the revelations John Durham’s report will bring.

    1. Generalfeldmarschall von Hindenburg

      The CIA was founded by military aventurers, wall street bankers and white-shoe law firms. The ‘Deep State’ was never far from the surface. No one wanted to look, that’s all.

  6. The Rev Kev

    It certainly was a well planned hit. Have the police take out Malcom’s bodyguards, have someone create a distraction and disturbance in the audience to tie up people’s attention, send in the main killer with a sawn-off shot gun at point blank range, then two backup killers with small arms fire creating chaos and maybe uncertainty who was actually doing the shooting. The only thing was that it was a very public killing which led to the killers being quickly identified. Why go that route when they might have been able to attack him backstage? If there was a message, was it that you don’t contradict the Nation of Islam and its leader as a political force? But in the end they were very useful idiots-

    1. Krombopulous Michael

      Many questions indeed, Rev. The big question for me is why MX still did the talk knowing he’d be missing security and the fact that he knew he’d made enemies in NoI. Who knows who else told him it’d be cool. No one can slip that knife in your back unless they’re close.
      Tragedy and run-ins surround the family, not all considered a coincidence. Betty (Malcolm’s wife) died in a house fire in 1997 started by her grandson, Malcolm Shabazz, who in turn was murdered in Mexico City in 2013. Grandson was diagnosed schizo.
      In January 1995, (Daughter) Qubilah was charged with trying to hire an assassin to kill Louis Farrakhan (yes, with the hand of an FBI informant).
      (Daughter) Malikah Shabazz pleaded guilty in 2011 to stealing the identity of a 70-year-old woman to obtain credit cards and make purchases totaling $55,000. Also in Jan 2017, charged with stealing a UHaul truck and animal cruelty.

  7. DJG, Reality Czar

    Thanks for this. Naked Capitalism has kept the idea in front of readers that the “intelligence community” meddles in elections, meddled in Trump impeachment 1 (fecklessly), and meddled with Hillary Clinton’s lost e-mail server. The publisher I worked for then dutifully published one of Big Jim Comey’s books, because Big Jim, rather than being a typical D.C. bureaucrat, is the new Solzhenitsyn, doncha know?

    The FBI has been malign since inception. The CIA likewise. The various other barely secret agencies like the National Security Agency, too. Further, all of these agencies have been engaged in torture, which has undermined the rule of law in the United States. Penny Lernoux’s, classic book on torture and coups in Latin America, Cry of the People, came out in 1977. Yes, 1977.

    Yet as noted, there is no stomach for a new Church Committee investigation and legislation. Americans, for all of the bloviating and flag-waving, are cowed.

    1. Pavel

      The “liberals” (personified by Rachel Maddow and her fellow travellers at MSNBC, WaPo, NYT and CNN) have discovered a new love and sense of respect for Comey, Brennan, Clapper and the agencies they represent — perjurers, torturers, war criminals, drug runners, racists… I could go on — just as a reaction to Trump. It is the most depressing thing to have happened over the past 4 years. All the hysteria over the January 6th “insurrection” while they praise and give air time to (e.g.) CIA personnel who oversaw the clandestine and/or violent overthrows of democratic governments around the world. (Or Hillary who along with Sarko and Cameron destroyed Libya!)

      I remember reading “The Autobiography of Malcolm X” as a 17 year old in school back in the 70s and being tremendously impressed. Those were the days when Dems and liberals detested the FBI and CIA. Sigh.

      1. JEHR

        I, too, was impressed with Malcolm X. I took a course in university on American history and chose to write an essay comparing Malcolm X and Martin Luther King. I learned a lot about how black leadership in the U.S. was targeted by the powers-that-be whether they were well educated and non-violent or street-wise and open to violent means. I am hoping that in the future there will be a black leader who has all the characteristics of both Malcolm X AND Martin Luther King. Then there will be preeminent power indeed!

        1. drumlin woodchuckles

          Given that the KKKKs ( Kennedy King Kennedy Killers) are still out here among us, what Black leader ( or any other leader) would set hermself up for a decapitation strike by being a combination of Malcolm X AND Martin Luther King?

          People who want something better than the present life will have to spend several years studying facts, things and forces intently enough to understand how power, counter-power and anti-power can be made to work. Such people will also have to learn about what leadership, followership, etc. are and how they work and how to work them. They will also have to learn how to achieve leaderless high-functionality.

          Different groups of people with their own particular shared-vision-clouds will have to learn and practice how to separate into thousands or millions of lone wolves and how to come back together like coherent multi-million-member flocks of starlings, and know how and when to switch back and forth near instantly. Brilliant wolves, brilliant packs, brilliant mobs, brilliant swarms.

          And different such theory-action groups can all offer their separate understandings of what things are and what to do. Brilliant individuals could even move from one TAG to another to another and back as situations demand and suggest.

          The only safety lies in being and having too many millions of micro-leaders and micro-followers to kill them all or even know which few thousand to kill. That makes the KKKKs’ job harder to do or even plan.

      2. RMO

        Pavel: “It is the most depressing thing to have happened over the past 4 years” I agree with you there. Groveling worship of the “intelligence” bloc just because they disliked Trump too is something that I think will continue having repercussions years after Trump’s departure. It may prove to be the most destructive thing to come out of his term as president – and it’s all on the “side” that I have supported my entire life. “The enemy of my enemy is my friend” is seldom true, and even when it is it’s still fraught with peril. Usually the best it can get is “My enemy is the enemy of my other enemy, at least right now.”

        Reflecting upon Malcolm X and Martin Luther King I wonder how well received someone would be by the Democratic Party loyalists, mainstream media and the corporate and academic “wokerati” today if they appeared today espousing the same ideas those men did. My guess: not very well.

        1. drumlin woodchuckles

          The “badness” of the reception such future leaders or thinkers get from ” all the usual suspects” might be a negative indicator of their “goodness” as future leaders or thinkers.

        2. Amfortas the hippie

          “….and it’s all on the “side” that I have supported my entire life…”

          that’s the worst part.
          i was already quite thoroughly disgusted with the demparty, after 2 terms of failed fdr obama…and those 2 terms saw already a moving away from the antiimperialism/antigestapo trend in dempolitics of bush2 years….antiwar sentiment disappeared from polite demcircles(like Kos)
          but the sudden, no-discussion switch to being the fan club for the secret police and all their appendages was shocking.
          even more shocking was how quickly those talking points and memes appeared on the lips of ordinary tv dems i know.
          i knew for sure, then, that i was partyless and even more unrepresented than even i thought.
          all it took was the serendipitous elevation of a hateful moron for a time, to serve as a folk devil.
          “quick! back into the Cave!!”

    2. lordkoos

      Cowed, indeed. I suppose politicians figure if it could happen to Kennedy it could happen to any of them.

      1. drumlin woodchuckles

        That was part of the point. Kennedy after King after X after Kennedy and hundreds of less famous assassinations were in part designed to teach that point.

        Several million people will have to make themselves smart enough to be able to create and sustain and apply hyper-diffuse micro-local distributed leadership of a kind which can’t be personalized and targeted and decapitation-striked.

        1. Lambert Strether

          > Several million people will have to make themselves smart enough to be able to create and sustain and apply hyper-diffuse micro-local distributed leadership of a kind which can’t be personalized and targeted and decapitation-striked.

          If only the sovereign citizens weren’t loons.

          1. drumlin woodchuckles

            It will have to be some entirely other group of people, without sovereign citizen input or even proximity.

            I remember when little Occupy groups were trying to get visibly going in my town. They were all young people. They were all determinedly as leaderless as possible. And several I talked to said they were as leaderless as possible to prevent having or being a Messiah figure for the Kennedy assassins to kill.

  8. Skip Intro

    I like the tidbit about the consistency of the use of right-wing Cuban expats mentioned in the piece. They continued to be useful beyond the watergate burglary. One of them (I forget his aliases… chi chi something) Bush I’s nat. sec. advisor who managed to build a wall of ‘plausible’ deniability around GWB while Ollie North and the rest of the Iran-Contra conspirators, who colluded with a foreign power to influence a US election swung for the public in a limited hangout.

    And Bay of Pigs veterans and their scions were also reportedly active in transporting ballots in Florida, in the 2000 election debacle. I believe they are slowly being replaced by next generation Ukrainian nazis as our go-to right-wing operatives.

    1. Andrew

      Last I read about Arseniy Yatsenyuk he was living in Florida. That was a couple of years ago so I dont know if he is still in the neighborhood. Wiki didn’t have any new info. Ive also read about there being large numbers Ukrainians on work visas employed at Disney parks and meat packing plants. There is a dark vision that comes into view.

    2. lordkoos

      Interesting that in Wikipedia’s entry on Ollie North, the first paragraph/summary paints him as an upstanding citizen without mentioning the dirt:

      “Oliver Laurence North (born October 7, 1943) is an American political commentator, television host, military historian, author, and retired United States Marine Corps lieutenant colonel.”

      Yet how many Americans remember Ollie as any of those things, rather than a guy who ran an illegal drug and arms operation? I happen to know personally a former drug dealer who worked for Oliver’s army (he even got to meet Fawn Hall). These drug smugglers were told they were patriots doing great things for their country by helping Ollie’s cause. They all made small fortunes and they were protected, until the sh*t hit the fan when the operation was revealed in the press, then they were all sacrificed. The guy I know did three years in federal prison after being snitched on by another dealer in the group, mostly because he refused to give anyone up.

  9. km

    Forget Malcolm X, forget MLK, forget Fred Hampton, forget that little thing about how Iraq was chock full of WMD!

    We can trust the alphabet agencies now, it is Our Patriotic Duty to trust them, especially when they say things about Trump or Russia or other folks that goodthink liberals are supposed to hate! (note that I detest Trump, but that doesn’t mean that I believe every asinine conspiracy theory, just because it makes Trump look bad.)

  10. Carolinian

    Last night I watched a documentary called Assassins about the assassination of Kim Jong-un’s brother Kim Jong-nam in the Kuala Lumpur airport via vx nerve poison. About two thirds of the way through you get the bombshell revelation (it has been reported in the press) that Kim Jung-nam had just received a $130,000 payment from a CIA agent before going to the airport and his death. This changes the narrative line from “brutal dictator murders rival brother” to “North Korean premier assassinates CIA traitor.” Of course such a change doesn’t make Kim Jong-un not a brutal dictator but it does provide some context given NK hatred of the US (after Korean War genocide they have their reasons).

    Enough already with politicians vaolorizing the spooks. Paranoia about the CIA and FBI used to be a normal condition and it should be.

  11. Michael Fiorillo

    Not to cast any doubt on the claim/assumption that the FBI/NYPD was involved in Malcolm’s murder (which I have always assumed to be the case), but it’s very odd that none of the articles covering this story mention Eugene Roberts (“Brother Gene”), who was an NYPD undercover agent working as one on Malcom’s bodyguards, and was the first person at Malcolm’s side onstage after the shooting. Photos taken immediately after Malcolm was shot show Roberts trying to resuscitate him.

    Roberts later went on to penetrate the NYC Panthers, and testified against the Panther 21 at their trial, although he seems to have functioned strictly as an informer, not a provacateur, as other NYPD Red Squad members who provided the weapons for the supposed “terror attacks” underpinning the indictments, did.

    Roberts was interviewed years later – if memory serves, during a PBS documentary about Malcolm, made during the rise in interest in him preceding Spike Lee’s biopic – and didn’t come off as your typical retired cop and Red Squad informer: missing teeth, and with a haunted look about him, he spoke about Malcolm with great respect, and seemed to feel regret for his actions. I don’t know if he’s still alive, but if he is, he should be sought out.

    Perhaps I shouldn’t be surprised, but it’s incredible to me that there’s no mention of him on either Malcolm’s or the Panther 21 Wikipedia pages. His presence by Malcolm’s side in the lead-up to the assasination at a minimum fills out some of the story, and leads to many other questions.

  12. HH

    The American people, like the “good Germans” in WWII, know how deep the evil is in our nation, and they accept it. It takes just a few killings and character assassinations to keep people in line. We are the people that approved indiscriminate killing of civilians in the last century and threaten the world with mass murder today. Political assassinations mean nothing to a society that accepts murder as a tool of the power elite.

    I shouted out
    Who killed the Kennedys?
    When after all
    It was you and me

    — Mick Jagger

    1. zagonostra

      Not too sure collective guilt is a valid ethical stance. By extension, blacks in Mississippi or people trying to survive the best they could killed the Kennedy’s. No, there are individuals, there are names associated with those individuals and they need to be held to account.

      RS and Jagger notwithstanding, if it’s you and me that killed the Kennedy’s then there is no need for a full accounting and for justice to be meted out.

      1. Michael Fiorillo

        Thanks, zagonostra. If everyone is guilty, then no one is. Decent song, though… if you like that sort of thing.

        The shoe might fit Mick, since he’d just left the London School of Economics when Kennedy was whacked, but I was only seven years old; by the above logic I bore some proportional responsibility, too

        1. HH

          When Obama ordered the murder of US Citizen Anwar Al-Alwaki, there was no public outcry. When Trump ordered the murder of Soleimani, there was no public outcry. If Biden orders an assassination tomorrow, there will be no public outcry. Americans are OK with murder, as long as a powerful person does it. The CIA literally gets away with murder every year. Silence implies consent.

          People who have inconvenient information about high-profile US assassinations tend to end up dead, mostly as “suicides,” but often in unsolved homicide cases, like that of Malcolm X. That is why deathbed confessions are the only way a bit of the truth comes out.

          It is widely known that CIA assassinations utilize “cutouts” and proxies that make it impossible to trace the killers to their bosses. That is why US politicians fear the CIA, and the few who have defied it have been killed. The United States will never be governed by law as long as agencies like the CIA can kidnap, torture, and kill with impunity.

    2. drumlin woodchuckles

      “I shouted out
      Who killed the Kennedys?
      When after all
      It was you and me

      — Mick Jagger”

      That’s one of the two most repellent fake-wisdom lyrics I know from rock music. It reeks of moral superiority stuff-strutting. Behold! it silently says in the silent subtext . . . . How superiorly moral I am to take upon myself the guilt of an event with which I had precisely nothing to do and over which I had precisely zero control. I believe the Amish call this ” pride in humility”.

      The other most repellent fake-wisdom lyric I know is that line from Kansas’s ” Dust In The Wind”. Its that line that goes . . . . ” and all your money won’t another minute buy”. Every time I hear it I think about all the years and years of lifespan that Kansas’s money can buy . . . . all the best shinola food and shinola nutritional supplements, all the best medical care, etc. Every time I hear that lyric, my teeth scream.

  13. Alex Cox

    There is hope, at least, that people on the right are turning against the internal intelligence police. A decade ago Clint Eastwood directed a dreadful hagiography of J Edgar Hoover. His most recent film, Richard Jewell, takes a very different view of the FBI.
    It’s a good movie with a great central performance.

  14. neo-realist

    Louis Lomax attempted to go farther than the makers of the netflix doc on Malcolm X’s murder – He was working on a documentary film implicating the intelligence agencies in the death of Malcolm X and curiously, one day in 1970, the brakes on his car stopped working and he died in the car crash

    1. drumlin woodchuckles

      And who drained all the brake fluid out of Louis Lomax’s brakes? Why, Lee Harvey Oswald of course.
      Acting alone.

Comments are closed.