How does Infamy differ from other books about Kennedy’s assassination? How does it differ from other arguments about 9/11? These questions suggest that other books on these subjects resemble each other. They do not. In one respect, however, their authors share a key characteristic as they undertake their work. Given general willingness to consider or accept alternate narratives, they assume burden of proof when they investigate these infamous crimes, as they reach conclusions based on their investigations. The Warren Commission and the 9/11 Commission have rested their cases. Authors assume the task of proving them wrong, in order to overturn their verdict.

That requires a particular way of addressing the evidence, a certain style of argumentation, and consciousness that many in your audience probably do not agree with you. What if researchers spoke as if the case is made? They don’t have to carry this burden indefinitely. At a certain point, the evidence is conclusive, the hypotheses sound. Hypotheses confirmed with evidence support an alternate story that actually has a foundation. When you have proven your case, you don’t have to keep pushing the rock up the hill. The rock already sits at the summit.

Infamy CoverPeople who cannot change their minds, or will not, say such reasoning begs the question. They say the alternate story assumes a false conclusion before the discussion begins. So be it. You cannot convince them no matter how much care you take to explain your case or develop the evidence. They do not care whether you show deference to their position. They are certainly not interested in yours. Your opponent will find your evidence insufficient, no matter how you present it. When you try either one of these cases, you will not have a unanimous verdict. Moreover, people who disagree with you, as well as people who are sympathetic to your arguments, do not agree among themselves.

The Kennedy case is thirty-eight years farther along than arguments about 9/11. For more than fifty-two years, consequences of a fateful murder in Dallas have settled in. Historians of our rise and fall, many years hence, will see how Dealey Plaza and 9/11 grew from the same root. They will explain how unwillingness to expose the first crime gave the national security state license to plan the second. Some patterns of history unfold more rapidly, or more slowly, than others. In this case, only thirty-eight years separate a coup in 1963, and a remarkable consolidation of power in 2001.

Meanwhile, research and writing on Kennedy’s murder is distinctly more conclusive and comprehensive than inquiries about what happened on 9/11. Twelve years after Kennedy’s murder in 1963, we did not know nearly so much about individuals and their motives as we currently do. The last ten years have seen amazing advances in truthful accounts about the events of November 22. Fifty or sixty years after 9/11, we have to hope that, somehow, we’ll know more about individuals and motives in this case as well. When we grasp connections between these two events, we’ll also grasp the United States’ transition from a republic to a failing empire.