Secret Service Security

Thanks to Russ Baker editor/pub. of WHO,WHAT,WHY for publishing my experience. Also, thanks to Vince Palamara for incld. the story on his blog.  The memorable thing for me is that 45 yrs. earlier I had accidentally breached security about a mile from this Obama incident when JFK gave a speech @ UND. My friend, Bruce Folsom, & I walked through 4 sets of arena doors that should have been locked accd. to an interview I had 45 yrs. later with the Univ. of North Dakota official in charge of security that day.  Dr. John Penn said”the SS should have had those doors locked after I gave then the keys @ 7:30 am”.

I checked the National Archives in DC for the record of JFK’s stop in Grand Forks that day only to find out the SS trip details had been withdrawn from the file boxes for national security reasons.  That statement was printed on a single sheet of paper in 2 files I examined for Sept. 24/25/63.  In fact in a statement to me, in about 2003, the ARRB’s head, John Tunheim, said the docs. were shredded in 1995 by the Secret Service a week before he requested them for the ARRB

“And how is it now”, ask Baker & Palamara? Here’s an account of a WhoWhatWhy friend (Gary Severson), from an Obama campaign stop in Grand Forks, North Dakota, in April, 2008.

The night before I went to the convention center/domed stadium about 10pm & was walking the convention center concourse when I encountered a private security guard.  We made small talk & soon he volunteered that his job the next day was to escort Obama from the ballroom through the kitchen into the main arena for the speech.

I said to him that sounds like the scenario from the RFK scene in 1968.  He didn’t know what I meant.  I clued him in.  The point is the SS was stupid enough to allow an amateur to be a part of security.

The next day I positioned myself by the kitchen exit, not that close but in a position to be the 1st person that Obama would greet if he were to go toward those seats.  I reminded an SS agent about the discussion with the security guard from the night before & he agreed that it shouldn’t have happened but he wasn’t in the area when Obama did walk out as I had been told he would.  The security guard actually walked over to me & thanked me for giving him a story to tell his grandkids.  I guess the glitches in security are more common than we imagine—but more likely if you have hookers on your mind.

“Oh, by the way,” Baker says, “during renewed government inquiries into JFK’s death in the 1990s, the Secret Service destroyed crucial assassination-related records”.  Of course the ref. here by Russ Baker is to the previously described shredded 1963 Conservation Tour docs. attested to by the ARRB’s John Tunheim.

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