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Gerald Posner

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Title: Gerald Posner  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Case Closed (manga), Posner, Eric Stover, Loyd Jowers, Lee Harvey Oswald
Collection: 1954 Births, 20Th-Century American Writers, 21St-Century American Writers, American Biographers, American Investigative Journalists, American Journalists, American Lawyers, American Male Journalists, American Male Writers, American Non-Fiction Crime Writers, American Political Writers, Critics of Conspiracy Theories, Living People, Researchers of the Assassination of John F. Kennedy, Researchers of the John F. Kennedy Assassination, University of California, Berkeley Alumni, University of California, Hastings College of the Law Alumni, Writers from San Francisco, California
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Gerald Posner

Gerald Posner
Gerald Posner in 2014: photographer Dale Stine
Born Gerald Leo Posner[1]
(1954-05-20) May 20, 1954
San Francisco, California, U.S.
Nationality American
Occupation Writer
Spouse(s) Trisha Posner

Gerald Leo Posner (born May 20, 1954) is an American investigative journalist and author of twelve books, including Case Closed: Lee Harvey Oswald and the Assassination of JFK (1993), which explores the John F. Kennedy assassination, and Killing the Dream: James Earl Ray and the Assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. (1998), about the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. A plagiarism scandal involving his articles and books arose in 2010.[2][3][4][5][6] In 2015, the Chicago Tribune called Posner "a merciless pitbull of an investigator." [7]


  • Early life and education 1
  • Journalism career 2
    • Mengele: The Complete Story 2.1
    • Warlords of Crime 2.2
    • The Bio-Assassins 2.3
    • Hitler's Children 2.4
    • Case Closed 2.5
    • Killing the Dream 2.6
    • Motown 2.7
    • Why America Slept 2.8
    • Secrets of the Kingdom 2.9
    • Miami Babylon 2.10
    • God's Bankers 2.11
    • Editorial writings 2.12
    • Film projects 2.13
  • Personal life 3
  • Controversies 4
    • Plagiarism and quote falsification 4.1
    • Harper Lee lawsuit 4.2
  • Bibliography 5
  • See also 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8

Early life and education

Posner was born in San Francisco, the only child of Jerry and Gloria Posner, native San Franciscans. His father was a labor union official.

Posner was raised Catholic.[8] He was educated at St. Ignatius College Preparatory and graduated summa cum laude from the University of California, Berkeley in 1975. In 1978, he earned his (J.D. from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law, where he served as the associate executive editor for the university's Law Review.[9]

At age 23, he joined law firm Cravath, Swaine & Moore as one of the youngest attorneys ever hired by the firm.[10] In 1980, he went into private practice with a partner. He left the law in 1986, when his first book, about Nazi Dr. Josef Mengele's life on the run, was published by McGraw Hill.

Journalism career

Mengele: The Complete Story

Posner's first book, co-written with British journalist John Ware, was the 1986 biography Mengele: The Complete Story. The book was the result of a five-year pro bono lawsuit that Posner brought on behalf of survivors of Mengele's medical experiments at Auschwitz.[11] Posner and Ware obtained exclusive access to 5,000 pages of Mengele's diaries and personal papers for their book.[12][13] The book was critically recognized as the "definitive" biography of Mengele.[14]

Posner testified before the [15]

In June 1986, Posner appeared with Mengele's only son, Rolf Mengele, on the Phil Donahue Show. Syndicated columnist Lewis Grizzard called the hour-long live program "an incredibly compelling piece of television journalism."[16]

Some of the content in Mengele: The Complete Story was utilized by the United States Department of Justice's Office of Special Investigations (OSI), which in February 1985 began an in-depth investigation into Mengele's post-war activities and whereabouts. The investigation, done in conjunction with the United States Marshals Service, was launched after allegations that Mengele was at any time in the custody of or had any relationship with U.S. government institutions or personnel after World War II. In its official report to the Attorney General of the United States in 1992, In the Matter of Josef Mengele, OSI noted it was indebted to Posner for obtaining a witness statement concerning Mengele's whereabouts from October 1945 to August 1, 1948/[17]

Warlords of Crime

In 1988, Posner published Warlords of Crime: Chinese Secret Societies: The New Mafia, an exposé of Triads and international heroin syndicates. Posner, and his wife, Trisha, traveled to Hong Kong, the Golden Triangle, the Netherlands, San Francisco, London and New York to conduct in-person research with drug traffickers.[11] Clarence Petersen, reviewing the book for The Chicago Tribune, commented, "Posner ... is persuasive for the facts he gathered, all the more so because his narrative is largely the story of how he got the story, what he was told by the criminals and by law enforcement agents here and abroad and, most persuasive of all, what he saw with his own eyes. He does not dramatize; he doesn't have to. The chilling story he unearthed speaks for itself."[18] Former New York detective and best-selling novelist, Dorothy Uhnak, wrote in The New York Times that "Warlords of Crime is powerful, frightening and, unfortunately, nonfiction."[19]

Touchstone Pictures purchased the film rights to "Warlords of Crime.[20]

The Bio-Assassins

Posner's only novel was a biological warfare thriller set in the Cold War. According to Publishers Weekly, "Posner's first novel, a thriller whose development depends heavily on the author's convincing descriptions of the technology in intelligence work. The narrative works within the current conventions of its genre: principle is a mask for expedience; cynicism displaces conviction; proficiency implies virtue. But Posner, author of nonfiction works on Josef Mengele and Chinese secret societies, handles his material well. His descriptions move smartly; his characters, while somewhat two-dimensional, are convincing in their context; and his plot is constructed to satisfy demanding readers."[21]

Hitler's Children

Posner's 1991 book, Hitler's Children: Sons and Daughters of Leaders of the Third Reich Talk About Themselves and Their Fathers, included in-depth interviews with a dozen children of top Nazi officials. The book was also well received. Karen Stabiner wrote in her review for the Los Angeles Times, "This is a mesmerizing, blood-chilling book, a set of oral histories of the sons and daughters of 11 of Hitler's top men. It is barely possible to read more than a few pages at a time; the contrast between innocent childhood experience, and the awful understanding of that experience that came with time, is enough to make you weep."[22]

Christopher Lehmann-Haupt in The New York Times questioned whether Posner's book length treatment was necessary to study the children of Nazi perpetrators. "Perhaps it would have been more enlightening had Mr. Posner studied fewer cases more intensely, or even a single case from the most intimate point of view."[23]

Case Closed

In his 1993 book Case Closed, Posner contended that Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone in the assassination of John F. Kennedy and Oswald's murderer, Jack Ruby, acted independently as well. Case Closed was a New York Times bestseller and a finalist for the 1994 Pulitzer Prize for History. It was also the subject of a double issue of U.S. News and World Report, and featured on programs such as ABC's 20/20, CBS Special Reports, and PBS's Frontline. The book was optioned for a television miniseries by David L. Wolper, the producer of the acclaimed miniseries Roots.[24] In his 2003 autobiography, Producer: A Memoir), Wolpe cited his failure to get movies made of Case Closed and the Cuban Missile Crisis book, One Hell of a Gamble: Khrushchev, Castro, and Kennedy, as his two major career disappointments.[25]

In 1993, Posner testified before the Legislation and National Security Subcommittee of the United States House Committee on Government Operations about the findings in Case Closed.[26] In 1998, the Assassination Records Review Board briefly referenced this testimony in discussing two unsuccessful attempts to acquire the interview notes of two physicians, James Humes and J. Thornton Boswell, that Posner said he possessed.[27]

Case Closed generally drew critical acclaim from the media; The Chicago Tribune, The Toronto Sun, Sydney Morning Herald and Newsday all cited Posner's "meticulous" research in their respective reviews.[28]

In his review for The Chicago Tribune, Jeffrey Toobin wrote, "Unlike many of the 2,000 other books that have been written about the Kennedy assassination, Posner's 'Case Closed' is a resolutely sane piece of work. More importantly, 'Case Closed' is utterly convincing in its thesis, which seems, in light of all that has transpired over the past 30 years, almost revolutionary. His thesis is this: Lee Harvey Oswald killed Kennedy by himself…. I started ‘Case Closed’ as a skeptic—and slightly put off by the presumptuous title. To my mind historical truth is always a slippery thing. The chances of knowing for sure what happened in any event—much less one as murky as the Kennedy assassination—seem remote. But this fascinating and important book won me over. Case closed, indeed.”[29]

Case Closed also drew widespread criticism from academics involved in assassination research as well as from non-academic assassination researchers who contended that it contained factual inaccuracies.[30][31][32][33][34] For example, historian David Wrone wrote that "massive numbers of factual errors suffuse the book".[31] Vincent Bugliosi, whose own book Reclaiming History largely agrees with Posner's conclusions, accused Posner of "omissions and distortions" but also described Case Closed as "an impressive work".[35] "He is perhaps public enemy No. 1 to members of what might be called the JFK conspiracy industry," wrote journalist Paul Galloway.[36]

Coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the assassination in 2013, Gallup released a national poll showing that while a majority (61%) of Americans still believed a conspiracy was behind JFK's death, the number of those who thought it was a lone assassin (30%) was the highest in 46 years.[37] Although some mainstream media commentators such as The Independent said that "for Americans, JFK will never be case closed,",[38] others like The Economist cited "Case Closed" and concluded, "50 years on, face it, Oswald did it."[39] Historian Robert Dallek called "Case Closed" "authoritative,"[40] and said, "the best book on this subject is by a man named Gerald Posner, called 'Case Closed', I think he has responded very effectively to all the conspiracy theories, and there are so many of them."[41] Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist, Hector Tobar wrote in the Los Angeles Times that "Case Closed" was "the book that cured me of JFK conspiracies once and for all."[42]

Case Closed continued to generate widely divergent views. Film director Oliver Stone told a JFK assassination conference in Pittsburg that Case Closed was discredited and "there's nothing in the movie (JFK) that I would go back on."[43] Posner, on the day of the 50th anniversary, told CNN's Anderson Cooper that "the only thing he [Stone] gets right in 'JFK' is the date on which Kennedy is killed.[44]

Killing the Dream

As controversial and talked-about as Case Closed was Posner's 1998 Killing the Dream: James Earl Ray and the Assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. (Random House). The book concluded that confessed assassin, James Earl Ray, killed Martin Luther King Jr. acting alone, likely for the hope of collecting a racist bounty for the murder.[45] Among other portions of his book, Posner tracked down for the first time the mysterious "Raoul," fingered by James Earl Ray as the mastermind of a conspiracy to kill King and to frame Ray. After setting out to settle Ray's Raoul story, Posner challenged as a hoax the widely printed conspiracy story that Green Beret snipers from the 20th Special Forces Group were in Memphis on the day of the assassination.[45][46][47]

Killing the Dream was the largest private reinvestigation of the King assassination in 30 years.[48] As was Case Closed, Killing the Dream was widely praised and embraced by the mainstream press, and among the national broadcasts that featured the book included CBS 48 Hours, Charlie Rose and TODAY.[49] Richard Bernstein in The New York Times wrote that the book was "the most comprehensive and definitive study of the King assassination to date....He [Posner] has rendered a valuable service by putting the King murder under his magnifying glass. One finishes this book reassured that no dark secrets remain, that no unexplained details need bedevil the national composure."[45] Two-time Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist and columnist, Anthony Lewis, in The New York Times Book Review, said, "With 'Killing the Dream,' he [Posner] has written a superb book: a model of investigation, meticulous in its discovery and presentation of evidence, unbiased in its exploration of every claim. And it is a wonderfully readable book, as gripping as a first-class detective story."[47][50][51][52][53][54]

On the other hand, conspiracy theorists bristled at Killing the Dream, criticizing Posner for in part basing it on "a psychological evaluation of James Earl Ray, which he [Posner] is not qualified to give, and he dismisses evidence of conspiracy in King's murder as cynical attempts to exploit the tragedy".[55] William Pepper, Ray's final defense attorney, repeatedly dismissed Posner's book as inaccurate and misleading. Dexter King, one of Martin Luther King's sons, also criticized it.[56] In 1999, the King family, represented by Pepper, brought a civil lawsuit in which a jury found evidence of a conspiracy involving Loyd Jowers, the owner of a restaurant near the assassination site. In response to that verdict, Posner told The New York Times, "It distresses me greatly that the legal system was used in such a callous and farcical manner in Memphis. If the King family wanted a rubber stamp of their own view of the facts, they got it."[57]


Posner seemingly took a respite from assassination controversy in his 2002 book, Motown: Music, Money, Sex and Power, a business history of one of America's most successful recording labels. The New York Times's Janet Maslin said the book was "actually a much more reputable book than its title suggests" and concludes that "Happily, Mr. Posner, a former Wall Street lawyer, has a good ear for tales, tall or otherwise. And he also assiduously digs into the business practices that turned the Motown story sour."[58] Most of the mainstream press echoed the San Francisco Chronicle that concluded "Posner offers the most objective and thoroughly accurate history of the label to date, plus a detailed and complex portrait of its founder, Berry Gordy".[59][60][61] In his New York Times review of the 2013 Broadway show, Motown: The Musical, Charles Isherwood noted, "For a full and coherent history of Mr. Gordy’s game-changing music factory, you’d need to check out Gerald Posner’s engrossing book 'Motown: Music, Money, Sex and Power.'"[62] The criticism by some of Motown was that Posner was "tone deaf about music" but invariably noted that since he had written a business history, not a review of the label's music, "to his credit, Posner claims to be nothing more than a historian anyway..."[63]

Why America Slept

In 2003 Random House published Posner's Why America Slept, which discusses the conspiracy of the al-Qaeda terrorists who were responsible for the September 11, 2001, attacks. In the book Posner claims that Prince Ahmed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud had ties to al-Qaeda and advance knowledge of the 9/11 attacks. This assertion was strongly denied by Prince Ahmed's family, who pointed out that he in fact loved America, spent time at his home there, and invested heavily in the American horse racing industry. Prince Ahmed, two other Saudi princes named by Posner, and the chief of the Pakistani Air Force, all died within days of each other, either from a blood clot after a simple operation, a car wreck involving only one vehicle, dehydration in the desert, or a sabotaged helicopter explosion.[64][65] Three of the men were in their forties, and one in his twenties. In Why America Slept, Posner became the first journalist to reveal the details of an American interrogation against one of the highest ranking Al Qaeda suspects caught to date.[65] Why America Slept reached No. 2 on the New York Times best-seller list.[66]

Secrets of the Kingdom

In his 2005 book Secrets of the Kingdom: The Inside Story of the Secret Saudi-U.S. Connection, Posner provides an account of the "close" business and personal relationship between the House of Saud and the U.S. government, including discussions of "dirty bomb" technology and the financial and political maneuvering surrounding 9/11. Posner also asserts that the Saudis have built an elaborate doomsday scenario around their oil fields. The Saudis have denied this, and some skepticism has been expressed about the plausibility of Posner's account of such a scheme.[67] According to Posner, he and his wife, Trisha, have been banned from entering Saudi Arabia as a result of this book.

Miami Babylon

This 2009 book explores the history of Miami Beach, with a particular focus on corruption, extravagance, and the drug trade. Some of the individuals interviewed by Posner for Miami Babylon have complained of severe misquoting and inaccuracies.[68] Miami Babylon has been optioned for a television series.[69][70]

God's Bankers

A 2015 book about a 200-year history of Vatican finances and the Pope Francis... A meticulous work that cracks wide open the Vatican’s legendary, enabling secrecy." [74] Booklist said that "A decade of exhaustive research into the deep and mysterious history of the Vatican's finances is a monumental task, but controversial author Posner proves more than up to the this daunting challenge....It's a fast-paced read that brings history alive on every page. The book will captivate those who prefer their historical nonfiction spiked with real-life tales of murder, power, and intrigue."[75] It became Posner's third NY Times bestseller (previously Case Closed and Why America Slept), on February 22, 2015.[76]

However, other reviewers have noted that God’s Bankers, contains many inaccuracies, the most serious of which is Posner’s allegation in chapter 11 that Bernardino Nogara, the war-time Director of the Vatican’s Amministrazione Speciale per la Santa Sede, was a Nazi intelligence agent. This allegation is based on his finding one ‘Nogara’ named in the Interrogation Report of Abwehr recruiter, Reinhard Reme, which he suggests could only be Bernardino Nogara, who was therefore working for the Nazis throughout the Second World War. But the Interrogation Report of this selfsame 'Nogara' is found in The National Archives, London, where he is identified as one Bruno Nogara, a Venice school teacher who was arrested by the Allies in April 1945, an entirely different individual, which categorically disproves Posner’s allegation.[77]

Faced with this evidence, Posner has amended his recently published paperback version of God’s Bankers and now says, on page 137, that there were in fact two Abwehr agents named Nogara: Bruno Nogara, whose Interrogation Report is found in The National Archives, London, and Branch Nogara, listed in Appendix C of the Interrogation Report of Reinhard Reme, Abwehr II Recruiter, found in the National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C. His argument is that the former, Bruno Nogara, is listed as a member of Abwehr Unit 257 under Reichsstatthalter Hubert Pfannenstiel, while the latter, Branch Nogara, is listed under Abwehr Unit 254 commanded by Reichsstatthalter Ernst Schmidt-Burck – thus, two different Abwehr Units under two different commanders and therefore two different Nogaras. However, The Tablet reports that the very source cited by Posner clearly identifies "Branch Nogara", not as a person, but as the small town of Nogara located just north of the river PO where Abwehr Unit 254 maintained its supply depot. According to The Tablet, there is no second Nogara, only Bruno Nogara, an Abwehr agent, and the small Italian town of Nogara which Posner claims refers to Bernardino Nogara, the Vatican’s Financial Director, when actually it refers a town of the same name.[78] The document cited by The Tablet can be read at The National Archives

Citing disclosures in God's Bankers, Posner wrote an opinion editorial in the Los Angeles Times on February 13, 2015, calling on Pope Francis "to approve the release of the Vatican's Holocaust-era files in its secret archives. They probably contain not only answers to how early the Vatican knew about the Nazis' mass murder of innocents, but also crucially important documents from the Vatican Bank, founded in June 1942." [79] Subsequently, Posner started collecting online signatures in petitions to Pope Francis to release the Vatican Bank's World War II archives and the Vatican's Holocaust documents. Posner has said that his goal is to get more than 1,000 signatures to present to Pope Francis when the Pope visits America in September 2015.[80]

Editorial writings

Posner was a strong supporter of

  • Posner's Official website
  • Posner's blog
  • Posner's Huffington Post writings
  • Posner's Daily Beast articles
  • Interview of Gerald Posner for the podcast The Skeptics' Guide to the Universe.
  • From Cravath to Controversy

External links

  1. ^
  2. ^ Gerald Posner RESIGNS From Daily Beast Over Plagiarism Scandal by Danny Shea, The Huffington Post, February 11, 2010.
  3. ^ 3 Lessons from Gerald Posner's Plagiarism Scandal by John Hudson, The Atlantic Wire, February 12, 2010
  4. ^ Plagiarism Excuses. Taking—er, borrowing—a page out of the Gerald Posner playbook. by David Graham, Newsweek, February 11, 2010
  5. ^ Amid book scandal, authors Gerald Posner and Frank Owen confront each other at Miami Beach Botanical Garden by Steve Rothaus, Miami Herald, April 2010
  6. ^ Fun Plagiarism Scandal Becoming Funner Lawsuit and Conspiracy Scandal by Hamilton Nolan, Gawker, May 13, 2010
  7. ^ a b "Review: God's Bankers by Gerald Posner". 
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^ Posner, Gerald. "Gerald Posner". Huffington Post. 
  11. ^ a b
  12. ^
  13. ^ "How Nazi War Criminal Josef Mengele Cheated Justice for 34 Years," Chicago Tribune Magazine, May 18, 1986
  14. ^
    • "A fascinating account of Mengele's life on the run and the fruitless efforts to apprehend him." "Mengele: The Complete Story: A Review," by Harry Trimborn, Los Angeles Times Book Review, July 13, 1986, p. 9
    • "The book effectively paints a picture of a lonely, embittered Nazi. It knocks down decades of myths that Mengele was shielded by a protective squad of underground Nazis." "Book Review: Mengele, Entertainment, United Press International, July 18, 1986, BC Cycle
    • "The research is remarkable." "Escape for the Angel of Death, Mengele: The Complete Story," by John Gellner, The Globe and Mail (Canada), July 19, 1986, p. D17
    • "The Mengele story has now been told, excellently, by the authors of this book..." Books: Evil of the Mediocre/Review of Mengele, by Norman Stone, The Sunday Times (London), August 31, 1986, Issue 8456
    • "Well researched and wonderfully free of all the customary fantasy and exaggeration...Fascinating." "The Death Doctors," by Neal Ascherson, The New York Review of Books, May 28, 1987
    • "This highly engrossing book gives the fullest account yet published of Josef Mengele's life..." "Mengele: Review," Publishers Weekly, June 1986
    • "It's a pity that the official search for him did not match the vigor with which Posner and Ware stalk their subject in print." Mengele: The Complete Story, Book Review Supplement, San Francisco Chronicle, July 1986.
  15. ^ a b
  16. ^
  17. ^ "In the Matter of Josef Mengele:" (PDF). 
  18. ^ Clarence Petersen (February 4, 1990). "Warlords of Crime: Review".  
  19. ^ Warlords of Crime: Review, by Dorothy Uhnak, The New York Times, Book Review, October 9, 1988, p. BR35
  20. ^ "Outtakes: Coming to America," by Pat H. Broeske, Los Angeles Times, March 12, 1989, Calendar Section, p. 36
  21. ^ "Review: The Bio-Assassins". 
  22. ^ Karen Stabiner (May 5, 1991). "Nonfiction".  
  23. ^  
  24. ^ "The JFK Debate Gets 'Case Closed,' The Movie," Outlook: Science & Society, "U.S. News & World Report," November 1, 1993.
  25. ^  
  26. ^ The effectiveness of Public Law 102-526, the President John F. Kennedy Assassination Records Collection Act of 1992: Hearing before the Legislation and National Security Subcommittee of the Committee on Government Operations, House of Representatives, One Hundred Third Congress, first session, November 17, 1993 (PDF). Washington, D.C.: United States Government Printing Office. 1994. p. 26.  
  27. ^  
  28. ^
    • The Toronto Sun, February 22, 1994: "In fact, I think all conspiracy theories are blown out of the water by Posner's meticulous research and careful conclusions.”
    • Sydney Morning Herald, November 27, 1993: “PAINSTAKING re-examination of the greatest murder mystery of modern times: who killed JFK? It's no mystery concludes lawyer/journalist [Posner]: lone assassin Lee Harvey Oswald did it. And who would argue after reading this meticulous analysis, complete with graphics, illustrations and detailed appendices?”
    • Chicago Tribune, October 3, 1993: "Half of 'Case Closed' is a meticulous examination of Oswald's entire life, culminating in an almost day-by-day chronicle of his movements in the last two months before the assassination... Its appeal lies both in its thorough, apparently even-handed research, and the fact that, following the publication in recent years of a near-constant stream of conspiracy books, 'Case Closed' may be the first by a respected author to argue persuasively for the Oswald-alone theory, a scenario most Americans dismissed years ago."
    • Newsday (New York), September 16, 1993: "Posner employs meticulous research to reach what counts as a novel conclusion: That, for all its flaws, the Warren Commission was right. Oswald killed JFK without help from anyone.”
    • Sun-Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, FL), September 18, 1993: "Posner's exact and thorough destruction of the conspiracy theorists gives you Oswald the man, not Oswald the brilliant secret agent or Oswald the hapless patsy."
    • Florida Today, April 24, 2000: "The industry standard belongs perhaps to lawyer-turned- investigative reporter Gerald Posner, whose meticulous Case Closed in 1993 was an immersion into assassination minutiae."
    • Entertainment Weekly, Gene Lyons, September 24, 1993: “As thorough and incisive a job of reporting and critical thinking as you will ever read, Case Closed does more than buttress the much beleaguered Warren Commission's conclusion ….More than that, Posner's book is written in a penetrating, lucid style that makes it a joy to read. Even the footnotes, often briskly debunking one or another fanciful or imaginary scenario put forth by the conspiracy theorists, rarely fail to enthrall…. Case Closed is a work of genuine patriotism and a monument to the astringent power of reason. ‘A’”
    • US News & World Report, August 23, 1993: “He [Posner] sweeps away decades of polemical smoke, layer by layer, and builds an unshakable case against JFK's killer."
    • NYTBR (in the review of Norman Mailer's Oswald's Tale), April 30, 1995. "Gerald Posner's 'Case Closed' (1993), which argues with an awesome command of evidentiary detail that Oswald did it, period."
    • Dallas Morning News, June 22, 1997: "More than three decades after the Kennedy assassination, there still are Americans who wonder. Gerald Posner's masterful study of that case should have laid those doubts to rest for thinking readers…”
  29. ^  
  30. ^  
  31. ^ a b David R. Wrone. "Review of Gerald Posner, Case Closed.", Journal of Southern History 6 (February 1995), pp. 186–188.
  32. ^ Peter Dale Scott, "A Review of Gerald Posner, Case Closed: Lee Harvey Oswald and the Assassination of JFK, Deep Politics II: Essays on Oswald, Skokie, Illinois, Green Archives Publications, 1995.
  33. ^ Harold Weisberg, Case Open: The Omissions, Distortions and Falsifications of Case Closed, NY, Carroll and Graf, 1994.
  34. ^ Martin Shackelford, "Case Closed: Lee Harvey Oswald and the Assassination of JFK, by Gerald Posner: A Preliminary Critique," The Investigator, August–September 1993.
  35. ^ Bugliosi, Vincent. Reclaiming History, Introduction, p. xxxviii
  36. ^ Galloway, Paul (May 18, 1998). "Killing Conspiracy Theories". Chicago Tribune. 
  37. ^
  38. ^ Cornwell, Rupert (November 17, 2013). "For Americans, JFK will never be case closed". The Independent (London). 
  39. ^ "Face it: Oswald did it". The Economist. November 23, 2013. 
  40. ^ Joseph Palermo, "The 50th Anniversary of the Assassination of President John F. Kennedy (Part One), Huffington Post, November 8, 2013
  41. ^ Video on YouTube
  42. ^ Tobar, Hector (November 20, 2013). "The book that cured me of JFK conspiracies once and for all". Los Angeles Times. 
  43. ^ "Oliver Stone: There's nothing in 'JFK' I would go back on -". CNN. November 22, 2013. 
  44. ^ "Remembering John F. Kennedy's Assassination 50 Years Ago; Crisis Inside Air Force One; Marina Oswald Porter Remarried Two Years After JKF's Assassination; Oswald's Widow Marina Opened Up To McMillan About Their Marriage; Fascinating Story of the Pink Suit Jackie Wore the Day JFK Was Assassinated; J.D. Tippit Was Shot Four Times By Lee Harvey Oswald".  
  45. ^ a b c  
  46. ^
  47. ^ a b Lewis, Anthony (April 22, 1998). "Beyond a Shadow of a Doubt".  
  48. ^ Posner, Gerald (January 30, 1999). "The Truth About Memphis".  
  49. ^ Video on YouTube
  50. ^ "Writing in the clear, forceful manner of a reporter in total command of his facts, Posner has produced… the definitive account of a landmark event." Philadelphia Inquirer, April 1998
  51. ^ "Prodigiously researched and painstakingly detailed. Savannah Morning News, May 1988
  52. ^ "Combining fresh reporting with a careful review of the investigation, and using the common sense that is a scarce commodity in this field, Posner does for the King assassination what he did for the JFK killing in his book, 'Case Closed.'" USA Today, April 1988
  53. ^ "'Killing the Dream,'a heavily researched and well-written examination of the facts by author Gerald Posner, strives to lay the question to rest, much to the chagrin of a cadre of conspiracy buffs. Posner succeeds."
  54. ^ "Posner's 'Killing the Dream; is a state-of-the-art review and reconsideration of everything that's known about Ray and the events that led up to King's assassination." "New 'leads' in King case invariably go nowhere," by David J. Garrow, The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, Perspective Section, March 29, 1998, pp. C1–2.
  55. ^
  56. ^ William F. Pepper. An Act of State, rev. ed. (2008), Synopsis, by Mark K. Jensen, Scribd.
  57. ^ Yellin, Emily (December 9, 1999). "Memphis Jury Sees Conspiracy in Martin Luther King's Killing".  
  58. ^ Maslin, Janet (January 2, 2003). "BOOKS OF THE TIMES; Tales From Detroit's Other Industry".  
  59. ^
  60. ^ "An investigative journalist who keeps his narrative in fine rhythm, Posner details the dark side of the heavenly Motown sound",,20139168,00.html
  61. ^ "Most of what Posner presents has been aired before, though seldom as relentlessly and with as much documentation. Like other '60s icons, Motown turns out to have had a side seamy enough to rival that of the Kennedys' Camelot. Posner roasts Motown to a turn to feed pop-culture fans' taste for destroying the idols they once worshipped. Delicious." Booklist, December 2012
  62. ^ Isherwood, Charles (April 14, 2013). "‘Motown: The Musical,' Berry Gordy's Story". The New York Times. 
  63. ^
  64. ^ "Confessions of a Terrorist". Time. August 31, 2003. 
  65. ^ a b
  66. ^
  67. ^ With Friends Like These, by Thomas Lippman, Washington Post, May 29, 2005
  68. ^ Miami Babylon backlash, backstabbing and bitchery by Lesley Abravanel, "Miami Herald", October 14, 2009.
  69. ^ Plagiarist Gerald Posner Nabs TV Deal for Miami Babylon. Where's Our Check? by Tim Elfrink, "Miami New Times", May 27, 2010
  70. ^ Gerald Posner’s Originality Pays Off by Hamilton Nolan, "Gawker", May 27, 2010
  71. ^ "God's Bankers at Simon & Schuster". 
  72. ^ God's Bankers" by Gerald Posner""". 
  73. ^ "Publishers Weekly Review of God's Bankers". 
  74. ^ "Kirkus Review of God's Bankers". 
  75. ^ "Booklist Review of God's Bankers". 
  76. ^ "New York Times Bestseller Nonfiction Hardcover List for February 22, 2015". 
  77. ^
  78. ^ "The Wrong Nogara", by Patricia M. McGoldrick, The Tablet, October 10, 2015, p. 20
  79. ^ "It's high time for Pope Francis to open the Vatican Bank's files". 
  80. ^ "God’s Bankers – Interview with Author Gerald Posner, Part One". 
  81. ^ I Was Wrong About Bush, The Wall Street Journal, 2001-09-25.
  82. ^ Posner, Gerald (October 3, 2006). "An Open Letter to the President". Huffington Post. 
  83. ^ "". Retrieved September 19, 2010. 
  84. ^ a b The Posner Plagiarism Perplex, by Jack Shafer, Slate magazine, February 11, 2010.
  85. ^ a b c "Gerald Posner".  
  86. ^ a b c d e
  87. ^
  88. ^
  89. ^ Bustos, Sergio R. "Gerald Posner resigns from Daily Beast amid plagiarism allegations". Retrieved September 19, 2010. 
  90. ^ Shafer, Jack (February 5, 2010). "Plagiarism at the Daily Beast: Gerald Posner concedes lifting from the Miami Herald. – By Jack Shafer – Slate Magazine". Retrieved September 19, 2010. 
  91. ^ More Posner Plagiarism, by Jack Shafer, Slate magazine, February 8, 2010.
  92. ^ Daily Beast lifts from Salon—again by Joan Walsh. April 1, 2010.
  93. ^ Gerald Posner Plagiarized Several Passages in Miami Babylon, Author Says, by Tim Elfrink, Miami New Times, March 16, 2010.
  94. ^ a b Gerald Posner plagiarized New Times, PBS, and many others, by Tim Elfrink, Miami New Times, March 30, 2010.
  95. ^ Gerald Posner plagiarizes again, this time at book speed, by Tim Elfrink, Miami New Times, March 25, 2010.
  96. ^ Posner Says He Failed to Source Material for Book, by Hillel Italie, ABC News, March 17, 2010.
  97. ^ More Gerald Posner Plagiarism in Miami Babylon, From New Times, PBS, and Many Others, by Tim Elfrink, Miami New Times, March 30, 2010.
  98. ^ a b Attorney Mark Lane Retained by Author Gerald Posner to Represent Him in Media Case, May 13, 2010.
  99. ^ Gerald Posner Hires Rush to Judgment Author Mark Lane in Plagiarism Case, by Tim Elfrink, Miami New Times, May 13, 2010.
  100. ^ Plagiarism Plagued Posner Hires Grassy Knoll Guru to Take On New Times, by Jessica Sick, "NBC Miami", May 13, 2010.
  101. ^ Gerald Posner Plagiarized in Why America Slept and Secrets of the Kingdom, Research Shows, by Tim Elfrink, May 18, 2010.
  102. ^ a b Posner Plagiarizes Again, by Tim Elfrink, May 20, 2010.
  103. ^ Golding, Bruce (May 4, 2013). To Kill a Mockingbird' owner sues to reclaim copyright to novel"'". Archived from the original on 2013-06-07. 
  104. ^ a b To Kill a Mockingbird' author settles copyright suit against 2 defendants; terms undisclosed"'".  
  105. ^
  106. ^


See also

  • Mengele: The Complete Story (1986)
  • Warlords of Crime: Chinese Secret Societies – The New Mafia (1988)
  • Bio-Assassins (1989)
  • Hitler's Children: Sons and Daughters of Leaders of the Third Reich Talk About Their Fathers and Themselves (1991) ISBN 978-0-394-58299-3
  • Case Closed: Lee Harvey Oswald and the Assassination of JFK (1993) ISBN 978-0-679-41825-2
  • Citizen Perot: His Life and Times (1996)
  • Killing the Dream: James Earl Ray and the Assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. (1998) ISBN 978-0-375-50082-4
  • Why America Slept: The Failure to Prevent 9/11 (2003) ISBN 978-0-375-50879-0
  • Motown: Music, Money, Sex, and Power (Music of the Great Lakes) (2003) Random House ISBN 978-0-375-50062-6
  • Secrets of the Kingdom: The Inside Story of the Saudi-U.S. Connection (2005) ISBN 978-1-4000-6291-1
  • Miami Babylon: Crime, Wealth and Power – A Dispatch From the Beach (2009) ISBN 978-1-4165-7656-3
  • God's Bankers: A History of Money and Power at the Vatican (2015) Simon & Schuster ISBN 978-1-4165-7657-0


Before Posner filed an answer, he and one other defendant settled with Lee and were dismissed from the lawsuit.[104] The parties did not disclose the terms of the settlement.[104] Posner told the Miami Herald that, "I have always maintained that not a single contention about me in the complaint was accurate. I was simply the wrong person named in the wrong lawsuit." [105] And to Law360, he said, "I am gratified the complaint was dismissed. There was never any basis for this lawsuit against me."[106]

On May 3, 2013, Posner was named in a federal lawsuit brought by famed author Harper Lee in Manhattan. Lee claimed that Samuel Pinkus, her literary agent's son-in-law, tricked her into signing away her rights to To Kill a Mockingbird, directing the royalties to be paid into a corporation formed by Posner for that purpose.[103]

Harper Lee lawsuit

Posner subsequently hired attorney Mark Lane, threatening litigation against the Miami New Times on grounds of tortious interference (i.e., that its investigation and reporting of this case damaged Posner's business relationship with his publishers) and emotional distress.[98][99][100] In a press release, Posner stated "Although I'm convinced Lee Harvey Oswald assassinated President Kennedy, I've always believed that had Mark Lane represented Oswald, he would have won an acquittal. That's why Mark Lane was the obvious choice as my own attorney."[98] Soon thereafter, the Miami New Times published evidence of additional plagiarism from multiple sources in both Secrets of the Kingdom and Why America Slept.[101] According to Poynter Institute senior scholar Roy Peter Clark, "This constitutes plagiarism by any definition I can think of....The capturing of someone else's material that is this extensive cannot, in my opinion, have been done accidentally."[102] Evidence was also presented indicating that Posner had repeatedly "scrubbed" elements of the journalism scandal from his WorldHeritage page.[102] According to Posner, the media reports detailing his journalistic transgressions were actually the result of a "coordinated effort" to "discredit my book Miami Babylon" because of the book's "unvarnished and investigative history".

In 2010, Posner was the chief investigative reporter at the Daily Beast. Following the revelation that a number of Posner's stories for the Beast contained portions plagiarized from articles in other publications, Posner resigned from the Beast.[84][89][90][91][92] According to Posner, the plagiarism was inadvertent and the result of the "compressed deadlines" of the Beast and confusing his assembled research with his own writing in the "master files" he assembled on each story. Allegations of plagiarism also surfaced concerning his book, Miami Babylon (October 2009).[93][94] Posner said the Miami Babylon plagiarism occurred because of a new system of "trailing endnotes", because an individual he interviewed read one of the plagiarized sources and reiterated it during the interview, and because he mistook other people's writing for his own after scanning source documents into a computer database.[95][96] The Miami New Times also found that Posner "seems to add, subtract, or misattribute quotes" and displayed a series of such "apparently altered or misattributed quotes".[94][97] For all the examples shown, Posner cited a source article, where an examination of the source showed that the quote given in Posner's writing was either substantially altered (e.g., words added), never said by the subject, misattributed, or used out of context.

Plagiarism and quote falsification


Posner is married to author and journalist Trisha Posner.[88]

Personal life

Posner was also the consulting producer of the film documentary, "The Barrel of a Gun", by Tigre Hill, about the 1981 murder of a Philadelphia police officer and the convicted murderer, Mumia Abu-Jamal.[86]

Posner has also been a historical consultant on two Holocaust-related episodes - "Liberation and Revenge" and "Frenzied Killing", both in 2005 - of the documentary series "Auschwitz: The Nazis and the 'Final Solution'".[85][86] He was also the consultant to "Inheritance," a 2006 documentary about the story of Monika Hertwig and her effort to grapple with the enormity of the crimes of her father, Kraków-Płaszów concentration camp commander, Amon Goeth.[86] And in 2013, Posner was again the Historical Consultant, this time for PBS/NOVA "Cold Case JFK", an updated ballistics examination of the JFK assassination.[86]

Posner was a regular panelist on HistoryCENTER, the History Channel's weekly current affairs discussion program, from 2000 to 2002.[85] He has also had an on-air role in broadcast documentaries, including among others the 1993 Frontline "Who Was Lee Harvey Oswald?"; "Who Killed JFK: The Final Chapter" (1994); "Hitler and Stalin, A Legacy of Hate"(1994); "The Secret KGB JFK Assassination File" (1999); "Jack Ruby on Trial" History Channel (2004); "Gangs of New York", History Channel (2002); "Conspiracy", TV Series (2004–05); "Beyond Biba - A Portrait of Barbara Hulanicki", (2009); "Roads to Memphis", a look at the Martin Luther King, Jr. assassination, American Experience PBS, 2010; and "JFK Assassination: The Definitive Guide", History Channel (2013).[85][86][87]

Film projects

[84], until he resigned over plagiarism charges in 2010.Daily Beast Posner was the Chief Investigative Reporter for The [83]. He worked on all his projects with his wife Trisha Posner, who is also an author and artist.Phi Beta Kappa, and The Committee to Protect Journalists, International PEN, Authors Guild, Posner is also a member of the National Writers Union. A member of the National Advisory Board of the Countdown with Keith Olbermann, as well as other national shows on the History Channel, CNN, FOX News, and CBS. He was a frequent guest on MSNBC's Today Show. He was a regular contributor to NBC's Daily Telegraph, and the Miami Herald, the Time, Newsweek, Talk, Vanity Fair, The New Yorker, The New York Times, he reverted to his original position that Bush was a bad president stifled by his stubbornness. He also wrote about investigative issues for Huffington Post published on The [82] Later he changed his opinion again; in October 2006, in "An Open Letter to the President",[81]

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