Dec 21 2004, 09:18 AM
In the 1940s a group of right-wing politicians and
businessmen in Texas joined what became known as the Suite 8F group. The
name comes from the room in the Lamar Hotel in Houston where they held
their meetings. Members of the group included Lyndon Johnson, George and
Herman Brown (Brown & Root), Jesse H. Jones (multi-millionaire
investor in a large number of organizations and chairman of the
Reconstruction Finance Corporation), Gus Wortham (American General
Insurance Company), Robert Kerr (Kerr-McGee Oil Industries), James
Abercrombie (Cameron Iron Works), William Hobby (Governor of Texas),
Richard Russell (chairman of the Committee of Manufactures, Committee on
Armed Forces and Committee of Appropriations), Albert Thomas (chairman
of the House Appropriations Committee) and John Connally (Governor of
Texas). Political fixers and LBJ cronies, Alvin Wirtz and Ed Clark, were
also members of 8F.
After the war George and Herman Brown (of Brown & Root) joined with
other members of 8F to form Texas Eastern Transmission Company. Johnson
helped this organization to buy the government owned Big Inch and Little
Big Inch pipelines. This gave them control of a considerable amount of
the petroleum supply to the East. In fact, this group become involved in
all the government contracts obtained by Brown and Root by LBJ.
It was this group that was giving LBJ his orders before 1960. LBJ tried
to publicly distance himself from this group when he became vice
president. 8F had been opposed to LBJ becoming vice president as they
thought it would reduce his power. How wrong they were. The group did
extremely well under LBJ as president. For example, Project Mohole and
the NASA’s Spacecraft Center in Houston. Albert Thomas played a key
role in this success.
The group also won the vast majority of government contracts granted
during the Vietnam War. Suite 8F formed a new company called RMK-BRJ to
obtain these contracts. This included Halliburton who took over Brown
& Root in 1962. These contracts included building jet runways,
dredging channels for ships, hospitals, prisons, communications
facilities, and building American bases from Da Nang to Saigon. RMK-BRJ
did 97% of the construction work in Vietnam. The other 3% went to local
Vietnamese contractors. Between 1965 and 1972 Brown & Root
(Halliburton) alone obtained revenues of $380 million from its work in
Senator Abraham Ribicoff of Connecticut attempted to expose this
scandal. He claimed that millions was being paid in kickbacks. An
investigation by the General Accounting Office discovered that by 1967
RMK-BRJ had “lost” $120 million. However, GAO never managed to
identify the people obtaining these kickbacks.
Anti-war protesters decided that George Brown was the mastermind behind
this corruption. Demonstrations against him took place everywhere Brown
went. It got so bad that Brown advised LBJ to withdraw from Vietnam.
Brown told LBJ that if he did not do this, the war would destroy both
men. It did destroy LBJ but Brown survived the protests.
LBJ’s resignation as president was a body blow to the Suite 8F group.
However, they had made preparations and Connally had already got Richard
Nixon involved with the group. He arranged for Nixon to meet fellow
members at his ranch in Texas. This resulted in Connally becoming
Secretary of the Treasury and Jesse H. Jones as Secretary of Commerce.
However, they were not able to obtain the success that LBJ achieved in
the 1950s and 1960s. The main reason for this was that LBJ was no longer
able to control the chairmanship of the important Senate committees. The
group was particularly hurt by the death of Albert Thomas (chairman of
the House Appropriations Committee).
The end of the Vietnam War resulted in a sharp decline in Halliburton's
fortunes. In the 1980s it was unable to get very many government
contracts and for a while it looked like the company would go out of
business. Then they appointed Dick Cheney as Halliburton's CEO. He then
adopted the policies that had been pioneered by Herman and George Brown.
George Bush was Brown & Root's LBJ.
(INSERTED NOTE: Many interesting replies to the above
post are included on the forum, including these by Robert Charles
There may be a more direct and tangible relationship
between Halliburton and Dealey Plaza than just 'deep politics'
Page 769 of CD 1322 [a list of Jack Ruby's personal effects] includes
Haliburton [sic] Oil Company
Does the name "Raul" [or Raoul] ring any bells with anyone?...
...There is a wealth of anecdotal and circumstantial
evidence that Ruby was as well connected to big oil money as he was to
Dallas law enforcement.
By his own admission, Ruby went to the Hunt building just prior to the
assassination, ostensibly to drive a new female acquaintance named
Connie Trammell for a job interview. It has been suggested - with reason
- that Ruby's name was expunged from the Hunt Oil visitors' registry on
that date, meaning that Ruby would have visited at least one of the
Hunts at the very time a Hunt fils was helping draft and pay for the
black-bordered anti-JFK newspaper ad that ran on the day of his arrival
in Dallas. Lamar Hunt's phone number was among Ruby's effects. FBI
interest in the above was superficial.
According to an FBI interview with a conman who worked with Ruby on
sports-betting scams, the two of them waxed a number of Dallas oil men
for big money, including the elder Hunt. FBI efforts to corroborate this
allegation don't exist, in the extant record.
There are FBI reports indicating an otherwise unplumbed relationship
between Ruby and Clint Murchison Jr. FBI efforts to corroborate this
allegation don't exist, in the extant record.
When asked to list his closest friends in Dallas, Ruby provided a list
that included Gordon McClendon and Dewey Groom. Both names were expunged
prior to publication of the list in the Warren Commission volumes.
Though much of McClendon's money came from other interests, he also made
money by dabbling in oil. As McClendon was a candidate for the
Democratic party's primary Senate nomination - had he succeeded, he
would have ousted sitting Democratic Senator Yarborough - one might have
anticipated the FBI would plumb the relationship between the two men. If
there is a single Bureau interview with McClendon, I have yet to find
While it strikes one unsurprising that a social-climbing aspirant to
"class" like Ruby would have been acquainted with the
underbelly of big oil money, I was disturbed to see the official FBI
effort undertaken to wash from the record any trace of those
connections. One assumes that once it was officially decided Ruby must
be depicted, of necessity, as another lone nut, all evidence even
suggesting anything to the contrary was scuttled, including Ruby's own
role as a one-time Bureau informant.