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Warren Commission Hearings: Vol. I - Page 371« Previous | Next »

(Testimony of Robert Edward Oswald Lee Resumed)

Mr. Oswald.
Yes, sir, I feel certain that it did.
Mr. Jenner.
And in your response to your brother's letter, did you advert to that particular portion of his letter? To the best of your recollection?
Mr. Oswald.
Yes, sir-I was just making a note on that. I didn't realize you would ask me that so soon. I do believe I asked him why he hated the United States.
Mr. Jenner.
Now, have you given us exhausted your recollection as to the content of the letter you wrote in response to the letter of November 8, Commission Exhibit 294?
Mr. Oswald.
Yes, sir; I £eel I have.
Mr. Jenner.
Well, now, let us turn, if we might, to Letter No. 26, which is Exhibit 295, an eight-page letter.
Mr. Oswald.
All right, sir.
Mr. Jenner.
Mr. Chairman, to summarize this letter, if I may, for you, it is an eight-page letter. Lee Harvey Oswald sets forth in it extensively his philosophies, what they purport to be as of that time, the reasons why he has decided to defect to the Soviet Union.
He complained about the economic system in the United States.
Mr. Dulles.
Mr. Jenner.
System-which he stated exploited all of its workers.
He complained of segregation and unemployment, and automation in the United States.
He stressed disapproval of American foreign policy, which he characterized as being one of imperialism. In framework, it is framed as a response partly to some questions that our present witness has posed in a letter, which Mr. Robert Oswald had written in response to the letter of November 8, such as a question as to why Lee Harvey Oswald and his fellow workers and communists would like to see the present capitalist system of the United States overthrown-he having made an indication to the witness in that respect.
Apparently in Robert's letter to Lee, he had couched it in terms of suggesting that apparently Lee Harvey Oswald thought he might have some advantage economically if he went to Russia, and Lee Harvey Oswald responded, "So you speak of advantages. Do you think that is why I am here, for personal material advantages? Happiness is not based on one's self, does not consist of a small home, of taking and getting. Happiness is taking part in a struggle where there is no borderline between one's own personal world and the world in general. I never believed I would find more material advantages at this stage of development in the Soviet Union than I might have had in the United States."
Mr. Mckenzie.
At this point, Mr. Chairman, I might also add, in connection with what Mr. Jenner has stated about this letter, that the letter appears, in answering questions that Robert may have posed in a previous letter to Lee Harvey Oswald--it appears to have been lifted in some respects out of a communist text, and it even appears to me and this is pure supposition, that it could possibly have been written by someone else with Lee Harvey Oswald coming back in and adding other things to it it is the longest letter received, consisting of some eight pages. A careful reading of the letter will show only one or two misspelled words, whereas in the other letters there are a number of misspelled words.
And I don't know what that adds or detracts from the record. But I do feel that there is a difference in the letters as you read all of them put together.
Mr. Dulles.
I am glad you called that to our attention. It is an interesting observation.
Mr. Oswald.
And I would like to, if I may, point out something I observed in between the letter of November 8, 1959, and the letter of November 26, 1959.
In the letter of November 8, 1959, towards the last paragraph on the last page, I quote, "I really don't see what we could talk about. If you want to send me money, that I can use. But I do not expect to be able to pay it back."
I now refer to the letter of November 26, 1959, on the last page, the second last paragraph, "I have no money problems at all"--underlined.
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