Vince Foster: Lest we forget

Published 15 years ago -  - 15y ago 7


It’s been seven years since Vince Foster was found dead in an obscure park in McLean, Virginia, with a gun in his hand. The date was July 20, 1993. As deputy White House counsel, he was the highest ranking government official to die in office since John F. Kennedy.The government decided that Foster had committed suicide. But the more one delves into the matter, the more one smells a huge White House coverup. Vince Foster, as we all know, was about as close to the Clintons as anyone could be. In fact, he and Bill Clinton were classmates in primary school in Hope, Arkansas, and Foster worked with Hillary at the Rose Law Firm. He came to Washington at the behest of the Clintons to serve as the President’s personal deputy counsel.

Much has been written about the strange circumstances of Foster’s death. But the one book that is unequivocal and unapologetic in its belief that Foster’s death was engineered by the White House is Michael Kellett’s The Murder of Vince Foster, which is dedicated to Foster. It was published in 1995. Kellett writes:

This book is about more than murder. It is about arrogance and the abuse of power. It is about government officials caring more about their careers, money, and their political philosophies than for truth.

It will also become clear that one man stood above it all. When speaking to the graduating class of the University of Arkansas Law School, Vince Foster spoke these words:

“Sometimes doing the right thing will be very unpopular. … When the heat of controversy swarms around you, the conviction that you did the right thing will be the best salve and the best sleeping medicine.”

When the heat swarmed around him, he did the right thing. He could not be bribed or threatened.

To understand what happened to Vince Foster, one must understand the context in which these events took place. It seems that in July 1993, federal investigators were about to go through Foster’s files and the files at the Rose Law Firm to find evidence of wrongdoing in the Whitewater affair. In fact, on the very day of Foster’s death, the F.B.I. issued a subpoena and took records out of the office of Little Rock municipal judge David L. Hale, who later pleaded guilty to defrauding the government and became a key witness in the Whitewater investigation by independent counsel Kenneth W. Starr.

And so, in July 1993, Vince Foster was faced with a dilemma: open his files to the federal investigators or destroy them. Kellett writes:

Clinton and Foster were on the phone the evening of July 19 discussing the impending federal investigation. It was no friendly chat. Foster told Clinton in no uncertain terms that he would not destroy evidence; that he was not going to jail to protect the Bill ‘n’ Hill gang.

Kellett quotes Alan Dershowitz, the Harvard defense lawyer, who said:

In my 30 years of experience as a criminal defense lawyer, I have noticed one general distinction between the actions of innocent and guilty clients: The innocent save every scrap of paper in the hope and expectation that somewhere in the boxes of files, bills, phone logs, and diaries they will find some proof of their innocence; the guilty, on the other hand, destroy as much as they can, in the fear that somewhere the prosecutor will find something incriminating.

And that’s what the Clintons have been doing all these years, destroying the evidence that would put them behind bars. And so, a showdown evidently took place between Foster and his Arkansas colleagues over what to do to thwart the federal investigators. Foster would not do what they wanted. His conscience gave him no choice. Several months before this showdown, he had told the students at the University of Arkansas Law School:

The reputation you develop for intellectual and ethical integrity will be your greatest asset or your worst enemy. There is no victory, no advantage, no fee, no favor, which is worth even a blemish on your reputation for intellect and integrity.

Since Foster could not be persuaded by Clinton and his gang to do what they knew had to be done to save their skins, the decision was made to get rid of him. How was it to be done? Foster’s murder was to be made to look like a suicide. But his body had to be found quickly, so that they could get into his office as soon as possible. But where was he to be done in? The night before his death, Foster was visited at his home by Bruce Lindsey and another unidentified Washington lawyer. Kellett writes:

Lindsey was a stock broker in Arkansas, whose firm received big contracts to sell state bonds when Clinton was governor and also contributed heavily to Clinton’s campaigns. He is now Clinton’s personal attorney and it was in his office that numerous Whitewater related files eventually showed up. Lindsey said the two invited Foster to see a movie, but he declined. …

Surprisingly, one would think Lindsey, who knew Foster, would have known that Foster was definitely not the type to want to go to a movie with two other middle-aged men on a Monday night. … Reader, when was the last time you saw three middle-aged men go to a movie?

Incidentally, Clinton, as part of his 20-minute chat, also invited Foster to come over and see a movie at the White House. And who was with Clinton at the time? None other than Webb Hubbell, the former number two man in the Justice Department who quit when his activities as president of Hillary’s Rose Law Firm started being scrutinized.

This was the middle of July, and Foster and his wife had spent the weekend with the Hubbells at a vacation resort. What did Hubbell and Foster talk about that weekend? Did Hubbell bring back to Clinton the bad news that, try as he did, he could not convince Foster to cooperate? In any case, Foster went to his White House office that Tuesday morning, was visited by Hubbell, took phone calls which were all duly noted in his phone log, had lunch in his office, read the newspaper, and left the office at about 1 p.m. for an appointment somewhere. He took his White House pager with him.

Where did Foster go? His appointment book has never been found. All we know is that at about 5:30 p.m. Foster’s body was discovered at Fort Marcy Park by a witness whose identity was not made public. The Park Police got there at about 6:10 p.m. Kellett estimates that Foster was killed at no later than 3:45 p.m. and that his body was transported to Ft. Marcy Park and laid out to appear as if it had been a suicide. Kellett writes:

All the available evidence overwhelmingly supports the conclusion that Vincent Foster Jr. was murdered, and his body transported to Fort Marcy Park, and there is absolutely no evidence to the contrary.

A good deal of the book is devoted to an examination of the evidence. For example, neither the bullet nor skull fragments were ever found at the scene. Foster’s clothes were covered with carpet fibers, and there was a relatively small amount of blood, suggesting that the shooting had occurred elsewhere. Also, none of Foster’s fingerprints were on the gun held in his right hand, but a fingerprint belonging to someone else was on the gun. There was no dirt on his shoes although he would have had to walk 600 feet on a dirt path from his car to where his body was found. Also, the location of his eyeglasses indicated that some other person must have tossed them there.

The White House was informed of the “suicide” at about 7:05 p.m., and less than two hours later the Clinton team-Kellett calls them the four ghouls-grieving over the sudden death of their beloved colleague, rushed back to the White House, broke into his office, stole documents out of his files, which should have been sealed pending an investigation by the F.B.I. into the suspicious death of a high-ranking White House official.

Normally, the F.B.I. investigates murders and suicides involving government officials. But Clinton had fired F.B.I. chief William Sessions the day before Foster’s death and placed the investigation in the hands of the Park Police whose main functions are chasing litterbugs and issuing parking tickets! The Clintonistas knew that the Park Police could be intimidated by the power of the White House to hand over Foster’s wallet and pager and not question the ransacking of Foster’s office. Someone had already stolen Foster’s briefcase from his car in the park which, six days later, wound up in the White House with a forged “suicide note” torn into 27 pieces. How did the briefcase get there? Who stole it out of the car? Who forged the note and why weren’t Foster’s fingerprints on it? The Fiske commission never bothered to find out. Kellett writes:

This was not a marvelously well-planned fake suicide-if it were not for the president and politics, an average detective would have considered the thought of suicide laughable.

Since 1995, Kellett has enlarged his book considerably to include much more than just the Vince Foster case. It has a new title: America Needs a Verdict, and it can be obtained by calling 1-800-KILLARY (545-5279). Price: $22.90 plus $4.00 shipping and handling. You can send a check to: CLS Publishing, 9350-F Snowden River Parkway, PMB 279, Columbia, MD 21045.

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