Today we welcomed the long-awaited Knoxville New Sentinel’s coverage of Truth at Last, and it greatly exceeded our expectations, as features editor Susan Alexander, assistant features editor Christina Southern and freelance writer Melissa Priode combined, along with Joel Freedman, to create a spectacular local news front page layout that was entirely devoted to Amelia Earhart: The Truth at Last.
When I got the hard copy newspaper today, I was stunned to see the book cover and promo on the top of the front page, with the story and three photos taking up the entire front page of the local news section. The layout is spectacular and I couldn’t ask for more in that regard. They did a fantastic job, and we’ll probably never have better Amazon rankings that we have right now. With a circulation of 123,000 daily, the most prominent thing about today’s issue was arguably Truth at Last. Joel Freedman’s review is here, and here is Melissa Priode’s story, which briefly looks at my background and relationship to the book.
We needed this desperately, as the book has been languishing in Amazon sales ranking hell of late, but right now we’re looking very good indeed, which illustrates the power that a medium-size city newspaper has to help a struggling book when it has a mind to do so. Sincere thanks to Susan, Christina, Melissa and Joel for their invaluable assistance in this most worthy cause.
Leonore, an alert Earhart enthusiast from the UK, informed me that Tom Crouch and American Heritage magazine had once again teamed up to do their worst in misinforming readers about the so-called Earhart mystery and recent efforts to solve it.
The lengthy article, “Amelia Found?“ was a virtual repeat of Crouch’s Summer 2007 puff piece in Information and Technology Magazine that extolled Ric Gillespie, TIGHAR and Elgen Long, while curtly dismissing Fred Goerner, Tom Devine and all who believe in the Saipan truth as “conspiracy theorists.”
At the urging of my UK correspondent, I wrote the below missive to American Heritage and Tom Crouch, knowing of course that I was completely wasting my time, but keeping mind that the old axiom, “Nothing ventured, nothing gained,“ should always be respected. Following is the letter I just wrote to American Heritage editors:
I’ve just been informed about Tom Crouch’s Summer 2012 article about Amelia Earhart in American Heritage, and read it with mounting disgust. Once again, American Heritage and Tom Crouch, senior Smithsonian Air and Space curator, have teamed up to write almost exactly the same article they put out in 2007 for the 70th anniversary of AE’s loss. The piece is an extensive discussion of TIGHAR’s vapid, worn-out theory, albeit with a passing mention of the possibility that Gillespie might be wrong, because “most researchers agree that AE crashed and sank near Howland Island“ or something similarly inane. Mr. Crouch’s piece was probably written before the late June 2012 publication of my new book, Amelia Earhart: The Truth at Last, which presents the most comprehensive case ever for the presence and death of Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan on Saipan, but that has little or nothing to do with Mr. Crouch or American Heritage‘s aversion to the truth in the Earhart case.
As professional historians, it’s impossible to imagine that Mr. Crouch and the editors at American Heritage are unaware of the mountains of evidence that place Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan on Saipan. Thousands, if not millions of murderers have gone to their executions based on the tiniest fraction of the witness testimony that’s been given by many that places Earhart and Noonan on Saipan. Even if you reject this overwhelming evidence, can you honestly claim that Mr. Crouch’s piece is a fair treatment of the massive evidence gathered over many decades by researchers such as Fred Goerner, Joe Gervais, Tom Devine, Vincent V. Loomis, Oliver Knaggs, Bill Prymak and others? Of course not. Something else is afoot here, driven by the same abject motivations that have informed the government-media establishment’s policy of complete denial of the truth in the Earhart disappearance from the beginning — protecting FDR’s reputation and their own longtime investments in the TIGHAR and crash-and-sank deceptions being prominent among them. Can anyone who is remotely informed doubt that the U.S. government and its media toadies, of which American Heritage is in the vanguard, are still engaged in the willful and purposeful suppression of the truth?
I dissected Mr. Crouch’s 2007 piece line by line in the final chapter of my book, and clearly exposed his assertions as pure U.S. government-issue poppycock. (Due to the media’s complete refusal to acknowledge the existence of my book, Mr. Crouch and American Heritage may also be unaware of it. In that case I have attached the section of its last chapter that addresses Mr. Crouch’s 2007 article, as well as the following section, which addresses Gillespie’s fantasies). Now, in his 2012 repeat of the same nonsense, over several pages of propaganda, ostensibly covering the gamut of ideas about AE’s fate, Mr. Crouch could manage only the following about Saipan, far less than even in 2007, when he at least mentioned Devine’s work, although inaccurately and dismissively. Note the prominent use of the tainted word “conspiracy“ in his reference:
What are we to make of all the conspiracy theories? Is there a small flame of truth flickering somewhere beneath all that smoke? Most likely not. In three-quarters of a century of looking, no researcher has produced a shred of hard evidence to suggest that Earhart and Noonan were either spies or prisoners of the Japanese.
Not “a shred,“ insists Mr. Crouch. How can he so blithely ignore the hundreds of freely given and honest accounts of witnesses in the Marshalls and Saipan, GI veterans of Saipan, and three flag officer statements to Fred Goerner that Earhart died on Saipan, and much more? Quite easily, apparently, if he — and you — have an agenda of complete denial of the truth and suppression of the facts.
American Heritage needs to be reminded that their readership is not totally populated by morons and lemmings, so I hope this brief letter will at least accomplish that modest goal. I also know that American Heritage does not possess the integrity or intellectual honesty to publish this letter, but I’ll make sure I inform as many as I can about the continuing Earhart travesty and your role in perpetuating it.
This letter has never been published, as of today’s update (Jan. 9, 2014).
Tim Burchett, the mayor of Knox County, Tenn. (both counties and cities have mayors in Tennessee) was listening during my Sept. 4 radio appearance with Phil Williams on WOKI. He contacted me and expressed his interest in the Earhart story, and I finally met him at his office in downtown Knoxville yesterday. We talked for about 40 minutes, and I brought him two copies of Truth at Last.
His father was in the Navy in World War II, he said, and he (Tim) had always been interested in the Earhart case. He asked many intelligent questions, but mainly listened as I explained the situation — both with the so-called Earhart “mystery” and the current media blackout of Truth at Last. Such is the pathetic level of interest in the now three-month old book that this blog registered only one visitor on Oct. 1. To say the book and this blog and web site are on life support and need serious help is severe understatement. Seriously: One visitor? Can you spell “hopeless”?
Perhaps it is, but the mayor has some ideas about how he can help this book and its worthy cause, and I hope to be reporting soon on those efforts and their results.
Thanks also to Carol Anderson of the Knoxville Welcome Wagon Club, who was also listening Sept. 4 and has asked me to speak to her group’s monthly meeting of about 50 women ages 50 to 70 during the first week of November — the day after the most important election we’ve seen in our lifetimes, in fact. I didn’t realize this when I accepted her invitation, but since she had to change a previously scheduled speaker to accommodate me, I’ll have to live with the possibility that I might be forced to address this group on the morning of a national tragedy. Let’s hope and pray that will not be the case.
Postscript: Added March 12, 2013:
I never heard from Mayor Tim again, and he ignored several emails I sent. He proved to be just another politician, full of false promises.