You can also visit the Perfect Killer web site which has many source documents and details about the substantial fact on which the fiction is based.

Monday, November 21, 2005

It's hard to believe, but having African-American members of the Greenwood Country Club is still a topic of amazement and current discussion. Yet, the Greenwood Commonwealth newspaper ran a lengthy story today about the issue.

"A couple of years ago, Dr. Roger Huey and his family joined the Greenwood Country Club.

What made their entry into the invitation-only membership of the private social club remarkable was their race, African American.

Since then, the Hueys have moved from Greenwood, but two other African-American couples have joined the 400-member club.

The 85-year-old Greenwood Country Club - originally white and Protestant - has offered memberships for decades to persons who are Jewish and Catholic and to those who are of Asian and Middle Eastern descent.

Most white members think the addition of African Americans is no big deal, said Charles Bowman, an architect and lifelong resident of Greenwood.

"People judge people on how they act," said Bowman, who is white.

Banker Jim Quinn, another white member, said, "Personally, I think it has gone just fine."

Both talked about getting to know black members Tony Johnson and Dr. Moses Newsome, who are associated with Mississippi Valley State University.

Johnson joined the club two years ago and Newsome a year ago."

The rest of the article is here.

But do the math: 400 members, two are black. The Mississippi Delta is about 50% black.

Much of this, perhaps most of this disparity, is economic. And the economic disparity? Clearly the result of historical racism combined with poor public school education and a lack of jobs and other economic opportunities.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Perdue creates a Delta thriller

Syndicated columnist Bill Minor, who usually writes about politics in Mississippi, got hold of Perfect Killer and decided to write about that for a change. The column below is copyrighted by Bill Minor and is reprinted with his permission.

Perdue creates a Delta thriller
By: Bill Minor, Capitol Correspondent

JACKSON - The Mississippi Delta, Itta Bena at that, is an unlikely setting for a psychological thriller laced with deadly national ramifications, but ex-Jacksonian Lewis Perdue somehow pulls it off.

Perdue, now a Sonoma, Calif., consultant who has produced several other modern thrillers, comes up with a doozie of a tale built around a weird combat medicine that a mad American war hero general with presidential ambitions wants to make a staple of the U.S. military.

The whole idea of the combat medicine is a cutting edge drug that turns ordinary grunt soldiers into psychopathic killing machines.

And Gen. Clark Braxton wants to inject American troops with Xantaeus, making them such deadly efficient killers, that, according to his reasoning, the United States can vastly reduce the size and cost of its military forces while making them more effective.

To put his master plan into operation, however, Braxton must first be elected president of the United States, as an independent, capitalizing on his military heroism mystique to win the presidency.

Anyone getting in the way of accomplishing his goal is in danger of losing his life.

Soldiers doctored with this secret drug lose fear, any regret or conscience about killing another human being. The grave danger Xantaeus poses to humanity is that the killer instinct remains permanently with many to whom it is administered.

This means that thousands of psychopathic killers - people who appear normal but kill without any compunction - could be turned loose on the world.

Project Enduring Valor has been developing the drug for years and testing it clandestinely on American military forces - apparently with tacit approval of the Pentagon. Braxton has gotten control of the scientist with the expertise to produce the drug and the company he created.

"Perfect Killer" is the title of Perdue's novel. Inevitably, it brings to mind Doctor Strangelove and how international carnage could result from military power that gets terribly out of control.

Perdue's tale becomes quite timely right now because the nation has been thrown into a wartime mentality ever since the U.S. invasion of Iraq in March 2003. And now nearly three years later, 140,000 servicemen are bogged down there fighting a guerrilla insurgency that daily is costing American lives.

The whole idea of chemically creating soldiers who are remorselessly efficient killers isn't as far-fetched as one may imagine. In the history of warfare, according to evidence Perdue produces, it has been done for centuries by varying methods, all the way from Inca warriors who went into battle fortified by chewing on coca leaves to rum rations issued to British sailors.

Perdue's protagonist in "Perfect Killer" is Dr. Brad Stone, a neurosurgeon from Delta plantation wealth who comes back to bury his mother at Itta Bena. At the cemetery he is surprised when a beauteous black woman he fondly remembers from the days when his Greenwood high school was first integrated embraces him.

She is Vanessa Thompson, who has gone on to become a nationally famous civil rights attorney and, strangely, is defending an elderly white racist convicted of murder. Unknown to Brad, she drops a tape cassette into his topcoat pocket. At that moment a gunshot rings out, leaving Vanessa dying in his arms.

That starts Brad's precariously wild ride into the dark precincts of General Braxton's mad secret plan to grab national political power and implement Project Enduring Valor on a massive scale.

It happens that the old racist Vanessa is defending had been one of the war veterans used as guinea pigs in an abandoned POW camp in Mississippi for experiments to develop the combat medicine that could turn ordinary soldiers into killing machines.

The dying old racist, after being kept a virtual prisoner in government hospitals, manages to tell Vanessa the whole story of the experiments to get Xantaeus ready for marketing as the Pentagon's secret weapon.

All of which turns the unsuspecting Dr. Brad Stone into a hunted man, targeted by Braxton and his widespread network of experienced killers.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Virtual Tour: headed for iPod Video?

I'd be interested in your opinion of whether a "Virtual Tour" of Perfect Killer works.

So much of the book is NON-fiction that I'm trying to give readers a sense of the people, places and things in the book. I have keyed a lot of the photos to specific passages in the book, and have also gathered thumbnails categorized by place.

I've used Google Earth Pro for some of the tours (such as the volcanic cones in the Napa Valley) but fear that the video files are too large for most people to download well. All of t his may actually work better as an e-book where the passages from the book text are hyperlinked to the local device, thus allowing instant access and better context sensitivity ... Maybe even works as an "audio-visual" book for something like the video iPod ... the images and video would change as appropriate to fit the audio ... sort of like a slideshow.

The Virtual Tour is at:

Obviously this is an experimental project and I'd very much appreciate your comments

Monday, September 26, 2005

Busy Mississippi Tour for Perfect Killer

After nearly being stranded in Houston on Thursday as Hurricane Rita bore down on the South again, I finally made it to Jackson.

Saturday saw a great signing at Lemuria Book Store. Among the people visiting was a representative of my old boss, U.S. Senator Thad Cochran who had to have a signed copy of the first book I have set in Mississippi.

Later, I had a reading for a group of supporters of the Mississippi Center for Justice, (which gets 5% of the royalties from Perfect Killer.)

While taking a walk today, I shot a photo of a Passion Flower, one of the beautiful blossoms that grows from a vine that is everywhere this time of year.

Tomorrow, I head for Greenville with a television appearance on Wednesday morning ( 6 a.m., CDT) to talk about Books 'n Blues, then over to Square Books (owned by my cousin Richard Howorth) in Oxford for another signing.

Thursday, I will be signing at the base book store at Naval Air Station, Meridian.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Virtual Tour Mostly Live

Yes, I know I need to do some cosmetic work on the thumbnail pages to get the little images to line up correctly, but the rest of the Perfect Killer Virtual Tour is pretty much operational.

I will post more photos as time allows.

Just a warning: where are a number of .mpg video files that are quite large and will require long downloads if you have SBC (Slow Balky Connection) DSL (Digital Snail Line) like I do.

I uploaded the .mpgs (set the upload then went to bed) because I know some people -- like Comcast users and people staying in hotels -- don't have to deal with SBC's Third-World Internet performance.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Virtual Tour Shaping up

I'm creating an online virtual tour of Perfect Killer in which you will be able to see all the places, people and things mentioned in the book.

The pages with still images are posted, and I'm about one-third of the way through the links that are keyed to specific pages in the book.

I have some videos -- some Google Earth movies and some video of Dan Gabriel and others -- I plan to post soon.

Because so much of Perfect Killer is true and/or based on history, I'm trying very hard to give you a visual experience to enhance the reading.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Why Is This Drug Program Important?

First of all, despite the military's denial, Col. Gabriel and others believe the program has been continued as part of the government's "black budget" programs.

Second, many of my sources believe that a drug like Xantaeus was secretly tested on some troops in the First Gulf War and is responsible for one of the forms of Gulf War Syndrome.

Third and most significantly, as the characters in Perfect Killer discuss, when a psychopharmacological weapon like Xantaeus is available to both sides in a battle, the greatly elevated bloodshed will make it a weapon of mass destruction.


As Col. Gabriel explains in his Afterword to Perfect Killer, right now (and throughout history) a battle is won or lost when one side surrenders or breaks rank and flees.

But with the military's Xantaeus-like program, both sides will fight until one side has been slaughtered and is unable to fight. Death and bloodshed will be greatly increased.

This latter is a significant issue that needs public discussion. The use of these drugs should probably be classified in the same category as chemical and biological weapons.

Of course, like chemical and biological weapons, these psychopharmacological weapons could fall into the hands of terrorists, making it far easier to produce vast numbers of suicide bombers, not just one or two at a time, but great human waves of deadly ordnance.

Military Documents Verify Drug Program On Which Perfect Killer Is Based

Although there is very, very little information available on the military's psychopharamacology program, I was able to interview a number of people (including Col. Rick Gabriel) and develop a surprisingly clear picture of things.

Yesterday, thanks to the generosity of NBC News Investigative Producer Robert Windrem, I received a stack of documents he obtained several years ago under the Freedom of Information Act.

I've used FOIA myself on a number of occasions (one such time helped me break the story of an illegal Nixon campaign slush fund called the "Townhouse Operation.") The problem is that using FOIA means having enough information so that you can make a specific request. My own attempts to find documents based on "nondepleting neurotrop" were not specific enough.

In addition, the current Bush Administration has tightened up FOIA information releases and has made it harder and harder to obtain public documents.

Rick Gabriel helped me along with the quest because he had been interviewed back in 1989 by NBC reporter Fred Francis for a "Spotlight" segment on what was then known as "the brave pill." Windrem produced that segment.

It was a fascinating segment on an important issue, but oddly enough, the story never caught on elsewhere. Because of the time limitations of television, many of the truly amazing facts regarding the "Pharmacological Optimization of Military Performance" could not be developed in the Francis/Windrem Brave Pill segment.

I was unaware of all the additional data, of course, and created Perfect Killer's drug, "Xantaeus," from what interviews I had done and data collected more than three years ago.

I have not yet thoroughly absorbed all of the documents, but I am astounded now by how much more of my "fiction" in Perfect Killer is true today than it was yesterday.

You can read those documents yourself. I will be creating .pdf versions soon.