A MANIFEST ABSURDITY!

Posted by Jim Fetzer , 2001/07/29, 12:43:13

Gary Mack and Josiah Thompson have alleged that ASSASSINATION SCIENCE (1998) and MURDER IN DEALEY PLAZA (2000) are not carried by The Sixth Floor Museum because they do not satisfy the demanding standards of scholarship required for being included there. (Tink, for example, recently asserted that these books were not accepted because of their "sloppy research".) If this were the truth, then we would expect that the books carried by The Sixth Floor Museum would satisfy the avowed criteria. However, their offerings include THE WARREN REPORT (1964) and CASE CLOSED (1993)! If ever two books represented "sloppy research", these are the ones.

In order to substantiate some of the evidence for this opinion, I am providing below: (1) a review of CASE CLOSED by an historian who specializes in assassination studies; (2) a summary of findings established by research published in ASSASSINATION SCIENCE; and, (3) a few sections of MURDER IN DEALEY PLAZA that discuss WARREN REPORT conclusions. It does not take a rocket scientist to see that the alleged grounds for excluding books at The Sixth Floor Museum are not the actual grounds, which reinforces the belief that this entity operates as if it were a propaganda medium for the federal government.

Think about it. The books they include--THE WARREN REPORT and CASE CLOSED--are among the least adequate and furthest removed from the truth of any ever published on this subject. The books they exclude--ASSASSINATION SCIENCE and MURDER IN DEALEY PLAZA--are among the most powerful in demonstrating the inadequacies of the books they include! It is no exaggeration to say that, were it not for the "sloppy research" of the books they defend, we would not be here today! The situation as Mack and Thompson present it is clearly a grotesque charade and a manifest absurdity.

(1) CASE CLOSED (1993) by Gerald Posner. This review by David R. Wrone appeared in the JOURNAL OF SOUTHERN HISTORY 6 (February 1995), pp. 186-188

Case Closed: Lee Harvey Oswald and the Assassination of JFK. By Gerald Posner. (New York: Random House, 1993. Pp. xvi, 607. $25.00, ISBN 0-679-41825-3.)

Gerald Posner argues that the Warren Commission properly investigated the assassination of JFK. He claims to have refuted the critics, purports to show what actually occurred, and asserts simple factual answers to explain complex problems that have plagued the subject for years. In the process he condemns all who do not agree with the official conclusions as theories driven by conjectures. At the same time his book is so theory driven, so rife with speculation, and so frequently unable to conform his text with the factual content in his sources that it stands as one of the stellar instances of irresponsible publishing on the subject.

Massive numbers of factual errors suffuse the book, which make it a veritable minefield. Random samples are the following: Pontchartrain is a lake not a river. The wounded James Tague stood twenty feet east, not under the triple underpass. There were three Philip Geracis, not one; he confuses the second and the third. A tiny fragment, not a bullet, entered Connally's thigh. The Army did the testing that he refers to the FBI. None, not three, commissioners heard at least half the hearings. The Warren Commission did not have any investigators. Captain Donovan is John, not Charles, and a lieutenant. The critics of the official findings are not leftists but include conservatives such as Cardinal Cushing, William Loeb, and former commissioner, Richard Russell. Posner often presents the opposite of what the evidence says. In the presentation of a corrupt picture of Oswald's background, for example, he states that, under the name of Osborne, Oswald picked up leaflets he distributed from the Jones Printing Company and that the "receptionist" identified him. She in fact said that Oswald did not pick up the leaflets as the source that Posner cites indicates.

No credible evidence connects Oswald to the murder. All the data that Posner presents to do so is either shorn of context, corrupted, the opposite of what the sources actually say, or nonsourced. For example, 100 percent of the witness testimony and physical evidence exclude Oswald from carrying the rifle to work that day disguised as curtain rods. Posner manipulates with words to concoct a case against Oswald as with Linnie Mae Randle, who swore the package, as Oswald allegedly carried it, was twenty-eight inches long, far too short to have carried a rifle. He grasped its end, and it hung from his swinging arm to almost touch the ground. Posner converts this to "tucked under his armpit, and the other end did not quite touch the ground"(p. 225). The rifle was heavily oiled, but the paper sack discovered on the sixth floor had not a trace of oil. Posner excludes this vital fact.

To refute criticism that the first of three shots (the magic bullet) inflicted seven nonfatal wounds on two bodies in impossible physical and time constraints, he invents a second magic bullet. He asserts that Oswald fired the first bullet near frame 160 of the Zapruder film, fifty frames earlier than officially held, and missed. The bullet hit a twig or a branch or a tree, as he varies it, then separated into its copper sheath and lead composite core. The core did a right angle to fly west more than 200 feet to hit a curbstone and wound Tague while the sheath decided to disappear. The curb in fact had been damaged. He omits that analysis of the curb showed the bullet came from the west, which means the bullet would have had to have taken another sui generis turn of 135 degrees to get back west with sufficient force to smash concrete, which he pretends was not marred.

He asserts proof of a core hit because FBI analysis revealed "traces of [sic per reviewer] lead with a trace of antimony" (p. 325) in the damage. What he omits destroys his theory. He does not explain that a bullet core has several other metallic elements in its composition, not two, rendering his conclusion false. He further neglects to inform the reader that by May 1964 the damage had been covertly patched with a concrete paste and that in August, not July, 1964, the FBI tested the scrapings of the paste, not the damage, which gave the two metal results.

He says the second shot transited JFK's neck and caused the nonfatal wounds striking Connally at Zapruder film frame 224 where Connally is seen turned to his right, allegedly lining his body up with JFK's neck, thus sustaining the single bullet explanation. He finds proof that a bullet hit then in Connally's lapel that was flapping in that one frame as it passed through. But he does not conform to fact. Wind gusting to twenty miles per hour that day ruffled clothing. And, there is no bullet hole in the lapel but in the jacket body beneath the right nipple area.

Posner crowns his theory with the certainty of science by using one side of the computer-enhanced studies by Failure Analysis Associates of Menlo Park that his text implies he commissioned. The firm, however, lambastes his use as a distortion of the technology that it had developed for the American Bar Association's mock trial of Oswald where both sides used it. Posner fails. I believe that irrefutable evidence shows conspirators, none of them Oswald, killed JFK. A mentally ill Jack Ruby, alone and unaided, shot Oswald. The federal inquiry knowingly collapsed and theorized a political solution. Its corruption spawned theorists who tout solutions rather than define the facts that are locked in the massively muddied evidentiary base and released only by hard work.

David R. Wrone
University of Wisconsin
Stevens Point

(2) ASSASSINATION SCIENCE (1998), edited by James H. Fetzer (with contributions by Charles Crenshaw, Bradley Kizzia, David W. Mantik, Robert B. Livington, Jack White, Mike Pincher and Roy Schaeffer, Ron Hepler, Chuck Marler, Ronald W. White, and James H. Fetzer). The following is a partial summary of findings established here.

ASSASSINATION SCIENCE reports and explains the most important scientific findings in the history of the study of the assassination of John Fitzgerald Kennedy, which include: * the discovery that some autopsy X-rays have been fabricated to conceal a massive blow-out to the back of the head caused by a shot from in front; * the discovery that other autopsy X-rays have been altered by the imposition of a 6.5 mm metal object that was not present on the original X-rays; * the discovery that diagrams and photographs that are supposed to be of the brain of JFK must be of the brain of someone other than John Kennedy; * the discovery that the President alone was hit by at least four shots: one to his throat (fired from in front), one to his back (fired from behind) and two to his head (fired from behind and from in front); * the discovery that the official "magic bullet " theory cannot possibly be true; * the discovery that an absolute minimum of at least six shots were fired in Dealey Plaza during the assassination; * the discovery that the Zapruder film of the assassination, which has been viewed as the nearest thing to "absolute truth" by some, has been extensively edited using highly sophisticated techniques; * the discovery that Lee Harvey Oswald appears to have been framed using manufactured evidence, including the back-yard photograph; * the discovery that the Warren Commission inquiry was a political charade featuring -a phoney bullet -a phoney limo -phoney wounds.

(3) MURDER IN DEALEY PLAZA (2000), edited by James H. Fetzer (with contributions from Ira David Wood III, Vincent Palamara, Douglas Weldon, Gary Aguilar, David W. Mantik, Douglas P. Horne, Jack White, Bertrand Russell, and James H. Fetzer). The following sections (absent their graphics) are drawn from pp. 2-6.

THE WARREN REPORT

John F. Kennedy, the 35th President of the United States, was murdered during a motorcade as it passed through Dealey Plaza in Dallas on 22 November 1963. The official government account of the crime, known as The Warren Report after its Chair, Chief Justice of the United States, Earl Warren--but technically entitled, The Report of the President's Commission on the Assassination of President John F. Kennedy (1964) -- held that JFK was killed by a lone, demented assassin named Lee Harvey Oswald, who fired three shots with a high-velocity rifle from a sixth floor window of the nearby Texas School Book Depository, scoring two hits and one miss, which struck a distant concrete curb, ricocheted and slightly injured by-stander James Tague. (A photograph of the injury may be found in Robert Groden, The Killing of a President 1993, p. 41.)

The presumptive shots that hit, however, wreaked considerable damage. The first is alleged to have entered the President's back at the base of his neck, traversed his neck without impacting any bony structure, exited his throat at the level of his tie, entered the back of Texas Governor John Connally (riding in a jump seat in front of him), shattering a rib, exiting his chest, impacting his right wrist, and deflecting into his left thigh. The bullet supposed to have performed these remarkable feats, moreover, is alleged to have been recovered virtually undamaged from a stretcher at Parkland Hospital, where President Kennedy and Governor Connally were rushed for treatment, and has come to be known as "the magic bullet." The other struck JFK in the back of his head and killed him.

THE HSCA

Indeed, these findings were reaffirmed and refined by the House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA) during its re-investigation of 1977-78 in its report of 1979, with the exception that--on the basis of disputed acoustical evidence, which it never adequately explored---it concluded that a fourth shot had been fired from "the grassy knoll," which made it probable that the President, after all, had been assassinated by a conspiracy, possibly one of small scale, a matter that the HSCA did not pursue. But, in relation to the major findings of the Warren Commission, the HSCA reaffirmed them. For the official government account of the death of JFK to be true, therefore, at least the following three conjectures--"hypotheses," let us call them, to avoid begging the question by taking for granted what needs to be established on independent grounds--have to be true:

(H1) JFK was hit at the base of the back of his neck by a bullet that traversed his neck without hitting any bony structures and exited his throat at the level of his tie;

(H2) JFK was hit in the back of his head by a bullet fired from the sixth floor of the Texas School Book Depository, as its diagrams display, causing his death; and,

(H3) these bullets were fired by a sole assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald, using a high-powered rifle, which was identified as a 6.5 mm Italian Mannlicher Carcano.

As a point of deductive logic, if any of these hypotheses is false, then any account that entails them cannot be true. Yet it is surprisingly easy to show that all three are false.

Smoking Gun #1: (HI) is an anatomical impossibility, because the bullet would have had to impact bony structures. Consider, for example, hypothesis (Hi). David W. Mantik, M.D., Ph.D., who holds a Ph.D. in physics and is also board-certified in radiation oncology, has studied X-rays of the President's chest. He has used the cross-section of a body whose upper chest and neck dimensions were the same as those of JFK and performed a simple experiment. Taking the specific locations specified by the USCA for the point of entry at the base of the back of the neck and the point of exit at the throat, he has drawn a straight line to represent the trajectory that any bullet would have to have taken from that point of entry to that point of exit. Any such trajectory would intersect cervical vertebrae.

A CAT scan demonstrating Mantik's experiment has been published in a splendid study of some of the most basic evidence in this case by Stewart Galanor, Cover-Up (1998). Here is a visual representation of such a bullet's trajectory:

[MISSING GRAPHIC]

It would have been anatomically impossible for a bullet to have taken the trajectory specified by the official account. Hypothesis (H1) is not just false but cannot possibly be true. (Mantik's study may be found in Assassination Science 1998, pp. 157-58.)

Smoking Gun #2: The head shot trajectory is inconsistent with the position of his head at the time of the shot, falsifying (H2). Consider (H2), the hypothesis that a bullet fired from the sixth floor of the Texas School Book Depository entered the back of his head and killed him. The building in question was horizontally located to the President's rear, while the sixth floor of that building was vertically considerably above the President's head. Therefore, any such bullet must have entered the President's head from above and behind. That much is indisputable. No photographs of the President's injuries were published at the time, but The Warren Report (1964) did provide drawings (copies of which may be found in Assassination Science (1998), p. 438). The drawings of the head wound therefore appear to show a trajectory from above and behind, as the official account requires.

Stewart Galanor, Cover-Up (1998), however, has juxtaposed the official drawing with frame 312 of the Zapruder film, which the Warren Commission itself regarded as the moment before the fatal head shot incident to frame 313, with the following result:

[MISSING GRAPHIC]

When the President's head is properly positioned, the Commission's own drawing displays an upward rather than a downward trajectory. If the official drawing of the injury to the head is correct, then the conjecture that the President was hit from above and behind cannot be true; and if the President was hit from above and behind, the official drawing of the injury must be false. Hypothesis (H2) cannot possibly be true.

Smoking Gun #3: The weapon, which was not even a rifle, could not have fired the bullets that killed the president, falsifying (H3). Consider (H3), finally, which maintains that the bullets that hit their target were fired by Lee Harvey Oswald using a high-powered rifle, which The Warren Report (1964) also identified as a 6.5 mm Mannlicher-Carcano. As other authors, including Harold Weisberg, Whitewash (1965), Peter Model and Robert Groden, JFK: The Case for Conspiracy (1976), and Robert Groden and Harrison E. Livingstone, High Treason (1989) have also observed, the Mannlicher-Carcano that Oswald is supposed to have used is a 6.5 mm weapon, but it is not high velocity. Its muzzle velocity of approximately 2,000 fps means that it qualifies as a medium-to-low velocity weapon.

[Editor's note: Indeed, strictly speaking, the Mannlicher-Carcano is not a rifle but a carbine.]

[MISSING GRAPHIC]

The death certificates, The Warren Report, articles in JAMA, and other sources state that the President was killed by wounds inflicted by high-velocity missiles. (Some are reprinted in Assassination Science (1998).) The Mannlicher-Carcano is the only weapon that Oswald is alleged to have used to kill the President, but the Mannlicher-Carcano is not a high-velocity weapon; consequently, Lee Oswald could not have fired the bullets that killed the President. Thus, hypothesis (H3) cannot be true. This discovery is especially important, because the extensive damage sustained by JFK's skull and brain could not possibly have been inflicted by a weapon of this kind. The major trauma the President endured had to have been inflicted by one or more high-velocity weapons.

The hypotheses under consideration, (H1), (H2), and (H3), therefore, are not merely false but are provably false. Moreover, these hypotheses are by no means peripheral to the official account but the core of its conclusions. If (H1), (H2), and (H3) are false, then The Warren Report (1964) cannot be salvaged, even in spite of the best efforts of the Gerald Posners of the world. [Editor's note: Some problems encountered by his popular attempt to revive it have been dissected in Assassination Science (1998), pp. 145-152.] Among the central findings of The Warren Report (1964), therefore, the only one that appears to be true is the least important, namely: that bystander James Tague was hit by a bullet fragment that ricocheted from a distant curb and caused him minor injury.

Modified by Jim Fetzer at Sun, Jul 29, 2001, 14:26:48

 

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