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Gene Kelly

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Posts posted by Gene Kelly

  1. Thanks for the response Jim.  Not sure why any objective person - who does their due diligence - would continue to defame Garrison, or defend Thornley.  I suppose that I'm preaching at the saved here, but strong opinions/emotions still prevail. I can understand putting some stock/faith in Thornley's persona (and skepticism about Jim Garrison)  in the mid-to-late 60's ... but not today, after all the released AARB records.  It seems that informed readers are correct in thinking that Garrison should've aimed his prosecution at Thornley instead of Shaw (and for sound reason).  But I remain curious ... what would you have retitled Destiny, if you had it to do over?

     

     

  2. Jim

    I just finished reading your two-part series on Kerry Thornley.  Its wonderfully laid out, and convincing.  Its difficult to see how anyone would portray this character as an innocent libertarian.  Thornley's life is  full of numerous "remarkable coincidences" (as Garrison once stated) which crop up in his purported association with Oswald.  I agree with your conclusion that - along with the Paines - Thornley's testimony and so-called 'books' were intended as an incriminating character assassination of Oswald (and clearly disinformation). His inexplicable move to New Orleans in February 1961, and his hasty cross-country departure to Arlington (for the Warren Commission) are quite telling.  As is his strange (and mischaracterized) interaction with Jim Garrison's investigation ... and his side-stepping of the HSCA.  Thornley is a central character in the entire plot/charade, and well-protected one at that. 

    None of what you write is simply conjecture ... its all backed up by sourced interviews and released AARB documentation about New Orleans.  Thornley was always an enigma to me, and I avoided trying to understand his true role and story ... it just seemed like a diversion or distraction to the overall plot.  In retrospect, many have tried to dismiss him as an innocent right-wing/religious eccentric.  But you have connected the dots in a convincing manner. 

    I've read the 1st edition of Destiny and plan to get the second edition soon. I am curious as to what that alternate title you mention would have been.  Also, while avoiding the controversy of challenging Best Evidence, your two-part series has raised other questions. Without being defamatory, do you think that David Lifton was simply mislead (and/or used) by Thornley, or does it go deeper than that?

    Gene

  3. Elmer Moore's comments (and confession) to University of Washington graduate student James Gochenaur in May of 1970 have always given me pause.  In this complex assassination story - with so many twists/turns, uncertainties and misdirection - his simple statement that "JFK was a Commie sympathizer" sums the whole thing up.  It reflects motive, validates that the autopsy and wounds were misrepresented, HSCA and AARB knew who/where the true plotters were, FBI and SS complicity, and even Oswald's limited role. That conversation with Moore is a Rosetta Stone for the entire affair. 

  4. I don't recognize too many names in this list of celebrity supporters that I would hold on a pedestal or personally admire ... no one here to brag about (imho):

    Roseanne Barr, Gary Busey, Mike Tyson, Kid Rock, Dennis Rodman, Dana White, Tia Tequila, Chumlee from Pawn Stars, Willie Robertson, Jerry Falwell Jr., Charlie Sheen, Tom Brady, Stephen Baldwin, Kirstie Alley, Sarah Palin. 

    Jack Nicholas surprises and disappoints me, but Golf Week published an article that explains Nicklaus being a vocal Republican and no wallflower when it comes to election campaigns.

  5. Micah

    As a physicist, I couldn't resist addressing the topic of why the sky appears "blue":

    Before white light reaches the Earth’s surface, the light waves collide with the nitrogen and oxygen atoms in the atmosphere. The light scatters or is re-emitted at different frequencies (or colors). Higher frequencies or smaller wavelengths (blue and purple) are more intensely scattered and thus bounce in all directions more than lower frequencies (red or orange). The scattering of high frequencies alone would cause the sky to appear blue and purple, but our eyes work better (because our retinal cones are more receptive) at frequencies near the middle of the spectrum. Since the color blue is closer to the middle of the light spectrum than purple is, the sky we see appears blue.

    The secret to a blue sky is the size of air molecules... they are the perfect size for scattering blue light out of the incoming sunlight. Not all wavelengths in the visible light spectrum scatter equally. Shorter, more energetic wavelengths - toward the violet end of the spectrum - scatter better than those toward the longer, less energetic, red end. This tendency is due in part to their higher energy, and in part to the geometry of the particles that they interact with in the atmosphere.  In 1871, Lord Rayleigh derived a formula describing a subset of these interactions, in which atmospheric particles are much smaller than the wavelengths of the radiation striking them. The Rayleigh scattering model shows that, in such systems, the intensity of scattered light varies inversely with the fourth power of its wavelength. In other words, shorter wavelengths - like blue and violet - scatter almost an order of magnitude more than long ones when interacting with particles such as oxygen and nitrogen molecules which are relatively small (i.e. one-tenth the size of the wavelength).

    I do like your challenge about how we confirm source accuracy.  That's a staple of the business that I'm in, and we have a fairly rigorous process used for fact-checking.  In the nuclear industry, when we provide information to our regulator, we do so under oath and affirmation that its complete and accurate.  So, we go to great pains to validate that information before we docket it.  We do this using an expert panel of knowledgeable individuals, to whom we present the actual source of the information to ensure that we know where it comes from.  Typically, that "source document" has been rigorously prepared, independently reviewed, and approved by a manager.  We would rarely use and submit information that is hearsay, second-hand, or questionably obtained. 

    Best

    Gene Kelly

  6. Sorry to be late to this thread, but I just finished O'Neill's "Chaos" book.  Its  well done, a good read, and makes a compelling case for CIA/Jolyon West involvement in the Tate/LaBianca murders (imho) even without the elusive smoking gun. O'Neill certainly did his homework, and tried to leave no stones unturned over a 20-year effort. He talked to an impressive array of witnesses and sources. 

    I'm more than ever convinced that Dr. West was an evil sort, and the TLB murders (and many others not officially connected) were - as one colleague of West's described it - an MK/Ultra experiment that worked. At a minimum, Bugliosi is portrayed as unethical (and psychotic) in his own right ... Jim D. is right that he should've been disbarred for his conduct of that trial, and his shameless pursuit of the exclusive book rights. As Tom explains, he appears to have been:

    " ... obligated to certain federal agencies, or had been for his entire career, to write a book like Reclaiming History, and to present a false narrative like he did in Helter Skelter.”

    The coincidence of Manson's dedicated parole officer (Roger Smith), the Haight Free Clinic, and West's hippie crash pad in the Haight are way too obvious to ignore.  Someone was subverting and spreading a very negative picture of the counterculture at the time.  A bigger picture emerges of a government (i.e. CIA/FBI) intent on discrediting the peace movement, Hippies, and the Black Panthers (to name a few).  Then there's the corrupt LAPD and the clueless LASO people. The Reeve Whitson character is intriguing, and I just don't know what to  make of Sharon Tate's father.  I also suspect John Lennon's murder is simply another example of a CHAOS/COINTELPRO operation, to discredit the Beatles and demean opposition to the Vietnam War (as far fetched as it sounds).   The Hippie is now seen as a dirty/dangerous character (not the peace/love profile originally intended).   And LSD became the weapon turned against this generation. 

    The Manson story and the true picture of the TLB murders is clearly not what we've been led to believe by the MSM. As Mae Brussel emphasized, these fascist people were all agent provocateurs.  A very scary picture of our government ... but as college student during that period (1967-1973), it fits with the despicable character of Ricard Nixon.  

  7. Jim

    I too enjoy your work immensely, particularly the added perspective you provide on American history in the 60's and 70's.  As a scientist/engineer, I paid little attention to those topics during the course of my education.  I grew up during those times, yet know so little about the unvarnished truth.  Unfortunately, that truth is not always found in the history books that our schools and teachers schools are constrained by. One of the reasons that I find the JFK assassination so interesting is that it has provided me with a more sophisticated view of (and a renewed interest in) modern American history.  I've always thought that a deeper understanding of the political and social issues that form the backdrop for Kennedy's presidency (i.e. the Cold War, Cuba, Vietnam, civil rights, the Middle East and oil) also provide valuable clues for what happened to him.  Your writings about his foreign policy - particularly his stance towards Vietnam, his positions on Third World countries (and resources) in the Congo, Indonesia, Dominican; his relations with foreign powers in Italy, France, Egypt and Israel; his attempts at rapprochement with the Soviet Union - stimulate a more meaningful discussion of his assassination.  All of his policies/positions were so blatantly at odds with - literally worlds apart from - the course being plotted by the likes of Dean Acheson and the Dulles brothers.  The answer to "why" is certainly to be found in the true account and stories behind that history. 

    Gene

  8. Rob, I'm not a "Prouty supporter".  I know precious little about him. He had a respectful military career, and was a decorated pilot. He knew many of the principals of the JFK and Vietnam stories. He wrote some books (none of which I've read), and he was suspicious of the CIA (as anyone who seriously researches this case should be).  I don't put him on a pedestal or rely upon a movie to develop my opinions about the assassination. If you read my earlier post, I stated that he has always seemed too good to be true and so I view his "allegations" with some measure of skepticism.  Perhaps he embellished things a bit (who hasn't, at some point in their life).  It therefore seems rather harsh to label him as a fraud and a xxxx ...  but I would agree that the AARB interview was a bit disappointing. 

  9. The AARB was trying to close doors/windows (not open up new ones).  My experience with whistleblowers (as Prouty was treated) is that they are in a lose-lose proposition.  Even when they are right (and validated), the end result of their testimony is painful and unproductive. They become pariahs and unfulfilled.  I suspect that Prouty was trying to get in and out of the interview with as little damage and pain as possible. No one was going to take on those powers that are implicated ... many of whom were already dead, with the key events almost 20years in the rear view mirror. The AARB wanted to close out his allegations as unsubstantiated, with no basis in fact, which is what they did. The fact is, they missed an opportunity to shine a light on the true perpetrators. How would one ever expect the plotters to leave a prosecutable record?  His interview was in September 1996 (Prouty passed away five years later).  Vietnam was over 20 years earlier, and the assassination was past its 30-year anniversary.  His AARB interview seems to be perfunctory (imho).  So, I wouldn't judge him too harshly. 

  10. Doug Valentine raises suspicions about Ellsberg. One wonders about the true nature of the Pentagon Papers, the plumbers break-in of Ellsberg's psychiatrist's office, Hunt's role and of course Watergate.  The implication (by Hougan) is to misdirect the attention/spotlight on the Pentagon for Vietnam, and away from the CIA's PHOENIX atrocities and drug capers. Then there's the close association of Lansdale with Ellsberg and Lucien Conein (plus Walt Rostow, Allen Dulles and Henry Cabot Lodge). Lansdale testified (and lied) before the Rockefeller Commission, giving up William Harvey.  Lansdale's public persona (painted in books) is that of a pacifist ... on face reflecting JFK's intent to keep forces out of Vietnam and against a military strategy.  He sidles up close/friendly to Diem, and yet he and Cabot Lodge conspire to have Diem assassinated ... a fate that JFK soon experiences.  Lansdale's later involvement in Vietnam "pacification" efforts (i.e. Project Phoenix) and his sponsorship by the Georgetown Set (or Dulles Coven) are difficult to ignore.   He was a wolf in sheep's clothing. Here are some good references on Lansdale:

    • Baier, A. (1989) “Edward Lansdale: The Image of the US in Vietnam” 
    • Bernstein, M. (2010) “Ed Lansdale’s Black Warfare in 1950s Vietnam”
    • Bonn, T. (April 2010) “General Edward Lansdale and the Murder of John Kennedy”. The American Chronicle
    • Nashel, J. (2005) “Edward Lansdale's Cold War”. Univ. of Mass.
    • Newman, J. (1992) “JFK and Vietnam” 
    • Seagrave, S. (November 2008) “Edward Lansdale” Education Forum Thread 

    Back to this thread and Fletcher Prouty ... perhaps the AARB interview was to discredit him and minimize his allegations.  

    Gene

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  11. I tried to find the source of Lansdale's relationship with Daniel Ellsberg. One such article is found in Counterpunch on March 8, 2003 entitled “Will the Real Daniel Ellsberg Please Stand Up!” written by Douglas Valentine, who shares that:

    In 1965, Ellsberg was assigned as a Pentagon observer to the CIA’s Revolutionary Development (RD) Program in South Vietnam. Here Ellsberg came under the influence of his mentor, CIA officer cum Air Force General Edward Lansdale. The mass murderer Graham Greene used as the model for Alden Pyle in “The Quiet American,” Lansdale was the architect of the CIA’s anti-terror strategy for winning the Vietnam War. When not engaged in typical RD Program “Civil Affairs” activities, such as helping the local Vietnamese build perimeter defenses around their villages, Ellsberg and his fellow RD advisors, under the tutelage of Lansdale, dressed in black pajamas and reportedly slipped into enemy areas at midnight to “snatch and snuff” the local Viet Cong cadre, sometimes making it appear as if the VC themselves had done the dirty deed, in what Lansdale euphemistically called “black propaganda” activities.

    Ellsberg’s close friend, CIA officer Lucien Conein, was negotiating a “truce” with the Corsican gangsters who supplied South Vietnam’s top military officers and government officials with that most lucrative of black market commodities, heroin.

    The House of Representatives launched deeper probes into CIA drug smuggling and the CIA’s Phoenix Program in early 1971, and, naturally, the CIA at this critical time took extensive countermeasures in a concerted effort to conceal these facts. What is relevant to the discrepancy is the that in June 1971, Daniel Ellsberg leaked the aptly named Pentagon Papers, shifting blame for the increasingly unpopular Vietnam War from the CIA to the military, while distracting public attention from the investigations of the CIA’s Phoenix Program and the CIA’s involvement in drug smuggling.

    Curiously, one can find articles published in the Liberty Conservative that criticize Stone's JFK movie, and attempt to paint Lansdale in a more conservative light (and JFK as the hawk and responsible for Diem's death).  Reads and smells like spin control - wash, rinse, repeat - to me. One such article appeared in March 2017 by writer Ron Capshaw:

    But Lansdale was once again a lone moderate voice against the more hawkish Kennedy administration, this time around regarding JFK authorizing a coup against Diem, who the President feared was on the verge of normalizing relations with the North. He practically begged Kennedy official Robert McNamara not to support the coup, stating, “There’s a constitution in place… Please don’t destroy that when you’re trying to change the government.” Nevertheless, the coup went forward with the blessing of the United States, resulting, to the horror of Kennedy, the assassination of Diem by his own military officers. With the removal of Diem, who despite repressive policies did provide stability for the South, the U.S. was now tied to the health of the succeeding regimes, and the South never again had a stable government.

  12. This thread contains one of the best groups of JFK plot "thinkers" that exist (imho) so we should all be peaceful and respectful.  I'm reminded of Mick Jagger's question posed at Altamont Raceway in December 1969 (i.e. "why are we fighting?").  Maybe that's too heavy of an analogy, but it came to mind. 

    On a lighter note, I always enjoy Steve's input ... and am wary whenever "Colonels" are introduced.  I've never given Fletcher Prouty much thought, but his access and affiliations are uniquely interesting.  So is that AARB interview, as well as the later Garrison letter.  But not everyone is convinced of Prouty allegations.

    Nonetheless, I would truly suspect Edward Lansdale, as his curriculum vitae are quite clear, and his affiliations/references are infamous.  I suspect he was charming JFK and misleading him with regards to Vietnam.  Playing a "double game" as Sterling Seagrove stated in a 2008 EF thread.  Lansdale's rejection for a senior position in Saigon by other members of JFK's administration was telling. I think it was Dean Rusk who mistrusted Lansdale, and influenced his unsuccessful ambassador quest. My instincts still don't allow me to paint him as a friend or ally of JFK. And his specialty (in PsyOps) was the elaborate drama and scripted misdirection we see occur in Dealey Plaza.  Being "retired" in November 1963 is a tantalizing coincidence.  I'm befuddled by the Tramps photos (in spite of DJ's work), and so don't know quite what to make of it.  There are many comments about Lansdale; one that is interesting is attributed to Daniel Ellsberg

    One of those who served under him in this job was Daniel Ellsberg. The two men remained friends until the death of Lansdale. Ellsberg liked Lansdale because of his commitment to democracy. Ellsberg also agreed with Lansdale that the pacification program should be run by the Vietnamese. He argued that unless it was a Vietnam project it would never work. Lansdale knew that there was a deep xenophobia among Vietnamese.

  13. Jim

    I read your excellent critique of the Ken Burns PBS film ... its one of the best summaries of Vietnam that I've  seen.  Such a complex story, so rife with politics and deception, misleading information, and of course tragedy.   In returning to the thread's topic, I struggle with how to judge Edward Lansdale.  Prouty's suspicions appear well-founded.  Lansdale was a creature of the Cold War and its not too difficult to connect him with the Dulles brothers, Nixon and all manner of covert operations.  Lansdale was characterized as a "chameleon" by Prouty in his March 1990 letter to Jim Garrison:

    I knew Ed well enough and long enough to know that he was a classic chameleon. He would tell the truth sparingly and he would fabricate a lot.

    Its difficult to belive anything published or written about Lansdale, such as Currey's book. He is associated with many of JFK's enemies including Joseph Alsop, Henry Cabot Lodge, Lucien Conein, William Harvey, et al.  His background was public relations and advertising; his specialty was psychological warfare (shades of David Phillips). His wartime OSS experience was followed by the machinations in the PhilippinesInterestingly, Maxwell Taylor arranged for Lansdale to have “early retirement”, but the two men apparently disagreed about what should be done in Vietnam. Dulles intervened to get him promoted.  He didn't get the Ambassadors appointment,Prouty seemed to have a suspect view of Lansdale, and Lansdale's view of Prouty wasn't  flattering either: 

    "He was a good pilot of prop-driven aircraft, but had such a heavy dose of paranoia about CIA when he was on my staff that I kicked him back to the Air Force. He was one of those who thought I was secretly running the Agency from the Pentagon, despite all the proof otherwise."  

    So, what's you're assessment of Edward Lansdale

    Gene

     

     

  14. Joe

    I don't know too much about Fletcher Prouty, and never thought too deeply about his opinions until reading this AARB transcript.  For me personally, he has always seemed too good to be true.  He authored a number of dramatic books (none of which I've read) which apparently experienced difficulty getting published.  That he raised suspicions at the time is to his credit, and could be viewed as courageous.  I would note however that he is an "insider" as far as intelligence operations and military liaison are concerned ... so (as many in the JFK community), I try to keep an open mind, but harbor some skepticism.  Trust but verify, as we used to say in my former profession (i.e. nuclear plant inspection).  I do not belive the AARB staff were trying to discredit him in any way, as they were attempting to identify verifiable sources and documents.  But they came away with very little, other than speculation and opinion:   

    Under scrutiny and close questioning, Prouty basically concedes that he has no personal knowledge of anything sinister, and that the basis of his statements are his own personal beliefs only. Prouty also admits that he has never read or even seen the Warren Commission Report.  His statements, coming from someone who was verifiably in a position to know, sound plausible, and would appear to carry the credibility of an insider’s knowledge. Under more careful analysis, it becomes clear that ... many of Prouty’s allegations are not based on interpretations of actual events, but merely his feelings or general beliefs. Given the opportunity to document these allegations or in some other fashion uncover the truth, however, Prouty declined to do so, and often retreated from or contradicted his published claims.

    He did have a 23-year military career, much of it in the Pentagon. In 1955 he was appointed a "Focal Point" officer between the CIA and the Air Force for Clandestine Operations. He prepared briefings for the Secretary of Defense and the Joint Chiefs of Staff.  His website states that "at times he would be called to meet with Allen Dulles and John Foster Dulles at their home on highly classified business".   Those are some strange bedfellows.  

    Gene

  15. This is an interesting thread.  I've never given much close attention to Colonel Prouty (although its always the "colonels", as Steve Thomas cautions us).  He is of course interesting, and authored some interesting books.  He was in a unique position to see the interconnections of the military and the intelligence community ... a valuable perspective for those who want to understand what happened in Dealey Plaza.  I would try not to judge Prouty's allegations - which is what AARB was trying to substantiate in their September 1996 interview - with how he is portrayed in the movie JFK.   

    The ARRB Interview summary (prepared by Christopher Barger) stated that "in his various writings, Prouty advanced several claims or theories about the assassination".  While the AARB's basic responsibility was to identify pertinent records (i.e. evidence), is wasn't just about documents.  In my reading of the interview summary, they were attempting to substantiate Prouty's allegations.   I have some experience in that regard, which I wont go into here, but that word caught my eye.  Prouty had made statements, captured in a variety of sources (not just the Stone movie) and the AARB was tasked with running these down to substantiate the claims.  The stated purposes of the ARRB interview were:

    1. Determine precisely what firsthand knowledge Prouty has regarding the assassination;
    2. Determine the extent to which his various allegations or statements regarding the assassination are based on his own personal knowledge or experience; and, should he disavow factual knowledge from his own experience, to determine whether he is aware of other factual data that could tend to prove or disprove his allegations;
    3. To ascertain whether Prouty has in his possession any original documents or other records that might be valuable to the JFK Assassination Records Collection at the National Archives, and to seek Prouty’s advice on where the ARRB might look for additional records relating to the assassination;
    4. To seek Prouty’s advice on other individuals whom the ARRB might contact in order to confirm or deny his statements and theories  

    I don't think this 1996 interview destroys Fletcher Prouty's integrity or importance, nor should we ignore what he has written and talked about.  But it does weaken his credibility. 

    Gene

     

  16. This is a great thread, and sheds light on a critical myth that's been upheld for 50+ years ... that JFK cancelled the air strikes, and caused the invasion to fail.   Tragically, one could argue that this myth was used against JFK, and possibly got him killed (amongst other reasons).   Bissell should be held accountable in a historical context, and what he did was unforgivable and despicable:

    In point of fact both Esterline and Hawkins ultimately related that Bissell had told them the D Day air strikes were cancelled by JFK but that after seeing all the information they had to conclude that to be a lie, as with many other things Bissell had told them.

     

  17. Vince's only son, Ernest Anthony Salandria (Ernie), 60, of Cape May Court House, NJ, passed away on April 12, 2020. He was born and raised in Philadelphia, and graduated from Central High School (his dad's alma mater) in 1977.  Ernie's obit mentions that his family’s rich Italian heritage lead him to open Ernesto’s 1521 Café on Spruce St, a popular center city restaurant. He worked side-by-side with his extended family at the café, where the family’s recipes became legendary fare to his grateful patrons.  In later years, he traveled to Tuscany every August, accompanied by family and friends, fostering an appreciation of Tuscan cuisine as well as inspiring his collection of Barolo wines.  There has not been much published about Vince's death this past week in Philadelphia. Only that - Sunday a week ago - he collapsed and died of a heart attack while walking his dog.  

  18. Jim

    Agreed and understood.  I was just addressing John Butler's question.  They (the CBS weapons experts) did not have access to the actual (alleged) rifle which was otherwise in poor shape.  The also had larger targets, and the benefit of practice time. The published average for all of the experts was about 1.2 hits out of 3 (on the enlarged target).  It also sounds like the jammed bolt action was a ruse for the added failures of the marksmen. While I'm not condoning the CBS News executive behavior, it isn't surprising to me in retrospect. This was 1967, only a little more than two years since issuance of the Warren Report, and 8 years before the Church Committee revelations and subsequent HSCA investigations.  Its nonetheless disappointing that there were individuals who wanted to conduct accurate representations, but were overruled.  But that's also no surprise, given the affiliations of Richard Salant, Gordon Manning, and John McCloy's influence.   

    However, the larger idea of trying to somehow recreate the alleged TSBD shots is a fool's errand.  We are chasing our tails - and debating irrelevant disinformation (as Vincent Salandria warned against) - by attempting to analyze timing and the available "evidence".  I am convinced - as Craig Roberts and others have pointed out - that this was an expert ambush from several strategic locations. Multiple shooting teams, special weapons and ammunition, coordinated for effect and deception.  Real snipers would want good egress for escape (i.e. not the TSBD). The Book Depository is not an optimal location for any of these considerations, and any shooters staged there were merely for show and deception. This Carcano weapon is an odd choice for the operation ... I am convinced that no real sniper would choose it for this momentous task. I am reminded of the insight offered by other researchers (e.g. William Orchard) that it was somehow chosen as a joke or a form of disrespect for the investigators who had to later deal with it.       

    Gene

  19. John

    In the 1967 CBS News trial demonstrations, of the 12 first attempts, only one shooter was able to make two hits in less than 5.6 seconds. Of the 43 total attempts, the 12 expert shooters were able to replicate the Warren Commission conclusion (two hits in less than 5.6 seconds) only four times.  The marksmen were also allowed to practice prior to the tests. The more compelling observation was the number of instances where the shooter could not get any result ... once the clip was loaded, the bolt action jammed in a number of attempts. This would require the shooter to realign the target and fire again (which is not as easy as it sounds).  One expert, an ex-paratrooper named Douglas Bazemore  was unable to fire any shots (in four attempts) because of the stiff bolt action, and he gave up.

    Gene

  20. Regarding luck versus skill, it seems the actual shooters were very good, as the objective was a head shot, and none of the incoming ever hit Jackie.  The simultaneity of shots was also expert, as was use of the of "canyon shoot" technique.  Distraction and diversion - augmented by the subsequent Tippit killing - allowed for a clean get-away.  Blowing someone's head off while sitting next to his wife, at high noon, was not simply a murder ...  

  21. Paul/Ron

    Its interesting that this thread was first started almost ten years ago ... and recently revisited by Lawrence.  The question as to why a Carcano has always intrigued me.  My reading convinces me that there's some hidden (ironic) symbolism to its selection as the incriminating weapon.  Many excellent researchers have poked holes in its provenance, most notably Gil Jesus, David Josephs,  Lisa Pease and John Armstrong to name a few more recently ... and historically George Evica, Craig Roberts, Graf and Bartholomew,  John Craig, Michael Griffith,  Bill MacDowall, William Orchard, et al.  These all point to serious inconsistencies exist about the rifle's ownership, origin, purchase, and efficacy as a weapon.  No serious assassin would chose that weapon or take three shots from that location, if they wanted to succeed and escape. 

    But what nags at me is that the Italian heritage (and SIFAR secrecy) also points towards William Harvey,  who was  at the time exiled to an Italian posting.  I believe Orchard's thesis that the selection of this poor weapon (in questionable firing condition) was intentionally meant as an insult or "message" to the FBI, to make the crime scene "messy" and uncomfortable for them.  Its no secret that Harvey didn't care for his former agency (or Hoover) and it appears the FBI scrambled in the aftermath to cover up its true origin ... and manufacture a lot of flimsy evidence aimed at Oswald.  In other words, Harvey and Co. were blackmailing the FBI.  It would seem (as a sub-plot) that the CIA and FBI were at war. 

    There's also a fascist theme to this particular rifle ... shades of Gladio, Permindex and right-wing blowback. Someone allegedly ordered the rifle right around the same time that Senator Christopher Dodd's subcommittee began hearings in January 1963. And what always intrigues me is that an investigator looking into interstate firearms sales at this time was Manuel Pena, the infamous LAPD lieutenant who later played a role in Robert Kennedy's assassination. It was Pena who traced Oswald's telescopic sight to a California gun shop. After the assassination, Dodd promoted a story to the Senate Internal Security Subcommittee that Oswald bad been trained at a KGB assassination school in Minsk. The American Security Council - an organization advocating removal of Castro from Cuba and escalation of the war in Vietnam - is at the center of all this intrigue.  I would refer to the excellent 1996 article by Lisa Pease entitled "Thomas J. Dodd & Son: Corruption of Blood?" originally published in Probe Magazine. 

    Gene

     

  22. Thanks Ron, appreciate the shout-out.  I am only summarizing the good work of others (whom I've followed on the Forum over the years) like David, Bill Simpich, Jim D. and John Armstrong (to name a few).  It was CIA, all the way (with a little help from their police friends). 

    Oswald’s postal box was likely being monitored, but (strangely) Harry Holmes never mentioned that Oswald would have to had filled out a 2162 form. All indications are that Oswald did not pick up the rifle package at the Post Office in Dallas ... there is no paperwork to substantiate this, and no witnesses.  I don't think it was the FBI (they were simply covering their organization 'marker' after the fact). 

    The .38 caliber pistol that Oswald allegedly used to kill Tippet was sold from Seaport Traders.  Oswald took order of a snub-nosed Smith &Wesson .38. Before he could order it, he would be required under Texas law to get a “certificate of good character” from either a Justice of the Peace or a District Court Judge. This would be difficult since he was allegedly ordering the pistol under his Alek Hidell alias. Imagine applying for a certificate verifying your character using a phony name ... this leads one to conclude that he never did. There is an invoice (#70638) saying the gun was shipped COD via REA to A. J. Hidell. This particular invoice is (a copy, since the original was never obtained by the FBI). It also states that it was shipped to his PO box address (which  can’t be done) and was shipped to REA office for pick-up.

    John Armstrong looked into this in great detail ... no ID was required to show up and pay the COD charge and retrieve the package. Anybody could have appeared at the office and paid for the pistol. There are no receipts found in Oswald’s belongings (no invoices, no receipt for payment). Someone went to great lengths to forge Oswald's' handwriting, fabricate Waldman Exhibit 7, and connect Oswald to the Hidell alias.  A lot of loose ends here. 

    What is very compelling to me is that an investigator looking into interstate firearms sales at this time was Manuel Pena, the infamous LAPD lieutenant who was later one of the officers "investigating" Robert Kennedy's assassination.  Notably, it was Pena who traced Oswald's telescopic sight to a California gun shop!  Pena was the trusted courier of key evidence being supplied to the FBI ... and he was affiliated with the same mercenaries and cut-outs used by JMWave operatives in various operations -- Saigon, El Salvador, Uruguay, Phoenix -- who were employed by cover with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).   I believe that DPD officers Hill and Westbrook served the same function that LAPD officers Pena and Hernandez did, 5 years later.   

    What are the odds?  

    Gene 

  23. Ordering the revolver appears to be some form of an inside joke. Whoever did order that gun from Seaports was having an inside joke in the process by claiming the name of the person who could vouch for the buyer was DF Drittal. Greg Parker maintains this stands for the German phrase Dienst Fur Drittel - "on behalf of a third party."  Another coincidence is the G-2 linguist John Hurt, who married a Russian immigrant, Ana Drittel, a performing, NY cellist. Eleven months later, the FBI obtains a mail order record of an order for a pistol purchase, with a witness signature signed D.E. or D.F. Drittal. A week prior to the discovery of this mail order record Oswald, under arrest in Dallas, attempts to make a collect phone call from the jail to a John Hurt in Raleigh, NC. Further, Julius Drittel, deceased in 1953, was the brother-in-law of the NSA's John B. Hurt, a master linguist married to Drittel's sister, Ana.  Perhaps it’s something of a major (though cryptic) clue that the rifle was purchased by or for a third party. The other names being German words/phrases strengthen the case that "DF Drittal" is, as well.

    Other coincidences surround the Dodd Subcommittee and the weapons.  An investigator looking into interstate firearms sales at this time was Manuel Pena, the Los Angeles police lieutenant who was later one of the officers investigating Robert Kennedy's assassination. It was Pena who traced Oswald's telescopic sight to a California gun shop.Pena has an odd background; he served in the Navy during WWII and in the Army during the Korean War, and was a Counterintelligence officer in France.  He spoke French and Spanish, and had connections with various intelligence agencies in several countries. Pena also served the CIA for a long time. In 1967, Pena "retired" from the LAPD, leaving to join AID, a cover for political operations in foreign countries.  Roger LeJeunesse, an FBI agent who had been involved in the RFK assassination investigation, told William Turner that Pena had performed special assignments for the CIA for more than ten years. 

    Gerald Hill and William Westbrook are DPD persons of interest, who quickly controlled the Dallas evidence and witnesses while securing a bear trap around Oswald (just as Hernandez and Pena did for LAPD). Hill is described as a downtown “beat sergeant” on temporary loan to Captain Westbrook’s personnel department to purportedly help vet incoming Police Academy cadets. He is not mentioned much in the Warren Report, and yet he managed to be center stage at all of the strategic locations and events of the day, with first-hand knowledge unsurpassed by any other Dallas law officer.  Captain William Westbrook. He was supervising a small unique group, and I don’t believe he’d been with DPD very long. Nor did he stay with them more than a year or so after the assassination. He also didn’t have much to say to the Warren Commission, and they didn’t have much interest in putting him on the record.   Both he and Hill responded pretty quickly to the TSBD … strange considering their normal day jobs and official roles in DPD. Lieutenant Manuel Pena and Sergeant Enrique "Hank" Hernandez were two veterans of the Los Angeles Police Force who had the most day-to-day control of the RFK assassination investigation ... both had CIA connections through their training for and participation in police operations in Latin America.

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