Jump to content
The Education Forum

David Lifton

Members
  • Posts

    1,052
  • Joined

  • Last visited

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male

Recent Profile Visitors

48,136 profile views

David Lifton's Achievements

  1. Has anyone ever advanced a hypothesis as to what Office Hargis was doing, leaning against the light pole, and looking directly across the street at the area where Zapruder had been standing? (Zapruder, remember, said that the shots came "directly from behind me" [approx., from memory]). So just what was Hargis looking at, and what did he see? Did he ever elaborate? That photo, I believe, captures a moment in time that I believe to have been quite relevant. It raises the question: "What did Hargis know, and when did he know it?" Did anyone ever show him this photograph, and ask him that question? (DSL, 6/8/21)
  2. Thanks for "giving credit, where credit is due." FWIW: I first met Doug Horne when I was in Honolulu, Hawaii (circa 1995) giving a JFK lecture at the Punahoe School --a very classy private school which, incidentally, is the high school that was attended by Barack Obama. During the Q & A period following my lecture, I was approached by Doug Horne, who introduced himself, and explained that he was affiliated with the Navy, and--at the time--was stationed at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. Compressing a rather long story: Doug said that he had heard about the creation of the ARRB, and was seeking to apply for a staff position. I thought that was wonderful, but wondered (probably aloud) what the odds were that he would actually be chosen. Some weeks (or months) passed; and one day, the phone rang in my apartment (in West Los Angeles). It was Doug --calling to tell me he had received a letter approving his being hired. I congratulated him, and then we said our goodbyes. But a few minutes later, the full force of what I had heard struck me. I knew that Doug Horne was not just a serious student of the JFK case; but he was a major supporter of my work. In other words, he not only had read--and carefully studied --Best Evidence, but he believed in its validity. Doug understood the full political implications of "body alteration" --more precisely stated, of wound alteration (and autopsy falsification). That it (the falsification of the bullet trajectories) offered a way (i.e., a mechanism) to fabricate a "false story" of Dealey Plaza. He understood the larger "political implications" of my work, -- spelled out in the final chapters of Best Evidence. The notion that altering the President's body (i.e., the wounds) could be the foundation (politically) for operating the constitutionally mandated line of succession, elevating the Vice President to the presidency, in a manner which created the appearance that it (this profoundly important political shift, from Kennedy to Johnson) was a quirk of fate, an accident of history. In short, he appreciated a major concept of Best Evidence: the importance of the assassination having been conceived --and executed --not just as "a shooting" but as a "strategic deception." And now, it seemed, there was a way to act, and to have a serious affect on what appeared to be the "final investigation" of President Kennedy's assassination. So. . within five or ten minutes, I called him back. "Doug," I said (rather excitedly), "Do you realize what this means?" I paused and then went on to explain the obvious: "We can conduct our own investigation of the Kennedy assassination!" I wasn't suggesting "we" do anything untoward or improper; but rather: here was an opportunity to steer the ARRB down the path involving what was truly important; i.e., the key alteration of evidence: (a) That the President's body had been altered, (per Best Evidence, first published in Jan 1981, and by three more publishers since); and (b) that the Zapruder film (and other "civilian films") had --somehow--been gathered and altered. We both agreed to "stay in touch", and that's what we did. On any number of occasions, Doug and I would confer, in detail, as the investigation conducted by the ARRB moved forward. I also had contact with Jeremy Gunn. At some point, I provided audio tapes and filmed records of some of my key interviews. To provide more detail, I may well come back, at some point, and review this post, and modify it as necessary. But there is one incident that stands out, and that I will never forget. Judge Tunheim and the Z film A major mystery was: "How could a motion picture film be altered? How could that have been done?" Pursuing that question led to my spending many hours at the library of the UCLA Film School, where I learned all about "optical printers" --the major editing tool used to edit motion picture film. Doug and I shared an understanding of the importance of film alteration --both the implications, if it had been done; and the details of how that would work. My original focus, of course, was on the many "car stop" witnesses, whereas the Z film(and the other films) showed no such "car stop." Because of those conversations, the ARRB --at Doug's strong suggestion --ended up contracting with Kodak, to bring in experts to examine the film. (To pursue that involves us in a whole other story, involving Roland Zavada, etc.); But back to John Tunheim. Following my increased understanding (i.e., of the link between the car-stop witnesses and the issue of whether the Z film had been altered), I wrote a carefully worded memo to John Tunheim, who was the senior member of the ARRB; about this very issue. I was pleased- -- in fact thrilled --when it became clear that Tunheim "got it". He understood how film editing worked; he understood that yes, the Z film could have been altered; and so he approached Robert Groden --and the many mysteries posed by his testimony, including the question of how Robert Groden had obtained access to almost all the civilian films (in his capacity as an HSCA "consultant") --with some skepticism. Tunheim's "on air" statement The finale to this story occurred one day when I was in my West Los Angeles apartment, doing some house cleaning, with the TV on --watching the ARRB hearings. When, seemingly out of the blue, Judge Tunheim specifically said (and this is close to a direct quote): "I want to thank researcher and author David Lifton, for the work he has done, and the memo he submitted to the ARRB, which demystified film editing, and explained how this worked." Again, I will have to return to this subject, and to what he said --but it was broadcast live on C-Span. I don't know who else Tunheim shared these views with, but I was very pleased to see that he had understood the memo (or memos) that I had written, and extended that "thank you" to me, in a live broadcast, on national TV. (DSL, 6/04/2021; 8:20 PM PDT; edited, 6/5/21; 1:55 PM PDT)
  3. 1. The "car stop" is not on the film (i.e., the film does not show such a thing); rather it is a fact of the "witness" record.. 2. When (back around 1972-1974), Pat Lambert and I set out to create a detailed tabulation of what the Dealey Plaza witnesses observed and reported, the car stop wasn't even on our list(s) of phenomena to be "tabulated".. "Who saw smoke?", for example, was a category; and there were many other categories. Then, sitting in my West L.A. apartment, and as we were working our way through the mass of documents that I had gathered (mainly via a 2,000 page plus order from the National Archives), I noticed (or "we noticed, I forget these details) that one witness after another mentioned the car stop (or, the car having seriously slowed down; we did make that distinction). 3. Almost immediately, I realized the implication: that the Z film (and Nix, and Muchmore, etc.) must have been altered, because the civilian films showed no such thing. It was rather easy to make that "jump" if you'd been a physics (or applied math) major,. which I was. (Both). But I had zero knowledge of how a (civilian) motion picture film could have been altered. 4. Fortunately, being "West L.A. based," I was very familiar with the UCLA campus, and specifically, with the building that housed the "film school" -- Melnitz Hall. 5. I immediately went up there, and learned the UCLA film school had their own library, right there in Melnitz. Within hours, I was seated at a table, and reading an assortment of magazines pertaining to film editing. 6. I learned that the basic tool of a film editor (just as an enlarger is a basic tool of a "still" photographer), was an optical printer. 7. The trade magazine --American Cinematographer, as I recall --had page after page of advertisements re optical printers. At that point, i learned --for the first time -- all about the "machinery" that Robert Groden had been using to make his prints --with the sections in "slo-mo," the enlargements, etc.; and so what Groden was doing was completely demystified. The air simply went out of his balloon--and I use that deliberately, because Groden, while a serious student of the assassination, had another side. And if you wanted a copy of anything, you found yourself in the equivalent of a Turkish market, trying to buy a carpet. 8. Furthermore, the reason RG was able to do all this was not that he was an optical magician; but rather, that he was an employee of Moe Weitzman's company in New York City, "EFX" (the acronym for "special effects"); and of course Weitzman's company had optical printers, probably more than one. (I believe I wrote about all of this in Pig on a Leash.) (Also note: Moe's company was also called "Manhattan Effects," as I recall. 9.. Bottom line: suddenly, with my new found familiarity with optical printers, all the air went out of Groden's balloon, along with his unwillingness to share, etc., so he could maintain his "monopoly." 10. All of this is history. The technology of film editing (it tuns out) was not the issue. The real issue (or problem) was Groden's original access to the key civilian films of the assassination. These were priceless originals. So how did he get access to them all? Groden never finished high school. Hee as not --using insurance company terms --"bonded." So what was the source of his access? The problem (or issue) was the trust that had been placed in Groden by (Notre Dame) law professor Robert Blakey, Gen. Counsel of the HSCA., who was able to obtain many of the key films as part of his investigation. In other words, Blakey operated "under the color of authority, to use the vernacular. His access was legitimate. 11. Although I just wrote "trust," the real issue (or problem) was "mistrust". Because of Groden's access to an optical printer--not really extraordinary, but who the heck knew what such a device was? Blakey needed "exhibits" for his nationally televised hearings. Groden was given possession possession of priceless originals, to make dupes (by bringing them to EFX, in NYC; making the necessary exhibits etc. 12. All very well. But unfortunately, Groden had the ethics of a kleptomaniac, and --once he was given access--there was no guarantee as to what would happen next. 13. The result was that he retained the original and substituted a copy. I have written about this before (on the net, or in Pig on a Leash), and whatever I wrote, or spoke of, was based on many conversations that I had with Groden, and what he told me . All of this has posed a real problem. 14. I believe it is a fact that the true "camera original" of the Nix lilm is nowhere to be found; and the same is true for Muchmore. Gail Nix, Orville Nix's niece (not sure, as I write this, of the precise relationship) has navigated these complex waters with Robert Groden, (who, she realizes probably has her uncle's property). She finds it very upsetting -- similar in reaction to someone who suffers in the aftermath of a kidnapping. 15. Meanwhile-- in the spirit of "these days" --Groden often can be found in Dallas, sitting on the grassy knoll, and --I believe-- knowing well the true whereabouts of the "originals" of a variety of film artifacts that pertain to 11/22/63; and which, IMHO, belong in the U.S. National Archives. 16. Art museums are familiar with the "problem" of letting the wrong person near precious art. A similar situation exists in the world of JFK research. From conversations over the years, I know that the National Archives is well aware of the problem posed by RG and his "collector" mentality. And, quite likely, there are other such persons, when it comes to the JFK assassination. 17. More could be said; but I'll stop here, for now. DSL (David S. Lifton (5/28/21; 6 AM PDT; edited, 6:40 AM PDT) Author, Best Evidence).
  4. Jeremy, As the younger generation might put it, you are "out to lunch." I spent hours with the Chism, Franzen and the Newmans, back in 1971. The car stopped. Period. there is no/was no question about it. If you believe otherwise, you are living in fantasy land. Of all the witnesses who mentioned the car stop, the Newman's were perhaps the most dramatic. The car-stop witnesses are not important because they establish the driver's action in slowing the car; that is secondary. The primary importance of the car-stop witnesses is that they constitute the evidence that the Zapruder film (and other civilian films) were altered, to eliminate the stop. If you believe the assassination was a six second event (and without a car stop), you are living in fantasy land. DSL 5/26/21 --
  5. FWIW: In 1967, I tried speaking with Dr. Burkley, actually calling him at the White House (!). He refused to speak with me. DSL
  6. Please correct "Thopson" misspelling. Corrected: "T h om p s o n" DSL
  7. DSL COMMENT: Two points: Willis Slide 5 --showing the JFK limo on Elm Street, and at a location that corresponds to Zapruder frame 202--specifically shows Glen Bennet looking off to the right 9towards the sidewalk, and a bot above); so that significantly diminishes the probability that he actually observed, what his SS report claims. But much more important is this: that if a Secret Service coverup took place (i.e, was ordered) in this case (and I believe that to be the case), GB'S report can simply not be replied upon; i.e., as valid and truthful evidence. In other words: Glen Bennett's report --about what he claims to have seen (and which was witnessed by no one else) --cannot possibly overturn the credibility of all the medical reports and testimonies of the Dallas medical observers (i.e., at Parkland) which constitute a solid and credible medical record -- a record of what they did not see; a record of what they did not observe: a rear entry (or bullet strike) in the back of JFK's shoulder. Yes, there was a time --decades ago, and when I first studied this case--that I took seriously what Glen Bennett wrote in his SS report (See, for example, "The Case For Three Assassins," written in July 1966, and published in RAMPARTS magazine, January 1967). But not after I made the discovery of pre-autopsy "surgery of the head area" (10/23/66) along with pre-autopsy bullet removal, as laid out carefully, and in detail, in Best Evidence. As I have written --and spoken of, on many occasions-- the key to understanding the JFK case is that there was fraud in the evidence. Deliberate fakery (e.g., bullet 399, planted on the Dallas stretcher, or the two "found fragments," found in the limo at about 10 P.M., when parked in the White House garage). Unfortunately, GB's account (in the official SS reports) of witnessing a bullet strike JFK's dark jacket about "4 inches below" the top of JFK's collar constitutes just such an example. It should--and must be--recognized as a "joker in the deck". A deliberately false eyewitness account. And one must not play cards when there are such "jokers in the deck." (DSL, 4/13/21; 1:15 AM PDT)
  8. Your statement (Lawrence): "I just don’t see any realistic opportunity to steal the body while it was on AF1." DSL RESPONSE: Your analysis is incorrect The body was not "stolen" while it was "on" --as in "on board," AF-1. The President's body was offloaded onto a fork lift truck, then shifted to the forward luggage area of Air Force One. All of this was covered in detailed posts years ago. You ought to familiarize yourself with the existing record. DSL P.S.: Re your statement: "Rather than a pre-autopsy. . I think (that) the more plausible answer is. " etc. Again. . .No, not true. See the "pre-autopsy autopsy" --Chapter 18 of Best Evidence As to your assertion that the testimony "decades later" was "inaccurate or poisoned" by what they "read or heard" (later). Really ... you "know" that? How may I ask? I interviewed the key people-- not just by telephone, but then in fully professionally filmed interviews--circa 1979 and 1980. These events were peak events, that made a deep unforgettable impression on each of the participants. Getting the key people on film was an exciting and memorable experience-- almost all of it was pre-Internet. Your casual rejection of their accounts and glib explanation(s) that "their recollections were either inaccurate or poisoned by what they read or heard about that evening" is based on. . . on what. Lawrence? Its a glib explanation that explains nothing. You're spouting nonsense from some class at law school. If you had interviewed the people --as I did-- you'd realize that for these participants, their recollections were akin to "hallowed ground." Today, its 2021. You're entering the scene almost half a century later. Your after-the-fact commentary has little value, and no probative force. Spouting supeficialities that you picked up from some law school class on evidence is no substitute for careful filmed interviewing conducted decades ago --circa 1978 - 1980. DSL
  9. Paul Jolliffe: Re: "David, I agree that the largest papers in New York and Washington were pushing the "lone nut" line way too early, but I'm not at all convinced that the Dallas Police were certain of that on Friday." You refer to "the largest papers in New York and Washington" who 'were pushing the 'lone nut' line way too early'" Agreed, but the situation is even worse than that. FYI: I went down this path many years ago --decades ago--and obtained the key "real time" wire service records, both for AP and UPI. In one case, I actually went up to UPI Headquarters, in New york City, and spent hours there. Now back to what I found (and doing this from memory): There were instances of "suspicious" writing, in those early hours, and I became persuaded that a key aspect of the plot was to directly control the emergence of the "official" story. However. . .: Because of multiple moves --California to Texas, and then onward from there-- I cannot locate those records at this time, but the point I want to make is this: It was not "the largest papers in New York and Washington" that holds the key; rather, the source is "upstream" from there. Specifically, to the UPI and AP original wire service records, as they were transmitted (i.e., in real time) on 11/22/63. Why do I say that? Because those newspapers either had an AP teleprinter or a UPI, or both. (Remember, for example: The Cabinet Plane had a UPI Printer, and you can read all about that, in Pierre Salinger's 1967 memoir, With Kennedy) -- see Chapter 1. So. . . these "early" dispatches --while sometimes word-for-word AP or UPI (with appropriate by byline, or credit), there were instances where they would have their own reporter, and that person would use either or both of those sources, while writing his own copy. For example: I remember one dispatch, "For internal use", that read (approx): "CORRECTION: Please note: In previous dispatch such-and-so please change Mauser, 7.65 to Carcano". etc. Something like that. I spent months on this project. As far as I'm concerned, the AP and UPI "real time record" is a "primary source"; and as important as anything one can find in the 26 volumes or at the National Archives. Because there is how the official story developed, minute bt minute, during the first few hours. And yes, I came away from all this with the feeling that there must have been (or "may have been") one or two high level AP or UPI persons who were "involved." DSL
  10. No, I am convinced a crucial part of the plot was not merely to frame "Oswald" but to kill him immediately. A dead "Oswald" with all of his (supposed) work as a pro-Castro agent would have led immediately to an invasion of Cuba. The other unidentified shooters could (in the heat of the moment) been named as Castro agents. DSL response: I agree. it was intended from the outset that Oswald would be shot, within 1-2 min of the shooting, and supposedly while trying to "escape." etc. In other words --and I used to say this a lot, when I first had these insights, (many) years ago: the plot to kill JFK was, from the outset, a plot to kill two people --i.e., two persons --JFK (of course) and the pre-designated scapegoat (LHO), with the original intention being that both would be dead within the first few minutes. DSL
  11. My first (and only) telephone interview with Jenkins occurred in late September 1979 (I am doing this from memory). The main point I would like to make (about Jenkins) is that he didn't remember very much --if anything--that was relevant. I didn't think of this as being sinister. Jenkins just didn't remember. When I had arranged for funding for filmed interviews, I put Jenkins on the list. I flew to Canyon Lake[s], Texas, and that's where I interviewed Jenkins, on camera, around midnight, at his lakeside residence. Just about everything I asked was met with the response that he didn't remember. His wife, Jackie, was present, and very understanding. During a brief intermission (pauses that occurred when we were changing film reels --each of which took an 11 minute cartridge) she took me aside and asked (basically): "Why are you treating James this way?" My response was that I wasn't trying to be impolite, just trying to question him as firmly as possibly, and elicit whatever he remembered. And yet here he was--in effect, answering "I don't remember" ---to just about everything (except his name). It was only years later, under the "tutelage" (quotes deliberate) of William Law, that his recollections (supposedly) blossomed. One other matter: during my questionin seemed to imply that he knew things "weren't right." I specifically asked him: if that was the case, then why didn't he go to the DOJ, or wrote Robert Kennedy a letter. IMHO: the whole thing (the Law and Jenkins "recovered memory" show, or however may wish to describe it) results in a totally unreliable version of what happened on the night of 11/22/63, at the Bethesda morgue. If this were a legal proceeding, and anyone tried to introduce Jenkins' so-called "recollections" this many years "after the fact," they would be laughed out of court. I say this because it is so obvious that there is a "prior recollection" --the phone record and filmed record that I made establishes that. All this pains me because I see many well meaning people on the London Forum addressing serious questions to Jenkins, not knowing of this history. IMHO: the essence of what is going on here is this: I interviewed Paul O'Connor, first by phone, and then on camera. PKO (I always called him that in my research notes) was a strong witness; and he became the "John Wayne" of the film. Then, inJanuary 1981, B.E. was published, and I was on my national book tour, airing the O'Connor footage on numerous occasions. At some point, Jenkins --possibly because of envy of O'Connor (to whom he is distantly related) --and, years later, possibly egged on (or "stimulated") by Law ) -- "found" his memories. Voila!. William law (via Jenkins) was then able to launch his career as a JFK researcher. My own reaction to all of this, and particularly, my advice to anyone studying the medical evidence in this case: Beware, at this late date, of anything coming from Jenkins, via William Law. Take into account what I have written here, and be skeptical of anything Jenkins now "remembers". IMHO: These are not reliable recollections; they are some mangled mish-mash of "recovered memory", plus a desire to appear important in history--as important as Paul O'Connor, to whom he is distantly related (and with whom --for whatever reason --he feels rather "competitive"). I post these remarks with some regret. I am pleased to see a "new generation" involved in JFK research. I would advise caution in taking seriously anything that emerges decades later, especially launched under the guidance of a third party. DSL (3/8/2021)
  12. That is correct. When I first interviewed Jenkins by phone (fall, 1980), he had no recollection of any such details, just as you have stated. Then, I interviewed him on camera; the result was the same. Keep in mind the chronology: I interviewed Paul O'Connor, on film, in late August 1980. In late Sept (or early October) I interviewed James Jenkins --who was distantly related to Paul O'Connor. James Jenkins had nothing specific to offer, except a feeling that things 'weren't right' that night. I remember asking him why, if he felt that way, he didn't communicate with someone at the Department of Justice, or even write a letter directly to Attorney General Robert Kennedy. He had no answer. I questioned him vigorously, to such an extent that his wife, Jackie, who was present, took me aside during a brief pause (when we were changing film reels) and mildly scolded me for treating her husband that way. i explained that I was only trying to elicit the information he seemed to indicate he might have, but could not (for whatever reason) articulate. When the footage was edited, Paul O'Connor's account played a major role. He was forthright, and extremely credible; I called him the "John Wayne" of the film. Best Evidence was published in mid-January 1981; and then I went on a national book tour, showing excerpts from my filmed O'Connor interview in cities all over the country. Now "Flashforward" to many years later: At some point in time, along came William Law, who sought my assistance in contacting one of the B. E. witnesses. At some point in time --and I don't know the details-- Law met Jenkins who, I came to understand (because of a conversation with O'Connor) --was rather envious of the publicity (and, to some extent) the notoriety that Paul had received. At this point, Jenkins' recollections seem to have blossomed, and that's about all I know. I would remind readers that in the law, its the "earliest recollection" that is viewed as the "better" evidence. Paul O'Connor was forthright, and what he had to say was put on the record. I have no idea as to why, if Jenkins had significant information, he did not volunteer it, when I first interviewed him, by phone; or the following year, when i spent a good hour with him, on camera. DSL (3/8/21; 2:30 AM PST)
  13. Here's the problem (as I see it) and this is the problem with attempting to properly evaluate McHugh's statement (as quoted by Manchester): When McHugh stated that the casket was "cheap and thin" and "its really shabby" --was he referring to a shipping casket? Yes, that is certainly a possibility, but what McHugh says next would seem to make clear that --in fact--he was referring to the fancy ceremonial casket. Specifically, McHugh said: "One handle is off, and the ornaments are in bad shape." Those statements make clear he was referring to the casket that was loaded aboard Air Force One at Love Field. And that would have been the (ceremonial) casket. Remember Manchester's description of the onload at Love Field: the coffin (being described) had to be turned sharply to the right, etc. , and that's when that damaged occurred. Hence, my conclusion is: because McHugh described the damage in such detail, and because that damage matched what occurred during the Love Field onload of the ceremonial coffin at Love Field, we can safely assume he is describing the Dallas (ceremonial) casket. Had McHugh been called as a witness the simplest form of questioning would have prevented any confusion on this point. (DSL)
×
×
  • Create New...