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Paul Rigby

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  1. A further piece of house-keeping following previous posts, and one that illustrates yet again how the espionage past does telescope into the future of intelligence work: Why did the small, independent Metromedia TV group get the privilege of debuting – on its New York flagship, WNEW-TV - the first version of the Z fake on US television? The answer lies in the name and career of its owner, John W Kluge; and the preference of the Dallas coup plotters for deploying seasoned oak at the plot’s major stress points. The extract to follow is from a recent post by a well-informed Russian journalist: The Alsos mission extended – indeed, began – in Italy, where a youthful OSS officer called James Angleton was shortly to cross its path. Small world. 210214 E Kucher, Navalny, Bellingcat & the Fifth Column in the FSB (Stalkerzone, 26pp) The full tribute: [Congressional Record Volume 156, Number 133 (Wednesday, September 29, 2010)] [Extensions of Remarks] [Pages E1837-E1838] From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov] HONORING MR. JOHN WERNER KLUGE ______ HON. JAMES P. MORAN of Virginia in the house of representatives Wednesday, September 29, 2010 Mr. MORAN of Virginia. Madam Speaker, I rise today to honor the accomplishments of Mr. John Werner Kluge, who recently passed away on September 7, 2010, in Charlottesville, Virginia. Mr. Kluge's lifetime of achievements included being a world-renowned businessman and philanthropist, as well as a key contributor to our national security during the Second World War. Mr. Kluge created Metromedia in 1960, which was the Nation's first major independent broadcasting entity, a conglomerate that grew to include seven television stations, 14 radio stations, the Harlem Globetrotters, the Ice Capades, radio paging and mobile telephones. Although his success as a businessman supplied him with vast wealth, acknowledged as the wealthiest man in America in 1989 by Forbes Magazine, he believed some of his greatest achievements came from the benefits society gained from his wide-ranging donations. Mr. Kluge gave a total of more than $63 million to the University of Virginia throughout his lifetime, which has allowed one of our Nation's most prestigious Universities to maintain itself in the top-tier of colleges nationwide. His donations to medical programs provided crucial aid to disabled and chronically ill children, while his involvement in prostate cancer research has led to groundbreaking advancements towards containing the disease once being detected. He also believed in the need for better end-of-life care, which led him and his wife, Tussi, to provide funding to establish professorships in the field at the University of Virginia. In 2000, his generosity even reached the Capitol through his $73 million donation to the Library of Congress, of which he will always be remembered by the Kluge Prize for the Study of Humanities. But perhaps his most important contribution was one that he is least known for. Mr. Kluge enlisted in the United States Army in 1940. In 1942, during World War II, he was promoted to Captain and appointed as the senior officer at the top secret military intelligence post located in Fort Hunt Park, along the George Washington Memorial Parkway. The top secret post was known only by its mailing address, P.O. Box 1142. While there, Captain Kluge led the men and women at the post in reviewing top secret documents and performing interrogations of more than 4,000 important German prisoners of war. Through the efforts of his unit, our military was provided with crucial information that helped end World War II and give the United States an early advantage in the Cold War. Even more impressive were the tactics he used to obtain such information. Rather than physical torture, Captain Kluge honored the Geneva Convention by obtaining information from prisoners through earning their trust. It was a clear contrast from the approach we initially pursued with captured terrorists and suspected terrorists at Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib prisons. Through casual conversation, card games, and taking walks, he and his unit were able to extract vital information that led to the discovery of most of Germany's secret weapons programs that included research to develop the atomic bomb, the jet engine, and the V-2 rocket. Madam Speaker, I wish to commend Mr. John W. Kluge on his lifelong accomplishments and contributions to society, as well as for the crucial service he provided our country with at a time of war. While he was a man of numerous successes, he was also a man of endless generosity. He refused to ask for recognition or acknowledgement for his numerous charitable donations, but instead preferred the [Page E1838] grins and smiles from those who knew him well. Mr. Kluge was not only an outstanding soldier and American, but most importantly an outstanding human being.
  2. The assumed bidding process for the Z fake that left the Lucepress in (nominal) control of the still rights, and UPI-Newsfilm with the film equivalent, was either serendipitous in the extreme, or else a fairy tale to disguise a remarkably shrewd allocation by the plotters. There is every reason to suspect the latter, not least from the ludicrously melodramatic terms in which, for example, Stolley characterized his alleged triumph over CBS’s Rather in the supposed battle for the film rights. Hyperbole is, after all, a characteristic of the anti-alterationists, as a further specimen, this time from James Altgens, amusingly reminds us. The point of what follows is to suggest, without overtly lying, that Altgens’ photographs went straight from Dallas to the world – without first journeying to AP’s HQ in New York. “All the wires were connected together, which means they got in Africa and London, all over the world, at the same time that people got it in the USA. It was fantastic.” Indeed. The reader is thrown into the benign world of Heath Robinson, where newswires behave like rope or spaghetti, and no CIA beasts lurk. To confirm how well the combination of Lucepress and UPI-Newsfilm gelled, consider the proximity of their Chicago centers of operation. All three facilities lay within a security friendly, and distinctly handy, walking distance. How much easier to set up a coordinating office charged with preventing discrepancies and, if necessary, responding to any freshly occurring problems, such as, for wild examples, the necessity to terminate the distribution of the film-as-film; or break the plates in response to a changed selection of images. https://www.loc.gov/resource/usteledirec.usteledirec04873x/?sp=399&r=0.699,0.147,0.304,0.157,0 Illinois White Pages Chicago July 1964 KICH through Z Image 399 (of 480) United Press International news & administrative 430 N Mich 467-5050 news pictures 430 N Mich 644-8320 news film div 161 E Grand 644-8890 coml photography div 430 N Mich WH 4-4733 https://www.loc.gov/resource/usteledirec.usteledirec04873x/?sp=384&r=0.732,0.015,0.304,0.157,0 Illinois White Pages Chicago July 1964 KICH through Z Image 399 (of 480) Time & Life Bldg 540 N Mich DE 7-5860 Time Magazine advs & editorial ofs 221 NLoSal AN 3-2860 circulation & subscription dept 540 N Mich WH 4-4720 production ofc 330 E Cermak DA 6-1212 https://www.loc.gov/resource/usteledirec.usteledirec04874x/?sp=208&r=0.475,0.16,0.607,0.314,0 Illinois White Pages Chicago July 1964 A through KICA Image 208 (of 418) Donnelly RR & Sons Co printers Corporate Hdqtrs 2223 SoPkwy 431-8000 Chicago Mfg Div 350 E Cerkak 431-8000 Did the agency set up a coordinating center in the midst of UPI-Newsfilm, Time and R R Donnelley’s? It may not have been necessary. The four-man Life delegation dispatched from New York to Chicago, ostensibly to provide oversight only for the magazine and its printer, included John Dille, co-author with a 1959 Polish defector, Pawel Monat, of The Spy Among Us (Harper & Row, 1962), a work designed to both stoke Cold War paranoia, and, perhaps less obviously, bolster the counter-intelligence link between Angleton and Papich. As part of the book’s promotion, it produced one of the more surreal moments of CBS’ 1963 output
  3. CIA advice to its employees, 1961 https://www.cia.gov/library/center-for-the-...i2a03p_0001.htm APPROVED FOR RELEASE 1994 CIA HISTORICAL REVIEW PROGRAM 18 SEPT 95 OFFICIAL USE ONLY Intelligence market for the product of the camera fan's fun. SNAPSHOTS AT RANDOM Jane Schnell Everyone who has taken photographs in a foreign country has collected potential ground photographic intelligence. The traveler turns his camera upon anything that excites his interest -- the civil engineer on peculiarities in the construction of dams, roads, bridges, and city buildings; a woman perhaps on clothing, jewelry, and hair styles; a doctor on things related to disease and therapy; a farmer on crops and tools and methods of farming. The more widely traveled the man behind the camera and the broader his interests, the more discriminating he is likely to be in photographing subject matter peculiar to a particular place. But the potential intelligence thus collected is often lost; there are two minimum requirements for transforming it into actual photo intelligence. One is that the pictures must be identified, at least by the name of the place or subject, the direction the camera was facing, and the date. The other is that they must get to the market. The most omnivorous and insatiable broker for the photo intelligence market is the CIA Graphics Register. If you have a batch of photos taken anywhere abroad, properly identified and preferably with negatives, the Register would like to look them over. If they were taken in London or Paris or Vienna, say, the pickings may be slim, but the Register would like to decide for itself. And if it knows in advance that you are going to have a tour in some less well frequented place, it may be interested enough in promoting your hobby to supply you with camera and film. With a minimum of effort, adding to the pictures you normally would take anyway a notation of the place, time, and direction and as much descriptive data as you can, you are likely to produce some useful photos. Targets of Opportunity The results will be much better, however, if you add to this minimum effort a little more and become as familiar as you can with photo collection manuals and lists of requirements on the area. Graphics Register can refer you to general publications on these subjects;1 and attaché offices in all the U.S. diplomatic missions have such manuals and requirements lists in detail for their particular areas. You can pick out of the listings a few things that are of interest to you and accessible for photographing in the course of your normal day-to-day activities. One standing requirement, for example, is photographs of prominent persons in almost any field, especially the military, political, economic, and scientific. If an election is coming up and campaigning is in progress, why not take a few pictures of the speakers? If they are within 50 feet of a 35 mm. camera, the heads can be enlarged to an identifiable likeness. The closer the better, naturally, but the main thing is to get them on film and in focus. The fact that an object may have been photographed previously by no means disqualifies it: changes, or the absence of changes, in it over a period of years or of weeks may be important. And changes aside, it is amazing how many pictures of the same object can be taken without telling the whole story. Although I must have seen hundreds of photographs of the Eiffel Tower before I went to France, it wasn't until I walked under it that I realized the first balcony has a big hole in it. So looking up, I photographed the tower through the hole; and then, just for fun, I kept trying to find another photograph that showed there was such a hole in the middle of the balcony. It was three and a half years before I saw one. A good photographic practice is to take the normal view of an object and then try to think up a different viewpoint and take that also. Few people look up, and it is often by looking up that you find an extraordinary picture. If a new gas storage tank is being built in the city where you are stationed and you drive past it going to work every day, why not photograph it once a week or once a month? The photos will tell how long it takes to build it, what types of materials and methods of construction are used, and how much gas storage capacity is being added. Maybe you don't know what a gas storage tank looks like, and all you see is a big tank being built. Take a picture of it anyway; obviously it is built to store something. What you don't know about it the analyst will. That is what he is an analyst for, but he can't analyze it if you don't get him the pictures. Captions A bit of extra effort put into captioning your shots will pay off, too. One kind of information you may not be in the habit of noting for your own purposes, technical data, may be of importance to the Register. This includes the kind of camera and lens, the type of film, and the speed of exposure, as well as a serial number for each roll and frame. You should especially make note if you have used a telephoto or wide-angle lens. Information on the type of film and exposure speed will not only assist in its development but also make it possible for you to get advice on how to correct any mistakes you make and improve your technique. Roll 20, frame No. 3. 2 May 1959. 1100 local time. Malaya, Kelantan state. Town, road, waterway. Main road between Kota Bharu and Kuala Trengganu looking south at ferry toward village of Jerteh. Note cut at right for bridge under construction (see frames 1 and 2 for other shots of bridge). Most important, however, is good identifying data about each picture. The essential elements are the date (and the time of day may be useful); the precise place; the subject or subjects, with special note of particular features of intelligence interest; and the direction the camera was facing, by compass or with reference to landmarks. It might be noted, for example, that frame no. 7 of roll 2 was exposed at 1330 on 17 November, one mile east of Otaru, Hokkaido, on the road to Sapporu, looking north and showing a Soviet trawler in the bay. Or from a second-floor street window of the Hotel Europe in Bangkok, looking down on a passer-by identified as so-and-so on his way to the corner to hail a samlor. These essentials can frequently be supplemented to advantage with additional comments or with printed matter bearing on a particular picture. Perhaps the idea of the target came from facts you read in the newspaper; clip the article out and send it along. You find your way around unfamiliar cities with the help of guidebooks, free tourist maps, and maps bought at local survey offices or book stores. The analyst can use the same material to find his way around your photographs; if you can't send copies, at least make reference to the tools of travel you used. In the absence of printed material it is extremely useful to draw a sketch showing the relationship of pictured objects. A sketch is particularly good when there are several shots of the same subject from different vantage points, or of different subjects near each other, or of subjects that are not mapped. The analyst never complains that he is given too many facts about a picture. Spies and People You may want to shoot beyond your targets of casual opportunity and make trips or excursions expressly for the purpose of getting useful pictures. Fine; but since you are presumably abroad on some other government business, it is paramount that you remember you are taking pictures for fun. You should never take photos at the risk of your proper work, your purpose in being there. This need for discretion is of course a greater limitation in some places than in others. Once you have decided upon a target, the thing to do is become as familiar with it as possible, learn for sure just what the limitations of law and discretion are, and forget completely why you want the pictures. Try to take them for some other reason than intelligence collection. I once wanted to photograph a new electric power plant in Malaya. So far as I knew, nobody would question my taking the pictures; but it is a little odd for a girl to go around photographing power plants. First, I had to find it, somewhere around a certain town. I drove out the main road from that town, which finally passed under some high power wires. After taking pictures of the road in both directions, and the wires and towers in both directions, I drove on, planning to take the next road turning off either right or left parallel with the wires. But at the next turn a sign pointed to the power plant. I photographed the side road and then drove down it until I came to a one-way bridge with a policeman at each end and the power plant on the other side. The first policeman waved me to a stop. I got out of the car, camera in hand, and went up and asked him why. He said I had to wait a few minutes, the Sultan was coming. I asked what was the big building on the other side of the river. "That's our new power plant," he said proudly. "That's nice," I said, "Does it work now?" "Oh, yes." "Golly," I said, "Can I take a picture of it?" "Sure, why don't you go to the other end of the bridge, you get a better shot." So I shot a lot of pictures, some including the bridge and a nearby railway bridge, with a lot of kibitzing, until the Sultan came past in his Mercedes. Then I thanked the policeman and left, congratulating myself that nothing could have been easier. If I'd been as smart as I thought I was I'd have got a good picture of the Sultan and one of the policeman. No matter how much you see, if it isn't in your camera it's worthless. The biggest hazard to the camera fan who has ulterior motives is people-himself, ordinary people, and people who might suspect him. If you act suspicious even the ordinary people will become suspicious. If you act quite ordinary even the suspicious people will think you quite ordinary. That is why it is important for you to forget the reason you are taking your pictures. Just take them; but know what you will say if you are questioned. Sometimes if people are watching me take pictures it makes me nervous, so I retaliate by turning my camera on them to make them nervous. In the places I've been they are either so pleased they stop being inquisitive or suspicious or else they are embarrassed and go away. I have been told that in the Middle East they often throw things, and that in the Soviet bloc it can be quite dangerous; but in Asia usually they giggle. Some friends of mine in Borneo used a polaroid camera to divert the people with pictures of themselves while they took candid shots. One Dyak requested a photo of the tattoo on his back; he had never seen it! Refer to Hard Copy for Image Roll 27, frame 11. February 1960. Burma, Kachin state, Shwegu village. Sociological. Man cutting bamboo. The necessary equipment for ground intelligence photography consists of one camera and plenty of film. A camera, like a pair of shoes, is an individual and personal matter. I prefer a 35 mm. negative because its 20 or 36 frames per standard roll last longer without changing film, and larger cameras are too heavy and bulky. I would not use a smaller one, of the subminiature class, except for some special reason; the negative is so small that enlargement potential is seriously limited. And ordinary people, if they bother to think about it, think spies use tiny cameras that can be hidden. If you go around more or less like a tourist with a popular-sized one you avoid being conspicuous. There are many publications on cameras and photographic techniques, on special lenses, on the respective advantages of black-and-white and color, of fine-grain and fast film. I haven't tried to touch on these subjects. All I have tried to do is point out that an opportunity exists for travelers interested in photography to make a considerable contribution to basic intelligence through collecting ground photos. I collected them because I thought it important, because it helped me learn about the place where I was living, and because it was fun. BIBLIOGRAPHY The Guide for Graphics Coordinators. INR/State, October 1960. An excellent new handbook. A Manual for the Collection of Ground Photography and Related Data. Bureau of Aeronautics, NAVAER 10-35-650, March 1953. This is the best previous guide, illustrating many techniques and giving many examples. Techniques for Producing Good Ground Photography for Intelligence Purposes. Secret. Photographic Intelligence Memorandum, CIA/ORR, GP/I-198, 18 July 1956. Volume 4-Political Affairs, of Foreign Service Manual. TL:PA-28, 7-25-60. A Guide to the Collection of Ground Intelligence Photography on Ports and Harbors. Confidential. Photographic Intelligence Memorandum, CIA/ORR, PIM-2, September 1957. Amateur Photography from Commercial Aircraft. Secret. Photographic Intelligence Memorandum, CIA/ORR, GP/I--205, 14 August 1956. Intelligence Collection Guidance Manual-Intelligence Photography. Confidential. Air Force Manual 200-9, 1 February 1955. Intelligence Collection Guidance Manual-Industrial Recognition. Air Force Manual 200-7, 15 December 1955. Intelligence Collection Guide-Telecommunications. Confidential. Army Pamphlet 30-100, July 1955.
  4. The Dullesian approach to imperfection: "As I say, if you stopped always and think of all the consequences of all the actions you take, you do nothing. This wasn’t a world in which one could do nothing. It wasn’t a do-nothing world."
  5. Alas, John, no shooting took place in the approach to, or during, the turn from Houston on to Elm, despite the fact that this location would have provided much great plausibility for both shooting scenarios potentially available – a single assassin or an ambush. In the first, the twin issues of the patsy’s marksmanship and choice of weapon would have been greatly diminished, if not vanquished all together. Deploying the second alternative, a plot in which Oswald worked in conjunction with “fellow” agents of, say, Castro and/or Krushchev*, the headlines write themselves: America’s Petit-Clamart! Dallas’ Bastien-Thiry executed in desperate cinema shoot-out! So why didn’t the plotters select this much better site? The answer is obvious: the credibility of the shooting scenario was subordinated to the need to minimise the number of potential witnesses and cameras. In fairness to you, it should be note that the plotters did briefly utilize the fiction of a shooting sequence which commenced on Houston, though only for the purpose of attempting to reconcile the Z fake with the import of the Doctors’ press conference at Parkland. Here’s how the CIA briefers spun it, in stages: Note how in example 1, the first shot, which does not impact, is fired while the presidential limousine is on Houston: John Herbers, “Kennedy Struck by Two Bullets, Doctor Who Attended Him Says,” New York Times, November 27, 1963, p.20: “…The known facts about the bullets, and the position of the assassin, suggested that he started shooting as the President’s car was coming toward him, swung his rifle in an arc of almost 180 degrees and fired at least twice more. A rifle like the one that killed President Kennedy might be able to fire three shots in two seconds, a gun expert indicated after tests. A strip of color movie film taken by a Dallas clothing manufacturer with an 8-mm camera tends to support this sequence of events. The film covers about a 15-second period. As the President’s car come abreast of the photographer, the President was struck in the front of the neck.” In this second example, the first shot, which now does impact, occurs as the turn is made from Houston onto Elm: Arthur J. Snider (Chicago Daily News Service), “Movies Reconstruct Tragedy,” Fort Worth Star-Telegram, (Evening edition), November 27, 1963, section 2, p.1: “Chicago, Nov. 27 – With the aid of movies taken by an amateur, it is possible to reconstruct to some extent the horrifying moments in the assassination of President Kennedy. As the fateful car rounded the turn and moved into the curving parkway, the President rolled his head to the right, smiling and waving. At that instant, about 12:30 p.m., the sniper, peering through a four-power telescope sight, fired his cheap rifle. The 6.5 mm bullet – about .25 caliber – pierced the President’s neck just below the Adam’s apple. It took a downward course.” And here’s the process completed in example 3, with the presidential limousine now “50 yards past Oswald” on Elm: Paul Mandel, “End to Nagging Rumors: The Six Critical Seconds,” Life, 6 December 1963: “The doctor said one bullet passed from back to front on the right side of the President’s head. But the other, the doctor reported, entered the President’s throat from the front and then lodged in his body. Since by this time the limousine was 50 yards past Oswald and the President’s back was turned almost directly to the sniper, it has been hard to understand how the bullet could enter the front of his throat. Hence the recurring guess that there was a second sniper somewhere else. But the 8mm film shows the President turning his body far around to the right as he waves to someone in the crowd. His throat is exposed–toward the sniper’s nest–just before he clutches it.” Given that the film-as-film could not be reshown while the above delineated process of fraudulent harmonisation - of medical testimony with the lone-assassin-from-the-rear – was undertaken, you now have the explanation for why the first version of the Z fake shown on TV (26 November 1963) failed to contain the Houston Street sequence described the day before by Rather; and was then suppressed on the very same day it was shown. It seems highly likely to me that the detailed, if thoughly bogus, briefings plainly afforded Herbers, Snider and Mandel emanated from among those plotters intent upon suppression and the head snap reversal. They were, after all, classic episodic CIA fictions of precisely the kind we find issued – by amazing coincidence, among others, Hal Hendrix - following the Bay of Pigs landing. *And if you don’t like that combination of conspirators, they have others...
  6. The second great flaw of Horne’s work resided in his failure, entirely excusable given the vast amount of diverse and unrelated material with which he was confronted, to work through the implications of the Z fake’s second, clandestine visit to the NPIC. Only one senior figure within, but not constrained by, the formal CIA hierarchy had the bureaucratic heft, autonomy and resource to pull off this mini-coup. Of all of the leading contenders of the day, only one figure not only those qualities in spades, but also the motivation, to do so. It was the same man whose unit controlled the patsy and obstructed all efforts, both before and after the coup, to clarify Oswald’s true purposes, allegiances and movements. James Angleton also possessed the counter-intelligence background, mind-set, and methodology for the task of utilizing assassination films precisely as one would human assets, not for instant resolution, but rather long-range deception. The most penetrating and lucid passages on Angleton and his philosophy of intelligence are to be found in Robin Winks’ 1987 study, Cloak and Gown, which devoted its longest chapter to the man and his reign. For Winks, the story began in war-time London, where the youthful OSS-er pondered the specific lessons of Ultra: “If one is prepared to pay a price high enough price to deceive the enemy…” The enemy, this time, was us and the first version of the Z fake, the one that had passed muster at the first NPIC visit on the evening of Saturday, 23 November, paid no price. It offered, to the contrary, mere reinforcement to the Washington establishment consensus lie that a single assassin had struck his target high from the rear. Angleton, together with his minions and allies, despised that consensus and saw far richer potentialities. If the majority of the US political establishment sought to close the door on the case, Angleton et al were intent upon throwing it open – to paranoia, doubt, and unresolvable mystery. If the idea of using film on a grand scale to cover up the assassination did not originate with Angleton and his immediate circle, it was nevertheless assured of a warm welcome. For Angleton, according to Winks, “the object…was to live in a real world while thrusting the enemy into an unreal one.” This object was especially achievable if, “after establishing the superior source…in place…an orchestration could be built up, to the point of layer upon layer of confirming information would also support the deception.” One film of the assassination good: Two or three buttressing it? Even better. Film, replacing human assets, offered Angleton the perfect means to achieve this end. More than a mere screen between history and the execution, it offered nothing less than an alternate reality. But why waste such potential riches on swift resolution? There were, after all, two Kennedys still to deal with, not to mention a number of other high-profile irritants likely to require disposal in future days. And the small matter of reviving the Cold War, complete with Cuban or Soviet assassins in Dallas, once all the post-assassination hullaballoo had quieted. The failure of the plotters to achieve the planned post-mortem surgery to JFK’s body at Parkland Hospital, followed by the doctors’ press conference, created the perfect opportunity to subvert the pre-packaged establishment consensus under the guise of redeeming it. In response to the insistence of Perry and Clark that the two shots which hit Kennedy came from the front, the first version of the Z fake would be scrapped, and a key change made to neutralise the suspicion aroused by that medical testimony: the moment of the throat wound impact would be moved back down Elm and a road sign interposed to cover it. But that would take Time ( and Life), and while it was undertaken, Angleton could ensure the first bread crumbs were seeded leading to his masterstroke, the change that would ensure the conscription of most potential critics in defence of the unreal world - the reintroduction of previously excised frames revealing Kennedy’s propulsion forward, not back, in response to the headshot. Angleton was prepared to pay the price. 1) The lesser of two evils & 2) the value of undefined conspirators Jim Douglass. JFK and the Unspeakable: Why he died and why it matters (NY: Orbis Books, 2008), p.456 n367: Those who would argue that the film was not altered point especially to its depiction of the backward snap of JFK’s head, providing evidence of a shot from the front. As David Wrone writes, “Why would the government steal and alter the Zapruder film to hide a conspiracy only to have that alteration contain evidence that a conspiracy killed JFK?” (David Wrone, The Zapruder Film: Reframing JFK’s Assassination [Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, 2003], p.122) However, if as we have seen the initial assassination scenario’s purpose included scapegoating the Soviet Union and Cuba, evidence of a conspiracy was no problem, so long as it did not implicate the U.S. government per se – as would have been the case if the film revealed the Secret Service stopping the car to facilitate the shooting.
  7. And that's exactly what happened, but not for the reasons commonly believed or hitherto specified. One further point. I would entirely discount the notion of a unified CIA approach to the matter. The evidence points unmistakably to a plot and cover-up which reflected the prevailing power relations within the agency prior to 22 November 1963; and thus to the dominant role and methodology of a particular unit - faction, if you prefer - among the plotters. The same bunch in effect, who served up Oswald as the patsy.
  8. Doug Horne’s work on the two, rigidly compartmentalized, visits of the Z fake to the CIA’s NPIC - first on the evening of Saturday, 23 November, and again the following night - is remarkable and I remain deeply in his debt. That indebtedness duly noted, there are profound flaws. Two are key. Combined, the pair demolish his case that the primary cause of incriminating evidence remaining within the altered Zapruder film was the consequence of time pressure on the scale and in the sequence he postulated. The first of these flaws comprised an erroneous assumption. Horne proceeded as if there existed little or no contemporaneous coverage, by newspapers and magazines, of the Z fake’s early chain of possession & content save for that nugatory amount which has been generally accepted for decades within the research community. By failing to check if this was true – Horne was, and remains, anything but alone on that score - and his consequent failure to integrate such material into a framework in which the two NPIC visits were merely a component of a bigger picture, he made important errors. Consider the question of the chain of possession. Horne’s ignorance of the material contained within coetaneous sources leads him to repeat uncritically the retrospectively manufactured myth that Time-Life obtained the film rights on Monday, 25 November, and promptly suppressed the film-as-film. Contemporaneous newspaper reports, by contrast, blow apart all such lazy assumptions: UPI-Newsfilm originally had the film and distributed it; and a number of stations – most notably the CIA’s favourite, New York’s WNEW-TV - broadcast it on Tuesday, 26 November. This was not a bootleg job: The CIA had a version, it cannot be stressed enough, that, after an overt, authorized visit to the NPIC, it was content to see broadcast on American television screens. So what was in that first version? The most detailed account of the complete first version was furnished, after two fluffed earlier attempts, by Dan Rather on CBS-TV on the evening of Monday, 25 November. In this version, the pre-Elm Street sequence was present; no road sign interposed between camera and JFK at any point during the shooting sequence; Connally was hit by an independent shot; the presidential limousine did not stop; and JFK’s head went forward in response to the impact of the shot to his head. The last feature is crucial – the first version of the film thus united CIA, at a formal, official level, with those figures within the US establishment pushing the lone-assassin-no-conspiracy line. The version distributed by UPI-Newsfilm differed in only one major respect: the pre-Elm Street sequence was cut. With either version, McCone could speak unto Bundy, Alsop et al with the confidence of a man whose agency had delivered the filmic goods. Unfortunately for McCone, however, the most powerful element of the coup coalition had other plans. By no later than mid-morning on Tuesday, 26 November, the dissemination of the first version of the Zapruder fake was abruptly terminated and work already afoot to reassure the public of the continuing existence of the film, even as its contents were first deliberately obfuscated – recall the four Muchmore frames appearing under Zapruder’s name, both in afternoon papers of that day and in at least one the following day - then secretly changed, radically so, in the week(s) following. The most likely pretext for this cessation? “As the official solution to Dallas was being assembled over the first weekend after the assassination, one major snag required immediate attention. An inconvenient obstacle to Katzenbach’s November 24 imperative that the public be satisfied that Dallas was the act of a lone assassin was the fast-breaking news stories. The one that captured the most national attention was the televised news conference with Drs. Malcolm Perry and Kemp Clark at Dallas’s Parkland Memorial Hospital that took place several hours after Kennedy was pronounced dead, Gerald D. McKnight. Breach of Trust: How the Warren Commission Failed the Nation and Why (University of Kansas Press, 2005), p.166. So just how could the alleged assassin have shot the President in the front from behind? The revised (second) version of the Z fake was to provide an answer. In fairness to Horne, it is not inconceivable that work on this reworked version began – was even, perhaps, the purpose – of the clandestine visit to the NPIC on Sunday, 24 November. It is much more likely, however, that the work on the second version of the Z fake either commenced, or was completed, only after the suppression of the first. And so to the second of Horne’s flaws….
  9. I can't quite believe you took that stuff about "O J Groden" seriously enough to issue the above-disclaimer. Good grief! 😊
  10. You really haven't read any Doug Horne? Really? What do anti-alterationists do with their time? Swap gifs? Oh well, let's pretend you haven't. Here's part of his answer. I favour a very different one, which I'll come to in due course, but credit where credit's due, it's excellent and may well be entirely sufficient: Why Do So Many in the JFK Research Community Resist the Mounting Evidence that the Zapruder Film is an Altered Film? I do not include here, in this question, those who have written books defending the Zapruder film's authenticity; their obstinacy and closed-mindedness is related to ego, reputation, and to lifelong defense of their established turf. The old orthodoxy always resents the new paradigm that threatens established ways of thinking. There is a bigger problem within the JFK research community, and it revolves around the following question commonly posed by perplexed members of the old guard, first-generation JFK researchers, to whom the concept of an altered Zapruder film seems dangerous heresy. They usually ask, Why would anyone alter the film, and yet still leave evidence of conspiracy in the film? (By this they usually mean the timing problem in the extant film which makes the single bullet theory impossible; and the head snap of JFK's upper torso and head to the left-rear after frame 313 — which they equate with a shot, or shots, from the right front, and not from the Texas School Book Depository.) The answers to this valid question are clear to me: (1) those altering the Zapruder film at Hawkeyeworks on Sunday, November 24, 1963 were extremely pressed for time, and could only do so much in the twelve-to-fourteen hour period available to them; (2) the technology available with which to alter films in 1963 (both the traveling matte, and aerial imaging) had limitations — there was no digital CGI technology at that time — and therefore, I believe the forgers were limited to basic capabilities like blacking out the exit wound in the right-rear of JFK's head; painting a false exit wound on JFK's head on the top and right side of his skull (both of these seem to have been accomplished through aerial imaging — that is, animation cells overlaid in space on top of the projected images of the frames being altered, using a customized optical printer with an animation stand, and a process camera to re-photograph each self-matting, altered frame); and removing exit debris frames, and even the car stop, through step-printing. In my view, the alterations that were performed were aimed at quickly removing the most egregious evidence of shots from the front (namely, the exit debris leaving the skull toward the left rear, and the gaping exit wound which the Parkland Hospital treatment staff tells us was present in the right-rear of JFK's head). I believe that in their minds, the alterationists of 1963 were racing against the clock — they did not know what kind of investigation, either nationally or in Texas, would transpire, and they were trying to sanitize the film record as quickly as possible before some investigative body demanded to see the film evidence. There was not yet a Warren Commission the weekend following the assassination, and those who planned and executed the lethal crossfire in Dealey Plaza were intent upon removing as much of the evidence of it as possible, as quickly as possible. As I see it, they did not have time for perfection, or the technical ability to ensure perfection, in their sanitization of the Zapruder film. They did an imperfect job, the best they could in about 12-14 hours, which was all the time they had on Sunday, November 24, 1963, at Hawkeyeworks. Besides, there was no technology available in 1963 that could convincingly remove the head-snap from the Zapruder film; you could not animate JFK's entire body without it being readily detectable as a forgery, so the head-snap stayed in the film. (The head snap may even be an inadvertent result — an artifact of apparently rapid motion — caused by the optical removal of several exit debris frames from the film. When projected at normal speed at playback, any scene in a motion picture will appear to speed up if frames have been removed. Those altering the film may have believed it was imperative to remove the exit debris travelling through the air to the rear of President Kennedy, even if that did induce apparent motion in his body which made it appear as though he might have been shot from the front. The forgers may have had no choice, in this instance, but to live with the lesser of two evils. Large amounts of exit debris traveling toward the rear would have been unmistakable proof within the film of a fatal shot from the front; whereas a head snap is something whose causes could be debated endlessly, without any final resolution.) https://www.lewrockwell.com/2012/05/douglas-p-horne/the-two-npic-zapruder-film-events-signposts-pointing-to-the-filmsalteration/
  11. While Jeremy Bojczuk breaks in his all-new, O J Groden-approved footwear, it is time for the rest of us to take one small step for research, one giant leap out of group-think. In 1964, the task of the Warren Commission lawyers was to support the revised Z fake, first, by excluding those whose recall was deemed too dangerous and/or those whose profession and proximity (motorcycle outriders) conferred added, and decidedly unwelcome, authority to their observations; and then by browbeating the carefully willowed few in an attempt to make their testimony either conform, or merely pose no threat, to the fraudulent film. Subsequent defenders of the Z fake laboured under no such encumbrance, and the message could therefore be delivered much more simply: human memory fallible, film inerrant. But is this true? Is there a germane example that can be tested to see if this proposition is as reliable as it sounds, if only to some? There is. Consider the periodic recrudescence of claims, many following the alleged debut* of the Z fake on Geraldo Rivera’s ABC-TV’s late-night “Good Night America” on 6 March 1975, that the film was first shown in the days following JFK’s assassination. To venture in to print, online or in hard copy, with such a supposedly defective memory was to suffer, post-1975, the condescension of an outraged orthodoxy. The latter held that this was impossible: the Z film rights had been bought by Time-Life on Monday, 25 November 1963, and the film thereafter suppressed, supposedly on the grounds of taste. A film of the assassination had been shown within that rough timeframe, though, but it was Marie Muchmore’s, not Zapruder’s. What general impression did this film leave and how did it impact upon viewers? The best description of both was provided by Rick Friedman, in a piece for Editor & Publisher, which likely went to print on 26 or 27 November, for an edition dated 30 November 1963. According to Friedman, many viewers considered the assassination sequence they had just viewed as “too gruesome,” and had responded accordingly, with “at least one television station… besieged with protests after it had shown scenes of the President’s motorcade at the moment of the shooting.” For comparison purposes, here are the only two known contenders for the identity of that film. I have labelled them in accordance with current orthodoxy: Gruesome Notgruesome Very obviously, the two are labelled the wrong way round. The Zapruder film is gruesome, the Muchmore not. In 2007, a New York-based contributor to an online forum discussion recalled seeing, just before or after JFK’s funeral, a film of the assassination playing “over and over.” She was right, as a 26 November 1963 article, describing the first showing in the country of the film on WNEW-TV (at the unearthly time of 0046hrs), confirmed: “The film was shown in slow motion and also stopped at key points in the assassination. The scene was shown four times at different speeds and under different magnifications.” Strike 2 for human memory. On the same day, Tuesday, 26 November, the Milwaukee Journal named the film as Zapruder’s, adding this piece of confirmatory detail: “Mrs. Kennedy then jumps up and crawls across the back deck of the limousine, apparently seeking the aid of a secret service man who has been trotting behind the slowly moving vehicle. He jumps onto the car and shoves Mrs. Kennedy back into the seat. Then he orders the driver to speed to the hospital where the president died.” The film attributed to Muchmore, even the pre-splice black and white version, has never extended this far (though perhaps we ought to give the CIA a bit more time). One man in no doubt that Zapruder’s film (version 1) had been shown on US television – certainly by Metromedia’s stations, including the aforementioned WNEW & Los Angeles’ KTLA – was none other than Mark Lane. In the course of penning his lawyer’s brief for Oswald, printed in December 1963 by the National Guardian, but commenced on Tuesday, 26 November – he observed that a “motion picture taken of the President just before, during, and after the shooting, and demonstrated on television showed that the President was looking directly ahead when the first shot, which entered his throat was fired. A series of still pictures taken from the motion picture and published in Life magazine on Nov. 29 show exactly the same situation.” The orthodox history the Zapruder film is bunk. And it is time for Jeremy to pass me an enormous slice of mooncake. *At least two non-national TV showings preceded the television “debut”: at 5pm news feature on 14 February 1969, by KTLA-TV in Los Angeles; and in the late hours by WSNS-TV, Ch 44, Chicago, in 1970. The film was given to director Howie Samuelsohn by Penn Jones and later aired in syndication to Philadelphia, Detroit, Kansas City and St. Louis
  12. But Jeremy, where’s the usual lunar stuff? Most disappointing. There can be no doubt, though, that you stand upon the firmest of foundations. Indeed, on nothing less than the shoulders of a titan, the very photo-expert colossus who enabled Geraldo Rivera’s ABC-TV late-night “Good Night America” on 6 March 1975, and the man who is, unquestionably, the world’s leading Dealey Plaza mendicant. I refer, of course, to O J Groden, the man who single-handedly put the “ex” back into expert . It beggars belief, frankly, that anyone would want to take issue with such a pioneer. You should really try this for size. I have a sneaking feeling it will fit.
  13. Chris, 1) Yes 2) SOP - according to Newton T Fisher, a senior policeman from the city, even the DPD "had prepared two or three possible routes so as not to be wholly unprepared." Tea on the table.
  14. A brief sketch of what Team Dulles-Angleton would need to have done: Fixed upon the location & nature of the event Settled upon the murder method Established the desired narrative Checked the feasibility of using film to achieve or reinforce the desired narrative Ensured, particularly if niche, the requisite level of photographic-technical expertise Storyboarded, in Hitchcockian detail, the assassination sequence, with variants Despatched photogrammetrists to the assassination scene to obtain measurements, angles etc Amassed and/or procured a library of film footage of Dealey Plaza at the right time of year and in a variety of weather conditions for that time Flooded the assassination scene with camera-armed assets to maximise potentially usable photos and film Note that standard Secret Service practices furnished excellent cover for a number of the above-list. Though little publicized, by 1963 the SS routinely used photography when reconnoitring sites of future Presidential visits; and planted cameramen along routes during presidential parades, both domestically and abroad. (To give you some idea of how long the practice had been established, Scotland Yard undertook a thorough photographic survey of the White House and its environs before an anticipated British VIP visit in the late 1930s.) Thus key elements of the pre-assassination planning could be, and doubtless were, legitimately disguised as pure routine.
  15. Strawmen, guilt-by-association, more obsessing about the moon, the apparent disavowal of the rich history of film fakery, not to mention the rules governing physical evidence in court - oh, and the usual failure of elementary logic - all topped off by the abolition of the eyewitness in the practice of justice and law enforcement. Not bad for one post, Mr Flywheel. Now if the Z fake - and all its buttressing fake films - were genuine, we would expect to find all the closest eyewitnesses identified and questioned in a fair and proper manner. We would, wouldn't we? But because it is a fake, and the Warren Commission lawyers (Specter in particular) knew it was back in '64, the motorcyle escort closest to presidential limousine couldn't be called; and others attesting to the limo halt had to be led somewhat less than subtly. Sylvia Meagher captured this well back in 1967: Apparently the witnesses were mistaken in remembering that the car stopped; motion pictures, according to the Commission, contradicted them. Yet it seems clear from the way counsel led witnesses that the Commission had considerable resistance to inferences which might be drawn from evidence that the car had stopped at the first shot. “Stopped” was transformed into “seemed to stop” and then “into slowed down.” Such leading of witnesses, which would have been challenged in a courtroom, was facilitated by the Commission’s closed hearings… The films of the assassination have not been released for public showing, although it is possible to see the most important one, the Zapruder film…at the National Archives. That film does not seem to support the witnesses who said that the car stopped dead. This being so, it is baffling that counsel conducted the questioning somewhat improperly and why the Report presents this evidence with some lack of impartiality… Sylvia Meagher. Accessories After the Fact: The Warren Commission, The Authorities & The Report (NY: Vintage Books, June 1992 reprint), pp.4-5 PS The attempt to use still photos to buttress claims about the fake films is really quite funny. Keep going with that one.
  16. Any plot, no matter how small or uncomplicated, to kill a sitting President necessarily entails risk, the size of which self-evidently rises or falls based on such factors as, to name but three, location, timing and method. No plot poses greater challenges, in an era of mass camera and vehicular ownership, than one in which the deed is to be committed in a public space lacking minimal access control points. In making this choice, the three great risks to any plot – detection (of one or more element of the plot), prevention (the negation of the whole endeavour), and exposure (actual assassin and masterminds) – rise to their maximum. Yet this is precisely the choice made by the men who removed JFK. That decision, in and of itself, bespeaks of an astonishing confidence. In so choosing, all the usual types of pre-assassination risk reduction – compartmentalization, the use of cut-outs, distractions, and so on - had necessarily to reckon, to an unprecedented degree, with two necessities. First, witness minimization. And this is exactly what we find, from the timely misidentification of the presidential route on the front page of the Dallas Morning News’ assassination day edition, to the location of the assassination site, at the motorcade’s end (with the added bonus of the reduced witness perspective afforded by a sharp decline). Second, post-assassination information management. Here, we have been asked to believe, for the better part of 60 years, that the plotters had planned for the written word – think Hal Hendrix hitting the phones to brief fellow-hacks on the afternoon of November 22 – but had nothing whatever in place for the control of visual information. That veteran intelligence men with vast experience of controlling overseas coup narratives – in Iran, for example, where it was done largely through the Associated Press – either ignored or seriously underestimated, in their pre-coup planning, the potential threat of the photograph and the film. More, that when they belatedly woke up to that threat, the best they could come up with was to prevail upon the Lucepress, not to destroy it, but merely to furnish cover for the Zapruder film’s suppression. Is that really plausible?
  17. Boyczuk takes the case Oh dear, a lawyer who doesn’t read. Still, as Smashie and Nicey, two legendary British disc-jockeys, regularly reminded listeners, “charidee” must always be our watchword. In that spirit, I’m prepared to delete this reply just as soon as you’ve read post twelve in this thread. But only upon payment of a seven-cent nickel.
  18. The problem here, Chris, is that you're approaching history the wrong way round, viewing it backwards instead of forwards. Yes, the film's existence was publicized, but the American people initially had no confirmation of the precise content of the Zapruder film until frames were actually printed. Could a substitution have been contemplated - or even attempted? The very thought seems preposterous. But yet it's true. It happened. For the curious fact is that the first four frames to appear in US newspapers, purporting to be from the Zapruder film, are to be found in a few US afternoon newspapers - the Philadelphia Daily News and the Orlando Evening Star, to name but two - on 26 November, prior to the complete nationwide distribution of Life magazine's edition dated 29 November. And they weren't from Zapruder's film, but rather the film attributed to Mary Muchmore, the lady who denied to the FBI that she had shot any footage of the assassination. As for Life's failure to exploit its purchase of Z fake film rights, David Lifton's essay Pig on a Leash remains unimprovable: “In short, it would appear that Life behaved in a manner that what was most unusual, and peculiar for an institution in a capitalist economy: It laid out the equivalent of some $900,000 for a literary asset and then failed to exploit that asset…Life magazine is not an eleemosynary institution” (p.314)*. He returned to the same theme later in the essay: “Life seemed to behave in a most extraordinary way: It failed to recoup its investment” (p.351). He went on to observe that even though “social mores were different in 1963, human nature does not change. Life had an extraordinary property – a motion picture film, yet, aside from the publication of a select number of frames, it acted to keep it off the market” (pp.351-2)*. * Page references from Jim Fetzer (ed.) The Great Zapruder Film Hoax: Deceit and Deception in the Death of JFK (Chicago: Catfeet Press, 2003).
  19. Let me see if I can help your ailing powers of elementary reasoning. If the Dulles-Angleton faction didn't destroy the Z fake, then we are left with a finite number of options. The most obvious one is because it served their purposes - but only after tweaking and refinements. All of the latter had to be undertaken, mind, within a framework that preserved the exculpation of the Secret Service, their primary proxy in the coup. By the way, the first version of the fake included footage of the left turn. It's presence is attested to in such diverse sources as, to name but three, Dan Rather's four (minimum) descriptions of the film ,on 25 November 1963, to CBS radio and TV audiences; Arlen Specter's questioning of Kellerman on 9 March 1964 (see 2H91-92); and in the AP version of the Warren Report published in September 1964 (try page 41: "The [frame] numbers continue in sequence as Zapruder filmed the Presidential limousine as it came round the corner and proceeded down Elm..."). Mark Lane noted this as long ago as Rush To Judgment in 1966 - anti-alterationists really do need to get up to speed.
  20. You make some interesting points, none of which I agree with. The CIA didn't always act to further the interests of its businesses and industries. Far from it. In the cases of, most obviously, the USSR, Eastern Europe and China (post-1949), the agency's extensive programmes of covert action (assassination and sabotage, to be specific) were designed to achieve precisely the opposite - they sought to close markets to Western countries, the better to starve the Communist "beast." Then there is the case of Cuba which, after the near-extirpation of the country's Communist Party & trade union leadership in the late 1940s, finds the CIA throwing its weight behind Castro's July 25 movement, subsequently destroying extensive US holdings and investments in the country in preference to destroying detente & bringing the Cold War 90 miles off America's shores. This proved, as intended, a massive boon to the US' military and intelligence "communities" & their suppliers, but not, to name but two, its American sugar and beef producers. As for the CIA and the Lucepress, the limited revolt of the latter doesn't occur until US bombers begin striking over the Vietnam border into China in late '65 or early '66. Finally, I really don't believe Helms represented any sort of impediment to Dulles and Angleton - Helms' job was to shield and facilitate them, not impair. McCone, ghastly though he unquestionably proved*, was an irrelevance. *JFK, in a phone call to RFK in March 1963, dismissed McCone as an arsehole and regretted his appointment.
  21. It has been suggested to me, decidedly tongue-in-cheek, that Dulles & Angleton failed to respond to news of the Z film's existence because they were paralyzed by grief and remorse. This is so outlandish that I find this explanation to be as persuasive as any other yet offered, and thus conclude that the deadly duo could have acted but chose not to. Which then begs the question - why? Was it because the CIA created the film or merely recognized its potential utility? For the purpose of argument, I'll here the assume latter. So, what benefits did the film, suitably manipulated, offer to the plotters? Could it be used to neutralise significant and unwelcome facts observed and recalled by eyewitnesses? I offer two examples of how the Z fake sought to quash corroborated eyewitness testimony which called into question our understanding of the assassination sequence, timings, and events. 1) The presidential limousine in the left lane of Elm Street (and stopping) From in front: i. Railway worker Roy Skelton, who viewed the assassination from the overpass: “then the car [the presidential limousine – PR] got in the right hand lane,” 19WCH496. ii. Policeman J.W. Foster, again situated on the overpass: “immediately after President Kennedy was struck…the car in which he was riding pulled to the curb,” Warren Commission Document 897, pp.20-21. From side on, iii) to the right of the limousine, iv) to the left of it: iii. Policeman James Chaney and other unnamed Dallas officers, as related by fellow motorcycle outrider, Marrion L. Baker: “I talked to Jim Chaney…during the time that the Secret Service men were trying to get into the car…from the time the first shot rang out, the car stopped completely, pulled to the left and stopped…I heard several of them say that, Mr. Truly he was standing out there, he said it stopped. Several officers said it stopped completely,” 3WCH265. iv. Jean Hill: “Murder Charge Lodged,” Dallas Times Herald, 23 November 1963, p.8: “The President passed directly in front of us on our side of the street,” Mrs. Hill said. From the rear: v. TSBD employee Mrs. Donald Baker (Virgie Rachley at time of shooting): Mrs. Baker told Warren Commission attorney Wesley Liebeler that the stray bullet struck the middle of the south-most lane on Elm Street just behind the presidential limousine, 7WCH510: [Mr. LIEBELER. How close to the curb on Elm Street was this thing you saw (<p509 end; p.510 begins>) hit; do you remember? It would have been on the curb side near the side away from the Texas School Book Depository Building on the opposite side of the street; is that right? Mrs. BAKER. Yes. Mr. LIEBELER. How close to the opposite curb do you think it was? Mrs. BAKER. It was approximately in the middle of the lane I couldn't be quite sure, but I thought it was in the middle or somewhere along in there could even be wrong about that but I could have sworn it that day. Mr. LIEBELER. You thought it was sort of toward the middle of the lane? Mrs. BAKER. Toward the middle of the lane. Mr. LIEBELER. Of the left-hand lane going toward the underpass; is that correct? Mrs. BAKER. Yes. vi. TSBD supervisor & board member Roy Truly, who watched the assassination from in front of the TSBD: “I saw the President’s car swerve to the left and stop somewheres down in this area…” 3WCH221. 2) The length of the pause on Elm Street and Kellerman's post-shooting action i) Jack Bell, A Shining Light Goes Out, AP, 18 November 1964: But at almost that instant, a secret service man, riding in the front seat of the presidential limousine, stood up, phone in hand, and waved the preceding police cruiser on. ii) S. M. Holland, responding to questions from Mark Lane, as reproduced on the LP The Controversy, 1967: Q: What were the secret service men in the front of the car doing when this happened? A: Well, he was standing up with his machine gun, pointed in the direction that I saw the smoke come from, and, er, heard the shot come from. Q: And which way did he look? A: He was standing up with a sub-machine gun pointed in the direction of the picket fence. iii) Hugh Betzner, Jr.'s affadavit, 22 November 1963: "I also saw a man in either the President's car or the car behind his and someone down in one of those cars pull out what looked like a rifle." Hugh Betzner, Jr.'s affadavit, 22 November 1963
  22. This transcript is from video tape of the live broadcast seen nationwide on the ABC network at about 2:10pm CST, November 22, 1963. The interviewer, seated on the left, is WFAA-TV program director Jay Watson. On the right, with his hat on the desk, is Abraham Zapruder. WATSON: A gentleman just walked in our studio that I am meeting for the first time as well as you, this is WFAA-TV in Dallas, Texas. May I have your name please, sir? ZAPRUDER: My name is Abraham Zapruder. WATSON: Mr. Zapruda? ZAPRUDER: Zapruder, yes sir. WATSON: Zapruda. And would you tell us your story please, sir? ZAPRUDER: I got out in, uh, about a half-hour earlier to get a good spot to shoot some pictures. And I found a spot, one of these concrete blocks they have down near that park, near the underpass. And I got on top there, there was another girl from my office, she was right behind me. And as I was shooting, as the President was coming down from Houston Street making his turn, it was about a half-way down there, I heard a shot, and he slumped to the side, like this. Then I heard another shot or two, I couldn't say it was one or two, and I saw his head practically open up, all blood and everything, and I kept on shooting. That's about all, I'm just sick, I can't… WATSON: I think that pretty well expresses the entire feelings of the whole world. ZAPRUDER: Terrible, terrible. WATSON: You have the film in your camera, we'll try to get… ZAPRUDER: Yes, I brought it on the studio, now. WATSON: …we'll try to get that processed and have it as soon as possible. WFAA then shows a video tape of the hearse with Kennedy's body leaving the Parkland Hospital driveway. Watson next shows a photograph of the Texas School Book Depository and points to the sixth floor window. http://www.jfk-info.com/wfaa-tv.htm
  23. I enjoy a cop-out as much as the next man. And, boy, what a cop-out. It’s almost, well, lawerly, and certainly one for the collection. Mutually authenticating film is an interesting gambit, but one that rather smacks of desperation, for each link in the chain must hold – and, plainly, they don’t, for film, as with any other physical evidence, stands or falls by such mundane considerations as chain of custody, corroboration (both by its taker and other eyewitness testimony), absence of evidence of alteration and so on and so forth. With all this in mind, let’s briefly revisit the Z fake. Let’s start with its chain of custody. It’s nothing short of a nightmare – so bad, indeed, that proponents of its authenticity are obliged to more or less ignore, for example, the rigorously compartmentalised NPIC viewings, events so sensitive that the high-powered CIA unit backing Clay Shaw chose to withhold all knowledge of them from the latter’s defence team – and the judge. Corroboration by its alleged taker? Zapruder is on record stating that he filmed the presidential limousine rounding the turn from Houston on to Elm; that the shooting occurred at a different point on Elm than that depicted in the black and white stills he was shown by the Warren Commission; and that frames were missing even from the truncated version he was presented with at the Clay Shaw trial. As for events not present in the Z fake attested to by eyewitnesses to the assassination, two will suffice – there’s not a sign of the presidential limousine pulling to the left (attested to by witnesses from all four points of the compass) or stopping completely (even more eyewitnesses). One could drone on in this vein for some time, but the point is made: Z fake compatibility with other films was only achieved by, at bare minimum, extensive editing. Mutually authenticating? My foot. PS I'm delighted to learn that Jonathan Cohen has cleared up the Babushka lady mystery .
  24. Let’s pretend for one moment that the Z fake really was the proof they hadn’t counted on and really did pose the threat to the conspirators which proponents of its authenticity have long insisted. Why, then, did Dulles and Angleton not act promptly to destroy it? Poor pre-planning? Inability to respond quickly enough? Intellectual integrity? Chivalry? “Company” ethics? An exaggerated concern for property rights? Lack of an “in” with Luce’s media empire? The existence of multiple copies? Lack of imagination? (Couldn’t concoct a story explaining the destruction of the above…) A concern not to push absurdity too far? An absence of technical resources? A dearth of competent personnel? The above list is manifestly incomplete, but typed with a straight(-ish) face throughout. I urge potential contributors not to abjure the rich satirical potential the subject offers.
  25. Er, so why didn’t they? You are going to explain this, aren’t you? For decades now, I’ve tried to imagine the conversation between Dulles and Angleton on precisely this issue. “Jim,” solemnly intones Dulles as he extracts the pipe responsible for billowing that famous smoke from behind the picket fence, “we may have successfully orchestrated the murder of the 35th President in broad daylight on an American street - and then had the patsy bumped off in a police station on live TV - but we have a problem, a seemingly insurmountable one.” “And what’s that boss?” Angleton idly inquires while doodling a vastly elaborate diagram directly linking Harold Wilson’s family tree to the foundation of the Cheka and the origins of the Soviet space programme. Dulles shifts uneasily in his chair and begins to sweat. “Some random, socially unconnected nut with a home movie camera filmed the whole damn thing. Our nice little story about the assassin-from-the-rear is blown wide open. What on earth are we doing to do?” Angleton lights his fourth cigarette since the commencement of Dulles’ statement of the problem. “Nothing, boss, the film’s been bought by Luce so there’s no way we can get access to it and in any case, the agency exists to protect and extend the rights of major domestic corporations, not infringe them. More, the agency lacks both the resources and the personnel to contemplate any actions. So that’s that, we can only keep our fingers crossed.” Dulles relights his pipe. “You’re damn right, Jim, we’re truly powerless to act.” Absurd? Absolutely, but that's precisely what we have been asked to believe for over six decades by the proponents of the Z fake's authenticity.
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