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The Anatomy of an Assassination Rifle

John Ritchson

© Tuesday, February 03, 2004

Independent Report on the Physical Evidence by John Ritchson

At approximately 12:30 pm., on a bright and beautiful day on Elm Street, downtown Dallas, Texas, in a place known as Dealey Plaza a series of gunshots were fired at a motorcade containing John Fitzgerald Kennedy, with one shot, aimed with deadly precision, striking and killing the 35th president of the United States.

Let me state right from the start that a proper "Independent" forensic examination of the physical evidence in this case, including the "Rifle" has yet to be conducted, nor does such likelihood seem forthcoming in the near future at least. Critics will argue this will simply be another report like all of the others based on circumstantial, anecdotal, innuendo, etc. However, it is my intent to expose the reader to an alternate point of view based upon the general conclusions that can be derived from such evidence. The success or failure of such an endeavor lies entirely with me. However, it is my view that any reader who truly treats the following thesis with the objectivity I believe it deserves will arrive at one and only one inescapable conclusion: Lee Harvey Oswald did not kill President Kennedy in the manner alleged by the Warren Commission or any other subsequent official body to date.

The following is my report on the alleged assassination weapon based in part on the 1984 Life Magazine color photo of the alleged murder weapon and other physical evidence shot by award winning photographer, Mike O'Neil, as well as material collected and evaluated by a number of other assassination researchers, as well as my own investigations into the matter examining and evaluating evidence submitted by the F.B.I. to the Warren Commission from whom it is alleged, proves a forensic connection to the alleged assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald.

This Report is also based upon a compilation of a number of former articles which I have written over the years and thus readers may notice some redundancy which I will attempt to moderate as much as possible. I will also credit sources and contributors but assume full responsibility for content, errors, and acts of omission which may occur.

In any study such as this, I think it important to explore the historical context of the subject as well as the many controversies and peripheral aspects that go along with it in order to gain a more complete understanding of my essential thesis; that Lee Harvey Oswald could not and did not shoot and kill the 35th president of the United States in the manner alleged by the Warren Commission Report.

To answer from the very beginning the question of "Possibility" that I'm certain will be raised by critics: "Was it at least possible for Lee Oswald to affect this murder?" If he had been a trained and experienced expert shot who had killed men in combat; if he had been fortunate enough to acquire a Carcano rifle that was well made, and if it had a good, solid action, and if it had a smooth receiver, and if it had a well made barrel, properly finished and crowned, and if it possessed an accurate sighted-in scope with good optics, and if he had ammunition properly loaded and sized for that rifle, and if the terminal ballistic characteristics of his alleged shots were consistent with having been fired from the rear then I would have to say "YES" he could have done the job. "BUT", it's in the addressing of all of those "IFs" that is the purpose of this report.

My thanks to researcher, Walt Cakebread for providing me with an excellent enlargement of this rather revealing piece of evidence - The O'Neil Photo - (1) for evidence it most certainly is. The photograph purports to show items alleged to be relevant to the JFK assassination which the FBIs forensic laboratory duly swore into evidence pursuant to the Warren Commission's investigation into the matter.

[NOTE:] [After consulting with various experts on Carcano rifles including reading material from Richard Hobbs who is considered one of the top people in this area, I have concluded that the rifle depicted in Mike O'Neil's Life photo, and identified as CE-139, Serial # C2766, is in fact a very rare model known as a Moschettieri del Duce Carcano which is a ceremonial rifle of Mussolini's Guard, of which only a few hundred were ever made. I can't imagine such a weapon would ever turn up as part of a cheap batch of surplus Carcanos being offered for sale by a sporting goods store in Chicago for less than $25.00. Far more likely is the probability that it was in fact a battlefield trophy which hung on someone's wall

until such a time as it turned up as evidence in the JFK case.]

In 1984, Mike O'Neil, an award winning photo-journalist, working for Life Magazine, one of the world's premiere photo-journals, was given permission to photograph the alleged evidence connecting LHO to the assassination of JFK. At the time his intent was to simply take the best picture he could, to preserve for posterity, an accurate photo-record of the evidence. He had no other agenda. He had no idea that years later, the photo would provide a major piece of exculpatory evidence that would cast doubt upon the guilt of LHO as well as doubt upon the accuracy of the WCR. He simply took the best picture he could. This is the way the situation would remain until some 12 years later when researcher, Walt Cakebread, who was engaged in a debate over the issue of the side mounted sling-swivel and was seeking my opinion, sent me a hard-copy of Mike O'Neil's photo. Upon examination of the photo, I noticed that the rifle depicted did not look like any of the other photos of C 2766 I had ever seen and informed Walt of this fact. After checking through the literature and photos, we jointly came to the conclusion that the rifle depicted was not the same rifle as other rifle photos depicted. Rather, I postulated at the time that it could be a ceremonial rifle of some sort and that further investigation was warranted.

Unknown to me at the time, Walt Cakebread was in contact with Richard Hobbs, who is considered by many in this business, as one of the world's foremost authorities on the Carcano rifle. After carefully

studying Walt's evidence as well as additional evidence from other sources, Hobbs posted his conclusions on Carcano Historian, Alexander Eichener's website.

While seeking additional information on the possibility that we were in fact dealing with a ceremonial rifle I went to Eichener's website to see if I could get a lead on things and while there, I discovered

that Hobbs's conclusion was that the rifle was in fact a Moschettieri del Duce Carcano of Mussolini's Guardia del Duce or "Black Guard" and personal Honor Guard. He also declared that such a rifle was a very rare bird indeed, with only some 200 units ever being made. Based upon this new and explosive information, I concluded that there was no way that such a rifle would ever turn up as part of a cheap consignment of surplus Carcano field rifles being sold out of a Chicago sporting goods store. Rather, based upon my own experience in military service, I postulated that this rifle could very well have been a battlefield trophy that was picked up during WWII after the invasion of Italy, and brought back to the States after the war where it remained part of someone's collection until turning up in Dallas in 1963.

The question then became, who would have been in a position to acquire this rifle, in that location, within that time-frame and then transport it back to the states as a trophy rifle? Also, who would have been in a position to insert that rifle into the JFK scenario in such a manner as to implicate LHO? I decided to pursue an investigation based upon this notion. After nearly 2 years, I finally have acquired what I believe is sufficient evidence, albeit circumstantial that provides for a plausible perpetrator.

My information comes through another researcher who has contacted me privately and whose name I do not as yet have permission to publish. There was in fact, a high ranking field officer who was in a position

to do everything I have postulated, and who under the circumstances of acquiring a very rare and very valuable war-trophy would have had motive as well as means and opportunity.

According to the US Army's Military History Institute at Carlisle, PA., the officer in question served in the US Army between the years 1931 and 1961 and during WWII commanded the allies largest unit

of special forces commandos in the Italian theater during Operation Overlord, a brigade sized unit of over 2,000 battle hardened men who would form the spearhead of the Allies landing operations from Salerno

to Anzio, and was known as the 1st Special Service Force. This would have put the commander of this unit in the unique position after Anzio to receive the surrender of Mussolini's Guardia del Duce which was headquartered in Rome, and because they were a ceremonial unit and not a combat unit would have likely surrendered to the first Allied troops to enter the city, which most likely would have been elements from the 1st Special Service Force, which would also have taken control of the ceremonial rifles.

On 11/22/63 this high ranking officer was on an airplane when it was announced that JFK had been shot, and witnesses remembered that he moved around the plane introducing himself to the other passengers and asking them to remember that he was with them at that point in time.

Some time after the assassination he was to travel to Mexico and spend 30 days vacationing with one of the Hunt brothers of Dallas, a vacation that was possibly arranged by Filipe Santiago whose family

was and remains a political force in Mexico, with interests and connections extending to Cuba and Central America.

That this Career officer was a rabid ultra-right winger is exemplified be his arrest in 1972 for breaking a curfew and attending a prayer vigil for George Wallace.

If you haven't figured out yet who it is I'm referring to, it was the very same General Irwin Walker that LHO was accused of trying to assassinate prior to his alleged shooting of JFK. Walker was in all of the right places at all of the right times, and had the power, means and opportunity if not the clear motive to carry out the acquisition and the subsequent planting of the Moschettieri del Duce Carcano in the JFK crime scene.

This little historical dissertation becomes significant in the fact that if such an event actually occurred then the alleged kill-shot weapon amongst other things would have been in even poorer condition from the standpoint of actually shooting to hit something. Honor Guard weapons are constructed for looks not functionality and suffer a great deal of abuse during the course of their existence.

"NOW" back to THE RIFLE

Among these items shown is a rifle, identified as a M38 6.5x52mm Mannlicher Carcano rifle Serial # C2766, and designated Warren Commission Exhibit CE-139. (2) The alleged weapon/s entered into evidence was/were a Model 91/38 Fucile Corto 6.5x52 Carcano C2766 Stock # Unknown, manufactured at the Terni arsenal rifle Serial # C2766, and designated Warren Commission Exhibit CE-139. -“‘‹‰‡-“‘‹‰‡‘@ is by the way, pretty much "Standard Operating Procedure" for gun makers worldwide. However, as tools cut they get dull and that fact starts to change the cutting characteristics of the tools themselves including the finishing hones which wear down. It is this situation that results in the wide variances found in the barrel and groove diameters of Carcano rifles and which is why it is strongly recommended that one "Slugs" (to get an exact bore diameter) the barrel before loading for this rifle. Since in war, time is of the essence and production just can't shut down any old time, so the machinists can't shut down production to retool, the machinist simply applies more pressure to the tools, causing the increasingly dull and worn tools to begin to "Hog" the steel which is actually gouging or tearing out the metal rather than cutting it. After a certain number, depending upon the quality of the tools and machinist, the successive barrels will turn out over-bored and grooved with an increasingly rougher finish. The same will be true for the actions, bolt and receiver, springs, threads, etc.

In an attempt to moderate this situation, the Italians compensated by sizing their bullets to a somewhat larger .2655"-.266" - even as much as .267+ inches, which due to the redundancies in manufacturing could "safely" be fired through the better made barrels of the correct sizing and tolerances, yet also function "effectively" through the larger, rougher barrels which were and are the majority of “War-Time” M38 Carcano barrels made. However, upon occasion, to the detriment of the Italian soldier unlucky enough to possess a Carcano rifle with a properly made "First-Run" barrel, the oversized bullet could cause excessive chamber pressure resulting in catastrophic failure of the weapon, and more than a few would find the “Action" in their face instead of at the enemy; while the equally unlucky soldier fielding a grossly oversized Carcano barrel would find out that the safest person on the battlefield was his target.

Now to the point of this little dissertation: If one sizes their bullets to the properly produced ideal 6.5mm barrel you will find the .264" inch bullet will be nearly the ideal size; e. g. .255905" inches + .00950" inch groove to groove diameter to allow for the "Average" barrel redundancy = .265405" inches... minus the .0001" inch average redundancy allowable for a properly made bullet = .264405" inches yielding a total average redundancy of .0015" inches between barrel and bullet. Rounded out to 3 places this gives a nominal bullet diameter of .264" inches. As a matter of fact, the 6.5x55mm Swedish Mauser loaded with the .264" inch bullet is among the world's most accurate rifles, bar-none.

Now, it is certainly possible to fire much larger bullets in M38 Carcano rifles with the much larger bore and groove diameters, in fact that is one of the reasons for "Slugging" the bore in the first place; to accurately match bullet to bore. However, these rifle barrels can no longer accurately be referred to as "6.5mm" barrels. In fact I have seen Carcano bullets with a base diameter of .269" inches loaded for a rifle bore of .270" which now places it in the .270 caliber or 6.9-7mm caliber. .264 bullets loaded into such a rifle would go about anywhere, except its intended target.] In other words, a properly made bullet cannot be accurately fired from most any wartime M38 Carcano rifle.

The rifle as depicted, based upon the bolt sleeve/safety, cocking cam, and firing pin nut, is clearly an Italian made Mannlicher Carcano rifle, serial #C2766. There is no evidence of any other identifiers,

inspectors/proof marks on the rifle as depicted. (3) There is however, some proof marks on the barrel just forward of the receiver ring that exist in some photos but are either missing or altered in others which is what raises the issue of forgery. Also, in at least one photo I've examined there are clearly cuts in the barrel itself at the point where it joins to the receiver ring that are consistent with a toothed wrench having been applied to remove or tighten the barrel. There appears to be a gas-vent hole on the receiver ring just behind the serial number that I find somewhat remarkable due to the fact that it is a feature not always present on a Carcano rifle. (It should be noted at this point that there is at least one assertion that this feature is a tapped, threaded, set-screw hole designed to secure to rifle barrel to the receiver, and another assertion that this feature is simply a deep set proof-mark; assertions that I soundly reject and frankly, consider absurd as there also appears to be a pattern of discoloration just above this gas-vent indicative of gas-propellant blow-by.) This is significant as the presence of this gas-vent indicates the rifle was built to accommodate a left- handed shooter. Noteworthy is the fact that due to the gas port on the left side of receiver ring, firing this rifle from the right shoulder would be quite hazardous, exposing the shooter to hot propellant gas in the event of any gas blow-by, and/or cartridge failure and primer rupture which are fairly common to old leaky, sloppy bolt action rifles. Also, in evidence regarding this gas-vent is the presence of a slight defect and discoloration near the top of the receiver ring indicative of excessive breech pressure or a sloppy bolt action. The presence of the left leaning off-set rifle scope would render left handed firing highly impractical as would attempting to use the iron sights be from the right handed position if it becomes necessary to "Lead" a moving object coming from the left across the field of fire. The stock is black with an almost gun-metal hue in color, the same as the receiver and scope, which is a blue so dark as to be for all practical purposes, black. The upper mounted sling swivel is clearly side-mounted and the rear position of the sling indicates a corresponding side-mount near the stock-butt. (It should be noted at this point that several photos purporting to show Lee Harvey Oswald holding the rifle in question clearly shows "Bottom" mounted sling-swivels of a type different than the sling-swivels shown in Mike O'Neil's Photo.) (4) The color of the stock and the presence of the side mounted sling swivels, and the presence of the gas-vent renders this weapon somewhat unique as far as Carcano rifles go, due to the fact that it is clearly not a regular military surplus rifle of that type. I can only guess as to its origin, but this rifle appears to be more for ceremonial use rather than being a field weapon. The sling itself tends to bear out this fact as it is clearly a ceremonial sling and not a field sling

common to surplus military rifles.

Finally, according to experts at Edgewood Arsenal, the rifle was unfit to fire, and had to be reworked by a gunsmith (5) who noted the condition of the action to be so poor and corroded as to constitute a hazard, noting especially that the firing-pin was worn out and required replacing as well as the scope being misaligned to the point of uselessness. Even after retro-fitting the rifle, none of the Edgewood experts were able to successfully duplicate LHO's alleged shooting feat with that rifle. The Edgewood Report in its entirety (6) can be purchased from the National Archives for about $100.00. (It should be noted at this point that Carlos Norman (Gunny) Hathock II who was at the time, chief instructor of the U.S. Marine Corps Sniper's School at Quantico, Virginia, conducted a series of tests using the best Carcanos he could acquire and the best shooters in the world and also failed to duplicate LHO's alleged shooting feat.) (7)

Since the writing of this initial article, addition information has come to light:

Researcher, Jerry McLeer has proven using comparative photos that the rifle presently in the National Archives and bearing the Serial Number C2766 is not the same rifle that was photographed by Mike O'Neil and (8) is the subject of this report. Apparently, the people in charge of the evidence have realized the ramifications of presenting a Moschettieri del Duce Carcano as the weapon that killed JFK. (Note:) I have since published an article on the technique of forging a weapon after the manner I believe that was done in this case. All of this of course is in addition to the 3 different Carcanos that were discovered and cataloged by researcher, Jack White whose work in this matter I have independently verified.

Anatomy of a Forgery

Since the issue of multiple Rifles plays central to the theme, I think it necessary to explore the process for the reader's edification, since if the issue of the planted Moschettieri del Duce Carcano if true would have necessitated an immediate replacement that could be at least test-fired. Since Edgewood reported the rifle to be in very poor condition and had to be re-worked prior to any ballistic tests, reason dictates that the forgery had to have occurred elsewhere. There was only one other agency with complete, unbridled access to the physical evidence.

The first operation in forging serial numbers is to fashion a set of metal stamps that exactly resemble the original stamps by either working off of photos or even better, taking a wax print of the original serial numbers and producing from it a metal-mold using the Lost Wax Process. That the forgers did not do this indicated to me that they were pressed for time and left out some critical steps, or they were simply incompetent, take your pick. (9)

Next, the barrel to be altered must be unscrewed from the receiver and pre-heated in a forge to a uniform temperature above the temperature needed to draw the barrel's temper, known as the annealation point in

which the barrel just begins to glow red in a dark room. This is done to soften the metal, making it more pliable in order insure uniformity in the subsequent operations. I will explain later how I know this step was not done by the forgers. (10)

The next step involves taking the barrel which is now at the annealing temperture and adding to the barrel's origional serial numbers, sufficient metal as to completely fill in the characters, usually by welding a bead across the origional characters using steel of the same metallurgical properties as the barrel steel. I found that 7018 low hydrogen welding rod is compatible to most barrel steel, but I believe the forgers in this case used a mild-steel general purpose rod such as 7014 which can cause problems which I will expand upon later. This is the step at which the forgers started. An even better method involves using a rare gas heli-arc welder and using rod fashioned from rifle barrel steel as a filler which makes the forgery even more difficult to detect.

After the now welded barrel has been allowed to slowly cool in a pre-heated kiln to preserve the annealation, it is placed on a lathe and turned down until the weld has been feathered out of the barrel, leaving a now pristine barrel. The forgers jumped the cool-down step and simply removed the weld.

Finally, the annealed pristine barrel is restamped with the new serial numbers and reheated up to the temper point, and then quenched in such a way as to properly draw the barrel's temper to insure a uniform meld all the way around. I believe the forgers left out this step as well.

If these steps are not closely followed, any barrel so altered will show evidence of that fact in the form of pitting, and hard spots due to the uneven thermodynamic conditions the barrel will be exposed to. Also, there will be discoloration and a clear line of demarcation between the area welded and the rest of the barrel, Now, look at the bottom of the letter, [C] and the numerals, [2], and [7] on the current archive photos. You will see defects present whereby the pitting and hard spots prevented the metal stamps from making a clean imprint on the barrel that does not exist on the O'Neil Photo. This proves the forgers did not anneal the rifle barrel prior to welding the bead on it. Also, the shine of reflected light off of this area of the rifle's barrel in the archive photo indicates that the barrel was not properly blued or anodized

subsequent to the forgery. [Combat weapons are not supposed to reflect light in this manner.]

I should add that Edgewood reported the rifle unfit to fire citing a rusted out action and worn firing pin giving rise to the suspicion that CE-139 was incapable of being fired, or at the very least, unsafe. This

being the case, then it should not be surprising that the FBI shooters would balk at firing this weapon. Also, this all tends to reinforce the contention that CE-139 was in fact, a battlefield trophy that hung on

someone's wall prior to it being possibly "planted" at the TSBD.

Since the FBI has never produced any of the comparison bullets that they alleged were fired in order to forensically connect CE-139 to CE-399 and the bullet fragments, nor has the adjoining ballistic data

been published for the purposes of peer-review, I believe that in fact no such tests were conducted nor was CE-139 test fired prior to its being reworked by a gunsmith at Edgewood. The implications here should be fairly obvious: The weapon was "UNFIT" to fire.

[Note:] The reasons for the failure of the FBI to test, above and beyond the rifle defects, becomes rather obvious when one takes into account the fact that the intact bullet recovered at Parkland Hospital and entered into evidence as a Western made 6.5mm Mannlicher Carcano bullet and forensically connected to the alleged murder weapon and designated Warren Commission Exhibit 399 is actually a bullet with 6 lands and grooves which was fired through a barrel with a 1-7 1/2 inch twist and not a bullet with 4 lands and grooves that was fired through a barrel with a 1-8 1/2 inch twist which is what one would expect to find in a bullet that was fired through any M38 Carcano rifle. (11)

There is no dispute that records show an M38 6.5x52mm Mannlicher Carcano carbine was ordered from Klein's Sporting Goods by an A.. Hidell located at a post office box in Dallas. However, the FBI entered

into evidence a Carcano rifle,identified by serial# C2766 and alleged to have been the rifle purchased by LHO under the alias Hidell,and used to kill JFK which is clearly not a carbine with a 17.5" barrel and

an overall length of 36".The actual rifle in evidence is a Carcano-short rifle with a 21.5+ inch barrel and an overall length of over 40 inches.This is the point where the rifle as evidence inculpable to LHO

begins to unravel.

Kleins sold its rifles as being in good serviceable condition,ready to shoot.However the rifle entered into evidence was by the FBIs own admission,unservicable requiring reworking by a gunsmith before it would be fit to fire during ballistic testing.FBI testimony revealed the rifle to have had a faulty firing pin and a faulty scope mount rendering it useless and hazardous until repaired yet offered no explanation for the dichotomy between the alleged shooting by LHO and the actual condition of the rifle.

The ramifications of multiple Carcanos being entered into evidence renders suspect any official forensic report. Therefore, I think it important that characteristics of the M38 Carcano be explored in general and C2766 in particular. The following is what some world-class experts in the field of firearms have to say on the M38 Carcano rifle in general: (12)

Due to the wide variations in groove diameters which exist in these surplus military rifles, we suggest you proceed with extreme caution when loading for this weapon as gas blow-by due to improper bullet sizing can lead to catastrophic failure. (Lyman Gun-Sight Company)

The Action of the 6.5mm Carcano is sloppy, and lacks the margin of safety of the better military actions; the finish of the rifle is crude. Scope mounting is difficult and essentially not worth the effort.

(Hornady Manufacturing Company)

The wide variations in bore and groove size of the 6.5mm Carcano Rifle leaves much to be desired in the field of accuracy. (Sierra Bullets)

Due to the many deficiencies observed in this (6.5mm Carcano)weapon, and in the interests of public safety, the Speer Company will not include re-loading data for this caliber in its manuals.

(Vernon Speer,Speer Re-Loading Company)

The 6.5mm Carcano is among the least desirable military bolt-actions.

(Frank de Haas) Re: war-time production M38s.

You would have to spend between $1,500.00 and $2,500.00 dollars to sporterize a 6.5mm Carcano rifle and you would still be left with a $100.00 dollar weapon.

(Alan Horst, Montana Gun Works)

There are FBI reports dated 11 /23 /63 that report FBI technicians comparing bullets fired from the Carcano with bullets fragments from the limo ...... whether they are contemporaneous is questionable... because there are reports that The FBI firearms people were afraid to fire the weapon because of it's poor condition. “poor condition”.... “unsafe to fire”....‘@-•“‘-•“‘-•“‘‘@

Then he needs to understand who I am.

Also, all these phonies that talk about what good shots they are and how they could easily do it, are full of Water Boo dung. They have obviously never shot a real live human being, so don't understand the

psychological factor. The nervousness, erratic breathing, and sweat in the eyes alone will add much time to the event and effect accuracy.

As for mechanical factors, I can get three shots downrange in about 6 seconds with my MC, which is identical to the TSBD stick. But none of them are AIMED shots, and the target is NOT moving. And I'm damned good at what I do. I can do a bit better with my 700 Remington, but that's because the

action is so much smoother and the trigger is adjusted for proper sniper pull. Still, I can't get a bullet to do a U-turn and hit the target from the rear (head shot) like Oswald did. I wonder how he did that?

Must have been Smart Bullets. (Colonel Craig Roberts USMC Sniper)

Inadequate Equipment. Infantry weapons at platoon and company level were substandard. The 6.5 mm Mannlicher-Carcano rifle stands out as particularly inadequate, it had a much shorter range, lower accuracy and stopping power than the rifles used by other nations. [Regio Esercito]

The only fault that one might level against the 6.5 X 52 as a military cartridge is that it had relatively humane terminal ballistics. The very long, blunt nosed bullet coupled with the fast twist rate of the gun resulted in a bullet that was very stable with a very high resistance to tumbling. The cartridge was known to have inflicted many “through and through” wounds, just leaving a small wound channel. The bullet typically would not tumble inside its’ target unless it encountered something hard such as bone. When it did tumble the wounding effect is well known.

The 6.5 mm Carcano presents several peculiarities when it comes to reloading. First, as I stated above, the military issue bullets were nominally .267” diameter. The only .264 “ bullet I have ever achieved any kind of reasonable results with is the Hornady 160 grain RN. This is due to the bullets long bearing surface. Even with this bullet I have some rifles that are hard pressed to shoot less than 5” at 100 yards. Shooting .264” spitzer pointed bullets in the Carcano is an exercise in futility. [Dave Emary_Hornady Co.]

From knowledge of the difficulty involved in so shooting, it may be possible indirectly to infer something about the probability, as opposed to the possibility, that Oswald did so. Nevertheless, even the most improbable event may have occurred. Thus, to answer the ultimate question of whether Oswald did fire the first two shots 1.66 seconds apart and hit his target at least once in so doing, as much information as available in addition to that gathered in yesterday's testing should obviously be taken into consideration.

The test was conducted yesterday between 10:00 a.m. and noon at the Lorton Correctional facility firing range in Virginia. The National Archives, represented by Mr. David Paynter, brought the Oswald rifle (C.E. 139) for use in the test, but bench rest firing tests and operation of the weapon established that it was in too poor condition to be used. The Committee's Firearms Panel had previously noted the weapon's deterioration since 1963, and their final report reflects the specific nature of the deterioration). Consequently, a similar weapon was used for the actual testing. This rifle was one of the two previously used in August, 1978 for the tests in Dealey Plaza and will be turned over to the Archives as part of the Committee's files at the end of this month

We found that the weapon was characteristically difficult to operate, due to its poor basic design, and in addition, the particular weapon we used had badly worn riflings and therefore shot somewhat inaccurately.

Normal target range body silhouettes, portraying an individual from waist to head, were used as targets. A "kill" was judged to be any shot that hit the silhouette. A "miss" was scored even if the bullet struck the target background, but not within the silhouette.

It is apparently difficult, but not impossible -- at least with only minimal practice with the firearm used -- to fire 3 shots, at least two of which score "kills", with an elapsed time of 1.7 seconds or less between any two shots, even though in the limited testing conducted, no shooter achieved this degree of proficiency.





FROM: G. Robert Blakey, Chief Counsel and Director

SUBJECT: Test on Mannlicher-Carcano

DATE: March 22, 1979

Robert Frazier was the FBI firearms expert who testified in front of the Warren Commission. He said the Italian Mannlicher Carcano was a clip fed military rifle and the manufacturer's name and serial number where on the barrel. The telescope site was a very inexpensive Japanese scope. The sight was mounted by Kleins when it was sent through the mail. As to the sling, "it is not any way similar to a normal sling for a rifle. It appears to be a sling from some carrying case, camera bag, or musical instrument bag. It is a homemade sling to short to be of use. I find it very difficult to use the rifle with a sling at all." He also pointed out the rifle can't be fired without a clip and the clip does not come with the rifle. In regard to the round in the chamber Frazier said, "Normally, when shooting at some object and it was no longer necessary to shoot you would not reload." Frazier tested the rifle on Nov, 27 along with agents Killion and Cunningham. Killion took nine seconds to fire three rounds and Cunningham took seven seconds. Only Frazier was able to fire his three rounds in less than six seconds. At 15 yards, Frazier and Cunningham missed the target hitting 4 inches high and 1 inch to the right of the target. At one hundred yards, Frazier was hitting 4 inches high and 4 inches to the right of the target. The sight was tested and found to be defective due to being improperly mounted by Kleins. Frazier said that in order to hit the President, Oswald would have had to aim 6-8 inches high and 2 feet in front of the President. In regard to bullet exhibit #399 ( magic bullet) found on the stretcher at the hospital, the bullet was clean, no blood on it, and weighed 158.6 grains and the regular weight of such a bullet was 161 grains. Frazier said it should weigh far less pointing out to the Warren Commission that this bullet supposedly went through two men, striking Connally's rib, and leaving metal fragments in Gov. Connally. ( WCH, vl 3, pgs 392-441)

My own investigations into this model of rifle reveals evidence of excessive head-space, dangerous bolt-thrust characteristics, misaligned barrels, improper muzzle crowning, poor feed qualities, as well as a sloppy action and excessive bore and groove sizing based upon the FBI's and Edgewood's own reports. The problem is, the Carcano rifle does not lend itself well to scope mounting in general due to the fact that it is a top loading rifle which requires an off-set mount. This mount must necessarily be affixed to the left side of the receiver so as not to interfere with the operation of the bolt-action; loading, extraction, etc.. This will of course, place the scope in a left "Handed" alignment which I think the Edgewood gunsmith was referring to and was subsequently misunderstood. At any rate, according to Edgewoods own report, Lee Oswald's "Aim-Point" would have to have been some 14 inches above and to the right of his target.

The Science

I will now discourse a bit on the subject of LHO himself, from the view-point of Military-Training, a subject I am also qualified to comment upon.

My observations and opinions will of necessity be generalized due to the fact that I have never had the opportunity to interview any of LHOs shooting instructors and as a result, I am forced to deal in probabilities rather then absolute fact. However circumstantial this evidence may be, I will, I think, by the shear preponderance of evidence, present an overwhelming and devastating case against the LN scenario.

Of all the branches of the Service, The US Marines and the US Army spends the most time and effort in small-arms, live-fire training. Their respective shooting instructors take a great deal of pride, and quite rightly so, in their ability to turn a bunch of mamas-boys who may have never held a rifle in their lives, into effective marks-men. They can and do teach everything necessary to enable a soldier to lay down an effective field of fire, at man-sized targets, at various distances, down-range. There are, however, aspects to shooting no one can teach. Innate abilities that some people possess and others do not. No one can give another a Shooters-Eye, the ability to instantly locate, range and hit a target, moving or stationary. No one can stop the Shooters-Flinch, the reaction to anticipated recoil before the weapon is even discharged, in one who is predisposed to that condition.

In military training, failure is unacceptable, for the trainers as well as the trainees. When presented with a recruit that lacks a shooters-eye and anticipates recoil there are only three things a drill-instructor can do. Allow the recruit to fail at qualification, which will make the DI look bad (unacceptable); qualify the recruit anyway, by either falsifying a score-card (unacceptable); or, firing for the recruit (been known to happen) or let it be known, that slipping a few bucks to the score-keeper will qualify even the poorest of marksmen. (This is what happens 99% of the time in such cases)

Recruits that simply lack the Shooters-Eye, at the unit level, are the ones usually equipped with Machine-Guns or Grenade-Launchers, where accuracy of fire is not a critical issue. But when Shooters-Flinch is also added into the equation, the recruit becomes a combat liability, unreliable, and a danger to his comrades. Such an individual is usually reassigned to a MOS in an area that poses the least likelihood of his ever having to respond to hostile-fire or other enemy-action.

From the evidence of the public record, the probabilities are heavily weighted in favor of LHO being just such a soldier, lacking the shooters-Eye to Locate, Range, Track and Hit a target, moving or stationary,

while possessing the Shooters-Flinch which would cause him to do things like; pull instead of squeezing the trigger ,Stiffening his shoulder prior to the weapons discharge and closing his eyes upon pulling the

trigger. Any and all of these actions, no matter how slight will invariably move the aim-point off target. The fact that LHO barely qualified on the rifle-range and the fact he was assigned to a non-combat MOS is indicative of the above assertion.

Because LHO was in every other respect, a competent Marine and demonstrated an aptitude for foreign-languages, my guess is, he was sent to Russian-Language-School and then reassigned to the Office-of-Naval-Intelligence (ONI) as an operative which, contrary to popular belief, requires no great proficiency in combat (James Bond notwithstanding). Hence, his phony defection and the rest of all the shadowy crap he would be involved in.

A fundamental axiom of the Law of Diminishing Probabilities states: The likelihood of predicting the outcome of any event decreases exponentially with the addition of each new probability factor. Even

though the evidence presented in this and other posts on this subject is mostly circumstantial, this in conjunction with the facts, places the notion of LHO as the LN-Shooter, so far out on the probability-

curve as to qualify as an out and out MIRACLE and presents an overwhelming and devastating case against the LN-Scenario, unless of course, the LNers out there are prepared to assert, the *Almighty* took a direct hand in the murder of JFK, in which case, we have all just entered the Twilight-Zone. (Case-Closed)

The Shooter

One thing both LNers and Buffs seem to agree on is that LHO was a rather poor shooter, although the LNers are quick to point out that his shooting skills were obviously adequate. How obvious, and how adequate, is an issue I feel worth exploring.

There is no real record that I can recall off hand of LHO ever being a gun enthusiast or shooter prior to his entrance into the US Marine Corps so I think it safe to say he entered the Marines, wet-nosed and green, as do many if not most recruits.

From the very beginning, LHO would be immersed in a society that brooks no loners, malingerers, odd ducks, individualists, screw-offs, and screw-ups, a society which from the very first, ruthlessly culls out the people that demonstrate such traits. To exist in such a society, LHO would have had to be a personable team-player with the capacity to bond with the men in his unit. Hardly the psychological profile of the loner and outsider that would later be used to describe this man.

It would be some 3 weeks, if memory serves, before Marine Boots are introduced to their weapons and the firing range. LHO would have had this long to bond with his unit before it would become apparent that he simply had no proficiency as a shooter, and it was this fact that kept him from being branded a misfit and rewarded with the obligatory blanket party pursuant to washing out of the Marine Corps on a general discharge which is the normal fate of odd-duck, misfit recruits.

There are various types of problem shooters encountered by Drill-Instructors on the rifle range. Some have shooters-flinch which is a form of recoil-anticipation that causes the shooter to jerk instead of

squeezing the trigger resulting in more cases than not, in the shooter completely missing the target. The fact that LHO was fairly consistent in getting his Maggie's-Drawers which is a red flag indicating such a miss is a strong indication that that he possessed this tendency. Also, according to the Marines that lived and trained with LHO, he was poorly coordinated and was a regular source of amusement by his attempts to master such things as basic bayonet drill. Finally, the fact that he was a natural lefty being compelled to

train right-handed in all things would only compound the problem, especially eye-hand coordination.

In every training cycle there will be Marine Boots that no matter how well instructed, simply will not

possess the manual skills necessary to accurately fire a rifle. LHO was one such person. Failure to qualify on the rifle-range means a wash-out for the trainee involved, as well as casting the trainers in an unacceptably unfavorable light. The easiest solution is to have another trainee, usually a friend that

volunteers, qualify in the place of the problem shooter. In the event that such a replacement qualifier can't

be found, it is not unheard of for that individuals drill instructor to qualify in his place. The fact that

LHO didn't wash-out shows that in every other respect he was an exemplary Marine as evidenced by the fact that the Marine Corps had sufficient confidence in his abilities to place him in a critical military

occupational specialty (MOS) as a RADAR operator at a top secret installation conducting U2 overflight


After his Marine service, there is no evidence that LHO ever joined any shooting clubs or frequented any

firing ranges, and was only known to have taken 2 hunting trips prior to Nov63, in which on one was known to have missed hitting a rabbit at close range with a shot-gun. Also, it is alleged that LHO attempted to assassinate Gen. Walker prior to his alleged shooting of JFK which if true would mean that he was incapable of even hitting what would most certainly be, a sitting duck target at close range.

Given these facts, to suggest that LHO was anything other than a basically incompetent shooter who was

ill at ease with firearms would be in my opinion, a major fallacy tantamount to a fairy-tale, and anyone who would suggest otherwise is either dishonest or has little to no grasp of the facts of the matter and the reality of the situation.

This is the man the WC Apologists would have you believe, was able to take a poorly made surplus rifle

that was assembled on the spot, not sighted in, and accurately place 2 shots at a moving target, wounding

both JFK and JBC, and killing JFK, while silhouetted against a dark backdrop in an open window, and who was calmly seen drinking a soda moments after the shooting, who then made his way unchallenged out of the TSBD, across town where he killed a trained police officer face to face with a surplus WWII Victory Model S&W .38 special only to be cornered like a trapped rat in a movie theater.

To say that in so doing, LHO violated nearly every tenet of his Marine Corps training would amount to

a gross understatement.

A trained Marine who takes on the mission of assassination will to the man, behave in a manner entirely consistent with that training. He would do whatever it took to acquire the proper weapon and the proper ammunition. He would carefully service the weapon taking it to a remote location where he would properly sight it in aóñïíëéçåãáßÝÛÙ×ÕÓÑÏÍËÉÇÅÃÁ¿½»¹·µ³±¯«sÃ×ÕÓÑÏÍËÉÇÅÃÁ¿½»¹·µ³±¯«©§¥£

he would contrive to accomplish the mission objective unobserved by and unknown to any other person, leaving behind no forensic evidence connecting him to that mission and disappear like a ghost in the night. This is the way professional soldiers are trained to behave.

Lee Harvey Oswald did none of these things! His alleged behavior is totally out of character for a trained Marine, lone nut or not, to the extent that his alleged behavior more closely resembles the antics of the Keystone Cops than the calculated competency of a motivated and determined Marine on a mission.

Those who would deny these facts have little or no appreciation of the realities of Marine Corps training

which by its design is intensive to the extent of producing automatic responses totally devoid of conscious

thought, and like riding a bike, is never forgotten.

LHO didn't kill JFK. LHO didn't kill anything in his life, and even though he may be guilty of the crime of conspiracy in the killing of JFK, he is innocent of the crime of murder and I am more than confident that eventually history will be changed to reflect that fact.


The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries, is not "Eureka!" (I found it) but "That's Funny..." Isaac Asimov


2. The paraffin test showed that Oswald had not fired a rifle.

It certainly suggested he might not have fired a rifle, which was probably why the WC omitted the negative results of the test from the document on which they were listed. Oswald's hands tested positive, but this was AFTER he had been fingerprinted.

Weisberg says the following in NEVER AGAIN:

“The Dallas police made the usual test to determine whether Oswald's hands and face held traces of the gases that are blown back when a rifle is fired. They are known as paraffin test because molten paraffin is placed on the hands and face and allowed to harden. Traces were detected on Oswald's hands. However, they did not necessarily come from the discharge of a rifle. One of the many materials that leave the same deposits, one was the inks on the books and cartons he handled on the job. Another could have been

soap if he had washed his hands. Traces were not detected on the paraffin cast of his face.” (p. 335)

Then, through a FOIA suit that Weisberg filed, he learned the following:

“These records included the results of a number of test firings with that rifle and the paraffin test made on those who fired it. The test firing left heavy deposits on all the shooters faces, quite the opposite of what the paraffin test of Oswald's face disclosed.” (p. 337)

This is consistent with what I have been asserting all along with respect to the discharging of firearms; that there would be actual, physical, quantifiable, and identifiable particulate residue upon the hands and face of the shooter which could be recovered by any forensic examiner worth his salt.

I have gone round and round on this issue with Dot John on several occasions over the years, and who seems solidly stuck on the purely chemical aspect of gunpowder residue examination, demanding

extraordinary proofs for a rather common and ordinary procedure that was in place well before 1963.

3. There was a test for whether Oswald's rifle had been recently fired, and the Dallas cops didn't use it.

There was and is such a test. The test looks for fresh metal fouling in the rifle's barrel. Since my library is on its way to Texas right now, I don't have the exact source, but I came across this fact in a book about forensic science, and I have a copy of the book. The book notes a case in which this test was used, and the case predated the assassination, if memory serves me correctly.

Metal fouling can certainly be used to establish whether or not a firearm has been recently discharged, but is of limited value unless certain factors are already known at the time of the test such as the

type of primer used in the cartridge; e.g., mercury fulminate and potassium chlorate which is highly corrosive as opposed to lead styphnate which is comparatively non-corrosive; the former which can

and will affect the rate at which the metal fouling corrodes and can give an inaccurate impression of the time of discharge. This problem however, can be off-set by the use of other tests in conjunction with the metal fouling test such as swabbing or scraping the free-bore just behind the point where the rifling lands and grooves begin for the purposes of micro-examination and micro-spectrography of the particulate

residue which will always be present in a recently discharged firearm.

4. The dented shell casing found in the depository shows a conspiracy.

There is disagreement on this point. Howard Donahue, who has fired a bunch of Carcano bullets in his day, says he's never seen a case dented like the dented shell casing that was found in the sixth-floor window. Josiah Thompson never managed to dent a shell so severely, either, in all the times he fired Carcano bullets. A British researcher did some tests a few years ago and likewise concluded, as a result of those tests, that the shell in question was not dented during firing.

Since I no longer have access to a Carcano rifle, I'm hoping to enlist the assistance from a researcher who does for the purposes of determining whether or not attempting to chamber a 6.5x54mm Mannlicher

Schoenauer cartridge in a Carcano rifle will produce a similar deformation in that cartridge.

5. The MC was "well-oiled" and would have left oil on the paper bag had the bag been used to carry it to the Depository.

The FBI found oil on the OUTSIDE of the rifle. This has been pointed out to you many times, John. Moreover, the rifle was described as "well oiled," as you should know.

Since some oil was on the outside of the rifle, it stands to reason that at least a speck of it should have gotten on either the blanket or on the paper bag.

For the sake of accuracy, you should point out that you do not know that the rifle was in fact carried into the Depository in that bag. Indeed, there is no in situ photo evidence that such a bag was even present in the sniper's nest; incredibly, the police "failed" to take a single such standard crime-scene picture. And the officers who saw the nest soon after the shooting differed markedly on what the bag looked like and even on whether or not there was a bag there at all. Furthermore, the only two people who saw the bag before it entered the Depository both insisted that the bag that the police placed in evidence was much too long to have been the bag they had seen.

Absolutely correct. Also, since brown paper wicks oil like a sponge, I see it as a practical impossibility that a "Well-Oiled" weapon could be thus transported without leaving behind traces of that oil.

6. Ammunition for the MC had not been manufactured since WWII, therefore no reliable rounds would have been available to Oswald.

I'll pass on this one, since I have never bothered to look into this claim. Wasn't there a lawsuit pending at the time, however, for faulty Carcano ammo?

I thought all of the contention on this issue revolved around 6.5mm Carcano ammunition made by Western in 1954 as part of a military procurement contract issued by the US Marine Corps. Still, even this

ammo would have been "dated" to say the least at the time it was allegedly used and a certain amount of degradation could be expected.

While it is possible to keep ammunition viable for long periods of time the conditions under which it is stored are all important, with heat being a major factor. In a nut-shell, the warmer the ammunition is

kept at, the faster it will degrade. Texas is notorious for hot weather of 100+ degrees and in 1963 air conditioning was not all that common, therefore it is safe to assume that any ammunition stored under such conditions will degrade at a much faster rate and to a greater extent then ammo stored under ideal conditions.

7. The MC was inaccurate.

Certainly rifle experts have severely criticized the weapon. Mark Lane notes some of this criticism in RUSH TO JUDGMENT. During the 1986 mock Oswald trial one prosecution admitted on cross-examination that the rifle is basically a "piece of junk." The WC shooters, who were all Master rated

riflemen, did not have kind things to say about the weapon, as is a matter of record and is known to anyone who has seriously studied the case - they said it had an odd trigger pull and that the bolt was quite difficult to work.

Also, with respect to the Model 38 Carcano, wide variances in bore and groove diameters have been noted by a number of sources which will of course, affect the overall accuracy and performance of this weapon.

The iron sights are fixed and of dubious quality. In one case where I was personally firing such a rifle, I had the sight come completely off the rifle after firing several rounds through it. Subsequent examination of the solder revealed that the sight was affixed to the barrel using lead solder instead of silver solder as is the norm. This produced a much weaker joint which obviously failed. I have no way of knowing how many M38 Carcanos had their sights affixed thusly, but I suspect wartime contingencies made silver and even tin a rare commodity indeed, thus the substitution of lead solder.

10. The fact that the bullet that hit JFK in the head fragmented showed that it wasn't an FMJ bullet.

Forensic expert Dr. Fillinger has pointed this out. So has ballistics and firearms expert Howard Donahue. So has Australian forensic detective Shaun Roach. Furthermore, the x-ray of one of the test skulls from the WC's wound ballistics tests shows fragment distribution that is markedly different than the fragment distribution seen on the JFK autopsy x-rays.

And certainly forensic science knows of no case where an FMJ bullet had a fragment "shear off" and become deposited 1 cm below the entry point. Wound ballistics expert Dr. Sturdivan has acknowledged that the 6.5 mm object on the outer table of the skull in the autopsy x-rays could not possibly have come from the cross-section of a jacketed missile; he notes this is a physical impossibility. Yet, there is metal there, and that metal would have had to come from the cross-section of a bullet if it came from the

rear-head-shot missile. The 6.5 mm object is strong evidence of an additional shot, for which the lone-gunman theory cannot account.

Agreed. I also wish to point out that the only way I could make a FMJ bullet fragment was to fire it through cold rolled plate-steel.

11. CE 399 is "pristine."

Even WC staffers occasionally described the bullet as "pristine." It is nearly pristine. The only damage is to the base, and this damage isn't even visible unless you view the bullet from certain angles. Yet, tests suggest that this deformation, though it looks minor, could not have been caused by CE 399's alleged journey. The late Dr. John Nichols, a forensic pathologist at the University of Kansas, found that he could not deform the bases of any of the 6.5 mm Carcano bullets that he fired, even those that he fired into

tough Ponderosa pine wood. Nor could he cause such deformation by standing on the bullet. He concluded the damage was man-made after the bullet had been fired.

What am I missing here?

Some time ago, researcher Tony Pitman suggested taking a 6.5mm FMJ and firing it into a water tank. After recovering the spent bullet, he suggested lightly tapping it into a piece of soft pine board with

a hammer which I did, and “Voila”...one nearly pristine and slightly deformed bullet Well Mr. Burke, since you think this all is no big deal, I thought I'd give you a little lesson in internal ballistics. Actually, it's more for the readers so that they may perhaps gain an understanding as to just how poorly the WWII M38 Carcano performs. During the course of my little dissertation I will be addressing the last (cough)

assertion you tendered.

When all firearms are discharged, their barrels vibrate in the same manner as the tine of a tuning fork. These vibrations will cause the barrel to move considerably and with violence. Accuracy is absolutely

dependent upon the uniformity of these vibrations and a fundamental requirement of a good gunsmith is the ability to forge and work steel in such a manner as to maximize the barrel's capability of ringing

true with each and every shot.

Barrel vibrations are divided into two parts: One, "Fundamental" and Two, "Secondary" vibrations. With fundamental vibration the entire barrel vibrates as a single unit from one fixed node (the point at which

the barrel is calm) which is at the breech where the barrel is fixed to the receiver. Secondary vibration is a series of overtones in which the barrel is divided longitudinally into a number of vibrating sections

each terminating in a node at the end of a particular section nearest the breech.

Some of the things which if not done just right, which will adversely effect the true ring of a barrel are headspace, screws, crowning, throat, bore and bedding. Bedding screws that are not perfectly true,

improper bedding, and bolt lugs and barrel bands that are not uniform, and note this Mr. Marsh: *SET-SCREWS IN THE RECIEVER-RING WHICH APPLY A POINT OF FORCE AT A SINGLE NODE ON THE BARREL-BREECH* can and will cause conflicting stresses when the rifle is fired, altering the

barrel vibrations to the point of irregularity, thus destroying any hope of uniform downrange accuracy. [Note:] Many of these enumerated defects are known to be present in WWII M38 Carcanos.

Fundamental vibration is set in motion by the shock of discharge. The breech end of the barrel when it is properly melded to the receiver, remains relatively calm and is the single node. The muzzle oscillates in a circular path and can move in any direction through 360 degrees. The position of the muzzle at the instant of bullet exit greatly influences the point of impact on the target. When fundamental vibration is extreme and when the muzzle position (at the instant of bullet exit) varies from shot to shot, all hope of down range accuracy is lost.

Secondary vibration occurs at the same instant as, but independently of, fundamental vibration. In it are a series of nodes and overtones traveling along the length of the barrel producing oscillations similar to that of a snapping whip. Any factor, such as the condition of the firearm, heat of the barrel, powder charge variation, support of the firearm, etc., which introduce small variations in vibration will effect down range accuracy.

Almost every aspect of a rifle-cartridge combination will have some effect on barrel vibration. A heavy load will set up a more violent vibration than a light load. On the other hand, when the velocity is low, (such as the light loaded Carcano) vibrations have more time to develop before the bullet leaves the muzzle. Now note this Mr. Burke:

* THE TOTAL DISTURBANCE FROM A LIGHT LOAD, THOUGH LESS VIOLENT AND RAPID, WILL BE GREATER THAN THAT OF A HEAVY LOAD.* A properly sized bullet fits the barrel and forms a nearly perfect gas seal. Thus expanding gas is trapped is trapped behind the bullet and is pushing

equally in all directions. The force of the gas actually expands the barrel behind the bullet. Note again Mr. Burke: *ANY CHANGE IN THIS FORCE NOT ONLY CREATES A CHANGE IN MUZZLE VELOCITY DUE TO A CHANGE IN FRICTION, BUT ALSO CHANGES THE BARREL STRESSES WHICH EFFECTS VIBRATION.

To give the readers a sense of the real-world impact of barrel vibration on a bullet's terminal ballistic point of impact: Tests conducted by the US Army on the venerable old M1903 Springfield Rifle, which is superior to any M38 Carcano by several orders of magnitude, using standard military ammunition, the angular movement of the muzzle due to vibration equal to more than 40 ft. at 1,000 yards.

This is the reason why the M38 Carcano is generally considered a piece of crap to members of my trade. END OF STORY

With Regard,

Edited by John Simkin
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  • 6 months later...
I went back through some old threads and thought this one rated

another look.

Thanks for bringing this back up, Shanet. It actually might answer a few questions I had about the rifle. Upon re-reading Frazier's testimony before the Warren Commission, I was astounded to find that the markings on the rifle were considered top secret by the Italian Government, and that there was a discussion off the record deciding what they could enter into the record. Furthermore, when they went back on the record, they faiied to say what was excluded. And so I thought, What on Earth could be top secret about the markings?" If Ritchson is right and the rifle was nothing but a ceremonial rifle, that could explain a few things.

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Magnificent article, Sarge!

Jack White :)  :lol:  ;)  :)

Thanks Jack, ;)

For those readers who don't know Jack White, he is one of our premiere researchers and I strongly recommend any serious student of the JFK Assassination to carefully study his work.


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