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Over the years LN advocates have cooked up several rationalizations to explain why most witnesses heard closely bunched shots at the end of attack. They claimed it was the result of "echoes", fragments bouncing off the windshield, or incompetent witnesses. But they have never tried to explain the other problem.

How could there be such a large consensus who only heard one early "noise"? And why did most witnesses state that that one noise didn't sound at all like the other shots or like a rifle?

Scientists and clinical psychologists have conducted countless tests on the effects of loud noises over the years on human beings, and have confirmed that involuntary startle reactions will be provoked by sound levels of 90 db or more. And the HSCA has confirmed that Oswald's rifle generated sound levels which to the ears of the limo passengers, were sixteen times louder than that.

Those sounds included a 130 decibel shock wave as well as a muzzle blast which was almost as loud and of greater duration. And in fact, we see exactly those kinds of dramatic reactions beginning within a third of a second following frames 285 and 312.

And yet most witnesses heard only one noise prior to the very end of the attack. And that includes the passengers in the President's limousine who should have perceived the earliest shots as the loudest, since they were closer to the alleged sniper's nest then.

Any remaining doubts should be resolved by the fact that among law enforcement professionals that day, not even one of them said the early shots were closer together than the final ones. Among the Secret Service agents, no less than four who are visible in the Altgens #6 photo, described actions which took place after hearing one noise and before hearing two more. In each case, we can easily confirm in that photo, taken at the equivalent of Zapruder frame 255, that those actions had not yet taken place.

The obvious conclusion from all this is that the early shots were not very loud and that the witnesses were correct when they described the only one of them they heard, as unlike a rifle shot. Their total lack of startle reactions then corroborates their testimonies with absolute certainty, as do a multitude of other facts.

Robert Harris

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