Jump to content
The Education Forum

Tink's performance in The New York Times


Guest James H. Fetzer
 Share

Recommended Posts

FWIW, I did a wee bit of digging this morning to see if there's anything I'd missed re Umbrella Man. This immediately popped up. According to this article by Jerry Organ, Witt was not pulled from nowhere and propped up by Blakey as Umbrella Man, but outed by Penn Jones...

Fourth Decade comment on Umbrella Man

If this was indeed the case, then Jones would have to have been duped into outing Witt and IDing him as the Umbrella Man. Does anyone here believe this? Really?

Hi Pat; FWIW...Here is a photo of Witts umbrella taken by the commission....b ps and here is the umbrella in Dealey Plaza..i am thinking the Dealey umbrella shows 8...imo.b

he was 53 years old when he testified,at the HSCA ,, that means he was 38 at Dealey......in Dallas that day, if as i believe Jim d posted the Chamberlain incident was 30 years or so previously, that would mean he was only 8 when that occurred with Joe Kennedy, so imo I still cannot see anyone expecting any others to know what holding up an umbrella would mean, in 1963 to a motorcade for jfk, never mind that he expected that jfk would instantly know, i think probably jfk had many other things on his mind than something that took place 30 years ago......that he was not involved in, true his Dad was but, i think that might have had to have been pointed out to him.....imo...as far as Penn goes yes he could have been duped in fact if he was that somehow would be no surprise...is there any documentation by the dentist who gave the info out that um was Witt, something positive, or just say so...thanks all.....b

Edited by Bernice Moore
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 526
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Guest James H. Fetzer

http://www.businessinsider.com/ny-times-umbrella-man-exposed-2011-11

NY Times’ Umbrella Man Exposed

Russ Baker, WhoWhatWhy | Nov. 28, 2011, 8:00 AM | 78 |

Russ Baker

“Umbrella Man” Does His Thing at JFK Assassination Scene

More and more, one is struck by the extent to which the New York Times is disassociated from reality. One might judge the paper’s publishing of official falsehoods as the occasional and accidental byproduct of the pressure to produce so many articles, were it not for the consistency and rigidly sclerotic way it loyally foists patently untrue material upon the public.

I say this as someone who still reads the Times, still has friends working there, and still retains some isolated pockets of fondness for it.

But it is hard to overlook these constant transgressions. As we note here at WhoWhatWhy, these range from ignoring the real reasons for the invasion of Libya to apologizing for fraud perpetrated by its favorite Afghanistan propagandist (and the author of Three Cups of Tea). It surely includes the paper’s failure to share with its readers overwhelming and constantly refreshed documentation of an organized coup that resulted in the death of President John F. Kennedy and the end of meaningful reform in America. I addressed that latter issue in the article, “NY Times’ Ostrich Act on JFK Assassination Getting Old.”

Far from proper journalistic curiosity, the paper sees its job as enforcing orthodoxy, and shutting down consideration of anything untoward. According to the New York Times’s peculiar brand of journalism, coups and plots happen with regularity abroad, but never, never, in the United States.

It is important to include the pejorative phrase “conspiracy theorist” in every article, even acknowledging concern about the health of democracy in America. It is important to have a good laugh at the expense of those poor souls who trouble themselves inquiring into the darker precincts of this country’s history.

So it is with the 48th anniversary of Kennedy’s death. Instead of assigning a single reporter to scrutinize the hundreds or thousands of meaningful, documented facts that do suggest more than “the lone nut did it,” the Times gets busy with the disinformation business.

Here are two Times “contributions” on this occasion:

UMBRELLA MAN

On the 48th anniversary of Kennedy’s murder, the Times ran an op-ed piece and short film by documentary maker Errol Morris about another man’s research into “umbrella man.” Umbrella Man is the nickname for a fellow who famously brought an umbrella on a sunny day for the president’s visit to Dallas November 22, 1963, stood on the “grassy knoll,” and, just as the president’s car passed, he opened the umbrella and pumped it in the air. Many have speculated as to the significance, or lack of significance, of this strange behavior. Some wonder if Umbrella Man was part of the assassination scenario, perhaps signaling to shooters. There was even the September 1975 Senate intelligence committee testimony by Charles Senseney, a contract weapons designer for the CIA, that the agency had perfected an umbrella that shoots undetectable poison darts that can immobilize and kill, raising questions about whether this was in play that day. (See P. 168 in the Senate committee testimony, where Senseney explains specifically about the agency’s use of a toxin and the ability to fire it from a modified umbrella.)

The self-described Umbrella Man, Louie Steven Witt, came forward to offer his testimony in 1978, or three years after the CIA expert provided this now forgotten testimony on umbrellas as weapon. Umbrella Man came forward just as a special House Select Committee on Assassinations was focusing on the possibility of a conspiracy (which, it concluded in its final report…was likely.) (You can order a video of a report on Witt’s testimony, by then ABC News reporter Brit Hume, here)

The counsel for the Assassinations Committee, remarkably, does not mention the prior Senate testimony by the CIA weapons expert that such an umbrella device did exist, and instead quotes a more shaky claim by an “assassinations critic” regarding such a device.

Mr. GENZMAN. Mr. Witt, exhibit 406 is a copyrighted diagram

drawn by assassinations critic Robert B. Cutler which shows two

umbrellas with rocket and flechette attachments. Mr. Witt, do you

know what a flechette is?

Mr. WITT. I do now. I did not prior to our interview yesterday

evening.

Mr. GENZMAN. Did the umbrella in your possession on November

22, 1963, contain a flechette, or a rocket or a dart?

Mr. WITT, No, It did not.

Mr. GENZMAN. Has exhibit 405, the umbrella, ever contained -a

flechette, rocket. or dart?

Mr. WITT. No. Not since it’s been in my possession.

Mr. GENZMAN. Did the umbrella in your possession on November

1963; contain a gun or weapon of any sort?

438

Mr. WITT. No.

Mr. GENZMAN. Has exhibit 405 ever contained a gun or weapon

of any sort?

Mr. WITT. This umbrella?

Mr. GENZMAN. Yes.

Mr. WITT. No.

Mr. GENZMAN. Thank you very much, Mr. Witt.

Mr. Chairman, I have no further questions.

Is the Times at all interested in the credibility of this purported umbrella-bearer? Absolutely not.

Instead, the Morris video presents the idea that sometimes, the most ridiculous scenarios are the truth. And so it presents the ridiculous, and asks us to believe it. Cutting to the chase, the man seen opening an umbrella comes forward to explain why he did it. Reason: in 1963, he was still mad at Britain’s pre-war Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain and his appeasement of Hitler, and held JFK’s father to blame as US ambassador to England in that period. Chamberlain was famed for carrying an umbrella. So—get this—Umbrella Man, hoping to make a statement about what happened in the late 1930s to JFK in 1963, pumped his umbrella at the time the fatal shots were fired…only for this obscure purpose.

The Times passes the responsibility for this travesty to Morris, who passes it along to Josiah Thompson, a former Navy underwater demolitions expert turned Yale philosophy professor turned private investigator, who appears on-screen to ruminate about “Umbrella Man.” He is happy to accept the Chamberlain story as “delightful weirdness.”

Watching this, one gets the sense that Thompson believes there was no conspiracy in JFK’s death. But what the Times implies with this little piece is false. In fact, Josiah Thompson is known for documenting the exact opposite. He wrote a serious investigative book in 1967, “Six Seconds in Dallas,” full of evidence and specifics, in which he concluded there was a conspiracy to kill JFK—involving three different shooters. But the New York Times is not interested in that, only in this new, droll dismissal of another piece of the puzzle.

I called Thompson to ask him about the Morris video, and he pronounced himself delighted with it. I asked him how he knew that the man who came forward to identify himself as Umbrella Man and present the Neville Chamberlain story was actually the same man in the fuzzy photo of many years earlier. By way of explanation, he mentioned hearing a story from a well-respected JFK researcher who in turn had heard that Umbrella Man had told his dentist years earlier that he was umbrella man. Pressing Thompson, I learned that the man who came forward as Umbrella Man never provided proof that he was in fact the man with the umbrella. Even the dentist story is third, fourth, or perhaps fifth hand, not verified by Thompson or his researcher friend. All of which proves nothing, and all of which suggests that maybe, just maybe, the man’s improbable, “delightful” story of Neville Chamberlain is, indeed, fabricated.

Just because Errol Morris is a master of the documentary art does not make him any kind of authority on what should be the province of careful investigators. Just because a story is absurd does not make it real, or “delightful”, as the Times video would like us to consider—and many did, with thousands emailing the Times piece to friends. This is something well understood by the game-players of the covert operations house of mirrors: the Jesuitical contortions that can be made to twist any credible scenario.

Here are some things you should know about the man who came forward to identify himself as Umbrella Man and tell this ludicrous Neville Chamberlain story:

His account of his activities that day don’t track with what Umbrella Man actually did, raising questions as to whether this man who volunteered to testify to the assassination inquiry is even the real umbrella-bearer, or someone whose purpose was to end inquiries into the matter.

The man who came forward, Louie Steven Witt, was a young man at the time of Kennedy’s death. How many young men in Dallas in 1963 even knew what Neville Chamberlain had done a quarter-century before?

In 1963, Witt was an insurance salesman for the Rio Grande National Life Insurance company, which anchored the eponymous Rio Grande Building in downtown Dallas. It’s an interesting building. Among the other outfits housed in the building was the Office of Immigration and Naturalization—a place Lee Harvey Oswald visited repeatedly upon his return from Russia, ostensibly to deal with matters concerning the immigration status of his Russian-born wife, Marina. Another occupant of the Rio Grande Building was the US Secret Service, so notably lax in its protection of Kennedy that day, breaking every rule of security on

every level.

A major client of Rio Grande was the US military, to which it provided insurance.

It’s worth considering the roles of military-connected figures on the day of the assassination. These include Dallas Military Intelligence unit chief Jack Crichton operating secretly from an underground communications bunker; Crichton’s providing a translator who twisted Marina Oswald’s statement to police in a way that implicated her husband; and members of military intelligence forcing their way into the pilot car of Kennedy’s motorcade, which inexplicably ground to a halt in front of the Texas School Book Depository (where Lee Harvey Oswald’s employer, a high official with the local military-connected American Legion, managed to find a “job” for Oswald at a time when his company was otherwise seasonally laying off staff.) Oh, and it’s worth contemplating JFK’s titanic, if under-reported, struggle with top Pentagon officials over how the US should interact with Russia, Cuba, and the rest of the world. You can read more about all this in my book Family of Secrets.

Is this concatenation of facts too crazy to consider? More crazy than that Neville Chamberlain story?

THE JACK AND JACKIE LOVE STORY

Not content with having Morris, who is no Kennedy expert, put out this misleading video on Umbrella Man, the Times earlier featured Morris’s book review of Stephen King’s novel imagining Lee Harvey Oswald. So now you have a man who knows little about the real story, getting people to read the imaginings of one who also knows little of the real story. Another way to look at this is that the New York Times is really, really interested in an occult novelist’s take on the death of a president, but just totally uninterested itself in looking into that death.

You must read Errol Morris’s review of King’s book, and please explain to me what he is talking about, because I have no idea. One of the few things that registered at all from this confusing mess is a comment about Jack and Jackie:

King has said that he struggled with the idea for this book for more than 30 years. One can see why. In fiction, we can decide who did or did not kill Kennedy. Writer’s choice (and King chooses). But he pays his debts to history in other ways — by showing the machine and, at the same time, the simplest human knots, the love stories behind history: Sadie and George[characters in the novel], Jack and Jackie.

Um, “the love stories behind history…Jack and Jackie”?

This is part and parcel of the Times’s approach: to maintain a feeble, People Magazine-like focus on the JFK-Jackie Camelot love story—which never actually existed. Anyone who has read any of the books featuring interviews with close friends of the couple know that the marriage was a political match for the reticent JFK, never for a minute a fairy tale romance, and that by 1963 the duo could barely stand to be in each other’s presence. If this is news to you, come out of your New York Times cave and read….practically anything else. (One worthwhile account—including Jackie explicitly ignoring JFK’s request that, for appearances’ sake, the First Lady not take off to cruise on the yacht of the caddish Aristotle Onassis in the fall of 1963—can be found in Peter Evans’s book, Nemesis. By the way, Onassis hated—and I mean hated—the Kennedys; RFK had blocked a big Onassis business deal years earlier.)

Or read in Family of Secrets how, since childhood, Jackie had been a friend of George de Mohrenschildt, the “father figure” to Lee Harvey Oswald, or how, the night after de Mohrenschildt’s testimony to the Warren Commission, Oswald’s best friend was invited to dinner at Jackie’s mother’s house, along with the Machiavellian intriguer Allen Dulles, whom JFK had fired as CIA director and whom Johnson so shockingly appointed to the Warren Commission investigating Kennedy’s killing—a man who surely is at the top of most people’s lists of those behind the assassination.

If you appreciate these sorts of things, it is striking to learn that Onassis was a business partner in oil deals in the Caribbean prior to Castro’s revolution, with….Oswald’s best friend George de Mohrenschildt, and that Onassis’ brother-in-law was the cover employer of CIA coup plotter Al Ulmer, who just happened to be visiting the Dallas area the week of Nov 22 1963 from abroad.

So, please, can we get past this “love story” pabulum and at least do just a teensy bit of investigating these odd and flagrantly suggestive connections? Maybe they’re all odd coincidences, but at least they seem, intuitively, worth pursuing, at least as much as those “delightfully weird” Neville Chamberlain umbrella stories.

The real danger of a video like the one about the Umbrella Man is that it encourages people to stop questioning, stop investigating. Just laugh it all off. There’s no trouble here in the land of the free, the home of the brave. Nothing to see here, folks, move along, move along.

***

It’s time to stop treating the New York Times as the slightly daffy uncle who is hard of hearing. There’s something more insidious going on, and every single person who works there and refuses to care bears some responsibility. Ditto with the rest of the media, which still takes this institution as its guide on what to cover—and what not to uncover.

Read more: http://whowhatwhy.com/2011/11/28/ny-times%e2%80%99-umbrella-man-exposed/#ixzz1f1uaR92O

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest James H. Fetzer

Jim Marrs, CROSSFIRE (1989), pp. 29-33.

The Umbrella Man, Part I

Jim Marrs

About the time that Kennedy was first hit by a bullet, two men standing near each other on the north sidewalk of Elm Street acted most strangely—one began pumping a black umbrella while the other waved his right arm high in the air.

2kphzp.jpg

These and subsequent actions by this pair aroused the suspicions of researchers over the years, yet the initial federal investigation ignored both men. Their activities are known only through analysis of assassination photographs.

As Kennedy’s limousine began the gentle descent into Dealey Plaza, a man can be seen standing near the street-side edge of the Stemmons Freeway sign holding an open umbrella. He holds the umbrella in a normal fashion and the top of the umbrella almost reaches the bottom of the sign.

In photos taken minutes before Kennedy’s arrival, the umbrella is closed and, immediately after the shooting, pictures show the umbrella was closed again. The man’s umbrella was only open during the shooting sequence. Furthermore, as seen in the Zapruder film, once Kennedy is exactly opposite the man with the umbrella, it was pumped almost two feet into the air and then lowered.

At the same time, the second man—in photos he appears to be of a dark complexion, perhaps a black man or Hispanic—raised his right hand into the air possibly making a fist. This man was located on the outer edge of the Elm Street sidewalk opposite the umbrella man, who was on the inner edge.

The man with the open umbrella was the only person in Dealey Plaza with an open umbrella. Under the warm Texas sun, there was no reason to carry an open umbrella at that time.

Two main theories have emerged concerning the “umbrella man” and his activities that day. Assassination researcher Robert Cutler has long maintained that the umbrella may have been a sophisticated weapon that fired a dart or “flechette” filled with a paralyzing agent. Cutler’s theory has been the object of dirision over the years but it is supported by the 1975 testimony of a CIA weapons developer who told the Senate Intelligence Committee that just such an umbrella weapon was in the hands of the spy agency in 1963.

Charles Senseney, who developed weaponry for the CIA at Fort Detrick, Maryland, described a dart-firing weapon he developed as looking like an umbrella. He said the dart gun was silent in operation and fired through the webbing when the umbrella was open. Senseney said the CIA had ordered about fifty such dart weapons and that they were operational in 1963.

Cutler theorized that the umbrella was used to fire a paralyzing dart into Kennedy immobilizing him for marksmen with rifles. He claims this theory accounts for the small puncture wound in Kennedy’s throat described by Dallas doctors, but which was altered by the time of the Bethesda autopsy. According to Cutler, this dart explains Kennedy’s lack of motion during the shooting sequence. Since such a weapon existed and since both the actions of Kennedy and the “umbrella man” were consistent with the operation of such a weapon, Cutler’s theory cannot be completely dismissed.

However, most assassination researchers prefer the alternative theory that both of these suspicious men may have been providing visual signals to hidden gunmen. This theory suggests that Kennedy was killed by a crossfire coordinated by radiomen. The two men, who were among the closest bystanders to the President when he was first struck, gave signals indicating that he was not fatally hit and therefore more shots were needed.

A fascinating twist on this latter theory came from researcher Gary Shaw, who said the two men may have been providing Kennedy with a last-second sign of who was responsible for his death. Shaw recalled that throughout the planning of the Bay of Pigs invasion, CIA officers had promised an “umbrella” of air protection of the Cuban invaders. This “umbrella” failed to materialize because Kennedy refused to authorize U.S. military support for the invasion. According to Shaw’s theory, the man with the open umbrella symbolized the promise of an air-support “umbrella” while the dark-complected man may have been one of the anti-Castro Cuban leaders known to Kennedy. Thus, in the last seconds of his life, Kennedy may have seen the open umbrella and the face of a Cuban he knew was involved in the Bay of Pigs and realized who was participating in his death.

But this is all speculation. The existence of the “umbrella man” and the dark-complexion man is fact. Their activities after the assassination especially bear study. While virtually everyone in Dealey Plaza was moved to action by the assassination—either falling to the ground for cover or moving toward The Grassy Knoll—these two men sat down beside each other on the north sidewalk of Elm Street.

xkun8p.jpg

Edited by James H. Fetzer
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest James H. Fetzer

Jim Marrs, CROSSFIRE (1989), pp. 29-33.

The Umbrella Man, Part II

Jim Marrs

Here the dark-complexion man appears to put a walkie-talkie to his mouth. In a photograph taken by Jim Towner, what seems to be an antenna can be seen jutting out from behind the man’s head while his right hand holds some object to his face.

2cr67o0.jpg

Several photos taken in the seconds following the assassination show both of these men sitting together on the Elm Street sidewalk. Moments later, the man with the umbrella gets up, takes one last look toward the motorcade still passing under the Triple Underpass, and begins walking east in the direction of the Depository. The dark-complexion man saunters toward the Triple Underpass passing people rushing up The Grassy Knoll. He can be seen stuffing some object—the walkie-talkie?—into the back of his pants.

Despite the suspicious actions of these two men, there is no evidence that the FBI or the Warren Commission made any effort to identify or locate them. Officially they did not exist. Yet over the years, this pair became the focal point of criticism by private researchers. Researchers claimed the lack of investigation of these men was indicative of the shallowness of the government’s handling of the assassination.

Once the House Select Committee on Assassinations was formed in 1976, researchers urged an investigation of both men. The Committee finally released a photograph of the “umbrella man” to the news media and urged anyone with knowledge of the man to come forward.

Coincidentally—if it was a coincidence—the “umbrella man” suddenly was identified in Dallas a few weeks after this national appeal. In August 1978, a telephone caller told researcher Penn Jones, Jr., that the man with the umbrella was a former Dallas insurance salesman named Louis Steven Witt. Jones contacted some local newsmen (Jim Marrs being one of them) and together they confronted Witt, who then was working as a warehouse manager. Witt refused to talk with newsmen but acknowledged that he was in Dealey Plaza on the day Kennedy was killed.

Jones later wrote: “I felt the man had been coached. He would answer no questions and pointedly invited us to leave. His only positive statement, which seemed to come very quickly, was that he was willing to appear before the House Select Committee on Assassinations in Washington.”

Witt indeed appeared before the Committee during its public testimony. His story was comic relief compared to the intense scrutiny of witnesses like Marina Oswald and Warren Commission critics. His story was facile and improbable and when the umbrella that Witt claimed was the same one he had had in Dealey Plaza in 1963 was displayed, it suddenly turned wrong-side out, prompting one Committee member to quip: “I hope that’s not a weapon.”

Witt told the Committee that on the spur of the moment, he grabbed a large black umbrella and went to Dealey Plaza to heckle Kennedy. He claimed that someone had told him that an open umbrella would rile Kennedy. While Witt offered no further explanation of how his umbrella could heckle the president, Committee members – not Witt -- theorized that the umbrella in some way referred to the pro-German sympathies of Kennedy’s father while serving as U.S. ambassador to Britain just prior to World War II. They said the umbrella may have symbolized the appeasement policies of Britain’s Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, who always carried an umbrella.

According to Witt:

I think I went sort of maybe halfway up the grassy area [on the north side of Elm Street], somewhere in that vicinity. I am pretty sure I sat down. . . . [when the motorcade approached] I think I got up and started fiddling with that umbrella trying to get it open, and at the same time I was walking forward, walking toward the street. . . . Whereas other people I understand saw the President shot and his movements; I did not see this because of this thing [the umbrella] in front of me . . . My view of the car during that length of time was blocked by the umbrella’s being open.

Based on the available photographs made that day, none of Witt’s statements were an accurate account of the actions of the “umbrella man” who stood waiting for the motorcade with his umbrella in the normal over-the-head position and then pumped it in the air as Kennedy passed.

Witt’s bizarre story—unsubstantiated and totally at variance with the actions of the man in the photographs—resulted in few, if any, researchers accepting Louis Steven Witt as the “umbrella man.”

And there continues to be no official accounting for the dark-complexion man who appears to have been talking on a radio moments after the assassination. The House Committee failed to identify or locate this man and Witt claimed he had no recollection of such a person, despite photographs that seem to show the “umbrella man” talking with the dark man.

Witt claimed only to recall that a “Negro man” sat down near him and kept repeating: “They done shot them folks.”

Interestingly, one of the Committee attorneys asked Witt specifically if he recalled seeing the man with a walkie-talkie, although officially no one has ever admitted the possibility of radios in use in Dealey Plaza.

Edited by James H. Fetzer
Link to comment
Share on other sites

According to Witt:

I think I went sort of maybe halfway up the grassy area [on the north side of Elm Street], somewhere in that vicinity. I am pretty sure I sat down. . . . [when the motorcade approached] I think I got up and started fiddling with that umbrella trying to get it open, and at the same time I was walking forward, walking toward the street. . . . Whereas other people I understand saw the President shot and his movements; I did not see this because of this thing [the umbrella] in front of me . . . My view of the car during that length of time was blocked by the umbrella’s being open.

Based on the available photographs made that day, none of Witt’s statements were an accurate account of the actions of the “umbrella man” who stood waiting for the motorcade with his umbrella in the normal over-the-head position and then pumped it in the air as Kennedy passed.

Rosemary redux:

Rosemary Willis...noticed two persons who looked "conspicuous." One was a man near

the curb holding an umbrella, who appeared to be more concerned with opening and closing

the umbrella than dropping to the ground like everyone else at the time of the shots.

Since Witt was focused on his umbrella why should it surprise us that he was still focused on handling the umbrella even after it was in a "normal over-the-head position"?

Yeah, there are eccentric people in the world who will make these exciting connections in their minds and grab an umbrella and go heckle the President over something that happened 25 years earlier, or walk by a Fox News van that may or may not have contained people and shout out 45 year old Bob Dylan lyrics.

The shame of it is that the HSCA used Witt to pooh-pooh blood soluble flechette weaponry even though the autopsy doctors considered such a scenario quite possible. The shame of it is that so many people are eager to hang Witt when it should be apparent to students of the era that if the CIA and Special Forces tested this technology it must have caught the attention of one Mitchell WerBell the 3rd.

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/index.php?showtopic=2359

Why aren't we talking about WerBell, instead of Witt?

Well done obfuscation by the HSCA!

Edited by Cliff Varnell
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's not an Antenna, it's a blur streak.

The "Antenna" blur streak is actually one of three blur streaks on the clothing of the man, photographer Tom Craven, running behind DCM.

streaks.png

1 is far lighter than 2 or 3.

The antenna makes its appearance in other photos of DCM, no?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I find aspects of this thread both astounding and embarrassing. First of all, as a rule of thumb, it's a good Idea not to judge the credibility of a witness without ever reading the testimony of that witness. Geez, maybe he said something that'll make you believe him! Second of all, as a rule of them, it's a good idea to read witness testimony with an open mind. Anyone claiming, as a certainty, that NO ONE would hold up an umbrella as a form of silent protest is blowing smoke. I know someone would, because it's the kind of thing I would do, and have done. I even had my picture taken by dozens of photographers while doing so, and was told by one I'd have made the front page except for one thing...Ronald Reagan had just died.

My third observation goes out to those attacking Tink for giving an interview to the Ny Times. First of all, the interview wasn't with the Times, it was with Errol Morris. Errol Morris is not only is an Academy Award-winning director, he publicly disgraced the City of Dallas by demonstrating how a number of city officials, including Detective Gus Rose and DA Henry Wade, conspired to frame an innocent man. As a result, he has probably done more to suggest Oswald was framed than anyone here. That no one else has mentioned this is astounding, IMO. As the interview with Tink stretched for hours and hours, moreover, it certainly seems likely that Tink DID discuss evidence pointing to a conspiracy and that Morris will use that footage in his upcoming film or series on the assassination. We'll see.

What I find astounding is that Tink says he believes Witt simply because his story is so outlandish, it has to be true.

That's no basis on its own to believe anything - imho.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I find aspects of this thread both astounding and embarrassing. First of all, as a rule of thumb, it's a good Idea not to judge the credibility of a witness without ever reading the testimony of that witness. Geez, maybe he said something that'll make you believe him! Second of all, as a rule of them, it's a good idea to read witness testimony with an open mind. Anyone claiming, as a certainty, that NO ONE would hold up an umbrella as a form of silent protest is blowing smoke. I know someone would, because it's the kind of thing I would do, and have done. I even had my picture taken by dozens of photographers while doing so, and was told by one I'd have made the front page except for one thing...Ronald Reagan had just died.

My third observation goes out to those attacking Tink for giving an interview to the Ny Times. First of all, the interview wasn't with the Times, it was with Errol Morris. Errol Morris is not only is an Academy Award-winning director, he publicly disgraced the City of Dallas by demonstrating how a number of city officials, including Detective Gus Rose and DA Henry Wade, conspired to frame an innocent man. As a result, he has probably done more to suggest Oswald was framed than anyone here. That no one else has mentioned this is astounding, IMO. As the interview with Tink stretched for hours and hours, moreover, it certainly seems likely that Tink DID discuss evidence pointing to a conspiracy and that Morris will use that footage in his upcoming film or series on the assassination. We'll see.

What I find astounding is that Tink says he believes Witt simply because his story is so outlandish, it has to be true.

That's no basis on its own to believe anything - imho.

I agree that that is no basis upon which to come to conclusions. I suspect, however, that Tink was merely being playful. I've heard dozens of people say similar things--that truth is stranger than fiction, etc--and didn't take that to mean they honestly believe it's ALWAYS stranger than fiction.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

FWIW, I did a wee bit of digging this morning to see if there's anything I'd missed re Umbrella Man. This immediately popped up. According to this article by Jerry Organ, Witt was not pulled from nowhere and propped up by Blakey as Umbrella Man, but outed by Penn Jones...

Fourth Decade comment on Umbrella Man

If this was indeed the case, then Jones would have to have been duped into outing Witt and IDing him as the Umbrella Man. Does anyone here believe this? Really?

Jones' heart was in the right place. But from where I sit, it's obvious he was REPEATEDLY duped.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

FWIW, I did a wee bit of digging this morning to see if there's anything I'd missed re Umbrella Man. This immediately popped up. According to this article by Jerry Organ, Witt was not pulled from nowhere and propped up by Blakey as Umbrella Man, but outed by Penn Jones...

Fourth Decade comment on Umbrella Man

If this was indeed the case, then Jones would have to have been duped into outing Witt and IDing him as the Umbrella Man. Does anyone here believe this? Really?

Jerry Organ? The seeker of truth?

Von Pein is more open minded than that guy.

That Witt was outed by Jones and Marrs is confirmed by Marrs in Fetzer's post. This happened, evidently, months after the HSCA published a picture of Umbrella Man and asked him to come forward. If Blakey, or anyone, for that matter, had conspired to push a fake Umbrella Man on the public, it only makes sense that they would have done so at that time. If they were in the business of pushing fakes on the public, moreover, it only makes sense to assume they'd have pushed a fake Mexico City Mystery Man as well. Umbrella Man, after all, was merely a topic of discussion among buffs. The Mexico City Mystery Man, on the other hand, had been the topic of a best-seller.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I find aspects of this thread both astounding and embarrassing. First of all, as a rule of thumb, it's a good Idea not to judge the credibility of a witness without ever reading the testimony of that witness. Geez, maybe he said something that'll make you believe him! Second of all, as a rule of them, it's a good idea to read witness testimony with an open mind. Anyone claiming, as a certainty, that NO ONE would hold up an umbrella as a form of silent protest is blowing smoke. I know someone would, because it's the kind of thing I would do, and have done. I even had my picture taken by dozens of photographers while doing so, and was told by one I'd have made the front page except for one thing...Ronald Reagan had just died.

My third observation goes out to those attacking Tink for giving an interview to the Ny Times. First of all, the interview wasn't with the Times, it was with Errol Morris. Errol Morris is not only is an Academy Award-winning director, he publicly disgraced the City of Dallas by demonstrating how a number of city officials, including Detective Gus Rose and DA Henry Wade, conspired to frame an innocent man. As a result, he has probably done more to suggest Oswald was framed than anyone here. That no one else has mentioned this is astounding, IMO. As the interview with Tink stretched for hours and hours, moreover, it certainly seems likely that Tink DID discuss evidence pointing to a conspiracy and that Morris will use that footage in his upcoming film or series on the assassination. We'll see.

What I find astounding is that Tink says he believes Witt simply because his story is so outlandish, it has to be true.

That's no basis on its own to believe anything - imho.

I agree that that is no basis upon which to come to conclusions. I suspect, however, that Tink was merely being playful. I've heard dozens of people say similar things--that truth is stranger than fiction, etc--and didn't take that to mean they honestly believe it's ALWAYS stranger than fiction.

Pat,

The SOLE basis put forward for that proposition was the "weirdness" of Witt's story. I mean. either this was a "light-hearted" or piece or one designed to lay to rest any doubt about UM's identity. Which was it?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest James H. Fetzer

Go to the article in The New York Times and listen to what Tink says. There is nothing "playful" about it and

his sarcasm is directed at anyone who believes in conspiracy theories about the assassination of JFK! Listen:

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/22/opinion/the-umbrella-man.html

It seems to me Pat Speer not only misses the boat in this case but he is not even anywhere close to the water.

I find aspects of this thread both astounding and embarrassing. First of all, as a rule of thumb, it's a good Idea not to judge the credibility of a witness without ever reading the testimony of that witness. Geez, maybe he said something that'll make you believe him! Second of all, as a rule of them, it's a good idea to read witness testimony with an open mind. Anyone claiming, as a certainty, that NO ONE would hold up an umbrella as a form of silent protest is blowing smoke. I know someone would, because it's the kind of thing I would do, and have done. I even had my picture taken by dozens of photographers while doing so, and was told by one I'd have made the front page except for one thing...Ronald Reagan had just died.

My third observation goes out to those attacking Tink for giving an interview to the Ny Times. First of all, the interview wasn't with the Times, it was with Errol Morris. Errol Morris is not only is an Academy Award-winning director, he publicly disgraced the City of Dallas by demonstrating how a number of city officials, including Detective Gus Rose and DA Henry Wade, conspired to frame an innocent man. As a result, he has probably done more to suggest Oswald was framed than anyone here. That no one else has mentioned this is astounding, IMO. As the interview with Tink stretched for hours and hours, moreover, it certainly seems likely that Tink DID discuss evidence pointing to a conspiracy and that Morris will use that footage in his upcoming film or series on the assassination. We'll see.

What I find astounding is that Tink says he believes Witt simply because his story is so outlandish, it has to be true.

That's no basis on its own to believe anything - imho.

I agree that that is no basis upon which to come to conclusions. I suspect, however, that Tink was merely being playful. I've heard dozens of people say similar things--that truth is stranger than fiction, etc--and didn't take that to mean they honestly believe it's ALWAYS stranger than fiction.

Pat,

The SOLE basis put forward for that proposition was the "weirdness" of Witt's story. I mean. either this was a "light-hearted" or piece or one designed to lay to rest any doubt about UM's identity. Which was it?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

FWIW, I did a wee bit of digging this morning to see if there's anything I'd missed re Umbrella Man. This immediately popped up. According to this article by Jerry Organ, Witt was not pulled from nowhere and propped up by Blakey as Umbrella Man, but outed by Penn Jones...

Fourth Decade comment on Umbrella Man

If this was indeed the case, then Jones would have to have been duped into outing Witt and IDing him as the Umbrella Man. Does anyone here believe this? Really?

Jerry Organ? The seeker of truth?

Von Pein is more open minded than that guy.

That Witt was outed by Jones and Marrs is confirmed by Marrs in Fetzer's post. This happened, evidently, months after the HSCA published a picture of Umbrella Man and asked him to come forward. If Blakey, or anyone, for that matter, had conspired to push a fake Umbrella Man on the public, it only makes sense that they would have done so at that time. If they were in the business of pushing fakes on the public, moreover, it only makes sense to assume they'd have pushed a fake Mexico City Mystery Man as well. Umbrella Man, after all, was merely a topic of discussion among buffs. The Mexico City Mystery Man, on the other hand, had been the topic of a best-seller.

Pat,

This thing can be argued round in circles until we all fall over.

As far as I 'm concerned this guy was probably 20 feet from JFK when he was hit. He's pumping an umbrella in the air at the moment JFK rides past and the shots begin. He then disappeared for 15 years.

As pointed out by Bernice he was 8 years old when the event he was allegedly protesting occurred.

The photographic record is inconclusive for anyone to say it was definitely him. So all we have is Witt's story and a pile of assumptions that every man and his dog is throwing into the mix.

I'm not really buying into anyone's arguments regarding the HSCA and their possible motives for wheeling this guy out. The Mexico City man is a different kettle of fish in my opinion. Blakey wanted the Mexico City stuff to go away more than the Warren Comission did.

I can't say this is an unimportant sideshow because TUM might not be unimportant. He might not be Witt and if he's not, then what does that mean? In an unsolved case like this why would any of us throw something like this in the trash?

I think dismissing him is equally as stupid as saying he was definitely an assassin.

FWIW, Witt claimed he found out about the significance of the Umbrella from someone else.

Mr. FAUNTROY. All right. Now, when you left--let's assume that it was at work. When you left for lunch, is it your testimony that it was your intent to utilize the umbrella to heckle the President?

Mr. WITT. Yes; that is true. That was the only reason I was carrying it.

Mr. FAUNTROY. So that you weren't just going for a walk at lunch?

Mr. WITT. Well, I did go out for a walk every day.

Mr. FAUNTROY. I see.

Mr. WITT. Every day that the weather was not extreme, either raining or excessively hot. This day I took the umbrella along and going out, if it was handy for me to do my little act of heckling, then that was my plan, yes.

Mr. FAUNTROY. So it was your intent to use the umbrella if you happened to be on the route that the President was traveling during that day?

Mr. WITT. That is correct.

Mr. Fauntroy. I wonder if you would care to tell us a little more about your understanding of the significance of the umbrella, and why you felt that it would heckle the president to raise the umbrella?

Mr. WITT. I know the generalities of the thing. It had something to do with the--when the senior Mr. Kennedy was Ambassador or England, and the Prime Minister, some activity they had had in appeasing Hitler. The umbrella that the Prime Minister of England came back with got to be a symbol in some manner with the British people. by association, it got transferred to the Kennedy family, and, as I understood, it was a sore spot with the Kennedy family, like I said, in coffee break conversations someone had mentioned, I think it is one of the towns in Arizona, it is Tucson or Phoenix, that someone had been out at the airport or some place where some members of the Kennedy family came through and they were rather irritated by the fact that they were brandishing the umbrellas. This is how the idea sort of got stuck in my mind.

Mr. FAUNTROY. Is it true that what you felt was that Mr. Kennedy would be sensitive because of the appeasement image of the umbrella as related to his father?

Mr. WITT. Not the appeasement thing. It was just--excuse me--I just understood that it was sort of a sore spot, with them and this was just one thing. I personally never thought too much of liberal politics in general. In this case the Kennedy family just happened to be in office.

Mr. FAUNTROY. I see. And it had no relationship in your own thinking between Mr. Kennedy's posture with; say, the Russians?

Mr. WITT. No. No. No. That was not it at all.

Mr. FAUNTROY. But someone had--no--you had read in the paper that someone had used an umbrella to heckle the President and that it was a sore spot, and that was the reason---

Mr. WITT. Not read in the papers.

Mr. FAUNTROY. Someone told you?

Mr. WITT. Yes. This was in a conversation somewhere at work. I wish that I could remember now who brought the subject up and put this idea in my head. I am sure that I would have taken that umbrella and clouted him over the head somewhere in this last 2 or 3 weeks.

Now, to be clear, I am not claiming I KNOW Witt was Umbrella Man. What I am trying to convey is that those claiming he's NOT Umbrella Man are just wishing it to be so, and haven't done the research necessary to make an intelligent argument otherwise. Heck, some of them haven't even read his testimony. And no one, outside Lifton, even seemed to be aware that Witt was known to researchers well before the HSCA found about him.

Now, if someone wants to either 1) research Witt, and prove him to be a mysterious gent with a motive to lie (and no, having worked at an insurance company isn't sufficient motive), or 2) research Witt and the photo evidence, and prove it is not Witt in the pictures, well, then, fire away. But no one's doing that. They're saying "I smell a rat, and I refuse to accept anyone's explanation for why I smell a rat." And that's exactly the point Tink Makes in the film! SOMETIMES it smells like a rat because some weirdo is wearing rat musk cologne!

When one studies the case, one finds that there are plenty of rat smells where no one has stepped forward and admitted wearing rat musk cologne. I say laugh it off and move on.

Edited by Pat Speer
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Go to the article in The New York Times and listen to what Tink says. There is nothing "playful" about it and

his sarcasm is directed at anyone who believes in conspiracy theories about the assassination of JFK! Listen:

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/22/opinion/the-umbrella-man.html

It seems to me Pat Speer not only misses the boat in this case but he is not even anywhere close to the water.

I find aspects of this thread both astounding and embarrassing. First of all, as a rule of thumb, it's a good Idea not to judge the credibility of a witness without ever reading the testimony of that witness. Geez, maybe he said something that'll make you believe him! Second of all, as a rule of them, it's a good idea to read witness testimony with an open mind. Anyone claiming, as a certainty, that NO ONE would hold up an umbrella as a form of silent protest is blowing smoke. I know someone would, because it's the kind of thing I would do, and have done. I even had my picture taken by dozens of photographers while doing so, and was told by one I'd have made the front page except for one thing...Ronald Reagan had just died.

My third observation goes out to those attacking Tink for giving an interview to the Ny Times. First of all, the interview wasn't with the Times, it was with Errol Morris. Errol Morris is not only is an Academy Award-winning director, he publicly disgraced the City of Dallas by demonstrating how a number of city officials, including Detective Gus Rose and DA Henry Wade, conspired to frame an innocent man. As a result, he has probably done more to suggest Oswald was framed than anyone here. That no one else has mentioned this is astounding, IMO. As the interview with Tink stretched for hours and hours, moreover, it certainly seems likely that Tink DID discuss evidence pointing to a conspiracy and that Morris will use that footage in his upcoming film or series on the assassination. We'll see.

What I find astounding is that Tink says he believes Witt simply because his story is so outlandish, it has to be true.

That's no basis on its own to believe anything - imho.

I agree that that is no basis upon which to come to conclusions. I suspect, however, that Tink was merely being playful. I've heard dozens of people say similar things--that truth is stranger than fiction, etc--and didn't take that to mean they honestly believe it's ALWAYS stranger than fiction.

Pat,

The SOLE basis put forward for that proposition was the "weirdness" of Witt's story. I mean. either this was a "light-hearted" or piece or one designed to lay to rest any doubt about UM's identity. Which was it?

I've read a number of interviews with Morris in which he discusses the assassination. I'm pretty sue he leans towards being a LN, but is still partly on the fence. He makes it clear, however, that he is totally intrigued by some people's obsession with the case. He looks at us as lab rats, I suppose, caught in a maze leading to the cheese of truth. In any event, I feel quite certain his "Umbrella Man" movie was just a teaser for the much larger project he's working on. and that his choice of "Umbrella Man" as his opening salvo was due to what he and Thompson interpreted as its humorous nature.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...