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As for this stuff about venetian blinds and fishing poles, show me some evidence and I'll deal with it. So far, I've not seen the names of these witnesses, any testimony, sworn or even unsworn statements to that effect. So how seriously am I expected to take it?

I'm with you on this one, Martin. It seems apparent there is no support for these latter day stories. As a result, it seems quite possible these "witnesses" had heard the "curtain rods" story somewhere along the line, and had 1) misremembered the story as being about "venetian blinds" and 2) come to exaggerate their own role in history through telling people Oswald had lied to them as well.

As some are fond of reminding us, the initial recollections are of utmost importance. Well, the other side of this is that subsequent recollections tend to get worse over time to the extent even that the memories of people ten or twenty years down the road are as likely to be 100% wrong as 100% right.

Let's take, for example, Harold Norman.

Harold Norman (11-26-63 FBI report, CD5 p26) (On seeing Oswald earlier in the day) “He further stated he cannot recall whether he saw Oswald at the Texas School Book Depository during Friday, November 22, 1963." (On the shooting) "He stated that about the time the car in which the president was riding turned on to Elm Street, he heard a shot. He said he thought the shot had been fired from the floor directly above him. He further stated at that time he stuck his head from the window and looked upward toward the roof but could see nothing because small particles of dirt were falling from above him. He stated two additional shots were fired after he had pulled his head back in from the window.” (

12-4-63 affidavit to the Secret Service, 17H208) (On seeing Oswald earlier that day) "On November 22, 1963, to the best of my memory, the last time I saw him was about 10:00AM when we were both working on the first floor of the building. I did not speak to him at that time." (On the shooting) “Just after the President passed by I heard a shot and several seconds later, I heard two more shots. I knew that the shots had come from directly above me, and I could hear the expended cartridges fall to the floor. I could also hear the bolt action of the rifle. I also saw some dust fall from the ceiling of the fifth floor and I felt sure that whoever fired the shots was directly above me. I saw all of the people down on the street run toward the west side of the building, so I went to that side with Williams and Jarman.”

(3-24-64 testimony before the Warren Commission, 3H186-198) (On seeing Oswald earlier that day) (I saw him) "around about 10 or 10:15, somewhere in the neighborhood of that...Over in the bins by the windows, I mean looking out, you know, at Elm Street, towards Elm Street...(On) The first (floor)...I was looking out the window. He happened to come by to fill orders." (When asked if he said anything to Oswald and if Oswald had said anything to him) "No, he didn't...No" (On who else was out front when he and Jarman went outside) "Well, I believe Billy Lovelady, I think. He was sitting on the steps there." (On the shooting) “About the time that he got past the window where I was, well, it seems as though he was, I mean you know, brushing his hair. Maybe he was looking at the public…I can’t remember what the exact time was but I know I heard a shot, and then after I heard a shot, well, it seems as though the President, you know, slumped or something, and then another shot and I believe Jarman or someone told me, he said “I believe someone is shooting at the President,” and I think I made a statement “it is someone shooting at the President, and I believe it came from up above us. Well, I couldn’t see at all during the time but I know I heard a third shot fired, and I could also hear something sounded like the shell hulls hitting the floor and the ejecting of the rifle.” (When asked if he saw any dirt or dust falling) "I didn't see any falling but I saw some in Bonnie Ray Williams hair...I believe Jarman told him that it was in his hair first. Then I, you know, told him it was and I believe Jarman told him not to brush it out his hair but I think he did anyway." (When asked what happened after that) "Well, we ran to the farthest window facing the expressway."

(Interview with CBS broadcast 6-25-67, additional portions broadcast in 1992) (On seeing Oswald earlier that day) "On that particular morning there were three or four of us standing by the window, and Oswald came over and said, "what's everybody looking at, what's everybody excited about?" And so I - we told him we was waiting on the President. So he just snudged up and walked away." (On the shooting) "And then I think about that time, Jarman says "Somebody's shooting at the President." And I told Jarman, I said "I know it is" because I could hear it being above me and I could hear the shots and everything. And I could even now hear the empty cartridge hit the floor I mean after the shots had been fired. And so, after the shots were fired, well all the officers and everyone else seemed to think it came from down the track down by the underpass cause that's where everyone ran over thatta way. But just like I've said, I've been hunting enough to know the sound of a rifle from a backfire or a firecracker, especially this close to me." (When asked how many shots he heard) “Three. I’d say just about like this BOOM…click click…BOOM…click clickBOOM. Something similar to that.”

(10-20-77 HSCA interview) (On seeing Oswald earlier in the day) "Well a few more friends of mine, we were over by the window, main entrance coming into the building, and we were looking out and he came over and made the statement to us and asked what was everybody excited about because the president was coming to town." (On Oswald's behavior after making out that the president's visit was nothing to get excited about) "he left, and I never did pay him much, no attention." (When asked a bit later if he saw Oswald come in to work) "No...There's one thing I do recall now was when he ask us what was everybody so excited about the president coming to town. Then when he turn around to leave, you know how a kid would do when he's playing cowboys and Indians?...He did like this: 'pow.'" (When asked if he meant that Oswald behaved as if he were a "cowboy firing two guns') "Yes." (On the shooting) "just as the motorcade came around...3 shots was fired...Boom, clack-clack, boom, clack-clack, boom. One at a time. I see the President fall back and do high hand." (When asked if that was in response to the first shot) "No, I didn't think it was the first shot. I can't recall. (When asked if he saw the president react to the first shot) "No, I didn't because I really didn't know who was shooting--who somebody was shooting at. I mean, I heard the shots, but not thinking that, you know, that that was what was happening--that the president had been hit." (When asked from where he thought the shots were being fired) "From right up above me, up on the fifth floor. And I knew the shots had to be on the 6th floor, you know, on top of the roof." (When asked if heard any cartridges fall) "I heard three." (When asked if Jarman had pointed out any debris in his hair) "Yes...I didn't feel it. It was just something that must have been lightly--debris. It wasn't nothing, you know, that I really could feel...I feel like it was coming from either somebody moving around or something that had to cause the debris to fall down in my hair like that." (When asked again from where he thought the shots were being fired) "Well, I myself, I knew all the time that they came from above, why you could just hear it, I mean, you know, you know somebody's up there..." (On the comments of Jarman and Williams, after they ran to the west side) "Well, at one time somebody made a statement that someone was shooting at the president or they thought someone was shooting at the president. And I think I made the statement 'Yes, I know somebody is shooting at him.'" (When asked if he saw the president hit) "Well, I feel like that he had been hit. I mean I feel like this because I only--he went back in some type of way, he did his hand or something, I don't know if he was falling or reaching for it or what, but I felt like that he had been hit there."

(6-13-93 Interview with PBS Frontline) (On seeing Oswald earlier in the day) "We were looking out towards Elm Street, so he walked up and asked us, said, "What is everybody looking for? What's everybody waiting on?" So we told him we was waiting on the President to come by. He put his hands in his pocket and laughed and walked away, so I don't know where he went, or if he went upstairs or downstairs or where." (On the sound of the shots) “We was sitting on the fifth floor, directly under the sixth floor windows. The shots came from above and there was a gun and the shots were sounding, "Boom! Click, click. Boom! Click, click. Boom! Click, click." So there was three shots fired right up over us when we were sitting on the fifth floor.” (Intriguingly, the transcription of the first part of this Frontline interview, when published in Gus Russo's 1998 book Live by the Sword, had a few extra lines.) In Russo's transcription, between Norman's saying Oswald "laughed and walked away" and his saying "I don't know where he went" he says "I thought maybe he's just being happy that morning or something. He was glad the President was coming through. He acted as though he didn't know, but I kind of think he did know." (Russo's transcription of the second part of the interview, in which Norman describes the shots, was also considerably different than the interview shown on TV, and far more expansive.) "At the time of the shooting, James Jarman and myself were on the fifth floor. Somehow he (Bonnie Ray Williams) lost us. But he did come down to find us just before the motorcade came through. So he joined us and we pulled up some cartons, standing in the window waiting on the motorcade. And as the motorcade came by, we started looking and we had a good view. And all of a sudden, we hear something. 'Boom, ack, ack, boom, ack, ack, boom.' I told Jarman, 'I believe somebody's shooting at the President.' And he said, 'Yeah, that certainly sounds like it.' And then by this time we looked over and there was some debris or dirt or something fell on top of Jarman's head. And that was three of the shells I heard on the floor. And when the police officer asked about it, we told them about it and they went up there and that is what they found up there on the sixth floor. Three empty cartridge shells up there."

(Article by Bill Hendricks in the San Antonio Express News, as found in the 11-20-93 Moscow-Pullman Daily News) "Norman was a 25-year old employee at the Texas School Book Depository when Kennedy was shot to death Nov 22 1963. One of his co-workers was Lee Harvey Oswald, whom police later arrested as a suspect in the killing. Now, 30 years later, Norman is unemployed, although he sells copies of JFK Today, a tabloid-sized newspaper for $3 a copy to tourists at Dealey Plaza...'I knew him,' Norman said of Oswald--but not well. The two never talked, except to exchange a brief greeting. Norman recalled seeing Oswald shortly before the president's motorcade reached Dealey Plaza. That was on the fifth floor of the depository, Norman noted, adding that he and another worker, James Jarman, were leaning out of a window with a view of Dealey Plaza. 'He walked over to us and asked what we were doing,' Norman said of Oswald. 'We said we were waiting for the president's motorcade. He laughed and walked away.' A few minutes later, Norman said, he heard three shots fired from the sixth floor window directly above the one he was using to view the parade."

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Mr. Lifton,

Is there a reason why you are incapable of saying you disagree with me without being patronizing, resorting to making personal remarks, or pretending to know what I believe without actually having a clue? I'm trying to stick to the evidence here, trying to stick with what you actually said and not what I think you believe, can you do the same? I don't want to waste my time responding to crap so if it'll stop you making assumptions and putting words in my mouth and allow us to concentrate on the evidence here is my position (which is often evolving based on what I learn):

No reason, Martin. The sooner you accept that he can dole out such treatment with complete immunity here, the happier you'll be. It doesn't matter, you see. He can wilfully lie about what you believe, falsely claim credit for evidence YOU found, and all the while treat you with nought but patronizing disdain, and it will be YOU Martin, who is expected to apologize by the forum owner.

And there is no point in complaining to the deputized. The one involved in this thread will tell you that naifs like you should be honored, Martin - HONORED that the likes of Mr Lifton even bothers to read your material - let alone tell you what you mean by it.

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As for this stuff about venetian blinds and fishing poles, show me some evidence and I'll deal with it. So far, I've not seen the names of these witnesses, any testimony, sworn or even unsworn statements to that effect. So how seriously am I expected to take it?

I'm with you on this one, Martin. It seems apparent there is no support for these latter day stories. As a result, it seems quite possible these "witnesses" had heard the "curtain rods" story somewhere along the line, and had 1) misremembered the story as being about "venetian blinds" and 2) come to exaggerate their own role in history through telling people Oswald had lied to them as well.

[deleted --to save space]

Pat:

Regarding the matter of fishing rods or fishing pole. . . :

You are incorrect when you state that there is "no support" for these "latter day stories."

In the instance of Mary Hollies: the research and reporting was originally done by writer Ed Oxford and published in the first of three articles in American History Magazine back in 1988 (yes, the 25th anniversary; and that is seven years before the advent of the Internet!) In 1995, I was in touch with Oxford, and he went over his notes with me.

In short, all this took place almost 25 years ago --and I see no reason to doubt the validity of what Hollies said to Oxford at the time (circa 1987 or 1988, when he interviewed her).

There is more to the story, but this is her original account.

In my opinion, its most unfortunate that Hollies did not offer any of this when interviewed by the FBI back in 1963 or 1964.

If its true, then Lee Oswald was observed with a large package at work.

Furthermore, if its true, he was involved in deception--and thats really the main (if not the only) point I was making.

Of course, if true, then Hollies' account offers strong support to Linnie Mae Randle's original account--to FBI Agent Bookhout--that Oswald's package was 3 feet plus. But my primary focus here is not Randle's estimate of size (as reported by Bookhout); rather, its what Oswald said (by way of explanation), as recalled by Hollies.

I am sure you would agree that had that been in an FBI 302 interview dated November or December, 1963, Hollies would have been an important Warren Commission witness, and would have been deposed in detail about the incident.

DSL

4/21/13; 12:30 PM PDT

Los Angeles, California

Edited by David Lifton
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Now, I see that you have added to your revisionist catalog the notion that there was no Marrion Baker confrontation? (Oh really? And what about all the FBI reports to the contrary. . or is that all made up? And what about the fact that Truly told his wife about it, and that was in the Philadelphia newspapers, within 24 -36 hours? Or was that made up too?)

David, do you have an exact cite for the part in red? It would be most helpful to establish that such information from Truly's wife was indeed printed so early.

Sean:

I was trying to contact you via the London Forum, but it didn't work. Please email me at dlifton2003@yahoo.com.

Thanks.

DSL

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  • 1 month later...

From Frazier's 2002 Oral History for the Sixth Floor:

(After Mack asks him if he noticed anything unusual in the plaza before the shooting) The only thing I can remember that I thought was a little unusual - and maybe it wasn’t - but it was a little unusual to me, I thought the motorcycle policemen who were escorting the President’s car - there was several of them and they were - because they was getting pretty close to getting onto the freeway, and I don’t know how long, how many blocks they had gone in this parade - but they were kind of clowning around, cutting their motorcycles on and off to make them backfire and so forth. I thought that was a little unusual…

Mack then asks Frazier if they were doing this on purpose, to which Frazier replies in the affirmative.

Edited by Josh Cron
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(continued from the post above)

(When asked about how Oswald left the depository) Well, there’s been a lot of rumors. When we were outside the building, before we’d gone in, I remember seeing Lee come from the dock area and walk up the street beside the Texas School Book Depository building and there was so many things going on and I saw him as he walked up and he went across Houston Street and I thought he might have been going to get him a sandwich or something so I really didn’t think anything about it. And I lost him in the crowd. I don’t know what happened from there.

(When asked how long after the assassination this was) Oh, five to ten minutes probably… He crossed Houston Street and then started across Elm Street and I turned because someone said something to me and I turned to answer them and then when I turned back and looked in that direction, he was gone.

(When asked if he could have come out the front door of the depository) No.

(When asked how close to Oswald he got) …probably ten to twelve feet… He didn’t look any different or act any different than he did… He had his jacket on…

A jacket, of course, which was "found" in the depository over a week later.

Edited by Josh Cron
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From Frazier's 2002 Oral History for the Sixth Floor:

(After Mack asks him if he noticed anything unusual in the plaza before the shooting) The only thing I can remember that I thought was a little unusual - and maybe it wasn’t - but it was a little unusual to me, I thought the motorcycle policemen who were escorting the President’s car - there was several of them and they were - because they was getting pretty close to getting onto the freeway, and I don’t know how long, how many blocks they had gone in this parade - but they were kind of clowning around, cutting their motorcycles on and off to make them backfire and so forth. I thought that was a little unusual…

Mack then asks Frazier if they were doing this on purpose, to which Frazier replies in the affirmative.

Interesting stuff Josh... thanks.

I wonder if the "on and off again" motorcycles related to a certain time period...

1) as they turned the corner

2) As they straightedned out in fron of the TSBD

3) when the limo slowed to a crawl/stop

Making these sounds of course makes sense to mask gunshots... doing so prior to the motorcade arriving puts that sound into the consicousness as something not threatening ... ??

Was there a supervisor in DPD specific to these motocycle cops who might have suggested such behavior?

Need to go look

DJ

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David, I suggest you encourage Greg Burnham to join in this discussion. Its just possible that some of that may have been related to

operating those big cycles at relatively low speeds, espcially during limo turns and such. Greg would be the one with

the experience to comment on that point.

-- Larry

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  • 2 years later...

Frazier repeats his claim of seeing Oswald after 12:30 in this interview recorded by the Sixth Floor on 7/13/2013.

http://www.c-span.org/video/?313792-1/lee-harvey-oswald-kennedy-assassination

Comments begin at the 34:30 mark.

(When asked if he saw Oswald after the shooting) "I did. This was, oh, I don't know exactly how many minutes later, but the lady I was standing next to - some of the people - Bill Shelley and Billy Lovelady - they went down toward the Triple Underpass. Because before they went down there, a lady come by - a woman came by - and she was crying and she said that somebody has shot the President. And so, we looked bewildered, and I turned to Sarah and she said 'She said somebody has shot the President.' And I said 'I thought that's what she said.' She said 'She did say that.' So we stood there for a few minutes and I walked down to the first step where Billy was standing down there at the bottom of the steps. I looked around and it was just total chaos there. And then from there I started to go down to see if I could find Bill Shelley and Billy Lovelady. And there was so much chaos down there I said, 'Well I better go back to where - back to the steps. And I did. I walked back to the bottom of the steps and then I walked out to the corner of the building right there where Houston comes up the side of the building. And I was talking to someone - it was a lady - and I looked to my left and come walking along the side of the Texas Schoolbook building was Lee Oswald."

Moderator Stephen Fagin: "Walking along this side of the building? Houston Street?"

Frazier: "Yes. Yes. Houston Street. So he'd come around from off the dock there. So he walks up, and I'm talking to this lady. He didn't say anything. And he crosses Houston. I watch him cross Houston as I was talking to the lady. And he gets over to the other side of Houston and then he crosses Elm. And somebody said something to me and I turned - and he was about halfway across the street - and when I turned back he was gone in the crowd. I don't know what happened to him."

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Frazier repeats his claim of seeing Oswald after 12:30 in this interview recorded by the Sixth Floor on 7/13/2013.

http://www.c-span.org/video/?313792-1/lee-harvey-oswald-kennedy-assassination

Comments begin at the 34:30 mark.

(When asked if he saw Oswald after the shooting) "I did. This was, oh, I don't know exactly how many minutes later, but the lady I was standing next to - some of the people - Bill Shelley and Billy Lovelady - they went down toward the Triple Underpass. Because before they went down there, a lady come by - a woman came by - and she was crying and she said that somebody has shot the President. And so, we looked bewildered, and I turned to Sarah and she said 'She said somebody has shot the President.' And I said 'I thought that's what she said.' She said 'She did say that.' So we stood there for a few minutes and I walked down to the first step where Billy was standing down there at the bottom of the steps. I looked around and it was just total chaos there. And then from there I started to go down to see if I could find Bill Shelley and Billy Lovelady. And there was so much chaos down there I said, 'Well I better go back to where - back to the steps. And I did. I walked back to the bottom of the steps and then I walked out to the corner of the building right there where Houston comes up the side of the building. And I was talking to someone - it was a lady - and I looked to my left and come walking along the side of the Texas Schoolbook building was Lee Oswald."

Moderator Stephen Fagin: "Walking along this side of the building? Houston Street?"

Frazier: "Yes. Yes. Houston Street. So he'd come around from off the dock there. So he walks up, and I'm talking to this lady. He didn't say anything. And he crosses Houston. I watch him cross Houston as I was talking to the lady. And he gets over to the other side of Houston and then he crosses Elm. And somebody said something to me and I turned - and he was about halfway across the street - and when I turned back he was gone in the crowd. I don't know what happened to him."

This certainly contradicts Buell Wesley Frazier's testimony to the Warren Commission:

"Mr. BALL - You didn't see the President's car at the time you heard the sound?

Mr. FRAZIER - No, sir; I didn't.

Mr. BALL - But you stood right there, did you?

Mr. FRAZIER - Right. Stood right where I was.

Mr. BALL - And Mr. Shelley was still standing there?

Mr. FRAZIER - Right.

Mr. BALL - And also Billy Lovelady?

Mr. FRAZIER - Yes, sir.

Mr. BALL - The three of you didn't go any place?

Mr. FRAZIER - I believe Billy and them walked down toward that direction but I didn't. I just stood where I was. I hadn't moved at all.

Mr. BALL - Did you see anybody after that come into the Building while you were there?

Mr. FRAZIER - You mean somebody other that didn't work there?

Mr. BALL - A police officer.

Mr. FRAZIER - No, sir; I stood there a few minutes, you know, and some people who worked there; you know normally started to go back into the Building because a lot of us didn't eat our lunch, and so we stared back into the Building and it wasn't but just a few minutes that there were a lot of police officers and so forth all over the Building there.

Mr. BALL - Then you went back into the Building, did you?

Mr. FRAZIER - Right."

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Gary Mack of the Sixth Floor Museum At Dealey Plaza interviewed Buell Wesley Frazier on June 21, 2002 (total running time of 2 hours):

http://www.c-span.org/video/?287933-1/kennedy-assassination-buell-wesley-frazier-part-1

http://www.c-span.org/video/?287933-101/kennedy-assassination-buell-wesley-frazier-part-2

A few notes....

The most interesting parts of the above 2002 interview with Wesley Frazier are when he totally contradicts some of the things he said in 1963 and 1964.

For example:

In the 2002 interview, Frazier actually tells Gary Mack that he saw Lee Harvey Oswald "5 to 10 minutes" AFTER the assassination, as Lee was walking south on Houston Street. Wesley said he then lost Lee in the crowd after Oswald had crossed Houston Street. Frazier said he thought Lee was "going to get him a sandwich or something, so I really didn't think anything about it".

But when we look at Frazier's 11/22/63 affidavit (which was written by Wesley within hours of the assassination), we find this:

"I did not see Lee anymore after about 11:00 AM today [11/22/63], and at that time, we were both working, and we were on the first floor." -- Buell Wesley Frazier

Frazier also completely changed his mind in 2002 about the source of the three gunshots he heard on November 22nd. He told Mack in 2002 that the shots came from "above" him. But in 1964, he told the Warren Commission that the shots came from the railroad tracks on top of the Triple Underpass. Wesley even drew a circle on a Commission exhibit (CE347) to indicate the area where he said he heard the shots coming from:

"These railroad tracks there is a series of them that come up over this, up over this overpass there, and from where I was standing, I say, it is my true opinion, that is what I thought, it sounded like it came from over there, in the railroad tracks." -- Buell Wesley Frazier; 1964 Warren Commission Testimony

So much for 39-year-old recollections, huh?

Maybe it would be better to simply not interview witnesses thirty-nine years after an event has taken place. You just never know what a witness is going to "remember" after so many intervening years.

Such "newer" interviews are interesting to see and listen to, but many of the recollections being recounted by the witness become garbled, semi-incoherent, and inconsistent with things the same witness has said in previous interviews and depositions. And such inconsistency only tends to muddy the waters even more when it comes to investigating the JFK murder case.

I'm guessing that Gary Mack was in a mild state of shock when Wesley Frazier told him on 6/21/02 that he had seen Lee Oswald walking along Houston Street "5 to 10 minutes" after the assassination.

If that were true, of course, it would mean that Oswald did not leave the Texas School Book Depository Building by way of the front entrance, but instead he left via the back door of the building.

I, however, place more faith in what Wes Frazier said on the day of the assassination itself, when he said he did not see Lee Harvey Oswald at all "after about 11:00 AM today".

David Von Pein
January 25, 2010

Edited by David Von Pein
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You put more value to his statement from that day than what was said later.....oh sure.

Fritz wanted him to sign a statement for being a co-conspirator and when he did not he would raise his hand as to hit him. As a 19 year old he was under tremendous pressure.

And once almost home he got pulled back in the DPD and subjected to a polygraph which to this day is nowhere to be seen, now then if you really place value on his statements from that day then you and your mates dig that one out and present it to all of us, then we will see how much value can be put into the statements from that day. And while you are at it, submit some clean transcripts of the HSCA hearings.

Frazier is inconsistent, granted, but your guesswork reeks,

Edited by Bart Kamp
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You put more value to his statement from that day than what was said later.....oh sure.

Fritz wanted him to sign a statement for being a co-conspirator and when he did not he would raise his hand as to hit him. As a 19 year old he was under tremendous pressure.

And once almost home he got pulled back in the DPD and subjected to a polygraph which to this day is nowhere to be seen, now then if you really place value on his statements from that day then you and your mates dig that one out and present it to all of us, then we will see how much value can be put into the statements from that day. And while you are at it, submit some clean transcripts of the HSCA hearings.

Frazier is inconsistent, granted, but your guesswork reeks,

Barto,

I didn't realize that.

Thanks.

It sounds like ol' Buell could use another polygraph test.

Wasn't it assassination witness Judy Johnson, who, according to her daughter on this forum, called BWF a lyin' son of a gun, or words to that effect?

Going from memory here.

--Tommy :sun

Edited by Thomas Graves
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More from the 7/13/2013 interview:

(When asked why he has been reluctant to share his story over the years) "Well, when this all happened, I was terrified. And, some people believe in a conspiracy, and some don't. Well, you can believe whatever you like. This is America. But I knew that if there was people behind this, you'd best keep silent. Not go around talking. Because I didn't want anything to happen to my family."

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