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Lifton and Morningster, nice but no cigar.


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My responses in bold.

Pat,

Where do you get the idea that Dr. McClelland was Burrus' source?

Since McClelland spoke on the record with Dudman, I assumed he had spoken to Burrus as well.

DSL INSERT: Well, you are wrong. Burrus' source was definitely not McClelland. Moreover, you fail to perceive something else: what was important about the Burrus story was not that the throat wound was (supposedly) explained as an exit, but that this was the first story that connected a rear (shoulder) entry, which no Dallas doctor or nurse reported, with the supposed "exit" at the front of the throat. That's what makes the Burrus story special--it was the first official attempt to "float" the back-to-front "transiting neck trajectory in the public record. You appear to have missed that. You also apparently missed the fact that Burrus's story was datelined "Bethesda, Maryland." (See Chapter 7 of B.E.) END DSL INSERT

I interviewed Burrus at length--in person, in New York City--in 1977 or 1978. It was all tape recorded and I spent an hour or more with him, and then spent hours transcribing it Let me assure you that Dr. McClelland was NOT Burrus' source. (Where are you getting that idea from??)

Furthermore, the person who was Burrus' source --and I am doing this from memory, today, in 2012--was providing Burrus with authoritative information about the Bethesda autopsy conclusion. The source was either Dr. Clark or, more likely, Dr. Tom Shires. One or the other, and I have a sheaf full of notes about this, and about the identity of a third party who (I learned, from Burrus) knew who the source was, and who I was attempting to contact. (But there were 100 other things going on at the time, and I never did.)

The record indicates that Elmer Moore spoke to a number of the Parkland doctors, and used the autopsy report to convince them the neck wound had been an exit, not an entrance. He told them all the same thing. McClelland was one of these doctors.

DSL INSERT: The most important thing about the Elmer Moore visit is that he was showing the Dallas doctors an autopsy report that reported two rear entry wounds, neither of which were observed (or reported) at Parkland Hospital. END INSERT.

In addition, this article was either the same one--or within a day of the one--that reported the curb shot, and raised the possibility that a single bullet passed back to front through Kennedy's neck, and then went on to strike Connally. (Yes, in mid-December, 1963--and that was either in the Dallas Times Herald or the Dallas Morning News. Again, the Single Bullet Theory was already formulated, conceptually, and was being "floated" in this news account).

Now, focusing on McClelland. . . :

For reasons I do not understand, you are either misreporting or misunderstanding what McClelland (a) told the Warren Commission, when under oath; and (b ) told Dudman and (c ) told me, when I interviewed him, on camera, in 1989.

Not at all. What a strange charge. I have never disputed that McClelland came to believe the wound was on the far back of Kennedy's head. His earliest statements, however, do not support that. His statement to Dudman that "As far as I am concerned, there is no reason to suspect that any shots came from the front," is, in my impression, thoroughly at odds with his subsequent testimony.

On November 22, McClelland said the President died of a gunshot wound of the left temple. I have always assumed that sentence applied to the bullet entrance wound on JFK's head. (Certainly, he was not referring to an exit wound!)

Your assumption is, in my opinion, 100% incorrect. Clark--the expert--inspected the head wound and thought it was either a wound of both entrance and exit, or an exit for a bullet entering Kennedy's throat. No one else at Parkland assumed the bullet creating this wound entered elsewhere on the skull, or claimed to see such an entrance.** They saw one wound, and one wound only. Unless you believe that McClelland, and McClelland alone, observed a large wound on Kennedy's left temple, the most logical assumption then is that he confused his right with his left.

**DSL INSERT: See the end of this post (at "MARKER AAA") where I have listed those doctors who specifically stated--either to the press, or in their testimony--that they believed the wound at the back of the head was an exit. To hold this belief, they obviously had to believe there was an entry wound situated at the front, whether it was the throat wound, or somewhere on the head. You conveniently ignore this "rear exit" evidence, and its impliations for a frontal entry. END DSL INSERT

The thrust of the Dudman stories, in mid-December, was that one or more Secret Service agents were visiting Parkland Hospital and showing the Dallas doctors the Bethesda autopsy report, in order to stop them from continuing to state that Kennedy was struck from the front. This is obvious--and its part of the public record. That's what Dudman's story is all about.

Yep. Moore tried to get them to agree that the throat wound was an exit. There is no evidence whatsoever, however, to indicate that he tried to get them to change their opinions regarding the head wound. Nor that Specter tried to get them change their opinions regarding the head wound for their Warren Commission testimony. The Parkland/Bethesda split which you subsequently identified had apparently gone unnoticed.**

** DSL INSERT: You don't know that Specter wasn't thoroughly aware of it. You're hiding behind the word "apparently". (In fact, I do indeed believe that Specter became aware that something was wrong, either the autopsy report, or the body, and I'm referring here to the two detailed memos he wrote in late April, 1964 and May. See Chapter 22 of B.E. for a discussion; also Doug Horne focused on these same two memos.)

When under oath during his Warren Commission deposition, McClelland was describing, in detail, the bullet exit wound at the rear of the President's head.

In the fall of 1988, he described the same bullet exit wound when interviewed by Stanhope Gould and Sylvia Chase in their interview of McClelland for their KRON-TV documentary. Six months later, in 1989, when I (and Pat Valentino) interviewed him, on camera, he described in detail the same bullet exit wound at the rear of JFK's head.

You're behaving like a philosopher who is playing games with the English language, because you apparently don't like what's been stated in plain English.

I beg to differ. We have a bunch of people witnessing something, and then describing it in different ways. Many of them, over the years, contradicted themselves. The only way to understand what really happened then is to analyze the sum of the witness statements. Cherry-picking a few here and there, or prioritizing these statements based upon one's personal connection to them, might lead one to a desired result, but not to where the judgment of history should ultimately reside.

In the face of a plethora of evidence that the President's body was intercepted--and the wounds altered--here you are whining and attempting to impeach McClelland's testimony by asserting as a fact that McClelland couldn't have observed what he said he did.

From your post: "Since Kennedy was by all lreports lying on his back, it is impoossible to understand how McClelland could look down into a wound on the back of Kennedy's head..."

Yet he testified, and quite explicitly, that he could see exactly what he testifed to.

And yet a number of his co-workers--Carrico and Jenkins come to mind--said he couldn't have seen what he said he saw... Which leads us back to credibility--and the fact McClelland ORIGINALLY claimed the wound was of the left temple. **

** DSL Insert: I've interviewed Carrico (and so did Stanhope Gould (former one of Cronkite's key producers, at CBS), in 1988, on camera); and I (and Pat Valentino) spent a substantial time with Jenkins (in January, 1983). Both were very squirrely individuals--especially Jenkins, who gave me a small speech about how Kennedy "let the boys down" at the Bay of Pigs. (And let's not forget Carrico who, when confronted with the X-ray evidence that showed wounds clearly different than what he described, tore off his microphone and stomped out of the interview). Furthermore, Jenkins daughter --who approached me at a social gathering in Los Angeles in 1985, and taunted me over being "obsessed" with the Kennedy assassination--told me that she and her father drank champaign on anniversaries to JFK's assassination. And you are taking these people--and their opinion of McClelland (who clearly posed a "problem" of sorts) seriously? Oh pleez. . .

Why should anyone care about your hypotheses--and conjecture(s)--about what McClelland could "not have seen" when he testified under oath, in March, 1964, as to what he did in fact see??

It's not my hypothesis, but the hypothesis of those with him in the room.

For reasons I don't understand, you have spent hundreds of hours of your time writing tendentious posts and text attempting to claim the historical record is something other than it is.

For you, the historical record stopped with the publication of Best Evidence. (DSL: That's absurd!) For me, it continued after. It's amazing to me that someone claiming to have such concern for the historical record refuses to acknowledge that the vast majority of Parkland and Bethesda witnesses rejected your body alteration theory, and that very few of these witnesses ever even identified themselves as conspiracy theorists.** McClelland is, of course, one of these few. And yet, the notes to a 1969 interview with McClelland, found in the Weisberg Archives, reflect that he felt nothing but disgust for the likes of Lane and Garrison at that time, and far preferred the likes of Arlen Specter. So...let's see...IF McClelland felt sure--I mean 100% positive--that the wound he saw was an exit wound on the far back of Kennedy's head, how is it that he was not a conspiracy theorist in 1969? I mean, how can that be? That's the kind of question I've been willing to ask, that apparently you have not.

** DSL INSERT: This is a false argument. (Do you think the doctos, perhaps, should have taken a vote?) Do you know how many witnesses I interviewed--with Pat Valentino--on camera, who rejected the autopsy photographs as bearing any true relationship to the wounds they saw? And I quoted them all in the Epilogue to the 1982 Edition of BEST EVIDENCE, which was then includeded in the 1988 edition (which published the autopsy photos for the first time anywhere), and the 1993 New American Library (mass paperback) edition. Do you really believe it is reasonable to expect any of them to come out and explicitly endorse a body-alteration theory?? Get real. END INSERT.

Of course, you're entitled to do this--but I hope people reading your posts understand the game you are playing.

I'm not the one playing games, David. It is my contention, and has been my contention since 2004**, that the medical evidence is the key to understanding the assassination, and re-opening its investigation. And I have tried my best to explain why I know this to be true. ***

** DSL Note: I'm glad you realized this in 2004. As you can read in B.E., I had my epiphany on this very subject on October 23, 1966, when I realized the evidence pointed to the fact that JFK's wounds had been altered prior to autopsy; and then shared my insights with Wesley Liebeler, who was then a UCLA Law Professor, and was teaching a seminar on the Warren Commission (which I was attending). And Professor Liebeler was sufficiently impressed with that same evidence (that JFK's body had been altered) that he wrote the 13 page memo he did, on that subject, on November 8, 1966, and then distributed it to all former members of the WC, the staff, the White House, and RFK, on November 24, 1966. Its really too bad that you weren't around 38 years earlier, so you could have re-assured us (as you apparently are trying to do here on the London Forum) that there is really nothing wrong with the medical evidence--its just a matter of properly interpreting the record.

**DSL INSERT: You have a most peculiar view of the medical evidence--one which ignores all the data indicating that the "medical evidence" (i.e., the body) was altered. It is within that very constricted framework that you engage in your "analysis." This is like playing a card game, and ignoring the evidence that there are a dozen jokers in the deck. END DSL INSERT.

One other thing: for anyone who wants a vivid description of the wound at the back of President Kennedy's head, just see Chapter 13, of Best Evidence, and the account of Dr. Peters, who described to me, in January, 1967, his vivid recollection that (a) it was size of a "hen's egg" and (b ) how he could see the occipital lobes of the brain resting on the foramen magnum (the hole in the base of the skull, through which the spinal cord enters and goes to the brain.

I read a 1981 interview of Peters just the other day. He said he'd been mistaken when he said such things to you. He said many similar things over the years.

DSL RETORT: FYI: I interviewed Peters in November 1966, by phone, as reported word-for-word accurately in the opening pages of Chapter 13 (wherein he told me that the head wound was at the bottom back of the head, and that he could see the occipital lobes of the brain resting against the foramen magnum). Then I interviewed him, in person, in 1983 (with Pat Valentino), showing him the autopsy photographs--which he had never seen before. That interview was tape recorded (and is quoted accurately in the 1982 Epilogue to BEST EVIDENCE). Then, I interviewed him again, in 1989, this time on camera. At no time did he ever tell me that he was "mistaken." So I don't know what the heck you are talking about, I'm hearing this for the first time, and I'd really appreciate it if you would either post the item which is your source, or email it to me. Thanks. DSL END DSL RETORT.

Here's my quesiton to you, Pat Speer: Why to you keep playing these games, and ignoring the accounts of the witnesses who were there, and attempting to substitute, instead, your various theories, conjectures, and hypotheses as to why they couldn't have seen what they testified they observed?

Do you really believe your conjectures about what this or that witness could "not have seen" really trump the sworn statements of what they did in fact see?

Do you really believe you can ignore the statements of these witnesses when they said you got it wrong? I mean, let's get real here.** You don't trust the Parkland witnesses as unimpeachable sources of truth any more than I do. Let's look at McClelland. He is on record as saying he believes the autopsy photos are authentic. But do you believe him? Of course not. He has also said that he saw nothing at Parkland which would convince him the fatal shot came from the front, but that the back and to the left movement of Kennedy's head in the Zapruder film had nevertheless convinced him that the fatal shot came from the front. So...do you trust him on this? I suspect not.

DSL FINAL RETORT: No, Pat; it is you who should "get real." Do you really think it was my job to persuade the Dallas doctors of my "overall theory" --or, more precisely, my "political theory" of the Kennedy assassination? FYI: one asked me, somewhat saracastically, in 1966, when (as a UCLA graduate student) I called for a telephone interview, whether I thought that perhaps Earl Warren was put in charge of the investigation because that had been suggested by the Daily Worker (the newspaper of the Communist Party). In 1982, Jenkins gave me a small speech (as noted above) about Kennedy and his failure at the Bay of Pigs. Overall, a very conservative group. And I was interested in only one thing: what they observed on November 22, 1963--not whether they agreed (or disagreed) with my "theory of the crime," which of course flowed from an accurate appraisal and analysis of these critical observations. History will decide what happened in Dallas based (in part) on their observations of Kennedy's wounds, and the circumstances of JFK's treatment at Parkland Hospital, not on their collective political opinions about what they (or some of them) would prefer to believe happened (or did not happen) in Dallas on that day.

DSL

8/10/12; 1:45 AM

Los Angeles, California

MARKER AAA (referring to an earlier point, above, in this post).

Pat: You keep ignoring the fact that the Dallas doctors are on record--both in interviews conducted within a few days of the assassination, as well as under oath before the Warren Commission--that it was their opinion that a bullet exited from the rear of the head.

Let me lay it out here, from BEST EVIDENCE:

Are you not aware of the fact that one doctor after another believed that a bullet exited from the rear of Kennedy's skull? And that this pervaded the accounts published in the press in the days immediately following President Kennedy's murder?

And what about the testimony of the Dallas doctors in their Warren Commission depositions. As I wrote in BEST EVIDENCE (Chapter 13, on the head wounding):

Quoting from B.E.:

Indeed, six Dallas doctors testified the wound in the rear of the head was an exit wound; and a seventh, Dr. Kemp Clark, said it ould be an exit wound, but it was also possible the wound was "tangential." Dr. Jones testified it 'appeared to be an exit wound in the posterior portion of the skull'; (6 WCH 56)); Dr. Perry referred to it as "avulsive"; (6 WCH 11)) Dr. Jenkins, referring to the region as "exploded," said "I would interpret it being a wound of exit" (1 WCH 50) and Dr. Akin said: "I assume that the right oipito-parietal region was the exit." (6 WCH 67) UNQUOTE

How can you possibly ignore such explicit data? And there is more.

I then wrote two paragraphs laying out the testimony or public statements of those doctors who joined wound at the front of the throat (which they thought was an entry) with the wound at the back of the head (assumed to be an exit) and who then postulated that a bullet had entered at the President's throat, somehow was deflected up the spinal column, and then exited at the rear of the head.

One was Dr. Peters, in my November, 1966 telephone interview with him, as quoted in Chapter 13 of BEST EVIDENCE (see page 317 of the Macmillan or Carrol and Graf edition):

"I was trying to think how he could have had a hole in his neck and a hole in the occiput, and the only answer we could think [of] was perhaps the bullet had gone in through the front, hit the bony spinal column, and exited through the back of the head, since a wound of exit is always bigger than a wound of entry."

Next on the list was Dr. Malcolm Perry. And there I quoted from interviews he gave on Saturday, November 23, to John Geddie of the Dallas Morning News, and Herbert Blak, Medical Editor of the Boston Globe. Quoting these accounts (directly from page 317 of BEST EVIDENCE) --Now quoting:

Geddie reported: "The head wound, he [Perry] added, appeared to be 'an exit wound' caused when the bullet passed out." (Dallas Morning News, 11/24/63);

To Black, Perry acknowledged it was peculiar that "rather than entering" from behind, the bullet exited "despite the fact [that] the assassin shot from above down on to the President." But he assured Black that the wound he saw on the head was an exit."

"We know that the big damage is at the point of exit." He (Perry) offered this explanation: "It may have been that the President was looking up or sideways with his head thrown bak when the bullet or bullets struck him." (Boston Globe, 11/24/63)

Now here's my question, Pat Speer: I'm quoting you data from the record, the existing journalistic and testimonial record--and yet you come along, some 48 years later, and simply ignore it, and blithely mistate the record with these glib false statements.

Let me go back again, and re-state your false statement: ""None of them described this wound as an entrance wound for a bullet exiting elsewhere on the skull."

Well, if they all seemed to agree there was an exit wound at the back of the head, where do you think they must have thought it entered??

I think its time you set aside your cherished (and mistaken) beliefs--which apparently affect the way you interpret the record--and just look at the data. It also would help if would stop treating the doctors' opinions as if this was a legislative process, in which they could be "lobbied" to believe this or that, so you'll go forward 20-30 years, and quote what they said (or claimed to believe) decades after the event, and after my book was published, and try to substitute that as "best evidence." I have news for you: it ain't.

These critical witnesses said what they said--to newspaper reporters within days, in the medical reports they wrote, and in their testimony. What I did in BEST EVIDENCE was demonstrate that that record was bifurcated. That what was observed at Parkland by the Dallas doctors was seriously different than what was reported at Bethesda. I also joined that with the clear evidene of interception (i.e., the broken chain of possession on the body) and the FBI report that the Bethesda doctors recognized that it was "apparent" that there had been "surgery of the head area, namely, in the top of the skull"--and said so, in plain English, in front of two FBI agents, who then included that statement in their report.

You have been attempting to "explain it all away" with a series of tendentious arguments concerning psychology and perception. But the facts speak for themselves, and the bifurcated record will not go away. Its an inherent part of the historical record of the Kennedy assassination. I have no doubt that BEST EVIDENE will stand the test of time, and that the answer to "what happened" to the body will lead to the intellectual authors of this crime.

And by the way, and getting back to specifics, and before leaving the topic of the wound at the left temple: I ought to mention one other witness, one who I did not include in BEST EVIDENCE because he was not in the room, but who is a very important witness, and that is Dr. Dave Stewart. Stewart is important because he knew Dr. Perry very well, and is a source of information as to what Perry said, and believed, on 11/22 and in the days following. Stewart told the Nashville, Tenn Banner (cira 1967) of the left temporal wound, based not on what he personally saw, but on what he was told (by Perry). I then interviewed him in 1982 (by phone); and then in 1989, Pat Valentino and I flew to Tennessee and did a very detailed (and professionally filmed) interview with him at his home Without getting into the details just now, you can add Stewart to the list of those who believe (in Stewart''s case, because of what he was told by Perry) that JFK was struck from the front, and in the left temple. (Stay tuned).

For now, I have one simple request: I wish you would quit saying that the Dallas doctors did not say that there was an exit wound at the back of the head--because that is obviously not true. When you make such statements, you are posting false information on the Internet in a discussion group that is read probably all over the world. I would think that regardless of what theories and hypotheses you entertain about the Kennedy assassination, you would not want to be in the position of spreading false information on such an important matter, especially when it so easily proved to be demonstrably false.

DSL

8/17/12; 1:30 AM PDT

Los Angeles, California

Edited by David Lifton
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My responses in bold.

Once again, Pat, I think you miss the forest for the trees. The McClelland drawing for Thompson was in 1966 shows bones sprung open in a manner required by an exiting bullet.

There is no McClelland drawing for Thompson. Ask Thompson. While the drawing was based upon McClelland's WC testimony, Thompson never spoke to McClelland about it. Ask Doug Horne, who was dedicated enough to read Thompson's book and see that Philip Johnson was credited for the drawing, not McClelland. Now ask yourself, if McClelland has been claiming for twenty years that he'd created a drawing that he in fact never drew, how much can we rely upon his other statements?

It matters little that McClelland loved Specter. He can say what he wants about where the shot came from; the drawing itself is definitive.

The drawing that was made by a college kid based on the testimony of a man testifying in direct opposition to his earliest statements? The drawing that McClelland later claimed was inaccurate, and incomplete?

As for your contention that missing scalp is evidence of an entrance wound,

Go back and read my post. This is not my contention. It is Forensic Pathology 101.

you are going to have to argue with Humes about that, because he stated in the autopsy that the head wound, chiefly paretial, was devoid of both bone and scalp.

There is no need for argument. Humes is dead, and his opinions on Forensic Pathology wouldn't carry much weight anyhow.

This large wound was therefore an entrance wound? That's a new one for me.

It shouldn't be. 6.5 mm FMJ ammunition was infamous for leaving gutter wounds of both entrance and exit on skulls. I've been pointing this out for years. I have several chapters devoted to discussing this fact.

That bone blasted out by a high velocity bullet would not take scalp with it is utter nonesense,

Says who? Scalp tears at the exit. Look it up.

and contradicts the Dallas observation that both one and scalp were missing in the rear defect.

It doesn't contradict it all. Why do you think Clark thought it was a gutter wound?

Why do you suppose Tom Robinson had to place a piece of rubber to patch the hold in the back of the head? Had there been scalp there this would not have been necessary.

Robinson didn't put the head together. He only helped at the end. If there was a hole on the back of the head at the end, it only means that the man who put the head together did his job correctly, which was to make sure the large defect was in a location that could be hidden by a pillow.

I stand by my observations that McClelland accurately described what he saw before the WC and has maintained that picture of the wounding ever since. I stand by my conviction that McClelland was influenced by the official autopsy and wanted to avoid controversy.

You can stand by the moon being cheese, but it doesn't make it true. Why not contact McClelland, and get him to say, for the record, that his comments to Dudman and others, in which he indicated he was satisfied the shots came from behind, were lies, and that he knew all along the large head wound was an exit on the far back of Kennedy's head for a bullet entering the front of his head?

He may have loved Specter but such was a necessary concession. I mean, what doctor is going to believe a murdered President would have a slipshod autopsy-- a deliberately false record of the way he was killed? It was just too insulting to the medical profession to even think such a thing.

And yet the Clark Panel had no problem believing such a thing. And yet the HSCA FPP had no problem believing such a thing.

You have also misquoted Clark. He gave the tangential wound as only one option.

Not exactly. He testified that he'd felt it was a tangential wound.

Dr. William Kemp Clark: "I was called by Dr. Perry because the President... had sustained a brain wound. On my arrival, the resuscitative efforts, the tracheostomy, the administration of chest tubes to relieve any...possibility of air being in the pleural space, the electrocardiogram had been hooked up, blood and fluids were being administered by Dr. Perry and Dr. Baxter. It was apparent that the President had sustained a lethal wound. A missile had gone in or out of the back of his head, causing extensive lacerations and loss of brain tissue. Shortly after I arrived, the patient, the President, lost his heart action by the electrocardiogram, his heart action had stopped. We attempted resuscitative measures of his heart, including closed chest cardiac massage, but to no avail." (When asked to describe the course of the bullet through the head) "We were too busy to be absolutely sure of the track, but the back of his head...Principally on his right side, towards the right side...The head wound could have been either the exit wound from the neck or it could have been a tangential wound, as it was simply a large, gaping loss of tissue."

Mr. SPECTER - What, if anything, did you say then in the course of that press conference?

Dr. CLARK - I described the President's wound in his head in very much the same way as I have described it here. I was asked if this wound was an entrance wound, an exit wound, or what, and I said it could be an exit wound, but I felt it was a tangential wound.

I quoted him accurately above. Go back and read the transcript of 11/22/63 at Parkland. And since it is clear cerebellum extruded from the wound, I will bet the farm the wound extended low enough behind the ears to lacerate the cerebellum.

That's not clear at all. Most of those once claiming to see cerebellum would later claim they'd been wrong.

Of course, I have no farm, but I'll put my Harley on the line on that point.

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As my discussion with David has become unwieldy and confusing, I'll try to pull some of his recent comments out of his last post, and respond to them here.

DSL: Burrus' source was definitely not McClelland. Moreover, you fail to perceive something else: what was important about the Burrus story was not that the throat wound was (supposedly) explained as an exit, but that this was the first story that connected a rear (shoulder) entry, which no Dallas doctor or nurse reported, with the supposed "exit" at the front of the throat. That's what makes the Burrus story special--it was the first official attempt to "float" the back-to-front "transiting neck trajectory in the public record. You appear to have missed that. You also apparently missed the fact that Burrus's story was datelined "Bethesda, Maryland." (See Chapter 7 of B.E.) END DSL INSERT

PS: So why be coy? If you spoke to Burrus, and he told you the name of his source, then why not just tell us? And what's with this stuff about someone floating a story? Are you really of the opinion they were gonna re-write the autopsy report if people rejected Burrus' story? Is that what you're saying?

DSL: See the end of this post (at "MARKER AAA") where I have listed those doctors who specifically stated--either to the press, or in their testimony--that they believed the wound at the back of the head was an exit. To hold this belief, they obviously had to believe there was an entry wound situated at the front, whether it was the throat wound, or somewhere on the head. You conveniently ignore this "rear exit" evidence, and its impliations for a frontal entry.

PS: I ignore no such thing. I have chapters devoted to reporting the statements of the Parkland witnesses. Both their earlier statements, which suggested the wound was on the back of the head, and their subsequent statements, in which they rejected the idea their early recollections proved the autopsy photos fakes.

Earlier statement by PS: Moore tried to get them to agree that the throat wound was an exit. There is no evidence whatsoever, however, to indicate that he tried to get them to change their opinions regarding the head wound. Nor that Specter tried to get them change their opinions regarding the head wound for their Warren Commission testimony. The Parkland/Bethesda split which you subsequently identified had apparently gone unnoticed.

DSL: You don't know that Specter wasn't thoroughly aware of it. You're hiding behind the word "apparently". (In fact, I do indeed believe that Specter became aware that something was wrong, either the autopsy report, or the body, and I'm referring here to the two detailed memos he wrote in late April, 1964 and May. See Chapter 22 of B.E. for a discussion; also Doug Horne focused on these same two memos.)

PS: How is my being accurate "hiding?" There is no evidence Specter noticed that the Parkland witnesses were describing the head wound differently than the Bethesda witnesses, and had any concerns about this. The memos to which you refer discuss the back wound, and show that the back wound was his main concern.

DSL: I've interviewed Carrico (and so did Stanhope Gould (former one of Cronkite's key producers, at CBS), in 1988, on camera); and I (and Pat Valentino) spent a substantial time with Jenkins (in January, 1983). Both were very squirrely individuals--especially Jenkins, who gave me a small speech about how Kennedy "let the boys down" at the Bay of Pigs. (And let's not forget Carrico who, when confronted with the X-ray evidence that showed wounds clearly different than what he described, tore off his microphone and stomped out of the interview). Furthermore, Jenkins daughter --who approached me at a social gathering in Los Angeles in 1985, and taunted me over being "obsessed" with the Kennedy assassination--told me that she and her father drank champaign on anniversaries to JFK's assassination. And you are taking these people--and their opinion of McClelland (who clearly posed a "problem" of sorts) seriously? Oh pleez. . .

PS: It's amazing how the character of a witness in your book is directly related to how much support they offer for...your book.

Earlier statement by PS: For you, the historical record stopped with the publication of Best Evidence. For me, it continued after. It's amazing to me that someone claiming to have such concern for the historical record refuses to acknowledge that the vast majority of Parkland and Bethesda witnesses rejected your body alteration theory, and that very few of these witnesses ever even identified themselves as conspiracy theorists.** McClelland is, of course, one of these few. And yet, the notes to a 1969 interview with McClelland, found in the Weisberg Archives, reflect that he felt nothing but disgust for the likes of Lane and Garrison at that time, and far preferred the likes of Arlen Specter. So...let's see...IF McClelland felt sure--I mean 100% positive--that the wound he saw was an exit wound on the far back of Kennedy's head, how is it that he was not a conspiracy theorist in 1969? I mean, how can that be? That's the kind of question I've been willing to ask, that apparently you have not.

DSL: This is a false argument. (Do you think the doctors, perhaps, should have taken a vote?) Do you know how many witnesses I interviewed--with Pat Valentino--on camera, who rejected the autopsy photographs as bearing any true relationship to the wounds they saw? And I quoted them all in the Epilogue to the 1982 Edition of BEST EVIDENCE, which was then included in the 1988 edition (which published the autopsy photos for the first time anywhere), and the 1993 New American Library (mass paperback) edition. Do you really believe it is reasonable to expect any of them to come out and explicitly endorse a body-alteration theory?? Get real.

PS: In other words, you have no answer for my question, and can't explain how it is that so many of the doctors that you propose saw conclusive proof of a conspiracy, failed to suspect a conspiracy.

DSL: As you can read in B.E., I had my epiphany on this very subject on October 23, 1966, when I realized the evidence pointed to the fact that JFK's wounds had been altered prior to autopsy; and then shared my insights with Wesley Liebeler, who was then a UCLA Law Professor, and was teaching a seminar on the Warren Commission (which I was attending). And Professor Liebeler was sufficiently impressed with that same evidence (that JFK's body had been altered) that he wrote the 13 page memo he did, on that subject, on November 8, 1966, and then distributed it to all former members of the WC, the staff, the White House, and RFK, on November 24, 1966. Its really too bad that you weren't around 38 years earlier, so you could have re-assured us (as you apparently are trying to do here on the London Forum) that there is really nothing wrong with the medical evidence--its just a matter of properly interpreting the record.

PS: Yes, it's really too bad. The fact is, however, that whatever breakthroughs I may or may not have made were only made possible by the efforts of men like you and Groden. And for that I thank you.

DSL: You have a most peculiar view of the medical evidence--one which ignores all the data indicating that the "medical evidence" (i.e., the body) was altered. It is within that very constricted framework that you engage in your "analysis." This is like playing a card game, and ignoring the evidence that there are a dozen jokers in the deck.

PS: I don't ignore the evidence. I have studied it intensely, and your conclusions don't pass my smell test for a variety of reasons, but chiefly because the available evidence--the evidence you claim has been altered--suggests that Kennedy was shot by more than one shooter. It just doesn't make any sense to me that they would alter the evidence to suggest there'd been more than one shooter.

DSL: FYI: I interviewed Peters in November 1966, by phone, as reported word-for-word accurately in the opening pages of Chapter 13 (wherein he told me that the head wound was at the bottom back of the head, and that he could see the occipital lobes of the brain resting against the foramen magnum). Then I interviewed him, in person, in 1983 (with Pat Valentino), showing him the autopsy photographs--which he had never seen before. That interview was tape recorded (and is quoted accurately in the 1982 Epilogue to BEST EVIDENCE). Then, I interviewed him again, in 1989, this time on camera. At no time did he ever tell me that he was "mistaken." So I don't know what the heck you are talking about, I'm hearing this for the first time, and I'd really appreciate it if you would either post the item which is your source, or email it to me. Thanks. DSL

PS: A transcript of the interview of Peters for the Boston Globe is in the Weisberg Archives, and accessible online. In this interview he makes it clear that the wound as he recalled it was at the top of the back of the head, and that he looked down into the skull to see the cerebellum. He then admits he'd been wrong, and that he actually hadn't seen cerebellum.

Earlier statement by PS: Do you really believe you can ignore the statements of these witnesses when they said you got it wrong? I mean, let's get real here.** You don't trust the Parkland witnesses as unimpeachable sources of truth any more than I do. Let's look at McClelland. He is on record as saying he believes the autopsy photos are authentic. But do you believe him? Of course not. He has also said that he saw nothing at Parkland which would convince him the fatal shot came from the front, but that the back and to the left movement of Kennedy's head in the Zapruder film had nevertheless convinced him that the fatal shot came from the front. So...do you trust him on this? I suspect not.

DSL: Pat; it is you who should "get real." Do you really think it was my job to persuade the Dallas doctors of my "overall theory" --or, more precisely, my "political theory" of the Kennedy assassination? FYI: one asked me, somewhat saracastically, in 1966, when (as a UCLA graduate student) I called for a telephone interview, whether I thought that perhaps Earl Warren was put in charge of the investigation because that had been suggested by the Daily Worker (the newspaper of the Communist Party). In 1982, Jenkins gave me a small speech (as noted above) about Kennedy and his failure at the Bay of Pigs. Overall, a very conservative group. And I was interested in only one thing: what they observed on November 22, 1963--not whether they agreed (or disagreed) with my "theory of the crime," which of course flowed from an accurate appraisal and analysis of these critical observations. History will decide what happened in Dallas based (in part) on their observations of Kennedy's wounds, and the circumstances of JFK's treatment at Parkland Hospital, not on their collective political opinions about what they (or some of them) would prefer to believe happened (or did not happen) in Dallas on that day.

PS: Thank you for confirming one of my theories. While many CTs see the Parkland witnesses largely as victims, and think these poor voiceless people were liberated by men such as yourself, the fact is, you and no doubt many others feel mostly contempt for them.

Edited by Pat Speer
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My responses in bold.

MARKER AAA (referring to an earlier point, above, in this post).

Pat: You keep ignoring the fact that the Dallas doctors are on record--both in interviews conducted within a few days of the assassination, as well as under oath before the Warren Commission--that it was their opinion that a bullet exited from the rear of the head.

Let me lay it out here, from BEST EVIDENCE:

Are you not aware of the fact that one doctor after another believed that a bullet exited from the rear of Kennedy's skull? And that this pervaded the accounts published in the press in the days immediately following President Kennedy's murder?

And what about the testimony of the Dallas doctors in their Warren Commission depositions. As I wrote in BEST EVIDENCE (Chapter 13, on the head wounding):

Quoting from B.E.:

Indeed, six Dallas doctors testified the wound in the rear of the head was an exit wound; and a seventh, Dr. Kemp Clark, said it ould be an exit wound, but it was also possible the wound was "tangential." Dr. Jones testified it 'appeared to be an exit wound in the posterior portion of the skull'; (6 WCH 56)); Dr. Perry referred to it as "avulsive"; (6 WCH 11)) Dr. Jenkins, referring to the region as "exploded," said "I would interpret it being a wound of exit" (1 WCH 50) and Dr. Akin said: "I assume that the right oipito-parietal region was the exit." (6 WCH 67) UNQUOTE

How can you possibly ignore such explicit data? And there is more.

I then wrote two paragraphs laying out the testimony or public statements of those doctors who joined wound at the front of the throat (which they thought was an entry) with the wound at the back of the head (assumed to be an exit) and who then postulated that a bullet had entered at the President's throat, somehow was deflected up the spinal column, and then exited at the rear of the head.

One was Dr. Peters, in my November, 1966 telephone interview with him, as quoted in Chapter 13 of BEST EVIDENCE (see page 317 of the Macmillan or Carrol and Graf edition):

"I was trying to think how he could have had a hole in his neck and a hole in the occiput, and the only answer we could think [of] was perhaps the bullet had gone in through the front, hit the bony spinal column, and exited through the back of the head, since a wound of exit is always bigger than a wound of entry."

Next on the list was Dr. Malcolm Perry. And there I quoted from interviews he gave on Saturday, November 23, to John Geddie of the Dallas Morning News, and Herbert Blak, Medical Editor of the Boston Globe. Quoting these accounts (directly from page 317 of BEST EVIDENCE) --Now quoting:

Geddie reported: "The head wound, he [Perry] added, appeared to be 'an exit wound' caused when the bullet passed out." (Dallas Morning News, 11/24/63);

To Black, Perry acknowledged it was peculiar that "rather than entering" from behind, the bullet exited "despite the fact [that] the assassin shot from above down on to the President." But he assured Black that the wound he saw on the head was an exit."

"We know that the big damage is at the point of exit." He (Perry) offered this explanation: "It may have been that the President was looking up or sideways with his head thrown bak when the bullet or bullets struck him." (Boston Globe, 11/24/63)

Now here's my question, Pat Speer: I'm quoting you data from the record, the existing journalistic and testimonial record--and yet you come along, some 48 years later, and simply ignore it, and blithely mistate the record with these glib false statements.

Let me go back again, and re-state your false statement: ""None of them described this wound as an entrance wound for a bullet exiting elsewhere on the skull."

Read it again, David. It's the truth. None of them described the large head wound as an entrance wound for a bullet exiting elsewhere on the skull. I made this statement to refute the claim McClelland was speaking of an entrance wound when he said the wound was "of the left temple."

Well, if they all seemed to agree there was an exit wound at the back of the head, where do you think they must have thought it entered??

They thought the large wound was either an exit for the bullet entering the neck or a wound of both entrance and exit. None of them said anything about searching for an entrance on the front of the head, etc...

I think its time you set aside your cherished (and mistaken) beliefs--which apparently affect the way you interpret the record--and just look at the data. It also would help if would stop treating the doctors' opinions as if this was a legislative process, in which they could be "lobbied" to believe this or that, so you'll go forward 20-30 years, and quote what they said (or claimed to believe) decades after the event, and after my book was published, and try to substitute that as "best evidence." I have news for you: it ain't.

Sorry, David, it is. Cherry-picked statements and testimony about an event can't hold a candle to what people have to say when confronted with photographic evidence of that event. How many of the most prominent back-of-the-head witnesses have publicly called the autopsy photos fakes, or totally at odds with what they remembered, and stuck by it after viewing the originals?

These critical witnesses said what they said--to newspaper reporters within days, in the medical reports they wrote, and in their testimony. What I did in BEST EVIDENCE was demonstrate that that record was bifurcated. That what was observed at Parkland by the Dallas doctors was seriously different than what was reported at Bethesda. I also joined that with the clear evidene of interception (i.e., the broken chain of possession on the body) and the FBI report that the Bethesda doctors recognized that it was "apparent" that there had been "surgery of the head area, namely, in the top of the skull"--and said so, in plain English, in front of two FBI agents, who then included that statement in their report.

You have been attempting to "explain it all away" with a series of tendentious arguments concerning psychology and perception. But the facts speak for themselves, and the bifurcated record will not go away. Its an inherent part of the historical record of the Kennedy assassination. I have no doubt that BEST EVIDENCE will stand the test of time, and that the answer to "what happened" to the body will lead to the intellectual authors of this crime.

And I have no doubt that its time has passed, much as the time has passed for Six Seconds in Dallas. Important books, but not the last word.

And by the way, and getting back to specifics, and before leaving the topic of the wound at the left temple: I ought to mention one other witness, one who I did not include in BEST EVIDENCE because he was not in the room, but who is a very important witness, and that is Dr. Dave Stewart. Stewart is important because he knew Dr. Perry very well, and is a source of information as to what Perry said, and believed, on 11/22 and in the days following. Stewart told the Nashville, Tenn Banner (cira 1967) of the left temporal wound, based not on what he personally saw, but on what he was told (by Perry). I then interviewed him in 1982 (by phone); and then in 1989, Pat Valentino and I flew to Tennessee and did a very detailed (and professionally filmed) interview with him at his home Without getting into the details just now, you can add Stewart to the list of those who believe (in Stewart''s case, because of what he was told by Perry) that JFK was struck from the front, and in the left temple. (Stay tuned).

Wait, are you now claiming YOU believe he was hit in the left temple?

For now, I have one simple request: I wish you would quit saying that the Dallas doctors did not say that there was an exit wound at the back of the head--because that is obviously not true.

That's an easy request to agree to, as I don't recall ever saying such a thing. Of course they indicated, by and large, that there was a wound on the back of the head. My beef is with people pretending that the Parkland witnesses agreed this wound was LOW on the back of the head, below the ears, and that this confirms that the Harper fragment was occipital bone. That, David, is absolute balderdash.

When you make such statements, you are posting false information on the Internet in a discussion group that is read probably all over the world. I would think that regardless of what theories and hypotheses you entertain about the Kennedy assassination, you would not want to be in the position of spreading false information on such an important matter, especially when it so easily proved to be demonstrably false.

DSL

8/17/12; 1:30 AM PDT

Los Angeles, California

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Mr. Lifton,

I have not read your book. I am curious do you , anywhere in your book, discuss the unreliability of witness testimony?

Are you saying in your book that witness testimony is the most reliable evidence, or the Best Evidence?

In just a few words can you please describe what you believe to be the Best Evidence?

Please google "reliability witness testimony".

Edited by Mike Rago
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Mr. Lifton,

I have not read your book. I am curious do you , anywhere in your book, discuss the unreliability of witness testimony?

Are you saying in your book that witness testimony is the most reliable evidence, or the Best Evidence?

In just a few words can you please describe what you believe to be the Best Evidence?

Please google "reliability witness testimony".

Mr.Rago:

I spent 15 years researching and writing the book.

If you're interested in the subject, then please read it.

Thank you.

DSL

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 Without getting into the details just now, you can add Stewart to the list of those who believe (in Stewart''s case, because of what he was told by Perry) that JFK was struck in the left temple.


David,

There is a serious contradiction to the idea that JFK was shot in the left temple. As the copy of Z 312 below shows his left temple was turned away from a shooter in the North Plaza.

Z312.png

Anyone shooting from the North Plaza would be unable to make a hit there. The only area that had access to that aspect of JFK’s body would have to be on the South Plaza.

There has been no evidence that there ever were gunmen in the South Plaza.

The problem for a shot from the South Plaza is that the target has changed. From the North Plaza Jackie is behind JFK. From the South Plaza, JFK is behind her. Any shot requiring to strike JFK would first have to go through Jackie.

I do not question your research. It is amongst the finest in the history of the JFK assassination. However when the results of that research are placed on the historical reality of Dealey Plaza serious questions are immediately raised.

One response to this conflict of evidence is to just ignore it. However “Best Evidence” does not show you to be that kind of a researcher. So I am wondering, do you have a response and solution to this conflict?

James.

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My responses in bold.

MARKER AAA (referring to an earlier point, above, in this post).

Pat: You keep ignoring the fact that the Dallas doctors are on record--both in interviews conducted within a few days of the assassination, as well as under oath before the Warren Commission--that it was their opinion that a bullet exited from the rear of the head.

Let me lay it out here, from BEST EVIDENCE:

Are you not aware of the fact that one doctor after another believed that a bullet exited from the rear of Kennedy's skull? And that this pervaded the accounts published in the press in the days immediately following President Kennedy's murder?

And what about the testimony of the Dallas doctors in their Warren Commission depositions. As I wrote in BEST EVIDENCE (Chapter 13, on the head wounding):

Quoting from B.E.:

Indeed, six Dallas doctors testified the wound in the rear of the head was an exit wound; and a seventh, Dr. Kemp Clark, said it ould be an exit wound, but it was also possible the wound was "tangential." Dr. Jones testified it 'appeared to be an exit wound in the posterior portion of the skull'; (6 WCH 56)); Dr. Perry referred to it as "avulsive"; (6 WCH 11)) Dr. Jenkins, referring to the region as "exploded," said "I would interpret it being a wound of exit" (1 WCH 50) and Dr. Akin said: "I assume that the right oipito-parietal region was the exit." (6 WCH 67) UNQUOTE

How can you possibly ignore such explicit data? And there is more.

I then wrote two paragraphs laying out the testimony or public statements of those doctors who joined wound at the front of the throat (which they thought was an entry) with the wound at the back of the head (assumed to be an exit) and who then postulated that a bullet had entered at the President's throat, somehow was deflected up the spinal column, and then exited at the rear of the head.

One was Dr. Peters, in my November, 1966 telephone interview with him, as quoted in Chapter 13 of BEST EVIDENCE (see page 317 of the Macmillan or Carrol and Graf edition):

"I was trying to think how he could have had a hole in his neck and a hole in the occiput, and the only answer we could think [of] was perhaps the bullet had gone in through the front, hit the bony spinal column, and exited through the back of the head, since a wound of exit is always bigger than a wound of entry."

Next on the list was Dr. Malcolm Perry. And there I quoted from interviews he gave on Saturday, November 23, to John Geddie of the Dallas Morning News, and Herbert Blak, Medical Editor of the Boston Globe. Quoting these accounts (directly from page 317 of BEST EVIDENCE) --Now quoting:

Geddie reported: "The head wound, he [Perry] added, appeared to be 'an exit wound' caused when the bullet passed out." (Dallas Morning News, 11/24/63);

To Black, Perry acknowledged it was peculiar that "rather than entering" from behind, the bullet exited "despite the fact [that] the assassin shot from above down on to the President." But he assured Black that the wound he saw on the head was an exit."

"We know that the big damage is at the point of exit." He (Perry) offered this explanation: "It may have been that the President was looking up or sideways with his head thrown bak when the bullet or bullets struck him." (Boston Globe, 11/24/63)

Now here's my question, Pat Speer: I'm quoting you data from the record, the existing journalistic and testimonial record--and yet you come along, some 48 years later, and simply ignore it, and blithely mistate the record with these glib false statements.

Let me go back again, and re-state your false statement: ""None of them described this wound as an entrance wound for a bullet exiting elsewhere on the skull."

Read it again, David. It's the truth. None of them described the large head wound as an entrance wound for a bullet exiting elsewhere on the skull. I made this statement to refute the claim McClelland was speaking of an entrance wound when he said the wound was "of the left temple."

Well, if they all seemed to agree there was an exit wound at the back of the head, where do you think they must have thought it entered??

They thought the large wound was either an exit for the bullet entering the neck or a wound of both entrance and exit. None of them said anything about searching for an entrance on the front of the head, etc...

I think its time you set aside your cherished (and mistaken) beliefs--which apparently affect the way you interpret the record--and just look at the data. It also would help if would stop treating the doctors' opinions as if this was a legislative process, in which they could be "lobbied" to believe this or that, so you'll go forward 20-30 years, and quote what they said (or claimed to believe) decades after the event, and after my book was published, and try to substitute that as "best evidence." I have news for you: it ain't.

Sorry, David, it is. Cherry-picked statements and testimony about an event can't hold a candle to what people have to say when confronted with photographic evidence of that event. How many of the most prominent back-of-the-head witnesses have publicly called the autopsy photos fakes, or totally at odds with what they remembered, and stuck by it after viewing the originals?

These critical witnesses said what they said--to newspaper reporters within days, in the medical reports they wrote, and in their testimony. What I did in BEST EVIDENCE was demonstrate that that record was bifurcated. That what was observed at Parkland by the Dallas doctors was seriously different than what was reported at Bethesda. I also joined that with the clear evidene of interception (i.e., the broken chain of possession on the body) and the FBI report that the Bethesda doctors recognized that it was "apparent" that there had been "surgery of the head area, namely, in the top of the skull"--and said so, in plain English, in front of two FBI agents, who then included that statement in their report.

You have been attempting to "explain it all away" with a series of tendentious arguments concerning psychology and perception. But the facts speak for themselves, and the bifurcated record will not go away. Its an inherent part of the historical record of the Kennedy assassination. I have no doubt that BEST EVIDENCE will stand the test of time, and that the answer to "what happened" to the body will lead to the intellectual authors of this crime.

And I have no doubt that its time has passed, much as the time has passed for Six Seconds in Dallas. Important books, but not the last word.

And by the way, and getting back to specifics, and before leaving the topic of the wound at the left temple: I ought to mention one other witness, one who I did not include in BEST EVIDENCE because he was not in the room, but who is a very important witness, and that is Dr. Dave Stewart. Stewart is important because he knew Dr. Perry very well, and is a source of information as to what Perry said, and believed, on 11/22 and in the days following. Stewart told the Nashville, Tenn Banner (cira 1967) of the left temporal wound, based not on what he personally saw, but on what he was told (by Perry). I then interviewed him in 1982 (by phone); and then in 1989, Pat Valentino and I flew to Tennessee and did a very detailed (and professionally filmed) interview with him at his home Without getting into the details just now, you can add Stewart to the list of those who believe (in Stewart''s case, because of what he was told by Perry) that JFK was struck from the front, and in the left temple. (Stay tuned).

Wait, are you now claiming YOU believe he was hit in the left temple?

For now, I have one simple request: I wish you would quit saying that the Dallas doctors did not say that there was an exit wound at the back of the head--because that is obviously not true.

That's an easy request to agree to, as I don't recall ever saying such a thing. Of course they indicated, by and large, that there was a wound on the back of the head. My beef is with people pretending that the Parkland witnesses agreed this wound was LOW on the back of the head, below the ears, and that this confirms that the Harper fragment was occipital bone. That, David, is absolute balderdash.

When you make such statements, you are posting false information on the Internet in a discussion group that is read probably all over the world. I would think that regardless of what theories and hypotheses you entertain about the Kennedy assassination, you would not want to be in the position of spreading false information on such an important matter, especially when it so easily proved to be demonstrably false.

DSL

8/17/12; 1:30 AM PDT

Los Angeles, California

Sorry, Pat, but its you who is doing the cherry-picking, not I.

Pat Valentino and I sat with these doctors and nurses--both in 1982/83 (where the results were recorded on audio) and then in 1989 (with a film crew). We showed them the autopsy photographs.

With the exception of Dr. Perry, who was shown one photograph (by Groden) in New York City, I was the first investigator to show these doctors and nurses the actual autopsy photographs.

Again and again, they denied the validity of the wounding as depicted in the autopsy photos (and X-rays).

Why don't you re-read the record of these interviews, as published in the Epilogue to the 1982 edition of BEST EVIDENCE, and then republished word-for-work in the 1988 edition, and in the 1993 edition.

You call that "cherry picking"?

Do you think they were making all that up?

Its you who have been doing verbal summersaults attempting to make the record reflect not what the words and statements clearly state, but that which you want to believe is there (and which is not).

Going over and over this stuff, publishing fancy diagrams, and massaging it till the end of time, is not going to change what these people saw, wrote in their reports, and then testified to. And I am not just referring here to their opinions about the direction from which Kennedy was shot (from the front), but to the wounds that they observed in the area of the neck and head.

No amount of pulling and hauling, on your part, is going to change that record.

DSL

Edited by David Lifton
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I think that people, in the early days, postulated an entry on the left side of Kennedy because they were confronted with an obvious exit wound in the right temple area.

However, I am fairly sure that the bullet which exited the right temple entered near the top of Kennedy's head at a very steep downward angle. That bullet chipped off a piece of JFK's skull when it entered. It exited the right temple.This is what I believe we are seeing in Zapruder frame 313.

That bullet came from the roof of one of the tall buildings behind the president(Records Building?) and did have a slight left to right trajectory.

This also explains why there is very little forward movement of JFK seen in Zapruder frame 313.

If you look at the xray you can see that most of the missing skull follows a path from the top of the head down to the right side of the head. That wound was caused by a high velocity bullet that ripped through JFKI's skull.

I try to explain it in the following threads.

http://educationforu...45

http://educationforu...38

Edited by Mike Rago
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 Without getting into the details just now, you can add Stewart to the list of those who believe (in Stewart''s case, because of what he was told by Perry) that JFK was struck in the left temple.


David,

There is a serious contradiction to the idea that JFK was shot in the left temple. As the copy of Z 312 below shows his left temple was turned away from a shooter in the North Plaza.

Z312.png

Anyone shooting from the North Plaza would be unable to make a hit there. The only area that had access to that aspect of JFK’s body would have to be on the South Plaza.

There has been no evidence that there ever were gunmen in the South Plaza.

The problem for a shot from the South Plaza is that the target has changed. From the North Plaza Jackie is behind JFK. From the South Plaza, JFK is behind her. Any shot requiring to strike JFK would first have to go through Jackie.

I do not question your research. It is amongst the finest in the history of the JFK assassination. However when the results of that research are placed on the historical reality of Dealey Plaza serious questions are immediately raised.

One response to this conflict of evidence is to just ignore it. However “Best Evidence” does not show you to be that kind of a researcher. So I am wondering, do you have a response and solution to this conflict?

James.

First of all, I'm not saying that I have "all the answers," but. . . :

You are making certain assumptions.

(1) That the Zapruder film imagery is the final word

(2) That its a choice between the north plaza and the south plaza.

There are other possibilities. More significant, however. . : when you see the entire Dr. Stewart interview, there are other issues. And its very detailed. He's really a very important witness, not as to what he saw (he was not in the room) but because of the conversations he had afterwards.

Stay tuned.

DSL

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I think that people, in the early days, postulated an entry on the left side of Kennedy because they were confronted with an obvious exit wound in the right temple area.

However, I am fairly sure that the bullet which exited the right temple entered near the top of Kennedy's head at a very steep downward angle. That bullet chipped off a piece of JFK's skull when it entered. It exited the right temple.This is what I believe we are seeing in Zapruder frame 313.

That bullet came from the roof of one of the tall buildings behind the president(Records Building?) and did have a slight left to right trajectory.

This also explains why there is very little forward movement of JFK seen in Zapruder frame 313.

If you look at the xray you can see that most of the missing skull follows a path from the top of the head down to the right side of the head. That wound was caused by a high velocity bullet that ripped through JFKI's skull.

I try to explain it in the following threads.

http://educationforu...45

http://educationforu...38

You write: "I think that people, in the early days, postulated an entry on the left side of Kennedy because they were confronted with an obvious exit wound in the right temple area."

". . .an obvious exit wound in the right temple area". . . ?

FYI: There was no "obvious exit wound" in the right temporal area.

There is no such data anywhere in the Dallas medical reports or testimony, or in any statement made by any doctor or nurse to the media, on the day or, or at any time in the month following, President Kennedy's assassination.

IMHO: You are placing undue (and unwarranted) reliance on frames from a motion picture film which has been altered.

In any event, and had any of this been the subject of litigation: no court of law would ignore the medical reports and testimony of the Dallas dotors, and place reliance on a film which (a) shows altered imagery, and (b ) fails to show a car stop, which was attested to by some 15 witnesses; and (c ) doesn't even show the sharp slowdown (which is attested to by nearly 60 witnesses).

Moreover (and in my hypothetical example) telling a judge that he should Google "reliability eyewitness testimony" is not a substitute for the medical reports and testimony of those who saw President Kennedy's body, within minutes of the shooting.

DSL

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I am relying on these images to make my statement there is an obvious exit wound in the right temple area.

The Zapruder film corroborates these images.

topofhead06resizedellip.gif

xautlarge.png

z313j.jpg

You say

There is no such data anywhere in the Dallas medical reports or testimony, or in any statement made by any doctor or nurse to the media, on the day or, or at any time in the month following, President Kennedy's assassination.

Frankly Mr. Lifton the medical people did not know or understand what happened. This is just one more example of it. As the photographic and xray evidence show, the right temple was not an entry location. It was an exit location. In another example a bullet passed through the body of the president but was completely undetected by the medical professionals.

In reality, Mr. Lifton, the photographic evidence is the best evidence. It is the only way to piece together what really happened in a consistent and reasonable manner.

In a court of law, Mr. Lifton, all one would have to do is introduce this document to cast doubt on the entire medical process.

medicalpanelconclusions.png

You say

Moreover (and in my hypothetical example) telling a judge that he should Google "reliability eyewitness testimony" is not a substitute for the medical reports and testimony of those who saw President Kennedy's body, within minutes of the shooting.

Mr. Lifton the judge will already know how unreliable eye witness testimony is. I was asking you to google it Eye testimony is not the best evidence.

Edited by Mike Rago
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My responses in bold.

MARKER AAA (referring to an earlier point, above, in this post).

Pat: You keep ignoring the fact that the Dallas doctors are on record--both in interviews conducted within a few days of the assassination, as well as under oath before the Warren Commission--that it was their opinion that a bullet exited from the rear of the head.

Let me lay it out here, from BEST EVIDENCE:

Are you not aware of the fact that one doctor after another believed that a bullet exited from the rear of Kennedy's skull? And that this pervaded the accounts published in the press in the days immediately following President Kennedy's murder?

And what about the testimony of the Dallas doctors in their Warren Commission depositions. As I wrote in BEST EVIDENCE (Chapter 13, on the head wounding):

Quoting from B.E.:

Indeed, six Dallas doctors testified the wound in the rear of the head was an exit wound; and a seventh, Dr. Kemp Clark, said it ould be an exit wound, but it was also possible the wound was "tangential." Dr. Jones testified it 'appeared to be an exit wound in the posterior portion of the skull'; (6 WCH 56)); Dr. Perry referred to it as "avulsive"; (6 WCH 11)) Dr. Jenkins, referring to the region as "exploded," said "I would interpret it being a wound of exit" (1 WCH 50) and Dr. Akin said: "I assume that the right oipito-parietal region was the exit." (6 WCH 67) UNQUOTE

How can you possibly ignore such explicit data? And there is more.

I then wrote two paragraphs laying out the testimony or public statements of those doctors who joined wound at the front of the throat (which they thought was an entry) with the wound at the back of the head (assumed to be an exit) and who then postulated that a bullet had entered at the President's throat, somehow was deflected up the spinal column, and then exited at the rear of the head.

One was Dr. Peters, in my November, 1966 telephone interview with him, as quoted in Chapter 13 of BEST EVIDENCE (see page 317 of the Macmillan or Carrol and Graf edition):

"I was trying to think how he could have had a hole in his neck and a hole in the occiput, and the only answer we could think [of] was perhaps the bullet had gone in through the front, hit the bony spinal column, and exited through the back of the head, since a wound of exit is always bigger than a wound of entry."

Next on the list was Dr. Malcolm Perry. And there I quoted from interviews he gave on Saturday, November 23, to John Geddie of the Dallas Morning News, and Herbert Blak, Medical Editor of the Boston Globe. Quoting these accounts (directly from page 317 of BEST EVIDENCE) --Now quoting:

Geddie reported: "The head wound, he [Perry] added, appeared to be 'an exit wound' caused when the bullet passed out." (Dallas Morning News, 11/24/63);

To Black, Perry acknowledged it was peculiar that "rather than entering" from behind, the bullet exited "despite the fact [that] the assassin shot from above down on to the President." But he assured Black that the wound he saw on the head was an exit."

"We know that the big damage is at the point of exit." He (Perry) offered this explanation: "It may have been that the President was looking up or sideways with his head thrown bak when the bullet or bullets struck him." (Boston Globe, 11/24/63)

Now here's my question, Pat Speer: I'm quoting you data from the record, the existing journalistic and testimonial record--and yet you come along, some 48 years later, and simply ignore it, and blithely mistate the record with these glib false statements.

Let me go back again, and re-state your false statement: ""None of them described this wound as an entrance wound for a bullet exiting elsewhere on the skull."

Read it again, David. It's the truth. None of them described the large head wound as an entrance wound for a bullet exiting elsewhere on the skull. I made this statement to refute the claim McClelland was speaking of an entrance wound when he said the wound was "of the left temple."

Well, if they all seemed to agree there was an exit wound at the back of the head, where do you think they must have thought it entered??

They thought the large wound was either an exit for the bullet entering the neck or a wound of both entrance and exit. None of them said anything about searching for an entrance on the front of the head, etc...

I think its time you set aside your cherished (and mistaken) beliefs--which apparently affect the way you interpret the record--and just look at the data. It also would help if would stop treating the doctors' opinions as if this was a legislative process, in which they could be "lobbied" to believe this or that, so you'll go forward 20-30 years, and quote what they said (or claimed to believe) decades after the event, and after my book was published, and try to substitute that as "best evidence." I have news for you: it ain't.

Sorry, David, it is. Cherry-picked statements and testimony about an event can't hold a candle to what people have to say when confronted with photographic evidence of that event. How many of the most prominent back-of-the-head witnesses have publicly called the autopsy photos fakes, or totally at odds with what they remembered, and stuck by it after viewing the originals?

These critical witnesses said what they said--to newspaper reporters within days, in the medical reports they wrote, and in their testimony. What I did in BEST EVIDENCE was demonstrate that that record was bifurcated. That what was observed at Parkland by the Dallas doctors was seriously different than what was reported at Bethesda. I also joined that with the clear evidene of interception (i.e., the broken chain of possession on the body) and the FBI report that the Bethesda doctors recognized that it was "apparent" that there had been "surgery of the head area, namely, in the top of the skull"--and said so, in plain English, in front of two FBI agents, who then included that statement in their report.

You have been attempting to "explain it all away" with a series of tendentious arguments concerning psychology and perception. But the facts speak for themselves, and the bifurcated record will not go away. Its an inherent part of the historical record of the Kennedy assassination. I have no doubt that BEST EVIDENCE will stand the test of time, and that the answer to "what happened" to the body will lead to the intellectual authors of this crime.

And I have no doubt that its time has passed, much as the time has passed for Six Seconds in Dallas. Important books, but not the last word.

And by the way, and getting back to specifics, and before leaving the topic of the wound at the left temple: I ought to mention one other witness, one who I did not include in BEST EVIDENCE because he was not in the room, but who is a very important witness, and that is Dr. Dave Stewart. Stewart is important because he knew Dr. Perry very well, and is a source of information as to what Perry said, and believed, on 11/22 and in the days following. Stewart told the Nashville, Tenn Banner (cira 1967) of the left temporal wound, based not on what he personally saw, but on what he was told (by Perry). I then interviewed him in 1982 (by phone); and then in 1989, Pat Valentino and I flew to Tennessee and did a very detailed (and professionally filmed) interview with him at his home Without getting into the details just now, you can add Stewart to the list of those who believe (in Stewart''s case, because of what he was told by Perry) that JFK was struck from the front, and in the left temple. (Stay tuned).

Wait, are you now claiming YOU believe he was hit in the left temple?

For now, I have one simple request: I wish you would quit saying that the Dallas doctors did not say that there was an exit wound at the back of the head--because that is obviously not true.

That's an easy request to agree to, as I don't recall ever saying such a thing. Of course they indicated, by and large, that there was a wound on the back of the head. My beef is with people pretending that the Parkland witnesses agreed this wound was LOW on the back of the head, below the ears, and that this confirms that the Harper fragment was occipital bone. That, David, is absolute balderdash.

When you make such statements, you are posting false information on the Internet in a discussion group that is read probably all over the world. I would think that regardless of what theories and hypotheses you entertain about the Kennedy assassination, you would not want to be in the position of spreading false information on such an important matter, especially when it so easily proved to be demonstrably false.

DSL

8/17/12; 1:30 AM PDT

Los Angeles, California

Sorry, Pat, but its you who is doing the cherry-picking, not I.

Pat Valentino and I sat with these doctors and nurses--both in 1982/83 (where the results were recorded on audio) and then in 1989 (with a film crew). We showed them the autopsy photographs.

With the exception of Dr. Perry, who was shown one photograph (by Groden) in New York City, I was the first investigator to show these doctors and nurses the actual autopsy photographs.

Again and again, they denied the validity of the wounding as depicted in the autopsy photos (and X-rays).

Why don't you re-read the record of these interviews, as published in the Epilogue to the 1982 edition of BEST EVIDENCE, and then republished word-for-work in the 1988 edition, and in the 1993 edition.

You call that "cherry picking"?

Do you think they were making all that up?

Its you who have been doing verbal summersaults attempting to make the record reflect not what the words and statements clearly state, but that which you want to believe is there (and which is not).

Going over and over this stuff, publishing fancy diagrams, and massaging it till the end of time, is not going to change what these people saw, wrote in their reports, and then testified to. And I am not just referring here to their opinions about the direction from which Kennedy was shot (from the front), but to the wounds that they observed in the area of the neck and head.

No amount of pulling and hauling, on your part, is going to change that record.

DSL

I'm not the one trying to change the record, David. The Parkland witnesses, on average, described a wound at the top of the back of the head. When shown the photos, on average, they said the large wound was not exactly where they remembered it, but that they believed the autopsy photos were legitimate.

There are those, however, who would have us believe the Parkland witnesses, on average, described a wound LOW on the back of the head, consistent with the Harper fragment's being occipital bone. There are those, however, who would have us believe these witnesses heroically stood by their earliest descriptions of the wound, even when shown the autopsy photos. There are those, however, who would have us believe these witnesses were conspiracy theorists, forced to hide their true selves, and their certain knowledge the wound they saw was low on the back of Kennedy's head, and proof he was shot from the front.

And that's insulting nonsense. Insulting to the bulk of the witnesses... And insulting to the research community...

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