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Tipping Point serialization now in progress on the Mary Ferrell Foundation site


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Without carrying on much further I just want to be forthright and say that I included the torn bill item because I felt it was interesting, often ignored and had some potential relevance to the AMWORLD trade-craft reference I showed. I don't assert that it is  was provable as connected to Oswald, simply that it remains interesting and might reflect an instance of trade-craft related to him if it were capable of being verified.

Perhaps someday someone will find something to prove it in and vet it as being related to Oswald...unlikely but always possible.  I also agreed as to its problems and stated I would not offer it as a verifiable piece of evidence.

I am concerned that such controversies tend to suck the life out of the more important issues...which is why I appended those to my earlier post....

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Larry Hancock
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21 hours ago, Larry Hancock said:

 

As to whether certain frames were later altered to conceal the nature of the real hole in the rear of the head, I'm open to that sort of obfuscation but I have also seen two presentations (one by Robert Groden just last month) which illustrate a shadow effect on the head and still show rather obvious evidence of an actual hole.  So basically I'm convinced the hole is there, I'm uncertain whether it was actually altered in the film to obscure it or whether by playing with exposures it was minimized when put into print.  

But to answer your question, my view is that the second set of story boards certainly was crated with frames selected to obscure the fact of multiple shooters - just as the autopsy report was reworked multiple times to obfuscate the same thing.  And that was known at the top of NPIC, which explains the strong reaction when it was learned the first set had not been immediately destroyed and was still in deep storage.

Larry I am very grateful that you are engaging on this. Your choice of words is extremely careful on this topic, but are you risking the conflation of two issues? The film JFK, and many other commentators state that the Z film 'intuitively' shows a frontal shot. I don't think it does. I feel the extant film's missing frames are hiding a slow fall forward (from braking), during which the President was hit in the head (probably more than once). The head snap now shown is thus an artifact, impossible to intuit anything from.

Thus I feel you are at risk of conflating  proof of a frontal shot, with extant fim authenticity. I  hate to labour a point that is pretty peripheral to your work, but it isn't peripheral to proof of conspiracy. If the film's authenticity is not challenged I feel that we lose a very significant piece of the evidence of the cover-up.

 

I think your absolutely right to focus on the large rear hole. In my view it is the best evidenced piece of the cover-up. But, its a hole with no blast-out.

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It does look like I need to be more specific in separating the two issues - film and movements vs. film and rear hole.  So let's try this:

To some extent I think the micro analyses of the body movements over the decades (of which there are several, not surprisingly countering each other) leads away from the reality of the first 48 hours and the and the emergence of a decision to suppress investigation and evidence of conspiracy.

The majority of people viewing the Z film for the first time (not only myself but I've seen dozens if not hundreds do so) immediately and intuitively react as if there is obviously a shot from the front - that also became apparent once the film began to be widely shown on television. Perhaps someone has done a statistical perception study - but certainly that is my subjective impression.

We also have the personal commentary from an individual at NPIC who first saw the film run; as an experienced marksman he immediately perceived multiple shooters and shots coming in from multiple directions.

Personally I believe that is an explanation for holding the film from any general viewing as well as the frame sequencing "error" in the LIFE publication - rightly or wrongly the film had to be presented in a fashion to suppress doubt and totally point towards a rear shooter in the TSBD.

I would also argue that first impressions of JFK's body movements (even if they were technically consistent with only shots from the rear - something we can never know for sure) were a problem, which had to be countered by controlling the images, both with LIFE and even with the second set of official story boards which had to be created at NPIC.

Of course film control and frame manipulation (whether removing, shifting, etc) is independent from frame alteration. The question of whether the film showed (or still shows) a rear hole is indeed separate and if I appeared to conflate that this should resolve that. 

I would maintain that if it did clearly and obviously show a hole in the rear of the head, that plus the intuitive reaction to the body movement, would have made it doubly hard to sell the public on only shots from the rear.

To what extent frames may have been altered or removed to obfuscate any size rear hole will be argued forever.  As I said, I have seen two people very familiar with the film make an illustrated and convincing argument that a hole can still be perceived in the extant frames...Groden did a fine job on that in the Lancer presentation.

But in terms of the conspiracy I explore in Tipping Point, neither film manipulation nor film alteration was anticipated or desirable. That conspiracy made no effort to disguise multiple shooters nor more than three shots.  The efforts at Z film control, obfuscation, manipulation etc were part of the response that  frustrated that goal, dialing public perception back to a single lone nut. If anything, forcing the attack back to a three shot, six second attack by a single individual was counter to the secondary goal of the plot.

 

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Any thoughts on why Zapruder was there in the first place? There were lots of spectators in Dealey Plaza, and also - clearly - a number of people with ulterior motives. I’m just wondering if you view his presence in the necessary spot with a movie camera as a lucky accident, or as something perhaps not unknown or unwanted by the original plotters. I’m sure arguments have been made both ways.

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15 minutes ago, Anthony Thorne said:

Any thoughts on why Zapruder was there in the first place? There were lots of spectators in Dealey Plaza, and also - clearly - a number of people with ulterior motives. I’m just wondering if you view his presence in the necessary spot with a movie camera as a lucky accident, or as something perhaps not unknown or unwanted by the original plotters. I’m sure arguments have been made both ways.

I'm not Larry, but I've never heard a reasonable argument that Zapruder was part of the plot. The whole alteration think is crazier and crazier. Like they thought, "let's make sure the film gets back into circulation because in about 10 or so years it'll leak out and the obvious shot from the front will make people think there was no shot from the front, even though this will be the thing that completely explodes the theory of a lone nut, so let's just do it so subtly, with techniques that we don't even have yet, that the film which we are altering to show no conspiracy not only shows conspiracy but also disproves the single-bullet theory. Otherwise we can just throw it in the garbage, but that'll stop years of uninformed and crazy commentary that will continue to discredit the conspiracy folks. Plus this will give Fetzer something to do."

Edited by Allen Lowe
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You don't need Abraham Zapruder involved when you're trying to pull off an assassination, nor do you want him involved. So I'm voting no on that idea.

Once someone decides that someone is going to be shot in a crowded public area, they've tacitly admitted that they're not going to worry about witnesses or cameras.

The Z film's function is that of a clock of the assassination. It also suggests a shot from someplace other than the rear, but not from the infamous Grassy Knoll-that idea is from SM Holland. However those two pieces of evidence unsurprisingly became conflated over the years.

Edited by Matt Allison
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So, Wheaton heard from CIA veterans that people above the Cubans wanted JFK killed for other reasons.  Anti colonialism?  Rubber, oil, uranium?  Vietnam, the Mid East, the Congo?

Roy Hargraves had Secret Service credentials per associates?  Didn't I believe two assassination witnesses  encounter person(s) on the grassy knoll confronting/stopping/delaying them with SS credentials?  One of those being a cop?

Hargraves admitted to being in Dallas on 11/22/63, with an unused explosive device.  If he was there in that capacity with SS ID, is it not possible others, running interference so to speak for shooters getting away from the GK had such? 

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I was gathering from Larry’s comments - and I might have misread him, maybe not - that the initial conspiracy was intended to have multiple shooters as part of the ‘official’ story, presumably as the story of multiple shooters killing Kennedy would point somewhere else, possibly outside the US. Potentially, this is the ‘blame it on Castro’ thesis. And if the intention was to have multiple shooters as part of the story, a film of their handiwork would come in handy. 
 

Then, after Oswald survived his arrest, the plan changed, the lone nut thesis was quickly decided upon as the expedient alternative story, the Z. film’s depiction of multiple shooters was no longer useful at all, and everyone would have to twist themselves into knots to prove the lone nut thesis instead.

You don’t need Zapruder involved when you’re trying to pull off an assassination, but you could use him - or someone like him - if you wanted to have a film showing that multiple shooters had killedKennedy. And if the goal was to present an official story of multiple gunmen killing the President, a film showing that happening would help, rather than hinder, that process.

I admit it’s a reach. And I’d never even considered the possibility until today. But - correct me if I’m wrong - Larry seems to have stated just above that, by his analysis. no one had originally planned to hide the fact that there were multiple shooters. If they weren’t planning on hiding that fact, then I’m assuming they were planning on promoting it for some reason. And if they wanted to promote that story, having something to promote it with would have been useful, unless they just wanted to rely on word of mouth.

Again, I might have misread what Larry has said above, and the thesis is a new one to me, but he appears to be stating that an ‘official story’ featuring multiple gunmen was part of the original plan - they made no attempt to hide the fact, etc - and if the plan was to present that as the official story, having Zapruder serve as Johnny-on-the-spot would be a useful thing.

i concede that there were plenty of people with cameras there on the day already, and Zapruder may have just accidentally captured footage that reinforced that first, planned official story, and which then later had to be hidden or altered or suppressed to help reinforce the second official story.

Edited by Anthony Thorne
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First to respond to Ron:

Its impossible to know what the "people above" the tactical team had as their primary motive but we have a pretty good feel that from Harvey up through the CIA it was felt that JFK posed a national security risk in regard to countering the global communist threat because he was a) too willing to prefer what they considered as naive solutions i.e. neutralism and detente and b) he had brought far too much civilian and multi-agency involvement into cold warfare and that was undermining all their efforts.  The further up the chain attitudes probably focused on a) while down at JMWAVE b) had them literally frothing at the mouth and even in memos.

Given the guys Wheaton heard talking it could have been either but certainly would have involved b)

Yes, false credentials were shown in the area of the fence and of course false credentials reflect good solid planning for the support team, especially those doing overwatch and shielding.

It appears that he built the device but it was not needed, probably it was a backup.  Building it did not actually make him part of the tactical team so he likely deployed for overwatch...or simply as a spectator, wanting to see JFK killed.

Also, if Hargarves was used to build an IED, it suggests the tactical team was indeed small and largely left to its own resources, a standard example of the type of deniable operation these folks were trained to carry out and competent to bring off.

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On the Z film question, it all goes back to the nature of the tactical team and the ambush.  The people I write about knew JFK had to be killed in Dallas, in the Plaza or elsewhere. While other, earlier plots against him by others involved single shooters or dynamite bombs those were something entirely different and not the well organized effort we see in Dallas. The people behind the Dallas attack were working against a deadline and they planned to be successful one way or the other.

Which means multiple shooters and the other things that go along with a well structured infantry style ambush.  The attack planning was all about killing JFK, those involved were extremely committed, willing to sacrifice themselves if necessary.  This was not the typical movie type contract killing with the mysterious professional shooter relying on some poor patsy to take the fall while he ends up by a pool in a foreign with drinks and women.

Which is my way of saying the tactical team's effort went into a maximum type "kill zone" effort without any thought or concern over how many shots were fired how quickly. It was up to the other people to frame Oswald and point the attack towards Castro. Their job was an ambush.

I doubt any of them worried that witnesses would report shots from multiple directions and shooters at multiple points - we know that happened and it was a pain to cover up and obfuscate.  So was the film showing smoke at the fence-line (and yes it was there, obvious from the overpass with the sunlight directly on it and reflecting, much less so from up Elm street with the sunlight passing through it).  

There were even early "artifacts" such as my friend Connie interviewing a Parkland Doctor who clearly described a shot into the front of the head, or the TV interview with a finger pointing to the same frontal entry or the DPD officer talking about someone picking Oswald up in a car. You can argue each of those as you choose but they all things that presented public perception problems for a lone nut shooting from the rear and led to concerns that the Dallas Police should just shut up. None of that required the Z film.

If Zapruder had left his camera at home we would still have numerous witnesses to multiple shooters and other suspicious people which would suggest conspiracy - and even without Zapruder there are films that suggest that, one shows someone running behind the fence line (the Paschell film I think, might be mistaken on that name but the movement is obvious in the film) and others including what was likely someone in a TSBD window.

Not trying to show an attitude but personally I think we have often been tempted to make it all more mysterious by adding things to mix when it was really rather simple....a team of people were successful in an ambush of the president, another team botched whatever expanded frame of Oswald was planned, likely because of Oswald himself and evidence of conspiracy was clear to anyone who wanted to see it. 

Due to the potential consequences of a conspiracy (either foreign as immediately suspected or domestic as further indications suggested) all the indications of a conspiracy had to be avoided, obfuscated or suppressed. 

Not the first time, not the last...national security trumps reality...

 

Edited by Larry Hancock
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Back ion 1994, Peter Dale Scott was formulating "Phase One" and Phase Two" to describe an attribution of responsibility for the assassination - moving from a Soviet/Cuban conspiracy to a lone-nut. This was derived from the document releases mandated by the ARRB. 

I am curious if this notion had been previously formulated (i.e. ahead of ARRB) by any researchers.

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I'm stretching my memory on Peter's work but I had thought his concept was more a "poison pill" type thing where the conspiracy used insider information and planted leads to point to the Soviet/Cubans - anticipating that the intel agencies would move to protect their associations with Oswald and at the same time the WH would move to avoid a confrontation with the Soviets. I recall that being based on revelations about Mexico City and more details on Johnson's directives to Warren and what was being learned about the options Johnson tried to push before he fell back to the Warren Commission.

I'm not sure any of the first or second generation scenarios went that route, generally speaking they were more fragmented with different types of sponsors and less detail.  Certainly many of them presented Oswald as the classic patsy in a "cover" sense, used to blame the crime on - more of the classic criminal type conspiracy involving mobsters or even LBJ.

But else will likely recall something I've forgotten in regard to that question. 

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