Jump to content
The Education Forum

Josiah Thompson's brand new book LAST SECOND IN DALLAS


Recommended Posts

14 hours ago, Mark Tyler said:

It's a good question, so I shall explain what I did to arrive at the conclusion I did about the gap from the shots to the sirens.  In a nutshell it boils down to the synchronization between the two channels and the real time clock that the dispatcher periodically mentions.

Firstly, the judgement of the shot timing is done on channel 2 as we hear Curry mention he was approaching the triple underpass.  10 seconds later the dispatcher says it is 12:30.  About 10 seconds after that Curry starts transmitting again and we briefly hear a siren in the background and it is clear that the shooting has just taken place during the previous 20 seconds.  We then get some fairly constant chatter for the next minute until we hear Bill Decker mention about holding everything secure and then we hear what sounds like a bell.  These two events also happen on channel 1 (which was continuously recording for over 6 minutes due to the stuck open microphone), and is the so called crosstalk.  This is my sync point between the two channels, and by checking the time announcements on each of the channels there seems to be a good sync which confirms it is about right.  We can never know to the nearest second exactly how they sync, but everything seems to line up without any loose ends from what I can tell.

However, the shots that the HSCA scientists identify are just before the bell event and so therefore the alleged shots happened more than a minute after the actual assassination.  This is the big bone of contention between the defenders of the HSCA report and others who feel that the continuity doesn't align with the real time of the shots.

Taking the recordings of the dictabelt at face value these are my conclusions:

  • The timing is wrong for the position of the alleged shots (it's too late by over a minute).
  • The siren that appears 3+ minutes after the assassination indicates that the microphone is near the Trade Mart as the motorcade rushes past to go to the hospital.
  • The lack of a siren during the shooting, and no crowd noise, suggests that the microphone was never in Dealey Plaza.  Curry on channel 2 was able to pick up a lot of crowd noise on Main Street before the shots, and a siren was audible seconds after the event, so this should have been audible on channel 1 (but it wasn't).
  • The calculated position of the microphone turning from Houston Street onto Elm Street does not correspond to any single vehicle, and no motorbike is close enough for a match (McLain is well over 100 feet away for example).

The dictabelt evidence tells us many things about the events in Dallas, but sadly it tells us nothing about the shots fired in Dealey Plaza.

Thank you for that wealth of information.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 256
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

16 hours ago, Cliff Varnell said:

It tells us many things about the HSCA cover-up.  They wanted to distract from this bit of nonsense.

image.thumb.jpeg.0f7593f3f18e10582c9b106d3721590b.jpeg

 

 

The HSCA diagrams of the single bullet theory are truly appalling!  Getting the SBT trajectory to work from the sixth floor window at Z220 is already very difficult, but at Z190 it's almost impossible as the angle is even greater, hence the geometric gymnastics.  And why did the HSCA say Z190 and not later?  The dictabelt strikes again!

For what it's worth I'm not against the general idea of a single bullet going through JFK and Connally, but it seems to me that the natural angle is much flatter than the 20+ degrees from the TSBD.  A 10 degree angle would seem a much better fit for both sets of injuries to the victims, and JFK would only need a modest slouch to make it work rather than leaning so far forward he is almost headbutting John Connally!  So, if the first shot missed the limo during Z180-Z190 (e.g. hitting the road as a couple of witnesses said), and a flatter SBT occurred at Z220, this connects the physical evidence, the Z-film events, and the witness evidence (most notably John Connally himself who said there were two seconds between the sound of the first shot and when he was hit: Z188 to Z225 is two seconds).

Two shots fired in quick succession like this requires two gunmen, which many people will never accept, but it seems to be the most obvious interpretation of the evidence.  Interestingly the HSCA dictabelt conclusions also require two shots within two seconds, but somehow they had Oswald firing both which seems a bit of a stretch for that old bolt action gun.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In Last Second in Dallas, Thompson gives a startling history of how the audio recordings currently available as "DPD police radio recordings" were composites created from the original media (that no longer exist), leaving several recordings and transcripts of varying integrity behind.  Suffice it to say that there is currently no recording that could be called "the soundtrack of the Zapruder film," although enhanced versions have reportedly been created that align with the apparent gunshot visuals that exist on the extant version of the Zapruder film (which itself may not look exactly as it did in Dallas at 12:40 pm on 11/22/63). 

The short version for me is that Thompson's attributing the rapid and substantial forward motion of JFK's head in frames around 320 to a gunshot wound from the rear that exited the front of JFK's head is not compatible with the presence of hair/scalp on JFK's right shoulder in the Moorman photograph (which coincides with Z frame 315), and doesn't account for the "pristeen" condition of JFK's face at Parkland, nor does it account for evidence of an inshoot above the right eye near the hairline (which could account for the hair/scalp on JFK's shoulder in the Moorman photo).  A shot from the rear would explain the spray of blood/brain onto the front of the limo (as far away as the hood ornament) and the cracked windshield & chrome bezel, but so would a shot striking only John Connally, or an excised series of frames from the Zfilm which appears with ever increasing certainty to have occurred. 

So maybe there were actually three shots in that "last second" in Dallas - the first as a frangible round from the front right exploding inside JFK's head (followed almost immediately by the exposure of Moorman's polaroid film to the scene), the second from the right side (after JFK's head was turned sufficiently to the right by the first shot in order to point the right rear of his head toward the driver's side tail light & officer Hargis where the pressurized contents of the skull would be expelled by the 2nd shot), and the third shot from the right rear ("above and behind" but not necessarily from the TSBD) to spray the front of the car with blood from John Connally, since there is no evidence for a 3rd head shot to JFK, but there is definitely evidence for two.

It's important to account for all of the bits and pieces of evidence in this case and one way to do that (and avoid contamination by the "confirmation bias" that all humans are subject to) is to section the event into very "thin" time slices and examine what happened in each of them, and reconstruct the "whole" event from the slices.  The holes in the thin slices are more easily recognizable (when events in the preceding and succeeding slices have information that bear no connection to the middle slice).  Hope this helps!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, Mark Tyler said:

The HSCA diagrams of the single bullet theory are truly appalling!  Getting the SBT trajectory to work from the sixth floor window at Z220 is already very difficult, but at Z190 it's almost impossible as the angle is even greater, hence the geometric gymnastics.  

It’s impossible, period.  The bullet holes in JFK’s clothes are too low to associate with the throat wound.

Period.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Single bullet?  In the mid-upper back (third thoracic vertebrate).  Out the throat.  Becomes Magic as it zigs and zags in the air to turn downward into Connally's armpit, along his rib, out his nipple.  Breaking a bone in his wrist.  Leaving fragments there, then the remnant landing in his thigh.  But being found in pristine condition on a stretcher he never laid upon.

A magic act dreamt up by Specter, Dulles and company?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 2/10/2021 at 6:22 PM, Mark Tyler said:

The HSCA diagrams of the single bullet theory are truly appalling!  Getting the SBT trajectory to work from the sixth floor window at Z220 is already very difficult, but at Z190 it's almost impossible as the angle is even greater, hence the geometric gymnastics.  And why did the HSCA say Z190 and not later?  The dictabelt strikes again!

For what it's worth I'm not against the general idea of a single bullet going through JFK and Connally, but it seems to me that the natural angle is much flatter than the 20+ degrees from the TSBD.  A 10 degree angle would seem a much better fit for both sets of injuries to the victims, and JFK would only need a modest slouch to make it work rather than leaning so far forward he is almost headbutting John Connally!  So, if the first shot missed the limo during Z180-Z190 (e.g. hitting the road as a couple of witnesses said), and a flatter SBT occurred at Z220, this connects the physical evidence, the Z-film events, and the witness evidence (most notably John Connally himself who said there were two seconds between the sound of the first shot and when he was hit: Z188 to Z225 is two seconds).

Two shots fired in quick succession like this requires two gunmen, which many people will never accept, but it seems to be the most obvious interpretation of the evidence.  Interestingly the HSCA dictabelt conclusions also require two shots within two seconds, but somehow they had Oswald firing both which seems a bit of a stretch for that old bolt action gun.

Hi Mark, on another current thread there is a fascinating YouTube presentation about evidence of a thro' hole witnessed in the limo windshield. I would very much appreciate your take on this. It certainly adds to the debate on shot number and directions thus probably also on shot timing. It seems plausible to me that Kennedy was shot in the throat by a bullet that also came through the windshield. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 2/5/2021 at 4:31 PM, Eddy Bainbridge said:

The recording on the Dictabelt went through a filter. This means what you hear is not an accurate representation of Anything. To analyse the sound impulses you need to take account of the filter, you can't simply say it 'sounds' like x motorcycle type. 

actually, not necessarily true. Equalization/filters can restore the sound to its more accurate original sound if done correctly, especially when one is working on a badly done recording. The original is no more "real" than a processed version. Each one is just an analog.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

19 hours ago, Eddy Bainbridge said:

Hi Mark, on another current thread there is a fascinating YouTube presentation about evidence of a thro' hole witnessed in the limo windshield. I would very much appreciate your take on this. It certainly adds to the debate on shot number and directions thus probably also on shot timing. It seems plausible to me that Kennedy was shot in the throat by a bullet that also came through the windshield. 

Hi Eddy.  No stone should remain unturned, so a frontal shot should be examined as a possibility.  The first shot or shots that were fired seem a bit of a mystery as I struggle to make any theory work.  For example the official single bullet theory is problematic because the vertical angle from JFK's back wound to his throat wound seems flat, and yet the downward angle from the sixth floor window gunman is about 20 degrees.  All of the models I have seen where the back wound is faithfully placed ends up with the shot exiting JFK's chest which we all know is completely wrong.  The only way to make it work is to have JFK leaning forward like the HSCA diagrams show, but we all know from the Z-film that this didn't happen!  Unless JFK had a peculiar physiology, I can't see how the shot came from where the Warren Commission and HSCA said it did.  A lower angle is possible if JFK slouched somewhat (maybe 8-10 degrees, with 3 degrees of this coming from the road decline making a 5 degree JFK slouch), but it would have to be somewhere other than the TSBD as there were no low open windows on that side of the building.  The fourth or fifth floor of the Dal-Tex fits this angle, but I would expect the many people in that building to have reported such a noisy event (in the Altgens 6 photo we see people hanging out of the windows on the third floor).

A frontal shot from a low source (such as the storm drain) suffers from a similar problem because if it entered the throat it would presumably would exit via the back of the neck, which the autopsy photos don't show.  A slightly elevated frontal shot might connect with the back wound, but then the bullet should presumably hit the back of the limo somewhere, which I don't see reflected in any of the photos.

Finally, there is the possibility as mentioned by Cliff and Ron earlier that the wounds are simply not related to the same shot, and that maybe two or three shots fired from different directions are responsible.  While very tempting, this also has the problem regarding exit wounds which I don't really see in the autopsy photos.  I have heard about the idea of the back wound only being a shallow wound, but for this to have happened the bullet must have been travelling incredibly slowly which doesn't seem likely unless there was some kind of strange misfire.

In summary, I'm fairly stumped as to how the victims received their wounds.  Judging from the witnesses and the Z-film I think shots were fired at Z185 and Z220, so I do think two gunmen were involved, but apart from that I find it very hard to resolve all of the issues.

I haven't yet seen the new Josiah Thompson book, but it would be interesting to know how he deals with the first couple of shots around Z185-Z220.

I'll leave a comment on the other thread regarding the details of the windshield shot theory.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

13 minutes ago, Mark Tyler said:

Finally, there is the possibility as mentioned by Cliff and Ron earlier that the wounds are simply not related to the same shot, and that maybe two or three shots fired from different directions are responsible.  While very tempting, this also has the problem regarding exit wounds which I don't really see in the autopsy photos.  I have heard about the idea of the back wound only being a shallow wound, but for this to have happened the bullet must have been travelling incredibly slowly which doesn't seem likely unless there was some kind of strange misfire.

The night of the autopsy, with the body in front of them, the autopsists speculated JFK was hit with a hi-tech round that didn’t leave a trace.

That would explain the shallow rounds.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Mark Tyler said:

Hi Eddy.  No stone should remain unturned, so a frontal shot should be examined as a possibility.  The first shot or shots that were fired seem a bit of a mystery as I struggle to make any theory work.  For example the official single bullet theory is problematic because the vertical angle from JFK's back wound to his throat wound seems flat, and yet the downward angle from the sixth floor window gunman is about 20 degrees.  All of the models I have seen where the back wound is faithfully placed ends up with the shot exiting JFK's chest which we all know is completely wrong.  The only way to make it work is to have JFK leaning forward like the HSCA diagrams show, but we all know from the Z-film that this didn't happen!  Unless JFK had a peculiar physiology, I can't see how the shot came from where the Warren Commission and HSCA said it did.  A lower angle is possible if JFK slouched somewhat (maybe 8-10 degrees, with 3 degrees of this coming from the road decline making a 5 degree JFK slouch), but it would have to be somewhere other than the TSBD as there were no low open windows on that side of the building.  The fourth or fifth floor of the Dal-Tex fits this angle, but I would expect the many people in that building to have reported such a noisy event (in the Altgens 6 photo we see people hanging out of the windows on the third floor).

A frontal shot from a low source (such as the storm drain) suffers from a similar problem because if it entered the throat it would presumably would exit via the back of the neck, which the autopsy photos don't show.  A slightly elevated frontal shot might connect with the back wound, but then the bullet should presumably hit the back of the limo somewhere, which I don't see reflected in any of the photos.

Finally, there is the possibility as mentioned by Cliff and Ron earlier that the wounds are simply not related to the same shot, and that maybe two or three shots fired from different directions are responsible.  While very tempting, this also has the problem regarding exit wounds which I don't really see in the autopsy photos.  I have heard about the idea of the back wound only being a shallow wound, but for this to have happened the bullet must have been travelling incredibly slowly which doesn't seem likely unless there was some kind of strange misfire.

In summary, I'm fairly stumped as to how the victims received their wounds.  Judging from the witnesses and the Z-film I think shots were fired at Z185 and Z220, so I do think two gunmen were involved, but apart from that I find it very hard to resolve all of the issues.

I haven't yet seen the new Josiah Thompson book, but it would be interesting to know how he deals with the first couple of shots around Z185-Z220.

I'll leave a comment on the other thread regarding the details of the windshield shot theory.

Thankyou very much Mark, I can't make an all encompassing theory for shots either. My best guess is that there is about 3/4 sec missing in the Z film after what is now Z312. I beleive this is enough time for JFK to slump due to the braking of the limo and explains the evidence of matter heading violently back, but also cascading forward. I also think that much time is sufficient to better reveal the shot impacts.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Many thanks to the high quality discussion, especially of Steven Kossor and Mark Tyler but everyone else too. I read the second half of Josiah Thompson's new book arguing for rehabilitating the dictabelt shots, but it was heavy going (even though the book is well written) and I could not follow the technical side of it. Based on the discussions here and the oral history of Officer McLain in Sneed, No More Silence--the sirens, the human whistling, and McLain's insistence on an easily recognizable different sound of a three-wheeler--the negative argument looks stronger, not that my non-expert reaction matters on that.

I had thought a modified Sibert and O'Neill interpretation was called for instead of the WC through-bullet from back entrance to throat exit of JFK. But I could not find a satisfactory solution to a basic question: how could a bullet possibly hit JFK in the back and only penetrate flesh ca. 2 inches without going through? What conceivable explanation is there for that? If the shot was underpowered it would have fallen short and not hit JFK's back in the first place. I have searched for a credible possible explanation for that and found no explanation. For that reason I took a renewed look at Donald Thomas's chapter 7 in Hear No Evil and his argument for a SBT to see if he could satisfactorily address the trajectory objection to the idea of a back-to-throat JFK through-shot.

I see no other alternative now than a back-to-throat through-shot, because of the impossibility of explaining a bullet that would have enough power to hit JFK's back in the first place but go no further into soft flesh than 2 inches, then come back out the same entrance wound (since there was no trace of it inside the body). Donald Thomas attempts to explain the apparent contradiction between the back entrance being lower than the throat exit, with a downward slope trajectory of a shot from the rear under any construction of that shot's origin, in terms of JFK raising his right arm and leaning slightly forward. Thomas reasons that the bullet probably would not have altered in trajectory inside JFK's body in itself since the bullet did not strike bone except only glancingly. I think Thomas adequately explains the autopsists' failure to have a probe go through from the back to the throat as not decisive of anything. I cannot see that Thomas's explanation satisfactorily explains the trajectory problem however.

For this reason the only conclusion I can draw is that the bullet which entered JFK's back at a sloping-downward angle, changed direction by a certain angle upward as it passed through JFK's body to exit at the throat, passing through JFK's body at an actually slightly-upward trajectory. From all that I read, bullets can and do change directions when entering human or animal bodies. Of course a change in trajectory to slightly-upward as it exited JFK's throat is inconsistent with explaining the Connally wounds, the classic SBT, but that is a necessary consequence and simply means Connally's belief and the other arguments for JFK and Connally hit by different bullets are correct. A slightly-upward trajectory of a JFK back-to-throat shot could also remove the major objection raised by proponents of the SBT: where did the bullet that went through and exited JFK's body go, if not into Connally in front of JFK? In a slightly-upward trajectory throat exit the bullet misses Connally and either hits the windshield in front or goes over the top of the windshield in front, one or the other, and the Connally shot is a different shot. (And C399 having nothing to do with anything here, being a substitute bullet for the original stretcher bullet found at Parkland of unknown origin, for reasons set forth elsewhere.)

All of the anomalies in principle would seem explained in this construction--of a through-shot from back to throat of JFK in which the bullet's trajectory changed to slightly-upward when entering JFK's body--but it returns to the question of whether that itself is plausible, given no direct hit to solid bone of that bullet. Thomas assumed the lack of a hit to solid bone means the trajectory would not have changed. Yet after a lot of struggle with these questions, I do not see any other alternative than that that is what happened--what must have happened.

I do not have experience or expertise in firearms or hunting or medical ballistics, I only know what I read, but I recall the odd description of the JFK back entrance wound in which there was more abrasion or powder burn on the lower edges of that entrance wound than the top, which all else being equal, would suggest a bullet entering with an upward trajectory, which of course cannot have been the case. But as I thought about it an alternative explanation occurred to me, and I ask anyone who has actual knowledge to vet or cross-examine--say whether possible or not possible--this following attempt at a theoretical proposal for how, hypothetically, a bullet entering JFK's back could have its trajectory altered upward even when striking no bone. 

I reason it could happen, if the bullet after it was fired and traveling through the air, by the time it reached JFK had started a very slight degree of tumble, not a tumble but rather the bullet did not enter exactly straight in but at a slightly oblique stance upward when it entered. The degree of oblique stance could not be much, because the JFK entrance wound does not allow for that bullet to have wobbled much. But if there were only a very slight upward stance of the bullet with respect to its trajectory at the point of entrance, it seems to me that would be sufficient cause for that bullet to be changed in trajectory upward through the rest of its course through the body--because the bullet entering at high speed follows a path of least resistance and the slight upward-pointing direction of the bullet "aims" that trajectory in the flesh toward a slightly higher angle. 

Is that possible, for those who might know the answer? 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

26 minutes ago, Greg Doudna said:

I had thought a modified Sibert and O'Neill interpretation was called for instead of the WC through-bullet from back entrance to throat exit of JFK. But I could not find a satisfactory solution to a basic question: how could a bullet possibly hit JFK in the back and only penetrate flesh ca. 2 inches without going through? What conceivable explanation is there for that? If the shot was underpowered it would have fallen short and not hit JFK's back in the first place. I have searched for a credible possible explanation for that and found no explanation.

The autopsists on the night of the autopsy speculated JFK was hit with a hi-tech round that dissolved.

It’s a mystery to me why folks can’t wrap their heads around that one.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

23 hours ago, Cliff Varnell said:

The autopsists on the night of the autopsy speculated JFK was hit with a hi-tech round that dissolved.

It’s a mystery to me why folks can’t wrap their heads around that one.

Too far-fetched, nothing in documents showing operational use of such. That the autopsists speculated it is irrelevant, just as if the autopsists speculated divine intervention that would be irrelevant.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

40 minutes ago, Greg Doudna said:

Too far-fetched, nothing in documents showing operational use of such.

Factually incorrect.


From the Church Committee testimony of CIA Director Colby: 

TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 1975. 
Testimony of William E. Colby, director of the Central Intelligence Agency. The Committee met at 10 A.M. in the Russell Building. 

Present: Senators Church, Tower, Mondale, Huddleston, Morgan, Hart of Colorado Baker, Goldwater, Mathias, and Schweiker. Also present: William G. Miller, staff director, Frederick A. 0. Schwarz, chief counsel, Curtis Smothers and Paul Michel, Committee staff members. 

Chairman Church: 
The particular case under examination today involves the illegal possession of deadly biological poisons which were retained within the CIA for five years after their destruction was ordered by the President. . . . The main questions before the Committee are why the poisons were developed in such quantities in the first place: why the Presidential order was disobeyed; and why such a serious act of insubordination could remain undetected for so many years. 

William Colby: 
The specific subject today concerns the CIA's involvement in the development of bacteriological warfare materials with the Army's Biological Laboratory at Fort Detrick, CIA's retention of an amount of shellfish toxin, and CIA's use and investigation of various chemicals and drugs. . . . Information provided by him [a CIA officer not directly associated with the project] and by two other officers aware of the project indicated that the project at Fort Detrick involved the development of bacteriological warfare agents--some lethal--and 
associated delivery systems suitable for clandestine use 
[emphasis added]. The CIA relationship with the Special Operations Division at Fort Detrick was formally established in May 1952. 

The need for such capabilities was tied to earlier Office of Strategic Services World War II experience, which included the development of two different types of agent suicide pills to be used in the event of capture and a successful operation using biological warfare materials to incapacitate a poopoo leader temporarily. 

The primary Agency interest was in the development of dissemination devices to be used with standard chemicals off the shelf. Various dissemination devices such as a fountain pen dart launcher appeared to be peculiarly suited for clandestine use. . . . A large amount of Agency attention was given to the problem of incapacitating guard dogs. Though most of the dart launchers were developed for the Army, the Agency did request the development of a small, hand-held dart launcher for its peculiar needs for this purpose. Work was also done on temporary human incapacitation techniques. These related to a desire to incapacitate captives before they could render themselves incapable of talking, or terrorists before they could take retaliatory action. [Or to prevent guard dogs from barking.] 

One such operation involved the penetration of a facility abroad for intelligence collection. The compound was guarded by watchdogs which made entry difficult even when it was empty. Darts were delivered for the operation, but were not used. 

Church: 
Have you brought with you some of those devices which would have enabled the CIA to use this poison for killing people? 

Colby: 
We have indeed. 

Church: 
Does this pistol fire the dart? 

Colby: 
Yes it does, Mr. Chairman. The round thing at the top is obviously the sight; the rest of it is what is practically a normal .45, although it is a special. However, it works by electricity. There is a battery in the handle, and it fires a small dart. [self-propelled, like a rocket.] 

Church: 
So that when it fires, it fires silently? 

Colby: 
Almost silently; yes. 

Church: 
What range does it have? 

Colby: 
One hundred meters, I believe; about 100 yards, 100 meters. 

Church: 
About 100 meters range? 

Colby: 
Yes. 

Church: 
And the dart itself, when it strikes the target, does the target know that he has been hit and [is] about to die? 

Colby: 
That depends, Mr. Chairman, on the particular dart used. There are different kinds of these flechettes that were used in various weapons systems, and a special one was developed which potentially would be able to enter the target without perception. 

Church: 
Is it not true, too, that the effort not only involved designing a gun that could strike at a human target without knowledge of the person who had been struck, but also the toxin itself would not appear in the autopsy? 

Colby: 
Well there was an attempt-- 

Church: 
Or the dart? 

Colby: 
Yes; so there was no way of perceiving that the target was hit. 

 

Quote

That the autopsists speculated it is irrelevant, just as if the autopsists speculated divine intervention that would be irrelevant.  

You don’t know what you’re talking about.

Edited by Cliff Varnell
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 2/14/2021 at 7:33 AM, Greg Doudna said:

Many thanks to the high quality discussion, especially of Steven Kossor and Mark Tyler but everyone else too. I read the second half of Josiah Thompson's new book arguing for rehabilitating the dictabelt shots, but it was heavy going (even though the book is well written) and I could not follow the technical side of it. Based on the discussions here and the oral history of Officer McLain in Sneed, No More Silence--the sirens, the human whistling, and McLain's insistence on an easily recognizable different sound of a three-wheeler--the negative argument looks stronger, not that my non-expert reaction matters on that.

I had thought a modified Sibert and O'Neill interpretation was called for instead of the WC through-bullet from back entrance to throat exit of JFK. But I could not find a satisfactory solution to a basic question: how could a bullet possibly hit JFK in the back and only penetrate flesh ca. 2 inches without going through? What conceivable explanation is there for that? If the shot was underpowered it would have fallen short and not hit JFK's back in the first place. I have searched for a credible possible explanation for that and found no explanation. For that reason I took a renewed look at Donald Thomas's chapter 7 in Hear No Evil and his argument for a SBT to see if he could satisfactorily address the trajectory objection to the idea of a back-to-throat JFK through-shot.

I see no other alternative now than a back-to-throat through-shot, because of the impossibility of explaining a bullet that would have enough power to hit JFK's back in the first place but go no further into soft flesh than 2 inches, then come back out the same entrance wound (since there was no trace of it inside the body). Donald Thomas attempts to explain the apparent contradiction between the back entrance being lower than the throat exit, with a downward slope trajectory of a shot from the rear under any construction of that shot's origin, in terms of JFK raising his right arm and leaning slightly forward. Thomas reasons that the bullet probably would not have altered in trajectory inside JFK's body in itself since the bullet did not strike bone except only glancingly. I think Thomas adequately explains the autopsists' failure to have a probe go through from the back to the throat as not decisive of anything. I cannot see that Thomas's explanation satisfactorily explains the trajectory problem however.

For this reason the only conclusion I can draw is that the bullet which entered JFK's back at a sloping-downward angle, changed direction by a certain angle upward as it passed through JFK's body to exit at the throat, passing through JFK's body at an actually slightly-upward trajectory. From all that I read, bullets can and do change directions when entering human or animal bodies. Of course a change in trajectory to slightly-upward as it exited JFK's throat is inconsistent with explaining the Connally wounds, the classic SBT, but that is a necessary consequence and simply means Connally's belief and the other arguments for JFK and Connally hit by different bullets are correct. A slightly-upward trajectory of a JFK back-to-throat shot could also remove the major objection raised by proponents of the SBT: where did the bullet that went through and exited JFK's body go, if not into Connally in front of JFK? In a slightly-upward trajectory throat exit the bullet misses Connally and either hits the windshield in front or goes over the top of the windshield in front, one or the other, and the Connally shot is a different shot. (And C399 having nothing to do with anything here, being a substitute bullet for the original stretcher bullet found at Parkland of unknown origin, for reasons set forth elsewhere.)

All of the anomalies in principle would seem explained in this construction--of a through-shot from back to throat of JFK in which the bullet's trajectory changed to slightly-upward when entering JFK's body--but it returns to the question of whether that itself is plausible, given no direct hit to solid bone of that bullet. Thomas assumed the lack of a hit to solid bone means the trajectory would not have changed. Yet after a lot of struggle with these questions, I do not see any other alternative than that that is what happened--what must have happened.

I do not have experience or expertise in firearms or hunting or medical ballistics, I only know what I read, but I recall the odd description of the JFK back entrance wound in which there was more abrasion or powder burn on the lower edges of that entrance wound than the top, which all else being equal, would suggest a bullet entering with an upward trajectory, which of course cannot have been the case. But as I thought about it an alternative explanation occurred to me, and I ask anyone who has actual knowledge to vet or cross-examine--say whether possible or not possible--this following attempt at a theoretical proposal for how, hypothetically, a bullet entering JFK's back could have its trajectory altered upward even when striking no bone. 

I reason it could happen, if the bullet after it was fired and traveling through the air, by the time it reached JFK had started a very slight degree of tumble, not a tumble but rather the bullet did not enter exactly straight in but at a slightly oblique stance upward when it entered. The degree of oblique stance could not be much, because the JFK entrance wound does not allow for that bullet to have wobbled much. But if there were only a very slight upward stance of the bullet with respect to its trajectory at the point of entrance, it seems to me that would be sufficient cause for that bullet to be changed in trajectory upward through the rest of its course through the body--because the bullet entering at high speed follows a path of least resistance and the slight upward-pointing direction of the bullet "aims" that trajectory in the flesh toward a slightly higher angle. 

Is that possible, for those who might know the answer? 

Thanks Greg.  Despite the huge amount of information we have, it's a surprisingly difficult crime scene to explain.  This is why it's well worth exploring different options to see which is consistent with most of the crime scene evidence, and which has the fewest loose ends.  I do agree with you that the single bullet theory is tricky to explain, but it seems to create even more complexity when you get rid of it, as many more shots seem to be required and that's very hard to match with the autopsy.

This is one of the reasons I have considered that the SBT may have come from somewhere other than the sixth floor window as the angle from that high up seems rather too steep to work.  With a shallower angle JFK doesn't need to lean so far forward like the HSCA suggested.

On the subject of bullet experiments, if you haven't already seen it this may be worth looking at:

When I saw this I realised that the theory of a bullet hitting the oak tree and being deflected to hit Tague was nonsense.  High speed bullets seem to maintain momentum well, but can wobble or tumble so it may have entered JFK slightly awkwardly as you suggest.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
 Share


×
×
  • Create New...