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The Oswald family at the Furniture Mart, a rifle scope installation in November 1963, and why it matters: a sale of the rifle before the assassination


Greg Doudna
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3 hours ago, Paul Jolliffe said:

Denny,

I share your skepticism of Greg's theory. However, I think we can dismiss the possibility that Michael Paine impersonated "Oswald" on the trip to the Furniture Mart - Michael Paine was 6'4" and "Oswald" was roughly 5'9". 

Thanks Paul. How did the Furniture Mart witnesses characterize the height of the man?

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10 hours ago, Larry Hancock said:

I find this a fascinating scenario - from personal experience from that period of time I would expect a gun shop to remain open on Saturday (especially during hunting season) regardless of Veterans day.  However that might actually mean only one person was working and Ryder was there alone, for at least part of the day.

I also have no trouble visualizing Oswald taking off on his own with the car to have the scope removed, Marina thinking she and the kids were just going for a short ride while he practiced driving, then getting mad at him.  It seems typical "Oswald" to me, especially if he was shielding ownership of the weapon.  Ruth not believing it happened seems standard for Ruth and Marina not wanting to upset Ruth at first and then not wanting to talk about Oswald and a rifle also strikes me as very believable.

None of that provides any corroboration but its a scenario I find very consistent with all three personalities as I've come to visualize them and it would resolve an incident that has bothered me since I first learned about it. 

Yes Larry, the mention of Marina "getting mad at [Lee]"--I get the impression Lee was used to that quite a bit, not helped by financial circumstances. The character profiles you describe sound right. 

Edited by Greg Doudna
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19 hours ago, Denny Zartman said:

I don't see anywhere in the article where you present any evidence that Oswald was intending to sell the rifle. Did he place a "for sale" notice somewhere, or is there testimony of someone who discussed purchasing the rifle from him? Is there someone who said Lee discussed wanting to sell his rifle?

I intend to develop this in further detail later, but will outline where I am going with this here. No, there is no "for sale" notice or testimony that Lee discussed selling a rifle. There is no document or bill of sale, or witness testifying to the sale. The argument I have is weaker than that, nevertheless it is an argument. It centers on a witnessing of Oswald's presence at the Dobbs House restaurant on N. Beckley right near Oswald's rooming house in Oak Cliff where he was a regular for breakfast ca. 7 am before taking his bus to work. But on Thu Nov 21, 1963, the day before the assassination, Oswald was at the Dobbs House not at 7 am but 10 am, from high-quality witness testimony. That is highly unusual, yet the quality of the witness testimony is such that it was the fact, the only day known when Oswald was not on time to work (presumably he took a bus in to work after that 10 am). His work records at TSBD show him there since 8 am but that cannot be helped; he was at the Dobbs House at 10 am on Nov 21. Then separately there is also what is arguably also a credible witness testimony, of Ralph Yates' hitchhiker carrying a rifle-sized package, which has been dismissed because he had an (extremely sad) mental breakdown days later, yet on good grounds was not lying about nor hallucinating his story of his hitchhiker. The time and date Yates picked up his hitchhiker was Thu Nov 21, 10:30 am, at the N. Beckley Street entrance to the Thornton freeway. 

The independent juxtaposition in timing is the argument for connecting the two. Yates' hitchhiker was not Oswald (Yates thought it was but that was a mistaken ID), but the hitchhiker with his rifle-sized package was carried by Yates from Beckley Street, immediately following the time of Oswald highly unusually at the Dobbs House at 10 am, dropped off (the hitchhiker) in Dealey Plaza, actually across the street from the TSBD. I am connecting Oswald at the Dobbs House at 10 am with the non-Oswald hitchhiker carrying a rifle from Oak Cliff to Dealey Plaza at 10:30. I am suggesting this was the sale of Oswald's rifle, with the receiver of Oswald's rifle from that sale being that hitchhiker of Yates.

The argument that that was a rifle sale is:

  • it had to be something unusual for Oswald to be at a restaurant at 10 am on a weekday instead of at work
  • a hitchhiker is witnessed carrying a package consistent with a rifle from proximity of Oswald's location at 10:30 that day to proximity of the presence of Oswald's rifle the next day used in the assassination of JFK
  • Oswald is attested in possession of an unusual and unexplained amount of money--in cash--hours later after his 10 am breakfast at the Dobbs House. That night he went to Irving and gave Marina $170, which in today's money is in the neighborhood of $1500-2000, in cash, this from a man working at a job barely above minimum wage. I am suggesting that both the unexplained money in possession of Lee later that same day, as well as Lee's sudden desire to go to Irving that Thursday evening and try to convince Marina to rent an apartment with him that very weekend, is related to a sale of his rifle earlier that day. 
  • the reconstruction of the rifle sale renders explicable why Oswald, who had no money to spare, ten days earlier had paid to have the scope put back on the Mannlicher-Carcano, a scope installation for which he personally had no use.

There is more to be developed from this than this, but this is the basics of the argument for the rifle sale itself. It also opens up for consideration a mechanism for how the Mannlicher-Carcano could come to be in the TSBD on Fri Nov 22 without Oswald's knowledge.

 

Edited by Greg Doudna
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I have something to say regarding the rifle order issue but first I have a question, simply as a request for information. For those who think Oswald never had a rifle, how is it explained that when police came to Ruth Paine's house after the assassination, in Marina's first known contact with law enforcement following the assassination, Marina, first words out of her mouth, when asked if there was a rifle in the house, told police that Lee had kept a rifle in the garage and showed police the blanket? This was before Marina was sequestered for questioning in the days ahead. Is there some notion that Marina was coerced or threatened into saying that? If so, would such hidden-hand coercing or threatening have occurred before or after the assassination? How long before (or after)? Thanks--  

 

 

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, Greg Doudna said:

I have something to say regarding the rifle order issue but first I have a question, simply as a request for information. For those who think Oswald never had a rifle, how is it explained that when police came to Ruth Paine's house after the assassination, in Marina's first known contact with law enforcement following the assassination, Marina, first words out of her mouth, when asked if there was a rifle in the house, told police that Lee had kept a rifle in the garage and showed police the blanket? This was before Marina was sequestered for questioning in the days ahead. Is there some notion that Marina was coerced or threatened into saying that? If so, would such hidden-hand coercing or threatening have occurred before or after the assassination? How long before (or after)? Thanks--  

 

 

 

 

 

Is it certain the question was so precise? i.e. did he have “rifle” on the premises as opposed to did he have “possessions” on the premises.

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Excursus: Oswald, the rifle, and the $21.45 money order

On the belief that Oswald never had the rifle found on the sixth floor of the TSBD, I started reading John Armstrong but found it frustrating due to unsubstantiated assertions, so turned instead to David Josephs' "The Klein Rifle" (https://test-ks-and-k.org/images/pdf/JosephsRiflePart1.pdf), which seems to be the best case for that argument, clearer and better presented.

I don't think the Hidell purchase order in the envelope postmarked 10:30 am Tue March 12, 1963 which arrived to Klein's in Chicago with payment enclosed Mar 13, were forged by the FBI. I think the 40” Mannlicher-Carcano with a scope, serial number C2766, was shipped to Oswald’s PO Box in fulfillment of an order for a 36” with scope.

However the U.S. postal money order supposed to be in Oswald's handwriting, dated Tue March 12, 1963, for the amount of $21.45, got my attention, for it indeed has issues going to the question of authenticity. But first to get one red herring out of the way: one thing which is not a problem is a claim repeatedly made that a "12" in the postmark means a "Zone 12" which was a long distance from Oswald's workplace, such that it is unreasonable that Oswald on foot or by bus could have conveyed himself to mail the letter in that zone before 10:30 am that morning.

There is nothing to that. A veteran US Post Office supervisor, Jimmy Orr of Greenville, S.C., in 2012 explained as convincingly as can be, that the "12" refers to a machine number doing postmarking, a machine which would have been located in the Dallas Post Office main office, and not a geographical zone. David von Pein did the correspondence that turned up this information. Jimmy Orr:

"[T]he postmark seems to be of a Model G flyer, of which we still use one in Greenville [South Carolina] to this day. An electric machine, it probably dates to the 1930's, but is still useful to cancel heavy, non-automation pieces. 

"There would have been absolutely NO local zone classification for cancellations in 1963, as there are absolutely none to date on this equipment. The number 12, most assuredly, would have indicated a machine number at the processing plant in Dallas. Nothing more, nothing less. I have been with USPS for 29 years now. Nothing on a postmark other than city, state, and zip code has EVER indicated an origination.

"[The] MPO [Main Post Office] in Dallas would have typically had a large workroom area with multiple flyer machines in 1963. It is also quite probable that they had as many as twelve mechanized Mark II cancellation machines. The dies would be nearly identical and would merely indicate the machine number. I believe, firmly, that no conclusion can be drawn about the origin of the letter within the Dallas community by observing the postmark.

"Also David, the time of 10:30 [which is also stamped on Commission Exhibit 773] would indicate the 'clearance' time for delivery. Anything before 10:30 would constitute next day service. That which was received later would not. There would have been ABSOLUTELY no changing of the dies to reflect what time the letter was received . . . with the letter volume of 1963 as compared to today's internet generation . . . the notion is ludicrous . . . cancellations in Dallas at the time were probably upwards of 300,000 letters per day."

(. . .)

"[I]t IS my professional opinion that the letter was cancelled at the Dallas Main Post Office. The number 12 merely indicates a Model G flyer (much like a Singer sewing machine) or a Mark II unit at the Main Office. 

"I cannot tell you where it was dropped into a mail slot, could have been downtown or might have been in Oak Cliff. Delivery zones are for delivery, there is no such designation for collections. Few living souls actually realize what 100,000 letters look like, much less how the tooth-fairy sorts them all out. Dallas City was by 1963 shipping everything to the SCF. It would not have been practical, nor plausable to run a cancellation unit in every nook and cranny of the city and suburbs.” (http://jfk-archives.blogspot.com/search?q=zone+12)

The same source had this to say concerning whether the Hidell rifle order postmarked Dallas 10:30 am Mar 12 could be received Mar 13 by Klein's in Chicago, which according to the Klein’s documents is what did happen:

"Cancelled in Dallas by 10:30 AM and flown to Chicago that afternoon. Arrival for mail processing at a Chicago General Mail Facility during the early morning hours of the 13th and on the street for delivery to Klein's that same day. Makes perfect sense considering the volumes handled in 1963."

But there are three problems that are sufficiently serious to lead to the conclusion that the money order is not authentic:

  • There is no bank processing stamping information.
  • The serial number on the money order is representative of numbers expected in a ca. late 1963 or early 1964 time frame, and is not consistent with numbers known and expected in mid-March 1963.
  • The logistical difficulty in how to account for a money order purchased at the downtown Dallas post office on the morning of Mar 12 before 10:30 am, by an Oswald whose time is narrowly accounted for continuously since 8 am that morning at Jaggars. (The problem is not in Oswald mailing of an envelope with payment in it which would be postmarked 10:30 am Mar 12; the problem is in the impossibility of Oswald buying the postal money order after 8 am on Mar 12.)

These three issues are substantial, without satisfactory explanation, such that I do think that money order was fabricated. This does not mean Klein's never was paid for its rifle or did not ship or deliver it; they were and they did. What has happened is the original payment instrument—the original money order or check--the one actually included in the envelope with the order and processed for payment by Klein’s, has had photos of a created replacement money order presented to investigators represented as images of that original payment instrument. Additional details of that money order are consistent with the interpretation that it is a fabrication:

  • The original is missing, disappeared, gone to "missing evidence" heaven--unavailable to be checked by document authentification experts.
  • The reported circumstances of its original find are odd.
  • There was no reported verification from the Federal Reserve in Kansas City of finding the record of that money order there, where it was supposedly sent and where routine verification was expected, even though an active search for such was known to have been underway.
  • There is bleed-through in the photographs of that money order which some think indicate a phenomenon of thinner paper stock having been photographed than thicker genuine US postal money order card stock.
  • There is no verification of existence of that money order among Klein's microfilmed other records associated with that rifle.
  • A $21.45 bank deposit is in Klein records identified by Klein’s as being the payment for the Hidell rifle shipped to Oswald’s post office box, but there is no verification that that $21.45 was from the $21.45 US postal money order at issue.

There is one counterargument urged in favor of authenticity of that Mar 12 postal money order: the handwriting on it was judged to be probably Oswald's by handwriting examiners. However as brought out in those handwriting analysts' statements, the analyses were done on the basis of photocopies, not the original, expressly stated in two of three examiners' cases, and may have been so in the third case as well although the third anomalously reported to have examined the original item. The handwriting analysts gave emphatic disclaimers and cautions concerning analyses on the basis of photocopies; among other things photocopies make it much more difficult to detect signs of forgery if that is the case. The reasons for considering this postal money order inauthentic suggest that, in this case, the writing was made to look like Oswald's writing as part of the production of that item, but was not actually written by Oswald.  

If, however, the Mar 12 postal money order is no longer in the picture, the difficulty in how Oswald could have mailed the rifle order is resolved and disappears. He would have mailed it the previous evening with $21.45 payment included, with no conflict with his working hours. 

As for why no one at the downtown Dallas post office was found who remembered giving Oswald the 5-foot corrugated cardboard packed rifle over the counter when Oswald showed up to the counter to claim it, that is not an argument that therefore no rifle was received by Oswald, he had no rifle, and all the other paperwork and witnesses saying Oswald had a rifle should be rejected. That is a case of a conclusion not following from the fact cited, when it means instead some employee decided not to step forward and volunteer that they had done that. It simply means some unknown employee kept quiet, did not want to be made public and go down in history to the world as one who gave the rifle to the assassin who killed President Kennedy changing the history of America for a generation.

Some also think Oswald could not have obtained the rifle package addressed to Hidell over the counter, therefore Oswald did not have the rifle in the months to follow since he could not have obtained it to begin with due to the difference in the name. Again here is Post Office supervisor Jimmy Orr.

"The subject of whether Hidell was on the [post office box] application or not is irrelevant. Post Office Window Clerks do not reference applications when delivering parcels across the counter. Not even by today's security standards.

"If Oswald was required to sign for the delivery, he simply produced a DD-217 bearing the name ALEK JAMES HIDELL. We are talking about a moment in time when there was no such thing as a picture ID, and a driver's license was little more than an engraved metal dog tag. My first law enforcement credentials in South Carolina during the mid 1970's did not bear a photograph.

"The handwriting analysis performed is sufficient alone to indicate him as to the box rental and the order of the rifle. Also, the interpretation of Postal Regulation varies from office to office. There is generally no prescribed enforcement, not then, and not now."

But why would the original form of payment have involved a high-stakes substitution of a fabricated replacement payment instrument, which is serious business? Unknown, but there must have been some reason, some good reason, we just do not know what it is. 

The possible significance of "DF Drittal"

The one clue based on known data that I can think of is this. In Oswald's order for the revolver--his other mail-order firearm--not only did he use one alias, AJ Hiddel, but he used a second, "DF Drittal", who signed vouching for the good character of purchaser AJ Hiddel.

Given that DF Drittal was a known second alias in use by Oswald at about the same time in at least that one instance, my theory is that “DF Drittal” appeared in some form on the payment instrument Oswald did send with his rifle order to Klein’s.

Why "DF Drittal"? Greg Parker creatively suggested DF Drittal came from a variant spelling for German "drittel", "third", and DF from German "deinst fur", "on behalf of", meaning "on behalf of a third party" (https://educationforum.ipbhost.com/topic/1605-alias-2/). While Greg P's suggestion is creative I don't think it is actually correct. 

I am intrigued by a different suggestion for interpreting Oswald's use of the name "Drittal" in the discussion here (https://educationforum.ipbhost.com/topic/15502-greg-parker-and-jim-root-this-ones-for-you/), of Jim Root and others, that (a) Oswald after his arrest unsuccessfully sought to contact an important official in the National Security Agency named John B. Hurt--not John W. Hurt in Raleigh, North Carolina--and (b) Oswald intentionally used for his second alias John B. Hurt's wife's maiden name, as a “signature” or evidence of an intelligence connection. John B. Hurt's wife was named Ana Drittell (varously spelled, e.g. Dratelle). John B. Hurt was a preeminent cryptologist, signals intelligence, Japanese expert, whose work was highly classified in 1963. Ana Drittell was a Russian emigré, a fluent speaker of Russian, and an accomplished cellist.

If Oswald's alias "Drittal" had that meaning--a connection to a figure in the top echelons of the National Security Agency—previously incomprehensible phenomena might become seen in a new light, such as the replacement of the payment instrument for the Klein's rifle (if the name "Drittal" appeared anywhere on that document), and the missing bottom part of Oswald’s post office box application which removed any names Oswald might have designated other than himself as authorized to use the box (if one of those names was “Drittal”).

Oswald’s attempt to call “John Hurt” after his arrest was quashed and failed. John B. Hunt with his signals intelligence and Japanese expertise, and wife Ana Drittell with her fluent Russian, would have been of natural interest to Oswald if their paths had crossed. There is no information that Oswald knew or knew of John B. Hurt and Ana Drittell, but it is intriguing to consider the possibility in light of the unusual name "Drittal". Oswald tried unsuccessfully to reach an otherwise-unidentified John Hurt in his most desperate hour; Oswald used the unusual name “Drittal” as an alias. Neither of these received much attention: to the public not at all; to JFK assassination researchers very little and never drawing a connection between the two. 

In short, I think the irregularities associated with some evidence with respect to the Klein’s rifle order had nothing to do with framing Oswald, and everything to do with covering up something in the history of Oswald and that rifle inconsistent with the narrative that Lee never was an operative or in a relationship with a U.S. agency.

(Further on John B. Hurt is here: https://educationforum.ipbhost.com/topic/3391-new-john-b-hurt-info/)

Edited by Greg Doudna
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"It was Oswald's rifle" is a pertinent issue to the thread. My two cents has always been that if he took it somehow to New Orleans with him that summer..how did it manage to make it back to Irving, and reside at the Paine house completely un-noticed by Ruth or her children [presumably] or Michael Paine while Lee was in parts unknown unless you believe the report that he went to Mexico.

Marina testified that Oswald practiced with the rifle alright by 'shooting leaves from trees at the park' and he also 'took it to Dallas Love Field Airport to shoot'   😆

Regarding the weapons orders...I believe that postal inspector Harry Holmes was involved mainly because he was also involved in some other assassination related issues. Holmes had access to everything related to the PO boxes that Oswald rented. Harry Holmes was a FBI asset and government insider.

What happened to the ammo? Ammunition was not found for the rifle in any of Oswald's possessions. Even Robert Oswald wondered about that.

About the rifle scope...It was mentioned that it was screwed into a mount allegedly furnished by Kleins Sports. It was simple to remove or attach. Supposedly the sniper smuggled the rifle disassembled into the building...reassembled and fired it. If that can be done, why would that person need a gunsmith for such a simple task?

These furniture store ladies would have likely remembered if they saw this family on Veteran's Day.

Highly speculative that Oswald 'borrowed' Ruth's car... That Ruth did not take her own car when she left...that Oswald would know how long she would be gone anyway or that there was any need at all for a gunsmith.

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1 hour ago, Karl Hilliard said:

"It was Oswald's rifle" is a pertinent issue to the thread. My two cents has always been that if he took it somehow to New Orleans with him that summer..how did it manage to make it back to Irving, and reside at the Paine house completely un-noticed by Ruth or her children [presumably] or Michael Paine while Lee was in parts unknown unless you believe the report that he went to Mexico.

Marina testified that Oswald practiced with the rifle alright by 'shooting leaves from trees at the park' and he also 'took it to Dallas Love Field Airport to shoot'   😆

Regarding the weapons orders...I believe that postal inspector Harry Holmes was involved mainly because he was also involved in some other assassination related issues. Holmes had access to everything related to the PO boxes that Oswald rented. Harry Holmes was a FBI asset and government insider.

What happened to the ammo? Ammunition was not found for the rifle in any of Oswald's possessions. Even Robert Oswald wondered about that.

About the rifle scope...It was mentioned that it was screwed into a mount allegedly furnished by Kleins Sports. It was simple to remove or attach. Supposedly the sniper smuggled the rifle disassembled into the building...reassembled and fired it. If that can be done, why would that person need a gunsmith for such a simple task?

These furniture store ladies would have likely remembered if they saw this family on Veteran's Day.

Highly speculative that Oswald 'borrowed' Ruth's car... That Ruth did not take her own car when she left...that Oswald would know how long she would be gone anyway or that there was any need at all for a gunsmith.

Karl, 

I agree with your general sentiment that if our "Oswald" had ordered, paid for, received, practice with, stored at Neely St., traveled with and stored on Magazine St.,  bought ammunition for, somehow hid the rifle in the Paine's station wagon without anyone knowing,  stored this Klein's rifle on the floor of the Paine's garage in a blanket without anyone knowing, and snuck it into the TSBD on November 22, 1963 without anyone knowing, then the evidence would be simple and overwhelming!

Instead, it is anything but. 

Greg's speculation about John B. Hurt is fascinating, but it is a bridge too far to speculate that because our "Oswald" might (MIGHT) have somehow known Hurt and his wife, Drittell, therefore the government's fabrication of the rifle purchase order is benign. 

No, that won't work.

The evidence that our "Oswald" did any of the above is laughable and would have been easily disproved in court at trial. 

Which is exactly why he did not live to see a trial - the case against him as a "lone nut" would have collapsed, and the evidence of a high-level conspiracy to murder the president would have been exposed. 

 

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5 hours ago, Karl Hilliard said:

"It was Oswald's rifle" is a pertinent issue to the thread. My two cents has always been that if he took it somehow to New Orleans with him that summer..how did it manage to make it back to Irving, and reside at the Paine house completely un-noticed by Ruth or her children [presumably] or Michael Paine while Lee was in parts unknown unless you believe the report that he went to Mexico.

I am not sure I understand all of this, but if you are suggesting Oswald never had a rifle in 1963, that makes no sense to me. How do you explain two DeMohrenschildts and Marina, three civilians, independently testifying under oath that they saw Lee's rifle? Marina's statements that Lee kept a rifle in Ruth Paine's garage happened from minute one of her encounters with law enforcement. Is it realistic that she was told and scripted to lie by powers other than herself, as early as early Friday afternoon Nov 22 before the first police officers even arrived? And Marina would just make up that and stick to it and never let on that that is what happened to the present day? Why suppose that to begin with?

Is there positive evidence of which you are aware that Lee did not have a rifle in 1963--that would provide positive reason to suppose all the physical evidence from Klein's and the witness testimonies saying he did have a rifle should be categorically rejected, as all forgeries and all lies? (This is not the same question as whether it is proved that he did have a rifle.)

Lee had interest in firearms according to a witness who saw him leafing through and interested in gun magazines in New Orleans. Laura Kittrell of the Texas Employment Commission who dealt with Oswald said Oswald told of his interest in firearms, while at the same time acknowledging honestly to Kittrell in agreement with some strikingly mediocre physical coordination aptitude scores that he in truth was not a very good shot. 

Greg Parker posted somewhere a statement from a young woman in New Orleans who met Oswald when her mother was helping Lee and Marina move, and according to that young woman (at the time) Oswald told her the reason he left Russia was because it was illegal to own a gun! Maybe he was joking, but still.

You ask how was the rifle conveyed in Ruth Paine's station wagon from New Orleans and in her garage without her knowing. Here I understand your argument to be: (a) if there had been a broken-down rifle wrapped and tied in a blanket, in the stuff of Lee's packed into and loaded on top of her station wagon, Ruth would have known. (b) Ruth says she did not know of any rifle. (c) Ruth tells the truth. Therefore (d) there could have been no rifle among Lee and Marina's belongings transported from New Orleans to Irving, nor in her garage among all the other stuff of Lee's stored there. 

Whereas I agree with you on "b" and "c" of what I understand to be your chain of logic here, with respect to Ruth Paine, I am not as certain as you about assumption "a", therefore "d" is not a necessary conclusion.  

I think the idea that FBI agents forged all the Klein's records is far-fetched. Among other things, to make such a whopper of a theory plausible one would want to see comparative examples, of documented cases of FBI agents forging complete inventories of paper records with the complicity of some private business, for the purpose of framing somebody in some criminal case. What are the controls on imagining things like this?

I don't think anybody at all was scripting witnesses DeMohrenschildt and DeMohrenschildt, nor do I think anybody at all was scripting Marina in those first Dallas Police encounters and early Secret Service and FBI interview reports. The famous Secret Service implied threat on her immigration status was just obviously to get her to talk, to help them in that way--but in wanting her to talk they did want the truth from her, not to be fed back some scripted false answers given her back to themselves to write in their own classified reports to their superiors!--makes no sense! If that was what was going on--for which there is not one shred of evidence--there would certainly be a separate second track of interrogation in which Marina would be asked to give truthful answers, but there is no evidence of a two-track chain of parallel interrogations, one fake, one real, conducted by the same agencies, of Marina. Marina was so scrambled in her brain at the time as it was she could barely handle one track of interrogation, let alone a second track run in parallel, and keep all the stories straight of when she was wanted to tell actual truth and when she was wanted to tell lines she had been given to say back to them. 

The evidence I see says Oswald owned a rifle and was a poor shot (both true facts), and although it was his rifle or rather the rifle that had been his, in the TSBD on Nov 22, Lee did not put it there or shoot it that day. 

5 hours ago, Karl Hilliard said:

Regarding the weapons orders...I believe that postal inspector Harry Holmes was involved mainly because he was also involved in some other assassination related issues. Holmes had access to everything related to the PO boxes that Oswald rented. Harry Holmes was a FBI asset and government insider.

Not sure I follow here either. The paperwork on the rifle order was from Klein's in Chicago. I am not sure what you are suggesting Holmes did, exactly.

Postmaster Holmes certainly was an FBI informant. Also, there was a "mail cover" on Oswald's mail done by an agency, which would be minimally all of the metadata and perhaps interception and opening of selected if not all mail that went in and out of Oswald's post office box in Dallas, however that worked exactly. Holmes would have been witting and cooperating with the agency carrying out that mail cover on Oswald. None of this I think is in serious dispute, since it is known from documents or Warren Commission executive session transcripts. But I am not sure what else you are supposing Holmes was doing that would help support that Oswald did not possess a rifle in 1963, or how it would be known that Holmes was doing that which you may be supposing.

6 hours ago, Karl Hilliard said:

What happened to the ammo? Ammunition was not found for the rifle in any of Oswald's possessions. Even Robert Oswald wondered about that.

I agree that Oswald was not shooting or using the rifle at all even for target practice in the fall of 1963, and that the lack of ammunition is an argument against Oswald having been a shooter on the sixth floor TSBD. That is in agreement with the case I am outlining. So am with you on this point (unless you mean it as an argument against possession of a rifle in storage itself).

6 hours ago, Karl Hilliard said:

About the rifle scope...It was mentioned that it was screwed into a mount allegedly furnished by Kleins Sports. It was simple to remove or attach. Supposedly the sniper smuggled the rifle disassembled into the building...reassembled and fired it. If that can be done, why would that person need a gunsmith for such a simple task?

See my Part 2 on the Irving Sports Shop, which I should be posting here in the next 1-2 days.

6 hours ago, Karl Hilliard said:

These furniture store ladies would have likely remembered if they saw this family on Veteran's Day.

This is a point that troubled me too and I thought about that. Here is my answer. First one has to assess whether the whole thing at the Furniture Mart happened, and whether it was Lee and Marina. That is a judgment call on how one assesses witness testimony. If it was Lee and Marina it can only have occurred on Nov 11 Veteran's Day since Lee was at work in the TSBD every single other weekday, and Ruth Paine was adamant that no Furniture Mart or Irving Sports Shop trip of Lee happened on a weekend when she would have known. So if it happened, it had to have been Nov 11, Veteran's Day, which by coincidence was also a day when Lee was in Irving, Ruth was gone for a planned extended part of the day, and Ruth let Lee practice parking with her car. All of these converge on Nov 11.

On why the two women's failure to remember it was Veterans Day: I have done a lot of window cleaning route work to small businesses, in which there was no fixed day of the week or the month, I simply serviced each account every calendar month. I can remember very clearly doing this or that customer or this or that phone conversation with a customer several weeks in the past, without having any idea what day of the week it was. This is the analogy I see here. Therefore I think Mrs. Whitworth, although she remembered Lee and Marina in her store, had no idea what day it was in the past, just as unless I have written records I usually cannot remember a calendar date or day of week of customers I serviced even though I remember very clearly the persons and what was said. And this includes work or phone calls on Sundays and holidays--for me it all runs together in the past. I think this is common for busy people in everyday life or in retail. I think Mrs. Whitworth and Mrs. Hunter's reconstruction that it was a Wed/Thursday when Mrs. Hunter talked about carpooling to a football game, came entirely from Mrs. Hunter, and that Mrs. Hunter was just mistaken in retrospect in her memory reconstruction. It cannot have actually happened on a Wed/Thu (Lee was at work in Dallas those days). Yet the Wed/Thu Nov 6 or 7 that Whitworth and Hunter thought it was, toward the end of the previous week, is close to the actual Nov 11 Monday that it had to have been. So the approximate time was in agreement with their memory, only the specific day was misremembered. And I suspect it was not Mrs. Whitworth misremembering anything but simply following Mrs. Hunter who did misremember. 

If that is not deemed an acceptable explanation, then you have to ask, does that mean the whole thing did not happen at all and Whitworth and Hunter imagined the whole thing? Or there was some family but misidentified by Whitworth and Hunter as Lee and Marina? Sometimes interpretation of possible anomalies is a matter of considering which line of explanation creates greater difficulties in interpretation. 

7 hours ago, Karl Hilliard said:

Highly speculative that Oswald 'borrowed' Ruth's car... That Ruth did not take her own car when she left...that Oswald would know how long she would be gone anyway or that there was any need at all for a gunsmith.

Well, Oswald was witnessed at the Furniture Mart; he drove to and from there; the car he was driving was the same blue and white matching to Ruth's; Ruth was gone for most of that day with Michael; it is very reasonable that Michael arriving to pick up Ruth would take Ruth with him in his nicer car (Citroen), leaving Ruth's car with Oswald to practice parking, in agreement with what Ruth herself said was done that day (Lee practicing parking with her car). Is that so unreasonable?

Ruth made babysitting arrangements for her own children that day and likely would have given Lee and Marina a rough estimate of time she would be gone, which in the event was either 2-3 or 5 hours depending on which memory of Ruth was the more accurate.  

Yes there would be a need for a gunsmith if Lee wanted that scope put back on and tried to put it on himself but stripped the threads, reportedly a common thing to happen. In that case it would need bore and tapping of new screw holes, and for Lee that would require a visit to a gunsmith, if he wanted that scope put back on.

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On 12/1/2021 at 3:19 AM, Ty Carpenter said:

If removal of the scope was a simple process of unscrewing the base, would it not be just as simple to re-install the scope in reverse order? Thereby negating the need for a gunsmith?

Ditto.

For 20 years of my life I worked with furniture-making equipment all types.  

Now, siting in a rifle scope is done at a shooting range, and may require shims, as stated by the FBI.

That would indicate a scope so limited in internal adjustments, that one could not adjust the scope except by manipulating the base of the scope (where it attaches to the gun) a wee bit, here and there. 

Maybe that is what Oswald was after---he wanted an expert to insert some shims. But who knows? 

If Oswald was planning a crime, he would use his own name at the repair shop...unless he wanted to leave another paper trail?

That seems possible.  

 

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9 hours ago, Greg Doudna said:

I am not sure I understand all of this, but if you are suggesting Oswald never had a rifle in 1963, that makes no sense to me. How do you explain two DeMohrenschildts and Marina, three civilians, independently testifying under oath that they saw Lee's rifle?

Yes there would be a need for a gunsmith if Lee wanted that scope put back on and tried to put it on himself but stripped the threads

 
 

Quote

Mr. JENNER. This was a weapon? Did you go in and look?
Mr. De MOHRENSCHILDT. No; I didn't look at the gun. I was still standing. The closet was open. Jeanne was looking at it ...
Mr. De MOHRENSCHILDT. He said "I go out and do target shooting. I like target shooting." So out of the pure, really jokingly I told him "Are you then the guy who took a pot shot at General Walker?" And he smiled to that, because just a few days before there was an attempt at General Walker's life, and it was very highly publicized in the papers, and I knew that Oswald disliked General Walker, you see. So I took a chance and I asked him this question, you see, and I can clearly see his face, you know.
He sort of shriveled, you see, when I asked this question.

Didn't look at the gun but saw it anyway?

Who told you Oswald 'stripped the threads'?

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15 hours ago, Greg Doudna said:

  Marina... testifying under oath that [she] saw Lee's rifle? 

 

 

On 11/30/2021 at 6:52 PM, Joseph McBride said:

Armstrong proves, with exhaustive research, that Oswald did not own either of the guns entered into evidence.

Marina lied...she admitted so-- https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/politics/1978/09/14/oswald-widow-says-she-lied-to-the-fbi/5ca54535-f91f-422e-be79-f45392ee20b5/

The more she discussed the rifle, the more convoluted the lies became. It is mentioned that she was untruthful about meeting the furniture store ladies. [Which actually bolstered the rife ownership] This was allegedly because she didn't want Ruth to find out about Lee driving the car. At the time of the testimony that was a moot point because Lee was dead and Marina no longer lived with Ruth anyway.

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3 hours ago, Karl Hilliard said:

Marina lied...she admitted so-- https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/politics/1978/09/14/oswald-widow-says-she-lied-to-the-fbi/5ca54535-f91f-422e-be79-f45392ee20b5/

The more she discussed the rifle, the more convoluted the lies became. It is mentioned that she was untruthful about meeting the furniture store ladies. [Which actually bolstered the rife ownership] This was allegedly because she didn't want Ruth to find out about Lee driving the car. At the time of the testimony that was a moot point because Lee was dead and Marina no longer lived with Ruth anyway.

No Marina did not admit in the article you give of any lying concerning the rifle, and did not admit to any lying at all in her Warren Commission testimony. Now there may or may not have been lies concerning the rifle from Marina, but you are saying Marina admitted there were in this article, and that is not an accurate representation of what this article says. The article tells of Marina's 1978 testimony to HSCA. Here is the relevant (referring to the early-days first interrogations of Secret Service and FBI):

"'The FBI was sometimes a little too brutal,' she protested. 'In some ways I wanted to punish them by giving incorrect information.'

"Accordingly, Porter said, she did not tell the FBI of Oswald's trip to the Cuban embassy in Mexico City in September 1963. She denied seeing any ammunition around the houses and apartments where they lived. She even lied to the Secret Service, although 'they were the nice guys,' when she told them Oswald had never used the alias of Alek Hidell.

"'I thought if I told them about Mexico (City), I would be as responsible as he was for what he did,' she told the committee. 'I was trying to protect myself as well.' As for misleading the Secret Service, she said, 'my emotional conditions weren't quite normal.'

"Despite all this, Porter insisted, 'when I give testimony to the Warren Commission, it was the truth.'"

(. . .)

"She denied that she was ever pressured to give any evidence which she knew to be false. She said she misled them at first because of 'human mistakes, human error in my character.'"

But to change the subject back to the subject, what is your theory of the Furniture Mart sighting of Lee and Marina with Lee coming in asking for a gunsmith? Your take on it, your interpretation?

Edited by Greg Doudna
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Marina lied. She admitted lying and the Commission attorneys stated that she lied. So what did she lie about? Her age maybe?

 

Quote

 

Repeating Stories Which Even the Warren Commission Rejected

This lawyerly habit of preferring convenient but discredited witnesses is widespread throughout the book. With respect to Oswald's prior use of weapons (another highly disputable area) he accepts, as did the Warren Commission, the testimony of Marina Oswald. In so doing he does nothing to rebut the finding of Warren Commission Counsel Norman Redlich in February 1964, that Marina "has repeatedly lied to the Secret Service, the FBI, and this Commission on matters which are of vital concern."

Given this unrebutted memo, it is hard to excuse the Warren Commission for relying on Marina's testimony that the Mannlicher-Carcano "was the 'fateful rifle of Lee Oswald.' " (16) But Posner resuscitates a story from Marina which even the Warren Commission, knowing the story's history, discounted as having "no probative value." (17)

Marina said, "Then he got dressed and put on a good suit. I saw that he took a pistol. I asked him where he was going, and why he was getting dressed. He answered, 'Nixon is coming...' " She did not know who Nixon was, but was determined that Lee should not leave the house with the pistol. She asked him to join her in the bathroom, and when he entered she jumped out and slammed the door shut. Bracing her feet against the nearby wall, she struggled as hard as she could to keep the door closed against his efforts to push out. "I remember that I held him," she said. "We actually struggled for several minutes and then he quieted down... At first he was furious, but as he calmed, Oswald agreed to strip to his underwear, and stayed home reading the remainder of the day. (18)

We can only repeat here a few of the problems with this story, which at the time engendered a number of supporting statements to the FBI that were later hastily recanted:

According to one version of this latest story from Marina, Oswald had "intended to shoot Nixon" in Dallas; and she "had locked Lee Harvey Oswald in the bathroom the entire day... to prevent him from doing so"... Faced with the fact that the Oswald bathroom, like all others, locked from the inside, Marina then told the FBI... that in April 1963 "she forcibly held the bathroom door shut by holding on to the knob and bracing her feet against the wall"... Finally she would tell the Warren Commission... that she and her much stronger husband "struggled for several minutes" inside the bathroom... Faced with other, irreducible difficulties in this Nixon story, the Warren Commission discreetly concluded it was of "no probative value." (19)

Note here that Posner has glossed over the inconsistencies in two incompatible stories by attempting to present them as one. In fact if Marina was outside holding on to the knob, she could not have simultaneously been inside struggling with her husband.

http://www.assassinationweb.com/scott.htm

 

Quote

...what is your theory of the Furniture Mart sighting of Lee and Marina with Lee coming in asking for a gunsmith? Your take on it, your interpretation?

I am afraid that I have no theories or interpretation. I am skeptical of the official story.  Marina [for years] advances that Lee was not guilty of murder and that the Warren Report is a lie.  https://novemberdays1963.tumblr.com/post/37177099041/marina-oswald-porter-on-oprah-1996

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