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An appeal to end the unjust abuse of Ruth Paine over the "Walker Note"

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In the Max Good film, "The Assassination & Mrs. Paine", a longstanding accusation leveled against Ruth Paine by some conspiracy-theorist researchers, without any evidence--entirely unsubstantiated imagination--is presented in the form of an insinuation: that a note written by Oswald at the time of the Walker house shooting and hidden by Marina in a book by Marina's account, was fabricated and put in that book, not by Marina, but by Ruth Paine. In this topic I intend first to show how baseless this accusation is which has been leveled against Ruth Paine. Then I intend to show why there is no need to deny Oswald's authorship of the Walker Note in a true argument for Oswald's innocence of attempted murder of Walker. 

As is familiar to everyone here, the "Walker Note" is so called even though the note itself makes no mention of Walker. It is a note written in Russian in which Lee gives instructions to Marina of what to do if and when Lee is arrested for some unstated reason. From the film, "The Assassination & Mrs. Paine":

DiEugenio: “Seven or eight days after the assassination Ruth Paine says she has to return a couple of books to Marina. Out of nowhere, in one of those books, she accidentally finds this note which the FBI turned into a piece of evidence about the Walker shooting. By the time that gets to the Warren Commission, this is supposed to be a precedent for Oswald shooting Kennedy.”

According to all reporting at the time, DiEugenio misspoke here: Ruth did not find that note. The note had been hidden by Marina in one of her books, Ruth handed the book with the note in it along with other items to the Irving police to convey to Marina, and the note was found by the Secret Service. And, it was not the FBI which turned that note into evidence related to the Walker shooting. It was the contents of the note and what Marina said about it which did that.

Contrary to a persistent notion in JFK conspiracy-believer circles, there is not one shred of evidence Ruth Paine had anything to do with the Walker Note. Ruth physically transferred Marina's book to Irving police to convey to Marina which had the note in it, but Marina said she, Marina, had put that note there in that book. And the handwriting of the note is Oswald's.

But on the logic that since Ruth had physical opportunity to plant that note if she were evil, some conspiracy-theory believers conclude that therefore that is what Ruth did. That is: theoretical possibility plus "don't like her looks" gives logical conclusion that Ruth Paine (with no prior criminal history or evidence of wrongdoing) did forge and/or plant it, q.e.d. Airtight logic!

DiEugenio: The Secret Service returned that note to Ruth saying, This is yours, isn't it? (laughs) (laughing) That's how suspicious the Secret Service was of Ruth Paine. They thought she wrote the note!”

After the Secret Service discovered the note written in Russian (Cyrillic)--which they could not read; it is not clear if they had opportunity yet to have it translated--the Secret Service naturally wanted to know what is going on, and asked Ruth if the note was hers, their first thought being that Ruth may have been passing a note to Marina. DiEugenio represents by his laughter that he considers the very asking of the question by the Secret Service, even though the question was answered by Ruth and Ruth's answer was accepted by the Secret Service, as indication that Ruth is suspicious. 

The handwriting of the note was verified as Oswald's from expert testimony. James Cadigan, FBI questioned-documents examiner of 23 years experience, testified to the Warren Commission that the handwriting was from Oswald's hand. The later HSCA obtained three handwriting experts to evaluate documents. Two declined to assess the Walker Note because of its being in Cyrillic. The third, Joseph McNally, 37 years experience in questioned-document examination, found conclusively that it was written by the same hand as Oswald letters to Marina in the Soviet Union, i.e. written by Oswald. 

That is two expert testimonies, against zero expert testimonies finding differently. That is simply from analysis of handwriting alone. In addition to the handwriting analysis, from the distinct method of comparison of spelling and grammar, there has been found a great difference between Oswald's Russian writing and Ruth Paine's Russian writing: Oswald's written Russian has many grammatical errors and misspellings whereas Ruth Paine's written Russian is correct grammar and correct spelling.

So any notion that Ruth Paine forged that letter should be dispensed with, because: there is no positive evidence whatsoever that she did, and there is overwhelming evidence that she did not. That is not quite how DiEugenio sees it though. Something to do with fingerprints.

The Walker Note and fingerprints

In the film:

DiEugenio: “The [Edwin Walker house] shooter was thirty yards away from a stationary target, and he missed. But yet we're supposed to believe that Oswald hit a moving target from as far away as 270 feet. There were seven fingerprints taken off the so-called Walker Note. None of them match Lee. None of them match Marina.”

If DiEugenio is wishing to imply that neither Lee nor Marina handled that letter and therefore it was forged, that does not follow from the fact cited. 

According to reference sources, methods of lifting fingerprints from paper in use by the FBI in 1963 were good at lifting recent fingerprints but not so good at lifting fingerprints from paper left seven months earlier. The Walker Note was checked for fingerprints in the FBI lab in Dec 1963. M. Edwin O'Neill, "Development of Latent Finger-Prints on Paper", Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology 28 (1937): 432-41: 

“The development of latent fingerprints on paper, however, usually presents a problem of greater difficulty. Due to the absorbent nature of most papers, which results in the penetration of the watery secretion into the paper and the migration of at least some of its components (e.g. chlorides or sulphates) laterally within the paper, the simple mechanical process of development used on hard non-porous objects is inadequate in practical investigations where several days or even months have elapsed since a document or other paper article received the fingerprint impressions (. . .) under ordinary circumstances successful development cannot be effected after a few weeks, and in some cases the impressions may be lost after a few days.”  (pp. 432-33)

The method used by the FBI to obtain the fingerprints from the Walker Note is not stated in the FBI letter informing of the results (https://www.maryferrell.org/showDoc.html?docId=62287#relPageId=21), but the FBI method for paper or cardboard appears to have been silver nitrate (based on this: https://www.maryferrell.org/showDoc.html?docId=946#relPageId=590 ["Using the silver nitrate method, the FBI developed nine identifiable latent fingerprints and four identifiable latent palmprints on Box A [TSBD 6th floor], seven identifiable fingerprints and two identifiable palmprints on Box B...", etc.]). 

Wang et al., "Fluorescent Nanomaterials for the Development of Latent Fingerprints in Forensic Sciences", Advanced Functional Materials, April 2017:

“The silver nitrate method is an old approach to developing latent fingerprints on the porous surfaces. (. . .) The silver nitrate method is a simple and effective technique to develop latent fingerprints on normal porous substrates and some water-repelling surfaces. However, it is suggested that the age of latent fingerprints should not be older than one week.

Fingerprints therefore could be obtained and matched to handlers of the Walker Note from a recent time before the prints were lifted in early Dec 1963, but fingerprints would either much less likely or not at all be obtained from anyone handling that paper in April 1963, seven months earlier. Therefore the most likely source of the seven fingerprints on that note is one or more persons who handled the physical note between the time the note was found by the Secret Service and the time it entered the FBI lab in Washington, D.C. There is no information in those fingerprints relevant to April 1963.

It is not surprising that neither Lee nor Marina's fingerprints would survive on the note if the note had been written and handled by them seven months earlier in April 1963. 

Since absence of fingerprints on the Walker Note is not exculpatory of any person from having handled the paper seven months earlier, the fingerprints, as stated, give zero useful information. Those seven prints do not exclude anyone from having handled the paper seven months earlier. That raises the question of what the point is in mentioning those fingerprints at all, since they convey no meaningful information. The only purpose served by DiEugenio’s mention of the fingerprints, and the inclusion of that soundbite in the film, seems solely to insinuate suspicion of Ruth to viewers who have no means to know better, no means to know that there are no grounds for suspicion of anything from the data cited.

While setting up an insinuation that there is something amiss with Ruth Paine in that meaningless data of the fingerprint report, at the same time "The Assassination & Mrs. Paine" fails to inform the viewer of the highly relevant information that the handwriting of the note was conclusively found to be Oswald's. The film suggests baseless and outrageous insinuations against Ruth Paine—insinuations that Ruth Paine forged Lee's note to Marina, planted it, lied about it, did so to frame Lee! terrible, baseless things!-- which not only have no positive evidence but are counterindicated by negative evidence which the film does not disclose. The expert testimony that the Walker Note was Oswald’s handwriting should have been disclosed in the film.

The Walker Note does not mention Walker but it was written spring 1963 compatible in time with the Walker house shooting, and it was written by Oswald. Those are the facts. Starting from those two facts interpretation can then be debated. Bringing up fingerprints without explaining that no point is established or indicated, just a baseless insinuation left hanging in the air as one more item in a film listing allegations against Ruth Paine, is not right.

The Walker note is genuine and it is probably true that Lee told Marina he took a shot at Walker, but there is more there than meets the eye: making the real case that Lee did not attempt to murder Walker 

Bill Simpich (in “The Assassination & Mrs. Paine): “… A lot of people think frankly that [General Edwin] Walker set up the shooting himself.”

On April 10, 1963, a shot was fired through a window into the Dallas home of General Walker which Walker says narrowly missed him sitting at a desk at the time. The HSCA, in disagreement with the Warren Commission, found that the bullet of the Walker house shooting did not come from the same rifle found on the 6th floor of the Texas School Book Depository (“[The Mannlicher-Carcano] could not have fired the Walker bullet. Oswald’s alleged rifle fired 6.5-ram ammunition, copper jacketed while the Walker bullet was a steel jacketed 30.06” [HSCA 6.296]). Nevertheless testimony from Marina, photographs of Walker’s house and vicinity found among Lee’s belongings, and the note Marina hid in her book, argue that Lee was involved, and if Marina is to be believed said he fired the shot. 

The question is whether Walker was in the room when the shot was fired. Dallas police who responded to the scene reportedly suspected Walker had faked it. Walker’s injuries consisted of either two (initial police report) or three (Walker, later) lightly bleeding surface wounds on the skin of the outside of Walker’s right forearm. Those injuries could easily have been self-inflicted by means of pressing one’s forearm down on broken glass on a flat surface. 

As for Oswald’s involvement, there is the credible claim of Dallas security professional and businessman Bradford Angers of personal knowledge that Oswald had infiltrated Walker’s group and took the shot with the assistance of a Walker employee, which called for but never received investigation (reported in Dick Russel, The Man Who Knew Too Much [1992], 325-27). 

Independently, interviews by Gayle Nix Jackson of two sons of Walker aide Robert Surrey give additional cause to consider that Oswald was known to a Walker aide and the shot may have been a stunt with the approval of Walker (Gayle Nix Jackson, Pieces of the Puzzle [2017], 88-237). 

Also, that might not have been the first time Walker considered such a stunt. Author Jeffrey Caufield reported that Minutemen founder Robert DePugh told him in interviews in 1999 and 2000 that in early 1962 Walker asked DePugh to do a fake kidnapping of Walker to be blamed on communists, for the purpose of creating sympathetic publicity which would assist Walker in being elected governor of Texas in 1962 (Caufield, General Walker and the Murder of President Kennedy [2015], 339). 

After the shot fired April 10, 1963, Walker implied to reporters that evening that domestic communists had done it (the “other side”) and criticized the Kennedys for downplaying the nation’s “internal threat” responsible for the shot which had narrowly missed him. 

Returning to Walker’s wounds, Walker in this video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mLIjxSzRTFE, points to three positions on the outer side of his right forearm and says he bled in those three places: 

“Back there forty steps behind me … a bullet crashed through the window and just missed me [bullet hole in wall overhead]. And it < > much grit and dirt in my hair, and my arm was laying on the desk, and was bleeding in three places [showing with fingers of left hand three places on the outside of his right forearm], which turned out to be fragments from the shell casings.” 

From the position of the bullet hole in the wall over the desk and the way Walker would have been sitting as the bullet passed overhead, if he was in the room when the shot was fired, it looks questionable that metal shards from shell casings would strike Walker’s outer right forearm at all, let alone only there all three times, whereas the outer side of the right forearm would be the expected location for two or three slight skin cuts by pressing down on broken glass or shards. 

Based on the extremely minor nature of Walker’s injuries and their distribution and location I believe those injuries were self-inflicted; that Walker was not in the room at the time the shot was fired; and that Oswald did not try to kill Walker that evening, no matter what he may have told Marina.

What did Lee tell Marina?

The following is a first draft of some speculation in trying to make sense of this. We know there is smoke around Oswald as some kind of informant or operative even if specifics are elusive. Oswald in Dallas in early 1963, if he is a spy or infiltrator, targets the extreme right wing, Walker’s circle. Oswald’s “Walker Note” for Marina may have been part of an intention for Oswald to be arrested for that shooting, then to become a cause celebre and with a good lawyer get off with a light sentence, attract sympathy among Americans who did not like Walker ideologically, and Oswald would have credentials of some kind. The idea is that Oswald anticipated and intended for himself to be arrested but that plan did not come to fruition, either due to the accident that no one turned him in (Marina could easily have confided in someone who would have turned Lee in, but Marina did not do so), or he was turned in and it was quietly quashed without an arrest. The hypothesis is that the “Walker Note”—along with perhaps intentional hints and leaks to others? (BYPs?)—were designed to result in an arrest after the shot into the Walker house. In this scenario it would be Lee telling Marina that he tried to kill Walker but missed, and Marina believing Lee, even though that was not exactly what had happened.

The hypothesis is that the Walker Note is like the later Soviet embassy note which Oswald left out in the open in Ruth Paine’s living room for a whole day knowing that Ruth Paine would look at it and report it. Similarly with the Walker Note with Marina. The idea is that both of those paper documents handwritten by Oswald were meant to be found, meant to be reported to authorities. 

Edited by Greg Doudna
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I knew her Lawrence, twenty years ago, and she continues to be smeared beyond any reason. Why have so many here been so obsessed with seeing Ruth Paine in the worst imaginable light. 

Maybe its because I think its just wrong. I care about the truth of the JFK assassination, but going on a witchhunt after an innocent person is fundamentally mistaken, in addition to the damage on a personal level to a wrongly accused person.

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The backstory on the evidence linking Oswald to the Walker shooting.  Why there is reasonable  doubt.

The provenance and timing of discovery of the so-called Walker note is at best curious and convenient.  

·        The Warren Commission concluded that Oswald’s attempt on Walker "considered it of probative value" because it supposedly was evidence of Oswald’s capability of being able to carefully plan the  killing of another human being and that he was willing to consummate such a purpose if he thought there were sufficient reason to do so [1]

·         According to Marina, when Lee Oswald left the apartment, he did not have a rifle. Marina grew anxious when he did not return from typing class at the usual time period she went into the room in which he kept his personal things and discovered a note on a small end table.

·         Marina said the note contained a list of instructions and courses of action for her to take if he did not return. It informed her that the rent and the gas were paid and told her where to find the post office box and to send any news clippings to the Soviet consulate where she might get help. The last paragraph also provided directions to the city prison in case he was alive and under arrest.

·         Marina went further on to say that when Oswald returned home that evening, she confronted him with the note. He supposedly admitted that he had shot at Walker. She said Lee told her that he had smuggled the rifle out of the apartment three days earlier and had hidden it in some bushes on the grounds near Walker's home. After the shooting, she said  he told her that he buried the rifle.

·         Marina said she kept the note as a kind of insurance policy against any further crazy behavior warning her husband that if he did anything like this again she would go to the police. Marina then supposedly slipped the  note between the dust covers of a Russian language book of housekeeping tips for new wives that Lee had given her as a birthday gift. [2]

First Police Investigation of Paine House-November 22nd

·         At about 3:00 o'clock in the afternoon of November 22nd, Dallas Police Department homicide Robbie Brewer Bureau showed up at the home of Ruth Paine. The detectives were joined by two Irving policemen who spent the next two to three hours searching the Paine residence.

·         According to detective Richard Stovall (who supervised the search), six officers went through the entire house including Marina's bedroom, Ruth Paine's bedroom, the den, the kitchen and the closets. 

The Second Police Investigation- November 23rd

·         The next day ,they returned and spent another four hours searching the Paine’s garage.  Stovall recalled that the searchers took one Russian book from Marina's bedroom. John P Adamak ,one of the detectives on the search team, told their Warren Commission staff lawyer that they found a lot of Russian language books in the garage.

·     Despite the exhaustive two day search, the incriminating Walker note was not reported. (It was later reported in the October 1964 memo listing inventory of Oswald's possessions recovered from Paine residence and rooming house) [3] 

Interrogation of Marina Oswald-November 28th

·         Marina was under the protective custody of the Secret Service at the Six Flags motel in Fort Worth. On November 28th,  the FBI team began interrogating Marina to clear up some of the loose ends in the case. William C Sullivan, chief of the bureau's domestic intelligence division and the official in charge of handling Oswald's widow, told the team to “bear down on her”.[4]

·         FBI headquarters dispatched an Immigration and Naturalization service agent to Fort Worth to join the FBI team. The INS agent's assignment was to impress upon Marina that now that her husband was dead, she was an alien without a permanent visa and could face deportation if she did not cooperate with the government. Marina had orally forcefully made it clear to the Dallas police through Ruth Paine that she wanted to remain in the United States with her two children and did not want to be sent back to the Soviet Union. [5]

Discovery of the Note

·         On November 30th, Ruth Paine sent to Marina via the Irving County police the Russian housekeeping book among other belongings.

· On December 2nd, just three days before the FBI report on the assassination was sent to Katzenbach, the Secret Service agents suddenly discover the unsigned and undated note written in very poor English Russian. According to Secret Service Russian language expert Leon Gopadze, Marina  translated the note and it was then that she confirmed that her husband had written it and that he confessed to her that he was the one who had made the attempt on oswald's life.[6]

  • On December 3rd, the FBI office sent the Walker note to Bureau headquarters where it was examined by Sebastian Latona, the FBI's fingerprint expert. Latona's report said he had lifted 7 latent fingerprints from the letter but none was identical with the fingerprints of Lee Harvey Oswald or Marina Oswald. (Note that only one of three HSCA experts were willing to say the note was in Oswald's handwriting) [7]

· On December 6th, Katzenback back told Pierre Salinger to go ahead with a press a White House press release confirming that Oswald had been the sniper who took a shot at the general. Later that day, FBI section chief James L Hanley informed the head of the FBI Dallas office Gordon Shanklin that he could expect a memorandum to be delivered via American Airlines flight 307. The memo was also sent to DPD Captain Edward Backner with instructions that the FBI report would conclude that Oswald was a sniper in the Walker case and that the Bureau expected the Dallas Police Department to fully support the official version. [It was imperative that FBI headquarters move quickly to tie up all loose ends because the Dallas police were not privy to the conclusions in the FBI report and there were still uncertainty about whether Carr and the Texas court of inquiry could be trusted to stay with the official line].[8]

Post-Note Investigation 

·         In February 1964, chief Curry told a Reporter from the Dallas times Herald that the police were ready to name Oswald as the assailant in the Walker case based not on the ballistic evidence but solely on Marina Oswald's testimony.

·  Several months later, WC General Counsel Rankin wrote Hoover a 6-page letter complaining that Marina's testimony on the Walker shooting to the FBI and Secret Service was giving the Commission lawyers "fits" because it was riddled with contradictions. He requested that the Bureau undertake an extensive investigation concerning the Walker allegations. Rankin’s letters spelled out in detail six areas that needed clarification and asked to direct that Marina questioned again.

  • Shanklin who had believed that the Walker case was finally closed, now had to assign two agents to interview Marina all over again because " her statements “just don't jibe”. [9]

· Hoover sent a letter to Rankin on June 10th indicating that the agents had carried out an extensive investigation and that their inquiries in this matter where concluded. However Hoover did not share with Rankin  a memo written by Ivan D. Lee (one of the FBI agents assigned to do the follow-up investigation) that the FBI had hit a brick wall  in the Walker shooting. His note concluded " Our investigation did not establish whether Oswald did or did not make an attempt on general Walker's life". [10]

  • On June 10th, the FBI concluded its supplement its investigation. The FBI agents Lee and Robert Barrett  spent the week interviewing witnesses already identified by the Dallas police. One promising witness was a 15 year old boy named Walter Kirk Coleman who was one of Walker's neighbors. On the evening of April 10th, he had been working with his godfather who was helping him build shelves in his room when he heard a shot sometime between 9:00 and 10:00 PM. He merely ran from his first floor bedroom and looked over a stockade fence into the parking lot of the Mormon church that adjoined general Walker's residence at 4011 turtle Creek Blvd. He spotted two men getting into their cars and leaving the church parking lot.
  • When Liam Barrett question Coleman, he described the cars and the two fleeing individuals. The church parking lot parking lights were on so Coleman had a good look at the men and their vehicles. One of the cars was a white or beige 1954 and the other was a black over white 2 door Chevrolet.
  • Coleman described the men who left in the Ford as a white male about 15 to 20 years of age about 5 foot 10 in height and weight about 130 pounds. He told the FBI this man had dark bushy hair, a thin face with a large nose and was real skinny.
  • When Liam Barrett showed him numerous photographs including some of Oswald, Coleman told him that neither the men looked like Oswald and that he had never seen anyone in or around the Walker residence or the church before or after April 10th 1963 who resembled Lee Harvey Oswald.
  • Coleman's account was supported by Robert A Surry, a Dallas businessman and a Walker supporter. Surry told Lee and Barrett that on April 8th (two days before the Walker incident), he had arrived at Walker's house and noticed two well-dressed men in suits and ties looking into Walker's windows. The men did not see him so he continued to observe them from a position in one of the neighboring yards. After about 30 minutes to men left in a Ford that had no rear license plate. Surry said that he had never seen the intruders before and that neither looked like Oswald.
  • The FBI agents noted in their report that the two suspects had not yet been identified but  were impressed enough with Coleman's description of the two men and the cars to ask whether FBI Washington wanted them to pursue the investigation any further period, noting "it appears only logical" that the two men had either been involved in the Walker shooting or had been witnesses to the shooting and were reluctant to come forward and report what they saw. They ended their report with the cautionary note that any further investigation would require  interviewing general Walker and they thought he would "immediately alert the press or call a press conference and publicize the inquiry".
  • There is no indication that the FBI ever made Coleman's testimony available to the Warren Commission and Coleman was never called to testify before the Commission.

Note the folllowing:

  •  Belmont told Katzenbach that the DPD had not considered LHO a suspect.[12] 
  • the 38 page report by robert gemberling stated that not a single witness questioned could provide a scintilla of evidence connecting oswald to the walker shooting.[13] 
  •  DPD ran no ballistics on bullet because of mutilation; 
  • One of the DPD officers responding to the shooting thought it was fired from 30-.06 high-powered rifle.  
  • Frazier said the Walker slug was copper-jacked bullet[14];  
  • Walker attys Clyde Watts and A.V. Grant raised possibility that others had been involved in the shooting. Watts requested permission to interview Marina but was denied[15] 
  • Walker had Watts investigate William MacEwan Duff, a disgruntled former employee. Watts told FBI that his investigation could not rule out that Duff knew Oswald and might have conspired with LHO to kill Walker.[16] 
  • Walker said on radio that Oswald was working with communist cell and that Oswald had been seen with William MacEwan Duff.[17] 
  • Belmont recommended that FBI Dallas interview Walker "to pin him down". Hoover reluctantly agreed, writing "I hope we are right and this is not another gap". [18] 
  • Henry Heilberger told WC staff attorney Eisenberg that lead alloy in Walker fragment did not match the two limo fragments.[19]
  • Walker- (1) was never asked if bullet in evidence resemble one recovered from house (2) told Richard Russell in 1970 that the bullet hole was still in house and could be measured for caliber and (3) after watching televised 1979 HSCA hearing where CE573 was put into evidence, walker wrote Robert Blakely and Attorney General AG Bell that CE 573 did not resemble the bullet recovered from his home and asked the bullet be "withdraw the substituted bullet". [20]


The Warren report failed to disclose the FBI Ballistics experts had no more success than the Dallas police in their attempts to forensically connect Oswald with the Walker shooting. Had Oswald lived to face a trial with competent defense, the government would have been hard pressed to establish beyond a reasonable doubt that the physical evidence conclusively linked Oswald to the Walker shooting. The evidence would have been solely based on Marina's testimony which was very problematic. Without having to worry about cross-examination of its forensic evidence  and expert witnesses, the WC was free to conclude that Oswald attempted to kill Walker and this demonstrated "his disposition to take human life."

The uncertain provenance and timely appearance of Oswald's alleged Walker note to Marina raises the possibility of a a possible forgery and is just another example of how the governments manufactured the historical record of the assassination of the Americas 35th president. 

[1] WCR 22-23, 187, 406

[2] WCR 184-186

[3] volume 7 188 – 199(stovel), 209 - 210 (adamcik); 105 - 82555 - NR (section 214). inventory item D 74 is described as “Russian book on cooking and other useful information in which was the Walker note written in Russian by Oswald" .The FBI inventory of the Oswald possessions removed from both residences can be found at oswald file. 105 - 82555 - NR section 214 (10/06/1964 ). 

[4] Shanklin to file (11/20/ 1963) , 89 - 43 - 1297; HEITMAN to file (11 /30/ 1963) file number 89 - 43 - 1421.

[5] Forrest V. Sorrels  to Jesse Curry (12/26/63); ser no. 2-34-34,000. DPD Files V12.

[6] WCR 183-14; Leon I. Geopadze 12/3/63 serial #2-34.303. Secret Service document 322

[7] HSCA, volume 3 225- 249.

[8] 89-43 -2613a (12/06/1963 (Shanklin to fil)e

[9] Shanklin to file 2/191964 100 - 10461 - 3537 ; Ranking to Hoover (5/20/1964) Oswald file 105 - 82555 - 3 ? 92; Shangqing to file 6/10/19 64 100 - 104 61 - 6620.

[10] Hoover to rankin (06/16/1964) oswald file 105 - 82555 - 4107.

[11] reserved

[12] 62-109060-1623  (12/6/63)

[13] 62-109060-NR (4/1/64); 108-82555, sect. 55, 169-170 (Gemberling Report-oswald file 12/23/63); 105-82555-4354, 92, 130,  (Gemberling Report 7/2/64); 108-82555-4107; 62-109060-1132    

[14] Vol. 3, Frazier 414

[15] 105-82555-1407; 

[16] 108-82555(section 65 of serial 1367); 105-82555-1414

[17] 105-82555-1459 belmont memo

[18] 105-82555-2070 (1/8/64); 105-82555-1459; 105-82555-1592(1/24/64); 105-82555-2070 (2/15/64); 105-82555-2070 (dallas to hoover 2/18/64)

[19] 62-109060-2845 (3/27/64); 62-109060-1719 (heilberger report)

[20] For walker correspondence, see 62-117290-1473


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But what does it have to do with Ruth Paine?

Lawrence Schnapf-- the information you present is very strong, such that if Oswald had only a medium-competence level or better legal team he would easily be acquitted, i.e. it would take actual incompetence not to have reasonable doubt and acquittal.

But . . . but: what does any of this have to do with Ruth Paine?

Well, you seem to follow a line of reasoning as follows: argument for exoneration of LHO from evidence --> the FBI was intent on pinning it on him --> therefore one of the primary items of material evidence, the Walker Note, may have been fabricated at behest of the FBI, requiring an extremely high level of sophistication of forgery skill --> [[NON SEQUITUR ALERT!!!!] --> therefore the FBI instead of having a professional in-house experienced forger do that highly skilled forgery (drumroll...) farms out the job to citizen RUTH PAINE in Irving to do that highly skilled forgery!

Ruth Paine who has no known prior history, training, anything, in arts of forgery. Never went to forgery school. Never did any forgery in the past. Never showed any interest in forgery. Never accused of forgery. No evidence she physically handled the Walker Note at any time in her life. Never forged anything after that time in her life. No evidence that she possessed any forgery skill, let alone the extraordinary top-tier skill level necessary to fool highly experienced questioned-document examiners if the Walker Note were forged.

So even if I were hundred percent with you on everything else (I am on much but not all, but that is irrelevant to the point here) ... how does Ruth Paine get worked in as a necessary component to anything? 

If the FBI wanted to forge a Walker Note (I doubt it) then it makes no sense on earth that the FBI would not do it themselves with in-house expertise, rather than ask Ruth Paine to not only do it, but be willing to commit perjury about it (a crime), trust her never to talk later about her one-time world-class forgery accomplishment, etc. and etc. That's all made up. Its just a leap into outer space. It does not logically follow from facts cited.

Other comments. I do not believe Oswald buried the rifle, took the bus, did it on his own, etc. However I think it is very possible he told Marina those things. As to whether he fired a shot into an empty room, with some assistance and a car involved, uncertain, he might have, I don't know how that could be confirmed or disconfirmed either way. But I think he was involved in that shot and wanted it to look that way and may have told Marina most of what Marina said he told her. 

I cannot agree with the common idea that Marina was coached to tell complex stories out of whole cloth, the opposite of what Marina knew to be the truth. I know a lot of people think that but that makes no sense. What makes sense is they want her to talk, to tell them the truth, and she has a loose relationship with truth (diplomatically put), some fibs and contradictions. Here is the problem with the notion that Marina first says "I've never seen that [Walker Note], Lee never wrote that". Then, "We want you to say you have seen it, that he did write it, that you hid it in your book, we want you to tell a whole invented story about how its yours." "You do? What if I get my lines wrong?" "We will train you" etc. There is no evidence or plausibility that happened. And if it did happen, the Secret Service, FBI, whoever, would still want her to tell them "what really happened" so you have to propose two sets of dual interview records, one the "real truth" (except you still don't know if Marina is truthful even then), and then another set of documents around a heavily choreographed Marina doing acting with lines learned and storytelling learned given to her. Two sets of debriefings of Marina and Marina able to keep her assigned stories straight between the two, and that never come to light, is just not sensible.

Rather than the FBI deciding "we're going to frame Oswald for this unsolved crime over here", so: make Marina incriminate Lee; fabricate photos of the Walker house backdated to April 1963 and make them look like Lee's and make Marina say they are Lee's; make Ruth Paine put Walker house photos in her house and falsely say they were there all along; have an extremely technically-good forgery made of a Walker Note in what looks like Oswald's handwriting (not done by an experienced professional but by inexperienced Ruth Paine), etc. etc. is too complex. It is simpler that Oswald was an infiltrator of the Walker people, got mixed up with them, and the Walker photo album that Marina said Lee had prior to later destroying it, as well as other things ... are part of an intention of Lee that he be arrested and credited with attempting to kill Walker, though that arrest and court trial never happened. 

The Bradford Angers story does not look fabricated out of whole cloth. It appears to be a version of the truth of Oswald and the Walker house shooting. An accomplice, a car, a shot, an inside job, Oswald ... 

A nitpick (among so much else that is solid and good): I believe this sentence is not an accurate representation in the way you word it: "Note that only one of three HSCA experts were willing to say the note was in Oswald's handwriting". That makes it sound like two out of the three had reservations, or some uncertainty, or doubts that it was Oswald's. In fact those two declined to work on all of the documents in Cyrillic, not simply the Walker Note, not because of any opinion concerning authenticity but because of limitation of scope. The other letters in Cyrillic of Oswald to Marina in the Soviet Union without question were Oswald's but "only one of three HSCA experts were willing to say" those were in Oswald's handwriting too, to paraphrase you. Those two declining to assess any of the Cyrillic writings had nothing to do with mental reservations over whether this or that one was written by Oswald. The only relevant expert opinion among those three is the one who did assess all of the Oswald Cyrillic materials and that one gave an unequivocal identification of the Walker Note as written in the same handwriting as the Oswald Soviet notes to Marina. Your wording does not accurately represent the true sense here, as if the two who stood down from Cyrillic materials were casting doubt on one of those Cyrillic materials, when there is no testimony or basis for that. 

I also think Walker knew exactly that he had faked his injuries and put some effort into attempting to entrap and incriminate Duff, not because he thought Duff might have taken the shot, but in order to make it look like Duff did. If Duff had taken the bait of the money and been entrapped, Duff would be incriminated for trying to kill Walker at a later time, which would still leave the earlier shot unsolved but would look like Duff probably did the earlier shot too no matter how much he might deny it. But Duff refused to be entrapped and told the FBI of the attempted entrapment.   

On your last question, since Ruth Paine has nothing to do with anything you have concerning the Walker shooting that I can see, I do not quite understand the question, but yes, I believe Ruth Paine that she gave a book to Marina. That is well supported by the Irving Police and the Secret Service that she did so. I believe Ruth Paine when she said she did not write the Walker Note. That is well supported on other grounds too.

To reverse your question: do you really disbelieve her? or do you simply want to disbelieve her? 

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Is there or is there not a Minox camera in this DPD evidence photo?


April 10, 2022


The timing and content of the "we both know who was responsible" phone call of Ruth and Michael Paine


April 16, 2022


Ruth Paine in Nicaragua: counterpoint to "The Assassination & Mrs. Paine"


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An unjust accusation: Ruth Paine and the TSBD job of Oswald


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The Secret Service never told Marina that Ruth Paine was CIA--never happened 


April 29, 2022


How many more threads are needed?

It appears to me that this particular member of the forum has an agenda. It seems he's defending Ruth Paine out of a sense of friendship.


And as to why, consider it sticking up for a friend. If you saw a friend smeared and wrongly accused, I think you would do the same.



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