Saturday, November 27, 2010

Unexplained Mysteries Of The JFK Assassination

Actually, the killing of John F. Kennedy is one long, drawn out mystery. Because something happened here that was so far out of normalcy. Every single thing involved with it is problematic; even the simple things like Oswald buying a money order to purchase a mail order rifle is rife has problems. Conspiracy can be debated forever, but one thing is for certain–the reasons regarding the death of President Kennedy were covered up by a multitude of government agencies both Federal and State, the military, and the media. But why? Either they did it, or else somebody else did and they never could find out what happened and couldn’t tell the public they couldn’t figure it out.

Never the less, there was a swift rush to judgement to the point where Lyndon Johnson was being told by Joint Chiefs on the flight back to Washington that there was no conspiracy and the lone gunman was in custody. Amazing! How could they have known that so quick just hours after the event? Before any investigation had taken place? The Dallas police were still in the process of collecting evidence. This appears to be standard operating practice as this modus operandi would be repeated many times later, most notably the September 11 terror attacks where within hours of the disaster the government was relaying through the cable news networks that the crime was perpetrated by Osama bin Laden and his Al-Qaeda organization. Once again, no investigation had started, nor any evidence collected from the smoldering crime scene to arrive at this conclusion. But somehow, they came forward with this no matter how strange this looks. Then years later, when they had the official government investigation, they issue a report arriving at the same conclusion they established on the day of the disaster, within hours of it happening. Nothing changed! The exact same thing occurs on November 22, 1963. Perhaps this nonsense is an easier sell within moments of a national tragedy than days or weeks later. However, it’s a recurring pattern that occurs over and over again.

This is just one of many mysteries of the JFK assassination. Although there are enough to fill, and have filled, many volumes of books, what follows are a few more to consider.

Oswald’s Money Order
As with all things Oswald, this one episode is fraught with trouble too. In my article, Who Bought The Guns?, I chronicle the strange ends and outs of obtaining his guns. The problem is the money order he used for ordering the Mannlicher-Carcano from Kline’s Sporting Goods of Chicago is missing important routing codes. The routing codes are important as they trace the instrument through the banking system, insuring that each institution is only paying once.
Only the endorsement stamp of Klein’s is visible. Missing are the stamps from the First National Bank of Chicago, the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, and finally, the Federal Postal Money Order Center in Kansas City where all good MO’s go for their final resting place. However, the money order was not found there in the but in the National Archives in Virginia.

Mystery: Why are the routing stamps missing? Where are Oswald’s fingerprints on the money order and the order form? Why was the money order purchased at one post office and then mailed from a different one miles away? How did Oswald’s MO arrive in the Federal Records Center in Alexandria, VA? Or for that matter, who thought to look for it in the National Archives in the first place?

The Otepka Incident
Otto Otepka, a successful security analyst for the Department of State’s Office of Security, had his career destroyed by Lee Harvey Oswald. Or rather, his interest in the man. One day in June of 1960, while viewing a routine security file on defectors to the Soviet Union, Otepka noticed that one of defectors was listed as a tourist. The man’s name was Lee Oswald. Curious, Otepka contacted both the CIA and the FBI requesting more information on the man. After all, it was odd to see a defector listed as a tourist. He also was interested in uncovering if this man was really a defector or possibly, someone working for intelligence.

This all sent ripples through the upper echelons of the government bureaucracy.
What Otto Otepka did was look too closely at an individual that was under a national security blanket. This resulted in John Francis Reilly being placed in charge of the Office of Security in 1962. He would later state under oath that Robert Kennedy had placed him there. In essence, Reilly was to keep an eye on Otepka who by then had started his own file on Oswald. By 1962 he had his office phone tapped. In June of 1963 Otepka’s office safe was broken into and guess what file got stolen? Of course, the Oswald file. In the same month he was removed from his job. By September he had ten criminal charges brought against him which he was eventually successful in fighting off.

However, this all has a genesis in Otto Otepka’s first and only meeting with Robert Kennedy which occurred in December of 1960. One of Otepka’s duties was issuing security clearances. There were several Kennedy appointees that he had denied. Bobby showed up late and agitated. Otepka calmly gave his reasons for denying the appointees and Bobby exploded. Otepka held his ground and Bobby, seeing this man was not easily rolled, left in a huff. For many years Otepka thought his troubles with Bobby began with the security clearances. Doing his own research years later he came to believe it was his curiosity in Lee Oswald that destroyed his career in government service. More powerful figures didn’t want him snooping around there and apparently, Robert Kennedy was one of them. By sending out inquires to other agencies Otepka inadvertently brought attention to himself–by those in the loop and those not in the loop. And he believed the Attorney General was behind it all.

Mystery: So what did Robert Kennedy know about Lee Oswald and when did he know it? As early as 1960-61? Certainly by 1962 to have sent his people in to keep an eye on Otepka. What is the basis of the interest in Oswald at this early date? And what brought this to Bobby’s attention? Who learned of Otepka’s Oswald file? Did Bobby not want Otepka researching Oswald? And to what end?

Multiple Oswalds
If you are a steady reader of this blog you will know I’ve done done a lot of writing on the Oswald as doppelganger theory. It’s an interregnal part of JFK assassination lore and possibility of Lee Oswald being impersonated runs deep. It is something that can be viewed as a fringe subject but a careful investigation of witness testimony and documents collected by the Warren Commission shows a wealth of loose ends and conflicts. There is a disparity in employment records, tax forms, school records, and medical records. Even his autopsy face sheet has conflicts. There are not a handful of people that interacted with Oswald when he should have been somewhere else. There are dozens of these encounters ranging from New Orleans to Montreal. Some of these loose fragments are tied up with having another Oswald in play but that by no means solves all the problems encountered here with this subject. Namely, who is running this and what happens to the other Oswald after the assassination?

As John Armstrong (Harvey and Lee) discovered through his research that if Lee Oswald is being impersonated the it starts as early as the age of 13. If he was impersonated that young, then his mother Marguerite must be impersonated as well. Suddenly things are greatly entangled–two moms and two sons. And both sets have to resemble each other, a seemingly impossible task. Add to that two more sons from previous marriages and a frightening path lies ahead for anybody wanting to develop this as an intelligence operation. And to what end? To be involved with an assassination somewhere down the road? Indeed, high strangeness is all over this. Indeed, I can see why many would dismiss this doppelganger legend outright.

However, the trail of this enigma does not start out with what Gerald Ford called “armchair investigators” but in the highest echelons of the government itself. J. Edgar Hoover sent a memo in 1960 to the State Dept. with a warning that a Lee Oswald was possibly being impersonated. In 1961 a State Dept. official sent a memo to another, warning that the next time Lee Oswald is issued a passport, make sure he gets it personally; that way the right Oswald gets the right passport as it was suspected he was being impersonated. The possibly of a second Oswald had apparently made the rounds. In September of 1963 Lee Oswald makes his fabled trip to Mexico City. CIA station chief Winston Scott believed that Oswald being impersonated after examining the tapes from the bugged Soviet and Cuban diplomatic compounds. Hoover had his agents, seven of them, review the tapes and they determined the man speaking on the telephone calls is not Oswald. Shortly after the assassination, Hoover related this information to Lyndon Johnson. The new President in turn, used this for the final arm twisting of Earl Warren to get him to serve on the Commission. Those in the loop knew Oswald was being impersonated from 1960 to 1963. And they kept this information to themselves. He was apparently more than just a malcontent with a delusions of grandeur. Other people were keeping track of him and his business for years.

Lee Oswald remains the biggest enigma of the assassination of John F. Kennedy. A mystery in life he as well in death as uncovered by Dr. Earl Rose when he did the autopsy. His report of the autopsy leaves out numerous scars which the body of the real Oswald should have had. Such as the three inch long mastoid scar on the left side of the neck, the two wounds in his left arm from the accidental shooting in the Marines, and his small pox vaccination scar. Later, mortician Paul Groody who prepared Oswald’s body for burial was contacted twice by the Secret Service in regards to Oswald’s left arm and twice he told them he did not see any scars just as Dr. Rose had not documented them either.

Mystery: If Lee Oswald is being impersonated then what happens to the other “Lee” after the assassination? Or for that matter, his other mother? Are they put in safe houses or executed? Did the other Lee do the shooting leaving the real Oswald to be the patsy? Is this one of the fundamental secrets of the assassination and hence, the cover up?

Classified Files
One thing all investigations into the JFK assassination have in common is not what they uncover, rather, what they cover. They all add to the classified evidence pile. From the Warren Commission through the Clark Panel, the Rockefeller Commission, and lastly the House Select Committee on Assassinations, they all take information and classify it so the general public can never see it. The Warren Commission supporters come along and say, “See? They did all these investigations and they uncovered nothing new. The Warren Report stands.” I hear you Mr. Bugliosi.

Not really. New information is uncovered, it’s just buried through classification. Every so often a researcher will obtain documents through a FOIA request and it’s apparent why the files were classified to begin with. Researcher Harold Weisberg uncovered such gems as the 1/22/63 closed-door meeting where the Commissioners decided not to pursue any leads on Oswald being a government informant/agent (despite what they said to the contrary) and the CIA’s National Photographic Intelligence Center report, #1641-450, that examined the Zapruder film to determine the timing between shots one and two, which they determined to be a period of 1.6 seconds, which are impossible to do on a bolt action rifle.

To fire off shots that fast would require a second shooter and hence, a conspiracy. So one can understand why these records are kept secret. Any evidence that leads away from the Lone Gunman is to be covered up by any means. And classification does that.

After all of this time files are still classified from the beginning. Marguerite Oswald's tax returns from 1956 to 1962 are still sealed. They are marked, "referred...postponed in full." Of course many files on Lee Oswald are still withheld. Oddly, there is a John and Minnie Smith from the same exact time period, 1956-62 that are also classified and nobody knows who they are! Michael and Ruth Paine’s returns from 1956 to 1958 are classified as well, at time in their lives when they were listed as being employed as a farmer ad a farmer's wife. Lee’s cousin Marilyn Murret had all 23 pages of her testimony to the HSCA in 1977 classified. The list of classified information could fill many volumes–and goes deep in the belly of the Beast.

But don’t be surprised. The government has yet to release the autopsy photos of John Wilkes Booth, held in storage for 145 years.

Mystery: What is being covered up here? Could the tax returns being still being withheld from the public show just who Lee Oswald was working for during the 1956-62 period? Such as maybe the FBI, ONI, or the CIA? He’s in the Marines from 1956-59. So why hide his income from that? Also, many tax and employee documents on Lee Oswald are missing or withheld for various reasons. Just want kind of threat to National Security is there if Marguerite Oswald’s tax returns were released?

Collins Radio
The connections to the Collins Radio corporation has threads that run throughout the JFK assassination. A major defense contractor, journalist William E. Kelly wrote the following about them:

“Collins Radio supplied and maintained the equipment used by the Voice of America, all manned NASA space flights, the Strategic Air Command (SAC), as well as all equipment used for the CIA’s Guatemalan and Cuban operations. Most significantly, Collins Radio was responsible for installing and maintaining all radio equipment aboard Air Force One, Air Force Two and the Cabinet’s plane."

Kelly further adds, “Collins Radio not only installed and maintained the radios aboard most military and executive branch planes, they also operated the station known as ‘Liberty’ at their Cedar Rapids, Iowa headquarters, which served as a relay station for all radio communications between the White House, the Pentagon, Air Force One, Air Force Two, the Cabinet plane and Andrews AFB in Washington.”

In one of the more stranger incidents recorded in the history of the assassination, mechanic T. F. White noticed a man sitting in 1958 two-tone Plymouth sedan. To White, he was acting suspiciously as the man watched a flurry of police cars speeding to the murder scene of Dallas police officer J.D. Tippit. White exchanged glances with the man, who drove off. White wrote down the license tag number: PP4537. Later, as Lee Oswald’s image was broadcast on TV, White recognized him at the man in the Plymouth. Later, authorities would trace down the tag to a car belonging to Collins Radio employee Carl Mather of Garland, Texas. When contacted, Mather’s wife responded that her husband was at work the day of the assassination. The important point to consider here is that T. F. White says he saw a man resembling Oswald occupying and driving off in Mather’s car. It should be added that Mather was a close friend of J.D. Tippit and later that afternoon drove to the Tippit residence to offer condolences.

Even more peculiar, the FBI interviewed mechanic T. F. White later for additional details about his sighting but but do not interview Carl Mather. Even stranger, years later, The House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA) offered Mather immunity then never do question him under oath. It has since been uncovered through the JFK Records Act that investigators did talk to Carl Mather and discovered that he was responsible for installing the radio gear in Air Force Two, the Vice President’s aircraft. Nevertheless, this is basically a great lead that is never followed through on or adequately sussed out. Why? I think it is safe to assume that Mather possessed a high level security clearance for his work. I am not saying that Mather was a government informant but he does get the kind of coddling that an informant usually receives in an investigation.

Collins Radio’s involvement in Military-Industrial Complex and National Security State operations, runs deep. Everything from hiring Paper Clip Nazis to leasing a ship, the Rex, that was used to place assassins on the shores of Cuba to assassinate Fidel Castro. Lee Oswald, upon returning to America was introduced to a Collins Radio executive by Russian emigrant George de Mohrenschildt for possible employment. Though trivial, Oswald’s widow, Marina married a former Collins Radio employee, Kenneth Porter.

Mystery: What is the true Collins Radio link to the assassination, if any? Did T. F. White really see Lee Oswald in Carl Mather’s car? Did Mather know Oswald and loan him his car? The timeline is off–did White encounter an Oswald impostor? Why is Carl Mather treated so lightly to the point of being virtually ignored by investigators?

The Kennedy Family
One has the feeling at Kennedy family gatherings the death of John is the ghost in the room. Publicly, they support the Warren Commission’s conclusion. Privately, apparently not. David Talbot in Brothers, calls Robert Kennedy the first conspiracy theorist in the death of Presidential brother and told family confidants so. He did not believe in the Warren Report’s conclusion. In examining mysteries of the assassination I find nothing more mysterious than this large Irish-Catholic family’s silence on the issue. You would think somebody over time would break the hush. But so far, none have. It’s the job of the independent investigator to probe the depths of this thing. There is something deeply buried here that has insured their alliance to the myth. They won’t even speak up with John F. Kennedy is having his character trashed. Yes, Bobby okayed the wire taps on Martin Luther King. Yes, he was involved with the assassination plots on Fidel Castro. Bobby was very much involved with thwarting Garrison’s trial of Clay Shaw and had family henchman Walter Sheridan involved with all kinds of dirty business with that. One can only assume Bobby wanted to uncover the truth his way and on his timeline. Talbot in Brothers thinks it would be in another Kennedy administration in the oval office and hence Bobby’s fateful run.

In a way Ted Kennedy sort of strikes back by his involvement with the Freedom of Information Act legislation which resulted in a number of revealing files being released. And that is about all we’ll ever get out of the Kennedys. Perhaps that is enough since the FOIA could break the case open one day.

Mystery: What insures the Kennedy family silence to this day?

This is just a small sampling of mysteries in the Kennedy assassination. There simply is not enough space to list them all. I selected a few of my favorites. There are three main phases in the life of Lee Oswald: The Russian phase, the New Orleans phase, and the trip to Mexico City. Any one of these episodes have enough intrigue and weirdness to leave the mind wondering just what was this former Marine really up to? I think the intelligence angle is valid one and I return to it often in my research. Every single thing in the case gets more troublesome the deeper one delves in which makes it so difficult to decipher what is really going on here. No wonder, almost 50 years afterward, the search for the truth continues.

McKnight, Gerald, Breach of Trust; Proudy, R. Fletcher, The Secret Team; Armstrong, John, Harvey and Lee; Garrison, James, On the Trail of the Assassins; Mars, Jim, Crossfire; Bugliosi, Vince, Reclaiming History; Mellen, Joan, Farewell To Justice; Talbot, David, Brothers

Collins Radio Connections, by William E. Kelly

Monday, November 22, 2010

November 22 Once Again

I entered the 47th anniversary of John Kennedy’s assassination by not being able to sleep. Not because I was pondering the events that happened on that day that changed America forever, but instead a long night of waiting for sleep to come. So I got up, turned on the radio to the listen to the late night show, Coast To Coast AM as I knew Edward Haslam author of Dr. Mary’s Monkey was going to be on and would also feature a live interview with Judyth Vary Baker whose new book, Lee And Me, has been recently published and I’ve just started reading. She claims to have been Oswald’s lover for a few months in 1963 and so far, her story, while seemingly improbable is surprisingly well documented and filled with insights not documented before.

Judy’s voice are clear and familiar sounding. A bit feisty, but never rude, she recounted bits of her life as Lee Oswald’s lover and what it was like to see somebody she claims to have loved killed on live TV. She described Oswald as a patriot that loved his country and was knowingly set up to be the patsy and vilified afterward. To add to the intrigue she was calling from an undisclosed location in Europe and using something other than a phone (never defined). When asked by host George Knapp about the death threats she said she has gotten, she never gave a straight answer and laughed it off. I wish she had been more forthcoming on the threats and how they were delivered.

I think what stood out for me the most is when Judyth said that Lee knew what was going down and that he was going to be made the patsy. She says he stuck it out hoping to thwart the conspiracy. Well, that certainly is a new take on the assassination! I’ll have to study more on this and read more of her book before I can form a deeper opinion on that.

Also of note is that Edward Haslam spent a lot of time on the show last night discussing Judy and the assassination. Ed is a bit...out there. When a caller made some comments about the deadliness of the Mannlicher-Carcano, Haslam corrected him and said it was a Mauser that was fired and uncovered and the Mannlicher was not “discovered” until two days later. I was surprised he would say something that far off from the known facts. While there is an ongoing debate on numerous rifles discovered in the sixth floor it’s quite evident from police reports and numerous photographs and films that a Mannlicher-Carcano rifle was recovered within a few hours of the assassination. Frankly, I’m disappointed in Haslam for the inaccuracy here. I’m all for a divergence of thought on what happened but this is just plain wrong.

I’ll post a more detailed review of Me and Lee later. Judyth Vary Baker presents a unique take on the Kennedy assassination with more details then ever exposed before on who Lee Oswald was, who of course, remains the ultimate enigma of the case.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Lonesome Gunman Blues

As any SWAT Team or military sniper would say, good marksmanship requires constant practice. Oswald made many documented trips to the Sports Dome Rifle Range outside of Dallas in early November of 1963. Like all things Oswald it is bound in controversy as he is seen driving up when is supposed to have not known how to drive and should have been at Ruth Paine’s house at that time. Later, he’ll be seen arriving in the company of other men and doing annoying things such as shooting at other people’s targets. Whatever is going on here, he never practiced shooting at moving targets. Either in the Marines or in civilian life prior to the assassination. Any professional marksmen or even a deer hunter, will tell you that shooting at a moving target is the hardest thing to do. It requires fast tracking with little leeway for error.

I don’t claim to be a ballistics expert but I grew up around guns and my dad, grandfather, and uncles were gun collectors and hunters. I’ve personally shot various rifles, both bolt-action and semi-automatic with calibers ranging from 30.06, 7.62, 45.70 and .222. I have shot rifles with scopes on them and experienced a determining factor in firearms targeting–recoil. Or, how much the gun kicks once a round is fired. Recoil throws off the sighting of the target. This is extremely important as the target has to be acquired and in Oswald’s case, very quickly, within a fraction of a second. it’s hard enough with a static target let alone one that is moving. You have to sight by the naked eye first and then line up the scope in the general area. As we shall see, this is just one of many problems he faced in trying to accomplish his alleged mission.

Unbeknownst to us at the time, CIA Director McCone had the Zapruder film analyzed by the Agency’s National Photographic Intelligence Center (NPIC) in early 1964. The report was classified until legendary researcher Harold Weisberg obtained a copy of it through his 1982 FOIA suit. In the report (Labeled, 1641-450), the NPIC determines that at frame Z210 the first shot occurs. The second shot occurs at frame Z242. A time period of 1.6 seconds. Even if Ozzie was feeling lucky that day he would not have been able to shift the bolt on his junky Mannlicher-Carcano that fast. Experts take 2.4 seconds to cycle the weapon and that’s being generous. And as I just mentioned, recoil comes in to play, further adding to the time needed to reacquire the target, a target that has already moved out of position and has to be found through what amounts to be a peep-hole in a hotel room door. (Oddly, the scope is found later not to be properly sighted-in. It might have been thrown off since it had to be disassembled in order to get it into the building that morning.) At any rate, the only solution to this mystery is that there was another shooter. Something the Warren Commission would not ever consider. A second shooter is a conspiracy. And remember, we are told time and time again, there is no evidence for this! You can see why this report was buried for 18 years.

(As Gerald McKnight stated in Breach of Trust, relating this matter, it is unclear if the CIA ever mentioned anything from the NPIC report to the Warren Commission. I think it’s a good bet they never did. It would cause insurmountable problems for the Lone Gunman theory.)

A lot of factors affect a bullet’s flight. Cold produces drag on a bullet and will effect the trajectory. Wind and barometric pressure have their effects as well. Gravity produces a noticeable bullet drop even if the marksmen is lying flat on the ground and even more so if shooting from Oswald’s position 60 feet up. Combine all of these factors with a scope that is not properly sighted, and the task at hand is vexing. As Vietnam sniper Craig Roberts, who had an opportunity to look out the sixth floor window said that Oswald’s best angle was Houston street that lead directly to the shooter’s window. Roberts thinks Oswald could have shot up the car with a handgun, the limousine close and braking as it turned slowly on to Elm Street.

So could Oswald have made the shot? Sure, anything is possible. Never the less, it’s a curious thing–half of the evidence is there for a shooter being at the sixth floor window of the school book depository building and shooting. And the other half of the evidence refutes it. Yes, there was a sniper’s nest with stacked boxes, a discarded rifle, a paper bag, spent shells, and people seeing the gun barrel stuck out the window. No, the paraffin test proved negative for nitrates on Oswald’s cheek. (All who test fired the rifle tested positive I might add.) The bolt, trigger, scope, clip, and spent cartridges–none of these things had Oswald’s prints on them. Nobody sees him going down the flights of stairs to get to the first floor. When interrogated by authorities he is able to identify people that were on the first floor at the time of the shooting and even few moments afterwards. It’s like the table is set for dinner–but nobody is home.

I love how Vince Bugliosi in Reclaiming History relates that if Oswald is in a conspiracy why is he doing nothing related to a plot, such as having clandestine meetings with fellow conspirators and so on. As with all things Bugliosi, his arguments seem devastating till you take time to think about it. It’s a good point till one considers the opposite of the argument–what Oswald would have to do to be an assassin. Other than purchasing some guns (and that is problematic too. See my piece, Who Bought The Guns?) and a few trips to the firing range, what is he doing to be good at this? As any SWAT Team or military sniper would say, good marksmanship requires constant practice. Remember that he scored passing grades to qualify as a marksmen in the Marines. First time, pretty good; second time passable; third and last time, barely qualified. He did not belong to an elite sniper unit because his skills were not good enough. Before the assassination, he apparently never did any research, no development of skills, wind tests, shooting from a high elevation to test bullet drop, besides supplying himself with inferior equipment. He just showed up one day and sticks a gun out of the window and goes BANG, BANG, BANG! And the rest is history. Move along now.

So How Does A Loner Have A Wife And Two Kids?
One of the myths that came out of this was that if you are a lone gunman then you must be a loner. It is as if one has to associate with the other. Jim Garrison remarked, not only was Oswald not the lone gunman, he was never alone. Really, James Earl Ray fits the profile of a lone wolf on the outer fringes of society than Oswald ever could. The Warren Commission supporters have so pigeon-holed him as a loner that they have a hard time accepting that he associated with other people besides his wife and Ruth Paine. Just look at the many photos of the parties he attended in Russia. They all feature a content looking young man surrounded with lots of other people. He’s a regular social butterfly with pictures to prove it. When returning to the United States, he and his wife Marina were befriended by the White Russian community in Dallas. Lots of socializing went on there. He had friends in school and on most of the jobs he had, mingling with them outside of work.

I think another reason the Lone Nut crowd must have Oswald isolated from society is based on who he is known to have associated with. There are plenty of good witness accounts of Oswald in the company of everybody from CIA officer David Atlee Philips to the other lone gunman, Jack Ruby. Entertainers, from strippers to comedians, to customers of Ruby’s Carousel club recall seeing Oswald there in association with Ruby on many occasions. But it goes deeper as Oswald had associations with a lot of nefarious characters including
notorious spooks such as David Ferrie and Clay Shaw. Suspicious to say the least. Remember, Oswald is the loner–he’s not supposed to be this sociable. And hanging with this many government operatives? Oh man, so it ain’t so! This is a long and twisting road filled with mysteries and not for the faint of heart. Trying to make sense of it all can trouble the mind.

Actually, the only thing Lee Oswald is anti-social about his affiliation with other Marxist groups. He never does hook up with any of them. While being a Fair Play For Cuba pamphleteer, he was the only member of the New Orleans branch. And the pamphlets he was handing out either were addressed to the office of the staunch anti-communist Guy Banister (another Oswald contact which the LN crowd denies) or had phony addresses so that no one could contact him at all. The end result is that nobody could join him. It was all Cold War theater.

And the famous backyard photo of him with guns and Marxist newspapers show two divergent groups, one Stalinist and the other Trotskyite. Both are blood enemies of each other. You either belonged to one and not the other. He might as well be holding up a Bible and a Koran. What he was apparently doing was showing how disconnected he was from mainstream Communists in America at the time. In his things after the assassination was found a rough draft of a speech he never gave that was pro-capitalism. I sometimes wonder if the photograph was done for protection. To let everybody know what team he was playing for. That one image, FPCC literature, and the left behind speech contradict the legend of Oswald the commie.

Going It Alone
Could Lee Oswald have done it alone? Or for that matter, could anybody have assassinated John Kennedy alone? One would think the logistics for such an operation are too great for one man to handle if it was his desire to cut down a high profile figure such as a President. As has been pointed out in this piece, the CIA’s own photography analysis group determined the time between the first and second shot was too brief for Oswald to accomplish with a manually operated firearm. It begs for a second shooter. Military snipers operate in a team of one rifleman paired with a spotter. There should be in an operation such as this, besides a highly trained and experienced marksmen, intelligence gathering, operational knowledge of the intended target’s security detail, perhaps an inside man or two, and a backup plan among a myriad of other details. Can a lone individual complete all of these tasks? Not with Lee Oswald working 9 to 5 and visiting his wife and kids on the weekends. Maybe this is why we don’t see much in the way of targeted assassinations, at least in this country, since the 1960’s. Today, the Secret Service employs their own team of snipers on rooftops. An ironic turn of events.

McKnight, Gerald, Breach of Trust; Proudy, R. Fletcher, The Secret Team; Armstrong, John, Harvey and Lee; Garrison, James, On the Trail of the Assassins; The Warren Commission Report; Mars, Jim, Crossfire; Bugliosi, Vince, Reclaiming History for pictures of the President’s security detail.