Well I promised to try and get a few thoughts in before Christmas and that pretty much means now. What I’m going to shoot for here are my overall impressions from the conference – the videos of the individual speaker presentations should be available from JFK Lancer by the end of January so I’ll not try to repeat the presentations themselves here.
The first thing that struck me is that the more documents we see, the more comparisons are done and the more primary evidence is seriously investigated, the weaker the legal case against Lee Oswald becomes. From fingerprint evidence to the chain of possession on the hulls, the prosecution’s evidentiary case is literally shattered by conflicting statements and records. Worse than shattered, it’s possible to point out dozens of instances of actual conflicting official statements and reports. Attorney Bill Simpich and Crime Scene specialist Sherry Feister both commented on the situation in our final wrap up panel on Sunday morning and their opinions were the same – this sort of mess is not indicative of the sort of simple human error encountered in criminal cases.
The evidentiary case in Dallas was literally so bad that it’s impossible to believe that individuals were not adjusting their remarks as time progressed, Pat Speer did an exceptionally good job of highlighting that in the area of fingerprints. And it’s here that I’m beginning to see a real difference between Dallas and Washington. What we see in Dallas seems to be a case where individuals had to adjust themselves against the official story which evolved in Washington. Their choices were pretty simple, they could be stubborn, push back and risk their careers and reputations or just adjust, accepting that maybe they really had been wrong themselves. In the case of the DPD crime scene officers they are simply left looking incompetent.
The Doctors at Parkland were in a similar bind and we now know how much effort was spent bringing them in line after the fact, both subtly and not so subtly. Being professionals they too had to consider whether they might have simply gotten it wrong themselves, made inaccurate observations and conclusions on the wounds they had seen. After all, they would have had to object to an official autopsy report and they themselves had only seen the body in passing. I would say after hearing more Doctors first hand at this conference, they are finally coming to realize that their trust in the official autopsy was misplaced.
The thing is that when you get to Bethesda and the events in Washington, there is something else going on – with the evidence retrieved from Dallas and with the official autopsy materials, from the Doctors notes all the way through the process. It’s not that anything is necessarily “faked”, or not initially at least. It’s all just “managed” as time goes on. Not managed in real time, but essentially edited as the official record is developed. It becomes not a matter of what you see but what you don’t see in the official record. Dr. Chesser’s presentation, based on his recent review of primary X-ray materials is an example of that. Perhaps the best way to say it is that the official materials are incomplete but even with what is now available suggestive of a frontal shot to the President’s forehead.
Of course there were many more presentations and the opportunity to meet both some first generation researchers who have been missing in action but are back with us now as well as well as a chance to talk with some of the first day witnesses. My personal take away from that is that rather than going away after the 50th anniversary, the level of dissatisfaction with the official story of the assassination continues to grow. This conference was one of our largest in years, with more new attendees than I’ve seen in a good while.
I should also mention that the conference reinforced one of my own ongoing areas of interest – the official story of the Baker/Truly/Oswald encounter. I’m making no judgements there yet but my gut tells me it is flawed and that even if it happened there was a far longer lag time than some 90 seconds. We did get a chance to ask Buell Frazier about it and he has no recollection of seeing a uniformed police officer (in a motorcycle helmet no less) run by him on the stairs. I understand the situation was chaotic (although not so much for folks on the stairs right at first) but I’m having trouble accepting that you don’t see a police officer almost immediately rushing up the stairs and past you – unless it just didn’t happen all that quickly.
Enough for now, Santa’s on his way and need to spend time being really good today to try and save myself…

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About Larry Hancock

Larry Hancock is a leading historian-researcher in the JFK assassination. Co-author with Connie Kritzberg of November Patriots and author of the 2003 research analysis publication titled also Someone Would Have Talked. In addition, Hancock has published several document collections addressing the 112th Army Intelligence Group, John Martino, and Richard Case Nagell. In 2000, Hancock received the prestigious Mary Ferrell New Frontier Award for the contribution of new evidence in the Kennedy assassination case. In 2001, he was also awarded the Mary Ferrell Legacy Award for his contributions of documents released under the JFK Act.

4 responses »

  1. Thank You Larry. I truly appreciate your thoughts-stirring, detailed + dedicated research + your email updates (have saved’em all!). Wishing you + your Loved Ones a very Happy + Safe Holidays season + a Grrrr8 New Year!

    Best Regards in Research, Don

    • Hi Don, thanks for the kind words and a very Merry Christmas to you as well. Here’s to 2016, and to surviving the repeated ice storms which seem to be coming at us here this summer. Some of that unseasonable east coast heat would be much appreciated but we are facing just the opposite this winter.

  2. Jim Stubbs says:

    Hi Larry. I was just watching The Lost JFK Assassination Tapes and heard something from one of the news announcers on the tape, sandwiched within a running commentary about what had just happened. He said that there was information that a man and a woman were suspected of doing the shooting from a ledge of a building near the overpass. Love to know where that came from. Have you ever heard of it?

    • Hi Jim, first off let me say that we have been without power here for a full week due to severe ice storms…thousands of us in western Oklahoma. Just got it back this evening and am very thankful. As to your comment, yes I had heard that before – as you know there is no building close to the overpass and as far as I can tell from follow up interviews it was simply a mistake based on seeing folks at the lower windows of the TSBD, and of course there were
      several folks watching out of the windows. This one has been around a very long time, there was a similar report of suspects seen running near the overpass. As far as I know the only truly suspicious reports that remain are of the guy seen walking on the railroad tracks, going away from the plaza and carrying a rifle…as well as the very strange police radio broadcast of a report of unidentified parties with weapons at Love Field. That one has always intrigued me.

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