on November 10, 2005
The A&E documentary series "The Men Who Killed Kennedy" is a very popular multi-part program, with many people boldly proclaiming that it "proves a conspiracy existed to kill President Kennedy in 1963". But, in my personal opinion, such conspiracy-"proving" declarations are misplaced when it comes to "TMWKK" or any of the other "Pro-CT" books, videos, or TV shows that have been showered upon the public since the day JFK was slain on a Dallas street on November 22nd, 1963.
Virtually everything within the 9-part mini-series TMWKK (the first six of which were released on home video in both VHS and DVD formats) that the program's producers tout as evidence of conspiracy has been explained in non-conspiratorial ways both before and since these episodes originally aired.
I'm a "Lone-Nutter" and am not the least bit bashful in admitting to that less-than-widely-popular assassination stance. I firmly believe that Lee Harvey Oswald, acting all by himself, took his $21 mail-order Mannlicher-Carcano rifle with him to work at the Texas School Book Depository on the morning of 11/22/63, and got extremely lucky when he found he had the whole sixth floor of that building to himself at precisely the time when JFK's motorcade slowly drove through Dealey Plaza at 12:30 PM on that Friday afternoon. Oswald then squeezed off three shots from his bolt-action military rifle in approximately 8.2 seconds, killing the President and severely wounding Texas Governor John Connally.
Every last bit of the physical evidence (and a whole bunch of circumstantial evidence as well) leads to the above "LN" scenario involving only Lee Oswald being the true scenario with respect to who killed John Kennedy.
There is so much evidence to show that Oswald was the lone killer of JFK that lawyer and author Vincent T. Bugliosi was prompted to make the following gutsy statement in 1986:
"Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone in the assassination of President Kennedy. The evidence is absolutely overwhelming that he carried out the tragic shooting all by himself. In fact, you could throw 80 percent of the evidence against him out the window and there would still be more than enough left to convince any reasonable person of his sole role in the crime." -- V. Bugliosi
I, for one, find it difficult to disagree with anything Mr. Bugliosi has to say with respect to the JFK assassination, mainly because he knows the case like the back of his hand and possesses a level of built-in "common sense" that seems to gush forth in every book he's ever written or in any case he ever brought to trial in a court of law. And VB's common sense and logical thinking (plus his vast knowledge of the evidence in the JFK case) are hard things for conspiracy theorists to combat.
Vincent even once "prosecuted" Lee Oswald for JFK's murder....albeit just in a "simulated" sense. It was in 1986 when Mr. Bugliosi secured a "Guilty" verdict out of a sworn-in jury from Dallas during the 21-hour televised docu-trial, "On Trial: Lee Harvey Oswald".
Below I've re-printed another unambiguous comment made a few years ago by Mr. Bugliosi, leaving no doubt as to who Vince thinks is solely responsible for JFK's death:
"There was no plot, no conspiracy. JFK wasn't murdered by anti-Castro Cubans, the mob, or rogue CIA agents. In almost 40 years, there has not been one scintilla of proof tying the assassination to anyone but Oswald. There have been theories, but no evidence. Oswald had the motive, the opportunity, and the skill to kill President Kennedy." -- V. Bugliosi
Part #4 of "The Men Who Killed Kennedy" (titled "The Patsy") is the portion of this cable-TV mini-series which boils my blood more than any other single installment. Mainly because it's just so downright silly! And the contemptible comments that came from the lips of former New Orleans D.A. Jim Garrison at the end of the program are just beyond belief (and beyond ludicrous as well). Garrison made the following statement as Part 4 of TMWKK drew to a close (a quote which was even accompanied by a few crocodile tears, no less, making these comments even more laughable):
"Lee Oswald was totally, unequivocally, completely innocent of the assassination .... and the fact that history, or in the re-writing of history, disinformation has made a villain out of this young man who wanted nothing more than to be a fine Marine .... is in some ways the greatest injustice of all." -- J. Garrison
Now, for a conspiracy believer to say that Lee Oswald might have been part of some kind of a conspiracy on 11/22 is one thing -- but to elevate this obvious murderer (just by using the J.D. Tippit killing as one example, without even factoring in the Kennedy slaying) to the stature of a fallen martyr, as Garrison did via that quote, just reeks with disingenuousness. Such hollow glorification and unjustifiable praise of Oswald is just sickening, in my view.
Keep in mind that the above quote came out of the mouth of the same Earling Carothers ("Jim") Garrison who stated in a 1967 "Playboy" Magazine interview that he was still (as of late 1967) of the opinion that Lee Oswald might very well have been standing on the Depository's front steps at the time Kennedy was being killed.......
"The Altgens photograph indicates the very real possibility that at the moment Oswald was supposed to have been crouching in the sixth-floor window of the Depository shooting Kennedy, he may actually have been standing outside the front door watching the Presidential motorcade." -- J. Garrison; Via October 1967 issue of "Playboy"
Now, that Garrison quote above was uttered three full years after Billy Lovelady testified to the Warren Commission that it was Lovelady, and not Oswald, who is seen in the Altgens photo. And still Garrison had the gall to cast doubts about the identity of the man in the doorway in that interview. Disgraceful.
A very rarely-seen video clip of Marguerite Oswald, LHO's mother, is also part of "The Patsy" installment of TMWKK. It shows Marguerite visiting her son's grave shortly after Lee's death at the hands of Jack Ruby, and is a clip that is both sad and hysterically-funny at the same time. Although, unlike Garrison's similar teary-eyed eulogy in this same program, at least Marguerite Oswald has the excuse of being the assassin's mother, and therefore a built-in flesh-and-blood bias is obviously seeping into her hilarious cemetery statement, which follows:
"Lee Harvey Oswald, my son, even after his death, has done more for his country than any other living human being." -- Marguerite Oswald
I'm afraid I cannot hold back the boisterous laughter each time I replay that news clip showing Mrs. Oswald making the above statement. I know she was mourning the loss of her 24-year-old son -- but, given the evidence that says Marguerite's boy was unquestionably guilty of killing multiple human beings in 1963, such an inaccurate and off-the-wall statement can only elicit laughter from anyone who has studied the Kennedy and Tippit murder cases.
One of the main reasons I find Part 4 ("The Patsy") so silly is because the "plotters" (per this program and according to just about every CTer I've ever encountered) evidently couldn't have cared less that their "Frame The Lone Patsy" plan was almost certain to fail right from the get-go due to the fact they (the proverbial and always-unknown and unidentified "plotters/assassins/evil-doers") had assigned MULTIPLE gunmen to fire bullets into John Kennedy's body on November 22. Which means that a whole bunch of stuff was going to need to be "fixed" and "planted" and re-arranged after the shooting in order for ALL of the evidence to shine back on JUST Lee Oswald and his one rifle in the Book Depository.
Therefore, via such an illogical "Multi-Gun" Patsy Plot, unless every frontal shot totally misses everybody and everything on Elm Street, there was bound to be lots of evidence of conspiracy to "cover up" immediately after the shooting stopped.
How could any band of conspirators, needing just Lee Oswald blamed for the assassination, possibly have been so brazen and reckless (and brainless) to have thought (on November 21st) that it was a good idea to frame their one fall guy by shooting the President with many different guns, from several different angles?
To put it bluntly -- There is simply no way in the world that anyone wanting to frame one man in the Depository would have placed multiple shooters (front and rear) in Dealey Plaza to kill the one target, when the job could just as easily have been carried out by placing a single shooter in the "Sniper's Nest" of the Book Depository (thereby eliminating the need for any after-the-fact "planting" and/or "body alterations", etc.). And, per my own beliefs, the job WAS, indeed, accomplished by just one person (Oswald) firing from that one window.
Another ridiculous portion of one of the most commonly-believed "Patsy" plots (as depicted in Oliver Stone's movie, 'JFK') is the part where these ace "plotters" evidently couldn't care less where their "Patsy" was located at the exact time of JFK's murder. Because, per Stone's film, Oswald is free to roam around on the lower floors of the Depository at his leisure. Which means, if he's seen by anybody at 12:30, Oswald has an airtight alibi that gets him off the hook for killing JFK, and thusly the entire pre-arranged "Frame Oswald As The Lone Patsy" plan goes up in a puff of smoke -- all because the plotters were too stupid to keep the Patsy where they needed him during the shooting.
Quite predictably, nobody involved with TMWKK programs believes that the "Single-Bullet Theory" is the correct version of the way Kennedy and Connally were wounded. But, again, when some common sense is applied to this aspect of the assassination, the "SBT" becomes the only possible and logical way the victims could have been injured. Believing otherwise opens up the floodgates for a wide array of nonsensical theories and sheer guesswork as to how it "really" happened. With such unsupported theories featuring multiple bullets that enter Kennedy's upper body and never exit at all.
Then the CTers have to explain away the disappearance of all the various bullets that pelted JFK and JBC. All of the missiles within any "conspiracy"-slanted version of the event just simply vanish off the planet without a trace. Plus there's the "sideways-entering" bullet that went into Connally's back, which obviously hit something (or someone) before striking the Governor.
In short -- ANY theory that CTers are forced to "substitute" for the SBT lacks any common sense whatsoever and certainly lacks any hard evidence of ever having occurred. And, moreover, any alternative conspiracy scenario to the Warren Commission's very-logical Single-Bullet Conclusion is just flat-out stupid-sounding when compared to the SBT version of events.
The Single-Bullet Theory is a theory declared to be true by both the WC and the HSCA, and is a scenario that involves absolutely ZERO "loose ends" whatsoever. It's a reasonable conclusion based on the evidence in the case. Evidence such as:
JFK and JBC being aligned in the car to "receive" the Single Bullet (CE399) from Oswald's gun being fired from the TSBD. .... The downward angle of the wounds in both victims is consistent with one bullet going through both men. .... The "oblong"-shaped back wound on JBC is consistent with the SBT. .... The Zapruder Film shows JFK and JBC reacting at very nearly an identical point in time to first being hit by gunfire. .... Not a single bullet was found inside JFK's back or neck. .... No whole bullets were found in the back-seat areas of the limo. .... And -- Bullet CE399, found near Connally's stretcher in Parkland Hospital, was definitively linked to Oswald's rifle.
So, once you can get past the silly notion that a conspirator "planted" Bullet CE399, or would have even WANTED to "plant" CE399 in the hospital (AT A TIME BEFORE SAID CONSPIRATOR COULD HAVE POSSIBLY KNOWN IF SUCH A PLANTED BULLET WOULD TURN OUT TO BE AN EXTRA, UNNEEDED BULLET IN THE CASE THAT MIGHT BLOW THE WHOLE PLOT WIDE OPEN), it then becomes fairly clear that the ONE and ONLY bullet found anywhere near the two victims, a bullet that came out of a gun that was found in a building overlooking the location of the assassination, is the one and only bullet that caused all of Governor Connally's wounds and JFK's non-fatal wounds.
What I'd really like to have happen is for some crackerjack CTer to provide a reasonable and believable conspiracy-based alternative to the SBT that uses logic and, above all, the known evidence in the case (or at least a percentage of it) and the two victims' known wound locations.
I've yet to hear such a reasonable-sounding alternative. Because in order to postulate such an anti-SBT "alternative", a conspiracy theorist has to actually purport that TWO bullets (from high-powered rifles no doubt--because WHY would some idiotic plotters use just a couple of BB guns to kill the President with?) -- TWO bullets -- just STOP inside JFK's soft flesh in his neck and back...without striking a single bone or solid object in his body. Why? And, more importantly, HOW could this have possibly occurred? Two "misfires"? Come now!
And that CTer has to also purport that THREE different gunmen did the damage to TWO different victims at the EXACT same time (per the Z-Film timeframe....and if not "exactly" the same time, then certainly within well under 1.5 seconds of one another, which eliminates the idea that just a mere two shooters could have accomplished this "alternate" version of the 2-victim wounding).
And that same CTer has to postulate that the THREE wounds on TWO men, occurring virtually at the same instant and being caused by THREE separate guns....ALL somehow, some way, by some act of the Almighty, just happened to align themselves into a triple-wound pattern that would FOOL all of the official Government investigative panels that would be poring over the case in the months and years after 11/22/63 into thinking (falsely, mind you!) that these THREE bullet wounds from THREE guns were all probably caused by just ONE single bullet found at Parkland Memorial Hospital.
Some great "alternative", huh? Anybody want to take it to Vegas and see if anyone bites?
Or --- The only other "alternative" is to say that a bullet did go all the way through JFK, but somehow (via some weird Kreskin-like magically-swerving bullet) missed John Connally seated directly in front of JFK's neck.
And then that CT alternative has to incorporate yet another "disappearing bullet" (among several in this case that were never seen by any non-plotters) that struck the limo someplace.....and the hole(s) in the limo were somehow stitched up by the ever-efficient "Conspiracy Cover-Up" branch of Martha Stewart & Associates, Inc. in a brief timespan between Dallas and the time Robert Frazier examined the limo for damage (and found NONE in the back-seat and jump-seat areas) on the night of November 22nd at the White House garage.
Each of the above "alternatives" totally ignores all of the known evidence in the case...plus they both totally ignore ordinary garden-variety common sense as well.
I think I'd rather stick with the known facts in evidence -- which is physical evidence that I have no reason at all to think was (or even could have been) ALL faked and/or manipulated by an impeccably-perfect "Let's Frame Oswald" team of cover-up agents.
And once a person who has looked at the physical evidence in the JFK case gets to the "This Stuff Couldn't Possibly Have ALL Been Faked" point (including the wealth of evidence showing Oswald to be guilty of killing Officer J.D. Tippit too), then only three obvious words remain to be uttered aloud -- OSWALD DID IT!
"Almost all of the current books on the subject deal with conspiracy theories. I believe there was no conspiracy, and I think I can convince the average reader in 25 pages that Oswald killed JFK." -- Vincent T. Bugliosi; April 22nd, 2004