by Jim Fetzer
With the advent of the 48th observance of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, it may be appropriate to share important findings regarding what we know now about his death that we have not known in the past. Most Americans are not in the position to take on the task that serious research requires. As a former Marine Corps officer and professor of philosophy who taught logic, critical thinking, and scientific reasoning for 35 years, it was my privilege to organize a research group consisting of the best qualified individuals to ever study the case in 1992. Since then, we have published three books reporting what we have discovered–Assassination Science (1998), Murder in Dealey Plaza(2000), and The Great Zapruder Film Hoax (2003)–I have chaired or co-chaired four national meetings on this subject and produced a documentary about it. From these books and other sources I will cite, many available on the net, you can verify what I am saying about our findings.
This research group–whose efforts continue to this day–has included three M.D.s, one of whom attended the mortally wounded president and then, two days later, his alleged assassin, a world authority on the human brain who was also an expert on wound ballistics, and another who is an expert on radiation oncology and has studied the autopsy X-rays in the National Archives; three Ph.D.s, including one with a specialization in the physics of light and is the leading expert on the Zapruder film, another who is also the M.D. who is an expert on the X-rays and is the leading expert on the medical evidence, and the third a philosopher of science who has published 29 books. Others include an expert on the JFK photos and films, who testified before the House Select Committee on Assassinations when it reinvestigated the case in 1977-78, and another expert on the production/post-production of films and the technology available to alter them in November 1963.
Among the enduring controversies of JFK research has been the identity of the man in the doorway, whom many believe to be Lee Oswald. Oliver Stone studied this question in preparing his film, “JFK”, and concluded that it was Billy Lovelady instead, a co-worker at the depository. Documents newly released by the ARRB, the interview notes taken by Will Fritz, the homicide detective who interrogated Oswald, however, show that Lee told him he had been “out with Bill Shelly [another of Oswald’s co-workers] in front” during the assassination. And, indeed, if you look more closely, you can see that the face of a man who is to the left/front of Lovelady (to the right/front facing him) has been defaced in order to conceal the presence of the alleged shooter. While the Altgens has widely been supposed to be untouched, this discovery demonstrates that that is not the case. Indeed, another figure two persons to Lovelady’s right (or to his left facing him) has also be obscured, whom I would surmise was probably Jack Ruby. This discovery demonstrates that proof that Oswald was framed is far beyond any reasonable doubt.
If we use the phrase “beyond a reasonable doubt” to characterize arguments based upon logic and evidence for which there is no reasonable alternative explanation, then what we have published in these books and recent articles demonstrates beyond reasonable doubt:
* that JFK was hit at least four times (once in the back from behind; once in the throat from in front; and twice in the head, once from behind and once from in front);
* that the wound to his throat was caused by a shot that penetrated the limousine windshield, which was subsequently destroyed and replaced by a substitute windshield;
* that the shot to the back was well below the collar, entered only about as far as the second knuckle on your little finger, and evinced no point of exit from the body;
* that no bullet transited the President’s neck without hitting any bony structures and exited at the level of his tie, a trajectory that in fact turns out to be anatomically impossible;
* that, as a consequence, no bullet passed through the President and hit the Governor, who was hit by at least one and perhaps as many as two or even three separate shots;
* that, including the shot that missed and injured James Tague, an absolute minimum of six shots had to have been fired during the assassination, where the total was more likely eight, nine, or even ten;
* that at least 59 witnesses reported that the limousine slowed dramatically or came to a complete halt after bullets began to be fired, which supports the conclusion that it slowed dramatically as it came to a complete halt;
* that the first shot to the head was fired from behind and entered in the vicinity of the external occipital protuberance at the back of the head;
* that the second shot to the head was fired from in front and entered in the vicinity of the right temple;
* that this second shot was fired with a frangible or “exploding” bullet that transmitted shockwaves through the brain;
* that the impact of this bullet combined with the weakening of the skull by the first shot to the head caused 1/3 to 1/2 of his brains to be blown out in Dealey Plaza at the time;
* that the massive blow-out to the back of the head was concealed by imposing a “patch” to the right lateral cranial X-ray (of the skull taken from the right side);
* that the brain had to be reconstituted since, once the defect to the skull had been “patched”, there was no place for that brain matter to have gone;
* that the brain shown in diagrams and photographs in the National Archives cannot be the brain of John Fitzgerald Kennedy;
* that two brain examinations were conducted, the first of which was with the President’s brain, the second with a substitute;
* that the autopsy report was prepared without the benefit of the autopsy photographs, which were removed by the Secret Service;
* that the photographs were subsequently altered and altered in various ways to conceal evidence of the cause of death;
* that the Zapruder film of the assassination was in the hands of the National Photographic Interpretation Center (NPIC) run by the CIA already the weekend of the assassination;
* that the extant “Zapruder film” has been massively edited to remove evidence of the actual cause of death, including the limousine having been brought to a halt in order to insure that the target would be killed.
A very accessible overview of these findings was presented at a national conference held at the University of North Dakota and published as Chapter 30, “Dealey Plaza Revisited: What Happened to JFK?” The studies by David W. Mantik, M.D., Ph.D., on the autopsy X-rays have been supplemented by his presentation, “The JFK Skull X-rays: Evidence for Forgery” at a national conference in Dallas in 2009. A visual tutorial introduction to the evidence that the Zapruder film has been recreated by John P. Costella, Ph.D., “The JFK Assassination Film Hoax” , explains how we know that the film is a fabrication, a finding that has been reinforced by the publication by Douglas Horne, senior analyst for military affairs for the Assassination Records Review Board, of Inside the ARRB (2009), whose key arguments about the film are summarized in an article for those who may not have time for all five volumes! Many related articles are also archived at http://assassinationscience.com and http://assassinationresearch.com .
Most of these findings were published in Murder in Dealey Plaza (2000), which benefited from the release of the first of some 60,000 documents and records that were meant to be withheld from the public by the Warren Commission for 75 years. Those whose work is brought together in this volume include the leading authority on the Secret Service (Vincent Palamara); the most knowledgeable student of the Presidential limousine (Douglas Weldon, J.D.); a leading expert on the medical evidence at Parkland and at Bethesda (Gary Aguilar, M.D.); the single most highly qualified person to ever study this case (David W. Mantik, M.D., Ph.D.); the Senior Analyst for Military Records for the ARRB (Douglas Horne); a legendary photo-analyst who advised the HSCA during its reinvestigation (Jack White); a world-famous philosopher who received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1950 (Bertrand Russell); a prize-winning director and playwright, who has produced a brilliant chronology (Ira David Wood III); and a philosopher of science who had then published more than 20 books and 100 articles (James H. Fetzer, Ph.D.).
Given the extraordinary character of these findings, it would be appropriate to provide reasons beyond the research itself that was published there to reassure the public that it should be taken seriously. Fortunately, this book was reviewed by George Costello for The Federal Lawyer (May 2001), pp. 52-56. This journal (formerly: The Federal Bar News and Journal) is a publication for attorneys who work for the federal government, who practice before federal agencies, or who appear before federal courts.
The reviewer was honored with an award of recognition for this review of Murder in Dealey Plaza , which suggests his professional colleagues appreciated the contribution he made, which, in part, he summarized as follows: What does all of this mean? Any one of the findings summarized above would be troubling by itself. Together, these findings form a critical mass of evidence indicating that President Kennedy’s autopsy was falsified, and help establish a compelling case that people within the federal government covered up evidence of frontal shots – and hence of multiple gunmen and conspiracy in the assassination of President Kennedy. Because it pulls this evidence together in one place, Murder in Dealey Plaza is one of the most important books to date on the Kennedy assassination.
The new evidence turns the tables. No longer can defenders of the lone assassin theory hide behind the autopsy evidence and claim that it trumps all the other evidence. The weight of this other evidence now trumps the autopsy report. Lone assassin theorists must address and explain the new evidence if they wish to regain credibility. It is time for people of integrity who were involved in the official investigations – especially the professionals – to take a good-faith look at the new evidence and confront the likelihood that their conclusions were based on falsified data . Murder in Dealey Plaza may not be the last word on the medical evidence, but it should be the starting point for a fresh look – not only at the medical evidence, but also at the assassination and its implications.
Those implications, I might add, are substantial in their impact upon alternative theories of the assassination. The mafia, for example, would not have been able to extend its reach into Bethesda Naval Hospital to alter X-rays under the control of medical officers of the US Navy, agents of the Secret Service, and the president’s personal physician. Neither pro nor anti-Castro Cuban could have substituted another brain for that of JFK. Even if the KGB had an ability to alter films comparable to that of the CIA and Hollywood, it could not have obtained the original of the Zapruder. These findings thus indicate that at least some of those involved had to have been among the nation’s highest officials, a result that receives further support from James Douglass, JFK and the Unspeakable (2008) and Phillip Nelson, LBJ: Mastermind of JFK’s Assassination (2010). It is long past time that the American people are entitled to know the truth about the death of our 35th president.
Jim Fetzer, a former Marine Corps officer who earned his Ph.D. in the history and the philosophy of science, is McKnight Professor Emeritus at the Duluth campus of the University of Minnesota. He co-edits assassinationresearch.com with John Costella.