USA Today – JFK Op-Ed (unedited)

Common Sense


Living through the media assault of the last few weeks leading up to this 50th year’s commemoration marking the violent end of JFK’s Presidency, I’m amazed there is any single adult left in the USA who would not think that Lee Harvey Oswald was the one and only assassin.

Although national polls from 1964 on clearly signal the public’s distrust of the official story, the mainstream media has never given up telling us how superstitious or illogical the common people are in this belief. As one of that multitude, the motivating factor for my disbelief has not been my idealistic view of Kennedy or what he might have done had he lived, but the very evidence of the shooting itself, which remains, then and now, highly dubious. Some basic examples--

1. The Single Bullet Theory (SBT) allows for one bullet fired from the sixth floor on a downward trajectory to enter Kennedy’s back and then take an upward path out his throat and into Governor Connally to his front, where it zigs and zags breaking two heavy bones and creating a total of seven wounds in two individuals. Now I’ve been in the infantry and I’ve seen enough combat to tell you that in all the craziness of war, this “Alice in Wonderland” scenario defies not only basic physics, but common sense.  And that’s what the American people have—they’re not stupid. 

2. That the President, moving away from the alleged sharpshooter, up six floors, can be shot in the back of his head and snap suddenly back and to the left—although again common sense and the naked eye tell us that he should be going forward when he receives that shot. 

3. That coincidentally there was a supposedly empty fence to the right front of the President, which when you stand there in Dealey Plaza presents a nearly perfect eye line at the President—and would naturally justify the motion of the President back and to the left if he were shot from the front right.  Now the fact that the fence was supposedly unoccupied during this whole time when the entire plaza was filled with eager observers of the popular President further defies common sense.

4. That more than fifty witnesses testified at the time to the Warren Commission (WC) that the shot that they heard or saw a shot coming from that fence area to the front of the President. 

5. That the Assassination Records Review Board (ARRB, 1994-1998), has proven that over 40 witnesses in two different locations saw a large avulsive (i.e. penetrating outward) wound in the rear of JFK’s skull. This includes highly qualified medical personnel at both Parkland and Bethesda, as well as FBI agents James Sibert and Frank O’Neil who were at the autopsy in 1963 and restated it to the board. This wound again indicates an exit wound from a shot to the front. Conclusion: the President was shot from at least 2 sides, front and back—not one location.

6. There is additionally an accidental film made that day, the Zapruder film that shows a sequence of motions that indicate 5, probably 6 shots fired. It also shows that when the President is shot in the back by the WC’s ‘single bullet,’ that he’s moving forward while Governor Connally is still holding his Stetson hat, which is impossible if he was hit by the same bullet in his right wrist. Connally himself said that he was not hit by the same bullet as Kennedy and added, “I do not for one second believe the conclusions of the Warren Commission (WC).”

Yet the mainstream media in recent weeks, from the highest levels of the New York Times, Time Magazine, New Yorker, NBC, CNN, etc. ad nauseam, tells us more strongly than ever that the ‘consensus’ and ‘history’ bare out the fact that Oswald, with his twisted motives, did it alone with his Mannlicher-Carcano WWII rifle. What kind of history are they talking about? Not the one that is perhaps far darker for them to deal with and unsettles their smug belief in some form of American exceptionalism, by which our politics are unflawed by such corruption. Is this why the media, with very few exceptions, has not allowed any serious presentation of the evidence against their official story from qualified pathologists, scientists, photographic and ballistics experts, and doctors, etc. who disagree with the WC’s handpicked ‘experts’? I’ve rarely seen brought to review the many fine works by these qualified individuals, including most recently—
Robert Groden’s “JFK: Absolute Proof” (2013), James W. Douglass’ “JFK and the Unspeakable” (2008), and James DiEugenio’s “Reclaiming Parkland”(2013). Particularly note in DiEugenio’s book Chapters 4-7, which deconstructs the massive 2000-paged tome by prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi, overly praised by the media probably because very few people have actually read it. To read DiEugenio’s deconstruction is to fully understand the shaping of the lie.

As Friday approaches, please take a moment and remember no professional marksman in any simulated test has ever achieved the Warren Commission scenario with Oswald’s rifle; the trigger pull was too difficult, the scope was misaligned, and the firing pin was defective.

To my knowledge, there have been at least 4 attempts with professionals to simulate the shooting without that rifle. No person ever achieved what the Commission said Oswald did on the first try, i.e., attain 2 of 3 direct hits in the head and shoulder area to President Kennedy in six seconds.  Carlos Hathcock, possibly the best sniper of the Vietnam era with 92 confirmed kills, tried it several times. He could never do it on the first try.  He gave up.

This alleged shooting has only been achieved with superficial computer simulations such as the ballyhooed Peter Jennings’ 2003 TV documentary, which supposedly justifies the SBT. Further, when the FBI turned over results of their Neutron Activation Analysis tests on the paraffin cast of Oswald’s cheek, Commission counsel Norman Redlich wrote they could not conclude from it that Oswald fired a rifle that day.
In the face of this recent onslaught on the truth, let us be very exact about Oswald’s alleged guilt. He was never given a trial, either staged or fair. As such, he should always be identified as the alleged assassin.

History is a struggle of the memory. But when the counter evidence cannot be introduced into that memory, then we are closer to a Soviet-era propaganda mindset, in which the mainstream media, in their consensus to cover this up as if it were a Reichstag Fire, deeply discredit our country and continue to demean our common sense. We must question those who tell us what to think.

Oliver Stone


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