JFK ASSASSINATION – III

Previous blogs discussed issues 1 – 4, about the basic condition of Oswald’s rifle and Oswald’s qualities as a marksman. This blog will discuss Lee Harvey Oswald.

ISSUE 5: Politics.

Oswald’s politics have been investigated, considered, hyped and misinterpreted. Oswald said he was a “Marxist, not a communist.” In the Leftist world that is like saying “I’m a Christian, not a Catholic [Lutheran, etc.]” Marxism is a philosophy; Christianity is a faith rooted and using philosophical means to bring followers to Jesus. Unlike Islam or Judaism there is no law by which to structure a civil society based upon interpretations of the teachings of Jesus. Indeed, in the Christian world most of the wars among Christian nations have stemmed from disagreements from one interpretation of Christianity or another. Marxism elevates economics to primary importance in civil society and attempts to structure society around these economic truths. Communism unsuccessfully uses Marxism to establish and perpetuate itself. 

I believe Oswald understood these differences between Marxism and Communism. He moved to the Soviet Union intending to live his life there. He married a Russian. When he decided to leave the Soviet Union, remarkably his wife was allowed to go with him. That freedom of travel might indicate that Oswald was going to spy or be a sleeper for the Soviets in America. 

But little about Oswald recommended him to the Soviets for espionage or sleeper purposes. He was an American; his returning made him high profile. He had a Russian born wife. He wasn’t very intelligent. After returning to the United Stats, he joined leftist organizations and met leftists, and at some points distributed leaflets. He bought a rifle and was photographed with it, writing a leftist mentor a caption, Fascist killer. All this plus other facts suggest Oswald was a blowhard and a braggart. That’s not someone to put on anyone’s espionage payroll.

ISSUE 6. Rifle Ownership.

Oswald owned a rifle from March 1963. That rifle was fitted with a cheap scope. Ownership and possession are not the same thing. Indeed, Oswald did not possess the rifle the whole time. Presumably it was in storage, at someone’s house. It is unknown who had access to the rifle or if Oswald let someone use it. Note, Oswald did not have a car; he did not drive. Days before November 22 Oswald returned to the place where the rifle was stored claiming he was taking curtain rods. In subsequent investigations the curtain rods became Oswald’s rifle. 

ISSUE 7. First Assassination Attempt.

Documents found in the possession of Oswald’s wife support the theory that Oswald used his new rifle in April 1963 to shoot at General Walker, retired. Oswald surveyed the shooting site for two months. That shot was at night. The general was sitting at his desk in a lighted room. It was an easy shot at a stationery target. Ballistics were inconclusive about the rifle. Oswald left instructions with his wife about what to do if he were arrested.

ISSUE 8. Oswald’s Ventures Until October 1963.

Oswald moved around a lot. His wife lived with another woman, speaker of English and Russian. Oswald held various jobs. He traveled to Mexico City. He went to New Orleans. He returned to Dallas.

ISSUE 9. Employment Along Motorcade.

It was certainly fortuitous that the presidential motorcade passed by the building where Oswald had a job from mid-October 1963. The motorcade route was presented in the newspapers no later than November 20, 1963. What we’re supposed to believe, this Marine Corp marksman decided to kill the President when the motorcade passed his workplace. This spur of the moment decision is unlike the care he took when trying to kill General Walker seven months earlier.

The suppositions for the Oswald’s mindset to commit this assassination are highly speculative. There are not written ramblings about JFK {Robert Kennedy and Sirhan-Sirhan}. Whether Oswald was mentally -ill is supported by sketchy evidence. He wasn’t overly intelligent. He was a flake and unstable. Oswald was paranoid about the government surveilling him. Many of those disabilities would make his ability to act as an assassin on three days notice (November 19, 20, 21) unlikely. Initially bothering Oswald would be self-preservation: If I shoot from the School Book Depository, every cop in the world will be in the building in a minute. I’ll be trapped like a rat by a government I don’t like. I wish I were in the Soviet Union. How does Oswald get the rifle to the building? On the bus? No bus driver or passenger saw him carrying a rifle or curtain rods onto the bus. No one saw him bring in his show-and-tell exhibit in or put it anywhere.  No one saw Oswald construct a sniper’s nest along side the Sixth Floor window. No one saw Oswald outside the building looking the site over on November 19, 20 or 21. 

These are concerns that would enter the mind of every Marine marksman because getting away or defending the position is the training.

ISSUE 10. Sixth Floor. Shot One.

Below the Sixth Floor window, Houston Street approaches the School Book Depository on the perpendicular. At the intersection below traffic can make a 270 degree turn onto Main Street, or a 300 degree turn onto Elm Street roughly running on a diagonal toward the underpass.

All vehicles in the presidential motorcade had to slow to a crawl, 5 miles an hour to turn, for appearance, comfort and safety. 

President Kennedy was in the right backseat of the car. The First Lady, Mrs. Kennedy, was in the left backseat of the car.

Any shooter in the Sixth Floor window is standing (a more difficult shot) looking down at the intersection. Oswald purportedly aimed at the President 90 feet away. He fired. This shot was “mistaken” for a “backfiring” car.

Shot One missed. Oswald missed by yards. It has been analyzed and tested that this bullet hit the road or something in the road. It broke apart and a fragment went as far down Elm Street as the overpass about 150 yards off.

For the ricochet to travel that distance, it had to hit the street on the left side of the Presidential limousine, where the First Lady was sitting and at least nine feet from the President.

If Shot One had hit the street between the School Book Depository and the Presidential limousine [on the right side where the President was sitting], the ricochet and all fragments would have gone into the car. Apparently, no bullets or fragments were found in the limousine.

ISSUE 11. Oswald’ State of Mind.

Shot One was Oswald’s kill shot, easy, close very slow moving target, everything a marksman ought to be able to hit at 30 yards. He missed.

It is very likely Oswald intended to take one shot, the easy kill shot. He shot, left the window and did not know that he missed. Trees obscured his view. He put the rifle to the side and hurried away. He was on a lower Depository Floor, in the stairwell. He didn’t seem rushed; he was cool and civil. He passed a police officer who didn’t notice anything unusual about him.

If Oswald took shots Two and Three, he had to reload before each shot. Rather than shoot from concealment, inside the room facing Houston Street, he had to move to look down Elm Street. While reloading, adjusting his position so he doesn’t lean over and not to shoot while his body was partially twisted, trying to keep the barrel of the rifle from sticking out the window. What’s a snapshot of Oswald’s thinking at that moment? I missed! How did I do that? I shot at the General and missed an easy shot! I took an easy shot at the President and missed! I’m a lousy shot. I can’t hit the broadside of a barn. This rifle is not good. It’s in poor condition! I should have spent more time at the firing range. I never should have done this. I have to hurry to take more shots!

This is a lot of think about for anyone to consider while moving himself to shoot at a moving target that was moving away at 12 miles an hour.

If Oswald carried three rounds with him, what happened to the other rounds? Where did he keep the added rounds, 2, 3 and more?In his pockets? I’ve heard and seen no evidence of rounds on the window frame, handy and ready to load. Oswald wasn’t wearing shooting gear, a vest where ammunition could be quickly obtained. Presumably, he was in work clothes. No vest was found in the School Book Depository. If Oswald had put out rounds, he likely would have put out more than two rounds on the window sill or someplace handy to the Sixth Floor Window.

Oswald did not lose a bullet on the Sixth Floor Window. None was found. Remarkably, Oswald policed his shots. No one found shell casings on the Sixth Floor floor at or near the window. No one found a spent casing in the chamber of the rifle left at the scene. Oswald did not have bullets or shell casings on him at home. None were found anywhere he traveled by bus or taxi.

Needless to say, if Oswald had to fish rounds from the pockets of his work clothes, he could not have taken Shots Two and Three. It would have taken much too long. If he were rushed to extract rounds from pockets, he likely would have dropped some on the floor near the window.

ISSUE 12. Psychology of Assassination.

When shooting at a high profile target, most assassins get close. It eliminates doubt and intensifies hatred, delusions and demented motivations. Assassinations with rifles, at a distance, have different methods and motivations. For instance James Earl Ray in 1968 had an escape plan; he was tracked and arrested in Europe. But Oswald’s after-the-incident actions are at best poorly conceived and distorted, unlike a Marine marksman who is trained to get away.

Either Oswald was plenty stupid or he had no reason to get away. Americans do not know if Oswald was on his lunch hour at the time of the shooting. Oswald left the School Book Depository by the front door before it was closed. He went home, got a jacket and went out, taking a bus to a business district. He was stopped by a Dallas police officer, whom he shot with a handgun. 

At that time he knew the cops were after him for the death of the officer. Whether he knew he was a “person of interest” in the death of the President, we don’t know. Oswald next went to the movies, albeit without paying, where he was arrested.

An intelligent assassin would have assumed a disguise – mustache and a wig, using a cane, and he would have traveled away. Not for Oswald. He was in public and not running. In March 1963 Oswald left instructions for his wife, with whom he was living, when he tried to shoot General Walker, but left no writing or instructions for his wife in November 1963.

ISSUE 13. Killing of Oswald. 

On Sunday, November 24, 1963, the American people watched Jack Ruby kill Lee Harvey Oswald. 

The American people never got much of the story of Oswald, his background, his intelligence, his abilities and every detail of his life from November 20-21 and especially on November 22, 1963.

Oswald was dead. Quick resolution. Case closed.

 

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