I love a good conspiracy. JFK II: The Bush Connection sounds right up my street – especially since I once swallowed up Oliver Stone’s dissertation like an apostle to scripture. But while my proclivities to be initially peaked hasn’t been diminished, I’ve become more discerning. Case Closed by Gerald Posner took care of the rest of my irrational leanings and closed the book for me on JFK by simply presenting the known facts.
To start, the magic bullet wasn’t so magic. It traveled a straight line between Kennedy’s throat through Connolly’s wrist then resting in his thigh. In contrast to the theatrics portrayed in Stone’s courtroom scene, Kennedy’s elevated and interior seating to Connolly’s position provides the endpoints.
The bullet also acted in accordance to the 1922 Geneva Conventions. This was in response to the carnage of WWI where bullets would enter a body, kick around inside and inflict maximum damage. In contrast, Full Metal Jacket bullets were intended to pierce bodies or stop at bone. The idea was to preserve life and the magic bullet demonstrates this.
The next shot – captured by Zapruder and reiterated by Costner in JFK – shows the president clearly succumbing to conspiracy. “Back and to the right,” Garrison prosecutes, but medical facts take precedence.
The problem is we’re not witnessing the kill shot yet. The magic bullet severed the president’s spinal cord and caused every muscle in his body to seize. The result: Back and to the left.
If that doesn’t satisfy, conspiracy dictates that the wound must be made to appear as it came from the rear. Posner points out that such a redirection would have taken a skilled teamed of surgeons and far more than a few hours to pull it off. The crucial omission: augmenting a living body is far different than fudging the facts on one that has entered rigor.
Moving onto the assassin, enlisting an Oswald in a global conspiracy practically disproves the entire industry that has arisen since the crime. Not only a loner, Oswald was a complete loser, wannabe who never completing anything he started and whose grand plans always ended in failure. Those seeking a patsy’s strings to pull would have done better to enlist the good humor man.
But denial dies hard so how does the mafia allow Oswald to escape and be taken into police custody. Jack Ruby also makes an unlikely accomplice to fulfill the first rule of assassination – kill the assassin.
Another Wannabe, Ruby was long a fixture at the Dallas Police Department. Always talking in hopes of playing some role as an informant or pretend deputy, his high profile would negate his use. More importantly, his entry into the scene on the day in question was entirely serendipitous.
In the Western Union office that morning to wire money to one of his strippers, clerks remember him being no particular rush. Across the street, the announced transfer of Oswald was two hours behind.
At the key moment, Ruby slips into the building as a traffic snafu at the front had the rear guard leave his post to assist. Certainly convenient, and allowing for the opening, the drivers and guards become part of the conspiracy along with the doctors at Bethesda, Castro, LBJ and space aliens.
They all thus pale in comparison to the one person who would also have to be part of the kill the assassin segment of your program – Lee Harvey Oswald.
About to be taken downstairs for transfer, officers asked Oswald if he wanted anything before leaving. He requested his sweater. That delayed his departure by two minutes, and had it been subtracted from the timeline, Oswald would have been gone even before Ruby entered the building.
Not even the half of it, Posner’s dissertation of the known fact closes the case. Still, I wonder what JFK II has to say. Sorry, I just can’t help myself.