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A Look at the Single Bullet Theory..

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posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 11:23 AM

A Look at the Single Bullet Theory..


(Arlen Specter attempting to test the Single Bullet Theory on Behalf of the Warren Commission)

Hello once again ATS,

As most know, I find the topic of the JFK assassination to be a personal favourite now. It's become a topic I can't help but research whenever I have the time and in my personal opinion I think a conspiracy, in some form or another, did occur at more than one point in time whether it be as the assassination was taking place, prior to it occurring and of course in the immediate and long-term aftermath. But there's one part of this very fascinating case in particular that has always fascinated me, right from the point where I first came across it and started to learn about what it was, and that's the Single Bullet theory - quite possibly the most discussed and debated over theory in the history of conspiracies.

What I always found particularly interesting was just how unlikely, to me, it seemed to be. How could one single bullet do so much damage, and yet be found oh so conveniently on a gurney in hospital practically fully intact? It seems impossible. This not forgetting the bullet supposedly stopped in mid air at one point, moved a couple of inches to the right, and then continued on It's journey, this to make the theory work according to some. After all they do call it "the magic bullet" for a reason. But, that's not necessarily true and of course no one can just deny this theory as a whole is true for no other reason being that it seems unlikely after all, that's not what we're supposed to be about.

The funny this is, and this may not be a popular point to bring up, but once you get down to the actual facts of the theory, and do the best you can to ignore the myths and rumours and so on, it's a theory that's actually a great deal more plausible than you or anyone else would originally think. Of course though that's not to say I actually believe the theory explains what really happened just yet.. because I don't. Instead I'm more "on the fence" than anything else really, and leaning more towards the non-believers side than anything else. But that's exactly why I'm opening up this thread. I want to discuss this case with other members here, and I'd love to hear particularly from those members who happen to believe this theory adequately explains the events which took place... if such a member should exist.

In my opinion this is truly one of the fascinating theories to debate and discuss over and that's one of the reasons why I'm opening up this thread. I think it deserves a genuine, intelligent discussion from members here, especially, and I could be mistaken, as I'm yet to find a single thread here solely looking at this theory which is a real shame.

It's also probably worth pointing out that this thread is one looking at one single theory.. the Single bullet theory. Not the driver (William Greer) theory, not the "autopsy was manipulated" theory, not the Oswald exhumation theory, not the Ruby was in with the mafia theory.. I want to dedicate a thread to this one single theory. I think It's an important theory to discuss and It's by far the most important theory ever put forth by the Warren Commission. So I'd appreciate it if posters wishing to talk about something other than this theory do so elsewhere in others threads, not this one.

Thanks for your time and I hope you continue reading..


With starting this thread I feel as though the first thing I should talk about is quite obvious really. This is a thread looking to create a discussion on the single bullet theory... so firstly let me explain what this theory is..

What Is The Single Bullet Theory?


The single bullet theory, also commonly known as the "magic" bullet theory, and may be referred to as the SBT at certain points from now on in this thread, is a theory introduced by the Warren Commission, which will also be referred to as the "WC" at points in this thread from now on. Now, the warren commission itself is an official investigation which was originally set up by Lyndon Baines Johnson, the previous Vice-President but with the assassination of the previous President JFK, Johnson was promoted. With starting this investigation Johnson then went onto "recruit" the reluctant Earl Warren, Chief justice at the time. The WC went onto set itself a goal to "ascertain, evaluate and report upon the facts relating to the assassination of the late President John F. Kennedy" and it ran from November 27, 1963 to September 24, 1964 resulting in an 888 page report attempting to fully explain exactly how the assassination took place.

(The Warren Commission Report being handed to President Johnson)

The final conclusions of the Warren Commission, which are of particular importance in this thread, are as follows:

(1) The shots which killed President Kennedy and wounded Governor Connally were fired from the sixth floor window at the southeast corner of the Texas School Book Depository.

(2) The weight of the evidence indicates that there were three shots fired.

(3) Although it is not necessary to any essential findings of the Commission to determine just which shot hit Governor Connally, there is very persuasive evidence from the experts to indicate that the same bullet which pierced the President's throat also caused Governor Connally's wounds. However, Governor Connally's testimony and certain other factors have given rise to some difference of opinion as to this probability but there is no question in the mind of any member of the Commission that all the shots which caused the President's and Governor Connally's wounds were fired from the sixth floor window of the Texas School Book Depository.

It's also worth pointing out at this stage that part 3 above is especially interesting as the Commission even state themselves that others, particularly John Connolly himself, or even his wife Nellie I believe, don't believe the Single Bullet theory has any fact to it. Certain members of the Commission, as well as Johnson, started showing doubt about it's authenticity also. From what I've read and seen in interviews of the Connolly couple in particular is that they quite strongly believe a separate bullet to the one which struck Kennedy struck John Connolly, something the FBI originally believed in their investigation prior to the WC in fact.

(John Connolly and his wife Nelly with John and Jackie Kennedy just prior to the assassination)

What's particularly interesting about these conclusions is what's highlighted in part 3 as the Commission concluded that "but there is no question in the mind of any member of the Commission that all the shots which caused the President's and Governor Connally's wounds were fired from the sixth floor window of the Texas School Book Depository" and as they have already accounted for 2 of the other bullets of the available 3 they had to work with, as only 3 spent shells were found in the snipers nest, this meant that there was a single bullet left (this is discussed in a bit more detail in the next section).

Now in this conclusion they also highlight that "However, Governor Connally's testimony and certain other factors have given rise to some difference of opinion as to this probability" - this being an expression of doubt amongst Connolly, his wife Nelly as well as others as to the authenticity of the theory. Well, the others who expressed the most doubt about it was actually some members of the commission itself, such as Gerald Ford, Hale Boggs, Richard Russell and John Cooper for example. President Johnson also expressed his doubt through telephone calls to Hoover which I believe were released under the ARRB.

It's funny though, the conclusion from the WC is that all members are in agreement yet they highlight that some others disagree.. unfortunate as those "others" turned out to be commission members also which means they didn't all agree at all. They often expressed their doubts about the theories authenticity in fact.

(Arlen Specter once again testing the SBT)

It's also wholly unprofessional to submit the report when all the members pushing it are not in total agreement, especially on the biggest factor in the entire investigation and by far.. After all how can they go onto claim that Lee Harvey was the sole assassin and then express doubts about the single bullet theory? Having doubts about this theory alone means you have doubts about Lee being the sole assassin and if Lee is not the sole assassin then a conspiracy in some form did occur - that's exactly why this theory is really important. It's contradictions like this which have also turned the WC into a mockery today.

Anyway, continuing on, the Warren Commission investigations also state that they are unsure which shot missed the limousine, but of the 3 fired 1 of them did indeed miss at some point. This was also most likely the first shot as found by the HSCA investigation in the late 70's. This missed shot being the one which went onto wound witness James Tague situated near the overpass.

Since the last shot also struck the president in the head it means that the single bullet theory must be from the second shot, and it was this single shot which they claim was fired from the South East, 6th floor window of the Texas School Book Depository Building. According to the theory this bullet fired from a 6.5mm carcano mannlicher rifle owned by Lee Harvey Oswald, first struck President Kennedy in the "base of the neck", exited below the Adams apple, further traveled to strike Governor of Texas John Connolly, who was situated directly in front of Kennedy, in the chest, go onto shatter his wrist and then embed itself in his thigh, Connolly enduring most of the damage despite being the victim who was struck second and thus from the bullet which had already lost most of it's energy by this point.

Z-Frame 238

If all of this is true then taking into consideration all of the wounds sustained by both men this one single bullet fired from a 6.5mm Carcano Rifle passed through approximately "15 layers of clothing, 7 layers of skin, and approximately 15 inches of tissue, struck a necktie knot, removed 4 inches of rib, and shattered a radius bone" - This is where the doubt for many people come in I would assume. After all it does seem unlikely at least.

This is the single bullet theory in a quick summary. And one key thing about this really should be maintained at all times.. the single theory is just that at this stage,.. a theory. It's not fact as of yet thus we have room to debate it. For me however it really has become an incredibly fascinating, yet at the same time very frustrating theory to think about. I know I must've changed my mind several times by now.

Anyway in this next section is a quick continuation of what the Single bullet theory is, and how they (WC) came to It's conclusion..
edit on 21-12-2011 by Rising Against because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 11:24 AM

How Did The Commission Come To This Conclusion?


When one thinks of the WC they think of It's very well known, key members; Earl Warren (for where it gains It's name the 'Warren' Commission), Richard Russell Jr., John Sherman Cooper, Hale Boggs, Future President Gerald Ford, Allen Welsh and John J. McCloy. Little do they remember the other key figures such as J. Lee Rankin for example, Howard Willens even and of course Arlen Specter for which the Single Bullet Theory is most probably his brainchild.

Now before continuing it has to be said, as far as I'm able to tell, and perhaps I'm being slightly biased here, but as far as I'm able to tell the original goal of the warren commission was in fact not to wholly find the facts of the case. As far as I can tell the commission had one primary goal in mind and that was to show how Oswald could've pulled off the assassination in the first place - Oswald at the time of the commission being set up was already dead after being murdered by Jack Ruby on the 24th of November, 2 days after JFK and without any real evidence it was widely accepted that he was responsible for the assassination.

(Main Warren Commission members)

It certainly doesn't take a genius to tell this plan is obviously flawed. You can't just look to try and prove how someone could've done something when in reality you aren't even sure he's responsible in the first place.. Especially when it involves something as important as the murder of the President. After all, what if others are involved? They're going to be completely ignored and they're about to get away with literally the crime of the century.

This was not all. The Commission, and it was surprisingly open about this fact from what I'm able to find, set about a goal of dispelling rumours whenever possible, something Edward Jay Epstein heavily criticized them for particularly a short while after the commission report was made public. In fact he concluded upon hearing of this, and particularly of hearing from Gerald Ford that dispelling rumours "was a major concern of the commission", and this is a direct quote from the book 'Headshot' by G. Paul Chambers which I have with me right now:

"There was thus a duality of purpose. If the explicit purpose of the commission was to ascertain and expose the facts, the implicit purpose was to protect the national interest by dispelling rumours. These two purposes were compatible so long as the damaging rumours were untrue. In a conflict... one of the commission’s purposes would emerge as dominant." Source: Headshot: The science behind the JFK assassination: Page 32, line 10 - 15.

So the commission seemingly made it a goal to dispel what it deemed rumours whenever possible. That can mean anything though. Such as the possibility of a second shooter from the knoll perhaps, or even a second man in the window of the 6th floor snipers nest which was seen by witnesses such as Mrs. Eric Walther or Arnold Rowland for example.

Now, as I said before, when we think of the Warren Commission we only really think of its key members highlighted above. Little do people focus on the junior staff who were employed to take on the bulk of the work. The Junior Council consisted of people like Melvin A. Eisenberg, Arlen Specter, Samuel Stern, Burt W. Griffen, David Belin, W. David Slawson and Wesley J. Liebeler for example. As there was so much work to be done the investigation duties were split into different sections (Such as establishing Lee Harvey Oswald's background and Possible motives to a separate section establishing the basic facts of the case such as the sequence of shots).

(Arlen Specter)

Well, Arlen Specter was one of those assigned to the role of establishing key facts of the case and determining the most plausible shooting sequence given the available evidence. Assigned alongside him was attorney Francis W. H. Adams who ultimately was a "no-show" for the most part leaving the work to Specter alone. Due to Adams being, for the most part, absent one of the most vital areas of the entire Warren Commission was left up to one single man - Arlen Spector. He alone it would seem was responsible for providing us with the basic facts of the case, such as the sequence of shots for which we have the Single Bullet Theory. Again, quite an obvious flaw with-in the Commissions investigations.

Upon when the time came for live testing of the theory, at which point I believe the theory was barely more than a mere idea still, It was around mid-March of 1964. This was due to the on-going Jack Ruby trial which was taking place at this time. Ruby's legal rights weren't to be "compromised" thus the commission waited out it's investigation duties until the trial was to end on the 14th of March, 1964. As the commission was on a deadline they were now racing the clock making thing's even harder than they already were.

A problem also arose with the current investigations as it was still commonly believed Connolly was struck with a separate bullet to JFK, which was the conclusion of a previous FBI investigation, but upon anlysis of the the famous Zapruder film, which can be seen below, it was found that it was running at 18.3 frames per second. This is important as the very latest that Oswald, or the 6th floor shooter, would've got off the shot was at Zapruder frame 224/225 as we can see JFK quite clearly reacting to a shot, and the earliest show could've been at frame 207 as the shooter’s view from frame 166 and 207 was blocked by a large Oak tree outside the Texas schoolbook depository. But another problem arose....

It was also shown and proven that Governor Connolly, situated directly in front of Kennedy and according to the earliest FBI sources was struck with a different bullet to the 2 which was known to have struck Kennedy in the back and head, that he was struck no later than Zapruder frame 243 at an absolute maximum as he can be observed moving in such a way which would make a shot from the TSDB matching his known wounds impossible beyond this point.

Live fire testing also proved that a shooter using a Mannlicher Carcano bolt rifle could not have fired any faster than approximately 2.3 seconds (Expert times – Oswald was certainly no expert) and there is now an impossible timeline for the shooter to match. As the assumption was that Oswald was the single shooter it was seemingly here than the idea of a single bullet causing the damage to both men became that little bit more than a theory - the only possible theory for one shooter which is all the commission had to work with as only 3 gun shells were found in the snipers nest. More shots would mean a shot from another gun which would mean another shooter which would mean a conspiracy had taken place and that was simply out of the question.

The goal of the commission was to dispel rumours, have one voice explaining away all the uncertainties and calm down those who feared a larger plot was taking place.. such as a Cuban or Soviet plot which many feared for example.

It's also worth pointing out again that it was seemingly accepted at first that 3 shots were fired but 2 of them struck JFK (back and head) while the other struck Governor Connelly in the back and created the damage to his wrist and thigh. But with the very public emergence of James Tague, the other injured man in Dealey Plaza, it became very clear, to the commission, that at least 1 shot missed the presidential limousine altogether, instead striking a pavement near the overpass where Mr. Tague was stood. But as there were wounds to Kennedy and also Connolly and 2 of the injuries are already accounted for we’re left with a single bullet and a time limit which doesn’t allow for a second shot from the same rifle thus the only conclusion can be, assuming there is one shooter, is that this one bullet caused all the damage seen to both men.

Red marker: Probably location of the first shot from the TSDB.

[color=LightBlue]Blue Marker: Location of James Tague

Anyway, despite many criticisms, even from high ranking members of the warren commission, and even from President Johnson himself, it's the accepted theory on what really happened to JFK and Governor Connolly in November of 1963, and how it happened exactly, and It's the theory that researchers are left to either debunk or defend. In posting this thread I’m here to ask the members of ATS what their opinion is on this quite fascinating theory.

Thanks and here's my own personal look at the series of wounds sustained and my opinion on whether the Commission was correct in their conclusions.

The Back Wound


This part of the case, determining where the back wound of JFK was situated, is key to this theory. If it's too low or even too high, then it and it alone could debunk the single bullet theory as the theory goes onto state that this bullet passed through Kennedy's throat and then went onto further strike Connolly sat directly in front.

It's also very important to find the exact location so we can prove that the shot either hit the neck or struck the back – a key factor. And then from there the neck wound can be discussed. So first off we should establish exactly where this wound struck but that in itself can be difficult..

The Warren Commission claim it struck at the "base of the neck" such as seen in Exhibit 385, going onto exit through the throat just below the Adams apple:

Another drawing produces this result which is once again showing a strike to the neck and then throat:

The WC place the wound nearer the neck line while the HSCA investigation, a investigation head by Jim Garrison in the late 70's, about 2 inches lower than this. They also believe the SBT was in fact correct, but to make it work they position the victim in a completely illogical position as seen here:

This is flat-out wrong. Here's frame 226 of the Zapruder film, we can see Kennedy is quite clearly not in the position shown by the HSCA and there's no indication he was ever in this position behind the Stemmons freeway sign also:

Of course It's not the clearest image to see but it's still quite obvious to make out, at a point where JFK had just been struck he is not in the position the HSCA show him in.

Is the commission correct though, was JFK struck at the base of the neck? Hmm, maybe. But I think we have to consider the other possibility - he was struck much lower down as highlighted in his own autopsy report:

Of course some claim this report was wrote up too quickly and the drawing is not to scale, but his own deth certificate seems to suggest he was struck in around the same area. In fact It even goes into a bit more detail into the exact location. Here it is for further reading:

Page 1:

Page 2:

In the official death certificate the placement of the wound also lays around the area of Kennedy's third thoracic vertebra which to be exact would be around this area:

Upon looking at JFK's shirt we seem to once again find a mark at around this area, not around the neckline:

If all of this is true though, and Kennedy really was struck in the back as opposed to the neck - as the wound to the throat was just below the Adams apple and the shot came from a higher trajectory making the wound to the back of the president automatically higher than the throat wound - then this point could debunk this entire theory. It also would appear that multiple sources pointed towards the third thoracic vertebrae below the shoulder line.
edit on 21-12-2011 by Rising Against because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 11:25 AM

The Throat Wound


After having looked at the back wound - particularly how I believe JFK was struck in the back much lower than the WC state - I'd like to turn my attention to the wound the back wound supposedly went onto cause - the throat wound.

The warren commission in it's final conclusions stated that, for the single bullet theory to work, this single bullet must've gone right through the neck of the president and exited the area around JFK's adams apple and then still have enough energy to further strike Connolly situated in front of JFK. Of course I've shown I believe this is not possible already as the wound was not in a position to exit through the throat.. but for arguments sake I'll assume it could have..

First of all here is the famous "Stare of death" autopsy photo showing the throat wound:

JFK - Neck Wound

(As some may not exactly want to see an image of a man with a supposed gunshot wound to the throat, I won't show the actual image. Instead I'll show a link to the image which is of course found above.)

As opposed to what some disbelievers of this theory claim, Connolly was also situated in a position below JFK, they were not level in height as shown in this image here:

Anyway, the neck wound - Whether this wound was caused by the bullet exiting through the throat from previously entering the upper back/neck of JFK, I don't know. If anything it does seem unlikely to me. Parkland doctors however, those who were first to see Kennedy after the assassination took place, seem to believe, as a whole, that this particular wound was not an exit wound at all, instead an entry wound as it was small and very neat, very consistent with an entry wound as opposed to exit wounds, which could only mean a shot from somewhere towards the front of the limousine, perhaps a shot from the storm drain which so many believe occurred in fact.

Here's an aerial view of the storm drain which I just took from google maps:

The Red arrow is pointing to the (tough to see in this image) white cross which can be seen today in Dealey plaza today still, marking the location of the fatal head shot which can be observed as being frame 313 of the Zapruder film.

The Blue arrow is the approximate location of the storm drain which would be one of the only positions directly in front of the limousine which could provide a shot as witnesses would observe a sniper anywhere else out in the open. In fact If a shot did come from the front the only location I personally wound expect it to have come from wound be this location.

Anyway, immediately after the shooting took place, and quite luckily, the Presidential limousine was already heading onto Stemmons freeway (the shooting took place seconds before - in the famous Z film we can also see the sign to the freeway blocking our view of when the "magic bullet" struck) which was the best and fastest route to Parkland hospital. The limousine arriving as quickly as 12:38 I believe, perhaps earlier, with the assassination taking place at approximately 12:30.

With Kennedy as he was seemingly still alive and breathing albeit it very "irregularly" as noted by doctors, was Marion Thomas Jenkins, Malcolm Perry, Charles Baxter, Charles J. Carrico among others such as 2 more nurses who removed his clothing and back braces. A back wound couldn't immediately be found however, but the throat wound was more than obvious for everyone to observe. In order to save his life they quickly performed a tracheotomy over the wound. This obviously enlarged it.

Even so, prior to this it would seem as though the majority of those in Parkland who saw the throat wound initially described it as not an exit wound, instead an entrance wound of some sort. Although of course some of the doctors had their statements taken out of context they claimed, such as Malcolm Perry for example:

As the press is wont to do, they took my statement at the press conference out of context. I did say it looked like an entrance wound since it was small, but I qualified it by saying that I did not know where the bullets came from. I wish now that I had not speculated. Everyone ignored my qualification. It was a small wound, slightly ragged at the edges, and could have been an exit or entrance. By Sunday, after working on Oswald, I had learned my lesson, and I handed out a written statement to the press and took no questions. I had got a lot smarter in two days.

It was too small to be an exit wound from the back. Or was it? I personally would think so but according to some sources that may not be true. 'JFK Assassination Logic: How to Think about Claims of Conspiracy by John McAdams' may potentially provide an answer and as I can't paste any of the material here (as no text can be highlighted), here's a link to page 225:

JFK Assassination Logic: How to Think about Claims of Conspiracy - Page 225

But if JFK was struck in the back and this bullet didn't travel through the neck to exit through the adams apple though, instead striking JFK lower down in the back, where did the bullet go some might be asking? Well, I don't know. As far as I do know however no such bullet showed up in any x-ray. An interesting theory was thought up though, not by researchers of this case, but by those in charge of the autopsy later that evening on the 22nd, a rather "out there" theory that he was struck with an "ice bullet."

From autopsy-attendee FBI SA Francis O'Neill's sworn affidavit for the HSCA:

Some discussion did occur concerning the disintegration of the bullet. A general
feeling existed that a soft-nosed bullet struck JFK. There was discussion concerning
the back wound that the bullet could have been a "plastic" type or an "Ice" [sic]
bullet, one which dissolves after contact.

JFK Assassination Research Files

The Mary Ferrel Foundation website has a fantastic article on the Single Bullet Theory as well, particularly on the medical evidence, which can be found here: Mary Ferrell Foundation - Medical Evidence - Discussion

A snippet of interest:

Where did the extra bullets go? Another argument is rarely stated but relevant. If the single bullet theory is false, and JFK's neck wound and back wound were caused by separate bullets, where did these two bullets go? X-rays showed no bullets in the body, so if these two wounds were not connected, then where did they exit? There are various possibilities, some more plausible than others:

- Frontal shot. A frontal shot to the neck might have exited through the back of JFK's head, as Dr. Kemp Clark of Parkland Hospital speculated on 11/22 (ARRB MD41, p.5). But there is no evidence in the Zapruder film for this. And it would still leave the back wound without an exit. Regarding this, the lead autopsy doctor, Humes, wondered aloud about this during the autopsy, and speculated about the possibility of an "ice bullet" which dissolved in the body (ARRB MD47, p.6).

- Not bullets at all. In theory, both wounds could have been caused by dissolving "ice" bullets, but this seems strange and unlikely. More plausibly, David Mantik has proposed the idea that possibly a piece of glass from a windshield strike pierced JFK's throat and caused the small wound there. This is contradicted by the intact nature of the windshield supplied to the Warren Commission, but the authenticity of that windshield is questionable. Mantik has also suggested the possibility that the back wound was caused by shrapnel.

- Front-to-back. Perhaps the two wounds did connect, but in reverse - a frontal neck shot existed the back wound, which was of exit not entrance. The idea that the back wound is an exit wound would, however, be at variance with the autopsy doctors and expert opinion based on autopsy photographs).

- Bullets remained in the body. Bullets could have lodged in the body and been removed prior to autopsy. The enlarged throat wound seen in autopsy pictures has caused some to speculate about this. But apart from the "coup" scenario this implies, high-speed bullets are extremely unlikely to be stopped by mere tissue.

- Third Wound. Milicent Cranor has raised yet another idea in The Third Wound, that the supposed "brain matter" seen in an autopsy photograph was actually an entrance wound at the base of the head, and a bullet entered there and exited the neck. In executive session, Warren Commission Counsel J. Lee Rankin said that medical reports indicated that possibly a fragment came out the throat. These possibilities again leave the back wound without an exit. Since many witnesses said the first shot sounded different from the others (like a "firecracker"), perhaps it was a low-velocity dud which stuck in the back, and was then removed prior to autopsy.

The Autopsy really can’t be forgotten though, especially as we may have evidence of a potential cover-up at this point. You see unfortunately, and whatever reason, the secret service agents in Parkland hospital disallowed an autopsy to be undertaken on the now deceased body of JFK which was In fact a direct violation of Texas state law. Instead they forcefully removed him – forcefully in the sense they ended up drawing guns literally forcing the doctors to hand him over so they could do their own autopsy on the body – and they transported his body immediately to Air Force One where he arrived a few hours previously.

This action created one of the most mysterious aspects of the entire JFK case in fact as the casket they took JFK’s body in was clearly observed to be a bronze casket – the famous bronze casket in fact – and he was neatly wrapped in sheets, but upon arriving at Bethesda Naval Hospital, Maryland, later that evening he was observed to be in a grey, military casket and in a black body bag.

It seems that the president was not here the officials stated he was. What’s even more interesting about this particular anomaly can be found in the millions of different documents in the Mary Ferrell Foundation website, particularly the account by Betehsda Naval hospital corpsman Dennis David. The official documents of what he claimed can be found below, these documents only found thanks to the ARRB.

This document can be found here.

This document can be found here.

This document can be found here.

This document can be found here.

I find these to be particularly interesting finds. They also bring up an interesting question. If we are to believe the official story of how the casket of Kennedy was handled is false, and how he was seemingly switched to a new one prior to arriving at Bethesda, how on earth do they expect us to believe other “official” areas of the case?

It’s also worth clarifying that Jackie Kennedy didn’t arrive at the hospital along with the famous bronze casket until 6:55pm as stated above. The official story of events telling us the autopsy didn’t start until after 8.00pm which we no know to be a complete lie.
edit on 21-12-2011 by Rising Against because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 11:26 AM

The Governors Wounds


John Connolly, the other man injured inside the Presidential Limousine on November 22nd, 1963, and he is also one of those responsible for making this theory that much more difficult. You see originally the FBI conducted an investigation on the assassination of JFK, this before the WC. In their conclusions JFK was first struck in a region around his upper back. John Connolly was then struck with another bullet causing all of his wounds. And finally another shot struck JFK this time however to the head causing most of the graphic damage seen that day.

As has been highlighted previously in this thread though the emergence of James Tague who was also injured that day by a stray bullet means the investigation into the JFK assassination now only have 2 bullets to work with as Tague was struck with a stray bullet which missed the limousine entirely. We know one of those bullets struck JFK in the head though at frame 313 of the Zapruder film so this means we now have only 1 bullet to work with. And as we can observe damage to both JFK and Governor Connolly this single bullet must've been responsible for both set of injuries as Oswald was the only possible shooter in the eyes of the commission as any more shooters means the presence of a conspiracy in some form and that was an impossibility.

(An image of John Connolly)

The wound's he actually sustained in the attack in Dealey Plaza were wounds to his back, his chest, his wrist and of course his thigh where the bullet was said to have later been recovered from in Parkland hospital. In fact here's an official drawing of the location of his wounds:

That's all good and well, but what does John Connolly himself say about what really happened? This clip coming from one of the best documentaries ever made on the JFK assassination, Rush to Judgement:

This is actually quite important as he has always maintained, as has Nellie Connolly (his wife), that he was struck with a different bullet to the one which struck JFK. In the above video for those who can't watch Connolly states, and is actually very adamant about the fact that he was struck with a different bullet to JFK as he heard it strike, he then turned to his right which we can see in the Zapruder frames below, and was in the process of turning back around which was when he was struck.

Zapruder frame 250 showing Connolly in the process of turning around to face Kennedy at which point he maintains he was not struck.

Zapruder frame 260 showing Connolly in the process of turning around to face Kennedy still.

Zapruder frame 275 showing Connolly facing almost all the way around at which point he maintains that he was not struck.

From looking at the film, and the expression on the face of Connolly, it looks awfully like he is reacting to a shot himself. But, according to his own words he is not, instead he is reacting to the shot which struck JFK just behind him and is turning around to see what happened exactly. It is only later (as he is turning back around) that the shot struck him he claims. Looking at the zapruder film after the frames above we can barely even see John Connolly let alone his body to determine is a shot has struck him so It's hard to tell if his recollection is indeed correct as he so adamantly claims it is.

We are able to see a rather startling anomaly though, this anomaly to JFK. Here's a quick Gif I made, unfortunately however it's too large to upload to ATS so all I can provide is a link. Now it's suspected that Connolly was struck at approximately frame 285, so upon watching this Gif please focus on the front of JFK's head, particularly on how he may be reacting to a shot whizzing past him:

A shot to Connolly debunking the Single Bullet Theory?

This video also goes into this issue in much more detail, and it even highlights the potential reactions from everyone else inside the limousine as this shot takes place, if it is indeed a genuine shot:

Bearing the above in mind however, and upon looking closely at the Zapruder film we're faced with anomalies such as this though also:

This is potentially a reaction to a shot, at the same time JFK is also reacting from, according to the WC, the very same bullet. We can see his jacket popping out. Now, I'm sure all members of ATS have heard of the name Jim Marrs, If not then here's a forum on ATS which is dedicated to him. He's a great researcher when it comes to the JFK case, this among others, and luckily he's taken the time out to post a few times on this board. Here are some of his comments on the Single Bullet Theory, more specifically his thoughts on the wounds sustained by John Connolly, which I simply had to add to this thread for discussion:

But, based on my own 43 years of research, I can tell you this as absolute fact --- no bullet passed through JFK's body. The head shot obviously fragmented and did not reach Connally. His throat shot, described by all Dallas medical personnel as a puncture wound -- in other words an entrance wound -- entered the front of his neck at about the level of his Adam's Apple and did not penetrate his neck. The back wound came from behind and entered at the third thoracic vertebra, which is below the shoulder blades. The autopsy doctors tried to probe this wound and found they could not track it through the body, in other words it did not pass through JFK's body, nor did it strike bone and therefore could not have sudden changed to an upward trajectory to exit his throat.

Connally obviously was struck by two separate slugs, one of which struck near the rear of his right armpit, shattered his right lung and exited near the right nipple on his chest. Standard ballistics deny that this slug could have entered his right wristbone and then swerved into his left thigh, the site of his final wound. Therefore, it would seem that a second slug came from the right side, entered his right wrist shattering the most dense bone in the upper body, and it, or fragments from it, ended up in the left thigh. Of course, to admit all this would mean that JFK and Connally were struck by a minimum of five shots, far too many for a lone assassin acting within 6 seconds. And what was to the right of the limousine at the time of Connally's wounding? The infamous Grassy Knoll.

Now take all of this as you will but personally I think there was more than one gunman shooting to make the wounds to both Kennedy (before the head shot) and Connolly work and above (apart from the quote from Jim Marrs) is some of my own views, thoughts and opinions as to how those wounds were sustained. Please read this next section (the final section) for my thoughts on how this single bullet was found.


Finding of CE 399


Another key aspect of this theory, one of the most key areas of it in fact, was actually the finding of the bullet itself (commonly referred to as CE 399), the bullet also earning the name "the pristine" bullet by many researchers of this case due to the, as one would expect from a name like that, pristine look of it. After all, here is how the bullet looked once it found:

Sure the bullet isn't completely "pristine" but It looks barely damaged at all still. Certainly not what one would expect from a bullet which passed through 2 men as well as "15 layers of clothing, 7 layers of skin, and approximately 15 inches of tissue, struck a necktie knot, removed 4 inches of rib, and shattered a radius bone." And was then embedded in Connolly's thigh. Not likely at all.

According to an article on the History-Matters website however, this bullet was designed to do pretty much what it did:

CE-399 is a long, stable military round designed to remain intact as it passed through a target. Its construction consists of a lead core encased in a hardened copper shell (except at the base where the lead is exposed). This design honors the requirements set forth in the Geneva Convention, which sought to wage war in a more ‘humane’ fashion by injuring, not killing the enemy. The reasoning for jacketed bullets was the notion that a hardened bullet (such as CE-399) will pass through the victim, yet remain intact (assuming several factors that do not bear on the issues raised here) thus causing enough damage to take the soldier out of the fight, but not enough kill him or cause undue suffering. By contrast, the ammunition used by today’s law enforcement officers is designed for the opposite purpose; those unhardened bullets are specifically designed to deform quickly and thus expend all of their kinetic energy in the target, thus minimizing the risk of the bullet reemerging and striking innocent bystanders.

With this understanding of CE 399’s design and construction, and given that the average muzzle velocity when fired through the Mannlicher Carcano carbine was on average 2,165 feet per second (f/s),[4] it’s not difficult to conceive of CE-399 penetrating one person, striking no bone, and emerging virtually intact. But could CE-399 withstand the rest of the punishment the SBT requires of it?

As noted, the HSCA could not rely upon physical evidence to argue that CE-399 could do the job because they were unable to find such physical evidence. Therefore, in order to overcome this critical hurdle, the HSCA relied not upon science, experimentation, and physical re-creation, but upon yet another theoretical argument offered up to bear out the validity of the first theoretical argument.

Anyway, on the day of the assassination something rather interesting occurred at Parkland hospital in regards to John Connolly. The bullet which had struck him rather coincidentally and conveniently just fell out of Connolly's thigh, as he was on his stretcher in hospital, and simply fell rather neatly onto the stretcher and was later picked up by hospital orderly Darrel Tomlinson.

Well, it seems as though this was the bullet which struck John Connolly anyway. You see it's quite possible it was not, instead the bullet he found very well could've belonged to someone else, someone not even connected to this case in anyway. Something Tomlinson himself claimed to the WC but they went onto decide he was simply mistaken despite being the one who found the bullet in the first place.

In a drawing he made for the WC Tomlinson highlighted that stretcher A was John Connolly's stretcher, but he's adament he found the bullet on stretcher B.

He claims to have found the bullet when pushing the stretcher back against the wall after someone trying to get into the rest room, which we can see behind stretcher B in the above drawing, pushed it out.

Upon finding the bullet he passed it to his supervisor O. P. Wright who then went onto give it to secret service agent Richard Johnson who then passed it to chief james rowley before finally it ended up in the hands of the FBI who then sent it off for tests

It's possible that the FBI realized that this was not the bullet connected to John Connolly as Tomlinson claimed as the official bullet they went onto present was seemingly rejected by those who handled it such as Johnson and Rowley for example. It seems tests also showed that this bullet upon being tested microscopically showed absolutely no blood of human tissue on it, despite passing through both men remember.

A great video on this part of the case can be found here, this video made by researcher Bob Harris:

It's perhaps also worth noting, which is highlighted in the above video, that John Connolly in his autobiography also made another rather startling claim which goes against what we've been told about the single bullet theory. You see in hospital he does agree that a bullet did fall onto a stretcher that he was on. Although here he claims a nurse picked it up and put it in her pocket, not it was picked up by a hospital orderly. He wasn't even on the stretcher where Tomlinson picked up a bullet it seems.

It was later claimed that these were bullet fragments that were found, which is hard to believe as a nurse would surely know the different between a "bullet" and "bullet fragments." The above video provdes a very interesting interview between Bob Harris and Bobby Nolan in regards to the bullet which was found by the nurse which is worth a listen.

edit on 21-12-2011 by Rising Against because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 11:26 AM
As I come to the end of this thread though I’d like to say thanks for those who actually took the time out to read everything here. Like I said at the beginning, this theory is a fascinating one and It’s key to the investigation and deserves discussion, thus why I’m bringing it up for discussion here and now.

Admittedly I’m more on the side of the disbelievers of this theory, but I’m staying on the fence still, even despite the overwhelming “evidence” against the theory, and when possible I've tried to show both sides of the argument in this thread, as well as giving my own thoughts. That being so we do know at least a conspiracy in some form did occur, particularly in the aftermath of the assassination concerning the movements of the casket and the autopsy and so on, but in regards to the SBT alone, there is still room for debate and speculation.

This theory is but that... a theory. It’s not fact and It’s not been debunked at this stage thus there is room for discussion. In posting this thread I hope and look forward to hearing the opinions of those who find this case and this theory interesting.

Thanks for your time.


posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 11:34 AM
I would like to commend you for such an in depth study on this. The time you have spent gathering your data is impressive to say the least.
Like you, I am still on the fence.

posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 11:43 AM
you never seize to amaze me, again another great thread. Thank you. When I see a new post from you I know its gonna be good. :-)

posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 12:20 PM
reply to post by LDS911

Like you, I am still on the fence.

I think you have to be really, especially when researching the case. If not you'll find yourself believing ridiculous images like this:

Still though, I'm more on the side of the non-believers and I tried to show why in the opening posts of this thread. Out of curiosity why are you "on the fence"? What makes you take up that position as opposed to a believer or non-believe if you don't mind me asking?

posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 02:34 PM
Shameful thread bump.

posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 02:43 PM
Awesome post.

posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 02:51 PM
out standing, where were you when the commission was going on? with what i have seen you have the Info needed to have it reopened, maybe this time the truth would come out.

posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 02:59 PM
reply to post by bekod

out standing, where were you when the commission was going on? with what i have seen you have the Info needed to have it reopened, maybe this time the truth would come out.

Where was I when it was going on? Well, I was born around 28 years after it finished unfortunately, lol. I've just done my fair share of reading into it though I guess.

Oh, and believe it or not the case was re-opened. It was done so in the late 70's in what's known as the HSCA investigation in fact. Here's a link to all their official documents and here's a wikipedia page on the investigation also (which included an investigation into the murder of Martin Luther King and George Wallace). The interesting thing about this particular investigation was they actually concluded that "a probable conspiracy" had taken place. But hey, even so I wouldn't mind going for a third full investigation.

edit on 21-12-2011 by Rising Against because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 04:15 PM
reply to post by hapablab

Hey hapablab, thanks for your kind comment.

Hope you got a chance to read the thread too. I'd love to hear your thoughts.

posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 07:09 PM
Many thanks, RA, I love all the work, the time and effort you've put into researching and writing on the Kennedy assassination. This is what brought me into the world of conspiracy theories after reading Mark Lane's Rush to Judgement in the middle/late 60's as a teenager - one of the very few books I found the time and interest to read in those days. I believe there was a conspiracy involved, before, during, and after the fact. Though I have seen the "Magic Bullet Theory" presented in an almost plausible manner I've never been able to wrap myself around this one at all. Nevertheless, I have seen a pristine bullet.

Around the time of Kennedy's assassination - I'm hazy whether it was shortly before or shortly after the incident but within a year either way - I was visiting family friends with my parents when my dad, his buddy, and I made a trip out to the local dump site to try out the friend's new .45 and plink at a few cans. I was a pre-teen at that time and we were a family of city dwellers so at some point my dad handed me a spent casing to examine. I looked at it and asked about seeing a slug after it had been fired at something. I was told it would be difficult to find one we had already shot in that dump site so we spent the next few minutes firing a couple rounds into a nearby discarded mattress so we could recover a slug to examine.

The very first shot into that mattress sounded like any of the others I heard that day but I saw the slug deflect up about 6-7 feet and land nearby. I was the only one of us to have seen that and the others went to the mattress to recover it, blowing-off what I had told them I saw saying that would not be possible. They probed the hole in that old mattress but could not find the slug and I did not immediately find the one in the area I thought I had seen it land so another shot was taken. This time all was normal and they were able to recover that smashed bullet, and this allowed me time to continue looking for and find the first one.

In a few minutes we both had our prize. My dad and his friend had their bullet which was rather mangled, the copper bent and torn with the lead inside exposed. My bullet was pristine, however. There were very few marks of any sort, barely a bit from the rifling and a scratch on the nose of it from contacting the mattress, and otherwise looked almost like a new slug still retaining its shape and integrity. I showed them my find but they both dismissed it as impossible, after having been fired from that new .45 with all the bang and glory it was not possible to recover a pristine bullet by their estimation. It was suggested someone must have left it there, for some odd reason, but it was right where I had seen it deflect and fall.

I don't buy the WC (good name for that commission, BTW) "Single Bullet Theory", not after the damage it had done, but I had seen a pristine bullet after having been fired and made a hole in that soft mattress. I know such a pristine magic bullet is possible from first-hand witness. The other two witnesses with me that day dismiss it as impossible but I know what I saw. Arlen Specter may actually be correct but I sincerely doubt it. I'm the one that should believe him.

edit on 21-12-2011 by Erongaricuaro because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 07:38 PM
Yet another brilliant thread.

It should be mentioned that the bullet looses massively from its momentum each time it is deflected in direction.

I would expect that a bullet that had turned through 90 degrees would have almost no momentum left.

A simple vector diagram and a few calculations of the losses of momentum would indicate that the single bullet theory, as it stands, is impossible.

posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 08:25 PM
Well RA I've got to say you sure can post. Lot's of great evidence here. I read through the whole thread and I have to say S&F for you ,another fine job.

I watched the z film for what must be the thousandth time. I noticed something that I've never noticed before. When the limo comes out from behind the sign and JFK has his hands to his throat. There is no reaction from Connally other than he starts to turn to look at Jack. Now it seems to me if he had been hit by a bullet his reaction would be somewhat different. I would have to say that this blows the single bullet theory away. Isn't this when the shot was fired that majically went through so many layers of clothing and flesh. It would have to be a 50 cal to have that much energy.

I don't think that ice bullets are even possible. The ignition of the powder would cause the ice to shatter. The trip down the barrel would melt the round. Unless it were made from something other than water.

I've never bought into the single bullet theory. The whitewash commission got it wrong. I have always believed that they found what they were told to find. The JFK conspiracy runs very deep. In fact much deeper than we may ever know.

posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 08:36 PM
reply to post by Erongaricuaro

Hey there.

Thanks for that great, thought-out reply! Those kind's of replies are always appreciated. That's also an interesting story there. Admittedly though, this part of the case, for me anyway, is such a frustrating one to try and understand really. To tell you the truth I know next to nothing about guns, bullets, how they react, and so on. So trying to figure that part of the case is always difficult for me.

For that reason I can't look at the "magic bullet", see how it's barely damaged at all and then think Hmm, this theory is probably not right as surely a bullet would be a bit more damaged than that, because I don't have a clue how a bullet would really react in a situation similar to one in Dealey plaza. All I can do however is rely on the opinions of others, like yourself or look to other parts of the case to show how the bullet would have to have more damage than what we was presented with... such as the Parkland nurse who found "a bullet" which fell from Connolly, this being a separate bullet to the one found by Tomlinson and was later referred to as "Bullet fragments" for example. So If there really was fragments, then we have more damage than we can currently see to CE 399.

I did come across a pretty interesting article in research for this thread as well though, an article which discusses the bullet and how it was designed to do what it did which you might find interesting too. I posted it in the opening posts but I'll post it here too:

CE-399 is a long, stable military round designed to remain intact as it passed through a target. Its construction consists of a lead core encased in a hardened copper shell (except at the base where the lead is exposed). This design honors the requirements set forth in the Geneva Convention, which sought to wage war in a more ‘humane’ fashion by injuring, not killing the enemy. The reasoning for jacketed bullets was the notion that a hardened bullet (such as CE-399) will pass through the victim, yet remain intact (assuming several factors that do not bear on the issues raised here) thus causing enough damage to take the soldier out of the fight, but not enough kill him or cause undue suffering. By contrast, the ammunition used by today’s law enforcement officers is designed for the opposite purpose; those unhardened bullets are specifically designed to deform quickly and thus expend all of their kinetic energy in the target, thus minimizing the risk of the bullet reemerging and striking innocent bystanders.

With this understanding of CE 399’s design and construction, and given that the average muzzle velocity when fired through the Mannlicher Carcano carbine was on average 2,165 feet per second (f/s),[4] it’s not difficult to conceive of CE-399 penetrating one person, striking no bone, and emerging virtually intact. But could CE-399 withstand the rest of the punishment the SBT requires of it?

But whether the damage the bullet is claimed to have caused is possible or not, I simply don't know. Some say yes, some say no. All I know is it seems unlikely to me, which is a non-expert opinion.

Anyway I'll probably reply more to this thread tomorrow, for now though It's very late. Thank you to those who have taken time out to reply thus far.

edit on 21-12-2011 by Rising Against because: Added a link.

posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 08:40 PM
The amount of research you have done is OUTSTANDING. My high school physics teacher is who turned me on to the idea of conspiracies.
We were studying trajectory and we all got permission to watch the assassination. What we didn't get permission for was to watch his video he made about the magic bullet. While I was completely HORRIFIED to watch the the assassination at age 17, I was mesmerized by my teacher's presentation. That catapulted my out of the box thinking and I have been grabbing any information available that's out there about the Kennedy assassination.
10 years later and it's still as puzzling as it was when I first started reading about it. There are SO MANY theories. So many you said..could have started long before, shortly before, or after. So many unanswered questions. A great mystery that is for sure.
Thank you for your great post.

posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 09:49 PM
reply to post by Rising Against

After I had joined the Army there was talk about our M-16's and stories of the bullets deflecting off a blade of grass. Though I lucked-in just in time to never see combat in Vietnam our time spent on the firing ranges would make that blade of grass story seem highly improbable yet, as mentioned previously, I had seen a .45 deflect in similar manner and that memory always stayed with me. As highly unlikely as it seems I have to say it is possible. For some reason though, throughout my life I have seen some very unlikely events play out so I am not a good skeptic nor am I a hardcore believer that things will always do as they are expected. My concept of reality is, therefore, somewhat pliable.

That pristine bullet in Kennedy's shooting, as highly improbable as it seems, is quite possible and I know it. That does not mean I believe a word of the official story though. I have no idea about high-velocity physics and what could make that possible as it seems that much force would have unstoppable penetrating power when acting on soft surfaces, yet I know it isn't always so. What are the odds of this kind of thing happening? It may not be 1 in a million but having not witnessed anything like this on the firing ranges or at any other time than at that dump when I was about ten years-old I would have to guess it is a much longer shot that 1 in a thousand. Surely if Arlen Specter would suggest such a scenario it is not entirely unheard of that this does occur once in a great while. I am not a great firearms enthusiast to have had an opportunity to witness more than once - though if I ever face meeting a speeding bullet I hope to see it occur again at least another time. I would be very curious to hear from some actual ATS gun enthusiasts about their experience with deflected and pristine bullets.

edit on 21-12-2011 by Erongaricuaro because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 10:21 PM

If all of this is true then taking into consideration all of the wounds sustained by both men this one single bullet fired from a 6.5mm Carcano Rifle passed through approximately "15 layers of clothing, 7 layers of skin, and approximately 15 inches of tissue, struck a necktie knot, removed 4 inches of rib, and shattered a radius bone" - This is where the doubt for many people come in I would assume. After all it does seem unlikely at least

This has always troubled me as well. Perhaps because I am not a ballistics expert, either, nor am I an expert on bone structure.

For arguments sake, let's assume the "magic bullet theory" is spot on. With this we assume this bullet made all these crazy turns, presumably from striking bone, only to come out in the same condition in which it started its journey.

What troubles me is how does a second similar bullet coming from the same gun not pass through the head and strike either Connelly, his wife, or even the partition in front of them. (I remember some discussion of the partition in one of your other threads, but apologize, I don't remember if there was actually glass in it, or if it was open)

This is just another one of those "theories" that have never really made sense to me.

I often wonder if all these strange "facts" surrounding the JFK assissination weren't created to just confuse people. It's almost like they purposely distorted things in order to create a multitude of conspiracies in order to hide the real conspiracy.

No better way to camoflage a conspiracy, than with a bunch of false conspiracies.

Great read as always RA

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