JOHN KING SAID:
That this many witnesses were merely "mistaken" all in the same way is most definitely not plausible. I will once again make the most potent statement of all regarding why rejecting these witnesses cannot be considered in any reasonable assessment of this issue, and I would like you to comment on this statement very specifically, please, if you post any reply at all to this article, that this statement be given high priority:
The average ten-year-old child, without a day of medical training, will know which part of a person's head is the "back" or "rear" of the head, without the slightest possibility of being even slightly mistaken. David, is this statement true or false?
You do realize that if you were to say "false" that most people would find that to be quite an astonishing answer, correct?
Now let's try it in a slightly different form:
The average person, without a day of medical training, will know which part of a person's head is the "back" or "rear" of the head, without the slightest possibility of being even slightly mistaken. True or false?
Rather obviously, an answer of "false" given in seriousness by an adult would naturally elicit a reaction of amazement among most other adults present, and from many older children as well. Correct?
DAVID VON PEIN SAID:
True. True. And correct.
But my theory about the Parkland witnesses has NEVER been that any of them somehow mislabelled the area of JFK's head where they said they saw the wound. I have a feeling that you still think I'm in the "Jim Moore camp" with respect to this issue. But I'm certainly not.
But have you read Jim Moore's theory on this? He thinks all the Parkland witnesses DID mis-identify the part of JFK's head that contained the large exit wound, simply because Kennedy was lying on his back in the emergency room.
Here's what Moore said in his book:
"The explanation for this [head wound] discrepancy is so simple few will subscribe to it. The Parkland doctors all saw President Kennedy in only one position--face up. An exit wound across his forehead might have been labeled 'at the front of the skull', but a wound on the right side? Doctors would have seen the missing area 'at the rear of the skull', of course." -- Jim Moore; Page 180 of "Conspiracy Of One"
And, incredibly, even Vincent Bugliosi (in "Reclaiming History") gives partial credence to Moore's absurd theory that I just quoted above.
But I hope that you don't think that I myself subscribe to Jim Moore's theory about the Parkland witnesses, because I do not. And I blasted Moore's theory quite vigorously in my review of his book, here:
But the explanation of the blood, brain, and gore "pooling" to the right-rear part of JFK's head at Parkland DOES make a good deal of sense to me -- particularly since we know (via the Zapruder Film footage alone) that the large exit wound for Lee Harvey Oswald's bullet WAS, indeed, on the RIGHT side of the President's head. It is therefore quite logical, in my opinion, to believe that the Parkland personnel would have seen a large amount of blood and tissue collecting (or "pooling") at the RIGHT-REAR-OCCIPITAL area of President Kennedy's head in Trauma Room 1.
And I think this "pooling" theory is still valid (and on the table for serious consideration) even when we consider the fact that Jacqueline Kennedy had most likely "closed up" the flap of skull/scalp prior to JFK arriving at Parkland. (In fact, the "Jackie Closed Up The Wound" theory makes the "pooling blood" theory even MORE valid, in my view. See the end of this post for the reason why I say that.)
Jackie might have "closed" up the flap, but she certainly wasn't capable of stopping the blood from flowing from the margins of that wound she had closed up. So a lot of blood is still coming from that wound on the RIGHT side of his head. And we know that JFK's heart WAS still beating, and pumping some blood through his veins, for several minutes after he was wheeled into Trauma Room 1.
And with JFK lying flat on his back (face up) on the stretcher, the blood coming from his right-frontal head wound would have had nowhere else to go but toward the RIGHT-REAR-OCCIPITAL portion of his head (since we know that gravity was still in effect on 11/22/63 at Parkland Memorial Hospital).
I assume you think that both Michael Baden of the HSCA's Forensic Pathology Panel AND author Vincent Bugliosi of "Reclaiming History" fame are BOTH totally out of their minds for believing in the "pooling" theory I just outlined, correct? Because here is what Mr. Bugliosi and Dr. Baden had to say on this issue:
"Dr. Michael Baden has what I [Vince Bugliosi] believe to be the answer, one whose logic is solid. [Quoting Baden] "The head exit wound was not in the parietal-occipital area, as the Parkland doctors said. They were wrong," [Baden] told me. "That's why we have autopsies, photographs, and X-rays to determine things like this. Since the thick growth of hair on Kennedy's head hadn't been shaved at Parkland, there's no way for the doctors to have seen the margins of the wound in the skin of the scalp. All they saw was blood and brain tissue adhering to the hair. And that may have been mostly in the occipital area because he was lying on his back and gravity would push his hair, blood, and brain tissue backward, so many of them probably assumed the exit wound was in the back of the head. But clearly, from the autopsy X-rays and photographs and the observations of the autopsy surgeons, the exit wound and defect was not in the occipital area. There was no defect or wound to the rear of Kennedy's head other than the entrance wound in the upper right part of his head." [End Baden quote]." -- Pages 407-408 of "Reclaiming History" (c.2007)
As I stated in an earlier post, you could possibly be correct about your theory concerning the "hinged" skull at the (mostly) top of JFK's head springing "open" while he was lying on his back at Parkland Hospital. I fully admit it: You could be correct. But I certainly think that the "pooling" theory could very well be the correct answer to this 48-year-old mystery about the Parkland doctors too (but not necessarily the answer to why some of the BETHESDA witnesses said they saw the same "occipital" wound in Kennedy's head at the autopsy).
But your theory needs the hinged skull flap to MASQUERADE AS AN OCCIPITAL WOUND for several minutes at Parkland Hospital on November 22, 1963.
Can the top-of-the-head "hinged flap" actually make its way to the OCCIPITAL part of President Kennedy's head, in order to fool many witnesses into thinking that a large HOLE was really residing in the right-rear-occipital part of Kennedy's head? I'm not so sure it can. (But, maybe you are correct, and maybe that flap COULD have seemed to be a large hole in the occipital to several witnesses. But I'm still a bit dubious about that.)
Is there any verification in the existing literature or doctors' testimony that would indicate for certain that the fractured top portion of JFK's head was, in fact, in such a condition that it could conceivably have "sprung open" like a hinge on a door?
There might very well be testimony of that nature in Humes', Finck's, or Boswell's various testimony sessions over the years, but right now I cannot specifically recall such testimony.
In other words, are we just GUESSING about whether it's even POSSIBLE for the top part of JFK's damaged skull to have behaved in the "swinging door"-like method which your theory certainly requires?
Also: Even if the "door hinge" theory is correct, how can we be certain WHICH DIRECTION the skull flap would have "swung"? I can't really tell from the X-ray below where any such "hinge" would be attached. Can you?....
What I mean is: If there is anything at all that still attached the FRONTAL MOST (nearest Kennedy's face) portion of that top-of-the-head skull/scalp piece to JFK's head, then such an attachment, of course, would negate your "hinged door" theory altogether, because there's no way (via those conditions) that the top skull flap could have been flopping around on his head to begin with.
Plus: Your theory most definitely requires the top skull flap to somehow seem to be a major deficit (a hole) in a specific part of JFK's head to many of the Parkland witnesses -- i.e., the OCCIPITAL area of the head (although, yes, some of the witnesses place the wound a little higher and more "central" on the back of the head).
So, it seems to me that your theory requires the top-of-the-head "flap" or "hinge" to somehow ADHERE itself to the right-rear (occipital) part of JFK's cranium. And I just don't see how that flap can do that.
But in the "pooling blood" theory, the right-rear-occipital part of Mr. Kennedy's head would most CERTAINLY be the portion of his head where the blood/brain/tissue/whatever would definitely have been heading straight toward (or "pooling" at).
And I would think that such streaming blood would have a tendency to STICK or ADHERE to the occipital area of the head too, as it followed the natural curved contour and shape of JFK's head.
Whereas, via your theory, you've got a hanging piece of skull bone flapping around that wouldn't have ADHERED itself to any particular one spot on the President's head.
So, while I do think you've raised some good points about the "hinged flap" theory, I think your theory is still a bit weak in some areas.
And here's another weak area (that I don't think you addressed in your previous posts):
What about the "cerebellum" comments made by some of the Parkland witnesses?
You surely aren't suggesting that there really WAS a large-sized (or even small) "hole" in the "occipital" area of JFK's head--are you?
Your "hinged flap" is located at the top of the head (and, yes, it certainly extends toward the BACK of the head too--I admit that fact). But it certainly is a long way from the "occipital" bone.
So I'm wondering how the doctors at Parkland could be correct when some of them said they saw "cerebellum" oozing from the wound in the back of Mr. Kennedy's head? Dr. Paul Peters and Dr. Pepper Jenkins have, of course, totally reversed themselves on this "cerebellum" topic. In 1988 on PBS-TV, they each said that it wasn't cerebellum they saw, and that they must have been mistaken about that issue.
Of course, I must also say, that I really don't put very much faith in what ANY of those doctors had to say during that NOVA PBS special in 1988. Because their comments about the wounds in that program are totally crazy and contradictory to their 1963 observations, IMO. Here's why.
JOHN KING SAID:
You still seem to be misunderstanding exactly where this piece of bone is in the skull, and thus where the Parkland "hole" in the upper right posterior of the head was.
DAVID VON PEIN SAID:
So, right there, you're admitting that several Parkland people did get it wrong. You're claiming that the "hole" that was seen at Parkland was in the "upper right posterior" portion of JFK's head. But "upper right" does not match the "occipital". Occipital is very low on the head:
So, some (or even many) witnesses must certainly have been wrong, even via your theory. Or have I totally misunderstood you (again)?
JOHN KING SAID:
Ok, once again, I ask you one of the most important questions of all. Please do not reply to my article without answering this very specifically. It is crucial that you answer this, because without this answer you cannot present a plausible argument:
IF THE HOLE IN HIS HEAD WASN'T WHERE THEY SAID IT WAS, THEN WHERE ON HIS HEAD WAS THE HOLE THEY SAW?
Unless you're going to dismiss these witnesses even further and claim that not only were they mistaken about where the hole was, they were mistaken about there being ANY hole (in which case I'll never take you seriously again), you realize that you or anyone else doubting what they said absolutely MUST answer this question plausibly to produce an even remotely plausible argument.
DAVID VON PEIN SAID:
Well, since there is absolutely no doubt whatsoever (via the best evidence in the case, which is the autopsy photos and X-rays, plus the autopsy report and the testimony of Humes, Boswell, and Finck) that the major wound of exit in President John F. Kennedy's head was NOT in the "occipital" (right-rear) region of his head, there's no way that I can legitimately think that the majority of Parkland witnesses REALLY DID see a wound in the occipital area of his head.
And, yes, I realize that Humes' autopsy report does say that the large wound in JFK's head extended "somewhat" into the "occipital" region of his head. But that "somewhat" is a far cry from placing the major portion of that wound in a place where virtually everyone at Parkland placed it.
Via your "hinged flap" theory, I would think that more people at Parkland would have placed the wound nearer the TOP of JFK's head, vs. the BACK of the head. (But maybe I'm "misunderstanding" things again.) :-)
This leaves the REAL wound of exit in Mr. Kennedy's head for the Parkland witnesses to ACTUALLY see, quite obviously.
But, since I've already stated that it's my belief that it is highly likely that the REAL wound of exit (or at least the major portion of that wound) in the right-front of the head was "closed up" by Jackie Kennedy during the high-speed drive to Parkland Hospital, I'm going to actually have to suggest to you a theory that is probably going to cause you to lose all respect for me entirely and, hence, you will never take me seriously again (as you just said):
I'm going to suggest to you, via the previously discussed "pooling" theory, that the Parkland witnesses actually saw NO PART of the major exit wound that existed in John F. Kennedy's head on 11/22/63.
I had never really thought about this issue from this particular point-of-view prior to today, but that theory I just laid on the table is also almost CERTAINLY the exact theory that people like Dr. Michael Baden and Vincent Bugliosi must believe as well.
Otherwise, we would have Baden and Bugliosi "pulling a Jim Moore" on us and suggesting that the Parkland witnesses actually DID see the one and only large right-frontal wound in John Kennedy's head, but (somehow) they all became disoriented as to the real location of that wound, due to Kennedy's supine posture while in the emergency room.
But Baden and Bugliosi are NOT suggesting such a ludicrous thing at all. Instead, they are saying what I have said in the past as well -- that the Parkland people DID know JFK's "front" from his "back", but they interpreted a lot of blood and brain tissue adhering to the right-rear of Kennedy's head as being an actual/physical WOUND residing in the location of all that blood and tissue.
But since we know that a large wound was NOT located in that right-rear-occipital area (and Baden and Bugliosi don't think ANY sort of wound resided in that location either), this must, therefore, indicate that both Baden and Bugliosi must legitimately believe that most of the Parkland witnesses saw NO REAL WOUND in President Kennedy's head.
And, stopping to think about this scenario a tad longer, that theory of the Parkland people seeing no large wound at all DOES make some sense indeed, due to the fact that Jackie Kennedy, in effect, CONCEALED that large exit wound from the view of the Parkland witnesses before JFK's limousine reached the hospital. So, what "real" wound WOULD there have been to see at Parkland under these conditions (and via the "pooling blood" theory I've spoken of)?
But we must also realize that the Parkland people were not there to perform an autopsy on President Kennedy's body. They were there to try and save his life if they could. They did not closely inspect or examine ANY of the President's wounds. Nor was it their job to do any such extensive examination. Once the President was pronounced dead, Trauma Room 1 cleared out quickly, and very few people even saw the President's body after that point at Parkland.
So, while it might be hard to believe that the massive wound in JFK's head could go completely unnoticed by many, many trained doctors and nurses at a major U.S. hospital, given the circumstances and conditions outlined above concerning Mrs. Kennedy's probable handling of her husband's head before the car got to Parkland (and even you, yourself, say that you believe it's true that Jackie most certainly DID close up the open flaps on JFK's head), such a theory about the Parkland personnel not being able to see any of the actual wounds in the President's head seems quite possible and palatable, in my opinion.
JOHN KING SAID:
Where do you think on JFK's head the hole was that they saw? Do you see any hole in his head in that...autopsy photo with him laying on his back? I sure don't. And in that photo the area where they said there WAS a hole is completely covered by his hair.
DAVID VON PEIN SAID:
You have just confirmed the point I made above.
You just admitted (inadvertently) that a situation could, indeed, exist whereby the head of President Kennedy (after he had been shot) could appear to a witness to have NO HOLES IN IT WHATSOEVER (via the autopsy picture you mentioned).
So, via the "pooling blood" theory that I still maintain is likely the correct theory (even though I cannot reconcile that theory with ALL of the Parkland/Bethesda witnesses, and probably will never be able to do that), why would it be considered so outlandish to postulate that the Parkland witnesses saw the President's body in approximately the same condition in which it appears in this autopsy photo?:
Hence, those Parkland witnesses could have seen NO HOLES in his head, and erroneously thought the pooling blood/brain at the right-rear was the only physical "hole" in his head.
David Von Pein
July 17, 2011