(PART 568)


Hey DVP, you realize that [Robert] Knudsen and [Joe] O'Donnell...independently corroborated each other when they told the HSCA and ARRB...of 2 back-of-the-head photographs--one with the big hole as seen by everyone from the Parkland medical staff to Mortician Tom Robinson, another apparently the same picture but doctored to conceal the gaping wound. So, for no logical reason they both decided to concoct this story?


Ol' Laz needs a copy of "Reclaiming History" (badly).

"RH" fully explains the various accounts of people supposedly seeing things in autopsy photographs that all sensible people know beyond all reasonable doubt they could have NEVER seen.

And a big reason we can know that nobody could have possibly seen any great-big hole in the back of JFK's head is due to the stereoscopic technique that was used when the HSCA's Photographic Panel examined the photos.

The stereoscopic findings verify the fact that ANY photos that may have been seen by people like Robert Knudsen, Joe O'Donnell, and Saundra Spencer could not POSSIBLY have depicted something COMPLETELY DIFFERENT from the autopsy photos that are in existence for the public to look at today.

Here are some pertinent excerpts from Vincent Bugliosi's JFK book (which, naturally, will be completely ignored and/or brushed aside by all conspiracy-happy idiots):

"The single most important discovery, and one that establishes with ABSOLUTE AND IRREFUTABLE CERTAINTY that the autopsy photographs have not been altered, is the fact that many of the photographs, when combined in pairs, produce stereoscopic images.


The only way a forger can successfully alter a detailed stereoscopic image...without detection is to alter both images IDENTICALLY, which is, [photographic expert and HSCA panel member Frank] Scott said, "essentially impossible."


The entire photographic panel of the HSCA concluded that "the autopsy photographs and X-rays were taken of President Kennedy at the time of his autopsy and that they had not been altered in any manner." This fact alone demolishes the conspiracy theorists' allegations that photographic fakery was used to conceal the plot to kill the president.

It also destroys another prime conspiracy belief--that the eyewitness descriptions of the president's wounds that were offered by the Parkland Hospital doctors (and later by some eyewitnesses to the autopsy) are proof that the autopsy photographs had been altered.

Obviously, if the autopsy photographs are genuine and unaltered (which all the experts agree), then eyewitness descriptions of the president's wounds that contradict those photographs are not proof of alteration, as some critics claim, but nothing more than examples of understandable, mistaken recollections, or if not that, then deliberate and outright falsehoods.


Yet conspiracy theorists continue to tie themselves in knots trying to convince their converts not to give up the ship and go home. In the years since the HSCA’s 1978 investigation, critics have been reduced to claiming that the autopsy photographs and X-rays have “somehow” been tampered with. .... That specific “somehow,” of course, is never explained.

One critic, Harrison Edward Livingstone, in his ironically titled book 'Killing the Truth', simply closes his eyes and pretends the HSCA accomplished nothing, proposing (without a drop of evidence) that the HSCA photographic panel “overlooked various matters and was seriously flawed in its [authentication] work. There was nothing ‘scientific’ about their examination” (Livingstone, Killing the Truth, p.74).

Livingstone claims, on one hand, that researchers have not been granted access to the relevant pairs of autopsy photographs that produce stereoscopic images in order to check the integrity of the images (“We are expected to take this on faith,” he writes), yet in the very next sentence admits that two autopsy photographs published in his book 'High Treason 2' “can produce a stereoscopic view” (Livingstone, Killing the Truth, p.74).

In fact, as Livingstone should know, all of the key autopsy photographs that show the president’s wounds, copies of which have been published in bootlegged form in a variety of conspiracy books (including Livingstone’s), produce stereoscopic images.


[Regarding the tale of Saundra Kay Spencer:]

But assuming, for the sake of argument, that Spencer’s testimony is accurate and the photos she saw of the president’s head were taken after the cosmetic surgery that the embalmers did to reconstruct the president’s head following the autopsy (1 HSCA 330–331), so what? What possible sinister inference can possibly be drawn therefrom?

Assuming there was this “second” set of autopsy photos showing the president cleaned up, how could this change the condition of the president’s head as witnessed by the three autopsy surgeons and as shown by the only photos that count—the first set of photos of the president that everyone else (Chief Justice Warren, the HSCA forensic pathology panel, illustrator Ida Dox, the Clark Panel, etc.) saw depicting his fatal wounds before the second set was taken?

When one recognizes this reality about Spencer’s testimony, one can only conclude that her recollections after thirty-four years were either very faulty, or correct but of absolutely no significance.


There is little reason to place importance in these kinds of accounts of a few allegedly missing or altered photographs. Why? Because they can’t possibly show something that contradicts what is depicted in the many photographs that DO exist and are available.

More importantly, as I’ve stated frequently, the photographic experts of the HSCA unanimously agreed that the existing photographs (and accompanying X-rays) were authentic and depicted the president’s body as it was on the night of the autopsy. And they prove beyond ANY DOUBT that the president was shot from ABOVE AND BEHIND. Consequently, any missing or “altered” photographs CANNOT show something else, as the conspiracy theorists claim."
-- Vincent Bugliosi; Via various endnotes in "Reclaiming History" (c.2007)

David Von Pein
May 31, 2009