RESOLVED: President Kennedy was killed as the result of a
[Final portion of my transcription of a radio debate which took
place in the Fall of 1993 between Peter Dale Scott and Gerald
Posner. Today, Mr. Posner gives his closing statement.]
MODERATOR: Thank you, Mr. Scott. Mr. Posner, you have 6 minutes.
GERALD POSNER: The last statement Mr. Scott makes is one that,
uh, one of the few things tonight that we can agree on and agree
on wholeheartedly, which is, getting the files.
I happen to think that one of the things that's happened in this
case is the government is its own worst enemy. They're holding
onto material for 30 years, in instances, because there *is* a
cover-up in the Kennedy assassination. I say this in so many
words in my book. There's a cover-up of the government
incompetence that took place in both the FBI and the CIA. There's
a covering of *behinds*, in essence, of these bureaucrats who are
running for cover. And the FBI, because they were so petrified
that J. Edgar Hoover would be coming down to Dallas and saying,
"What? You had an open file on Lee Harvey Oswald? You were
interrogating his wife and you didn't know he was a 'lone nut'
capable of killing the President?" And of course, Hoover *did*
censure 17 agents and discipline them for that very thing that
the agents feared. They destroyed evidence. They lied about what
happened. And that's what, largely, those files are gonna show.
They will show the *extent* of that cover-up. The difference is
in the interpretation that we have as to whether, in fact, it was
the cover-up of a *murder* (which I don't view it as that), or
what I typically view in this case, from the... my alma mater
where you are now a professor, at Berkeley, from my work in the
early '70s as a political scientist, that, in fact, government is
primarily inefficient and bungling. And this is exactly what you
expect in a case of this magnitude, where people *do* run.
The... some of the things that are mentioned... I think it comes
down again to this very, very fundamental look at "What is the
evidence?" And I think that Mr. Scott says 2 things in his last 6
minutes segment that really shows you the basis of what happens
in conspiracy theory. If there isn't an answer for it, what you
do is you speculate and say, "Here's what might have happened."
And this is what Oliver Stone does very effectively in his film,
On the Walker shooting, Mr. Scott says, "Well I think that the
bullet was swapped. It's not the same bullet that existed in
'63." The problem is that there's no evidence that it was
swapped. So his point is, what *might* have been swapped. We
can't prove that it wasn't. And of course, you can never prove
that... the negative, that the bullet wasn't swapped. But what I
ask for always, as an investigator, as an attorney, is -- just
show me a piece of credible evidence to indicate that that
happened. And that's what, what he can't produce.
He talks about the Tippit shooting. And he says that he thinks
that the police actually botched the planting of the bullets at
the scene. But again: it's strictly speculation. There isn't any
evidence. There's no testimony. There's nothing to indicate that
in fact the police had *planted* the bullets at the scene. And
this is where we go from hard evidence off to what I call
speculation. The Tippit case is a perfect example.
And I must tell you that, as an attorney, it's one of the most
"open and shut" cases I've ever seen. *Thirteen* eyewitnesses --
not just the two that he wants to talk about with Helen Markum(?)
and Warren Reynolds (and each of those I could respond to) --
thirteen eyewitnesses see Oswald either do the shooting [of
Tippit] or escaping from the scene. Six people pick him out of a
lineup that night. He's discovered a few blocks away, with the
pistol. It is tied ballistically into the murder of Tippit, to
the exclusion of any other gun in the world. How he ends up in
*that* theater, with the pistol that just killed Tippit, where 13
people just saw him running away, is hard for me to imagine. Is
it an imposter Oswald? Has somebody coerced all 13 people? Did
they put the pistol on him and he didn't know it? You know, the
answer is, in fact (although I see Mr. Scott nodding "yes"),
it's too much to imagine. He, in fact, *did* kill J.D. Tippit.
He, in fact, *did* shoot at General Walker. And he *was* the only
person in Dallas, November 22nd, 1963, on the 6th floor, in the
southeast corner of the Texas school book depository -- not only
with the motive to kill Jack Kennedy (to place himself in the
history books; to throw this "monkey wrench" into the system) but
with the capability of doing it. With his *own* rifle which was
found up there. That he used to sit on a porch, according to
Marina, and for hours at a time practice "dry runs," what experts
call "dry runs." Operating the bolt action so that he was
proficient with it. *And* with the capability. In the marines,
having been both a sharpshooter and a marksman. Meaning that he
was capable of hitting a 10-inch target at a distance of 200
yards, 8 times out of 10, without the benefit of a telescopic
And in Dallas, the assassination targets are less than *half* of
that distance. His longest shot is some 90 yards, and he has the
benefit of a 4-power scope. It becomes for Oswald an easy
sequence of shots. And even then, only one of them actually does
the trick and ends up killing Kennedy.
The... One of the very important points, I think, in this, is
when we come down to the question of association with these
individuals, uh, I believe that as the American people have a
right to demand, after 30 years of looking at this case, we have
a right to demand of anybody, "What's your evidence to support
your conclusions?" I lay out a scenario of what I think happened
in the assassination. I presented the evidence: some 80 pages of
source notes, the evidence that I rely on. What I think we have
to ask conspiracy theorists in this case -- whether they have Mr.
Scott's view or whether they have a different view of what
happened -- is, "What do you rely on?" "What's your proof?"
"What's your documentation?" This case has been examined more
extensively, by more researchers, than any other case I know of.
And after 30 years of thousands of people looking at the evidence
and talking to witnesses, we still don't have an iota of credible
evidence to show us, in fact, there was a conspiracy to kill Jack
Kennedy. I say that it's time to "close the book" on this case in
the sense that we still have more *historical* work to do, but we
can come to the overall conclusion that, in Dallas, as we
approach the 30th anniversary of this death, the man responsible
for it was one man, alone: Lee Harvey Oswald.
MODERATOR: Thank you, Mr. Posner.
Mr. Scott, Mr. Posner, on behalf of our listeners across the
country, thank you very much.
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CN Editor -- At various times in this transcription of the
Scott/Posner debate, I was tempted to interject my own comments.
However, I tried to avoid doing this as much as possible.
At this point, I am tempted to write my own commentary on this
debate and post it in a future issue. I may or may not do so. If
I do, I may include any comments, info, etc. that I receive from
readers regarding the Scott/Posner debate. If you have any
material, pro or con, that you wish to send regarding this
debate, now is the time to send it.