One less familiar resource on the JFK assassination is the EC Dorsch manuscript book. Never published so far as we know, the website that hosted it is now defunct. So, we’re hosting a pdf of the work here at least temporarily until a new source can be located, and are sharing a couple of brief extracts. The book is well worth reading, even without the linked material, as it painstakingly explores the witness testimony and physical evidence. You don’t have to agree with all of the conclusions to appreciate the analysis.
Download PDF here
Extract: WHY DO WE NEED TO KNOW?
Among the first thing I discovered while doing my research was that most of those people who believe in the official stance have not read, and most do not care to read, the evidence and testimony which should justify the conclusions stated by the federal studies. Most have blindly decided that the conclusions are correct, that the information used to arrive at them is true and accurate, and it also backs those conclusions. This is, I feel, the major error that anyone who believes in the lone gunman scenario makes…not “testing” the conclusion by comparing it to the evidence and testimony. The possibility that either report’s conclusions might not be totally in line with the evidence and testimony is something they simply will not consider…and, it leads to having no ability to comprehend how shallow the actual “case” against Oswald was. Until 1990, I was a member, in good standing, of this group.
In fact, as unbelievable as it may seem, I have engaged in debates with numerous WC defenders and have been told such things as:
“Who cares what the evidence was? Oswald did it”
“I don’t need to look at anything. I know he did it.”
“Oswald did it, regardless of what the evidence says, and I’ll never be convinced otherwise.”
This kind of blindness was expected by the Warren Commission, as is evidenced by the transcripts of their executive sessions where a number of the Commission members openly discussed the probability that few would ever read the hearings evidence and most would rely, solely, on the Warren Commission Report (WCR) and its supporting documentation. Some might say that they depended upon this blindness; since it seems that they worried very little about whether or not the evidence in the twenty-six volumes of testimony and exhibits actually supported their conclusions. It also appears that some of the Commissioners felt that only a few academicians would ever really look at the evidence.
They were wrong. Many Americans, spurred on by those concerned citizens whose views initially conflicted with the WCR findings, have since looked into the supporting data. Almost all have come away feeling that the real evidence contained in those twenty-six volumes bolsters an entirely different set of conclusions than those stated in the report. The critics also believe that the Warren Commission’s conclusions were predetermined. There is quite a bit of documentation to indicate that this too, is true. Take, for example, the internal memo of January 13, 1964, from J. Lee Rankin, Warren Commission general counsel, to the staff of the Commission. This memo is very difficult to reconcile, especially this early in the “investigation”, less than 45 days from its creation, if you believe that the Commission’s actual intention was to conduct a broad-scope, honest inquiry into what took place in Dallas, the weekend of November 22-24, 1963. In his memo, Rankin, the actual head of the investigation team, states that, due to the physical evidence from the ballistics reports and the autopsy, the Warren Commission investigation and report would be centered on Oswald only.
Is this the way to properly “investigate”?
Because of this attitude, many feel that the basic reasoning behind the WCR conclusions was fatally flawed from the outset. They feel that the WC started at the conclusion, then picked, or in some cases invented, the scenarios and evidence required to confirm it. They then re-arrived at the already formulated conclusion, believing that their justification was sound. A classic case of circular reasoning. Another of the major problems fueling the controversy is that both of the government panels, and unfortunately, a great many conspiracy believers, rely only on those bits of evidence that support their positions. They all ignore the basic scientific format of using the total evidence to reach a conclusion.
The Warren Commission, because of the lack of a comprehensive “let’s see where this leads us” approach, only used the information that backed their pre-ordained theory. Anything that was uncovered and didn’t fit was arbitrarily considered to be either incorrect, irrelevant or in error, despite how credible that evidence or testimony might have been. In some cases, that which did not ￼agree was simply ignored. The possibility that this “Oswald alone” approach was the only one taken by the Warren Commission because of some dark intrigue has been speculated about for many years. It is very difficult to not feel that something was wrong.
Even many of those who later worked on the HSCA were shocked when they began to look seriously at the evidence in the Warren Commission Hearings and Exhibits (WCH). Leslie Wizelman, a Cornell University law student who accompanied law professor G. Robert Blakey when he took over as general counsel for the HSCA investigation, wrote an internal memo to him within four months of beginning her HSCA assignment that included the following:
I find myself greatly frustrated about my role on this committee. I will have very serious difficulties writing a report that concludes the Warren Commission was right. I simply do not believe it. It appears that certain theories have been developed and conclusions have been established. It would be interesting to have someone…tell us upon what they are based. In addition, it would be very interesting to know if we (my emphasis) are going to actively investigate the Kennedy assassination.”
Wizelman, young, enthusiastic and idealistic, had been assigned to review the legendary 26 volumes and write a report. It becomes easy to assume what that report was supposed to say and what her feelings were about it. We know what the findings of the HSCA were: Oswald was the assassin, just as the WCR said.
Interestingly, the HSCA would not or could not satisfactorily resolve the issue, despite their new investigation, which contained the first in-depth review of the autopsy, including the highly controversial photographs and x-rays, never previously seen in public. A number of those who took part in the HSCA investigation have since complained about what was really done and most Warren Commission critics have steadfastly challenged most of those conclusions also. The HSCA findings did however force a great many WCR supporters to “redefine” their previous positions about the quality of the autopsy.
How can the beliefs of the people and the conclusions of the government studies be so divergent when they both see the same evidence and testimony? How can it be possible that both of these government studies are wrong? Why do the bulk of the American people believe that they have been lied to about this affair? That is also relatively simple to explain.
Most of those conspiracy theorists who have looked at the evidence feel quite strongly that so much of it is so blatantly questionable that it defies all logic to believe in it or the conclusions drawn from it. They don’t attempt to challenge the accepted conclusions by impeaching just a single part of the case; they show reasons to impeach all of it. Many times there are several reasons per item of evidence. They feel, beyond doubt, that the evidence was concocted, in its entirety, just to frame LHO.
Conspiracy books touch on many different reasons to believe in a connivance. The problem with this has always been that so many theories of what happened exist, it is very difficult to put all the pieces together in such a way so that they fit, and you can feel comfortable with the conclusion, in the light of the total evidence. I do not know of any researcher who has tried to account for all the evidence in his or her theory. Most omit any piece of evidence that is in conflict with their beliefs, not unlike the two government studies that they so often and so antagonistically, criticize. Such actions leave them just as vulnerable to criticism. These actions also undermine the validity of conspiracy claims.
The WC supporters on the other hand, backed by the conclusions and the supporting documentation of the Report, keep trying to make the conspiracy advocates take the existing evidence and make it point to anyone else. They can’t, because it doesn’t. The physical evidence documented in the WCR does point only to Oswald. The critics have never questioned that; what is questioned is the evidence itself, and the whether or not it is real. Those who support the WCR, either ignore that
￼possibility, or show that they do not understand the depth of it. They do this by defending only a few of the questionable parts of the evidence, and failing to see the implications of the fact that almost all of it has been impeached. This is not necessarily sinister; it is just a sign that they simply cannot believe that the federal government could, and would, lie about what it found. They also cannot believe that a conspiracy of this magnitude could have happened, regardless of the questions about the evidence. Thus, the continuing impasse.
How can you, once and for all, determine if a conspiracy did exist and therefore, must still exist now, to hide the true facts of the assassination and the successful efforts, by obviously powerful people, to eliminate the elected head of the United States and blame the event on a “lone nut”? The best way to establish the true picture in this controversy is for each citizen to examine all the evidence, in its entirety, and come to his/her own conclusion. This is the approach I recommend to anyone who is deeply interested in finding the truth about this sordid episode of American history.
It is far from an easy task and your quest for the answers will be a monumental undertaking.
First, finding copies of the Warren Commission Report and the twenty-six volumes of testimony and exhibits is very difficult. Both are necessary since you must determine if the conclusions in the Report match the evidence and testimony gathered in the investigation. Neither is in print any longer, so the local library is your best bet. Recently, they, and the HSCA hearings testimony and evidence, have begun to become available on computer CD-ROM. Reading them is both arduous and usually quite boring, not to mention extremely time consuming. The reward is that the conclusion reached will be your own, not that of someone else.
Secondly, in what has been viewed, by many, as one of the many sinister sidelights of the controversy, you will find that public access to many of the documents, internal correspondence and items of physical evidence that, in a “free society” are supposed to be available to all, has been seriously curbed, and in many cases completely denied. A visit to the National Archives II in College Park, Maryland, where all the files, exhibits, photographs and documents pertaining to the assassination are housed in the John F. Kennedy Assassination Records Collection and are supposedly available to the public, will leave you disappointed and also wondering just what exactly is going on. Even today, despite the changing climate, problems with access to key documents and pieces of physical evidence continue. If you’ve the time, please try to see, for example the rifle or the autopsy photographs. You will come away with much greater insight into the meaning of “government censorship”.
Next, especially with the release during the 1990’s of so many files which had been withheld from the public, the sheer volume of related documents is mind-boggling, running into millions upon millions of pages…most of which mean little or nothing, but with an occasional jewel hidden within. Finding the jewel is the trick. Too often the jewel is only seen when 2 or more seemingly unrelated documents are compared.
I’d estimate that if I spent 8 hours a day, 6 days a week at the National Archives, it would take 10 years to just read the documents housed there relating to this case…and there are other files which still remain out of reach. Being of a sharp enough mind to analyze and compare them, and having the additional time and desire to do so is prohibitive in the extreme. One is reminded of the old adage “looking for a needle in a haystack”. In comparison to this case, that exercise would be simple.
Being unable or unwilling to do all that, the next best step is to read a review that honestly analyzes the most important parts of the case: the Physical Evidence. According to WC general counsel Rankin, the physical evidence is the key to not only the WCR conclusions, but also the reason for the investigation centering on LHO alone. This book attempts to do just that.
While the testimony of the bystanders can be misleading or contradictory, and the theories about the various backgrounds, motives and relationships ambiguous, incorrect or simply irrelevant, the physical evidence, as presented in the two government studies, should show how and why investigators tied Oswald, alone, to the assassination. The physical evidence is the glue of the government’s case. If that glue doesn’t hold, then there must be another reason that someone has been trying so hard and for so long to blame only LHO.
An in-depth review of the physical evidence will point towards either conviction or conspiracy.
It will be the purpose of this work to establish, from a logical perspective and beyond any reasonable doubt, that two conspiracies did exist… one to commit the murder and one to implicate Oswald, while hiding the true facts. I will attempt to accomplish this by using only the physical evidence and testimony or statements about it. I believe it is only logical to assume that if a conspiracy to implicate Oswald and hide the true facts existed, then a conspiracy to commit the assassination also existed, probably including many of the cover-up conspirators.
So, it is the conspiracy to implicate Oswald that I will concentrate on in a reverse approach that has been slighted, in most cases, by researchers. I will also offer up all of the physical evidence available. Where necessary, at the end of reviewing some area of the physical evidence, I will inject, in a limited fashion, some other pertinent facts. I will use only those statements made initially, not later revised for purposes of personal gain, due to coercion or simply because recollections have faded or changed with the passage of time. Using the government’s studies, I will show you proof that most of the physical evidence initially recovered, was either planted, altered or destroyed; important witnesses ignored or told to remain silent; and that key figures were pressured, coerced or deceived into making statements or performing acts that helped perpetuate the conspiracy, increase the confusion and implicate Oswald.
I will not cover, in detail, what I consider to be the unimportant fringes of this case, such as the number and locations of all the gunmen; who shot Dallas Police Department (DPD) officer J.D. Tippit; how did Jack Ruby get into DPD police headquarters, etc. They are the insignificant parts that the government’s defenders want to argue over, in their attempts to confuse the one truly important issue at hand: Does the physical evidence justify the government’s conclusion?
It is my ardent belief that the documented physical evidence is the basic and fundamental source for finding the truth about this event. Using the testimony alone cannot prove which side is correct, since that testimony is totally subjective, and dependent upon the validity of the physical evidence.
There is a saying in logic that, once you’ve eliminated everything else, whatever is left, must be the truth. That axiom will be our foundation throughout this work. It was not the axiom of the government studies. You will see where the two studies, when confronted with evidence that could not be fitted into their necessary scenario, instead chose to invent the impossible, rather than explore the probable. It was the only way they could maintain their predetermined conclusion. That predetermined conclusion was their axiom.
You will also see, as I did, that many, many parts of the Warren Commission labyrinth simply do not make sense, yet remain the basis of the still “official” conclusions. They were accepted then, and they are still defended now. Why? Can the WCR conclusions still be correct, in spite of those parts? Can I be wrong about enough of them to save the “lone nut” scenario? Can you deal with both the truth and its implications, no matter where or to whom it points?
Sometimes that alone is enough to stop people from wanting to know or understand.
I will show you proof, through logical deductions, after a review of all of the evidence, that the case against Oswald was a well-planned and orchestrated fabrication, thus proving that the assassination of John F. Kennedy was conceived, planned and brought about by others who also had the power to both frame Oswald and hide the truth from the American people. I will also explain why this charade is still being carried on today. I will only speculate on Oswald’s background and Jack Ruby’s motives during my “theory” section which will include: who was behind it; what went “wrong”; why it happened; and why I still believe that it won’t be solved. I will cover more than enough for you to decide, but not too much so as to confuse you. Like you, I am merely a citizen who wants to know the real truth.