Open Letter to William Reymond
Translated by C.W. Porter
(Respectfully stolen from http://www.zetetique.org/facts.html)
For the original text, see::http://pagesperso-orange.fr/zec-world/jfklettreouverte.htm
An Introduction to Alternative Kennedy Assassination Conspiracy Theories
The Myth of Universal Free Health Care in Cuba by C.W. Porter
JFK: Sexual Sociopath and Political Faker
JFK For Masochists (dismisses Reymond as a "nut case" and "a crazy Frenchman" )
Dear Mr. Reymond,
Hello. With the approach of the 40th anniversary of the Kennedy assassination, you are attracting a lot of attention in France (Paris Match, Télérama, Le Figaro Magazine, France 2, Canal + , etc.....). That’s all as it should be; you’ve just published another book. And not just any book, but, nothing less -- and I quote you personally -- "the definitive work of the greatest mystery of the 20th century" !!! ("JFK,Le Dernier Témoin [The Last Witness]" - Flammarion, 2003). You claim to have identified the man who knows who killed Kennedy. You are certain there was a second assassin, and you even say who he was.... Golly! The general public is intrigued and interested. The many specialists in this mystery, who spend their time reading and debating on the topic, are impressed, and, all ears, come to listen to what you have to say. What you say is audacious indeed: where nobody – except you – ever succeeded for forty years (i.e., provide proof of a plot to kill Kennedy), you, William Reymond, have succeeded. If that’s true, then you deserve, not just congratulations, but our boundless admiration. But if it’s not true, then shame on you: you’ve spoken too soon. And that’s just it: several things, which I intend to suggest to you here, give me grounds to doubt your conclusions.
+] The first thing that strikes me, is that I thought you already knew who shot Kennedy. In fact, in your first book '("JFK, Autopsie d’un Crime d’Etat” [Autopsy of a Crime of State] - Flammarion, 1998), on page 412, you write: "The second Action team, located at the Texas School Book Depository, consisted of Lee Harvey Oswald and two anti-Castro Cubans, Yito del Valle and Hermino Díaz García. Many facts permit us to state their names with certainty". To me, it’s obvious that you knew, since you mention your "certainty" and you give their names. What’s more, you go even further, on page 413 : “Another fact permitting us to know that is was Yito who fired the shot[s] ... a fact which allows no doubt whatever: it was indeed [Hermino Díaz] who was located on the sixth floor of the Texas School Book Depository". There is no doubt of your certainty; your vocabulary is quite explicit. You know who killed Kennedy, and you’ve known it since 1998. It was Yito del Valle -- Hermino Díaz’s accomplice -- both of them anti-Castro Cubans. Well, now you’ve published a new book, in which you again claim – again -- that you know who killed Kennedy, and ...?...?... it’s no longer the same person! A new character appears; he’s named Malcolm Wallace. He’s the one who killed JFK. It wasn’t Yito del Valle after all. When I read this, I say: "OK, why not?". But what about your ‘certainty’ and ‘no doubt whatever"? What do you do with Valle and Díaz? You don’t even mention them. You dodge the issue, you try to forget. It’s obvious that you were wrong. Worse: you accused people ERRONEOUSLY. That’s serious. You should have been more careful – instead of making unproven accusations, despite your “certainty” and your “no doubt whatever”. But most importantly: in your second book, why don’t you ever mention this monumental error contained in the first book? There is not a line, not a word. You don’t even bother to correct it. It’s obvious that you are not being honest with your readers.
+] In your book "JFK, Le Dernier Temoin” [The Last Witness]", which I read carefully, the principal revelation, which you stress at great length, and which is used to demonstrate the hypothesis of the conspiracy, is the discovery of the killer’s fingerprints, Mac Wallace’s, on a cardboard box full of books. You even claim that the fingerprint was left “more or less the moment JFK was assassinated ...at the same time [as those of Lee Harvey Oswald]". You add (I quote): "On November 22, 1963, there was indeed an unknown person, very nervous, on the sixth floor, when John F. Kennedy was executed" (p. 304). Therefore, to sum up, you claim, "supported by proof", that Mac Wallace was beside Lee Oswald, on that 22 November, and that “He was the second assassin". OK, why not? I accept the hypothesis. But the big problem is that Billie Sol Estes, your "protégé", your principal source, claims that Mac Wallace, at that very moment, was in front of the Presidential cortege, precisely, behind the wooden picket fence. The document prepared by his lawyer, Douglas Caddy (pp. 396 - 398, which you even reproduce in facsimile in your book, which I have read, says: "Mr. Estes says that Cliff Carter told him that Mack Wallace fired a shot from the grassy knoll in Dallas, which hit JFK from the front during the assassination". I’m not making this up; you’re the one who even reproduced this document. But the document contradicts you. Since “Mac” Wallace -- you will agree -- could not have been on the 6th floor of the book depository with Oswald (as you claim) and behind the wooden picket fence, at the top of the lawn (as claimed by Billie Sol Estes), all at the same time. Either he was in front of Kennedy, or he was behind him, but not both; make up your mind. But I wonder: how could you have failed to notice this contradiction when you were writing your book? Anyway, whatever the reason, we, the readers, need an explanation. Either Wallace was really with Oswald – and in this case, it would be necessary to explain how the sequence of shots was fired; which person, Oswald or Wallace, actually fired the shots, and why none of Wallace’s prints were found on the rifle. Did he remove the prints before putting his finger on the cardboard box?, etc.) – or he was on the "grassy knoll", in front of Kennedy (and in this case, what are we to make of the print left on the cardboard box of books “at more or less the same time as when JFK was assassinated"?). Please explain. Or, perhaps Wallace was with Oswald in the school book depository, and a third sniper fired from behind the wooden picket fence? But in that case, you need to start all over again, and find out the identity of the third assassin...In any case, your present argument is illogical; something is missing. Your book remains vague on this subject; of course, you speak of a “second assassin” (hinting that it was Wallace), but you confuse the shot fired from in front ("proven", according to you, by JFK’s head movement, as seen in the Zapruder film) and the fingerprint on the cardboard box. In plain language, you need to integrate this discovery of Wallace’s fingerprint into a coherent scenario, which is what you have not done.
+] In your presentation (that is, in your book and accompanying television documentary broadcast on Canal +), you state that the fatal shot was fired from in front. You claim, therefore, there were two assassins: one hidden behind the wooden fence at the top of the grassy knoll, who shot JFK from in front, and another assassin located on the 6th floor of the Texas School Book Depository, who shot JFK from behind. This makes me wonder. Of course, you know that the film "JFK", by Oliver Stone, insinuates that there were three assassins -- the famous "triangulation of fire", dear to the heart of writer Jim Marrs, and suggested by David Ferrie in the film. Three assassins – which means one too many, according to you. But why should we believe you instead of Jim Marrs? The problem is that you never even mention the problem: the fact that other authors postulate three assassins (and with Groden and company, the number of shots is increased even further). Don’t you think you ought to discuss all this, even if only to demonstrate the fallacy in the reasoning of these other authors, and prove the superiority of your theory? Asserting the presence of two assassins, without any further detailed discussion or without explaining where the others are mistaken, is a bit frivolous. But above all, your great mistake is to make an assertion (two assassins) not backed up by fact, and without proving anything. Now, you know very well that the possibility of an assassin lurking behind wooden fence was raised in the 1960s (among others, by the author Mark Lane and by Jim Garrison). In the forty years since then, many writers having worked on this hypothesis, have searched for proof. You will have to admit that, until the present, NOBODY has succeeded in PROVING the presence of a second assassin behind the wooden fence (neither you – who seem to prefer simple assertions to proof -- nor the others). Problem number 1 is the available evidence. To postulate the hypothesis of an assassin in front is to ignore the evidence and run headlong into a problem which no one has yet succeeded in solving. You must ignore the autopsy report, the ballistics reports, the bullet casings, the traces of impact on the limousine, etc. ... all this evidence indicates a shot from behind. Claiming that there the shot was fired from in front necessarily implies that there was a gigantic conspiracy, involving hundreds of conspirators (including the Dallas Police Department, the doctors, Kennedy’s entourage, the government, etc.). Now, you yourself, like Billie Sol Estes, reject this paranoid notion, and you even say that the Kennedy assassination was only a conspiracy of a few persons. This is truly a paradox. But your real failure has been to neglect to examine your thought in greater depth or to support it with proof. Must I remind you that the medical files (and all the documents contained therein, including photographs and X-rays), certified by the specialists involved (see the conclusions of the HSCA), appear to indicate that the shots came from behind? What superior skills do you possess, Mr. Reymond, permitting you to ignore all this incontestable proof? If you postulate an assassin from in front, you must prove it. You are far from having done so, at this stage.
+] Your best proof, as you yourself said, in my presence, speaking to Delphine Peras, journalist at "France Soir", is the cassette with Cliff Carter. This famous cassette, in the possession of Billie Sol Estes, in which one distinctly hears, according to you, Cliff Carter, Johnson’s old friend and near advisor, saying: "Lyndon shouldn’t have ordered Mac to kill the President" (recorded in 1971). That’s it, that’s all. But that’s your best advantage, your best “proof”, your principal argument, for the hypothesis you present, which is Johnson’s involvement in the Kennedy assassination. I, for one, would like to ask: with the passage of time, don’t you think that this is a bit frivolous? Since after all, what you have there is not proof, but, at most, an accusation. That’s a very different thing! The first thing that comes to mind is that you do not mention the context. But the context is very important. You know perfectly well that one phrase taken in isolation does not necessarily have the meaning attributed to it later. It is easily distorted. But anyway, I grant you the benefit of the doubt, and I accept the hypothesis that everything Cliff Carter said on the cassette reinforces the meaning of the isolated phrase. But even that doesn’t take us far. It is not, in fact, very convincing, and this is why I think so:
-----> To start with, it is a highly indirect accusation. In actual fact, what you are saying is that you listened to an audio tape recording belonging to one man (Billie Sol Estes), in which you hear another man (Cliff Carter) accuse a third man (Lyndon Johnson), who is not even present during the conversation ... This is very – very – different from a tape recording in which Johnson confesses to anything or admits his involvement. It’s no proof at all. It reminds me of the story of the man who saw the man -- who saw the man -- who saw the man -- who saw a bear (was it really a bear?).
----> This is not the first time you've accused Johnson. I have, for example, a copy of a letter written by Evelyn Lincoln (John Kennedy’s secretary), in which she writes: "As for the assassination is concerned, it is my belief that there was a conspiracy because there were those that disliked him and felt the only way to get rid of him was to assassinate him. These five conspirators, in my opinion, were Lyndon B. Johnson, J. Edgar Hoover, the Mafia, the CIA and the Cubans in Florida" (letter supplied by Jim Marrs). Do you realize? Kennedy’s own secretary accuses Johnson of conspiring to kill JFK! That’s not all; there is also a known video document, an interview with Jack Ruby, in which he says that if Stevenson had been Vice-President, Kennedy would not have been assassinated. Faced with the journalist’s astonishment, he states: "The answer is the man in office now" (that is, Johnson) ["JFK, l'assassinat d'un rêve" [J] [JFK: The Murder of a Dream]. That’s impressive. Just as impressive as the Cliff Carter recording (which you talk about but do not, unfortunately, produce, in the Canal+ documentary). But it’s not enough to convince me that Johnson was guilty. Since I make a distinction – which is fundamental – between suspicion and evidence, between accusations and proof. An accusation must be supported. If it isn’t, it has no value. Unlike you, I distrust hasty conclusions. For example, in the Ruby case, his accusations stem, not stem from personal knowledge, but from suppositions -- after reading a book, and while his mental condition was deteriorating and he was starting to suffer from delirium.
----> Better than indirect accusations (those which accuse a third person of being guilty), there are direct accusations (those in which persons accuse themselves), and you will admit that they are theoretically more convincing. To take only one example, you certainly know of James Files, an inmate of Stateville Prison (his story is available on the Internet, told by Robert Vernon), who confessed to the JFK assassination and appeared to possess a knowledge of details which could only be explained by his participation in the crime. That, too, seems convincing. So, is he the “real” guilty person? Obviously, you don’t think so, since you do not mention him. But in this case, why don’t you explain to your readers why you don’t believe James Files, and why you refute his statements (direct accusation), in favour of those of Billie Sol Estes (indirect accusation)?
----> Persons other than Johnson have already been accused, many of them several times. Take, for example, Serge Raffy’s recent book, "Castro l'infidèle". Doesn’t the author claim that Kennedy was killed by a mixture of CIA rogue agents and rogue anti-Castro Cubans? So? Where’s the error? As the article says, when people read all that, they wonder who DIDN’T kill Kennedy? It’s a good idea to read David Perry’s article, Rashomon to the extreme (which draws up a list of all the people accused of killing Kennedy). What we need, is proof of all these accusations. And convincing proof. We should not content ourselves with suppositions, speculation, so-called disturbing facts, etc.
And then, again, you ought to be more careful, Mr. Reymond. You work too fast. Go back and re-read your own book. Billie Sol Estes himself said: "Almost all my information on the murder of John Kennedy dates back to after the 22nd of November" (p. 335), and: "I do not know who made the final decision to take action" (p. 339). So, if he doesn’t know himself, how do you dare be so quick to accuse Johnson?
+] On Thursday 23rd October, I accompanied the journalist from "France Soir", Delphine Peras, who came to interview you at your publisher, Flammarion. So I had a chance to talk to Billie Sol Estes and yourself. Before your arrival (you got stuck in a traffic jam), Delphine Peras and myself asked Billie Sol Estes some questions. Looking him straight in the eye, in the simplest way, most honest neutral way, I asked him why Johnson had had Kennedy killed. His answer was a single word: "immunity". He then continued: Johnson sought immunity; in fact, he was afraid of getting caught by the authorities, he understood that only the position of the Presidency could guarantee him the immunity that would protect him from prison. That’s the version given to me by Billie Sol Estes. So I would like to ask you: do you think that’s credible? I don’t. OK, I can imagine that the "industrial-military complex" has the power, the motive and sufficient resources to organize the assassination of the President and organize a conspiracy to cover up the facts. I can also imagine Fidel Castro using his henchmen to kill the President of the enemy country. But as regards Lyndon Johnson, it is difficult to believe that a man who thinks he’s in danger of getting caught by the cops for killing a more or less unknown person (Henry Marshall) would see no way out but to kill another man (!), who, what’s more, is the most powerful man in the country, a public figure whose death will entail an in-depth investigation which can only lead to discovery of the guilty party! Of course, one might imagine killing Henry Marshall and manipulating the person responsible for the investigation locally (a sheriff), but only a lunatic would imagine killing the President of the United States in the belief that he would be able to manipulate the hundreds of persons (police, FBI agents, CIA agents, physicians, experts, judges, etc.) who would conduct the investigation with endless funds and resources at their disposal. It’s worse than just a little bit scatter-brained. What’s more, how is Johnson supposed to have convinced anybody to go along with him in this scheme? Who would risk killing the President of the United States just to do Johnson a favour and help out of a jam? Talk about motives! No, it’s just not very convincing. The more I think about Billie Sol Estes saying "immunity", the more unbelievable I think it is.
+] Your book has two appendices. Let’s talk about them. The first, a form letter from President Kennedy, beginning with the words "Dear friends" (note the plural), and which must have been sent to thousands of people, proves nothing and is useless. Let’s continue. Then, Johnson’s letters to Billie Sol Estes, just as ordinary as can be ("thanks for the cantaloupes", … "thanks for the roses", etc.), are form letters typical of those sent all the time by any politician or public figure, showing, at least, that Johnson did not conceal his relationship with Estes, even if only by letter and rather distant. Copies of the newspaper articles mentioning Wallace’s 1952 criminal record and the murder of John Douglas Kinser cannot in any way be used to prove anything about Johnson’s involvement in the Kennedy assassination. But the worst thing is the copy of the newspaper article which you reproduce on page 387. It is quite simply illegible. So that’s worth nothing. One might say that one can always take the references (name of the newspaper, date of publication), and do our own research in the archives. But you don’t give any references! So we have a newspaper article we can’t read, the contents of which we do not know. This isn’t the way to prove Johnson was guilty... to tell the truth, your appendices reveal a lack of intellectual discipline; they’re just plain amateurish.
+] I could also mention the bibliography. It’s only half finished. You only mention “conspiracy” books. But you must know that there are also recent works defending the official version and discussing the pseudo-arguments of the critics of the Warren Report. I will only cite the three most important: "Case Closed" by Gerald Posner, "Conspiracy of One" by Jim Moore, and "With Malice" by Dale Myers. Why don’t you mention these books? They would certainly help your readers form a better idea of the arguments pro and con. I might add that there is no index to your book, which makes it a bit hard to search for names and check things.
+] You claim that Lyndon Johnson was guilty of having JFK killed. This implies that he didn’t like him (or resented him, or hated him, or, in any case, that his feelings were strong enough to make him want JFK dead), that he was aware of the assassination and that he knew who killed Kennedy. Now, three things make me strongly doubt this:
----> Pierre Salinger, who knew John Kennedy from the time JFK was a Senator, and collaborated with him from the end of the 1950s and then served as White House "Press Secretary" under the JFK Presidency, knew John Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson very well (he was also "Press Secretary" under Johnson for five more months). He lived with them for years, sharing private moments in the both men’s company. I met Pierre Salinger three times, and did a recorded interview with him a few years ago, in his offices at ABC News in London. What he told me was very clear: Lyndon Johnson admired John Kennedy. The article in Paris Match strongly suggests that he detested Kennedy. But that is contrary to Pierre Salinger’s testimony. In reply to my question, “What was his [Johnson’s] relation with President Kennedy?", here is his answer (recorded by myself, F.C.) : "Very good. Excellent. I mean, that was interesting because we had lots of discussions during the time I worked with him at the White House, and he had nothing but praise for John Kennedy". So you see, if I have to choose between what Pierre Salinger says (who lived with both men), and what you suggest (you weren’t even born yet), well, I prefer to believe Salinger! Thus, it is difficult to imagine Johnson wanting to kill John Kennedy.
----> You quote Madeleine Brown in your work. In fact, Johnson’s former mistress is actually an important part of your puzzle, in support of your arguments. But you cannot be unaware that the documentary "The True Story of JFK, The Assassination, the Film", she states: "I saw him [Johnson] the day after the assassination. I told him, 'there’s a rumour going around Dallas that you were involved'. He went into a rage, and told me, at the time, that it was the oil barons of Dallas and the CIA. Then he left, slamming the door, telling me he’d already said too much". Worse yet, in another documentary (Who Killed John Fitzgerald Kennedy?, Envoyé Spécial), she repeated the same thing, adding: "He told me that he was not responsible, but that it was the fat cats [Texas oil magnates] and the CIA". These are embarrassing statements for you. Johnson, personally told his mistress that it was the CIA, and not him, who was responsible for JFK’s death. Now, you say, in your book, that the Kennedy assassination is a simple story; neither the CIA, nor Castro, not any of that, but only [“Mac”] Wallace, killed JFK, on Johnson’s orders. These statements by Madeleine Brown therefore contradict your argument. So either you knew about them, and concealed that fact from your readers (or you decided to ignore what didn’t suit you, which is a bit annoying to anyone who knows how coolly you accuse Lyndon Johnson today). Now, personally, I would take the liberty of stressing one little detail that you omit in your book: Madeleine Brown, Johnson’s mistress, repeated several times that he said he was not responsible, but that it was the CIA. Your readers should know that.
----> You know Colonel Fletcher Prouty, former Pentagon official responsible for relations with the CIA. He’s the man who inspired Oliver Stone to create the character "X", in his film “JFK". Prouty is on the side of the conspiracy theorists. Cited by authors like Groden, it is he who is used as an authority when these authors accuse the special services of assassinating JFK. Now, in the documentary "JFK, The Assassination" (supplement to the Oliver Stone film), he assures us that Johnson was not aware of the assassination. Prouty refers to a discussion between Johnson (the President) and Hoover (head of the FBI), in which Johnson asks whether he was also a target. As Prouty says (I quote): "I think that clears up the question of whether Johnson was involved. If he thought they were shooting at him he didn't hire the gunner". So, Prouty absolves Johnson of blame. Doesn’t that bother you at all?
+] You told me, before I read your book, that I would be surprised by the treatment you had in store for Robert Groden. In fact, as you mention in your first book, Groden is the author of a well-known “conspiracy” book, making audacious claims (there were numerous snipers on Dealey Plaza, the photos and X-rays of the autopsy were faked, there was a hidden sniper concealed in Dealey Plaza referred to as "black dog man", Oswald was on the ground floor of the book depository when the shots were fired, etc.), people like Paul-Eric Blanrue and myself criticized you for endorsing these statements so uncritically. I therefore expected, in your second book, an objective critique on your part of Groden’s statements, explaining why, setting forth, with arguments, you are, or are not, in agreement with him, which statements you agree with, which of his statements you dispute, whether or not you changed your mind since your first book, etc. Alas! I really over-estimated you. In your second book, just as you say, you do mention Groden… on a single page! And what do you criticize him for? On his theories on the Kennedy assassination, not a single word (a complete vacuum). But, on the other hand, we learn that his collaborators … urinated behind the picket fence! At this point, Mr. Reymond, I must assume that you are confusing essential matters with trivia.
+] Over the past few years, the Zapruder film has been the object of controversy. Some people, including yourself, openly doubt its authenticity. In your first book "JFK, Autopsy of a Crime of State", you clearly state (speaking, once again, of "certainty") that the conspirators falsified the film to give the public a false idea of the assassination. For example, according to you, part of the film was cut (the moment where the limousine passed the Texas School Book Depository), to prevent people from becoming aware of Secret Service involvement in the assassination, since the President’s bodyguards should never have agreed to permit the official cortège to take such a sharp turn (due to the speed). In short, it’s a bit tenuous. It’s even incorrect, since the Zapruder film — it’s been proven, demonstrated, confirmed — is perfectly authentic, and was never falsified the least bit. But at the time, you went so far as to state that you, William Reymond, had seen "the real Zapruder film". I then accused you of lying, since no such film exists. Still, just the same, in all the discussions on the subject, on the Internet, you claimed that the Zapruder film was faked, and I, in opposition to yourself, stated that it was authentic. What’s the situation today? When I met you last month, you were no longer so sure of yourself as before. Finally, you admit that you were no doubt deceived, that it was probably not "the real Zapruder film" that you saw, but probably a bad-quality copy, and you just made a mistake (in the Jack White video, where you speak of "the real Zapruder film") etc. Today, when I asked you whether you still believe that the Zapruder film is a fake, you replied: "It’s not very important. That’s not the question. What’s important is Wallace’s presence at Dealey Plaza". In short, you evade the question. Why not have the courage to admit, publicly, that: "François Carlier was right, and I, William Reymond, was wrong; the Zapruder film is authentic". There is no shame in being wrong, but it shows bad faith to refuse to admit one’s mistakes. So, Monsieur Reymond, if it’s a fact that you misled the readers of your first book, why not just have the courage to admit that you were wrong!
+] There is something that I don’t understand, in what you claim about Billie Sol Estes. You say that his cassettes (recorded conversations) protected him, and that, without them, he would have been killed. But, why does he admit the truth and inform the public of the content of the tapes by making accusations against Cliff Carter and Johnson? Since it all comes to the same thing in the end. In plain language, if he talks, he’s let the cat out of the bag, he becomes dangerous and must be eliminated. Normally, the cassettes would cease to protect him the moment he blabs all his secrets in public. What’s more, how do you explain the following paradox? When Clint Peoples has a file proving the participation of the Wallace-Carter-Johnson trio in the JFK assassination, "they" kill him and get back the file. But when Billie Sol Estes has cassettes proving the participation of the Wallace-Carter-Johnson trio in the JFK assassination, "they" leave him alone, “they” let him live, “they” don’t do anything. Don’t you find that a bit strange? Do you find that believable? Do you really want to try to convince your readers of that?
+] I watched the Canal + documentary very carefully. I was struck by three things, among others.
---> 1. First, mention is made, at the beginning of the documentary, of “witnesses running to the spot found spent bullets on the grass"; it is then claimed that these witnesses were eliminated by the FBI. WHAT?!?! Spent bullets on the grass? But that’s completely new. And this is extremely important information! Unfortunately, it’s just a phrase, tossed around like confetti, and then abandoned completely by the documentary. Who were these witnesses? Where are the bullets? What proof do you have? We will never know. And that’s really too bad. Since, it’s just the absence of any bullet that makes the claim of a sniper firing from in front not very credible. Now, in uttering this phrase, the documentary gave the impression that the FBI concealed decisive information in analysing the crime, and that you’ve discovered new information. But this stratagem is dishonest. Nobody ever found a spent bullet on the grass. In other words, the concrete physical evidence found at Dealey Plaza consists of three bullets -- not four, not five – at least, in the absence of proof to the contrary. So, if you claim the contrary, go ahead -- prove it (I await your information with impatience).
---> 2. Second thing, one of the least convincing of the points you raise, is the moment when the policeman, Jay Harrison, shows you an exchange of correspondence between Hoover and Wallace. He speaks of two letters. The reader is waiting to see what these letters contain, in support of your theory. Nothing at all! In fact, nothing is said about their content, but only on their postal mailing dates. It’s like a dream. What rubbish! It’s really a bit thick… Take my advice; if you don’t have any proof of what you say, then don’t say anything at all. But the postal mailing dates (you don’t even provide any information so we can make a comparison), prove absolutely NOTHING. Nothing at all.
---> 3. Finally, third thing, Jack Ruby’s famous letter, recovered by the policeman, Al Maddox (the Canal+ documentary claims that is "a document unknown to date", but that is not quite true, since, for my part, I learned of its existence in 1996). There, one wonders whether you are guilty of excessive gullibility or simply laziness, a failure to verify what you read, in making such a nonsensical statement. You claim that Ruby wrote that it was necessary to silence Oswald. Here, once again, you fail to place the statement in context. You should have reproduced the letter in its entirety, clearly and legibly. Why didn’t you do so? You should also have spoken about Ruby, his statements, his mental state of health at the end of his life. In reality, Ruby is complaining that people were saying that he had silenced Oswald. Your work is a botch, Mr. Reymond. Mistakes like this can only ruin your reputation in the long run. Are you aware of that?
+] You introduce a new character under the name of Ligget, a man who did the makeup job on the JFK corpse. There is no need to say that this is the weakest part of your argument; in fact, you are simply tossing unsupported speculations around. You simply say that somebody came to see him at the cemetery in Dallas and that he went away without saying where he went. It’s really not very much. You don’t mention Lifton at any time in your documentary or your book. So how can you avoid mentioning him once you start talking about the make-up on the corpse? And you never explain where this is all supposed to have happened, where Ligget is concerned. Where did Ligget disappear to? How? Who saw him? Ligget was in Dallas. Are you implying that the make-up on the corpse was applied in Dallas? Impossible, there wasn’t time. And how was it done -- wax? And nobody noticed Ligget at Bethesda? It’s more than just hard to believe. In the same area, Paris Match shows a photo and X-ray of the corpse implying that they are contradictory. This claim has already been made many times. Robert Groden concludes that the documents are fakes. David Lifton concludes that the body was "made up". You seem to demolish both stories, from what I read most recently. But the problem, according to you, is that neither you, nor Groden, nor Lifton, to my knowledge, are graduates in specialist medicine, or radiology degree. Physicians have examined this problem (Wecht, among others) see no contradiction between the photos and the X-rays. How do you explain that?
+] There was no “Mac” Wallace fingerprint on Oswald’s rifle. I think you admit this. But there seems to have been a “Mac” Wallace fingerprint on a cardboard box. Does this mean that Wallace wore gloves to fire the shots, but forget to wear them when he touched the cardboard box? Where are the gloves? It was proven that all the bullets were fired from Oswald’s rifle, and no other. This is scientific, how do you explain that? Maybe Wallace didn’t fire any shots at all. Another question comes to mind. The fingerprints were only identified in 1998. So, for all these years, nobody knew whose fingerprints they were, but people knew they existed. But then, Johnson should have suspected that they might be Wallace’s. Why not just have them destroyed? Why didn’t Johnson just order Hoover to remove them from the file, if the fingerprints belonged to Wallace -- his accomplice? Why leave them around at all, running the risk of their identification. You never answer this question. Now let’s think about this a little bit longer. Supposing that Johnson wanted to get rid of Kennedy and set up this whole macabre plan, would he have been idiot enough to risk getting caught, by sending a man he knew, or who could be traced to him? This would be worse than careless, or bad organization, but absolute unconsciousness! Anyway, on this subject, it would be a good idea, just the same, not to forget one important fact; the FBI, aware of these fingerprints, and after examining them, stated that they were not Wallace’s. What’s more, other fingerprint specialists have confirmed the conclusions of the FBI, and disputed those of Darby. In plain language, these specialists deny that they are Wallace’s fingerprints. I will be careful to avoid stating my opinion, since I am not at all a specialist in this matter, but honesty compels you to inform your readers that the version you defend — that these are Wallace’s fingerprints — is disputed by competent people.
+] And anyway, why would Johnson kill Kennedy? As my professor at DEA used to say, there was no radical change in American policy after Kennedy’s death. There was no coup d'état, no regime change, which would have required Kennedy’s death. No, Johnson kept all of Kennedy’s principal advisors and appointees in office on with him, under Johnson. And for a lot of people, in domestic policy, he continued JFK’s policies, even going much further in the same direction, particularly, with regards to civil rights (even going against the hard-line segregationists in his own state, Texas). What changed when JFK died and LBJ took over? The war in Vietnam? Of course, but most reputable historians are unsure of what Kennedy’s attitude would have been with regards to the war in Vietnam. He’s dead, so we can only speculate. As Salinger says, Johnson had to face a different situation from the one facing Kennedy. Things had changed. That’s how it happened, but we will never whether or not it would have been better or worse with JFK. Johnson was passively drawn into events just as much as he actively chose his course of action. It is wrong, and overly simplistic, to say that Johnson went into Vietnam while Kennedy wouldn’t have done so. So, we have to ask what Johnson’s motives could have been in having Kennedy killed? The claim is made that it was just personal; he wanted to be President, quickly, that’s all. But how could he convince the killers (and all the other accomplices) to take such an enormous risk for him? Who would have been crazy enough to sacrifice his life so that an overly ambitious Vice-President could be President, chop-chop? And there must have been a lot of accomplices, all crazy, to succeed in killing the President, without being seen, hiding the truth, misleading the investigation, etc. It would have required at least one hundred people, in key positions, taking infinite risks, not out of self-interest, at all, but to please LBJ, who wanted to be President without waiting! What kind of motive is that! What an incredible scenario! But Johnson is dead. He can’t defend himself. What other evidence is there? A confession by Johnson? A letter in his handwriting proving his involvement? No, there is nothing of the kind. There is only an audio tape possessed by someone (Sol Estes) in which somebody else (Carter), speaks of another person (Johnson). That’s not very much evidence... And what’s Oswald’s role in all this? According to your scenario, therefore, was Wallace there, with Oswald, on the sixth floor of the Book Depository? If so, Oswald saw Wallace shoot Kennedy. So Oswald knew that Wallace killed Kennedy (or, at least, shot at him). So when Oswald was arrested, why didn’t he ever say that he saw the real killer? Why not just turn Wallace in? Wallace wasn’t his friend; they had never seen each other. And even if Oswald was – which I do not believe – a secret agent engaged in surveillance activity, he knew perfectly well that Wallace wasn’t a member of the same branch of service, much less his superior. So there was no motive of need to protect him. So why didn’t he stop him from shooting? Why didn’t he reveal it all later? Why didn’t Oswald ever say anything? He knew he was suspected of the murder, he knew they thought he was guilty, he knew he was in danger of the electric chair for killing the President. Are we supposed to believe that Oswald, a poverty-stricken employee of the Book Depository, saw an unknown person shooting at the President, then, when he, himself, Oswald gets arrested by mistake, he chooses to keep quiet about it, and risk getting convicted? This is ridiculous and idiotic. So? What’s more, one might wonder what Johnson had to gain, compared to what he had to lose, for organizing Kennedy’s murder. If he was patient, all he had to do was wait five years, and he could have become President anyway (like George Bush Sr., Vice-President under Reagan before becoming President himself). But if he organized Kennedy’s murder and then got found out, the only thing he’d be entitled to would be the electric chair, a disgrace before history. Do you think he was so power-crazy to risk all that? Five years’ waiting, when he was already Vice-President, that’s not such a big deal. It’s better than living with the fear of the electric chair for the rest of his life. Johnson was a human being, of flesh and blood, and not some sort of fantastic character out of a detective novel. We have to remember that.
+] Mr. Reymond, you are young, energetic. I have nothing against you personally (even if you have refused to debate with me in the past). I will give you the benefit of the doubt; perhaps you’re right; perhaps you found the guilty party, after all. (In the end, the guilty parties would have to be Nathan Darby and Barr McClellan, but let’s pass over that). Personally, after years of research, and after having read as much as possible, I think Oswald was guilty. I have nothing to sell and I have no vested interests (except in good sense, critical spirit, objectivity and honesty). I can imagine becoming convinced tomorrow that I was wrong for years. I would not hesitate to admit it. I would not hesitate to confess publicly that I was mistaken, if that was the case. If Johnson was guilty, it’s no skin off my nose. I must say that you have not convinced me so far. Your last book (as well as the Canal+ documentary that went with it) is not satisfactory, far from it. You have totally failed in proving your contentions. You leave too many questions unanswered. I will stick to my opinions, and will stand by them in public. I invite anyone interested in the Kennedy assassination to read this open letter and let us have their opinions, both of us. And I’ve got to say, I’m afraid the results wouldn’t be too flattering to you. Of course, I understand that you have been very successful in writing books denouncing plots all over the place, and you don’t feel like killing the goose laying the golden eggs by examining your own theories too carefully, or by engaging in objective debate with competent persons, at the risk – perhaps – of seeing that you were wrong. This is humanly understandable… But, well, some people, including some of your readers, who only want one thing: to know the truth. They would like you to help them. Show us that they are not being naive in expecting you to help them find it!
[P.S. : William Reymond has read this response. He has promised to answer it, under his conditions, which are:
- publication of the response, in full, without being interrupted by comments, changes or corrections.
- activation of the Internet links cited in his response.
- dissemination of his response in my mailing list, as I have already done with the present open letter.
- mention of the presence of his response at the top of the page of my open letter.
Of course, I accepted his conditions immediately, without any discussion, even adding a commitment: if his response was convincing, I would not hesitate a second to admit, on my own Internet site, that I was wrong, and that he is right. My objective is quite simple: to tell the truth, whatever it might be. But... there has been no response. None at all …
[François Carlier, 2003]
[All rights reserved]
Respectfully translated by C. W. Porter, 2008
An Introduction to Alternative Kennedy Assassination Conspiracy Theories
Through the Kactological Canal with Gun and Camera
JFK: Sexual Sociopath and Political Faker