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Z Film Real or Fake?

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Z Film Real or Fake?

Post by Mick Purdy on Sat 27 Jul 2013, 10:18 am

I have read Mr Fetzer's, Costello's, and Healey's take on the Z Film. Also read Doug Horne's work on the film too. Notwithstanding their excellent credentials and their amazing research into the possibilities of alteration, I'm not so convinced that composite frame alteration was achievable from an 8mm film without obvious detection in 1963. My back ground is 36 years in film and television as a cameraman in Australia. This post in no way is meant to be interpreted as a slight on these people or their work, as I very much understand the enormous contributions each has made in this area particularly.

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Re: Z Film Real or Fake?

Post by greg parker on Sat 27 Jul 2013, 11:42 am

Mick, if I understand you correctly, you're not saying it wasn't possible to do in '63. That being the case, I think those who say it was altered would not be particularly concerned about your argument that such alteration would have been obvious - because to at least some of those who argue for it - it WAS obvious.

I have no opinion on it by, btw... another area I usually give a wide berth to.

Hopefully there are one or two here that have given it some thoughts and can carry a discussion on it. Noel Twyman's calculations in Bloody Treason was the last time I even read anything on it. If memory serves, he did manage to simply the maths involved...


Last edited by greg parker on Sat 27 Jul 2013, 1:35 pm; edited 1 time in total

_________________
Mixing Pop and Politics he asks me what the use is
I offer him embarrassment and my usual excuses
While looking down the corridor
Out to where the van is waiting
I'm looking for the Great Leap Forward

            Billy Bragg
-----------------------------
 Australians don't mind criminals: It's successful bullshit artists we despise. 
             Lachie Hulme            
-----------------------------
The Cold War ran on bullshit.
              Me

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Re: Z Film Real or Fake?

Post by Mick Purdy on Sat 27 Jul 2013, 1:29 pm

Composite work on a reversal 8mm film back in '63 would have been technically possible, but the hurdles one would face to achieve that would have been enormous. That is not to say that alteration could not have happened ie excised frames, and even some simple masking. However, even on the very poor quality internet copies of the Z film MPI's or Groden's, I cannot see any evidence of composite work. Composite work would, especially on such a small format , be easily detected. Those who argue for alteration have every right to believe something's not quite right with the footage, all I'm suggesting is "composite" work is a quantum leap from the less difficult processes and techniques of subtracting or adding frames, repeating frames, slowing down or speeding up footage to give the viewer a different perspective. I knowingly state this even after reading through Fetzer, Costello, Healey, Zavada and Horne's work.

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Re: Z Film Real or Fake?

Post by greg parker on Sat 27 Jul 2013, 1:58 pm

Thanks for the clarification. I agree that if any alteration occurred it was more than likely the simple methods you describe. The simplest methods that adequately do the job makes perfect sense.

_________________
Mixing Pop and Politics he asks me what the use is
I offer him embarrassment and my usual excuses
While looking down the corridor
Out to where the van is waiting
I'm looking for the Great Leap Forward

            Billy Bragg
-----------------------------
 Australians don't mind criminals: It's successful bullshit artists we despise. 
             Lachie Hulme            
-----------------------------
The Cold War ran on bullshit.
              Me

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Re: Z Film Real or Fake?

Post by Guest on Sat 27 Jul 2013, 7:52 pm

I go back and forth on this issue. I'm nowhere near to being a photo expert and don't have an informed opinion. I've read The Great Zapruder Hoax and found it convincing. I wouldn't put it past the perpetrators to have altered the film. They had several years to  achieve this. But there is a lot of data in the extent film that gets little recognition. Don Roberdeau's work on little Rosemary Willis- who was up near the Elm/Houston hairpin turn- and ran after the limo but stopped in reaction to the shots and looked in the direction of the corner of the stockade fence- this is important stuff. Because she maintained she saw a guy w/ a hat on behind the stockade fence for years afterward. 

There is also a bone chip sliding off the rear of the limo, that has been overlooked by a lot of Zapruder film research specialists.

I find the 6 accounts, from divergent sources, of a 2nd similar film, extremely convincing. According to Steve Osborn's ARRB testimony, there was an Army Intel team up from Ft. Hood filming around Dealey Plaza, 3 or 4 guys. They had video equipment on backpacks (this is 1963) that was feeding into a trailer command post via wireless. I think this was probably that unmarked silver trailer van beside the Dal-Tex, behind the laundry truck. The Ft. Hood team's equipment got confiscated about 15 minutes after the assassination by a bunch of guys claiming they were FBI. Go figure. How did the "FBI" know where these guys were stationed? So soon after the ambush? 

This is probably the high-quality footage that these 6 sources have attested to. For example, a black tripod was discerned in an early issue of Life up in that alcove behind Zapruder.

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Re: Z Film Real or Fake?

Post by Martin Hay on Sat 27 Jul 2013, 8:07 pm

I've never understood the alteration argument.

The film as it stands does not fit with the official story. It shows JFK and Connally reacting at different times and shows Kennedy being slammed violently backwards with the head shot. Why would conspirators wishing to create a record supporting the lone gunman myth want to fabricate a film that actually contradicts it?

Why create that record at all? Why was it necessary? Why create a supposedly detectable forgery? Why not just snatch up Zapruder's film for "national security" reasons and destroy it? Then you don't have any detection problems.

Having a version of the Z film out there is in no way necessary or beneficial to the cover-up. On that basis alone I think the alteration argument is a silly distraction.

Just my opinion of course.

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Re: Z Film Real or Fake?

Post by greg parker on Sat 27 Jul 2013, 10:05 pm

Martin,

if the film was known about, snatching it up and deep sixing it under "national security" would not work when you are blaming a politically confused lone nut.

If there was any alteration at all, I think it was around the issue of the limo stopping and nothing else. Head moving back and to the left? No problem. We can "explain" that. Different reaction times? No problem. We can get around that. Stopped limo? No getting around that one. Goes against everything in the manual.

The distraction on the issue is more about "sides" and egos and upmanship - along with some of the most long-winded mumbo jumbo since Bjelke Petersen held reign over his fiefdom of Queensland.

_________________
Mixing Pop and Politics he asks me what the use is
I offer him embarrassment and my usual excuses
While looking down the corridor
Out to where the van is waiting
I'm looking for the Great Leap Forward

            Billy Bragg
-----------------------------
 Australians don't mind criminals: It's successful bullshit artists we despise. 
             Lachie Hulme            
-----------------------------
The Cold War ran on bullshit.
              Me

greg parker
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Re: Z Film Real or Fake?

Post by Richard Hocking on Sat 27 Jul 2013, 11:09 pm

Martin Hay wrote:I've never understood the alteration argument.

The film as it stands does not fit with the official story. It shows JFK and Connally reacting at different times and shows Kennedy being slammed violently backwards with the head shot. Why would conspirators wishing to create a record supporting the lone gunman myth want to fabricate a film that actually contradicts it?

Why create that record at all? Why was it necessary? Why create a supposedly detectable forgery? Why not just snatch up Zapruder's film for "national security" reasons and destroy it? Then you don't have any detection problems.

Having a version of the Z film out there is in no way necessary or beneficial to the cover-up. On that basis alone I think the alteration argument is a silly distraction.

Just my opinion of course.


This is a legitimate argument against Zapruder Film alteration.  The extant film supports at least one shooter to the front of JFK, and fairly effectively dispatches the SBT when we view the relative positions and posture of JFK and Governor Connally during the shooting sequence, along with their visibly staggered reaction times to being wounded.

Having acknowledged the basis of the argument,  I think there are some reasonable answers to the questions posed.  I have divided Martin's post into several issues and offer my own thoughts on each.

Regarding Alteration of the film:
57 witnesses in Dealey Plaza gave testimony that the Presidential Limo either slowed down dramatically or came to a complete stop about the time of the fatal head shot.  6 other individuals have claimed to see a film in which the Limo stops.  
This slowing / stop is not shown on the current film.  This is evidence that, at a very minimum, the film was altered to show the Limo moving at a relatively constant speed during the shooting sequence.

Regarding the question, "Why not just snatch up Zapruder's film for "national security" reasons and destroy it?":
Actually, the film was "snatched up" by C. D. Jackson, CIA asset and publisher of Life magazine, the day after the assassination.  It was held privately for some 12 years before being publicly shown on the Geraldo Rivera show in 1975.

Regarding the question, "Why would conspirators wishing to create a record supporting the lone gunman myth want to fabricate a film that actually contradicts it?":

 It has been noted by countless researchers that the final 1964 report of the Warren Commission on the assassination of JFK contains dramatic inconsistencies. These inconsistencies disprove the Commission's conclusion that Lee Harvey Oswald was the Lone Assassin of JFK.  Yet the Commission spent considerable time and resources to produce this Titanic report that should have sunk when launched. 

We can now pose the similar question, "Why would conspirators wishing to create a record supporting the lone gunman myth want to fabricate a report that actually contradicts it?"

Seeking the answer to both questions above must take into account the hubris of the Conspirators.

Allen Dulles was aware of the many inconsistencies in the report, but has been quoted as saying, "The American people don't read."


One final thought.  When the Zapruder film was finally released to the public on the Geraldo Rivera show in 1975, the assassination was a 12 year old memory and the coverup had been reasonably successful in that there had been no popular uprising or revolution.  Gerald Ford was President, and Nelson Rockerfeller was Vice-President.  Lyndon Johnson, Allen Dulles, J. Edgar Hoover, Earl Warren, and C.D. Jackson were all dead.  It is perhaps, understandable that the remaining conspirators may have felt comfortable in the knowledge they could deal with any questions or observations regarding the Zapruder film.

 

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Re: Z Film Real or Fake?

Post by Martin Hay on Sat 27 Jul 2013, 11:31 pm

greg parker wrote:Martin,

if the film was known about, snatching it up and deep sixing it under "national security" would not work when you are blaming a politically confused lone nut.

If there was any alteration at all, I think it was around the issue of the limo stopping and nothing else. Head moving back and to the left? No problem. We can "explain" that. Different reaction times? No problem. We can get around that. Stopped limo? No getting around that one. Goes against everything in the manual.

The distraction on the issue is more about "sides" and egos and upmanship - along with some of the most long-winded mumbo jumbo since Bjelke Petersen held reign over his fiefdom of Queensland.

 Greg,

FBI/Secret Service/DPD/CIA/whoever could easily have taken Zapruder's film from him on the grounds of national security before they made it obvious they were going with the lone nut story (i.e. on Nov 22) and then said it was accidently lost or damaged and given him some money to appease him. It would have been the easiest thing in the world to do. Far, far easier than unnecessarily including yet more folks in on the deal by getting photographic experts to create an elaborate and supposedly detectable forgery. Even if you're simply talking about removing the supposed limo stop, I think the argument still applies. Having the film is not necessary. Getting rid of it is the easier, more sensible option.

I also think it needs to be remembered that the Zapruder film played a big part in forcing the SBT on the Commission which, of course, was the most controversial aspect of the report. Without the film, they could more easily have gone with a 3 hit scenario and their report could have appeared more credible.

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Re: Z Film Real or Fake?

Post by beowulf on Sun 28 Jul 2013, 8:11 am

"This is probably the high-quality footage that these 6 sources have attested to."

Hadn't heard of the Ft. Hood camera, but if its film (I doubt it was actually video) were confiscated by the Feds, I wonder if that would explain the odd episode Horne describes of the CIA analyzing the "Zapruder film" on two successive nights. Perhaps one of those was the (presumably higher resolution) Army footage.

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Re: Z Film Real or Fake?

Post by greg parker on Sun 28 Jul 2013, 9:15 am

Martin Hay wrote:
greg parker wrote:Martin,

if the film was known about, snatching it up and deep sixing it under "national security" would not work when you are blaming a politically confused lone nut.

If there was any alteration at all, I think it was around the issue of the limo stopping and nothing else. Head moving back and to the left? No problem. We can "explain" that. Different reaction times? No problem. We can get around that. Stopped limo? No getting around that one. Goes against everything in the manual.

The distraction on the issue is more about "sides" and egos and upmanship - along with some of the most long-winded mumbo jumbo since Bjelke Petersen held reign over his fiefdom of Queensland.

 Greg,

FBI/Secret Service/DPD/CIA/whoever could easily have taken Zapruder's film from him on the grounds of national security before they made it obvious they were going with the lone nut story (i.e. on Nov 22) and then said it was accidently lost or damaged and given him some money to appease him. It would have been the easiest thing in the world to do. Far, far easier than unnecessarily including yet more folks in on the deal by getting photographic experts to create an elaborate and supposedly detectable forgery. Even if you're simply talking about removing the supposed limo stop, I think the argument still applies. Having the film is not necessary. Getting rid of it is the easier, more sensible option.

I also think it needs to be remembered that the Zapruder film played a big part in forcing the SBT on the Commission which, of course, was the most controversial aspect of the report. Without the film, they could more easily have gone with a 3 hit scenario and their report could have appeared more credible.

Martin, I understand what you're saying, but doing what you say tends to implicate a lot of people - at least in hindsight.

Let's start with a presumption of innocence on the part of those involved in taking the Z-Film and withholding it. Richard mentioned CD Jackson. Jackson was a psy-war expert. This type of work mainly entailed the planting of false stories, propaganda (a mix of fact and fiction) and censorship. It would be his very strong instinct to "censor" the film until it could be established what it showed, what value it had within his domain and etc. IIRC didn't life switch a couple of frames around in print AFTER the Lone Nut pitch was made? And did that not support the LN pitch? This would be LIFE pitching in, doing it's bit for the gipper. 

If these guys were NOT conspirators, then they had no reason to destroy the film. In fact, NOT destroying the film may well be exculpatory evidence.

Now lets say some frames were duplicated or removed in order to erase the stop. Does that implicate anyone as plotters? No. To me, it is normal bureaucratic CYA at work. They were acting to protect the USSS reputation. Again, doing their bit for the "team".

Not everything that happened was tied up in the one unifying plot.

_________________
Mixing Pop and Politics he asks me what the use is
I offer him embarrassment and my usual excuses
While looking down the corridor
Out to where the van is waiting
I'm looking for the Great Leap Forward

            Billy Bragg
-----------------------------
 Australians don't mind criminals: It's successful bullshit artists we despise. 
             Lachie Hulme            
-----------------------------
The Cold War ran on bullshit.
              Me

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Re: Z Film Real or Fake?

Post by Guest on Sun 28 Jul 2013, 9:43 am

That Steve Osborn testimony may be read at:

http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/arrb/index71.htm

I've also found the story convincing, going on memory here, in The Man Who Knew Too Much (?) of H.L. Hunt employee Paul Rothermel saying that Zapruder showed up at Hunt's estate sometime around midnight to drop off a copy of his film. Meaning there was a 4th copy actually made at Jamison, the optical print shop, on top of Zappy's 3 signed and attested copies. 

I really see Zappy as tangentially involved in the plot, in the sense that someone strongly encouraged him to bring his camera to that pedestal and keep filming no matter what.

I've pondered at times that a copy of the "other film" went to the estate of D.H. Byrd, who lived in the McMansion-style University Park in North Dallas. Then it went to his descendents, since he died in 1986. French journalist William Reymond claims to have seen it and I'd guess it was either through a Byrd or Billy Sol Estes contact.

Another copy went to Air Force Intelligence (I surmise) which might explain Rich DellaRosa's claim. Milicent Cranor said she saw one while working in a back room at NBC in New York. Scott Myers saw one in Texas but I couldn't guess where. Greg Burnham's viewing I'm not familiar enough with. Apologies as I can't recall the 6th viewer right now but have the name written down somewhere.

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Re: Z Film Real or Fake?

Post by Richard Hocking on Sun 28 Jul 2013, 10:51 am

Richard Gilbride wrote:That Steve Osborn testimony may be read at:

http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/arrb/index71.htm

I've also found the story convincing, going on memory here, in The Man Who Knew Too Much (?) of H.L. Hunt employee Paul Rothermel saying that Zapruder showed up at Hunt's estate sometime around midnight to drop off a copy of his film. Meaning there was a 4th copy actually made at Jamison, the optical print shop, on top of Zappy's 3 signed and attested copies. 

I really see Zappy as tangentially involved in the plot, in the sense that someone strongly encouraged him to bring his camera to that pedestal and keep filming no matter what.

I've pondered at times that a copy of the "other film" went to the estate of D.H. Byrd, who lived in the McMansion-style University Park in North Dallas. Then it went to his descendents, since he died in 1986. French journalist William Reymond claims to have seen it and I'd guess it was either through a Byrd or Billy Sol Estes contact.

Another copy went to Air Force Intelligence (I surmise) which might explain Rich DellaRosa's claim. Milicent Cranor said she saw one while working in a back room at NBC in New York. Scott Myers saw one in Texas but I couldn't guess where. Greg Burnham's viewing I'm not familiar enough with. Apologies as I can't recall the 6th viewer right now but have the name written down somewhere.
Homer McMahon?
William Kelly wrote a piece that discussed a film of the assassination going to the Hawkeye works, and then being analyzed by Homer at NPIC on the evening of the assassination.  Homer's earliest description was of 6-8 shots fired from 3 different directions.

Daniel Marvin  (The Unconventional Warrior, 2002)
Jack White and Steve Thomas have both posted their belief that Marvin had seen the other film while in Special Warfare Training at Fort Bragg.  I have no further references on Marvin ...

Dan Rather's description of the assassination after he viewed a film on 11/22/63 leads me to believe he may have seen a film other than the Zapruder film.

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Re: Z Film Real or Fake?

Post by Guest on Mon 29 Jul 2013, 8:39 am

Thanks on that, Richard. I found my old notepage but it's missing the name of Greg Burnham and whoever was the 6th viewer. Homer McMahon is a great candidate. Reading p. 457 of The Great Zapruder Film Hoax, which is a Doug Horne NPIC Report on the Zapruder Film in 1963, it says that McMahon was under the impression (from film courier, SS agent Bill Smith) that the film he was given was an amateur movie. It wasn't specifically called the Zapruder film. Smith had brought it down from Rochester (Hawkeyeworks) because the NPIC had better enlarging equipment. 
 
He recalled it was a double 8 on Kodachrome. And distinctly recalled it was UNSLIT. If I remember correctly, a film has to be slit to make a copy with an optical printer. 

In any case, his description of 6-8 shots and 3 directions stretches the imagination of even the most imaginative conspiracy theorist, looking at the Z-film as it is today. It sure sounds like he was watching a different and higher-quality film.

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