Discussion in 'The Off-topic Lounge' started by Daglord, Sep 12, 2019.
if this doesn't spark some kind of discussion, not sure if anything will.
Oh ffs, I wanted to watch the vid but it’s 1 hour 38 minutes long
Cesar previously worked for Robert Maheu who was a big time CIA guy
Sirhan Sirhan denied parole despite a Kennedy confidant’s call for the assassin’s release
if anyone is interested:
last year's podcast series from Moldea (mentioned above): Episodes – The RFK Tapes
good listen, but there is a lot of controversy with how it ended
on the road all day today but I’ll be back to post! Great thread once again @Daglord
Dude pussed out at the end...was cringey
I enjoyed the ride though
1) The medical examiner reported that Kennedy was shot four times from behind from a distance of 1 to 6 inches, with powder burns on his jacket and head, and all at an upward angle. The fatal shot entered Kennedy from 1 to 1½ inch behind his right ear.
2) All witnesses placed Sirhan in front of Kennedy. Not one witness put Sirhan’s gun muzzle closer than a foot to Kennedy, and most witnesses placed the muzzle at least 3 feet away.
Based on these two facts alone, Los Angeles County coroner Thomas Noguchi wrote in his memoir, “Thus I have never said that Sirhan Sirhan killed Robert Kennedy.”
3) Seven bullets were recovered from six victims, and another bullet was lost in the ceiling space. Sirhan’s gun could hold only eight bullets, but an FBI agent photographed four additional “bullet holes” in the pantry, some with evident bullets embedded. This so worried Los Angeles County officials that, nine years later, they asked the FBI essentially for a retraction. The wood removed from the double entry door frame that contained the marked bullet holes and the ceiling tiles were later destroyed.
An audiotape recorded by Stanislaw Pruszynski, a Polish reporter covering the 1968 presidential campaign for Canadian newspapers, that supported the FBI’s finding was found in the California archives. Sound engineer Philip Van Praag used sophisticated equipment to analyze the tape and found at least 13 shot sounds on the tape. He also found that two pairs of shots came too close together (122 and 149 milliseconds respectively) to have been fired from a single gun. In field tests, a trained firearms expert firing under ideal conditions could only manage 366 milliseconds between shots using the same weapon.
Van Praag also found that five shots were fired opposite the direction of Sirhan’s eight shots, and those five shots – the 3rd, 5th, 8th, 10th and 12th shots in the sequence – which included one of each of the double-shot pairs, displayed an acoustical “frequency anomaly” indicating the alleged second gun’s make and model were different from Sirhan’s weapon.
4) Richard Lubic, a televison producer, was standing behind Kennedy during the shooting, and saw an arm to his right with a gun but could not see who was holding the gun. After Kennedy fell, Lubic knelt to help Kennedy and saw a security guard, Thane Eugene Cesar, with his gun drawn and pointing toward the floor. The Los Angeles Police Department later put enormous pressure on Lubic to change his story. Lubic was visited at home by LAPD investigators, who told him, “Don’t bring this up, don’t be talking about this.”
Thane Cesar claimed he never fired his gun, but it was never tested by any of the investigators. While his service revolver was a .38 caliber, he also owned an H&R .22 caliber revolver which he claimed to have sold prior to the assassination, but Jim Yoder, the man who bought it, had a sales receipt dated three months after the assassination. Cesar also stated that he had been employed with Ace Security for six months, but his employment records indicate he had just been hired.
Though Cesar has often been considered a likely suspect for the second gunman, as he expressed hatred for the Kennedys, investigative journalist Dan Moldea wrote that Cesar submitted years later to a polygraph examination performed by Edward Gelb, former president and executive director of the American Polygraph Association, that Cesar denied any involvement in Kennedy’s assassination, and passed the test with flying colors. Additionally, Sirhan’s current attorney, William F. Pepper (the man who successfully proved the MLK assassination conspiracy in a 1999 civil trial for the King family), does not believe that Cesar is the second gunman.
5) Donald Schulman, a young runner for a local TV station, claimed he saw security guard Cesar fire his gun. Schulman also told the LAPD he saw three guns in the pantry (some authors have mistakenly suggested Schulman wasn’t in the pantry, but LAPD records confirm that he was).
6) Jamie Scott Enyart, a 15 year old high school student, was taking photographs of Robert F. Kennedy throughout the evening. Enyart was standing on a table in the pantry snapping pictures as fast as he could, and watched through his viewfinder as Kennedy twisted and fell to the floor. His were the only photographs that would show exactly where everyone was standing around Kennedy as the shots rang out, and very possibly where the shots came from.
As Enyart was leaving the pantry, two LAPD officers accosted him at gunpoint and seized his three, 36-exposure rolls of film. Later, he was told by Detective Dudley Varney that the photographs were needed as evidence in the trial of Sirhan Sirhan. The photographs were not presented as evidence but the court ordered that all evidentiary materials be sealed for twenty years.
In 1988 Scott Enyart requested that his photographs returned. At first the State Archives claimed they could not find them and that they must have been destroyed by mistake. Enyart filed a lawsuit which finally came to trial in 1996. During the trial the Los Angeles city attorney announced that the photos had been found in its Sacramento office and would be brought to the courthouse by courier from the State Archives. The following day it was announced that the courier’s briefcase that contained the photographs had been stolen from the car he rented at the airport. The photographs have never been recovered and the jury subsequently awarded Scott Enyart $450,000 in damages.
7) The efforts of Congressman Allard Lowenstein (D-NY), assassination researchers Lillian Castellano and Floyd Nelson, Union officer and RFK aid Paul Schrade (who was wounded during the shooting) and the LA County Board of Supervisors and CBS, led to a court-appointed panel to re-examine the evidence. While the panel found no positive evidence of a second gun, it did find that Sirhan’s gun could not be matched to any of the bullets recovered from the crime scene. While the three bullets allegedly retrieved from Kennedy’s neck, William Weisel and Ira Goldstein matched each other, they did not have the original identification marks that coroner Thomas Noguchi swore he etched into them.
8) Sandy Serrano, a Kennedy campaign volunteer, told NBC News reporter Sander Vanocur on live TV about seeing a young woman in a polka dot dress and a male companion who had passed her on a fire escape. They were two of the three who had passed her earlier, going up the stairs, and the third she later identified as Sirhan Sirhan. The woman in the polka dot dress said, “We shot him, we shot him!” Serrano asked whom they shot. The woman said, “Senator Kennedy,” and ran off.
LAPD officer Paul Sharaga was told the same thing by an elderly couple named Bernstein in the parking lot behind the hotel minutes after the shooting, and immediately put out an All Points Bulletin (APB) on the suspects, but it was later cancelled by a superior officer.
A witness in the pantry, Vincent DiPierro, told the LAPD about a woman in a white dress with dark polka dots who seemed to be “holding” Sirhan just before the shooting. Several other witnesses also saw the polka-dot dress woman at various times that evening, and the girl was described consistently by most of the witnesses: dirty blond hair, well-built, with a crooked or “funny” nose, wearing a white dress with blue or black polka-dots.
The police were so interested in this “girl in the polka dot dress” that they asked nearly all the witnesses interviewed whether they had seen anyone fitting her description. But when the story started to gain traction in the press, the LAPD declared that a blond girl on crutches in a bright green dress with yellow lemons dotting it was “the girl in the polka dot dress” and closed the book on this subject.
9) Lieutenant Manuel Pena, who was in control of all “day watch officers” in the Special Unit Senator investigation, and responsible for signing off on every witness interview transcript (many without the name of the interviewing officer), had been in military intelligence in Korea. In November 1967, Pena resigned from the LAPD to work for the Agency for International Development (AID).
Charles A. O’Brien, California’s Chief Deputy Attorney General, told author William Turner that AID was being used as an “ultra-secret CIA unit” that was known to insiders as the “Department of Dirty Tricks” and that it was involved in teaching foreign intelligence agents the techniques of assassination.
FBI agent Roger LaJeunesse claimed that Pena had been carrying out CIA special assignments for at least ten years. This was confirmed by Pena’s brother, a high school teacher, who told television journalist, Stan Bohrman, that he was proud of his brother’s CIA activities.
In April 1968 Pena surprisingly resigned from AID and returned to the LAPD.
Chief of Detectives Robert Houghton asked Chief of Homicide Detectives Hugh Brown to take charge of the investigation into the death of Robert Kennedy, code-named Special Unit Senator (SUS) but he specifically designated Lt. Manny Pena to control the daily flow and direction of the investigation.
10) Lieutenant Enrique “Hank” Hernandez was the sole polygraph operator for the SUS unit, and the final arbiter of the veracity of witnesses (though only those witnesses who claimed to know something that would suggest a conspiracy were forced to take the tests). While no court in America allows the results of polygraph tests to be used as evidence, Hernandez’s polygraph results became the sole factor in the SUS’s determination of the credibility of witnesses.
Hernandez had also worked with AID. During his session with Sandy Serrano, he told her that he had once been called to Vietnam, South America and Europe to perform polygraph tests. He also claimed he had been called to administer a polygraph to the dictator of Venezuela back when President Betancourt came to power.
11) Hernandez was brutal and manipulative in his questioning of witnesses who claimed to have known things that did not fit the lone-gunman theory, badgering them until they changed their stories, as was the case with RFK aid Sandy Serrano. His written reports also significantly changed the testimony of several key witnesses.
12) Sirhan Sirhan has never had any memory of either carrying a gun or shooting Kennedy, but remembered only a “pretty girl” at a coffee urn, and then being choked [after the shooting].
good call. I have a few problems with this book (blanks), but it exposes Maheu pretty well.
can't link the story due to WaPo paywall.
RIP RFK jr
might be the first time someone called bullshit on the RFK & MLK assassinations on air. Lowenstein nailed it here, even calling out Thane Eugene Caeser IIRC.
Allard K. Lowenstein - Wikipedia
Allard Lowenstein was one of the leading advocates, & most vocal, for re-opening the RFK assassination. Great, informative read he penned in the Saturday Review: http://jfk.hood.edu/Collection/White Materials/White Assassination Clippings Folders/Warren Commission Folders/Warren Commission-Reopening/Item 141.pdf
For years, he had his mind...
Lowenstein was later assassinated by a lone gunman in his office. RIP.
5 Lost Photos That Could Have Changed History | Cracked.com
the missing photos:
New Twist in Kennedy Mystery : Photo Negatives of Robert F. Kennedy's Assassination Disappear
forgot about this - August 31st, 2019.
Sirhan Sirhan, assassin of Robert F. Kennedy, stabbed in prison and hospitalized
Good thread. Thank You OP.
thanks Heath. love the avatar.
thanks brother, looking forward to it.
sorry, but a lot of good stuff being dug up today. hadn't seen either of these.
144 views in almost 10 years
Spoiler: the tape is authentic
Just got home - wow a lot of great material /. Gonna spend the night digesting it all!
Great work Dag!
it is going to take me a year to go thru this thread. thanks @Daglord
There's a lot to read here and the video links are really long.
What's the connection between sirhan and Cesar? Why'd they both have guns if Cesar was doing the killing?
If you were going to shoot someone in the back wouldnt you want someone with a gun standing in front of him pulling the trigger at same time?
I get that, but is there a link? They knew each other? Theory is...X put them both up to it because [insert evidence]?
I need a refresher...Daglord has some of the best RFK Jr threads on the net...that is a fact
sorry about that. I love docs.
that's a great question & sparks quite the debate. depending on what book you read, you will get a different opinion. some think Sirhan was shooting blanks, not sure I believe that, but it's the latest book out & pretty well-researched, but that would leave the 13 bullets unexplained.
IMHO, having both Cesar & Sirhan there would guarantee the job is done. I imagine, considering the climate & what happened to his brother, you had one shot to kill a Kennedy. I also think Cesar may have been there as a way to silence Sirhan afterward, but that obviously didn't happen & would have been difficult to pull off.
as far as if they are connected, not that I know of. It appears to me that Cesar was a lot more connected than Sirhan. Lisa Pease claims that she was unable to get anything re: Cesar from a CIA FOIA because his files were still labeled "alive & operational".
the other side from yesterday, Moldea came out pretty strongly defending his work.
to his credit, he is the only guy to interview both Sirhan & Cesar.
response to RFK Jr's accusations:
Spoiler: long read from an RFK group
Dan Moldea researched Cesar's background and interviewed him a number of times. He also got Cesar to take a polygraph (yes, I know there will be some forum members who reject polygraphs).Moldea exhonerates Cesar.Furthermore, it should also be remembered that Cesar volunteered his statement to police - he volunteered handing over his handgun to police.They ignored him.There is nothing in Cesar's background to warrant irresponsible charges against him.The statement about when he sold his .22 is a red herring.At any time during the investigation the police could have demanded to see Cesar's other guns. He had the .22 for quite some time following the assassination - a rather strange thing to do if you are involved in a conspiracy.
As Kennedy was led through the pantry by Ambassador hotel maitre’d , Karl Uecker, ‘Ace’ security guard Thane Cesar was waiting at the double swing doors.Uecker led Kennedy by the right wrist through the crowd which filled the pantry passageway.Cesar held RFK’s upper right arm.Kennedy moved through the pantry shaking hands with excited supporters and hotel workers occasionally breaking loose from his guides.Uecker said, “I took the Senator behind the stage.I was going to turn left to go to the Ambassador Ballroom and somebody said, ‘No.We’re going that way.We’re going to the press room (Colonial Room)’.I said, ‘This way, Senator….’ It was a last-minute decision.I don’t know who made it…The Senator was really happy, and he stopped again and again to shake hands…I got his hand, his right hand and I said ‘Senator. Let’s go now’. (A split second later I) felt something, somebody, moving in…the next thing I heard was a shot.It sounded like a firecracker.Then I heard a second shot.Senator Kennedy’s right arm flew up and he was TURNING (emphasis added)…it looked like the Senator saw what had happened.” The shot that killed Kennedy was fired from a distance of approximately one inch.
In front of Kennedy there were about 20 people.Kennedy was in the midst of about 50 people.As Cesar approached Kennedy when he came through the pantry doors people began pushing and shoving towards the Senator.Cesar began to push them away as Kennedy had difficulty moving forward.
Just before Uecker, Cesar and Kennedy reached the ice machine a couple of meters from the swinging doors.Cesar took Kennedy’s right arm at the elbow as Uecker kept hold of Kennedy’s right hand.Cesar let go as Kennedy began to shake hands with kitchen workers who were standing behind the serving tables.Cesar’s account is crucial because he was certain about how Kennedy was standing at the moments shots rang out. Cesar told Dan Moldea, “A lot of people testified that (Sirhan) was standing this way (with Kennedy facing his assailant).I know for a fact (that’s wrong), because I saw him (Kennedy) reach out there (to shake hands with a busboy) and which way he turned.And I told police about that.”
Although Cesar did not see Kennedy hit or fall he knew the Senator’s head had been turned away from Sirhan’s gun exposing the right rear of his head, the part of his body hit by the fatal bullet .Cesar did not draw his gun until both he and Kennedy had fallen to the floor (Cesar dropped to the floor to avoid being hit by bullets).Cesar’s gun was only out of his holster for about 30 seconds and was not drawn until he began to stand up.
Cesar was in shock.He also had powder burns in his eyes.He immediately ran out of the pantry when he saw Sirhan had been struggling with Kennedy’s aides and returned immediately with other Ace guards, Jack Merrit and Albert Stowers, who had been in the Embassy Room.Merrit entered the pantry with his gun drawn.
The official LAPD version of the shooting concluded that the sequence of shots were as follows:
*The first shot hit Kennedy in the head
*The second bullet went through Kennedy’s shoulder pad, did not harm him, and exited and hit Paul Schrade.
*The third bullet entered Kennedy’s right armpit and lodged in his neck.
*The fourth bullet entered Kennedy’s back and exited through his chest, traveling upwards to the ceiling where it was lost in the interspace.
*The remainder of the eight shots hit the other victims, some as ricochets off the ceiling and walls.
However, as Dan Moldea argued, the reliable witnesses to the shooting all said the distance from Kennedy to Sirhan’s gun was between 1 ½ to 3 feet.Boris Yaro, a photographer for the Los Angeles Times said the gun was within “a foot” of Kennedy’s head. Therefore the first bullet could not have hit Kennedy as his wounds displayed “scorch marks” which could only have resulted from the gun having been placed an inch or so from Kennedy’s head.
And, as Moldea explained, “All twelve of the eyewitness’ statements about muzzle distance is based on – and only on – their view of Sirhan’s first shot.After the first shot, their eyes were diverted as panic swept through the densely populated kitchen pantry.The seventy-seven people in the crowd began to run, duck for cover, and crash into each other.”
One of the most reliable witnesses, Lisa Urso, who was able to see both Kennedy and Sirhan, saw Kennedy’s hand move to his head behind his right ear.As the distance from Kennedy to the gun after the first ‘pop’ was three feet it is likely he had been simply reacting defensively to the first shot fired. Urso described Kennedy’s movements as “…(jerking) a little bit, like backwards and then forwards”.Moldea believes the backwards and forwards jerking, “….came as Kennedy had recoiled after the first shot; he was then accidently bumped forward, toward the steam table and into Sirhan’s gun where he was hit at point blank range.”
Dan Moldea believes the first shot hit Paul Schrade because the Kennedy aide’s last memory was of the Senator smiling and turning toward the steam table.Furthermore, in support of his thesis that the first shot hit Schrade, Moldea quotes ‘key witness’ Edward Minasian as saying, “I saw the fellow (Schrade) behind the Senator fall, then the Senator fell.” Kennedy probably saw Schrade hit because when he himself lay dying on the floor he asked, “Is Paul alright?” If Kennedy had indeed been hit by the first shot he would not have been standing, observing Schrade.The injury to Kennedy’s head was so severe he would not have been able to observe anything once the bullet struck.
Moldea’s thesis is supported by eyewitness Vincent DiPierro who told investigators, “….I stuck my hand out and he shook my hand and I tapped him on the shoulder and said, ‘Congratulations Mr Kennedy’. And I walked with him as far as I could…I stayed as close as I could to him…into what is the kitchen more or less …..and this guy,…he was in a kind of a funny position because he was kind of down…like if he were trying to protect himself from something…he tried to push the people away from his hand…and then he…swung round and he went up on his…tiptoes…and…he shot…and the first shot I don’t know where it went, but I know it was EITHER HIS SECOND OR THIRD ONE THAT HIT MR KENNEDY (emphasis added) and after that I had blood all over my face from where it hit his head, because my glasses…(Martin Patrusky) saw the blood all over my face.”
Moldea’s thesis is supported by one of the key witnesses, Frank Burns, who was identified as one of the five in the group (the others were Karl Uecker, Juan Romero, Jesus Perez, Martin Patrusky) that was closest to the Senator.Although Burns insisted the gun was never less than a foot or a foot and a half from Kennedy he nevertheless described the dynamics of the shooting in such a way to make it entirely feasible that Sirhan’s gun moved to an area inches away from the Senator.Burn’s had suffered a burn on his face which he thought was caused by a bullet passing near his cheek.It was likely a ‘powder burn’ from Sirhan’s pistol.Burns said:
“… I had just caught up with him (in the pantry), and he was a step or so past him.And I’d turned around facing the same way as he turned toward the busboys I was just off his right shoulder, a matter of inches behind him.” After Sirhan fired his gun Burns said, “The noise was like a string of firecrackers going off, it wasn’t in an even cadence.In the process, a bullet must have passed very close to my left cheek because I can remember the heat and a sort of burn.I remember an arm coming towards us, through the people, with a gun in it.I was putting together the burn across my cheek, the noise and the gun and I was thinking, ‘My God, it’s an assassination attempt’.I turned my head and saw the gun and quickly looked back to the Senator and realized he’d been shot because he’d thrown his hands up toward his head as if he was about to grab it at the line of his ears.He hadn’t quite done it.His arms were near his head and he was twisting to his left and falling back.And then I looked back at the gunman, and at that moment he was almost directly in front of me.He was still holding the gun and coming closer to the Senator, PURSUING THE BODY SO THAT THE ARC OF THE GUN WAS COMING DOWN TO THE FLOOR AS THE BODY WAS GOING DOWN.( Emphasis added)”
Burns’ description of the shooting may be the key to an understanding of how the angles of the bullet paths in Kennedy’s body were not consistent with the LAPD’s conclusions that Sirhan’s gun was extended horizontally.
Following the first shot, which hit Schrade, Kennedy was struck by bullets entering his shoulder pad as he was raising his arm to defend himself.Then two shots hit his right armpit – one bullet lodged in the back of his neck.Finally, according to coroner Thomas Noguchi in an interview with Dan Moldea, the fatal head shot occurred.Noguchi said he based part of his explanation on the fact that had Kennedy been hit in the head on the first shot he would not have been able to stand.The head shot would have taken him off his feet immediately. Noguchi told Dan Moldea, “So I believe there were four shots fired at (RFK) at least. The sequence? The shoulder pad shot as he was raising his arm, the two shots to his right armpit, in which one of the bullets lodged in the back of his neck, and , lastly, the shot to the mastoid. This was the shot that was fatal.” (Moldea p312)
Noguchi told Douglas Stein in 1986, “The senator had three gunshot wounds -- a head wound behind his right ear and two through the right armpit. To reconstruct a scenario of the shooting, the gunshot wound to the head wouldn't tell us much, except how close the assailant may have been. We must remember the body is constantly moving, with arms especially changing position. When you examine a body, it's in a horizontal state, so I had to physically and mentally place his body in an upright position to interpret the wound configurations. When a bullet penetrates the skin, it generally leaves a round hole. But the wound to the senator's armpit was not round. To make it round, I had to move the arm fifteen degrees forward after raising it to ninety degrees. I had to do that to understand the relation head wound came from a back-to-front direction; the second wound was on the side, and the third was slightly shifted, indicating he was turning clockwise. ……We know that the three gunshot wounds were at close range.”
Moldea places a lot of misunderstanding about the shooting on the general lack of knowledge about how crowds react during violent incidents.Both conspiracy advocates and official investigators did not understand the dynamics of crowd movement and of how crowds can rapidly change direction and positioning in an instant.This would have been especially true in the Kennedy case, after the first shot when people reacted out of fear, shock and perhaps defensively.People in the pantry were also turning their heads to look for the source of the sounds; on realizing a gun had been fired some would have stumbled, fallen and crashed into objects around them and clashed with others in the crowd.In such circumstances it is easy to see how only a few witnesses placed Sirhan’s gun within a foot or two of Kennedy’s head.It should be remembered that none of the LAPD ‘most credible’ witnesses actually saw Kennedy shot.
Moldea’s conclusions about the movement of the crowd is supported by a statement made by Dr Marcus McBroom to KABC TV Los Angeles reporter Carl George, immediately following the shooting. McBroom said, “I was 5 or 6 people behind him (RFK). He was moving and then stopping. Apparently a little…if I’m not mistaken….a man who was in a work shirt, his hair was all tossled. He sort of approached the Senator from the front and he was sort of smiling and then suddenly it seemed like there was one short and then five shots in quick succession. I do know the crowd panicked and I was thrown back into the ballroom…..”
Furthermore, as Dan Moldea points out, the estimates for the distance of the gun were based on when the first shot was fired.The estimates ranged from 1 ½ feet to 8 or 9 feet.In an instant, following the first shot, the whole dynamics of the crowd changed.As one LAPD detective told Dan Moldea, “…Eyewitness testimony? You talk about 77 people in a room and 12 actual eyewitnesses to the shooting.These are people who were in the wrong place at the wrong time.You’re expecting accuracy in their statements? 12 different eyewitnesses will generally give you 12 different versions of a story…eyewitnesses are not trained or experienced or qualified to make judgements about what they see in such situations.” As Thomas Noguchi observed, “…I believe that the Kennedy assassination must go down in the history of forensic science as a classic example of ‘crowd psychology’, where none of the eyewitnesses saw what actually happened.”
It is unlikely that second-shooters in an elaborate conspiracy would have remained undetected.In addition, conspirators could not have known which route Kennedy was to take when he left the Embassy ballroom stage and entered the kitchen pantry.He was directed along that route by an aide.A number of other routes could have been taken.Conspiracy advocates find this fact irrelevant.They believe that multiple assassins may have been waiting at various locations on the possibility that RFK chose another route.However, there is a central weakness in their thesis.There has simply been no evidence which would have supported it.