February 22, 2010
Recently, Dartmouth Professor Hany Farid claimed in the Huffington Post that the famous (or infamous) backyard photo of Lee Harvey Oswald—the photo in which he holds a Communist newspaper in one hand and a rifle in the other—is not a fake. This implies that the photo was not patched together to set up Oswald as the Commie patsy and lone Kennedy gunman by the FBI, the same FBI which finances Farid’s laboratory and research. Smell a rat?
Farid chose to represent only one photo from a series of four faked photos and to deal only with the anomalies of its shadows and lighting. Oswald had said, when shown one of these photos, that it was his head pasted on someone else’s body. And the face has a square chin, not Oswald’s pointed chin; the finger tips of the right hand are cut off; and the figure is too short to be Oswald when the newspapers are used as an internal ruler. You can even see an insert line between the chin and the lower lip! But none of this impressed Professor Farid.
Farid purposely points to the fact that the lighting of the face in the photo would seem to be coming from overhead, yet Oswald’s fairly long body shadow is cast to the right on the ground and seem to be coming from an afternoon sun. The fact that logic would indicate two sources of lighting is blown away by Farid himself, who claims we as human beings do very poorly at perceiving shadows and their sources.
He even claims he himself is not good at it, even though he is an expert working in an esteemed university, underwritten by the FBI. It’s this kind of doubletalk that makes me look through his argument like the Emperor’s Clothes and see that nothing is there.
Farid’s so called proof is explained to us in a video clip, Why JFK Assassin Photo wasn’t Faked, with Farid side by side with his computer, on which there is a “simulation” of Oswald’s head next to the supposedly “real-life” but already doctored head of Oswald with a square chin. So we are already in fantasyland.
But the mystification continues as Farid lauds the quality of the shadow Oswald’s nose casts under it as well as the shadows under the eyes and his lips.
Okay, so he already told us that’s the effect of top-lighting, a light source directly overhead. But what about the shadow that slants off on the ground to the far right? That is side-lighting, presumably by the sun. Top-light would make a thin rim of shadow around Oswald’s body, either front, back, or sides, depending on how accurately the light source lined up with the body.
Try, for instance, to move your desk-light over your phone or desk object. Notice, the rim of light varies slightly as you move the top light’s overhead angle. This same desk light though does not cast a large shadow of the phone unless it is moved considerably, i.e. to the side. Farid would tell us it’s our eyes that are not working right, including his.
I would claim the body shadow comes from that sinking sun and that those light sources exist because the photo was reconstructed on a “ghost mat” that came from the Dallas Police Department. It is a blank cut-out mat of Oswald’s body, in which pieces are reinserted. Sadly for the DPD those pieces were shot with the light at various angles. That’s what causes the conflicting shadows in the backyard photos, not my or his impairment.
Even this basic concept, that angles of shadows are created by the varying positions of light sources, is violated in Farid’s “modeling by computer,” in which everything is possible. Perhaps Farid must have Photoshop 2020, which provides a look into the future of bending light to create shadows wherever you wish to them to be. We really never are told what makes Farid’s “modeling” create this unreality. But we are told his findings will be published in a journal called Perception, which will explain it all. That wouldn’t be related to Huxley’s Doorways to Perception, his journey into the use of hallucinogenic drugs, would it? That might explain why the good professor is not seeing clearly.
In the landmark book on photo fakery in the JFK assassination, The Great Zapruder Film Hoax, edited by Dr. James Fetzer, McKnight Professor Emeritus at the University of Minnesota Duluth, with a half-dozen leading scientific and technical experts, you will find an abundance of photographic “representations” of Oswald’s face and body from before and after the Kennedy assassination for the purpose of disinformation and confusion, including a veritable Oswald stand-in, so that Lee/Harvey/Oswald could be in more than one place at the same time.
- A d v e r t i s e m e n t
Fetzer, by the way, has published more than 100 articles and 20 books on the philosophy of science, computer science, artificial intelligence, and cognitive science. He has also edited the highly acclaimed Assassination Science and Murder in Dealey Plaza, which include extensive discussion of the fabrication of evidence about the death of JFK.
Given that wealth of information, Farid references none of it, or that of any other authority. He does tell us that he works with law enforcement, which the New York Times verified as the FBI. Farid claims he has shied away from “conspiracy theorists” over the years, who have sought information from him. But this means that he comes to the table of objectivity with a bias against independent thinkers, whether they are authors, journalists, scientists or technicians.
So how objective is Farid really? Dare I say he’s a “photo patsy”? If he had considered more than one photo in the set, it would have been obvious they are faked, because they have the same face with the same expression and the same shadows across all four, which is a photographic impossibility. So Oswald had it right!
Remember, in the making of patsies, we need some kind of verifying information from so-called experts, even if they are on the government payroll, like for instance NIST, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, who have their very own opinion of what made the Twin Trade Towers fall, which conflicts with some 1,000 architects and engineers, who submitted a petition to Congress for a new 9/11 investigation Friday, February 19, 2010, from three different cities, including New York City, where they met with press at Ground Zero at 10 A.M., the site of the 21st Century’s major crime on American soil.
Returning to the JFK Assassination, the major crime on American soil of the 20th Century, The Great Zapruder Film Hoax scrupulously documents how photographs and the entire film has been manipulated to support the government’s lone-gunman claim, according to which Oswald alone managed to kill Kennedy and seriously wound the then Governor of Texas Connally with three shots fired in about six seconds into the limousine, which witnesses reported was actually brought to a halt. The Lincoln was sent to Ford for a complete refurbishing, including a new windshield to remove a hole near its center, where one of the first shots transited en route to JFK’s throat, which otherwise would have falsified the official account.
What’s more, despite the handicap of a bolt action, WW II Italian Army, Mannlicher-Carcano mail-order rifle, and despite the fact that another bullet hit a sidewalk and that a piece of cement rebounded, slightly wounding a bystander in the cheek, we are supposed to award our complete credence to Arlen Specter’s “Magic Bullet” theory, which has one slug passing through Kennedy’s neck from the rear to enter and exit Connelly as well. My god! How low an opinion of our intelligence do our intelligence agencies have?
This brings me back to Farid and his “modeled-shadow-theory” that the backyard photo of Oswald is not a fake, a fraud, a hybrid of intelligence hacks. In fact, Farid, as a scientist, has violated the most basic scientific requirement of all: to present all available relevant evidence. I mean, we are not talking here about some triviality not worth the effort, but the purported assassination and proof of the “lone gunman” of President John F. Kennedy.
Are we to take Farid and his computer-simulated “model” on faith or as a single source flash of government-sponsored truth? Where is the proof that he bothered to read any of the research that established the photos were faked? There is no indication that the professor even conducted a search of the literature about his latest subject, including Jim Marrs’ Crossfire: The Plot that Killed Kennedy, another standard text, which Oliver Stone used as a major source for his landmark film, JFK.
Fetzer and Marrs were so concerned they co-authored The Dartmouth JFK-Photo Fiasco, published it and sent it to the President of Dartmouth. But his representative has washed his hands clean of the whole matter by claiming that this “is a disagreement among scholars, and must be settled by them.” How many professors of late have been tossed off campuses for contrarian beliefs? How many should be sacked for research as sloppy as this?
The backyard photos were and continue to be the province of noted scholars and authors. And the victim was a major political figure, whose death changed the course of national policy and perhaps of world history.
How does one man, using one photo, one anomaly (shadows), one bit of computer modeling and one unsupported theory, i.e. people don’t see shadows, get away with this hoax with such faint resistance? Has Dartmouth been compromised? Is it also working for the FBI?
These questions pass through your mind when resistance folds so quickly. This is the signature of being bought and not of thought—conscious, conscionable thought. Farid found the one questionable feature of a set of faked photographs that he thought he could plausibly “explain away”, hoping that no one would catch his sleight-of-hand.
The authenticity of the photographs was also addressed by Robert Blakey, who chaired the House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA). He acknowledged then that if the photos had been faked, it would not only imply that Oswald had been framed but, because of the technical sophistication involved, it would also indicate the existence of a larger conspiracy to cover up the crime, and to support the “lone gunman” scenario.
Thus, I would seriously suggest that you, dear Professor Farid, go back to your modeling board and read at least the Fetzer and Marrs books. Of course, take a look at the canon of other outstanding studies of the JFK assassination, as if you were writing a thesis for an advanced degree.
Photographic fakery undermines serious, independent scholarship. That should be one lesson you learn not to do. That’s n-o-t to do. As to the FIB—excuse me, the FBI—its business should be stopping frauds not creating them. Caveat emptor!