The lineup for the JFK conference in Pittsburgh

From the PR Newswire via Sacramento Bee: “Experts Gathering to Mark Historic 50th Anniversary of JFK Assassination.”

The speakers at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh on Oct 17-19 include:

  • Oliver Stone, director of the Academy-Award winning film JFK and director/narrator of Untold History of the United States
  • Dr. Robert N. McClelland, professor emeritus at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, who served as one of Kennedy’s attending physicians at Parkland Hospital
  • David Talbot, author of the provocative 2007 book, Brothers: The Hidden History of the Kennedy Years, and founder and former editor in chief of Salon.com
  • Dr. Cyril H. Wecht, testified in 1978 before the U.S. House Select Committee on Assassinations, during which he was the only one of a 9-member panel of forensic pathologists re-examining the JFK assassination to disagree with the single-bullet theory; served as a consultant on JFK
  • Mark Lane, a criminal defense attorney and author of the pioneering 1966 work, Rush to Judgment, among other books on the subject
  • Dr. Josiah Thompson, a private investigator and author of the influential 1967 micro-study of the assassination, Six Seconds in Dallas
  • Robert K. Tanenbaum, an attorney and expert legal commentator who served as deputy chief counsel to the U.S. House Select Committee on Assassinations.

 

 

13 comments

  1. Photon says:

    How can the syllabus describe Jim Dieugenio as an ” economics and history teacher” when he never got a degree in either? Or apparently in anything else?
    I hope that some of these guys take question without the usual “that’s irrelevant, we need to move on” answers common at these things.
    Sabato seems to be the only one not a conspiracy theorist. Why no opposing views?

    • D. Olmens says:

      Jim DiEugenio is a history teacher? The conference program mentions that he’s giving a talk on JFK’s foreign policy. I’ve heard him speak about this on BlackOpRadio and I didn’t find his views on the topic persuasive.

      I think it’s useful to ask about the background of researchers, particularly in terms of their training and education. If someone writes about history, in my view it’s valid to ask what background and qualifications they have to do so.

      I find it interesting how many of the researchers are single issue specialists, or have a background in an unrelated field. They’re often not published or known for work on topics aside from the assassination. For me this raises questions about perspective and balance.

      When evaluating the work of an author, in addition to examining the approach, methodology and conclusions, in my view it’s also useful and important to consider the writer’s background and the beliefs, influences and worldview they bring to the table.

      • Bill Kelly says:

        You must have a high view of Gerald Posner then.

        • Bill Kelly says:

          I’m scheduled to make a presentation on the AF1 Radio transmissions, which I’ve personally transcribed. Besides my research on the JFK assassination, I have published two regional history books, both unrelated to the assassination – “300 Years at the Point” and “Birth of the Birdie” – a history of golf. I have a BS degree in History and English.
          And I think that Jimmy D knows a lot about the assassination and is qualified to discuss it, even though he often has a snide attitude that rubs people the wrong way.

          • D. Olmens says:

            Thanks for sharing that Bill.

            I think Jim DiEugenio would be a far more effective advocate for his viewpoint if he tempered his approach somewhat.

        • D. Olmens says:

          I’d have a higher opinion of Posner if he hadn’t been caught up in several plagiarism scandals. If I remember right he popped up recently in a Vanity Fair article about the Harper Lee lawsuit. The case against Posner was dismissed, but to be involved in that saga in the first place doesn’t reflect well on him in my view.

      • Mitch says:

        The best books on the assassination were written by writers who meet your obviously reasonable criteria. Namely, the books of Newman, Summers, Fonzi, etc.

        I hear very little criticism of their work, and the criticism I do hear is usually poorly understood information lifted off of John McAdams page.

        The worst books on the assassination fit your bill as writers out of their depth. I wish many of those books had not been written.

    • mitchum22 says:

      No opposing-views bugs you, huh? You must really cry into your beer over no opposing-the-Warren Report-views on ABC, NBC, PBS, CBS, NYT, WaPo, WSJ, Fox, Time, Newsweek and NPR.

      That must bug you too, right?

      • D. Olmens says:

        I don’t really see it that way. The consensus historical view, the paradigm if you like, is that Oswald was responsible. As problematic as the official version might be in places, in the absence of a credible alternative version, the media will reflect the consensus view.

        If a media organisation was provided with credible, persuasive and supported evidence of a conspiracy do you really think it wouldn’t be splashed across the front pages? At the end of the day newspapers need readers, TV channels need viewers, and this would be a truly massive story.

        I suspect that the media has been chastened by past experiences with conspiracy theories. The Operation Tailwind fiasco is one example. The tangle of often contradictory theories, wildly varying credentials of researchers and sea of information that surrounds the JFK assassination has “proceed with extreme caution” written all over it.

        If you were the Editor of Time Magazine for example, would you put your credibility, career and your publication’s reputation on the line to report a conspiracy theory if you didn’t have something absolutely conclusive? I certainly wouldn’t. The consequences of getting it wrong would be catastrophic.

    • Lisa Pease says:

      Jim DiEugenio has a master’s degree in History. I don’t know why this defamatory comment was posted.

  2. photon says:

    If Dr. Wecht was the the only member of a nine panel team of forensic pathologists to disagree with the single bullet hypothesis I would consider that theory undeniable fact, as Dr. Wecht’s view is very clearly outside of the mainstream forensic pathology position on the JFK assassination.
    Will anybody have the courage to ask Dr. McClelland if he ever moved, or even touched the head of JFK?
    Will anybody have the courage to ask Dr. Aguilar when was the last time he did a physical examination?
    Will anybody ask Groden why he couldn’t identify O.J. Simpson’s shoes?

  3. Bill Kelly says:

    I’ll ask McClelland if he touched JFK – and Gary if he does exams, and we all know why Groden couldn’t id OJ’s shoes – he was paid not to. But hey, that makes him an expert outside the JFK field, right?

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