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RandySF

(56,065 posts)
Sun May 1, 2016, 04:50 AM May 2016

Watching the television show '11.23.63' and I still have one nagging question about Oswald's gun.

This discussion thread was locked as off-topic by tammywammy (a host of the General Discussion forum).

How did Oswald, with a bolt-action rifle, manage to get off two rapid and accurate shots that killed JFK and wounded Governor Connelly? Honestly, I know nothing about guns and thought I would pose the question.

36 replies = new reply since forum marked as read
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Watching the television show '11.23.63' and I still have one nagging question about Oswald's gun. (Original Post) RandySF May 2016 OP
He would have had to practice, but it's possible jmowreader May 2016 #1
Three shots in 17 (???) secs. longship May 2016 #2
I think it was three shots within a space of 6 seconds. RandySF May 2016 #4
No, I believe it was 17 secs from first to third. longship May 2016 #6
Warren Commission Report said 3 shots, 5.6 seconds, including the infamous "Magic Bullet," Chasstev365 May 2016 #8
Harvey would have trained with an M1 Garand which had no bolt... Human101948 May 2016 #7
Well, he also practiced with the gun he used. longship May 2016 #10
Can you direct me to the forensice that were very clear? Human101948 May 2016 #14
Check out Gerald Posner's book, Case Closed. nt longship May 2016 #17
Apparently his book isn't indisputable... Human101948 May 2016 #23
Well, if Oswald didn't do it, who in Sam Hell did? longship May 2016 #25
British in World War One 1939 May 2016 #3
The SMLE family doesn't utilize a "straight pull" bolt as the Ross, Schmidt Rubin... Marengo May 2016 #19
And now for something completety different. Wilms May 2016 #5
Correct. Top sniper, White Feather, could not duplicate the shot. yourpaljoey May 2016 #28
I have talked with a former police officer who was a marine. roamer65 May 2016 #35
There have been volumes written about the shots that day. gordianot May 2016 #9
The rifle was a Mannlicher-Carcano... gregcrawford May 2016 #11
In my opinion, some conspiracy theories are total bullshit. Warren DeMontague May 2016 #12
And what about his pistol? rgbecker May 2016 #13
So the local cops were involved in the conspiracy, too? 30Draw May 2016 #15
there was no way in the world he made those shots. KG May 2016 #16
thank you, agreed yourpaljoey May 2016 #29
Here's an interesting take on it Orrex May 2016 #18
Witnesses heard the last two shots almost on top of each other. At least two rifles used. Zen Democrat May 2016 #20
pull trigger, work the bolt aim and pull the trigger again. ileus May 2016 #21
Bigger question One of the 99 May 2016 #22
Incorrect assertion. stopbush May 2016 #31
It's 22!!!! 11.22.63!!! Jeez-o. And there are scores of books for your query. Get cracking. WinkyDink May 2016 #24
This message was self-deleted by its author rjsquirrel May 2016 #26
Have you ever read the Warren Commission Report? stopbush May 2016 #27
I wonder why this is posted when the later House Committee on Assassinations took issue with much of Todays_Illusion May 2016 #32
Had you read the HCA report, you would know that they CONFIRMED stopbush May 2016 #33
It's been duplicated several times in reenactments. NutmegYankee May 2016 #30
what station is that on?...eom mrmpa May 2016 #34
Locking tammywammy May 2016 #36

jmowreader

(50,332 posts)
1. He would have had to practice, but it's possible
Sun May 1, 2016, 05:18 AM
May 2016

During World War I, one of the European armies - I believe it was the French but don't hold me to it - wanted its troops to fire bolt-action rifles as quickly as possible. They taught their soldiers to cycle the bolt (which ejects the spent brass and loads a fresh round) with their rifles against their shoulders.

longship

(40,416 posts)
2. Three shots in 17 (???) secs.
Sun May 1, 2016, 05:31 AM
May 2016

There are two gaps between the three shots, about eight seconds each. Most CT adherents divide by three, which is a mistake. Oswald cycles the bolt twice, not three times.

Oswald was trained in the military to shoot and IIRC earned sharpshooter, so there's no reason to suspect that he could not have shot JFK.

Anyway, all the forensic evidence supports that he was the assassin, no matter how many more shooters were in Dallas that day. Both recovered bullets were shot from his gun.

Hope this helps.

RandySF

(56,065 posts)
4. I think it was three shots within a space of 6 seconds.
Sun May 1, 2016, 05:38 AM
May 2016

I mistakenly said two shows. But he made three shots with one completely missing the car. I guess the first shot was already in the chamber.

longship

(40,416 posts)
6. No, I believe it was 17 secs from first to third.
Sun May 1, 2016, 05:43 AM
May 2016

That would make it eight seconds between shots. Again, two bolt cycles.

My best.

Chasstev365

(5,191 posts)
8. Warren Commission Report said 3 shots, 5.6 seconds, including the infamous "Magic Bullet,"
Sun May 1, 2016, 05:56 AM
May 2016
 

Human101948

(3,457 posts)
7. Harvey would have trained with an M1 Garand which had no bolt...
Sun May 1, 2016, 05:52 AM
May 2016

The M1 is an air-cooled, gas-operated, clip-fed, semi-automatic, shoulder-fired weapon. This means that the air cools the barrel; that the power to cock the rifle and chamber the succeeding round comes from the expanding gas of the round fired previously; that it is loaded by inserting an en-bloc (i.e., it goes into the rifle's action and functions as part of the rifle) metal clip (containing eight rounds) into the receiver; and that the rifle fires one round each time the trigger is pulled.[7]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M1_Garand

longship

(40,416 posts)
10. Well, he also practiced with the gun he used.
Sun May 1, 2016, 06:22 AM
May 2016

And eight seconds is plenty of time to cycle the bolt and sight.

And remember both recovered bullets were fired from his gun. The forensics are very clear on that issue. He was the only assassin that day, no matter how many other guns were on the grassy knoll, or wherever. He also killed Ofc. Tippit.

 

Human101948

(3,457 posts)
14. Can you direct me to the forensice that were very clear?
Sun May 1, 2016, 07:15 AM
May 2016

I have seen some reports that the fragments were "consistent" with having been fired by Oswald's rifle. Haven't seen anything about anything more definitive.

longship

(40,416 posts)
17. Check out Gerald Posner's book, Case Closed. nt
Sun May 1, 2016, 08:14 AM
May 2016
 

Human101948

(3,457 posts)
23. Apparently his book isn't indisputable...
Sun May 1, 2016, 09:04 AM
May 2016

He asserts proof of a core hit because FBI analysis revealed "traces of [sic per reviewer] lead with a trace of antimony" (p. 325) in the damage. What he omits destroys his theory. He does not explain that a bullet core has several other metallic elements in its composition, not two, rendering his conclusion false. He further neglects to inform the reader that by May 1964 the damage had been covertly patched with a concrete paste and that in August, not July, 1964, the FBI tested the scrapings of the paste, not the damage, which gave the two metal results.

He says the second shot transited JFK's neck and caused the nonfatal wounds striking Connally at Zapruder film frame 224 where Connally is seen turned to his right, allegedly lining his body up with JFK's neck, thus sustaining the single bullet explanation. He finds proof that a bullet hit then in Connally's lapel that was flapping in that one frame as it passed through. But he does not conform to fact. Wind gusting to twenty miles per hour that day ruffled clothing. And, there is no bullet hole in the lapel but in the jacket body beneath the right nipple area.

Posner crowns his theory with the certainty of science by using one side of the computer-enhanced studies by Failure Analysis Associates of Menlo Park that his text implies he commissioned. The firm, however, lambastes his use as a distortion of the technology that it had developed for the American Bar Association's mock trial of Oswald where both sides used it.

http://www.assassinationscience.com/wrone.html

longship

(40,416 posts)
25. Well, if Oswald didn't do it, who in Sam Hell did?
Sun May 1, 2016, 09:24 AM
May 2016

That's where the conspiracy theories all go off the rails.

And Posner's and Bugliosi's books are definitive, no matter what the CT's make up.

Lee Harvey Oswald shot JFK and Connelly.

1939

(1,683 posts)
3. British in World War One
Sun May 1, 2016, 05:34 AM
May 2016

with the Lee-Enfield could fire pretty quickly though the rifle did have a "straight pull" bolt.

The US range qualification with the M1903 Springfield had two "rapid fire" elements compared to four "sustained fire" elements.

A friend of mine (since deceased) was on the USMC rifle marksmanship team for a number of years and fired many different weapons. He had fired the Mannlicher-Carcano and in a bull session once told me that the weapon was fully capable of its its performance in Dallas and that the only limitation would have been the shooter himself.

 

Marengo

(3,477 posts)
19. The SMLE family doesn't utilize a "straight pull" bolt as the Ross, Schmidt Rubin...
Sun May 1, 2016, 08:36 AM
May 2016

or Austrian M95. What makes the SMLE action a bit different from most other manually operated bolt action rifles in military service at the time is that it is a "cock on close" design.

Your friend was right about the Carcano though, I owned one and found it surprisingly accurate.

 

Wilms

(26,795 posts)
5. And now for something completety different.
Sun May 1, 2016, 05:40 AM
May 2016

With an actual reference!

Simulating the JFK Assassination

For the benefit of the Warren Commission, expert riflemen from the US Army and the FBI attempted to duplicate the assassin’s task, using the rifle that had been discovered on the sixth floor of the Texas School Book Depository.

Even after fixing some of the gun’s mechanical problems, and despite firing at stationary targets from an easier vantage point, they failed to achieve the combination of accuracy and speed demanded of the lone gunman: two hits out of three, within about six seconds (see Warren Commission Hearings, vol.3, p.446 and pp.403–10).

http://22november1963.org.uk/lee-harvey-oswald-marksman-sharpshooter




I have no idea what anyone else is talking about or where they got there "info". This piece of the story is hardly a secret.

yourpaljoey

(2,166 posts)
28. Correct. Top sniper, White Feather, could not duplicate the shot.
Sun May 1, 2016, 10:07 AM
May 2016

"Retired Gunnery Sergeant Carlos Hathcock is likewise skeptical of Oswald's alleged shooting feat. Hathcock is a former senior instructor at the U. S. Marine Corps Sniper Instruction School at Quantico, Virginia. He has been described as the most famous American military sniper in history. In Vietnam he was credited with 93 confirmed kills. He now conducts police SWAT team sniper schools across the country. Craig Roberts asked Hathcock about the marksmanship feat attributed to Oswald by the Warren Commission. Hathcock answered that he did not believe Oswald could have done what the Commission said he did. Added Hathcock:

"Let me tell you what we did at Quantico. We reconstructed the whole thing: the angle, the range, the moving target, the time limit, the obstacles, everything. I don't know how many times we tried it, but we couldn't duplicate what the Warren Commission said Oswald did". (KILL ZONE, pp. 89-90)."

roamer65

(36,729 posts)
35. I have talked with a former police officer who was a marine.
Sun May 1, 2016, 10:39 AM
May 2016

He is into marksmanship as well. He says the idea that Oswald managed to use a Mannlicher-Carcano in that manner is total BS.
The guns used were more than likely a German Mauser and/or Remington Fireball.

gordianot

(15,220 posts)
9. There have been volumes written about the shots that day.
Sun May 1, 2016, 06:02 AM
May 2016

...on every aspect imaginable. There is even a theory that a Secret Service early model M16 misfired spraying the car with bullets.

gregcrawford

(2,382 posts)
11. The rifle was a Mannlicher-Carcano...
Sun May 1, 2016, 06:23 AM
May 2016

... and not known for its accuracy. The barrel bedding in the forestock was decidedly inferior, and that had a direct effect on the weapon's accuracy. A "documentary" a couple of years ago that was intended to support the single shooter theory posited that Kennedy's sudden backward jerk after the second round struck him was the result of an involuntary muscle response. Not likely. He had already been hit in the neck, severing the spinal cord. No "muscle reaction" could be possible. Those unfamiliar with basic ballistics, or even Newton's Laws of Motion, might believe that bullshit, but the Zapruder film shows, beyond the remotest shadow of a doubt, a body reacting to an impact from the FRONT, i.e. the infamous Grassy Knoll.

The contrived and tortured logic of that so-called documentary reminded me of the classic howl of last-ditch desperation, "Are ya gonna believe me, or your lying eyes?"

(SFX: Mic drop)

Warren DeMontague

(80,708 posts)
12. In my opinion, some conspiracy theories are total bullshit.
Sun May 1, 2016, 06:29 AM
May 2016

And, in my opinion....

some of them most definitely are not.

rgbecker

(4,791 posts)
13. And what about his pistol?
Sun May 1, 2016, 07:02 AM
May 2016

What mail order catalog did he get the pistol he used to kill the policeman from? Any pictures of him holding that one? Just wondering. Or did the police provide that one on the ride from the movie theater to the jail?

 

30Draw

(46 posts)
15. So the local cops were involved in the conspiracy, too?
Sun May 1, 2016, 07:27 AM
May 2016

KG

(28,748 posts)
16. there was no way in the world he made those shots.
Sun May 1, 2016, 07:31 AM
May 2016

yourpaljoey

(2,166 posts)
29. thank you, agreed
Sun May 1, 2016, 10:08 AM
May 2016

Orrex

(62,993 posts)
18. Here's an interesting take on it
Sun May 1, 2016, 08:29 AM
May 2016
Check out entry #5.

Cracked.com is routinely dismissed here, but the writing is surprisingly solid, and they're no fans of conspiracy theory. Their takedown of 9/11 trutherism is fantastic, for instance.

Zen Democrat

(5,901 posts)
20. Witnesses heard the last two shots almost on top of each other. At least two rifles used.
Sun May 1, 2016, 08:49 AM
May 2016

ileus

(15,396 posts)
21. pull trigger, work the bolt aim and pull the trigger again.
Sun May 1, 2016, 08:58 AM
May 2016

I don't know the exact time in the JFK case, but anyone should be able to get off two accurate shots in a half-second or so.

One of the 99

(2,280 posts)
22. Bigger question
Sun May 1, 2016, 09:03 AM
May 2016

How come Oswald had no powder burns on his hands or face when taken into custody?

stopbush

(24,308 posts)
31. Incorrect assertion.
Sun May 1, 2016, 10:16 AM
May 2016

Read the WCR or Bugliosi.

 

WinkyDink

(51,311 posts)
24. It's 22!!!! 11.22.63!!! Jeez-o. And there are scores of books for your query. Get cracking.
Sun May 1, 2016, 09:09 AM
May 2016

Response to RandySF (Original post)

stopbush

(24,308 posts)
27. Have you ever read the Warren Commission Report?
Sun May 1, 2016, 10:05 AM
May 2016

Apparently not, because all of the evidence - and there is a mountain of evidence - presented in that report answers these oft-asked questions. You'd think that after 60 years, people would consult that report, rather than dismissing it out of hand.

To answer your question:

1. Oswald practiced with the rifle he used to kill JFK, as testified by his wife, who was the one who took the pictures of him holding the rifle

2. Oswald achieved the rank of sharpshooter in the USMC, higher than a Marksman but not an expert. The kill shot at 80 yards would have been easy for a shooter of his skill. He was able to score a 48 out of 50 on shots fired at targets at 200 yards while in the USMC. The USMC testified to the WC that he was an above-average shooter when compared to USMC norms and an expert shooter when compared to Joe Public.

3. Expert shooters employed by the Warren Commission were able to duplicate Oswald's three shots with accuracy in as little as 4.6 seconds, using Oswald's own rifle, misaligned scope and all

4. Balistics tests to the recovered bullet and fragments matched Oswald's rifle to the exclusion of every other firearm in the world.

5. The so-called pristine bullet that was found on the stretcher at Parkland hospital matched Oswald's rifle through ballistics tests and came from a lot of bullets manufactured by the Western Cartridge Company that Oswald had purchased through mail order.

6. The rifle Oswald purchased from a firm in Chicago was traced to him via sales records within 24 hours of the shootings.

7. The so-called magic bullet wasn't magic at all. It performed as any fully jacketed round would behave. Its trajectory was a relatively straight line that went through JFK and Connelly. It did not stop and turn midair as asserted in Oliver Stone's ridiculous fiction.

There's so much evidence to support Oswald as the lone gunman. Read Bugliosi's *Reclaiming History.*

Todays_Illusion

(1,209 posts)
32. I wonder why this is posted when the later House Committee on Assassinations took issue with much of
Sun May 1, 2016, 10:17 AM
May 2016

the Warren Commission's report. Not to mention the very high quality research that has been done since the release of additional documents from those years have pretty much concluded what what Oswald said that day, "I'm the patsy," is true.

Dealey Plaza was a shooting gallery that day with bullets from everywhere but Oswald's gun.


http://www.archives.gov/research/jfk/select-committee-report/summary.html

stopbush

(24,308 posts)
33. Had you read the HCA report, you would know that they CONFIRMED
Sun May 1, 2016, 10:26 AM
May 2016

the findings of the Warren Commission in the main.

The ONLY thing they disputed was the idea that Oswald was the lone gunman. They were ready to agree with that as well, until 11th-hour testimony was presented by two scientists who asserted that a dictabelt recording made from a police motorcycle implied there were four shots fired, not three. That "evidence" has since been conclusively refuted by proof that said motorcycle was not in a position to record what they said it recorded. That evidence is clear through photographic and video evidence that clearly shows that the motor cycle was 170 yards away from the intersection of Houston and Elm where those two scientists said it had to be to make the recording. The pictures and videos don't lie.

Case closed, as Posner said.

BTW - what "high quality research" are you referring to?

Good article here: http://jfkfiles.blogspot.com/2007/12/holland-dj-vu_27.html

NutmegYankee

(16,153 posts)
30. It's been duplicated several times in reenactments.
Sun May 1, 2016, 10:13 AM
May 2016

There was a short pause between the second and last shot to aim the headshot.

The first was a miss, bolt then operated, and next shot was compensated for whatever caused the miss and it hit the presidents back and then the Governor. Then the bolt is operated again and there is a short pause for accurate aim, and then head shot.



mrmpa

(4,033 posts)
34. what station is that on?...eom
Sun May 1, 2016, 10:32 AM
May 2016

tammywammy

(26,582 posts)
36. Locking
Sun May 1, 2016, 10:48 AM
May 2016
Discuss politics, issues, and current events. Posts about Israel/Palestine, religion, guns, showbiz, or sports are restricted in this forum. Posts about the Democratic primaries, conspiracy theories and disruptive meta-discussion are forbidden.

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