The House Select Committee On Assassinations
The most distinct difference was that the House
Committee concluded there were two shooters, as opposed to just Oswald. They considered different evidence when looking at the assassination, and came up with a conclusion that considered more theories. However, the committee’s conclusions were rather broad and vague at some points, and could have benefitted from more research in those specific areas.
One of the best things that the House Committee’s report did was look at the investigative process following the assassination. They acknowledge what the FBI, CIA and Warren commission did right, while also recognizing that each agency had shortcomings while investigating the assassination. What the
Committee seems to do is set out to prove that the Warren Report was wrong. They outline all the ways that the initial investigation went wrong, explaining
how the Warren Commission failed to investigate properly the idea of a possible conspiracy. The majority of their findings in this section focus on the shortcomings of the former investigation, as opposed to doing original research and coming up with new conclusions or re-affirming the old ones.
Because they set out to essentially disprove the Warren Commission, the findings of the House Committee are incredibly vague. While the Warren Report clearly spells out its conclusions, the House Committee says what could have happened, but spends more time spelling out what they ruled out. They also took
a very loose definition of conspiracy: instead of defining what type of conspiracy they believed had taken
place, they said that Oswald was probably involved in some sort of conspiracy. They did not define it any further. While it may have been difficult to do original research because it happened so long ago, however they should have done some more extensive research to explain the conspiracy theory. It definitely would have given more credibility to the report.
One of the biggest discrepancies between the Warren Report and the House Committee’s report was the House Committee’s assertion of a second shooter
on the grassy knoll. Using scientific acoustic evidence they were able to place a fourth shot that would have come from the grassy knoll. They said that Oswald
fired three shots from the Texas Book Depository while someone else fired one from the grassy knoll. The sound evidence of a fourth shot seems to make sense.
It is debated though, because you have to line up recordings and analyze them in a very specific way in order for the fourth shot to have come at about the same time as the other three. Some more evidence besides the one police recording might also lend more
credibility to the report.
The findings behind the second shooter theory do not dispute the Warren Commission’s single bullet theory, the idea that one bullet was fired by Oswald and hit both JFK and Governor Connally. This is one of the most unbelievable parts of the Warren Report, and the fact that the House Committee did not address this issue, nor did they attribute any of the shots that actually hit the President to the second shooter, makes the report seem flimsy. They do not look at the
evidence that it seems Kennedy was shot from the front, nor do they acknowledge that it seems improbable Kennedy and Connally were shot by the same bullet.
With more extensive research, and a conclusion that did more than just discount the Warren Commission the report may be slightly more credible. That being
said, the House Committee did do a more thorough investigation of the assassination. Other investigations should be as independent and thorough as this, instead of as messy as the Warren Commission.