THE FRAMING OF LEE HARVEY OSWALD: OSWALD, RECENTLY A MARINE, DID NOT TIE THE STRING ON THE BLANKET THAT SUPPOSEDLY HELD THE “KILLER” RIFLE
by Judyth Vary Baker
The blanket that held the “killer” rifle was used to “prove” Lee Harvey Oswald shot President John F. Kennedy. Persons who were known to have seen and touched the blanket are Lee Harvey Oswald, his wife Marina, their baby daughter June, Michael Paine (estranged husband of Ruth Paine and an “Oswald’ lookalike) and Ruth Paine (stepped on the blanket to show it was empty, to the [police—but how did she know it was empty?).
The blanket supposedly looked like this when tied up with the rifle inside:
Photo shows blanket tied at both ends with string.
The knot used was a “granny knot” plus a “bowtie” (shoestring) knot, difficult to see in the WC photo. Oswald was a Marine who passed all his training, which included tying knots properly –important for anyone in the Navy or the Marines
Eventually the Warren Commission questioned FBI experts about the blanket and the string that tied up the blanket at both ends. In the testimony below, the important parts are in bold face and underlined like this:
TESTIMONY OF PAUL MORGAN STOMBAUGH beginning at 4H56...
The CHAIRMAN. The Commission will come to order. The purpose of today's hearing is to take the testimony of Paul Stombaugh and James O. Cadigan. Mr. Stombaugh is a hair and fiber expert with the FBI, and Mr. Cadigan is a questioned documents expert with the FBI. They have been asked to provide technical information to assist the Commission in its work.
Mr. EISENBERG. Did you notice anything else about the blanket which you would like to relate, Mr. Stombaugh?
Mr. STOMBAUGH. The blanket exhibited much wear.
[NOTE BY JVB: below, the “granny knot” is made to look—unless you are alert—as if it is a hard knot to untie instead of being a very easy knot to untie. This is either an accident of the stenographer or a deliberate misrepresentation. The word “not” has been added to make the information correct, below, as indicated by [not] ].
Mr. EISENBERG. In your opinion, would the blanket have made a secure package wrapped in the way and manner that it appeared to you?
Mr. STOMBAUGH. Yes, sir; it would have. With the crease at fold "A," had it been folded down, it would have made a very snug and secure package containing some type of item in it.
Mr. EISENBERG. Any distinctive accidental markings on it?
Mr. STOMBAUGH. No; I found none.
Mr. STOMBAUGH. No; I found none.
Mr. EISENBERG. What kind--was it tied in a knot?
Mr. STOMBAUGH. Yes, sir; it was tied in a granny knot, and also a bow knot.
Mr. EISENBERG. Could you illustrate that for us? You are holding up a piece of string?
Mr. STOMBAUGH. This is another piece of string, not the original.
Mr. EISENBERG. Not the original.
Mr. STOMBAUGH. A granny knot is a common knot, tied with two simple thumb knots. It is [not ] a very hard knot to open as opposed to the boy scout knot, or the square knot rather, which is tied in this manner. This knot is very easy to open because all one has to do is to pull one free end of it and the other free end slides out.
Mr. EISENBERG. You are referring to the so-called "boy scout" knot?
Mr. STOMBAUGH. It is actually not a boy scout knot but a square knot.
Mr. EISENBERG. And you tie that left over right, right over left, is that the formula? [E. refers to square, not granny knot]
Mr. STOMBAUGH. Yes; left over right and right over left.
Mr. EISENBERG. How do you spell that, by the way?
Mr. STOMBAUGH. G-r-a-n-n-y.
Mr. EISENBERG. The granny knot, Mr. Stombaugh, is this a common or an uncommon knot?
Mr. STOMBAUGH. It is a very common knot. I believe that knot is tied more than any other knot because it is right over right, right over right, and it is usually used by people wrapping packages who want it tied securely so the package will not come open.
Mr. EISENBERG. Did you say there was also a bow knot?
Mr. STOMBAUGH. Yes, sir.
Mr. EISENBERG. Could you illustrate that?
Mr. STOMBAUGH. This is the type of knot we use when we tie our shoe strings. It is made by forming a loop with the one free end, and wrapping the other free end around it and pulling it through.
Mr. EISENBERG. Is that a hard or an easy knot to slip out, Mr. Stombaugh?
Mr. STOMBAUGH. This is very easy, because you just take one of the loose ends and pull it and the knot falls apart.
Mr. EISENBERG. What was the relationship between the granny knot and the bow knot?
Mr. STOMBAUGH. I don't know. I have seen this numerous times, on numerous different occasions when one would either tie a granny knot or a square knot and follow it up with a bow knot. The granny knot would be to secure the package so it would not come loose. The bow knot is a temporary knot tied by one who wants the string to come off easily.
Now why they would tie a granny knot and follow this up with a bow knot I don't know, unless they had some long loose ends which they wanted to slacken up, shorten up, rather, so as they would not be hanging down.
Mr. EISENBERG. The Exhibit Paine No. 2 is tied into a knot at this point. Can you tell us what kind of a knot that is?
Mr. STOMBAUGH. This was a simple bow knot which I put into it.
In the above statements, we clearly see that the ends of the string were still long, so whoever tied the ends then made a bowknot to bring the ends shorter. Mothers who tie their children’s shoelaces do this, of course, so the child will not trip. Ruth Paine had a young son who wore laced shoes. Those interested in reading more about Ruth Paine and the blanket are invited to read my blog entry of June 3, 2011 at: http://judythbaker.blogspot.com/2011/06/lee-harvey-oswald-and-blanket-bag-and.html
Ruth and Michael Paine’s connections with the blanket are established and suspicious.
The question: did Lee Harvey Oswald tie the knots in the string?
Answer: Every Marine learned to tie the Square Knot, Bowline, Figure-Eight Retrace, and the Round Turn with Two Half Hitches. People who have not been in the Navy or Marines may not know how to tie a reliable knot and are most likely to use the granny knot.
What is a granny knot?
an incorrect version of a square knot in which the bights cross each other in the wrong direction next to the end, so as to produce a knot that is insecure.
Wikipedia: “The reef knot is commonly taught as left over right, tuck under then right over left, tuck under. The granny knot is the first step repeated twice, left over right, tuck under. This is a very common mistake made by people learning to tie a reef knot.”
I knew Lee Harvey Oswald. And I knew Lee knew how to tie a reef knot: as mentioned in my book, Me & Lee, he had tied string across the two posts of my bed at 1032 Marengo, upon which he had hung balloons and a “welcome home” sign written in crayon. He used reef knots: he did not use granny knots. I’m the one, after all, who finally had to untie the string and take the sign down! I had training of my own in tying knots after years in Girl Scouts. The knots Lee tied were reef knots. So, when I came across the testimony (above) while researching the blog that eventually became a paper about the blanket, that “granny knot” information took a few days to sink in. Then I realized that I was looking at evidence—real evidence—that Lee had been framed.
NO Marine would have used granny knots to tie that blanket.
We had already established in the blog article that Lee, who adored his little girl June, would not have used the blanket Marina said Junie “loved to play with” in which to wrap a rifle.
Knots are so important in the Navy, Marines and CAP (Civil Air Patrol) that everyone enrolled is expected to learn them. Lee Harvey Oswald was taught how to properly tie knots when a young teen. He was in the CAP and learned knot-tying there even before he entered the Marines and got yet more course instructions on knot tying, which is used on boats and ships as well as in rescue and search and rescue operations. The USNSCC manual has an entire chapter (#7) devoted to knots. Lee Harvey Oswald tied knots under military-style supervision for more than three years and was barely 24 in November, 1963.
Other names for the granny knot show it’s the kind of knot an uninstructed person uses:
Granny knot, False knot, Lubber’s knot, Calf knot, Booby knot
Should not be used as a bend. Inferior to reef knot for binding purposes, it can release suddenly and unpredictably.
Conclusion: yet another indication that Lee Harvey Oswald was framed for the murder of JFK, in this instance with the help of someone who did not know how to make a proper knot -- possibly a woman.