Wednesday, February 23, 2011

                     TRIANGLE OF FIRE - A REVIEW

                         John Delane Williams

     Triangle of Fire by Bob Goodman [1] by any accounts is a flawed book. The numerous running together of words and sentences demonstrates the lack of an editor for this self-published book. The organization (or lack thereof) is highly unusual. The 225 page manuscript has 23 chapters. The first chapter is unnamed, and runs almost half the book. Goodman claims to be an eyewitness and hints that there is proof of this assertion, but the evidence is not forthcoming. That is of little matter, since he makes no claim as an eyewitness that hasn't already been given. However, this book does contain a few nuggets, and they are worthy of our attention.

     Goodman spent much of his life away from Dallas and removed from the concerns of November, 1963. He was working with commercial computer applications in El Paso. Getting the bugs out of an application was seemingly enough to drive him back to Dallas. He had always felt a personal danger in Dealey Plaza. As if to tempt fate, he attended the COPA convention in 1991. He gained the resolve to work in Dealey Plaza for a year to come to terms with the Kennedy assassination, and to make good on a promise he made to a woman he met while working at the Rose Hill Cemetery near Dallas.  There, he met Marguerite Oswald. He said that if he could, he would try to help the truth come out someday.

     Goodman's research technique was certainly unique; he would casually talk to visitors as he hawked an assassination newspaper with 60 different theories of the assassination. If someone told him there was a great book to read, he'd ask that they tell him  about the book rather than read it himself. Being at the plaza every day, he eventually met a variety of people as they educated him about the assassination. One person showed him the storm drain behind the fence and its probable significance. He met Ed Hoffman [2] and became acquainted with his experience in Dealey Plaza. He also met Dr. Charles Crenshaw [3], one of physicians who treated President Kennedy at Parkland Hospital. Crenshaw maintained that Kennedy was shot from the front.

     Goodman discovered the crisscross directory for Dallas 1963. He had a particular interest in the Dal-Tex building and its occupants. He found the Dallas Uranium Company, whose offices were strategically located on the third floor and had a clear view for a shooter intent on assassinating the president. Goodman was told the company was owned by H.L. Hunt, whom Goodman suspects being involved with the JFK assassination. Evidence emerged that two people had indicated they entered the Dal-Tex building and went to the third floor in search of a phone. One of these persons, Eugene Hale Brading (a.k.a. as Jim Braden) has been identified as a suspicious character (see Shaw & Harris [4]). Goodman chooses to include four photographs of this person, who is made to sound suspicious and is never named (alas, few of the people Goodman talked to are ever named) but the impression is left that he just might be the person reported to be dark complexioned in a dark plaid jacket with horned rimmed glasses who was taken into custody shortly after the assassination.  Goodman contacted a person who was suspected to be this individual, who told Goodman that he was under legal counsel not to answer questions. The person photographed was Larry Florer. [5]; also see Trask [6]. The only mystery was one Goodman tried to create.

   Goodman moved into an apartment at 1026 N. Beckley, the last apartment of Lee Harvey Oswald. This seemed to increase Goodman's paranoia regarding his own safety rather than lend significantly to his investigation. This, unfortunately, seemed to be a pattern. Goodman ran across several good leads, but they were not followed far enough.
                     The Minutemen

     Goodman's theory is that the assassination was planned and paid for by Texas Oil interests who were also right wingers who were motivated both by concerns of keeping the status quo in terms of race relations and a continued inflow of money, unabated by the possible loss of billions of dollars due to the Kennedy idea of reducing or eliminating the oil depletion allowance. The assassination itself was supposedly done by the Minutemen. An FBI raid of an armed camp in Lake Pontchartrain on July 31, 1963 was said to have been a raid on anti-Castro Cubans and Minutemen. In this regard, there is one photograph of Oswald that is unexplained as to its contents. The fairly well known clinched- fist photograph appears to show Oswald wearing an ornate ring on his ring finger. (p. 191); also see Hurt[7], and Groden [8]. Recall that Oswald left his wedding ring at home in a teacup. The symbolic meaning of this was that Oswald knew that his life was drastically going to change and that his marriage was not likely to resume. In most pictures of Oswald taken at the Dallas police station, his ring finger is empty. Where did this ring come from? Does it have any special meaning? Why is the ring not on any inventories of Oswald's belongings? Where did the ring go? A woman from Louisiana told Goodman that the ring was a Minuteman ring, and that Oswald was attempting to tell the world who killed Kennedy. The woman claimed to have the ring in her possession. It was not clear if it was Oswald's ring or one like it.

                        Triangle of Fire
     There were said to be four shooters (following the information from Raymond Broshears, a roommate of David Ferrie, 1965-66:
              1. The storm sewer opening;
              2. The grassy knoll, behind the stockade;
              3. the Dal-Tex building; and
              4. the Texas School Book Depository.
Actually, Broshears mentions the storm sewer opening, the grassy knoll. He indicated that Oswald probably shot from the sixth floor, as a divisionary tactic. Broashears does not specifically cite the Dal-Tex Building as a shooter’s location. Rather, he said that Ferrie told him there were shooters at four locations, “ of them fired from the sewer opening along the parade route, another from the grassy knoll, and someone from behind.[9] If there were four shooters, then, strictly speaking, this should be called "a quadrangulation of fire".

Groden’s Reference to the Dal-Tex Building as a Shooter’s Location

Robert Groden posited that three shots were likely to have emanated from the Dal-Tex Building. Groden delineates between 8-10 shots that day in Dealey Plaza. [10] The first shot, taken at Zapruder 150-152 (Z150-Z152) was said to have been made from the Dal-Tex Building. The first shot missed the car, but both the President and Governor Connally reacted to it. [11] The fourth shot was thought to have been from either the “Oswald window” or the Dal-Tex Building, around Z224, but probably from the Dal-Tex Building, according to Groden. This shot apparently hit President Kennedy in the back; some have posited it as the “magic bullet.” [12] Two additional shot were posited to have emanated from the Dal-Tex Building. One of these shots was said to have caused the injury to James Tague. [13]
             The Owner of the Dal-Tex Building

     The owner of record of the Dal-Tex Building at the time of the assassination was said to be Morris Jaffe. Morris Jaffe was indeed a very interesting fellow who bears further investigation. Jaffe succeeded Billie Sol Estes in Estes’ empire, buying it for a song. He also was the person who delivered money to Lyndon Johnson to insure Johnson’s being on the 1960 ticket with John Kennedy. Jaffe also started Costco, Inc. [14]

     It may be that Goodman will turn out to be right in several of his assertions. If his right, it will be due more to luck and intuition than to careful research.


1. Goodman, B. (1993).Triangle of Fire. San Jose CA: Laquerian       Publishing Company.
2. Hoffman, E. & Friedrich, R, (1996).Eye Witness. Grand Prairie     TX: JFK Lancer Productions and Publications.
3. Crenshaw, C,A. with Hansen, J. (1992).JFK: Conspiracy of         Silence. New York: Signet.
4. Shaw,J.G. & Harris, L. (1992). Cover-Up: The Governmental         Conspiracy to Conceal the Facts about the Public Execution of     John Kennedy. Austin, TX: Thomas Publications.
5. Warren Commission Testimony and Exhibits. (1964). XIX, p.476.
6. Traske, R.B. (1994). Pictures of the Pain: Photography and the    Assassination of President Kennedy. Danvers MA:Yeoman Press 
7. Hurt, H. (1985). Reasonable Doubt: An Investigation into the      Assassination of John F. Kennedy. New York: Holt, Rinehart &      Winston, follows p. 138.
8. Groden, R.J. (1993). The Killing of a President: The Complete     Photographic Record of the JFK Assassination, the Conspiracy,     and the Cover-Up. New York: Penguin Books, p. 168.
9. Russell, D. (1992). The Man Who Knew too Much. New York:           Carroll & Graf. p. 165.
10. Groden (1993) p. 40.
11. ibid., p. 20.
12. ibid., p. 28.
13. ibid., p. 40.
14. Williams, J.D. (2003). Why is Morris Jaffe Interesting? Dealey Plaza Echo, 7, 2, 30-39.

Manuscript first written in 1998; revised in 2011.

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