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Why So Many People Think This Famous Photo Is Fake

Perhaps no historical event is rifer with conspiracy theories than the assassination of President John Kennedy. One of the key pieces of evidence conspiracy theorists point to is a seemingly strange photo of assassin Lee Harvey Oswald that, if real, is tremendously incriminating. This fascinating video takes a look at the photo and why so many people think it is fake and provides a modern analysis of its authenticity. 

Coming to you from Vox, this great video takes a look at one of the key pieces of evidence in the Kennedy assassination, a photo of Lee Harvey Oswald taken in his backyard, holding Marxist newspapers in one hand and the rifle he used to kill the president in another. In a way, it seems almost too perfect: the assassin holding the murder weapon in a posed photo found hours after the event. And for many people, it was too perfect. Oswald himself claimed it was a fake before he was murdered by Jack Ruby, and many conspiracy theorists point to apparent issues in the image ranging from inconsistent shadows to Oswald's chin not matching that of his mugshot. Furthermore, Oswald's pose seems unnatural and unbalanced. However, it turns out that our eyes and brains aren't perfect, and it takes a more sophisticated scientific analysis to come to the proper conclusions. Check out the video above for the full rundown.

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5 Comments

ad ventureous's picture

Maybe a portrait photographer would have thought the nose shadow and body shadow were normal but until the professor took an overhead light and actually did a test it was hard for me to believe they were normal. Cool.

Mike Ditz's picture

The assassination always is kind of interesting.

Lee Christiansen's picture

Initially I thought maybe they could just check the JPEG noise for artefacts... And then my brain cells kicked in. Ha

Michelle Maani's picture

Lighting differences sometimes cause birding enthusiasts to misidentify a bird based on perceived size or color, and the desire to see something that isn't there.

Brian Cover's picture

They were faking photos 50 years ago with what most people today would consider "crude" equipment. The scary thing is that today with Ai and the imaging software that is so abundantly available, "they" can frame anyone today for almost anything they want.