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THERE MAY BE PROOF
OF AN ORDER TO SHOOT
More details below. Please scroll down.
Please scroll down for schedule of May 4, 2007 events.
PAGE RELAUNCHED APRIL 30, 2005, UPDATED FREQUENTLY
You know, you see these bums, you know, blowin' up the campuses. Listen, the boys that are on the college campuses today are the luckiest people in the world, going to the greatest universities, and here they are, burnin' up the books, I mean, stormin' around about this issue, I mean, you name it - get rid of the war, there'll be another one.
37 Years After
4 Students Were
Slain, We're Still
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Kent State Massacre Tape: 'Right Here, Get Set! Point! Fire!'
Survivors of the 1970 massacre at Kent State are calling on officials to reinvestigate what happened on May 4 1970 when the National Guard shot four students dead at an anti-war rally. On May 1, 2007, one of the survivors – Alan Canfora – released an audio tape from the day of the shootings. Canfora said by closely listening you can hear a National Guard officer issue the command "Right Here, Get Set! Point! Fire!" Following the command, the sounds of shots being fired can be heard. The FBI has never determined whether an order to shoot was given. Eight members of the National Guard were acquitted of federal civil rights charges four years after the shootings. Canfora said the reel-to-reel audio recording was made by a student on campus. [Click HERE for details and AUDIO]
Who owns the title of "The Guy Who Exposed Jayson Blair?" In this corner is Howard Kurtz, noted media critic for the Washington Post. In the other is Mike Gardner, not-so-noted cub reporter for the Daily Kent Stater. "For the record, Mr. Kurtz did not break the Jayson Blair story; Mike Gardner of the Daily Kent Stater did."
Cleveland Scene 9/07/03
Renovations to begin in Franklin Hall as JMC prepares for relocation
Earlier: The reconstruction of Franklin Hall is under way. Faculty and architects are in the planning stages of the project that will create a new building for the School of Journalism and Mass Communication.
Daily Kent Stater 9/24/03
Franklin Hall renovations create JMC's future home
Earlier: The School of Journalism and Mass Communication will have a little more leg room in the future. Regardless of how much money the state gives, the school is moving forward with the Franklin Hall renovations, which will be complete no later than Fall 2007.
Daily Kent Stater 11/18/04
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The campus bell tolled Friday for two tragedies separated by a generation as Kent State memorialized its four dead at the hands of Ohio National Guardsmen and the 32 killed at Virginia Tech by a gunman.
The Kent State Victory Bell rang 32 times at midmorning for last month's victims of the Virginia Tech shooter, who took his own life, then rang again at midday for the annual commemoration of the May 4, 1970, shootings at the Ohio college.
The afternoon ceremony on the 37th anniversary of the Kent State shootings, which happened during a Vietnam-era war protest, had the feel of an anti-war rally as speakers denounced the U.S. war in Iraq and called for student activism to halt it.
"This has got to be a peace movement," said anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan, who choked up as she recounted the death of her son in Iraq. "What an honor it is to be welcomed into the Kent State family."
Fellow anti-war activist Tom Hayden urged students to lobby against the war.
The Virginia Tech commemoration was scheduled to coincide with the time of the second of two fatal attacks there April 16.
"I choked up. It's an emotional thing," said Sarah Lund-Goldstein, a Kent State senior and part of the campus group that organized the commemoration. "We feel it's very important to understand that a grieving campus is not just one from 37 years ago."
A crowd estimated by police at 200 to 300 sat on a sun-drenched, grassy hillside and heard speakers memorialize the Kent State students.
Mary Ann Vecchio, 51, of Miami, the subject of a Pulitzer Prize-winning photo showing her with arms outstretched over the body of shooting victim Jeffrey Miller, told the gathering her experience on the campus that the day in 1970 will always be with her.
"Time has passed. Time goes on. We miss you here today," she said, invoking Miller's memory. "I'll always be here at Kent for you."
A survivor, Alan Canfora, said this week that an analysis of static-filled audio from the 1970 campus shootings revealed a military order to open fire. It has long been a mystery what prompted the 13 seconds of gunfire.
After the shootings, the FBI concluded it could only speculate on whether an order was given to fire. One theory was that a Guardsman panicked or fired intentionally at a student and that others fired when they heard the shot. Eight Guardsmen were acquitted of federal civil rights charges.
Canfora, 58, one of nine students wounded in the shooting, located the tape in Yale University's archives about the event. He has called for new federal and state investigations.
REUNION: Victims wounded in the 1970 Kent State University shooting that killed four students are reunited during the dedication of an historic marker at the site of the shootings May 2, 2007, in Kent, Ohio. Shown, from left, are Mary Ann Vecchio, hand outstreached, Dean Kahler, center left, Alan Canfora center right, James Russell, background center, and Joseph Lewis, right hand outstretched. All, except Vecchio, who is the woman in the iconic image kneeling over slain student Jeffrey Miller, were shot. [AP Photo/The Plain Dealer, Lynn Ischay]
MEMORIAL: Students walk past the site of the 1970 shootings at Kent State University in Kent, Ohio. Alan Canfora and several other survivors of the May 4, 1970 shootings that killed four students, released an audio tape made by a student on that fateful day. [AP Photo/Tony Dejak]
The May 4 tape Beyond the static and high-pitched sounds, what exactly?
Many who witnessed the shootings at Kent State University 37 years ago recall a flank of National Guardsmen turning in unison and then firing into the crowd. Were the soldiers following orders? The question has haunted recollections of that tragic day, four young people shot dead.
Now Alan Canfora has come forth with a copy of a tape recording (digitally enhanced), arguing the words ``Right here,'' ``Get set!'' ``Point!'' and ``Fire!'' can be heard. ``The evidence speaks for itself,'' Canfora declared this week. ``There was an order to fire.''
The trouble is, amid the static and high-pitched sounds, little can be detected with any certainty, let alone clear commands. Perhaps an independent assessment, aided by new technology and short of the federal investigation Canfora has proposed, is the avenue to answering this lingering question, for completing a portion of the historical record.
What should be recalled is how invested Canfora has become in that dreadful day, his penchant well-known for imagining conspiracies. Remember, too, that nothing of this kind has surfaced in all the examinations of the past, including court cases, though many have wondered about a silent command.
All these years later, it would be most valuable to learn what led to the gunfire (beyond the carelessness of James Rhodes, then the Ohio governor). It is doubtful that Alan Canfora has heard the truth.
May 4 marker dedicated State honors historic KSU site with plaque near Taylor Hall
Thirty-seven years after Allison Krause, Jeffrey Miller, Sandra Scheuer and William Schroeder were killed near the spot, a historical marker recalling the May 4, 1970 shootings at Kent State University that resulted in their deaths and the wounding of nine other students was officially dedicated Wednesday.
The double-sided Ohio Historical Marker titled "Kent State University: May 4, 1970" was put in place recenlty in the shade of a tree between Taylor Hall, an academic building, and Prentice Hall, a dormitory. It was officially made a part of the KSU landscape Wednesday, with Tom Grace, Dean Kahler, Joe Lewis, Jim Russell and Alan Canfora, who were wounded in 1970, and numerous former and current KSU students, faculty and community members looking on.
Dr. Kathy Stafford, vice president for university relations and a senior at KSU in 1970, helped lead the committee that applied for the marker. She said the drive to get it installed began with an "eloquent" letter in 2005 from Grace to then-KSU president Carol Cartwright, seeking a "more permanent narrative in a very prominent place at the site" of the shootings.
Grace spoke Wednesday about how "Kent State not only belongs to Ohio but to the nation."
"We can read this plaque to gain a better understanding of our history," Grace said.
According to KSU President Lester Lefton, the marker "embraces the significance of how May 4 has seeped into the fabric of Kent State ... it brings to life the words inscribed on the May 4 memorial: Inquire. Learn. Reflect."
He said May 4, 1970 holds a significant place in the history of the state, and has been the catalyst for change at the university, leading to a focus on civil discourse, a model for the teaching of tolerance and diversity.
The marker contains information both on the buildup of the Vietnam War that led to protests, anti-war rallies and the burning of the campus ROTC building two days before the shootings.
AT THE PAGODA: Two students walk toward the pagoda at Kent State University in Kent, Ohio, Tuesday, May 1, 2007, past the spot where Ohio National Guard troops fired on student anti-war protestors on May 4, 1970. Survivors of a 1970 Ohio National Guard shooting that killed four Kent State students during an anti-war protest released a recently uncovered audio tape on Tuesday that they said clearly reflects a military order to fire on the demonstrators. [AP Photo/Tony Dejak]
Kent State Shootings Audio Fuzzy To Some
Not everyone who listened to a recording of the National Guard opening fire on students protesting the Vietnam war at Kent State heard the same thing.
At a news conference in Kent, Ohio, Tuesday, Alan Canfora played a CD he said was copied from a reel-to-reel tape recorded by a student who placed a microphone out his dormitory window.
A New York Times correspondent said although there was a lot of static, it was possible to hear someone shout "Point"; Canfora claims the full sequence says: "Right here. Get set. Point. Fire."
The sound of 67 shots being fired over a 13-second period is then heard, during which four students were killed and nine others were wounded.
Kent State graduate and current KSU Associate Professor Carole Barbaro told the Cleveland Plain Dealer she hadn't heard the same things Canfora had at the news conference, but said it is important for Department of Justice officials to scrutinize it further.
"If the tape is verified, we can put the blame on the person who gave the order to shoot," she said.
Eight guardsmen were acquitted of charges in 1974.
Letter to the editor
Kent State case is 'buried deep, real deep'
May 2, 2007
I am a resident of Ohio and an alumnus of Kent State University. I was a junior when the Kent State Shootings occurred on May 4, 1970. The 11 p.m. News on WKYC-TV3 showed an alarming film segment of a student with a gun waving above his head and running toward a group of Campus Police/Ohio National Guardsmen. He was out of breath, but shouting that: "I had to shoot, I had to shoot".
The scene then switched to an ambulance arriving on campus. I knew who the student was with the gun. I called the FBI Office in Cleveland the next day and gave them a ton of information on illegal and unlawful activities this individual was involved in as a student/informant/photographer since 1968 at Kent State.
The FBI said they would get back to me -- they never did. Instead they concealed the informant's tracks thoroughly. The footage of the film with audio, as I described to the FBI disappeared and has yet to surface again -- anywhere.
As the case was pieced together by media and investigative authors, the FBI/Kent Campus Police informant was the probable catalyst of the Kent State shootings, according to student and National Guard witnesses.
After repeated requests to governmental sources asking the FBI to "come clean" on what they did as a result of my voluntary testimony to them on May 5, 1970, they have remained silent and so have all elected officials both federal and state. I have submitted packages of evidence, film, photographs, and testimonies to them regarding the FBI/informant/photographer and his grave actions on May 4th, but they will not even acknowledge the information that was sent to them including certified and registered mailings.
A friend of mine who is an attorney in the Akron, Ohio area got my package of indicting information and contacted two close friends who work for in the FBI. They personally got back to him within two weeks in January 2006 -- and they told him that the Kent State case is "buried deep, real deep."
New May 4th Documentary filming
for the National Geographic Channel
"Raw History" Six one-hour episodes employing rare pictures, video and other information to uncover new insights into iconic events. Among the subjects the series will cover are Iwo Jima, the assassination attempt on President Ronald Reagan and the shooting at Kent State University. "You'll find the truth is more complex than the conventional wisdom," Michael Cascio, senior VP of special programming at NatGeo, said. The show is scheduled to air in the third quarter of 2007.
:: TVWEEK.COM, 4/16/07
37th Annual May 4th Commemoration
KEYNOTERS: Tom Hayden and Cindy Sheehan are scheduled to speak.
MAY 3, 2007
7:30 p.m., Symposium, KIVA Auditorium
The May 4 Task Force and The Symposium on Democracy present: Tom Hayden
11 p.m., Silent Candlelight March, The Commons
Participants gather at the Victory Bell on the KSU Commons between 10:30 and 11 p.m. and proceed to the key locations connected to the events of May 4, 1970. The walk is approximately 1.3 miles and is wheelchair and stroller accessible.
Participants sign up for 1/2 hour vigils in each of the four cordoned-off spaces where students died May 4, 1970. To sign up for a vigil, please email the May 4 Task Force May4TaskForce@yahoo.com or telephone 330-672-3096.
All-Day Display, "Eyes Wide Open", Commons
For the past two years, the May 4 Task Force has brought large scale representations of U.S. servicemen and women who have lost their lives in the Iraq and Afganistan wars. This display, created by the American Friends Service Committee, uses boots to represent the number of lives lost. For more information, visit http://www.afsc.org/eyes/.
Noon, "The First Casualty of War is TRUTH", 37th Annual Kent State May 4 Commemoration, Commons
Cindy Sheehan, mother of Casey Sheehan, KIA in Iraq.
Rosemary Palmer, mother of Lance Corporal Edward “Augie” Schroeder, KIA in Iraq. Tom Hayden, founding member of the Students for a Democratic Society. Gene Young, witness to Jackson State shootings, May 14, 1970. Joe Lewis Jr., wounded at Kent State, May 4, 1970. Jim Russell, wounded at Kent State, May 4, 1970. Tim Ryan, U.S. Representative for the 17th District of Ohio.
Was the shooting justified? - That was the question on the May 4 Task Force members' minds when they met with retired Lt. Gen. Charles Fassinger, one of the commanding officers of the Ohio National Guard in May 1970.
April 5 was the first time a member of the National Guard has met with the May 4 Task Force.
Fassinger answered the Task Force members' questions for two hours at the meeting. Associate provost Laura Davis and Carole Barbato, associate professor of speech communication, arranged for Fassinger's visit to Kent State. Davis and Barbato both teach a May 4 class and interviewed Fassinger to document the perspective of a key member of the National Guard.
Jim Mueller, Kent State alumnus and former co-chair of the May 4 Task Force, said people at the meeting kept coming back to the question of whether the National Guard was justified in shooting at the students.
Davis was a Kent State student during May 4, 1970, and witnessed the shootings. She said the Guard only has the right to fire in two possible situations: If its members were given an order to shoot, or if they felt their lives were in danger.
"From evidence that I observed and from what I have read since then and from photographs that I've viewed, the guards were not in imminent danger," Davis said. "There was no immediate risk to the guards' lives."
On May 4, 1970, Fassinger was standing behind the troops who fired their weapons.
"I have no reason ever to doubt, (that) as a group, they felt what they said they felt," Fassinger said. "They had a right to fire if they felt their lives were in danger."
:: Daily Kent Stater 4/16/07
Naming the source 40 years later
On the Dec. 11, 2006 New York Times op-ed page, USC Annenberg professor emeritus Murray Fromson for the first time discloses the source of his 1967 report for CBS that a top American general considered the Vietnam War unwinnable. The report from Saigon, which also ran under Johnny Apple's byline in the NYT, was the first to suggest that senior officers believed the U.S. could lose. It enraged President Lyndon Johnson and Gen. William Westmoreland, the Army's chief in Vietnam, and altered the politics of the war. Fromson describes the scene then and what has changed:
The general pledged us to absolute confidentiality. Later, when Johnny and I compared notes to ensure we had understood him correctly, both of us were stunned. His article was published 24 hours later. Mine, in the era before satellites, reached CBS News in New York days later. Here, in essence, is how we quoted the general for our reports:
This new series takes you on a journey to visit the places, the people and events that have shaped the largest and most vocal generation in American history: The Baby Boomers. Our resident historian, Steve Gillon, tells the stories of the unforgettable events that defined this generation and changed the world. The Vietnam War was perhaps the most defining element of the Boomer generation. By 1970 thousands of lives had already been lost in a faraway conflict that seemed to have no end. And then, on May 4th, the war came home when four students were killed in an anti-war protest at Kent State.
Kent State picks Tulane University executive as next president
Kent State University on Tuesday picked a Tulane University executive as its president.
Lester Lefton, 59, will replace Carol A. Cartwright, who on Oct. 5 announced her retirement as president after 15 years. He will take over July 1.
His base salary will be $350,000.
As provost and senior vice president for academic affairs at Tulane, Lefton is responsible for overseeing the university's 10 deans and more than 500 faculty. He administered graduate school, libraries and international programs.
Lefton was involved in getting Tulane functional again after Hurricane Katrina.
Kent State had 23,622 students at its main Kent campus last academic year and 35,863 students when adding the students at its seven regional campuses. :: Associated Press via Akron Beacon Journal 5/09/06