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Reply to Keith Skinner from MELVIN HARRIS.

I'm happy that Keith Skinner is using my accolade 'paid henchman' but he should have told you why I dubbed him so. I wanted to quote his assessment of Paul Feldman which ran: "...he may roar and bellow and have strange ideas , but his belief in the genuiness of this journal- and that James Maybrick was Jack The Ripper- is absolute. In his mind, he is right, everybody else, including myself, is wrong...

Now if I had written that I would have been accused of being abusive, but coming from a paid henchman it has the ring of truth. And, as it matches the conclusions reached by others, it is welcome.

Since a henchman is a right arm-man, I too am a paid henchman, but for Arthur C Clarke. Yet there is a difference. If Arthur was under fire for anything he had written he would answer for himself; he would never dream of asking me to answer for him.

I am amazed to learn that Paul Feldman has been cited as the brains behind the Diary hoax. This is news to me and to everyone else known to me. My view has always been that he was duped by it. Indeed I wrote to him twice and advised him to ask for his money back from Robert Smith. Then I realised that he had developed such an unhealthy obsession with being right that the paths of persuasion were closed.

I have no objection to anyone having weird ideas providing they don't twist the truth in pushing these ideas.

My work on the Will has in fact taken up very little time, it is simply an example of the type of report that any professional investigator should aim for. The type of report I've been writing for many years. That report is essential to an understanding of this affair, since we know that the Will was examined by the Diary camp as early as 6 July 1992; that was a year before I became involved. Everything I have since written about that document could have been discovered by them, back in 1992. The neglect speaks for itself, and raises legitimate doubts about the quality of the research. And there is, of course, the question of the distortions used to denigrate this Will. Where were the cautioning voices?

As for the forgers,let me emphasise that they are in a cosy position. Even if they came forward and confessed, nothing would happen, unless someone complained. And that complainant would have to show loss or damage caused by this forgery. So who is willing to complain? Certainly not Smith, Harrison or Feldman; they've each done well out of marketing the Diary. So the rogues are in the clear!

As for their identities I've already dealt with that in my reply to Mrs Harrison which ran as follows:-

"Mrs Harrison's 'challenge' to me to name the forgers of the Diary is sheer hogwash and an excuse for yet more evasions. (Now there's a chance to yell 'abuse') She already knows my answer. There are good legal and logical reasons why I choose to stay silent; I have ,in fact, taken legal advice on this score. But I am quite willing to present my papers to any neutral solicitor, and he, or she, will confirm that there are sound and honourable reasons for my silence. But this is a petty diversion. My case against the Diary rests on the text and the handwriting of that document and is independent of the identities of the forgers. Thus anyone can review this evidence, here and now, and see just where the jiggery-pokery lies. This is exactly in line with my case against the forged Abberline Diary used by Melvyn Fairclough in his book. There we are not sure of the identity of the forger, but it is a certainty that the document is faked; the text and handwriting betray it. And that's what really counts."

Related pages:
  Maybrick Diary
       Dissertations: 5th Int. Investigative Psychology Conf. 
       Dissertations: A Final Response to Mr. Harris 
       Dissertations: A Guide through the Labyrinth 
       Dissertations: A Nest of Forgers 
       Dissertations: An Article by Richard Scheib 
       Dissertations: An Article by Steven Fern 
       Dissertations: Bravo for Maybrick 
       Dissertations: Bristol University Surface Analysis of Maybrick Watch - 3... 
       Dissertations: Dear Diary 
       Dissertations: Facts Please, Not Fallacies! 
       Dissertations: Maybrick Hoax: Donald McCormick's Legacy 
       Dissertations: Maybrick Hoax: More Futile Floundering 
       Dissertations: Maybrick Hoax: Some Extra Guidance 
       Dissertations: Maybrick Hoax: The Roots File 
       Dissertations: Maybrick Hoax: Yet More Unacceptable Ploys 
       Dissertations: Maybrick Watch - Scientific Analysis 
       Dissertations: Platt Diary Report 
       Dissertations: Reflections on the Ripperologist Interview 
       Dissertations: The Caution was Given 
       Dissertations: The Maybrick Diary Analysis 
       Dissertations: The Maybrick Diary Ink 
       Dissertations: The Maybrick Diary Paper 
       Dissertations: The Maybrick Hoax: A Fact File 
       Dissertations: The Maybrick Hoax: Evasions are Valueless 
       Dissertations: The Ripperologist Interview 
       Dissertations: Turgoose Report on the Maybrick Watch - 23 August 1993 
       Ripper Media: Jack the Ripper: The Final Chapter 
       Ripper Media: The Diary of Jack the Ripper 
       Suspects: James Maybrick - Index 
       Suspects: Michael Barretts Confessions 
       Suspects: Michael Barretts Confessions - January 25 1995 
       Suspects: Michael Barretts Confessions - January 5 1995 
       Suspects: Photographs of the Maybrick Diary 
  Melvin Harris
       Authors: Melvin Harris (1930-2004) 
       Ripper Media: Jack the Ripper: The Bloody Truth 
       Ripper Media: The Ripper File 
       Ripper Media: The True Face of Jack the Ripper