New evidence based on computer enhanced forensic techniques 7 July 2010
Chiedi chi era quel «Beatle» (Literal translation: Ask who was that "Beatle")
The cover-story Chiedi chi era quel «Beatle» for the July 15 2009 issue of Wired Italia, the Italian edition of the US magazine Wired, describes the analysis of the McCartney conspiracy theory conducted by two Italians, Gabriella Carlesi and Francesco Gavazzeni (the man and woman in the photo).
Their purpose for analyzing this conspiracy theory was to provide indisputable, scientific evidence that would put an end to the persistent rumors that Paul McCartney had died in a car accident in 1966. However, the results of their analysis surprised them. Instead of putting an end to the rumors, their analysis provides scientific evidence that the Paul McCartney of today is not the same man as the Paul McCartney prior to 1966.
By coincidence, on that same day that this article appeared in Italy, Paul McCartney was at the Ed Sullivan theater in New York City to appear on the David Letterman television show and to give a free, outdoor performance on top of the marquee of the Ed Sullivan theater. He and Letterman laughed about the silly rumor that Paul McCartney had died in 1966. We could interpret McCartney's appearance in New York City as an attempt to distract Americans from the publication of the Italian article, and to encourage Americans to laugh at the McCartney conspiracy theories.
I will use the name Paul to refer to Paul McCartney before the 1966 car accident, and Faul to refer to the Paul McCartney after the accident. So, are Paul and Faul the same person?
Who are Gabriella Carlesi and Francesco Gavazzeni?
Gabriella Carlesi is forensic pathologist who specializes in identification of people through craniometry (i.e. comparison of certain features of the skull) and forensic odontology (i.e. analysis of the teeth), while Francesco Gavazzeni is a specialist in computer analyses. By putting their talents together, they were able to use a computer to obtain high precision measurements of Paul McCartney's skull from various photos of his face.
Certain features of our skull, teeth, and ears are extremely effective for identifying us; some of them cannot currently be modified by surgery. In fact, in Germany, the identification of the shape of the right ear has the same legal value of that of a DNA test or fingerprints detection.
|Gabriella Carlesi has been a consultant for identification
of people via digital image processing for various investigations, including:
• The murder of journalist Ilaria Alpi and her camera operator Miran Hrovatin (for an Italian Parliament Commission),
• The assassination of Benito Mussolini and his mistress Claretta Petacci (for a historical reconstruction).
Forensic evidence based on photographs
The two researchers began their analysis by obtaining high quality photos of Paul McCartney before and after the car accident. Gavazzeni complained that some photos taken before 1966 were not properly dated (sometimes different photo agencies would have different dates for the same photo), and that some of the best photos were the property of photographers who were very reluctant to release them. However, they eventually found two good quality photos dated before 1966 and two after 1967. Different photos of a human face, in order to be compared, have to be re-sized to match the same scale; to do this, one feature of the face must be used as a scaling factor.
These two researchers opted for the distance between the pupils. In other words, the photos were scaled so that the distance between the pupils was exactly the same for all of them.
Once photos of a person have been scaled so that the eyes have identical locations, then if you lay the photos on top of each other, certain features will match exactly, such as the shape of the skull. The skin and hair may be very different, but the skulls should be identical.
|Both of the photos taken prior to 1966 matched one another perfectly,
and both of the photos taken after 1967 matched one another perfectly.
However, the researchers were shocked to discover that the photos prior
to 1966 did not match the photos taken
For example, the frontal curvature of the jaw was different (i.e. the curve going from one ear to the other and passing through the chin, which you see when looking directly into a face, as in the photos on the right) and the jaw arc was also different (i.e. the curve of the jaw that you would see if looking downward at the head from above).
Gavazzeni noticed a common feature of Faul's early photos that is not seen in his recent photos: a dark area shadowing the external corner of the left eye. That area now shows something half-way between a scar and something that resembles skin that was stretched as a consequence of cosmetic surgery, or, as Gavazzeni suggests, of an imperfect cosmetic surgery. Photos show that Faul's head is more oblong than Paul's head. Gavazzeni pointed out that some of the early printed photos of Faul must have been compressed in height in order to make his head appear shorter and more rounded. He said his conclusion is inescapable because the shape of the skull of an adult cannot be altered. He said there was a simple trick for stretching or compressing photos during the printing process in those days before computer photo editing became available, so it would have been very easy for them to do this trick.
Carlesi pointed out that the line separating Faul's lips is much wider, to the point that it was obvious even when Faul grew a mustache, perhaps in an attempt to hide that detail. Lips can be inflated and increased in volume, but the wideness of their separating line can be altered only to a small extent.
More interesting is the position, relative to the skull, of the point where the nose detaches from the face, because it can not modified by surgery. According to Carlesi, these points for Paul and Faul are considerably different.
|Some features of the ear are also useful for identification purposes because these as well are not modifiable through surgery. Carlesi and Gavazzeni determined that the ears of Paul and Faul differed significantly.|
Teeth can be altered... to a certain extent
|Some features of the human body can
be altered, such the position and slope of teeth (dental
braces do this for millions of people).
Carlesi noticed that the teeth configurations for Paul and Faul do not
match, but in a very curious way.
In Paul's mouth, his upper right canine tooth is pushed out of its normal position because there is not enough room in his jaw for all of his teeth to fit properly.
In Faul's mouth, that same canine tooth is also crooked, but there is plenty of room in his jaw for all of his teeth. Since no other teeth are pushing against the crooked tooth, how did that tooth become crooked?
Carlesi concludes that the crooked tooth in Faul's mouth was the result of a dental operation to simulate the crooked tooth in Paul's mouth.
Carlesi was even more amazed at the difference in the shape of the palate. It was so narrow in Paul that some teeth were misaligned (such as the canine tooth mentioned above), but Faul's palate was so wide that the front teeth did not rotate with respect to their axis, or tilt, as was happening for Paul, with the only exception of that upper right canine (mentioned above) which leans outward. Carlesi points out that altering the shape of a person's palate, although possible in the 1960s, would have required a traumatic surgical operation (the breaking of a bone. She doesn't say which bone, but seems to refer to the hard palate), and it would have required the wearing of fixed dental braces for more than a year. Therefore, if the conspiracy theories are false - i.e., if the Paul McCartney that we see today with a large palate is the original Paul McCartney with a small palate - then Paul went through some very serious dental surgeries, and he would have suffered for a long time, and it would have had an effect on his voice.
The more logical conclusion is that the Paul McCartney of today is a substitute, and that Faul went through a much simpler dental operation to make one of his teeth crooked.A DNA test!
Carlesi and Gavazzeni commented that if McCartney really wanted to put an end to these rumors, he could have offered to take a DNA test with his father or his younger brother, Mike, but he didn't. McCartney took a DNA test only once, but the authors of the article point out that the DNA test created more confusion and suspicion of his true identity, not less.
In 1962, when the Beatles were living in Hamburg, Germany and still unknown to most people, Paul McCartney had a brief affair with a German woman named Erika Wohlers. She gave birth to a daughter, Bettina, in December 1962, which was during the time the Beatles were starting to become famous. The Beatles soon left Germany, and McCartney abandoned Erica. Around 1967 McCartney agreed to pay 30,000 deutsche marks to support Bettina, but he was not admitting to being her father, even though she claims her German birth certificate identifies him as her father!
Once Bettina became an adult, she asked a German court to have McCartney recognize her as his natural daughter. McCartney had to submit to a DNA test, and the test showed that he was not her father. Interestingly, based on an autograph signed by McCartney, together with some photos taken for the occasion, Bettina accused the person who took that DNA test of being a substitute for Paul, not the real Paul McCartney! The autograph, for instance, was signed by somebody right-handed (Paul was left-handed). More information about this DNA test is here.Carlesi and Gavazzeni do some damage control
Both of the Italian researchers were shocked to discover that the conspiracy theories appear valid, so at the end of the article they do some damage control by pointing out that since McCartney is a famous person, more analyses should be conducted before anybody makes these accusations so that we can be 100% certain about the conclusion. Earlier in that article, Gavazzeni admitted that the more they were pressured to release the results of their analysis, the more they tried to stall for time because the evidence was pointing in the opposite direction of what they were hoping for. Unfortunately for them, the more the time they spent analyzing the evidence, the more certain they became that Paul McCartney really did die in 1966!
It's also amusing to note that Carlesi said that she had agreed to get involved in the analysis because she assumed it would require only a few minutes of her time to prove that Paul and Faul are the same person!Some comments from the readers of the Italian article
Some readers posted interesting comments at the bottom of the on-line version of the Wired Italia article:
- • Reader frabot, on August 22,
2009 at 23:42:07 suggests to watch the Late Show with David Letterman for
July 15, 2009 (is it a coincidence that this is the same date of the publication
of that article by Wired Italia?), in which McCartney jokes about
the idea that Paul died in 1966. That footage is interesting because Faul
seems to lie:
youtube.com/watch?v=1kYDdBWESQw• Reader Luca, on August 1, 2009 at 13:11:29 claims to have analyzed the voices of Paul and Faul and that their timbres differ. He also points out that after that accident the Beatles significantly changed they hair styles, especially McCartney, who conveniently had slightly longer hair on the right side of his head.
• Reader easytale, on July 30, 2009 at 9:53:35 points out that Faul played live only a very few times, songs like Yesterday, and that he played them only after the 1980s. And once, around the year 2000, he played in Canada using his right hand!
- • Forensic evidence shows that Faul is
• Old photos were altered to make Faul
more closely resemble Paul;
• Faul went through some dental operation(s) to have some of his teeth misaligned to mimic Paul's particular defects;
• Faul had to learn to become left-handed.