Sunday, April 21, 2019

Adler, A: Turin Shroud Encyclopedia

Turin Shroud Encyclopedia
Copyright © Stephen E. Jones

Adler, A #7

This is "Adler, A," part #7 of my new Turin Shroud Encyclopedia. For information about this series, see part #1 and part #2. Emphases are mine unless otherwise indicated. Much of this is about Heller and STURP. When I get to "Heller, J" and "STURP" and also "McCrone, W" and "Jesus," I will transfer some of this to those entries and link to them from here.

[Index #1] [Previous: Acts of Thaddeus] #6] [Next: Allen, N #8]

Alan David Adler (1931-2000), was a Professor of Chemistry at

[Right (enlarge)[2]: Alan David Adler (5 October 1931-12 June 2000).]

Western Connecticut State College, now Western Connecticut State University, up to his retirement in 1992.

Adler was a renowned porphyrin chemist and because of his extensive porphyrin studies and encyclopedic knowledge, he was considered an authority on blood chemistry.

Dr. John H. Heller Before that, for seven years from 1967 to 1974, Adler was a research scientist at the then New England Institute, Ridgefield, Connecticut. There he was a colleague of the founder of the Institute, biophysicist Dr. John H. Heller (1921-95) [see future "Heller, J"].

John P. Jackson In 1978 Heller read an article about the Shroud in the journal Science by leading science journalist Barbara Culliton[3] and his curiosity was aroused by the phrase in it, "the physics of miracles"[4]. The article was about a group of scientists who were investigating the Shroud of Turin[5] (which was the nucleus of the Shroud of Turin Research Project - STURP) [see future "STURP"]. Heller wrote to John P. Jackson [see future "Jackson, J"] whom the article said was the leader of the group[6]. The article had mentioned that there was skepticism about the blood because preliminary tests showed that the blood stains on the Shroud fluoresce, but blood does not fluoresce[7]. In his letter to Jackson, Heller asked if the blood on the Shroud was an image of blood or actual blood, and if the latter "it should be very simple to determine"[8]. Jackson phoned Heller and clarified that the blood was tested in 1973 (by the Turin Commission) [see future "Turin Commission"] but unsuccessfully[9]. Heller said that the 1973 test must have been "extraordinarily inept" not to have detected blood if it was present[10]. Heller added that "members of the institute [New England Institute] staff had been working with blood porphyrins [see future "blood"] and had learned how to make them

[Left (enlarge)[11]: Diagram of a porphyrin ring containing an iron atom in a blood haemo-globin molecule.]

fluoresce, which was then measured with "micro-spectrophotometry"[12]. Heller does not explicitly say, but presumably this porphyrin fluorescence research was conducted by Adler.

Raymond N. Rogers Jackson asked Heller to contact Los Alamos National Laboratory chemist Ray Rogers (1927–2005) [see future "Rogers, R"] which he did[13]. Rogers agreed that "[p]orphyrin fluorescence is an interesting approach"[14] to identify if the blood on the Shroud really is blood.

STURP When Heller reported back to Jackson on his talk with Rogers, Jackson invited Heller to a "Shroud team" meeting in Amston, Connecticut, over the Labor Day weekend [2-4 September, 1978][15]. Heller attended the meeting in Amston which turned out to include a "dry run"[16] of a planned 4 days of testing the Shroud in Turin from 9 to 12 October 1978[17],

[Right (enlarge): STURP photographer Barrie Schwortz' [see future "Schwortz, B"] copy of the "Operations Test Plan for Investigating the Shroud of Turin" from the "dry run" in Amston, Connecticut, on 3 and 4 September 1978[18].]

at the end of the 1978 Exposition of the Shroud from 26 September to 8 October, 1978[19].

Jackson informed the meeting that "a corporate entity in the state of Connecticut" had been created "called the Shroud of Turin Research Project, Inc., or STURP"[20]. After modifications to a secrecy agreement everyone signed and became members of STURP"[21]. But Heller was told he would not go to Turin, because his job, the determination of the presence or absence of blood on the samples the team would take from the Shroud, would begin when the specimens came back from Italy[22].

Blood porphyrins At the Amston meeting Heller told Rogers that at the New England Institute his colleagues had extracted the iron atoms out of the centre of blood porphyrin molecules, after which they fluoresced a specific ruby-red colour under ultraviolet light, and using that technique they could measure 100 nanograms (100 billionth of a gram) of blood if it was present[23].

Blood tape samples In Turin Ray Rogers and Rev. Robert Dinegar (1921-2005) applied a special $5000-per-roll sticky-tape supplied by 3M Corporation[25],

[Left (enlarge): STURP's Rogers and Dinegar taking a sticky tape sample from the Shroud in 1978[24].]

using a special applicator designed at Los Alamos that measured applied pressure[26], took 32 sticky tape samples[27] of every feature (see below), according to a predetermined grid[28].

Walter S. McCrone But Rogers made the mistake of first loaning the 32 tapes from the Shroud to leading microscopist Walter McCrone (1916-2002)[30] [see future "McCrone, W"],

[Above (enlarge)[29]: Composite map of Shroud front (left) and back (right) locations of 32 sticky tape samples taken by STURP's Rogers and Dinegar in 1978.]

not realising that McCrone was an extreme anti-authenticist who would not accept that the Shroud was Jesus' even if its radiocarbon date was first century[31].

As an example of McCrone's capacity for self-delusion (or rather lying - see below), he claimed that half of STURP's samples were his and the other half were Rogers':

"Ray took the tapes back to Los Alamos and I collected them from him during the week of December 15, 1978 ... When I returned to Chicago with the tapes, I split them into two duplicate sets - one for Ray and one for me"[32].
That McCrone was here lying is evident in that he kept and worked on all 32 tapes ("Careful study of each of these 32 tapes, micrometer by micrometer, over a period of months"[33]), damaging them all in the process[34].

McCrone initially refused to return STURP's tapes to Rogers but under threat of legal action by "STURP's lawyers"[35], he first returned to Rogers the most damaged half of the tapes[36]. And then after a visit to his Chicago laboratory by STURP's "Ray Rogers, John Jackson and Eric Jumper," McCrone returned to them the remaining "all slides, bits and pieces of those tape slides"[37]. Even then McCrone was lying because he kept back one Shroud "slide 3-CB," but afterwards he "was forced by threats of legal action to return even that tape"[38]. Later McCrone falsely claimed that he was "[not] very bright" and was "conned out of my set of tapes" by STURP[39]!

Heller's early tests Early in 1979, before the events above, at Rogers' request, Heller phoned McCrone several times for the return of STURP's tapes, but he was never available[40]. So Heller experimented with non-blood colourants which a medieval forger might have used on the Shroud, but these were all unsuccessful[41]. Eventually McCrone sent Heller four poor-quality tape microscope slides with his notes which indicated there was little or no blood on them[42]. Heller did succeed in identifying blood using porphyrin fluorescence, but the amount of `blood' on the tapes McCrone had sent him was too small (about 700 picograms where a picogram is 1 thousandth of a nanogram) [see above on a nanogram] that Heller could not prove it[43]. Heller called McCrone again and left a message, "requesting any other slides that had or might have blood on them" but McCrone's (lying and/or deluded) relayed answer via his receptionist, was "no"[44].

Enter Adler Then Heller thought of Adler:

"Then a colleague, Professor Alan Adler, popped into my mind. I had worked with Dr. Adler on various projects over the years. He would admit to being a physical chemist, thermodynamicist, and a porphyrin nut. He is a Renaissance man, with an encyclopedic knowledge of the physical and biological sciences, military history, ecology, and many other fields. I wondered whether he would be interested ... "[45].
Adler was interested! He agreed with Heller that it was blood on a tape returned by McCrone, and he improved on some of Heller's experiments, but still the amounts were too small to prove that they were blood[46].

STURP workshop, Santa Barbara CA, March 1979 STURP's first post-Turin workshop intervened[47]. It was held at the Brooks Institute of Photography, Santa Barbara, California, on the weekend of 24-25 March 1979[48]. Topics included:

• Roger Morris, a physicist from Los Alamos, presented a paper on x-ray fluorescence, in which he reported the Shroud was covered in calcium, and to a lesser extent strontium and iron[49]. Heller "wondered where ... it could have come from"[50]. but Jesus was buried in a limestone (calcium carbonate) tomb and Jerusalem limestone has both strontium and iron in it [see 22Mar13 & 27Dec18]! If the Shroud image had been painted, x-ray fluorescence could identify any of the inorganic pigments made up of such elements as arsenic, cobalt, and mercury, available in the Middle Ages, but it didn't[51]. The iron was also spread uniformly over the Shroud, except in the bloodstains where there was a significantly higher incidence of it, which is evidence that the bloodstains are blood, because blood contains iron atoms in its heme porphyrins[52] (see above).

Don Lynn (1932-2000)] and Jean Lorre (1945-2005), both of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, using a microdensitometer and a computer showed that the Shroud front and back "images were directionless and therefore could not have been painted by human hand"[53] [see 29Oct16].

John Jackson presented mathematical models which demonstrated

[Above enlarge: "Correlation of image intensity on the Turin Shroud with the 3-D structure of a human body shape"[54].]

that the Shroud image can be described by a "single global-mapping function"[55]. This meant that the Shroud had overlain a real human body[56]. "Along with the nondirectional quality of the images [above], the results of the X-ray fluorescence [above], and Rogers' evaluation":

"Ray Rogers was an eminent expert in thermal effects. His initial interest in the Shroud was fanned by the observation that it had been through a fire in 1532, at which time parts of the silver box containing the cloth had melted. Molten metal had burned through the layers of folded material, intersecting areas of `blood' and body image, and leaving ugly holes and scorched areas down both sides of the linen. Rogers realized that this mischance had created a first-rate thermal experiment ... the melting point of silver made during the Middle Ages ... [was] about 900°C. He calculated that the temperature within the box had risen to nearly 200°C, before the box was doused with water ... He realized that if the blood and body had been created by an artist using any organic pigment — or even an inorganic pigment in an organic vehicle — the heat would have produced a significant change in color in portions of the images ... However, the photographs of the Shroud, both in black and white and in color, showed no effect whatsoever"[57]
"this significantly reduced the possibility that the Shroud was a painting"[58] (to put it mildly)!

• Roger Gilbert presented his reflectance spectroscopy measurements but Heller admitted there "was far too much information" for him "to digest at one sitting," although he did note that"the lightest scorch area [from the 1532 fire] was similar to the color of the images of the man, but he had "had no idea" what this meant[59]. See 22Dec11 where the closest match to the Shroudman's image on linen was produced by "extremely brief pulses of ultraviolet light" from a high-frequency excimer laser. Heller did not mention the Gilbert's discovery that there were almost invisible traces of dirt on the man's feet, which turned out to be a very close match to Jerusalem limestone dust! [see 22Mar13 & 27Dec18].

• Heller's presentation was brief because it was only of two microscope slides, one of "seven microfibers with something on them that looked like blood" on the poor-quality tape (out of STURP'S 32) returned by McCrone [above] and one of old Spanish linen with his own blood[60].

McCrone, in his presentation, claimed that from his examination of only "some of the Shroud fibers" that "the body images had been made by red iron-oxide earth pigments"[61]. Although

[Right: "Dr. Walter C. McCrone, Jr."[62].]

McCrone was a particle expert who had written a five-volume "Particle Atlas," nevertheless optical physicist Sam Pellicori [below[63].] was thinking:

"I don't believe this. I've measured the spectrum of iron oxide dozens of times. The color's totally wrong for what he's claiming. Based on spectrophotometry and the X-ray fluores-cence findings, there's no way that the Shroud images are composed of iron oxide. I may be young and naive, and McCrone may be the master, but he's wrong"[64]
Jackson was thinking that McCrone's analysis was contradicted by the Gilberts' reflectance curves[65]. McCrone projected slides on the screen of red dots on Shroud fibres which he claimed were "red iron earth pigments"[66]. McCrone concluded by stating that he was 90 percent sure that the Shroud was a painting - or perhaps there may have been a very faint pre-existing image that was later touched up by an artist using red iron-oxide earth pigments"[67].

The question and answer session that followed McCrone's presentation went like this:

"`Dr. McCrone, how do you know those red dots are iron oxide?’
`Did you test them chemically?’
`I don't have to. Experience. Besides, it's birefringent.’
`How do you explain the X-ray fluorescence studies and the Gilberts' curves?’
`They must be wrong.’
`How does your iron-oxide paint jibe with the negative image and the 3-D information?’
`Oh, any competent artist could have done that.’
`Do you mean that you just looked through your microscope and, without doing specific tests for iron oxide, can proclaim it a painting?’
And with that, McCrone left the meeting[69].

Heller's later test After the Santa Barbara meeting, Heller who had been a Professor of Internal Medicine at Yale University[70], asked a former colleague at Yale, molecular biology professor George M. McCorkle (1921-93), for access to a Yale microspectrophotometer to test whether the 700 picogram sample [above] was blood[71]. McCorkle arranged for Heller to use the microspectrophotometer in the department of Yale cell biology professor, Joseph G. Gall (1928-)[72]. If the 700 picogram red spot was blood it would absorb light at 410 nanometres[73]. As Heller described the test:

"We began our readings of the biltong spot at 700 nanometers. I wrote in the dark. After each reading, we moved down 10 nanometers on the scale. There were some increases and decreases, but until these were plotted, there would be no way of knowing which part of the fingerprint of what molecule it might be. When we reached 450 nanometers, my pulse rate began to go up. Very unscientific. At 430 nanometers, we shortened the gap between readings to 5 nanometers. At 425, the peak was still climbing. At 420 and 415, it still was rising. The crucial reading was 410. If the graph peaked here and began to fall away, we were on to something big. If, however, it continued to rise, the experiment had fallen through and was useless. At 405, there seemed to be a flattening-out. My pulse was racing. `Calm down,' I said to myself. `This is an experiment nothing more, nothing less. The data are the data!' When we hit 400, the peak began to fall. At 395 — more so. At 390, it was sharply down. `Oh, my God,' I said aloud, `it really is blood!' The hair stood up on the nape of my neck. Exhilaration shot through me. This was blood, not iron oxide. I let out my breath with a huge whoosh, and Gall turned to me and smiled. `I guess we did it, John'"[74].
Heller returned to the New England Institute and showed the microspectrophotometer curve he had plotted to Adler, who immediately recognised it as the spectrum of "hemoglobin ... the acid methemoglobin form ... denatured and very old"[75]. Heller and Adler then phoned "two other hemoglobin hotshots" including the New England Institute's Dr. Bruce Cameron (1934-2018) and they both confirmed that the spectrum plotted was that of "old acid methemoglobin"[76]. The 700 picogram red spot on the Shroud fibres attached to the STURP tape that McCrone had returned was blood!

STURP workshop, Los Alamos NM, October 1979 STURP held its second post-Turin workshop at Los Alamos in October 1979[77]. Heller could not attend it but he was sent an audiotape of the proceedings[78]. McCrone had claimed that the iron oxide which comprised the Shroud image was extremely finely ground, less than one micron in size, and had not existed until the 1800s when it was known as "jeweler's rouge"[79]. Furthermore, McCrone claimed that someone had after 1800 "touched up" the Shroud image with a gelatin based iron oxide paint[80]. Jackson asked Heller what he thought of these claims of McCrone[81]. Heller replied that sub-micron particles of iron had existed "since the dawn of time" from micrometeorites, erosion and volcanic eruptions, and that the Shroud had been held "under lock and key" since it had arrived in Turin ~400 years ago[82]. Heller could

[Right (enlarge)[83]: Close-up of the `ground-zero' burn where a drop of molten silver at about 900°C first contacted the Shroud and its image [see 20Jan18]. The scourge marks show where the body image is, but there is no change to the colour of the image (the darker colour is scorching near where the Shroud had caught fire - the two missing `triangles'), as there would be if the image was comprised of iron oxide suspended in gelatin, as McCrone claimed.]

have added Ray Roger's point above, that if the Shroud image was "an inorganic pigment [iron oxide] in an organic vehicle" [gelatin], it would have changed colour in the intense heat of the 1532 fire, but it didn't.

STURP conference, Colorado Springs, January 1980 On 21-22 January 1980, STURP members, including Heller and Adler, met at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs[84]. The purpose of the meeting was to better understand the chemistry of the Shroud[85]. The original dates had been inconvenient to McCrone, so the members all changed their plans to accommodate him, but then at the last minute McCrone sent a message that he wasn't coming[86]! The October 1979 Los Alamos meeting was the last STURP meeting McCrone attended, even though he was invited to all of them[87]. Jackson informed Heller and Adler that McCrone had returned STURP's tape slides[88] [see above]!

Heller looked through a microscope at a slide with body image fibres on it and saw "microacres of what looks like blood"[89]. They decided to first test McCrone's assertion that gelatin, a protein, was present in the image. McCrone had used a general test for protein, Amido Black, but that was a poor choice as it is not specific and reacts with cellulose of which the Shroud's flax fibres are comprised[90]. Adler used a test for protein that was far more sensitive than the Amido Black test - the Biuret-Lowry and found no reaction[91]. Next Adler carried out a fluorescence test for porphyrin and the distinctive ruby-red colour of blood porphyrin could be clearly seen, not only under ultraviolet light, but even with the naked eye[92]! The blood was indeed blood and the image did not contain gelatin[93]! Adler and Heller then placed further "red dots" on both image and non-image fibrils under the microscope and when hydrazine was added to dissolve any iron they turned the typical hemochromogen colour, upon which Adler declared:

"This, lady and gentlemen, is not iron oxide; it is blood!"[94]!
Heller concluded these January 1980 Colorado Springs tests with:
"For the next few days, repeated tests for protein in image fibers were negative. The red particles dissolved in hydrazine. There was, of course, protein in the bloodstain areas but not in the body image areas. Other tests were done, but by now we had enough unequivocal data to serve as a solid base for a preliminary conclusion that the images were not gelatin and iron oxide and that the blood was in fact blood. We had not ruled out unconventional colors and other methods of image making, but McCrone's hypothesis was unlikely"[95]!
STURP final meeting, New London CT, January 1980 To cut this already long story short (it will be covered in future "Heller, J", "McCrone, W" and "STURP" entries), STURP held its final meeting, open to the public, in the main auditorium of Connecticut College in New London, CT[96]. McCrone was again invited to take part but again he declined[97]. McCrone's `body language' shows that deep down he knew that he was wrong!

After the presentations there was a press conference during which Adler was asked how he could answer McCrone's claim that there was no blood, but merely a mixture of red ochre and vermilion[98]. Adler displayed on the screen table 5 from their 1981 paper, "A Chemical Investigation of the Shroud of Turin"[99]:

"Tests confirming the presence of whole blood on the Shroud
  1. High iron in blood areas by X-ray fluorescence
  2. Indicative reflection spectra
  3. Indicative microspectrophotometric transmission spectra
  4. Chemical generation of characteristic porphyrin fluorescence
  5. Positive hemochromogen tests
  6. Positive cyanomethemoglobin tests
  7. Positive detection of bile pigments
  8. Positive demonstration of protein
  9. Positive indication of albumin
  10. Protease tests, leaving no residue
  11. Positive immunological test for human albumin
  12. Microscopic appearance as compared with appropriate controls
  13. Forensic judgment of the appearance of the various wound and blood marks"[100].
Then, after briefly explaining each item, Adler answered the question:
"That means that the red stuff on the Shroud is emphatically, and without any reservation, nothing else but B-L-O-O-D!'"[101].
Science cannot prove that the Shroud is Jesus'? Heller continued:
"Many people in the audience and in the press asked, in more ways than I thought were possible, whether the scientific evidence indicated that the Shroud was the authentic burial cloth of Jesus. We thought we had answered this question as many times as it was asked. Finally, Ray Rogers took the floor. `In science, you're entitled to any hypothesis you choose, including the one that the Shroud was made by elves from the Black Forest. But if you don't have a test to examine that hypothesis, it's not worth anything. We do not have a test for Jesus Christ. So we can't hypothesize or test for that question'"[102].
Elsewhere Adler similarly claimed:
"There exists no scientifically acceptable experiment that can establish the identity of the man whose image appears on the Shroud of Turin; i.e., there is no experimental test for `Christness'. Hence all the scientific experimentation that one can devise can only support the consistency of a historical identification or authentication of the cloth as Christ's burial shroud, but not `prove' it. However, a single experiment can be seen to be capable of disauthenticating such an identification"[103].
But this is true, only if by "science" is meant the experimental, `hard' sciences, physics and chemistry. Then of course, there is no physics or chemistry, experimental, test of Jesus (or of any historical person)! But physics and chemistry are not the whole of science.

There is a science which identifies individual persons beyond reasonable doubt, and effectively sends hundreds, if not thousands, of them to prison every day, namely forensic science. And forensic science identifies individual persons by probability:

"Forensic statistics is the application of probability models and statistical techniques to scientific evidence, such as DNA evidence, and the law ... This ratio of probabilities is then used by juries or judges to draw inferences or conclusions and decide legal matters"[104].
STURP member Ken Stevenson and Christian philosopher Gary Habermas in their 1981 book, "Verdict on the Shroud," assigned conservative probabilities [in square brackets] to "eight irregularities [which] were present in Jesus' death and burial" which are "also present in the death and burial of the man of the Shroud"[105] [see future "Jesus"]:
"1 ... Jesus' scourging and other mistreatment at the hands of his executioners" [1/2];
"2. ... Jesus was crowned with thorns ... to mock his claims to be ... the `ruler' [King] of the Jews" [1/400];
"3. Many crucifixion victims were tied to their crosses with ropes" ... Jesus ... [was] nailed" [1/2];
"4. The ... Romans commonly broke the legs of crucified persons in order to hasten their death ... Jesus['] ... legs were not broken"[1/3];
"5. To insure that Jesus was dead, a soldier stabbed him in the side, and blood and water flowed from the wound" [1/27];
"6. Since most crucified victims were criminals, slaves, and rebels, few were given individual burials in a fine linen shroud ... [as] Jesus was"[1/8];
"7. ... Jesus had to be buried hastily in order to be placed in the tomb before the Sabbath"[1/8];
"8. ... Jesus' body did not undergo corruption (Acts 2:22-32) "[1/10] ... multiplying these [independent] probabilities" [1/2 * 1/400 * 1/2 * 1/3 * 1/27 * 1/8 * 1/8 * 1/10 = 1/82,944,000 ], we have 1 chance in 82,944,000 that the man buried in the Shroud is not Jesus"[106].
Far from having "vastly overstated the case for the Shroud's identification with Jesus," as claimed by the mathematically challenged[107], "mere arts graduate"[108], Ian Wilson, leading Shroud sceptics Steven Schafersman and Joe Nickell "agree with" Stevenson and Habermas' "odds [of] 1 in 83 million that the man on the shroud is not Jesus Christ":
"As the (red ochre) dust settles briefly over Sindondom, it becomes clear there are only two choices: Either the shroud is authentic (naturally or supernaturally produced by the body of Jesus) or it is a product of human artifice. Asks Steven Schafersman: `Is there a possible third hypothesis? No, and here's why. Both Wilson[109] and Stevenson and Habermas[110] go to great lengths to demonstrate that the man imaged on the shroud must be Jesus Christ and not someone else. After all, the man on this shroud was flogged, crucified, wore a crown of thorns, did not have his legs broken, was nailed to the cross, had his side pierced, and so on. Stevenson and Habermas even calculate the odds as 1 in 83 million that the man on the shroud is not Jesus Christ (and they consider this a very conservative estimate)[111]. I agree with them on all of this. If the shroud is authentic, the image is that of Jesus'[112]."
Adler's voluminous writings about the Shroud The above has been mainly about Adler's crucial role in proving that the bloodstains on the Shroud really are blood. But Adler wrote much more about the Shroud that can be covered here. Fortunately, the late Dorothy Crispino (1916-2014) collected Adler's voluminous writings about the Shroud and published them in a book, "The Orphaned Manuscript" (2002), the papers in which are online as the last, Special issue of Crispino's Shroud Spectrum International.

Adler's `larger than life' character Adler was evidently a `larger than life' character. Heller described him as "somewhat overwhelming to strangers ... exuberant and unflappable, a compulsive talker ... [with] the subtlety of a tank":

"When Adler and I arrived at the motel in Colorado Springs, Adler had to be introduced to the team'. Al seems somewhat overwhelming to strangers. In the fall he lets all his hair from the neck up grow wildly. In the spring he shaves off everything except his eyebrows. I think I remember him with a tie once - at a funeral. His shirt often - and his undershirt always - has blazoned on it a huge chemical structure of the basic porphyrin molecule. He is exuberant and unflappable, a compulsive talker who has the disconcerting habit of declaiming even when he is actually listening. He has the subtlety of a tank, but he is nonetheless extremely kind and will make great personal sacrifices to help people in trouble"[113].
Ian Wilson remembered Adler as:
"A man so full of life and zest and argument that those of us who knew him well can perhaps be forgiven for our failing to give his mortality a second thought. ... Throughout the last two decades Adler has been a regular contributor to both US and international Shroud conferences, his good humour, ebullience, loquacity and above all, consummate scientific knowledge serving always to ensure that he stood out from the rest"[114].
Rex Morgan recalled Adler at a symposium, giving "an emphatic and convincing demonstration of his incisive mind ... without notes and prowling amongst his audience as he spoke":
"Dr Alan Adler one of the handful of top Shroud experts from America presented Concerning the Side Strip on the Shroud of Turin. In his inimitable and totally engaging style, without notes and prowling amongst his audience as he spoke, Adler gave an emphatic and convincing demonstration of his incisive mind. He traced in detail his reasons for proposing that the sidestrip is in fact part of the cloth itself and the apparent seam is a tuck through which a rope or pole had passed to aid suspension of the cloth for display"[115].
Albeit being wrong that the sidestrip is not separate from the main body of the Shroud!

Adler not a Christian? Adler evidently was not a Christian. He was "Jewish-born"[116], but I am not aware that he was observant of the Jewish religion. Adler dismissed as "bizarre" fellow chemistry professor Giles Carter (1930-2010)'s theory that the man on the Shroud's hand and finger bones and teeth are xray images caused by Jesus' resurrection[117]. In fact a search through Adler's writings reveals that the word "resurrection" does not even occur! So tragically, Adler appears to have been another leading Shroud pro-authenticist who was "not far from the kingdom of God" (Mk 12:34).

Continued in the next part #8 of this series.

1. This post is copyright. I grant permission to quote from any part of this post (but not the whole post), provided it includes a reference citing my name, its subject heading, its date and a hyperlink back to this page. [return]
2. Crispino, D., "Foreword," in Adler, A.D. & Crispino, D., ed., 2002, "The Orphaned Manuscript: A Gathering of Publications on the Shroud of Turin," Effatà Editrice: Cantalupa, Italy, pp.v-ix, ix. [return]
3. Culliton, B.J., 1978, "The Mystery of the Shroud of Turin Challenges 20th-Century Science," Science, Vol. 201, 21 July, pp.235-239, 236. [return]
4. Heller, J.H., 1983, "Report on the Shroud of Turin," Houghton Mifflin Co: Boston MA, p.5. [return]
5. Heller, 1983, p.5. [return]
6. Heller, 1983, p.12. [return]
7. Culliton, 1978, p.237. [return]
8. Heller, 1983, p.12. [return]
9. Ibid. [return]
10. Heller, 1983, pp.12-13. [return]
11. Stewart, C, 2019, "Introduction An average adult has 5 L of blood Blood Red blood cells." [return]
12. Heller, 1983, p.13. [return]
13. Heller, 1983, p.14. [return]
14. Ibid. [return]
15. Ibid. [return]
16. Heller, 1983, pp.74-75. [return]
17. STURP, 1978, "Operations Test Plan for Investigating the Shroud of Turin by Electromagnetic Radiation at Various Wavelengths," The Shroud of Turin Research Project, Inc., pp.1-61, 2. [return]
18. STURP, 1978, "Operations Test Plan," p.1. [return]
19. Wilson, I., 1998, "The Blood and the Shroud: New Evidence that the World's Most Sacred Relic is Real," Simon & Schuster: New York NY, pp.303-304. [return]
20. Heller, 1983, p.76. [return]
21. Ibid. [return]
22. Heller, 1983, p.83. [return]
23. Heller, 1983, p.88. [return]
24. Rogers, R.N., 2008, "A Chemist's Perspective on the Shroud of Turin," Lulu Press: Raleigh, NC, p.21. [return]
25. Heller, 1983, pp.86, 116. [return]
26. Heller, 1983, p.87. [return]
27. Stevenson K.E. & Habermas G.R., 1981, "Verdict on the Shroud: Evidence for the Death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ," Servant Books: Ann Arbor MI, pp.81-82; Schwalbe, L.A. & Rogers, R.N., 1982, "Physics and Chemistry of the Shroud of Turin: Summary of the 1978 Investigation," Reprinted from Analytica Chimica Acta, Vol. 135, No. 1, 1982, pp.3-49, Elsevier Scientific Publishing Co: Amsterdam, p.11; Scavone, D.C., 1989, "The Shroud of Turin: Opposing Viewpoints," Greenhaven Press: San Diego CA, p.54; Wilson, 1998, p.78; McCrone, W.C., 1999, "Judgment Day for the Shroud of Turin," Prometheus Books: Amherst NY, p.78; Guerrera, V., 2001, "The Shroud of Turin: A Case for Authenticity," TAN: Rockford IL, pp.63, 68; Wilson, I., 2010, "The Shroud: The 2000-Year-Old Mystery Solved," Bantam Press: London, p.58. [return]
28. Heller, 1983, p.117; Scavone, 1989, p.54; Wilson, 1998, p.78; Wilson, 2010, pp.58-59. [return]
29. STURP, 1978, "Operations Test Plan," pp.14 & 15. [return]
30. Heller, 1983, pp.121-122. [return]
31. McCrone, 1999, p.141. [return]
32. McCrone, 1999, p.78. [return]
33. McCrone, 1999, p.140. [return]
34. Rogers, 2008, pp.23-24. [return]
35. McCrone, 1999, p.124. [return]
36. McCrone, 1999, pp.123-124. [return]
37. McCrone, 1999, p.124. [return]
38. Ibid. [return]
39. Ibid. [return]
40. Heller, 1999, pp.122-123. [return]
41. Heller, 1999, pp.123-124. [return]
42. Heller, 1999, pp.124-125. [return]
43. Heller, 1999, pp.126-127. [return]
44. Heller, 1983, p.132. [return]
45. Heller, 1983, pp.132-133. [return]
46. Heller, 1983, pp.133-134. [return]
47. Heller, 1983, p.134. [return]
48. Gove, H.E., 1996, "Relic, Icon or Hoax?: Carbon Dating the Turin Shroud," Institute of Physics Publishing: Bristol UK, p.45. [return]
49. Heller, 1983, p.136. [return]
50. Ibid. [return]
51. Ibid. [return]
52. Ibid. [return]
53. Heller, 1983, pp.137-138 [return]
54. Jackson, et. al, 1984, "Correlation of image intensity on the Turin Shroud with the 3-D structure of a human body shape," Applied Optics, Vol. 23, No. 14, pp. 2244-2270. [return]
55. Heller, 1983, p.138 [return]
56. Ibid. [return]
57. Heller, 1983, pp.6-7 [return]
58. Heller, 1983, p.138. [return]
59. Ibid. [return]
61. Heller, 1983, p.139. [return]
62. "World-renowned Chicago scientist dies at 86: Walter C. McCrone, Jr.," Southwestern Association of Forensic Scientists (SWAFS), 11 October 2015. [return]
63. "Samuel Pellicori, Coating Material News," Materion Corporation, 2019. [return]
64. Heller, 1983, pp.139-140. [return]
65. Heller, 1983, p.140. [return]
66. Ibid. [return]
67. Ibid. [return]
68. Heller, 1983, pp.140-141. [return]
69. Heller, 1983, p.141. [return]
70. Scavone, 1989, p.57; Case, T.W., 1996, "The Shroud of Turin and the C-14 Dating Fiasco," White Horse Press: Cincinnati OH, p.47; Wilson, 1998, p.80;. [return]
71. Heller, 1983, p.143. [return]
72. Heller, 1983, pp.143-144. [return]
73. Heller, 1983, p.144. [return]
74. Heller, 1983, pp.145-146. [return]
75. Heller, 1983, pp.146-147. [return]
76. Heller, 1983, p.147. [return]
77. Nickell, J., 1987, "Inquest on the Shroud of Turin," [1983], Prometheus Books: Buffalo NY, Revised, Reprinted, 2000, p.173, n.27. [return]
78. Heller, 1983, p.148. [return]
79. Heller, 1983, p.148. [return]
80. Ibid. [return]
81. Heller, 1983, pp.148-149. [return]
82. Heller, 1983, p.149. [return]
83. Latendresse, M., 2010, "Shroud Scope: Durante 2002: Horizontal," (rotated left 90°), [return]
84. Heller, 1983, p.153; Rogers, 2008, p.36. [return]
85. Heller, 1983, p.153. [return]
86. Heller, 1983, p.154. [return]
87. Heller, 1983, p.141; Ruffin, C.B., 1999, "The Shroud of Turin: The Most Up-To-Date Analysis of All the Facts Regarding the Church's Controversial Relic," Our Sunday Visitor: Huntington IN, p.92; Guerrera, 2001, p.69. [return]
88. Heller, 1983, p.156. [return]
89. Ibid. [return]
90. Heller, 1983, pp.158-159; Heller, J.H. & Adler, A.D., 1981, "A Chemical Investigation of the Shroud of Turin," in Adler & Crispino, 2002, p.47; Scavone, 1989, p.62; Hoare, R., 1995, "The Turin Shroud Is Genuine: The Irrefutable Evidence," [1984], Souvenir Press: London, p.50; Petrosillo, O. & Marinelli, E., 1996, "The Enigma of the Shroud: A Challenge to Science," Scerri, L.J., transl., Publishers Enterprises Group: Malta, p.215; Guerrera, 2001, p.69. [return]
91. Heller, 1983, pp.159-160. [return]
92. Heller, 1983, p.160. [return]
93. Heller, 1983, pp.160-161. [return]
95. Heller, 1983, p.165. [return]
96. Heller, 1983, pp.213-214. [return]
97. Heller, 1983, p.214. [return]
98. Heller, 1983, p.215. [return]
99. Heller, J.H. & Adler, A.D., 1981, "A Chemical Investigation of the Shroud of Turin," in Adler & Crispino, 2002, p.52. [return]
100. Heller, 1983, pp.215-216. [return]
113. Heller, 1983, p.216. [return]
102. Ibid. [return]
103. Adler, A.D., 1991, "Conservation and Preservation of the Shroud of Turin," in Adler & Crispino, 2002, pp.67-71, 67. [return]
104. "Forensic statistics," Wikipedia, 8 November 2018. [return]
105. Stevenson & Habermas, 1981, pp.127-128. [return]
106. Stevenson & Habermas, 1981, pp.126-127. [return]
107. Wilson, I., 2001, "Letters to the Editor," British Society for the Turin Shroud Newsletter, No. 54, November, pp.66-67, 67. [return]
108. Wilson, I., 1988, "The Carbon Dating Results: Is This Now the End?," BSTS Newsletter, No. 20, October, pp.2-10, 4. [return]
109. Wilson, I., 1979, "The Shroud of Turin: The Burial Cloth of Jesus Christ?," [1978], Image Books: New York NY, Revised edition, pp.51-53. [return]
110. Stevenson & Habermas, 1981, pp.121-129. [return]
111. Stevenson. & Habermas, 1981, p.128. [return]
112. Schafersman, S.D., 1982, "Science, the public, and the Shroud of Turin," The Skeptical Inquirer, Vol. 6, No. 3, Spring, pp.37-56, 42; in Nickell, J., 1987, "Inquest on the Shroud of Turin," [1983], Prometheus Books: Buffalo NY, Revised, Reprinted, 2000, p.141. [return]
113. Heller, 1983, p.154. [return]
114. Wilson, I., 2000, "Obituaries: Dr Alan Adler," BSTS Newsletter, No. 51, June. [return]
116. Wilson, 1998, p.80; Ruffin, 1999, p.96; de Wesselow, T., 2012, "The Sign: The Shroud of Turin and the Secret of the Resurrection," Viking: London, p.105. [return]
117. Zurer, P., 1983, "Archaeological Chemistry," Chemical & Engineering News, 21 February, p.35, in Stevenson & Habermas, 1990, pp.40-41; Ruffin, 1999, p.151; Guerrera, 2001, pp.74-75. [return]

Posted 21 April 2019. Updated 30 April 2024.

Saturday, April 13, 2019

March 1989: On this day 30 years ago in the radiocarbon dating of the Turin Shroud

© Stephen E. Jones[1]

This is part #15, "March 1989" [originally "April 1989"] of my series, "On this day 30 years ago in the radiocarbon dating of the Turin Shroud." For more information about this series, see part #1. Installments will be to the whole post and not specifically linked. Emphases are mine unless otherwise indicated.

[Index #1] [Previous: 16Feb89: #14] [Next: 23May89 #16]

March 1989 In the Northern Hemisphere Spring (i.e. March-May) of

[Above (enlarge)[2]: Karl Koch (1965–89). "The hacker Karl Koch was only 23 years old. On 1 June 1989 they found his burnt corpse in a forest near Gifhorn (Lower Saxony) [about 63 km (39 mi.) from Hanover, Germany]"[3].]

1989, a well-known American Shroud author ["Harry" - see below], whose name I know, but who does not want to be publicly identified [he clarified by email today, 17 April 2019, that the "reason ... has nothing to do with the phone call per se"], received a late night phone call from a distraught male with a German-sounding accent [see 01Jun16, 02Jun16, 24Oct16 & 15Jul18].

"Harry" had originally said that this phone call was " probably around April 1989" [see 01Jun16 & 02Jun16.] but now his "best guess" is that it was in March of that year (see below). So I have changed the title of this email from "April 1989 ..." to "March 1989 ..." and links to it, as well as, where applicable, changed "April" to "March" in this post.

As quoted by Joe Marino, who this Shroud author told it to, a "distraught" German-sounding male phoned a "prominent Shroud researcher, who does not want to be identified" and begged forgiveness for "falsifying the results of the 1988 dating" through "espionage":

"1989 Spring. A prominent Shroud researcher, who does not want to be identified, has told only a few other Shroud researchers, including myself, about a curious phone call he had received one day at about 1:30 in the morning. His recollection was that it was not long after the C-14 dating results were announced in October 1988 and sometime in the spring. I will call the researcher `Harry.' Harry indicated the (male) person, who did not apologize for calling so late, sounded distraught. The person told Harry he had been involved in falsifying the results of the 1988 dating. Harry thought the accent might have been German and thought the person was in his 40s but wasn't sure because of the accent and emotional nature of the call. The person would not reveal his name (the person claimed it wasn't important) or from where he was calling. He kept asking Harry if he would forgive him for having done a disservice to humanity. The person even mentioned the word `espionage' in relation to the event. The only detail he gave about the procedure was saying that the real Shroud sample was thrown in the trash. Harry tried repeatedly to get the man to identify himself and when he (Harry) tried to get more details, the man said he couldn't say more as he could get in some real trouble. Harry said the person said he also planned to call other Shroud researchers, but as far as we know, no one ever did. Harry has wondered over the years whether the call itself could have been a fraud, but he is firm that the person sounded distraught to the point that Harry said he wouldn't have been surprised if the guy would have said `I've got a gun and I'm going to shoot myself.' Even now, Harry just isn't sure what to think"[4].
For this caller having been Koch:
• "it was not long after the C-14 dating results were announced in October 1988 and sometime in the spring." A hoaxer would not have waited ~6 months after the 13 October 1988 announcement that the Shroud's radiocarbon date was "1260-1390" nor even ~2 months after the 16 February 1989 Nature article which `confirmed' that dating, but would have `struck while the iron was hot.' But if Koch, who had became a Christian in late 1988/early 1989[5], had realised when the 1989 Nature article came out that the program (Linick's) he had installed for the KGB on computers in laboratories in Zurich and Oxford, had generated those laboratories' false "mediaeval ... 1260-1390" radiocarbon dates of the Shroud, he would likely have felt guilty and sought forgiveness from a Shroud author well-known even in Germany.

• "the (male) person ... sounded distraught." The caller sounded so "distraught" to `Harry' that he remembered it long afterwards and even told other Shroud researchers about it. It would be hard for a hoaxer who is not a trained actor to sound so distraught that it would leave a lasting impression on `Harry,' who is not someone who would be easily fooled.

• "The person... had been involved in falsifying the results of the 1988 dating." If it was Koch and he did hack Zurich and Oxford's radiocarbon dating computers (according to my theory), then that is exactly what he had been involved in. This nullifies the Against (see below) that the caller claimed to have (literally) thrown the Shroud sample in the trash.

• "Harry thought the accent might have been German." Koch was German. Why would a hoaxer fake a German accent? Or if he was a German hoaxer, phoning `Harry' in the USA from Germany, why would he do that? `Harry' had nothing to do with the 1988 radiocarbon dating. And as far as I know, he had not in 1988-89 written or spoken about it. But Harry had authored a popular pre-1988 book supporting the authenticity of the Shroud that could have been given to Koch by his new Christian friends.

• "The person would not reveal his name (the person claimed it wasn't important) or from where he was calling." A hoaxer could have given a false name and a vague or false location (e.g. "the USA"), but Koch, since he was now a Christian, would not be able to tell the truth of who he was and where he was calling from, but neither could he lie.

• "He kept asking Harry if he would forgive him for having done a disservice to humanity." A hoaxer would be most unlikely to ask `Harry' for forgiveness for having done a disservice to humanity." But the new Christian Koch, if he had played a part in falsifying the Shroud's carbon dating, might well have.

• "The person even mentioned the word `espionage' in relation to the event." This is the strongest evidence that the caller was Koch. Under then West German law there was a standing amnesty for those who confessed to the crime of espionage, providing it was before it was discovered and they then cooperated fully:

"In the summer of 1988 both Pengo [Hans Heinrich Hübner] and Koch, independently, approached the authorities, hoping to take advantage of an amnesty provision in German espionage legislation. This provision guaranteed lenient treatment to those who had not previously been under suspicion and now confessed, provided they co-operated fully. The two confessed to espionage, the only offence covered by the amnesty. Paradoxically, confessing to any lesser offence could have resulted in a severer penalty"[6].

"Several months after Pengo's unexpected trip to the prosecutor's office and his confession [in July 1988], he discovered just how fortunate his timing had been. It turned out that Hagbard [Koch] had done exactly the same thing at the advice of his own lawyer a few weeks before Pengo did. The handling of the two cases was strikingly parallel. Hagbard's lawyer, too, had invoked a section of the amnesty provision in the espionage laws and had his client turn himself in. It was a close call, to be sure. If Pengo had waited even another week, the authorities might have been ready to open a formal case against him, and might not have offered him the promise of lenient treatment"[7].
It would have been most unlikely that a hoaxer would know that (bearing in mind that a hoaxer would not be pretending to confess to hacking the Shroud's dating), and he would not use the word "espionage" to describe his "falsifying the results of the 1988 dating" or his throwing "the real Shroud sample ... in the trash." But if the caller was Koch and he did hack Zurich and Oxford's Shroud dating computers, then "espionage" (or hacking) would be exactly the word he would have used in his confession to `Harry' what he had done to the Shroud's dating!

• "the man said he couldn't say more as he could get in some real trouble." A hoaxer would not "get in some real trouble" even if he gave `Harry' his true name and location. But if Koch had hacked Zurich and Oxford's AMS computers on behalf of the KGB he definitely "could get in some real trouble" if he told `Harry' more and the KGB found out about it. In fact, see next.

• "Harry said the person said he also planned to call other Shroud researchers, but as far as we know, no one ever did." If the KGB, or its surrogate the East German Stasi, were monitoring Koch's phone calls, it may have been this very phone call by Koch to `Harry' (which would have been late May [however `Harry' replied by email today, 17 April, that his "best guess" was the phone call was in March]) that led to Koch's abduction, torture and murder made to look like suicide by the Stasi/KGB (see future "23May89"). That would explain why the caller planned to phone other Shroud researchers but never did. [But equally if Koch was warned by the KGB after his March call to "Harry" and Koch had heeded that warning not to phone Shroud researchers, but Koch was still talking to others about his hacking of Zurich and Oxford laboratories' Shroud's radiocarbon dating computers, that would also explain why the KGB decided to permanently silence Koch in late May 1989]. Moreover, Koch's fear that his phone calls were being monitored by the Stasi/KGB would explain why he was not more specific in describing to `Harry' how he had "falsif[ied] the results of the 1988 dating." Indeed if the caller (Koch) had told `Harry' that he had hacked Zurich and Oxford's AMS computers for the KGB, then `Harry' might have been killed by the KGB also (as Linick was [see 22Feb16])!

• "Harry has wondered over the years whether the call itself could have been a fraud, but he is firm that the person sounded distraught to the point that Harry said he wouldn't have been surprised if the guy would have said `I've got a gun and I'm going to shoot myself.' Even now, Harry just isn't sure what to think." Clearly 'Harry' does not think the caller was a fraud, because if he did he would have dismissed it long ago. Also see above that the caller would have had to have been a trained actor to have fooled `Harry'.

Against this caller having been Koch:
•"Harry ... thought the person was in his 40s." Koch was nearly 24 (23.05.1989-22.7.1965 = 23 years and 10 months old)[2]. But Harry "wasn't sure because of the accent and emotional nature of the call." Also, we don't know how old Koch sounded on the phone.

• "The only detail he gave about the procedure was saying that the real Shroud sample was thrown in the trash." This cannot have been literally what the caller meant. He had previously told `Harry' that "he had been involved in falsifying the results of the 1988 dating." Falsifying the results of the 1988 dating does not cover throwing the Shroud sample in the trash. There would not have been any "1988 dating" if the Shroud sample was in the trash! As the composite photograph below of the Shroud sub-samples show, the sample cut

[Above (enlarge)[8]: Extract of a composite photograph of the Shroud sub-samples, cut from the Shroud on 21 April 1988 (see 21Apr88). Their different textures are explained by some having been photographed from the underside. The sub-samples given to the laboratories to carbon-date were: a and d Arizona, b Zurich and c Oxford. e was retained by the Turin Archdiocese. To the right of the laboratories' sub-samples a, b and c are trimmings removed by Turin's Giovanni Riggi (1935-2008) and retained by him. The bottom right-hand triangular piece was that which was given to Prof. Gilbert Raes (1914-2001) in 1973 to study and returned to Turin by him in 1977 [see 15Aug17].]

from the Shroud, subdivided into sub-samples and given to the three laboratories was that which was dated. Clearly this "distraught," "emotional" and presumably "German" caller was speaking figuratively, and he meant the German equivalent of that he had `trashed' the Shroud.

There are four basic options:
1. The caller was a hoaxer, either faking a German accent, or actually a German, either phoning `Harry' from within the USA or internationally.

2. The caller was someone present at the 21 April 1988 cutting of the Shroud sample in Turin Cathedral and the subdividing of that sample into sub-samples which were given to the three laboratories. And he literally threw the Shroud sample into the trash.

3. The caller was Koch's fellow hacker, Hans Heinrich Hübner, who was the only person other than Koch at that time who confessed to "espionage" for his hacking of business, government and military computers for the KGB, to take advantage of the amnesty for those crimes under then West German law.

4. The caller was German hacker for the KGB, Karl Koch, who was the only person other than Hübner at that time who confessed to "espionage" for his hacking of business, government and military computers for the KGB, to take advantage of the amnesty for those crimes under then West German law. And who after that became a Christian and (according to my theory), realised after reading the 16 February 1989 Nature article, that the Zurich and Oxford laboratory computers on which he had installed a program for the KGB, had helped generate the bogus "mediaeval ... 1260-1390" radiocarbon date of the Shroud[9].

Option 2 can be eliminated. On 21 April 1988 in Turin Cathedral, a sample was cut from the Shroud, and that sample was subdivided into sub-samples which were given to the three laboratories to carbon-date. For the caller to have literally thrown the Shroud sample in the trash he would have to have been one of those present. The only person present who had a German-sounding accent, as far as I am aware, was the Director of Zurich laboratory, Willy Wolfli[10], who presumably was Swiss. But he was evidently a non-Christian[11] and an anti-authenticist[12], so he would not have been distraught (to put it mildly) that the Shroud's carbon date was medieval. And even if Wolfli (or anyone else) wanted to, he could not have thrown the Shroud sample in the trash without it being noticed by others present. And as we saw above the sub-samples given to the three laboratories on 21 April 1988 were the samples that were carbon dated.

Option 1, the caller was a hoaxer, can also be eliminated for reasons given above: a hoaxer would not have waited ~6 months after the 13 October 1988 announcement that the Shroud had carbon dated "1260-1390"; he would have had to be a trained actor to sound so distraught that it left a lasting impression on `Harry' who is not one to be easily fooled; a hoaxer would not have phoned `Harry' who had nothing to do with the 1988 radiocarbon dating, nor had he written or publicly said anything about it; a hoaxer could have given a false name and a vague or false location, or even given his real name and location; and finally a hoaxer would not have used the word "espionage" to describe his "falsifying the results of the 1988 [Shroud] dating", as that was the very crime under then West German law which attracted an amnesty, and to which the German hackers Karl Koch and Hans Heinrich Hübner had confessed to less than a year before.

Option 3, the caller was Koch's fellow hacker Hans Heinrich Hübner, can also be eliminated. While only he and Koch would have used the word "espionage" to describe their confessed crimes of hacking, unlike Koch, there is no evidence that I am aware of that Hübner became a Christian at that time, and so could have been "distraught" at the Shroud having been falsified by the 1988 radiocarbon dating.

That leaves remaining only option 4, the caller was German hacker for the KGB, Karl Koch. As we saw above: Koch was the only person other than Hübner at that time who confessed to "espionage" for hacking on behalf of the KGB, to come under the amnesty for that crimes under then West German law; Koch "could get in some real trouble" if he had hacked Zurich and Oxford's radiocarbon dating computers for the KGB (according to my theory) and told `Harry' more about that; and Koch became a Christian in 1988/89 and so could have become distraught when he realised after the publication of the 1989 Nature article, that the program he had installed for the KGB on computers in Zurich and Oxford laboratories, had helped "falsif[y] the results of the 1988 dating."

In view of option 4 above, this phone caller to a "prominent Shroud researcher, who does not want to be identified" [`Harry'] by a "distraught" German-sounding male, who begged "forgive[ness]" for "falsifying the results of the 1988 dating" through "espionage," can only have been Karl Koch! It is therefore a `two factor authentication' of my hacking theory that:

"[T]he 1988 radiocarbon dating of the Shroud of Turin as `mediaeval ... AD 1260-1390'[13] was the result of a computer hacking, allegedly by Arizona radiocarbon dating laboratory physicist Timothy W. Linick (1946-89)[14], aided by German hacker Karl Koch (1965–89)[15], on behalf of the former Soviet Union, through its agency the KGB" [23Jul15].]
To be continued in the next part #16 of this series.

1. This post is copyright. I grant permission to quote from any part of it (but not the whole post), provided it includes a reference citing my name, its subject heading, its date, and a hyperlink back to this page. [return]
2. Photo, "In memory of Karl Koch. Hagbard Celine. 22.7.1965. 23.05.1989." Translated by Google. [return]
3. Clauss, U., 2012, "Ancestor of the Pirate Party was charred in the forest," Die Welt, 25 May 2012. Translated by Google. [return]
4. Marino, J.G., 2016, "The Politics of the Radiocarbon Dating of the Turin Shroud, Part III: Post-April 21st, 1988," 9 September. [return]
5. Hafner, K. & Markoff, J., 1991, "Cyberpunk: Outlaws and Hackers on the Computer Frontier," Corgi: London, reprinted, 1993, p.302. [return]
6. Clough, B. & Mungo, P., 1992, "Approaching Zero: Data Crime and the Computer," Faber & Faber: London & Boston, pp.183-184. [return]
7. Hafner & Markoff, 1991, pp.267, 277. [return]
8. Wilson, I., 2010, "The Shroud: The 2000-Year-Old Mystery Solved," Bantam Press: London, p.88. [return]
9. Damon, P.E., et al., 1989, "Radiocarbon Dating of the Shroud of Turin," Nature, Vol. 337, 16 February, pp.611-615, 611. [return]
10. Guerrera, V., 2001, "The Shroud of Turin: A Case for Authenticity," TAN: Rockford IL, p.125. [return]
11. Sox, H.D., 1988, "The Shroud Unmasked: Uncovering the Greatest Forgery of All Time," The Lamp Press: Basingstoke UK, p.139. [return]
12. Sox, 1988, p.135. [return]
13. Damon, 1989, p.611. [return]
14. Jull, A.J.T. & Suess, H.E., 1989, "Timothy W. Linick," Radiocarbon, Vol 31, No 2. [return]
15. "Karl Koch (hacker)," Wikipedia, 9 February 2019. [return]

Posted: 13 April 2019. Updated: 3 February 2021.

Thursday, April 11, 2019

"News and Editorial," Shroud of Turin News, March 2019

Shroud of Turin News - March 2019
© Stephen E. Jones

[Previous: February 2019, part #1] [Next: April 2019, part #1]

This is the March 2019 issue of my Shroud of Turin News. I have listed below linked news article(s) about the Shroud in March as a service to readers, without necessarily endorsing any of them.

From Joe Marino:

[Left: "News Just In"]

"Dear Researchers, A Catholic News Agency story just came out pertaining to the 1978 photos taken by the late Vern Miller of STURP. See: The link to the site (, published by former STURP member Tom D'Muhala and Dr. Gil Lavoie, M.D., is hot linked in the article. Regards, Joe"

• "An unexpected encounter with the Shroud of Turin," Catholic Vancouver, March 13, 2019, Agnieszka Ruck:

"When Deacon Pete Schumacher began working in image

[Right (enlarge): Pete Schumacher with a VP-8 image analyzing machine at his Shroud of Turin museum in Alamagordo, N.M.]

processing and remote sensing ... In 1972, Schum-acher was broke and not practising his faith when he got a job manufacturing the VP-8 Image Analyzer, a machine used by ... researchers to study images. Four years later ... he was asked to install the machine for Air Force Academy professors Eric Jumper and John Jackson. He travelled to Jumper's home and set up the machine, then the men slipped Schumacher an unknown photo and asked him to show them how the machine worked. Without a clue as to what the odd-looking photo was, Schumacher placed it on the machine ... "the next thing I knew, I was looking at a 3D image of a person." The photo Jumper and Jackson had slipped him was of the Shroud of Turin ... The machine ... had illuminated the face of a crucified man. ... said Schumacher. The machine "simply doesn't do that with a photograph." ... "I wasn't very religious at the time, and I didn't know what the Shroud of Turin was," he said. ... Then in 1978, a team of scientists (including Jumper) launched the Shroud of Turin Research Project and flew to Turin, Italy, for an intense, in-depth study of the linen itself. ... Releasing their findings in a 1981 report, the scientists said although they couldn't work out how an image appeared on the cloth, it is "a real human form of a scourged, crucified man. It is not the product of an artist." Intrigued by the report's findings, Schumacher felt a growing desire to learn more about that crucified man he first met on his VP-8. He eventually came to a firm belief that the Shroud of Turin does reveal the face of Jesus, and in the process, his faith was so strengthened that he was ordained a Catholic deacon in 2009."

Posts: In March I blogged 5 new posts (latest uppermost): "Acts of Thaddeus: Turin Shroud Encyclopedia," - 28th; "`wrong is the radiocarbon dating of Shroud of Turin in the consequence of biological isotopfractionation'," - 20th; "acheiropoietos: Turin Shroud Encyclopedia," - 13th; "`News and Editorial,' Shroud of Turin News, February 2019" - 10th; "Accetta, August: Turin Shroud Encyclopedia," - 7th.

Comments: In March I received the following comments:

• Under my "New tests by Prof. Giulio Fanti show the Shroud of Turin could date from the time of Christ," post, a would-be-commenter tried to post a "comment in 2 halves." But I deleted those comments, according to my policy, which:

"As I have stated before [e.g. 09Dec17], the comments area on this MY blog is for commenting on MY posts. It is NOT a vehicle for others to post THEIR material on the Shroud, without reference to my post their comment is under. If I allowed that, commenters could turn MY blog into THEIR blog!"
• An anonymous comment under my, "`News and Editorial,' Shroud of Turin News, February 2019" that Dan Porter's blog had re-opened. I responded that I was not surprised. I looked at Porter's new posts and "it is still the old anti-authenticity masquerading as `open minded' scepticism." So,"I will ignore Porter's blog." I reiterated my "policy of this blog, that posting comments about Porter's blog here is off-topic and such comments will ... not appear."• I deleted an anonymous comment under my, "`News and Editorial,' Shroud of Turin News, February 2019," which was an ad hominem personal attack on me. I repeat what I wrote recently [14Feb19] about another anti-authenticist personal attack on me:
"I deleted an anti-authenticist mocking comment in January. If anti-authenticists knew deep down that they had truth on their side, their comments would reflect a polite serenity. But instead their nasty `body language' tells me that deep down they fear they are wrong!" [which they are!]
Updates In March, from memory, there were no significant updates in the background of my past posts.

Radiocarbon dating of the Shroud. In March I posted as "Breaking News" in my "`wrong is the radiocarbon dating of Shroud of Turin in the consequence of biological isotopfractionation'," post (now removed from there), from Joe Marino, the following has just been published [Left: "Breaking News & Sports - Home - Facebook"] online in Archaeometry: "RADIOCARBON DATING OF THE TURIN SHROUD: NEW EVIDENCE FROM RAW DATA * T. CASABIANCA† Ajaccio 20000, France E. MARINELLI Collegamento pro Sindone, Rome, Italy G. PERNAGALLO Department of Economics and Business, University of Catania, Corso Italia 55, 95129 Catania CT, Italy and B. TORRISI Department of Economics and Business, University of Catania, Corso Italia 55, 95129 Catania CT, Italy

Abstract: In 1988, three laboratories performed a radiocarbon analysis of the Turin Shroud. The results, which were centralized by the British Museum and published in Nature in 1989, provided ‘conclusive evidence’ of the medieval origin of the artefact. However, the raw data were never released by the institutions. In 2017, in response to a legal request, all raw data kept by the British Museum were made accessible. A statistical analysis of the Nature article and the raw data strongly suggests that homogeneity is lacking in the data and that the procedure should be reconsidered."
I will blog on this after this post [see 29May19].

My book: [see 10Mar19 and links]. In March I continued writing Chapter 2, "A linen sheet," of my book, "The Shroud of Turin: The Burial Sheet of Jesus!" I became bogged

[Right (enlarge): The planned cover of my book.]

down on the sidestrip, which I thought I knew all about!

Pageviews: At midnight on 1 April 2019 (because my computer was undergoing repairs on 31 March), Google Analytics [Below (enlarge)] gave this blog's "Pageviews all time history" as 1,036,720. This compares with 871,539 at the same time in March 2018

(albeit 1 day less). That is 165,183 pageviews over the past 12 months (and 1 day), or an average of 165,183/366 = ~451 pageviews per day.

Google Analytics also gave the most viewed posts for the month (highest uppermost) as: "Shroud name index `J'," Apr 1, 2008 - 132; "Re: Shroud blood ... types as AB ... aged blood always types as AB, so the significance of this ... is unclear," Mar 18, 2011 - 120; "`wrong is the radiocarbon dating of Shroud of Turin in the consequence of biological isotopfractionation'," Mar 20, 2019 - 63; "Accetta, August: Turin Shroud Encyclopedia," Mar 7, 2019 - 63; "Shroud of Turin News, December 2015," Jan 5, 2016 - 54.

1. This post is copyright. I grant permission to extract or quote from any part of it (but not the whole post), provided the extract or quote includes a reference citing my name, its title, its date, and a hyperlink back to this page. [return]

Posted: 11 April 2019. Updated: 30 May 2019.