You are also discounting other witnesses.
Some of the pieces could be stated:
1. Witnesses in the Marshall's and the Mariana's state that they have or have known people who saw them.
2. Witnesses in the Gilbert's who heard a plane flying by at about the correct time (it was night but they were expecting them). Therefore, they were on the correct route to Howland.
3. Itasca receive 5 by 5 signal from them, meaning they were close to Howland.
4. The amount of fuel carried, it is doubtful that they would make it to the Marshall's from Howland. And why would they fly there instead of the Pheonix or Gilbert Islands which were closer.
5. Aircraft parts found on Mili Atoll.
6. Aircraft parts found on Nikumaroro.
7. And other pieces which are covered in all the books on the subject.
All these, and others, have to be reconciled to have a complete picture.
So, it can be said that the least likely are:
a. Earhart returned to the US and lived in New Jersey under another name.
b. Earhart became a geisha and lived in Japan.
c. They were spying.
The Marshall scenario would be some where above least likely.
Most likely they were lost at sea.
Nikumaroro is some where below most likely.
Until more information becomes available.
: Until they find proof that they crashed in the
: ocean you can't totally reject the other
: possibility. Crashing in the ocean is
: certainly possible, maybe probable but it
: remains unproven. As for witnesses with
: knowledge, there WERE witnesses who
: testified to them being in the Marshalls.
: The fact is that those who reject the notion
: that the Japanese had them, refuse to accept
: those witnesses as evidence.
: --Previous Message--
: One would be talking about dozens if not
: hundreds of individuals with knowledge of
: the facts. Secrets of that scope don't stay
: secret. We had a President of the United
: States, ostensibly the most powerful man in
: the world, who couldn't get his trailer
: hitch polished in the privacy of his own
: office, and it became huge international
: Earhart and Noonan ran out of fuel and went
: down in the Pacific
: --Previous Message--
: ... was published in a Japanese book in
: Two years before she disappeared.
: Now now, History Channel, let me get a
: napkin to wipe that egg from your face...