So who really killed JFK?
A few weeks ago, we got together with some friends for another Saturday night of good food and conversation.
We discussed the subject of another movie about the Kennedy assassination that was being filmed around Dealy Plaza. Naturally, a good family friend raised the conspiracy question. I stayed a bit quiet, because another "who shot JFK" conversation is the last thing that I want to talk about.
However, I had to say something when it came around to me.
I said that I believe that Oswald did it, or pretty much the official conclusion.
A week after President Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, his successor, President Johnson, created the Warren Commission to investigate the murder:
During its almost year-long investigation, the Warren Commission reviewed reports by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Secret Service, Department of State and the attorney general of Texas. It also poured over Oswald’s personal history, political affiliation and military record. Overall, the Warren Commission listened to the testimony of 552 witnesses and even traveled to Dallas several times to visit the site where Kennedy was shot. The commission concluded that Oswald had acted alone and that the Secret Service had made poor preparations for JFK’s visit to Dallas and had subsequently failed to sufficiently protect him.
We've had a lot of books and films since the commission made that conclusion. I remember that a lot of authors brought their papers and books to a JFK conference held around here in 1993, or the 30th anniversary. I heard some of their presentations. I even heard comments about a minister who spoke with Jack Ruby at the Dallas city jail.
Some of the authors made strong cases, although I still don't know how the conspirators could keep a secret that long. In other words, it's hard to believe that so many people could stay quiet.
Some of movies were just bizarre and irresponsible, such as Oliver Stone's JFK. I remember watching the movie in 1991 and going home furious. The movie was absurd, a hate piece against the U.S.
One of my favorite books, and the one that persuaded me that The Warren Commission got it right, was Case Closed by Gerard Posner. As I read in a recent book review:
Like Mr. Posner, I firmly believe that Oswald, by himself, was responsible for the murders of JFK and Dallas city policeman J.D. Tippit. And while re-reading "Case Closed" recently, I came across many outstanding hunks of fascinating text, including a good collection of direct quotes from various individuals that were placed into the book by author Posner in his efforts to provide the reader with a complete picture of Lee Harvey Oswald, the man who was charged with killing America's 35th President in Dallas.
I've listed some of what I think are this book's most intriguing passages and quotes below, which give a good general indication as to the type of person Lee Oswald truly was (i.e., a strange, disconnected, secretive, violent, and abusive young man who embraced Communism and hated the American society he was living in).
In other words -- Lee Harvey Oswald was the exact type of individual who might just have had an urge to take his mail-order rifle with him to work one day (a day when the President's motorcade was scheduled to pass right in front of the building he worked in) and fire a few shots at JFK from a secluded sixth-story perch.
The evidence in the John F. Kennedy murder case, in fact, tells the world that Mr. Oswald did that very thing on Friday, November 22, 1963.
We will never know 100%, because life is that way. However, put me down as one who believes that the Warren Commission got it right. It's a testament to the integrity of the commission, made up by very good people, including future president Ford.
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