Assassination of John F Kennedy


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Paper Outline

  1. Introduction
  2. Assassination of John F Kennedy
  3. Early Critics
  4. The Garrison Investigation
  5. Church Committee And The Castro Plots
  6. House Select Committee On Assassinations
  7. Conclusion


Assassination of John F Kennedy


Assassination of John F Kennedy is termed as the most contentious issue in the Modern American History. While some Americans believe it was a conspiracy, others attribute it to the Twenty four year old Lee Harvey Oswald. In that connection, if the conspiracy aspect should be suspected of the assassination of the American President, was Oswald involved. As mentioned, the murder of John F Kennedy remains a controversial aspect since then to the present day (Barger 79). This paper discusses on the possibility of the president’s death being a conspiracy and the facts that suggest it could have been the case. It seeks to establish the reasons as to why Lee Harvey was a suspect in this murder.

Assassination of John F Kennedy – Friday, November 1963

The American President, John F Kennedy, was assassinated when the atmosphere was extremely tense with the cold war. This happened immediately the global world was healing from a nuclear disaster. While the legendary of a lost historical-fantasy drama developed since his murder, the John F Kennedy reign was characterized with diverse nervousness and crises. It was during the time, when the Civil Rights Movement had gathered up some momentum, but later sparred with resistance especially in the southern part. It was the same time 1960s, when Robert, the president’s brother, who by then was the attorney General declared an exceptional fight on pre-arranged crime. By then, Cuba was known to the most severe Foreign Policy hotspot- Castro was in authority at the time of Eisenhower regime and plans to remove him from power and murder was still in progress during the reign of John F Kennedy.

Vietnam by then was a bubbling problem that would only come into full moonlight during the Johnson Regime. The country suffered from both foreign policy issues and domestic chaos, which torn it into two, together with John F Kennedy regime. The society was in complete disaster as almost everyone had a drive to take away life. Before then, and after the assassination of the Kennedy, documentaries, declassifications and individual accounts have supplemented to the image of a presidency inundated from within and without the country. However, the question still holds, yet has no consensus, that which of these motives, if there was any that led to the assassination of American President, John F Kennedy (Bowles 54).

The American President, John F Kennedy assassination, was highly surprising. He was murdered while in his motorcade through the Dealey Plaza in Dallas at 12:30PM CST on Friday, November 1963. He was thereafter rushed to the parkland hospital where any attempts to save his life were not successful. After he was dead, his body was removed from the hospital. This was against the wishes of the Texas Authorities and his body was flown back to Washington together with his wife, Jackie and his successor, President Lyndon Johnson. Burial ceremony took place at Bethesda Naval Health check.

An autopsy was conducted at Bethesda Naval Hospital, and he was buried at Arlington National (Donald 17). Later on, Lee Harvey Oswald, who was a former Marine and defector to the Soviet Union, was put behind bars. He was alleged of killing a police officer, by the name of J.D Tippit. Lee protested against the charges, and to make it worse he was brought before the world and accused of murdering the American President, John F Kennedy. Lee shortcomings and Marxists sympathies were swiftly covered in the media. The reasons of the quick covering of Lee shortcomings were instigated by the fact that his inquisitive pro-Castro Involvement during the summer time in New Orleans had raised eyebrows of the local Cuban Exiles. As investigations continued, Lee was also cross-examined, but nothing was recorded.

Lee Harvey Oswald was later killed on Sunday 24th. He was shot on limelight in the basement of Dallas Police Station. His death was connected to a planned crime, and in particular, Jack Ruby was thought to have killed him. After the murder of Lee Harvey Oswald, Federal authorities together with other renowned high muscled people in the government, for instance, the then FBI director, J. Edgar was on the forefront to close the case (Donald 1).

Memos were written concerning the murder of Lee, and that even if he would not have been murdered his case was still in progress, and he would have been convicted at trial. It was still not certain on what the government had done to ascertain the public on its safety. There was still a hidden agenda about Oswald, and this could indicate something fishy that was going wrong. While still there is no tangible proof regarding the individual involved in the annihilation of John F Kennedy, indirect proof in favor of the claims forwarded by the Texas representatives, shows that Oswald was an FBI spy and probably a U. S CIA. The concept that such a person would have been involved in the murder of the president would not be welcomed or would not rather be an excellent cover up (Donald 1).

In order to have a closer look on the issue, a commission was involved in order to have a deeper look into the case and any findings were to be forwarded to the succeeding president. The advocates referred by the name of the Blue –ribbon Panel came out victorious, and on November 29th, President Johnson signed an Executive Order 11130 which created a President’s commission led by the chief justice Earl Warren, from the supreme court. Sooner or later this was dubbed as the Warren Commission. The Warren Commission typically relied on the info it gathered from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and other bureaus, particularly the Central Intelligence Agency, the SSU and the State Unit. It relied on the staff of lawyers, but field investigators were never given an opportunity. From the transcripts of the executive sessions, it was clear that the commission experienced a lot of challenges with such an approach.

For instance, the commission could not determine the allegations on whether Oswald was an FBI informant as claimed. Though, the commission was thought to be transparent with the responsibility assigned to it, there were some critics that challenged its conduct. For instance, it was criticized the fact that, most people believed that there was not interview conducted with the witnesses. For instance, Dealey Plaza was never interviewed yet he witnessed the incident happening. In addition, Kennedy’s private medical doctor was also never interrogated in spite of being the only one who would have aided in resolving the inconsistencies that were taking place in reference to the health information. Most surprisingly, was the case of Jack Ruby, who was thought to be the most significant witness. His interrogation only happened once, and that was in 1964. Amazingly, his interrogation was conducted after reports had already been published. His plea to be transferred to Washington to reveal on what he knew fell on deaf years. Chief Justice Warren never offered him an opportunity.

Later on, it was revealed that the FBI and the CIA were holding very significant information since the investigations commenced. Some of the information withheld by the FBI and the CIA include but not limited to, CIA organized crime, incorporating the Mob, to murder the Cuban Leader Fidel Castro. The Warren Commission delivered their findings to President Johnson on September 24th 1964. From the report, they found that Oswald had murdered Kennedy, alone and without any aid. Similarly, Jack Ruby’s act of murdering Oswald was an impulsive act and not connected anywhere with any conspiracy. The media thereafter hailed that conclusion as thorough and independent and as extensive investigation of John F Kennedy assassination. The matter was thus closed.

Early Critics

The warren report was conducted by private individuals who also happened to have read the voluminous published proof that held the entire truth. There was a police officer who hurried to the place of the event but was barred by a person who alleged to be an agent, and he did, in fact, flash a badge. On the contrary, the warren commission found out that there were no secret service agents within the vicinity (“WA Report” 32).

There are many significant matters that ought to be addressed, for example, the question about tampering of evidence, managing items established in the snipers nest, and misidentification of the rifle that was used. Also, the description of Oswald was sent out on the police radio, how Oswald managed to defect to Soviet Union after learning Russian. In addition, many questions were asked to regard Oswald on how he managed to return with state money and the handling of the Odio Incident which were not adequately addressed by the commission. Then again, a number of issues like the contradictory statements about injuries were reported, but the manner in which they were resolved was dubious because it was intended to obtain a specific answer. Therefore, it seemed that the commission had decided at an unusually early stage, and it was able to mold the evidence which led to a preordained outcome (“US Congress” 76).

Mark Lane was responsible for criticizing the Warren Commission by writing essays and making speeches. The focus was shifted to the commission’s recreation on the shooting, and it was seen that the bolt-action rifle could only fire every 2.3 seconds. The question at hand was why Governor Connolly was wounded so soon after JFK. It is posited that the same bullet was used on both men, but he only suffered a late response despite having a smashed wrist and a broken rib (Weiss 32).

The Warren Commission was questioned by the public because of the many questions that the critics raised that were left unanswered such as the Dallas police, Ruby, Oswald and the single bullet theory. As a result, there were a lot of questions being asked by publications such as Saturday Evening Post and Life Magazine which resulted to the raise of a new kind of investigation by Attorney Jim Garrison.

The Garrison Investigation

The New Orleans District Attorney by the 1966 had been able to detain David Ferrie pilot who was connected to Oswald on the weekend of the shooting. The JFK assassination was quietly reinvestigated. Later on the Garrison investigation was announced by local reporters which made the world’s media to disembark on New Orleans (“National Research Council” 21).

However, the media started portraying Garrison as a charlatan because there were allegations of bribing of witnesses as well as other abuses. The damage had already been done, but he was able to fight the media with formidable success. Lastly, it was ruled out that Shaw was only connected to Oswald despite Perry Russo being the only witness to the case who alleged that the three had plotted to kill the president.      Garrison was able to uncover many leads, and he was able to find the address of the building that housed the anti-Communist Guy Banister on some of Oswald leaflets. In addition, the spouse to the CIA agent and the escritoire had told him that Oswald was linked-with the bureau because the agent had pointed-out that to them. Numerous onlookers were turned-out by Garrison who joined Oswald to Shaw which soon after brought about the discovery of Shaw’s links to the representatives of the Central Intelligence Agency. As a result, the C.I. A started monitoring Garrison activities because they were worried, and they also went to extraordinary measures to stop him.

Church Committee and the Castro Plots

Richard Nixon down fall lead to the ushering of new reforms that saw investigations being carried on the White House as well as the Intelligence agencies. President Gerald Ford used to the Rockefeller Commission to try, and control these but was soon outdated by Congressional investigations. The Senate committee was headed by Frank Church, which was the most prominent.

Far reaching investigations were carried out by the Church Committee which showed the abuses that were carried out by the intelligence agency. Some of the abuses include CIA-sponsored coups, wiretapping, illegal mail, and pestering of Martin Luther King by the FBI. Other notable abuses include the plot that was carried out by the CIA in trying to assassinate Fidel Castro. Therefore, the committee was not able to reach conclusions as to any form of involvement by the former presidents in trying to carry out plots to kill Castro. Richard Schweiker and Gary Hart formed a subcommittee that did oversee the assassination of JFK, but only place its focus on the role the FBI and CIA played in the Warren Commission. The report found out that the intelligence agencies had changed the process which led to their own conclusions. The evidence adduced shows that the investigations that were carried out on the assassination were deficient. Richard Schweiker stated that the assassination of JFK had been snuffed long before it had begun, and the Warren Commission was just a cover up. The report was able to uncover that it was all a significant frame-up which involved allegations that Castro was the one behind the assassination of JFK. An illegitimate reproduction of the Zapruder movie was exposed on TV for all people to see and it showed Kennedy being taken back-wards from a noticeable shot from a pricey car.

House Select Committee on Assassinations (Thomas 21).

The House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA), given the responsibility of examining the assassination of JFK and Martin Luther King, had a difficult time in commencing the investigations. Richard Sprague was to lead the probe, and he swiftly failed to adhere to the CIA stipulations when he refused to agree to the secrecy oaths that were meant to cover up the aspects of the Oswald in Mexico saga. Then, Burkley (a private medical doctor for Kennedy) whom warren commission has never interrogated, asked his legal representative to get in touch with the committee with accurate info that, Kennedy’s murder was not carried out by Oswald singlehandedly, but there were other individuals who took part in the crime. After a short while, Sprague was expelled from his job and was replaced by Burkley (Thomas 12).


As discussed herein, the issue on the assassination of John F Kennedy remains a contradicting matter in the history of America. For some and from the reports delivered to the President Johnson, Oswald was alleged to have killed the president and the report was remarkably clear to claim that he did it alone and unaided. This was to clear out the public uncertainty that the death of Kennedy was organized. Some allegations claimed that Oswald was an FBI informant and CIA agent. Commissions involving the investigation on the death of Kennedy were acutely secretive, and any participating party was required to adhere to that policy. Sprague refused to sign the secrecy oaths merely meant to cover up the evils conducted by Oswald in Mexico saga. Even though, he was charged with the responsibility of probing the issue, he was dismissed from his position and later replaced by Burkley.

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