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Who killed JFK?

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Who killed JFK?

Post by Ivan on Tue Nov 12, 2013 5:21 pm

My favourite history teacher at school used to warn us that the shortest questions were often the most difficult to answer. One such question was ‘What caused the First World War?’ Who killed John Fitzgerald Kennedy, the 35th President of the United States, in Dallas, Texas on 22 November 1963 is another. The Warren Commission concluded in 1964 that Kennedy was murdered by Lee Harvey Oswald acting alone, but the United States House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA) reported in 1978 that Kennedy was probably assassinated as a result of a conspiracy.
 
So who wanted to kill Kennedy? An angry husband? (Kennedy’s womanizing is legendary.) Right-wing Republicans? We know what bad losers they are and how much they hate it when a Democrat is in the White House. A handbill about Kennedy entitled ‘Wanted For Treason’ was circulating in Dallas on the day before the assassination.
 
These are the most likely suspects:-
 
The Mob
 
Kennedy’s father Joseph had mob ties during his time as a powerbroker and bootlegger, and he even used his mob connections to help JFK get elected. Because of that, the mob believed that the new Kennedy administration would leave them alone. However, JFK appointed his mob-buster younger brother Robert as attorney general.
 
Mafia godfather Carlos Marcello, facing trial and deportation, wanted to exact revenge on Kennedy. On 15 December 1985, Marcello, while serving time on federal charges, confessed to a fellow inmate (who happened to be an informant for the FBI): “Yeah, I had the son of a bitch killed. I’m glad I did. I’m sorry I couldn’t have done it myself.” Marcello died in 1993.
 
The CIA
 
Forensic historian Patrick Nolan is “very certain” that far right-wing CIA rogues, among them Richard Helms, James Angleton, David Phillips, and E. Howard Hunt, wanted “power, self-preservation and to stop Kennedys’ plan to make peace with Cuba and the Soviets”. They had the “means, motives and opportunity” to mastermind the assassinations of both JFK and his brother. He believes they hired hitmen, either from the Mafia or from foreign intelligence agencies. Hunt was later convicted of participating in the Watergate scandal
 
Cubans
 
One theory is that Oswald killed Kennedy because he wanted to impress Fidel Castro. Might Castro or his agents have goaded or trained Oswald as retaliation for the Bay of Pigs invasion and the Cuban Missile Crisis?
 
Oswald went to Mexico City just over a month before the assassination to secure a visa for a visit to Cuba, but his application was turned down. He stayed there for a while and spent time at Hotel del Comercio, which had a reputation for being a safe house for Cuban spies.
 
Lee Harvey Oswald
 
Oswald was arrested about 70 minutes after the assassination for murdering a Dallas police officer. The officer had called Oswald over to his patrol car because he resembled the description of the suspect being sought in the assassination. Helen Markam testified that after an exchange of words, the officer got out of his car and Oswald shot him four times.
 
Oswald had lived in the Soviet Union. His case never came to trial because two days later, while being escorted to a car for transfer to the Dallas County Jail, he was shot and killed by Dallas nightclub owner Jack Ruby, live on American television. Arrested immediately after the shooting, Ruby later said that he had been distraught over the Kennedy assassination and that killing Oswald would spare Mrs Kennedy the discomfiture of coming back to a trial. But perhaps Ruby, who himself had shady connections, was assigned to shut up Oswald permanently.
 
Some eyewitness accounts put Oswald in the sixth-floor window at the time of the shots, and apparently there is physical evidence linking him to the murder weapon. However, Dallas police officer Marrion Baker and book depository superintendent Roy Truly both swore on oath that they saw Oswald on the second floor just moments after three shots had been fired from the sixth floor, bringing into question whether he could have been the killer.
 
Lyndon Baines Johnson
 
Just days before the assassination, JFK told his secretary that LBJ, who was then the vice president, would not be included on the 1964 ballot because of his implications in two financial corruption scandals.
 
If it wasn’t Oswald who fired from the sixth floor of the Texas School Book Depository building, maybe it was the notorious hitman Mac Wallace who had a long-standing relationship with LBJ and had had an affair with LBJ’s sister. One account claims that Wallace’s fingerprints were found on the sixth floor.
 
James Tague, who was hit in the face by shrapnel after one of the bullets ricocheted off the road, has spent his life investigating the assassination. He is convinced that the killing was ordered by LBJ and the FBI boss J Edgar Hoover. LBJ’s mistress, Madeleine Brown, claimed that LBJ told her on the eve of the assassination: “After tomorrow, those Kennedy S.O.B.’s will never embarrass me again.”
 
In 1968, a panel of four medical experts appointed by Attorney General Ramsey Clark met in Washington, D.C. to examine various photographs, X-ray films, documents, and other evidence about the death of President Kennedy. The Clark panel determined that President Kennedy was struck by two bullets fired from above and behind him. In 1978, the HSCA stated that there were at least four shots fired (only three of which could be linked to Oswald) and that there was a high probability that two gunmen fired at Kennedy.
 
A nurse who tried to save Kennedy, and who had had a great deal of experience of gunshot wounds, claims that she saw a different bullet in his neck to those later shown as evidence. Is it possible that a bodyguard in the car behind accidently discharged his weapon (a new Colt AR-15 with .223 ammo) in the instant of the car breaking in reaction to the shots for which Oswald was blamed, and that this was covered up? Or was he the second gunmen, put in place by LBJ and Hoover?
 
You decide. I’m still trying to decide what really caused the First World War……. scratch 
 
For many more details:-
 
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Assassination_of_John_F._Kennedy
 
http://nypost.com/2013/11/09/who-killed-kennedy-a-guide-to-the-conspiracy-theories/
 
http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/real-life-stories/james-tague-hit-shrapnel-john-2777815
 
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2496691/JFK-killed-mystery-bullet-Nurse-joined-desperate-attempts-save-President-death-claims-spotted-bizarre-pristine-bullet-neck-seen-again.html
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Re: Who killed JFK?

Post by oftenwrong on Tue Nov 12, 2013 5:41 pm

LBJ was apparently a hero to many Afro-Americans for having presided over positive changes to discriminatory laws and customs. However it may simply have coincided with a public opinion which modified whilst on his watch.

One unmistakable fact is that he lost no time in modifying the impetus of what had been JFK's ambitions for a less confrontational government.
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Re: Who killed JFK?

Post by Dan Fante on Wed Nov 13, 2013 9:27 am

I remember the 25th Anniversary (I think) and the absolutely terrible (thought I didn't realise at the time) documentary The Men Who Killed Kennedy which basically used a load of half truths and stuff that had already been well and truly debunked / disproven in order to try and show Lyndon B. Johnson was behind it all (which they wouldn't have done if he'd still been alive). I've been fascinated with it since and the only rational explanation is the lone gunman theory with Oswald being the assassin. There's a good website with loads of info about the assassination here: http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/home.htm
I believe BBC 4 are doing a series of documentaries for the 50th anniversary this month.
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Re: Who killed JFK?

Post by Dan Fante on Wed Nov 13, 2013 9:28 am

oftenwrong wrote:
One unmistakable fact is that he lost no time in modifying the impetus of what had been JFK's ambitions for a less confrontational government.
I take it you mean Vietnam?
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Re: Who killed JFK?

Post by oftenwrong on Wed Nov 13, 2013 11:24 am

JFK "won" the Cuban missile crisis standoff with Kruschev, but he resolved to try and avoid similar confrontation happening again. We shall never know whether President Kennedy might have reacted similarly to LBJ in Vietnam. But you can write down all the advantages which America gained from that little adventure on the back of a 5c. postage stamp.
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Re: Who killed JFK?

Post by Dan Fante on Wed Nov 13, 2013 11:45 am

Yeah, I guess we'll never know. I think it would've been difficult for the Kennedy administration not to have been dragged into Vietnam though. Who knows though?
Edit: apologies for going off topic.
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Re: Who killed JFK?

Post by Dan Fante on Wed Nov 13, 2013 12:08 pm

Ivan wrote: ... but the United States House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA) reported in 1978 that Kennedy was probably assassinated as a result of a conspiracy....the HSCA stated that there were at least four shots fired (only three of which could be linked to Oswald) and that there was a high probability that two gunmen fired at Kennedy.
That was based on audio evidence that was later shown to be recorded after Kennedy was shot. http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/acoustic.htm yet the documentary I mentioned was still citing it some ten years or so later. The same doc also relied heavily on the testimony of Gordon Arnold who seems like a grade-A bullshitter to me. Not least because of his ever changing version of events.
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Re: Who killed JFK?

Post by Tashski on Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:51 pm

When I was at university we had a lecture about dissertations (how to write a history dissertation etc) and one part of it was: "subjects/topics best avoided" > #1 the assassination of JFK. My lecturer, whose area of academic study is American history, said that it was a "mess of a topic and best avoided at all costs".

Having seen a few documentaries and read a few books on this subject I would agree with the "mess of a topic" comment. I don't think we will ever know the truth. My grandad (who was an excellent shot) said he believed 1) LHO was a lousy shot and 2) there was more than one shooter. It's not an area of history I am well read/schooled in but I am inclined to believe from the things I have read and seen there were shots fired from the grassy knoll (witnesses have claimed they heard shots from there) which if you look at where JFK was hit it seems the most likely spot to get an accurately fatal shot. Just my opinion.

re: causes of the First World War...everyone knows that it started because Archie Duke shot an ostrich!
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Re: Who killed JFK?

Post by Dan Fante on Thu Nov 14, 2013 9:53 am

Tashski wrote:Having seen a few documentaries and read a few books on this subject I would agree with the "mess of a topic" comment. I don't think we will ever know the truth. My grandad (who was an excellent shot) said he believed 1) LHO was a lousy shot and 2) there was more than one shooter. It's not an area of history I am well read/schooled in but I am inclined to believe from the things I have read and seen there were shots fired from the grassy knoll (witnesses have claimed they heard shots from there) which if you look at where JFK was hit it seems the most likely spot to get an accurately fatal shot. Just my opinion. 
 
Lee Harvey Oswald wasn't a lousy shot though. He was a slightly above average shot for a marine. That makes him an excellent shot compared to your average Joe (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lee_Harvey_Oswald#Marine_Corps). Also the book depository was a good spot from which to fire a fatal shot. It wasn't a difficult shot for a trained marksman at all and, since the motorcade was moving slowly and steadily away from him he had opportunities for multiple shots. In fact, the driver slowed the vehicle down to almost a standstill when the fatal shot was fired. Depending on which side of the fence you sit on I suppose he was either part of a conspiracy or he just blew it under pressure.
Here's the view:

Only bear in mind that Oswald would have had a telescopic scope and that photos can make the distance appear further away than it actually is. Obviously no one knows exactly what happened that day but the main reason, to my mind, that it's a 'mess of a topic' is because of all the bullshit that people have put about surrounding it which has been perpetuated even more by books, tv programmes and conspiracy websites that have either knowingly or unknowingly repeated lies and spread spurious stories about the events. Of course, that's what makes it all the more fascinating in a way. I think part of it is that people don't (and even more so at the time, didn't) like to think that a lone nut job could kill the most powerful man on the planet.
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Re: Who killed JFK?

Post by oftenwrong on Thu Nov 14, 2013 12:26 pm



I've always thought co-conspirators might have been rather happy to see Jack Ruby execute the main gunman suspect.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKoswald.htm
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Re: Who killed JFK?

Post by Tashski on Thu Nov 14, 2013 12:37 pm

Dan - I wouldn't trust a thing that is written on Wikipedia. A friend once edited the page on the battle of Hastings to read that King Harold was killed by a jelly baby.

Agree that things in books/tv shows etc can be interpretive but I'd trust academic books over Wikipedia. I've read conflicting things about Oswald's ability to shoot in fairness. As you said it adds to the debate & that's why it fascinates people.
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Re: Who killed JFK?

Post by Dan Fante on Thu Nov 14, 2013 1:01 pm

Tashski wrote:Dan - I wouldn't trust a thing that is written on Wikipedia. A friend once edited the page on the battle of Hastings to read that King Harold was killed by a jelly baby.

Agree that things in books/tv shows etc can be interpretive but I'd trust academic books over Wikipedia. I've read conflicting things about Oswald's ability to shoot in fairness. As you said it adds to the debate & that's why it fascinates people.
Hi Tash. I posted the Wikipedia page out of convenience. In any case, daft things like the bit of fun your mate had can appear there for a short time on very popular pages like the JFK or the Battle of Hastings one but they soon get removed (the Oswald page is locked anyway so can't be edited by the general public). And yes, I'm sure you have read conflicting things about Oswald's shooting ability because it's something that is frequently lied about. Also, his shooting test scores from the Marines are a matter of public record and appeared in the Warren Commission report etc. This doesn't in itself prove he did but the theory of him being the shooter is comfortably the most plausible (I think). People will argue the results could have been altered and so on but many people who were in the Marines were able to testify as to his abilities with a rifle. If you start getting into all that being part of a massive conspiracy stretching back to even before Kennedy was president it starts to get a bit bat-shit crazy in my view. Also, most of the conspiracy theories have more holes in them than Newcastle United's defence, to paraphrase Leonard 'Oz' Osbourne.


Last edited by Dan Fante on Thu Nov 14, 2013 1:37 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Who killed JFK?

Post by Dan Fante on Thu Nov 14, 2013 1:08 pm

oftenwrong wrote:

I've always thought co-conspirators might have been rather happy to see Jack Ruby execute the main gunman suspect.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKoswald.htm
There's definitely some unanswered questions about Ruby and his connections to the Mob.
also, there's a good page of a more skeptical slant on him on that site I posted a link to earlier:
http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/ruby.htm
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Re: Who killed JFK?

Post by Dan Fante on Mon Nov 18, 2013 3:15 pm

There's a good article here (for anyone who's interested) which details what a BBC correspondent witnessed in Dallas in the aftermath of the shooting:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-24954509
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Re: Who killed JFK?

Post by Ivan on Mon Jul 31, 2017 11:58 pm

Ivan wrote:Is it possible that a bodyguard in the car behind accidentally discharged his weapon (a new Colt AR-15 with .223 ammo) in the instant of the car breaking in reaction to the shots for which Oswald was blamed, and that this was covered up?
I’ve only recently got around to watching a documentary entitled ‘JFK’s Secret Killer: The Evidence’ which was broadcast in the UK on Channel 5 on 29 May. The conclusion which it comes to is the one above.

Three shots were fired. The first one, fired by Lee Harvey Oswald, missed Kennedy, but he was hit by fragments of the bullet after it ricocheted. The second shot, also fired by Oswald, entered Kennedy’s back and exited through his neck before striking Governor Connolly, who was in the front seat of the car. By now, secret service agent George Hickey was on his feet in the follow-up car, had removed the safety catch on his AR-15, and as he turned to exchange fire with Oswald, the gun discharged the fatal shot at Kennedy.

The third bullet was very different from the first two, and ten people testified that they had smelled gunpowder at street level. There then appears to have been a cover up of the fact that a secret service agent had killed the president in what was a tragic accident.

It seems probable that JFK's death was the result of a cock-up rather than a conspiracy.
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Re: Who killed JFK?

Post by oftenwrong on Tue Aug 01, 2017 12:28 pm

Discussion of this topic could fit reasonably well in one of the "Religious" debates so much a feature of Cutting Edge. Anyone is free to believe (or not) whatever they like.

The last chance of discovering anything resembling "truth" concerning John F Kennedy's assassination died in the moment that Lee Harvey Oswald was murdered by "Nightclub Owner Jack Ruby" inside Dallas Police headquarters.

Only in America.
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Re: Who killed JFK?

Post by oftenwrong on Thu Oct 26, 2017 7:15 pm

Today the Trump administration released "99%" of the government files concerning the assassination of President Kennedy - and there is only one question that EVERYONE is asking ....
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Re: Who killed JFK?

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