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Who Killed JFK?

October 27, 2017

Yesterday, files collected during the investigation of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy were released. Since I was in college when the assassination took place, I remember vividly the events of that day.  Kennedy’s murder was for post-World War II generation Americans more than an assassination of an American President. It was, as a result of the United States having become a fully developed nation-state, a regicide.

Though we inherited a tri-partite form of national government with checks and balances, the worst fears of the Founding Fathers had been realized. The Chief Executive had become a monarch.  From FDR onward, American politics has finalized the construction of a modern administrative state.

That state apparatus was used by President George W. Bush as an instrument for democratic revolution and, in my essay published in the  Summer 2004 issue of Modern Age, I trace that ideology to development  to “an amalgam of Wilsonian messianism, a belief in progress, and the expectation that international agreements will shape a New World Order of eternal peace.”

As we anticipate reading long hidden reports on the Kennedy assassination, the main question in all our minds is whether Oswald was a loose cannon, working for himself, or was he the instrument of a foreign power?

Jim Piereson’s Camelot and the Cultural Revolution published by Encounter Books in 2004 deals with that question quite well and persuasively raises questions about Oswald’s ties to Castro who, at that time, was the target of a CIA assassination plot.

My own view is that Castro was involved in an assassination plot, initiated by Nikita Sergeyevich Khrushchev, First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.  Khrushchev was forced to back down from placing nuclear missiles in Cuba and felt personally humiliated. That, frankly, is a stronger thesis than the argument that the Mafia and CIA did it, or that the “National Security Establishment”–with LBJ’s connivance–did it.  Assassination was a tactic affirmed by Lenin and explains why Pope John Paul II was attacked by an agent of the Soviet Union.

If Castro was the instigator, however, why did he use a sole assassin and marginal personality like Oswald? It seems too convoluted to believe that Oswald was the only shooter and no other persons were involved.  Jim Piereson disposes of that argument.  Oswald pulled the trigger.

But, Kennedy’s botched autopsy did reveal an exit wound at the back of the President’s head suggesting a second assassin was positioned at the front of the President’s motorcade. There were reports that the assassinated President’s limousine was quickly shipped back to the United States and a broken front window, evidence of a shot from the front by a second shooter, was conveniently destroyed. President Johnson did not want to retaliate against the Soviet Union, and blocked release of evidence leading to that conclusion.

And, then, there is Jack Ruby.  A night club owner with ties to the Mafia was overwrought with grief and resolved to kill Oswald? At the time, we believed that Ruby killed Oswald to keep him from talking. We’ll never know for sure, but Jim Piereson’s book answers many of the questions millions of Americans have had for many years.

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