The 50th anniversary of the assassination of John F Kennedy, the 35th president of the United States of America, is producing a fresh avalanche of books to add to the mountain that already exists on the subject.
Rarely has a world leader fascinated so much. Kennedy is the closest America has to a political personality cult, and the family dynasty continues into the present. 40 different groups, 80 killers and 200 co-conspirators have been fingered for the murder, but the mystery over JFK’s death persists, and everyone has a take on the subject.
“I have been to the sixth floor of the Book Depository in Dallas. I have looked down the way he looked. I shoot recreationally, it could have been done. It was a pretty easy shot, actually, for somebody with a rifle,” said one man.
“Who in their right mind would conspire with Oswald?” was another man’s opinion.
Yet for all the supposed plots it is just as reasonable, if not more so, to believe none of them are true, so the conspiracy theories can rumble on unhindered by time, fuelling an entire publishing industry. Washington’s Newseum is marking the anniversary with a big exhibition.
“I was in fifth grade, (10 years old), when the president was assassinated, I remember that day clearly. I actually believe there was a conspiracy. Oswald wasn’t the only individual involved,” said one man outside.
“In a way, the American people never were given a definitive answer, so people like to spin what they can spin,” said one young woman.
What rankles many Americans is that they know more about Kennedy, his policies, times, and personal life, than virtually any other US president, yet about his death they feel they know nothing.
“Fifty years later, the Kennedy assassination is still shrouded in mystery – that’s what Americans want to believe. Two thirds of them think that Oswald did not act alone. And it doesn’t matter that no evidence was ever found to support this,” says euronews’ Stefan Grobe in Washington.