LBJ: A Murderer Uncovered
Sitting in my bedroom late one Saturday night, a cable channel is airing another assassination show on President Kennedy. It is the 50th anniversary of the assassination and this one, like many other documentaries before and after it, claims that Lee Harvey Oswald was the lone gunman and that he killed President John F. Kennedy with a surplus rifle that he bought. As a child I can remember my mom and dad talking about the assassination and who they thought killed the president. At the time, I never thought about it much but as I grew older I always wondered why it was just a given thing in our household, that there was a conspiracy. Never once was it said that Oswald killed Kennedy. My parents always believed there had been a conspiracy and a cover up of that same conspiracy. So it is no wonder, that I too would think that Oswald was not the lone gunman. My mother was always the one to believe that the Mafia was the one who had the President assassinated. On the other hand, my father had his money on Lyndon Baines Johnson or LBJ. Power and greed could make a good man go bad he always said and Johnson was far from being a good man. Known in Texas for his dirty politics it wasn’t hard to believe LBJ’s hands were not clean. Over the years, their theories changed somewhat and actually combined into one. Oswald was always a patsy, who was not smart enough to have planned and executed the assassination plot. Jack Ruby was a low man in the Mafia that was expendable and LBJ and his connections had President Kennedy assassinated. Fifty years ago an injustice was done to the American public few could talk about and even fewer could imagine. Our president was killed and replaced by one and the same man, LYNDON BAINES JOHNSON.
Throughout history the “right man theory” has always been in play in assassination of world leaders. (Zirbel 88) LBJ should have been the first person the Warren Commission looked at but that would have been extremely difficult for them since LBJ controlled the commission. So the finger had to be pointed in a different direction. I t was no secret that the Kennedys and Johnson never really liked each other and it was believed that LBJ planned the murder from day one. (Zirbel 143) Johnson’s mistress, Madeleine Duncan Brown was quoted in her book saying, “that in the immediate aftermath of the convention Hunt and Johnson mapped out a strategy to kill Kennedy.” (Brown 68) Johnson wanted to be President and he settled for vice-presidency knowing he was just one man away from being that. “When they met in California Joe Kennedy, John Kennedy's father, and H.L. Hunt met three days prior to the election - they finally cut a deal according to John Currington (an aide to H.L. Hunt) and H.L. finally agreed that Lyndon would go as the vice president....this came from the horse's mouth way back in 1960 - when H.L. came back to Dallas I was walking....with him....and he made the remark, 'we may have lost a battle but we're going to win a war,' and then the day of the assassination he said 'well, we won the war'.” (Brown 68) What other meaning could this have had?
Another issue that played a role in the assassination plot was who was going to be Kennedy’s running mate in the ’64 election. Evelyn Lincoln, who was JFK’s secretary, wrote “that the day President Kennedy left for Dallas, they discussed the Bobby Baker scandal, LBJ‘s deep involvement in it, and the effects of the scandal on the campaign. Kennedy told her: ‘I will need a running mate in '64, a man who believes as I do.’” (Livingstone 123) I t was clear Kennedy was going to choose a new running mate in ’64. She stated that he looked ahead and...
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