– Crossfire Essay, Research Paper
Crossfire Jim Marrs
1. The purpose of crossfire is to present all the facts of the JFK assassination into one book. Jim Marrs has collected many pieces of information, most of which were not presented to the investigating authorities, mainly because they didn t want to hear it, or the information had been altered or misinterpreted by the authorities. Marrs gets some of his information from personal interviews, but there is a wide variety of sources which include a wide range of books. The book is designed to provide an abundance of evidence in a readable manner, so that anyone can get an overview necessary to understand the conspiracy behind the assassination. There is one flaw though, Marrs only has one point of view the conspiracy theory. As an author I believe he should not take sides, he should just give the facts. The fact that Marrs strongly believes there was a conspiracy theory doesn t help the evidence to be entirely unbiased.
2. Yes, I do think that Marrs believes that Oswald was a Russian agent because of all the evidence that is presented that proves Oswald was related to the Soviets. But, basically, it would not be in the interest of the Soviets to try and attempt to assassinate Kennedy. Oswald, while in Russia, is that he lived well beyond the means of an ordinary citizen. This lifestyle proves that there must have been some sort of special relationship with officials. Marrs has two theories that suggest Oswald was an agent but not the assassin: Firstly, that Oswald, while in Japan, was recruited by the KGB to defect to Russia and return to the US to kill Kennedy. But, as Edward Jay Epstein (author of Legend ) reasons, I think the fact that Oswald traces so clearly back to the Russians makes it extremely unlikely that they would have recruited him as an assassin. I also reject this theory because I believe it is too obvious. And secondly, Oswald was recruited into US intelligence and was sent to Russia as a spy. There, the KGB attempted to turn him into their agent and send him back to the US, unaware that he would be blamed for Kennedy s death. I believe, in the overall view, that Oswald was caught in the middle of some intelligence work either by the US or the Russians. But I believe it is highly unlikely that the Russians would want to kill Kennedy. Even if Oswald did assassinate Kennedy, there would be more harm in killing him than not killing him, because the Soviets would have been risking a lot. WWIII may have been started, and an assassination would produce an even bigger anti-communism President.
3. Kennedy was blamed for the failure of the Bay of pigs because of the foolish orders he gave to the defense agencies concerned. The Cuban Brigade didn t want evacuation, they wanted ammunition, naval support and air cover for the invasion of the Bay of Pigs, which never came. Kennedy didn t want this. He wanted evacuation. He wanted the invasion to be scaled down as he had previously shown, when he reduced the first air attack from 16 bombers to 6 bombers. The result was a disaster, as Brigade men called for help from the beaches, where US military men could only stand silently by their weapons, and watch the Cuban Brigade being shredded. Kennedy accepted the responsibility of the defeat and took the burden of the blame. After this incident, it gave many people and organisations incentives and a reason to murder Kennedy. Fidel Castro was aware what Kennedy wanted to do with him. The CIA would be angry because of Kennedy s downscale of the whole invasion. This could have lead to a secret plot to assassinate the President. The US military would have felt betrayed and a sense of being left in the dark because they had not been allowed to help in the planning of the invasion. But most of all, probably the group which had the strongest reason to kill Kennedy were members of the Cuban Brigade and their families. They had been betrayed by Kennedy. Of the 1600 men of the Cuban Brigade, 114 were killed, 1189 were captured by Castro s forces, and 150 either never landed or made their way back to safety. All these organisations and people had good reason to assassinate Kennedy.
4. Attorney General Robert Kennedy and the President waged a war against organised crime like never before. This caused great fear and hatred amongst the ranks of crime leaders. Previously and what was still the case, the Mafia had connections with several US intelligence agencies. The Kennedy s may not have known this. To understand why the Kennedy s wanted to eliminate organised crime, you have to know the background to the Mafia. The Mafia had grown into a great crime organisation. They used a technique called the Black Hand where they sent a letter to a powerful businessman and requested money. Later, the Mafia then expanded into illegal gambling operations, prostitution and lotteries. They even were bankers for the poor. They were in allegiance with politicians. One gang member, named Arnold Rothstein was involved with city and state officials. Others took this tactic up and eventually the Mafia and the CIA joined together. From then on crime syndicates had gained a choke hold on America. That is why Kennedy wanted to eliminate the Mafia. Crime bosses issued threats to the Kennedys. So considering the Kennedy war against the mob as well as its vital interests in Cuba lost to Castro and Kennedy s failure to militarily support the Bay of Pigs invasion, mob leaders had a big motive to kill the President. The most powerful organisation which supported the Mafia was the CIA. Evidence of this is in the Bay of Pigs planning. It was planned that prior to the invasion Castro should be eliminated. Ideas on eliminating Castro included poison cigars and even a booby trapped diving suit. But then Sheffield Edward, director of the CIA s Office of Security suggested to use the Mafia, as it would be hard to track down any government involvement. The Mafia agreed, and it became a two way deal, as the CIA also supported the Mafia. Later in January 1963 the relationship broke up. The FBI didn t directly support the mob but they didn t try and shut them down. They just stood aside and let the CIA handle them.
5. The CIA had grown into a very dangerous organisation, which had stuck its nose into conspiracy too much that it in no way could it come out clean. It had, over a certain period of time, connections with the Mob and organised crime syndicated. They worked with these crime figures right up to Kennedy s assassination in Dallas. James O Connell who was chief of the Operational Support Division of the CIA and Robert Maheu, head of a private investigative firm, had regular meetings with Maheu s Mafia contacts, such as Rosselli, Giancana and Trafficante. The CIA which was a government organisation, liked to used the mob to do its dirty work. This is what made them so dangerous. The ability to remain undetected plus have support by powerful crime syndicates made the dangerous.
6. The FBI hindered the investigation of the Assassination of JFK. Evidence of this includes: Suppression of evidence, destruction of evidence, and intimidation of witnesses. Examples of the suppression of evidence include the loss of Beverly Oliver s film of the assassination which she claims was taken by the FBI, an assassination bullet disappearing from under the noses of a police guard by a FBI agent, the suppression of testimony, such as ED Hoffman who proved the lone assassin theory was false, and the failure of the FBI to follow important leads, even when the Warren Commission requested. Examples of the destruction of evidence include the destruction of the Oswald note by FBI Agent Hosty, the destruction of a licence plate number on a photograph of General Edwin Walker s home found intact with some of Oswald s possessions, and the immediate cleaning of the Presidential Limousine which destroyed vital ballistic evidence. Examples of the intimidation of witnesses include Richard Carr who saw two men run from the Texas Book Depository but later was told by FBI agents, If you didn t see Oswald in the Depository with a rifle, you didn t witness it. Ed Hoffman who was told by an FBI agent, You d better keep quiet, you could get killed. And Jean Hill who said she was hounded by Bureau agents until she stopped giving media interviews. To me these are criminal offences. When a local police agency is found to be corrupt, the FBI steps in. But when the FBI is found to be corrupt, who steps in then?
7. When JFK became president in 1961, the oil industry weren t threatened because they felt secure behind the CIA. The former CIA director Allen Dulles had, after all, been related to oil companies. But President Kennedy had other ideas. He wrote up The Kennedy Act which removed the distinction between repatriated profits and profits re-invested abroad. Now both were subject to tax. This act also prevented taxable income from being hidden away in other countries and foreign subsidiaries. But the Oil depreciation allowance remained, which permitted oil producers to treat up to 27.5% of their income as tax exempt. Attempts by Kennedy to eliminate or reduce the allowance were turned down year after year as many Congressmen were secretly happy receivers of bribes by oil companies. Speaking of his Tax Reform Act Kennedy stated, no one industry should be permitted to obtain an undue tax advantage over all others. Now oilmen did feel frightened by Kennedy. John W. Currington who was assistant to oil billionaire H.L Hunt for 12 years commented, Hunt was often heard by top aides and followers to say that America would be much better off without Kennedy. He also said that he believes that the wealthy oilman unwittingly influenced right-wing followers to participate in a conspiracy to kill Kennedy. He added that in later years Hunt admitted that he knew an assassination conspiracy existed. So where does Lyndon Baines Johnson (LBJ) fit into this? Back when Johnson was a Congressman, Brown & Root, an oil/construction company needed a government contract as one of its constructions violated federal law. Johnson pulled a few strings and helped this company. And this was the beginning of a strong partnership which continued right up until Johnson became President. The ironic thing was that Johnson as Vice President was, supposedly, Kennedy s no. 1 supporter, and the president of Brown & Root was one who loathed Kennedy
8. The military had many reasons to dislike Kennedy and his way of thinking. When Kennedy was running for president, he promised increases in military spending. But then once he was elected, and with other sources of information, he made a 180 degrees turn in his attitudes towards the military. He restrained the manufacture and sale of armaments the largest money-making endeavor in the U.S. And, in the Bay of Pigs invasion, he refused the use of military power to salvage the invasion. He also didn t allow the military to help in the planning of the invasion. Then, when the U.S learned that the Soviets were preparing missile bases in Cuba, Kennedy decided to not use force like the military had suggested fervently, but to negotiate. He struck a deal with Soviet Premier Khrushcev and the Soviets backed down. Although the plans worked, this was not to the military s liking. And on August 5, 1963, after lengthy negotiations, The US, Great Britain and the Soviet Union signed a nuclear test ban treaty a treaty which the military urged Kennedy not to sign. But out of all his ideas and actions to reduce the risk of war and limit the military s power, Kennedy s most influential decisions came when he began to re-evaluate the U.S policy in South-East Asia, particularly in Vietnam. Here he decided to pull troops out of Vietnam, and the military personnel got very angry with this decision. The military were fighting communism. Many people believe this decision may have led to his death because so many people were against it. It is for all these reasons that suggest the military had a motive to kill the President, and therefore seriously be involved in the assassination. The military wold have preferred LBJ as president because he supported the military more and his ideals matches the military s ideals more closely than Kennedy. In fact, after Kennedy s assassination, when Johnson became President, he re-evaluated Kennedy s re-evaluation and sent the troops back to Vietnam to fight. There is a great cause for concern that Johnson was part of the assassination. If he was, then surly he would have teamed up with the military. But this is all hypothetical. If Johnson was in power during the missile crisis he would have followed the military s advice, because, like many other Presidents before Kennedy, the military were and would have been very powerful. But it was Kennedy who was a change agent, who stopped the monopolisation of power by the military. Judging from what the public can see, Johnson doesn t look like someone who would change traditions unlike Kennedy, who also took a stand against the Mafia and the mob.