JFK: WAS HIS ASSASSINATION INEVITABLE?
A popular misconception is that President John F. Kennedy's assassination was an isolated event perpetrated by one man. This could not be farther from the truth. Instead, it was the result of a complex combination of domestic and foreign events. When President Kennedy was in office, he had to deal with many issues, ranging from business and finance to crime-fighting and war issues. Perhaps it is not as important to decide who it was that killed him, but why. President Kennedy's decisions and courses of action were not popular with everybody, and thus it is not surprising that his assassination was inevitable.
The people who might have wanted John F. Kennedy dead can be classified into the following groups: Russians, Cubans, Mobsters (Organized Crime/Mafia), Special Agents (CIA), G-men (J. Edgar Hoover's FBI), Rednecks and Oilmen (Right-wing Extremists), and the MIC (Military Industrial Complex). Each group had its own motives for killing John F. Kennedy. Many of these groups that wanted JFK dead are very closely intertwined, so in order to understand each group, they will each be analyzed seperately.1
In order to better understand the relationship between JFK, the Cubans and Russians, several important events must be mentioned and discussed. Two of the most important foreign affairs in Kennedy's presidency were the Bay of Pigs and the Cuban Missile Crisis.
During Eisenhower's administration, Cuba was torn apart by revolution. The Cuban dictator, Batista, was an extremely corrupt man. While he was enjoying a luxurious life, the people of Cuba were in poverty. Thus it was not surprising when a rebellion, led by a man named Fidel Castro, took place. Batista, knowing that the majority of Cuba wanted him out, chose to flea rather than be caught and face execution. Once Batista was out of the way, Cuba was Castro's for the taking.2
One of the first actions Castro took while in charge of Cuba was to close down all casinos. The people running them were either imprisoned or deported. Exploitation of Cuban workers by American was unacceptable to Castro, and he took immediate action against this. He believed American capitalists were taking advantage of the Cubans. Angered by this aggressive attitude toward American "interests", the United States government established a trade embargo, hoping the Cuban people would overthrow Castro and reinstate a more "American friendly" leader.3
With a starving population on one side, and a broken economy on the other, Castro turned to Russia for help. Since Russia did not own any land or power in the US/Cuban region, Castro offered the Russians a chance to extend their sphere of influence. An opportunity which was not refused. Of course, the American government did not accept this situation readily. A plan to train and arm Cuban exiles who would return to Cuba to overthrow Castro was contrived. This secret operation was viewed as far less dangerous than a direct invasion by American troops.4
As the election of 1960 approached, the CIA had already made plans to overthrow Castro with the Cuban exiles. However, to the surprise of just about everyone, a young John F. Kennedy defeated favorite Richard Nixon by the slimmest of margins.5
Nonetheless, the invasion had to go on. The plan was to bomb Cuba's airfields to prevent the Cuban military from killing the invading exiles. However, two things went wrong in the invasion. First, the CIA underestimated the Cuban army, and second, the
airstrips were not all taken out, allowing the Cuban airforce to retaliate. Upon hearing news of this, the CIA told Kennedy that in order to succeed the US must provide air coverage for the exiles. Kennedy refused however, believing it would be foolish to provoke a crisis with the Soviets just in order to aid the exiles. Due to this, the exiles were given no chance and were quickly demolished, and the invasion had failed.6
Now that Castro knew the United States' intentions, he knew he was in immediate danger. Once again, he turned to Russia for aid. Castro realized the only way to assert his safety was to defend himself, and what he did was a very strategic move. He asked Russia to send nuclear missiles to Cuba, saying to the US that any more attempted invasions