Thursday, November 20, 2008

November 22, 1963, to be seen from May 19, 2044

In the modern era, the death of one man stands apart from all others in American history. You don’t need to be a conspiracy fan to wonder what and who really was behind the death of John F. Kennedy. Forty-five years out, the story of the loner Oswald, then murdered by the nightclub owner Ruby, just doesn't set. And that’s not including the insanity of the single bullet that “traversed 15 layers of clothing, 7 layers of skin, and approximately 15 inches of tissue, struck a necktie knot, removed 4 inches of rib, and shattered a radius bone.” (wiki)

I saw a British documentary on the life of Jacqueline Kennedy that put a timeline to events in 1963 that I had not known before.

Jackie Kennedy gave birth to Patrick Kennedy on August 7, 1963, six weeks prematurely. In a crushing fate, he died two days later.

In October, Jackie’s sister Lee Radziwill convinced her to come out on Aristotle Onassis’s yacht to help her recuperate from the tragedy. The married Lee was having an affair with Onasiss, and he had an interest in Jackie. Even in the swinging sixties, it was a bold move for the married first lady to go to the yacht of the married Ari, unescorted. Payback for Jack’s epic philandering? Who knows.

A month later, JFK is murdered in Dallas.

This documentary did a good job of speaking to the emotional agony that Jackie suffered in her marriage to Jack. Such an intelligent, vibrant, talented woman who had the misfortune to once fall in love with a selfish man of enormous power. She had the misfortune to be attracted to the glamor of JFK, and she paid for it for the rest of his life as only a woman can pay.

In 2003 Robert Dallek published An Unfinished Life: John F. Kennedy, 1917-1963. He approached the Kennedys to allow him to read the 500-page transcript that Jackie Kennedy recorded before her death in 1994. From USA Today, “Caroline Kennedy politely refused Dallek's request to read it, saying her mother asked that it remain closed until 50 years after her death.”

If it is actually released May, 19, 2044, I think it will shed some new light on what happened in Dallas. I for one can’t wait to find out.

(photo from The Kennedy Assassination website. Website by John McAdams © 1995-2008)


Tim Footman said...

I understand why people might not want information disclosed until after their deaths; but why not until a specific period after? Will Jackie be somehow *more* dead in 2044?

I do wonder what sort of bombshell Laura Bush is sitting on...

M.A.Peel said...

I read somewhere else that there is also a clause that it's 50 years IF her children are dead. I find this fascinating. She felt a responsibility to tell history, but she still wants to protect her children from the truth about their father. What is in this document that they don't already know?

Of course Jackie could not have dreamed that John Jr. would die at 38. On the other hand, if Carolyn lives to past 87, the documents won't release until she dies.

Anonymous said...

M.A., is the documentary available on video or cable? And did I ever tell you I had a Jackie fixation? AP in Ithaca

M.A.Peel said...

Hi AP, no, you never told me about your Jackie focus. Unfortunately, I don't know what the name of the documentary was. I saw it on PBS. I think it was a part of a series called "Greatest Love Stories of the 20th Century," but I googled that and couldn't find it.

4rx said...
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