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Questions Linger 50 Years After JFK's Assassination


Friday November 22, 2013 marks the 50th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy's assassination, and his death still fascinates many Americans.

JFK was visiting Dallas with his wife Jacqueline on Nov. 22, 1963. They were traveling by motorcade with the governor of Texas, and his wife, when Kennedy was fatally shot by a sniper. After an investigation by The Warren Commission, it was concluded that Kennedy was assassinated by Lee Harvey Oswald, and that Oswald acted alone.

Although the conclusion was initially supported by a majority of the American public, since 1966 when Gallup first polled Americans on JFK's death, doubt has been growing. Larry Sabato, director of U.Va.'s Center for Politics, and author of "The Kennedy Half-Century" says people find it hard to believe that one man had the capability to kill the president.

"It disrupts our sense of the order of the universe. We want to believe if the president is going to be killed, it's got to be a big conspiracy. The mafia, Castro, the anti-Castro cubans, the CIA, Lyndon Johnson," Sabato said.

According to a recent CBS news poll 76 percent of Americans believe that Lee Harvey Oswald did not act alone. Sabato says that after five years of research he believes that Oswald was not the sole perpetrator. Sabato added that there is not enough evidence to claim if he was encouraged by someone else, or if there was anyone on the "grassy knoll."

"I'm still not convinced he acted alone," said Sabato. "I am convinced he was on the sixth floor of the School Book Depository and he shot President Kennedy and he shot Governor Connally. The evidence is overwhelming."

The CBS news poll also reports 74 percent of Americans think there was an official cover-up to keep the public from learning the truth about the assassination. The poll also found that most Americans, including conspiracy theorists, and those who believe The Warren Commission's findings, think the truth about JFK's death will never be fully known.


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