by Gus Russo ‧ RELEASE DATE: Nov. 22, 1998
Probably the last book on the Kennedy assassination you will need to read. Veteran investigative reporter Russo has reported for both ABC and PBS documentaries on the subject. Here he begins with an autobiographical introduction to convince readers he is not a conspiracy theory nut, His description of the twists and tums in his beliefs about the Kennedy assassination suggest an open-mindedness that is reason to take this author seriously, as well as a serious obsession with the subject matter. Russo argues that the critical question is not who killed Kennedy but why, an inquiry that takes us far beyond Oswald as a lone gunman. In a nutshell, the Bay of Pigs disaster left the Kennedy brothers committed to removing Castro, even to the extent of endorsing bizarre James Bond-style assassination schemes. Bobby was personally involved in this ""Cuba Project,"" an effort pursued through a Cuban-American community so porous that all such activities were known by Castro in advance, and none of them was even close to successful. Oswald was also familiar with these efforts through his contact with the Cuban community, and he acted because he believed Kennedy was out to kill his hero, Castro. Whether Oswald had support from the Cubans remains a mystery, but for Russo the bottom line is that ""JFK's actions towards Castro were so outlandish, in fact, that had it not been Oswald, someone else was bound to take a shot at him."" The coverup that followed was not due to governmental complicity in the assassination, but was rather to protect Kennedy's reputation. ""For three decades, Kennedy loyalists would fight tooth and nail to perpetuate the 'lone nut' hypothesis and to keep the lid on the Kennedys' attempts to murder Fidel Castro."" Russo's extremely detailed account reveals much more that was going on, but the story in the end is that the Kennedy brothers were inexperienced and incautious, and they paid the price for a reckless foreign policy. Gripping and convincing.
Pub Date: Nov. 22, 1998
Page Count: 640
Publisher: "Bancroft (P.O. Box 65360, Baltimore, MD 21209)"
Review Posted Online: N/A
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 1998
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