The Truth About JFK (MP3 Download)
November 22, 1963 remains one of the darkest days in American history; comparably traumatic, for those who lived through it, to the terrorist slaughter of September 11, 2001. The sheer senseless of John F. Kennedy's assassination made his sudden death especially horrifying and the unanswered questions swirling around the tragedy have denied the nation the sense of closure and comprehension that this disaster demands.
Assuming that Lee Harvey Oswald murdered the president (as all responsible historians do) why did he do it? Was Oswald's own murder by Jack Ruby a terrible coincidence or an indication of a wider conspiracy? Why do a majority of Americans to this day remain convinced that Oswald didn't act alone? And, most intriguingly, how might a second term have altered the nation's history if JFK had escaped death and won re-election in 1964?
In this special history program, Michael Medved speaks with authors of some of the most important new books on the assassination and the Kennedy presidency, including Jeff Greenfield, Robert Dallek, Peter Savodnik and others. He also provides a brisk, comprehensive summary of the indisputable facts of JFK's biography and the tragic hours in Dallas that claimed his life at age 46.
Throughout this comprehensive program (with four hours prepared for broadcast, instead of the usual three), Michael stresses five aspects of Kennedy's life (and death) that most Americans misunderstand. 1) His status as an underdog outsider "fighting against the establishment" 2) His youthful vigor, robust fitness and athleticism 3) His visionary "idealism" 4) His character and good judgment and 5) His death as a martyr to a noble cause.
The "truth about JFK" turns out to be more complex and fascinating than air-brushed nostalgia and misleading arguments regular promoted by mainstream media.
There are four unique sections and the first one features:
-Frank Sinatra singing Kennedy's campaign song "High Hopes"
-Kennedy's closing statement at first debate with Nixon
-movie trailer for "PT109" which featured Kennedy's war story
-A clip from Kennedy's "New Frontier" speech
The second section includes: Jeff Greenfield, author of If Kennedy Lived and Camelot's Court: Inside the Kennedy White House by Robert Dallek.
The third section is a conversation with A Cruel and Shocking Act: The Secret History of the Kennedy Assassination by Philip Shenon and The Interloper: Lee Harvey Oswald Inside the Soviet Union by Peter Savodnik
And the final section: The Kennedy Half-Century: The Presidency, Assassination, and Lasting Legacy of John F. Kennedy by Larry J. Sabato and End of Days: The Assassination of John F. Kennedy by James L. Swanson
Additional Resource: The Dark Side of Camelot by Seymour M. Hersh
Total Run Time: 2hrs, 25min
Available on CD and audio download
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A bit disappointing
Most of your history programs have been well researched and balanced and I have enjoyed almost all of them (Viet Nam was a notable and offensive exception). This one seemed to be a series of radio shows cobbled together for the fiftieth anniversary of the Kennedy assassination. I bought it to see if you would fall into what I would call the Brit Hume trap of citing his lack of solid achievement while forgetting that he inherited a country in perilous times, was elected by a tiny majority, and lived for less than a thousand days after his election. You avoided that for the most part but you fell into another one. On the one hand you speculate that the president was so ill that he may not have lived to finish his second term and on the other hand you ascribe to him a sex life that would make Hugh Hefner blush. Anyone with back trouble even approaching the level of Kennedy's knows that the most sensational accounts of his private behavior are probably not even physically possible. No matter. He was a visionary (Civil Rights, Space, Peace Corps, etc) who may have saved us all during the Cuban Missile Crisis and I wish I would have heard a bit more of that. But we are on different sides of the political spectrum. I just wish I could have heard more of what Michael Medved thought and less of "experts" quoting Kenny O'Donnell, the least reliable source for anything.