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Five Lingering Unsolved Mysteries From the JFK Assassination

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It has now been 49 years since President John F. Kennedy was assassinated. Since then, thousands of books have been written about what is probably the single biggest unsolved mystery of the 20th century. After nearly half a century, it's becoming increasingly clear that we may never fully understand what happened that day.

I myself have long harbored doubts about the government's own seriously flawed version of what happened in Dealey Plaza. The 1964 Warren Commission Report has rightfully been criticized over the years for the inaccuracies and flawed information it contained.

The vast majority of Kennedy assassination books over the decades have concluded that there was a conspiracy to kill JFK. However, many conspiracy theories themselves have been debunked over the years. In fact, sloppy work by conspiracy writers has, in my view, damaged the quest for truth in the case.

Authors like Gerald Posner, who have worked to debunk conspiracies, have in turn been harshly criticized by the pro-conspiracy community. Posner's book, Case Closed: Lee Harvey Oswald and the Assassination of JFK was once praised as a solid rebuttal to the conspiracy writers. But in recent years, Posner has increasingly come under fire and his reputation has taken a beating (even among those who believe Oswald acted alone).

One problem that plagues works like Posner's book (as well as pro-conspiracy works like Oliver Stone's JFK film) is that the case is simply too vast and complex to be adequately addressed in a single work.

After reading numerous JFK assassination books over the years, both pro and con, I still keep an open mind about the case. I'm not 100 percent convinced, either way, although I do lean toward the theory that Oswald did not act alone.

In any case, there are still unresolved mysteries surrounding the JFK Assassination that haven't been adequately explained to this day. Here are five of them.

1. What happened to Mary Moorman's missing fifth photo in Dealey Plaza? Moorman is known for her famous Polaroid photo that captures the JFK assassination at nearly the precise instant the head shot occurred. What is less well-known, though, is that Moorman took other photos that day. One photo she took moments before the assassination reportedly depicted the sixth-floor window of the Texas School Book Depository. The photo was reportedly turned over to Secret Service agents shortly after the assassination and vanished from sight. It has never been published and it remains missing to this day.

2. Why was Oswald's handwritten note to FBI agent James Hosty destroyed? Oswald wrote a note to Hosty a week or two before the assassination. Within hours of Oswald's death on Nov. 24, 1963, the note was torn up and flushed down the toilet by Hosty. Hosty had claimed his superior, Gordon Shanklin, had ordered him to destroy the note. However, Shanklin denied this. The lingering mystery, though, is exactly what the contents of Oswald's note were and why the note was destroyed in the first place.

3. Whatever happened to the mysterious "Babushka Lady," who was seen in the Zapruder film of the assassination? Zapruder's film depicts a woman wearing a head scarf who in turn is filming the JFK motorcade at the moment of the assassination. Given that the Babushka Lady is very close to the motorcade, her film would offer invaluable evidence if it could be located today. The problem is, shortly after the assassination, the Babushka Lady and her film vanished from history. In 1970, a woman named Beverly Oliver came forward and claimed she was the Babushka Lady and that her film was confiscated by the FBI. But her story has never been confirmed.

4. What happened in the mysterious death of Oswald's friend, George de Mohrenschildt? A noted member of the Russian emigre community in Dallas, De Mohrenschildt became an unlikely friend of Oswald in 1962. He testified at length before the Warren Commission in 1964. In later years, he became increasingly depressed and distraught and believed the CIA was persecuting him. On March 29, 1977, de Mohrenschildt was contacted by an investigator with the House Select Committee on Assassinations, asking for an interview. That same day, de Mohrenschildt was found dead from a gunshot wound. De Mohrenschildt's death has been called a suicide, but its timing does seem mysterious.

5. Did Joseph Milteer have foreknowledge of the assassination? 13 days before the assassination, right-wing extremist Milteer gave tape-recorded comments to a Miami police informant that eerily predicted key details of the JFK assassination. Milteer claimed that a conspiracy to kill Kennedy was in the works and described a scenario in which the president would be shot "from an office building with a high-powered rifle." Milteer also predicted that, in the aftermath of the assassination, the police would arrest a patsy "to throw the public off." Amazingly, the Warren Commission gave very little attention to Milteer's interview. Milteer remains a shadowy and mysterious figure to this day. His 1963 tape-recorded remarks can be heard here .

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The creator of the progressive site,, Marc McDonald is an award-winning journalist who worked for 15 years for several Texas newspapers, including the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, before he quit his day job and set up shop (more...)

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Another mystery that has long baffled me is whatev... by Marc McDonald on Thursday, Nov 22, 2012 at 2:51:31 AM
click hereclick hereclick here=secondary_news_left... by pc93 on Thursday, Nov 22, 2012 at 7:20:53 AM
I only had time to skim them, but just wanted to s... by Daniel Geery on Friday, Nov 23, 2012 at 11:00:41 AM
i was compelled to share. thanks.... by pc93 on Friday, Nov 23, 2012 at 10:26:21 PM
What a sick country we live in where only atrociti... by 911TRUTH on Thursday, Nov 22, 2012 at 11:48:12 AM
Yes, it seems significant doesn't it that the publ... by rob Chapman on Thursday, Nov 22, 2012 at 12:15:59 PM
I don't really think of myself as a "conspiracy bu... by Marc McDonald on Thursday, Nov 22, 2012 at 11:57:53 PM
that the same group(s) committed all of these atro... by 911TRUTH on Friday, Nov 23, 2012 at 11:58:34 AM
It will seem a strange citation, but many decades ... by rob Chapman on Thursday, Nov 22, 2012 at 12:11:37 PM
The most disturbing video i have seen of the JFK a... by Ray O. Sunshine on Thursday, Nov 22, 2012 at 6:13:52 PM
to the video mentioned?... by Daniel Geery on Friday, Nov 23, 2012 at 11:04:13 AM
I'm sure you could find it if it's still up. The r... by Ray O. Sunshine on Saturday, Nov 24, 2012 at 8:15:03 AM
The Strength of the Wolf: The Secret His... by stevebonzai on Thursday, Nov 22, 2012 at 1:38:01 PM
Seems like these things are too easy to do and cov... by Ray O. Sunshine on Thursday, Nov 22, 2012 at 6:07:15 PM
One of the questions I want answered is who put th... by Bill Johnson on Friday, Nov 23, 2012 at 9:09:04 AM
one of the secret service agents in d.c. area that... by pc93 on Friday, Nov 23, 2012 at 10:35:05 PM
Given the overwhelming evidence that it was a cons... by Jim Arnold on Friday, Nov 23, 2012 at 9:45:00 AM
re: "begs the question: Mr. McDonald, why did you ... by Marc McDonald on Saturday, Nov 24, 2012 at 12:51:49 AM
Mary Moorman's missing fifth photo was taken away ... by Jim Arnold on Saturday, Nov 24, 2012 at 2:14:23 AM