Book Review





Book Review

In his work “Crossfire: The Plot that Killed Kennedy”, Jim Marrs begins by setting the stage and he enables the reader to understand how JFK ascended to power. This is important because he does not present it as a life story. Instead, the reader understands the influences of wealth and the political decisions made. Marrs does not shy away from highlighting, and even sometimes explaining, some of the conspiracies and mysteries that are often passed around concerning the murder. For instance, he notes some of the people that would have had an interest in Kennedy’s death. He details Oswald’s history and he writes about the Cubans and Russians. He does not leave out national institutions as well. His description concerning the possible involvement of the CIA, the FBI, and the military is especially noteworthy considering that not many people would want to venture into the subject.

The first section of the book is titled the Kill Zone. Marrs gives some details concerning Kennedy’s life before and after politics. He describes the deadly plaza, by focusing on different aspects including the motorcade, the crowd, events at the Texas school book depository the triple underpass and the grassy knoll. All the places and the people included contribute to understanding more about the president, his associates, and the events surround ding that day. The second part of the book is aptly titled Means, Motives, and Opportunities. In this section, it is clear that several people were interested in the president’s assassinations. Kennedy’s decision to support the civil rights and his failure to conform to popular political moves regarding issues such as the economy and politics rubbed many people the wrong way. In this section, Marrs takes the time to give a detailed description of Oswald, the man who was convicted of killing the president. He writes about the Russians and the connections they had with Oswald. The next section describes the Cubans and the Bay of Pigs and he still ties it with Oswald.

Marrs is interested in remaining true to the title of his book yet this means that he has to expose the truths that many people have tried to hide. For instance, one would hesitate to focus on the redskins, the KKK, and the mobsters. The author notes that any of these groups would have wanted the president dead. The book highlights the fact that being a leader is not as easy as one would want to believe. Everyone wants the president to favor them and consider their side. However, the president has to act according to the best interests in the country. In many cases, this rubs people the wrong way. Some of those who are offended are those who are closest to the president personally and politically. The inclusion of the different people makes the reader question the viability and reliability of the final judgment made in ruling that Oswald acted alone that day. The reader is left asking how a lone person could manage to kill the president so easily.

Marrs mentions many people in the two sections of the book. He also uses different sources for his information and evidence, as revealed at the last sections of the book. Marrs is interested in telling the story as told by the different players. He never mentions any of the parties without due cause. The decision to include a summary at the end of each chapter enhances understanding and makes it easier to read the book. Moreover, the chapters dividing the main parts are small. The kind of writing used is not only interesting but it engages the reader by creating suspicion.

Work Cited:

Marrs, Jim. Crossfire: The Plot that Killed Kennedy. New York: Carroll & Graf Publishers Inc, 1993. Print

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