US Would Not Have Been Embroiled in Vietnam War Had JFK Remained - Professor

© AP PhotoA napalm strike erupts in a fireball near U.S. troops on patrol in South Vietnam, 1966 during the Vietnam War
A napalm strike erupts in a fireball near U.S. troops on patrol in South Vietnam, 1966 during the Vietnam War - Sputnik International
As many 'black spots' in John Kennedy assassination plot remain unsolved 55 years later after the tragic events in Dallas that shattered the whole American society, JFK's legacy continues to dominate the current headlines. What if there was no murder of the 35th US President? How the world could have looked like now and then?

Sputnik spoke with Calvin Schermerhorn, professor of history at Arizona State University, for more insight on the issue.

Sputnik: In your view, why are there still so many gray spots in the murder of JFK?

Calvin Schermerhorn: Good question.

There are many gray spots because Lee Harvey Oswald was never tried, never confessed, and the spectacular nature of the Kennedy assassination has lead to alternative theories of who assassinated him and why.

President Kennedy in Dallas, moments before the assassination. - Sputnik International
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Sputnik: A lot of documents have been declassified on the story, do you think there is still much more behind the scenes that the government does not want to share? If yes than why?

Calvin Schermerhorn: No, I do not think there is much more behind the scenes.

The Kennedy assassination has attracted conspiracy theories in part because it fits this classic conspiracy scenario: a small number of people in power exercise an in ordinate amount of control over events, which is actually a hopeful view of how things work because it assumes that people and especially leaders actually do shape and control events, rather than the less optimistic view that events are largely out of the control of discrete historical actors.

Sputnik: How would you say this tragic murder impacted the history of the USA?

Surrounded by detectives, Lee Harvey Oswald talks to the press as he is led down a corridor of the Dallas police station for another round of questioning in connection with the assassination of US President John F. Kennedy, November 23, 1963. - Sputnik International
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Calvin Schermerhorn: Practically speaking, the great strides forward in African-American civil rights might not of happened so quickly in the 1960s had Kennedy remained president.

The personal tragedy of the young president with so much promise being shot down suddenly makes for great drama, but his successor Lyndon Johnson was the first president to put civil rights high on the national agenda.

There is a possibility that the United States would not have been embroiled in the Vietnam war, but that is uncertain.

Sputnik: There are many conspiracies on the matter, what do you see as the most probable story behind the murder?

Calvin Schermerhorn: Unfortunately for conspiracy theorists, the most probable scenario is the one that we all know the best: Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone in assassinating president Kennedy.

Views and opinions expressed in this article are those of Calvin Schermerhorn and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

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