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This article uses both public and private documents to measure the operational code of John F. Kennedy in the summer of 1962. Previous operational code research (and indeed, much of content analysis more generally) has relied exclusively on the analysis of public speeches and is thus open to charges that the speeches represent attempts at deception, persuasion, or impression management.
Hersh's 1997 book about John F. Kennedy, The Dark Side of Camelot, made a number of controversial assertions about the former president.
In October 1962, the world held its breath. On the edge of the Caribbean Sea, just a few miles from the Florida coast, the two great superpowers were at a stand-off. Destruction seemed inevitable. After a tense few months of posturing and careful negotiation, the Cuban Missile Crisis was averted; the US and USSR went their separate ways. Fifty years later, this program reveals the shocking drama that took place underwater on board Soviet submarine B-59, which brought us so much closer to World War Three than anybody realised.
In 2003 Dallek published the New York Times Bestseller An Unfinished Life: John F. Kennedy, 1917-1963, the first major biography of John F. Kennedy in 40 years, based on archival resources and unprecedented access to his medical records, revealing his secret struggle with major health problems, as well as his love affairs, the backstage role of his father, his appointment of his brother Robert F. Kennedy to the office of United States Attorney-General, and speculations about what he would have done about the Vietnam War if he had lived.
John F. Kennedy's career was premised on an "ideology of masculinity"; he used this ideology to justify his claim to presidential power. Employing culturally resonant images derived from America's republican heritage, Kennedy constructed an aristocratic persona embodying the virtues of the stoic warrior intellectual.
According to Robert P. Watson, a historian who has researched the sexual indiscretions of U.S. Presidents, at least seven of them—ranging from Thomas Jefferson to Bill Clinton—have had affairs both before and during their terms of office. But John F. Kennedy, whose dalliances with scores of women, including movie goddess Marilyn Monroe, have become the stuff of legend.
The assassination of John F Kennedy means that we all get to decide how his story should have ended, and thus plot an alternative trajectory for the country he so fleetingly led. The events in Dallas exactly 50 years ago made JFK as much a myth as a man, one of history's most endlessly malleable figures.