Little Bits of History

“I’m just a patsy”

Posted in History by patriciahysell on October 31, 2010

Lee Harvey Oswald while living in Minsk

October 31, 1959: Lee Harvey Oswald, living in Moscow, states that he will never return to the US. Oswald was born in Louisiana. His father died before he was born. By the time he was 18 he had lived in 22 different places and attended 12 schools. At age 14, he was in NYC for a short time and picked up for truancy. He underwent psychiatric evaluation and was diagnosed with schizoid features and passive/aggressive tendencies. He was getting psychological treatment, but his mother moved them back to New Orleans.

He was not a good student but he loved to read. At age 15 he became a devout Marxist based solely on his reading. He dropped out of school at age 17 and joined the Civil Air Patrol. He then enlisted in the US Marine Corps, following his older brother. He was a radar operator for a time. He was not popular in the Marines because of his small size and Marxist leanings. He became violent and court–martialed twice with loss of rank. He applied for early discharge by falsely claiming hardship conditions.

In October 1959 at age 19, he moved to Moscow. He went to the US Embassy there and renounced his US citizenship. The KGB did not want Oswald in Russia, but a high official thought he might be of some use. He was allowed to stay and worked there for 30 months. While there he met a married a local girl.

They moved back to the US in June 1962. Oswald got a graphic arts job in Dallas, Texas from which he was fired in April 1963. Ten days later he attempted to assassinate General Edwin Walker, a vocal anti-Communist. He fled back to New Orleans, attempted to return to Moscow, moved on to Mexico with the hopes of getting to Cuba, and then went back to Dallas. On November 22, 1963 he shot John F. Kennedy. He was caught, arrested, charged and arraigned on that same day. On November 24, while being taken from the jail to the courthouse, he was shot and killed by Jack Ruby with the nation watching via television.

“I want citizenship because I am a communist and a worker, I have lived in a decadent capitalist society where the workers are slaves.”  – Lee Harvey Oswald

“I don’t know why you are treating me like this. The only thing I have done is carry a pistol into a movie.” – Lee Harvey Oswald

“Assassination’s the fastest way.” – Moliere

“Ordinarily he was insane, but he had lucid moments when he was merely stupid.” – Heinrich Heine

Also on this day, in 1912 D.W. Griffith’s movie, The Musketeers of Pig Alley, was released – the first gangster film.

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