By Leilah Saab
Countless conspiracy theories have emerged over the years concerning the planning, execution, and cover-up of the assassination of US President John F. Kennedy. President Kennedy’s death is without a doubt one of the most controversial and hotly debated events in history, even before one takes into account any elements of the paranormal. Any subject that combines UFO research with the Kennedy assassination is a literal gold mine for conspiracy theorists, and truth seekers alike. One such theory has remained constant and involves just that – convoluted tales of UFO clean-up crews intersecting with shadowy, shady, puppet mastered governments. Allow me to introduce Majestic 12, also more affectionately known as MJ-12.
If you’re not familiar, MJ-12 is a supposed secret society that is often mentioned in discussions regarding (you guessed it) UFOs and the Kennedy assassination. The existence of MJ-12 has never been ‘officially’ confirmed, but many documents that ‘unofficially’ describe its clandestine activities have been circulated over the years. MJ-12 was allegedly begun in 1947 under the direction of US President Harry S. Truman and was comprised of a secret committee of scientists, military leaders, and various government officials. Their central mission was facilitating the research and recovery of UFO events. One of the most famous incidents involving extraterrestrial phenomena is of course the Roswell UFO incident, which occurred in 1947 when an unidentified object crash landed on a ranch near Roswell, New Mexico. Some conspiracy theorists claim that MJ-12 was formed specifically to investigate the Roswell crash and to cover up any evidence of extraterrestrial life. It is worth mentioning that President Truman is believed by some to have played a role in the Kennedy assassination, either as part of a cover-up or as a co-conspirator. According to some, Truman was completely aware of MJ-12’s activities, and he may have even ordered the assassination of Kennedy in order to prevent him from revealing the truth about UFOs and extraterrestrial life to the American people.
Richard Doty is another name that gets mentioned in discussions about MJ-12 and various UFO related activities. Doty is a former Special Agent of the U.S. Air Force Office of Special Investigations and is widely believed to have been involved with several alleged disinformation campaigns. For the most part, Doty is known as a shady counter intel agent, whose job is basically to mix the truth with lies, and to pretend to be friends with people in order to extract information from them. Doty has admitted to being involved in the spreading of false information about UFOs in the past but denies any involvement in the Kennedy assassination. However, some believe, this writer included, that Doty is not completely innocent, and that he was part of a wider reaching conspiracy involving the CIA, military intelligence, and organized crime, to eliminate Kennedy.
Knowledge of MJ-12’s so called existence stemmed from a series of supposedly leaked secret government documents. As these reports started to make their rounds in the early 1980s, the FBI affirmed that the documents were in no uncertain terms “completely bogus.” Many ufologists support the FBI’s analysis, and they also believe that these “government documents” are little more than an elaborate hoax. Dr. William A. Lester alludes to one such document in his book, A Celebration of Freedom: JFK and the New Frontier. Lester reports that while researching material for his book, he discovered an alleged top-secret memo written by Kennedy on Nov. 12, 1963, but according to Dr. Lester, something seemed off about the document causing him to question its validity. In the memo, the president instructed the director of the CIA to organize all their UFO files, and to debrief him on anything that was considered to be “unknown” no later than February of the next year. Sadly, we all know how the rest of that story plays out, and ten days later Kennedy was assassinated. Let’s take a step back for a second though and talk about that memo. Was this document authentic? Was Kennedy about to uncover forbidden information on UFOs and had to be eliminated? Or is this memo a phony piece of controlled opposition, whose intended purpose is to continue to sow doubt and confusion amongst the masses? Whatever the explanation is, one thing is certain about the powers that be; the United States federal government routinely declassifies documents after a certain amount of time passes. A “certain amount of time” usually means that everyone involved has either passed on, or they are too old to care. After a document is declassified, private citizens can submit requests to access them. The memo in question would have been declassified sometime around the year 2006 or 2007, but as far as I have been able to tell, the only other place this “top-secret memo” has been seen is in Lester’s book. At the time of the writing of this article, the JFK Library in Boston, which holds copies of all of Kennedy’s letters, was also unable to find a carbon copy of said memo in the presidential archive. Despite the fact that JFK kept carbon copies of all his letters, even the classified ones, no evidence of anything like the memo was found. All of the president’s office files were searched, including CIA, NASA, and National Security files and they found more of the same. There was no further evidence of the November 12, 1963 memo to the director of the CIA. Additionally, it is alleged that the memo in question does not resemble other top secret memos written by Kennedy during his presidency.
While the idea of a vast conspiracy involving government officials, extraterrestrials, and secret organizations like Majestic-12 may seem appealing or even plausible to some, it is important to approach such claims with a healthy dose of skepticism and critical thinking, but to also keep asking the real questions. In this instance, I’m reminded of another former president, Bill Clinton. It is said that shortly after being elected president in 1993, Clinton asked a close friend of his (who he would later appoint to his cabinet in the Department of Justice), to find out two very important details for him: Who killed Kennedy, and are there UFO’s?