Americans are infatuated with the idea of conspiracy theories. These strange and often impossible tales tempt us, often causing us to abandon logic in the pursuit of supernatural, and secretive happenings. Of all of the theories that run through the public conscious three stand out as the most repeated, and endeared; these are those stories.
Conspiracy! The very word causes us to erupt with fervent curiosity. Whatever it is about these strange legends, that grabs our imagination, and causes us to want to put faith in the unbelievable, it has not weakened since the birth of written language. History is riddled with the well eaten remains of unsolved mysteries, and the amateur projections that breathe the life of urban reanimation into them. While not uniquely American in their existence, those that have come to life in our nation, tend to be as unique as the country itself. They draw not only the attention of millions of citizens nationally, but break the borders of land and sea, and spill into the international conscious. Please enjoy now, the top three conspiracies from the last one hundred years.
Number Three: Roswell
Location: Roswell, NM
Date: July 8, 1947
Roswell is an interesting case; not only because of its seventy years of dedicated believers who continue to produce random pieces of evidence, but also because of its timing. 1947, the ashes of World War II are still smoldering in Europe, and a new war is slowly boiling to the surface like super heated magma. Tensions are on the rise between Russia, and the U.S.A. The use of Atom Bombs, by the US against Japan, has sparked an unprecedented race for arms technologies. New forms of fighting machines, especially flying crafts, are being developed in rapid succession by every developed nation.
Between May 2nd, and July 12, 1947, there were 16 sightings of strange lights and flying craft over the New Mexico desert; most of which were centered around the small town of Roswell. The government had by this point, been a large presence in the vast expanses of New Mexico, as a result of the Manhattan Project, which had lead to the development of the Atom Bomb. Most people in and around Roswell, were already suffering from a distrust, caused by what many considered to be an invasion of government black suits, and secret operations.
On July 8, 1947, the Roswell Daily Record, reported that a local rancher (later idenetified as W.M. Brazel) had watched a large, ovular shaped disc, crash with great speed into the ground near his ranch. After alerting the local police, the FAA was informed, and they sent an Air Force inspection team to investigate the site.
On July 9, 1947, just one day later, The Roswell Daily Record headlined their morning edition paper "Ramey Empties Roswell Saucer." The name Ramey, referred to General Roger Ramey, who had been assigned the investigation by the Air Force. The mention of the word "Saucer" was the birth place of the alien conspiracy at Roswell.
Although the official report was changed to an incident involving a weather balloon, the rumors of aliens crash landing in the New Mexico desert persist to this day. Although both Ramey, and Brazel gave testimony under oath in 1978, confirming that what they saw did indeed match the description of a weather balloon, many people accept this only as government bribery, and more black book cover up. Opinions and theories abound, concerning Roswell. Some are more rational than the others, but the mystery remains; biting the ankles of conspiracy theorists the world over.
Number Two: The Assassination of John F. Kennedy
Location: Dallas, TX
Date: November 22, 1963
John Fitzgerald Kennedy, is perhaps one of the most beloved figures in American History. His assassination, in November, 1963, not only brought an untimely end to a bright political career, but also martyred him; making him a both a legend, and a saint.
Although JFK was a popular president, he was not without demons. His rocky marriage to Jackie Kennedy, had been tarnished by a mounting number of extra marital affairs; the most renowned of which was with legendary American actress Marilyn Monroe. Shortly after becoming president, many of his political enemies had begun to dig up, and release information which ultimately linked JFK undeniably to the most powerful organized crime families in the US. His father, Joseph Kennedy, had acquired much of his wealth by bootlegging, and racketeering.
On November 22, JFK traveled to Dallas Fort Worth. Most report that he was in Texas, the home state of Vice President Lyndon Johnson, to garner added support for his upcoming campaign for reelection. He had spent the night before in San Antonio, and when he arrived in Dallas, he made a strange and fateful decision. After talking with Jackie, and agreeing that the weather was too beautiful to ignore; JFK decided that he would travel in his Presidential Limousine with the top down.
The motorcade left the airport, and began its trek through the heart of downtown Dallas. The streets were lined with citizens who wanted to catch a fleeting glimpse of the American hero, and Civil Rights strongman. As the motorcade approached an area of downtown called Dealey Plaza, the crowds had become thick. Seconds after entering the plaza, JFK lunged forward in the back seat, and grasped his throat. At the same time, Governor John Connally, who was riding in the front seat, grasped his chest. Less than two seconds later, JFK's head exploded into a fine red mist. The first lady, who had been cradling her husband seconds earlier, jumped from her seat as pieces of skull, and gray matter spattered across her body.
JFK was taken to Parkland Memorial Hospital, which was just minutes away. He was pronounced dead less than an hour later. As the nation began to mourne the death of their beloved president, agents arrested Lee Harvey Oswald; an admitted communist, who had been working that morning in a book depository that overlooked Dealey Plaza. When the police investigated the depository, they found a rifle, the rifle contained Oswald's fingerprints. Oswald was immediately charged with the murder of JFK. Two days after being arrested, the FBI, in preparing to transport Oswald, was caught off guard, when notorious mobster Jack Ruby walked towards Oswald and shot him on live television.
It didn't take long for conspiracy theories to begin to circulate. The first of which made Oswald a Patsy for the Mob. Some of the theories don't even make Oswald the murderer, but rather a fall guy for a plot that went straight to JFK's own cabinet members. Whatever the secret was, Jack Ruby took it to his grave when he died of cancer in 1967.
Since the assassination, the conspiracy theory has evolved to include multiple shooters, the mob, JFK's own family, and many, many other ideas. In 1964, the Warren Commission, established by Johnson to look into the assassination, declared that Oswald had acted alone, and that he had acted out of his own hate of the President, based on his communistic views. The country continued to question the validity of the Commissions report, and was stirred even further when Oliver Stone released his conspiritorial classic JFK. The story continues to gather steam until this day.
Number One: Area 51
Location: Groom Lake, NV
Date: Present Day
Area 51, is a "secret" military base established in the early days of the cold war, at then end of WWII. The site was officially listed, according to declassified documents, as a testing site for experimental aircraft. Indeed it is true, that the site produced the wildly successful U2 spy plane program.
The site however carries with it an ominous presence, and curiosity has been peaked by some of the government's unexplainable stances on the site. Officially, the government denied its existence until 1996. Refusing to acknowledge, or even discuss the site, it wasn't until the late 1980's, when a scientist and former employee at the site, Bob Lazar, came forward stating the government was hidning alien aircraft at the site. He claimed that the site was the home of alien aircraft, collected at the Roswell site, and reverse engineered by US scientists and engineers.
The government promptly denied the report, even going so far as to say that Lazar had never worked for Area 51, or any other government agency. Lazar embarrassed the government, when he produced his government ID, and was able to provide many journalists and reporters with transportation schedules, as well as an exact mapping of the facility.
Lazar himself has admitted that if he were given the same information, he would have a hard time believing it as well. But the site becomes even stranger, when one considers the security around the site. It is nearly impossible to get within a hlaf mile of the base. IT is protected by private security contractors, motion sensor alarms, smelling technologies, air radar, helicopters and jets. It is adorned on all sides by signs that state clearly, that trespassers will be shot without regard. While the government has worked to debunk the legends that surround the site, but have failed to do so.
Area 51, has become the subject of thousands of websites, books, and collgiate level reports. Some of the known information we have about the site, is its location in groom lake. It's employment of several hundred scientists and engineers; we also know that these employees are transported to the site from the Las Vegas International Airport, in a series of plain black airplanes, which appear to leave the airport every few days. This leads most to believe that the base is run on a cyclical schedule, like many of the country's nuclear bases.