Monday, November 22, 2010

The Sixth Floor Museum, JFK and Assassinated Composers and Lyricist

Today marks the 47th anniverary of the assassination of John F. Kennedy, the thirty-fifth President of the United States, which took place on Friday, November 22, 1963, in Dallas, Texas, at 12:30 p.m. in Dealey Plaza. Kennedy was fatally shot while riding with his wife Jacqueline in a Presidential motorcade. God bless his soul...

I was fortunate to have visited the The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza in Dallas Texas which is located on the sixth and seventh floors of an early 20th-century warehouse known in 1963 as the Texas School Book Depository. Opened on Presidents Day 1989, the Museum has since welcomed more than 6 million visitors from around the world—people of all ages seeking information and understanding about the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. The museum tours are self-guided. After the tour, JFK memorabilia is sold at the museum store near the entrance. I was able to get a sticker magnet which showed JFK on a postage stamp.

An assassination is the targeted killing of a public figure, usually for political purposes. Assassinations may be prompted by religious, ideological, political, or military reasons. Additionally, assassins may be motivated by financial gain, revenge, or personal public recognition. Assassination may also refer to the government-sanctioned killing of opponents or to targeted attacks on high-profile enemy combatants.

In figurative language usage, the word assassination may also be used in colloquial speech as a hyperbole, as in the phrase "character assassination", meaning an attempt to impugn another character, and thus kill ("assassinate") his reputation and credibility.

The word assassin is derived from the Arabic word Hashshashin, referred to the Persian designation of the Nizari branch of the Ismā'īlī Shia under the instruction of Hassan aṣ-Ṣabbaḥ during the Middle Ages. They were active in the fort of Alamut in Iran from the eighth to the fourteenth centuries. This group killed members of the Arab Abbasid, Seljuq and crusaders élite for political and religious reasons, but mostly targeted the knights Templar and the ruling Sunni kings in the name of the Fatimid Shia Sultans of Egypt. Later, after Egypt became Sunni during the campaigns of Saladin, Assassins continued on their own account.

The earliest known literary use of the word assassination is in Macbeth by William Shakespeare (1605).

Some of the anthem composers who were killed, shot or assassinated include Thomas Sankara (Burkina Faso), Amilcar Cabral (Guinea-Bissau), Juan Jose Landaeta, Nie Er of China (suspected- drowning) and Barthelemy Boganda of Central African Republic (suspected- plane crash).

The stamp above was issued by Niger in 1998 to commemorate John F. Kennedy's assassination.