A zine cover with a blood-stained illustration of a man looking at a newspaper that says "Cuba" on it

The CIA Makes Science Fiction Unexciting #6: The Life of Lee Harvey Oswald

by Joe Biel Author with Abner Smith

An intimate, never-seen-before examination of the life and death of Lee Harvey Oswald. Where other would-be Oswald biographies focus on the immediate events leading up to the 1963 assassination of President John F. Kennedy, here we have a full and panoramic look at Oswald's short, conflicted, adventure-filled life. Using exclusive info and newly declassified documents, CIAMSFU #6 puts into perspective a richly-detailed version of the Oswald story, from birth in 1939 to his historic televised assassination. This is Lee Harvey Oswald the husband, the son, the brother—a man whose personality profile differs wildly from the “Lee as lone-wingnut” theory crafted by the Warren Commission. Much of this info is seen here for the first time in print—info that does much to humanize the controversial and polarizing man. As the zine states, the most interesting parts of Oswald's tale are what's missing in the storytelling of previous versions. Packed with interview text featuring figures as close to Oswald as his wife and mother, CIAMSFU #6 shows us Lee as a confused Marxist, an employee, a soldier, a lover, a people person, a trouble-starter, a world traveler, a show-off, even a “real cutie.” This is a zine that tells us that while the events are from the past, the topics discussed are still heavily relevant. The tactics used by the government in this story are still being employed to this day; the lies and the propaganda are still being forced on us and will be so until we educate, fight, and change our way of thinking. Shocking, humanizing—whatever you take away from it—this is the most fascinating and fast-moving CIA zine to date. A great addition to this well-loved series.

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Comments & Reviews


Focuses its lens this time on Lee Harvey Oswald and the utterly confusing litany of events that led him to being pegged as the guy who pulled the trigger on Kennedy. This zine has always tackled compelling topics that are not easily explained, but it has consistently failed to do so in a way that doesn't further confuse the issue. I can appreciate shedding light on things that others try to bury, but hey, at least do it in a way that compels one to look further into it instead of confusing readers to the point where they wish it got buried forever. This zine makes Oswald look like either a flip-flopping idiot, or a complete schizophrenic who changes his mind like the wind blows. On one end he has a master plan, on the other he bumbles his way through all sorts of wild adventures seeking attention, eventually stumbling into the business end of Jack Ruby's pistol. And in the background it appears there is a watchful government ready to set him up as the patsy who takes the attention off of however many different shady organizations who really pulled the trigger on JFK. Is that what the author was going for? That's what I read anyway. Confusing? Yes. But the whole ordeal from beginning to end no matter what version you read is pretty damn confusing.


Juicy and informative and very readable.


I think these zines are a great Introduction to many topics, like most great things they make you want to research for yourself and learn even more.
Keep up the amazing work always.