JFK assassination files reveal new details, 300 documents still held

World Today

Some questions about the assassination of U.S. President John F. Kennedy will remain unanswered for now. The government released nearly 3000 declassified documents.

But, in a last minute decision, withheld around 300 – at the request of the CIA and FBI.

CGTN’s Jim Spellman has the latest on what’s in the release.

At the time U.S. President Kennedy was shot in 1963, the CIA was plotting to assassinate Fidel Castro, even approaching a mafia connected gangster and offering him $150,000 to kill the Cuban leader. That was according to newly released U.S. government documents.

Another document revealed a conversation between two Cuban intelligence officers in Mexico City discussing Lee Harvey Oswald, the man who shot Kennedy. It reads: “Oswald must have been a good shot. ‘Oh, he was quite good.” Asked how he knew this Abreu replied ‘I knew him.’

There was no indication in the documents that Cuba was connected to the shooting of JFK, but U.S. intelligence agencies have resisted releasing these documents. “Gosh knows how many people our government tried to kill or did kill during that period of time. And that’s why they’re afraid of releasing this, ’cause it will hurt the CIA in particularly, and to some extent, I think it’ll hurt the FBI,” said Hugh Aynesworth, a journalist who had witnessed Kennedy’s assassination.

Lee Harvey Oswald was apprehended shortly after shooting Kennedy. Two days later, he was gunned down by Dallas nightclub owner Jack Ruby.

A document from FBI director J. Edgar Hoover said that the FBI knew Oswald was in danger. Hoover states in the memo that they “received a call in our Dallas office from a man talking in a calm voice and saying he was a member of a committee organized to kill Oswald, ” and went on to push for a quick release of a report blaming Oswald.

Hoover also seemed to argue against a more thorough investigation; warning that “there are several aspects which would complicate our foreign relations.”

There’s little chance that these documents will put an end to JFK assassination conspiracy theories. “For those already lack faith in government, they’ll continue to lack faith, perhaps even a little more,” explained Dan Mahaffee from the Center for the Study of the Presidency and Congress.

U.S. government agencies, including the CIA and FBI, pushed the Trump administration to not release the final batch of about 300 Kennedy Assassination documents. The White House has given those agencies six more months to review and release those documents and vows to only redact the most sensitive documents.