“The panel itself was unable to examine the brain because it is among certain autopsy materials which are unaccounted for.”
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“I asked him [RFK], perhaps tactlessly, about Oswald. He said that there could be no serious doubt that he was guilty, but there was still argument whether he did it by himself or as part of a larger plot, whether organized by Castro or by gangsters. He said that the FBI thought he had done it by himself, but that McCone thought there were two people involved in the shooting.”
— Arthur Schlesinger writing about a conversation with Robert Kennedy on Dec. 5, 1963, quoted in Schlesinger’s Journals: 1952-2000, p. 214.
“It’s possible. It could happen in this country, but the conditions would have to be just right. If, for example, the country had a young President, and he had a Bay of Pigs, there would be a certain uneasiness. Maybe the military would do a little criticizing behind his back, but this would be written off as the usual military dissatisfaction with civilian control.”
JFK went on:
“Jim would prefer to wait out the Commission on the matter covered by paragraph 2…”
— CIA’s Raymond Rocca, writing to Richard Helms regarding counterintelligence chief James Angleton’s desire to stonewall the Warren Commission on certain CIA materials passed to the Secret Service.
“I think that the report, to those who have studied it closely, has collapsed like a house of cards, and I think the people who read it in the long-run future will see that. I frankly believe that we have shown that the [investigation of the] John F. Kennedy assassination was snuffed out before it even began, and that the fatal mistake the Warren Commission made was not to use its own investigators, but instead to rely on the CIA and FBI personnel, which played directly into the hands of senior intelligence officials who directed the cover-up.”
The large-scale declassification of JFK documents in the 1990s brought an estimated 4 million of pages of new assassination-related records into public view and generated a new era in JFK scholarship. But it also illuminated what is still missing or withheld from the public record. Among these are the vast bulk of the records of the Church Committee (named after Idaho Senator Frank Church), which in the mid-70s exposed the CIA plots to kill Cuban leader Fidel Castro among many other abuses.
“If the CIA did find out what we were doing [talks toward normalizing relations with Cuba], this would have trickled down to the lower echelon of activists, and Cuban exiles, and the more gung-ho CIA people who had been involved since the Bay of Pigs…. Read more
“This is almost as bad as the appeasement at Munich.”
— Air Force General Curtis LeMay to JFK upon being told that the U.S. would respond to Soviet missiles in Cuba with a blockade, not an invasion. Read more
Warren Commission Exhibit 903.
Arlen Specter demonstrates the
single-bullet theory in May 1964.
When young journalist Gaeton Fonzi interviewed former Warren Commission staff lawyer Arlen Specter in 1966, he expected the talented Specter to have ready answers to the questions which were then swirling around the medical aspects of the JFK case. Specter’s “single bullet theory” was under attack in such books as Edward Epstein’s Inquest, and in scholarly articles by Vincent Salandria in a legal journal (see here and here).
“I now no longer believe anything the Agency [CIA] told the committee any further than I can obtain substantial corroboration for it from outside the Agency for its veracity…. “
— G. Robert Blakey, former Chief Counsel to the House Select Committee on Assassinations, in an addendum to the web page for the Frontline episode “Who Was Lee Harvey Oswald?”.
“We know the CIA was involved, and the Mafia. We all know that.”
— Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Inter-American Affairs Richard Goodwin, quoted in David Talbot’s “Brothers: The Hidden History of the Kennedy Years,” p. 303.
“Should have phoney 201 in RI to backstop this, all documents therein forged & backdated. Should look like a CE file …. Cover: planning should include provision for blaming Sovs or Czechs in case of blow.”
— Excerpt from “Project ZRRIFLE” notes, created in December 1960, by William K. Harvey, the CIA officer in charge of this assassinations project.
“I think this record ought to be destroyed.”
— Warren Commissioner Allen Dulles, during a January 22, 1964, executive session at which the allegation that Lee Harvey Oswald was a paid informant for the FBI was discussed.
“After those interviews with Arlen Specter, my belief in that government would never be the same.”
— Investigative journalist Gaeton Fonzi, writing about his 1966 interviews with former Warren Commission staff lawyer Arlen Specter.
“I’m as certain as one can be that there was no other gun shot …. But it’s not silliness to speculate that somebody was behind Oswald …. I’d almost bet on the [anti-Castro] Cubans.” Read more