Category: From the Files

JFK in Ireland

From the Secret JFK Files, Praise for a CIA Officer Who Monitored Oswald

The secret JFK assassinations files now under review at the White House include the records of senior CIA officers who knew about the supposed assassin Lee Harvey Oswald before President Kennedy was killed on November 22, 1963.

The Public Interest Declassification Board, which advises the president on historical issues, has urged President Biden to insure “maximum disclosure” in JFK files, set for release on October 26. Sabato’s Crystal Ball has examined the uneven enforcement of the JFK Records Act. WhoWhatWhy asks, “Will Biden Follow the Law?”

I want to share with readers, reporters, and Twitter, what is on the public record about these officers, individually and collectively. These files may shed light on the breakdown of presidential security in Dallas on November 22, 1963.

2) WATCH: ‘Oswald was known to a dozen senior CIA officials’

I make a strong claim about the CIA and Lee Harvey Oswald in this video. I think the new JFK files corroborate my observation. But I’d like to get independent verification, preferably from a reputable fact-checking service like Snopes.

1) Birch O’Neal: the CIA’s unknown Oswald expert

One of the most significant new JFK assassination files concerns a CIA officer you almost certainly never never heard of.

Birch O’Neal is virtually unknown in the vast literature of JFK’s assassination. He is not mentioned in the reports of the Warren Commission or the House Select Committee on Assassinations. He figures in no conspiracy theories.

Dec. 16, 1963: Behind closed doors, the Warren Commission is baffled

With the FBI’s report on Kennedy’s assassination, the Commission undertook to select staffers and figure out how to approach its work.

Chief Justice Warren complained about the leaks of the FBI report:  “I have read that report two or three times and I have not seen anything in there that has not been in the press.”

The Commissioners then held a wide-ranging discussion of JFK’s assasination, including:

FBI suspected leftist magazine was a foreign agent when it accurately reported on the CIA

Files recently released to MuckRock shed light on the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s investigation of the radical Ramparts magazine. Originally classified SECRET, the investigation described in the FBI files was an “internal security” matter relating to the magazine’s registration status. Paralleling and seemingly predicting some of the later investigations of WikiLeaks, the Bureau suspected that Ramparts “may currently be engaged in acts of distribution of propaganda, acting as a political agent,

Source: FBI suspected “Ramparts” was a foreign agent that provided propaganda and intelligence services • MuckRock

Missing from the new JFK files: a batch of CIA records on Lee Harvey Oswald

Oswald in Custody
Lee Harvey Oswald

All of the U.S. government’s files on the assassination of President John F. Kennedy are supposed to be released by October 26. But one batch of the CIA records on suspected assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald, has gone missing.

The records were part of a 7-volume file on Oswald, held by the agency’s Office of Security (OS), which is responsible for protecting CIA property and vetting agency personnel. Declassified CIA records show that volume 5 of the file records existed in 1978. The contents of the missing file are not known.

The disappearance of the records, discovered by JFK researcher Malcolm Blunt, is significant because the Office of Security was the first component of the CIA to open a file on Oswald, an ex-Marine who defected to the Soviet Union in October 1959.

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