Following his nephew’s allegations that U.S. intelligence agents may have been involved in his 1963 death, former President Donald Trump promised this week to make all documents pertaining to the killing of former President John F. Kennedy public.
“I released a lot, as you know. And I’ll release everything else,” Trump said on Monday, talking about the Kennedy records, in an interview with The Messenger.
When Trump was president, he made some records public but not all of them. His administration claimed at the time that it was unable to make all of the records public because “certain information should continue to be redacted because of identifiable national security, law enforcement, and foreign affairs concerns.”
“I agree with the Archivist’s recommendation that the continued withholdings are necessary to protect against identifiable harm to national security, law enforcement, or foreign affairs that is of such gravity that it outweighs the public interest in immediate disclosure. I am also ordering agencies to re-review each of those redactions over the next 3 years. At any time during that review period, and no later than the end of that period, agencies shall disclose information that no longer warrants continued withholding,” a statement by Trump’s office declared in 2018.
George H.W. Bush, the president at the time and a former CIA director, signed a law requiring the release of all JFK-related documents into law in 1992. But other presidential administrations, including the Biden administration, have postponed making the whole set of materials public.
Later, although he chose not to reveal all the assassination data, Biden did provide certain information. More than 13,000 documents, including details regarding suspect Lee Harvey Oswald and his time in Mexico City, were made public by federal authorities in late December.
However, the CIA claims that roughly 4,300 data continue to be blacked out and censored. “We believe all CIA records substantively related to [former CIA agent George] Joannides were previously released, with only minor redactions, such as CIA employees’ names and locations,” the agency stated at the time in a news release, adding that “tremendous progress” had been made.
In an interview with The Messenger, Trump was questioned about whether the public should be concerned about anything related to the JFK archives. “Well, I don’t want to comment on that,” Trump said. “But I will tell you that I have released a lot. I will release the remaining portion very early in my term.”
This month, the assassination of JFK made headlines around the country once more after 2024 Democratic contender Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. stated in interviews with media sites that he believes the CIA was involved in his uncle’s death in November 1963. Before being shot and killed by nightclub owner Jack Ruby, who was apparently suspected of being a member of the mob, Oswald, a former Marine who once defected to the Soviet Union, was captured and charged with the murder. Ruby eventually died in custody.
“There is overwhelming evidence that the CIA was involved in his murder. I think it’s beyond a reasonable doubt at this point,” Kennedy said on radio station WABC 770 this year. “The evidence is overwhelming that the CIA was involved in the murder, and in the cover-up,” he declared.
Later, he revealed to another news organization that following JFK’s assassination, his father, former Sen. Robert F. Kennedy, automatically assumed that the CIA might be responsible. Kennedy has made similar assertions in the past. He has also claimed that Sen. Kennedy wasn’t assassinated in 1968 at a California resort by Palestinian supporter Sirhan Sirhan, but rather by someone else.
Whether the government’s account—that Oswald was the lone shooter—is true has been the subject of speculations for more than 60 years. Oswald was a solitary player, according to the Warren Commission Report, but a 1979 report released by a House committee speculated that there might have been two gunmen.
Jim Garrison, a district attorney from Louisiana, had also looked into the allegations surrounding the 1963 shooting and written many books about it. One of his novels served as the inspiration for Oliver Stone’s “JFK” film, starring Kevin Costner, which increased the likelihood that the CIA may have been involved.
Kennedy Jr., who is challenging Biden for the Democratic Party candidacy, is arguably best known for his opinions on several infant immunizations. In reaction to Kennedy’s allegations, Biden hasn’t issued any public statements.
Kennedy Jr. spoke to People Magazine before the 2022 release of documents by the National Archives. He actually accused both Presidents Biden and Trump of going back on their words.
According to People, “Thousands of documents related to the assassination had remained hidden from public view, CNN reported in 2021. Then in December 2022, a large majority of those documents were released by the National Archives. The 13,000 documents released were among the second of two “document dumps,” as CNN stated. President Joe Biden made the order in 2021 when the White House postponed the public release due to the pandemic.”
“They should just release the records. It’s been 58 years,” he (Kennedy Jr.) said at the time. “Are they trying to seriously tell us they haven’t had time to read them? … And the White House is saying they haven’t had time to read them in three generations. It just makes people think that government lies, and it makes Joe Biden look like a liar. He’s doing the same thing Trump did: He promised to release them and now he’s saying no, the same as Trump.”
The CIA has a report on its website that asserts that the notion that it was engaged in the former president’s murder is untrue, despite the fact that it did not respond to an Epoch Times request for comment earlier this month. The 2000 study proposed that the claims made by Garrison in his books might be the result of a Soviet Union “disinformation scheme.”
Trump’s interview on The Messenger.