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On Thursday, the U.S. government released 2,891 documents on the assassination of John F. Kennedy and let’s be real: you’re probably not going to read them. So here are the juicy bits according to the people who already have.
The Guardian reports that the documents contain no “smoking gun” nor a photo of another shooter waving, or anything like that. But there are lots of interesting details; for instance, that J Edgar Hoover warned the FBI that someone might attempt to kill Lee Harvey Oswald:
“There is nothing further on the Oswald case except that he is dead,” Hoover said on 24 November 1963. “Last night we received a call in our Dallas office from a man talking in a calm voice and saying he was a member of a committee organised to kill Oswald.
“We at once notified the chief of police and he assured us Oswald would be given sufficient protection. This morning we called the chief of police again warning of the possibility of some effort against Oswald and again he assured us adequate protection would be given.
“However, this was not done.”
A Reddit thread posted in /r/AskReddit/ wanted to know what the conspiracy theorists combing through the papers with a fine-tooth comb discovered, or at least found the most interesting, and they came up with good stuff. For instance, /u/heyandy889 directed everyone’s attention to the Soviet Union’s reaction to Kennedy’s assassination. The USSR basically renounced Oswald (who some thought was a Russian agent), and believed that his acts were part of a larger conspiracy of the “ultra-right,” who wanted overthrow Kennedy’s presidency.
A reporter on the UK’s Cambridge Evening News received an anonymous call telling him to ring the US embassy for some big news, 25 minutes before the murder of John F Kennedy
I found this somewhat negative employee performance review for a CIA (asset/agent) in Mexico. It touches on his trouble with money-management, his fights with his wife who is 25 years younger than him, and his fondness for his mother-in-law, who, the reviewing supervisor notes, “does not in the case seem to be the problem that one would imagine.”
Testimony from Dwight D. Eisenhower’s son John Eisenhower that he believed his father did not approve of assassination plots (mostly aimed at Castro) and did not plan to commit any based on the fact that his father would have told him, because his father told him about the atomic bomb. Interesting stuff.https://www.archives.gov/files/research/jfk/releases/docid-32423432.pdf
Also here’s a detailed chronological order of the CIA giving weapons including revolvers, carbines, and possibly explosives to the group who killed Rafael Trujillo (leader of the Dominican Republic at the time) in hopes a more pro US group would take over. Though some of this was already known. Starts on page 68 https://www.archives.gov/files/research/jfk/releases/docid-32112745.pdf
EDIT: Here’s one I found on the Cubana flight 455 bombing. Apparently Orlando Bosch, leader of the Coordination of United Revolutionary Organisations which was supported by the US, was involved but meant for the plane to explode on the ground not in the air. One of the other people involved Hernan Ricardo also attempted to bomb two other Cubana planes, a Cuban consulate, and a planned bombing of Hong Kong. https://www.archives.gov/files/research/jfk/releases/docid-32297750.pdf
But my personal favourite is this story of Dorothy Kilgallen, from /u/newsydsyder18, a news reporter who was rumoured to be researching Oswald and carrying her file for a breaking story on her person at all times — and she ended up dead. Apparently, Nixon had a file with her name on it that was not declassified with these other papers. That’s a thread that will take you down the rabbit-hole. Enjoy.