We don’t exactly know WHY nearly 50-year-old JFK documents are being kept secret, but Russ Baker looks at HOW they keep up the shell game. This is instructive in irself, though not always satisfying.
Is the Government Holding Back Crucial Documents? by Russ Baker
Next year will be a half-century since the death of JFK. And the Obama Administration thinks we need to keep secret the records on the matter….a little longer yet.
Believe it or not, more than 50,000 pages of JFK assassination-related documents are being withheld in full. And an untold number of documents have been partially withheld, or released with everything interesting blacked out. But why?
Since the government and the big media keep telling us there was no conspiracy, and that it was all Lee Harvey Oswald acting on his own, why continue to keep the wraps on?
We don’t have an answer, but in understanding this and any number of other mysteries, we can begin looking for patterns in the way the administration handles information policy.
For some perspective, meet Sheryl Shenberger. She’s the head of the Archives’ National Declassification Center. What would you guess Sheryl’s professional background would be? Library of Congress? Academic research? Nope. Before NDC, Sheryl worked for….the Central Intelligence Agency.
The most logical and reasonable explanation for this is that the Obama administration placed an ex-spook in charge of declassification because this would induce her old colleagues in Langley to cooperate. (Which of course raises the question of whether, in a real democracy, you would want to have a bunch of people secretly deciding to do whatever they wanted with 50-year-old documents pertaining to a supposed loony loner who whacked a president.)
Frustrated by the administration’s foot-dragging on JFK, AARC sent a letter urging the government to get off its duff. One signer was G. Robert Blakey, who served as a Chief Counsel to the House Select Committee on Assassinations (which in its 1978 final report said that, um…it looks like an organized conspiracy was responsible for JFK’s death.)
ARRC’s letter was dated January 20, 2012. According to Lesar, there has still been no reply—though NARA says it is working on it.
Release of the remaining documents, under the President John F. Kennedy Assassination Records Collection Act of 1992, can be postponed until October 26, 2017. Not so bad, you say? Actually, the Act further states that even in 2017, the president may decide to drag this on further, by withholding records indefinitely.
Records activists expect the CIA to petition for just such a decision. Any bets on President Hillary or President Mitt—or, quite possibly, President Jeb Bush, doing the right thing? With all the secrets Jeb’s father has to hide?