Heartland historian reacts to documents surrounding JFK assassination

Professor reacts to JFK assassination records released
Updated: Oct. 26, 2017 at 8:56 PM CDT
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CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - Thousands of pages withheld from the public surrounding the JFK assassination are now available online in the National Archives - but not everything.

President Donald Trump blocked the release of some documents following appeals from the CIA and FBI.

Dr. Joel Rhodes, a professor at Southeast Missouri State University, says he can't wait to see what the previously secret documents reveal.

"The assassination has really come to define the President and his legacy," Dr. Rhodes said. "Conspiracies like this, secrets like this, don't tend to stay locked up as tightly as they have, and if anything it's gotten more tight over the years."

As a historian of the Cold War, Dr. Rhodes, is curious to see what these documents reveal in the months leading up to the Kennedy assassination.

"There is a possibility that somehow the CIA botched this," he said.

Today, senior administration officials reported that the CIA and the FBI made most of the requests to keep the remaining files about Kennedy's assassination confidential.
Dr. Rhodes thinks there could be something to their resistance.

"The CIA and FBI had been watching Lee Harvey Oswald for quite some time," Dr. Rhodes said. "It may look embarrassing to the CIA that if they had gathered enough intelligence to deem him a real threat. Why wasn't the secret service informed of this, could the CIA and/or the FBI have done something keep this from happening."

Whatever the finding, Dr. Rhodes believes the conspiracies will always be there.

"I don't imagine that there will be any more fuel to the conspiracy fire, but neither do I think this is going to solve anything," Dr. Rhodes said.

It could take days even weeks to uncover what, if anything, the documents say about Kennedy's assassination.

National Public Radio (NPR) is asking for citizen journalists to read through the documents and report anything they find newsworthy.

Click here for more.

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