The political world has been abuzz this week as the infamous JFK assassination documents were finally set to be declassified. President Trump recently announced his desire and willingness to finally let them see the light of day, and Thursday night, they were finally set for release.
However, at the last moment, the CIA, FBI, and other intelligence agencies were able to convince the president to keep the more sensitive documents under wraps, much to the dismay of practically everyone. However, while the best parts may still remain classified, the National Archives have released around 2,800 files related to the assassination, and thus far, some interesting, never-before-seen details have already been found.
As reported at the New York Post, the documents reveal that the Soviet Union speculated that Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson was behind JFK’s assassination, and was fully aware that regardless, the Kremlin would likely be blamed for the attack.
The Dec. 1, 1966, FBI memo, which relayed unconfirmed speculation, noted that sources said the KGB “was in possession of data purporting to indicate President Johnson was responsible for the assassination of the late President John F. Kennedy.”
The memo, which was forwarded to the White House by FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover with the all-caps title “REACTION OF SOVIET AND COMMUNIST PARTY OFFICIALS TO THE ASSASSINATION OF PRESIDENT JOHN F. KENNEDY,” said:
“KGB headquarters indicated that in view of this information, it was necessary for the Soviet Government to know the existing personal relationship between President Johnson and the Kennedy family, particularly that between President Johnson and Robert and ‘Ted’ Kennedy.”
The Soviets thought that in the aftermath of the killing, American military leaders would take the opportunity to stir up anti-Soviet sentiment and use the slaying as justification for an attack on Moscow.
Soviets feared dark US forces were “interested in utilizing the assassination and playing on anticommunist sentiments in the United States,” according to the FBI.
“Our source further stated that Soviet officials were fearful that without leadership, some irresponsible general in the United States might launch a missile attack on the Soviet Union.”
While Soviets thought JFK’s assassination was some kind of internal political plot, Johnson believed there was a foreign connection to Lee Harvey Oswald’s actions.
Throughout his presidency, Johnson would regularly say he believed JFK’s murder was payback for CIA involvement in the assassination of South Vietnam’s head of state, documents showed.
LBJ’s CIA director, Richard Helms, said in a deposition that Johnson wasn’t shy in sharing his own JFK conspiracy theories.
“President Johnson used to go around saying that the reason President Kennedy was assassinated was that he had assassinated President Diem,” Helms said during an April 23, 1975, deposition at Langley.
Johnson is referring to South Vietnam’s autocratic leader Ngo Dinh Diem, who was arrested and assassinated in 1963 after a US-backed coup in the country during the start of US involvement in the country.
Johnson’s involvement in the assassination has long been a topic of speculation and conspiracy theories, so the revelations that the Soviets thought it was a possibility is especially interesting. Of course, there’s no proof, but without the full mass of documents, we can never really know the whole truth of what happened that fateful day.
Source: New York Post