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Documents Still Classified


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A possible ground for research would be to make new requests for documents previously classified or heavily redacted.

For instance, I find this reference in one of weberman's nodules:

On November 27, 1963, Sam Papich telephonically provided the CIA information on Ruth Paine in response to a CIA teletype. The last line of the document that reviewed the information of Sam Papich read, "With respect to the station wagon in which she transported the OSWALDS, he advised (deleted - document ends)." [CIA 1534-1105 rel. 5.18.82]

What was deleted? Why?

I also understand that the HSCA testimony of William Seymour is still classified.

Why?

Can we use this thread to compile documents that are either still classified or redacted?

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That I know of even the 201 files are released. I wished when I went down to NARA I had the time to ask about them. It is enough to get though one full folder of papers in one day.

I don't even know what is in those files that were released last December. Anyone care to tell what they know about them so far and shed some light on this subject.

I know those files were not to have existed at one time and now they are all out.

I do know I was showed in books of how much materials JFK in the NARA is and was told in realitity there isn't that much. I thought it was a lot so far from what I have seen.

Also, from what I have been told there isn't to be any more classified documents? I maybe wrong though. Maybe they don't have the computers up to all that is out is another possability.

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A possible ground for research would be to make new requests for documents previously classified or heavily redacted.

For instance, I find this reference in one of Weberman's nodules:

On November 27, 1963, Sam Papich telephonically provided the CIA information on Ruth Paine in response to a CIA teletype. The last line of the document that reviewed the information of Sam Papich read, "With respect to the station wagon in which she transported the OSWALDS, he advised (deleted - document ends)." [CIA 1534-1105 rel. 5.18.82]

What was deleted?  Why?

I also understand that the HSCA testimony of William Seymour is still classified.

Why?

Can we use this thread to compile documents that are either still classified or redacted?

Tim:

A possible reason why JFK material is still classified is because whenever anything is declassified, it points to a conspiracy. For example the ARRB looked into the possibility of missing autopsy photographs taken on the night of November 22, 1963. According to the chief autopsy photographer, John Stringer, in his ARRB testimony, there are some views that were taken that are now missing. ( ARRB deposition of John Stringer, July 16, 1996, p. 133) However, Stringer signed an affidavit dated 11/22/63 which stated, "To my personal knowledge, this is the total amount of film exposed on this occasion." (ARRB Exhibit MD 78)

Jeremy Gunn of the ARRB, who was questioning Stringer( ARRB deposition of John Stringer, July 16, 1996, pp 136-137) about this sworn affidavit had the following exchange with him:

Gunn: "Do you see the phrase, next to last sentence, of the document---that I'll read to you: 'To my personal knowledge this is the total amount of film exposed on this occasion.' Do you see that?"

Stringer: "Yes."

Gunn: "Is it your understanding that that statement is incorrect?"

Stringer: "Well, yes."

Gunn: "When you signed this document, Exhibit 78, were you intending to either agree or disagree with the conclusion reached in the second to last - next to last sentence?"

Stringer: "I told him that I disagreed with him, but they said, 'Sign it.'"

Gunn: "And who is 'they' who said, 'Sign it.'?

Stringer: "Captain Stover."

Later in the interview:

Stringer: "You don't object to things."

Gunn: "Some people do."

Stringer: "But they don't last long." (Stringer ARRB testimony, p 155)

Assistant autopsy photographer, Floyd Riebe, also signed the false affidavit which was exposed by the ARRB. Here is what Riebe simply said"

Riebe: "We was shown this and told to sign it and that was it." (ARRB deposition of Floyd Riebe, May 7, 1997, p. 53) (He also added that the affidavit was incorrect, p. 54 of his deposition).

Now, couple this with HSCA Chief Counsel G. Robert Blakey admitting that the autopsy photographs have never been authenticated ( Memorandum for File written by Doug Horne for the JFK Review Board, titled, "Unanswered Questions Raised by the HSCA's Analysis and Conclusions Regarding the Camera Identified by the Navy and the Department of Defense as the Camera Used at President Kennedy's Autopsy, p. 4)

What Blakey said in the memorandum cited above was,

"Our photographic experts have determined that this camera, or at least the particular lens and shutter to it, could not have been used to take JFK's autopsy pictures."

Autopsy photographers threatened into signing an affidavit they knew was false, and the Chief Counsel of the HSCA admitting that his Committee could not authenticate the autopsy photos it had in its possesssion......... no wonder they don't want to declassify anything, Tim.

Bill Cheslock

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From a post by Robert Charles-Dunne on the Albert Osborne thread started by Ron:

Moreover, the last time I visited NARA to check on Osborne documents pertinent to his purported Canadian background, I noted that all such papers were still withheld in full. That may have changed, as I've not checked back recently.

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Interesting, John.

What if a list of all such still classified documents were assembled and a "full court press" was undertaken to force their release?

Who is responsible at this time to make the decision whether to release the documents? I suspect in most cases it is the agency that generated the documents. But who decides (before judicial intervention) whether HSCA records should be released?

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Interesting, John.

What if a list of all such still classified documents were assembled and a "full court press" was undertaken to force their release?

Who is responsible at this time to make the decision whether to release the documents?  I suspect in most cases it is the agency that generated the documents.  But who decides (before judicial intervention) whether HSCA records should be released?

Hi Tim-

That's a great question. Generating a list of all such still classified documents, just as you suggest, and perhaps organizing them in a database such as MC Access, would be the first step.

Determining who within the government has the authority to release such documents is step two.

Step three: We get as many people as we can to write to their Congressman, write to their Senator, and write to this as yet undetermined person of authority with the list attached and demand that these docs be released.

I know this probably sounds naive and idealistic, but I think it's worth the effort. Although I have no idea how to begin generating such a list. Any suggestions there? The list would be the difficult part.

Once it's compiled, we can use it to generate support and get people to write. Maybe if enough people regularly bombard their elected officials with such a request, perhaps over time someone in a position of authority will address the situation. At the end of the day, those records belong to the People. They're ours. We own them. We pay for them to be kept locked away. OK, I know that's incredibly naive, but it just ticks me right off.

The government keeps re-opening these civil rights cases from the 60's, U.S. v. Cecil Price et al. ("Mississippi Burning" Trial) being the most recent. While I think that's a great thing, it angers me that the Kennedy murders and MLK's killing are still being ignored.

So, how would one go about compiling such a list? Any ideas?

Edited by Greg Wagner
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Interesting, John.

What if a list of all such still classified documents were assembled and a "full court press" was undertaken to force their release?

Who is responsible at this time to make the decision whether to release the documents?  I suspect in most cases it is the agency that generated the documents.  But who decides (before judicial intervention) whether HSCA records should be released?

Hi Tim-

That's a great question. Generating a list of all such still classified documents, just as you suggest, and perhaps organizing them in a database such as MC Access, would be the first step.

Determining who within the government has the authority to release such documents is step two.

Step three: We get as many people as we can to write to their Congressman, write to their Senator, and write to this as yet undetermined person of authority with the list attached and demand that these docs be released.

I know this probably sounds naive and idealistic, but I think it's worth the effort. Although I have no idea how to begin generating such a list. Any suggestions there? The list would be the difficult part.

Once it's compiled, we can use it to generate support and get people to write. Maybe if enough people regularly bombard their elected officials with such a request, perhaps over time someone in a position of authority will address the situation. At the end of the day, those records belong to the People. They're ours. We own them. We pay for them to be kept locked away. OK, I know that's incredibly naive, but it just ticks me right off.

The U.S. government keeps re-opening these civil rights cases from the 60's, U.S. v. Cecil Price et al. ("Mississippi Burning" Trial) being the most recent. While I think that's a great thing, it angers me that the Kennedy murders and MLK's killing are still being ignored.

So, how would one go about compiling such a list? Any ideas?

Greg,

I sympathise with your frustration. Regarding your suggestion, this is probably naive but couldn't you write to the Justice Department for example, and request such a list.

Regarding step 2, the situation in Australia is the declassification would be announced by the Attorney General (after recieving Cabinet approval, of course). So basically it's the Government of the day who decides what to declassify.

The real key, IMO, is to strenghen the provisions of the AARB to overide the National Security provisions in certain circumstances, this being the stumbling block for declassification. Tim would probably know better than me, but this would require an application to the Court, in the absence of a willing Government. If it could be shown that the classification was activated in the context of a National Security environment which is now defunct (which is true), then, barring Government interference, the case could be won, IMO.

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I should add that, like John, I believe that any documents released through declassification would not necessarily lead us to the conspirators. There's been so much time for incriminating documentation to be removed or falsified.

Hi Mark-

You're right in that there's certainly no smoking gun just waiting to be declassified. Still, who knows what possibilities we might be able to explore. Or eliminate. Declassification of the remaining documents certainly wouldn't answer all the questions or definitively solve the case. I guess it's more the principle of the thing: I feel entitled to to view those documents.

You hit upon a key point: If it could be shown that the classification was activated in the context of a threat to national security that no longer exists, then such an excuse for keeping the docs secret becomes unavailable. But I guess it comes down to who exactly would be making that determination.

What national security issues could still be relevant in 2005? Most of those involved are probably dead. The Cold War is over. The Soviet Union no longer exists. Communism, as a threat to capitalism, is very much dead. The only national security issue is that the truth would implicate elements of our federal government resulting in a Constitutional crisis, the implications of which would be staggering.

Edited by Greg Wagner
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I should add that, like John, I believe that any documents released through declassification would not necessarily lead us to the conspirators. There's been so much time for incriminating documentation to be removed or falsified.

Hi Mark-

You're right in that there's certainly no smoking gun just waiting to be declassified. Still, who knows what possibilities we might be able to explore. Or eliminate. Declassification of the remaining documents certainly wouldn't answer all the questions or definitively solve the case. I guess it's more the principle of the thing: I feel entitled to to view those documents.

You hit upon a key point: If it could be shown that the classification was activated in the context of a threat to national security that no longer exists, then such an excuse for keeping the docs secret becomes unavailable. But I guess it comes down to who exactly would be making that determination.

What national security issues could still be relevant in 2005? Most of those involved are probably dead. The Cold War is over. The Soviet Union no longer exists. Communism, as a threat to capitalism, is very much dead. The only national security issue is that the truth would implicate elements of our federal government resulting in a Constitutional crisis, the implications of which would be staggering.

Greg,

Agree. The current threats to U.S. National Security are different to those in 1963. It's no surprise that the Government whitewashed the assassination. Besides protecting the real assassins, it ensured there would be no widespread public examination of its' security agencies. At the height of a cold war, this would have been very unwise.

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TGratz wrote:

What if a list of all such still classified documents were assembled and a "full court press" was undertaken to force their release?

Who is responsible at this time to make the decision whether to release the documents? I suspect in most cases it is the agency that generated the documents. But who decides (before judicial intervention) whether HSCA records should be released?

____________

try contacting John Judge and/or Bill Kelly at COPA. I've heard, they're compiling/creating a archive of JFKassassination related material -- I suspect if anyone knows, they do!

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I believe that part of the ARRB's function was to go through all these documents and determine if they really should be withheld. While there are probably no smoking guns, judging by what info was released by the ARRB, there are likely to be some very interesting details regarding people's personal lives, and some new threads that might make people suspect government involvement. It was more than a coincidence that all the HSCA interviews where the witnesses recalled the wounds differently than in the autopsy photos were withheld until the ARRB ordered their release.

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