The CIA has documents showing that presidential assassin Lee Harvey Oswald was involved in an intelligence operation before the assassination of John F. Kennedy, a prominent reporter on the Kennedy assassination alleged Tuesday.
“We are talking about irrefutable proof of a CIA operation involving Lee Harvey Oswald,” said reporter Jefferson Morley.
Morley claimed that the CIA operation involving Oswald took place in the summer of 1963, three months before the assassination. The indictment by Morley, who has written extensively about the CIA in the 1960s, could shake up the Kennedy assassination story if it turns out to be true.
Kennedy investigators have long sought to investigate the extent of Oswald’s involvement with intelligence agencies, and whether that could reveal more about whether Oswald was the only person involved in Kennedy’s death. Despite decades of congressional investigations and independent inspectors, the CIA has never revealed any relationship to Oswald.
“This is an extraordinarily serious claim and has profound implications for official history,” Morley said.
Morley claimed that Oswald, a former Marine who defected to the Soviet Union before returning to the United States as a supporter of Cuban communist leader Fidel Castro, was involved in a CIA operation leading up to the assassination aimed at discrediting Castro’s American supporters. . Morley’s allegations centered on files created by the now-deceased CIA agent George Joannides, who was involved with anti-Castro exile groups. Morley said 44 documents in the Joannides file are still in the CIA’s possession and could shed new light on the alleged operation.
“Nobody outside of the CIA was the wiser,” Morley said of the effort, which he said involved working to promote Oswald as a deranged pro-Castro figure.
Morley’s claim, a former Washington Post reporter, came to a press conference for Kennedy assassination investigators that includes a sitting federal judge. The event was organized by the Mary Ferrell Foundation, a nonprofit archive of materials on the Kennedy assassination. The group says the release of new documents from the CIA and other federal agencies could shed new light on Oswald’s alleged ties to intelligence agencies before Kennedy’s death.
The news conference comes ahead of a deadline set next week by President Joe Biden for the CIA and FBI to release all documents related to the assassination. It is not yet clear if the agencies will request an extension of that deadline.
Judge John R. Tunheim, a federal judge in Minnesota, said it was time for the CIA to release the remaining documents. Tunheim previously served on the Murder Records Review Board, which handled the release of murder-related files.
“It is time to publish all the files,” Tunheim said.