BOSTON (CBS) – “Stay tuned for updates.” Those were the words scrawled across the National Archives website before the government released partial records from the Kennedy assassination file.
Kennedy historian Thomas Whalen was among those repeatedly hitting refresh.
“Given not just the domestic attention to this but the international attention, there’s just going to be too many people wanting to see these documents,” he said. “I think the National Archives site won’t be prepared for that.”
On Thursday night, President Trump blocked some of the documents from being released after the CIA and FBI asked to keep some information secret. Trump placed those files under a six-month review.
If the idea of poring over thousands of FBI and CIA files on the John F. Kennedy assassination investigation seems daunting, Whalen has some advice.
1) What you see may not be factual. Investigators documented countless rumors and speculative leads at the time.
2) The most interesting information will likely be buried, and may even contain code words.
3) Look for anything to do with Cuba and/or Lee Harvey Oswald’s trip to Mexico City before the assassination.
“Was Oswald getting instructions? Was he getting material aid in carrying out this assassination,” said Whalen. “Given how relations are not good now with Russia or Cuba, that could cause even today some international ramifications.”
At the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library in Boston, visitors were eager to find out what’s in the documents.
“To think there could be a controversy around his death. It would be devastating,” said Julie Johnson, who was visiting from Atlanta.
“I think we all have our own assumptions,” added Ina Hoffman visiting from Salem. “It could be very difficult.”