One national security veteran told me it is the most remarkable story he has seen in the mainstream media in the past 50 years. It appeared in The Washington Post online edition on Friday, headlined Kennedy, King, Malcolm X relatives and scholars seek new assassination probes.
Written by Tom Jackman, the story reported on the open letter on the assassinations of the 1960s that I reported on last Monday.
Joined by relatives of Robert F. Kennedy, the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X, a group of more than 60 authors and investigators have called for a new congressional investigation into the assassinations of the three men and President John F. Kennedy,
What is remarkable is that the story treats the subject of the assassinations of the 1960s with the sort of straightforward journalism that this subject has rarely received from major news organizations.
The story summarizes the issue fairly:
The 1960s assassinations have spawned conspiracy theories and claims of governmental misconduct for decades. In each case, local police, federal investigators and state and local judges have reaffirmed the findings that lone gunmen killed both Kennedys and King, and that the three men convicted of murder killed Malcolm X. But those official conclusions have left many unsatisfied.
Jackman reports new information that readers might not know.
“The one thing you can say,” Robert Kennedy Jr. said in a recent interview, “Sirhan Sirhan did not fire the shots that killed my father.”
Jacsman interviewed Robert Blakey, chief of the congressional JFK investigation in the 1970s, who signed the letter, and he explained why Blakey’s participation is significant.
Blakey, whose high-profile investigation of the King and John Kennedy assassinations in 1979 determined that Kennedy was the likely victim of a conspiracy, said he remains deeply interested in the role of the CIA in the JFK case. In fact, he has a federal Freedom of Information Act lawsuit pending against the agency. He said that the FBI had fully cooperated with his investigations, particularly into the King assassination in Memphis in April 1968 but that the CIA has refused to open all its files to this day.
“All I’d like to do is see the stuff the agency has on [John] Kennedy,” Blakey said Wednesday. “That’s all I want.”
He interviewed Karl Evanzz, author of a ground-breaking book on the assassination of Malcolm X who signed the statement.
Evanzz noted that after a blogger in 2011 exposed the identity of the man he alleged had fired the fatal shotgun blasts at Malcolm X, “the FBI refused to reopen its examination of the assassination, saying that it lacked the resources to do so, and that no federal law had been violated. That’s ludicrous.”
The subject of the assassinations has finally gotten the straightforward journalistic treatment it deserves. Hopefully, the Post story will be a signal to other in the mainstream media that there is a great deal still to be learned about these tragedies.