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Boren Issues Call for Release of Kennedy Assassination Papers

January 22, 1992| From Reuters

WASHINGTON — Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman David L. Boren said Tuesday that all government papers on President John F. Kennedy's assassination should be opened to clear the air on whether federal agencies were involved.

The Oklahoma Democrat is the latest legislator to say the documents should be opened because of the Oliver Stone movie "JFK," which postulates that federal agencies conspired to kill Kennedy in 1963 so that he could not end the Vietnam War.

Boren said all government documents, including those now classified, should be opened to legitimate historians. He said his committee will conduct a study on how this could be done.

"I have no information or knowledge which would lead me to believe that our government agencies were involved in any kind of plot in relation to the death of President Kennedy," Boren said in a statement. "But it is time to find an appropriate way to clear the air."

Rep. Louis Stokes (D-Ohio), who was chairman of a 1979 House panel that investigated the assassination, said last week he was exploring the possibility of having the House open files sealed after that inquiry.

The House investigation concluded that Lee Harvey Oswald fired the shots that killed Kennedy in Dallas. It concluded that there was no government or Cuban conspiracy to kill Kennedy but said it could not rule out a conspiracy by criminal gangsters.

The National Archives has said about 2% of the documents collected by the official Warren Commission investigation in 1964 remain classified. It said papers not already published in a voluminous House investigation report are sealed only because of a House rule that seals all such unpublished papers for 30 years.

Stokes said he was confident the sealed papers would reveal no significant new information on Kennedy's assassination.

Rep. Henry B. Gonzalez (D-Tex.), who rode in the motorcade in Dallas on the day Kennedy was shot, has said he will soon introduce legislation to allow the records to be released. Rep. Robert K. Dornan (R-Garden Grove) also plans to introduce a bill next week to open Congress' sealed files on the assassination. Other members of Congress have endorsed the unsealing, including Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.), brother of the slain President.

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