Excerpts from "the first rough draft of history" as reported in The Washington Post on this date in the 20th century.
The Warren Commission's conclusion that Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone in the assassination of President Kennedy did not satisfy many critics who were convinced that the murder was part of a larger conspiracy. The clamor for further investigation was answered with the formation of a special committee of the U.S. House of Representatives, which concluded in 1978 that Kennedy was probably the victim of a wider plot. Other authorities, including the National Research Council, disagreed, however, and the issue remains controversial. An excerpt from The Post of Sept. 28, 1964:
Lee Harvey Oswald, and he alone, assassinated President John F. Kennedy.He was not involved in any conspiracy, foreign or domestic, to murder the President.
These are the central conclusions of the President's Commission on the Assassination of President John F. Kennedy, headed by Chief Justice Earl Warren. The unanimous report of the seven-man group, the result of nearly ten months of investigation, was made public last night in a 912-page document.
The massive and exhaustive report by one of the most distinguished groups in American history also:
Criticized the Federal Bureau of Investigation for taking "an unduly restrictive view of its responsibilities in preventive intelligence work prior to the assassination" and for lack of alertness in considering Oswald "a potential threat to the safety of the President."
Criticized the Secret Service for having insufficient trained personnel in its protective research work, for failing to recognize the necessity of identifying sources of danger to the President other than direct threats, for "deficient" advance preparations for the President's fatal trip to Dallas and for other shortcomings.
Criticized the Secret Service for "insufficient liaison and coordination of information" with the FBI and other Federal agencies.
Said the State Department followed the law in its relations with Oswald but should have procedures "for the better dissemination of information" about such defectors as Oswald returning to the United States from the Soviet Union.
Criticized the Dallas Police Department for publicizing unchecked information which "provided much of the basis for the myths and rumors" about the assassination, for failing to control the swarm of newsmen and for failing to move Oswald in secret from one cell to another. These two latter failures were "the major causes" leading to Oswald's murder by night club owner Jack Ruby.
Declared that press, radio and television "must share responsibility for the failure of law enforcement" in Oswald's murder by their ignoring of police orders. The Commission found "a regrettable lack of self-discipline by the newsmen."