2 JFK assassination plots that are often forgotten

From New America Media:

“Before President Kennedy’s assassination, the Secret Service had credible evidence that a gunman would attempt to kill the President either in Chicago or Miami, Bolden said.

Abe Bolden

“The Chicago office of the Secret Service never acted on the threats, Bolden said.

“After President Kennedy’s assassination, the information was rewritten to show that there was a threat to President Lyndon Johnson, who succeeded President Kennedy.”

Bolden, who was 29 and idealistic, went public with his concern that the Secret Service did not adequately protect President Kennedy. He thought the truth would win out, but bureaucracy didn’t seek the truth; it sought to protect itself.

via New Book Explores Racism and the U.S. Secret Service – New America Media.

107 thoughts on “2 JFK assassination plots that are often forgotten”

  1. For those interested, following are links to news stories pertaining to known plots or threats to JFK:

    Plot to kill JFK foiled three years before his assassination http://shar.es/13CSrb via @sharethis

    Ireland Knew of Threats to Kennedy in 1963 Trip – New York Times: http://nyti.ms/1bliKSf

    Eerie links between JFK’s Tampa visit and Dallas death | wtsp.com http://bit.ly/1qqLHzn via @WTSP10News

    Exclusive: JFK Death Threat Note From Nov. 1963 In Miami Revealed For 1st Time « CBS Miami http://cbsloc.al/1IJFA4A


    ABC News: JFK Murder Plots – The Omen in Chicago http://abc7chicago.com/archive/9315215/

    *This wire release links Joseph Milteer and Carlos Marcello to funding the hit on MLK – New FBI Files Say White Supremacists Paid For Martin Luther King’s Assassination http://www.mmdnewswire.com/martin-luther-king-4864.html#.VIsiK7-zcqI.twitter

  2. Charles R. Drago

    The Chicago Plot: A Hypothesis

    RESOLVED: The alleged Chicago plot to assassinate JFK never was meant to result in an actual attack.

    Rather, it was a fictive construct designed as the Dallas conspiracy’s doppelganger.

    The objectives of its planners — the highest level Facilitators of the Dallas plot — were to:

    A. Explain the anticipated pre-assassination leaks of Dallas plot details as cases of mistaken identify of location;

    B. Foil the Chicago “plot” at the last minute — close to the timed Dallas attack — and thus provide a plausible excuse for planned enhanced Dallas security to be relaxed;*

    C. Support the Dallas cover-up by misdirecting honest investigations of the real assassination through the imposition of the confusion, complexity, and cognitive dissonance associated with the classic doppelganger gambit.

    *When advance man Martin Underwood told JFK about disturbing reports [of looming, serious assassination attempts], the President merely said, “Marty, you worry about me too much” (indeed, JFK told San Antonio Congressman Henry Gonzalez on 11/21/63: “The Secret Service told me that they have taken care of everything. There’s nothing to worry about”).


  3. Shades of the Education Forum. Dave and his mentor tag teaming DiEugenio. Expect long distracting posts by dave and a few factoids from the political/historical/global warming representative of Marquette, for which he’s been reprimanded before but not in a long time (I.E. they approve of and support or don’t care about). BTW if nothing happens the forum is shutting down at the end of July, sad because it’s still informative.
    FREEINGTHEFILES might shed some light on the forgotten plots. If they freed all of them. The 7 MOST WANTED would be a nice start.

    1. Get your “forum facts” straight, Ronnie. McAdams doesn’t post at The Education Forum. He is listed as a member (joining in August 2004), but he’s made a grand total of one post in those ten years. Some “tag teaming”, huh?


          Dave, how can you deny you are not one of mcadams minions?


          Because I’m not. Simple as that.

          I’m not anyone’s “minion”.

          The reason my words sound a whole lot like Professor McAdams’ is because we both happen to think along the same lines regarding the JFK assassination and Oswald’s obvious guilt.

          If “like-mindedness” = “minion”, then I can respond by saying that thousands of CTers are the minions of Mark Lane and Jim Garrison, etc.

  4. DVP: “There’s nothing absurd about the idea that Vallee and Oswald, independent of each other, thought about killing the President with a rifle from a tall building.”


    You left out, within three weeks of each other.

    Yo also left out, they had the same profile, Marines, working with Cubans,alleged misfits..

    And Milteer was actually talking about a conspiracy with someone as the patsy Dave. He never named Oswald.

    Pity poor Jean if she needs your help. Maybe she doesn’t know about me and you debating Bugliosi over at Spartacus. You should tell her about it.

    1. Have you given up trying to defend the “plot” of four shooters, and the “Lee” code name, with our boy Lee Oswald having “blown the whistle” on the “plot?”

      Do you think Lee Oswald was actually part of, or knew anything about, a Chicago plot?

    2. Here again we have the incredibly stupid plotters rearing their ugly (and brainless) heads once again. Per the vivid imaginations of conspiracy theorists like Jim DiEugenio, the plotters utilized “patsies” in different cities that have identical type backgrounds (right down to their “Marine” and “Cuban” affiliations), so that crackerjack researchers like Jimmy D. will obviously be able to tell that the Chicago and Dallas “plots” are linked and were constructed by the same unknown “they” that we keep hearing the conspiracists ramble on about (CIA?).

      Brilliant planning, Jim. (But the Chicago “plot” was never supposed to come to the surface, was it? Maybe that’s the excuse Jim will use to combat my last point above.)

      And also don’t forget the utter brilliance being displayed by the bad guys when they also allegedly arranged for a “4-man hit team” in Chicago (in order to somehow pin the whole nine yards on just ONE lone patsy named Thomas Vallee), and then they orchestrated another MULTI-ASSASSIN murder plot within the framework of yet another “Frame The Lone Patsy” (Oswald) plan in Dallas, Texas, twenty days later.

      Incredibly, people like James DiEugenio have actually fallen for such tommyrot, despite the fact that every scrap of physical evidence in the whole JFK case is screaming “It was Oswald alone”.

      So, either Jim’s plotters were incredibly lucky when all of the “non-Oswald” evidence just disappeared into a puff of smoke on 11/22/63,


      Various law enforcement agencies (DPD, FBI, Sheriff’s office, Secret Service, etc.) decided to immediately join ranks with the plotters who were supposedly setting up Oswald IN ADVANCE of the assassination, with those law agencies deep-sixing every last scrap of evidence pointing to any shooters other than Lee Harvey Oswald.

      In other words, in James DiEugenio’s strange world of conspiracy, it was “The World vs. Patsy Oswald”.

      1. My, DVP, you are excitable, aren’t you. That’“Frame The Lone Patsy” (Oswald) plan in Dallas, Texas, twenty days later’ seemed to have worked quite well, now didn’t it? You bought it.

        By the way, using all caps is bad form.

        1. Oswald wasn’t framed, Ken. Oswald was guilty. Just as all the evidence indicates.

          If the conspiracy theorists insist on tossing all of that evidence in the trash can, that’s their problem.

          But the evidence is still going to be there, proving Oswald’s guilt in both the JFK and Tippit murders, regardless of what any conspiracist believes.

          1. Face it, without the backyard photos, the badly rusted Carcano, and the Tippit-scene wallet, no one would have have ever thought to tie Oswald to the JFK and Tippit killings.

            The items in question are hardly “evidence.” They were never offered as evidence in an trial. Never tested in an adversary proceeding. Never considered by an impartial jury.

            You say Oswald was guilty. That’s an easy thing to do. It’s also false. He died an innocent man.

          2. JONATHAN SAID:

            You say Oswald was guilty. That’s an easy thing to do. It’s also false. He died an innocent man.

            DAVID VON PEIN SAID:

            Spoken like a true-blue Anybody-But-Oswald Internet conspiracy theorist. I.E., a person also willing to just toss in the trash all of the “It Was Oswald” witnesses at or near the Tippit murder scene too.

            And Jonathan is also more than happy to just toss the 4 bullet shells found on 10th Street in the trash as well, even though all 4 are tied directly to the gun Oswald had in his own hands just 35 minutes after Tippit was shot (with 2 of those 4 shells never going through J.M. Poe’s hands).

            The persistent “It’s All Fake” mantra repeated by CTers is a very tiresome mantra indeed. Not to mention, a really silly thing to believe.

  5. Plus, I agree with Jean Davison regarding the “Lee” code name. There are people who actually think such a “code name” would have been used by Lee Harvey Oswald? A “code name” that includes the REAL first name of the person? That sounds kind of crazy to me.

    1. It wasn’t used by LHO.

      It was used internally by certain FBI agents or staff members, informally albeit a departure from protocol.

      1. Gerry,

        Please tell me, what evidence is there that the code name “Lee” was “used internally by certain FBI agents or staff members”?

        1. I defer to Edwin Black and his unnamed sources who were FBI insiders, if I understand his article right.

          1. Gerry,

            If you’ll look again, Black gave no source at all for the supposed “informant code named Lee” or for the alleged 4-man assassination team. The unidentified FBI source said nothing like that.

        2. Jean, from Jim’s earlier link Mr. Black’s credentials seem impeccable. Maintaining the confidentiality of a source is an admirable trait if the source is otherwise believable, a commitment to do so has been made, and more especially if the source would be endangered by revealing it.
          Who brought “Lee” into the scenario is not as important as the 4 shooters as who they were and why 2 were caught with no record of their names.

          1. Ronnie,

            Even someone with “impeccable credentials”
            can be wrong. Why believe anything without seeing the evidence for it for yourself?

            As I understand it, Edwin Black’s only known source was Abraham Bolden, who told one story to the HSCA but a quite different version later in his book, where there were no arrests and no specific threat against Kennedy, just a landlady reporting finding two rifles with scopes. (Click on page 55 here):


            HSCA version, last 3 paragraphs:

            Without Bolden’s original story, there doesn’t seem to be any evidence whatsoever that these 2 men were arrested in Chicago.

  6. Did you read the article? If so, when did you read it? You did the same thing with the “lee ” angle and someone had to quote back the article to you.

    Do I now have to quote back to you the whole story he reveals in that long front page essay, which took him nine months to write?

    Let me add one last point before I leave this thread.

    If we are to take Bugliosi, McAdams and Jean at face value, this is what they want us to think:

    Two men who had the same profile, Oswald and Vallee, former Marines,who used to train and interact with Cuban exiles just months before, just happened to think up the same way of killing JFK– in a motorcade with a rifle–from a distance. And they had this same idea within three weeks of each other.

    As Mark Lane once said, quoting Zola I think: if we continue to accept absurdities, then we we create tragedy.

    Which is what has happened with this case.

    1. There’s nothing absurd about the idea that Vallee and Oswald, independent of each other, thought about killing the President with a rifle from a tall building.

      That type of action, in fact, would probably be one of the BEST ways for any potential assassin to achieve his goal of killing President Kennedy, who was always riding around in an open-top car.

      And in Oswald’s case, the “tall building” was something that was ready-made and totally available to him (as a TSBD worker) at the time of JFK’s visit to Dallas. So, naturally, Oswald would be thinking along those lines. It was a made-to-order situation for him.

      And nothing except ordinary garden-variety luck and happenstance placed Lee Oswald in that building on 11/22/63, and no conspiracy theorist has ever come close to proving that anyone (Ruth Paine or otherwise) “planted” Oswald in the Depository prior to the assassination.

      Plus, the “From an office building with a rifle” scenario was such a “generic” type of assassination plan that we’ve even got President Kennedy HIMSELF suggesting that very idea to Ken O’Donnell in Fort Worth on the very morning JFK was killed.

      Plus, Joseph Milteer talked about a possible assassination plot in those exact same type of generic “tall building with a rifle” terms in his bugged conversation with William Somersett.

      But it couldn’t be more obvious that Milteer was merely blowing smoke and had no first-hand knowledge of any type of ACTUAL organizational plan to assassinate the President.

      Milteer wasn’t even sure WHERE such an attempt was supposed to be made on the President’s life. He suggested Miami AND Washington, D.C. (from a point across the street from the White House yet!). So Milteer’s rantings are pretty much worthless.

      From Vincent Bugliosi’s “Reclaiming History” (page 765 of Endnotes)….

      “[Lamar] Waldron’s allegation that the mob intended to kill Kennedy in Chicago falls flat on its face because it is 100 percent devoid of any evidence to substantiate it.

      To make things worse, even the existence of the alleged four men is seriously in doubt. As indicated in a previous endnote, the HSCA could find no evidence to support Bolden’s story.

      If possible, Waldron gets even more ridiculous with respect to Tampa. Again, he claims, without offering any evidence to support his position, that Marcello, Trafficante, and Roselli were determined to kill Kennedy in Tampa.

      Unbelievably, he offers, as support (which it is not, actually going in the opposite direction), a small article in the Tampa Tribune on November 23, 1963, the day after the assassination, that three people had threatened to kill Kennedy when he came to Tampa.” — VB

    2. Surely you understand the difference between an assertion or claim and actual evidence, don’t you, Jim?

      Once again you’ve ducked the question, imo. If anyone has ever presented any *evidence* of a 4-man assassination team in Chicago or of an FBI informant called “Lee,” what is it? Isn’t this just an allegation that has never been substantiated?

  7. The suggestion that I’ve “smeared” Edwin Black is ridiculous. I don’t believe that he made anything up. He may have an excellent reputation, but any writer’s claim is either supported by the evidence or it isn’t.

    Again, Jim, if Black found corroboration for Bolden’s story of a 4-man assassination team, what is that corroboration? Attacking me can’t disguise the fact that you’ve repeatedly evaded that question.

  8. One more point, to see the kind of work Black does, please take the time to watch and listen to this lecture on a very difficult and pertinent subject, the uses and abuses of the world’s supply of petroleum.


    This is the kind of careful and tough digging the man does. To smear him as a Stephen Glass kind of confabulator, that is just irresponsible. And a little outrageous.

    Especially when both Black and Bolden revealed a cover up about Chicago.

  9. By the way, what these two are doing is exactly what Bugliosi does in his book.

    He says, well there’s Vallee,but everything else Bolden talked about and tried to tell the Warren Commission about, and then everything that Black spent nine months digging up through documents and shoe leather somehow, Black just made that all up and Bolden was somehow mistaken about why he was sent back to Chicago and set up. And as I said, to use the HSCA against Black, that is just unconscionable. As I said, can Jean really be that wet behind the ears? I have a heard swallowing that.

    Now, with all that in mind, let us note something that neither McAdams nor Jean wants to bring into the thread. Here is the link to Black’s web site:


    Go ahead and look at all the awards, honors, distinctions and reliable accolades that this investigator/author has had bestowed up on him in the last 30 odd years. Also, please note the subject matter he has addressed. Very controversial and sensitive materials. To emerge as unscathed as he has in those fields is amazing.

    Now, since they are the ones bringing this up, it is fair to ask if either one of them has this kind of track record? If so, I have never seen anything like it.

    But yet, they feel free to question Black’s methods and honesty? A guy with his illustrious status?

    Please. Please. If you are going to do that, then go back and do what he did. Do the ground work, do the door knocking. Don’t be like VInce Bugliosi and never leave your office but then tell us that hey, I wasn’t there, but Chicago did not happen, and Clinton-Jackson did not happen, and Oswald was in Mexico City, and Banister never met Oswald etc etc.

    Because other people have done the work and they know better. So these kinds of desktop denials do not ring true light of that. LIke Bugliosi, they come off as part of a conclusion driven office agenda from people who don’t know what a field investigation is. Let alone how to do one.

    1. Jim,

      You seem to be evading a couple of direct challenges from Jean Davison.

      You could move the discussion along by giving a direct answer to the following:

      1. What is the evidence of a “plot” involving four people?

      2. What is the evidence that an informant named “Lee” blew the whistle on any plot?

      3. What is the evidence that “Lee” was our boy Lee Harvey Oswald?

      1. .John/Jean,

        I believe that Edwin Black mentions unnamed or unofficial sources within the FBI itself.

        Like Mr. DiEugenio reminds us, Mr. Black’s journalistic integrity and credentials are sound.

        The informant ‘nicknamed’ “Lee” appears to be an FBI internal reference only.

        The ‘intro’ site 23November1963.org discusses this informant issue in remarkable detail with various documentary links, including Rankin’s internal memo.


        To me, and based on the circumstantial evidence raised by that memo, it doesn’t debunk the possibility that Lee Harvey Oswald was an undercover FBI informant or CIA agent solely based on the final paragraph summarily dismissing reporter Hudkins’ reliability (what about Mr. Alexander, D.A. Wade’s assistant who also was a source of information?).

      2. H.P. Albarelli Jr.

        As an objective researcher and writer, I’d also like to know the answers to these questions. Additionally, people are writing that Oswald and Vallee were similar in the way that they both trained Cubans for counterinsurgency warfare. Perhaps I missed something, but where is the evidence that Oswald did this? Indeed, regarding Vallee’s training credentials, we only have his word that he performed such at a military base unknown for its use with Cuban trainees. Sure, Oswald offered his Marine training manual to Cubans in New Orleans, but this hardly constitutes training itself. At any rate, I see no reason for attacking Ms. Davison or others for asking hard and intelligent questions.

  10. IMHO, Jeff should have never written a headline “2 JFK assassination plots that are often forgotten.”

    This site is supposedly “JFK Facts.” But the evidence of any plot (as opposed to merely one mentally unstable guy) is so thin as to be nonexistent.

    1. Do you actually suppose you add to your credibility with comments such as this? Given the existence of that tape recording of Joseph Milteer, your “so thin as to be nonexistent” claim is absurd.

      Borderline trollery.

      1. Given the existence of that tape recording of Joseph Milteer, your “so thin as to be nonexistent” claim is absurd.

        In the first place, Milteer was talking about Miami, and not Chicago and not Dallas.

        In the second place, he was merely a blow-hard who didn’t know anything.

        Conspiracy books are very selective in recounting his statements. At the following link, you’ll find some information that the conspiracy books omit.


        1. “In the first place, Milteer was talking about Miami, and not Chicago and not Dallas.”

          Even if you’re correct about this, so what? The very existence of this recording is convincing proof that a plot was in the works to murder the President. Whether said plot had gotten beyond the talking stage or was brought to fruition is another matter. However, those who choose to be willfully blind will never fail to not see what they don’t want to.

          “In the second place, he was merely a blow-hard who didn’t know anything.”

          Yes, and Ruby Oswald were both psycho nobody loners whom no one would ever have entrusted with the task of killing anybody (in spite of the fact that if lone nut buffs are correct that they acted alone and independently of each other their success proves that they were exactly the sort of person you’d want to entrust that job to!).

          You can stop leaving links to your website in replies to my comments. I won’t follow them. I’ve check out your site thoroughly on other occasions, and am not willing to contribute to increasing the number of visits to it. I know you won’t, but I just thought I’d mention that.

          1. The very existence of this recording is convincing proof that a plot was in the works to murder the President.

            No, it’s not. Sommerset set Milteer up to outline a plot by asking “Well, how in the hell do you figure would be the best way to get him?.”

            Milteer goes on to outline an entirely generic scenerio — one shooter in a tall building.

            Note: no “triangulation of crossfire.” Just a lone shooter in a building.

            That’s like the scenario JFK imagined.

            Then you have the nonsense about shooting Kennedy on the veranda of the White House.

          2. @ .John,

            Did he say in that tape that the plot ‘is in the works’ (IIRC)?

            A hypothetical scenario would not be ‘in the works’.

          3. A “generic scenario” that apparently just happened to pop into his head because he was the kind of guy who passed the time idly thinking ways to assassinate people.

            It’s evident from his remark that he’d heard talk about this and believed people were actively working on it.

      1. Obviously, I disagree, but even if you believe in some sort of plot, Jeff should not have written a headline that treated the “Chicago plot” as a fact.

        1. If you can’t beat someone on the facts, just subject them to trivial criticism. Over. And Over. And over. Ad nauseum.

        2. With respect Professor, JFK Facts also investigates theories, leads or stories:

          About JFK Facts

          We will fact-check news stories, blogs, YouTube videos, books, and movies about the JFK assassination with the goal of dispelling confusion and establishing an accurate historical record.

        3. I thought the arrest of Vallee was a fact. That he worked in a multi story building on a slow turn on the parade route are facts. That he had a rifle and ammunition in his car when arrested and he had been diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic (in the right setting easily portrayed a a lone nut) were all facts. The fact the trip was canceled the morning of it after his arrest. Who were they worried about then?

          1. Ronnie,

            The arrest of Vallee is well-documented, but there’s evidently no record of a separate 4-man rifle team. Without some evidence, why believe it?

            No author’s assertion can establish any fact — it takes evidence to do that.

            I’m not sure where Vallee worked, but according to the HSCA he reportedly asked for the day off from his job on Nov. 2, when JFK was supposed to be in Chicago.


          2. Well Jean to me the Vallee facts only add credence to Bolden’s bigger picture. As does the similarity of the plots.
            The timing of his recall for questioning and ultimate arrest is suspicious in itself. In the middle of training in Washington where he tries to tell his story discreetly to authorities.
            His trial was a Travesty in the history of United States “Justice”.
            Assuming your familiar with some of the info from Palamara’s Survivors Guilt do you believe anybody in the SS would have come forward and said “oh yeah we arrested 2 of 4 potential snipers in Chicago a few days before dallas but the trip was canceled so we let em’ go. And wed forgot to get their names.”?

  11. Just a relevant notation. Pg 282 of “Echo From Dealy plaza”.
    “The National Archives responded as Follows: …9/16/94…RE: Status of Abraham Bolden citation request…”In searching for the information requested …I have run into many obstacles. The District Court…did a search for the file and could not find it.
    I then checked the National Archives…found the file was checked out
    August 21, 1973 and has never been returned.”

  12. The proven existence of a Chicago plot to murder President Kennedy would be highly significant. Did the Secret Service not admit to destroying the files on this subject in the 1990s? If there was a Chicago plot, and a similar one in Tampa, then the official version would almost certainly have to be expunged from history. As has been said, the Chicago plot appears to be eerily similar to Dallas in terms of a former Marine scapegoat, working in a high warehouse type building, overlooking the president’s route. I don’t think there has been enough information put forward to conclusively prove the Chicago plot took place though.

    On the question of the FBI informant ‘Lee’ being Lee Harvey Oswald: I would be extremely cautious and sceptical about this. I would be very surprised if an American intelligence agency used as a code word the first name of an informer/agent. It would be highly unprofessional to do this, into the realms of dangerously amateurish. I suppose stranger things have happened though.

    1. Yes, the SS destroyed their files on the assassination before the ARRB could get their paws on them.

      As Black said, both the FBI and Secret Service covered their asses for their stupidity or ineptitude.

      As for the use of the name ‘LEE’, he said it happened once in a great while.

  13. But Jonathan he was like O in other ways. He worked in a above ground level floor in a building JFK’s car passed under in a hard slow turn. He was paranoid or schizophrenic per a Military Psychiatrist. O was portrayed as an uneducated introverted lone nut (who was conversational at “White Russian” gatherings on politics). He helped train anti Castro Cubans. He would have made a great Patsy.
    No record of interrogation. Shades of O’s incarceration.
    To me the article adds confirmation to his book from many years before it. I don’t think he shaped his book around this article. Much else of his story is documented, this only helps affirm it.

    1. This is just silly.

      I mean, Edwin Black is one of the finest investigative reporters in the country. Period. Look at his career and all the honors he had bestowed upon him.

      His article, which took nine months to write, and in which he interviewed dozens of people, corroborates Bolden just about all the way. Period.

      Are you going to tell me that is just a coincidence? Nope.

      And are you then going to tell me that the overall designs of the two plots, which are almost the same, that is just a coincidence also?

      And the fact that Oswald was within this anti-Castro Cuban exile milieu and could have been the informant on both plots, for which there is circumstantial evidence, that is not at all ironic and intriguing?

      None of this is in Jean’s book. Not one iota. Which why, IMO, that book is the equivalent of a Model T Ford.

      To actually use the HSCA to discredit Black is more silliness. Anyone who has studied the HSCA, which I have, understands that there were certain limits to what Blakey was willing to do. And if you interview those investigators–as I have at length– you will find that out pretty fast. There were certain aspects of New Orleans which were off limits and were censored in the final report. The Chicago Plot was clearly too explosive for two reasons:

      1.) It clearly denotes that whoever was hunting JFK was doing it three weeks before he was actually killed with an architectural design that was similar, to the point that Chicago was almost a dress rehearsal, and

      2.) Oswald may have been the informant on both plots–which just about kills him as a suspect.

      Blakey was not going to go anywhere near that stuff. And Jean should know that.

      1. Jim, you write:

        “And are you then going to tell me that the overall designs of the two plots, which are almost the same, that is just a coincidence also?”

        Are the overall designs of the two plots the same? It seems to me they’re materially different.

        Oswald’s alleged JFK murder weapon was a rusted, cruddy, bolt-action rifle for which he supposedly had at most four rounds of ammunition. Vallee had a mechanically superior M-1 rifle and at least 750 rounds of ammunition when arrested by Chicago cops for making a turn without using a turn signal. Vallee was scooped up by the cops before any damage could be done to JFK. Vallee is said today to have been diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic. Oswald had no such diagnosis. Unlike Oswald, Vallee did not have a deeply murky history and connections.

        The four alleged shooters in Chicago, I’ve read, were allegedly armed with scoped semi-automatic rifles. They were rousted, to an extent at least, before any damage could be done to JFK.

        It appears to me from what I’ve read Chicago was a much less accommodating place for a presidential assassination than Dallas. The Chicago cops and S.S. agents were more on the ball. The Chicago perps were ID’d in advance. Strikes me Chicago was, if anything in relation to Dallas, a dry run.

      2. Jim,

        If the article “corroborates Bolden just about all the way,” could you please quote an example or two of this corroboration?

        For instance, could you tell me the source for the claim that there was an informant named “Lee”? Or anything else that clearly corroborates the 4-man rifle team story? That’s all I’m asking.

      3. Again, Jim, could you please provide some corroboration for the claim that an informant code-named “Lee” blew the whistle on a 4-man hit team in Chicago?

        You say that Black’s article “corroborates Bolden just about all the way,” but even Bolden’s own book doesn’t corroborate the details in that article. (Please see the link posted June 2 6:11pm.)

  14. The 1975 Edwin Black article adds little about Abe Bolden except that he took an inconclusive lie detector test.

    It resonates on the un-trustworthiness of certain Chicago cops and S.S. agents.

    The article makes clear Thomas Vallee was unlike Oswald. Vallee had a good rifle, had lots of ammunition, and had made pointed anti-Kennedy statements. But like Oswald, Vallee kept within the bounds of the law. He wasn’t a criminal.

    The four alleged Chicago shooters remain a mystery. Two were caught but there is no record of their interrogation. My guess is the four shooters and Vallee were part of a dry run aimed at testing reflexes and responses, which failed its purpose because of JFK’s need to be in the White House during and immediately following the Saigon coup.

  15. Here is that excellent article:


    Probably one of the very best pieces on the JFK conspiracy written in that decade. Ashamedly, it was ignored.

    The stuff Waldron and Hartmann wrote in their book was a mish mash. And then they got the footnotes wrong, which was very fishy as I note in Reclaiming Parkland.

    But Jim Douglass did some good work on the failed Chicago Plot. In fact, unlike Vincent Bugliosi, he actually went there and stood in the planned kill zone. The real remarkable thing about it, it how much it resembled the ultimate Dallas plot which succeeded.

    For instance, the patsy, in this case Vallee, was to be at work in a building floor elevated above the motorcade route. And the motorcade was just turning in front of the building where the ambush was planned.

    Like Oswald, Vallee was a former Marine who had trained with Cubans.

    Many think, because there is so much evidence to this effect, that the hit team in Dallas was likely Cuban exiles. This appears to be the prospective team in Chicago.

    In fact, they are so similar that if there was not a cover up in Chicago, its hard to think the SS could not have snuffed out Dallas in advance. I mean in three weeks they could not find a tall warehouse building with a former Marine working in it along the motorcade route where the car takes a hard turn?

    BTW, would it not be ironic if Oswald warned about both plots? Recall, the Walter telex.

  16. Jean:

    You cannot be serious.

    Black’s article is incredibly detailed about the Chicago Plot.

    And he begins the article with a bombshell: the tip off guy to the FBi was code named Lee.

    Maybe, just maybe, it was that guy you wrote a book about and in yet you could not find any evidence he was a FBI informant or a CIA agent provocateur. Was this info in it? Because it makes perfect sense if its Oswald.

    His article was so potent he ended up being tailed by the DIA.

    1. Of course I am serious, Jim. What evidence is there that a “tipoff guy to the FBI was code named Lee”? How do you know that’s true?

      Isn’t it unusual for an informant to be referred to by his real name, instead of something anonymous like “informant T-2”?

      1. The informant “Lee” has been something of a fly in the soup for me as well. The article offers an explanation , but it still seems a bit weak. Having said that, an FBI agent Coll seems to verify the whole affair in this passage:

        For an official response, we contacted the official Washington smoke screener, agent Thomas D. Coll, in charge of press relations. Coll at first refused to check our claim, denying that the FBI originated the Chicago conspiracy tip. I kept asking how he knew this for a fact without checking. He finally blurted out, “because I remember that case. Some people were picked up. And I’m telling you it wasn’t ours. That was strictly a Secret Service affair. The whole Soldiers Field matter was a Secret Service affair.” When pressed on his civic knowledge of the Chicago plot, Coll grunted, “you’ll get no more out of me. I’ve said as much as I’m going to on that subject. Get the rest from the Secret Service.”

      2. WHy don’t you ask Edwin Black that?

        Meantime, nice way to dodge the question I posed to you: namely what evidence is there in your book that Oswald was an FI informant or an agent provocateur?

        The way you slough off all that stuff in New Orleans is reminded me of Epstein or PJM.

        And you were just as bad on the Paines, who you depicted WC style as innocent Good Samaritans. Which was something not even RIchard Russell bought back in 1964.

      3. The article explains this anomaly on pages 20 & 21, which occurs ‘once in a great while’:

        An unofficial source of ours in the FBI explained why once in a great while non-numerical
        codes are assigned to informants. All Secret Service and FBI informants routinely receive a number code such as “834.” The Service or Bureau maintains an extensive file
        on each such informant, identifiable by number-code only. However, it’s not difficult for any federal intelligence agent to discover the identity of such an informant through a cross-index, which lists the number-coded informants and their true identities. This cross-index is supposed to be a secret.

        Therefore, once in a great while an informant is so highly placed, so vital or so vulnerable, he is assigned a non-numeral code. His identity is known only to his control in the Bureau or Service. Such was the case with an informant known only as “D,” whose classified testimony about Lee Harvey Oswald in the American Embassy in Mexico was only recently revealed through a Freedom of Information act suit.

        1. If the supposition is that a federal law enforcement officer can find out the name of an informant by cross referencing a code number with a name, within his office, that’s true. I seriously doubt that he’d have access to another office’s informant files, without making a request to someone in that office. If the supposition is that there is a central file that agents from different agencies or bureaus can access, no. Absolutely not. I still find it very difficult to believe that the FBI would have given an informant’s real name to another agency, without a very specific condition in place that would preclude public identification of that informant. It’s possible that “Lee” was just a tag that they gave him.

        2. My point is that, unlike the Vallee arrest which is well-documented, there doesn’t seem to be any actual evidence for an informant named “Lee” or for the rest of the “4-man team Chicago Plot.” Which is surprising if true, since so many people accept it as fact.

          The HSCA interviewed Martineau and the other Chicago agents and didn’t buy this story — it spoke of the “questionable authenticity” of Bolden’s account:

          Final Report, p. 232 and footnote 65 here:

          Black’s article gives no source for the informant named Lee, so far as I can tell. Douglass’ book repeats the claim — but footnotes Black.

          I’m beginning to think “informant Lee” is mythical, like the cab driver Darryl Click.
          If I’m wrong, guys, please show me why.

          1. Black refers to an ‘unofficial source of ours in the FBI’. Perhaps an unnamed person to protect their anonymity.

          2. Thanks, Gerry, but unless I missed it, the unofficial FBI source doesn’t corroborate anything (p. 30 of the article). He said that “once in a great while non-numerical” code names were used for informants in order to protect their identity, but the example he gave was an informant called “D” — not someone going by his real first name, which is really no “code” at all.

          3. Here’s a question I hope someone can answer.

            I searched for “rifles” in Abraham Bolden’s book online and was startled to find a different story than the one he told the HSCA.

            According to his book, the FBI called agent Martineau with a tip from a boarding house landlady who’d found two rifles with telescopic sights in one of her rooms. Four men were involved, two of them Hispanic — but nothing is said about a threat against JFK. Secret Service agents went to check it out but, says Bolden, they “botched the surveillance and lost the suspects.” The four men got away and “the investigation was abruptly terminated.”

            See pages 55-56 here:


            Years earlier Bolden reportedly told the HSCA that the tip came from an FBI teletype warning of a 4-man JFK assassination team, and that two of these men had been arrested. (Starts near the bottom of this page):


            Can anyone explain this apparent contradiction? Did Bolden’s story change, or what?

          4. @ Jean,

            ‘D’ was just one example besides ‘Lee’.

            Apparently, he can’t specifically quote his anonymous source.

      4. H.P. Albarelli Jr.

        Thinking out loud, in writing: I tend to agree with Jean’s line of thought here… the Chicago case is fascinating, but under-researched as expressed by subsequent published writings. And, if the elusive “Lee” who tipped off the FBI in Chicago was indeed the elusive Lee Harvey Oswald, or even “Lee Henry Oswald”, why didn’t “Lee” do the same in Dallas? and save the life of President Kennedy? Would not that make “perfect sense”?

        1. For all we know maybe he did and nobody listened this time. Somebody called the DPD early Sunday morning before he was assassinated and told them it would happen (for you young folks, this was before caller ID). Yet Ruby still got in and did the deed.

        2. It’s a fair question Mr. Albarelli.

          Maybe it ostensibly wasn’t to occur (if anything, a warning shot), but then Oswald the informant was framed.

          1. H.P. Albarelli Jr.

            Informant? I suppose first that should be established with evidence. And Oswald seemed to have no trouble finding the local FBI office. I think Oswald perhaps fancied himself a potential informant but had no clue as to how to become one, and that assumes he had something the bureau was interested in…the alleged ‘framing’ is even more problematic. I, for one, find it difficult to dwell in a house built out of sheer speculation.

          2. Mr. Albarelli,

            It isn’t sheer speculation. Circumstantial evidence.

            Unless the CIA/FBI releases all files, we can only infer, since being an informant is not a matter of common knowledge.

            Why did Hosty destroy that memo?

            Senator Schweiker who had access to classified documents said that Oswald had ‘fingerprints of intelligence’.

            I’m not the only one who has said that he possibly was an informant.

          3. Gerry,

            I see the La Fontaines’ claim that Oswald tipped off the FBI about an anti-Castro training camp, but what is the *evidence* that this happened?

          4. @ Jean,

            Fair question Jean.

            I have their book but it’s buried (until I set up my new JFK books library at home). The link I provided has their claim but is not footnoted. If I find the actual book, that claim may be on a detailed page (that linked page looks like a chapter summary or simply time line).

          5. H.P. Albarelli Jr.

            Gerry, no, you are not the only one, but you offer no *circumstantial evidence*, only more speculation.With all due respect, unreleased files constitute nothing in terms of *actual evidence*, unseen files are merely possible fodder for further speculation, and the speculation of other writers misses the mark of actual evidence. It’s fine to speculate, but not to confuse pondering with constituting facts.

  17. Jean Davison,

    Yes, you’ve missed a lot. Reread the article; Black cites multiple sources. Research memoirs of other SS agents who reference the plot. Talk to Mr. Bolden and assess his memory and credibility yourself. Talk to Edwin Black. Vince Palmara should be able to help you as well. Maybe even talk to former intelligence operatives who will confirm it for you. Forget about polygraphs and read Bolden’s court records demonstrating pervasive malfeasance in his own “trial”. Good luck in your efforts.

  18. The best corroboration for Bolden is Edwin Black’s landmark article from 1976 in the Chicago Reader.

    It is available online. It is an extraordinary piece of investigative journalism.

    And it backs up Bolden all the way.

    If I recall, Black had Bolden take a polygraph.

    1. Of a conspiracy in motion in Chicago ciorca 11/2/63 I’m not in doubt. I believe what Mr. Bolden has to say about that. Hhis being set up for criminal charges is what I’m skeptical about. The Chicago plot is curious. One wonders if it was real, or if it was a trial run to see how it played out, or whether it was intentionally crying wolf to desensitize the Secret Service. On the 18th there was a threat that didn’t materialize either, then two days later lightening finally struck. And the Secret service was not on its toes that day.

    2. Bolden did take a polygraph (assuming that he’s Black’s confidential source). It was inconclusive. He refused to retake the test, even though, according to Balck, the inconclusivesness was not centered around deception. The source (Bolden?) was too fearful of getting further involved.

    1. Having read Edwin Black’s article, I still don’t see any corroboration for Bolden’s account of a 4-man assassination team in Chicago.

      I know that a man named Vallee, who had a history of mental illness, was arrested in Chicago, but Bolden’s story didn’t include Vallee according to the HSCA — bottom of the page here:

      Although polygraphs aren’t infallible, Black says that Bolden’s results were considered “inconclusive” and that when he was asked to take a followup test, he declined. Unless I missed something, Black found a record for Vallee’s arrest but nothing that confirmed the 4-man team allegation — no statement from another agent or witness, no court or arrest record or anything else. I know that Black believes this story, but based on what *evidence*? Did I overlook something?

      Did author Douglass cite any source other than Bolden for this story of a 4-man team?

      1. A break came the next day, Thursday, October 31. A near north rooming house landlady telephoned the Chicago police with a tip. Four men were renting rooms, and in one of them, she observed four rifles with telescopic sights. In as much as she knew the president was coming to Chicago in two days, perhaps there was some threat here. Would the police look into it. The police immediately informed the Secret Service. Acting agent in charge of Maurice G. Martineau scooped up the message and made the connection. This was it.

        Later, he says that the plot was obviously neutralized or aborted.

        I doubt JFK’s Chicago trip was cancelled for some wild goose chase.

        In a crime involving a plot like this, the police don’t necessarily arrest or catch all the co-conspirators.

        Then there is this confounding problem:

        5), The government is covering up the facts. Specifically, the FBI and the Secret Service.
        Not because they were in on the plot. But because they botched the protection of the president and the investigation of his assassins. They are covering up their own stupidity. Their own ineptitude.

        1. Gerry,

          Your first quote is from the section of the article called “I. The Scenario,” which tells what supposedly happened. The author noted, “Don’t accept anything you read in the Scenario until you have read the Investigation of that information and the basis for our conclusions.”

          I’m still looking for the basis for that story–the four men with rifles, the tip from a landlady, Martineau getting involved.

          The author quotes a document in which Martineau seems to deny the story, saying:

          “… there might have been other arrests made that same day by Chicago Police Department officers on charges of ‘carrying a concealed weapon,’ but none of these would have related to protection of the President.”

          In your other quote the writer claims the 4-man plot was covered up, but the Vallee arrest wasn’t covered up — Black found evidence for it in the records he searched.

          According to the New York Times, JFK canceled the Chicago trip because of the crisis caused by the coup in South Vietnam the day before. (NYT, Nov.3,’63, p.1)

          1. I will quote the preamble to the Investigation section following the Scenario:

            Every word of the scenario is predicated on information gained from documents and interviews.

            Black was stonewalled from getting independent confirmation by former Secret Service or FBI agents (passing the buck or no comment statements). Also, documents and records had been destroyed for one reason or another.

            Black followed up on a lead about FBI agents investigating certain persons flying from Mexico City to Chicago 10 days after the assassination (with aliases including possibly for LHO), but the FBI superficially dropped the matter without going further. Too convenient.

            As for that NYT article, newspapers are not the Gospel.

            I don’t recall where else I saw or heard this, but another excuse for JFK’s Chicago trip cancellation was that he caught a bad cold.

    2. Thank you Mark (and further below Jim)for posting the link. I’d never read this EXCELLENT article.

  19. I believe that there was an attempt to be made on 11/2 in Chicago. I believe that Bolden told what he knew about it and was truthful. The Tampa attempt seems to be well documented in Waldron’s book, Ultimate Sacrifice. As to Bolden being being set up, I’m a bit skeptical. You need to read the appelate court’s decision on his case, especially in regard to the perjury. Perjury does not automatically end a prosecution. As to setting him up, I’d be interested in the mechanics of it as well as the mind set behind it. There were any number of ways to deal with Mr. Bolden besides setting him up on false criminal charges. To do so would have exposed the agents to blackmail at the least from the crooks they supposedly used to do the deed. And given the time frame involved, it’d be very difficult to arrange something like that quickly. And that assumes that the agents would have put their liberty and careers on the line for something that could have been handled far easier, and legally.

    1. You’re right about the need to read the appellate court’s opinion. It provides information about the Bolden case one doesn’t get, for example, from Thom Hartman’s writing on Bolden.

      My take on Bolden is this: He heard racist comments from S.S. agents. He was aware some S.S. agents drank while on duty. He was aware some S.S. agents did not like JFK.

      As to whether he solicited a bribe, a jury determined he did, based in part on incriminating statements he made to fellow S.S. agents once he came under suspicion of soliciting a bribe.

      1. I think the problem is that the set up allegation has never really been fully explored. Waldron seems to think that Sam DeStefano did it, with Richard Cain somewhere in the mix. Not sure why he believes that. I suppose that one would need to obtain and then wade through the trial transcript.

  20. James O'Neill


    I suggest you read James Douglass’ very fine book JFK and the Unspeakable. More detail there than anywhere else that I know.

  21. Has anyone found corroboration for his claim that he was framed or that the Secret Service had evidence of an upcoming assassination attempt in Miami or Chicago?

    I haven’t read his book, so I honestly don’t know. But I would like to hear the specifics he presented to support these claims.

    1. Yes, based on a call from “Lee” the Chicago police arrested 2 of 3 supposed shooters then let them go with no record of their names. The also arrested a patsy. A somewhat off his rocker former marine who worked in a building overlooking the parade route where it made a slow turn. He also had guns in his car when arrested.
      If I remember right Bolden’s accuser in the counterfeiting plates case admitted under oath in his own trial he had lied in Bolden’s trial as part of a deal for a lighter sentence, yet Bolden still had to serve his sentence.

      1. I believe that the deal for a lighter sentence was for him testifying against the defendant, Mr. Bolden. My recollection of the perjury was that it had to do with the witness not being truthful about what he did for a living, or something similar to that. The appeals court, in essence, ruled that the perjury was tangential to the charge at hand. The info from “Lee “supposedly came from the FBI, I believe. It seems strange that the FBI would tell another agency an informant’s name. It’s also a bit odd that they seemed to want to wash their hands of the whole thing by passing the info along to the Secret Service. The FBI not wanting to jump the Secret Service on a protective matter sounds like they knew something off brand was going on and they didn’t want any part of it.

        1. Odd indeed. The release of suspects named and not is a bit odd. I wonder about the hand of Richard Cain here, I.E. momo/giancana. I’m no lawyer but from what I’ve read Bolden seems to have been railroaded. The same Judge on both cases, striking down relevant information…

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