FLASH CANCELLED: What one of the last JFK files will tell us about Oswald

FBI memo

A less redacted FBI on Oswald

In response to my post, “FBI wide shut”, a faithful reader points out there is a “minimally redacted” version of a key FBI memo about accused assassin Lee Harvey Oswald. I’m hoping President Trump will order release this December 1963 memo without redactions before the April 28 deadline for release of all JFK files. But I’m not holding my breath.

Why does it matter?

The partially declassified memo addresses a key question raised by CIA and FBI surveillance of Oswald in 1963, specifically, why did the FBI send the following message on October 9, 1963, 44 days before JFK was killed?



Background: In 1963, an “security flash” served notice on all Bureau offices that FBI Headquarters wanted to be notified if a  certain individual had returned to the United States or had been arrested.

The effect of the October 9, 1963 FLASH CANCELLED  was to reduce law enforcement scrutiny of Oswald at the very moment that some people believe he was conceiving of killing the president of the United States.

There are two theories about why the FBI took this action. The fully redacted version of the memo will go a long way to telling whether the surveillance of Oswald in late 1963 is a story of incompetence or intelligence intrigue.

Oswald in Custody

Lee Harvey Oswald

The Oops Theory. This scenario, accepted by the Warren Commission, holds that three FBI agents with responsibility for watching domestic subversives simply underestimated a cunning leftist named Oswald. They ignored standard FBI procedures out of sheer inadvertence, it is argued. The cancellation was just an inadvertent mistake–“oops”–that only looks significant in retrospect. Besides, Oswald was not arrested between October 9 and November 1963, so the cancellation (it is argued) did not actually protect Oswald as he made his way to Dealey Plaza.

Jean Davison, author of Oswald’s Game, has cogently defended the Oops Theory in the comments section of this blog

State SecretThe Ops Theory: This theory, advocated by attorney Bill Simpich and historian John Newman, holds that the flash cancellation was related to Oswald’s role in U.S. intelligence operations. In this view, the cancellation indicated that certain U.S. officials wanted to shield Oswald from attention because he was of some use to the FBI and/or the CIA in the fall of 1963.

Simpich offers the most granular version of the Ops theory in his ebook State Secret (available free from the Mary Ferrell Foundation).

In coming days, I will compare and contrast the Oops Theory and the Ops Theory, as propounded by Jean and Bill. I lean toward Bill’s view but I’ll present both arguments so you can decide for yourself which is more plausible.

In any case, this FBI memo is one of the key documents to look for in the final JFK file releases due, by President Trump’s order, by April 28.






  1. H Beazley says:

    Please reference DALLAS63 by Peter Dale Scott that discloses the truth about Oswald: The FBI admitted that Oswald was impersonated in Mexico City, proving conspiracy. Readers should give no credence to Jean Davison’s insistence that Oswald was the lone gunman. All medical evidence given by David Mantik, Doug Horne and Charles Crenshaw proves that the President was killed by two shots from the front. I, too, have been a loyal reader of your site for years and in years past my comments have been posted, but no longer.

  2. Kennedy63 says:

    I recently reread Mr. Scott’s revelatory “State Secrets.” Ms.Goodpasture and Ms.Ergeter were deeply involved in helping to turn down the security alerts on Oswald, after the Mexico City intrigue involving an imposter using the name ‘Lee Oswald’. Sufficient is the evidence that the whole sordid Mexico City affair was a counterintelligence operation involving Desmond Fitzgerald, James Angelton, Win Scott, the two women mentioned above, and others at CIA. It is easy to posit that the FBI also worked closely with CIA to discredit the FPCC, and other leftist groups, simply by having Oswald sassociated with them shortly prior to the JFK murder, including the ACLU. The Oops v the Ops comparison portends to be useful, if only to dispel the notion that the FBI and CIA were at odds and working relationships were strained. Oops, was that fallacy supposed to be focused upon?

  3. Jean Davison says:


    My theory isn’t “Oops.” As much as I would wish it, I don’t think the FBI could have prevented the assassination. They weren’t mind readers. I disagree that the Flash by Bureau “reduced law enforcement scrutiny of Oswald.” What actual evidence (document or testimony) supports that? I may be wrong, but I’d like to see why.

    For what it’s worth, I’ve found Flash notices in the fingerprint files of Frank Sturgis and mafioso Russell Bufalino:


    https://www.maryferrell.org/showDoc.html?docId=127595&relPageId=6&search=“flash_by bureau”

    This mob guy had his flash canceled:


    • Well, let’s start at the beginning. What is a “security flash”? It was a tool to locating and identifying “bad guys,” people whom the FBI wanted to keep track of, specifically people (like Oswald) who were known to have gone overseas. If they returned and were arrested, FBI headquarters wanted to know. In the case of the Oswald, the Espionage section wanted to know because Oswald, as someone who lived in the Soviet Union, was someone who might be involved in espionage. So the “security flash” was sent to all FBI offices. The “security flash,” in other words, called the Bureau’s attention to the person maned in the flash. It added a layer of law enforcement scrutiny to that person, be it Oswald, Sturgis or Buffalino. With a “security flash” in effect the target’s actions would be scrutinized if he was arrested. Without a “security flash,” the target’s actions would not be scrutinized. So the removal of the “security flash” is, ipso facto, the removal of scrutiny. The cancellation of the flash is a statement, we don’t need to know about this guy, even if he is arrested. The cancellation of the flash is the actual evidence.

  4. Jean Davison says:

    I see the flash in Oswald’s fingerprint file at the Ferrell site, but I can’t find a memo sent to all FBI offices.

    The level of FBI scrutiny of Oswald doesn’t seem to follow the critics’ view of what a flash means. Oswald’s “Flash by Bureau” was in effect from the time he left Russia until Oct. 9, 1963, yet after Fain interviewed him twice the FBI closed his case in August 1962. It remained closed until Hosty reopened it in March 1963 and stayed open after Gheesling canceled the flash. The flash notice seems to have had no effect on FBI scrutiny of Oswald.

    So what difference did Gheesling’s action really make? Could it be that the timing of the cancellation simply “looks funny”?

  5. Bogman says:

    Did MSM ever cover the Oswald security flash cancellation?

    I can understand them staying away from conspiracy mongering, but they don’t seem to cover even the most straightforward new wrinkle in the historical record.

    If there was some new record that came to light showing someone missed an inspection of a key component in one of the Space Shuttle tragedies, I think they’d cover it. JFK – no.

    WTH are they afraid of?

  6. Arnaldo M. Fernandez says:

    If you had Oswald under security flash because he was an ex Marine re-defector from the Soviet Union, who subscribed to red-wing newspapers and openly campaigned for Castro, his visits to the Soviet Embassy in Mexico City (the CIA Station omitted to inform his visits to the Cuban Consulate) adds up to maintain the flash, not to cancel it. If the hypothesis Oops were true, the cancellation is surprising. Thus, the hypothesis Ops is stronger, since the fact of the cancellation wouldn’t be surprising at all. Between Oops and Ops, the latter offers a better explanation.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

In seeking to expand the range of informed debate about the events of 1963 and its aftermath, JFKFacts.org welcomes comments that are factual, engaging, and civil. more

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

male enhancement: need prescription for viagra i love penises very big penis male enhancement that really works when does the penis stop growing penis pun pygeum gnc how to grow my dick bigger sex endurance pills penis device zhen gongfu reviews leyzene reviews home remedies for impotence dick size chart hulu account customer service male enhancement store can a penis be too big what is jelqing different dick sizes walk ins welcome signs my penis is hard gnc erectile dysfunction products mens health life erect black penis

weight loss: zach galifianakis weight loss low gi diets for weight loss zoloft weight loss weight loss vegetable soup weight loss vegetarian diets maria weight loss 3 month weight loss workout plan apex life sciences reviews 48 hour fast weight loss results d master diet pills reviews detoxing for weight loss best and effective weight loss pills dr oz quick weight loss pills dollar store diet pills weight loss pills raspberry ketone mood enhancing diet pills weight loss magic pills xlife weight loss online pharmacy for diet pills quick weight loss center cypress texas low carb diabetic diet for weight loss weight loss places nature made garcinia cambogia new pills to lose weight

vape: ejuice calculator 510 thread vape pen battery ohio vape laws artery pal 2 black cat vape resa stick tank vaper dna voopoo u2 coil cross compatible hello kitty ecig sick box mods subbox ecig e cigarette how many 400 puffs ecig v2 vertx plus manual suroin drop menthol tobacco vape juice eq by innokin e cigarette shop fuquay varina amazon voopoo naked 100 sour sweet e cigarette logo black background baby beast vs big baby beast vs cloud beast cheap e pens uwell crown nickel reddit aspire odyssey mini kit

cbd oil: best place to buy cbd oil tasty vape cbd potent cbd oil what is the best cbd gummies gmax cbd cbd honolulu airopro cbd cartridges entourage meaning in hindi how many mg cbd for pain best cbd products on amazon selling cbd on ebay 2019 cbd ban nyc who is the main does cbd kill cancer shisha and weed smoke shop cbd oil re effect ok abbreviation state innovet pet cbd oil cbd for autism spectrum kusa cbd oil pos with cbd oil cbd oil chenical formula cbd products for sleep

exam: The Most Recommended ACP-003 Training For Sale, Buy Discount 133-S-713 Real Exam Questions Covers All Key Points, Latest Upload 642-552 Exam Questions Sale, 50% OFF C9550-270 Ebook Pdf Will Be More Popular, Up To Date BAS-010 Vce Dumps Is Your Best Choice, 50% Discount HP0-Y17 Certification With 100% Pass Rate, Download 00M-617 Simulation Questions For Download, Most Popular 70-323 Guide For All Candidates From All Over The World, New Updated 70-229 Answers , Helpful 070-583J Test Engine For Sale, Latest Updated 1Z1-858 Exam Dumps Pdf Is Your Best Choice, Easily To Pass STI-882 Braindump Pdf Online Store,