The final batch of declassified Kennedy assassination files have been made public, bringing to light a memo revealing a plot to kill JFK may have been in the offing more than a year before the president was shot and killed.
CNN uncovered the memo, which had faded over time, making it difficult to read. The message was written to J. Lee Rankin, who served as general counsel for the Warren Commission investigating JFK’s death.
It details an anonymous phone conversation from October 15, 1962, in which the mystery caller stated that “‘Iron Curtain Countries’ planned to pay a hundred thousand dollars for the assassination of President Kennedy.”
The document also states that a man “believed to be the same person” contacted the CIA in the days following Kennedy’s death.
“It appears that the caller, who professes to be the Polish chauffeur of a Soviet Embassy car in Canberra [Australia] first phoned in over a year ago, on 15 October 1962, repeat 1962,” writes Richard Helms, the author of the memo and then the CIA deputy director.
“At that time, he told a story about five Soviet submarines carrying 400 to 500 Soviet soldiers on their way to Cuba. One purpose of this troop movement, he said, was to support the Governor of Mississippi. He added that there was a plot to pay one hundred thousand dollars to kill President Kennedy. Behind the plot, he said, were the ‘Iron Curtain countries,’ and ‘communist men in England, Hong Kong, and probably other countries.'”
Though the CIA dismissed the warning as a “crank” in the files, it also admitted that “this conclusion… cannot be confirmed.”
Could the CIA have done more to prevent the shooting of JFK? It’s not the first major revelation to come from the files – for more information on the declassified content, check out loaded’s round-up of the biggest revelations to come out of the JFK assassination files.
Loaded staff writer Jack Beresford has produced content for Lad Bible, Axonn Media and a variety of online sports and news media outlets.