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Will the real Manchurian Candidate please stand up?

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posted on Jan, 3 2013 @ 11:18 AM
At the risk of relentlessly flogging a deceased equine I’d like to start a discussion which I hope will lead to some more clarity on a theory I’ve had for some time. If this thread is erroneously placed, or hopelessly redundant, I will understand its transfer or outright demise. If, on the other hand, this subject has merit on ATS please feel free to contribute as it may clarify a specific slice of history which as near as I can tell has not been specifically focused on.

With that, the basic theme is this; maybe there really was a ‘Manchurian Candidate’ involved in the assassination of JFK. I know, I know, the mere mention of “JFK” and “Manchurian Candidate” on ATS brings to mind heaps upon piles of deceased equines and hordes running around with clubs, but bear with me for a moment. What I am about to focus on is at minimum a curious quinkydink if not a significant stone which has been left unturned. Having done a fair amount of research into this subject, there are also a number of interesting collateral developments which, to me anyway, make this theory plausible.

Okay, and so the plot kind of goes like this; so let’s just say for a moment that there really was a ‘Manchurian Candidate’, a brainwashed robotic killer, who had been successfully subverted into taking the life of a major political figure upon secret command. We won’t worry about ‘who’ that person might have been just yet, but for the purposes here let’s just suppose one did in fact exist at approximately the timeframe of the JFK assassination. We’ll come back to this in a moment.

We know for a fact that the US government became obsessed with mind control experiments with programs such as MK Ultra and others beginning as early as the early 1950’s. The amount of time, funding and effort applied to these programs was extensive and continued through the early 1970’s (and may still for all we know, but we’ll stick with what we know for now). Much of this research was based on the notion that competing political systems and countries were working on similar programs and the US needed to keep pace (so the story goes).

We also know that the original novel “The Manchurian Candidate” authored by Richard Condon was first published in 1959. As just a brief aside here; how could Condon have ever known, at that time, that such a program might exist, let alone guessed at the details? Coincidence, in an era full of rumor mongering and conspiracies, is the most common answer. But, was there more?

Richard Condon was a notable fiction author in that much of his material dealt with his personal loathing of those in power and the abuse thereof. As an American author, able to possibly subliminally reach out to the masses with the printed word, who would have been a better candidate to pass along a message? More importantly, as a vocal critic of those in power, could this have been a sympathetic candidate to recruit for some political opposition purpose? No, I’m not suggesting Condon was a Manchurian Candidate here, but perhaps he was a knowing / unknowing messenger in a much larger power struggle.

Moving on, so let’s just say that Richard Condon was somehow recruited to send a message to the masses which one person, the real Manchurian Candidate, would see and hopefully react to (think: the Queen of Diamonds). Well, the obvious question is; what if our real Manchurian candidate didn’t read books, or didn’t happen to read this particular book? Hmmm…

So what does all this have to do with JFK? Keep in mind, the year was 1959. JFK wasn’t even sworn in until January of 1961. Well, maybe initially the handlers of our ‘candidate’ didn’t have a specific figure in mind other than a significant political leader of the western world. But, as 1959 and 1960 passed it may have become clear that the original message had either not been received, or if it had it had not been acted upon.

By 1962 worldwide political tensions had reached an all-time high. As we all know, in October of 1962 the leaders of the world’s two super powers stood toe to toe with their fingers poised over the top of the proverbial “button”, the pushing of which would almost certainly end the world as we all knew it. By the end of October the Cuban Missile Crisis had drawn to a close. The Soviet Union had blinked and withdrew. It was far from over though, the hornets’ nest of political posturing would continue for another 20 some odd years.

Coincidentally, also during October of 1962 a little known Hollywood director by the name of John Frankenheimer released a movie based on Richard Condon’s novel, The Manchurian Candidate. Frankenheimer would ultimately go on to become a respected director in Hollywood, but the timing of the release of film The Manchurian Candidate, nine days into the Cuban Missile Crisis is interesting to say the least. But there’s more…

One of the most striking sequences in the Condon novel, and the Frankenheimer / Axlerod screenplay of the same name is the famous and bizarre train scene exchange between characters Marco (Sinatra) and Chaney (Leigh). In a roughly five minute exchange of non-sequitors, likely one of the most bizarre in cinematic history, an almost cryptic code is laid out. I won’t re-quote all of the sequence here, but it is easily located on the internet by searching on ‘manchurian candidate train scene’.

Even more interesting is the fact that the famous scene is almost identical to that of the book. Was this the coded message the real Manchurian candidate was supposed to hear just two years before in the book? Was the message being reinforced? Or, was it altered just enough to reach out to someone else? Perhaps the message simply hadn’t gotten through and up on the big silver screen it might have a better chance.

The embarrassment of Khrushchev by Kennedy during the Cuban Missle Crisis would not be forgotten. This embarrassment was particularly unpleasant in light of the earlier secret deal Khrushchev and Kennedy had struck to remove US missiles from Turkey and Italy. Khrushchev looked to the world as if he was retreating publically from the events of the crisis of ’62. The events had been an embarrassment not only to Khrushchev, but more importantly to the whole of the Russian homeland (and notably the KGB).

By the time of his speech to America University in 1963, Kennedy, ever the statesman, had been able to ease relations with Khrushchev to the point where just a month later they were able to come to agreement on further nuclear reductions and test bans. This infuriated the Soviet power elite, they viewed Khrushchev as acquiescing to the Americans and this was categorically unacceptable. Now, both Kennedy and Khrushchev had to go.

To be continued in Part 2...

edit on 1/3/2013 by Flyingclaydisk because: (no reason given)

edit on 1/3/2013 by Flyingclaydisk because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 3 2013 @ 11:19 AM
Part 2...

We all know what happened next. In November of 1963 JFK was assassinated by Lee Harvey Oswald, a former Marine who had defected to the Soviet Union in 1959 through 1962. From my perspective, I don’t really think Oswald even was the Manchurian candidate, but given his sympathy to the communist cause he was almost certainly a cog in the larger wheel. For his part, Khrushchev was deposed roughly a year later.

We may never know the full truth of whether a real “Manchurian Candidate” ever existed, or at what level he, or she, operated. Fictional literature and cinema would have us believe the ‘Manchurian candidate’ was a lone actor, the triggerman himself. But what if the true Manchurian candidate were really an organizer with a much larger political agenda at hand, and the famous train scene from the novel and the screenplay was the switch that set the whole plan in motion?

I live at 53 West 54th Street, Apartment 3B. Can you remember that?

ELdorado 5-9970. Can you remember that?

El dorado 5-9970

Perhaps there really was a Manchurian Candidate.

P.S. Comments and observations welcome.

posted on Jan, 3 2013 @ 11:44 AM
reply to post by Flyingclaydisk

Alright, so I'm diving into your thesis here. I'm not saying I agree with you or even agree that mind-control is even possible, but let me just take on some assumptions for the fun of it and dive in:

If what your suggesting is true, then the people involved with "handling" and "managing" these Manchurian Candidates would have to make sure that specific books or films were viewed by these candidates or else the plan would fall through--which would mean that whoever the handlers were---they would have to have some prior knowledge of what would be in a script or a book before it was released to the public. And they would also have to have hand in making sure that that phrase was placed in that film or book---so connections to the entertainment industry would be a necessity.


posted on Jan, 3 2013 @ 11:47 AM
reply to post by Flyingclaydisk

That was very insightful. I am going to look at the video and some other things.

posted on Jan, 3 2013 @ 11:54 AM
reply to post by theghoster

The M.O. is to keep everything so compartmentalized that the left hand only responds to the right hand without kowing why. A "handler" might be given a task of making sure some one is somewhere at a certain time. If the codes were set in the mind then the handler would only have to have the candidate see the film, and he wouldn't have to know why.
Hollywood would follow the book especially if only one person got to decide how far from the book the movie was allowed to stray. Which means the movie was made in hollywood but not to help the cause, in their eyes, but to turn a book into a movie. The authors, a lot of times, have some say so on how the movie relates to the books.

posted on Jan, 3 2013 @ 12:12 PM
Very interesting, I put nothing past the government or the military. I say this not as a nut case but based upon my own experinces as a former US Army special operative and former Naval oprative. I to this day have an unkwown matter in my blood system. I believe it was administered sometime in the mid 70's prior to my assisgnment to S. America as a matter of fact I will be granted full VA priviledges this year after several years of actively arguing my case.
I can attest that the Iran-Contra affair was real, I was there. I have also been involved in numerous operations around the globe and have seen how our government can shape history and events. My service record has been redacted and many of station assignments are not recorded.

That being said, I am not a conspiracy nut, I am a realist. If what I was involved in could be covered up, warped or distorted by the military than most anything is possible. A specific example, I was injured and hospitalized for approx 5 months, my parents and grand father who was a high ranking noncom in the Army and parents who were politically connected to a degree, would always receive letters from me on a weekly basis, I was the product of a single mom not common in my era and frowned upon by society, nonetheless I was very close and wrote often. My mother received letters from me weekly during my hospital stay, they were all typed and posted marked from germany as they were told I was hospitialized there. The problem I when I came too and began to recover I was in Panama and had been comatose for 4 months. The entire letter campaign was staged, I never knew of this until my mother passed away and she had saved every letter I had sent her, this became important when I began to have medical issues and this unkown agent is in my blood stream. I have my own mystery to solve however with all of this I am convinced that the government creates it's own reality and history.

posted on Jan, 3 2013 @ 12:16 PM
A very interesting thread, however....I must take exception with this statement:

We all know what happened next. In November of 1963 JFK was assassinated by Lee Harvey Oswald, a former Marine who had defected to the Soviet Union in 1959 through 1962. From my perspective, I don’t really think Oswald even was the Manchurian candidate, but given his sympathy to the communist cause he was almost certainly a cog in the larger wheel. For his part, Khrushchev was deposed roughly a year later.

This is the "official story", but the facts do NOT fit this statement. LHO did not kill JFK, he was simply a patsy.

As far as his defection, if he was a true defector, why did the military teach him Russian? And why was he allowed to return from the USSR with no questions whatsoever? I doubt our government would allowed an avowed communist to just return to the US and pick up where he left off.

The "sympathy to the communist cause" was a red herring. If anything, he was a double agent, and a CIA operative who was set up to take the fall for the real shooters, and there were more than one.

posted on Jan, 3 2013 @ 01:03 PM
reply to post by FissionSurplus


I tend to agree with much of what you say. Perhaps it would have been better for me to say LHO had been "arrested" for the assassination of JFK rather than saying he actually did it. However, the reason I didn't do that was I didn't want to sidetrack the discussion by getting into the multiple shooter theory which has been covered at length here ATS. Rather, I wanted to get the basic theme of the theory across initially.

One of the things I had hoped would come from the discussion which would ensue is just to your point, that perhaps LHO was just a pawn in a much larger operation, a fall-guy if you will. Again, my whole premise is maybe there really was a manchurian candidate in all of this (either orchestrating, or acting). The real question is who, and how did he / she fit into the larger picture.

There are other elements I could have also noted that, at some point, I'd like to explore. One of these would be an alleged meeting between Jack Ruby and some alleged CIA (or other) spooks aboard an aircraft at an FBO in the week leading up to the assasination. However, again, my main purpose was not to rehash the entire JFK events, but focus more narrowly on the possible existence of a real manchurian candidate and what, if any, role they might have played in the events.

Thanks for the comments.

posted on Jan, 3 2013 @ 01:12 PM
reply to post by theghoster

Your observation is correct. There would need to have been connections to the entertainment and publication industries at some level, hence its implication in my OP.

When you look back at this time in history there were scores of high profile folks in Hollywood under investigation by the FBI and others for their alleged roles in communism. Propaganda via the media in whatever form it takes, entertainment, press and even literature is a powerful tool of persuasion. This is well known and documented back as far as WWI and possibly earlier (some might argue back as far as Christ). Exploitation of individuals, groups and masses through propaganda can have real and measurable effects. It is for this reason that folks involved in these industries came under serious scrutiny during the heyday of propaganda. These outlets would have been prime targets for infiltration in order to further an agenda.

posted on Jan, 3 2013 @ 01:16 PM
reply to post by Flyingclaydisk

But I do agree, that perhaps the Manchurian Candidate was perhaps some other "Master Operator" or Master Handler of some sort. In the JFK it might be someone Oswald might have even known? Is there a record of an "out of place" of "unique" figure that popped into Oswald's life before the event?


posted on Jan, 3 2013 @ 01:49 PM
reply to post by Flyingclaydisk

Fair enough. I do agree with the rest of your premise. I think there were...and ARE...Manchurian candidates running around, waiting to be "activated".

How did Mr. Condon get so much of his story right on the money? Here's what's weird.....Mr. Condon has been accused of, and proven, to be a plagarist, stealing many parts of his story from other books, especially "I, Claudius", a classic 1934 novel by Robert Gates.

Silverio, a 37-year-old software engineer in Menlo Park, wrote in her Weblog in 1998 ( that a passage from "Manchurian" was strikingly similar to a passage in Robert Graves' classic 1934 historical novel about the Roman Empire, "I, Claudius." She picked up Condon's novel after seeing the 1962 John Frankenheimer film starring Frank Sinatra, and early on in the book read, "Johnny knew in his superstitious heart of hearts that his marriage to Raymond's mother was an impious thing and this knowledge, it seems, affected him nervously, putting an inner restraint upon his flesh.'

" 'Impious?' I said. 'Inner restraint on his flesh?' I've read that sentence before," Silverio wrote. "I went to the straight-fiction bookshelves and found 'I, Claudius' and read the original passage." The original passage reads, "He knew that the marriage was impious: this knowledge, it seems, affected him nervously, putting an inner restraint on his flesh."

This was but one of many phrases and word choices similar to those in "I, Claudius" that Silverio discovered, and she ran on her Weblog excerpts from each book side by side for people to look at for themselves.

"I can't be the first one to notice this," she wrote.

Mr. Condon admitted that the only reason he ever wrote was to earn money.

After coming across her posting, The Chronicle contacted John Olsson, a forensic linguist and director of the Forensic Linguistics Institute near London. Besides being the author of a forthcoming university textbook on his field and advising lawyers in Great Britain and the United States on cases of authorship, Olsson runs an Internet consultancy service ( that deals with authenticating all sorts of writings.

His opinion of "The Manchurian Candidate"? "There can be no disputing that Richard Condon plagiarized from Robert Graves," Olsson said in an e-mail.

So he's a plagarist who was never busted. The people who have studied his writings conclude that he doesn't have a style of writing, he's all over the map, so he was a creative plagarist.


My point about this is simple: Mr. Condon plagarized a few books, etc., to come up with his story. One may ask how he knew about MKUltra and Manchurian candidates.....I will go out on a limb and say that this story came to him from somebody in the know, and he was paid to put it out there....but since he was not really a true novelist (not yet, anyway), he had to get creative in his work in order to tell a story that would sell. As a previous Hollywood press agent, he was perfectly aware of what was needed to push this to the masses.

Although the author went on to write many books, this one is suspect, for more than just the stealing of other's ideas to cobble together this story.

It is interesting to note that Claudius was a very interesting character in his own right. Not to distract from your idea, but Claudius was a man with no social skills and all the couth of a rabid dog. However, this particular item sticks out for me:

In AD 42 the first revolt against his rule took place, led by the governor of Upper Illyricum, Marcus Furius Camillus Scribonianus.

The attempt of rebellion was easily put down before it ever really got started. However it revealed that the instigators of the uprising had possessed connections with very influential nobility in Rome. The subsequent shock of just how close to his person such conspirators may be, led the emperor to adopt stringent security measures. And it is partly due to these measures that any of the six or more plots against the emperor during his twelve year reign didn't meet with success.
However, the suppression of such conspiracies cost the lives of 35 senators and over 300 equestrians. what wonder that the senate didn't like Claudius !

There is more to this whole thing than meets the eye!

posted on Jan, 3 2013 @ 01:58 PM
reply to post by FissionSurplus

One may ask how he knew about MKUltra and Manchurian candidates.....I will go out on a limb and say that this story came to him from somebody in the know,...

Bingo! I wouldn't necessarily say he knew about MK Ultra per se, very few did, but perhaps someone might have given him an idea what was going on.

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