The good news is that at least some of the missing Presidential travel files for the fall of 1963 are going to be made available to NARA….from an agent who kept personal copies. These files relate to the Tampa trip and you should all read Bill Kelly’s blog on this; Bill has been very involved with the recovery, thanks Bill!
The subject of Secret Service trip files brings up one of those things which may get lost in SWHT, but which is really a game changer in pondering the conspiracy. If you accept Abraham Bolden’s information on the last minute cancellation of the Chicago presidential trip and motorcade that fall, you are left with a couple of context altering issues.
First, the Chicago trip would have been cancelled because of a known, pending threat to the President – and you don’t tell the President he needs to cancel without giving him some idea of why. Which means that as of October, 1963 JFK and almost certainly RFK would know there was an open threat of some sort.
Second, given the names of the suspects and other information from Bolden, that threat would have been isolated to Cuban exiles, a specific category of risk.
We have known for some time that the Presidential travel to Miami ,which followed the planned Chicago trip, had an extreme level of security attached to it and that a relatively short distance auto travel element (not a true motorcade) was replaced by helicopter transport for the Presidential party. We even know that the Secret Service went as far as to work directly with CIA in finding local Cuban’s to help sniff out potential threats. There is every reason something like that was done for the Tampa leg of the Florida trip as well, but we have not had the full file set for Tampa (and I suspect not for Miami). Given a known threat from Chicago, we could fully understand the anticipated dangers of travel to Miami and Tampa and the huge increase in security measures.
It is also quite interesting that, as Bill relates in his blog, an agent from the Tampa trip was called into a special headquarters meeting immediately following the assassination – and apparently the subject was Tampa.
Vince Palamara has also demonstrated that the WHD was given one to two additional personnel associated with threat identification for trips to Florida and to Texas….and those assignments were intentionally obfuscated after the fact.
So….it looks like the Secret Service, or at least some people in it, were indeed of some standing threat to JFK (unfortunately we also know that one of their greatest failings was being able to deal with a mobile threat since they categorized all threats strictly by city and name of threat, not by category or source). The situation reminds me of the FBI, where if they found that a given suspect was not in the city where the crime occurred, when it occurred – they simply declared they could not have been involved in a conspiracy related to the crime….sigh.
Bottom line, it appears that, at say Rowley’s level, and with at least some minimal knowledge by JFK and his brother, the President was known to be at risk from armed and fanatic Cuban exiles. Which may well have something to do with Rowley’s apparent complicity in suppression of evidence in the days immediately following the assassination.