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Kennedy's Double


Lee Forman
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“That’s perfectly O.K. I don’t think I’m going to sleep very much tonight anyway. Why don’t you come in and have a cup of coffee?” Lish came in and seemed more informal and friendly than I had remembered while at City Hall. “I thought we might get better acquainted and maybe answer some of your questions,” he said. As we started to pass pleasantries, another man stepped from the shadows on the porch where I had only seen his figure and moved into the light. Louise gave an audible gasp that all of us could hear and I felt a shock run through me. There standing in our little hallway was John F. Kennedy, alive again. At least that’s what I thought at that instant. The man standing there was the exact double of the late President in every detail. Had I not known that the President was dead, I would have staked my life that I was being visited by him. Every feature about him, his face, his hair, his build, even his clothes looked exactly like the President. It was as if a ghost had suddenly appeared. Even his voice sounded so much like Mr. Kennedy’s. My mind simply couldn’t absorb it all and Louise was struck dumb, her eyes wide open in amazement. Lish introduced the double as a fellow agent and apologized for not preparing us for this shocking experience. We all sat down at the kitchen table. Later I would learn that many American Presidents have had doubles, including President Roosevelt. All my life I had heard that there is someone, somewhere who looks exactly like you, but until that night I’d never known it for the truth. The agent told us some of his experiences doubling for the President. They were fascinating.

So how come Howard Brennan is the only one to have made such a claim? Is there any other information on who this double was, or a photo of same?

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Unless someone can produce a clue on Kennedy's double, I think you have to assume that Brennan's credibility is in question as an eye-witness. And maybe we'll never know just what the hell all of this is about:

Mr. BELIN. Mr. Brennan, you are the same Howard Leslie Brennan who testified this morning here?

Mr. BRENNAN. Yes, sir.

Mr. BALL. Do you know a George Murray, of the National Broadcasting Co.

Mr. BRENNAN. I do not.

Mr. BELIN. Have you ever worked for the Union Terminal?

Mr. McCLOY. You are still under oath, you realize.

Mr. BRENNAN. Yes, sir.

Mr. BELIN. Have you ever worked for the Union Terminal Co. in Dallas?

Mr. BRENNAN. I have not.

Mr. BELIN. Did you ever state to anyone that you heard shots from opposite the Texas School Book Depository and saw smoke and paper wadding come out of boxes on a slope below the railroad trestle at the time of the assassination? Did you ever say that or that, in substance, to anyone?

Mr. BRENNAN. I did not.

Mr. BELIN. That is all.

Mr. BRENNAN. Is there another Howard Brennan?

Mr. BELIN. Well, sir; we don't know. We wanted to know whether or not you ever made this statement to anyone.

Mr. BRENNAN. No, sir.

The CHAIRMAN. Thank you very much, Mr. Brennan.

Mr. BRENNAN. I would like to ask a question off the record.

The CHAIRMAN. Off the record.

(Discussion off the record.)

How Rosemary Willis could say that she heard a shot coming from over her right shoulder, while Brennan doesn't say anything about it, while he identifies 2 of the black employees on the 5th floor being together in the alleged unopened window, makes him even more questionable - unless there are 2 Kennedys and 2 Brennans? :rolleyes:

Wiki on Political Decoys:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Political_decoy

A political decoy is a person employed to impersonate a politician, in order to draw attention away from the real person or to take risks on their behalf. This can also apply to military figures, or civilians impersonated for political/espionage purposes.

The political decoy is an individual who has been selected because of their strong physical resemblance to the person they are impersonating. This resemblance can be strengthened by judicious use of plastic surgery. Often, such decoys are trained to speak and behave like their 'target'.

Contents [hide]

1 Decoying: theory and practice

2 Political decoys in history

2.1 "Rudolf Hess/Unknown" (1941?-1987)

2.2 Bernard Montgomery/Clifton James and 'Tex' Banwell (1944)

2.3 Adolf Hitler/Unknown (?-1945)

2.4 "Heinrich Himmler/Unknown" (?-1945)

2.5 Joseph Stalin/"Rashid" (1940s-50s)

2.6 Sukarno/Unknown (1950s)

2.7 "Lee Harvey Oswald/Unknown" (1950s-1963)

2.8 Henry Kissinger/Unknown (1971)

2.9 Peter Hain MP/Unknown (1975)

2.10 "Pope Paul VI/Unknown" (?-1978)

2.11 Uday Hussein/Latif Yahia (1970s-1991)

2.12 "Saddam Hussein/Several unknowns" (1990s-2003)

2.13 Julian Castro/Joaquin Castro (2005)

3 Voice-only decoys

3.1 Winston Churchill/Norman Shelley (1940's)

3.2 Harry S. Truman/Unknown (1947)

3.3 Indira Gandhi/RS Nagarwala (1971)

3.4 Rahim Jaffer MP/Matthew Johnston (2001)

4 Political decoys in fiction

5 See also

[edit]

Decoying: theory and practice

The practice of decoying is essentially little different from the profession of celebrity lookalike, in which people mimic famous entertainers whom they resemble. The only difference is that the 'lookalike' presents an acknowledged artifice. The decoy must conceal his or her imposture from the 'audience'.

There is little research available on the probabilities and other factors involved in finding a physical 'double' for any given person; however, there are only so many permutations of the human physiognomy and the growth in the field of professional 'lookalikes' suggests that the odds against finding a 'double' might not be as high as they are popularly imagined to be.

In 2001, Poland hosted the first-ever doppelganger convention, to which lookalikes from across the country turned up, offering the unlikely spectacle of Stalin hobnobbing with Elizabeth Taylor. Nearly all the doppelgangers at the event had complemented their resemblance to a famous person by costume [1].

Indeed, the justly-famous incident in which Charlie Chaplin - at the height of his fame - failed to get through to the final selection in a 'Charlie Chaplin Lookalike' contest[2] suggests that preconceptions by observers can be just as important as any physical resemblance when it comes to impersonation.

However, there is a grey area in the 'lookalike' trade. Some 'lookalikes' actually stop mimicking their targets and start pretending to be them.

Comedian Robin Williams is one such victim, whose identity was allegedly 'stolen' by professional lookalike Michael Clayton, for financial reasons [3].

But if the lookalike is a double for a political or other official figure, the results could be far more important. Professional Lookalikes who bear an exceptional resemblance to high profile individuals, include Prince William's lookalike Matthew Turpin [4].

Other lookalikes can bear a startling resemblance to far more powerful figures, as shown by these lookalikes:

President George W Bush [5]

Laura Bush [6]

President Bill Clinton [7]

Senator Hillary Clinton [8]

The potential strategic uses of such impersonators are immediately apparent and have been made use of many times throughout history.

If the political decoy bears an overwhelming resemblance to their target and has been thoroughly trained, such impersonation can be almost impossible to detect, even at close range, without recourse to forensic science.

[edit]

Political decoys in history

Since deception is the whole purpose of employing a political decoy, there are many instances of alleged decoying which remain uncertain.

Joe R. Reeder, an undersecretary for the U.S. Army from 1993 to 1997, has gone on record with claims that a number of figures around the world have or have had decoys, including Manuel Noriega, Raoul Cédras, Enver Hoxha, Fidel Castro and Osama bin Laden [9].

Of Noriega's alleged four decoys, Reeder said: "They were good. They practiced his gait, his manner of speech and his modus operandi – what he did during the day and night."

Information on these instances of decoying is hard to come by. And falsely accusing an enemy of using a decoy can be an effective psyop tactic (making an enemy seem like a coward who dare not appear in person, for example).

This means that the confusion generated by the existence of real decoys is deepened by counterclaims of decoys where there may be none.

The case of Osama bin Laden is instructive.

In the absence of confirmed sightings of the terrorist figurehead, many sources openly speculated that videotaped messages from bin Laden were in fact recordings of a double - either as part of a 'frame-up' operation, or as part of a strategy of deception on bin Laden's part [10].

Speculation in such situations is naturally liable to run high. However, it is worth remembering that none of the persons making these claims (including Joe Reeder) could point to any physical, vocal or contextual feature that indicated the person in the recordings was not in fact bin Laden.

For the purposes of this entry, only well-documented allegations or confirmed cases of political decoying are discussed. Instances which are still under debate will have section headings in quotes.

Examples are given in historical order.

[edit]

"Rudolf Hess/Unknown" (1941?-1987)

Hess, pre-1941.

Alleged doppelgangerIn 1973, British military surgeon Hugh Thomas was called upon to examine Rudolf Hess at Spandau prison, Berlin. Thomas was acquainted with Hess's medical records, which included a set of notes on a major wound Hess sustained during World War One. This was left by a rifle bullet passing through his torso, breaking two ribs, collapsing a lung and producing unavoidable entry and exit wounds on the chest and back.

Thomas did not find any such scarring on the man's body and therefore came to the belief that the man was not Hess, since (in Thomas's words) "The torso cannot lie."

Thomas also records other differences: eye colour, hair texture, bone structure, dentition, and Hess's chin, which (as can be seen from the photographs featured in this entry) appeared to lose its symmetry after his flight to Britain.

In his 1979 book The Murder of Rudolf Hess, Thomas set out a theory in which Hess had originally been impersonated by another German acting under the orders of Goering. This double had then flown to Britain in Hess's place and ended up in prison. Much of Thomas's theory is, by his own admission, tenuous or unclear. However, his original observation about the lack of a scar remains tantalising. Critics of this theory suggest that Thomas simply missed the scar when he examined Hess [11].

In 1997, it was again alleged that Hess had been replaced with a double. This time, the claimants were a military historian and a former British intelligence officer. Their claim, apparently based on contemporary documents, was that Hess had been killed after landing in Britain and 'doubled' by British intelligence. [12]

Neither of these theories is generally accepted by historians. None of Hess's fellow Spandau inmates, who had known and worked with him for years before his imprisonment, ever claimed or even voiced suspicions that their fellow inmate was anyone other than Hess himself.

[edit]

Bernard Montgomery/Clifton James and 'Tex' Banwell (1944)

The genuine 'Monty'

M. E. Clifton James, 'Monty's double'Perhaps the most famous political decoy, soldier M.E. Clifton James successfully impersonated General Bernard Montgomery ("Monty") for intelligence purposes during World War Two [13].

In 1940, James acted in an Army production called When Knights Were Bold and his photograph appeared in an Army newspaper with a remark about how much he resembled General Montgomery.

As a result, he was approached by actor David Niven in May 1944. Niven, then a Colonel in the Army Kinematograph Section, told James he was wanted to impersonate "Monty", as this would allow Montgomery to be somewhere else, so confusing the Germans.

James had to learn Montgomery's gestures, mannerisms, gait and voice and had to give up smoking.

Having lost his right-hand middle finger in the First World War, a realistic replacement was made.

Even his wife had to be deceived and was both kept in the dark and sent back to Leicester. Once he was trained, his trip as "Monty" was to Gibraltar and from there to Algiers. "Monty's" presence succeeded in confusing the Germans in regard to the invasion plans.

James was later the subject of a biopic called I Was Monty's Double.

The second (and less famous) 'Monty's Double', Keith Demer Banwell (image [14]) was serving with the land-based Long Range desert Group, which operated closely with the SAS.

Banwell was captured in a raid on Tobruk, but with a friend managed to steal a German vehicle and escape. During a subsequent raid on Crete he was taken prisoner at Heraklion and put under the personal supervision of Schmeling, who was serving in the German Army.

Banwell and a few of his comrades managed to slip away from their captors and then acquired an assault landing craft. With the help of some Cretan fishermen they made their getaway, but the craft ran out of fuel and drifted for nine days before reaching the North African coast. The privations of this voyage put Banwell in hospital for 12 weeks.

When he had recovered, someone noticed that he bore a resemblance to General Montgomery. It was decided that he should participate in deception ploys, and so Banwell was sent to Cairo to meet Montgomery, given the appropriate clothing, insignia and General's badges and sent on trips around the Middle East to confuse enemy spies.

However, as he was considerably taller than Montgomery, he was told that on no account should he get out of the car. Banwell, finding the assignment boring, sought a return to the infantry. [15][16].

[edit]

Adolf Hitler/Unknown (?-1945)

Adolf Hitler is known to have employed at least one double and it has been alleged that he employed as many as six.

Corpse of Hitler doppelganger, name unknown, 1945One of these unfortunate men was later knowingly executed by guards as part of a disinformation strategy and his corpse was found by Allied forces who initially believed it to be Hitler.

It has been wrongly reported that this man's name was Gustav Weler. However, this is not the case. Hugh Thomas's 1996 book Doppelgangers reports that Weler was indeed a Hitler lookalike but was located and interviewed by Allied forces after Hitler's death.

Film of this discovery surfaced in 1998 and many observers thought it was Hitler's corpse (despite accidental clues such as the corpse wearing very badly-darned socks).

In fact, Hitler's corpse had already been largely incinerated in an improvised cremation. It has also been alleged - on the basis of apparent discrepancies in dental records - that this partially-cremated corpse was not in fact Hitler but another double. The existence of Hitler doubles was one reason for the flurry of survival myths concerning Hitler in the aftermath of World War Two.

[edit]

"Heinrich Himmler/Unknown" (?-1945)

The alleged double of Heinrich Himmler, after committing suicide, 1945Hugh Thomas (see Rudolf Hess, above) claims that the man who committed suicide after his capture in Lüneburg in May 1945, was not in fact Heinrich Himmler. This claim is based on a number of physical discrepancies, including the apparent lack of a duelling scar on the corpse. Himmler was known to have a 'Y'-shaped scar on his left cheek, left by an epee; the corpse had none. Thomas claims that the substitution was deliberate, in order to throw the Allies off Himmler's scent. It is known that British intelligence agents, including Kim Philby, did not believe the Lüneburg prisoner was Himmler. Thomas's book on this subject SS1- The Unlikely Death of Heinrich Himmler[17] - sets out the alleged deception in great detail.

This theory is not generally accepted by historians.

[edit]

Joseph Stalin/"Rashid" (1940s-50s)

Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin is alleged to have had a double, identified only as "Rashid". Officials at the KGB allegedly learned that Rashid was a 'double' for Stalin and employed him to replace Stalin for some public functions after World War Two. Rashid spent two years studying with Alexei Dikiy, an actor who played the role of Stalin in propaganda films. Rashid claimed there were other Stalin lookalikes employed by the KGB, although he never met any. He claimed to have heard of another Stalin double who was hired to live in the dictator's dacha outside of Moscow in the late 1940s and 1950s when Stalin was dying. This double filled in for Stalin for media events and at times when Stalin had to meet government functionaries and others. Rashid died in 1991, aged 93.[18]

[edit]

Sukarno/Unknown (1950s)

The CIA had planned to bring down Indonesia's first president Sukarno by portraying him in a pornographic film in the late 1950s.

The agency put together a pornographic film starring a Sukarno lookalike in bed with a blonde playing a Soviet agent. The humiliation caused by circulating the film was supposed to drive Sukarno from office but the plan was unsuccessful.[19][20].

[edit]

"Lee Harvey Oswald/Unknown" (1950s-1963)

In 2004, researcher John Armstrong published a book entitled Harvey and Lee, which claimed to have identified a Lee Harvey Oswald double who had impersonated Oswald as part of an intelligence operation.

This remains unverified but impersonation of Oswald has featured in various JFK theories for decades, based on Oswald's apparent use of aliases and conflicting eyewitness accounts of Oswald's behaviour. The first such claim was made in Professor Richard Popkins' The Second Oswald, published in 1964.

The alleged two faces of Lee Harvey Oswald, according to John Armstrong: American-born Lee (top row) and Russian-speaking Harvey (bottom). The split image at the far right is allegedly a composite of Harvey and LeeThis position can even claim a measure of official support in the form of an FBI memo dated June 3, 1960, from J. Edgar Hoover, stating that "there is a possibility that an imposter is using Oswald's birth certificate" [21]. Oswald was a total unknown at the time.

Armstrong bases his claims on photo comparisons, which appear to show discrepancies in Oswald's physique and facial features. In some photos, Oswald appears to be scrawny with narrow features, while in others he appears thickset and broad (see right). Armstrong provides citations of apparently contradictory eyewitness testimony from the Warren Report, placing Oswald in two different locations at the same time.

He refers to these sightings as being of two individuals called 'Harvey' and 'Lee' and claims that this was premeditated impersonation, throughout Oswald's late childhood and into adult life, as part of the CIA's Project MKULTRA. It is Armstrong's claim that this impersonation was initially unrelated to the JFK assassination, but was later exploited by conspirators.

Armstrong has given lectures on his theory for years [22]; however his Harvey and Lee theory remains unaccepted by the majority of analysts and historians and has been heavily attacked by other researchers[23].

[edit]

Henry Kissinger/Unknown (1971)

A former aide to Henry Kissinger has gone on the record with claims that Henry Kissinger was impersonated at least once during his secret visit to China in 1971. Since no-one was allowed to examine 'Kissinger' at close quarters, the resemblance of the impersonator to his 'target' must remain under some doubt. [24]

[edit]

Peter Hain MP/Unknown (1975)

In his youth, British Labour Party MP and cabinet minister Peter Hain, was a prominent anti-apartheid campaigner with the young Liberals. In 1975, Hain (then aged 25) was arrested and charged with attempted robbery of a bank in Putney, London.

He was identified and picked out of a police lineup by Lucy Haines, the cashier from whom the robber had snatched £490, although Haines said "the man I saw had shorter hair and seemed thinner looking". A newspaper left in the bank at the time of the arrest had a picture of Peter Hain in it.

After snatching the money the robber had been chased through Putney High Street. Other witnesses to the robbery and the chase were unable to identify him positively and Hain was cleared on April 9, 1976 [25], when his defence pointed out Hain's strong alibis for the time of the robbery and argued successfully that there had been a case of mistaken identity.

Hain was sent a letterbomb in an apparent assassination attempt a few years prior to the robbery and now believes that the robbery was a deliberate attempt to frame him, using a political decoy. The apparent culprits were BOSS, the South African secret service, and the purpose of this would have been to 'neutralise' Hain as an anti-apartheid force.

Hain has never made any secret of his belief that he was deliberately impersonated. Various investigations have taken place over the years to ascertain the truth of this 'framing' claim. In 2003, former BOSS agent Gordon Winter submitted evidence to Parliament denying that he was behind the attempted framing of Hain [26].

In 1987, Hain published a book entitled A Putney Plot? which detailed his growing suspicions about the case.

A Putney Plot? - and a later, more general, book entitled Mistaken Identity - is listed and illustrated on Peter Hain's website under 'publications' [27].

It was alleged by intelligence sources (quoted by Hain) that the apparent framing was part of a general effort to destablise the Labour government of Harold Wilson, which relied on Liberal votes to maintain a working majority in Parliament.

Whether or not there is any truth in these Wilson-related claims, that a cabinet minister in Britain was once impersonated by a secret agent is a belief that seems to be widely accepted and is stated as fact in a BBC profile of Hain [28]. The statement also appears in a 'profile' interview with Hain on the alumni pages of the University of Sussex[29]

[edit]

"Pope Paul VI/Unknown" (?-1978)

It has long been claimed that Pope Paul VI was impersonated during the last years of his pontificate. Contemporary commentators pointed to what appeared to be height discrepancies during balcony appearances at St Peter's Square.

It has also been noted that after 1975, Pope Paul's facial appearance changed markedly. One photo comparison appears to show a disappearing birthmark on the Pope's left cheek [30]. Another photographic comparison shows that the Pope's alleged 'double' apparently had a narrower cranium, a fatter face, a shorter nose, larger eyes, slightly more hair and a wider jaw [31], although these photographs were taken years apart and the changes may be byproducts of the aging process. More difficult to dismiss are apparent differences in the shape of the Pope's ear and nose, also visible.

Voiceprint analysis of Paul reciting various blessings on different occasions has also been cited as evidence indicating impersonation [32].

Theories about why the Pope might have been impersonated range from the dramatic (imprisonment of the real Pope by evil Cardinals) to the mundane (a chronic health condition preventing public appearances). Many religious fanatics have put forward claims which involve such esoteric theological concepts as the antiChrist, the Third Secret of Fatima, etc [33].

[edit]

Uday Hussein/Latif Yahia (1970s-1991)

Saddam Hussein's son, and heir apparent as ruler of Iraq, Uday Hussein is known to have used a decoy, named Latif Yahia.

Latif Yahia (left) and Uday Hussein (right)Yahia was at school with Uday as a child (from approximately age 12 onwards), and claims to have been forcibly recruited and 'groomed' as his double at around that time. It is also claimed that, as he grew older, Yahia underwent extensive plastic surgery to enhance his resemblance to Uday. Yahia successfully fled Iraq in December 1991 after surviving eleven assassination attempts which were presumably intended to kill Uday; however his story only received widespread media coverage [34] after the invasion of Iraq in 2003.

[edit]

"Saddam Hussein/Several unknowns" (1990s-2003)

In 2003, German television network ZDF broadcast claimed that Iraq's former president Saddam Hussein was frequently replaced with doubles for TV appearances. This analysis was based on sophisticated measuring techniques, which detected discrepancies in the position of Hussein's facial features and blemishes from appearance to appearance. It was supported by the opinion of Jerrald Post, the man who created the CIA's Psychological Profile Unit [35]. It was also alleged that Austrian politician Jörg Haider had actually met a double when he thought he was meeting Hussein [36].

However, none of these claims has been verified and despite the invasion and the occupation (since 2003) of Iraq, there has been no confirmed sighting or capture of one of these alleged doubles, dead or alive.

[edit]

Julian Castro/Joaquin Castro (2005)

Julian Castro, leading candidate for mayor of San Antonio admitted in early 2005 to using his identical twin brother as a stand-in at a civic event without telling anyone. Julian Castro said his brother Joaquin stood in for him in the annual River Parade through downtown San Antonio because he (Julian) was busy hosting a 'neighbourhood leaders meeting'. The impersonation fooled a crowd of about 250,000 people. [37]

[edit]

Voice-only decoys

These are generally exceptionally good impersonators, who are used to give the impression that their 'target' is conducting a radio interview, telephone call or other vocal assignment.

[edit]

Winston Churchill/Norman Shelley (1940's)

A recurring rumour holds that some of Winston Churchill's most famous speeches to Parliament during World War II were subsequently recorded for radio broadcast not by Churchill, but by Norman Shelley impersonating Churchill. Churchill is known to have commented that Shelley's impersonations were excellent. Although the rumour has been promoted by some historians, there is a lack of supporting evidence and it is best classified as an urban legend. Shelley did however record a performance of Churchill's "We shall fight on the beaches" speech, but that was several years after the speech was originally made.

[edit]

Harry S. Truman/Unknown (1947)

The secure telephone on which the real President Truman would have made his phone calls.Edwin Wright served the U.S. federal government under President Harry S. Truman as General staff G-2 and Middle East specialist, Washington (1945-46); on the Bureau of Near East-South Asian-African Affairs, Department of State (1946 onwards); country specialist (1946-47); advisor U.N. affairs (1947-50); and advisor on intelligence (1950-55).

According to Wright, an unknown individual impersonated President Truman's voice on the telephone in order to sway foreign leaders into voting in particular ways at the United Nations.

There are two documents from Truman himself alleging this, both currently lodged at the Truman Presidential Library [38].

In the first, Truman wrote:

"Something's going on and I don't know what it is. Somebody called up the President of Haiti and he said that it was I. [...] He said, 'We want you to vote for the Zionist program.' As a result the President of Haiti changed his vote to satisfy what he thought was me. I don't know who this fellow was that called him up."

Wright comments: "In other words, somebody impersonated President Truman and threatened the President of Haiti. There were people who used President Truman's voice and name and he didn't know who they were." [39]

[edit]

Indira Gandhi/RS Nagarwala (1971)

On May 24, 1971, an ex-Indian Army Captain and serving intelligence officer called Rustom Sohr Nagarwala was able to take out 6m Rupees from the State Bank of India's Parliament Street branch by "mimicking the voice of [indian prime minister] Indira Gandhi" to Chief Cashier Ved Prakash Malhotra. Nagarwala died of a heart attack in prison later that year and the reason for the unsuccessful fraud remains unknown. [40] [41]

[edit]

Rahim Jaffer MP/Matthew Johnston (2001)

The Alliance party MP for Edmonton-Strathcona, Canada, was suspended from his caucus position after admitting that his assistant Matthew Johnston had conducted a convincing impersonation of him during a telephone interview broadcast on Vancouver radio station CKNW.

Jaffer was too busy to handle the interview as he was opening a coffee shop and asked Johnston (whom Jaffer knew could carry off a convincing impersonation of him) to stand in. Johnston is said to have developed this skill while handling phone calls on behalf of Jaffer. The radio station was not informed.

The deception was uncovered when a man rang the show that Johnston had spoken on and said it wasn't Jaffer's voice [42].

[edit]

Political decoys in fiction

For many years, the story of The Bisley Boy tempted people into believing that Queen Elizabeth I was really a man. According to the legend, the Queen (then a mere princess) had died aged 12 while staying at Berkeley Castle, Gloucestershire. Her minders, terrified of the retribution of her father, Henry VIII, made a substitution. A lookalike boy from the nearby village of Bisley was put in Elizabeth's place and sworn to secrecy. This legend 'explained' why Elizabeth never married or had children. In fact, the tale had been invented as a joke by a local clergyman in the 1800s [43].

In the last episode of Blackadder II, Queen Elizabeth I is indeed replaced with a man. She is poisoned (along with the rest of the cast) and 'doubled' by the evil Prince Ludwig the Indestructible of Bavaria, a master of disguise.

Anthony Hope's 1894 novel The Prisoner of Zenda is an adventure story about a man who has to impersonate a king, who he happens to closely resemble, when the king is abducted by enemies on the eve of his coronation.

In 1962, a Scottish newspaper, the Aberdeen Evening Express, accidentally used a picture of Prime Minister Alec Douglas-Home over a caption naming a Scottish Baillie called Vass. Private Eye magazine then affected to believe that Home was an impostor whom the newspaper had unmasked, and the magazine maintained this position until Home's death in 1995.

In Jack Higgins's book The Eagle Has Landed (made into a movie in 1976), German paratroopers try to kidnap Prime Minister Winston Churchill from a tiny English village in 1943. It is later revealed that Churchill was elsewhere, and a political decoy was visiting the village.

Lawrence Smythe ("The Great Lorenzo") was in Robert A. Heinlein's science fiction book Double Star (1956) hired to impersonate the politician and System Prime Minister Joseph Bonforte who had been injured in an attack by political opponents. Eventually Bonforte died and Smythe had to keep on playing the role of president, the travesty having only been discovered by the Emperor of the Solar System when "Bonforte" failed to customarily scold him for his passion for model trains.

The 1993 film Dave featured a look-alike who is hired to impersonate the President of the United States, initially to give the President a chance to engage in a tryst, but later on an ongoing basis after the President suffers a stroke and is left in a persistent vegetative state.

Sabé, a character in Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace, played by Keira Knightley, is a political decoy for Padmé Amidala, then Queen Amidala, played by Natalie Portman. Sabé is the queen's most important handmaiden. She is the first in line to become the decoy queen in times of danger. She looks quite similar to the real queen; even more so when she hides her features with the queen's trademark white makeup. Amidala has coached Sabé in regal bearing and speech. In Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones, Sabé has been replaced with a new decoy, Cordé, who is killed in an attempt on Padmé's life.

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