The IRA Made A Gerry Adams Lookalike Switch Places Him In Prison
In addition to all the bombing they're known for, the Irish Republican Army would dabble in kidnapping. In the 1970s, leader Gerry Adams was arrested by the British. Pretty standard in the ongoing Troubles. Then the IRA found a guy in Belfast who looked exactly like Adams and decided to smuggle him into Northern Ireland's most impregnable jail, ominously called The Maze. There they'd make a swap and get their hero back.
Not thinking entirely stupidly, they did inform the real Adams about the plot. In preparation, he transformed his neatly groomed visage into shaggy hair and an unkempt beard. Other prisoners helped him out by constructing a similar-looking fake beard that they'd slap on the double upon the switch. There's something of a lack of creative crafting opportunities in prison.
Domer48/Wikimedia Commons"Could you add a handlebar mustache? I've always thought I'd look good in one."
Why would they need a fake beard if Adams was very real-bearded? Well, that's where it gets complicated. The plan was for Adams to secretly shave on the morning of the escape and then walk into a meeting room wearing the fake beard. He and the doppelganger would then switch beards and clothes, and Adams would walk out disguised as a lawyer. The plan went south because Gerry Adams' "Gerry Adams" disguise wasn't convincing enough.
While entering the meeting room, a guard noticed that Adams had a fake beard hooked over his ears. Sensing that this wasn't a sudden attack of alopecia, he raised the alarm, and the real Adams was nabbed in the parking lot. It must have been an awkward day on the yard when Adams surely confronted his fellow inmates with a sarcastic, "Sure, Gerry, we can totally make a realistic fake beard, Gerry," and possibly for the first time, a bunch of hardened felons had to feel bad about their thread skills.
A Secret Society Staged A Bloody Campaign To Force Brazil To Pretend Japan Didn't Lose World War II
If you were a Japanese-Brazilian, 1946 was a hell of a year. The Allies had surrendered unconditionally after a secret Japanese super-bomb wiped out 100,000 American soldiers in an instant, General MacArthur was on trial for war crimes, and Japanese troops were marching unopposed from San Francisco to Washington. Brazil had surrendered too, and a prince was on his way to take control of the government.
At least 16 Japanese-Brazilians were murdered by secret assassination squads for suggesting that this was anything other than fact. Over 30 others were injured, while numerous farms and businesses were torched. And that's just the stuff that was reported to the police; the real numbers are believed to be much higher.