Declassified FBI files have revealed a possible plot to assassinate Queen Elizabeth II during her 1983 visit to California.
The potential threat followed a phone call made by “a man who claimed his daughter had been killed in Northern Ireland by a rubber bullet”, according to the document, which also refers to a pub frequented by IRA sympathizers.
The Queen and her husband, Prince Philip, visited the West Coast of the United States in February and March 1983, and the trip passed without incident.
Four years earlier in 1979, IRA gunmen opposed to British rule in Northern Ireland had killed Louis Mountbatten, the last colonial ruler of India and uncle of Philip, in a bomb attack.
The document stated that the man claimed he was going to try to harm the Queen “by throwing some objects from the Golden Gate Bridge at the royal yacht when it passed under the bridge.”
A separate document dated 1989 noted that while the FBI was not aware of any specific threat against the Queen, “the potential for threats against the British monarchy has always existed from the IRA”.
The queen, who died last September at the age of 96, had previously announced that she had been the target of several assassination plots.
In 1970, IRA sympathizers made a failed attempt to derail her train west of Sydney, and in 1981, the same organization tried to kill her with a bomb during a visit to Shetland, off the northeast coast of Scotland.
In the same year, a mentally ill teenager fired a shot into the Queen’s car during a visit to New Zealand. Also, a teenager fired six bullets at her during a Royal Guard parade in central London.