By Dick Lehr, Gerard O'Neill
John Connolly and James “Whitey” Bulger grew up jointly at the tricky streets of South Boston. many years later within the mid-1970s, they met back. via then, Connolly used to be an immense determine within the FBI’s Boston workplace and Whitey had turn into godfather of the Irish Mob. Connolly had an concept, a scheme that would deliver Bugler into the FBI fold and John Connolly into the Bureau’s gigantic leagues. yet Bulger had different plans. quickly to be a big movie starring Johnny Depp as Whitey Bulger, Black Mass is the chilling actual tale of what occurred among them—a darkish deal that spiraled uncontrolled, resulting in drug dealing, racketeering, and homicide.
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Additional resources for Black Mass: Whitey Bulger, the FBI, and a Devil's Deal
And it wasn’t just Southie: Boston’s economy had calcified, and well into the 1940s, the formative years for the Bulger boys and John Connolly, the city was a hapless backwater down on its luck. Its office buildings were short and dreary, and its prospects were dim. Income was down, taxes were up, and business was lethargic. The legacy of a ruling oligarchy of Brahmins who lost their verve afflicted the city. The dynamic Yankees of the nineteenth century had given way to suburban bankers indifferent to downtown, a generation of cautious coupon clippers who nurtured trust funds instead of forging new businesses.
Fists began flying. King had Bulger down and was pounding away on him when others finally pulled him off. Payback for Bulger came November 5, 1975. No doubt buoyed by the secret knowledge the FBI would always be looking to curry favor with him, Bulger, Flemmi, and an associate jumped King. The longshoreman vanished from Southie and the world. Not surprisingly, Bulger mentioned none of this in his meetings with Connolly; instead, one of Bulger’s first reports was that the Irish gang unrest and bloodshed supposedly pending between Winter Hill and the Mafia had fizzled—much ado about nothing.
The deal was that simple: Bulger should use the FBI to eliminate his Mafia rivals. And if that alone wasn’t reason enough, the FBI wouldn’t be looking to take Bulger himself down if he were cooperating. In fact, at that moment other FBI agents were sniffing around and making inquiries 1610391092-text_Lehr design 3/15/12 1:47 PM Page 15 1975 15 into Bulger’s loan-sharking operations. Come aboard, Connolly said. We’ll protect you, he promised—just as Rico had promised Flemmi before him. Bulger was clearly intrigued.