Stand by for a torrent of slobbering stories about Robert F. Kennedy as the 50th anniversary of his assassination approaches Wednesday.
The main speaker at the official ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery will be Bill Clinton. I kid you not – Bill Clinton!
Look, of course it’s terrible that RFK was murdered at the age of 42, leaving behind all those kids and Ethel pregnant with the last of them. But since his passing, there’s been even more historical revisionism about Bobby than with almost any of the other liberal icons.
So, as the gushing from his fawning biographers like Comrade Chris Matthews of MSNBC begins, let’s remember a few things about St. Bobby.
First of all, he was not going to be elected president in 1968. Vice President Hubert Humphrey had an insurmountable lead for the Democrat nomination.
Another fact: Before Teddy got kicked out of Harvard for cheating, Bobby was getting expelled from Portsmouth Priory for… cheating. It’s a family tradition.
More facts: As attorney general in 1963, RFK authorized the FBI bugs on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. That’s why he lost the Oregon primary just before he was assassinated. Hoover dropped a dime on him, although of course Bobby had had his reasons for signing off on that earlier FBI Spygate.
Hoover had just killed a Senate investigation into one of JFK’s favorite White House hookers, an alleged East German spy named Ellen Rometsch, and… well, one hand washes the other in the Deep State, then as now.
Despite all the millions of gallons of ink that have been spilled about his “growth” and “evolution” in the groovy Sixties, Bobby was indisputably a homophobe and an anti-Semite. From Roy Cohn to Bayard Rustin to J. Edgar Hoover, he really despised gays. As for Jews, Bobby took after his dear old dad, big time. Joe called him a “hater,” and the old man was a guy who described Jews as “pants pressers,” among many, many other slurs.
Then there’s Bobby’s reputation as a “good family man.” But he caught the “adultery virus,” as his brother-in-law Peter Lawford put it, from JFK. When the Soviet Union fell, one of the documents discovered in the KGB archives was a note about asking for a woman to be sent up to his hotel room during a visit to Moscow in 1956.
But the one name you’re never going to hear or read anywhere else in the next 72 hours is Marilyn Monroe. She was originally JFK’s girlfriend and the president passed her down to Bobby.
In 1962, Bobby was assigned to arrange for her to sing at JFK’s 45th birthday fundraiser at Madison Square Garden. Bobby called up the movie producer she was working for, a Jewish lawyer, and demanded she be given a couple of days off.
The executive balked, he later told Seymour Hersh, and Bobby reacted in his usual way.
“He called me a ‘Jew bastard’ and hung up the phone on me.”
By then, the blonde bombshell was falling apart and threatening to reveal all about how the Kennedys and their Mafia pals like Sam Giancana had been passing her around
Assorted unknown parties – the CIA? The FBI? The Teamsters? The Mob? — had planted bugs in her bungalow in Brentwood. She had a diary, a drug problem and few prospects. There were rumors of a pregnancy. It was a very big mess.
Bobby was in California the night Marilyn died. Many, including the former mayor of LA, said that RFK was in LA that night. Sam Yorty was videotaped for an ABC News special that was supposed to be broadcast in 1985. There were so many loose ends – the LAPD knew what had happened, and so the cop in charge of the investigation soon became director of security for the NFL. J. Edgar Hoover knew what had happened, so that Monday, in Seattle, RFK announced that the Director’s job was safe, even after he reached the mandatory retirement age of 70.
A year later, Bobby tried to shake hands with Marilyn’s ex-husband, Joe DiMaggio, at a Yankees’ oldtimers’ game. DiMaggio snubbed him. You can read all about in Gay Talese’s famous magazine piece about the Yankee Clipper.
Alas for Bobby, his minions were unable to grab all the tapes from the bugs inside Marilyn’s house. But the cops in New York confiscated them in 1966, and in 1968, after Bobby’s murder, even the New York Times had to report on the lawsuit the hired wire tapper had filed demanding return of ‘tapes and evidence concerning circumstances and causes of the death of Marilyn Monroe, which strongly suggests that the officially reported circumstances of her demise are erroneous.”
That 20/20 piece about Marilyn and the Kennedys would have been a ratings blockbuster for ABC. But the Kennedys killed it. One of the reporters working on it had been Geraldo Rivera, and he was quickly fired for “insubordination.”
Ten years later, on his own TV show, Geraldo interviewed Joe Kennedy’s niece, Kerry Kennedy McCarthy, and she told him why he’d been fired.
“Quite honestly, Geraldo,” she said, “you were a victim of the family… The family had become used to hearing the truth about Jack, but when it was Bobby….”
And now you know the rest of the story you won’t be hearing from Bill Clinton or anybody else this week.