Blackmail is strictly a vehicle of coercion. The practise is itself repulsive but the ramifications that surround it are even graver. People who practise blackmail are like dope addicts -the disease is progressive. If, for example blackmail does not fulfil the desired consequences, murder is the natural follow up. The failed attempt to blackmail and coerce Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., prompted his murder. The failure to blackmail or to manipulate the Kennedys towards a specific policy direction, made it clear in the "one track mind" of the zealot, that murder was the only way to deal with them. In particular, Hoover's obsession to control people and their ideas had in fact made targets out of the most prominent people in America. They were not all blackmail victims in the literal sense of the word, but they were all victims of the obsessive campaign to control public opinion. Political adversaries made ideal blackmail targets because politicians are deemed to be publicly accountable and are consequently more susceptible to the effort to publicly embarrass them. To be sure, when the blackmail charges are extremely frivolous and evidently fraudulent, the effort ultimately fails, even though the allegations linger and often assume a "second life" when they are exploited by publicity-seeking scavengers who embellish sensational lies. The insidious effort to control through blackmail is not very effective against prominent targets like Ernest Hemingway who were not easily intimidated, and the obsession to control them progressively escalated to the point where the "target" was murdered. To be sure, public ignorance records the "fact" that Hemingway committed suicide. Regardless, there is not a single shred of credible evidence to suggest that Hemingway did in fact kill himself. Ernest Hemingway was a persistent target of Hoover's FBI since at least 1940 when Hoover was infuriated over what he saw as unwarranted intrusion into his exclusive right to spy. In 1940, Hemingway had organized a private spy network in Cuba to gather information about Nazi sympathizers, in effort to undermine Hitler's war. Hemingway called his anti-Nazi operation the Crook Factory, and Hoover's repeated, failed attempts to close down the operation invariably fanned his paranoia. The "infallible" Director was not used to being denied, and Hemingway was consequently viewed to be a powerful adversary who was feared as much as he was despised. The 124-page FBI file on Hemingway reflects the fear, the paranoia and the zeal to control the famous writer who was treated like a dangerous adversary. Hemingway's FBI file "showed that the Bureau resented his amateur but alarming intrusion into their territory; that it unsuccessfully attempted to control, mock and vilify him; that it feared his personal prestige and political power."1 Hoover's relentless efforts to discredit Hemingway reflects the paranoia of a dangerous demagogue who was unable and unwilling to leave his target alone. In 1942, J. Edgar Hoover wrote: "Any information which you have relating to the unreliability of Ernest Hemingway as an informant may be discreetly brought to the attention of the Ambassador Braden. In this respect it will be recalled that recently Hemingway gave information concerning the refuelling of submarines in Caribbean waters which has proved unreliable." Just two days after dismissing Hemingway as "unreliable" Hoover wrote: "[Hemingway's] judgment is not of the best, and if his sobriety is the same as it was some years ago, that is certainly questionable".2 In contrast to Hoover's frivolous, malicious and relentless efforts to dismiss Hemingway's entire life by claiming that he was absolutely nothing beyond an unreliable, pathetic drunk with the proclivity to support Communist causes, Hemingway's characterization of Hoover's FBI has proven to be entirely accurate. In 1950, when Most Americans were still having a love-in with the Director and his so-called infallible FBI, Hemingway said that Hoover's FBI was antiliberal, pro-Fascist and dangerous of developing into an American Gestapo."3 In retrospect, Hemingway's assessment was absolutely reliable. Watergate burglar Gordon Liddy, who joined the FBI in 1957, is certainly a living embodiment of the fact that Hoover's FBI was essentially "America's Gestapo." Indeed, the evidence is so clear and beyond dispute that one does not even need to make any inferences or assumptions. All one has to do, is to quote Gordon Liddy himself. Liddy's FBI training led him to develop the belief that he belonged to an elite corps of agents whose duty it was to save America from all form of subversion -real or imagined and J. Edgar Hoover was the supreme dictator who spearheaded the national security-motivated war. In the words of Gordon Liddy: "As Adolph Hitler was referred to throughout the Third Reich as simply der Fuhrer, so J. Edgar Hoover was referred to throughout the FBI as the Director." As Hoover storm trooper, Gordon Liddy was prepared to do whatever was deemed to be necessary, to satisfy der Fuhrer. Indeed, discussion about the liquidation of political enemies was entertained as casually as most people talk about the weather. The following Liddy narrative reflects the sinister murder plots that tyrannical intelligence spooks like J. Edgar Hoover were prone to embrace:
I urged as the logical and just solution that the target [Jack Anderson] be killed. Quickly. My suggestion was received with immediate acceptance, almost relief, as if they were just waiting for someone else to say for them what was really on their minds. There followed a lengthy discussion of the ways and means to accomplish the task best. Hunt [former CIA agent who has been linked as a co-conspirator in the Kennedy assassination] still enamoured of the LSD approach asked Dr. Gunn [a physician retired from the CIA known for his "unorthodox application of medical and chemical knowledge"] whether a massive dose might not cause such disruption of motor function that the driver of the car would lose control of it and crash. [like Kennedy's car at Chappaquiddick, the event that, according to Nixon, "would undermine Kennedy's role as a leader of the opposition to the administration's policies.]4 Dr. Gunn repeated his earlier negative advice on the use of LSD. Besides, though LSD can be absorbed through the skin, our hypothetical target might be wearing gloves against the winter cold, or be chauffeur-driven. The use of LSD was, finally dismissed. Hunt's suggestion called to Dr. Gunn's mind a technique used successfully abroad. It involved catching the target's moving automobile in a sharp turn or sharp curve and hitting it with another car on the outside rear quarter. According to Dr. Gunn, if the angle of the blow and the relative speeds of the two vehicles were correct, the target vehicle would flip over, crash, and usually burn.5
Liddy goes on and on talking about all kinds of different ways to murder people and about illegal FBI operations which were always staged in a manner that made it appear as though the FBI was absolutely blameless. Indeed J. Edgar Hoover routinely authorized criminal activity like illegal surveillance, mail openings, unauthorized bugging, illegal wiretaps, break-ins and murder -and it was all successfully covered up through the overriding obsession to avoid discovery. Gordon Liddy embodies the fact that murder was the ultimate consequence of Hoover's obsession to control a particular target, and like all illegal FBI activity, it was done in a manner that "proved" that it was not the fault of the FBI. Ernest Hemingway was precocious enough to characterize the murderous capacity of Hoover's FBI, but he was ignored and at least four decades ahead of his time -we are still just beginning to appreciate the significance of Hoover-directed tyranny. Would-be assassins like Gordon Liddy should certainly erase every single shred of doubt about the fact that J. Edgar Hoover cultivated and worked with murderers. To be sure, Gordon Liddy has never been prosecuted for murder, but like Al Capone who was also accomplished in the art of covering up criminal operations, allegations of murder follow him as closely as is evidently warranted. According to Washington attorney Bernard Fensterwald: "G. Gordon Liddy has been reliably linked to two separate alleged murder plans during his work for Nixon's top aides, and one other actual completed murder, during his previous FBI service."6 When Liddy became Nixon's crony and the cosy relationship between Hoover and the Nixon White House soured, Liddy and his faithful Cuban partners in crime were responsible for break-ins at Hoover's apartment and "a poison of the thyon-phosphate genre was placed on Hoover's personal toilet articles."7 The poison induces fatal heart attacks. Howard Hunt had indicated that he had been ordered to kill Anderson with an untraceable poison and while the scheme was dropped, the simple fact that zealots with a proclivity to commit politically motivated murder had access to such diabolical resources, is in itself revolting.
If the implications of the sinister dimension of Hoover's FBI are not acknowledged, it is not possible to realistically assess the actual substance of the relationship between Hoover and Hemingway. There is in fact a huge gaping omission in the historical record because deception, denial, fraud and evasion has too often provided the opportunity to cover up Hoover sponsored crime. Moreover, the common tendency to ignore the significance of Hoover's ferocious, anti-Hemingway crusade certainly dulls the prospect of reconstructing the elusive truth. In retrospect, it is impossible to ignore the fact that the extreme hostility between Hoover and Hemingway drew battle lines which were clearly defined and courted predictable casualties. In particular, Hemingway despised and opposed the McCarthy-style persecutions that Hoover secretly supported, criticized the practise of using the FBI to harass American citizens without justification and was predictably "exiled" for vigorously condemning the tyranny that Hoover promoted and encouraged.
Quoted in Look in May of 1954, when McCarthy was at the height of his power, Hemingway said that there is nothing "wrong with Senator Joseph McCarthy of Wisconsin that a .577 solid would not cure". McCarthy and Hoover evidently incited the worst and destroyed the best of everything they touched. Hemingway was not a gun-toting extremist. It was Hoover who induced that spirit. The frustration of being persecuted by Hoover's FBI had taken its toll as early as 1954, when FBI agents evidently shadowed Hemingway wherever he went. Recall that Frank Wilkinson, a relatively obscure target had as many as eight FBI agents tailing him -an internationally reputed author like Hemingway was invariably the victim of an equally outrageous degree of unwarranted, illegal surveillance. But despite the fact that he was a target of covert, illegal operations, Hemingway was provided no recourse to justice and could do very little beyond mock the "obtrusive, inescapable FBI men, pleasant and all trying to look so average, clean-cut-young-American that they stood out as clearly as though they had worn a bureau shoulder patch on their white linen or seersucker suits".8 Hoover used the "infallible" wing of the FBI to spy on Hemingway, and unbeknownst to agents who were simply following relatively innocuous instructions, they ultimately aided and abetted a murderer like J. Edgar Hoover. Clearly, when FBI agents placed Hemingway under surveillance to develop a derogatory profile, the plot to discredit Hemingway escalated from the effort to label him a drunk, a liar, and a Communist to the determination to declare him insane in order to justify his alleged suicide. FBI smear campaigns against Hemingway were extremely secretive because Hoover was afraid to confront him in public and public ignorance made it easy for him to promote the suggestion that Hemingway was paranoid. How, for example, could Hemingway convincingly claim that Hoover's FBI was America's Gestapo, when the FBI did not publicly demonstrate any interest in him? In the final analysis, it is the extreme secrecy that Hoover maintained which provided the opportunity to promote the claim that Hemingway was paranoid and unstable when in fact he was more reasonable and more perceptive than most. Critics who harp on common misrepresentations had a field day with the claim that Hemingway committed suicide, but they merely promoted common ignorance. Hoover had spent over a decade trying to convince anyone who would listen that Hemingway was unreliable, and it was only a matter of time before his relentless, illegal intrusions destroyed Hemingway. Having committed the unpardonable sin of challenging the infallible reputation of the FBI, Hemingway was clearly a priority target who was never without an FBI shadow, until the very day he was murdered or, as the official record dictates, "committed suicide".
In late 1960, when Hemingway arrived in New York, having left Cuba for the last time, Hemingway told his wife Mary: "They're tailing me out here already... Somebody waiting out there."9 Hoover's FBI was indeed always tailing Hemingway -a harassment that disturbed him so profoundly that he didn't even want to leave his small apartment. Hemingway's wife dismissed his legitimate concerns and developed the belief that he was "losing it". Ironically, it is the fact that Hemingway was perceptive enough to challenge unwarranted FBI surveillance which prompted the allegation that he was suffering from delusions, paranoia, fear of persecution -mental illness. In retrospect, it is the people who claimed that Hemingway was unstable who were ultimately deluded. Hoover's FBI in New York had nothing better to than to tail so-called Communist subversives and prominent adversaries like Hemingway were invariably smothered by overzealous FBI agents who thrived upon the opportunity to satisfy the Director's paranoia over public literary enemy number one. Hemingway's deepest and most disturbing fear concerning the FBI was well grounded, yet he was constantly branded paranoid whenever he exposed what was essentially the truth. Perfectly logical commentary like "nobody likes to be tailed... investigated, queried about, by any amateur detective no matter how scholarly or how straight", reflected legitimate frustrations not paranoia -frustrations that Hemingway had to deal with all by himself. Even his wife and his so-called friend Hotchner, who called him paranoid for simply because he acknowledged the obvious, and that ultimately made it easier for Hoover to persecute Hemingway. Determined to "prove" that Hemingway was unreliable, paranoid and delusionary, the secrecy that Hoover imposed ultimately granted the opportunity to exploit the ignorance of those who did not acknowledge the threat that Hoover's FBI posed. Mary and Hotchner certainly reflect the "blinders" that determined their perspectives:
Both Mary and Hotchner have said that Hemingway imagined he was being followed and spied on by FBI agents in Ketchum and in the Mayo Clinic, and that no kind of argument or evidence could change his mind or alleviate his irrational but quite terrifying fear. Mary and Hotchner thought his fear of the FBI meant that he was losing touch with reality and heading for a mental breakdown -[all music to Hoover's ears]10
Hemingway, who was invariably always followed by Hoover's FBI, has been posthumously vindicated. Hemingway wasn't paranoid. Hotchner and Mary were ignorant.
In 1960, suffering from high blood pressure, liver and kidney diseases and haemochromatosis, a rare, chronic form of diabetes, Hemingway sought medical treatment to relieve his physical ailments. Hemingway was not, as has been frequently suggested, a psychiatric patient. Having endured a liver malady since 1937, Hemingway had given up drinking on the advice of his doctor, but by 1960, his worsening condition prompted the need for further medical attention. Thus, on November 30, 1960, Hemingway entered the Mayo clinic and hoped to return home by Christmas. Knowing that the FBI was monitoring every move that he made, Hemingway sought to enter the Mayo clinic under an assumed name to keep his visits to the Mayo a secret, but despite Hemingway's expressed orders, Dr. Rome, a psychiatrist at the Mayo Clinic, violated Hemingway's right to privacy. The FBI was carefully monitoring Hemingway's treatment at the Mayo clinic and "a letter from special agent in Minneapolis to J. Edgar Hoover on January 13, 1960 reported that Hemingway had secretly entered the Mayo Clinic and the FBI knew about his treatment." Indeed "the FBI had, in fact, tracked Hemingway to the walls of the Mayo Clinic and discussed his case with his psychiatrist."11 Dr. Rome was evidently cooperating more with Hoover's FBI and not at all, to the concerns of Ernest Hemingway. This direct, unethical violation of Hemingway's rights and expressed orders is directly responsible for his murder. At the Mayo Clinic, instead of treating the physical ailments that concerned him, Hemingway was given a series of electric shocks to the brain. Electro-convulsive therapy was the best-known treatment for hopeless psychiatric patients, it was not a cure for liver disease. It was, above all, an extreme, illegal, perverted effort to induce a stubborn non-conformist to become the docile and passive FBI cheerleader that Hoover demanded.
Prior to having received shock therapy at the Mayo, Hemingway had never attempted suicide and had never sought out or received psychiatric treatment. Moreover, there is no credible evidence to suggest that he required a treatment as harmful and as controversial as shock therapy. When medical experts like Dr. Bonnie Burstow, an outspoken critic of ECT, describes the treatment, it sounds like the entire procedure was the ideal behaviour modification tool that Hoover spent a life time seeking to acquire. According to Dr. Burstow:
Why am I opposed to shock treatment... To begin with, because of what it is, intrinsically a brain damaging treatment. To understand this, it is important to know how the treatment works. Shock treatment is one in which sufficient electricity is passed through the brain to produce a grand mal seizure, thereby resulting in cell death. This is what it does; this is all it does. Brain damage, to be clear, is not a side-effect of shock treatment. It is the primary effect.12
Moreover, there is absolutely no reliable evidence to even remotely suggest that Hemingway would ever submit to such a radical method of treatment. On the contrary, his lifelong scorn of psychiatrists coupled with his assertion that his analyst was "portable Corona No. 3", strongly suggests that the treatment that he received at the Mayo Clinic, a direct violation of everything that Hemingway believed in, was as improper and as unethical as aiming a gun at his head and pulling the trigger. If Hemingway cooperated with Dr. Rome, it was probably because, as Anthony Burgess has indicated, Dr. Rome "was a psychiatrist but did not present himself as one."13
In retrospect, the fact that J. Edgar Hoover exploited the prestige of the FBI and used the behavioral sciences to control people like Hemingway, is not at all surprising. Given Hoover's paranoia and obsessions, it is not unreasonable to assume that there exists a closet full of controversial "suicide" cases which reflect Hoover's tendency to use the influence of his "infallible" FBI to enlist the services of unsuspecting or sympathetic professionals, in his private, covert war against domestic "subversives". The two most common cases which evidently reflect Hoover-sponsored tampering are Dr. Rome who treated Hemingway and Dr. Greenson, who treated Marylin Monroe. Hoover had essentially cultivated the extraordinary capacity to "dictate individual sanity" and that evidently intoxicated Hoover with the sense that his power was absolutely divine. Indeed, when Martin Luther King, Jr., became his priority target, Hoover's FBI actually sought to induce him into committing suicide. The astounding arrogance of the belief that Hoover's FBI could simply will King into committing suicide by promoting the belief that the civil rights champion was perverse and mentally unstable, is evidently an astonishing insight into what Hoover's FBI deemed possible -like the capacity to prompt the "suicide" of Hemingway. The bizarre plot to provoke the "suicide" of King had to be linked to previous wars like the Hemingway "suicide" -it just doesn't make sense in isolation. But if Hoover could make Hemingway kill himself, why couldn't he attempt to do the same to King? In the final analysis, the missing ingredient in the attempt to cause King's suicide was a "politically reliable" Doctor who could be prevailed upon to manipulate King and to maintain the level of secrecy that Hoover demanded. Indeed, without Dr. Rome, Hoover could not have possibly prompted Hemingway's "suicide" because he would have been denied the opportunity to exploit the influence of the "behavioral sciences" in the ongoing effort to "prove" that Hemingway was insane. The cooperative, extremely secretive relationship between Dr. Rome and Hoover's FBI, ultimately determined that Hemingway was hopelessly insane. In the midst of it all, secrecy is ultimately responsible for the perverted plots that were orchestrated. Secrecy provided J. Edgar Hoover the opportunity to recruit "politically reliable" doctors who did little beyond perform what they saw as their patriotic duty by taking Hoover's FBI at face value. Secrecy provided Dr. Rome the opportunity to zap Hemingway's brain with electric currents while he slept, and secrecy provided J. Edgar Hoover the opportunity to cover it all up. In retrospect, the aura of secrecy which surrounds the treatment of Hemingway is repugnant. Dr. Rome conveniently claimed patient/client privilege and refused to talk but he was evidently quite comfortable talking to Hoover's FBI about Hemingway. At the same time Doctor Rome has the shameless audacity to hide behind the censorship refrain: "I've made it practice never ever to reveal any of my contacts with Mr. Hemingway because I gave him my word when he was my patient."14 It all sounds very ethical, but under the circumstances, an orchestrated cover up is the only rational explanation which accounts for the extreme secrecy. Psychiatrist Irvin D. Yalom made a futile effort to uncover the truth, but "gag orders" effectively denied the opportunity to penetrate all the deception. Doctor Irvin D. Yalom is as specific as Rome is evasive. According to Yalom:
I attempted to interview Howard Rome, the psychiatrist who treated Hemingway in his final depression but he informed me, with a finger across his mouth, that before treating Hemingway he had been obliged to promise that his lips would be forever sealed.15
How convenient. Here you have the murder of an internationally celebrated genius and Doctor Rome's "lips were sealed". At the same time, while Doctor Rome distorts the truth through his refusal to tell it, he belittles the opinions of psychiatrists through arrogant commentary like "That's his opinion", and "I don't know that Dr. Robitscher ever saw Mr. Hemingway", and having been told that he had not, he pompously added, "Then that's his opinion, gratuitously."16/a> In actual fact, even if Dr. Robitscher had tried to see Hemingway before his death, he would have been denied access, and in that respect, Dr. Rome is not at all authoritative, just evasive. Indeed, even Hemingway's friend, Winston Guest, was denied access to Hemingway. According to Mr. Guest:
I knew he'd gone to a hospital, but I was very naive about it; I didn't know how ill he was. I'll never forget finding out who was the top psychiatrist at the hospital and I called him and said I wanted to talk to Ernest. I told him who I was. The doctor said practically, "Are you mad? Are you crazy? You can't talk to him at all." So then I guessed he must have been seriously ill, mentally ill. And I never saw him again after that."17
Mr. Guest illustrates the ease in which the assumption that Hemingway was insane was, without good cause or authority, matter-of-factly accepted. A more scrupulous analysis, offered by author Jeffrey Meyers, effectively challenged the credibility of the erroneous assertion that Hemingway was insane and highlights the simple fact that Hemingway was essentially murdered through shock therapy when he said:
For some people, yes [shock therapy is an effective treatment]. But when it didn't work with Hemingway the first time they tried it a second time. And when it didn't work a second time, they tried it a third time. Rome should have gotten the picture that with this patient it's not working. He just had one way of doing everything. If somebody came in to Rome with cancer or a hang nail, he'd probably get shock treatment. 18
When author Denis Brian asked Doctor Rome to justify repeated shock therapy treatment, he predictably said: "Unless you know the whole content of what he had... But I choose not to talk about that."19
To talk about the "whole content," Ernest Hemingway was obsessed by the incredible passion to live -he even gave up drinking for it. In fact, throughout his life, he repeatedly equated the act of committing suicide with cowardice, and one would really have to stretch the imagination to suggest that Hemingway was a coward. Indeed, the very thought of what he perceived to be a cowardly act like suicide repulsed Hemingway and in 1935, he clearly exposed his unequivocal, anti-suicide "crusade" when he wrote:
My father was a coward. He shot himself without necessity. At least I thought so. I had gone through it myself until I figured it in my head. I knew what it was to be a coward and what it was to cease being a coward. Now, truly, in actual danger I felt a clean feeling as in a shower. Of course it was easy now. That was because I no longer cared what happened. I knew it was better to live it so that if you died you had done everything that you could do about your work and your enjoyment of life up to that minute, reconciling the two, which is very difficult. 20
Having equated the act of suicide to cowardice, Hemingway was effectively immune. The ending of A Farewell to Arms, rewritten seventy times, reflects Hemingway's general philosophy:
He has the most profound bravery that it has ever been my privilege to see... He has had pain, ill-health, and the kind of poverty that you don't believe-the kind of which actual hunger is the attendant; he has had about eight times the normal allotment of responsibilities. And he has never compromised. He has never turned off an easier path than the one he staked himself. It takes courage.21
In the final analysis, the claim that Hemingway committed suicide is patently absurd. Hemingway was in fact the last person in the world who can credibly be called suicidal. Even despair, which is commonly used to justify suicide, was a hurdle that motivated Hemingway to strive to become the very best that he could possibly be. In a letter to Scott Fitzgerald in 1934 Hemingway essentially exposed the motivation that made him both a great writer and an unlikely suicide victim, when her wrote:
We are all bitched from the start and you especially have to hurt like hell before you can write seriously. But when you get the damned hurt use it -don't cheat with it. Be as faithful to it as a scientist. 22
Despair was never a serious obstacle, it is actually what made Hemingway put pen to paper. Living through his work, Hemingway retained his zest to live and to write for as long as he was not the victim of shock therapy. That became quite obvious in February of 1961, [after shock therapy treatment] when Hemingway tried to pen a few words to commemorate the newly inaugurated President John F. Kennedy. The month previous, he had been cheered by the invitation to be at the inauguration but he was too ill to attend. And so he continued to try to pen just a few words. Hours latter, the paper was still blank. J. Edgar Hoover had finally destroyed Hemingway's capacity to think and to write. Just a few words, any school child, gifted or not, could pen just a few words. Hemingway, the literary genius, father of A Farewell to Arms and For Whom the Bell Tolls could not pen just a few words. Hemingway was dead.
It had taken a long time for Hoover to determine how to deal with a popular dissenter like Hemingway without arousing suspicion and he had finally figured it out. In retrospect, it was all a typically perverted J. Edgar Hoover plot -it was the most bizarre, unbelievable exploitation of power imaginable. The golden rule of pre-watergate, mainstream America was to obey and not to question authority and that gave Hoover's highly trusted FBI agents an extraordinary degree of power. But in the context of the abuse of power that Hoover practised, FBI agents were essentially spies who provided Hoover the opportunity to target and to scheme the murder of his enemies. Indeed, even unsuspecting FBI informants like Ronald Reagan, who spied on his fellow co-workers in hollywood and branded them Communists, ultimately furthered the perverse ends of J. Edgar Hoover. In the final analysis, the evil inherent in spying on law abiding citizens is clear. History clearly records the fact that there is very little, if any distinction between politically motivated spying and counselling to commit murder, and intelligence agencies and their informants have established an extremely deplorable record of criminal culpability. Indeed, throughout North America, the most enduring legacy that intelligence agencies have established on the domestic front is a record of excessive, unmerited use of covert action. The tragic, senseless murder of Ernest Hemingway is just one of countless cases where targets of illegal surveillance were exterminated like flies. The only reason that we can determine what happened to Hemingway is because he was famous enough for people to have written books about him. The others, relative unknowns, were even easier to victimize through the power of secrecy. A staged suicide, a staged burglary, a staged car accident or any other perverted scheme that lurks in the minds of the Gordon Liddy's and the Howard Hunt's of this world should be exposed by the vast resources of the intelligence community, they should not be facilitated.
Like Hemingway, Marilyn Monroe was also a victim of Hoover's McCarthyite witch hunts. Since 1956, when Marilyn Monroe's husband, playwright Arthur Miller, was hauled before the Un-American Activities Committee to purge his so-called Communist associations, Monroe developed a serious hatred for Committee supporters like Richard Nixon and J. Edgar Hoover and she didn't hesitate to make her views known. Like Hemingway who had lashed out at McCarthy, Monroe was livid with anger and in 1958, she blasted:
Some of those bastards in Hollywood wanted me to drop Arthur. Said it would ruin my career. They're born cowards and want you to be like them. One reason I want to see Kennedy win is that Nixon's associated with that whole scene.23
Red-baiting zealots disturbed and angered Monroe and it was her hatred of anti-Communist rabble-rousers like Hoover and Nixon, that drove her towards the Kennedy camp. Hoover considered Marilyn Monroe to be a serious threat to the national security of the United States, and she certainly fanned his paranoia in 1960 when she became a sponsor of SANE, the Committee for a Sane Nuclear Policy. Clearly, as far as Hoover was concerned, Monroe was a certifiable Communist -her strong feelings for civil rights, for black equality and for peace, was in fact the so-called un-American agenda that Hoover violently opposed. In retrospect, the battle lines were very clearly defined. Demagogues like Hoover and Nixon manufactured, encouraged and exploited un-American hysteria while reasonable people were repulsed by what was clearly an ignorant witch hunt. Even the eminent British historian, Professor Arnold Toynbee, ridiculed the Cold War tendency to bully the individual through what he called "mass opinion", and like John F. Kennedy who discredited Cold War epithets, Professor Toynbee ridiculed the very word "Un-American" when he said:
This word "Un-American!" -the Committee on Un-American Activities. A Committee on "Un-British Activities" for the British Parliament would be so laughable it could not be done. Or can you imagine a "Committee against Un-French Activities?"24
Most Americans shared the belief that Un-American witch hunt strangled individual hope and freedom, and in 1983, Gloria Steinhem essentially assessed the damage when she said:
It was [Kennedy's Presidency] the last time in my life that the majority views of the country have been connected to the government. 25
Indeed, in the 1960's, "the majority views of the country" were violently opposed and the diabolical plots of a national security-motivated minority determined the course of American politics. Innocent victims like Marylin Monroe were caught in a political crossfire. The political volatility of the 1950's and 1960's certainly dominated and claimed both the life and the death of Marilyn Monroe. The House on Un-American activities was not a local, Washington witch hunt -it was a phenomenon that had even divided hollywood into two hostile camps that saw self-proclaimed anti-Communists on the right, identifying, blacklisting and harassing anyone who was deemed to be an agent of Communism. J. Edgar Hoover was particularly obsessed by the struggle in hollywood because he believed that Communists were trying to infiltrate the movie industry and he certainly was not about to let that happen. Astoundingly, just like anti-Castro operations in Cuba, the interests of J. Edgar Hoover and the Mafia converged in hollywood as well. The secret war to dominate the hollywood industry was also a preoccupation of L.A. mobsters like Mickey Cohen who made a career out of exploiting hollywood stars like Marilyn Monroe. Blackmailing movie stars by threatening to expose their secret sexual liaisons, Cohen arranged for the lovemaking of his targets to be surreptitiously filmed and recorded. Johnny Roselli, who shared the interest in "carving out" a piece of hollywood for the Mafia, was Giancana's hollywood representative, and that placed Monroe's blackmail potential in a new perspective. Marilyn Monroe, who was acquainted with the Kennedys and Mafia predators like Johnny Roselli, was natural "bait" in the desperate, obsessive campaign to blackmail the Kennedy's.
And so when rumors about affairs between the Kennedys and Marilyn Monroe began to fly, it is not surprising to note that the source of these groundless allegations was none other than Hoover's Mafia friends. On August 1, 1962, just three days before Marilyn Monroe was murdered, FBI transcripts record Mafia Mogul Meyer Lansky discussing the obviously fabricated claim that Robert Kennedy was having an affair with Marilyn Monroe. Indeed, FBI microphones [that the shrewd Lansky was obviously tipped off about] recorded Meyer Lansky and his wife, and the following "incriminating" FBI document, dated August 11, 1962, was produced in a deliberate, futile attempt to embarrass the Kennedys.
A highly confidential source [bug] covering the residence of notorious hoodlum, Meyer Lansky, at Hallandale Florida, recently furnished information to the effect that Lansky made an allegation that Attorney General Robert Kennedy is carrying on an affair with an El Paso, Texas girl. The source indicated that Lansky was alone with his wife and began a discussion of the Attorney General, mentioning that the latter has seven children but is carrying on the affair with the girl. Mrs. Lansky reportedly replied. "It's all [Frank Sinatra's] fault, he is nothing but a procurer of women for those guys. [Sinatra] is the guy who gets them all together." Lansky then replied to his wife, "It's not [Sinatra's] fault and it starts with the President and goes right down the line." We have received information from the highly confidential source [bug] or by other means that Lansky has not made this allegation to any other person... In view of the fact that this allegation involves the Attorney General and the President, I believe that it should be brought to the attention of the Attorney General. Because of the sensitive nature of this matter, I recommend that I be authorized to personally bring to the attention of the Attorney General upon his return to the city. [Hoover's handwritten notation: "Yes but make proper notation for files after you have done so."]26
J. Edgar Hoover obviously took great pleasure in documenting what is evidently a deliberately fabricated allegation and an FBI report dated August 20, 1962, reflects the incredible gap between the simple truth and the joint rumor that Hoover and the Mafia sponsored.
The Attorney General was contacted and advised of the information we had received alleging he was having an affair with a girl in El Paso. He said he had never been to El Paso, Texas, and there was no basis for the allegation. He said he appreciated our informing him of it; that being in public life the gossip mongers just had to talk. He said he was aware there had been several allegations concerning his possibly being involved with Marilyn Monroe. He said he had at least met Marilyn Monroe since she was a good friend of his sister, Pat Lawford, but these allegations just had a way of growing beyond any semblance of the truth.27
Indeed, instead of using FBI microphones to harass the Mafia or to protect John F. Kennedy from the highly circulated rumour that he was going to be shot, J. Edgar Hoover used them to record his Mafia friends spread fraudulent allegations about the Kennedys. In retrospect, the "embarrassing" FBI memo that sought to blackmail the Kennedys is pathetically transparent and the tendency to use American citizens like Marilyn Monroe as blackmail "bait" is extremely repugnant.
Entrapped by the FBI/Mafia zeal to exploit Marilyn Monroe, there was not a single move or a single phone call that the besieged actress could make without being the target of unwarranted surveillance. Surrounded by powerful, dangerous predators who destroyed everything they touched, Marylin Monroe was essentially the victim of an orchestrated massacre. When she died, J. Edgar Hoover immediately seized her phone records and the Mafia, suggesting that her murder had involved an extensive degree of pre-planned deliberation, began to divert attention away from the genuine circumstances surrounding her death as early as August 1, 1962, when Lansky and his wife used an FBI microphone to promote the alleged immorality of Robert Kennedy and Marilyn Monroe. In late July of 1962, the FBI was receiving calls about "gangiand types" who were plotting violence against the Kennedys -J. Edgar Hoover however was more interested in promoting staged Mafia recordings which fraudulently alleged sexual relations between Monroe and the Kennedys. Excessive secrecy has made it difficult to unravel the repugnant truth which surrounds the mysterious death of Marylin Monroe. Phyllis McGuire, who was one of Sam Giancana' 5 former mistresses, may enthusiastically promote the rumour that John and Robert Kennedy were both sleeping with Marylin Monroe, but when she is asked about what Giancana said about Marylin Monroe, she gets nervous and refuses to say anything.28 In retrospect, her willingness to promote rumour and to keep silent when it comes to exploring the genuine truth, is absolutely understandable. Monroe's mysterious death has all the earmarks of a national security-motivated murder, and like the Kennedy assassination conspiracy, the only way to determine any truth is to penetrate the motivation behind deliberate fraud and excessive censorship. According to Sam Giancana's nephew, "Sam Giancana accepted the contract to kill Marylin Monroe".29 If that explains McGuire's fear and silence, former FBI Assistant Director Courtney Evans shares the tendency to be evasive about volunteering the truth about Sam Giancana. According to Anthony Summers, who spoke to Courtney Evans:
He [courtney Evans] said to me, yes there was an attempt by organized crime to bring pressure on the Kennedys. And when I asked him to go into detail, he declined. He simply pointed me towards Sam Giancana.30
Anthony Summers claims that Marylin Monroe was having an affair with the Kennedys, but his tendency to give credence to the rumour that Hoover and the Mafia generated, devalues his conclusion. Responsible history and autobiography that meticulously explores the schedules of Marylin Monroe and the Kennedys records the fact that they could not have possibly been having an affair. Scholars like Athan Theoharis point to the evident fact that J. Edgar Hoover himself did not believe the rumours -indeed, how could he believe the fraudulent allegations that he had evidently helped to produce? In the words of Theoharis:
As far as J. Edgar Hoover was concerned, it is clear, there was no Kennedy-Monroe affair, and therefore no blackmailing the Kennedys on that score.31
And that takes us from the ostensible, to the real score -which was to cover up the truth about the murder of Marylin Monroe. When J. Edgar Hoover encouraged his agents to promote allegations like Kennedy Had Communists "Murder" Miss Monroe, and to document such propaganda in FBI memoranda, he was essentially intimidating the Kennedy Justice Department.32 In essence, the murderers were asserting their control of the Marylin Monroe murder investigation -they circulated all the rumours to preempt an independent inguiry. And since they controlled the "truth" about the death of Marylin Monroe, the subtle message to the Kennedy Justice Department was very clear -lay off or we'll implicate the Attorney General himself in the murder of Marylin Monroe.
When one disregards all the propaganda, one cannot escape the fact that the final days of Marylin Monroe's life were absolutely controlled by the Mafia, by Hoover's FBI and by Marylin's psychiatrist, Doctor Greenson. Doctor Greenson, a hollywood psychiatrist who was probably an FBI informant [in those days, if you had any sort of public profile which was prone to capture the attention of J. Edgar Hoover, you were either an FBI informant or an FBI critic, and Dr. Greenson was certainly not a critic], came to monopolize Monroe's life. Ultimately a pawn of Hoover's efforts to make anti-Communist hysteria the focus of life, Dr. Greenson was Marylin Monroe's "Doctor Rome." Indeed Marilyn Monroe came to rely so exclusively upon Doctor Greenson, that he controlled every area of her life. On his urging, Marilyn bought and moved into a house less than two miles from his. Greenson even provided a live-in housekeeper who oversaw every move that Marilyn made and reported every detail about her personal life to Dr. Greenson. Greenson controlled Marylin Monroe to the point where he isolated her from the people that she cared about and ultimately taught her to rely less on her own resources and more on those that he provided. Prior to her so-called suicide, Marylin Monroe practically lived with Dr. Greenson. Monroe was treated, not in a psychiatrist's office as most patients are but at Dr. Greenson's own house, on a daily basis. After her treatment she often stayed for dinner, and after dinner she stayed for drinks. Even the movies that Marylin was allowed to star in were controlled by Dr. Greenson. Philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre, for example, wanted Marylin Monroe to be the star of his screenplay, Ereud, which John Huston was about to make into a film, but Dr. Greenson objected, and Marylin Monroe, whom Sartre believed was "one of the greatest actresses alive", did not make that or any other film in l96l.33 The control that Marylin was subjected to was extremely oppressive. Every friend that Monroe had could not help but notice the fact that Dr. Greenson:
began to exert more and more control over her life, dictating who she should have for friends, whom she might visit and so forth. But she felt it was necessary to obey.34
Eunice Murray was placed in the homes of Dr Greenson' 5 most important clients as "monitor, companion and nursemaid", and according to Greenson's instructions, she was to obediently report every detail of his clients' private lives.35Pat Newcomb, who saw Murray tag along when she and Marilyn went shopping matter-of-factly dismissed the intrusive set up when she said:
It wasn't hard to understand. Eunice was simply Greenson's spy, sent down to report everything Marylin did. Soon even Marylin began to see this.36
What Newcomb could not see or understand however is that Dr Greenson evidently reported directly to Hoover's FBI. There is no uncensored FBI report which records this simple fact. The few FBI reports on Marylin Monroe which have been released for public scrutiny are evidently so incriminating that they are entirely censored. Every single word, except for the name Marylin Monroe, is covered by black ink. The obsessive cover up is entirely understandable. Hoover's FBI had branded Monroe a threat to the national security, and like Dr. Rome before him, Dr. Greenson was charged with the responsibility to control the threat. It all sounds so very stupid, but stupidity was the foundation of practically every operation that Hoover promoted.
Between July and August 4 when she died (police were not notified until August 5], Dr Greenson treated Marylin on twenty-eight separate occasions, according to his own records. And after this intensive psychiatric treatment, Dr. Greenson officially claimed that Marylin Monroe committed suicide. Jack Clemmons, the first police officer on the scene immediately determined that the so-called suicide scene looked more staged than real and the testimony of Dr. Greenson and Marylin's housekeeper, Eunice Murray was more evasive than believable. Indeed, the entire discovery and reporting of Marylin's murder was bizarre. Eunice Murray allegedly discovered Marylin's lifeless body and instead of contacting the police, she obediently called Doctor Greenson and he did not call the police until at least four and a half hours after the body was allegedly discovered. The phoney suicide verdict that Greenson promoted to account for the death of Marylin Monroe was flatly disputed by former Police Sergeant Clemmons who said:
It was unquestionably a murder. The reason being quite simply the fact that the coroner's report did not show a trace of barbiturates any place in the digestive tract.37
Sergeant Clemmons, the first police officer at the scene of the crime, blames the Kennedys for the murder of Marylin Monroe and that is certainly understandable given all the Hoover and Mafia generated anti-Kennedy propaganda. As Clemmons indicates, Marylin Monroe did not commit suicide. Her empty stomach indicated that the drugs in her bloodstream were administered, not through the empty pill box deliberately placed by her bedside to promote a fraudulent suicide verdict but through an alternative method like a hypodermic needle or a suppository. The so-called suicide scene, fraught with an empty pill bottle to suggest suicide, was obviously staged.
The question which resolves the mystery behind the death of Marylin Monroe is: Who manifested the obsession to manufacture rumour and to divert attention away from the truth about the death of Marylin Monroe. The answer leads directly to J. Edgar Hoover and the Mafia, and in the final analysis, they are clearly responsible for her murder as well as the "hell on earth" they subjected her to while she was alive. During the last weeks of her life, the only significant environment that engaged Marylin Monroe besides Dr. Greenson' S Hoover-dominated "spy ring" was the Cal-Neva Lodge. A Mafia hangout which was reportedly owned by Frank Sinatra and Sam Giancana, Marylin Monroe frequented the Lodge in the summer of 1962, a time which was ripe with Mafia generated rumour about an impending Kennedy assassination. Johnny Roselli, a frequent Cal-Neva patron who was friendly with Marylin Monroe, was particularly prone to brag and to threaten to use his "friends in high places" to take care of the Kennedys. Roselli was Mafia operative who had exploited intelligence contacts like Robert Maheau and had gained access to the CIA, the FBI and possibly even the State Department. The availability of the resources of the CIA and the FBI is certainly verified through surreptitious recordings. For example, in the following secretly recorded conversation between Johnny Roselli and Sam Ciancana, Roselli criticizes CIA bugging devices and indicates a preference for the more compact, FBI version:
Giancana: You can't take a big mike like that and put it in a flat.
Roselli: Sure, if you can take it apart.
Giancana: If you take it apart, you might not get the volume as clear as...
Roselli: Well, you play with it, you get an electronics guy... One thing, let me tell you what it is. The CIA has it...
Giancana: Like a cigarette.
Roselli: The FBI out there... has got a portable, it takes conversations way out... I told them, for Christ's sakes report on that thing.. ...... .1 got another kind you.. A guy in LA who's got an electronic cap kind of thing, and he showed me that... so I got to find out what the smallest thing is. If you put it in there, you got a receiver? And receive it when you are set up?
Giancana: Maybe a block, two blocks, three blocks...
Roselli: How big was your receiver?
Giancana: Like a... the box was only this big, maybe three inches by three inches. We were talking "blah, blah, blah." It picked it up. Think about it.
Roselli: Yeah. I'll work on it. Bobby is in Washington .38
Does the apparent final reference to "Bobby" suggest that the mobsters were shopping around for a bug to place in Kennedy's Hickory Hill estate? At any rate, when Marylin Monroe rubbed shoulders with mobsters at the Cal-Neva Lodge, she was in the throng of enemy territory and unless she was loyal to their cause or willing to keep her mouth shut, it was indeed Good-bye Norma Jean. Closely monitored by both Hoover's FBI who had deemed her to be a threat to the national security of the United States and by the Mafia which had its own predatory motives, Marylin Monroe was ultimately a victim of the Hoover embraced, Mafia code of honour -Death to the Informer. And the sinister authority that ultimately dictated events seemed all very innocuous. Dr. Greenson, for example, was not directly motivated by the Mafia, he merely acknowledged the federal authority of Hoover's FBI. In words that echo the secrecy that Hemingway's.butcher, Dr. Rome maintained, Greenson ultimately exposed the fact that he was subject to the control of an authority like Hoover's FBI when he said: "I can't explain myself or defend myself without revealing things that I don't want to reveal. It's a terrible position to be in, to say I can't talk about it. I just can't tell the whole story".39 A true Freudian indeed! In the absence of reliable evidence Qr the lack of willingness to expose the truth, it is not possible to determine exactly what Marylin overheard, how much of it she believed, whether it was just an idle threat or substantial detail, or how deeply she pried. But the substance of what she heard does not really matter -the slightest hint or rumour was a bombshell coming from the mouth of an international celebrity like Marylin Monroe, and the mobsters who frequented the Cal-Neva Lodge were too full of themselves to possibly avoid talking about the need to murder the Kennedys.
Everything about the Cal-Neva, from Skinny D'Amato, the criminal who ran the place, to Johnny Roselli, the parasite who had a predatory interest in Marylin Monroe, reeked conspiracy. On July 26, 1962, when Robert Kennedy was in Los Angeles, the Los Angeles office of the FBI received an anonymous call warning about "gangland types" who were plotting to murder Robert Kennedy.40 The last provable effort that Monroe made to contact the Justice Department was a phone call she placed on July 30, 1962. It is reasonable to assume that Monroe made a final, frantic attempt to reach someone she trusted at the Justice Department on August 4, the day she was murdered, but those records were conveniently seized by Hoover's FBI. The events of August 4, 1962 are understandably murky and according to the most plausible reconstruction, Monroe was extremely nervous, terrified and filled with extreme rage on that particular day. Indeed, Monroe was reportedly so distraught that Dr. Creenson visited her at her own house for over two hours and that particular "treatment" reportedly culminated with the necessity for heavy sedation. [In fact, it probably culminated with her murder.] Monroe's traumatic response on the 4th of August was obviously triggered by a specific, tragic foreboding -like fear and paranoia over talk about the impending Kennedy assassination. Clearly, the paranoia that occupied Marylin Monroe on the 4th of August is otherwise inexplicable because her own personal life was not in turmoil. One final note about the propaganda which blames Monroe's paranoia on her so-called romantic intentions towards the Kennedys -anyone who understands the substantive issues that in fact motivated Marylin Monroe understands the absurdity of the suggestion that Monroe was distraught over her so-called relationships with the Kennedys.
In the last interview before her death, Marylin pleaded unsuccessfully with a reporter to end his article like this:
What I really want to say: That what the world really needs is a real feeling of kinship. Everybody: stars, labourers, Negroes, Jews, Arabs. We are all brothers. Please don't make me a joke. End the interview with what I believe.41
Exasperated over what she called the "lies, lies, lies" which misrepresented her life, Marylin struggled to define her philosophy of being -to emphasize her distaste for the frivolous and her longing to embrace what she viewed to be causes that mattered. In the end, she was ignored. With a reading list as disparate as Ulysses, by James Joyce, War and Peace, by Leo Tolstoy, The Postman Always Rings Twice, by James M. Caine, Essays, by Ralph Waldo Emerson, The Prophet, by Kahlil Gibran, The Rights of Man, by Thomas Paine, Lust for Life, by Irving Stone and The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, Marylin Monroe synthesized people and ideas and expected the very best from everyone she met. But instead of becoming a conduit for hope, peace and cooperation, she ultimately became Marylin Monroe, Goddess of gossip.
In the final analysis, beyond all the smoke and mirrors, Marylin Monroe was murdered because she was determined to warn the Kennedys about assassination rumours. Obviously, if Hoover and the Mafia could have successfully used Marylin Monroe as blackmail bait while she was alive, she would not have been murdered, but like the Kennedys, she could not be compromised. It does not take Albert Einstein to determine the fact that there came a point where the need to murder Monroe surpassed the obsession to use her as blackmail bait. And so, under the circumstances as they converged to the total disarray of Marylin Monroe's terrifying final days, the only plausible motivation which made her murder urgent was the need to bury the truth about the Kennedy assassination. After her so-called "suicide", Hoover and the Mafia further exploited her death and promoted derogatory rumour which targeted the Kennedys -rumour which still generates confusion about the murder of Monroe. Ironically, Monroe died the way she lived -struggling to comprehend, to make a difference, kicking and screaming all the way against all the bigotry, all the hurt and all the rumour. In the end, she manifested the rare courage to live and to die for her beliefs -she was not a legend. She was in fact a genuine hero.
It is extremely irritating to have to constantly denounce the obvious, but when slander and gossip is repeated to the point where it is believed, there exists the need to set the record straight. In particular, Mafia party girl Judith Campbell has promoted sensational, widely acknowledged allegations which are absolutely fraudulent. According to Campbell, for eighteen months between 1960 and 1961, she regularly carried envelopes back and forth between President Kennedy and Sam Giancana, giving the Mafia direct access to the White House. According to federal wire taps however, as late as December 6, 1961, Giancana was angry over the fact that Frank Sinatra had failed to use the Kennedys to get them off his back and the allegation that Campbell was his direct link to John F. Kennedy was just a pipe dream. The following surreptitiously recorded conversation between Sam Giancana and Johnny Roselli speaks for itself:
Roselli: ... He [Frank Sinatra] was real nice to me... He says: "Johnny, I took Sam's name, and wrote it down, and told Bobby Kennedy, 'This is my buddy, this is what I want you to know Bob'. "Between you and I, Frank saw Joe Kennedy three different times-Joe Kennedy, the father. He called him three times... He [Frank] says he's got an idea that you're mad at him. I says: "That, I wouldn't know".
Giancana: He must have a guilty conscience. I never said nothing... Well, I don't know who the fuck he's [Frank's] talking to, but if I'm gonna talk to... after all, if I'm taking somebody's money, I'm gonna make sure that this money is gonna do something, like, do you want it or don't you want it. If the money is accepted, maybe one of these days the guy will do you a favour.
Roselli: That's right, He [Frank] says he wrote your name down...
Giancana: Well, one minute he [Frank] tells me this and then he tells me that and then the last time I talked to him was at the hotel in Florida a month before he left, and he said, "Don't worry about it. If I can't talk to the old man [Joseph Kennedy], I'm gonna talk to the man [President Kennedy." One minute he says he's talked to Robert, and the next minute he says he hasn't talked to him. So, he never did talk to him. It's a lot of shit. Why lie to me? I haven't got that coming.
Roselli: I can imagine... Tsk, tsk, ...... if he can't deliver, I want him to tell me: "John, the load's too heavy.
Giancana: That's all right. At least then you know how to work. You won't let your guard down then, know what I mean... Ask him [Frank] if I'm going to be invited to his New Year's party.42
In light of the fact that Sam Giancana was extremely frustrated by his lack of access to the Kennedy White House, Campbell's claim that she was a conduit between Giancana and Kennedy is absolutely absurd. Jn fact, Sam Giancana was so desperate about exacting favour from the White House that he was obsessed by the determination to plot schemes to get the Kennedys off his back. On the one hand, Giancana could rely on Hoover's FBI because his agents were too preoccupied by the Hoover-directed anti-Communist witch hunts to bother with the Mafia and on the other hand he had to contend with the federal agents that the Kennedy Justice Department directed. The split made Giancana somewhat "schizo" and when FBI agents tailed him, he would blurt out commentary like: "Hey, we' re supposed to be on the same side aren't we?" and "Why don't you fucks go out and investigate Communists?" In the end, he was so frustrated that he pulled the old Lansky trick of staring an FBI microphone in the face and recording derogatory information about the Kennedys. One way or the other, Giancana and Roselli were going to get the Kennedys off their backs and the following FBI memorandum which summarizes one of their failed attempts to blackmail the Kennedys, reflects their absolute determination:
During our investigation of Roselli we picked up information connecting John Roselli with Judith Campbell who we have determined has been in telephonic contact with Sam Giancana, Chicago gangster and with other underworld figures. In addition, she is the individual who has been in telephonic contact with Evelyn Lincoln, the President's secretary at the White House. The nature of the relationship between Campbell and Mrs Lincoln is not known. However, one [name deleted], a private investigator df questionable reputation in Los Angeles, has alleged that Judith Campbell at one time had an affair with President Kennedy. The information concerning Campbell's contacts with the President's secretary has been furnished previously to the White House and the Attorney General.43
On the surface, this "evidence" appears to be very convincing. In context however, it has never been verified by anyone who hasn't clearly demonstrated the capacity to be an accomplished liar. According to Campbell, Dave Powers and Evelyn Lincoln facilitated her relationship with Kennedy, but according to Lincoln, Campbell was just a campaign worker and Powers indicates that the only Campbell he knows is "chunky soup". These denials by so-called "Kennedy people" are routinely dismissed because they are allegedly biased, but that certainly does not affect the fact that Campbell's allegations are obviously fraudulent.
Indeed, an objective accounting verifies the fact that Judith Campbell was simply a Kennedy campaign worker that Frank Sinatra introduced to Kennedy on a campaign stopover in Las Vegas. If she was not Mafia-appointed, her loyalty to the mob is certainly extraordinary. Frank Sinatra actively campaigned to bring Kennedy to the White House and he was so enthusiastic about the prospect of a Kennedy presidency that he convinced Mafia Boss Sam Giancana to support the Kennedy ticket as well. In the end, while Kennedy did not ask for his support, the considerable political clout of the Chicago Mafia helped put Kennedy in the White House. In return, Mafia boss Sam Giancana and Mafia mistress Judith Campbell expected to exact favour from the White House. And so, the context of the frivolous, absurd allegations that Judith Campbell was simultaneously sleeping with John F. Kennedy, Johnny Roselli and Sam Giancana is the excessive, frustrated zeal to develop derogatory information to blackmail the Kennedys. If provable liars and perjurers like Judith Campbell, who were willing to do absolutely anything to compensate for the fact that the Kennedys refused to "go to bed" with the Mafia, can fabricate outrageous lies and make the public believe them -we are an extremely gullible society. In 1975, Campbell testified before the Senate Select Intelligence Committee where she made it clear that she was never an intermediary between the Mafia and the White House. Prior to her death, seeking to develop more dirt to satisfy her everlasting wrath, she changed her mind and claimed that she was in fact an intermediary between Kennedy and the Mafia. And the press sold the story to a public that is evidently willing to accept anything, when the truth is denied.
In the final analysis, if Campbell and Kennedy were in fact actually having an affair Hoover would have produced real evidence, not "telephonic contacts" which ultimately prove nothing at all. Clearly, Hoover was perfectly capable of documenting affairs without having to resort to the charade of recording his friends in the process of spreading rumor. Indeed, as early as 1942, Hoover had gathered entire transcripts of evidence to in fact prove that John F. Kennedy and Inga Arvad were lovers. The following transcript developed through the FBI's wire tapping and bugging of Inga Arvad's apartment, reflects the nature of genuine proof:
Kennedy: It's probably me but I don't know. Evidently you got something. Your not holding out on me, are you?
Arvad: You know that I'm not, don't you?
Kennedy: I'm quite sure of it. I don't know. It might have been something you said...
Arvad: But what could the conversation be about except you and me? There's nothing illegal that they can put their hands on. What's illegal about being in love?
Kennedy: But maybe there is some background on you? You can see that?
Arvad: Yes I can. Then it would be much better for me to get a divorce because the only thing they have on me is that my husband works for Wenner-Gren.
Kennedy: I think that would be about the best subject-they can always say, well that da da da. I wouldn't get it for that reason.... It's up to you whether you get. I don't want to influence on you in any way in getting it.>
Arvad: That's childish. I'm still going to get it [a divorce] and we decided not to see each other anymore, didn't we. So what do you have to do with it.... I'll do it because I want to do it. Have you any doubts?
Kennedy: My point is that you hadn't hesitated on account of me.
Arvad: That's not the point, what are you afraid of?...
Kennedy: You just go ahead and keep me posted. You'll probably be seeing me as soon as you get back.
Arvad: I think so. I hope so.... I don't think things are at all like you think. I am going to see [FBI Director] Hoover. I made an appointment for Monday.
Kennedy: What did they say to you?
Arvad: I talked to Miss Gandi [sic, Helen Gandy], his private Secretary, and she said "howdy do Miss Arvad, it is very nice to talk to you again. How are you?
Kennedy: Did she ask what you wished to see Mr. Hoover about?
Arvad: No. I said I would like to see Mr. Hoover for a few minutes and she was delighted.
Kennedy: What are you going to say to him?
Arvad: I'm going to say "Now look here Edgar J., I don't like everybody listening in on my phone." You know that somebody is always listening in on this phone.
Kennedy: How do you know?
Arvad: Why on earth does it always cut. Don't you notice when we talk there is some cut in it. We were cut off for a fraction of a second... and the same thing happened when I just talked to New York.
Kennedy: They must have little to do if they are listening to us. They must have had a pretty dull week.
That is what you call genuine evidence about an affair. Indeed, Hoover did not rely upon vague, "telephonic contact" evidence to prove a genuine allegation. Clearly, the "telephonic contact" that Campbell had established was merely a rash of deliberately placed calls which sought to embarrass Kennedy through fraudulent implications. Some of the calls that Campbell placed to Evelyn Lincoln at the White House were actually made from the residence of Sam Giancana, and if Hoover was ever genuinely interested in proving the nature of the relationship between Lincoln and Campbell, he could have easily produced an entire transcript of the call to make his point. Wire-tap conversations of Hoover's Mafia friends in the process of spreading false rumors is clearly not a substitute for real evidence to prove that Kennedy was having an affair -staged conversations merely reflect the split personality of a Justice Department which was both a politically motivated spy ring and an anti-Mafia, law enforcement agency at the same time. In the end, allegations like the bizarre assertion that Campbell was sleeping with Kennedy, Giancana and Roselli, were just a sideshow. Indeed, the frivolous effort to blackmail the Kennedys backfired and the Justice department responded with twenty-four hour, lockstep surveillance which placed as many as five agents at a time, tailing both Giancana and Campbell, and she described the experience in her memoirs, in the following terms: "I was followed, hounded, harassed, accosted, spied upon, intimidated, burglarized, embarrassed, humiliated, denigrated, and... finally driven to the brink of death".44 Seething with anger, Campbell never did get over her hatred for the Kennedys. In a televised interview aired just prior to her death, she simply could not contain her contempt for John F. Kennedy, and in her typical grasp to build something out of nothing, she said:
You can see it in a lot of the films. There's this slight little smile on his face. And it's as if he's pulling one over on people. And very often he was.
True to her wrath, she never backed away from the obsessive determination to assassinate President Kennedy's character. The Kennedys had made a "sucker" out of her lover, the Mafia murderer who prided himself for "having stolen the election" and who was perpetually frustrated over his failure to reap the benefits he expected, and Campbell was going to do everything she possibly could, to discredit his enemies.In the end, people of the Giancana/Campbell ilk belong to a sorry category of predators who fraudulently ascribe malignant characters and purposes to their adversaries. One of the people who is evidently responsible for "legitimizing" Campbell's claims is Robert Blakey, the law professor who was a prosecutor with the Department of Justice in 1963. Blakey curiously promotes Campbell's allegations as fact and is evidently willing to take whatever she has to say at face value. Co-author of the book The Plot to Kill the President, Blakey writes:
From the mob's point of view, Kennedy had been compromised. He had crossed the line. In the Greek sense, the liaison with Judith Campbell was, we came to believe, Kennedy's fatal flaw, the error in judgment for which the gods demand their due.45
And after describing the mob's point of view, Blakey evidently adopts and promotes it as his own. According to Blakey:
As in Greek tragedy, there was in the President's character a fatal flaw, a hamartia, one that could have made him vulnerable to assassination by organized crime.46
In the absence of proof, Blakey's often repeated fatal flaw alliteration is a frivolous rumor and in the face of manipulation, it is a disturbing and outrageous fraud. Blakey's portrayal of the evidence clearly reflects the tendency to mislead rather than to record the facts. In his own words:
Not known for being a lavish gift-giver, Kennedy made at least one contribution to Campbell's livelihood in the form of a check for $2,000.47
The claim that Campbell received a $2,000 check from Kennedy is often repeated by other writers who are misled by Blakey, but the simple fact of the matter is, it isn't even true. Kitty Kelly reflects the origin of the so-called $2,000 cheque through the following sensational lies that Blakey has evidently exploited, in effort to legitimize them:
Kennedy met with Giancana [the murderer] at the Eontainbleau on April 12. "I was not present," says Exner [Judith Campbell], "but Jack came to my suite afterward, and I asked him how the meeting had gone. He seemed very happy about it and thanked me for making the arrangements. He then stayed with me for an hour or so, and we talked about the campaign. Jack told me that if he didn't get the nomination in July, he and his wife would get a divorce. He didn't say he was leaving her for me or for any other woman, or that Jackie was leaving him for any other man. He simply said their marriage was unhappy and the divorce was a mutual decision between them."
Whether people actually believe that sort of garbage or not, the attempt to legitimize it by claiming that Kennedy actually gave her a $2,000 signed cheque, is bizarre to say the least. Blakey in fact sounds like a disappointed prosecutor who seeks to make up for the fact that Campbell has absolutely nothing, not a single shred of evidence which conclusively links her to Kennedy, despite an alleged two-and-a-half year relationship. In the final analysis, by accepting such a fraudulent account of events, Blakey is implicitly protecting the reputation of J. Edgar Hoover and the Mafia. Clearly, Robert Blakey, who was Chief Counsel of the House Select Committee on Assassinations when it determined that Hoover's FBI was "morally reprehensible, illegal, felonious, and unconstitutional," should know better than to give credence to Mafia-generated rumor. [In retrospect, the "relationship" between Blakey and Campbell reminds one of that between Ken Starr and Linda Tripp. Is it reasonable to accept what they have to say without scrutiny?]
Were it not for the untimely death of his adversaries, Hoover's political career may have very well ended in 1933, when Senator Thomas Walsh was evidently preparing for the ouster of the corrupt demagogue. Walsh condemned the abuse of power and the illegal actions that Hoover condoned through his failure to respect due process, and Hoover's only retort was to wage secret battle to compensate for the fact that the rule of law was against him. The war between Hoover and Walsh became critical in 1933 when Roosevelt announced his decision to make Walsh his Attorney General. On February 28, Attorney General-designate Thomas Walsh announced his decision to reorganize the Justice Department and that his plans included "an almost completely new Personnel".49On March 3, 1933, a day before Roosevelt's Inauguration, Thomas Walsh, who had recently married and was on a brief wedding trip to North Carolina, died of a massive myocardial infarction. And in his typical cover-your-tracks fashion, J. Edgar Hoover made sure that "a thoroughly documented medical examination was made."50In retrospect, it is probably safe to assume that Senator Thomas Walsh was Hoover's first known victim.
The fact that Hoover hired murderers to "terminate the employment" of his adversaries was graphically illustrated in The Squad. In the words of the hired hitman who used the name Michael Milan because there is no statute of limitations for murder:
Mr. Hoover had decided that the courts of the United States did not properly administer justice the way he thought they should... Maybe the cases were too sensitive or Mr. Hoover felt that the courts would never dispense the justice he wanted. Many times, these were cases that involved national security or that couldn't be prosecuted because there was no evidence. In these cases the guilty people walked away. Mr. Hoover had a way to deal with that. He devised what could only be described as an execution squad made up of no more than ten men at any one time, none of whom went to any FBI academy or took a civil-service exam. None of the men were supposed to be seen by regular FBI agents. He called us the Unknowns. We always worked in the background, finding the people the Bureau couldn't and turning them into hundreds of John Does on hundreds of Medical Examiners' reports for over forty years. Some people we turned into informants -although I hate that word -who were used to pursue cases through regular channels. Sometimes we were there and gone before the regular Bureau agents ever got to the scene. We would do our work and plant the necessary evidence for the FBI to follow. How we got the evidence wasn't important, just so that it held up in court. If it didn't, we'd have to go back to work. Sometimes the regular agents never even got to the scene because there was nothing left for them to do. No blood, no bodies, no questions. People just disappeared. Loans were foreclosed. The packages -as ordered -were delivered.51