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Linda Powell

Did Bobby Kennedy kill Marilyn

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John, as per your advice, herewith my topic starter repeated from the History board.

* * *

This has been somewhat of a hot topic since the mid-sixties and it shows no signs of cooling. Opinion in general these days leans toward the theory that RFK engineered her death and was present at the time of it.

There are some however, who feel that Marilyn's death was an attempt to frame RFK and various names have been put forward over the years as culprits for this. The mob in particular have been named as likely suspects because of RFK's crackdown on their activities and because of Joe and Jack Kennedy's reneging on alleged electoral promises to Giancana.

A number of researchers, most notably perhaps Donald H Wolfe and Robert Slatzer, have concluded that RFK was involved, though there are inconsistencies in their published research which have led some to conclude that they have been selective in presenting their findings or have been subjective in interpretation.

I'd be interested in opinions on this topic.

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I find it impossible to believe Robert Kennedy was involved in the murder of Marilyn Monroe. What motive would he have had? I know there is this story put about that Marilyn was keeping a diary about her relationship with the two brothers. This story started as a result of a forged CIA document dated 3rd August, 1962.

Wiretap of telephone conversation between reporter Dorothy Kilgallen and her close friend, Howard Rothberg; from wiretap of telephone conversation of Marilyn Monroe and Attorney General Robert Kennedy. Appraisal of Content: (Blacked Out).

1. Rothberg discussed the apparent comeback of subject with Kilgallen and the break up with the Kennedys. Rothberg told Kilgallen that she was attending Hollywood parties hosted by the "inner circle" among Hollywood's elite and was becoming the talk of the town again. Rothberg indicated in so many words, that she had secrets to tell, no doubt arising from her trists (sic) with the President and the Attorney General. One such (illegible) mentions the visit by the President at a secret air base for the purpose of inspecting things from outer space. Kilgallen replied that she knew what might be the source of the visit. In the mid-fifties Kilgallen learned of secret effort by US and UK governments to identify the origins of crashed spacecraft and dead bodies, from a British government official. Kilgallen believed the story may have come from the (illegible) in the late forties. Kilgallen said that if the story is true, it could cause terrible embarrassment to Jack and his plans to have NASA put men on the moon.

2. Subject repeatedly called the Attorney General and complained about the way she was being ignored by the President and his brother.

3. Subject threatened to hold a press conference and would tell all.

4. Subject made references to "bases" in Cuba and knew of the President's plan to kill Castro.

5. Subject made reference to her "diary of secrets" and what the newspapers would do with such disclosures.

Some researchers believed this document and argued that it helped explain both the deaths of Marilyn Monroe and Dorothy Kilgallen (both died in very similar ways).

It is true that both John and Robert Kennedy had brief affairs with Monroe. In fact, it was probably Robert’s only affair and created a lot of problems within his marriage. However, Robert knew that he could not keep the affair a secret. In an interview he gave to Anthony Lewis (published for the first time 1988) he reported that during his brother’s presidency J. Edgar Hoover sent someone around to his office every month given details of information he had on the Kennedy family. This included details of both men’s affairs with Marilyn Monroe. It was indeed the information that Hoover had about JFK relationship with Judith Campbell that eventually convinced him not to retire Hoover as head of the FBI.

Robert Kennedy therefore had no motivation to get personally involved in any plot to kill Monroe. If he had of done, Hoover, who hated RFK with a passion, would have made sure it would have been made public.

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John - as you're probably aware there are numerous books examining the Monroe death, but if you haven't already read them, I'd recommend you get Robert Slatzer's 'The Life and Curious Death of Marilyn Monroe'. This was published in the 70's and copies are hard to find (try Amazon). Cut through the sentimental dross therein and go to page 313 and read the interview with 'Jack Quinn'.

Also get Donald H Wolfe's 'The Assassination of Marilyn Monroe', published 1998 which I believe is still in print. Wolfe isn't a particularly good writer and his style jumps about - one minute he's doing the usual bio of Marilyn (films, husbands etc) and the next he's back at the scene of her death, but if you extract the relevant stuff it amounts to no more than a few pages. See the interview Wolfe did with Norman Jeffries, the son-in-law of Eunice Murray, Marilyn's housekeeper.

I'm familiar with the document you refer to but the cause of MM's death, along with the chain of circumstances which led to it, cannot be evaluated on the basis of a hoax report.

There is a great deal of published material to read on the subject and as part of my own research it's been necessary to make detailed studies and comparisons of such works, including works on the Kennedy family, Sinatra, Lawford, Giancana and Hoover. Some are simply regurgitations of the findings of other researchers, many provide contradictory information, but there is wheat amongst the chaff and the MM/RFK scenario should neither be accepted nor rejected without a thorough evaluation of available resources and a rounded picture of the characters and their interactions. I have also used FBI documents in my research, but these equally must be approached with caution as they sometimes contain errors and contradictions. Therefore, your question about RFK's motive would require a much longer answer than seems fair to post on this forum. I will say though, that Hoover's dislike of RFK, in my opinion, would be tempered by his desire for control. He never needed to expose anyone. The real value of what he knew about others – or what they thought he might know - lay in the power it gave him to blackmail and manipulate.

As to whether or not there was a diary – the main sources for this are Robert Slatzer and Jeanne Carmen (MM's pal) and I'm aware that the credibility of both these individuals has been questioned. My own feelings are that if there was a diary it alone was insufficient to motivate a murder and I have concluded that there were other factors involved. Just as some might suggest that the Bay of Pigs was the writing on the wall for JFK, my opinion is that the sequence of events which led to MM's death began in February 1962 in Mexico.

Like the JFK assassination, the MM/RFK angle tends to polarize opinions and for some the notion of RFK being party to murder is unacceptable.

Incidentally, a couple of years ago I outlined a dramatized version of the MM/RFK scenario to the BBC but they rejected it because they felt it was 'too controversial' and were concerned that legal action might be taken against them by the Kennedy family.

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I disagree respectfully with John here. My belief is that MM was killed by Giancana's men on request of both Kennedy's as she was pregnant with JFK and refused the abortion, unlike Judyth Exner a while before.

I'm sorry if this is a blow to the Kennedy admirers. It was to me.

Wim

Edited by Wim Dankbaar

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From what I was told by a person who grandfather was in the New York Mafia is that Monroe had a habit of going back and forth from Mafia to FBI all the time taking information on a bouncing level.

She was killed and it wasn't an accidental over dose because of her learning to much information. I am not sure what side did the murder of Monroe Mafia or Government? I somehow feel it leans more to government than Mafia but could be wrong.

To tame for it to be Mafia. To planned for her to be with Bobbie Kennedy just prior. So, seems to me more governmental deed.

Edited by Nancy Eldreth

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I disagree respectfully with John here. My belief is that MM was killed by Giancana's men on request of both Kennedy's as she was pregnant with JFK and refused the abortion, unlike Judyth Exner a while before.

I'm sorry if this is a blow to the Kennedy admirers. It was to me.

Wim

Er.. Reportedly, Marilyn had at least two previous abortions of cells with Kennedy DNA, why would she suddenly refuse one abortion? What was so special about that ONE time? Also, Marilyn had endometriosis - meaning it was extremely difficult to get pregnant, or to carry a child to term ( note her large number of miscarriages ). Also, Momo wasn't very fond of the Kennedys in 1962 - yet he does this gigantic favor for them and doesn't turn it against them?

So basically, no truth to that, at all. As usual when it comes to the Files-Brigade. I'm beginning to think actual truth is a fear of yours. ;)

Anyway.. I don't think RFK had it in him to organize a murder, let alone of someone that wouldn't even matter in the grand scope of things. Marilyn, I believe, wouldn't have gone public with it - and even if she did, what harm could it really do? Ted killed a woman and he's still being re-elected to his Senate seat, do you think people would care about one little affair?

Besides, if I was married to someone that looked like Ethel, I'd want Marilyn Monroe too. Even though she wasn't very "clean" when it came to personal hygiene.

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John - as you're probably aware there are numerous books examining the Monroe death, but if you haven't already read them, I'd recommend you get Robert Slatzer's 'The Life and Curious Death of Marilyn Monroe'. This was published in the 70's and copies are hard to find (try Amazon). Cut through the sentimental dross therein and go to page 313 and read the interview with 'Jack Quinn'.

Also get Donald H Wolfe's 'The Assassination of Marilyn Monroe', published 1998 which I believe is still in print. Wolfe isn't a particularly good writer and his style jumps about - one minute he's doing the usual bio of Marilyn (films, husbands etc) and the next he's back at the scene of her death, but if you extract the relevant stuff it amounts to no more than a few pages. See the interview Wolfe did with Norman Jeffries, the son-in-law of Eunice Murray, Marilyn's housekeeper.

Wolfe quotes Jeffries as saying in 1992, "I guess they can't very well electrocute me in a wheelchair."

Give me a break. We are to believe that Jeffries kept his "eyewitness account" of Bobby killing Marilyn a secret for thirty years under threat of death. Then he told it to Wolfe, who visited him in Arkansas without a video camera? All we have is Wolfe's word.

I'm familiar with the document you refer to but the cause of MM's death, along with the chain of circumstances which led to it, cannot be evaluated on the basis of a hoax report.

That "CIA document" about Marilyn discussing UFO's with Dorothy Kilgallen is a hoax. Howard Rothberg, the source named within it, lives today in the Miami area. He says it's fraud. All he did was tell Kilgallen on the phone that Marilyn was sleeping with Bobby. Nothing to do with UFO's.

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Nic wrote:

Besides, if I was married to someone that looked like Ethel, I'd want Marilyn Monroe too. Even though she wasn't very "clean" when it came to personal hygiene.

Interesting that a supposed feminist defender of abortion would chose to make such a cruel remark about Mrs. Kennedy's personal appearence.

Given their progency, Bobby must have found his wife of some interest, Nic.

Nic also wrote:

Anyway.. I don't think RFK had it in him to organize a murder, let alone of someone that wouldn't even matter in the grand scope of things.

Not sure what she means by "had it in him to organize a murder"? Was he intelligent enough to organize a murder? I think his intelligence is apparent.

If she means his moral and/or religious principles would prevent him from condoining a murder, I would like to think that is true, and from what I understand RFK's Catholocism was real to him. However, one should remember the truism that "desperate men do desperate things". An affair prevented Hart from obtaining the Democratic nomination even years later in much more "liberal" times. Proof of a Kennedy affair with Monroe would have destroyed the Kennedys politically, of that there can be little doubt.

Edited by Tim Gratz

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I doubt that Robert Kennedy would have knowingly been involved in killing Marilyn Monroe. I do think that he was in the area that night and not in San Francisco, as he and the family claimed (or at a ranch in that area either).

I had the opportunity to see Bobby in his last motorcade in San Francisco, on Montgomery Street, just before the California primary; I was shoved into his car by the crowd and looked him right in the eye. I saw a decent person, a well-intended person. He also looked somewhat frightened. I didn't find out until why years later -- going down Grant Avenue in Chinatown (prior to entering the financial district) someone had tossed a Chinese firecracker into the back of his car.

Perhaps the more important question to ask is, what, if any, connection was there to the murder of MM and Bobby, as well as JFK. Was MM's murder connected to theirs in some way, and if so, why? Why was she the first one to die? To whom, or to what, was she a threat (other than the Kennedys', potentially)?

As far as MM's attractiveness to both JFK and Bobby, no matter how beautiful the Kennedy wives were, or how bright or funny, MM was simply an unusual person, with an amazing aura. I just think she was probably irresistable, especially when she turned on her charm. It didn't help to be a superstar in her own right, either.

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Pamela, I would agree with you that it would take a man with extremely high moral or religious scruples to resist the beauty and charms of Marilyn Monroe. The strongest man would put himself in a position never to be tempted by the charms of such an alluring woman, lnowing that, for instance, being alone with such a woman would make her charms almost irresistible.

Very interesting that you had the opportunity to be so close to RFK. I agree with you that he was both decent and well-intentioned (even if he had been involved with Monroe.) I would reiterate my point, however, that despite his decency, even decent men can be driven to unthinkable acts if in a desperate situation. And to think the unthinkable, if RFK was involved, it may have been as much to save his brother as to save himself. The other item to be added to the equation is that RFK could have been moved by the concern that if JFK fell, the country would be left in the hands of LBJ or Barry Goldwater (unsure which he would have considered the most undesireable outcome).

I do not think there is sufficient evidence to link RFK to the death of MM. The unfortunate thing is that the fact that apparently both he and his brother were involved with MM will leave that possibility open (showing that immortal acts can have terrible unforeseen consequences). That and the troubling fact that reliable evidence puts him in the LA area the night of her death, despitefamily denials to the contrary.

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I would reiterate my point, however, that despite his decency, even decent men can be driven to unthinkable acts if in a desperate situation.

Is this a confession?

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Confession to WHAT?

I do not recall the history but I think there is a history behind the phrase "desperate men do desparate things". I'll try to verify it.

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