that the kids were all told the truth as they grew up but it
was Teddy who insisted that the family put the thing to
Evidently, Teddy wanted to preserve his career in the political
arena and knew that any airing of the case would jeopardize it.
Which was probably true. Under those circumstances, the Kennedys
can't even protect themselves.
This is understandable in human terms. But the compromise allows
the likes of Reeves, de Toledano, and Hersh to take the field
with confidence. The Kennedys are silent; they won't sue; it must
be true. As a corollary, this shows that the old adage about
history being written by the victors stands. In this upside down
milieu, all the Kennedys' sworn enemies can talk to any cheapjack
writer with a hefty advance and recycle another thrashing.
Mobsters and those in their employ, CIA officers and their
assets, rabid right-wingers et. al. Escorted by these writers,
they now do their dances over the graves of the two men they
hated most in life and can now revile in death. There is
something Orwellian about this of course.
The converse of this thesis is also true. The voices the Kennedys
symbolized are now squelched. Collier and Horowitz are intent on
never letting the ghost of the sixties reappear. The poor, the
weak, minorities, and the left's intelligentsia must not be
unsheathed again. (As Todd Gitlin notes in his book The Sixties,
on occasion, the Kennedy administration actually had SDS members
in the White House to discuss foreign policy issues.) The image
of JFK on national television giving hell to the steel companies;
of Kennedy staking out his policy for detente at American
University; of RFK grilling Sam Giancana and Jimmy Hoffa; of
Bobby going through the personnel list at the State Department to