Conspiracy and Cover-Up:
The RFK Assassination
It's been almost 24 years since
Robert Kennedy was shot down in the prime of his life. Having just won the
crucial California primary, Robert Kennedy was making his way out of the Ambassador
Ballroom, after delivering a speech, when shots were fired. Robert Kennedy
died of a fatal head wound. Arrested, charged, and later convicted of the crime
was 24 year old Sirhan Sirharn.
Since the beginning, there's been talk of a possible second gunman in the room with Sirhan Sirharn that tragic night. And here's why: most eyewitnesses, place Sirhan anywhere between 3'-6' (feet) in front of RFK. Yet, the bullet that killed Robert Kennedy was fired from a distance of 1-11/2" (inches) away from his head, behind his right ear. How could that be? Eyewitnesses say Sirhan never got that close.
Having investigated the RFK assassination, Professor Philip H. Melanson has written a book on his findings titled The Robert F. Kennedy Assassination: New Revelations on the Conspiracy and Cover-up (Shapolsky Publishers Inc.). Professor Melanson takes us through the discrepancies surrounding the official version of events and evidence in Robert Kennedy's death. Mr. Melanson is also the Director of the Robert F. Kennedy Assassination Archives at Southeastern Massachusetts University, North Dartmouth, Massachusetts.
We talked with Professor Melanson about the new Revelations in the Robert Kennedy Assassination.
Q-As the Director of the RFK Assossiation Archives, what do you do? What is your job?
A-Well. I'm Professor of Political Science, so all of my professional time is spent in teaching political science. In terms of my role as the Director of the archives, it involves getting the material, which now is far less of a role because we have gotten most of the material which is available to obtain. From 1984 thru 1989, my major activity was in working with other people to get the files out and to get them to our university, and also private collections. I supervise student interns and student workers who work with the collection and work with the archivists in cataloging it and going over it. We answer a lot of requests from researchers and journalists and news organizations who were after something particular, need something looked up or verified. I've done a lot of interviewing. The interviews that I conducted for my book were really sort of begun as oral history interviews for the archives. The book sort of evolved from that.
Q-If there was a conspiracy and a cover-up in Robert Kennedy's murder, why haven't we seen Ethel Kennedy and Senator Ted Kennedy holding a press conference and demanding the case be re-opened? With their clout, surely they would be taken seriously. Why is it that Philip Melanson is leading the march?
A-Well, I don't know. That's a question of the motivation or mind set or viewpoint of the Kennedy’s. That's not really something I can speak to directly, because I haven't spoken with them directly. But, it seems to me there are two dimensions to a major political assassination and one is that there's always a personal or often a family dimension. And then, there's a national dimension to this political system kind of dimension. I think that even people, who do not care for Robert Kennedy or his political legacy personally, understand that the murder of my political figure is something that needs to be sorted out in terms of law enforcement, and threats to democracy. That explains why people beyond the Kennedy family should be concerned and what their concerns are. It's something for them to articulate, I guess.