Friday, May 31, 2013

John Kennedy and Hitler's Germany - Uncovering what the Biographer's Chose to HIde

Did you READ anything interesting in May?  I spent a few profitable hours reading about something we are not supposed to know about John Fitzgerald Kennedy.  The missing chapter, no less.  It seems that a curious German fellow has uncovered material that the Legion of Kennedy Biographers chose to hide.   Not downplay.  Hide.  

I owe it all to Matt Drudge who pointed to an article in the DAILY MAIL.  It was a typical screamer of a British headline "How  JFK  secretly ADMIRED Hitler", but I could get past that.  So can you.

How JFK Secretly admired Hitler. DAILY MAIL article  May  23, 2013

I don't know how long the DAILY MAIL will keep the JFK - NAZI GERMANY story archived online, but for now it can be read HERE     I hasten to add that Kennedy didn't meet Hitler, although his father Joseph Kennedy was definitely angling for a Peace Treaty between the U.S.A.  and the Third Reich.  That private undertaking got Ambassador Kennedy fired by the Roosevelt Administration.
Young "Jack" Kennedy was not some embittered labourer from the streets of Boston. He was a university graduate and the son of the United States Ambassador to England.  His diaries were intended to be shared with his parents, who were paying for his trip through Nazi Germany.  His diaries should, and are, preserved for the historical record.  The problem was that the Kennedy family  experimented with several marketing campaigns -   was Jack  an "American War Hero".... a "Young Lincoln"...  a "Young Napoleon"  or ?   Ultimately they settled for "Camelot"... the movie version.  After Kennedy was shot, the biographers went to work, and well... some things got left out.
John F. Kennedy Unter Deutschen,  German biography 2013
available in German and French but not English

"The towns are all charming, which shows that the Nordic races appear to be definitely superior to their Latin counterparts. The Germans are really too good – that's why people conspire against them – they do it to protect themselves."
 "I have come to the conclusion that fascism is right for Germany and Italy. What are the evils of fascism compared to communism?" 
Truth be told, millions of Americans agreed with every word,  but only John F. Kennedy was being groomed for the Presidency of the United States.  What he learned in Germany he would later adapt for use on the American masses.  Had Hitler won the war, John  Kennedy would no doubt have been marketed as the man who "understood the Germans" and could lead America in bartering a mutually beneficial relationship between the two super-powers.  But Hitler destroyed everything he created, and History turned.
JFK  and his father Joe Kennedy, leaving London, March 1939

What the Kennedy's most admired about Hitlerian Germany were the techniques by which the "Outsider" drove to Reichstag, overwhelmed the German political establishment, and seized their flag.  The Catholic Kennedy clan,  political outsiders,  were equally determined to storm Washington, and seize the flag.   Books, radio,  movies,  mass rallies,  PR firms, sex appeal.   The Germans loved, and so did the Americans.  They still do.

WHY ENGLAND SLEPT (1940)  JFKs  first book
WHY ENGLAND SLEPT, (1940) was a recycled university thesis.
Not exactly "Mein Kampf", but books give weight to any political resume.

ROYAL JELLY -  Despite a back injury incurred at Harvard University,  young Kennedy persuaded the U.S. Navy to give him a chance.  He trained as a PT Boat skipper and was shipped off to a vital war zone - the Solomon Islands, where he acquitted himself well.   A Japanese destroyer rammed PT 109 and sank her.  The skipper swam miles to get help for his stranded crew. It was the only unscripted episode in JFKs life, and it was wonderful.  And so a few pages were shredded and rewritten.

HERO  STORY - Kennedy from flown back from the South Pacific and given a hospital room in Boston.  The Kennedy PR machine got in touch with legendary journalist John Hersey, who was writing for TIME and LIFE magazines.  Hersey interviewed Kennedy and the story "Survival" was published in the NEW YORKER in early 1944.  You may think you don't know Hersey's work, but you do. We all read  his book HIROSHIMA  in high school.   Hersey's  Wiki-page doesn't even mention his documenting a pivotal moment in JFKs career, but Hersey had planted a potent seed which would bear crowd pleasing fruit.

PT 109,  author Robert Donovan was a Washington Bureau Chief
JFK assisted experienced biographer Robert J. Donovan with the
preparation of his book  "PT  109", published 1961. That fact is
acknowledged on the book's jacket and in the text. The photo 
reminds me of Hitler and Speer pouring over plans together.

PT 109 in the Kennedy  Presidential  inauguration parade 1961 - JFK on reviewing stand

TRACTION -  It's January 20, 1961 and President Kennedy is reviewing the troops in his Inaugural parade.  The PT 109 story is gaining traction and word has  come down that Hollywood is making a movie.  (note the chains on the trailer tires. Washington streets were slick with ice)  Hitler wood have approved of such grand military-political pageantry.  If JFK commented on the similarities in taste, it was not recorded.  It should have been.


THe JFK  memorial plaque in Munich, Germany
The JFK  memorial plaque in Munich, Germany.
2013 is the 50th anniversary of the Berlin Speech.

The new  book,  JOHN F. KENNEDY - AMONG THE GERMANS, is being published to take advantage of the 50th Anniversary of Kennedy's  extremely famous "Berlin Speech"(1963)  which we have all seen played to us a thousand times.  It even has it's own wiki page and video clip.  We've heard it just as often as his equally famous  "Send Men to the Moon Speech".  In fact, as a Canadian youngster I was totally besotted by American accomplishments, typified by the Apollo Space Program  that it actually saddened me my own country was not interested in manned space flight or "taking the fight" to the Communists.  I loved Kennedy for the support he gave to the Apollo program. But then again I also loved the PT 109 story,  his creation of the Army Special Forces (Green Berets) and his kicking of Russian ass during the Cuban Missile Crisis.  Alas, I grew up and that cheaply earned love  simply faded.  Now I just find Kennedy an interesting historical figure, like Hitler,  and certainly a great example of the political manipulation of the masses.  That's enough.

Update Nov. 1, 2015
I just restored the image properties for this article and several others. It really is a pain in the ass that Google keeps deleting them, as many people use the picture search function on Google to find content.  Deleted image info means the Blog articles are invisible to many searching.  As well, I just ran the book title -  JOHN F. KENNEDY AMONG THE GERMANS.  Two years after the fact, there is still no English edition. My gawd, the left-liberal publishing industry in the USA protects its Democrat Party Presidents!   

John F. Kennedy Among the Germans - Google search