ClandesTime 057 – Conspiracy Theories: The Death of Marilyn Monroe

Published September 16th 2015 | Tags: , , , , , ,

Marilyn Monroe’s death in 1962 was ruled a ‘probable suicide’ but there have always been suspicions that she was murdered because of her relationship with the Kennedy brothers.  In this episode I look at the various conspiracy theories about her death, from the highly plausible (she was murdered by her psychiatrist Ralph Greenson) to the ridiculous (the Mafia killed her on behalf of the CIA).  From rumours in her FBI file, to the much-disputed CIA memo dated the day before she died, to the sexual fantasies of psychopathic mobsters, this is an epic exploration into one of Hollywood’s darkest mysteries.

Sources:

The Opperman Report – The Murder of Marilyn Monroe: Case Closed

Marilyn Monroe CIA Memo

FBI Report on Marilyn Monroe Conspiracy Theory

Transcript

I am a relative newcomer to this case, the death of Marilyn Monroe and I am by no means an expert. I was vaguely familiar with her affairs with the Kennedy brothers and that there were these rumours she had been killed in some way as a result of that. But I never gave it much thought, certainly not as much thought as I gave the assassination of JFK which I was quite obsessed with for a year or more. That was some time ago – these days I couldn’t give a toss about JFK, to me he was just another establishment prick who pissed off the wrong people so they shot him. Like Princess Diana, who really cares if the intelligence services kill aristocrats on behalf of other aristocrats?

The Assassination of Marilyn Monroe

Then, last year I came across the book The Assassination of Marilyn Monroe written by Donald Wolfe, a Hollywood movie director and producer who wrote investigated and wrote this book on the case. It is a big thick brick of a book and I read it over several months, checking up on a lot of the source material and so on. It is basically flawless – I cannot find any serious holes in the account he presents and the argument he makes. I’m not saying this is the definitive truth, but it is a damn good book that is clearly the result of a very good investigation.

Since then I’ve read another book called Double Cross, written by Sam Giancana Jr and Chuck Giancana, which is a scurrelous piece of filth. I cannot speak highly enough of Donald Wolfe’s book or lowly enough of the Giancanas’ book. I will get into exactly why I hate Double Cross a bit later on, but first I guess we need to get into exactly what we’re talking about here, so those of you who know virtually nothing about this case, like I did a year or so ago, can get caught up.

The Official Story of Monroe’s Death

Marilyn Monroe died on August 5th 1962, officially the cause of death was suicide, that is the public version of events. A gorgeous but depressed actress who wanted to be taken seriously but who was always given barbie doll bimbo roles deliberately overdosed on sleeping pills.

And there is some evidence supporting this – she certainly died due to drugs. The toxicology, blood and liver tests from her autopsy are conclusive – she had enough drugs in her system to kill three people. She was certainly on sleeping pills – there are famous pictures of her bedside table with as many as 8 empty pill bottles there. She was certainly depressed – all sources agree she suffered from insomnia, high stress, serious mood swings – what would now be called bipolar depression. She had overdosed or tried to overdose before, though from the sound of it these were suicidal gestures, not genuine attempts to kill herself.

So, all of this information was dumped out in public and on the whole people bought the idea that she killed herself. However, rumours appeared virtually straight away that she had been murdered, with fingers pointing in the direction of the Kennedy brothers. It was quite well known even at that time that she was close to both brothers and most people in the know assumed they were both having affairs. Since then quite a lot of books have been written and lots of TV documentaries have been made, most of which are quite dreadful.

The Autopsies

I’ve been watching these TV shows online recently and one that you should avoid at all costs is a channel 5 show called Autopsy, and the whole thing fudges the issue and even gets basic facts wrong and tries to make out that she accidentally overdosed. To substantiate this they got in celebrity pathologist Dr Richard Shepherd, who basically took the autopsy report and some other medical files on Marilyn Monroe and came to this conclusion, flatly denying any of the ‘conspiracies’ around her death. Funny how people confuse the term ‘conspiracy’ which is primarily a legal term for a crime involving multiple people, with the term ‘conspiracy theory’ which is, when properly used, a theory about a crime involving more than one person. You would have thought a professional, very senior pathologist who has testified at many trials would be able to make that distinction.

But then, this Richard Shepherd has a curious proximity to a number of deep state events or possible deep state events including 9/11, when he was sent to the US to take responsibility for the bodies of British victims, and the death of Princess Diana. And in this show he indulges in the laziest logic imaginable, where for example he denies that Marilyn Monroe was given any injections that evening, by possible murderers, because the autopsy report doesn’t mention any needle marks. He basically assumes the autopsy report is a full, complete account with no possibility of error. Which was, of course, what he was presumably paid to do as part of this TV show.

The problem is that the report is no such thing. The coroner who carried out the autopsy, Thomas Noguchi, has cast all kinds of doubts on its validity. The actual cause of death given was ‘probable suicide’, which is not the sort of thing a coroner usually writes on a report. One might ask, why was this job given to a deputy coroner, a very junior official. Then you look and see that Noguchi himself became a celebrity coroner, performing the autopsies on among others Robert Kennedy, Sharon Tate and John Belushi, he became chief coroner for LA county very early on in his career, only 5 years after Marilyn Monroe died, and perhaps most curiously of all, the character of Quincy in the TV show of that name is based on Thomas Noguchi.

Yet Noguchi himself wasn’t at all sure how Marilyn Monroe had died. For one thing he found that there was no residue of drugs – half dissolved pills and so on – in her stomach. None whatsoever. So this woman who was supposed to have taken dozens of pills, enough to kill three people, had no evidence of pills in her system. Clearly she did not die by taking too many pills – deliberately, accidentally, by force, whatever. There are stories that Noguchi initially refused to put his name to a ruling of suicide but was ordered to by higher ups. I’m not sure how convinced I am by that, but the point is that anyone advocating either the suicide or death by accidental overdose theories has to address this point of the lack of pills in her system. And they can’t, so they usually don’t.

Instead they point to empty pill bottles on her bedside table. What they won’t say is that all the pill bottles have their tops neatly screwed back on. Because what a woman who apparently strips naked and swallows dozens of pills is really concerned about is putting the tops back on the bottles. And besides, there was no evidence of pills in her system. There was evidence of drugs, but not drugs administered in pill form.

So, that’s a bit like people saying that someone shot themselves, and as evidence pointing to an empty revolver on their bedside table, but avoiding the fact that the autopsy found no bullet wounds and no bullets in the body. Or accusing men of using a brown sludge you found in a bathroom in Leeds to blow up trains and a bus in London when you can’t find any trace of the sludge in London and most of it didn’t prove to be explosive when you tested it. It’s the nature of the compelling visual spectacle that shuts down serious inquisitive thinking. They show you the photo, they tell you what they want you to believe, they leave out all the relevant information that would let you know it isn’t true.

So if she died due to drugs and they weren’t a deliberate or accidental overdose, that only really leaves murder. Unless we’re saying someone else accidentally gave her enough drugs to kill three people. I’ve yet to come across that one, but no doubt there’s some idiot in a dark corner of the internet trying to claim that theory.

The Marilyn Monroe Murder Scenarios

And admittedly, it is in the murder scenario that things get a little murkier. I am not at all sure if this part is true – it rings true to me, I think I believe it and if asked to give an opinion this is the one I would give, but I’m not trying to be definitive here. So I’m going to point you to a full two hour show on The Opperman Report with two specialists on this who have written a more recent book on the case which, at least from what this interview says, agrees with Wolfe’s account and is credible and well sourced. I implore you to listen to the whole thing, including the aftershow call in segment, because I’ve been struggling to find good media online about this case but this show, like a lot of Ed Opperman’s work, is excellent. And if you’re looking for someone to subscribe to who produces great content for his members, I can wholly recommend the Opperman Report.

I should say, the guests on this particular show are Jay Margolis and Richard Buskin and their book is The Murder of Marilyn Monroe: Case Closed. I have not read this book, but I as I say I do find their account credible and well sourced and in keeping with the core of Donald Wolfe’s investigation, which I am strongly endorsing. So I’m going to play you a series of clips now to try to tell the story of Monroe’s death as these two authors see it, and broadly as I see it. These clips are about 20 minutes in total but this is all, to my mind, vital information so I’ll interject between each bit so you can distinguish each clip and then I’ll sum up afterwards the important take away information. So, clip 1:

And clip 2, with some more background.

Clip 3 – on these surveillance tapes and what they apparently show about the evening she died:

Clip 4 –  So then it was after Robert Kennedy and these two dirty cops left that the murder actually took place:

So obviously the question is who was Ralph Greenson and what was his connection to Marilyn Monroe and the Kennedys? This last clip which is about 5 minutes long I think answers that question pretty well:

So that was five excerpts from The Opperman Report on The Murder of Marilyn Monroe: Case Closed with Jay Margolis and Richard Buskin and I hope that gets you all caught up on what I think is the credible account of how Marilyn Monroe died.

The Credible Version

So I’m going to quickly recap and add in a few more details from Donald Wolfe’s book and my own looking into this:

John F Kennedy and Robert Kennedy were both having affairs with Marilyn Monroe and during the pillow talk and possibly just in conversation were leaking secrets to her. In particular, secrets about the attempts to kill Fidel Castro and the Cuban Missile Crisis, or what would become the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Monroe wrote down a lot of her opinions and things that had been said to her in a diary. This was known to both the FBI and CIA, it seems. In the months before her death, FBI chief J Edgar Hoover went to Kennedy and told him that he knew all about the affair with Marilyn Monroe and told him to break it off and keep his other affairs quieter. JFK did break it off with Marilyn, told her to stop calling the White House and so on and she was not impressed, as people usually aren’t when they are rejected. Robert Kennedy continued to see her for a while but then he too made it clear that he wasn’t going to leave his wife for her, which he had promised to do but obviously wasn’t going to do, and he broke off the affair with her as well.

According a private investigator who had bugged Marilyn Monroe’s house to try to get dirt on the Kennedys, apparently for Jimmy Hoffa, Robert Kennedy was at Marilyn Monroe’s house the day she died, and they had a blazing row. Kennedy wanted Monroe’s diary, but she wouldn’t tell him where it was, threatening to do a kiss and tell and reveal to the world what kind of men he and his brother really were. Kennedy’s presence at the house is well substantiated and I’m inclined to believe this is what was going on.

Kennedy is at the house with two goons who helped in subduing her by injecting her with sedatives while Robert Kennedy held a pillow over her face. This is what gets mangled up and turned into the ‘Kennedy killed her by suffocating her with a pillow story’, which then gets refuted by the likes of Channel 5 and that pathologist talking head prick, thus steering people away from the real allegations.

So, with her subdued they try to find this diary and can’t. Marilyn then recovers somewhat, starts fighting with them again, so, the two goons hold her down and give her a drug enema. She used an enema for dietary reasons and to cope with the side effect of the drugs she was on in day to day life, and they apparently used it to give her more drugs and knock her out again. They give up trying to find the diary and leave.

The housekeeper then discovers her unconscious on the bed, and she calls for an ambulance and then calls Ralph Greenson, Monroe’s psychiatrist. As the ambulance men are reviving Monroe, Greenson apparently intervenes and injects her with some kind of brown fluid direct to the heart. She then dies a moment later.

Greenson, Kennedy and Peter Lawford who is deeply mixed up in all this, are pulled over by a cop not far from Marilyn’s house not long after the witnesses say Greenson injected her with the heart needle. The suggestion is that Greenson killed her on behalf of Kennedy etc because of the threat of exposure. That Greenson was, in effect, the Kennedys’ weapon.

So, that is the version in Donald Wolfe’s book, and in Margolis and Buskin’s book too. However, in the name of honesty I do want to highlight the fact that there is an alternative view which is recorded in a report in her FBI file. Indeed, she was under some kind of FBI investigation or surveillance from 1955 right up until her death. The reason is that she hung around with a high number of Hollywood leftists, including some who were Communists, either ideologically or institutionally, or both. Her husband Arthur Miller, her third husband, I should say, was a socialist though at the time he and Marilyn got together he was actually becoming more of an anarchist. Don’t we all, in time?

The FBI, Communism and Marilyn Monroe Conspiracy Theories

This is a recurring problem at the time – a decent number of the writers, actors and so on who were under surveillance for being communists were actually anarchists. Whether that was intentional, or just that a lot of people in Western intelligence didn’t understand the differences and were not, of course, political philosophers of any kind.

But getting back to Monroe’s FBI file – when she died they did collect some newspaper clippings and stories about her being murdered, like with so many of these things the conspiracy theories have been around pretty much since day one. The file also includes, in the cross-references section not in the main file, a report from a former special agent who is currently Field Representative, Appointment Section, Governor’s office of state of California. This is from October 1964, 2 years after Monroe’s death, so if someone wants to look up who this person was I imagine you could find out. But whoever he was, he advised that ‘he does not know the source and cannot evaluate the authenticity of the information.

The report goes on to describe her affair with Robert Kennedy and how out of this came a plot to get Marilyn to unwittingly commit suicide by drugging herself with seconal. This conspiracy apparently involved Peter Lawford, the housekeeper Eunice Murray and her publicist Pat Newcombe. However, it exonerates Ralph Greenson completely, saying that while he was called that night he did not show up until after Monroe was dead.

So this rumour, documented and released by the FBI, contradicts the story I think is the most plausible and well evidenced one. I am only really pointing this out to try to be comprehensive, I am not supporting this version. All these documents, Monroe’s FBI files, this particular report and the CIA memo I will get into shortly, will be linked up on spyculture.com.

However, as per usual I have another way of looking at this that I want to offer to you because it always struck me as very interesting. I’m not saying this is necessarily the truth either, it’s just something for you to consider.

Was Ralph Greenson a Spy?

Among other things Ralph Greenson was a Communist. And not just in the ‘someone once pointed the finger at him’ or ‘Hoover thought he was a Communist’ sort of way. He was a member of the Comintern, the international Communist political organisation. Thus, as a psychiatrist to the stars he had access to a lot of what we might call Secret Hollywood. Therefore, and I’m sure some of you have just put two and two together like I did, he would have been of tremendous intelligence value not just to US intelligence, but more probably and more logically to the KGB. I haven’t seen any direct evidence that Greenson was a spy for the Soviets, though I haven’t looked in any great depth. I’m just floating a hypothesis.

He was ideologically loyal, he had reasons to seek the protection of the KGB because he was prone to compromising himself, and he had access to information that the KGB would have been interested in. Why wouldn’t they have recruited him?

And since we know that the CIA were aware of what was going on around Marilyn Monroe we can only assume they had eyes on Greenson as well. So if Greenson was spying for the Soviets then the CIA would have known about it, probably. If their aim was, just to take a stab in the dark here, to neutralise Greenson without killing him, or even if the aim was to turn him, to get an asset in Hollywood who also worked as a double agent for the KGB, either way, it makes sense for them to compromise him by having him kill Marilyn Monroe. After all, the Kennedys were involved with the mafia, the CIA were using the mafia to try to overthrow or kill Castro, Marilyn knew about this because of her relationships with the Kennedys and the Mafia, the CIA knew that she knew. So I’m just hypothesising here that maybe the CIA or someone within the CIA was a hidden hand in all this.

The Marilyn Monroe CIA Memo

Which brings us neatly to the CIA memo on Marilyn Monroe, which is perhaps more interesting than the whole FBI file, though perhaps not. This document emerged via Timothy Cooper, a UFO Majestic 12 researcher who has since decried all the materials that were apparently leaked to him in the early 1990s, and he now thinks they are all fake.

On the other hand I did come across the site BlackMesaPress.com which is the publishing site for a book by a guy called Dr Donald R Burleson called UFOs and the Murder of Marilyn Monroe. He thinks the CIA memo is authentic, and I’ll quote from the site here because it is quite interesting:

‘This is a CIA document that appeared sometime in the early 1990s and has been (unwittingly) authenticated by the CIA itself, in that when Dr. Donald R. Burleson, author of UFOs and the Murder of Marilyn Monroe, filed his appeal of the CIA’s refusal to release transcripts of government wiretaps on Marilyn Monroe’s telephones, the appeal, which was based largely on the 3 August 1962 document in question, was accepted; ultimately no transcripts were released, but the acceptance-of-appeal process did demonstrate that the document is of authentic CIA provenance. The CIA could have denied the authenticity of the document and could thus have turned the appeal down, but they did not. It is contrary to Agency policy to accept any Freedom of Information Act request or appeal based on documents which the CIA does not acknowledge to be authentic; so, tacitly, they acknowledged that the document is genuine.’

Now, I don’t think this is watertight. It is quite convincing, and I have filed a FOIA with the CIA for a copy of this memo to see if I can get them to once and for all put this one to bed. But the argument presented by Dr Donald Burleson here does leave room for doubt. His appeal to try to get transcripts released was accepted – all that really proves is that the CIA does have some transcripts. It does not prove that this memo, which refers to transcripts of wiretaps on Monroe’s phones, is authentic. Though he’s right, they could have just said that the memo was fake and rejected the appeal on those grounds, so there’s a good chance it is genuine.

Enter James Jesus Angleton

Which would be very interesting because this wiretap report, apparently dated just before she died, apparently signed by counter-intelligence chief James Jesus Angleton, refers to conversations Bobbie Kennedy had with Marilyn Monroe and conversations that reporter Dorothy Kilgallen had with Howard Rothberg, a Hollywood agent. They mention some UFO and alien related stuff, including this story about JFK visiting an air force base and seeing the bodies of aliens there. Which could be true, I guess, but is equally likely to be JFK remembering an acid trip.

It goes on to mention that Monroe was unhappy at how she was being treated by the Kennedy brothers, that she had threatened a ‘tell all’ press conference, that she kept a diary of secrets and that she knew about secret plans to try to kill Castro. All of which is confirmed by other sources, again suggesting that this document could be genuine, or is a very well made hoax, possibly an internal CIA hoax, of course.

So, this diary, apparently known to Angleton, disappeared. The coroner does say that he saw the diary among her personal affects at the time of the autopsy, but that it then went missing. There are all kinds of claims about who has this diary and obviously I have not got a clue, but to me it does add up as part of a motive for murder. I will also say that this does bring to mind the story about Mary Pinchot, the wife of CIA agent Cord Meyer who was also a mistress of JFK. She was murdered in October 1964 in her home, and the following day Angleton broke in and stole her diary. Make of that what you will.

Disaster Capitalism

The final element to all this that I want to talk about is, rather inevitably, the disaster capitalism angle. Because there are a lot of books, TV shows and so on devoted to this story, most of which are pretty dreadful from what I can tell, only seeking to exploit the public curiosity about this disaster – the death of an iconic celebrity. Whether they are strictly capitalistic, i.e. whether they are exploiting that for money, varies from piece to piece but some of them certainly are, and most of them are certainly capitalising on the disaster for one or another purpose.

Now, I have talked about this before, particularly the alt media’s nasty habit of engaging in disaster capitalism. Episode 45 of ClandesTime, on the sinking of the Titanic, which I think is one of the best podcasts I’ve ever done, goes into this so I’ll point you in that direction if you have not already listened. As I’m sure you can imagine, I have nothing but contempt for this behaviour.

Meanwhile, there are quite a lot of people who are slightly Marilyn-obsessed, if you listen to the full Opperman report show on this case you’ll see that Jay Margolis is a little starstruck, but at the same time his research is excellent, and I’m not criticising him, just saying I’m different. I’m not a big fan of Marilyn Monroe, it’s not really about that for me. It’s about understanding, or trying to understand, what happened, what factors were at play, what this was all about.

One factor which really angers me is the misogyny involved. JFK and RFK, and indeed a lot of the Kennedy clan, had little or no respect for women. They treated them terribly, and this murder is perhaps the most tangible and horrible example of that. But they were not the only ones. A lot of the men, and for that matter women, in Marilyn Monroe’s life were leeching off her in one way or another. Whether it was money, fame, sex – she was exploited repeatedly.

Double Cross and why the Giancanas are shitbags

A post-mortem example of this comes via the book I mentioned earlier – Double Cross by Sam and Chuck Giancana – the son and brother of the famous mobster Sam Giancana.  This book is a piece of scurrilous filth, I do not believe most of what is in it. The basic story it tells is that the Mafia and the CIA were basically the same organisation in this period – the 50s and 60s, and that the CIA colluded with the Mafia to kill JFK. That old chestnut. Now, it’s possible that Mafia hitmen were hired to do the wetwork, and of course Oswald was killed by a Mafioso Jack Ruby, but the notion that the CIA and the Mafia were completely integrated, working side by side in an equal partnership is ridiculous. Since its inception the CIA has been the much more powerful organisation – more people, more money, more influence, more capabilities.

So Double Cross is clearly a piece of self-aggrandising bullshit from a guy who killed people for a living. It is utterly tabloid, and even if Chuck and Sam Jr are being honest in their account of what Sam Giancana told them, what he told them is mostly untrue, and overall completely misleading.  Despite the claim to reveal the truth about the murder of Marilyn Monroe, her name only appears in about 8 pages of this 450 page book. That should tell you how little they are actually revealing, if anything, and of course how little she mattered to Sam Giancana and the authors of this book. Her death was just a way for them to make some money and fame. Meanwhile, there’s no mention of Ralph Greenson, funny that.

Now, Marilyn Monroe did know mob figures, she was friends with Frank Sinatra who was mobbed up to the gills. But the picture this book paints of her is basically as a prostitute who was ‘more comfortable with her clothes off than on’, who was sleeping with everyone imaginable. The book completely rewrites the trip Monroe made to the Cal Neva lodge and casino shortly before her death – a casino owned at that time by Frank Sinatra and frequented by mobsters. According to Sam Giancana she was not drugged and raped, but offered herself to him. He claims he had ‘had her many times before’ but he slept with her knowing that she was about to be killed.

Because Double Cross claims that Monroe was a CIA asset, of sorts, a seductress used by them to compromise political leaders all over the world, including JFK and RFK. According to the book it was her knowledge of the relationship between the CIA and the Mafia, along with her emotional instability and threats to go public, that got her killed. Allegedly, the CIA approached Giancana and asked him to have her eliminated.

Even the exact murder scenario makes no sense. The Giancanas claim that RFK and one other man, not two, visited Monroe earlier in the evening, and that they listened in on them having a blazing argument. RFK then order the other man ‘evidently a doctor’ to give her a shot, a sedative, to calm her down. They then left.

Enter the mob assassins, who supposedly taped her mouth shut and gave her a nembutal suppository, which the book claims is the perfect murder weapon because it would drug her, kill her, just as quickly as an injection but without leaving a needle mark for the pathologist to find. But the pathologist could have found the needle mark from the original drugging, the sedative given by the friend of RFK. So this whole scenario makes no sense whatsoever.

The whole book comes across like the elaborate fabrication of a complete psychopath, willing to say and do anything to further his aims. From the made up description of the murder to the painting of Monroe as a harlot, to rewriting the sickening drugging and raping of her at Cal Neva and turning it into a seduction story. Everything about this tells me that Sam Giancana was a misogynistic psychopath, a complete piece of shit. His son and his brother are hardly any better than that.

The Lessons of the Murder of Marilyn Monroe

So what are the lessons in all of this? What constructive, positive ideas can we take from this absolute horror show of a story? When I first tried to answer this question it proved very difficult. I admit, this whole thing really got to me, I occasionally had tears in my eyes when reading Donald Wolfe’s book, though they were more tears of anger than sadness. I guess those emotions are quite similar anyway.

But I am disgusted by how most of the men in Marilyn Monroe’s life treated her, though I will say that two of her husbands, in fact all three, but the two really famous ones, Arthur Miller the playwright and Joe DiMaggio the baseball player, were honourable men. Even though she was a bit messed up, she made some good decisions vis a vis the men in her life. Indeed, by most reports Joe DiMaggio hated both the mobsters and RFK and privately promised to murder them for what they had done. So even though I have no personal stake in any of this, in this story I very much identify with Joe DiMaggio. He had the right idea. Obviously when it came to Kennedy he never got that opportunity, because someone, we assume the CIA, took care of that vile piece of scum. One of those rare occasions when I actually smile while thinking about a CIA assassination.

But I don’t smile when I think about Marilyn Monroe. I get angry. I get very fucking angry. Learning about this has been the final nail in the coffin of any sympathy I had for the Kennedys so I will say that’s one lesson we can learn here. Even the darlings of the conspiracist-revisionist version of history are often complete shitbags, barely human scum who frankly got what was coming to them, like the Kennedy brothers. So that’s lesson number one – the Kennedy clan are complete bastards. We should stop making out like they were the last best hope for America and the Free World, that they were fighting against the New World Order. They were sex addicted narcissists who got out of their depth and got taken out. So fuck them, with both fists and both feet. And just to draw a parallel between the Kennedy brothers with a modern figure – when you look at JFK or RFK, you’re looking at Russell Brand.

Lesson two – the life expectancy of beautiful women in Hollywood is not that long. It is not the place where dreams come true, or if it is, it is equally if not more so the place where nightmares become reality. So avoid it like the plague, and just like when a friend suggests joining the military and you try to explain to them that they’ll only be serving oil companies and weapons manufacturers and not their countries or their communities, do the same if any of your friends, children, whoever want to become celebrities. And if comes to it, tell them this story. Explain to them that one of the biggest stars of them all was murdered in cold blood for political reasons. Let alone all the kids who turn up on buses with dreams of stardom and end up being lapdancers and drugs mules to make ends meet.

Lesson three – there is no resolution to this case, because all of the culprits are dead. They will never stand trial, though you could argue that many of them were punished for what they did. I even take a little grim satisfaction in that. But it’s ok that there won’t be a resolution, a legal resolution at least, just as there hardly ever is in such cases. It’s OK because in the grand scheme of things, everyone dies, quite a lot of people are murdered, and as with all tragedy those of us who are left pick up the pieces and move on. We can learn a lot about the way the world really works from these pieces of history, and can steel ourselves against these things, because they undoubtedly still go on. And indeed, that is all we can do, socially, culturally, philosophically. Political and legal resolution is often impossible. But they aren’t all that matters, and this case, this story, highlights that as well as anything.

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