Mel Ayton: Interviewed about the RFK Assassination

Historians in the News

As the campaign motorcades and jets wiz in and out of cities and town across the U.S. this summer, there are hints and reminders of the campaign trail from 40 years ago. With arguable similarities to our current Democratic candidate, a candidate with a great vision for change and equality had managed to give a new generation of Americans hope after incredible tragedy. But too soon, here in our own fair city, Robert F. Kennedy’s life and work were tragically cut short by the hand of what some saw as a mad man.

In his book “The Forgotten Terrorist: Sirhan Sirhan and the Assassination of Robert F. Kennedy”, Mel Ayton discusses Kennedy’s assassin Sirhan Sirhan, the evidence at the scene and the conspiracies surrounding the case. At the time, the Sirhan was seen as having no motive for the slaying of RFK. But with further investigation into his life, Sirhan is revealed as a young many with strong anti-Semitic views and blamed not only the U.S., but RFK himself for the plight of the Palestinian people. Putting conspiracy theorists to the test, Ayton reveals the political motivations behind Sirhan’s actions.

Mr. Ayton spoke with us about his research, the current campaign and what a modern investigation might reveal in the following interview.

LE: What reactions have you had from the book so far?

MA: I think my book has been well received especially by those journalists and writers who have some knowledge of this case. I am speaking particularly about writers like Dan Moldea, Pat Lambert, Gus Russo and Max Holland who are experts in their understanding of how JFK, RFK and MLK conspiracy writers have constructed their false theories through their use of poor research methods and abuse of the evidential record. Conspiracists, of course, will never accept Sirhan’s act was essentially terrorist in nature as they believe he was a ‘hypnotized patsy’ probably working for the CIA.

LE: How have people accepted or refuted your description of Sirhan as a “forgotten terrorist”?

MA: Aside from the conspiracy buffs, who believe Sirhan had no motive at all, there are some who believe that Sirhan’s crime solely had a personal dimension to it. His life was essentially a failure. He had tried to become a jockey but failed. He wanted a relationship with a woman but it appears he was hopeless at that too. And he wanted a job with status and wealth but his educational attainments were limited. All of these ambitions became beyond his reach and it sent him into a fit of depression and despair. His act can therefore be seen as a response to these failures ‐ a disillusioned misfit who vented his anger on American society which he deplored. In other words, he wanted to show he could succeed at something and that Arabs had ‘guts’, as Dan Moldea described it.

However, there is a wealth of evidence to show that Sirhan was not faking when he insisted his act was political in nature. And his act of terrorism does not contradict the personal motive as terrorism experts like Steve K. Dubrow-Eichel recognize. Dubrow_Eichel stated: “Fanaticism….sometimes … involves betrayals and deep disappointments at the hands of close friends, family, loved ones…”....
Read entire article at http://www.la.cityzine.com

comments powered by Disqus