By Michael Collins Piper — AFP
July 14, 2008
Although Newsweek said Mrs. McCain’s family "is deeply rooted in Arizona," and that her late father, Jim Hensley, "was one of the most prominent men in the state," who was "a World War II bombardier . . . shot down over the English channel,"—in other words, a war hero just like McCain—Newsweek did not even hint of the racketeering and corruption (and murder) associated with Hensley and his patrons in his rise to power.
Newsweek said Hensley "borrowed $10,000 to start a liquor business" which became one of the largest Anheuser-Busch distributorships in the country and pointed out that the vast Hensley influence and fortune (worth $200 million) "got [McCain] access to money and connections" after he divorced his ailing first wife and married his then-mistress, Cindy Hensley, and settled in Arizona where he first ran for office in 1982. What Newsweek chose not to mention is what AFP previously reported:
McCain’s father-in-law got his start as the top henchman for Kemper Marley, who, for 40 years until his death in 1990, was the undisputed political boss of Arizona, acting as the behind-the-scenes power over both the Republican and Democratic parties. But Marley was more than a politician. He was the Meyer Lansky crime syndicate’s chief Arizona operative, front man for the Bronfman family—key players in the Lansky syndicate.
This may have been diaried already - can't seem to find it using search - but if so, I'll delete. If not - I ask why aren't more "journalists" looking into this story?
This section is particularly compelling:
However, in 1948, 52 of Marley’s employees (including Jim Hensley, the manager of Marley’s company) were prosecuted for federal liquor violations. Hensley got a six-month suspended sentence and his brother Eugene went to prison for a year.
In 1953, Hensley and (this time) Marley were prosecuted by federal prosecutors for falsifying liquor records. But a young attorney,William Rehnquist, acted as their "mouthpiece" (as mob attorneys are known) and the two got off scot-free. Rehnquist later became chief justice of the Supreme Court and presided over the "fix" that made George W. Bush president in a rightly disputed election.
The story in Arizona is that Hensley took the fall for Marley in 1948 and Marley paid back Hensley by setting him up in his own beer distribution business. Today, Newsweek implies Hensley’s company was a "mom and pop" operation that became a big success, but the real story goes to the heart of the history of organized crime.
In a detailed blog:
Cindy Lou Hensley McCain, Married to the Mob
Questions are raised about his links to the murder of investigative journalist Don Bolles:
And Kemper Marley and his associates in the Mafia weren't people whose business you interfered with lightly.
On June 2, 1976, Bolles climbed into his car and was blown apart by a bomb under the driver's seat. Pieces of his body were strewn around the parking lot. Bolles amazingly survived for eleven days and said to investgators on the scene, "They finally got me. The Mafia. Emprise. Find John (Harvey) Adamson." Adamson was later convicted of the murder. But who hired him? That trail was never really followed up on, according to members of the Arizona Project, a group of reporters who began looking into mob ties after the murder.
Following Bolles' death, more than 30 journalists from the then-newly formed Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE) group arrived in Phoenix to carry out their late colleague's work....
Don Devereux, another Arizona Project reporter, feels the IRE team may have trusted the authorities too much. "We accepted very uncritically their scenario. In retrospect, we were very naive to get lead around. It really isn't something that we should be running around congratulating ourselves about," says Devereux of the IRE investigation...
Comments are closed on this story.