Intern claims 18-month White House affair with JFK
Feb 7, 2012, 1:27 GMT
New York - A former White House intern claims in a new book that she carried on an 18-month affair with US President John F Kennedy, ended only by his assassination in 1963 in Dallas.
Mimi Alford, now a 69-year-old grandmother and retired New York church administrator, made the claims in a new book called Once Upon a Secret: My Affair with President John F Kennedy and its aftermath.
The book is to be released Wednesday. Excerpts from an advanced copy were published Monday by the New York Post.
According to Alford, the affair began when she was a 19-year-old debutante whose high society connections scored her a summer internship in the White House press office. Four days into the stint, she was offered the chance to join the legendarily rakish US president for his daily swim, and was then invited to attend an after-work party with him in his quarters later that night.
Aides to the president loaded her up on daiquiris before the dashing, 45-year-old JFK took her on a personal tour, which quickly became sexual once they reached the bedroom of his absent wife Jackie Kennedy.
Alford, who was a virgin at the time, recounts the initial seduction in details that would not be out of place in a steamy romance novel.
'Slowly, he unbuttoned the top of my shirtdress and touched my breasts,' she recalled. 'Then he reached up between my legs and started to pull off my underwear.'
She said she was powerless to resist: 'The fact that I was being desired by the most famous and powerful man in America only amplified my feelings to the point where resistance was out of the question. That's why I didn't say no to the president. It's the best answer I can give.'
Alford said the affair continued unabated for 18 months, every time the president and his glamorous wife were apart. They listened to music, took baths, and the president even taught her to make scrambled eggs, she said.
While the president could often be attentive, he also could be brusque.
'There was always a layer of reserve between us, which may explain why we never kissed,' she writes. 'The wide gulf between us - the age, the power, the experience - guaranteed that our affair wouldn't evolve into anything more serious.'
Alford even said that he once ordered her to perform oral sex on his aide, Dave Powers. She complied, but the president later apologized. Kennedy once forced her to inhale the drug amyl nitrate at a Hollywood party, she claimed.
The excerpts gave little insight into JFK's political thinking, beyond one startling revelation about the Cuban missile crisis, which is thought to be the closest the US and the Soviet Union ever came to nuclear war. 'I'd rather my children red than dead,' he told her.