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Indira Gandhi bitter, Martin Luther King phoney: Jackie Kennedy

Last updated on: September 13, 2011 11:26 IST

'Indira Gandhi a bitter, pushy, horrible woman'


Former United States first lady Jackie Kennedy described the late Indian prime minister Indira Gandhi as a "prune - bitter, kind of pushy, horrible woman," according to previously unreleased interviews.

The same interviews also highlighted her criticisms of former French president Charles de Gaulle, sister-in-law Eunice Shriver as well as her calling her late brother-in-law Joe Kennedy Jr "unimaginative" compared to her husband John F Kennedy, the Daily Mail reported.

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Image: Former Indian PM Indira Gandhi


'Charles de Gaulle, a spiteful man'

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The former first lady referred to de Gaulle, whom she famously charmed on a visit to Paris, as "that egomaniac" and "that spiteful man".

Jackie also said Kennedy Jr would not have been very imaginative as president when compared to her husband.

"You know, it shows you some people are ambitious for themselves and Bobby wasn't," the Daily Mail quoted her as saying in the interviews recorded 47 years ago.

Image: Former French first lady Madame de Gaulle, Former US president John F Kennedy, Former French president Charles de Gaulle with Jacqueline Kennedy outside the Elysee Palace, Paris
Photographs: Getty Images
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'Martin Luther King phoney'

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The interviews made with historian and former White House aide Arthur Schlesinger Jr in her 18th century Washington home in 1964 also reveal the first lady's loathing for black civil rights leader Martin Luther King, who she described as a "terrible man" and a "phoney".

Jackie further said her sister-in-law Eunice Shriver wanted Jack to make her husband Sargent Shriver head of the department of health, education and welfare so that she could be a cabinet wife.

Jackie told Schlesinger: "Eunice was pestering Jack to death to make Sargent head of HEW because she wanted to be a cabinet wife."

The interviews, titled 'Jacqueline Kennedy: Historic Conversations on Life with John F Kennedy' are due to be released on Wednesday to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the Kennedy-era administration.

Image: Black civil rights leader Martin Luther King

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Source: ANI