Misc. English Newspapers 12-15-1971 West Germany’s Bonnie and Clyde (LA Times)

A quite long, omnibus-style Lost Angeles Times article exploring the Baader-Meinhof Group, written at the height of their public support and well before their bombing campaign of the following May. The article lays out the false “Bonnie and Clyde” meme probably more completely than any other source. Early western media reports were obsessed with equating Baader and Meinhof with American prohibition-era outlaws Bonnie and Clyde, whose exploits had been explored in a popular Warren Beatty movie from a few years earlier.

We know now that despite what this and other articles claim, Baader and Meinhof were not lovers, and in fact the true female leader of the group was clearly Gudrun Ensslin.

The article is also notable for mentioning both the terms “Red Army Faction” and “Baader-Meinhof Gang.” It’s also notable that female gang members are referred to as “girls.”

Despite the problematic nature of portions of the article, much of it is an outstanding contemporary assessment of the Baader-Meinhof Gang at mid-career.

PDF: 12-15-1971 West Germany’s Bonnie and Clyde