|Nixon and Mao, 1972|
A few weeks ago I met Ellsberg to discuss his leaking of the Pentagon Papers -- the record of our involvement in Indochina -- which helped destroy the Nixon presidency and, eventually, bring an end to the war. We talked about the events of those days, secrecy itself, and the very fine POV documentary that goes up tonight on PBS, The Most Dangerous Man in America.
HERE is my piece from today's LATimes. Sobering stuff.
There's some fascinating stuff in the doc, some of which comes from Ellsberg's memoir of the period, Secrets, including tapes in which Nixon urges Kissinger to use nuclear weapons in the conflict. "I just want you to think big." Nixon also told his secretary of state: You're so goddamned concerned about the civilians and I don't give a damn. I don't care."