Ellsberg: All Nixon’s Crimes Against me now Legal

Daniel Ellsberg (Website here) interviewed on CNN’s “In the Arena”:

Courtesy Martin Torsleff

[CNN:]These days, when you find yourself thinking about Richard Nixon, what comes to mind?

[Ellsberg]: “Richard Nixon, if he were alive today, might take bittersweet satisfaction to know that he was not the last smart president to prolong unjustifiably a senseless, unwinnable war, at great cost in human life. (And his aide Henry Kissinger was not the last American official to win an undeserved Nobel Peace Prize.)

He would probably also feel vindicated (and envious) that ALL the crimes he committed against me–which forced his resignation facing impeachment–are now legal.

That includes burglarizing my former psychoanalyst’s office (for material to blackmail me into silence), warrantless wiretapping, using the CIA against an American citizen in the US, and authorizing a White House hit squad to “incapacitate me totally” (on the steps of the Capitol on May 3, 1971). All the above were to prevent me from exposing guilty secrets of his own administration that went beyond the Pentagon Papers. But under George W. Bush and Barack Obama,with the PATRIOT Act, the FISA Amendment Act, and (for the hit squad) President Obama’s executive orders. they have all become legal.

There is no further need for present or future presidents to commit obstructions of justice (like Nixon’s bribes to potential witnesses) to conceal such acts. Under the new laws, Nixon would have stayed in office, and the Vietnam War would have continued at least several more years.

Likewise, where Nixon was the first president in history to use the 54-year-old Espionage Act to indict an American (me) for unauthorized disclosures to the American people (it had previously been used, as intended, exclusively against spies), he would be impressed to see that President Obama has now brought five such indictments against leaks, almost twice as many as all previous presidents put together (three).

He could only admire Obama’s boldness in using the same Espionage Act provisions used against me–almost surely unconstitutional used against disclosures to the American press and public in my day, less surely under the current Supreme Court–to indict Thomas Drake, a classic whistleblower who exposed illegality and waste in the NSA.

Drake’s trial begins on June 13, the 40th anniversary of the publication of the Pentagon Papers. If Nixon were alive, he might well choose to attend. ”

For more on Drake see this posting.

Posted in Uncategorized | 13 Responses | Print |

13 Responses

  1. If the date chosen for the trial doesn’t paint a vivid picture of the mentality of the ‘establishment’, then I don’t know what does. One might almost postulate that there must be some degree of vindictiveness at work here, some twisted form of ‘generational memory’ at play. You can’t help but wonder…

  2. —- he was not the last smart president to prolong unjustifiably a senseless, unwinnable war—–

    if he means Bush, that’s one thing.

    trying to pin that on Obama fails.

  3. OK, if you won’t pin it on Obama, I will. Sigh. Why does everything fall to me.

    Hopefully it won’t be long before all intelligent liberals + progressives who’ve been brainwashed into scoffing at anything labeled a “conspiracy theory” realize it’s now more often about fact than theory… and that they got pwned.

      • I’d guess she’s referring to one that begins with “A” and ends in “fghanistan”.

        Or do you consider that “winnable” in any meaningful sense?

        (Note: my personal opinion is that it is in some regards a “sensible” war, but it is nevertheless also “unwinnable”).

        • Brian, I regard it as sensible, and it was winnable as we achieved the end of the Taliban governance and ousted AQ and their camps.

          TB, we’re not mjuch in Libya and we’re not fighting a war in Iraq.

  4. I’d like to know who successfully argued that the principles that have motivated Americans to give of themselves voluntarily and inspired, when necessary, to sacrifice their lives, are no longer applicable. It appears that there is a warehouse full of arrogance to lead some to believe a regime of strict punishment, control through deception, and disrespectful manipulation are all that is necessary to make Americans submit to their opinions and decisions based on those opinions.

  5. yes Nixon would be proud. to boldy go where no president had before. to be the first in the destruction of the American Constitution and American Republic. to show the way to use power and prove the ends justifies the means.

    and Obama is showing how power corrupts so completely. in the name of liberty destroying all concepts of liberty.

    amazing how living through that era of “i am not a crook!” and unindicted co conspirators led to this display of hubris.

    i have heard the american indians always said “the white man speaks with a forked tongue,”or so the movies i saw said. Guess that was too much truth to tolerate their presence with.
    funny how we wiped them out so they could no longer say that.

    American Exceptionalism is truly a light burning down the world.

  6. Thnx, Dr. Cole, for telling me about this. I would have missed it.

    I remember following Mr. Ellsberg’s tribulations when I was in high school. I thought Sam Ervin and Hillary Rodham had seen to it that this would never happen again.

  7. Democracy in the US is going the way of the dodo bird. As in fascist Italy and Nazi Germany electoral politics is little more than theater with the corporate elite writing the script. It is time take our lessons from the ME and move our politics to the steets.

  8. It seems to show that there were people who thought Nixon did nothing wrong, and over a period of decades, cunningly rearranged all of the parts of the American system,

    to accomplish what is described by Mr. Ellsberg.

    Pretty remarkable really. all in plain sight.

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