Woodward And Bernstein Reveal Shocking New Details About Richard Nixon

Richard Nixon

40 years after the Watergate burglary, the Washington Post reporters who blew the lid off the scandal say that the scope of President Richard Nixon’s misdeeds was far worse than they originally thought. 

In a lengthy retrospective for this Sunday’s Post, Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward revisit the story that made them famous, and explain why Watergate was just a small window into the “massive campaign of political espionage, sabotage and other illegal activities” that were the “way of life” in Nixon’s White House. 

The story is, in part, an attempt to debunk what Woodward and Bernstein view as the commonly accepted myth that the Watergate cover up was worse than the crime. Through a series of shocking anecdotes and recordings, the reporters reveal new details about the depth of Nixon’s racism, paranoia, and corruption. 

Nixon approved a top-secret plan to increase electronic surveillance of anti-Vietnam War activists, authorizing the CIA, the FBI, and the military to intercept mail and lifting restrictions on break-ins.

Nixon's aides advised him that the plan was illegal, but the President approved it anyway.

Ultimately, FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover rejected the proposal, but Nixon continued to obsess about these methods, and still implemented them often.

Source: Washington Post

Nixon had a vendetta against one specific anti-war protester, Daniel Ellsberg, who leaked the Pentagon Papers in 1971.

The publication of the Pentagon Papers in The New York Times sent Nixon into 'rants and rages' recorded on tape, according to Woodward and Bernstein.

Although Ellsberg was already under indictment, Nixon ordered ex-CIA agent Howard Hunt and former FBI agent G. Gordon Liddy to break into Ellsberg's psychiatrist's office to find information that could discredit him in the anti-war movement.

Source: Washington Post

A year before Watergate, Nixon had his aides break into the liberal-leaning Brookings Institute, which reportedly had a file on former president Lyndon B. Johnson's handling of the 1968 bombing halt in Vietnam.

Although Nixon called for the break-in several times, it never happened, for unknown reasons.

Source: Washington Post

Nixon's anti-Semitic rages were well-known to his staff, and White House tapes reveal the extent of his paranoia.

The Senate Watergate committee uncovered several instances of sabotage directed toward Edmund Muskie, a Democratic presidential candidate.

Nixon's campaign paid Muskie's chauffeur $1,000 a month to photograph internal memos, schedules and strategy documents.

Another trick included stealing Muskie's staffers' shoes left in the hotel hallways to be polished, then throwing the shoes in the dumpster.

Source: Washington Post

Nixon also kept tabs on Senator Edward Kennedy, telling staffers he wanted to dig up dirt on Kennedy's sex life and get pictures of him in compromising situations.

Nixon's staff even placed a retired Secret Service agent who had once worked for Nixon on Kennedy's security detail.

Source: Washington Post

In the 20 years after his resignation, Nixon worked tirelessly to minimize his role in the Watergate scandal.

Now check out some political legacies that have fared a lot better....

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