On this Day — US President Richard Nixon : “I am Not a Crook” (November 17 1973) [UPDATE : 50 Years of Deep Throat]

“And in all of my years of public life, I have never obstructed justice. And I think, too, that I could say that in my years of public life, that I welcome this kind of examination, because people have got to know whether or not their president is a crook. Well, I am not a crook. I have earned everything I have got.”

US President Richard Nixon  (November 17 1973)

“I answered questions from special counsel Robert Mueller very easily.” — US President Donald Trump (November 17 2018)

November 17 2020 — On this day, US President Richard Nixon famously stated that “people have got to know whether or not their president is a crook.” The rest is History. Follow us on Twitter: @INTEL_TODAY

RELATED POST: One Year Ago — Historian Webster Tarpley : Nixon Was Ousted By The CIA

RELATED POST: Nixon Goes To China [Humour]

RELATED POST: On This Day — Nixon Announces Vietnam Peace Agreement (January 23, 1973)

RELATED POST: Blast From The Past: Nixon & the CIA’s Daily Briefs

“Woodward story is based on an alleged memorandum from your national security adviser with lengthy quotes . … But I’ve come to the conclusion that Mr. Woodward is probably Deep Throat.”

Ronald Reagan (October 2 1986)

UPDATE (November 17 2021) — “Deep Throat” refers to an informant who divulges damaging information under cover of anonymity.

This expression is one of the most enduring legacies of the Nixon’s Watergate scandal. But do you actually know the origin of that expression?

The quickest answer is pretty well summed up at Wikipedia:

“Howard Simons, the managing editor of the Post during Watergate, dubbed the secret informant “Deep Throat”, alluding to the deep background status of his information and to the movie which was a cause of controversy at the time. The name was chosen due to the amount of publicity of the film and the ambiguity of its lacking an identifiable connection to the events.”

The movie “Deep Throat” was one of the first pornographic movies to gain mainstream attention. The title refers to oral sex and was in the public “eye”, so to speak, at the time of the coverage of Watergate.

It works so well on so many levels that it stuck in the public consciousness even with those unfamiliar with the movie title from which it sprang, especially after the movie based on Woodward and Bernstein’s book: “All the President’s Men”.

On October 2 1986, the Washington Post published an extraordinary story written by legendary journalist Bob Woodward: “Gadhafi Target of Secret U.S. Deception Plan”.

RELATED POST: 35 Years Ago — Gaddafi Target of U.S. Disinformation (October 2 1986 — Bob Woodward) [Disinformation Goes Mainstream]

Under orders from the White House, the US Intelligence Community was planting false information in the US media. As a result of this scandal, the use of the word ‘disinformation’ became mainstream in the English language.

In a desperate attempt to deny the facts, Reagan suggested that Woodward had made up the whole story. “I’ve come to the conclusion that Mr. Woodward is probably Deep Throat,” Reagan said.

Then just a few weeks later, the Lebanese magazine Ash-Shiraa exposed the Iran-contra scandal. As a result, the media largely forgot Woodward’s story…

X Files series creator Chris Carter has stated that the character of Deep Throat was “of course” inspired by the historical Deep Throat.

RELATED POST: Havana Syndrome — Chris Carter [X-Files] : “I Believe the Havana Syndrome and your government denied it.” [Intel Today : What was the motive of these attacks? Here is a plausible scenario.]

The real Deep Throat was an informant leaking information on the FBI’s investigation of the Watergate scandal to journalists Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward.

After the conclusion of The X-Files, this Deep Throat was later revealed to be FBI Associate Director Mark Felt.

Over the last two decades, many people have tried to identify the “Lockerbie Deep Throat”, a police officer who was known as The GOLFER.

RELATED POST: Lockerbie — Unmasking the GOLFER. Who was Lockerbie Deep Throat?

In May 2012, the Sunday Herald published the full Lockerbie Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission (SCCRC) 800-page report. For those who like statistics, this report contains 285,300 words, and a total of 1,384,109 (no space) characters.

The chapter regarding GOLFER was redacted to hide his identity. But one letter of just one word had been only partially redacted. After a bit of thinking, I came to the conclusion that this letter was a (Times New Roman) capital G. And that was all that was needed to start cracking a two-decade-old secret. 

“TRUST NO ONE”

END of UPDATE

“When the president does it, that means that it is not illegal.”Richard Nixon

On November 17 1973, President Richard Nixon was knee-deep in the Watergate controversy when he arrived at Disney’s Contemporary Resort to give his now infamous “I am not a crook” speech.

In an attempt to quell the outrage surrounding his presidency’s involvement with the scandal, Nixon spoke before the Associated Press Managing Editors annual conference, and it was actually during a Q&A portion of the speech where he blurted out the words that would ultimately define his legacy.

“I made my mistakes, but in all of my years of public life, I have never profited, never profited from public service — I earned every cent.

And in all of my years of public life, I have never obstructed justice.

And I think, too, that I could say that in my years of public life, that I welcome this kind of examination, because people have got to know whether or not their president is a crook.

Well, I am not a crook. I have earned everything I have got.”

The next day, in the Nov. 18 edition of the New York Times, the paper concluded that the president did a nice job acquitting himself:

“The president seemed composed and on top of the subject throughout the session, faltering perceptibly only during the discussion of his taxes.

In contrast with some of his recent appearances he did not berate his critics or his political enemies.”

Any resemblance to current events may not be purely coincidental…

Three years after leaving office, Mr. Nixon defended his actions to the British television personality David Frost: “When the president does it, that means that it is not illegal.”

A recent New York Times article about political sex scandals and technology highlighted the sense of invincibility some politicians seem to share: “Part of that has to do with politics, which self-selects for people with risk-taking behavior and a high degree of self-regard.”

Mr. Nixon said, “People have got to know whether or not their president is a crook.” Do you agree?

Would you rather have a leader who is honest but cannot affect change, or one who uses dishonest methods to achieve positive results?

Do you think politicians are more prone than others to behave unethically because they view themselves as above the law, or do you think that as public figures, they just receive more attention when their misdeeds come to light? Why?

Do you think that violations on the scale of the Nixon administration’s misconduct and subsequent cover-up could take place today? Why or why not?

Richard Nixon – “I’m not a crook”

REFERENCES

Nov. 17, 1973 | Nixon Declares ‘I Am Not a Crook’ — New York Times

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On this Day — Nixon : “I am Not a Crook” (November 17 1973)

On this Day — Nixon : “I am Not a Crook” (November 17 1973) [2019]

On this Day — US President Richard Nixon : “I am Not a Crook” (November 17 1973) [2020]

On this Day — US President Richard Nixon : “I am Not a Crook” (November 17 1973) [UPDATE : 50 Years of Deep Throat]

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