WHITE HOUSE TAPE DOCUMENTS
MILITARY MOVES AGAINST NIXON
Participants Radford and Stewart agree
that an attempt was made to overthrow the President
See the sidebar stories to the right
SEVEN DAYS IN DECEMBER:
ESPIONAGE AND TREASON IN THE WHITE HOUSE
In a scenario that seems straight from the pages of a Hollywood screenplay, the events that played out during seven days in December 1971 revealed that the Pentagon had poised itself against the White House. The Pentagon's Chief Investigator W. Donald Stewart remarked: "When we broke [Yeoman Charles E.] Radford that night, that's where I got the Seven Days in May idea. I said Jesus Christ, here's the military actually spying on the President of the United States . . . this is a hanging offense."
Even Nixon himself declared that the Joint Chiefs had committed "a federal offense of the highest order." Oval Office meeting 12/21/71
Authors Len Colodny and Tom Shachtman provide the framework with which to understand these seven pivotal days. While an article cannot explore the great details regarding this historical event, this site provides documentary evidence in print and streaming audio and video. These resources present the military spy ring from its discovery through its cover up and beyond providing a comprehensive understanding of this unprecedented event in American history.
As one reviews the material on this web site concerning the Moorer/Radford affair, the view of the of the military leadership at the time, was that we were fighting the Vietnam war, in order to contain communism in the Soviet Union and China. That as Nixon was secretly behind their backs dealing directly with the Chinese, and cutting a deal to engage with them, our soldiers were fighting and dying in Vietnam under the old policy of containment. So as you can see the is not a black and white picture, this in fact is a very complex situation, which we are now able to review and debate from all points of view .
An apt analogy from the military's point of view was that Nixon's visit to China, in the middle of the Vietnam war, would be akin to what the reaction would have been, if Roosevelt in 1943 had gone to Berlin and toasted Hitler.
Len Colodny 12/7/01
The complete story.
Counter Punch's "The Nixon Story You Never Heard"
by Dr. Joan Hoff
Thirty years ago, in mid-December of 1971, an event occurred that was unique in American history -- the unraveling of a plot against the President of the United States, one that had been hatched by the Joint Chiefs of Staff in the Pentagon. When President Richard M. Nixon found, to his enormous surprise, that his own military chiefs were spying on him, he took some interesting as well as drastic actions.
For thirty years, neither the spy ring nor those actions have been well understood. Now, on the thirtieth anniversary of the event, the Nixon Era Center will make public some materials, including an enhanced Nixon White House tape and transcript, that will answer such heretofore unresolved questions: "What did the President know about the spy ring? When and how did he learn about it? What did he order done about it?"
It is a story that could have come right out of the pages of a novel:
In November 1970, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Thomas H. Moorer, upset at the way Nixon and National Security Advisor Henry Kissinger were running the war in Vietnam, pursuing détente with the Soviets and an opening to China, and believing that Nixon was selling out the United States to the Communists, set up a spy ring inside the National Security Council office at the White House. Its purpose was to steal the President's most important secrets, and with them to undermine his policies.
The spy ring ran for thirteen months and stole thousands of pages of White House secret documents and delivered them to the offices of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
The first inkling that the White House had of this spy ring came in a Jack Anderson column of December 14, 1971; entitled "US Tilts to Pakistan," it revealed information that could only have come from inside the highest levels of the Pentagon or the White House.
During the next seven days, investigators in both institutions sprang into action, and soon found the immediate culprit, a yeoman (Charles E. Radford) working in the NSC offices. His confession, and within days, that of his superior, Admiral Robert O. Welander, led to the dramatic events of December 21, 1971.
On that day, the President learned of the spy operations in all its minute details, and made a fateful decision, one that would deeply affect the course of his administration and be a factor in its demise in 1974. When told of the spy operation, Nixon declared it a "federal offense of the highest order." But he did not demand that anyone be prosecuted. Rather, he covered up what he learned that day, and re-appointed the chairman of the Joint Chiefs. The spy ring and his actions this day would remain the deepest and most closely held secret of his Administration. The President was even willing to keep it secret during the Watergate scandal, when revealing it might well have saved his presidency; and in later years he refused to acknowledge the truth about it even when confronted with the strongest available evidence. He took the secret to his grave.
Now, however, through the efforts of the Nixon Era Center, which has technologically enhanced a recently released Nixon White House tape, and compared its declarations with evidence from other materials in the Center's collection, the truth about what happened can be revealed.
The materials below will give readers the necessary background information on what became known as the "Moorer-Radford Spy Ring," and enable those interested to put the newly-released and enhanced tape in context.
These documents and recording are being released as part of the Nixon Era Center's mission to give America its history back by enabling the comparing of standard versions of events with those now emerging from close examination of the documentary and primary source materials in the Center's growing collections.
While this brief article is intended to raise many questions in the
mind of the curious reader, many of the answers to your questions
will be provided through the links below. It is crucial that you read
through the materials provided in order for you to have an
appreciation of the events that transpired and how they affected the
history of the United States. What you will read challenges the
conventional wisdom put forth over the past 30 years.
- White House Tape December 21, 1971 transcript and audio
A conversation between Nixon, John N. Mitchell, John D. Ehrlichman and H.R. (Bob) Haldeman in the Oval Office. Admirals Moorer, Zumwalt and Welander are implicated on this tape.
- Interview with Admiral Thomas H. Moorer [excerpt].
On January 27, 1987, Len Colodny interviewed Admiral Moorer regarding the Spy Ring. In this interview, Moorer both denies and admits his role in this affair. A transcript and Real audio file are included.
- Interviews with John N. Mitchell [excerpt].
Len Colodny interviewed John N. Mitchell on numerous occasions. During the interviews of 6/19/85 and 6/7/86, Mitchell takes the position that Moorer was not involved in a spy ring. A transcript and Real audio file are included.