Nixon accused of smear ploy
Wednesday 09 December 1992
The charges, which have stirred a new flurry of controversy over the depth of political malice in the Nixon administration, appear in a report by the journalist Seymour Hersh in the New Yorker magazine. He writes that White House tapes held in the national archives carry recordings of Mr Nixon musing with his special counsel, Charles Colson, on how they might capitalise from the attempted assassination of Mr Wallace.
A spokesman for Mr Wallace, the former Alabama governor who was left paralysed in the legs after the attack and now is in poor health, yesterday demanded the release from the archives of all the Nixon tapes with any bearing on the shooting. Mr Wallace has long voiced suspicions that 'higher-up officials' plotted the attack on him, the spokesman said.
According to Mr Hersh, the tapes reveal that Mr Nixon and Mr Colson agreed shortly after Mr Wallace was hit to dispatch a former CIA agent, Howard Hunt, to the Milwaukee flat of the man who fired the gun to place in it political literature of the McGovern campaign. The apparent intention was to link Mr McGovern with the assassination attempt. The plan was abandoned, however, when the FBI sealed the apartment before Mr Hunt could get there.
Though Mr Hersh has not said whether he has listened to the relevant tapes, the report includes an interview with Mr Colson in which he confirms that the recordings capture 'the black side to our natures. It was both of us. We were spontaneous combustion'.
Mr Nixon has fought successive appeals for the release of the tapes. So far he has been successful, and access to them is theoretically limited to staff of the national archive.
'Nixon is winning one of the most significant battles of his life after Watergate: keeping the full story of what happened in his White House from the public,' Mr Hersh concludes. So far, lawyers for Mr Nixon have not commented on the New Yorker story.
The hidden tapes are also said to carry recordings of Mr Nixon talking about selling ambassadorships in return for political contributions, with a specific price for each post, and improperly discussing upcoming Supreme Court decisions with the then chief justice, Warren Burger.
The CIA agent, Mr Hunt, was among the group that broke into the offices of the Democratic Party in the Watergate complex two months after the attempt on Mr Wallace's life. It was Mr Nixon's involvement in trying to cover up the bungled break-in that eventually led to his flight from office two years later, just in time to avoid impeachment by Congress.
- 1 Green village to be bulldozed and mined for lignite in Germany's quest for non-nuclear fuel
- 2 HeForShe campaign: Iceland to follow up Emma Watson speech with UN women's rights conference – for men only
- 3 Car tax disc changes: Two days to go - and they affect you much more than just not displaying a piece of paper
- 4 Teenagers irritable because early school hours mess with their biological clocks
- 5 Now we know whose fault it is if you end up being murdered in Thailand
Isis could become 'world’s first truly terrorist state' and bomb UK with nuclear and chemical weapons, Theresa May warns
Car tax disc changes: Five facts you never knew about your (almost obsolete) tax disc
Five-year-old Iris Grace is raising awareness of autism through her extraordinary paintings
Isis an hour away from Baghdad - with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
The Aral Sea: Nasa pictures show how what was once the fourth largest lake in the world has become almost completely dry
Isis, we are told, is a 'clear and dangerous threat to our way of life'. I’m sorry, but I just don’t buy it
Exclusive: 'Putin's Russia has been my biggest regret,' says Nato's outgoing Secretary General
The Osborne Ultimatum: Chancellor’s benefits freeze bombshell will affect ten million households
There’s no excuse for Dave Lee Travis’s behaviour, but we need to keep a sense of proportion
Should gay sex be illegal? 16% of Britons think so
Mark Reckless becomes second Tory MP to defect to Ukip in a month
- < Previous
- Next >
£40000 - £50000 Per Annum Excellent benefits: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd:...
£50 per day: Randstad Education Cheshire: SEN Teaching Assistant EBD , Septemb...
£50 per day: Randstad Education Cheshire: SEN Teaching Assistant We are curr...
£100 - £135 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: We are currently recruitin...