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Ear to the Ground

The Pentagon Papers Go Public

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Posted on Jun 13, 2011
AP

Daniel Ellsberg speaks to reporters outside the Federal Building in Los Angeles on Jan. 17, 1973. Behind him is co-defendant Anthony Russo.

It’s been 40 years since Daniel Ellsberg took his place in history as the whistle-blower who blew the lid off the American government’s shameful secrets about the Vietnam War by leaking the Pentagon Papers. On Monday, Americans can read those documents in full for the first time, courtesy of the National Archives, and though there may or may not be more surprises among their pages, their full release is significant in and of itself.

Click here to see the declassified report.  —KA

BBC News:

The National Archives will formally release all 7,000 pages on Monday.

President Richard Nixon’s attempts to block the publication led to a landmark court ruling that gave the media more power to investigate public officials.

The move to publish the so-called Pentagon Papers has caused a flurry of speculation over what may be left to discover about a war that divided the nation.

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Blackspeare's avatar

By Blackspeare, June 14, 2011 at 6:59 am Link to this comment

It is interesting to note that under the so called Patriot Act all
of Nixon’s machinations in dealing with Ellsberg would today be
legal.

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By Frosty46, June 13, 2011 at 12:55 pm Link to this comment

40 long years of hiding the truth——-what a great country of
liars, cheats, con-artists, and thugs!

Wouldn’t it be wonderful to live in a country that had a
Democratic form of governance, honest elected officials, and
a military complex that was controlled by the citizens—-oh
almost forgot the most important part—honest, fair and
unbiased media.

We Americans will never see any of these dreams come true,
we live in a plutocratic morass of liars, cheats and thugs and
are governed by corporate lackies!

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By gerard, June 13, 2011 at 12:17 pm Link to this comment

Urgent:  Go directly to the London Guardian June 13 (today) and read Ellsberg’s article “Why the Pentagon Papers Matter Now”.  A clear and couragoues statement on the right of citizens to know what is going on. Here’s what he says about the immediate need for releasing documents containing information about the wars:

“Yet, we’re not likely to get these ever within the time frame they’re needed. The WikiLeaks’ unauthorised disclosures of the last year are the first in 40 years to approach the scale of the Pentagon Papers (and even surpass them in quantity and timeliness). But unfortunately, the courageous source of these secret, field-level reports – Private Bradley Manning is the one accused, though that remains to be proven in court – did not have access to top secret, high-level recommendations, estimates and decisions.”

Question:  Why doesn’t Truthdig pick up Ellsberg’s article itself and print it here?  It’s much more relevant than the BBC report.

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rico, suave's avatar

By rico, suave, June 13, 2011 at 11:31 am Link to this comment

Why am I not surprised that truthdig would call Nixon out for not wanting to release the papers? He was merely protecting classified documents. The real villains of the 7000 page report will be shown to be JFK and LBJ.

Oh, wait. That must mean that Ellsberg was actually a Republican and this was a false flag operation (a favorite excuse for truthdiggers) done to make Democrats look bad.

And then there’s the inconvenient truth that that paranoid, fascist, imperialist Nixon was the one who actually ended LBJ’s war, got us out of Southeast Asia, which allowed Ho Chi Minh to turn South Vietnam into a workers’ paradise, and let Pol Pot permanently correct the bad bourgeoise behavior of some 3 million of his fellow Cambodians.

Can’t wait to read the spin from truthdiggers.

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By gerard, June 13, 2011 at 11:16 am Link to this comment

Regarding Wikileaks:  Consider the source of vague allegations totally without substantiation. Max Boot of the Weekly Standard?  Max Boot who supports the present US wars?

Consider the fact that, BEFORE RELEASE,  “the newspapers involved COOPERATED WITH THE US GOVERNMENT to ensure that the information they published did not imperil lives.”

Consider the fact that wars cannot be promoted minus lying about their virtue and their necessity. Actually, wars have no virtues and are not necessary—except to make money for weapons-makers and keep the Pentagon in business. The stated purpose
of “diplomacy” is to prevent wars and if wars are not prevented, it’s proof that the “diplomacy” is bad,  not the release of facts regarding that “diplomacy.”

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