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July 30, 2014


What We Still Don't Know About Richard Nixon

Evan Thomas: "Richard Nixon taped roughly 3,700 hours of his conversations as president. About 3,000 hours of those tapes have been released, while the rest remain closed to protect family privacy or national security. The public has a general impression of what's on the Nixon White House tapes--the expletives deleted, the so-called "smoking gun" when Nixon appeared to try to use the CIA to derail the FBI investigation of Watergate, the slurs against blacks and Jews."

"But very few people have actually listened to more than a few hours of tapes. Less than five percent of the recordings have been transcribed or published. The tapes... will in time give us a much clearer and more accurate picture of Richard Nixon. Two tapes-based books published this summer, timed to the 40th anniversary of Nixon's resignation on August 9, 1974, go a long way toward showing Nixon's underappreciated geopolitical genius and how he became the victim of his own emotionalism."

The books he reviews: The Nixon Tapes by Douglas Brinkley and Luke Nichter and Chasing Shadows by Ken Hughes.












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