Did Henry Kissinger Push Nixon To Assault Daniel Ellsberg?

An 18-page investigation memorandum has been obtained by NBC News that raises some disturbing questions about the Nixon White House and specifically the role of former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger.  The memo details the campaign of political violence by Nixon aides.  The memo references a plot to have Daniel Ellsberg beaten up by surrogates of the Nixon Administration.  Kissinger has been cited as one of those pushing Nixon to deal with Ellsberg.


Ellsberg was the subject of the theft of medial records.  He was a military analyst who worked for RAND corporation and released the Pentagon Papers, a study that contradicted critical statements about the Vietnam war.  He was charged under the Espionage Act of 1917 along with other charges of theft and conspiracy, but those charged were dismissed on May 11, 1973.  Ellsberg long maintained that Nixon sent Cuban assets to  “to incapacitate [me] totally.” Nixon denied the allegation.

However, this June 5, 1975 memo by Watergate special prosecutor Nick Akerman details evidence that Nixon operatives plotted an “assault on antiwar demonstrators” at a rally at the U.S. Capitol featuring Ellsberg.  The memo includes the result of an interview with Roger Stone who was involved in some of the most controversial activities of the Nixon staff.  Notably, Stone is now known to be a close adviser to President Donald Trump.

The memo says that the men would assault “long-haired demonstrators, in particular Ellsberg.”  Stone has insisted it was Henry Kissinger who was pushing Nixon to deal with Ellsberg.  He stated “The Nixon administration’s paranoia about Daniel Ellsberg is driven by Henry Kissinger. You can hear him in the tapes: ‘He’s a pervert, Mr. President. He must be dealt with, Mr. President.'”

Ironically, Kissinger recently also met with Trump.

The memo suggests President Nixon was informed of the operation because aides John Ehrlichman and Bob Haldeman believed that the operation “might someday hurt the president” if links to the operatives were ever uncovered.

32 thoughts on “Did Henry Kissinger Push Nixon To Assault Daniel Ellsberg?”

  1. The one thing Trump, Nixon, Kissinger and Stone all have in common is that they voluntarily swore a supreme loyalty to the U.S. Constitution – which includes protecting the Bill of Rights of all persons on U.S. soil.

    As part of their oath of office, each one of them promised to uphold the 1st Amendment and 4th Amendment. The 1st Amendment legally “restrains” government officials from retaliating for legal constitutional exercises. The 4th Amendment “restrains” searches of non-criminals not based on probable cause of a crime.

    Each voluntarily agreed to that loyalty contract as a condition of employment and of having authority over us little people – they were all disloyal to that supreme loyalty oath.

  2. Well, Professor Turley, welcome to the character assassination club. As a member, you will hobnob with some devious individuals!

    If you believe anything put out by NBC news, then perhaps you will believe me when I tell you that I own the moon!

  3. I have it on good authority that Trump has, indeed, ripped the tags off of his mattress. More than once. Sad.

  4. Providing a link to the source document that is the subject of the post would have been more helpful than embedding links to: a Wiki entry about the Pentagon Papers; the Espionage Act; and two links showing that Roger Stone and Henry Kissinger know Trump.

  5. I wasn’t going to comment on this trashy article but for the fact that it was mentioned it might have been written by an intern. I generally like what Turley writes whether or not I agree with him, but this article was a piece of garbage not written at the level of one who is usually a careful and deep thinker. I’m new to this list so I wonder if he has stated whether or not he writes all of these pieces.

    I take note of a bit of character assassination that has been intentionally written in this article.

    “The memo references a plot to have Daniel Ellsberg beaten up by surrogates of the Nixon Administration. Kissinger has been cited as one of those pushing Nixon to deal with Ellsberg.”

    This is a gratuitous attempt to link Kissinger with the idea of beating up Ellsberg without any proof what so ever.

    “The memo includes the result of an interview with Roger Stone who was involved in some of the most controversial activities of the Nixon staff. Notably, Stone is now known to be a close adviser to President Donald Trump.”

    Another attempt at character assassination. I can’t believe an intelligent legal mind would want to leave this statement without further detail and proof.

    “The Nixon administration’s paranoia about Daniel Ellsberg is driven by Henry Kissinger. You can hear him in the tapes: ‘He’s a pervert, Mr. President. He must be dealt with, Mr. President.”

    I believe Nixon to be somewhat paranoid, but was Kissinger driving that paranoia in this quote? Maybe Kissinger’s use of the word pervert was in context and correct at least in Kissinger’s mind.

    Then the author of the article goes on to write, “ Ironically, Kissinger recently also met with Trump.” and leaves it hanging. Kissinger has met with many if not all Presidents since hist term as Secretary of State. Why make it sound as if this were a crime?

    Had this been the first article I read on the blog I would have immediately signed off. I hope Mr. Turley explains this posting and hope it was done by an intern for this posting demonstrates a lot of lower level spiteful thinking that is trying to make a point without proof.

    1. Excellent post Allan! We’ve seen more of this lately on JT’s blog and several of us have made similar comments on other threads. Please do stick around as your objective analysis is a welcome addition.

      1. Thanks Oily. I don’t care if I disagree with Turley. I do think that this bit of character assassination is beneath him. I know of Turley from what he has done and said off this list. This article sounded nothing like the Turley I know and respect. I think that such writing under his name is dangerous for his reputation as I now have to doubt the facts he brings to the table and worry about his intellectual honesty.

        If I see more of this type of rhetoric this blog will become meaningless to me and I will probably sign off.

  6. Daniel Ellsberg had just started at the Pentagon in 1964 when the conflicting accounts of the Gulf of Tonkin incidents were transmitted to the Pentagon.
    Ellsberg evidently saw the contradictory communiques that cast doubt on the initial reports of a second Gulf of Tonkin attack.
    LBJ himself knew that there probably was no second GOT attack, but sent the request for the Gulf of Tonkin resolution following the second alleged attack on a U.S. ship.
    Only two ( of 535) members of Congress voted against that Resolution, used as the basis for ramping up American involvement in the war.
    There were c. 20,000 American advisors in Aug. 1964 at the time of the GOTR.
    Maybe 500 American military KIA at that point.
    By the time LBJ left office in 1969, there were c. 540,000 American servicemen in Vietnam.
    By the time that Ellsberg gave the Pentagon Papers to the New York Times for publication, about 53,000 Americans had been KIA.
    The remaning c. 5,000 KIA were after mid-1971 (when the Pentagon Papers were published).
    The bulk of American casualties were in 1965, 1966, 1967, 1968, 1969, and 1970.
    The relatively low U.S. casualties after the end of 1970 corresponded to the withdrawal of c. 70% of American troops from Vietnam, and a decreased involvement in ground combat operations of those remaining troops.
    I don’t know if Ellsberg was in a position in August 1964 to publically question the basis for the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution.
    But there was limited,if any, impact on the course of the war by releasing the Pentagon Papers in mid-1971.
    Whatever potential there was for warding off the massive escalation of the war existed in 1964 or 1965, not in 1971 when the U.S. was rapidly reducing ( and had already reduced) American troop levels.
    Sen. Fulbright, was example, was reputed to be an “early” critic of the Vietnam.
    And he was one ofvthe earlier critics of the LBJ escalation.
    But as chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, he was also instrumental in getting near-unamious Congressional support for the GOT Resolution.
    He discouraged meaningful debate, and likely convinced vascillating Senators ( with the exception of Sen. Morse and Sen. Gruening) to support it.
    And he did this knowing that LBJ could use the Resolution in lieu of a declaration of war to commit huge numbers of American troops.
    The actions of those like Daniel Ellsberg, John Kerry, or Sen. Fulbright seem like “too little, too late” to have had a real impact on the course of our Vietnam foreign policy.

  7. There was no ‘campaign of political violence’.

    Lewis Fielding, MD, was one of the few private citizens injured by the Nixon Administration. Howard Hunt and Gordon Liddy organized a burglary of his office which found nothing of note. Morton Halperin and Daniel Ellsburg misappropriated government documents entrusted to their care. These two men do not merit much visceral sympathy. Lawrence O’Brien, whose office was burgled by the Liddy-Hunt crew, merits more. You really cannot have that sort of black op contra your political adversaries in a well-ordered system. (O’Brien was employed for quite a run of years by Lyndon Johnson, not the most scrupulous man on the block). The rest of the Nixon Administration’s malfeasance consisted of unsuccessful attempts to take care of the Hunt-Liddy crew financially and keep them quiet, wiretaps of administration appointees suspected of leaking documents, four sets of plans which were never implemented (tax audits contra the president’s enemies, a domestic wiretapping plan drawn up by a Mr. Houston, Charles Colson’s half-baked scheme to fire bomb the Brookings Institution in order to retrieve Halperin’s pilferage, and Liddy’s Operation Gemstone), and practical jokes played on the Democratic Party (for which Donald Segretti was sent to prison).

    While we’re at it, the Obama Administration got away with using the IRS against it’s enemies, not to mention domestic surveillance programs (see Sheryl Atkisson), not to mention serial rounds of blatant lying. Partisan Democrats are sociopaths.

    1. DSS,…
      Ironically, the break-in of the office of Ellsberg’s psychiatrist and some illegal wiretapping formed the basis for the “government misconduct” used by the trial judge to dismiss the charges against Ellsberg.
      He wasn’t “cleared” of the charges against him, but the “govenment misconduct” determination by the judge got him off the hook.

    2. So the finale of your false narrative justifying incredible crimes carried out by Nixon and his people is to declare Democrats are sociopaths? Projection much you sad, angry right wing extremist?

      1. But let’s face it. Since the 60’s, the Democrats are the sociopath party. The KKK, the SDS, the Weathermen, Antifa, BLM, the SJWs. During Nixon’s time in office, wasn’t it the Democratic Left who was planting bombs???

        Sorry dude, but it’s Democrats who currently hold the Most Violent Political Party belt.

        Squeeky Fromm
        Girl Reporter

      2. So the finale of your false narrative justifying incredible crimes carried out by Nixon and his people is to declare Democrats are sociopaths?

        Yup. Democrats refuse to acknowledge Clinton’s crimes or Obama’s or the degree to which the Department of Justice was turned into a lawfare operation. They are no longer capable of impartial judgment and impersonal standards.

  8. Considering Kissinger’s overall record as a war criminal, beating up on a “pervert” is small potatoes. Ellsberg is more believable that Kissinger, a practiced liar.

    1. Considering Kissinger’s overall record as a war criminal,

      The term ‘war criminal’ does not mean what you fancy it means. What’s amusing about you (and Jill and Autumn) is your continual resort to the language of accusation while simultaneously demonstrating you lack historical knowledge or even the capacity for seat-of-the-pants moral reasoning that any idiot has I’d have to say you’re the grossest of the three.

      There is not one person in this world who should take counsel from you.

      1. Kissinger is the dean of American war criminals, a large group.

        Hillary Clinton besmirched her name further (if that was possible) by courting him.

        1. Define ‘war criminal’.

          If you want to persuade people you’re a stupid crank, you’re succeeding.

  9. Trump, Trump bo bump.
    Nixon, Nixon bo Nixon.
    Banana fanna fo voters.

    Yes the voters are ever the same
    They vote for dorks and say their names.
    Like Dick the Trick friggin fo bo bick or
    Donnie Donnie who is so like Ronnie
    Thats the only rule that is so balmy.

    1. And remember, if you can, this bumper sticker:

      Don’t Change Dicks in The Middle of A Screw
      Vote For Nixon in “72!

  10. Why does this article read more like a gratuitous smear piece on Trump, than on a Kissinger-Nixon story??? because for the life of me, I can find no rational reason these two “breathless moment” links were included in the story:

    Notably, Stone is now known to be a close adviser to President Donald Trump.

    Ironically, Kissinger recently also met with Trump.

    Why “notably” and why “ironically.”??? What do links to anti-Trump stories in The New Yorker and CNN have to do with a story about Kissinger and Nixion???

    I suspect that JT did not write this piece himself, but instead some intern or student, probably female, and maybe even a little older than typical college age, and firmly ensconced in the Democratic Party Cult. Who thought they just “gotcha-ed” Trump in some silly way.

    Squeeky Fromm
    Girl Reporter

      1. Hey, “great minds” and all! I suspect the same of the other story, too, but the footprints aren’t definitive, sooo I withhold judgement on that one.

        For some reason, I am reminded of a story that I read in The Decameron, IIRC. About a man who was a complete rogue and scoundrel in life, but as he was dying in a town that knew him not, he made a “confession” to the priest about what a horrible person he had been. About how he had once bought food for himself out of a moment of weakness, instead of buying a meal for the poor. But darn, he was just a weak person because he hadn’t eaten in two weeks, to feed the poor instead. And how he would surely go to Hell, for the sin of pride, for singing too loud in church. etc. etc. etc. I mean the dude just laid it on the priest, who fell for it all.

        I forget the exact details of his “confession”, but anyway, the priests there were so impressed that they buried him with honors, and he later became a saint, maybe. This could have been in Balzac’s Droll Stories, or even Chaucer. Come to think of it, perhaps it was Saki, or O. Henry??? Maybe, Twain??? Whatever.

        Which this article reminds me of, because all you have are some baseless innuendos and the writer (the “priest”) runs with it, having bitten hook, line, and stinker, and does a great injustice to Mankind.

        Squeeky Fromm
        Girl Reporter

  11. There’s a new documentary of Roger Stone on Netflix. I needed a shower after viewing it.

  12. Lol. Yes corruption and destruction has been entrenched in our Govt. for a century. But why release the SECRET now, Rand Corp?
    Something for us to chew on, other than…..

  13. There are leaders and there are tacticians. The best leaders are good tacticians. However, great men and women who are not great tacticians, don’t often if at all make it to leadership. The predicament within which the US finds itself these days is where effective tacticians have made it to positions of leadership, effective tacticians but deplorable persons. Trump is the perfect example.

    Kissinger was and remains a deplorable person but an effective tactician. Without him the world would have been a better place today. One can appreciate his ‘calling it’ so accurately as can Trump’s calling tapping into the pent up frustration of Americans, so accurately. Unfortunately, there are no real answers to the problems with either Trump or Kissinger.

    The root of the problem lies with the American itself. The greatest potential leadership can present itself quietly and rationally, with detail, historicity, and logical cause and effect solution potential; the average American will simply turn the channel to the circus which is our oligarchical circus we insist is a democracy. America’s number one problem is its ego. Ego=denial.

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