Jump to content

Nixon's version of the Warren Commission


Guest Mark Valenti
 Share

Recommended Posts

Guest Mark Valenti

This is from Stanley Kutler's "Abuse of Power:"

September 11, 1972: Haldeman proposes to Nixon and Colson the creation of a "Warren-type Commission to determine whether the Department of Justice investigation (of Watergate) has been exhaustive and thorough."

HALDEMAN: Yet another ploy that we haven't perfected yet, but you might go off your chair (laughter); you won't like it. I'm not sure it's so bad even with all the complications, which is that we announce with the delivery of the indictments that we're now instructing the Justice Deparment and requesting all other Departments to turn over to (laughter)...

COLSON: To the CIA?

HALDEMAN: No. No, to a blue ribbon commission, all of the facts in this case, as has been suggested, to review the question of whether a proper and thorough investigation has been conducted, to be chaired by - we would request the commission be chaired by Earl Warren, staffed or backed up by (former Solicitor General J.) Lee Rankin and (former Justice) Tom Clark.

Now, those folks are judicious enough that they would not want a criminal case pending, saying the (commission) could be prejudicious. What they would say is that they had reviewed the investigative procedures followed by the FBI and the Department of Justice and found that they were exhaustive and thorough; we are sure that the investigation has been so complete that the record on its face will show that it is.

Now what you're doing is taking the issue away from McGovern, because he has said he wants Warren and Rankin appointed to conduct an independent inquiry. You say, fine. Or a special prosecutor. We wouldn't ever do that.

...

COLSON: You could have the Attorney General set this up.

NIXON: I don't think I should do this.

COLSON: No, no. Kleindienst...He says I believe this is the most thorough investigation since the assassination of John Kennedy, and...

HALDEMAN: I would be happy to turn this over to a panel of Chief Justice Warren, Justice Clark.

NIXON: Well, you can pick up old (former Justice Stanley) Reed. Pick him up, too. All former Justices of the Supreme Court. That's all right.

HALDEMAN: I put Rankin and Warren in as Republicans, and Fortas and Clark in as Democrats. You have a bipartisan commission. Obviously, Warren chairs it, Chief Justice...

NIXON: Is there any standing group that we could turn it over to?

COLSON: That you wouldn't give it to the Goddamn Bar Association.

NIXON: Yeah, well, I'm just thinking if the Judicial...

COLSON: The Judicial Conference?

NIXON: I mean, if you name a group, you got to ask them to serve. I'd like you to really look at that. Take them all, take them months to find out what the hell the story is (laughter).

COLSON: Especially those guys. They're too old to get around, I'm afraid (laughter). Warren would love to serve because he'd love to be back in the limelight. He did the Warren Committee...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is from Stanley Kutler's "Abuse of Power:"

September 11, 1972: Haldeman proposes to Nixon and Colson the creation of a "Warren-type Commission to determine whether the Department of Justice investigation (of Watergate) has been exhaustive and thorough."

HALDEMAN: Yet another ploy that we haven't perfected yet, but you might go off your chair (laughter); you won't like it. I'm not sure it's so bad even with all the complications, which is that we announce with the delivery of the indictments that we're now instructing the Justice Deparment and requesting all other Departments to turn over to (laughter)...

COLSON: To the CIA?

HALDEMAN: No. No, to a blue ribbon commission, all of the facts in this case, as has been suggested, to review the question of whether a proper and thorough investigation has been conducted, to be chaired by - we would request the commission be chaired by Earl Warren, staffed or backed up by (former Solicitor General J.) Lee Rankin and (former Justice) Tom Clark.

Now, those folks are judicious enough that they would not want a criminal case pending, saying the (commission) could be prejudicious. What they would say is that they had reviewed the investigative procedures followed by the FBI and the Department of Justice and found that they were exhaustive and thorough; we are sure that the investigation has been so complete that the record on its face will show that it is.

Now what you're doing is taking the issue away from McGovern, because he has said he wants Warren and Rankin appointed to conduct an independent inquiry. You say, fine. Or a special prosecutor. We wouldn't ever do that.

...

COLSON: You could have the Attorney General set this up.

NIXON: I don't think I should do this.

COLSON: No, no. Kleindienst...He says I believe this is the most thorough investigation since the assassination of John Kennedy, and...

HALDEMAN: I would be happy to turn this over to a panel of Chief Justice Warren, Justice Clark.

NIXON: Well, you can pick up old (former Justice Stanley) Reed. Pick him up, too. All former Justices of the Supreme Court. That's all right.

HALDEMAN: I put Rankin and Warren in as Republicans, and Fortas and Clark in as Democrats. You have a bipartisan commission. Obviously, Warren chairs it, Chief Justice...

NIXON: Is there any standing group that we could turn it over to?

COLSON: That you wouldn't give it to the Goddamn Bar Association.

NIXON: Yeah, well, I'm just thinking if the Judicial...

COLSON: The Judicial Conference?

NIXON: I mean, if you name a group, you got to ask them to serve. I'd like you to really look at that. Take them all, take them months to find out what the hell the story is (laughter).

COLSON: Especially those guys. They're too old to get around, I'm afraid (laughter). Warren would love to serve because he'd love to be back in the limelight. He did the Warren Committee...

There's a bit on this in Coincidence or Conspiracy? as well. It is MORE than a coincidence that, come time to investigate the Watergate break-in, Nixon wanted Warren Commission/LBJ loyalists to take the lead. He wanted Warren and Clark (Ramsey Clark's father, reportedly on Marcello's list of pay-off recipients) on the commission. He also wanted Rankin to run it. When he had Cox fired, he pushed for Jaworksi as the replacement (Jaworski had worked on the Texas Court of Inquiry investigation of the assassination). Later, he met with Arlen Specter, and tried to get Specter to function as his personal attorney.

This is a clear-cut indication (to anyone with half a brain) that Nixon believed the Warren Commission was a cover-up, and was hoping the "cover-uppers" would provide him this same service. No such luck.

Edited by Pat Speer
Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is a clear-cut indication (to anyone with half a brain) that Nixon believed the Warren Commission was a cover-up

It's my recollection that Nixon stated on one of the Watergate tapes that the Warren Report was "the biggest hoax" (or "one of the biggest hoaxes") "ever perpetrated on the American people."

Edited by Ron Ecker
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Mark Valenti
This is a clear-cut indication (to anyone with half a brain) that Nixon believed the Warren Commission was a cover-up

It's my recollection that Nixon stated on one of the Watergate tapes that the Warren Report was "the biggest hoax" (or "one of the biggest hoaxes") "ever perpetrated on the American people."

To me the most telling part is the schoolboy giggling.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is a clear-cut indication (to anyone with half a brain) that Nixon believed the Warren Commission was a cover-up

It's my recollection that Nixon stated on one of the Watergate tapes that the Warren Report was "the biggest hoax" (or "one of the biggest hoaxes") "ever perpetrated on the American people."

It turned out this quote was taken out of context by the BBC. Nixon was talking to Haldeman about the attempt on Wallace. He mentioned that even though Oswald was a leftist, some elements of the media convinced people it was a right-wing conspiracy. This was the "greatest hoax ever perpetuated" to which Nixon referred, not the Warren Commission. The BBC put out a statement about the tape that misrepresented the quote. CNN, however, showed the whole transcript on a broadcast, and this showed the quote in its proper context.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...