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Nixon & "The X Envelope"

By The Reverend Published: March 18, 2013

This is a must read if you remember the names Richard Nixon, Lyndon Johnson, J.Edgar Hoover....Vietnam and Watergate.

Shortly after Nixon took office in 1969, FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover informed him of the existence of the file containing national security wiretaps documenting how Nixon’s emissaries had gone behind President Lyndon Johnson’s back to convince the South Vietnamese government to boycott the Paris Peace Talks, which were close to ending the Vietnam War in fall 1968. (Rev: please re-read that sentence) the new President (Nixon) was taking steps in 1969 to extend the war another four-plus years, he sensed the threat from the wiretap file and ordered two of his top aides, chief of staff H.R. “Bob” Haldeman and National Security Advisor Henry Kissinger, to locate it. But they couldn’t find the file. 

Find what? "The X Envelope."

President Johnson, who privately had called Nixon’s Vietnam actions “treason,” had ordered the file removed from the White House by his national security aide Walt Rostow.

Richard Nixon knew the file existed because J.Edgar Hoover told him it did. Obviously, if that file became public, Nixon's political goose would have been thoroughly cooked.....much sooner that it actually happened. Nixon wanted that file....and he wanted that file very badly. From previously unreleased audio tapes, June 17, 1971....

“Do we have it?” Nixon asked Haldeman. “I’ve asked for it. You said you didn’t have it.”

Haldeman: “We can’t find it.”

Kissinger: “We have nothing here, Mr. President.”

Nixon: “Well, damnit, I asked for that because I need it.”

Kissinger: “But Bob and I have been trying to put the damn thing together.”

Haldeman: “We have a basic history in constructing our own, but there is a file on it.”

Nixon: “Where?”

Haldeman: “[Presidential aide Tom Charles] Huston swears to God that there’s a file on it and it’s at Brookings.”

Nixon: “Bob? Bob? Now do you remember Huston’s plan [for White House-sponsored break-ins as part of domestic counter-intelligence operations]? Implement it.”

Kissinger: “Now Brookings has no right to have classified documents.”

Nixon: “I want it implemented. … Goddamnit, get in and get those files. Blow the safe and get it.”

Haldeman: “They may very well have cleaned them by now, but this thing, you need to –“

Kissinger: “I wouldn’t be surprised if Brookings had the files.”

Haldeman: “My point is Johnson knows that those files are around. He doesn’t know for sure that we don’t have them around.” (Johnson did know Nixon didn't have the files, because Johnson had ordered them hidden)

Ever hear of Watergate? Do you remember why Richard Nixon resigned the presidency?

The official story of Watergate has been that President Nixon ordered the break-in of the Democratic National Committee headquarters at the Watergate office complex, "the ostensible purpose of which was to photograph documents and install listening devices."

The pressing question in those days was, why would a president risk ordering a burglary of the Democratic headquarters? What sense did that make? What was so important for Nixon to find that he would risk his entire presidency on some goof-ball, small-ball-yet-still-felonious break-in?

Now we know .....the evidence is now clear that Nixon created the Watergate burglars out of his panic that the Democrats might possess a file on his sabotage of Vietnam peace talks in 1968. What sabotage of Vietnam peace might ask.

After a little more than two decades, on July 22, 1994, the envelope (The X Envelope) was opened and the archivists began the process of declassifying the contents. (Some documents, including what appears to be the oldest document in the file, an Aug. 3, 1968, “top secret” memo from White House national security aide Bromley Smith to Johnson, remain partially or wholly classified even today.)

Still, the dozens of declassified documents revealed a dramatic story of hardball politics played at the highest levels of government and with the highest of stakes, not only the outcome of the pivotal 1968 presidential election but the fate of a half million U.S. soldiers then sitting in the Vietnam war zone.

Relying on national security wiretaps of the South Vietnamese Embassy in Washington and surveillance of right-wing China Lobby activist Anna Chennault, Johnson concluded that Nixon’s Republican presidential campaign was colluding with South Vietnamese President Nguyen van Thieu to derail the Paris peace talks and thus deny a last-minute boost to Democratic presidential nominee, Vice President Hubert Humphrey.

At that point in the Vietnam War 30,000 U.S. soldiers had been killed. Nixon's treasonous action attempting to derail Johnson's peace efforts in 1968 to win the presidency....resulted in four more years of war and 28,000 more dead U.S. soldiers.

Read this story at the links provided.....and follow the links found at those links.....and learn the stuff they wouldn't, or couldn't, tell you when you went to school.

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