FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Who is Watergate?

by

A tiny item in yesterday’s paper jogs my memory.  The garage where, on this 42d anniversary, “Deep Throat” passed teasing information to WashPost reporter Bob Woodward is due to be demolished.  People under a certain age probably don’t know about Watergate or have only a vague textbook idea.  Or they picked it up from Pakula’s great movie “All The President’s Men” where Robt Redford plays the restrained gentile journalist Woodward and Dustin Hoffman the pushy Jewish foot-in-the-door Carl Bernstein.  The film made investigative reporting not only popular but respectable…that is until our present administration began cracking down on hardnose reporters.

I am personally responsible for the break in by five CIA employees into the Democratic Natl Hq at the Watergate office complex.  Let’s walk this back a bit.  Among Pres Nixon’s close aides in the 1970s who went into the slammer for (among other crimes) obstruction of justice were my two UCLA drinking buddies also my political enemies, Bob Haldeman and John Ehrlichman.  The “third man” at UCLA, also a drinking companion at Westwood’s Glen bar, was Alex Butterfield, another Nixon aide, who spilled the beans with his surprise disclosure that Nixon taped his criminal activities.  (Later, when I spoke to Alex, who was never prosecuted, and asked if it was all a CIA plot to dethrone the president, he just smiled at me signaling well yeah maybe but you didn’t hear it from me.)

Haldeman, Ehrlichman and I were BMOC, big men on campus, sharing the same student activities building.  The Wasp culture then was to wear a cheerful, slightly robotic Pepsodent smile even when stabbing another student in the back.  The mantra was: “It’s not personal, Clancy.”  They were ferociously anti-Red, but we didn’t let a little thing like that get in the way of fraternity-style palship.  (Bob was Beta Sig, John Kapp Sig, I a “barbarian” which is what Greek Row called non-orgs.)

One day, as the campus paper’s managing editor, I walked into the Dean of Students office where Ehrlichman was the Dean’s fraternity liason and surprised him with a magnifying class bent over photographs of student demonstrators (including me) marking in red crayon the most dangerous subversives.  “Hey John, whatcha doing?”  He just smiled blandly, “Oh, you caught me.”  Much later he confessed that identifying fellow students to the FBI and LA police “red squad” was his “ongoing counterintelligence function” whatever that means.

I visited Haldeman in prison at Lompoc and Ehrlichman in New Mexico just before he began his sentence.  They were happy to talk and talk and talk.  Just like the old days at the Glen.  Haldeman, the more buttoned up of the duo, was the most revealing.  He said that Watergate was born in old campus struggles that centered on the UCLA Daily BruinDin the grip of “Jewish liberals” like me who had it in for him over a long-forgotten fraternity scandal involving, yes!, a dead puppy dog.  (I protested to Bob that I wasn’t a liberal then but a radical but he just blinked uncomprehendingly, I was trying to fool him again, libs and rads what’s the difference?)

Follow the logic: Jews-and-liberals (same thing) control the media (campus newspaper) in their vendetta against loyal Americans.  By extension, when Nixon is in the White House and brings in the three UCLA boys, ALL media is controlled by Jewish liberals who have never forgiven Haldeman for that damn puppy dog.

So all of you who have gone to college those many long years ago and think it’s all forgotten think again: old insults from a sensitive age and era have a habit of coming back to life like Dracula and sinking in their fangs, nothing personal.

Clancy Sigal is a screenwriter and novelist. His latest book is Hemingway Lives

 

Clancy Sigal is a screenwriter and novelist. His latest book is Black Sunset

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

Weekend Edition
February 24, 2017
Friday - Sunday
Pierre M. Sprey - Franklin “Chuck” Spinney
Sleepwalking Into a Nuclear Arms Race with Russia
Ajamu Baraka
Malcolm X and Human Rights in the Time of Trumpism: Transcending the Master’s Tools
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Exxon’s End Game Theory
John Laforge
Did Obama Pave the Way for More Torture?
Mike Whitney
McMaster Takes Charge: Trump Relinquishes Control of Foreign Policy 
Paul Street
Liberal Hypocrisy, “Late-Shaming,” and Russia-Blaming in the Age of Trump
Patrick Cockburn
The Coming Decline of US and UK Power
Louisa Willcox
The Endangered Species Act: a Critical Safety Net Now Threatened by Congress and Trump
Vijay Prashad
A Foreign Policy of Cruel Populism
John Chuckman
Israel’s Terrible Problem: Two States or One?
Matthew Stevenson
The Parallax View of Donald Trump
Norman Pollack
Drumbeat of Fascism: Find, Arrest, Deport
Stan Cox
Can the Climate Survive Electoral Democracy? Maybe. Can It Survive Capitalism? No.
Ramzy Baroud
The Trump-Netanyahu Circus: Now, No One Can Save Israel from Itself
Edward Hunt
The United States of Permanent War
David Morgan
Trump and the Left: a Case of Mass Hysteria?
Pete Dolack
The Bait and Switch of Public-Private Partnerships
Mike Miller
What Kind of Movement Moment Are We In? 
Elliot Sperber
Why Resistance is Insufficient
Brian Cloughley
What are You Going to Do About Afghanistan, President Trump?
Binoy Kampmark
Warring in the Oncology Ward
Yves Engler
Remembering the Coup in Ghana
Jeremy Brecher
“Climate Kids” v. Trump: Trial of the Century Pits Trump Climate Denialism Against Right to a Climate System Capable of Sustaining Human Life”
Jonathan Taylor
Hate Trump? You Should Have Voted for Ron Paul
Franklin Lamb
Another Small Step for Syrian Refugee Children in Beirut’s “Aleppo Park”
Ron Jacobs
The Realist: Irreverence Was Their Only Sacred Cow
Andre Vltchek
Lock up England in Jail or an Insane Asylum!
Rev. William Alberts
Grandiose Marketing of Spirituality
Paul DeRienzo
Three Years Since the Kitty Litter Disaster at Waste Isolation Pilot Plant
Eric Sommer
Organize Workers Immigrant Defense Committees!
Steve Cooper
A Progressive Agenda
David Swanson
100 Years of Using War to Try to End All War
Andrew Stewart
The 4CHAN Presidency: A Media Critique of the Alt-Right
Edward Leer
Tripping USA: The Chair
Randy Shields
Tom Regan: The Life of the Animal Rights Party
Nyla Ali Khan
One Certain Effect of Instability in Kashmir is the Erosion of Freedom of Expression and Regional Integration
Rob Hager
The Only Fake News That Probably Threw the Election to Trump was not Russian 
Mike Garrity
Why Should We Pay Billionaires to Destroy Our Public Lands? 
Mark Dickman
The Prophet: Deutscher’s Trotsky
Christopher Brauchli
The Politics of the Toilet Police
Ezra Kronfeld
Joe Manchin: a Senate Republicrat to Dispute and Challenge
Clancy Sigal
The Nazis Called It a “Rafle”
Louis Proyect
Socialism Betrayed? Inside the Ukrainian Holodomor
Charles R. Larson
Review: Timothy B. Tyson’s “The Blood of Emmett Till”
David Yearsley
Founding Father of American Song
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail