Nixon's Darkest Secrets: The Inside Story of America's Most Troubled President
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A veteran White House reporter reveals our 37th president was even more sinister and haunted than we knew.
Richard Nixon left the White House in 1974 as our most disgraced president, but the American people never knew the full extent of his demons, deceptions, paranoia, prejudices, hatreds, and chicanery.
Calling on his work in covering Nixon, scores of interviews with members of Congress, White House staffers, and others close to our nation's thirty-seventh president, and invaluable, newly declassified documents and recordings, veteran journalist Don Fulsom sheds new light on "Tricky Dick." The author's revelations include:
- That the future president sabotaged the 1968 peace talks for political gain
- By the time Nixon became president in 1969, he had linked to the mob for more than two decades and, as president, had a close connection with New Orleans boss Carlos Marcello, the most powerful Mafioso in the nation
- The president had a drinking problem and top aides referred to him as "Our Drunk"
- Nixon had a misogynist streak and was abusive toward first lady Pat Nixon
- The intimate and possibly homosexual nature of Nixon's relationship with confidante Charles "Bebe" Rebozo, a banker with mob ties
- Testimony alleging that the president had ordered the killing of White House reporter Jack Anderson
Fulsom's examination of these and other startling aspects of Nixon's personal and political dimensions paint an unflinching portrait of a leader who was once the most powerful man in the world. Nixon's Darkest Secrets provides a chilling final chapter in literature on our most troubled president.
Abplanalp. It was an obvious leak from the probers. In addition, a preliminary report by the Senate Watergate Committee found that the Hughes funds were used illegally. Chief investigator Terry Lenzner is said to believe that “Rebozo secured the replacement cash from another millionaire friend of Nixon’s, financier Robert Abplanalp, through Abplanalp’s lawyer, William Griffin. In May 1973, Lenzner believes that Rebozo and Hughes Corporation executive Richard Danner, the original source of the
Before a dinner among a group of Americans, Milton reported that a “terribly upset” Nixon had “about six martinis” and soon exhibited odd behavior: “As soon as we sat down, he started going around the table to find out what everybody thinks about the speech [Nixon made on Soviet TV]. And he’d keep interrupting the person: ‘Did you hear me say this? Did you hear me say this?’ Then he began using abusive—well, not abusive, but vulgar swear words in this mixed company … He was a strange character.”7
telethon from a Detroit studio. As airtime approached, Nixon became infuriated with TV consultant Everett Hart when Hart had declined to run a last-minute errand for the vice president. Before the aide even considered putting up his dukes, however, the short-fused Nixon let go with a haymaker to Hart’s rib cage. One of the aide’s arms was shriveled and he was recovering from major cardiac surgery. On loan to the Nixon campaign from a top Madison Avenue ad agency, Hart quit on the spot and
counter-attack.”4 Despite such boasts as “the tougher it gets, the cooler I get,” Nixon had been known to lose it publicly on a number of other occasions. He had a nasty disposition since at least the age of seven, when he struck a smaller playmate over the head with the blunt edge of a hatchet in order to steal a jar of pollywogs.5 In 1952, the vice president-elect publicly slapped a woman. The incident occurred in Long Beach, California, and involved Zita Remley, a Democrat who’d helped to
Shadow, 7. 10. Clark R. Mollenhoff, The Man Who Pardoned Nixon (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1976). 11. The estimate comes from Professor Stanley Kutler, author of The Wars of Watergate, who sued to keep the tapes from Nixon—and won; Stanley I. Kutler, The Wars of Watergate: The Last Crisis of Richard Nixon (New York: Norton, 1992). 12. Mollenhoff, Man Who Pardoned. 13. Seymour Hersh, “The Pardon” from The Price of Power, The Atlantic, August 1983,