Richard Nixon Recorded 3,700 Hours of Tape. Luke Nichter Listened to Them All
Thursday, July 31, 2014
President Nixon's voice-activated taping system captured every word spoken in the Oval Office, Cabinet Room, other key locations in the White House, and at Camp David. Some 3,700 hours of recordings were made between 1971 and 1973, yet less than 5 percent of those conversations have ever been transcribed and published. Luke Nichter talks about the project to digitize and transcribe the tapes and what they reveal about Nixon’s time in office. The Nixon Tapes: 1971-1972 by Douglas Brinkley and Nichter is an unprecedented account of one of the most important and controversial presidencies in U.S. history, and offers a selection of scenes from the year Nixon opened relations with China, negotiated the SALT I arms agreement with the Soviet Union, and won a landslide reelection victory. All the while, the growing shadow of Watergate and Nixon's political downfall crept closer and closer.