June 02, 2005


An excerpt of John Dean's comments regarding W. Mark Felt, who has recently come forward as the famed informant known for 33 years only as “Deep Throat.”

“I never thought he was in the loop to have the information," John Dean, counsel in Nixon's White House and the government's top informant in the Watergate investigation, told The Associated Press. "How in the world could Felt have done it alone?"

Dean said he couldn't see how Felt, then in charge of the FBI's day-to-day operations, could have had time to rendezvous with reporters in parking garages and leave clandestine messages to arrange meetings. Perhaps FBI agents helped him, Dean suggested.
I don't much care about whether Deep Throat was only W. Mark Felt, or a composite character Woodward and Bernstein made up of several sources. As I mentioned briefly in Ace's comments last night, a 33-year old story doesn't suddenly become newsworthy simply because a character's name changed. It would hardly matter if Lee Harvey Oswald's real name turned out to be Chippy the Wonder Squirrel; the historical record remains the same, only the footnotes change.

What really matters is that a free press (with help) was able to help rein in criminal behavior at the highest levels of American government. What matters is that in this nation, reporters don't have to fear a knock at the door in the middle of the night if they publish a story the government doesn't like. What matters is that Deep Throat, Woodward, and Bernstein were able to help depose a corrupt government using the truth, the law, and the press instead of a bloody coup. That is the legacy of Watergate.

All the rest is footnotes.

Posted by Confederate Yankee at June 2, 2005 12:07 AM