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Conversation: 528-004

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Start Date: Thursday, June 24, 1971 1:10 PM

End Date: Thursday, June 24, 1971 2:45 PM

Participants:

Nixon, Richard M. (President)Haldeman, H. R. ("Bob")Butterfield, Alexander P.Ziegler, Ronald L.White House operatorEllington, Edward K. (Duke)Woods, Rose Mary

Recording Device: Oval Office

Full Tape Conversation Start Time: 01:40:49

Full Tape Conversation End Time: 02:56:53

528a.mp3

528b.mp3

NARA Description:

On June 24, 1971, President Richard M. Nixon, H. R. ("Bob") Haldeman, Alexander P. Butterfield, Ronald L. Ziegler, White House operator, Edward K. (Duke) Ellington, and Rose Mary Woods met in the Oval Office of the White House from 9:10 am to 10:45 am. The Oval Office taping system captured this recording, which is known as Conversation 528-004 of the White House Tapes.

Nixon Library Finding Aid:

Conversation No. 528-4

Date: June 24, 1971
Time: 9:10 am - 10:45 am
Location: Oval Office

The President met with H.R. (“Bob”) Haldeman.

     President’s upcoming Midwest trip
          -Hannah Milhous Nixon plaque dedication
                -Attendees
                      -Clarence E. Miller
                      -Jennings County, Indiana Congressman
                            -Political party
                      -Miller
                            -Ohio
                      -Clifford M. Hardin
                            -Agricultural character of Jennings County
          -Motorcade to Indiananalopis
                -Distance
                -Length of time
                      -Stops
          -Richard J. Daley
                                              16

                          NIXON PRESIDENTIAL MATERIALS STAFF

                                      Tape Subject Log
                                        (rev. 10/08)



                -Location of airport
                -Hardin
                -Presidential statement
                -Allocation of time

     President’s schedule
          -Upcoming meeting
                -Location                                            Conv. No. 528-4 (cont.)
                      -Oval Office
                      -Rose Garden
                -Standing and seating arrangements

     Presidential statement
          -Length


**********************************************************************

BEGIN WITHDRAWN ITEM NO. 1
[Personal Returnable]
[Duration: 37s ]


END WITHDRAWN ITEM NO. 1

**********************************************************************


     President’s Midwest trip
          -Staff
          -Presidential statement
                -Drug abuse
                -Property tax
          -Staff
                -Rose Mary Woods
                     -Health
                -Marjorie P. Acker

Alexander P. Butterfield entered at an unknown time after 9:10 am.

          -Changes
                                              17

                          NIXON PRESIDENTIAL MATERIALS STAFF

                                      Tape Subject Log
                                        (rev. 10/08)



Butterfield left at an unknown time before 9:38 am.
     Pentagon Papers
            -Columbia Broadcasting System [CBS] coverage of Daniel Ellsberg comment
                  -Charles W. Colson counterattack
            -Administration response
                  -Need for simplicity
                  -Focus on Lyndon B. Johnson and John F. Kennedy administrations
                  -Sanctity of national security documents           Conv. No. 528-4 (cont.)
                        -Declassification process
            -Terry McGuinnity visit
                  -Status
                  -Contact with Colson
            -Colson contact with Yale graduate
            -McGuinnity
                  -Haldeman’s efforts
            -Ronald L. Ziegler's briefing
                  -Focus on previous administrations
                  -Sensitivity of papers
                  -Declassification procedure
            -Administration response
                  -Ellsberg
                  -Court action
                  -Christian Science Monitor article
                  -Paul C. Warnke's comments
                        -Henry A. Kissinger

     President's schedule
          -Unveiling of portraits of President’s Zachary Taylor and James Buchanan
                 -George H. Mahon
                 -Clark MacGregor

     Pentagon Papers
          -John B. Connally's suggestion
                -Visit to Johnson
                      -Bryce N. Harlow
                      -Kissinger's visit
                            -Schedule
                      -John D. Ehrlichman's visit
          -Ehrlichman's visit to Johnson
                -Agenda
          -Kennedy's role in Vietnam
                -Connally's recollection
                                              18

                          NIXON PRESIDENTIAL MATERIALS STAFF

                                        Tape Subject Log
                                          (rev. 10/08)



                      -Assassination of Ngo Dinh Diem
                            -Kennedy
                      -Foundation
           -Revelation of information
                -Extent of coverage
                      -Newspapers
                      -Television
           -Impact on Nixon administration                         Conv. No. 528-4 (cont.)
           -Harris poll
                -Colson
                -Shift
           -Public perception
                -Complexity of information
                -Ziegler
                -Herbert G. Klein
                -Melvin R. Laird and William P. Rogers statement

     Kissinger's trip
          -Haldeman's call to Rogers


**********************************************************************

BEGIN WITHDRAWN ITEM NO. 4
[National Security]
[Duration: 52s ]


     FOREIGN AFFAIRS


END WITHDRAWN ITEM NO. 4

**********************************************************************


Ronald L. Ziegler entered at 9:38 am.

     Pentagon Papers
          -Administration response
               -Rogers and Laird involvement
               -Need to reiterate points
                            19

         NIXON PRESIDENTIAL MATERIALS STAFF

                     Tape Subject Log
                       (rev. 10/08)



      -Ellsberg
      -Previous administration
            -Figures
-Involvement of Nixon administration
-Origination of classification
      -President's legal responsibilities
            -Congress
-Rule of law                                         Conv. No. 528-4 (cont.)
-Declassification procedure
-Ziegler's previous statements
      -Preoccupation of Washington Post and New York Times reporters
-Klein’s statement on CBS News
-Ellsberg's statements
      -Walter L. Cronkite, Jr. demeanor
            -Missed questions
                   -William S. Paley
                         -Colson
-Classification of papers
-Legal responsibility of administration
-Responsibility of editors
-Compromise of classified information
      -Effects
      -Vice President Spiro T. Agnew
            -Ziegler
            -Haldeman
      -World War I illustration
            -French and German battle
      -Effect
            -Infiltration information
            -Ease of compromise
            -Ehrlichman
            -Need for examples
                   -Unknown Admiral's statement
                   -"Cops and robbers" boys
-Effect on Kennedy administration
      -Stuart Laurie article
      -David Craslow article
            -Transcript of phone call
                   -Diem
                   -Henry Cabot Lodge
      -Effect on Kennedy
      -Effect on Lodge
                                       20

                    NIXON PRESIDENTIAL MATERIALS STAFF

                               Tape Subject Log
                                 (rev. 10/08)



          -Removal of Lodge
          -History of the period
               -Fair treatment of issue
                     -Past Times stances
                           -Support for Kennedy
                           -Laos
                           -James B. (“Scotty”) Reston
                           -Harrison E. Salisbury        Conv. No. 528-4 (cont.)
                           -Neil Sheehan

Pentagon Papers
     -World War II documents
          -Tom C. Huston's role
          -Expansion of team study documents
          -Pearl Harbor material
                -Effect on Democratic Party
          -Need for leadership
                -Colson
                -Joe Torrey [sp?]
                      -Qualifications
                -Need for subject knowledge
                      -Ellsberg
                -Richard V. Allen
                      -Peter G. Peterson
          -Huston's role
          -Allen's role
     -Cuban missile crisis information
     -Bay of Pigs information
          -Longevity
     -Bombing halt information
          -Huston
          -Effect on Johnson
     -Effect on Hubert H. Humphrey
     -Effect on Edmund S. Muskie
          -Johnson
     -Effect on Edward M. (“Ted”) Kennedy
          -Public opinion
          -Birch E. Bayh, Jr.
          -J. William Fulbright
                                            21

                        NIXON PRESIDENTIAL MATERIALS STAFF

                                    Tape Subject Log
                                      (rev. 10/08)



**********************************************************************

BEGIN WITHDRAWN ITEM NO. 5
[Personal Returnable]
[Duration: 12s ]


END WITHDRAWN ITEM NO. 5                                       Conv. No. 528-4 (cont.)

**********************************************************************


        -Attack on the Kennedy name
              -Effect on Ted Kennedy
        -Examples
              -Ziegler
              -Ehrlichman
              -Klein
              -Richard A. Moore
        -Ziegler's attacks
              -Arthur O. Sulzberger
                    -Off the record comments
                          -Effect
                          -John Carroll of the Baltimore Sun
              -White House press corps
                    -View of Ellsberg
        -Los Angeles grand jury action
        -Actions of previous administrations
              -Classification
        -Administration’s legal responsibilities
        -Accuracy of papers
        -Classification of papers
              -Johnson and Kennedy administrations
        -President’s speech on Alger Hiss case
              -Pumpkin Papers
                    -Potential damage
        -Protection of security
              -Examples
                    -Klein
                    -Colson
        -Need for strong Senate action
                                             22

                          NIXON PRESIDENTIAL MATERIALS STAFF

                                     Tape Subject Log
                                       (rev. 10/08)



[The White House operator talked with Haldeman at an unknown time between 9:10 am and
10:01 am]

[Conversation No. 528-4A]

[See Conversation No. 5-154]

     Edward K. ("Duke") Ellington                                     Conv. No. 528-4 (cont.)

[The President talked with Ellington between 10:01 am and 10:02 am]

[End of telephone conversation]

     Ellington's health

     Pentagon Papers
          -Perception of average person
                -Involvement of Nixon administration
                      -Kennedy and Johnson involvement
          -Legal developments
          -Perception of the public
                -Sympathy for government
                      -President's speech on Hiss case
                            -Effect of compromised information
          -Need for Senate help
                -Robert J. Dole
                -Colson
                -John G. Tower
          -President's handling of Hiss papers
          -Fear of governmental coverup
          -Ellsberg
          -Declassification procedure
                -Overclassification
          -Effect of publication
          -Previous day's publicity
                -Post, Times
                      -Freeze
                      -Robert B. Semple, Jr.
                      -Freeze on backgrounders for the Times
                      -Semple
                      -Other Post reporters
                                               23

                            NIXON PRESIDENTIAL MATERIALS STAFF

                                     Tape Subject Log
                                       (rev. 10/08)



Ziegler left at 10:09 am.

           -Administration response
               -Allen
               -Kissinger
                     -Alexander M. Haig, Jr.
                     -President’s wishes
                                                                 Conv. No. 528-4 (cont.)
     [Unintelligible]

     White House administration
          -Meeting with economic people
               -President's preparation
               -Location
          -Economic policy meeting
               -Preparation
          -Connally meeting with Arthur F. Burns
          -Burns
               -George P. Shultz
               -Prior assignments
               -Church service attendance
               -Alexander P. Butterfield
               -Burns's wife
               -Upcoming conversation with Connally
          -Council of Economic Advisors [CEA]
               -Control
          -Administration handling of people
               -Connally’s view
               -Ehrlichman
               -Shultz
               -Need for specifics
          -Leaks
               -Ehrlichman
               -Congressional role
               -MacGregor
               -Congressional role
               -Need for accountability
                     -Post story
                           -Need to control leaks

Rose Mary Woods entered at an unknown time after 10:09 am.
                                             24

                             NIXON PRESIDENTIAL MATERIALS STAFF

                                      Tape Subject Log
                                        (rev. 10/08)



     Woods' health

     Presidential trip
          -Trip to Indiana
          -President’s experiences
          -Acker

Woods left at an unknown time before 10:45 am.                    Conv. No. 528-4 (cont.)

     White House administration
          -Leaks
               -Need for tighter accountability
                    -"Hill" compared with White House leaks
          -Economic problems
               -Public review of recommendations
                    -Burns

     Presidential statements
          -Honor America Day
                -Speech by President
                       -Teleprompter
                            -Effectiveness
                            -Rehearsal

Haldeman left at 10:45 am.