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November 19, 1972
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STATINTL Approved For Release 2001/9~1O4 : CIA RDP80-016 By Tom Wicker The Supreme Court ruled last week that despite the Government's wire- tapping of a member of the Daniel Ellsberg defense team, the trial of Mr. Ellsberg and his friend, Anthony Russo, could continue. But it does not seem to be widely recognized that the charge's against these two men, if sus- tained, will provide the Government with far more sweeping powers of secrecy and censorship than it has ever had. In that case, John Kincaid has writ- ten in the magazine of the War Resist- ers League, "The .executive branch will have succeeded in using the judi- 'cial branch to produce a new, repres- sive information control law which the legislative branch has always refused to enact." :The little-known truth is that there is now no statute-none- which gives the President the explicit right to establish a. system of classi- fying information. The classification system ("top secret," etc.) rests in- stead on Executive orders, and those who have violated it in the past have suffered ' only administrative repri- mands or the loss of their jobs-not criminal prosecution. It is a crime, declared so by statute, to ' make public certain information dealing with codes and atomic energy; The New Iron 19 ,NOV 1372. neither Mr. Ellsberg nor Mr. Russo did that, nor are they so charged. It is r pT /j~ also a Prime under the Internal Secu- IN THE rity Act, to nand classified informa- tion to a Communist country; neither defendant did that either, nor are they charged with it. Among other things, Mr. Ellsberg and Mr. Russo are charged with conspiring .to "defraud" the Fed- eral Government of its "lawful func- tion" of withholding classified infor- mation from the public. But Congress has never by statute declared that to be a "lawful function" nor made re- leasing classified information a crime. In this case, the Government is ' con- tending that setting tip a classification system is an inherent or implied power of the executive function-which' it may be; but to prosecute Mr. Ellsberg and Mr. Russo *for a crime in violating an Executive order rather than a stat- ute, the Government also has to claim' that it has inherent or implied power to declare certain behavior criminal, when Congress has never done so. The Ellsberg-Russo indictments also charge them with ' violation of the Espionage Act. In every other case brought under that act, the Govern- ment has had to show that the de- fendants acted, as the statute requires, with intent or reason to believe that the information to be obtained is to be used tq the injury of the United States or,to the advantage of any NATION foreign nation." But the Government, despite this plain requirement, does not so charge Mr. Ellsberg' and Mr; Russo; instead,. the indictment charges them with communicating the Penta gon Papers "to persons not entitled to % receive them," a very 'different thing: The "theft" part of the indictment, moreover, charges Mr. Ellsberg with stealing, converting and communicat- ing information. and ideas-not docu- ments (the actual documents were Xeroxed, and the Government retains possession of the originals). The Ells- berg defense maintains that the Gov- ernnient has 'never been construed ny the courts or Congress to have propri- etary rights over information; it has, for instance, no right to obtain a copy- right, on the theory that no govern- ment should have the -power to, own or control information, and that a government's information is a collec- tive possession of its people. These are the remarkable issues that now must go to trial. If the Govern- ment gets a convictionon these issues,. and the conviction is sustained all the way through the Supreme Court, it will mean that making public classi- fied information will have been de- -.,clared a crime, although no statute makes it a crime. ` It will mean, fur- ther, that. the Government will not even have been required to show that such: an- act was intended to injure the country or to aid a foreign power, , -only that information was passed to _persons "not entitled" to have it. And , finally, the Government's proprietary i.`. right to control information-not just physical documents, plans, films, etc. -will have been established. Honest men may debate the wisdom and motives of Daniel Ellsberg and Anthony Russo in releasing the Pen- tagon Papers; but the implications of the ,case - the Government seeks to make against them transcend such questions. For if that case is sustained, the Government will be enabled to make it a Crime' to make public any- thing on which it chooses to place a classification stamp. Then, anyone who discloses such information-say, an Air. Force Colonel "leaking" infor- mation about a faulty weapon or a wasteful,' program-and anyone who receives it-for instance, Joseph Alsop or Rowland Evans being clued in by the C.I.A.-will. be committing a crime for which, he can be prosecuted. - - Approved For. Release 2001/03/04: CIA-RDP80-016"R0O1r35b0t~r0AO1x2imost no limit on the Government's capacity to act in'secret-which is to say its cnnaity to anuthina it h.,. - -xw Yu [ tl~s STATINTL Approved For Release 20019(3/:-RDP U.S. ISSUES REPORT TO REBUT CHARGES ON DI Hoh BRIGS Senator George McGovern as- serted that Mr. Nixon had "stooped beneath the dignity of his office" in his news- conference comments on bombing.,. Pages 2 and 10.1 The intelligence report made public today declared "Photo- graphic evidence shows con- clusively that there has been no intentional bombing of the dikes." The pictures on which the findings were based were taken on July 10 and 11, a State Department official said. Later photos were not avail- able, the official said,. because reconnaissance flights by iliefnaissance, the State Department United States Air Force were* rctfused? to show newmen any hampered by cloud conditionsjof the photographic evidence. A over the Red River Delta area, detparunent official said that it was,decided today not to issue in which the extensive, 2,700-Ithe photograph because it was mile network of dikes and damsi felt by the Administration 'hat'; is centered. (this would only provoke North The report also said that alli Vietnam to isue its own photo the dike damage occurred with-1: ra ihs in rebuttal some of in close range of "specific tar gets of military value." g which might be "fabricated." Intelligence Document Says Hits Were Unintentional and Damage Was Minor By BERNARD GWERTZMAN The New York Tancs WASHINGTON, July 28- The Administration today re- leased a Government intel- ligence" report finding that American bombing had darn- aged North Vietnam's dike sys- tem at 12 points. But the report concluded that the hits were unintentional, their impact was minor "and no major dike has been breached." The eight-page report, put to- ether largely by the Central ? Text of State Department's report is on Page 2. newsmen by the State Depart- ment to buttress the Adminis- tration's contention that North Vietnam was falsely charging the United States with bomb- ing the dikes systematically and deliberately. "Photographic- evidence shows conclusively that there has been no intentional bomb- ing of the dikes," the report said. The photographs were taken on July 10 and 11, a State Department official said. Later photos were not avail- able, the official said, because reconnaissance flights by the United States Air Force were hampered by cloud conditions over the Red River Delta area in which the extensive 2,700. mile network of dikes and dams is centered. [In the dispute between President Nixon and Secre- tary General Waldheim over bombing of dikes, the Secre- tary General called in George Bush, the United States dele- gate. Their conversation, while not described publicly, dealt with Mr. Nixon's charge that ~4r~~~~ t~sl.ll'e~ "taken n y Ianot s asser- tions. And in South Dakota, ,,of the 12 locations where 10 are d , , damage has occurre close to identified individual'; and presented on Dlonday-to targets such as petroleum stor-Il, urt Waldheim, secretary gen- age facilities, and the other two'eral of the United Nations, by are adjacent to road and river;Georg e Bush, the United States transport lines," the report said.i4clegate. Mr. Waldheim had said It said that because a large he had unofficial information number of the dikes serve aslthat the United States was the bases for roadways, thelbombing the dikes, maze they create throughout Yesterday, at his news con- the delta makes it amidst in- ference, President Nixon force- evitable that air attacks direct-(fully denied Hanoi's charges ed against transportation .tar- about a systematic bombing gets cause scattered damage to campaign against the dikes and (likes." said that Mr. \Valdheim and The report said that the bomb other well-intentioned and naive craters identified by photo-lpeopie" had been "'taken in" by of the Foreign Relations graphic reconnaissance at the Hanoi's propaganda. man 12 locations "can be repaired Mr. Nixon conceded, as have, Committete, was briefed along easily with a minimum of labor other, that there had(with other Senators by the and equipment-a crew of lesslbeen some damage to the dikes' C. I. A., a few days ago. lie said than 50 men with wheclbar-,by accidental hits. Today, North today that lie had no quarrel rows and hand. tools could re- Vietnam's radio retpeated that with the conclusion of the re- pair in a day the largest crater "Nixon has intentionally at- port. He said that the photo observed." tacked the dike network, inlevidence.he was shown seemed e "Repairs to all the dikes North Vietnam in line with all to support the view that fht: (could be completed within a his wicked and barbarous plans. dike damage was near military week," it said. Senator J. W. Fulbright, chair- targets. lease 2001/03/04 CIA-RDP8O-01601 R001 300350001-2 Although the report was based on photographer recon- This report, including the photoL raphs, prepared earlier Approved For Release 2001 I IU$,,fears.of an offensive by liberation forces in $yth,Vietnam continue to mount. Tad Szulc of tb Kew York Times reported in the Jan. 30 edition that, according to U.S. intelligence sources, political officers among liberation military units are saying that "decisive blows" must be dealt against U.S. and Saigon troops. The same sources, V presumably the CIA, also told Szulc, that the flow @f "troops down the Ho Chi Minh Trail" has been 30,0)0 higher from October to now than during the same period a year earlier. The release of this "frtformation and numerous similar reports from *eU.S. and Saigon military commands in South llietnarnreflect areal fear of a damaging offensive fn South Vietnam. At the same time, the predictions appear to be self-servinc; pretexts to justify heavy U.S. bombing. On Jan 31-Feb. 1, the U.S. ste Yd-up the bombing of North Vietnam again, care :;ng out the heaviest raids since last December. Such attacks could not possibly have a significant effect on an iii; neat offensive in South Vietnam and they may have increased in intensity, in yet another effort to force Hanoi to meet U.S. terms for a settlement There have also been heavy U.S. bombings in the demilitarized zone and South Vietnamese central highlands by U.S. B-52s and fighter-bombers, with American aircraft dropping an estimated 700-900 tons of bombs on these areas Jan. 30-31, according to an AP report. Testifying in Washington, following a recent visit to South Vietnam, Dr. E. W. Pfeifer of the University of Montana, stated that there are an estimated 23 million craters left from bombs dropped by B-52s in South Vietnam. The deep paters make land unsuitable for rice cultivation and fill up with water and provide "a perfect breeding ground for disease-bearing mosquitoes." Noting that 5.5 million acres of South Vietnamese ? forests were, destroyed by chemical defoliation until it was halted eight months ago, Pfeifer reported that the U.S: now is destroying forests by bulldozers. Five U.S. companies, he said, using 150 tractors working from dawn to dusk, destroy about 1000.acres per day. In the second- of two articles on the Mylai massacre, Seymour Hersh wrote in the New Yorker that members of Army's Americal Division destroyed documents about the incident to protect officers involved. Basing his report on transcripts ,of the Army inquiry panel headed by Lt. Gen. William R. Peers, Hersh states that the Peers commission was unable to find how the Mylai 4 files had disappeared, although 400 witnessed were questioned. Peers suspected, according to Hersh, that the implicated officers themselves were among those responsible for the disap- pearance of the records. Furthermore, Hersh wrote, "The truth was more damaging to the Army's system than Peers could imagine: that subsequent officers of the Americal Division, who had no direct involvement with Mylai 4...had destroyed evidence to protect the officers who preceded therm" Hersh also stated that at least one Saigon officer wrote a report that Americans had killed more than 400 persons in the Mylai area, and at the time American intelligence officers dismissed the report as "Vietcong propaganda." 0-01601 R001 LAOS Heavy U.S. bombing attacks are continuing, augmented by air strikes by U.S.-supplied aircraft of the Saigon air force. It was officially admitted on Feb. 1 that Saigon planes have been bombing in Laos since December. In the ground fighting, at latest reports, the siege was continuing at the former secret CIA base at Long Chieng, south of the Plain of Jars. Pathet Lao forces have repor- tedly cut the road between Vientiane and the royal capital at Luang Prabang. The area of the royal capital was also said to be under attack by liberation forces....The official revelations of CIA- activity in Laos is considered part of an ad- ministration effort to get more funds for U.S. operations in Laos. Meanwhile, the numbers of Thai mercenaries being hired by the CIA to fight in Laos is steadily rising. STATINTL Approved For Release 2001/03/04: CIA-RDP80-01601 R001300350001=2 VIASIIINGrTON POST Approved For Release 2001/:9314 4 l9 ZA-RDP80-01601 on't (OUG''felge-0 STATINTL Uon, in fact, without consulting the b. .... ~? ~- b - W lllurrest )aff writer Let me collect my thoughts and come ? group's 800 members, early this month aAmM Post of endorsed every possible variation of back to it later." With that marking AFT over news MONTH of controversy backgrounder. , time response, Bray conferred with ovee gathering rules, some Robert J. McCloskey, deputy assistant portions of Washington's standard diet White House Response secretary of state, the longest surviv- of "background" news have slipped ~HE WHITE HOUSE has held no ing chief spokesman in any Western into the foreground. True, no govern large group background briefings foreign office. McCloskey, at' 49, is went official will concede that there since the controversy erupted in mid- scarred by many information policy has been any change in nstablishon December. Presidential Press Secre-' struggles, but he has survived the i ti . patterns of ackground ng with ut aton tary Ronald L. Ziegler said then that Johnson and Nixon administrations eutior to fficiais by (me) or at the the President Nixon was quite ready to zig-zag policies on the Indochina war record to officials y nawe t thus pub- the practice if that was what the -probably the supreme test for any li record (with ility for what and has s - been press wanted. White House spokesmen spokesman-with his own credibility Moreover, othe r a t went on the record for news briefings intact. said). accountability said): of White, House and State at the President's recent round of "lit- It was decided to reply to the ques- parte t White en to inquiries a about De- tie summit" conferences and in the tion if it was pursued the next day, their news ice to mitts in 1971 year-end reports on administra- as it was. Fortunately for officialdom their nE;B by admits no innn. tion accomplishments. However, White in this instance, Under Secretary of vations. more news has been the House officials, and all others in the State Johnson is a cautious speafier more news he bhnite put o House the pub and executive branch, reserve the right to who had attached enough qualifica- `refen . the White State ahe employ background rules. Herbert G. tions to his background statements to the outwouldbreaakk of of public normally beublic the Klein, the administration's director of sustain at least an argument that new ease since than ease dis- communications, speaking to the Ar- Communist successes in Laos and puce over government information kansas Press Association, emphasized Cambodia resulted from unpi edicta practices. that backgrounders will continue to ble developments. "I don't think it The day-to-day practice for invoking be used "when we feel that it provides was possible," said spokesman Bray, the. varies, b d dhere is daily greater the public with additional needed in. "to know on Dec. 1 of the qualitative rove varies, but there now nee formation." improvements which the North Viet- govern nee and press cid At the State Department, there was namese had, in retrospect, clearly of the need to have pollicyicy declara- " in their armament, with the Lions stated on the record, by identi- an unusual departure in press practice made fiable officials who will take responsi- recently, technical in nature, but addition of 130-mm. artillery and nu- bility for what they say. The problem illustrative of both the changes tak- mattes responses to tanks. the This same reply and other inquiry left is by no means peculiar to the Nixon ing place and the reasons they are some press questioners dissatisfied. administration. This administration needed. A television network news- But others counted it a gain that the happened to land in office when the man in open press briefing, asked attempt was made to seek public ac- accumulation of challenges to the credibility of government were ex- how the department reconciles sweep- countability for official statements. traoidinarily acute, as, President Nixon ing Communist military successes in Troubled Officials acknowledged before reaching the Laos and Cambodia with what he de- JOHNSON AND MANY officials at White House. scribed as the "rather glowing" fore- the White House, State, the Penta-' It Is too early to determine if the -cast by "U. Alexis Johnson (at) a god and other news centers are sin current shift of emphasis is merely background briefing" on. Dec. 1. cerely troubled by the dispute about temporary, while the heat of contro- There was a noticeable pause in the background briefings. They hold that versy is high, or more durable. The proceedings. Spokesman Charles W. dispute is by no means resolved, either Bray, rarely at a loss for a circuitous officials -especially diplomats-will between the government and the press response, sidestepped the identifica be less communicative if they are re- qr within the sharply divided press tion breach and the question, replying: quired to speak on the public record. corps, where the argument is even "I do recall that a senior official of This is a central issue in the dispute, more intents . The officers of the t %9/04a' te eld a back- and an unmeasured but large propaj?? White Housed n6QXsRe4ea C")A-RDP80-01601 R001300350001-2 WA HINGu.,i POS1' Approved For Release 20d1M104?~6A-RDP80-01601 R Jfargaiis Childs Furor on Seeree wes Lot to Nixoii .crecy in government and the revelation of leaked docu- ments owes a lot to the man in the White House. Except for carefully stage-managed television performances, communication with the media has fallen close to zero. In 1971 the President had -nine press conferences, and four of these were of the im- promptu kind held on short notice where only the White House regulars are present. This is a measure of his dis- trust of a direct confronta- tion with reporters. He shies away from even the kind of East Room press conference that has increasingly be- come a television spectacu- 'Iar with the seats in the front row allotted to those who are familiars. Suppose in the immediate issue of the India-Pakistan dispute that Mr. Nixon had held a press conference in the first week in December. He would have been asked about his attitude on the de- veloping war. . How much better to have given 'a forthright answer deploring what the White House considered India's ag- gression than to have this leak out of a secret session of policy makers. The Presi- dent could not in any event escape responsibility for the, decision. In 1970 the President had four full-scale press confer- lences and one impromptu. the, total for 1969 was eight. Television interviews with network reporters have filled some gaps. But they are no substitute for the give-and-take of the press conference that not so long ago was both a principal source of news and a mirror of the man in the Chief Ex- ecutive's chair. COMPARISON with the past is instructive. Mr. Nix- on's only Republican prede, cessor in recent history, Dwight D. Eisenhower, could never have been ac- Yet in his eight years in of- fice he held 193 press con- ferences. An average of 24 per year Is not bad for a President who took frequent vacations and in 1955 had a long enforced quiet wii.h a heart attack. In his nearly three years in the White House John F. Kennedy had 64 press con- ferences. In the State De- partment auditorium taking the questions as they came from every side, he devel- oped a mastery of challenge and response. The complaint was that his was a virtuoso performance with the em? phasis on theatrics. Yet it often produced important, news with a Kennedy flair, as when the President In a somber mood, the negotia- tions over the nuclear test ban treaty faltering, spoke of the genie escaping fo--- ever from the bottle of con- trol. In his six years Lyndon B. Johnson held 126 press con- ferences. Many on the im- promptu order. Suffering from comparison with the Kennedy virtuosity, he var- ied the rate from year to year. THE VALUE of the White House press conference as an institution was exagger- ated in the past. Comps,-.son with the question hour in the British House of Com- mons will not stand up. In the Commons, the Prima . Minister and his cabinet are subjected to a sharp give- and-take on the issues of the day. At the White House press conference a reporter can rarely have a followup ques- tion when the first response has been evasive. Even in the era of FOR, who tried to keep t) a twice-a-week conference: schedule, the followup was rare. Once a repo; ter pressed for a further re- sponse, the President re- plied with "Remember, no gross examination." But for all its limitations,. the press conference has ~u,a.u Luc91, ,. 1,0 and se PIP O~/t@ i e9r on a ton wit t a f?L Pressed hard by his inquisi- ecutive increasingly hedged tors, hls flushed face would ,,,;.w ,, STATINTL power and secrecy. 'AS a' rare television show, a limit of half an hour in itself a se- rious handicap, it no longer has much value as a forum shedding eplightenment on the ways of government. One handicap is the size of the press corps ,accredited to the White House. Some means can surely be found, however, to divide the corps at separate conferences. Both for public confidence and for the conscience of the President the right of public inquiry is a vital part. of a democratic system. 'v 1972. United Feature Syndicate, Inc. CIA-RDP80-01601 R001300350001; 2 STATINTL Approved For Release 2081 J0;A( 419 f21A-RDP80-0160 Voice of the Voiceless Ile is the most widely read syndicated columnist in America (600 newspapers), and perhaps the most controversial. To his countless critics, Jack Northman An- derson is a reckless, irresponsible and frequently inaccurate scandalmonger. To his equally numerous admirers, the Wash- ington-based columnist is a muckraker in the noblest sense of the word, a relentless exposer of sham and Hanky panky in high places. Iloth friend and foe, however, concede that Anderson has the largest and most varied network of sources in all of newspaperdom. And as his headline- grabbing leakage of classified White House documents on the India-Pakistan war once again made plain, some of those informants work within the top echelons of the U.S. Government. What made the whole af- fair so puzzling was that An- derson, who usually camou- flages such sources with the utmost care, was dropping hints to their identity in this case with almost gleeful aban- don. "If the sources were identified," he told one re- porter, "it would embarrass the Administration more than it would me. It would make a very funny story." At "another point, Anderson revealed that the flow of top-secret docu- ments to him was still contin- uing, and then added: "My sources-and they are plural -are some of [the Adminis- tration's] own boys. And if they want to finger them, they're going to end up with bubble gun all over their faces." Some suspected that An- derson's puckish warning was simply an attempt to protect himself from nrosecution-a paign against the backgrounder [follow- ing page]. Perhaps it didn't notice the Anderson bombs in their usual spot on the comics page." But Post managing edi- tor Howard Simons denied all this. "The one or two times we have put a columnist out on the front page, we have been burned," he said: "We just figure people will read the columns." The Post, however, quickly recouped by carrying the full texts of the three secret documents that Anderson leaked to the paper exclusively after Presiden- tial adviser Henry Kissinger complained that he had been quoted out of context. The Post also distributed the texts over its joint news wire with The Los Angeles Times, enabling them to appear in The Anderson: `I work at staying in trouble' that Sen. Edward Kennedy at first per- suaded his cousin Joseph Gargan to take the rap for the Chappaquiddick tragedy and who once had an aide dig for news in J. Edgar Hoover's garbage can. "I work at staying in trouble," Anderson explains. Fairer: Despite his heavy-handed tac- tics, Anderson is generally regarded by Washington newsmen as more fair-mind- ed than Drew Pearson was. "Jack has cul- tivated a broader range of sources," says Bill Lambert, former head of Life's in- vestigative reporting team. "The column now has more reliability." Anderson himself likes to think of his column as "the voice of the voiceless American-the common man." And that conception may explain why he has ada- mantly resisted attempts by The Wash- ington Post to move his column from the comics page to a more prominent and prestigious niche. "We think," says one of Anderson's staffers, "that we are on the best-read page in the newspaper." step that the White House seems highly Boston Globe, San Francisco Chronicle, reluctant -to take anyway. Indeed, last Chicago Sun-Times and New York Post. week the justice Department appeared (The New York Times and some 30 oth- to be far more intent on shutting oft the or news organizations later obtained the sources of the Anderson leaks than on texts from Anderson's office.) launching legal measures against the col- The actual contents of the documents umnist himself. In light of the govern- were not surprising to readers who had ment's tough stance in the Pentagon followed U.S. policy in India and Pakis- papers case, this milder approach tan. But by baring the very words and prompted New York Times foreign editor moods of key Presidential advisers, An- James Greenfield to remark: "It would derson scored a major coup. For the be very strange if they prosecuted Dan- burly, 49-year-old Mormon who inherited iel Ellsberg and not Anderson." the column from his senior partner Drew Spot: Possibly to buttress its own legal Pearson when Pearson died in 1969, the position in the Ellsberg affair, the Times revelations capped a long series of block- began front-paging the Anderson scoop busters that have both infuriated and well before any other paper-including titillated the Washington Establishment. The Washington Post which, unlike the It was Anderson who researched and 1T14erry=G oaI~ouir c'o nI mine~ver'y dayR ~e to o r i 00afc i tOt ~sO'P1601 R001300350001-2 suspect,"':'said one newsman, "that the Thomas Dodd, the late Connecticut sen- Prast was too engrossed with its own cam- ator. It was also Anderson who charged WASHINGTON STlIR Approved For Release 20H04>3IA-RDP80-0 CARL T. ROWAN Arad arson Disclosures Serve Publ ac Interest A small but loud minority of -my press colleagues, and a number of government offici- als, are trying to portray col- umnist Jack Anderson as some ,kind of traitor for making pub- lic those secret documents about the India-Pakistan war. James J. Kilpatrick thinks 'Anderson should have put "good citizenship" first and run to the Justice Department with the documents, helping them to discover and punish' .the "disloyal" official who made the security breach. What to think or do about the official who leaked the doc- uments is a separate issue. But there ought to be no doubt in the public's mind that An- derson was a model of good citizenship when he remained faithful to his commitment to tell the public the truth. . It would have been easy enough to curry favor with the administration by suppressing the documents, but Anderson .knows that the single greatest justification for a free press is that it serves to keep govern- ment honest. It is a..serious enough situa- tion that no responsible news- man should. be shackled by a .4 'secret" stamp when be sees =clear-cut evidence that the government is lying, and using the press to mislead the pub- lic. ,- , Why shouldn't the American American people; and public public know that while Presi- support quickly withers unless dent Nixon's national security it is based on wide under- adviser, Henry Kissinger, was standing of the truth. using a press "backgrounder" After the damage was done, to flamfloozle the public into/ administration spokesman be- believing the United States gan to tell the press some of fact was acting with petulant childishness? There was Kissinger secretly telling top government offici- als the President wanted them to adopt a "pro-Pakistan tilt," that he wanted them to be "cool" to the Indians, and that Mr. Nixon didn't want the In- dian ambassador treated at too high a level. Why shouldn't the Ameri- can people know that Kenneth Keating, Nixon's envoy to In- dia, had fired home a cable protesting that USIA reports and other versions of the con- flict (based on Kissinger's briefing) did not square with the facts and could create a credibility poblem? As Lyndon B. Johnson dis- covered about Vietnam, no foreign policy succeeds for long without the support of the the things that should have been revealed when our gov- ernment knew that war was imminent. They told how Nix- on had made four important offers to the Indian Prime Minister, Mrs. Indira Gandhi, when she was here. These included a unilateral troop pullback by Pakistan if India would agree to recipro- cate later, another $250 mil- lion from the U.S. to help care for the 10 million refugees in India and talks between the government in West Pakistan and the Awami League in the East. "The President felt that he had given the lady an alterna- tive to war, and she choose war-that is why he was so peeved," one official told me. Wouldn't it have been more statesmanlike, more enlight- ening to the American people, to confront the Indians pub- STATINTL licly with Nixon's "alterna. tives to war"-instead of issu- ing silly behind-the-scenes or-. ders to be rude to the Indian ambassador?. As it is, even the Anderson documents give us no clear picture as to why Nixon was so fervently pro-Pakistan and anti-India. The town remains full of whispers that it was because Mrs. Gandhi cut him up ver- bally in her toast at the White House dinner. Asian diplomats talk about the Indians snub- bing Nixon and the Pakistanis treating him royally when he went to Asia after losing to Kennedy in 1960. Some specu- late that siding with Pakistan, and thus with Red China, -was part of some grand strategy, the President had in connec- tion with his trip to China. We may know. But thanks to Andqrson we are a lot closer to the truth about foreign poli- cy bunglings which this gov- ernment, like governments be- fore it, was all to eager to cloak in secrecy labels. Approved For Release 2001/03/04: CIA-RDP80-01601 R001300350001-2 ST.ATINTL Approved For Released" 6JA? &,Z ?'I3-@.P80-0160 1.0 N 11Z By Richard L. Strout ? Staff correspondent of The Christian Science Monitor Washington It is the light shed on the operation of the Nixon administration rather than any specific new revelations that is the arresting part to many of the so-called Anderson papers being revealed by syndicated columnist--Jack Anderson from hush-hush official documents on the India-Pakistan crisis. The whole issue of the so-called "Metternich role" of Dr. Henry A. Kissinger as adviser to the President on international affairs is brought up, by the ex- posure of how it works in practice. Dr. Kissinger is not secretary of state, and yet, in this instance, he was apparently calling the shots and delivering orders. from the absent President to the prestigious top-level 1: ;ie House Security Action Group (WSAG), including the head of CIA and chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. J "It goes without saying," according to Washington Mr. Nutter, "that the entire press is slant- Dr. Kissinger is liked by the press, and his ing this war to place the entire blame on frequent backgrounders are often illuminat- the Pakistanis and to show that they at- Uing and helpful, yet his credibility is now tacked India." raised. In two backgrounders, for example, , Mr. Nutter's comment was recorded' in a he said the administration had no advance "memorandum for record" by James 'H. inkling of the Indian attack on Pakistan, yet Noyes, a deputy to Mr. Nutter, that was a confidential cable to Secretary of State leaked to the columnist by sources unknown. William P. Rogers from U.S. Ambassador It purportedly quotes participants directly Kenneth B. Keating (Nov. 12) at New Delhi instead r of in paraphrase as in an earlier reportedly said that war was "imminent." pp`iap A' wave of sympathy for Mr. Nixon is published memorandum prepared by Navy expected on the grounds that nobody can Capt. Howard N. Kay. And like the Johnson carry. on foreign policy easily or perhaps administration. the Nixon administration successfully when confidential talks at high- has had trouble with the press. In this in. est levels are disclosed. stance administration officials at WSAG dis- Almost everybody here seems to agree cussed procedures for "tilting" government with this. response against the Indian Government. in On the other hand there is a feeling that a situation where the administration placed official secrecy has been carried to pre- blame on New Delhi. posterous lengths. This is another aspect Nixon anger discussed - of the instability in the situation, like Dr. Kissinger's own role, that the Anderson The WSAG was told of Mr. Nixon's anger papers affect. There are other aspects of at the version of affairs that was coming the administration position. . out from press backgrounders at the State For-example, advisers to the President Department. simply shrug their shoulders ironically over the alleged "slanting" of the American press "Both Yahya [West Pakistan President in ways counter to administration foreign Yahya Khan] and Mrs. Gandhi are making policy in this instance, condsering it inevita- billicose statements. If we refer to Mrs. ble. Gandhi's in our statement, do we not also Another theme is how President Nixon have to refer to Yahya's?" asked Samuel De asserts authority over the prestigious Palma, assistant secretary of state for inter- WSAG through Dr. Kissinger. But in the national organizations. Pakistan crisis WSAG did not meet directly Dr. Kissinger replied, "The President at critical moments with the President who says either the bureaucracy should put out sent his directions through Dr. Kissinger. the right statement on this or the White House will do it. Can the UN object to FBI Continues search Yahya's statements about defending his Meanwhile the FBI continues the search country?" Mr. De Palma replied, "We will for the source of the leak, and two house have difficulty in the. UN because most of committees are starting their own investiga- the countries who might .go with us do not tion. want to tilt toward Pakistan to the extent J G. Warren Nutter, Assistant Secretary of we do." Defense for Security Affairs, in an exchange "Whoever is doing the backgrounding at with Dr. Kissinger during ? a White House State," Dr. Kissinger reportedly answered. WSAG session Dec. 4, gave the administra- "is invoking the President's wrath. Please ti 's the pr~s s. try to follow the President's wishes." approved For Release 2001/03/04: CIA-RDP80-01601 R001300350001-2 STATINTL Z hu STATINTL continued to prepare for the 1 fice In the White House. The presidential pilgrimages to Pe- final decisions, to be sure, king and Moscow, He not only have been made by the Presi- handled the arrangements but 1 dent. But Kissinger has guided plotted the big-power chess the President's thinking and that the President will play I directed the Implementations with our two chief adver- of his policies. _ saries. ? More than anyone else, Kissinger served as ring mas- ter for the three-ring Paris ? The State Department, with,, its worldwide foreign service- network, has been relegated largely to a messenger service. peace talks, Vienna SALT and Kissinger accepts briefing Brussels NATO conference' papers from the State Depart-, that were going on simultane-I ment, and the department's ously behind closed doors. Ile! specialists participate in called the signals from the i White House strategy sessions.' White House. But the final formulation of He also kept close watch policy is handled by Kissinger. through horn-rimmed glasses In preparation for the Presi- upon such far-flung trouble dent's Peking visit, for exar.~- spots as Cuba, Chile and ple, veteran strategists at the Korea. lie monitored the dip- State Department submitted lomatic cables, intelligence' briefing papers but weren't in- digests . and situation reports vited to join the advance party that poured into Washington! now in Peking. This mission is example, that persuaded Presi John Connally. Kissinger was; from around the globe. His in. completely controlled by Kis 1 ASIIINGT.ON POST Approved For Release 2001A3164 IRA-RDP80-01601 The Washington Merry-Go-]{onnd Nixon's 0 By Jack Anderson e Man Stdie"'De' Ambassador George 'Bush probed and pressed in the backrooms of the United Na- gar, the foreign policy wizard, ! 'tions for a diplomatic solution Is simply over his head in pa-! I while Egypt and Syria de- perwork. He Is trying to serve Presi- dent Nixon as a one-man State ployed their forces for a mili- tary showdown. To keep a mil- itary balance, Kissinger urged Department. But the paper-I the shipment of Phantom jets work is too voluminous, the! to Israel. problems too overwhelming even fort - the: brilliant Kissin- ger to master. Still he tries to manage every foreign crisis, to absorb every new detail, to advise the President on every develop- ment. During the three hectic weeks before Christmas. the Calling Kissinger ? He became deeply in- volved in preparing the new international monetary agree- ment. President Nixon's uni- lateral economic moves last August caused a diplomatic backfire around the world Ile . secret. White House Papers! did not consult with America's show Kissinger had his fingers! trading partners. He offered In the following pies: no explanation to the Interna- ? He directed the ton-level; tional Monetary Fund. He ig- I strategy sessions on the Indi- I nored the diplomatic niceties. an-Pakistani conflict. He sub-! In all this, he was advised mitted the option papers, for chiefly by Treasury Secretary task force into the Bay of Ben-i the international disorder. gal, ? He stage-managed the ? Kissinger compiled a grim! President's blobe-trotting to situation report showing a placate ruffled allied leaders. dangerous intensification of,; Not only were the briefing North Vietnamese military papers prepared under Kissin- pressure in Laos, Cambodia ger's supervision, but he trav- and South Vietnam. Not only Bled with the President. Kis- were our Laotian allies in pos-singer seemed to be every- sible peril, but the govern- where-conferring with Brit- ment we support in Cambodia ish Prime Minister Edward appeared to be in danger of Heath. breakfasting with collapse. He recommended air French President Georges strikes against North Vietnam. j Pompidou and, after .hours, ? He orchestrated the deli.! hitting the night spots with cate Us. strategy in the Mid- beautiful young ladies. dle East. Under his direction,, ? All the while Kissinger dations, largely, guided the President in setting policy ev- erywhere. Paper Clip singer.. Yet Kissinger has been able to operate in- almost total se- crecy. Congress has sought in. vain to find out- what lie's' doing, but he has refused to: Day after day, Kissinger; testify as Secretary of State processed dozens of option I Bill Rogers is required to do., papers, security, memoranda, The State Department, which and briefing papers for the is charged with the conduct of President. Kissinger also ) foreig n affairs, can't even worked on several major na keep up with Kissinger. tional security studies on such! Not until we I hold of the subjects as "Prisoners of War", Ivhite House Papers has the, and "Laos Peace Initiatives." I public been given a glimpse In short, Henry Kissinger I into has been running U.S. foreign tions. Kissin ger's secret opera-; policy out. of his basement of- glan -, A Sell=McClure Syndicate Approved For Release 2001/03/04: CIA-RDP80-01601 R001300350001-2 NEW YORK TIMES Approved For Release e%h19?f24 : CIA-RDP80-01601 STATINTL gad thl , Tease, bUt don't tell'anyone 'What it or ww o wrote it. If you must tell, attribute it to'. a former. Government aide writing in a large metrapolitan daily. } By BILL MOVERS Three years ago, in one of those pert But these are not the practices that odic fits of repentance which befalls cause harm and create an unbelievin ' Following my address at the Uni- an ex-press secretary when he has and untrusting public. It is when the versity. of Maine commencement last been away from Washington too long, press becomes a transmission belt for June, a student said to me: "Mr. Moy- I confessed to misgivings about the official opinions and predictions, in- ers, you've been in both journalism practice and suggested some changes. dictments and speculation, coming And Government; that makes every- My proposals were modest. Always from a host of unidentified spokesmen thing you say doubly hard to be- identify a source by his specific agen- -when the press permits anonymous lieve." The skepticism which she cy, I suggested; this would replace officials to announce policy without expressed toward two of our major the loose anonymity of "high U. S. accountability-that the public throws institutions is widespread, one reason officials" with more accountable up its hands in confusion and disgust. being, I am convinced, the indiscrimi- terms like "a Defense Department Mr. Kissinger's sotto voce threat to pate use of backgrounders as the spokesman," "a White House source," the Soviets, which. in true Orwellian source of "hard" news stories. . or "an official of the Interior Depart- fashion had to be denied when its The backgrounder permits the press ment." Embargo the contents ' of a source was identified, is only the latest .and the Government to sleep together, group background session for at least revelation of the ease with which pub- even to procreate, without getting one hour, I went on, permitting has- lie officials have come to use the back- -married or having to accept responsi- tilt' summoned reporters time to grounder as a primary instrument of :bility for any offspring. It's the public cross-check what they have been told. policy, propaganda, and manipulation, on whose doorstep orphans of decep- A few other suggestions followed, "The interests of national security dic- tive information and misleading alle- equally sensible, of course. tate that the lie I am about to tell you gations are left, while the press and you would have thought I had pro- not be attributed to me." There are the Government roll their eyes inno Gently and exclaim: "No mea culpa!" posed abolishing the First Amend- plenty of other examples. I -know. I used to*do a little official ment, so wrathfully did the press In 1966 an official !in Saigon gave a corps rise up to proclaim the absolute ort- l d h rep e e =seducing myself. The objects of the indispensability of the backgrounder. backgrounder in which chase--members of the Washington ors to believe that certain Pentagon Perjury, naivety, and hypocrisy were press corps - were all consenting but the lesser sins of which I stood studies had forecast a long war in adults. Having been around much Vietnam-that it would take '750,000 longer than I and being more experi- condemned, perhaps accurately if troops in Vietnam to end the war in enced, they came to each tryst more somewhat excessively. For two weeks five years (at the time we had 290,000 eagerly than I had expected. As when one could travel the length of the men there). The President then told a .the noted correspondent. of a major National Press Club bar by the light news conference that Secretary McNa- network implored me, "If I can't use of my effigies, no mean distance. mara could find no evidence of any ,,what you have just told me, can I use Some of the arguments in support such studies having been made. Later, what you haven't just told me?" As- of the backgrounder I appreciate. As sources identified only as "U. S. offi- what ; the classic posture of the Jules Frandsen, veteran head of the cials" said no such studies had been incorruptible but ingenuous press sec- Washington bureau of United Press made, except perhaps as one man's International, wrote: "A lot of skul- retary - eyebrow arched casually, opinion. The source of the original -condescendingly, in the manner of duggery in Government and in Con- backgrounder turned out to be no less Clark Gable, and a smile like Whis- gress would never come to light if an authority than the Commandant of Per's Mother-I merely looked him in everything had to be attributed." the Marine Corps, Gen. Wallace M. the eye and he was had. That night True, but I am not protesting this Greene. Whom was the public to be- .his gravelly voice carried to millions form of backgrounding. A single re- lieve: the "high official" in Saigon or :of homes across the nation the word porter digging for a more detailed ""U. S. officials" in Washington? There .'we wanted out in the first place but story can usually check with other had been such studies, but the Gov- were unwilling to announce explicitly. sources the information he gets pri- ernment, by manipulating the press, Fvej.q major newspaper picked up vately from one official, unless he is obscured the fact. the story the next day, quoting the lazy or on the take. And the good In 1967 Gen. William C. Westmore- network reporter quoting "high Ad- reaorters,shington, of which learn to there are throw many in Washington, the U. S. commander in South away ministration officials." Never mind self-serving propaganda offered by a Vietnam, told a group of reporters in that two . months later the trial bal- disgruntled d or ambitious official. Washington that he was "deeply con- 'loon 'burst. Except for a few crusty Background sessions which are held corned" that the Cambodian port of veterans in the White -House press Sihanoukville was about to become an corps, no one knew who was respon- to provide reporters with understanding important source of arms for Vietcong sible for the story. And my accom- of complicated issues are also useful. troops in South Vietnam. Furthermore, ,plice? He was back for more. Score Explaining the President's new budget he said, the military was considering one for the official Version of Reality. or the ramifications of legislative pro contingency plans to quarantine the b most ably pgut~Gf6 Ca e~`~~rc4c~/46=4napW s' t3rTesh'er~~'bAlr1-2 the victims themselves, the reporters, be meaningless to the public. ? ? ' and then they quoted "some U. S. offi- A? W YORK TIMES Approved For Release 200403I641' lA-RDP80-01601 R White House Newsmen's Group Affirms `Backgrounder' Rules STATINTL WASHINGTON, Jan. 3 (AP) Kissinger raised the possibility) -In an implied rebuke to The that the President's pending Washington Post, the White visit to Russia might be re- House Correspondents Associa- considered. tion called upon its members The session with Mr. Kissin= today to abide by the rules of ger was a briefing in which anonymous briefings. newsmen could report what . The statement of principles they were told but were not was put out by the executive permitted to identify the source ;committee, speaking for the as- either by name or even as "a' sociation. White House official." Without mentioning The In - accordance with estab- Post, the statement said, "There lished procedure, reporters on is absolutely no question but the Presidential jet gave a de- that any news organization tailed report of the Kissinger which accepts information on briefing to the rest of the White a 'background' basis, either di- House press corps. rectly or from a report from But The Post, which did not a group of reporters . . . must have a reporter on the Presi- abide by the rules under which dential jet, identified the source the information was obtained," as Mr. Kissinger. Benjamin Bra A controversy over such lee, executive editor of The "backgrounders" erupted last Post, said the newspaper did month after Henry A. Kissin- not feel bound by the rules for _ger, President Nixon's adviserlsuch briefings because it ob- on national security affairs, tained identity of the briefer talked with reporters on the independently. Presidential jet returning from Mr. Bradlee, who contends the Azores, where Mr. Nixon that "by accepting unattributed met wit`s President Pompidour'information we are allowingi of France. ourselves to be used by the Expressing White House dig- Government," declined to com- pleasure with the Soviet role Iment on the association statel in the India-Pakistan war, Mr. ment. Approved For Release 2001/03/04: CIA-RDP80-01601 R001300350001-2 WASHINGTON POS D Approved For Release 2001/04/04cj -RDP80-0160 ouse Rex-horter t r Bckir ':By Carroll Kilpatrick 1 most world capitals," that on Washington Post Staff Writer occasions officials will speak ~ 7 The officers of the White more frankly and provide House Correspondents' Asso- more information on a 'back- ground. basis than when they elation approved a set of prin- know they are to be identified.. ciples yesterday accepting the "But the WIIICA feels- I "background" briefing as an I strongly that the government essential newsgathering de- has an obligation not to mis-I vice that should be respected. use the 'background' device in The statement said that an effort to 'use' reporters to? whenever information is ob-; the government's own advan-I tamable in no other way "it is tage and evade its responsibil- I in a reporter's professional in- ity to stand behind what it I terest to accept it on that 1 says." (background) basis, but with the understanding between re- porter and news source that the goal is to inform the pub- lic, and not to promote the in- Bradlee said he "flatly disa-i greed" that it is in the report- I er's interest to accept informa- tion on a background basis. "It is not compatible with . The officers issued the state on the backgrounder, report- of United Pressy International ment without consulting with ors become a party to a con- and Lawrence M. O'Rourke of -the association's membership spiracy with the government the Philadelphia Bulletin. of 800. -. . to deny information to the The Issue. of the "back- reader." The statement wthe agreed rs cutive ground" has been hotly de- In what was apparently a re- I and unanimously members o of the executive of e bated among Washington.l,uke to The Post for breaking committee, the association newsmen since The Washinf; the rules regarding the Kissin- said. ton Post disclosed last month uer background, the WIICA that Henry A. Kissinger, as-1 statement said: sistant to the President for na-I "There is absolutely no tional security affairs, was the question but that any news or- source of a "background" ganization which accepts in- .warning to the Soviet Union. formation on a `background' Kissinger told five "pool"' basis, either directly or from a 1reporters aboard President. report by a group of reporters, Nixon's plane that the Presi- or 'pool.' or other 'fill-in,' must dent might cancel his planned abide by the rules under I visit to the Soviet Union if the which the information was ob- i Soviets did not discourage tained." India from attacking Pakistan. Bradlee said that the issue Commenting on the state- of a pool report "is a separate ment by the officers of the problem, and we chose not to ' I correspondsnts association, Benjamin C. Bradlee, execu- tive editor of The Washington Post, said he continued to think the "background" has been "perverted from what- ever purposes it once had. We honor the last pool when it be- came independently known on the record that Kissinger gave it.,, A pool of four to six report- ers usually flies on the Presi- dent's plane as representatives think it is a deception." of the other traveling report- The statement by the asso (*I'S. elation officers said, "the goal I The pool's chief purpose is of the WIICA must be and is to report to other reportot?s on to promote the greatest possi- c,nv changes in the President's ble flow of information from schedule or to accept any an- governrnent officials in ways nouncement he might wish to that such information can be make in flight. attributed, in quotation marks, The correspondents' assoela- to the news source by name. orts l rep lion said that poo ? "however, the WIICA recog i sizes it lFprri?~~a pjA-RDP80-01601 R001300350001-2 STATINTL unders It also said that, contrary to past practice, pool reports should not be made available to the Washington press gen- erally but "only to those news- men on the particular trip or assignment on which the `pool' originates." Officers of the WIICA are John P. Sutherland of U.S. News and World Report, presi, (lent: Edgar A. Poe of the New Orleans Times-Pic;~yline, vice president; Garnett 1). I-lorner of the Washington Evening Star, secretary. The following are members of the executive committee: Ted Knap of the Scripps-flow and `;(',.;paper Alliance, James Deakin of the St Louis NEW YORK TIMES STATINTL Approved For Release 2001/032=p8MA'IDP80-016 Letters to the Editor Abuse of the Backgrounder ' To the Editor: The Nixon Administration and the Washington press corps are beginning to look foolish in the "backgrounder" controversy. While the stories add an amusing touch to the otherwise dreary news of the day, to put the argument on a high moral plane, as some have done, is ridiculous. The Administration is annoyed be- cause newsmen have blown the cover on a long-accepted Washington con- ceit. The press is angry because it is being used in an obvious deceit. If anybody should be outraged, it is the general public, which depends on the .media for straight-forward reporting. -When When it comes to morality, neither side is entitled to public plaudit. The .deception has been nurtured in mutual interest. Government officials get their party line in the news without, as has been. noted, public accountability. At -the other end of the stick, where would those columns and columns of Washington news analysis come from if these sources dried up? The solution is not hard to find, if anyone is looking for it seriously. The Times uses "News Analysis" to ? warn' the public that it is reading opinion, not news. Reporters or the desk (sometimes) insert "at a press conference" to tell the reader that the news comes on the bias rather than through the efforts of an inde- pendent reporter. There is no reason why all "back- grounder" stories could not insert a similar caveat: "This dispatch is based upon an off-the-record interview with a Government official who wants to make known his department's views on the issue." For "deep-background- ere' substitute "White House official" and "the Administration's views." Admittedly, such handout labeling would take--a great deal of mystique out of the Washington news game and disemploy a piffle of pundits. But it would be honest, and if nothing else is accomplished by removal of a ludi- crous mask, the media's image would be improved when it goes to the forum to defend the public's right to know. CHARLES B. CRISMAN New York, Dec. 21, 1971 Approved For Release 2001/03/04: CIA-RDP80-01601 R001300350001-2 ZDI'u , & P'JDL?ISHF.,R Approved For Release 20(~1Q4101471 CIA-RDP80-01601 f7b briefing code reach o ?~.u~t on -erg ha]1e; no @ By Luther A. Huston When Dr. Henry A. Kissinger the Pres- ident's national security advisor, held a background briefing with five pool report- ers aboard a plane returning from the Nixon-Pompidou conference in the Azores, he revived a controversy over the use of off-the-record conferences to leak infor- mation. The controversy has flared intermittent- ly over the years and no one in Washing- ton expects that it will never flare up again after the current press-government hassle (lies down. No solution acceptable to the press or to government officials appears to be in sight. -Whether the Kissinger briefing dis- closed information vital to the public's right to know or not, the ensuing contro- versy caused the New York Times and the Washington Post to publish statements of policy to be followed in dealing with the problem of unattributed news matter. It .'also produced a few highly seasoned com- ments by some newsmen upon the ethics of breaking faith with a news source by disclosing the identity of the source. The story that caused the fuss dealt with a remark by Kissinger that was in- terpreted as indicating that President Nixon might re-examine his proposed trip to Moscow in the light of Soviet support given to India in the war with Pakistan. Kissinger had come back to the com- partment occupied by the reporters and whatever he said was in response to ques- tions. After he left the reporters, they prepared a report of the conference which they sent to Kissinger for his approval. The portion concerning U.S.-Soviet rela- tions was marked on the pool report to "be written on our own without attribu- tion to any administration official." Ground rules broken When the plane landed, the Associated Press and United Press International filed "it is understood" stories to the effect that the President might reassess his plans for the Moscow Journey if Russia did not restrain India's military drive against Pakistan. These stories did not attribute the information to Kissinger. The Washington Post, however, said that it learned from an independent source that Kissinger was the official who had talked and attributed it to him. No Post reporter was a member of the pool. The New York Times did likewise, notify- ing the White House that it intended to do .inger, the newspapers had broken the ground rules governing off-the-record con- ferences and that the action "is unaccept- able to the White House," David J. Kraslow, Washington bureau chief of the Los Angeles Times who was a member of the press pool, charged the Post with "unprofessional, unethical, cheap journalism" in citing Kissinger as the source. Benjamin C. Bradlee, executive editor of the Post, defended his newspaper's handling of the story and maintained that the "ground rules" for such off-the- record, not-for-attribution conferences, kept information from readers that they were entitled to know. Guidelines for reporters Issuing new instructions to Post repor- ters, Bradlee said it was the newspaper's policy to insist on public accountability for the public business, and told his staff to insist "through every means available, that government news briefings be "on the record" and statements made by officials be attributable to them. If officials refuse to be quoted directly, Bradlee said, Post reporters will seek at- tribution "specific enough that no readers can reasonably be confused." In a positive application of the Post's guidelines, Stanley Karnowv, a reporter for the newspaper, walked out of the State Department's daily news briefing when Robert J. McCloskey, official spokes- man, put some information on a "back- ground" basis. Karnow had notified McCloskey that he would leave if any information was put on a not-for- attribution basis. James H. McCartney of the Knight Newspapers walked out with Karnow. The guidelines for the New York Times staff issued by A. M. Rosenthal, managing editor, left reporters more leeway than the Post in deciding whether to accept background information not attributable to the source. Rosenthal called on Times reporters and editors to be "a lot more selective" about attending official back- grounders, suggesting that such briefings be attended "only when the reporters and editors themselves believe there is an im- portant. reason beyond the source's con- venience for not making the information attributable to the person or government department involved." STATINTL Efforts of the Washington press corps to grapple with the problem produced a split between reporters who were satisfied with the status quo and those who want to pin down public officials who communicate with the press. At a meeting of the State Department Correspondents Association, several re- porters were critical of the Post's guide- lines and were fearful that State Depart- ment officials might be deterred from providing information they wished to volunteer. James Anderson, Westinghouse Broadcasting Co., president of the associ- ation, reported that department officials had told'him it would now start to restrict access to the transcript of regular briefings to those reporters who agree to abide by the ground rules. Frank Starr, Chicago Tribune, proposed a resolution calling upon the Post to abide by the generally recognized rules after it had endeavored to change the ground rule upon the particular point of information involved. Stan Carter, The New York Daily News, proposed that the resolution refer only to members and not to the Post. The meeting took no decision. Ziegler, at Key Biscayne with the Pres- ident, said that lie had discussed the situ- ation with the President. He quoted the President as saying that the practice of putting out information that cannot he attributed to any source is "a problem for the journalistic community to solve." Ziegler .said there would be no change in administration policy with regard to background briefings. He again challenged the contention of the Post that it had learned independently that Kissinger was the source of the Moscow story. He said, however, that "we have in this adminis- tration, more to do than get involved in the machinations of the Washington Post Company. He declined comment of the Post and New York Times "guidelines." Rosenthal said it was quite proper' for. reporters to seek information on a confi- dential dential basis and to protect confidentiality L. Ziegler, White House press Ronald promptly denied `n the ress of sources but when officials or politicians secretary, call reporters together "simply to float ord" that any U.S. official was suggesting trial balloons or to present an attitude or that the President was considering cancel- hem b ling his trip tqA o tediiEat 1-ReM 4.1401 0VAUDtu AW 41#o-S`'01 R001300350001-2 said that Nixon was considering a change cealment of public information to suit the in plans, only that he might. convenience of officials resulted and was NEW YORK T IME3 Approved For Release 2061 64198IA-RDP80-01601 RO briefing was placed in the published Congressional Record by Arizona Sen- ator Barry Goldwater, a Republican, who thought he was doing the White House a favor. A much more serious incident oc- curred in May, 1970. Then Mr. Kis- singer threatened at a backgrounder that the United States might have to expel the Soviet presence in Egypt if it were not withdrawn voluntarily. The Presidential adviser referred pri- marily to Soviet aircraft and missile technicians who had come to help the Egyptians in increasing numbers at that time. To expel, according to all diction- aries, means to drive out or force out- -and such an action by the United States certainly would have involved us in war in the Mideast. Yet under the rules of the back- grounder, neither Congress, which is supposed to declare war, nor the American people, who have to fight such wars, would have known im- mediately that it was Mr. Kissinger who was threatening to plunge the By WILLIAM H. LAWRENCE WASHINGTON-The Nixon Admin- istration has perfected the background news conference as both an offensive and defensive weapon, From the priv- ileged sanctuary where sources may not be named, anonymous officials have been threatening on some occa- sions and explanatory on others. President Nixon and his top aides certainly didn't invent the background- er-it is an ancient Washington propa- ganda technique utilized by both Democratic and Republican Adminis- trations and politicians. It also is a rather cowardly technique since those seeking to influence or publicize pub- lic policy are unwilling themselves to take responsibility for their words. It was used widely during the Adminis- tration of President Lyndon Johnson, but has perhaps been used even more since Mr,. Nixon took office. The current controversy over whether sources of backgrounders should be named, with or without their consent, is far more than a struggle between the press and the President. It con- cerns the public's right to know who ! , said what, particularly on issues that might mean peace or war. Henry Kissinger set off the current row with a backgrounder last week in which he threatened that President Nixon might reconsider his planned trip to Moscow next spring unless the Russians used their restraining influ- ence on India in her war on Pakistan. The Washington Post named Mr. Kis- singer as the source, and this trig- gered the controversy. This was not the first time that one of Mr. Kissinger's frequent back- grounders got him into trouble. Re- cently he anonymously blamed India for pressing the war against Pakistan despite U.S. efforts to mediate. Mr. Kissinger's cover in that instance was The Backgrou'nder for Propaganda country into a Middle Eastern war. Happily, President Nixon did not take Mr. Kissinger's advice, and the Russians did not take the Kissinger threat seriously. Nor are the Russians likely to take seriously the Kissinger threat that Mr. Nixon might recon- sider his trip to Moscow. There was a brilliant example last week of the backgrounder being used for defensive purposes. Bill Gill, a White House correspondent. for the American Broadcasting Company, was in recent controversies because Presi- dent John F. Kennedy, in 1962, had given the Pakistan Government a top- secret pledge that the United States would come to the aid of Pakistan to avert Indian aggression. Nixon Ad- ministration officials said they were fearful that Pakistan might insist we now keep the Kennedy pledge in full. All this came from an anonymous source at a time when the Nixon Administration was being criticized heavily for its pro-Pakistan stand in a losing cause. If Kennedy made such a pledge- and that remains an "if" so long as no responsible official will take re- sponsibility for making it public-his letter presumably bore a high security classification, perhaps "top secret," which would explain why we have not heard of it before. One wonders if anonymous Government officials are authorized to declassify such docu- ments and make their contents known, or whether they should now be in- dicted as some nonofficials have been on a similar charge. It would seem that, if Mr. Kennedy made such a pledge, he went far be- yond his authority to commit the na- tion to war without the consent of Congress. Surely no succeeding Ad- ministration need be bound by secret and illegal commitments. One interesting fact is that many backgrounders are given by White House officials who claim "executive privilege" and who decline to testify when summoned by Congressional committees. President Nixon recently threatened through the press secretary, Ronald Ziegler, to ban the backgrounders un- less the news media guarantee an- onymity for his briefers. My own feeling, after nearly thirty- four years in Washington, is that the politicians need the backgrounder more than the reporters do. It might be just as well if the news media did not allow faceless Democrats or Republicans to make propaganda from this privileged sanctuary. William H. Lawrence is a Washington political observer and author of the forthcoming "Six Presidents and Too Many Wars." STATINTL told by high Administration officials that the Nixon Administration had blown when theq lV0 0F&0 R *W*616 3 F-rWtA U3)b410._tfW3KDP80-01601 R001300350001-2 Tzl.o~z "? Approved For Release 2001kb/ d t-RDP80- RicI1 a'r(i Wilson than who-said-what-to-whom 111z, of er On yes to th ixon has bi . gg ' A journalistic flap over "background" information supplied by Henry A. Kissin- ger' has obscured what Presi- dent'Nixon is trying to do to recoup from some adverse in- ternational developments. The Pi esldent is sending out the ..Vprd that the United States trill not stand idly or helplessly by while the Soviet Union has its way in Asia. Dr. Kissinger as used a back- ground briefing to convey this thought by suggesting that President Nixon's visit to Mos- cow in May might be affected STATINTL But, as the commitments and