Filmed at Amherst College
November 10, 2003
49 minutes VHS Video
Daniel Ellsberg is Americas best known government whistle-blower
for his release to the New York Times in 1971 of a top-secret Defense
Department study, known as the Pentagon Papers, which exposed a long
history of deception and deceit regarding U.S. military involvement
in the Vietnam War.
A Marine veteran, Defense Department
consultant, and Special Assistant to the Assistant Secretary of Defense
during the Johnson administration, this former government-insider
risked a possible sentence of 115 years for his action. However, the
twelve felony counts against him were dismissed in 1973 on grounds
of governmental misconduct against him, which led to the convictions
of several White House aides and figured in the impeachment proceedings
against President Richard Nixon.
Since the end of the Vietnam War,
Ellsberg has been a lecturer, writer, and activist on the dangers
of the nuclear era and unlawful U.S. military interventions. His recent
book about his government experiences, SECRETS: A MEMOIR OF
VIETNAM AND THE PENTAGON PAPERS is winner of the 2003 American
Book Award and the Pen Center USA Award for Creative Nonfiction.
In this talk, Ellsberg describes
his first-hand knowledge of Johnson administration officials lying
during the Vietnam War and contrasts this to Bush administration lies
which led up to the U.S. invasion of Iraq. Ellsberg then traces parallels
between the war in Vietnam and the current U.S. military occupation
of Iraq. He ends by emphasizing the importance of citizen activism
and the role of whistle-blowers to demand the truth from government
and reveal information kept hidden from the American public.
more information, contact: www.ellsberg.net