The Most Dangerous Man In America : Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers
Vietnam (the American war) was about US containment of China during the Cold War.
Do whistleblowers stop unjust wars? If Ellsberg, Snowden, Assange, Manning are any indication the answer is no. The US conducted its dirty war in Vietnam for 4 years after the Ellsberg leaked the Pentagon papers. It was not until North Vietnam took Saigon did the Americans leave Vietnam.
Snowden, Assange and Manning have been in jail, hold up in an embassy or in hiding for years and the war in Afghanistan still rages. The Iraq war continued despite Wikileakes.
Yet this documentary seems to be saying that public opinion in the US changed as a result of the revelations in Pentagon Papers that five US Presidents had lied about the Vietnam war: Truman, Eisnehower, Kennedy, Johnson and Nixon.
Yet, after the release of the Pentagon Papers, Nixon won a landslide victory in 1972 defeating George McGovern who ran on a platform for an immediate end to the war in Vietnam.
Meanwhile, in Australia, the anti-war movement didn’t stop the war in Vietnam; however it may have helped stop conscription. The body bags coming back from Vietnam were a bigger motive for Whitlam to pull out. Yet even he could not survive the wrath of the Americans and their conservative friends here in Australia.
Here is the blurb that comes with this intriguing and dramatic documentary … judge for yourself, the film is below.
1 Jan 2019
The Most Dangerous Man in America catapults us to 1971 where we find America in the grip of a familiar scenario: a dirty war based on lies. And Dr. Daniel Ellsberg, one of the nation’s leading war planners, has the documents to prove it. Armed with 7000 pages of Top Secret documents; he leaks the truth about the Vietnam War to The New York Times and risks life in prison to end the war he helped plan. It is a story that held the world in its grip, with daily headlines, the top story on the nightly news for weeks on end.
What makes a dedicated Cold Warrior throw away his high-level access, his career, his friends, and risk life in prison for a mere CHANCE at helping to end the war? The Daniel Ellsberg in the first part of the film is a brilliant, complex man wrestling with his conscience over his role in a war he sees first as a problem to be solved, then as a hopeless stalemate, finally as a crime to be stopped at any costs.
Ellsberg’s leak of the top-secret Pentagon Papers to The New York Times sets into motion an extraordinary series of events. The Nixon Administration first goes after the nation’s press, resulting in a First Amendment battle that, within two weeks, ends up in the Supreme Court. Ellsberg goes underground to avoid a nationwide FBI manhunt. When he emerges, he is hailed as a hero, accused of being a traitor, ostracized by friends, and finds himself on trial for his life.