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tv   Nixon Presidential Library Re- Opening Ceremony  CSPAN  November 7, 2016 12:00am-12:51am EST

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objectives is lower taxation and less regulation. ex-wife the communicators monday night at 8:00 eastern on c-span2 -- >> watch the communicators. >> the richard nixon presidential library and museum only completed a major renovation. up next, the library's reopening ceremony in yorba linda, california. speakers include pete wilson and the archivist of the united states. this event is about 50 minutes. >> for today's invocation, please welcome lawrence baird, pastor of our lady of mount carmel church in newport beach. his presence today honors the late don vendetti, former chairman of the nixon foundation board. don and his lovely wife, dorothy, have been devoted friends and supporters for over
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25 years, working with president nixon and architects, john oversaw the construction of the original library. ladies and gentlemen, lawrence baird. >> almighty god, how good it is for us to come together as one as we dedicate this historic museum and library which houses a history of the years of the presidency of richard nixon. we invoke your blessing on us. volunteers and leaders of our county and state and country desire to build an america where freedom, opportunity, prosperity, and civil citing flourish. we play for the citizens and leaders of our great republic, for all the men and women who are called to serve the american people. may our leaders have the wisdom to seek your guidance and the
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courage to do your will. lord, we know that our country was founded and forged in prayer. we thank you for blessing america with great leaders, with men and women who, like president nixon, in triumph and in tragedy, sought to do what was pleasing in your site. we think back to the year 1775 when the brave members of the continental congress met in philadelphia. they knew that they didn't carry that burden alone. as franklin told that esteemed gathering, truly our first order of business is to ask the protection and guidance of almighty god. our founding fathers called for a day of fasting and prayer throughout the 13 colonies, that the people would pray for them and god would lead them to do what was best. within the year, a new nation was born, destined to lead the world in freedom, opportunity, justice, and righteousness.
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we think back to 1861, the newly elected president of a troubled nation. abraham lincoln experienced a cheerful farewell when he left his home for the nation's capital. he spoke these poignant words. my friends, i leave you with this request, pray for me. i leave now, not knowing when i may ever return. the task before me greater than that which rested on president washington. without the assistance of that being, i cannot succeed. with that assistance, i cannot fail. we ask you, lord, in this year of election, to send your holy spirit upon america and those who love her, that we may raise our hearts and voices in one refrain to you. we give you thanks for these united states of america. protect and encourage our men and women in the military who
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are sentinels of peace in the face of terrorism. give restful rest to president and mrs. nixon. god bless us, everyone, and god bless america. >> please be seated. thank you, monsignor, for that beautiful invocation. what a great day. thank you for all coming. let's begin with a round of applause for all those participating in this exciting occasion. the usc trojan marching band, for their spectacular performance. [applause] >> they joined us today to honor our beloved first lady pat nixon, who graduated in 1937.
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jeanine, thank you for that beautiful rendition of "the star-spangled banner." jenin holds the rare distinction of singing the national anthem in all 50 states. thank you to the blue eagles honor guard. [applause] >> and if things work out, that could be the flyover that has been held for weather. [applause] >> timing is everything.
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a special thank you to the commemorative air force for that magnificent flyover that was scheduled earlier as a tribute to president nixon's service in the navy. the flyover was to have two trainer aircraft that was used by the u.s. navy and a sky trooper that just over flu, otherwise known as the plane which flew missions in normandy on d-day. we have several alumni from the nixon administration today. please give them a hearty welcome. [applause] >> we are pleased to welcome over 30 federal, state, and local elected officials, joining us -- maybe the 22 is coming over now. 30 federal, state, and local elected officials representing constituencies all across southern california. thank you very much for being here. [applause]
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and we must thank all the tremendous financial support that we've had to make this richard nixon centennial legacy campaign a success. thank you. [applause] >> in may 2016, we paid tribute to three outstanding couples who spearheaded the way to making the new library in making this day possible. please join me in welcoming and thanking the ambassador. [applause] >> dr. and mrs. james cavanaugh. [applause] >> and mr. and mrs. fred malek. [applause] >> last, but certainly not least, we would like to recognize and honor our nation's veterans, who as president nixon said, serving god and country,
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having sought not glory for themselves but peace and freedom for all. as a special tribute to all those serving or who have served honorably in the armed verses, the university of southern california trojan marching band will play the armed forces medley. please stand and be recognized. take it away. ♪ [applause]
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[applause] >> thank you. very special. ladies and gentlemen, it is my honor and privilege to introduce the eldest daughter of president nixon, tricia nixon cox. [applause] >> thank you and welcome to the richard nixon library and museum. today, we celebrate the opening of the meticulously researched, historically accurate, new edition of the library. thank you so much for being here.
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you make this special day even more special and i'm so glad we can share it together. since its dedication in 1990, the library's goal has been to promote insight into the life and times of the 37th president. there are extraordinary friends here today whose vision and generosity inspired and made possible the library's new galleries and technologies that are designed to enhance every visitor's experience at the library. my mother and father would be so honored that you are promoting the legacy as an example for generations to come. my family and i are truly grateful. [applause] >> my father was born in a house
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his father built and when people visit the little house here on the grounds of the library, they can sense what a loving and hard-working family lived there a century ago. and they can envision the child, richard, who heard a train whistle in the night and dreamed of faraway places he longed to visit, and they can understand that even in america, land of freedom, opportunity, and respect for the individual, what my father said was true. it was a long way from yorba linda to the white house. [applause] >> when my father was 11 years old, his teacher asked each student in the class to write an answer to the question, what do
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you want to be or do when you grow up? my father wrote that he wanted to help the people. that spirit characterized young richard's dream and guided him through the tumultuous time in which he lived. from service in the navy, to senator, vice president, president, and elder statesman, his life was a tapestry of accomplishment to make a safer and better america and world. a journey through the library is a journey through the history of the second half of the 20th century, an era that has been described as the age of nixon. that history includes the herder committee, missions abroad for president eisenhower, promoting
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minority businesses, desegregation of schools in the south, title ix, bringing women into high positions of responsibility in government, a matter of simple justice, lowering the voting age to 18, ending the military draft, protecting the environment, restoring sacred land to native americans, orchestrating a bold journey of peace across 16,000 miles and two decades of noncommunication that became known as the week that changed the world. [applause] >> detente with the soviet union, peace with honor in vietnam, the airlift that saved israel y during the yom kippur
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war, the war on cancer and bridges to human dignity. my father's own words describe the philosophy by which he lived. he said, we must seize the moment not just for ourselves, but for others. only if this becomes a better world for others will it be a better world for us, and only when we participate in a cause greater than ourselves can we be fully true to ourselves. to me, my father will always be the idealistic leader climbing the steep mountain of the real world to reach the summit in order to help make a positive difference in the world.
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thank you, and i hope that your journey through the new nixon library will be as special as you are. [applause] >> and now, i have the honor of introducing a remarkable longtime friend of the nixon family, who service to the nation is matched by his sterling character. his integrity and courage are universally respected. as chairman of the richard nixon foundation board, he brings the most admirable leadership. no one served the nixon administration better than ron walker, and none is a more effective advocate for his legacy then he. he literally wrote the book on coordinating a president's trips and he served as the head of our great system of national parks. perhaps his greatest accomplishment was to lead the
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team that coordinated my father's historic trip to the people's republic of china. it is a privilege to know him and his fine family. please welcome the one and only ron walker. [applause] >> i see too many of my friends in these first three or four rows. to all of you, i welcome you to the president's library. i would like for you to join me in recognizing our wonderful docents who were assembled over here, and we applaud them. [applause] >> honored guests on the podium, henry, melanie, tricia,
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christopher, thank you. appreciate it so very much. none of us would be here if it weren't for the vision and leadership of one great man. it is a privilege and honor, and a great responsibility to chair the board of president nixon's foundation, and to promote the causes for which he devoted his life. that is an uncommon example of resilience, service, and dedication. that life is an example of a man who dared greatly, accomplished mightily, and never gave up. [applause] >> i'm very proud of the partnership we have forged with the national archives to tell this remarkable story. their collaboration in this
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effort has brought history alive. throughout the galleries and the interactives of the new nixon library, his yellow pads, conversations with world leaders, strategic memos to top advisers, but this opening of the new nixon library is only just the beginning of an aggressive new outreach program and initiative that the nixon foundation will launch over the next several years. the mission of this library is not only to teach the lessons of the past, but to help shape the future we are taking american history and cities to an entirely new module, to use in schools and on-site at the nixon library. we are an annual global affairs forum, set on a chock-full of
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interesting discussions with historical leaders and policymakers. we are offering new internships and scholarship programs that will begin expanding partnerships with colleges and universities, not only in this area, but around the world. we are continuing president nixon's commitment to our military by launching an initiative to help our brave men and women transition from active duty into civilian life. that's very important to me. [applause] >> president nixon once said that if leaders of one inch are to further than their predecessors, it is because they stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before. president nixon was a rare
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statesman who saw and reached far in service to his country. after touring this new nixon library, you will better understand why he was a visionary. thank you. [applause] >> it is now my responsibility to introduce the archivist of the united states of america, david. [applause] >> thank you. greetings from washington. i'm honored to be here this morning to celebrate the reopening of the newly redesigned museum at the richard nixon presidential library and museum. on january 19, 1934, franklin roosevelt signed the bill which created the national archives. in our mission is to collect, protect, and preserve the records of the united states government and make them available so the united states
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people can hold the government accountable for its actions and study the past. we're the final destination for the most important records of the country. we administer the network of presidential libraries, from herbert hoover to george w. bush. 13 presidential libraries. presidential libraries are not libraries in the usual sense. they are archives and museums bringing together documents and artifacts of a president, his administration, and his family, and presenting them to the public for study and discussion without regard for political considerations. the intent was to have the presidential libraries located throughout the countries, where scholars and schoolchildren could learn about their
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government. in dedicating his own library, franklin roosevelt captured the essence of the mission. he said, to bring the records of the past and house them in buildings where they will be preserved for the use of men and women in the future, a nation must believe in three things. it must believe in the past, it must believe in the future, it must above all believe in the capacity of its own people to learn from the past that they can gain in judgment in creating their own future. the presidential library joined the national archives in 2007 and today houses president nixon's presidential and family materials. this collection has lived up to president nixon's vision of the library as a place of discovery and rediscovery, investigation, and analysis. since 1990, more than one million visitors have experienced the life and times of the nixon years, and several thousand researchers have mind the collections. i wish to thank the library staff in yorba linda whose tireless efforts helped to
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maximize our value to the nation, improved the experience of our researchers and visitors, and allowed access to our valued holdings. and a special thanks -- [applause] >> and a special thanks to those who work directly on the new galleries. i'd also like to express my appreciation to the richard nixon foundation for their leadership in overseeing the successful campaign for this effort, and for the expertise they contribute to this unique public-private partnership. without strong partnerships with the presidential foundations, the national archives and presidential libraries would be unable to deliver the programming and experiences now being enjoyed by millions of visitors each year.
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i would also like to thank the family of president nixon, especially those with us today, and express my sincere appreciation for their support. [applause] >> lastly, i thank all of you for coming this morning and recognize the support this library receives from this wonderful community. it is deeply appreciated. on the 16th of july in 1990, standing on this very spot, when dedicating this library and museum, the president provided a preview of the new facility. he said, inside you will learn about a personal life, a political life, and the life of a great nation. he continued, i hope you will remember that while the past is interesting, it is important only in so far that it points
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the way to a better future, words as relevant today as they were then. i know all of you will enjoy these new exhibits, which offer a fresh look into the life and times of our 37th president. all of us can be proud to know that we played a role in sharing these pivotal moments in our nation's history. it's now my pleasure to introduce mr. fred malek, chairman of the richard nixon centennial legacy campaign, charged with raising $25 million to create the new nixon library and educational initiatives. the west point graduate and army ranger, fred served in the nixon and bush 41 administrations before becoming president and ceo of marriott hotels, president and ceo of northwest airlines. he is the founder of thayer lodging group which he still chairs. ladies and gentlemen, fred malek. [applause]
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>> thank you so much. probably here in southern california the archivist of the united states of america is not a household word, but let me tell you something. in our world, he's a rock star. [applause] >> david, you have been a guiding light. you have been an inspiration, a visionary. you've been fair. you've been objective. you've kept this team on track. we thank you and your colleagues for everything you did to bring this to fruition. thank you. [applause] >> to put this in perspective, to all of you in the audience
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who know, maybe some of us -- to put it in perspective, it was more than four decades ago that those of us who are alumni served in the nixon administration. in some cases, it was five decades ago, when you started serving richard nixon. we were freshfaced. we were enthusiastic. we really thought we could conquer the world. well, here we are four decades later. not so freshfaced anymore. but we're still awfully enthusiastic. and i will tell you this. we are so proud of the small part we have placed, along with our donors, in creating this magnificent new library, with new exhibits, which tell the story and the totality of the man, who was a great president. [applause]
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the opportunity to be a of this enriched our lives because it reminded us, it refreshed us on things we knew but you sort of forget as you go through life or four decades. we learned more about the open into china, about the airlift to save israel in 1953, the ending of segregation in the south, the ending of the war in vietnam, the ending of the draft, and many other accomplishments. those of us who contributed, those of us who served, we have been thanked by members of the family and by others for our contributions. i will tell you this.
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it's important for all of you to understand this. i've talked to virtually every member of our alumni group and our donors. and to a person, we feel this way. we accept your gratitude. but we feel the gratitude is reversed. we feel grateful to you, to your family, appreciation to your father and to your brother, christopher, to your grandfather, to give us this opportunity at these young ages, these responsibilities, the opportunity to serve our great nation. we feel that it has beenda an honor, beyond anything we could have ever envisioned. we feel it is our responsibility now to tell you how grateful we are to him, to richard nixon, for everything he gave us. [applause] and where furthermore, we feel a
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deep sense of honor to give something back to this great man who gave so much to us. we feel a deep sense of honor that, for whatever we do in terms of contributions, of time, of treasure, of vision, of skills pales by comparison to what he gave us. and we are so grateful to have this opportunity to, in a small way, start to repay this debt of honor to this great, great man. [applause] it is now my pleasure to introduce a great leader for our state and for our nation. he is a man who is a mayor, the
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mayor of san diego. he's been a senator. he's been a governor. the last elected republican senator in the history of the state. maybe someday we will see another one. but in every sense of the word, he has been a great leader for the state and a model for the nation, the honorable p wilson. mr. wilson: thank you, fred, for your outstanding leadership and for your kind words. and i thank all of you. i'm used a smaller crowds. however, i am mindful that there is a sun up there. if richard nixon were here today, he would say, pete, not too long. you see, he has heard me before. ladies and gentlemen, i had the honor of knowing richard nixon.
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in fact, i was given the deep honor to be a you'll just for his lovely, just remarkable pat, and for richard nixon himself. in 1962, when he decided that he would run for governor, i was a volunteer advancement for him. and we became friends forever after. now what i will tell you, you already heard, but it's the reason that we are all here today. i thank you for being part of this massive crowd. richard nixon deserves it. [applause] more important, if he were here
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today, he would say it's important that people understand the obligation that we all have to do the kinds of things that will produce a better tomorrow. he was a conservative reformer and an active one. with incredible energy and an indomitable spirit. you heard that he has said "i'm not a quitter." he proved it time and time again. when under stress, lesser men would have sadly capitulated. not he. he was part of the greatest generation. born in 1913, he survived the better depression that engulfed america in the 1930's. he worked tirelessly while going to school and worked as a student, a diligent student who earned honors as an undergraduate at whittier and
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add duke law school. the most important thing to remember is that he did feel duty. he was part of the greatest generation that served as the veterans of world war ii. for five years in the south pacific, he was the united states naval officer. then he served, as you know, to terms in the house of representatives, where he was a guardian of the country's safety, and made headlines by his unrelenting pursuit of a soviet spy, alger hiss. [applause] and as you heard from tricia, he
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was on the herder commission, studying whether or not the marshall plan was achieving its full effectiveness. then, when he ran for the senate, he was not there long before he was selected by general eisenhower, another great american hero who led us in world war ii and then let us when he was elected president. that he selected this young senator from california, richard nixon, to be his running mate. and, as it turned out, he chose very well because vice president and was one of the most active in our history. he worked closely on achieving the president's legislative programs in the congress with his former mates in the congress, in the house and senate.
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and when, in fact, a heart attack temporarily felled president eisenhower, it was he, richard nixon, as vice president, who chaired the cabinet meetings. this was a young man of obvious ability, of obvious concern for his nation, and someone who acted each today on that concern. and i said that he's a conservative reformer. he was. he brought all kinds of change. trisha did you a good capsule of them. one of the first things was that, not long in office, he and secretary kissinger literally rescued the state of israel from very likely a conflict that might have ended the life of that nation. [applause]
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some years ago, when i was on my first trip to israel, a friend, an israeli, said, who do you think the most popular american president is in israel? he said, well, i will tell you who. it's richard nixon. [applause] and, of course, he also proved that he was at one and the same time a tough, very no-nonsense negotiator, and someone willing to sit down and work with people who he didn't want as enemies, even though they were not our friends. i'm talking about the first arms control treaty with the soviet
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union, in which he made certain that american interests were protected. at the same time working with allies and enemies alike to reduce the danger of nuclear weapons. [applause] and by the time i became mayor, he was president and we shared a vision that government had grown a little top-heavy in the united states. and that we needed to restore some balance and move power new or to those at the state and local levels of leadership. you can understand how america would think that. but he did. he didn't just give it lip service.
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at a ceremony at independence hall, he signed the bill that created what he termed the new federalism. it was the general revenue sharing bill, which transferred some $80 billion of federal funds away from washington to the state and local governments. [applause] i remember being at that ceremony and was asked to say a few words. i said, mr. president, my clock is right. since you signed that, i think you owe us some interest. he said be quiet and be grateful. and finally, you heard that he felt that all americans deserve an equal opportunity. he didn't believe that we should give preferences on the basis of artificial accidents of birth. he felt that education was the lever to upward mobility. and he made certain that it was equally shared. whereby enforcing the
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desegregation of schools throughout the nation and notably within the south. and by the end of his first term, less than 8% of african-american children were attending all black schools, down from nearly 70% four years earlier. this was a man who walked the walk, not just talked the talk. ladies and gentlemen, i will simply say this. he was someone who knew the limits of human nature. he was someone who cherished the possible future for this country. he thought us the greatest
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country in the world, not simply because we were a superpower militarily, but because we were pointing the way in terms of character, in terms of moral conduct, for the rest of the world, for our allies and hopefully some we could persuade to become allies. this is a man who deserved this library. [applause] is i think what he would hope for because it is honest. it is transparent. it makes clear what he made clear in his own words. that he felt at one time he had disappointed his country and the young people whom he hoped to see enter politics. but what i will say is that took some guts as well as virtually almost everything else that he initiated.
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so this library, this museum that records the events of that spectacular life, well, i predict, continue to be valued by scholars because this was a life worth living and god knows people who preserved -- you presume to tell us what it was all about to be as dispassionate in their judgment, as was bill clinton at his funeral, as well as you are sitting here. because he had much to teach and much to give. and you know something, he never did quit. not after 60, when he lost by a razor thin margin to jack kennedy. not two years later, when he lost here in california, he didn't quit then.
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in fact, it was after that that it was pretty clear that he was going to help people get elected in the 1966 elections. and then run for president again in 1968. he didn't quit. he had an indomitable will. and he did all that you heard as president. when he did leave office, he was not quitting. he was resigning because he felt that it was clearly in the best interest of the country, a country that he had united and a country that was stronger for it. and god knows our party was. [applause] so let me thank you on his behalf. i presume to do that because i think i know -- i know he would be pleased with the product, with the video, with all of the exhibits. this is an extraordinary success from every point of view.
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but most importantly, he deserves it because it is honest and it tells exactly how a president should operate when faced with stress, making decisions for the future of his country. but enough of that, i'm sure you are about well done. thank you for being here. and now we will close with the ribbon-cutting ceremony. [applause]
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♪ [applause]
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♪ [applause] >> you're watching american on c-span3. to join the conversation, like us on face book at c-span history.
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next, stephen knott discusses the relationship between founding fathers alexander hamilton and george washington. he argues they had different personalities but collaborated on the better list agenda, often in opposition to the views of thomas jefferson and james madison. an hour.ust over >> tonight, we are delighted to have stephen knott present hamilton on washington. he is the professor of national security affairs. prior to accepting his position at the war college, not cochair of the oral history program at the miller center at the university of virginia. his books include the reagan years and alexander hamilton and


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