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tv   Tonight From Washington  CSPAN  May 31, 2010 8:00pm-11:00pm EDT

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zack brown was that way. that was his first tour. he has just gotten back from a tour in afghanistan. really wonderful people give and give and give. [applause] >> here is what is ahead this memorial day. >> the united nations security council had an emergency session today about the raid on a ship near gaza. at least nine people were
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killed, and dozens were wounded. several european countries have summoned israeli ambassadors. israel voiced deep regret about the raids, at and said it was important to learn all of the facts surrounding it. prime minister benjamin netanyahu canceled his plans to meet with president barack obama tomorrow so that he can return to israel. president obama was supposed to speak at the abraham lincoln national cemetery today, but rain caused cancellation of the event. joe biden placed a wreath at arlington national cemetery.
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♪ [taps plays]
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>> vice president biden was at arlington national cemetery today at a ceremony honoring those who gave their lives in
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the nation's service. he was joined by admiral mike mullen. this is just under one hour. ♪ [national anthem plays]
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[military commands] [drumroll]
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[taps plays] ♪
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[military commands]
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♪ ♪
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[applause]
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>> ladies and gentlemen, please stand for the introduction of the vice-president, honors, introduction -- invocation, and the national anthem. command chaplain and the united states military army, the
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superintendent of the arlington national cemetery, the commanding general of the joint force headquarters, admiral michael mullen, chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, the deputy secretary of defense. ladies and gentlemen, the vice president of the united states. ♪
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>> william bell with me in prayer? -- will you about with me in the prairie? our great father -- will you bow with me in prayer? our great father, thank you for the men and women who fight for freedom, for america, for home and family. continue to bless these honorable men and women, and help all americans appreciate their suffering and their
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sacrifice, and the loss of those who were with them and are now with you. may we never forget those who fought the good fight, and whose deeds in the allies are represented by the over 300,000 markers surrounding -- deeds in all life are represented by the over 300,000 markers surrounding us today. in your name we pray, amen. >> please join the u.s. navy band in singing our national anthem. ♪ >> o per se can you patsy -- oh say can you see, i of the don's
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early light, of what so proudly wheat -- by the dawn's early light, what so proudly we hailed gleaming,light's last whose broad stripes and broad stars, through the perilous fight, or of the ramparts we waived, or so gallantly streaming. >> please be seated.
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ladies and gentlemen, admiral mullen. [applause] >> good morning. mr. vice president, members of congress, distinguished guests, veterans, families of our fallen warriors, fellow americans, every year since civil war reconstruction, americans have set aside this day to pay tribute to service and to sacrifice. no place more than arlington remind me what we owe them and their families for what they have given to us. in forests and jungles, beaches and desert, across the seas and skies, young americans have fought for each other, fought for their families, and fought for us. now, they peacefully rest in
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cemeteries, and marked battlefield graves, and the deepest oceans around the world. each plot enshrines a unique story. we remember the sacrifice, the humanity and the service each name represents. the great world war ii correspondent ernie pyle and never forgot these human stories, particularly those of the fallen could no longer tell. in the wake of the normandy invasion, he described what remained on the beach where so many gave their lives. he found hats and socks, that's -- bibles and toothbrushes, hand grenades, and snapshots of families back, staring up at him from the sand. but the most common item he found or letters, letters from home and blank writing paper waiting to become the letters in
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return. i believe each story, each letter, each item they carried sends a powerful message. it is not about how they died, but how they lived, and what they cared for. today is a different time. these are different wars. troops may carry fewer physical keepsakes, but they will always carry and cherished the love of their families, a respect of their fellow citizens, and an abiding hope for a safe return. as an army corporal in afghanistan and wrote in his final letter to his family, " know that you all are the reason i am here. to give my life for that is nothing to me." here in arlington, sentries guard the stories of hose who gave their lives, those who
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willingly sacrificed all they carried. such stories of courage, love and hope will be our continuous renewal as the grass comes through the freshly turned social of section 60. our treasured keepsakes will be the lives we celebrate every memorial day and every day of the year. [applause] >> ladies and gentlemen, the united states navy sea chanters will now perform american anthem. ♪
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all we have been given by those who came before, the freedom we enjoy, the memories that brought us to this day, what shall be our legacy we hear our children to say? let them say of me i was one who believed.
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let me know in my heart, america, america, i gave my best to you. each generation, from the plains and to distance shores, these are the deeds for which america is unknown.
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let them say of me i was one who believed, and cherished the memories i received. the amino in my heart that what i -- let me know in my heart that what i say is true. america, america, i gave my best to you. for those who think they have nothing to share, who believed in their hearts there is no one to care, let them find the
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dignity of a nation. let them say of me i was one believed. let me cherishes the memories i received. let me know in my heart that what i say is true. america, america, i gave my best to you. america, america, i gave my best to you. ♪
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[applause] >> ladies and gentlemen, the deputy secretary of defense. [applause] >> mr. vice president, admiral mullen, families and staff, distinguished guests, we gather today to honor our fallen in a sacred place. arlington cemetery stands as one of our nation's greatest symbols of the sacrifices made for our freedom and our way of life.
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we have carried our fallen heroes to these fields for 146 years. the rows of a marble headstones are a testament to how one generation defend the next, and how our nation is built upon unimaginable hero is a and sacrifice. and to have -- unimaginable heroism and sacrifice. and to how these sacrifices stretch from our forefathers to the present day. remember each memorial day is the sacrifice of those families we have lost. for every fallen hero laid to rest, there is a mother and father who will not see their child through life's milestones. for many, there is a child who
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will not have a parent to guide them. like water splashed by a stone, the splashes of war ripple outward. today, we honor not only those who made the ultimate sacrifice. we honor all of those who have shared the loss. even as we acknowledge the suffering that war has brought, we affirm the sacred commitment our nation has made to perpetuate its ideas. abraham lincoln at gettysburg ask whether a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proper day -- the proposition that all men are created equal could long endure. the answer is all around us. from the former slaves that are here to the soldiers from the civil war, to the soldiers of european immigrants who toiled in europe, to our brothers who fought and died in korea and
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vietnam, these ideals of liberty have not only endured but flourished. those that sleep in arlington arts from every race and creed. their graves are taught -- their graves are topped with everything from crosses to the star of david. to walk past a freshly dug grave is to see an important truth take root. our fallen who live here themselves reflect the more perfect union they died to defend. in arlington, like nowhere else, we can see freedom blossom and note its price. it is now my privilege to introduce our next speaker. i first want to say a note of gratitude to his wife, dr. joe
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biden, who is doing so much to help military families. [applause] -- dr. jill biden, who is doing so much to help military families. [applause] ladies and gentlemen, it is my honor to introduce a man who knows about service and sacrifice, the vice president of the united states, joe biden. [applause] >> thank you all very much. thank you for that introduction. admiral mullen, i have to say, this is the greatest honor of my public life that has ever been given to me, to have an opportunity to address all of you on memorial day on this hallowed ground.
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superintendent, thank you for your care and attention to these hallowed grounds. thank you to the old guard who stands watch over those souls who gave their lives standing watch over us. and thank you to all of the service member is responsible in representing every branch of the military, all across america, to ensure that this day all those to stand under the flag have a flag standing proudly at their headstones, worthy of their dignity. collectively, the generations of soldiers, airmen, sailors and marines that have served and sacrificed for us are the heart and soul, and i would say spine of this nation. as a nation, we pause today to remember them. they gave their lives,
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fulfilling their oath to this nation and to us, and in doing so, they imparted a responsibility on us to recognize, to respect, to honor, and to care for those who risked their lives so that we can live our lives. moments ago, i had the distinct honor and high privilege of laying a wreath at the tomb of the unknown soldier. this morning, i welcome to the white house gold start families who know all too well the price of their loved ones patriotism. -pi met the current president of the gold star mothers, who lost her son on the first night of the invasion of afghanistan, in
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october of 2001. i met a mother who played a pivotal role in the early stages of the vietnam veterans memorial. i met a goldstar sister, a gold star wife, and a cold start mother -- a gold star mother. no one should be asked to sacrifice that much. i also met a beautiful wife and widow when i attended a memorial service in fort lewis of washington state. this man served in a brigade there was hard hit in afghanistan. he left behind a wife and young daughter that he never got to me, but who i hope will grow up
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with pride in her father. each of the cold start families and bodies, in the words of john milton -- the gold star families and body, in the words of john milton -- embody, in the words of john milton, "those also serve who also stand and wait." our son has just returned from afghanistan. many of you still wait for your loved ones. many of you have a loved one who did not return. live now with the knowledge that you will one day be reunited with them through our heavenly father. to those who have lost a loved
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one in the service to our nation, i recall the famous headstone in ireland. it reads as follows, "death leaves a heartache no one can heal. love leaves a memory no one can steal." no one can steal the memory from you. i can tell you from my own personal experience, that eventually the pain and heartache you now feel will eventually, god willing, be replaced by the joyful memory of the son or daughter, husband, wife, father or mother that you loved so dearly and lost. jill and my prayer for you is that that day will come sooner rather than later, but it will come. i promise you.
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today is a day in which sarraute mixes with incredible pride. -- sorrow mixes with incredible pride. we mourn those who we have lost. we take great pride in the service they provided to the nation they created, saved and strengthened. earlier this month, stephen banco was kind enough to send my wife jill some of his speeches after we were elected. he spoke of the dedication of a purple heart memorial in buffalo, new york. he said, "most people think the battlefield -- think of the battlefield as a product of hate, fear and anger.
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when you have fought and bled and survived, you recognize that it is something entirely different. hatred would hardly be enough to make a soldier leaves a safe position to rescue a buddy. fear would never make one share the last sip of water with his dying comrade. anger would never motivate a nurse to stand tall in a bloody operating room for half a day or longer to put the life of a soldier or marine back together. only love, not only love can motivate that. only love can trigger that kind of courage. only love. love is why we are here today." we want to show our love for the
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men and women who died honoring this great country, and honor the families to share that love even more deeply. as i look over the headstones of those who gave their lives to win our independence, to save our nation, to say our union, to defend against fascism and communism, i wonder, a wonder what they would think of this nation in this world today. i wonder what they would think of this new generation of warriors. for the forces of globalization has made the world across which they must fight much smaller. as the world around us shrinks, it needs to travel halfway around the globe. it can -- it means trouble halfway around the globe can and will visit us no matter how high our walls or high -- or wide our ocean. our men and women know well the
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promise and peril of this time. has never been greater. the threats to american security are more widespread, geographically, than ever before. the threat of weapons of mass production is dangerous indeed. there is a growing gap between the rich and the poor. there are animosities in a failed states. we face radical fundamentalism. this new generation of warriors stands watch, protecting american interests against all of these new threats, and it has taken equally great sacrifice as those who have gone before them. from baghdad to kandahar, our nation has lost 4391
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servicemen and women in iraq, and over 1000 in afghanistan. they were the best of us. they were our blood. they were our treasure. the force of arms one of our independent, and throughout our history it has protected our freedom. that will not change. nor will our sacred obligations, the only obligation a government has that is truly sacred, and our sacred obligation to provide these warriors with everything they need to complete their mission and everything they need, and i might add, deserve, to make it home. [applause]
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but these new warriors are a special breed. they are warriors, but they are also bright, educated and committed, like those who have gone before. they understand that the example of our power must be matched by the power of our example. we need them to capture the totality of american strength. our strength lies in our values. that is what brought every one of the men and women to this hallowed cemetery ultimately. they gave their lives upholding our values and upholding our values made them stronger.
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the objective of our new enemies is to change what we value, change how we live our lives, change what it means to the american. it has been my honor over the last two decades to visit countries all over the world. i have been to the places our military is, and every time, i come away impressed with the grid, the results, and the patriotism of these men and women. this is the finest military the world has ever produced. period. [applause]
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if anyone ever had any doubt about that, they should have been with me three days ago, when i had the privilege and honor of addressing the graduating class of the naval academy. as part of that service, there was an award given to a young marine showing the qualities that would make him a future leader of the marine corps. the award was named for a marine named john zembeck. he was the captain of the company in 2004. he became known as "the lion of fallujah." three years ago this month, he
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was shot and killed while leading the iraqi troops he had helped train. it was his fourth tour. he had a silver star, a bronze star, two purple hearts. he was a warrior. a warrior. a warrior of whom this nation can be proud. he is in section 60, a site 8621. when he was laid to rest, his best friend read from his notebook. he wrote these words, encapsulating his philosophy. he said, "be a man of principle. fight for what you believe in. keep your word. be brave. believe in something bigger than yourself. serve your country.
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teach. mentor. give something back to society. lead from the front. concord your fears. " these words, in my view, convey the character and purpose of all of those we remember today. they live with integrity. they serve nobly. they gave everything. they fought for what they believed in, and maybe most importantly, they believe in something bigger than themselves. they believe in all of you. they believe in all of us. they believed in america. so on this day, this solemn day, let us try once again to be individuals in a nation worthy of that belief.
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may god bless you. may god protect our troops. and may he continue to bless the memory of all of those who have died, that we may live. thank you. [applause] >> ladies and gentlemen, please stand for the playing up the taps and the benediction. ♪ [taps]
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>> received the benediction. our dear god, before we leave here today, we ask once more that you, lord, bless us, our families, our comrades, our leaders and our country. keep us ever mindful of the
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princess -- of the principles of freedom, justice and equality. let us not forget those who have fought, suffered and died that our way of life may endure. bless their continuing service today, as well as their families and a grateful nation. bring us together in the future in peace. protect those serving on the field of battle at this very moment, and continue to be of strength for the families of those deployed. in your name we pray, amen. >> ladies and gentlemen, please remain in place until the vice- president has departed.
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♪ [military band plays]
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[applause] [captioning performed by national captionnng institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] >> more memorial day programming next, with the ceremony from the viet non- -- viet nam of -- vietnam veterans memorial. >> of the treaty before you is an evolution of agreements that go back to the 1970's, and particularly a series of agreements that were started in the reagan administration and then continued in that some
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form in every subsequent administration. >> watch history on the c-span library. every program since 1987 is available free online. >> other memorial day services in the nation puts the capital, included a service at the vietnam veterans memorial. -- the nation at's capital, included a service at the vietnam veterans memorial -- at the nation's capital, included + service at the vietnam veterans memorial. >> one day, when she becomes even more famous, you can say you saw her at the vietnam veterans memorial. she makes us all proud on a great day like this. memorial day. this actually began many years ago after the civil war,
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separation day, when people would decorate the graves of the soldiers. gradually, this became a memorial day for all of the nation's war casualties to receive some honor and respect. on a great day, we are here to welcome you here on behalf of the vietnam veterans memorial fund, the national park service. we are here today to remember the many thousands of troops who are today in afghanistan and iraq doing their job. let's give them all a big hand. [applause] ladies and gentlemen, please stand while the color guard of the armed forces puts the colors in place. what they do is, they have a joint service color guard.
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[military commands] ladies and gentlemen, at this time the master sergeant will sing our national anthem.
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>> ♪ say can you see, by don's early light, what so proudly we hailed at the twilight's last gleaming. whose broad stripes and bright stars, through the perilous fight, or the ramparts we watched or so gallantly streaming. and the rockets' red glare. the bombs bursting in air. gave proof through the night that our flag was still there. close a dozen that star spangled that star spangled banner yet wave. and
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the home of of the brave. [applause] >> we will be led in the pledge of allegiance by thomas treadwell, who served in the army in vietnam. . . ï
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he will leave us now in the pledge of allegiance. >>i pledge allegiance to the flag of the united states of america and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. >> please retire the colors. thank you.
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we want to give all those guys are nice hand for dressing up in those uniforms on a day like this. [applause] a little warm. you can be seated now. many years ago as a young man actually going to vietnam, my first three days i could not believe the excessive heat and humidity of vietnam. that was difficult but i know that as some of these people i talk to in iraq that have been on patrols with 80 pounds and more of equipment, with 115 degree heat. have to be in a better climate. it is time for the invocation.
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chaplin james gray has been mobilized from the u.s. army reserves into active duty and now he will give the indication. >> plays join me and praying according to your faith as i pray according to mind as we exercise our first amendment rights of the religion. will assemble at the vietnam veterans memorial to honor those who gave their precious lives during and after the vietnam war. today we add another six lawyers, lance corporal john granville, lance corporal clayton hough, jr., captain edward miles, sergeant michael morehouse, lieutenant colonel william taylor, corporal ronald vivona to those names remembered here. as we honor them, we pray you to
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get us the privileges and grave responsibilities to be in the united states of america. we thank you for your blessing to our nation's and ask you bless our assembly today. our nation continues to hill from the physical, emotional, and spiritual ones from that war. may we receive your comfort , and we will never forget those that gave their lives for your piece. in that process name that is above all the names we pray, amen and amen. >> thank you, chaplains. we've been working together for three decades to ensure that this site, one of the most visited areas in washington, d.c., continues to offer healing
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and educational experiences. we are going on a couple of preservation projects. one that you will see is the three servicemen statute. we are carefully restoring the original patina and color palette. it has been severely one of the last decade. it will remain open during their restoration. it will take us until august to do this. will will be starting probably tomorrow people dressed up like in space suits and they will be shooting the machine that will take the collar off to start a slow and laborious process to get it to look like it did when it was new. everyone will be able to see it through the windows. we prepared the sprinkler system at all with the help of the international association of
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machinists and aerospace workers. it will help to keep up the grass. if you take a look at this beautiful blue kentucky grass we have here, this took a lot of work, fertilizer, but grass takes work and it is absolutely a beautiful job and we will continue because of the help it received from the people who donate to keep this area looking good. we have 13.5 acres and at this time it is on the "any place on the mall. we're glad to compete with anyone who would like to try to do a better job. we are doing that and not talking about it. any effort to rebuild the underground education center across the street, we're working in synergy with the moral and educating people about the values held by serviceman.
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he goes back to lexington and concord which happened in 1775, as opposed to 1776. this is the militaries of values of respect, honor, duty, service, and courage. it needs to be preserved in a significant way. i am pleased to co-host the ceremonies with many dignitaries from the national park service, john pills sector, the superintendent of the national mall and memorial parks. ladies and gentlemen, john piltzecker. >> thank you. good afternoon 3 on behalf of the national park service and the staff and volunteers of the national memorial parks, it is my pleasure to welcome you to the vietnam veterans more apparent the national park contains some of the oldest
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monuments and the national park service. they promote unity and remembrance, and giving us a way to recognize those who served and those who continued to serve our nation. the more and now there's 58,267 names of men and women who died or who were named missing in action. i extend a special welcome to the families and friends of the six servicemen whose names of recently been added to the wall. we come to honor those who have served in the united states armed forces. as a more consistent four different -- different parks -- the wall behind me, the three servicemen statute, the "in memory" plight, and the vietnam veteran women's more. the three servicemen statue is undergoing restoration to restore the original patina of the statute. as he said, during this restoration period, it will be visible through the large full wing -- full length window.
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the vietnam veterans memorial fund and the national park service are partners in this product and we will continue to work together to preserve all four parts of this moral so that they may stand here symbols of the service and sacrifice of our natioo's vietnam veterans for generations -- for generations to come. we're humble stewards of this moral and we are honored to serve the public and the memory of our nation's veterans. thank you. [applause] >> i am sure everyone has had many opportunities to visit the vietnam veterans memorial. i am pleased to have a fellow veteran of that war, diane, here today. she actually served in vietnam in 1968 and 1969. light is in shaman, diane evans.
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-- ladies and gentlemen, and diane evans. >> the greatest gift we can give to those who died in service of our country or died as a result of their wounds many years later is to give their families, spouses, loved ones, and friends our comfort and are grieving, support in their work of recovery, and faith and hope in real possibilities. and yet another get is using another in learning the lessons of their untimely death to never again deny honor and compassion for churning -- our current generation of courageous military men and women. [applause] the vietnam veterans memorial
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foundation was created in 1984 in river falls, wisconsin where i was living at the time. yay, wisconsin. we have been incorporated since 1984 and we have dedicated a monument in 1993. what we do now is support and aid in their dealing, praise the memory of the impact of war on women, to find a way for the vietnam veterans to reach out, and support them in their journey of recovery. we're privileged to have one of these women today as our honored speaker. hi saw this woman on the internet. she was an air force active duty nurse and she was talking about her posttraumatic stress disorder. all shocked.
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i was stunned that an active duty working military nurse but actually talk about their emotional ones publicly where people on the internet by the millions would learn about this brave woman. i was touched by her honesty. we take care of the emotional needs in the same way we take care of the physical ones. we're very proud of this air force nurse as we are all our military women. please welcome lieutenant colonel mary carlisle. [applause] shias the chief nurse of education and training at bolling air force base. she was born and raised in ohio. she has -- received -- she received her bachelor of science
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in 1988 and a masters of science in nursing from the university of maryland-baltimore in 19993 she was promoted to second lieutenant in 1989 and has held numerous leadership positions in critical care, ambulatory surgery, and primary studies. she has done it all. she is nastily asserted that as a critical care registered nurse and a clinical care registered nurse specialist. she was in an expeditionary nursing support unit during operation enduring freedom, and for the air force theater in response of iraqi freedom in 2007. her proud family and friends reside in ohio. [applause]
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>> thank you, diane. like so many of you, i served overseas far from home. i'd deployed out to iraq in 2007, and cared for our wounded who fought so bravely and i fought to save them as their bodies lay broken amid the chaos of war. while we saw many fight for their lives and received a purple heart, we sang "amazing grace" and cried as others slipped away. i care for young man who suffered ones that would take his life. in his face, i saw all the brave warriors to fought in defense of our nation. i made sure he was not in pain and he was not alone as he took
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his last breath. he died a hero, as did all that passed before him and all those who will pass after him, and we honored him as we do all the fallen angels by saluting him on his journey home. i think about those in our war who lost their names yet to be engraved, like those great heroes on the wall behind me, once a living, breathing souls forever more allies, never forgotten. so many of them who gave the ultimate sacrifice were women, serving proudly to in the past rarely got the recognition they deserved. thankfully to tape we honor all the brave women of all the brave forces, especially the thousands of women who are vietnam veterans.
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theevietnam women's memorial touches me the most. the first time i saw it, i said, this is magnificent. to me, those women were real. i often wondered if i would never experienced what they were experiencing in that moment in time. during my deployment, i became each one of those women at different times. i was the woman kneeling, looking down, defeated, holding the helmet that will never be won again. i was the woman cradling the wounded warrior, fighting with everything i had to save his life. and i was the woman gazing skyward, wrapped in the arm of my colleagues, anticipating whatever was to come. i returned home one did, only my ones like so many of yours were invisible.
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i drifted away from reason and became absorber and distracted by what is and why. i sought solace here on the national mall where every day as memorial day, honoring the brave veterans of all our nation's wars. i once again study the faces of those brave women and this time in their eyes i saw strength and i saw a determination and i saw hope. this time they lifted me. i found the courage to see how from my wounds and my head trauma, and it is knowing that we did the best that we could and the fallen angels were not lost in vain and america's freedom still reigns. my sisters and brothers who served before me, especially the vietnam veterans, you were my inspiration in the darkest of nights so far from home.
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you are with me as i cared for when did and you kept me from spiraling into a deepening despair. i know you still suffer invisible wounds and mourn tremendous losses. police know if you do not need to suffer in silence and you are not alone. i cherish you and america embraces you. you are my heroes. but but you should proudly tell your stories, and in your honor, i hope to inspire my generation of veterans to erase the stigma of an amending they cannot do it alone and to find the courage to get the help that they need for their hidden wounds. i hope today makes a difference for all of you. thank you and god bless you. [applause]
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>> we really appreciate those inspiring words, and she will soon be deployed to a military hospital in asia -- actually in japan. she will be supervising 85 people who are helping keep our service members in good health. they are in good hands with people like that running a medical services. i just want to briefly share some appreciation to some of the great people who are here. we would like everyone from the gold star mothers and goldstar wives to stand up. we have the president of the gold star mothers here and the president of the gold star wives. [applause]
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thank you. i wanted to thank the people with sons and daughters in touch. we have their parents on more. the american legion, we want to thank them. amvets, a jewish war veterans, noncommissioned officers association, paralyzed veterans, vietnam veterans of america, and we want to thank our board members. many longtime friends are here, general george price, bill cooper, and others. there is a commercial message here. based technologies gave but the nation allowing us to film the
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ceremony and airing at lie. if everyone wants to see of later, they can see it on our web site. they're great people to give us the prisoner of war and american flags here that we all have. they give them out for the special events. and speaking of thanks, we all owe our thanks to a vietnam veteran named blaine jackson. who is doing jackson? you will remember him right away because during times square, when a terrorist attack was being attempted, duane jackson was fair, and when he saw the smoking vehicle, he immediately called the police. he is no stranger. he was there on 9/11 and saw the aircraft hit the world trade center and was very much
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affected by it. he is a graduate of boston university. a fine human being, and he will receive the patriot award from the vietnam veterans memorial fund, and we will ask admiral mullen and i to hold it as we get a tooth dwanye -- as we get it -- give it to dwayne jackson. [applause] >> good afternoon, fellow veterans, and the many friends
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of veterans. freedom is not free. freedom is not free. we have our man in women overseas today -- our men and women overseas today for our freedoms. i want to take a moment to reflect about my mother who was a wac in world war ii. [applause] fort bragg, 1941 -- although she is not with me here today, i know she is looking down and saying, thank you, dwanye, thank you america for what we hold dear and our country today. what i did that day was nothing unusual. i saw something, i said something, and fortunately i am
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here today to talk about it. [applause] we dodged a bullet that day, may 1, many people from the new york city police department and the fire department. new york has been ground zero for the last 10 or 15 years. unfortunately there -- i was there in 1993 when that raj bomb went off. i was there on 9/11 to witness that. but we have to be ever vigilant wherever we are in our country because you never know. i say to young people out there, whether you are in middle school, high school, whatever, be vigilant and aware of your surroundings, even on a small smallest of events.
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we have to keep that up front. i tell my son all the time who is a high school student that you must be aware, keep your eyes and ears open. this whole incident has actually brought our family closer together. my wife, linda, my daughter, tiffany, who could not make it here today, you just do not take things for granted anymore. you look deeper into our everyday existence as i have. i like to pay jan -- thank chant for having me here and the vietnam veterans memorial fund. i like to give you all little memento. i am in new york city street vendor at the corner of 45th and broadway. [applause] old-fashioned american capitalism at work.
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to jan, i like to present this t-shirt. if you see something, say something. [laughter] [applause] the thank you for having me. god bless america. [applause] >> when we go to new york, we have to drive by and get one of these. this is a really cool t-shirt. i am looking forward to wearing it. well, we have with us today brianna hakahane, who first picked up the violin at the age of three, she appeared on the cbs evening news, the ellen degeneres show, she has
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travelled and intercurrent -- entertained and moved people in very significant ways. some of the notes and the rhythms she is able to reach with this instrument, the violin, will really touch your soul. it is quite extraordinary. and by the way, she has reached the ripe old age of eight years old. ♪ ["star spangled banner" playing]
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["america the beautiful" playing]
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[applause]
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>> just amazing thing, the way that she hits these notes. i've never seen anything quite like it. to introduce our keynote speaker, one of the great military leaders of our time is general barry mccaffrey. he served with distinction in vietnam in several tours there. upon his retirement from active duty, he was the most decorated four-star general in the military. he is the chairman of the board of the education center at a wall. -- at the wall. we're very honored to have him
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help us spearhead the project all along with the national park service, and so we thank general mccaffrey for his leadership. and he will be introducing our keynote address. [applause] >> thank you for your own leadership and the volunteers and the very small staff, a liberal is of -- hundreds of people, including our chairman, who pulled together not just this beautiful memorial but the traveling wall, bial -- activities, coupled around the leadership. i'm very honored to introduce the keynote speaker admiral mike mullen. we are here on -- to honor 58,000 killed, over 300,000 wounded, and 3.5 million of us
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to serve, now the biggest surviving group of veteran. admiral mullen has had a long and distinguished career with the armed forces. it is now the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff. he is the senior military officer in the armed forces. he is by law the principle of pfizer and -- to the commander- in-chief and the secretary of defense. react -- three months after we got out of the west point, he participated in duty off the coast of vietnam. during the course of his career he served on six other warships, three as commanding officer. as an admiral, he commanded the u.s.s. george washington strike force and the second fleet. he served in the navy staff and also the staff of the secretary of defense. he obtained them master of
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science degree in monterey, calif., and also graduated from the advanced management program at the harvard business school. he served as vice chief of naval operations 3 he served as commander of nato joint forces and also was commander of u.s. naval forces-your during which he was a lot -- he was leading the peacekeeping operations in the baltics and its training mission in iraq. he also served as the chief of naval operations in the top uniformed leader. he is also, he and bob gates, the superb secretary of defense, are weren't -- running a war against terror globally 3 46,000 of our young men and women have been killed in action or wounded fighting in this conflict. we are very fortunate to have
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mike mullen serving the men and women of the department of defense. he is joined by his wife who has also devoted much of her time to advancing a host of samlet support initiatives. when you see admiral mullen in tv or in person, you're looking at our friend of the vietnam combat veteran. join me in welcoming admiral mullen. >> thank you, barry, for that very kind introduction. by deborah and i came over here this afternoon. we came from section 60, which is where many of those who have died in iraq and afghanistan are buried, and their families -- many of their families are there
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today. but i am also reminded when i walk through 60 how many viet nam veterans are buried there. when we come to this hallowed ground, in ways it is like coming home. i'd too have friends on wall. and i am particularly grateful for the leadership of individuals like barry mccaffrey and jan scruggs, who have put so much of their time and effort, particularly gen. asbury was pointing out to me, he has devoted his life to vietnam war, the proper recognition, and from our generation i am extremely grateful. and your efforts in ways that
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you do not know have provided a backdrop for me, because vietnam was my first war has we prosecute the war is that we are in right now. and as was not the case in vietnam in the late 1960's, when the american people turned against the military, when in fact the american people are so incredibly supportive of our military men and women now. and i think a lot of that -- [applause] and a lot of that task to do with changes and focus on what we did wrong during vietnam and what we are able to do because of those lessons, do right now. i would also like to specifically ask and cynical right -- single out all of vietnam veterans who are here and ask you to stand up.
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[applause] this gathering and this ceremony is a fitting way it for this nation in its ninth consecutive year of war to reflect on the debt that we owe those who have fallen in the defense of our nation. over 3 million americans served in vietnam. 58,000 paid the ultimate sacrifice and their names are etched here in this polished black stone. seemingly in infinite number, and never that continues to grow. today we welcome and embrace the six families who will soon read the names of their loved ones just added to the wall. has your loved ones not join their brothers and sisters, we
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hope this day helps to bring you closure and peace. throughout our nation's history, america's sons and daughters, the best we have to offer, have fought and died for the rest of us. the vietnam conflict was a light defining experience for every american who lived during that era, and it continues to impact us all, the pain, the conflict, the healing, the lessons we learned in vietnam what had a very great price. and i believe acting on them is the best tribute we can pay to honor those who died. in fact, i believe the impact of the vietnam war is also significantly by our children and by their children. and is a call to ensure that we
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act on the challenges that are still out there. during that time as the country, we were unable to celebrate -- separate politics from the people. it was my first or and i swore i would do everything i could to keep all americans, the military and the public, in touch with one of the other and i did that not having any idea that i would ever have the privilege of serving in the job in which i serve today. we must never allow america to become disconnected from her military, never. never allow all walt to stand between citizens and those who wear the cloth of our nation. that is why i believe this site, this wall, is so special. rather than separating us, this old finds us together as a nation. it has become common in the
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worlds of -- words of general mccaffrey, a national place of healing. jan scruggs began this effort with three people and $2,800 of his own money. and for some of us that remember, $2,800 back then was a lot of money. he wound up creating a movement that altered but the physical landscape here on the mall and the psychological landscape of our nation. jan, your journey has helped heal a generation and we can never thank you enough. and startling contrast in the days of my youth and in ways i never imagined possible, the american people are fully behind our men and women in uniform, and their families.
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i am convinced that the lessons we learned from vietnam, the lessons of vietnam veterans have taught us, have played a big part of in this. it is taken many years for america to try to set things right for vietnam veterans and their families, and yet many task remain undone. many wounds remain unhealed. indeed today we are striving to meet their needs and to field looks visible and invisible ones for our afghanistan and iraq war veterans and their families. i truly believe that staying connected is the first out to healing the wounds. in my mind, one of the best ways we can strengthen this connection, cement this bond, is to listen and learn from our vietnam veterans. bettors like decorated marine corps veteran jack lyon, how posttraumatic stress coach who tells his young counterparts,
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you are all brothers but now you also have lots of locals here if anything comes up. whether it is coping with read or meant anxiety or suicidal thoughts, having an experienced saddle but you can turn to makes all the difference. my good friend and former commandant who fought in vietnam said every marine, every soldier he ever saw who was in combat suffered from post- traumatic stress. and i readily believe the same is true for today's ground forces. posttraumatic stress is one of our signature wounds. so i encourage all vietnam vets, the uncles and aunts at large in particular to reach out to our young warriors to help remove the stigma associated with seeking help for posttraumatic combat stress. just like those young marines
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are lucky to have jack, and i hope many others, looking out for them, on may 1 we were all lucky another vietnam veteran was lookingd out for waswanye jackson, on entrepreneurship 4210 broadway, and citizen of the great city of new york. dwanye, thank you for all you are doing in your willingness to get involved when it really mattered. across the country every day, so many vietnam vets are leading and teaching by example, lending a sympathetic ear, running non- profit organizations, even refining are taxes. one person conducted more than
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300 river patrols. he helps today's bevy revise its laws capability in order to meet a new mission, iraqi security training on that country's rivers and byways. has general abbas a once widely notice, the military never gets to choose the kind of wars that its fight. but jack, wayne, and so many bet on veterans had chose to serve the new generations. it often takes more than one generation to overcome the nation's greatest challenge. and so it is with today's wars. as a new generation has learned, some of the tussle is less -- applies some of the toughest lessons we learned in vietnam, patience and practice as some -- and pragmatism, learning skills sharp and in vietnam, so many are relevant to today's effort. we know we stand on the -- with
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dependent children of vietnam veterans as they give all they can to provide their children, our grandchildren, a safer world. so is veterans of all generations, separate yet similar, gathered today to commemorate the fallen, to remember those on this wall, let us honor their legacy by learning from them, listening to one another, and stay connected in the future. on behalf of the more than 2 million members of the united states armed forces, they you all. may god bless our men and women in uniform, their families, our vietnam veterans, and the united states of america. thank you. [applause]
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>> at this time we would like to and knowledge the family members of the service men whose names were recently added to the wall. there's some on the dias behind me. what we will like to do is ask a person from each family to go to the podium and read their loved one's name. >> corporal ronald vivona. >> sergeant michael morehouse. >> lance corporal john granville. >> lieutenant colonel william taylor.
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>> captain edward miles. >> lance corporal clayton hough, jr. >> thank you all very much. of mine. that was his son reading his name. he spent a quite a while and afghanistan recently. he is very happy to be home. we will now begin the procession to the wall. it will be accompanied by the
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playing of "amazing grace" on the bagpipes. accompanying him on by a land will be brianna kahane. i will tell you the names of the organization's placing wreaths at the memorial, which are now getting into place even as i speak. the first one will be placed at the memorial by the national park service, followed by the vietnam veterans memorial fund. ♪ ["amazing grace" playing]
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>> the vietnam memorial foundation placing a wreath, followed by the american gold star mothers, the gold star wives of america, the sons and daughters staying in touch. and now --
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♪ >> now the veterans of foreign wars will place a wreath at the vietnam veterans memorial. the american legion. amvets. the nine commissioners -- and noncommissioned officers association of the united states. the military order of the purple heart.
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the vietnam veterans of america. paralyzed veterans of america. seventh caller -- seventh cavalry, the battalion. the 25th infantry division. the first marine aircraft wing. the association of the 27th infantry. the vietnam veterans motorcycle club. scottish american military society.
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second brigade motorcycle club. the vietnam veterans memorial wall trip commission. ladies and gentlemen, at this time, i would ask staff sgt of the united states army to play taps at the vietnam veterans memorial. ["taps" playing]
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>> we thank you. ladies and showman, we would ask you to stay in place while we to leave the area and has scored some of the vips out to have some security is -- who have some security issues.
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>> here is what is ahead on c- span. a discussion of water tape. and then commencement addresses, featuring leigh anne tuohy, the mother of michael oher, and more commencements after that with deborah bial, who runs the posse foundation. his government broken? the brookings institution is hosting a panel discussion tomorrow asking that question. the will of the challenge to good governance and talk about ways to strengthen democracy.
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this gets under way live at 1:00 p.m. eastern on c-span2. and campaign 2010 is kicking up. live coverage of the debate among the republican candidate for south carolina governor. william and mary university hosting the event. we will have that for you starting at 7:00 p.m. eastern here on c-span. >> c-span -- our public affairs content is available on television, radio, and online. you can also connect with us on twitter, facebook, and youtube. sign up for schedule alert e- mails at c-span.org. >> now bob woodward and carl bernstein talk about watergate and the state of american journalism at ohio state university. as reporters for the "washington post," woodward and bernstein began investigating the
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watergate break-in. from columbus ohio -- from columbus, ohio, this is about one hour and 10 minutes. >> i'm bob, he's carl. good to get that out of the way. >> i think the best thing we can do, given what people seem to be asking us lately, particularly about could this happen again? is to tell you a little bit about what we did and what happened. because it is very anomalous, concerns of the way that we in terms of the way journalism work then and the way it works now. we were reporters at the "washington post." i happen to be in the office on that day, june 17 or 18th, 1972.
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bob was called in by the city editor. >> if it was a nice day. and it was a saturday. and the editors in the morning said, who would be dumb enough to come in and work today? [laughter] and my name immediately came to their lives. >> and i was already in the office. i was late handing in another piece. that was a good story, obviously better than the piece i was working on. >> you never got that he's done, did you? >> i think i did. anyway. five men had been arrested in the headquarters of the national democratic party, wearing rubber gloves. they found them in business
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suits and they found -- as the police report would have a -- $100 bills in sequence, as well as wiretapping equipment. so obviously this was a story not about your average burglary. >> and the approach we took was the police reporter happened. what happened? what can we find out? it was very incremental -- just some examples, another reporter found out from the police there with these cryptic entries in the address books of two of the burglars. and howard hunt had been the
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director -- the operational director, and as carl and i looked at this, w house. and call said, this could only be one of two claims. -- two and things. [laughter] he said the whorehouse and i said the white house. >> the rest was history. >> this was our empirical approach. .
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>> tells them about what we did in september of 1972, one of the most important source we did, i think, showing that john mitchell, who had been the attorney general for richard nixon and campaign manager, that he controlled this secret fund of $700,000 in cash that was kept in a safe. you have the same thing here at the john glenn school, do you not? [laughter] >> i wish. >> i think the important thing to start with the premise is we had this advantage of not being
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national political reporters. at the time, there was a common belief among the national political reporters in washington that there was it so called new nixon and that there existed this perfect, well oiled white house machinery that was really incapable of mistakes. here was this break-in that logic, particularly after we had found the money, we had traced some of the money to the committee for the reelection of president nixon, logic would tell you this has something to do with the white house. get the conventional belief, including among our fellow reporters, both at the "washington post" and the national staff and the town and
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general, there were about 2500 national reporters at that time -- >> many people called it the watergate caper. like it was kind of a joke. >> it made no sense at first. george mcgovern was going to be the democratic nominee for president. there were certain extent would beat him. why would any campaign chicanery go on. in september, we were able to establish that the president's campaign manager and former attorney general of the united states had controlled the secret fund, paid for the bog at watergate and other undercover activities against the democrats. washington was a different place then. you could make a phone call and it john mitchell on the telephone. i have a phone number for him. i thought i could get him. on that occasion, the white
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house, as it had throughout the first weeks after the break-in, had made our conduct rather it in the conduct of the president and his men. the president and others would get up and attack us at the washington post for making up fiction and having any political agenda. they did it on this occasion, too. we wrote the story that said mitchell controlled of this fund. i called mitchell and said we have a story -- >> you got him, he was asleep. >> he said what time is it? i said 11:00. he said 11:00 when? i said at night. he may have had a pop or two. i said we have a story a would like to read to you.
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i began reading. john mitchell while attorney general of the united states controlled a secret fund. he said jesus. i read a few more words by which time it said john mitchell well attorney-general controlled a secret fund and paid for undercover activities against the political opposition. i got that far and he said je sus. i got to the end of the third paragraph by the time the draft was clear, he said jesus christ. you are going to print that crap? if you run that, then a person from the washington post is going to get her tit caught in a
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big effect render. i was not accustomed to talking to an attorney general. i jumped back from the phone myself because of fear of my own parts because this can certainly have the power to squeeze them. he went on to say when this campaign is over, we are going to do a little story on you boys, too. in retrospect, it is an amusing story, but i was 28 years old at the time. it was about the most chilling time in my 50 years of journalism that i ever experienced. this was a man of enormous power and the threat was real. i believe to this threat in terms of being intimidating. i called ben bradlee, the editor of "the washington post" to tell them what happened and he said mitchell really said that?
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i said yes. and you have it in your notes? he said put it all in the paper except for the tit. [laughter] >> i think the language was leave out the tit. [laughter] >> that is what we did. mrs. gramm came up to my desk. i would not used to seeing her. she said to you have any more messages for me? [laughter] it was also just before that story that when we had the information about mitchell and we started to understand about the money and how it went for more than just the balking at watergate, a couple days earlier, we were discussing how to write this story. we met at a vending machine room
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off of the newsroom floor. i felt this chill go down my spine, literally. it is the only time i really felt a chill. >> and john mitchell jumped out of the vending machine. [laughter] >> i said oh, my god, this president is coburn to be impeached. this is about eight weeks after the break-in. you said you are right. i do not know where it came from. woodward said we can never use that word impeachment around this newsroom, lest anybody think we have some sort of agenda. awe of that moment stays with me. one of the reasons is, and bob
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can talk about this, watergate was not a keeper. it was about a fundamental attempt by the president of the united states to misused and abused the constitution, obstruct justice, and more than anything, to try to undermine the very electoral process of our government. >> this is the important part. there were dirty tricks. there were all kinds of things aimed at the democrats who were going to run against nixon and they wanted what they perceived, i think accurately, they wanted the democratic nominee to be george mcgovern. they really went after senator muskie who was the front runner and spied on him. they had 50 spies out in the
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campaigns writing false press releases. they literally had the gas fort senator muskie's chauffeur who would drive him around and bring documents from his senate office over to his campaign headquarters. there were so many documents that the nixon campaign wanted copies of the chauffeur called and said rented an apartment full-time and bought a xerox machine and in trips between but photographed documents for the nixon campaign so they knew about speeches, strategic plans, personnel shakeups, and everything. if you were to list the things they did to him, they threw him off the raill by getting the weaker candidate. if you really look at it, they
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tampered with everybody's vote by saying this was not just something done, have fun, or it was not just dirty tricks. it was a strategic plan aimed at giving the weakest nominee and they did it. >> it is hard to imagine how different that time is and yet, we are asked continually, could this story happen again? my answer always is could reporters do this story again? absolutely. really what good reporting is is the best obtainable version of the truth. it is a very simple phrase and a
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complex process but the basic element of the process are really knocking on doors. it is really about the reporter's going toothe sources. very early in the game, we got a hold of a list of the employees of president nixon's reelection committee. it was a couple hundred people. it was treated almost like a classified document. it had their phone numbers, their room numbers, and we were able by transposing the phone numbers and the room numbers and the names to almost make a chart of who worked for home and we went out at night, we knocked on doors and tried to see these people and their homes. one of the first things that happened is we encountered their fear. they told us more than many of
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them were telling us with their information that something momentous was here. >> what is interesting is we were gathering facts, supported by the editors at the post, she had a lot on the line. what is really important to understand is the institution of "the washington post." some truly independent newspaper and voice. we could have found out these things and editors and publisher could have said we are not calling to publish this. they said that we have this responsibility. they are really turned us loose and we were able to work full- time on this. very unusual for to
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particularly young reporters like ourselves. i remember in january of 1973, we had written all of these stories essentially saying there is a major criminal conspiracy being run and conducted in the nixon white house. this was not believed to a level that i think we did not it knowledge between ourselves. over on the national staff, people were kind of looking at us as some kind of kooks. >> telling the editor of the paper that he should assign this story to the national political reporters because real were endangering the future of the newspaper. >> catherine graham back to us and ask us for lunch. i remember this much. we knew her a little bit. not very well.
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this is really an important management story. she blew my mind and with the question she asked about watergate. she had read everything we had written. she knew henry kissinger who was the national security adviser for nixon. she even read something in the "chicago tribune." i wonder what she was reading the damn "chicago tribune." nobody does and wash -- nobody does in chicago. she was sweeping all of this in. i was really stunned and later we described it as this capacity to manage mind on, hands off. intellectually involved but not telling us how to report or at it. at the end, she had the killer question.
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like a good ceo, which is when is the whole story going to come out? when do we find out the whole truth? i said that we felt very strongly that the burglars were being paid, criminal conspiracy, they come are -- the compartmentalized information. people were frightened, truly fearful to talk to us about this. my answer was never. she had this really awful to go probably never. >> i said never. she looked at me with a pained look on her face and said never? do not tell me never. i left lunch in motivated employees.
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[laughter] it was not a threat. it was a statement of purpose. what she said is used all of your resources. or have an obligation to journalism, to ourselves, but it goes beyond that. if we have a truly, as we believed, a criminal conspiracy being run out of the white house, we have to validate that. we have to get the full story. what is important about that for a newspaper, or any organization, what business are you in? she realized the business we are in is really digging and digging to the bottom of things. not kind of just printing the
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daily press release. that support that added, that fortitude, quite frankly, that was the x factor. >> i think this gets to where we are today perhaps in some ways. i went to work 50 years ago this year. i spent the first four years at the washington star which was also a great newspaper. this notion of the best obtainable version of the truth really being what we do, what we are about, we have comics. but everything goes into this idea of we are trying to look at the world in countries around us, the community and described it in terms of what is really going on. that is our responsibility and there is public trust that comes with that.
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i do not want to be nostalgic about another age. great journalism is the exception, not the rule. sometimes even good journalism might be the exception. this notion of what newspapers and what the press was about, there was an element commonly believed about our basic function. >> i think it is there. the problem is the business model. newspapers are not making money. >> >> i would argue with you on that. i think it is there in much less regard because in fact, while newspapers were still making 19% of the margin of profit four years ago, i think that was still the average. >> even four years ago, i think we have lost chains accumulated
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more and more newspapers. the best obtainable version of the truth became less and less the ideal in our business. happily, we have had several newspapers, where that has remained the case. those newspapers in many regards are better than they were at the time of watergate. >> sir you agree with me? >> never. when it came, but the nixon people then did was the washington post had just become a public company. the nixon white house made it clear that if we pursued this story any further and continued
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to do this kind of reporting, that it intended, the white house, to see that the television licence which was the economic life blood of the country -- of the company would be revoked by the sec. the response to that was we are going to continue doing what we do and when our records were subpoenaed by the re-election committee and a lawsuit, mrs. graham to us i am going to take possession of your notes. >> can you see the picture of furred getting out for limousine going into the d.c. jail? the point is, she was willing to take the responsibility for the institution. does that situation exist today?
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i think much less so. i think also we have a media environment in which we are losing to some extent because of the pressure of speed, manufactured controversy, gossip, the web partly, which i think is a great reporting platform but we also need as removed to these platforms to bring to them the standards of the desk of the old journalism. >> very quickly in rebuttal, i am saying they're very good examples of journalism and the spirit is there. if you -- if you used to have a staff of 200 and you now have a staff of 100 which is what happens to a lot of newspapers, they cannot do the digging and in-depth reporting but i think
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the vitality is their and my argument is that the people on the business side need to find that business model and things will get better. but i agree with you, there is not enough of this and the culture of impatience and speed. >> we have set a tone here that will now enable you to go at us. >> our guest will be pleased to take your questions. if you have a question, we ask you to come to a microphone so that everybody can hear. who would like to ask the first question? if you do not get up at the microphone, i will go ask carl a question. >> it might happen. >> somebody has to go first. i guess i will. in the movie "all the president's men" there's a scene
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when the editor shouted across the room woodstein. is that true? >> yes. >> thank you. >> that was a no-brainer [laughter] editor who did not like what we were doing for a long time used to call as the gold dust twins. i am not sure what that meant. >> with 40,000 journalists being laid off this past year alone, what d.c. the future of journalism being? >> what was the first part? >> 40,000 journalists have been laid off in the past year. >> 40,000 journalists have been laid off at traditional journalistic institutions. my guess their air that many more that call themselves journalists who are doing work on the web. by think that we are in a new
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era in which there is movement all over the place. i think some of the great journalistic institutions are going to persevere and put out most of their product on the web. but let me ask a question here. of those of you who are students, how many get most of your news from the web? and of those of you who are students, how many of you read a daily newspaper in newspaper form? there is part of the answer to your question. >> a statement first. my firm belief is that this country will never say you're likes again. that may be pessimistic in nature but it leads into my
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question. in a country that is concerned about whether the president of the united states is a citizen, is there room for investigative journalism that makes any sense any more? we have people that no longer to concentrate on the importance of being american citizens and the essence of being americans. where are your forces? the only investigative reporter i can think of today, and he is a force in the wilderness. he comes up with things and nobody cares. >> i disagree with your characterization. here is why. >> i think there is no question that we have had, particularly in the last 20 years, a dumbing down of our political culture to some extent and also of our
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culture in general. particularly of our media culture. the idea that we have been uninterrupted, a nation in which the service during -- the are handed the paradigm, i am not sure what we are seeing is anomalous. that there has always been a tendency in our politics whether we're talking about power moved between left and right, and also, i think great journalism that has always been the exception. even good journalism has been somewhat of an exception. i think we get a bit too
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nostalgic about a golden age. my question is, if you remember when we had done the preponderant of our reporting, nobody in this country paid much attention to it. the information was there to connect the nixon white house. >> he is going to disagree me. >> know. i would not disagree with me. we asked the question and trying to recount some anecdotes from working on the watergate story, how do we go about it? it is empirical. still think there is a lot of empirical recording and it really is the key. i did four books on president bush and his wars. i had the luxury to spend a year or to getting documentation,
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getting memos, beginning minute notes that would describe exactly what went on. for three of those books, bush allowed me to come and interview him for hours about what he did and how he made these decisions. i think it kind of got lost. some not my fault. the extent to which he and knowledge to, particularly in the last two years, the extent to which he became disengaged from the presidency. let me just give you an example. and we published it in the post and in the last bush book because it shows something and i think it applies or may apply to the presidency in general and that is the fatigue factor. you'd just get tired. when i interviewed bush for the
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last book, the big question was how did you decide on sending 30,000 troops with the surge in iraq? it was kind of the key strategic decision he made in the last two years on the iraq war. his national security adviser intervened, a very self effacing man, very unusual for him to intervene, he said that was worked out between me and the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff. you know what wtf means, do you not? where is the president? i turn to bush in this is what he said. ok, i do not know that. wtf moment two.
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then, he said i am not at those meetings, you will be happy to hear. i was just delighted. [laughter] why should the president bother himself? then he said i got other things to do. >> ride the bike. [laughter] right out of his own mouth. right out of his own mouth is an acknowledgement that he disengaged from the presidency. i think people to not want to deal with that. he is going out of office. he was leaving. when i interviewed him, he had seven months more in the office. i kept looking around his chair to see if he had a suitcase packed. [laughter] he was out of there.
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i am trying to connect this to the point that there are a lot of ways to find out what really went on. this is out of the president's own mouth. people read it and asked if it was a confession. to a certain extent, it was. >> it is very revealing about the bush. i think in the answer to an important question that you just raised, what happens when the knowledge is out there, as in this case, and the people of the country do not respond we think they ought to or the way that one might reasonably expect people to react to a group of circumstances or fax? the same thing happened in watergate is what i am getting at. there was no uprising against
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nixon until very late. there was, finally. i believe that really the last time that we saw the american system really worked was watergate. the press did its job. a great judge and the judiciary did his job and compelled some answers from these burglars. the congress of the united states did its job and initiated an investigation the president of the campaign activities, including the president's watergate committee, congress then went on to have a house impeachment committee which continued to investigate and the committee voted articles of impeachment against the president. the supreme court of the u.s., led by the chief justice
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appointed by the president of the united states, decided the president was not above the law and had to turn over his tapes to a special prosecutor and the president of the united states resigned with bipartisan impetus and desire for that to happen. that, i think, is a significant difference in terms of what we have today. i think our political system is not functioning -- >> what i am saying is i think that the idea that you could get a supreme court decision is questionable. the tapes. i do not know. the notion that you would have
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impeachment proceedings and an investigation during the bush years, it seems to me, i am not suggesting that he should or should not have been impeached, but certainly there was cause for congressional oversight and investigation of how we had gone into this war and many of the things. >> having spent eight years of my life on this, the problem with that is, the congress of the united states passed resolutions authorizing the iraq war 3-1 in the senate and house. how are they going to launch some sort of investigation or impeachment of bush for doing -- >> of the conduct of the war. i think there is plenty of room for congressional investigation. >> what i think that we all know and see how the congress of the
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united states is hamstrung today in gridlock. >> >> with the internet and average and everyday people getting more of a voice and people turning to the internet for the news, the you think that journalism is being compromised at all by people getting news who are not necessarily trained or held accountable? with people blogging about the news were not trained journalists, do you think journalism is being compromised. >> do we think it is being compromised by people who are not trained? i do not. i think there is a different
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problem. we do not have enough news institutions, whether they are on the web or whether they are print, in which staff of journalists are encouraged to do the hard work of good reporting and knock on doors and be good listeners and go out in search of the best obtainable version of the truth. i think that is the problem and the web has made it a greater problem rather than a lesser problem. at the same time, i think that there is far more information available today. it is a question of sorting it out on the web. you can do great things like you want to know about what is going on in the middle east and you do not want to rely on american newspapers. you go to with the arab point of view is.
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it is a different environment. again, i think there is a tendency for nostalgia. somebody asked earlier about you did not used have rush limbaugh and this one are that one and all of these loud voices. i would say that in other areas, you had the trumpets of columnists that we have a continuation of a noisy politics. and a noisy and opinionated journalism. that conforms to some extent a process of commentary in this country that has been on going through our history. >> it may be different now. next question. [laughter]
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>> i want to see why. my question is mostly geared toward mr. woodward. i have read many of the books you have written since watergate. can you tell me how you get these high-ranking officials to tell you things that could probably have them lose their jobs? >> a good question. the whole reason we're here today. we know it is not charm. we can eliminate that. i have time to work on these things. i can get the detail from somebody who took notes at a national security council meeting. i can then talk to somebody else and fined them five other people who were at the meeting. i would send bush and 20 pitch
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memos saying this is what i have found out. i would like to talk to you. my colleagues at the post, once said you sent george bush a 20 page memo. you are crazy. don't you know from his biography and all those years it yale, there is no evidence that he ever read anything that long? what makes you think he will start now? but he did. i spent hours to win over with him and other people involved. this empirical method. i want to find out what happened i think another technique that works is to take people as seriously as they take themselves. to know who they are. if somebody has written a foreign affairs article 20 years ago, i will redid and ask them
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about it. i am working on a book on president obama which will be out in the fall which will have the exact kind of cinema verite of this is what happened in this is what people said. it is just reporting and knocking on doors at night. i told the story earlier. when i was working on the last bush book, there was a general who would not talk to me. i sent e-mails, i left messages, nothing. i found out where he lived. in the old technique we would not on their door. the best time is 8:18 at night. people have even if they are at home.
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they have not launched another activity. it is really psychologically the perfect time. i knocked on this general's door. he opened the door and looked at me and you know what he said? he said are you still doing this shit? [laughter] i nodded. you know what he did? come on in. why did he do that? i am serious about it. i wanted to understand his point of view. i think there is a little bit of the secret shiver mostin people in this auditorium. >> people tell the truth. reporters tend to be, and this is something that television made much worse, television reporting, where reporters come in through a microphone in front of your face and have an idea
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that their purpose is to manufacture controversy, not to learn what is actually happening. in fact, we need to be good listeners. that is the other thing. give people a chance to tell their story. our sources and watergate were not democrats opposed to richard nixon. there were people who worked for nixon and for most part believed him. if you afford people a certain respect. common sense goes a long way in being a reporter. figure out who the right people are to see. go see them and listen to them. next question. >> in one of my classes on campus, we were discussing the to review and how the white house press corps had a deep- seated hatred for you because you broke the grid is story ever of the presidency of today. my question is how you rate
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currently the white house press corps? but the informing the voters or is it to scripted? >> it is a really hard job. carl has made this point. back during watergate, they had this apparatus to keep us from talking to people and to defend, it is even a better and more professional group of pr people, spin doctors, who are there. you have to penetrate that. i think covering the white house daily is a job and they have already and then to find a way to get behind the scenes -- behind-the-scenes is difficult for the course it is not just the white house press corps. certainly, the run up or whatever you want to call it to the war was an awful moment for the american press with the w
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md story, missing it, and the most important thing we do as reporters as decide what is news. leading up to the war, i think we did a pretty terrible job about deciding what is news. >> to confess, i knew as much as anyone about it and i fault myself mightily for not being more aggressive in asking the questions. carl talks about common sense. it was ingrained there are wmd's in iraq. people asserted i had some clues about it. i agree with that. that does not mean the cia and white house did not screw up. >> there is a larger point here. once the war started to go badly, i believe that the reporting on the bush presidency by a good number of
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reporters, partly by bob but reporting by the "new york times" and other news organizations, the reporting on the bush presidency, which was a highly secretive presidency, was an awful lot of mendacity. a real dislike for the press. it is almost everything we know for about the bush presidency is we know from the press. we do not note from congressional hearings. we do not know from anything candid that the bush white house ever put out. we know it from the press. i think the reporting on the bush presidency after the first six months of the war is a pretty hon. history of washington reporting. >> you mentioned there needs to be an adjusted business model.
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i am wondering what your thoughts are on what that might be. " how old are you? >> 22. >> i am 67. you figure it out. [laughter] it is your job. [applause] >> seriously. the people who did the google and facebook and so forth, it is the new generation. it is a big problem. i am counting on you. what is your name? >> meredith. >> go to it. [applause] you have your assignment. >> let me follow up on that. what advice would you have for somebody starting out in investigative reporting? >> how old are you? >> we have talked about this. we do not think investigative
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reporting is a special category. it is in-depth reporting. it is reporting. go find in newspaper or organization and did in and enjoy it. when you get on to something, whatever it is, do not let up. >> i have a question. how many people here voted for barack obama? how many voted for john mccain? how many of you are pleased with the job that obama is doing? how many of you would like to see a different precedent? -- president. i am just curious. when know who we are talking with. [laughter] now we can pander a little more.
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[laughter] we should have asked that in the beginning. >> it is a great job being a journalist. you make money -- momentary entries into people's lives. guess what? you get to get out when they cease to be interesting. doctors, lawyers, you are stuck with the appendixes and pains. you go into a newsroom and i think this is one of the reasons we love the news, it is electric. what is going on? what is happening? what do we not know about it. what is our approach and methods to find out? >> the most amazing moment of my life, i was 16 years old and i walked into a newsroom.
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i remember that to this day. i did not get the job. i was going to apply for the job. i was a copy boy. the guy who gave me the tour and rer,was my perspective highe took me over to a cart or the newspapers had just come. he said take one. they were born from just having been printed. i will never forget that. >> it sounds almost sexual. [laughter] >> it almost was. >> the warm newspaper. >> coming on to your web site. next question. >> regarding the government's insistence on the good news story regarding two wars in iraq and afghanistan, what is that doing to the government and at large and our country and the
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state of journalism and why are in majority of the major news outlets buying into the good news story? >> what is the good news story? with that things are going well. >> i have not read that lately. >> i missed that. >> everyone's and while the president might say it but even he does not say. i think that in fact, especially of late, there are stories of afghanistan about how difficult this mission is and that right now in iraq, there is terrible internal strife. it is affecting the withdrawal of our own troops and we will continue to withdraw despite the the courts and the economic conditions. just talk to the people at goldman sacks about the ability
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to sell a good news story. most of the news is pretty grim and i think people realize, certainly reporters. >> thank you for being here. >> i will say that we are nearing the end of the time so we will not take many more questions. >> i sort of think of you gentlemen is the lennon and mccartney of journalism. [laughter] >> somebody said the ham and egg. >> it seems to me from what i know about you that this sort of have a creative tension along the lines of london and mccurdy. i wonder about the political tension that came to bear when you were working on the watergate project and how you
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think that might have had a positive or negative impact on the work you did. >> good question. >> i think both of us would say today that team reporting and group reporting can produce results and give you an extra element that is pretty hard to beat. in our case, we asked this question for the first time a few minutes ago. if it had been two different people come up with the same results have occurred? i doubt it. maybe but i doubt it. things happen on our own time. particular circumstances. and our case, there is no question in this time in place there is a remarkable synergy, what ever you want to call it. a complementary blending of
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skills, deficiencies, that everything worked right. >> we are dear friends. as you can see, there are still disagreements. did you notice? [laughter] we come at things in a different way. >> which is terrific. >> at the beginning when we were working together, we would say what the is that? my reaction now is maybe that is right or let's look at it that way and so forth. >> a very early, i think each of us came to understand that the other had a different outlook on aspects of all kinds of questions. but there was a real reason to respect both the outlook skills and the methodology of the
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other. we often switched roles. >> i can be honest about this. the had been a reporter not two years. >> three weeks, right? >> you landed your first job in the coolidge administration. [laughter] >> garfield, actually. >> i went to graduate journalism school. you taught me many things, sometimes with a hammer and sometimes by example. in terms of the relationship, it was what happened here? what is going on? if you look at that story just on the face, the mysteries
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compound themselves. we were in charge, as reporters, of explaining this. what really happened here? who caused this? what does it mean? that is why we loved it. we were both on married. carl had his warm newspaper to go home to read that. i had nobody to go home to at night. [laughter] we worked. >> i am just curious. and our current political culture where i opened the newspaper and read the entire series anything you were talking about with bush, i want to hide my head under a pillow. is it simply because you are woodward and bernstein did you do not just quit and hide your head under the pillow? >> are you talking about %+formation -- i think there is terrific information out there.
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>> even with everything that has gone on in the political culture, i still want to think good things about our politics is all just that. -- just bad. >> i am going to turn this around on you. sarah palin is not the president of the yet states. -- of the united states. [applause] i would say maybe there's say half empty, half full think a win on here. obviously, i think there is reason to be really concerned about our political culture but also, you cannot divorce that from our larger culture. you could not divorce our journalism and how we did and
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the way it is delivered to us from what else is on those platforms, whether on the web or reality television. we are part of a larger fabric. i think the answer to your question about your head under the pillow may have to do with concern about that larger fabric. i am concerned about that. i think that larger fabric, there is reason to be pessimistic about that larger fabric, more than i have ever thought. >> to more questions. >> mine is going to be a little more philosophical. nobody has asked this yet about deep throat.
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>> we have a question from somebody and aristotle. it won't be more philosophical than that. [laughter] >> certain people came together at just the right time. like you were saying, the synergy worked. you had the right editor. you have the right owner. do you look back and think that deep throat and the way, did not know the whole story, that you knew him from the four, could you have broke it without him? do you think it was divine intervention it all came out? >> we had so many sources, you could write a thesis that he was important. you could write a thesis that he was not important. i think we look back on its now and we are glad that he actually came forward a

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