Newly revealed documents confirm what many people had long suspected: U.S. President Richard Nixon intentionally sabotaged negotiations that could have ended the Vietnam War in 1968.
Writing in the New York Times, author John A. Farrell reveals that newly unearthed notes held by top Nixon aide H. R. Haldeman show that Nixon in October 1968 had given orders to throw a “monkey wrench” into a deal that was being negotiated by the Johnson administration that might have brought an end to the bloody conflict in Vietnam.
“Nixon had a pipeline to Saigon, where the South Vietnamese president, Nguyen Van Thieu, feared that Johnson would sell him out,” Farrell explains. “If Thieu would stall the talks, Nixon could portray Johnson’s actions as a cheap political trick.”
Throughout his life, Nixon insisted that he did nothing to undercut the Johnson administration’s negotiations, although these new notes show that he blatantly lied about this.
After Nixon was elected president, he escalated America’s presence in Vietnam and tens of thousands more people died in the war.