Daniel Ellsberg: The Doomsday Machine

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Daniel Ellsberg worked at the Pentagon and the RAND Corporation during the Vietnam War before deciding to release documents (The Pentagon Papers) in 1971 that showed the US government knew the war was basically unwinnable and lied to the public about it. Charges under the Espionage Act against Ellsberg were eventually dismissed. His forthcoming book, The Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner, is a first person account of the United States' nuclear program in the 1960s. After initially supporting the Vietnam War, Ellsberg eventually came to see the deaths from the war as unjustified homicide. He says that had it not been for draft resisters and other whistleblowers, he would not have leaked the Pentagon Papers. And he tells Scheer about what kept Richard Nixon from using nuclear weapons in Vietnam.

Photo by Christopher Michel