The Watergate Crisis

Topics: Watergate scandal, Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford / Pages: 10 (2327 words) / Published: Jan 24th, 2000
Richard Nixon 's presidency is one of the most examined, analyzed and discussed, yet least understood, of all the
American administrations in history (Genovese 1). While many factors still remain to be discovered, and many mysteries are left to be resolved, we need to do the best that we can to make sense of this secretive president of our past and his era. He is the one American figure about whom very few people don 't have strong feelings for. Nixon is loved and hated, honored and mocked (Genovese 2).

The term 'Watergate ', labeled by Congress in 1974, stands for not only the burglary, but also for the numerous instances of officially sanctioned criminal activity and abuses of power as well as the obstruction of justice that preceded the actual break-in (Kutler 9). Watergate involved the political behavior of the President and his men, beginning during Nixon 's first term and extending to his resignation. Some of the criminal behavior was a result of the disastrous events of the 1960 's.
These events include the civil rights movement, the controlling of cities and most importantly, the Vietnam War (Kutler 9). In
H. R. Haldeman 's book The Ends of Power, he quotes, 'I firmly believe that without the Vietnam War, there would 've been no Watergate ' (Haldeman 79). He goes on to say that the Vietnam War destroyed Nixon as completely as it ruined
Johnson.

Originating in Kennedy 's term, Vietnam grew to be even more of a disaster after his assassination. The tidal wave of problems crashed abruptly on Johnson, who consequently made them worse. The American society was dividing.
Furious protests made Johnson portray a scapegoat for the nation 's anxieties (Kutler 10). Then Nixon stepped into the picture in the presidential elections of 1968. He was successful with 43.6 percent over Humprey 's 42.7 percent and Wallace 's 13.5 percent (Genovese 6). He promised that he would "bring us together". The riots grew and the divisions



Cited: Emery, Fred. Watergate. New York: Times Books, 1994. Haldeman, H.R. The Ends of Power. New York: Times Books, 1978. Hargrove, Jim. The Story of Watergate. Chicago: Children 's Press, 1988. Kilian, Pamela. What was Watergate? New York: St. Martin 's Press, 1990. Alfred A. Knopf, 1990. New York: Atheneum Publishers, 1975.

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