After 30 years, we finally know the identity of Deep Throat, the confidential source in the Watergate scandal which brought down President Richard Nixon. It was FBI second in command, Mark Felt.
I’ve been waiting for years to find this out, even though I’ve never heard of this guy. I was always hoping it would be someone close to the president, like Henry Kissenger. Anyway, I just hated not knowing.
What amazes me is how Washington Post reporters Bob Woodward, Carl Bernstein and their editor Ben Bradlee managed to keep it a secret for so long. I mean, there has to have been pressure. People at parties saying, “Oh come on, you can tell me..” Or publishers offering millions if Deep Throat’s identity was identified in the next book. You have to admire their ability to keep that big a secret for more than thirty yearas.
It’s also amazing how no one guessed and there were lots of folks working pretty hard trying to figure it out based on the evidence. The main contenders were Patrick Buchanan, speechwriter and special assistant to Nixon; Stephen Bull, a Nixon aide; speechwriter Raymond Price; Jonathan Rose, attorney for regulatory affairs; speechwriter David Gergen; Gerald Warren, deputy press secretary; and Fred Fielding, assistant to White House chief legal counsel John Dean. Although these folks were mentioned often and Fred Fielding was presented as the best bet in a Smithsonian article, Mark Felt’s name never came up.
This is a guy who knows how to remain in the shadows. And not just in parking garages.
Now what I would like to know is why there’s even a question as to whether Mark Felt was a hero or a villain? I can understand why Pat Buchannan would call him a traitor (interesting in itself, since Buchannan topped the list of Deep Throat possibles) And you know convicted Watergate burglar G. Gordon Liddy would say pretty much the same thing.
But what’s up with the rest of you?
So let me set you all straight. Deep Throat is and always was a hero, whether his identity was known or not. He saw corruption in the Nixon administration and he helped bring it to light by keeping a couple of young reporters on the right track
Mark Felt changed history. For the better.