9781565848528 / 1565848527

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About the book:

Never-before-heard recordings of secretly taped oval office conversations with eight US presidents.

The President doesn't know the position of the administration so you can't know it.President Lyndon Johnson to Walt Rostow on Vietnam policy, March 4, 1964

Historian John Prados and The New Press have procured recordings made by eight Presidents of their oval office conversations. Never intended for public consumption, these recordings offer portraits of the nation's chief executives responding to and taking action on some of the most critical events of the late twentieth century.

Including phone conversations and confidential meetings, the set offers candid, unscripted exchanges with top aides, political figures, and heads of state. One exchange constitutes the famous "smoking gun" tapes of the Watergate era. Another sequence has Lyndon Johnson finding out from J. Edgar Hoover about the murders of three civil rights workers in Mississippi just as he also learns from Robert McNamara about the breaking crisis in Vietnam's Gulf of Tonkin.

The set includes eight digitally remastered CDs of presidential conversations and transcripts of the conversations with historical introductions by John Prados. An additional CD features the companion radio documentary "White House Tapes: The President Calling," produced by Stephen Smith of American RadioWorks® for an upcoming national broadcast on public radio. Boxed set: hardcover with 9 one-hour CDs.

Contents include:
Franklin D. Roosevelt
" the racial integration of the Armed Forces
Dwight D. Eisenhower
" the situation in the Far East
Harry Truman
" the Marshall Plan
John Kennedy
" the March on Washington
" the Diem coup in Vietnam in 1963
Lyndon B. Johnson
" the murders of civil rights workers in Mississippi in 1964
" the Gulf of Tonkin Incident
Richard Nixon
" "Smoking Gun" tapes
" The Vietnam War and the invasion of Laos in 1971
" Discussion of Jews in the media, with Billy Graham
Gerald R. Ford
" the first US/Russian joint space mission
" Middle East Peace Agreement in 1975
Ronald Reagan
" the Iran-Contra Affair in 1986

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