The Watergate Scandal, also known as the Nixon Watergate scandal or the Checkers Speech, is widely considered to be one of the most important events in American history that led to the downfall of a president. It all started when then-President Richard Nixon lost a checkers game with his two children at Camp David.
The event was captured on tape and became public, and it ultimately brought down Nixon’s presidency. But what exactly happened that led to this downfall? Let’s take a look at how the events unfolded, and how they eventually led to Richard Nixon’s resignation from office.
How did Watergate start?
The Watergate Scandal began on June 23, 1972, when an 18-year-old Daniel Ellsberg of the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) leaked the so-called “Pentagon Papers” to the New York Times and other newspapers. The papers revealed that the U.S. Government had tried to manipulate public opinion around the Vietnam War.
The leak of the papers was part of the larger “War on Vietnam” that was being waged at the time by the Nixon administration. The Nixon administration was outraged and wanted to find out who was responsible for the leak.
Richard Nixon and his top aides, who were all Republicans, believed that the leaks were coming from within the Republican party. Nixon, on the other hand, claimed that the involvement of the Democratic party was “ridiculous.”
Cover-up phase: June 23 – July 22, 1972
Nixon was determined to get to the bottom of the leak and, as a result, launched an investigation into the matter. Nixon’s Chief of Staff, H. R. Haldeman, together with Nixon’s lawyer John Dean, devised a plan to make it look like there was a “third party” involved in the leak.
This third party was referred to as “Deep Throat.” Deep Throat was a code name; neither the identity nor the gender was revealed. To determine if there were any internal flaws in the government, the FBI conducted extensive wiretaps.
The Watergate scandal was, however, found out when one of the wiretaps was accidentally published by a news outlet. The scandal was then widely reported by the media and caused an uproar among the American public.
Accidental Leak phase: July 23 – August 5, 1972
By July 31, 1972, the FBI’s investigation into the Watergate scandal was in full swing. The President’s men, however, had planted a Trojan horse within the investigation. The Trojan horse was a government official named G. Gordon Liddy, who was an FBI agent at the time.
Liddy was part of a small group of Nixon’s men who were tasked with carrying out illegal activities on behalf of the government. This group of men was referred to as the “Plumbers.” The group’s other members included E. Howard Hunt, who was a former CIA agent, and G. Gordon Liddy, who was a former FBI agent.
The White House Tapes phase: August 6 – September 8, 1972
By this time, the Watergate scandal was in full swing. The public was demanding to know the truth, and the media was doing an excellent job of covering the story. Nixon, on the other hand, was focused on covering up the scandal and silencing the media.
In August 1972, the White House launched a secret plan to destroy the tapes that recorded Nixon’s conversations from the Oval Office. This plan was called “the plumber’s plan.” Nixon’s men, who were part of the Plumbers, had been secretly recording Nixon’s conversations from the Oval Office.
The plan was to buy a safe and remove the recordings from the White House. Nixon’s men planned to destroy the recordings, and then buy the safe from a company that sold safes. The plan was, however, unsuccessful.
Impeachment phase: September 9 – November 15, 1972
By the end of August 1972, the Watergate scandal was in full swing. The media, on the other hand, was doing an excellent job of covering the scandal. The public, on the other hand, was outraged and demanded to know the truth.
The media, on the other hand, was doing an excellent job of covering the scandal. As a result, the American public was outraged and demanded to know the truth. Nixon and his men, on the other hand, were determined to cover up the scandal and silence the media.
To do so, Nixon and his men launched a smear campaign against the press and public figures who were demanding to know the truth. The smear campaign was called “Operation Clean Clean.”
The campaign was launched to intimidate and silence those who were demanding to know the truth. Nixon and his men waged a smear campaign against the press and public figures who were demanding to know the truth.
Aftermath and legacy of the Watergate scandal
The Watergate Scandal has been widely regarded as one of the most important events in American history. It is considered to be one of the most important events in American history, and it led to the downfall of the 37th President, Richard Nixon.
The scandal is also widely considered to be one of the worst presidential scandals in U.S. history. After the scandal was uncovered, Richard Nixon pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor violation of the Federal Privacy Act on August 5, 1974.
Nixon was fined $500 (the maximum allowed) and also ordered to pay the costs of the investigation. Nixon’s resignation took place on August 9, 1974, after he was forced from office following the release of the famous “Watergate tapes.” These tapes revealed that Nixon and his men ordered illegal activities.