2013 Silha Lecture: "The Lessons of the Pentagon Papers: Has Obama Learned Them?"

Featuring James C. Goodale, former vice chairman and general counsel of the New York Times during the Pentagon Papers litigation

Everyone has heard of the "Pentagon Papers" case. But only a few know what happened behind the scenes. The top-secret Department of Defense documents exposing U.S. government policies during the Vietnam war were only part of the story. The strategies, decisions and negotiations between the larger-than-life characters from the worlds of law, politics, journalism and the military that shaped the outcome of one of the most important First Amendment cases in U.S. history took place behind closed doors. When the Supreme Court of the United States ruled in favor of The New York Times and the Washington Post in 1971, it set an almost impossible standard for the government to meet to justify censoring the press -- a standard that has never been met. Yet.

As of 2013, President Obama has indicted more leakers of classified information than any other President. His administration has threatened to pursue espionage charges against WikiLeaks and Julian Assange. Do the government’s claims of secrecy and national security stand up to scrutiny today? Have we learned the lessons of the Pentagon Papers?

The 2013 Silha Lecture will be delivered by James C. Goodale, author of the new book, Fighting for the Press: the Inside Story of the Pentagon Papers and Other Battles.  Goodale is a leading First Amendment lawyer who was vice chairman and general counsel of the New York Times during the Pentagon Papers litigation. He has also been a TV host and producer; a partner in Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, a major New York City law firm; and has taught at Yale, NYU and Fordham law schools.

For more about this event, click on any of the following links:
Minnesota Public Radio interviewed Mr. Goodale for "The Daily Circuit" on MPR News. 
Silha Bulletin story following the 28th Annual Silha Lecture
Silha Bulletin story promoting the 28th Annual Silha Lecture

Event Location

Cowles Auditorium, West Bank

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