The Norman Transcript

Nation/World

November 3, 2012

Pulling back the curtain

WASHINGTON — Some documents sealed in the 1970s as part of the court case against seven men involved in the Watergate burglary must be released, a federal judge in Washington says.

U.S. District Chief Judge Royce Lamberth said in a two-page order Friday that some materials being sought by a Texas history professor should be released. He gave the National Archives and Records Administration a month to review and release the materials.

Luke Nichter from Texas A&M University-Central Texas in Killeen wrote the judge in 2009 to ask that potentially hundreds of pages of documents be unsealed. Nichter also runs a website cataloging secret recordings made by President Richard Nixon in the White House.

He says the court records could help explain the motivation behind the 1972 break-in at the Democratic National Committee’s headquarters that ultimately led Nixon to resign from office two years later.

Attorneys for the U.S. government said earlier this year that they would not oppose the release of some of the files.

But government attorneys argued that three categories of documents should remain secret: those containing personal information, grand jury information and those regarding the content of illegally obtained wiretaps.

Lamberth agreed Friday that those documents should remain sealed for now. But he ordered the Department of Justice to copy those documents and explain why each should not be made public. The department has a month to submit that information to the judge who will then decide whether to order the information released.

The records Nichter is seeking relate to the case of U.S. v. Liddy. The case involved the five men arrested during the Watergate break-in as well as the two men who orchestrated the operation, G. Gordon Liddy and E. Howard Hunt.

Nichter said in a telephone interview Friday that Lamberth’s order unsealing the records is exciting, but he doesn’t know whether they’ll provide any major Watergate revelations.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Nation/World
  • Judge asks pointed questions in gay marriage case

    DENVER — A judge in Colorado who will play a pivotal role deciding whether gays should be allowed to wed in the United States asked pointed questions Thursday about whether Oklahoma can legally ban the unions....

    April 18, 2014

  • Sudan: 12 die after mob attacks UN base

    JUBA, South Sudan — An angry mob of South Sudanese youths attacked a U.N. base on Thursday to harm members of an ethnic minority sheltering inside. Peacekeepers were forced to open fire, amid rampaging violence that killed at least 12 ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Astronomers spot most Earth-like planet yet

    LOS ANGELES — Astronomers have discovered what they say is the most Earth-like planet yet detected — a distant, rocky world that’s similar in size to our own and exists in the Goldilocks zone where it’s not too hot and not too cold for ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Creek, old purse solve mystery

    ELK POINT, S.D. — Cheryl Miller and Pamella Jackson had planned to celebrate the end of the 1971 school year by gathering with classmates at a quarry along a gravel road....

    April 18, 2014

  • Chaotic scene described on sinking ferry

    MOKPO, South Korea — There was chaos and confusion on the bridge of a sinking ferry, with the captain first trying to stabilize the listing vessel before ordering its evacuation, a crewman said Thursday....

    April 18, 2014

  • Tiny power plants hold promise for nuclear energy

    PARIS — Small underground nuclear power plants that could be cheaper to build than their behemoth counterparts may herald the future for an energy industry under intense scrutiny since the Fukushima disaster, the incoming head of the ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Organizers confident of safe race

    BOSTON — The arrest of a man with a rice cooker in his backpack near the Boston Marathon finish line led police to step up patrols Wednesday, while organizers sought to assure the city and runners of a safe race next week....

    April 17, 2014

  • Ukraine bares teeth against eastern uprising

    KRAMATORSK, Ukraine — In the first Ukrainian military action against a pro-Russian uprising in the east, government forces repelled an attack Tuesday by about 30 gunmen at an airport, beginning what the president called an “anti-terrorist ...

    April 16, 2014

  • Supremacist faces murder charges

    OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — The white supremacist charged in shootings that left three people dead at two Jewish community sites in suburban Kansas City made his first court appearance Tuesday....

    April 16, 2014

  • Iran cuts nuclear weapons ability

    VIENNA — The United Nations will release a report this week certifying that Iran’s ability to make a nuclear bomb has been greatly reduced because it has diluted half of its material that can be turned most quickly into weapons-grade ...

    April 16, 2014

Video
Facebook