The Michigan Daily - Friday, August 10, 1984-- Page 5
TEN YEARS AFTER HIS RESIGNATION
Nixon returning to public life
From AP and UPI
WASHINGTON - Ten years ago yesterday, a
typed letter was delivered to the secretary of state.
"I hereby resign the Office of President of the United
States," it said. It was signed: "Sincerely, Richard
The one-sentence note marked the end of a
remarkable period in American history in which an
American president tried to hide White House in-
volvement in a squalid burglary, got caught at it, and
was finally forced from office as scandal after scan-
dal was opened to public scrutiny.
"IT IS HARD to believe that 10 years ago Mr. Nixon
resigned his presidency," Rep. Thomas Downey (D-
} N.Y.) told the House of Representatives on Wed-
nesday. "I think it's appropriate that we take time to
reflect on those 10 years because it gives us an in-
dication of what is right with this country and what is
What is right, Downey said, "is that we proved our-
selves to be a nation of laws and not of men, that no
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affirmatively, she asked, "How do you
"I'm unconscious," he replied.
In fact, most of the holes
administrators found in their disaster
plan were primarily due to the fact that
t wasn't the real thing.
"ONE OF THE hardest parts of this
V to get people to be serious about it,"
said University Hospital nurse Ruth
And some of the problems clearly
were attributable to the unreal
atmosphere, such as when 20 patients
were virtually ignored for several
minutes because they were a short
distance away from the bulk of the
injured. If it were an actual tornado,
officials said, emergency personnel
would have been directed to help those Univers
patienta much earlier.wihfk
At University Hospital, security with fak
officer Robert Tiehen said the large
number of security officers and
scurrying medical personnel combined
with a loud union rally being held in
front of the hospital worried some
AFTER THE victims left for the
hospitals, leaders of the agencies
discussed what problems they had with
the exercise, and the consensus seemed
to be that establishing the command
post was the biggest problem - no one
seemed to know who was in charge.
Ann Arbor Fire Chief Fred Schmid
said his units could have established an
effective command post, but "it's a
little hard for a fire department to take
over in someone else's territory."
Schmid praised the quick response by
emergency vehicles. "In 23 minutes, we
had 11 emergency vehicles on the
scene," he said.
"Nobody really took command of the
command post and delegated duties, so
you didn't really have a command
post," said another fire department
But not everyone looked at the
situation with such gravity. Referring
to a particularly attractive female
victim, one would-be rescuer boasted,
"I did get full vital signs on her."
individual was .exempt from the law and that if you
violate it, the very foundations of our Republic, you
would be punished as Richard Nixon was."
What is wrong, he added, "is that we have a collec-
tive amnesia as a nation ... Richard Nixon has made
a remarkable comeback. Forgotten are the things
that he did to this nation."
NIXON, the successful author of four books since his
resignation, has gone from self-imposed exile to
sought-after speaker; from a pariah shunned by his
party to fund-raiser; from president who felt it
necessary to proclaim "I am not a crook" to oracle on
All this was impossible to foresee on Aug. 9, 1974,
when Nixon said goodbye to his staff and friends and
left the White House with a final, defiant, V-for-
He bade an emotional farewell to his staff,
promised "I'll be back" and left the White House in
AT THE HEIGHT of the scandal that drove him
from office, Nixon asked Americans to stop
"wallowing in Watergate" and get on with the
business at hand - the Vietnam War, then winding
down; oil shortages with nerve-frazzling gasoline
lines and rising inflation.
His plea was in vain.
For more than a decade - and with no prospect of
subsiding - America's fascination with Watergate
and its fading figure has approached an obsession.
EVEN THOSE citizens who in increasing numbers
are willing to forgive are not ready to forget. Nixon
remains one of the most controversial leaders ever.
Opinions of him range from reverence to hatred -
but never indifference.
Elliot Richardson, whose resignation prompted the
first public calls for Nixon's impeachment, commen-
ted Wednesday: "I think he (Nixon) still thinks in
terms of self-justification rather than an apology to
the American public. I think that is sad. He had it in
his grasp to bea great president," he said.
ity Hospital employees rush a "victim" from a mock disaster drill into the hospital yesterday. Thirte
.e wounds were "treated" at University Hospital during the drill.
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