A tribute to a man who was willing to go to jail to stop the Vietnam War, from Seymour Hersh at seymourhersh.substack.com:
The man who changed America
Daniel Ellsberg at a press conference in New York City, 1972.
I think it best that I begin with the end. On March 1, I and dozens of Dan’s friends and fellow activists received a two-page notice that he had been diagnosed with incurable pancreatic cancer and was refusing chemotherapy because the prognosis, even with chemo, was dire. He will be ninety-two in April.
Last November, over a Thanksgiving holiday spent with family in Berkeley, I drove a few miles to visit Dan at the home in neighboring Kensington he has shared for decades with his wife Patricia. My intent was to yack with him for a few hours about our mutual obsession, Vietnam. More than fifty years later, he was still pondering the war as a whole, and I was still trying to understand the My Lai massacre. I arrived at 10 am and we spoke without a break—no water, no coffee, no cookies—until my wife came to fetch me, and to say hello and visit with Dan and Patricia. She left, and I stayed a few more minutes with Dan, who wanted to show me his library of documents that could have gotten him a long prison term. Sometime around 6 pm—it was getting dark—Dan walked me to my car, and we continued to chat about the war and what he knew—oh, the things he knew—until I said I had to go and started the car. He then said, as he always did, “You know I love you, Sy.”
So this is a story about a tutelage that began in the summer of 1972, when Dan and I first connected. I have no memory of who called whom, but I was then at the New York Times and Dan had some inside information on White House horrors he wanted me to chase down—stuff that had not been in the Pentagon Papers.