In their first face-to-face meeting, G. Gordon Liddy, mastermind of the bungled Watergate burglary, told columnist Jack Anderson that the president's men vetoed plans to silence the newsman. "The rationale was to come up with a method of silencing you through killing you," Liddy tells Anderson on The Real Story, a regional cable television news show.
Liddy, these days a novelist, lecturer and sometime TV actor on the syndicated action drama Super Force, was counsel to the Committee to Re-elect the President in 1972 when GOP-hired burglars broke into Democratic National Headquarters offices in Washington's Watergate complex.
Liddy, who planned the break-in by the "plumbers" unit, said he and other political operatives had a "full discussion" on how to silence Anderson.
"Given their record, I was in no danger," said Anderson, a syndicated columnist who'd been a thorn in the administration's side long before Watergate.
One suggestion, Liddy said, was to dose Anderson with LSD, but another operative, a former CIA officer, "shot that down saying the agency didn't find it reliable."
"Finally they came up with striking your car on a turn and making it crash and burn," Liddy continued. "Something like that at any rate. It was written up in a memo and sent to the White House."
The White House was unambiguous about the idea, Liddy said.
"They said no. It was too severe a sanction," Liddy told Anderson in the interview, their first face-to-face meeting. "Let him alone and no one does things without orders. No one proceeded against you. Thus you and I are sitting here corresponding and chit-chatting, the war being over."
"Actually, I'd known about it at the time," said Anderson, who has written about Washington politics for more than four decades.
Anderson said he believes plumber E. Howard Hunt, who reported to President Nixon's then-special counsel Chuck Colson, carried the "liquidation order" to Liddy.