Thomas Fleming replies: Mr. Nixon linked Truman with the Communists in literally hundreds of speeches. In her biography of Nixon, Fawn Brodie writes: “One looks back with ever greater incredulity at Richard Nixon’s success…at convincing so many Americans that Truman was a secret protector of a ‘Communist conspiracy’ in the United States.”
According to a newspaper clipping in the file of the Harry S. Truman Library, on October 18, 1952, in Utica, New York, and on October 27, 1952, in Texarkana, Arkansas, Nixon accused Truman of “covering up…an internal Communist conspiracy in the United States.”
Admittedly this is not quite saying Mr. Truman was a Communist. But considering the fact that Mr. Truman was eighty-six at the time and we both were talking with modest amounts of Bourbon in our glasses, I don’t think our conversation strayed too far from the truth.