Author, “leaker” of the Pentagon Papers
Daniel Ellsberg worked on the top secret McNamara study of U.S. Decision-making in Vietnam, 1945-1968, which later came to be known as the Pentagon Papers. In 1969, he photocopied the 7,000 page study and gave it to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee; in 1971 he gave it to The New York Times, The Washington Post and 17 other newspapers. His trial, on twelve felony counts posing a possible sentence of 115 years, was dismissed in 1973 on grounds of governmental misconduct against him, which led to the convictions of several White House aides and contributed to the impeachment proceedings against President Nixon.
Ellsberg is the author of three books: Papers on the War (1971), Secrets: A Memoir of Vietnam and the Pentagon Papers (2002), and Risk, Ambiguity and Decision (2001). In December 2006 he was awarded the 2006 Right Livelihood Award, known as the “Alternative Nobel Prize,” in Stockholm, Sweden, “…for putting peace and truth first, at considerable personal risk, and dedicating his life to inspiring others to follow his example.”
Since the end of the Vietnam War, Ellsberg has been a lecturer, writer and activist on the dangers of the nuclear era, wrongful U.S. interventions, and the urgent need for patriotic whistle-blowing. He is a Senior Fellow of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation.
Ellsberg spoke alongside Judith Ehrlich and Rick Goldsmith at a Screening and Discussion of 'The Most Dangerous Man in America' and the Panama Papers at The Common Good in 2010.