Former Richard Nixon operative Roger Stone confronted Watergate figure John Dean at the Teas Book Festival in Austin Saturday, prompting a fiery back-and-forth and mutual threats to see each other in court.
Dean, who was involved in the Watergate cover-up as White House counsel before providing the testimony that put the nail in Nixon’s coffin, appeared at a forum to promote his book “The Nixon Defense: What He Knew and When He Knew It.”
Stone, author of the more favorable-to-Nixon book “Nixon’s Secrets,” accused Dean of ordering the Watergate break-in and pulling Nixon into the cover-up, a charge that Dean denied.
Dean unsuccessfully fought behind-the-scenes to prevent Texas A&M associate professor Luke Nichter from appearing on the panel. Nichter, who earned legal threats from Dean after publishing audio recordings purporting to reveal new details about Dean’s involvement in Watergate. Nichter co-authored the 2014 book “The Nixon Tapes” with historian Douglas Brinkley.
“As of now that war wages on between Dean and the Texas Book Festival,” journalist Len Colodny wrote in an email to Stone. “He refuses to appear on any panel that has Luke on it. Nothing has been settled at this time.”
“Brinkley refused to go forward without Luke,” Colodny wrote in a subsequent email. “Dean furious his tapes are going to Texas A&M.”