“i Think Hiss Is Lying”


Over the years, Nixon lauded Chambers as a man of truth, although he had no illusions about the fate of the informer. He told Haldeman in March, 1973, “Hiss was destroyed because he lied—perjury. Chambers was destroyed because he was an informer, but Chambers knew he was going to be destroyed.” And though he detested Hiss from their first meeting for his arrogance and “100 percent certified gentleman” manners, it was not Chambers but Hiss—“twisting and turning and squirming…”as Nixon had described him, “evading and avoiding”—whom the cornered President would imitate during Watergate. It would be one of the most arresting ironies of Richard Nixon’s life.”