United States and American History: 1970

About the history of the United States in 1970, population, the Chicago Seven on trial, Kent State University shootings, the CIA and Chile, Nixon overreaches.


--U.S. population--203,211,926.

Jan. 5 Joseph "Jock" Jablonski, the defeated reform candidate for president of the United Mine Workers union, and his wife and daughter were found murdered in their home in Clarksville, Pa. W. A. "Tony" Boyle, the UMW president and Jablonski's opponent, was convicted 4 years later of ordering the assassination.

Feb. 20 The Chicago Seven-Abbie Hoffman, Jerry Rubin, Tom Hayden, Rennie Davis, David Dellinger, Lee Weiner, and John Froines-were convicted of a conspiracy to cross State lines and instigate a riot at the Democratic Convention of 1968. Tom Hayden stated: "We were invented. We were chosen by the Government to serve as scapegoats for all that they wanted to prevent happening in the 1970os." Black Panther leader Bobby Seale, a defendant in the case, was silenced in November, 1968, after being bound with chains and gagged in the courtroom. Judge Julius Hoffman, justifying this measure, said: "I would tell you, sir, that the U.S. District Judge who practiced law in the courts of the U.S. and sat on State and Federal benches for 50 years has to sit here, sir, and have a defendant call him a pig? Listen to him now." william Kunstler, the attorney for the defense, replied: "Your Honor, we cannot hear him because of the binding and gag on him." In time, all of the charges and contempt citations against the defendants were dropped by higher courts.

Apr. 30 American troops began what President Nixon called an "incursion" into Cambodia.

May 4 National Guardsmen killed 4 students at Kent State University in Ohio after a campus protest against the Cambodian invasion. President Nixon called antiwar college students "bums."

May 5 A nationwide student strike, supported on the majority of campuses in the country, protested the extension of the war and the killing of students at Kent State.

May 14 Two black students at Jackson State College, in Mississippi, were killed by police firing on a dormitory.

June 27 Henry Kissinger approved the expenditure of millions of dollars for clandestine CIA action in Chile aimed at preventing the election and inauguration of Marxist Salvador Allende as President. After Allende's ascension to power, Kissinger authorized funds to "destabilize" the democratically-elected socialist Government. Kissinger stated on this date, in a secret meeting of the 40 Committee, the overseer of the CIA: "I don't see why we need to stand by and watch a country go communist due to the irresponsibility of its own people."

July 23 President Nixon approved a plan for coordinating all domestic intelligence into one superagency. The plan's architect, Tom Charles Huston, a White House aide, informed Nixon that the plan had aspects that were "clearly illegal."

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