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Woodward & Bernstein

The book by the reporters that helped bring down a corrupt administration. Washington Post reporters Carl Berstein and Bob Woodward helped the paper win a Pulitzer Prize and put it all together in "All the President's Men."


Watergate: Deep Throat

If Washington Post reporters helped unravel the mystery of Watergate, they created an enduring mystery in the process: Who was "Deep Throat" - Woodward's source in the executive branch?

So Who Was Deep Throat?

UPDATE: May 31, 2005: Deep Throat has been revealed! Read more here.

Only four people know for sure: Deep Throat himself (or herself), Woodward and Bernstein, and Washington Post Editor Ben Bradlee, who was told by his reporters. Bob Woodward has said he will not reveal the identity of Deep Throat while he is alive or unless he releases him from their "agreement." Many have guessed but no one has proved who it was. This is one of the most remarkable secrets of the past 100 years.

Some have become so frustrated by not being able to finger the culprit that they have concluded that "Deep Throat" is actually a composite of several sources. But Woodward has said Deep Throat was indeed a person. "It would be absurd for it to be a composite," he told The Associated Press.

In their book, the reporters said Woodward's source was "in the Executive Branch" and "had access to information at CRP [Committee for the Re-election of the President] as well as at the White House."

Woodward had taken to calling him "my friend." But because the source insisted on talking on deep background -- no quotations, even anonymously -- then-Post Managing Editor Howard Simons coined the nickname, "Deep Throat," after the title of a famous pornographic movie of the era.

Woodward noted that Deep Throat was a smoker and that he drank Scotch. "Aware of his own weaknesses, he readily conceded his flaws," the reporters wrote. "He was, incongruously, an incurable gossip, careful to label rumor for what it was, but fascinated by it. ... He could be rowdy, drink too much, overreach. He was not good at concealing his feelings, hardly ideal for a man in his position."

After Richard Nixon resigned, Ben Bradlee, then the Post's executive editor, said he asked Woodward to tell him Deep Throat's identity and Woodward did. Bradlee told the AP, "I have never told a soul."


The Washington Post's investigation at times mirrored the FBI's. Officials at the FBI themselves suspected the Post was getting their info from a source at the Bureau. In an article in the May 1992 Atlantic Monthly, former Post reporter James Mann recalled Woodward claiming to have a "friend at the FBI."


Here are the people who have been "accused" of being Deep Throat:

Alexander Haig

Alexander Haig was the Chief of Staff in the Nixon Administration. When Haig ran for president amidst rumors of being Deep Throat, Bob Woodward publicly announced Haig was not Deep Throat. Woodward has made such pronouncements on only three occasions.

ABC News

Diane Sawyer

Press Assistant in the White House. Ms. Sawyer helped former President Nixon write his memoirs in the mid-Super70s. She has worked for CBS and later ABC News for well over 20 years and has co-hosted ABC's Prime Time Live since 1989.

John Dean

Nixon's Counsel in the White House.

Fred Fielding

John Dean's deputy.

Leonard Garment

White House advisor.

Robert F. Bennett

Currently a Senator of Utah,

Henry Kissinger

Secretary of State under Nixon and Ford. 

Henry Petersen

Assistant Attorney General in Nixon administration.

William E. Colby

Served in various capacities but later became part of C.I.A.

Cord Meyer


L. Patrick Gray

L. Patrick Gray was a Justice Department official who was appointed by President Nixon to be acting director of the FBI after J. Edgar Hoover's death in 1972. The Watergate break-in happened just over a month after Hoover's death. During the Watergate investigation, Gray lived within four blocks from Woodward.

W. Mark Felt

F.B.I. official.

Charles W. Bates

F.B.I. official.

Robert Kunkel

F.B.I. official.

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