Daniel Ellsberg began his career as the coldest of cold warriors--a U.S. Marine Company Commander, a Pentagon official, an analyst at the Rand Corporation and a staunch supporter of America's battle against Communist expansion. In October of 1969, he began smuggling out of his office and xeroxing a seven-thousand page, top-secret study of U.S. decision making in Vietnam. In revealing the "Pentagon Papers" to the American public, Ellsberg set in motion events that eventually toppled a presidency and ended a war. His recent book, Secrets: A Memoir of Vietnam and the Pentagon Papers, tells the story.
Ellsberg has become a prominent speaker, writer and activist on issues ranging from national security to the ethics of leadership. A frequent visitor to Colorado back in the late 70's and early 80's, Ellsberg blocked rail and road access to the Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons plant between Boulder and Golden along with hundreds of other activists. In December 2002, Ellsberg was arrested--along with over 100 religious leaders of numerous denominations and faiths--for protesting the impending war with Iraq in front of the U.S. Mission to the UN.