EnemiesList.info

Nixon's "Enemies List" usually refers to the names published in newspapers in 1973, even though there is only one short list that can confidently be called a White House enemies list without quotes (see intro to First List). Young White House Aide John W. Dean III used the term "enemies list" loosely in his testimony before Congress, giving an eager press license to use the term for any of the names that came out of the "Opponents List and Political Enemies Project."

The NRA took down its official NRA Opponents List in early February 2013. (The link is to the Internet Archive version.) Sadly, they hadn't learned that recognition for opposing a powerful, self-righteous organization tends to become a badge of honor. Congratulations go to Jane Fonda, Norman Lear, Barbra Streisand and Joanne Woodward (Newman) for getting listed on both. The New York Times and the Washington Post also merited double recognition. The list is more than 10 years old, but attracted renewed publicity in January 2013.

In June 1974, Congress found no evidence that the IRS had been used to harass people on these lists. Nixon may have harassed people using the FBI and IRS, but not as a result of inclusion on these lists. Many people on the list, like Dan Schorr, were harrassed, but Nixon didn't need a list to know that he hated Dan Schorr. Others, like John Lennon, were not on any list, but were still harassed by the FBI. Still others, like L. Ron Hubbard, falsely claimed to be on the List and targeted by the FBI, but that was back when there was no good way to search all the Watergate testimony in order to disprove his claim. Thus, the "Enemies List" is more about bragging rights than political victimization.

A few thoughts on the late Hugh Hefner

Hef was on the Second List under “McGovern Staff Members and Campaign Contributors,” so it was simply his campaign donation that got him listed. As he told the National Security Archives Project in 1999, “I was on the enemies list during the Nixon era because I was supporting and donating funds to more liberal democratic, democrat causes....” He did much to promote civil rights and fight censorship, including giving fellow Enemy Dick Gregory his big break at the Playboy Club in 1961. The Washington Post noted his place on the Enemies List, but not the NY Times. In his groundbreaking and very controversial life, the Enemies List was not a big deal. Separately, he was investigated by the FBI, which was a bigger deal and had nothing to do with his place on the List.

See his entry here for more and feel free to add some interesting details.

Still, the notion of two "Enemies Lists" (one published in newspapers on June 28, 1973 and the second on December 21, 1973) is part of American culture now. Here are a few reasons the interest endures:

You can search all 823 surnames and organizations on the lists (at top right) or browse the lists in their original order (at left). If you're familiar (or family) with an "enemy," please add a note about the details of his/her opposition to Nixon. What was the reaction to inclusion on the lists? If the list was mentioned in their obituary, please copy-and-paste the text. Any detail to help identify the person is appreciated, such as birth and/or death dates. This is an informal web project, but could help researchers some day.