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Rusk WWWWWW, James L. (Jim) Greenfield, circa 1986

Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, University of Georgia
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00:00:23 - Introducing Greenfield and Rusk's relationship

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Partial Transcript: Jim Greenfield was a Time Magazine correspondent...

Segment Synopsis: Rusk outlines Greenfield's career and talks about Greenfield's cover story on the newly appointed Secretary Rusk. Greenfield says Rusk wanted the American people to know his moral beliefs, diplomatic principles, and priorities so he could build consensus in foreign policy.

Keywords: NYT; New York Times; State Department; diplomatic correspondent; public affairs

00:06:24 - No pretenses / Rusk's meticulous preparations

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Partial Transcript: I can remember when we got to New York City...

Segment Synopsis: Greenfield's anecdote about Dean Rusk chasing his hat down the sidewalk while carrying his own suitcases represents Rusk's lack of pretenses. Greenfield claims that he and Rusk were close and often talked about his true concerns over drinks at night.Greenfield says Rusk always predicted complications and counterarguments.

Keywords: Rockefeller Foundation; contingency; preparedness

00:10:49 - Rusk and the press

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Partial Transcript: What kind of boss was he?

Segment Synopsis: Greenfield says Rusk was often disappointed in the lack of governmental support from the Washington press corp. He relays an anecdote demonstrating Rusk's emphasis on loyalty. Greenfield says Rusk allowed him to admit mistakes and created a culture of respect. He claims Rusk never lied and was always articulate and extremely well prepared for press conferences, but that he always drank beforehand.

Keywords: media; press secretary; reporters

00:19:10 - Rusk and Bobby Kennedy / Press opinions of Rusk / Vietnam policy

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Partial Transcript: Your father had his problems with the Kennedys.

Segment Synopsis: Greenfield explains that Bobby Kennedy wanted to undermine and replace Rusk, and he relays an incident in which RFK embarrassed Rusk. He claims the press saw Rusk as less exciting than Dean Acheson, but most did not have problems with him. Greenfield recalls talking about Vietnam policies with Rusk, saying that Rusk believed the U.S. should not change courses mid-war.

Keywords: Joe Alsop; Robert F. Kennedy

00:24:57 - Peggy Rusk's wedding coverage

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Partial Transcript: I travelled with Secretary Rusk all over the country.

Segment Synopsis: Greenfield describes Rusk as consistent and honest in the face of questioning. He talks about Time magazine's coverage of Rusk's daughter's interracial marriage, stating that Rusk was worried about his family's privacy and welfare, rather than what the public would think of his progressive family.

Keywords: Margaret Rusk; daughter; publicity

00:27:47 - Characterizing Rusk

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Partial Transcript: In thinking about his mannerisms...

Segment Synopsis: Greenfield says Rusk read mystery books and wore Hawaiian shirts to the office, but was never actually relaxed. He commends Rusk's gracious nature, recalling that Rusk once allowed Greenfield's mother-in-law to stay in the other room in his hotel suite because there were no vacancies. Greenfield describes Rusk as a "historian at heart."

Keywords: Cherokee County; Georgia; personality

00:31:04 - Rusk, Johnson, and Kennedy / Anecdotes about Russia /

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Partial Transcript: What about his relationships with his two presidents?

Segment Synopsis: Greenfield explains that Rusk had a good relationship with Lyndon Johnson because of their shared rural experience. He tells stories from his trip to the U.S.S.R. with Rusk and discusses a press controversy surrounding a letter to an American who wanted to be a missionary in the U.S.S.R.

Keywords: Sochi; Test Ban Treaty

00:36:13 - Managing press controversies

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Partial Transcript: We had a far more serious controversy in the Spring of 1965.

Segment Synopsis: Greenfield comments on President Johnson's early denial of activity in South Vietnam. Greenfield and Bob McClosky felt that they had to tell the truth, according to Dean Rusk's wishes. He talks about confronting controversies immediately to prevent their growth.

Keywords: LBJ; buildup; media