Nixon Left Ex-FBI Chief to 'Hang Slowly, Twisting in the Wind'

Patrick Gray III: Patrick Gray III, who has died aged 88, was the ultimate fall guy of the Watergate burglary.

A Nixon loyalist who was made director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the day after J Edgar Hoover died, he was too naive to survive in the shark pool that was president Nixon's Washington.

Left, as a Nixon aide put it, to "hang slowly, slowly twisting in the wind", he was ordered to destroy FBI files of the investigation into Watergate and did so. The White House fed him fake files alleging that the Kennedy administration had been complicit in the murder of president Ngo Dinh Diem of South Vietnam. All the while Gray's deputy, W Mark Felt, resentful that he was not made Hoover's successor, was secretly meeting Bob Woodward of the Washington Post to give him a lead on what the FBI knew.

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