History Humor

The Best Minds of a Generation, Naked, and Destroyed by Madness

[digg-reddit-me]Scott Shane in The New York Times describes this little known story now available as part of the freshly indexed archive of Kissinger telephone calls:

In April 1971, Mr. Kissinger accepted a call from the beat poet Allen Ginsberg, who hoped to arrange a meeting between top Nixon administration officials and antiwar activists.

“Perhaps you don’t know how to get out of the war,” Ginsberg ventured.

Mr. Kissinger said he was open to a meeting. “I like to do this,” he said, “not just for the enlightenment of the people I talk to, but to at least give me a feel of what concerned people think.”

Then Ginsberg upped the ante. “It would be even more useful if we could do it naked on television,” he said.

Mr. Kissinger’s reply is transcribed simply as “Laughter.”

[Picture courtesy of Linda Bisset licensed under Creative Commons.]