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Democracy Now! Premieres the Full Interview with Bush Biographer J.H. Hatfield Who Died 2 Years Ago of an Alleged Suicide Amidst Controversy Over his Book Fortunate Son

StoryAugust 11, 2003
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    Today we play an interview that we have held for over three years. It involves allegations of President Bush, drugs, obstruction of justice and corporate scandal. It raises questions about why Bush’s driver license number was changed.

    In the book Fortunate Son: George W. Bush and the Making of an American President author J.H. Hatfield charges that President Bush was arrested in 1972 for cocaine possession and that Bush’s father George Sr. used his political connections to have his son’s record expunged.

    Soon after publication, Hatfield’s credibility was challenged. He had been convicted in 1988 for hiring a hit-man in a failed attempt to kill his boss and had served five years in prison.

    J.H. Hatfield died of an alleged suicide in July 2001. [Includes transcript]

    Click here to read to full transcript

    This is how the story goes: Four years ago St. Martins Press published a book by author James H. Hatfield called Fortunate Son. It is about the life of George W. Bush.

    In the book, Hatfield charges that Bush was arrested in 1972 for cocaine possession. Why wasn’t the future President charged? Hatfield writes that Bush’s father used his political connections to have his son’s record expunged.

    Soon after publication of Fortunate Son the Dallas Morning News received information about Hatfield’s criminal past.

    The media jumped all over it and Hatfield’s reputation and credibility were ruined.

    St. Martins Press promised to turn Fortunate Son into “furnace fodder.” It withdrew 70,000 copies from bookshelves and destroyed them. But a small publisher Soft Skull Press reprinted the book with the banner “The Book They Burned is Back.”

    Hatfield had previously refused to reveal the source of his information about Bush’s alleged cocaine arrest. He now to decided to name him. He claimed it was none other than Karl Rove, Bush’s closest political adviser.

    If Rove did indeed leak the information, he couldn’t have leaked it to a better subject. Soon after publication of the Fortunate Son, Hatfield’s credibility came under fierce attack.

    The media followed the trail laid out for them. They diverted inquiries about Bush’s drug history to stories about Hatfield’s checkered past. He lost two other book contracts and faced financial ruin and obscurity.

    The character assassination finally took its toll. In July 2001, Hatfield was found dead of an apparent suicide in a hotel room in Springdale, Arkansas. He was 43 years old. Police said he left notes for his family and friends that listed alcohol, financial problems and Fortunate Son as reasons for killing himself. He is survived by a wife and daughter.

    Special thanks to Suki Hawley and Michael Galinsky who made the documentary film “Horns and Halos” about J.H. Hatfield and Soft Skull Press publisher Sander Hicks. They filmed the Democracy Now! interview we premiered today.

    • J.H. Hatfield, interview conducted in early 2000. He is the author of Fortunate Son: George W. Bush and The Making of An American President. Hatfield discusses the Bush-Bin Laden connection in the interview which was conducted before Bush was elected President and well before the Sept. 11 attacks. The writer spent a year investigating Bush. J.H. Hatfield died of an alleged suicide July 2001.
    • Toby Rodgers, wrote the introduction to the Soft Skull edition of Fortunate Son: George W. Bush and The Making of An American President.


    AMY GOODMAN : Today we’re going to play an interview that I did more than two and half years ago. But until today have never run. It involves President Bush, allegations of drugs, obstruction of justice, corporate scandal. The person I interviewed committed suicide two years ago.

    This is how the story goes. Four years ago, St. Martin’s press published a book by author James H. Hatfield called ” Fortunate Son” it’s about the life of George W. Bush. The book examines Bush’s past, how he made his millions including from the Texas Rangers baseball team, building of the stadium, millions he made in dubious insider stock swaps to his connections to the BCCI scandal.

    Hatfield also makes another charge, he says Bush was arrested in 1972 for cocaine possession. Why wasn’t the future president charged, he asked. Hatfield writes that Bush’s father, also the President, Bush, senior, used his political connection to have his son’s record expunged. Soon after publication of “Fortunate Son”, Hatfield’s credibility came under fierce attack. The “Dallas morning news” happened to suddenly receive information about Hatfield’s criminal past. He had been convicted in 1988 of hiring a hitman and failed attempt to kill his boss and served five years in prison. The media jumped all over the story, Hatfield’s reputation and credibility were ruined. St. Martin’s press promised to turn “Fortunate Son” into quote, furnace fodder. It withdrew 70,000 copies of the book from bookshelves and destroyed them. The editor in chief of the St. Martin’s Press resigned.

    But a small publisher Soft Skull Press reprinted the book with the banner “the book they burned is back.” J. H. Hatfield had previously refused to release the information about Bush’s alleged cocaine defense. It was none other he said than Karl Rove, Bush’s closest political advisor. The media kept following the trail laid out for them, they diverted inquiries about Bush’s drug history to stories about Hatfield’s checkered past. He lost two other book contracts and faced financial ruin. The character assassination finally took its toll on July 20, 2001, J.H. Hatfield was found dead of an apparent suicide in Springdale, Arkansas. He was 43 years old. Police said he left notes for his family and friends that listed alcohol, financial problems, and the book “Fortunate Son” as the reasons for killing himself.

    Well, today we’re going to play the interview with James Hatfield. I started off by asking him why St. Martin’s press pulled “Fortunate Son” from the shelves.

    AMY GOODMAN: Well, why don’t we start off with why they burned the book or pulled it from the shelves.

    J. H. HATFIELD:Burn is very important because in this country you don’t burn books, publishers are supposed to publish books. The major controversy surrounding the book when it first came out was my past. The book came out on a Tuesday and by Friday it was recalled because they found out I had a criminal history and so the publisher said they doubted my credibility at that point which didn’t make any sense because before that they said it was meticulously fact-checked, scrupulously corroborated, 54 pages of source notes. So you can’t say that one day and then go ok maybe he had a past but one doesn’t have anything to do with the other.

    AMY GOODMAN: What did your past have to do with it. Had you denied it before?

    J. H. HATFIELD: Well I did deny it when I was approached by St. Martin’s. We got a call from a reporter with the Dallas morning news when I was in NY doing publicity for the book and the publisher asked me and I did deny it until I got home a few hours later and talked to my family and talked to my lawyers and then we tried to work it out with the publisher so we could get it back out again

    AMY GOODMAN: Can I ask what your criminal history was and then we’ll go through the book?

    J. H. HATFIELD: The crime that got the attention was that I was involved in a conspiracy to try to kill somebody. That certainly made the headlines .

    AMY GOODMAN: How long did you serve time in prison?

    J. H. HATFIELD: Five years in Texas.

    AMY GOODMAN: Who’d you try to kill?

    J. H. HATFIELD: An associate of mine. I was a vice-president in a real estate company and she was the other vice president and I kinda got caught in the middle between a blackmail scheme with my boss. She was blackmailing him and I passed the money.

    AMY GOODMAN: Was she killed?

    J. H. HATFIELD: Oh no. That’s not to lessen the severity of it. But she wasn’t hurt at all

    AMY GOODMAN: So when did you get out of jail?

    J. H. HATFIELD: 1994

    AMY GOODMAN: And when did you start writing this book?

    J. H. HATFIELD: About October of 1998. After the elections of 1998 and the Republicans lost in the house and Newt Gingrich and those rascals were kicked out and all of a sudden Bush won in a landslide and they thought he would be the future of the party.

    AMY GOODMAN: Why did you take up George W. Bush, the governor of Texas as your subject?

    J. H. HATFIELD: That’s a very good question because at the time that I pitched the book, he wasn’t that well known outside the country. There were some hypothetical polls taken in a match-up with Gore that he would win. Nobody knew anything about him except that he was very popular in Texas. My in-laws are all from Texas, I go down there a lot and of course I used to live in Texas and a couple of places and he fascinated me from a biographer’s point of view, as a subject he was a fascinating person because of his history and who his father was. As a biographer you’re always looking for somebody to write about that you had to have an interest in. It’s just like having a regular job you don’t wanna go to work hating your job, you gotta like what you’re doing and I thought that would be a good book to work on and I also wanted to let the American people know a little bit about him. 10:04:02

    AMY GOODMAN: Give us a thumbnail sketch of George W. Bush as you see him

    J. H. HATFIELD: I think the title really sums it up “Fortunate Son” This is a guy that his entire life he succeeded because of who he is and his family heritage. He went to Andover because of his family connections. He went to Yale because of his father and his grandfather’s connections. Texas Law School turned him down but he got into Harvard because of family connections. He set out in the oil business in Midland back in the 70’s. And just because of his family’s name he got a lot of investors even though all his business is failing, he never was successful in the oil business. It was all bail outs and swap bills and that type of thing. And then he bought into the Texas Rangers for $600,000 while all the other investors paid millions, but, his father had just been elected President and they wanted him to be the managing general partner so he was essentially the face of the team. And he used that to propel his candidacy for governor. If he was George Smith, he would have never been elected governor because he was running against a very charismatic, popular person even outside Texas who was Ann Richards. And now, he has raised all this money. Nobody knows anything about the guy. He’s an empty suit. We’re starting to learn a little bit more about him now and, the money that’s been raised it’s because he’s George Bush and the son of a former President.11:26

    AMY GOODMAN: Let’s talk about his time in Midland as an oil businessman. You go into great detail in the book about the kinds of people who bailed him out. Their connections to his father and the family. The connections to the Persian Gulf war, etc. Why don’t you give us a little more detail.

    J. H. HATFIELD: Yeah. He’s made a lot of money by — being bailed out by his dad’s friends. For example. his first company Arbusto. One of the major investors was James Bath who had connections to the BCCI scandal and Osama Bin Laden family. And why would somebody invest in the son of a vice-presidents first little oil company. I mean you have to have an interest. Just like right now, he’s raised 70 million dollars. When he gets to the White House, if he gets to the White House, you’re naïve if you don’t think those corporate people who got him there, they’ll want something in return.

    AMY GOODMAN: His oil company 'Arbusto' is Spanish for Bush?

    J. H. HATFIELD:Spanish for bush

    AMY GOODMAN: Now, You mentioned Osama Bin Laden. Can you talk about what you think those connections are?

    J. H. HATFIELD:Well, not just myself. I also document ed the book that a couple of award-winning former Time correspondents wrote a book on BCCI and they also mentioned Bath. They said that the 50 thousand dollars that he invested in Arbusto had to come from BCCI because he didn’t have any money on his own. And from the connections he had with the Osama Bin Laden family. So…

    AMY GOODMAN: You said that Osama Bin Laden is the son of the business man he did work with. Do you know that for sure? Is that right that the Bin Laden brothers that is Osama Bin Laden is one of their sons.

    J. H. HATFIELD:Well, its in the family they said. You can’t say that he actually did business with Osama Bin Laden but you have to say it came — it was family. It would be like if somebody did business with the Bush family. Well…I don’t know if George W was involved so it would be with the family. And there’s no denial there.

    AMY GOODMAN: How do you know that the Bin Laden brothers are related to Osama Bin Laden?

    J. H. HATFIELD: Well that’s been documented in lots of places. Not just me but in other newspapers, other journalists, TV elsewhere.

    AMY GOODMAN: And what is Bath’s connection to the Bushes?

    J. H. HATFIELD: Well he was also in the National Guard with George W. back in the 70’s which is interesting too because in 1972 in August, my publisher was able not too long ago to get hold of Bush’s national guard records. And in 1972, at the same time we alleged he was doing community service for cocaine arrest James Bath who was in the unit with him. Both of them were grounded for failing to show up for medical exam. 14:19

    AMY GOODMAN: Wait, what did you say about drugs?

    J. H. HATFIELD: Oh the drug question. Well that’s the $64 question that we raise in the afterword of the book. We say that George W. Bush was arrested in 1972 for possession of cocaine and his father got it fixed and he did community service at Project Pool a minority mentoring program, tough area in Houston for 1 year 14:46

    AMY GOODMAN: Now how do you know he got arrested for cocaine?

    J. H. HATFIELD: Because we have three sources in the book. Three confidential sources but nevertheless they’re close friends of Bush, they’ve been close friends for many years, all the way back to when he was a boy. And there were also sources that I used consistently through the book and other stuff that they’ve told me about was corroborated by secondary and third sources.

    AMY GOODMAN: And what exactly did they say?

    J. H. HATFIELD: Basically, essentially, the same thing each one of them. And I was very careful not to lead the other one on, and say “ok here’s the story here’s what the other person told me”. I would ask is it true about the cocaine in 1972 and they would tell me the story.

    AMY GOODMAN: And what’s the story that they told you?

    J. H. HATFIELD: That he was picked up. That he was taken to jail. He called his father of course. His father at the time was UN ambassador. There is some conflicting stories I have on whether he was actually in town in Houston at time or whether he was in New York. But the truth is, what they all say is that he contacted the judge that was gonna handle the case and he said look “I’m a benefactor of Project Pool, I support them. I’ll make sure George W does his time there in community service,’” and the judge let him out of there. And that’s where he spent the next year. 15:59

    AMY GOODMAN: Now correct me if I’m wrong. Part of the controversy in the St. Maartens book was that the facts could not be backed up. For example, didn’t you say that the judge was a Republican judge and he was a Democratic judge? 16:12

    J. H. HATFIELD: No I never said that.. I have three sources in the book that tell the same story. Two of them say it was a state judge in Texas. One of them says it was a Republican judge. One doesn’t have anything to do with the other. Like I’ve said a million times actually because of that, it validates my corroboration process because if it had just been one source that said hey, it was a republican, I’d be in a lot of trouble. But you got two other sources to say it was a state judge and it’s been almost 30 years. Now its all Republican judges in Harris county, at that time they were all Democrats. But the fact of the matter is the judge was a good friend of the elder Bushes

    AMY GOODMAN: And is the judge dead now?

    J. H. HATFIELD: I don’t’ know. We don’t know who the judge is. There’s a lot of people working on this right now. Because of the exposure we’ve gotten on 60 minutes and the book coming back out. My publisher and myself we’re getting tips from people, we’re getting email. It’s amazing. So we feel that before this election time this year that afterwards it’s definitely going to be validated. And I’ll be vindicated. 17:15

    AMY GOODMAN: Now explain the story exactly as you understand it. What was he picked up for?

    J. H. HATFIELD: Possession of cocaine. I believe, although my source denied it, one of them, I believe that one of them might have been there when it happened.. 17:30

    AMY GOODMAN: Where did they say it happened?

    J. H. HATFIELD: Harris County, Houston.

    AMY GOODMAN: Where?

    J. H. HATFIELD: Oh I don’t know exactly where. But, on the street or something and they were taken to the jail.

    AMY GOODMAN: Were they buying at the time?

    J. H. HATFIELD: I don’t think so. I think it was just pure possession, was the way the story was told to me. But we’ve received email and stories from other people that went to school with him that said he was selling drugs when he was at Yale and a lot of people were starting to respond to that now, so I think there may be a little bit more to the story than we have in the afterword of the book.

    AMY GOODMAN: Did you have any indication that he was selling in Houston?

    J. H. HATFIELD: I never heard that when I was working on the book and I also followed up a lot of stories because people used to say that he was high when he flew planes for the international guard but I never found any evidence to that effect so it didn’t get into the book. If it’s not true it doesn’t go in the book.

    AMY GOODMAN: Did you have any indications of other times he had run-ins with the law around drug use or selling or possession?

    J. H. HATFIELD: Well I’m glad you asked that because there’s a new introduction to the re-issued book now from Softskull written by Nick Mamatas and Toby Rogers that they have an on the record interview with Michael Dannenhauer who is the elder Bush’s former chief of staff where he says that George W. had problems with alcohol and women and drugs back in the 70’s. And I quote “..lost weekends in Mexico” and the mainstream press has kinda glossed over that since the book’s come back out. Cause they said “give us some hard proof,” now we got hard proof, we got a former chief of staff of the elder Bush on there, who’s also a family friend and certainly knows his history. Nobody wants to talk about it.

    AMY GOODMAN: You’re listening to an interview with J.H. Hatfield, author of “Fortunate Son”. He died of an alleged suicide two years ago. This is the first time we’re playing the interview. We’ll be back with J.H. Hatfield in a minute. [MUSIC BREAK]

    AMY GOODMAN: “Backlash Blues,” Nina Simone here on Democracy Now! I’m Amy Goodman. As we return to the interview with J.H. Hatfield, author of “fortunate son” again this is the book that was burned or shredded by St. Martin’s Press then republished by Soft Skull Press. J.H. Hatfield has since died two years ago of an alleged suicide. In his book, Hatfield charges that George W. Bush was arrested for cocaine possession in 1972. He says three unnamed sources claimed a judge had expunged bush’s case and given him a sentence of community service as a favor to his father. James Hatfield died after we did this interview months later. I also spoke in the interview with Toby Rogers who wrote the introduction to the Soft Skull Press edition of “fortunate son”. He says he spoke with the former chief of staff of George Bush, senior, I asked him to describe what happened in those conversations.

    J. H. HATFIELD: Well, originally I wasn’t there to get a cocaine story on G.W. I’m doing my own book on the Bush family, and I was down there for a year. The presidential library, President Bush’s library was just opening up. I was actually really there to get some information on Islam P. Adam who was a heroin trafficker that was busted by the Feds in 1985. And two days before President Bush left office, he was pardoned. And I always thought that story was something worth pursuing. It was blacked out by the press. Everyone was kinda swept up by the Clinton inauguration.

    Well again, I was there to get stuff about Islam P. Adam. I also wanted to find out more about Rev. Yung Sung Moon and President Bush. None of that I was able to get any information on. In fact the pardon, that you can get from the justice dept. is not in the presidential library, but as the conversation unfolded, we were talking about some of the rumors about drinking and the womanizing stories and also the drugs. He seemed to be more open about G.W. than the father. He seemed very protective about his boss but was very open about the son which I thought was very interesting.

    AMY GOODMAN: When did you do the interview? Had George W Bush say that he was running for president?

    J. H. HATFIELD:He hadn’t officially announced. This was in April 1998, almost a year before. You know down there, there was talk about GW running and we talked about that when I met with Dannenhauer. And he was telling me that President Bush was very excited about the upcoming campaign and what not.

    AMY GOODMAN: And tell me exactly what Dannenhauer said to you about George W. Bush?

    J. H. HATFIELD:You know, I heard there’s rumors about drugs and women and drinking. And he basically said, you know, there’s cocaine use, there’s women, but drinking was really his main problem according to him. Who I guess didn’t have a lot of firsthand knowledge about the whole thing.

    AMY GOODMAN: What did he say about drugs?

    J. H. HATFIELD: He said that he was a cocaine user. He didn’t tell me exactly how he knew, but he knew that G.W. had done cocaine. I think they worked together on the '88 campaign. And that's where I know that Dannenhauer was an intern from '85 up and GW has kinda had that special position as a hatchet man at the ’88 Bush campaign. You know if you read any of the books about the ’88 campaign, GW was like—-he was nicknamed the “hatchet man” . He'd be running around making sure — he was the enforcer of loyalty. Obviously someone who’s an employee of the President is gonna be — they might have him rubbed the wrong way or something

    AMY GOODMAN: How did he know he used cocaine?

    J. H. HATFIELD:His boss told him. President Bush.

    AMY GOODMAN: And J.H. Hatfield, just mentioned “lost weekends” what is that about?

    J. H. HATFIELD: If I recall correctly that came out later in the parking lot when we were leaving. I wanted to get a little more on that . Since it seemed like the only thing I really walked away with. I said, “when did he start using” and he said he didn’t know, he said “I know it was sometime before '77 which indicated to me it was before the congressional run, before he ran for congress in 78. I said — I can't remember the whole thing but he basically said at the end there was some lost weekends down in Mexico too that I heard about. 23:44

    AMY GOODMAN: What did he mean “lost weekends?”

    J. H. HATFIELD: Uh, definition of lost weekend? Jim probably knows better about lost weekends in Mexico. I never had a lost weekend in Mexico. Um, but I guess a definition of a lost weekend is probably excessive partying and womanizing and it’s cheap liquor, cheap drugs, cheap everything down there. And I could see how somebody with a lot of money to spend would wanna go down there and go nuts.

    AMY GOODMAN: You said you interviewed him in 1998. It’s now the year 2000. first of all why did Dannenhauer as chief of staff of Bush senior talk to you and tell you this?

    J. H. HATFIELD: That’s a good question. It was a little bit of a covert action on my part. My dad was a heavy Republican contributor and I used my own father as a front man to get into the Bush circle. And I guess I do what other journalists do when they do an investigative journalism you know like they’ll pretend they’re getting a job somewhere and then film when no one is looking. It was under the same circumstances. I told him I was a Republican journalist down in Houston doing work and basically kinda befriended him over the phone, over the course of a few weeks. So we had a different kind of relationship. It wasn’t official but I got the assumption that this stuff was off the record.

    AMY GOODMAN: And now you’re naming names?

    J. H. HATFIELD: Well I just felt after this whole fiasco over the summer of '99 and the fall with him and these denials, nondenials , it's just ridiculous. Here I have Bush’s Chief of staff telling me this stuff and it was never a yes or no answer to the question. And I thought it was just getting ridiculous after a while and I felt the story just needed to be told.

    AMY GOODMAN: What is Dannenhauer now saying, is he denying that he spoke to you?

    J. H. HATFIELD: He originally did when he talked to some reporters, and the story keeps changing. It’s like a revolving door with Dannenhauer. it seems like he changes his story to fit the question of the interviewer. He’s not doing interviews now either. He 's buried himself — he's not… I don’t know if 60 minutes contacted him or not. You know as soon as reporters started calling him he was immediately removed and sent down to the library to stack books.

    AMY GOODMAN: I did see a photograph of you and him as you were coming out or going into the office.

    J. H. HATFIELD: Going into the restaurant. Going into a restaurant in downtown Mexican restaurant in Houston.

    AMY GOODMAN: Toby Rogers writes the introduction to “Fortunate Son: George W. Bush And The Making Of An American President,” which is written by J.H. Hatfield. Why do think the drug question is an important one and why do think George Bush has gotten away with not answering it? I mean he has answered questions about fidelity. He said he was always faithful to his wife.

    J. H. HATFIELD:Yeah, and that’s the paradox here because he says that I’ve always been faithful to my wife though nobody asks him about it. He admits to his drinking even though he doesn’t say he was an alcoholic, though everybody who knows him says he was an alcoholic. But when it comes to the drug issue he won’t talk about it. He kinda got into a little trap here last year, the Dallas morning news of all papers kinda backed him into a corner about doing background checks if he got to be president and then before you know it, he finally had the slam on the brakes and said I’m not discussing drugs past 1974. Now you know why because what we alleged with the community service thing happened in 1972. And he’s never outright denied this like Toby was saying. He’s called it ridiculous, he’s called it science fiction, that’s Clintonian. Just come out and say. If somebody has made that accusation about me, cause I’ve seen him to many times when he’s mad on television, pointing that finger. I would point that finger and say I absolutely deny what they say in that book. But he won’t do it. Now his father true enough got on FOX news channel and did an exclusive and he said it was a vicious lie. But what is the vicious lie? That also sounds Clintonian that he was arrested , that his record was expunged , that the elder Bush got him out, what is the lie? The American press is giving him a cake-walk on this thing. And it’s not because of the drugs that’s not the issue here. All the other candidates have discussed drugs and whether they used it or not. The problem here is the obstruction of justice. It’s a privileged young man being bailed out of jail and now is governor of Texas. He’s personally changed the laws — in the past where you had possession of certain drugs you got probation and he’s personally changed those laws where you got prison times so there’s hypocrisy there and that bothers people. 28:50

    AMY GOODMAN: Now can you go back to the point where you were referring to a comment George W. Bush made about exactly how far back he could go in his history.

    J. H. HATFIELD:You mean the whole story? Yeah, the Dallas Morning News said that when the FBI does the background checks on cabinet positions and everybody else, would you subject yourself to the same thing? And he said he would. And then they termed how long those are and finally David Bloom from NBC said “Well governor here’s the deal. It’s really for life here so how far back would you go? And he says well I can go back as far as like 1974 —-he didn’t say 1974 you’d had to do your math but it actually come up to he said during his father’s campaign or something like that. Well the press finally did the math and said 1974.

    AMY GOODMAN: He said that he could go back in his memory 25 years?

    J. H. HATFIELD:yeah something like that to that effect and that’s where he slammed on the brakes. And he said from here on I’m not discussing drugs anymore. If the American people don’t like my answer they don’t have to vote for me. So why not go past 1974? Throw it on the table and discuss it. Like me, I’ve put everything on the table now and he wants to say he was young and irresponsible — I’m not even running for President and I’m talking about my past. Why does the presidential frontrunner and I’m not sure he’s the frontrunner now, but why don’t he talk about his past? And there’s been lots of books too that have been written that were just pure junk, pure fabrications about Clinton and they were never pulled off the shelves, they were never recalled and I can cite one by Aldridge I mean just about every reviewer in this country said it was horse hockey, but they pulled mine because there was a lot of pressure to do it.

    AMY GOODMAN: What kind of pressure?

    J. H. HATFIELD:It was censored. It was censored, plain and simple and we don’t do that in this country. We don’t censor people because they wanna talk about the truth. When I was doing promotions for the book originally, the publicist at St. Martin’s told me that the reason we would get any publicity—-everybody was backing away, the AP didn’t even wanna carry it over the wire services. The book was coming out and made allegations. They weren’t telling the story they were just alleging what was in the book. AP wouldn’t cover it. So the publicist said “Jim here’s the problem, the Bush people are going around to everybody and saying “if you even report anything on this book, when we get to the White House,” not if we get to the White House, “when we get to the White House, you’re gonna find your butt sitting outside on a folding chair outside the press room and somebody else is gonna get the story. And it sure appeared that way. Because I’ll tell you we didn’t get any press coverage that week. The press coverage we got is because everything came out on me and then all of a sudden we got a controversy. I got em their press.

    AMY GOODMAN: And ultimately the book was pulled. St. Martin’s Press pulled the book and the publisher, the head of St. Martin’s Press resigned.

    J. H. HATFIELD:I think his title was editor-in-chief

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