“The General’s records suggest he was in Washington that day and played tennis at 6:45 p.m.” (Politico)

Ben Carson’s campaign has been derailed by an explosive story in Politico that casts doubt on his claim of having a private dinner with four star General William Westmoreland on February 14th, 1969. This would be impossible since Westmoreland was on a tennis date that evening.

Military scheduling records and the audio context of the call have been recovered and provide context. The information in this phone conversation will likely change the outcome of the Presidential Republican Primary and is another reason why archiving historical conversations through (shameless plug!) the Audio History Collective is so critical.

Washington DC
Audiolog Archive # 1432
21:05, Feb 7 1969

Phone call transcript begin audio file 0:00:00

General Westmoreland (GW): “Hello, this is General Westmoreland.”

General Lawrence Fitzgerald (LF): “Hi Bill, it’s Larry.”

GW: “Hello.”

LF: “How are you?”

GW: “Good. What can I help you with? I have a call with Peter Sanberg in a few minutes.”

LF: “(redacted)..would you like to play tennis with me next Thursday night around dinnertime?”

GW: “Hell yes, I would”

LF: “OK.”

GW: “OK. Well I guess then, ah, if that’s, if that’s all then I’ll see you then.”

LF: “OK. Wait a minute…”

GW: “What?”

LF: “Meet me near the palm tree out there.”

GW: “I know.”

LF: “Where we played last time, see and then and then (illegible)”

GW: “Yes.”

LF: “How many sets.”

GW: “I’d like to play three.”

LF: “Are you getting dinner first?”

GW: “I think so. The place over here (illegible) will be closed, so I might have one of my guys grab a hamburger at McDonalds and eat on the way. Listen, I’ve got to go.”

LF: “Goodbye, General.”

END CALL

Phone call transcript end audio file 0:00:52.

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