The Pentagon Papers

By: Jack, Bella, Mya

The Pentagon Papers were documents that contained information on the United States’ role in Indochina, most importantly Vietnam from around 1945 to the late 60s. These papers were very confidential until a research associate at MIT by the name of Daniel Ellsberg had turned them over to The New York Times giving the public access to the information.

The ethical dilemma that arises here is should Ellsberg have released these papers knowing that the Government would be more than against it. On one hand many would feel that it is important that the American people know the truth on what their country is doing in the war while on the other hand many would look at whether it was ethical of not only Ellsberg but also the media companies to publish these confidential papers.

The Nixon administration had placed an injunction stopping the publication of the papers had had even charged Ellsberg using the Espionage Act which prohibited interfering with military operations or foreign relations. These charges were thrown out in court which in turn opened new doors for more journalistic freedoms.

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