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The New Abnormal

What You Don’t Know About the FBI Director Who Targeted MLK

Season 1, Ep. 270

Attention political history buffs: This episode of The New Abnormal podcast takes us back in time, to the ’50s and ’60s to be exact, as Beverly Gage, author of “G-Man: J. Edgar Hoover and the Making of the American Century,” tells co-host Andy Levy all about the background of the first-ever FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover. Andy learns that racist Hoover, infamous for going after Martin Luther King Jr. and committing multiple abuses of power across the board, particularly under the protection of the surveillance program COINTELPRO, didn’t like the Klan and had an interesting relationship with former President Richard Nixon. Author Kal Raustiala also joins the show to tell Andy about his book “The Absolutely Indispensable Man: Ralph Bunche, the United Nations, and the Fight to End Empire” and everything we didn’t know about the famous Black United Nations mediator—including the fact that Nixon told him his son was going to be drafted, and the reason he didn’t stop it from happening.

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