Miller Center

American Forum - The Eisenhower Presidency

Sander Vanocur
May 20, 1983 - December 13, 1901

Sander Vanocur
Sander Vanocur

Sander Vanocur, former White House correspondent for NBC and professor of communications at Duke, discusses the roles and relationships of the President, the National Security Advisor, and the Secretary of State. He starts by claiming that the success of the Secretary of State in influencing his colleagues depends greatly on the support of the President and goes on to mention several former Secretaries of State, ranging from the Roosevelt to the Reagan administration. Vanocur also mentions that the National Security Advisor is perceived as being equal to or even higher than the Secretary of State, though only recently has the latter regained its position. He focuses greatly on the Kennedy, Nixon, and Carter years, emphasizing the tenures of McGeorge Bundy, Henry Kissinger and Zbigniew Brzezinski. In the Q&A section, Vanocur discusses the level of celebrity the National Security Advisor currently has and what his role should really be, the media elite in Washington, the relationship between the president and the press, Secretary of State George Schultz, the president and foreign policy, and his desire to have longer-term goals in sight.

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