After nearly 4 decades of silence, the world's most famous anonymous tipster stands revealed. The man referred to as "Deep Throat," the confidential informant who helped Woodward & Bernstein blow the lid off of Watergate, turns out to be Mark Felt, former second-in-command of the FBI. And now, with one of the great mysteries of modern American history solved at last, I can't help but feel, well... a little underwhelmed, truthfully.
Don't get me wrong - I'm sure that Felt's story and the truth behind his motivations will be fascinating, and that it will provide fodder for endless debates, books, television shows and films for years to come. And the fact that Deep Throat was, in fact, someone so high up in the security food chain is pretty astounding. It's just that before tonight, I had never heard of the guy. And I was the type of kid who paid really close attention in history classes, too. Dean, Ehrlichman, Haldeman, Liddy, Haig, Kissinger... I know them. Felt, not so much.
Like most people, I always assumed good ol' DT was one of those guys (okay, probably not Liddy), and perhaps always really hoped that it was one of the oddball candidates, like Pat Buchanan (then a Nixon speech writer) or Diane Sawyer (a White House press assistant at the time). And I thought it would be incredibly funny if it turned out that this Deep Throat turned out to be the actual Deep Throat, Linda Lovelace. Not bloody likely, sure, but you have to admit, it would've made a great story.
Still, I think this is pretty exciting news. I know that Woodward promised to reveal all one day, but I always kind of figured something would happen to prevent that, and the true identity of Deep Throat would remain one of the Great Unanswered Questions of the 20th Century, like "Who really killed JFK?" or "Who is Carly Simon's 'You're So Vain' really about?" It's truly great to finally know the answer, but I always expected my response would've been "Wow," not "Huh."