John Lennon had not been best friends with those in Washington D.C. Ever since he released his song “Give Peace a Chance” in 1969, an anti-war anthem, John was on the FBI watch list. President Nixon made John’s life miserable for the next three years as he struggled to get the musician exiled from the country.
However, new developments in the story have just emerged, proving that another musician could have helped Nixon in his fight against John alongside Elvis Presley. Elvis once told Nixon that the Beatles were “anti-American”. But is this proof enough that Nixon made him a spy?
John Lennon and President Nixon feud
Towards the end of his days as a Beatle, John conveyed his thoughts about the Vietnam War and other global issues. Songs like “Revolution” and “Come Together” sent a clear message. However, John was free to pen all the anti-war songs when The Beatles left.
Straight out of the Beatles, he wrote “Give Peace a Chance”, which culminated in anti-war demonstrations and protests. After that President Nixon and the FBI began to watch him closely. The protest songs and songs of peace did not stop. John released to imagine in 1971, and the Titanic track became almost as big as “Give Peace a Chance”.
When the FBI sentenced poet, activist and MC5 manager John Sinclair to 10 years for possession of two couples of marijuana, John wrote a protest song in Sinclair’s name in 1972. He performed the song at a rally, and FBI agents were in the audience.
The song didn’t help John. This angered Nixon even more. The President placed him under surveillance, tracked his every move, and began a silent fight to get John deported. If John could influence the newly-appointed 18-year-olds in the country who were about to vote in Nixon’s re-election, John had to go. He was a threat.
Nixon was reelected, yet the case against John raged, even as the ex-Beatle began to reduce his activism out of fear that he would be deported. However, when Nixon later resigned in 1974, John’s fight with Washington DC came to an end. John got a green card in 1976.
President Nixon may have asked Elvis Presley to spy on John Lennon
New report by presenter Bob Harris claims President Nixon allegedly asked Elvis Presley to spy on John. Harris recently shared his story during his appearance on the Rockantears podcast (via) Independent)
“It looked like it was almost a fantasy” [Lennon’s] Imagine when he was saying, ‘My phone is tapped, I am followed everywhere,’ but it was true. He really did,” Harris said. “Nixon was out to get him and so John was stuck in New York, or stuck in the States: he knew, were he to come back to the UK, he would never come back to the US again. Not when Nixon was in the White House. Were.”
As for Elvis’ involvement, Harris said, “Nixon was a great friend of Elvis and vice versa. Nixon was [asked] Elvis to gather as much information as possible about John Lennon. Harris continued to explain that, by that time, John and Elvis had had a hateful relationship with each other.
“For John, it was a very disillusioned moment because he loved Elvis’ records, so finding out he was a right-wing Southern fanatic was a huge blow,” Harris explained. “Equally, Elvis saw Lennon as this upstart Liverpudlian-know-it-all who took his crown. He grabbed Elvis and he was angry as hell.”
What Paul McCartney and John Lennon Considered ‘Doomed’ Elvis Presley in the ’50s
Harris’s Claims May Be Exaggerated
NS Guardian Claims that some of Harris’ statements are exaggerated. Nixon met Elvis at the White House at the time, but to say they were great friends might be a bit dramatic. At their meeting, Elvis was apparently trying to give Nixon a Federal Bureau of Narcotics badge. Notes taken at the meeting read that Elvis “thought the Beatles were a real force for anti-American sentiment.”
Another report stated, “His view that the Beatles laid the groundwork for many of the problems with youth with their filthy immaculate presence and suggestive music.”
Elvis didn’t want the badge, so he could have been Nixon’s watchdog. He wanted the badge for his own reasons. According to Priscilla Presley, Elvis may “legally enter any country wearing a gun and carrying any drugs” with the badge.
However, the conspiracy theory that Elvis faked his death does not help the theory that Elvis may have been a spy. Many believe he faked his death “for entering a witness protection program after helping the FBI infiltrate an organized crime syndicate”.
The only thing that leads us to believe that Elvis was a spy is evidence that he positioned himself around John at the time. For much of the 1970s, Elvis toured the other side of the country. Elvis has a messy relationship with Nixon, but that doesn’t necessarily lead us to believe they were into each other.