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I, Sy: Seymour Hersh’s Memoir of a Life Making the Mighty Sweat

I, Sy: Seymour Hersh’s Memoir of a Life Making the Mighty Sweat

During an interview in his cluttered office here, between the White House and the home he shares with his wife, a psychoanalyst, in the Cleveland Park neighborhood, Mr. Hersh seemed not much different from how Time magazine described him in 1975: “He is in turn talkative, churning, abrupt, zealous, egotistical and abrasively honest.”

In athletic shoes and a V-neck sweater, he bounced from topic to topic. He offered measured support for Gina Haspel, the new director of the C.I.A., and recalled the time he and Daniel Ellsberg, the Pentagon Papers leaker, watched “Platoon.” (Mr. Ellsberg cried, he said.) A framed photograph of Mr. Kissinger, the subject of one of his books, hangs above his desk; in it, Mr. Kissinger is stuffing his face with cake.

Mr. Hersh’s place in the pantheon of reporters is secure, but his current status is ambiguous. In arguably the most fertile moment for investigative reporting since Watergate, he has been on the sidelines. By choice, he said.

“I’m not going to write anything about the whole last two years,” he said. “The story’s fixed now. ‘Trump bad, Democrats good.’ It’s a fixed story. And, of course, it’s a little more muddled than that. A lot more muddled than that.” He added, “I doubt if I went to The Washington Post or The New York Times with a story, they’d run it. Doesn’t bother me.”

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