Ray McGovern: Truman’s True Warning on the CIA

Corruption, Government
Ray McGovern
Ray McGovern

Truman’s True Warning on the CIA

Ray McGovern

OpEdNews, 22 December 2013

Fifty years ago, exactly one month after John Kennedy was killed, the Washington Post published an op-ed titled “Limit CIA Role to Intelligence.” The first sentence of that op-ed on Dec. 22, 1963, read, “I think it has become necessary to take another look at the purpose and operations of our Central Intelligence Agency.”

It sounded like the intro to a bleat from some liberal professor or journalist. Not so. The writer was former President Harry S. Truman, who spearheaded the establishment of the CIA 66 years ago, right after World War II, to better coordinate U.S. intelligence gathering. But the spy agency had lurched off in what Truman thought were troubling directions.

Sadly, those concerns that Truman expressed in that op-ed — that he had inadvertently helped create a Frankenstein monster — are as valid today as they were 50 years ago, if not more so.

Truman began his article by underscoring “the original reason why I thought it necessary to organize this Agency … and what I expected it to do.” It would be “charged with the collection of all in telligence reports from every available source, and to have those reports reach me as President … without Department  ‘ treatment’ or interpretations.”

Truman then moved quickly to one of the main things bothering him. He wrote “the most important thing was to guard against the chance of intelligence being used to influence or to lead the President into unwise decisions.”

Read full article.

Phi Beta Iota: CIA has dishonored its motto, and lost its integrity. The same is true of the rest of the US secret intelligence community. We’ve had two kinds of unethical Directors of (Central) Intelligence — those who have lied to the President, and those who lie for the President.

See Also:

Intelligence Reform @ Phi Beta Iota

Mini-Me: NSA-RSA Debacle Gets Worse

References on Intelligence Reform