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November 17, 2016
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July 19, 2000
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May 21, 1964
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Approved For Release 21300/08/08C OIREFILUZU-DAILR0003000Q1013-7 MEWRANDUM FOR: Chief,Historical Staff SUDJECT ? 21 May 1904 HistorY of the Clnndestine Services, . Preliminary Appraisal of the Problem (Part Two) REFERENCE ? My Memorandum, Same Subject, Dated 14 Mafty 1064 1. In the first of these related memoranda, / made two proposals which I consider a minimum resnonse to Task 1-b of UN 1-46. This memorandun rill dieeues ways in which a useful historical structure might be erceel neen this groundwork. It is based unon the artumption .Clat there ina valid require- ment for a aandestine Servies ti -tory r,,:k,,,29to to fulfill the purpose described in yo ee not of 15 Cete":-e 1063: consolidatoHa record of problems end eeiutions, Sail-crcs and acconPlishments rhich will nut the past into historical perspective as bnckground for the cur- :c ne direction. of Central intollinence end provide a renervoir from rhiCh particuar requirements for his- torical material can be satieeified." That purpose, with which I necoszit&te a good deal of thoughtful, time-con6umin 2. Within that freenork, heeevor, there is still need for somewhat more preciai:e 27G71;ircclIts in order to arrive at even a rough judgment of hew much ti.re and how much work. neliable gauges are hard to find. Most ordinary histories ere pretty much beside the point. Maseive institutional histories such as the combat records of the armed services rould provide a model far beyond the canability of any rt 25X1A or pree,ent concept of a CIA Historical Staff 25X1A 52 deal with quite a different quality of }.!en became th,c,.3r 25X1A effort for 1946-49 and that of anl 25X1A or 11;50- arc concerned almost entirely with the domestic end nen-aetien components of the agency; additionally each of them, in itn own way, has inadequacies for the purpose you have set forth. The CS War Report and the present South Vietnam sty aro not directly comoarable, either to each other or to the pr -- ent problem, but they are mire to the point. / 4e CONFIDENTIA, roved For Release 2000/08/08 : CIA-RDP83-00? 00 it coo Excluded from aulemalle 3046N. o n !mar Approved For Release 246180/08/08 tajf-4-1gper1310119nik4e0003000410013-7 3. The OSS Report covered a period of somewhat more than four years. It was begun in July, 1946 and submitted in fin- led form 5 September 1947. During that time it engarned the services of seven officers, six researchers, six consultants anj part-time writers, and two clerk-stenographers, consuming a total of roughly 20 person-years. When printed in 1949 it occupied 718 double-coinmn pages, plus illustrations, exhibits anI appendices. Yet items admittedly incomplete and partly slcetchy. It suffered from the problem of coping with source- material which in some respects was nearly overwhelming in volume and in other respects inadequate or lacking. There was no sense of continuity or. the task force; it was a job to do end be gotten over with. It benefited from the fact that memories wore fresh and the time span to be covered was relatively- short. 4. The Vietnam study illumines from quite a different angle. Initially one esperienced and more than usually artic- ulate officer, with part time clerical assistance, wes given eight months to complete an account of the agency's activities In Vietnam. 1950 was taken as the wear of commencement, that 25X1C being the time when the !first (Clandestine Serv- ices) representatives were sent to Vietn. The deadline was sot to match that of a cemnerable Vtete-Defense study. The job required poring threueil thousnes of documents, inter- viewing several hundreds of persons, many of them abroad, sorting and balancing meesce of often conflicting material ved ultimately will reqUire, of course, the writing of the finished product. The ineeesibility of the tee, with its limitations as sot, quickly became apparent; after two months one CS researcher was detaileU almost full-time to resist the officer originally assigned. Later at the request of this officer the DDI assigned an assistant to aeeemble the con- tributive material from his offices, and another CS r-eacher began working part time. As of this writing, the original deadline is 45 days away and the prole actual completion date at least four months more. Fortunately the State- Defense historians appear to be no better off. 5. It is clear that neither the OS'S nor the Vietnam exemelo, although pertinent, offers a solution to the over- all CS history problem. :The task force approach would be organizationally disruptive end probably would not produce a satisfactory product. The Vietnam approach, applied to the reat of the world, would reach astronomical proportions. It seems to me equally clear that there is no rationality in epecting that a single person., whatever his esperienee and CONFIDENTIAL Approved For Release 2000/08/08 : CIA-RDP83-00764R000300090013-7 Approved For Releasea000/080,4 iirlA-R911041-41764R00030d#190013-7 bLit I 1AL OnIR talents, could produce anything that might honestly be des cribed as a "history" of the CS in your definition. What then might be done short of resigning oneself to responsibility for - a forosecably inadequate job? Perhaps something, given a will in the right places. 6. I propose that Much of the original drafting be done by selected officers of the several CS components, under the general guidance but not the direct jurisdiction of the Histori- cal Staff--topics* to be chosen and draftsmen to be suggested by a small CS historical ;b,t)ard which would have to meet no oftener than perhaps four times a year. 7. This proposal has a number of advantages, the most important of which is that it stands some chance of getting the job done. In addition: a. It is flexible; it would provide both for the compilation over time of an accurate general history of the CS and for more detailed appendices; it also would accommodate and make use of such special studies as might be required from time to time by DDP and DCI; its scope and pace could be adjusted as circumstances re- quired. b. It would ittsure that ch topic or area was treated by a person well qualifiel to deal with it; at the same time it should not unduly overburden any one draftsman. c. It would not be organizationally disruptive and would not expand the Historical Staff beyond the modest proposal of reference. d. It should provide the important elements of continuity and a sense of participation on the part of the CS components. In addition to country histories, any number of Subject his- tories owrgest themselves, including (in no order of import- ance): proprietary organizations, cover generally, relations with other agencies, especially military, State, FBI; defec- tors, emigrees generally, uses and problems of aircraft, foreign liaison., the records problem' labor activities, etc., etc., MtiFENTIAL Approved For Release 2000/081v : IA-RDP83-00764R000300090013-7 Approved For Release 2400/08/08 Gatifilaffirr00030004)013-7 -4- 8. Finally, it would leave the responsible officer of the Nistorical Staff with 4 job which would be neither a sinecure nor a ludicrous impossibility. tmong his tasks: a. Preparation of an over-all historical outline and of proposals for eoneideration by the historical board; b. Editing, rewriting and rechenkire first drafts as neceeenry and generally propering theta or a place in a finished work; c. Writing intersediate chapters and other connec- tive or prefatory material to provide coherence to the finished work; personally peeparing such other ceetri- leetions as might not be better assigned elsewhere; d. Interviewing sueh hiotorical personeees as !ellen Dulles and Frank. Wisner, e.g., for intimate ineights unobtainable e/sevihere; o. Supervising the work of the researc group reecee- reeded in reference ene assurine that it supports, vs eiell as possible, ?the': worL currently in progrees while suing its loner goal of organizing true historical archives; f. Undertaking such eveluative functions as may be . considered suitable for hisorical purposes; (there sees to have been consiOreble conflict and confusion as to whether this is an historical staff function and, if so, how to go about it). 0. It must be emphasized thrt this proposal will woe,: only if it has the clear and uneeeivecal endorsement of DDP. 25X1A CONELIENTIAL Approved For Release 2000/08/08 : CIA-RDP83-00764R000300090013-7