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Document Number (FOIA) /ESDN (CREST): 
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Document Creation Date: 
November 17, 2016
Document Release Date: 
July 19, 2000
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Publication Date: 
August 3, 1964
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PDF icon CIA-RDP83-00764R000300090015-5.pdf442.81 KB
sTm:r I Approved For Release.2000/08/08 !-CIA-RDP83-00764RD0030009001:51Ve 3 AUG 1964 liter 2. 25X1A potter Weems you Atnt e C4andeetine Services H4str1I e4 mob other step* 11* 084, be flOOOSSOrV to carry reoderaindetice in peregraeh 6 e0 Referees, (b). it your conversatice wtth or the tour people noted in mode eve' fable by the WW1 and will be flealbifit in the rode Di Ori bution: - addressee X- Mitstorical 2 - ODP 2 - COMP Approved For REtlesSek3900/08/05 11/ 25X1A (Suisd) Richrd Harms Aleherd smiles Deputy Dirtctor for Plans v 25X1A : CIA-RDP83-A4 90015-5 25X1A Approved For Release 200M .D _RAIP 83-00764R000300090015-5 SUBJECT FOR: C Historical Staff 21 May 1964 Ristory of the Clandestine Services, Preliminary Appraisal of the Problem (Part Two) RZFERENCE My Memorandum, Same Subject, Dated 14 May 1964 1. In the first of these related memoranda, I made two proposals which I consider a minimum response to Task 1-b of EN 1-46. This memorandUm will discuss ways in which a useful historical structure might be erected upon this groundwork. It is based upon the assumption that there is a valid require- ment for a Clandestine Services history adequate to fulfill the purpose described lit your note of 15 October 1963: "To consolidate a record of problems and solutions, failures and accomplishments which will put the past into historical perspective as background for the cur- rent direction of central intelligence and provide a reservoir from which particular requirements for his- torical material can be satisfied." That purpose, with which I agree will necessitate a good deal of thoughtful time-consuming voilt. 2. Within that framework, however, there is still need for somewhat more precise requirements in order to arrive at even a rough judgment of hoe much time and haw much work. Reliable gauges are hard to find. Most ordinary histories are pretty much beside the point. Massive institutional histories such as the combat records of the armed services would provide a model tar beyond the capabili4y,pf any past or present concept of a CIA Hi 4.?al 5taff:-"TW4 Darling effort for 1946-49 and that of-eirnmosir-and or 1950- 53 deal with quite a different quality of pro em oscause they are concerned almost entirely with the domestic and non-action components of the ageney; additionally each of thew, in its own way, has inadequacies for the purpose you have net forth. The ONS War Report and the present South Vietnam study are not directly comparable, either to each other or to the pres- ent problem, but they are more to the point. CONFIDENVAL Approved For Release 2000/08/08: CIA-RD -0 GROIN 1 Minded Trom automatic dow vradtpr and 90015-5 Approved For Releasa 2000/g/ONIVIAI .2. 3-00764R-000300090015-5 3. The OSS R.port cOvered a period of somewhat more than four years. It was begun in July* 1946 and submitted in fin- ished form 5 September 1047. During that time it engaged the services of seven officers, six researchers, six consultants and part-time writers, and two clerk-stenographers, consuming a total of roughly 20 person-years. When printed in 1949 it occupied 718 double-column pages, plus illustrations, exhibits and appendices. Yet it was admittedly incomplete and partly sketchy. 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 on the task force; it ens a job to do and be gotten over with. It benefited from the fact that memories 'ere fresh and the time span to be covered was relatively short. 4. The Vietnam study illumines from quite a different angle. Initially one experienced and more than usually artic- ulate officer, with part tine clerical assistance, was given eight months to complete an account of the agency's activities in Vietnam. 1950 was taken an the year of commencement, that being the time when the first OPC and 0130 (Clandestine Serv- ices) representatives were sent to Vietnam. The deadline was set to match that of a comparable State-Defense study. The job required poring through thousands of documents inter- viewing several hundreds of persons, many of than abroad, sorting and balancing 0,81010 of often conflicting material and ultimately will require, of course, the writing of the finished product. The impossibility of the task, with its Limitations as set, quickly became apparent; after two months one CS researcher was detailed almost full-time to assist the officer originally assigned. Later at the request of this officer the DDI assigned an assistant to assemble the con- tributive material from his offices, and another CS reseacher began working part time. As of this writing, the original deadline is 45 days away and the probable actual completion date at least four months more. Fortunately the State- Defense historians appear to be no better off. 3. It is clear that neither the OBS nor the Vietnam example, although pertinent, offers a solution to the over- all CS history problem. The task force approach would be organisationally dinruPtive and probably would not produce a satisfactory product. The Vietnam approach, applied to the rest of the world, would reach astronomdcal proportions. It seems to me equally clear that there is no rationality in expecting that a single person, whatever his experience and hgt0Approved For Release 2000/0 : k3-00764R000300090015-5 Approved For Release-2000/ 111E1M3-00764ROD0300090015-5 could produce anything that might honestly be des- "history" of the CS in your definition. What then short of resigning oneself to responsibility for a foresecably inadequate job? Perhaps something, given a will in the right places. S. I propose that such of the original drafting be done by selected officers of the several CS components, under the general guidance kilt not the direct jurisdiction of the Histori- cal Staff?topics to be chosen and draftsmen to be suggested by a small CS historical board which would have to meet no oftener than perhaps four times a year. 7. This proposal has a number of advantages, the most taut of which is that it stands some chance of getting ob done. In addition: a. It in flexible; it 'could provide both for the compilation over time of an accurate general history of the C$ and for more detailed appendices; it also 'would accommodate and make use of such special studies an might be requiredifrom time to time by DW and DCI; its scope and pace could be adjusted as circumstances re- quired. b. It would insure that each topic or area was treated by a person well qualified to deal with it; at the same time it should not unduly overburden any one draftsman. c. It would not be organizationally disruptive and 'mould 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 suggest hemselVes, 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. Approved For Release 20IMMIAltDP83-00764R000300090015-5 Approved For Release 2000/MEM83-00764R000300090015-5 ft. Finally, it would leave the responsible officer of the Historical Staff with a job which would be neither a sinecure nor a. ludicrous impossibility. Among his tasks; a. Preparation of an over-all historical outline and of proposals for consideration by the historical board; b. Editing, rewriting and rechecking first drafts as necessary and generally preparing theta for a place in a finished work; c. Writing intermediate chapters and other connec- tive or prefatory material to provide coherence to the finished work; personally preparing such other contri- butions as night not be better assigned elsewhere; 4. Interviewing such historical personages as Allen Dulles and Freak Wisner, e.g., for intimate insights unobtainable elseuhere; te. Dupery/slag the work of the research group recom- mended in reference and assuring that it supports, as well as possible, other work currently in progress while pursuing its longer goal of organizing true historical archives; f. Undertaking such evaluative functions as may be considered suitable for historical purposes; (there seems to have been considerable conflict and confusion as to whether this is an historical staff function and, if so, bow to go about it). 0. It must be emphasized that this proposal will work only if it has the clear, and unequivocal endorsement of DDP. 25X1A CONFIDENTIAL Approved For Release 2000/08/08 : CIA-RDP83-00764R000300090015-5