Document Type: 
Document Number (FOIA) /ESDN (CREST): 
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Original Classification: 
Document Page Count: 
Document Creation Date: 
November 17, 2016
Document Release Date: 
July 19, 2000
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Case Number: 
Publication Date: 
October 13, 1964
Content Type: 
PDF icon CIA-RDP83-00764R000300090020-9.pdf367.17 KB
Approved For Release00/08/08 fl1j8?R000300020-9 13 October. 1964 MEMORANDUM FOR: Chief, Historical Staff SUBJECT: Introductory Comments on Country-level Approach to the History of the Clan- destine Services 1. Preparation of the history of any segment of the organization or functions of the CS is at once a creative and a tedious job. The identification of. the stages or phases of our program as it parallels shifts in US policy, the vicissitudes of a. foreign government or the movement of key staff officersbecomes an intriguing exercise. To develop such a story; into a factual and fluid account is a stimulating challenge. One must surely be an inventor of no mean proportions to develop the means and create the tools to cope with the many aspects of each CS activity. In any sense of the word this would be a constructive task of real benefit to the Agency and in particular the offi- cers of the DD/P. 2. The Clandestine. Services have relied too heavily and too long on the word-of-mouth technique for passing along contributing experiences and valuable lessons learned. The shifting of priorities, with a build-up in one area while there is a balancing decrescendo elsewhere, carries with it a natural lag in the transfer of our ex- periences, if indeed the transfer occurs at all. Also the growth of the Clandestine Services, even with our present well-organized and numerous training courses, makes the informal and sporadic reporting on our activities an in- adequate method for reviewing the past and shaping the future fulfillment of our responsibilities. 3. Therefore it is incumbent upon us to apply more systematic procedures in recording that which is now un- documented or which is obscured by the transfers of our officers or the meandering shifts in their operational assignment. Between,'assignments each officer should pre- pare a brief paper, of not more than a few pages, covering the work which he has just left. This statement should CONFIDENTIAL Approved For Release 2000/08/08:: CIA-RDP83-00764R000300090020-9 'Approved For Release=X00/08/084JA$lI00030E020-9 include at least a general critique of his activities, non-Agency individuals with whom he worked (agents by cryptonym), effectiveness of his operations, unusual problems faced and how solved, accomplishments, and sub- ject, date and control number of studies, recommendations or "think pieces" of any type (other than intelligence and project reporting) which the officer has prepared. Critiques of this type would go a long way toward filling the enormous gaps in the pattern of experience within the Clandestine Services, which appear in the record. 4. Each country desk should maintain a project folder. Such a folder can provide invaluable continuity as well as catalog all operations previously attempted, with their purposes and the ultimate reasons for termina- tion. Active projects can always be found at the desk, but terminated projects are either not brought to the attention of new officers or if informally discussed are usually not recalled from the document center for careful review. The project outline, project approval and project termination, an outline of major changes -- policy, pur- pose, substance and support -- if such pertain, and a listing of agent assets involved in the project should compose the packet of five to ten pages on each project. The only analyticalieffort would be in preparing the out- line of major changes. It is conceived that this might be prepared most efficiently by the headquarters case officer, after the sign-off on the project termination, when he forwards the project to the officer responsible for its release to the document center. The desk's master project folder should hold a running list of all projects with purpose, date of approval, primary or sub- projects, and date of termination (when terminated). 5. We should know what officers have been respon- sible for or assisted in carrying out our program at any period in history and in any part of the world. The DD/P desk should systematically maintain a chronological set of all approved tables of organization, and personnel assigned to that desk and the country supported. Today it would be impossible, without the examination of thou- sands of 201 folders, to definitively list those officers who have served the Agency in Greece, Vietnam, Italy or any other country. ;When it becomes necessary for us to call for such information in order to quickly compose a specialized task force to cover an emergency situation CON iDGN 1 IAL Approved For Release 2000/08/08:: CIA-RDP83-00764R000300090020-9 Approved For Release 2400/08/08 U 14 wit00300QW020-9 our files are found wanting. (Payroll records, with name and field allotment only, are not in any geographical order and are filed under covering vouchers which would have to be individually identified after tracking down the covering field dispatch. These payroll records, if they could be located pay period by pay period, would have to be manually, reviewed and extracted. They do not carry the grade or position of the individual. The Central Processing lists, at -irregular intervals, carry name, grade, country o tiestin ition, general job title (ops officer), career ;!signat:ion, and ETA. These only go back to 1959 in the Master File in Central Processing.) 6. It can be been that with a minimum of effort the individual desks can plug many of the'present holes. This action should make possible the orderly review and proces- sing of parts and eventually a full round-up of our activi- ties in a particular country. Special studies and reviews of unique and isolated segments of our program are of value and should belocated and brought together by the officer on the branch or desk who has the task of assem- bling the historical material for the country. 7. Steps will have to be taken which will permit a more orderly resurrection and use of our archival material. Against taking such 'steps it may be argued that: a. "Maintenance of post facto records and copies of reports which have long since served their pur- pose takes too much time and borders on wastefulness." Actually this consolidation of such information builds a continuity at the desk level and saves a tremendous amount of. time for new officers -- station chiefs and desk chiefs on down -- who are attempting to get read into their new responsibilities. Also there is a satisfaction in the thoroughness which is reflected in records thus assembled and systematized; ail of this actually saves time and builds confidence in our officer corps. b. "These new responsibilities will place an additional and unwarranted workload on the desks." The largest effort, namely that of summarizing terminated projects, will be spread rather thinly across the desks of all headquarters case officers, probably averaging only four or five per year per officer. These men who have the greatest knowledge of project activities are CONFIDENT JAL Approved For Release 2000/08/08 CIA-RDP83-00764R000300090020-9 Approved For Release P00/08/080 01 H- R00030W020-9 best qualified for this task. The only other new obliga- tion which this system would b -ing is the preparation of the personal critiques Dn the o') just left. Since these will be prepared betwe(i -.)ssig