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December 22, 2016
Document Release Date: 
February 22, 2011
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May 3, 1982
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Vanishing Act by a P?pNi r 'pock Bobby Inman leaves the CIA, claiming the reasons are personal "embers of Congress serving on corn- gence Agency, 1976 to 1977; director of MW3mittees that keep an eye on the CIA . the National Security Agency, 1977 to have long faced a tricky challenge. Short 1981. of employing truth serum or lie detectors, As head of the NSA, a supersecret how can they know when officials of an agency that uses satellites, sophisticated agency;trained in the art of deception are monitoring techniques and more employ- dissembling? One such CIA. watcher , on ees (more than 20,000) than the CIA (some the House Intelligence Committee swears .16,000) to gather intelligence informa- he discovered an infallible method. . lion, Inman developed considerable rap- Whenever CIA Director William. Casey port 'with congressional committees. was testifying in secret meetings, the Con- When President Reagan was looking for a gressman watched the feet of Casey's dep- CIA chief in late 1980, Inman uty, Admiral Bobby Inman; If the admi- was pushed hard by diverse ral shuffled his feet or reached. down. to Capitol Hill backers, most pull up his socks, the Congressman con- . notably. Republican Senator cluded that Inman knew that his boss was Barry Goldwater. Instead, shading the facts. Sure enough, when Reagan picked.. Casey, who ,questioned, the admiral would delicately had,been his campaign direc- . correct the director. . ' . . . tor.'A bit reluctantly, Inman If Inman's telltale fidgeting was sub- left NSA to become Casey's conscious rather than intentional, it was deputy. Reagan talked him one of his few professional imperfections.. into it,. he said, with "the invidious comparisons both unfair to Bill and embarrassing to me." . . Inman often clashed with the staff of Reagan's National Security Council, par- ticularly with former National Security Adviser Richard Allen. One quarrel was over an Executive order supported by the NSC that would have given the CIA broad authority to spy on U.S. citizens at home when they were linked to "significant for- eign intelligence" operations. Inman did not publicly object to this domestic CIA role, but he did oppose giving the CIA a free hand in the types of activities it could probe and the methods it could use. Largely because of his efforts, the order . was tightened to put clearer limits on what the CIA could do at home: More recently, Inman was said to have been upset by White House leaks that sought to buttress Administration policies in Central America and especial- ly by the contention that'the Soviet Union and Cuba were behind the trouble in Nicaragua and El Salvador. Although I Inman generally shared the Adminis- tration's thesis, he felt that its disclosures about U.S. surveillance of the re gion compromised CIA intelligence-gathering methods. ? At the White House, some presidential aides sus- pect that Inman's friction with Allen, who quit in Janu- ary after disclosure that he . had 'accepted gifts from a Japanese magazine, spilled over into hostility between Inman and Casey, since Ca- sey and Allen had long been allies..Inman concedes that the "air might have had a lit- intrigue, most high CIA officials. develop I've ever encountered." . CIA Director Casey more enemies than friends. But when the Why was Inman;.51, now . .- White House last week announced In- leaving the CIA? The admiral told TIME man's impending retirement, from both 'that he felt he had accomplished what he the CIA and the Navy, the praise for the had set out to do at the agency: "Get a four-star admiral was downright gushy. road map created for a long-range re- Democratic Congressman Edward P. Bo- building program all across the whole in- land, chairman of the House Intelligence telligence community." Having-done that, Committee, called Inman "the nation's he insisted, he was stepping down to build "finest professional intelligence officer.". a second career in private business, earn Democratic Senator Joseph Biden even enough money (he now gets $59,500) to called Inman "the single most competent put two teen-age sons. through college, man in the Federal Government.- and spend more time with his family. Ad- Inman's bipartisan popularity stems' mitting that his career" had involved largely from his straight talk and incisive `.`wretched work habits and hours,"- In- mind. His virtually photographic memory ' man said his eldest son had asked last and workaholic habits pushed him to the Christmas: "Where's the quality of life in top of a career in military intelligence: di- all -:this?"' That, said Inman. was _"a III [LI I I Sanitized Copy Approved for Release 2011/02/22 : CIA-RDP90-01208R000100150060-1 tle strain: in it" when- Casey was being investigated and Inman was seen as a successor, but he insisted, "The personal working relationship has been very easy from the start." . Beyond that, said the admiral, "all the stories that are running around about ma- jor policy differences and personality dis putes are just plain false." He contended' that he was involved only in the routine kind of conflicts that always go on in Gov- ernment and that they had nothing to do, with his resignation. Unfortunately, Bob- by Inman made that point in a telephone conversationrThere was no way to-deter- mine whether he was' hitching up his rectoz Sanitized Copy Approved for Release 2011/02/22 : CIA-RDP90-01208R000100150060-1