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December 22, 2016
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May 11, 2012
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February 22, 1976
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ST"T Declassified in Part - Sanitized Copy Approved for Release 2012/05/11: CIA-RDP99-00418ROO0100100009-2 WHERE IS. THE T R U ? 22 FEBRUARY 1976 portant as the OSS concentrated on trying to create guer- rilla movements in occupied territory. When the CIA was formed ? in 1947, the operatives-most of whom had served in OSS-quickly got control of the agency, and L.ICJ U0.. G 116.U V,. U,l_. al?... "Over, the, years, - the CIA has, of course, greatly ad- vanced the arts of espionage, counterespionage and covert action. But it has been covert action-interference in an- other country's internal affairs-which has been title most . highly developed ... partly because the operatives who .'WASHINGTON-Is-the CIA, as its . :. at the strategic impact 'supporters; contend, a well-controlled many years," he said. agency dedicated' to, advancing' the A sample of Colby's perspective: cause of freedom eieryc hens? "The Bay of. Pigs obviously was a Or:Is' it: as its :critics contend, a disaster, but take yourself back to reckless roguetrampling into forbid- the early '60s when we were con den '`fields, ., making - ' America : the corned that the Cuban revolution bogey man of the' world? `?Where.does the truth lie? would: spread like wildfire through Latin America.' "That was the day of Che Guevara, winter, morning outside his living 'would turn the whole continent has- room window ard,like a spy in from tile -to the United States-there was the cold, talked wistfully of what: a serious assessment that this was a ttiight have beer.:,; ? possibility. "I had sort of hoped;' he said "that "So we Put. together, a program these skeletons might remain in the which . was a political. . program family closet." through the OAS (Organization of They. hadn't: One by one, slowly; AmericanStates) 4 an economic pro- -They, :Central Intelligence Agen- -rrogress. cy's closet during Colby's three years as director :. ' "There. was some military aid, and .'Assassination .plots Burglaries_ there was some CIA work both in in- :Mail openings. Domestic surveillance., telligence and in support of some of Secret armies. Undercover cash ' for-," the forces to prevent the rise in ter- .1 foreign politicans. Covert attempts'to. rorism and guerrilla activity. ; . overthrow other governments "At the end of' he period, in 1975, it Latin America is--no garden, but l hash t been turned totally hosti e to ;;ZML.imonth; revelation's ended -. -_1 r._.-_ the e .,-..,, ,--? - - the CIA. He had little to do with ershrp ? most oftlio.misdeeds, but he-displays "You can't say : it was the CIA 1no visible?b,"iferness about his ouster. . alone, but the CIA, f think, made a i. Turning, from th& window to lean ? contribution in a number of countries. back ;.on':a gold coloredsofa,. Colby. Its been worthwhile. argued in.quiettones that the CIA's ---=; . sing, ;were paraded before 'an.Ameri . Across the Potomac, in another can;public;ill-prepared for the disclo- Washington suburb, another spy in slues because it, had "no frame of re from the cold has already written a ~ference for intelligence,.except spy book giving his - perspective of the novels c,. agency's operations:,.Victor Marchet= So, , retired to a modest and un- ti, who, resigned-after'14 years as a, guarded suburban home, he' -is. writ- CIA: analyst and, executive;: co-au- Ing.arbook=trot-.a:py- novel; but, a .thored,"The CIA andxthe-Cdlt of In-' "serious book 1 he hopes will place , the telligence'; .agency's operatons: in .nistoricaIper-' 'Phis is his historical perspcct vc: u ti specvc much of the debate :.rating Too, -around the agency, he said, has cen-, ?:-Aered on."diddly-little things" such as ?a :"minuscule . number". of burglaries- committed in the: United States by, ?.C'IA operatives tion and counterespionage. ? Espion- 1 '; Iristead:?the debate shouId stake a' age, or spying, was relatively unim- broader view, "looking at the sweep' .. The real CIA_'is clandestine organization, as it has been from the very beginning. If one looks at the ,CIA's predecessor, the wartime Office of;Strategic Services, one finds that .. its primary activities were covert ac- ran the agency were not very interested in espionage. "These men. preferred. causing events to happen in foreign countries, whether 'destabilizing leftist govern- ments in Chile, Guatemala and Iran,' or secretly strong- + thening repressive regimes in Vietnam,. Brazil and the 1 Dominican Republic . What the CIA's operatives really like to do is play'the game of nations' .. " ? .Whom to believe? . In an attempt to answer that question, The Times inter- viewed friends and foes of the CIA, reviewed the findings Ti of investigating congressional committees and examined government documents dating back three decades. The result was a bundle of contradictions: -The CIA has, in fact, committed some colossal blun- ders, .damaging both U.S. policy and America's image abroad.: -Yet the agency has silently. scored some long-term triumphs,; helping build a foundation for today's uneasy '.detente. -The CIA has strayed far from the limited charter en-' visioned by its founders, secretly expanding its scope of operations without precise legislative authority. -Yet the, agency has been responsive, perhaps too re- .sponsive, to the desires of its presidential overseers. ?' -The CIA has at times been plagued by waste and bureaucratic 'bumbling, spending millions of dollars on questionable projects. . -Yet the agency's staff includes the world's foremost 'experts in fields from architecture to zoology, a quiet corps sincerely dedicated to furthering America's interests. -The CIA is such a mass of contradictions that it is lit- tle wonder that pollster Louis Harris last month found "much doubt and confusion among the American people". questioned about recent intelligence revelations.. "On the one hand, it is clear that the public nozlonger 'trusts the-CIA and FBI to operate on. their own, foi? fear that they. will 'engage in excesses of the kind that have been revealed,' Harris reported. "On the other hand, peo- ple are. aware that the two agencies need to conduct their -activities in:a.reasonable amount of secrecy. ".Somehow,' ,He observed, "the contradiction will have ' I to be worhed'out'f ~l3i t how ,