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Document Number (FOIA) /ESDN (CREST): 
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Document Creation Date: 
December 22, 2016
Document Release Date: 
November 21, 2012
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Publication Date: 
September 30, 1974
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Declassified in Part - Sanitized Copy Approved for Release 2012/11/21: CIA-RDP99-00418R000100100047-0 3 0 SEP 197, Director Colby on the Record The degree of our involvement in co- j Should the operational side of the In a rare on-the-record interview vert activities reflects the kind of world CIA be separated from intelligence with TIME Correspondent Strobe Tal- we live in. If it's a world where two su- gathering? bott, Director William Colby defended perpowers are peering over the fence at the CIA against its critics, ranged over each other, then it's a matter of con- That proposal stems from the Bay the current functions of the agency, and cem when a hostile political group is of Pigs. The problem there was that we discussed future prospects. Highlights: about to take over a country. But if it's didn't let the analysts in on the act. Now a world in which we've worked out a re- senior levels of the analyst community Why does the CIA intervene in oth- lationship of reasonable restraint, or are aware of covert activities and have er nations' internal affairs? detente, with the other superpowers, a chance to comment. In the early years then it won't matter to us who runs one of the agency, we tried conducting in- I'm not saying we're engaged in a of these countries in a far-flung area. telligence and action operations through campaign to bring democracy to the Of course, something very close to us two separate units, but they kept get world. That's not what the U.S. Gov- might still be important for political or 'zing in each other's way. ernment expects from this agency. security reasons. There may still be cer- WVe're expected to carry out U.S. pal- tain situations where U.S. interests What alternatives to covert opera-i icy. Over the years, we've helped dem- _and I don't mean corporate intereststions are possible for the CIA? ocratic forces rather broadly. In those but fundamental political interests-can cases where we have got involved with be adversely affected. In some of those: We could not-and did not-con- military regimes, we did so because there a greater danger from some place cases it would be appropriate to take duct the SALT negotiations and reach a was was we've toppled some modest action such as establishing SALT agreement until after our intelli- lse. I don't think and we e ted d em- - a relationship with somebody who needs ;gene techniques had improved to the ocratic regimes, don't think didn't bring the help. But I stress: it's not now our degree that we could tell whether the So- did s st in n Chile. and ed,idn Allen- Government's policy to engage in these viets were going to abide by the agree- about th coup, and First, seco e was not and second, ,the Alen- situations around the world. have ments. On a number of occasions' we democratic, Granted the military regime is not democratic, identified a situation that was get- or be- the think a Communist is not regime a , How is a covert operation started? ting very sour in some country democratic. tween two countries. By reporting the , Our program in Chile ile was to sus- We follow the traffic with the em- facts and our assessment, we generated tain the democratic bassy. We follow the political attitudes diplomatic action so that the trouble we ; which were against s the e that we have toward that country. We predicted did not happen. For instance A , Allende political forces, forces various ecific sugge e r s radio s in in of what we think would be national down, but because of our intelligence, a [ions, harassw some parts of the press policy. We don't do anything without negotiations saved the situation. and some political groups. We looked approval. In the future this sort of intelligence forward to the democratic forces cam- Sometimes we get the specific sug- will help our country in negotiations and ing to power in the elections of 1976. gestion from the outside-from an am- diplomatic relationships. As a result, we bassador, from the State Department or will be less likely to get into screaming To what extent had Communist from the National Security Council staff, crises, and there will be less need for co- forces intervened in Chile? They'll say: "Why don't you guys do so vert action. It will be the increasing re- and so?" We have the technicians here sponsibility of the CIA to give our lead- Castro spent about a month down who decide what is possible and what is ers the knowledge necessary to move there in the late spring of 1973. There not. It's the same sort of thing you get into a dire situation and defuse it. were a lot of extremist exiles in Chile with military activity. How you land from other countries in Latin America. troops on a hostile shore is not devel- There was a lot of assistance going into oped in the White House. The Joint Chile from Cuba and other Communist Chiefs develop a proposal. Then if the sources. There are indications that there White House approves it, you go ahead. was some Soviet activity. They were put- . But I want to emphasize that we're ting some money in, as well as hard- talking about a very small number of co- ware of various sorts. This was a pro- vert actions. Policy is generated at the gram to support not here. grpport an eventual takeover in what I would call a nondemocratic What would you regard as a suc- fashion-suppressing the opposition and cessful covert action? extending Communist influence else where in the hemisphere. ~~. It was considered important Will the CIA continue to mount co- to the U.S. that a country remain friend- ly and not be taken over by hostile forc- The C7A has three major functions:' es. Rather than use our military force science and ha eil work, scoly- or an enormous political effort, you try po- sis, and the clandestine collection of in- to influence some key people and key ost telligence. Now there's been a fourth re- litical groups. The Laos operation cost s nsibilit and that is substantial amounts but was cheap com- Po Y, positively pared with other ways of doing business. influencing a situation through political We were not involved in the 1967 coup or paramilitary means. That's the one i ._ ..1 , , n the Declassified in Part - Sanitized Copy Approved for Release 2012/11/21: CIA-RDP99-00418R000100100047-0