The CIA and the Media: How America's Most Powerful News Medi

Gathered together in one place, for easy access, an agglomeration of writings and images relevant to the Rapeutation phenomenon.

Re: The CIA and the Media: How America's Most Powerful News

Postby admin » Thu Mar 28, 2019 12:30 am

Purity in the Peace Corps
Excerpt from The Invisible Government
by David Wise and Thomas B. Ross



Purity in the Peace Corps

THE CONFLICT in the field between the ambassador and the intelligence operator is reflected on a larger scale in the frequent clashes in Washington between the State Department and the CIA. The uneasiness felt in other government agencies over the role of the CIA runs deeper than that, however.

This uneasiness is little known outside of the government, and it is almost never talked about. But the Peace Corps provides the best example.

During the 1960 campaign, John F. Kennedy had promised, if elected, to establish a Peace Corps. He kept his word, created the new agency by an executive order in March, 1961, and asked his brother-in-law, Sargent Shriver, Jr., to head it.

Shriver accepted, but he very quickly concluded that the Peace Corps, with its thousands of young volunteers dispersed over the globe, could well look like an all but irresistible "cover" to an intelligence agency always on the alert for new ways to disguise its people. At the same time, Shriver knew that the Peace Corps, because it would offer genuine help to the emerging nations of the world, would be an equally tempting target for Communist propaganda, which would seek at all costs to discredit it.

Therefore, Shriver privately proclaimed his determination to take every possible step to divorce the Peace Corps from even the faintest smell of intelligence work. He was well aware that even one "spy" incident involving a volunteer might destroy the Corps.

An anecdote that went the rounds of the executive suite of the Peace Corps at the time of its birth is revealing. It had the then Vice-President, Lyndon Johnson, advising Shriver to "beware the three C's -- Communism, Cuties, and the CIA."

In the spring of 1961 Shriver made a trip seeking to persuade neutral nations to accept Peace Corpsmen. He discovered that the leaders of those countries were blunt in asking whether he would let the Corps be used as a cover for intelligence agents. Shriver replied just as bluntly that he was doing everything he could within the government to make sure that the CIA stayed out of his agency. He also promised to assist individual countries in any security checks they might care to make.

As early as March 16, 1961, Radio Moscow was attacking the Peace Corps as a plan for "the collection of espionage information for Allen Dulles' agency." On May 11 Tass, the Soviet news agency, sent out a dispatch in English to Europe, headlined "Peace Corps Head Shriver CIA Agent."

As a first step in his campaign to prevent the Peace Corps from becoming tarred as an instrument of Cold War intelligence-gathering, Shriver went directly to President Kennedy. "Jack Kennedy gave me his promise," Shriver later told a friend, "that there would be no CIA agents in the Peace Corps."

Upon graduating in 1949, Coffin entered the Union Theological Seminary, where he remained for a year, until the outbreak of the Korean War reignited his interest in fighting against communism. He joined the CIA as a case officer in 1950 (his brother-in-law Franklin Lindsay had been head of the Office of Policy Coordination at the OSS, one of the predecessors of the CIA) spending three years in West Germany recruiting anti-Soviet Russian refugees and training them how to undermine Stalin's regime....

Approached by Sargent Shriver in 1961 to run the first training programs for the Peace Corps, Coffin took up the task and took a temporary leave from Yale, working to develop a rigorous training program modeled on Outward Bound and supervising the building of a training camp in Puerto Rico.
He used his pulpit as a platform for like-minded crusaders, hosting the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu, and Nelson Mandela, among others.

-- William Sloane Coffin, by Wikipedia

He began working for the Russian-language station Radio Liberty, which was based in Munich, at the height of the Cold War. He worked for the U.S. Information Service, which sent American citizen diplomats around the world to talk to people about American values and democracy....

Between 1964 and 1972, he served as deputy Peace Corps director in India, country director in Tunisia and Nigeria and finally as director of all Peace Corps programs in Africa.

-- Francis Underhill Macy - improved Russia relations, by Peter Fimrite

The most encouraging development is that the Ambassador has decided he wants two Olympic attaches -- the other one will be Dave Carrasco, former basketball coach at the American University and now head of the Peace Corps sports programme in Ecuador (who of course, has no connection whatsoever with the Agency).

-- Inside the Company: CIA Diary, by Philip Agee

Just as we were preparing a number of hard questions to ask Robert G. Deindorfer, came news of his death on March 26.

Though never exposed during his lifetime, Deindorfer was a spy for the CIA.

According to the New York Times, the 61-year-old author and public relations executive had been a reporter for the United Press and a manager of the New York Stock Exchange's magazine, newspaper feature and book department.

He had done public relations work for the City of New York, the Institute of Life Insurance, and the Foundation for Full Service Banks. At the time of his death he was with the Financial Service Group of Carl Byoir & Associates, an international public relations firm.

The Times left out a lot about Deindorfer, who also wrote under the names Jay Bender, Jay Dender, and Robert Greene. He had taught journalism at New York University and had served as a consultant to the Peace Corps.

He also had written several books on a variety of topics ranging from professional football and fishing to country life in England and espionage.

The New York Times didn't mention that Deindorfer was a member of the CIA's "old boy" network, although a hint of this has been on record for some time. In an introduction to the 1967 edition of Secret Service: Thirty-Three Centuries of Espionage, former CIA Director Allen Dulles wrote that Deindorfer was well qualified to complete the revision of Richard W. Rowan's book after that author's death because of his "accurate and objective sense of perspective."

Until recently, the precise measure of his accuracy and objectiveness lay hidden in CIA files, but a tiny portion was revealed in the uncensored fragment of the document released to Philip Agee under the Freedom of Information Act.

Deindorfer was a friend of Angus Thuermer, once a reporter for the Associated Press and later the CIA's press liaison. After the events described above, Thuermer orchestrated the media disinformation campaign against Agee and this magazine's predecessor, the old CounterSpy, falsely holding them responsible for the 1975 assassination of Richard Welch, the CIA's station chief in Athens. It may have been Thuermer himself who dispatched Deindorfer to spy on Agee while he was living in England in 1974.

-- Death Overtakes a Spy, by Ken Lawrence

President Kennedy followed up this verbal assurance to Shriver by issuing orders to Allen Dulles and later to his successor, John McCone, which continued in effect after President Johnson took office. In addition, Shriver met with Dulles and later with McCone and obtained their guarantee that the CIA would stay away from the Peace Corps.

But the problem was more subtle than that. Shriver's dilemma was a peculiar one, bred of the Cold War and inconceivable in the America of even twenty years before. Could he be certain that the White House attitude would be reflected all along the line? Could he be sure, for example, that a lower-echelon CIA official might not quietly attempt, despite everything, to plant agents in the Peace Corps, in the honest belief that he was acting in some higher national interest?

Shriver must have decided he could not be sure of the answers to these delicate questions, for he did not rely on presidential assurances alone. A careful screening process was set up. It was designed, of course, to catch any Communist or security risk who might try to get into the Peace Corps. But it was also designed -- hopefully -- to spot any CIA "volunteer" before he could unpack his cloak and dagger.

It might come as a jolt to most Americans to know that one agency of the United States Government feels it must protect itself against infiltration in its ranks by another agency of the United States Government. But the Peace Corps has taken elaborate steps to prevent just that.

Shriver designated William Delano, the Peace Corps' young general counsel, to ride herd on the problem and make sure no intelligence men slipped through the net. As insurance, Shriver laid down a firm rule. No one with any intelligence background, even years ago, would be accepted.

As Peace Corps officials soon discovered, there was a hitch. Openly acknowledged "overt" employees of the CIA are allowed to say so when they seek a new job. But covert employees of the CIA are not permitted to reveal it, even years later on a government job application form. They might put down the name of a commercial cover company or perhaps some other branch of the government for which they had ostensibly worked.

And a routine Civil Service check, Peace Corps officials realized, would not reveal whether applicants had been or were still covert CIA agents. Some applicants, unaware of Shriver's policy, innocently listed such past jobs as "CIA secretary, summer of 1951." They were immediately eliminated.

Others, more sophisticated, sought to fuzz their past employment by listing "U.S. Government" to cover a period of a year or two. But the would-be volunteers, in these cases, were questioned by Civil Service investigators, who naturally demanded to know more details.

One high Peace Corps official estimated that ten to twenty ex-CIA employees who had listed "U.S. Government" on their applications have been turned down since the Peace Corps began.

Screening out persons with a background in intelligence was only part of the problem. The Peace Corps also decided that it had to guard against the possibility of the CIA approaching a volunteer after he had been accepted into the Corps.

During orientation courses for volunteers, it became standard practice for a Peace Corps instructor to get up and pose the following question:

"Suppose a man asks you to have a cup of coffee with him and he identifies himself as a CIA agent. He says he doesn't want you to spy, but that he'd like you to get together with him and just chat every couple of weeks, and perhaps tell him a couple of things you've learned. What would be your reaction?"

Most of the volunteers replied they would have no part of any free-lance spying of this sort.

"Just so that no one will have any doubts about it," the instructor would then add, "if such a solicitation is made, you are to report it to the Peace Corps country representative within ten minutes, if you can get to him that quickly, because the CIA man would be defying the President's order to Dulles and McCone. Furthermore, the CIA man will be kicked out of the country faster than you can see, if you report it."

Because of this orientation, Peace Corps officials felt it was unlikely that their volunteers would be solicited to do any intelligence work. Still, one official admitted, the real problem would be "covert people trying to infiltrate. I don't see any way we can spot them. It would be a fluke. The more deliberate the attempt, the harder it would be to find."

Shriver's concern over keeping his agency "clean" was reinforced in September, 1961, when Secretary of the Army Elvis J. Stahr made a speech suggesting that an Army Peace Corps be established.

"We must plan so that we can use our tools in cold war as well as hot war and employ them anywhere in the world, " said Stahr. General Barksdale Hamlett, Army Deputy Chief of Staff, gave added details of the plan, which seemed to envision use of the Army in worthy social projects in underdeveloped countries -- but linked to paramilitary activities.

To Shriver, it smacked of precisely the sort of military and intelligence overtones he was trying so hard to avoid. Shriver objected strenuously. A high-level meeting was held at the Pentagon, attended by Stahr, Shriver, General Hamlett and a platoon of beribboned Army brass.

The generals at the meeting insisted that the Army Peace Corps would have no relation to any intelligence work. At that, Lee St. Lawrence, a Peace Corps official, spoke up. St. Lawrence had served with the Agency for International Development in Southeast Asia and was familiar with CIA operations in that part of the world.

He asked the generals to name the officers who would be in charge of the proposed "Army Peace Corps" in Southeast Asia. When they did, St. Lawrence singled out some as CIA men. He offered to reel off the names of others, but there was no need. The project was dropped.

But Communist attacks on Shriver and the Peace Corps continued. United States intelligence obtained, from Eastern Europe, what appeared to be a guide for satellite nations on how to phrase propaganda against the Peace Corps. The document stressed the general line that the Corps was a CIA operation and that volunteers were selected by the CIA. Peace Corps officials believed that it served as a primer for subsequent propaganda emanating from various points in the Communist world.

Certainly the Russian and Communist Chinese attacks followed a familiar pattern. In March, 1962, for example, Radio Moscow broadcast in Hindi to India: "U.S. agents are sent to Afro-Asian countries under the U.S. Peace Corps label. The plan to organize the corps was jointly prepared by the U.S. State Department, Pentagon and CIA. Director of the Corps, Shriver, is an old employee of the CIA."

Radio Peking joined in, and so did Fidel Castro. Radio Havana broadcast attacks on the Peace Corps that paralleled the Moscow barrage.

Also in Havana, the newspaper Roy warned Venezuela to "watch out" for the Peace Corps. "These Corps are land U-2s. Their mission consists in poking their noses into all places where meek rulers open the door for them."

On March 27, 1963, a Polish paper published an article attacking the Peace Corps by charging that girl volunteers were Mata Haris. It ran photographs of girls training, with the caption: "The Americans consider all means acceptable. Where other methods do not succeed, sex [i] may be very useful. Girl members of the Corps on the exercise field."

About the same time, Tass picked up the sex theme and charged that a wicked Peace Corps woman teacher in Somalia tried to teach pupils the "indecent movements" of the twist.

By the spring of 1963, United States analysts concluded that the Soviet Union, having had little success with this loud, public campaign against the Peace Corps, had embarked on a simultaneous behind-the-scenes campaign against the Corps. In Ghana, for example, the Soviet ambassador succeeded in persuading the government of President Kwame Nkrumah to impose some restrictions on the Peace Corps. And in May, 1963, the Ghanaian Times, regarded as the unofficial spokesman for Nkrumah, openly attacked the Corps as an alleged CIA tool.

There seemed no likelihood that the public attacks would stop, but their very intensity logically dictated that Shriver, more than ever, would want to keep the Peace Corps pristine. A spy incident involving a volunteer would give the Russians a propaganda field day and could possibly wreck the Peace Corps, and Shriver's political career as well.

The Peace Corps, it should be noted in fairness to the CIA, maintains it does not know of a single case in which it could be sure of an attempted infiltration by an intelligence agent seeking to use the Corps as cover.

But the fact that Shriver felt he had to take the astonishing precautions he did, speaks volumes. It reflects the atmosphere of mistrust that is felt, rightly or wrongly, by many overt officials of the United States Government toward their less visible colleagues. The distrust is not universal, however. Some unlikely departments of the government have become vehicles for secret operations of various shadings. The story of one of these begins in a house in Cuba.



i. Actually, the Peace Corps has rather strict rules about sex. "In-service marriages of single volunteers must have the prior approval of the Peace Corps representative in charge of the project," a Peace Corps booklet warns sternly. "Approval will not be granted when the future spouse has come from the U.S. or from some other country for the purpose of marrying a volunteer ... married couples who find they are to become parents must notify their Peace Corps representative as quickly as possible."
Site Admin
Posts: 36301
Joined: Thu Aug 01, 2013 5:21 am

Re: The CIA and the Media: How America's Most Powerful News

Postby admin » Thu Jun 04, 2020 2:20 am

Worldwide Propaganda Network Built by the C.I.A.
The following article is based on reporting by John M. Crewdson and Joseph B. Treaster. It was written by Mr. Crewdson.
The New York Times
Dec. 26, 1977

Not long after John Kenneth Galbraith, the Harvard economist, arrived in India in 1961 to take up his new post as American Ambassador, he became aware of a curious political journal called Quest that was floating around the Asian subcontinent.

“It had a level of intellectual and political competence that was sub‐zero,” Mr. Galbraith recalled in an interview. “It would make you yearn for the political sophistication of The National Enquirer.”

Though an English‐language publication, “it was only in some approximation to English,” he said. "The political damage it did was nothing compared to the literary damage.”

Then the new Ambassador discovered that Quest was being published with money from the Central Intelligence Agency. At his direction the C.I.A. closed it down.

Though perhaps less distinguished than most, Quest was one of dozens of English and foreign language publications around the world that have been owned, subsidized or influenced in some way by the C.I.A. over the past three decades.

Although the C.I.A. has employed dozens of American journalists working abroad, a three‐month inquiry by a team of reporters and researchers for The New York Times has determined that, with a few notable exceptions, they were not used by the agency to further its worldwide propaganda campaign.

In its persistent efforts to shape world opinion, the C.I.A. has been able to call upon a separate and far more extensive network of newspapers, news services, magazines, publishing houses, broadcasting stations and other entities over which it has at various times had some control.

A decade ago, when the agency's communications empire was at its peak, it embraced more than 500 news and public information organizations and individuals. According to one C.I.A. official, they ranged in importance “from Radio Free Europe to a third‐string guy in Quito who could get something in the local paper.”

Although the network was known officially as the “Propaganda Assets Inventory,” to those inside the C.I.A. it was “Wisner's Wurlitzer.” Frank G. Wisner, who is now dead, was the first chief of the agency's covert action staff.

Like the Mighty Wurlitzer

Almost at the push of a button, or so Mr. Wisner liked to think, the “Wurlitzer” became the means for orchestrating, in almost any language anywhere in the world, whatever tune the C.I.A. was in a mood to hear.

Much of the Wurlitzer is now dismantled. Disclosures in 1967 of some of the C.I.A.'s financial ties to academic, cultural and publishing organizations resulted in some cutbacks, and more recent disclosures of the agency's employment of American and foreign journalists have led to a phasing out of relationships with many of the individuals and news organizations overseas.

A smaller network of foreign journalists remains, and some undercover C.I.A. men may still roam the world, disguised as correspondents for obscure trade journals or business newsletters.

The C.I.A.'s propaganda operation was first headed by Tom Braden, who is now a syndicated columnist, and was run for many years by Cord Meyer Jr., a popular campus leader at Yale before he joined the C.I.A.

Mr. Braden said in an interview that he had never really been sure that “there was anybody in charge” of the operation and that “Frank Wisner kind of handled it off the top of his head.” Mr. Meyer declined to talk about the operation.

However, several other former C.I.A. officers said that, while the agency was wary of telling its American journalist-agents what to write, it never hesitated to manipulate the output of its foreign-based “assets.” Among those were a number of English‐language publications read regularly by American correspondents abroad and by reporters and editors in the United States.

Most of the former officers said they had been concerned about but helpless to avoid the potential “blow‐back"—the possibility that the C.I.A. propaganda filtered through these assets, some of it purposely misleading or downright false, might be picked up by American reporters overseas and included in their dispatches to their publications at home.

The thread that linked the C.I.A. and its propaganda assets was money, and the money frequently bought a measure of editorial control, often complete control. In some instances the C.I.A. simply created a newspaper or news service and paid the bills through a bogus corporation. In other instances, directly or indirectly, the agency supplied capital to an entrepreneur, or appeared at the right moment to bail out a financially troubled organization.

It gave them something to do,” one C.I.A. man said. “It's the old business of Parkinson's Law, a question of people having too much idle time and too much idle money. There were a whole lot of people who were underemployed.”

According to an agency official, the C.I.A. preferred where possible to put its money into an existing organization rather than found one of its own. “If a concern is a going concern,” the official said, “it's a better cover. The important thing is to have an editor or someone else who's receptive to your copy.”

Postwar Aid for Journals

The C.I.A., which evolved from the Office of Strategic Services of World War II, became involved in the mass communications field in the early postwar years, when agency officials became concerned that influential publications in ravaged Europe might succumb to the temptation of Communist money. Among the organizations subsidized in those early years, a C.I.A. source said, was the French journal Paris Match.

No one associated with Paris Match in that period could be reached for comment.

Recalling the concerns of those early days, one former C.I.A. man said that there was “hardly a left‐wing newspaper in Europe that wasn't financed directly from Moscow.” He went on: “We knew when the courier was coming, we knew how much money he was bringing.”

One of the C.I.A.'s first major ventures was broadcasting. Although long suspected, it was reported definitively only a few years ago that until 1971 the agency supported both Radio Free Europe, which continues, with private financing, to broadcast to the nations of Eastern Europe, and Radio Liberty, which is beamed at the Soviet Union itself.

The C.I.A.'s participation in those operations was shielded from public view by two front groups, the Free Europe Committee and the American Committee for Liberation, both of which also engaged in a variety of lesser‐known propaganda operations.

The American Committee for Liberation financed a Munich‐based group, the Institute for the Study of the U.S.S.R., a publishing and research house that, among other things, compiles the widely used reference volume “Who's Who in the U.S.S.R.”

Institute for the Study of the USSR (Інститут для вивчення СССР; Instytut dlia vyvchennia SSSR; German: Institute zur Erforschung der UdSSR). An American-sponsored research institute founded in Munich in July 1950 by a group of émigré scholars from the Soviet Union. Originally called the Institute for the Study of the Culture and History of the USSR, the institute’s aim was to conduct research on various aspects of the state and society of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, especially the nationalities question. The first president of its Learned Council was Borys Martos. Other prominent members were B. Yakovlev, Ivan Bakalo, Mykhailo Miller, Petro Kurinny, Ivan Mirchuk, and Borys Krupnytsky. The institute had a varied publication program of periodicals, monographs, and conference proceedings in several languages, including the journals Ukraïns’kyi zbirnyk (17 issues, 1954–60) and Ukrainian Review (9 issues, 1955–60). Among its publications were works by Panas Fedenko, Vsevolod Holubnychy, Hryhory Kostiuk, Nataliia Polonska-Vasylenko, Dmytro Solovei, and other Ukrainian scholars. By 1960 it had 45 full and 29 corresponding members. The institute was dissolved in June 1972.

-- Institute for the Study of the USSR, by Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 2 (1989).

The Free Europe Committee published the magazine East Europe, distributed in this country as well as abroad, and also operated the Free Europe Press Service.

Far more obscure were two other C.I.A. broadcasting ventures, Radio Free Asia and a rather tenuous operation known as Free Cuba Radio. Free Cuba Radio, established in the early 1960's, did not broadcast from its own transmitters but purchased air time from a number of commercial radio stations in Florida and Louisiana.

Its propaganda broadcasts against the Government of Prime Minister Fidel Castro were carried over radio stations WMIE and WGBS in Miami, WKWF in Key West and WWL in New Orleans. They supplemented other C.I.A. broadcasts over a short‐wave station, WRUL, with offices in New York City, and Radio Swan, on a tiny island in the Caribbean.

The managements of those stations are largely changed, and it was not possible to establish whether any of them were aware of the source of the funds that paid for the programs. But sources in the Cuban community in Miami said it was known generally at the time that funds from some Federal agency were involved.

One motive for establishing the Free Cuba radio network, a former C.I.A. official said he recalled, was to have periods of air time available in advance in case Radio Swan, meant to be the main communications link for the Bay of Pigs invasion, was destroyed by saboteurs.

Radio Swan's cover was thin enough to warrant such concern. The powerful station, whose broadcasts could be heard over much of the Western Hemisphere, was operated by a steamship company in New York that had not owned a steamship for some time.

Radio Swan was also besieged by potential advertisers eager to take advantage of its strong, clear signal. After months of turning customers away, the C.I.A. was finally forced to begin accepting some business to preserve what cover Radio Swan had left.

Radio Free Asia began broadcasting to mainland China in 1951 from an elaborate set of transmitters in Manila. It was an arm of the Committee for Free Asia, and the C.I.A. thought of it as the beginning of an operation in the Far East that would rival Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty.

The Committee for Free Asia, according to former C.I.A. officials, was founded as the Eastern counterpart of the Free Europe Committee. It later changed its name to the Asia Foundation. It still exists, though its ties to the C.I.A. were severed a decade ago.

The Asia Foundation was headed for years by the late Robert Blum, who, several sources said, resigned from the C.I.A. to take it over. The foundation provided cover for at least one C.I.A. operative and carried out a variety of media‐related ventures, including a program, begun in 1955, of selecting and paying the expenses of Asian journalists for a year of study in Harvard's prestigious Neiman Fellowship program.

Emergency Airlift Fails

It was only after Radio Free Asia's transmitters were operating, according to sources familiar with the case, that the C.I.A. realized that there were almost no radio receivers in private hands in mainland China. An emergency plan was drawn up.

Balloons, holding small radios tuned to Radio Free Asia's frequency, were lofted toward the mainland from the island of Taiwan, where the Chinese Nationalists had fled after the Communist takeover of the mainland in 1949. The plan was abandoned when the balloons were blown back to Taiwan across the Formosa Strait.

Radio Free Asia went off the air in 1955.

The C.I.A.'s involvement in the field of publishing extended around the world and embraced a wide variety of periodicals, some of them obscure and many of them now defunct. In some instances, sources said, there was no effort to mold editorial policy despite sizable subsidies, but in others policy was virtually dictated.

One of the C.I.A.'s ventures in this country involved the subsidization of several publications whose editors and publishers had fled from Havana to Miami after the Castro Government came to power in 1959. The subsidies — in some cases they amounted to several million dollars — were passed to the publications through a C.I.A. front in New York called Foreign Publications Inc.

The dozen recipients of these subsidies reportedly included Avance, El Mundo, El Prensa Libre, Bohemia and El Diario de las Americas. In addition, the C.I.A. is said to have financed AIP, a radio news agency in Miami that produced programs sent free of charge to more than 100 small stations in Central and Latin America.

The C.I.A. initially intended to clandestinely distribute copies of the subsidized publications into Cuba, but that plan was dropped after the Cuban exiles who had agreed to take them by boat refused in the last minutes to approach the Cuban shore.

The subsidies continued anyway, and the publications were widely read in the Cuban community in Miami and, in the case of Bohemia, a weekly magazine that received more than $3 million altogether, throughout Latin America as well.

The intelligence agency's onetime support of Encounter, the British journal, has been reported, but agency sources said that the Congress of Cultural Freedom, the Paris‐based group through which the C.I.A. channeled the funds, also supported a number of other publications, many of them now out of business.

Ties to Agency Were Cut

The congress, which was founded in 1950 as a response to a conference of Soviet writers that year in Berlin, has since cut its ties to the American agency, reconstituted itself and changed its name. But during the years when it was a C.I.A. conduit, it provided financial support to the French magazine Preuves, Forum in Austria, Der Monat in West Germany, El Mundo Nuevo in Latin America and, in India, the publications Thought and Quest.

In the United States, Atlas magazine, digest of the world press, occasionally used translators employed by the C.I.A.

African Forum and Africa Report were published with C.I.A. money passed to the American Society of African Culture and the African‐American Institute. In Stockholm the publication Argumenten received C.I.A. funds through a channel so complex that even its editor was unaware of the source of the money. So did Combate, a Latin American bimonthly.

In Nairobi, Kenya, the C.I.A. set up The East African Legal Digest, less as a propaganda organ than as a cover for one of its operatives. In the United States, the Asia Foundation published a newspaper, The Asian Student, that was distributed to students from the Far East who were attending American universities.

In Saigon, the Vietnam Council on Foreign Relations, modeled after the American version and financed entirely by the C.I.A., published a slick, expensively produced magazine that was distributed during the Vietnam War to the offices of all senators and representatives in Washington.

Among the more unusual of the C.I.A.'s relationships was the one it shared with a Princeton, N.J., concern called the Research Council. The council, founded by Hadley Cantril, the late chairman of the Princeton University psychology department, and his associate, Lloyd Free, derived nearly all its income from the C.I.A. in the decade in which it was active.

“They were considered an asset because we paid them so much money,” a former C.I.A. man said. Mr. Free confirmed that he 2nd Dr. Cantril, an acknowledged pioneer in public opinion polling, had “just sort of run” the council for the C.I.A.

The council's activities, Mr. Free said, consisted of extensive public opinion surveys conducted in other countries on questions of interest to the C.I.A. Some, he said, were conducted inside Eastern Europe, the Soviet bloc.

The governments of the countries, Mr. Free said, “didn't know anything about the C.I.A.” Nor, apparently, did Rutgers University Press, which published some of the results in a 1967 volume called “Pattern of Human Concerns.”

Albert Hadley Cantril, Jr. (16 June 1906 – 28 May 1969) was a Princeton University psychologist who expanded the scope of the field.

Cantril made "major contributions in psychology of propaganda; public opinion research; applications of psychology and psychological research to national policy, international understanding, and communication; developmental psychology; psychology of social movements; measurement and scaling; humanistic psychology; the psychology of perception; and, basic to all of them, the analysis of human behavior from the transactional point of view."...

Cantril was born in Hyrum, Utah in 1906 and first studied at Dartmouth College, graduating Bachelor of Science in 1928. He did graduate study in Munich and Berlin, then studied at Harvard graduating with Doctor of Philosophy in psychology in 1931. He was hired as an instructor by Dartmouth and joined the Princeton University faculty in 1936. The next year he became president of the Institute for Propaganda Analysis and one of the founding editors of Public Opinion Quarterly. Later he became chairman of the Princeton University Department of Psychology.

Cantril was a member of the Princeton Radio Research Project. The Project looked at the reaction to Orson Welles' The War of the Worlds and published a study accenting the public's disturbance.

In 1940 he served as a consultant to the Office of the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs....

The Office of the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs, later known as the Office for Inter-American Affairs, was a United States agency promoting inter-American cooperation (Pan-Americanism) during the 1940s, especially in commercial and economic areas. It was started in August 1940 as OCCCRBAR (Office for Coordination of Commercial and Cultural Relations between the American Republics) with Nelson Rockefeller as its head, appointed by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt....

The agency's function was to distribute news, films and advertising, and to broadcast radio, in and to Latin America in order to counter Italian and German propaganda there. The OCIAA grew to be a large Federal agency with a budget of $38 million by 1942 and 1,500 employees by 1943....

The mission of the OCIAA was cultural diplomacy, promoting hemispheric solidarity and countering the growing influence of the Axis powers in Latin America. The OCIAA's Motion Picture Division played an important role in documenting history and shaping opinion toward the Allied nations, particularly after the U.S. entered World War II in December 1941. To support the war effort — and for their own audience development throughout Latin America — Hollywood studios partnered with the U.S. government on a nonprofit basis, making films and incorporating Latin American stars and content into their commercial releases.

-- Office of the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs, by Wikipedia

Though trained as a psychologist, Cantril's most important work concerned the then-new topic of public opinion research. Influenced initially by the success of George Gallup and Elmo Roper during the 1936 presidential election, Cantril sought to apply their systematic polling technique to academic social psychology. While Cantril was department chairman he became a presidential advisor:

Cantril's small-scale program at Princeton became more extensive in September 1940 when Nelson Rockefeller, FDR's Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs, asked the Princeton psychologist to "set up mechanisms which would gauge public opinion in Latin America." In cooperation with Gallup, and with funds from the Office of Emergency Management, Cantril established an ostensibly independent research organization, American Social Surveys. He recruited his friend Leonard Doob, and another researcher Lloyd Free, to analyse Nazi propaganda coming into Latin America. Through Rockefeller's office, the results of Cantril's program were brought to the attention of FDR. The president asked Cantril to monitor public sentiment on avoiding war versus aiding Britain. Cantril duly kept tabs on views about aiding England and on the public's willingness to change U.S. neutrality laws in favor of Britain.

-- Hadley Cantril, by Wikipedia

Book Publishing Ventures

The C.I.A.'s relationship with Frederick Praeger, the book publisher, has been reported in the past. But Praeger was only one of a number of publishing concerns, including some of the most prominent in the industry, that printed or distributed more than 1,000 volumes produced or subsidized in some way by the agency over the last three decades.

Some of the publishing houses were nothing more than C.I.A. “proprietaries.” Among these were Allied Pacific Printing, of Bombay, India, and the Asia Research Centre, one of several agency publishing ventures in Hong Kong, which was described by an agency source as “nothing but a couple of translators.”

The Almost Classified Guide to CIA Front Companies, Proprietaries & Contractors, by Wayne Madsen

Other, legitimate publishers that received C.I.A. subsidies according to former and current agency officials, were Franklin Books, a New York‐based house that specializes in translations of academic works, and Walker & Co., jointly owned by Samuel Sloan Walker Jr., a onetime vice president of the Free Europe Committee, and Samuel W. Meek, a retired executive of the J. Walter Thompson advertising agency and a man with close ties to the C.I.A.

A spokesman at Franklin confirmed that the publisher had received grants from the Asia Foundation and “from another small foundation for an African project, both of which were exposed in 1967 as being supported by C.I.A.” The spokesman added, “Franklin was unaware of that support then.”

Mr. Walker said through a secretary that his concern had never “printed books on behalf of the C.I.A. nor published any book from any source which was not worthy of publication on its merits.”

Other publishing houses that brought out books to which the C.I.A. had made editorial contributions included Charles Scribner's Sons, which in 1951 published “The Yenan Way,” by Eudocio Ravines, from a translation supplied by William F. Buckley Jr., who was a C.I.A. agent for several years in the early 1950's. Also in 1951, G. P. Putnam's Sons published “Life and Death in Soviet Russia,” by Valentin Gonzalez, the famous “El Campesino” of the Spanish Civil War.

According to executives of both houses, Putnam and Scribner's were unaware of any agency involvement in those books, as was Doubleday & Company, which in 1965 brought out, under the title “The Penkovskiy Papers,” what purported to be a diary kept by Col. Oleg Penkovsky, the Soviet double agent. The book even used C.I.A. style in the transliteration of the colonel's name.

Also unaware of the C.I.A. connection was Ballantine Books, which published a modest volume on Finland, “Study in Sisu,” written by Austin Goodrich, an undercover C.I.A. man who posed for years in Scandinavia as a freelance author researching a book about Finland.

Authorship Used as Cover

Another C.I.A. operative who employed the cover of a freelance author in search of a book was Edward S. Hunter, who roamed Central Asia for years collecting material for a work on Afghanistan that eventually was published by the prestigious house of Hodder & Stoughton of London.

Other C.I.A. men worked abroad while writing books, including Lee White, an employee of the Middle Eastern Division who wrote a biography of General Mohammed Neguib of Egypt, and Peter Matthiessen, the writer and naturalist who began work on a novel, “Partisans,” while with the C.I.A. in Paris from 1951 until 1953, where he also helped George Plimpton found The Paris Review.

The Snow Leopard (Penguin Classics), by Peter Matthiessen

An unforgettable spiritual journey through the Himalayas by renowned writer Peter Matthiessen (1927-2014), the National Book Award-winning author of the new novel In Paradise

In 1973, Peter Matthiessen and field biologist George Schaller traveled high into the remote mountains of Nepal to study the Himalayan blue sheep and possibly glimpse the rare and beautiful snow leopard. Matthiessen, a student of Zen Buddhism, was also on a spiritual quest to find the Lama of Shey at the ancient shrine on Crystal Mountain. As the climb proceeds, Matthiessen charts his inner path as well as his outer one, with a deepening Buddhist understanding of reality, suffering, impermanence, and beauty. This Penguin Classics edition features an introduction by acclaimed travel writer and novelist Pico Iyer.

-- The Snow Leopard, by Peter Matthiessen, by Amazon

As with Mr. Hunter, Mr. White and Mr. Matthiessen used their careers as authors only as covers for their intelligence activities. There is no evidence that the C.I.A. attempted to control what they wrote or that it attempted through Mr. Matthiessen to influence the Paris Review.

Several C.I.A. efforts in book publishing were well received by critics, and a few were commercial successes. “At least once,” according to a report by the Senate intelligence committee, “a book review for an agency book which appeared in The New York Times was written by a C.I.A. writer under contract” to the agency.

The report did not identify the volume or the reviewer, but the book is said to have been “Escape from Red China,” the story of a defector from China published by Coward, McCann and Geoghegan. Jack Geoghegan, president of the company, said he never knew that the book had been prepared for publication by the C.I.A.

The book was reviewed by The Times on Sunday, Nov. 11, 1962, by Richard L. Walker, who is now director of the Institute of International Studies at the University of South Carolina and is a frequent book reviewer for the newspaper. Professor Walker said in a telephone interview that he had been under contract to the C.I.A. as a consultant and lecturer before and after the review appeared, but not at the time he wrote it. Nor, he said, did he know that the book had been produced by the C.I.A.

Another successful book that intelligence sources said was published in 1962 with the assistance of the C.I.A. is “On the Tiger's Back” by Aderogba Ajao, Nigerian who had studied at an East German University and returned home to write about his disillusionment.

A Yugoslavian Connection

The Praeger organization, which was purchased by Encyclopaedia Brittanica in 1966, first became involved with the C.I.A. in 1957 when it published “The New Class,” a landmark work by Milovan Djilas, a disillusioned official of the Yugoslav Government who wrote extensively about his personal rejection of Communism.

Mr. Djilas, who had become a source of embarrassment to his Government before the work was published, had difficulty getting the last portion of the manuscript out of Yugoslavia.

Mr. Praeger said that he had appealed to a friend in the American Government (though not in the C.I.A.) for assistance in obtaining the final pages. The manuscript was eventually carried from Belgrade to Vienna by Edgar Clark, then a correspondent for Time magazine, and his wife, Katherine.

Mr. Clark said that neither he nor his wife had ever had anything to do with the C.I.A. But the manuscript ultimately reached the hands of a C.I.A. officer named Arthur Macy Cox. Mr. Cox, who later worked under Praeger cover in Geneva, set in motion an effort by the agency to have the book translated into a variety of languages and distributed around the world.

“It was my first contact with the "C.I.A.,” Mr. Praeger said, but he added that at the time he had “no idea there even was a C.I.A.”

Mr. Praeger said that he later published 20 to 25 volumes in which the C.I.A. had had an interest, either in the writing, the publication itself or the post-publication distribution.

The agency's involvement, he said, might have been manifested in a variety of ways—reimbursing him directly for the expenses of publication or guaranteeing, perhaps through a foundation of some sort, the purchase of enough copies to make publication worthwhile.

Among the Praeger books in which the C.I.A. had a hand were “The Anthill,” a work about China by the French writer Suzanne Labin, and two books on the Soviet Union by Gunther Nollau, a member of the West German security service and later its chief. Mr. Nollau was identified in a New York Times review only as “a West German lawyer who fled some years ago from East Germany.”

Dozens of foreign-language newspapers, news services and other organizations were financed and operated by the C.I.A.—two of the most prominent were said to have been DENA, the West German news agency, and Agenda Orbe Latino American, the Latin American feature service.

The C.I.A.'s Newspapers

In addition, the C.I.A. had heavy investments in a variety of English-language news organizations. Asked why the agency had had a preference for these, a former senior official of the agency explained that it was less difficult to conceal the ownership of publications that had ostensible reasons for belonging to an American and easier to place American agents in those publications as reporters and editors.

The Rome Daily American, which the C.I.A. partly owned from 1956 to 1964, when it was purchased by Samuel W. Meek, a J. Walter Thompson executive, was only one of the agency's “'proprietary” English‐language newspapers.

There were, it was said, such “proprietaries” in other capitals, including Athens and Rangoon. They usually served a dual role—providing cover fur intelligence operatives and at the same time publishing agency propaganda.

But the C.I.A.'s ownership of newspapers was generally viewed as costly and difficult to conceal, and all such relationships are now said to have been ended.

The Rome Daily American was taken over by the C.I.A., it was said, to keep it from failing into the hands of Italian Communists. But the agency eventually tired of trying to maintain the fiction that the newspaper was privately owned and, as soon as the perceived threat from the Communists had passed, sold it to Mr. Meek.

Even after the agency sold the newspaper, however, it was managed for several years by Robert H. Cunningham, a C.I.A. officer who had resigned from the agency and had been rehired as a contract employee.

A former C.I.A. official said that the agency passed up an opportunity to purchase another English‐language newspaper, The Brussels Times, which was being run by a C.I.A. man but had no other ties to the agency. The official said the agency responded to the offer by saying that it was “easier to buy a reporter, which we've done, than to buy a newspaper.”

In addition to the C.I.A.'s “proprietary” newspapers in Athens, Rangoon and Rome, agency sources said it had also had investments in The Okinawa Morning Star, used more for cover purposes than for propaganda; The Manila Times and The Bangkok World, now both defunct, and The Tokyo Evening News in the days before it was purchased by Asahi, the publishing organization.

“We ‘had’ at least one newspaper in every foreign capital at any given time,” one C.I.A. man said, and those that the agency did not own outright or subsidize heavily it infiltrated with paid agents or staff officers who could have stories printed that were useful to the agency and not print those it found detrimental.

Agents Placed on Staffs

In Santiago, Chile, The South Pacific Mail, though apparently never owned by the C.I.A, provided cover for two operatives: David A. Phillips, who eventually rose to become chief of the C.I.A.'s Western Hemisphere Division, and David C. Hellyer, who resigned as Latin American editor for the Copley newspaper organization to join the C.I.A.

Other newspapers on whose staffs the C.I.A. is said to have placed agents over the years included The Guyana Chronicle, The Haiti Sun, The Japan Times, The Nation of Rangoon, The Caracas Daily Journal and The Bangkok Post.

And before the 1959 revolution The Times of Havana, owned by a former C.I.A. man, contributed to the “cover” of Mr. Phillips by signing him on as columnist.

The C.I.A. reportedly had agents within a number of foreign news services, including LATIN, a Latin American agency operated by the British news agency, Reuters, and the Ritzhaus organization in Scandanavia.

Although there were C.I.A agents in the overseas bureaus of The Associated Press and United Press International, the C.I.A. is said to have had none in Reuters because that agency is British and thus a potential target of the British Secret Intelligence Service.

But sources familiar with the situation said that the C.I.A occasionally “borrowed” British “assets” inside Reuters for the purpose of planting news articles. Asked about the much‐publicized assertion by William E. Colby, the former Director of Central Intelligence, that the agency never “manipulated” Reuters, one official replied that “it wasn't manipulation because Reuters knew” that the stories were being planted by the C.I.A. and that some were bogus.

Desmond Manerly, Reuters's managing editor for North America, has said that such charges were “old‐hat stuff to us.” He noted that Reuters's managing director, for Gerald Long, had asked for evidence of such manipulation but that none had been forthcoming.

A number of news agencies were owned outright or were heavily financed by the C.I.A. One, the Foreign News Service, produced articles written by a group of journalists who had been exiled from Eastern European nations. In the early 1960's the articles were sold to as many as 300 newspapers around the world, including The New York Times, The Christian Science Monitor and The New York Herald Tribune.

Boleslaw Wierzbianski, a former Polish Minister of Information and the onetime head of the news service, said that as far as he knew, the C.I.A.'s only involvement was financial and the agency never tried to control the service's output or use it as a cover.

Press Credentials Supplied

By contrast, an outright C.I.A. proprietary was the Continental Press Service, which had headquarters in Washington and was run by a C.I.A. man named Fred Zusy. One of its principal functions was to supply official-looking, laminated press credentials to agency operatives in urgent need of cover.

Editors Press Service was an established feature news service with clients throughout Latin America when, according to two former C.I.A. officials and third authoritative source, it became a channel of dissemination for agency-inspired propaganda. One former C.I.A. man said that the service, owned at the time by Joshua B. Powers Sr., was an outlet for what he called “cliché stories, news stories prepared by the agency or for the agency.”

Mr. Powers acknowledged that for years he was a close friend of the late Col. J. C. King, longtime chief of the agency's Western Hemisphere Division; that he had served as an officer of the C.I.A.-financed Henry Clay foundation, and that it was he who had purchased The South Pacific Mail from David A. Phillips and owned it during the period, in the mid-1960's, when it was being used for cover by David Hellyer.

Mr. Powers could recall only a single connection, however, between Editors Press and the C.I.A. He said that in the mid‐1960's he had used C.I.A. funds to finance the Latin American travels of one of his writers, Guillermo Martinez Marquez, the exiled editor of a Cuban newspaper. Mr. Marquez said that he had never known that the money he received from Mr. Powers had come from the C.I.A.

Perhaps the most widely circulated of the C.I.A.‐owned news services was Forum World Features, founded in 1958 as a Delaware corporation, Forum Information Service, with offices in London. Forum was ostensibly owned during much of its life by John Hay Whitney, the publisher of The New York Herald Tribune, which ceased publication in 1966. According to several C.I.A. sources, Mr. Whitney was “witting” of the agency's true role.

A secretary to Mr. Whitney said that he was too ill to respond to questions about his involvement with Forum.

Also aware of a C.I.A. role, according to former and current agency officials, was Brian Crozier, the conservative British journalist who the officials said had been a contract employee of the agency, and Robert G. Gately. Mr. Gately, Forum's executive director in the early 1960's, was a career C.I.A. man who went on to hold cover jobs with Newsweek, as Far Eastern business manager, and with Asia Magazine in Tokyo.

Newsweek executives, like those of nearly all the major news‐gathering organizations said to have been involved with the C.I.A., have said that while they are certain that no one presently employed has any ties to the agency, there is no way to be certain that no such connections existed in the past.

U.S. Papers Among Clients

Though the C.I.A. has insisted that it never attempted directly to place its propaganda in the American press, at one time Forum World Features had 30 domestic newspapers among its clients, including The Washington Post, and tried, without success, to sell its material to The New York Times.

The sale of Forum's material to The Washington Post and other American newspapers, one C.I.A. official said, “put us in a hell of a dilemma.” The sales, he went on, were considered necessary to preserve the organization's cover, and they occasioned a continuing and somewhat frantic effort to insure that the domestic clients were given only legitimate news stories.

Another major foreign news organization that C.I.A. officials said they once subsidized was Vision, the weekly news magazine that is distributed throughout Europe and Latin America. However, none of those associated with the founding of Vision or its management over the years said they had ever had any indication that the C.I.A. had put money into the magazine.

Tom Braden, now a columnist, was first to head propaganda unit.

The late Robert Blum, who several sources say resigned from the C.I.A., to head Asia Foundation.
Site Admin
Posts: 36301
Joined: Thu Aug 01, 2013 5:21 am

Re: The CIA and the Media: How America's Most Powerful News

Postby admin » Thu Jun 04, 2020 3:49 am

CIA, State Department, American Committee for Liberation Discussion of Radio Liberty Broadcasting
CIA mandatory declassification review document number C01441011.
March 15, 1952

Summary: CIA, State Department, and American Committee for Liberation (AMCOMLIB) officials agree to expand AMCOMLIB activities, share funding with Radio Free Europe from the Crusade for Freedom, and delay Radio Liberty broadcasts until a sponsoring Russian Émigré Political Center is formed.


15 March 1952


SUBJECT: Summary of Conclusions Reached at 14 March 1952 Meeting in Office of Mr. C.E. Bohlen on Questions Raised by Admiral Alan G. Kirk


C.E. Bohlen [Charles Eustis “Chip” Bohlen]
Admiral Alan G. Kirk [Admiral Alan Goodrich Kirk]
Allen W. Dulles [Allen Welsh Dulles]
Francis B. Stevens
Walworth R. Barbour [Walworth “Wally” Barbour]
Robert P. Joyce
John A. Bross

The meeting was called at the request of Admiral Kirk, who wished to discuss a few questions concerning the American Committee for the Liberation of the Peoples of Russia. The following conclusions were reached:

1. Continuing efforts to add to the membership of the Committee persons of prominent will be intensified.

a. Especial emphasis will be laid on adding members of such established wealth as to increase the plausibility of the Committee’s engaging in its contemplated psychological warfare activities.

b. Mr. Dulles undertook to expedite the customary security clearance of these persons, by waiving normal security procedures after a routine name check has revealed nothing unfavorable.

2. The Committee will initiate projects the value of which from a research standpoint should enable it to obtain grants from one or more Foundations (Carnegie, Rockefeller, etc.). To the extent that Foundation funds are thus obtained, added plausibility will be given to Committee operations from a financial aspect.

3. A third source of funds, for the Committee’s activities will be developed through the Crusade for Freedom. This Crusade now finances many of the activities of the National Committee for Free Europe [DELETE]. The policy objection was seen to the Crusade’s also financing Admiral Kirk’s Committee. Mr. Bohlen stated that he approved such use of the funds raised by the Crusade.

a. Mr. Dulles stressed the need for examining whether the Crusade can now contribute to the Committee, from the funds raised by it in the 1951? campaign. That campaign may have been so conducted that contributors might resent Crusade funds going to the American Committee.

b. It was agreed that in any event, the Crusade should announce as soon as possible that it has decided to accept funds for the American Committee. Arrangements will be made with Crusade officials to solicit funds during the 1952 campaign in such a way as to enable it to turn over a portion of these funds to the American Committee.


4. With regard to the need of explaining the Committee’s principles and purposes to interested persons inside and outside the several branches of the Government, it was agreed that Admiral Kirk can and should regard such explanation as one of his more important tasks.

5. There was general agreement that Admiral Kirk should go slowly in his meetings with Russian and non-Russian émigrés. Mr. Bohlen urged that the Admiral first interview the American spokesmen for or supporters of these émigrés. Mr. Stevens stressed that the Admiral should, insofar as possible, keep the émigrés themselves at arm’s length.

6. Although no conclusions were reached, there was considerable discussion on the sort of [illegible] that will prevent the Committee’s proposed radio program from becoming just another American radio in Europe. Mr. Bohlen said there are three views with regard to the Political Center that the American Committee is trying to establish: (a) the Center is a political impossibility; (b) it would be preferable to organize an [illegible] on a purely cultural or individual basis – rather than the group approach that is now being pursued; (c) a purely Great Russian center would be relatively simple to establish and should be set up for relative ease of operations.

Generally speaking, the consensus of the meeting was that something less than an ideal Center as originally conceived would be acceptable to the State Department, but the importance of a genuine Russian auspices far outweighs the value of the radio program as such; it is preferable to wait a month or so before broadcasting in order to obtain a valid auspices, than it is to start broadcasting as seen as possible under a sponsorship that is transparently this.
Site Admin
Posts: 36301
Joined: Thu Aug 01, 2013 5:21 am

Re: The CIA and the Media: How America's Most Powerful News

Postby admin » Thu Jun 04, 2020 6:43 am

Office of the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 6/3/20

"We Fight for the Freedom of All" — OCIAA poster by Edward McKnight Kauffer, promoting inter-American solidarity

The Office of the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs, later known as the Office for Inter-American Affairs, was a United States agency promoting inter-American cooperation (Pan-Americanism) during the 1940s, especially in commercial and economic areas. It was started in August 1940 as OCCCRBAR (Office for Coordination of Commercial and Cultural Relations between the American Republics) with Nelson Rockefeller as its head, appointed by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt.[1][2]

The Office of Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs in the Executive Office of the President was formally established and enacted by US Executive Order 8840 on July 30, 1941 by President Roosevelt[3][4] who named Nelson Rockefeller as the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs (CIAA).

The agency's function was to distribute news, films and advertising, and to broadcast radio, in and to Latin America in order to counter Italian and German propaganda there.[5] The OCIAA grew to be a large Federal agency with a budget of $38 million by 1942[6] and 1,500 employees by 1943.

It was later renamed the Office of Inter-American Affairs (OIAA) with slightly changed powers by Executive order 9532 on March 23, 1945.[7]


Nelson Rockefeller, Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs (1940)

As a goodwill ambassador in 1942, Orson Welles toured the Estudios San Miguel in Buenos Aires, meeting with Argentine film personalities including (center photograph) actress Libertad Lamarque.

The Office of the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs was established in August 1940 by order of the U.S. Council of National Defense, and operated with funds from both the government and the private sector.[8]:10–11 By executive order July 30, 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt established the OCIAA within the Office for Emergency Management of the Executive Office of the President, "to provide for the development of commercial and cultural relations between the American Republics and thereby increasing the solidarity of this hemisphere and furthering the spirit of cooperation between the Americas in the interest of hemisphere defense."[9]

The mission of the OCIAA was cultural diplomacy, promoting hemispheric solidarity and countering the growing influence of the Axis powers in Latin America. The OCIAA's Motion Picture Division played an important role in documenting history and shaping opinion toward the Allied nations, particularly after the U.S. entered World War II in December 1941. To support the war effort — and for their own audience development throughout Latin America — Hollywood studios partnered with the U.S. government on a nonprofit basis, making films and incorporating Latin American stars and content into their commercial releases.[8]:10–11

During the 1940s the CBS radio broadcasting network also contributed to the OCIAA's cultural initiatives by establishing the CBS Pan American Orchestra to showcase prominent musical artists from both North and South America on its Viva América program. Broadcasts to Latin America were coordinated by the OCIAA with CBS' "La Cadena de Las Américas" (Network of the Americas) shortwave radio and radiotelephone systems as envisioned by William S. Paley.[10] Included among the international contributors were: Alfredo Antonini (Italian-American conductor), Terig Tucci (Argentine composer), John Serry Sr. (Italian-American accordionist), Elsa Miranda (Puerto Rican vocalist), Eva Garza (Mexican-American vocalist), Nestor Mesa Chaires (Mexican tenor), Juan Arvizu (Mexican tenor) and Edmund A. Chester (American journalist). [11][12][13][14][15][16][17][18][19][20] The OCIAA also supported cultural programming on the CBS radio network which included performances by such Hollywood luminaries as Edward G. Robinson and Rita Hayworth.[21]

Artists working in a variety of disciplines were appointed goodwill ambassadors to Latin America by the OCIAA, which also sponsored a variety of cultural tours. A select listing includes Misha Reznikoff and photojournalist Genevieve Naylor (October 1940–May 1943); Bing Crosby (August–October 1941); Walt Disney (August–October 1941); Aaron Copland (August–December 1941); George Balanchine and the American Ballet (1941); Orson Welles (1942); Rita Hayworth (1942); Grace Moore (1943); and John Ford and Gregg Toland (1943).[8]:245


"As One Man" — OCIAA poster by Antonio Arias Bernal

In its early days, a particular concern of the OCIAA was the elimination of German influence in South America, and that of other Axis powers. Trade routes to Europe were disrupted following the fall of France in June 1940, presenting opportunities to both Germany and the U.S. At the same time, many agents or affiliates of U.S. firms operating in Latin America were sympathetic to European Axis powers. The office encouraged a voluntary program of non-cooperation with companies and individuals perceived to be anti-American. To this end it cooperated secretly with British Security Coordination in New York. Though isolated in Europe, Britain maintained an extensive intelligence network in Latin America, and was happy to undermine Germany's trade efforts overseas by identifying sympathisers and agents. Through these efforts, U.S. exporters were encouraged to drop over a thousand accounts in South America during the first half of 1941.[22]

The office was also concerned with public opinion in Latin America. It translated and disseminated relevant speeches by President Roosevelt, and distributed pro-U.S materials to features syndicates in the region. It carried out audience research surveys and encouraged radio broadcasters targeting these regions to improve the quality of their programming. In order to discourage opposing views it created a 'Proclaimed List', a black-list of newspapers and radio stations owned or influenced by Axis powers. Latin American firms wishing to do business with America were discouraged from dealing with these stations. Tax incentives were also used: spending by American firms on unprofitable longwave transmission to Latin America could be deducted from income tax payments. Likewise, spending on approved advertising in Latin America became deductible from corporate income taxes.[6]

Walt Disney and a group of animators had been sent to South America in 1941 by the U.S. State Department as part of its Good Neighbor policy, and guaranteed financing for the resulting movie, Saludos Amigos.[23] In 1944, William Benton, publisher of the Encyclopædia Britannica, had entered into unsuccessful negotiations with Disney to make six to twelve educational films annually. Disney was asked to make an educational film about the Amazon Basin and it resulted in the 1944 animated short, The Amazon Awakens.[24][25][26][27][28]


By an Executive order of August 31, 1945, the informational activities of the Office of Inter-American Affairs were transferred to the Department of State. It became known as the Office for Inter-American Affairs. By an Executive order of April 10, 1946, the Office was abolished and its remaining functions and responsibilities were transferred to the State Department.


• Nelson Rockefeller, Coordinator of the Office for Coordination of Commercial and Cultural Relations between the American Republics and Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs (1940–44):
• Wallace Harrison, Director of the Office for Inter-American Affairs (1945–46)

Soviet penetration

The Office of the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs was penetrated by Soviet intelligence during World War II. The agency's code name in Soviet intelligence and in the Venona project is "Cabaret".[29]:200 These American citizens were employees of the OCIAA and engaged in espionage on behalf of the Soviet Union:

• Marion Davis Berdecio[29]:201, 346
• Jack Fahy[29]:187
• Joseph Gregg[29]:111, 114
• Helen Grace Scott Keenan[29]:204
• Robert Talbott Miller[29]:111, 114
• Willard Park[29]:101

See also

• Hello Americans
• The Sea Hound
• It's All True
• Viva América
• Gracias Amigos


1. Thomson, Charles Alexander Holmes, Overseas information service of the United States Government, The Brookings Institution, 1948. Cf. p.4.
2. Dissonant Divas in Chicana Music: The Limits of La Onda Deborah R. Vargas. University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis, 2012 p. 152-155 ISBN 978-0-8166-7316-2 OCIAA (Office of the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs), FDR's Good Neighbor Policy, CBS, Viva America, La Cadena de las Americas on
3. "Executive Order 8840 Establishing the Office of Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs. | The American Presidency Project". Retrieved March 26, 2019.
4. "1941: Executive Order 8840", Federal Register, 1941.
5. Anthony, Edwin D. Records of the Office of Inter-American Affairs. National Archives and Record Services- General Services Administration, Washington, D.C., 1973 p. 1-8 Library of Congress Catalog No. 73-600146 Records of the Office of Inter-American Affairs at The National Archive Online at
6. Gerald K. Haines (1977). "Under the Eagle's Wing: The Franklin Roosevelt Administration Forges An American Hemisphere". Diplomatic History. 1 (4): 373–388. doi:10.1111/j.1467-7709.1977.tb00248.x. JSTOR 24909904. Aided by United States tax laws that provided for expenditures made by the radio industry
7. "1945: Executive Order 9532", Federal Register, 1945.
8. Benamou, Catherine L., It's All True: Orson Welles's Pan-American Odyssey. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2007 ISBN 978-0-520-24247-0
9. Roosevelt, Franklin D., "Executive Order 8840 Establishing the Office of Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs", July 30, 1941. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project, University of California, Santa Barbara
10. Dissonant Divas in Chicana Music: The Limits of La Onda Deborah R. Vargas. University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis, 2012 p. 152-153 ISBN 978-0-8166-7316-2 OCIAA and William S. Paley's Cadena De Las Americas on
11. "Copyright 2019, J. David Goldin".
12. The New York Times, January 8, 1941, pg. 8
13. The New York Times, January 1, 1942, pg. 27
14. The New York Times, May 10, 1942, pg. SM10
15. The New York Times, February 28, 1943, pg. X9
16. The New York Times, January 18, 1942, pg. 27
17. A Pictorial History of Radio. Settel, Irving. Grosset & Dunlap, New York 1960 & 1967, pg. 146, Library of Congress #67-23789
18. Media Sound & Culture in Latin America & The Caribbean. Editors: Bronfman, Alejandra & Wood, Andrew Grant. University of Pittsburgh Press, Pittsburgh, PA, USA, 2012, Pg. 49 ISBN 978-0-8229-6187-1 Books.Google.COm See Pg. 49
19. The Strachwitz Frontera collection of Mexican and Mexican American Recordings- Eva Garza Biography on
20. Dissonant Divas in Chicana Music: The Limits of La Onda Deborah R. Vargas. University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis, 2012 p. 155-157 ISBN 978-0-8166-7316-2 Eva Garza and Viva America on
21. Dissonant Divas in Chicana Music: The Limits of La Onda Deborah R. Vargas. University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis, 2012 p. 153 ISBN 978-0-8166-7316-2 OCIAA, CBS radio and Edward G. Robinson and Rita Hayworth on
22. Kramer, Paul (January 1, 1981). "Nelson Rockefeller and British Security Coordination". Journal of Contemporary History. 16(1): 73–88. doi:10.1177/002200948101600105. Immediately after the fall of France there was unanimity of feeling within the Roosevelt administration that something had to be done about Latin America...
23. Walt & El Grupo (documentary film, 2008).
24. Gabler, 2006, p.444
25. Cramer, Gisela; Prutsch, Ursula, "Nelson A. Rockefeller's Office of Inter-American Affairs (1940-1946) and Record Group 229", Hispanic American Historical Review 2006 86(4):785-806; doi:10.1215/00182168-2006-050. Cf. p.795 and note 28.
26. Bender, Pennee. "Hollywood Meets South American and Stages a Show" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Studies Association. 2009-05-24 <>
27. Niblo, Stephen R., "Mexico in the 1940s: Modernity, Politics, and Corruption", Wilimington, Del. : Scholarly Resources, 1999. ISBN 0-8420-2794-7. Cf. "Nelson Rockefeller and the Office of Inter-American Affairs", p.333
28. Leonard, Thomas M.; Bratzel, John F., Latin America during World War II, Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc., 2007. ISBN 978-0-7425-3741-5. Cf. p.47.
29. Haynes, John Earl; Klehr, Harvey (2000) [1999]. Venona: Decoding Soviet Espionage in America. New Haven; London: Yale University Press. ISBN 9780300084627.

Further reading

• Erb, Claude C. "Prelude to point four: the Institute of Inter-American Affairs." Diplomatic History 9.3 (1985): 249-269.
• Haines, Gerald K. "Under the Eagle's Wing: The Franklin Roosevelt Administration Forges an American Hemisphere." Diplomatic History 1.4 (1977): 373-388. online
• Maxwell, Allen Brewster, Evoking Latin American collaboration in the Second World War: A study of the Office of the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs (1940–1946), PhD dissertation, Tufts University, Medford, MA., 1971.
• Reich, Cary. The Life of Nelson A. Rockefeller: Worlds to Conquer, 1908-1958 (1996), pp 260-373; the standard scholarly biography
• Rowland, Donald W., History of the Office of the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs, US Government Printing Office, 1947. (United States Office of Inter-American Affairs)
• Smith, Richard Norton. On his own terms: A life of Nelson Rockefeller (2014), pp 143-88 a standard scholarly biography.

External links

• Records of the Office of Inter-American Affairs at the U.S. National Archives and Records Administration
• Close-Up: Nelson A. Rockefeller; As Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs, a celebrated young heir runs a much-discussed and increasingly important Washington bureau. Busch, Noel F., Life, April 27, 1942, pp. 80–90
• Rockefeller Family Archives, Record Group #04, Record Group Name: Nelson A. Rockefeller, Personal, Washington, D.C. Files - Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs, Dates: August 1940-December 1944
Films at the Internet Archive
• The Grain That Built a Hemisphere (1942, Walt Disney Productions)
• Defense Against Invasion (1943, Walt Disney Productions)
• The Winged Scourge (1943, Walt Disney Productions]
o Spanish language version, in color
• Wooden Face of Tontonicapan (Guatemala Sketch Book)
• São Paulo, Brazil (1944)
• Health for the Americas series by Walt Disney Productions
o What Is Disease? (1944)
o Cleanliness Brings Health (1944)
o Infant Care and Feeding (1944)
o Insects as Carriers of Disease (1944)
o Planning for Good Eating (1945)
o Environmental Sanitation
• Julien Bryan Productions
o Young Uruguay (1943)
o Good Neighbor Family (1943)
o Housing in Chile: One Government's Plan to Provide Better Homes (1943)
o Fundo in Chile
Site Admin
Posts: 36301
Joined: Thu Aug 01, 2013 5:21 am

Re: The CIA and the Media: How America's Most Powerful News

Postby admin » Thu Jun 04, 2020 6:50 am

Hadley Cantril [Albert Hadley Cantril, Jr.]
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 6/3/20

Albert Hadley Cantril, Jr.
Born: 16 June 1906, Hyrum, Utah, U.S.
Died: 28 May 1969 (aged 62)
Alma mater: Dartmouth College; Harvard University
Occupation: Psychologist, researcher
Spouse(s): Mavis L. Cantril

Albert Hadley Cantril, Jr. (16 June 1906 – 28 May 1969) was a Princeton University psychologist who expanded the scope of the field.

Cantril made "major contributions in psychology of propaganda; public opinion research; applications of psychology and psychological research to national policy, international understanding, and communication; developmental psychology; psychology of social movements; measurement and scaling; humanistic psychology; the psychology of perception; and, basic to all of them, the analysis of human behavior from the transactional point of view."[1] His influence is felt in education, law, philosophy, politics and psychiatry.[1]

"Hadley Cantril, Princeton psychologist, is representative of most quantitative scholars of social influence who, while holding their political commitments close to the vest, nevertheless saw themselves clearly in the ranks of reformers loosely attached to the progressive movement…. Focus on social process and a psychological view of people put the academic scientists of society in a frame of mind to assume the polis languished chiefly because of inaction on the part of enlightened administrators."[2]:74


Cantril was born in Hyrum, Utah in 1906 and first studied at Dartmouth College, graduating Bachelor of Science in 1928. He did graduate study in Munich and Berlin, then studied at Harvard graduating with Doctor of Philosophy in psychology in 1931. He was hired as an instructor by Dartmouth and joined the Princeton University faculty in 1936. The next year he became president of the Institute for Propaganda Analysis and one of the founding editors of Public Opinion Quarterly. Later he became chairman of the Princeton University Department of Psychology.[1]

Cantril was a member of the Princeton Radio Research Project. The Project looked at the reaction to Orson Welles' The War of the Worlds and published a study accenting the public's disturbance.[3]

In 1940 he served as a consultant to the Office of the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs.[4]

Cantril's later psychological work included collaboration with Adelbert Ames, Jr. developing a transactional method for studying human perception, as well as other research in humanistic psychology.[5]:389–90

Public opinion research

Though trained as a psychologist, Cantril's most important work concerned the then-new topic of public opinion research. Influenced initially by the success of George Gallup and Elmo Roper during the 1936 presidential election, Cantril sought to apply their systematic polling technique to academic social psychology.[5]:388 While Cantril was department chairman he became a presidential advisor:

Cantril's small-scale program at Princeton became more extensive in September 1940 when Nelson Rockefeller, FDR's Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs, asked the Princeton psychologist to "set up mechanisms which would gauge public opinion in Latin America." In cooperation with Gallup, and with funds from the Office of Emergency Management, Cantril established an ostensibly independent research organization, American Social Surveys. He recruited his friend Leonard Doob, and another researcher Lloyd Free, to analyse Nazi propaganda coming into Latin America. Through Rockefeller's office, the results of Cantril's program were brought to the attention of FDR. The president asked Cantril to monitor public sentiment on avoiding war versus aiding Britain. Cantril duly kept tabs on views about aiding England and on the public's willingness to change U.S. neutrality laws in favor of Britain.[2]

In 1942 Cantril conducted a small-sample survey of Vichy officials in Morocco, prior to Operation Torch, that revealed the intensity of the anti-British sentiment of the French forces there. This information influenced the disposition of forces during the operation, with American troops landing near Casablanca and mixed forces at Oran and Algiers.[5]:389[6] According to George Gallup, "On the basis of his opinion studies, [Cantril] advised Presidents Roosevelt, Eisenhower, and Kennnedy at critical points in history. Judged by subsequent events his advice was exceptionally sound."[7]

In 1955 he and Lloyd Free founded the Institute for International Social Research (IISR).[8] The IISR was often asked by United States government agencies to conduct small-sample public opinion polls in foreign countries.[9] Notably, Cantril and Free conducted a poll of Cuba during 1960 demonstrating great support for Fidel Castro, which was overlooked during the presidential transition between Eisenhower and Kennedy and read only after the Bay of Pigs Invasion fiasco.[8]

Cantril's most-cited work is The Pattern of Human Concerns, notable for the development of the self-anchoring scale (also known as "Cantril's Ladder").[10] Cantril and Free also first discovered the paradox that American voters tend to oppose "big government" in general while supporting many specific liberal social programs.[8]

During the late 1950s, Cantril served on the International Objectives and Strategies panel of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund's Special Studies Project.[11]


• 1934: Social Psychology of Everyday Life
• 1935:(with Gordon Allport) Psychology of Radio from Internet Archive
• 1939: Industrial Conflict: a Psychological Interpretation,
• 1940: The Invasion from Mars, a Study in the Psychology of Panic
• 1940: America Faces the War, a Study in Public Opinion
• 1941: Psychology of Social Movements from HathiTrust
• 1944: Gauging Public Opinion, Princeton University Press, via Internet Archive
• 1947: (with Muzafer Sherif) Psychology of ego-involvements : social attitudes & identifications via HathiTrust
• 1950: The "Why" of Man's Experience
• 1950: Tensions that cause wars (a report for UNESCO)
• 1951: (with Mildred Strunk) Public Opinion, 1935–1946, polls from the USA, Europe and Canada, via Internet Archive
• 1953: (with William Buchanan) How Nations See Each Other, a study in public opinion
• 1954: (with William H. Ittelson) Perception: a Transactional Approach
• 1956: On Understanding the French Left
• 1958: Faith, Hope, and Heresy: the Psychology of the Protest Voter via HathiTrust
• 1958: Politics of Despair via HathiTrust
• 1960: Reflections on the Human Venture
• 1960: Soviet Leaders and Mastery over Man
• 1961: Human Nature and Political Systems
• 1965: Pattern of Human Concerns
• 1967: (with L. A. Free) Political beliefs of Americans; a study of public opinion
• 1967: The Human Dimension: Experiences in Policy Research
• 1988: (Albert H. Cantril, editor) Psychology, Humanism, and Scientific Inquiry: the Selected Essays of Hadley Cantril


1. F. P. Kilpatrick (November 1969) "Hadley Cantril – The Transactional Point of View", Journal of Individual Psychology 25: 219–25, reprinted as Epilogue, pages 229–34, in Albert H. Cantril, editor (1988) Psychology, Humanism and Scientific Inquiry, Transaction Books ISBN 0-88738-176-6
2. J. Michael Sproule (1997) Propaganda and Democracy, page 184, Cambridge University Press ISBN 0-521-47022-6
3. Hadley Cantril, Hazel Gaudet, and Herta Herzog (1940) The Invasion from Mars: A Study in the Psychology of Panic: with the Complete Script of the Famous Orson Welles Broadcast, Princeton University Press
4. Investigation of un-American propaganda activities in the United States. United States Government Printing Office. 1940. p. 3244. and a special consultant for the Office of the Coordinator of Inter- American Affairs
5. John Gray Geer (2004) Public opinion and polling around the world: a historical encyclopedia, Volume 1, ABC-CLIOISBN 9781576079119
6. Stuart Oskamp, P. Wesley Schultz (2005). Attitudes and Opinions. Routledge. p. 314. ISBN 0-8058-4769-3.
7. George Gallup (1969) "Hadley Cantril 1906 — 1969", Public Opinion Quarterly 33(3): 506 doi:10.1086/267731
8. "Lloyd A. Free, 88, is dead; Revealed Political Paradox", New York Times, November 14, 1996.
9. "Worldwide Propaganda Network Built by the C.I.A." New York Times, December 26, 1976
10. Understanding How Gallup uses the Cantril Scale from Gallup
11. Prospect for America: The Rockefeller Panel Reports. Doubleday. 1961.
• Hadley Cantril from Roper Center for Public Opinion Research
Site Admin
Posts: 36301
Joined: Thu Aug 01, 2013 5:21 am

Re: The CIA and the Media: How America's Most Powerful News

Postby admin » Fri Apr 01, 2022 11:31 pm

Video Transcript: Media Refuses to Retract their "Russian Disinformation" Lie Even as NYT & WP Authenticate the Emails
My latest update on one of the worst media disinformation campaigns in modern U.S. political history.
by Glenn Greenwald
Mar 31, 2022

The following is a full transcript (for subscribers only) from yesterday's episode of my System Update video program on Rumble: NYT & WP Confirm Biden Archive, Yet the Media Refuse to Retract their "Russian Disinformation" Lie. You can watch the program on the Rumble page at the link above, or watch the full episode on the player below:

Glenn Greenwald: Hey, everyone, this is Glenn Greenwald, welcome to a new episode of System Update here on our home on Rumble. Two weeks ago, the New York Times, which many people, not myself, but many people consider the paper of record, purported to confirm what has been obvious since at least the days before the 2020 election, namely that the laptop discovered by and reported on by the New York Post in the days leading up to the election, was not, in fact, Russian disinformation, as many, if not most, liberal corporate media outlets claimed in conjunction with the CIA and Big Tech prior to the election, but instead was authentic.

In fact, they did a variety of reporting in which they based their reporting on the emails in the archive, the key ones of which they stated they were able to fully authenticate. Now, just about six months ago, a reporter from Politico, Ben Schreckinger, published a book in which he provided ample proof of what the New York Times two weeks ago purported to confirm, namely that the key emails that triggered the controversy surrounding the Hunter Biden reporting that led to Big Tech censoring the New York Post, Facebook and Twitter, both censoring that story on the grounds that, according to the CIA and ex officials of the CIA and other security state agencies, it was Russian disinformation and therefore couldn't be trusted was in fact true, and in September I did a video right here on Rumble examining the evidence presented by this political reporter, which was completely dispositive.

He went and spoke with third parties who were on the email chains and was able was able to confirm and match the emails and other documents in their phones and computer that they received in real time that word for word matched the emails and other documents that were in the Hunter Biden archive that the New York Post was using to report. He obtained documents from governments, including the Swedish government that had been nonpublic that also match word for word the other key documents that were in the archive, and in his book, he basically essentially said that the the emails in the Hunter Biden laptop were not Russian and they were not disinformation. They were fully real and fully authentic.

Here from Politico, which is his employer. They published an article promoting the book by the reporter that was headlined “Double Trouble for Biden.” Part of it read:

Ben Schreckinger’s The Bidens: Inside the First Family’s Fifty-Year Rise to Power, out today, finds evidence that some of the purported Hunter Biden laptop material is genuine, including two emails at the center of last October’s controversy.

Now, this article downplays significantly the extent of those findings. I not only examine those findings and that September video I just showed you, and in an article I wrote at Substack accompanying the video, but what I also went through very systematically is that long before the Politico article was published, let alone before the New York Times purported to confirm that the emails were authentic, all the way back in October of 2020, there was already overwhelming evidence right from the beginning that these materials were authentic, and I went through the evidence.

Remember when I was reporting on them or trying to reported them at the time, I was with The Intercept, the media outlet that I co-founded in 2013. I was barred. I was censored by the senior editors at The Intercept, the outlet that I co-created from reporting on these materials. Based on the lie, the CIA lie that the materials were Russian disinformation and therefore they couldn't be verified. It was my own outlet and many, many others that lied to the public and said it was Russian disinformation and then used that lie, The Intercept did, to block me from reporting.

And that was when I quit in protest over being censored
because my contract at the time said that nobody could prevent me from publishing to the internet whatever I want to publish without any editorial interference. And that is what they did. They violated the contract because they were petrified.

Like most liberal outlets that also spread this lie, that this reporting would help Donald Trump win and Joe Biden lose because it sheds so much light not on what Hunter Biden was doing, but on what Joe Biden was doing in Ukraine, the country essentially over which he ruled as vice president for President Obama at the same time that his son, Hunter, was getting paid 50,000 dollars a month by a Ukrainian energy company called Burisma, and Hunter was attempting to induce his father to do favors for Burisma.

There's certainly evidence that he did, including getting rid of a prosecutor that was hostile to Burisma. But beyond that, there was a lot of evidence about the pursuit of business deals in China in which Joe Biden was going to be a profit participant.
Obviously, China was an important country for when Joe Biden was vice president and Joe Biden would have lot of power if he ever were elected president again, as most people expected, he would run and try and become president. And at the time, Hunter Biden and Joe Biden's brother were trading on Joe Biden's name not only to pursue deals for themselves in China, but also to generate profit for Joe Biden.

And the media was so afraid of this story that they spread this CIA lie, that these documents were Russian disinformation, something for which there was never any evidence, it was made up out of whole cloth by intelligence officials interfering in the American election with an outright lie. Big Tech seized on that lie that these materials are Russian disinformation in order to justify bending the story. It was an incredible disinformation campaign, probably one of the gravest in modern American history perpetrated by a union of Big Tech corporate media and the intelligence community designed to manipulate the outcome of the election.

And now, as I said, even though we have now, since the election is over, the major media outlets are reporting that proof that these materials are authentic all the way back then, I knew they were authentic. I'm somebody who has staked my career many times on authenticating large archives. I did that and the Snowden story that I reported in 2013. I did it again in 2019 with 18 month long investigative exposé based on a gigantic archive provided to me by my source that contained hacked telephone chats of top level Brazilian authorities that I had to authenticate before publishing.

I've done it many times while working with WikiLeaks. I know how these archives are authenticated. You go to third parties, people who got the emails in real time and you ask them to compare what they got to, what's in the archive and if word for word it's authentic as it was, you know, it's real. There are other indicia of authenticity that were there from the beginning. These media outlets knew they were lying when they said it was Russian disinformation, but they didn't care. They were willing to lie. They were eager to lie because they viewed not telling the truth and fulfilling journalistic responsibilities as their highest duty, but defeating Donald Trump in 2020 as their highest duty, even if it meant lying, which is exactly what they did.

So we have the evidence from the very beginning, from the start that I was willing to stake my entire journalistic reputation on it and others were as well because it was so obvious the archive was real. Then we have the Politico reporter publishing this book filled with information which media outlets just simply ignored. They pretended this didn't exist. It was a reporter from one of their own, a mainstream news outlet only Politico, his employer, even noted it in passing, downplaying it. But every other outlet that told this lie that these materials were Russian disinformation just ignored this book. Huffington Post, Politico Mother Jones, The Intercept one after the next that told this lie. CNN, MSNBC, they all just pretended this proof in this book didn't exist.

Then 10 days ago, when The New York Times published their article almost two weeks ago, now the headline of which was “Hunter Biden paid tax bill, but broad federal investigation continues” and it's an article, as you see there, on how broad the Justice Department criminal investigation into Hunter Biden is. It doesn't just include suspicions that he hid his taxes, but all kinds of potential illegalities and his international business deals. The New York Times, to tell the story had to rely on the emails in that archive, which only 14 months ago, most liberal corporate outlets were saying were fake were forged by the Russians. Here's what the New York Times said as to why they use the emails in that archive:

People familiar with the investigation said prosecutors had examined emails between Mr. Biden, Mr. Archer and others about Burisma and other foreign business activity.

“Those emails were obtained by The New York Times from a cache of files that appears to have come from a laptop abandoned by Mr. Biden in a Delaware repair shop.

So here they are, giving credence to the original story told by the New York Post about how they got the laptop, which was Hunter Biden brought it in to be repaired by Hunter Biden's own accounting, it was at a time when he was struggling with drug addiction. He was asked in interviews, Is it possible you just left your laptop there as they claim? And he said, Look, this was a long period in my life when I was dealing with addiction, when I wasn't exactly careful with my belongings. Of course, that's something an addict would do. And New York Times says these files appear to have come from that the laptop abandoned in that Delaware repair shop exactly what the New York Post said from the start.

But here's the key of what the New York Times acknowledged:

The email and others in the cache were authenticated by people familiar with them and with the investigation.

So the New York Times is now saying, The Paper of Record, just like the political reporter said, just like all the evidence before the election, that these emails were not Russian disinformation. They were authentic, and the New York Times has authenticated them. Now you would think, I guess, that when the New York Times, venerated as the Paper of Record themselves comes out and says we have authenticated the key emails, you would think that those outlets that publish those lies, that this is Russian disinformation, repeating that over and over and over again to discredit the reporting to justify the brute censorship by Big Tech, to save Joe Biden.

You would think they would feel an obligation to at least acknowledge the proof that the New York Times just offered that these materials were real and that therefore what they said about the archive was a lie. They didn't, not one media outlet. And even in the wake of that New York Times report, even acknowledge the existence of this proof, let alone retracted their lies, that's how much contempt they have for you and the public and their jobs as journalists, even when they got caught red handed lying, blatantly lying, spreading a CIA falsehood for which there was never any evidence, even when they got caught red handed doing that, they feel no compunction even about acknowledging the proof, let alone retracting it and admitting they spread a falsehood.

Because they see their job, they see their job as lying to protect the Democratic Party. That is really how they think. I worked within these newsrooms and with these newsrooms. That is how they think. And the proof is in the pudding. Now, the New York Times story from two weeks ago wasn't enough to make them retract. Today, we have the other most significant paper in their world, The Washington Post that went even further. They reported on Hunter Biden's quote, “Multimillion dollar deals with a Chinese energy company.”

When the New York Post first reported this story on October 14, 2020. Three weeks before the 2020 election, the first story they reported was about Joe Biden's business dealings in Ukraine on behalf of his son. The second story was about this, published the next day, October 15. Hunter Biden's multimillion dollar deals of the Chinese energy company and the relationship of Joe Biden to those deals, finally, the Washington Post on March 30th, 2020, with the election very safely over, finally reports on this and admits:

a Washington Post review confirms key details and offers new documentation of Biden family interactions with Chinese executives.

So in order to report on Joe Biden and Hunter Biden's activities in China, what The Washington Post did is the same thing the New York Times did. They used the emails on that laptop because they now are willing to admit they're authentic and not Russian disinformation, quote:

Over the course of 14 months, the Chinese energy conglomerate and its executives paid $4.8 million to entities controlled by Hunter Biden and his uncle, according to government records, court documents and newly disclosed bank statements as well as emails contained on a copy of a laptop hard drive that purportedly once belonged to Hunter Biden.

They're now using to do their reporting the same emails that Twitter and Facebook banned discussion of, that most of these corporate outlets, Biden said, were forged by the Russians. The Post goes on quote:

“The Post review draws in part on an analysis of a copy said to be of the hard drive of a laptop computer that Hunter Biden purportedly dropped off at a Delaware repair shop and never came to collect.”

“Biden aides and some former U.S. intelligence officials have voiced concern that the device may have been manipulated by Russia to interfere in the campaign.”

That's not what happened. I'll show you what happened in just a minute. These outlets and Joe Biden and Jen Psaki stated explicitly and emphatically, not that they had concern that the base may have been manipulated by Russia, they stated explicitly it was Russian disinformation, which was a complete and total lie. The Post goes on:

“On Capitol Hill, Democrats have dismissed earlier reports about Hunter Biden’s work in China as lacking credibility or being part of a Russian disinformation campaign.”

Do you see how any facts that interfere with, or undermine or subvert the Democratic Party's interest automatically now get labeled Russian disinformation?

“The Post analysis included forensic work by two outside experts who assessed the authenticity of numerous emails related to the CEFC matter.”

“In addition, The Post found that financial documents on the copy of Hunter Biden’s purported laptop match documents and information found in other records, including newly disclosed bank documents obtained by Sen. Charles E. Grassley of Iowa, a senior Republican on the Senate Finance and Judiciary committees.”

They ran a separate article in the post. “Here's how the Post analyzed Hunter Biden's laptop. Two experts confirm the veracity of thousands of emails.” And then they say, "but a thorough investigation was stymied by missing data” they couldn't confirm all of them, but they confirmed quote:

Thousands of emails purportedly from the laptop computer of Hunter Biden, President Biden’s son, are authentic communications that can be verified through cryptographic signatures from Google and other technology companies, say two security experts who examined the data at the request of The Washington Post.

Why didn't they do that before the election, when it actually mattered.
Now there's something going on because you have the New York Times, two weeks ago, on March 16th, now The Washington Post today coming out and saying we have confirmed the key emails, the controversial emails on Hunter Biden's laptop, they're not Russian disinformation. They are authentic. Let's remember what CNN did.

On October 17, 2020. So just a couple of weeks before the election, they invited on this man. James Clapper, who was President Obama's senior national security official, he was the director of national intelligence. Remember, James Clapper got caught red handed lying to the US Senate in 2013 when he went to testify and was asked by Senator Ron Wyden does the NSA collect dossiers on millions of Americans? And James Clapper looked at him in his face and said, “No, we don't, not wittingly.”

And that was when Edward Snowden, who had in his hands the proof that the US was spying on American citizens en masse, knew Clapper was lying and made the final decision to come forward
with that evidence because he couldn't let James Clapper get away with that lie. After James Clapper lied to the Senate. And we all know he lied. He wasn't fired. He wasn't prosecuted. He was kept on as President Obama's top national security official. The liar, the one who got caught lying, kept on by President Obama and then got hired by CNN, where he still works to deliver the news.

Remember when the CIA in the security state used to use clandestine methods to influence corporate news? Now they just right out in the open go to work in their newsrooms on their payroll
. This is who CNN has telling the news and listen to what he said. This congenital career trained liar, now working for CNN right before the election about the materials on Hunter Biden's laptop, just listen to what he said.

CNN: How much do the does the source matter here?

James Clapper: Well, source matters a lot, and the timing matters a lot, I think. And to me, this is just classic textbook Soviet Russian tradecraft at work. The Russians have analyzed the target. They understand that the president and his enablers crave dirt on Vice President Biden. Whether it's real or contrived, it doesn't matter to them. And so all of a sudden, two and a half weeks before the election, this laptop appears somehow and emails on without any metadata. It just it's all very curious. But so here you have a willing target, and the Russians are very sophisticated about how to exploit a willing target. And to me, that's what's at work here.

CNN: And so when you try to figure out the specifics of, you know, whether that meeting email, for example, is real in the midst of this, do you think stuff like that could just have been planted in there and be completely fake?

James Clapper: I do. I think the emails could be could be contrived, particularly since, as I understand it, from what I've read, they appear without any metadata that is from/to, any technical data at least immediately evident now if this computer is in the hands of the FBI. They have obviously excellent, sophisticated technical and forensic analytic capabilities, and I think they'll be able to sort it out, whether this is genuine or not. But, you know, it's all pretty curious, given again two and a half weeks out from the election.

Glenn Greenwald: Do you see what just cold blooded liars they are? Here you have a supposed journalist, at least that's her job title with this media corporation working in tandem with a former security state official who's now her colleague in a newsroom somehow. And they're both concocting a lie, a false claim out of nowhere, telling Americans to believe that this incriminating evidence that was forged by the Russians was fabricated and was fake. None of which was true.

They are right, the corporate media is the liberal wing of the corporate media, which is most of the corporate media, that there is a grave disinformation problem in the United States. The United States does indeed is indeed plagued by a very serious extreme problem of disinformation. What they're wrong about is the source of that disinformation, it doesn't come from QAnon or Facebook or teenagers on 4chan. It comes from them. These are the liars. These are the disinformation agents. You see it over and over. You hear what they just said is complete fabrications to help Joe Biden two weeks before the election.

Now here's CNN. Today, with The Washington Post story coming out, they didn't mention that, but also the New York Times story from two weeks ago, they suddenly decide to take seriously the Hunter Biden investigation now that Joe Biden is safely elected. Listen to what you hear now on CNN.

CNN: Just lay out your reporting here because this is very, very bad for the president's son.

Analyst: It is, and it's an investigation. As you pointed out, going back to 2018, and right now, prosecutors in Delaware are focusing on a number of things, including whether Hunter Biden and some of his business associates violated laws, including a tax and money laundering laws and foreign lobbying laws.

A lot of this has to do with Hunter Biden's time working with this company called Burisma, an energy company in Ukraine. He was getting paid as much as fifty thousand dollars a month for that company during a time that Joe Biden, his father was vice president, was in charge of handling Ukraine issues for the Obama administration.

And that, of course, raised questions of of a conflict. And so what we know is this investigation, you know, for a while, it has been going on and it seemed to not not a lot was going on. Until recently, a lot of activity has picked up, with no witnesses have gone in to talk to the grand jury in Delaware. We know of witnesses who are going in to talk to investigators in the next few weeks, so we know that there is a lot of activity now picking up. He's not been charged. Hunter Biden says that he committed no wrongdoing and that he says at the end of this, he believes he'll be cleared. But obviously, as you pointed out, this is a political mess for the sitting president to have his son being investigated by the Justice Department, his own Justice Department.

Glenn Greenwald: Oh, wow, wow. So I guess what they're saying is that Hunter Biden was engaged corruptly in Ukraine and being paid in order to exercise influence with his father, the former vice president and Democratic presidential frontrunner, to benefit companies that were paying Hunter Biden. It's amazing that just 14 months ago, the same network was telling you to disbelieve all of that, that it was all fake and forged. That it was fabricated by the Russians, it was Russian disinformation, Soviet tradecraft.

And now, when it doesn't matter anymore, they're willing to say that it's true.
Let me just show you beyond CNN, how aggressively and deliberately and shamefully these media outlets just lied and remember not one of them, not CNN, or any of the ones I'm about to show, you have even acknowledged all the proof that has emerged from Politico reporter from the New York Times, from The Washington Post that they lied.

Here is Huffington Post. This is what they published on October 20th, 2020, a couple of weeks before the election. They, I think, purported this to be some sort of like reporting video when it was just so plainly a Biden campaign ad masquerading as reporting filled with lies, lies. Listen to what The Huffington Post told their readers:

Do you hear this sinister music, the fact that there's only one side of the story presented, the fact that it's all designed to convince you to ignore the evidence that was reported by the New York Post and others because it's all Russian disinformation, as these honorable intelligence officials have said.

Here's what Mother Jones said quote “Giuliani and the New York Post are pushing Russian disinformation. It's a big test for the media. With its new Biden story, Murdoch's tabloid is a useful idiot for Vladimir Putin.” Do you see any caveats there? The Washington Post claimed they were saying that, Oh well, we might have some concerns that perhaps some of the emails up. No. Giuliani and the New York Post are pushing Russian disinformation, they're being useful idiots for Vladimir Putin. Here was the first reporter to break the story that the Biden archive was Russian disinformation. It was Natasha Bertrand, who at the time worked for Politico. Every time she lies, she gets promoted. She began at Business Insider. She was a heavy proponent of various Russiagate lies, including this fake nonexistent connection between Trump and Alfa Bank that she got her promoted to the Atlantic and MSNBC. Then she got promoted to Politico, where she told this lie. “Hunter Biden story is Russian disinformation, dozens of former intel officials say.”

Now the reality is that headline is a lie. The intelligence officials didn't say this story is Russian disinformation. They admitted in their letter that they had no evidence to believe that, that they just were using their experience and their intuition to say it seems like it has the hallmarks.
Like James Clapper said of Russian tradecraft in the hands of these lying reporters that got turned into something more definitive. Hunter Biden story is Russian disinformation. Here was The Huffington Post again, “more than 50 former Intel officials say Hunter Biden's snare smear smells like Russia.”

Here's the media outlet I to my great embarrassment, co-founded in 2013, which not only censored my own reporting on the story by saying it didn't meet their lofty, rigorous editorial standards because the email was likely Russian disinformation and couldn't be verified. Five days before I tried to publish my own story, this is the crap they publish.

The CIA stenography it was by James Risen, a former New York Times reporter. The Intercept was created to oppose the New York Times, and yet the editorial leaders of any of The Intercept higher New York Times reporters to control the newsroom because they're desperate for approval and popularity with other liberal media outlets. And they get it by hiring New York Times reporters and that they put in charge. And James Risen wrote the article: “We're not a democracy. Four years ago, the nation tumbled down the Trump rabbit hole. We've been lost in the dark so long it's hard to know which way is up.”

The The Intercept, this outlet that I co-founded at the height of the Snowden reporting was founded to be adversarial to the claims of U.S. security state agencies such as the CIA. It was created based in the awareness that the U.S. corporate media was far too interconnected with and deferential to the CIA, the Pentagon, the FBI, the NSA and just repeated their lies as we just saw repeatedly them doing. We were supposed to be adversarial, more critical, applying critical scrutiny. Look at what Jim Risen and the intercept editors did in their desperation to help Joe Biden win the election
, they were talking about this laptop quote:

Their latest falsehood once again involves Biden, Ukraine, and a laptop mysteriously discovered in a computer repair shop and passed to the New York Post, thanks to Trump crony Rudy Giuliani. The New York Post story was so rancid that at least one reporter refused to put his byline on it.

The U.S. intelligence community had previously warned the White House that Giuliani has been the target of a Russian intelligence operation to disseminate disinformation about Biden, and the FBI has been investigating whether the strange story about the Biden laptop is part of a Russian disinformation campaign.

This week, a group of former intelligence officials [the people we were supposed to be adversarial to, but instead they're now subservient to] issued a letter saying that the Giuliani laptop story has the classic trademarks of Russian disinformation.
(I separated the truth from Trump’s lies about Biden and the Ukraine in a piece last year.)

All things we know to be a complete and utter lie, as a result of the proof that exists at the time that has emerged since then. Do you think the intercept of the Huffington Post or Mother Jones of CNN or any of these other outlets have acknowledged any of this or retracted their story? Go look at these articles and see if you can find an editor's note on any of them saying that subsequent to the publication of our story, evidence emerged that what we said here is a lie and that these materials were fully authenticated from the start and had nothing to do with Russia, as we falsely told you.

That's what media outlets with integrity would do. They don't care about integrity, and so they don't do that.

A couple of weeks ago or actually last week in the wake of the New York Times story, my Substack colleague, Matt Taibbi published a story about the extraordinary, mass dropping moment that this is for the corporate media quote “The media campaign to protect Joe Biden passes the point of absurdity.” And he details in there using The Intercept as an example how editors is deliberately lied by claiming that this material was Russian disinformation when they had no reason to believe that other than the CIA told them to say it, quote:

Editors Betsy Reed and Peter Maass in October 2020 refused to publish a Greenwald piece unless he addressed the “complexity” of the ‘disinformation issue,’ with Reed condescendingly suggesting there was a lot of ‘in-house knowledge’ the Pulitzer winner could ‘tap into.’

By ‘in-house knowledge,’ Reed meant Robert Mackey and Jim Risen, two former New York Times reporters who’d already denounced the laptop story as conspiracy theory.

Intercept editors Reed and Maass not only effectively demanded that Greenwald run his copy by a pair of New York Times vets — odd for a site specifically launched as a counter to Times-style reporting — but chastised Greenwald for refusing to address the “earmarks of Russian disinformation” canard issued in a group letter of 50 of the exact same Bush and Obama-era intelligence officials who’d denounced the Snowden disclosures and had originally been the Intercept’s primary reporting targets.”

This is what went on in every newsroom. I promise you, I promise you. They knew this story was a lie. No one believed these documents were forged by Russia. Nobody. The CIA letter was designed to give them a way to tell this lie with a straight face, but the reason everybody knew it was a lie was because all the things we used as journalists to verify these documents were there from the beginning.

You had Tony Bobulinski and others on the email chain showing on their phone and computers. Look, here's the emails I received in real time. And they match exactly what's on this archive. Of course, the archive is authentic and genuine. They lied on purpose inside these newsrooms. They were desperate not to be perceived as helping Donald Trump. So now we have the proof. From multiple sources, including the outlets they claim are the most credible. The New York Times, The Washington Post, Politico.

How many news outlets have retracted this false story in the past year and a half now that the proof is available? Zero. Zero.

And you know what they won't, they never will. And I'll tell you why. These outlets do not see themselves as journalistic in nature. They don't these media corporations, they see themselves as activists for the Democratic Party. They have convinced themselves that Donald Trump is such a singularly threatening and unprecedentedly dangerous figure, essentially the return of Adolf Hitler, and that his supporters and movement behind him are basically the equivalent of neo-Nazis that everything and anything is justified to stop them from remaining in power or winning another election, including joining hands at the CIA to lie to abuse their journalistic platform to spread lies knowingly, and to work with Big Tech to censor any information that may undermine the Democratic Party.

This is who they are. Now, President Trump has called these people the enemy of the people. I would not use that phrase just because of its historical meaning, but I also would not tell people who do think that way that they're wrong. What else can you say about a group of people who work inside an industry whose function in their minds is to deceive and manipulate with lives in conjunction with the US security state designed to manipulate US politics domestically?

What else can you say about them besides the fact that they are an extremely malignant force that however much you distrust them, and polls showed they're at their record low of distrust, however much you distrust them and despise them, it is not enough. It's not enough.

This episode reveals once and for all who and what they really are. It's not just that they spread lies before the 2020 election is that even when their faces are rubbed in the dispositive proof that what they published was false, they just ignore it. They won't even acknowledge it, let alone retract it. That's how much contempt they have for you, for their journalistic duties, and for the truth.
Site Admin
Posts: 36301
Joined: Thu Aug 01, 2013 5:21 am

Re: The CIA and the Media: How America's Most Powerful News

Postby admin » Thu Feb 08, 2024 3:04 am

Public Relationships: Hill & Knowlton, Robert Gray,
and the CIA

by Johan Carlisle
Covert Action Quarterly
from the Spring 1993 issue of CAQ (Number44)

Public relations and lobbying firms are part of the revolving door between government and business that President Clinton has vowed to close. It is not clear how he will accomplish this goal when so many of his top appointees, including Ron Brown and Howard Paster, are "business as usual" Washington insiders. Ron Brown, who was a lobbyist and attorney for Haiti's "BabyDoc"Duvalier, is Clinton's Secretary of Commerce. Paster, former head of Hill and Knowlton 's Washington office, directed the confirmation process during the transition period and is now Director of Intergovernmental Affairs for the White House. After managing PR for the Gulf War, Hill and Knowlton executive Lauri J. Fitz-Pegado became director of public liaison for the inauguration.

The door swings both ways. Thomas Hoog, who served on Clinton's transition team, has replaced Paster as head of H&K's Washington office.

Hill and Knowlton is one of the world 's largest and most influential corporations. As such, its virtually unregulated status, its longstanding connections to intelligence agencies, its role in shaping policy, and its close relationship to the Clinton administration deserve careful scrutiny.

In Turkey, "in July 1991, the same month President George Bush made an official visit there, the body of human rights worker Vedat Aydin was found along a road. His skull was fractured, his legs were broken, and his body was riddled by more than a dozen bullet wounds. He had been taken from his home by several armed men who identified themselves as police officers. No one was charged with his murder." De- spite hundreds of such "credible reports" acknowledged by the State Department, documenting use of "high-pressure cold water hoses, electric shocks, beating of the genitalia, and hanging by the arms," Turkey reaps the benefits of U.S. friendship and Most Favored Nation status. "Last year Turkey received more than $800 million in U.S. aid, and spent more than $3.8 million on Washington lobbyists to keep that money flowing." Turkey paid for U.S. tolerance of torture with its cooperative role in NATO, and its support for Operation Desert Storm; it bought its relatively benign public image with cold cash. Turkey's favorite Washington public relations and lobbying firm is Hill and Knowlton (H&K), to which it paid $1,200,000 from November 1990 to May 1992. Other chronic human rights abusers, such as China, Peru, Israel, Egypt, and Indonesia, also retained Hill and Knowlton to the tune of $14 million in 1991-92. Hill and Knowlton has also represented the infamously repressive Duvalier regime in Haiti.

On October 10, 1990, as the Bush administration stepped up war preparations against Iraq, H&K, on behalf of the Kuwaiti government, presented 15-year-old "Nayirah" before the House Human Rights Caucus. Passed off as an ordinary Kuwaiti with firsthand knowledge of atrocities committed by the Iraqi army, she testified tearfully before Congress:

"I volunteered at the al-Addan hospital...[where] I saw the Iraqi soldiers come into the hospital with guns, and go into the room where 15 babies were in incubators. They took the babies out of the incubators, took the incubators, and left the babies on the cold floor to die."

Supposedly fearing reprisals against her family, Nayirah did not reveal her last name to the press or Congress. Nor did this apparently disinterested witness mention that she was the daughter of Sheikh Saud Nasir al-Sabah, Kuwait's ambassador to the U.S. As Americans were being prepared for war, her story- which turned out to be impossible to corroborate -became the centerpiece of a finely tuned public relations campaign orches- trated by H&K and coordinated with the White House on behalf of the government of Kuwait and its front group, Citizens for a Free Kuwait.

In May 1991, CFK was folded into the Washington-based Kuwait-America Foundation. CFK had sprung into action on August 2, the day Iraq invaded Kuwait. By August 10, it had hired H&K, the preeminent U.S. public relations firm. CFK reported to the Justice Department receipts of $17,861 from 78 individual U.S. and Canadian contributors and $11.8 million from the Kuwaiti government. Of those "do- nations," H&K got nearly $10.8 million to wage one of the largest, most effective public relations campaigns in history.

From the streets to the newsrooms, according to author John MacArthur, that money created a benign facade for Kuwait's image:
"The H&K team, headed by former U.S. Information Agency officer Lauri J. Fitz-Pegado, organized a Kuwait Information Day on 20 college campuses on September 12. On Sunday, September 23, churches nationwide observed a national day of prayer for Kuwait. The next day, 13 state governors declared a national Free Kuwait Day. H&K distributed tens of thousands of Free Kuwait bumper stickers and T-shirts, as well as thousands of media kits extolling the alleged virtues of Kuwaiti society and history. Fitz-Pegado's crack press agents put together media events featuring Kuwaiti "resistance fighters" and businessmen and arranged meetings with newspaper editorial boards. H&K's Lew Allison, a former CBS and NBC News producer, created 24 video news releases from the Middle East, some of which purported to depict life in Kuwait under the Iraqi boot. The Wirthlin Group was engaged by H&K to study TV audience reaction to statements on the Gulf crisis by President Bush and Kuwaiti officials. "

All this PR activity helped "educate" Americans about Kuwait -- a totalitarian country with a terrible human rights record and no rights for women. Meanwhile, the incubator babies atrocity story inflamed public opinion against Iraq and swung the U.S. Congress in favor of war in the Gulf.

This free market approach to manufacturing public perception raises the issue of:
whether there is something fundamentally wrong when a foreign government can pay a powerful, well-connected lobbying and public relations firm millions of dollars to convince the American people and the American government to support a war halfway around the world. In another age this activity would have caused an explosion of outrage. But something has changed in Washington. Boundaries no longer exist.

One boundary which has been blurred beyond recognition is that between "propaganda"-which conjures up unpleasant images of Goebbels-like fascists-and "public relations," a respectable white collar profession. Taking full advantage of the revolving door, these lobbyists and spinmeisters glide through Congress, the White House, and the major media editorial offices. Their routine manipulations -- like those of their brown shirted predecessors--corrode democracy and government policy. H&K's highly paid agents of influence, such as Vice President Bush's chief of staff Craig Fuller, and Democratic power broker Frank Mankiewicz, have run campaigns against abortion for the Catholic Church, represented the Church of Scientology, and the Moonies. They have made sure that gasoline taxes have been kept low for the American Petroleum Institute; handled flack for Three Mile Island's near-catastrophe; and mishandled the apple growers' assertion that Alar was safe. They meddle in our political life at every turn and apparently are never held accountable. Not only do these PR firms act as foreign propaganda agents, but they work closely with U.S. and foreign intelligence agencies, making covert operations even harder to control.

In the 1930s, Edward Bernays, the "father of public relations," convinced corporate America that changing the public's opinion--using PR techniques -- about troublesome social movements such as socialism and labor unions, was more effective than hiring goons to club people. Since then, PR has evolved into an increasingly refined art form of manipulation on behalf of whoever has the large amounts of money required to pay for it. In 1991, the top 50 U.S.-based PR firms billed over $1,700,000,000 in fees. Top firms like Hill and Know- lton charge up to $350 per hour.

PR firms manipulate public and congressional opinion and government policy through media campaigns, congressional hearings, and lobbying. They have the ability and the funds to conduct sophisticated research for their clients and, using inside information, to advise them about policy decisions. They are positioned to sell their clients access and introductions to government officials, including those in intelligence agencies. Robert Keith Gray, head of Hill and Knowlton's Washington office for three decades, used to brag about checking major decisions personally with CIA director William Casey, whom he considered a close personal friend.

One of the most important ways public relations firms influence what we think is through the massive distribution of press releases to newspapers and TV newsrooms. One study found that 40 percent of the news content in a typical U.S. newspaper originated with public relations press releases, story memos, or suggestions. The Columbia Journalism Review, which scrutinized a typical issue of the Wall Street Journal, found that more than half the Journal's news stories "were based solely on press releases." Although the releases were reprinted "almost verbatim or in paraphrase," with little additional reporting, many articles were attributed to "a Wall Street Journal staff reporter."

While some PR campaigns are aimed at the general pub- lic, others target leadership, either to persuade them or to provide them with political cover. On November 27, 1990, just two days before the U.N. Security Council was to vote on the use of military force against Iraq, while the U.S. was extorting, bullying, and buying U.N. cooperation, Kuwait was trying to win hearts, minds, and tear ducts. "Walls of the [U.N.] Council chamber were covered with oversized color photographs of Kuwaitis of all ages who reportedly had been killed or tortured by Iraqis. ...A videotape showed Iraqi soldiers apparently firing on unarmed demonstrators, and witnesses who had escaped from Kuwait related tales of horror. A Kuwaiti spokesman was on hand to insist that his nation had been `an oasis of peaceful harmony' before Iraq mounted its invasion." This propaganda extravaganza was orchestrated by Hill and Knowlton for the government of Kuwait. With few exceptions, the event was reported as news by the media, and two days later the Security Council voted to authorize military force against Iraq.


The government's use of PR firms in general, and Hill and Knowlton in particular, goes beyond ethically dubious opinion manipulation. It includes potentially illegal proxy spying operations for intelligence agencies. "H&K recruited students to attend teach-ins and demonstrations on college campuses at the height of the Vietnam War, and to file agent-like reports on what they learned," according to author Susan Trento. "The purpose was for H&K to tell its clients that it had the ability to spot new trends in the activist movement, especially regarding environmental issues." Richard Cheney (no relation to former Secretary of Defense Cheney), head of H&K's New York office, denied this allegation. He said that H&K recommends that its clients hire private investigative agencies to conduct surveillance and intelligence work. But, Cheney admitted, "in such a large organization you never know if there's not some sneak operation going on."

Former CIA official Robert T. Crowley, the Agency's long-time liaison with corporations, sees it differently. "Hill and Knowlton's overseas offices," he acknowledged, "were perfect `cover' for the ever-expanding CIA. Unlike other cover jobs, being a public relations specialist did not require technical training for CIA officers." The CIA, Crowley admitted, used its H&K connections "to put out press releases and make media contacts to further its positions. ...H&K employees at the small Washington office and elsewhere, distributed this material through CIA assets working in the United States news media." Since the CIA is prohibited from disseminating propaganda inside the U.S., this type of "blowback"- which former CIA officer John Stockwell and other researchers have often traced to the Agency-is illegal. While the use of U.S. media by the CIA has a long and well-documented history, the covert involvement of PR firms may be news to many. According to Trento:
"Reporters were paid by the CIA, sometimes without their media employers' knowledge, to get the material in print or on the air. But other news organizations ordered their employees to cooperate with the CIA, including the San Diego-based Copley News Service. But Copley was not alone, and the CIA had `tamed' reporters and editors in scores of newspaper and broadcast outlets across the country. To avoid direct relationships with the media, the CIA recruited individuals in public relations firms like H&K to act as middlemen for what the CIA wanted to distribute.

This close association and dependence upon the intelligence community by reporters has created a unique situation which has shielded PR executives and firms from closer scrutiny by the media and Congress. According to Trento, "These longstanding H&K intelligence ties and CIA-linked reporters' fears that Gray might know about them might partially explain why Gray has escaped close media examination, even though he was questioned about his or his associates' roles in one major scandal after another during his long Washington career."

Over the years, Hill and Knowlton and Robert Gray have been implicated in the BCCI scandal, the October Surprise, the House page sex and drug scandal, Debategate, Koreagate, and Iran-Contra. In October 1988, three days after the Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI) was indicted by a federal grand jury for conspiring with the Medellin Cartel to launder $32,000,000 in illicit drug profits, the bank hired H&K to manage the scandal. Robert Gray also served on the board of directors of First American Bank, the Washington D.C. bank run by Clark Clifford (now facing federal charges) and owned by BCCI. Gray was close to, and helped in various ways, top Reagan officials. When Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger's son needed a job, Gray hired him for $2,000 a month. "And when Gray's clients needed something from the Pentagon, Gray and Co. went right to the top." Gray also helped Attorney General Ed Meese's wife, Ursula, get a lucrative job with a foundation which was created by a wealthy Texas client, solely to employ her.


Robert Keith Gray, who set up Hill and Knowlton's important Washington, D.C. office and ran it for most of the time between 1961 and 1992, has had numerous contacts in the national and international intelligence community. The list of his personal and professional associates includes Edwin Wilson, William Casey, Tongsun Park (Korean CIA), Rev. Sun Myung Moon, Anna Chennault (Gray was a board member of World Airways aka Flying Tigers), Neil Livingstone, Robert Owen, and Oliver North.
"Most of the International Division [of Gray & Co.] clients," said Susan Trento, "were right-wing governments tied closely to the intelligence community or businessmen with the same associations."

In 1965, with Gray's help, Tongsun Park, had formed the George Town Club in Washington. According to Trento:

Park put up the money and, with introductions from Gray and others, recruited "founders" for the club like the late Marine Gen. Graves Erskine, who had an active intelligence career. Anna Chennault became a force in the club. Others followed, and most, like Gray, had the same conservative political outlook, connections to the intelligence world, or `congressional overtones.' Gray's ties to right-wing Asians like Chennault and Park had deep roots. Gray had been critical of Eisenhower [when he was appointments secretary for Eisenhower] for never being partisan enough. Perhaps that is why Gray embraced wholeheartedly the powers behind the China Lobby. One reason Gray was attached to the lobby was that they had long been behind the funding of Richard Nixon's various campaigns.

Tongsun Park was an "agent of influence," trained by the Korean intelligence agency, which was created by and is widely regarded as a subsidiary of the CIA. The George Town Club has served as a discrete meeting place where right-wing foreign intelligence agents can socialize and conduct business with U.S. government officials.

Robert Gray has also been linked with former CIA and naval intelligence agent Edwin Wilson, although Gray denies it. In 1971, Wilson left the CIA and set up a series of new front companies for a secret Navy operation-Task Force 157. Wilson says that Robert Gray "was on the Board [of Directors]. We had an agreement that anything that H&K didn't want, they would throw to me so that I could make some money out of it, and Bob and I would share that."


Gray's connection to Iran-Contra has never been fully examined. Notably, the Tower Commission, Reagan's official 1986 investigation, all but ignored it. In 1983, Texas Senator John Tower had declined to seek reelection thinking he had a deal with Reagan to become Secretary of Defense. After Weinberger decided to stay on in the second Reagan term, Tower found himself without a job. In 1986, his friend Robert Gray offered him a position on the board of directors of Gray and Co. Shortly thereafter, Tower was asked to head the presidential inquiry. Not suprisingly, the Tower Commission kept Gray and Co. out of the investigation, in spite of the facts that several key players in the scandal had worked for Gray and Co., and Gray's Madrid office was suspected of involvement in the secret arms shipments to Iran.

Despite large gaps in the official inquiry, it has been established that Robert Owen, Oliver North's messenger and bagman, worked for Gray and Co. after leaving then-Senator Dan Quayle's staff in 1983. Owen worked primarily with Neil Livingstone, a mysterious figure who claims to be a mover and shaker in the intelligence world but who is described as a "groupie." Livingstone worked with Ed Wilson, Air Panama, and as a front man for business activities sponsored by the CIA and Israeli intelligence. Owen and Livingstone traveled frequently to Central America to meet with the Contras in 1984. An interesting footnote to Iran-Contra is that in 1986, Saudi Arabian arms broker Adnan Khashoggi hired Hill and Knowlton and Gray and Co. to milk maximum publicity out of his major donation to a $20.5 million sports center, named after him, at American University.


The pattern of influence peddling and insider abuse is clear. The potential for real reform is less obvious. Despite his stated intention to restrict the influence of lobbyists and PR manipulation, Clinton's reforms are viewed with cynical amusement by those in the know. Although newly restricted from directly lobbying their former agencies, retiring government officials can simply take jobs with PR firms, sit at their desks, and instruct others to say "Ron, or Howard, sent me." Nor does the updated Foreign Agents Registration Act have real teeth. The act --legislated in 1938 when U.S. PR firms were discovered working as propagandists and lobbyists for Nazi Germany-is rarely enforced. While it requires agents of governments to register, it omits requirements for agents of foreign corporations, who often serve the same interests.

And if loopholes for lobbying are comfortably large, public relations activities remain totally unregulated and unscrutinized by any government agency. Given the power and scope of PR firms, their track records of manipulation, their collusion with intelligence agencies, and their disregard for the human rights records and corporate misdeeds of many of their clients, this lack of oversight endangers democracy. Careful regulation, stringent reporting requirements, and government and citizen oversight are essential first steps in preventing these giant transnationals from functioning as a virtual fourth branch of government.
Site Admin
Posts: 36301
Joined: Thu Aug 01, 2013 5:21 am


Return to A Growing Corpus of Analytical Materials

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests