Created: 3/10/1986

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meg greenfield editor of the editorial page the washingtonh..

dear meg:

i would appreciate you running the following in your 'letters to the editor" section.

there are only three accurate parts of the washingtonarch story entitled "cia deputy chief mcmahon resigns." these are:

-- john mcmahon resigned as deputy olrector of central intelligence; the picture is indeed of mr. mcmahon;

deputy director for intelligence, br. robert gates, has been nominated by the president to succeed mcmahon.

numerous allegations against mr. mcmahon contained in the rest of the post's story are false. notably:

-- the post implies that mr. mcmahon retired because an "interagency group in charge of covert operations decidedignificant escalation of fotr parmUiUryhat is incorrect. as mr. mcmahon said and as the white house's announcement of mr. mcmahon's resignation stated, he retired for purely personal reasons. the post leads its readers to believe that its "anonymous" sources know mr. mcmahon's nind better than he does.

Meg Greenfield Page 2


The POST asserts that "the departure oflears the wayore activist policy of CIA intervention that this Agency's Director, William J. Casey, has been promoting." As you should be aware, whatever administration Is in power--Pres1dent Reagan's in thisforeign policy, not the Central Intelligence Agency. The CIA's functions are to collect, analyze and disseminate Information on foreign policy developments to those who do makePresident and his National Securityto assist them in the decisionmaking process. Mr. Casey is an advisor to the NSC, but isoting member. CIA alsoharged with conducting counterintelligence overseas and undertaking such other activities as the President nay direct. Each decision by the President to task CIA with such activities, sometimes referred to as coverts reported to the oversight committeesongress withinours. Since the CIA does not, as the POST suggests, have its own foreign policy, Mr. McMahon's presence or departure from the Agency will nottself decide the course. foreign policy.

According to the POST, "McMahon opposed. involvement in Third World conflicts." Nothing could be further from the truth. As Mr. McMahon has stated,upport the President's policies in Afghanistan, Nicaragua and the Third World at large and execute his directives to the fullest extent." Congressional testimony makes clear that Mr. McMahon is not discontent with the President's policieshese areas as the POST and others have alleged; he has, in fact,trong supporter of these policies.

-- The POST reportsobby has taken credit for Mr. McMahon's resignation. laimisinformed and misguided group is absurd and deserves no further comment.

I could go on, but enough said.

Itityistinguished Agency offfcer and public servant who has givenears of his life in outstanding service of his country should be so maligned when he regretfully retires for truly personal reasons.


George V. Lauder Director, Public Affairs

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