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Richard Helms

As Director of Central

As Director of Central Intelligence

Robert M. Haihaway and

Russell Jack Smilh

History Staff Center for the Study of Intelligence Centra! Intelligence Agency




elation* Wiih ihe White


elmCs Manage me at Style:

Indnchma and OperaiiOM

ChapterU Chilean Presidential

Chapterefectors ind Hostile

Chapter ft The Israeli

Chapterelations With

Chipttf X

he Dismissal of Richard

Editor's Preface

In UK autumnhe Director of Central Intelligence. William I.roposed that ihe recently reeiuNisbrd History Stallistory ol lhe tenure ol his distinguished predecessor, Richard Helms. On laking office earlier that year. Director Casey had read and round useful previous HUtocy Stall studiesormeraller Bedell Smith by Ludwrllnd Allen Dulles by Wasncr Caseythe late Johnartime OSS colleague who was ihcn tctving as his special assistant, to arrange foi Ihis study with (he new Chief of Ihe History Staff -the presenthad joined CIA inohn Dross arranged meetings with Richard Helms and R. lack Smith (who had served as Helms'* Deputy Director for Intelligence) to plantuds

John Bros*tudy whose chapters would each focus onlhat had demanded Richardpecial attention as(he chapter (opto thatroposed, wiih Helms'*undergone some evolution, (he work as now completed largelyBtoss's original outline. From the outset it has been organized asstudy and nolomprehensive narrative history ofsixalf years as DCI. This work has lllllc to say, forabout the new and growing Directorate of Science andI-or most of Helms'* tenure the DSAT was led by Carlwhom Helms delegated very large authority In an area that wa*outside his own experience and expertise Although Iheno new overhead reconnaissance projects while Helms wasimportant project* thai were already under way came intoaccounts of these and otherchievement* in thisbe found In two top-secret codeword

volume The Direcioiale for Science undHistorynd Donald Wclzenbach'i History of the Directorate of<

Although initially each chapter was io be writtenormer officer who had personal knowledge of it* topic, the work as approved innd now completed divides the chapters between foimcr DDI Jack Smith and Robert Hathaway ol the History Staff. As these author, produced draftt became evident that thetr contributions differed substantially in documentation, style, and point of view. Jack Smith, who had hi* own experience and recollections of the period, relied more heavily onwith liis former chief, Richard Helms, and his colleagues, than on

ihe documentary record. Moreover, he mil surprisingly reveals sirong view* on some ol" the issues he Ircats. Kobcn Hathaway, who joined CIA and ihe History2rofessional historian, made extensive use ol Ihe Agency's records in addition lo his interviews or Mi. Helms and the Officers who served under him. The present wriier, as ihe editor responsible for preparing this work fur publication, has undertaken to shape the two sets of draft chaptersingle cohesive study, while preserving in each chapter us far as possible the principal author's style, structure, and interpretation Although each chapter's original aulhur is noted under its title, the reader should be aware lhat Ihe editor has subjected all the oiigi-nal drafts lo considerable revision, including deputy chief histoiian Mary McAuliffe's work onnd siaff historian Nicholas Cullather's revision ofnd 3.

Russell lack Smith, the principal author of four of the work's nine chapters, look. from Miami University of Ohio,h.D. in English literature from Cornell Universitynd taught at Williams College before joining the Office of Strategic Servicesfter the war he continued his intelligence career in the Central Intelligence Group and Central Intelligence Agency and became Deputy Director for Intelligence|


tic retiredn hisv Three Decades Willi ihe Agency (Washington:. Jack Smilh offers more personal accountsumber ol ihe issues und events he treats in this present study.

Robert M. Hathaway, the principal author of five of ihe work'slook BA. and MA. degrees from Wake Forest University and his Ph.D. in hisiory at the University of North Carolina. Chapel Hill,fler service in (he US Army, he laughl at Middlcbury College and Barnard College of Columbia University before joining CIA and ihe History Staffe left CIA in6 to join the professional staff of the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee. His booksAmbiguous Partnership; Britain andNew Yoik: Columbia University, which won1 Truman Book Award, and Great Britain and the United Stales: Special Relations Since World War II (Boston:.

Some acknowledgements and thanks are inhall always be grateful for the friendship and counsel of John Bross. who launched the study, helped it on its way, andeen interest in it right up to the lime of his death inichard Helms himself has been extraordinarily helpful and generous in making lime for the manythe study required. This volume hasong time in preparation, and wc thank him for his patience. Wc are also grateful to all those in ihe History Staff, Office of Current Production and Analytic Support, and Printing and Photography Group who helped put this volume into print



Relations With the White House

Robert M. Hallutwuy

In practicalirector of Central Imc licence has one and only one bow. the PreudeM of the Ufa ledCI has io respond io ihe concerns of oihcr Washington player* as well: Ihe Seerelaries of Slate and Defense. Ihe President's National Sccuniy Advis.ii. the members ot the UScc*rtrnuruty. and strategically placed legislators tn the Congrcvv But compWvxl lo his relation, svidt the occupant of ihe Oval Office, hist othcis nafc into inCI in frequent contact wilh and fully sup-purled hy Ihs President will have few equals inis influence on the rulemaking procesvirector lacking entry into the inner-mow cudes of Ihe White House quickly findsmatter how well-infonncd his sources or accurate his intelligence- isolated from thecentral decisions. His warnings and advice will fall unnoticed into the vast wask-Nn of rejected and ignored rncmcrartdums Washingion daily spew, out

As Director of Central Intelligence, Richard Helms served under two of the most complex and controversial Presidents in the nation'sLyndon Johnvvn and Richard Nixoa.

In the case of tohnton. Helms was dealingongtime member of the Washington political establishment who was alsn monumentally insecure within that establishment- One of the most effective majorityever tohe United Stales Senate. Johnson eniered the White House after John Kennedy's assassination, determined torogram of reform lhal would rival in scope Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal. will, he found himself swept uponflagration far from Americanar that would eventually doom his Great Society and drive him oul of the White House.

liii successoran even more beset hy inner demons. Historians will long puzzle over Richard Nixon's psychological makeup, but it is arguable that no more tortured individual had entered the W'hilc House in ihe two hundred years of the nation's existence Mcanspimcd and

withdrawn, an unlovable man who desperately craved acceptance.more than Lyndonthose around lutn or secretly laughing at him. Neither mun proved an easy boss lo work for. Bach men came to build aroundrotective shield of advisers to fillet out unwelcome or unwantedAnd yel in many respect* Richard Helms'* espeiiences wilh each were siark opposite! The lint of these Presidents bestowed onosition of trust and influence, while the second usually regarded Helms with the distrust the besieged accords someone mi the other side of the ramparts.

Richard Helms and Lyndon Johnson

According lo Richard Helms, his success with President Johnson largely arose out of one dramatic coup. For the first threealf yean of his presidency Johnson had never found much use for intelligence His relations with IX'I John McCone. whom he had inherited from Kennedy, gradually souredhe point where NtcConc found resignation preferable to being ignored. McConc's successor, reined VAdm William Raborn, never canto close tntrong voice for ihen the White House Within months nf his appointment, (he White House nnd others recognized thai selecting Raborn as DTI hadistake, and in6 he was replaced by Helms. In his first year. Helms also failedake much of an impression on President Johnson, who wasiburck-ncd by domestic controversy and overseas emit.

All this changed in tare May and earlyuvi as Helms was completing his first year as Director. CIA successes just before and dunng Israel's Six-Day Wjr dramatically enhanced the prestige of theand of lis(he eyes of President Johnson. The details of this episode are described elsewhere In this study's examination of CIA's relations with Israel while Helms was DCI. Suffice it to say here that some wonderfully accurate CIA prognostications concerning the timing,and outcome of7 war swept Helms into Lyndon Johnson'scircle of advisers, where he remained for the rest of Johnson's term of office

Lyndon Johnson's White House, membership in ihe Presidential inner circle meant joining in the Tuesday luncheons, and. for Ihe balance of the Johnson presidency, Helms attended these functions regularly. As Helms ricveiihes il, his role at thesepersonal device

for gathering about him ihc people in whom he had confidence-was to provide corrective intelligence information and judgments whenever one ofthe other participants appeared to gei off track.

He new said Urn. lo me.ot ihe distinct Impression lhat the reasonmy presence wa,ept the gamehen Rosdout onwould advocate X. or Earto Wheeler,

ihe Chairman of the JCS. would be too upheld,ould comend ,av "This is ihe way wr undeistand It. and lhe bets are as Ihis constantly. So ilseful role for no doubt aboutent lo Uuan.Presidenient to (tod-know* where on the* various conferences on Vietnam. Anddellol Of work to do. bul IK just liked having mi- around, siiimg iheie.

Silling there, keeping the game honest: this was an ideal situation for an intelligence officer, to sii beside lhe Presideni of lhe United States with an open invitationpeak up whenever facts or judgments contrary to the best available Intelligence made their appearance

Richard Helms was extremely careful not to abuse tins position of trust, not to overstep his bounds as an intelligence officer. He went tolengths to avoid being involved in the policy debate, and. regard-less of his- persona) opinions, he refrained from advocating one policy over another unless directly asked by the Presideni (as sometimese did this not out of mere caution or self-protcction. but rather outwn deep convictions about Ihc proper role of intelligence.eliever that the Director of Central Intelligence, as Ihe principal intelligence officer to the President, should nol be involved in foreign policy except to ihc extent that the piescntation of any intelligence materialresident is inype of policye has explained.on't thinkresident to have all the people surrounding him involved in policy issues."'

Helms had airivcd at this conviction in pan by observing ihc lessperformance of John McCone. "McCone believed that he could wear two hats. One hat was as Director of the Agency and Ihe presenter Of intelligence information lhat the Agency produced. The other, that he could sit at meeiings and help to formulate the policy thai the administration ought to follow,'" Helms nol agree withe laconically

rhm. .iwrview.jwdtag.pril

..ndhe interview- eoadocttd lor thisike CIAutt

. Mchm. laKTview. Smith, unc>"II


Relations With ihe While Home Instead, he remained silent except when one of <hc policy officers siiayed beyond ihe limn* of reality a* indicated by Agency information and judgment. He fell lhal he souk)ore useful role

by veeinp to i< Ihu Ihe Seeieiary of Slaie or Dclcnse. or whoever was ail vocaiing whatever Ihey were advneauag. stayed with Use acceptable 1mm* of the facts as we knew Arm. the parameter* of evewt* ilal had*seful (unction lo perform for ihe Presidcm Hecausr every Carnnet officer, in advocaiing policies, whether iheolicy or not. is cod' iianity tempted to overdrive and lo oversell,ver peon id* Often the degree so whicheing done gen lost sightijstr ihai use Hwrlli-fence duetotelay ia keening these things in perspective, kccrnnf llie perception* as accurale und as ohjcvlivc as possible'

His rnernbetvhip in ihe White House inner coterie did not necessarily vhirld Richard Helms from presidential disapproval on occasion.ere difficult, contentious times. The war in Vietnam produced sharpof opinion and raised sensitivities io adverse public opinion to very high kveb Foe instance. Lyndon John vonamful to have figure* ol the civilian casualties caused by US bombing aired.enior Agency officer, while briefing the Senate Armed Services; Committee, wasuestion out of Ihe blue about casualties inflicted on North Vietnam's civilian population dunng USAF bombing attacks The CIA officer provided such figures as he could Several days later Helms happened lo be walking through the While House arcade between the Mansion and the President's Oval Office. Lyndon Johnson, walkinglook Helms by the arm and saidatherly tone. 'Now. if you fed any urge to go up and testily in Congress on this whole question of civilian casualties inust hope you'll pass by andrink with me ihe afternoonelms, of course, promised he would He later said of the incident. "This was his way ofessage lo me thai he wanted to have something to say about this. It was done pointedly bul nolt his morning meeting the next day. Helms told ihe DDI of the President's sensitivity lo North Vietnamese civilian casualty figures and instructed all clement* in the Agency to avoid the subject' Although one can under viand the DCI's wish lo accommodate the ('resident, in rctrospecl one must wonder whether (he Agency could legitimately avoid or ignore evidence of civilian casualties in reporting on the war in Vietnam Lyndon Johnson was not always so gentle, and on two occasion, tn the firsi month thai Helms was DCI the Presidenl had expressed hisof certain CIA actions in loud, wrathful tones. "He was very

'Morning Meeting MhMUfc Jl7


vociferous with mcas very vociferous rightelms later recalled, and continued

Aftereveiociferous conversation with President tohnsonhink be figured thai taking me on that way waa not my useful, aad thai If he warned to talk to me he did It differentoni then on. we aescr had my noisy oonhilh eacho shouting hack and forth.*

While it isoociferous President lohnson. it is difficult lo imagine the austere and controlled Richard Helms shouting hack. Ncs'cttheless. these exchanges in the summerombined wiih Helms'* performance during the7 Arab-Israeli war, cvidenllyIhc Prcsidenl's confidence and respect in him ns DCI. Helmsthat altet the initial altercations his relationship with Johnson was excellent "He didn't badgeras well treated by him ""

hnson'i penchant fur informal policy discussions such as tbe Tuesday luncheons, and his tendency io buttonhole opponents and urge them to "sit down and reason togetherne might assume that he preferred to receive his intelligence information through oral briefings Richard Helms quickly discovered, in part by observing John McCone as DCI, thai ihis was nol true When Johnson first became President, McCone hadrogram of daily briefings. As Helms remembers il, Johnson "finally got bored, closed the door, and thai was the end. He just didn't want to do it any more. You couldn't make htm do il anyor Helms the implications were obvious. "This oneon-onc. thai people who live in acadcmia hold to be so important, docs not necessarily achieve your objective You either adjust your production io the man you have in office or you're going to miss the train***

Thus, while President Johnson found Informal discussion within small groups highly useful, he shied away from formal presentations and prolonged briefings It was clear to Helms that "Johnson was much better at reading documents The way to get his attention was toell-reasoned, well-written piece ofelms enjoyed his first realwith Johnson largely through the Board of National Estimates' shoit analysis controverting an alarmist Israeli intelligence estimate inhis success encouraged Helms iooften as several times amemorandums containing infoimation pertinent to the Presidenicurrent concerns. Lyndon Johnsonoracious reader who kept several news ticker* operating just outside hi* office door, regularly tearing off long swatches to scan, and he found himself well served by tbe

' "Km IW?



Wuh ihe While House

DCI's steady flow of brief, sharply poinlol pieces. They provided aund written basis for the comments Helms made "to keep the game honest" during informal policy meeting*

These same presidential preferences dictated Helms'* modus npr-randi al National Security Council meetings. During the Eisenhowerwhen many NSC customs and practice* were institutional]red. the Director of Central Intelligence, thoughtatutory member of the body,egular participant in its deliberations. Allen Dulles would always present an intelligence briefing and relished these opportunities to intermingle Juicy tidbits of intelligence with more solid substantive material. Underennedy. National Security Council meetings were mostly formaleld only sporadically. When they were held. John McCone usuallyober account of the world's problems as seen through the eyes of CIA and its Director.

Richard Helms attempted to carry on this tradition once he became DCI byurvey of the worldminulc briefing. He found thatradon lohrrson thisistake

With Presidentinally camebc conclusion thatad lohould gel into (her ateconds,ad oo my feel- Because after lhat he was nustuag button* lor coffee or Fresea.usk, or talking tu MTNinura. othispennr. nere or whispcrinr.od lost my piincipal audience,'"

The adjustment made for Johnson con si sledteady stream of short, crisp papers combined with attendance at the Tuesday luncheons

One must be careful not to place tonlow on the relationship between Helms and Johnson Many commentators have noted the inherent conflict between sophisticated intelligence, which is apt to sec many sidesuestion, and the needs of decisionmakers, who must often ignore shadings and ambiguities in decidingingle course of action. The lastolicymaker wishes lo hear is why bis pre!erred course ofmay not work, but thai is precisely ihe service timely intelligence often provides. Lyndon Johnson has left usemorable quotation with respect to this spoiling role intelligence often plays. "Policy making is likeathe President remarked on one occasion. "You see the milk coming oui. you press more nnd ihe milk bubbles and flows, and just as ihe bucket is full, the cow with its tail whips the bucket and all is .pilled. Thai's what CIA does to policy

During the Johnson years, CIA played the cow's tail repeatedly on matters pertaining to the war In Southeast Asia. Helms's Agency again and again produced intelligence analyses that conflicted wilh the optimistic line


"Henry DnnJiw, IVnrii'iin<Xf" York; Di-Melay..

the While House look on the progress of the war. Johnson's response was not io change course, but to ignore what his intelligence experts were telling him. As administration policy became more and more beleaguered, the White House decisionmaking process became an exceptionally closedwith discouraging intelligence rcpoiu and analyses excluded fiom any role in policymaking. So while il is undoubtedly Hue that Johnson found it useful to have Helms close al hand, (his docs not mean thai lhe While Houseaccorded the products of Helms'* Agency the respect or voice this might imply. In certain importantost notably onhe war in Indochina. Johnson seems to have divorced Helms from the OA. valuing the former evenhe chose lo ignore ihe latter

Richard Helms and Richard Nixon

Compared to what followed, however, the Johnson years seemolden era of President-DCI. White House-CIAarning that this favorable situation would soon end was sounded on8 when President Johnson announced thai he would not seek reelection Helmsersonal note lo Lii) expressing his keen regret over this

Immediately afier Richard Nixon's electoral triumph inohnson called Helms lo the White House lo meet the President-elect. At thisJ informed hi* DCI lhal slatting immediately Helms was to make CIA's entire output of reporting andthat Ilo Nixon. Since ihc Nixonhadt it* campaign headquarter* at Ihr Pierre Hotel in New York until Inauguration Day. CIA had to setecure Agency outpost where the ultrasensitive daily and weekly periodicals as well as numerous codeword studies could be transmitted electronic all) Helmseam to New York and over lhe weekend these officer*aulted, secure area in the basement of the American Bible Societyhortfrom the Pierre Hotel. On lhe following Monday CIA materialsto flow to New York for the use of President-elect Nixon and National Security Assistant-designate Henry Kissinger."

F.ven before Nixon's inaugural ion, Helms leceivcd disturbingthat his wouldar less favoicd position under the new President lhan il had been under Johnson. liurly presidential ideas on organizing the national security function envisioned excluding the DCI from National

ull WteAtwUlM in ihr Prcudrnl fin Nauooal Sccurily Aims



Security Council meetings. Nixon backedm thii cxUCntc position before it whs implemented, when tin* new Secretary of Delrnse. Mel Lain! interceded on Hclnis's behalf Nevertheless, in the curly clays ot his ail ministration Niton allowed Helms lo attend NSC meetings only lo offer tactualfter which he excused the DCI from ibc roomardness ol this situation was immediately obvious in the NSC. and after mx weeks ot so the DCI was permitted to remain throughout the meeting.

Henry Kissinger's memoirs suggest one reason behind the President's liontaf assault upon llelms's position within the decision making apparatus Nixon brought to the presidency. Kissinger haselief lhat the CIA wasefuge of Ivy League intellectuals opposed toan prone to see enemies everywhere, Nixoa blamedefeat for the presidency on allegedly inaccurate and politically motivated CIA estimates that the Soviets had achieved strategic superiority ovci ihe Untied States during ihe Hiscnhovver years when Niaon served as Vice "resident: this was. of course, the so-called missile gap. Nixon was convinced thai

Agency liberals,acade of analytical objectivity, were usually pushing then ownfat Left, essentially defeatist sel of views incompaliblc wiih those held by the silent majority of Middle America, which he had adopted (or created) as his constituency. As for Helms. Kissinger reports, the new President felt ill atith the DCI. "since he suspected thai Helms was well liked by the liberal Georgetown socialhe very "estaWisbment" Nixon professed to scorn.'

Why did Nixon, given these prejudices, decide to keep Helms as DCI? The former President has never explained his reasoning, hut themay partly lie with the extremely narrow margin ofMvictory Given the absence of any real mandate, he almost cettainlyeed to move cautiously With Helms commanding widespread andtespect in Washington, there were no compelling reasons, not anyalternative candidates, la justify orhange. Inthe practice of each new President appointing his own Director of Central Intelligence had not yet been establishedoth Kennedy and Johnson had retained DCIs selected by their predecessors. Finally. Nixon's bias was not so much against Helms as against the Agency he ran.

Although he kepi his job. Helms realized immediately that his. in for some rough sledding "It was bound loocky period wiih Richard Nixon as President, given lhe fact thai he held tbe Agency responsible for hit defeat" the former DCI would later say. "And he never forgot that- Hearb out for the Agency all theixon initially concentrated his fire on the National Intelligence Estimates, evidently regarding them as the chief vehicle for CIA animosity And hi* memory was long. From lhe early days of his administration. Helm*he President singled out for criticism Estimates from, when he was Eisenhower's Vice President. "He would constantly, in National Security Council meetings, pick on the Agency fot not having properly judged what the Soviets were going to do wiih various kinds of weaponry he would make nasiy remarks about this and say Otis had to be sharpened up. The Agency had to understand it had loetler job and soelms'* concluding remarks arc arresting: "Dealing with him was lough, and it *eem* to me that thended up with my head on my shoulders after four years of wxtrting with him i* not the least achievement of ray Ufe.""

Nor were the temperament and personal style of Richard Nixon the only obstacles Helms faced under the new regime. The new Presidenthimselftaff that combined on intensely personal loyalty to

tan (Boston: Lmic. B'uai and Company.p

II. 16

iiirrsmw, II

tteh'iom Willi the While House

it*indictive capacity lor seeing presiderilial adversaries in every quarter. Helms thinks il likely dial personalitiesule In the tiiKomfortablc situation in which he found himself:

Tn ihnbviously don't haie any wi> of judging whatbeing Pirrctor haid h> do wiih on* oneor ihe other. Beeaaoe.all. Nixon fc-ippoinird mea* no run for )prciuSrntulEhrhclman orey dida'i like rhr tppnnimrai in use fnu place So ihrreaa element thai wa* antiean, il didn't maaiim utetf with knives ia my back, narttcularly bul. you know, 'ibisot"

CIA wa* not Ihc only agency It)aiked change once lhe Ninon (cum replaced lolinson's. The revclalions in ihc Watergate hearings have made il abundantly clear lhat President Nixon viewed mosl of lhe governmental institutions he inherited from his predecessor with keenlhe new administration brought to the daily operation of Ihean us against them approach. The White House seemed to regard the entire governmental bureaucracy as jusi another locus of poliiicaJ partisan-*hip, necessitating tighter control and greater centralization within the small group of officials close lo. ..

This was particularly true in the realm of national security policy, where Kissinger moved quickly totrong National Security Council staff under his leadership. Moreover, heew dimension to live job of Assistant to the President fot National Security Affairs Both his immediate predecessors. McGeorgc Bundy and Walt Rostow -presidential assistants to Kennedy andmen of broad understanding and high intelligence. Bundy and Rostow. however, had confined themselves to subordinate rote* in national security affairs, primarily making certain that the Presideni was kept thoroughly informed on key issues by channeling ihe requisite information to himan of powerful intellect wiih an ego io match, injected himself far more directly into ihc actual policymaking process. The former professor turned National Security Assistanttrict melhodology upon theof policy and the intelligence to support it. For the intelligencethisigidly formalistic system designed to generate multiple policy options for White House use. In Kissinger's scheme ofIA was demoted from its traditional position as the primary governmental source for objective reporting and analysis on internalhxuI affair* and relegated to being merely another contender for White House attention

Even though Kissinger himself wa* very critical of nationalin Helms'* view Nixon's "carping" heightened this disdain "So eslimating was hardly something that he wanted tohampionelms later observed of Kissinger. "JT'hese (wo men tended to work on


each other with respect to the estimating process of the Agency. And Kissinger, feeling that Nixon didn't regard ihe Estimates as being very good, didn't pay very much attention to themoreover, heendency lo he selective in the way he read intelligence. All this. Helms came lo feel, was

pail of Kissinger's tactics. The nvorc you keep people otf tulauce, Die more you keep the picssuie un, llie more he fell they'd work harder or he more carefulelter job or something. So that gelling any praise oul ot Kissinger lor any particular thing was well, it virtually never happened. Hehave any commendations to hand around to anybody. *

The result, Helms has noted,eriod when Agency analysis and estimating rather consistently encountered heavy weather in (he White House.

In other respects as well, Nixon was quite unlike the gregarious Johnson. Opportunities for informal meetings with ihe President were few. und direct substantive exchange between Nixon and Helms quite meager. Most presidential foreign policy discussions took place in closed Oval Office sessions with Henry Kissinger and Nixon the only participants, ln conlrast lo LBJ. Nixon chose nolely on his Director of" Central Intelligence to keep the facts straight and the judgments sound. Except for Kissinger, who quicklyecure relationship with the President in the realm of national security affairs, the Nixon White House innerconsisted exclusively of presidential campaign lieutenants and political partisans.

Like LUJ, however, Nixon preferred lo receive his intelligencethrough the primed word. Nixon "took il in better through iheelms recalls. In NSC meetings, he "would sit there for longerafter the fim five minutes his mind would start to wander, too. unless something came up that he was particularly interested in. So one has to adjust to thesehus the question became how to get the important documents to Nixon's desk. The problem was mademore difficult by the system Kissinger established with his NSCPresident Nixon'sfiltering ihe flow ofto the Oval Office. At the outset of the Nixon administration. Helms attempted lo send io Nixon, as he had toteady flow of shotl pieces containing intelligence pertinent to ongoing events. But since Nixon felt no particular need for Ihe type of in-dcplh CIA reports and studies Ihe Agency had provided for Johnson, Helms was soon reduced to sending Kissinger those items he felt contained especially pertinent information,ote politely suggesting that (he information be passed to the



RelaiuiiK With lhr While Hume

President. Inirccl access io Ihc President fot imicly und sensitive information from his principal intelligence officer was closed oil during ihe Nixon administration.

The record ol (TA intelligence support during the lohnson and Ninon administrations amply illustrates that ii is the President himself whohow effective thai support can be. His attitudes, his work habits, his receptivity lo objective judgment whether favorable or unfavorable io his hopes andare the essential elements in determining bow much and hem well his intelligence organizations can help him Richard Helms well understood this point:

Each Presideni has lo be dealt withuecim according lo his personality and according in hu way of doing business Tou>ci>nc| cay ltut theelationship wiih ihc President should be X,. is absolutelyheir is no way thai these things can be legislated orlivery President it going to do his business the way he wants to do it. You say, "Well, he should disciplineut ihry never do They do it exactly ihe way they want to do it."

The singk-most-import amCI must have lo cinureimpact and effectiveness is access to the President But here again, such access depends entirely on the principal occupant of Ihc White House.

Most people miss the point about the United Slateselms has remarked

The Cabinet and ill the principal (posts' are appointive jobs; the; ateAnd) every single one of Ihosr fellow. has to he %omeone ihe President can get along wiih. If the President doesn't gel along with him. Ihen he'll lade nwtiy '"

Richard Helms did not fade away, but neither wns he able to use CIA intelligence lo serve Presideni Nixon as well as he might have

The contrast between the relationship Helms and ClA enjoyed with Lyndon Johnson and their relationship with Richard Nixon underscores this point. The policy problems use iwo Presidents faced, and lhe intelligence CIA could provide to help (hern deal with those problems, were notdifferent in kind or quality. Yet. measured by the cffeciise assistance CIA was permitted to offer, the contrast is stark In the atmosphere of the Johnson administration. CIA under Richard Helmsrusted, competent ally that was accorded the large scope to do its job. The Nixonon the other hand, tended to see the Helms CIAuspect, erraticthat required constant scrutiny to ensure that it acted in llie interests of the While House rather than its own. The record makes' it clear: CtA intelligence was only as useful as the President permitted il to be


MHCHAOS: CIA and Ihe Anliwur Movement

liveiy 1'ivhident has his special ureas ol personal micicst or concern. John Kennedy, lot instance, possessed strong feelings about Ihe dangers posed by nuclear proliferation. More recent Presidents have displayed an intense interest in such issues a* iniemaiinnal icchrtologvrras control verification, and siate-sponsorcd terrorism. The wise Director of Central Intelligence will identify these areasresident's interest and ensure lhat his Agencypecial effortover them well. For Richard Helms, this meant allotting ait enormous shate of the Agency's resources to Ihe problem of Indochina. It alsoudden spurt of effort in Chile (as this study explores elsewhere in somence Nixon0 focused on the likelihood lhat the Marxist Salvador Allendc would be elected President And under both Johnson and Nixon, it meant continuing attentionhe problem of domestic dissent, particularly in its international context. Both Presidents were dismayed by the extent to which Iheir policies had encountered domestic opposition; both allowed themselves lo believe that foreign machinations lay behind this opposition. And both placed onIA demands that, al leatl in retrospect, raised troubling questions about how the Agency should respond toPresidential directive*..

Few Clandestine Services activities brought Richard Helms more criticism and censure than the operation bearing the cryptooym MHCHAOS, by whichPresident Johnson'sIo discover whether the movement opposing the Vietnam war was funded or directed fiom abroad. Within the Agency, resistance lo Ihe program was widespread and surfaced almost as soon as awareness of its existence seeped into middle management and the working level. Outside CIA. the series of investigations of the Agency that marked theettorm of protests by the press and civil liberties groups. CIA was exceeding the range of its legal charter, the cntics charged, by operating intelligence collection activities within the United States against US cili/ens. Some of this censure rested upon exaggeration and distortion. The investigations ofstablished, however, lhal CIA was by no means entirely innocent

of the allegations lodged against il

In the lummcT. as racial unrest and antiwar sentimentaround the country, officials in the Johnson administration cast about for some explanation of the burgeoning dissident mosement President Johnson found it impossible to believe that American youths would, without external provocation, indulge in (he riotous actions currentlymany of live nation's cities and campuses. Convinced lhal foreign agents, almosi certainly Communists, were funding and directing these

Relations Willi the White House

activities, he wanted CIA to obtain for hint the positive proof that he was certain existed. Helms recalls lhal (his wa* "an abiding concern" on the Protdcni's part

Neither he noi the Vice President. Hubert Humphrey, could figure out why such turmoil. II there wasn't some foreign element ot souse Icrcign money hchind it. ami this was sortica. "Can't you fellow, find out what* go ing on here* Look at Ihriche streeo. we can't imagine that good Aasrncant do Hsutgt like. He was rery concerned about this,on't thiak that anybody ihat wa* in National Serum* Council meetirtg* with him had any doubt that hr was very -tuned about wfiai kind ot tomgn Influence was In theovement ami was talking about il constantly and couldn't unclcisland why people couldn't find (he evidence.

Richard Helm* was aware from the MM rfiat miclhgeoce activities directed in any way against domestic American groups would require the Agency to work close to (he line of iis charter. He. nonetheless, believed (hat (he President's request for information was proper, and thai Ihe Agency could stay within the range of authorized activities whileto this request. "That the target, the objective,egitimatehink goes withoute would later explain.ean, this was pari of the Agency's job, that if foreigners were iillempting to cause trouble in the United States, the Agency certainly had its part in trying to find out who these foreign countries were, whai entities were involved, and why they were doing this and horn. Naturally, it was up to the FBI to monitor events within the United Slates. But, Helms added, "It was incumbent upon the Agency to do its best outside to find out the origins of this antiwar movement, where the money was coming from and how it was being

And if their investigations should lead Agency officers actus* that line separating foreign from domestic activities?onscioustit the time this cameelms relates As the former DCI recalls it, one of his subordinates approached him with the argument lhal. if CIA were goingbtainoundedts investigation* needed to be comprehensive "It really doesn't make much sense to cut off the legs and jusl leave the lorso wanderinghe officer argued. "So let's put the whole thing together and take whatever chances go with litis because il docs seem to be soressured by whai (he Rockefeller Commission later termed "continuing and insistent requests from the Whiteelms bought this reasoning "

"KkIupJ M. Helm, interviewmilh. rape molding. Wishinciiw. DC.war IWJ>

(ferritin imt*HrmmW) iSr.r.

"flW. US Cammmutan mm CIA Aetiniiriraised Suae*.to thr frruimi

tWmh.ngf.iui.ffice. IVUl lucreafler'iruik'ntoi"nicd ihulao look Into nlle-ijjiix" (il rtomotii t'lA activities


The IXTa first move, inas lo sci up wilhin lhe Counterintelligenceew unit called the Special Operalions Groupndime Richard Ober its head. The group's sole purpose. Helms instructed Ober. was to determine if domestic political dissidents, including student antiwar protesters, were receiving foicign support.stablished thiselms later explained, "because it seemed to me that since thisigh pnoniy in ihe eyes of Ihe Piesideni, that it shouldighhrber'. job waa lo examine all material, "from all over the wotkJ. from whatever source that we couldo see what was behind Ihe nationwide disorders.

Over the next few years, the Special Operations Group expanded steadily,taff offn pursuing us leads, the grouptnformaiion on thousands of domestic dissidents, eventually opening subject til-merican citizensoiilical organizations. Ihc greatest bulk of ihese files came from the FBI and contained the usual melange of FBI rcptnTing. which tended to he heavy mi hcaisay. unevalu-alcd tumor, and indirect information. In all. mote thanames from FBI files were placed in the SOG computer system.'" Most of these names, later inquiries were lo demonstrate, belonged to persons representing no security risk whaleser

The first fruit of this special group emerged ina large demonstration outside the Pentagon the previous month, and was entitled "Internaltonal Connections of. Peace Movement" Although Ihe Directorate of Intelligence's (Dl) Office of Current Intelligence (OCT) did the actual writing. Ober's researchers provided nearly all the information for the report. Given President Johnson'sthe conclusions of the paper must havelashingThe gist of the report was that CIA could turn up little evidence of foreign involvement in the peace movement and no indications offoreign financial support. This conclusion set Ihe pattern forstudies on this subject: if American antiwar gioups were directed or controlled by foreign elements. CIA could not find evidence of it.

Because of the intense interest of Lyndonan capable of intensity--Richard Helms might havearsh reaction io mis report Ii did not come But at tbe same time the administration made it clear thai the Agency was to continue itsalong these lines Ober's staff intensified its efforts,uccession of studies onradicalism, black activists, and tbe peace movement None was able lo point to specific foreign controls. InJI, in response tomounting official concern as antiwar demonstrations grew in number and violence. OOore ambiiious study tilled "Restless


. M

illi thr Wl/tir/ /tome

imilar disorders had occurred in Europe, and (his coincidenceo allay While House suspicions regarding foreign incitement in ihe US "Restless Youth" nevertheless concluded, like us predecessors, iImi American student radicalism stemmed from domestic social and poliii-cal alienaiion. not from foreign influence.

Such an answer pleasedrtdon Johnson, who was convinced ol us opposite, nor Richard Nixon, whose beliefs in (his regarddm son's, nor Richard Helms, who wished lo pruvide what wastl were true und could he found. Helms would subsequently downplay the pressures on him to nnd convincing proof of foreignbut they were real all the same Hsen so. his subordinate* report that theefrained from making unreasonable demands on them. As Richard Ohci says. "At no time did Dick Helms ever put any pressure on mc to come up with ihe answer the President wanted lie acceptedrought him and made no effort to influence the analysis.""

Thisoint of very considcrahte significance, one that speakshe integrity of the Agency and its officers, and even more lo the integrity of its Director, who was feeling the presidenlial heal day alter day. Itoint tha!ners1lv to have beenency's iriticv Despite very strong pressures, the Agency stuck lo its guns. It did noloul by stringing together hearsay and innuendotory thai would both provide an answer pleasing to the White llouse and impugn themovement as Communist inspired Instead. Agency officers sifted and soiled reportsprofessional thoroughness, searching for credible evidence. Finding none, ihey reported (heir conclusions without apology and informed the White House that the movement could nut be dismissedornmunist ploy.

The growlh of Obcr's staff, made necessary by the elfotis of Agency oversea* stationseport any scrap of information (hat might prove use-lul. caused increased concern on Helms'* pan over the security of iheas did Ihe SOG's inevitable ventures inlo grey areas of the Agency's charier The DCI therefore set up the cryptonym MHCHAOS for all traffic io and from the Obcr group and clamped very tight security on thai traffic Contrary to the fantasies of Agency critics, the cryptonym CHAOS hav no symbolic significance: il was rnerely ihe next crypt in the system. Helms also made certain that Ihose who received CIA reports detailing American student activities were made aware of the extraordinary sensitivity of these studies.

Apart from these rigorous security precautions. Richard Helms felt no great concern about the way MHCHAOS operations were conducted. By (his time, one modus operandi for grating better information was to use

'Unhid Otsrr.mith, tinehniEti>n.4 Iult

S 17

young Americans already involved in Xhc domestic antiwar movement, who could be trained for infiltration of overseas peace groups. Recruiting youngha* country for overseas duty was working close to the bone, but Helm* had confidence in the professionalism of Agency officer*to tin- task. He felt no needssue strict warninghc case officer* these American agents were nol in he used to get information about the domestic aniiwur movement.hought everybody in the Agency osei the age ofnew lhat this wa* one of the guiding principles of Agencyertainly oa various occasion* in talks with Ober and others had plenty of opportunity to recmphasizeon'i ihink anybody had any doubt about

Even so,andful of instances laicr investigators found (his "guiding principle" had been slighted. Information about activities in the Unitedbtained from infiltratedas retained in SOG files. On three separate occasions, MHCHAOS agents were specifically used to galher domestic intelligence SOGvnably "Restlessealt wiih purely domestic matter<(

13oTnh^'M"MlTLTIAUS'-fcIaicd activitieshe Rockefeller

Commission found many of (hem profoundly disturbing. While it held lhal ihe "declared mission of gathering intelligence abroad a*oreignon domestic dissident activities wa*t nevertheless found that some of the domestic activities carried out under MHCHAOS auspices "unlawfully exceeded lhe CIA's statutoryommissionvoiced particular concent that SOGepository for large quantities ol information ondomestic activities ol" Americanuchhich] was not directly related lo the question of the eii*tencc of foreignheir conclusion:

It was probably necessary for the ClA to accumulate an information base on dome.tit dissident activities in order to assess fairly whether the activities had foreignui ihe accumulation of domestic data in the Operation exceeded what wa> rrauxiabt) required to make such anand was thus improper '"

Richard Helms fully appreciated how close io the line presidential demands wetc pushing him. He ordered ihe study "Resiles* Youth" produced in two versions, oneection on the domestic scene.

tbe other without this section. Only the second version wa* distributed lo other ccmmonity agencies, the first was reserved exclusisely for the While

House and two or three key presidential adviieis In delivering the fuller

*Helim iBUrvici.Buekclrlki Commnaioo.

Relations Wiih ihe While House

to President Johnson. Helmsovering memorandum noting. "You will, of course, be aware ol* the peculiai sensitivity whichto the fact thai CIA hateport on student activities born here andiving Kivsinger the study earlyelm* went even further. His covering memo explained that the reportec-lion on American students and slated:

In an areaihin ihe chanei of ihls Agency,eed notow extremely wnsiiivc rnis makes the paper. Should anyone leants istencc il would prove mool embanassing (or all concerned **

In truth, Helms found himselfather light bind. The mote he reported the absence of significant links beiween domestic dissent andenemies, the greater the ikepticum he encountered from both the Johnson and Nixon White Houses Yet Ihe only way to prove theegative, so to speak was by expanding iheby investigating all dissidents. Helms and his associates would later argue-ertain logic- lhal. unless they looked into the origins and naiuie of domestic dissent, they would he unable to gauge the significance of ihe foreign contacts ihey did uncover

liven so, the DCI tried lo maintain Ihe distinction between domestic and foreign activities. Inelmsoint Of fur of v. Direct, irate of Plans proposal that entailed recruiting agents to penetrate domestic dissident groups to obtain information on foreignThis, he ruled, was beyond the Agency's jurisdiction and would cause widespread criticism if it became public knowledge. Eighlccn months later,emorandum to the four Deputy Directors heading DireO oratev he restated SOG's intentions to otjservc "the statutory and de facto proscnption on Agency domesticclms's Deputy Director for Intelligence. J. Smith, has also recalled one of the Director's morning meetings where Helms announced, quite deliberately and with great firmness. "We do not operate against Americans in this country. Keep your hands off Americans in this

Yet. as information on MHCHAOS and related pmgiams came to light in the. Helms professed nol to understand the"straining aie termed it On mote than one occasion he expressednuciion that, csncc tempers cooled, dispassionate examination ofwhat happened would disclose thai the whole affair was not "all thai muchuch, particularly Hie issue about the files (onJ Americans |held| in the Agency. There was never ihe slightest intention on anybody's part to set up duplicate files with the FBI or to persecute Americans or to


Helms iateiview.imrSraiuY* moll*.lion.


do anything withuring the course of MHCHAOS. he explains. SOGeavy paper flow wiih lhe FBI "Obviously, wc had to keep track of Ihcsc papers, wc had to file these papers, and over time wc builtremendous file. But it was not with any malignon't know of anybody who was really damaged in theelms, indeed, goes much further lhan this. The whole MHCHAOS business has been badly overblown, he protests:

All this nonsense about the Agency's role in distorting Americanhink it's just tbe biggest pile of cap imaginable,hink history will show this lo lie the case. In oilier words, when people come up with all this junk about the senior officials in the Agency, and Agency operatives nnd Apency analyst* having malign purposes and intent, il just doesn't show up on the record,hink that history oughthow that this was the case. There mayot of dirty tricks in future limes, bul there haven't been dirty tricks on Americans in the past, and they're damned lucky they had the kind of people they did running ihcir organization so lhat they didn't."

In Hclms's defense il is svorlh noting (as the Church committee did) thai lhe concept of "internal security" in the years5 had almost alwaysoreignhe McCarthyism of,oncern with externally directed subversion of the American Governmcni, for the benefit of the country's foreign enemies. The concern in thendompletely domestic internal security threat, from groups wholly independent of foreign influence,ew wrinkle. Moreover, Helms apparenily distinguished in his own mind between domestic penetration of dissident groups by CIA agents and contact with these groups incidental to the overall objective of gaining access overseas to information on foreignis, abetween deliberately acquiring intelligence concerning domestic activities and incidental acquisition of information while in pursuit of other objectives. The distinction, it turned out.ine one, easily crossed.

In facl. Helms received several warnings lhal even within his own Agency this murky distinction caused deep concern. On more than one Occasion he reassured worried subordinates of the propriety of SOG opera-lions.n response to concern expressed by midlevel officersIA management advisory group, the DCI assured ihem (hat lhe program had been properly authorized In earlyHCHAOSritical review by (he Executive Director-Comptroller, which brought fotlh another defense of the program from the

"Helm* interview,J.

"US Congiest, Scriwc Selcci Cimimiitee io Sludy (ioitrumfflfal Operitioni Wiih Rctpccl lo Intelligence Activities (Church coin milinal Report. Supplementary Detailed SiaJI Keptau it Im/IUgrari Aruriiirt and ihr Rights of Americans. 9dthd wis.III. Ac*ilittenratin cited i> Church tnmmitiee, Boolp 6Wi-6SV.

alions With lhe While House

Director's office "Ai time wente has related.e* ogniird lhaltike Agency, particularly among the young, there were some who fell that tills was an inappropriaic activity for lheut (heas nol in be turned back "Nevertheless,did not teem to rat properhould give up this activity simply because some young men didn't likeean, mere are often generation gaps, and ihcrc are oltcn differences ins for ihe criticism lhal he "was not morally tuned to ihe younger generation oreard all the argumentsill ihosifhi thai ii was desirable that we continue on with this endeavor.""

One is lefl with Ihe conclusion that, while Helms altnosl certainly realized that MHCHAOS was leading CIA to Ihc very edge of.his warning lo Kissingerihc limits of it* mandated auihorilies, he found it difficult or impolitic to buck Ihc insistent While House interest in the subject This may explain why he never consulted the Agency's General Counsel about the propriety of CIA engaging in this sort of program. Assuming the operations could he kept secretine qua oon foriscreet disregard for the letter of lhe law musl haveeasible policy. While acknowledging the tremendous pressure that the White House exerted on Helms, many later observer* though) this an unfortunate,angerous position.

Yei tbe problem of how to cope with forceful Presidential directives ol questionable legality remains. It is easy for one not subject to theof the President of the United State* to judge that Richard Helms should have evaded, deflected, or Hal refused those commands. Iia*y. yes: bul also insensitive to lhe sense of crisis pervading those times, lo lliehabits of obedience and duty characteristic of most professional intelligencend to the urvhallertged authority of the President in those pre-Watcrgatc days To date no one has been able to reconcile ihese clement* satislactorily. Mcmhets of ihc Rockefeller Commission, for example, could do no better than to offer the self-evident observation that "the proper functioning of Ihc Agency must depend in large part on the character of ihe Oirector of Central Intelligencehile no one would quarrel with this formulation, it fails lo provide any readilyirector faced with an insistent President What constitutes "itiiptiiperhere lie* the line between nccessaiy tleiibtlity and unbending principle? By what authority should (he DCI. who isolicymakerudicial officer, presumehallenge ihc judgment of (he President, live While House stall, or the Attorney General" Al what point does accornmodattion slide off into surrender" These are not simple questions, as Richard Helm* discovered to hi* considerable grief. But the difficulty in tesolving them had best not deter us from addressing ihem head-on. if for no other tca*on than to save some future Director from Richard Helms's quandary.


Intelligence Produclion

Chapter 2

Russell Jack Smith

Whrn Richard Helm* became CIA Dircciof on JOb. he look commandruiure. vrrwiothly functioning organi/ation tor producing finishedost of ihus disseminatedhe Presideni and his foreign policy advisers in one of two ways- IhroughNational Intelligence Estimate*r in various publications of the Directorate ofl I. ranging from daily periodicals such as the Freudrni'i Oath Bnef to long-range, in-depth studies of political,and strategic developments worldwide

Then as now. these Isvo forms of produclion were nol mutuallyin cither subject or scope. Tor example, in dealing with ihe number-one preoccupation of the period, the Vietnam war. Helms employed both rnethods lo provide intelligence support for the planning and implementa-lion of policy. NIEs, usually thought lo be broad in scope, on occasionshort-range, contingent mailers while ihe Dl undertook the analysis of long-range trends. Despite the overlapping nature of thesef production,erhaps helpful to discuss separately the use Helms made ofn. chapter will look first at the NIEs and then turn to theof ihe Dl.

Byhe Office of National Estimates (ONE) was inh year and had become entrenched by personnel and procedures thathack io the Eisenhower administration. The Office, under the leadership of Sherman Kent, consistedoard of seniorniajopiv_cif whom had been officers in ONEtaff of

Slates Intelligence Board (USIB)anel of representatives from (heIntelligence agencies for courdinallun, Imal approval, andThe process normall) loo* weeks or months, but on special request or dunng emergencies it could be reduced to days, even hours.

By the mtd-WoOs, subject* of thehad hecorne fued bylaid down during (he Eisenhoweration, when NIE* were pre pared a* annexes to policy papers for consideration by the National Security Council. Some Estimates, particularly those dealing with the USSR, were done annually; others, every two or three years.NE wa* producing approximately Estimates each year, of which aboutciccnl were programmed well TTTSdvance andercent wereto deal with emergent conditions or spontaneous requests

Helm* whose career to this point had been devoted almostto the Clandestine Servtces. had previously had only passingwith national Estimates. Officials in ONE worried that his attitude toward Estimates might icsemble lhat of Allen Dulles, who had also come to the directorshipackground devoted principally to clandestine activities, and who gaveccondary place in hisof priorities But from the oui*et Helm* exhibited an activen the quality and timeliness of national Estimate* On his second occasion as chairman of the USIB. he complimented the Hoard of National Estimates on ihe timeliness of, North Vietnamese Military Potential for Fighting in South Vietnam, noting that this subject was of maximum in teresi to policymakers at theubsequent meeting he remarked on how well thePanama Estimate had held upolicy discussion at the White House.

It i* worth underlining that Helms primarily valued Estimate* for their timeliness. ONE'* programmed production and long leadiime* did not always make Estimates emerge at the moment they were urgently needed. Helms constantly snuggled In minimize this problem. On utte occasion, having informed USIBaper then under way on Jordan wa* needed so urgently thai lime would not permit normal coordination procedures, he asked that divergent view* be forwarded directly lon anotherhe prodded Kentelay in finishing, Sonet Adwutied Weapon* System', since Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara had requested early delivery of the paper' Helms later broadened hiilo include all estimates pertaining to Soviel military capabilities, stressing lhal the suhject was of great and growing importance lo Ihe United Slate* Government and thai the Estimates comprised one of the principal tasks facing USIB8 He then urged the Board to make every effort to meet Ihe new schedule requested by McNamara, which had


'USIH MIihmoi.ovember Ivftft.

'Mix nine.inder IW.


moved completion dales forwardill Mich ex mutation* proved only marginally effective. The relative sluggishness andof thenmates rxoductvon process caused llclms in his ycais as DOurn increasingly often to other modes of production andn toil ion.

6 ihe Agency produced estimatesrocess thai had beenince the Korean war. Bioad agreement among executive branchmade it easy to obtain separate departmental approvalsrocess calledor an estimate that servedasts for laterpolicy documents. During his tenure as DCI. llclms witnessed tine disintegration ol Ihe foreign policy consensus on which the old estimative process relied Inurrdcpanmenial disputes began7 over the strength of enemy troops in Vietnam and later spread io issues relating to Cambodia and (he effectiveness of US bombing. By Ihe onset of Ihe Nixonthe CIA found its reports challenged by ihe depaitments of Defense and State and the While Mouse. Struggling to maintain the Agency'samid giowmg criticism, llclms employed all his bureaucraticcompromising occasionally, retreating whenteady stream of intelligence to the President.

The Vietnam fcstimatr

The Vietnam war destroyed the postwar consensus behind thepolicy, and it was in attempting to coordinate an estimate on Vietnam thai Helms first encountered stiff opposition to an AgencyThe controversy began7 over. Capabilities of the Vinnamne Commumiti foe Fighting in Somtk S'lenaoe Nearly twoafter the preparation of this estimate, the details of the procedure were still being debatedighly publicized liiwsuil brought hy Gen. William C. Westmoreland against Ihe Columbia Broadcasting System.'

In the preparation of this estimate trouble arose over enemy strength figures between Washington-based analysts (particularly those in CIA) and Saigon-based analysts al the US Military Assistance Command. Vietnamhe sources of difficulty were many and complex, ranging from differing interpretations of equivocal evidence, to varying definitions of enemy organizational structure and order-of-ballategories, to differing concerns of the essential nature of the war itself. In combination thesemade analysts in both Washington and Saigon stubbornly unwilling to accept the order-of-bat lie numbers of the other party.

This problem was not new. nor is it surprising in Teliospcct thatoused bureaucratic feuds- The war furnished ihe first occasion in Amencan rn.lit.rv historyivilian. Washington-based intelligence organisation had taken directh an American army fighting in the held over theand composition of the enemy forces that that aimy faced. By tradition, assessing the enemy's order of Kittle had always been a

strictly military responsibility Two developments served to change this practice first, the peculiar nature of the limited war ia Vietnam. where Washington maintained tight political control; and second, CIA's growing expertise in order-of-battle analysis. Moreover, the political nature of the war in Vietnam, where the enemy's main force units were supplemented by irregular forces at varying levels of strength and commitrnent. requiredabout force allocation* that were difficult to accornrriorlatc toorder of-battle tables, and which military officers wcie often teliK'tanl to accept. Another clement in this mix was Secretary of IX'lensc Kobcrt McNamara's penchant lor numerical indicators of progress, anlhat placed pressure on the Command in Saigon to produce numbers that refketed viaoric* commensurate with the effort expended

nalysis, whose work ONE relied upon in producing nationalhad wrestled wilh military analysis both in Washington and overseas for months before the preparation of SNIEelms had been made aware of the controversy earty in his iocutribency. Barely two wsteks afterDCI he ordered OA component' to review and improve theirfor maintaining statistics onix months latei he urged the CIA leadership to exercise care in producing figures on Vietnam and stressed the importance of having the Agency speak with oneat theciMinued to defy resolution, and inelms dUected the Dl to sort out and rationalize OA-DIA differencci on ihe number ol defections and recruits in Vietnam, one of Use several sources of disagreement.1

Byowever, the disagreement between the contenders was full-blown and seemingly irreconcilable It centered. Kent iaforrned Helms, around Ihe number of non-main-force units in Vietnam (that is, guerrillas, people's militia, part-time combatants) The military's estimate was roughly half as (urge as the CIA figure* CIA based its estimates of non-mom force strength largely on ihe analytic work of Samuel Adams, who sifted figuresarge volume of low-grade source materia! such asof pnsoners of war"

In earlyelms ordered. scheduled that week for USIB consideration, withdrawn and remanded for furtherhe controversy raged back and forth between Saigon and Washington without

3 Julyaining Mcellne MiiiuKt,Moinini Steering Minutes. i)Moralac Meeting

'kua fei .im sJjto'i real,in rwvn< al kcix-jic *berv fartsra hete hn nmeanrh M> nfast dtrul halite Uui ihr miUUrj had produced fur S'ortn Virinamcw un-ii lain, ifict'lAumniarad had protidrd Adjmi wilhumbrr ol upper lunilintrilling hiiii* cauvdie public meilu and charged Helms and oihrr- wiih

ul leaner* Adaim ari ihe principal ivnuiliani fa ihe t'BS profim. "Thejhack wa* braalf kwxd on hnyfornvi Wrumoreuarfi libri rail.

' Mon<ia|Minulev. fc7



Richard Htints

resolution (ot the rest ol July and nearly all nlraftmerged again for USIB consideration with the wide-open split prominently displayed. He fellplit of this dimension ovei the size of the enemy forces, especially one on which the complexities of the piotslem and the uncertainties of the evidence made it impossiNe for either side to prove the other wrong, was simply not useful Helms withdrew the draft from the USIB agenda once again and ordered wort on the estimate suspendedashington learn of analysts went to Saigon to make one mote attempt lo establish agreement with MACV. To lead the team of Dl and DIA analysts to Saigon, he selected George Cutvcr, his Special Assisiani for Vietnam Affairs.

The ensuing discussions in Saigon became, in Carver's words, "pretty warm and prettyuch of the disagtcemeni derived from differing concepts about the military organization of Vietnamese forces As Caner laterasic conceptual problem ran throughout the whole exercise. "The North Vietnamese simply do not wire together their structure" the way we do "and they used completelyome of the difficulty involved nomenclature. "Fora guerrilla to us meant any little guy in blackuerrilla lo them meant somebodyilitary unit thai was subordinateistrictillage committee, as opposed to somebody who was subordinaterovincial or regional committee that we classed as being mainTheis Carver's word -nature of much uf lheparticularly that based on prisoner interrogations, only compounded

these difTercnccs in view."

Reset with these difficulties, progress toward agreementet of Vietnamese ordcr-of-battle figures was slow. There wasn't muchon the numbers for main force units, but agreement on the number of irregulars responsive to Vietnamese military discipline remained elusive: the Washingtonteam's figure was approximately double that of the Saigon analysts At this point. Carver cabled Helmsarries of "long and bloody sessions" had produced no resolution and that the outlook for agreement was bleak. Herivate session with Westmoreland, commander of MACV, where he might be able to workompromise formulation, substituting words and approximations foi precise figures where agreement could not otherwise be obtained. Helms instructed Carver to proceed according to his own best judgment

When he met privately with Westmoreland Carver proposed thai ihc estimate should present the enemy order of battle in three parts. First those elements of the organized opposition for which the evidence was sufficiently hard to make quantification meaningful would beingle figure.

"Orontr Curvet, interview by R. I. Smiin. waihington. DC, Is May IvMJ therejftrruvei

Second, (hove components (or which some hind evidence existed, but no! enough to come upingle figure- would be ranged-il beingthat "betweenndhousand" did notut rather that the uncertainty ran1inally, thoaeforack of hard evidence made any figure meaningless would be described by wotds rather lhan numbers. Westmoreland bought (his proposal, and il became the busts for the Vietnamese order of battle ingreement had finally been obtained.

Carver's compromise, however, resulted in an odd document CIA figures,otal enemy structure approachingillion men. were spelled oul in the text of the estimate Hut Ihc tables accompanying the lexi listed only the agreed figures on the enemy's main force units. In addition, the estimate's sumtnatyotal enemy strength of. less lhan half the figure described in die discussion part of the estimate. Because most polKymakcrs were not likely lo readthe Nib's summary. Carver's compromise effectively buried CIA figures.

Cntics of Helmseadership of CIA have seized upon this episode as evidence of his unwillingness to stand fast on Agency judgments andeadiness to trim in response lo outside poiilical pressure. Iterious charge deserving of close examination.

The dispute between CIA and the Saigon Command over Vietnamese strength figures had been so protractedarge pan- it sometimeslikeof official Washington was awarr of it. Congressional leaders told ihc CIA Legislative Counsel of their concern over the "numbersohnson, impatient with the disagreement, asked Carver, "Can't you people gel together? You're all dealing with the same pool of evidence, aren'the dispute was not an idle bureaucratic rumpus. The opposed estimates supported dramatically different policyWestmoreland's figures indicated progress had been made and more still could be achieved: CIA figures indicated lhat Ihc Viet Cong's accessarge and growing manpower pool had been virtually unaffected byUS attacks. Disagreement between ihc Agency and DOD over the estimate could split the administration andolicy trim Helms fell tbe strongest obligation to arrive at an agreed figure the While House and the Secretary of Defense could use for fighting ihe war.

Notwithstanding lohnson's impatience. Helms received no specific pressure from any source to conform to the views of Westmoreland and the Saigon Command Johnson. McNamara. Presidential assistant Wall Rostow, and many others were aware of the controversy. Helms explains, but "this was not something that was normally discussed aiohnson, and McNamara particularly, had confidence in what we


were trying lo do. They saw (hat evcryrHxly: ii* best thryor both panics the tend j! objective was io teach agreement and not to lotce the otbet party lo knuckle under. Bui they wcte dealing with an issue loo complex (ot mem nonexperts to understand where diver, gentased on fragmentary evidence, had equally valid claims to respcciaNltly.

Nonetheless. Helms and his subordinates recognized ihe value olregarding the size of the mililary (orccs con Iron ling lhe United Stales and 1cIt lhe pressures toonsensus. Asas. beingot final USIB consideration. Kent reported at lhe Directororning meeting thai dissenting looliiolc* on the paper were icady forHelms replied lhal every effort should he made io avoid dissent in (hi* paper"

The need for consensu* brought Carver, with Helms'* endorsemeni. lo propose the compromise that Westmoreland accepted Nearlyear* later, the decision remain* controversial Clearly, however, it would tiase been simplistic and intellectually dishonest to insist that the higher CIA figure for Itregular forces was carved in granite, based as it was on spongy evidenceomplex methodology. Curvet denies that Helms trimmed his judgment or instructed his representative to yield.ever knew him lo trimudgment, and certainly never onas dealing with did he escr direct me to

Event* later demonstrated the supcrMnty of the figures deseloped by Langley analyst* In all likelihood, however, historians will never agreeingle judgment concerning lhe way in which Ihe CIA-MACV dispuie was resolved. An Agency -sponsored study, publisheda* perhaps come as close as any to summarizing this complex issue Johnson, it notes, brought gieai pressure to bear on ail the principal players lo document progress in the war effon. What Bruce Palmer hasertain amount of self-doception on ihe pan of ihc White House, as well as MACV. and lhe USn Saigon, to emphatize goodnd diwoum bad" may have renderedob in this instance nearly impossible. This study then concludes that no evidence exists lo support the allegation thai (he strength estimates were deliberately manipulated for political purposes.uspicion of slanting the evidence persists today, and it is doubtful whether this perception will ever completely disappear,""

Punly because of the prolonged controversy, bul also because of the explosive messageorth Vieinamcse "organized opposition" in the half-million lange. Helms regardedighly sensitive

Tutu*)aaarvir* bjaar isw Oaraha camltd anm mil


"Vii'tt im1

"on hixxe palme. ir. "us inielligeiki* aads isprtial issue. ivm)


document. On Us completion ine limned distribution of the Esiimaie to the President. Secretary of State. Secretary of Defense. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and each member of USIB

The publication ofarled the endattle but not the end of the war between CIA and the Amcncan military over North Vietnamese strength figures. The need for full agreement between Saigon and Washington persisted, and Helmsorceful role in the effort to achieve such an agreement Active rser^iation* toonsensus among Washington-based analysts in CIA and DIA resumed tnith the Intent of bringing MACV into the discussionsatet dale Throughout these proceedings CIA maintained ils position lhat in (lie quast-polilical war in Vietnam il was essential tohe need for enemy strength estimates (the "'organizedarver dubbed hi as (apposed io classic ordcr-of-battle number* MACV continued lo oppose the higher numbers of irregular units which ClA. with partial DIAsupported. Onlyhange of administration and numerous sharp exchanges was consensus achieved. Inelms instructed his Deputy Director for Intelligencemith, toem-randum containing the agreed numbers to Special Assistant Henry Kissinger,opy (lagged for Krrsidcni Nixon."

The debate that began over the sire of Vietnamese forces soon grew into diffetcnecs over the effectiveness of the United Stales' war cIToit. When Helms became Director, an intelligence memorandum was beingon the state of morale in North Vietnam in responseequest from McNainara. Endued "The Will Totengthy analysis of (he elements contributing to the enemy's high morale. Although two Dl offices, the Office uf Current Intelligence (OCI) and the Office of Economic Researchandled the bulk of (he analysis and writing, there was Agency-wide involvement, with the office of ibc Special Assistant for Vietnam Affairs acting as coord, naior The rrsrmoraneJum had originally been scheduled for completion in late August, butHelmswifter response to Ihe McNamara tcquesi."

"The Will To Persist" came to ihe pessimistic conclusion lhal US ef. forts in Vietnam as currently planned were not likely to deter ihe North Vietnamese nor slacken theirhe foreseeable future. Despite this unwelcome message. Johnson commended ihe mcmoranrjumfirst-rate ioh" ana requested Helms to brief three keyFulbnght, and Russell on itselms later reported lhat heoul these instructions but concluded lhat the study failed lo alter any senatorial positions on the war: Kulbright vociferously maintained the

Meaaxi0 "Mntiuni HcrlmieetingI


struggleivil war. Mansfield wa* noncommittal bin (hough) Ihe study "thotough andnd Ruvvcll taut he -ha/cu theconclusions.1'

In (his same period McNamara requested CIA lo undertake anof Ihe elfeclivcness of ROM.ING THUNDER, the US bombingover Noith Vietnam. Although (irst-class competence (or such work existed in OER. Ihisematkablc rcqueslecretary of to makeivilian Agency, and DDI Smith felt obliged to McNamara whether he wished ihe study coordinated with (he Pentagonaid MrNanuia.lready know what ihe Air Forceant to know

what sour smart guys think."

Like its predecessor study on North Vietnamese morale, theTHUNDER mc mora nd urn arrivedonclusion quite pessimistic from the Pentagon's point of view: CIA logistics analysis demonstrated thai ROLLING THUNDER was not achieving lis objective of significantly slowing the flow of men and maicncl into South Vietnam. Even though he realired thaiinding would please ncithcT Johnson nor McNamara. both of whom were enthusiastic about prospects for an American victory. Helms termed thefirst-class job" and forwarded it to the White House and Ihe Pentagon. He took care, however, to protect (he security ot Ihe study by delivering ihe copies personally and restricting furtherMcNumara was sufficiently impressed with the quality of (he aoaly-sis to tequest that the ROLLING THUNDER assessment be repealed hereafteruarterly basis. The successor studies continued, withacking, to declare unflinchingly that ROLLING THUNDER was failing in its objective, uhirnately judging that tbe North Vietnamese had managed in the teeth of the bombing program to improve (heir ability lo move materiel south hy five times. McNamara continued to tespect the CIA work; later Helms reported to his deputies thai the Secretary had thanked him for ihe "magnificent support" CIA had been giving him."

Innalysts produced yet amillicipaper on the war in Indochina (hisighly sensitise, lightly held memorandum written by John W. Hui/eaga. the chairman of ihe Board of National Estimates, and titled "Implications of an Unfavorable Outcome inhis siudy spelled out the view dominant among CIA analysis and estimatorsS-South Vietnamese defeat did nol necessarilyollapse of Ihe tesl of non-Communisi Southeast Asia In taking this position, Huizcnga was boldly challenging the so-called domino theory."

"DCt OMDhrul Filr.acwu IW* "MaraiagMHttta. i: Dnrmrei"IXrt rtvunalafKal File.rrariubcr ISM7

Iiiielligrnct Production

Unfortunately, one paper never reached ihc President -because il was never written. Early8 ihc North Vietnamese launched the Teta daring all-out cflort by the Commonius to inflict lerrnirval damage on ibe South Vietnamese regime. In the eyes of manynitial enemy successes, coupled with the offensive's scope and surprise, made nds (rat ion nssurancc* about American progress in Vietnam ludicrous; victory seemed further away than ever. To CIA analyst* andn the other hand, the Tet offensive looked insteadesperate and cosily thrust that failed in its objective and did enormous violence lo Communist cadre und networks by exposing them lo US and South Vietnamese counterattack.

Whatever the long-term meaning of the baule. the fact* remain lhal ihc Tet offensive caught the CIA by surprise. Dl analyst* in Saigon in the months before ihe uffensive worried lhal something big was building, but thcli warnings to Washington were not sharply enough focused to convince the Special Asvivtanl for Vietnam Affairs (SAVA) or the DDI. And no one envisioned lhe impressive countrywide coordination of the enemyr ihe miensity of ther the fact that the Communists would target urban areas for their primary elfott. Once the extern of lhe oflcnsive became apparent, Helms directed his subordinates to collect and record all facets of (be Agency's pcrfotmanee during the offensive for forwarding to the While House. He abo inurscted tbe Dl toetailed account of wtiai had been reported or forecast before ihc olfeniive, and he ordered the Difectoratc of Plans to intensity efforts to recruit knowledge able Vict Cong and Norih Vietnamese sources."

Differences between ihe CIA and executive branch agencies intcno lied during the Nixon admin titration The *harpest disagreements arose over Cambodia In9 the While House called fot improvedcollection on Vietnam andelms pushed for intensified efforts to snore up the "flimsiness" of ihc Agency's intelligence on thesecountries and urged hi* DDI lo be disctimirutiog in forecasting theinut White House dissattsfactvon with the quality of Agency reporting and analysis persisted. This discontent cameead over lhe issue of North Vietnamese use of the Cambodian port of Sihanoukvillc for moving war materiel into South Vietnam. Once more CIA and MACV went bead to head The same analysts inho had done the distinguished logistics analysis for lhe ROLLING THUNDER bombing program, which had so impressed McNamara. were working the Sihanoukville problem. Unfortunately, the intelligence reports ihey had lo work with were of poor quality, full of hearsay from mild- or fourth-hand

i, Mcrt-uj Mi-din. IIeming Meeting Mimics, It) Vi" mbei "Miniuns Meeting Minutes.

sources. Exploiting shoddy material to the maximum, and guidedegree hy the judgment lhal the flow down the Ho Chi Mmli Trail was in itself almoin sizable enough to account for enemy materiel in South Vietnam.nalysts arrivedigure for tonnage funneled through Sihanoukvtlle that was approximately half MACV* estimate

Helms was aware of this controversy, which had begun during the last year of the Johnson administration and had urged repeatedly lhalbe made lo resolve IL Both Carveril South had been instructed during visit* to Saigon lo make special effort* to find common ground with MACV onue. Both officer* discovered that the intelligence matenaJs MACVd were exactly Ihe *ame a*vailable in Washington They also found that the mililary analyst* were modes! to the point of being tenlativc about ihc figure they had finallyodesty not icflectcd by the Saigon Command nsclf. Resting itson the high quality of Ihe Agency's logistics analysis in lite pan, and recognizing the pent ham of the military for arriving at "worst case"the CIA leadershipdcieimined that the OEH figure was the bed that could be established Irons such inferior materials

By this lime the disagreement between CIA aad the military hada full-blown affair, in some respect* paralleling both lhe (iA MACV dispute over North Vietnamese order oi battle and the CIA-Pentagon fight over theoviet firM-strike capability. The parallel extended even to the intervention of Secretary of Defense Melvtn laird In0 the DDI brought to Ihc DCI's intention testimony by Laird and ICS Chairman Wheeler that ran flatly contrarycccnt CIA-DIAon the data base for estimating the importance of Sihanuukvillc.

jThcsc records revealed lha! tonnage flowing into

Sihanoukvillc and thence into the battlefield in South Vietnam was much higher than the CIA analysis had estimated. Worse yet, they at least equaled ihc levels MACV analysts had predicted.

DDI Smith reported '0 Helm* in laic July

Jl'his "excellent CIAmith noted, brought into question all previous tonnage figures, which had been based primarily on rived shippingER immediately setork revising its

'The irrt" "ClandeMim Siivito" referred in inc. Directorate of I'lam. 'MiMiung Meeting Minutes.uly UTO.

Mrhui Intnl. Srirelary nfOefenu

Sihanouks ilk shipmentncorporating the new reports inio ihe analysis Helnu then delivered the new studyigure higher tluin even the original MACVissingci. together wilh tin explanation of ihe analytic methodology appliedhe new data."

ll was an acutely embarrassing moment for Dleven more so for Ihe DCI The entire episode served only so reinforce ibc rarga-tivc impression ol ihe quality ol CIA analysis held by members of Ihe Nison adimnisiiniiDii To Nixon. Laird, and Kissinger it seensed CIAegative, antiwar line in its opposition to MACV'* ordcr-nf-rsaltlc hguicv. in its pessimistic assessment of the ROLLING THUNDERprogram, and now in its tardiness in recognizing the insportancr of SihanouLville. The tendcntioiisncs. of these judgments seenied obvious to men prone to regard any officer or involution outside (he White Mouse coterie as partisan and anliadminisuaiion Rut on Sihanouks ill. the Agency was wrong, so wrong indeed as lo be forced to admit ihe mistake openly In ibc atmosphere ol thehis demonstration of the fallibility of CIA analysis because an indictment of CIA integrity

Throughoul this episode. Helms retained his confidence in the honesty, objectivity, and demonstrated competence ol his analyst* No reprimands were issued for poor performance because Helms recognized that the original judgment had been the best that could honestlv he made

MMiinfcrxr niher |vt:i.

with the(hen available. The inicgrily of OER's officers wasdemonstrated hy (heir complete about-face when solid evidence came to hand. Helms himself absorbed the harsh judgments and cynicalthat this affair provoked Rather than transmitting these to huinales. he assured them thai he understood bow honest mistakes could be made in Ihe inspcrievt world erf intelligence analysis He speaks nf ihe cm sode phitosoprUcally:

a. nut pleased abortat you've got to lake the good wr* mt bad Anybody who goes into ihe toes xssorecogaiiion thai God did not give prcsocacc bavenl bee* endowedprescstaee Andou've js*ssume that you reea ol bad calU. rasrtxularlyouny courage and realty reach outo youve gut to h. prepared for the ealls and prepared tc. take ihem undon and try to do il hettci nest time."

Nonetheless. Ihe damage was lasting. As Carver comments. Helms "was vulnerable because in any lulure major controversy where he really held the line, he would have been vulnerable to: 'Yes. but that's what you said abouthile this was certainly true. Helms himself never took this line wilh ihe Dl analysts who had made the mistake and who continued lo take independent and oilen unpopular posilions onintelligence judgments.

Vietnam placed new demands on the Agency, and Helms frequently found himself al the ccntei of Cabinci disputes over the war's purpose and strategy Throughout, he tried to maintain the Arrency's roleredible and important contributor to the policy process, defending CIA estimates while conceding their fallibility. His difficulties multiplied during the Nixon years, as the trident grew increasingly intolerant ofec olive.

Difficulties With Nlson

Despite hu pmiccupation *ith Vietnam. Helms continuednvolve himselfteady stream of naliooal estimates on other sensitive mat ters. In7 he emphasized to USIB members that US base rights overseas were currently of great interest to then October he applauded ihe limely completion of. Soviet Capabilities for Strategic Attack, characterizing itery good paper and important document""'fruit same month he referred to. India* Domestic

une"Carver0 May'"USIB MBBfeKAprilSIBas

Prospeeis. as highly useful lor ihel-ood for IVacc) discussions ihen in progress and ordered prompt distribution to ihc Secretary of Agrxulture and other interestedther example* of the atlention he gave to estimates: can he found in comment* he made regarding NIBolewuil for Revolution in latin America, which he commended for its clear, lively language and the wide range of its consensu*nd in hi* remarks on. Short- Term Outlook in Communist China, which he praisedood pibifficultel. the three oflicet* who served successively a* chairman of the Board of National Estimate* under Helm* Kent. Abbot Smith, aad Huizcflgashared lhe perception that Helm*'* iniercst and involvement in nuliunal estimates were nol wholehearted Kent has noted thai "Dick wasn't very interested in some of the things we were required to do"imates on Alnca and Latinmith agreesas quiie sure he was more iiiictcsied in the DDI' (clandestine!ul/enga put* it this way: "He was not. of course, deeply engaged tubstantively He wa* focusing almost entirely on certain subjects that he thoughte adds lhat Helm* "conducted himselfait and responsible manner with people responsible for

These comments reflect, atart. dilTcrent view* about Ihethe national estimate* were designed to reach and ihe role they were expected to play. Helms judged estimates by their responsiveness lo current concerns of top-levelhe Board of National tiiiimates centered the bulk of io work on preprogrammed estimates, scheduled againstpolicy activities within the Departments uf State and Defense. Wiih Ihcir long preparation times, estimates often dealt wiih issues of secondary concernolicymakers. Even when dealing with an utgent issue, they sometimes failed lo consider aspect* ol Ihe problem lhaleveloped Amongodd estimates produced each year. Ihere wouldumber dial were of only perfunctory interest lo the topof the government

In pan, ihc difference in amiude over ihc role of estimates between the several chairmen of ihe Board of National Estimate* and lhe DCI amounted to no moreiffering judgment a*ow ihe esiirnates could he useful and effective. The Board felt that lis paper* couldatisfactory role in the support of LS policy ai several levels of the

"USIB stHnan. II Ovsobeibill) Vtsataevarch ISM "USIB Minuses.

"Sheiniun Kent, interview by K. I. Smith.2 ilmeifter cued ai Kern9 April isttm

Smb.yl I.92 ibewanx. conl as Sat iaaexww 29

Apt:! t!).

"John lliilienja. intersby2 (Irre-nei iiwd asIU.

process, beginning with (he individual bureaus In (he Department ol Stale. Helms was content (hat support al this level should continue, but strongly believed that ihe most iniportunl job that national estimates could do was to illuminate problemsimely fashion for people making keyHeie, he Tell, was where niaaiiuuin impact could be achieved, and greatest service performed. "Il's easy fo* intelligence people io forget that they'reervice organization, that they're teally there lo assist in the policy making process ihtough othere has remarked:

ive ihe Picintem. ihe Vke Prrudent. ihr rabinel ibe impeesuoa that use Agcacy was there to he useful, io be ot service, to heid my djiareocl.csuk of deraaads placed nr theec to it dsej weret and ihai iSe Ageacy nut uv best fool forward and the papers poducednactyum is wtiai wc were in rminru for and we were gotag to do this as Isrsi we could "

From the beginning of his (enure Helms estaNiattern ofsenior officers at his daily morning meeting of the issues on ihe minds of the President and the members of the NSC The minutes of theseare punctuated with requests by Helms for ihe Dl. ONE. or the Directorate of Science andSAT) tn prepare studies to meet uigent needs. On one occasion he advised the chairman of the Board of Nalional Estimates that the White House felt keen concern over Sovietregarding disarmament and directed ONE foaper on ihen another he urged Ihe CIA leadeiship lo locus on the likely situation in Southeast Asia afler ihe war was concluded, saying thisimely subject that would receive "intense scrutiny" from presenthese bird dogging efforts by Helms to discover tlie current and emergent concerns of the key people grew in number and peaked during the finalonths of the Johnson administration, when Helms achieved unprecedented access to the White Hoawc inner circle andegular guest at the prestigious luesday luncheons. During the Nt&on administration this (tend declinedllerms's bestKissinger placed more constraints on intelligence support and the White House sought to subject (TA and intelligence productioo topolitical pressure.

The respect for national estimates among policymakers in tbe White House and NSC declined rapidly during the Nixon administration. Under Eisenhower, Kennedy, and Johnson. NIEsecure place in thesecurity policy making process They were valued for their role inconsensus within the intelligence community on sirategic issues, for their objectivity, for (heir freedom from departmental and institutional

"HtlrmM<iiniQt Moalrtf.Mornine. MeetingUliH

bias They did not always succeed in carrying ihc dayiven strategic judgment They were sometimes, perhaps frequently, ignored, but they were seldom, if ever, challenged as being partisan or tendentious. This changed when Nixon. Kissinger, and Lain] assumed their post*.

In pan this change can be attributed to the disintegration of the Cold War consensus on foreign policy. The two parties had attempted to remove politics from foreign affairs during much of the postwar period, making diplomacy and strategy "twt^onitan" issuev The prolonged and difficult war in Vietnam created deep divisions wnhin the United States Government about ihe lundaniental aims and purposes of foreign policy. The war, and Ihe containment policy (hat justified It. became objects of divisive and acrimonious debate between Democrats and Republicans. Congress and tbe Executive, and between Cabinet departments. In ibisthe task of producing widely accepted, objective judgment*more difficult. Ilui/enga recalls lhal after the mid-NbOs the tendency to treat intelligence politically increasedwith respectssues like Southeast Asia and the growth of Soviet strategic forces, which were politically divisive. "If wc go back to an earlier phase ofe explains, "it was an easy job in the sense that thereroad consensus in the country about foreign policy and how io Ihmk aboui the principal issues, the Russians and allnce lhat broke down, the job of doing independently conceived analysisellot mote difficult. The pressure on the DCi inevitably mounted.""

The poliiiciration of intelligence analysisyproduct of thisconsensus Since tbe Agency's inceptionoth theleadership and successive DCIs had gone lo great lengths to keep intelligence information and judgments out of the press and publicThey recognized that withoul such protection (nun public andscrutiny it would be impossible for CIA to maintain its role as objective observer and analyst of international developments Ntxonofficials ended this tradition. They wauled the Agency either to bring ihem the kind of news tbeyabout Sovietlo maintain respectful silence.

We have already seen, in reviewing Helms's relations with the Nixon White House, the difficulty that the National Intelligence Estimate*with Nixon and rvissinger laird's attitude toward tbe NIEs was rathct more selective. By and large, he was less critical of CIA analysis and estimating. In his previous position a* Congressman from Wisconsin, he had occupied for many years an important position on ihc House Appropriation! Subcommittee lhal hud responsibilily within the House of Representatives for the budget* of CIA and tbe Department of Defen*e. Ie that capacity he had befnended the Agency and lent valuable support on



several occasion* Bul his slylc then us well as later tended iu be combative and adversarial He wa* highly partisan on policynd hi* public altitude toward the Soviet mililary threat *a. if anything, more virulent even thant was fromand that Helm*low lhal ba* done much tohe DCI'* reputation forndin defending CIA judgment and estimate*.

This episode9 in connection with anpaper on the Soviet ICBM designated theIA analysislhat ihc new Soviet missile, then neanng deployment, had powerful capabilities, but they were uncertain exactly how powerful An unanswered question was whether the multiple warhead* of ihcere fitted with individual guidance system* io direel them precisely to dispersed USsilos. The Nixon administration was just then seeking public and Congressional support to develop and deploy an antiballisttc missileystem, the Safeguard ABM. Toationale foi iheaon-do liar ABMem. Laird and the Pentagon seized the Soviet development of ihclaiming that lis triple warheads weretargeted (Multiple Independently Targeted Reentry Vehicle, orhis weapon, military analysis declared, would enable the USSR In destroy the bulk of the L'S Minutemun ICBM lone in one strike and demonstrated the Soviets' intention toirst-strike capability, lhe US ABMthey argued, was an essential antidote

The (TA look the opposite view on theapabilities. Agency analysts believed thai daia derived fromesting indicated that lhe new ICBM had multiple te-cnlry vehiclesot individually guided MIRVs. Soviet rockcls had less ability to hit dispersed luigets limulta-neously than the Pentagon claimed Agency analyst* also refuted thelhal the USSR sought toirst-strike capability. The Board of National Estimate* held to the positionad maintained for several years lhat this wasikely Soviet objective. The argumenton thtec points: the undertaking would impose prohibitive costs on the Soviel economy: militarily the task was so complicated and difficult as to be almost impossible to achieve: and. finally, Soviet leaders would rrc<>fmt that the United State* would match then effort* step by *iep and thwanccu**_

Thc final crunch between Helms and Laird came inut the buildup to this moment had been several month* in the making. InDI R. J. Smith alerted lhe DCI lhal Laird's testimony before ihe Senate Aimed Services Committee attnbuted capabilities to lhehat CIA information indicated ii did notelms reviewed with his senior lieutenants the public debate then taking place regarding the Soviet

"Morning Milling Minutes. II Mmlt isn't

siralegic threat, especially the CIA position on the question, andtudy of past NIUs to determine how (hose positions had hcen arrived at and how the CIA view on thead been established "

Pressure from the White House and the Pentagon steadily ntountcd mroughout the spring and summer In lune. Helms told his lop command that Pentagon officials had accused CIA officers of undercutting laird's pro AHM position on the Georgetown cocktail circuit, laird felt lhal these rumors, together with CIA's official analysis of theere killing the Safeguard ABM program. His deputies regarded the CIA as hidebound in its views on Soviet strategic intentions Helms directed his deputies tothat no CIA officerublic position, either pro or con. on the ABM issue. He further instructed those officers engaged in the analysis and estimating of Soviet strategic inientions to examine with great care all new evidence. They were to tear up all old papers and start again They were not to become permanently convinced of the validity of their ovsn

Byew paper addressing the capabilities of theas in the works. Intended to update the previously published Ml* with new evidence gleaned from theest program, it encounteredin the coordinating sessions with the L'SIB ageism* Laird's firm line oo the Soviet buildup suggested that final coordination of the estimative memorandum would be difficult. Helms nonetheless presented the memorandum in normal fashionegular L'SIB meeting and itoordinated USIB paper, laced with dissenting footnotes.

The next day. Deputy DCI Robertixon appointee, was called to the White House "to explain" the CIA position on Iheissinger requested that the officers directly responsible for the (TAmeet with himiscus* the memorandum Helms directed Chairman of the ONI: Board Abbot Smith andack Smith to go Kissinger and the NSC staff made it clear that they were disposed to accept the Pentagon position lhat thead MIRV capabilities, and that ihey found evidence supporting the CIA view unconvincing. Kissinger requested aof the paper and the provision of additional evidence: pto and con on the MRV-MIRVbbot Smith rewrote the paper to thesewithout altering the CIA position on the MIRV question or its


w lowvv.i mouo* i

i" cilcdenaie seleei* lo sua*iiiai-on> wiih retpaei in inicllifmee aetisoles loarcb tvnwiiinetl.iori Praajffi tout UiJia/i)hd scis. Book i. apnlriearicr citedi'mi. enmiruitee..


implications liar Soviet strategic intentions He received Helm.'- fulldespite Ihe heavy pressure thai Niton and Kissinger exerted on theand Laird's angry frustration."

The controTTsy simmered throughout inc summerressure from the Nixon administration continued unabated andhile House investigation of leaks to The New York Times lhal had icvcaled the CIA position on Soviel first-strikeelms informed his officers that "responsible quarters" were charging CIAuilt-in bias in itsbut he made it clear that this was not his view and thai he was nol himselfushman reported another White House appeal, this time from Kissinger's rfcpuiy. Col. Aksartdcr llaig. who asked that distribution of the revised nsernorandum on thee delayed until the White House could son out itseanwhile. Laird, frustrated in his efforts to have theeclared MIRV-cupable, had adopted the position that thewarhead of Iheven if unguided, would falluch footprints, heational television audience, could be plotted in such fashion so as lo produce asestruction of IIS Minute man fields a* the MIRVs could have done. Rationalizations like these led Deputy Director for Science and Technology Carl Ducketi to refer lo Pentagon analysts as "The Inventors.'*

But though Helms maintained Ihe CIA position on thenflinch-

proached In September, when the annual estimate on Soviet Strategic Attack Forces.. was scheduled for coordination. Again Ihe capability of theissile ami its implication for Soviet inientinns loirst-stnke offense were central issues The Pentagon and CIA again took opposing views. The Pentagon, defeated oo the MIRV claim,on other Soviel inventions,orrtples reiargeling-after-initial firing scheme thai CIA analysts considered beyond Soviet or even US technical capabilities- In early September. Smith infiirmed the DCI thatas in trouble with Laird and DIA. The next day Helms reported the receipt of laird's comments onhis time Laud concentrated his fire on the Soviet first-strike issue as expressedpecific paragraph that staled in condensed form ihe CIA view that the Soviets were unlikely at that time toirst-strike capability. ToIhe Secretary'sentagon official passed the wordto Helms thai the view* expressed in lhat paragraph ran contrary to

*Tiin luUPOtaByto mar thai ikriifUna tiu tmmmy epiwaV CtA osna-uuM Sosmi atu ami, ha* mot fmSs.oJ.VTRV..beincapable otoaf before tail. Tbe Sond, KwnlIRV


lint Mmaui. IS9eet in*une IWr) Meeting Simian. XlV "Miiininc Mttiti'icrrff mbcr I'WW.

top secret

cgntduo olssfm



Soviet Strategic Attack Forces

restricted data

wmo rob


TOP secbct covtojio

. Soviet Strategic Anted Fanes

position* taken publicly by ihc Secretary of Defense. Al ibe USIB meetingelms announced his intention to withdraw the offending paragraph from the estimate. In subsequent discussion, ihe Direclor of lhe Department of State's intelligence unit dissented and rein-tnxiuced the paragraphootnote

To many obsers'cis. inside and outside CIA, il has seemed lhal Helms buckled under pressure and forfeited his right as lhe premier USoffice! to speak out on intelligence issue* without fear or favor. This

may indeed- case. Iiui ilomplex question .md deserves careful and thoughtful scrutiny

Ihc episode was unprecedcnied Never beforeabinet mrmbei pushedifference in judgment to ihe point of direct con-(lontaiionirector of Central Iniclligcnee But then ihc political-social climate then prevalent in ihe United States and the personal lenspera-mem and style of the Nixon administration were also without precedent. The paranoid, confrontational style of the Nixon administration often equaled loyal disseni with poiilical betrayal.

laird, in fact, had invaded an area long reserved for intelligenceihe area ol Soviel strategic intentions. No clear-cut distinctionor should, between the realm of intelligence judgment and policy rationale liven so, one or the prime purposes of the NIK* on Sovielweapons systems had by praciice been lo exuniine Soviel strategic docinrte In relation to weapon development and lo discover the meaning, lhe purpose, and the intention behind thosetask CIA had peilonried fnr moreecade. This wits ground to which the CIA estimator* had fully as much nght as laitd. A* Smithrhere were always in8ew paragraph* ot general discussion of Soviet policies,nd evennd ibis was just the same kind ot ihing in dial respect that had been written for year* onu1 support* thii view: "It wasn't artificial language ginned up for this parucular controversy Ii was entirely in accord with the *on of thing lhal had been written about Soviet force planning, what motives guided them and so on. as in any otherird. however, ihi* was not merely an intelligence judgmentight lo exist independenilyolicy decision, which he could, after all. make quite legitimately enhcr on other grounds or in direct opposition to the intelligence judgment. To him, the lirst-slrikv claim was an essentia) part of the rationale supporting the decision to acquire an ABM system. He could accept no contrary view.

Some of ihcse considerations may seem clearer tn relrospeci lhan they did toho was subjected io pointed anduincd criticism from the Presideni, Ihc NSC adviser, and the Secretary of Defense. Nonetheless, one is leftroubling question as lo why Helms, who had held staunchly lo the Agency's view on ihcse questions for six months, bowed to laird's desire and had the offending paragraph removed

It seem* clear fromecollection* of this episode thai, in hisonflict between CIA and lhe Pentagon over Soviet first-sinke imen-lions ncveiatter of principle involving ihc jurisdiction of the DCI. for him. the decision to accommodate Laird bypecific paragraph from NIEas only another instance of the cootdinaiion process integral to producing National Intelligence Estimate* Av he told

"Smirh miarsK*pril im?.

"Huiwki* meivm. lu May

the Church committee during lu investigation.ational intelligenceat leastn Dirocior. was considered to be theapet USIB coniributed lo the process hut anybody could eoninb-uic to iheestimates staff, individuals in the White House. And the factaragraphentence was changed or amended after USIBderation was noton't really see an issue

As for ihe immediate issueoviel first slnke capability, he recallsattle royale over whethet il was the Agency's job lo decide definitively whether lhe Soviel Union had ils first-strike capability or did notirst-strike capability. And this became so contentious lhat it seemed almost impossible to get ii resolved. But this in no way signifies that he yielded to pressure from the While House

My rccolieetitsn is lhat Hie only time then: was anything like this paniculatly at issue was over the business of MKVs andfter alevtial meetings al the White House and talking with people I" Ihe Depaitaneni ofecame clear in me thai they a* Srau hadon'I UHnk iherc was any reason (oa me racressaniy tothai all eternal wisdom was vested in the Agency andHey said luil to be right and whatever anybody else said hade "politicalt didn't make anye at all.elieve that on that occasion and maybe two or threensisted that retain adjustments be made to order to accommodate other aotats ofashington"

Helms believed lhe Agency's primary task was to serve lhe President and his Immediate lieulenonts by keeping them infoimed steadily andwith intelligence information and analysis regarding globalIn accomplish this, the Agency had to retain its credibititv Agency estimates could not get through to then audience il CIA judgments were deemed one sided and partisan. This danger was greatest in Ihe area where poiilical partisanship was most keen- the Vietnam war and lhe Helms was extremely sensitive to this possibility and sought in every way to avoid identifying CIAarticular line on these issues. Nor wasoncern only of Niton's. McNamara. Helms believes, "would not have accepted an estimate thai said ihc Soviets were goingirston'l think Johnson would havehink the Agency's credibility would have been ruined will) Ihoscnce Nixonihc White House, (he positions on Soviet (mentions were reversed, but the difficulties facing Helms were in many respects similar To remain credible,etain access to the ears and minds of tbe lop leadership of the administration he was serving. Helms decided loaragraph iliai undercut one of the administration's main policy initiatives.

"(Wil .vaamiiscc. BoatW

April ISC

Helms'sl this particulard* completely with hi* himi* held conviction that tliroughout hi* career a*e resistedpressure* and upheld high srandard* of irnkpendente and inlegni> Me lake* direct issue, for example,omment in the Rockefeller Report thai the Director ul Central Intelligence should he an individual ofindependence, andelms regard* this as criticism ol his performance a* DCI and angrily reject* such an imputationould like to knowhowsacked in independence or lacked inOridn'targe constituency, either Republican orusn'l able to stand up to the problem.""

On another occasion, he again demonstrated the anguish andlhal suggestions of this nature caused him.ust say that ihe ihaige ihai ihe Agency was not objective, lhat rt did not attempt to deal fairly wilh the facts and controversies and van cms estimativehink has ab solurely no basis ine ha* remarked:

I doo'i know ol any time when thereincere effort to accommodate all the varying pressures and still come out wan what we thoughtanpn answer These things will always behose notin off debateould rimsiNy heirI did feel that rho was one of Ote avost import am function* the Agency had toit was fader Prendear Johnson or President Niton "

Prom Helms'* point of view, his task was to achieve consensus on maim intelligence judgments or. failing lhal. to heai all competing view, and preventhe President and the NSC the best judgment thai could be formed in that lightould like history to show that wc did out level best lo make these estimates sensible, to try to accommodate the varying points of view, to come out where we thought wc ought lo conic oul that we did an honest jobreat deal ofhe former DCI has observed "It isn'teel any great feelings of resentment oras being used, or lhal political pressuic was being pul on meielded. Il is only the fact that it isn't irue. and. therefore. Id like tbe record to show lhal it's not

Nol everyone ugrecd. To the Board oflimalcs, andiu its chairman. Abbot Smith, ihe removal of Ihe paragraph in NIE8t Laird's request was anythingart ol the normalprocess It was unprecedented and keenly damaging to AgencyIt was. as Smith says, "the one and only time that politicians caused us lo change pariinished

Ttwlrftlki. II. "Hrhawsj


Abbot Smith is rclucuni to blame Helms lor thi> episode and admires bis overall record on National Inielligjencc Estimate* But the episode with La ml rankled the chairman. In responseiitd's request that the of lending paragraph he deleted, he recalls, "Helms called ittcidn't protest as muchight have or shouldhould havehe paragraph was not all that impottani. he explains, since its purport was repeated elsewhere in theas ordered that il be deleted, and, ol' course, il was Helms'* papet and he did itidn't blame him at all Why should he oppose (he Secretary ol

Smith nonetheless saw thencident as marking the onsetlunge in CIA prestige:

I look upon that aiunaiu; printwhen csvo/ibing went

The Niion adeaiMwauon waa really Use fust one in whack intelligence was nut another form til politics And that mm bound kt be rfiussrouvhink it was dioaslious "

Huiicnga. at lhat time Abbot Smith's deputy and later his sucrcssot as Board of National Estimates chairman, agree* that this "unfortunate episode"ad precedent li was symptomaticendency thaimore strongly lateriew ihe efforts of Ihe Agency on this kind of subject matter as not reliable and lucking In intellectual integrity and soe has recalled "In other words, itignificant episodet was the first episode of its kind that indicated the uiittholesomcness of the later period Huizcnga also believes the issues in the dispute were important and is dismayed by the consequences of the Agency's retreat

Tbe question latolvrd in tbe dupoted language was essential. Ii au) not have Veu essential to ihe analysis in thai pamcular papet. bul what Ihc pastiuM were fired up over was Ihe question of whai the Soviets* intended by these programs Now with narrow construction you could say this language was not essential to lhal :i' paper, but it nevertheless was central lo the ccauTartiie pee raises In people's minds over how in trunk about the meaning of Soviet uiograms.

But Hutzcnga is even more reltictanl lhan Smilh to find fault withandling of an uxident that he feels reflected dairugingh on CIAAfter all. what else could Ihc DCI do?uppose by the lime the affair reached that son of crunch where the Secretary of Defense personally is demanding (he removal of language,idle late in the game to try midihe matter so as lo avoid cunfroruatiiMnle has observed "But it's very hard tor me io see how the conflict of attitudes toward intelligence


"Huiiencaay IvM. "Ibul.

could have born avoidedo in Ihc last analysis he accept*iewas preferable lo yield in order to icuun Agency credibility forissues. He credits llrlin* wirh acting in accord with honest convictiononcept of doinglui wa* best for the Agency

I amhaiwanted to do ihe traditional ton of (oh Intry to deliver on hunesrly conceived product But he wa* underpressure, and itenam ease he. as tome would say. ifimmcd.his mind what he was tiling was delivering ihe essential without beingprovocative That is how he construed uVof the paragraph

ihcn Ihe gnrnnil that it wasn't necessary to the essential argument at the papet. in which the papei was really addressedieiiy fine judgment to nuke. For pcoplr who were ma involved to come along later and say "Tins fe'low really gave away the More" lacks comprehrnuiin lor the ccanplcxiry of his situalion.

li is significant lhat neither of these [wo Board chaitmen attaches any Maine or find* diiect fault wiih Helms himself To Smith, in retrospect, the fault is to be lound not with Helms but withewing CIAat iuvi another lorm ol poaWCaV' hadedI politic m.ectelary of Defense, in seeking the removal of judgment* contraryolicy he favored. Itui/cnga see* the situalion similarly bul alsotheii ni difficulty strategic intelligence, "honestlyaces not only in stressful times like the Nixon administration but also even in calmer eras. Heerhaps more cynically than the tecotd will support, that the whole endeavor is too idealistic to succeed in the rough-and-tumble political world:

la retrospect, youeally do aot Believe lhal aa intelligence otgiairainsn ia thisit ante to deliver an honest analytical product withoutthe ml of political to*-lenmin By andrunk that tbe leniency lo neat intelligence politic ally increased over Ibii whole period. Aad it's mainly over issue* like Southeast Asia and over ibe growth of Soviet ttrateck force* thai were extremely divisivehiol ii'i probably naive in retrospect to have believed what most ot ui believed al onehai you could deliver an honest analytical product nod expect ioaken at face value as an honest effort in which you have tiled lo avoid any sort of partisan pleading or position-taking Implications for policy. Thai whole attitude was probably naive. By andhink thai intelligence las had relatively link impact on ihc policies thai we'veci ihc yeats. Kclatively none. In certain particular die urnerhaps innghu and facts thai were provided had an effect on what we did- But onlyery narrow range of circumuantre* By and targe, the intelligence effort did not abet the premise* wiih wtilth putmcal leadership came lo ofJWr. Tbey brought in their baggage and they more or feulong. Ideally, what had brea lupposed wa*cnoM inielbgeaxe analysisunl Ihc policy side to reexa-nune premises, tender policy ma tint more (ophiii Mated. closer to the reality of Ihe world Those were ihe large ambitionshink wete never

Altec reviewing the circumstance* Htm produced the deleiiun of the contentious paragraph inense ol dissatisfaction remains. It is not quite good enough lo find Laird totally responsible Smith believes the incident markedurning point" and the onset of an irreversible trend, although in the next breath he characterizes this as "anK may be more judicious to accept llui/enga's view that the partisan political atmosphere of the time made an already difficult task impossible, and to look upon Laird's intervention as the symptom rather than the causerogressive disease. Slill, Ihe best interests of tbe United Stalesthat informed judgments on strategic Questions aot be stifled forpuiposes If one accepts that everyone, including laird, acted out of an honest conviction (hat he was doing what was best for the nationalthe fact remains lhat the result was not favorable to lhal interest nor io the organizations directly involved.* difficult not to wish lhal some other resolution could have been found

ll seems clear that the incidentreater impact on the Office of National lisliinates than Helms realized. Helms regarded yielding to laird's pressure as neither damagingrestige norad precedent. Bul his two chief lieutenant* iu ONE did. even though they understood the political situation and were sympathetic to Ihe bind he was in. Ahbol Smith wonders in retrospect whether he should have resigned instead of stoically accenting Helms'* decision Perhaps be should have let Helms know bow keenly he fell, perhaps Helm* should have done more to justify his actionsit staff But under the pressure of the situation, each assumed the other understood how he perceived Ihe matter and said nothing.

In the aftermath of ihe controversy ahoul iheresidential Assistant Kissinger requested thai future Nlfcs on Soviet advanced systems present in full detail Ihe data and evidence underlying the judgments made. As Helm* noted at the lime, this requiredharp break" from pastand would produce estimates "more specific in detail, more technical in (their) discussion, and more invols-cd in soning and evaluating theStill, he reminded Smiih. "We arc nilommon task: namely, to produce tm estimate most responsive to the needs of policy people as they have been explicitly expressed tohe estimates produced to answer Kissinger's request were lengthy, technical, and minutely detailed In effect, Kissinger and NSC staff had wtesied from the Board of National Estimates the role it had previously played in silting judgments from the available evidence and transmitting them to the President and (he NSC for use in making policy decisions. In any cscnt, ihe While House was pleased with the new style estimate, and inelms received from Presidentetter of commendation regarding

'Heumf,tf for0 "Mornine Monie| Mminci. II

Still, in llii turbulent Nixutt yeuis political infighting uvcr US policy in response to the Soviet threat went on unabated There were leaks io the press of classified intelligence hy panics who wished to advance their cause in the flay. Helms, trying loteady coarse and to retain the integrity of CIA intelligence,etter inI to Kissinger. Secretary of Slate William Rogers. Laird, and Gen Earl Wheeler. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Stall, expressing his concern overf these leaks. He also ordered his press relations officers lo hall background briefings nn Soviet militaryhe ncsl week Trier( 'limc< ran Ihe so-called Pentagon Papers, whichirtual hemorrhage of classified intelligence.

Political partisanship was reflected increasingly within thecornniunily. and it became more and more difficult lo icach aon vital strategic icsucs Helms recognized that in some cases CIA could hcvt fulfill us function by stating its position independently when agreement was impossible. Inor example, he defended before USIH the position taken indcpcndenlly of the majority by CIA inKirsiiiv Pact Fonei for OpemiUms inheyear he supported ihe independent CIA position in. Soviet Foreign Policies and Outlook for US-Stwielighlyand courageous stand on his pari since CIA held, in opposition to the Pentagon, that the USSR had nol as yet decided whethei to tryeaningful advantage over the US in strategic weapons. This, il will be recognized, is in largecstaiemcni of the CIA viand on the first strike issue. Despite ihe painful history of thiselms chose2 to champion the CIA stew and to present il without apology to the President. Kissinger, and Laird.

Taking Hclms's six-year siewaidship of National Intelligence Estimateshole, it seems clear that he addressed this aspect of his job seriously and tried to meet the needs of the President and the NSC with coordinated papers. Erom the outset, however, he encountered difficulties owing to the absence of an administration-wide consensus on Joieiga policy issues The NIE system bad been designed to meet the requirement* of the Truman and Eisenhower administrations, and it tended to be Mo rou-linized and inflexible for the lohnson and Nixon adrninistrations. both of which preferred an ad hoc foreign policy. Still. Helms sought hy steady pressure io make the NIEs responsive on urgent questions and io applaud their success when il was achieved. He found il easier to teach targets in the While House with custom-tailiucd CIA papers 3nd briefings, and to these he resorted increasingly as Ihe years advanced. It is io an accounting of these efforts that wc will now turn

*vs>m(Q Stf*<Mba Ml.

Wirhin the Dirrxtoeiie of Intelligence research and analytical skills had maturedegree thai gave CIA acknowledged preeminence in the world of inielligence pcodxicuon In the early years of ihe Agency tins had not been the case, and coordination with the intelligence units of the Departments ol State and Defense had produced markedly better papers. By theowever, the contributions ol these otheragencies consisted of differences in perspective, oftenolicy or departmental bias. This: shifi in the balance of analytic expertise and competence, combined with live quick and pointed response capability of CIA Dl production, led Helms lo turn increasingly to CIA papers rather than coordinated estimates lo meet the needs ol ihe President and the NSC.

The Directorate of Intelligence served as spokesman for the Agency and produced ihe bulk of this norxoordinitcd. or "unilatetal" output, alrhotrgh Helms rccasionally looked to the Board oftimUes. the Directorate of Science and Technology, and the Clandestine Services for papers As the production workhorse of CIA, ihe Directorate of Inielligence.ack Smiih. produced an array of publications)

ol (uriviu) played pethaps Ihe

key role in churning out this mass of finished intelligence. Other producing offices included Ccortomic Researchtrategic Researchnd Basic and Geographic Intelligence (OBGI).

The principal vehicle lor ilw esptcssion of Agency judgment on major oVveropn>eau vu the CIA Intelligence Vic mot and cm These studiesin length, from Iwo or three page*everal hundred, and were reserved lor addressing important issues when it was felt the Agency'sand analysis had special pettinencc. As il became increasingly dilTiculi lo teach coordinated judgments on such mailers in ihc Nominal Intelligence Rsiimates, lhe tendency grewurn to the CIA Intelligence Memorandum for conveying Agency views. This became especially nue on (he major Vietnam issues.

Strategic mailer* aad theSoviet threat were alsovuhjects of Agency analysis for the President Farly in Ihc lohnson administration Helms insiiucted his deputies thai "difficult decisions" con-fionicd lhe While House on the ABM and requested thai in their work cm such questions as the development of Soviet advanced weapons systems, they remain objective andomewhat later he advised them ihai the While House was deeply interested in disarmament issues and urged lhal appropriate studies be published on the subject" He alsoord of caution, similar to his advice regarding making policy on Vietnam, on the subject of US-Soviet disarmament negotiation* then in prospect He anticipated numerous requests for Agency analysis of lhe principal issues and called for thoroughly professional objectivity in response Heurged the avoidance of ad hominem comment*."

Despite the confidence lohnson placed in Helms's judgment, he did not always accept ihe information or analysis ihe DCI provided. The war in Indochina demonstrate* thin innumerableuch an instance alsojust before the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia inor some time Dl analysts had been closely watching the tense politicalin Czechoslovak ia and the Soviet summer maneuversstein buiopc. The Office of Strategic Research (OSRl under Bruce Clarke

"Monmt itmmmft.

U tmrnffcalurii wis.

observed In laic July llial ihe Red Army seemed lo be swinging in steadily widening circles. On one of those swings. Clarke's analysis observed. Soviet foftcs mighl suddenlytraight line and march direcUy into Czechoslovakia. Rut no reliable inielligence indicated lhat ihe Kremlin had alreadyecision to use military force to bring Czech dissent lo heel.

On his way oul ihe door for one of ihe Picsidcnt's Tuesday luncheons (which incidentally did not invariably fall onlclms asked OCTast minute update on the Czech situation llie only new item that OCI chief Richard Lehman had was an unconfirmed report from United Press International lhat the Snviet Politburo, customarily away from Moscow on vacation in August, was meeting in the Soviet capital. This seemed to suggestajor issue was under consideration, llclmsto know the UPI reporter and thought him to be usually right. On the basis of Utile more than Mils, plus an inielligence professional's intuition, he concluded that ihe Soviets were about to invade Czechoslovakia and decided to warn tbe President

Drinking sherry with his gucvis in the living room before lunch. Johnson pulled Secretary of Slate Dean Rusk aside nnd conversed with him in low tones. The DCI had no opportunity lo pass his information about the Politburo meeting to the President until ihey were seated at the lunch table. When he dsd. Johnson said. "Oh.onT ihmk you're right about that They're talking aboutelms found this quite mysterious bulfimii that and oilier veiled refeicnccs lhal llie President was about to moke some initiative toward the Soviets. Alter lunch ihe DCI sought out the assistant who had taken notes and asked him what was happening The young officer swore himecrecy and then told him thai oo the lollowing day there was tooint Washington-Moscow announcement of aconference on arms control This had been secretly arranged and might ultimatelyrip to Movcow bv Johnson. But Helms was not to be deterred. He said. "You heard my comments about theant to be suie they're in theThey're ine was assured.

Helms wasestaurant that evening when his call buzzer went off. The Operations Center at Headquarters told him the invasion was on. An emergency NSC meeting would convene at the Whileew hours. As Helms relates it. the National Security Council meeting "look two minutes lo discuss (he invasion and the ensuing hour lu figure out how ihcy were going to kill the joint announcement lhat was scheduled for the nest day" and to keep word of the postponed announcement out of the papers "In other words, how they were going to tidy up what wasa package that had just diopjied on the floor and splattered all over

ihehru- in no irxorci thai any of the participants rcincrnhered to lhank the Director for hi* attempt eight orarlier in warn tbcm of the Soviet invasion *"

Producing information nt only half the job, equally important Wmt delivering it in timely fashion to the Ley people. While Dl publication*rucial part in this task, they were not the only means ofIhe Agency's judgments. Helm* lound lhat in many instance* Agency inielligence was most effective if he presented it in person. Heind that deall quickly with complex suhslanlive problems, spoke easily, and conveyed an assurance of sincerity and objectivity. On many occasions the DCI wus able to use these characteristics lo bring CIA information and judgments to highly placed officials who mighl otherwise not have been reached al all.

As Director. Helrm relied heavily on informal meeting* with Cabineto discus* vubsiantive intelligence matirtv During the Johnson presidency the DCI met regularly with Rusk. McNamara. and Defense Secretary Clark Clifford at Ihe Tuesday luncheons This gave Helmsknowledge of ihe problems and development* of keenest urgency for them. He used (his knowledge io convey to his deputies at his dailymeetings the subjects on which they ought lo concentrate forcolleeiion andhe minutes of the morning meetings during his six-yeat tenure are doited with pionipling* (torn Ihe DCI toattention on (hishai matter that was burdening ihe mind of one of the Secretaries. He was also meticulous in passing back to his deputies the com menu or compliments he had received on some piece of Agency work.

Helm* strove to ensure close relations with ihe Department of Defense under lohnson, but relations deteriorated during the NinonAlthough McNamarateady stream of dailyperiodicals, and memoranda containing both short* and long-range studies, he stilleed for tegular sessions in which he could askand probe judgment* being made about Vietnam. Helms assigned Carvet the job of meeting with McNamara for thisoutine evolved where Carver traveled to the Pentagoneek for one-on-one sessions with McNamara lasting anywhere betweeninute* and an houralf. McNamara was sufficiently taken with the utility of tts-i* rercedurc

IleumI Apr* IW.

Pttc Rcpanene- Conmeai* oa IV.'ia

diMd. attached draft copy ol llouo Sckvt Commute* oona* Rep-m. OCA.. rim ;rcpons (hit Halmi mid ih* Piendeai'iflligence Advisory Itotiid in Oclober fXA mat ihe failure lo detest llie Soviel invniinn jheail uf luiic 'tlivlitsics rue.

to recommend it It) Clifford, hit, successor. Carver continued the weekly hri cling* Tor Clifford, who recommended them in turn to Lund, his succes-sot."

This arrangement provided the Secretary of Defenseirect channel to CIA lhal could provide intelligence and accept requests for more information and analysis. It gave Helms another direct link, through an officer whom the Secretary of Defense knew was empowered to speak for the DCI and the Agency on InoVxhina-related mattcft. to the man who. after the President, was lhe most important dec ivtoo maker in Washington on mallets relating lo lhe war. As Carvet notes, "ihis facilitated Agency-DOD [coordination like nobody's business, and it was terribly use-fulot of thingsi was an unusual arrangement, bul the limes and problems were themselves unusual. More to Ihe point, il served the in-leresis ol both the Agency and the Secreiarylensc.

Nixon's Inauguration had irrtportanl effects on the Dl as on theestimates |

Jlte and the President, he informed

Smith, wereheir aiicniion on the Soviel Union and Western Europe

'"mi* aitatigemeat continued under loo mow Srxreiane- of Defense. Ellioi Richnnhon and lame* Schlciingrr. ban ended when Prraidenl Ford appointed Donald Kiirmlcld a. Secretary. Rumifeld. fjwvsrat "paranoid,om meed lhat ilomchoa teat bv ihc Ajemy lo ipy on him. And he wanted no part of thai, to lhal wavarver interview. IJ

'"Carver inicrvicw. I].

Kissinger ami his NSC stall, on the oilier hand,'oracious appeiiic for Agency inielligence. ind llclmsuccession of CIA risernoranda. ultrasensitive Oandcsiinc Services report v. and othci niaterials to Kissinger, a* -cll as to Laird and Secretary of State William Rogers-Much of the Agency's output svas channeled to NSC subgroups, with specialized npcrational functions, which became active during Ihe Nixon yeais under Kissinger's influence and. usually, under his chairmanship Helms participated in most of Ihe more senior of these groups, especially those involved with covert action Others he assigned to his deputies. DDI Smith, for example, served as his representative in the Senior Reviewody chargedshaping policy papers beforeto the NSC.

On occasion. Helms instructed one of his deputies or vcnuiemeetabinet officci to hricf himpecific

very early in me new administration, as we have scon. Lairdthe tone ol the vuccerding years, during his campaign on behalf of Ihe Safeguard ABM system, by greatly exaggerating the capabilities of the Soviet tCRM. theIA's stubborn insistence that the availablewould not vupport the Pentagon's claims did nothing to commend Agency performance to the Nixon administration. The subsequent public controversy over Soviel intentions toirst-strike capability, set offteady scries of press leaks from both sides in tlte dispute, fur-theied Ihis disalfection and quite clearly fed President Nixon's alreadysuspicions that the Agency and its Direclor were not al all pointshe CIA position on Ihe enemy order-or-battle ligurcs, which as wc have seen draggedn all likelihood appeared to Ihe White House as further evidence of CIA unreliability, ll probably was too late to persuade the Nixon administration that CIA's contention that the numbers were higher than MACV believed was not another proof thai the Agency took an iraicpendent line for partisan purposes.

The final Iwo years of Helms'* tenure were mercifully tree of major disputes with the Nixon administration over inielligence judgments By this time the NSC Slalf had established channels through which the bulk of

CIA's production i" support of While House policy was requiredove. Following (her thehich the Kissinger stall lelt itself called upon to resolve by ciamiiung ihe intelligence evidence atew formal lor estimate* on Soviet military capabdities was required ol the intelligence community. This (ormmencs of optional analyses and exhaustive displays of the evidence underlying each judgment. Amode of presentation was expected for CIA intelligence memoranda Helms tiied to tailor Agency papers xcordingly. On one occasion he can-uoncd his lieutenantsarticular studyaim America wasit thin on facts substantiatingatter on which we have had some sniping from the Whiteut the White House apparently wanted il boih ways. Only shortly before. Helms had admonished OCI for using the phrase "'we have nobe NSC Staff complains, he sand, that CIA shirks its duly in aotudgment even in ihe absence of evidence.**

In his years as OCI. Helms witnessed the collapse of Ihc fnieign policy consensus on which the Agency's role as gatherer and disseminator of intelligence was based. Amid the intense inlerbureaiaaatic disputes of the Johnson and Nison years, the CIA's contribution might well haveirrelevant, even unwelcome to policymakers. Helms recognized that the Agency's survival depended on his ability to mainlain its position in the policy process, and he struggled to keep CIA's output responsive to the changing and often conflicting cfemands of the While House and Cabinet dcoanments Nixondeep mistiust ol disscnicrs within his ownmade this task more difficult, and Helms had to be careful not to appeal committed to positions opposed by the While House. Ollen this meanl retreating from judgments painstakingly developed by Agency analysis. In making such compromises, Helms made die greater good of the Agency his fusj pnoniy.


Chapter 3

Hclms's Management Style: Indochina and Operations

Russell Jack Smith

Richard Hchm served as DCIontroversial period of recent history. The Vietnam war and the revelations disclosed by the Watergate scandals remain subjects of fierce debate among historians and former government officials. Hclms's role as chief manager of numerous coven operations during this period has also been disputed Critics charge him with emphasizing clandestine operations at the expense of intelligence, with favoritism toward OSS cronies, and ssith mismanagingin laos and Vietnam. This chanter gives the perspective of olficers mostlythe Agency's top echelons who served under Helms during those years.

For many ClA officers during. Helms was ihe quintessential Clandestine Servicesuiet, contained, and serious, he seemed to embody the key attributesew breed of American bureaucrat, the professional intelligence officer. Through personal example and ihe daily administration of clandestine activities, he established aof style and performance that young officers entering the CTarsdcstinc Services found admirable aad worth emulating The challenges the Agency faced during the lohnson and Nixon administrations strained Hclms's bureaucratic skills. As younger officers watched Helms cope with the repercussions of Vietnam and Watergate their respect deepened

'rijitdctiinr Senicrilieirmc name (ur DiKeioraie of Plani

One such yon' i: offitci. Clifion R. St rat hem. recalls that when he joined the Agency1 helms "warsominant law lor"

w'e grew uptbe lact thai Mr Helmsry dee ruse elemrra la i.he early stage* of your career, you found itaat he was thr one lhal made thean icnsrtaboremef iht* man. apparently because of his very intense ikrncanor at thai nine. He. I'm sure,ery active sense ot humor but on youngthus* rays never fell'

Strut hern's account of his first facc-lo-facc encounter with Helmsboth Ihc future Director's standard* of performance und thein which he Impressed on young subordinate* his reported to Headquarters after spending his firstwith the Agency ovctseas. Soon after, his supervisor assigned hintand clear forong

chore lhal required approvals ftorti officers hi departments scattered across the Agency's Foggy Bottom compound. When he arrived al Helms'* office, he was mcl with lhe command, "ReadI wa*irathem recallstarteduaking voice to read this cable, not really knowing whether to start with ihc heading or where toe had begunead uhen the phone rang This was Straibcrn's fust exposure to ihc pressure* ofnd his alarm mounted rapidly as Helm* dealt with the call Iteltm listened briefly, pronouncedairly firmnd then luld his taller.aid,aid no before, and it's stilllamming down the phone. Helm* reached over ihe desk, snatched the cable, and said "I'll read itcttain bis career was finl*hed. Siniihcrn listened as Helm* castigated both the cable and its author. "Have hime snapped, "and when he can learn to wntc English, bring ithisgaveew respect forepuiutlon as Ihe bestwriter in the Agency."

In addition to his demand for excellence in performance. Helmstwo other qualities thai particularly impressed young officers:dedication to the job and an almost spartan lack of oticniation. Sirathem speaks in awe of ihe long hours Helms worked "He was always there. Whenever you had to gel Mr Helms, he wasnconcerned for the trappings of office, heilapidated Plymouth tu work "You could actually hear thi* caristance, il was such an old wreck. And everyone, you know, was very impressed with that factt Slrathern recall* it. Helms'* dedication was cootagtous.hinkerhaps mac of those characteristic* thai really rtsbhed off on Ihc case officer* oi that

-aarmtsvap*anl iw1uaatarapril iw%


period, that son of grew up under him They first of all were laughi the kinds nf discipline lhal he expected, and you knew thai you couldn't gel by with anything lesseiccnl.'"

Although he insisted on excellence. Helm* wa no Iflop level pcrfomiancc. he alsohennd was quick to offerompliment or, occasionally,Stratheiti balances Ihe story of his first encounler withan account of his promotion to GS l" In theefor operations in Lam and frequently putr TOansweiingalaxy of inteigovernmcnialhe was passed over by the annual promotion list. Whenanother rising youngas to Ihe reason, they

were told thai ihey were loo young and had not served long enough in grade The two men rejected these criteria, arguing lhat mem andought lo lieromotions panel listened to ihciiandecond list, with their names on it. ioew week* later. StrMhcrn waa sen prised tobonc call from the DCIclmv said.ust wanted to tell you howm lhal you got youre went on for "upwards ofinutes, thanking me for all Iheod done to help supportas just absolutely" lor Strathem. Ihts epitomized Helms "That irnpression of Mr. Helms never left mc. thai he was always prepared io at least reward someone who made thehat has ioasting impression of Dick Helms as

Not all CIAf course, were a* respectful To many. Helm*ival for advancement, and loenacious bureaucraticWilliam Nelson remembers an occasion when Helms was Demo Director for Planse hadeetingfficers toovert action that "all of us al tne working level though!errible idea "

Wc weni in and tutdeerrible idea but no. lie was going lo do ll. So he went ahead and did it and il nirrted out Solutees alter this operation hit the fan. Dickccuag of all the same people who had been ia*-oWed in ihe raevioosaad he went around (he room and with great dcxieiiiy dccipnaicd everybody theic And the outcsine was. the only man who had notrong judgment was Dick Helms

It was.asterful tour dc force, tbe way be went about it It wasrilliant example ofreat inlightcr be was.

Wild Vfrirf

you know, wiih buieaucratic how to do thor- "

He had iin awfully good sense of jusi

Helms a* Manager nf Operations

In addition to these elements ol personal style, the files from Hclms's period as Director and conversationsumber of his top aides reveal olhei characteristics Helms exhibited in managing the clandestinessde of CIA First, bearge measure nf dailyty fee clandestine operations to high-level subordinates, for the most pan he intervened directly only when the reputation or security of the Agency was at risk. Secondly, heonsiderable pan of his energy tomatters selecting anil placing in key posts officers who could sue cessfully assume the high degree of responsibility he delegated Thirdly, he preferred andarger share of hs> personal attention to clandestinecotto covert action, although he acknowledged the importance of coven action operations in support of US policy, especially in wartime. Finally, as DCI. he displayed an acute senvitiviiy to the pulses and vibrations of the Washington scene and acted with speed and decisiveness to exploit opportunities to enhance the Agency's position and to protect il from emerging dangers

When asked to characterize Helms'v management style, his formei associates usually mention Tint his penchant for delegating responsibility for operations As George Carver put it. Helms did not try toBasically. Dick kept control by trusting hi.expecting us to refer lo him things that he needed to know otthat we felt he really hadake and, within that framework, letting us essentially make our own judgments and do what we wanted to do."'

Such an approach suggests the confidence Helms placed in hisresponsible manager can delegate authority generously unless he hasecond characteristicwith Helms. William Colby, who served in several senior posts under Helms and later became DCI himself, rcrncmbers the strongHelms put on personnelfor each job the right man. who could accept responsibility and perform the tasks it brought him. "Dickot of his thought process thinking aboutolby has said, adding lhal Helms was characteristically concerned about who went where, and about how be could help particular officers.*

'William Nctum. inwrnc*. Smilli. lapc (ecordmn. WxhiitgiDa. DC.pril lull Iharrafter cited as Nation interviow. JO.

Carver, tmeivKwnstih.cufdinf wlirungmn. DC* I

used ai Carver (aarrvira.arch"WJfcjnn CoUSj. taasrsv- byI WK lapr Mcswifeaf. WadwWjiaa DC. IS) thereafter cited ai Coast-II


For Helms, lilting the right min to the job hadartel long in-tcresi. deepened by yean of experience in the Clandestine Service* a* Chief of Opetulions and DDP. This interest remained strong when beDCI. although the daily pressures and responsibilities did not permii ihe same degree of personal attention to every key assignment. For this be relied heavily on his successive DDPs, Desmond KiuGcinld and Thomas Kuramcssincs. delegating toajor role in screening candidates for these posts. Nelson recalls thativision chief he would discussselection in the first instance with Kaiamevsines. Alter finding one or sevcial promising candidatesarticular post Karamcssines would Hull their names by Helms. In personnel selection, Nelson recalls. "Tom never did anything without Dick'sfter Karanvssines hadHelms. "He wouldn't say, "Dick doesn't want ihis fellow to go' But be wouldhink maybe we ought to try somebody else."'" Helms has similar recollections. When matters of assignments came up in his daily meetings with Karamessincs. he would make his opinion knownnew all the people,id continue the policy of signing off on all station chief appointments,ould see who was going where andidn't like it. slop ii in nme ""

Helms'* colleagues and subordinates recognized his preference for classiccoven acuon. and Helms himself agrees.tailede has observed, "il was somethingas murr interested in, bow you dad it and so forth, but thi*ersonal predilection, icmprramcntal it youven *o. Helms readily conceded that covert action had its place amongiuly believe lhat in wartime or where you have militaryyou ought to push in the slack, everything you can possibly do. and no holds barred -Tet her go. If fellows are going lo lose their lives asin the Army or Marines, or airmen in the Air Force or Navy, orelse, it's at that point, it seems to me, that anything that you can do to

help them in the war you ought ton peacetime coven actios seemed toubious option.hink my reservations about cenam type* of

CA activities had much more io do with oilier pans of Ihe world |than Vietnam) and other times, and whether we really should be putting in ibe

kind uf effort we were putting

Colby also felt Helms'* interest lay mote in espionage lhan in coven

action, where Colby's own interest* lay. In Colby's view, this had benefits

for CIA. especially in Indochina.

"Nehon interview.

"Kii Inrtlnlcrvirw. Smith, law recording. Wuhiagion. DC.1

Ovndicr cilejllttrcs inlemrsv.l I

Itfefaatst Helta, lantnbrI filial, tape4 ApriIhreraltrr cited as Nrlrmpril Hill

I (hint, Ihc balance between ihc iwo of us wj* rather goodenseanted lo do ihe things and heust atet nl ol them and thaioth in get ihna stated and lo gel nd of them Itaatithould hate done lit was tight oaapne the Apency no mocr. and yet an toatat of Ihr program* there was aubody else to get ihe damned thing* going."

Finally, every senior officer who worked with Helm* while he wa* DCI was keenly aware of his sensitivity io Ihc shilling current* of interest and influence throughout official Washington, and io the impact they might have on the Agency. Helms'* top criteria for judging inielligencewcte its relevance, timeliness, and cogency in relation lo Ihe dominant concerns of lhe White House (especially lhe President! and the Congress Hi* standard* for clandestine operations were similar In particular, he was quick to perceive that any kind of operational mi sup could create dangers for the Agency if ihe Presideni were not immediately informed. Heequal solicitude toward Congress. "There wa* oneearned about dealing withe later remarked

[Ifl you got down mere first and told member* of youi committee oflhat had gone tour ot gone wrong before they read it in the ivc wspaperv or heard about ii from umtcbody else, ihey could bu vety understanding and stand wiih you and help you and so forth, if they fell thai they had been liken in and lold about Ihii in advance so lhat they could ptotccl ihtmsclvcs against cniitsim from the outside But when they were caught hy turpiise by one of these thing* by reading it ia the nrwirtapeiing told byihey really could get very flinty nsdecd."

The files and the recollections of has top officer* arc filled with instances in which Helms moved with dispatchead off danger* or to esplonfor the Agency

Preoccupation Willi Indochina

The dominance of the war in Indochina ovei the mind of official Washington grew steadily throughoutntil it came to obsess the capital in thend. The CIA* daily activities reflected this concern The Directors calendar wa* crammed with meetings at the White House, briefings of the Congress, and di*cu**ion* withedhe reports and estimates flooding oui of Langley, and to ihc manifold clandestine operations taking place overseas. In

"Colli) iitirrvirn. II Apnl'"Helm* interview, liJ.

Vietnam,nillion American troop* weir fighting Viet Cong and North Vietnamese forces. North Vietnamese supply line* tan through Cambodia andaking ihose "neutral" stale* imponant ancillary theaters ol combal. CIA officers in Lao* had run an opciatmn lo arm and train Montagnard tribesmen since the.

Consonant with Hclms's bellcl Ihm when the United Slates found il-self in war CIA should do "everything you can possibly do. no holdshe Agency ran innumerable operations in Vietnam to which it committed the bulk of its personnel and resources Besides the usualinielligence collection, theontribution to the war effort in Indochina consisted of rural pacification programs, "nation-building" political programs, cross-border sabotage operations, and an array of coven disinformation activities against

[Helms presided

over this mullilaceled and intricately tlclaltCd range ol activities in the only way an intelligent executive could by generous delegation ofto officer* ia whom he placed trust

In most respect* Helms oversaw (TA programs in Vietnaman-ncr consistent with the management style discussed earlier The DCI also had to direct andost of new and continuing operations around the world, bul none brought inlo pluy Ihe full array of clandestine activity thai Indochina demanded. Helms was convinced that CIArucial role to play in Indochina, and this wa* also where the full glare of White House attention focused

George Carver, who served as the Special Assistant for Vietnam Affairs fSAVAl thwugtsout the Helms regime, observed Helms daily ir. his role as manager of OA programs in Indochina. "Heery, verytaskmaster, and he never let anybody doubt as lo who had theresponsibility and the concomitantarver remembers. "But. he was willing to stake out fur his seniorphere within which they had largely discretionary latitude and then let them go exercise their discretion If he didn't like whai they were doing, he'd get somebody else to doarver explains that Helms was able to proceed in this fashionarge extent because of his association over many years with the officers io whom he was delegating this responsibilitynow that in many context* this would be regardederribly pejorative word."tu Curver. but "you've got lo remember the clubby atmosphere in which youroup of people who knew each other well, who were used to working together, within which therereat bond of mutual respect, and who would lake order* or instructions by indirection as well as IdarctlylhomasHclms's Deputy Director for Plans,ey role in this regard, meeting nearly every nunning with the

'Carter iMeivirss.. 'lh/d

DifctHii highlightingecision* mi which be needed guidance ithea he wa*instructed lo use hu own judgment on derails. Samuel Halpern re mem he is one occasion when Kat.imcssincs returned from discussing ihe relative

george Ou'Vi

i ol some proposedwith Helms. Halpernal Ihc OOP'sHelms was lonictit lo letdecide whetherthe operation "Tthought trial wa* strange and*o. Aad'Well, he's very busy withof ni her things and hebig boys andry it, go ahead andIf wc don't. I'orgci about it.

Fvcn though be delegated suhxiantlal responsibilityi* seniorHelm* reserved the nght to intervene at any point in the planning

or implcineniing of anoften did so. Nelson remembers

sometime* being taken by surprise when he accompanied Helms to meet


You weir never quite Mite Isow he wa* going to play it There wvic *omc progiam* hr was liar: there were othei program* lhal mifhl even have. io some def rer. .nigiruled in some fashion ssiUtUi the Agency, which he would alio*goo the Whatehen he'd dvuot iheni down Or. yotjery subtle way. say.Dn'i km aboutnd take iheode of thehink hr fell ratal thoseught to be espmed tu those people downtown Theyhance to look at litem lb was gooig lo voice hi* own lecling* admit. with theirs Riit he wasn't goinj io bottle il up.*

To Helms, delegation of iminediaie responsibility did nolf final responsibility. Nor did it mean lhat blame was heapedihe man responsible for an operation when it went wtong. Helms believed that ultimate responsibility lay with him as Director, and he sought neither to

"samuel retoiiiiiig. waslringlon.iillicrrihci suedllalpcra interview.j) 'nelsonpil iwtt.

pass ihe blame noturden his subordinates with the pressure he Icli from ihe White Mouse or elsewhere. To cite one example, the Agency's continuing failure to satisfy White House desires for high-level inielligence about Vietnamese Communist thinking and strategythat could he obtained only by peneuating senior circles in Hanoi or the Viet Cong leadership- brought intense Presidential disptcasuit Thisfell daily by Helms during the Johnson administration -grew even greater in the Nixon yours andnd icli vencs* Helms quietly shouldered this rancor himselfon't recall lhat Helms wasthose particular barbs into work and tone subordinate has remcnibeted-hink heot of il on himself. He didn'l pass the heat along as much as you would havearver makes ihe same point'

He ri cried thr pressurees all the results we could pmuNy get. hu) Dick did us the service of realizing that when we ctplainrd the technical, profes-sionnl difficulty of trying inommunist command apparatus.we were not trying to throw up excuses for nut getting something done and tm we were faced with an ciiraurdiaarily ditiVni- prorrtcm,ad very little leverage, aad thateie doiag thre possibly could doask that wa* almost impossiblea!pern adds thai "one of the strengths we had in the Agency was thai our senior officers really Uled to protect Iheir mops and work with theirhai's why they got the loyalty.""

The numerous labor-intensive Agency operations in Vietnam called for ihe assignment of hundreds of people to the effort. The Clandestine Service* were ransacked for people who could be transfeired from their borne divisions lo Far East Division and seal out to Saigon. "The Whileelson recalls, especially of the later yean, "put down inuota of the people wc had lo have in thegents taken from (sound up In remote Vietnameseheshuttling ol personnelreat deal of llelms's attention. I'nable to sciuiinize each personnel folder personally, he made certain senior posts were filled by the best people available.ety importanttoot of personale later no other way to do it. Wc could do all we could here in Washington to keep the President informed keep the Cabinet informed, do all those chores we needed to do.ould see no way that we couldaximum contribution on the ground unless wc sent the very best people we had oul (here. And that's what we did.""

arvef iniriv^ew. isi. "Halpcro interview.ApnlNelson interview.J. 'Helmi inc_-uiew. la.

n liis desire lo select people who could beslarticular mission, he found il expedient to make some pretty daring ot unorthodox choices. Helms cites the selection of Thomas Polgar as Chief of Stalion in -Saigon as one such instance. It was essential that lhe CIA Chief of Stalion work closely and harmoniously with ihc US Ambassador. Ellsworth Bunker, an elegant, reserved, distinguished gentleman who made firm judgments and slated them wiih quiet incislvencss Polgarrusque, aggressive mart who sometimes rubbed people the wrong way. Helms fell confident thatompetence would overcome the adverse impression Bunker mighl initially mindful nf ihe fact that live minute Bunker saw Polgar he was going lo thinkadrick on him. That Ihis was not the kind of fellow he'd gel alongelms has very well that regardless of what his initialwas. that Bunkei would come to value Polgar very highly indeed,Polgar was just the kind of fellow who could keep one foot in the intelligence camp and the other fool in son of the general iuielligencc-diplomatic camp and keep the whole Ihing going.""

Because the Chief of Station's post in Saigon wastrong and sustained adverse reaction by ihc ambassador would have seriously damaged both the Agency's reputation and its ability to perform itsMoreover, il would probably have come to ihc attention of the While House and cast doubt on ihe Agency'* commitment to the preeminent task of the day. But confident lhat he perceived Polgar's abilities accurately. Helms could risk ihe appointment. It lurned out lhat Helms was right. Polgar went to Saigon, and as Helms had predicted. Bunker soon came to value him highly. "When you sent me outidn't know what in the world you had inunker told Helms later, adding with quiet conciseness.ame loreat respeci for that fellow.""

Helms's selections did not always turn out favorably. The judgments involved in placing individuals in sensilivc, highly responsiblealways tricky and subject io humanespecially difficult inoperations, where instincts are requited thai are neither definable nor measurable. An officer who serves as long as Helms had in onebefore becoming its directorody of experience about men and jobs that he tendsely on.CIanyaskedhoose between two persons, one of whom he has known io carry out sensitive rcsponsihiliiies successfully in the past and the other whom he knows less about, he will be strongly compelledelect the former. Occasionally, this choice willoor one, possibly because (hehas changed over the years, possibly because his success inposts rested on qualities other than those required for live job ai hand.

"Ibid, "ibid

/fVfjfi.v't Managrmtni Style;


In ihe eyes ol several olubordinates he developed aIn latct years to make personnel decisions in the mannerOneserved in the Far liast

Division, speaks ofnclination to be 'too easy on the oldcites an instance Incicran case oflicer became involved inescapade lhaliplomatic incident in Saigon. TheStation and the lop echelon of the Division fell that the officer shouldfrotn the Agency, hut Helms decided against it andwithinlhat the Director "probably

had the practical concern that he always had about firinghey would go to then conclusion, hey tsc if you add it all up. he did the right

Another subordinate, Halpern. who served as baecotive Assistant to DDPs Karamcssines and Fit/Cletald. contends thai front the point of view of "the troops" Helms was no different from other senior officers wholo believe what the troops werealpern suggests rhat. seen from below. Helms and these senior colleaguesremendous num-bei of errors about people" because ihey "relied for Ihcirasically on their cronies.""

In recent years severalincludinguccessor. James Schlesinger--have charged that CIA inndas dominated by an "old boysroup of clonics who first came together in the Office of Strategic Services lhat there shouldore of truth to these suggestions is hardly surprising. In ihc years afier the Agency's creation7 il was inevitable thai the CIA's leadership should frequently tuin to those most experienced in intelligence mailers, the veterans of Ihe OSS. Helms came from this group, and although as. Dlrccr i' he naturally looked to his colleagues witb proven experience and rnctllc for assistance, not all of them snscccdcd in the work he assigned them.

Foreign Intelligence Operation* in Vietnam

lhe demand* ot Agency co*en action ptogtams tn Vietnam and ihe constant need lo supply personnel and resources strained Helms'spreference for espionage and Intelligence collection Moreover, the pressure for belter, more productive intelligence assets was inccstani. Johnson, according to Helms, was "demandinghal was hard to imagine. Itay proposition with

Nor did ibc pressure lei up wiih the change of administrationNixon would lay. 'Look, don't talk to mc about this and that and the other thing, there is only one problem these days in the United States and that's'" Neither President made specific demands about where to place agents or what techniques to employ. What Ihey wanted wasinformation.hink it would be fair to say thai neither Johnson nor Nixonicture in their mind of what espionage or Fl operations ot anything wereean, except what Ihcy had read inelms relates. "Therefore, they were not ever scry specific about that aspect, they wanted to know thend therefore what espionage contributed to those results, line Rut they didn't even realize the extent to which we had to fan people out through (he countryside und base bases in these outlying provincial districts and so forth" in order to accumulateat ion.'"

Moreover, the information the Presidents warned was hard to get.

They wanted to know what the Communist leaders were up lo in Vietnam; what then long-range strategic plans were: and whatoth political

and military, were being readied to carry out those plans But to penetrate the high councilsommunist apparatus when one lacks an in-country base is no easy task. Results were skimpy, and frustration levels in both the White House and the DCI's office were high. Years lulci Caiver would recall his own efforts along these lines:

My preoccupation during the period, aside from gcUint llie pmnei pe.y> a> signed in the Vietnam Simon wa* ia try and see if wc coufcSa'l get sorne infceinaiion about what was going oa ia rsorrhean, nut was ablank, and thM isreat deal of my Vseiaariieseut ways to do thij


Helms remembers the intensity of this problem at the bullwhip out all the time on the FE Division, how it was lo come up wilh new ways to try and see if we couldn't find out what the enemy was upn spate of these efforts, the results remained meager "Iiery perplexing problem, which we never reallyarver concedes "

n* IM} "Helnu interview.pnl'Oiivr- .nieixw1

"Helms inierview. ll> "Carver1

Eyes Only" memorandumColby. Helms rrvrjlcJ his pen: up frustration os-cr (he Vieirum problem Until CIA focused onthe DCI stressed, "wc are going to be obliged lo cceitinue these bona lory effusions.-

1 simply have come to ilie pointeel that the America" effort in 'pucificaiiou' and 'nation building" has become in preoccupied wilh orjuni raiioa. theory, and guidelines that ihe ban brains, certainly at the WadMajioa level, arc aot briar, dewed ro the precise lash of how Ibc game is to brfter all. focebal! games are won by teaans whothe mrcssaracs. rather than Use ihcory. ol making louctsdowni. Ifemorandum tills you with irritation, il is no) inlended so to. Tha lime is lute We know whai out goal is Let's devote our graynd practicing some plays which will work in gelling the job done This should be the year lor players, not for cheerleaders."

Such messages bad little effect, but from time to time there were minor breakibroughs. One occurred when tbe OXCART high-speedaircraft brought hack Ihe first quality photographs of North Vietnam, an occasion thai produced for Helmseeling uf


rce. ana direct high-level penetrations were never achieved. As Colby remarks. "We all wished we had better informationusteverimple way of achieving it. In other weeds, it wasryueful about the Agency's lack of success in this respect, Helms Inter observed,as willing to do almost anything to get. In oihcr words, wc turned the box uut on all the tucks that we could think of to do this, butook bock oo il, ir was no greatard nut to crack and we didn't crackhink we may havelight bruise job on one side of the nut. but lhat was about all.""

Given the almost obsessive urgency first of Johnson and then of Nixon, Helms might have been expected to castigate his subordinates daily about (heir lack of results. In fact, he did not Although he declared in no uncertain terms the need fur better intelligence, Use DCI did not berate his

ciMiadarri furaraaary IW.

'HeIX April IW 1

IH Apnl IW. Helmi lnirr.lnw.pril

officers when Ihey were unable to achieve il. Nelson, chiel of Farremembers that "it was very clear that Dick felt we ought toaccess to live high levels in Hanoi than weStill, hecomposurewas working on the

Vietnam desk at Use time, saysl

He did gently prod us. even not so gently sometimes, to get moreHe wanted us to keep thai in tinndery high priorityon't think he would try to distract us or change our priorities away from the CA sort of thing, ot pacification and so on. bul be didn't want us to get soin pacification that wc didn't make our best shot on intelligence."

immcnls poinl up another enduring problem indifficulty of balancing foreign intelligence and coven action.

Covert Action in Vietnam

The White House's demand for high-level peneiration ofcommand, coupled with Helms* career-long preference foroperations, made intelligence gathering paramount. Butcommilments to Ihe enormous pacification and other covenprograms, with (heir omnivorous appetite for people andnol bethe strain on the DCI was evident. He

describes his "gut feeling" that Helms "looked upon (he Vietnam thinguge and almosl unmanageable burden thai had been dumped on him. and it was something that he feltuge distraction from the main task of coven operations, which he viewed asonetheless, "being the son of consummate, bureaucratic politician that he was, he. loyally tried to do his best in fulfilling the President's, the government'sI think he found it terriblyelson expresses similar thoughts.hink he had problems with the Vietnam program anduppose, he had some problems with Bill Colby's somewhatapproach to that wholeul Helms contradicts these descriptions of his attitude toward CA in Vietnam:

I did nut have any feeling thai ihc CA pan of Vietnam and Laos wastoas very much in favor of Ihe way we were going about Ihe wars for Hie Vietnamese side of things, the ftustration there was this North Vietnamese aspect, the fact that we really couldn't seem to tcally do anything to shake those fellows. Il wasn'tidn't like what wc

"Kelson inietvicn. JONelson interview.S.

iManagement Strie:

Indmhina and Operations

wens tiying ot didn't wim lo try newther thingsas simply lhal we werra'l femur aarywheir withad my heart la more hieally lo do something etrectivc in iheeld Ihan in any other Hung during my entire lime in Ihe Agency We were al war. wc had somctbinf! thai wr were trying to accoriapllshsmnrry.ell thai we should throw nwc could posubly ihiow in. whethci ilgood. had. or in-

Ii was this distinction, ihe waiiime use of coven action us opposedeacetime uses, that made the heavy butden of (he CA programs in Vietnam more acceptable to Helms.

One organizational innovation that made the burden more tolerablethe position ol" Special Assistant for Vietnam Affairsccupied first by Peer DeSilva and later by Carver. DCI William Raborn had created the post, and initially Melius, who dislruslcd organizational gimmicks, was not enthusiastic Bul he came lo recognize thead in crn-for him ihe multitudinous and disparate demands posed by Vietnam, especially in controlling the massive flow of cables, dispatches, and inemoranda. Under Carver, the postds stalf burgeoned.

While Helms found the Carver operation immensely supportivein every respect, thisot cniirely shared within theDivision and the lop command of the Directorate of Plans. Noenjoyi the interventiontaff officer between htm and hisIn (his instance, Carver's energy and peisonal style may haveanother clement of resistance. "Carver wasast movingso adept in filling all the available space thai sometimesothers very much out of joint,"Halpcm had

M<ijpcm nau much ihe same reaction.horn in the sade. not all the time, bul lots of thearver was always "pushing, pushing, pushing for mote and more information, to control almost everything about Vietnam up in that one little spot" Eventually. Halpcm concluded, even Karamessine* came to resent SAVA's asseniveness "From Tom's point of view, heietnam desk, youig Vietnam desk,ig Vietnam station, and he didn't need someone else to try and run it for him,

Still, Halpcm recognizes that the arrangement had its advantages, particularly in dealing wiih people and offices outside CIA. Agency friends on Capitol Hill, he notes, found the arrangement especially congenial."

judgment is equally balanced.tiuld sec thar lhe

kind ol job Ik wan performing for lhe Director was. extremelyhe SAVA position enabled ibe DCI lo:

uick reaction from any clement ot the Agencyhereat underorganizational procedureswould be very difficult to get the kind of reaction lhat he wanted to have, or had to have to deal wiih the question* from the -Secretary of Defense, or then this very complex and Involvedeorge was exuemely useful toair oiirt for the rest of us."

Helms fully recognized lhe friction created by this organizational arrange-iiveni aivd its zealous occupant. Even so. he fell that the benefits he derived froman ability to stay on top of an unwieldy, sprawling problem more than compensated for the difficulties:

Whetay not have been entirely enthusiastic about ihe selling up ol thn OeSitvs unit al Hieasealized that ii was going io befor mc as Dlrcctot of Central Intelligence to cairy out all ihe responsibilities of thai office and still spenday on Vietnam, which is what President Johnson wanted everybody to do. So il teemed only sensible to maintain the outfitxpand it and make the bead of itfor the DO* brief On Vietnam, in an elfurt lo help him. not lo cut across DDI. or DDP. or anybody else in ihc Agency, but to help put thewhich was Rowing oul In great quantities into manageable form, to write papers for mc of presentationsad to make on an hour'sand things of this kind.

Nor docs he. in retrospect, have any doubts about his selection of Carver to run the office.ust say lhal Carver did an absolutely superb job in this as Special Assistant for Vietnamese Affairs. He worked long hours, lie was bright, he was. IT io the extent that he may havesome people in the Agency, he still seemedci along reasonably well and gel the information he ivceded."

Covcrl Actionos

In the opinion of many officers in the CIA Clandestine Services the paramilitary progiams that lhe Agency operated in Laosere the metsi successful ever mourned. Small in numbers of personnel and even smaller in relative dollar costs, the CIA Laos opcraiions shone inlo lhe ponderous operations of the US military1 forces in covert action program thai Helms approved of wholeheartedly:

Htlmt's Managementperation*

as very much in favor of ihc way we were going about ihe wax inhink ihe Agency had really an extraordinaryf you look ai il in any objective terms.""

The OCT* support for lhe lao* program was highly viwble to ihc Far Bail Ihvittooo*irce of atMUance. Ai Nelson. Colby'* *ucce**or as chief of ihc division, remember*:

lie wa* lertlMy iMcresicd in ihe Lao.-un paiuculatly ihe Mco gucmlla acnvMy. and hereat deal of larac on thai,*eemrd u> me loibvcr of genuine laacrrst lo him. lieanted lo supportertainly had ihe impression that he fell lhal this was Ihc way io go in an operation ol tin- soil and nm Hie massive Iniroducilon of US forces and whatnothink he toot particular pride in thai program You toutd Sri: ii wa* son of bit baby, you know, and be wa*ood (Nag here aad be wat notomparatively sneaking, lo what ibe government wai spending in Vietnam, you know, ihc whole damn program was

Agency involvement in Laos predated Hclms's lenuie as PCI by several years. Shortly after the signing of2 Genevahich pledged bothnd West ml io interveneos wiih thcit own forces, ihc Natumal Sccuniy Council assigned CIA responsibility for ihc training of Laotian tribal mililaryy thehese CIA-backed hill tribes were providing active support for US militaty opera!toe* in South Wet nam by disrupting North Vietnamese Armyhe supply corridor through Laos lo South Vietnam, lying down Nonh Vietnamese Army uniis in Lao* seeking to keep the supply lines open, and collecting intelligence on North Vietnamese troops and materiel moving into South Vietnam through the Lao corridor.gency programs had trained and equippedrregulars, who were successfullyarassing attacks per month. To meet the challenges of thesehe North Vietnamese had been obliged to increarse their farcesiM.06IA, in contrast, hud ap-piosiiniitcly| [staff and contract personnel in-country."

By ihc, however. Helms concluded thai the Laos show had become loo large, expensive, and controversial toovenWhen friendly Senators like Russell Long offcied similat

Duiumi iitlVICe.

"elms began to look for ways to put Hie burden down. As Sirathemwm %umminKli fo


"SVlitut interview,N'SAM Ihietrive- ofune IW

8 DDP mcmoiirxlumureau of it* Bud-el re. lew

the Director's office. He sensed something unusual was in the offing. Helms "called mc in and he closed the door andant to talk to youant to talk lo you veryhe DCI "normallyan thai looks you right in the eye; you feel the full weight of whatever it Is that he is tiying to tell you. This lime he opened the discussion by saying. Td like toittlend he turned his chair and he looked out his office windows, out over thelearly troubled by the unwanted burden Laos had become, the Direcior. more to himself ihan to Straihern,cries of broad questions: "Where are we going in Laos? What should wc hend with lhat, he and Strathern "began to philosophize in terms of the Agency'sjust counterinsurgency bul whai hadiotracted involvement at great expense. Was the Agency really, you know, established lo tun Uiis kind of logistic problem" Knormous problems of simply providing the weaponry, the ammunition, and calling in airsirikes. And here we were involved in what amountedull-fledgedhe contrast with llelms's standard way of conducting businesseep impression on Southern. Normally, he relates, one went into the Director's office: one said what needed lo be said, one received instructions; and one left. There was little wasted effort orconversation. Bul this time was different:

He clearly was terribly pensive, and he was lembly concerned about the role of the Agency, continuing tn gel black marks fur its insolventsnI. nnd the fact that it was becoming public. Allhink, certainly bothered him. and he knew that the Agency was going to get hun unless ii got out."

The outcome of this unusual discussion was lhat Strathern leftinstructions to find ways and means to separate the Agency fromparamilitary program and to turn us responsibilities over toJohn Vessey.set to work overseeing the Agency's

phascout. "anday to gracefully extract ourselves withoutpulling the carpet out from under our Laoogether. Strathern and Vessey workedmooth transition. "Wc slowly built our position to the point where, without loss of momentum, we could phase in Jack Vcssey's organization and phase ouiselves oul of major weapons piocure-mcnt and alln Sirathcrn's view, Hclms's decision to terminate the Agency's program was both timely and prudent. "Wc got ourselves oul of the wargnod| time. And it was Hclms's sensitivities that moved us in thai direction. It wasn't that wc went right up till the final day and then were blown righl oul of


Meeting High-Uvcl Priorities

livery senior Agency officer during Hclms's tenure as Director wa> keenly aware of Helms't sensitivity to the needs and concern*unc cle-menu of the go* cmhose good opinion was rnosi vital lo CIA. Al times he seemed capable ofesire for intelligence informationnalysis on live part of the White House or the Congress almost before those entities themselves felt the need. He was equally keen in scenting dangers or threats to the well-being of the Agency

It was Hclms's relationship with Congress and the several Congressional committees that most compelled Siralhem's admiration:ould say that Hclms's style, his ability to be sensitive to the direction and ihe will and the spsrii [of Congress) waselms dearly knew his Congress, and he knew ihe people lhal were involved', he knew the pen-pic in the oversight committee; and his sensitivity was finely honed in all that regard Strathern watched Helms put that sensitivity to good use. not only in selecting the substance nf briefing materials for specific com-miliees and even specific Congressmen, bul also in selling ihe style of thine presentations. One ineinoruble incident involved the briefingenior Southern Senator whom Helms regarded as friendly but not bright Sliathcmirst tryriefing paper llclms sent it back with an admonition. "No, no, no, this is far tooaul thise as simple as you can makeiraihein dumbed it downoint where he would have been ashamedive it to anyone.

I lud ihe Irelingas insulting someone's inielligence,ent it hack up. thinking, well eettainly this is probably going to be hounccdil has simply gone too far the other way. ll was sent back to melearly dsdn't really mndcruaod what was needed Theot were, sun with sonThaiat. the cat itnd if you can capture thai in the briefing, then you've gotent hack and reduced this briefing lo an elementary levelas sure would never be accepted, and lo and behold, that was eiactly what Mr Helmt wantedpupoae **

Simplicity and the shearing away of unnecessary detail and clutterardinal principle for Helms. Strathern came to reaJive that for Helms there were times when too much precision and detail were counterproductive Gelling across ihe essence of the matter in easily grasped terms was theBut because the heart of the prublem was presented with clarity, his listeners had no feeling lhal ihe truth was being masked, and. as Strathern says, "thai particular ability of Dick Helms never underrmned his credibility "

"fairf "Had

Reinforcing ihul credibility was an abilityerceive when greatisinn was required and then io insist upon il.

[While Helms rccognt/cd thai absolute precision "was" not always essential. "It was essential to be precise when you had to be precise. He was unforgiving for inaccuracy in thats opposedhc penon who always mustrecise bottom-line figure downhirty-five cents. Thaiecome esseniialnosi of his briefings, but when it was important, he expected it to beelms did noteneration of officers, Sirathem concludes, whowell, if youange figure of plus or minus five, you're allou had towhat lhe right figure was and (hen you hud to fit it to ihc purpose and make sure there was no possibility of its beinghison absolute accuracy, combined wiih an ability to prune away the nonessentials so tba! the core could be perceived, established foreputation for integrity within the halls of Congress thai few oilier Directors approached.

The personaliiies of Nixon and Kissinger severely challenged lletnis's ability to respond sensitively tu the needs of the While House.


Peihupv nowhere wasalenncss to threats lo Ihc Agency's well-being better illustrated than in an episode known alternatively as lhe Chuyeo affair or the Green BeretS Army Special Kmtsunit engaged in running South Vietnamese agents discovered thai the North Vietnamese bad doubled one of itsan named Chuyen. After brief discussion with officers al the CIA base in Nha Tung, the Green Berets executed the agent, apparently by shoving turn out of anover the South Chinaaction later referred lo as "termination wiih extreme prejudice."

"Halpcrn interview. II April

Hy the summerf ihe execution hail leaked to the (IS press, which had by then became critical ol US involvement in Vietnam Almosttorm ol criticism broke. Fortunately (or Helms. CIA's participation in the nflair had been minimal. Green Beret officers later stated that in their discussions with Ihe CIA base at Nha Tmng they had received an indirect suggestion that termination of the agent waspossibly with "extremea phrase, by the way. not in CIAhey also noted that Ihey had asked directly lor advice about the execution before proceeding; when no immediate response from CIA was forthcoming, they took silence as assent. CIA base officers, subsequent investigations disclosed, probably did agree that lamination of Ihr agent's services was indicated, bul they resolutely maintained thai execution had not been intended. As for their failure to respond to the Green Beretfur advice, the Station Chief in Saigon had replied to the query and advised against execution Owingureaucratic snarl, however, themessage reached him belatedly, and his reply nrnved huuis after the agent had been killed.

Helms acted quickly alter the news broke, acquiring accuratewith which to dispel charges that CIA was responsible and Ihcnthe While House and the Congress precisely whai had occurred. Nelson remembers that Helms was "awfully goosey abouthe DCIhimself "in every minute of it. He followed that one scry closely.ecollect, he had all kinds of meetings in his office, all kinds ofon the field, to come up exactly with who said what lo whom and what harjrxned. And Ihe] helped to draft and reviewed everything that went down to the White House or the Pentagon on that

llalpein. from his post as execulive assistant for DDI' Karamessines. watched as the Far East Division responded to the Director's demands. "Dick's role in that basically was to try to keep Nixon and Kissinger happy with information. Wc poured stuff out lo both of them by theo detail was too small. At one point, llalnem personallyable over to the White House and sat there while White House communicaiors sent it out to Nixon, vacationing in California. "Messages were coming in. people were sent oul to Vieinam to interview all of our officers and what have you And it was almosty Lai massacre kind of investigation, as to just what the rote of CIA was in this, and the specific officersalpcrn emphasizes that the purpose of this hectic activity was precisely focused: "Dick was interested in this basically because of fits] politicaland the flak he would take from the White Honse" and Capitol HilL "Dick was very, very concerned that we clear our skins on this one. thai wc were nol the people who instigated this 'lermiualion wiih extreme

"Nelson interview.ikilpcm interview,pril

CIA's: skirts were clearedthe Green Beret case, thanks in pari to Helms'* prompt and effective action Bui (his was not the end of n. Carver recall* Once he became convinced that no CIA officer had acted wrongly during the cpisotle, the DCI "was determined nol lo hang anybody, just'I vV.^rtn'gioi;iynd hereat deal of obloquy because he wa* tryinge fair,wiih hi* own troops Itery difficult period

Carver's winds could just as easily have been applied io ihe whole period of American Involvement in Indochina, Jusi as Ihe war challenged Amencan wisdom, power, and resolve, so did il test lhe Agency's abilitydaptovel situations, sorne of which had little relalionshiphepurposes for which ihe organization had been created- Thai the Agency's record in rising to Ibis challenge is somcwhal mixed is hardly sutpiising Thai it could have performed far worse is indisputable Inthis challenge. Helms set an example of grace under pressure


0 Chilean Presidential Election

Robert M. Hathaway

Man. ol Ihe troubles lhal plagued Richard Helmshe years im mediately after he reiired at Director ol Ceniral Intelligence stemmed from CIA'* involvement in Chile0ense Helms Ml victim Io an c> post facto judgment, for the political climate0 was far different flora that of even tout or five year* later.ichard Nison presided over anit alt on thai jealously guarded its foreign policy pierogalivcs and brooked little interference by Congress. Over theew years, however. Watergate undermined the authority of Ihe pirstuencs. Vietnam shredded the consensus that had supported theforeign policyeneration, impending impeachment drove Nison ftom the While House, and new inteipiciations of senior officials'to ihe President and the Congress came to prevail Indeed. Congress asserted an initiative and authority in American foreign policy thai il had not cicrcised since before World War II. Ultimately. Richard Helms tell victim to the changed slandards dividing these two eras, having perfoimcd according to the policies and practices of the cailier period, bul judged by those of the laitcr. Helms's problems3 reflect the ambiguities generated by this' transformation of American political am-

0 Hectlon; "Spoiling Operations"

For almost four decades before0 presidential election. Chile had been notably devoted to civilian democratic rule and free from the periodic coups that dotted its neighbors'heigorous multi-party systemonstitution thatrespect from all sectors of society. Since hi* electionhilean President Eduardo Frei Montalva had worked hard lo reinforce this

'prom is ih id ifasoiiieoaly inrra"nenanooa. to ui drmmai^ iiajllmh

allegiance lo constitutionalumerous measures designed lo bencru lhe poorest classes. Hot lis years Frei's government bad been the showpiece of the Alliance for Progress, and in Ihc Alliance years tbe United Slates had spent more aid money per capita in Chile lhan anywhere else in lhe hemisphere Nevertheless, all was not well in Chile. Ptci'sto satisfy fully the expectations he had raisedew and potentially disruptive polarization into Chileans his moderate Christian Democratic Patiy suffered defections from both its kit and right wings. It was tbe inien.silied radicalism accompanying these development* lhal first nttrueied Washington's attention to0 presidential

The Nixon administration's decisionovert CIA role in0 campaign continued Ihe practice of the preceding Kennedy aod lohnsonhich forecade had directedAgency actions in Chilean electoral politics. During4 presidential contest, for example, CIA had channeledillion mio ihe coffer* of ihe eventual victor. Christian Democratear later the Santiago Station, working closely wiih the American Ambassador, used coven funds lo help defeat as many aseftist candidates who might otherwise have won congressional scats.IA operative* spent several hundred thousand dollars opposing congressional candidates allied with Dr Salvador Allende Gossens. an avowed Matxist and founding member of the Chilean Socialist Pany. In addition to funding poiilicalsecretly, the Agency had carried out extensive propaganda activities and subsidized anti-leftist newspapers and radio commentators.'

0 presidential election developedhree cornered conte*t. Representing the right as candidate of the National Partyyear-old Jorge Alessandn Rodriguez, who had been an incorruptible and relatively popular Presidentince under the Chilean constitution Presideni Frei could not seek reelection, the Christian Democrats had nominated Kadomiro Tomic Romero from the left wing of the party. Allende wa* the candidateoalition of Marxist and other leflwing parties. Of the three contenders, lhe United States clearly prcfetted the election of either Tomic or Alcssandri, since Allende'* promise* of sweeping agricultural and industrial nalinitialization andrelations withountries appeared contrary to American poiilical. economic, and ideological interest*.

On several occasions in Ihc previousonths, most notably inommittee meeting of ISgency officers warned lhe new Nixon administration that preparation* would have io begin soon if the

Sckmtyperaiioa* sioi lespeci to

latelligeaea Aiiivrtkei Khuriti cimmiuccI. rfairwrvTona. Isi *tm .

$ (hemnlicr eileil as t'tiurvli cnrnmitlee. CW'i.

United Slates hoped toignificant elande.tine role in0 Chileanelms warned Henry Kitiingcr. (he President's

Assistant (or Naiional Sccunty Affair*ommittee chairman, that CIA would need an early start to repeal its successes of IheChilean elections Kissinger deferred the question, and the record clearly indicates lhal neither Nnon nor Kissinger appreciated the urgency of ihe situation Recalling in later years ihe administration's failure to acl on ihcse warn ings. Helms repeatedly emphasized the seriousness of this mistake:

There was no question about it. If one is gomj in get mto covert pohiical action, particularly involved with elections in anythingating Ihe democratic process, one's got to be in there very early because it takes lime tnhe plumbing, to get iheo get the conduits set up. and all of ihcsscoucrafe lo affect the elector*'

In the months followingommittee's IS April meeiing. Ihe Agencyow-level covert action campaign designed iothe Chilean Left. Although the Santiago [embassy and CIA Stationoint proposal (or anti Allendc electoral activity in Decembersenior administraimo official* did nol focus on the problem until ist that lime theommittee, having hcunl DCI Helms warn of Allcnde's growing strength, authorizedo be used for "spoilinggainst the socialist leader and his Popular Unity piuty, primarily in the form oft the State Department'showever, theommittee specifically prohibited support for any particular candidate Three month* later, onhe same body allocated an0 for CIA anti Allende opcraiions.'

Under this authonzalion Agency officers organized an intensive anli-Allende propaganda campaign in the five month* beforeeptember bolloiing CIA assets provided political commentary and news articles for radio and press placement and distributed moreillion posters, leaflets, handbills, newsletters, and books. Sign-painting team* covered the walls of Santiago with anti-Allende slogans Kightwing women's and

"Chare* rim urr. <W*S Caafittv Seaaat Selectperation! wiih KrBpeei io Iidellipenre Aciivirie* (ChwrliKepari AtU ged AsmhPIMi tnwfotng Foreign /auJen. Millhereafter tiled ai Cniw.tiAltrirJ AsunsnmtionJ ComoMtar was Una rha Ewcaiii*Mcnin hy ftobrn. ht Hvhaaay. tape (madiaf. "Hiliiaomi DC.ciMd1

'Coablithed by Nitional SecuMj DcfcRM Meimnntum (NSDMiCommiite* replacedmnroiiir. a* (ho executive(wd> fen covertthe PnwdnM'i Annum rot Su-xia) Security AITiio. iheol IStliwii. tms Uadnr Sreieury ot Suae tor PoMmleal Utt

Stall, aad ahc Dd.

'Oniich comminer. Corert Atiiom.

"civic action" groups received subsidies to spread the message thai athe lefl would bring irreparable harm to Chilean democracy.propaganda campaign equaled an Allende victoryand Stalinist repression. Religion and family life wete said toPolitical action, including black propaganda, was used lo trythe Allende coalition. Unlike its wort in4 elections,Agency refrained fromgrass roots organiz-

ing, and provided no direct funding lof any CIlBoinaie.'

CIA's actions remained unknown lo ihc American businesswhich meanwhile had become increasingly alarmed by ihea kftist victory in Latin America In

| contacted Helmsrge direct financial assistance lo the Alessandri campaign. Repot ling to Kissinger on this conversation, the DCI expressedboui the impact such aad would have, given ihc "diffuse" character ofoliticalThe election remained "dicey and difficult toelms noied. The Agency would continueollow cvenis closely, "hul it is only lair io say thai we ateuandary a* lo what action i* wise "'

International Telephone and Telegraphne of tbe largest American multinational corporations wiih holdings In Chile, also moved to block an Allende triumph. On several o< cations in May and June, Johnormer DCIember of IIT'set with Helm*iscuss lhe Chilean situation. Helms told McCone that, while lheommittee was monitoring events in Chile, it had decided to avoid the massive commitment of resources made4 He did concede, however, thai the CIA wa* nototal hands off policy

Unsatisfied withcCone asked ihe DCI to send an Agency representative to talk with Harold Geneen. ITTs chiefofficer. Accordingly, William Oroe, head of DDP's Western Hemisphere (Will Division, conferred with Geneenashington hotel onuly Geneen asked about the Agency'* analysis of the electoraland offered to givesubstantial" fund io pass along to Alessandri. Although Broc tinned downoiler, repeating lheommittee's prohibition againstpecific candidate, hethe ITT president to provide this support directly.*

otally aloof altitude had hazards of its own. TheHelms wanted was for ITTcomplain to ihcir White

House fiiends that the Agency rclused to cooperate on Chile Although

ijaaasksti, Cmrtrt Actum,I aad lit. aum

TticluolCI. Mr moiiodum lot Ikary Ki winger. Id.

onfinl. -Senile. Committee on Foreignubcommittee on Multinational

Winjminl .Win /Veienl

at DCn coed aitTamd CAuVi.

; HnMtaadaaB,ktiww Itiliaul to Oar Cxen Actirxia rSe

IvWO.Vro. Preirfonut90

complying wiih the Idler nf their instructions. Agency olliccis in Santiago over ihe ncxi five ot six weeks met several times with ITT representatives to offer suggestions and supply names of Chileans who might help funnel NT's funds lo the Alcssandri campaign Guided by CIA advice. ITTpassed approximately VlMl.OOu lo the National Party. As an internal Agency memorandum noted, this action "was taken wiihoul reference to Ihe Depailmcni of State for obvious reasons.""

Otauly, the DI'i Office of Current Intelligence (OCI)ncmorandum on the eleciion. which indicated ihai Allendc and Alcssandri wcie neck and neck, wiih neither likely toajority ol the votes. Allendc could well end up as president At Ihe morning meeting theday Helms urged the Depuly Director for Plans. Thomas Karamessines. to "ensure that we are doing everything which canbe done" to prevent this. Assuring the DCI that he was following Ihe silualion closely, Karamessines explained that "ceilain actions arc already being undertaken lo deal with contingencies, which might presentfollowing the vote count.""

Onuly the intelligence communityew National Irstellirrencc Fanoute (NIE) entitled The Outlook foe Chile While lodging Alcssandri ihe current frnntrunner, this NIF. paralleled OCI's assessment lhat the election was loo close to call. The NIF. predicted lhal Allende could "takeong way down the Marxist-Socialist road during Ihe sis years of hisltimately creating,hilean versionoviet slyle Last Furopcan Communist stalellendc's rejection of the capitalist system wasnd he would move twickly toumber of American business interests in Chile. In foreign uf-fain, an Allendc presidency would create extremely dilficult" problems anderious challenge to US efforts at securing hemispheric cooperationide range ofn liming, however, the NIE held that Allende "would be likely to move cautiously in carrying out drastic changes int least initially, since important obstaclestoadical wider popular base ihan he currently had.

The NIE also judgedictory by either Alcssandri or Tomic would produce strains in relations between Washington and Santiago, since (he Chilean trend toward more independence of (lie United Stales was "too deeply sei to be easily reversedhe NIE concluded that, all told. "Chilean democracy is likely to survive over the next two or three years.""

The degree of concern expressed in this NIE may not have fully reflected Hclms's own misgivings over ihe prospects of an Allende presidency, although the DCI loyally stood by his analysis Yd reports of funds poured into the Socialist candidate's campaign by ihe Soviets and the

TShI rrnKUm oa tne Cnileaa PrciuSrsuM tJeciraa. IJ Hp riabertamt Maws II aad0

(tool Havana alone. by Agencyihc spec letuppet regime manipulated (rotnoreover, at just Out momcni Moscow appealed micni on transforming the Cuban porl of Cicnlucgosase lot its nuclear submarineevelopment lhat accented the dangerussian presence in the Western Hcmtspheie.

As predicted, the election was very close. Huteptember the Chilean electorate handed Dr.mall plurality. Ihc3 perceni ofillion ballots cast, givingvote margin over his nearest rival. Alessandri. who was lhe choice9 petceni ol the electorate; Tomic came in thud8 percent of the vote. An alarmed Nixon White House turned angrily on ihc CIA for failing to prevrni Atlcnde't triumph. As Helms recalls it. the President and Kissinger "were obviously upset overictory, the) were looking around lor scapegoats, there wasn't any doubt about il. They dldn'l wantccept ihe responsibility themselves for not having gotten on with this thinglready suspicious of the Agency, the President saw the outcome of lhe Chilean election as one more indication of CIA bungling."

Agency officials disagreed In their view, the While House had risked this outcome from the start by not recognizing the danger that Alkndc's candidacy posed: Nixon and Kissinger were ihemselves at fault. Moreover, the Stale Department's resistanceore vigorous covert action program had fuither reduced the already slender chances of success. "The basicn Agency post mortem concluded:

that tesetvations. altnosi phiksseastuc in depth at tunes,he DcpaitrTKni of State from the outset and suffocated considerationslear-cut, all-out effort io prevent Allende'sranslated Into starkrealities, the issue was that of [the) Department of Stale beinglo coaskic topooeiing Jorgeo whaarver eitent neceuary to assure his election "

Since no candidate had received an absolute majority of the ballots ineptember canvass, the Chilean Congress would select the nextfrom the two individuals wiih the highest vole counts. The Congress had always chosen Ihe frontrunnet in similar pust instances, and neaity all observers predicted lhal when it met onctober ii would respectand confirm Allende

nd Track II

Now thoroughly aroused, the Nixon administration cast aboutways to block Allende's selection by the Chilean Congress.heommittee convened to consider possible

eopnutant. Own A. ip JO

Tklm*S luu* IW.

"foil monein on thr ChileanccUea,

0 Chll,


strategic* An Agency summary o( ihe meeting notes (hat "all concerned realized thnl previousould have to be drasticallyCI Helms teporied lhat ihe Congress would probably confirm Allendc and (hat. once the Marxist leader was in office, domestic opposition would rapidly collapse "While notpecific course of action, the Director further observedilitary tolpe (coup) against Allendc would have little chance of success unless undertakenccording to the minutes of this meeting, both Kissinger and Attorney General John Mitchell, one of Nixon's most misled advisers, concurred with this judgment'

A dispatch from the US defense attache in Santiago warned that the Chilean military was "selling oui" to Allendc. US Ambassador Edward Korry oneptember cabled that Washington should not expect the Chilean military l" move to bar Allendc's accession. Agencyational Sccunty Council staffer informed Kissinger, (he CIA had concluded that "military action it impossible; the military is incapable and unwilling to seize power. Wc have no capability to motivate ora coup ""

Taeed with these discouraging reports, theom mil tec met again ooeptember. After reviewing the available options, il directed Ambassador Korry and the Agency to augment then political and economic measures with propaganda activities focusing on the unhappythat would follow an Allendc takeover. It also approved afund0 tn swing congressional votes lo Alessandri These steps, designed to induce Allcndc's opponents io block his assumption of power by either political or military means, would later become known as Track L

On the following day,eptember. Helm* met with the President in the Ova) Office. Kissinger has recalled this conference;

onversation lasting less Ihaninute* Nixon told Helm* thai he wantedmayor effort bo see what could be done to proent Alfende'ito power. If there weir one chance mi ten ofd of Allende wc should try it if Helms needed SJ0 Bullion he would approve U. Aidto Chile should be cut. its economy should be soucrred until itelms should bypass Korry arid report directly to Ihe While

In those few minutes President Ntxon created Track II. the program thai later brought so much trouble and attention io Richard llclms and the CIA. Although Kissinger later tended to mini mi re the imponarvce of this

"Mtmoiandum. "Polic) Ooclsioai Reined to Our Coven Actioni in ihr0 Chilean Prendrniial.

"Mi*nmi! MeetiBg Miiuiei. II; Church committee.SO. llalWl in iHlainat

"Trail Iacrrtttoeir dtwfard id iMdwc Ahcade'ii anaanpraaai of prnx enhrr Manach

polaical ua mAAmy(Church commllW.A.)

Homu trars (Boilo* tmle

meeting and the President's directives. Nixon had certainly conveyed ioessage of clear and present danger. Testifying several years laterongressional committee, the DCI recalled: "The President came down very hard lhat he wanted something done, and he didn't much care how and that he was prepared to make moneyhisretty all-inclusiveclms's handwritten notes from this meeting attest to Ihc urgency of his instructions:

One inhance perhaps, but save Chile

worth spending

not concerned risks invoked

not involvement of Embassy

available, more if necessary

full-timemen we have

game plan

make the economy SCteaniours for plan of action"*'

The next morning,eptember, the DCI met with his principalto convey the President's instructions. The mood was somber. As Helms later related. "Therene of us who thought we had any chance whatever" of preventing Allende's confirmation. The possibility of "bringing off something like this seemed to me at that time to be just as remote as anything couldut such pessimism went largelyOne DDP officer, David Phillips, remembers Helmsemorandum to those working on the problem. "This is an assignment wc could never have takenhe DCI reportedly told his troops, "excepthink the Agency has developed Ihe professional ability to carry out whatever instructions arc givenor Phillips, the Director's memo, "in sonaconic Helms fashion, conveyed to me ai least the thought lhat he might not think very much of it. but be had been given his marching orders and he was going to carry them out."'1

Although Helms believed from the beginning thatove by the Chilean mililary could effect the President's insiructions. it is not clear whether Nixon and Kissinger also held this view at the outset. "All of us werene CIA participant has observed, "lhat inhorl period of lime, no matter what other techniques wc might try. what wc were talking about, basically,ilitaryul tbe Chileanwith its long tradition of respect for constitutionalism, could nol be

"Church committee. Alleged Aiirunnarinrr Plait,.

"Heporr on CIA Ctvilcanone Aeiivlties. IK

"Richard Helim. inleiview by David FiuM (hereaftere-lmiy Froil); Chorch committee. Alleged AisaiMiaiton Plots,.

'DbvhI a.nterview byathaway, inpc, recording. WatDinfion.3 Ihe-nraler eiied as Phillips inico icw)

counted on tooup. Chile's leading mililary figure, (he Commander in Chief of the Army. Gen. Rene Schneider, was outspoken in hi*that the Chilean military should *iay out ofhe need for speed ciMtipl scaled mauer* further, since ihc Chilean Congress would meet inew president onciohci.dale only slightly moreonthie absence of readily available assets within Chile presented another obstacle "Wc really had to extemporize from ihe very beginning, and il was an almost impossible situation lo dealelms Inter

When he had tried to point out these difficulties to President N'ixon> September. HelmsThat wa* like talkingean, we were to go out and do ihee could, and lhal was all there was* Helm* could do little more than *tiflc any rms-iving* he may have possessed. The President was obviously determined to ihwati Allende's in-auguration. and the DCI's job was lo do whatever the While HouseHelm* has explained;

I believed the Agency Inervice agencyhink lhat II is there to liy to do what the I'tesidem wants to have dime and needs doing, ami thatone should give it the best shot thai onend if you weren't successful, all light, you failed, bineast you'd done theou could and it "r" have succeeded '

The Agency's efforts io prevent Allende's election thus proceeded along two separateI and Track II although similarities in methods and purposes sometimes obscured ihe distinction between the two Both tracks weie prepared to sanction all means,ilitary coup, necessatylock Allende's inauguration What came to he calledonsisted of Ihe covert political, economic, and propaganda activities theommittee approved oneptember und in laterhe Agency winked closely with the Slate Department onctivities.

nrrw or respecting inonst ituiional traditions Althoughfrom all knowledge of Track II. IIS Ambassador Kerry wasby theommittee toilitary coup, so long as Presideni Frei concurred. Track II. on ihc oihei hand, ruse Irom Nixon* sectei orders lo Helms oneptember. Making no allempt to wotk through Frei or to stay within tittle'* constitutional framework. Track II rapidly focusedilitary coup as its principal objective. 'Crack IIa severely restricted chain of command, with the CIA reporting directly io Kissinger's office in lhe While House. The State and Defense Department* and theommittee knew nothing al all of Track II. and Ambassador Korry in Santiago irccived no wont of it* cii*tence.

"Hdm. ifctrrs-ics. by fiosi.OT.


Faithfully carrying nut theishes. Helms kept the US Congress completely ignorant oi Track II. While ihe siiuaiinn is murkier with icspect to Track I, at most only the chairmen of ihc armed services and appropriations subcommittees that had jurisdiction os'Ct CIA could have had any inkling of this joint effort of CIA and the State Department. In the upper chamber. Senator Richard Russell jealously guarded access to CIA officials, and the DCI invariably sought his approval before briefing other Senators on sensitive matters.'" But in the autumnussell, gravely ill and only mOnlhs from death, could nol provide his customary guidance. There is. in fact, no evidence that anybody in the Scnaic was consulted or advised about Track I. On the House side there is also nothat, in the crucial weeks betweeneptember andctober, the Agency briefed eilher of the designated committee chairmen about Track I. In that era, of course, members of Congress did not expect or in most cases,be informed of CIA operational matters. For Helms and his predecessors i( would have been mosl exceptional- indeed,confer widely with legislators about coven Agency actions.

Afier settingpecial Track II task force at lleadquieptember, the Deputy Director for Plans cabled David Phillips..|

ead ii. Karamcssincs met with Phillips and Western Hemisphere Division Chief William Broe daily and frequently conferred

wiih Kissinger and other While House officials. Broe remcmhers that Helms himselfore aciive imercsi in Trackhan in any other operation Broe was familiar with. This no doubt reflected Kissinger'spressure on the DCI for up-lo-lhe-minuie information and results. In his usual fashion, however. Helms generally delegated day-to-dayresponsibilities to his subordinates. |

Agencyultiplicity ot lomis. ininar nope: of using0 made available by theommittee to buyin the Chilean Congress were quickly recognized as illusory, SO the Station turned to other methods. Agency-generated propaganda appeared throughout Latin America and in many of the major newspapers of Europe and Japan. Alleged parallels between the Communist takeover of Czechoslovakia8 and the current situation in Chile were widely|

them to pleadc


0 Chilian Presidential Eli. mm

European Christian Democratic movement wcie mobilized toto save Chile fiom Marxism.

Roping ihui financial chaos might push the-Chilean mililary intoAgency officers found Chile's fragile economy an inviiing larger. On IS September. Helms and Kararnessines met with Kissinger at the White House to consider what economic pressures could be brought to bear against Chile They apparentlyfferurn SIof corporate funds over to the CIA for the purpose of blocking Allende's confirmation Oneptember, Broe met with the head of ITT's Washington office to explote ways the multinational might tnllucnce thehe Chileaneek later. Helms, warning hisom nut ice colleagues that Allende's promises to impose Maoism on Chile must be taken seriously, helped lum back State Depatimcni efforts to tone down the economic warfare against Chile. That same day, under insiruc-lions from lheroe Journeyed to New York to lalkenior 1TT official. The CIA officerarge-wale program to createturmoil in Chileay of ptessunng the Christian Democrats to vote against Allende, or failing that, to weaken the new government'sAlthough Kararnessines telephoned McCone to request lhe former DCTs hacking for Broe's scheme, ITT showed little inleicst tn ihc Agency's proposal. Similarly, CIA's efforts to enlist Anaconda Copper. General Motors, and several other large American corporations within Chile failed, while attempts toun on Chilean bank* were equally unproductive Meanwhile, the impendingctober vote Crew steadily closer.

Inquiries, reflecting bothnd Track II efforts, intu possible military action al first proved no more fruitful hour false-flag operatives-officers posing as nationals ol couniries oilier than Chile or the Unitedarrived in the country and rapidly established contact with Chilean officers interested inoup. Agency personnel intimated toofficers that the Untied States was willing loilitaryhy all means short of oulright aimedpecial Headquarters arrangement with ihe Defense IX'panmcnt [

I Oneptember, however, the CIA Station

in Santiago reported: "Strong reasons lor thinking neither Ftei not Schneider will act. For that leuson any scenario in which eithet has to play

"dumb romni'tlrc. Cover AiUim. pp..

an active role now appears ulterlyhe need, an Agency post nioriem lalcr explained, was loe upollilcnl. constitutional' oriented inertia of the Chilean military.""

During these weeks many of the CIA's contacts were with officers close to Brig. Gen Roberto Viaux. who had been retired alter launching an unsuccessful coup against President Freihai American hopes could be pinned on such ahy Phillips years later as "asomething of the desperation Agency orTurcrs felt as thectober deadline rapidlyiaux initially askedizable airdrop of arms andgleyctober denied as impractical. The general did receive a|

token of American good faithIA promise: ot in lite insur-ancc. After frequent meetings with Agency operatives in late September and early October, Vtaux reported his readiness tooup on ihe night0 October. Al this point. Karamessines intervened io scotch theove hy Vuux at this time. Agency officers decided, would not command Ihe vupport necessary to succeed ll would be better to waitore propitious occasion.

It increasingly appeared that such an occasion might never arise. The problem, exasperated CIA officers agreed, was that President Frei wasor unwilling (or bolh)rovide the necessary leadership. The Agency's task, one report concluded, "was one of attemptingecast Frei.olitical personality,ule demanding decisiveness and 'machismo'egree that, thus (ar. hod eludedlter several contacts with Agency officcis, this report observed, the Chilean president remainedunderstanding, and frank as always, and. as always with him.happened.""

Onctober, with only two weeks to gn before the Chilean Congress reconvened. Karamessines reported to Alexander Haig. Kissinger's deputy, lhal prospectsoup looked dimmer than ever On IJ October. Ambassador Korry met first with Kissinger, then Nixon to warn against tryingulloup that was not likely io succeed. Theommittee received Ihe diplomat's views the following day. along with Karamessincs's assessment, as pan of Track I,oup climate did not exisl. Onctober theommiliee (still unaware u( the existenceecond track)alt lo mostctivities.

Recollections differ as lo what happened next. Onctober,sMntvpiivatcl) to Kissinger and Haig or Track IL ataarnifjaux bad no betterhance of bringinguccessful coup In his memoirs Kissingercn that he thenTrack II ter-mma-ecL and lhat as far as he and President Nixon were concerned, hk order

"Church comimun; AUtt'4 lucuiiiMfionUponCIA Chi kmForce Activities. IS Novrintw IvX) 'PhilllcnV

"Rcpon on CIA Outran Ifli* Fine* Activiiics. ISi>

ended all covert activities seeking to prevent Alienatelection.'* II this was Kitvnger'* intention.was not uorJcrstood by Karamessinc* or the CIA. Karamessinc* believed lhat Kissinger bad directed him only to discourage Viaui Irorn premature action. Onctober, instructing the Santiago Station lo rein in Vtaus. Ikadquartcr* added.

irm and continuing policy (hat Allende be overthrownoup * ontimic lo rrnrraicmum prcsiure lost-aid tins end ulilinnghere is great and coniiniiing inicreu in Ibe activities olChilean conspirators| and we wish them optimum pood

Immediately ihc pace of events in Chileiauxhis Agency contact that officers around Viaux planned loSchneider withm the next few days, before launching aAt the same time other Chilean officers with lies to Brig.Valcn/ucln, commander of the Santiago ganlson, askedfor tear gashree sub machinendHaving secured an Agency pledgea successfulibe Valcnzuela group attempted to kidnap Schneider, firstOctober and then again lhe next day Both iries failed. In the earlyofctober, with barely two days remaining before thean intermediary delivered the requested machine; unv andValenzucia associates. Agency officers were nut optimistic. Thelog noted lhat "lhe prospectoup succeeding or evenbeforeciobei now appears

But before the Valen/uela group could use its newly acquired weapons. Viuux's planers staged their own attempt to kidnap General Schneider Although their effon also failed, in Ihc altcmpl they fatally woundedubsequent investigationongressionalheaded by Senator Frank Church exonerated lhe Agency of any direct complicity in the general's death

Although ihe CIA continued io support coup ptotters up to Schneider's shooting, ike record indicates that the ClA had svatkstrawa active tapped of the group whuh earned out the actual kidnap aocntnt onhich tesahed in Schneider'i death rurtber. il does not appear lhal any of tbe equipment supplied by Use CIA to coup plotters in Chile was used in theThrrr it no evidencelan to till Schneider or ibat United Slate* eMail specifically anticipated that Schneider would be shot during Hie abduction."

"Ktotngcr. Wkti* Hew tarn,. "Cable,Chileract II, II

iiLi.-i. ti'lrs'ea AiuunaurWn ftMi, p 5

This conclusion is certainly warranted, although other evidence(hat i( is narrowlyhilean military court, for instance, laid determined thai the Viaux men present at the fatalctober abductionhad also taken pan in Ihe earlier CIA-supported Valcnzucla attempts onndctober. This tends to blur the distinction made between the two groups in the Church committee conclusion!

It would, nevertheless, be unfair to assign CIA. as an instrument of American policy, principal responsibility for Schneider's death, litismust properly rest on an administration that insisted oil sparing noto deny Allende theew years laler. us he coped with seemingly inexhaustible Church committee demands for Agencyan embittered CIA senior olYicer observed lhal il was Americanpolicy toward Chile lhat was under examination, nol CIA implementation of if "In an age of gun-boat diplomacy when the US Marines waded ashore ine protested, "critics may have deplored US policy, but ihey did notongressional investigation of the US Marine

Time having run oul. Agency personnel in Chile began closing down operations in the wake of the bungled abduction attempt Onctober. Helms tcvicwed the situation with his key subordinates They agreed, the task force log records, lhataximum cffon has been achieved and thai now only Chileans themselves canuccessful coup. The Chileans have been guidedointilitary solution is al least an option open to them."'*

late of emergency after General Schneider was shot. President Frei gave the military open-ended auihoiity to maintain orderrief moment. Headquarters hoped thai ihe dramaticctober attack was an opening moveoup attempt. Bui Ihe unexpected wounding of Schneider evidently inhibited further action. Onalvador Allendc receivedotes cast in the Chilean Congress. The next day Schneider died, and on the day after that President Frei and President-elect Allende stood side by side at ihe general 'l funeral.alvador Allende was sworn in as Chile's new president.

"'Special Mandate lmm ihe President oaIA rJiicfnig Paper. ISS;'urru. Mcmi<niitdur" fa ihe Review Sialf.6ilier. Memorandum tor ihe ReviewlnniiViChileract II.0

PntUeni Salvtnfo, Allende <surrrm>ded by pane bodyguard) IrtVea in crowd en route to million ptirode.

The Pull ol' Allende

CIA .lo monitor Chilean affairs alter Alicndc'sui'! hy *ome measures Hi inierest ir* cased Wuhm theemisphere Division. Rroeeparate branch dealing exclusively with Chilean mailers, in recognition ol the administration'sConcern. Budgetary figures ulso reflecl this augmented interest. In the months preceding Alicndc's accession to power, tho Agency had spentSWKtOOtlatidXIO on covert action in Chile. Over thethree years, it would cspend nearlyillion more, the larger part ot il before Richard Helms stepped down as DCI. These funds financedclandestine activities, including support for opposition politicalprnp.ig.inda operations, and coven backmit lor pin ate sectornnd the media."

This extensive involvement logically flowed from the assumptior-and comniitiiientv behind bothndemorandum that DOP KaraanessiDcs wrote after hisO meeting with Kissinger when the National Security Adviser directed the Agency to break off ties s-


Viaux. clearly demon si rale* this linkage Kararnessines records lhal Kisainger ended ihi* meeting by noting ilui ihc CIA "should continue keeping ihe pressure on every Allende weak spot in sight-lterh nl October, after f> November {sir: Kissinger probablyovember, inaugurationnd inlo the fulure until such lime as new marching orders areater, before the Church commillcc, Kararnessines expanded on this:

As (aras conserved Track II was really never ended VVhai we were Uld to do tn efteci was. well.ow President. So Track II.sought to prevent him from becoming President, was technically out. It was done. Hut what wc weic told to do was to continue our cffotl. Slay ulcrt. and to do whut wc could to contribute to ihc evcntuiil achievement of Hieand purposes of Track II. That being theon't think il is proper to tay that Track II was ended."

Kaiamcsstocs's explanation is misleading, since once Allende wasthere is no evidence thai US policy ot CIA action ever had his overthrow as an objective. National Security Decisionowever, gives some backgtound that helps explain the sense iu which Karaes evidently considered Truck II still alive. Adopted six days alter Allende's inauguration, this document sel forth official American policy toward Chile While the US Government would be publicly "correct but cool" toward the new regime in Santiago, behind theould seek "lo maximize pressures on the Allende government io prevent lisand limit ils ability to implement policies contrary to US and hemisphere inicresishe Agency's clandestine activiiics after ihcof the new Chilean leadership appear to have followed thisapproved at tbe highest levels of tbe government.

Tbe Agency's efforts to "maximize pressures" on lhe Allende government, however, did nut go so far as actively lo promote the coup in3 that tnpplcd President Allende. In this respect Karamcssines's ambiguous reference to continuing Track II is seriously misleading The Church committee, not known lor its tenderness toward the CIA, spent months searching for hard evidence of direct Americanin the events leading to Allende's overthrow and death hu!failed lo produce any. The record, the commillcc concluded, indicated that ClA maintainedareful disiinetion between supporting the oppositionn the one hand, and "funding private-sec tor groups trying io bringililary coup" on Ihc other"

"Tfennm Karamnutars.oa* Ceaoersatioa. IS0 TW<*Ahete4 AimttmmmimH "Catlr: Operant PueeUsr -FYChun* rorwnMler,Ariinn. p. Jl.

The Senatehowever, wciil on lo suggest lhal Ihethem mighl nol (ell (hecommittee hypothesised

ihai the Unitedby iu previous actions during Track II. iu existing general posture of opposition to Allende. aad the nature of iu contacts with the Chileanprobably'* promoted the idea among Chile's officer corps that Washington would not be unhappyoup occurred. Noting that CIA officials and American military attaches maintained contacts with the Chilean military during (he Allende years, osiensibly to collectthe committee wondered whether these contacts "strayed intothe Chilean military to move againsir whether (he Chilean military "took encouragement to act against the President from those contacts even- officials did not intend to providemerican officials in the years3 "may not always havein walking the thin line between monitoring indigenous coup plot-ling and actually stimulatingne of the committee's reports concluded, againegree of uncertainty rather thanirm

While these speculations remain unproved, theyertainThe committee's generalizations, however, do not attempt tobetween Helms's anions as DCI and those of his two successorsames Schlesinger and William Colby, ll is not easy to define with precision CIA's role in Chile under Richardince he retired as DCI eight months before Allende's government fell inoreover, the very drama of events in Chile3 has colored recollec-lioni oferiod when Helms was still responsible for the Agency.

Certain facts aboutclms yearsutter of record. Wc know, for inslance. lhat on0 the Deputy Director for Plans informed the DCI that Allendc had metumber of "hardline leftists" and "promised themeek bier, the Directora similar message in briefing the National Security Council on the new government in Chile. "Let us make no" Helms warned "Thisardline, militant cabinet. It reflects the determination of ihe Socialists to assert their more radical policy from thelthough Allende hadica for international understanding, he had thena foreign minister who was "so far to the left" that he had even alienated Moscow in the past. Predicting worsening relations between Santiago and Washington. Helms reported that Allendc had promised Latin American revolutionaries that Chile wouldenter of support foi their efforts to overthrow neighboring governments'"

"Morning .Vkwrtoj; Minutes,crmrsntlum. "Briefine hy Riehanl llet

t-maify, tne sannagu atatnju cmtivdieu cumrrcis wnnini-mimi

military. These contacts kept the Agency abreast of coup planning, but. as the Church committee report suggests, ihey probably also served toor incite plotting. For instance, (he Santiago Stationriendly Chilean officer information purporting to document alarming Cuban influence within the Chilean security apparatus, information that, in fact, the CIA had fabricaied-t

As fur CIA'* analytical tide, the Church committee later noted1 Special National Intelligence Estimate (SNIfc)2 NIE both used relatively restrained language in characteri/.ing Allende'* currentand future prospects. Observing lhal Chilean democracy continued to displayr mailablethe2 estimate was lelatisely sanguine about lhe chances for an "open and meaningful" presidential election al the end of Allende's termn foreignhe leftist leader hadcautious, indenerkdeatxpanding relation* with other Communis! countries more slowly lhan anticipated and offering only modest help to group* seeking lo export revolution lo Chile**The Church commit ice asked if this estimate's more mcderate tone could be *quared with the CIA's active program uf coven operations in Chilend whether decisionmakers had adequately considered ihc Intelligence analysts' Judgments in formulating American policy."

These queries go to the heart of two key questions. One concerns ihe attention that top policymakersdo notthe estimative views of ihe DCI and the intelligence community. The second, central to this chapter, concerns Helms'* quandary in trying lo carryXTs responsibility to be at Ihe same time tbe covert arm ol thecsideni .policy and the I'resldcni's dispassionatec**or of world dc-vetopntcnts Even though Helms chaired and signed ofl on the intelligence community'* NIE* ands clear that he believed lhal his first responsibility was to carry out theperational commands. As Helms later ex punned, the point was:

thai Ihe circled Presideni ol ibe L'nnedho b* the Constitution i* the inafceioreijn policy, decided thai ht wanted vomrlliinef we turnedundred SNIEs which said "Allendeovelyjust leave it lo lum and things willloom inhat would have made

arc. the Presideni has mid us to don Helms's view he had bul twoYou go with lhe Presideni or you gel oui of iheftet leaving office. Helms was subjected to Congressional investigation,and media scrutiny, and eventually legal proceedings arising from the Agency* actions in Chile during his time as DCI Uluituaely.udgearker in the Federal District Court sentenced Melms to two year* in Jail, lo be suspended0 fine after he bad pleaded nolo contendere to two misdetneanor counts of failmg to testify "fulry and completely" before Cceigrcss about CIA activity dunng the Alienee era. This judgment stemmed trom his appearance before lhe Senate Foreign

> Mm ht:


"Helms interview, isttillipiune i'm'

Relations Committeeollowing his nomination as Ambassador to Iran. Asked hy .Senator Stuart Symington. "Did you try in the Central Intelligence Agency to overthrow the Government inelms had responded with an unequivocal "No,he Senator then asked: "Did you have any money pasted to the opponents ofgain. "No.elms would later maintain that he had not wanted to mislead the Senate, bul that he had found himself confronted by diametrically opposed obligations: to respond candidly and completely lo the committee'sand to avoid divulging classified information to unauthorized pet-sons. Central to Hclms's perception of ihe choices before him was his conviction that lie was authorized to reveal Agency operations only to the four Congressional committees exercising intelligence oversight. Conscious as he testified before Ihe Foreign Relations Committee that Allendc wasosition lo exact retribution, Helms feared that candor might cause irreparable damage to important national interests. Faced with this dilemma, he did what many of his colleagues have since testified they would have done, he deliberately narrowed his answers sn severely us lo render them meaningless and misleading.

ongress relieved Hclms's successors ot the dileituna that Ire had confronted the year before. Reacting to revelations and allegations about CIAin Chile. Congress adoptedughes-Ryan amendment, whichthe Agency to report to Congressimely fashion" all covenother than those intended solely for obtaining intelligence. The amendment stipulated lhat each such operation mustresidential Finding thai it was "important ionational security" of the United States. By enacting these restrictions the legislators gave voiceidespread sentiment that covert activity of the kind carried out in Chile03 should be far more closely monitored. In this unforeseen manner. Agency actions under Richard Helms made it illegal for future presidents to order DCIs lo carry out their directives without first informingclms's experience suggests that this was notad thing.

Over lite years. Richard Helms would express frustration over theaccorded the Agency's role in Chile by Congressional investigators, journalists, and historians. "Chile was |not] running the world" he remarked at one point. Clearly the retrospective focus on the rise and fall of Allendc skews our understanding of Helms's actual perspective and priorities al Ihe time Nor does Helms recall devoting much time to Chilean mailers once Allende had beenlthough the former DCI's recollections of the limited time he devoted to Chile are undoubtedlyhis name has been permanently linked lo Allende's. To many this seems an unjust reward for Richard Hclms's long and distinguished service as Director nf Central Intelligence.

"US CoiijtcKv. Sennic. Comminee on Foreign Relations, lltanngs: domination af RU/aml Helta* in Be Ambaiutdorran and CIA Imeimitlonal and Oowiifnl Cneg..

UiWauimuion. DC:hcrcnttrr titcd as lltanncs: Helmi ta Intnl.

"Ilclm* interview.une IW)

Chapter 5

Defectors and Hostile Penetration

Robert M. Hathaway

Lunching one day with Wmtiingion Pan editor Ben Bradlcc. long after leaving the Agency, Richmd Helms suddenly asked the journalist. "Do you knoworried about most as Director of theradlcc mentioned several of the obvious topics, then fell silent. Hclms's response was unexpected. "The CIA is the only intelligence service in the Western world which has never been penetrated by theelmsreplied "Thai'sorried about.'"

Although Bradlec doubtless accepted the contention that CIA was still inviolate, thereertain ambiguity in Hclms's response. Did he worry only about the potential threat, or did he perhaps also worry tbat the KGB mighl already have penetrated CIA?CI ever be certain that his agency has escaped significant hostile penetration? Or must he simply build the best safeguards he can and then trust to his subordinaies' skill andlurk?

Al oooom.eplyradlcc was an aa of faith, anassumption. ForCI'* understandable hunger foron these mailers, the scry nature ol countrrintelligence precludes certainty. All questions remain open, all possibilities thinkable Individuals cleared of malignant designs al one moment may piomptly fall again under suspicion, for counterintelligence demands eternal skepticism. In reality, an intelligence service would nol function for long if its members could notommon foundation of trust. Even counterintelligence officers must at times lay some of their caution lo one side. Yci to suspend doubt about the intentions or one's colleagues violates the lint principle ofIt represents the deliberate choice of hope over fear.

'Thomash* Man Win- AVpi /hi' StlftH AVhinf llrunt nnn* thr CIA (New York

Alfred A 3

Ri'htirtl Helms

The impossibility of absolute certainty docs nol lender lhefunction any less vital. If anything, il raises ihc slakes. "Being penetratedostile service is one of ihc realelms once remarked. "Any Diieetor of Central Intelligence is bounde deeplyabout Ihe day that he may walk into the office and have someone tell himoviel penetration has been found in the organization. This isirector's nightmarc."J

Defectors frequently furnish the first leads about hostile penetration. But valuable as they are. not all defectors can be equally trusted, 'some deliberately fabricate information in an effort to exaggerate ihcirOthers mix fact with fantasy until Ihey no longer remember which is which. Most dangerous of all, some arc dispatched by the enemy toandalse defector whose infonnatiou is believed to be irue can disrupt an entire intelligence service. For this reason, determining the bona lides Or authenticity of defectors takes precedence over almost all other counterintelligence tasks.

Discovering that one's allies have been penetrated is almost asisaster asole in one's own service. Secrets passed to friends no longer remain confidential, joint operations fall apart, andreplace confidence. Each of these threeof one's own service, the genuineness of defectors, and the penetration of alliedbackhe other two. All three throw doubt on the CIA's fundamental integrity and capacity to carry out its missions. Richard Helms confronted all three as DCI. and Iwo ofof CIA's possible penetration and of defectors' bonathreatened his Agency wiih open schism. Ultimately, none of the three lend themselves to tidy once-and-fot-all solution.

The primary responsibility for protecting ihe Director from these dangers lay wiih the Counterintelligence (CI) Staff.taffwithin the Deputy Directorate of Plan*he CI Staff had been led4 by James Angleton, who had first practiced his Craftoung OSS officer in World War II. By the. Angleton's staff had evolved into an autonomous fiefdom, operating outside regularand enjoying direct accessuccession of DCls. When Helms moved into the Director's officengleton wasegend within thebrilliant, dedicated professional withexperience unmatched in the Western world. Like Helms. Angleton had made the transition from OSS to CIA alter lhe war, and bye wasixture of deference and awe. In Angleton's case Ihis

'Richaid ttclim. interview bv Knbcn M. Haitiaway. upcWashington. DC, Ml4 (hrrotter cited us Helms ink-mew. JO May

he "Deputy" wu dropped fiorn Ih* name* of Ihe Directorates ol SupportAdmi muralntelligence, and Science and Tectuiotegy- Ihe Direciaraie ot Plant.continued lo uie Ibe alternate term Clandestine. Service*m renamed the Directorate ol Operations {DO)*

attitude was reinforced by his consciously enveloping himself aad his tlalT In aa aura of mystery, hinting al knowledge of grave secrets and hiddentoo sensitive to share.

6 it was Angleton who managed tocopy of Nikita Khrushchev's secret denunciation ot Stalin he-

rotc tne Soviet Union's Twentieth Party Congress. This coup, on topistinguished wamrne record, established Anglcton's reputation foe all time and ensuredlace of prominence in the Agency. His relatively modest position in Ihe chain of command in no way reflected his actualSeveraleek, fot example, he would drive Allen Dulles home fromask that afforded himaccess to the DCL In one notable instance. Angleton and Dulles debated the relative merits of Helms and Richaid Bisscl) to succeed Frank Wisncr as Deputy Director for Plansngleton thus found himself in ihe extraordinary position of advising on Ihe selection of his new boss."

Utterly convinced of ihe seriousness of the threat facing the West. Angleton by thead come loet of views that, ifponended grave consequences for the United Slates. Angletonthat the Soviet Union, guided by asroup of leader* as ever served one government, was implacable in its hostility toward Ihe West. International Cornmunism remained rnorwliihic. and reportsft between Moscow and Peking were only part of ann "integrated and puiposclul Socialistngleton wiofeought to foster false stones of "splits, evolution, power struggles, economic disasters, |andl good and bad Communism" to presentilderness of mirrors" to the confused West. Once this program of slra-legic deception had succeeded tn splintering Western solidarity. Moscow would find it an easy matter to pick off the Free World nations one by one. Only ihe Western intelligence services, in Angleton's view, could counter this challenge and slave off disaster. And because the Soviets had penetrated every one of these services, the fate of Western civili/alion rested,arge extent, in the hands of the counterintelligence experts. Their "onlyngleton told members of the CI Staff shortly befuie Helms became DCI, was "penetration andMiere is no otherpinion within the CIA on Angleton and his views was sharply divided. Many of the officers most experienced in Bloc affairs endorsed the principal tenets of hisowhere was this Iruer

than in the DDPs Soviel Russia Divisioneaded6 by David B. Murphy. Others, however, ridiculed Angleton's habitual tendencyec all Soviet actions as purposeful, rather than tuole for chance, coincidence, or other coniingcnt explanations.ormer Angleton disciple described how in Angleton's scheme of things 'The circle ofgrew ever wideroint of real absurdity wasy the, more lhan one officer familiar withork had concluded lhat his obsession with Soviet machinations had so skewed his pcrspeclive as lo undermine lhe effectiveness of the entire CItudy completed for ihc Directorate of Opciatmiis tDO)6 termed himan of loose and disjointed thinking whose theories, when applied lo matters of public record, weie patently unworthy of seriousEven his detractors, however, conceded lhal the CI chief was. alter bis ownenius.

Although Helms knew lhal Anglclon provoked hostility in some quarters, he also admitcd the man's abilities, intelligence, and lersacily. Angleton's experience, be believed, made him lhe olTicer best able to fathom the arcane world of double agents, dismfcemation. and falsewhere appearances were often Utile moreisguise for duplicity. A* DCI Helms sometime* mystified andother senior officers by bis staunch support for Angleton. Howard Osborn. Director of Security, recalls "how Helms nescr turned (Anglesonl down onven if everyoneeeting opposed Angleton'* view. Helms always decided in favor of his CI chief. "It neversborn insists, "no mailer how senior [Angleton's' opponentshom exaggerates the ease, but thisnaturally served to increase Angleton's stature and power in the Agency. David Murphy has explained how he tended to defer to Angleton, on the assumption that with such firm hacking front Ihe DCI. Angleton musi know someihing that others did not.'0 Long alter he retired. Helms conceded thai he eventually came lo believe that Angleton had gone "abit ovctboard" in some of hiss DCI, howevet, Helms's steady support madeey Agency figure, who was welltoeading role in some of the most controversial episodes of the Helms yean.

Vuriy Ivanovich Nosenko

Of all the problems that Richard Helms confronted during his nearly seven years as DCI, few gave him greater trouble lhan the Nosenko case.

Monster Plot: in lliet Yuriy Ivaiioneh6 (hereafter cited as Hail, "MunilcrCI William Colhy forced An^etoa to retire int

'Cleveland Cram, memorandum, "DiicustionMr. Howard Osborne"S.

lor the Record.8


Indeed, lie later confided.on't think there has ever been anything more frustrating in my life.""

The beginning of the affair goes back several years beforeas DOoviet KGB officer Yunycontacted Amctican Embassy officer* in Geneva with an offerintelligence information. Over the nest nine days SovietTennent fPelc) Bagley secretly met with Nosenko on fiveDuring these furtive rendezvous. Nosenko revealed Ihc identity of{ Soviet intelligence had recruited, the lo-

cation ofeats microphones in the US Embassy in Moscow, and other useful leads Onune. Nosenko relumed lo Moscow, after agreeing io reestablish contact wiih CIA when next in the West. Bagley, exultant over his new source, sped back to Headquarters to report.'

The defection sis months earlier of another KGB officer, Anatoliy Golusyn. heavily influenced the CIA's reaction to Bagley '* new find. Agency officers, accustomed io working with wispy leadsaucity of hard data, marveled at their apparent good fortune in obtaining two so potentially valuable souicc* almost simultaneously. The more experienced officers, however, were immediately skeptical lhal good fortune had any-Ihing lo do wllh this timing. Gnlitsyn had warned that Moscow wouldprovocateurs and false leads to discredit bis information and to protect Soviet penetrations within the American Government Aftera briefing on Bagley'* new source, Gohtaynronouncedisinformation agent sent to sidetrack CIA's hunt fot moles.'1

For reasons most intelligence professional* still do not understand. Angleton accepted at face value virtually every judgment Golitsynover moteecade.onsequence,nthusiasm evoked only cold skepticism from the coumeiintelligence cruet, who used his great prestige to persuade Bagley that Nosenko tepresentcd nothreat Nineteen months later, when Nosenko reappeared in Geneva and announced his desire to defect. Agency officers wurkmg on the case arbitrarily dismissed tile possibility of his being bona fide. In earlyIA. giving Nosenko no inkling of its suspicions, whisked him out of Geneva and back to the United States. Twooffailed to dispel these doubts, and in April DDf* officers confined himafehousc in Maryland and informed him that CIA had known all along of his KGB mission. Despite Noscnko's repeated assertions lhal lieenuine defector, DDP began hostile interrogation two days laier. In the months and years that followed, the Counterintelligence Staff and Soviet

"US CoifI Irani r. Sefceicmeartmgi.efa/ FmitUmiraanfi.reat (Mg. le ied asriaiuaaJia* otV.

"Han. "Manuelraid.

Russia Division dismissed tlie voluminous information his questioning producedmokescreen designed to obscure iuscs of real value. Some of what Noscnko offered was. indeed, transparently false. Vet when Noscnko produced information whose accuracy Ihey could not dispute, his handlers claimed it was "giveaway'* material that the Soviets presumed OA already had."

The casepecial urgency when Noscnko reported that he had personally reviewed the KGB files on Lee Harvey Oswald. President Kennedy's assassin. Nosenko claimed lhat the KGB, after9 to the Soviet Union, had identified the American as unstable and declined to have anything to do with him This remained true,io Nosenko, even alter the former murine revealed he hadadarpecially believede nf grcal interest to the Soviets. As Helms would observeongressional committee many years later. "This strained credulity at the time II strains it lo this day."'* If Nosenko's assurances concerning Oswald were true, then the persistent reports of Sosiet involiement in Ihe assassination could he dismissed On the other hand, if the KGB had sentislead CIA. suspicionsirect Soviet connection with Kennedy's death would be reinforced, with consequences. Helms would later say. lhat could bengleton explained, was ihe question of whether the KGB was involved in thelablishmg Nosenko's bona fides. Helms observedB.atter nf the utmost importance" lo ihe United Stales "and, indeed, to the world.""

The Noscnko case had attracted the attention of Richard Helms from its very beginning When Noscnko fitsf approached CIAelms was Deputy Director for Plans, the Agency officer formally responsible for Ihe conduct of Soviet intelligence and coummniellir^nce operations He had participated as well in the discussions4 leading to Nosenko's ccrnfinernent Later that year. Helms had gone privately to Chiefrl Warren, to warn him lhal his commission investigating President Kennedy's assassination should not automatically accept Nosenko'sabout Oswald, since CIA could not vouch for Nosenko's

Noscnkoough case to crack. After over seven months of hostile examination had failed toonfession. Helms concluded thai the likely payoff of further inlerrogation would not compensate for thedrain on Agency resources In4 heapid windup of the case This was therun iheseveral such directives whose implementation would long beome weeks

"House.JFK. (V. p. IJ.

1 AbjIcsmw Interview.ouse. Hearings. AisnoMailimi ef JtK. IV.Hail, "'llie Monuer Plot."

"Tenner"Memorandum far the Rccotd. Niiiemher

I>tfti:it)is nnd Monde Penetration

later, faced wiih continuing uncertainty about Nosenko's staiusn Soviet Russia Division who held out hopereakthrough. Helms reluctanily (evoked his order

Inoviet Russia Division irilotmcd Helms, nowol Central Intelligence, lhal Nosenko had been transferred toaccordingalcr DO" investi-

gation, he waswer amenities than he would have received in mosI jails or prisons within lhe United Stales/'"

had. therefore, had aassociation wiin me case well before he became DCI at the

August his iincnsincss over use wwole altair

led him to Inst met Murphy and DDP Desmond Fit/Gerald lo close lhe case withinays In issuing this directive. Murphy later explained. thai knowledge of the case could nol he contained forever, and lhat he was unwilling lo accept lhe inevitable attacks from Congress and the press once il became known that "wc had held |Noscnko| in theseand in what would he interpreted as outright defiance of law andhe most suitable resolution of lhe case. Helms thought, would be lo return Nosenko to the Soviet Union, whete at least he would have little access to the Western

ATeqaesT.Tfclrm ciUmded his fill-day deadline until the endut lhe stubborn Nosenko still refused to conies, Finally inB Division (ihc new name foi SR)final report" on the case, whiten primarily byengthy compendium purporting to analyze all aspects of thenequivocally concluded that NosenkoGB agent, dispatched to divert CIA domthai nil,in spot hostile penetrations by overwhelming il with false

laW DuorSana* ot Plans .at natanrd is*po-aian

"Then '

llfjiny. USB. Memsiandurii for ihe Record.Aujjud IW

W May'1elm, <nierv*w.

uch lo Hclms's ilitmay. Bugley's "final report" proved anything bulew weeks after the study's completion. Leonardoviel Bloc Division officer who had long haihorrd doubts about the prevailing views on Nosenko. went out of channel* and submitted topage iTKrnorandoen documenting his concerns about the case Afteritch for Nosenko's authenticity, McCoy went on to say that the question involved far mure than justiceingle individual. Theof Nosenko. he wrote, "contaminates our CI analysis now. iu past cases, andong lime in the future. Rather than being disinlbrmcd by the enemy, wc arc deludingoreover, should word of Nosenko's treatment filter back lo the Soviel Union, other potentialwould be discouraged from corning over."

McCoy's memorandum dcrnonstratcd the high stakes involved inNosenko's true status, quite aside from the Oswald connection Particularly telling was his warning (hat the matter went far beyond the fate of one individual. As long us CIA assumed that NoscnkoGB provocateur, no Agency asset operating behind (he Iron Curtain wasfiom suspicion if his reporting confirmed anything Nosenko said No defector could be accorded legitimacy unless he denounced Nosenko Moreover. Nosenko's assurances thai the KGB had failed to infihraie CIA could be legardcd only as disinformation designed to mask scnousThe resultant suspicion mighl well destroy the effectiveness of Agency operations against the Soviet Bloc and sow undeserved doubts .ihr.ii ihe allegiance of loyal Agency officers

Nor was thisypothetical danger. In an earlierfor the Director, written near the endcCoy had complainednegative environment" within the Soviet Bloc Division that was generating:

a widespread feeting of (moralion. futility, andM standards of information and source evaluation have been abandoned and evenith bad analysis driving good analysis out of existence, The validity of Soviel aiea cxpcncncc is being denied. The effect is paralysis of our Soviet effort.1-

A separate investigation earned out by (he Inspector General. Qcedon Stewart,8 echoed McCoy's charges The anitudche Soviet Bloc Division, the Inspector General reported, "is now negative, defensive,defeatist. It seems thai almost every or*?ntionaI opportunity is viewed witli such suspicion lhal defense against the suspected penetration, provocation or KGII operation becomes our primary objective.""

"That uady was ones ntorrd ta asell dm of On nvart orages.

"teoaaid McCoy.lot Ctatf. SR Diviuoa. 'Some OWniaiOH aa tb* Vtunku0S. cats? rlm't leemaey io Apnl ISot. Leonard MiCoy.lor theMOTtM INtk "tiooliM Siewan. Me mouoaum lor the Rviord. 'Interim Report Smvey of Sitt.

The reception accorded two FBI sources eodcnamcd SCOTCH aisd BOURBONear om these dart assessment SCOTCH, an officer in Ihe KGB. andRU colonel, bolh offered infnnna-linti supporting Nosenko's story, while denying knowledge of significant penetration of ihe CIA. By giving credence to Nosenko's claims, each fell under suspicion.7 "thousandoncluded that both were dispatched agcnls whose goals paralleled Nosenko's. Only in latet years dsd the Agency concede thai both were probably bona fide In tbe meantime, valuable leads were ignored while Angleton's Counterintelligence Staff spun increasingly complex theories lo explain Soviel machinationsubsequent Agency investigation"the CI Stall and the SR Division, heavily influenced by rheirwilh Golusyn and Noscnko. Hadounterintelligence environment in which it was difficult, if not impossible, for any Sovietsource, walk-in. or defector to be accepted as

Helms was well aware of these problems, liven before McCoy's warning reached his desk, he had determined toresh perspective into the Noscnko case Rariy in7 he directed hisAdm Rufus Taylor, tohorough Investigation of the affair. Taylor later recalled that Helms had told him that thisailer that worried him deeply, and lhat he feared that the Ul H' officer* handling Noscnko had losi iheir objectivity. The DDCI added thai Helms felt:

tl was svroag to keep |Nosenko| confined and we had to do surranharat with him one way or tneas really distressed about the fact lhat Ihis fellow had been in confinement so long ami (hut tbey had never been able to arriveonclusion as io wlsether heonand be niu bad to get it revolted"

. Angleton opposed bringing Taylor into the case, llerious mistake, he later remarked "What had been highly compannien-talizcd had become another group going into the cniirelrcal error ofecalling these events. Angleton conceded lhat Helms had faced immense ondersiand the frustrationsront office in terms of not resolving ihings.ailure tohat you don'i see the resolving of cases in your ownYou've got lo live with these sort offter three years of indecision, however, the DCI was no longer prepared to wait aor Nosenko's. The CI chief's advice would be rejected


w^inlaylor.. Uy lLhcn-af.e. died as Taylorm.Interview,uly iMa


Hclms's directive lo Taylor7 finally broke Ihe logjam, although Ihe case dragged nn for another two years. In May. Howard Osborn. Director ot Security, informed Ihc DDCI that his office had never been convinced lhal Nosenkooviet plant and had substantialabout the professionalism of the methods Soviet Bloc Division had used in interrogating Nosenko. Specifically. Ihc two polygraphgiven Ihe Russian had been designed nol to establish his truebut only io "breakAt one point the polygraph had been rigged wiih bells and lights, which could be manipulated by SB personnel hidden in another room, and whose sole purpose was to rattlesborn recommended that Bniccenior siaff member of the Office of Security, be placed in charge of further interrogation.'*

Unimpressed by Bagley'S lengthy review. Admiral Taylor repottedthat neither Bagley nor anyone else had been able to explainSoviels might have hoped to benefit by sending Nosenko asThe Russian, he concluded, posed no threat to CIA andbe rehabilitated. The DDCI also brought the disturbing news lhatthaic had created in ihc Soviel Bloc Divisionacility. The DCI then

directed Taylor to proceed as he though best, and the Office ofNosenkomore comfortable quarters near

Washington in latehree days later, Bruce Solie beganinvestigation of Nosenko's bona fides. At the same time, lhe Officecontinued to send ihc Soviet Bloc Division daily reports,if Nosenko were slill detained there Murphydivision were thus entirely cui out of any further involvement in the

Proceeding deliberately. Solie did noi report his findingsS. His conclusions were unequivocal: Nosenko was, in fact, what he Claimed lo be aod should be acceptedegitimate defector. Solic's timing was propitious, for less lhan iwo weeks earlier the FBI had comeimilar judgment. Reporting lo Helmsdmiral Taylor endorsed Solie's findings and recommended "icselllement and rehabilitation of Nosenko wiih sufficient dispatch to permit his full freedom

Seventeen days later Helms called most of lhe senior officersin the case to his office lo consider Nosenko's fate. He firstof those present to comment on Nosenko's true intentions andTaylor, Kararnessines. Osborn, Inspector Soviet Bloc Division chief, all

"Ho*ard Oiboin. Director of Srcumy, Mcrmrandurn tor lhe Record,lnanl Ovtxiin.y John6 (heiealler cuedsboin interview.Han. "Mooterr Plot."

"Howe.iuitllitfrt/ IrK,

that Nosenko be released from unci CIA csniody. Although there were differences about whether Ins authenticity had been conclusively proved or remained in dispute, almost everyone present agreed (hat Nosenko bad important services to offer CIA and should he retained under an Agency contract The only dissenters from this general line were the three Counterintelligence Staff officcis present, who steadfastly argued thai Nosenko had been dispatched by the KGB and should undergo further in-tcrrogalion before the Agency decided his future."

Revealing his frustration at the lack of consensus on NosenkoHelms "rathei tartly" (according to one cimtcmporaneous document) reminded his subordinates that the everesidential electionoor time to askecision. He. therefore, ruled that no final judgments would be madeebruary of ihe followinge wasimpatient wiih ihe Counterintelligence Sniff for failing to document its reservations more convincingly. The meeting's minutes report that Helms "severely tasked" the CI Staffstaccato, humorlesslthough offering no judgment of his own on Nosenko's motives,T decided lhat ihe Agency would share Solie's paper with the FBI.*

Onhe DCI once more summoned his subordinates to discuss the case. After again asking each officer for his optmon. Helms banded down the new Agency position concerning Nosenko Noting that substantial doubts about Nosenko's bona fides remained. Helms stressed the need to maintain the momentum of the investigation He instructed the Office of Security to continue to elicit information from Nosenko. and to be careful to deny him any opportunity to make contact with the KGB. He also ruled, however, that CIA should progressively relax its restraints on Nosenko's freedom, and that Security should proceed with his reha%ilita-tion. Finally, he decided that Nosenko should belA contract."


Many years later, Helms recalled lhe dilemma he hud faced. "Here wc had held this man for (his long period, if you want to pui i( this way, in durance >de We had interrogated him. We had done everything we knew how io do about him And it was gettinglace where ii was likely to turn into some sort of scandal if we didn't regularize hisut wha( lo do?as faced wiih theever fellas given adequate evidence that the man was cither clean or notl was still muddy on the dayinally said he must beo Helms refrained from making final judgment on Nosenko's authenticity. The Agency was forced to "take (its) chances as io what he represented, whether be really was soil workang for the Soviet* or he wasn't still working

Menus urn) am It* (Vt't.

Meintuanditin to- Cm*f. CI,Deccaabeifoe

of IVaecistand-aa, tiiacd b. Hoard Ovtnr* .Mc

for iheelms was placed in an unenviable position.idn'i like having In doidn'i like the nvessiness mac was involved in our nol being able lo decide distinctly lhal he was one thing or Ihee remembered Hut the nine for indecision had passedimply had on myituation which had becornehis case simply had lo be cleaned up rrgaidlcst of whai his bona ii.fri were,ovedlean il

In the springoscnko movedrivate residence and obtained his own aulornobile CIA provided himew identity, and he subsequently married an American woman, filed for cilifcnship. and worked productively as an Agency consultanteonard McCoy, now acting chicl of the Counterintelligence Staff, was able lo report that Noscnko was "probably Ihe mosl valuable source of counterintelligencethai the US Government has ever had."

Forew additional matters required attention before the case could be wound up. The first concerned Congress Infter getting the DCI's approval of his "talkingegislative Counsel John Maury briefed the sensor staff member* of CIA's four Congressional suricorruniitccs about ihe affair. Some doubts remained unresolved coricern. ing Nosenko's legitimacy. Maury- explained He briefly alluded la Nosenko's long ordeal asnder highly securewiih ihe implicaiion that these measures were uivdertakcn largely to protect Nosenko from KGB assassins. Maury reported to Helms that none of (he staffers registered particular curiosity about the case and that he doubted that all nl them would necessarily inform their chairmen. In his opinion CIA need lake no further action."

A second muiiei demanding action was stalling. Reporting tn Helms on the case in ihe autumnaylor had warned thai the situation in the Soviet Bloc Division was very unhealthy, that (cars aboui Soviet penetration had disrupted ihe Division's effectiveness, and thai mayorchanges were required8 the Inspector General's Staff, almost

"llelmay Ittsi

"-Ihe Bona lidtsaacknsrai to lawsard McCoy. AMI.lor itw DCIS

"John Miury.Coumrl. draft memorandum. It lan* lunu- j. -iMjors Memorandum ror ih*

a ii age-

urhappincs* with their handling of the Nosenko case Certainly [Murphy's successor, had the appearanceandpiekcdi-i>i ru- ilie DCI traced thenack lo OSShenrief period they had shared living quarters'

Bagley and Murphy vigorously dispute the idea that either left the Division under any sonloud. Both claim that (hey were due forand had requested their new positions, and point out lhal the aswgn-memv were attractive and logical ones for persons of thenelms himself no longer remembers the circumstances of the transfers In any event, their reassignment gratifiedhohorough house-cleaning in the Soviet Bloc Division, while those tryingesolve lhe Nosenko case doubtless also found Bagley's and Murphy's departure

rateful Helms turned lo the individual whose painstaking work had exiracled the Agencyolemially explosive situalion.0 the DCI awarded Bruce Solie the Intelugence Medal of Merit, lhe Nosenko case had beenucvubus hanging over ourngleton recalls Helms saying, and the award to Solie probably reflected the DCI's gratitude and relief at having finally gotten free of the threat thai il had posed for so long.**

"IM. MtiTOfniiiliim tor its* (tecoril. 'laierini Rnpotiol SB Doa>

} MaarwiewRoom M. Haflsaway. uar racardiagC,S"iml ai Kiiuolry intnvicw).

"Oaviil Murptiy. Interview byainaway upe recording. VV'astii-ici.ui. DC. II Mat IsfM iSaraaMrr cianl aiiotaIW Ainniaas-IFK. XII. a.


middle-aged soviet woman hao waited inio triedossy and asked (or asylum. Her married name, Svctlana Allitbycva. then meant little, but her maiden name immediately grabbed (he attention of Washington officialdom Ihe would-be defector was the daughter of Joseph Stalin.

Hereeal coup for Iheher defection were genuine. But there were dangers as well. Suppose sheoviel provocation, pan of some diabolical scheme lo embarrass the United Stales? What if she were mentally unstable" Moscow propagandists wouldield day playing on the theme of the heartless American* taking advantageack, defenseless woman. Or suppose she later changed her mind about defecting and charged entrapment? Kach of these possibilities suggested ihe need for prudence andareful interview before the United States accepted her siory at face value.

Yet other considerations dictated haste The Soviets would eventually trace Atltluyeva to the American Embassy,eisurely investigation into her mental state would he impossible amidst angry Russian demands for her return. India (like the United States) does not recognize any right of diplomatic asylum. Moreover, the New Delhi government was not known for its fortitude in standing up to Moscow. Alliluyevu's continued presence in India would almost surelyonfrontation with Indian eager to please their Soviet friends


Hostile Penetration

Perhaps no issue Helm, faced while DO threatened Ihc Agency'smoic seriously than Ihc question of hostile penetration. Ironically, an actual pcnciiaiion is noi icquired to cnpple an intelligence .setvice. Merely the suspicion that an agency has been penetrated can shut down operations, mutilate leads, and destroy the underlying trusi in one's colleagues every intelligence officer must possess.

When Anatnliy Golitsyn defectede brought withealth of Information on KGB personnel, organization, and mclhods. His counlc(intelligence and penetration leads, however, were considerably less

Ocfciinis und Hmiile Peneliuiiiin

helpful (ml) infter ihe Courttcrintclligcnee Suit tud runtedresponsibility lot Iii* handling, did he become insistent Outhad successfully placed several high-level operatives withinThis informal Ion, of course, squared perfectly withissumplions. and (he Counterintelligences sonnits operational caseractice later IX) invesiigaion-CMTaordinary" breach of customary securityeforelud fingered specific individuals as likely Soviet iipcnts.

Bf Illt5t ivn<i. Angle Ion huderies ol meetings with ihe FBIursue Golitsyn's leads. Alter several fruitless months, however. FBI Director I. Fdgar Hoover lost patience and ordered his agents to break off contact with Golitsyn With the single exception of one low-levcl employee who had not worked loi CIA in several years, the Russianiled to prove any of his allegaiions about KGB penetration. Gnlitysn himself, Hoover darkly hinicd. couldoviel provocation. Tlie FBI's withdrawal from the case dismayed Angleton but failed to shake his confidence in (he accuracy of Golitsyn'* accusations. Osiietly he continued his search for evidence of treachery, unperturbed by ihe inability of aof Sov ici sources. Nosenko among them.ubstantiate Oolitsyn'sThese individuals, he explained, weic all port of ihe KGB'sprogram to counteract Goliisyn's leads"'

"Pn freer

' oiiwo Mei.o) inlciiru. ISJur*

While his position gave Anglclon unique powerake action against nullviduaK whose allegiance he doubled, he was not alone in his belief lhal live KGU had successfully penetrated CIA. In8 word reached Helmsoviet Bloc Division officer had told an FBI agent thatT

ightoviet plant. Helms called the offending officer indressed him down for carrying these matters outsideAt the same time, be directed Howard Osbom's Office ofwas about to depart for his new

iMany yearsould remember (hismey worked mc over. Ititch.*'" Bul Security failed toany damningnainlains. Helms never alluded io ihisnever even hinted that he had anything less than the fullesthim.

Helms remembers the incident as well.elt that we owed any staff man against whom allegations of this kind were made nut only Ibc fullest kind of examination but the fullest Opportunity lo clear himself if hee explained many years later. The former DCI expressedfor what he saw as some of his predecessors' policy of gelling nd of officeis as soon as allegations of disloyalty surfaced;

I felt lhat wc owed them more thanestigalore clear-cut decision one way or Ihet isn't souestion olivil libertarian,ust honest-to-Godo have them smeared when sonsetiines there was no real ba'is for Ihis was unfair,anted io ice justice done.*1

Other Agency officers, however, resented the fact that

forced to undergo ihe grueling Office of Security investigation. Gordon M. Stewart, who served as Inspector General under Helms, later recalled his reaction when he first heard Angleton describe the case against]

You know, when you don'thred of evidence and you do Useon uiCunutaiitial reasoning, you can name just about any damnyou want to, andhat's theued lhat one up. It jnsi scentedihat itari of Jim'si struck: mc as very I'm concerned. Ihe ease thai Jim madeit would

havelie last piece of reasoning you would bringase where you already had evidence. Bul it's certainly not the kind of thing thai you woald sianase wiih."


m.:. i D May I'MM.

icudii. interview- by Rouen M. t'aiha>iy. iapemri inDC.'WJ ilieo-iiulir' cited a* Sicwan interview.UH4)

liven alter Ihc invcsiip.ationil!


iheicence chicl

never rccngni/cd ihe incongruity of his belief lha*working so

hard io document Angleton's suspicion* about Nosenko, wasoviet ageni Rut this dor* suggest bow constituted matin* had become, bow pervasise wa* iht* fear of hostile penetration. rVthan* it was poetic justice thai one ol hi* own analysts eventually charged thatovietaccusation, fittingly enough, supported by no more evidence than that against I

Despite the lack ofunloviet mole coniinucd.

|has remembered that, when he

Bloc Division chiefne of his priorities was to work with Securitynce and for all whether his Division had been penetrated. Despite an exhaustive search, he failed to uncover "one scrap ol supportive evidence that there was or ever hadostile peneiraiion of his Division.'* Kvcniually. except for Angleton and ht* allies both in and out-Side ihe Counterintelligence Stall, tbe paralysing (car ot treachery within the Agcnry subsidedelms could retire secure in ihe knowledge lhat no caseurrent penetration of his Agency had wiib*lood close ei-ami nation

Not all Wcvtcro service* could make lhat claim The CIA wa* notintelligence agency inreoccupied wiih the possibilitypenetration. The French, live British, and the Canadians, as wellol Ihc smaller services, all experienced Ihcir own crises ofIhis period. In pail these doubts leOeeicd irrefutable evidence nfpenetration. In pan only the general fears of the time. "Alliedwas brought abouttandstill by thisthe services inteirupicd iheir normal routines to resolve theseFuelingoubts from Washington were lame* Angleion

hen Helms became DCI. allied counterintelligence officers still .nulled from the jolt* they had received earlier in the decade, when several of ihe Western services had uncovered high-levelMI6's Georgepy nng centered in lhe British Admiralty, and Hem/peration within WestundesruH'hricHiendienst, Haiold "Kim" Philby had fled lo (he Soviet Union, at lasl confirming suspicions thai had festered for mote than IUn this charged atmosphere, few felt prepared to discount Goliisyn's insistent warnings ihai the British. French, and other services were still penetrated.


ihe inescapable irony ol ihis seemsthose mosl outspoken in Iheir winnings olfound themselves suspected of disloyalty

Anglelnn. even Golilsyn. ultimately had to reckon with Inc oik- irreducible truth in the counterintelligence business ihai no one i% immune Irom wept ckui Iia clastic example ot the revolution devouringwn

Helms never fully accepted llie panicked warnings lhat ihe KGB had successfully placed its agents within CIAoimcr DOCI Rufus Taylor was asked whether ihe possibilityigh-level penetration had particularly woiried Helms:

No. Idid getot ike Impression that be Aratghl.otsibtsity. IM list esvdeuce thatfcmr aclually existed was lacking and hequite lekKtam in believe thai, wiih use *camya: hand, you could iely unnn ibere being anyrnciid-lion. In other weeds, he v> as ouite skeptical ol it."

Taylor und oilier senior officcix also confirm that Helms eventually cameelieve that Golilsyn* apocalyptic views had adversely affected Anglcton's judgment

Aad yet the DCI continuedive his couoienmelligerKe chieffree rein, lielms allowed, even encouraged Angleton inKaramessines and rcpon directlyhe DCI's office. Hrsecret overseas inps. although ihcy frequently disrupted ticsforeign services and Agency

nines.nwaveringorallegations, hi. patronizing aililudc inward those less alarmist ihan he. and his aspersions on Ihe loyalties of certain allied intelligence officials Created problems [

Menrnonilum lo Chwt'SR.spill


Melius seems lo have Mood aside Kvcii alter learning that Angleton had deliberately undermined Hie effeciivcness of an miputlnni CIA statlon.f" 7

|Hclmsio restrain hi* counterintelligence chicl.

Hut ihcacking went further than merely declining lo rein Angleton in. when forced lo choose among contending wihotdi nates, he frequently adopted Angleton'* positioo a* hisrugtam lhal Helm* tnheiiicd. which monitored dome*llcrovides an example of ihis.orking part of lhe lime wiih the FBI, CIA hadail-opening program, mainly bused In New York. The operution had iiriginatedeans uf identifyinp American* who were cooperating with ihe Soviet Union and it* intelligence agencies against the Unitedy lhr, however, it had taken on ihc additional purpose uf dornesiic mi,nil iti directed against politicalrotest organizations, and exircmisl group* Wiihm CIA there wj* considerable debute over thevalue lo Agency inlelligeiKe opcralinns. a> well a* substantialthai disclosure of Agency involvement in this *ott ofwould create senous embarrassment. The fact that (he FBI had withdrawn from ihe program mcontinuing lo share in ihe CIA* take" fuithei suggested lhat the operation's value did not warrant its risks.9 an Impector General's survey (initially recommended that CIAending ihe program. Nevertheless, when assured thai the FBIto value the program (even as it refused to allot personnel orforelms rejected the Inspector General's rceominendaiions cither to end the program or submit it to regular revaluations.'

Two years later, the Chief Posial Inspector raised the issue once more. Onelm* inei with several of hi* chief lieutenants io consider lhe mailer Deputy Director for Plans Kararnessines fotvelullythat ihe program should be terminated, in light off exposure and the project's minimi valueIA.position was seconded by lhe Diicctor of Security Angleton. however, whose CI Staff had been running lhe program since the, vigorously argued otherwise Sure, there were risks, he conceded, but CIA "can and should continue lo live wiihesides, he added, the Counterintelligence Staff viewed the operations as/unrig*une. Helms met ssthe Postmaster General to review the project's future. He alsoIV program with Attorney General John Mitchell, one of President Nixon'sdvisers When neither Cabinet officer objected io ihecontinuation. Helms sided wiih Angleton and grantedeprieve.

"Church turnout lie,VhU. p.



may not haveise decision. One al lame. Schlcxinger's liisi actions ullcr becoming DCI in early Is*'1 wa* io close down Ihellclms was subsequently castigated for not taking this step much earlierociefeller Commission found iKji "ihe CIA's pnmaryesentually became parlieipation wnh ihe FBI In internal security func-

ihe CIA's participation was prohibited undei ihe

National Securitynce again. Angleton seems to have served his chiefhy did llclms continue toan whose judgment in iclmspcet appears flawed in so many rcspccls? This question's answer is difficult to divine,ew facts appear certain To Richard Helms,was an essential task requiring extraordinary knowledge and intellectual acuity lo Angleton. he had the acknowledged expert. Surely (his was isot an assete regarded lightly. Not was his esteem tor Angleton based solely on exploits from the distant pastole during theSix-Day War provided Helmsore recent reminder of just how valuable his CI chief could he.

line suosequeni accurxv ol irns preilic-mm rsutiiisncutpuIMIOrVin the Johnson While House and swept him mto the inner circle of ihedvisers. The experience almost certainly constituted the high point of Hclms's service as Dircclixr. Ii also firilni solidified Angleton's standing in the DO* estimation

Wanting to DDO Taylor. Helms believed 'Thai Jimanand ihai he. Helms, deplored thai obsession but thought thai Angleton was so valuable and so difficulteplace that his oihei ailribules outweighed ihe disadvantages of thengleiunseful devil's advocate. Helms told another officer Why dump htm. in theof an overriding rrrason'1

by thes. however, had Angleton himself not provided lhat overriding reason* By then many senior Agency officers had concluded lhat Angleton had outlived his usefulness, that he had slaved IM long in one position. Important responsibilities went neglected, while the coun-leritiielligencc chief went off on tangents having little to do wiih the Counterintelligence Staff's original mission. Angleton's -tail' almostignored ils crucial task of disseminating finishedand counterespionage information lo the intelligence community

'TtntefiaVtr.l bears acuteh-l, rawhc Itr'aw aat aay atartwthuacs <oa>iJncd astag Mm Clurf Postal latawcior to tie tond dn>mtipi^nin

insrtview. ISOa

Noi was Angletonoyal subordinate. After Helms hudmandated Nosenko's rehabilitation. Anglclon lor fourQuestions uhoul ihe Agency's new posi uouM contributed to the strain

relations that marked ihe period Near Ihe end ot iv/it. Angletonj nmi to ihe Agency's Chief otone of the tatter's

ealTicerspushed his be-

hat Nosenko was bona fide Thisatter. Angleton iiblcd. "aboutwe are not prepared to reverse ourselves tninalThe offending officer must he told that further discussions of this nature would nol be tolerated.

Hut ultimately, one goes back to the blighted carceis, the damaged

later Agency study found"

Nosenko's long incarceration "y

1"morally indefensible "f

one need noi accept ihcse judgments lo deplore the

ellects Angleton's grand theories of deception and conspiracy had on

grand theories of deception and conspiracy Agency activities. The experience of Richard Kovlch bears witness to their desiructivcncss.

A number of former Agency officers who knew both men have speculated on the reasons why Helms tolerated Angleton's malignfor so long. Some have suggested lhat Helms failed to recognize the seriousness of the problem. Angleton. in the eatly years, had been so innovative and so lar ahead of everyone else in the couaicriaielligence field, they maintain, lhal Helms never fully realized the injurious effects of his counterintelligence chief's "obsession."

* James I'fiiiMicld. iaicrvH*Rohen Mlaneashingum.hereafterirMir'dei. 4Hn. "Hart, llw Mimin- Ilia

Only rarely did Angle-ion's office provide staff guidance for ihc CIA'sdivisions. Angleton "considered himself almost the ultimate cus-lomer for mosl of his ownne lop-level oflkcr hase reluscd. loi example, to disseminate wilhin the Agency fifty-some reports

imk- Helms *jv. ot inc diftkullies Angle ion was creating bui dclihciaicly declined io take action. Gordonan. Hclms's Iin. General, has tied ihis inaction in ihe DCI* admintslra live mcihmls

The hr>llclms on nuns- as pes Is ol rrunat-eniciu Is his very iiioiwined

CiMSCrvalisill IO Ihr pstnU. you lltogtM say. ol (Sjsusily . ou didni

o dealruWeitv you would raider nra deallnnspfidfterangtrion icprcscMrd was one lhal hr was lalhri pleased jusl lo say. he must havehis.t's hrflci to have him around than nnl to have himHelmi) probably also Irtl ihii ntake God llimsell lo ihange Anglcioii So he put up wilh whai wen* sjuiie citfaity problems."

Some observers have pom ledhe close relationship Helms and Angkion enjoyed since ihe early days of CIA In the yeats aficr Dulles passed Helms over for DDI' in favor ol Bissell, these lies were solidified, as iwo distinct factions, centered around Helms and Bissell. emergedthe Clamleslinc Service The division was so obvious that the secretaries even grouped itadivtduah irno "we" and "ihey" categories Angleton was iirmly within Ihe Helms camp For Helms, the professionalrofession where trust and loyalty arc not lightly given, ihcsc incmotics ot sharedwere immensely important Moreover, moving against Angleton would have cost Helms dearly within the lightly knit wurld of Washingtonofficerson't think Dick was ever prepared to pay whatever price he would have fell wasne longtime fnend of both men has said For Helms lo have acted against Angle ion "would have cost Dick some voles in his own constituency. Dick Helmsonsummate Washington politician,now noho has mure skillfullyhis own support mechanisms in Washingion thann short, moving against Angleron would have entailed substantial political as well as personal costs

l. Helms might base done so. except lor one oveniding considcia-tion. One iciurns again and again to thegenerally accepted in spile of immense efforts over the years lo disprove it" that no significant penetration of CIA had ever occurred. Helms accorded Angleton much of the credit for ihis acxomplishrrtcot. although many Agencymain thai ii had been achieved despite, rather than because of. Angleton's long

"Stewart intnriew II May IvM "CoiihrieldS4.

(enure aschici ofounterintelligence. Bui hit Richard Helms, this record of. ihc bottom line Av he defined the issue, the choice Angkion imposed was not one of good versus badbai bcivscen loo much counierinielligencc and not enough And in lha; miujiiimi. Helm*intuitively" vetile for tbe former Today, long allcr these events, ihc debate over the wisdom ol this choice rages on, fueling ammosiiic. and dividing intelligence professionals as do few other issues Iroin the Helms era.

7 Kin-Day War

In many respects, ihe high poim ol Richard Hclms's tenure as DCI came in the early days ofune. Israeli military forcesurprise allaek against Egypt, Jordan, and Syria, bringing to itsrisis lhat had been steadily building for month* For the Johnson adminiMration. lied by political interest and emotional commitmenl to Israel, the Israeli strike raised grave questions Could the Israelis triumph without active American assistance? Even should thc> win.ostly victory sap Israel's future vitality? What role bad the Soviet Union played in bringing on Ihe crisis'* How would Moscow react if Russia's Arab fnends faced imminent defeat? Whai steps should the United States now lake? Should Washington airlift militaryi the cost of further underulining the American position in the Arab world?

For Ihe Johnson administration, sound and speedy answers to ihese questions were imperative. Even before fighting broke milune, the Israelis had been pressing Ihe White House for public stalcmenis ofihete hod even been caulious suggestions of joini military operations

ihe other with high slakes and intense pressures. Lyndon Johnson, Helms recalls, finally "came to understand what intelligence could do foror Helms. Middle Eastern developments first took on crisis proper toons oneeksaJem Garni Abaci Nasser had ordered ihe United Nations peacekeeping force out of the Sinai and quickly moved Fgyptian troops into the areas that United Nations unit* had vacated Onay. Nasser announced Hut the Gulf of Aqaba would,be closed to Israeli shipping, effectively cutting off Israel's port at

Service* Committee lo ask for an analysis of ihc cwalaling crisis. Within lourelm* hadpaper* lor Ihc Presidrni. one on overall Arab and Israeli military capabilities, the other on ihe *laic of US knowledge about affair* in ihe Middle Eau. Israelielm* informed lhe Presiderii. enjoyed "overall superiority" both on the gioond and in*

In the day* lhat followed. Helms repeatedly updatede**mem for the Whue House These revision* considerably shjrpencil the initial ap preciaiHtn ofay. but did not alter the ihrust of it* conclusion* Other agencies, notably ihe Slate Department,uchanguine view, fearing lhal the surrounded Israelis would find Ihe going far tougher lhan CIA analyst* conceded. To muddle lhe situation further. Tel Aviv onay chimed In with its own estimate, which described Arab inicniions in sinister lerms and professed to see Soviet machination* in IhcDirected by Helms lo comment on the Israeli assessment, the Office of National Estimates (ONE) responded. "We do noi believe lhat the Israelierious estimate of the soil they would submit to then own highather, they concluded, it wasantended to persuade the United State* lo provide Israel wiih military supplies,reater public commitment lo Tel Aviv, ap-prosc Israeli militaty initiatives, and put more pressure on Nasser."

Reassured, ihc DCI stood his ground On the cscning ofay. Secretary of State Deansked Helm* il hehe iudg-ments Agency analysts were making. Told ihai he did. Rusk observed. "Dick, there is only oneant ioLaGuardsa once icmaiked. if thisistake,eaut-""

Helm* and Kusk then proceeded to the Cabinet Room lo meet with President Johnson and his other key national security advise* The Presideni read the Israeli estimate and the ONE's short rejoinder and turned to Gen. Euile Wheeler, chairman of the Joint Chiefs. "You fellows think this Ise asked. When the general said yes, Johnson told Helms and Wheeler to "scrub this thing down" once more and report back to the White House. Returning to Headquarters that evening. Helms lold lhe Uoatd of National Estimates toooidlnated assessmentBy the following afternoon, ihc Boardew paper, written in collaboration with the Defense Intelligence Agency, lis message echoedassessment of the previous day and lold Johnson that Ihe Israelis would handily whip any possible combination of Atabreatly relieved Lyndon Johnson at last accepted the Estimate and declined toublic stand behind the Israelis. '

NAcy and bailUaxKt Tfcr AnaVllearl- 1 iwwmrtMay

*rW en-at sonar*iaiuMi.-'Tutaiy aadHaira-* rrocjtoJn nieai jil> lhrSee Ileum ioacrviria* of JI April 1'is; trrSNovrmhcr

I visa

k Smth.DC II2 thrregller eord as Helms1J|



unc. four day* before ihe outbreak of war. llclms receivedfollowing day ihe DCI sunima

ticir conversation lor Ihe President. The lime for decision had come.

and Tel Aviv would almost surely decide loove sooner, largely because of American pressures forlost Israel the advantage ofoss she svould pay for in casualFvenone notably less shrill than Td Aviv'sestimate oliyi, Tsi.icl wanted nothing from the United Statesdiplomalic support, measures to ensure that the Soviel Union beof the conflict,onunuaiion of weapons shipments alreadyeni* of the pastours. Helms concluded for"can be interpreted as an ominous portent considciingmilitary capability to strike with link or no wantinghree days later, ihe Israeli attack caught (he entireby surprise,isdon Johnson was able to lell thewith some smugness lhat he had been expectingelms subsequently conceded,airly tidy package.

Shortly0unc. Helms was roused frum bed by the news thai the Fighting in the Middle East had at last begun. By mid-morning he was on Ihe Hill, briefing the leadership and allaying Congressional anxieties about Israeli capabililics. In ibc following days the DCI was heavily engaged in Middle Eastern affairs. Sensing that CIA had to speakingle voice in ihis rapidly moving situation, he designated ONF analyst John F. Devlin as the Agency's focal point lor most mailers relating io the war (except thai Angleton. in this as in everything else,to report dircclly and exclusivelyheo ensure maximum cnniiitl. Helms also had all communications routed through his own office, effectively cutting hit DDP. Desmond FiuCriald. out of the action- Helms ranery light opcrauon" ihroughoui thenod. one subordinate has recalled."

For his daily meetings at ihe White House, Helmsontinual updaiing of the Agency's intelligence and frequent conferences with Angleton and other key subordinate* Helms also directed the writing and distribution of numerous situation repot is. intelligence memorandums, and Special National Intelligence EstimatesThe Office of Current Intelligence alone pioduccd live separate situation reports each day. with additional spot reports and special annexes asor did Helms hesitate to Inter-*enc personally in the preparation of these asscssrocals. For example, he found portionsaper on Soviet attitudes and intenlions in the Middle

"Helms, xtrirajaeiiini 'f Oeon si.rt.e-pnl

I.riMm st HaSiaii. urprK".

acdMioeld1 Dnen*ei IUS4.

Onune, as the fighting began to wind down. Helmsomewhat different type of memorandum lo theLooking toward the postwar situation in the Middle East, he prctposcd thai the United Slates Gosertirnetat "cease referring to The Arabs"ublic premounccmcnts. using instead lhe letm Egyptian, Jordanian. Moroccan. Algenan.ncoutaging local nationalism, he explained, "may serve in some measure to distract ibe Arab peoples from their focus on the Arab world and no Arab vs.his, in turn, mighi reduce Nasser's influence In Ihc region While no cs'idence suggests thai anything came of this ptoposal. it docs demon urate an increasingly confident Helms, willing to enter into poJicymaking realms nca-niallyCl't range of responiiBtliiies "

For the Johnson administration, the "moment of truih" of ihe crisis arrived onune. Early thaiessage from Soviet premier Aleksei Kosygin began coining in to the White House Situalion Room over ihc hot line. If lhe Israelis did not hall their advance across Ihc Golan Heights, the Russian leadet threatened, ihe Soviel Union would take all "necessary actions, includingelms remember* ihe chill that settled over the room "The atmosphere wa* tense The conversation was conducted in the lowestave everbe DCI later recalled.'* Briefly, the senior figures present contemplated the possibilityajor East-Wesi conftoniation. While Johnson momentarily left ihc room. Helms, Defense Secretary Robert McNamaia. and Llewellyn Thompson (ihe American Ambassador lo ihe Soviet Union, who happened lo be in Washington at theiscussed possible Americanne action rapidly itxomrnertded nself to all three Why not dispatch the SUlh Fleet lo the eastern Mediterranean, ihey asked lohnson on his returnignal change in orders would convey American purposcfulnes* io Ihe Soviet* without placing ihc Kremlinosition where reiicut would entail public humiliation Johnson enthusiastically endorsed the gambit, the

Mi uniaailuai. IWaSn to. ta.)

T atkSjaJ-Vinson. TVa* tvtrtdtmy. MkU-IMP


'Helmi. StiTi'i-urnlmn Iih Ok Reo'd. quoted in Donald Net'fir Jtrwwlrm. pp rM-MO. Alio ve Helms Oralpril IWrt.

fleei wjs rcrouied. Moscow received the intended message,oviet-American confronlalion was averted, later that same day.ease-fire,eace of sons reiumcd to the Middle

CIA's performance during Ihese days stands out as one of the Agency's truly impressive successes in an institutional lifespan nowfour decades. "The finest, across-the board execution of our mission atlave seen in my tsventy years with the Central Intelligenceelms wrote to his Deputyew daysihe war'sn matters concerning the likely timing, duration, and outcome nf the fighting. CIA analysis were nearly flawless in theirThey were right in doubting that the Soviets would openly intervene in the conflict and in doubting that the Egyptian* would use chemicaloint of some concern in the days before the fighting broke out. Finally. CIA estimators were ready to stand alone in their judgments if

need he. They not only counseled

also disputed State Department view* un both the liming of

the war and ihe balance of military forces in the Middle East.

In later yeari. Helms would credit the Sis-Day War with drarnaticalty altering his standing in Ihe lohnson White House. The precision andul the Agency's tcpnriing enabled ihe President lo icsisi pressuresore public commitment of American support for Israel. Johnson, Helms would recall, "was enormously relieved to be let off lhat hook.'* For the first lime in his presidency. LBJ realized "thai intelligenceis life, and an important |rolc) at thathis was the first time lhal he was really son of jarred hy the fact that 'those intelligence fellows had some insight lhat these other fellows doni haverom thai time forward Helms regularly joined the President's Tuesday luncheons, where Johnson and his closes! advisers hammered out many of the nation's principal nationalpolicies. As Helms himself has observed, invitation to these informal sessions ushered him Inio llie administration's "magic inner circle.""

CIA achievements during this crisis are all the more sinking in light of Ihe Agency's failure sis. years later to forecast the Yom Kippur war. Of course, the two situations differed in irnportant respects:7 theion for war was Istael's andertain military logic to it. while3 the decision lay wiih Cairo anditicily_rntlitary siandpoinl appearedake little sense

Itrltm. Morauindiim for Uw four la-put. DirecMrv. Helms interview.pril IvftJ


Miiii'mit inelms was able both lo determine precisely what concerned Johnson and to tailor Agency reports io answer lhequestions. Aneleion tcmcml-eis that Helms snccifically asked whether it would no* be wiser lo oualily theiru. When Bsc 1X1 observed,re really ihiowing escrythmg on misngJcion advisedonlye remembers tellingnd) you don'i get Ihc diiect mention of the recipient They begin toundred thoughts raiher than oneccording to Angleton.ccepted thisknow how Dick is: he just wanted to absolutely double check that this represented lhesent the uvseuineniwithout qualifications "

As lor Ihe accuracy of the information il fed Ihe White House,done tts homework well In advance. Neatly iwo deludes afterretired Agency officers still recall the careful cpadework inbefore ihe crisis by Waldo Dubbcrstein of the Office ofwhounning log of the two skies' relative strengthsThai lhe pniKipal officers involved in Middle Eastern allCntchlteld,had long eipericncc in

ihe region undoubtedly helped them lo read the situaliononce lhe crisis hit. CIA was able to move with great speed.May. lot instance, theout two

papers in less lhan fourimilarly, the ONt needed lessay to prodoce and coordinate Ihc keyay paper lhat persuaded Johnson lhat Israel needed no special American assistance.

One pu/rlmg aspcel about the CIA role during these days remains. Numerous Agency paituipanlc including Helms. Angleion. and]-

sets specific in tellitif ihe White House thai the war would lastck_

The end of hoslilittes alter sis days, they remember, gave the Agency an

aura of prescience, and no one was more impressed than Lyndon Johnson,

who then drew Helms into his inner circle. This siory is widely accepted

within the Agency and frequently crops up in discussions of ihe high points

in CIA hisiory.

Bul the documents llii'sc iitTicerstheay ONEnu such precise

prediction Indeed, no such document can be found in any of lhe Agency's records. Theohnson Presidential Library in Texas has also been unable ui substantiate this claim, while neither Johnson's me moosational Security Council history drawn up shortly aflei themention any seven day predictionlassified atrticsei^

'AaeVtiWi UiilI

splains holve precistonwas sacrificedocess ol coordination."

Helms believes that the Agency's prediction of seven days wasin itsay paper.Capabilities of Israel and theproducedoordinated effort of the

mil ihe Defense Inielligence Agency. In fac. original

or this paper had said thai Israel would3 days" to break through the Sinai defenses9 days" so reach the canal. These figures, however, did not survive the coordination debate. The finished paperonly ihai ihe Israelis would attain air superiority over the Sinaiours after taking the initiative, or3 days" if the Egyptians struck first, ll then observed that armored forces could breach Egypt'slines in ihe Sinai within "severalt which point they would need time to regroup and resupply before pressing on to Ihe canal.'

Although il is conceivable lhat Helmseven-day predic-tsun to hbnson orally, the former DCI ts emphatic in recalling thai the number was portritten estimate In his recollection. Helms may possibly have confused ihe earlier drafts ol iheay paper wilh the final draft In any case, all of tlx' documentary evidence indicates tliat. contrary to Agency folklore. CIA nescrrecise seven-day prediction for what has smre been catVd Be Si>-Day Wat. It n. rresershciess, clear mat ui pus crius OA provided the President with timely, accurate and etliaorilinarilyintelligence lhal elevated the Agency's and Hclms's stature in ihe lohnson While House almost literally overnight

Of Hclms's role duringberty episode at the height of the war,

said Or thi innming I lunc. iire: ^

iaiiltc tcleplwnc call from the Pentagon war

rc-jiiavy cooimunKaiions ship carrying highlysurveillance geat. was under aiiack in the eastern Mediterranean American fighter aircraft, the caller conUnucd. had been scrambled wilh orders to "shoot to kill" in defense of the vessel The astonished Dl analyst taking the call immediately telayed Ihis information lo the DCI. As the sit uation unfolded, it became evident thai Israeli jet fighiris and tnipcdo boats had launched ihe atlack,adlybertyead and wellundred wounded. Although Israeli authorities in Tel Aviv immediately apologired for the gncsousany informed Americans soon came lo believe thai the assault had been anything hul accidental.


' paper suggested, might hive mistaken the American vessel for the Egyptian transpon "lillight days later, another Intelligence Memorandum concluded that the attack "was not made in malice toward the US and was by mistakeul the cumulative weight of the evidence rapidlythis position, leading the DDO. Admiral Taylor,ile Helms:

To ihus far preseoii the distinct posiibilily thai ihe tuaeks iaew that 'Liocny' might be their target and attacked anyway, either throujh confusion in Command and Control or through deliberate disregard ofon the part of suhurdmales."

Helms played no role in Ihe subsequent hoard of inquiry that looked into the mailer, but eventually concluded thai ihere could be no doubt that the Israelis knew exactly what ihcy were doing in uilacking the Liberty. Why they felt the need lo do so. and who ordered Ibc attack remainHelms to this day cannot answer,

7 war between Israel and its Arab neighbors also presented Helms's CIAleeting opportunity to play the MRustomed role of peacemaker. Ultimately, of course, nothing came of this opportunity, and it joined the lengthy catalogue of Middle East "might-haveutIhey raised such tantalizing possibilities, if onlyoment. CIA efforts should not he entirely dismissed.

In the immediate aftermath of the fighting, lames Angleton found himself increasingly disturbed by the prospect of an endless cycle of war and more war in the Middle East. With this in mind he composed what those who saw ii remember as an eloquent plea for some dramatic move to break through Ihis destructive pattern.lind memorandum for the DCI. Angleton observed that, with the Arab countries prostrate and in disarray, little blocked the Soviel Union from making new incursions into the Middle East The present moment, be urged, offered an unprecedentedto build an anti-Soviet alliance consisting of Israel and some of the conservative Arab states such as Jordan and Saudi Arabia. The whole thing depended upon urgency. Angleton continued, the longer Israelthe territories captured from the Arabs, the less willing Tel Aviv would be to give them

Israeli Aiiack on ihe HSSJ'The Israeli Statement on the Auack on ihr USS17

"AO'iiiul Taylor. DOCI. Mcmerainluni fur ihei inleivii-u. IS4

Chapter 7

Relations Wilh Congress

Robert M. Hathaway

Aension suffuses the relationship between Congress and the CIA. The members ot* the legislative branch, acting in thencapacity, are frequentlyn ihe role of critic or prying interloper Yet. in Kichard Helms's lenureDirector ol Central Intelligence theio perform ihis supcivisory function was heavily constrained by theof Ihe Agency's willingness lo furnish the necessary infurmaiion. In fact. Congress and Ihe CIA each provides services the cither needs to carry oul its tespoosihilities adequate Is Congress needs inielligence from CIA when ii deals with national security issues, while CIA must depend on Congress for statutes and fundsstablish and maintain it. as well as for oversightroiect il from damaging exposure and political dcbalc.

ong lime the relationship between Congress and CIA has been considerably richer and more complicated ihan the common image ofto watd suggests In fact, to focal only on this facet of Congressional Agency ties distorts the dynamics of the relationship dunng Ihe Richaul Helms years. Through Congressional briefings and theof its intelligence, (he CIA enhanced defense and foreign policy debatesegree not even hinted al by the usual connotations ofPartnership as much as suspicion characterized the relationshiplangley and Capitol Hill6

The chronicler ofongressional tiesilemma in thai the routine, orderly functioning of government seldom appears nntcwonhy. Only when controversy rages, when things fail to go according to plan, do outsiders take notice.onsequence, any account of Congressional Agency relations is bound to accent the frictions, ihethe harsh words Io remember (hat behind these disputes oftenutuality of outlook and interests requires an act of will Irom both

Ricliaitt Helms

Yet the years immediately following Richard Hclms's service as Director constitute ihe nadirongressional-Agency relationship that now es lend* well overears.eriodustainedfrom Capitol Hill on ihe assumptions, purposes, and practices that Nad guided CIA since its inception Helms himself laced prolonged legal difficulties after ictiriiig from the Agency, problems which arose fromthat he had deliberately misled the Congress about events thatwhile he was DCI These unpleasant (acts jar disccedantly with the notion Of partnership.

To the tension inherent in Congressional-Agency relations must be added the contradictioo between the Richard Helms widely acclaimed by the Congressmen who supervised CIA affairs, and the Helmstimesfor allowing his organization io befor purposes contrary to legislative desires.

Not is this all. for beneath these crosscurrents more fundamental forces were dramatically altering the American political process in ways that would reshape ihe place intelligence held in American life. Anwar increasinglyew skepticism on the assumptions that had undcrgirded the nation's foreign policies foi two decades and destroyed what hademaikuble national foreign policy consensus. Al the same lime, the American peoplerofound loss uf confidence in their government. Lyndon Johnson's "credibility gap" and the openlhat Richard Nixon evoked from large segments uf the populace were both symptomatic of and conliihulory lo this heightened sense of

CIA. as an instrument of government, suffered from this generalof faith in the country's governing processes. Moreover,ecret organisationociety prizing open access to the levers of power. OA was doubly vnjlricrabie to the suspicionsitizenry oewiy awakened to the dangers of unchecked power The inflated passions of the era made CIA an appealing target for many groups and individuals who came lo see the Agencyuble main of the varied ills they sought lo rectify

Under these circumstances. Richard Helms increasingly foundespecially in his final years as DCI, defending his organization from all manner of Congressionalthoughtful and measured, some based more on fantasy than fact Seldom were Helms's ownor integrity questioned. Indeed, ihe peisisient respect accorded Helms during his tenure as DCI constituted one ol the more remarkable aspects of the growing propensity on Capitol Hill lo challenge iherliticd by his continuing good tcpute. Helms generally succeeded in parrying Congressional assaults on CIA. In reirnsriect we can see lhal his successes

were largely illusory, papering over rather lhan reconciling theinherentreeelianceecret intelligenceEven as Richard Helms left the Agency in3ewcareer, the passions of (he cm were sweeping CIA toward greater turmoil.

Confirmation and Ihr McCarthyA

The Senate thai wasfi so confitm Richard Helm* as ihc new IXT was ensnaredonlroversy more heated than anythe CIA of the precedingears. Arguing that Ihe Agency played an important role in making American foreign policy. Senalur Eugene McCarthyN) hadesolution in6 lhal. afterparliamentary nsndificalions. would have added three membci* of the Foreign Relations Committee io the existing CIA oversight subcommii-lees.'

In May. Senator J. William Fulbright's Foreign Relations Commiliee endorsed the proposalto5 vote Richard ts RussellAI.of both ibe Senate Armed Services Committee and its CIA subcorn-mluee. immediately served nonce thai he resented this implication thai his subcommittee had been derelict in supervising lhe Agency. Russell, whom Timr magazine called (he uncrowned king of Ihc Senate's innerroceeded to mobilize his considerable powets. io beat back this challenge.

Helms* nomination arrived al the Senate at precisely this moment. There was press speculation that the President had lapped Helms as Kabom's successor in ordei to defuse the dispute that McCarthy's resolution had triggered. TheSrof reported thai governmentregarded Helms'* ape-oustrnenimajor step" in easing theWidely respectedhrewd intelligence professional. Helms possessed the stature lo quiet anxiety that the Agency was not adequately supervised. Indirectly referring in (he lightly regarded Raborn. Congressman Mendel Rivers pronounced it "eniirely fitting"areer officer should be appointed DCI House Minority Leader Gerald Ford spoke for the opposition party in commending the Pre.idem for placing direction of lhe CIA in such capable hands.'

wera ihc Scute Ainsn) Soyicci Sa-txxfmiiiec enIntel'n'emc inj an nutated laatil It* Senate Are* foa CIA as-nutM



Senator Richard Ruiiell

Helms breezed through his confirmation hearings before Russell's Armed Services Committee. An Agency record noted thai the Senators present were "most helpful" in posing questions that allosved Helms tothe matters then agitating Congress. Insisting that CIA had no policymaking mlc within the government. Helms denied that Ihe Agency had ever attempted to influence decisions. The CIA. he assured his au dience. merely provided decisionmakers with the intelligence they required

for wive choices. After unanimously approving Hclms's nomination, the committee went into executive sessioneneral briefing on the world situation, particularly the war in Southeast Asia.evealing digression. Senatornouye ID HI) asked Helms about the sire of the Agency's budget. When Kusvel! interrupted to say that ihu touched onbetter lefthe CIA Subcommittee of the Appropriations Committee. Inouye immediately withdrew hisclms's unanimousby the fullew days later effectively derailed McCarthy'sio expand Senate oversight, and the proposal died in committee.

Soon afterwards. George Cory of the legislative Liaison Division of the Office of the General Counsel (OGCIonversation lhal nicely illustrates several facets of the Agency's relationship wiih Congress as Rk-hard Heims assumed command Williamenior staffer On ihr Senate Appropriations Committee, admitted toCary that the Senate had somewhat neglected Ihe intelligence community, adding thai Russell had only recently directed him to become more active iu this area. Cary's inemor.indum further observed: "Wc agreed lhal regardless of the reasons, this new emphasis oo the part of the [CIA] subcommittee members on their rcsponubi lilies concerning the Agencyealthyary reminded WihsIti ftiew. we wclcornrarjlh>tmjjl baafMI I'oc*.lhal il was in the best interests of both the Agency and the Subcommitteeave it heitcr informed on the Agency's programs andAcknowledging ihis, Woodruff observed lhal he found it farto get budgetary information from the CIA than from mosi otherdepartments and agencies *

Woodruff's comments on the Senate's neglect of the inielligence community arc evidence of the independence CIA had enjoyed for nearly two decades. W'hile ihis freedom from rcsiraini reflected Congressional confidence in CIA's leadership, product, and purpose, this largely uncritical confidence alsoood dealhe prevailing foreign policyof these years. The Congress, like the rest of the nation, was grippedet of Cold War assumptions that hardly questioned the need for aa active and relatively unsupervised central intelligence organization Small CIA subcommittees of the Appropriations and Armed Services Committees in each House nominally carried out legislative oversight of the CIA. bul in an aimospheiv of solicitude and camaraderie. Secure in the public'sand exempt from standard disclosure and accounting regulations. Ihe CIA remained remarkably free from tbe checks the legislative branchplaces on operations of the executive.

iflane ISSS. Office at LefiUaoM (Tamil > c1 LawraMr Nwmn

Grncial CNmL Memoianfluin tea "ir IW* Office or (iewn-alRenmU

my. ll. Legislalivr unison division. Office nl General Counsel. Mcii-iin-lum lor die keeiml.ine ol General connwl

Scniot Congressmen andholding (he poi-rital ihairrrjjtj ship* and versing on Ihe Agency oversight uirxonvniiiieci nol onlyin ihi* unique autonomy, bul encouraged it. Ineputy Counsel John Warner, who supersiscd the Agency's day-to-day dealings with Congress,evealing memorandum about this situation The unwillingness of CIA's Senate subcommittees to hold more regular meetings left the Agency cxliemcly vulnerable, Warner wrote. Over the past eight years, he cnnlinucd. fewer than fourear had been called Often only lour Senators participated in these meetings, since the two Senate CIA subcommittees met jointly and had anmeinbeiship. Moreover, thete had notull-fledged budget presentation to these two Senate0 yean.airwould he that the Subcommittee has heard the Agency on budget matters for no mure than an average of one hour each yeai.ajority of the yeais there has beendiscussion of the budget by the Agency with thearner concluded that his memorandum was1 rut circulation. "If this infoimation were available to critics of the current Subcommitteee cautioned, no doubt thinking of McCarthy. Fulbright. and then supporters on the Foreign Relations Cornmittce. "obviously it would pmvule them with sluingn ti April. Warner and Helms met io discuss the implications of thisbul agreed to take no further steps at the moment less than three months later, Helms replaced Raborn as Director.

Warner's memorandum, like Gary's record of his conversation wilh Woodruff, makes it clear that Ihe Agency stood ready lo provide itswbcomrniiiecsrank accounting of its activities Indeed, inyears CIA had usually initialed briefings for its Senate subcommiuees. To ihe degree lhat Congressional supervision of CIA wu lacking, this reflected the delibeiate choice of the oversight subcommittees. lather Ihan any reluctance on the Agency's part Hclms's predecessors, and Helms himself following his confirmation, consistently maintained that Congress was entitled to know as much about Agency affairs as the members thought necessary io carry out 'heir responsibilities

Having said this, however, successive Directors invariablyingle qualification that, in effect, withdrew much of what ihey hadgranted CIA could provide only that inielligence which lay within ihe requesting committee's jurisdiction Given the DCI's legal obligation to protect Agency sources and methods, this caveat hardly appearedhul us impact was sweeping. Except for the four oversightmod members and committees ot Congtcss were severely limited in the amount and types of intelligence ihey could get from CIA. Substantive information might he passed on; operational or organizational

'John Sief iilauieMr ii-ouwilum (orK. While. fjevuOsi

Difciun Compoolk'.ft. Ollict olaine Cnunwl kniinl-


information, virtually never.

I "here was often no clear agreement alxxii precisely -hat lay itiihin the junsdktiorts of ipecifkppeal* to Senator Russellelicited an csircmely nnnow definition of what information CIA should convey to these other cottuniiiecs Frustration at being cut out in this lashion had prompted McCarthy's resolution0 Whenonatters. DCI* before Helms had consistently tcplied lhat jurisdiction was an issue lor Congressional decision, and that the* would he Imppy to rcpottny committee as Congress directed

Since theseractices usually met with acceptance or only pertunctory protc*l. Richard Helmselationship with Congress thai was on the whole stable and mutually satisfactory. Nonet he less. McCarthy's challengebhe Congressional old guard's monopoly on access to CIAarbinger of problems that wouldew year* completely alter CIA's relaxed ties to ihc Mill. Russell's easyt McCarthy -which CIA supptjners acclaimed al lhehave been unfortunate, for it helped Agency backer* cotnplacenily ignote the un-deilying currents thai were sweeping CIA towuid disaster.

Senator Russell's Oversight

Within weeks of assuming the difectorsbip. Helms got himselfitualion lhatrief moment thieaiencd to overturn the equanimity marking Congressional-Agency ties. Onuly I'Mb an editorial in the St Louis ClobeOemoerai had applauded the Senate's decision to bury Ihc McCarthy resolution. In passing, it had also characicrircd Fulbrighl a*escriptionhich Ihe Senator and many of his IricndsHelms, as part of the Agency's program lo foster healthy iclations with ihc press,etter to thetsing thcii stand on the McCarthy proposal Hut when the paper published his letter onuly, one could interpret Helm*'* cooimem* a* endorsing tbe eniirc editorial,its characienraiion of Fulbrighl. The Senate reacted indignantly, and Fulbrighl spoke of ihc need to "leach lhe new Director some properohntaunch Agency supporter, noted Ihai heregretted Helms'* letter and called upon the DCI lo offer Fulbrighl full apologies. Majority leader Mike Mansfield pronounced himself "moreittle surprised that the silent service' ha* seen fit io write to thehink thisanor which must he hrougiii io ihc attcn-lion of Mr. Helms, so that this will notabit with him "*

Mansfield need noi have feared lhal. The surprised DCI called anmeeting of hi* chiefho counseled Helm* to admit his mislakc promptly and apologue to the Senatot. The DCI did exactlv


Riihtni! Helms

iii.'. telephoning itm only Fulhright Im; also Mansfield, Stennis, and other ranking Senninrs of both political parties. Onuly he appeared before liilbrighi's eonimittec to offer further mea culpas. Finally, he calledl-i.r pu: II. "lo evpbmn him andend my apologiesnyight have causedpology and ready admission of eiror placated Senators wlw were not accustomed to hearing from Ihe Director of Cenual Inielligence. The slorm dissipated as quickly as il had arisen. Wiihin days the entire affair was forgone n. except perhaps by the DCI. who seems lo have taken to heart the advice proffered by Korlh Carolina Senator Sam lirvm:ope ihai out of this matter will come an appreciation by the Director of ihe CIA of the gtcai trulh that men rarely regrel saying too liiile.""

Recollection of his narrow escape undoubtedly lay behind Hclms'sew months later to remove the legislative liaison function from the Office of the General Counsel, where it had usually resided since the Agency's founding, and to establish an independent Office of Legislative Counsel (Ol-C>eparate component in the Director's Office.'" In one sense, thection simply acknowledged Ihe importance Congressional relations had assumed over the years. Hy iheupervising these tics hadull-time job. and lolin Warner, who served as both Deputy General Counsel and Legislative Counsel, wasspread loo thin.

Bui the DCCs move accomplished something else as well. By eliminating the General Counsel from the chain of command. Helms brought legislative mailers more directly under his own purview This reflected his conviction that Congressional relalions were one of the DCI's personal responsibilities, since Ihey often required close judgment calls that couldajor bearing on the Agency's well-being. For similarHelms instructed Warner, who left his position as Deputy General Counsel to head live new OI.C. in attend the DCI's stall" meetings each morning. Including Warner in the small number of tegular morningparticipants was an unmistakable sign of how important Richard Helms considered relations with Congress, ll may be lhal thisegacy of ihe St. Louis Globe-Democratmall matter in itself, ihenonethelessasting impression on Helms and hisjudging from its prominence in iheir recollcciions years later.

Helms demonstrated the importance he assigned Congressionalin other ways as well. For instance, he insisted on appearing himself whenever possible before Congressional committees requesting an Agency briefing, even if he did little more than sit to one side while One of hi* specialists testifiedechnical matter. In Hclms's mind his personal par-ticipution accomplished two purposes. First, it massaged political egos hy

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recognizing Hut most Congressmen expected the head of an agency or dcparimeniersonally cater to them Second, in thi* way lhe DCI could momiot ihc flow of mloriuboo lo ihcask he considered esseMial for iruiir.iaimng control over lhe Agency's most valuable commodity

Ai times Helms worried lhat (he current subcommittee system, which excluded inosl Congressmen from substantive contacts wiih Ihc Agency, might eventually undermine ihe generally favorable relationship with lhe Hill itut Raborn had bequeathed him. On one occasion the DCI went to Senator Russell and suggested that,reventive measure, ihe Agency seel" oul contactsider spcciruin of the Senate. Russell's reaction caught the Director by surprise. "He looked me right in Ihe eye and his eyeittle bilelmsHe said. 'If you feel anylo go around and lalk to other Senator* about the Agency'sertainly cantu. Mr Director Rut I'll tell youill withdraw my hand and my support from youi affairs.""

Russell's fierce opposition to what in retrospectound ptopnsul reflected his conviction lhat Agency affairs were luo important and too sensitive to risk divulging to moreandful of hi* mo*lSenatorial colleague* Conservative andifelong bachelor with somewhat asceticaid-svorking master of legislative detail, the wiclder of extraordinary powerower-consciousRichard lirev.inl Russell was by llie mid-IWUs universally recognized as the CIA's special guardian in the Congress The Georgia lawmaker viewed the CIA as an agency one bad to takeertain degree of trust, even if Ihis meant il thereby escaped the thorough scrutiny riremaUy accorded agencies of ihc executive branch. Congressional supervision was lo be minimal,lo CIA secrets, closely guarded. Reflecting this caution, Russell never calleil as many briefings of lhe combined Senate oversight subcommittees a* Agency officer* would have preferred. Helms "alwaysillingness, an eagerrteu really, lo come as often and maybe more often than the committee scheduledilliam Dardeii one ot Russell's senior aides, lias remembered. Hut the Senator never wanted to go into administrative details; he "didn't sec himself as anor wa* he likely in permit other* io assume this role CIA would one day find thai this patcrrulism earned liabilities as well as advantages.

Of course, much of Russell's reluctanceide herd on CIA arose lioin his confidence tn Helms. The Senator and the DCI appear to havean understanding based on mutual trust and respect. Il wasusinesslike relationship ratherarm one. neither manarticularly effusive personality. Darden has testified that, although

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Willi.tin Ilinli'ii by Hubert M llxliasvay. lapr irsiudin|i. VVjJiiri jtitn UC. !1

Russell generally kept executive branch officials' ai arm's length, ihe Senator admired and liked Helms, For his pan. Helms found Russell "an extraordinaryl all the Congressmen andealt wiih over the years, by uil odds the inosl impressive was Senator Richard Russell. He was, as they say In theiant in Iheany years later, the retired DCI wouldpecific bit of advice Russell had given him. "Mre relates the Senator saying.hink lhat you've got lo be very careful notel into affairs that don't concern you Moreave had real trouble in this town by gettingin things ihat really arrnT then business lhan for any other single reasonnownhcrir.i: ihe incident. Helms adds:hougbi ii was the besi piece ofvet hadaven't rurgotten

Again and again Russell mobilized his immense power on Capitol Hill to shield CIA ftom inquiringthose of his Senatorial colleagues. On one occasion Wisconsin Senator William Proxnurc asked Helms to testify on the Soviet economy before lhe joint Economic Committee, which Ptoxmue chaired Helms consulted Russell about theand received instructions io returnroxmirc and "say you'veihis wiih me andould prefer you didn't do it" And that. Helms relates, "was ihe end ol lhe mailerold Senator Proxmire this he just son of waved his hands and that was tbe end of theOn another occasion. Helms was disturbed by iwo very senior Senators' public comments about American satellite capabilities Rather lhan appioach the offending legislaiorv himself, the DCI asked Russell lo take up the mailer withingle word from ihe Georgian. Helms realized, would carry far more weight than the most earnest remonstrancesirector of Centtal Intelligence.

Helms valued his telaiionihip with the powerful Georgiandiligently to maintain ihe trust Russell reposed in ihe Agency.he took great cate to sec that CIA maintained its credibility asurganrrationolicymaking role, for the samehe jealously guarded his reputation on Capitol Hill forAbove all else, he has said.eveled widi the Congress. Ithat theyight iotraightbservers on thethis attitude and came to rely on the DCI for an impartialof iherom his vantage point within the SenateCommittee. Darden remember* that Helmsood jobthe appearance of trying to influence Congressional decisionssomething should or shouldn't he done and giving mc theat least of just saying 'here is Ihe information we havei we're nolio tell you wliai that should lead you to9 conversation

"IbU: Helmiumt -ill he nialica, *ud curniully ire tan* ihiattui; uk (on. kxtrd up by ok siUV-Wr-wrnr' idler.

with in Agency officer Senator Stuart Symington made this same point by rxaiung Hclms's practice of "stacking lo the facts in briefings and not in dulging in speculation."'*

Vietnam was somethingouchstone in Ihis icspecl. As the war increasingly cameivide the nation, the DCI recognized the dangers of appearing toarticular viewpoint Ii became obviouselms "thai, il inieUigencc was to have any standing in ihe Congress, it had lo have the support, as intelligence, of both sides of the aisleidn'i know any way to dn this except lo make the teporls as objective and my testimony as objectiveas able to dolthough llie DCI remembersthis stance did not always endear him lo the White House, testimony from antiwar Senators such as William Fulhnght and Albert Gore lhal Helms was ihe only member of Ihe adminlstraiion who gave Ihcm an honest picture of conditions in Vietnam rcbulied charges lhal CIA had he-come captive to the prevailing policies Representative George Mahon spoke for many of his colleagues when he told Helms upon the DCI's retirement thatustave notan in government who In my judgment has been more objective, more fiercely nonpartisan, more absolutely inclined to be perfectly frank with the Congress than you have been. You have just called it at you have seen it. aad we have com pleie and unci confidence in you.""

Of eourse, the candor lor which Helms frequently received plaudits possessed strict limits, reflecting both ihe wishes of the White House and Hclms's own predilections and background in the Directorate of Plansixon, for instance, in9 directed thai CIA write no letters lo the Hill on subslaniive mattcis. Furthermore, oral briefings were lo he us "unspecific" asui these instructions merely reinforced Hclms's own instincts. John Warner bas spokenertain conflict within the DCI. between his training and experience in DDP. where security and secrecy amounted at times lo an obsession, and his realization thaities to Congress depended upon mutual trustillingness to be candid with individuals outside the intelligence profession Helms "was in constant tug witharner has said "

Ri.. llclms inirrvlcw by Knlieri M. Haitiaway. tape recoiiling.* (lieii'after eiicil asanlen liurivitw.ctoberaury. Jr. Icpslalivt Counter. Xlcmounduua tm thttay IW. Otlk*cdUh*toxoids

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oiiccahlc reserve characterized Hclms'swith ihe Hill. The DCI "fell he shnuld provide the Congress only whal was absolutelylX"member George Caryid not go up gratuitously und say. 'Hey, you oughl lo know about so-and-so.'" Helmsomcwhal standoffish approach to most Congressmen. Cary continues He "didn't gel buekly-buddy. if you will, wish ihe run-of-iric-rnill members of Congress. Some people kind of work the Congress. as we say, regardless of who it is. Helms didn'i play (hatharacterize Helmsindhink that's Hclms'sgency oflicerttathcm similarly recalls that, in the DCI's briefings, llclms thought thai Congressmen and Senators should be given "cserything they really should have known but nothing thai was absolutely irrelevant to what they needed loignificandy.DCI. not his Concessional audience, made this distinction

Ai times ihis circumscribed approach bothered subordinateswith precision On one occasnui. inongressionalon ihe Agency's activities in Laos. Helms insisted on calling all the irregular forcesespite objections from his experts lhal Ihe Mcus were only one of several Montugnard tribal groups working wiih tbe CIA. Gelling caught up in technicalities would only confuse Ins listeners, the DCI ruled Thisuestion of dissembling or being less than honest wiihtrathern later explained "ll was just ihe faciisting each tube separately) was unimpoitant to the purpose of then stripping issues to (licit essentials, in tailoring his intelligence lo his audience, the DCIighl icin on the information flow In Richard Helms, candor and independence coexisted more or lesswith discretion anil the intelligence professional's ingrained caution.

Sirathcrn's story about the Mcos alsoertain disdain Helms may have felt toward legislators whose expertise did not match theirAdvice he offered William Colby ta 1VT0 illustrates this point. Corby was lo testify on the situation in Vietnam before the Senile Foreign Relations Cornnsiticc. and before Colby returned from Saigon for ihe bearings Helms cabled him advice about his opening statement "Your real will base to be aimedretty low level of knowledge and couched in langbage whish is pretty umplr ami straightforwarditng to go right over the heads of most of the Senators in thehe DCI observed. "The names and initials which wc all throw around with great energy arc totally unknown lo these men. souse of whom do not listen very carefully even under the best ofclms's concluding

l_ Caiy. interview ft/laihawjy. upc rsconling. Washington. DC.

1 (hcrcallcraiy uilcr>iew. XIU; Siraihem inlet* J,

advice: "defineUnfy semantics, and generally keep the briefing as simple as possibtr Thi. wa* tioubties* sound counsel, bul pcihaps rot Ihc advice of one who viewed ihc legislator* as genuine partners

bis pari. Melius expected certain dungs from tbe Congress. In lhe lirsl place, he lookedhe chairmen of ihc committees he briefed to take die lead in heading off sensitivespecially inquiries pertaining io Agency sources Without ihe active cooperation of ihcse seniorhe has noicd. "you gelecondly, he expected lhe two Houses to abide by iheir own rules and refrain from insisting that he divulge confidential infcrrtnation except in ihctir oversight surxcmsmiuee* In the absence of such valeeoards he fcaied. the DCI would ncvei tetain secure control of the intelligence il was his duty to protect.

Instimation, ihe keymoothly functioning relationship between CIA and the Congress "is that confidentiality bee was adamant on thi*he Director cannot he sure of confiden liality, then it's going lo be very difficult for him lo play Ihe proper role which (hey expect of hint, which is to confide inongress'slo keep secret* wa* the reverse side of thee fonh-righi with ihc legislators. During the Helms years. Agency officers agreed, membeis of Ihe Congress generally lived up to this responsibilityever had any difficulties withelms recollects.elt safe in sharing wiih them confidences and thing* about highly secret operationsighi not have fell comfortable about under oiher circum-


The system, then, was one of shared responsibilities andery realoncept of partnership linked Congress and lhe CIA. Each performed services and supplied assistance required by the other Richard Helms recognized aod came to depend upon this symbiotic relationship. Speaking of Congressional lies at Iheir best. Helms observes that fiom time loirector "would like to be ableold hands with some .Senators and Congressmen on something that is dxey and lucky aod mightan another occasion, he amplified this idea

(Dfcsplte all thoie who say. "well, you shouldn't talk about secreth Osngrcstional eotnmitteea" and all the purnposiij that follows this, in out kind olf Central taselligcrace atnri need rwdancr ir.nnane from the people In thes to how tat he may go in certain lond* of activity. At least he would like to have some advice When this is noi available through regular hearings, it makes it slightly

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Jiff"milt lot him In last, il make* il very lonely indeed Nolasin (aae on ihr imui ul ihc responsibility oi any of lhr leM uf ii li wa* limplyhoughietter system of relationship' between ihc Agency and ihr Conriest should have been arranged "

What Helim could not know as he irtov-cd into the Dtttxtor 'v Male6 was that ihe ccdlaburative relationship he envisioned would soon be replaced by one much more adversarial in nature Hor (his development Richard Helms bote some responsibility: theeven sonic supporteiv of thesomewhat larger shire, and the changing sircutnslances oftill larger portion.b. CIA basked in the final days of lhe simple, even cozy, relationship with Congress thai bad been the norm for two decades li was, however, aboute rudely swept asidesing tide of suspicion and disillusion.

The Rampant Affair. IM7

A sudden breach ol Agency security put Helms's views on Ihc nature ofongressional tieshe lest inuring ihe second week ol febtuaiy. Agency officers learned that lhe leflwing monthly Ramp,ini MouldubUsh an article documenting CIA financial linksumber of private American organizations, most nolably lhe National Student Association The story broke publicly onebruary amid lurid advenisemeniscase study in the corruption of youthfulhe article itself discussed CIA funding practice* at length and named many recipients of Agency monie* in addition to the National Studentublic reaction was instantaneously and overwhelmingly negative toward CIA. Eighi Democratic Congressmen wrote Presideni lohnson to call for an immediate investigation "at the highest level" mid chatged that the student association subsidy "represents an unconscionable extension of power by an agency of government over instiiuiinns ouistdc lisisclosure of the coven financial ar-tangeineniv. ihey .sdded. "leads us and many others here and abroad tolhal ihe CIA can be ashreat lo American a* lu foreign democratic institutions "n

Forewarned of the impending expose. Helms and other Agency officer* briefed key Members of Congress well in advance of the re vela lion* in the hope of mitigating some of lhe anticipated damage Beginning the day after public disclosure of the story. Helms traveled to Capitol Hill

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Relations With Congers*


sure international student

In its March issue, Rampartswill document how the CIA has infiltrated and subverted the world of American student leaders, over the past fifteen years.

-l has used students to pres-

Mi'lmil Iteliin

on tourall, with Congressional groups, including the over, sight Mitvuen mil lees In each caw he emphasized that none of the programs CIA had financed involved domestic mailers Agency money had been used solely fire international operations to counter Communist front orgam nations No subversion or espionage, he insisted, had been conducted through these aciivitiev Typical of his statements ssas his csplanalion to members of the House Appropriaiioos Committee onebruary, lie didnecessarily believe lhal the CIA should be subsidizing these types of organizations. Helms averred, bul some group or agencyerc is nobody in the United States Government who has the money to take care of this kind of thing, and unless some device is found for doing it. il ends up being done by an organization like thehis then exposed the Agency to charges nl subvening American yuuilt, the DO continued, anger rising. "We have done no such thing. We simply turned money over to them to use lor travel funds and things of this kind and made no effort whatever lo guide that money nor lo (ell ihem how they should run their organization Our hands are lotally clean in this

Hclms's vigorous defense of CIA practices gradually drew supporters to the Agency's side The CIA sulx-ornrnilicc of the House Armed Services Committeeress release commending the Agency and pomirdly stating that CIA would have been derelict in us duty had ii not undertaken such clandestine operations. "Espionage was not involved the survival of freedomhairman Mendel Rivers and ranking minority member William Bites jointlyOP Senate leader Everett Dirksen com plained that the "Roman holiday" of disclosures jeopardized the nation's capacity lo obtain needed intelligence, while Representative Samuel Stratton chasiised his Congressional colleagues for insistingollyanna siance for ihe Unitedorld "all too often peopled by cutthroats and dirtyspecially influential was Senatur Robert Kennedy's statement that the CIA should not be forced to "take the rap" for programs approved by high officials in three administrations."

U'i the initial flurry of critical remarks, Ihe prepondeiancc of Congressional comment voiced approval that the Agency conducted the types nl activities detailed inumber of Congressmen and Senators with whom CIA had had no previous dealings made floor sialc-menis in vuppoit of the Agency. By the end of the year. Legislative

of in iDetest* aad Hiluar) Caanirasilwu Satonflrfiuiieei.el Rfpmrnumvts. is7 Altommmomm tor ihe Iterant,tewary IS*'.slam Cm nl Retards TheW. ISl.

"Sraaiut Kicreiibow ibVfcf. Aa. RiprrwMaUTWfOm't aaost as Aaxbowy Stan lams.7oven Ao'MMIkeJ; Staaior Roarrt Kenas'di's qu<>e'V)iit tmti.Iitihih lame ia

[ul s- (he Soulot had io|uoied Inn llrlms

Counsel Warner fell wfftctcntly sanguine about the enure episode tohis annual renon7 by noting thai the expose had gainedumber ol new supporters who more lhan offset Congressional crilics.

For the moment another danger seemed to have been avertedonger viewpoint, however, we can now see the Rampart* affair as one of theeries of increasingly serious challenges to the way CIA had conducted its business for two decades. Sharp questions had been raised aboul the CIA's legislative authority for engaging in certain activities. The episode prompted renewed grumbling that Congress was not adequatelyof Agency activities and suggestions thai the creationoint oversight committee might be considered again. Concerned lawmakers again raised the old question uf theecret intelligence organization should occupy in an open society. Perhaps most important, the wraps had been taken off some Agency activities, and those who searched for mote revelations found both precedent amihe events ofs Helms ob*et*cd years later, "things raihcr settled down again but never to be precisely the same.""

New Si ruins on the System

rhings were never the same, for7 the emiie Americansccunty process was being shaken by fundamental challenges. The second hall ofitnessed Ihe collapse of Ihe consensus that had underwritten America's Cold War policies for two decades Thelhat had dominated foreign policy debates since ihe end of World War II were called into questionumber of mainrorldAmerica's rapptochement with Ihe Soviet Union,ar-reaching spin in Sino-Soviet relations, many Americans' growing dissatisfaction wiih lhe results ofears of intervcniionism.ofrisingposition to lhe war in Vietnam Increasingly hitler as die decade unfolded, ihis new skepticism in the country frequently pitted Congress against the White House, and by lhe end of the Johnson presidency tics between the two branches ofhad become severely strained The substitution of Richard Nixon for Johnson in9 only exacerbated matters,0 relationstbe ftcsideni and Congress were frostier than at any time in aThis conflict placed CIAenuous position, for it was uniquely vulnerable to Congressional ire. both as an institution closely associated wiih America's Cold War policies, and aa an executive branch agencyin important respects beyond legislative control

' lle.'iiisime IMS*


As the wat in Indochina ground on with no end in sight. Senator I'ulhi ij'ht assumed leadership of those forces in the Congress that calledieatcr voice in overseeing Agency operationswider dissemination of the CIA product Although occasionally invited by Russell to attend the DCI's hriefmgs ol the two Senate CIA luheommit-tces. EuJbright never found these proceedings satisfactory Repeatedly he attempted to have Helms testify before his Foreign Relations Committee, which the Arkansas Senator had turnedrominent forum for those questioning American policy in Southeast Asia Russell, who continued to hack the While House on Vietnam, frequently stepped in to block theserulingommittee was not the proper body to receive such testimony. Helms lncd hi steer clear of this jurisdictionalby pio'essing his willingness lo brief anyone the Senate directed. Esen so. sniping between the Iwo Senators,between those who supported ihe war and those who challengedpoIkics.onstant worry for the Director, who lncd haid to keep the Agency from being caught is the crossfire.

Of course. Congressional pressure for Agcacy informationa backhanded compliment to the integrity and usefulness of the CIA pnsduct.aury, who replaced Warner as Legislative Counselill, ohseived:

Om mayor problems on the Hill may result as much from our successes as our failures: the better wc do our (oh. the pi eater will be Ihe demand fieto our intelligence product, and the greater will be the Congressuinalearn more, and have more lo say. about our coven activines "

Even legislators known for their skepticism about CIA's activities voiced higft regard for the intelligence il dissemi raced,a< the Agency could provide them with the information they needed to fulfill their duties responsibly.

Agency-supplied intelligence on Soviet military capabilities, forproved indispensable lo the legislators during the politically charged annballistic missile (ADM) debate in the. Opponents of the administration's plans lo upgiadc the ABM system looked to the CIA for informalion lo counter Department of Delense claims that ihe Soviet Union'sntercontinental missile gave Iheiist-sinkc capability. According to one account. Henry Kissinger was run-out with Helms for umeinunin; the Pentagon's case; only the uiiervcritionright and other powerful Capitol Hill figures prevented the national security adviser from pressing for ihe DCI'sn September

"OLC Anns.ilttiorCounsel (seeordi.

'Tttninn Isthe Hun K'i" irV SnWvHrlmi tin.lCIA (New YuiLp. Snt-JTO

Rt'ttiliaiu Wiih Convrcst

'uttuighl told John Maury Ihai he hoped he had not pul HelmsiltKult position wiih (he administration by engineering lhe conlroniation wiih ihe Department of Defense Fsdbnght added lhat. il Helm*et got inio iroublc wiih ihc VVhhc House foe icMilying candidly before Congress, he wanicd lo be informed in case he couldear latei. Fulbrighl publicly praised Helms for his performance during ihe ABM controversy, declaring thai ihe DCI's testimony before the Foreign Relations Committee had "inspired in us irusi and confidence" in the Director's "integrity, honesty, andhese were snong words for one decidedlyto the interventionist activities customarily associated with CIA They also pointhenorttenon charactetisitc of the Helms yean,respect for (he DCI even as CIA as an institution came lo hewiih increasing suspicion

Helms'* problems with Kissinger and the Pentagon during the ABM debate reinforced his determination to steer lhe Agency clear of ihe-uf the day. Many years later. Ihc former DCI would relate another episode illustrating litis need to avoid the shoals of partisanship.e recalls. Senator lobn Sherman Cooper wrote lo CIA requesting certain information on Soviet and Chinese missile force* Helms had andrafted and. as was his custom, sent il lo the Hill lorst,-ui rencc before mailing il to Cooper. Helms then continues the story:

The nestrantic telerbease call sayiag Senator Russell wanted ie see me right awayuasaprd ia the ear and went downse Senate. He came ulf the Hoot, and he said, "Don't you everetter tile i'm-mpel nr anybody|iliti.i! Idler, come on the floor of the Senate, wave it, and say. 'I'veetter from Use Director of Central Intelligenceays so-aadnd it will adversely affect Oar debate we re having on the floor tight now.vstter of faei. it may alien the whole budget foi the Defense Department You shouldn't even consider writing tellers like that."

"He was really very shirty aboutelms concludes.earned my lesson lhat documents of that kind could aflrcl debates, could he very important, and that the Director had to be very careful about whom he wrote to and when he did II and so

National Intelligencea similaiMemule, neither Presidents Johnson nor Ninon wanted thesecirculated on the Hill, and when faced wiih Congressional requests

mMwal. Mrtror nKm tor the RnaMScplcrabil

p"Helm " 1turn in Oar Hrt not repeals man) otaiaiU.ffk* ul LegislativecpiciubrtOffice n( I. tip.iin-ei rtcennh.

always assured his Congressional requesters that, since Agency testimony reflected the conic no of lhe NIEs. their actual distribution was

Vietnam, the ABM system, and difference* of opinion over access ioll raised the possibility that Helms might one day find himself squarely in the middleonflict between the White House and Ihe Congress.ember of the executive branch, the CIA hy itsriendly, or ateasonably coopciative. Congress. The Agency could ill afford lo alienate either the While House or Ihc Hill. Balancing the demand* of each was not always easy: occasionally winter luge was required At one point, for instance, lielms directed Maury lo biicf Mendel Rivers on Soviet interest in the Cuban naval base of Cienfucgos. despite instructions from "higher authority" not to do so. Maury urged discretion on the Congressman, remarking lhal should Kissinger find out about the briefing, "wc could really be inecalling these times years later. Helms gently observed that neither lohnson nor Nixon had properly appreciated the difuculiies iheir appoir. tees faced in working snsoothly with the Hill **

The legislators for then pan respected Helms lor his steadfast refusal to pcimit either Presideni to lutn CIA into an advocate for current policies Reactionsurprise White House announcement inetailing changes in the intelligence community and emphasizing the DCI's coordinating responsibilities over the entire community, suggest the extent of their respect Senior members in tbe two House* voiced concern lest this was an attempt to "kick Helms upstairs" and place day-to-day supervision of the Agency in lhe hands of one more suxcptibk to While HouseTheii response lo what they feared might represent an effortrode the CIA's independence and objectivity testifies to ihcir admiration for Helms, an esteem that was largely independcni of their gtowing tendency to challenge the organization he headed.

The "Secret War" in Inn*

On several occasion* the war in Southeast Asia brought tbe Agency problem* that dernorutraied the advantage* of collaborative lies between CIA and Congress. From almost the beginning of Helms's term as DCI. Agency officers worried ahuiii the demands placed upon CIA resources by several large-scale covert operations in Indochina. Inoubling of the Rural Development Cadre (RDC)ey element in the campaign to improve social, medical, and

mbo IM)

'hrha St Maun it, LcEI*1aiivr (SfcimnjnJui- fo> IffU

UlliC* llclnifc itiiciiK" ovtnitK. IMS

economic conditions in the South Vietnamese countryside. Onncielms discussed with the Senate CIA subcommittees the difficulties this expansion would create for the Agency, Russell, observing that these poliiiml action teams had little connection to CIA's intelligence functions butarge drain on the Agency's budget, voiced his hope thai Helms could disengage the Agency from such operations. The DCIlear that this matched his own preferencesonviction held by most members of the foui Congressional vursrornmiltces that the CIA budget should be as small as possible ia order to avoid attracting unwanted attention When Agervey managed programs grew too large and visible, as RDC nowto do. Russell and his colleagues believed that ihe Pentagon should assume responsibility for them, to prevent budgetary and security strains lhat CIA wv. not designed to handle.

Acting on Russell's wishes, Helms met with the director of the Bureau of the Budgetn an unsuccessful effort lohim that some other government agency might heller carry oul the RDC program. Instead. Helms got new White House orders nol only to maintain Ihe cuiicnt level of activities, bul also toillion from Congress to expand Agency RDC opetaliiinv

At ihis poml. (ieorgc Mahon and Carl Hayden. ihe chairmen of the House and Senate Aprxopnatross subcommittees, intervened7 letter io the Bureau of the Budget they pen wed out the difficulties in handling funds for an open programlassified budget item and asked lhat some other method of funding the RDC program be found for thefiscal year. The Bureau of the Budget's reply nnteil while ihewas receiving careful consideration, ihey nevertheless requested the full appropriationsn response. Congress authorized funds for the RDC program for only nine months. Although wiih Senator Russell'sCIA provided some residual support foronths alterunding cuiofl. firm Congressional backing allowed the Agency toa burden that threatened its ability to perform other more important missions. Moreover, il managed this in spite of administration wishes that the Agency continue tunning the RDC program."

Mahon and Russellimilar if less visible role9 in pressing the Pentagon to take over CIA responsibilities for the paramilitary programs in Indochina known as SWITCHBACK and MACSOG In each case the operations' expansion in size had created funding problems for the Agency. And in each case Congressional proddingeluctant Pentagon tu phase CIA out of the programs.

Tjeuils n! ilie i'|>iii>d* mo) he found in Jolio. S. Wiener. Deputy Orntrol <nuivtrl. Dralti IU?ffkc of Oeneril Couatrl Kriimln: atd I" uHsijtned. on. datcil mrmis.iiuluni "RDC und SWITCHBACK fumbni: (Concmuonalrinoiien)"

The Agency's involvcmeni in extensive paramilitary operationsn$ demonstrated hoih the benefits of Congressional support and the problemsingle unsympathetic Congressman could cause. The Agency had been Supplying and directing irregular forces in Laos since the beginning of.n response to stepped-up enemy pressure and the exhaustion of Lao manpower resources. 1

CIA brie led the Senate foreign Relations Curtuniltce on ilsin Laos as earlynd during the ensuing years more thanenators received information on one or more occasions on Agency purtici pation in the Lao paramiliiaiy program. ProbaMy no legislator was more fully conversant with CIA activities in Laos ihan Missouri's Stuari Symington, and lor many years the Senator was the Agency's mustchampion in Lanltan matieis. Clifton Strathern, one of the Agency's mosiOS hands, has recalled ihe preferentialSymington received from DDP operatives in Laos during his several visits there: the Senator "was giventaff bnefing in the same manner thai we would have given the Director, we would have given the chief ol the division, or anybody else. He wis taken upcountry; he visited with Vang I'an |lhe Meohere was never any effort to have anyone withhold ur not discuss some aspect of ouromplete candor was the rule. Headquarters instructed Sirathcm and his colleagues "lo be totally open, frank, and make no effort to withhold any aspect, including even cryptonyms "'

7 field inv prelum of CIA operations. Symingionlo have the Vientiane Chief of Station. Ted Shaeklcy. repon on the war in Laos to the full Semite Armed Services Committee. After (hethe Missouri Democrat approvingly commented ihai the annual budget sot all Laos operations was less than the costingle day's fighting in Vieinara. clearly implying that ihis was ihe way tos American public opinion shifted against the war in Southeast Asia, however. Symington's enthusiasm for CIA activities in Laos waned. By the fall of IW. his requests lo have Helms testify betoreign Relations subconiinillce on the Agency'saos had begun io worry

|Hy midyear even turn Agency supporters had concluded" that the Laos operations had now reached thehere they should

"SiiBihcui inletpril

"Ibid:inner. Ixghlalive Counsel. Mcnioianrtoiti (or ihetTiee of legislative Counsel RcirnH; Warner Interview,uinnl

efense Department responsibility.ussellHelm* lhat he imposed any planave CMA shoulder thedays later. Mahon associated himself vvilh

this position.

The reluctance of Russell and Mahon to sec CIA undertake thesewas only partly out of concern for ihe sire of Iheew and more fundamental worry influencedand ranking members of CIA's subcommittee* As oppositionwar in Indochinarowing number of antiwarto believe lhat the Nixon VVhite House was using the Agency'sauthorities i" hide administration activities in Southeast Asiaeven to circumvent Congressional desires Informed that lhethe controversial paramilitary operations in Laos, andright to examine die Agency or itseveral Congressmenmeasures that would unveil the CIA budget or place restrictionsactivity. For Instance, complaining that the While Houseew and cynical formula furar, out of sight ofand Ihc Americanepresentativeeasure to prohibit the Agency fioenussell and Mahon's*" M'mf" wthe Agency by deluung *orne ot

ibe suspicioas of their antiwar colleagues. For the moment they succeeded, for Badillo'* proposal was quashed

Fulbrighl. on the other hand, was not so easily thwarted. In latee asked Helms to give the Foreign Relationspecial bnefing on Laos. Since Senator Russell hadonth earlier, the DCI dispatched Jack Maury to consult with John Siennis. who hadRussell as the Agency's principal sponsoi in the Senalc. Maurythai Stcnnis lake the position thai such mailers fell within the jurisdiction of the Armed Services Commillcc. thetcby making ittor CIA to testify. Unpersuaded, Stcnnis declined to blockoue si. Noting that "we Cotnmitiee chairmen don't like to get into arguments with each other on jurisdictionale told Maury that it would be very difficult to defend (he proposition that CIA supported activities in Southeast Asia were none of the Foreign Relations Committee's business."Agency insiders must have compared Sirnms'sunfavorably with the vif^srou* response* they bad come to expect from Russell.

"Unsigned mrmuraaduin. "Cnngre*itonal Attitude Toward CIA I'liarlinj ol Mijor Pammiliiarycptctiilicr IV1I. "OwtttUnuil AV.iiid.i|J.

aury. Ir, t'jislailve Counsel. Memorandum lor ills'. Otitic ol legiitaiivr Counsel Rnutdv

The American-bucked Soulh Vietnamese invasion of Laos in1 precipitated an increasing number of Congressional proposals ihai would have siripped CIA of some of its broad authorities. In addition to Badillo's resolution barring Iheon; most paramilitary activities. Senator George McGovernD)ill that would reveal the Agency's budget figure andeparaie appropriations act lor CIA each year. Symington sought toeiling on all governmentfor intelligence purposes. Failing in this, he got Congress toilludgetary cap for most expenditures in Laos While the measure did nol specifically mention CIA. Langley officials worried lhal iiangerous precedent that could be extended in the future to Agency expenditures elsewhere.

ulhrighi's Foreign Relations Committeeanitized versiontaff report acknowledging Ihe extent of Agencyin Laos. The fact lhal these activities were still in progress made ihis revelation all the more unusual It was at this point thai Senator Symington, who had been briefed on CIA's work in Laos for years, solemnly labeled itecretthrase that Agency officers never forgave. Yet it Sluck, in spite of CIA's effoiis to ridicule the idea lhal it would or could undertake such extensive operations without the approval of.inimum, its four Congressional subcommittees. Most Agency officers found the words of Iowa Senator lack Smith closer io ihe truth: in response to Symington's indignation. Smith warned his colleagues not lo "leave the impression lhat the Senate somehow or other has been helpless in thisL]ct us nol say the Senate has been hoodwinked or leave ihe impression we have been misled and have not known what"

By this lime. CIA supporters on the Hill had concluded lhat the longer the Agency remained involved in Laos, the more likely Congress was to adopt some of the restrictive measures being proposed. CIA was loo important to risk its effectiveness by undertakings of ihis sort. Stennis told Maury. For its own good. CIA had to cxlraci itself from ihe controversial war. Acting on this belief, the Mississippi Senator informed President Nixonetter1 that he was determined that CIA's involvement in Laos should under no circumstances extend beyond thefiscalemorandumew days later by Ihe CIA's Legislative Counsel explained Stcnnis's thinking further:

He said we have trouble enough without this thing That we have morework in providing inielligence and he doesn't Ihink we should be mixedhings that interfere wiih this Said to get some sub-rosa outfit to

"US Congirn. Senate. Committee on Foreignubcommittee or. US Securlit Afrccmcnti andAlsnud. Laos:uitodwashmeiiii. IX" (IPO.enium Int. Smith's fl-aotc in CwvetiivmrfS7

uojtisl ilits bnitu'ih) ihm is what wc were sci up hr. lie said thenutj-suh-ros* nullli lei ihe Pentagon or ihe While Houseub-rma outfit. Hie Agency has In he (fee iu do what is so important lhal isimillirrnec."

DCI llclms largely agreed with Stcnnis's assessrrvrnl nl [he dangers that further Agency involvement in Laos emailed and appreciated the Senator's cllotls In disentangle CIA. At the same time. Stentns's ultimatum to Nison placed thencertain position within theWhite House officials insinuated that Sic on is would not have writtenctici unless pressed to do so by the Agency In conferring with Slennis about this problem. Maury observed thai while ihe DCI wished lo be responsive to ihe policymakers. Helms recognized that he could notto tgnore Congressional sentiments. The Legislative Counsel ihen predicted lhat "we were going toretty rough time tryingdjust to ihe will of Congress and al the same lime follow the directions and desires nf thend warned Stcnnis thai the Agency mighl have lo call on him for assistance.**

Seeking loesponse lo Stenms'sember of Kissinger's NSC stall requested commenis from the Agency. In his reply ofeptemberelms observed that, in light of the Senator's concerns, il would he difficult, if not impossible, for the CIAontinue its activities in Laos "Thoseommittees oo whom we depend for ourns and our protection from damaging public exposure and politicalthe DCI csolarised, "appear firmly committed to ihe proposition thai they cannot support the continued inclusion of fundi in the Agency's budgetos-typcoreover. Helms went on. he ihoughl it "extremely douhilul thai they will long countenance the Agency's conduct of such operations even if the funds were overtly appropriatedine item In ihe Defensehe DCI concluded hit memorandum by warning that the longer CIA stayed in Laos, the more likely it was thai Congress would adopt legislation designed to limn ihe capacity of the Agency, and hence Ihr administration, to undertake covert operationsatcund thes wiih ihe RDC. SWITCHBACK, and MAC-SOG programs. Helms had found Congressional opposition to administrationseful means to persuade the White House soCIA to back out of an operation ihai had grown too unwieldy for Agency resources.

i Uauiy.dai<vi> Coowsf I.or dsr Komi.ffice,ounselnsigned (pnoablr Stainvi.nudum for UK Record, undated i> la. Oltice ol Legislative Coastal Resold* "Uml

*Hnn. Ilirciiui ole! licence MemoanduniHenry A. Kisilnger.he Prrudeiii (or National Secumy Attain,s'plrnihvi lU't bifculire Regiurr Hi tool*.

C.Kigrrwiorul debate over CIA's tote in Lao* produced tome of the vlurprM cntictsin of Agency praeliec* in It* firu quartet centuty ofYet ilillkult innthai Richardeasonably have donevert ihc ndc of abuse thai came CIA'* way. A* he repeatedly polnicd nut. il had been awar" only in llie sense lhal lite Americanihe explicit direction of three "residents and Congressional leaders of both parties bad nol been informed of American policy. Hut ihe Congress certainly bad MM been denied knowledge of Agency operation* in Laos. In conformity with existingIA had assiduously kept do/en* of senior Congressmen and Senator* informed of its activities over ihe years.

By Hie, however, these practice* no longer cominanded the unquestioning support in Congress they once had enjoyed. Legislative Counsel Maury, in his OLC annual reporlxplained lhe mailer. "The Congressional power structure, which hasuarterentury served to shield the Agency fromoon or attack by the rank-and-file membership.tate ofe wrote Russell and Rivers were dead, other longtime Agencyncludingahon,lcnder, and Ldwatd Hubert, were in iheir seventiesven eighties.

One need not go far down the seniority li*ts of the conuniltees over which these men preside (Maury continued) to find member* of substantiallytempermcni (vie] and outlook They include men who have over the yean become increasingly sirspicaous or realms of use secn-tisr manner ta which the Agency merugbt conusance*ad their ranks are being pxvsodacalli remfurced by newly elected youngerany of ihesc leel Dial because of tie incteaiingly important rote of the Agency in providingrucial policy decisions its information and itshould be more bmnilly accessible |oc| to llie legislative Branch, ami some of them appear lu have been infected by the ami-establishment and aiMi-Agcncy campaigns of (he "Newaced with trie resultingur aging and harassed protector* and benefactor* on ahe HNT canget be expected to head ibe old line*

The death of Richard Rus*ell in1 fobbed the old system of perhaps its leading defender and irduccd the obstacles confronting shove who wouldew. more egalitarian order in the Senate. Russellthe siaiure and Ihe power to suppress incipient rebellion among ihc younger Senalors who sought to overturn (lie seniority system and the formerly unchallengeable authority of committee chairmen Bul John Stennis. hu successor as head of Aimed Services,either (he respect nor the clout Russell had wielded, and ultimately proved unable to block the demands for Congressional reform that would dilute his authority and restrict bis ability to shield the CIA as Russell hail done Moreover. Russell's passing suddenly made the, personal animosity between Senators

Symington und Stenms something more lhanrivate matter. Many Agency oflicei* came to believeindictive Symington sought tohis rival by promoting the idea thai Siennis's Armed Services Committee was irresponsibly las in supervising Agency operations in Southeast Asia.

More than this, however, the increasingly virulent relations between the executive and the legislative branches of the government, in large measure stimulated by disagreement over the war in Southeast Asia,lo the Agency's problems with its Laos operations. Many of the limitations on Agency activities that Congtess proposed arose nol from un-happiness with CIA per se. butidespread sense lhal the legislative branch must teasseii its voice in the conduct of national security policy Restrictions placed on CIA1 and later often had the broader purpose nf limiting ihc adminislration's freedom of action in Southeast Asia; ihey were aimed at CIA only insofar as the Agency had been used to circumvent Congressional desires. In this important sense. Richard Helms foundand his agency in the midstonstitutional controversy over the rightful division of powers in foreign affaire. CIA wasawn in this far larger snuggle.

Helms appreciated that this placed his organization in danger and moved to proiect lhe Agency from Congressional sniping. He and his OLC officers frequently reminded the oversight subcommittees of CIA'sdesire for tegular meetings. He enlistedenry JacksonA)iess first Russell and later Stcnnis for more formal and structured con-lac's with CIA's Congressional supervisors. Under Helms's dircciion OLCrogram to contact all freshmen Senators and Congressmen, and from lime to time Helms met with his Legislative Counsel to select key lawmakers lhal OLC should target for special attention.

But the Congressional old guard remained largely impervious to the need for making concessions to the more demanding mood prevaleni among the younger Members of Congress.teimis did notingle formal meeting of Ihe Armed Services/CIA subcommittee; the Appropriations subcommittee met only once. Matters in the House were no belter When Louisiana's Hdward Itcbcrt succeeded Mendel Risers as bead of ihe Armed Services OA subcommittee on the latter's deathne of his first actions was to announce Ihe dissolution of the oversightMaury finally confessedanking Senate staffer that the DCI felt most uncomfortable because he believed lhal Fulbright's Foreign Relations Committee was better informed of Agency affairs than Ihe CIA's own subcommittees wctc. The situalion invited disaster, which, in Ihe form of exhaustive Congressional investigation, was not long in coming.trange twist of irony, the Agency's supporlets brought it nearly as much grief as its detractors.

On the in ol (he Slorm

s hard Helms prepared in3tep down aflcr sitalf years us DCI. he left for hisroubled, yei surprisingly favorable relationship wilh Capitol Hill. Congressional respect for the Agency's inielligence product bad never stood higher By pushing for wldci dis seminal ion of CIA studies and estimates, the legislators wereacknowledging how central to then own responsibilities the Agency had become Faced with incredibly cornplcs issues often involving arcane or technical matters, the lawmakers increasingly turned to CIAfor help in soilingelter of conflKling or indecipherableNowhere was this continued reliance on the Agency more concretely demonstrated than in2teaiy. fot the Senate would nevei have lattfied ihe accord if the legislators had not beenlhat CIA could delect any significant Soviet violations. As Ihesecurity came more and more to rely on ihe latest in technological wizardry, Congress was increasingly persuaded of ihe ciucial importance of the intelligence professional.

At the same lime andd Congress that convened in3 was, in comparison to the Congressonsidetably more outspoken in its demands on the CIA. which now included access to inielligence information, disclosure of Agency budget figuics. re strict iocs on CIA covert action authorities, and more rigorous legislative oversight Reflecting these changed conditions. Legislative Counsel Maury noted in his year-end report2 lhat "even our staunch friends are leaning increasinglyarrowot the Agency's mission, particularly where paramilitary and political operations are concerned."

Congressional concern over "executive cncroachmeni" plated anburden on Agency managers. So. too, did persislenl rcpoits linking CIA to the Watergate break-in. Finally, fiaitier Congressional Inhibitions that had disthe leaking of sensitive Agency information appeared to have eroded. Although these developments had not created serious problems (or Helms, (hey wereource of concern CIA could now expect us critics to scire on any inielligence failures or operational blunders in waysecade earlier.

Maury's recommendations for suitable defensive measuresthe limited range of options Agency officials believed open to them Although warning lhal CIA would probably have tst give tactical ground to forestall restrictive legislation. Maury held thai in the mam. "wc must rely on the prolctsionalism of our operations, oo the integrity of our product, and on our resrioniivcnes* to tbe legitimate interests and demands of both the Legislative and the Lseeutive Branches to sec us through |ihis| patch of political turbulence.""

aury,e|iiluive Cnvaiiclloiilfl>ingoi. Direem uf Omuli;

Maury'* prcsctipiion. which implied thai CIA could do Utile more than batten down Ihe hatchc* uniil the currcm squall* blew nvet.ertain failure of imagination thai badly served theelm*'sicer* seemave gauged ihcirrimarily in terms of dissuading Congress from passing harmful legislation This was an important (ask, to be sure, and by ibis yardstick OLC succeeded in maintaining reasonably cordial Congressional-Agency lie* But thiswiih legislation may have rendered themensitive to tbeof the relationship, to the shadowy but important shift In mood and expectations (hat would propel the Agency into an unwanted limelight only months after Hclmi's departure Ceitainly neilhei Helms nor his senior lieutenants appreciated the extent to which the old methods and the old rules no longer applied.

Similariy. Ihcii principal response to Symington's allegationssecret war" in Ian*eeply felt sense of having been betrayedrusted friend. Attacked from souarter. Agency officer*withdrew, slippingiege mentality that did more lo iat-flame than to assuage Congressional cruses. Moreover, this defensive,reaction precluded any real examination of the complaints being lodged against CIA. Yei without an understanding of the reasons behind Ihe aiiacks on CTA, Agency officers could do link lo avert lite cataclysmic rupture in Congressional-Agency ties that Ihe legislative investigationsroduced.

Could Richard Helm* have preventedrauma? Probably not. The outsidere simply too many, the confluence of forcesdown on CIA too powerful. Helms had the misfortune to head the Agency justew mood of skepticism and sclf-asscrtivcnes* swept over Congress The dissolution of the foreign policy consensu* that had shielded CIAuarter century combinediberal dosage ol bitterness over Vietnameneralised disillusionment with governmental power to reinforce this less quiescent attitude upon Capitol Hill. As an importantof the orthodoxy now being questioned, lhe CIA naturallynew interest.

The nature nf lhe legislative process often worked to the Agency's disadvantage as well OLC staffer Georgeuture legislative Counsel himself, has observed lhat, because of their limited access toMember* of Ctmgress "don't know enough to ask theonsequence, "it's important for the seniorhe intelligence business lo not only respond to the specific request* that come from lhe Congress, but. if you will, to force-feed the Congress on things lhat ihey ought to knowet as long as oversight ol the Agencya part-time concern, senior members of lhe Armed Services and Appropriation* Commitho sal on the CIA subcommittees weretoo busyevote ihc necessary hours lu Agencys Helms

tcpcitcdly found when lie picsscd for irtorc consultations, il wasn't an absoluteituation, you frequentlyorce your way intoaiy remembers/1

On the other hand. Helms might have mitigated some of the fury of the ^sequent Congressional onslaught. Three remarkably similarlo the DCI. spacedumber of years, suggest one of the problems.fter hearing the DCI hiief the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Representative Harratt O'Huia observed that Hclms's answers had been very sketchy. "Mr.ish to compliment'llara stated,ixture of respect and chagrin "You have been an admirable witness, but you arc leaving us without very muchive years later. Cart Marcs, chief of staff ol the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, echoed O'Hara's continent Helms, heournalist,ood reputation on the Hill for integrity, "but you've got to know whatsknd writingepresentative Lucicn Ncd/i. appointed three years earlier toevitalized Armed Services CIA subcommittee,eeting with Helms where he had told the DCI: "You've been very cooperative in answering my Questions The trouble is I'm not sure I'm asking the right qucstmm.""

Here. then, is the famous Helmseluctance to reveal mute than was absolulely necessary.lose-lipped approach may have been understandable, even laudatoryCI; it noneiheless impeded communication and lefl many interlocutors discontented. When combined with the legislative branch's institutional constraints and explicitfrom Russell. Rivers, and others that limited Agency visibility, theconsequence was that most Members of Congress got remarkabiy Utile reliable information about Agency purposes and achievements

esult, many members of the Congressersonal respect for Helmsissatisfaction with the overall state of legislative oversight ofhone conversation between Maury and Senator Symington in2 nicely QlDStnres this meshing of sentiments Symington was calling to inquire about rumors lhat Nixon had dismissed Helms as DCI. Remarking that Hclms's departure would distress him greatly, ihe Missouri Senator then launchedonologue on ihenature of Congressional supervision of Ihe CIA. According lo Maury's notes. Symington declared that "the only reason this situation had been toleratedbecause of the respect which the Congress had for Mr Helms, who had always been completely ihe soul of honor' when he

'Cary inters lew.eptrrntow IM)

'd DCI HnFi' f.Kifn Arrant Comiuntr.ronunytnii'y.agislatlvr Crmniel. Memcandum for Ihe St..AprilOtherinn-elertiglil nr Overtoil. Cintgnrss andnurtlireoceOuAri fet luulhtriirr I*tt .uMiOINIKli

appeared before Congressional commillcc* and whose intelligencehad pioved I'ai more accurate lhan those of othci Cinveinmentymington concluded by obseiving if Helms left the Agency, "it willot of things aroundrie Senator's woids constitutedribute to Richard Helms and an ominous warning for the future

Helmsan of the system who took charge of CIA just as the old rules governing CIA's relations with Congress were collapsing. Ills were the year* of the gathering storm, and he left just before the deluge. Confronted with increasing resiivcncssrowing Congressional predisposition to challenge the CIA, Helms made concessions as he thought appropriate. His years a* DO were considerably more open than those of any of his predecessors. Yet in retrospect we cart see lhal hisweie piecemeal and often lacked ihc support or understanding of CIA's legislative sponsors. They failed to placate the Agency's detractors because they did not address the fundamental concerns underlying their criticisms.

That ihey failed to do so leads us buck to the ciMilradictions- that mark Richard Helms'* management of the CIA-Congressional relationship.6 andelms succeeded inough equilibrium in that relationship. His contemporaries, including manyol Agency activities, generally applauded the DCI loteasonably satisfactory partnership between two institutions whosecontains inherent tensions. Yet while Helms managed lu contain the pressures threatening to destroy this uneasy balance, he and his Agency proved unable to relieve or divert them. As it turned out, both Helms and his successors were severely wounded by the eventual explosion.

'aury Ii. Legislative Counsel. Memorandum fur lhe Record. IKcgMalivc Counsel Record*

Chapter 8


Russell Jack Smith

The break-in ai Democratic campaign chairman Lawrence O'Brien's office in ihc Watergate complex on ihe nigh!2 has been so thoroughly chronicled lhal il would he idleccosini il in all ils sorry detail Suffice il lo say. ihe ramifications of Ibis "ihiid-riiehich eventually led lo lhe unprecedented: of the Presideni of ihe United Slates, also embroiled Richard Helms and may base led to hisnlike Nixon's, however, Helms's dismissal was not Iheof his or his Agency's involvement in the Watergate mess, bulmay nave been influenced by his resolute refusal lo permit ihe White House io use CIA a* an instrument in us elaborate coverup of ihe crime

CIA's conneith Watergate was through two retired fturnerJames McCoid and E. Howard Hum. McCord, who had retired inas one of lhe five burglars arrested on Hut) eventful nighthen material found on the menonncciion with Hunt. Director of Security Howard Osborn notified Helms uf this development At hisune morning staff meeting. Helms noted McCord's arrest and lhe possible implication of Hunt, and advised those present that their response to any question regarding the two should be "limitedtale -ment lhat they are former employees who retired"'

This statement was perfectly true, but later investigation revealed thai after retirement Hunt had used his lormer Agency employment to obtain minor assistance with marginally or totally illegal activities on behalf of Ihe White House. Inhe White House had hired Huntsecurity consultant" mid member of lhe so-called Plumber's Croup to as--isi In plugging leaks ol national securityroblem lhalngrossed much of official Washington Concernigh patch following news stones accurately detailing CS tactics and positions in SALT talks, followed by The New Ynrt Timet' publication of the


Richurd Helm*

Pentagon Papers The Nixon While (louse respondedharacteristic mixture of paranoia and deviously aggressive luetics Spurred by the mieri-sity of this high-level conecin. as well as lhe DCI's statutoryfor protecting intelligence sources and methods. Helmsumber of stepsighten securily.jit of this ongoing effort, heforetailed sludy of leaks to the press thai had occurredNixon's administration

Given thi- background, there appeared to be nothing sinister in lhe1 telephone call from top Niton aide John Hhrlichnian to Helms's Deputy Director. Gen Robert Cushman. USMC. requesting minoron "security miners lor Howardfter all.nd the DCI were also interested in proicciing classified material Accordingly. CIA authorized this assistance. Hunt proceeded io exploit this nairow opening to obtain other assistance, but eventually went too far. At Helms'* direction, onll lunher assistance was eul off'

Before lhe cutoff, however. Helms had reluctantly approved, and the Agency had compliedhite House requestrepare aprotik of Daniel bllsbefg. the former RAND employee identified as the man who had stolen and released (he Pentagonn receiving this request. Helms had remonstrated wiih While House staffei David Young, stressing CIA's reluctance lorofileS citizen. Nevertheless, Young ai last persuaded him on the grounds thai this was consonant with his responsibility for piotcciing sources andhis decision was peihaps more instrumental lhan any other in sustaining (he cloud of suspicion lhal hung ovei Ihe question of CIA's involvement in Watergaie. Although Rllsberg's profile had no connection wiih the2 Watergate break-in, Ihc Agency's involvement wiih Ellsbcrgto many thai CIA was capable of undertaking illegal actions against US citizen*.

Howard Hunt was the connection between Daniel bllsberg and Watergate. Unknown to Helms and CIA, Hunt's cither activities on behalf of the While Houseange of dirty tncks againsl Nixon's Democratic opponent* in2 election These included the bugging and break-in of the Watergate office of the Democratic Pt lachairman II was Hum who hired the five participants, all but one of whom was an associate from1 aiiemptedon of Cuba's Bay of Pigs, and even provided one of these with cover identification materials

'USoase. SpecialnariligerKr ot the Comminee on Armed

Serines, /inquiry du llie Allt.mJ Insol'fmritIhr CrwnJ tmrttirrnit dfrirri In lhr

naatowaarObtxvrjM Cong. IU1 (Washington. DC: Govern me" lYiMing Office.frsl as House. grier. Mcirv-rirdum loi the Kccord.

'Richard Helm- tcMiihuny define ihfl Senate .Select Committee on I'rciirkntinl<

borrowed from CIA. Hunt moni-toted tbe operationootcl loom across ihe street, andJames McCord was captured inside lha Watergate office building. Ins pockcisheck from Hun'

the trail led from Hunt

to the CIA. Numerousfollowed the events of the

Watergate break-in so many and

so thoroughly repoiled that, for

most Americans. "Watergate" has

come to mean the Congressional

and judicial inquiries raihcr than the

office complex or the events that

look place there. None of thesehas ever found that

CIAs involvement went beyond the

minimal support provided Hum;

nevertheless, the cloud of suspicion

has clung tenaciously and may

never completely dissipate.

onsiderable extent this is because of the Nixon White House's

repeated efforts lo involve CIA in the subsequent coverup. Although Helms

and CIA resisted these efforts, the White House campaign was so

prolonged and many faceted that investigators have found it difficult to

track down and resolve each pan of the story.

The White House's campaign beganeek after the herak-in Onohn Fhrlichman summoned Helms and bis newlyDeputy Director. Ll. Gen Vrmon Walters. USA, to his office. Unknown In Helms. Ihe reason for ihe meeting was Ihai, in investigating the bieak-in, the FBI had stumbled on some Nixon campaign conlnbulion checks muted through Mexico. As the White House tapes would laierNixon that morning had directed his other lopBob) Haldeman, to call in Helms and Wallers and tell them to instruct Acting FBI Director L. Patrick Gray to shut off further investigation leadingexico.'


Haldeman began by telling his visitors thai the Watergate incidentot of trouble and that the FBI investigation was leadingl importante asked what CIA's cornice lion washe break-in Helms replied thai there was none. Then turning to General

eill. IIJ

Walters, Haldeman Mid lhal ihe While House though! ihai Walters should tell Patrick Gray that it would not be advantageous in push the inquiry (ur-thet. "especially inelms then told Haldeman that he had sfiotten with Gray ihe day before and had specifically assured him that CIA was aot involved in the Watergate break-in and that none of the FBI'swas touching any coven CIA projects. Vinually ignoringaldeman again addressed Wallers, saying lhal "it had been decided at ihe While House" that FBI's Mexico investigation mighl run into CIA operations there. Helms repeated that CIA was not connected in any way wilh Watergate, but Walters agreed to make the call. Following Ehrlichman's suggestion that he should do thise made anwithin an hour'

After leaving ihe White House, Helms and his newly appointed deputy briefly discussed Walters* forthcoming meeting wilh Gray. Helms advised Walters in go only so far as lo remind FBI's Ailing Director ol the existing "delimitation" agreement between the two agencies that icquited FBI io iKUify CIA if it ran into an Agency operation Ncvenhclcss. al the meeting Wallets mid Gray what Haldeman had asked him to; namely, that any ongoing investigation of the Mexican aspects of Watergate could tcopardifc CIA covert actions in the area Wallers later /unified this oo ihe grounds ihai br "genuinely believed that Haldeman had some informationid not have and agreed in go to Gray and convey the messagead beene apparently did not nonce ihe anomaly thai he. not Helms, was the chosen messenger and evidently did not suspect thai this choice might have been motivated by the fact lhal he. unlike Helms,ixon appointee and therefore more susceptible to While House influence. As he says. "It simply did not occure that the Chief of Stall to the Presiclctii might he asking mc to do something that was illegaln anyafter (his wobbly beginning, Walters responded with resolute iniegtity lo subsequent While House pressure.

Helms and his deputy ctiaitcd only briefly before Wallets lel'l fof his meeting al the FBI. demonstrating fundamentally different assumptions about the occasion. General Walieis. newly arrived in Washington from overseas scivicc and accustomed toartying out oidcis, perceived nu problem in complying with Haldcman's directive. Helms, however, had spcnl most of his career watching the feints and maneuvers of White House aides and by now was in his fourth year of working at close quarters wiih the Nixon White House. He was fully aware of the President's antagonism to CIA. as well asad Khrlichman'i personal antagonism in Helms himself. He had gone to the Haldeman

AOCI.for t* WO. How.*

ilms.(Garden Cny. nyhw. i


meeting with his anlcnrus sensitized, and several aspects ol the encounter had put him on alert. Noting that Walters, the recent Vuon appointee, was the chosen instrument for approaching Cray. Helms understood the Presidentiail well enough to realize that they confidently expected the new boy to carry out While House orders, whereas "outsider" Helms might nol. After all, Wallers owed his job lo them. Even more striking. Acting FBI Director Pat nek Cray had not been invited to the meeting Whs was it necessary. Helms woodercd. to dispatch someone fromespeciallyturn off Gray's investigation? Finally. Helms noted that Haldeman had ignored his assurance, not isnce but three times, that CIA had no involvement with Watergate. Could it be, he wondered, that CIA was being positioned in some kind ot devious White House

All ot ihis was troubling, hut the aspect of2 meeting wilh Haldeman that must disturbed Helms was Ihe suggestion thai the FBI investigation might open up "the Day of Pigshis was an allusion that Helms did not understand.'" and Haldeman later confessed that he did not understand it. either.aised the questionas tolde informed the House Special Suhcommiiiee onhe individual who gase him these instructions was Nison, who lold Haldeman justhe mcl wiih Helms and Wallers. "Tell Ihem it's likely lo Now the whole Bay ofhen Haldeman raised the issue. Helms responded angrily that he was not concerned about the Bay of Pigs, which hadto do with the maiter atut the question wasad that devious, hard nosed White House smell. As Helms later in Id David was thatailure the Agency had,idn'i see any reason to drag it inlo conversations wc were having al theui if Ihe question had no objective meaning, it ooncthelessesire toore spot, lo apply pressure. Helms recognized il for lhal and dc-Krmined to proceed cautiously.

At this poini. Hclms's suspicions were founded on very little. He was reasonably confident that his Agency had no direct involvement wilh fhe Waiergale hreak-in. As he told Patrick Gtay by telephone the day before, when Gray called to ask whether Ihe FBI might be "pokingIAelms had been "talking with hisor the past few days,lthough they knew the people, ihey had no involvement in the Wntetgaicevertheless, Helms had clear proof thai the

iuid Helms, interview by lXivid Pram, leloinon uawKnra. Wi.hincioo. DC. as(hnealtci cited ai Iklm* -iiernew.

ot Nisrwtloaac tape ai owned b* TVaanSfwaKrj*

,kt Srtnr:H ad OV CM |Sr. Sort IM


wo top aide* were exercised ovci ihc IUI investigation of theii aod were trying.ivert it. nut through direci order* lo Patrick Cray butewly appointed officer whom iheyroved io feel tbey could pressure li did not smell tight- Accordingly. Helms advised Walters to go no furihcr in his discussion wiih Cray than to remind him of the mutualI agreement about ihe exchange of information regarding each other's operations.

These suspicions burdened in Hclms's mind over (he next day or so andesolve lo do everything he could to keep his Agency's skirts clear of ihc Watergate Investigation. As he put tt in his instructions to his officers, the goal was lo "distance" CIA as far as possible from the affair and its aflcmuiili What contributed as much as anything to solidify his suspicion was the mounting White House pressure on CIA to pro!eel dvose who had been anested This pressure, once again, was directed not at him but ai General Walters

Onune, ibe Monday immediately following his meeting with Patrick Gray. Wallers was summoned to ihc While House by Counsel lo the President. lohn Dean. Alter checking wiih Fhrliehman lo make sure thai Dean was authorizediscuss the matter with him. Walters complied. Dean reviewed lhe HBI investigation superficially and commented that one working theory was lhal CIA was involved. Wallets responded lhat he had looked Ihotottghly into the mailer over ihe weekend and was certain the Agency had no such connection. In reply. Dean pointed out that lheIhe formei CIA employees, were wobbling, and hinted thai lhe Agency' might be involved without Walters knowingallets noted that tbey could mi implicate the Agency and alio pointed out the limitations on his authority to aa irvdepcrtdenlly.

When Wallers reported back to Helms on this meeting, including his feeling that "some kind ol fishing was going on. and thai be would resign if needhe DCI laid down firm guidelines for his new deputy:

I want it to be clearly understood between us that you aie not to agree to anything lhal will in any way hesmiich thisbin't eaie whether you are prepared locapegoat or anything else, thai Is not the point. The Agencynot the Amiy en Navy or some big institution like lhat II can hurtbadly by having st>mclvndy act improperly who was in the linet jiii you lo acquiescea ungat thing i'ia'esnmeb


In his remarks Helms very firmly let his deputy know that theof his personal honor was notclms's view, the CIA's good nameigher value.

. v?

Dean resumed ihe attack on Walters (he next day by again *ummon ing him tooffice, this time lo suggest thai CIA might provide bail nnxney and *alartcs for thesing covenalter* tespemded byih Helm* lhat indicated that, il CIA did a* Dean suggested, he would first have lo clear It with the oversightin both the Senate and ihef Representative* Walters added that to follow Dean's course of action would serve only to enlarge the problem."

Onune, for the third consecutive day, Dean called in Walters and bluntly lold him that the problem now was how to slop the Milbeyond the five suspects. Walter* repeated that as DDCI he had noauthority to act. and any notion that be could do soelusion Thi* session ended with Dean appearinggree lhat CIAwas unacceptable."

By Ihu time it was abundantly clear to Helms that ihc While House Haldeman. Fhrlichman. andbeen intent Iruin llieon hooking CIA into the Watergate affair, either by getting lhe Agency to admit an involvement it did not have or by ensuing il into blsx'king the train ofncluding the FBIhat followed Helm*more determined than ever to "distance" the Agency from iheHr instructed hi* officer* lhat he wanted "ao freewheeling exposition nf hypotheses or any effort made to conjecture aboutor likely objectives of the Watergateome investigators later interpreted this discretion by the DCI a* an effort to cloak an Agency involvement that did not. in (act. cxi*t.

eriod of time John Dean made no further cfforl to embroil CIA in the Watergate coverup. Acting FBI Director Patrick Gray madedemands that seemede merely those of an officer in hi* position, and perhaps genuinely were so. although at this point neither Helms nor Walter* could he certain lhat he wa* not proceeding undei the influence and direction ol the White House, most notably John Dean Helm* wa* also deeply concerned by signs that FBI ofTiier* of lesser rank wereoimation about lhe case to the press. liven more disturbing was the fact that all of llclins's assurances to Gray seemed to roll like wateruck's back, liven before his telephone conversation with Gray jusi before the meeting wiih Haldemanrlichman. Helms had told theFBI Director that the White House, noi CIA. was ihe place to look for

LmUifar car Kntord. 2S> lot iWI

lrlmvernorMOsmi ft.anciv71WR,

clues regaining ihc Watergate aflali.on't know why Grayelm* later toldton.old him early on back at Ihe lime of the Watergate break-in that those (clients were involved wiih Ehrlichrnan **

I ibJ iel ho*m certain he will tellold him. But lee wane reason, bnraropk wemsed loleH that the Agency wasnatlrr ofoM himelephoneade at Dae time of the breakhank be *a> in LotnL "You'd better Hatch out be cause these fellow* may have mmm coram Oua wiihia* tbe one who had arranged fix the hieing ot lluoaid Hunt.'



Why men Hiil Patrick Gray behave as (hough none ofiatcrucnis io him had ever been made'

In view of Ihcve uncertainties. Helms instructed Walters to rireceexj with due caution in respondingemand thai Gray made in earlyray asked Wallerstatement in writing to the eftccl thul the FBI inscsbgaJion of the two suspects with Mexican connections wasnational security. Withoul this. Gray advised Walters, the FUl would be obliged to proceed with ihe investigation.

Walters went to Patrick Grayuly and presented himnemmandum detailing the entire relationship between CIA and the Wateiguic suspects, as well as ihr two individuals with Mexicanlhat Gray had specifically mentioned. Walters said lhat he could not tell Gray lo cease further investigations on ihe grounds ihai ihcy mighi compromise national security, and still less could he maketatement in writing. Gray said lhal he undcrslond und added thai he had fold Haldeman and FJirlichnun lhat the investigation could not be turned off. He further added that there were leaks on the wibycci coming out of FBI."

Ai Hclms's direction. Walicis relumed loeek lateremorandum containing one further piece of information involving Howard Hunt This had to do with ihe precise assistance that Hunt hadand received in pursuit of his leak-plugging activities, including CIA's decisionnd this assistance when his demands grew excessive. After thanking Walters. Gray said that he fell the Watergate scandal would lead quite high politically, adding that,ecent conversation with the President, he had told Nixon thai both he and Wallers thoughi the President should fire those involved in Ihe covcrup regardless nl iheir status Both Gray and Walters agreed that they would resign their posts if necessary to protect their respective agencies.

By this lime. Helms was persuaded lhal Gray was tiying to do ibc best job he could in the face of persistent pressure from the White House to back off Nonetheless, by Gray's own admission ibc FBI was springing un-characicrisiic leaks. This impelled Helms lo take precautions lo pmleci his officers and any information regarding them while at ihe same lime ai-icnipting lo be as cooperative as possible with the ongoing investigation Therefore, in responding to questions from the iTepartment of Jusine about Ihe Watergate suspects, Helms provided the information requested andthe Attorney General of tbe Agency's full cooperation, whitethe impoitancc of handling the material carefully After staling unequivocally thai CIA had no involvement wilh Watergate, he requested lhal CIA be consulted wiih respect to any use that the Justice Department

DO. SUm.-andom 'or IheWallers, mm. MciomnoUiii for ihe tteeoid.uly

might nuke of Ihc inlotrnatton.'4 During the following months, there were, ai Helms'* direction, fun her exchanges of this soft between CIA and Justicecaution that some investigators subsequently in-inpreied as foot-dragging and indications of guilt

John Dean's last effort to hook the Agency into the case came inhortly aftct Hclms's dismissal Dean requested the new DCI. James Schlesinger. to retrieve from the Justice Depofiment theCIA memorandums that Justice had previously requested.ard in Justice tiles indicating lhat this had been done because these tiuu-iial* were no longer pertinent On Schlcsingcr'sWalters informed Dean that the CIA would nol do this. Such anhe pointed out, would serve only to implicate Ihe Agency. Once again, he repeated that there was no Agency involvement in the case, and anyto force such involvement could prose only harmful to the Unitedorear,haky beginning. Wallers had beenthe guideline* established by Helms and repulsing White Houseto use the Agencyhield against eiposuie Walters' rebuff of Dean was essentially lhe last defensive move In ihe long campaign by Helms to prevent the White House from dragging CIA into the role of an accomplice in coveting up the Watergate break-in.

Iniew, hy2 the Watergate incident no longer involved cither him or CIA. He had made it cleai that any assistance CIA had given Howard Html was provided merely to help staunch Ibeflow of national security information to thee bad repeatedly denied that CIA had any direct connection with the hreak-tn and had lumed aside successive While House attempts to involve lhe Agency in lhe coverup He had done hi* part. and. when he left Ihe country to take up his post a* Ambassador to Tehran, be expected thai new* of any further Watergate developments would reach him only through the pages of the Paris edition of the New York Herald Tribute. Instead, he found himself frequently returning to Congressional hearings in Washington in order to defend boih himself and the CIA from distortion and innuendo


The investigation* had iheir source03 statement by Judge John s. Sirica when he found the six delcndant* guilty of the Watergate break-In Judge Sirica observed lhat he believed there was more

Ttrtrnt. 1X1 VWm.Mn.^i- lm lhr ReenrJ. IS tk-tober

n-wimluo lm ibakd-"ODC1 Snumcnt About ihr Wnx.ii-1J

in he discovered about ihe affair, and he es.pre.sHrd ihe hopeenate investigating committee would be "granted power by Congress broad enough to get to the bottom of ihis

I nsi ofF Ihe mark was Ihe so-called Nedzi cummttiec. ihe House Armed Services Commiilec's Special Subcommittee oniiiied hy Congressman Lucicn R. Nedzi (i)earings inlo thelavolvemcni of the Central Intelligence Agcacy in Ihe Watergate and FJIsbcrg Mailers" began in? Helms was called hack (rum Tehran In testify onay. The committee warned lo know more about ihe Agency's relationship wiih Howard Hunt immediately before the Fllsbcrg-related break-in of Dr Fielding's office and the Watergate break in Helms siicsscd that "iherc ssas never the slightest intimation or indication lhat anything- what Mr. Hunt or anybody else was doing was illegal, improper, nr anythinge was supportedigh-level representative of ihe White House, and up to that lime wc provided hime couldn't hate founds for an appraisal ol Hum. Helms commented: "As farnew, heiraightlorwarceitoinanlk.hink had oulsned views of his own capabilities which didn't match his capabilities.""

Chairman Nedzi found it difficult to understand whyequest to assist Hunt had not immediately disturbed Helms. "Suche nhscrved. should have cieatcd "greater concern on yourelms replied, "When supposedly honorable people ask you to do something, and ihey tell you it is in the national interest, and the While House wants to get it done, and so forth, we are inclined io acquiesce ifan '"

Tlsc discussion Ihen lurncd lo ihe psychological profile thai CIA had prepared on Daniel tllsberg. Since the profile was ultimately intended for Hum's use. the committee thought it likely that Hum himself had made the initial request Helms explained that the request had come from Davidember of Kissinger's staff bul loaned to fchrlichman lor "stoppage of leaks, things uf lhathen Helms learned of ihehe went bask lo Young, saying. "Why would we tsc doing something likeoung replied lhat/*

very much

warned the Agency lo do it, that it had the" highest While. House leveland sohus. Young had imitated the request, and Helms pointed out ihai he had not learned of Hunt's coriocciktn with it until lhat very week."

"Tki iVr- Kir* timet, thriinflf.i. !vr<

"thlUUT. ' p

'Mad. p. JOr

p M.

" Itm Is totally new tiliiHelnu Mlil rneld-

llie committee dwelt at some length on reports thai CIA doctors und Helms himself hud been reluctant ui imdertake Ihe profile Did Ihisindicate awareness that an illegal acliun was involved? 'Ihe commit-ice sermcd piuticularly interested in one sentenceote Helms wrole to jcmmpjny llie profile:o wish to underline thelclms had "ihat osu involvement in this matter should not he levcaled in any contcsi. fmmal or informalid this indicate an awareness onan that an illegal act km) was invoked' Helms answered thai ihe note wasunfortunatelyut lhat what he had in mind al the time was Ihai the doctors were concerned aboutrofile based on so liltlc evidence Helms had told Young this oially heforc sending the note and profile. Idling Young lhat "if he insisted on having ihis, if the White House needed il. we would deliver il. bul we didn't believe ihcy had beenhance toood professionalelms also poinicd out ihaiersonalityecitalan's profile, how he leasts, and things ol this kind Iielicateuite confess Butia hannful area.""

ubsequent discussion as to how Young's request was transmitted and lo what degree CIA recognized lhat the request was improper. Chairmanressed Helms hard, leading Congressman Roh Wilsonomment lhal "we mustense of fairness as far as the apparent invialily of the requests and Ihe triviality of theere in the sameould say if the President warns it. he musihis, in turn, prompted Nedzi to respond thai he had "the highest respect and regard" for the DCI. lhat he was not "enthusiastic of the program here this afternoon atut that "these arc questions ihai are beingnd ihe committee had "to assume the role of devil's ad venule" lest it be open lo the charge of whitewash *

Theubcommittee hearings, which continued intermittently untilerehitewash; they were searching and thorough, and ihey ended by vindicating both Helms and CIA. Nedzidescribed the Agency's responses as "cnlirclynd Congressman Wilson (following Hclms's testimony) commentedhink your Agency was badly abused and yoss as an individual were badlyo this Helms replied.eel that way now.edzi added. "We all feel It""

tlp ae


"itmt. p.l.Jp hiv

Vfatergate The Ervin Committee

The Scnaic Selcci Commutcc on Presidential Campaign Activities began its hearings onJ. under the chairmanship of Senator Sam i. Frvin. JrCl Byhe commKtee had taken tev timony from those convicted of ihe break-tn. Irom lop Presidential aides,osi of lesser personalities Helms was summoned to appearugust. For ihe most pail, ihe committee asked him about the assistance given Howard Hum and the meeting between htm and Ehrlichman. Haldeman. andommittee members also tried lo claufy tesltmony that Helms and Walters had given the Senate Armed Services Committee on2 At one point. Senator Frvin toldhink youagnificent

Senator Howard Bakciice chairman of ihc commillcc.iffeient lack. Along with Minority Counsel Fred I) Thompson, he subjected Helms to very sharp questioning Thompson, who went first, tried lo cast doubt on any suggestion that Haldemanriichman were trying lo use CIAovcrup. Irtsiead, he pressed, given the number of cx-CIA employees involved and the faci thai one of Ihem (Maninei) was stillIA retainer, were not Haldeman and Fhrlrchman justified in then concern about possible CIA involvement?**

Senator Baker look up where Thompson left off, suggesting that the Agency's failure lo act promptly in investigating the circumstances of the Watergate break-in argued for some kind of CIA involvementtime sequences and using telescopic hindsight,as did othcistheminor and unrelated events wjih atotally beyond the imagination of those who had participated in them. For rsample. Baker had gone item by ilem through the materials Howard Hunt had requested from CIA, each time asking Helms to confirm ihc fact. He added CIA's printing and developing of film taken by Huntlhe Ells berg Fielding burglary and CIA's former employment of tbe captured burglars, and then wondered "if lhat doesn't lead lo ihe idea thai when ihesc people arc caught thai somebody would certainly say, well, what was the CIAu reply. Helms pointed out that "there haso have everything run in real lime, as (hough all these things wcie knownherefore, one should have the good sense to know this thing or that thingertain period of timehis was not thee also added thai the identification materials provided Hunt were scarcely useful in the Watergate barat-in

'lhrimit,SSerial' Select Ccaniriiisre onaapaiga ruioum.

Csaag- ht waa. Ream NoiWauwagsaai. DC CPO. IfIfcneafte- inoi* as SenateIrlrminr-il. boi* VIM.rf. n. UII.

Norvc of Ihis de net ted Baker Describing the camera, tape recorder, wis,identification, anil speech alteraiion device ihai CIA had provided Hum as an "elaborate and exoiic spye asked what these were used for. if nol for the Watergate break-in When Helms replied that be did not know. Baker asked why be had not launched an inquiry into it "Youay after this happened, that. your former CIA agent* and one still on the payroll were Involved Did you launch an investigation to see what was goingid you talk to theie people, pkk up the phone and say what in the world is going on?""

Holms pointed out lhal the men in question were in jail, thai an FBI investigation ol the affair was proceeding, and ihai any intervention on his part would have been highly improper. Baker admitted that ihe suspects were indeed in jail, bul nonetheless declared,ad someone on my staff caught rcdhandedeweliy store, let alone the Democratic campaignunchould have jumped up and down and .screamedound oul whato Ihis, Helms .imply replied.ave no reason to question you might have done

ll was clear ihai, despite Baker's expressions of respect for Helms, his suspicions had nol been allayed by the time the hearings camelose. Ai one poini ihe press quoted him as saying,an hear (he animals Clashing around in the junglean't seehen the .Senate Select Committee issued its final report inakereparate section to express his own views, which were hardlyhat underlay Baker's persistent attack?

To some extent, it may haveartisanaseeading Republican Senaior doing his best loepublican President and administration. To some extent, it may also have been an expression ofantagonism lo CIA as an institution, perhaps enhanced by aawareness thai such resentment was sharedignificant portion of both public and press. In addition, it may have arisenenuine lack of understanding on Baker's pan. an unfamiliarity with the complexity of ihe circumstances that daily assault afailuie to perceive Ihe difference in scale and range of responsibility between ihe office and staffS Senaior and the hierarchical chain-of-command structure essential to the CIA. To Baker, ihe selected facis seemed lo form so obvious aTo him, the obscure men who had served under contract for the Bay of Pigs operations and Ihe Cubans kept on minimum retainer to report on Cuban community affairs were "CIAo different from all other agents, ll was inconceivable lo him that Richard Helms did not keepminutely informed of their activities. When Howard Hunt received support from Technical Services Division officers acting on the originalthey had received from DDC1 Robert Cushman. Baker could not believe lhal Helms did not know ol this at once.

Perhaps Baker's antagonism drew on all of these elements. Perhaps there were other sources as well. Helms, however, looking back, has placed the mosi emphasis on Baker's desire to protect the President and the White House staff. "Howard Baker's attitude undoubtedly derived from aofelms has commented. "Bui my impression after mature


"USSenaie. Committeeieign RelaixHK. Hraiingir Aiihiiiri af <ht Cmiral

laieltireiue Ax-it. in rturig"ifd in Ihrillit2

J 'Washuifivn. IX Co'emmem.

reflection is thai, in an clt'orirotect the President Jtid his slaff. he was energetically striving inuilty source elsesshere. The CIA was an attractivem not trying to impugn Senator Baker'shink he found it very hard to cotne tothat the President had behaved so badly

In Ms final report ofhe Senate Sclcvt Ccavtenitiee made several reeomitrervdatiom regarding the Watergate break-in and covemp.ihelhat the appropriate ovrrsighi commit lees of Congress "should more closely supervise the operations ol the intelligence and law cnlorcemcnihat ihe Select Commillce had in mind was that the overnight committees should "continually examine the relations of the Ivdeial law enforcement and inielligence agencies and the Whiteromptly determining "if any revision of taw is necessary relatinghe jurisdiction or activities of these agenciesuing thethat Mates lhal CIA "shall have no police, subpoena, law enforcement powers, or internal securityhe commillce declared lhat it had produced evidence lhat ihe White House had "sought and achieved CIA aid for the Humbert" and "unsuccessfully sought to involve the CIA in the Watergateased on this, the commillce rrcornrnenrJcd"to determine il more explicit statutory language would be useful to restrain the CIA lo its legitimate sphere ol

Helms could lake satisfaction in the finding lhal the White House's allempisrag CIA into the covciup were unsuccessful, hut he was not pleased by ihe Implication that the Agency had gone beyond its "legitimate sphere ofechnically, the charge was concci, but il ignored an underlying dilemma facing every Director uf Central Intelligence. The DCI is charged with responsibility for protecting intelligence sources and nserhods but is enjoined by strict construction of Ihe statute from taking any action within the United Slates to meet lhat responsibility It isto capestI or any other law enforcement institution to be as alert so the sensitivity of CIA "sources andnd as vigilant in protecting them as the Agency itself. Herein lies an unresolved problem lhat Helms on several occasions pointed out lo Congress, requesting relief on behalf of hi* succcsson.

After Ihe Senate Select Committee hearings, followed by the US Supreme Court decision compelling Nixon lo release his tapes, iheimpeachment hearings in the lluuse ludiciary Committee, and the President's resignation inhe press continued itsinto malfeasance within the deposed adminisiraium Inloud of suspicion swirled around CLA. originating wilh the Agency'sthrough Humatergate, but enlarged by rumors that even extended to the charge that CIA was responsible for the assassination of President John I Kennedy

elm', "iki-w-. Small.uae IMS

"Senaie.iimiuii*Hinal Repot.d*


Rcsrncsding lo new charges of illegalord5iimtntssion of disiinguishcd cuiiens. under Ihe chairmanship of Vice President Nelson Rockefeller, whosewasetermine "whclher any domcslic CIA activities exceeded the Agency's statutoryearlyhe US Senateelect committee under ihe chairmanship of Senator Prank ChurchD) "to sonduct an investigation and study of the intelligence activities of ihe Umiedhe Rockefeller Commission issued iis report inhe Church committee inoth invcsiiga-live bodies required Richard Helms to make repeated Inps from his post In Tehran to WashingiiM io testify and defend his stewardship of the Agency during his years a* DCI.

Although Ihc Rockefeller Commission spread its nci wide, covering most of ihc Agency's activitieshis sludy will focus only on lhal pottion of the Commission's sludy lhat dealt with Watergate Ihc Commission directed lis attention on seven Watergate related topics,Irons CIAS suspected operational use of Howard Hunt after hisIn found none! to the Agency's response io post-Watergate investigations. Although lhe Commission absolved CIA of any direct responsibility In tho Watergate affair, it wns critical ol llie Agency's petl'or-mance in several aspects

Assigning most of the blame on the White House staff for ibe CIA's iHvolscnteni in assisting Howard Hum. ihe Commission, nevertheless. cntKired the Agency "for having used insufficient care in controlling the use of Ihe materials ithe Commission also criticized the Agency for havingsychological profile of Daniel Ellsberg: The preparationsychological profile of an American citircn who is not involved in foreign intelligence activities is not within ihe Agency's statutorycknowledging the dilemma lhal requests such as this posed lo ihc Director, confronting him wiih having io choose betweenihe President or complying with his understanding of the Agency's si.itntory limitations, the Commissiontark solution; "atirector may well have to cinclude he has no alternatives but io vubniii his resignation."'1

Having absolved ihc Agency of all responsibility in Hunt's break-in of Di bidding's office, the Commission ncxl addressed White Houseincluding some by Presideni Nixon himself, io obtain and exploit for

p is. "Caws* imMo.>

"CommiwH. pp

'JAW. pp IIS-IWi.

political purposes certain sensitive CIA tiles on Vietnam trom the Kennedy presidency. Although ihe Commission Report noted that Helms was not aware ol the use intended lor these Tiles, and lhal he has insisted that the request came directly to him from the President himself, the Commission, nevertheless, again concluded lhat in this untenable situation Ihe DCI should be prepared lo resign. "The Direcior cannot be expected toirect requesi or ordei from ihet noted, "without beingto resign.""

Here, the Commission noted lhal:

the proper functioning of ihe Agency must depend in large pun on theability, and integrity of its Director. Tlie he; assurance against misuse ol the Agency lies in ihe appointment to that position of persons of such sia-lure, maturity, anil integrity lhal Ihey will he able IO resist outside pressure and importuning. *'

None of the barbs that Helms received during his long gauntlet ofirked him more severely than the implications of this observation. As he said on one occasion.ould like lo know whai these things were lhal were solely my responsibility (hat showsacked in integrity oridn'iargeasn't able to stand up to theertainly, resignation must be recognized as iheirecior has in defending his Agency and his own integrity, bul when one considers the violence thatesignation would do lo the Agency's continuity and orderly administration, it obviously should beonly in extremis. The circumstances that Richard Helms confronted were not of that order.

Finally, turning to the Watergate break-m, the Commission concluded that "there is no evidence either ihai the CIAarticipant in theor execution of the Watergate break-in or thai it had advance knowledge ofevertheless, looking at CIA's response to post-Watergate investigations, the Commission concluded ihai ihe caulionin Helms's efforts to "distance" the Agency from Watergate and White House manipulation "cannot be justified by any requirements forgnoring ihe numerous FBI leaks to Ihe press (admitted by Acting Director Patrickhe Commission criticized CIA for ihis-Slill. Ihe Commission found no evidence thai "officers of the Agency actively joined in the covcrup conspiracy formed by the White House siaff inoreover, except for the suggestion that il


"Richard Helms, iisscrvie-miih.?

"Rockefeller Com mm ion..W


might luivo been beiier lor Helmsesign lhan io comply as far as he did to requests that "did noi on ihcir face seemhe Commission's renon dcall fairly with CIA and Ibe DCI.

The Church Commit lee

The Senate Select Committee To Study Governmental Operations with Respect to Intelligence Activities began hearings under theofiil Church earlyike ihc Rockefeller Commission, il spread its net wide both in scope atid lime, and its demands on Ambassador Helms were heavy Althoughide variety of transgressions since lhe Agency's iiKcptmn. ihe Church committee's final report did not mention Watergate, not did it pursue any ot the lines ofthai previous committers had followed dealing with While House elf on* to manipulate the Agency.

epiiiale statement lo the Chuich committee's final repott, Senator Howard llakrt announced his findings from an investigation, which, he said.ursued lot the most pan independently "

I wish io slate my bcliet thai the suns total of the evidenceot substantiate ibe conclusion lhal (TA peras Involved in (he range of events and cucunistances known as Watergate. While the av-njlablc inlorrna liun leave* nagging questions and coulauu hits and pieces ot intriguing en dencc. fairness dictate* lhat aa as sen mem be made on Ike ban* of the parseni record. An evaluation ol that record co>*rari* ihe cease kaoon ihai ibr CIA. as an assi lut-sn. was not mvolsed ia Ac VVatrntatean,

Although vaguely hedged, this admission from Senator Baker is very close to the vindication that Richaid Helm* had sought both for himself and lor the CIA. Senator Baker's staff had been unable lu unearth anyto comrade Hclms's steadfast insistence lhat neither be not his Agency had in any way been involved with the Watergate break-in

The release ol lhe damaging Nixon tapes4 had revealed how the White Hiuijc hadto draw CIA mm the enverup. It was notowever, that former President Nixon finally gave an account of Watergate lhal both acknowledges that CIA bad ao rote in the break-in and admitsistake to try to use ihe CIA io stop ihe FBI investigation At the time of his famous "smoking gun" conversation with Haldeman onixon writes,

I thought thai ia view of ibe fact that some former CIA operative* bad paflKH*ared in ike Wjetgaac break-in. the CIA wtwM be concerned that the* ciiuuut woald. in lam. reveal other, legitimate operations isd operative>

""Cbuiid srniiinillw.W.

Richanl Helms

and Hut idc Agency would thereforehance io avoid thai1 ihoughi thai would also serve our political intciests flccause it wimiIiI prevent ihe r'Bi In mi going into ureai that would he politically cmhurrassing

Although Nixon concedes lhat asking ihe CIA to intervene wu* an in-excusable error, 'Thaie continues, "was mitigated by the good judgment ol the Director of Central Inielligence. Richard Helms, and his deputy. Vernon Wallers. (who| ignored ihe While House request andlo intervene with the FBI. despite the pressure fiom members of myixon aigues that, because of Ihis and instructions he gave Hiildeman and Ehrlichman later. "No obstruction of justice took placeesull of ihe Juneonversation."'1

For Helms, perhaps the final irony of the whole affair is thisof the DCI's refusaloin in ihe coverup in Nixon's latter-day cllorts to exculpate himself from the charges that forced him to resign from office. Al the end of the day. however. DCI Helms had kepi CIA clear of the coverup. and the false leads ol the Watergate burglary stemming fiom Howard Hum's and James McCord's previous service with CIA, the Cuban connection, and all the rest, eventually turned ome groundless. CIA's hands were clean, as were Richard Hclms's.

iton InYork: Siw> nnd Sctivulcr. I'lvXIJ.

The Dismissal of Richard Helms

Ruiscll Jack Smith

The Presidential election2tunning victory lor Kicli.iid Nixon, an oceanic sweep of all but one state in ilte Union. Immediately tbe media proclaimed theNixon mandate."

Following this smashing success. Nixon resolved to tightencontrol over tbe executive branch by imposing upon the traditional Cahtncihile House super cabinet headed by lour master "counselors" who would each run several depwtmenis from the While House He also determined to sweep out the top kadcrship and replace ii with officers responsive tohe first step in Ihis process was to obtain the resignations of all seniorecision thai eventually reached Richard Helms.

Official Washington quickly became ass are of ihe Presidential call for resignations by top officers, but Richard Helms had no lorcnboii ofFunrvci more, he ordered his DDCL General Walters, not to do so. enhei CIA's leadership had never beenolitical appointment, and Helms did not intend thai it should becomeemocrat. Lyndon Johnson, had appointed him,epublican, Richard Nixon, hud reap-pointed him. Hclms's picdcccssor. John McConc.emocrat. John F. Kennedy If the President chose lo dismiss Richard Helms for whatever reason, tbat was his option, but Helms did not intend to male ii easier for Nixon by resigning

Helms, however, did not feel vulnerable to dismissal. On election day. he had lunched with Presidential Assistant Alexander Haig, who had counseled the DCI to stay on until alter the second Nixon term was well established and then to leaveime of his own choosing. Helms believed thislear indication that Haig. the President's assistant for

tMc. Inwl if lmmFmH(He-

p. m Ikr Mai SVfco XVpi nW Soiifv ftnrWnjIiSe CM IhWw York


inlcmnlional atTairs and While House river seer ol intelligence activities, was mm await of any decision to dismiss him.*

Fifteen days aflcr ihe President had initially icqueiied his topesignations. Helm* received notice that he was to meet with Nixon at Camp David. By this, time, much of the controversy surrounding ihe resignations had died down, and Helms assumed that he was going to discuss Ihe upcoming CIA budget He prepared himself accordingly and onmber fhrw to Camp Davidhile House helicopterrief wail, be was ushered inio ibe Aspen House living room, whcie he found President Nixon by the fireplace, along with Hob Haldeman, whoto take notes.

According to Helms, after assuring him that be appreciated lhe good job he had done as DCI. Nixon observed lhal he was eager lo gel some new ideas and renewed ligure* in his new administration and felt that this was going lo requite some changes. Accordingly, he believed that it was tune for CIA toew Director and wanted Helms'* reaction to this.'

Although laken aback. Helms replied that he well understood (hat he seised ai the Pre ndc nionvenience and thai such changes are to beHe went on to say that it was Agency policy lo retire peoplend Ihai he would soon be reaching that age. The President expressedthat Helms was ttiat old and that CIA hadolicy. To Helms il seemed that Nixon nowfor the first time -tin the fact lhal dismissal would effectively put an end to Helm*'* professional career alt lhat nsotnent. Helms recalls. Nixon seemed mentally to switch gears and suddenly asked whether Helms would like to be ao ambassador.

Again taken aback. Helms replied that be was not at all sure be would like to be an ambassador, adding lhal t( was perhaps time for him to leave Ihc Federal Government and gn on and do something else. When Nixun then asked whether Helms might like to be Ambassador to Moscow, Helms suggested thai the Russians mightather dim view of his presence there.houghtful pause. Nixon agreed andhere Helms would like to go. hypothetically. if he decided he would like to be an ambassador. Realizing that some answer would be desirable, Helms told the Ptesident lhal, if he were to go as an ambassador any place, he would like lo go to Iran. Nixon foundood idea, noting thai heind for loe Farlaod. ibe current Ambassador io Iran He jskcil Helm* to think .ir--j; the possibility and In let *iini knowecided as soon as he could.'

'Bit-hardy John2 thereafter cited a* Helm,by Bios*)


lies record thai, during thisovember tampmeeting.

Helms uigetl Presidentio appoint eiihei Willum Colby ixaramevMHC*


Tne Dismissal af /tkluini Helms

After some desultory further conversation. Richard Helms made his faicwcll and flew back to Washington. He had been taken by surprise, and hu mind was filled with questions. What had changed in Nixon'sofhe four years between reappointing him8 and the de-ciston to dismiss himas ii dissatisfaction with Hefms'sas DCI? Was it an act of vengeance for his refusal to participate in ihe Watergate coverup? Was it personal antagonism, especially in ihe minds of Rhtlichman and Haldeman? Wasall these things in combination nr perhaps something else?

II Nixon had been looking for shortcomings in the performance of Richard Helms and ibc CIA. there was gnst for his mill Nixon had always been critical of CIA estimates, dating back lo the "missile gap"of0 election campaign. Accordingelms. Nixon in Nulinnal Security Council meetings:

would constantly ick on Ihe Agency for not hating properly judged -hai ihr Soviets *eie going to do wiih various kinds ol weaponry. Andhe was being selective, nut he would mate natty reran It about this and say din obviously had to br sharpened up Use Agency had to under Hand it was toetter rob. and so oa.*

In Nixon's mind, the culmination of ihis may have been the SS-9when CIA had challenged the Penlagon's views of the missile's capabilities, which supponcd Defense Secretary Mclvin Laird's claim lhal the Soviets were strivingfirst-strike"claim lhal in turn justified ihe needevelop an ABM system. Niton held that the CIA hade McNamara view" of the Soviet Union, which hereflected an inadequate understanding of Soviet intentions.

Then there was the Vietnam problem, where CIA seemed always lo take ihe pessimistic side of every judgment boaung on the success of US efforts Ihe Agency's clear-cul failure In recognize the importance of Sihanoukvillcupply port for Vietnamese malericlelated failure to appreciate Cambodiaiet Cong sanctuary certainly reflectedin Nixon's eyes. Similarly, the Nixon While llouse believed lhal CIA had underestimated leftist strength in Chile and. despite direct orders from the Prcsidctii. had failedrevent Alicndc's rise lo power.

Another side of Richard HclmsN performance lhat President Nixon may have considered inadequate was his management of inielligenceaffairs. Inhe President had signed an Office of Management and Budget memorandum thai James Schlesingcr had pre pared to strengthen DCI managerial authority oser ihe community. This memorandum conveyed Schlcsinger's view that the several intelligence

'HN Wd Helms. irncrvKuitutri. pm IVH' iMooftcr eiwd as Helms iMxvicw

by smith).

agenciesroup of contending baronies wiih which Helms was either tillable or unwilling lo cope. The Presidential ordei attempted to cor-rcct this situation,ore integrated community, and achievecosts through greater efficiency. Although from CIA's perspective James Schlcsingcr knew little of the realities of power relationships among community agencies and of ihe limitations that this imposed on the DCI, Nixon clearly held Schlesinger and his views in high regard.

With respect to the Watergate affair. Richard Nixon knew that Helms bad flatly refused tohite House ally in dealing with this mess and had skillfully protected CIA from attempts to use it in the coverup. Prom ihc Nixon tapes, it appears lhat early on the President expected Helms tu help rescue lhe White House. "We protected Helms from one hellol ofixon said in approving Ihe scheme to gel the CIAall off ihc FBIt is unclear exactly what Nixon had in mind: the only specific instance of such proteclion that Nixon ever cited was White House assistance in the Agency's effort to prevent publicationumber of passages in Victor Marchetti's book. CM aad ihe Cull of Intelligence. Nixon's remark, nevertheless, seemsenuineof grateful cooperation. Given the mounting anxiety of lhe President and his aides over Ihc Watergate affair, it is not difficult toIheir resentment when CIA's cooperation was nol forthcoming.

Still another question in Hclms's mind following his Camp Davidwith the President was whether personal antagonism hadari in Nixon's decision. Acknowledging lhat Nixon sometimes made "nastyspecially about the estittiaies. Helms was noi convinced that any personal antagonism on Nixon's part had triggered the decision to replace him. Nixon's Iwo top aides, Bob Haldeman and John Ehrlichman. were quite another no man for lihrlichman orelms later recalled.

I mean, they ditto't like lhe appointment in the first place. So there was an clement around Nixon lhat was ccriainlyean, il didn't manifest itself with knives in my back, particularly. But. you know, "this gay's not Ihc man for ii.'"

This perception of Haldeman and lihrlichman is borne out by amade by Henry Kissinger to Daniel Patrick Moynihait,ormer Nixon aide. Inoynihan came lo Washingion onfrom his posi as US Ambassador io New Delhi and had occasion to ask Kissinger, "Why was Helmsissinger replied.idn't do it. The Germans dideyond the sardonic irony ofefugee

TVuim. The Wnn Who Krpi ihtU 'Helms inicoiewby Smith.

osnittan. interview bymiih.3

icinijny referring to tlie two Californium* ashe remarking of truth. Helms himself recallsay or two after his Camp David meeting. Kissinger was sufficiently in the dark about Hclms's dismissal that he asked Helms, 'Whathus, it seem* likely lhat. if anyone besides Nison played an important part in the decision to dismiss Helms, it was Haldeman and Khrlichman.

As it happened. Helms had little time to pondci the reasons for hisew days after his Camp David visit. Haldeman called lo ask whether he had decided to accept the job as Ambassador to Iran. AfterUi scleral days. Helms told Haldeman that he would be pleased to accept ihe post. As he did. he had in mind lhal he had told Nixon at Camp David thai retircmcni on his With birthday, on Wl March, would be in line wilh CIA policy. Although Ihere was no explicit agreement. Helms thought thai he wastay or as DCI untilecember, however. Nixon announced lames Schlcsingcromination as DCI. Helms recalls lhal. when he usked the White House whai had happened to Ihe idea

retiring in March alhe only answer was. "Oh. God. weall abouto what lookedlan fur him to stay on as IX?IfiOth birthday "turned out in rbe bureaucratic hurly-burly to haveThe Senate confirmed James Schlcsingcr as DirectorIntelligence nnnd he was swum into office on

Inimediaiely upon learning of Nixon's choiceew DCI. Helms had telephoned to congratulate Schlcsingcr and lo offer all possibleIn the six weeks between hi* designation in December and hismove into the DCI's office in February, however. Schlcsingcr mri with Helms only twice, both pro forma occasions of aboutinutes each. This seems to haveeliberate decision on Sehlcsinger's pan. one he perhaps felt was consonant with ihe President's desire toresh stan in national intelligence and to restructure the CIA

Aftei Richard Hclms's departure, the Agency encountered roughItime of acute political turbulence, andS CIA hada virtual storm center. Much of the damage that the Agency sustained during this lime stemmed from the flood of sensational disclosure* (hat cast CIAerogatory light. Judging from Helms's sure-footedduring his sn-year ten arc as DCI. ii is reasonable to cone lode that his judgment and experience could have helped the While House toourse thai would limit CIA's losses in security as well as rcpuiaiion. The lurbulent and troubled time thai2 stands in stark contrast to the quiet, professional atmosphere that prevailed in CIA duringhe Richard Helms years. by Bros*

ffe.u'ars-e* 6Un>K

"Hud. "ami

Index A

Adams. Samuel..fricagency for Iniernaiional Development. 78

Aii Force.lessandri.8


orb>is*y. Geneva.Embassy.

Armed Services Committee Special Subcommittee on Intelligence,

nerpy Commission.


Bagley. TciincTit



Basic and (ieographie Intelligence,

Office of1 Dales.ay of

Bombing, US,5



Break , IU.




Biue. williaw.98



Bundy. McCreorgc.

Bureau of (he


Camppiroi. iMi




0 Cary.

hilean auhtary. hi..







ci sun. H7

9 Cute.lifford.olby.



Columbia Broadcasting System. 25

oufirmatio. a.




Cooper, (oho.

6 Counter.




Counter inielligence.


8 Covenovenoven. ISO Coverupntehlield.urrent Intelligence, Office of (OCI).

ushman. firm Kohcn



Day an.




Defease. Assistant Secretary of. for

Interactional Security Affairs.


Defense. Department of. I,

Defense. Secretaryefense Intellieence

irtsca.ivmlormaoun. 65

LTisrotstal. Helms.




Duckett, Curl. 42

Dulles. Allen.


Foreign policy.7

Foreign Relations Committee. Senate.




j TV I

rost. David. Fulbrighl. J..

Geneen. Harold. M

General Counsel. 21

General Counsel. Office of (OGCj.

eneral Motoia,tmbt Drm-nmi. Si Loun.olanofitsyn..

Gray. I. Patrick..

reen Bcrei0

ulf of



9 Fartand.)

I oL-ui Bureau of instigation (FBI).





Firn -stole.

rad.oreign Affair* Coin mi lite. Mouse.



llaldemnn, H. R.alpem.92 Huyden,cbcrt.


Hoovci, I. tdgat. Ill

rli.MiLn 1ii .

- ..


ufV. H> jn




t Hussein.

Inn. Shah




II). .


sraelii (smell. I

action. Henry. IH?


Joint Chief* of S


Judicial} Conuniilet1 Ilfttlsf.

Justice. Department

. yjosygin.


Robert.7 29



1 Middleiddle East


oscow. Ambassador



ahon.ail openinganagement and Budget. Office







McCarthy RevolutioncCone...



Multiple independently targeted re-entry vehicle

Multiple reentry vehicle

Murphy... |


National ParlyS National sCCuiily.,,,



ational Seiuriiyational Security Council. 9.

ational Student5 Nearivision, IMelson.

New Delhi. Ambassador1

'tot limes,



6 Osborn.2

swald. Leeversight.




Palmer. Bruce. 30

d,.I- 1 o,..IK6 Ni









e-ie; ma,i 'N


Pentagonhillips.9 Wans. Deputy Director3



Plans. Directorate


lumber's'oleM. Thomas.olicy,


olicymaking, I,


olitical actionolitical asylum.. IIopular Unity3 Postmasterresident.




Pieiiderf. Daily Brief. 23

Raburn, VAdm. William,




ogers.OLLING5 Rmiow.uial Development Cadre.

uial pacification program.usk. Dean.ussell..



Security. Office.

Select Committee on Presidential Campaign Activities.

Senaor Rcaacw Group. 56


SrGINt 34

elations.Judge War..



Smith. Abbot.9 Smith,



solie. Brace,



aigon Embassy,aigon5

8 Santiago Embassy, S3 Santiago8 Sdilesingct,.

Schneider, Gen..cience and Technology, Directorate

1Secretecurity. Director,


oviet,.ovietoviel Blocoviet Russia

Special Assistant for Vietnam Affairs.

pecial National Intelligence Estimate.

Special Operations0


tciconiuientul lull lime missile.

uic. Assistant Scsrciary nf. lor Not

ouih Atiaa Affairs,


Suae OvtMnraMI.



late. Secretaryrennis..

Stewart.trategic Reiearch, Office2 Strategicffice

trathcM. Clifton R

uanoa.irenpr. fif wet.1 Sucr, ISO



Tapes.aylor. VAdm.

echnical Service*.




ct offensive. 33




Tomk.5 86



Truman. Harry. 50

Tuesday IviKheons..


Hailednited'ruled Press IweeruEioaal.aned Staiei Inielligence

0 US Milllniy Assistance Command.


8dMotrapky. 36


Valcnracla, Hiir. Gen.4

s-amr ran. r' r

Vessey. Gen. John6 VLsua. Bog. Gen6





WalieiS. Ll. Gen. Vernon.


arner.fliren. Chief Justice





ashington foil, lilt vi11ip'nngttawtgaie..



estern HemU(ihcr*0


wcmestmoreland. Gen William

Wheeler. Gen Kark.brtr,s.







dsoo.Cot rani1 Wuaer.r^adtwff.

Yom Kippuroung.


ontinental iialllittc missile.


lciciiiMinrnliiluit. AuimjM Secretaryew

friu jbJ South Auin Affairs.


oi. m

Suit Dep-one-.I.

Stale. Secretary1 SUM. Secretary. ISO SietWh,.

tewart.trategic Research, tWllec2 Siraiegkffice


8 Stratioitrength figures.1 Sue*ymingtonymington..


aylor. Adm.

aylor.echnical Semen..

Tehran. AnNuadurenon AmtsaitadOfel.


ci offensive. 33


Tuneomie.6 Tract I.9 Tiaeke pan mem of.Hack7


ntelligence0 Track21 Track U. US',raek Isincs.2 Truman. Harry. SO Tuesday luncheons..


Uniiedmicdniied Press Iniernaiional.nited Slates Intelligence


US Military Assistance Command.


hotography. 56




Vcssey. Gen. John6



Ll. (Jen Venn*en Venn*

eo Vernon iCSAi. IS9.


tflnr,arren, Chief lattice











Wenciiimtietunil. Gen. William25.

0 Wheefci.hrckr.0 Wheelet.hile House., B, II.











Wimrrt. Col. PaulniidfulT,


Yom Kippuroung,


Richard Helms as IHrcclor of Central InMliiemn

en more mysterious to mostihan CIA7 Time cover siory began, "is its direcior. Rkturd McGarrahn imcmc, controlled, self-cllacing professional who holds one of ihe mnsi delicate and crucial posts inhis volume inI Historical Scries throws new lighlegendai} CIA3 graduate of Williams College wtio servedoreign cc*respondent in Europe he lore Worldelms joined ihe Office erf Strategic Servicesndhe intelligence prrrfcvsiiin until he retiredears later. Based on lull access toCI A's cUssilicd records andexk'nsive interviews with IIcltn* and his Ijeulcnants, this hook offers, an authoriialiw uecouiti of his tenure as DitectorofCenital Intelligence under Iwo presitlcnis. By Incusing on (hose issues and events ihai most demanded Helins's ailcniion. ihe .minorsCI's view of CIA mils las! yearsreeiiiinent Cold War insinimcnt of prc^sderaial power



iiMtagini nf jnMt

Roberl Hathawayndfa M dcgices from Wake

* /H ForcM

Camiimi, Chanel Hill,lter Army service he laugh! ai Middlebury and Barnard colleges before joining ihe CIA Hisloty16 he has been on (he professional staff of the House ot Ke^rircscniJlivev Foreign Affaits Committee His hooks incltidcrv Pamierdiip- Buhivi mlArnennd OM HiiuHn ml the Lairedpecial Retainm World



Knglish lilcralure

Joining iheOince of Strategic. he moved after the war into UV CI A. ss here he bevanve Deputy* fie Intelligenceince retiring4 he las published ihrec novelsell-received volume of memoirs, The Uahl'to" CIA: My Three 'Vrm/Vs with the Agency.

Original document.

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