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THE CIA: More form Russell Bartley

Russ Bartley says: I explicitly make the point that CIA is an instrument of the ExecutiveBranch and not the only one engaged in covert activities abroad. "Byf ocusing on the CIA," I write, "Saunders reinforces the widespread but erroneous perception of the Agency as the engine of covert action rather than the subordinate agent of Executive mandate it has always been. Nor has it been the sole instrument of U.S. covert action around the world, as demonstrated by important aspects of the cultural Cold War omitted from Saunders' account." I have never questioned the need for or legitimacy of intelligence gathering. No nation can responsibly conduct its affairs in the dark. Where things very quickly get murky, however, and where people of good will necessarily become harsh critics of the covert organs of "national security" is in the proactive utilization of intelligence. My article is about a much larger issue, to wit: the manipulation of information in service to a political agenda which in turn serves the interests of particular societal interests rather than society (humanity) as a whole.

Ronald Hilton - 7/23/01