Introduction When World War II in Europe finally came to an end on May 7, 1945, anew war was just beginning. The Cold War: denoting the open yet restrictedrivalry that developed between the United States and the Soviet Union andtheir respective allies, a war fought on political, economic, andpropaganda fronts, with limited recourse to weapons, largely because offear of a nuclear holocaust. 1 This term, The Cold War, was first used bypresidential advisor Bernard Baruch during a congressional debate in 1947. Intelligence operations dominating this war have been conducted by theSoviet State Security Service (KGB) and the Central Intelligence Agency(CIA), representing the two power blocs, East and West respectively, thatarose from the aftermath of World War II. Both have conducted a variety ofoperations from large scale military intervention and subversion to covertspying and surveillance missions.
They have known success and failure. TheBay of Pigs debacle was soon followed by Kennedy’s ft handling of the Cubanmissile crisis. The decisions he made were helped immeasurably byintelligence gathered from reconnaissance photos of the high altitude planeU-2. In understanding these agencies today I will show you how theseagencies came about, discuss past and present operations, and talk aboutsome of their tools of the trade. Origin of the CIA and KGB The CIA was a direct result of American intelligence operations duringWorld War II.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt recognized the need tocoordinate intelligence to protect the interests of the United States. In1941, he appointed William J. Donovan to the head of the Office ofStrategic Services (OSS) with headquarters in London. Four departments madeup the OSS: Support, Secretariat, Planning, and Overseas Missions.
Each ofthese departments directed an array of sections known as ‘operationgroups’. This organization had fallen into the disfavor of many involved inthe federal administration at this time. This included the director of theFederal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), J. Edgar Hoover, who did not likecompetition from a rival intelligence organization. With the death ofRoosevelt in April of 1945, the OSS was disbanded under Truman anddepartments were either relocated or completely dissolved.
Sovietintelligence began with the formation of the Cheka, secret police, underFeliks Dzerzhinsky at the time of the revolution. By 1946, this agency hadevolved into the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MVD), and the Ministry ofState Security (MGB) both ruled by Lavrenti Beria. This man was undoubtedlythe most powerful man in the Soviet Union with a vast empire of prisoncamps, and informants to crush any traces of dissent. Of considerableimportance to Beria was the race for the atomic bomb. The Soviet Union andthe United States both plundered the German V-2 rocket sites for materialsand personnel.
In 1946 the MVD was responsible for the rounding up of 6000scientists from the Soviet zone of Germany and taking them and theirdependents to the Soviet Union. 2 The political conflicts of the 1930’s andWorld War II left many educated people with the impression that onlycommunism could combat economic depression and fascism. It was easy forSoviet agents to recruit men who would later rise to positions of powerwith access to sensitive information. ‘Atom spies’ were well positioned tokeep the Soviets informed of every American development on the bomb. Ofconsiderable importance was a man by the name of Klaus Fuchs, a Germancommunist who fled Hitler’s purge and whose ability as a nuclear physicistearned him a place on the Manhattan Project.
Fuchs passed information tothe Soviets beginning in 1941, and was not arrested until 1950. Alsopassing secrets to the Soviets were Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, executed inthe United States in 1953. The latter two were probably among the first whobelieved in nuclear deterrence, whereby neither country would use nuclearweapons because the other would use his in response, therefore there wouldbe no ssible winner. It is generally believed that with such scientists asAndrei Sakharov, the Soviets were capable of working it out for themselveswithout the help of intelligence. (better transition) The National SecurityAct of 1947 gave birth to the CIA, and in 1949 the CIA Act was formallypassed. “The act exempted the CIA from all Federal laws that required thedisclosure of ‘functions, names, official titles, and salaries or number ofpersonnel employed by the agency’.
The director was awarded staggeringpowers, including the right to ‘spend money without regard to theprovisions of law and regulations relating to the expenditure of governmentfunds’. The act also allowed the director to bring in 100 aliens a yearsecretly. “3 The 1949 charter is essentially the same one that the CIA usesto carry out covert operations today. The U-2 Incident In 1953, the CIA contracted Lockheed Aircraft Corporation of Burbank CAto build a plane that would go higher and farther than any yet produced.
Kelly Johnson came up with the design for the U-2, a plane that would flywith a record high ceiling of 90,000 ft. and a range of 4,000 ft. The U-2flights are possibly the greatest triumph achieved by the CIA since itsfounding. This is because of the planes success at evading detection forsuch a long time and the vast amounts of information gathered.
“We’ll neverbe able to match that one. Those flights were intelligence work on a massproduction basis. “4 On the fateful day of May 1, 1960, Gary Powers was sentup in his U-2 over the Soviet Union from the United States Air Force Baseat Peshawar, Pakistan. His mission was to photograph areas of military andeconomic signifigance and record radio transmissions. The plane he flew wasequipped with cameras, radio receivers and tape recorders to accomplishthis mission.
In addition to these devices, the plane was also equippedwith self destruction capabilities to blow up the U-2 if it was forced toland, and a blasting mechanism fitted to the tape recorder to destroy anyevidence of the CIA’s monitoring of radio signals. As his plane flew overthe Soviet Union, the cameras recorded ammunition depots, oil storageinstallations, the number and type of aircraft at military airports, andelectric transmission lines. When the plane did not return to its baseafter a reasonable allowance of time, it was assumed it had crashed forsome reason or another. The circumstances surrounding the crash of theplane Powers flew on this is a still a mystery today, depending on whetheryou believe the Soviets or the Americans. The Soviets claim that “in viewof the fact that this was a case of the deliberate invasion of Sovietairspace with hostile aggressive intent, the Soviet Government gave ordersto shoot down the plane”5, and that they shot it out of the air with anSA-2 missile at 8:53 A.
M. at the altitude of 68,000 ft. The Americansdeclared that the U-2 was disabled by a flameout in its jet engine. Whatever the truth maybe, or combination of truths, the fact remains thatPowers survived the encounter by parachute in the vicinity of Sverdlovsk.
Upon landing, he was apprehended, disarmed, and escorted to the securitypolice by four residents of the small town. The fault of the incident laywith the American administration’s handling of the situation, not with theflight itself. It was assumed that Powers had died in the crash, and thiswas the mistake. The initial story released was not widely reported andonly told of a missing pilot near the Soviet border who’s oxygen equipmentwas out of order. “From an intelligence point of view, the original coverstory seemed to be particularly inept. .
. A cover story has certainrequirements. It must be credible. It must be a story that can bemaintained and it should not have too muchdetail. Anything that’s missing in a cover story can be taken care of bysaying the matter is being investigated.
“6 The further lies the StateDepartment released about the incident only strained U. S. and Sovietrelations. These included reports of an unarmed weather research plane,piloted by a civilian, that had trouble with oxygen equipment going downover the Soviet Union.
Under questioning by the press, Information Officer,Walt Bonney, admitted that the U-2 had cameras aboard, but they were notreconnaissance cameras. Rather, the cameras were “to take cloud cover”. When it became publicly known that Khrushchev had known what had takenplace all along and had known for some years, President Eisenhowerjustified the presence of a spy plane over the Soviet Union with it being”in the interest of the free world. ” Khrushchev saw through the ploy andrevoked his invitation for Eisenhower to visit the Soviet Union for asummit. Bay of Pigs By 1959, Fidel Castro and his rebels were able to establish their ownregime in Cuba. Americans soon became hostile to this new government whenit became apparent that Castro endorsed the Soviets.
He declared hisintentions of supporting guerrilla movements against US backeddictatorships throughout Latin America and seized US assets in Cuba. Healso established friendly relations with the Soviet Union although he wasnot communist. The US recognized this threat to their interests andproceeded to form a special CIA task force that was create an armed forceof exiled Cubans, form a subversive organizations within Cuba, and ifpossible assassinate Castro. The initial plan was to discredit thecharismatic man in front of his nation.
Some ideas that were considered toaccomplish the task were ludicrous in the least. The first was to sprayCuban TV studios with LSD prior to Castro broadcasting a speech in hopes ofhim making a complete fool of himself. The agency had been experimentingwith the acid for some time. However, the idea was quickly abandonedbecause no one could guarantee with any certainty that the drug would havethe desired effect.
Further attempts were stabs at the look of Castrohimself. One idea was to doctor his famous insignia, the cigars he isalways seen with. This idea was discontinued because no one could figureout how to get the cigars to him. From an angle of more a chemical nature,the agency planned at one time to make his beard fall out.
Scientists atthe agency knew that when thallium salts contact skin, they act as adepilatory and make hair fall out. The idea goes further into reasoningthat when Castro aveled he would leave his shoes outside of his hotelbedroom and the salts could be sprinkled in then. This idea becameimpossible when Castro announced that all forthcoming foreign trips were tobe cancelled. With these failures, the US felt that it had no choice but tocontinue with the organization of partisans and help them usurp thedictatorship of Cuba. By the time John F. Kennedy was elected President in1960, the development of the invasion was already in full force.
Eisenhowerhad earmarked $13 million and a force of 1300 men had been assembled. 7Cuban pilots were being trained how to fly B-26 bombers by NationalGuardsmen. The operation was massive, enough so that the public tooknotice. Kennedy was extremely wary of any direct US involvement and setabout a series of compromises for the Cuban exiles. The air cover wasreduced and the landings were shifted from a more favorable site to the Bayof Pigs where it was determined that the landing force could get ashorewith a minimum of naval and air force back up.
Escorted by US navalvessels, the force landed in the Bay of Pigs on April 17, 1961. The sixB-26s assigned to the operation were clearly inadequate and the supportfrom within the country never fully materialized. Completely exposed tocounterattacks of the Cuban air and land forces, the whole invasion forcewas either killed or taken prisoner. When Kennedy’s statement that “thearmed forces of this country would not intervene in any way” was anoutright lie. The exiles uses American equipment. They were trained byAmerican servicemen, and the planes flown were Americans.
The ships thatcarried the men to the invasion were American, with American naval unitsfor support. Americans were killed in operation. When caught in his lie,Kennedy was forced to cover the US by extending the Monroe Doctrine tocover communism. He declared that the US would remain free of all Centraland Latin American affair as long as they were not communist.
This fiascoundoubtedly led to Khrushchev’s belief that he could deploy missiles to hisnewfound ally without any tangible reprisal from the Americans. Practices of Spies Some of the devices used seem to come straight from a James Bond movie. Hollow rings or talcum powder cans with false bottoms were some of theitems used for hiding microfilm. An interesting method involves the use ofa microdot whereby pages of information is reduced to the size of a colonand used in an appropriate place on a document.
The process is reversed forthe extraction of information and the dot is enlarged to display all theinformation. Hiding places for secret packages were imaginative to say theleast and ranged from trees, to ruined walls, to mail boxes. Listeningdevices were not restricted to telephone bugs, and on one occasion therewas a handcarved Great Seal of the United States presented to the USambassador in Moscow by the Soviet Union. It turned out that hidden insidewas a listening device.
Microwave receivers exist all over the world forthe interception of messages, the Soviet embassy in San Francisco has itsown battery of dishes erected on top of its building. In 1978, a Bulgarianexile by the name Georgi Markov who was working for the Radio Free Europewas fatally poisoned with a pellet most likely hidden in an umbrella. Vladimir Kostov was killed under very similar circumstances in 1978, and itis believed that the toxin used was ricin. This is an extremely toxicsubstance derived from castor oil.
Political and intelligence relatedassassinations have abounded in the twentieth century with the advent ofthe Cold War. The public will never know when one of murders takes place byreason of secrecy unless it is a public figure. Conclusion The agencies discussed above are integral to the peace that existstoday. There is no other way in the age we live in today to monitor theenemy and ally alike so as to be able to understand their capabilities andshortcomings without intelligence agencies. The CIA and KGB by themselvescannot assure peace.
With the knowledge supplied by each to its leaders,intelligent decisions can be made in the world’s best interest. Moreover,the status quo and power base remains relatively stable with the East andWest on opposing sides. There can never be true and utterly complete peace,these organizations will continue to exist contrary ignorant ideals of thepublic for peaceful coexistence. 1Encyclopedia Britannia index page 2372KGB/CIA, Jonathon Bloch page 123KGB/CIA, Jonathon Bloch page 214CIA: The Inside Story, Andrew Tully page 1135CIA: The Inside Story, Andrew Tully page 1196General Thomas R.
Phillips, U. S. Army, retired.7Bay of Pigs, Peter Wyden page 59 ??