CIA’s long history of extremely serious abuses

In 1947 President Truman created the Central Intelligence Agency in order to provide HONEST, ACCURATE intelligence about international issues.  He did this because the intelligence agencies that had existed (in the Army, Navy, etc.) provided BIASED information that was largely propaganda serving the selfish interests of those agencies (Army, Navy, etc.).  The new CIA would be HONEST and ACCURATE.

Also, the CIA promptly started producing BIASED information that served its own extremist political positions — and the CIA started conducting military activities (e.g., the 1961 Bay of Pigs attack on Cuba) and secret wars in many countries.  The CIA started interfering with other nations’ internal affairs, perverting their elections, etc., etc., etc.  Also, the CIA arranged for much of its funding to be secretly inserted into other federal agencies’ budgets, so NOT EVEN CONGRESS knew how the CIA was funded or what it was actually doing.


On July 30, 2022, The Progressive reported this:

Another anniversary passed this week as well. July 26 was the seventy-fifth anniversary of President Harry Truman’s signing of the National Security Act, which created the Central Intelligence Agency, or CIA. The CIA announced on its Twitter account earlier this year, “To commemorate our upcoming anniversary, we will share stories of our mission all throughout the year.”

The agency’s initial mandate was to be “a non-military agency that is responsible for the monitoring and reporting of the security of the country and its interests abroad to the President and his team of senior officials.” However, under the leadership of Allen Dulles in the 1950s and 1960s, the CIA’s mission grew and shifted. In a 2020 review of Scott Anderson’s book The Quiet Americans, I noted, “through stubbornness and ideological blindness, the CIA often, as Anderson puts it, ‘managed to snatch moral defeat from the jaws of sure victory, and be forever tarnished.’” The spy agency became known for its use of assassination plots, drones, and torture, all techniques that proved to be both immoral and unsuccessful, as former CIA operative Robert Baer told Ed Rampell in a 2014 interview.

In a somewhat odd coincidence, July 26 was also the anniversary of Truman’s 1948 signing of Executive Order 9981, which desegregated the U.S. military. The CIA remains one of the most segregated of government agencies. As ABC News reported in 2020, “For years, the intelligence community—made up of 17 federal agencies, including the CIA—has had one of the least diverse workforces in government, despite the fact that its mission is to analyze intelligence in dozens of languages and understand the nuances of diverse cultures in order to identify complex threats.” Just two weeks ago, in a little-reported incident, a noose was found near a secret CIA facility in Virginia, prompting director William Burns to issue a statement to employees saying that, “racism and racist symbols would not be tolerated in the agency.” But as former CIA agent Douglas London wrote for the blog Just Security, this may not be easy since “the prevailing atmosphere and culture continues to favor White, Christian men, particularly in the Clandestine Service, and most notably at the higher ranks.” As the Central Intelligence Agency celebrates its seventy-fifth birthday, it still has an organizational culture, as London explains, that “remains steeped in [the] CIA’s past, rather than today’s realities, let alone its future.”


Here are some articles about the CIA’s long history of very serious abuses:


Also, the CIA was prohibited from spying on Americans in the U.S.  But it did not take long for this secretive spy agency to start spying on Americans.  This article explains how the CIA Is Acting Outside the Law to Spy on Americans.  Concerned senators have revealed that the government is using an executive order to bypass privacy protections enacted by Congress.


In 2017 a friend recommended Douglas Valentine’s new book The CIA as Organized Crime.  I have not read the book, but I trust my friend’s judgment, so I’m including this in this blog post about the CIA’s abuses.


This article was posted on Oct. 15, 2021:  The CIA’s illegal plots against Wikileaks and Julian Assange  There should be more sympathy for Assange and the outlet he founded in corporate media.


Democracy Now! posted this on September 28, 2021:  “The Plot to Kill Julian Assange: Report Reveals CIA’s Plan to Kidnap, Assassinate WikiLeaks Founder”


This was posted on December 26, 2020: The CIA Is Running Death Squads in Afghanistan.  Reports of atrocities supported by the American intelligence agency underscore the need to end America’s longest war.


A very knowledgeable friend in Illinois posted this information on April 17, 2021:  U.S. should apologize to Iran for Operation AJAX

With U.S. efforts to re-enter the nuclear deal stymied by relentless fearmongering about Iran, it might be useful for the US to officially apologize to Iran for Operation TP-AJAX. That was the joint US-British led coup that deposed Iran’s legitimate ruler Dr. Mohammed Mosaddeq in August, 1953.

The Brits conceived the coup in 1952 and presented it to ‘Give ‘Em Hell’ Harry Truman, who told the Brits to go to Hell. A year later newbie Prez Ike greenlighted AJAX to allow Britain to grab back its Iranian oil monopoly nationalized by elected Prime Minister Mohammad Mosaddeq. For Ike, it was a chance to make his bones as a bonafide anti communist, due to Mosaddeq’s unwillingness to crush Iranian communist influence.

Leading this first official CIA coup against a foreign leader who wouldn’t do our bidding was TR’s grandson Kermit Roosevelt Jr., following a family tradition of senseless and bellicose militarism. Our hand picked successor was Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi, son of the first Pahlavi monarch Reza Shah Pahlavi. His reluctance and indecision almost wrecked Uncle Sam’s best laid plans. But CIA coup leader Roosevelt, who disobeyed orders to shut it down, had his Iranian operatives, masquerading as commies, shed enough blood to turn the tide against Mosaddeq.

The Shah ruled Iran for another 26 years, with his CIA trained secret police killing many thousands who dared speak out against his tyrannical rule.

The CIA, emboldened by their success, toppled the Guatemalan government a year later and were on a roll till their insane 1961 Bay of Pigs fiasco led us down a torturous path of anti-Cuba machinations which nearly got us all vaporized a year later over Russian missiles there.

The next time someone chirps Iran is our enemy because of the 1979 hostage crisis, tell them about 1953. And while at it, request they support a US apology to Iran for it as well.






About GlenAnderson 1515 Articles
Since the late 1960s Glen Anderson has devoted his life to working as a volunteer for peace, nonviolence, social justice, and progressive political issues. He has worked through many existing organizations and started several. Over the years he has worked especially for such wide-ranging goals as making peace with Vietnam, eliminating nuclear weapons, converting from a military economy to a peacetime economy, abolishing the death penalty, promoting nonviolence at all levels throughout society, and helping people organize and strategize for grassroots movements to solve many kinds of problems. He writes, speaks, and conducts training workshops on a wide variety of topics. Since 1987 he has produced and hosted a one-hour cable TV interview program on many kinds of issues. Since 2017 he has blogged at He lives in Lacey near Olympia WA. You can reach him at (360) 491-9093