The 1960s

CIA Subsidies to Private Groups (1967)

A - R

Agee, Phil, Jr. "CIA Infiltration of Student Groups: The National Student Association Scandal." Campus Watch, Fall 1991, 12-13.

The CIA-National Student Association relationship provided "a perfect cover for the CIA in its operations abroad. Overseas representatives promoted an anti-communist agenda abroad and collected intelligence for the CIA's in-house operations underway around the world."

Altbach, P.G. "Spies for CIA or Deserving Students?" Christian Century 15 (Mar. 1967): 352-354. [Petersen]

Bierenbaum, William. Something for Everyone Is Not Enough. New York: Random House, 1971.

The author was one of the founders of the National Student Association.

Buhle, Paul. "The CIA and the (Jewish) Liberals." Tikkun 15, no. 3 (May-Jun. 2000): 13-17.

This is a lament about the "corrupting" influence that the cooperation between "Cold War liberals" and the CIA had on Jewish liberal intellectuals of the 1950s and 1960s.

Chafe, William H. Never Stop Running: Allard Lowenstein and the Struggle to Save American Liberalism. New York: Basic Books, 1993.

See Richard Cummings, The Pied Piper: Allard K. Lowenstein and the Liberal Dream (New York: Grove Press, 1985).

Coleman, Peter. The Liberal Conspiracy: The Congress for Cultural Freedom and the Struggle for the Mind of Postwar Europe. New York: Free Press, 1989. London: Collier Macmillan, 1989.

NameBase identifies Peter Coleman as "a former member of the Australian parliament and editor of the Australian journal 'Quadrant,' one of the literary magazines established in the 1950s by the CIA-funded Congress for Cultural Freedom."

For Valcourt, IJI&C 4.1, "the CIA's pronounced ideological bent to the Left during its earliest period, a tendency not altogether eliminated even in contemporary times," has almost been forgotten. This is the "first full description and analysis of the Congress for Cultural Freedom's zesty intellectual and organizational battles." The author's "point that the Congress, despite its CIA funding, did not function as a U.S.-front organization is sustained." Coleman's is a "reasonably balanced analysis."

Watt, I&NS 15.4, p. 162, fn16, does not completely agree, noting that the author's "refusal to look in any detail whatever into the origins of the Congress and at the Soviet cultural offensive in Europe to which it was a reply before 1950, the year of its effective creation, makes it seem a little unbalanced."

Cummings, Richard. The Pied Piper: Allard K. Lowenstein and the Liberal Dream. New York: Grove Press, 1985.

See Hendrik Hertzberg, "The Second Assassination of Allard Lowenstein," New York Review of Books, 10 Oct. 1985, for a review that takes issue with Cummings' linking Lowenstein to the CIA. (Oh, the horror of it all!) See also William H. Chafe, Never Stop Running: Allard Lowenstein and the Struggle to Save American Liberalism (New York: Basic Books, 1993).

Grèmion, Pierre. L'Intelligence de L'Anticommunisme: Le Congrès pour la liberté de la culture à Paris, 1950-1975. Paris: Fayard, 1995.

Kotek, Joël. Tr., Ralph Blumenau. Students and the Cold War. London: Macmillan, 1996. New York: St. Martin's, 1996.

Aldrich, I&NS 18.2/131/fn.2, calls this a "path-breaking work." Paget, I&NS 18.2/159/fn.10, notes that Kotek "describes the ISC [International Student Conference] in 1952 as 'close to bankruptcy', and argues that action by a CIA conduit saved the ISC and COSEC."

Kotek, Joël. "Youth Organizations as a Battlefield in the Cold War." Intelligence and National Security 18, no. 2 (Summer 2003): 168-191.

"[F]rom 1952 onwards large sums of [CIA] money went to organizations that were for the most part progressive and were actually independent, so much so that towards the end of the 1960s they did not hesitate to criticize [U.S.] foreign policy.... The situation was not, however, as paradoxical as it seems; we must remember that the chief objective of the intervention was not to control or intervene in the internal affairs of these organizations, but to break the communist monopoly."

Laville, Helen. "The Committee of Correspondence: CIA Funding of Women's Groups, 1952-1967." Intelligence and National Security 12, no. 1 (Jan. 1997): 104-121.

This is a well-conceived article on a little-researched topic. The author sees CIA financial assistance to the New York-based women's group, the Committee of Correspondence, as part of the Eisenhower administration's effort "to devolve a large part of the responsibility for overseas propaganda on to the private sector." Her conclusion that "the relationship between the government and the Committee was based on shared goals and an understanding by government that the members of the Committee were the experts in the field" is on the mark. The greatest wrong note sounded by Laville is her refusal in the face of all evidence to the contrary to give up on the idea that the CIA in some way "controlled" the Committee's activities.

Laville, Helen, and Hugh Wilford, eds. The US Government, Citizen Groups and the Cold War: The State-Private Network. Studies in Intelligence Series. New York: Routledge, 2006.

The materials included here come from a 2003 conference, "The American State-Private Network in the Cold War," in Birmingham, UK.

Lucas, W. Scott. "Beyond Freedom, Beyond Control: Approaches to Culture and the State-Private Network in the Cold War." Intelligence and National Security 18, no. 2 (Summer 2003): 53-72.

While "the CIA led the implementation of the government's cultural strategy, it was a 'total' strategy which involved all agencies in the Executive.... The operations were part of an integrated strategy.... To put it bluntly, if the US government had not covertly funded the 'private' efforts (or, in some cases, assisted in their funding through foundations...), they would not have existed."

Meyer, Cord. Facing Reality: From World Federalism to the CIA. New York: Harper & Row, 1980. 2d ed. Washington, DC: University Press of America, 1982.

Clark comment: Meyer's autobiography covers from the author's undergraduate years at Yale through 26 years with the CIA. Among other assignments, Meyer headed the CIA's International Organizations Division and (from 1962) the Covert Action Staff. It was in this position that Meyer's name became well known because of the Ramparts revelations in 1967 concerning CIA funding for the National Student Association. In 1973, Meyer became chief of station in London. He retired from the CIA at the end of 1977. Because of the positions he held and his close association with the use of covert political action as a weapon of the Cold War, Meyer's judicious presentation continues to be worth reading.

Cord Meyer, Jr., died on 13 March 2001 at the age of 80. Controversial to the end, the Washington Post found it necessary to correct the astonishingly misleading headline on Meyer's obituary. See Graeme Zielinski, "Key CIA Figure Cord Meyer Dies; Headed 'Dirty Tricks Department,'" Washington Post, 15 Mar. 2001, B6. The correction reads: "A headline on the obituary of Cord Meyer on March 15 incorrectly described his CIA role. As assistant deputy director for plans of the CIA, he was the number two figure in its Plans Directorate, sometimes referred to as the 'dirty tricks department.'" Washington Post, 16 Mar. 2001, B6.

Pforzheimer calls Facing Reality "an important and carefully written book." Similarly, Lowenthal finds it useful for giving a "sense of CIA views and outlook during the height of the Cold War."

Although only incidentally of intelligence interest, there is now a biography of Meyer's wife, killed in 1964 in the area of the C&O Canal towpath: Nina Burleigh, A Very Private Woman: The Life and Unsolved Murder of Presidential Mistress Mary Meyer (New York: Bantam, 1998). See Evan Thomas' review, Washington Post, 11 Oct. 1998, X5.

Paget, Karen. "From Stockholm to Leiden: The CIA's Role in the Formation of the International Student Conference." Intelligence and National Security 18, no. 2 (Summer 2003): 134-167.

This article focuses on the period from 1949 to 1952, not the full existence of the National Student Association-International Student Conference-CIA relationship. The author believes that "a careful distinction must be made between CIA objectives and its capacity to execute them.... Who had the power to make decisions, and to make them stick, varied greatly throughout the life of the relationship.... In the earlier years,... most differences between the CIA and NSA or ISC offficials tended to be tactical."

Roberts, Steven V. "Ex-Students Aides Defend Subsidies." New York Times, 26 Feb. 1967, 2.

Twelve former presidents of the National Student Association defend their actions in taking CIA subsidies.

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