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CIA Covert Directive NSC 10/2 1

As I study for my history exam tomorrow, I figured I’d share a tidbit of history about the CIA. On June 18, 1948, the CIA was given a National Security Council directive (NSC 10/2). From the State Department website:

NSC 10/2 directed CIA to conduct “covert” rather than merely “psychological” operations, defining them as all activities “which are conducted or sponsored by this Government against hostile foreign states or groups or in support of friendly foreign states or groups but which are so planned and executed that any US Government responsibility for them is not evident to unauthorized persons and that if uncovered the US Government can plausibly disclaim any responsibility for them.”

The type of clandestine activities enumerated under the new directive included: “propaganda; economic warfare; preventive direct action, including sabotage, demolition and evacuation measures; subversion against hostile states, including assistance to underground resistance movements, guerrillas and refugee liberations [sic] groups, and support of indigenous anti-Communist elements in threatened countries of the free world. Such operations should not include armed conflict by recognized military forces, espionage, counter-espionage, and cover and deception for military operations.

The context of this directive was that World War II was over, and tensions were increasing with the Soviet Union and Communism.

In lieu of me being busy tonight studying, I figured I would ask a few questions instead of analyzing this directive. My questions are:

  • Has the US Government and the CIA abused this directive since it was first given in 1948?
  • Should the US still have the right to participate in overthrowing foreign “unfriendly” governments?
  • Do other democratic states have the right to overthrow the US Government if they deem the US “unfriendly”?

One comment on “CIA Covert Directive NSC 10/2

  1. Timur Izhbulatov Feb 8,2011 10:05 pm

    Do you have a photocopy of the original document?

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