Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Activities Possibly Outside CIA's Legislative Charter

8 May 1973

MEMORANDUM FOR: Director of Central Intelligence

FROM: Deputy Director for Intelligence

1. This memorandum responds to your instruction to report any activities which might be considered outside CIA's legislative charter.

2. All Office and Staff chiefs in the Intelligence Directorate have reviewed the past and present activities of their components. I have received responses from all of them, and none reported any activities related to either the Watergate affair or the break into the offices of Ellsberg's psychiatrist. Although contacts with three of the people allegedly implicated in these incidents were reported, these contacts were on matters other than the two improper activities:

Hunt: Col. White, Richard Lehman, and I talked to Hunt in late 1970 regarding his preparation of a recommendation in support of the Agency's nomination of R. Jack Smith for the National Civil Service League Award.

Mitchell: While Mr. Mitchell was Attorney General, an OCI officer was assigned the task of providing him with daily briefings on foreign developments.

Young: Harry Eisenbeiss and [...] of CRS had frequent contacts with Young during the summer of 1972 in connection with Executive Order 11652 and the implementing NSC directive. This involved visits by Young to CIA to discuss information storage and retrieval and several meetings of an interagency group dealing with the implementation of the Executive Order and directive.

3. In accordance with my instructions, several Offices reported domestic activities which might appear questionable to outsiders. Their responses are attached. Most of these activities are clearly within the Agency's charter, but there are a few which could be

- DCS accepts information on possible foreign involvement in US dissident groups and on the narcotics trade when sources refuse to deal with the FBI and BNDD directly.

- DCS, for six months in late 1972 and early 1973, was acquiring telephone routing slips on overseas calls.

- NPIC and COMIREX review satellite imagery from NASA programs to identify photography too "sensitive" for public release.

- NPIC has examined domestic coverage for special purposes such as natural catastrophes and civil disturbances.

- OCI, in 1967 and 1968, prepared intelligence memoranda on possible foreign connections with the US anti-war movement and world-wide student dissidence (including the SDS) at the request of the White House.

- FBIS has on occasion supplied linguists to work directly for another agency, e.g., to the FBI to translate Arabic in Washington.

- FBIS monitors radio press dispatches and reports covered by copyright. These are circulated within the Government and stamped "Official Use Only". This has gone on for three decades without problems.

- FBIS has monitored and reported on foreign radio broadcasts of statements and speeches of US citizens such as those by US POWs in Hanoi, Jane Fonda, and Ramsey Clark.

Deputy Director for Intelligence

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