FACT: 400+ journalists secretly carried out assignments for the CIA between 1948 to 1972:
As far back as I can remember there has always been some person or group complaining that the government uses the media to push its agenda. Most of the time, it's the Right Wing and the Republican Party doing the complaining. Well, they have President Richard Nixon and his henchmen to blame for that...the Watergate Scandal has remained vivid in the minds of reporters and pundits for the past 40 years. The scandal also resulted in the indictment, trial, conviction and incarceration of 43 people...as well as the first resignation of an American President before his impending impeachment.
If you think the current spin on the cable news channels is bad, imagine what it’d be like if the CIA still steered the ship. Under Operation Mockingbird, the CIA’s sticky fingers touched over 300 newspapers and magazines.
In 1948, the CIA recreated its covert action wing called the Office of Policy Coordination with Wall Street lawyer Frank Wisner as its first director. Another early elitist who served as Director of the CIA from 1953 to 1961 was Allen Dulles, a senior partner at the Wall Street firm of Sullivan and Cromwell, which represented the Rockefeller empire and other trusts, corporations, and cartels.
Media assets will eventually include ABC, NBC, CBS, Time, Newsweek, Associated Press, United Press International (UPI), Reuters, Hearst Newspapers, Scripps-Howard, Copley News Service, etc. and 400 journalists, who have secretly carried out assignments according to documents on file at CIA headquarters, from intelligence-gathering to serving as go-betweens. They promoted the CIA’s views and provided services: spying in foreign countries, gathering intelligence, and publishing reports written by the CIA. Sometimes, Wisner commissioned journalists to write pro-government articles at home and abroad. And, as if a CIA spin weren’t enough, it also paid editors to keep anti-government pieces off the presses. Journalists with ties to the CIA also planted false intelligence in newsrooms so that unconnected reporters would pick it up and write about it.
The CIA teamed up with journalists because many reporters had strong foreign ties. A journalist reporting from abroad could gather information that the CIA couldn’t, and they could plant propaganda better, too.
The CIA had infiltrated the nation's businesses, media, and universities with tens of thousands of on-call operatives by the 1950's. CIA Director Dulles had staffed the CIA almost exclusively with Ivy League graduates, especially from Yale with figures like George Herbert Walker Bush (one day I would love write a huge article about this character and his family's lurid ties) from the "Skull and Crossbones" Society.
According to the Congressional report published following the investigation of theSelect Committee to Study Governmental Operations with Respect to Intelligence Activities in 1975:
"The CIA currently maintains a network of several hundred foreign individuals around the world who provide intelligence for the CIA and at times attempt to influence opinion through the use of covert propaganda. These individuals provide the CIA with direct access to a large number of newspapers and periodicals, scores of press services and news agencies, radio and television stations, commercial book publishers, and other foreign media outlets."
Video - Operation Mockingbird, CIA Media Control Program
Today, major networks are primarily controlled by giant corporations that are obligated by law, to put the profits of their investors ahead of all other considerations which are often in conflict with the practice of responsible journalism. The first tier of the nine giant firms that dominate the world are Time Warner/AOL, Disney/ABC, Bertelsmann, Viacom/CBS, Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation/Fox, General Electric/NBC, Sony, Universal/Seagram, Tele-Communications, Inc. or TCI and AT&T. This is just the head of the octopus which has its second and third tier tentacles working together in unison or feigned division. This would include The Washington Post/Newsweek, The New York Times/Weekly Standard, Tribune Co., US News, Gannett/USA Today, Dow Jones/Wall Street Journal, Washington Times, Knight-Ridder, etc.
NOTE: Now for a bit of conspiracy to chew on. One of the primary reasons John F. Kennedy was assassinated had to do with the fact he dared to interfere in the framework of power. Kennedy was intent on exercising his elected powers and not allowing them to be usurped by power-crazed individuals in the intelligence community, threatening to "splinter the CIA in a thousand pieces and scatter it to the wind." There were four things that filled the CIA with rage and sealed his fate; JFK fired Allen Dulles, was in the process of founding a panel to investigate the CIA's numerous crimes, put a damper on the breadth and scope of the CIA, and limited their ability to act under National Security Memoranda 55. May I suggest you watch the video Dark Legacy...it's also available on NetFlix. There is an excellent review of the video at DVD Review: Dark Legacy - George Bush and the Murder of John F. Kennedy. I don't usually buy into most conspiracy theories but the connections outlined in this video including important source information is compelling...Lon
The CIA and the Media: An Unfinished History
The Art of Intelligence: Lessons from a Life in the CIA's Clandestine Service
JFK: The CIA, Vietnam, and the Plot to Assassinate John F. Kennedy (Second Edition)
Bond of Secrecy: My Life with CIA Spy and Watergate Conspirator E. Howard Hunt