Time to Revive the 1995 Act that Called for Abolishing the CIA

In a recent feature article in The New Yorker magazine, writer Amy Davidson Sorkin recalls the late Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan’s 1995 bill, the Abolition of the Central Intelligence Agency Act.

One of the original neoconservatives, Moynihan had served on the 1975/76 Church Committee, which exposed CIA crimes around the world. Thereafter, he emerged as a staunch supporter of the CIA from his perch on the Senate Foreign Intelligence Committeee—which was set up to provide oversight of the CIA but in practice rubber-stamped most of its activities.

Village Voice columnist Nat Hentoff called Moynihan, “the biggest friend of the CIA the Agency ever had.”

However, with the end of the Cold War, Moynihan started arguing that the country did not need a CIA—which accords with my own view.

The CIA had not redeemed itself after the Church Committee exposed the fact that the CIA had been working around the world to overthrow governments, influence election, assassinate world leaders, and spy on Americans involved in civil rights or anti-war organizations.

Moynihan’s bill was referred to the Senate Intelligence Committee, where it garnered not a single cosponsor and died a quiet death. Worse than that, the debate over the appropriateness of even having a CIA has ended.

Sorkin focuses on the many travails that the Agency has had over the years. She’s not the first person to write about the crimes that the CIA has committed, beginning with stealing the Italian election of 1948, the CIA’s first covert action operation and continuing through the overthrow of the Mossadegh government in Iran, the attempted (and in some cases successful) assassinations of Fidel Castro, Patrice Lumumba, Rafael Trujillo, Sukarno, Ngo Dinh Diem, Salvador Allende, Muammar Qaddhafi, and others.

Sorkin’s analysis is both deft and important. But it’s incomplete.

Keep reading

Author: HP McLovincraft

Seeker of rabbit holes. Pessimist. Libertine. Contrarian. Your huckleberry. Possibly true tales of sanity-blasting horror also known as abject reality. Prepare yourself. Veteran of a thousand psychic wars. I have seen the fnords. Deplatformed on Tumblr and Twitter.

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