haines.the-pike-committee-investigations-and-the-CIA

haines.the-pike-committee-investigations-and-the-CIA - The...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–3. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
The Pike Committee Investigations and the CIA Unclassified Looking for a Rogue Elephant The Pike Committee Investigations and the CIA Gerald K. Haines A storm broke over the CIA on 22 December 1974, when Seymour Hersh published a front-page article in The New York Times headlined "Huge C.I.A. Operation Reported in U.S. Against Anti-War Forces." Hersh's article alleged that the Agency had been engaged in massive domestic spying activities. 1 His charges stunned the White House and Congress. In response, President Ford established a blue-ribbon panel, the Rockefeller Commission, to investigate CIA activities in the United States. Ford later complicated the already-delicate issue further by hinting of CIA involvement in assassination attempts against foreign leaders. Congress soon launched its own investigation of the entire Intelligence Community (IC) and its possible abuses. On 27 January 1975, the US Senate established the Senate Select Committee to Study Government Operations With Respect to Intelligence Activities (the Church Committee). On 19 February 1975, the House voted to create a House Select Intelligence Committee (the Nedzi Committee, which was replaced five months later by the Pike Committee.) These Congressional investigations eventually delved into all aspects of the CIA and the IC. For the first time in the Agency's history, CIA officials faced hostile Congressional committees bent on the exposure of abuses by intelligence agencies and on major reforms. In the Congress, there was no longer a consensus to support intelligence activities blindly. The old Congressional seniority system and its leadership was giving way. With the investigations, the CIA also became a focal point in the ongoing battle between the Congress and the executive branch over foreign policy issues and the "imperial presidency." The investigations of the Pike Committee, headed by Democratic Representative Otis Pike of New York, paralleled those of the Church Committee, led by Idaho Senator Frank Church, also a Democrat. https://www.cia.gov/csi/studies/winter98_99/art07.html (1 of 18)2/5/2007 4:18:08 PM
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
The Pike Committee Investigations and the CIA While the Church Committee centered its attention on the more sensational charges of illegal activities by the CIA and other components of the IC, the Pike Committee set about examining the CIA's effectiveness and its costs to taxpayers. Unfortunately, Representative Pike, the committee, and its staff never developed a cooperative working relationship with the Agency or the Ford administration. The committee soon was at odds with the CIA and the White House over questions of access to documents and information and the declassification of materials. Relations between the Agency and the Pike Committee became confrontational. CIA officials came to detest the committee and its efforts at investigation. Many observers maintained moreover, that Representative Pike was seeking to use the committee hearings to enhance his senatorial ambitions, and the committee staff, almost entirely young
Background image of page 2
Image of page 3
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

This note was uploaded on 04/17/2008 for the course HIST 361 taught by Professor Haines during the Spring '08 term at UVA.

Page1 / 17

haines.the-pike-committee-investigations-and-the-CIA - The...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 3. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online