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Example research essay topic: Central Intelligence Agency President Franklin D Roosevelt - 1,613 words

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Intelligence After the First World War, the European nations assumed that the United States (US) would continue to involve itself in international matters, particularly in helping to reconstruct Europe and help maintain the balance of power. However, the US showed no inclination to become involved. On the one hand, this was seen in Europe as evidence of selfishness and immaturity. On the other, whilst many Americans shared the Europeans sense of disillusionment with the war and its aftermath, they also believed that their involvement had been both unnecessary and a grave mistake. The Nye Committee (1935) proclaimed that the US had been lured into the war by armaments manufacturers and by Wall Street bankers who wanted to save their fortunes. Foreign policy had seldom interested many Americans, and there was no earthly reason in the inter-war years why they felt that they should become involved in what they considered being the affairs of other nations.

They were not threatened and more important activities to which they wanted to devote their time and money. Many thought of relations with other nations in terms of trade and finance, which belonged in the realm of the private sector and that there was little need for political and hence public involvement with other countries. As a result, the American approach to foreign policy in the inter-war years appears to be confused. Public opinion, and Congress, appeared to be predominantly isolationist and this had to be taken into account by presidents and policy makers who wished to be more active. During the 1920 s, Republican Party administrators implemented a foreign policy consisting of two main themes.

First, the reconstruction of Europe in which the government would take a back seat to the private sector, and second the backing of moves for the reduction of armaments and limitation in which the government itself took the lead. From 1933 onwards the Democratic Party came to power and isolationism continued to be a dominant strain in US politics and foreign policy. Roosevelt announced at the World Economic Conference (1933) that the US would concentrate on domestic economic recovery. In addition a series of Neutrality Acts were passed by Congress which were intended to fence off the US from future conflicts by ensuring that businessmen and financiers could not do business with those waging war. Public opinion continued to remain strong the severity of the Depression led many to conclude that their efforts and attention ought to be focused on home affairs rather than abroad. Isolationism also had a historical source as well.

America was largely a land of immigrants, of people who had left Europe and its problems behind. Why the need to get involved again? Even before the devastating attack at Pearl Harbor, President Franklin D. Roosevelt was concerned about American intelligence deficiencies. The next day December 7, 1941, the day of the attack, President Roosevelt still could have warned Hawaii. He had received a Fourteen Part Message that stated that Japan was declaring war and would attack Pearl Harbor at 1 P.

M. Washington time or dawn at Pearl Harbor. Roosevelt had plenty of time to warn Hawaii of the attack. The United States government refused to use the scrambler phone on his desk, refused to send a warning by the fast, more secures Navy system. The government knew it would take 30 or 40 minutes by Army radio. Roosevelt was satisfied because that meant he had delayed enough so the warning wouldn't reach Pearl Harbor until after the 1 PM Washington time deadline.

The warning was in fact sent commercially without priority identification and arrived 6 hours late. This message reached all other addressees, like the Philippines and Canal Zone, in a timely manner. After attack President Franklin D. Roosevelt asked New York lawyer William J. Donovan to draft a plan for an intelligence service. In June of 1942, the Office of Strategic Services was established in order to collect and analyze strategic information required by the Joint Chiefs of Staff and to conduct special operations that were not assigned to other agencies.

During the World War II, the Office of Strategic Service (OSS) supplied policymakers with essential facts and intelligence estimates, and the office often played an important role in directly aiding military campaigns. The OSS never received complete jurisdiction over all foreign intelligence activities. Since the early 1930 s the FBI had been responsible for intelligence work in Latin America, and the military services protected their areas of responsibility. In October 1945, the OSS was abolished, and its functions were transferred to the State and War Departments. The need for a postwar centralized intelligence system remained a problem. Eleven months earlier, Donovan, at the time a major general had submitted to President Roosevelt a proposal that called for the separation of the OSS from the Joint Chiefs of Staff with the new organization having direct Presidential supervision.

Donovan proposed an organization which will procure intelligence both by overt and covert methods and will at the same time provide intelligence guidance, determine national intelligence objectives, and correlate the intelligence material collected by all government agencies. 2 Under his plan, a powerful, centralized civilian agency would have coordinated all the intelligence services. Donovan's plan drew heavy political debate. In response to this policy dispute, President Harry S. Truman established the Central Intelligence Group in January of 1946, directing it to coordinate existing departmental intelligence, supplementing but not supplanting their services. 3 Twelve months later, the National Intelligence Authority and its operating component, the Central Intelligence Group, were disestablished. Under the provisions of the National Security Act of 1947, the National Security Agency and the Central Intelligence Agency were established. The 1947 Act charged the CIA with coordinating the nations intelligence activities and correlating, evaluating and disseminating intelligence, which affects national security. 4 The Act also made the Director of Central Intelligence (DCI) responsible for protecting intelligence sources and methods.

The Central Intelligence Agency Act was passed in 1949 permitting the Agency to use confidential fiscal and administrative procedures, and this Act is the authority for the secrecy of the Agency's budget. In order to protect intelligence sources and methods from disclosure, the 1949 Act exempted the CIA from having to disclose its organization, functions, names, officials, titles, salaries, or numbers of personnel employed. 5 The national interests of the United States require the Intelligence Community to maintain worldwide vigilance on the foreign threats to U. S. citizens, both civilian and military, infrastructure, and allies. In addition, they also seek to inform policy makers of opportunities to advance U. S.

foreign policy objectives. To accomplish its missions, the CIA engages in research, development, and deployment of technology for intelligence purposes. 7 Most American citizens are not fully aware of the full extent to which the CIA has affected American society. The public has limited knowledge of the secret operations of the CIA, but the few campaigns that are open to the public prove that the CIA plays an essential role in American foreign relations. The birth of the CIA actually occurred because of the surprise bombing of Pearl Harbor by the Japanese in 1941 (Tully 8). This attack, which wiped out Americas Pacific fleet, revealed our governments lack of a single organization to analyze, coordinate, and distribute vital intelligence information (9). Although President Franklin D.

Roosevelt started the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), our countrys first national spy agency, Harry S. Truman discontinued it because of governmental lobbyists who insisted that it was not necessary during peacetime (9). However, President Truman, confused by the different intelligence reports, appointed several high-ranking military men as the National Intelligence Authority, which, in turn, became the Central Intelligence Agency (10). The main purpose of the CIA is to collect and analyze foreign intelligence information essential to the United States security (Central Intelligence Agency 254).

The CIA also unifies the activities of other important agencies in the intelligence community such as the Defense Intelligence Agency and the National Security Agency (254). The duties of the Central Intelligence Agency are numerous: engaging in research in military, scientific, and political fields, conducting counterintelligence activities in other countries, checking foreign television and radio broadcasts, taking part in espionage, and most importantly warning the President of the United States and the National Security Council about international occurrences (254). The four directorates of the CIA include Intelligence, Operations, Science and Technology, and Administration. The Intelligence Directorate examines intelligence that is collected both openly and secretly through spying, satellite pictures, and the blocking of communication (Kessler 99). Perhaps the best known of the directorates is that of the Directorate of Operations (3). This directorate handles secret operations that include the concealed gathering of intelligence and other secret operations (3).

Of the 22, 000 employees of the CIA, 5, 000 are in this directorate (3). This proud directorate takes the most chances and causes the most trouble for the CIA (3). In addition to the inventing of technological devices, the third directorate, that of Science and Technology, keeps the CIA informed about scientific and technology improvements (77, 165). The last directorate that of Administration, oversees the Office of Security that is charged with the safety of personnel, facilities, and other information (132, 165). The war might have been inevitable but the attack on Pearl Harbor could have been prevented. The United States had deciphered many Japanese codes.

One of these codes was the Purple Code; the top Japanese diplomatic machine cipher that used automatic telephone switches to separately and differently encipher each character sent. It was cracked by 331 men of the Army Signal Intelligence Service. Another code was J- 19. This was the main Japanese diplomatic codebook. This columnar code...


Free research essays on topics related to: central intelligence agency, national security agency, harry s truman, joint chiefs of staff, president franklin d roosevelt

Research essay sample on Central Intelligence Agency President Franklin D Roosevelt

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