248. Memorandum From the Deputy Director (Wright) to Director of Central Intelligence Hillenkoetter0
The results of the War Council1 Meeting held this date generally took the following line in connection with an organization to carry out psychological warfare measures. The position of the Security Council was that any propaganda measures in time of peace were a primary function of the State Department and that in any case should not be handled by the Security Council as such since it is in effect an advisory group to the President.
It was decided that the project for carrying out psychological warfare will be restricted solely to the foreign field and would be under the direct supervision of an Assistant Secretary of State. The Assistant Secretary of State to carry out these functions to be appointed from among individuals to be recommended in the next two or three days by the members of the War Council.
It was decided that insofar as public knowledge was concerned that this new organizational set up would deal only in what is known as White propaganda. However, it was agreed that the fullest advantage of any propaganda measures would have to be obtained in the field of Black propaganda. That, therefore, the Assistant Secretary of State to handle this project would have as Advisory Consultants, the Director of [Page 634] Central Intelligence and a military representative to be selected by the War Council.
The Security Council is cognizant of the fact that they will have to issue a directive to the Director of Central Intelligence to provide him the legal status for assisting the State Department in carrying out our phase of operations in this field.
At the SANACC conference this afternoon the Committee was confused by a statement made by Mr. Whitney, Assistant Secretary of Air, that the War Council intended to appoint a Director to carry out these operations under the Assistant Secretary of State mentioned above. This was not the intent nor the expression of the War Council. Their discussions with regard to the appointment of an individual to carry out the project had to do with the appointment of a new Assistant Secretary of State.
I have already submitted to Admiral Souers the name of David K.E. Bruce, currently an Assistant Secretary of Commerce, and have indicated that tomorrow I will furnish him additional names for consideration.
Brigadier General, USA
- Source: Central Intelligence Agency Historical Files, HS/HC–807, Item 4. Secret.↩
- A group consisting of the Secretary of Defense, the three service secretaries, and the three service chiefs, established by the National Security Act of 1947 to advise the Secretary of Defense on “broad policy pertaining to the armed forces.”↩
- Printed from a copy that bears this typed signature.↩