25. Memorandum From the Chief of Naval Operations and Commander in Chief, U.S. Fleet (King) to Secretary of the Navy Forrestal 0

SUBJECT

  • Intelligence

REFERENCE

(a)
Memo from Admiral S.M. Robinson dated 4 October 1945 on the subject of Intelligence1
1.
Admiral Robinson’s memorandum is on a subject of great importance to the United States. It is, as he says, most important that there be provided a proper intelligence department in this Government.
2.
As you know, and as Admiral Robinson probably does not know, the Joint Chiefs of Staff have recognized the inadequacy of present organizations in various Governmental departments and have submitted to the Secretaries of War and Navy their recommendations for the creation of a central coordinating authority for the operation of an intelligence service of the United States.
3.
It is understood the recommendations of the Joint Chiefs of Staff have been forwarded by the Secretary of Navy and the Secretary of War to the Secretary of State for further transmittal to the President for his information. As you know, this recommendation provides for setting up a national intelligence authority composed of the Secretaries of State, War and Navy and a representative of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, with a Director of a central intelligence agency appointed by the President and an intelligence advisory board.
4.
In my opinion, the present unsettled question concerning the reorganization of intelligence activities of the Government should be resolved at the earliest practicable date. I recommend that the Navy Department press for an early establishment of the central intelligence agency along the lines recommended by the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
EJ King

Fleet Admiral, U.S. Navy
  1. Source: National Archives and Records Administration, RG 80, General Records of the Department of the Navy, SecNav/CNO Top Secret Correspondence File, 1945, Box 21, Folder A8. Top Secret.
  2. King was responding to an October 5 note from Forrestal (ibid.), asking for his comments on an October 4 letter from Admiral Samuel M. Robinson, Chief of the Navy’s Office of Procurement and Material. (Ibid.)