60. Editorial Note

In a directive of April 4, 1951, to the Secretary of State, the Secretary of Defense, and the Director of Central Intelligence, President Truman established the Psychological Strategy Board. His goal was to promote “more effective planning, coordination and conduct, within the framework of approved national policies, of psychological operations.” The Board, consisting of the Under Secretary of State, the Deputy Secretary of Defense, and the Director of Central Intelligence, was to report to the National Security Council. For text of the directive of April 4, see Foreign Relations, 1951, volume I, pages 5860. See also ibid., pages 902965. President Truman appointed Gordon Gray as the first Director of the Psychological Strategy Board.

The White House released an abbreviated version of the President’s directive on June 20. See Public Papers: Truman, 1951, pages 341–342.

The Department of State initially opposed the creation of the Board and later maintained that a Department member should chair the [Page 121] Board, arguing that it was “impossible … to entrust the formulation and execution of policies and programs of political warfare to an agency not subject or subordinate to the Department of State.” (Memorandum from Under Secretary of State Webb to the Director, Bureau of the Budget, March 15; National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1950–54, 100.4 PSB/4–451) Ellipsis in the original.

Master files of minutes and papers of the PSB for the years of its existence are ibid., S/S–NSC Files: Lot 62 D 333. Additional material on the establishment of the PSB and its operations is ibid., P Files: Lot 55 D 339, Barrett Files and ibid., Central Files 1950–54, 100.4/PSB, 511.00, and 711.5200.