220. Editorial Note

In a March 5, 1965, letter to Ambassador to Germany McGhee, Deputy Under Secretary of State for Administration Crockett responded to several questions McGhee had raised concerning the role of ambassadors in the planning and direction of Central Intelligence Agency activities (Document 28). McGhee raised the questions in connection with implementing the Department of State’s Comprehensive Country Programming System. Crockett sent a copy of the letter to Richard Helms, Deputy Director of Plans of the Central Intelligence Agency, which Helms acknowledged in an April 6 letter to Crockett. Helms noted that he “was about to dispatch my detailed reply when our meeting of 1 April took place.” No record of that meeting has been found, [Page 489] but Helms commented that it “tended to bring us closer together on how to handle the problems presented by the CCPS.” Helms noted further that he would send a representative to meet with Richard Barrett, Director of the Department of State’s Office of Management Planning. In that meeting on April 16, and at a second meeting with Robert Cox of Barrett’s office on July 6, CIA representatives pointed out (according to an October 5 draft letter from Helms to Crockett) that portions of Crockett’s letter were “in conflict with standing agreements and suggested that there be no further distribution of the former.” (Central Intelligence Agency, DDO/IMS Files, Job 78–3805, US Gov’t-Dept of State) For information on the standing agreements, see Document 243 and footnote 3 thereto. In a March 27 memorandum to all Chiefs of Station, Deputy Director of Central Intelligence Carter reviewed the coordination of clandestine intelligence activities abroad (Document 221). CIA concerns over Crockett’s letter were raised anew by a CIA representative at a meeting on October 8 with Koren, Deputy Director for Coordination of the Department of State’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research (see Document 238).

For the President’s Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board’s view of the role of ambassadors in CIA activities, see Document 248. For additional discussion of the issue, see Documents 234, 237, 243, 257, 261, 263, and 267.