of the media--The
The Depraved Spies and Moguls of the CIA's Operation MOCKINGBIRD by Alex Constantine
CIA Disinformation in Action: Operation Mockingbird and the Washington Post
SourceWatch has Revised the History of the CIA's Operation Mockingbird
By Alex Constantine The Operation
Mockingbird I've written about was a state propaganda program and it was, I've
learned from Joe Trento's Secret History of the CIA, assembled by Allen Dulles
in 1946, a year before the Agency was created by the National Security Act.
Dulles considered the cold war propaganda machine so essential that it was his
very first priority - for mind control purposes, as I've explained. Trento
doesn't mention Mockingbird by name, but he does identify the media execs drawn
by Dulles into the program, and they are already known.
Mockingbird was an off-the shelf operation, not an official Agency function. It's doubtful that FOIA could recover much paperwork that makes reference to the CIA's media operations, because in my experience, there always seems to be less documentation on file and accessible than there are covert operations, and sometimes nothing in the files gives a hint of an ongoing operation. For off-the-shelf programs structured around funding cut-outs and operational fronts, chances are all files are shredded before they can be accessed, because these are off the books - and highly illicit, eg. Iran-contra.
"You could get a journalist cheaper than a good call girl, for a couple hundred dollars a month." - CIA operative discussing with Philip Graham, editor Washington Post, on the availability and prices of journalists willing to peddle CIA propaganda and cover stories. "Katherine The Great," by Deborah Davis (New York: Sheridan Square Press, 1991)
 Testimony of Mr. William Schaap on the role of the U.S. Government in the assassination of Martin Luther King
 How the Washington Post Censors the News. A Letter to the Washington Post by Julian C. Holmes
Examples re Internet: AboveTopSecret.com Godlike Productions Jeff Rense Art Bell NESARA ZetaTalk
See: CHAOS COINTELPRO The Greek Chorus CD Jackson
The Mighty Wurlitzer: How the CIA Played America by H Wilford
A major FBI division that was called the crime reporting division was theoretically supposed to keep track of how federal crimes were being reported. Why that was their business, I don't know. But that's what its theory was. But in fact what it was doing was a whole division set up to keep track of journalists and reporters and magazines and newspapers to decide who could be counted on to write stories that the FBI wanted written, who would slant stories the way they wanted it.  Testimony of Mr. William Schaap on the role of the U.S. Government in the assassination of Martin Luther King
the FBI has made relations with the media a key area. Not so much
infiltrating employees as the CIA did, but cultivating very, very deep
connections throughout the American media. They had the entire division of the
FBI -- the crime reporting division was dealing solely with developing friendly
journalists, developing ways in which you could get what you wanted to appear in
the papers to be there and what you didn't want not to be there on a level that
was -- nobody realized until these -- these reports came out.
The crime reporting division was keeping track of virtually every journalist in America that wrote anything that had to do with the FBI. And whether everything was being classified as friendly or unfriendly, it -- of course, it was somewhat complicated because it generally meant: Did J. Edgar Hoover like what they wrote or not like what they wrote? And practically -- the opinion of nobody else at the FBI mattered while Hoover was alive.
But he kept charts on every significant journalist as to who was helpful. And when you look through the reports and the documents that have come out, you will see statements by Hoover and his immediate subordinates get this information to friendly journalists. Get this to our friend at U.S. News and World Report. Get this to some friendly reporters in Memphis. And you just see all that sort of stuff.
Interestingly though, this information -- it never mattered whether the information was true or false. That was not what it was about. You find FBI planting information that's true, you find them planting information that's false. The critical thing was if they had the friend at that media place, that friend was going to run what they wanted without investigating it.  Testimony of Mr. William Schaap on the role of the U.S. Government in the assassination of Martin Luther King
Once Dr. King made that statement, the CIA in particular considered him and his movement fair game. Even to the extent that their operations were limited to foreign policy, the -- again, because of the congressional investigations, we know that the CIA, which people thought did not operate domestically within the U.S., had a huge domestic program called Operation Chaos which was designed to counter opposition to the Vietnam War.  Testimony of Mr. William Schaap on the role of the U.S. Government in the assassination of Martin Luther King
As we know, silence can be
deafening. Disinformation is not only getting certain things to appear in print,
it's also getting certain things not to appear in print. I mean, the first --
the first thing I would say as a way of explanation is the incredibly powerful
effect of disinformation over a long period of time that I mentioned before. For
30 years the official line has been that James Earl Ray killed Martin Luther
King and he did it all by himself. That's 30 years, not -- nothing like the
short period when the line was that the Cubans raped the Angolan women. But for
30 years it's James Earl Ray killed Dr. King, did it all by himself.
And when that is imprinted in the minds of the general public for 30 years, if somebody stood up and confessed and said: I did it. Ray didn't do it, I did it. Here's a movie. Here's a video showing me do it. 99 percent of the people wouldn't believe him because it just -- it just wouldn't click in the mind. It would just go right to -- it couldn't be. It's just a powerful psychological effect over 30 years of disinformation that's been imprinted on the brains of the -- the public. Something to the country couldn't -- couldn't be.
.....I'm not a doctor. But what I understood is that these -- the brain's patterns of thinking are a physical aspect of the human brain. That's how we develop patterns of thought, how we develop associations.
And then, of course, the Mighty Wurlitzer we talked about is still there, it's still playing its tune. And even though you might think 30 years is a long time, that almost everybody who might get in trouble is probably dead by now, that's -- that's how it works. People obtain influence, people make vast sums of money through this propaganda. Those people pass that influence on to others, they pass the money down the line, and all of that can be at risk for a very, very long time.
There are documents from the investigation of the assassination of Abraham Lincoln that are still classified. Don't ask me why, but they were originally sealed for 100 years. And then in 1965 President Linden Johnson said, well, it's so close to the Kennedy assassination, if people read the Lincoln documents, it might make them think funny things about Kennedy, so he classified them for another 50 years. So now the grand children of anybody around Lincoln was around are long dead, and these documents are still -- still classified. And we're talking today about a case that's 100 years more immediate than Lincoln. And the establishment is still the establishment.  Testimony of Mr. William Schaap on the role of the U.S. Government in the assassination of Martin Luther King
About a third of the whole CIA budget went to media propaganda operations. ...We're talking about hundreds of millions of dollars a year just for that.....close to a billion dollars are being spent every year by the United States on secret propaganda. The FBI is much harder to -- to get figures for because they don't generally admit to conducting media operations. And unless and until something gets exposed and they have to admit that particular operation, they -- they deny to an extent where it's really hard to try and estimate how much money is being used by the FBI and by the military intelligence agencies. But it's sort of clear that hundreds of millions of dollars a year are being spent by various aspects of the government on deliberately creating and spreading lies.  Testimony of Mr. William Schaap on the role of the U.S. Government in the assassination of Martin Luther King
But when the Church Committee reported on the CIA media operations, for example, beyond friends in the press, beyond having people who were just generally -- thought along similar lines, it turned out that they had thousands of journalists in their employ. Not merely friendly, not merely agents, not merely someone you could pass a story to, but people who might have appeared to the outside world to be a reporter for CBS was in fact a CIA employee getting a salary from the CIA.  Testimony of Mr. William Schaap on the role of the U.S. Government in the assassination of Martin Luther King
And that was repeated thousands of times all around the world. They also
owned outright, the CIA -- about that time 250 or more media organizations.
That's wire services, newspapers, magazines, radio, TV stations -- all around
the world that they owned outright. The actual shareholder of the company turned
out to be some CIA front.
The Church Committee, unfortunately, did not name very many of these organizations because those that got named, of course, had to close down immediately. But it was learned that -- even things like the Rome Daily American, which was a major English language newspaper in Rome, for 20 or 30 years had been owned by the CIA. This was published and, of course, the paper closed the next day.
But most people didn't realize the extent of the intelligence media organization. It's fairly incredible. They sort of brag about it. When you read the books about the history of the CIA, one of the heroes was the first man in charge of media operations, a man named Frank Wisner. And they referred to his organization as the Mighty Wurlitzer. And there's this image of this guy sitting at one of those giant organs, you know, with seventeen keyboards and you're playing this -- sort of like The Phantom of the Opera in that scene, and there was the guy running the CIA media operations all around the world. And he really was because every single city of any size on earth, he had some employee who was -- supposedly worked for a newspaper or a magazine or a radio station or a wire service, and they could get stories anywhere.  Testimony of Mr. William Schaap on the role of the U.S. Government in the assassination of Martin Luther King
Jim said he looked and he saw this guy at a nearby desk sit down and type -- this is a CIA officer, an employee of the U.S. Government -- type an editorial and then wave goodbye to everybody, left the office. The next morning that appeared as the editorial -- the lead editorial in the largest newspaper in Japan. Now, that level -- they didn't go to a friendly publisher and say, gee, we would sort of like it if you could maybe do something a little bit favorable to this issue. They wrote the editorial, they handed it to the guy. And the next day in Japanese it appears in the paper.  Testimony of Mr. William Schaap on the role of the U.S. Government in the assassination of Martin Luther King
And they thought it was so great to kill Americans that they were putting it on their postage stamps. The only thing that was later learned is that these were not North Vietnamese stamps. They were CIA forgeries. Had never been real stamps. And the CIA was able to have them appear on the cover of Life magazine as if they were the real thing.  Testimony of Mr. William Schaap on the role of the U.S. Government in the assassination of Martin Luther King