Myth Of The 20th Century – Episode 7: The CIA, Wilderness of Mirrors

Welcome to the Myth of the 20th Century. The podcast airs on Fridays.

— Brought to you by —

Adam Smith, Nick Mason, Hank Oslo, and Alex Nicholson.


America’s chief spy masters – the Central Intelligence Agency – came into creation during the second world war, and it received official congressional funding with the National Security Act of 1947. Ever since, the CIA has been involved in every major war the United States has engaged in – officially or not – and now finds itself on the precipice between supporting the ongoing ostensible “War on Terror”, pivoting its focus towards the rise of Red China, re-engaging its Cold War rival in Russia, or even challenging the American president himself. It would not be for the first time. As is the nature of espionage, however, what is not known is arguably much larger than what is known. Today we’ll attempt to outline what we do know, and pose questions about what we do not.


1942- official formation of the Office of Strategic Services
1945- OSS disbanded
1947- CIA formed
1953- Allen Dulles made Director of Central Intelligence
1961- Allen Dulles removed by Kennedy
1975- Church Committee convened
2005- Office of the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) formed


– The National Security Act of 1947,
– Steve Pieczenik –
– The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence, Marchetti and Marks (1974)
– CIA Diary: Inside the Company, Agee (1975)
– The Search for the Manchurian Candidate, Marks (1991)
– Compromised Campus, Diamond (1992)
– Deep Politics and the Death of JFK, Scott (1996)
– The Tatum Chronicles, Tatum (1996)
– Dark Alliance, Webb (1998)
– The Power Elite, Mills (2000)
– Secret Societies and Psychological Warfare, Hoffman (2001)
– Katharine Graham’s Washington, Graham (2003)
– See No Evil, Baer (2003)
– The Politics of Heroin, McCoy (2003)
– The Strength of the Wolf, Valentine (2004)
– Secret History of the CIA, Trento (2007)
– The Baader Meinhof Complex, Edel (2008)
– Legacy of Ashes – the History of the CIA, Weiner (2008)
– The Mighty Wurlitzer, Wilford (2009)
– The Strength of the Pack, Valentine (2010)
– Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, Alfredson (2011)
– Wall Street, Banks, and American Foreign Policy, Rothbard (2011)
– The Cultural Cold War, Saunders (2013)
– American War Machine, Scott (2014)
– Weimerica Weekly – Episode 6 – America Is A Communist Country (2015) –
– Dark Alliance – The CIA, Contras, and the Crack-Cocaine Epidemic, Myth of the 20th Century (2016) –
– A Very Thin Line – Iran-Contra, Myth of the 20th Century (2016) –
– The Phoenix Program, Valentine (2016)
– The CIA as Organized Crime, Valentine (2017)
– The Iranian Revolution, Myth of the 20th Century (2017) –

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  1. BTW, John Foster Dulles was chairman of the infamous American Malvern Conference in 1942.

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