Carl Berstein (photo from the NY Times website)

Carl Bernstein (photo from the NY Times website)

Here is an interesting article that I saw in the internet recently:

THE CIA AND THE MEDIA

How Americas Most Powerful News Media Worked Hand in Glove with the Central Intelligence Agency and Why the Church Committee Covered It Up

BY CARL BERNSTEIN
Published in Rolling Stone on October 20, 1977

In 1953, Joseph Alsop, then one of America’s leading syndicated columnists, went to the Philippines to cover an election. He did not go because he was asked to do so by his syndicate. He did not go because he was asked to do so by the newspapers that printed his column. He went at the request of the CIA.

Alsop is one of more than 400 American journalists who in the past twenty‑five years have secretly carried out assignments for the Central Intelligence Agency, according to documents on file at CIA headquarters. Some of these journalists’ relationships with the Agency were tacit; some were explicit. There was cooperation, accommodation and overlap. Journalists provided a full range of clandestine services—from simple intelligence gathering to serving as go‑betweens with spies in Communist countries. Reporters shared their notebooks with the CIA. Editors shared their staffs. Some of the journalists were Pulitzer Prize winners, distinguished reporters who considered themselves ambassadors without‑portfolio for their country. Most were less exalted: foreign correspondents who found that their association with the Agency helped their work; stringers and freelancers who were as interested in the derring‑do of the spy business as in filing articles; and, the smallest category, full‑time CIA employees masquerading as journalists abroad. In many instances, CIA documents show, journalists were engaged to perform tasks for the CIA with the consent of the managements of America’s leading news organizations.

Read the rest of the article here.

This is not exactly news. But still it surprises those who are naive enough to believe that journalists — especially mainstream journalists — are generally objective, unaligned, and professional people of integrity. Ha.

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