The Agency: Inside the CIA (2010) Movie Script

[radio chatter]
[music plays]
It is one the most secretive
organizations on the planet
unjustified interference
in the internal affairs
of other nations.
Atomic bomb has been
successfully detonated.
Their budget is secret,
as is their roster.
This means that we
must have knowledge
of military forces
and preparations
around the world. It is
a covert organization
in a country that prides
itself on transparency.
There are certain things
that should remain secret
for very good diplomatic
and other reasons.
The CIA had a role in
qin the overthrow
of an elective government.
A small undoing
of those human rights.
... to send a new signal
of openness to the world
by t tring down that wall.
And now it is faced
with a new enemy,
more dangerous than ever before.
It's the biggest spy exchange
since the Cold War. He
described his abduction
as a total failure
for the U.S.
We are the largest, most
capable intelligence
enterprise on the planet.
It is
the Central Intelligence Agency.
[music plays]
Ten people were arrested in
Boston and Northern Virginia,
accused of being part
of a Russian spy ring.
Almost two decades since
the Cold War had finished,
here was a stark reminder that
perhaps it had never ended.
The spies had blended into
American life for years,
The Russian government
was prepared
for upwards of ten years
to mount these operations,
put these people into
American society,
and run them. Have
secret communications
with them, have
them in contact
with Russian
intelligence officers
in the Russian Mission of the
UN over this extended period
of time. What was fascinating
to professional
intelligence officers
was we'd never seen a
network like this.
Now, the public looks
at this and says,
Because none of them were trying
to get into the government,
none of them had clearances,
they were just entering
American society. I think
we should look at them
as talent scouts, as spotters.
In other words, they were moving
into circles of interest.
Financial circles, political
circles, and so forth.
Are we going back
to the Cold War?
We shouldn't think
of it as Cold War.
The Cold War sort
of officiallylynded
when the Soviet Union
dissolved itself,
but Russian espipiage
efforts have never ended.
Only 12 days after
their arrests
and subsequent convictions,
the spy ring was gone,
traded to Russia in a
prisoner exchange.
As part of the swap, ten
people pleaded guilty
and were subsequently deported.
Among them is Igor Sutyagin,
jailed since 1999 for passing
military information
to the CIA, a charge
he's continued to d dy.
The incident was a
reminder of our need
for this covert world, run
by agencies like the CIA.
Of course, spying isn't
a new invention.
It's been with us
for quite a while.
Espionage, or spying, uh,
is, really is as... as old
as recorded history, and
certainly before that.
I mean, I have to believe
the first caveman who saw
the guy down the road getting
better nuts and berries
than he did, climbed
a tree to find out
where he was going.
That's espionage.
But for t t US, prior
to World War II,
the idea of
intelligence gathering
was considered less
than appealing.
This was a time when
espionage was still very new
to thehemerican vocabulary.
by that time in our history, I
think, felt that espionage was
somehow un-American. State
Department tried to start,
uh, it's own
cryptography center,
"The Black Chamber,"
and the famous quote
from the then-secretary
of state, Henry Stimson,
was that, you know,
And he shut it down. Uh, and
then, with the outbreak
of, uh, of World War II, and
the bombing of Pearl Harbor,
it was immediately recognized
that we needed this capability.
In other words, Pearl Harbor,
on December 7th, 1941,
was a surprise attack.
It was all done
with intelligence.
They had the spies
in Pearl Harbor,
uh, that were, you know,
taking photographs
and communicating
back to Tokyo.
The attack was
intended to cripple
the United States'
ability to wage war
before the war in the
Pacific had even begun.
A total of 353 Japanese
aircraft were launched
from six aircraft
carriers in the morning
of December 7th, 1941,
inflicting massive damage.
The US populace,
until the point,
was unconvinced that
war was necessary.
The attacks sparkedd. a
massive mobilization
of all the weapons
required to wage war,
inclcling spies. There was
uh, after Pearl Harbor
in the... in the whole
intelligence community.
...the direct
predecessor to the CIA,
under the leadership of
Donovan is today remembered as
But in those days,
intelligence gathering was
anything but organized.
America, I think,
has a, sort of a long
history of espionage,
rerely dating back to
the Revolutionary War,
that we seemed to
have forgotten,
time and time again.
We have this sort
of schizophrenic relationship
with intelligence where,
when we need it, we have it,
and when we don't need it,
we don't have it. So, um,
we didn't have it. I mean,
essentially there... there
was no centralized
intelligence service, uh,
when World War II broke out,
there were sort of individual
government agencies doing
what you might describe
whether it was the office of...
...but it was done on sort of
a very, uh, informal ad hoc
and not terribly
professional way.
Donovan realized that
if America was going
to win the war, it needed
to have a centralized
intelligence organization
that could react quickly
and preemptively to threats.
And I think
he also understood that America
lacked this capability,
and that World War II was
gonna be a different kinin
of war. It was gonna
really require
uh conventional warfare,
which is really what OSS
engaged in. The drive
for an American
brand of espionage
came right from the top. It
wouldn't have been created
without, uh, Franklin Roosevelt.
Um, who really, I think,
understood the threat
that Nazi Germany posed
to the United States,
even though many
in... in the United States
didn't feel that way.
And although he and
General Donovan
were polls apart politically,
Roosevelt, of course,
being a Liberal Democrat,
and Donovan being
a very Conservative Republican,
they shared this uncommon view.
The v vw was simple. The
OSS would be a new type
of organization, one that
could inflict damage
behind enemy lines. OSS was
the wartime intelligence
arm of the US government,
the covert intelligence
arm, uh, responsible both
for collecting intelligence,
carrying out sabotage,
behind the lines
operations, and so forth.
It was then tasked to Donovan
to recruit members to make
up this new American spy unit.
General Donovan,
him... once, once said himself
that the major part
of the success of
OSS was the result
of good old-fashioned
intellectual sweat.
So they, he really sought out
the greatest intellectuals
of the day. The
popular conception is
that it was sort of
exclusively the domain
of, uh, Skull and Bones
and aristocratic types,
and people often said that
OSS stood for "Oh So Social"
because so many blue
bloods joined it.
And... and the reason
for that was, uh,
fairly obvious, you know.
These are people who are
well-connected all
around the world,
they were well educated.
Uh, they spoke
foreign languages, and
they knew people,
and if you're looking in
the intelligence business
for people that know
people, that would be
a natural constituency.
But you know,
they... they recruited
from Hollywood.
John Ford was the
head of the, uh,
OSS field photographic unit. Uh,
Sterling Hayden, the actor,
who was a marine,
served in the OSS.
Uh, Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. They
recruited writers, artists,
really recruited from every
part of, uh, American society
and culture. With
this new breed
of warriors, Donovan
was determined to make
a splash. The OSS would drop
behind enemy lines, recruiting
resistance fighters,
and causing massive disruptions
of troop movements,
sometimes with Donovan
himself leading the way.
Somebody once said that i
ithe Germans wanna know
where the next invasion
was gonna take place,
they should follow General
Donovan, 'cause he,
he was always there, you know?
He was at the front.
Even went behind enemy lines
on more than one occasion
during the war. So,
imagine you're an OSS guy
somewhere and you're
risking your life
behind enemy lines, and
General Donovan shows up,
you know? Well, if
he's willing to risk
his life, obviously
you're willing to risk
yours. So, he led by example,
and I think that made
a huge difference.
Under Donovan's leadership,
the OSS flourished,
but the major test of
World War II espionage
was still to come.
The OSS may have been
the direct predecessor
to the Central
Intelligence AgAgcy,
bubuit was the British that
were considered the spymasters
on the eve of World War II.
The British are the masters
of intelligence, and
always have been,
Bill Donovan, who had
been head of OSS,
learned a lot from the British
about their organization, how
they went after conducting
intelligence. After
some hesitation,
British intelligence began
training and coordinating
with their American
The British were
renowned for careful
and highly-detailed
planning of operations.
The OSS, on the other hand,
took a different approach.
You know, General Donovan
was famous for telling
OSS personnel that
you couldn't succeed
without taking chances.
He described it
as calculated recklessness.
The OSS I Inched
far-reaching raids
on Gerern forces,
even parachuting
directly into Germany
at one point. This
calculated recklessness
made the Germans take notice,
and America intelligence
began to blossom in advance
of the invasion of Europe.
Allied intelligence had deceived
the German defenders in France
that invasion forces
were preparing to attack
the Port of Calais, a target
many miles to the east
from their intended
landing site of Normandy.
There were a number of
contributions of intelligence
to deceiving the Germans
as to where we would land
when we invaded Europe.
The largest
amphibious invasion
in the history of the world
was about to take place,
and intelligence services
were working around the clock
Intelligence turned
the tide of the war.
Right in that one battle.
As Allied soldiers began
pouring ashore at Normandy,
the German reserve forces
remained at Calais, waiting
to prevent an invasion...
an invasion straight
from the minds
of Allied intelligence officers.
After the landing,
small teams of OSS
operational units
moved in. And these
were 15 to 30 men
teams sent in to Europe to
work behind enemy lines
with resistance groups, and
these were forerunners
of today's US Special Forces.
Donovan's OSS
operational groups
were successful
because he picked its
members very carefully.
What he did is he went out and
he found recent immigrants
from these countries.
From Italy, from Greece,
from France, from
all over Europe,
who knew the country,
spoke the language,
and could easily meld right
back in by going back.
[music plays]
They blew up bridges,
cut telegraph wires,
and attacked enemy
supply depots,
in order to clear the advance
towards Nazi Germany.
But these weren't the only
type of operations the OSS
engaged in. Engaged
in morale operations,
uh, which today are termed
psychological operations.
Uh, the maritime unit did
a lot of really, um,
incredible things.
This was the branch
that, uh, trained people to
go in and put mines on ships,
and go in and advance an
invasion by swimming,
using boats, stuff that
had never been done
before. By the end
of World War II,
William Jay Donovan's band
of warriors had grown to:
But, the OSS's days
were numbered.
Really, it was
Roosevelt's death
that I think, uh, thatateant
the death of the OSS,
'cause he'd been its
greatest benefactor.
He'd protected it from all
its political enemies,
at the Pentagon, at the FBI.
Uh, Truman and Donovan
didn't get along well, um. So
as soon as Roosevelt died,
um, the OSS was disbanded
October 1st of 1945.
Another reason for
the dissolution
of the OSS came from
post-war optimism
for the future. After, uh,
after the war, we kind of felt
that, uh, World War II is over,
and everybody took a deep breath
"That's it, no more
wars. " It was an end
of an organization that
laid the framework
for the CIA. And a historian
who, uh, works for the
Intelligence Community
said to me, "You
know, it's amazing,
whenever I look at any aspect
of the intelligence community
today," he said, "It's
amazing to me how much
of it started with
OSS." But even decades
after Donovan's
organization was disbanded,
there is still a
constant reminder
of its legacy at:
You walk into CIA
the first thing you see is
General Donovan's statue.
I mean, there's an OSS memorial
there, so the CIA understands
that really everything it
does goes back to the OSS.
We had no intelligence service.
Over the space
of three and a half years,
weweet up a global intelligence
organization. It's
really remarkable
what they did.
Only two years passed
before the CIA was formed,
in part to combat a new threat.
The National Security Act
of 1947 created the CIA. The
leadership of the country
realized, uh,
that we were then
in the incipient stages
of the Cold War.
We would need some... mechanism
to collect intelligence
on a national level.
We could streamline
and centralize the intelligence
that various military services
and others collect.
Hence the name
"Central Intelligence
Agency. " In a sense, it was,
it was developed so
there would, quote,
"Be no more Pearl Harbors. "
This new CIA didn't have
to wait long until
their first challenges
arrived. The Soviet
Union, or USSR,
had liberated half of
Europe from Axis control
before they stopped at Berlin.
The only problem?
They didn't leave.
With a new adversary,
barely two years after
the greatest war
in history, this new
agency would have to be
successful and be able
to adapt quickly.
Many wondered if another
war was on the horizon.
One thing was certain. In
this new rising conflict,
the men and d men of the
Central Intelligence
Agency would be the frontline.
As the shellshock of World
War II began to fade,
global leaders met at a series
of conferences to discuss
the future of
war-ravaged Europe.
Russia would control,
or the Soviet Union
would control, uh, Central
and... and Eastern Europe.
So that led to the situation
where Russia actually, uh,
assimilated the Baltic
States as part of Russia,
and then, they
caused a, uh, other,
what they called,
satellite nations,
Czechoslovakia, Poland,
East Germany, uh, Hungarar
Romania, and so forth. They
put their puppet regimes
into those countries where
technically they weren't
part of Russia, but in... as
a matter of fact, uh,
Moscow controlled all of them.
The Allies had learned
a hard lesson from World
War I and sought to handle
post-war Germany
differently this time.
The US and the Allies,
uh, instituted: order to try rehabilitate,
uh, the countries
in... in Western Europe,
as contrasted
to... to the post-World War I
approach, where the Iron Fist
literally put Germany and others
in a position that... well,
they had greatatifficulty
in recovering.
After World War II, the
idea was to aid a recovery.
The Soviet Union,
on the other hand,
had a different idea.
Russians in Eastern Europe
were pulling out
whatever they could
from the Eastern
European nations.
As the Soviets began to
mine Europe for resources,
lines were drawn across
Berlin, now the epicenter
of the Cold War. Berlin
was the... the center
of so many intelligence
that, uh, it was incredible.
There was agents
all over the place in Berlin,
and a lot of double agents
and maybe triple
agents and so forth.
It was probably the golden age
of, uh, clandestine operations
in, uh, Berlin.
Well, Berlin was
an interesting venue
during the Cold War,
of the Soviet Union and its
intelligence services,
Berlin became a divided city.
It was divided
between the British,
the French,
American, and Russian
sectors, but eventually,
East Germany and West Germany.
But this new line dividing
East and West Germany, guarded
by scattered checkpoints, did
little to stop the flololo
of people leaving the
territories to the east.
It didn't take long
for those under
communism to understand
that that was not the way to
go and... and the flow of people
uh, from East
Berlin in the east,
into West Berlin, uh, was
such that the Soviets
could no longer, uh, stand that.
So they built the Berlin Wall.
Homes were destroyed, and
entire city blocks walled
down the middle as
Berlin quickly became
a militarized fortress.
The city slowly dissolved
into chaos as families
were separated
and rioting escalated.
[music plays]
As Berlilibecame a police state,
intelligence officers scrambled
to secure Nazi scientists
with valuable information
and skills. There was
something of a race for those
scientists in Germany,
particularly those
who had worked
on the... on the missile
program there.
The German V-2 Missile
Program created
the world's first long-range
combat ballistic missile.
Over 3,000 of these weapons were
launched against Allied targets
during the war. The Allies
had seen the effects
of these weapons, and
knew that to secure
the missile technology would
prove a powerful deterrent
against the Soviet Union.
Of course,
it didn't take much imagination
to foresee what type of weapon
could be carried
on a V-2 rocket.
[music plays]
German scientists became
instrumental in the creation
of atomic weaponry
on both sides
of the so-called "Iron Curtain,"
the imaginary line dividing
the east from the west.
The bombing of Hiroshima
and Nagasaki essentially
ended World War II,
but it also created a
dangerous technology gap
between the Soviet Union
and the United States.
It wasn't long, however,
until the Soviet Union would
narrow the gap with the help
of the Soviet Intelligence
Agency working in
the United States,
The Soviets had their spies
collecting intelligence
on the atomic bomb.
Joseph Stalin,
head of the Soviet Union,
knew about the American
atomic bomb in
detail, even before
President Harry Truman
knew about the atomic bomb
The Soviet Union's
nuclear program
moved ahead quickly
with the help of spies
in the US, and there was soon
a neck-and-neck arms race.
Russia had a long history
with spying, and the
KGB traced its roots
to the Russian
Revolution of 1917.
They, early on, formed a
very active... intelligence
capability against
their own people.
When the Bolshevik Revolution
took place in 1917, and,
uh, Lenin took over,
communism took over,
the Sov... Russia,
and converted it into
the Soviet Union,
the first thing that he did
was he pulled together
an intelligence service.
They were the key
to his controlling the
Soviet Union and its people.
They were the first
modern state
to begin practicing terrorism
against their own people.
Uh, to suppress dissent, uh,
to unru... uproot dissidence,
anybody who seemed
inimical to the regime,
that early intelligence
used against their own people,
and against out... outsiders,
took on different names.
The NKVD, the OGPU,
and so forth, up
through our time,
when it was the KGB. And
with the help of the KGB,
much of American society had
been infiltrated at the end
of the war. And
during that period,
the Soviet Union, through
the KGB and working
in part through the
Communist party,
had developed, we know, at
least around 250 recruited
American secret sources
in this country.
uh, Hollywood people in
there, uh, media, uh,
they had people in
the White House,
in the Treasury, and so forth.
They had infiltrated
every branch of
the US government
during World War II.
They had two spies
in the White House sitting
beside President Roosevelt.
How many sources did we have
Moscow in the Soviet Union?
And the answer is
a big fat zero.
KGB agents had placed themselves
in positions of power
in nearly every major
department of the US government
by the start of the Cold War,
and things were heating up.
But the agency was about to
make the biggest mistake
of its history. People,
uh, a aund the world,
remember the Bay of Pigs, if
they... they don't remember
anything else. It
was said to be
a CIA disaster.
The Cold War had spread
across the planet.
Britain, France, the
United States, Canada,
and eight other
countries formed NATO,
as states picked
sides in a cold war
that was gradually heating up.
The Korean War had been fought
at the urging of Joseph Stalin,
and a ceasefire was only signed
following his death.
The entire conflict
had continued to escalate with
then-President Eisenhower
ordering the CIA to launch
an invasion of Cuba
with the aim of
overthrowing Fidel Castro.
Castro had aligned himself
with the Soviet Union,
and the US wasn't about to let
a communist country flourish
only 90 miles off the
coast of Florida.
The CIA's invasion of
Cuba would become known
as the Bay of Pigs.
People, uh, around the world
remember the Bay of Pigs,
uh, if they... they don't
remember anything else.
It was said to be
a CIA disaster.
It was another operation to
stymie and stop the expansion
of communism around the world.
The United States
had realized that the only
way to maintain its security
and to halt the
spread of communism,
was to use economic, diplomatic,
and military measures to halt
its spread. This
policy was named
"containment," and a small
bay in Western Cuba
would become its latest battle.
It was planned
der Eisenhower, and
approved under Eisenhower,
with the following stipulation.
The US military would back up
the CIA. Then
with the changing
of administrations, the
plans began to shift.
Kennedy came into office
for the implememtation
of the operation, and
he proceeded to change
the entire plan at
the White House.
They moved it from the
original location
to the Bay of Pigs.
The word came back
from the Kennedy Administration
that the military support
that had been promised
by Eisenhower
was no longer an option.
Even with this lack
Allen Dulles,
then-director of CIA,
and another agent, Dick Bissel,
went ahead with the plan.
Dick Bissel and Allen
Dulles at the CIA believed
they could force Kennedy
to change his mind,
and if the operation
began to fail,
he would really
go in to save it.
The CIA put together a large
bunch of Cuban exiles,
anti-Castro exiles,
and then trained 'em
in, uh, South America.
Word leaked out
as... as it always does,
there's no secrets
in Washington, ever,
anywhere, anytime.
KGB officererworking
Cuba and communist spies
within the Cuban community had
warned on multiple occasions
that the United States was
planning an invasion.
Back in the Soviet Union,
Radio Moscow broadcasted
a prediction of the invasion
four days before the landing
occurred. Despite the
lack of air cover,
the lack of surprise, and
an overwhelming Cuban army
presence, the
invasion took place.
Landing craft
carrying Cuban exiles
and CIA operations
officers landed in the bay
and initially met with
little resistance.
Militia near the bay warned
Castro that landing craft
were approaching
and 35000 trained
Cuban soldiers were dispatched
to engage the CIA paramilitary
force of less than 2000.
There was some air cover
to protect the
paramilitary force,
but it was not enough.
There were a couple
of CIA airplanes, you
know, covert airplanes
to support the landing, but
there was no US Navy jets.
Withoho overwhelming
air superiority,
the CIA planes were
shot down one by one.
As the situation on
the beach dissolved,
the United States
ambassador to the UN,
Adlai Stevenson,
issued a denial
of the entire invasion,
even as Cuban forces
were capturing American
weaponry from the beaches.
United States has committed
no aggression against Cuba
and no offensive has been
launched from Florida
or from any other part
of the United States.
The Cuban Air Force
pounded the beach
as the paramilitary forces
retreated in the face
of overwhelming opposition.
It was over in 72 hours.
The White House tried to play
intelligence officer. They
thought they knew better.
Kennedy's made the
first mistake,
the CIA made the second.
They chose to go ahead.
Fidel Castro rounded up
the remaining survivors and
they were driven to camps
across Cuba. Several
CIA officers
and Cuban exiles were executed
by Castro in the aftermath
of the largest CIA
failure in history.
In November 1961, CIA
inspector general
authored a report on the
invasion that remained
classified top-secret
until 1996.
In the report, he outlined
reasons for the failure
of the operations.
Among others, it also cited
CIA should never
have gone ahead.
If they wanted to
change Kennedy's mind,
they should have said,
"We won't do it.
"We can't do it
without... Navy support. "
That disaster, uh,
has... has plagued the CIA
and its history since
those early days.
That's the way it goes in,
uh, in the intelligence
business. You want
your successes
to be secret, and you
like your failures
to be that way, too, but in
this country, in the US,
media's watching, the
Congress is watching,
uh, uh, you'll be plagued,
uh, that's why you got to be
successful. But I
can assure you
there've been more
successes than failures,
and when they count,
they've succeeded.
But it was only a year later
when the agency would face
its greatest test yet.
Analysts were examining photos
of tiny cylinders laying
in fields in Cuba.
It was becoming clear
that they were
Sovietetuclear missiles. We
had no idea how dangerous
and how close we came
to a nuclear holocaust.
[music plays]
In the aftermath of the
Bay of Pigs invasion,
relations remained uneasy
with the Soviet Union
and the US, but the
Soviets were about
to make a move that would
bring the world closer
to nuclear conflict
than ever before.
There were indications
that the Russians were
up to something, but we d
dn't know what it was.
It turned out that
a... a French military
ououof shape,
in Havana, Cuba,
had heard from s seone, oh,
he overheard a conversation
that the Russians were sneaking
missiles, nuclear weapons
into Cuba. He came
to Washington
and he told the head of the
CIA, and the gov... US government
what he had heard.
Because of that,
the US began to
fly U-2 airplanes
around Cuba, but
not over Cuba,
to see if they could
spot anything unusual.
October 14th, 1962. A U-2
Photo Reconnaissance plane
captured disturbing images
from the island of Cuba.
The following day,
a CIA analyst
spent hours poring over pictures
of miles of Cuban terrain.
The photos were then compared
with information stolen
from Soviet military
The results were grim.
They are, in fact,
installing missiles,
nuclear weapons in Cuba.
They were confirmed as
SS-4 intermediate range
missiles with the
capability of hitting
the US continent as far
west as Dallas, Texas
and as far north
as Washington, DC.
But the second flight,
to get more information,
named, uh, Rudy Anderson. And
his plane was shot down.
Well, that got our attention.
In the morning
of October 18th, CIA
aerial photography expert
Arthur C. Lundahl met
with President Kennedy
in the Oval Office.
Lundahl told Kennedy
that the Soviet Union was
erecting missile bases in Cuba.
Kennedy then went public.
Within the past week,
unmistakable evidence has
established the fact
that a series of
offensive missile sites
is now in preparation on
that imprisoned island.
The purpose of these
bases can be none other
than to provide a nuclear
strike capapility
against the western hemisphere.
President Kennedy
then delivered a swift message
to Soviet Premier Khrushchev.
"You shoot down
another airplane,
or even attempt to do
it, you're finished.
We will, we will wipe out all
of your missiles and crews
in Cuba. We'll bomb them. "
At 6:30 on October
18th, Kennedy met
with the National Security
Council in a committee named:
With the advice of
Excomm, Kennedy ordered
a full naval quarantine of Cuba
in an effort to stem the flow
of Soviet weapons
into the country.
Khrushchev wrote a letter to
Kennedy condemning the action
and said the quarantine
constitutes an act
of aggression,
propelling mankind
into the abyss of a world
nuclear missile war.
This urgent
transformation of Cuba
into an important strategic base
by the presence of these large,
long-range, and clearly
offensive weapons
of sudden mass destruction,
constitutes an explicit threat
to the peace and security
of all the Americas.
Our unswerving objective,
therefore, must be to prevent
the use of these
missiles against this
or any other country, and
to secure their withdrawal
or elimination. The
massive military buildup
around the island of Cuba
continued as the Soviet Union
refused to back down. But
the CIA was one step ahead.
The CIA had an ace
up its sleeve.
The CIA had a spy inside
the Soviet Union,
Colonel Oleg Penkovsky, who was
a Soviet intelligence colonel
that had access to
all of their missile
technology. And
that's how we knew
that we were 13 days away from
those missiles being ready
to be launched against
the United Statete
Khrushchev had no choice
but to agree to remove
his missiles because
he knew and we knew
we still had the Soviet
Union ououunned.
The US had nuclear
military superiority.
President Kennedy
wawaable to say,
"You take those missiles out,
or we will take 'em out. "
That meant that Khrushchev
had no choice but to yield,
back down, and move 'em out.
He struck a deal.
After some negotiation,
the Soviet Union agreed
to withdraw.
However, in trade,
Khrushchev demanded that
Kennedy would remove
his missile launchers
from Turkey and Italy.
And Kennedy said,
"Of course, yeah,
whatever you say. " We
always try to be nice
once we defeat 'em, you know,
that's the American way.
But Khrushchev asked
for one more assurance
from Kennedy. Then he said,
"I want you to promise to
keep hands off of Castro. "
And Kennedy agreed. By
that one... agreement
that Kennedy made, created
the longest-living dictator
in the history of the world.
Couple of things that we learned
about the Cuban missile crisis
later, we had no
idea how dangerous
and how close we came to
a nuclear holocaustst
the principle players in
the crisis met and found
out a startling fact.
Americans involved
in the Cuban missile crisis,
and the Russians involved
in the crisis met in Havana
to have an open discussion
about what really went on.
And we were stunned at
what Russians told us.
They said, "We had authority,
without communicating
with Moscow,
to launch those nuclear weapons
against the United States,
if we felt we were
being attacked. "
Despite the danger, the
CIA had correctly guessed
Soviet intentions and blocked
what might have become
a tipping point in the Cold War.
From the earliest years
of the CIA, the agency
has always employed
cutting-edge technology to
succeed at its mission,
giving it an advantage
in the battle of wits
against the Soviet Union.
The high technology
that came out of
these early days,
went on to become the
most advanced technology
the world had ever seen.
Intelligence gathering
and technology
has gone hand in hand
since the early days
of espionage. Cryptology
has always played
a central role in America's
intelligence gathering efforts.
Cryptology is the practice and
study of hiding information,
and nowhere was this practice
more valuable than in wartime.
During World War II, British
intelligence officers
cracked German codes created
on a machine called:
allowing the Allies to intercept
and read communications
coming out of Axis Europe.
Cryptology plays
such an important role in
keeping the CIA's secrets
that there's a monument
on the CIA campus
in Virginia devoted to it.
One with a puzzle
that even the agency
hasn't been able to solve.
which was developed in
19... late 1980's, uh,
wanted to, uh, to
put works of art
in the various public buildings
and one of them was CIA,
and a gentleman named Sanborn,
uh, came up with the idea
of a sculpture with a... with
a cryptogram in it,
and they hired him and
he accessed the talent
of uh, a then-recently retired
cryptographer from CIA,
who helped him
develop the statue,
and they developed, uh,
a four part, uh, puzzle
that... that's in the statue.
Uh, subsequently, uh,
a gentleman from CIA had
studied it, uh, using uh,
a hand, uh, you know,
paper and pencil method,
and indeed solved three
of the four parts out of,
I think it's 845 letters or so,
uh, there are 97 which remain
secret. And, uh,
that's the challenge,
uh, if anyone wants to
take that challenge up,
it's available. In
the early decades
of the Cold War,
the United States
made up for the lack of
spies in the Soviet Union
by using their
technological advantage.
An advantage called...
Mounted wiwi advanced cameras,
it gave the US knowledge
of Soviet military strength, but
it was capable of much more.
We had onboard the U-2
more than cameras.
We had signal intercept
here, we could listen
to the Russian communications,
, as the plane flew over.
We could tell when their
fighters are trying
to intercept it.
They never could,
but they were trying.
We knew their missiles
are being readied to launch,
uh, against the airplane,
which is flying
around 70,000 feet.
The U-2 was the first high
altitude recon aircraft
operated against
the Soviet Union.
It was used during the
Cuban missile crisis
and during overflights of
Russia until one was shot down
in May of 1960.
But they finally,
they finally got it
in May Day 1960.
But even before that,
the CIA realized
that they needed an
airplane better,
that could not only fly higher
above the... what the missiles
could fire, but
it could outfly
the missiles.
The A-12 Oxcart was designed
as the perfect spy plane,
capable of flying
out of the reach
of Soviet missiles
and even radar.
However, there was a problem
with the construction
of the A-12, although
the CIA had a plan.
The US didn't have
enough titanium
to use to build the
airplane, so the CIA
set up a special operation, we
actually bought the titanium,
it was called titanium
sponge, that's the raw form,
from the Soviet Union,
to build the plane
that's going to spy on them.
After purchasing
some of the materials
necessary to build the A-12
from the Soviet Union, the
plane went on to find
enormous success in discerning
Soviet military intentions.
The plane, uh, started
test flying about '62.
It went... went operational, uh,
couple years after that, uh,
and it flew operational
missions ininhe late '60s.
The A-12 program was cancelled
on December 28th, 1966
to await the arrival
Although visually almost
identical to the A-12,
it was run by the Air Force
with a special mission.
The Air Force had
a unique mission
and it was called... it was called
post strike reconnaissance,
meaning, if there
is a nuclear war,
you have to go fly right away
over the... the damaged territory
and see if you got
all the targets,
do you need to retarget
anything you missed,
the plane had to be
a little sturdier
and more rugged because flying
in a... a post nuclear environment
took a lot of buffeting, maybe.
So they had to be
a little stronger airplane.
Although one difference was
the addition of another
pilot by the Air Force.
They had two... two
people in the airplane,
a systems man and a pilot.
Uh, we always tease
the Air Force about this,
they said, you know,
"CIA planes are single
seaeaea, we can do it all.
Takes two Air Force people
the... that get promoted
to Colonel to fly
theirs," but, uh, it's
friendly... friendly
bantering back and forth.
With tools like the
SR-71, U-2, and A-12,
as well as advanced
cryptology methods,
the US had a decisive
advantage in the Cold War,
and in the late 80s, the
Soviet Union was on the eve
of collapsing. [music plays]
Agents of the KGB and the CIA
fought the battles
of the Cold War,
and Soviet KGB agents
found that infiltrating
American society was
of little difficulty.
They were so successful
because we're such an easy,
naive target. We're
an open society.
It's easy for them to
spy in our country.
We welcome everybody, we're
a nation of immigrants,
they say, spying in Russia,
which is a closed society,
is... is very difficult
because they watch ya. It's
a counter-intelligence
state. Our spies
were far superior
to theirs because they
had the tough job.
When you're being
watched 24 hours a day,
their secrets,
that's called skill.
Despite the KGB's success
at stealing secrets
in the United States,
the world was changing
and the Soviet Union was
on the brink of collapse.
The Berlin wall fell,
marking a symbolic end
to a conflict that had held
the world in the grip of fear
for decades. Families
and neighbors
that had been separated in East
and West Germany were reunited.
German citizens came
out of their homes
and broke off pieces of the
wall that had divided the world
for so long. The
Cold War ended
in uh, in a whimper,
rather than a wail.
If we could just
maintain our strength
long enough, the Soviet Union
had to collapse. As
the, uh, the standoff
continued in this Cold War,
America was changing rapidly,
and the Soviet Union was not. The
Soviet Union had no economy.
The Soviet Union was a
third world country,
but a first class military
system of nuclear weapons.
That's all it was.
President Ronald Reagan
had convinced the Soviet Union
that the US was capable
of defending itself
against nuclear missiles
with a project called SDI.
called it Star Wars. You
know, Star Wars was based
on ability to counter
their Soviet missiles,
in other words, we now,
we have, we've gone
beyond mutually
sure destruction.
Each side can kill the other.
We got one that can keep them
from using their
missiles at all.
Now, Gorbachev is
in real trouble.
He can't get the technology
wanted, it's not working,
and now he's faced
with this new threat
and he made one attempt.
He thought,
"If you'll kill Star Wars,
the Soviet Union will do
almost anything if
you'll do that. "
And they met at
Reykjavk, Iceland
to discuss that treaty.
Reagan said, "No,","
and Gorbachev was
finished righghthere,
he went home with
nothing to show.
And uh, that was,
uh, the beginning
of the actual collapse
of the Soviet Union.
As the Soviet Union collapsed,
the CIA found itself
without an obvious enemy
for the first time
in its history.
But across the Atlantic, a
new danger was growing.
Followers of Islam were
being turned to violence
in certain areas of
the Middle East,
forcing the CIA to
adapt once again.
The intelligence commununy
is changing drastically
because the threats
to our country
During the Cold War, we faced
formidable, powerful enemy,
but they wore uniforms. They
used conventional weapons.
Uh, what we face today is
far more serious threat.
The intelligence community,
as our first line of defense,
has to bat a thousand.
And all the terrorists
have to do is get one over.
And that's a 9/11. I
think intelligence
is always going to
be a mixed success.
There will be failures. It is
the nature of intelligence
in a number of cases to fail.
The basic mission
hasn't changed, but
certainly the focus
and approach, uh, has changed.
And um, at the demise
of the Soviet Union,
uh, one gentleman,
and I believe it
was... it was Bob Gates,
who is now Secretary of Defense,
uh, was saying that, well,
we no longer have
to face the dragon,
uh, but we face a wide
number of venomous snakes.
[music plays]
On a wall in CIA Headquarters,
rows of gold stars
mark the deaths
of CIA operatives fighting
America's enemies
abroad. Many of their names
will never be known,
and their families
will never know the
nature of their sacrifice
because of the secrecy
that must be upheld.
There is a price to pay for
signing up... to do this.
You don't ever talk
about... work at all
with the family.
And... and, and friends.
It"s just not part of
the... the background.
You just don't mention it.
It's like being in the Army
in the wartime,
except the war goes
on all the time for you. You
have to have your background
checked thoroughly. Maybe back
more than one generation. You
have to have your finances
scrutinized, your checkbook,
your investments,
and you're polygraphed
over and over and over.
If the US Congress
was subjected
to the same scrutiny
that the CIA people are,
there wouldn't be many
people left over there.
[music plays]