'I Led Three Lives' reminds us continually that the individualized American male is the agent of historical change and the subject of every 'true' historical narrative.
The CIA in Hollywood
http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/index ... opic=22657
lawfareblog.com wrote:The book also declines to connect the Agency’s current entertainment industry efforts to its long history of cultural influence. (Just one example of this—and maybe an opportunity for some future inquiry—was the CIA role in generating early funding and prestige for the now-famous Iowa Writer’s Workshop.) And Jenkins only mentions in passing Langley’s relationship with USC’s Institute for Creative Technologies, where Industry professionals workshop threat scenarios and develop military and intelligence tools. So there are gaps in Jenkins’s coverage, and it misses an opportunity for a larger intellectual discussion about the proper role of a democratic government and its agencies, covert or overt, in the promotion of its foundational political ideas—but the book at least cracks the door on some undeniably cool topics.
[T]he CIA has at times tried to downplay its role in Cold War motion pictures. In a panel discussion about Hollywood and the CIA, for example, CIA lawyers suggested that the Agency did not function in Cold War entertainment at all. Former CIA associate general counsel Paul Kelbaugh specifically explained that the CIA‟s lack of involvement in Hollywood before the 1990s stemmed from its “very aggressive ethics training program” on things like illegally using taxpayers dollars to benefit one group over another.
TME and guest Tricia Jenkins discuss "The CIA in Hollywood: How the Agency Shapes Film and Television." We investigate of the relationship between the Agency and the film and television industries. Tricia Jenkins draws on numerous interviews with the CIA’s public affairs staff, operations officers, and historians, as well as with Hollywood technical consultants, producers, and screenwriters who have worked with the Agency, to uncover the nature of the CIA’s role in Hollywood. Her research reveals the significant influence that the CIA now wields in Hollywood and raises important and troubling questions about the ethics and legality of a government agency using popular media to manipulate its public image.
brekin wrote:With CIA help, writers were enlisted to battle both Communism and eggheaded abstraction. The damage to writing lingers.
@JasonLeopold 9 hours ago
These are the 8 entertainment projects CIA helped produce that were previously classified https://news.vice.com/article/cia-helpe ... rt-affairs …
MinM » Mon Feb 22, 2016 1:57 am wrote:WarGames’ and Cybersecurity’s Debt to a Hollywood Hack
By FRED KAPLAN FEB. 19, 2016
Movies rarely influence public policy, but Washington’s policies on cyberattacks, computer surveillance and the possibility of cyberwarfare were directly influenced by the 1983 box-office hit “WarGames.”
The film — starring Matthew Broderick as a tech-whiz teenager who unwittingly hacks into the computer of the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) and nearly sets off World War III — opened nationwide that June 3. The next night, President Ronald Reagan watched it at Camp David. And that is where this strange story — culled from interviews with participants and Reagan Library documents — begins.
The following Wednesday, back in the White House, Reagan met with his national-security advisers and 16 members of Congress to discuss forthcoming nuclear arms talks with the Russians. But he still seemed focused on the movie.
At one point, he put down his index cards and asked if anyone else had seen it. No one had, so he described the plot in detail. Some of the lawmakers looked around the room with suppressed smiles or raised eyebrows. Three months earlier, Reagan had delivered his “Star Wars” speech, imploring scientists to build laser weapons that could shoot down Soviet missiles in outer space. The idea was widely dismissed as nutty. What was the old man up to now?
After finishing his synopsis, Reagan turned to Gen. John W. Vessey Jr., the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and asked: “Could something like this really happen?” Could someone break into our most sensitive computers? General Vessey said he would look into it.
One week later, the general returned to the White House with his answer. “WarGames,” it turned out, wasn’t far-fetched. “Mr. president,” he said, “the problem is much worse than you think.”
Reagan’s question set off a series of interagency memos and studies that culminated, 15 months later, in his signing a classified national security decision directive, NSDD-145, titled “National Policy on Telecommunications and Automated Information Systems Security.”
The first laptop computers had barely hit the market; public Internet providers wouldn’t exist for another few years. Yet NSDD-145 warned that these new machines — which government agencies and high-tech industries had started buying at a rapid clip — were “highly susceptible to interception.” Hostile foreign powers were “extensively” hacking into them already; “terrorist groups and criminal elements” had the ability to do so, too.
General Vessey could answer the president’s question so promptly — and national-security aides could compose NSDD-145 in such detailed language — because, deep within the bureaucracy, a small group of scientists and spies had been concerned about this looming threat for more than a decade.
In the 1960s, the Defense Department’s Advanced Research Projects Agency undertook a program called the ARPAnet. The idea, a precursor to the Internet, was to let Pentagon labs and contractors share data and research on the same network.
Just before the program’s rollout, in April 1967, an engineer named Willis Ware wrote a paper called “Security and Privacy in Computer Systems.” A computer pioneer dating back to the ’40s, Mr. Ware headed the computer science department at the RAND Corporation, the think tank in Santa Monica, Calif.
In his paper, he lauded the goals of the ARPAnet but explained some risks of what he called “on-line” networks. As long as computers sat in isolated chambers, security wasn’t a problem. But once multiple users could gain access to data from unprotected locations, anyone with certain skills could hack into the network — and, once inside, roam at will, pilfering unclassified and secret files alike. Mr. Ware’s warnings went unheeded for decades, though he remained a frequent consultant. (He died in 2013, at the age of 93.)
In 1980, Lawrence Lasker and Walter Parkes, former Yale classmates in their late 20s, were writing the screenplay for “WarGames.” (It would be nominated for an Oscar but would lose to Horton Foote’s “Tender Mercies.”) A hacker friend had told them about “demon-dialing,” in which a telephone modem searched for other modems by automatically dialing each phone number in an area code and letting it ring twice before proceeding to the next number. If a modem answered, it would squawk; the demon-dialing software would record the number, so the hacker could call back later. In their screenplay, this was how their hero broke into NORAD. But they wondered if this was plausible: Didn’t the military close off its computers to public telephone lines?
Mr. Lasker lived in Santa Monica, a few blocks from RAND. Figuring someone there might be helpful, he called the public affairs office, which put him in touch with Mr. Ware, who invited the pair to his office.
They’d come to the right man. Not only had he long known about the vulnerability of computer networks, but he’d also helped design the software for the real NORAD computer. And Mr. Ware proved remarkably open, even friendly. Listening to the writers’ questions, he waved off their worries. Yes, he told them, the computer was supposed to be closed, but some officers wanted to work from home on weekends, so they’d leave a port open. Anyone could get in, if the right number was dialed.
“The only computer that’s completely secure,” Mr. Ware told them with a mischievous smile, “is a computer that no one can use.”
Ware gave the writers the confidence to go ahead with their project. It’s fitting that the scenario of “WarGames” — which aroused Reagan’s curiosity and led to the first national policy on reducing the vulnerability of computers — owed a crucial debt to the man who’d first warned that they were vulnerable.
Meanwhile, Reagan’s directive hit a roadblock. It put the National Security Agency in charge of securing all of the nation’s computer servers and networks — government, business and personal. The agency had been established in 1952 to intercept foreign communications; it was expressly barred from spying on Americans. Representative Jack Brooks, a Texas Democrat and a fiery civil-liberties advocate, wasn’t about to let a classified presidential decree blur the distinction. He sponsored and got passed a law overriding that directive.
The main author of Reagan’s NSDD-145 was Donald Latham, the Pentagon’s liaison to the National Security Agency — and a former N.S.A. analyst himself. General Vessey had assigned him to answer Reagan’s question on “WarGames” (Could something like this really happen?). Mr. Latham answered as he did (The situation is much worse than you think.) because he knew that the N.S.A. had long been hacking into the communications systems of the Soviet Union and China — and what we were doing to them, they could someday do to us.
Mr. Ware had been among the first to draw this conclusion. Mr. Latham knew about it early on because the two were longtime friends, Mr. Ware having served on the N.S.A.’s scientific advisory board. The N.S.A. was the most secretive branch of the American intelligence community. Reagan’s screening of “WarGames” brought Mr. Ware’s concerns into high policy-making circles for the first time. And it sparked the first public controversy over the tensions between security and privacy on the Internet, as well as the first public power struggle about the subject between the N.S.A. and Congress — a debate and a struggle that persist today.
Fred Kaplan is the author of “Dark Territory: The Secret History of Cyber War,” due out March 1.
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/02/21/movie ... -hack.html
BTW one of the screenwriters of War Games (Lawrence Lasker) is mentioned in the piece below by Alex Cox as being in the back pocket of the CIA...Spiro C. Thiery » Wed Dec 26, 2012 5:55 pm wrote:http://www.alexcox.com/blog.htmTONY SCOTT'S SUICIDE NOTE
The Scott brothers, Ridley and Tony, lived in the north of England at the time of the Vietnam War. So did I. Britain didn't send troops to Vietnam and so Ridley, Tony and I didn't have to worry about being drafted and sent to die. But that vicious and immoral conflict played nightly on our televisions: it was the only non-sanitized war of our lifetime. It left many people - me included - with contempt for the CIA - which ran assassination and torture operations such as the Phoenix Program - and for the whole political/military/industrial machine.
My reaction was not uncommon. The United States and Europe are quite different in that in the US there is a nominal culture of respect for the military (though in practice it is the employment option only of the poor, invariably avoided by the rich and middle class), whereas in Europe armies and uniforms are widely disliked. Most of my generation grew up distrustful of governments, opposed to the military and to the creeps and provocateurs who spied on the peace movement. Remember The Clash song, The Call Up? It is an overt call to refuse to serve in anybody's army. Remember Strummer singing Straight To Hell? "There ain't no need for you..."
The Scotts went down a different path. They made commercials, and when they moved to the States became absorbed intothe Pentagon's Hollywood cheer-leading machine. The bros created glossy, highly dynamic recruitment propaganda like TOP GUN and BLACK HAWK DOWN, and - in the case of Tony - torture propaganda in the form of MAN ON FIRE.
So I wonder as to the contents of the various suicide notes Tony Scott left before jumping off that bridge. For a police force famous for leaking celebrity gossip, the LAPD has been close-mouthed about the matter. Perhaps the notes were merely tender messages to his family. Perhaps they were long screeds condemning the Hollywood studios for being a duplicitious, blacklisting mafia cartel. Or - and this is what I hope - perhaps they have been kept secret because they are a mea culpa: an apology for the years Scott wasted his talents working for the Pentagon and the CIA, promoting torture and war.
David Robb's Operation Hollywood is still the key text regarding the entertainment industryand the Pentagon. It is an important book, citing numerous examples of how studio producers, directors, and writers changed the content of their scripts in order to gain free tanks, battleships, and marines. Recently, three other books have appeared which begin to give a picture of how the CIA has shaped the cinema, and the careers of filmmakers.
The best of these books is the most general: Frances Stonor Saunders' Cultural Cold War (in England its title is Who Paid The Piper?). This is a broad look at how CIA money was used to influence the arts. It explains how the work of a talentless boozer, Jackson Pollock, found its way into museums owned by the Rockefellers, and thence onto gallery walls all over the US. Pollock's slap-dash canvases were bought and sold - at US taxpayers' expense - to show that American art was "better" than the crude naturalism which Russians supposedly preferred. Unfortunately, most Americans prefer crude naturalism, as do I: given a choice between a Pollock or a Norman Rockwell I would gaze on the Rockwell any day. Heck, I'd rather spend an afternoon in the Thomas Kinkaide store.
But intel influence didn't end with paintings. For some reason the spooks hated the writer Howard Fast, and managed to get him blacklisted by the American publishing industry. FBI agents visited Little, Brown and seven other publishers to persuade them not to publish Fast's great popular novel, Spartacus. Alfred Knopf sent the manuscript back unopened, saying he wouldn't read the work of "a traitor". Fast, a Jew, was no traitor: he served time in jail rather than "name names" to the House Un-American Activities Committee. And when Kirk Douglas made a film of Spartacus, he gave the screenwriting assignment to Dalton Trumbo, another blacklisted writer who had been jailed rather than betray his friends.
Nevertheless, buoyed by the blacklisting of Fast, the CIA went all out on a massive book-burning binge. A terrified State Department was obliged to remove from American libraries in foreign countries the work of Fast, Dashiell Hammett, Langston Hughes, John Reed, Tom Paine, Thomas Mann, Albert Einstein, and many other authors: Herman Mellville's Moby Dick, magnificently illustrated by Rockwell Kent, was also deemed unAmerican, and removed from the shelves. As Saunders observes, many of the books banned by the State Department had been burned by Hitler's Nazis, too. Some writers became active, witting agents of the CIA - including Peter Matthiessen and James Michener, "who used his career as a writer as cover for his work in eliminating radicals."
But, as Allen Dulles - head of the CIA till he was fired by John F. Kennedy - said, "nobody reads". So the spooks threw a wider net - arranging concerts and art exhibits, coming up with a $20,000 poetry prize for the fascist Ezra Pound (who at the time was in a hospital for the criminally insane), and quickly turning their attention to the propaganda possibilities of film.
According to Saunders, a secret campaign was undertaken by the CIA and Pentagon in 1955, called "Militant Liberty". This was designed to insert the theme of "freedom" into American movies, and to remove any elements which were critical of the United States. In June and July of 1956, representatives of the Joint Chiefs of Staff met with a group of Hollywood acolytes which included John Ford, Merian C . Cooper, John Wayne, and Ward Bond, to promote the illegal domestic propaganda program. A producer named C.V. Whitney, not coincidentally the cousin of CIA agent Tracey Barnes, signed on and made THE SEARCHERS (in the light of which we might view the film as an anti-Communist parable, with "redskins" standing in for "reds").
Saunders also observes that when, in 1946, Ford and Cooper set up their independent production company, Argosy, the principal investors were all intelligence men: William Donovan (former head of the OSS), Ole Doering, David Bruce and William Vanderbilt. C.D. Jackson, a CIA agent and vice president of Time, listed as helpful "friends" Cecil B. DeMille; Spyros P. Skouros and Darryl Zanuck at Fox; Nicholas Shenk, president of MGM; producer Dore Schary; Barney Balaban, president of Paramount; Harry and Jack Warner; James R. Grainger, president of RKO; Milton Rackmil, president of Universal; Harry Cohn, president of Columbia; Herbert Yates, head of Republic Pictures; and, inevitably, Walt and Roy Disney.
If Jackson's claim is true, then all the studios except United Artists were in the CIA's pocket by 1954. But CIA influence didn't stop with studio heads. A CIA agent, Carleton Alsop, worked undercover at Paramount, where he prepared lists of actors and technicians to be blacklisted, ordered script changes, and shut down films of which he disapproved. Alsop was quite powerful: he killed the project GIANT at Paramount because it was unflattering to rich Texans and depicted racism against Mexicans.
How many other studios had in-house CIA censors isn't clear: but it's unlikely that Carleton Alsop worked all alone.
Daniel J. Leab's Orwell Subverted deals with the first feature fully-funded by the CIA, ANIMAL FARM. As anyone who has seen it knows, ANIMAL FARM is an unsuccessful movie. The animation is reasonable, but the end - in which the animals rise up and overthrow their Soviet-Pig oppressors - contradicts Orwell's novel and the purpose of the parable. Reading Leab's book one cannot help but note how like studio executives the film's CIA "investors" were: they had no concept of filmmaking, or storytelling, but they were certainly full of ideas, demanding new scenes in which "a sheepdog, walking beside a kindly farmer, hears word of the revolt and laughs it off; so also does a plough horse, driven by another kindly farmer."
Leab has actually unearthed the stupid notes the CIA execs gave to their underlings: like David Robb he has found real material showing exactly how the spooks went about constructing their propaganda film. Years later, does it matter? ANIMAL FARM did not do well. But the filmmakers - John Halas and Joy Batchelor - were paid by the CIA to make a feature, something no other British animators could afford to do. Thereafter they received work from the BBC and the commercials industry. When I was young, animation from the Halas and Batchelor studio dominated British television. There was no other notable British company in the business till Ardman came along. That the CIA "set up" Halas and Batchelor as feature filmmakers, and that the BBC continued to promote them, gave them an incredible advantage over other animators, and set the rather mediocre tone of British animation for twenty years.
Per Saunders, the CIA was also behind the production of NINETEEN EIGHTY-FOUR, pumping at least $100,000 into the picture via the "US Information Agency". Again, Orwell's bleak vision didn't satisfy the spooks, and the end had to be changed: in fact two endings were shot, one for American audiences, and another for the British - in which Winston Smith is gunned down shouting, "Down with Big Brother!" Ironically, the film starred Michael Redgrave, one of 125 people Orwell had shopped to the British secret service for crimes such as Communism, Jewishness, or being gay.
Tricia Jenkins' CIA in Hollywood isn't as comprehensive as one might like. Partially this is due to the spooks' inherent secrecy and refusal to reveal the details of the deals they make with Hollywood filmmakers. But it's also due to a certain authorial naivete regarding the CIA. Jenkins refers to five aspects of the public's perception of the CIA: 1) that the Agency assassinates people, 2) that it is staffed with rogue operatives, 3) that it fails to take care of its assets, and 4) that it is morally ambiguous, and 5) that it is marked by buffoonery and ineffectiveness.
This is an incomplete list. The fact that the CIA assassinates people is not in any doubt: CIA-directed drones perform extra-judicial killings for us on a weekly basis. But what about the DRUG DEALING? After assassination and torture, the biggest complaint, made consistently against the CIA since the Vietnam War, is that it is involved in the international drug trade, and uses the traffic and resale of illegal drugs to enrich its operatives and fund its "black" operations. The reader may consult Alfred McCoy's Politics of Heroin in South East Asia, or Henrik Kruger's The Great Heroin Coup (for chapter and verse detail of CIA involvement in the heroin trade), or Cockburn and StClair's Whiteout, or Gary Webb's Dark Alliance (for the same on CIA complicity in the importation and sale of cocaine). The CIA inspector general, Frederick Hitz, was unable to disprove any of Gary Webb's reporting (the unfortunate Webb was fired from his job, and committed suicide).
Even if Jenkins doesn't believe that the CIA smuggles drugs, the accusations are there, they've been there for a long time, and they're backed up with evidence. A book dealing with the reputation of the Agency and its manipulation of the media should address the issue of alleged CIA drug dealing. This is not done.
This is strange, as it was with Tim Weiner's Legacy of Ashes - a supposed history of the CIA which also ignored the Agency's "drug problem". This is a re-writing of history, in which some of the worst blowback from US intelligence activities is simply ignored. The Hollywood movie AIR AMERICA - based on a book about CIA drug dealing operations - airbrushed the drugs out, but not all pictures dealing with US intelligence have done likewise. What about that highly intelligent thriller WHO'LL STOP THE RAIN, in which a merchant marine played by Nick Nolte is pursued by CIA agents who want their cut of his drugs operation? Not worthy of mention? It is a good fiilm.
CIA in Hollywood also suffers from an incomplete index, which covers only a handful of the names and motion pictures cited, and an incomplete bibliography, which doesn't contain all the books the author cites.
Jenkins makes an excellent point that by choosing to support certain films and to deny other filmmakers assistance, the CIA is violating the First Amendment to the Constitution. And since the Agency is not allowed to propagandize domestically, its support of Hollywood films and TV shows like 24 is a violation of its own Charter. Not that the CIA is all that worried, I suspect. As Robb observed, the Pentagon, the FBI, the Secret Service and numerous other federal agencies breach the First Amendment in exactly the same way. And Hollywood - an illegal cartel - is unlikely to utter any protest. The CIA has even acted as a TV distributor - pumping episodes of DYNASTY into East Germany during the Cold War "in order to sell those residents on capitalism and the luxury life it could afford."
For your edification, here follow the actors, directors, writers, producers and studio execs who the author links to the CIA, usually found 1) visiting CIA headquarters to party with the spooks, 2) taking instructions from CIA, or 3) actively helping to encourage CIA recruitment. Tony Scott heads the list: Jenkins reports that CIA was particularly fond of his masterpiece TOP GUN, "the single best recruiting tool the navy - and specifically naval aviation - ever had" and "was looking for a project that could help them do something similar."
Tony Scott, RIP; John Ford; John Wayne; Cecil B. DeMille; Darryl Zanuck; Luigi Luraschi (head of domestic and foreign censorship at Paramount in the 1950s); Joseph Mankiewicz; John Chambers and Bob Sidell (studio makeup men); Jack Myers; David Houle; Scott Valentine (VP of Sony Pictures); Jack Gilardi (ICM agency); Rick Nicita (CAA agency); Ron Meyer (COO of Universal); Matt Corman; Chris Ord; Kristy Swanson; Tim Matheson; Roger and Robert Towne; Tom Berenger; Ron Silver; Michael Frost Beckner; Jennifer Garner; Jeff Apple; Roger Birnbaum; Colin Farrell; Ben Affleck; Phil Alden Robinson; Lawrence Lasker; Mark Bowden; Mike Myers; Kevin and Michael Bacon; Mace Neufeld; J.J. Abrams; Paul Attanasio; Doug Liman; David Arata; Kiefer Sutherland; Tom Cruise.
(Not all Hollywood actors are thus inclined. Post 9-11, some have spoken out against CIA and government spying: Jenkins lists Al Pacino, Martin Sheen, Hector Elizondo, Richard Dreyfuss, Holly Hunter, Kristin Davis, Samuel L. Jackson and Jake Gyllenhaal as standing up for the American Civil Liberties Union in a series of advertisements.)
MinM » Wed Apr 13, 2016 2:09 pm wrote:vondardanelle » Tue Apr 01, 2008 11:56 am wrote:"SETEC ASTRONOMY" was from that movie "Sneakers" with Robert Redford. In themovie it was word jumble of the password for something. Un-jumbled it was: Too Many Secrets
On the dvd commentary the writers and producers of Sneakers claim to have downloaded a shareware program that randomizes anagrams. They used the anagram generator for the opening credits sequence too. Robert Redford translates to Fort Red Border...
@vicenews Jun 23
A Senate committee wants to crack down on spy agencies' cozy relationship with Hollywood
Nat Geo Channel @NatGeoChannel
Ronald Reagan faces off against Jimmy Carter during the presidential debates, now on #KillingReagan.
Global Research @CRG_CRM Jul 7
Documents Expose How Hollywood Promotes War on Behalf of the Pentagon, CIA and NSA http://ow.ly/v2jV30dqAMc
Washington DC’s role behind the scenes in Hollywood goes deeper than you think
Hugh Manatee Wins » Fri Aug 03, 2007 1:57 pm wrote:You don't think that something that worked back then wouldn't be done now, do you?
James Corbett @corbettreport
How Clooney was asked by international prosecutor to spy on Colonel Gaddafi in Libya #NewWorldNextWeek http://ibt.uk/A6tEm?utm_source=social&u ... ya-1642304 …
MinM » Mon May 22, 2017 8:07 pm wrote:
viewtopic.php?f=33&t=12707@SanhoTree May 21
Sanho Tree Retweeted MuckRock
In 2001, CBS finally gave the CIA their own show under George W. Bush's Administration. The series was called The Agency.
It was part of our liberal shoot down policy under the drug war. The series rewrote the incident to blame FARC guerrillas for tricking CIA.
By the time the episode aired, the 9/11 attack had happened and it sucked all the oxygen out of the story. Beware of "dramatized" history!
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