Special Report: The accelerated amplification of America’s bourgeois media began in the 1980s as the Reagan administering accommodating adopted activity initiatives with bourgeois media executives, including Rupert Murdoch, and afresh austere abroad authoritative hurdles, letters Robert Parry.
By Robert Parry
The Reagan administering pulled bourgeois media admiral Rupert Murdoch and Richard Mellon Scaife into a CIA-organized “perception management” operation which aimed Cold War-style advertising at the American bodies in the 1980s, according to declassified U.S. government records.
Although some annal apropos to Murdoch abide classified, several abstracts that accept been arise announce that he and billionaire Scaife were advised sources of cyberbanking and added abutment for Admiral Ronald Reagan’s awkward Central American policies, including the CIA’s buried war in Nicaragua.
A active force abaft conception of Reagan’s amazing advertising authority was CIA Administrator William Casey who accomplished one of the CIA’s top buried activity specialists, Walter Raymond Jr., to the National Security Council to baby-sit the project. According to the documents, Murdoch was brought into the operation in 1983 aback he was still an Australian aborigine and his media authority was abundant abate than it is today.
Charles Wick, administrator of the U.S. Advice Agency, abiding at atomic two contiguous affairs amid Murdoch and Reagan, the aboriginal on Jan. 18, 1983, aback the administering was lining up clandestine costs for its advertising campaign, according to annal at the Reagan presidential library in Simi Valley, California. That affair additionally included apostle and political accessible Roy Cohn and his law accomplice Thomas Bolan.
The Oval Office affair amid Reagan and Murdoch came aloof bristles canicule afterwards NSC Advisor William Clark acclaimed in a Jan. 13, 1983 announcement to Reagan the charge for non-governmental money to beforehand the project. “We will advance a book for accepting clandestine funding,” Clark wrote, as cited in an abstruse abstract affiliate of the aldermanic Iran-Contra investigation.
Clark then told the Admiral that “Charlie Wick has offered to booty the lead. We may accept to alarm on you to accommodated with a accumulation of abeyant donors.”
The abstracts advance that Murdoch was anon beheld as a antecedent for that funding. In an Aug. 9, 1983 announcement accretion up the after-effects of a Casey-organized affair with bristles arch ad admiral apropos how to “sell” Reagan’s advancing behavior in Central America, Raymond referred to Murdoch as if he already were allowance out.
In a announcement to Clark, advantaged “Private Breadth Abutment for Central American Program,” Raymond criticized a added acceptable White House beat affairs headed by Faith Whittlesey as “preaching to the converted.”
Raymond told Clark that the new activity would absorb a added absolute access aimed at persuading a majority of Americans to aback Reagan’s Central American policies, which included abutment for bourgeois regimes in Guatemala and El Salvador as able-bodied as the Contra rebels angry the apostle Sandinista government of Nicaragua.
“We charge move out into the average breadth of the American accessible and draw them into the ‘support’ column,” Raymond wrote. “A additional amalgamation of proposals accord with bureau to bazaar the issue, abundantly because accomplish utilizing accessible relations specialists or agnate professionals to advice address the message.”
To advance the project’s affairs for success, Raymond wrote, “we recommended allotment via Freedom House or some added anatomy that has believability in the political center. Wick, via Murdoch, may be able to draw bottomward added funds for this effort.”
Raymond included agnate advice in a abstracted announcement to Wick in which Raymond acclaimed that “via Murdock [sic] may be able to draw bottomward added funds” to abutment the initiative. (Raymond afterwards told me that he was apropos to Rupert Murdoch.)
In a March 7, 1984 memo about the “‘Private Funders’ Project,” Raymond referred to Murdoch afresh in discussing a appeal for money from longtime CIA-connected announcer Brian Crozier, who was “looking for clandestine breadth allotment to assignment on the catechism of ‘anti-Americanism’ overseas.”
Raymond wrote: “I am pursuaded [sic] it is a cogent connected appellation problem. It is additionally the affectionate of affair that Ruppert [sic] and Jimmy ability acknowledge absolutely to. Please attending over the assemblage [of affidavit from Crozier] and lets [sic] altercate if and aback there ability be added altercation with our friends.”
Crozier, who died in 2012, had a connected history of operating in the atramentous apple of CIA propaganda. He was administrator of Forum Apple Features, which was set up in 1966 by the Congress for Cultural Freedom, which accustomed buried allotment from the CIA. Crozier additionally accustomed in his account befitting some of his best belief for the CIA.
At atomic one added certificate accompanying to Murdoch’s assignment with USIA Administrator Wick charcoal classified, according to the National Archives. Murdoch’s Account Corp. has not responded to requests for animadversion about the Reagan-era documents.
Murdoch, who became a aborigine aborigine of the United States in 1985 to accommodated a authoritative claim that U.S. TV stations charge be endemic by Americans, benefited from his aing ties to both U.S. and British officialdom.
On Monday, the UK’s Independent arise that Ed Richards, the backward arch of the British media authoritative bureau Ofcom, accused British government assembly of assuming discrimination to Murdoch’s companies.
Richards said he was “surprised” by the informality, accurateness and abundance of acquaintance amid admiral and ministers during the bootless bid by Murdoch’s Account Corp. for the accessory arrangement BSkyB in 2011. The accord was alone aback it was apparent that journalists at Murdoch’s Account of the Apple abridged had afraid the buzz of murdered babe Milly Dowler and others.
“What afraid anybody about it not aloof me was absolutely how aing it was and the adroitness of it,” Richards said, acknowledging what had been broadly arise apropos Murdoch’s access to able British politicians dating aback at atomic to the administering of Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in the 1980s. The Reagan abstracts advance that Murdoch congenital ogously aing ties to arch U.S. politicians in the aforementioned era.
In 1983, Murdoch’s ascent media authority was still based in Australia with alone a few U.S. properties, such as the Star abridged and the New York Post. But he was eyeing amplification into the U.S. media market. In 1984, he bought a pale in 20th Century Fox and afresh six Metromedia television stations, which would anatomy the basis of Fox Broadcasting Company, which was founded on Oct. 9, 1986.
At the time, Murdoch and added media moguls were lobbying for a alleviation of regulations from the Federal Communications Commission, a ambition that Reagan shared. Under FCC Chairman Mark Fowler, the Reagan administering undertook a cardinal of accomplish favorable to Murdoch’s interests, including accretion the cardinal of TV stations that any distinct commodity could own from seven in 1981 to 12 in 1985.
In 1987, the “Fairness Doctrine,” which appropriate political antithesis in broadcasting, was eliminated, which enabled Murdoch to avant-garde a added advancing abnegation on his TV network. In the mid-1990s, Murdoch broadcast his political ability by founding the neoconservative Weekly Standard in 1995 and Fox Account on cable in 1996. At Fox News, Murdoch has assassin array of arresting politicians, mostly Republicans, putting them on his amount as commentators.
Last decade, Murdoch connected to aggrandize his ability into U.S. accumulation media, accepting DirecTV and the cyberbanking account behemothic Dow Jones, including The Wall Street Journal, America’s arch business account journal.
Richard Mellon Scaife acclimatized his media access on account of Reagan and the bourgeois account in a altered way. While the begat of the Mellon banking, oil and aluminum affluence did broadcast a bourgeois bi-weekly in Pittsburgh, the Tribune Review, Scaife mostly served as a cyberbanking benefactor for bourgeois journalists and anticipate tanks.
Indeed, Scaife was one of the aboriginal financiers of what emerged as a bourgeois counter-establishment in media and academia, a longstanding ambition of key Republicans, including Admiral Richard Nixon who accustomed the accent of advertising as a political weapon.
According to Nixon’s arch of agents H.R. Haldeman, as arise in The Haldeman Diaries, one of Nixon’s pet account was to body a arrangement of loyal conservatives in positions of influence. The Admiral was “pushing afresh on activity of architecture our enactment in press, business, education, etc.,” Haldeman wrote in one access on Sept. 12, 1970.
Financed by affluent bourgeois foundations and affluent appropriate interests, Nixon’s abstraction helped angle backroom in favor of the American Right with Richard Mellon Scaife one of the project’s big-money godfathers. By application ancestors foundations, such as Sarah Scaife and Carthage, Scaife aing with added arch bourgeois foundations to armamentarium anticipate tanks, such as the Heritage Foundation, which Scaife helped barrage in 1973.
In 1978, Nixon’s acquaintance and Treasury Secretary William Simon provided added catalyst to this growing machine, declaring in his book, Time for Truth: “Funds generated by business … charge blitz by the multimillion to the aid of alternative … to carry badly bare funds to scholars, amusing scientists, writers and journalists who accept the accord amid political and bread-and-er liberty.”
With Reagan’s commencement in 1981 and Casey’s alternative as CIA administrator Scaife and added bourgeois ideologues were in position to absorb their clandestine allotment with U.S. Government money in afterward of the administration’s geopolitical goals, including authoritative abiding the American bodies would not breach ranks as abounding did over the Vietnam War.
Building the Operation
On Nov. 4, 1982, Raymond, afterwards his alteration from CIA to the NSC agents but while still a CIA officer, wrote to NSC Advisor Clark about the “Democracy Action and Advice Programs,” advertence that “Bill Casey asked me to canyon on the afterward anticipation apropos your affair with Dick Scaife, Dave Abshire [then a affiliate of the President’s Adopted Intelligence Advisory Board], and Co.
“Casey had cafeteria with them today and discussed the charge to get affective in the accepted breadth of acknowledging our accompany about the world. By this ogue he is including both ‘building democracy’ and allowance activate all-embracing media programs. The DCI [Casey] is additionally anxious about deepening accessible advice organizations in the United States such as Freedom House.
“A ytical allotment of the addle is a austere accomplishment to accession clandestine funds to accomplish momentum. Casey’s allocution with Scaife and Co. suggests they would be actual accommodating to cooperate. Advance that you agenda White House absorption in clandestine abutment for the Democracy initiative.”
In consecutive years, Freedom House emerged as a arch yzer of Nicaragua’s Sandinista government, which Reagan and Casey were gluttonous to aish by covertly acknowledging the Contra rebels. Freedom House additionally became a above almsman of money from the U.S.-funded National Endowment for Democracy, which was founded in 1983 beneath the awning of the Casey-Raymond project.
The role of the CIA in these initiatives was buried but never far from the surface. A Dec. 2, 1982 agenda addressed to “Bud,” a advertence to chief NSC official Robert “Bud” McFarlane, declared a appeal from Raymond for a abrupt meeting. “When he [Raymond] alternate from Langley [CIA headquarters], he had a proposed abstract letter re $100 M democ[racy] proj[ect],” the agenda said.
While Casey pulled the strings on this project, the CIA administrator instructed White House admiral to adumbrate the CIA’s role. “Obviously we actuality [at CIA] should not get out advanced in the development of such an organization, nor should we arise to be a sponsor or advocate,” Casey said in one undated letter to then-White House advisor Edwin Meese III as Casey apprenticed conception of a “National Endowment.”
On Jan. 21, 1983, Raymond adapted Clark about the project, which additionally was extensive out to assembly from added bourgeois foundations, including Les Lenkowsky of Smith-Richardson, Michael Joyce of Olin and Dan McMichael of Mellon-Scaife. “This is advised to advance a broader accumulation of bodies who will abutment alongside initiatives constant with Administering needs and desires,” Raymond wrote.
Bashing Teresa Heinz
One archetype of how Scaife’s bi-weekly anon helped the Reagan administering can be apparent in clippings from the Tribune-Review that I begin in Raymond’s files. On April 21, 1983, the bi-weekly appear a amalgamation of belief suggesting adulterous left-wing access amid groups against to nuclear war.
The articles leave little agnosticism that Scaife’s bi-weekly is suggesting that these anti-war activists are communists or antipathetic adolescent travelers. One banderole reads: “Reds Woo Some U.S. Peace Leaders.”
Another commodity cites an allegation from one agent in the 1950s, afterwards hearings on foundation grants “to abundant Communists and Communist-front organizations,” that “Here lies the adventure of how Communism and Socialism are financed in the U.S. area they get their money.” The 1983 commodity afresh asks: “Is history repeating itself?”
Ironically, one of the philanthropists who is singled out in these red-baiting accessories is Teresa Heinz, afresh affiliated to Sen. John Heinz, R-Pennsylvania, who died in a 1991 alike crash. In 1995, Teresa Heinz affiliated Sen. John Kerry, D-Massachusetts, who is currently Secretary of State.
The authoritative role of Casey and Raymond in this calm advertising attack aloft apropos about the amends of accepting two chief CIA admiral accommodating in a arrangement to administer the perceptions of the American people.
Both in centralized abstracts and a degradation to the aldermanic Iran-Contra committee, Raymond fabricated bright his ache about the accessible acknowledged abuse from his and Casey’s roles. Raymond formally accommodated from the CIA in April 1983, so, he said, “there would be no catechism whatsoever of any contagion of this.”
That acuteness was additionally reflected in press advice able in case a anchorman acclaimed Raymond’s CIA accomplishments and the problems it presented to the “public diplomacy” effort. If addition challenged columnist letters that asserted “there is no CIA captivation in the Accessible Diplomacy Program” and afresh asked “isn’t Walt Raymond, a CIA employee, complex heavily?” the assigned acknowledgment was:
“Walter Raymond is a affiliate of the National Security Council staff. In the accomplished he has formed for Defense, CIA and State. It is accurate that in the determinative stages of the effort, Walt Raymond contributed abounding advantageous ideas. It is acrid that he was one of those who was best assertive that there be no CIA captivation in this affairs in any way.
“Indeed, it is a acclaim to the Bureau that it has fatigued throughout that the United States care to be absolutely accessible about the programs it puts in abode to abetment in the development of autonomous institutions and that none of these programs should appear beneath the advocacy of the CIA. They do not appetite to be complex in managing these programs and will not be. We accept annihilation to adumbrate here.”
If a anchorman apprenticed apropos area Raymond aftermost worked, the acknowledgment was to be: “He retired from CIA. He is a abiding affiliate of the National Security Council.” And, if apprenticed about Raymond’s duties, the scripted acknowledgment was: “His duties there are classified.” (Raymond’s aftermost job at the CIA was Administrator of the Buried Activity Agents with a specialty in advertising and disinformation.)
Beyond how Raymond’s “classified duties” contradict the affirmation that “we accept annihilation to adumbrate here,” there was a added ambiguous aspect of the columnist guidance: it didn’t acknowledgment the key role of CIA Administrator Casey in both acclimation and administering the activity and it appropriate that Raymond’s role had been bound to alms “many advantageous ideas” aback he was the hands-on, circadian administrator of the operation.
Casey’s Hidden Hand
Casey’s abstruse role in the advertising arrangement connected able-bodied into 1986, as Raymond connected to accelerate advance letters to his old boss, alike as Raymond ashen in one announcement about the charge “to get [Casey] out of the loop.”
The “public diplomacy” operation was “the affectionate of affair which [Casey] had a ample all-embracing absorption in,” Raymond shrugged during his Iran-Contra deposition. He afresh offered the alibi that Casey undertook this allegedly actionable arrest in calm backroom “not so abundant in his CIA hat, but in his adviser to the admiral hat.”
Though the Casey-Raymond teamwork concluded with the acknowledgment of the Iran-Contra aspersion in backward 1986 and with Casey’s afterlife on May 6, 1987, its bequest connected with Scaife and added affluent right-wingers allotment brainy media that adequate the flanks of Admiral Reagan, his almsman Admiral George H.W. Bush and added Republicans of that era.
For instance, Scaife helped armamentarium the assignment of Steven Emerson, who played a key role in “discrediting” investigations into whether Reagan’s 1980 attack had sabotaged Admiral Jimmy Carter’s earnest negotiations with Iran to accretion an bend in that cardinal election. [See Consortiumnews.com’s “Unmasking October Surprise Debunker.”]
Scaife additionally helped accounts the alleged “Arkansas Project” that pushed absorbed and artificial scandals to accident the admiral of Bill Clinton. [See Consortiumnews.com’s “Starr-gate: Cracks on the Right.”]
Walter Raymond Jr. died on April 16, 2003. Richard Mellon Scaife died on July 4, 2014. But Rupert Murdoch, now 83, charcoal one of the best able media abstracts on earth, continuing to apply unparalleled access through his ascendancy of Fox Account and his all-inclusive media authority that stretches about the globe.
Investigative anchorman Robert Parry bankrupt abounding of the Iran-Contra belief for The Associated Columnist and Newsweek in the 1980s. You can buy his latest book, America’s Stolen Narrative, either in print here or as an e-book (from Amazon and barnesandnoble.com). You additionally can adjustment Robert Parry’s leash on the Bush Ancestors and its access to assorted bourgeois agents for alone $34. The leash includes America’s Stolen Narrative. For capacity on this offer, bang here..
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