144. Minutes of the Second Meeting of the Intelligence Advisory Board0


  • Rear Admiral Sidney W. Souers, Director of Central Intelligence, in the Chair
  • Members Present
  • Mr. Ludwell L. Montague (representing Mr. Alfred McCormack, Special Assistant to the Secretary of State in Charge of Research and Intelligence)
  • Lt. General Hoyt S. Vandenberg, Assistant Chief of Staff, G-2, WDGS
  • Commodore Charles J. Rend (Representing Rear Admiral Thomas B. Inglis, Chief of Naval Intelligence)
  • Brig. General George C. McDonald, Assistant Chief of Air Staff, Intelligence
  • Mr. J. Edgar Hoover, Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation
  • Also Present
  • Mr. Kingman Douglass, Central Intelligence Group
  • Colonel Louis J. Fortier, USA, Central Intelligence Group
  • Captain Thomas F. Cullen, USNR, Central Intelligence Group
  • Colonel Charles P. Nicholas, USA, Central Intelligence Group
  • Colonel Harry F. Cunningham, USA, Central Intelligence Group
  • Colonel Willis A. Perry, USA, Central Intelligence Group
  • Secretariat
  • Mr. James S. Lay, Jr., Secretary, National Intelligence Authority
  • Mr. J.K. Tibby, Assistant Secretary

1. Policy on Liquidation of the Strategic Services Unit

The directives proposed for submittal to the National Intelligence Authority were read and minor amendments agreed upon.

Admiral Souers emphasized that the intention was not to absorb SSU as an entity within the Central Intelligence Group, but rather to assure the careful liquidation of the Unit, over a period of months, so as to utilize its services during that period and to permit the preservation and transfer to permanent departments and agencies of SSU elements found to be of continuing usefulness.

General Vandenberg asked whether under the contemplated liquidation procedure, the G–2 of U.S. Forces, in the China Theater would be protected from the liquidation of the SSU unit now in China before other arrangements could be made by G–2 to provide for those operations considered essential by G–2.

Admiral Souers said that this was an example of the departmental interests which the proposed liquidation directives were designed to protect. He recalled that General Vandenberg had recently forwarded to C.I.G. a plan for post-war intelligence in China as prepared by G–2, USFCT. In the course of planning post-war intelligence coverage in that area, it might be found desirable to charge C.I.G. itself with responsibility for filling certain gaps. However, C.I.G. could not enter such fields directly except by authorization of the National Intelligence Authority, and in the meantime it would be the task of the Director of Central Intelligence to insure that no available and necessary services were discarded, through liquidation of SSU, until services as good or better could be provided to take their place.

Commodore Rend proposed a revision of the paper designed to clarify its language, but after Admiral Souers explained the reasons for the present language of the paper, Commodore Rend expressed his agreement.

Mr. Hoover said he was glad to see that the directives provided for gradual rather than abrupt liquidation, since this would more readily permit the retention of valuable elements by the Government. He thought the objectives were very satisfactorily expressed.

After concluding discussion,

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The Intelligence Advisory Board:

Concurred in the draft directives as amended (subsequently submitted to the National Intelligence Authority as N.I.A. 3).1

2. C.I.G. Weekly Summary

Admiral Souers reported that plans for issuance of a C.I.G. Weekly Summary were in hand. The Central Reports Staff had worked up several practice issues. However, it was clear that if the Weekly were to fulfill its real function—and be more than a rehash of preceding Daily Summaries—two or three seasoned intelligence officers with specialized experience would have to be added to the staff. He was attempting to strengthen the present staff with this in mind, by negotiations with the several departments.

The Intelligence Advisory Board:

Took note of the above comments.

3. J.I.C. Papers

The Director said that arrangements had been made with the Joint Intelligence Committee2 for C.I.G. to receive copies of appropriate J.I.C. papers. In reply the Secretary of J.I.C. had suggested that all C.I.G. papers be furnished to his office for file and for the use of the Joint Intelligence Staff. Admiral Souers was willing to send appropriate C.I.G. papers to the Secretary of J.I.C., but felt that many papers of C.I.G. would not be of benefit to J.I.S. and should therefore not be sent.

The Intelligence Advisory Board:

Concurred with Admiral Souers’ proposed policy.

4. Special Agents

General Vandenberg inquired how soon the Central Intelligence Group would be in a position to interview the individuals who are now presenting themselves as prospective special agents abroad. General Vandenberg said there were a number of these candidates, and that he was using a few of them. He is anxious to turn such activities over to the Central Intelligence Group, however, as soon as possible, because of the danger that agents from different agencies may get crossed up in the field.

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Admiral Souers stated that he wanted to be completely prepared to conduct such operations before interviewing or hiring any individuals. He does not want to confuse the permanent program with the existing operations of SSU. One of the biggest problems will be to find the appropriate man to head this operation, who can then utilize the services of these individuals on a professional basis. In the meantime, Admiral Souers would prefer that existing agencies conduct their operations in this field until a permanent program has been decided upon by the N.I.A. and established. He feels that one of the most urgent elements in this program is the use of ordinary business, scientific and professional men and travelers who are going abroad. This will not be a “cloak and dagger” type of operation, but will require careful organization.

General Vandenberg expressed the belief, and Admiral Souers agreed, that all such clandestine operations should be under a single directing head.

The Intelligence Advisory Board:

Took note of the above discussion.

  1. Source: Central Intelligence Agency Historical Files, HS/HC–281. Top Secret. Limited Distribution. The meeting was held at the New War Department Building.
  2. NIA 3 was a draft of NIA Directive No. 4, “Policy on Liquidation of the Strategic Services Unit,” Document 106.
  3. A committee of the Joint Chiefs of Staff responsible for preparing intelligence estimates and studies.