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CIA Leaders 1946-2005

CIA Leaders 1946-2005

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Published by Edi Santoso

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Published by: Edi Santoso on Jul 21, 2009
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05/11/2014

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In selecting his DCI, Reagan signaled that he was serious about supporting a stronger
national intelligence effort. Like Carter, he chose to have a new DCI replace the incumbent,
and he wasted little time in naming his national election campaign manager, William J.
Casey.2

Casey was a veteran of the wartime OSS, and throughout his subsequent business
career he had sustained a deep interest in foreign affairs. He had served on PFIAB, and he
advised Reagan on national security affairs in the post-election period. He wanted to be sec-
retary of state, but he contented himself with the silver medal he was awarded. Reagan
placed him in his cabinet (a first for a DCI), and Casey believed his post offered him a plat-
form for shaping national security policy as well as providing intelligence to the president
and other members of the NSC.

1

Notation made by Casey in preparation for a briefing of President Reagan in early 1984 about how intelligence had
improved during his administration.

2

Prior to the 1970s, the pattern of DCI appointments had indicated the position was not expected to turn over like cabinet
positions when a new administration came to power. Although President Eisenhower had named a new DCI when he took
office, he chose Truman’s DDCI, and the incumbent he replaced was appointed to be number two at the Department of
State in the new administration. Presidents Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, and Ford kept the DCIs they inherited when they
took office. Presidents Carter and Reagan, however, named new DCIs at the outset of their administrations, seemingly
changing the norm. Since then, no consistent pattern has held. Presidents George H. W. Bush and George W. Bush
retained initially the DCIs they inherited, while President Clinton appointed a different DCI.

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Senator Barry Goldwater (R-AZ) wanted VAdm. Bobby Ray Inman, USN, then head of
NSA, to be the new DCI. He went so far as to plead his case with the president-elect but in
the end accepted that Reagan’s mind was made up. Reagan personally recruited Inman to be
Casey’s deputy, and to many the DCI and DDCI nominations seemed to be a package deal.3

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