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How ‘Deep Throat’ Took Down Nixon From Inside the FBI

How ‘Deep Throat’ Took Down Nixon From Inside the FBI

Former FBI deputy director William Mark Felt, Sr., age 91, broke his 30-year silence and confirmed in June 2005 that he was “Deep Throat,” the anonymous government source who had leaked crucial information to Washington Post reporters Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward, which helped take down President Richard M. Nixon during the Watergate scandal.

Watergate began in June 1972 when five robbers linked to Nixon’s re-election campaign were caught red-handed wiretapping phones and stealing documents inside the Democratic National Committee’s office in Washington, D.C.’s Watergate office complex.

Nixon – who denied involvement or knowledge of the incident – then participated in an extensive cover-up.

Throughout the 1972 election campaign and beyond, Deep Throat fed Woodward and Bernstein a steady flow of information which exposed Nixon’s knowledge of the scandal.

G. Gordon Liddy connived the Watergate break-in.

The idea to break into the Democratic National Committee’s office and tap their phones was the brainchild of G. Gordon Liddy, Finance Counsel for the Committee for the Reelection of the President (CRP). He took his plan to White House Counsel John Dean and Attorney General John Mitchell, who approved a smaller-scale version of the idea.

The initial break-in and wiretapping went without a hitch; however, when the burglars returned to the scene of the crime to fix some broken wiretaps on June 17, 1972, they were caught red-handed and arrested.

After the arrests, Liddy and his accomplices scrambled to destroy evidence as the Nixon propaganda machine went into full gear. They vehemently denied they, the President or anyone in the White House were involved with the break-in, even though a $25,000 check allotted for Nixon’s campaign mysteriously ended up in the bank account of a real estate firm owned by one of the robbers.

‘Deep Throat’ was No. 2 at the FBI.

At the time of the break-in, Felt was second-in-command at the FBI and in charge of day-to-day operations. He was essentially point man for the FBI investigation into the crime.

Felt and his staff interviewed dozens of CRP members, but the meetings were also attended by White House lawyers. Felt believed transcripts of the interviews were passed on to White House counsel John Dean by acting FBI director Patrick Gray.

Felt knew Nixon was involved in Watergate but after a few months of the investigation being derailed by an uncooperative White House, it seemed his connection would remain a well-guarded secret. Knowing there was much more to the story, Felt took matters into his own hands and began leaking information to Woodward.

Woodward and Bernstein doggedly pursued the scandal.

Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, then both in their 20s, rode the Watergate investigation hard right out of the gate.

According to their books, All the President’s Men and The Secret Man: The Story of Watergate’s Deep Throat, Woodward spoke with Felt 17 times between June 1972 and November 1973, sometimes by phone but also in person at a parking garage in Rosslyn, Virginia, and often using clandestine tactics to keep from being discovered.

Felt never let Woodward or Bernstein quote him directly and at first only confirmed existing leads. As the investigation unfolded, however, he offered some new information.

The moniker “Deep Throat” referred to a controversial but widely viewed pornographic film of the same name that was released in 1972.

VIDEO: Richard Nixon’s Paranoia Leads to Watergate Scandal Richard Nixon’s personality and character issues may have led to his involvement in the Watergate scandal.

Nixon claimed it was just a ‘witch hunt.’

In October of that year, Watergate was finally linked to Nixon when the FBI determined the operation was a massive setup of spying and sabotage by Nixon’s aides to support his re-election.

Woodward and Bernstein kept the pressure on as Nixon’s White House fought back and claimed their ambitious reporting was nothing more than “a witch hunt.”

The White House’s tactics seemed to work, though, and Nixon was re-elected by a landslide in November. Still, much to Nixon’s dismay, the Watergate investigation—with Woodward, Bernstein and Deep Throat at the helm—only escalated.

The White House stonewalled on the Watergate tapes.

As the Watergate burglars and their collaborators were convicted, it was clear Nixon knew much more than he had let on. White House Counsel John Dean and other Nixon aides eventually testified that Nixon had abused his power by ordering the CIA to hinder the FBI’s investigation into the scandal.

It was also revealed that Nixon had recorded every conversation in the Oval Office during his presidency and that the tapes of those conversations would contain proof he had obstructed justice.

A bitter, months-long legal battle over the tapes then ensued between Nixon’s lawyers and Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox. Nixon ordered Cox fired but eventually surrendered some of the tapes. In July 1973, a court order forced him to turn over the remaining recordings.

Knowing they would directly tie him to Watergate – and with impeachment imminent – Nixon resigned the presidency on August 8. In all, 40 people were convicted on felony charges for crimes linked to Watergate.

‘Deep Throat’ stayed in the shadows through it all.

Woodward and Bernstein published All the President’s Men two months before Nixon resigned. The book spurred varying opinions about the identity of Deep Throat.

The White House suspected Felt and as the investigation dragged on, Felt lived in dread of being discovered and losing his job – or worse. But Woodward went all out to protect his source and would continue to safeguard the truth long after the Watergate scandal had ended.

In February 1973, Nixon appointed Gray permanent FBI director. His tenure was short, however, when he was forced to resign after it came to light he had destroyed a file on CIA Officer E. Howard Hunt, one of Liddy’s Watergate co-conspirators. Gray then recommended Felt for the job, but Nixon and his Chief of Staff Alexander Haig were concerned Felt was leaking information to the press and chose William Ruckelshaus instead.

Felt and Ruckelshaus had a strained relationship. In June, Ruckelshaus directly accused Felt of leaking information to The New York Times. On June 22, Felt resigned and ended his 31-year career with the FBI.

In 1978, Felt was indicted for ordering FBI agents to search the homes of Weather Underground members and other leftist groups without a warrant. He was found guilty in 1980 and pardoned by President Ronald Reagan in 1981.

During that time, Felt wrote his memoir and claimed he was not Deep Throat. His wife died in 1984 and he eventually moved to California (where he survived a stroke in 1999).

Mark Felt emerged after three decades.

For 30 years, Felt, Woodward and Bernstein kept Deep Throat’s identity a secret. Even when the story of Watergate was made into the blockbuster movie All the President’s Men starring Robert Redford, Dustin Hoffman and Hal Holbrook, Felt and company stayed mum.

Felt reportedly even denied the truth to his family, friends and closest colleagues. That is, until May 2005 when an ailing Felt announced in a Vanity Fair article, “I’m the guy they used to call Deep Throat.”

Reportedly, Felt’s family had figured out his pseudo-identity and encouraged him to tell the world. Felt struggled with the decision, however, and was concerned about how it would affect the family and his legacy. It wasn’t until his family suggested the truth might help them pay some bills that he agreed to share his story.

Was Deep Throat a patriot or a turncoat?

The reaction to the Vanity Fair article was mixed. Some people considered Felt an American hero for fighting for justice; others thought him a disloyal traitor. Once Felt came forward, Woodward and Bernstein confirmed he was Deep Throat.

The pair also cautioned people to remember that Deep Throat was just one factor of a mammoth investigation which included other sources, Senate hearings and the infamous Nixon Oval Office recordings, among other things.

“Felt’s role in all this can be overstated,” said Bernstein in an interview after Felt broke his silence. “When we wrote the book, we didn’t think his role would achieve such mythical dimensions. You see there that Felt/Deep Throat largely confirmed information we had already gotten from other sources.”

On December 18, 2008, Felt died of heart failure at the age of 95. Whether he was a courageous patriot willing to risk everything for justice or a turncoat hoping to take down a sitting president is up to individuals and history to decide.

What’s certain is Deep Throat played a critical role in ending the Nixon administration, and Woodward and Bernstein’s reporting brought new meaning to the term “investigative journalism,” inspiring a generation of investigative reporters.

For more information on one of the biggest scandals in U.S. history, tune-in to the 3-night special Watergate, premiering Friday, November 2 at 9/8c.


How ‘Deep Throat’ Took Down Nixon From Inside the FBI - HISTORY

Felt Family News Conference Ted Turner Interview President Bush Takes Questions on His Agenda

Aired May 31, 2005 - 17:00 ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


BLITZER: Happening now: the end of an era -- news that Deep Throat was revealed today. We're watching for more details about to emerge from "The Washington Post," and there he is, Mark Felt. These are today pictures of the man now identified as Deep Throat.
Standby for hard news on "WOLF BLITZER REPORTS."

BLITZER (voice-over): Deep Throat? Revelations from a legendary Watergate source helped bring down a president. Now, has that source revealed himself?

Al Qaeda in America? A doctor and a jazz musician, accused of pledging aid to Osama bin Laden, face the judge.

Also, has a top bin Laden aide already been turned over to the U.S.?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have extracted all the information and intelligence from him.

BLITZER: CNN at 25, the man who made it happen. I'll speak with the always-outspoken Ted Turner about a changing world and a changing news business.

ANNOUNCER: This is WOLF BLITZER REPORTS for Tuesday, May 31st, 2005.

BLITZER: Hello, from the CNN Center in Atlanta.

It's perhaps the most intriguing question in American journalism and the source of endless speculation inside and outside the nation's capital for some three decades -- just who is the Watergate source known as Deep Throat? We may now have the final answer. Joining us with that in our Washington studio, our senior political analyst Bill Schneider. Bill?

BILL SCHNEIDER, SR POLITICAL ANALYST: Wolf, it's a story that's been a long time coming. Has it finally come?

BILL SCHNEIDER, CNN SR POLITICAL ANALYST: A mystery for more than 30 years has been solved, or has it?

"I'm the Guy They Called Deep Throat," that's the title of John D. O'Connor's sensational story in the new "Vanity Fair." The title is a quote from W. Mark Felt, number two man at the FBI in the early 1970s. "On several occasions," O'Connor writes, "he confided to me, `I'm the guy they used to call Deep Throat.'"

Felt was in a position to know a great deal about Watergate, having headed the FBI's investigation of the 1972 break-in in the Democratic National Committee's Watergate offices. He was also in a position to feel aggrieved by the Nixon White House which Felt says, tried to stymie his investigation at every point with false leads, non-cooperation, and threats. The motive behind Deep Throat's decision to go to the press, according to the "Vanity Fair" article? "Felt came to see himself as something of a conscience of the FBI."

Felt has been a leading Deep Throat suspect for many years. A 1992 "Atlanta Monthly" article by former "Washington Post" writer James Mann says Felt could well have been Deep Throat. A 2002 book by another "Washington Post" reporter, Ronald Kessler, "The Bureau: A Secret History of the FBI," said Felt was Deep Throat. White House tapes from 1972 recorded White House aide H.R. Haldeman telling President Nixon that most of the Watergate leaks were coming from Felt.

Some questions: if Felt really is Deep Throat, why did he remain silent for the last 30 years? Bob Woodward told Larry King last year.

BOB WOODWARD, "WASHINGTON POST": And I think, once people see who it is and exactly what happened, will understand why the super- secrecy and the confidentiality and why it was not revealed for such a long time.

SCHNEIDER: The "Vanity Fair" article quotes Felt's son as saying, "His attitude was, I don't think being Deep Throat was anything to be proud of. You should not leak information to anyone." Felt's grandson told the author, "He was concerned about bringing dishonor to our family. It was more about honor than about any kind of shame. To this day, he feels he did the right thing."

OK, so why did Felt decide to reveal himself now? O'Connor says Felt revealed the truth casually, almost inadvertently, to close friends and family members. He confided his identity to a close social companion who shared the information with Felt's daughter, Joan. Joan is reported to have confronted her father saying, "`I know now that you're Deep Throat.' His response? `Since that's case, well, yes, I am.'"

The "Vanity Fair" article describes pressure from family members on Felt, who is now 91 and ailing, to come forward. They wanted him to establish his legacy on his own terms. They also told him the revelation might bring in some money that could help the family. Though "Vanity Fair"'s author says the Felts were not paid for their cooperation. Is the report believable? It has a lot of detail. It depicts a continuing close relationship between Felt and Bob Woodward, and this from Felt's son.

MARK FELT, JR., ALLEGED DEEP THROAT'S SON: "We believe our father, William Mark Felt, Sr., was a -- was an American hero. He went well above and beyond the call of duty, at risk to himself, to save this country from a horrible injustice."

SCHNEIDER (on camera): In the end, it all comes down to a single source, an elderly man whose memory is reported to be failing. Now, Woodward has issued a statement saying neither he nor his "Washington Post" colleagues is going to say anything regarding the identity of Deep Throat. Carl Bernstein says, quote, "it is our intention not to identify deep throat until his death." A prominent Watergate figure tells CNN, I've got grave doubts about this story. If Felt is Deep Throat, then wouldn't he have been able to release Woodward and Bernstein from their confidentiality agreement? Good question, Wolf.

BLITZER: I think that's about to change, a lot of that, right now, based on what I'm hearing, Bill, from a source who's in a position to know what's going on. First of all, "The Washington Post," we are now told, is preparing a lengthy article that will be in tomorrow morning's "Washington Post," an article being written by David Rondrile (ph), one of their best reporters.

We're also now learning that Bob Woodward is himself preparing a long article that will be published in Thursday's "Washington Post," and we're just getting these pictures in -- I want to put them up on the screen -- of Mark Felt. He was brought to the door of the family home in Santa Rosa, California, just a few moments ago, 91-years-old, the former FBI official who is now reported to have been Deep Throat. Mark Felt, smiling there.

I think it's fair to say, Bill, that the family and Mark Felt, for all practical purposes, have given authorization to Woodward and Bernstein to come forward and to acknowledge that Mark Felt was in fact Deep Throat, that they have removed any bonds of confidentiality from Woodward and Bernstein and "The Washington Post," and I think "The Washington Post" is in the process of doing that right now. Certainly, certainly, we'll await for that official statement from "The Washington Post." We're told, on its website it should be issuing a statement very, very shortly.

But as you pointed out accurately, Bill, Mark Felt's name has been around as potentially Deep Throat almost from the very beginning going back 30 years.

SCHNEIDER: That's right. There have been articles, one in the "Atlantic Monthly." There was even an article back in the 1970s in the "Washingtonian" magazine indicating that the most likely identity of Deep Throat is W. Mark Felt. A lot of people wonder why he did it. Well, as I pointed out in the piece, he was fiercely protective of the integrity and independence of the FBI. There was some concern that after the death of J. Edgar Hoover, which happened just before the Watergate break-in, that the FBI might be threatened by the Nixon White House, perhaps even with some kind of a break-up. So he was there to defend the integrity of the FBI. That may be why he did it.

But one important thing is, there is no hint, no indication whatsoever, of any partisan motive on the part of Mark Felt if he was Deep Throat.

BLITZER: Any motive might have been precisely what he suggested, to try to protect the integrity of the FBI. All right. Bill Schneider, stand by. We're going to stand by for the statement from the "Washington Post" that we expect to be issued on their website momentarily. We'll bring that to our viewers once we get it.

Who exactly, though, is Mark Felt? Mark Felt had a long and distinguished career with the FBI and he was one of the top officials at the time of the Watergate break-ins. CNN's Brian Todd has been looking at Felt's background. Brian's joining us now live from our Washington studios. What have you learned, Brian?

BRIAN TODD, CORRESPONDENT: Well, Wolf, we've learned that Mark Felt's story is an example for that old adage, timing is everything. From his ascent to the end of his career and even now, he's always seemed in close proximity to the people and events that shaped a crucial period in FBI history.

TODD (voice-over): Even as a 91-year-old retiree in Santa Rosa, California, W. Mark Felt seemingly cannot shake a certain mystique, even as the world is told by those closest to him that he is the man who shook the halls of power and captivated Washington for more than 30 years.

NICK JONES, MARK FELT'S GRANDSON: My grandfather's pleased that he is being honored for his role as Deep Throat with his friend Bob Woodward. He's also pleased by the attention this has drawn to his career and his 32 years of service to his country.

TODD: As definitive as it sounds, a family statement may not answer long-standing questions about this man's actions and motivations. Born in Idaho in 1913, Felt embarked on the classic story of service to country and devotion to family. Law school, marriage, two children, and in 1942, a job at the Houston Field Office of the FBI, a place then controlled by J. Edgar Hoover, and according to historians, already controversial.

RON KESSLER, AUTHOR "THE BUREAU": They were very effective in some ways. On the other hand, they broke a lot of laws, illegal wire tapping, et cetera, and Mark Felt was in counterintelligence. Mainly, he would go after spies.

TODD: A sense of duty and diligence had to have gotten complicated when Felt moved to the bureau's Washington headquarters in the early 1960s. But Felt became a favorite of J. Edgar Hoover and quickly moved up the ranks. By the time Hoover died in 1972, Felt had ascended to the number two spot, clearly with an ambition to move up one more.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He had his own personal motivation, along with the bureau motivation, his motivation being that he, I think, figured -- expected to be named director of the FBI.

TODD: But Felt was passed up. Felt wrote in his memoirs that during this entire period, he and his allies had been simmering over Watergate. They believed their investigation had been obstructed, delayed, undermined by Nixon operatives. With access to information, smoldering resentment, and a sense of a mission unfulfilled, historians say Felt had motivation to leak to "The Washington Post."

KESSLER: Mark Felt did not want this FBI investigation to be suppressed and really believed that the country's future was at stake, and that's why I think he helped them.

TODD: Felt retired from the FBI in 1973, during the height of the "Washington Post's" coverage of Watergate. Later, in newspaper articles and even his book, Mark Felt denied that he was Bob Woodward's mysterious source.

TODD: So Mark Felt may always be associated with a certain contradiction and irony. In the late '70s, he was charged with violating the constitutional rights of American citizens by authorizing government agents to break into the homes of bombing suspects. That case dated back to the early '70s, when he was still with the FBI. Felt was convicted on that charge, but later pardoned by President Ronald Reagan. Wolf?

BLITZER: Brian Todd in Washington. Brian, thanks very much. Richard Ben-Veniste helped to investigate the Watergate scandal as chief of the special prosecutor's Watergate Task Force from 1973 to 1975. Richard ben Veniste is joining us now in Washington. Richard, thanks very much for joining us on this historic day.

Well, what do you think? Mark Felt, "Deep Throat".

RICHARD BEN-VENISTE, WATERGATE TASK FORCE: Well, it sounds like it's going to be the case. I wasn't one of those people who over the years has tried to figure out who "Deep Throat" was. But I was more interested in the motivation. And I've always felt that the person who provided that kind of information to Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein had both access and a motive to want to protect an agency. It could have been the CIA which was abused. It could have been and perhaps now was the FBI, which was also abused by the Nixon operatives, and the president himself.

BLITZER: Did you get to know Mark Felt? Have you ever met him?

BEN-VENISTE: No, I never have.

BLITZER: What do you know about him, though? I'm sure his name must have crossed your desk on many occasions. BEN-VENISTE: Well, quite clearly, he was a leading candidate for the position of "Deep Throat" over the years. Back then, we didn't hear any information that suggested that he was disgruntled or had information to provide to the special prosecutor's office. However, it's clear that the FBI was targeted by Nixon and his cohorts to try to somehow obstruct the investigation into who was behind the Watergate break-in. And so with respect to tracing the money that was found on the Watergate burglars, the president had the deputy director of CIA go to the acting director of the FBI, who was Felt's immediate supervisor, L. Patrick Gray, to tell gray to stop the investigation because it might uncover national security assets in Mexico. That was completely bogus. The president knew it, and so did Ehrlichman, who gave the order directly to Deputy CIA Director Vernon Walters.

All this later came out. Mark Felt was in a position to know and knew that the FBI was being abused, and in fact said to L. Patrick Gray, if this is a legitimate order, get it in writing. And of course that order in writing never came from the CIA. And then the investigation resumed, and ultimately that money was traced back to Nixon's Committee To Re-Elect The President.

BLITZER: Now that we, for all practical purposes, Richard, know that it was Mark Felt who was the "Deep Throat," the top source for Bob Woodward over at the "Washington Post," historians are going to take another look back at this whole episode in our history. What's the first thing that comes to your mind now that this one mystery has been resolved as to the uncovering of the whole Watergate scandal?

BEN-VENISTE: Well, there were many elements to uncovering Watergate. The first and very important element was the role of these two "Washington Post" reporters, Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, and together with their editors stayed on the story. And obviously, they were much assisted by getting inside information from a high-level person who had access to that information -- clearly, a person who cared deeply about what he was doing. And in fact, a legitimate motivation for this person was to protect the FBI from being further abused and used and corrupted in its pursuit of a legitimate investigation, and there were many, many FBI agents working on the case, Angie Lanno being one who comes immediately to mind, who were dedicated to finding out the truth.

BLITZER: It's a career professional, a long-time agent of the FBI, the number-two FBI official in Washington, not a political operative. We only have a few seconds left, Richard. What does that say to you?

BEN-VENISTE: It says that here was one more person who helped to save us from an administration that was determined to corrupt the constitution of the United States.

BLITZER: Richard ben Veniste, thanks for joining us on this day, when we have finally, finally, after some three decades, learned the identity of "Deep Throat." Richard ben Veniste in Washington. Thank you very much.

And once again, we're expecting the "Washington Post" to be issuing a statement momentarily on this entire subject. Once that statement goes up on their website, hopefully in the next few minutes, we'll bring it to you. We'll tell you what the "Washington Post" is saying. We're also expecting a live statement from Mark Felt's daughter this hour. We'll try to bring that to you live as well. We do know the "Washington Post" is preparing a lengthy article on this very subject that will be published in tomorrow morning's "Washington Post," and that Bob Woodward, the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist himself, is preparing a separate article that is expected to be published on Thursday.

Much more news coming up, including waiting for more on the Mark Felt "Deep Throat" story. Also, Saddam Hussein on trial. Exclusive information here at CNN from Iraq's president detailing when that trial will begin.

Pledging allegiance to Osama bin Laden? U.S. citizens charged today with conspiring to support al Qaeda.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Something is happening outside. The skies over Baghdad have been illuminated. We're seeing bright flashes going off all over the sky.

BLITZER: CNN at 25. The first Gulf War certainly put the network on the map. The man who had the vision, he will join me live this hour. Ted Turner, standing by.

BLITZER: We're standing by awaiting a news conference. Joan Felt, the daughter of 91-year-old Mark Felt, the former FBI agent, expected to have a news conference out in Santa Rosa, California, after word that her father, Mark Felt, now 91 years old, has been identified as "Deep Throat" from the Watergate scandal era.

We're also standing by for a statement from the "Washington Post." We expect it to be posted on its website momentarily. Once that statement has been put up there, we'll share it with you as well. In the meantime, let's check out some other news we're following today.

In Washington, it was a Rose Garden reality check as President Bush met with reporters today over at the White House. On the agenda, the president's agenda. And they went down the list from A to Z.

Let's go live to our White House correspondent, Suzanne Malveaux. Suzanne?

SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, Wolf, President Bush likes to talk about having political capital and spending it on issues that are dear to him, but there are some political observers who are asking, where is the payoff? Early this morning, President Bush went before the cameras and explained.

(voice over) In a wide-ranging, 50-minute news conference, President Bush brushed off a human rights report that compared the U.S.'s Guantanamo Bay Detention Center to a Soviet-era prison camp laden with abuse.

GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I'm aware of the Amnesty International report, and it's absurd. It's an absurd allegation.

MALVEAUX: Mr. Bush shrugged off setbacks his administration is facing overseas and at home. The rising insurgency in Iraq that has claimed nearly 800 lives there in the last month. The president insisted the newly formed Iraqi government can handle it.

BUSH: Our strategy is very clear in that we will work to get them ready to fight, and when they're ready we'll come home.

MALVEAUX: And Iran continuing its nuclear ambitions despite an opportunity to join the World Trade Organization. And a North Korea still unwilling to abandon its nuclear weapons program.

BUSH: If diplomacy's the wrong approach, I guess that means military. That's how I view it. It's either diplomacy or military. And I am for the diplomacy approach.

MALVEAUX: On the domestic front, the president addressed setbacks in getting key legislation pushed through Congress regarding Social Security, energy, and judicial nominees.

BLITZER: Things just don't happen overnight. It takes a while.

MALVEAUX: President Bush was also asked whether he agreed with the Secret Service's decision not to interrupt his bike ride during an emergency evacuation of the White House and The Capitol.

BUSH: I was very comfortable with the decision they made.

MALVEAUX: But the first lady, who was shuttled to a secure bunker during the security scare, has publicly said she disagrees with that decision. The president was asked if that happens often.

BUSH: Here's the way it is: She often disagrees with me.

MALVEAUX: Now, President Bush is the first Republican president, along with a Republican Congress, to be re-elected since Calvin Coolidge. There are some political observers, however, who are looking at this and say that he may be approaching what many second- termers are approaching, that is, a lame duck presidency. Wolf?

BLITZER: Suzanne Malveaux, thanks very much. Suzanne Malveaux reporting for us.

We're getting some new information now from the "Washington Post." Let's share that with our viewers. If someone can help me. There it is. Bob Woodward confirms Mark Felt as "Deep Throat". There it is. There's the "Washington Post" website. It is now official. Bob Woodward has confirmed what has now been suspected for most of this day, that 91-year-old Mark Felt, the former number-two official at the FBI during the Watergate break-in, has been confirmed as "Deep Throat". Bob Woodward, we're told, is writing a lengthy first-person account of this entire story that will be published in Thursday's "Washington Post." David von Drehle, an excellent reporter for the "Washington Post, " is preparing the "Washington Post's" own story that will be published in tomorrow's "Washington Post."

But it's now official. Bob Woodward has confirmed Mark Felt as "Deep Throat". Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein had always said they would not, repeat not, identify "Deep Throat" until "Deep Throat" had died. "Deep Throat" is still very much alive. Mark Felt, we saw pictures of him short -- a little while ago at his home in Santa Rosa, California. His family earlier confirming to "Vanity Fair" that "Deep Throat" was in fact Mark Felt.

The "Washington Post" -- let me read to you from the website of the WashingtonPost.com. "The "Washington Post" today confirmed that W. Mark Felt, a former number-two official at the FBI, was "Deep Throat", the secretive source who provided information that helped unravel the Watergate scandal in the early 1970s and contributed to the resignation of president Richard M. Nixon." The "Washington Post" article, by William Branigan and David von Drehle, goes on to say this: "Woodward said Felt helped the Post at a time of tense relations between the White House and much of the FBI hierarchy. He said the Watergate break-in came shortly after the death of legendary FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, Felt's mentor, and that Felt and other bureau officials wanted to see an FBI veteran promoted to succeed Hoover."

The article goes on to say, and let me quote again, "Felt himself had hopes that he would be the next FBI director, but Nixon instead appointed an administration insider, Assistant Attorney General L. Patrick Gray, to the post."

Ben Bradlee, by the way, is quoted in this new "Washington Post" article. He was the executive editor of the "Washington Post," one of three at the "Washington Post" who knew the identity of "Deep Throat" from the very beginning -- Ben Bradlee, Carl Bernstein, and Bob Woodward.

Ben Bradlee in an interview with the "Washington Post" this afternoon said that "knowing 'Deep Throat' was a high-ranking FBI official helped him feel confident about the information the paper was publishing about Watergate." Bradlee said he knew the positional identity of "Deep Throat" as the Post was breaking its Watergate stories, that he learned his name within a couple weeks after Nixon's resignation.

"The number two guy at the FBI," Bradlee said, "that was a pretty good source. I knew the paper was on the right track. The quality of the source," he said, "and the soundness of his guidance made him sure of that." Once again, official confirmation after some three decades that Mark Felt, 91 years old now, was and is "Deep Throat." We're standing by for a news conference from his daughter, Joan Felt. We'll bring that to you live once it happens out in Santa Rosa, California.

Other news we're following as well, including preparing for Saddam Hussein's trial. New exclusive information that we got here at CNN on when that trial will begin. We heard earlier today from the president of Iraq, Jalal Talabani.

Interrogating an al Qaeda operative -- what Pakistani authorities have now learned from Abu Faraj al-Libbi. We'll hear from Pakistan's president, Pervez Musharraf. Once again, an interview only here on CNN.

And the media mogul. He's the man who gave birth to cable news, and he's always done things his own way. Coming up this hour, our interview with CNN's founder, Ted Turner. Stay with us.

BLITZER: Welcome back. I'm Wolf Blitzer at the CNN Center in Atlanta.

The end of an era, news that Deep Throat has been revealed today. Official confirmation from "The Washington Post" only moments ago. We'll get more on that. First, though, let's get a quick check of some other stories "Now in the News."

The country's second largest airline averts a strike. United Airlines has reached a tentative agreement with a major union on a five-year contract, although no details were immediately released. It came just hours after a smaller union ratified its contract, both important victories for United as it struggles to emerge from bankruptcy.

The U.S. Supreme Court has thrown out the conviction of the Arthur Andersen Accounting firm. Company officials were convicted of obstructing justice for destroying documents related to their Enron account. The court ruled jury instructions in that case were inadequate.

More now on our top story: unlocking the secret after all of these years of the Watergate source known as Deep Throat. Just moments ago, "Washington Post" reporter Bob Woodward confirmed that Deep Throat is in fact Mark Felt, a former FBI second-in-command. Felt is now 91 years old. He's living in retirement in California. What does it matter that we now know who Deep Throat is? As CNN national correspondent Bruce Morton reports, because Deep Throat certainly played a pivotal role in a scandal that changed the way Americans viewed their presidents.

BRUCE MORTON, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: They met, Woodward and Bernstein wrote, in parking garages, probably much like this one, and the source they called Deep Throat whispered hints. Here's how it went in the movie.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Just follow the money.

MORTON: They did follow it, and found that the Watergate burglars had been paid with cash donated to Richard Nixon's committee to re-elect the president, universally called CREEP. The reporters have never said who Deep Throat was, only that he was a man, not a composite, a smoker -- many were back then -- a scotch drinker, fond of gossip.

John Dean, who now says he knows the truth, once thought it was Nixon Chief-of-Staff Alexander Hague. Woodward said it wasn't, back when Hague ran for president in 1988 said it wasn't FBI chief L. Patrick Gray when a CBS news documentary named him said it wasn't former Nixon staffer John Sears when another former staffer, Leonard Garment, named Sears in his book. One Nixon supporter claimed it was TV's Diane Sawyer, but nobody believed him.

So, now will we know? Only Woodward, Bernstein, then-"Washington Post" editor Ben Bradley, and Throat himself know for sure. Henry Kissinger, ex-FBI man Mark Felt, it's almost the only secret Washington's ever kept, and the most interesting thing about it is that we're still fascinated. Not by Throat so much as by the man whose presidency Throat helped end, Richard Nixon, hater, detente seeker, the man of a thousand faces.

RICHARD NIXON, FMR PRES., UNITED STATES: I am not a crook.

MORTON: Deep Throat could be your grandmother. The heart, the character of Richard Millhouse Nixon, man, there's a mystery.

Bruce Morton, CNN, Washington.

BLITZER: Thanks very much, Bruce. And just to confirm for our viewers who may just be tuning in, it's official. Bob Woodward of "The Washington Post" has confirmed Mark Felt, now 91-years-old, 91- years-old, was in fact Deep Throat, the former number two at the FBI during the Watergate scandal.

We're going to go out to Santa Rosa, California, momentarily. We're expecting to hear from Joan Felt, Mark Felt's daughter. We'll go out there. Our Thelma Gutierrez is on the scene for us as well.

We're also standing by for other important news, including news involving our very family, CNN, the Cable News Network. We're celebrating CNN's 25th anniversary. The network's founder, the always-outspoken, the pioneer, Ted Turner -- he's standing by to join us. That's coming up next.

BLITZER: A historic day for all of us who have covered events in Washington history unfold in the United States. Over these past 30 years, we've all wondered, who was Deep Throat? We now know, Mark Felt, the former number two official at the FBI. Here is his daughter, Joan, speaking in Santa Rosa, California.

JOAN FELT, MARK FELT'S DAUGHTER: I live with my dad. I've been privileged to live with my dad for the past 10 or 12 years. It's so wonderful to live with an old person in your family, to not have to send them away to a convalescent home, but to have the ones we love close to us. And my dad -- I know him. I know him so well, and he's a great man. He's so kind. He's so attentive to other people, and loving, and we're all so proud of him, not only for his role in history, but for that, for the character that he is, the person that he is. We love him very much, and we're really happy, and thank you for your acknowledgement and your interest.

QUESTION: Did you have to convince him?

FELT: Well, we're not going to answer those kinds of questions today. We've got a statement and.

QUESTION: (INAUDIBLE) Bob Woodward has confirmed.

FELT: Yes, we are. Thank you.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's a relief. It feels good now.

FELT: It's a relief to be united.

QUESTION: Did he say anything to you (ph)?

FELT: Big grin. I don't even remember, but he's happy. He's happy about it.

QUESTION: In your family statement, he referred to Bob Woodward as a friend. Can you expand upon that a bit?

FELT: He's always -- remembers Bob very fondly, yes.

FELT: Well those kinds of questions we're going to reserve. We're going to perhaps have an interview later. That's being set up, so we're not going to -- we have nothing else to say now, unless my sons do. Nick, do you? What's it like to be the grandson of Deep Throat.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Feels fine. Feels good.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're really proud. Really proud. QUESTION: When did the family find out?

QUESTION: . you agree to keep this -- the details private until the article in "Vanity Fair" comes out?

FELT: Exactly. Thank you. Thank you for, yes, stating that so well and for supporting us in that.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He's saying.

QUESTION: When did the family find out?

FELT: Oh, maybe I didn't -- didn't I not understand that right?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, that's all right.

QUESTION: When did the family find out?

FELT: Well, that's in the article. Got to wait for the article.

BLITZER: All right. So, there, we heard it from Joan Felt, the daughter of Mark Felt, 91-years-old now, the father, who was in Fact Deep throat. After all these years, especially those of us who have covered Washington politics for so many years, it's over. Bob Woodward, officially confirming in "The Washington Post" that Mark Felt was his source, was Deep Throat.

Bruce Morton, you covered Watergate. You're with us now. Give us what's going through your mind as, lo and behold, we finally for sure know -- we've been guessing for many years, but we now know Mark Felt was in fact Deep Throat.

MORTON: Well, Wolf, as you know, they always say Washington can't keep a secret. I think this is a record. The burglary was in 1972. That's what, 33 years ago, and it's been very secret up until just now. That may be the most extraordinary thing about it. Reporters try to cover up their sources and keep them anonymous. They have a couple of reporters in Washington in trouble for that right now, but this lasted a generation.

BLITZER: Mark Felt's name, Bruce, surfaced almost from day one, early on there, with suspicions pointing to him. Was he one of the top -- the top candidates on your list for Deep Throat?

MORTON: No, not in the beginning, anyway, Wolf. I thought it was more likely to be somebody in the White House. I thought maybe Leonard Garment, who was a lawyer over there back then. Even Diane Sawyer was on some people's lists. I always thought that one was unlikely, but it would have been interesting. Mark Felt was certainly somebody who was in the right place. He had known the kinds of things that Deep Throat knew, but so were others.

BLITZER: All right, Bruce. Stand by. I want to go back out to Santa Rosa, California. Joan Felt is still speaking, the daughter of Mark Felt. Let's listen in briefly.

FELT: Well, we're not going to talk about it. No more questions. I think we're going to go inside.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, let's go in.

QUESTION: Just a little hello? (INAUDIBLE) a chance of him coming out?

QUESTION: I know. We missed it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We don't know yet. We don't know yet.

QUESTION: How is he kind of feeling today? Is he feeling kind of overwhelmed? Is he.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE)

FELT: He's happy. He's grinning from ear to ear.

QUESTION: Has he heard from friends?

QUESTION: And what has he said to you today?

FELT: We're not answering the phone right now, so I don't know.

QUESTION: What has he said to you about today and all this attention?

FELT: Well, you know, we're not -- I'm not going to answer any more questions right now.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let's go in.

QUESTION: He came out to Santa Rosa from Washington? You guys live out here?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That's where we live. He came to be with us.

QUESTION: So, how many years ago did he come here?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He came.

FELT: 1989 or '90. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Over 15 years.

QUESTION: Do you think what he did back then was patriotic?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Definitely.

FELT: He's always, as I said in the Spanish statement, he's always lived with honor. He's a great patriot.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He's always -- he's always.

FELT: We'll have more. We've got.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He's always looked out for the best for humanity. Humanity.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let's go in.

BLITZER: All right. So, there it is. Joan Felt, the daughter of Mark Felt, very, happy. Finally, this burden removed from the family. Mark Felt was in fact Deep Throat, 30-plus years ago, the top source for Bob Woodward at "The Washington Post." By the way, Bob Woodward, Carl Bernstein, and Ben Bradlee -- Ben Bradlee, the former executive editor at "The Washington Post" -- now all three of them confirming that Mark Felt was in fact Deep Throat.

Let's bring in a special guest, Ted Turner, the founder of CNN. Tomorrow, Ted, 25 years to the day that you created CNN, this all-news network, 24/7. Before we talk about that a little bit, the fact that today, you're here, the day before the anniversary, we finally learn this historic footnote, who is Deep Throat -- what does that go -- what does that mean to you?

TED TURNER, CNN FOUNDER: Well, not a whole lot. To be honest with you, I -- it happened so long ago, that I'm kind of concentrating on things like nuclear weapons and global climate change, things that affect us now. That's where my emphasis -- my emphasis is in world peace and a more equitable world. I -- footnotes to history are interesting, but I don't concentrate on them.

BLITZER: It'll be fascinating for historians and for.

BLITZER: . political junkies. You were always curious about the identity of Deep Throat.

TURNER: I was. That was a long time ago, though. BLITZER: Not all news can be, you know global and.

TURNER: I know. News of the Roman Empire would still be good.

BLITZER: All right. Give us a couple thoughts now. Twenty-five years ago to the day, tomorrow, you thought of this idea. Didn't you think of this idea, CNN -- how did you come up with this idea?

TURNER: Well, I started thinking about it about three years before I decided to do it, and I knew someone would do it, and I thought one of the networks would do it. They had all the raw material. They had bureaus. They had affiliates that could get them the footage. They had the footage all sitting there. All they had to do was hire a couple of announcers and set them in front of a table and get a few tape machines and they could go into business.

But they didn't do it because they wanted to fight cable. So, I saw an opening, and even though I didn't have enough money, I could see that cable advertising was going to make it because I had the superstation already, and I said this is going to work. It's going to require a gamble of everything I have, but I didn't really do it to make money. I wanted to make money, and I knew I would -- like Rotary's motto, who profits most who serves the best -- but I just wanted to see if we could do it. It was an adventure more than anything else, like Christopher Columbus.

BLITZER: There was all-news radio but no all-news television.

TURNER: Yes, sure, and all-news radio was another reason why I knew it would make it, because all-news radio was making it, even though it was tiny compared to now. For instance there, were two news stations in New York, and most cities didn't have an all-news station.

BLITZER: Now virtually every city has an all-news.

TURNER: Every city has one.

BLITZER: And now there's been a lot of competition for CNN, and not only in the United States, but there are all-news channels in Europe, in Africa, in Asia, all over the world.

TURNER: And we have interest in several of them.

TURNER: Yes, in Turkey and Spain.

BLITZER: Is it true that you started CNN with $25 million and that was basically your fortune at the time and had you lost it, it would have been over for Ted Turner?

TURNER: Pretty -- well, it would have dragged everything -- everything was on the line there.

BLITZER: You took the 25 million and you said, I'm going to go with CNN. TURNER: And I was living in the office.

BLITZER: There were some moments early on when it was almost over.

TURNER: Well, we had our -- in the first six months, the banks called our loans. Our losses were twice as big as what we had projected, and our income was half as much. So, we were -- we were doing four times worse than we projected, and our banks said, we're going to call the loans, and I said, well, can you give me 90 days to see if I can't refinance somewhere else, because if you throw me into bankruptcy, that's not going to do either of us any good. And they said, we'll give you 90 days, and I was able to find another lender at twice the rate to.

BLITZER: ABC started a channel -- what was it called -- the Satellite News Channel?

BLITZER: With Westinghouse.

TURNER: Two of the biggest companies in America.

BLITZER: And they were -- that was a real threat to CNN.

TURNER: They made the statement that we're going to drive us out of business, but they didn't. We hung on and drove them out of business.

TURNER: Well, a little fast footwork. It's a long story, that would be, but I'm extremely proud of what we accomplished at CNN. Other than my family, CNN is obviously -- I regard it as the thing I'm proudest of in my life.

BLITZER: Now, you look back on the 25 years of CNN. Which story were you proudest of, the way CNN handled it?

BLITZER: The start of the air war against Saddam Hussein?

TURNER: Yes, and the whole war.

BLITZER: You decided -- you personally thought that Peter Arnett should stay in Baghdad because there was pressure to get all those.

BLITZER: . Western American reporters out of Baghdad, and you said, if he wants to stay, let him stay.

TURNER: And I had a meeting of our top executives up in my office, the top 10 CNN executives more or less, and they had strongly recommended that we follow the advice of the president and secretary of state, who were calling us every day, and get our people out of there.

BLITZER: The first President Bush personally called you?

TURNER: Yes. He didn't call me. He called Tom Johnson.

BLITZER: Who was then the president of CNN?

TURNER: He said, I strongly recommend you get your troops out. And Colin Powell was calling every day.

BLITZER: And he was chairman of the joint chiefs of staff?

TURNER: Right. And I said, if we have anybody that will stay voluntarily, we will stay, and I overrode the government which you could do because of freedom of the press. And then in the meeting I said, I will take personal responsibility, alone, if anyone gets hurt or killed. I said, somebody has to do it. I'd -- so, just don't worry, it won't be -- it'll be my responsibility.

BLITZER: Because at the time, Peter Arnett, Bernie Shaw, John Halliman.

TURNER: Well, Bernie Shaw -- they were all there.

BLITZER: . our three -- our three reporters were in Baghdad at the al Rasheed Hotel which some people were telling CNN was a target for U.S. air strikes.

TURNER: It could've happened, but I'm a believer that a war correspondent is a war correspondent. I read and watched the films of World War I and World War II, where correspondents went with the troops and they got killed all the time. I don't like having -- being killed, but if you'll recall, during the last Iraqi war, when it looked like nobody from CNN was going to go over there, than I volunteered that I would go. They wouldn't accept me, and besides, they threw all the foreign reporters out. I shouldn't use that word the international reporters out. But I would have gone over there without any problem at all, and risked my life personally.

BLITZER: Was that a real serious.

TURNER: Absolutely serious.

BLITZER: You were ready to go to Baghdad?

TURNER: I wasn't going to let CNN go into the second Gulf War with nobody there, after I just had merged it with Time Warner. I -- you know, not if I could go, you know -- the only -- a coward dies a thousand times, a brave man but once, right?

BLITZER: And that would have been you.

TURNER: Well, if it happened, but I've been pretty lucky in my life. You know, the bullets might not hit me.

BLITZER: I'm going to have Ted Turner stand by because we have more to talk about. We're going to take a quick commercial break. You understand the importance of commercials.

BLITZER: I think you do if.

TURNER: Stand by and don't change that channel.

BLITZER: All right, that's it. We're going to have more with our founder, Ted Turner, on this 25th anniversary of CNN, right after this short message.

BLITZER: Sitting here with the founder of CNN, Ted Turner, on this 25th anniversary of CNN -- tomorrow, to be precise. A lot of our viewers want to know, Ted Turner, you're not directly involved with CNN by any means right now. What is your passion? What are you up to now?

TURNER: I got to say it was not by my choice. If I had my choice, I still would be here. I love CNN, and always will, and there's a very fond place in my heart for it. But I'm really, really busy, and I'm doing a lot of really worthwhile things. I'm involved with three different foundations -- the Turner Foundation, which is our family foundation, which does mostly environmental work the Nuclear Threat Initiative, where I'm partners with Sam Nunn, which is trying to reduce the threat of weapons of mass destruction here and around the world and the third is the U.N. Foundation, where I put my billion dollars that works to make it a better world, peace and security issues, the role of women around the world, children's health, and the environment.

BLITZER: You still believe in the U.N.?

TURNER: Absolutely. I mean, without -- it's like the federal government. It doesn't mean it's perfect. But what are you going to do without it? You would have absolute chaos without the U.N., just like we'd have chaos without the federal government. So we have to have it. We have no choice. If we hadn't had the U.N., we never would have made it through the Cold War without it getting hot, and we wouldn't be here today. We'd have had a nuclear war. The U.N. is absolutely essential to the continued existence of mankind. And the stronger and the more effort that we put behind it, the better U.N. we'll have and the better global oversight it will have. And we need to do that.

BLITZER: We have less than a minute. Looking ahead, what do you hope that CNN will turn into over the next 25 years? TURNER: Well, I think CNN, you know, looks very good now. The only thing that I regret is I'd like to see more international coverage on the domestic feed. It's very good on CNN International.

BLITZER: You know, we're going to do that starting next Monday.

TURNER: I know. One hour. That's good. I think that's --

BLITZER: Let me tell our viewers in case they don't know.

BLITZER: Starting on Monday, every weekday at noon, we will simulcast our coverage on CNN International. Zane Verge and Jim Clancy will be co-anchoring. That noon program starting this Monday.

TURNER: And the other two areas, because we're out of time, the other two areas are the environment and energy as it relates to the environment. We've got to move away from fossil fuels immediately to clean, renewable, locally produced energy in order for our financial security, our military security, and our environmental security.

BLITZER: The one and only Ted Turner.

TURNER: Okay, pal. Good to see you, Wolf.

BLITZER: Ted, thanks so much. We'll celebrate in 50 years.

BLITZER: Ted Turner, on this 25th anniversary of CNN. We'll take a quick break. More news right after this.

BLITZER: A medical doctor and a jazz musician -- two Americans were in court today charged with conspiring to aid al Qaeda. In Ft. Pierce, Florida, Rafiq Sabir told a judge he's in the process of retaining an attorney. He'll have another court appearance Friday. In New York, meanwhile, Tarik Shah appeared before a federal magistrate who set a preliminary hearing date of June 28th. Shah had little to say, but his attorneys describe him as a renowned jazz musician and call the case, and I'm quoting now, "desperate prosecution."

It promises to be one of the most closely watched trials ever, and it could get underway in a matter of weeks. That would be the trial of Saddam Hussein. I spoke about that earlier today with the Iraqi president, Jalal Talabani, in a satellite interview for the CNN World Report Conference happening this week here in Atlanta.

JALAL TALABANI, IRAQ PRESIDENT: Saddam Hussein is a war criminal. He committed worst kind of crimes against Iraqi people in Kurdistan and the south and in Baghdad also. Saddam Hussein deserve just trial, and I think the court of Iraq will decide the future of Saddam Hussein.

BLITZER: Talabani also told me the Saddam trial could start within two months.

Another headline coming out of the CNN World Report Conference here in Atlanta: The Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf told me the number-three man in the al Qaeda leadership is being handed over to the United States. He told me that the captured Libyan-born terror suspect Abu Faraj al-Libbi has already been interrogated in Pakistan and claimed he has not been in direct contact with Osama bin Laden.

Pentagon officials said they're aware of the reports but are unable to provide any information. A CIA spokesman at the same time had no immediate comment.

That's it for me. I'll be back here in Atlanta tomorrow. Until then, thanks very much for joining us. I'm Wolf Blitzer at the CNN Center. "LOU DOBBS TONIGHT" starts right now. Substituting tonight for Lou, Kitty Pilgrim. She's standing by in New York. Kitty?


The FBI: A century of crime fighting

From an anonymous band of accountants and lawyers tasked with halting the white-slavery trade, the FBI has emerged as the nation’s premier crime-fighting force, routinely taking on greater — and more visible — investigative responsibilities throughout its 100-year history, capturing the public imagination and becoming as synonymous with law enforcement as Scotland Yard.

It would have been nearly impossible to predict the bureau’s ascendancy during its early years.

The roots of the FBI lead to the descendant of an emperor. Attorney General Charles Bonaparte had no particular affection for his great uncle, Napoleon I, and secured his place in FBI history by an act of bureaucracy rather than aristocracy.

On July 26, 1908, Bonaparte issued a terse memo announcing the formation of a force of special agents who would carry out investigations for the Justice Department.

Bonaparte’s force of 34 special agents, under the direction of Chief Examiner Stanley W. Finch, didn’thave a name. The force wouldn’t be named the FBI for nearly 30 years.

• Visit TWT’s interactive special section on the force’s 100th anniversary, 100 Years of the FBI.

The special agents had wide jurisdiction but relatively few laws to enforce. They didn’t carry guns or even have arrest powers. They investigated white-collar crimes, such as land fraud and forced labor for debt payment, as well as treason and violations of the neutrality act, which included raising money in the United States for foreign revolutions.

“We always had that balance between criminal investigations and national security,” says FBI historian John F. Fox Jr.

Hoover and Hauptman

The scandals that crippled Warren G. Harding’s administration seeped into the fledgling Bureau of Investigation, which later became the FBI.

The bureau was notorious for corruption and politically motivated investigations, such as the probes into senators who questioned the corrupt dealings of Harding’s Cabinet.

Harding died in office in 1923. Not long after Calvin Coolidge was sworn in, the attorney general and the director of the Bureau of Investigation were both fired.

Tasked with cleaning up the bureau, new Attorney General Harlan Fiske Stone envisioned a highly professional agency that was apolitical and investigated only violations of federal law.

Stone’s choice to lead the agency: the bureau’s 29-year-old assistant director, John Edgar Hoover.

His choice was based, in part, on simple pragmatism. Mr. Hoover was from Washington, D.C., whose residents did not have the right to vote. As a result, Mr. Hoover didn’t belong to a political party, which played into Stone’s goal of keeping politics out of the bureau.

“It seems ironic, given some of the reputation he has,” Mr. Fox says of Mr. Hoover.

Mr. Hoover’s legacy is a complicated one. No other figure is more responsible for the FBI’s training, tactics and image. Yet revelations later in his life and after his death showed that Mr. Hoover frequently abused his authority and seemed at times to be more concerned with spying on perceived enemies and protecting the bureau’s reputation than with fighting crime.

In the early years, however, he made the FBI. In weeding out the incompetent and corrupt, he shrank the agency during his first five years from 441 agents and about 650 support personnel to 339 agents and fewer than 600 support personnel.

He also made significant additions, such as requiring stringent background investigations and training for agents, creating a national fingerprint database and assembling a burgeoning crime laboratory.

Mr. Hoover also was careful to cultivate - some would say manipulate - the press to help mythologize the FBI.

The bureau remained largely unknown until the 1932 kidnapping of the 20-month-old son of Charles Lindbergh, who had sailed to fame by flying solo nonstop across the Atlantic Ocean.

The toddler was snatched from a second-floor nursery in his family’s New Jersey home on the night of March 1, 1932. The crime garnered a tremendous law enforcement response and became a media sensation.

The investigation initially was under the direction of New Jersey State Police. (Kidnapping was not a federal crime at the time.) About two months after the kidnapping, the baby’s body was found less than five miles from the Lindbergh house. The FBI, which still was known as the Bureau of Investigation, was named the lead investigative agency the next year.

A break in the case came in 1934, when a gas-station attendant wrote down the license-plate number of a man who paid him with a $10 gold-certificate bill, months after gold-certificate bills had been removed from circulation.

The $10 bill was among the marked bills included in a $50,000 ransom payment made shortly after the kidnapping. The license-plate number led authorities to Bruno Hauptman, a German carpenter who lived in the Bronx.

Agents not only found more marked ransom money in Hauptman’s home but also used tool-mark analysis to match Hauptman’s tools to a homemade ladder that had been used to climb into the nursery. The bureau also matched Hauptman’s handwriting to a ransom note.

Hauptman was convicted and sent to the electric chair.

During the Great Depression, the public’s imagination belonged to the gangsters.

Marauding outlaws swept through the Midwest, robbing banks and shooting police officers. With colorful names like Charles “Pretty Boy” Floyd and near-legendary stories such as that of Bonnie and Clyde - and movies like 1931’s “The Public Enemy” glorifying their exploits - these criminals became folk heroes.

For the FBI, there was no such romanticism. On the morning of June 17, 1933, as lawmen were taking bank robber Frank “Jelly” Nash to prison, three gunmen opened fire.

Killed in the shooting were FBI agent Ray Caffrey and three police officers as well as Nash, a victim of his would-be rescuers.

The shooting came to be known as the Kansas City Massacre and prompted Congress gave the bureau authority to carry weapons and make arrests.

The era’s most famous gangster, John Dillinger, was an Indiana native who jumped over bank tellers’ counters during robberies, escaped from jails touted as “escape proof” and became a national phenomenon.

In 1934, Dillinger and his gang killed 10 people, including lawmen, stole guns from police stations and showed a knack for breaking out of jail.

Mr. Hoover named Dillinger “Public Enemy No. 1” and instructed agents to take him dead or alive.

Acting on a tip from a Romanian madam who hoped to avoid deportation, FBI agents staked out the Biograph Theater in Chicago, where Dillinger, his girlfriend and the madam had gone to see a movie - a gangster film staring Cary Grant.

As they walked out of the theater, agents called to Dillinger. Instead of giving up, he reached for his gun and was shot dead.

Scores of people went to the Chicago morgue to see his body. Mr. Hoover kept a macabre token in his outer office for years: a plaster impression of Dillinger’s face taken after his death.

World War to Cold War

On June 13, 1942, a German submarine landed on the shores of Long Island, N.Y. Four Nazi saboteurs climbed out and hid their sub.

A Coast Guardsman patrolling the beach didn’t buy their story that they were fishermen. His suspicions were raised further when one of the men gave him $260 to pretend he never saw anything.

The men scurried off, but the Coast Guardsman told his supervisor. When they found explosives buried in the sand the next day, they called the FBI.

The investigation took an unexpected twist when one of the Nazi saboteurs, George Dasch, reported himself to the FBI. He told the agency about their plans and about another group of saboteurs who landed in Florida four days after his group arrived in New York.

It’s unclear why Dasch called the FBI. He suggested it was out of a greater loyalty to the United States, where he had lived for 20 years. Others suggest the Coast Guardsman had spooked him and, worrying that they would be caught anyway, he tried to get the best deal he could by cooperating.

The eight saboteurs were arrested within 10 days. The FBI recovered $174,588 of the $175,000 the saboteurs had been given. Along with the bribe to the Coast Guardsman, they had spent money only on basic accommodations.

The eight were tried in secret by military tribunals authorized by President Roosevelt. Six were executed Dasch and another man were given long prison sentences.

According to the FBI, the Nazis never again attempted a sabotage mission, and no sabotage was committed against the U.S. during World War II.

By the end of the war, America had a new enemy - the communists.

For the better part of 50 years, the FBI would hunt Soviet spies and American traitors, some of whom worked in the highest levels of U.S. counterintelligence.

A pivotal case was that of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg. The New York couple were sent to the electric chair in 1953 after being convicted of taking part in a conspiracy to steal secrets of the U.S. atomic bomb. The Rosenbergs, who were communists, were convicted on the strength of testimony from Ethel’s brother, a young soldier who had been stationed where the bomb was developed at Los Alamos, N.M.

Doubts about the Rosenbergs’ guilt lingered for years. Though Ethel Rosenberg certainly was aware of her husband’s activities, the extent of her involvement in spying is still debatable.

There is no doubt that Julius Rosenberg was a Soviet spy, but his KGB handler has since said Rosenberg did not supply information about the atomic bomb but did offer designs for fuses that were key in making Soviet missiles.

There were no doubts about Rudolph Abel.

In 1953, a paperboy in Brooklyn noticed that a nickel he had received felt light. It split in two when he dropped it and revealed a tiny photograph inside.

The hollow nickel and the numerical code depicted in the photograph confounded the FBI.

Four years later, Soviet spy Reino Hayhanen told U.S. authorities he wanted to defect because, after having spent five years in America, he had been called back to Moscow and didn’t want to go.

Pledging to help the FBI, Hayhanen introduced the bureau to a world of hollowed coins, pens and screws that carried secret messages. He led agents to an Army sergeant who had worked for the Soviets and was later sentenced to five years’ hard labor.

He even helped decipher the message in the hollow nickel from years earlier: It had been meant for him as a welcome from his KGB contacts.

In the end, Hayhanen’s greatest contribution may have been leading the bureau to Abel, who ran spies while posing as the owner of a photography studio in Brooklyn.

Abel was tried and sentenced to 30 years in prison after five years, he was released in a prisoner exchange between the United States and the Soviet Union. The exchange included U.S. pilot Gary Powers, whose U-2 spy plane had been shot down in 1960 over the Soviet Union.

Civil rights

During the 1960s, the FBI investigated some of the most notorious civil rights cases of the time. At the same time, however, mostly at the behest of Mr. Hoover, the FBI secretly violated the civil rights of others by spying on them.

One of the most significant cases investigated by the bureau during the time became known as Mississippi Burning. It occurred against the backdrop of the Freedom Summer, an effort to register black voters and show resistance to the Ku Klux Klan, which terrorized the region.

Civil rights workers Michael Schwerner, Andrew Goodman and James Chaney were arrested June 21, 1964, on speeding charges in Neshoba County, Miss. They were denied phone calls, released later and never heard from again.

Attorney General Robert Kennedy asked the FBI the next day to investigate. Agents found the workers’ burned-out car but didn’t find their bodies, which had been buried, until August.

Ultimately, seven of the 18 defendants brought to trial were convicted, though none of murder. In 2005, Edgar Ray Killen, a preacher and KKK recruiter, was convicted of manslaughter for his role in helping organize the killings.

The public outrage in the immediate aftermath of the killings helped spur Congress to pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

“I must commend the Federal Bureau of Investigation for the work they have done in uncovering this dastardly act,” Martin Luther King said. “It renews again my faith in democracy.”

The FBI’s questionable, if not outright illegal, treatment of King was part of a secret program known as the Counter Intelligence Program, or Cointelpro.

The program’s ostensible purpose was to neutralize radical, dangerous groups, such as the KKK, Black Panthers and the Weathermen. Operatives infiltrated groups, gathered information about them through burglaries and illegal wiretaps and leaked embarrassing facts or rumors about targets.

These tactics soon spread to others who had no involvement in any criminal activity, such as King. The program seemed to become part of Mr. Hoover’s proclivity to collect data that could be used for blackmail.

The public didn’t learn about Cointelpro until 1971, when documents about the program were stolen from an FBI office in Pennsylvania. Mr. Hoover ended Cointelpro shortly thereafter, and the FBI has since acknowledged that many of the practices went too far.

In June 1972, five men with cameras, rubber gloves and connections to the CIA were caught breaking into the Democratic National Committee headquarters at the Watergate hotel in the District - and the FBI would play a central role in the ensuing scandal.

A years-long probe by the FBI revealed a cover-up of the break-in that included the White House and members of the Committee for the Re-election of the President. It also revealed a pattern of break-ins, illegal wiretaps and sabotage carried out by people loyal to President Nixon.

In the end, it lead to Mr. Nixon’s resignation and the convictions of several high-ranking officials, including the attorney general and the president’s chief of staff.

The bureau wasn’t immune from the fallout. Acting Director L. Patrick Gray resigned after revelations he had passed FBI reports on the case to White House counsel John Dean, who was convicted later for his role in the conspiracy, and burned documents given to him by the White House.

The FBI also played a role in keeping Watergate in the public consciousness. In 2005, retired Deputy Director W. Mark Felt admitted he was “Deep Throat,” the anonymous source who leaked information about the investigation to reporters.

While Mr. Hoover made an indelible impact on the FBI, the bureau saw many changes in the years after his death in 1972, such as the rise of a world-class training center in Quantico, Va. the development of profiling serial killers and other criminals and more women and minorities working as special agents.

The bureau also changed the type of cases it made, especially against organized crime. Mr. Hoover had long denied the existence of a cohesive crime syndicate and had favored quick arrests over long-term investigations.

However, the passage of the Federal Wiretap Act in 1968, which allowed law enforcement to record phone calls in some cases, and the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), passed in 1970 and aimed at the mob, gave the bureau new tools to target organized crime.

This helped the FBI attack organized crime’s stranglehold on labor unions and take down mob bosses such as John Gotti.

Yet the new tools couldn’t replace the value of informants and undercover agents, the most famous of whom was Joe Pistone.

For six years beginning in 1976, Mr. Pistone posed as Donnie Brasco, a small-time hood who ingratiated himself to the Bonanno crime family, one of the five in New York.

Mr. Pistone did such a convincing job that family leader Dominick “Sonny Black” Napolitano wanted to make Mr. Pistone a full member. The FBI had to end Mr. Pistone’s assignment when Napolitano ordered him to kill a rival.

Mr. Pistone’s undercover work ultimately led to the convictions of more than 100 people. It also led to the death of Napolitano, who was killed for letting Mr. Pistone infiltrate the family.

In the months and years after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, the FBI’s biggest concern has been terrorism.

Still working to improve its counterterrorism work and become a world-class intelligence agency, the FBI has had to confront its mistakes made before the attacks and ongoing criticism that its efforts infringe on civil liberties.

Extremists - foreign and homegrown - have been the focus of much of the bureau’s work over the past 20 years.

The first attack on U.S. soil by terrorists from the Middle East came Feb. 26, 1993. A van packed with explosives in a parking garage under the World Trade Center in New York City killed six people and left a crater nearly 100 feet deep. The attack’s architect later told the FBI the goal had been to destroy one tower, with debris toppling the second.

A sprawling investigation quickly led agents first to arrest four men in New York who had taken part in the bombing. Months later, the FBI and New York City police caught a group of Muslim extremists as they mixed explosives in a garage.

That group planned to bomb the United Nations building, the Holland and Lincoln tunnels and the federal building that contains the FBI’s New York field office.

In 1995, two years after the attack, the probe led to Pakistan, where authorities arrested the driver of the van and the mastermind of the attack, Ramzi Yousef, nephew of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the architect of the Sept. 11 attack.

On April 19, 1995, an Army veteran who had grown to hate the U.S. government after tragedies at Waco, Texas, and Ruby Ridge, Idaho, drove a rented truck packed with homemade explosives to the federal building in Oklahoma City.

When the bomb detonated, a third of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building was flattened, 168 people were killed, and Timothy McVeigh became the worst domestic terrorist in U.S. history.

The day after the attack, FBI agents sifting through the rubble found an important clue: the rear axle of the rented Ryder truck. The vehicle information number on it led agents to a body shop in Kansas, where employees helped create a composite sketch of the man who had rented the truck. The sketch subject was recognized quickly as McVeigh, who had been arrested about 1 1/2 hours after the bombing by an Oklahoma state trooper who had noticed that McVeigh’s car had no license plate.

McVeigh was convicted of the bombing and executed three months before the Sept. 11 attacks.


The Episconixonian

Ivan Greenberg, writing at the History News Network after studying 3,500 pages of (legally obtained how quaint, how old school) records about FBI official W. Mark Felt, Bob Woodward's most important Watergate source:

[W]hen Felt’s role as Deep Throat first was made public in 2005 few in the media, with the exception of the Albany Times Union, adequately appreciated that he did not act alone. At least three other top-level FBI officials or agents worked with him to coordinate the leaks to the press. What might properly be called a “coup” inside the government, led by Felt, forced the President to resign. The actions of this FBI faction were extraordinary. Instead of targeting political liberals or radicals, they went after the chief executive using information as a weapon.

Felt’s motives have been discussed at length. He saw himself as a patriotic whistleblower acting to preserve the integrity of government. Nixon broke the law during Watergate and so the President should be exposed. Critics see less noble purposes. Felt resented being passed over for the Director’s job by Nixon after J. Edgar Hoover died in early May 1971. In addition, Felt acted as a vigilante against Nixon because the President wanted to run “dirty tricks” intelligence operations directly out of the White House bypassing the FBI altogether. The latter point is critical: Felt hoped to preserve the dominant role of the FBI to spy on Americans in domestic politics. Felt called it preserving the FBI’s “independence.”

FBI files show that the Felt faction engaged in a high-level of deception within the Bureau to protect its secret contact with the press. Soon after the Watergate break-in, Director L. Patrick Gray III put Felt in charge of finding sources of FBI leaks to the press. In short, the fox had been put in charge of protecting the chickens.


Enemies: A History of the FBI by Tim Weiner – review

D espite recently declassified materials, historians of the FBI remain painfully hostage to the fragmentary records that survived "the routine destruction of FBI files" typifying J Edgar Hoover's 48-year, secrecy-obsessed directorship and especially "the bonfire of his personal files after his death" in 1972. Because deliberate cover-ups naturally excite scurrilous conjectures, suspicious students of the bureau have reacted to Hoover's well-oiled system for the undetectable destruction of government archives by mimicking his tendency to assume the worst, often on the basis of hearsay evidence, about the target of an investigation.

Author of a celebrated account of serial blundering and incompetence at the CIA, Tim Weiner is commendably impervious to this familiar temptation, refusing to replicate Hoover's paranoid style. Although Hoover unscrupulously exploited stories of homosexuality to discredit or silence political adversaries, Weiner begins his latest book, based in part on the freshly declassified documents, by dismissing the racy gossip that Hoover himself was "a tyrant in a tutu". And although one of Hoover's chief deputies testified to his boss's smouldering bigotry ("He hated liberalism, he hated blacks, he hated Jews – he had this great long list of hates"), Weiner is more lenient in his own assessment, assuring us that Hoover "was not a monster" and concluding, in an effort at balance, that the man's "knowledge was enormous, though his mind was narrow".

Leaving Hoover's alleged personality disorders to Hollywood scriptwriters, Weiner focuses his efforts instead on refuting a series of misperceptions about the FBI that a lasting cult of secrecy has allowed to crystallise in the public mind.

The first of these misunderstandings is that the FBI, after 9/11, had to be dragged reluctantly from its traditional law-enforcement approach towards an unprecedented preventive mission, aimed at stopping in advance those who might possibly harm the country. There is nothing especially novel, it turns out, about the preventive mission assigned to the bureau in the war on terror. From its very origins, the FBI devoted the lion's share of its resources towards averting future harms, not towards solving past crimes, which remains a largely state and local function. As one-time FBI associate director Mark Felt (aka "Deep Throat") explained in the mid-1970s, the mission of the bureau has consistently been "to stop violence before it happens" by targeting individuals deemed dangerous by unaccountable bureaucrats on the basis of undisclosed evidence.

Contrary to the comic-strip image of the G-man gunning down gangsters in the 30s, Hoover's fixation was the communist menace, a "malignant and evil way of life" with which red professors and preachers, union activists, movie-makers, civil rights leaders and student protesters threatened to infect the American population. While warning, after the second world war, that the Soviets might be secretly plotting nuclear terrorism inside the US, his real concern was to prevent secret armies of disloyal citizens from luring their countrymen into a noxiously anti-American way of life. Rather than fighting crime, Hoover, even after he severed his cloakroom ties to the malodorous politics of McCarthyism, kept busy "creating the political culture of the cold war".

Refreshingly, Weiner also dismantles the myth of an imperial presidency, its powers supposedly swollen by real and imaginary threats. Permanent national-security bureaucracies, such as the FBI, make ephemerally sitting presidents seem not imperial but astonishingly easy to dominate, manipulate and deceive. After Truman announced that he wanted "no Gestapo or secret police" and objected to the FBI's "dabbling in sex-life scandals and plain blackmail", for instance, Hoover "all but declared war on the White House".

The shocking "insubordination" of intelligence agencies towards the presidents they nominally serve is facilitated by the former's closely held possession of embarrassing information. Illegally obtained evidence of reputation-ruining antics permitted Hoover to defy the Kennedys without risking his job, just as it allowed him to charm (rather than merely threaten) presidents from FDR to LBJ with voyeuristic morsels about political rivals culled from his confidential trove. The way disgruntled FBI agents toppled Nixon's would-be imperial presidency by leaking secrets to the press illustrates again how a formal hierarchy of authority can be informally capsized.

But perhaps the deepest reason why presidents have a hard time controlling their national security bureaucracies involves the preventive mission itself. The performance of routine law enforcement bodies can be evaluated by the percentage of committed crimes they have successfully solved. Moreover, their ability to indict and convict depends on their compliance with rules and procedures set by elected officials. By contrast, intelligence agencies cannot be disciplined in this way nor is any clear method available for evaluating their performance or measuring, in retrospect, the number and gravity of attacks that they have successfully foiled.

Hoover's "alliance" with President Truman's "strongest political enemies in Congress" also illustrates the inadequacy of schoolbook accounts of the American separation of powers. Rather than the legislative and executive branches checking and balancing each other for the sake of the public, what we find is an agency officially located within the executive but that repeatedly colluded with one of the parties inside the legislature to undermine sitting presidents and plot their electoral defeat. "Hoover knew how to use intelligence" not only to root out potential traitors, but "as an instrument of political warfare" to help red-hunting Republicans give grief to allegedly weak-on-communism Democrats such as Truman. Hoover's back-channelling of sensitive information to Richard Nixon, serving at the time on the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC), is only the most famous example of the partisan-political game played by an unaccountable executive-branch bureaucracy that had no constitutional right to spend taxpayers' money to help one party depose the other.

Another of Weiner's arresting themes is the way the bureau frequently overemphasised lesser threats and underemphasised greater ones. In the immediate postwar period, the diversion of scarce resources to red-hunting meant the neglect of organised crime. In the late 60s and early 70s, similarly, the "bureau's increasingly relentless focus on American political protests" and "political warfare against the American left" drained "time and energy away from foreign counterintelligence" and counterespionage. A similarly one-sided fixation has emerged in the decade after 9/11. In response to political pressure, the FBI now routinely resorts to what seems like solicitation and entrapment to compensate for an awkward deficit of homegrown Islamic terrorists: "More than half of the major cases the FBI brought against accused terrorists from 2007 and 2009 were stings." The implication, once again, is that the bureau's irrational focus on relatively marginal threats has significant costs, diverting investigative attention from much more serious perils to the country's and the world's wellbeing. For instance: "The FBI's relentless focus on fighting terrorism had an unforeseen consequence. The investigation and prosecution of white-collar crime plummeted, a boon to the Wall Street plunderings that helped create the greatest economic crisis in America since the 1930s."

Weiner's passing reference to a "tug-of-war between security and liberty" brings us to the most pungent question raised by the history he recounts, namely: can the FBI's serial failures (for example, to prevent the Soviet theft of nuclear secrets or the 9/11 attack) really be attributed to the way the bureau's hands have been irresponsibly tied by civil liberties, Congressional oversight, freedom of the press, and the rule of law? In a few casual asides, Weiner suggests that the answer is "yes", that legality and individual rights have imposed a debilitating burden on America's intelligence agencies. He also seems to defend the same thesis from the opposite perspective: "Over the decades, the bureau has best served the cause of national security by bending and breaking the law."

Fortunately or unfortunately, this conclusion is contradicted by almost every page of Weiner's detailed narrative, where the principal obstacles to the bureau's effective use of scarce resources in the defence of national security are meticulously rehearsed. They include a lack of professionalism, cultural insularity, monolingualism, bureaucratic routine, political partisanship, ideological fixation, and a failure of agents to follow up on promising leads. Legality and liberty are barely if ever mentioned in this regard. Not surprisingly, given his last book, Weiner also emphasises the dismayingly dysfunctional consequences of the "fight between the FBI and the CIA", which he describes as "a theatre of the absurd".

The subsection that Weiner devotes to former FBI interrogator Ali Soufan also upends the facile supposition that security is invariably compromised when intelligence agents follow procedures. While Soufan quickly extracted actionable intelligence from captured al-Qaida suspect Abu Zubaydah using well-tested methods of studying the subject's background and building a personal rapport, inexperienced CIA interrogators, who excruciatingly water-boarded Zubaydah 83 times over an extended period, only motivated their helpless captive to fabricate tactically useless lies to stop the pain.

Readers of a comprehensive history such as Weiner's come away with an indelible impression that the FBI chronically misjudges and capriciously ranks the dangers facing the country. For instance, even when "the Communist party was no longer a significant force in American political life … Hoover had to continue to represent the party as a mortal threat". Such misuse of scarce resources cannot be explained by too much liberty but only by the tunnel vision of a specialised bureaucracy that needs to justify its existence to the Appropriations Committee. Hoover was convinced that the American civil rights and anti-Vietnam war movements were orchestrated from Moscow, but he consistently overestimated the danger posed to America by "the American communist underground" because only a fifth column under the control of "the international communist conspiracy" would fall squarely under the domestic jurisdiction of the FBI. Operating without reality checks, or even sanity checks, secretive intelligence agencies are unlikely to provide a rational assessment and prioritisation of the many real but not equally urgent threats to national security.

In 1943, Attorney General Francis Biddle ordered Hoover to destroy the bureau's list of American citizens who, although they had committed no crime, were deemed dangerous and worthy of military detention. (Hoover defied the order, quietly renaming and better concealing the list.) What disturbed Biddle was the impossibility of effectively challenging a conclusion reached within a secretive bureaucracy. The attempt to pick out those who were likely at a later date to break the law naturally led to a search for proxy indicators, which boiled down in practice to speech critical of government policy. As a result, during the Vietnam war, "The FBI found it hard to distinguish between the kid with a Molotov cocktail and the kid with a picket sign."

The institutional shortcomings of the FBI, Weiner is surely right, cannot be traced exclusively to Hoover's personal eccentricities and foibles. That the bureau's troubles have more enduring sources was made clear, for example, by the way Dick Cheney, after 9/11, "renewed the spirit of the red raids" and "revived the techniques of surveillance that the FBI had used in the war on communism". The root cause of the bureau's frequent ineffectiveness also lies deeper than the aversion to self-criticism characterising specialised bureaucracies or the vulnerability of secretive agencies to partisan-political capture. It is trite but true that public officials, like all of us, tend to behave irresponsibly when unwatched. This common failing is exacerbated when national security is at stake, for the simple reason that insecurity is highly emotional, subjective, variable and easy to manipulate for strategic ends. Elected and unelected officials understand that when fear levels are raised – justifiably or not – an insecure public will tend to support national security policies uncritically and will not, until many years have passed, hold its leaders responsible for misconceived actions, including mendaciously justified wars and the arbitrary snaring of confused young men in undercover stings. That such seemingly incurable ills persist well beyond Hoover's long personal shadow is perhaps the most important lesson of this carefully researched study of occult powers inside the most externally powerful modern democratic state.

Stephen Holmes's The Matador's Cape: America's Reckless Response to Terror is published by Cambridge University Press.


Deep Throat double cross

The covert identity of Deep Throat, the informant who blew the whistle on the Watergate scandal, remained a secret for more than 30 years. The times have changed. Today, the government is treating informants as disposable sources of information, often jeopardizing their identities and lives. Considering this modus operandi, how many reliable sources of information will be willing to cross over to the other side of the looking-glass in the future?

Throwaway people

Deep Throat was introduced to the public by the Washington Post’s reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein in their 1974 book “All The President’s Men”. Bernstein kept the secret of Deep Throat’s identity even from his then-wife Nora Ephron. The ex-wife would find her own celebrity as a brilliant, Academy Award nominated writer and director (“When Harry Met Sally,” “Silkwood,” “Sleepless in Seattle,” “Julie and Julia”). Nora Ephron became obsessed with figuring out the mystery. Years earlier, Ephron served as an intern in the White House – now she was trying to unlock the secrets of the Nixon administration. Ephron eventually concluded that Deep Throat was FBI Deputy Director W. Mark Felt. On May 31, 2005, a Vanity Fair magazine article blew the lid off the 30 year old conundrum, also naming Felt as the mystery man behind the Watergate floodgates.

In this day and age, informants can no longer rely on the government for the same secrecy and protection. FBI’s guidelines state, “The United States government will strive to protect your identity but cannot promise or guarantee either that your identity will not be divulged…” Having been squeezed out like a lemon, they are dead men walking. Their only hope is to walk fast.

The mission of using informants as the sources has been perverted when they become the recipients of law enforcement information, instead. One of the first cases that showcased this problem involved the Godfather of Boston’s Irish mob, Whitey Bulger. After becoming a confidential informant, Bulger and his mob associate Flemmi managed to corrupt their FBI handlers. They lavished gifts upon FBI Supervisors John Morris, his partner James Ring and Agent John Connolly from what they nicknamed “the X fund”. With these bribes, mobsters bought 30 years of protection from the law by the very agents entrusted with upholding it. FBI agents disclosed identities of informants to the mobsters, ensuring that no one lived to tell about their crimes. FBI quite literally allowed these criminals to get away with murder, many times over.

Wrongful death lawsuits were brought against the federal government by families of victims, tortured and murdered by the mob as the result of being exposed as FBI informants. The FBI was ordered to pay McIntyre’s family $3.1 million for his wrongful death. It took the family 22 years to prove that the FBI’s mishandling of its informants caused McIntyre to be brutally murdered. In its infinite arrogance, the government had the audacity to appeal the ruling and rightfully lost.

The McIntyre lawsuit was the first of 17 cases filed against the government in the Bulger matter. In May of 2009, the government was ordered to pay the families of Michael Donahue and Edward Halloran almost $8.25 million for their murders. In June of 2009, the federal government was ordered to pay $6.25 million dollars to the family of Richard J. Castucci, who was shot in the head after the mobsters discovered he was an informant.

The mobsters executed many others, such as Roger Wheeler (murdered for refusing to sell his company to gangsters), Debra Davis (Flemmi’s girlfriend, strangled by Bulger because she knew too much about the mobsters’ cozy deal with the FBI), Arthur “Bucky” Barrett (a bank robber, murdered because Bulger wanted to take his money), Deborah Hussey (the teenage daughter of Flemmi’s girlfriend, whom he had been sexually molesting – Bulger choked the teenager with a rope).

FBI agent Connolly was convicted on federal racketeering charges in 2002 for protecting mobsters Bulger and Flemmi from prosecution and warning Bulger to flee just before his indictment. Thanks to Connolly, Bulger is still at large and remains on the FBI’s Most Wanted list. Flemmi is serving a life term in prison for 10 murders.

In his federal court testimony, Flemmi stated that former Boston FBI supervisor James Ring “was aware of what we were doing. He condoned it.” Flemmi explained that Ring and his partner, John Morris, treated gangsters as if they were FBI agents,” stating, “It’s like we were equals.”

This exposure rocked the FBI to the core and changed the agency’s guidelines in dealing with informants. “The unfortunate thing is that when you have something like this, there tends to be an overreaction,” says former FBI assistant director Barry Mawn. It’s difficult to imagine the possibility of “overreacting” to murder caused by the agency whose mission is to protect the citizens from crime.

Tweedledum and TweedleDEA

In spite of the escalating violence on both sides of the U.S./Mexico border, the mood is not too somber at the DEA. Their idea of “fun” ended up costing prosecutors a case against a suspected drug trafficker after it was revealed that a DEA agent forced the Mexican-born suspect to pose for a booking photo wearing a sombrero and holding a Mexican flag. Once his attorney asked the prosecution for a copy of the photo, his client was immediately offered a plea deal. This allowed the suspect to avoid a possible 20-year sentence in a cocaine-related case. DEA spokesperson told ABC News the photo was taken but “no longer exists.” Apparently, neither does common sense at the DEA.

ICE cold corruption

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is a relatively young agency that sprang up in a tortured birth of the Department of Homeland Security. In 1957, Charlton Ogburn, Jr. uttered a quote that is often attributed to Gaius Petronius Arbiter and could be just as easily attributed to today’s DHS agents: “We trained hard … but it seemed that every time we were beginning to form up into teams we would be reorganized. I was to learn later in life that we tend to meet any new situation by reorganizing and a wonderful method it can be for creating the illusion of progress while producing confusion, inefficiency, and demoralization.”

ICE is heavily mired in corruption, which is exemplified by a slew of recent high profile cases. Richard Padilla Cramer, veteran ICE agent pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice and is awaiting sentencing on February 18, 2010. He is facing 20 years in prison for supplying members of the Mexican drug cartel with confidential law enforcement information obtained from the computer systems of ICE and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), as well as trafficking more than 600 pounds of cocaine from Panama to Spain.

Cramer was reportedly selling lists of informants to Mexican drug traffickers, which also protected his interests as a major investor in several large shipments of cocaine. He was caught when an informant showed the authorities printouts from law enforcement databases, provided to major drug dealers by Cramer. He is being held at the Federal Detention Center (FDC) in Miami, Florida.

Constantine Peter Kallas, former Assistant Chief Counsel for ICE, is also awaiting sentencing. Federal grand jury indicted Kallas and his wife for bribery, money laundering, federal worker’s compensation fraud, and other federal charges in connection with accepting payments to adjust the immigration status of aliens. According to the government’s filings, Kallas and his spouse received thousands of dollars from 45 illegal aliens and 2 legal permanent residents in exchange for immigration benefits. They were arrested at the San Manuel Indian Bingo and Casino, where authorities believed they were in the process of accepting another bribe. Kallas is being held at the Los Angeles Metropolitan Detention Center (MDC), his wife was released on $ 200,000.00 dollar bond. If convicted, the couple faces a statutory maximum penalty of life in federal prison.

Former U.S. Attorney Thomas P. O’Brien said in a written statement: “As a law enforcement official, Mr. Kallas abused his position in the Department of Homeland Security simply to line his own pockets.”

Roy M. Bailey is another high-ranking DHS/ICE official indicted by a federal Grand Jury for multiple counts of bribery, conspiracy and extortion. Bailey misused his position as the Assistant District Director of the late Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) and thereafter as the Director of Field Operations of ICE in Detroit by taking bribes in return for immigration benefits. This included Bailey securing unjustified releases of detainees from ICE custody and arranging sham marriages for immigration purposes.

Bailey was convicted on charges of conspiracy to commit bribery, conspiracy to defraud the United States and misprision of felony. Charges against him carried maximum sentence of up to 68 years in prison and fines of over $1 million. The sentence he received hardly matches the severity of his crimes and the shame he brought upon the agency. In March of 2009, Bailey was sentenced to a puny 37 months imprisonment and ordered to pay a fine of $30,000. He is serving time in the Federal Correctional Institution (FCI) at Terminal Island, California and is scheduled to be released on March 20, 2012. Prosecutor Terrence Berg stated, “Today’s prison sentence should be a lesson to any who would misuse public power for personal gain.” It’s hardly a lesson, since the sentence clearly did not match the severity of Bailey’s betrayal of public office.

One of the charges against Bailey included his failure to report that one of his employees, former ICE Detention Officer Patrick Wynne stole hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash from immigration detainees over the course of several years. Ironically, Wynne received a longer sentence than Bailey, having been sentenced to 57 months in prison. Inexplicably, Wynne was released on March 13, 2009, having served only a portion of his sentence.

Yet another veteran ICE Agent, Pedro Cintron, was indicted on 14 counts, including theft, disclosing the name of a confidential informant, making false statements to authorities and taking bribes for bringing illegal immigrants into the U.S. Cintron worked as a federal agent for more than 25 years. He was working as a federal undercover agent investigating an Ecuadorean-Chinese smuggling ring. Cintron crossed over to the other side and impeded authorities by protecting a smuggler from being arrested.

After being indicted, Cintron was placed on paid (that’s right, paid) leave from his ICE job. He was facing a maximum sentence of 57 years in prison. As a result of a plea bargain, Cintron was charged only with “receiving a gratuity by a public official” and received a sentence of only 2 years behind bars. He will be out of prison by May 11, 2011.

Daphiney Kimberly Caganap is another high-ranking federal official convicted of corruption. Caganap served as the Port Director at the San Ysidro Port of Entry (the largest and busiest land border crossing in the U.S.), headed intelligence operations and later became the Port Director for the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection (CBP) at the Detroit Metro Airport.

After being indicted, Caganap was placed on administrative (paid) leave – after all, American taxpayers wouldn’t want to miss out on the opportunity to pay another corrupt fed. Caganap was charged with nine counts of conspiracy to defraud the US, accepting gratuities, and making false statements. According to federal prosecutors, she received bribes for turning a blind eye to drug and alien smuggling through the San Ysidro port of entry. The indictment stated that after being briefed by federal agents on the investigation, Caganap passed along sensitive information to the suspect.

Port Director Caganap was facing a potential 36-year prison term, but –guess what? She got away with receiving only probation. Is anyone still wondering why corruption is so rampant at the high levels of federal law enforcement? Could lack of accountability have something to do with it?

Meth-a-physics

Identities of informants were sold out for drugs and money by Gordon Clark Bohannon, former Chief Deputy of the Hockley County Sheriff’s Office. On December 21, 2009, Bohannon pleaded guilty to his role in a methamphetamine trafficking conspiracy. He was charged in a 110-count indictment, along with 27 co-conspirators, with operating a major drug trafficking organization in Texas, Arizona and California. In his position as a Chief Deputy of the Sheriff’s Office, Bohannon obtained sensitive law enforcement information that he handed over to his co-conspirators. According to the indictment, he also interfered with the efforts by police to investigate the conspiracy, aided and abetted prohibited criminals in illegally possessing firearms, tried to get authorities to dismiss criminal charges against his co-conspirator and warned drug traffickers that a search warrant would be executed at their residence.

Bohannon retaliated against anyone he saw as a threat to the drug traffickers, obtaining the names of informants from law enforcement databases and providing this information to his co-conspirators. To discredit an informant who was going to testify against their drug organization, Bohannon went so far as to plant methamphetamine at his residence. He then instructed Deputy Sheriffs to obtain and execute a search warrant of the informant’s home. When the deputies conducted the search but couldn’t find the drugs, Bohannon said something to the effect of “well, hold on, let me call and see where she pu . . ., hold on I’ll call you back.” He directed officers to specific locations and offered to send over the confidential informant so she could show them where to look for drugs.

Bohannon was facing a maximum statutory sentence of life in prison and a $4 million fine. If the court accepts his plea agreement, in March 2010, Bohannon will be sentenced to 10 years in prison and no fine.

Federal Betrayal of Informants (F.B.I.)

On February 8, 2010, FBI informant “Andrea” went public with her allegations that the Bureau double-crossed her and jeopardized her life, after she helped them in a risky operation against Mexican mob. In the documentary “Inside the FBI,” released by the Discovery channel, it was called “one of the largest Mexican Mafia takedowns in FBI history,” resulting in 40 arrests.

After the documentary aired, Andrea sent an e-mail to 10News TV station, describing her “problems with the FBI and their broken promises.” Andrea stated, “I knew if I wasn’t really dead, I was dead now.” Soon after sending that e-mail, she was arrested by police. Her mug shot and identity — which had been changed out of concerns for her safety — was posted on the jail’s Web site. She was charged with obstruction of justice.

Andrea’s arrest warrant stated, “Through FBI San Diego and copies of e-mails … the defendant … did communicate with the news media.” They claimed that by talking to the news media, Andrea somehow jeopardized their investigation. She spent 60 days in jail until a Judge dismissed all charges. “My life is a nightmare. They ruined my life. I don’t have anything,” Andrea said.

Former FBI agent, Denise Woo, pleaded guilty to a single misdemeanor count of disclosing confidential information for revealing an informant’s identity to the target of an investigation. Woo received a meager sentence of one year probation and a $1,000 fine. This was a far cry from the 10 years or more of prison time Ms. Woo was facing for the five felony charges brought against her, including making false statements to the FBI, disclosing a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act wiretap, and exposing a covert agent in violation of the Intelligence Identities Protection Act of 1982.

Measly penalties for jeopardizing lives of informants can hardly be seen as a deterrent for other law enforcement officials.

This is the thanks you get

In January of 2010, the judge refused to delay the prison sentence of Bradley C. Birkenfeld, a former Swiss banker-turned-informant. Birkenfeld, an American who lived in Switzerland for nearly 15 years, led authorities to the biggest tax fraud case in history. As the result of his disclosures, UBS, the largest bank in Switzerland, admitted to conspiring to defraud the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and agreed to pay $780 million to end an investigation into its activities. UBS also agreed to disclose to the IRS the names of 4,450 wealthy Americans suspected of dodging taxes through secret offshore accounts.

The Justice Department decided to prosecute Birkenfeld because he allegedly did not disclose enough details about his top client, Igor Olenicoff, an American billionaire and property developer. At the same time, the government had rejected Mr. Birkenfeld’s offer to wear a wiretap when talking to clients. In his interview with “60 Minutes”, Birkenfeld said: “I gave them the biggest tax fraud case in the world, I exposed 19,000 international criminals. And I’m going to jail for that?”

How much for your life?

A relationship between law enforcement officials and their informants is fragile and very important. Approximately 95% of all crimes are solved based on the priceless insight informants provide into the underworld of criminal enterprises, including transnational drug trafficking, white collar investigations and anti-terrorism efforts. Informants can be considered an endangered species, because they are hunted by criminals and often forsaken by the government, once they outlive their value. By revealing information about an informant’s cooperation, corrupt or careless law enforcement officials seal their doom.

Gang leaders often seek an official confirmation of an informant’s participation, before green-lighting their murder. Ironically, this corroborating evidence sometimes comes from law enforcement, when corrupt officials disclose identities of informants, obtained by accessing law enforcement databases.

State and local governments lack proper mechanisms for dealing with informants. The federal government started to regulate that murky area mainly because of public embarrassment it was facing. Informants get the short end of the stick, when the authorities are unable or unwilling to protect them. Many of them face certain death for helping law enforcement. The stakes are high, indeed. Accountability for jeopardizing lives should be directly proportionate to the damage such a betrayal of public trust can inflict. Only then we can ensure that the information keeps on coming to help the brave men and women of American law enforcement to solve crimes, to save lives, to protect and to serve.


How the FBI Works

The Federal Bureau of Investigation is the most powerful government agency in the United States. Some call it the largest law enforcement agency in the world. In its 100-year history, the agency has been at the heart of several infamous cases -- some successful, some controversial. In the age of terrorism, the FBI is as complicated and powerful as ever.

In this article, we'll find out what the FBI does, how it started, and how you can become an FBI agent. We'll take a look at some of the tools and techniques used by the FBI, and we'll learn about J. Edgar Hoover, the man who molded the Bureau into a powerful crime-solving agency.

­The FBI is the investigative arm of the U.S. Department of Justice, and its specific mission is constantly evolving. Currently, the FBI's focus is on stopping terrorism, corruption, organized crime, cyber crime and civil rights violations, as well as investigating serious crimes such as major thefts or murders. They also assist other law enforcement agencies when needed. Crimes that specifically fall under FBI jurisdiction include those in which the criminal crossed state lines, violations of federal controlled substance laws, and other violations of federal laws.

To dispel some myths about the FBI, here are some things that it doesn't do:

  • It is not a national police force state and local law enforcement agencies are not subservient to the FBI. It's simply a different jurisdiction for different kinds of crimes.
  • It doesn't "take over" cases from local agencies. If a crime partly involves FBI jurisdiction, or if it is serious enough to require FBI involvement, then the FBI forms a task force in which agents will work closely with state and local police.
  • The FBI does not prosecute cases. It provides investigative information to United States attorneys, who then use that information to decide whether to prosecute.

FBI agents can carry firearms, and their use is restricted by the same rules that restrict all other law enforcement offices in the U.S. Deadly force can only be used when necessary to prevent death or injury to the agent or others. Agents cannot wiretap suspects (use electronic means to listen in on telephone conversations) without receiving a court order. To get a court order, they have to prove probable cause that the suspect is engaged in an illegal activity, and that a wiretap will help them gain crucial information. A federal judge must approve and monitor the tap. Wiretapping without a court order is a felony.

While "FBI" is technically an abbreviation for Federal Bureau of Investigation, it also stands for the FBI's motto: Fidelity, Bravery and Integrity.

The FBI is part of the U.S. Department of Justice, which is headed by the U.S. Attorney General. The FBI exists under the Attorney General's authority to create investigative agents for the enforcement of federal laws (Sections 533 and 534, Title 28 of the U.S. Code). However, the Attorney General doesn't exercise direct authority over the FBI itself -- that's the job of the Inspector General. Before 2002, the Inspector General could investigate the FBI, but only with the permission of the Attorney General. In the wake of several scandals in 2001, including the revelation that FBI agent Robert Hanssen had been selling U.S. secrets to the Soviets for 15 years, Congress gave the Inspector General more oversight power [ref].

The President appoints the director of the FBI for a 10-year term. The current director is Robert S. Mueller, III. There are several deputy directors beneath him, and an executive assistant director heads each of the 11 divisions of the FBI. These divisions generally coincide with a type of crime the FBI investigates. For example, there is a counterterrorism division, a criminal investigation division and an information technology division.

The FBI is headquartered in the J. Edgar Hoover Building in Washington, D.C. Opened in 1974, the massive bunker-like building houses the director, most department heads and the world-famous FBI Crime Lab. (The FBI building tour is currently closed for renovations, but tours are scheduled to resume in Spring 2007.) FBI Field offices are located in most major cities -- there are 56 in total. A Special Agent in Charge heads each field office. An assistant director heads exceptionally large field offices in New York and Los Angeles. In addition, the FBI has about 400 resident agencies in smaller cities or other areas where an FBI presence is required.

As of March 31, 2006, the FBI employed more than 30,000 people, comprising 12,515 agents, and 17,485 support personnel, lab technicians and administrators. In the past, the FBI was considered an unfriendly place for women and minorities. In 1972, the FBI did not have a single female agent, and only a small percentage were minorities [ref]. Today, more than 13,000 FBI employees are women, with 7,691 minorities and over 1,000 people with disabilities [ref].

FBI funding is part of the Department of Justice and comes from the overall federal budget. In 2003, the FBI's total budget was $4.298 billion [ref].

Next, we'll learn about the history of the FBI.

The Department of Justice has always had the power to investigate federal crimes, but it didn't always have the means to do so. In the 19th century, government agencies often hired private detective firms such as the Pinkertons to solve crimes [ref]. In 1908, Illegal land sales in the western United States angered President Theodore Roosevelt, who then gave Attorney General Charles J. Bonaparte the authority to create a small bureau of detectives to investigate these crimes. By 1909, they were given an official name: The Bureau of Investigation.

Initially, very few crimes were under the Bureau's jurisdiction. Land fraud, national bank scams, anti-trust crimes and criminals who crossed state lines were under the Bureau's purview. Over the next decade, new laws expanded the scope of the federal government to investigate national crimes, and the number of agents increased as well. During World War I, agents focused on stopping espionage and sabotage, and cracking down on men who avoided the draft. By the 1920s, there were more than 300 agents and 300 support personnel operating a growing number of field offices [ref].

Until the early 1920s, unprofessional agents who were poorly trained and unqualified for their jobs plagued the Bureau of Investigation. Politics was a strong influence, and agents could be easily bribed to overlook crimes. Agents sometimes gathered incriminating information to discredit political opponents [ref, ref]. All that began to change in 1924, when Attorney General Harlan Fiske Stone elevated 29-year-old Assistant Director J. Edgar Hoover to the office of Director. Hoover immediately began reviewing procedures and agent records. He personally reviewed every agent's file, and was amazed at how many agents were on staff solely because of political connections or favors. He fired more than 100 of them within a few months [ref]. Then, Hoover raised the standards for hiring new agents, requiring college educations and law enforcement experience. He created rules and regulations for agent conduct and investigative procedure, ensuring that Bureau activity would be uniform across the nation. As Hoover put it, "We all should be concerned with only one goal -- the eradication of crime."

Hoover was also responsible for many reforms in the field of criminal investigation. He created the FBI Crime Lab in 1932, and opened a training academy in 1935, the same year the Bureau became the Federal Bureau of Investigation. This academy trained FBI agents as well as numerous local and state police officers. Another Hoover innovation was the Ten Most Wanted list. Created in 1950, this list provides photos and information on the ten fugitives (in no particular order) the FBI most wants to catch, and is posted in public places such as post offices. As of 2002, 458 people had been shown on the list, and 429 had been captured. Today, the Ten Most Wanted list is available online.

Through World War II and into the Cold War, the FBI continued to take on new duties under Hoover's guidance. The Bureau investigated German and Japanese spies during the war and rooted out Communists in the post-war years. The FBI's priorities changed once again in the wake of the 9/11 attacks now, counterterrorism is a top priority. The Bureau tracks known terrorists and cooperates with other agencies, such as the CIA, and intelligence and law enforcement agencies from other countries to gather information. Unlike many other government agencies, the FBI was not folded into the Department of Homeland Security -- it continues to operate within the Department of Justice.

  • July 26, 1908 - Created with no specific name referred to as Special Agent Force
  • March 16, 1909 - Bureau of Investigation
  • July 1, 1932 - U.S. Bureau of Investigation
  • August 10, 1933 - Division of Investigation (The Division also included the Bureau of Prohibition)
  • July 1, 1935 - Federal Bureau of Investigation

FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover amassed a lot of political power during his tenure -- much of it acquired by using the FBI to intimidate and gather incriminating information about his opponents. In his exposé of FBI corruption, "The Bureau," author Diarmuid Jeffreys wrote, "It was rumored that the director [Hoover] had detailed information about the sexual, political, and financial indiscretions of some of the country's most powerful and famous people and that he had used this information to blackmail his way to power and influence." Hoover remained in his position as FBI Director until his death, although several presidents considered firing him.

After Hoover's death in 1972, some of his personal files were transferred to former agent Mark Felt, the man who was later revealed as "Deep Throat" in the Watergate scandal. The files contained gossip on entertainers, intimidating letters sent to Martin Luther King, Jr., allegations that certain political candidates were homosexual, and documentation of illegal FBI wiretapping [ref]. Hoover's controversial (and mostly illegal) COINTELPRO operation targeted so-called radical groups that protested the Vietnam War or worked for civil rights, alongside other groups that promoted violent overthrow of the government.

At times, Hoover's drive to root out subversives within the United States bordered on paranoia. In a 1966 magazine interview, he proclaimed that American was threatened by "a new style in conspiracy -- conspiracy that is extremely subtle and devious and hence difficult to understand. A conspiracy reflected by questionable moods and attitudes, by unrestrained individualism, by nonconformism in dress and speech, even by obscene language, rather than by formal membership in specific organizations" [ref].

Both in life and in death, persistent rumors pegged Hoover as a deeply closeted homosexual and cross-dresser, and that proof was in the hands of the Mafia. However, solid evidence of these allegations has never been found.

Next, we'll learn about some of the investigative methods and tools used by the FBI.

In 1934, Congress granted FBI agents the authority to carry guns. For many years, the standard FBI gun was the .38. In the 1990s, the Bureau switched to 10mm semi-automatic handguns. These weapons proved to be too powerful for standard duty, and .40 caliber Smith & Wesson guns replaced them. During training at the FBI Academy, agents fire 3,000 .40 S&W rounds, as well as shotgun rounds and 10mm sub-machine gun rounds [ref].

FBI Divisions and Methods

Because the FBI's mission continues to evolve and has such a wide scope, it has developed many different divisions to process information and handle incidents. A few of these include the Criminal Justice Information Services Division (CJIS), the Laboratory Division (or "Crime Lab"), the Behavioral Analysis Unit and the Hostage Rescue Team. Let's look at each of these divisions in detail.

The Criminal Justice Information Services Division (CJIS) is the largest division within the FBI. This makes sense because the collection, analysis and comparison of crime scene data is some of the FBI's most important work. The CJIS comprises several programs, including the Integrated Automated Fingerprint Identification System (IAFIS). The IAFIS contains the fingerprints of more than 47 million subjects and is the largest database of its kind in the world. The CJIS also includes the National Crime Information Center (NCIC). It stores detailed information on crimes committed across the United States, regardless of which organization originally investigated the crime. Law enforcement agencies at the national, state and local levels can access both the IAFIS and the information contained in the NCIC, helping them identify criminals who may move from place to place by spotting patterns and similarities between crimes.

Law enforcement agencies can also use the services of the Laboratory Division. As one of the largest forensic laboratories in the world, the FBI Crime Lab has conducted more than one million forensic examinations and pioneers new techniques in forensic analysis. The laboratory conducts forensic investigations on all types of physical evidence, including DNA, blood, hair, fibers, latent fingerprints, documents, handwriting and firearms. Law enforcement agencies can also receive training from the Lab's Forensic Science Research and Training Center (FSRTC) at the FBI Academy. Laboratory examiners provide expert testimony in court cases that deal with forensic evidence.

The FBI has been a pioneer in the technique of criminal investigative analysis (sometimes called "profiling"), conducted by the staff of the Behavioral Analysis Unit. According to the division's Web site, criminal investigative analysis "is a process of reviewing crimes from both a behavioral and investigative perspective." Trained profilers look at the evidence and circumstances surrounding a crime or series of crimes and create a profile that describes various aspects of the suspect's personality. Gender, age, level of education, types of jobs and other elements can narrow investigations and help agents prioritize leads. Geographical profiling helps as well -- in this technique, profilers feed information about the locations of crimes into a computer, which creates an "area of interest" for investigators to focus on [ref]. Profilers require about a year of in-depth training, and an academic background in psychology or another social science is helpful. However, the most important trait of an FBI profiler is extensive experience working on investigations.

The FBI also has one of the top hostage rescue teams in the world -- the Hostage Rescue Team, a part of the Tactical Support Branch of the Critical Incident Response Group. Initially, the HRT was a tactical rescue unit outfitted like a SWAT team. Their job was to end a hostage situation with the use of force. The Hostage Negotiation Unit was separate, and was supposed to try resolving hostage situations peacefully before the HRT went in. An adversarial relationship grew between the two units, culminating in the controversial Ruby Ridge incident. In 1992, U.S. Marshalls were in a standoff with a heavily armed family in rural Idaho. The FBI went in, but the HRT acted contrary to advice from experienced negotiators and ordered snipers to fire on the family before the negotiators had a chance to end things peacefully. Snipers killed the mother of the family [ref]. In response to this and other incidents, the FBI created the Critical Incident Response Group, which combines the Crisis Negotiation Unit and the HRT into a single group with a single commander.

Following September 11, 2001, FBI Director Robert Mueller ordered operational and organizational changes to support changes in the FBI's focus: "prevention of terrorist attacks, countering foreign intelligence operations against the U.S., and addressing cybercrime-based attacks and other high-technology crimes" [ref]. The organization is also working on technological upgrades to meet these changes and provide stronger support to federal, state and local agencies.

For lots more information on the FBI and related topics, check out the links that follow.

To apply to become an FBI agent, you must have a four-year degree, hold American citizenship and be between the ages of 23 and 39. You must also have a clean record, without convictions for any serious crimes. Only about 10 percent of all applicants are accepted. In the wake of the 9/11 attacks, the number of applicants shot up dramatically. Once accepted, agents train at the FBI Academy, located on a U.S. Marine Corps base in Quantico, Va. The 385-acre academy opened in 1972. In addition to dormitories, a forensic training and research lab, firing ranges, a garage, pursuit driving track, gymnasium and library, the academy has an entire fake town called Hogan's Alley for training. The academy is not open for public tours.

While being an FBI agent can be dangerous, the Bureau has a remarkable safety record. In the 71-year period spanning 1925 to 1996, just 33 agents were killed in action.


Clashes with Ruckelshaus and resignation

Felt called his relationship with Ruckelshaus "stormy". [56] In his memoir, Felt describes Ruckelshaus as a "security guard sent to see that the FBI did nothing which would displease Mr. Nixon". [57]

In mid-1973 The New York Times published a series of articles about wiretaps that had been ordered by Hoover during his tenure at the FBI. Ruckelshaus believed that the information must have come from someone at the FBI.

In June 1973 Ruckelshaus received a call from someone claiming to be a New York Times reporter, telling him that Felt was the source of this information. [58] On June 21, Ruckelshaus met privately with Felt and accused him of leaking information to The New York Times, a charge that Felt adamantly denied. [50] Ruckelshaus told Felt to "sleep on it" and let him know the next day what he wanted to do. Felt resigned from the Bureau the next day, June 22, 1973, ending his thirty-one year career.

In a 2013 interview, Ruckelshaus noted the possibility that the original caller was a hoax. He said that he considered Felt's resignation "an admission of guilt" anyway. [58]

Ruckelshaus, who had served only as Acting Director, was replaced several weeks later by Clarence M. Kelley, who had been nominated by Nixon as FBI Director and confirmed by the Senate.


Inside Deep Throat was rated NC-17 by the Motion Picture Association of America for explicit sexual content specifically, explicit excerpts from the original film. It was the first film rated NC-17 to be released by Universal since Henry & June in 1990, which was the first film to receive the NC-17 rating.

An edited version received an R rating for "strong sexuality including graphic images, nudity and dialogue". In addition, Deep Throat copyright owner Arrow Productions edited the original, pornographic version of Deep Throat to get an "R" rating, and also submitted the original for reclassification. Both reedited films were released theatrically in 2005 in a double-bill.


Watch the video: HOW TO DEEP THROAT. Get Her to Deep Throat You u0026 Give You Epic Blow Jobs (December 2021).

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