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Digital Archive International History Declassified

June 07, 1960


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    Shelepin sets out a plan to discredit CIA chief Allen Dulles.
    "Note from KGB Chairman A. Shelepin to Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, Regarding Plan to Discredit CIA Chief Dulles," June 07, 1960, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Shelepin to CC CPSU, TsKhSD, fond 4, opis 13, delo 65, ll. 12-37 in Special Dossier of the Secretariat of the Central Committee 153/30c from 14.VI.60 (14 June 1960).
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[Handwritten note across top: “To the Secretariat [for signatures] (round the clock[2] among the secretaries) [—] M. Suslov, N. Mukhitdinov, O. Kuusinen”[2]]

USSR Top Secret

Committee of State Security

Council of Ministers of the USSR

7 June 1960


The failure of the intelligence action prepared by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) with the plane “Lockheed U-2” caused an aggravation of existing tensions between the CIA and other USA intelligence services and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and also provoked protests by the American public and certain members of the Congress, who are demanding investigation of the CIA activities.

The Committee of state security considers it advisable to make use of this newly complex situation and to carry out the following measures targeted at further discrediting CIA activity and compromising its leader Allen DULLES:

1. In order to activate a campaign by DULLES’ political and personal opponents:

a) to mail to them anonymous letters using the names of CIA officials criticizing its activity and the authoritarian leadership of DULLES;

b) to prepare a dossier which will contain publications from the foreign press and declarations of officials who criticized the CIA and DULLES personally, and to send it, using the name of one of members of the Democratic Party, to the Fulbright Committee [the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations] which is conducting an investigation into CIA activities in relation to the failure of the summit;

c) to send to some members of Congress, to the Fulbright Committee, and to the FBI specially prepared memos from two or three officials of the State Department with attached private letters, received (allegedly) from now deceased American diplomats, which would demonstrate CIA involvement in domestic decision-making, the persecution of foreign diplomats who took an objective stand, and which also would point out that, for narrow bureaucratic purposes, the CIA puts deliberately false data into information for the State Department;

d) to study the possibility and, if the opportunity presents itself, to prepare and disseminate through appropriate channels a document by former USA Secretary of State F. DULLES, which would make it clear that he exploited the resources of A. DULLES as leader of the CIA to fabricate compromising materials on his private and political adversaries;

e) to prepare, publish and disseminate abroad a satirical pamphlet on A. DULLES, using the American writer Albert KAHN who currently stays in Moscow to write the pamphlet.[4]

2. With the aim of further exposing the activities of American intelligence in the eyes of the public and to create preconditions with which the FBI and other USA intelligence services could substantiate their opinion about the CIA’s inability to conduct effective intelligence:

a) to fabricate the failure of an American agent “Fyodorov,” dropped in the Soviet Union by plane in 1952 and used by organs of the KGB in an operational game with the adversary.

To publish in the Soviet press an announcement about the arrest of “Fyodorov” as an American agent and, if necessary, to arrange a press-conference about this affair;

b) to agree with Polish friends about the exposure of the operational game led by the organs of the KGB along with the MSS PPR [Ministry of State Security of the Polish People’s Republic] with a “conduit” on the payroll of American intelligence of the Organization of Ukrainian nationalists (OUN)- “Melnikovists.”  To this end to bring back to Poland the Polish MSS agent “Boleslav,” planted in the course of this game on the OUN “conduit,” and to arrange for him to speak to the press and radio about subversive activity by American intelligence against the USSR and PPR.  To arrange, in addition, for public appearances by six American intelligence agents dropped on USSR and PPR territory as couriers of the “conduit” in the course of the game;

c) to suggest to the security bodies of the GDR that they arrange public trials for the recently arrested agents of American intelligence RAUE, KOLZENBURG, GLAND, USCH-INGER and others.

To arrange for wide coverage of the trials’ materials in the media of the GDR and abroad;

d) to disclose the operational game “Link” that the KGB conducts with the adversary and to organize public statements in the media aimed at foreign audiences by the agent “Maisky,” a former commander of the “security service” of the Foreign [Zakordonnikh chastei] OUN (ZCh OUN), who had been transferred to Ukrainian territory in 1951 and used by us for this game.

Along with revelations about the anti-people activity of the ZCh OUN, “Maisky” will reveal American and British intelligence’s use of the anti-Soviet organizations of Ukrainian emigration in subversive work in the Soviet Union;

e) Since about ten agents of the MSS of the GDR who “defected-in-place” to American intelligence have accomplished their missions and currently there is no prospect of their being further utilized, it should be suggested to our German friends to stage their return on the basis of disagreement with USA aggressive policies.  In particular, this measure should be carried out with the participation of our friends’ agent “Edelhardt” who had been assigned by an affiliate of American intelligence in West Berlin to gather spy information during his tourist trip around the USSR.  To organize one or two press-conferences on these affairs with a demonstration of the spy equipment he received from American intelligence;

f) to discuss with our Polish and Albanian friends the advisability of bringing to the attention of governmental circles and of the public of the United States the fact that the security agencies of Poland and Albania for a number of years had been deluding American intelligence in the operational games “Win” and “John” and had obtained millions of dollars, weapons, equipment, etc. from it.

3. To utilize, provided our Hungarian friends agree, the American intelligence documents they obtained in the U.S. mission in Budapest [the underlined words were inserted by hand—ed.] to compromise the CIA and to aggravate the differences between the CIA and other intelligence services by publicizing some of the documents or by sending them to the FBI.

If necessary, the necessary documents should be forged using the existing samples.

4. In order to create mistrust in the USA government toward the CIA and to produce an atmosphere of mutual suspicion within the CIA staff, to work out and implement an operation creating the impression of the presence in the CIA system of KGB agents recruited from among rank-and-file American intelligence officers, who, following their recruitment, admit their guilt, allegedly on the order of Soviet intelligence.  To stage for this purpose a relevant conversation within range of a [CIA] listening device, as well as the loss of an address book by a Soviet intelligence officer with the telephone number of a CIA official; to convey specially prepared materials to the adversary’s attention through channels exposed to him, etc.

5. To work out and implement measures on blowing the cover of several scientific, commercial and other institutions, used by the CIA for its spy activities.  In particular, to carry out such measures with regard to the “National Aeronautics and Space Administration” [NASA] and the “Informational Agency” of the USA [U.S. Information Agency (USIA)].

6. In order to disclose the subversive activities of the CIA against some governments, political parties and public figures in capitalist countries, and to foment mistrust toward Americans in the government circles of these countries, to carry out the following:

a) to stage in Indonesia the loss by American intelligence officer PALMER, who is personally acquainted with President SUKARNO and exerts a negative influence on him, a briefcase containing documents jointly prepared by the MFA [Ministry of Foreign Affairs] of the USSR which apparently belong to the CIA station in Jakarta and which provide evidence of USA plans to utilize American agents and rebel forces to overthrow the government of SUKARNO;[5]

b) to carry out measures, with regard to the arrest in February of this year in the UAR [United Arab Republic] of a group of Israeli intelligence agents, to persuade the public in the UAR and Arab countries that American intelligence is linked to the activities of those agents and coordinates its work in the Arab East with Israeli intelligence.

To compromise, to this end, American intelligence officers KEMP and CONNOLLY who work under cover of the UN commission observing the armistice in Palestine;

c) to prepare and implement measures to make public the fact that American intelligence made use of the Iranian newspapers “Fahrman” and “Etelliat,” specifically mentioning the names of their agents (Abbas SHAHENDEH, Jalal NEMATOLLAKHI);

d) to publish articles in the foreign press showing the interference of American intelligence in the domestic affairs of other states, using as an example the illegal American police organization in Italy, found and liquidated at the end of 1959, that “worked on” Italian political parties under the direction of one of the diplomats at the American embassy;

e) to prepare and publicize a document by an American intelligence officer in Japan Robert EMMENSE in the form of a report to the USA ambassador [to Japan Douglas] MACARTHUR [II] into which information will be inserted about a decision allegedly taken by American intelligence to relocate “Lockheed U-2” planes temporarily to Japan, and then, in secrecy from the Japanese government, to return them to their old bases.

7. To work out measures which, upon implementation, would demonstrate the failure of the CIA efforts to actively on a concrete factual basis use various émigré centers for subversive work against countries in the socialist camp.

In particular, using the example of the anti-Soviet organization “The Union of the Struggle for the Liberation of the Peoples of Russia” (SBONR), to discredit in the eyes of American taxpayers the activities of American intelligence in funding émigré organizations.  To bring to light, along with other measures, real or forged American intelligence documents on its finances and guidance of subversive activities of the SBONR.

8. With the means available of the KGB to promote inquiries in the parliaments of England, France and other countries of their governments about their attitude to the hostile actions of USA intelligence intended to aggravate international tension.

9. To arrange public appearances by distinguished public and political figures of the East and West with appropriate declarations denouncing the aggressive activity of American intelligence.

10. To prepare and publish in the bourgeois press, through available means, a number of articles on the activities of the CIA and its leaders on the following questions:

a)  about how A. DULLES used his position to promote his own enrichment.  In particular, to demonstrate that DULLES gets big bribes from the “Lockheed” corporation for allocating contracts to produce reconnaissance planes.  To indicate that the source of this information is the wife of a vice-president of “Lockheed” corporation and well-known American pilot Jacqueline COCHRAN, who allegedly leaked it in France on her way to the USSR in 1959;

b) about the CIA’s violation of traditional principles of non-partisanship on the part of the USA intelligence service.  To demonstrate that in reality the CIA is the tool of reactionary circles in the Republican Party, that it ignores the Senate, the Congress and public opinion in the country;

c) about the unjustifiably large expenditures of the CIA on its staff and its multitudinous agents and about the failure of its efforts to obtain information on the military-economic potential and scientific-technical achievements of the Soviet Union;

d) about the unprecedented fact that the American embassy in Budapest is hosting Cardinal MINDSZENTY, furnishing evidence that the Americans are flouting the sovereign rights of the Hungarian People’s Republic and demonstrating the sloppy work of American intelligence that damages American prestige in the eyes of world public opinion;[6]

e) about the CIA’s flawed methods of preparing spy cadres in the [training] schools at Fort Jersey (South Carolina) and in Monterey (California).  To draw special attention to futility of efforts by the CIA and by DULLES personally to build a reliable intelligence [network] with emigrants from the USSR and the countries of people’s democracies.  To present a list of names of American intelligence officers and agents who have refused to work for DULLES on political, moral and other grounds;

f) about utilization by the CIA leadership of senior officials from the State Department, including ambassadors, for subversive and intelligence operations that cause great harm to USA prestige.  In particular, to cite the example of DULLES’ use of American ambassador [to South Korea Walter P.] MCCONAUGHY in subversive plans in Cambodia and then in South Korea;

g) about the activities of American intelligence in West Berlin in covering officers of West German intelligence services with documents of American citizens.

11. To approach the state security leadership in countries of people’s democracy requesting that they use available means to discredit the CIA and to compromise A. DULLES.

Asking for your agreement to aforementioned measures,


[signature] (A. Shelepin)

[1].  Shelepin to CC CPSU, 7 June 1960, TsKhSD, fond 4, opis 13, delo 65, ll. 12-37 in Special Dossier of the Secretariat of the Central Committee 153/30c from 14.VI.60 (14 June 1960).  The 7 June 1960 KGB document’s existence first became public knowledge in January 1993 when it was described by Russian historian Vitaly S. Lelchuk to the CWIHP Conference on New Evidence on Cold War History; the document was also referred to in Vitaly S. Lelchuk and Yefim I. Pivovar, “Mentalitet Sovietskogo Obshchestva i Kholodnaya Voina” [“The Mentality of Soviet Society and the Cold War”], Otechestvennaya Istoria [Fatherland History] 6 (Nov.-Dec. 1993), 70-71.

[2].  That formula meant that the decision was already taken at the top and an agreement of the rest of the Central Committee Secretaries was just a mere formality. In other cases, when no clear consensus existed or a leader was not sure himself, he put it to a vote of the Politburo or the Secretariat.

[2].  Mikhail Suslov, Nikolai Mukhitdinov, and Otto Kuusinen were three full members (Secretaries) of the CC CPSU Secretariat.

[3].  This document was sent by the KGB to the Secretariat, the technical body of the Central Committee of the CPSU, which usually dealt with more routine issues than the Politburo.

[4].  [Ed. note:  This evidently refers to the American writer Albert E. Kahn (1912-1979), a journalist and author sympathetic to socialism who had been blacklisted during the McCarthy era and who (after recovering his passport, which the government had taken from him for several years) spent the first half of 1960 in Moscow working on a book on the Bolshoi ballerina Galina Ulanova (subsequently published as Days With Ulanova (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1962).  Contacted by CWIHP in Helena, Montana, where he is the state director of the Montana Nature Conservancy, Kahn’s son Brian Kahn stated that to his knowledge his father was never approached to write a publication ridiculing Allen W. Dulles and never did so; and that, while sympathetic to socialism and the USSR, he would not have written anything at the direction of Soviet intelligence.  “[My father] would write a pamphlet on a political issue that he believed in; but he wouldn’t do it at the request of anybody,” said Brian Kahn.  “He would never do it if he were aware that he was being manipulated; that he would offend his sense of integrity as a writer.”  Brian Kahn said his father once met in the Kremlin with Nikita Khrushchev and proposed collaborating with him on an autobiography, but that the Soviet leader did not pursue the idea, which Kahn later implemented with Pablo Casals (Joys and Sorrows (Simon & Schuster, 1970)).  Albert Kahn also authored, among other books, Sabotage! The Secret War Against America (Little, Brown, 1942), an expose of pro-fascist activities in the United States; The Great Conspiracy: The Secret War Against the Soviet Union (Little, Brown, 1946), an account of Western actions against the USSR highly sympathetic to Moscow; High Treason (Lear, 1950); Smetana and the Beetles (Random House, 1967), a satirical pamphlet about Stalin’s daughter, Svetlana Alliluyeva; and The Matusow Affair (Moyer Bell Ltd., 1987), a posthumously-published account of a McCarthy-era case.]

[5].  The KGB in this case wanted to kill two birds with one stone. Fears that Americans could influence a “third world” communist leader were pervasive and not without foundation. In 1979 similar fears about Hafizullah Amin, leader of the Afghan “revolution,” probably helped convince Politburo member Yuri Andropov, former KGB chief, of the necessity of Soviet military intervention to “save” this country.

[6].  Jozsef Cardinal Mindszenty, the Roman Catholic Primate, was arrested by the Hungarian communist regime in 1948 and sentenced to life imprisonment on treason and currency charges in 1949 (reduced to house arrest in 1955).  During the Hungarian October revolution of 1956 he was freed, but, after the Soviet intervention, the U.S. embassy in Budapest gave him political asylum until his death in 1971.