April 15
William Casey and the Revitalization of Covert Operations

William Casey (far left) touring Afghanistan in the company of mujahadeen fighters. A devotee of covert operations, Casey's CIA undertook initiatives from Afghanistan to Central America.
Today's class centers on the legacy of William Casey. We'll be returning in a few weeks to his activities in Afghanistan; for tonight, we'll be focusing on Central America. A hard-line anticommunist, Casey entered the CIA committed to ousting the Sandinistas from power in Nicaragua. And--allied with an equally secrecy-minded National Security Council staff--he helped trigger the most serious political scandal of the 1980s.



Robert Gates, From the Shadows, pp. 198-225, 242-249, 293-316, 390-403.


bullet Reagan's presidential finding--a guide for permissible CIA activities in Nicaragua
bullet William Casey himself urges a more aggressive effort to build public support for the contras
bullet At this well-attended meeting, top administration officials wonder how to obtain funds for the contras
bullet The CIA counsel's office examines how to get around congressional legislation

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