Central Intelligence Agency - CL.
Written by the CIA's first official historian in 1952 and 1953 and declassified only in 1989, this account of the agency's establishment and early years should become a basic document in studies of U.S. government organization and power struggles of the late 1940s. Darling is not an unbiased observer; the text clearly reflects his conviction that ``a single authority ought to have charge of collecting secret information outside of the United States''--an assumption not shared by all of this book's major players. When the wartime Office of Strategic Services was dissolved by President Truman, the State Department, the military and the FBI all made bids to provide the U.S. with intelligence. Jockeying for control becomes a recurring theme as Darling follows the CIA from its origins as an interdepartmental advisory committee with limited authority (and none to gather intelligence), through its confirmation by Congress as a distinct entity with its own budget and functions, to a mature organization managing psychological operations and ``black propaganda'' in the Cold War. (Nov.)