The Glorious Amateurs: OSS Turns 75!

“The CIA owes a debt of gratitude to the OSS and to Donovan, the charismatic leader and moving force behind it.”

CIA Official website — June 1 2017

The Office of Strategic Services (OSS) is the precursor of today’s CIA. Created on June 13, 1942, just after America’s entry into WWII, President Franklin D. Roosevelt appointed William “Wild Bill” Donovan, a highly decorated WWI officer, as Director of the OSS.

Throughout the month of June, the CIA website will highlight a different OSS officer every day. Follow us on Twitter: @INTEL_TODAY

Donovan organized the OSS to reflect his vision of a national intelligence center, uniquely combining research and analysis, covert operations, counterintelligence, espionage, and technical development.

Today’s CIA derives a significant institutional and spiritual legacy from the OSS. In some cases, this legacy descended directly: key personnel, files, funds, procedures, and contacts. In other cases, the legacy is less tangible but no less real: the professionalization of intelligence, the organizational esprit de corps, the essential role of national intelligence in policy-making and war fighting.

The CIA owes a debt of gratitude to the OSS and to Donovan, the charismatic leader and moving force behind it.

This month, as we celebrate OSS’s 75th anniversary, we will showcase some of the fine women and men who made up America’s first intelligence agency.

Some stories will be quite familiar to many of you, while others highlight officers whose stories were lost to history only to be rediscovered after digging through the yellowed files of dusty archives.

And some characters are famous personalities in their own right, but whose affiliation with OSS may surprise you.

OSS Officer of the Day

June1: OSS Director: General William “Wild Bill” Donovan

June 2: CIA Trailblazer: Eloise Page

June 3: …

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REFERENCES

The Glorious Amateurs: OSS Turns 75! — CIA Official website

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The Glorious Amateurs: OSS Turns 75!

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