The CIA uses philanthropic foundations as the most effective conduit to channel large sums of money to Agency projects without alerting the recipients to their source. From the early 1950s to the present the CIA’s intrusion into the foundation field was and is huge. A U.S. Congressional investigation in 1976 revealed that nearly 50% of the 700 grants in the field of international activities by the principal foundations were funded by the CIA. The CIA considers foundations such as Ford“The best and most plausible kind of funding cover”. The collaboration of respectable and prestigious foundations, according to one former CIA operative, allowed the Agency to fund “a seemingly limitless range of covertaction programs affecting youth groups, labor unions, universities, publishing houses and other privateinstitutions”. The latter included “human rights” groups beginning in the 1950s to the present. One of the most important “private foundations” collaborating with the CIA over a significant span of time in major projects in the cultural Cold War is the Ford Foundation.
CIA & The Ford Foundation
By the late 1950s the Ford Foundation possessed over $3 billion in assets. The leaders of the Foundation were in total agreement with Washington’s post-WWII projection of world power. A noted scholar of the period writes:
“At times it seemed as if the Ford Foundation was simply an extension of government in the area of international cultural propaganda. The foundation had a record of close involvement in covert actions inEurope, working closely with Marshall Plan and CIA officials on specific projects”. This is graphicallyillustrated by the naming of Richard Bissell as President of the Foundation in 1952. In his two years inoffice Bissell met often with the head of the CIA, Allen Dulles, and other CIA officials in a “mutual search” for new ideas. In 1954 Bissell left Ford to become a special assistant to Allen Dulles in January 1954. Under Bissell, the Ford Foundation (FF) was the “vanguard of Cold War thinking”.
One of the FF first Cold War projects was the establishment of a publishing house, Inter-cultural Publications, and the publication of a magazine Perspectives in Europe in four languages. The FF purpose according to Bissell was not “so much to defeat the leftist intellectuals in dialectical combat (sic) as to lure them away from their positions”. The board of directors of the publishing house was completely dominated by cultural Cold Warriors. Given the strong leftist culture in Europe in the post-war period, Perspectives failed to attract readers and went bankrupt.
Another journal Der Monat funded by the Confidential Fund of the U.S. military and run by Melvin Lasky was taken over by the FF, to provide it with the appearance of independence.
In 1954 the new president of the FF was John McCloy. He epitomized imperial power. Prior to becoming president of the FF he had been Assistant Secretary of War, president of the World Bank, High Commissioner of occupied Germany, chairman of Rockefeller’s Chase Manhattan Bank, Wall Street attorney for the big seven oil companies and director of numerous corporations. As High Commissioner in Germany, McCloy had provided cover for scores of CIA agents.
Than CIA’s head Allen Dulles’ best bud, John McCloy,is shown here with David Rockefeller and Chase Manhattan executives after he successfully merged the Warburg’s Manhattan bank with Rockefeller’s Chase bank. A top Rockefeller leutenant, McCloy acted for decades on the family’s behalf as an adviser to presidents and dictators. He even shared a box with Hitler and Goering at the 1936 Olympics.
McCloy integrated the FF with CIA operations. He created an administrative unit within the FF specifically to deal with the CIA. McCloy headed a three person consultation committee with the CIA to facilitate the use of the FF for a cover and conduit of funds. With these structural linkages the FF was one of those organizations the CIA was able to mobilize for political warfare against the anti-imperialist and pro-communist left.
Official photo of Warren Commissioners that covered-up JFK Assassination. Allen Dulles(than head of the CIA) is seen second from left. To his right is John J. McCloy, lawyer and troubleshooter for both the Warburg and Rockefeller family. McCloy was appointed as a member of the Warren Commission, purely for the purposes of disguising Rockefeller’s crime.
Numerous CIA “fronts” received major FF grants. Numerous supposedly “independent” CIA sponsored cultural organizations, human rights groups, artists and intellectuals received CIA/FF grants. One of the biggest donations of the FF was to the CIA organized Congress for Cultural Freedom which received $7 million by the early 1960s. Numerous CIA operatives secured employment in the FF and continued close collaboration with the Agency.
McCloy (extreme left) with the rest of the gang, the other six hacks & fraudsters, of the Warren Commission, as they present the phony report to President Ford.
From its very origins there was a close structural relation and interchange of personnel at the highest levels between the CIA and the FF. This structural tie was based on the common imperial interests which they shared. The result of their collaboration was the proliferation of a number of journals and access to the mass media which pro-U.S. intellectuals used to launch vituperative polemics against Marxists and other anti-imperialists. The FF funding of these anti-Marxists organizations and intellectuals provided a legal cover for their claims of being “independent” of government funding (CIA).
One prominent journalist, Andrew Kopkind, wrote of a deep sense of moral disillusionment with the private foundation-funded CIA cultural fronts. Kopkind wrote
“The distance between the rhetoric of the open society and the reality of control was greater than anyone thought. Everyone who went abroad for an American organization was, in one way or another, awitness to the theory that the world was torn between communism and democracy and anything in betweenwas treason. The illusion of dissent was maintained: the CIA supported socialist cold warriors, fascist cold warriors, black and white cold warriors. The catholicity and flexibility of the CIA operations were major advantages. But it was a sham pluralism and it was utterly corrupting”.
When a U.S. journalist Dwight Macdonald who was an editor of Encounter (a FF-CIA funded influential cultural journal) sent an article critical of U.S. culture and politics it was rejected by the editors, working closely with the CIA. In the field of painting and theater the CIA worked with the FF to promote abstract expressionism against any artistic expression with a social content, providing funds and contacts for highly publicized exhibits in Europe and favorable reviews by “sponsored” journalists. The interlocking directorate between the CIA, the Ford Foundation and the New York Museum of Modern Art lead to a lavish promotion of “individualistic” art remote from the people — and a vicious attack on European painters, writers and playwrights writing from a critical realist perspective. “Abstract Expressionism” whatever its artist’s intention became a weapon in the Cold War.
The Ford Foundation’s history of collaboration and interlock with the CIA in pursuit of U.S. world hegemony is now a well-documented fact. The remaining issue is whether that relationship continues into the new Millenium after the exposures of the 1960s? The FF made some superficial changes. They are more flexible in providing small grants to human rights groups and academic researchers who occasionally dissent from U.S. policy. They are not as likely to recruit CIA operatives to head the organization.
More significantly they are likely to collaborate more openly with the U.S. government in its cultural and educational projects, particularly with the Agency of International Development.
The FF has in some ways refined their style of collaboration with Washington’s attempt to produce worldcultural domination, but retained the substance of that policy. For example the FF is very selective in the funding of educational institutions. Like the IMF, the FF imposes conditions such as the “professionalization” of academic personnel and “raising standards.” In effect this translates into the promotion of social scientific work based on the assumptions, values and orientations of the U.S. empire; to have professionals de-linked from the class struggle and connected with pro-imperial U.S. academics and foundation functionaries supporting the neo-liberal model.
As in the 1950s and 60s the Ford Foundation today has developed a sophisticated strategy of funding human rights groups (HRGs) that appeal to Washington to change its policy while denouncing U.S. adversaries their “systematic” violations. The FF supports HRGs which equate massive state terror by the U.S. with individual excesses of anti-imperialist adversaries. The FF finances HRGs which do not participate in anti-globalization and anti-neoliberal mass actions and which defend the Ford Foundation as a legitimate and generous “non-governmental organization”.
In the current period of a major U.S. military-political offensive, Washington has posed the issue as “terrorism or democracy,” just as during the Cold War it posed the question as “Communism or Democracy.” In both instances the Empire recruited and funded “front organizations, intellectuals and journalists to attack its anti-imperialist adversaries and neutralize its democratic critics. The Ford Foundation is well situated to replay its role as collaborator to cover for the New Cultural Cold War.
CIA’s Trojan Horse reaches India
India had been sucked into the spiral of this Cultural Cold War since a long time. However with the US economy already bust and the EU falling like dominos; it is again the East where the West would anchor it’s sinking ship of so called Exceptionalism that fuels the Western Civilization. The game on the Indian side is very well crafted and carried out through CIA’s Trojan Horse which has entered into the heart of Indian Politics – Delhi.
A new political party pledging to sweep corruption from the Indian capital made surprising gains in state elections, grabbing a huge share of votes from the incumbent Congress party and leaving Delhi with no clear leader on Monday — and no party willing to form a coalition.
The fledgling Aam Aadmi Party, or Common Man’s Party, seized 28 of Delhi’s 70 assembly seats just nine months after its formation. The Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party took first place with 31, while Congress was left with a meagre eight, a stunning decline from its previous 43.
All three ruled out entering into a governing alliance, leaving the capital in a leadership lurch and raising the possibility of new elections.
CIA lays the “Foundation” of Indian Policymaking
The Ford Foundation, which completes six decades in India next year, provides a continuing flow of grants to institutions, think-tanks, civil society, and even farmer groups, to carry out research and advocacy work. The sums are not inconsequential—about $15 million (about Rs 70 crore) a year. And the recipients—320 grants, over the past four years—are the who’s who of civil society and advocacy groups in India.
Its representative, Steven Solnick, said the Foundation’s last installment to Kabir (an NGO run by Arvind Kejriwal and Manish Sisodia) was in 2010. “Our first grant to the NGO was of $1,72,000 in 2005 ; the second was in 2008 of $1,97,000,” he told Business Standard.
Kabir, run by Arvind Kejriwal and Manish Sisodia, key figures in AAP(Aam Aadmi Party), has received $400,000 from the Ford Foundation in the last three years.
Link for $197,000 – now removed by Ford. Refer screenshot of the same below.
In reply to an RTI query that questioned the funding and expenditure of Kabir, the organisation has disclosed that they have received funds from the Ford Foundation (Rs 86,61,742), PRIA (Rs 2,37,035), Manjunath Shanmugam Trust (Rs 3,70,000), Dutch Embassy (Rs 19,61,968), Association for India’s Development (Rs 15,00,000), India’s friends Association (Rs 7,86,500), United Nationals Development Programme (Rs12,52,742) while Rs 11,35,857 were collected from individual donations between 2007 to 2010.
Interestingly, a major part of the funding to an organisation that is prominent in the “War against corruption” has come from abroad and mainly from the United States. Apart from the UNDP, Ford Foundation and the India Friends Association are US-based organisations, while PRIA and Association for India’s Development are headquartered in Asia.
The foundation, on its part, makes no bones about its neo-liberal agenda, broadly pro-market, seeking accountability in governance, and promoting marginalised groups. It funds a small number of institutions, but chooses effectively. At a post-budget meeting two years back, it was noted that all the think-tanks represented (NCAER, NIPFP, ICRIER and the Centre for Policy Research) on the dais received grants from the foundation. Academicians and scholars from these think-tanks are regularly consulted by the government on various policy issues.
On whether the views of these intellectuals actually get reflected in subsequent policies, Planning Commission deputy chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia declines to comment. “I don’t really have a view on it,” he says. He does, however, concede that India’s association with the foundation “is something that has been on for a long time”.
Moreover, two of core members are also Magsaysay award winners which are endowed by the Ford Foundation and Rockefeller.
As far as the Magsaysay Award winners are concerned, this award is an American award for Asians established and funded by the Rockefeller Foundation ostensibly in memory of Ramon Magsaysay, the former President of Philippines.
According to well-placed sources in the U. S. Intelligence community opposed to the State Department’s policy toward the Philippines, $30 million in covert funds was supplied to the Philippine opposition to help finance its presidential campaign. This $30 million was laundered through Hong Kong, where the money was converted into the Philippine peso at the black market rate of 20 pesos to the dollar.
Philippine sources reported that the money had, been in part funneled into the CIA-controlled citizens election watch group, called Namfrel , the National Movement for a Free Election, which was originally created in 1953 in order to bring Ramon Magsaysay into power. Namfrel was central in the State Department’s policy of intervening into the Philippines election.
In 1957, the Rockefeller Foundation established the Ramon Magsaysay Prize for community leaders in Asia. It was named after Ramon Magsaysay, president of the Philippines, a crucial ally in the US campaign against Communism in Southeast Asia. In 2000, the Ford Foundation established the Ramon Magsaysay Emergent Leadership Award. The Magsaysay Award is considered a prestigious award among artists, activists and community workers in India. M.S. Subbulakshmi and Satyajit Ray won it, so did Jayaprakash Narayan and journalists, P. Sainath. In general, it has become a gentle arbiter of what kind of activism is “acceptable” and what is not. In reality the award is the living memory of the dictatorial president of Philippines known for the murder of thousands of communist guerrillas during the Huk Rebellion under US-planned anti-communist counter-insurgency operations. It explains the silence of the anti-corruption group against corporations and the private sector.
For more details read : CIA manipulation of 1953 elections
This perfectly fits in with a recent shift in the US policy of association with India, which is now focusing on building state-to-state partnerships by “engaging Indian state and local leaders” throughout the country on “topics of mutual interest”. Civil society groups and think-tanks are expected to play an important role in this. As Prof Anil Gupta of IIM-Ahmedabad observes, “Their influence is far beyond what is recognized, and not always benign.”
Should NGOs receiving grants from international agencies like the Ford Foundation and others be barred from participating in the shaping of public policy?
And are these civil society groups working as stooges of the West to execute an “American agenda” ?
These are the question the Aam Aadmi has to answer.
Not the copyrighted ones; but the real Aam Aadmi.
Update : Just last night CIA’s Urban Guerrilla Unit demolished Lenin’s statue in Kiev, Ukraine same as they did with Saddam’s as part of a psychological warfare protesting against Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych staunch stand against EU and East European countries and refusal to sign the free-trade agreement that would devastate his nation’s remaining industry already devastated by IMF.
The Cultural Cold War: The CIA and the World of Arts and Letters
Ford Foundation, a philanthropic facade for the CIA
CIA manipulation of 1953 elections
http://www.fordfoundation.org/grants/grantdetails?grantid=107117 (link dead; snapshot added)
John J. McCloy
Flowing The Way Of Their Money
Claims that Hazare’s movement is US-funded baseless: Arvind
‘We’re No Policy Advisors’
Kejriwal Admits, His NGO Took Money From Ford Foundation 2 Years Back
It’s Official – US-Based Ford Foundation Funding Anna’s Movement