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The Shadow Government: Notes from Prouty’s “The Secret Team: The CIA and its Allies in Control of the United States and the World”

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Compiled by Dr. Eric T. Karlstrom, Emeritus Professor of Geography, November 17, 2016

“Where else could a red-blooded American boy lie, kill, cheat, steal, rape and pillage with the sanction and blessing of the All-Highest.” — George Hunter White, CIA MKULTRA project manager

ETK Introduction: I have become increasingly aware, during my “post-retirement” research, that, as Prouty declares in the title of his book, “The Secret Team,” “the CIA and its allies control the United States and the World.” They do so covertly and through (always illegal) covert operations.

The CIA’s common practice of conducting secret “counter-insurgency” operations in targeted countries (including the U.S.) follow a pattern. Generally speaking, through covert placement of their secret advisers and secret agents, they destabilize target nations by fomenting tribal/cultural/racial differences within those nations. Typically, they then arm both sides, escalate tensions, and contrive a “trigger incident” designed to result in maximum violence, chaos, confusion, death, and destruction. Ex-CIA station chief, John Stockwell, estimates that, by utilizing these kinds of tactics, the CIA is responsible for the deaths of over 6 million people during its Cold War interventions in Third World nations.

Thus, the CIA is guilty of massive crimes against humanity. Based on even minimum national or international legal standards, many of its members should be incarcerated and the CIA itself should be “broken into a thousand pieces,” as President Kennedy suggested near the end of his first presidential term…. shortly before the CIA/Wall Street faction publically executed him on November 22, 1963. This day and this crime must forever live in infamy in American and world history, for it was a covert coup d’etat of the legitimate American government by the CIA/Pentagon and its Wall Street backers.

Of course, the next major American coup occurred on September 11, 2001. This coup was orchestrated by the CIA/Pentagon in collusion with the “neo-con” Project for a New American Century,” Wall Street and Israel. As abundantly proven in my website and many other sources, 9/11 was the most dramatic of a long series of false-flag, state-sponsored, synthetic terror events contrived by American/Israeli/British intelligence. How stupid do they think we are?

Prouty’s book is important because it faithfully documents the early phases of the “runaway train” of the CIA.


From cover jacket of 2008 edition of “The Secret Team:”

“Fletcher Prouty, a colonel in the United States Air Force, was a liaison officer between the Pentagon and the CIA between 1955 and 1963, and coordinated operations between the military and intelligence…

Prouty’s allegations – (include) that the U-2 Crisis of 1960 was arranged to sabotage negotiations between Eisenhower and Khrushchev, and that Kennedy was assassinated to keep the U.S. in Vietnam… The Secret Team raises the same crucial question today that it did in 1973: who is really calling the shots. ”

From Preface 1972:

For nine consecutive, long years during those crucial days from 1955 through January 1, 1964, I was one of those briefing officers. I had the unique assignment of being the “Focal Point” officer for contacts between the CIA and the Department of Defense on matters pertaining to the military support of the Special Operations of that Agency (CIA). In that capacity, I worked with Allen Dulles (CIA Director) and John Foster Dulles (Secretary of State), several Secretaries of Defense, and Chairmen of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, as well as many others in key governmental places. My work took me to more than sixty countries and to CIA offices and covert activities all over the world- from such hot spots as Saigon and to such remote places as the South Pole.

… The briefing officer reads all of the messages, regardless of classification. He talks to a number of other highly qualified men. He may even have staff specialists spread out all over the world upon whom he may call at any time for information. Working support of the “Focal Point” office, which I headed, there were hundreds of experts and agents concealed in military commands throughout the world who were part of a network I had been directed to establish in 1955-1956 as a stipulation of National Security Council directive 5412, March 1954.

…. I am interested in setting forth and explaining what “secrecy” and the “cult of containment” (i.e., anti-Communism) really mean and what they have done to our way of life and to our country…. I have known countless men who participated in one way or another in these unusual events of the Twentieth Century history. Many of these men have been and still are members of the Secret Team. It also explains why much of it has been pure propaganda and close to nationwide “brainwashing” of the American public.

… Consider the past half century. How many major events- really major events- have there been that simply do not ring true? How many times has the entire world been shaken by alarms of major significance, only to find that the events either did not happen at all, or if they did, that they had happened in a manner quite unlike the original story? The war in Vietnam is undoubtedly the best example of this. Why is it that after more than thirty years of clandestine and overt involvement in Indochina, no one had been able to make a logical case for what we had been doing there and to explain adequately why we had become involved; and what our real and valid objectives in that part of the world were?

The mystery behind all of this lies in the area we know as “Clandestine activity,” “intelligence operations,” “secrecy,” and “cover stories,” used on a national and international scale. It is the object of this book to bring reality and understanding into this vast unknown area.

FLETCHER PROUTY, Colonel, U.S. Air Force (Ret’d)


“Like it or not, we now live in a new age of “One World.” This is the age of global companies, or global communications and transport, of global food supply and finance…. And just around the corner… global accommodation of political systems. In this sense, there are no home markets, no isolated markets and no markets outside the global network.

It is time to face the fact that true national sovereignty no longer exists. We live in a world of big business, big lawyers, big bankers, even bigger money-men and big politicians. It is the world of “The Secret Team” and its masters. We are now, despite common mythology to the contrary, the most dependent society that has ever lived, and the future of the viability of that infrastructure of that society is unpredictable. It is crumbling.

…. As this One World infrastructure emerges it increases the percentage of our total dependence upon remote food production capacity to the mass production capability and transport means of enormous companies operating under the global policy guidance of such organizations as the Chartered Institute of Transport in London, and the international banking community.

…. In such as world, the Secret Team is the functional element of the dominant power. It is the point of the spear and is neither military nor police. It is covert: and the best (or worst) of both. It gets the job done whether it has political authorization and direction, or not. In this capacity, it acts independently. It is lawless. It operates everywhere with the best of all supporting facilities from special weaponry and advanced communications, with the assurance that its members will never be prosecuted. The Power Elite or High Cabal need not be Royalty in these days. They are their equal or better.

Note with care, it is labeled a “Team.” This is because as with any highly professional team it has its managers, its front office, and its owners. These are the “Power Elite” to whom it is beholden. They are always anonymous, and their network is ancient and world-wide.

…. This book is about a major element of this real power structure of the world and of its impact upon the CIA and its allies around the world. It is based upon much personal experience generally derived from my military service from mid-1941 to 1964: U.S. Army Cavalry, U.S. Army Armored Force, U.S. Army Air Corps and Army Air Force, and finally the U.S. Air Force; and specifically from my special assignments in the Pentagon from 1955 to 1964.

… I pointed out years ago in public pronouncements that the CIA’s most important “Cover Story” is that of an “intelligence” agency. Of course, the CIA does make use of “intelligence” and its assumed role of “intelligence gathering,” but that is largely a front for its primary interest, “Fun and Games”… as the “Old Boys” or “Jedburghs” of the WWII period Office of Strategic Services (OSS) called it.

The CIA is the center of a vast, and amorphous mechanism that specializes in Covert Operations… or as Allen Dulles always called it, “Peacetime Operations.” In this sense, the CIA is the willing tool of a higher level High Cabal, that may include representatives and highly skilled agents of the CIA and other instrumentality’s of the government, certain cells of the business and professional world and, almost always, foreign participation. It is this ultimate Secret Team, its allies, and its method of operation that are the principal subject of this book.

It must be made clear that at the heart of Covert Operations is the denial by the “operator,” i.e. the U.S. Government, of the existence of national sovereignty. The covert operator can, and does, make the world his playground…. including the U.S.A.

…. The Cold War was the most expensive war in history. R. Buckminster Fuller wrote in Crunch of Giants:

“We can very properly call World War I the million dollar war and World War II the billion dollar war and World War III (Cold War) the trillion dollar war.”

The power structure that kept the Cold War at that level of cost and intensity had been spearheaded by the Secret Team and its multinational covert operations, to wit:

“This is the fundamental game of the Secret Team. They have this power because they control secrecy and secret intelligence and because they have the ability to take advantage of the most modern communications system in the world, of global transportation systems, of quantities of weapons of all kinds, and when needed, the full support of a world-wide U.S. military supporting base structure. They can use the finest intelligence system in the world, and most importantly they have been able to operate under the canopy of an assumed, ever-present enemy called “Communism.” It will be interesting to see what “enemy” develops in the years ahead. It appears that “UFO’s and Aliens” are being primed to fulfill that role for the future. To top all of this, there is the fact that the CIA, itself, has assumed the right to generate and direct secret operations.

Fletcher Prouty, Alexandria, VA, 1997

(ETK note: Obviously “terrorism” is the new “enemy” that emerged after the fall of Soviet “communism.” Hence, “anti-terrorism,” aka the “War on Terrorism” and “counter-terrorism,” has replaced “anti-communism” as the principal justification for the Secret Team’s covert activities in America and throughout the world.)

Excerpts From “The Secret Team: The CIA and Its Allies in Control of the United States and the World”

Chapter 1: The “Secret Team”- The Real Power Structure (i.e., the “invisible government”)

The most remarkable development in the management of America’s relations with other countries during the quarter-century since the end of World War II has been the assumption of more and more control over military, financial, and diplomatic operations at home and abroad by men whose activities are secret, whose budget is secret, whose very identities as often as not are secret- in short, by a Secret Team whose actions only those implicated in them are in a position to monitor and to understand.

For the purposes of this historical study, the choice of the word “Team” is most significant. It is well known that the members of a team, as in baseball or football, are skilled professionals under the direct control of someone higher up. They do not create their own game plan. They work for their coach and their owner. There is always some group that manages them and “calls the plays.” Team members are like lawyers and agents, they work for someone. They generally do not plan their own work. They do what their client tells them to do. … Thus, the members of the highest level ”Secret Team” work for their masters despite the fact that their own higher office may make it appear to others that they, themselves are not only the Team but the Power Elite.

…. The power of the Team derives from its vast intragovernmental undercover infrastructure and its direct relationship with great private industries, mutual funds and investment houses, universities, and the news media, including foreign and domestic publishing houses. The Secret Team has very close affiliations with elements of power in more than three-score foreign countries and is able when it chooses to topple governments, to create governments, and influence governments almost anywhere in the world….

In many ways and by many criteria the Secret Team is the inner sanctum of a new religious order.

At the heart of the Team, of course, area handful of top executives of the CIA and of the National Security Council (NSC), most notably the chief White House adviser to the President on foreign policy affairs. Around them revolves a sort of inner ring of Presidential officials, civilians, and military men from the Pentagon, and career professionals of the intelligence community. Out beyond this ring is an extensive and intricate network of government officials with responsibility for, or expertise in, some specific field that touches on national security or foreign affairs: “Think Tank “ analysts, businessmen who travel a lot or whose businesses (e.g., import-export or cargo airline operations) are useful, academic experts in this or that technical subject or geographic region, and quite importantly, alumni of the intelligence community- a service from which there are no unconditional resignations.

…. In the August 7, 1971 issue of The New Republic, the Asian scholar Eugene G. Windchy says, “What steered the nation into Vietnam was a series of tiny but powerful cabals.” What he calls a sense of tiny but powerful conspiracies, this puts all together as the actions of the Secret Team. That most valuable book by David Wise and Thomas B. Ross calls this power source “The Invisible Government”…. And “Secret Elite.”

… From 1945 through the crucial years of 1954 and 1955 and on to 1964, almost everything that was done in South Vietnam, including even a strong role in the selection of generals and ambassadors, was the action of the DCIA, with the DOD playing a supporting role and the Department of State almost in total eclipse.

… It was the CIA that created Diem’s first elite bodyguard to keep him alive in those early and precarious days. It was the CIA that created the Special Forces of Vietnamese troops, which were under the tight control of Ngo Dinh Nhu, and it was the CIA that created and directed the tens of thousands of paramilitary forces of all kinds in South Vietnam during those difficult years of the Diem regime. Not until the U.S. Marines landed in South Vietnam, in the van of the escalation in 1964, did an element of American troops arrive in Vietnam that were not under the operational control of the CIA.

…. Although Allen Dulles does not say it in his book (“The Craft of Intelligence”), his concept of Intelligence is about 10 percent real Intelligence and 90 percent clandestine operations. In other words, he would have us busy all around the world all of the time countering “all aspects of the invisible war.” By this he means intervening in the internal affairs of other nations with or without their knowledge and permission…. It is what the United States has been doing in an increasing crescendo of events, beginning with such actions as the involvement in Berlin and Iran in the1940s and culminating in the terrible disaster of Vietnam that began as a major intelligence operation, went on into the clandestine operations stage, then got out of hand and had to become an overt activity during the Johnson era.

President Truman planned for the CIA to be the “quiet intelligence arm of the President.” He and those of his Administration never intended that it become an autonomous operational agency in the clandestine field.

… (General) Maxwell Taylor… had become a leader of the new military force of response, of reaction and of undercover activity- all summed up in the newly coined word “counterinsurgency.” … Taylor’s tenure would mark the end of the day of the old soldier and the beginning of the Special Forces, the peacetime operator, the response-motivated counterinsurgency warrior who has been so abundantly uncovered in the conflict of the past ten years in Vietnam.

This was the climax of a long bit of maneuvering within the Government by the ST (Secret Team) and its supporters.

…. Clandestine warfare is never honorable and must always be denied…. The more intimate one becomes with this activity, the more one begins to realize that such operations are rarely, if ever, initiated from an intent to become involved in pursuit of some national objective in the first place. It would be hard to find an example of a clandestine operation that had been developed from the beginning solely in support of some significant national objective.

The lure of “fun and games” is addictive, and it is most powerful.

…. It goes without saying that the atomic weapons system totally obsoleted most of the concept of World War II. There may never have been a time in all of the evolution of warfare when the introduction of one weapon had so suddenly and so totally overwhelmed all other weapons and all other tactics and strategy. World War II was the major war of all time, and the weapons systems and the tactics and strategy employed by the U.S. military forces during this war were the supreme high water mark of battle effectiveness…. The remarkable thing is that even before that great war ended, a new weapon that completely changed the whole concept of warfare with one great big bang came into being.

This change was so dynamic that even though the United States and its allies were victors by virtue of the unconditional surrender of all the vanquished, and thus were total masters of the field, they could not rest upon their laurels once another country had unlocked the secret of nuclear weapons systems. The great fact in this realization was that there could be no peacetime relaxation and no resting upon the fruits of victory; secure in the knowledge that we ere masters of the world.

… It was generally accepted that World War III would be a nuclear war, that it would be a brief war during the nuclear exchange period, and that it would be followed by a long, protracted, and very complex post-strike campaign in which the least devastated nation would try to mount forces sufficient to occupy the territory of most of the damaged nation and to bring about some order in what would most certainly be a totally devastated area.

… Such plans required that certain areas of any potentially hostile country must be left untouched by atomic warfare in order that radioactivity from direct hits and from the much more unpredictable fallout patterns would not become a retarding factor.

…. These war-planning military and pseudo-military agents worked on the post-strike part of the war plan, and more specifically, on that part which pertained to the development of safe areas, agents and agent lines, and other CAMC-type matters. At that phase in the development of the war-planning philosophy and strategy, this was a new role for the military and one they willingly turned over to these hard-working men who seemed so dedicated to the task. Their offices were usually identified by such titles as Subsidiary Plans, Special Plans, or even the more normal Psychological Warfare and Unconventional Warfare designations.

(ETK note: Is Crestone/Baca, Colorado, this kind of “safe area” and platform for “psychological and unconventional warfare?”)

… As this nation turned to a broad though quiet and generally covert campaign of worldwide anti-communism, it pressed its military forces, economic forces, and its intelligence arm upon this group of more than forty countries. At the same time, it turned from the real Communist states such as Poland and China. Thus the struggle took place in remote areas of the rim-land along the traces of the Iron Curtain. The struggle was hidden from the view of most Americans and from those countries where there was no activity at that time; but not from the countries that were active, such as the Philippines, Thailand, Pakistan, or Iran- and certainly these actions were not hidden from the awareness of the Soviet Union.

… Thus, in those crucial ten years, the clandestine activities of the CIA were redirected from those originally aimed at the Soviet Union and its neighboring states to the many nations of our friends, in which we saw the “rampant,” dangerous forces of “subversive insurgency.” And today they have been even further directed, along with other powerful arms of secret power, to seek the sources of subversive insurgency within this country itself. All during this refocusing of direction, the ST has increased its utilization of secrecy in order to keep the host nation from knowing what was going on. Throughout this complex series of operations the Agency went out of its way to keep this information from the Congress and from the people of the United States.

Two wise men, much experienced in the terrible pressures of government, Harry S Truman and William O. Douglas, came up with similar conclusions, one after Kennedy’s searing lesson at the Bay of Pigs and other after his tragic death in Dallas. Both of them saw sinister intrigue and the extreme power of these two groups, the CIA and the Pentagon. Both saw the various insidious influences of the CIA and the Pentagon, and both wondered as Douglas asked, “Can any President ever be strong enough to really rule?”

… Like a haunting, terrorizing nightmare, the sinister machine pervades every aspect of the government today- and affects all of us, our way of life, and the welfare of the entire world…. It would be wrong to grant this cybernetic, automatic-control machine more wisdom, more power, more sense than it it really possesses. The worst possible mistake would be to overestimate it. It is not just one finite team of individuals. It is a matrix that changes with the gestation of each new operation…. What exists is like a giant electronic date processing machine, on the model of Ross Ashby’s idea, which has its own power to grow, to reproduce, and to become more insidiously effective and efficient as it operates.

… This great machine has been constructed by such able men as Wild Bill” Donovan, Clark Clifford, Walter Beedle Smith, Allen Dulles, Maxwell Taylor, McGeorge Bundy, and many others, who have guided and molded it into the runaway giant that it is today. It is big business, big government, big money, big pressure, and headless- all operating in self-centered, utterly self-serving security and secrecy.

For all its fabrication and apparent unreality, especially in this open society, the ST machine does have a central soul or brain…. Or perhaps…. Holy spirit. It is the evidence of a form of new religion. It has its secrets. It has its divine and unquestioned rights and obligations. It has self-righteous power over life and death. It does not believe in anything. It does not value anything. It is utterly ruthless. Its greatest motivating force and drive is entirely undefined, because it moves by pressure. It reacts. It is therefore blind, meaningless, senseless. It will do anything in the name of anti-Communism. Yet in its greatest anti-Communist war (ETK: Vietam) it sees no inconsistency in the killing of one its most anti-Communist creations- Ngo Dinh Diem. In its zeal to rid the Caribbean of communism, it leaps at the chance to rid the Dominican Republic of Latin America’s strongest non-Communist, Rafael Trujillo. Any person or groups that know how to get to this infrastructure, who have the clearances, who have the need-to-know, can make an input into this ST, and as long as the desired action is anti-Communist, the system will operate.

As Kennedy saw, as Johnson may have seen, as Nixon’s “nightmare” may suggest, there is but one way to control this massive ST structure. It must be uncovered. It must be made known. It must be exposed to the light. And then it must be told No. To be effective, this means that Congress must cut its money off, not only at the central source, but at all the hidden nerve centers.

Before it is too late, we Americans must realize that this great cancer exists. We must expose it for pro-American reasons; not as a work of anti-Communism. We have been subjected to so many anti-American and pro-Communist notions all in the name of anti-Communism, that words and facts almost elude us.

…. Thus this ST must be exposed, bared, and silenced. Then a new and better way of life must be created. We must end the exploitation of secret intelligence by clandestine operations….. The CIA should be limited to the function of intelligence- and not a bit more.

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