Kristian Gustafson – Nixon, Kissinger, the CIA, and Chile

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Event Date: 29 April – 1 May 2011
East Midlands Conference Centre
University of Nottingham  
University Park
Nottingham NG7 2RJ



Landscapes of Secrecy: The CIA in History, Fiction and Memory


Dr Christian Gustafson (Brunel University) – Nixon, Kissinger, the CIA, and Chile

The Nixon presidency remains one of the most controversial in US history. In terms of the secret world, an important factor in this controversy is the relationship between the Agency, the president, and his consigliere, Kissinger. Nixon held strong credentials in foreign policy and Kissinger was viewed as a prestigious academic theorist. What use was the CIA in providing political analysis to two foreign policy geniuses? Its use was to be, as Chile shows, as an executive agent of the duo’s world vision, a covert-action tool to force into reality what the pair held as an ideal. In using the CIA as a blunt instrument, the pair unwittingly provided theorists with the best evidence on the fungibility of secret state power, on the relationship between intelligence and action, and on the utility of coherent procedures linking the secret and overt streams of national strategy.

Kristian Gustafson is director of studies at Brunel Universities successful MA in Intelligence and Security Studies. His book on Chile, Hostile Intent (2007) was called a “provocative contribution” by Foreign Affairs and a “landmark” text by David Robarge in Studies. He writes on covert action (currently with funding from the British Academy), horizon scanning, and was involved in the drafting of the MOD’s new joint intelligence doctrine.

Contact details: Centre for Intelligence and Security Studies,Brunel University, Kingston Lane, Uxbridge, Middlesex UB8 3PH. UK

Email: Kristian.Gustafson@brunel.ac.uk

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