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[CTRL] NSA Charter from Wiretap

From: "Shane A. Saylor, Eccentric Bard" <[email protected]>
Subject: [CTRL] NSA Charter from Wiretap
Date: Tue, 15 Dec 1998 21:41:47 -0500
To: [email protected]

 -Caveat Lector-

From: [email protected] (TELECOM Moderator)
Newsgroups: comp.dcom.telecom
Subject: FOIA Jewel: Original Charter of the National Security Agency
Message-ID: <[email protected]>
Date: 11 Feb 90 18:15:00 GMT
Organization: TELECOM Digest
Lines: 322
X-Telecom-Digest: Special Edition: Birth of NSA

{{ This is a special edition of TELECOM Digest sent to the mailing  }}
{{ list this date. Although not strictly telecom-related, I thought }}
{{ Usenet comp.dcom.telecom readers would enjoy seeing it.   PT     }}

TELECOM Digest     Sun, 11 Feb 90 11:35:18 CST    Special: Birth of NSA

Today's Topics:                             Moderator: Patrick Townson

    FOIA Jewel: Original Charter of the National Security Agency

Date: Sun, 11 Feb 90 00:03 EST
From: [email protected]
Subject: FOIA Jewel: Original Charter of the National Security Agency

    At  12:01 ON the  morning of November 4,  1952, a new federal
agency was born.  Unlike other such bureaucratic births, however,
this one arrived in silence.   No news coverage, no congressional
debate, no press announcement,  not even the whisper of  a rumor.
Nor could any  mention of  the new organization  be found in  the
Government Organization  Manual of  the Federal  Register or  the
Congressional Record.   Equally invisible  were the new  agency's
director, its numerous buildings, and its ten thousand employees.

    Eleven days earlier,  on October 24, President Harry S Truman
scratched  his   signature  on   the  bottom   of  a   seven-page
presidential memorandum addressed  to secretary of State  Dean G.
Acheson  and Secretary of  Defense Robert A.  Lovett.  Classified
top  secret  and  stamped  with  a  code  word  that  was  itself
classified, the  order directed the establishment of an agency to
be  known as  the National  Security Agency.    It was  the birth
certificate  for  America's  newest and  most  secret  agency, so
secret in  fact that only  a handful  in the government  would be
permitted to know of its existence.

    -James Bamford, The Puzzle Palace (1982) at 15.


                                        A 20707 5/4/54/OSO
                                        NSA TS CONTL. NO 73-00405
                                        COPY: D321

                                        Oct 24 1952

MEMORANDUM FOR:     The Secretary of State
                    The Secretary of Defense

SUBJECT:  Communications Intelligence Activities

    The  communications intelligence  (COMINT) activities  of the
United States are  a national  responsibility.  They  must be  so
organized and managed as to exploit  to the maximum the available
resources in all  participating departments  and agencies and  to
satisfy  the legitimate  intelligence  requirements  of all  such
departments and agencies.

    I  therefore designate  the Secretaries of  State and Defense
as  a Special  Committee  of the  National  Security Council  for
COMINT,  which  Committee  shall,  with  the  assistance  of  the
Director of  Central Intelligence,  establish policies  governing
COMINT  activities. and keep me advised  of such policies through
the Executive Secretary of the National Security Council.

    I  further designate  the Department of  Defense as executive
agent  of   the  Government,   for  the   production  of   COMINT

    I  direct  this  Special  Committee  to  prepare   and  issue
directives which shall include the provisions set forth below and
such other provisions  as the Special Committee  may determine to
be necessary.

    1.    A   directive  to   the  United   States  Communication
Intelligence  Board  (USCIB).  This  directive will  replace the
National Security Council Intelligence Directive No. 9, and shall
prescribe   USCIB's   new   composition,   responsibilities   and
procedures in the  COMINT fields.   This directive shall  include
the following provisions.

a. USCIB  shall be reconstituted  as a body  acting for
    and  under  the  Special  Committee,  and  shall  operate  in
    accordance with the  provisions of  the new directive.   Only
    those  departments  or  agencies  represented  in  USCIB  are
    authorized to engage in COMINT activities.

b.  The  Board  shall  be  composed  of  the  following
     (1) The  Director  of  Central Intelligence,  who shall be
         the Chairman of the Board.
     (2) A representative of the Secretary of State.
     (3) A representative of the Secretary of Defense
     (4) A representative of the Director of the Federal
         Bureau of Investigation.
     (5) The Director of the National Security Agency.
     (6) A representative of the Department of the Army.
     (7) A representative of the Department of the Navy.
     (8) A representative of the Department of the Air Force.
     (9) A representative of the Central Intelligence Agency.

c. The Board shall have a  staff headed by an executive
    secretary who  shall be  appointed by the  Chairman with  the
    approval of the majority of the Board.

d. It shall be the duty of the Board to advise and make
    recommendations to the  Secretary of  Defense, in  accordance
    with  the  following procedure,  with respect  to  any matter
    relating  to communications  intelligence which  falls within
    the jurisdiction of the Director of the NSA.
     (1) The Board shall reach its decision by majority
     vote.  Each  member of  the Board shall  have one  vote
     except the  representatives of  the Secretary  of State
     and of the  Central Intelligence Agency who  shall each
     have two votes.  The  Director of Central Intelligence,
     as Chairman, will have no vote.  In the event  that the
     Board  votes  and reaches  a  decision,  any dissenting
     member  of  the  Board may  appeal  from  such decision
     within 7 days of  the Special Committee.  In  the event
     that the Board votes but fails to reach a decision, any
     member of the  Board may  appeal within 7  days to  the
     Special  Committee.    In   either  event  the  Special
     Committee   shall   review    the   matter,   and   its
     determination thereon shall  be final.  Appeals  by the
     Director  of NSA  and/or  the  representatives  of  the
     Military  Departments  shall  only  be  filed with  the
     approval of the Secretary of Defense.
     (2) If any matter is voted on by the Board but -
      (a)  no decision  is reached  and any  member
      files an appeal;
      (b)  a  decision  is  reached  in  which  the
      representative  of the  Secretary of  Defense does
      not concur and files an appeal;
     no action  shall be taken  with respect to  the subject
     matter until the  appeal is decided, provided  that, if
     the Secretary of Defense determines, after consultation
     with the Secretary  of State,  that the subject  matter
     presents a problem of an  emergency nature and requires
     immediate action,  his decision  shall govern,  pending
     the  result  of  the  appeal.   In  such  an  emergency
     situation  the  appeal  may be  taken  directly  to the
     (3)  Recommendations  of  the  Board  adopted   in
     accordance  with  the  foregoing  procedures  shall  be
     binding on the Secretary of Defense.   Except on matter
     which have been voted on by  the Board, the Director of
     NSA shall discharge  his responsibilities in accordance
     with his own  judgment, subject to the direction of the
     Secretary of Defense.
     (4) The Director  of NSA  shall make such  reports
     and furnish  such information from time to  time to the
     Board,  either orally  or in  writing, as the  Board my
     request, and shall bring to  the attention of the Board
     either in such reports or  otherwise any major policies
     or programs in advance of their adoption by him.
e. It  shall  also be  the duty  of  the Board  as to
    matters not falling within the jurisdiction of NSA;
    (1) To coordinate the  communications intelligence
    activities   among   all   departments   and   agencies
    authorized by the President to participate therein;
    (2) To initiate, to formulate policies concerning,
    and  subject  to  the  provision of  NSCID  No.  5,  to
    supervise all arrangements with  foreign governments in
    the field of communications intelligence; and
    (3)   to   consider   and   make   recommendations
    concerning   policies   relating    to   communications
    intelligence of common interest  to the departments and
    agencies, including security  standards and  practices,
    and, for  this purpose,  to investigate  and study  the
    standards  and   practices  of  such   departments  and
    agencies   in   utilizing    and   protecting    COMINT
f. Any recommendation of the Board with respect  to the
    matters  described in paragraph e above shall  be binding on
    all  departments  or  agencies of  the  Government  if  it is
    adopted  by the  unanimous vote of the  members of the Board.
    Recommendations  approved by  the majority,  but not  all, of
    the  members of the Board  shall be transmitted by  it to the
    Special  Committee for  such action as  the Special Committee
    may see fit to take.
g. The Board will meet monthly,  or oftener at the call
    of  the Chairman  or any member, and  shall determine its own

    2. A directive to  the Secretary of Defense.   This
    directive shall include the following provisions:

a. Subject   to  the  specific   provisions  of   this
    directive, the Secretary of  Defense may delegate in whole of
    in  part  authority  over the  Director  of  NSA  within  his
    department as he sees fit.

b. The COMINT  mission of the National  Security Agency
    (NSA) shall be to provide an effective,  unified organization
    and control of the communications  intelligence activities of
    the United States  conducted against foreign  governments, to
    provide for  integrated operational  policies and  procedures
    pertaining thereto.   As  used in  this directive,  the terms
    "communications intelligence"  or "COMINT" shall be construed
    to mean all  procedures and methods used in  the interception
    of communications  other  than foreign  press and  propaganda
    broadcasts  and  the  obtaining  of   information  from  such
    communications by other  than intended recipients,  but shall
    exclude censorship  and the  production and dissemination  of
    finished intelligence.

c. NSA shall be administered  by a Director, designated
    by  the  Secretary of  Defense  after  consultation with  the
    Joint Chiefs of Staff, who shall serve for a  minimum term of
    4  years and  who shall be  eligible for  reappointment.  The
    Director shall be a career commissioned officer of  the armed
    services  on active or reactivated status, and shall enjoy at
    least 3-star rank during the period of his incumbency.

d. Under the  Secretary of  Defense, and in  accordance
    with approved  policies of USCIB,  the Director of NSA  shall
    be responsible  for accomplishing  the mission  of NSA.   For
    this purpose all  COMINT collection and production  resources
    of  the United States  are placed  under his  operational and
    technical  control.    When  action  by  the  Chiefs  of  the
    operating  agencies of the  Services or  civilian departments
    or  agencies is  required, the Director  shall normally issue
    instruction  pertaining to  COMINT operations  through  them.
    However,  due  to the  unique technical  character  of COMINT
    operations,  the Director  is authorized  to issue  direct to
    any  operating elements  under  his operational  control task
    assignments and pertinent  instructions which are within  the
    capacity of such elements to accomplish.  He  shall also have
    direct   access  to,  and   direct  communication  with,  any
    elements  of the  Service or civilian  COMINT agencies on any
    other  matters of operational and technical control as may be
    necessary,  and he  is authorized to  obtain such information
    and intelligence material from  them as he may require.   All
    instruction  issued  by  the  Director  under  the  authority
    provided in this paragraph  shall be mandatory, subject  only
    to  appeal  to  the Secretary  of  Defense  by the  Chief  of
    Service or head of civilian department of agency concerned.
e. Specific  responsibilities  of the  Director of  NSA
    include the following:
     (1)  Formulating  necessary operational  plans and
     policies for the conduct of the U.S. COMINT activities.
     (2)   Conducting   COMINT   activities,  including
     research and development, as required to meet the needs
     of the  departments and agencies  which  are authorized
     to receive the products of COMINT.
     (3)  Determining,  and  submitting to  appropriate
     authorities, requirements for  logistic support for the
     conduct of  COMINT activities,  together with  specific
     recommendations  as  to  what each  of  the responsible
     departments  and  agencies  of  the  Government  should
     (4) Within  NSA's field  of authorized  operations
     prescribing  requisite  security  regulations  covering
     operating   practices,   including   the  transmission,
     handling and distribution of COMINT material within and
     among  the COMINT  elements  under  his  operations  or
     technical   control;   and  exercising   the  necessary
     monitoring   and    supervisory   control,    including
     inspections if necessary, to ensure compliance with the
     (5)  Subject   to  the  authorities   granted  the
     Director  Central  Intelligence   under  NSCID  No.  5,
     conducting all liaison on  COMINT matters with  foreign
     governmental communications intelligence agencies.
f. To  the extent he  deems feasible and  in consonance
    with  the aims  of maximum over-all  efficiency, economy, and
    effectiveness, the Director  shall centralize  or consolidate
    the  performance  of  COMINT   functions  for  which  he   is
    responsible.  It is recognized that in  certain circumstances
    elements of the Armed Forces and other  agencies being served
    will require close COMINT support.  Where necessary for  this
    close  support,  direct  operational  control  of   specified
    COMINT  facilities  and resources  will be  delegated  by the
    Director,  during such  periods  and for  such tasks  as  are
    determined  by him,  to military commanders  or to the Chiefs
    of other agencies supported.
g. The  Director  shall exercise  such  administrative
    control  over COMINT activities as he  deems necessary to the
    effective   performance   of   his   mission.      Otherwise,
    administrative  control  of  personnel  and  facilities  will
    remain with the departments and agencies providing them.
h. The Director shall make provision for participation
    by  representatives of  each of the  departments and agencies
    eligible to receive COMINT  products in those offices of  NSA
    where  priorities  of  intercept and  processing  are finally
i. The  Director shall  have  a civilian  deputy whose
    primary responsibility  shall be  to ensure the  mobilization
    and  effective  employment of  the best  available  human and
    scientific  resources in the  field of cryptographic research
    and development.
j. Nothing  in  this  directive  shall contravene  the
    responsibilities  of the  individual departments and agencies
    for  the  final   evaluation  of   COMINT  information,   its
    synthesis  with  information  from  other  sources,  and  the
    dissemination of finished intelligence to users.

    3. The  special nature of  COMINT actives requires that  they
    be treated  in all  respects as  being outside  the framework  of
    other  or general  intelligence  activities.   Order, directives,
    policies, or recommendations  of any  authority of the  Executive
    Branch   relating  to   the  collection,   production,  security,
    handling, dissemination, or  utilization of intelligence,  and/or
    classified material, shall  not be applicable to  COMINT actives,
    unless  specifically   so   stated  and   issued   by   competent
    departmental of agency authority represented on the Board.  Other
    National Security Council Intelligence Directive to the  Director
    of  Central  Intelligence  and  related  implementing  directives
    issued by the Director of Central Intelligence shall be construed
    as  non-applicable  to  COMINT  activities, unless  the  National
    Security Council has made  its directive specifically  applicable
    to COMINT.



End of TELECOM Digest Special: Birth of NSA

A person is like a religion; one face, many aspects
      --Shane A. Saylor, Eccentric Bard ICQ: 9815080
 Operator Taliesin_2 of #SacredNemeton on IRC DALnet

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