The magazine Hated, yet respected by the CIA and just hated
by the Bush Crime Family
Ed. Note: During my Cold War days in US intelligence in Europe, we had a full set of a continually growing archive of CAQ within our SCIF library alongside Jane's Defence and other notable publications we were to be aware of and use as source material, as well as to see who knew what or if someone was hot on the trail or uncovering an operation - the Perpetrators of State Crime, with whom I worked, loved to hate CAQ...
I find it comically ironic as an intelligence veteran to fight against the same apparatus now, pissing into their "eyes only" punchbowl of compartmentalized kool-aid drinking cubicle dwellers espousing "if you only knew what I knew...", but from the other side of the fence and to have the privilege of having Lou as a friend in the same fight.
From 1978 to 2005 one of the leading progressive print (Remember that word?) magazines in the world, dealing primarily with US foreign policy, the CIA/NSA/FBI, repression at home and abroad, and corporate crime.
The magazine, initially called CovertAction Information Bulletin, regularly published the names and career histories around the globe of undercover CIA officers derived from careful research of open, public sources. This so infuriated the powers-that-be that Congress passed the Intelligence Identities Protection Act in 1982, which made the practice of revealing the name of an undercover officer illegal under US law. The law was a virtual bill of attainder -- it is unconstitutional for Congress to enact legislation directed at a specific individual or organization. At the time, members of the House Intelligence Committee were telling journalists and lawyers that the legislation was only aimed at CovertAction Information Bulletin and its editors, but this was always said off the record and no one would confirm it on the record. (Congressman Bill Young (R.-FL) said during a House debate that "What we're after today are the Philip Agees of the world.") (Wikipedia, under “Intelligence Identities Protection Act”) Ironically, the law became the basis for the prosecution of George W. Bush special counsel Lewis ‘Scooter’ Libby, who outed CIA employee Valerie Plame.
Amongst the magazine’s numerous contributors were Philip Agee, John Stockwell, Ralph McGehee, Ellen Ray, William Schaap, Louis Wolf, Michael Parenti, Noam Chomsky, Mumia Abu-Jamal, Leonard Peltier, Diana Johnstone, Sean Gervasi, Philip Wheaton, Immanuel Wallerstein, Kathy Kelly, Tony Benn, Ramsey Clark, David MacMichael, Edward Herman, William Blum, Michel Chossudovsky, Marjorie Cohn, James Petras, Gregory Elich, and many other prominent progressive writers.
A recent Washington Post story states:
“The private papers of Philip Agee, the disaffected CIA operative whose unauthorized publication of agency secrets 35 years ago was arguably far more damaging than anything WikiLeaks has produced, have been obtained by New York University, which plans to make them public next spring.” (Washington Post online, October 26, 2010, story by Jeff Stein)
Individual copies or the entire set of 78 issues (mostly original copies and about a dozen in quality photocopy format) are available for purchase: $3.00 per issue, 25 copies for $65.00, 50 for $115, or $165.00 for all 78, including postage in the United States. To place an order, write: Louis Wolf, PO Box 5541, Washington, DC 20016, or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Email from a reader:
Covert Action Quarterly was the best left-wing magazine I've ever read. For years I sought it out at the news stand, often checking multiple times trying not to miss an issue. (I can't remember why I didn't subscribe to it. Maybe I did at one time.) For more than a decade I've gone back to their sadly pathetic website, and only on the last visit did I find any material worth reading. CAQ, in my opinion, beat the pants off The Nation -- even when it was still worth reading. It beat the pants off of the early Mother Jones, back when it was actually radical. It beat the pants off of Z Magazine, even in Z's heyday. It even beat the pants off the print version of CounterPunch. I can't think of a single other magazine that so impressed me.
I told dozens of people about it and gave copies away.
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