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Mr. WARNER. Mr. President, the Clinton administration has indicated that it intends to nominate for Assistant Secretary of Defense, Morton Halperin. He is currently working at the Department of Defense as a consultant. The position Mr. Halperin will reportedly be nominated for is a new position in the Office of the Secretary of Defense which I understand has been designated as the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Democratization and Peacekeeping.

Mr. President, I am extremely concerned about some of the allegations that have been made against Mr. Halperin and some of the statements that have been attributed to him.

The purpose of my remarks today is to give notice that, as a senior member of the Armed Services Committee, I will intensely examine Mr. Halperin's complete record in the course of the Senate's consideration of this nomination.

Mr. President, I want to make it clear that I do not intend to prejudge any nominee of this or future administrations. However, the allegations that have already emerged on Mr. Halperin cause me great concern.

Mr. President, I ask consent to submit for the Record an editorial entitled `Who is Mort Halperin' which appeared in the Washington Times on June 28, 1993, and an article which appeared in the July 16, 1993, edition of the New York Post concerning Mr. Halperin and entitled `More Shocking Than Guinier.' In addition, I ask consent to include in the Record a summary of some of Mr. Halperin's most controversial writings on national security matters during the last 25 years, which was compelled by the Center for Security Policy. The director of the center, Frank Gaffney, Jr. submitted this summary of writings to President Clinton on August 2, 1993.

I believe the President and the Secretary of Defense should carefully reconsider the advisability of making this nomination and how Mr. Halperin's record would compare with the high standards established thus far by the outstanding group of Presidential appointees now serving in the Department of Defense.

From the Washington Times, June 28, 1993


He is a former Nixon administration official who had his phone tapped by the FBI because he was suspected of leaking information to the press about the secret U.S. bombing of Cambodia in 1969. He is a former American Civil Liberties Union lawyer who defended the right of the ultraradical Progressive magazine in 1979 to publish a recipe for the hydrogen bomb; who aided and abetted ex-CIA agent Philip Agee in his campaign during the '70s to expose the identities of CIA agents overseas, which is believed to have resulted in the murder of the CIA's Athens station chief; who unabashedly avowed, in print and in congressional testimony, his opposition to any and all covert intelligence operations; who, just before the Persian Gulf war, urged federal employees to come forward with any information indicating the Bush administration was withholding the full truth about its action in the Gulf. He is a former member of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace who believes the United States should never intervene militarily anywhere without an invitation from the United Nations.

Morton Halperin is also President Clinton's choice to fill the Defense Department position--a position created just for him--of assistant defense secretary for democratization and peacekeeping.

Some illuminating quotations from his writings:

`Surely, at this point in time it is not necessary to remind ourselves of the certainty that the techniques that we apply to others will inevitably be turned on the American people by our own intelligence services. Whether that extends to assassination has sadly become an open question but little else.'

`Groups and individuals concerned about preventing nuclear war must recognize that the fight to prevent greater secrecy and to restrain the threat of draconian measures against public debate in a nuclear crisis is their battle. Only an informed public free to engage in open debates and armed with adequate information, can keep the Administration from pursuing dangerous policies.'

`It is time for Congress to draw the line and abolish covert operations.'

`Wars, which are conducted in the name of protecting the liberty of Americans, have always resulted in limitations on the freedoms Americans properly cherished.'

`The United States should explicitly surrender the right to intervene unilaterally in the internal affairs of other countries by overt military means or by covert operations.'

Mr. Halperin's appointment is by no means a done deal. His nomination has not been formally forwarded to the Senate, and there is every indication that if it is, it will be subjected to the most intense scrutiny. Sen. John McCain, ranking Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, who was himself languishing in a Vietnamese prisoner-of-war camp even as Mr. Halperin was formulating his radical views on military intervention and covert operations, is, he says, `very concerned about the nominee's writings and statement.' Mr. Halperin may well turn out to be the next Lani Guinier. In the meantime, he is ensconced in the Pentagon, working as a `consultant' to the Department of Defense.

As for the man who put him there, Bill Clinton's actions over the past 25 years have done little to inspire confidence in him as commander in chief of the armed services. From his very vocal opposition to the Vietnam War from the safe haven of Oxford, England, to his very first act as commander in chief to attempt to lift the ban on homosexuals in the services, his record is one that raises serious doubts.

Whether the president has learned a lesson from the resistance that has met his effort to lift the ban on homosexuals, however, remains to be seen.

Going forward with the nomination of Morton Halperin, an avowed enemy of military intervention, intelligence operations and nuclear weapons--the very things that have safeguarded democracy and kept the peace for the past 50 years--would surely send another message of contempt for the military and its mission.

Withdrawing that nomination would be a step toward reassuring the nation of Mr. Clinton's willingness to act responsibly as commander in chief.



From the New York Post, July 16, 1993


President Clinton has produced his share of ideologically controversial nominees--from Lani Guinier to Sheldon Hackney. But Morton Halperin, Clinton's prospective assistant secretary of defense for democracy and peacekeeping (a newly created post), plainly tops the list.

Halperin, to be sure, hasn't yet formally been nominated. And the Washington based weekly Human Events reports that a number of GOP senators--including Trent Lott (R-Miss.) * * * P.O.W. John McCain (R-Ariz.), mean to fight the Halperin appointment.

Indeed, the president himself is said to be having second thoughts about Halperin. But with Defense Secretary Les Aspin urging Clinton to stand by his man, there's still every reason to expect that the president will press forward with the nomination, provoking a bruising confirmation battle on Capitol Hill.

The impending battle is altogether appropriate--naming Halperin to a national security post is as bizarre as anything this administration's done in the appointments sphere.

Hackney, after all, will likely survive the confirmation process--despite his embrace of a Politically Correct campus `speech code' at the University of Pennsylvania; in the end, it's hard to get anyone excited about the chairmanship of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Hackney's transparent confirmation conversion--he proved willing to denounce both speech codes and Political Correctness in order to get the job--didn't fool anyone who'd actually
followed his misguided tenure as Penn's president. Still, no one much cares about the emergence of yet another guilty, white Southern `progressive' in a comparatively insignificant job.

Guinier, of course, failed to make the cut because her written euvre left her too vulnerable to charges that she's a racial reductionist who favors quotas and questions the very principle of `one man, one vote.' Clinton was wise to withdraw her name, not just for the country's sake, but simply because she wouldn't have been confirmed as assistant attorney general for civil rights.

Morton Halperin, however, is an even more insidious proposition. A National Security Council aide who became a virulent foe of American policy in Vietnam, Halperin left government in 1989 and made a quasi-profession out of suing Nixon administration officials for wiretapping his telephone. In his spare time, he devoted himself to fighting America's ostensibly evil national security apparatus.

Halperin ran a hard-left outfit called the Center for National Security Studies which dedicated itself--by its own account--ensuring that U.S. intelligence agencies operated within the framework of the Constitution.

Subsequently, he headed the Washington office of the American Civil Liberties Union, where he turned his new employer's energies and resources toward a series of left-wing causes.

The CIA was a particular Halperin target. He demanded the elimination of the agency's covert operations division, called the CIA `the subverter of everyone else's democracy' and defended a pro-communist ex-CIA agent, Philip Agee, after Agee drew national notoriety for publishing the names of active-duty CIA officers, thereby endangering their lives. While Halperin's ostensible purpose was to defend
Agee's constitutional right to free speech, it became difficult to discern ideological differences between the ACLU activist and his pro-Castro client.

Halperin has also devoted himself to attacking the FBI. In 1976, he charged the bureau with `murdering' Black Panther Fred Hampton. The following year, Halperin--together with the National Lawyers Guild, a longtime Communist Party front, and various other radical-left groups--helped form a legal resources center to combat `police spying.'

Actually, Halperin scarcely believes in the government's right to keep any secrets at all. He favors full public disclosure by both the CIA and the FBI of all budgetary allocations; of weapons research, and of ties to academic institutions.

Halperin, moreover, opposes virtually all FBI efforts to gather domestic intelligence--even including legal, court-ordered wiretapping. It would be interesting to know how he thinks the bureau should deal with the threat posed by Islamic fundamentalist terror cells (assuming, of course, that he recognizes the existence of such a threat).

Needless to say, all of this makes Halperin a decidedly unusual candidate for a high-level Pentagon post--one which carries with it a first-echelon security clearance. At the Defense Department, Halperin would have access to highly classified information--information he believes should be in the public domain.

Perhaps that best summary of Morton Halperin's worldview is one he himself provided. A 1977 book he co-authored is entitled: `The Lawless State: The Crimes of the U.S. Intelligence Agencies.'

Now Halperin is poised to go to work for the very state he's long deemed lawless--unless, of course, the senators on the Armed Services Committee decide that this time Clinton has gone too far.



The Center for Security Policy,
Washington, DC, August 2, 1993.

Hon. Bill Clinton,
President of the United States, The White House, Washington, DC.

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Dear Mr. President: Press reports indicate that you have decided personally to review some of Morton Halperin's more controversial writings before deciding whether to proceed with his nomination to the position of Assistant Secretary of Defense for Democracy and Human Rights. I commend you for this prudent step and am confident that it will spare your Administration unnecessary anguish and political costs.

The reason for this confidence is that my colleagues at the Center for Security Policy and I find it inconceivable that you would willingly associate yourself with the highly controversial views Mr. Halperin has held and publicly advocated for many years. These include positions on: national security policy, the U.S. intelligence community, American commitments to our allies, the classification of information, and the conduct of counter-terrorist activities, among many others--positions that can only be described as extreme.

Mr. Halperin's recorded policy attitudes are, in short, ones we believe you will not easily be able to defend, nor should you have to. In the hope that we might assist you in reaching a similar conclusion, we have prepared the attached compendium of a number of Mr. Halperin's writings for your review--and that of Members of the U.S. Senate who would have to consider his nomination should it to go forward.


Frank J. Gaffney, Jr.



The Case Against the Halperin Nomination: Selected Readings From Morton Halperin's Collected Works


On 31 March 1993, the White House announced that President Clinton intended to nominate Morton Halperin to a new position in the Department of Defense, apparently created expressly for him. This post--the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Democracy and Human Rights--would be at the cutting edge of many of the United States' most pressing national security problems; its occupant would be well situated to shape American policy in every region of the world.

Consequently, many in the national security community reacted to this appointment first with astonishment, then with horror. After all, Halperin had for decades been an assiduous and vociferous critic of security policy and institutions under both Democratic and Republican administrations. He had, in particular, made a career of denouncing U.S. intelligence--accusing it of systematic criminal and anti-constitutional behavior, encouraging moves to hamstring or dismantle its operations and defending those who deliberately exposed American agents operating undercover. In his new position, Halperin would have daily dealings with the intelligence community and access to many of its most sensitive secrets.

The Halperin appointment, in short, seemed to offer early confirmation of fears that President Clinton's campaign rhetoric about being a `New Democrat'--one who would be responsible and tough-minded about national security matters--would prove to be little more than that, empty rhetoric.

And yet, four months have now passed since the President stated his intention to nominate Halperin to this key Pentagon position and the nomination has still not been submitted to the Senate. While that step has been said to be imminent for several weeks, the trade publication Defense Daily recently reported that--in the wake of the fiasco over the written record of another nominee, Prof. Lani Guinier--Mr. Clinton had decided to review personally `some of [Halperin's] most controversial writings before forwarding his nomination to the Senate.'

The Center for Security Policy welcomes the President's decision to take a first-hand look at the Halperin record of advocacy of policies that are extremely hostile to U.S. defense and intelligence capabilities. Had they been adopted during the Cold War, these policies would have done incalculable harm to the national interest. Were they (or comparable prescriptions) to be adopted now--in what is, according to Mr. Clinton's own Director of Central Intelligence James Woolsey, in some ways an even more dangerous world--the consequences could be no less grave.

The following pages document these policy views in Mort Halperin's own words. While but a small sampling of his voluminous writings and public statements, the cited quotes exemplify the larger body of work which can only be enumerated here. Like Lani Guinier's controversial writings about `authentic Afro-Americans' and `equal outcomes,' they are not isolated or ill-considered comments. Rather, they reflect decades of serious and extraordinarily consistent, if wrong-headed, thinking about and advocacy of extreme national security policies.

And, as with Prof. Guinier's record, President Clinton will be inextricably associated with--and obliged to defend--such fringe sentiments should he seek Morton Halperin's confirmation by the Senate. Consequently, Mr. Clinton's decision whether to withdraw this bizarre nomination, as the Center strongly recommends, will be more than just a test of the attention he pays to Halperin's writings. It will also, inescapably, be a test of his judgment and the credibility of any claim he might yet make to credentials as a `New Democrat' with responsible views on defense and foreign policy.

The Center for Security Policy.


On the Fundamental Nature of the Cold War

`The Soviet Union apparently never even contemplated the overt use of military force against Western Europe * * *. The Soviet posture toward Western Europe has been, and continues to be, a defensive and deterrent one. The positioning of Soviet ground forces in Eastern Europe and the limited logistical capability of these forces suggests an orientation primarily toward defense against a Western attack.' (Defense Strategies for the Seventies, 1971)

`* * * Every action which the Soviet Union and Cuba have taken in Africa has been consistent with the principles of international law. The Cubans have come in only when invited by a government and have remained only at their request * * *. The American public needs to understand that Soviet conduct in Africa violates no Soviet-American agreements nor any accepted principles of international behavior. It reflects simply a different Soviet estimate of what should happen in the African continent and a genuine conflict between the United States and the Soviet Union.' (`American Military Intervention: Is It Ever Justified?', The Nation, June 9, 1979)

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On U.S. International Commitments

`One of the great disappointments of the Carter Administration is that it has failed to give any systematic reconsideration to the security commitments of the United States. [For example, President Carter's] decision to withdraw [U.S. ground forces from Korea] was accompanied by a commitment to keep air and naval units in and around Korea--a strong reaffirmation by the United States of its security commitment to Korea. This action prevented a careful consideration of whether the United States wished to remain committed to the security of Korea * * *. Even if a commitment is maintained, a request for American military intervention should not be routinely honored.' (The Nation, June 9, 1979)

On the Use of U.S. Military Power Abroad

`All of the genuine security needs of the United States can be met by a simple rule which permits us to intervene [only] when invited to do so by a foreign government * * *. The principle of proportion would require that American intervention be no greater than the intervention by other outside powers in the local conflict. We should not assume that once we intervene we are free to commit whatever destruction is necessary in order to secure our objectives.' (The Nation, June 9, 1979)

On the U.S. Defense Establishment

Referring to the Reagan defense buildup: `Are we now buying the forces to meet the real threats to our security? Unfortunately, there is little reason to be confident that we are.' (New York Times, June 7, 1981)

`In the name of protecting liberty from communism, a massive undemocratic national security structure was erected during the Cold War, which continues to exist even though the Cold War is over. Now, with the Gulf War having commenced, we are seeing further unjustified limitations of constitutional rights using the powers granted to the executive branch during the Cold War.' (United Press International, January 28, 1991)

On the U.S. Intelligence Establishment

`Using secret intelligence agencies to defend a constitutional republic is akin to the ancient medical practice of employing leeches to take blood from feverish patients. The intent is therapeutic, but in the long run the cure is more deadly than the disease. Secret intelligence agencies are designed to act routinely in ways that violate the laws or standards of society.' (The Lawless State: The Crimes of the U.S. Intelligence Agencies, 1976)

`You can never preclude abuses by intelligence agencies and, therefore, that is a risk that you run if you decide to have intelligence agencies. I think there is a very real tension between a clandestine intelligence agency and a free society. I think we accepted it for the first time during the Cold War period and I think in light of the end of the Cold War we need to assess a variety of things at home, including secret intelligence agencies, and make sure that we end the Cold War at home as we end it abroad.' (MacNeil/Lehrer Newshour, July 23, 1991)

`Generally, secrecy has been used more to disguise government policy from American citizens than to protect information from the prying eyes of the KGB * * *. U.S. government officials admit that experts in the Soviet Union know more about American policies abroad than American citizens do.' (The Lawless State)

`* * * The intelligence [service's] * * * monastic training prepared officials not for saintliness, but for crime, for acts transgressing the limits of accepted law and morality * * *. The abuses of the intelligence agencies are one of the symptoms of the amassing of power in the postwar presidency; the only way to safeguard against future crimes is to alter that balance of power * * *.

`Clandestine government means that Americans give up something for nothing--they give up their right to participation in the political process and to informed consent in exchange for grave assaults on basic rights and a long record of serious policy failures abroad.' (The Lawless State)

`Secrecy * * * does not serve national security * * * . Covert operations are incompatible with constitutional government and should be abolished.' (`Just Say No: The Case Against Covert Action,' The Nation, March 21, 1987)

`The primary function of the [intelligence] agencies is to undertake disreputable activities that presidents do not wish to reveal to the public or expose to congressional debate.' (The Lawless State)

`CIA defenders offer us the specter of Soviet power, the KGB, and the Chinese hordes. What they fail to mention is more significant: they have never been able successfully to use espionage or covert action techniques against the USSR or China, which are the only two nations that could conceivably threaten the United States * * * . The `successes' of covert action and espionage, of which the CIA is so proud, have taken place in countries that are no threat to the security of the United States.' (The Lawless State)

`Spies and covert action are counterproductive as tools in international relations. The costs are too high; the returns too meager. Covert action and spies should be banned and the CIA's Clandestine Services Branch disbanded.' (The Lawless State)

On Behalf of Extreme Interpretations of the First Amendment

Under the First Amendment, Americans have every right to seek to `impede or impair' the functions of any federal agency, whether it is the FTC or the CIA, by publishing information acquired from unclassified sources.' (`The CIA's Distemper: How Can We Unleash the Agency When It Hasn't Yet Been Leashed?', The New Republic, February 9, 1980)

`Lawful dissent and opposition to a government should not call down upon an individual any surveillance at all and certainly not surveillance as intrusive as a wiretap.' (`National Security and Civil Liberties,' Foreign Policy, Winter 1975-76)

In opposition to draft legislation setting heavy criminal penalties for Americans who deliberately identify undercover U.S. intelligence agents: `[Such legislation] will chill public debate on important intelligence issues and is unconstitutional * * * . What we have is a bill which is merely symbolic in its protection of agents but which does violence to the principles of the First Amendment.' (UPI, April 8, 1981)

In criticizing scientists who `refused to help the lawyers representing The Progressive and its editors' in fighting government efforts to halt the magazine's publication of detailed information about the design and manufacturing of nuclear weapons: `They failed to understand that the question of whether publishing the `secret of the H-bomb' would help or hinder non-proliferation efforts was beside the point. The real question was whether the government had the right to decide what information should be published. If the government could stop publication of [this] article, it could, in theory, prevent publication of any other material that it thought would stimulate proliferation.' (`Secrecy and National Security,' The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, August 1985)

In response to government attempts to close down the Washington offices of the PLO: `It is clearly a violation of the rights of free speech and association to bar American citizens from acting as agents seeking to advance the political ideology of any organization, even if that organization is based abroad. Notwithstanding criminal acts in which the PLO may have been involved, a ban on advocacy of all components of the PLO'S efforts will not withstand constitutional scrutiny.' (The Nation, October 10, 1987)

In arguing that the random use of polygraph tests to find spies was unconstitutional: `Congress should strip these measures from the bill and start attacking the genuine problems, such as over-classification of information.' (Associated Press, July 8, 1985)

On U.S. Aid to Foreign Pro-Democratic Movements

Regarding President Reagan's veto of a bill tying U.S. military aid to El Salvador to improved human rights, `[This action] makes clear that the administration has reconciled itself to unqualified support for those engaged in the systematic practice of political murder.' (Washington Post, December 1, 1983)

Halperin called U.S. aid to the pro-democracy Contra rebels `ineffective and immoral.' (Associated Press, October 2, 1983)

On Nuclear Strategy and Arms Control

As reported by the New York Times on November 23, 1983: `Mr. Halperin said the most important contribution American officials could make to stability would be `to renounce the notion that nuclear weapons can be used for any other purpose than to deter nuclear attack.' He also argued that the United States should abandon plans to attack Soviet missile silos in responding to a nuclear attack. For one thing, he said, the missiles would probably have already been fired. Also, he said, a high degree of accuracy would be required.'

As reported by the Chicago Tribune on December 11, 1987: `Halperin explained the NATO deterrent strategy known as coupling, whereby a Soviet conventional attack in Europe would be met with Allied tactical, and if the Soviets persisted, strategic nuclear weapons, in this way: `First, we fight conventionally until we're losing. Then we fight with tactical nuclear weapons until we're losing; then we blow up the world.'

Referring to the Nuclear Freeze proposal: `Sounds like good arms control to me.' (Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, March 1983)

On Classification of Sensitive Information

`While the most flagrant abuses of the rights of Americans associated with the Cold War are thankfully gone from the scene, we have been left behind with a legacy of secrecy that continues to undermine democratic principles.' (Boston Globe, July 26, 1992)

Halperin called the government's prosecution of Samuel Loring Morison, who was convicted of disclosing classified satellite photos of a Soviet aircraft carrier under construction `an extraordinary threat to the First Amendment.' (Washington Post, October 8, 1985).


`American Military Intervention: Is It Ever Justified?'--The Nation (June 9, 1979)


Halperin believes that the United States possesses the right to intervene abroad only when three conditions are met: First, the United States must be invited to intervene by a foreign government. Second, intervention must be debated thoroughly and openly in the public and approved by both houses of Congress before being realized. Third, and U.S. military intervention must be in accordance with both international law and the United Nations charter.

According to Halperin, the United States is justified in its intervention if, and only if, these principles have been met. But the United States still needs to be certain that it does not use more force than is necessary to accomplish its objectives; that is, the U.S. is not free to use whatever force it deems necessary during that intervention.

Pertinent Quotes:

`The principle of proportion would require that American intervention be no greater than the intervention by other outside powers in the local conflict.'

`We should not assume that once we intervene we are free to commit whatever destruction is necessary in order to secure our objectives.'

`The American public needs to understand that Soviet conduct in Africa violates no Soviet-American agreements nor any accepted principles of international behavior. It reflects simply a different Soviet estimate of what should happen in the African continent and a genuine conflict between the United States and the Soviet Union.'

`The kind of secret commitments that the United States in the past made to countries such as Thailand or Spain to intervene with military force when necessary should be clearly prohibited.'

`The United States should never contemplate intervention unless that intervention is consistent with principles embodied in the United Nations Charter, international law, and bilateral agreements including the Soviet-American agreement.'

`Moreover, all the genuine security needs of the United States can be met by a simple rule which permits us to intervene when invited to do so by a foreign government * * *. In my judgment, there are no circumstances that would justify the United States using nuclear weapons unless those weapons were used first by an opposing power.'

`One of the great disappointments of the Carter Administration is that it has failed to give any systematic reconsideration to the security commitments of the United States. In several cases it has in fact changed some aspects of American policy but done it in ways which appear to reinforce the commitment rather than to move away from it.'

`The Carter Administration's actions in Korea provide a classic example of this. The President made a decision that the United States would withdraw some forces from Korea not because he had concluded that the United States would not use military force to defend those interests but rather because he concluded that those commitments could be met without the continued stationing of American ground forces in Korea. Thus, the decision to withdraw the forces was accompanied by a commitment to keep air and naval units in and around Korea--a strong reaffirmation by the United States of its security commitment to Korea. This action prevented a careful consideration of whether the United States wished to remain committed to the security of Korea * * *. Even if a commitment is maintained, a request for American military intervention should not be routinely honored.'

`All of the genuine security needs of the United States can be met by a simple rule which permits us to intervene when invited to do so by a foreign government * * *. I would argue that a necessary condition of any American intervention, including military intervention, is that it be consistent with a reasonable interpretation of the standards of the United Nations Charter, of international law and of any bilateral agreements that we may have negotiated.'

`I would add a second prerequisite for any evaluation of a particular situation to determine whether the United States should intervene, i.e., that the intervention decisions must be made in a way which is consistent with American constitutional process. If the decision has to be made in ways which violate these procedures, then it should not be made. The procedures include public discussion of alternatives and public debate on the relevant facts * * *. These arguments, briefly summarized, constitute, in my view, an overwhelming case against covert operations since such operations must by definition be carried on in secret and cannot be evaluated even on a post hoc basis.'

`Ending The Cold War At Home'--Foreign Policy, Winter 1990-91 (with Jeanne Wood)


Halperin contends that the Cold War brought about numerous limitations on our constitutional liberties and with its conclusion should come the curtailment of government's intrusion upon the liberties of its citizens. Policies such as the denying or revoking of security clearances based on basis of political beliefs or sexual orientation, control of `sensitive' information, restrictions on travel abroad and immigration policies aimed at keeping `terrorists' out of the U.S. should be eradicated. He urges Congress to take steps to ensure that new `threats' do not replace the Cold War as justifications for infringing on constitutional rights.

Pertinent Quotes:

`The national security apparatus that was put in place to wage the Cold War is now a burgeoning bureaucracy in search of a new mission.'

`Another way the government circumvents the recent legal reforms is by labeling foreigners `terrorists' based on their political support for guerrilla movements Washington disapproves of, such as the Irish Republican Army.'

`[Needed] legislation should, among other things, reaffirm Congress' constitutional mandate authority in the conduct of foreign affairs; make the information available to Congress (and to the public) that is necessary for it to exercise its authority; end restrictions on the free flow of information and ideas across U.S. borders; and restore the First Amendment, due process, and privacy rights that have been circumscribed in the name of national security.'

`President George Bush's act of putting U.S. troops in a position where conflict could erupt at any moment (Operation Desert Shield), violated an unambiguous constitutional principle. * * *

`Standard Form 86 (questionnaire for applicants to sensitive or critical government positions) asks intrusive and irrelevant questions regarding Communist party membership, prior arrests (whether or not they resulted in a conviction), drug and alcohol abuse, and private medical information, including mental health history.'

`International terrorism is rapidly supplanting the communist threat as the primary justification for wholesale deprivations of civil liberties and distortions of the democratic process.'

`The constitutional rights of Americans have also been major casualties in the `war on drugs'. * * * Gross invasions of privacy such as urine testing, excessive property forfeitures and seizures without due process of law, the circulation of extensive government files on suspected drug offenders, and border patrols and checkpoints that inhibit free travel, all are among the draconian actions deemed necessary to wage the war on drugs.'

`The elimination of these impediments to democratic decision-making should be given a high priority by the administration, Congress, and the public. This will require a massive public education campaign, because the perceived need for such limitations on domestic freedom has become so ingrained in the American psyche that
most Americans are either not conscious of them or unaware that these are relatively new restrictions permitted only during the Cold War.'

`Just Say No: The Case Against Covert Action'--The Nation, March 21, 1987


Halperin maintains in this article--as in many of his other published works--that covert operations have not contributed to the national security and instead threaten America's democracy. He argues that the findings of the Senate Intelligence Committee's 1975-76 investigation led by Sen. Frank Church (D-ID) and the debacle of the Iran/Contra affair demonstrate the illegality and negative consequences of clandestine policy, which should be prohibited under the dictates of the First Amendment. Covert operations breed a disrespect for the truth and the rule of law. Congress should not limit itself to restraining America's capability to conduct covert operations, but enact a total ban.

Pertinent Quotes:

`If the Church Committee report didn't make it clear enough, there can no longer be any doubt that covert operations are incompatible with constitutional government and should be abolished.'

`Covert operations involve breaking the laws of other nations, and those who conduct them come to believe that they can also break U.S. law and get away with it * * *. Covert operations breed a disrespect for the truth.'

`Lawful Wars'--Foreign Policy, Fall 1988


Halperin believes that the system of checks and balances has been malfunctioning with regards to the implementation of American foreign policy. It has gradually been distorted from the original implied powers in the Constitution. A system of prior consultation is needed. He also contends that a system of `overt covert' actions, approved by Congress and the president, should replace traditional covert actions. The Congress would debate the operation as a whole but not the essential details. This would ensure a democratic consensus prior to the operation itself so as to avoid potential political problems later.

Halperin believes there should, in addition, be a permanent consultative body that the President must consult with prior to using force. They should be consulted prior to any covert military action, hostage rescue or military assistance to allies engaged in a military conflict.

Pertinent Quotes:

`Restoring Congress' constitutional role demands that Congress activate its full share of authority over paramilitary operations by taking the `covert' out of covert action.'

`The only way to stop this pattern [of abuse] is to impose an absolute requirement of public approval to bar paramilitary operations that are covert.'

`National Security and Civil Liberties'--Foreign Policy, Winter 1975-76


According to Halperin, there is, during wartime and times of crisis, frequently an untoward erosion of basic civil rights. Until Watergate this was accepted by most as a necessary evil to safeguard the nation's security. The Watergate affair, however, highlighted the need to strike a balance between national security concerns and American's civil liberties. To achieve this balance there needs to be input from national security experts outside and inside of the government.

Halperin obviously feels a special passion born of personal experience about wiretapping. He argues that this practice is a good example of how civil liberties can be compromised under the guise of national security. The Fourth Amendment guarantees against general searches and searches without a warrant. Wiretaps are, by nature, general. Wiretaps are not vital and have proven less effective than other intelligence gathering methods.

Pertinent Quote:

`Wiretapping and other electronic surveillance may also affect the First Amendment right to free speech, free press, and free association in that it interferes with the exercise of those rights and may cast a chilling effect on them by raising the fear that the government is monitoring those activities * * * Congress should resist any proposal to give the government power to wiretap with or without a warrant on any standard less than probable cause to believe that a crime is being committed.'

`Oversight is Irrelevant if C.I.A. Director Can Waive the Rules'--The Center [for National Security Studies] Magazine, March/April 1979.


Halperin believes that procedures and regulations which provide oversight of the intelligence community are inadequate and lead to activity which violates the fundamental rights of the American system, and abuses the Constitution. The Director of Central Intelligence should not have the power to wave constraints when
he feels they interfere with the job he has to do. It is the domain of Congress and the public to grant such authority. Intelligence collection must then operate within those limits, even if they reduce effectiveness. The Intelligence community does not need broad capability to conduct covert operations, the most useful intelligence comes from good analysis of information from public sources.

Pertinent Quotes:

`We should not let the CIA decide what are acceptable constraints on their activities. We must recognize that the goal is not the most efficient intelligence service imaginable.'

`The problem of bad intelligence is not due to not having enough spies. The problem of bad intelligence is poor analysis and not drawing on public sources of information.'

`Secrecy and National Security'--The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, August 1985.


Halperin contends that the first amendment supersedes national security. In order to conduct an informed public debate on national security issues, the gathering of intelligence and its dissemination must adhere to the First Amendment. Even information pertaining to the construction of nuclear weapons can not be protected at the expense of the public debate. Through successive cases (e.g., the Pentagon Papers), the Executive branch has used the Courts to violate the First Amendment in order to gag individuals in the name of national security.

Pertinent Quotes:

`[U.S. scientists] failed to understand that the question of whether publishing the `Secret of the H-Bomb' would help or hinder nonproliferation effort was beside the point. The real question was whether the government had the right to decide what information should be published.'

`This involvement of the Judiciary in the enforcement of the executive branch's decisions about what national security information must be kept secret is an extraordinarily ominous development.'

`The CIA's Distemper'--The New Republic, February 9, 1980.


In this article, Halperin contends that severe limitations and restrictions on the CIA put into place after the Church committee investigation are both desirable and effective and should be preserved. He criticizes President Carter for attempting to remove or modify a number of these restrictions. In particular, he opposes any reduction in the number of congressional oversight committees and, consequently, the number of people who are briefed on covert intelligence matters due to the potential for leaks. Halperin contends that the Hughes/Ryan amendment of 1974--which stipulated that before the CIA undertakes any covert activity for any purpose other than intelligence gathering it must report to the president and the appropriate committees--has not resulted in a significant number of leaks.

In keeping with his radical views on the desirability of making public information about CIA covert operatives and intelligence sources and methods, Halperin also defends the right to publicize such information as long as it is acquired through unclassified channels.

Pertinent Quotes:

`The [Freedom of Information Act] does require the CIA to respond to requests from people it may not like, such as this writer or Philip Agee, and even to answer queries that it suspects emanate from the KGB--The FOIA is expensive, but that seems a price well worth paying.'

`* * * under the First Amendment, Americans have every right to seek to `impede or impair' the functions of any federal agency, whether it is the FTC or the CIA, by publishing information acquired from unclassified sources.'

`The Freeze is Arms Control'--The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, March 1983


Halperin argues that the House of Representatives and the Senate would be wise to give serious thought and consideration to the nuclear freeze resolution awaiting congressional action. He takes to task particularly those advocates of arms control who dismiss the freeze on the grounds that is neither possible nor verifiable, arguing that these `arms controllers' will `provide the most effective arguments' against the freeze.

Pertinent Quotes:

`No one who takes the trouble to study the freeze can * * * conclude that it is not a serious, well-thought-out proposal which may or may not acceptable to either the
Administration or the Soviet Union. If arms controllers would concede just that much they would do much to increase support for the freeze in Congress.'

`Can anyone really believe that the Administration would be in the START talks or be discussing substantial reductions of not for the freeze movement? If the freeze is seen to be losing support in Congress then no arms control will be possible under this Administration. In the longer run the viability of the freeze movement is what will make possible the ratification of any agreement which the next Administration might reach with the Soviet Union.'

`* * * Is the freeze not the best possible arms control agreement? The danger now is not so much threat of a first strike but the danger that both sides will come to believe that nuclear war can be limited, won and survived. By heading off the next generation of controlled weapons, the freeze would do much to dispel that dangerous belief. * * * Sounds like good arms control to me.'

`We Need New Intelligence Charters'--The Center [for National Security Studies] Magazine, May/June 1985


In this article, Halperin returns to a favorite theme: The intelligence community is not to be trusted and must be subjected to new limitations and additional congressional oversight in order to achieve the proper balance between our interest in national security and our interest in civil liberties.

Pertinent Quote:

`The Federal Bureau of Investigation's counter-intelligence program (COINTELPRO), for example, was as serious a threat to individual freedom in the United States as one can imagine.'

[Page: S10791]


Present: On 31 March 1993, the White House announced the President's intention to nominate Halperin to the newly created position of Assistant Secretary of Defense for Democracy and Human Rights. Since that time, he has been working in the Pentagon nominally as a consultant but on an essentially full time basis in a manner that appears to exceed congressional and departmental restrictions on the involvement of nominees in policy-making prior to their confirmation.

Halperin is formally still listed as a Senior Associate of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and the Baker Professor at George Washington University's Elliott School of International Affairs.

1984-1992: Director of the Center for National Security Studies (CNSS), originally an offshoot of the hard left-wing Institute for Policy Studies (IPS). Halperin was also the director of the Washington Office of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), with responsibility for the national legislative program of the ACLU.

1977: One of the founders and the director of the Campaign to Stop Government Spying, which changed its name the following year to the more benign Campaign for Political Rights. Like CNSS, the Campaign was populated with personnel associated with the Institute for Policy Studies and dozens of other dubious organizations (e.g., the National Committee Against Repressive Legislation, reportedly a Communist Party front).

Also in 1977, while serving as the deputy director of the Center for National Security Studies, Halperin went to London to help in the defense of Philip Agee. At the time, Agee was in the process of being deported from Great Britain as a security risk for collaborating with Cuban and Soviet intelligence.

1969-1973: Senior Fellow associated with the Foreign Policy Division of the Brookings Institution.

1969: Member of senior staff of the National Security Council during the Nixon Administration with responsibility for program analysis and planning. During this period, the information concerning secret U.S. bombings of targets in Cambodia was leaked to the New York Times. Then NSC Advisor suspected Halperin and colleague Anthony Lake of the leak and authorized FBI wiretaps on their office and home phones.

1966-1969: Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs, with responsibility for political-military planning and arms control.



A Proposal for a Ban on the Use of Nuclear Weapons, Special Studies Group, Study Memorandum Number 4, Washington, 1961.

Strategy and Arms Control, with Thomas C. Schelling, The Twentieth Century Fund, New York, 1961.

Limited War: An Essay on the Development of the Theory, Center for International Affairs, Harvard University, Cambridge, 1962.

China and the Bomb, Frederick A. Praeger Publishers, Washington, 1965.

Communist China and Arms Control, with Dwight H. Perkins, East Asian Research Center--Center for International Affairs, Harvard University, Cambridge, 1965.

Is China Turning In? Center for International Affairs, Harvard University, Cambridge, 1965.

China and Nuclear Proliferation, Center for Policy Studies, University of Chicago, Chicago, 1966.

Contemporary Military Strategy, Little, Brown and Company, Boston, 1967.

Defense Strategies for the Seventies. University Press of America, Washington, 1971.

The Lawless State: The Crimes of the U.S. Intelligence Agencies, with Jerry J. Berman, Robert L. Borosage and Christine M. Marwick, Center for National Security Studies, Washington, 1976.

Freedom Versus National Security, with Daniel N. Hoffman, Chelsea House Publishers, New York, 1977.

Top Secret: National Security and the Right to Know, with Daniel N. Hoffman, New Republic Books, Washington, 1977.

Nuclear Fallacy: Dispelling the Myth of Nuclear Strategy, Ballinger Publishing Company, Cambridge, 1987.

Self-Determination in the New World Order, with David J. Scheffer and Patricia L. Small, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Washington, 1992.

[Page: S10792]


`Nuclear Weapons and Limited War,' Journal of Conflict Resolution, June 1961.

`On Resuming Tests: Lessons the Moratorium Should Have Taught Us,' The New Republic, April 30, 1962.

`The President and the Military,' Foreign Affairs, January 1972.

`Led Astray by the CIA,' The New Republic, June 28, 1975.

`The Most Secret Agents,' The New Republic, July 26, 1975.

`CIA: Denying What's Not in Writing,' The New Republic, October 4, 1975.

`The Cult of Incompetence,' The New Republic, November 8, 1975.

`National Security and Civil Liberties,' Foreign Policy, Winter 1975-1976.

`Secrecy and the Right to Know,' with Daniel N. Hoffman, Law and Contemporary Problems, Summer 1976.

`Oversight is Irrelevant if CIA Director Can Waive the Rules,' The Center [for National Security Studies] Magazine, March/April 1979.

`American Military Intervention: Is It Ever Justified?', The Nation, June 9, 1979.

`The CIA's Distemper,' The New Republic, February 9, 1980.

`NATO and the TNF Controversy: Threats to the Alliance,' Orbis, Spring 1982.

`The Freeze is Arms Control,' Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, March 1983.

`The Key West Key,' with David Halperin, Foreign Policy, Winter 1983-1984.

`We Need New Intelligence Charters,' The Center [for National Security Studies] Magazine, May/June 1985.

`Secrecy and National Security,' Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, August 1985.

`The Case Against Covert Action,' The Nation, March 2, 1987.

`The Nuclear Fallacy,' Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, January/February 1988.

`Lawful Wars,' with Gary M. Stein, Foreign Policy, Fall 1988.

`Ending the Cold War at Home,' with Jeanne M. Woods, Foreign Policy, Winter 1990-1991.