INTERVIEW SUBJECT, 1987:
JAMES ANGLETON, FORMER CHIEF OF COUNTER-INTELLIGENCE,
CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY (C.I.A.)
I asked the dying man how it all went so wrong.
With no emotion in his voice, but with his hand
trembling, [CIA spymaster James] Angleton replied:
“Fundamentally, the founding fathers of U.S. intelligence
were liars…Outside of their duplicity, the only thing they
had in common was a desire for absolute power. I did things
that, in looking back on my life, I regret. You know,
the CIA got tens of thousands of brave people killed…
We played with lives as if we owned them… You were in a
room full of people that you had to believe would
deservedly end up in hell.” Angleton slowly sipped his
tea and then said, “I will see them there soon enough.”
– Joseph Trento, The Secret History of the CIA
George Orwell’s seminal novel 1984 was published on this date in 1949
The voice from the telescreen was still pouring forth its tale of prisoners and booty and slaughter, but the shouting outside had died down a little. The waiters were turning back to their work. One of them approached with the gin bottle. Winston, sitting in a blissful dream, paid no attention as his glass was filled up. He was not running or cheering any longer. He was back in the Ministry of Love, with everything forgiven, his soul white as snow. He was in the public dock, confessing everything, implicating everybody. He was walking down the white-tiled corridor, with the feeling of walking in sunlight, and an armed guard at his back. The longhoped-for bullet was entering his brain.
He gazed up at the enormous face. Forty years it had taken him to learn what kind of smile was hidden beneath the dark moustache. O cruel, needless misunderstanding! O stubborn, self-willed exile from the loving breast! Two gin-scented tears trickled down the sides of his nose. But it was all right, everything was all right, the struggle was finished. He had won the victory over himself. He loved Big Brother.