Senate Select Committee on Presidential Campaign Activiti...

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.Caucus Room, Russell Senate Office Building
Year Shot:
1973  (Actual Year)
Tape Master:
Original Film:
[00.46.45] Senator ERVIN. The committee is anxious to avoid disclosing any matters which affect national security. which are matters defined as matters relating to national defense or relating to our relations, with other nations and for this reason we will not make this first document public. Senator BARER. Mr. Chairman, may I say a word in that respect? Senator ERVIN., Yes. Senator BAKER. I, too, would like to join in commending Mr. Murphy who, in addition to being- Deputy Director of the joint Atomic Energy Committee staff, is the security officer of the Atomic Energy Committee. I am a member of the Joint Committee on Atomic Energy and while we, are going along with bread and butter, I would like to thank Congressman Mel Price, Who is Chairman, for consenting to the additional burden on the staff of the Joint Committee on Atomic Energy to assure the storage of these documents was done in accordance with the requirements of the law. Senator ERVIN. One other question and then I will turn you back to Senator Weicker. How did you get possession of these documents including the one that Mr. Murphy retained custody of? Mr. DEAN. The documents were originally In the possession of Mr. Tom Huston, who had been assigned. I believe directly by the President to -work on this project. When I came on the White House staff, Huston was placed on my staff and was on my staff for some time. I had a general awareness of the fact that he was working on this project, but none of the specifics. At the time Mr. Huston was departing the staff he turned over the documents to me that I had possession of. Some of the documents that that are contained and I maintained in the file, I had never seen before the time he turned them over to me. The only--I had seen the basic documents shortly after I joined the White House staff when Mr. Haldeman told me that Mr. Huston had been working get the plan implemented, but there were some difficulties in implementation. That is basically how I came in contact with the matter. Senator ERVIN. Have you had the physical custody of these papers since that time? Mr. DEAN. Well, I had them until I took them and placed them in a safety deposit box under an instruction of Senator Mansfield that anything that might have any bearing on this entire matter should be Preserved. Senator ERVIN. Senator Weicker you may resume your examination I thought it was wise to bring all of the documents in evidence that we think ought to be put there. Senator WEICKER. Thank you. Mr. Chairman. Now, Mr. Dean, would you be good enough then to read to the committee the memorandum from you to 'Mr. Mitchell Which, I believe now, I have got to rely on my memory of several months time since I have seen these things dated in September 1970; is that correct? Mr. DEAN. September 18, 1970. Senator WEICKER. September 18. [00.50.14-DEAN'S work in 1970 to establish Domestic Intelligence operations] Mr. DEAN. [reading]. Memorandum For the. Attorney General: Pursuant to our conversation yesterday, 'September 17, 1970, I suggest the following procedures to commence our domestic intelligence operation as quickly as possible. 1. Interagency Domestic Intelligence Unit. A key to the entire operation will be the creation of an interagency intelligence unit for both operational and evaluation purposes. Obviously, the selection of persons to this unit will be of vital importance to the success of the mission. As we discussed the selection of the personnel for this unit is an appropriate first step for several reasons. First, effective coordination of the different agencies must be developed it an early stage through the establishment of the unit. Second. Hoover has indicated a strong opposition to the creation of such a unit and, to bring the FBI fully on board, this seems an first step to guarantee their proper and full participation in the program. Third, the unit can serve to make appropriate recommendations for the type of intelligence that should be immediately pursued by the various agencies. In regard to this third point. I believe we agreed that it would inappropriate to have any blanket removal of restrictions: rather, the most appropriate procedure would be to decide on the type of intelligence we need, based on an assessment of the recommendations of this unit, and then to proceed to remove the restraints as necessary to obtain such intelligence. To proceed to create the interagency intelligence unit. particularly the evaluation group or committee I recommend that we request the names of four nominees from each of the intelligence agencies involved. While the precise composition of the unit may vary as we gain experience, I think that two members should be appointed initially from each agency, in addition to your personal representative, who should also be involved in the proceedings. Because of the interagency aspects of this request it would probably be best if the request came from the White House, if you agree, I will make such a request of the agency heads; however, I feel that it is essential that you work this out with Hoover before I have any dealings with him directly. [00.52.37]