FBI suspected leftist magazine was a foreign agent when it accurately reported on the CIA

Files recently released to MuckRock shed light on the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s investigation of the radical Ramparts magazine. Originally classified SECRET, the investigation described in the FBI files was an “internal security” matter relating to the magazine’s registration status. Paralleling and seemingly predicting some of the later investigations of WikiLeaks, the Bureau suspected that Ramparts “may currently be engaged in acts of distribution of propaganda, acting as a political agent,

Source: FBI suspected “Ramparts” was a foreign agent that provided propaganda and intelligence services • MuckRock

1 thought on “FBI suspected leftist magazine was a foreign agent when it accurately reported on the CIA”

  1. Essential reading on this subject is Peter Richardson’s A Bomb in Every Issue, which is an informal history of Ramparts magazine. The part about the FBI obsessing over the magazine’s “foreign” financing is particularly funny, since it was always in money trouble. The publishers spent lavishly on investigative reporting–and on promotional events–while subscriptions and retail rack sales never made up the difference. It was up to the magazine’s few individual investors to make up the shortfall, and money troubles consumed them in the couple of years before the magazine’s demise in, IIRC, 1975 or 1976.

    The magazine was outrageous, was radical (who today would make Eldridge Cleaver a contributing editor?), but, they were very often dead-nuts on their reporting. That the FBI would think they had to be spies and provocateurs for the Soviets because they regularly embarrassed the CIA isn’t surprising, given the times and the fact that the agency still bears the imprint of Hoover. It’s been over forty years since the magazine was in print, and notable sections of the FBI’s Ramparts file are still redacted. The taste and smell of the institutional paranoia in which Hoover steeped the agency is still detectable.

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