Five declassified frustrations from the CIA archives

Five declassified frustrations from the CIA archives

In the days before the passive-aggressive email, the Agency still found ways to let you know exactly how they feel

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Edited by Beryl Lipton

Intelligence work can make one feel awfully stupid, and in the Central Intelligence Agency’s 13 million pages of declassified documents, there are more than a few times that folks made their frustrations felt. Here are five of our favorites.

1. The Extremely Relatable Frustration

In an untitled memo from 1983, Deputy Director John McMahon made it crystal clear exactly how he felt about a (sadly, not included) proposal.

2. The Psychically-Channeled Frustration

During a 1980 remote viewing session as part of the decades-long STARGATE psychic research program, the viewer channeled the constant frustration of an authoritarian middle-manager.

3. The “Somebody Went to Private School” Frustration

During a discussion on the CIA’s proposed database of leaks, somebody decided to drop a subtle hint that they weren’t particularly pleased with the direction things were going, along with a less subtle one that they took AP Latin.

4. The “Cathy” Frustration

A 1974 shopping list for support flights starts with basic toiletries before veering into “Chocolate! Chocolate! Chocolate! Ack!” territory.

5. The “Tell Us How You Really Feel” Frustration

Hard to improve on this one, so we’ll just let it speak for itself.

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