September 18, 1947 – With the passing of The National Security Act by President Harry S. Truman earlier in the year, this day marked the beginning of operations for The United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).
Following the events of World War II, The U.S. found themselves in admiration of the British’s capability to gather information about their enemies. It began a process of consolidating their counterintelligence and covert action capabilities.
The CIA (Also known as The Company or The Agency) was founded as a way to gather intelligence and counteract actions by the U.S.S.R. and its affiliated states. As it expanded, further operations and actions began to take place around the world. The main focus of CIA action internationally has been to utilize political maneuvers that would result in a better outcome for the United States and its allies.
From the late 1940s until the fall of the Soviet Union, the CIA was responsible for a number of operations aimed at controlling the spread of communist governments around the world. Some were more successful than others, but undoubtedly The Agency’s primary function during this time was to counter the threat of Communism.
Under President Richard Nixon, the CIA was most famously found to also be involved in domestic intelligence gathering. CIA Agents were working under the auspices of being involved in a plumbing firm when they were caught breaking into the Democratic National Convention’s offices at the Watergate Hotel in Washington, D.C.
The CIA operates around the world, with its headquarters in Langley, Virginia.