Church Committee

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Group.png Church Committee   History Commons PowerbaseRdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
Church Committee.jpg
InterestsProject MKULTRA, Mind Control research, CIA/Assassinations
Membership• Frank Church
• Philip Hart
• Walter Mondale
• Walter Huddleston
• Robert Morgan
• Gary Hart
• John Tower
• Howard Baker
• Barry Goldwater
• Charles Mathias
• Richard Schweiker
• William G. Miller
• Frederick A. O. Schwartz
• Curtis Smothers
• Audrey Hatey

The Church Committee was the informal name of the US Senate's Select Committee To Study Governmental Operations With Respect To Intelligence Activities. It was set up as a result of growing concern about the activities of the CIA, and "led to revelations about many of the dark secrets within the CIA."[1] As a result, it contributed impetus to the offshoring of the US deep state.


The Church Committee contained lawyer Charles Mathias, who was well known to the Bilderberg group, having gone there already in 1967[2], 1968[3], 1970[4], 1972[5] and 1974.[6]


The Church Committee warned that covert operations had developed a dangerous "bureaucratic momentum." Numbering some 900 between 1960 and 1975, such operations were becoming "increasingly costly to America's interest and reputation," the committee concluded. But instead of proposing truly meaningful reforms-other than the creation of permanent oversight committees-the panel merely implored that covert operations be reserved for "grave threats to American security" and be "consistent with publicly defined U.S. foreign policy goals." New York Times columnist Anthony Lewis called its recommendations "a gamble that the American system of checks and balances can work even in the powerful secret world of intelligence."[7]

The commission recommended (like the Rockefeller Committee and the Pike Committee) strengthening the CIA Office of Inspector General. This was not followed.[8]


Documents by Church Committee

TitleDocument typePublication dateSubject(s)Description
Document:Covert Action in Chile, 1963-73report1976CIA
Operation Mockingbird
Chile/1973 coup d'état
A Church committee report of the hearings before them to study governmental operations with respect to intelligence activities of the United States Senate. A very thorough, but lengthy, investigation into CIA activity in Chile. Includes numerous instances of media manipulation and propaganda in the millions of dollars.
File:Church Committee - Congo.pdfreport1975Patrice Lumumba/AssassinationAn investigation into CIA involvement in the murder of Patrice Lumumba.
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