Office of Strategic Services

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Group.png Office of Strategic Services  
(Intelligence agencyHistory Commons Powerbase Sourcewatch SpartacusRdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
Office of Strategic Services.jpeg
An OSS training film
SuccessorStrategic Services Unit
FormationJune 13, 1942
Extinction30 September 1945
LeaderHead of the Office of Strategic Services
Typeintelligence agency
Interest ofOmer Becu, Jacob Esterline, Jacobus Oldenbroek
Membership• John Magruder
• Allen Dulles
• Frank Wisner
• David Bruce
• Whitney Hart Shepardson
• Thomas W. Braden
• Richard Helms
• William Casey
• Royall Tyler
• Kermit Roosevelt
• Tracy Barnes
• Arthur Schlesinger
• Stewart Alsop
• Charles B. Fahs
• Chadbourne Gilpatric
• Norman Holmes Pearson
• James Angleton
• Richard Ellman
• John Hay Whitney
• DeWitt Poole
• Ivar Bryce
• John Ford
• E. Howard Hunt
• Philip Horton
• Ernest Hemingway
• Francis Pickens Miller
• Alfred Parry
• Eugene Fodor
• Marcello Girosi
• Ilia Tolstoy
• Julia McWilliams Child
• Raymond Guest
• Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
• John Hemingway
• Serafino Romualdi
• Walter Levy
• Lawrence de Neufville
• Harold Weisberg
• Hugh Tovar
• John K. Singlaub
• Jacob Esterline
• William Diebold
• Michael Elkins
• Raymond Rocca
• Lyman Kirkpatrick
• Aline Griffith
• Hugh Montgomery (diplomat)
• C. D. Jackson
• Franklin Lindsay
• Paul Helliwell
• George H. Olmsted
• Henry Lithgow Roberts
• Ulius Amoss
• Louis Bloomfield
• Hans Tofte
• William Macomber
• Walter Sterling Surrey
• Robert Pickus
Precursor to the CIA.

The Office of Strategic Services was an intelligence agency set up during World War II. Its head William Donovan had been close to the British Security Coordination (BSC), which was instrumental in the Office's creation. Many BSC agents and collaborators became involved with the OSS.[1]

US President Truman ordered the OSS disbanded on 20 September 1945.[2] However, on 26 September, Donovan's Deputy, General John Magruder secured an order from Assistant Secretary of War John McCloy which preserved its operations as the Strategic Services Unit, keeping alive the hopes of those who advocated what would later become the Central Intelligence Agency.[3]


  1. Thomas E. Mahl, Desperate Deception, Brassey's 1999, p.182.
  2. Tim Weiner, Legacy of Ashes, Penguin, 2007, p.8.
  3. Tim Weiner, Legacy of Ashes, Penguin, 2007, p.10.