The CIA has a director, an executive office and five main departments within the organization. They are the direction of digital innovation, the direction of analysis, the direction of operations, the direction of assistance and the direction of science and technology. All 21.575 staff can be organized under these positions and a diagram of the CIA structure can be found here. The President of the United States holds the supreme authority on the CIA and any secret operations in other countries must be approved by the president.
Worldwide, the CIA employs an estimated staff of 21.575. Robert Baer, who is an acclaimed political author and a former CIA agent, said that employees usually take a polygraph (lie detector) test every 3 in 5 to make sure they don’t hide anything from the organization. The CIA also has its own “university”, which holds 200 for 300 training courses per year which includes new employees and experienced staff. The facilities used for these courses, as well as for the subsequent training, have been located in Virginia, USA since 1950. To become a CIA employee you must undergo vigorous training and constant aptitude tests, which can be very challenging on the human psyche .
The official CIA motto is: “The work of a nation: the center of intelligence”. The CIA also has an unofficial motto: “And you will know the truth and the truth will set you free”. (John 8: 32). The modern CIA has evolved from an organization that has collected and analyzed intelligence to that of a broad organization that works to address many problems. These problems include counter-terrorism, non-proliferation, counter-espionage and, more recently, computer intelligence.
After World War 2, President Truman of the United States signed a document called the National Security Act. This document and the resulting policy were created because of how apparently the United States was unprepared during Pearl Harbor, as well as the knowledge that even the Soviet Union was preparing a similar policy at national and international level. As a result, the CIA originally started as an organization that would distribute foreign intelligence and analysis to the US government in the aftermath of World War II. The CIA came into formal existence on September 18, 1947.
- Current status
Today, the modern CIA aims to “collect, analyze, evaluate and disseminate (distribute) foreign intelligence” both nationally and internationally. The CIA is involved in covert operations in countries such as Russia, China, Cuba, North Korea and Iraq, among others. Some of the activities with which the CIA has been involved since its inception include the localization of Osama Bin Laden, the attempt to assassinate Cuban leader Fidel Castro during the Cold War, mass surveillance of the Internet and e-mail, as well as be a part of the disturbing torture charges during the presidency of George W. Bush. Although the CIA’s accurate budget has never been officially released, some estimates show the upside figure of $ 15 billion. The CIA is constantly represented in fictional works like films.