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Bush Directs CIA to Undertake Sweeping, Lethal Covert Action

HeadlineOct 22, 2001

President Bush has signed an intelligence order directing the CIA to undertake its most sweeping and lethal covert action since the founding of the agency in 1947. The presidential finding explicitly calls for the destruction of Osama bin Laden and his worldwide al-Qaeda network. The president also added more than $1 billion to the agency’s so-called war on terrorism, most of it for the new covert action. The operation will include what officials said is unprecedented coordination between the CIA and commando and other military units. The CIA has also been operating in southern Afghanistan, trying to win over ethnic Pashtun leaders not solidly behind the Taliban. Bush administration officials have not disclosed other countries against which U.S. covert operations may be directed.

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