…..Legendary CIA office Lucien Conein described Phoenix as a very good blackmail scheme for the central government: “If you don’t do what I want, you’re VC.”
Modeled on the Ford Motor Company’s “command post” structure, Phoenix concentrated power in a chief executive officer and an operating committee at the top of the organizational chart.
Supported by a computerized statistical reporting unit, management assigned “neutralization” quotas and other goals to participating agencies.
But Phoenix was a CIA program, and deniability was one of its main objectives: Thus, stated policy (protecting the people from terrorism) was contradicted by the operational reality (terrorizing the public into submission).
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