My Father Was Also a CIA Officer Outed by the Press

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IT was a national scandal, the first of its kind. A senior C.I.A. officer was exposed in the United States press by a "high official source." The story shot from newspaper to newspaper. The officer lost his job and went into hiding.

Six days later, with a conservative Republican leading the charge, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee grilled the secretary of defense, demanding a point-by-point refutation of the anonymous charges against the officer in the news media. The senators were also upset about the war that was starting. Why was the United States "going it alone, getting only token assistance from other countries"?

Soon a Democratic senator named Thomas Dodd made the fight bipartisan, demanding action against the "official source" behind the leak. "The official who was guilty of giving out this story to the press was himself guilty of violating the rules of security as well as the ethics that should govern relations between government departments," Dodd said. The official, the senator said, "should be identified and dismissed."

The year was 1963. The exposed C.I.A. officer was my father, John H. Richardson.

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