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Dulles, Allen Welsh

Dulles, Allen Welsh (1893–1969), lawyer, foreign service officer, and intelligence official.The grandson of one secretary of state and nephew of another, Dulles entered the foreign service in 1914. He spent World War I collecting intelligence in Bern, Switzerland, and subsequently assisted the U.S. delegation to the Versailles Conference and served in several embassies before resigning from the State Department in 1926. A Wall Street lawyer until the United States entered World War II, Dulles enlisted in the Office of Strategic Services. Returning to Bern, he earned a reputation as a master spy and covert operator, especially after his Operation Sunrise produced the secret surrender of Germany's forces in Italy without Soviet Knowledge.

In 1947, Dulles helped to draft the section of the National Security Act (1947) creating the Central Intelligence Agency, and in 1951 he became its deputy director for plans, charged with covert operations and clandestine collection. These were the priorities of 1953–61, his tenure as CIA director. Encouraged by President Dwight D. Eisenhower and supported by his brother John Foster Dulles, the secretary of state, he presided over the overthrow of governments in Iran and Guatemala, and the initiation of U‐2 spy planes to overfly the Soviet Union. He neglected research and analysis, however, and the 1961 Bay of Pigs fiasco in Cuba culminated a string of failures. Forced out by President Kennedy, Dulles's final government assignment was to investigate Kennedy's assassination as a member of the Warren Commission.
[See also Cold War: Domestic Course; Cuba, U.S. Military Involvement in.]

Bibliography

John Ranelagh , The Agency: The Rise and Fall of the CIA, 1986.
Peter Grose , Gentleman Spy: The Life of Allen Dulles, 1994.

Richard H. Immerman

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Dulles, Allen Welsh

Allen Welsh Dulles (dŭl´əs), 1893–1969, U.S. public official, b. Watertown, N.Y.; brother of John Foster Dulles. The Dulles brothers, born into America's political establishment, became extremely influential governmental figures, and during the cold war they played principal roles in the developing and implementing United States' interventionist foreign policy. Allen entered the diplomatic service in 1916 and became (1922) chief of the State Deptartment's division of Near Eastern affairs. In 1926 he resigned to practice law. During World War II he was a prominent member of the Office of Strategic Services. Returning (1951) to government service as deputy director of the Central Intelligence Agency, Dulles became director in 1953. Under his leadership, the CIA was strengthened and made a more effective element in the U.S. intelligence system. Dulles resigned in 1961 after a series of events (most notably the Bay of Pigs Invasion of Cuba) in which the CIA played a controversial role and aroused much criticism. His works include Germany's Underground (1947), The Craft of Intelligence (1963), and Secret Surrender (1966).

See biography by P. Grose (1994); S. Kinzer, The Brothers: John Foster Dulles, Allen Dulles, and Their Secret World War (2013).

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