The aspiring Central Intelligence Agency intern was ambi-tious and bright. His college fraternity had elected him their president and he was eyeing law schools. He had passed initial screenings, been flown to CIA headquarters, and had handled himself gloriously during a weekend of interviews and tests. But all was about to unravel when he faced the last hurdle in front of him—the polygraph exam. The young man struggled with the question “Have you ever used drugs?” He wondered if inhaling the dope of friends who had smoked in his presence counted. Why did the CIA still concern itself with such trifles? Then came the question that truly threw him off: “Have you ever had sex with a man?” In the early 1990s, the Agency still considered homosexual employees to be security risks, so saying “yes” would have immediately ended his chances, stellar qualifications notwithstanding. The problem was that the young man kept a dark secret, which until this point he had not shared with anybody: a male cousin had sexually abused him when he was seven years old. Both had been boys, and since no penetration had taken place, could one even use the phrase “sex with a man”? How to answer? “The anxiety rose in me,” he would later write, “like dust from a thing long neglected and abruptly disturbed.” When the young man answered in the negative, “the needle scratched wildly on the paper—lie.” And then the dams broke: “As soon as the test was over, I turned to the [interrogator] and the things that I had never let spill from my lips came pouring out. All of it.” After his confession, he pleaded for a retest. This time he answered “yes,” but again the needle moved in a sharp curve that indicated he was lying. Years later the same man, Charles Blow, now a columnist for the New York Times, concluded, “It took a machine designed to catch liars to help me see that I didn’t yet know my own truth.”1
Stories like this proliferate in the history of the polygraph. Although the experiences Americans have when they confront the machine vary, certain themes ring out with clarity: the sudden confrontation with one’s conscience; the anxiety and confusion aroused by the demand to boil down questions with complex individual connotations to a simple “yes” or “no”; the dread when confronted with the lie detector’s judgment; the need to unload one’s mind right away. Experiences such as the one described by Blow speak to a remarkable power of the polygraph and cry out for explanation.
They also pose questions: can simple physiological responses such as the ones measured by the polygraph—changes in blood pressure, pulse, breathing depth, and skin conductivity—reliably indicate that a person is lying? How significant can the findings of the polygraph be? How should these findings be used? Such questions—ranging from the philosophical to the technical—gain in significance and number when we put them in the context of the history of the American Cold War, when polygraph tests proliferated in the United States. What considerations made American leaders argue for the polygraph test? What ideological, bureaucratic, and political purposes did administrators and policymakers pursue when they insisted on polygraph exams, even on applicants for lowly internships? Did the test improve American national security? How would one even go about measuring if it did?
The issue of resistance to the polygraph is equally significant. Why did so many Americans insist that demanding polygraph tests of citizens was an abomination that approximated the totalitarian methods of the Soviet Union? Someone fully aware of the controversies that surrounded the polygraph was George Shultz, secretary of state during the Reagan administration, who once angrily noted that he would resign immediately if he were ever asked to take a polygraph exam. “I am deeply concerned about the attitudes and atmosphere in [Washington, DC] at present regarding these so-called lie detectors,” Shultz fumed. “I don’t even like to use the phrase ‘polygraph’ because it implies precision where precision does not exist. We all know what they pretend to be—lie detectors. But the truth is . . . that those machines cannot detect lies in a scientifically reliable manner.” Even so, he conceded, “Lie-detector tests have a limited place in our security program, to a different extent in different agencies. But they must not become an excuse or a substitute for a real security program.”2 Despite his objections, Shultz could not quite bring himself to condemn polygraph tests tout court. The conflicted mind of the secretary of state indicates yet another reason to explore the ambiguous significance of the polygraph in the history of American national security policy.
What follows is a comprehensive history of the polygraph as a symbol and tool of American Cold War policy. One of my central claims is that because many Americans perceived the Cold War as a project to protect not only their physical safety but also their spiritual purity, justifications for the use of the polygraph must be understood as Cold War narratives—tales about the American fight against a relentless, amoral, and therefore deceitful, totalitarian enemy: communism. This book shows that the discourse of the polygraph joined a variety of stories to forge a new American national identity: the hard-nosed, masculine aura of the instrument embodied a persona for Cold War America based in skepticism and cold, hard data, but also committed to fairness and honesty. Yet according to its critics, using such an instrument of intimidation threatened to erode the binary of “free world” versus “slave world.” To some, the methods that polygraph champions called for undermined the very values of justice, equality, and the presumption of innocence they claimed to protect. Polygraph debates thus revealed deep-seated fears many Americans had about the self-defeating character of Cold War policy: that by fighting communism, America was losing its democratic ethos. The polygraph, in short, became a site of controversy over the very nature of American Cold War policies.
The story of how a technology with questionable scientific credentials came to be used by official governmental agencies on a mass scale also informs and deepens our understanding of the routine implementation of Cold War policies. Security agencies conducted hundreds of thousands of polygraph tests in the decades after World War II. Administrators did not value these tests because of their scientific precision, but because of their utility in daily practice: they allowed for the timely processing of large numbers of security checks, and they could be administered in such a way that they produced actionable results as to the security reliability of individuals. In short, the polygraph was an instrument that made the American Cold War state possible. Yet one of the drawbacks of the polygraph was that it cast a shadow of doubt over the loyalty of individuals who asserted their patriotism and innocence. The often-traumatic experience provoked fierce protests from Americans across ideologies lines. I conclude that the polygraph was a quick-fix technology promising a definite scientific test of elusive values such as loyalty, and thus that it embodied fundamental conflicts in the interplay of American Cold War ideology and practice.
One of the conflicting demands the Cold War made on Americans was calling on them to value their freedom while remaining in a state of permanent alert.3 The polygraph, so its advocates claimed, was one method to square this circle. To them, it represented a promise of objectivity, neutrality, and fairness along with effective deterrence of spies and traitors. This promise explains, at least in part, the attraction that the polygraph held for CIA security officers who needed to both appeal to talented applicants and deter potential security risks. Indeed, a certain utopian urgency was part of America’s hardboiled Cold War. “By the dim, reflected light of the Soviet moons, the United States resolved to change,” wrote historian Walter McDougall, describing the impetus behind America’s leap into space after the Sputnik shock of 1957, when the successful Soviet launch of the first satellite into space plunged many Americans into an existential crisis. By the same token, some idealistic strategists and scientists desperately searched for a way to avoid the catastrophe of nuclear war by making politicians trustworthy again with the help of the polygraph. Seen this way, the story of the polygraph shares a striking family resemblance with other hallmarks of Cold War scientism—the belief that rigorous application of scientific methods could improve education, policymaking, and ultimately America’s democratic ethos. Only if we analyze the history of the polygraph as a narrative driven by American Cold War ambitions, similar to the story of Neil Armstrong’s heroic conquest of the moon, can we understand how and why technological truth detection entered the arsenal of the U.S. national security state.4
This book delineates a similarly complex history of the political and legal compromises that American polygraph policies forged. For every thousand tests conducted, the polygraph could potentially produce a staggering 150 false positives. With such an error rate, the lie detector accused the guiltless by the thousands and often caused shell-shocked individuals to confess to crimes they did not commit. Casting suspicion on innocent people was not simply a glitch in the system; it was inherent to the very methodology of polygraph exams. This book takes a fresh look at the atmosphere of suspicion and paranoia often associated with Cold War culture. It shows that in the case of the polygraph, the practice of “security first” was bound to create suspicion and destroy lives. Further, the use of the lie detector to screen government employees, identify spies, or extract intelligence from potential defectors became the subject of repeated congressional investigations. Government agencies, scientists, labor unions, and individual citizens contributed to the debate, which culminated in legislation that prohibited the use of the polygraph by private businesses in 1988. Yet the law exempted polygraph use for purposes of national security. This part of the story reveals a previously unacknowledged entrenchment of “national security” practices in the face of increasingly organized citizen opposition. Far from diminishing its relevance amid such opposition, the lie detector’s bureaucratic success created a legal precedent to shelter a controversial technology from future challenges.
Thus, the history of the polygraph and the history of the American Cold War are mutually illuminating and intertwined. My approach bears out and specifies Daniel Yergin’s claim that the doctrine of national security “was born of technical and political transformations and out of men’s experience and understanding of them. A political and bureaucratic struggle over the postwar military establishment gave the doctrine additional force.”5 From 1945 on, a dangerous world with dangerous new enemies and weapons seemed to call for global, proactive ways to protect the nation, but the implementation of a new strategy became the subject of a political-bureaucratic struggle among federal agencies. The polygraph existed before the national security state; indeed, its ready availability was one of its virtues to anxious policymakers who aimed to create that state. But only after 1945 did the polygraph and the U.S. national security state enter into a permanent, mutually beneficial relationship. The polygraph is therefore a particularly significant artifact of American Cold War history.
While this book mostly focuses on specific events in the post–World War II period, it aims at illuminating broader themes and the ways in which a number of historical trends culminated in U.S. policies after 1945. These themes are—in brief outline—as follows.
Sincerity and Power in the American Imagination
The social history of the polygraph reaches back into early modernity and the creation of western commercial society. It shines light on America’s struggle to define sincerity as the country developed an exuberant, reckless, and risky form of capitalism in the nineteenth century. As inherited differences of social status eroded, writers, philosophers, and scientists in the Anglo-American world began to devise methods of detecting the inauthentic. As Lionel Trilling argued, it was the phenomenon of social mobility that introduced the figure of the villain or trickster in modern English literature and made sincerity—matching inner self and social norms—a middle-class ideal. During the eighteenth century, the English literary world was obsessed with fraud and hoaxes and discussed means to uncover them. A little later, within the crowded urban landscapes of nineteenth-century America, advice literature addressing anxieties about hypocrisy and the threat it posed to Victorian notions of middle-class virtue abounded.6 At the same time, the burgeoning American market economy also suggested advertisement and self-promotion—mastery of the art of appearance—as a useful tool for economic and social advancement. While confidence men appear in the popular imagination of many cultures, historian Walter McDougall declared “hustling” to be the archetypical American activity and Herman Melville’s The Confidence-Man (1857) to be the quintessential American novel. Put differently, legitimate and illegitimate market activity became hard to distinguish in modern America, which opened the door for lie detector advocates to offer yet another marketable service.7
The historiography of American capitalism raises important questions regarding the relationship among democracy, market society, and sincerity, because only in a society that valued individual achievement and maintained a distinction between the private and the public sphere could the choice between truth and lies become a source of individual empowerment. In Victorian England, writers like Thomas Hardy or Oscar Wilde (who famously declared lying a form of art) often wrote about characters with an authentic existence on the margins of middle-class respectability. These characters forged such an existence by pursuing the opposites of sincerity—secrecy, masquerade, reserve, and invention.8 In the more prosaic history of American capitalism and the importance it placed on salesmanship, individuals often struggled to maintain a strict distinction between advertisement and deception. Honesty and sincerity therefore held a precarious place in the American national imagination and in economic practice.
Accusations of hypocrisy have long existed toward world powers whose methods and morals appear to exist in conflict. The founding fathers had struggled to defend themselves against charges of two-facedness coming easily against a nation supposedly based on liberty but tolerant of the institution of slavery.9 In the realm of foreign policy, statesmen and academics in Germany, England, and America fired off mutual charges of hypocrisy when their countries began to compete for global power in the 1890s. The liberal British empire of the Victorian age, so the Germans argued, had acquired its dominance by force, yet its defenders claimed that British supremacy was benevolent since it facilitated global trade. While British writers countered that German Realpolitik was little more than an elaborate justification for naked Machiavellianism, German historian Friedrich Meinecke famously argued that it was the British who practiced “the most effective kind of Machiavellianism, which could be brought by the national Will of power-policy to become unconscious of itself, and to appear (not only to others, but also itself) as being pure humanity, candor and religion.”10 Such accusations were easily transferred to America, the new preponderant global power after the Second World War. Charges of hypocrisy stung many American diplomats, as when it came to explaining Jim Crow practices in the nation’s capital to foreign diplomats.11
By that time, however, the communist tactics of propaganda and infiltration served as a suitable foil to contrast American sincerity with communist deceit. “The Communist Party, USA, has been and is engaged in an all-out war against American freedom,” FBI director J. Edgar Hoover declared in his (ghostwritten) 1958 bestseller Masters of Deceit. “Its tactics of confusion, retreat, advance, infiltration, and hypocrisy are in full play.” Hoover warned of communist “terrorism, espionage, sabotage, lying, cheating.” The defense of American national character would acquire new urgency when U.S. foreign policy attempted to advertise America’s core values and, in the process, define American national identity.12
According to polygraph examiner Gordon Barland, by the early 1990s, polygraphs as a routine investigation tool in law enforcement had spread to fifteen countries other than the United States, and overall fifty-five countries retained some public or private polygraph resources.13 Still, no country came even close in its reliance on the machine. Given the exceptionally wide use of the technology in the United States, it is not surprising that historians have raised the question of whether lie detection reveals something transcendent about the American national character. For example, in his authoritative group biography of the main characters who drove the development of the machine—William Marston, an academic psychologist who ended up as a comic book writer; John Larson, a psychologist-police officer who at the end of his life came to call the machine “Frankenstein’s Monster”; and Leonarde Keeler, the son of a famous poet who made the polygraph his claim to fame—Ken Alder emphatically calls finding out liars “an American obsession.”14 In contrast, since a variety of groups in American society participated on different sides in the debates over the polygraph and national security, this book highlights the conflicting demands Americans made of each other as they negotiated the need for both security and personal freedom. The result was a negotiated compromise that failed to satisfy either proponents or critics of the polygraph.
In contrast to Alder’s broad identification of lie detection with the American character, this study highlights the intense conflicts that the purposes of polygraph tests sparked among citizens and its role in national security policymaking. I want to explain not only why the lie detector became so popular in the United States, but also why it was attacked so enthusiastically at different times. Despite occasional spectacular appearances in celebrity cases, the polygraph has not become the standard expert witness before American courts. Nor did American psychology utilize it on a broad basis during the rise of the “therapeutic ideal” in postwar America, when top psychologists played a major role in government-sponsored efforts to emotionally manage the population.15 After three major investigations, Congress passed the 1988 Employee Polygraph Protection Act, which prohibited private companies from polygraphing applicants and from random testing of current employees. Exempted were companies concerned with national security, as well as national security agencies of the government. Since the polygraph borrowed legitimacy from the discourse of national security, we need to understand the history of this symbiotic relationship from the viewpoint of its supporters and its critics.
Surveillance Technologies and Global Power
As a variety of scholars in the fields of science and technology studies, sociology, literary studies, and the history and philosophy of science have established, the polygraph originated in nineteenth-century psychology, physiology, and criminology. The Victorian Age saw the rise of technologies to map individual appearance and open it to analysis. Accompanying the development of photography, for example, was a hope that the formal portrait would offer, as historian Alan Trachtenberg described it, “surety that persons were knowable in their visage, the image offering a surrogate for face-to-face sociality in an increasingly distended social order.” Artists such as the daguerreotypist Montgomery Simons, who in 1853 created a series of thirty portraits to build an exhaustive display of human emotions, believed that “a pictured face manifested inner-ness.” While the abolitionist Frederick Douglass firmly believed in photography as a means to reveal the human dignity of freedmen after the American Civil War, the white American middle and upper class employed photography to highlight racial and social distinctions. The “mug shot” also defined rather than liberated the individual. Making an early appearance in the history of photography (French authorities began to photograph prisoners in 1841), it became an instrument of surveillance and governance, allowing criminologists to search out types of criminals. Even as Kodak’s affordable photo technology and the introduction of the U.S. Postal Service’s one-penny stamp for postcards allowed millions of Americans to experiment with photographic self-expression at the end of the nineteenth century, the appearance of gruesome lynch photography reminds us that technology could be used to brutally constrict the ability of individuals to define themselves.16
The search for traces of in-born criminality made Victorian criminologists in Europe develop further technological devices to use the body itself, rather than testimony, as a witness. The medical technology that led to the development of the polygraph measured physiological changes in the human body invisible to the eye. Beginning in the 1860s, European physiologists such as Étienne-Jules Marey in France, Vittorio Benussi and Angelo Mosso in Italy, and Frederick Peterson in England developed devices to measure and record blood pressure, pulse rates, and respiration. In the first decade of the twentieth century, Swiss psychologist Carl Jung employed the new galvanometer. It featured an electrode to detect galvanic skin resistance (sweat) by measuring an electric current running through a finger. Jung employed the device in combination with word association tests (first developed by Francis Galton in England). During these tests, the subject would be asked to freely associate based upon words read by the examiner. Jung’s goal in matching the chart of the galvanometer with the speed and content of the stated word associations was to identify emotional pathology—the sick mind. Hence, he mainly tested subjects with a variety of diseases such as epilepsy. This concern with the abnormal mind as a human type was prevalent in much of the early use of lie detection technology such as the galvanometer. Nonetheless, it set the stage for the polygraph to become a means to measure “normal” people and to monitor their behavior, as Geoffrey Bunn has convincingly shown.17
Given that terms such as “criminality” escaped a strictly medical definition, discourse surrounding the detection of certain types of individuals was to a prominent degree socially constructed. This holds true especially for concerns about the female offender, whom criminologists such as Cesare Lombroso or physicians such as Havelock Ellis viewed as uniquely influenced by their physique. To them as to others in the Victorian era, “the female body was associated with nature, passivity, emotionality, and irrationality.” According to Geoffrey Bunn, it was Lombroso’s research to detect female emotions that “led to a search for ordinarily invisible signs of crime within the body.” Only when these physiological assumptions about criminality came under sustained critique by psychologists and social reformers such as Frances Kellor in the 1890s was the search for “criminal types” slowly abandoned. Still, prominent polygraph advocate William Moulton Marston titillated audiences in 1928 with a test of the supposedly varying emotionality of blonde, brunette, and red-headed women. Keeping the gendered agenda of the instruments that led to the development of the polygraph in mind, we need to realize that exerting social power remained a concern when polygraph tests were unleashed on homosexuals, communists, and other marginal groups of people in the twentieth century.18
It was often fear of social disintegration that drove these technological developments and endowed them with cultural significance. We can, for example, see the birth of Victorian detective fiction like Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes stories as an example of cultural fantasies about the power of truth to reaffirm social order. Indeed, Ron Thomas notes that the lie detector might be called “the fulfillment of a dream inspired by nineteenth-century detective fiction.”19 Expanding on the theme of the interrelatedness of science, literature, and technology, Melissa Littlefield argues that crime and science fiction literature throughout the twentieth century advertised the possibilities of lie detection beyond what science could offer. Such literature particularly elided the challenges of interpreting the charts produced by physiological data.20 According to Robert Michael Brain, the interaction between artistic imagination and the oddly symmetric charts of the new laboratory instruments even facilitated the rise of modernism in the fine arts. An intuitive viewing of the inscription of physiological data on paper would, so the hope of avant-garde intellectuals and artists, inspire a new formalist aesthetic. This aesthetic would utilize technological instruments and media such as film as extensions of the human sense organs and forge a new understanding of human nature based on the clues provided by those instruments.21 The penetrating analysis of the human body by recording physiological data thus could be based on pessimism about the effect of modern mass society and inspire utopian visions of what it meant to be human. My study is based on an appreciation of the dynamic interaction between the research that led to the lie detector and the different cultural contexts in which the graphs that the polygraph produced could exert their influence. But in contrast to existing studies, this book focuses on American foreign policy as the site of discourses of the polygraph.
While many scientists of the early twentieth century explored new ways to police populations by mapping and defining the inner life of individuals, a peculiar parallel activity took place: Western policymakers and their advisors mapped out global geography in search for danger spots to be policed more efficiently as well. With Presidents William McKinley and Theodore Roosevelt, U.S. foreign policy attempted to reimagine the global landscape and developed new doctrines of state authority and national security fit for the industrial age and America’s global economic ambitions. For example, the 1907 Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine, in which President Roosevelt unilaterally claimed American police authority in the Caribbean, complemented the American building of the Panama Canal, one of the technological wonders of the modern world. Indeed, the first decades of the twentieth century saw the radical shrinking of western conceptions of time and space, due to modern technologies such as the telegraph, telephone, steamboat, and railroad. These changes inspired the English geographer Halford Mackinder to develop the concept of “geopolitics.” This concept stressed the impact of geography on the global balance of power, but it also highlighted how modern technologies began to strike at that balance. Mackinder argued that the advent of modern communication and transportation technology shrank the globe to a “closed system” of interdependent power relations.22
President Woodrow Wilson was a crucial transitional figure in American geo-strategic thinking. As the British-German war on the Atlantic raged after 1914, Wilson was haunted by the specter of an interdependent world—full of opportunity but also danger—in which modern technology threatened to globalize all conflicts so that no country, even the United States, could stand apart anymore. This view of the globe as a shrunken space laid the intellectual foundation for the domino theory. Popularized by President Dwight D. Eisenhower during the early 1950s, the domino metaphor of conflict suggested that any local conflict could spiral out of control. As a consequence, the domino theory highlighted the need for proactive U.S. policies to prevent a potentially catastrophic chain reaction. Modern technology therefore had distinctly dystopian implications for many policymakers: it established a sense of the impossibility of an unthreatened homeland.23 The interplay between a sense of global threat and a belief in a unique American ability to benevolently police the globe was one major factor that set the stage for the American Cold War.
The Polygraph and the Concept of Cold War
This book aims to provide a narrative of the American Cold War. Historians have, with some notable exceptions, avoided methodological questions about how to conceptualize the compelling yet elusive concept of “the Cold War.” In a recent survey of the historical literature, Anders Stephanson observes that historians too often use the term as an “empty marker of time” with no analytical payoff. Applied as “shorthand for an amorphous epoch of enormous span,” the term confuses rather than clarifies which events of the period between 1945 and 1991 should be termed “Cold War” and what criteria should be used to make that call. For Stephanson, the Cold War was less an objective playing out of events than a narrative of America existing in mortal danger, justifying an offensive national posture and denying legitimacy to Soviet geopolitical interests.24
The ways in which the Cold War was a break with, or a continuation of, older American policy principles remains, in the final analysis, a matter of interpretation. One analytical challenge is that while the Cold War put many American long-term goals—such as a global system of free trade—temporarily on hold, in the minds of U.S. policymakers, it ultimately was meant to serve those ends.25 In addition, the process of how the United States came to assume expansive military, political, and economic obligations was historically contingent. It depended on the sense of global responsibilities that came with America’s unique position of power at the end of a period that had seen two world wars within a generation.26 In short, the American Cold War arose from circumstance but also according to numerous, and at times contradictory, predispositions in American political culture and economy. Because use of the polygraph was in many cases driven by a sense of mortal threat to American values, this book is then a Cold War history and, as in other Cold War histories, circumstances, contingencies, and coincidences matter.
While the concept and narrative of the Cold War came to be used and redefined by non-American actors as well, my book follows Stephanson’s lead in analyzing the Cold War as a narrative that was embedded in American debates. I also agree with Stephanson and other historians that, since most American policymakers grudgingly came to accept the Soviet Union as a fellow great power by the early 1960s, the Cold War as a narrative rapidly lost plausibility among American publics and policymakers.27 As a consequence, this book also investigates the practices that cemented elements of the Cold War after “containment” had lost its hegemonic status as the “privileged American narrative during the Cold War.”28 The polygraph thrived at the beginning of the American conflict with the Soviet Union and came under attack in the early 1960s. The fact that it became a target of persistent criticism, yet still existed in a more limited sphere of “national security” practice, suggests that its history should be understood as part of Cold War history, and that narratives of the powerful lie detector were containment narratives.
I would like to further emphasize that the history of the polygraph as a tool and symbol of the Cold War is consonant with existing approaches to American Cold War history. Historian Melvyn Leffler characterizes U.S. global strategy during and after World War II as, first, the encouragement of the economic and political consolidation of Western Europe; second, the pursuit of a nuclear arms race; and, third, vigorous opposition to allegedly communist nationalism in the Third World. When we abstract from this analysis, we can see that the strategy of containment was based on the perceived need to impose order on a world seen as chaotic—a world in which even the threat of an opponent capable of harnessing human and material resources demanded preparedness to actively intervene anywhere in the world and overwhelm any potential enemy. Based on these assumptions, the U.S. strategist Paul Nitze stated in 1950, “To seek less than preponderant power would be to opt for defeat.”29
The American Cold War worldview can be seen as an inherently technological view: an outlook on the world that demanded constant surveillance, assessment, and intervention through technology. A technological outlook is foundational for ruling foreign populations in modern times. Rule by technology, according to Gyan Prakash, is “an enframing that acts upon and organizes the world so as to make it available as a resource.”30 American methods of rule by technology did not grow evenly. This outlook originated with slavery, as when Southern states introduced numbered passes to identify slaves working outside their home plantation.31 However, the U.S. federal government at first did not match the ability of late nineteenth-century industrial enterprises to systematically collect, store, and assess information to identify citizens. Only after the “colonial laboratory” of the Philippines post-1898—with the creation of a comprehensive surveillance system that utilized (among other things) index cards based on intelligence from photography, fingerprints, and a network of local informants run by the Military Information Division and its affiliated indigenous organizations—did government officers such as Ralph Van Deman proceed to unleash these surveillance techniques on American society at home during World War I. The technological outlook therefore began to erode distinctions between the domestic and foreign realms even before the onset of the struggle with the Soviet Union.32 Although the technological power of the U.S. government grew unevenly, variations of a technological outlook were nevertheless pervasive in the imagination of a settler society bent on conquering a continent with the help of modern technologies such as the railroads.33
However, the worldview of technology competes with rival imperatives, meaning that different groups can make ownership claims to governmental power. For example, after declaring independence in 1947, Indian Hindu nationalists declared the technologically mobilized colonial state their own, claiming correspondence between its newly configured natural and human resources—the “legible” outer sphere—and its ancient, spiritual, inner sphere. Thus, for Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, India viewed through the frame of imperial technology could be transformed into an entity ruled by domestic elites for the benefit of postcolonial Indians, rather than by Westerners for their own benefit.34
The at-times paradoxical relationship between national identity and technology can also be seen in political discussions over the American national security state after 1945. During World War II, the federal government radically expanded its ability to govern the daily lives of citizens and formed new corporatist partnerships with private industries in the name of protecting individual liberty. “By cloaking new obligations to the state in this fusion of liberalism (with its valorization of freedom and equality) and nationalism (with its demand for unity, order, and loyalty), the federal government could expand its power radically without triggering opposition.”35 The controversies over the creation of the national security state—its ever-increasing defense budget, the terrifying development of nuclear technology, and the establishment of opaque bureaucracies such as the National Security Council and the Central Intelligence Agency—were also laden with rhetoric of national identity: the Truman administration justified these measures as a means to protect American values. Only by appropriating the traditional American discourse of freedom and imbuing it with new technological meaning could the Truman administration and its successors justify the new power of the state. Thus, U.S. national security policy attempted to avoid the specter of a “garrison state”—sociologist Harold Lasswell’s vision of totalitarianism, in which an all-powerful civilian-military elite would dominate society.36 American militarization would instead mean mobilization of American human and material resources through corporatist public-private networks, consisting of government agencies and the private defense industry.37
This expansion of the American state during and after World War II led to a paradox: security policy became intensely inward-looking, even as its sphere of action grew global. The wider the reach of U.S. power, the more intensely Americans discussed their national purpose. As a result, public discussions of foreign policy were often driven by partisan politics and vice-versa.38 America’s “global nationalism” assumed the necessity for a global grand strategy to protect what was uniquely American.39 We can observe the impact of globalized domestic politics in the intense, but often unacknowledged, militarization of popular culture and domestic policy debates (from the “War on Poverty” to the “War on Drugs”), which—interrupted by the Vietnam War—underwent a resurgence under President Ronald Reagan in the 1980s. Military power often became imbued with the mythical ability to solve political problems, and “national security” often served as a placeholder for a variety of domestic debates.40 Historians have studied congressional attempts to rein in the empowered executive branch at different times after 1945, but the repeated and often heated controversies about federal polygraph policies have been ignored so far.41
This book shows that discussions about the value or danger of the polygraph were a prominent part of the many debates to define the elusive term “national security” that became a powerful doctrine justifying American state-building during and after the Second World War. As one foreign relations textbook defines it: “U.S. national security is the ability of national institutions to prevent adversaries from using force to harm Americans or their national interests and the confidence of Americans in this capability.”42 National security therefore has physical and psychological connotations. Through the history of the polygraph, this study analyzes the meaning of “national security” as Americans negotiated it (often heatedly) with each other. An analytical focus on national security, Melvyn Leffler succinctly states, “demands that as much attention be focused on how the American government determines its core values as on how it perceives external dangers.”43 Leffler recently summarized his findings thus: “What I had learned was that national security itself was an amorphous notion shaped by external realities, domestic circumstances, and personal perceptions. It meant different things to different people at different times. It was a dynamic concept, always changing, always contentious.”44 This history of the polygraph may serve as a case study of Leffler’s insight. How did polygraph debates express different ideas about American core values? How does the history of the polygraph as a tool of national security transform our understanding of the technological project to create security and protect democracy?
The Polygraph and the Political Power of Measurements
The polygraph lastly illustrates the theme of measurement and the danger inherent in basing national policy on measurable data alone. National security policy had to iron out contradictions and changes and often pursued ad-hoc policies rather than following well-established doctrines. As the political scientist David Campbell reminds us, “The constant (re)writing of national purpose and the objectives of national security policy . . . so that which is contingent and subject to flux is rendered more permanent” is the task of the national security state.45 The polygraph was one technology that promised to measure security and establish an objective, scientific (and therefore fair and democratic) standard for achievable policies. But the question is: What exactly did the polygraph measure? How does a machine measure imponderables such as loyalty to democratic values?
Measurements such as numbers of Soviet troops, missiles, bombers, and so on were highly coveted during the Cold War, partly because they allowed the calculation of risk. In his classic study Strategies of Containment, historian John Lewis Gaddis points out the strategic shift from George Kennan’s conception of limited strong point defense to the comprehensive global policies outlined in security document NSC-68 that took place in the early 1950s. By 1950, after the outbreak of the Korean War, American policy was becoming increasingly based on worst-case scenarios of Soviet threat.46 This shift was due to an increased valuation of risk minimization: U.S. policy came to focus on Soviet military capabilities at least in part because capabilities could be measured more easily than intentions. Without sources of human intelligence inside the Kremlin (at least until the early 1960s), American policymakers often had to guess the intentions of the secretive Kremlin leadership. However, after the development of the U-2 spy plane in 1954, it became easier to measure what the other side was capable of. In fact, both superpowers in the end tended to interpret the adversary’s immense military capabilities as a measure of the other side’s aggressive intentions.47 This book suggests the history of the polygraph is part of the history of risk management in U.S. national security policies.
In addition to risk management, this study also attends to technology as a means for establishing governmental control. As Paul Edwards reveals in his book The Closed World, the strategy of nuclear deterrence led to the development of digital technologies for global surveillance, for example the Distant Early Warning Line, an interconnected system of radar stations in the Arctic region of the Atlantic coast, which NATO installed in 1957. But deterrence also created closed-world discourse. This discourse included “the language, technologies, and practices that together supported the visions of centrally controlled, automated global power.” Under this analytical heading, we can detect a unifying theme in U.S. national security policy: it calculated the predictability of human behavior in game theory, was often driven by worst-case scenarios of global war, and produced cognitive science that modeled human thinking after computer technology.48 The history of the polygraph is part of the history of the American project to create predictability by reducing human conscience to measurable data. In this sense as well, the history of the polygraph is part of Cold War history.
Another finding of this book that contributes to our larger understanding of U.S. national security policy is how a practice that at first was only an improvised, on-the-spot solution became enshrined in practice and eventually turned into established policy. The history of the polygraph therefore suggests the path-dependent character of U.S. Cold War policies.49 Bureaucratic convenience simply trumped science when it came to federal polygraph practices. In this context, my study discusses the way the executive branch of government—especially the CIA—used the polygraph to fight off congressional oversight. By emphasizing its critical contribution to national security, the CIA managed to carve out a sphere of control for itself by claiming the self-regulating, scientific nature of the polygraph as a neutral procedure. This discussion builds on the finding of historian Theodore Porter, who argues that quantitative methods allow American bureaucracies freedom from meddlesome outsiders (especially Congress) by depersonalizing knowledge and power. Using abstract knowledge gained from numbers is a strategy of modern government in the western world that especially resonates with traditional American distrust of elites and central authority. According to Porter, “Objectivity lends authority to officials who have very little on their own.”50 In a broader sense, the polygraph is therefore part of larger cultural forces that created what media theorist Neil Postman called “Technopoly.” To Postman, Technopoly “consists in the deification of technology, which means that the culture seeks its authorization in technology, finds its satisfaction in technology, and takes its orders from technology.” As part of this culture of technology, “Machines eliminate complexity, doubt, and ambiguity” and determine which questions people ask themselves and therefore direct their thinking.51 My study tells the story of one technology that contributed to the larger technological cultures of the twenty-first century, in which issues of national security and personal freedom are still at the forefront of public debates.
My investigation proceeds as follows. Chapter 1 outlines the scientific challenges of establishing sufficiently precise polygraph tests. My hope is that clarifying the underlying methodological issues of the polygraph beforehand facilitates an easier flow of the historical narrative. In chapter 2 I discuss the American researchers who pioneered lie detection technology: Hugo Münsterberg, William M. Marston, John Larson, and Leonarde Keeler. This chapter discusses the context and first use of truth technology in the spectacular 1907 court trial of International Workers of the World leaders, who stood accused of assassinating Idaho governor Frank Steunenberg—a case followed closely by the national press. The chapter discusses the first systematic testing of lie detection technology during World War I. I also analyze how emerging “modern” threats—transnational terrorism, socialist ideology, and border-crossing crime—became the prime target of the lie detector. While one group of lie detector advocates favored a therapeutic use of the technology, its preponderant use (highlighted by sensational press coverage) became the deterrence of threats and the detection of criminals.
In chapter 3 I lay out the introduction of the lie detector in the national security state that American civilians and the military created during World War II. This chapter illustrates the extent of its use—first in prisoner-of-war camps, then in the screening of federal employees for loyalty and security in the initial stages of the Cold War. I explore the role of nuclear weapons development, which laid the basis for a new, invasive protocol of security, and the demands for submission to this protocol from federal employees. This chapter therefore demonstrates the concurrent rise of the U.S. national security state out of the emergency situation of World War II and the deployment of the polygraph by the federal government as an emergency measure, which achieved permanence due to the development of nuclear weapons.
Chapter 4 tracks polygraph controversies in the public sphere during the early Cold War years, with particular emphasis on new fears of totalitarian government methods. The investigations of anticommunist members of Congress (such as Joseph McCarthy and Richard Nixon) hold a prominent place, but the investigative journalism of Dwight Macdonald and other journalists and academics—as well as responses from American citizens—are the focus of this chapter. The analysis highlights the ambiguous position of the polygraph as both a harbinger and a perceived protector from undue governmental power. The main finding of this chapter is that the polygraph added to, rather than subdued, the social anxieties caused by the domestic Cold War in 1950s America.
Chapter 5 builds a larger interpretive and factual frame for the role of national security discourse in relation to the polygraph. It develops the early history of U.S. Cold War policies and the creation of the CIA, which came to embody the new powers of the national security state. The CIA was a secret executive agency that was charged with implementing the strategy of containment while being largely shielded from congressional oversight. In this chapter I illustrate the striking family resemblance of U.S. Cold War strategy, ideology, and narratives with polygraph discourse.
In chapter 6 I track the way the polygraph became integrated into the CIA’s bureaucratic procedures. I conclude that despite attempts to make the polygraph a routine part of security procedures, the technology became embroiled in internal turf wars between professional interrogators, field agents, and security personnel. Bureaucratic needs therefore shaped the use of the technology. Further, this chapter illustrates that the sheer quantity of information produced by the lie detector obscured questions of how to properly assess the “security reliability” of individuals. Agencies such as the CIA could never resolve such questions. While the polygraph became a symbol of the relentless power exuded by federal security agencies, it revealed the inherent weaknesses of bureaucratized security procedures. Just like the polygraph, the CIA relied on reputation to establish credentials as a protector of national security.
In chapter 7 I discuss in detail the debates from the 1950s and 1960s to integrate the polygraph into U.S. nuclear deterrence strategy in order to overcome the stalemate in arms control. Largely confined to social scientists and policy analysts, this debate apparently never reached policymakers themselves. It nevertheless highlights the hopes and limitations of the polygraph’s ability to establish cooperation between the two main nuclear powers—the United States and the Soviet Union—by functioning as a substitute for genuine trust building measures. The main argument of this chapter is that attempts to incorporate the polygraph into nuclear arms control give a strong indication of the limits of technological and game-theoretical solutions to the political conflicts underlying the arms race.
In chapter 8 I follow congressional investigations of the lie detector in the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s. I focus in particular on John Moss and Bella Abzug in the House of Representatives and Sam Ervin in the Senate. This discussion shows that opposition to the polygraph reflected the growing importance of the individual “right to privacy” during and after the 1960s. Dozens of labor union publications and increased coverage by trade journals and within the scientific community drove this opposition. However, this chapter also argues that concern over the propriety and scientific credentials of polygraph technology transcended domestic political battle lines while simultaneously confirming the Cold War consensus that extensive measures against foreign threats were necessary. Lack of agreement on the scientific credentials of the polygraph thus led to a need to borrow ideological credentials from the national security state. This explains the persistence of polygraph tests in the federal government. “National security,” this study concludes, now had the power to trump science and civil rights.
I conclude with an epilogue that highlights the continued relevance of the issues discussed in the preceding chapters. Especially after the attacks of September 11, 2001, “national security” became an even more powerful discourse, undermining political opposition to preemptive military action abroad and invasion of privacy both in the United States and abroad. In this context, “new and improved” ways to detect deception continue to enjoy currency as well. However, I also argue that the paradigm of truth technology seems to have shifted from detection of specific deceptive statements to all-encompassing surveillance of populations with the help of Big Data. Security discourses and practices continue to evolve, but it is my hope that this study of the polygraph and the American Cold War will help to forge a historically grounded discussion of the uses and limits of truth technology.
1. Charles M. Blow, Fire Shut Up in My Bones: A Memoir (Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2014), 203–4.
2. George Shultz, quoted in Don Oberdorfer, “Shultz Backs ‘Voluntary’ Polygraph Tests at State,” Washington Post, April 29, 1988, A4.
3. On this theme see Andrea Friedman, Citizenship in Cold War America: The National Security State and the Possibilities of Dissent (Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2014).
4. Walter A. McDougall, . . . The Heavens and the Earth: A Political History of the Space Age (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1997), 7. For a powerful illustration of the influence of Cold War considerations on science pedagogy, see Christopher J. Phillips, The New Math: A Political History (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2015).
5. Daniel Yergin, Shattered Peace: The Origins of the Cold War and the National Security State (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1977), 193.
6. Lionel Trilling, Sincerity and Authenticity (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1972); Jack Lynch, Detection and Deception in Eighteenth-Century Britain (Burlington: Ashgate, 2008); Karen Haltunen, Confidence Men and Painted Women: A Study of Middle-Class Culture in America, 1830–1870 (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1982).
7. Walter A. McDougall, Freedom Just Around the Corner: A New American History, 1585–1828 (New York: HarperCollins, 2004); Gary Lindberg, The Confidence Man in American Literature (New York: Oxford University Press, 1982); Stephen Mihm, A Nation of Counterfeiters: Capitalists, Con Men, and the Making of the United States (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2007).
8. John Kucich, The Power of Lies: Transgression in Victorian Fiction (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1994). See Oscar Wilde, “The Decay of Lying: An Observation” (1889), http://virgil.org/dswo/courses/novel/wilde-lying.pdf.
9. See David Runciman, Political Hypocrisy: The Mask of Power from Hobbes to Orwell and Beyond (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2008), 74–115.
10. See John Bew, Realpolitik: A History (New York: Oxford University Press, 2016). Meinecke’s book Machiavellianism: The Doctrine of Raison d’Etat and Its Place in Modern History from 1924 is quoted on 159.
11. See Mary L. Dudziak, Cold War Civil Rights: Race and the Image of American Democracy (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2000).
12. J. Edgar Hoover, Masters of Deceit: The Story of Communism in America and How to Fight It (New York: Holt, 1958), 194–95; Laura A. Belmonte, Selling the American Way: U.S. Propaganda and the Cold War (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2008).
13. See Gordon H. Barland, “Foreign Use of the Polygraph—Summary, v. 5.1,” May 25, 1995. Document in author’s possession. Countries with “major” polygraph capabilities, either private or public, were Bosnia, Canada, Croatia, El Salvador, India, Israel, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovenia, South Africa, Taiwan, and Turkey.
14. See Ken Alder, The Lie Detectors: The History of an American Obsession (New York: Free Press, 2007), 271.
15. See Ellen Herman, The Romance of American Psychology: Political Culture in the Age of Experts (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1995).
16. Alan Trachtenberg, “Lincoln’s Smile: Ambiguities of the Face in Photography,” Social Research 67, no. 1 (Spring 2000): 9, 12; Gregory Fried, “True Pictures,” Common-Place 2, no. 2 (January 2002), http://www.common-place.org/; Christian Parenti, The Soft Cage: Surveillance in America From Slavery to the War on Terror (New York: Basic Books, 2004), 37; James West Davidson, “They Say”: Ida B. Wells and the Reconstruction of Race (New York: Oxford University Press, 2009), 1–5.
17. See Geoffrey C. Bunn, “The Hazards of the Will to Truth: A History of the Lie Detector” (Ph.D. diss., York University, 1998), 41–43.
18. Geoffrey C. Bunn, The Truth Machine: A Social History of the Lie Detector (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2011), 51–93, quotes on 53, 65. On Marston’s test of women, see 156. Bunn’s account ends at the time of World War II and neglects to explain why the polygraph prevailed after criminology, psychology, and the popular press turned against it after the 1930s.
19. R. Thomas, Detective Fiction and the Rise of Forensic Science (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998), 22.
20. Melissa M. Littlefield, The Lying Brain: Lie Detection in Science and Science Fiction (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2011).
21. Robert Michael Brain, The Pulse of Modernism: Physiological Aesthetics in Fin-de-Siècle Europe (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2015). Brain notes that the new physiological aesthetics were part of the larger transformation of western understandings of human nature in the nineteenth century. This theme is explored more broadly in Barry Sanders, Unsuspecting Souls: The Disappearance of the Human Being (Berkeley: Counterpoint Press, 2009).
22. Stephen Kern, The Culture of Time and Space, 1880–1918 (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1983). Mackinder presented his argument about the crucial importance of the Eurasian heartland before World War I. See Halford J. Mackinder, “The Geographical Pivot of History,” Geographical Journal 23, no. 4 (April 1904); he developed it in more detail in his book Democratic Ideals and Reality (1919; New York: Holt, 1942); the reference to closed geography is on 29.
23. See Frank Ninkovich: Modernity and Power: A History of the Domino Theory in the 20th Century (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1994); Frank Ninkovich, The Wilsonian Century: U.S. Foreign Policy since 1900 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1999).
24. See Anders Stephanson, “Cold War Degree Zero,” in Uncertain Empire: American History and the Idea of the Cold War, ed. Joel Isaac and Duncan Bell (New York: Oxford University Press, 2012), 19–50, quotes on 21.
25. See Perry Anderson, American Foreign Policy and Its Thinkers (New York: Verso, 2015), 55; Thomas J. McCormick, America’s Half-Century: United States Foreign Policy in the Cold War and after (1989; reprint, Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1995).
26. See John A. Thompson, A Sense of Power: The Roots of America’s Global Role (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2015).
27. For a useful discussion of the idea of a “High Cold War” that ended in 1963, see Andrew J. Bacevich, The New American Militarism: How Americans Are Seduced by War (2005; New York: Oxford University Press, 2013), 177–79. Alternatively, see the anthology of essays in Lorenz Lüthi, ed., Regional Cold Wars in Europe, East Asia, and the Middle East: Crucial Periods (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2015). These essays collectively argue for four moments in which the international Cold War system was transformed, namely 1953–1956, 1965–1969, 1978–1983, and 1986–1989. While highlighting the regional peculiarities of different Cold War subsystems and the importance of a variety of actors, this volume still shows the usefulness of the systemic concept of “Cold War” to describe the international system after World War II.
28. Alan Nadel, Containment Culture: American Narratives, Postmodernism, and the Atomic Age (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1995), 2.
29. Melvyn P. Leffler, A Preponderance of Power: National Security, the Truman Administration, and the Cold War (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1992), 446.
30. Gyan Prakash, Another Reason: Technology and the Imagination of Modern India (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1999), 159. For a similar approach see James C. Scott, Seeing Like a State: How Certain Schemes to Improve the Human Condition Have Failed (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1998).
31. Parenti, Soft Cage, 13–32.
32. Alfred W. McCoy, Policing America’s Empire: The United States, The Philippines, and the Rise of the Surveillance State (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 2009); on the general theme of the interpenetration of domestic and colonial U.S. state building after 1898, see Alfred W. McCoy and Francisco A. Scarano, eds., Colonial Crucible: Empire in the Making of the Modern American State (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 2009).
33. See Michael Adas, Dominance by Design: Technological Imperatives and America’s Civilizing Mission (Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2006); Michael Adas, Machines as the Measure of Men: Science, Technology, and Ideologies of Western Dominance (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1989).
34. See Prakash, Another Reason, 178–200.
35. James T. Sparrow, Warfare State: World War II Americans and the Age of Big Government (New York: Oxford University Press, 2011), 12. For the term “corporatism” to analyze the role of so-called functional groups and their role in shaping U.S. foreign policy since the 1920s, see Michael J. Hogan, “Corporatism,” in Explaining the History of American Foreign Relations, ed. Michael J. Hogan and Thomas G. Paterson, 2nd ed. (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2004), 137–48.
36. Michael J. Hogan, A Cross of Iron: Harry S. Truman and the Origins of the National Security State, 1945–1954 (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1998).
37. Aaron Friedberg, In the Shadow of the Garrison State: America’s Anti-Statism and Its Cold War Grand Strategy (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2000). While Friedberg emphasizes the limits to American national security statism, Sparrow underscores its radical expansion during World War II.
38. Recent works that emphasize the crucial role of partisan politics in Cold War policy debates and decisions include Robert David Johnson, Congress and the Cold War (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2006); Julian E. Zelizer, Arsenal of Democracy: The Politics of National Security—From World War II to the War on Terrorism (New York: Basic Books, 2009); Campbell Craig and Fredrik Logevall, America’s Cold War: The Politics of Insecurity (Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2009).
39. The term “global nationalism” is borrowed from John Fousek, To Lead the Free World: American Nationalism and the Cultural Roots of the Cold War (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2000).
40. See Michael S. Sherry, In the Shadow of War: The United States since the 1930s (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1995); Tom Engelhardt, The End of Victory Culture: Cold War America and the Disillusioning of a Generation (New York: Basic Books, 1995).
41. Recent studies of Congress that do not mention polygraph investigations include David M. Barrett, The CIA and Congress: The Untold Story from Truman to Kennedy (Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, 2005); Johnson, Congress and the Cold War; Kathryn S. Olmsted, Challenging the Secret Government: The Post-Watergate Investigations of the CIA and FBI (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1996).
42. Sam C. Sarkesian, John Allen Williams, and Stephen J. Cimbala, U.S. National Security: Policymakers, Processes, and Politics (Boulder: Lynne Rienner, 2008), 4.
43. Melvyn P. Leffler, “National Security,” in Explaining the History of American Foreign Relations, ed. Hogan and Paterson, 126. See this essay for further literature on the topic.
44. Melvyn P. Leffler, Safeguarding Democratic Capitalism: U.S. Foreign Policy and National Security, 1920–2015 (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2017), 24.
45. David Campbell, Writing Security: United States Foreign Policy and the Politics of Identity (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1992), 30, 31.
46. John Lewis Gaddis, Strategies of Containment: A Critical Appraisal of American National Security Policy during the Cold War, rev. ed. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2005), esp. 82.
47. See Raymond L. Garthoff, Soviet Leaders and Intelligence: Assessing the American Adversary during the Cold War (Washington, DC: Georgetown University Press, 2015), 97.
48. Paul N. Edwards, The Closed World: Computers and the Politics of Discourse in Cold War America (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1996), 7.
49. On the concept of path dependency and its usefulness for history, see John Lewis Gaddis, The Landscape of History: How Historians Map the Past (New York: Oxford University Press, 2002), 80–81.
50. Theodore M. Porter, Trust in Numbers: The Pursuit of Objectivity in Science and Public Life (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1995), 8.
51. Neil Postman, Technopoly: The Surrender of Culture to Technology (New York: Vintage Books, 1992), 71, 93, 127.