Cold War: The Global Reach


The end of World War II did not fulfill the promise of international cooperation. The Soviet Union, under the leadership of Joseph Stalin, suppressed democratic aspirations of nations within its occupied areas. In addition, Soviet-sponsored political movements attempted to subvert free nations. In response, the United States pursued a policy of containment.

The onset of the Cold War substantially changed the nature of the Army intelligence mission, which for the first time became a peacetime priority. The newly established Army Security Agency was a worldwide command responsible for communications intelligence and communications security. Its field stations literally encircled the globe and were located on four continents. The most advanced outpost in Europe was located 105 miles behind the Iron Curtain and built atop the Teufelsberg—“Devil’s Hill”—an artificial mound built from the rubble of the World War II bombed German capital of Berlin. The largest US Army Security Agency field station in Southeast Asia was the 7th Radio Research Field Station. The ASA also provided support to tactical commanders during contingencies and exercises. Direction-finding of enemy transmitters was one of ASA’s principal collection tools. In 1955, ASA also began to assume responsibility for electronic warfare, formerly a Signal Corps mission.