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David MacMichael is a former Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) analyst. A ten-year veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, he was a counter-insurgency expert in South-East Asia for four years.[1] He also served as an analyst for the National Intelligence Council from 1981-1983. MacMichael graduated with an MA and Ph.D. in History from the University of Oregon.

MacMichael resigned from the CIA in July 1983 because he felt the Agency was misrepresenting intelligence for political reasons.[2] His public resignation from the Agency gave credence and notability to his vocal indictment of the Reagan Administration's policy toward Central America.[3] He was considered the "key witness" in Nicaragua v. United States. The case was heard in 1986 before the International Court of Justice, which ruled that the United States had violated international law by supporting the Contras in their war against the Nicaraguan government and by mining Nicaragua's harbors. MacMichael also testified in front of Congress on this matter.[4]

A former investigator for the Christic Institute, he was an outspoken critic of the Institute's reliance on conspiracy theory, arguing that the Institute "was eager, perhaps overeager, to demonstrate that this enterprise [a "secret team" of conservatives][5] was responsible for everything since Cain slaying Abel."[6] In July 2005, he testified at a special joint hearing of Congressional and Senate Democrats about the consequences of the Plame affair.

MacMichael is a member of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS), founding member of Association of National Security Alumni and the Association for Responsible Dissent,[7] and an outspoken critic of the Iraq War and the Bush Administration. He has participated in six documentary films from 1988-2003.[1] Journalist John Pilger has described him as a "CIA renegade."[8]


  1. ^ Jonathan Steele, "The CIA man who turned to the Nicaraguans / Profile of David MacMichael," The Guardian (9 January 1985).
  2. ^ Philip Taubman, "In from the Cold and Hot for Truth," New York Times (11 June 1984) p. B6.
  3. ^ See Philip Taubman, "In from the Cold and Hot for Truth," New York Times (11 June 1984) p. B6; "Moynihan: data lacking on Nicaragua arms traffic," Christian Science Monitor (14 June 1984) p. 2; "Nicaragua, Pro and Contra" New York Times (18 June 1984) p. A18; Joan Edwards, "Reagan's charges 'total untruths,' ex-CIA man says," Globe and Mail (29 June 1984).
  4. ^ Shirley Christian, "Nicaragua's American Lawyers Prepare Case," New York Times (8 September 1985) p.23; Associated Press, "Ex-CIA Aide Testifies in The Hague," New York Times (14 September 1985) p. 3.
  5. ^ See The Secret Team
  6. ^ Felicity Barringer, "Giving Law Teeth (and Using Them on Lawyers)," New York Times (17 March 1989) p. B4.
  7. ^ "Ex-CIA spies set up group fighting to ban covert action" Toronto Star (27 November 1987) p. A3.
  8. ^ John Pilger, "Having a fun time in New Orleans: the latest recruits (sorry, 'alumni') of latter-day Reaganism," New Statesman (13 November 1998).

See also

  • Nicaragua vs. United States Details MacMichael testimony at the trial.


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