House Leaders Back OSS Congressional Gold Medal Act

WASHINGTON, July 15, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The following is being released by The OSS Society:

The chairmen and ranking members of the Foreign Affairs Committee, Rep. Ed Royce and Rep. Eliot Engel; the Armed Services Committee, Rep. Buck McKeon and Rep. Adam Smith; and the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, Rep. Mike Rogers and Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger, have announced their support for the Office of Strategic Services Congressional Gold Medal Act (H.R. 3544). 

In a July 7th letter, they asked their colleagues to "join us in co-sponsoring H.R. 3544, legislation to award the Congressional Gold Medal to the veterans of the Office of Strategic Services, the predecessor to the Central Intelligence Agency, for their exceptional and indispensable service against Nazi Germany during World War II." They quoted OSS founder General William J. Donovan, a World War I Medal of Honor recipient, who said OSS personnel "performed some of the bravest acts of the war." 

They cited the role played by the OSS "as the basis for the modern-day American intelligence and special operations communities, including the CIA, Navy SEALs, U.S. Army Special Forces, Air Force Special Operations Command, and the Marines Special Operations Command." They also recognized several of the more prominent members of the OSS, including American icon Julia Child, Supreme Court Justice Arthur Goldberg, Pulitzer-prize winning historian Arthur Schlesinger Jr., Ralph Bunche (the first African-American to win the Nobel Peace Prize), and four Directors of Central Intelligence: William Casey, William Colby, Allen Dulles, and Richard Helms.

Their letter concluded by saying that "it is time for the extraordinary members of the OSS to be collectively recognized for their tremendous achievements in the global defense of freedom during one of the most dangerous times in world history."

The OSS continues to shape our present-day intelligence community. When Admiral William McRaven, USN, the current Commander of the U.S. Special Operations Command, received the William J. Donovan Award from The OSS Society on October 26, 2013, he said, "the OSS is back." At the same ceremony, John Brennan, the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, said, " ... the attacks of 9/11 brought the two main branches of OSS back together. Intelligence officers and special operators are working hand-in-hand to bring the fight to our adversaries. This makes the history of the OSS more relevant than ever to the women and men protecting our nation."


SOURCE The OSS Society, Inc.