National Committee for a Free Europe

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The National Committee for a Free Europe, later known as Free Europe Committee, was an American anti-communist organization, founded on March 17, 1949, in New York, which worked for the spreading of American influence in Europe and to oppose the Soviet one. The committee was founded by Allen Dulles, a member of the newly created American Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), in conjunction with Dewitt Clinton Poole. Early board members included General Dwight D. Eisenhower, Lucius D. Clay, Cecil B. DeMille, and Henry Luce.[1] From 1951–52 Charles Douglas Jackson served as its President. The organization created and oversaw the anti-communist broadcast service Radio Free Europe.[2] CIA subsidies to the Free Europe Committee ended in 1971 which caused restructuring to its operations.[3]

The Free Europe Committee sent leaflets with balloons from West Germany to the Eastern Bloc countries. Each of the balloons was able to drop 100,000 leaflets. Initially a small cannon was used to cut cords, but as a result of propaganda claiming them to be lethal, a new type of balloon with a timer and motor-powered razor blades was developed.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Weiner, Tim: "Legacy of Ashes", page 36. Doubleday, 2007.
  2. ^ Mihail Bumbes - Un simbol: Europa Libera -Evenimentul Zilei Nr. 4989, 20 Februarie 2007
  3. ^ A Look Back… The National Committee for Free Europe, 1949
  4. ^ Hearst Magazines (February 1956). Popular Mechanics. Hearst Magazines. p. 151. ISSN 0032-4558. 

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