United States Army Intelligence and Security Command

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.



Model of US Army Field Station Berlin

Model of US Army Field Station Berlin: Beginning in 1961, the Army built what was often described as a “Disney-like” structure atop the Teufelsberg site in Berlin.


Wood Carving of Cobra

Wood Carving of Cobra: The cobra was adopted as the symbol of the 7th Radio Research Field Station, Udorn, Thailand (1966-1976). It is carved from a single piece of teak wood and has a separate base that reads “Welcome to the 7th RRFS.”



AN/TRD-23A: Operator’s Console from the AN/TRD 23A. Fielded in the 1960s, the AN/TRD-23 High Frequency Radio Direction-Finding System was used to measure azimuth bearings of radio signals in the 1.5 to 20 megahertz frequency range. A shelter typically housed two independent DF operator consoles and a communications console.


Guidon of the 73d Signal Company

Guidon of the 73d Signal Company: In the mid-1950s, the 73d Signal Company, 72d Signal Battalion was located at the Army Electronic Proving Ground at Fort Huachuca, Arizona, where it provided electronic warfare support to an armored division. In 1963 the noncommunications jamming and accompanying support missions were transferred from the Chief Signal Officer to the Chief, Army Security Agency.

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Site Last Reviewed/Cleared/Updated on July 27th, 2012