It was allegedly circulated among senior White House officials, and one of the jokes even made it to then-President Ronald Reagan himself, according to The Daily Mail.
The joke goes as follows: “An American tells a Russia that the United States is so free that he can stand outside the White House and yell “to hell with Ronald Reagan. The Russian replies: ‘That’s nothing, I can stand outside the Kremlin and yell “to hell with Ronald Reagan too!”
Another joke in the files gives an indication of the domestic unpopularity of the former General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, who presided over the empire’s collapse in 1991.
It concerns two men waiting in a line to buy vodka.
The first man says: “I’ve had enough, save my place, I’m going to shoot Gorbachev.” Two hours later he returns to claim his place in line.
His friend asks “Did you get him?” and the man replies: “No: the line there was even longer than the line here.”
When his vice-president George H.W. Bush spoke at the agency three years later, he figured he would also need to lead with a joke. So he chose this, clearly labeling it under “humor” in his speaking notes.
I always struggle to introduce something humorous when I give speeches to the outside groups. My only suggestion on a subject like this one is that you might one to use the all-but-fool-proof joke that General Walter tells about Cuba. He notes that the Soviet and Cuban activities you describe here have had the ironic result that Cuba is now the biggest country in the world; its bureaucracy is in Havana, the government is in Moscow, the army is in Africa, and the population is in Florida.
Got any more jokes to add to the list?
*Jokes that the CIA declassified are now all over the internet.