(Washington Times) -- Since its inception, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has earned a reputation for independence and incorruptibility.
The Bureau has done stellar work over the years enforcing federal laws, nabbing bad guys, infiltrating the Ku Klux Klan, and has benefited from positive media coverage and popular television and film portrayals.
In the 1930s, newspapers thrilled readers with accounts of the G-Men (Government Men) taking down career criminals such as John Dillinger and George “Machine Gun” Kelly. It was Kelly who gave the agents the nickname “G-men.” The gangster was cornered in Memphis in 1933 by FBI agents, and allegedly shouted with his hands up, “Don’t shoot, G-Men.”
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In 1959, “The Untouchables” TV show debuted on ABC, starring Robert Stack. It ran until 1963. From 1965 to 1974, Efrem Zimbalist Jr., fresh from a star-making run on the L.A. detective drama “77 Sunset Strip,” anchored the hit ABC series “The FBI.” The closing sequence has him driving a classy new Mustang convertible — as cool as it got back then.