Weekly Intelligence Notes #25-01
24 June 2001

WIN #25-01 dated 24 June 2001

Weekly Intelligence Notes (WINs) are produced by Roy Jonkers for non-profit educational uses only. Associate editor Don Harvey contributed to this WIN.

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TROFIMOFF TRIAL TESTIMONY -- Former KGB CI general Oleg Kalugin testified that he had spent several hours with George Trofimoff, the former US Army civilian chief of the Joint Interrogation Center, at an Austrian resort some 20 years ago, discussing espionage requirements. Kalugin said that the KGB considered Trofimoff a most valuable agent. Kalugin told the jury he had supervised hundreds of agents around the globe but personally knew only the best. He met with less than a dozen agents -- and one of them, he said, was Trofimoff. He said he had advised Trofimoff that "he could do better," and warned him about divorcing his American wife to marry an 18-year old German nurse. He thought it might cost him his security clearance. (Trofimoff did it anyway). According to Kalugin, Trofimoff's productivity improved dramatically after their meeting -- and so did Trofimoff's stipend. Looking at him court, Kalugin noted "He looks almost the same. He's lost some weight. He's older. But we all are." As a side comment, Kalugin was reported not to be pleased to have to testify. He had to be subpoenaed.
            In previous testimony a British intelligence officer (John Doe) connected Trofimoff to documents smuggled out by Vasili Mitrokhin, the KGB archivist who collected notes on KGB spies from 1972 to 1984 (Ref: The Sword and the Shield: The Mitrokhin Archive and the Secret History of the KGB [1999]). The British officer, who had translated Mitrokhin's notes after the latter defected to Great Britain (in 1992), testified about the spy known by the KGB aliases of "Markiz," "Konsul" and "Antey" - whose documents were shown all the way up to the Russian prime minister and Ministry of Defense. The officer said the spy not only provided more than 80 volumes of top secret documents but also had seven volumes on himself in the KGB archives. One volume is made up of about 400 pages. "The more volume an agent has, the busier he's been," the British intelligence officer said. Numerous notations indicated that "Markiz" was an official member of the 66th group of American military intelligence and recruited by a clergyman. Trofimof, 74, was a (reservist) member of the Army's 66th Military Intelligence Brigade, while serving as the civilian chief of the Army's operations at the Joint Interrogation Center in Nuremberg, Germany.
            Earlier in the trial the jury was shown six hours of secretly videotaped conversations between Trofimof and an undercover FBI agent in which Trofimof detailed 25 years of spying for the Russians with the help of Igor Vladimirovich Susemihl, a childhood friend who served as the equivalent of a cardinal in the Russian Orthodox church. Trofimoff has denied all charges.(Jonkers) (Assoc.Press//Wash Post 20Jun01, p. A28.-- The Tampa Tribune 20 June 2001 p.1 - courtesy Frank Durr)

TERRORIST PLOT FOILED IN INDIA -- An alleged plot to blast the United States Embassy in New Delhi was reportedly foiled by the Special Cell of the Delhi Police in coordination with the Indian Intelligence Bureau . Two suspected terrorists were arrested, including a Sudanese national, and quantities of high- intensity explosives were discovered. . Police sources said the two men were sent by Osama bin Laden's organization - which was behind the attacks on U.S. missions in Somalia, Egypt and Sudan - to carry out a devastating attack on the U.S. Embassy here. ( http://www.indiaserver.com/thehindu/2001/06/16/stories/0116000c.htm) (courtesy T. Newcomb, MW-AFIO)

ALERT IN YEMEN -- A group of suspects have been arrested in Yemen for plotting to kill FBI and US Navy personnel investigating the bombing last year of the destroyer USS Cole. The suspects were believed to be planning a suicide bombing attack against the American Embassy in Sana, the capital of Yemen, to kill the investigators. The FBI announced that the agency was reacting to concrete information about the plot, and the investigators were withdrawn from Yemen. US forces in the entire area are on alert.
            The reported plot was the latest turn in an investigation that has been characterized by early breakthroughs but has since failed to provide American and Yemeni officials with the hard evidence on core responsibility. Osama bin Laden, the FBI's most wanted terrorist, has been portrayed as a prime suspect from the start.
            At least a dozen suspects have been arrested in connection with the Cole attack, and six had been scheduled for trial in Yemen. But the FBI pressured the Yemen government to defer the trial as it sought to get to the heart of the operation. Among those facing trial are a Yemeni man suspected of importing the fiberglass skiff used in the attack and several others who confessed to providing the two suicide bombers with false identity documents, a truck and other logistical help. (Jonkers) (New York Times June 19, 2001//C. Marquis)


CIA INSPECTOR GENERAL REPORT -- Just before his departure in January of this year CIA Inspector General L. Britt Snider wrote an internal report with critiques of Agency procedures, now reported in the press, presumably leaked. After noting that the agency was generally in good shape and that morale was high, Snider focused on three basic areas where improvement was needed:

(1) Management -- He noted "the relative lack of centralized management and control over resources.... It is often impossible to know where money is and how it is actually being spent." This not only impedes efficiency and accountability but also makes it more difficult to justify the need for additional resources. The problem with asking the White House and Congress for more money is that the agency has failed to show "it has done all it can on its own to manage and conserve its resources.. . . And at this juncture I think it is a long way from being able to do so."

(2) The Information Revolution -- "Unless the Agency can continue to add value to what customers are increasingly able to do for themselves, their reliance upon the Agency's output is going to diminish...[and] our ability to influence the decision-making process is apt to erode over time." To maintain its edge, the CIA must harness technology currently in use in the private sector, Mr. Snider said, noting the recent creation of the CIA technology center known as In-Q-Tel. He described the semiprivate office as having an "uncertain" probability of success.

(3) Security Policy -- In comments that run against the grain of most conventional thinking about security policy, Snider proposed a selective relaxation of Agency security requirements. "The numerous requirements placed upon employees for security or suitability reasons, e.g., recurring polygraph examinations, psychological testing, annual financial disclosures,... ought to be reconsidered," he wrote. "While these requirements may still make sense for the clandestine service or employees otherwise posted overseas, continuing to apply them indiscriminately to the Agency population as a whole (many of whom never leave the Washington area) seems debatable to me." (Jonkers) (WashTimes 20June01, p.4//Gertz) (Secrecy News 20 June 01) (http://www.fas.org/irp/cia/product/snider.html)

NSA HONORS FOUR CRYPTOLOGISTS -- For the third consecutive year, the National Security Agency inducted into its Hall of Honor yesterday cryptologists who played a significant role in the spy agency's history. The four honorees joined 11 cryptographic giants celebrated on the wall at the National Cryptologic Museum. For the first time, three of the honorees -- Mahlon E. Doyle, Howard C. Barlow and John E. Morrison -- are still alive, a break with the agency's practice of honoring only those who are deceased. The fourth honoree, the agency's foremost linguist, Sydney Jaffe, died in 1972 after working for more than three decades for the agency.
"It's hard for us to talk about what we do," NSA Director Lt Gen. Hayden noted after unveiling the plaques. "This agency has a wonderful heritage that we want to build on . . . It means an awful lot to be able to honor these individuals." (Jonkers) (Balt.Sun 15 June01 //L. Sullivan)

FOREIGN BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT CAPABILITIES SURVEY -- The US has been, and must be, concerned about the nuclear space (missile) threat. Current capabilities by nations cited as "rogue" threats do not seem warrant a limited space missile defense. But if the nuclear space/missile threat to the US appears to be years away, an effective space/ missile defense is years away too -- and requires heavy immediate investment of talent and funding. Massive US reprisal is a useful rational deterrent, but miscalculation. miscommunication and emotional (suicidal) irresponsibility (that may well be caused by our policies) are rife in this vale of tears, and US defense planners must plan for all eventualities. The current situation is reflected in this NBC (open source "intelligence") report.
            According to the report, only one missile system currently being developed by a foreign nation has the capability to reach US territory in the near future. Of the five states usually mentioned in discussions justifying limited missile defense programs, Iraq, Libya, Pakistan, Iran and North Korea (three secular Islamic states, one religious Islamic state and one communist bad boy -- or three pip-squeaks and two small states), only North Korea has what can be called by any stretch of the imagination an "advanced" missile development program. North Korea's Taepo-Dong 2 missile, still under development, would have the range to strike the United States but only at Alaska's thinly populated western edge, or under the most pessimistic assessments, the city of Anchorage. While it would be the first missile strike on U.S. soil, it would almost certainly be met by a devastating U.S. counterstrike that would destroy the attacker and do little damage to U.S. strategic interests. In addition, only North Korea and Pakistan have nuclear weapons. Of these two, only Pakistan is believed to have successfully built nuclear warheads. While U.S. intelligence believes North Korea has built one or two nuclear weapons, there is no evidence that it has built missile warheads.
            The five countries' missile development programs are hindered by other limitations, such as:

            (1) None has fielded a missile with a solid rocket engine or even tested such an engine in flight. Each uses liquid fuel engines, which require hours and in some cases days to load and fire. A solid rocket engine can be lighted and fired within in minutes. 

            (2) None of the states have extensive missile-launch facilities or even missile-development facilities. North Korea's facility on the Sea of Japan is limited to a single, unprotected launch pad and nearby assembly building, connected by a dirt road. 

            (3) None have the industrial capability to build even moderately large numbers of missiles.

            BOTTOMLINE   North Korea's Taepo Dong-2, the most advanced missile in development by any of the five states, has yet to be fired from the Koreans' rudimentary missile-test facility. Under the most extreme assessments, the missile would have a range of 3,600 miles when fielded, U.S. intelligence officials say. At that 3,600-mile range, it could strike as far east as Anchorage. If its range is at the low end of estimates 2,400 miles it could strike only the westernmost islands of Alaska's sparsely populated Aleutian chain. The Taepo-Dong 2 would need a range of more than 4,800 miles to strike the U.S. mainland, and somewhat less to hit Hawaii.
            No other nation on the list has fielded a missile with a range greater than 900 miles, according to U.S. officials. Pakistan has the Ghauri missile, which it bought from North Korea to defend itself against its primary local enemy, India. Iran has yet to test any missile with a range greater than 600 miles, and is primarily concerned with hostile neighbors Iraq and Afghanistan. Libya has only old Scud-B missiles with ranges of 180 miles, and is a non-entity. Iraq is covered by a billion-dollar space, air and ground intelligence coverage blanket, and is limited by U.N. sanctions to missiles with ranges no greater than 90 miles. Although Baghdad is asserted to have hidden Scud missiles from weapons inspectors, none would have ranges greater than 540 miles.

           MISSILE SUMMARYIran (Scud C: 300 miles, Status -- deployed; Shehab-3: 600 miles, Status -- tested ; Shehab-4: 900 miles, Status -- in development.) Distance to US -- 5,400 miles (Alaska), 7,200 miles (Mainland)
Libya (Scud B: 180 miles, Status -- deployed) Distance to US -- 7,200 miles (Alaska), 9,000 miles (Mainland)
Iraq (Ababil-100: 60 miles, Status -- deployed; al-Samoud: 90 miles, Status -- tested; al-Hussein: 360 miles, Status -- forbidden, possibly hidden; al-Abbas: 540 miles, Status -- forbidden, possibly hidden)
Distance to US -- 5,400 miles (Alaska), 7,800 miles (Mainland)
North Korea (Scud B: 180 miles, Status -- deployed ; Scud C: 300 miles, Status -- deployed; No Dong: 600 miles, Status -- tested ; Taepo Dong 1: 900+ miles, Status -- tested ; Taepo Dong2: 3,600 miles, Status -- in development) Distance to US -- 2,400 miles (Alaska), 4,800 miles (Mainland)
Pakistan (Shaheen: 180 miles, Status -- deployed; Tarmuk: 180 miles, Status -- deployed ; Ghauri: 900 miles, Status -- deployed)
(Jonkers) (MSNBC.com// June 19, 2001 /// Robert Windrem, NBC News)

"COVERT" ACTION -- THE SADDAM HUSSEIN OVERTHROW -- Another lesson on how not to institute a covert action aimed at overthrowing a despot was played out in the press recently. It began with a page one story in March in a leading West Coast paper denouncing in not-subtle-at-all terms the leader/spokesman of the Iraqi National Congress, the US-chosen group to overthrow Saddam Hussein. Ahmad Chalabi, the INC leader, and the INC in general, was described as having "no meaningful support" in the region and as being seen as the gang that couldn't shoot straight. Next came a defense of Chalabi in a Washington paper by a distinguished columnist calling the March attack "character assassination" and pointing out that Chalabi was the bete noire of the CIA because he publicized the agency's gross failures in Iraq. (NOTE: It is difficult to understand why Chalabi is accused of publicizing the near simultaneous Baghdad roll-up of two CIA counter-Hussein operations since the disasters were widely reported in the press at the time.) In June the Washington press reported an audit of the expenditures of the INC to date. The audit was expected to hold up plans to build a satellite transmitter in northern Iraq (predominantly Kurdish and protected by US aircraft from Turkey), to send teams of INC operatives into Iraq to collect information on Saddam's regime, and to distribute humanitarian aid.

            The latest press report on the possibly/ uniquely/ unbelievably/ presumably covert action cited the State Department's notification to Congress [which began this affair with a $97 million allocation to State to support the Iraqi opposition] that it plans to release an additional $6 million to the INC to cover continuing administrative costs and to facilitate the exile group's efforts to start broadcasting television programs by satellite into Iraq. The press is confusing on how much money the INC has received thus far, but it has offices in London, Washington, Damascus and Tehran with expenses of about $2 million a month.

            Reportedly, the group has so little credibility in the Arab world and in Turkey that all but one of the states bordering Iraq have made it clear to State that the group will not be allowed to operate out of their territories. In Iran's case, the INC spending of US dollars in Tehran is probably unique as an instance of US/Iranian cooperation. Of course, Iran has been backing its own anti-Hussein force for years [and one that has actually launched military operations, albeit not terribly successfully, inside Iraq]. The one thing that can be said about this current effort to unseat Hussein is that it is simpler than its predecessors in the overthrow campaign; Saddam's agents now only have to read English language newspapers to remain current with the state of play. ["state of play" is a deliberate description since the US efforts make it look like a game, only using real instead of play money.] (Harvey) ( LA Times 19 Mar '01, p.1; Wash Post 8 Apr '01, p. B7 by Jim Hoagland; Wash Times 11 Jun '01, p.11; Wash Post 14 Jun '01, p. 44)

CHINA COMMUNIST PARTY LEADER LOOKS TO FUTURE -- After 80 years, CCP leader Jiang reportedly discussed alternative political leadership solutions for China, allegedly saying -- "There are also problems with presidential systems such as the United States. The president may be elected by the people. But he proceeds to appoint cronies to high positions." Jiang said he favored the elitist system model, as in Singapore and Malaysia. He added the future of reform in China would develop in the form of the popular selection -- under the criteria and supervision of the CCP -- of well-educated, elitist elements to fill senior posts. (Jonkers) (<http://taiwansecurity.org/News/2001/CNN-061301.htm> /Willy Wo-Lap Lam)


NIPC ADVISORY -- National Infrastructure Protection Center (NIPC) Advisory(01-013) "Buffer Overflow Vulnerability In Microsoft's Internet Information Services (IIS) 4.0 and 5.0. "The NIPC and FedCIRC are jointly issuing this advisory to highlight the vulnerability addressed in Microsoft Security Bulletin MS01-033. Attackers can remotely gain SYSTEM LEVEL ACCESS (root) on any computer running Microsoft's IIS Web server software. System-level access allows a user full access to the server, so as to install malicious code, run programs, reconfigure, add, change, or delete files. The NIPC and FedCIRC consider this to be a significant threat due to the large installed base of IIS users, the potential for remote compromise, and the level of access granted by this vulnerability. This FBI Awareness of National Security Issues and Response (ANSIR) communication is intended for corporate security professionals and others. The Microsoft bulletin describing this vulnerability, and its patch to fix the problem, may be found at: http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/MS01-033.asp
(FBI Special Agent Gary Harter, gharter@leo.gov)

HACKER VIGILANTES STRIKE BACK -- As security breaches explode and law enforcement struggles to keep up, some organizations are taking the law into their own hands and punishing hackers themselves. Striking back at hackers with, for example, denial of service attacks is a sensitive subject, since doing so is illegal in most countries. The process involves bombarding a server with so much traffic that it crashes. However, security experts say the U.S. Department of Defense has done it. (courtesy T. Newcomb) (CNN) [http://www.cnn.com/2001/TECH/internet/06/20/hacker.vigilantes.idg/index.html]

HACKER ATTACKS ON CALIFORNIA POWER SUPPLY FOILED -- Several times over a period beginning April 25 and lasting until May 11, hackers attempted to gain access to the servers at California's Independent System Operators (Cal-ISO), the agency that manages the state's electrical supply and decides when rolling blackouts will occur. According to the Los Angeles Times, malicious users got close to disrupting the flow of power in California during the rolling blackouts that occurred on May 7 and 8z of this year. The attacks were routed through China during a time when Chinese hackers had announced a cyberwar against the United States in retaliation for the death of Chinese pilot Wang Wei, who was lost at sea when his plane collided with a US spy plane April 1.(Levine)


THE PRICE OF VIGILANCE: Attacks on American Surveillance Flights, by Larry Tart and Robert Keefe, Ballantine Books, NY, June 2001, ISBN 0-8041-1911-2., over 500 pages, including Appendices, Notes and Index.. This is a work by an insiders, former members of the "back-end" crews who have played such a critical role in collecting intelligence through by airborne electronic surveillance missions. The majority of these reconnaissance missions are routine, but the recent collision of the Navy's EP-3 and a Chinese fighter demonstrate the always-present risk. The EP-3 crew survived, because of the skill of the pilot, and because the Chinese did not want to shoot it down -- only to harass. The Chinese pilot shadowed the plane, flew directly beneath it to create turbulence, and then suddenly started a climb immediately in front of it -- and misjudged the distance. He performed that dangerous maneuver precisely because China does not officially consider the US its enemy. In the Cold War, in too many cases, the approved method was to kill it. And that what is covered by this excellent book that fills a hole in the literature of Cold War - and still ongoing- intelligence reconnaissance missions. The Price of Vigilance brings to life the risks and sacrifices, the diplomatic furor that erupted after shootdowns, the grief and frustration of the families. The centerpiece is the shootdown of the USAF C130 over Armenia in 1958, with no survivors. This is story of a part of the silent war the needed to be told. Larry Tart and Robert Keefe have done another service by writing this book. Recommended reading! (Jonkers)

BIN LADEN ORGANIZATION VIDEO -- A recruitment video created by the terrorist organization al-Qa'ida and its leader, Osama Bin Laden, has recently become available to several news agencies. The video features terrorists in various stages of training and includes direct references to the bombing of the American destroyer USS Cole. The video appears to be a promotional vehicle to increase membership in al-Qa'ida and solicit financial contributions.


Ref: NRO OVERHANG -- (WIN 24 item). Former HPSCI Staff Director Mark Lowenthal writes: 

A minor point of clarification re the NRO: the "flap" in 1996 was about the fact that the "carry forward account" was so large, but not that funds had been diverted to build the new NRO buildings. NRO always had carry forward authority as some of its programs could not be fully executed in a fiscal year. However, HPSCI was amazed/shocked, etc. when we discovered just how large this account had become and that it was not being fully reported to Congress. However, there was never any concern that some of these funds had been used for other purposes, such as the new buildings.

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