AFIO Weekly Intelligence Notes #24-09 dated 30 June 2009






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Friday, 14 August 2009


Gen. Michael V. Hayden,
USAF (Ret)

Former Director of
Central Intelligence Agency
and Former Director of the
National Security Agency

Afternoon Speaker

Current policies and the U.S. Intelligence Community

Morning speaker - t.b.a.

EVENT LOCATION: The Crowne Plaza
1960 Chain Bridge Road • McLean, Virginia 22102
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AFIO 2009 Fall Convention in Las Vegas, Nevada
13 October to 16 October, 2009
Cold Warriors in the Desert: From Atomic Blasts to Sonic Booms

Symposium will feature presentations on the testing of atomic weapons, airborne reconnaissance platforms, and more. Onsite visits to Nellis Air Force Base - Home of the Fighter Pilot, the U.S. Department of Energy's Nevada Test Site - the former on-continent nuclear weapons proving ground, and Creech Air Force Base - the home of the Predator unmanned aerial vehicles (currently deployed for combat missions in the Middle East, yet piloted from Creech).

Preliminary Agenda HERE for scheduling of your travel

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Harrah's Hotel Registration is available now at: Telephone reservations may be made at 800-901-5188. Refer to Group Code SHAIO9 to get the special AFIO rate.

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Special AFIO October Symposium Las Vegas rates are available up to Friday, September 11, 2009

WIN CREDITS FOR THIS ISSUE: The WIN editors thank the following special contributors to this issue:  fwr, pjk and dh.  

They have contributed one or more stories used in this issue.

For Additional Events two+ months or more....
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Top German Spy Says More Russian Snooping on Firms. Russian spies are targeting the German energy sector to help Russian firms gain commercial advantages, the head of Germany's domestic counter-espionage unit said.

"The Russian intelligence services, keeping up with their government's changing information needs, have intensified efforts in recent years to investigate German firms illegally," according to Burkhard Even.

The director of Counter-Intelligence at the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution said the spying was aimed mostly at information on alternative and renewable energy and efforts to increase efficiency. European energy interests, diversification plans, and Germany's economic situation were also espionage targets.

Last month Interior Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble also noted, when presenting his ministry's 2008 security report, that Russia and China were stepping up espionage efforts and Internet attacks on German companies.

Last year a German court convicted a former employee of European aeronautic defense and space company EADS of selling information on civilian helicopters to Russian intelligence.

Moscow's Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR), smaller than its military intelligence service but successor to part of the Soviet KGB, is the body analysts say covers economic matters.

The head of the unit, Mikhail Fradkov, is a former Prime Minister and economics expert appointed by former President Vladimir Putin, himself a former KGB spy during the Cold War.

Germany's Even said the targets of espionage were expanding and that all companies should tighten up security.  

DHS to Kill Domestic Satellite Spying. A government official says Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano plans to kill a controversial program begun by the Bush administration to use U.S. spy satellites for domestic security and law enforcement.

The program was announced in 2007 and was to have been run by Homeland Security. It has been delayed because of privacy and civil liberty concerns.

The official said lawmakers who objected to the program, known as the National Applications Office, will be notified about the decision Tuesday. The official was not authorized to discuss the decision and spoke on condition of anonymity Monday.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency and Interior Department will continue to have access to this satellite imagery. [Sullivan/AP/22June2009]

DOD Weighs Greater Use of Social Media. Top Defense Department officials, noting the importance social networking has played in detailing events surrounding Iran's disputed elections, acknowledge that the Pentagon needs to take a closer look at social media technologies.

"This department, I think, is way behind the power curve in this; it's an area where I think we have a lot of room for improvement," said Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates, speaking to reporters at a Pentagon news conference last week.

"How do we communicate better with [young people]?" Gates asked. "How do we get reactions from them to things that we're doing? How do we get better plugged in with what they're thinking?"

The answer to those questions, in Gates' view, is to harness social media to enable DOD reach out to the world.

"For leaders... it's really important to be connected to [social networking tools] and understand it," said Navy Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, noting that he has his own Facebook page. "I think communicating that way and moving information around that way - whether it's administrative information or information in warfare - is absolutely critical."

While the lure of the social networking is increasing, the phenomenon is not without risk. Jack Kiesler, chief of cyber counterintelligence at the Defense Intelligence Agency, cited participation in online discussion groups or blogs by DOD employees or contractors as one avenue foreign intelligence services could use to single out disgruntled military or intelligence agency employees, who then could be recruited or blackmailed.

In addition, according to Kiesler, foreign agents seeking to steal stealth technology might start by trying to identify individuals - via social media profiles - who are working on the technology: figuring out whom they associate with, following their movements, looking for clues about new research and development and so on.

Kiesler noted that an "Intelligence Professionals" group exists today on the social media site, and that 163 LinkedIn members listed the Defense Intelligence Agency as their current employer. [Hickey/GCN/22June2009] 

Iran's Web Spying Aided By Western Technology. The Iranian regime has developed, with the assistance of European telecommunications companies, one of the world's most sophisticated mechanisms for controlling and censoring the Internet, allowing it to examine the content of individual online communications on a massive scale.

Interviews with technology experts in Iran and outside the country say Iranian efforts at monitoring Internet information go well beyond blocking access to Web sites or severing Internet connections.

Instead, in confronting the political turmoil that has consumed the country this past week, the Iranian government appears to be engaging in a practice often called deep packet inspection, which enables authorities to not only block communication but to monitor it to gather information about individuals, as well as alter it for disinformation purposes, according to these experts.

The monitoring capability was provided, at least in part, by a joint venture of Siemens AG, the German conglomerate, and Nokia Corp., the Finnish cellphone company, in the second half of 2008, Ben Roome, a spokesman for the joint venture, confirmed.

The "monitoring center," installed within the government's telecom monopoly, was part of a larger contract with Iran that included mobile-phone networking technology, Mr. Roome said.

"If you sell networks, you also, intrinsically, sell the capability to intercept any communication that runs over them," said Mr. Roome.

The sale of the equipment to Iran by the joint venture, called Nokia Siemens Networks, was previously reported last year by the editor of an Austrian information-technology Web site called Futurezone.

The Iranian government had experimented with the equipment for brief periods in recent months, but it had not been used extensively, and therefore its capabilities weren't fully displayed - until during the recent unrest, the Internet experts interviewed said.

"We didn't know they could do this much," said a network engineer in Tehran. "Now we know they have powerful things that allow them to do very complex tracking on the network."

Deep packet inspection involves inserting equipment into a flow of online data, from emails and Internet phone calls to images and messages on social-networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter. Every digitized packet of online data is deconstructed, examined for keywords and reconstructed within milliseconds. In Iran's case, this is done for the entire country at a single choke point, according to networking engineers familiar with the country's system. It couldn't be determined whether the equipment from Nokia Siemens Networks is used specifically for deep packet inspection.

All eyes have been on the Internet amid the crisis in Iran, and government attempts to crack down on information. The infiltration of Iranian online traffic could explain why the government has allowed the Internet to continue to function - and also why it has been running at such slow speeds in the days since the results of the presidential vote spurred unrest.

Users in the country report the Internet having slowed to less than a tenth of normal speeds. Deep packet inspection delays the transmission of online data unless it is offset by a huge increase in processing power, according to Internet experts.

Iran is "now drilling into what the population is trying to say," said Bradley Anstis, director of technical strategy with Marshal8e6 Inc., an Internet security company in Orange, Calif. He and other experts interviewed have examined Internet traffic flows in and out of Iran that show characteristics of content inspection, among other measures. "This looks like a step beyond what any other country is doing, including China."

China's vaunted "Great Firewall," which is widely considered the most advanced and extensive Internet censoring in the world, is believed also to involve deep packet inspection. But China appears to be developing this capability in a more decentralized manner, at the level of its Internet service providers rather than through a single hub, according to experts. That suggests its implementation might not be as uniform as that in Iran, they said, as the arrangement depends on the cooperation of all the service providers. [Rhodes&Chao/WallStreetJournal/22June2009] 

Guant�namo Detainee, Considered an Enemy by Both Sides, is Ordered Free. Almost all detainees at the US terrorism prison camp at Guant�namo Bay, Cuba, claim they are innocents being wrongfully held. But Abdulrahim Al Janko has a unique argument in that regard - and it won him his freedom.

In January 2002, US military forces found him in a notorious Afghan prison where Al Qaeda and Taliban officials allegedly tortured him for 18 months because they suspected he was an American spy.

Mr. Janko was anxious to provide information about Al Qaeda human rights violations to the Americans who liberated him. Instead, he was sent to Guant�namo, where he faced another round of harsh interrogation techniques - this time by Americans who suspected he was an Al Qaeda loyalist.

Now, after 7-1/2 years at Guant�namo, Mr. Janko may soon be a free man.

On Monday, a federal judge in Washington ordered Janko released. He instructed the US government "to take all necessary and appropriate diplomatic steps to facilitate [Janko's] release forthwith."

In the jargon of a Guant�namo habeas corpus challenge, that is a grand-slam home run for a detainee and his lawyers.

Does Janko know yet?

Janko was supposed to be allowed to listen to the ruling live via telephone from Guant�namo. But the line went dead before the announcement.

"I am hoping he's gotten the word, but I can't confirm that," said one of Janko's lawyers, Stephen Sady, chief deputy federal public defender in Portland, Ore., on Tuesday. "We're trying to set up something."

Janko is a Syrian national who lived with his family in the United Arab Emirates. In 2000, after a dispute with his father, he went to Afghanistan and spent 18 days in an Al Qaeda training camp before being accused of spying for the US. Later, he was sent by US officials to Guant�namo.

Janko's lawyers waged a multiyear effort to win his release. They argued that their client could not be detained as an enemy combatant because, after his brutal treatment, he considered Al Qaeda to be the enemy.

Government lawyers insisted that Janko's initial contacts in Afghanistan with Taliban and Al Qaeda officials (before he was accused of spying and tortured) were enough to justify his indefinite detention at Guant�namo.

In his ruling, US District Judge Richard Leon said the government's position "defies common sense."

Justice Department lawyers under both Presidents Bush and Obama said Janko's extreme treatment by Al Qaeda and the Taliban was not sufficient to vitiate any prior relationship he had with those organizations.

"I disagree!" Judge Leon wrote in a 13-page declassified version of his release order. He said the evidence "overwhelmingly leads this court to conclude that the relationship that existed in 2000 - such as it was - no longer existed whatsoever in 2002 when Janko was taken into [US] custody."

That means, according to the judge, US forces had no legal authority to detain Janko as an enemy combatant in 2002, or to continue holding him in 2009.

Judge Leon said any relationship between Janko and Al Qaeda was, at best, in its formative stage in 2000. "To say the least, five days at a guesthouse in Kabul combined with 18 days at a training camp does not add up to a long-standing bond of brotherhood," Leon wrote.

Janko's lawyer said the case highlights the importance of independent judicial review.

"Mr. Janko and other Guant�namo detainees have proved to be innocent victims of fear and errors, not the worst of the worst," Mr. Sady said. [Richey/CSMonitor/23June2009]

Obama Task Force on Torture Considers CIA-FBI Interrogation Teams. The task force charged with fleshing out President Obama's ban on torture in interrogations is likely to recommend the creation of small, mixed-agency teams for interviewing the most important terrorist targets. Representing an implicit demotion of the CIA, which currently has responsibility for interrogating high-level terrorists, the teams would report jointly to the attorney general and the director of national intelligence, according to officials familiar with the proposal.

The teams are the brainchild of three members of the Intelligence Science Board, a panel that reports to the director of national intelligence: forensic psychologist Robert Fein, former Deputy Attorney General Philip Heymann and former CIA official John MacGaffin. About five years ago, the three security experts began researching the available social science literature concerning interrogations in a variety of nations, including the United States, France, the United Kingdom and Japan, in order to inform a humane and effective interrogation regimen. A two-volume report the panel produced - the first phase was released in December 2006; the second, completed last month, is still classified - both repudiated torture and attributed interrogation-related abuses in part to a "shortfall in advanced, research-based interrogation methods at a time of intense pressure from operational commanders to produce actionable intelligence from high-value targets," Fein wrote in the first volume, 'Educing Information,' which The Washington Independent reported on last year.

Last month, J. Douglas Wilson, the Justice Department official who leads the Obama administration's Special Task Force on Interrogation and Transfer Policies - a panel created by President Obama's January 22 executive order banning torture - invited the Intelligence Science Board members to Washington to brief the task force on their recommendations. In an oral presentation and a five-page summary of hundreds of pages of work, Heymann said, he and his colleagues recommended the creation of "an organizational structure that could draw" on the experience of a small corps of the best interrogators currently working for the government who "could produce what would very likely be the best non-coercive interrogation or interviewing capacity in the world." That corps would serve as the first wave of interrogators under the new structure while preparing a syllabus on proper interrogation guidelines for new recruits to the teams.

"The group would be mobile, and go where it needed to go," said Heymann, now a Harvard law professor, envisioning teams of three to five interrogators at a time who would "only deal with major interviews and major occasions to get information from a terror suspect" of the order of Abu Zubaydah or Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, two of the most senior al-Qaeda captives held by the CIA and later the Defense Department. While emphasizing that the task force might not adopt every detail of his proposal and that modifications were likely, Heymann said that the teams would "report both to the Justice Department and to the intelligence world," a move intended to ensure that interrogations do not compromise prosecutions of detainees, a significant departure from the Bush administration.

The task force - officially chaired by Attorney General Eric Holder and co-vice-chaired by Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates - has embraced the proposal, according to an official familiar with its work. "It's highly thought out and sophisticated," the official said. "This is going to be part of the draft recommendations. It may or may not make the final cut, but I'd be very surprised if it did not." The task force is scheduled to deliver its recommendations to the White House by July 21. Spokespeople for Holder and Blair declined to comment on the task force's recommendations while its work was ongoing.

Heymann said that interrogators from across the military, CIA, and FBI, would be charged with creating a "syllabus" of best interrogation practices that fall within the boundaries of the U.S. Army Field Manual on Interrogations, which complies with the Geneva Conventions. Heymann said that the social science research supporting the Intelligence Science Board's work ruled out all forms of physical and psychological torture as methods for soliciting information. "What I mean by 'non-coercive' is in line with what our major allies do - Britain, France, other European nations - and not out of line with what's accepted by western nations," Heymann said. "We would not do anything to other people that we would complain about if done to Americans abroad in other circumstances, we wouldn't do something we wouldn't do to an American in the U.S., and we would be pretty well in line with the views of our major allies," a perspective adopted in order to ensure robust intelligence cooperation with U.S. allies concerned about torture can continue.

Additionally, the Intelligence Science Board recommended that ahead of the deployment of the interrogation teams, senior administration officials should decide whether or not the substance of the interrogation ought to be used as evidence for a criminal prosecution. "There would have to be an early decision, presumably made in Washington by people with a high level of responsibility, as to whether to take whatever steps necessary to ensure any statements could be used at a trial, or to go ahead and get as much information as possible, without worrying about convicting on that basis," Heymann said. The decision would impact whether to immediately provide a detainee with a lawyer in preparation of seeking a conviction or whether to proceed with an interrogation in order to collect intelligence about a broad picture of a terrorist organization or specific plot.

"That doesn't mean we torture them," Heymann said. "It means to forget about offering a lawyer, if that's required, even though that means we would not use any statement at trial." Acquiring information intended for use when trying a detainee would have to meet standards for admissibility in criminal court. "If you want to admit it in American court, it's going to have to be noncoercive and perhaps comply with the Miranda rules," Heymann said.

According to the official familiar with the task force's work, who requested anonymity because the draft has not been finalized, the interrogation teams would "draw on the best and the brightest from the FBI, [Department of Justice], [Department of Defense] and other parts of the intelligence and law enforcement community," and there were "some discussions" among task force members about whether "it would make the most sense for the FBI to take the lead," given the FBI's 100-year history with interrogating criminal suspects. Some task force members want the "FBI to lead but not dominate." The official added that the CIA's role in interrogations remained to be determined at this point in the task force's work.

A U.S. intelligence official who requested anonymity insisted that "[the Defense Department] and CIA will continue to play a role in questioning suspected terrorists overseas."

But the official familiar with the work of the task force said a benefit of the proposal to create the new interrogations corps is that it would use the Field Manual as a "left and right guideline" for the interrogators to plan their interrogations, rather than a manual spelling out precisely what techniques would be employed in every situation. Interrogators rarely think in terms of specific techniques, the official said, preferring to focus on how to craft an interview regimen that best exploits the leverage interrogators have on detainees.

Heymann agreed, citing the research his team has conducted for the past five years. "If we captured a major terrorist, we would bring quickly to bear what's known about him, his organization and its possible plans, so that the interview or interrogation could be done with all the advantages of superior knowledge, which are big advantages," he said.

Some Republican members of the Senate intelligence and armed services committees have expressed fear that the Army Field Manual on Interrogations could be turned into a manual for suspected terrorists to learn how to frustrate U.S. interrogators. During CIA Director Leon Panetta's confirmation hearing, Sen. Kit Bond (R-Mo.), the vice chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, extracted an assurance from that Panetta would request the president approve techniques outside the Army Field Manual if he felt they were necessary to protect national security. But the official said a literal reliance on the methods outlined in the field manual were mostly useful as "a linear basis for newly initiated personnel," rather than the interrogator corps envisioned in the Intelligence Science Board proposal.

Vicki Divoll, a former legal adviser to the CIA's Counterterrorist Center and general counsel for the Senate intelligence committee, said that a hybrid interrogation corps made sense given the divergent missions of the law enforcement and intelligence communities. "CIA analysts and case officers know what we need from an intelligence perspective to fill in the gaps to learn the plans, intentions and capabilities of foreign terrorists who wish us harm. But CIA's skill set has been to get the information through the art of persuasion, not the art of coercion," Divoll said. "FBI, on the other hand, has historically not been good at seeking or identifying information of intelligence value. They can spot 'evidence' that, linearly, might lead to an arrest and prosecution, but are not as adept at collecting vague bits of information that might, someday, prove useful when linked with information gleaned from other sources and methods throughout the intelligence community. The FBI is experienced at using nonviolent but aggressive techniques, within the rule of law, to elicit information from individuals who are hostile and uncooperative."

The official familiar with the task force's work said that the draft report would seek to ensure that "the need for actionable information is mutually compatible with requirements for an eventual court case." While internal debate continues - the official conceded that task force members were "maybe not 100 percent unanimous" on the question - the emerging consensus was the "need for information that disrupts future [terrorist] operations and provides actionable intelligence to decisionmakers" takes primacy, though many on the panel believe that eliciting actionable intelligence and evidence suitable for a prosecution was "mutually compatible."

The torture of certain high-value detainees during the Bush administration has bequeathed to the Obama administration a situation in which officials fear prosecutions of detainees who continue to "endanger the American people" would be compromised by inadmissible evidence, a problem that Obama, in a recent speech, called "the toughest single issue that we will face" in interrogations and detentions. The administration's answer is to keep those individuals in prolonged detention, promising merely to "have clear, defensible, and lawful standards for those who fall into this category." A separate task force on detentions is at work determining what those standards will be.

"This is perhaps the biggest wound that the Bush administration has inflicted on the structure of how to do these things," said Karen Greenberg, executive director of the Center on Law and Security at New York University. "This category - those we can't try, and can't let go - is a heinous category." Unless the Obama administration builds concern for the final dispensation of future terrorist captives into its new interrogation and detention architecture and "the intelligence guys work with and collaborate with the law enforcement guys," the number of detainees in that category "will proliferate rather than come to end with the closing of Guantanamo."

Despite the prospective reduction in the CIA's role in interrogations, Divoll anticipated that agency officers might welcome the task force's proposal, since it would place the CIA in a role better suited to its traditional strengths of intelligence gathering and analysis. "Career CIA officers are unlikely to view a second chair seat to FBI in the coercive interrogation process as a demotion," she said. "I expect they will welcome the vital roles of, first, guiding the substance of the questioning of a detained terrorist suspect in the necessary direction, and, second, using the fruits of the interrogation to its greatest advantage in their all-source intelligence analysis for policymakers." [Ackerman/WashingtonIndependent/23June2009]

Kim Jong Il Puts Son as Head of Spy Agency. North Korean leader Kim Jong Il has put his youngest son in charge of the country's spy agency in a move aimed at handing the communist regime over to him.

Kim visited the headquarters of the State Security Department in March, along with his 26-year-old third son, Kim Jong Un, and told agency leaders to "uphold" the son as head of the department, the Dong-a Ilbo newspaper reported citing an unnamed source.

Kim also told department leaders to "safeguard comrade Kim Jong Un with (your) lives as you did for me in the past," and gave them five foreign-made cars, each worth some $80,000, as gifts, the mass-market daily said.

It said Kim visited a college that educates spy agents last month and made similar remarks there.

Pyongyang's State Security Department is the backbone of Kim's harsh rule over the totalitarian nation. It keeps a close watch over government agencies, the military and ordinary people for any signs of dissent. It also engages in spy missions abroad.

The move to put Jong Un in charge of the agency illustrates Kim's concern about any possible backlash that the father-to-son succession could prompt, the Dong-a said.

The paper also said Jong Un oversaw the handling of two American journalists detained in March while on a reporting trip to the China-North Korea border. The reporters were sentenced to 12 years of hard labor earlier this month for illegal border crossing and hostile acts.

South Korea's main spy agency, the National Intelligence Service, said it could not confirm the Dong-a report.

Who will eventually rule the nuclear-armed North has been the focus of intense media speculation since leader Kim, 67, reportedly suffered a stroke last summer. That sparked regional concerns about instability and a possible power struggle if he died without naming a successor.

The succession talk has further intensified after Seoul's spy agency reported to lawmakers early this month that the regime in Pyongyang notified its diplomatic missions and government agencies that Jong Un will be the next leader.

Seoul's JoongAng Ilbo newspaper reported earlier this month that Jong Un was given the title of "Brilliant Comrade," another sign that the regime is preparing to name him as successor.

Kim Jong Il inherited North Korea after his father and founding leader Kim Il Sung died in 1994.

On Tuesday, the North's main Rodong Sinmun newspaper carried a remark by Kim Jong Il that could be seen as a justification of the father-to-son succession.

"Our resolution is winning victory after victory because the bloodline" of the country's self-reliance ideology has been succeeded through generations. [FoxNews/24June2009] 

Cold War Report Acquits Danish Intelligence Service. The Police Intelligence Service (PET) Commission, which was set up 10 years ago to look into PET activities during the Cold War, has finally produced its report and found that the service has 'never appeared to be a state in a state that acted according to its own norms'.

"We have done our job and I support every word we have written," says PET Commission Chairman Leif Aamand, who handed over 4,600 pages in 16 volumes to Justice Minister Brian Mikkelsen today.

The Commission was set up in 1998 to determine whether the domestic intelligence agency had exceeded its mandate during the Cold War in illegally registering individuals solely as a result of their political affiliations.

The Commission, which says that PET registered between 250,000 and 300,000 Danes in the mid-1960s, has studied some 13,000 cases.

Among other things, the Commission refutes claims by former Justice Minister Knud Thestrup (Cons) in his private diary that Arne Nielsen, PET's director from 1964 to 1970, had ordered the microfilming of the entire PET register and deposited the film at the Danish embassy in Washington.

The Commission, however, found that Thestrup's notes had been a misunderstanding, despite statements by former Justice Ministry Permanent Undersecretary Niels Madsen.

Madsen, who is now dead, has previously been quoted as saying that "The transfer of the material to Washington was a breach of trust on the part of PET" and that he "was always of the impression that the films in Washington contained information which contravened the government declaration."

The government declaration referred to was one in 1968 that banned registering citizens solely on the grounds of their political affiliations.

The Commission says that a secret Justice Ministry memorandum made it possible for PET to register more Danes than the public realised. According to the Commission these included Trotskyists, anarchists and left-wing revolutionary groups that were said to be suited to creating disturbances. This also included parts of the Left Socialist Party.

The PET Commission has been composed of a High Court Judge, two Professors at Law and two historians. The report is said to have cost Denmark DKK 70 million. [] 

Palestinian Woman Gets 20 Years' Labor for Helping Israel. Dressed in jeans and a tight headscarf, she stood in a makeshift courtroom with plastic chairs and tables and a television set hanging from the wall. She barely said a word. At the moment of sentencing, when the chief military judge in the Palestinian city of Jenin jailed her for 20 years' hard labor, Taghrid al-Tibi held one hand to her face in shock and sadness. Then she was led away.

Divorced, unemployed and only 21 years old, she was one of the few Palestinian women convicted of treason. Her crime: collaboration with the Israeli security services.

Hers is a grim story of an unhappy life and naivety. Enticed out of the occupied West Bank and into Israel, then plunged into a high-risk spying effort that lasted for five months until her capture, Tibi was lucky to escape with her life: collaborators, who are nearly always men, are so reviled among Palestinians that many are either shot in the street or sentenced to years on death row.

She did not speak to journalists after her hearing last week, but accounts from prosecutors involved in her case paint a scattered picture of Tibi's life. Originally from Tulkarem, she was living with her family in Nablus, in the north of the occupied West Bank. She attended school until the age of 16 but then her father ordered her to marry an older man. It was an unhappy marriage: she told the court that he had forced her into prostitution. Within a few years she was divorced and increasingly cut off from her family.

Several months ago Tibi met an Arab-Israeli in Nablus, named Mahmoud, who persuaded her to join him on a trip back into Israel. She agreed, though it should perhaps have raised her suspicions when he arranged a rare permit for her to leave the West Bank.

The couple slept together and then he took her to an office in Tel Aviv, where Israeli security service agents apparently confronted her with a video of her in bed with the man, the prosecutors said. They threatened to pass the video back to her family unless she helped them and also apparently promised her 100,000 shekels (�15,500) if she would pass them regular information about a group of militants in Nablus.

She told her story in a six-page signed affidavit for the prosecutors. It began with her name, date of birth and her background. Then she said: "Five months ago I met this guy, Mahmoud, I didn't know his full name. He was working inside the Green Line [within Israel]. I sat with him a couple of times in the park. He took me on a visit. We went to Tel Aviv. Inside the offices there was an Israeli commander and he knew everything about me.

"He asked me to relax for an hour and then he said he wanted me to give him information on 10 wanted men in exchange for 100,000 shekels."

She returned to Nablus and for five months she spent time with several militants, men she knew only by the pseudonyms they used to protect their identity. She would regularly head out to the Israeli military checkpoint at Hawara, on the southern edge of the city, and pass on information to an Israeli contact.

However, she learned little about the militants or their activities and her information was always of little value, the prosecutors said. None of the militants she met were arrested or killed.

Eventually the militants became suspicious of her questions. They confronted her, she confessed and then in May they handed her over to the Palestinian authorities in Nablus.

At the end of the affidavit, she was asked if she wanted to add anything to her statement. Tibi answered: "I'm really sorry for what I've done but I'm glad that I haven't been the reason for anybody getting hurt."

Tibi's case was passed to the military court and Major Alam Dalbeh, the military prosecutor in Jenin, sat with her in his second-floor office for an interrogation. She volunteered the entire story, he said.

"Her father married her off when she was 16 and her husband was corrupt and immoral," said Dalbeh. "All these things contributed to her becoming a collaborator, but the law is the law. Still, it was very hard for us to question her. She confessed very fast, faster than in any other case like this that I've dealt with before. She was very sad. She kept saying: 'I'm sorry. I won't do it again.' She said: 'I'm a victim of my father and my husband.'"

She was offered the chance to hire a lawyer to defend herself, but refused and was given a court lawyer. None of her family appeared at court for the hearing.

Prosecutors said her sentence of hard labour meant she faced years of menial tasks inside the jail, mostly cleaning and washing. She may have to serve the full 20 years, although it is more likely that she will be pardoned well before her sentence ends - the Palestinian president has the authority to pardon prisoners and often does so, usually on religious holidays.

However, since collaboration is such a reviled crime in Palestinian society and given that her family appears to have disowned her, she is likely to face another challenge in finding a place in society when she is eventually freed.

Dalbeh, who has prosecuted other collaborators in the past, said the crime was seen as "very disgraceful" in Palestinian society. "Many members of the resistance have been killed or arrested in the past because of collaborators, because of people like her. We are in the stage of building a Palestinian state and such collaborators are affecting the establishment of the state," he said.

Other cases had also involved sexual entrapment, Dalbeh said, or the promises of permits to enter Israel or visas to live in countries abroad. "Their tricks are very well known to us," he said.

"They used her like a slice of lemon," said Mohammad Hamashe, another prosecutor. "They squeezed the juice out of her and then threw her away with the rubbish."

According to B'Tselem, the Israeli human rights group, 26 Palestinians have been sentenced for crimes of treason or collaborating since the Palestinian Authority was established in 1994.

Some prisoners have escaped or died in jail, others have had their sentences commuted by the president.

B'Tselem's figures show only one execution for treason - that of a 27-year-old man from Rafah, Gaza, who was killed in January 2001 at the beginning of the second intifada, the most recent Palestinian uprising.

But the statistics do not tell the whole story. Many collaborators are rounded up before they reach court and shot in the street by militants. Nearly all have been men.  [Guardian/25June2009] 

Former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein Bluffed About WMDs Fearing Iranian Arsenal, Secret FBI Files Show. Saddam Hussein feared Iran's arsenal more than a U.S. attack, and even considered asking ex-President George W. Bush "to protect" Iraq from its neighbor, once secret FBI files show.

The FBI interrogations of the toppled tyrant - codename "Desert Spider" - were declassified after a Freedom of Information Act request. The records show Saddam happily boasted of duping the world about stockpiling weapons of mass destruction. And he consistently denied cooperating with Osama Bin Laden's Al Qaeda.

Of all his enemies, Iraq's ex-president - who insisted he still held office during captivity - hated Iran most.

Asked how he would have faced "fanatic" Iranian ayatollahs if Iraq had been proven toothless by UN weapons inspectors in 2003, Saddam said he would have cut a deal with Bush.

"Hussein replied Iraq would have been extremely vulnerable to attack from Iran and would have sought a security agreement with the U.S. to protect it from threats in the region," according to a 2004 FBI report among the declassified files.

Without Bush's help, "Iraq would have done what was necessary," he told FBI Agent George Piro in his Baghdad International Airport cell.

That didn't mean an alliance of evil with Al Qaeda, he insisted months into what he called a "dialogue" with Piro.

The interrogations unfolded in 2004 after his capture the previous December at the same farm where he said he'd hidden after orchestrating a failed 1959 coup plot.

Saddam denied ever laying eyes on the "zealot" Bin Laden, bent on striking the U.S.

He said he "did not have the same belief of vision" as the terror kingpin.

Saddam never sought Al Qaeda assistance because he feared the terror group would turn on him. To protect his country, the more likely ally "would have been North Korea."

Saddam also said the U.S. "used the 9/11 attack as a justification to attack Iraq" and "lost sight of the cause of 9/11."

The U.S. "was not Iraq's enemy," just its policies, Saddam explained.

Asked about WMDs, Saddam insisted: "We destroyed them. We told you."

"By God, if I had such weapons, I would have used them in the fight against the U.S," he added. [Meek/NyDailyNews/24June2009]

US Counterintel Chief to be Replaced. The U.S. official who oversees government efforts to catch foreign spies and foil their plots will leave his post on July 4.

National Intelligence Director Dennis Blair announced the departure of Joel Brenner, the national counterintelligence executive for the last three years, in a message to employees.

Brenner's departure comes in the midst of National Intelligence Director Blair's review of all counterintelligence activities and policies. No reason was given for Brenner's departure and his replacement has not yet been announced. Brenner could not be reached for comment.

The counterintelligence executive sets policy and coordinates government actions to discover foreign spies and intruders trying to steal information from government computer networks. Active spy hunting is left to the FBI and counterintelligence officers inside individual government agencies.

Brenner explained the field of counterintelligence this way in a February speech: "If there's a hole in your fence, security's job is to fix it. Our job in part is to figure out how it got there, who's been coming through it, and what they took when they left," he said, adding. "And how to return the favor."

Brenner's departure creates a third vacancy at the senior levels of the office of the director of national intelligence. [Hess/AP/26June2009] 

Supreme Court Ends Plame's Suit Against Cheney. The Supreme Court will not revive a lawsuit that former CIA operative Valerie Plame brought against former members of the Bush administration.

The court on Monday refused to hear an appeal from Plame and her husband, former Ambassador Joseph Wilson.

The Supreme Court upheld an appeals court and a district court, both of which refused to hear the case over the last two years. The lawsuit named former vice president Dick Cheney, presidential adviser Karl Rove; Cheney's former top aide, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby; and former Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage.

Plame and her husband, former Ambassador Joe Wilson, had sued Libby, the longtime chief of staff to former Vice President Dick Cheney, for his role in leaking Plame's name to the media at a time her husband was questioning the Bush administration's claims against Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein.

The Obama Justice Department followed the Bush administration's lead in opposing the lawsuit, arguing the Wilsons have no grounds on which to sue the former administration officials.

"The Wilsons and their counsel are disappointed by the Supreme Court's refusal to hear the case, but more significantly, this is a setback for our democracy," Melanie Sloan, executive director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, told The Hill. [AP/22June2009]

Ex-CIA Columnist Suspects Interference by His Former Employer. Stephen Lee, a former CIA operations manager who blogs for The Washington Examiner, suspects the spy agency's censors are trying to sabotage his new career.

Lee recently launched the critical "Examiner Spy" column for the Examiner newspaper chain, which has a D.C. daily edition. He also pens a biting cartoon for his own Web site,, under the name Frank Naif.

"I believe I am being subjected to a campaign of low-level harassment," Lee said Wednesday.

As required by his CIA secrecy agreement, he submits all his columns, and even his cartoons, to the agency's Publications Review Board, or PRB, for approval.

Since the Examiner expects him to write at least four pieces a week, he said, it's essential for the censors to return his manuscripts at a swift, or at least predictable, pace. 

An Army veteran who worked in counterterrorism for the CIA, Lee said he takes pains not to mention, or even hint at, material that he knows must remain secret.

But like virtually all ex-CIA employees who have dealt with the PRB, he is sometimes mystified by what it chooses to censor.

In a June 19 piece, "Despite reform pledges, Panetta enables CIA's bad old habits," agency censors blacked out the name an al Qaeda suspect abducted by a CIA team in Italy in 2003, plus the name of the city where the snatch occurred, and the name of the CIA station chief in Rome - all of which have been widely reported, based on publicly available court documents and sources.

Lee reworded that piece and then it was quickly approved, he said. The same went for his next two manuscripts.

But then, he says, the PRB "lost" the next three he turned in for review.

The first was a critical piece on former CIA Director Michael V. Hayden, acidly headlined, "CIA ex-chief Hayden blames bloggers for damage caused by his policies."

Lee says he submitted the piece for clearance on Friday, June 19. The weekend passed. Finally, at mid-morning on Tuesday, June 23, he learned the PRB had "lost" it.

He resubmitted the piece, and around 4 p.m. Tuesday, he got an answer: It was cleared.

Meantime, he says, two more of his articles had gone "missing." One was about CIA-related legislation in Congress, another a criticism of CIA recruiting and training.

Both were submitted Sunday night, June 21. On Tuesday, he learned that they, too, had been "lost."

The CIA censors, he said, "apologized."

Lee resubmitted them, and over the next 48 hours, they were cleared, he says.

Scores of former CIA employees write books and articles every year, but Lee, 43, is maybe the first to write a daily newspaper column.

The late William F. Buckley founded National Review and regularly wrote opinion pieces. And Tom Braden, who died in April, wrote a syndicated column that appeared in The Washington Post.

Both Buckley and Braden worked for the CIA in its very early years after World War Two. Neither were career CIA employees.

Ex-CIA Middle East operative Robert Baer, who writes regularly for Time magazine, says the CIA vets some of the facts he intends to use in a column. But he says he does not give the spies an opportunity to pass judgment on his editorial opinions or analyses.

"It's never been a problem so far," says Baer, who pens withering criticism of his former employer in his books and magazine pieces.

"They turn it around in 24 - or if needed - a couple of hours," he told me.

CIA spokesman George Little denied the agency was singling out Lee.

"That's not true at all," Little said. "For former CIA officers with no contractual relationship with the agency, the sole yardstick for pre-publication review is classification."

But Washington attorney Mark Zaid, who specializes in pre-publication review cases - among other gripes of current and ex-CIA employees - told me he's seen a trend toward more censorship.

"It's far more routine now that I have to challenge the PRB's censorship actions on behalf of my clients," Zaid said in an e-mail, "and the inconsistencies in its decisions are unbelievably frustrating and often incomprehensible at times."  


Eight Years and Counting. The Shawal Valley in North Waziristan, a tribal region on the Afghanistan/Pakistan border where Osama Bin Laden is believed to be hiding. He is still alive. That is the one thing that can be said about Osama bin Laden these days with any degree of certainty. At least, he was still alive at the beginning of the month, when an audio tape was delivered to al-Jazeera bearing words in a familiar voice.

The tape, aired by al-Jazeera on 3 June, is genuine, according to British and US intelligence, and his references to recent events are proof that it is contemporary. It is a muttered sermon, mainly devoted to decrying Barack Obama on the day the new US president arrived in Saudi Arabia on the start of a Middle East tour - to sow "seeds of hatred", Bin Laden claimed.

But that is where the certainty ends, the facts peter out and the guesswork begins. We do not know what he looks like these days. His last 10 messages have been audio only. There has been no video of him since September 2007, and even that raised questions over exactly when it had been made.

Bin Laden may be incapacitated by injury or disease - persistent rumors have him suffering from kidney failure - or he may have shorn off his trademark beard and had plastic surgery, for all we know. After all, Radovan Karadzic - until last July, a fellow fugitive on the world's most-wanted list - managed to live for years in plain view of his fellow countrymen, disguised until his arrest by no more than a bushy white beard and a new-age top-knot.

It has been nearly eight years since George Bush declared Bin Laden "wanted, dead or alive" and described his capture as a national priority. Bush is now back in Texas, living a low-profile post-presidential existence. He has been photographed lugging shopping bags around and been heard complaining about picking up his own dog's droppings. Bin Laden, meanwhile, remains as elusive as ever, despite the billion-dollar, multi-force, multinational, state-of-the-art aerial drone search - the most extensive and expensive manhunt in history.

The best guess of the intelligence services in Washington and London is that the 52-year-old Saudi has hidden himself somewhere in the forbidding rocky expanse of North Waziristan, a semi-autonomous tribal region along Pakistan's border with Afghanistan.

The Afghan frontier, a 1,550-mile stretch of rock and desert, contains other possible boltholes. Captured al-Qaida members have placed him further north in Chitral, a peaceful district amid the high peaks of the Hindu Kush, cut off by snow for four months of the year. That may explain a recent surge in CIA interest in the area. A mysterious new base, believed to be a surveillance station, is under construction near the 13,000ft-high Boroghil Pass, close to the Afghan border. Locals widely believe it to be American-funded.

"The building is totally out of proportion to anything else up there," says local hotelier Siraj ul Mulk, a member of the traditional royal family of Chitral. To discourage visitors, the tourism ministry has stopped issuing trekking passes for the area, and an annual yak polo festival has been cancelled.

Ul Mulk says it is plausible that someone such as Bin Laden could hide in the mountain areas of Chitral, but not in the villages. "Very little remains a secret around here. In their books, the British mentioned that you don't need spies around here because the locals will come and tell you."

In February this year, an academic team at the University of California claimed to have narrowed down the search with the use of satellite imagery and "fundamental principles of geography". They went as far as to call for a search of three walled compounds in the Kurram tribal area. "If he's still alive, he honestly could be sitting there right now," the lead author of the study, Thomas Gillespie, claimed at the time, though it is not clear whether the recommendation has ever been followed.

The area the UCLA geography department pinpointed is less than 20km south of Tora Bora, the cave-riddled Afghan mountain where US-led forces thought they had Bin Laden and the remains of al-Qaida pinned down in December 2001, only for him to slip through their grasp and disappear. A last intercepted radio message on 14 December marks the last time the west had a definitive fix on his whereabouts.

"It's very hard to find just one person. Look, it took the Israelis 15 years to find Eichmann," says Peter Bergen, a journalist, terrorism expert and one of the few westerners to have actually met Bin Laden - he interviewed him in 1997. His personal guess is that the Saudi construction heir turned jihadist has sought sanctuary high up in the Hindu Kush, in Chitral or the nearby Bajaur tribal agency.

The general consensus that Bin Laden is hiding along the highland border is in part based on logic and personal history. The terrain is ideal for a fugitive accustomed to deprivation, riddled with crags and caves and vertical rock walls. In satellite pictures, the region looks like silver foil that has been crumpled, then scorched. This is Bin Laden's comfort zone, where he enjoys the protection of Pashtunwali, the honour code that makes the local tribes fiercely protective of their guests.

American and British intelligence think Bin Laden is in North Waziristan, in part because he has particularly good friends there. He has a long history with Jalaluddin Haqqani and his son Sirajuddin, a pair of formidable warriors whose militant empire stretches from Khost in Afghanistan to Miram Shah in North Waziristan. The links go back to the 80s, when the inexperienced son of a Saudi millionaire teamed up with the Haqqanis to fight the jihad against Soviet troops occupying Afghanistan. Bin Laden built his first base - the "Lion's Den" - on Haqqani turf.

There are scraps of intelligence to suggest that he has returned to these jihadist roots. Captured al-Qaida members have pointed to the remote mountain passes and recalled sightings, or rumours of sightings. Vincent Cannistrano, a former head of operations in the CIA's counter-terrorism centre, says there have been several intelligence reports that Bin Laden was in North Waziristan or nearby, "although none of the information is 'real time' ... It's always: 'He was there, but we're not sure today,'" Cannistrano says.

The CIA has claimed that its intelligence has been good enough to pick off other senior al-Qaida figures. A Washington Post report earlier this month quoted US and Pakistani officials as claiming that half the 20 "high-value targets" on the American hit list had been killed by Predator and Reaper drone aircraft armed with Hellfire missiles. But the missiles have also killed dozens of Pakistani civilians, deepening resentment of the faceless foreign presence in the sky.

Yet despite all the missiles rained down on the tribal areas, the US has never claimed to have even come close to Bin Laden himself. It is as if he represents another level of difficulty as a target.

"He and the senior al-Qaida leadership have become incredibly cautious. They have no affinity for any kind of technology. They use couriers to send messages," says Seth Jones, a US counter-terrorism expert who has just written a book about the Afghan war entitled In the Graveyard of Empires. "Pashtunwali makes it an extremely hard network to penetrate. You need information, and that means capturing people who know his mode of operations. That is a really small number of people."

A western diplomat with access to intelligence in Islamabad explains the limitations of a hi-tech manhunt. "The impressive stuff you see in the movies does exist," he says, describing the ability to watch live satellite feeds of attacks on remote compounds. "But that technology can only be deployed for limited periods of time and depends on obtaining good, timely information. That's much harder to come by."

There are also political limitations. Pakistan's Inter Services Intelligence agency (ISI) has strong historical linkages with Bin Laden's North Waziristan protectors, the Haqqani network. The ISI considers Haqqani a useful tool: last summer, US officials accused the Pakistani spies of working with him to bomb the Indian embassy in Kabul. And so, while Pakistani officials agree that Bin Laden is on the border, they tend to argue he is on the Afghan side.

Bin Laden's recent preference for producing audio tapes rather than videos could be testament to his risk-averse nature. Video cameras could require another set of hands and eyes, and the setting and his appearance could give away minute clues.

Bin Laden has been helped by the fact that his pursuers have frequently been distracted and cautious. At Tora Bora, in the last days of 2001, Washington ignored the advice of US agents and officers on the ground and relied on local allied militias to block the escape route of al-Qaida survivors into Pakistan. They failed. Soon afterwards, America's robot Predators and human manhunters were dispatched on another assignment, to Iraq.

"It's just a small number of specialists that can detect and track down individuals, and the specialist intelligence personnel and the elite special forces were all sent from the Afghan theatre to Iraq," says Rohan Gunaratna, an expert on international terrorism based in Singapore. "If that had not happened the world would have celebrated Osama bin Laden's death or capture."

Attempts were made late in the Bush presidency to focus efforts once more on tracking down Bin Laden. The CIA relaunched the manhunt in an operation codenamed Cannonball in 2006, sending dozens of agents to Pakistan. But the initiative was paralysed from the start by internal disagreements over whether and when to send special forces into the tribal areas on raids.

Last year, the New York Times reported that the Pentagon had drawn up new orders to dispatch special forces units into the tribal areas, but that the final green light was never given because of continued infighting in the last months of the Bush administration.

The election of Barack Obama and his administration's focus on Afghanistan and Pakistan has led to another attempt at making a fresh start. According to British and American sources, the new manhunt is a joint venture between special forces and the CIA, under CIA direction, and built around information-sharing with a select group of officials from Pakistan's ISI, long suspected of being infiltrated by jihadist sympathisers. It will continue to be spearheaded by unmanned Predators and Reapers, with special forces teams on constant standby should "actionable intelligence" become suddenly available.

Meanwhile, it is hoped that the Pakistani army will somehow flush Bin Laden out in ground operations with the help of US intelligence. Last week, the troops were sent into South Waziristan, against Baitullah Mehsud, a Taliban leader also suspected of ties to al-Qaida.

But even if the hunters get lucky and capture or kill Bin Laden (the latter is widely considered to be more likely - his bodyguards are reputedly under orders to kill him rather than let him be captured), would it make us any safer? David Benest, a former officer in the Parachute Regiment who served as a British counter-insurgency adviser in Kabul last year, says it would serve little purpose.

"He is in a long line of Muslim philosophers/propagandists that stretches back over centuries and it is his ideas that need to be attacked and destroyed rather than himself per se," Benest argues. "Any action is bound to merely increase antipathy against the 'Satanic west'. The UK aim is very clear - to stop him and al-Qaida coming back into Afghanistan, and the hope that the Pakistanis will deal with him. I agree with that."

Most al-Qaida watchers believe that Ayman al-Zawahiri and another Egyptian, Mustafa Abu al-Yazid, alias Sheikh Saeed, have taken over the day-to-day running of al-Qaida's operations, with Bin Laden elevated to an inspirational figurehead role. But the Obama administration clearly believes there is still a point in going after the figurehead, and Bergen, now working as an analyst at the New America Foundation in Washington, agrees.

"I think it would make a difference," Bergen says. "To the extent that the jihadists have a leader, it is him. The fact that jihadists are turning up in Somalia has a lot to do with him saying they should go. There is a relationship between what he says and what these people do. As they say in the American military, he provides 'commander's intent', and he makes that intent pretty clear". [Borger&Walsh/Guardian/25June2009] 

A New Approach to Intelligence? Over the course of his time in office, George W. Bush confronted the challenges of two wars, the pursuit of al-Qaeda, and the proliferation of dangerous weapons technologies. To address these challenges, his administration expanded the scope of the accepted methods of intelligence collection, authorizing controversial practices such as rendition and waterboarding.

Eight years later, Bush's successor, Barack Obama, faces these same concerns, but has framed his approach to intelligence collection very differently. Yet although he has criticized the Bush administration for "politicizing" the country's intelligence apparatus and sanctioning coercive methods of interrogation, the new president has made only minimal substantive change in the U.S. intelligence community.

Substantive change to the structure of the US intelligence community and the principles upon which it is constructed will only come if Obama articulates a clear and coherent philosophical basis for the changes he seeks.

The first line of cleavage between the two administrations is the question of the proper degree of separation between intelligence collection and policymaking. The Bush administration rejected the idea that analysts could produce dispassionate and disinterested intelligence, and encouraged policymakers to search through the fragmentary evidence to find pieces that offered support for its predetermined objectives. The most infamous case of this "cherry-picking" of intelligence occurred during the lead-up to the Iraq War, when the Office of Special Plans scoured the available data for instances of Iraqi sponsorship of terrorism or possession of weapons of mass destruction. There was no attempt to divorce intelligence collection from consumption.

At the other end of the spectrum, during his campaign Obama repeatedly emphasized "getting politics out of intelligence." In his view, the intelligence community should be an independent source of objective analysis. However, this ideal is more difficult to achieve than it first appears. Although it's possible to segregate personnel, the same is not true of their functions. Analysis and decision are interactive processes. On the one hand, the tendency for analysts is to avoid making intelligence assessments that conflict with policy options that have already been chosen. On the other, leaders instinctively downplay reports that challenge an ongoing policy.

Still, there are measures that can be taken to depoliticize intelligence. During his campaign, for instance, President Obama promised to give the director of national intelligence (DNI) a fixed term. Although this proposal has yet to be enacted, it would give the intelligence community more independence. The DNI would become more like the chairman of the Federal Reserve rather than a cabinet secretary serving at the pleasure of the president. To many observers, the most opportune time to institute this promise would have been when Obama nominated former Navy Admiral Dennis Blair to serve as DNI and California Representative Leon Panetta to head the CIA. However, no mention was made of a establishing a fixed term for the DNI. Whether or not Obama follows through on this piece of campaign rhetoric remains to be seen.

The other main divergence in Bush and Obama's approaches to intelligence was over the role moral concerns should play in intelligence collection. Members of the Bush administration repeatedly emphasized the need to prevent terrorists from attacking the United States at any cost, a view recently reiterated by former Vice President Dick Cheney: "To make certain our country never again faced such a day of horror [as 9/11] we...committed to using every asset to take down [terrorist] networks." Thus, starting in 2002, with the approval of President Bush and the Justice Department, the CIA used intense physical pressure against around 30 al-Qaeda prisoners. Many legal authorities and human rights groups have described some of these methods, including waterboarding, as torture. In 2006, President Bush also acknowledged the CIA use of black sites in other countries to avoid laws about harsh interrogation on U.S. territory.

In contrast, during his presidential campaign Obama constantly reiterated the need to restore "American values" to the fight against terrorism by limiting use of coercive force against prisoners. He denounced the interrogation methods permitted under the Bush administration, spoke of the need for all U.S. interrogators to follow guidelines set out in the Army Field Manual, and pledged to end the practice of rendition. Casting the matter as a practical as well as moral issue, Obama stated: "We cannot win a war unless we maintain the high ground and keep the people on our side...because the administration decided to take the low road, our troops have more enemies."

Accordingly, during his first week in office Obama dismantled the controversial intelligence programs authorized by the Bush administration, particularly the CIA's use of harsh interrogation techniques such as waterboarding. Administration officials, including CIA Director Panetta, have vowed to continue the pursuit of al-Qaeda and its allies, but have stated that interrogators will use methods in line with the Army Field Manual and not physical force. Controversy arose, however, when Obama released classified Justice Department memos from the Bush administration that discussed the use of waterboarding. The release of the memos led to many calls for the prosecution of the interrogators. But thus far Obama has opposed the idea of legally prosecuting CIA personnel that committed waterboarding, based on the legal advice of superiors. While the topic has been subject to heated internal debate within the White House, the president's stance seeks to reconcile the tension between his desire to break with the Bush administration policies and his concern over alienating an agency with a central role in the campaign against al-Qaeda.

Obama has also found it difficult to shut down the CIA's detention program. As a candidate, he denounced the Bush administration's treatment of prisoners. During his first week in office he issued an executive order closing the detention facility at Guant�namo Bay. However, although the CIA decommissioned the secret overseas sites where it held al-Qaeda prisoners in April, Obama has found himself at odds with his own party on closing Guant�namo. On May 20, 2009, the Senate voted to keep the detention facility open for the foreseeable future and forbade the transfer of any detainees to facilities in the United States. Some other countries have volunteered to house them. Italy has accepted three detainees; the Pacific island of Palau will be taking up to 17 Uighur Guant�namo detainees, whom the United States thinks might be tortured if they return to China. But many more detainees remain in limbo. Meeting resistance at home from lawmakers unwilling to allow them into the United States and finding it difficult to locate countries that will take them in, Obama's efforts to dismantle detainee programs have this been stalled.

The tension between balancing national security concerns with civil liberties also arose on the domestic front. Maintaining their emphasis on combating terrorists at any cost, Bush administration officials, particularly Cheney, initiated a controversial wiretapping program after the September 11 attacks. In 2002, Bush issued an executive order that authorized the National Security Agency (NSA) to conduct surveillance of communications involving any party believed to be outside the United States - even if the other end of the communication lay within the country - without obtaining a warrant as stipulated by the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). When the program became public, critics called it a violation of FISA as well as Fourth Amendment rights against warrantless search. The Bush administration maintained that the authorized intercepts were not domestic but rather foreign intelligence integral to the conduct of war. They claimed that the subsequent passage of the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Terrorists implicitly superseded the warrant requirements of FISA.

The FISA Amendments Act of 2008 belatedly resolved the issue by amending the 1978 legislation and substituting the requirement of a warrant to conduct surveillance with a system of NSA (National Security Agency) internal controls. The bill also allowed the monitoring of all electronic communications of people in the United States without a court order or oversight, so long as it is not targeted at one particular person "reasonably believed to be" inside the country. It includes a divisive element that Mr. Bush had deemed essential: legal immunity for the phone companies that cooperated in the NSA wiretapping program.

This bill was a delicate campaign issue for then-Senator Obama. During his campaign for the Democratic nomination, he had opposed giving legal immunity to the telecommunications corporations that took part in the NSA wiretapping program. But in July 2008, he ended up voting for what he called "an improved but imperfect bill." Obama argued that the new law reaffirmed FISA as the exclusive means to conduct surveillance, one that the president cannot circumvent: "Given the legitimate threats we face, providing effective intelligence collection tools with appropriate safeguards is too important to delay. So I support the compromise, but do so with a firm pledge that as president, I will carefully monitor the program." The left castigated the bill as meaningless, since the exclusivity provision was in the 1978 act. Seeking to avoid Republican accusations that he was weak on foreign policy, Obama made one of his most substantive breaks with his liberal base and adopted the Bush administration's emphasis on national security concerns.

The new law hasn't succeeded as well as Obama had hoped. A periodic Justice Department review found in April that the National Security Agency had intercepted private e-mail messages and phone calls of Americans in recent months, on a scale that went beyond the broad legal limits established by Congress last year. While still unclear, the issue appears focused in part on technical problems in the NSA's ability to distinguish between communications inside the United States and those overseas, as it uses its access to American telecommunications companies' fiber-optic lines to intercept calls and e-mail messages. According to intelligence officials, the problems grew out of changes enacted by the FISA Amendments Act. Justice Department officials took comprehensive steps to correct the situation and bring the program into compliance with court orders, but this incident highlights the fact that privacy concerns still abound.

What, ultimately, should be the goal of U.S. intelligence-gathering? With its chief focus on the Global War on Terror, the Bush administration viewed intelligence agencies as tools to defeat terrorist opponents. The agencies, it argued, needed wide latitude in the methods they used in the fight against al-Qaeda. Yet this led to contentious debates over domestic surveillance and disturbing intelligence activities. Obama, having to deal with the fallout from the Bush years, has unsurprisingly attempted to orient the U.S. intelligence community in a different direction. At present he has tended to define his goals in opposition to those of his predecessor, and has given no coherent formulation of his view on the proper use of intelligence since assuming office. Thus, while Obama generally views the proper goals of the intelligence apparatus very differently than Bush, tangible reform has yet to take place.

To refocus U.S. intelligence toward its proper mission of preserving civil liberties and the rule of law, Obama needs to articulate a clear vision of how intelligence can be used to preserve and promote the "American values" he spoke of during his campaign. So far, his attempts to do so have been haphazard. He has not ruled out criminal prosecutions of those who authorized the constitutional wrongdoing - although it remains unclear whether such prosecutions will take place - stating that no one should be above the law. Yet, despite pressure from Senate Judiciary Committee Chair Patrick Leahy, Obama has opposed establishing a "truth commission" on the grounds that a backward-looking investigation would not be productive. However, in the wake of the abuses that took place under the previous administration, it may be useful to hold a larger national discussion about the uses of U.S. intelligence, like in the mid-1970s during the Church Committee hearings. Such an initiative would make more information public and promote true reform, which the U.S. intelligence community has yet to experience. [Fitzgerald/FPIF/16June2009] 

John Rizzo: The Most Influential Career Lawyer in CIA History. In his memoir, former CIA Director George J. Tenet described the agency's first course of action in a crisis. "Despite what Hollywood might have you believe," Tenet wrote, "you don't call in the tough guys; you call in the lawyers."

For more than three decades, that almost always has meant making a call to John A. Rizzo.

The acting general counsel at the CIA, Rizzo has guided generations of agency leaders on the legal contours of clandestine operations and the often-ensuing investigations.

At CIA headquarters, he is known for his eye-watering wardrobe - with ties, cuff links and suspenders colored like scoops of sherbet. His legal approach, however, always accommodated shades of gray, earning him a reputation among spies as an ally who understood the murky morality of what they do.

When he retires this summer, Rizzo will go out as the most influential career lawyer in CIA history, having risen to the top of the agency's legal ranks while leaving his mark on classified programs from proxy wars in Central America to Predator strikes in Pakistan.

But Rizzo, 61, will not be departing entirely on his own terms. He was never given the formal title of general counsel - despite holding the job in an acting capacity for more than six years - because of Senate objections to his role in the CIA's use of severe interrogation methods.

He probably will be followed by questions over how well the CIA, and the country, were served by his decisions. And he leaves behind an agency battered by criticism, accused of using torture by the nation's president.

Rizzo's supporters say he has been made a scapegoat.

"In many ways John was sort of martyred to political correctness for doing the hard mission for the agency," said former CIA Director Porter J. Goss, who described Rizzo as a "rock solid" advisor and pushed his nomination to be general counsel.

But others questioned Rizzo's approach, saying he often was focused on what could be interpreted as legal rather than what was right.

"John was kind of the legal enabler of the agency," said a senior CIA official who worked with Rizzo and requested anonymity when discussing the agency. "His approach was always to find a way legally for the agency to do what it wanted to do."

Rizzo declined requests for comment.

Even as the interrogation controversy escalated over the last three years, Rizzo's name was rarely mentioned among those of other lawyers, including John C. Yoo and Jay S. Bybee, who were more closely associated with the program.

But that changed when the White House released Justice Department memos in April arguing that waterboarding and other brutal methods did not constitute torture. Rizzo's name was at the top of each memo, making clear his role in requesting those controversial rulings.

Rizzo had never dealt with legal questions about interrogation until officials from the agency's Counterterrorism Center approached him in 2002 with a list of techniques they wanted to employ to get a suspected Al Qaeda captive, Abu Zubaydah, to talk. Among them was waterboarding, in which a prisoner is strapped to a plank and doused to make him feel he is drowning.

If Rizzo was troubled by the proposal, he didn't say so, according to officials familiar with the matter.

Instead, he set about making sure the agency had legal cover for the inevitable day those interrogation methods would come to light.

Rizzo had lived through earlier scandals and was acutely aware of the stakes.

In a 2007 videotaped discussion with students at a law school in Minnesota, Rizzo said his greatest regret was that he had not been "more aggressive or intrusive" in trying to uncover or prevent the CIA's involvement in the Iran-Contra arms-for-hostages scandal of the 1980s.Rizzo kept close watch on the interrogation program. Once, during a 2005 trip by senior CIA executives to Kabul, Afghanistan, Rizzo disappeared from the crowd after dinner with Afghan intelligence officials.

It wasn't until the next day, one participant remembered, that Rizzo revealed he had arranged a midnight trip to the Salt Pit, a secret CIA prison on the outskirts of the city, to see detention operations up close.

A CIA detainee had died at the site in 2002. But Rizzo came away newly assured that the operation was well-run, former officials said.

Rizzo grew up in Boston, the son of a department store executive. He was a bright student with a small frame and an easy way with people. It was after joining a fraternity at Brown University that he acquired his trademark taste for flamboyant clothes.

He's a fan of pinstriped Ralph Lauren suits, Thomas Pink ties and Armani shoes. Former CIA Director Michael V. Hayden joked that if Rizzo "could get away with it, he would come to work in spats."

After law school at George Washington University, Rizzo joined the CIA in 1976, just as the agency was emerging from scathing congressional investigations into Nixon-era abuses.

Within three years, Rizzo was designated the attorney for the Directorate of Operations, the CIA branch that conducts clandestine missions. His predecessor had lasted only a year, but Rizzo rapidly established a rapport with the officers of the "DO."

Being a CIA lawyer involves navigating issues that tend not to come up in law school. One of Rizzo's first tasks was devising rules for CIA operatives in Central America, where the agency was backing anti-communist rebels.

At issue was whether the CIA could have informants on its payroll who were working for death squads. In a classic Rizzo ruling, he concluded it was acceptable as long as the source wasn't carrying out assassinations himself.

If the informant was tapped to pull the trigger, Rizzo came up with what he called the "shoot in the air scenario," meaning that the CIA hire could go ahead with the assignment as long as he made sure that he missed.

A fan of spy novels and movies, Rizzo has Zelig-like connections to some of the more intriguing episodes of CIA history.

When then-CIA Director William J. Casey collapsed at agency headquarters shortly before he was scheduled to testify before Congress on the Iran-Contra scandal, it was Rizzo who was waiting outside Casey's office.

He was there to prepare Casey for the hearing, but the director was taken away by paramedics, and subsequently died of brain cancer.

Rizzo was never regarded as an ideologue. But after the Sept. 11 attacks, he found himself surrounded by Bush administration attorneys who were committed to pushing the limits of executive power and granting the CIA unprecedented detention and interrogation authority.

Some former colleagues said they are puzzled by Rizzo's acquiescence.

"Maybe Rizzo didn't count on the boundaries changing as the perceived threat from Al Qaeda decreased or as political postures changed," said John Radsan, who served as assistant general counsel at the CIA from 2002 to 2004. "Or maybe Rizzo factored this in, and accepted the consequences."

Defending his decisions, Rizzo has told colleagues that although the CIA has faced criticism for its interrogation methods, failing to prevent a follow-on attack might have led to its dismantling.

Rizzo appears to have succeeded in inoculating agency employees from prosecution. But critics, including President Obama, contend that the cost to the country was considerable.

As the controversy escalated, Rizzo worked to contain the damage. Goss said that he ordered the interrogation program halted in late 2005, based largely on Rizzo's advice. A year later, it was Rizzo who helped arrange for the Red Cross to gain access to CIA detainees after their transfer to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Nevertheless, Rizzo paid a price. He had hoped to become the first career lawyer to be named general counsel at the CIA. But he was forced to withdraw after members of the Senate Intelligence Committee made it clear that if they were to hold a vote, Rizzo would lose.

In his confirmation hearing, Rizzo frustrated lawmakers by refusing to disavow the infamous Justice Department memo arguing that torture had to involve physical pain "equivalent in intensity" to organ failure, or even death.

The memo was "an aggressive, expansive reading" of the law, Rizzo said. "But I can't say that I had any specific objections to any specific parts of it."

The man nominated to replace Rizzo, former Justice Department lawyer Stephen W. Preston, was similarly reluctant to denounce the agency's methods during his confirmation hearing last month.

Repeatedly pressed on whether waterboarding constituted torture, Preston replied, "I have not reached that conclusion."

Even so, Preston was confirmed and is expected to move into Rizzo's office on the seventh floor of the CIA headquarters building this week. [Miller/LATimes/29June2009]


CIA Invests in Open Source Enterprise Search, by Dave Rosenberg. If any organization needs to make sense of unstructured data it's the government - especially agencies like the CIA and other intelligence groups that comb through a myriad of disparate information on an hourly basis.

Last week, In-Q-Tel, the technology arm of the CIA, invested in Lucid Imagination, which provides support, maintenance, and add-on software for Apache Lucene and Solr. According to Lucid, the Lucene/Solr technology is downloaded more than 9,000 times per day, and more than 4,000 organizations are using the software for enterprise search.

I've wondered aloud quite a few times as to whether or not open-source projects (and specifically Apache projects) can turn into businesses or if they are simply the cogs and wheels that make other products function better (aka the Oracle syndrome).

I probably would have argued that enterprise search would fall into one of those no-man's lands where the technology is important but not quite a standalone business. There has been a huge amount of venture capital investment in search but few big winners in the category.

But the investment from In-Q-Tel adds some credence to the value of the function as well as the technology in the respect that the government is actually using the software and not just making an investment as we see in the venture capital world. Lucene and Solr are "sufficiently complex" open-source products that require a commercial entity to support ongoing efforts once they are adopted. This gives Lucid a legitimate shot at building a business.

Stephen Arnold highlights three interesting points about the investment. From his story on the topic:

* First, the U.S. government appears to perceive significant potential for Lucene/Solr adoption within its government partners. Several of these entities have already been using the technology and require more reliable, predictable support and services for better risk management. Lucid Imagination provides the commercial backing IQT's partners need in order to deploy Lucene/Solr in mission-critical applications.

* Second, in today's business climate, open-source solutions provide one way to tap into a broad community and its programming expertise. Important innovations often bubble up from open source, thus reducing the time between a good idea and a concrete implementation of a function or feature. Some proprietary systems impose a "time friction" on licensees.

* Third, open source allows some applications to reduce or eliminate what I call the "one way street" that commercial software often requires of licensees. Flexibility can deliver both financial and technical advantages in my opinion. In my experience, it can be time consuming and expensive to "get information out" of some commercial systems or expensive to figure out how to tap or repurpose a proprietary content processing system's outputs.

I would use the same logic for Cloudera and Hadoop (also an Apache project). A complicated piece of software needs to have an organization that stands behind it and makes users successful. I wouldn't be surprised to see Cloudera receive an investment from a government agency using Hadoop.

Generally speaking, this bodes well for open source and exemplifies the ideal that users support projects by giving back code, dollars, or development time in order to make a better product. [Rosenberg/Cnet/22June2009] 

Board Overseeing US Intelligence Practices Still Without Members, by Joseph Fitsanakis. Intelligence insiders in the US are beginning to wonder why US President Barack Obama has yet to appoint any members to the President's Intelligence Advisory Board (PIAB).

The PIAB, first established in 1956 by President Eisenhower, is tasked with conducting executive oversight of US intelligence practices. Its sensitive role is accentuated by its main focus, which is to alert the White House about US intelligence activities that may be illegal or may in any way go beyond Presidential authorization. This part of its mission makes the Board extremely critical in ensuring adequate executive oversight of the US intelligence community.

But now, lacking any members whatsoever, the PIAB is being managed by its administrative staff and is in a sort of "autopilot" mode, according to its counsel, Homer Pointer, who spoke to the Federation of American Scientists' Secrecy News.

Of course, even if Barack Obama decides to appoint new members, it is questionable whether the Board will regain some of its powers with which it was equipped in the late 1970s. It is well known that the previous US administration severely weakened the Board's authority.

Will the new President resuscitate the PIAB? Early indications are not positive. Last January, there were rumors that the Obama transition team wanted Mike McConnel, Director of National Intelligence (DNI) under George W. Bush, to join the Board. One may be excused for questioning McConnel's intelligence oversight credentials. As intelNews readers know, back in 2008, DNI McConnel secretly met with Barack Obama, and demanded assurances from the then President Elect that his administration would not pursue a legal inquiry into the CIA's use of torture against "war on terrorism" detainees. [Fitsanakis/WorldPress/19June2009] 


Research Requests

Hitler and Syphilis. Operative who came up with original information that Hitler had syphilis of the brain in 1942, seeking operatives who confirmed that information in Europe with Hitler's doctor's documents, from 1942 onwards, for theatrical feature film based on true events. Contact Doris Chu, P.O. Box 15184, Honolulu, HI 96830 USA. Email: with contact information. Phone: (808) 636-1300 Weekdays Hawaii Time 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.



Saturday, 27 June 2009 - Northampton, MA - AFIO New England Meeting HAS BEEN POSTPONED. New date will be announced later

7 July 2009, 07:30 - 08:45 a.m. -- Arlington, VA -- The National Intelligence Education Foundation holds breakfast meeting featuring LTG, Chief of Intel Staff/ODNI

This is a Post-Graduate breakfast lecture. Details and registration at:

16 July 2009 - Boston, MA - CIRA New England Chapter hosts luncheon meeting. The New England Chapter of the Central Intelligence Retirees Association [CIRA] will feature a Pinkerton CI Operations director. Event will be at Hampshire House. For more info contact Dick Gay, VP CIRA/NE, 207-374-2169

20 - 24 July 2009 - Alexandria, VA - Espionage Investigations and Interviewing Techniques - Course 518
This course is designed to provide an introduction to the complexities of and the decision making processes associated with investigating and prosecuting espionage cases in the United States in the 21st Century. The course examines the psychology of espionage and the basis for opening espionage investigations. It explains the evolution of key legal and policy decisions associated with prosecuting espionage cases. The course provides tools for conducting successful counterintelligence interviews. These tools include a self assessment of the interviewer's behavioral skills; counterintelligence interviewing techniques; detecting deception during interviews; questioning techniques; and practical exercises in interviewing espionage suspects. This course provides espionage investigators in the US national security community a deeper understanding of the status of counterespionage today, and their individual roles in the protection of our nation's most vital secrets, plans, and programs. (5 days)

AGENDA Monday, 20 July 2009, 8:00a-4:00p - Alexandria, VA - Day 1 of 5 - at the CI Centre, Professor Connie Allen- Seminar Introduction and Objectives; The Psychology of Espionage; Anatomy of Espionage; Anatomy of a Sting

Tuesday, 21 July 2009, 8:00a-4:00p - Alexandria, VA - Day 2 of 5 - CI Centre Professors John Martin and Connie Allen - Legal Issues: Understanding past espionage cases which established case law for espionage violations and how these individuals have been exposed; Corroboration: Kampiles; Agent of a foreign power: 1941 case; How long can you talk with a suspect: Pelton; The John Walker case and others; Failures and mistakes encountered during espionage investigations: Cook, Smith, and Koecher cases

Wednesday, 22 July 2009, 8:00a-11:00a - Alexandria, VA - Day 3 of 5 - CI Centre Professor Tawfik Hamid Interviewing an Islamist Terrorist/Extremist Who Belongs to a Jihadist Group or Al-Qaeda Style Organization; - 11:00a-4:00p CI Centre Professor Sue Adams: Counterintelligence Interviewing Techniques; Self Assessment for Interviewers - DISC Behavioral Styles; DISC Behavioral Styles and CI Interviewing Techniques: Rapport Building Skills

Thursday, 23 July 2009, 8:00a-4:00p - Alexandria, VA - Day 4 of 5 - CI Centre Professor Sue Adams - Detecting Deception During Interviews: Nonverbal Clues to Deception, Verbal Clues to Deception; Deception and Questioning Techniques

Friday, 24 July 2009, 8:00a-4:00p - Alexandria, VA - Day 5 of 5 - CI Centre Professor Sue Adams - 8:00a-4:00p Interviewing Suspects: Theme Development for Espionage Suspects; Interview Plans: Interviewing Suspects; Practical Exercises

TO REGISTER FOR THIS SPECIAL COURSE: A client has allowed us to open up available seats to individuals who hold a current SECRET clearance to attend their running of this course the week of 20-24 July 2009 at the CI Centre in Alexandria, VA. The cost of this five-day course for government attendees is $2,618.70 per person; for corporate attendees is $3,045 per person. To register, fill out this form, or contact Adam Hahn at 703-642-7454.

28 July 2009 - Washington, D.C. - The July Defense Intelligence Forum will be sponsored jointly by DIAA and DACOR. It will meet at DACOR Bacon House, 1801 F Street, NW. Registration will begin and cash bar will open at 1200. Lunch will be at 1230. The program will start at about 1245. DACOR is an easy walk from Farragut West and Farragut North Metro stations. Several parking garages are nearby.
The speaker will be LTG Patrick M. Hughes (USA, Ret), who will speak on the dilemma and dynamics of growing global instability. General Hughes is on the DIAA board of directors and is a DACOR member. A former director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, he retired after 35 years of Army service. He returned to government in 2005 as Assistant Secretary for Information Analysis (Chief of Intelligence) at the Department of Homeland Security. He is now Corporate Vice President for Intelligence and Counterterrorism at L-3 Communications.
DACOR members will make reservations directly with DACOR. All others send by 20 July a check for $25 per person to DIAA, 256 Morris Creek Road, Cullen, Virginia 23934. Give the name, association (AFIO, DIAA, FAOA, NMIA, etc.), email address, and telephone number for each person.

Wednesday, 29 July 2009; 6:30 pm - More Sex(pionage) - Continued Tales of Spies, Lies, and Naked Thighs [at Spy Museum] "God gave me both a brain and a body, and I shall use them both…”—Rose O’Neal Greenhow, Confederate Spy
It’s one of the oldest tricks of the trade: sexpionage. From ancient intrigues to current schemes, spies, counterspies, and terrorists may conduct their undercover activities under the covers! International Spy Museum Board Member and author H. Keith Melton will reveal how seduction is used as a tool to attract and manipulate assets, to coerce and compromise targets, and to control spies in both reality and fiction. Featuring authentic KGB sexual entrapment videos and newly-released technical details of the infamous Russian “honey traps,” Melton will tell all about the spies who stop at nothing to get their man—or woman! For your further titillation, the country’s leading intelligence bibliographer, whose name we cannot disclose, will review the literature of “sex and espionage” with recommendations for further reading.
18 and older only.
Where: International Spy Museum, 800 F St NW, Washington, DC, Gallery Place/Chinatown Metrorail Station
Tickets: $20; Advance Registration required. Tickets are non-refundable and do not include admission to the International Spy Museum. To register:

Thursday 30 July 2009, Noon - 1 p.m. - Washington, DC - SPY MASTER: My 32 Years in Intelligence and Espionage Against the West [at the Spy Museum] He was one of the youngest generals in the history of the KGB, and his intelligence career spanned the better part of the Cold War. As deputy resident at the Soviet embassy in Washington, DC, he oversaw Moscow’s spy network in the United States, and as head of KGB foreign counter-intelligence, he directed several Soviet covert actions against the West. In his memoirs, Spymaster, KGB Major General Oleg Kalugin (Ret.) provides an unparalleled look at the inner workings of Moscow’s famed spy agency. Join Kalugin to hear firsthand how he became disillusioned with the Soviet system, fell out with Russian president Vladimir Putin, and what he thinks of recent intelligence riddles from Moscow, including the death of Russian intelligence defector Alexander Litvinenko in London in 2006. Join the author for an informal chat and book signing.
Where: International Spy Museum, 800 F St NW, Washington, DC, Gallery Place/Chinatown Metrorail Station
TICKETS: FREE. No registration required.

1 August 2009 - Viera (Melbourne), FL - The AFIO Florida Satellite Chapter luncheon will feature Captain Richard P. Jeffrey USN Retired, Pearl Harbor survivor. Captain Jeffrey’s account of the attack on Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941 was video-taped by the U.S. National Park Service and is now an Oral History in the archives of the USS Arizona Memorial in the harbor at Pearl where it may be viewed by visitors. Captain Jeffery is a U.S. Navy Academy Class of 1939 graduate. He is a survivor of the 7 December 1941, Pearl Harbor attack, having been an Ensign aboard the Battleship USS Maryland. Later he served on General Eisenhower’s Headquarters Supreme Commander Allied Forces staff in Europe.
The luncheon takes place at the Indian River Colony Club. For further information or reservations contact George Stephenson, Chapter President (321 267-6292) or Donna Czarnecki Chapter Treasurer.

NEW DAY - Monday, 10 August 2009, 6:30 p.m. - Washington, DC - How To Break A Terrorist [at the Spy Museum]. “Respect, rapport, hope, cunning, and deception are our tools."—Matthew Alexander
Interrogation is the ultimate battle of wills. The most expert interrogators have an arsenal of tactics at-the-ready. Gauging their target, they must quickly assess which psychological strategies will work to gain the most reliable results. Air Force officer Matthew Alexander is part of a small group of military interrogators who went to Iraq in 2006 trained to get information without using harsh methods. He sat face-to-face with hardened members of Al Qaeda and convinced them to talk. Alexander, author of How to Break a Terrorist: The U.S. Interrogators Who Used Brains, Not Brutality, to Take Down the Deadliest Man in Iraq, will describe the true story of the critical interrogation he conducted that led to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the leader of Al Qaeda in Iraq. Alexander will share his riveting experiences and reveal what it takes to be a great interrogator.
Where: International Spy Museum, 800 F St NW, Washington, DC, Gallery Place/Chinatown Metrorail Station
TICKETS: $12.50; Advance Registration required. Tickets are non-refundable and do not include admission to the International Spy Museum.
To register:

Thursday, 20 August 2009, Noon - 1 p.m. - Washington, DC - The Rise and Fall of the KGB in America [at the Spy Museum] In 1993, former KGB officer Alexander Vassiliev was permitted unique access to Stalin-era records of Soviet intelligence operations against the United States. The notes Vassiliev took and subsequently made available to Library of Congress historian John Earl Haynes and professor Harvey Klehr, offer unprecedented insight into Soviet espionage in America. Based on this unique historical source, Harvey and Klehr have constructed a shocking, new account of Moscow’s espionage in America. The authors will expose Soviet spy tactics and techniques and shed new light on a number of controversial issues, including Alger Hiss’s cooperation with Soviet intelligence, journalist I.F. Stone’s recruitment and work for the KGB, and Ernest Hemingway’s meeting with KGB agents. Join the author for an informal chat and book signing.
Where: International Spy Museum, 800 F St NW, Washington, DC, Gallery Place/Chinatown Metrorail Station
TICKETS: FREE. No registration required.

13-16 October 2009 - Las Vegas, NV - AFIO National Symposium - Nellis AFB, Creech AFB. Details and registration forthcoming.

AFIO 2009 Fall Convention in Las Vegas, Nevada
13 October to 16 October, 2009
Cold Warriors in the Desert: From Atomic Blasts to Sonic Booms

Symposium will feature presentations on the testing of atomic weapons, airborne reconnaissance platforms, and more. Onsite visits to Nellis Air Force Base - Home of the Fighter Pilot, the U.S. Department of Energy's Nevada Test Site - the former on-continent nuclear weapons proving ground, and Creech Air Force Base - the home of the Predator unmanned aerial vehicles (currently deployed for combat missions in the Middle East, yet piloted from Creech).

Preliminary Agenda HERE for scheduling of your travel

Registration forthcoming

Harrah's Hotel Registration is available now at: Telephone reservations may be made at 800-901-5188. Refer to Group Code SHAIO9 to get the special AFIO rate.

To make hotel reservations online,
go to:
Special AFIO October Symposium Las Vegas rates are available up to Friday, September 11, 2009

For Additional Events two+ months or greater....view our online Calendar of Events


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