AFIO Weekly Intelligence Notes #37-09 dated 6 October 2009

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MQ18 Predator
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MI6 Posts Quiz for Potential Applicants. It is unlikely that James Bond would have taken the online test. The quiz, posted on the SIS's website, poses a range of questions that would-be spies are asked if they are interrogated.

Applicants are then given two minutes to answer the questions, and those who score between three or four out of ten are told they are "more 'oh no' than 00, we're afraid".

"Maintaining a cover story is part of being an Operational Officer," the blurb to the quiz says.

"The (test)... takes you to a very basic scenario involving a simple cover story.

"It's mainly for fun but it may help you decide whether working for SIS appeals to you."

It adds: "It's not a selection tool, although the results should also tell you something about your suitability."

The service, which recently became the centre of a Scotland Yard investigation amid allegations it was complicit in torture, has also offered a range of career options including administrative assistants, technology experts - real-life equivalents of James Bond's 'Q' - and language specialists.

All applicants are warned not to tell anyone they have applied.

A couple of years ago MI6 sought to recruit more women and launched a campaign to emphasize its ''family friendly'' atmosphere.

Test yourself with the quiz below:

Your Cover Story

You're stationed in Transeuratania. You're a vegetarian and the food isn't especially good in Metropoligrad - unlike the coffee, which costs less than a Shilling for a pot at the best hotel. Your name is Stephanie Johnson. You were born on 14th December 1974 in Skegness. At A Level, you gained an A in Geography, an A in French and a B in Economics. You have two sisters and a brother. You studied Geology at university and now work as a Management Consultant for a company called British Coal Associates.


1. What is your name?

A: Joan Stephenson. B: Stephanie Johnston. C: Stephanie Johnson.

2. What is the currency of Transeuratania?

A: Transeuratanian Rouble. B: Transeuratanian Zloty. C: Transeuratanian Shilling.

3. What is your favourite meal?

A. Mushroom Risotto. B: Duck A L'Orange. C: Roasted Vegetables with Lamb.

4. What were your grades at A Level?


5. What company are you working for?


6. What was your degree in?

A: Geology. B: Geography. C: Management.

7. What's your brother's name?

A: John Stephenson. B: John Johnson. C: Stephen Johnston

8. What's your date of birth?

A: December 17th 1974. B: December 14th 1974. C: December 19th 1974.

* Answers: 1 C, 2 C, 3 A, 4 C, 5 C, 6 A, 7 B, 8 B [Hugh/Telegraph/27September2009]

Nuclear Debate Brews: Is Iran Designing Warheads?  When President Obama stood last week with the leaders of Britain and France to denounce Iran's construction of a secret nuclear plant, the Western powers all appeared to be on the same page.

Behind their show of unity about Iran's clandestine efforts to manufacture nuclear fuel, however, is a continuing debate among American, European and Israeli spies about a separate component of Iran's nuclear program: its clandestine efforts to design a nuclear warhead.

The Israelis, who have delivered veiled threats of a military strike, say they believe that Iran has restarted these "weaponization" efforts, which would mark a final step in building a nuclear weapon. The Germans say they believe that the weapons work was never halted. The French have strongly suggested that independent international inspectors have more information about the weapons work than they have made public.

Meanwhile, in closed-door discussions, American spy agencies have stood firm in their conclusion that while Iran may ultimately want a bomb, the country halted work on weapons design in 2003 and probably has not restarted that effort - a judgment first made public in a 2007 National Intelligence Estimate.

The debate, in essence, is a mirror image of the intelligence dispute on the eve of the Iraq war.

This time, United States spy agencies are delivering more cautious assessments about Iran's clandestine programs than their Western European counterparts.

The differing views color how each country perceives the imminence of the Iranian threat and how to deal with it in the coming months, including this week's negotiations in Geneva - the first direct talks between the United States and Iran in nearly 30 years.

In the case of the plant outside Qum, designed for uranium enrichment, some nuclear experts speculate that it is only part of something larger. But a senior American official with access to intelligence about it said he believed the secret plant was itself "the big one," but cautioned that "it's a big country."

This distinction has huge political consequences. If Mr. Obama can convince Israel that the exposure of the Qum plant has dealt a significant setback to the Iranian effort, he may buy some time from the Israelis.

The officials spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were discussing classified intelligence assessments.

Uranium enrichment - the process of turning raw uranium into reactor or bomb fuel - is only one part of building a nuclear weapon, though it is the most difficult step. The two remaining steps are designing and building a warhead, and building a reliable delivery system, like a ballistic missile.

American officials said that Iran halted warhead design efforts in 2003, a conclusion they reached after penetrating Iran's computer networks and gaining access to internal government communications. This judgment became the cornerstone of the 2007 intelligence report, which drew sharp criticism from Europe and Israel, and remains the subject of intense debate.

Disagreeing with the Americans, Israeli intelligence officials say they believe that Iran restarted weapons design work in 2005 on the orders of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the supreme leader. The Americans counter that the Israeli case is flimsy and circumstantial, and that the Israelis cannot document their claim.

German intelligence officials take an even harder line against Iran. They say the weapons work never stopped, a judgment made public last year in a German court case involving shipments of banned technology to Tehran. In recent interviews, German intelligence agencies declined to comment further.

Rolf Mowatt-Larssen, the former head of intelligence at the Department of Energy and a nuclear expert who worked for the C.I.A., said that the apparent differences of opinion among the world's intelligence agencies might boil down to differences of interpretative style, or what he called "tradecraft."

"It's often tradecraft that gets us bollixed up," he said in an interview. "It comes down to interpreting the same data in different ways, in looking at the same information and coming up with different conclusions."

Some Israeli and European officials say the Americans are being overly cautious, having been stung by the Iraq intelligence debacle. The Americans deny this, insisting they are open-minded. One American intelligence official said the view of Iran's weapons design program, "like every analytic judgment, is constantly checked and reassessed in light of new information, which comes in all the time."

Each country bases its view on a combination of satellite imagery, human spies and electronic eavesdropping. And they do not necessarily share it all with one another or with the International Atomic Energy Agency, an investigative arm of the United Nations.

This has created plenty of bad blood with the United Nations agency. The departing chief of the I.A.E.A., Mohamed ElBaradei, recently argued that the case for urgent action against Iran was "hyped." He acknowledged, however, that Iran has refused, for two years, to answer his inspectors' questions about evidence suggesting that it was working on weapons design.

Now some European powers who fought with President George W. Bush over the evidence on Iraq - and were later vindicated by the failure to find unconventional weapons - are pressing Dr. ElBaradei to reveal what his agency has collected on its own, through regular inspections in Iran.

"Why doesn't he provide us with the annexes of his report?" Bernard Kouchner, France's foreign minister, asked last month, referring to material United Nations inspectors are believed to have compiled for internal discussions. Mr. Kouchner said those annexes contained "elements which enable us to ask questions about the reality of an atomic bomb. There are issues of warheads, of transport."

Western intelligence officials now want to determine whether there are even more secret enrichment sites. Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates dodged the question of whether there were additional sites during a television appearance over the weekend. Washington has said there may be more than a dozen sites involved in the nuclear program, though there have been no public indications as to what they are used for.

Graham Allison, the author of "Nuclear Terrorism" and a Harvard professor who focuses on proliferation, said he could not conceive of Iran's building only one such site.

"How likely is it that the Qum facility is all there is? Zero. A prudent manager of a serious program would certainly have a number of sites," he said.

After all, Mr. Allison said, the lesson Iran took away from Israel's destruction of an Iraqi reactor more than 25 years ago is to spread facilities around the country. [Broad&Mazzetti&Sanger/NYTimes/29September2009] 

Studies: No Charges Brought in Most Terror Cases. New studies show that while federal prosecutors are winning increasing numbers of convictions in terrorism cases, they also are declining to bring charges in the overwhelming majority of matters brought to them by the FBI and other law enforcement agencies.

The reports, one released Monday by the nonprofit Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse and the other late last week by the Center on Law and Security of New York University School of Law, show conviction rates of nearly 80 percent in federal cases in which terrorism is charged.

But a 67 percent rate of declined prosecutions found in an analysis of Department of Justice records done by TRAC, an affiliate of Syracuse University, has prompted different opinions about the trend, with Rep. Peter King (R-Seaford) going as far as to recommend in an interview the need for special terror courts.

King said the idea of the special court is being talked about on Capitol Hill and he might propose the idea at some point. He also said he believed a unit such as Britain's MI-5 security service could be set up to coordinate counterterrorism investigations.

But Karen Greenberg, executive director of the Center on Law and Security, said the high rate of declined prosecutions was actually a good thing for the public.

She also said the high conviction rate in terrorism cases shows better quality investigations and more focused federal efforts.

Both reports were released at a time of heightened concern about terror plots in New York City. Najibullah Zazi, 24, a former food pushcart vendor from Flushing, is scheduled Tuesday to be arraigned in Brooklyn federal court amid high security on charges he planned to build and detonate bombs in the city around Sept. 11.

The Zazi case is said by law enforcement officials to be the most serious plot since 2001. Last week, federal prosecutors in Denver, where Zazi was living, said evidence suggested he was feverishly trying to build an explosive device, a claim his defense attorneys have denied.

TRAC's analysis of 8,896 referrals of terrorism cases by the FBI and other agencies, such as the Department of Homeland Security, between fiscal 2004 and 2008 showed that 5,995 of them, or 67 percent, were closed without prosecution.

Of those that went to indictment, 2,302, or 79 percent, led to convictions.

More than 43 percent of the referrals were discarded because of weak or insufficient admissible evidence or lack of criminal intent, according to TRAC.

The NYU study examined a smaller number of terrorism prosecutions from 2001 until this year and found a conviction rate of 78 percent for terrorism or national security violations.

That rate jumped to 88 percent when taking into account cases in which defendants beat a terror charge but were convicted of another offense. The NYU report didn't examine declined prosecutions.

The TRAC study also noted that the federal court system and Department of Justice define terrorism cases differently, indicating that the federal government is uncertain about who should be targeted for investigation. The result has been an "unfocused, wandering and erratic federal effort," TRAC said.

Department of Justice officials Friday stood by the agency terrorism prosecutions, saying efforts to dismantle terror plots has vastly improved since Sept. 11, 2001.

The agency said it was unable to verify data and conclusions reached by TRAC, saying the nonprofit group sometimes put out misleading information.

David Burnham, a TRAC director, called the DOJ response "unfortunate" because it didn't point to any flaws in the data and failed to address any problems. [Destefano/NewsDay/29September2009] 

US Officials Say Taliban Funding May Be Impossible to Dry Up. The Taliban-led insurgency is now understood to generate funds from a huge and diverse array of crimes, donations and taxes, the Washington Post has reported. The paper has quoted US and Afghan officials as saying it may be impossible to dry up the funds.

US officials say the single largest source of cash for the Taliban is not drugs but foreign donations. The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) recently estimated that Taliban leaders and their allies received $106 million last year from donors outside Afghanistan.

For a decade now, the US Treasury and the UN Security Council have maintained financial blacklists of suspected donors to the Taliban and Al Qaeda. The UN requires all members to freeze the assets of designated Taliban officials and their supporters.

Both blacklists were greatly expanded after the September 11, 2001 attacks. Since 2005, however, only a handful have been added to the lists.

Some American and Afghan officials said the US government paid less attention to Taliban donors after the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

Richard Barrett, coordinator of the United Nations' Taliban and Al Qaeda Monitoring Team, says Taliban sympathisers are much more skilful today at ensuring that the money cannot be traced back to them.

In July, US envoy to Pakistan and Afghanistan Richard Holbrooke said the Taliban were getting the bulk of their funds from the Persian Gulf. Other US officials have noted that the Taliban received substantial financial help from Gulf countries during the 1990s.

In an August 30 report assessing the state of the war, General Stanley McChrystal - the commander of US and NATO forces in Afghanistan - said the Taliban's range of financial resources made it difficult to weaken the movement. Annual revenue is thought to be hundreds of millions of dollars.

Drug money: Money skimmed from the narcotics business still offers crucial support to Taliban operations, particularly in the southern provinces. The US military has estimated that the Taliban collect $70 million annually from poppy farmers and narcotics traffickers.

Many insurgent leaders now collect a 'tax' or take a cut from gemstone, timber or antiquity smugglers. Then there are ransoms from kidnappings.

Another source of revenue are 'protection' payments by Afghan and Western subcontractors.

The US government has now created a special investigative unit called the Afghan Threat Finance Cell that gathers financial information about the Taliban. The cell has about two-dozen members drawn from the Drug Enforcement Administration, US Central Command, the Treasury Department and the CIA. The FBI is expected to join soon.

Most money transfers in Afghanistan are made under the 'hawala' system. Brokers in seven provinces are now registered with the government and are required to report all transactions to the central bank.

The Taliban also move large amounts of cash via human couriers, US officials say. In Washington, the US government has recently established a group to devise an overall strategy for restricting the flow of money to the Taliban. The Illicit Finance Task Force is directed by the US Treasury. [DailyTimes/28September2009] 

CIA Opens Center for Climate Change. The Central Intelligence Agency announced plans to launch a center on climate change to examine the potential security risks of environmental issues.

The CIA said it was working on its new Center on Climate Change and National Security to examine the national security impact of environmental issues such as population shifts, rising sea levels and increased competition for natural resources.

CIA Director Leon Panetta described the center as an effective support tool for U.S. lawmakers examining international agreements on the environment.

"Decision makers need information and analysis on the effects climate change can have on security," said the director. "The CIA is well positioned to deliver that intelligence."

The CIA will use the center to coordinate with other members of the intelligence community to review and declassify imagery and other data for use in environmental and climate-related issues. [UPI/29September2009] 

CIA Director Panetta Honors Two Spies. At the CIA, winning the prized Trailblazer Medal is like getting into the Spook Hall of Fame. And our spies over there tell us that CIA Director Leon Panetta gave out two last Friday, the agency's 62nd birthday. One went to a current secret techie who was recognized for building "amazing tools he and his teams brought online." The other was to the late John Guilsher, a 52-year vet of the agency and Russia pro, who recruited Soviet scientist Adolf Tolkachev at the height of the Cold War. Secrets from Tolkachev helped influence U.S. military planning. At the ceremony, Panetta said that Guilsher was "a rare combination of careful planner and audacious operator. He was practical yet imaginative. An expert at detecting and evading surveillance. And a master of disguise - even if it meant adding a dash of garlic and vodka to his clothes." [USNews/28September2009]

CNO Unveils New Directorate for 'Information Dominance'. Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Gary Roughead officially announced late today the formation of a new "information dominance" directorate within his office at the Pentagon, which he argues will give "greater visibility" to assets like unmanned systems.

Vice Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jonathan Greenert revealed the merger of the Navy's intelligence (N2) and communications (N6) directorates within the office of the chief of naval operations, dubbed "information dominance" (N2/N6), in an Aug. 19 memorandum. Roughead said today that the move would combine the service's intelligence efforts with its sensors and computer networks to better integrate the sharing of information throughout the Navy.

Further, the move includes the transfer of resource sponsorship of a myriad of assets from the sea service's capabilities directorate, known as N8, to the new organization.

The most prominent of the resources to move are unmanned systems - including aircraft, surface and underwater assets.

"They will have clearly greater visibility," Roughead told reporters following a speech at a Washington hotel. "Because unmanned systems are extraordinarily dependent on the flow of data, either for their control or for mission value, that to have them embedded in the organization that's responsible for networks and sensors is a better fit. To be able to look at it from that one perspective, I think it's a better integration of the systems that are key to their operation."

Included in the list of resources transferred from N8 to N2/N6 are EP-3 spy aircraft; all unmanned aviation programs including Broad Area Maritime Surveillance (BAMS), the MQ-8 Fire Scout, the Marine Corps Tactical UAV, the Navy Unmanned Combat System (UCAS) and small tactical unmanned aerial system (STUAS); the Next-Generation Jammer; the E-2D Hawkeye; oceanographic ships; and space and electronic warfare systems, among other programs and initiatives.

Vice Adm. Jack Dorsett, the director of Navy intelligence, has been tasked to lead the new directorate. Dorsett said additional resources not listed in Greenert's August memo could transfer from N8 to the new directorate as well. The three-star admiral met with reporters following Roughead's presentation.

The new directorate will begin setting its budget priorities as part of the Navy's program objective memorandum 2012, Dorsett noted.

In parallel with the directorate merger at the Pentagon, the Navy formed Fleet Cyber Command/10th Fleet. Fleet Cyber Command will be the operational component of U.S. Cyber Command, while the commander of 10th Fleet will have administrative control under Roughead's office. The new command will be based at Ft. Meade, MD, the Navy chief said.

Roughead sees Fleet Cyber Command growing to about 44,000 sailors managed as the "information dominance corps," he said. The personnel would include sailors and officers from various commands with military occupational specialties that match the command's needs. [Peterson/InsideDefense/1October2009]

Emirates Authorities Expel Lebanese Who Refuse to Spy on Hezbollah. The United Arab Emirates authorities are systematically expelling from the country Lebanese Shiites who refuse to spy on Hezbollah. A spokesman for the expelled Lebanese said hundreds of them were "summoned by the security services in the UAE before being expelled, and were asked to spy on fellow Lebanese in the Emirates as well as Hezbollah members or face deportation". Speaking at a conference in Beirut, Hassan Alayan said the expulsions began last June, and so far have specifically targeted the 100,000-strong Lebanese community in the Emirates. Some say the expulsions are part of a US-led intelligence operation against the activities of Hezbollah, the Shiite Islamic political and paramilitary organization that controls large parts of Lebanon. An official from Lebanon's Foreign Ministry told AFP that the Emirates ambassador to Lebanon has been summoned "several times" over the expulsions, but has yet to give a clear explanation. UAE government officials in Abu Dhabi and UAE embassy officials in Beirut declined comment. [Fitsanakis/WorldPress/3 October2009] 

CIA at Work in UK, Anti-Terror Chief Tells MPs. Details have emerged of a private briefing between the government's most senior counter-terrorism official and MPs in which he warned of the dangers of radicalization among Muslim prisoners and admitted that CIA agents were operating in the UK.

Charles Farr, the head of the Home Office's office of security and counter-terrorism, told MPs the 8,000 Muslim inmates in England and Wales represented "a very significant group".

"We know that once they get inside prison there is a danger that they will be radicalized - there is an additional risk that, for entirely legitimate reasons, people can get converted in prison to Islam. We are very aware of the risks," he said.

On the issue of Islamist radicalization in prison, he revealed his unit had to help a cash-strapped prison service find enough money to develop a counter-terrorist program, including the creation of an intelligence infrastructure.

That unit, he said, had made some inroads in tackling extremism in prisons. "It is not yet a success story but it is a story of real progress," he said, and added: "When they get back into the community what are we going to do about that?"

During the in camera evidence session to a sub-committee of the Commons home affairs select committee, Farr also confirmed there were CIA agents operating in Britain and that Britain had a "very close" relationship with the US intelligence community.

Asked if CIA agents and other "outside organizations" were working in Britain, Farr replied: "Most certainly, yes. Are they declared? Yes. They are in regular dialogue with our agencies here. The cornerstone of this is the American relationship.

"Why? For two reasons, I think, above all: because of the huge American capability that can be brought to bear on counter-terrorism, and has been since 9/11.

"Secondly - because people who pose a threat to this country are six hours away from the eastern seaboard, something which the Americans are acutely aware of, as are we, and therefore take a very close interest in."

Farr, who rarely appears publicly, also disclosed that last year's visa ban on the Islamist preacher Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, was not straightforward. He described Qaradawi as "one of the most articulate critics of al-Qaida in the Islamic world" despite his antisemitic and homophobic views. He said the ban was still a current issue.

The redacted transcript of the unannounced evidence session, which took place in February, was vetted by Farr before it was published as an obscure annexe to a Commons home affairs select committee report on counter-terrorism published over the summer.

On prisons Farr said that there was a "very large, complicated counter-terrorist program" run by the National Offender Management Service under a strategic framework provided by his office.

"We are funding it. They do not have enough money so we have transferred some of our program budget, and it is a good thing that we are able to do that, into the Ministry of Justice to enable them to get it off the ground," he said.

Farr said Muslim prisoners constituted 12% to 13% of the total prison population. He said that there was a direct relationship between criminality and radicalization that "greatly interests us", with those with non-terrorist criminal records finding terrorist networks a refuge from the isolation and alienation that they face in the community as a result of their criminal activities. For this reason the group of 8,000-plus Muslim prisoners were more vulnerable to radicalization than many others.

Farr also said the Home Office's research, communications and information unit, which advises on the nature of the terror threat, only has a staff of 35 from across government to challenge the output of 4,500 "incessant" Islamist terrorist websites around the world. [Guardian/1October2009] 

Defamation Suit Settled in Cuban 'Agent' Case. A veteran spy catcher, who publicly named people he claims are Cuban government agents, was sued in Miami federal court, where he was accused of malicious defamation.

Lt. Col. Chris Simmons is an Army Reserve counterintelligence officer and former Defense Intelligence Agency analyst with a career in catching Cuban spies. Now he's writing a book, starting a new business, and going on Spanish language TV shows to ``name names.''

On Oct. 8, Simmons appeared on Am�rica TeVe Channel 41 show A Mano Limpia and identified anti-embargo activist Silvia Wilhelm as a Cuban government collaborator.

U.S. intelligence agencies are scrambling to figure out whether U.S. agents in Cuba or elsewhere have been jeopardized by the actions of Walter and Gwendolyn Myers, the husband-and-wife team charged Friday with spying on behalf of Cuba.

The government-wide assessment is expected to be headed by National Counterintelligence Executive Joel F. Brenner.

Obama administration officials say Walter Kendall Myers had access to highly sensitive material while working for the State Department's intelligence arm, which receives intelligence reports from all agencies.

If Kendall and Gwendolyn Myers know their Cuban history, they might well blame their arrest last week on charges of spying for Havana on the 1989 execution of Cuban Army Gen. Arnaldo Ochoa and the 1996 shootdown of two Brothers to The Rescue airplanes.

The first event led to a massive purge at the Ministry of Interior (MININT), in charge of the island's security, that crippled its operational abilities for years afterward and exposed it to U.S. counter-measures. The second made the FBI angry - really angry.

From 1959 to 1995, only four Cuban spies were arrested in the United States, including three in 1962. The U.S. counterintelligence community's preferred strategy was to watch Cuba's spies and expel them only when they got too frisky. No use arresting or expelling someone and then having to spot the replacements Havana was certain to send, U.S. officials argued. During the Cold War, some 30 Havana diplomats assigned to the Cuban Interests Section in Washington or the U.N. Mission in New York were expelled

As a couple accused of spying for Cuba head to federal court Wednesday, Cuba watchers say the latest case of espionage could crimp the Obama administration's efforts to renew talks with the government in Havana.

The arrests last week of former State Department employee Walter Kendall Myers and his wife, Gwendolyn Steingraber Myers, came as the Cuban government agreed to an overture by the U.S. State Department to resume long-suspended discussions on migration and direct mail between the two countries.

But with some critics of the regime opposed to renewing the talks until Cuba has shown some democratic change, analysts suggest momentum could slow.

Chris Simmons, a former lieutenant colonel in U.S. counterintelligence, insists that there are dozens of spies in the service of Cuba within the government of the United States and in the nation's universities.

He made that assertion in connection with the recent arrest of Walter Kendall Myers, a former high-ranking State Department official, and his wife, Gwendolyn. Myers spied for Cuba for three decades, and his motivation (like his wife's) was of an ideological nature. He sympathized with the Cuban dictatorship and felt an enormous contempt for his country's economic system and political conduct. 

A defamation lawsuit filed by a Cuban American anti-embargo activist against a U.S. counterintelligence expert who branded her a Havana "agent'' has been settled, both sides say.

"The case of Silvia Wilhelm vs. Chris Simmons has been settled. The terms of the resolution are confidential,'' the two sides said in identical statements issued late Tuesday.

Wilhelm's Fort Lauderdale lawyer, Bruce Rogow, declined comment on the settlement. ``The language of the announcement speaks for itself.'' But he denied media reports that she had dropped the lawsuit.

Court documents show that on Sept. 2 Rogow filed an "Agreed Notice of Resolution,'' reporting that on Aug. 26, "the parties resolved this dispute, with one aspect of the resolution to be completed by Sept. 25.''

Simmons, a retired Cuba counter-intelligence expert with the Pentagon's Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), also declined further comment.

Simmons, who played a key role in identifying Ana Belen Montes, the DIA's top Cuba analyst, as a Havana spy, also identified six others as Cuban agents during his Miami television appearances.

Wilhelm, a Cuban American active in opposing the U.S. embargo on Havana, flatly denied the allegation and filed a lawsuit against Simmons for malicious slander in December before U.S. District Court Judge Marcia G. Cook.

Simmons has said he based his allegations on declassified records, interviews with Cuban intelligence defectors and other witnesses he didn't identify.  [MiaimHerald/1October2009] 

Denmark's Military Intelligence Chief Resigns Amid Soldier Book Scandal. Denmark's military chief of staff said he will resign to restore the public's confidence in the country's defense, an apparent reference to a scandal surrounding a book disclosing Danish military secrets.

Tim Sloth Joergensen had come under fire after it was disclosed that defense IT chief Jesper Britze was behind an Arabic translation of the controversial book "Ranger - At War With The Elite" that was sent to Danish media.

The book was written by former special forces soldier Thomas Rathsack and describes a Danish elite army's missions in Iraq and Afghanistan. The armed forces tried unsuccessfully to stop it from being published, saying it would be a threat to forces operating abroad.

Among other things, Defense Minister Soeren Gade said the Arabic translation could give Taliban tips about how to target Danish soldiers in Afghanistan.

In one case in the book, Rathsack recalled an undercover operation during which members of the unit, disguised in Afghan clothing, escorted a secret agent code-named "Eric" from an unidentified coalition force.

Britze was suspended after the revelations.

"The recent events have obviously weakened the surrounding world's trust for the defense," Sloth Joergensen said in a statement on Sunday that announced his resignation. [LATimes/4October2009] 

Al Qaeda's Diminished Role Stirs Afghan Troop Debate. Since first invading Afghanistan nearly a decade ago, America set one primary goal: Eliminate al Qaeda's safe haven.

Today, intelligence and military officials say they've severely constrained al Qaeda's ability to operate there and in Pakistan - and that's reshaping the profound debate over future U.S. strategy in the region.

Hunted by U.S. drones, beset by money problems and finding it tougher to lure young Arabs to the bleak mountains of Pakistan, al Qaeda is seeing its role shrink there and in Afghanistan, according to intelligence reports, and Pakistani and U.S. officials. Conversations intercepted by the U.S. show al Qaeda fighters complaining of shortages of weapons, clothing and, in some cases, food. The number of foreign fighters in Afghanistan appears to be declining, U.S. military officials say.

In Washington, the question of Al Qaeda's strength is at the heart of the debate over whether to send thousands more troops to Afghanistan.

Opponents of sending more troops prefer a narrower campaign consisting of missile strikes and covert action inside Pakistan, rather than a broader war against the Taliban, the radical Islamist movement that ruled Afghanistan for years and provided a haven to al Qaeda's Osama bin Laden. Their reasoning: The larger threat to America remains al Qaeda, not the Taliban; so, best not to get embroiled in a local war against the Taliban that history suggests may be unwinnable.

Military commanders pressing for more troops counter that sending more forces could help translate the gains against al Qaeda into a political settlement with less ideologically committed elements of the Taliban. And, they argue, that would improve the odds of stabilizing Afghanistan for the long run.

The risk, they say, is in backing off the Taliban, which remain al Qaeda's protector. That could give al Qaeda space to regain its footing, U.S., Pakistani and Afghan officials say. A key point of contention in President Barack Obama's review of war strategy is the ability of al Qaeda to reconstitute in Afghanistan. Some officials, including aides to Richard Holbrooke, the U.S.'s special representative to the region, have argued that the Taliban wouldn't allow al Qaeda to regain its footing inside Afghanistan, since it was the alliance between the two that cost the Taliban their control of the country after Sept. 11.

A senior military official, however, characterized this as a minority view within the debate. He noted that even if the Taliban sought to keep al Qaeda from returning, it would have little means to do so.

In the political debate, al Qaeda's diminished role has bolstered the argument of those advocating a narrower campaign, who say that al Qaeda doesn't require physical sanctuary, so there's no need to strengthen the Afghan government, and that continuing the drone campaign is sufficient to keep al Qaeda at bay, said Bruce Hoffman, a Georgetown University professor who has written extensively on al Qaeda.

Mr. Hoffman, however, said that argument is misguided because if the U.S. pulls out of Afghanistan, al Qaeda will return. "Al Qaeda may be diminished, but it still poses a threat," he said.

Though there is emerging international consensus among counterterrorism officials that al Qaeda isn't the foe it used to be, U.S., Afghan and Pakistani officials caution that it doesn't mean the fight in Afghanistan or Pakistan is tilting America's way. "They're not defeated. They're not dismantled, but they are being disrupted," said a senior U.S. intelligence official in Washington.

Mr. Obama himself has argued that al Qaeda could strengthen if the U.S. eases up on the Taliban.

Al Qaeda apparently retains a global reach, as suggested by the Sept. 19 arrest in Colorado of Najibullah Zazi, 24 years old. U.S. prosecutors allege Mr. Zazi is part of an al Qaeda cell who trained in Pakistan and was trying to make the same kind of explosives used in the 2005 London bombings.

U.S. officials also say al Qaeda remains tight with the network of Jalaluddin Haqqani and his son, Sirajuddin, one of the Afghan insurgency's top leaders. The late leader of the Pakistan Taliban, Baitullah Mehsud, was similarly close with al Qaeda before being killed in August by a strike from a U.S. drone aircraft. U.S. officials say they hope his death will weaken al Qaeda's Taliban ties.

For years, the fortunes of al Qaeda and the Taliban moved in tandem. The Taliban hosted al Qaeda in Afghanistan, and Mr. bin Laden's network launched its 2001 attacks from there. After the U.S.-led invasion of Afghanistan, the Taliban continued to provide haven after retreating to the tribal areas of Pakistan, while al Qaeda trained Taliban fighters in many of the tactics that they now use in their fight to regain control of Afghanistan.

But in the past year, the fates of the two organizations have diverged. The Taliban insurgency has become increasingly violent and brazen and spread to areas of Afghanistan that only a year ago were considered solidly pro-government. Al Qaeda, in contrast, has seen its role shrink because it is struggling to raise money from its global network of financiers and attract recruits.

Today there are signs al Qaeda is relying more on affiliated groups to press its agenda world-wide, according to one official briefed on the matter. These groups include Pakistani movements such as Jaish-e-Muhammad and Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, Indonesia-based Jemaah Islamiyah and the Islamic Jihad Union, whose roots are in Uzbekistan.

As affiliates like these "continue to develop and evolve," their threat to the U.S. has grown, Michael Leiter, director of the National Counterterrorism Center, said in Senate hearings last week.

Meanwhile in Afghanistan, the presence of fewer foreign fighters - Arabs, Chechens, Uzbeks and others - potentially changes the dynamics of the fight there.

Foreign militants serve as a battlefield "accellerant," said Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the commander of U.S. and North Atlantic Treaty Organization forces in Afghanistan, in an interview. That's because, "When a foreign fighter comes into Afghanistan, he doesn't have anything else he's going to do - he's going to fight until he dies or goes somewhere else," By contrast, "An Afghan is fighting for something, and if he starts to get that, his motivation changes."

Right now, Gen. McChrystal said, "We don't see huge numbers of foreign fighters, which obviously makes you believe there's not nearly the presence there was of foreign fighters....I hope it's a trend, but I'm not prepared to confidently say that."

Even if Al Qaeda is struggling, it already has imparted dangerous knowledge - how to build suicide car bombs, launch complex gunmen assaults and tap wealthy sympathizers in the Persian Gulf - that made it a key asset to the Taliban several years ago.

Al Qaeda also remains allied with and protected by the Taliban. Allowing the insurgents to succeed would likely give al Qaeda the space it needs to regroup, rearm and, most importantly, reestablish itself as the premier global jihadi movement, U.S., Pakistani and Afghan officials say.

Al Qaeda's message of world-wide jihad, however, has lost much of its popularity amid the rise of militant groups in Afghanistan, Pakistan and elsewhere who tend to focus their ire locally. That, combined with a perception among would-be followers that the group has only paid lip-service to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, also has reduced its global credibility, officials say.

Al Qaeda has tried to respond to the changing mood in the Muslim world by scaling back its message to focus on Afghanistan and South Asia, rather than Iraq or the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Support is even declining among some of al Qaeda's allies. It has lost support from a group of Saudi sheiks collectively known as the Sahwa, or "Awakening," movement. (It's unrelated to a similar-sounding group in Iraq.). Some of the sheiks are now trying to persuade members of al Qaeda's North African branch to give up jihad, said Daniel Lav, director of the Middle East and North Africa Reform Project at the Middle East Media Research Institute in Washington.

Mr. bin Laden and al Qaeda No. 2 Ayman al-Zawahiri are believed to be hiding in Pakistan's tribal lands bordering Afghanistan. But a U.S. campaign of missile strikes by pilotless Predator aircraft has decimated al Qaeda's second- and third-tier leadership.

One example cited by U.S. and Pakistani officials: Usama al-Kini, a Kenyan citizen believed to have been al Qaeda's operations chief inside Pakistan and a key architect of the September 2008 truck bombing of the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad, which killed at least 50 people. He was slain along with his deputy, Sheik Ahmed Salim Swedan, a Kenyan, in a Jan. 1 missile strike, officials say.

Both men's history with al Qaeda stretched back to the group's first major strike, the 1998 bombings of the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania.

Officials also pointed to Rashid Rauf, the alleged mastermind of a 2006 plot to blow up British airliners over the Atlantic, who they say was slain in a drone attack late last year, although Pakistani and British officials express uncertainty over whether he is actually dead.

But even if Mr. Rauf is still alive, the fact that he became such a primary target made it tough for him to fulfill his role as a communications link between Pakistan and Britain, says an officer from Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence spy agency. Other operatives who have been detained by British authorizes have further eroded those communications links, an official familiar with the intelligence reports on al Qaeda added.

The drones, operated by the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, have so far killed 11 of the men on the U.S.'s initial list of the top 20 al Qaeda targets, the official said. The U.S. has since drawn up a fresh list, including the nine holdovers from the first one. Four of the men on the new list are now dead, too. Those who remain are focused on finding sanctuary, possibly at the expense of operations and training, say officials and militants with links to al Qaeda.

At the same time, U.S. intelligence collection in Pakistan has vastly improved, officials say. Western intelligence services have had more success penetrating al Qaeda groups lately, according to Richard Barrett, the United Nations' coordinator for monitoring al Qaeda and the Taliban.

Similarly, the U.S. in the past was unable to comprehensively monitor communications in Pakistan; that has now been rectified, said an official briefed on U.S. operations. Through that monitoring, U.S., British and Pakistani intelligence officials have seen increasing evidence that al Qaeda is having difficulty raising money.

The new intelligence has provided fresh ways to try to undermine the foreign al Qaeda fighters. Pakistani authorities say they've started targeting food shipments believed to be headed for al Qaeda operatives, who prefer their own cuisine over local fare. "The Talibs, they're eating mutton, chicken, bread - the food ordinary people eat," said an officer from Pakistan's ISI spy agency. "The Arabs want their own food." [Rosenberg/WSJ/4October2009] 


The Murder of Georgi Markov: The Mystery Remains. Thirty-one years ago, on 7 September 1978, Georgi Markov, a Bulgarian �migr� who lived and worked in London, was assaulted in broad daylight on London's Waterloo Bridge.

Georgi Markov had been a prolific and successful literary figure in Bulgaria before defecting to the West in 1969. He settled in England and became a broadcast journalist for Radio Free Europe, the British Broadcasting Company (BBC), and the German international broadcast service Deutsche Welle.

Markov had a large listening audience in Bulgaria, who listened to his prime-time Sunday-night broadcasts over Radio Free Europe. He dared to tell his audience that Bulgarian President and Communist Party chief Todor Zhivkov wore no clothes.

In June 1977, Communist Party Chairman Zhivkov chaired a Politburo meeting, and stated he wanted the activities of Markov stopped. The Interior Minister reacted and requested KGB assistance in the killing of Markov. Though he wanted Markov killed, he wanted no trace to Bulgaria. The Chairman of the KGB, Yuri Andropov, agreed to the assassination, as long as there would be no trace back to the Soviets. Thus, the Bulgarians and Soviets were operating under a double case of "plausible denial."

A former KGB general has publicly admitted his role and the role of the KGB in supplying the Bulgarian intelligence service with both the weapon and the poison. Purportedly, the highly secret KGB laboratory known as the "Chamber" developed both the weapon, concealed in a US-manufactured umbrella, and biotoxin ricin impregnated in a wax-coated pellet the size of a pinhead.

Markov received various warnings and anonymous threats to stop broadcasting his inside knowledge of Zhivkov and the obsequious circles of Bulgarian intellectuals and government officials. Until his death, Markov persisted and peeled away the artichoke leaves of lies and corruption in Bulgaria.

A grotesque black comedy followed with three attempts to kill Markov in 1978. The first attempt was in Munich in the spring, when Markov visited friends and colleagues at Radio Free Europe. An agent failed in an attempt to put a toxin in Markov's drink at a dinner party held in his honor. The second failed attempt was on the Italian island Sardinia while Markov enjoyed a summer vacation with his wife Annabel and daughter Sasha. The final and successful attempt was in London on President Zhivkov's birthday - 7 September 1978.

On that day, Markov worked a double shift at the BBC. After finishing the early morning shift, he went home for rest and lunch. Returning to work by car, he drove to a parking lot on the south side of Waterloo Bridge to take a bus to his office at the BBC. As he neared the waiting queue, he experienced a sudden stinging pain in the back of his right thigh. He turned and saw a man bending to pick up a dropped umbrella. The man, facing away from Markov, apologized in a foreign accent, hailed a taxi, and departed. He has never been identified.

Though in pain, Markov boarded the bus to work and noticed a small blood spot on his pants. He told colleagues at the BBC what happened and showed one friend a pimple-like red swelling on his thigh. Later that evening, Markov developed a high fever. His wife called a colleague at the BBC, who took Markov to St. James hospital, where he was treated for an undetermined form of blood poisoning. He did not respond to doctors' efforts, went into shock, and after days of delirium, pain, and suffering, Georgi Markov died in London on 11 September 1978 at the age of 49.

British authorities later ruled that Markov had been "unlawfully killed" and died of "septicemia, a form of blood poisoning caused by bacterial toxins, possibly a result of kidney failure."

Investigative reporter in Bulgaria Hristo Hristov has published two books in English, based on his years of research into Bulgarian intelligence files, which include a copy of the passport and photographs of an Italian art dealer and small time-criminal, code name "Piccadilly", used by Bulgarian intelligence service in the murder.

A copy of an umbrella that was adapted into a "gun", believed by many to have been used to deliver a biotoxin that killed Markov, is on display at the International Spy Museum in Washington; the minute pellet that contained the poison, believed to be ricin, is on display today in the Crime Museum at New Scotland Yard in London. It has been estimated that one ounce of ricin could kill as many as 90,000 persons. British scientists later estimated that only about 450 micrograms were used to kill Markov.

One Bulgarian general committed suicide rather than face trial for destroying thousands of pages of information about Georgi Markov. Another general was found guilty, spent a few months in jail, and reportedly now lives quietly in a villa in Bulgaria.

The case has been investigated by generations of Scotland Yard policemen and remains open in England. In Bulgaria, the case should have been closed in 2008, due to thirty-year statute of limitations, but authorities decided to keep it open another five years.

Georgi Markov was buried in the Saint Candida and Holy Cross Churchyard cemetery in Whitchurch Canonicorum, Dorset, England. The epitaph on his gravestone is written in Bulgarian on one side and English on the other.

And yet, with all the public information and years of official investigation, no one has been charged with the crime. The dots have not been completely connected. The final piece of the puzzle to complete the picture remains to be found.

Georgi Markov's death proved how far a totalitarian regime would go to protect itself from the truth. The murder of Georgi Markov seems destined to be another footnote in the history of the Cold War. Georgi Markov deserves a better fate. [Cummings/HistoryTimes/2October2009]

Crime History - First FBI Agent Busted for Spying. On Oct. 2, in 1984, Richard Miller became the first FBI agent in history to be arrested for espionage.

Miller was a bumbling agent known mostly for the food stains and crumbs that spilled on his clothes. He often took three-hour lunches at 7-Elevens near his Los Angeles office, gorging on candy bars and immersing himself in comic books.

Miller was an easy target for Russian agent Svetlana Ogorodnikov. When the FBI learned of his secret affair, Miller claimed that he was trying to fool the KGB into thinking he was a double agent.

Miller and Sveltana were getting ready to travel to Vienna and when the FBI arrested them and her husband, Nikolai Ogorodnikov, for spying. Miller was accused of passing classified FBI counterintelligence documents to the Soviet agents in exchange for sexual favors, $50,000 in gold and $15,000 cash.

Miller was sentenced to two life sentences. In 1994, he was released from prison following the reduction of his sentence to 13 years. He lives in Utah. [McCabe/WashingtonExaminer/2October2009] 

Postwar Defense Aide was CIA Mole. An aide to Prime Minister Shigeru Yoshida gave internal government information to the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency in the 1950s on Japan's moves to develop a defense capability.

According to documents found at the U.S. national archives by Tetsuo Arima, a professor of media research, the CIA got the information through former Lt. Gen. Eiichi Tatsumi, who was given the code name "POLESTAR-5."

Tatsumi, who provided Yoshida with expert advice as Japan developed a defense capability following the war, kept the CIA informed on the establishment of government entities such as the Self-Defense Forces and the Cabinet intelligence office.

"Mr. Tatsumi, a former military man who was hoping for a stronger military and intelligence organization (in Japan), was expecting the United States to urge Prime Minister Yoshida to switch from the line of becoming lightly armed by disclosing information via the CIA to the United States, which in diplomatic negotiations was pushing Japan to remilitarize," Arima said.

A CIA file on Tatsumi covering 1952 to 1957 shows he was referred to in various ways, including by his real name and the code name as well as through expressions such as "an informant close to Prime Minister" and "an adviser for Prime Minister."

Tatsumi was a member of the so-called Kawabe Organization, an anticommunist spy ring established at the request of the General Headquarters of the U.S.-led Occupation, where he was involved in the planning stages of establishing new military and intelligence organizations.

When Yoshida became prime minister, he kept his distance from most former military personnel who were members of the Kawabe Organization, but he had faith in Tatsumi and entrusted him in 1950 with choosing senior members of the National Police Reserve, the predecessor of the SDF.

In a CIA memorandum dated Nov. 26, 1956, Tatsumi was described as "probably one of the best, safest, most qualified persons in Japan today for CIA use." [JapanTimes/5October2009] 

How MI5 Spent 18 Years Hunting the Spy It Had Already Caught. In June 1934 Kim Philby, who had graduated from Trinity College, Cambridge, in the previous year with the conviction that "my life must be devoted to communism", had his first meeting with his Soviet controller, Dr Arnold Deutsch. The rendezvous took place in Regent's Park. Philby became the first of the "Cambridge Five", the ablest group of British agents ever recruited by a foreign intelligence service.

Deutsch asked Philby to recommend some of his Cambridge contemporaries. His first two nominations were Donald Maclean, who had just graduated from Trinity Hall with first-class honors in modern languages, and Guy Burgess, of Trinity College, who was working on a history PhD thesis which he was never to complete. By the end of 1934, with Philby's help, Deutsch had recruited both, telling them - like Philby - to distance themselves from communist friends. Burgess did so with characteristic flamboyance, becoming personal assistant in the following year to the right-wing Conservative MP Captain "Jack" Macnamara, with whom he went on fact-finding missions to Nazi Germany which, according to Burgess, were largely devoted to sexual escapades with gay members of the Hitler Youth.

The first of the Cambridge Five to penetrate the "bourgeois apparatus" was Maclean, who entered the Foreign Office in 1935. Burgess's main role in his early years as a Soviet agent was a talent-spotter. Early in 1937, by then a BBC producer, he arranged the first meeting between Deutsch and Anthony Blunt, French linguist, art historian and Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge. Blunt in turn identified as a likely recruit his former pupil John Cairncross, a passionate Scottish Marxist nicknamed "The Fiery Cross" who in 1936 had graduated from Trinity with first-class honours in modern languages and come top in the Foreign Office entrance examination.

All were inspired by the myth-image of Stalin's Russia as a worker-peasant state with social justice for all, free from the exploitation and alienation of the capitalist system. The message of liberation had all the greater appeal for the Five because it had a sexual as well as a political dimension. Burgess and Blunt were gay and Maclean bisexual at a time when homosexual relations were illegal. When the war ended, four of what were later called the "Magnificent Five" were still in place in Britain. Philby was in MI6 with, some believed, the potential to become a future "C". Maclean and Burgess were both supplying large quantities of classified Foreign Office documents. Cairncross, though the peak of his career as a Soviet agent was past, was well positioned in the Treasury to provide intelligence on British defense expenditure. Blunt, who left the Security Service to become director of the Courtauld Institute, continued to carry out occasional missions for Soviet intelligence.

On the eve of the Cold War, by contrast, the Security Service had not a single Soviet agent worth the name and was woefully ignorant of the extent of Soviet wartime intelligence penetration. The Security Service's first major post-war insight into Soviet intelligence operations in the West was the result of a defection in Canada. As well as providing evidence of Soviet espionage in the United States, Igor Gouzenko, a 26-year-old cipher clerk who had been working for the GRU (Soviet military intelligence) at the Soviet embassy, revealed the existence of a major GRU Canadian spy ring. More, only a month after Hiroshima, Soviet intelligence had obtained "documentary materials of the atomic bomb: the technological process, drawings, calculations".

References to an agent codenamed ALEK identified the British scientist Alan Nunn May. A secret communist and contemporary of Donald Maclean at Cambridge, May was the first of the "atom spies" to be unmasked.

Yet MI5 formed a greatly exaggerated view of the sophistication of late-Stalinist foreign intelligence operations. In reality, Soviet agent-running in the West during the 1940s and early 1950s was frequently of poor quality. There were senior Soviet intelligence officers who argued that the Five were part of a "fiendishly clever" British plot. In the early Cold War both Maclean and Philby were badly let down by the controllers at crucial moments.

After Maclean's posting to Cairo in October 1948 as counselor and head of Chancery at the age of only 35, apparently on a path which might take him to the top of the diplomatic service but with his double life placing him under increasing strain, he asked to be allowed to give up work for Soviet intelligence. The Cairo residency forwarded his note unread to Moscow. Incredibly, the Centre also ignored it. Not until Maclean sent another appeal in April 1950 did he at last succeed in attracting the Centre's attention.

While the Centre was still deliberating on its response, Maclean went berserk. One evening in May, in a drunken rage, he and a drinking companion vandalized the flat of two female members of the US embassy. A few days later Maclean was sent back to London to see a Harley Street psychiatrist. Such was his desperate mental state, the last thing either the Foreign Office or the Harley Street psychiatrist imagined was his involvement in espionage.

Burgess, like Maclean, was showing the strain of his double life. His behavior had become so outrageous that he had come close to dismissal from the diplomatic service. A trip to Gibraltar and Tangier in the autumn of 1949 had turned into a "wild odyssey of indiscretions": among them failing to pay his bills, publicly identifying MI5 officers and drunken singing in local bars, "Little boys are cheap today, cheaper than yesterday". But it was Maclean who was most vulnerable. Philby was told by the Centre that plans would be made to rescue him "before the net closed in".

In April 1951 Burgess was ordered home from Washington in disgrace after a further series of escapades. On the eve of Burgess's departure, he and Philby agreed that Burgess would convey a warning to Maclean as soon as he reached Britain. Immediately after his return to England on May 7, Burgess called on Blunt and used him to deliver a message to the current controller of the Five at the London residency. Two days later the Centre agreed to Maclean's exfiltration. Since it seemed clear that Maclean would need an escort, the Centre insisted that Burgess accompany him to Moscow. Burgess initially refused but seems to have been persuaded by a half-promise that he would be free to return to London. In reality, the Centre believed that Burgess had become a liability and was determined to get him to Moscow - by deception if necessary - and keep him there.

Maclean was observed leaving the Foreign Office after work on Friday, May 25, carrying a large cardboard box, and tracked to Victoria Station, where "after a drink he boarded the 6.10pm train". That was to be the last seen of him. Security Service surveillance of Maclean was flawed as a result of its lack of resources. The London residency knew from studying the watchers' working pattern that they clocked off each evening and stopped work for the weekend at Saturday lunchtime with no Sunday working.

The Centre calculated that, since their recruitment in 1934-5, Philby, Burgess and Maclean had supplied more than 20,000 pages of "valuable" classified documents and agent reports. As Philby had feared, however, the defection of Burgess and Maclean did severe, though not quite terminal, damage to the careers in Soviet intelligence of the other three members of the Magnificent Five. Philby was recalled from Washington. On his return to London, he was officially retired with a golden handshake. Dick White as Director B (counter-espionage) asked Philby to help in the investigation of "this horrible business with Burgess and Maclean". White's friendly manner left Philby off his guard when summoned to a further meeting at the Security Service. This time the interrogator was H.J.P. "Buster" Milmo KC, later a High Court judge, a wartime member of the Service with a confrontational style who concluded "that Philby is and has been for many years a Soviet agent. But the case remained unproven". The defection of Burgess and Maclean also cast suspicion on Cairncross and Blunt. By the beginning of the 1960s the Security Service had still discovered very little about how any of the Magnificent Five had been recruited or controlled as Soviet agents. The gaps in the Service's knowledge of the Five and their handlers provided increasing opportunities for its small but disruptive group of conspiracy theorists led by Peter Wright who were convinced that the tip-off to Maclean, instead of coming from Philby via Burgess, had been given instead by an undiscovered Soviet agent inside the Security Service.

By 1964 the Service had obtained confessions of varying frankness from Philby, Blunt and Cairncross. The breakthrough came as a result of a chance meeting between the former MI5 officer Victor Rothschild and Flora Solomon, a Marks and Spencer executive and former lover of Alexander Kerensky, head of the Russian Provisional Government overthrown by the Bolshevik Revolution. Solomon was outraged by Philby's anti-Israeli and pro-Arab newspaper articles, and revealed that Philby had tried to recruit her as a Soviet agent before the war. Armed with Solomon's information, Philby's friend and former SIS colleague Nicholas Elliott flew from London at the beginning of 1963 to confront him in Beirut, where he was working as a journalist.

When offered immunity from prosecution in return for a confession, Philby admitted working as a Soviet agent from 1936 to 1946. In 1946, he told Elliott, he had seen the error of his ways and broken off contact with Soviet intelligence, though he had sent a warning to Maclean in 1951 for reasons of personal friendship. Philby, one of the 20th-century's most accomplished liars, made his bogus confession so persuasively that, in addition to Elliott, the heads of both MI5 and MI6, Sir Roger Hollis and Sir Dick White, were deceived by it. It was a severe embarrassment to them when less than a week later Philby secretly fled to Russia.

Philby's defection probably helped to increase the psychological pressure on both Cairncross and Blunt to confess secretly to the Security Service, since neither was willing to take refuge in Moscow. Once they had come clean, the Security Service had identified all of the Ring of Five.

The tragedy was that it failed to grasp that it had actually solved the case. Not until 1974 was Blunt at last identified, initially tentatively, as the Fourth Man. Even then, however, the hunt for the Fifth Man still did not appear in sight of success. His identity was eventually to be established as a result of intelligence from Oleg Gordievsky, an MI6 agent in the KGB recruited in 1974. After his posting to the London residency in 1982, he revealed that the Fifth Man was indeed Cairncross, who had confessed 18 years earlier. The Service discovered that a major counter-espionage problem which had continued to preoccupy it for more than 20 years had been resolved in 1964. [Andrew/TimesOnline/5October2009] 


This Week at War: Send in the Spies, by Robert Haddick. On Sept. 30, Pentagon spokesman Geoff Morrell made it clear that the objective of President Barack Obama's Afghanistan policy - "to disrupt, dismantle, and destroy al Qaeda" - remains unchanged. According to Morrell, what is open for discussion among Obama senior advisors is "whether or not counterinsurgency is still the preferred means of achieving that end."

As I discussed last week, Gen. Stanley McChrystal thinks counterinsurgency is the right course and has asked for at least 40,000 additional U.S. soldiers to implement this approach. It is now up to Obama to assess the risk of McChrystal's strategy and weigh whether the costs measure up to the promised benefits.

While Obama and his team deliberate, other developments are underway that will either support McChrystal's request or perhaps create alternatives. On Sept. 20, the Los Angeles Times reported on another "surge" into Afghanistan, this one by the Central Intelligence Agency. According to the article, the CIA's head count in Afghanistan will increase to 700, led by increases in paramilitary officers, intelligence analysts, and operatives tracking the behavior of Afghan government officials.

The piece discussed how McChrystal, while in charge of special operating forces in Iraq, formed teams composed of CIA paramilitary officers and special operations personnel from the U.S. military. This fusion of capabilities is credited with improving intelligence collection and direct action operations against insurgent networks. McChrystal may now be using this same technique in Afghanistan.

But raising the CIA's presence in Afghanistan to a higher plateau might set the stage for alternative approaches to U.S. strategy. Popular discussions of U.S. alternatives for Afghanistan focus on three options: McChrystal's beefed-up counterinsurgency campaign; a counterterror campaign using special operations raids and drone strikes; and abandonment. In reality, there is an entire continuum of options formulated by U.S. planners to achieve Obama's stated objective. Some of these options would focus on training, equipping, and advising Afghanistan's official security forces. Others might focus on enhancing security at the local level through village and tribal militias. Still others might attempt to turn the clock back to 2001 and 2002, when the CIA and special operations forces essentially hired Afghan warlords to fight the Taliban and al Qaeda. And there are many more options, all with varying degrees of plausibility.

One thing all of these options have in common is a requirement for greater CIA participation. Options that have fewer U.S. military forces directly providing security imply more Afghans providing security. This will require greater employment of U.S. liaison officers and advisors from both the U.S. military and the CIA's clandestine service.

If Obama chooses McChrystal's most military-intensive recommendation, it seems as if the CIA's role in Afghanistan will still increase both now and in the future. A successful military surge in Afghanistan will eventually be followed by a drawdown and a handoff to Afghan security forces. In the wake of this scenario, U.S. military advisors and CIA officers would maintain contact with Afghan security forces and keep watch on the residual al Qaeda threat.

Afghanistan seems bound to provide job security for the CIA. [Haddick/ForeignPolicy/2October2009] 

Intelligence Averts Another Attack, by Michael B. Mukasey. One would think that the arrests last week of Najibullah Zazi, charged with plotting to bomb New York City subways - and of two others charged with planning to blow up buildings in Dallas, Texas, and Springfield, Ill. - would generate support for the intelligence-gathering tools that protect this country from Muslim fanatics. In Mr. Zazi's case, the government has already confirmed the value of these tools: It has filed a notice of its intent to use information gathered under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which was specifically written to help combat terrorists and spies.

Nevertheless, there is a rear-guard action in Congress to make it more difficult to gather, use and protect intelligence - the only weapon that can prevent an attack rather than simply punish one after the fact. The USA Patriot Act, enacted in the aftermath of 9/11, is a case in point.

This law has a series of provisions that will expire unless Congress renews them. Up for renewal this year is a provision that permits investigators to maintain surveillance of sophisticated terrorists who change cell phones frequently to evade detection. This kind of surveillance is known as "roving wiretaps." Also up for renewal are authorizations to seek court orders to examine business records in national security investigations, and to conduct national security investigations even when investigators cannot prove a particular target is connected to a particular terrorist organization or foreign power - known as "lone wolf" authority.

Roving wiretaps have been used for decades by law enforcement in routine narcotics cases. They reportedly were used to help thwart a plot earlier this year to blow up synagogues in Riverdale, N.Y. Business records, including bank and telephone records, can provide important leads early in a national security investigation, and they have been used to obtain evidence in numerous cases.

The value of lone wolf authority is best demonstrated by its absence in the summer of 2001. That's when FBI agents might have obtained a warrant to search the computer of Zacharias Moussaoui, often referred to as the "20th hijacker," before the 9/11 attacks - although there was no proof at the time of his arrest on an immigration violation that he was acting for a terrorist organization. But a later search of his computer revealed just that.

Rather than simply renew these vital provisions, which expire at the end of this year, some congressional Democrats want to impose requirements that would diminish their effectiveness, or add burdens to existing authorizations that would retard rather than advance our ability to gather intelligence.

One bill would require the government to prove that the business records it seeks by court order pertain to an agent of a foreign power before investigators have seen those records. The current standard requires only that the records in question do not involve a person in the United States, or that they do relate to an investigation undertaken to protect the country against international terrorism or spying.

The section of the Patriot Act that confers the authority on investigators to seek these records was amended in 2006 to add civil liberties protections when sensitive personal information about a person in the U.S. is gathered. It passed the Senate overwhelmingly with support that included then-Sens. Barack Obama and Joe Biden.

The same proposed legislation would make it harder to obtain a real-time record of incoming and outgoing calls - known as a pen register - in national security cases. It does so by requiring that the government prove that the information sought in this record relates to a foreign power. Currently, the government can obtain a court order by certifying that the information sought either is foreign-intelligence information or relates to an investigation to protect against foreign terrorism or spying.

While the changes may sound benign, they turn the concept of an investigation on its head, requiring the government to submit proof at the outset of an investigation while facts are still being sought. In any event, a pen register shows only who called whom and nothing about the content of the call, and thus raises none of the privacy concerns that are at stake when a full-fledged wiretap is at issue. Moreover, the underlying information in a pen register is not private because telephone companies routinely have it.

Other proposals target national security letters, known as NSLs, which are administrative subpoenas like those issued routinely by the FBI and agencies as diverse as the Agriculture Department and the IRS to get information they need in order to enforce the statutes they administer. One Democratic bill would impose a four-year sunset on the FBI's authority to issue such letters where none exists now. Another, the "Judicious Use of Surveillance Tools In Counterterrorism Efforts Act of 2009," would bar their use entirely to get information about local or long-distance calls, financial transactions, or information from credit reports.

But this is precisely the kind of information that would be useful to an investigator trying to find out who a terrorist is calling or how much money he is receiving from overseas. The FBI already has the authority to obtain this kind of information in cases involving crimes against children. The Drug Enforcement Administration has it in drug cases. There is no sense in giving investigators in national security cases less authority than investigators in criminal cases, and in criticizing them for failing to connect the dots while denying them the authority to discover the dots.

Mr. Zazi's arrest is only the most recent case in which intelligence apparently has averted disaster. Cells have been broken up and individual defendants convicted in New York, Virginia, North Carolina, Oregon, Texas and Ohio.

But a disaster once averted is not permanently averted, as the writer Jonah Goldberg has noted. After the 1993 World Trade Center bombing killed six people and injured hundreds, Ramzi Youssef, the mastermind, was caught, convicted and put in the maximum security prison at Florence, Colo. Nonetheless, the World Trade Center towers are gone along with thousands of people.

Those who indulge paranoid fantasies of government investigators snooping on the books they take out of the library, and who would roll back current authorities in the name of protecting civil liberties, should consider what legislation will be proposed and passed if the next Najibullah Zazi is not detected.

[Mr. Mukasey was attorney general of the United States from 2007 to 2009.] [Mukasey/WSJ/30September2009] 

The View From Pakistan's Spies, by David Ignatius. The headquarters of Pakistan's powerful Inter-Services Intelligence directorate is a black-ribbed stucco building in the Aabpara neighborhood of the capital. Its operatives, described by wary Pakistanis as "the boys from Aabpara," play a powerful and mysterious role in the life of the country. Their "tentacles," as one ISI officer terms the agency's spy networks, stretch deep into neighboring Afghanistan.

The ISI agreed to open its protective curtain slightly for me last week. This unusual outreach included a long and animated conversation with Lt. Gen. Ahmed Shuja Pasha, the agency's director general, as well as a detailed briefing from its counterterrorism experts. Under the ground rules, I cannot quote Pasha directly, but I can offer a sense of how his agency looks at key issues - including the Afghanistan war and the ISI's sometimes prickly relationship with America.

At an operational level, the ISI is a close partner of the CIA. Officers of the two services work together nearly every night on joint operations against al-Qaeda in Pakistan's tribal areas, perhaps the most dangerous region in the world. Information from the ISI has helped the CIA plan its Predator drone attacks, which have killed 14 of the top 20 targets over the past several years.

But on the political level, there is mistrust on both sides. The United States worries that the ISI isn't sharing all it knows about Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan. The Pakistanis, meanwhile, view the United States as an unreliable ally that starts fights it doesn't know how to finish.

A test of this fragile partnership is the debate over the new Afghanistan strategy proposed by Gen. Stanley McChrystal. The ISI leadership thinks the United States can't afford to lose in Afghanistan, and it worries about a security vacuum there that would endanger Pakistan. But at the same time, the ISI fears that a big military surge, like the up to 40,000 additional troops McChrystal wants, could be counterproductive.

ISI officials believe Washington should be realistic about its war objectives. If victory is defined as obliteration of the Taliban, the United States will never win. But the United States can achieve the more limited aim of rough political stability, if it is patient.

In the ISI's view, America makes a mistake in thinking it must solve every problem on its own. In Afghanistan, it should work with President Hamid Karzai, who, for all his imperfections, has one essential quality that American strategists lack - he's an Afghan. ISI officials suggest that Karzai should capitalize on the post-election ferment by calling for a cease-fire so that he can form a broadly based government that includes some Taliban representatives.

ISI officials say they want to help America with political reconciliation in Afghanistan. But they argue that to achieve this goal, the U.S. must change its posture - moving from "ruler mode" to "support mode" - so that Afghan voices can be heard.

The American suspicion that the ISI is withholding information about the Taliban, or is otherwise "hedging its bets," makes ISI leaders visibly angry. Pakistanis have the most to lose from a Taliban victory in Kabul, they argue, because it would inevitably strengthen the Taliban in Pakistan, too. A Pakistani version of Mohammad Omar is anathema to them, the ISI leaders say.

As for American allegations that the ISI maintains direct links with Siraj Haqqani, a key ally of the Taliban, the ISI officials insist it isn't so. They do have a network of agents within the insurgent groups and tribes, but that's part of a spy agency's job. America's suspicion that Pakistan secretly pulls the Taliban's strings is many years out of date, they contend.

One ISI analyst loudly calls my name at the end of a briefing and then recites a summary of Pakistani casualties since Sept. 11, 2001, from terrorism. The list totals 5,362 dead and 10,483 wounded. "Trust us," says another ISI official, referring to this casualty toll. "Do not interfere in a way that infringes on our sovereignty and makes us look bad in the eyes of the public."

Talking with ISI leaders, I am reminded of something you see around the world these days. People want to help America more than we sometimes think. But they want to be treated with respect - as full partners, not as useful CIA assets.

Trust is always a conditional word when you are talking about intelligence activities, which are built around deception. But in this case, where America and Pakistan share common interests, the opportunities are real. [Ignatius/29September2009/WashingtonPost



Intelligence Community Legal Reference Book. The Office of the Director of National Intelligence last month published a revised "Intelligence Community Legal Reference Book" (pdf), updated through May 2009.

The 950-page document, which is more than 250 pages longer than the 2007 edition, includes basic intelligence-related legal materials such as the text of the National Security Act and various executive orders and procedures for intelligence sharing. 

It is available at


The Defence of the Realm: The Authorized History of MI5, by Christopher Andrew. This book marks an unprecedented publishing event: to mark the centenary of its foundation, the British Security Service, MI5, has for the first time opened its archives to an independent historian. The book reveals the precise role of the Security Service in twentieth-century British history, from its foundation by Captain Kell of the British Army in October 1909, through two world wars, up to and including its present roles in counter-espionage and counter-terrorism. The book describes how MI5 has been managed, what its relationship has been with government, where it has triumphed and where it has failed. In all of this no restriction has been placed on the judgements made by the author.

The book also reveals the identities of previously unknown enemies of the UK whose activities have been uncovered by the Service, adds significantly to our knowledge of many celebrated events and notorious individuals, and definitively lays to rest a number of persistent myths; above all, it shows the place of this previously extremely secretive organisation within the United Kingdom. Few books could make such an immediate and extraordinary increase to our understanding of British history over the past century.


Nicolae Plesita. Gen. Nicolae Plesita, a die-hard Communist and ruthless chief of the Securitate secret police who arranged shelter in Romania for terrorist Carlos the Jackal, and was tried for the bombing of Radio Free Europe has died. He was 80.

Plesita died in Bucharest in a Romanian Intelligence Service hospital, where he was being treated for various illnesses including diabetes, according to family members.

Plesita commanded the Securitate's foreign intelligence service from 1980 to 1984. He gained notoriety for his contacts with Venezuelan-born terrorist Ilich Ramirez Sanchez, known as Carlos the Jackal.

Ramirez was hired by the Securitate on the orders of dictator Nicolae Ceausescu to assassinate Romanian dissidents in France and bomb the Radio Free Europe offices in Munich in 1981. Nine people were injured in the attack on the Munich-based radio station, which broadcast into communist Eastern Europe.

In 1998, Plesita told court prosecutors that Ceausescu had ordered him to find temporary shelter for Ramirez in Romania after the bombing. Ceausescu sold arms and explosives to Ramirez and enabled him to produce counterfeit passports and driver's licenses, Romanian media reported.

After the 1989 anti-communist revolt, Plesita faced a military trial in Romania for being an accomplice in the Radio Free Europe attack, in which nine people were injured. The trial was interrupted several times and he was eventually found innocent earlier this year.

In post-communist Romania, Plesita continued to attract attention with his revelations from the Communist period, and showed no remorse for having crushed anti-communist dissent. [WashingtonPost/2October2009] 



Wednesday, 7 October 2009 - Saturday, 10 October 2009 – Washington, DC - ThrillSpy International Film Festival. ThrillSpy International Film Festival, sponsored by the National Museum of Crime and Punishment and the International Spy Museum, provides a showcase and celebration of the exciting thriller and spy genre of films and novels, will hold its inaugural event in Washington this October. ThrillSpy brings together new independent filmmakers with fans and content distributors who appreciate their creativity. The festival is a four-day event which includes film screenings in Washington’s Penn Quarter, educational lectures, socials, book signings, a tour of the International Spy Museum, and concludes with a ThrillSpy Awards Masquerade Gala. Films this year include special selections from the Cannes and Sundance film festivals. The opening night film is the D.C. premier of The Champagne Spy by Nadav Schirman, an international award-winning documentary about a true “Bond-like” Cold War spy. The festival will also showcase Maryland director Brian Davis’ Academy Award–winning documentary If A Body Meet A Body, which highlights the lives of three employees at the world’s busiest coroner’s office. Street Boss will also make its U.S. debut at ThrillSpy. This crime thriller explores how the FBI brought down one of Detroit’s most infamous mobsters.
For more information please contact or visit

October 11, 2009 - Wheaton, IL - The AFIO Midwest Chapter visits Cantigny - First Division Museum. The Museum is located at 15151 Winfield Road, Wheaton, IL 60189. ( Registration is $10. Arrival is at 1:00pm where we will then take a tour of the Robert McCormick Mansion, the First Division Museum and the tank park. Dinner is scheduled at 5:30pm and is $25. Please contact Angelo Diliberti at 847-931-4184 for more details. Please RSVP ASAP to Attendees will need to provide information for security purposes and to register for FREE parking.

Tuesday, 13 October 2009, 1130 hrs - Tampa, FL - The AFIO Suncoast Chapter meets for an Octoberfest with Derek Harvey, Director of COE, speaking at the Officers' Club. Luncheon will at the MacDill Officers' Club -- check-in registration will commence at 1130 hours, opening ceremonies and lunch at noon, followed by guest speaker with a most interesting and timely presentation. The lunch entree is Octoberfest style pork, red cabbage, fresh salad, and German chocolate cake for dessert -- again, all for $15.00, inclusive. We will have the wine and soda bar open at 1100 for those that wish to come early for our social time.
Our chapter was honored to be invited to the grand opening/ribbon cutting of the new CENTCOM Joint Intelligence and Operation Center (JIOC) on 26 August. During that ceremony CENTCOM's commander, General Petraeus, spoke at some length about the new Afghanistan-Pakistan Intelligence Center of Excellence (COE) to be located in the new JOIC. Shortly after, we were successful with arranging Derek Harvey, the Director of the COE, to join us as our guest speaker on 13 October.
As some back ground: "Derek Harvey, a recently retired Colonel for the US Army and current senior leader within the Defense Intelligence Agency, became one of General Petraeus' most trusted analysts during Operation Iraqi Freedom and was recently hand selected by GEN Petaeus to head the new Afghanistan-Pakistan Intelligence Center of Excellence (COE). The COE mission is to provide responsive, reliable and relevant all-source analysis to decision makers conducting and supporting operations in Afghanistan and Pakistan. The COE works to coordinate, integrate and focus analytic effort across the intelligence community."
The COE is a new entity in the intelligence and security environment, and well/highly placed. We think you will be well informed/served by Mr. Harvey's comments and following discussions.
We recommend you not miss this luncheon and guest speaker--
Reply ASAP to with your name and any guests accompanying; your check payable to 'Suncoast Chapter, AFIO' (or cash) should be presented at time of check-in for the luncheon.
Should you not have 'bumper stickers' or ID card for access to MacDill AFB, please so state in your response. If we don't have your license number at hand in our member/guest roster we'll be in quick contact with you to gather needed data. And don't forget, all of you needing special roster access should proceed to the Bayshore Gate entrance to MacDill AFB (need directions, let us know).
We look forward to your response -- hopefully also seeing you at the O'Club, 13 Oct. If not, we'll have you on the list for our December luncheon.
Questions/Inquiries to Nathaniel (Nat) Alderman, Jr..Past Officer, Current ExCom Member v/ 727 576-2024 or by email to

13-16 October 2009 - Las Vegas, NV - AFIO National Symposium - Co-Sponsored with the U.S. Department of Energy, Nellis AFB, Creech AFB. AFIO 2009 Fall Symposium/Convention in Las Vegas, Nevada Event has sold out. Thank you for your strong interest. Details appear at the top of this edition of the Weekly Notes in the right-hand column.

14 October 2009, 11:30 a.m. - Albuquerque, NM - The AFIO Tom Smith New Mexico Chapter luncheon. The luncheon will be at Calico Cantina/Vernon’s Steak House on the west side of 4th Street, about ½ mile north of Osuna.  The address is 6855 4th Street and our meeting place is the back room behind the package store. Questions to Tom Bostwick at

14 October 2009 - Laurel, Maryland - The National Cryptologic Museum Foundation Hosts General Membership Meeting on "Cyber Challenges Facing the U.S. in the 21st Century." The NCMF hosts their general membership meeting and have invited SecDef Robert Gates and CIA Dir Leon Panetta to be the speakers. The theme is "Cyber Challenges Facing the U.S. in the 21st Century." Sen. Barbara Mikulski will give a few words to the membership. A continental breakfast and buffet lunch will be provided. On October 15-16 NSA's Center for Cryptologic History sponsors their Symposium on Cryptologic History. The them: "Global Perspectives on Cryptologic History." For further program information and fees visit

Wednesday, 14 October 2009; 6:30 pm - Washington, DC - Chinese Cyber Trends: The 21st Century Battlefield - at the International Spy Museum. There is a massive effort in the People’s Republic of China (PRC) to win global electronic dominance over this battlefield. Join Connie Allen, retired senior U.S. Army counterintelligence special agent and professor, Centre for Counterintelligence and Security Studies, as she explores how the PRC uses disruption, sabotage, denial of service, misinformation and deception in their cyber attacks. In concert with the Department of Homeland Security’s Cyber Security Awareness Month, the International Spy Museum is unveiling the first gallery dedicated exclusively to cyber security, Weapons of Mass Disruption. SPY invites attendees of the Chinese Cyber Trends: The 21st Century Battlefield to an exclusive after-hours viewing of this new gallery immediately following the program. Tickets: $12.50 per person. To register visit

15 October 2009, 11:30 a.m. - Scottsdale, AZ – The AFIO Arizona Chapter hosts Jon Altmann who will speak on "Reserve Intelligence - More than just a Weekend Activity." Jon Altmann, a retired Senior Chief Intelligence Specialist, will discuss the real time role that the US Navy's Reserve Intelligence units play since Desert Storm and 9-11. His topic will be "Reserve Intelligence - More than just a weekend activity." Our speaker will bring members of the Phoenix US Navy reserve unit to assist him in the presentation.
Event is being held at: McCormick RANCH GOLF COURSE (7505 McCormick Parkway, Scottsdale AZ 85258 ~ Phone 480.948.0260) Our meeting fees will be as follows: • $20.00 for AFIO members• $22.00 for guests. For reservations or questions, please email Simone or or call and leave a message on 602.570.6016.

15 - 16 October 2009 - Laurel, Maryland - NSA’s Center for Cryptologic History sponsors the Symposium on Cryptologic History on "Global Perspectives on Cryptologic History."  This special symposium is held every two years. Historians from the Center, other parts of the Intelligence Community, and the Department of Defense will join distinguished scholars from American and foreign academic institutions, along with veterans of the profession and others interested in cryptology, for two days of reflection and debate on the cryptologic past.  Under this year’s theme, "Global Perspectives on Cryptologic History," participants will consider the impact of cryptology within the context of transnational history. The panels include a range of technological, operational, foreign relations, organizational, counterintelligence, policy, and even literary themes. Past symposia have featured scholarship setting out new ways of considering cryptologic history. The mix of practitioners and scholars on occasion can be volatile, but the result is a significantly enhanced appreciation for the context of past events. This year’s symposium promises to tackle controversial subjects head-on. Breaks and luncheons, presenting rare opportunities for lively discussion and interaction with leading scholars and distinguished experts, will be included in the registration fees. The symposium will be held at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory’s Kossiakoff Center in Laurel, Maryland. Make plans to join us for either one or both days of this intellectually stimulating conference. For more information, contact Dr. Kent Sieg, Symposium coordinator, at 301-688-2336 or

18 - 21 October 2009 - San Antonio, TX - the US Geospatial Intelligence Foundation presents 6th Annual GEOINT Symposium. Intelligence, Defense, and Homeland Security Community professionals are invited to hear from the DNI, USD(I), CDR, NORTHCOM, D/NGA, D/NRO, D/DARPA, USAF A2, CDR, US Army Intelligence Center, the IC CIO's, and many others. In addition, almost 200 exhibitors will show their products and services in an exhibit hall of over 100,000 sq. ft. Details on the event are at:
AFIO members are urged to view and, if possible, consider attending this always impressive event.

18-19 October 2009 - Tel-Aviv, Israel - The 2009 Annual Conference of the International Intelligence History Association will be held at Bar-Ilan University. The conference program can be viewed here.

Tuesday, 20 October 2009; 6:30 pm – Washington, DC - CIA Magic: The Official CIA Manual of Trickery and Deception at the Spy Museum. In the early days of the Cold War, the CIA initiated a top-secret program, code-named MKULTRA, to counter Soviet mind-control and interrogation techniques. Realizing that its officers and agents might need to clandestinely deploy newly developed pills, potions, and powders against the adversary, the CIA hired America’s most famous magician, John Mulholland, to write two secret manuals on sleight-of-hand and covert communication techniques. Twenty years later, virtually all documents related to MKULTRA—including Mulholland’s manuals—were thought destroyed. Only recently, a surviving copy of each manual, complete with photographs and illustrations, was discovered. In their new book, The Official CIA Manual of Trickery and Deception, H. Keith Melton, internationally renowned espionage historian, and Bob Wallace, former director of the CIA’s Office of Technical Services (OTS), reveal for the first time Mulholland’s complete illustrated instructions for CIA officers on the magician’s approach to manipulation and communication. This eye-opening evening will explore the rich overlap between stage magic and espionage and reveal the “never before seen” secrets of how the magicians’ art also enhanced the spy’s craft. Tickets: $20 per person Where: International Spy Museum, 800 F St NW, Washington, DC, Gallery Place/Chinatown Metrorail Station To register:

22 October 2009 - San Francisco, CA - The AFIO Jim Quesada Chapter hosts Dr. Kalev Sepp, Senior Lecturer in Defense Analysis at the U.S. Naval Postgraduate School and former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations Capabilities. Dr. Sepp will be discussing global counterterrorism strategy and policy oversight regarding special operations world-wide. He will include his observations concerning his recent trip to North Korea. RSVP required. The meeting will be held at United Irish Cultural Center, 2700 45th Avenue, San Francisco (between Sloat and Wawona). 11:30 AM no host cocktails; noon - luncheon. $25 member rate with advance reservation and payment; $35 non-member. E-mail RSVP to Mariko Kawaguchi (please indicate meat or fish): or mail check made out to "AFIO" to: Mariko Kawaguchi, P.O. Box 117578 Burlingame, CA 94011.

23-24 October 2009 - Bethel, CT - The Naval Cryptologic Veterans Association - New England Chapter (NCVA-NE) will hold a fall MINI-REUNION Event to occur at the Stony Hill Inn, US Rt 6, Bethel, Ct. For additional information, you may call (518) 664-8032 Questions: Victor Knorowski, 8 Eagle Lane, Mechanicville, NY 12118, E-mail:

Wednesday, 28 October 2009, 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. - Newport News, VA - AFIO Norman Forde Hampton Roads Chapter hosts Cyber Security Workshop
Where: Christopher Newport University, Newport News. Co-hosted by AFIO Norman Forde Hampton Roads and with CNU's Center for American Studies (CAS).
The Workshop entails a mid-day session (11 a.m. - 1 p.m.) featuring a keynote speaker, followed by a panel of four cyber security experts from government and business sectors. A light reception will follow the panel discussion. For more info:

28 October, 2009, 11:30 am - Rockland, Maine - The CIA Retirees Assn (CIRA) New England chapter Fall meeting will be held at Samoset Resort ( Guest speaker Will DeLong, security analyst for FEMA/MEMA, on current DHS security programs. For further info contact Richard Gay, CIRA/NE program chair: 207-374-2169

Wednesday, 28 October 2009; 6:30 pm - Washington, DC - Emerging Cyber Threats: Myths and Realities - at the International Spy Museum. As we witness the rise of cyber warfare, just how vulnerable are we? Separate the myths from the realities with a distinguished panel of experts, including: Melissa Hathaway - Former acting senior director for cyberspace for the National Security and Homeland Security Councils; James Lewis - Director and senior fellow, Technology and Public Policy Program, Center for Strategic and International Studies; and Keith Epstein - Award-winning writer and investigative journalist at BusinessWeek. The panel will explore the wide range of current threats, the steps the government and businesses are taking to combat areas of vulnerability, and the challenges that lie ahead in the rapidly evolving cyber realm. In concert with the Department of Homeland Security’s Cyber Security Awareness Month, the International Spy Museum is unveiling the first gallery dedicated exclusively to cyber security, Weapons of Mass Disruption. SPY invites attendees of the Emerging Cyber Threats: Myths and Realities to an exclusive after-hours viewing of this new gallery immediately following the program. Tickets: $15 per person. For more information or to register visit

5 - 6 November 2009 - London, UK - "A Centenary Conference on The British Security and Intelligence Services"
This impressive event will be a review of the formation, growth, maturity and future of the British Security and Intelligence Services on the occasion of their Centenary The precise location in central London will be supplied registrants, only. A formal Gala Dinner occurs on November 5.
The group hosting the event has offered a special rate for AFIO members who register for the "Full Conference" before October 10 for a rate of �175; after that date the event price is �245.00
AFIO member fee for dinner reception only [Nov 5] is �90. ALL PRICES EXCLUDE VAT @ 15%
For further information, view PDF of the event.
To register, click here to download Word document and follow the instructions.
Questions? Email
The list of confirmed speakers, and the topics, make this a "do not miss" event.
: • Northern Ireland, Parliament, Politics and the ISC; • Spooks, D-Notices, Media; • The Falklands Conflict – a keynote panel; • View from the Commonwealth; • A view from the United States; • The modern era, and the future of intelligence; o JTAC; o interagency cooperation; o Personnel; o A wider community for intelligence; o The future practice of intelligence; • Keynote Speakers;
• The Foundations and The Early Years; • Operation Kronstadt, Sir Paul Dukes and Sidney Reilly; • The inter-war period; • The WWII Era; • The Cold War – keynote panel introduction; • SIS in the Cold War; • Cambridge Spies and the Molehunts; • The impact of Gordievsky; • The history of tradecraft and its development; • Personnel, recruitment and development; • A review of the historical and fictional literature on the Security Services;
Key Speakers and Chairman already confirmed:
Professor Christopher Andrew, Official Historian of the British Security Service (MI5) “Defend the Realm: The Authorised History of MI5”
Rear Admiral Nick Wilkinson, CB, former D-Notice Secretary and author of the recently published “Secrecy and the Media, The Official History of the D Notice System”
Professor Sir Lawrence Freedman, KCMG, Official Historian of the Falklands War
Major General Julian Thompson, CB, OBE, Commander of 3 Commando Brigade, Falklands War
Hugh Bicheno, author of “The Unofficial History of the Falklands War”
Gill Bennett, former Chief Historian of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Nigel West, intelligence historian and author of “TRIPLEX”
H. Keith Melton, noted historian of tradecraft and the clandestine devices, advisor to U.S. government agencies.
Hayden Peake, Curator of the CIA’s Historical Intelligence Collection
Victor Suvarov, GRU defector to the British Secret Intelligence Service (MI6), author of “The Chief Culprit!
Tom King (Lord King of Bridgewater) former Defence Secretary, former Northern Ireland Secretary, founder Chairman of the Parliament’s Intelligence and Security Committee.
Dan Mulvenna, ex-RCMP Security Service counterintelligence officer, Professor lecturing on counterintelligence and counter terrorism to the U.S. Intelligence community at the Counterintelligence Centre in Washington, D.C.
Harry Ferguson, former MI6 and NIS officer, novelist and historian, author of “Spy”, and “Operation Kronstadt”
Gordon Corera, Security Correspondent, BBC, Presenter of Radio 4 Series “MI6: A Century in the Shadows”

Tuesday, 10 November 2009, 5 to 8:30 pm - Washington, DC - Minute by Minute: The Role of Intelligence in the Cuban Missile Crisis - at the International Spy Museum. Can students change the course of history? Enliven your teaching of the Cold War with a newly published case-based simulation in which students play the role of intelligence analysts at the CIA in 1962. By examining declassified intelligence documents and U-2 photographs at various stages of the crisis, students “live” the crisis rather than only read about it. In this social studies standards-based lesson, students are challenged to make decisions and recommendations based on primary documents and photos. The outcome of the crisis is in their hands: will their analysis provide President Kennedy with the information he needs to avoid nuclear catastrophe? The workshop includes: A Spy’s Eye View: Peter Earnest, Executive Director and former CIA spy discusses the role of intelligence during the Cold War period. Minute by Minute: The Role of Intelligence in the Cuban Missile Crisis: Participate in a simulation of the lesson.  The Secret History of History: A behind-the- scenes exploration of cold-war related exhibits at the Spy Museum with Museum Historian, Dr. Thomas Boghardt. Your classroom copy of Minute by Minute: The Role of Intelligence in the Cuban Missile Crisis: a 125-page lesson with accompanying CD and DVD containing exclusive CIA footage (a $30 value). A picnic-style dinner (sandwich, chips, fruit, cookie & drink).Complimentary admission to the Museum on Tuesday, November 10th (for early arrivals). Tickets: $35 per teacher To register for this workshop call 202.654.0932 (limited space available—register early)

Thursday, 12 November 2009; 12 noon to 1 pm – Washington, DC - Defend the Realm: The Authorized History of MI5 at the Spy Museum. As MI5, Britain’s legendary security service, marks its 100th anniversary, the agency has given an independent scholar unrestricted access to its records for the very first time. Join Cambridge University professor and International Spy Museum emeritus advisory board member Christopher Andrew, the author of Defend the Realm, as he reveals the precise role of MI5 in twentieth-century British history: from its foundation in 1909, through two world wars, and its present roles in counterespionage and counterterrorism. Andrew describes how MI5 has been managed, what its relationship has been with government, where it has triumphed, and where it has failed. Defend the Realm also reveals the identities of previously unknown enemies of the United Kingdom whose activities have been uncovered by MI5. It adds significantly to our knowledge of many celebrated events and notorious individuals, and definitively lays to rest a number of persistent myths. Free! No registration required! 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.

17 November 2009, 6:30 p.m. - Miami, FL - The Ted Shackley AFIO Miami Chapter at FBI Field Office - EVENT HAS SOLD OUT
The Federal Bureau of Investigation has invited AFIO Members and their selected , cleared guests to attend a special briefing and Class at the Miami Field Office at 6:30 PM on November 17, 2009 . There is no charge for this event. This very special briefing and Class will be from 6:30 to 8:30 pm. A light snack, courtesy of AFIO, will be served. We will be addressed by the top officials of the Miami Field Office on very important topics. In order to be cleared to attend, we must submit the following information to the FBI:
1. Your birth name.
2. Your address.
3. Your date of birth.
4. Your social security number.
Please provide this information to me within the next 10 days. If you intend to invite a special, trusted guest , we need the same information. Once you respond, I will provide you with the information you need, including address and the Gate clearance protocol.
Replies by current registered attendees only to: Tom Spencer at or call 305 648 0940 Event has Sold Out.

19 November 2009, 11:30 a.m. - Scottsdale, AZ - The AFIO Arizona Chapter hosts Dr. Jim Shamadan who will speak on "Resolution of the Starflash Explosives Factory Fiasco."

Dr. Jim Schamadan did his undergraduate work in chemical engineering and received his M.D., cum laude from Ohio State University. A military medical officer in Southeast Asia during the Vietnam conflict, he served as a physician in Kuwait and Iraq during Desert Storm. From September 2001 until January 2003, Dr. Schamadan served as Special Assistant to the Governor of Arizona for Homeland Security. Dr. Shamadan’s talk will cover the events in September 1997, when over a decade ago Federal officers executed a search warrant and associated arrest documents for the owner of a munitions manufacturing facility known as Starflash Ranch in New River Arizona. In addition to the main ranch house, they discovered several booby-trapped underground bunkers, training videos, and a manufacturing facility called “The Shed." Federal authorities had planned to destroy the bunkers using novel technical means but citizens of New RIver opposed this action and the matter reverted to State authorities. The speaker will discuss how the episode ended using information about this incident that has not previously been released.
Event is being held at: McCormick Ranch Golf Club (7505 McCormick Parkway, Scottsdale AZ 85258 ~ Phone 480.948.0260) 
Our meeting fees will be as follows: • $20.00 for AFIO members• $22.00 for guests. 
For reservations or questions, please email Simone or or phone and leave a message on 602.570.6016. Art Kerns, President of the AZ Chapter,

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


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