AFIO Weekly Intelligence Notes #44-11 dated 22 November 2011

[Editors' Note: The WIN editors attempt to include a wide range of articles and commentary in the Weekly Notes to inform and educate our readers. However, the views expressed in the articles are purely those of the authors, and in no way reflect support or endorsement from the WIN editors or the AFIO officers and staff. We welcome comments from the WIN readers on any and all articles and commentary.]
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Section IV -   Obituaries, Books, Research Requests and Coming Events


Books and Documentaries

Research Requests

Coming Educational Events

Current Calendar New and/or Next Two Months ONLY

Reminder:  There will be no WIN's next week, the 29th of November, in celebration of the Thanksgiving holidays.  

They will resume the following week, on 6 December.

Hold these Dates: AFIO 2012 NATIONAL INTELLIGENCE SYMPOSIUM at the Defense Intelligence Agency and at other venues.

26-28 April 2012 - Tysons Corner, VA - AFIO National holds the 2012 National Intelligence Symposium at the Defense Intelligence Agency, Bolling Air Force Base, D.C. and other venues. DIA Director Ronald Burgess will be hosting us in this secure facility on Friday, April 27, 2012, as part of this 3-day Symposium. Place this date on your calendars. More information to follow.
HOTEL ACCOMMODATIONS: There will be no "convention" hotel or convention rates because online rates from another of website are often lower than ones supposedly reserved for event attendees.
Those expecting to attend are urged to make reservations ASAP at best rate available ONLINE from;;; or other hotel service of your preference. Seek hotel at, or close to, either the Crowne Plaza Hotel or Sheraton Premiere Hotel, both in Tysons Corner, VA.

Tentative Schedule: If coming from out of town and staying at hotel, plan to arrive late on Wednesday, April 25 ready for a full two day event starting early on Thursday, April 26 and continuing on Friday, April 27. Friday evening will end with the "Spies in Black Ties" Banquet. And Saturday morning, April 28, will be Chapter Workshop and General Membership Meeting. Symposium closes at 11 a.m.

Event is open to U.S. Citizens, ONLY.

AFIO Winter Luncheon - Some Seats Remain

John D. Bennett

Director, National Clandestine Service, CIA

[DNCS Remarks are Off The Record]


J. M. Berger

Author of Jihad Joe: Americans Who Go To War in the Name of Islam

John Walker Lindh, Anwar al-Awlaki, Nidal Malik Hasan
and other Muslims in this country seeking to kill as many Americans as possible in the name of Islam

Thursday, 8 December 2011
10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Crowne Plaza, Tysons Corner, VA

Register here



US Probes Cyber Attack on Water System. US federal investigators are looking into a report that hackers managed to remotely shut down a utility's water pump in central Illinois last week, in what could be the first known foreign cyber attack on a US industrial system.

The November 8 incident was described in a one-page report from the Illinois Statewide Terrorism and Intelligence Center, according to Joe Weiss, a prominent expert on protecting infrastructure from cyber attacks.

The attackers obtained access to the network of a water utility in a rural community west of the state capital Springfield with credentials stolen from a company that makes software used to control industrial systems, according to the account obtained by Weiss. It did not explain the motive of the attackers. 

He said that the same group may have attacked other industrial targets or be planning strikes using credentials stolen from the same software maker.

The US Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Bureau of Investigation are examining the matter, said DHS spokesman Peter Boogaard.

"At this time there is no credible corroborated data that indicates a risk to critical infrastructure entities or a threat to public safety," he said, declining to elaborate further. An FBI spokesman in Illinois did not return phone calls seeking comment. [Read more: Reuters/19November2011]

Mysterious Symbols in China Desert Are Spy Satellite Targets, Expert Says. Newfound Google Maps images have revealed an array of mysterious structures and patterns etched into the surface of China's Gobi Desert. The media - from mainstream to fringe - has wildly speculated that they might be Chinese weapons-testing sites, satellite calibration targets, street maps of Washington, D.C., and New York City, or even messages to (or from) aliens.

It turns out that they are almost definitely used to calibrate China's spy satellites.

So says Jonathon Hill, a research technician and mission planner at the Mars Space Flight Facility at Arizona State University, which operates many of the cameras used during NASA's Mars missions. Hill works with images of the Martian surface taken by rovers and satellites, as well as data from Earth-orbiting NASA instruments.

The grids of zigzagging white lines seen in two of the images - the strangest of the various desert structures - are spy satellite calibration targets. Satellite cameras focus on the grids, which measure approximately 0.65 miles wide by 1.15 miles long, and use them to orient themselves in space. 

The existence of these calibration targets may seem suspicious or revelatory, but Hill said it really isn't; China was already known to operate spy satellites, and many other countries [including the United States] do so as well. In fact, the U.S. also uses calibration targets. "An example I found just now is a calibration target for the Corona spy satellites, built back in the 1960s, down in Casa Grande, Ariz., [at coordinates] 32� 48' 24.74" N, 111� 43' 21.30" W," Hill told Life's Little Mysteries, a sister site to LiveScience. [Read more: Wolchover/LiveScience/16November2011]

American Spies Outed, CIA Suffers in Lebanon. The CIA's operations in Lebanon have been badly damaged after Hezbollah identified and captured a number of U.S. spies recently, current and former U.S. officials told The Associated Press. The intelligence debacle is particularly troubling because the CIA saw it coming.

Hezbollah's longtime leader, Sheik Hassan Nasrallah, boasted on television in June that he had rooted out at least two CIA spies who had infiltrated the ranks of Hezbollah, which the U.S. considers a terrorist group closely allied with Iran. Though the U.S. Embassy in Lebanon officially denied the accusation, current and former officials concede that it happened and the damage has spread even further.

In recent months, CIA officials have secretly been scrambling to protect their remaining spies - foreign assets or agents working for the agency - before Hezbollah can find them.

To be sure, some deaths are to be expected in shadowy spy wars. It's an extremely risky business and people get killed. But the damage to the agency's spy network in Lebanon has been greater than usual, several former and current U.S. officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly about security matters.

The Lebanon crisis is the latest mishap involving CIA counterintelligence, the undermining or manipulating of the enemy's ability to gather information. Former CIA officials have said that once-essential skill has been eroded as the agency shifted from outmaneuvering rival spy agencies to fighting terrorists. In the rush for immediate results, former officers say, tradecraft has suffered. [Read more: Goldman&Apuzzo/AP/21November2011]

William Hague Hails Not so Secret Spies. Only two decades ago, the foreign secretary would have been in the strange position of not being able to even confirm that MI6 existed - such was the secrecy surrounding its work.

But on Wednesday, he gave a detailed speech on the work of British intelligence, with the three heads of the relevant agencies - MI5, MI6 and GCHQ - all seated on the front row.

The speech focused on the contribution the agencies make to national security.

Included in it were new details of a plot they foiled last spring by Colonel Gaddafi to carry out car bombings in Benghazi against Libyan rebels and western representatives.

But there was also recognition that the controversies of the last decade have taken their toll. The faulty intelligence on Iraq's weapons of mass destruction knocked public confidence in the core business of MI6, while allegations of complicity in torture have hit the domestic security service MI5 and to a lesser extent MI6. [Read more: Corera/BBC/16November2011]

FBI Wants More Power to Tackle Hacking. The US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) wants closer ties with the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and National Security Agency (NSA) in order to deal with the hacking threat.

FBI director Robert Mueller spoke at the San Francisco Commonwealth club yesterday and said that closer links are needed if the US is to tackle its third biggest threat, hacking.

This means that computer crimes come after terrorism and espionage on the security organisations' to-do list. Although the FBI, CIA and NSA are already collaborating on some investigations, Mueller said that there is a need for more cooperation.

"We have had to adjust our organisation structure," he said, according to the Financial Times, as he suggested that perhaps something more concrete is needed.

Collaboration is one thing, but Mueller also wants more power over communications and said that the FBI needs the right to monitor social networking services and accounts, something that no one else is likely to agree with. [Read more: Neal/Inquirer/18November2011]

Dear Col. Gadhafi: How an ex-CIA Arabist, GOP lobbyist, and ex-RNC/AIPAC fundraiser sought to help Gadhafi for $10 million. Confidential documents posted to Facebook by a group called WikiLeaks Libya show that a motley group of Washington fixers-for-hire mounted an 11th-hour push in April to revive Moammer Gadhafi's sagging Washington reputation. And all they asked for their services was the nominal fee of $10 million from the Libyan strongman, who was killed by rebel forces last month in his hometown of Sirte. The story was first reported late Thursday by the New York Times' Scott Shane and Penn Bullock.

The confidential documents, addressed to Your "Excellency Moammar Khaddafi," and dated April 17, "contained a shock for the Americans: a three-page letter addressed to Colonel Qaddafi . . . [offering] the Libyan dictator the lobbying services of what he called the 'American Action Group' to outmaneuver the rebels and win United States government support," Shane and Bullock reported.

"Our group of Libyan sympathizers . . . would like to help to block the actions of your international enemies and to support a normal working relationship with the United States Government," a letter signed by a Belgian member of the proposed lobbying group, Dirk Borgers, said, Shane and Bullock reported.

"Our group . . . working inside the different services, Intelligence, Military, Congress and Administration, of the American government, since 30 plus years," can help "block the actions of your international enemies" and "support a normal working relationship with the United States government," the proposal to Gadhafi stated.

The letter also lists a roster of members for the proposed "American Action Group." The terrorism specialist Neil Livingstone was a lead name; he reportedly recently closed his lobbying firm Executive Action LLC to explore a GOP run for governor in Montana. Also included on the list were Kansas City, Missouri attorney Randell K. Wood of Wood Law Firm LLC; former senior CIA Middle East officer Marty Martin; and Neil Alpert, pitched in the documents as a onetime fundraiser for the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee and the Republican National Committee.

The release of the confidential letter "is especially awkward for Mr. Livingstone," Shane and Bullock noted, since offering his services to Gadhafi could presumably complicate his designs on the Montana governorship. [Read more: Rozen/TheEnvoy/18November2011]

Libyan Fighters Seize Qaddafi's Intelligence Chief. Revolutionary fighters captured Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi's feared intelligence chief on Sunday as the interim government struggled to manage the increasingly thorny quandary of how to get custody of the former dictator's son from a second armed group that had captured him only the day before. 

The military council in the Wadi Shati district said the intelligence chief, Abdullah Senussi, for decades Colonel Qaddafi's brutal enforcer, had been taken prisoner from his sister's house deep in the southern desert without resistance. Mr. Senussi, who was married to a sister of Colonel Qaddafi's wife, was considered one of the regime's hard-liners who had resisted officials who pushed for reforms. He has been wanted in France since 1999, when a Paris court sentenced him in absentia to life in prison for his role in an attack on a French airliner that killed 170 people in 1989.

His seizure capped a weekend of celebrations across the country over the capture of Seif al-Islam el-Qaddafi, one of Colonel Qaddafi's sons and the heir apparent. But that arrest has proved to be a major distraction for Prime Minister Abdel Rahim el-Keeb as he tries to stitch together a cabinet this week among leaders of competing tribes, cities and rebel fighting groups. [Read more: Krauss/NYTimes/20November2011]

Mexico Names Intelligence Chief Interior Minister. Mexico picked the head of the national intelligence agency as the country's new interior minister on Thursday, beefing up the job's security profile as the government attempts to bring violent drug cartels to heel.

Alejandro Poire, director of the Center for Research and National Security (CISEN), succeeds Francisco Blake, who was killed in a helicopter crash on Friday.

Poire, 40, has never held elected office, and spent more than a year staunchly defending President Felipe Calderon's army-led crackdown on the drug gangs as national security spokesman before he moved to the CISEN in September. [Read more: Graham/Reuters/17November2011]

Reports Detail Past CIA Operations in Somalia. The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and US military special operations teams carried out frequent espionage and counter-terrorism missions inside Somalia starting in 2003, according to a recent series of articles in a newspaper focused on the US Army.

Secret operatives who flew or swam to Somalia planted cameras and phone-tapping devices and paid local warlords to help hunt for key figures in Al Qaeda's East African network, the reports in Army Times reveal.

Sean Naylor, a reporter for the privately owned Virginia-based newspaper, attributes the disclosures mostly to anonymous sources currently or formerly affiliated with US military or intelligence services.

For example, he quotes "an intelligence source with long experience in the Horn" indicating that although Al Qaeda's "centre of gravity" was in Mogadishu, "there was a huge support cell split between Nairobi and Mombasa."

Some of the clandestine missions inside Somalia yielded important results, Army Times reports. [Read more: Kelley/TheEastAfrican/20November2011]

Huawei, ZTE Face Scrutiny From U.S. House Intelligence Panel. Chinese phone-equipment makers Huawei Technologies Co. and ZTE Corp. are the focus of a U.S. House intelligence committee investigation into whether the companies' expansion in the U.S. poses a security threat.

The probe will focus on whether the companies' presence provides "the Chinese government an opportunity for greater foreign espionage" and imperils the U.S. telecommunications infrastructure, Representatives Mike Rogers, chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, and Dutch Ruppersberger, the panel's top Democrat, said in a news release yesterday.

"The Chinese are aggressively hacking into our nation's networks, threatening our critical infrastructure and stealing secrets worth millions of dollars in intellectual property from American companies," Ruppersberger, a Maryland Democrat, said in the release. "This jeopardizes our national security and hurts U.S. competitiveness in the world market."

The investigation is part of increasing U.S. government scrutiny of economic espionage by China. [Read more: Bloomberg/18November2011]

Dutch to Build A$1M Espionage Early Warning System. The Netherlands Government is spending �800,000 (A$1.1 million) to build a "Cyber Attack Detector" (CAD) that will "instantly" warn government and business when there are signs of fraud espionage occurring on their networks.

The non-profit Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO) will pair up with Dutch security company Fox-IT to build a system to flag espionage threats early by "analysing a large number of digital espionage indicators."

The TNO is an incubator for pre-commercial technologies, playing a similar role there to Australia's CSIRO.

Fox-IT was the company hired earlier this year to investigate the hacking attack on Dutch certificate authorities, DigiNotar, whose infrastructure was used to issue over 200 fraudulent Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificates.

The attack was a blow to the government which had contracted DigiNotar as one of its official issuer of SSL certificates for government websites.

"Traditional protective equipment such as intrusion detection systems, firewalls, virus scanners, and log analyzers offer inadequate protection," Fox-IT says in its announcement. [Read more: Tung/CSO/17November2011]

Cryptologists Honored at Md. Memorial. They served in silence.

And until they died, they served in secret.

Etched into the National Security Agency/Central Security Service Memorial are three new names of cryptologists - specialists in gathering and decoding intelligence - who died in service to the United States.

Navy Senior Chief Petty Officer David Blake McLendon, Marine Sgt. Lucas T. Pyeatt and Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Michael Strange were honored this month at a ceremony at NSA headquarters in Maryland, where their names were unveiled on the memorial.

Dedicated in 1996, the wall now bears 166 names of Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine and civilian cryptologists who died while serving their country.

The polished stone is shaped into a triangle. At the top are the words, "THEY SERVED IN SILENCE." The names of the fallen cryptologists are listed below.

It's only in the last 10 years that the NSA has declassified and shared the stories behind the names. An online memorial offers profiles and photos of many of those on the wall, dating as far back as 1950.  [Read more:  King/VirginianPilot/22November2011]


How Governments Shop for The Tools in Their Spying Kits. The people who attended a "secretive surveillance conference" in Washington last month were showered with documents - brochures and prospectuses for off-the-shelf surveillance products worthy of many an intelligence service. The documents show a new niche of the national security business: selling advanced surveillance tools to eager customers.

Some of those wound up with The Wall Street Journal, which examines them at length in Saturday's paper.

Intelligence agencies in the U.S. and abroad have long conducted their own surveillance. But in recent years, a retail market for surveillance tools has sprung up from "nearly zero" in 2001 to about $5 billion a year, said Jerry Lucas, president of TeleStrategies Inc., the show's operator.

Critics say the market represents a new sort of arms trade supplying Western governments and repressive nations alike. "The Arab Spring countries all had more sophisticated surveillance capabilities than I would have guessed," said Andrew McLaughlin, who recently left his post as deputy chief technology officer in the White House, referring to the Middle Eastern and African nations racked by violent crackdowns on dissent.

The companies marketing these products say they only do so to governments and law enforcement agencies, The Journal reported, but that doesn't mean the results aren't sometimes eyebrow-raising. [Read more: Mann/AtlanticWire/19November2011]

Why is Google in love with Bletchley Park? Technology giant Google normally has its eyes fixed firmly on the future. But it has turned its attention to an old house in England to help preserve a slice of computing history.

For nearly half a century after World War II, a Victorian manor house in Buckinghamshire lay neglected and unloved, its dilapidated buildings falling into disrepair.

By the early 90s, plans even emerged to tear down the assorted boarded-up huts around the house and erect a supermarket in their place.

For reasons of national security, a veil of secrecy shrouded Bletchley Park. Only in the last 20 years has the extraordinary story of breaking the code of the German Enigma machine finally become well-known.

The secret work there had, it is believed, shortened the war by two years.

But the veil of secrecy came at a cost, not just to the physical fabric of the site, but also, some believe, to Britain and its ability to build on its achievements in computer technology.

The Bletchley Park site, in Milton Keynes, is - at least superficially - a world away from Google's headquarters in Mountain View, California, known as the Googleplex.

But a desire, driven by a few individuals, to nurture the past has led to one of the world's top technology firms taking an unusually close interest in Bletchley Park and its legacy. [Read more: Corera/BBC/15November2011]

After the US Pulls Out, will CIA Rely More on Afghan Mercenaries? With his broad cheekbones, hair swept back under a sequined cap, and the gentle manner of a well-to-do Pashtun, Atal Afghanzai might easily pass for a doctor or an engineer.

Instead, his career path led into a cloak-and-dagger world of covert armies and foreign agents, until a rare lethal run-in with an Afghan police chief landed him on death row in Kabul's most notorious prison.

Young and motivated, Mr. Afghanzai is one of thousands of Afghan mercenaries believed to be working with the CIA to help America battle Al Qaeda, the Taliban, and their allies. His story - confirmed by US diplomats, other Western officials, and Afghan authorities - illustrates the military advantages of this secret war. But, with the US poised to ramp up reliance on paramilitaries like Afghanzai as it pulls out frontline troops, the practice is raising the ire of Afghans who accuse the groups of human rights abuses. [Read more: Cavendish/ChristianScienceMonitor/16November2011]


Propaganda is Not a Dirty Word. 1975 was a very bad year for the Central Intelligence Agency.

The CIA is still living with the damage caused by Senator Frank Church and his army of arrogant young Church Committee lawyers. Spurred on by Watergate, they descended upon CIA headquarters like locusts, scurrying into every nook and cranny, seeking to expose alleged abuses of law and power.

They were determined to rein in the "rogue elephant," and they did. CIA covert action activities essentially disappeared from 1975 until the events of Sept. 11, 2001. And then they reappeared only in part - with the authorization to use covert (and sometimes not so covert) paramilitary action to drive al-Qaeda out of Afghanistan and to decapitate its leadership.

The CIA's charter gives it three primary functions: The collection and analysis of intelligence, and covert action. All of our intelligence services may engage in the first two, but only the CIA is permitted to engage in covert action, and then only with the authorization of a "presidential finding."

Covert action generally falls into two categories: military and political. The CIA is clearly back in the business of military covert action, and its operations have been very successful, but it does not appear to be involved in political covert action any longer, and this is to the detriment of the US government.

Why are we not using this resource? Because political covert action operations are very sensitive and require complete US deniability. And we are not very good at operating in secret any longer. Not since the CIA's "family jewels" - operations that involved assassination attempts against foreign leaders and covert attempts to subvert foreign governments - were gleefully revealed by the Church Committee back in 1975.

Political covert action involves influencing foreign political events in a way that is totally deniable - not attributable to the U.S. government. The overthrow of the anti-American Mohammad Mosaddegh and the reinstatement of the Shah in Iran back in 1953 is a well known example of CIA covert political action that worked. Others also worked but remain classified.

The sticking point to covert action is this: In order to influence political events in a particular country it is necessary to recruit foreign correspondents to write articles favorable to the U.S. position, or for the CIA to plant articles designed to influence public perceptions in the foreign media. The bad word for this is propaganda; it is a very effective tool. [Read more: Rustmann/Newsmax/18November2011]

Post-9/11 Tradeoff: Security vs. Civil Liberties. In the early months after the 9/11 terror attacks, America's visceral reaction was to gird for a relentless, whatever-it-takes quest to punish those responsible and prevent any recurrences.

To a striking extent, those goals have been achieved. Yet over the years, Americans have also learned about trade-offs, about decisions and practices that placed national security on a higher plane than civil liberties and, in the view of some, above the rule of law.

It's by no means the first time in U.S. history that security concerns spawned tactics that, when brought to light, troubled Americans. But the past decade has been notable, even in historical context, for the scope and durability of boundary-pushing practices.

Abroad, there were secret prisons and renditions of terror suspects, the use of waterboarding and other interrogation techniques that critics denounced as torture, and the egregious abuse of detainees by U.S. military personnel at Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison and elsewhere.

At home, there has been widespread warrantless wiretapping authorized by the National Security Agency and the issuance of more than 200,000 national security letters ordering an array of Americans - including business owners and librarians - to turn over confidential records.

Now, in the very city that suffered most on 9/11, new information has emerged about the New York Police Department's intelligence operations - ramped up after the attacks in ways that critics say amount to racial and ethnic profiling, though the department denies that charge. [Read more: Crary/AP/19November2011]

In the Intelligence Community, a Cosmic Shift. Serious change is afoot in the intelligence community. Some of the most opaque federal organizations are doing what might have sounded crazy five years ago: They're moving their classified, sensitive information - some of it, at least - off their own servers and into the cloud. Moreover, they will be sharing that information with one another.

"They" are a powerful group formerly known as the Quad: the Defense Intelligence Agency, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, National Reconnaissance Office and National Security Agency. Now that the CIA has joined the consortium, they are known as the Quint.

Spurred by financial pressure and an increasingly mobile, tech-oriented workforce, the Quint is trying to break out of the "silos of secrecy" so they can find new ways to achieve their missions.

Much of the change in approach was unveiled at the GEOINT 2012 Symposium in San Antonio in October, where there were ubiquitous examples of how the Quint is using IT to become more efficient, save money and eradicate redundancies. Some top officials, including Gen. Keith Alexander, commander of U.S. Cyber Command and director of NSA, and James Clapper, director of national intelligence, shared the progress on the move to the cloud and their ambitious plans for the future.

To appreciate what a shift this is for intelligence agencies, one must understand where they are coming from. [Read more: Corrin/FCW/28November2011]

Should Hacking be Condoned as Espionage? PC users fear it, Mac users tend to be a bit more lax about it, governments build layers of security to protect themselves from it, and Iran's nuclear sites were hit by it. While some may not have caught on to what the "it" is after laying out the groundwork, the "it" to which I am referring is more commonly known as a virus. The "call your friend who knows how to use an anti-virus program and get the little problem off the computer before it finds my awkward family photos and posts them on the WikiLeaks website" issue was recently found on several computers where research is being conducted for the Iranian nuclear development programs.

As the government of Iran is under substantial scrutiny over its forward progress with nuclear technology and the shroud of secrecy that covers it, leaders from across the world have expressed grave concern on the matter. Since the opening of the Bushehr nuclear facility in 2011, the world has been watching closely as Iran continues to move forward with its program to enrich uranium for the purpose of energy. Out of fear of more than just producing energy, Iran's sworn enemy, Israel, has gone so far as to deploy troops in the Persian Gulf to keep an eye on security from multiple fronts.

Iran has clearly not been able to maintain its own cyber-security, however. The Duqu virus named "Son of Stuxnet" (named after another virus that focused on destroying computers) creates another entry point for hackers to networks and networked computers. To put this into more visual terms, picture the virus as a copy of a physical key to a door, and it allows the perpetrator to enter the house at any point under an invisibility cloak of sorts - if you were wondering, yes, that was an allusion to Harry Potter.

This virus was able to get past the firewalls already in place, and penetrate far enough to have reportedly set back the Iranian nuclear program substantially. While such an attack can be perceived as positive news to the U.S. interest in nuclear development in Iran, it presents an interesting question: should such methods of cyber-security breaches be condoned as acts of espionage? [Read more: O'Reilly/SUSpectator/16November2011]

Intelligence Blunder in Beirut? My Atlantic colleague Max Fisher has posted a terrific piece thinking through how America's intelligence operation may have tilted too much towards terrorist killing rather than terror network penetration. 

Fisher builds on the Los Angeles Times' Ken Dilanian's important revelations about the roll up of one of America's legendary spy operation centers. One US source told Dilanian: "Beirut Station is out of business."

The fact that Hezbollah may have tracked informants who met with CIA operatives at a pizza joint after the CIA used the codeword "PIZZA" to signal the place to meet sounds eerily similar to a CIA clerk accidentally issuing a "readable" electronic communication that listed most or all of America's intelligence assets inside Iran. Of course, according to the Pulitzer Prize New York Times writer James Risen who disclosed this CIA mistake in his book State of War, Iran rolled up that network - much like Hezbollah will roll up (i.e., kill) all those who were compromised by this alleged "pizza" spycraft mistake.

The only caveat that I would humbly add to this coverage and to these assessments - both of what Risen reports happened in Iran and the latest revelations about blunders in Beirut - is that intelligence is a very complicated game. [Read more: Clemons/TheAtlantic/21November2011]

Section IV - Obituaries, Books, Research Requests and Coming Events


Iluminada S. Binkley. Iluminada S. Binkley, 76, a cryptanalyst who retired from the National Security Agency in 1991, died Nov. 6 at her home in Reston.

She died of breast cancer that had metastasized to her esophagus, said a niece, Patricia Santiago.

Iluminada Segarra Binkley was born in Guayanilla, Puerto Rico. She moved to the Washington area in 1963 and joined the NSA two years later as a linguistic analyst. She later became a cryptanalyst.

While working at the NSA, she received a bachelor's degree in business administration and personnel management from the University of Maryland in 1980. She was president of the NSA Spanish Club.

Her husband of 34 years, Howard L. Binkley, died in 1975. Survivors include six children, Karina Jenkins of Sterling, Lynn Johnston of Richmond, Shanna Pettie and Andrea Binkley, both of Maui, Hawaii, Michele Tucker of Jacksonville Beach, Fla., and Ronnie Binkley of Chicago; 16 grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren. [Barnes/WashingtonPost/17November2011]

Vitaly Shlykov. Vitaly Shlykov, a former Soviet intelligence agent who spent years in a Swiss prison after being convicted of espionage and later became an internationally known military analyst, has died at 77.

Shlykov died of a heart condition over the weekend at his apartment in Moscow, the Council for Foreign and Defense Policy confirmed Monday. Shlykov was one of the founders of the council, which advises the Kremlin on security issues.

Following his retirement from Soviet military intelligence in 1988, he served from 1990 to 1992 in the government of Russia's first president, Boris Yeltsin, as deputy head of a committee for public security.

In more recent years, Shlykov helped engineer a radical reform of the Russian military to shed its Cold War legacy and turn it into a modern force.

Shlykov joined Soviet military intelligence in 1958 after graduating from Moscow's Institute of International Relations. He served for 30 years in the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Russian General Staff, known under its Russian acronym of GRU.

During his GRU career, he worked as a senior analyst specializing in assessing the military industries of the United States and other Western nations. He made frequent trips to the West on a false American passport.

One of his duties was to maintain contacts with Dieter Felix Gerhardt, a senior officer of the South African Navy who was working as a Soviet spy. In January 1983, Shlykov was arrested on a trip to Zurich while carrying the equivalent of about $100,000 in cash to hand over to Gerhardt's wife, who was supposed to serve as a liaison.

Soviet intelligence was unaware that Gerhardt and his wife had been arrested a few weeks earlier and had told interrogators about the meeting in Switzerland.

Realizing after the arrest that his cover had been blown, Shlykov claimed he was a Soviet citizen who had emigrated to the West - another false identity he was supposed to offer in just such a case.

He never revealed his true identity to the Swiss police, and in 1984 was convicted of espionage and sentenced to three years in prison. He was released early for good behavior and returned to the Soviet Union in 1986.

After his retirement two years later, he became a prominent scholar specializing in military policy and wrote extensively on security issues.

Shlykov strongly backed the Kremlin's military reform, intended to radically cut the bloated and inefficient Russian military and turn it into a more modern and agile force. His support contrasted sharply with that of many other military veterans, who insisted the reforms were destroying the military.

In a 2010 interview with The Associated Press, Shlykov described the effort as "the most radical reform of the Russian military in 150 years" and said it should make the armed forces more capable.

Shlykov first spoke to the media about his espionage experience two decades after quitting the service.

"During my life span, I have lived several lives, full of tension and excitement," he said in a 2006 interview with Radio Liberty.

He is to be buried Tuesday at Troyekurovsky Cemetery. [Read more: AP/21November2011]

Books and Documentaries

Mackenzie Memoirs Banned for Spilling Spy Secrets to be Republished by the British; but already had been Republished in U.S. in 1987. The Guardian is claiming, incorrectly, that the first world war memoirs of Sir Compton Mackenzie are to see the light of day 78 years after they were banned after the intervention of MI6 and MI5. The claim is untrue. The late CIA officer/historian Thomas TROY published an unexpurgated edition of Compton Mackenzie's Greek Memories in 1987 when he was with University Publications of America, and he highlighted the passages censored by the British government.

Despite this British hype that it only counts when "they" publish an unexpurgated version, the article does provide some history on the Greek Memories brouhaha. In 1932 the author of more than 90 books, including Whisky Galore, was prosecuted under the Official Secrets Act for revealing information about Britain's intelligence service in Greek Memories. Mackenzie was charged with identifying wartime intelligence officers and revealing that passport control and visa sections of UK embassies were often used as cover for the secret service. He also disclosed the existence of a department of the Secret Intelligence Service, now known as MI6 but then known as section "M.I.i.c" of the War Office.

Worst, to the British, was that Mackenzie revealed that the first head of MI6, the one-legged Captain Sir Mansfield Cumming, was referred to as "C." It is a moniker that his successors, including the incumbent, Sir John Sawers, continue to use. They sign their telegrams and correspondence, sent to the Queen as well as the foreign secretary, "C" in green ink.

The British unexpurgated version of Greek Memories, clearly with much ballyhoo, will be published next week by Biteback Books. The US unexpurgated 1987 version can be found online in out-of-print book dealers. Both are probably worth owning for discerning collectors. [Read more: Norton-Taylor/Guardian/18November2011]

'Garbo The Spy': A Nazi Double Agent, Mystery Intact. The story of World War II spy Juan Pujol Garcia, known to his British handlers as "Garbo," is certainly worth telling. And director Edmon Roch's Garbo the Spy employs clever workarounds for the (necessarily) scant visual evidence of its subject's clandestine career. But it'll help to know something of the tale before the movie begins: This is one of those documentaries that spend as much time mystifying as illuminating.

Heavy on clips from newsreels, propaganda films and Hollywood spy and war dramas, Garbo the Spy introduces Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower, the actor Leslie Howard - who has a piquant but tangential role - and the 1944 D-Day invasion before getting around to Garcia.

The connecting thread is that Garcia, a Barcelona native, was part of the Allies' campaign to convince the German high command that the June 6, 1944, assault was just a diversion. The elaborate lie worked so well that the Germans were still preparing for another invasion two weeks after the Allies took the Normandy coast.

Garcia, who worked both sides of the Spanish Civil War, did the same in World War II. He approached the British about becoming an intelligence agent, and was rebuffed. So he went to the Germans, who were more enthusiastic. Living at first in Madrid and then near Lisbon, Garcia pretended to be in Britain. He supplied the Germans with information that was either phony or taken from public sources. He also claimed to supervise 27 subagents, who were as fictitious as his U.K. address.

Eventually, the British accepted Garcia as a disinformation agent and made one of his claims truthful by relocating him to London. His bogus reports to Berlin helped U.K. intelligence break German codes and were part of "Operation Fortitude," which persuaded the Germans to concentrate their defenses on two spots the Allies had no intention of invading: Calais and the Norwegian coast.

The Germans, it seems, never suspected Garcia, who became the only person to receive both an Iron Cross and an Order of the British Empire for his World War II service. His deceptions inspired Graham Greene's novel Our Man In Havana, the movie of which is one of many excerpted here. [Read more: Jenkins/NPR/17November2011]

Research Requests

German spy activity in the US before WWII. I am searching for someone who has an interest in German spy activity in the US before WWII. In particular, I will like to learn if there was activity in and around the following areas: New Orleans, Missississippi River ports and Memphis.

If you happen to know of any person in your organization with these interests, would you let me know. Thank you very much.

Neilson Buchanan
155 Bryant Street
Palo Alto, CA 94301
650 329-0484
650 537-9611 cell

Paid Volunteer Opportunity: Global Events Forecasting Research. Part-Time Forecasters for Research on Predicting Global Events. Seeking participants for a unique online, federally-funded, paid research effort directed at improving current forecasting methods.

The success of this project is largely dependent upon the 1,000+ individuals that will comprise our participant pool. Our ideal participant is an individual who is interested in and well informed about current events pertaining to one or more of the following topics: politics, science & technology, economics, the environment, and the military.

If you would like to learn more information about this effort, please visit our study's website (, or review our official news release (

Invitation To Participate:
The System for Prediction, Aggregation, Display, and Elicitation (SP♠DE) team would like to invite you to participate in an interactive, online research study aimed at exploring the field of forecasting. This is a federally funded research effort sponsored by the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA) to learn how judgments made by a widely dispersed and diverse group of individuals may be used to increase forecast accuracies. Your participation will include providing forecasts to questions relating to economic, political, cultural, and global security domains via an interactive website. Your predictions to these questions may be based on your individual knowledge or based on available information provided to you by other research participants.

Eligibility Information
U.S. citizens 18 years of age or older with expertise in specific subject matter may be eligible to participate. Additionally, individuals with diverse educational levels (e.g., bachelor's degrees to Ph.D.s) across a range of disciplines are preferred.

Additional Study Details
Study Duration: The research study commenced in the summer of 2011 and is expected to conclude in 2014. Although we encourage you to participate in the study as long as possible, we understand that some individuals will not be available to do so for the entire three year length of the program. In such instances, please know that you may withdraw at any time.

Participant Involvement: Since data collection for this effort is in the format of an online survey, you will have the flexibility of offering your forecasts around your schedule. We encourage you to stay active with the study's website throughout your involvement with the study.

Economic Considerations: In addition to providing the field of forecasting invaluable data, you will be financially compensated for your involvement with the study. You will be paid $575 for responding to approximately 100 forecast problem sets listed on the study's website over the course of one year. Responding to forecast problem sets includes original responses to a forecast problem, updates to the forecast problem over time, and additional input in regards to specific forecast problems.

Additionally, you will be further compensated $575 for each additional year that you provide forecasts to approximately 100 forecast problem sets for up to three years of participation.

If you decide to withdraw from the study prior to the study's first year of completion, you will be compensated in accordance with how long you have been active in the study up until that point.

Staff Support: Although you will have a great deal of freedom in regards to your study participation (e.g., when/how often you visit the website, how long you wish to participate, etc.), support from the research staff is never more than a phone call or email away. Our dedicated support staff is readily available to answer any questions/concerns that you may have, arrange payments, and ensure that your participation in this research effort is a positive experience.

Even More Study Details
To register as a participant or just to learn more about this unique research opportunity, please visit the SP♠DE website ( Once you have registered, you will be contacted by a member of the research staff to determine your eligibility and obtain some preliminary information about you.

Finally, participation in similar, online forecasting research studies sponsored by IARPA is prohibited while you are involved with the SP♠DE program.

Thank you in advance for your interest and consideration.

Coming Educational Events


MANY Spy Museum Events in November, December, and beyond, with full details are listed on the AFIO Website at The titles for some of these are in detail below and online.

30 November - 1 December 2011 - Fairfax, VA - NMIA Fall 2011 National Intelligence Symposium

The theme of this event is: "Intelligence / Information For Small Unit Operations". Small units have been and may increasingly be the foremost U.S. National Security direct action tool. Taking down high-profile terrorists, conducting counterinsurgency engagements, SWAT Team deployments, first responders and fighting fires - - small units have unique and dynamic intelligence / information needs. Yet while they are at the pointy-end of the spear; they are also at the end of the last mile. What do they need? Are they getting it? How can it be improved? The NMIA Symposium features an array of distinguished experts; let by the invited Keynote, LTG Michael Flynn, US Army; who recently led U.S. intelligence efforts in Afghanistan. Location: Northrup Grumman, Fairfax, Virginia
Register at

1-2 December 2011 - Washington, DC - 21st Annual Review of the Field of National Security Law
Event is co-sponsored by the ABA Standing Committee on Law and National Security, the Center for National Security Law, Univ of VA Sch of Law; Center on Law, Ethics, and National Security, Duke Univ Sch of Law; and the Center on National Security and the Law, Georgetown Law.
Location: Ritz Carlton Hotel, 1150 22nd St NW, Washington DC.
NOTE: You must reserve your room by November 18 to receive the special ABA Conference Rate of $269 Single/Double/or
prevailing Government Rate. Please be advised that after November 18, hotel rates go up significantly. Contact the Hotel
directly by calling 202/974-5570 or 1-800/558-9994 and mention the "ABA Standing Committee on Law and National Security
21st Annual Review of the Field of National Security."

Wednesday, 7 December 2011, 6 pm - Las Vegas, NV - Las Vegas Chapter Holiday and Award Dinner

The Roger E. McCarthy Las Vegas Chapter will present Colonel Sully de Fontaine, US Army (Ret), a highly decorated veteran of World War II, the Korean Conflict and the Vietnam War. He also served in the African conflicts of the early 1960's. Colonel de Fontaine will recount how he was trained by the British Special Operations Executive and the Special Air Service in 1943 and 1944 (commando and aireborne schools); and the clandestine assignments which parachuted him into Occupied France (twice) to escort downed aircrews to safety. For his work, de Fontaine was awarded the Croix de Guerre with Palm (France and Belgium).

Colonel de Fontaine is a member of AFIO's Roger E. McCarthy Las Vegas Chapter, the OSS Society, and other distinguished organizations.

This meeting is also our holiday dinner. If you are planning to attend, please provide your name and birth date to me, Mary Bentley, Corresponding Secretary, 702-295-1024, or by email at as soon as possible. The dinner/meeting charge per person is $20.00.

Thursday, 8 December 2011, 10:30 am - 2 pm - Tysons Corner, VA - AFIO Winter Luncheon - Speaker: John D. Bennett, Director, National Clandestine Service, CIA and J.M. Berger, author of JIHAD JOE: Americans Who Go To War In The Name of Islam

Speaker: John D. Bennett, Director, National Clandestine Service, CIA, OFF THE RECORD, and morning speaker J.M. Berger, author of JIHAD JOE: Americans Who Go To War In The Name of Islam. Location: Crowne Plaza, Tysons Corner, VA Register here.

8 December 2011, 6 - 9 pm - New York, NY - The AFIO NY Metro Chapter meeting features Jim Rasenberger on "The Brilliant Disaster: JFK, Castro, and America's Doomed Invasion of Cuba's Bay of Pigs"

Jim Rasenberger, Author: The Brilliant Disaster: JFK, Ccastro and America's Doomed Invasion of Cuba's Bay of Pigs, April 17, 1961 "How could we have been so stupid" remarked one administration official. Did this "doomed invasion" contribute to the Cuban Missile Crisis, the Vietnam War and the assassination of President Kennedy? LOCATION: "3 West Club" 3 West 51st Street, Manhattan.
6:00 PM Registration 6:30 PM Meeting Start Please Note this Time Change from our usual start. Buffet Dinner Cash Bar COST: $40/person. Cash or Check, payable at the door only.
REGISTER: Strongly suggested, not required. Seating is limited.
Email: or telephone Jerry Goodwin 347-334-1503.

Tuesday, 13 December 2011 - MacDill AFB, FL - The AFIO Florida Suncoast Chapter luncheon features Karla Stevenson on Afghanistan-Pakistan.

Stevenson is Coordinator, Analytic Outreach & Strategic Relationships Afghanistan-Pakistan Center, U.S. Central Command
Location: MacDill AFB Surf's Edge Club, 7315 Bayshore Blvd, MacDill AFB, FL 33621. Please RSVP no later than Tuesday, December 6, for
yourself and include the names of any guests. Email or call the Chapter Secretary at Michael F. Shapiro

Wednesday, 11 January 2012, 6:30–8:30 pm - Washington, DC 2011 Espionage Debrief: Year in Review at the International Spy Museum

How did 2011 measure up intel-wise? What was 2011 like for intelligence agencies and operatives around the world? Which service was penetrated? Who was caught? Which covert action operations flew under the media's radar? David Major knows. As a retired Supervisory Special Agent and Director of Counterintelligence, Intelligence and Security Programs for the FBI and Spy Museum Board Member, he understands the cases and knows their implications. As the founder of the CI Centre which provides counterintelligence and security studies and training, Major tracks the most important spy cases from around the globe and has the most up-to-date information on their status. Learn about defector on defector violence in North Korea and discover the critical information that was sought by Libya's intelligence mastermind, Abdullah Senussi. You'll learn the hottest targets and who's been attacked by cyberespionage and why. Major will also include key economic espionage cases and their outcome in this essential international update. Tickets: $15 Visit to register or more information

Thursday, 12 January 2012, Noon-1 pm – Washington, DC - SMERSH: Stalin's Secret Weapon: Soviet Military Counterintelligence in WWII at the International Spy Museum

In the early James Bond novels, the hero battled the villainous forces of SMERSH, a shadowy Soviet intelligence organization. While Bond was fictional, SMERSH really existed. Drawing its name from the Russian phrase smert shpionam or "death to spies," it was Stalin's wartime terror apparatus—a collection of torturers and killers unleashed with brutal effect in 1943 to cut a bloody swath across Eastern Europe. Its job was to "filter" the Red Army for spies and, as a result, it was responsible for the arrest, torture, and execution of many thousands of innocent servicemen and citizens of countries occupied by the Red Army. Join historian and human rights activist Vadim J. Birstein as he discusses this ruthless organization and reveals new evidence suggesting that Raoul Wallenberg was one of its victims.
Free! No Registration Required! Visit for more information

Thursday, 19 January 2012, 6:30–8:30 pm - Washington, DC – Vienna, City of My Dreams: An Evening with Oleg Kalugin at the International Spy Museum

"More than a century of spying history makes this romantic city a place where…agents and informants still feel at ease."—Sigrun Rottman, BBC News, July 8, 2010
Vienna is famous for waltzing, coffee houses, pastries, and the Prater, but for Spy Museum Board Member Oleg Kalugin, the city is all about intrigue. Kalugin, the youngest Major General in KGB history, operated clandestinely in the Austrian capital throughout the 1970s and 1980s, where he developed a passion for the history of this city of spies. From Alfred Redl, the chief of Austrian-Hungarian Intelligence, who was recruited by the Russian Imperial Secret Service in 1907, to Norwegian diplomat Arne Treholt's KGB meetings caught on film in the 80s, Vienna has served as a legendary setting for espionage. Join General Kalugin for this evocative evening of music, film, history, and his own personal experiences as a spy in this elegant European crossroads. While guests enjoy Austrian delicacies, he'll address unanswered questions such as whether one-time Viennese resident Felix Bloch was truly a spy. Come celebrate Vienna's glorious ball season and the confidential information that can be exchanged…in the course of a waltz.
Tickets: $20 Visit to register or more information

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

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