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With COVID-19 dominating headlines - from infection rates to border closures to economic fallout and bailout - important stories that would have once been front-page news have been pushed to the bottom half of A6. Here is a roundup of some significant global developments you may have missed this week:
Read the full report and learn more about The Arkin Group's unique services here.
World Health Organization list of pandemics and viruses. Almost all came from China.
You would think these pandemics would cause them to institute better sanitary conditions for animals, and implement tighter food safety. Not so. Instead they hide emerging diseases, obfuscate, then release false numbers, and later concoct propaganda to blame the diseases on other countries, while their markets continue selling rodents, bats, snakes, and other wildlife. And snooker certain figures in the U.S. press to attack those who point out the Coronavirus is a "Chinese virus" — one that originated in Wuhan, China. As did the majority of viruses which turned into pandemics in the past half century.
Newly Released and Forthcoming Books of the Week
"In this age of widespread pessimism about the future of democracy, this book makes a powerful argument: democracy is not only better for the people, but may have the edge against autocracies in the coming great power rivalry. It is an erudite, well-argued and uplifting book." — Daron Acemoglu, Institute Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
The US has been the most powerful country in the world for over seventy years, but recently the U.S. National Security Strategy declared that the return of great power competition with Russia and China is the greatest threat to U.S. national security. Many analysts predict that America's autocratic rivals will have at least some success in disrupting—and, in the longer term, possibly even displacing—U.S. global leadership.
A vitally important book for anyone concerned about the future of global geopolitics, The Return of Great Power Rivalry provides both an innovative way of thinking about power in international politics and an optimistic assessment of the future of American global leadership.
Book may be ordered here.
From the French and Indian War of the mid-1700s to the War on Terrorism in the 21st century, Sieg details the costliest and most tragic intelligence mistakes in American history.
Provides expert assessments of intelligence missteps by Sieg, an academic historian who is also a trained and experienced intelligence collector and analyst with the U.S. Air Force.
Provides reflections on how intelligence mistakes might be avoided in the future.
Book may be ordered here.
Coronavirus Confinement Challenges Intelligence Services. The home confinement of hundreds of millions of people worldwide to halt coronavirus contagion has presented intelligence services with a challenge: monitoring an explosion in internet traffic, above board and not, even as their own capacity is reduced.
The global health crisis has exposed the internet as both a tool and a potential target for malefactors, experts say, with agents - many themselves working from home - having to sift through the deluge looking for credible threats.
Criminals could take advantage of the disarray to launch attacks on government and nuclear systems, alter scientific or electoral data, paralyse servers, or spread fake news.
Developing countries and those with weak monitoring systems are most at risk, with Western nations better geared to pick up external cyber threats. [Read more: Lauras/IBT/23March2020]
Intelligence Community Wrestles with a Security Threat: Coronavirus Hardship. As government work slows and non-essential workers are sent home to prevent the spread of COVID-19, money is getting tighter - and many in the national security community are wondering whether their security clearances could be on the line as a result.
The U.S. national security apparatus has played a key role in the coronavirus response, monitoring how the disease has affected closed societies like China, Iran, and North Korea while working to prevent the virus from spreading inside the nation's intelligence and defense agencies themselves.
But the disruption of normal government operations as agencies implement "social distancing" policies could leave federal contractors and their employees without a paycheck, potentially jeopardizing their ability to hold or maintain a security clearance if they start to miss payments and incur debt. Clearance holders or applicants who have debt are considered more vulnerable to bribery or coercion, and financial irresponsibility is generally considered to be indicative of irresponsibility in other areas. [Read more: Bertrand/Politico/23March2020]
DOD to Extend Maximum Telework to Contractors. The Defense Department wants contractors to maximize telework opportunities in the midst of the coronavirus outbreak.
Kim Herrington, the acting director for Defense Pricing and Contracting in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, issued a memo March 20 instructing defense companies to "consider unprecedented flexibilities" during the COVID-19 pandemic and allow workers to do their jobs remotely "without mission degradation."
"We are asking that the same maximum telework flexibilities extended to DOD service members and civilians also be made available to contractors when contract services can be delivered, without mission degradation, while off-site," Herrington wrote. [Read more: Williams/FCW/24March2020]
Grenell Appoints Two Women to Top Intel Jobs. Richard Grenell, the acting Director of National Intelligence, has appointed two top female intelligence executives to coordinate America's counter-terror operations.
Grenell named Lora Shiao as acting director of the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC), and she will become the agency's deputy director, pending Senate confirmation. Shiao previously served as the NCTC's executive director. She will be the first woman to run the NCTC.
Clare Linkins, formerly the director of strategic operational planning for NCTC, will move into Shiao's previous job as the NCTC's new executive director.
Amanda Schoch, the assistant director of national intelligence for strategic communications, remarked in a statement that Grenell is "excited and proud" to announce the promotions of Shiao and Linkins. [Read more: Patten/Newsmax/23March2020]
Election 2020: Iran-Contra Spy Wins Florida Beach Town Mayor's Race. A pardoned Iran-Contra American spy won his bid for mayor of tiny Palm Beach Shores, an unneighborly clash between neighbors resulted in likely defeat for a Lantana Councilman and the first contested election in 11 years in Jupiter Inlet Colony saw an incumbent in danger of losing his seat.
In Palm Beach Shores, Alan Fiers ousted Mayor Myra Koutzen with backing from about 55 percent of voters, Tuesday's results showed.
Fiers' bloc for town commission - former Mayor Tom Mills and former Commissioner Scott "Surf Doc" McCranels - led by slim margins over challenger Tracy Larcher and Commissioners Gil Gilgallon and Brian Tyler.
Fiers, who headed the CIA's Central American Task Force during the Iran-Contra arms-for-hostages scandal, worked with the man at the center of the scandal, Lt. Col. Oliver North. In 1991, Fiers became the first former CIA official to admit knowledge of the scheme. He was among 14 people convicted and six pardoned. [Read more: Persaud/PBPost/17March2020]
Spies Working From Home: How Coronavirus Is Impacting U.S. Intelligence Networks Across the World. In a foreign capital recently, an American spy was facing an unexpected dilemma: how to cancel a clandestine first meeting with a promising new recruit? People were not leaving their homes, so the usually crowded shops, bars, buses, parks, and restaurants were empty, and there was no longer a place to meet without arousing suspicion.
While the coronavirus is exacting a far larger toll on people around the world who are losing income, jobs and even their lives to the pandemic, it also poses an unprecedented problem for intelligence case officers stationed around the world whose job it is to meet the agents they're recruiting or running without being noticed or risking their own, their contacts', and their contacts' families' liberty and lives. The pandemic has slowed the pace of America's adversaries' spy networks, as well, as they too have turned their attention to combating the virus, U.S. officials say.
"It's hard enough to maintain your cover in a crowded city," said a U.S. intelligence officer, who spoke on condition of anonymity. With an increasing number of cities on lockdown, "it's even harder to avoid attracting attention on an empty street," the officer said. "And you can't just pick up the phone or send a text." [Read more: Walcott/TIME/19March2020]
A Spy and a Democracy Pedlar: The Complicated Truths in the Life of Australian Citizen Yang Hengjun. In the photo from 1992, Yang Hengjun's mouth is tilted into a barely-there hint of a smile, which hangs below smiling eyes and a serious pair of spectacles.
He was supposedly working for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the southern province of Hainan, and the photo shows him wearing a boxy moss green police-style uniform.
There's just one small issue: The Ministry of Foreign Affairs doesn't have a uniform and the clothes Yang is wearing, according to a Beijing-based security analyst, belong to China's most powerful and feared spy agency, the Ministry of State Security (MSS).
"The MSS is a sprawling security intelligence service with wide ranging powers," said Clive Hamilton, co-author of an upcoming book about global Chinese influence operations, Hidden Hand. [Read more: ABCNews/22March2020]
Defense Intelligence Agency Museum. The Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) Museum tells the story of the agency's nearly 60 years of rooting out the world's military secrets.
The DIA is one of the country's "big five" intelligence services and acts as a combat support agency. It's focused mission is made clear at the entrance of the museum, which one reaches after walking past an enormous red mural of major historical events in a giant foyer.
Alongside notorious, and celebrated espionage relics are narrations about the villains and heroes in the annals of military history. Prominent among the displays is the story of DIA analyst Ana Belen Montes, who spied for Cuba from 1985 to 2001 and the rescue of Jessica Lynch. [Read more: AtlasObscura/24March2020]
How the CIA's Predecessor Helped the Allies Crush Hitler and the Nazi. In utter silence, the saboteurs carefully wired their target for demolition. All knew even the slightest noise might alert sentries to their presence underneath the Occoquan Creek bridge in northern Virginia. Finally, with explosives and detonators in place, the team of infiltrators made their escape undetected by patrolling watchmen.
During World War II, thousands of would-be secret agents roamed rural Maryland and Virginia while learning the "ungentlemanly arts" of espionage, covert action, and irregular warfare. These operatives in training belonged to the U.S. Office of Strategic Services (OSS), the first national-level intelligence organization. Soon they would put their skill and nerve to the ultimate test - as clandestine warriors fighting far behind enemy lines.
On July 11, 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt took a momentous step toward centralizing America's intelligence-gathering efforts when he authorized the office of the Coordinator of Information (COI). In doing so, FDR hoped to create a single agency responsible for sorting and analyzing reports collected by more than a dozen U.S. diplomatic, law enforcement, and military establishments. Chosen to head the COI was prominent Wall Street attorney Colonel William J. Donovan. [Read more: WarfareHistoryNetwork/19March2020]
Putin's Secret Intelligence Agency
Hacked: Dangerous New ‘Cyber Weapons' Now Exposed. Red
faces in Red Square, again. Last July, I reported on the hacking of
SyTech, an FSB (Federal Security Service) contractor working on
internet surveillance tech. Now, reports have emerged from Russia of
another shocking security breach within the FSB ecosystem. This one
has exposed "a new weapon ordered by the security service," one that
can execute cyber attacks on the Internet of Things (IoT) - the
millions of connected devices now in our homes and offices.
Given the Intelligence Community's clear assessment of the threat
from pandemics over a year ago, serious questions naturally follow:
What additional policies and measures could have been put into place
to prepare for the potential for "massive rates of death and
disability," or how it would "severely affect the world economy?" And do the small numbers (so far) of deaths from coronavirus (compared with seasonal annual flu which kills 700,000 worldwide without all the ballyhoo) override the warnings from the IC?
[Read more: Climate&Security/18March2020]
If you know outstanding teachers in the field of intelligence, please nominate them as explained below, before the 1 April 2020 deadline.
The IAFIE (International Association for Intelligence Education)
recognizes individuals who have excelled in intelligence
instruction, which includes both academic and professional
Nat Alderman, US Army Intelligence, Army Security Agency (NSA)
Pam Balow (Tovar), former CIA Chief of Station
E3/Sentinel has a funded opening for an IT Acquisitions Subject Matter Expert with specific experience in IT architecture requirements to support an IC customer. Candidate will assist in developing innovative business strategies and procurement policy/processes. Only candidates with TS/SCI clearances will be considered. Contact Rosanna Minchew email@example.com for more details.
E3/Sentinel has multiple openings for Contracts Specialists, Acquisition Analysts, Cost/Pricing Analysts and Contracts Closeout Specialists. Positions in Reston and at Bolling AFB. TS/SCI required to be considered for interview. Polygraph preferred. Contact Rosanna Minchew firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
instructors at the University of Texas at El Paso (US)
James Madison University (JMU) located in Harrisonburg, VA, seeks
applicants for two faculty positions in its Bachelor's Degree
Program in Intelligence Analysis (IA). The appointments will be at
the Assistant or Associate Professor level and will reside within
the larger School of Integrated Sciences. The IA program offers a
multidisciplinary undergraduate degree with an emphasis on
methodology and technology to prepare students to become analysts,
with a specialization in intelligence analysis. Its graduates have
been successful in securing positions as analysts in both the
public and private sectors, to include the Intelligence Community,
military and law enforcement organizations, defense contractors,
and major consulting firms. The program emphasizes methodology and
synthesizes critical and creative thinking methods with
technological tools for data collection, visualization, and
analysis with situational knowledge of a problem's political,
economic, social, and technological context with strong
communicative and professional skills to support decision-making.
More information or applications may be found here.
Available with Thomson Reuters
Many other jobs available with Thomson-Reuter. Email Brian Lemley for a list with descriptions and links.
Explore the many career and contractor intelligence jobs available here. Jobs openings in Cyber Security include - Advisory, Architecture, Digital Forensics & Incident Response, Penetration Testing, Threat Research. They positions are needed here: New York, Chicago, Manila, Reston, Dallas, Atlanta, Suitland, Singapore, Denver, Las Vegas, Phoenix, Doha, Stockholm, London, Milpitas, multiple cities in Australia, Washington, Indianapolis, Tampa, Santiago, Alexandria, Seattle, Carlsbad, Houston, San Francisco, Arlington, Dubai, Amsterdam, Ft Belvoir, Minneapolis, Mexico City, San Diego, Boston, El Segundo, Philadelphia, San Antonio, Chiyoda, Ft Huachuca, Ft Gordon, Ft Meade, Ft Shafter, Kuwait City, Seoul, Sttutgart, Salt Lake City, Austin, Dublin, Bangalore, Cork, Colorado Springs... Explore the many career and contractor intelligence jobs available here.
CANCELLED for Public Safety from Coronavirus - Saturday, 9 May 2020 -- Indialantic, FL - Florida Satellite Chapter hears Col Prince on the Qu'ran
The speaker will be AFIO Florida Satellite Chapter member Col. Bill Prince, USA (ret.) After graduating from West Point, Bill served in Vietnam with both Ranger and Special Forces units. He resigned his regular army commission to accept a position as a CIA case officer, with subsequent experiences in numerous hostile environments. He has a graduate degree from Harvard, where his studies focused on the Middle East. The topic of his address will be the Qur'an, a subject he has studied extensively.
Please note that attendance at Florida Satellite Chapter meetings is always well within current CDC guidelines against gatherings of fifty or more.
Timing: 11:30 AM - 12:15 PM: Social Hour, greet old, new members and guests. Cash bar. 12:15 PM: Sit Down lunch
TO ATTEND: Prepaid reservations are required which must be received by 2 May 2020.
Florida Satellite Chapter meets at the Doubletree Melbourne Beach
Oceanfront, 1665 N. Highway A1A, Indialantic, FL 32903.
RESCHEDULED from Spring: Friday, 23 October 2020, 10:30 a.m. - 2 p.m. - Tysons, VA - AFIO National Fall Luncheon features Washington Post columnist David Ignatius, and Author, former Post reporter Stephen Vogel
HOLD THE DATE: The morning speaker will be David Ignatius, author of the upcoming intelligence novel, The Paladin: A Spy Novel [WW Norton, May 2020]. Ignatius is a Washington Post columnist and has been covering the Middle East and CIA for nearly three decades.
CANCELLED for Public Safety from Coronavirus - 25-28 March 2020 - Honolulu, HI - International Studies Association (ISA) conference Intelligence Studies Section (ISA/ISS) Panels at ISA2020
Various links below provide a view of the extensive program of
the Intelligence Studies Section being held as part of
ISA2020...the International Studies Association (ISA) conference
in Honolulu, Hawaii on 25-28 March. The Intelligence Studies
Section is one of thirty thematic sections that make up the ISA,
has approximately 400 members, and has been sponsoring research
about intelligence as a function of government since the
mid-1980s. This Intelligence Studies Section content (4 straight
days, 30 panels and roundtables) is one (highly impressive) small
part of ISA's much larger conference.
CANCELLED for Public Safety from Coronavirus - Wednesday, 25 March 2020, 1:30 - 2:30pm - Annapolis Junction, MD - National Cryptologic Museum Lecture Series: Women in Cryptology
In the world of codes and ciphers, women have always played a role. Throughout American history, women have provided vital information to military leaders, done the daily grind searching for the enemy's secrets, and pioneered new scientific fields. Learn about the contributions and talents these women have brought to cryptology.
This lecture is free, but registration is required. Register via
EventBrite - see link below.
CANCELLED for Public Safety from Coronavirus - 26-29 April 2020 - Tampa, FL - USGIF GEOINT 2020 Symposium
US Geospatial-Intelligence Foundation's GEOINT 2020 Symposium
has the theme, "New Decade, New Challenges, New Strategies."
17 June 2020, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. - Annapolis Junction, MD - The NCMF Summer Cryptologic Program features Seth Jones on "Covert Action."
CANCELLED for Public Safety from Coronavirus - 25 - 27 June 2020 - Pordenone, Italy - IAFIE 2020 Annual Conference - Intelligence Education, Research and Practice in the 2020s
The 2020 Annual Conference of the International Association for Intelligence Education (IAFIE) will be held in Pordenone, Italy from June 25 to 27. This year IAFIE and IAFIE EC are joining hands in organising a joint annual conference examining the intelligence requirements for the next decade 2020- 2030, with its changing threat environment and fast developing technological advancements. The conference papers will reach out to other cognate disciplines for a multidisciplinary approach and brings scholars and practitioners together for a blend of research and applied discussions on intelligence. This will be the 5th Annual Conference of IAFIE EC. The topics/themes for the conference are Intelligence Analysis, Intelligence Domains, Management of Intelligence Community, and Intelligence Education and Research. Authors of recent books, monographs and reports in line with these topics/themes are also invited to submit proposals to participate in Author Roundtables. Please email your general enquiries to email@example.com. More information here. CANCELLED for Public Safety from Coronavirus
PUT ON CALENDAR AND HOLD THE DATE: The Pentagon Federal (PenFed
Credit Union) Foundation will be hosting their spectacular Night
of Heroes Gala on Saturday, 24 October 2020 at the Mandarin
Oriental in Washington, D.C. Last year's annual gala raised over
$1.5 million and honored children of military families.
In addition to the new Royal Blue long sleeve shirts, and the gray long sleeve hooded sweatshirts, the AFIO Store also has the following items ready for quick shipment:
NEW: LONG and Short-Sleeved Shirts with embroidered AFIO Logo and New Mugs with color-glazed permanent logo
your support for AFIO with our new Polo Shirts. Be the first to
buy these new, high quality, subtle heathered grey short
sleeve shirts, and dark blue long sleeved shirts, of
shrink and wrinkle resistant fine cotton with a soft yet
substantial feel. They feature a detailed embroidered AFIO seal.
Get a shirt for yourself and consider as gifts for colleagues,
family, and friends. Only $45 each including shipping.
Show your support for AFIO with our new long-sleeved Polo Shirts and Hooded Sweatshirts.
Both items are high quality and shrink resistant and feature a detailed embroidered AFIO seal. The color of the long-sleeved Polo Shirts is royal blue; the price is $55 and includes shipping.
The Hooded Sweatshirts are dark grey; the price is $70 and includes shipping.
Purchase a shirt and sweatshirt for yourself and consider as
gifts for colleagues, family, and friends.
NEW: Mug with color glazed logo. Made in America. (We left out all that lead-based glaze and hidden toxins in those mugs made in China being sold by other organizations). Also sturdy enough to sit on desk to hold pens, cards, paperclips, and candy.
This handsome large, heavy USA-made ceramic mug is dishwasher-safe with a glazed seal. $35 per mug includes shipping. Order this and other store items online here.
These 2017 mousepads have full color seals of all 18 members of the US Intelligence Community on this 8" round, slick surface, nonskid, rubber-backed mouse pad with a darker navy background, brighter, updated seals. Also used, by some, as swanky coasters. Price still only $20.00 for 2 pads [includes shipping to US address. Foreign shipments - we will contact you with quote.] Order MOUSEPADS here.
Guide to the Study of Intelligence and When Intelligence Made a Difference
"AFIO's Guide to the Study of Intelligence" has
sold out in hard-copy.
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