by Steve Lancaster 8/2/16
The Russians hacked the DNC, they hacked HRCs server hidden in a closet, they did this, they did that. Last night I decided to talk to my old boss, James J. Angleton about what the Soviets err Russians are up to.
It has been years since I called down the master spook of the 20th century, but I still know how. A fedora, pulled low over the eyes, trench coat, and a pack of Chesterfields, unfiltered. Five dollars a pack! I waited until 04:00 went outside by a dark corner of the house and lit my first cigarette in over 40 years and waited. The bells on the tower at the University tolled 4, then the 04:30 toll an average man walks down the street.
He seems to move from shadow to shadow and if I had not recognized the walk, the trench coat and fedora was a, pardon the pun, dead giveaway. He walks up to me and asks for a cigarette. I light it for him, he smokes deeply inhaling and not seemingly exhaling. “Damn that’s good”, he says.
I say,” Boss it has been a long time, and I need your advice”.
He says, “You were always one of my favorite agents, I can give you a few thoughts. What do you need to know?”
Over the last several months there have been a number of allegations that the Russians have been and possibly still are reading the e-mail of political parties, ex government officials and even the White House. How would you explain what they are doing?
He thought for a while, although not as long as you might expect. “Of course the Soviets/Russians have the ability to do this. They might even garner some good intel. After all we read every scrap of mail going to the USSR for over 20 years without them knowing it and if it had not been for Colby giving up the program to the Church Committee it could still be running.” However, he said, “why should the Russians actually do this?”
He was quiet for a moment and then went into lecture mode; “The Russian target does not have the resources we have and never will, but they have one advantage that makes them formidable. That is the ability through disinformation and misinformation to shape the battlefield and opponents into believing them capable of anything. Perhaps, this guy at WikiLeaks knows who hacked and who didn’t but it serves the Russian purpose to make American intelligence believe that is what happened”.
It is just like the 70s at CIA, he continued. “I was certain that we had several Soviet moles and others from friendly countries working at Langley. It made sense to me, and I have seen what moles could do to an intelligence agency close up, I considered KIM PHILBY A friend.”
So how is that like today?
In the 70s and into the 80s we spent millions of dollars, and thousands of man-hours chasing moles in the intelligence community, CIA, FBI, NSA, DIA and the rest of the alphabet and even found a few, Ames and Pollard are just two examples. But, the effort confused our purpose. At one-time CI, (counter intelligence) was directed at things the enemy could actually do, but by misdirecting our efforts to finding out who was a mole and who wasn’t our advantages in resources was nullified. I think that is what is happening now, Czar Vlad has us chasing our tails. Looking for spies under every rock.
How do we fix this I asked? But the sun was coming up and he was fading with illumination as specters are inclined to do. All he said was, “good luck”, and he was gone.