Protecting the Identities of Covert Agents .. “a circle of doubt”

Protecting the Identities of Covert Agents  . .  .. ” a circle of doubt” .. if not a crime, a terrible wrong ..

    I transcribed (très tedious is transcribing) some of the stark and compelling unedited testimony of Patrick Lang, a CIA covert guy and a man who ran all the Dept of Defense Humint Services who is so qualified to speak on this subject that the list of his distinctions is a foot long. The text is below.  

   Well, friends, I am now immersed so deep in this FixedIntelGate matter that I see mistake after mistake by anchors and others. It’s amazing how ill-informed they are. I don’t expect them to have the info, but I do expect their producers and interns to get it. I realize now why the Lîzards have such an easy time injecting their JustPlainLies into their Talking Points, The anchors don’t know enough to challenge them.

   Today Byron Dorgan and Henry Waxman had the most extraordinary Protecting the Identities of Covert Agents ‘hearing,’ joined by  Louise Slaughter, Jay Inslee, John Conyers, and Charles Schumer, serious heroes all. It was not a proper subpoena-power hearing because the Reptilians, the Lîzards refuse to hold such a hearing. (Someone said ‘Where’s Howard Baker [Republican of Watergate,  independent of the Party Line] when we need him?’)

    There is so much to tell you, and my typing ain’t much and I’ve been transcribing in pencil on little sheets while the cats (both Burmese, silver Lucy Furr and chocolate Rowan) tramped on me. The hard part of the transcribing is letting the VCR play for a sentence, pausing, then rewinding as little as possible and then playing for the next sentence. But it’s <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = “urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags” />4:45am now and I want at least to try to get the main Patrick Lang stuff down for you. All of these people in the hearing were offended in their bones at the dark damage done to the clandestine services by these acts and non-acts of the Administration.

    Transcribed from video tape of the 07.22.05 CSpan coverage, Patrick Lang says, “What has happened in regard to this disclosure and its follow-up is a kind of structural assault on the ability of the United States to have sound and well-respected and effeicient clandestine intelligence services. [Paraphrase here: The enemies now have not much of a technical signature. There’s no overhead photography of them in a pickup. They’ve gotten cunning about no signal signature.] It’s all about humint (human intelligence). Humint [usually HUMINT but that gets tiresome to look at] is about human beings. One person, an American case officer causing some foreign person to trust him enough and his unit enough and the United States enough to put his life and his fortune and indeed his sacred honor into the hands of this case officer and the American intelligence unit that stands behind this case officer. It’s all about trust. It’s completely about trust.

    The moment in which some person whether he’s an ambassador or a Montenyard in the hills of Vietnam with filed teeth decides that he’s going to trust you enough so that he’s going to believe that you’ll protect him in every way in doing what he is doing which is extremely dangerous to him and his family and to everyone else is a magic moment indeed – it’s almost sacramental in a lot of ways really. And it imposes on the case officer and the unit behind him and the United States the kind of obligations that are as serious in some ways as the seal of the confessional.

     The obligation to protect this person is absolute in fact. It’s not only absolute from the point of view of morality, it’s absolute from the point of view of practicality as well. If when in a practicing clandestine intelligence unit, the case officers believe that their superiors will not protect the identity of their sources or their own identity in fact in doing things which are dangerous and difficult, then a kind of circle of doubt begins to spread like throwing a rock into the water and it spreads in such a way so that if an intelligence service that belongs to a particular country comes to be thought generally in the world as an organization that does not protect its foreign assets, then the obvious is true in that people are not going to accept recruitment, are not going to work for you, and the smarter they are, the better placed they are, the better educated they are, the less likely they are to accept recruitment and to work for you if they believe that you are not going to fight in the last ditch to protect their identities, and so this is all completely about trust.”


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One thought on “Protecting the Identities of Covert Agents .. “a circle of doubt”

  1. Two trusts of America have been compromised in the last demi-decade. You used to have the Right To Say to the world's thugs, “You must stand by the results of an election, you must count the votes — even if you don't like the outcome.” Your losing that in 2000 was an irremediable tragedy for the cause of civil rights(read real democracy) on the planet.
    Now it seems your leaders have proved so power-mad and venal that they have fed an ultimate and vulnerable insider to the wolves to protect their backsides. Lousy lot of rotters, your leaders. Better luck next time and none too soon.

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