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03 July 2010


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So they Russians were building their own ' Sayanim network ' much like the Israeli Mossad has built here in our U.S.. A dangerous lot, the Israelis I mean.

R Whitman

I really think that Pat Lang needs to use this incident as a take off point for one of his novels. Should be good entertainment. Imagine the movie and TV rights.


I,m in furious agreement with Col. Lang. Send them home.

Ideally they should have been left in place - and one day someone like Lani Kass is seen knocking on Anna's door....

I never thought I'd be nostalgic about the cold war.

Happy Fourth of July to all.


They couldn't be any worse than the lunatics we have in our 'think tanks'.

Patrick Lang


Interesting thought. This is a bit Graham Greenish or maybe Evelyn Waugh. pl

R Whitman

I thought more John LeCarre.


When you have a foreign government like Israel and its intelligence apparatus turn our U.S. aid dollars back on U.S. and use them to pay for think tanks they then use against U.S., that is frightening. Russia or China building think tanks in our U.S. would immediately send up red flags, whereas the Israelis have been doing it quietly and quite successfully, is dangerous for our overall U.S. National Security. Now thanks to such goings on, we have buried moles all over the place with a sayanim network to aid and assist them. Shudder, shudder.

eagle in the mountains

Many people are puzzled by the Keystone Cops atmosphere to the whole thing. The alleged perps seem in some respects to have been very amateurish in their tradecraft--for example, leaving the password next to the computer with instructions which keys to press; Anna Chapman accepting an unvouched-for undercover officer at face value and handing him her laptop; a third alleged perp accepting a forged passport from an unvouched-for undercover officer and delivering it to a third party. Any comments as an old pro, Col.?

Why do they not seem to come up with anything substantive in all those years? At the rate they were going they would have required another 10 years to start sending solid intel.

The only guy who seems to have known what he was doing has gone to ground.

Why did the FBI send in undercover agents? Surely it was inevitable that a serious agent of the SVR would check with her real handler about an unknown party who approached her claiming to be from the SVR, thus blowing the CI operation. Or is in only in novels that spies have common sense?

As for going home, it seems inevitable, especially given that Anna Chapman's father is evidently a senior figure in the KGB, that we are going to hear about 10 American 'businessmen' who are arrested for espionage in the Russian Federation. There will be the usual protests that no they're not NOC's, just simple businessmen, but ultimately won't there be a trade? What was the point of this whole affair?

Patrick Lang


I think these folks were well on the way to becoming American. This is an eternal problem with "illegals" and NOCs. They tend to become their cover. pl

John Howley

Karla is spinning in his grave.

The Twisted Genius

PL said' "I think these folks were well on the way to becoming American."

Wasn't there a movie based on this situation a few years back? It was definitely a comedy about Russian/Soviet deep cover officers that received the activation signal long after they thought they were forgotten. They, too, preferred their cover lives.

Here's a little something for the amusement of the SST crew on our Independence Day:


Cold War Zoomie

Even countries that are supposedly close "allies" (a much over-worked word). spy on each other.

Tell me it ain't so! (chuckle.)


I second the call for a Pat Lang novel about this sort of stuff! (recently finishged "Butcher's Cleaver" ...)

Adam L. Silverman

Nice choice of cover names. Annie (Ann Eliza) Chapman was one of Jack the Rippers victims. Perhaps we should be looking for New Yorkers named Liz Stride or Montague John Druitt too...

eagle in the mountains

@Adam L. Silverman

The Telegraph in London is doing stories based on interviews with Ann Chapman's ex. She kept her married name (Chapman) after she divorced him. Her real name is said to be Anya Kuschenko, so Ann is simply the Americanized version of her real first name.

Stratfor had an interesting analysis of the affair that was printed in Asia Times Online.

@Col. Lang:

There's a pic of the Jersey couple at table in the yard of their Hoboken apt bldg. The table is full of all kinds of brand name consumer goods--Coca Cola, Heinz Ketchup etc. They look tickled pink with their new-found consumer loot. Maybe you're right about going native. Still, trade-craft ain't what it used to be.


Send them home and their children with them.

Except the kids born here are American citizens. They can't be forced back to Russia.

The whole business is incredibly messed up, and not just legally.


Oh yes, happy 4th of July!

I heard Ray McGovern on the affair and he was unimpressed also. He points out that the people were accused of (a) not registering as a foreign agent and (b) for money laundering - implying that they did little to no damage to the US. So, small fish.

Open question is the why, and why now. He mocked that it might have had to do with a current need in the FBI for positive publicity.

I have also heard mention of the angle that the spy scandal might endanger the US-Russian Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty though. Is it plausible that the spies were caught now to torpedo passage of the treaty in congress? Or is it just a de facto consequence of the timing?


Russia or China building think tanks in our U.S. would immediately send up red flags, whereas the Israelis have been doing it quietly and quite successfully
Indeed, imagine a 'Muslim Institute for National Security Affairs' or a 'Washington Institute for Russian Eastern European and Central Asian Policy' or a 'Chinese Enterprise Institute' ...



One of the 'problems' has been Obama keeping on Bush43 hold-overs like the FBI director, Sec-O-Defense, etc., the same who flaunted in your face, and broke existing U.S. laws with smiles on their face under the Bush43 term. By Obama not firing/replacing/prosecuting them, he has allowed them to continue to be a bane in our nation's existence unfettered.


The sexy Russian Spy headlines do provide a convenient Look-Over-There!!! for the "synagogue bombers" trial story.

N M Salamon

THIS is diversion to make MSM busy with non-existant problems, while the important issues are forgotten [or remain "secret" -- the reset with Russia is over, see Mrs Clinton in Poland, subversion in 75 countries is not important, etc].

Mr. Lang' proffered solution seems to be the best.


Do these Russian "spies" look like amateurs because they really are amateurs that someone from the FBI attempted to recruit in a sting operation? Is this whole case beginning to unravel?

"A lawyer for a Russian diplomat's daughter accused of being a spy said Friday that her father told her to go to police with a fake passport an undercover FBI agent had given to her, leading to her arrest and solitary confinement."


Patrick Lang

blowback and Salomon

I hope you guys enjoy your fantasies. Most intelligence operations are foolish nonsense. Get over the movies. pl


Col. Lang,


blowback and Salomon

I hope you guys enjoy your fantasies. Most intelligence operations are foolish nonsense. Get over the movies. pl

.....or plain hard work gathering info that is in the nooks and crannies of the public domain.

I confess at one time to "dumpster diving", it is amazing how many companies don't bother to shred drafts of their strategic plans or trial balances. Sunday mornings were often spent on a bicycle in back lanes, finding "cage lining for the Gerbil".

Patrick Lang


That's right. One part fantasy and two parts drudgery. pl

Cold War Zoomie

...two parts drudgery.

It all seems so romantic when viewed from afar. But it's just another rat race. All those household bills still need to be paid.

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