Tip of the Hat to DefDog and Marcus Aurelius
Associated Press, 21 November 2011
WASHINGTON (AP) – 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.
Phi Beta Iota: CIA’s long-standing dirty little secret has been the utter ineffectiveness of the Directorate of Operations (DO) that is a mix of lazy, arrogant, and inept when it comes to non-official cover (NOC) and persists in housing 90% of any Station, including the communicators, in the one official US Government building that can be found in most capitals. Now that they are all armed fortresses that walk-ins cannot penetrate, the CIA officers bouncing in and out all day and throwing money around like no other diplomat, stand out like sore thumbs. The fact is that CIA is blown around the world, the other countries simply have more fun running selected agents as doubles and keeping CIA busy lest it actually recruit someone important. Perhaps one day the US public will have a sane, competent intelligence community.