From All Things Crime Blog

A veteran CIA officer who served in Moscow during the climax of the Cold War in the 1980’s sat down with All Things Crime Blog for an interview to discuss the spy scandal that erupted in Moscow on Monday when U.S. Embassy Third Secretary Ryan Fogle was arrested by the FSB, the successor organization to the Soviet-Era KGB, and charged with attempting to recruit a Russian counterterrorism official with promises of a $1M a year salary.  Rather than keep the matter hush-hush as is more typically the case, the Russian government of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin chose to trumpet the bust as loudly as possible, releasing video of the arrest and Fogle’s detention at the FSB’s Lubyanka complex, and photos of Fogle in an ill-fitting blonde wig that was described by the New York Times as “more Austin Powers than Jason Bourne”.   In other articles, the low-tech “spy kit” that was seized, and which included pepper spray, a microphone, a low-tech cellphone, a compass, a lighter, and a Moscow street map – plus $100,000 in Euros – has elicited scornful references to Maxwell Smart.  Yet as our interview makes clear, things are never quite as they seem in the world of espionage.   

Q: You served in Moscow during the Cold War; what do you make of the Ryan Fogle arrest and expulsion?  It’s being portrayed as a tragically, or perhaps comically, bungled operation. Is it?

A: Well, remember we’re only hearing one side of it so far.  The FSB has spun it the way they want to, and the CIA is saying nothing.   So what we’re getting is a very one-sided presentation.

Read the rest at All Things Crime Blog


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