Intelligence: The Return Of The Russian Game

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November 10,2008: Russia is returning to its Cold War espionage techniques, in an effort to stay current on NATO secrets. Recently, for example, Estonian counter-intelligence efforts revealed that an Estonian defense official, and a Spanish citizen working for the Russians (but passing himself off as a businessman, while secretly recruiting spies for Russia), were stealing NATO secrets. The Spanish agent turned out to be an "illegal" (a Russian agent with a carefully invented background that made him appear as someone else with nothing to do with Russian intelligence). The Russian media are playing this up as an example of Estonian ineptness. But it's quite the opposite. The Estonians not only detected the Estonian official the Russian "illegal" recruited, but exposed the Russian agent as well. That's a great loss for the Russians, as it takes years, and millions of dollars, to create an effective "illegal." Now they have one less.

 


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