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SpyTalk: August 29, 2010 - September 4, 2010

U.S. officials: Gareth Williams death not spy-related

British media reports suggesting a spy-world connection to the gruesome death of U.K. code-breaker Gareth Williams are groundless, according to U.S. intelligence officials. While refusing to comment publicly about the death of Williams, whose decomposing remains were discovered stuffed in...

By Jeff Stein  | September 2, 2010; 9:39 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
Categories:  Homeland Security, Intelligence, Justice/FBI, Lawandcourts  
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Israeli spies wooing U.S. Muslims, sources say

The CIA took an internal poll not long ago about friendly foreign intelligence agencies. The question, mostly directed to employees of the clandestine service branch, was: Which are the best allies among friendly spy services, in terms of liaison with...

By Jeff Stein  | September 2, 2010; 1:58 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (8)
Categories:  Homeland Security, Intelligence, Justice/FBI  
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Li Fengzhi, Chinese spy who defected to U.S., facing deportation

The U.S. government is trying to deport Li Fengzhi, a veteran Chinese intelligence agent who defected here in 2004, back to China, where he could well be executed on charges of treason, he and others said in interviews. The reasons...

By Jeff Stein  | September 2, 2010; 12:25 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  Foreign policy, Homeland Security, Intelligence, Justice/FBI  
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Mosque rhetoric boosting Taliban, report says

Newsweek is reporting that the Taliban is using controversy over the “Ground Zero mosque” to raise money and recruit new fighters, both inside and outside Afghanistan. It’s proved such an effective tool that “it now heads the list of talking...

By Jeff Stein  | August 31, 2010; 2:52 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (24)
Categories:  Homeland Security, Intelligence  
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Top China bank official's defection rumors quashed

U.S. government officials are throwing cold water on super-heated internal Chinese reports that the head of China’s top bank has defected. Stratfor, the global intelligence analysis group, reported Monday that Chinese-language blogs were reporting that Zhou Xiaochuan, governor of the...

By Jeff Stein  | August 30, 2010; 7:50 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Financial/business, Intelligence  
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CIA training Sudan's spies as Obama officials fight over policy

American officials may be at odds over U.S. policy toward Sudan, but the CIA is soldiering on there. The East African regime is not just an international pariah for its genocidal track record in the western region of Darfur, it’s...

By Jeff Stein  | August 30, 2010; 1:15 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  Foreign policy, Intelligence  
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CIA Red Cells and common sense

It’s been called “boring … a snoozer,” a paper that “pales in comparison” with previous WikiLeaks disclosures. And for sure, last week's exposure of a classified CIA study on foreign reaction to U.S. terrorism "exports" was a dud compared with...

By Jeff Stein  | August 29, 2010; 8:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (9)
Categories:  Foreign policy, Intelligence, Media  
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