Friday, January 06, 2006

Michael Ledeen on James "NSA illegal wiretaps" Risen's new book

Ledeen is as brilliant as always, and do detailed to even pull quotes from in my opinion. His main point though is Risen touts his points in State of War as ineptitude and failures by the CIA. Ledeen thinks that perhaps we may have fallen prey to excellent an counterintelligence operation by the Iranians as we did while battling the Soviet Union during the Cold War.

Anything could be its own opposite. He [James Jesus Angleton] loved to tell the story of the "Trust," the Soviet disinformation operation that tricked the West into supporting a bogus army of presumed anti-Communists who were working for Soviet intelligence all along. We thought we had penetrated the Soviet Union, but it was the other way around; they had penetrated our intelligence services. They found out what we were up to, and they deceived us into striking at their strongest link. So it’s inevitable that he would wonder if Risen’s stories were much more important than Risen realized. Maybe they show that the Iranians have done something similar. They’re certainly up to it.

Certainly makes for an interesting possibility, and one similar to what looks to have happened in Iraq: Iranian mullahs feeding us false intelligence to throw us off the right path versus Saddam basically bragging about his nuclear program because his scientists were lying to him about the progress (or lack there of in reality). Both lead to the same result, we fell for the intel, but the intel was bad. Hardly a new game in the spy business, but I love reading Ledeen recount it. He writes real life like a spy novel.

Scary good stuff.