The warning, in accordance to those that have learn it, was primarily aimed toward entrance line company officers, the folks concerned most straight within the recruiting and vetting of sources. The cable reminded C.I.A. case officers to focus not simply on recruiting sources, but in addition on safety points together with vetting informants and evading adversarial intelligence providers.
Among the explanations for the cable, in accordance to folks conversant in the doc, was to prod C.I.A. case officers to take into consideration steps they’ll tackle their very own to do a greater job managing informants.
Former officers stated that there has to be extra deal with safety and counterintelligence, amongst each senior leaders and frontline personnel, particularly when it comes to recruiting informants, which C.I.A. officers name brokers.
“No one at the end of the day is being held responsible when things go south with an agent,” stated Douglas London, a former company operative. “Sometimes there are things beyond our control but there are also occasions of sloppiness and neglect and people in senior positions are never held responsible.”
Mr. London stated he was unaware of the cable. But his new ebook, “The Recruiter: Spying and the Lost Art of American Intelligence,” argues that the C.I.A.’s shift towards covert motion and paramilitary operations undermined conventional espionage that depends on securely recruiting and dealing with brokers.
World large messages to C.I.A. stations and bases that be aware troubling traits or issues, and even warnings about counterintelligence issues, aren’t unheard-of, in accordance to former officers. Still, the memo outlining a particular variety of informants arrested or killed by adversarial powers is an uncommon stage of element, one which alerts the significance of the present issues. Former officers stated that counterintelligence officers usually like to preserve such particulars secret even from the broad C.I.A. work power.
Asked in regards to the memo, a C.I.A. spokeswoman declined to remark.
Sheetal T. Patel, who final yr turned the C.I.A.’s assistant director for counterintelligence and leads that mission heart, has not been reluctant to ship out broad warnings to the C.I.A. neighborhood of present and former officers.