Thursday, January 31, 2008



By: Kenneth R. Timmerman

A controversial Iranian-American, Goli Ameri-Yazdi, will appear before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Wednesday, to answer questions about her role in raising funds for a lobbying group whose stated goal is to oppose U.S. trade sanctions on Iran and to promote a resumption of diplomatic ties with Tehran.

Both goals run directly counter to current Bush administration policy, which is aimed at increasing pressure on Tehran to get Iran to suspend uranium enrichment and to cut off support for insurgent groups in Iraq.

She will also face questions about her participation in an international telecommunications conference held in Isfahan, Iran, in August 2003.

The FBI has been investigating the legality of this and other high-tech conferences in Iran as possible trade embargo violations, Newsmax has learned.

Ameri-Yazdi ran a well-funded challenger’s campaign in 2004 against Democratic incumbent Rep. David Wu in Oregon’s 1st congressional district, but was beaten by a 16-point margin.

Since then, she has been appointed as a U.S. delegate to the United Nations General Assembly, and to a U.N. human rights forum.

She has been nominated to become assistant secretary of state for educational and cultural affairs, her first government job with line authority.

If confirmed, she will coordinate the State Department’s cultural exchange and educational programs, including Fulbright scholarships, and will supervise ongoing education efforts in Iraq.

She also could play a role in bringing Iranian scholars to the United States under existing but little used State Department programs.

But Iranian-American activists in Los Angeles tell Newsmax that they are “disappointed” with her nomination for a top State Department job.

Goli Ameri has a very poor record when it comes to human rights, religious freedom, and women's rights issues,” said Pooya Dayanim, spokesman for Iranian Jewish Public Affairs Committee.

Dayanim noted that as a candidate for Congress in 2004, Ameri-Yazdi “received money from individuals with suspicious ties and known sympathies for the Iranian regime. This is cronyism at its worst.”

According to Hassan Daioleslam, an aide to former Iranian Prime Minister Mehdi Barzagan, who now lives in the United States, Ameri-Yazdi is being helped by a pro-regime “lobby” in the United States.

"Many contributors to Goli Ameri's political campaign [in Oregon] were clearly part of an Iranian regime "lobby" in the United States, who hoped their contributions would influence United States policy toward Iran,” Daioleslam told Newsmax.

"Until U.S. law enforcement conducts a serious investigation of this lobby, the appointment of someone such as Goli Ameri would seem unwise,” he said.

In May 2007, Ameri-Yazdi co-authored a letter to wealthy Iranian-Americans, calling for contributions to a new organization whose stated goals included lobbying the federal government to lift “unreasonable OFAC restrictions” on trade with Iran.

The Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) regulates U.S. trade with state sponsors of terrorism and is in charge of enforcing the U.S. trade embargo on Iran.

Known at the time as the “New York/Napa Task Force,” Ameri-Yazdi’s group planned to raise $3.5 million to establish a massive lobbying and civic action campaign aimed at changing U.S. policies toward Iran and promoting issues of questionable concern to most Iranian-Americans, such as banning the fingerprinting of Iranian government officials when they come to the United States.

Unlike U.S.-based Iranian opposition groups, the task force was not focused on bringing public awareness to the Tehran regime’s abysmal violations of human rights.

Instead, a prospectus circulated by the group stated that it would lobby the U.S. government “to begin direct dialogue with Iran, moving toward the resumption of diplomatic relations.”

The prospectus also stated the group’s members opposed any U.S. efforts to overthrow the Tehran regime, and sought instead to promote U.S.-Iranian business ventures.

Some of Ameri-Yazdi’s biggest supporters as a congressional candidate have lobbied for an end to U.S. sanctions on Iran or have businesses that trade with Iran through third countries.

Two of her campaign contributors, Dr. Akbar Ghahary and Hooshang Amirahmadi, even ran as candidates for president of the Islamic Republic of Iran in the 1990s.

Ameri-Yazdi’s nomination has Iranian-American Republicans scratching their heads, since most of her political friends are Democrats.

In June 2002, Ameri-Yazdi appeared at a John Kerry fund-raiser at the Ritz Carlton hotel at Laguna Niguel, Calif., that was sponsored by pro-regime lobbyist, Houshang Amirahmadi, and top Democratic party fund-raiser, Hassan Nemazee.

Nemazee hosted a dinner for Hillary Clinton last March that brought in more than $500,000 for her presidential campaign, The Associated Press has reported.

He raised another $500,000 for John Kerry’s failed presidential bid in 2004, and has donated big bucks to Bill Clinton’s legal defense fund and other Democratic causes.


For more information on Houshang AmirAhmadi, Namazi and also Trita Parsi, and teh LOBBYING efforts that appear to have used Goli Ameri-Yazdi, please go to the article posted Thursday, July 19th, 2007 through the link below.

I would perhaps guess that she was taken into the arms of the top layer of the State Dept., via the #3 man Burns, who recently resigned after dragging Condoleeza Rice into an appease and negotiate profile vis-a-vis the Islamic regime in Iran, for whom he was constantly apologizing and finding excuses.

Here is Houshang AmirAhmadi presenting Clinton's Secretary of State Madeleine Albright with an expensive picture frame, seemingly with Iran's Supreme Ruler's picture in side it.

On the same occasion, he presented the Clinton appointee with a very exopensive Persian carpet.

So, here is the visual of the lobbying efforts expounded in the article linked below.

Sunday, January 27, 2008



As many parents anxiously await the next phone call from their sons and daughters fighting the war on terrorism in Southwest Asia, one mother journeyed across the Atlantic to not only see her child, but also to replace him on the front line.

Staff Sgt. Tammi Johnson, a reservist with the 507th Security Forces Squadron at Tinker Air Force Base, Okla., arrived to Kirkuk Air Base Jan. 20 and will receive a complete week of training from her son, Senior Airman Derrick Johnson, before he heads back to the U.S.

Atop a remote guard tower, mother and son stood post peering across the barbed wire into the desolate desert plains surrounding Kirkuk AB. In this setting, the role of the caretaker is reversed as Airman Johnson instructs his mother, Sergeant Johnson, on perimeter defense practices as both are assigned to the 506th Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron.

"This is all just a big coincidence," said Airman Johnson, a reservist with the 610th Security Forces Squadron from Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base Fort Worth, Texas. "When I found out she was coming to replace me, my jaw dropped just wondering what the chances were of this occurring."

The coincidence of this pair choosing to serve in the same military branch and career field is only trumped by the fact that out of the thousands of Air Force security forces Airmen and numerous deployment locations -- Sergeant Johnson was randomly selected to relieve her son in the guard post.

This chain of events was put into play in March 2006 when Airman Johnson visited a local Air Force recruiter. His mother, who was a civilian at the time, accompanied him on the trip.

"My son was graduating from high school and talked to me about the Air Force, and as his mother, I naturally wanted to go to the recruiter with him," Sergeant Johnson said. "As a joke, the recruiter asked if I was interested in joining up. I laughed it off at first, but then he started asking questions about my age and how long I had previously served."

Sergeant Johnson initially joined the Air Force in 1983 and worked in the personnel career field for several years before separating.

"I gave it some real thought for a while and talked to the recruiter some more," she said. "When I previously served, I was always interested in the security forces career field. I'm an active person and don't enjoy doing paperwork.

Monday, January 21, 2008


The Night

Aaron had called in the discoveries made in the desert. Any explosive material is usually detonated by the EOD (Explosive Ordnance Disposal) team in the area where it is found.

Under the circumstances, Aaron thought the mud huts, which were obviously used for making or storing bombs and nothing else, should be destroyed also. He made his recommendation to the 1st Battalion headquarters, and we sat patiently in the trucks awaiting their response.

Everyone was hungry but it did no good to dwell on it because we knew we had a long night ahead of us.The EOD team was being sent out with a convoy from Delta Company, and if any or all of the huts were to be destroyed, that meant waiting for F-16s too, which would drop the bombs.

Finally the EOD team arrived, and sent out a robot to investigate the IEDs made out of oil cans.

Once the team had confirmed that they were in fact IEDs, they proceeded to the next step, the fun part: the explosion. We had a front row seat, and there is something satisfying about a controlled blast.

Meanwhile, we were losing daylight and patience. The fate of the huts was debated. The EOD team made its way to the building that contained the bags of wired explosives. The men back at the Battalion explained over the radio that while they thought it made sense to blow up the handful of empty huts, the Brigade thought it might be better to wait.

Oblivious to this discussion, the robot went about his business of inspection. The EOD team thought rather than setting off this batch of explosives, it would be better to just blow up the hut, so that was one more vote for dropping bombs.

All the while, we sat in the trucks as if at a drive-in movie that had plenty of action but also many frustrating lulls. And no refreshments except hard candy and goldfish crackers.

The F-16s had been summoned, but had not arrived yet, so the EOD team went to take care of the mine George had found. With all of their housekeeping done, all that was left to do was watch a bomb drop.

Hours had managed to pass since Aaron first reported the situation to the Battalion. The trucks huddled in the darkness, full of cranky soldiers who had run out of cigarettes and snacks, and a reporter who was glad she hadn’t drunk a lot of water during the day. Finally, the air above our heads pounded with the sound of the F-16s.

The F-16s had been given the location of the hut to be bombed, but in the darkness, in an area where everything looks like everything else, they couldn’t find it. We watched and waited, the soldiers flashing every sort of light they had in the direction of the hut, but nothing was working. The driver of my vehicle,

Mike Fuemmeler, couldn’t take it anymore, and got out of the humvee, ran to the hut, and threw two chem-lites (small, glowing sticks) on the roof of the building. Moments later, the F-16s signaled that they had spotted the target. Everyone following the action rolled their eyes and breathed a sigh of relief.

We had been granted permission to bomb a second hut, the one where the two IEDs had been found, so it appeared the evening would be ending with a bang, and then another bang.

After several minutes, the first bomb made contact, and it resulted in a nice explosion, but not as big as we had hoped or expected. We left the viewing area and drove down to the site expecting to see a pile of rubble where the hut had been. But somehow only part of the hut had destroyed, so we went back to the viewing area and waited for the sequel.

The second explosion was louder, more convincing, and did enough damage that we didn’t have to worry about the hut or the explosives it contained anymore. The second hut proved somewhat challenging to the F-16s too. One bomb landed on the ground behind the hut, but the second reached its target, and we enjoyed another satisfying explosion.

Nevertheless, the show had gone on long enough, and we were anxious to get home.

It had been a day longer than most. But the soldiers don’t receive a special medal for working fourteen hours plus. They don’t get time and a half. And they don’t get to sleep in the next day like I did.

Most days are not so eventful or so long, but it is gratifying to see the soldiers’ persistence pay off. Maybe the people they spoke with throughout the day did nothing but delay their progress, but when faced with the desolate desert landscape, the soldiers of Bravo Company dug their heels in and found things when it looked like there was nothing to find.

The show we were treated to at the end of the night was a Bravo Company production. With a little help from an interpreter named George.

Sunday, January 20, 2008


Dude, where's the Quagmire? One wire dispatch put it this way:

"It was something not seen in Baghdad since before the 2003 invasion -- people publicly welcoming a new year with singing, dancing and general revelry. The ballrooms of two landmark hotels -- the Palestine and the Sheraton -- were full of people for the first New Year's Eve celebrations after four years of violence that has bloodied Iraq . . . Iraq's capital was sufficiently calm to warrant the two high-end parties in the once posh hotels."

This is Iraq, one year after the surge was announced:

"U.S. troop deaths in December -- 21 -- numbered just one more than they did in February 2004, the least-deadly month since the start of the Iraq War in March 2003, according to the Associated Press.

And the U.S. deaths fell sharply in the second half of 2007 after the influx of 30,000 additional troops." --

In an article titled, "Normalcy returns to Baghdad, block by block," the Washington Times reports that "signs of improved security in Baghdad go beyond the obvious dampening of street battles and bombings:

It's in the smaller transformations taking place in neighborhoods that the seeds of possibility are starting to take root."

In places like East Rashid, "best known from 2006 until last fall for sectarian violence and al Qaeda's campaign of terror," where U.S. troops faced "snipers, mortar attacks and roadside blasts," everything has changed and there's a "growing sense of hope and confidence," as shown by the growing number of refugees who are returning home.

Last week the Iraqi parliament, by a unanimous show of hands, passed landmark de-Baathification legislation, a political reconciliation bill that was one of the big benchmarks that Congress established to measure progress.

But, hold on. What were the Democrats saying back when Bush announced the surge? They're now claiming they knew all along it would work -- at least to tamp down the violence. I quote, you decide:

Four days before Bush announced the surge, Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi said that "adding more combat troops will only endanger more Americans."

The day after the Democrats took control of Congress, Reid and Pelosi told Bush in a letter that "We are well past the point of more troops for Iraq."

A few weeks later, Pelosi said this:

[Bush] has to answer for his war. He has dug a hole so deep he can't even see the light on this. It's a tragedy. It's a stark blunder."

Pelosi: "The president wants to escalate a war where his generals are telling him that the additional troops will not be effective."

Immediately after Bush announced the surge, Sen. Barack Obama, appearing on the Larry King Show, said there is no "evidence that an additional 15,000 to 20,000 more U.S. troops is going to make a significant dent in the sectarian violence that's taking place there."

Sen. Dick Durbin, delivering the Democrat response to the President's announcement last January, complained that "escalation of this war is not the change the American people called for in the last election . . . the president's plan moves the American commitment in the wrong direction."

And, besides, "twenty-thousand American soldiers are too few to end this civil war in Iraq and too many American lives to risk on top of those we've already lost."

Sen. Hillary Clinton, in an interview on Fox News' "On The Record," blasted the surge: "I opposed it, based on what I knew of the situation before I went, and I'm even more strongly against it now because I think the chances of success are limited at best."

In another TV interview, she warned that the "president's proposal to add 21,000 troops in an escalation of the combat situation is not going to work."

Sen. Ben Nelson slammed the proposed surge as relying on too many assumptions. "It assumes an increase of 21,000 troops is sustainable . . . it assumes 21,000 troops are sufficient to achieve the objective of securing Baghdad . . . it assumes Iraqi troops will be trained, equipped and capable and will show up and engage the enemy . . . The failure of any one of these assumptions could undermine the entire plan."

Democrat Rep. Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona blasted the surge, saying "I sense from (talking with) our soldiers that the Iraqi people's heart is not in this."

Democrat Rep. Joe Sestak of Pennsylvania said that "we're doubling down on a bad military bet. A surge hasn't worked and it won't work again."

Democrat Rep. Ike Shelton of Missouri, Armed Services Committee head honcho, warned that "our experience has shown that a limited infusion of troops (as called for in Bush's surge strategy) will not necessarily produce the improvement to Iraqi security we had hoped. I remain to be convinced that increasing the number of U.S. troops in Iraq will have a measurable affect on the security situation in Iraq."

In April 2007, before the full surge had kicked in, Harry Reid emphatically declared "this war is lost and the surge is not accomplishing anything as indicated by the extreme violence in Iraq yesterday."

Even the "experts" were against the surge, predicting it wouldn't work:

Retired Marine General Joseph Hoar, former head of CENTCOM, criticized the troop surge and advised Bush to pull out of Iraq.

Other than a higher rank, has the same old fuddy-duddy mental accuity as FORMER Marine, Congressman Jack (the Pork-Barrel) Murtha.

"In the Marines, we say, "When you're in a hole, stop digging."

Retired Army General and NBC News military "analyst" Barry McCaffrey said.

"I personally think the surge of five U.S. Army brigades and a few Marine battalions dribbled out over five months is a fool's errand."

Even U.S. intelligence was against the surge -- the surest sign yet that it was going to work. "A new National Intelligence Estimate on the conflict presented to the president . . . describes 'an increasingly perilous situation in which the United States has little control and there is a strong possibility of further deterioration'" despite the surge, reported the Christian Science Monitor in an article cheerfully titled, "US Intelligence report projects deteriorating situation in Iraq".

Small wonder Iraq has been moved to the back-burner by the media.

AND the Media want us all to forget the DEMOCRATS (in control at the time) promoted and passed bills pointing to go to war. BEFORE BUSH BECAME PRESIDENT!

See links below.

Sunday, January 13, 2008


DOD's Complicity in the Islamization of America

by Reginald Firehammer

Perhaps it should not be shocking that a highly respected U.S. military specialists on Islamist law should be fired from the Department of Defense (DOD) at the behest of a Muslim.

Paul Sperry's 2005 book, Infiltration: How Muslim Spies and Subversives have Penetrated Washington, already documents the extent of Islamist influence and infiltration in US prisons, the military, universities, and key government agencies such as the FBI, the Pentagon, the State Department, and even the White House. We already knew that, but there is something much more frightening about this story.

It begins with the, "Muslim Brotherhood," (Al-Ikhwan) and that began in 1928, in Egypt. "Al-Banna [the founder] based his ideas ... on the tenets of Wahhabism ..." and began "jihadia training."

From the beginning the objective of the Brotherhood has been "to install an Islamic empire ruled under Sharia Law and a Caliphate across the Muslim world and ultimately the entire world, through stages designed to 'Islamisize,' incrementally, targeted nations."

How successful have they been? In Europe it is fait accompli. But what about America?

In his 2004 article, "The Islamic States of America?, Daniel Pipes was already warning of the clear intention of the Brotherhood to turn, "the United States into an Islamic state."

"The Muslim Brotherhood has been active in the United States since the 1960s. ... " and, "has succeeded in setting up numerous US front groups since the 1990s that should be regarded as hostile and a threat to the United States, according to Stephen Coughlin, a lawyer and military intelligence specialist on the Pentagon Joint Staff. ...

In a September 2007 memorandum, Coughlin explains that many US Muslim aid and civil rights groups viewed as moderate by the Justice Department and other government agencies are linked to the pro-jihadi Muslim Brotherhood.

The groups are also engaged in influence and deception operations designed to mask their activities and the overriding goal of their organization, that being the advancement of Islamofascist doctrine within the United States. [Remember that name: Stephen Coughlin.]

Among the organizations that are fronts for the Muslim Brotherhood are the Muslim Students Association, the North American Islamic Trust, the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), the American Muslim Council, the Muslim American Society, the International Institute of Islamic Thought, the Islamic Association for Palestine, the Palestine Committee, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), and, the Holy Land Foundation.

It was the recent failed government trial of the Muslim Brotherhood charitable front organization, the Holy Land Foundation, which supports HAMAS terrorism, that brought to light the supposed "moderate" Council on American-Islamic Relations CAIR is another Muslim Brotherhood, terrorist-supporting, organization.

Foxes in the Chicken Coop (or Muzzies in the Pentagon)

The rest of this story is about three people, people in the most sensitive and powerful positions related to America's defence: Gordon England, Hesham Islam, and Stephen Coughlin.
Gordon England, is the US Deputy Secretary of Defense, the second highest defence position in the country, "delegated full power and authority to act for the Secretary of Defense and exercise the powers of the Secretary on any and all matters for which the Secretary is authorized," which includes being, "the principal defense policy adviser to the President ... responsible for the formulation of general defense policy and policy related to all matters of direct concern to the Department of Defense ...."

Hesham Islam is Gordon England's senior advisor. Hesham was born in Egypt and grow up in Cairo, later moving to Iraq where his naval officer father help establish the Arabian Gulf naval academy. He married an American woman, moved to the US, joined the Navy, attended Officer Candidate School, and retire 20 years later as a Navy commander.

What kind of advice does England's advisor give him? “'He’s my interlocutor,' England said. 'He represents me to the international community. He assists me in my own outreach efforts, and he’s extraordinarily good at it.'” [Emphasis mine.]
In case you've forgotten, this is the Department of Defence, as in "defending the country against foreign aggression, terrorists, or other agents bent on harming the country or its citizens."

The DOD is not a public relations agency. It's purpose is to prepare for and wage war if it is necessary. The joint chiefs of staff of the Army, Air Force, Navy, and Marines are the operating branches of the DOD.

Hesham is a Muslim who, "works closely with the Muslim-American community." "England said he rarely disagrees with Islam’s guidance. 'After all,' he said, 'if you have a good doctor, you listen to your doctor, right?'"

The problem is, having Hesham as advisor is like having the fox as advisor on how to keep the chickens safe from foxes. No doubt it was Hesham who advised England to meet with the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), which just happens to be one of the Muslim Brotherhood front organizations listed above.

Maj (USAR) Stephen Coughlin is "the Islam Law ‘go to guy’ on the Pentagon Joint Staff. Coughlin is the author of a brief on Islamic law and Jihadist doctrine that has recently been cleared by both the Joint Staff and DIA for publication," according to Jerry Gordon.

Coughlin "is to my knowledge the only Islamic Law scholar on the Joint Staff," LTC Joseph C. Myers has written. That is, he was on the Joint Staff.

It seems Maj Coughlin, "wrote a memorandum several months ago based on documents made public in the federal trial in Dallas [see above] that revealed the covert plan by the Muslim Brotherhood, ... to subvert the United States using front groups."

The memo apparently complained about the fact members of one of those front groups, the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), had been hosted by Mr. England at the Pentagon.

"Hasham Islam confronted Mr. Coughlin during a meeting several weeks ago [and] sought to have Mr. Coughlin soften his views on Islamist extremism. [Emphasis mine] Mr. Coughlin was accused directly by Mr. Islam of being a Christian zealot or extremist 'with a pen.'"

Under pressure of Hasham Islam, and apparently other "pro-Muslim" officials, Stephen Coughlin has been fired and the Pentagon has lost the U.S. military's most important specialist on Islamist extremism.

Did You Hear About It?

If, as most Americans do, you get your news from the Mainstream Media, unless you are an insider, or happened to read the two Bill Gertz articles I quoted above in The Washington Times, it is unlikely you've heard anything at all about this story.

I checked all of the following MSM sources, and unless they have reported something subsequently, not one mention the sacking of Stephen Coughlin: ABC News, Associated Press, CBS, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, Reuters, and CNS

Those of us who get our news from the Internet found plenty of information about this story. The links below contain more information and other viewpoints about it. The one thing they all agree on, when it comes to the ideological aspects of the war on terror and militant Islamism, it looks like we have already surrendered.

Monday, January 07, 2008



Armed Iranian speedboats swarmed three US warships in the strategic Strait of Hormuz over the weekend, radioing a threat to blow them up and sending tensions flaring ahead of President George W. Bush's trip to the Mideast, US officials said Monday.

Alan Note: after the small boat attack on the USS Cole in Yemen which tore a huge hole in the vessel and killed some 18 sailors, the swarm threat by small boats has become a key Iranian tactic against the more powerful US Navy ships.

This event. while appearing somewhat exaggerated by the Media, does miss underlining the key fact. Iran was testing at what point a REAL attack would meet with a response from the US Navy. As opposed to this "rehearsal" of brinksmanship testing reality.

"I'm coming at you and you will blow up in a couple of minutes," a Defense Department official quoted the radio transmission as saying.

Crew aboard two of the five speedboats also dumped floating boxes into the path of one of the vessels, but it passed them without incident, officials said.

Alan Note: these harmless WHITE boxes are MARKERS in an attack rehearsal. Such boxes are used to help guide these speed boats in placing explosives effectively and efficiently in poor lighting conditions. They were not an empty gesture.

The US government accused Iran of engaging in provocative and potentially hostile behavior and vowed "to confront Iranian behavior where it seeks to do harm to either us or our friends and allies in the region."

Iran played down the incident, which came just days before Bush travels to the region to boost the Israeli-Palestinian peace process and assure allies that Washington continues to view Iran as a threat.

Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Mohammed Ali Hosseini called it "an ordinary occurrence which happens every now and then for both sides."

He told the state news agency IRNA that it was "similar to past incidents and a natural and an ordinary issue."

Pentagon officials said Iranian speedboats swarmed three US navy ships in international waters in the Strait of Hormuz on Sunday at around 0400 GMT, peeling off into two groups as they approached the ships.

The cruiser USS Port Royal, the destroyer USS Hopper, and the frigate USS Ingraham received a radio call threatening to blow them up and observed two of the speedboats drop floating boxes into the path of the Ingraham, officials said.

"They were called on radio, ships whistles were sounded -- those sorts of things -- to draw attention to the fact that their maneuvers were a cause of concern to the commanding officers," said Vice Admiral Kevin Cosgriff, commander of the US Fifth Fleet.

Cosgriff said the warnings went unheeded, and that the speedboats came less than 500 meters (yards) of the US boats of a couple of occasions. Other defense officials put the distance at a couple of hundred meters.

Ship commanders responded by increasing their vessels' "onboard readiness," but no shots were fired, the admiral said.
"In this case, the commanding officers did not believe they needed to fire warning shots," he said.

Cosgriff said the incident lasted less than 30 minutes, ending when the Iranian speedboats turned and headed back to Iranian waters.

He said the US ships were at least 15 miles from the nearest Iranian land, and thus outside its 12 mile territorial limit in international waters.

The US ships were clearly marked, it was daylight and there was decent visibility, he said.

The use of armed speedboats and aggressive maneuvering fit the operating profile of Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps, rather than the regular Iranian navy.

Cosgriff said US Navy ships frequently encounter Iranian regular navy and Republican Guard vessels in the Gulf, but there have been no incidents like this one recently, he said.

"This is more serious because of the aggregate of the actions, the coordinated movement of the ships of the boats, the threats of maneuvering, the more or less simultaneous radio communication, the dropping of objects," he told reporters via video link from his headquarters in Bahrain.

"These are in my mind unnecessarily provocative," he said.
US National Security Council spokesman Gordon Johndroe issued a statement urging Iran "to refrain from such provocative actions that could lead to a dangerous incident in the future."

At the State Department, spokesman Sean McCormack said there was wide support in the region for Washington to confront negative Iranian behavior.

"We do all of this with an eye to encouraging those reasonables within the Iranian decision-making structure to make a different set of decisions about Iran playing a constructive role not only in the region but globally," he said.

The Strait of Hormuz is a crucial choke point for world energy supplies, with about 20-25 percent of the world's crude oil supplies passing through from Gulf oil producers.

The US Fifth Fleet is based in Bahrain and US Navy officials say about three dozen US and coalition warships are in the region at any one time. The aircraft carrier USS Harry Truman currently is in the Gulf.

US Tells Iran to Back Down After Persian Gulf Skirmish
January 07, 2008 The Telegraph Damien McElroy
link to original article

The White House has told Iran that it risked provoking "a dangerous incident" after a weekend skirmish brought the two nations to the brink of conflict. US naval commanders were about to fire on a group of Iranian attack boats after being challenged at the mouth of the Gulf on Sunday, the Pentagon has disclosed.

Three US navy ships were targeted by Iran's Revolutionary Guard Navy as they entered the strait just after dawn.Five Iranian patrol boats came within 200 yards of the US vessels, issued threats over the radio and dropped mysterious objects into the water.

A transcript of the radio traffic revealed that the Iranians had warned the US commanders that an attack was underway: "I am coming at you. You will explode in a couple of minutes."

A "swarm" attack by small Iranian boats in the busy shipping lane is one of the prime security threats to the US navy presence.Its commanders were handing down an order to open fire when Iran navy patrol boats pulled back from international waters.

A Pentagon spokesman said the Iranians were "moments" away from coming under fire.

A statement issued by the US Navy Fifth Fleet said that the incident occurred at about 8am local time as the cruiser Port Royal, the destroyer Hopper and the frigate Ingraham were on their way into the Gulf and passing through the Strait of Hormuz.

Tensions in the Strait, a narrow waterway responsible for 40 per cent of the global trade in oil shipments, have escalated as Washington and Teheran swap accusations over Iran's nuclear ambitions. The White House demanded that Iran refrain from further provocation but Teheran played down the incident as an "ordinary occurrence".

The Pentagon said the skirmishes constituted a "significant" act of aggression at the chokepoint of global oil supplies.An official said: "Five small boats were acting in a very aggressive way, charging the ships, dropping boxes in the water in front of the ships and causing our ships to take evasive manoeuvres.

There were no injuries but there very well could have been."Iran's suspected pursuit of nuclear weapons has seen the US-led naval coalition, based at the home of the Fifth Fleet in Bahrain, dramatically increase its presence in the Gulf.

The Iranian response has been a series of dangerous exercises that have forced the coalition on to high alert.Operating procedures were overhauled last year after the Iranian navy seized 15 Royal Navy sailors and Royal Marines, who were protecting Iraqi oil facilities at the head in the Gulf.

The British patrol was accused of trespassing in Iranian territory and surrendered without a shot, in part because air cover was withdrawn before the Iranians pounced.

The 15 crew of the frigate Cornwall were taken to Teheran where President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad presided over a humiliating ceremony announcing their release as an Easter "gift" to the British people.

Steps taken to ensure the superiority of allied naval firepower along the international boundaries of the congested shipping lanes include deployment of modern attack helicopters plus rapid reaction US coastguard boats and additional marine guards.

Task Force 152, the US-led naval coalition, officially acts in support of the oil-rich but militarily-weak states. With President George W Bush due to visit the region this week, Iran's threat to world oil supplies will loom large on the agenda.

Dire Strait

The Strait of Hormuz is 34 miles across at its narrowest, but its navigable channel is just two miles wide, augmented by a two-mile buffer zone.

Analysts say current traffic carries 13.4 million barrels of crude oil per day, down from a peak of 17 million per day last year.The rate is expected to rise to 34 million barrels a day by 2020.An Iran-Iraq "Tanker War" in the mid-1980s reduced shipping by a quarter, forcing US intervention.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

The Shortened List of the Shrines of Kosovo and Metohija from 13th to 20th centuries


This list of Shrines is base on a study by Milan Ivanovic, Crkveni spomenici XIII-XX veka (Church Monuments from 13th to 20th century) from Zaduzbine Kosova (The Foundations of Kosovo), Prizren-Belgrade 1987, and other recent publications. dragan Jovanovic, researcher, compiled the major part of this list
Sites in alphabetic order


Wednesday, January 02, 2008


by Ion Mihai Pacepa

President Vladimir Putin has declared a new Cold War against the West.

I was one of the protagonists in the old Cold War. That war was primarily carried out by spies, in spite of the media prominence given to its nuclear confrontation. The atomic bomb of Soviet bloc espionage was the illegal officer, whose extraordinary value is still too little known outside the Kremlin.

The concept of the illegal officer was -and still is-unique to Russian intelligence, and it constituted an extremely closely guarded secret.

In 1964 I became a deputy chief of the Romanian espionage service, the DIE[2], but it was not until eight years later, when I became responsible for supervising Romania's illegal operations, that I understood how little I had known about this super-secret intelligence discipline until then.

Brigade U, as the illegal component was called, was so hush-hush that the location of its headquarters was known to only four outsiders (one of whom I had just become). Its officers never set foot inside any other Romanian intelligence organization. When assigned abroad, the illegal officers were not handled by the legal residencies but by other illegal officers run out of Brigade U headquarters. It was a state within a state, entirely self-contained.

President Putin's new Cold War has moved the illegal officer to the forefront again. The Russian daily Vzglyad (The View) reports that George Blake -an alleged Briton who now lives in Moscow- has published a new book, Transparent Walls. The forward of this book was signed by Russia's spy chief, Sergey Lebedev, himself.

'Despite the book being devoted to the past, it is about the present as well,

Lebedev writes. I am sure he is correct.

New information coming out of Moscow confirms to an informed eye what I have long suspected. Blake, a former senior officer of the British Secret Intelligence Service known to us, at the top of the bloc's intelligence community, as the 'spy of the century,' was in fact a Russian from start to finish. In other words, he was one of the KGB's own, an illegal intelligence officer dispatched to the U.K. during World War II, who caused more damage to the West than any other spy, ever.

That's why Blake was able to avoid the alcoholism, wife-swapping and depression suffered by the likes of Kim Philby, Donald Maclean and Guy Burgess after resettling in Moscow.

That's also why Blake, when SIS sent him in 1947 to a Russian language course run by Cambridge University for officers of the armed services, was able to read Anna Karenina fluently in less than three months[4] - a stunning achievement, as anyone who has studied Russian will agree, and one that gave him a strong boost up the ladder of SIS hierarchy.

Blake is history. His story still has gaps in it - as any real spy story has. But it illustrates what we can expect from Russia, as long as that country's government is being run by former KGB officers.

* * *

On October 22, 1966, a dramatic prison break occurred in England. George Blake, who was serving an unprecedented 42-year sentence for being a Soviet spy, was sprung from Wormwood Scrubs prison - and later turned up in Moscow.

For years Moscow denied any complicity in Blake's escape. But KGB defector Victor Cherkashin recently revealed that the daring rescue of George Blake had been engineered by the KGB - Cherkashin himself had once been assigned to draw up plans for the escape.

In fact, not only was Blake sprung from prison, but one of his rescuers, Sean Bourke, then joined him in Moscow. Bourke could not adjust to life there, however, so the KGB allowed him to go to Ireland, where the British had no jurisdiction.

Original KGB documents in the Mitrokhin Archive-described by the FBI as 'the most complete and extensive intelligence ever received from any source,' show that the KGB's foreign intelligence service, the PGU, also addled Bourke's memory. On instructions from General Aleksandr Sakharovsky, the head of the PGU, Bourke was given a drug 'designed to cause brain damage and to thus limit his potential usefulness if he fell into the hands of British intelligence.'

Bourke wrote an innocuous book about the escape and died not long thereafter.

Why did the PGU go to such unprecedented lengths to hide its hand in Blake's prison escape? Because it did not want to crack open a window even the slightest bit on the most secret of its secrets: the field of illegal operations.

The term 'illegal operations' has nothing to do with the idea of law-breaking. In Russian intelligence terminology, a legal officer is one who is assigned abroad to a Russian embassy or other official government representation. An illegal officer is one who assumes a non-Russian identity and appears abroad as someone who has no connection whatsoever with Russia. In other words, in any Western country a Russian illegal intelligence officer looks and acts just like your nextdoor neighbor.

A good illegal officer could inflict more damage on the West than could a hundred classical spies. Blake was an outstanding illegal officer. He compromised two of the most productive NATO intercept operations during the Cold War, the Berlin and the Vienna tunnels. Not long ago I visited the Allied Museum in Berlin, which has a large display on the joint SIS/CIA tunnel.

This very secret venture, codenamed Operation Gold, tapped into the Soviet military landlines linking East Berlin with Moscow. According to official data posted by the Museum, the tunnel allowed SIS/CIA to obtain colossally important military information from the Soviet bloc, and it cost Moscow billions to repair the damage.

Blake had informed the KGB a bout the tunnel from its inception, as he had taken the minutes at the first planning session, held in London in February 1954. In order to protect Blake, Moscow let the completed tunnel operation run for over a year until April 22, 1956, when Soviet signal troops, while inspecting some sagging cables, 'accidentally' stumbled onto the taps. SIS and the CIA attributed the loss of the operation to a technical failure.

Blake's value was, evidently, of overriding importance to the Soviets. Why?

At the same time, Blake was giving the KGB the names of what ended up being some 400 SIS and CIA agents.[11] The SIS chief himself estimated that fifteen years of work in Germany could have been destroyed,[12] and the judge who sentenced Blake in 1961 went so far as to say that he had undone most of the work of British intelligence since the end of World War II.[13]

* * *
Most people have not the faintest idea how an illegal officer looks and acts. No wonder.

When assigned abroad, an illegal simply blends into the environment. Rudolf Abel was a typical illegal officer. As a supposedly native New Yorker named Emil Goldfus (an identity he took from a dead baby), in the 1950s he set himself up in Brooklyn as an artist and photographer. In 1957, the FBI received a tip and arrested him for espionage, but he steadfastly refused to reveal his real identity or discuss his intelligence tasks during his interrogations and subsequent trial.

He did admit to being a Soviet citizen, giving the name of his deceased PGU colleague Rudolf Abel as his own true name (as a signal to the PGU that he was not talking), and eventually he was freed in a spy swap.

After 1962, when he was exchanged for U-2 pilot Francis Gary Powers, Abel started touring the KGB's satellite services to boost their morale. I met him once.

According to his story, Abel started his intelligence career in 1927 as an expert in radio-communications, and later he headed an NKVD unit for radio-deceptions. In 1934 Abel was sent as an illegal to London. There he persuaded the famous physicist Petr Kapitsa to visit the Soviet Union, where his passport was confiscated. Kapitsa had to remain in Moscow, where he was appointed head of a Soviet research institute built for him, and in 1978 he got the Nobel Prize, as Abel told us with paternal pride. Abel also claimed to have been in London again in 1935-1936, this time as an illegal code clerk for the spy ring known as the Cambridge Five.

Abel was introduced to us just as Colonel Abel, not under his real name. 'An illegal should die as an illegal,' Abel told us.
In 1972, I was taken to see Khrushchev's and Abel's graves in Moscow. Abel's looked monumental; Khrushchev's, at that time, miserable. For the PGU, the grave was the main way to honor an illegal. Abel's gravestone displayed two names: Rudolf Ivanovich Abel and Vilyam Genrikhovich Fisher.

Was Fisher his real name, I asked General Sakharovsky, a former chief intelligence adviser to Romania, who was just retiring after spending fourteen years as head of the PGU. 'Who knows,' he told me with a friendly wink.

The training of an illegal could take anywhere from three to eight years, including familiarization visits to Western countries and intensive language training, along with practice in clandestine communications techniques and equipment. By far the most important goal of all that training is to make an illegal feel comfortable in a new, Western identity, while at the same time to reinforce his ideological commitment to his own intelligence service.

After being dispatched abroad, an illegal is periodically brought home 'black'- that is, clandestinely, in another identity - to 'recharge his batteries,' meaning for political indoctrination.

* * *
It is almost impossible to identify an illegal officer who lives in the West under the legend of having been born there. I approved many such biographical legends. All were supported by Western birth certificates, school diplomas, pictures of alleged relatives, and even fake graves. In some important cases we also created ersatz living relatives in the West by using ideologically motivated people who received life-long secret annuities from us.

By definition, however, there are no legends without holes in them, and a knowledgeable eye can spot quite a few holes in Blake's biography.

It is characteristic of illegal officers to have allegedly been born in some country other than the one whose citizenship they claim, to avoid close background scrutiny.

Blake's biography follows that rule. He claims to have been born George Behar in Holland in 1922, as a British citizen. His mother was Dutch, his father a Turkish (or Spanish, or Egyptian) Jew who had received British citizenship for having fought with the British army. Blake claimed to have been born on 11 November - Armistice Day - a fact that so impressed his father that he insisted his child be named for King George V of England, whom the father admired.

Blake also said that his father had studied at the Sorbonne, and that his parents had hopped over to London for a civil marriage, so as not to offend the Dutch relatives who were against his mother's marrying a foreigner.[15] These are the kinds of sentimental flourishes the KGB (and my DIE) liked to add to an illegal's biography - but of course they could also be true.

Blake's early biography is replete with fanciful tales of people and places that are completely uncheckable, of family members who died early, and other murky stories.

His father, for instance, not only conveniently died when George was very young, but in fact George knew little about him, as they had shared no common language.[16] The Rotterdam neighborhood where George claims to have lived as a child was conveniently destroyed in the war.[17] That was another frequent element in an illegal's fictional biography after World War II, when so many European neighborhoods had been bombed flat.

Blake claims that, after the age of thirteen, he spent considerable time with his father's sister and her family in Cairo, where he learned English and French.[18] It just happened that when he later tried to locate his alleged relatives in Cairo, he learned they were all dead.[19]

When he first turned up on British shores, Blake also claimed to have a mother and two sisters living in London, who had escaped there from Holland. His alleged sisters, however, were born long after Blake and had learned about him through their mother, who was related by marriage to Henri Curiel, a founder of the Egyptian Communist Party.[20] (Curiel was an identified person, although nothing confirms his relationship to Blake's mother.)

This was a trick we often used, and the old widows were always grateful to us for the annuity we provided them in exchange. Blake's mother seemed to be happy in her role too, and she even moved to Moscow for a while, after Blake had been spirited there. In his autobiography he frequently talks with affection about his mother, who kept house for him when he was single, both in London and in Moscow.

A main concern for Russian illegals is to obtain Western citizenship without leaving any trace leading back to Russia. In consequence, a new illegal typically travels to several other countries first, under different identities. Only when his Russian connection is finally lost, is he ready to get citizenship in his final identity. Since an illegal bases this process on an initial document fabricated by the KGB, he should exchange it for a genuine one, not in the country of the issuing authority, but at one of its embassies abroad, where checks tend to be more casual - and from where he can escape in case the fabrication is spotted.

Blake ended up with a travel document issued by a British representative at the American consulate in Lyon, France during the war.[21]

He embellished his story with having had many identities - none checkable - while working with the wartime resistance in Holland, France and Spain. As he casually remarks, 'I have fairly often had to change my name in the course of my life.'[22]

The most important rule for an illegal who wants to remain in the good graces of his government, is never to admit to being an intelligence officer in possession of a fake biography. Blake played it by the book. In April 1961 he was brought back from Lebanon, where SIS had sent him to study Arabic, and was confronted with documentary evidence (provided by a source who had defected to the American CIA) that he had been supplying information to the KGB. For two days Blake denied everything. At the end of the third day, the SIS interrogator in desperation remarked:

'We know that you were working for the Soviets, but we understand why. While you were their prisoner in Korea, you were tortured and made to confess that you were a British intelligence officer. From then on you were blackmailed and had no choice but to cooperate with them.'

Blake indignantly denied that he had been tortured or blackmailed by the Soviets, claiming he had acted out of conviction, out of a belief in communism. He then proceeded to confess his treachery in an uninterrupted monologue -pausing only at one point to ask: 'Am I boring you?'[23]

This is Blake's confession, which his sympathetic interrogators so readily believed. In 1948 SIS sent him to South Korea, assigned as the only SIS officer at the British legation in Seoul. In 1950 the North Koreans captured the legation, took all the British employees prisoner, and moved them to North Korea.

There Blake read Marx's Das Kapital and other books in Russian that had been thoughtfully supplied to the prisoners by the Soviet embassy. Blake claims that as a result he was won over to communism, secretly asked to meet with a Soviet officer, and in 1951 volunteered to cooperate with the Soviet intelligence service.[24] The SIS interrogators congratulated themselves on having made Blake confess, because without his confession the case would not have stood up in court.[25]

Blake confession was faked. According to original KGB documents found in the Mitrokhin Archive, Blake had the PGU operational codename 'DIOMID.'[26] The PGU and its predecessors, particularly in the early years, did assign cryptonyms directly related to an agent's life. The fact that Blake was called DIOMID strongly indicates that he did not start cooperating with the PGU in 1951 while being held prisoner in North Korea, but rather that his assignment as an illegal began with his enlistment in the British navy in 1943 and almost immediate assignment to the training cruiser Diomede and transfer shortly thereafter to SIS.[27]

Blake's calculated confession to SIS allowed him to keep his illegal status a secret. He understood that SIS had enough evidence to send him to prison, but if his status as a Soviet illegal were not revealed, he would eventually be released, brought to Moscow, and welcomed with honor and a pension.
George de Mohrenschildt, whom I identify in my latest book as a KGB illegal associated with President Kennedy's assassin Lee Harvey Oswald, knew he would be never taken back to Moscow - that would have recognized that the KGB had been involved in the assassination.

De Mohrenschildt therefore committed suicide when he realized he might be forced to reveal his status as a KGB illegal officer.[28]

Loyalty to Soviet communism was another rule imposed on illegal officers who wanted to preserve Moscow's support. De Mohrenschildt, who posed as a European American aristocrat who had dedicated his life to fighting communism, left a post-mortem ode to his commander-in-chief, Nikita Khrushchev: 'He is gone now. God bless his Bible-quoting personality. His sudden bursts of anger and beating on the table with his shoe are all gone and belong to history. Millions of Russians miss him.'[29]

Blake followed the loyalty rule as well. In all of his later statements, he has consistently shown himself a convinced communist. Even before his trial in 1961, when his counsel asked if he could say in his address to the judge that Blake was deeply sorry for all he had done, as that might help his case,

Blake refused, saying it was not only untrue but also undignified.[30] Regarding the perfunctory security checks made on him during the war, he once told an interviewer:
'They didn't realize that, throughout the war, my loyalty was to the anti-Nazi cause, not to Britain.'[31]

He also has denied being a traitor, insisting he never felt British: 'To betray, you first have to belong. I never belonged.'[32] In his autobiography - undoubtedly written with generous input from the KGB - he calls communism the highest form of society and frequently expresses the appeal to him of a society that abolishes class distinctions.[33]

The illegal officers assigned abroad would have learned from Blake's example that loyalty to Moscow pays off in the end, with a good pension and a happy and respected life in Moscow.

* * *

Since World War II most illegal officers have been loners, or (truly or ostensibly) married couples, but in important countries the Soviet bloc established illegal residencies. These were mini-intelligence stations, concealed in private houses and capable of carrying on intelligence operations in case of war, when the embassies and legal residencies would be shut down, and in peacetime handling extremely sensitive agents.

An illegal residency consists of an illegal resident, usually an illegal support officer or team for handling secret communications with Moscow, perhaps a couple of other illegal officers, and a few agents considered too sensitive to be handled by the legal residency.

There is strong, though circumstantial, evidence that Blake was handled by such an illegal station. In his autobiography he writes that in Moscow he became good friends with Gordon Lonsdale, whom he allegedly first met when they were both serving time in Wormwood Scrubs prison in the early 1960s. Lonsdale, whom the Soviets acknowledged as their PGU officer Konon Molody, had been freed in a spy swap in 1964.

(The circumstances of his arrest had provided documentary proof that he was a PGU illegal.) About him Blake writes:
'Lonsdale had been a so-called 'illegal resident.' I have always had the greatest respect and admiration for this class of intelligence officer. To my mind there is no higher... Lonsdale was a perfect example of what an 'illegal resident' should be.'
And he elaborates:

'Only an intelligence service which works for a great cause can ask such a sacrifice from its officers. That is why, as far as I know, at any rate in peace time, only the Soviet intelligence service has 'illegal residents.''[34]

Why should the British citizen George Blake, even if he had worked for SIS, know so much about PGU illegal residents? I postulate that Blake had been the express reason for the PGU's establishment of its first postwar illegal residency in London.

That was a very big deal, but Blake was a very big case. After his return from Korea in 1953, Blake held important positions at SIS headquarters, and the PGU's illegal component surely wanted to keep in close touch with him and provide a rapid way for him to send PGU headquarters his anticipated voluminous intelligence on SIS operations.

Here are the facts. The first members of Molody's illegal residency to arrive in London were the illegal agents Morris and Lona Cohen, whose identities had earlier been compromised in the United States. (The Cohens had both been born in the U.S., making them KGB agents rather than officers, but otherwise their careers paralleled those of illegal officers.)

They were scheduled to be sent to Japan, but suddenly they were assigned as the communications support team for the new London illegal residency.

In May 1954 they traveled to Paris to pick up new identities as Peter and Helen Kroger, also meeting Molody there. Morris once claimed he and his wife had selected Dutch names because they were originally scheduled for assignment to South Africa.[35]

I note, however, that Blake's alleged Dutch background could have given him a reason for knowing the Krogers, should they have needed a public excuse for meeting in person. In London, the Cohens, now Krogers, rented a house in a secluded area and set themselves up in the antiquarian book business. In fact they were the communications unit for the illegal residency's encoded radio, microdot and secret writing contact with Moscow. It was also in 1954 that Molody went to Canada to establish his identity as the Canadian Gordon Lonsdale.

In March 1955 Lonsdale arrived in London and established himself in the vending machines business.[36] Over the next six years he is known to have handled essentially only two agents, Harry Houghton and his girlfriend Ethel Gee, both of whom provided classified information on submarine warfare.[37]

The complicated process of establishing an illegal residency does not seem an efficient way for the PGU to have handled two normal cases that surely could have been run out of the legal residency. (Molody also briefly handled a long-time London legal residency agent, but after two months she was turned back over to the legal residency.[38] That was in early 1959, just when Blake returned from a tour of several years in West Berlin.)

The defector Oleg Gordievsky tells us that Molody was (as of 1985) the only postwar illegal officer whose portrait was hanging in the Memory Room of the PGU.[39] Molody's handling of Houghton and his girlfriend, two valuable but routine agents, would not have earned him such a great honor.

But his handling of Blake certainly would have. That would also explain why Blake expressed 'genuine joy' over accidentally running into Morris Cohen in Moscow one day in 1971. According to the Mitrokhin Archive, the two exchanged telephone numbers and agreed to meet, but then KGB headquarters discouraged them individually, and each found a reason to make excuses to the other, as confirmed by their bugged telephones. They never met again.[40]

Although the Cohens and Blake had briefly met in Wormwood Scrubs prison in the U.K., the KGB clearly did not want them to be seen as close friends, as that might have confirmed that they were both members of Molody's illegal residency. (Blake does not even mention the Cohens/Krogers in his autobiography.)

In 1959 the CIA told SIS that it had information about two Soviet agents operating in Britain, one working in naval research and one in SIS. By March 1960, British Security Service officers had sufficient information to identify Harry Houghton (and his girlfriend Ethel Gee), whom they followed to identify Lonsdale (Molody), who in turn led them to the Krogers (Cohens), but the British cleverly let the case run, hoping to learn more. In August, Molody was overheard telling Houghton that there would be no monthly meeting in September as he was visiting the U.S. (actually Moscow), but he hoped to be back for their October meeting.

Molody was away from 27 August to 17 October. While he was gone, MI5 was able to copy his code pads and decipher his radio traffic, positively identifying him as a KGB illegal. The traffic was monitored for two months after Molody's return from Moscow, but it consisted only of routine instructions for handling 'SHAH' (Houghton) and messages from Molody's family in Moscow.

The Government Communications Headquarters (the British equivalent of NSA) then identified a similar radio traffic link, containing about twice the volume, which had run from ca. 1955 to August 1960, and then abruptly stopped.[41] In early September 1960 Blake left London to study Arabic at a school in Lebanon, and I suggest that the decrease in Molody's radio traffic with KGB headquarters may have been related to Blake's new assignment and Molody's own future without him.

The future took care of itself, with the arrest of Molody and the Cohens in January and Blake in April 1961. Taken together, this group, who I am convinced formed one illegal residency, inflicted enormous, unprecedented damage on the West.
* * *

On September 11, 2002, a select cluster of former senior KGB officers gathered at the KGB museum, a dreary gray building behind the Lubyanka. They had not congregated to sympathize with us on the anniversary of our national tragedy, but to celebrate the 125th birthday of Feliks Dzerzhinsky[42]-the man who created one of the most criminal institutions in contemporary history.

George Blake, whose smiling image is prominently displayed in the museum, was among them. His KGB-inspired autobiographical book was also prominently displayed. In it Blake states out loud, for all illegal officers hiding around the world to hear, that he never disclosed that he was an illegal officer, and that in recognition of his loyalty, the Soviet government rewarded him with a marvelous life in Moscow and with many decorations, beginning with the Order of Lenin - which Philby once happily compared to a British knighthood when he got his, although he was miffed to receive it a year later than Blake.[43]

The fact that Blake's book also lists among his rewards the Military Order of the Red Banner and the Military Order of Merit[44] - decorations that only a military officer could receive - attests that the KGB displayed this book for the primary benefit of its illegal officers spread around the world.

That also confirms Blake's own status as an illegal officer, as all PGU officers, both legal and illegal, had military rank.
Today there are some 6,000 former KGB officers running Russia's federal and local governments, and illegal officers are en vogue more than ever before. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Canada has arrested and deported at least three illegal officers working for the SVR (the new name of the PGU).

Two were caught in 1996, and one in 2006. The first two, documented as Ian Mackenzie Lambert and Laurie Brodie, used the stolen identities of dead Canadian children. The third, documented as Paul William Hampel, used the identity of a living Canadian.[45]

Without explanation, the latest Wikipedia entry on Blake, introduced a few weeks ago, suddenly describes him as a 'colonel of foreign intelligence.' Evidently, Moscow wanted its illegals abroad to hear from an independent source as well that Blake is now highly honored in Moscow.

Russian foreign intelligence has always believed in standardizing its operations, as we in the Soviet satellite services were constantly taught. The phenomenal success of George Blake ensures that the traditionally Russian pattern of illegal operations will be repeated over and over in the future. Nothing succeeds like success.

Lt. Gen. Pacepa is the highest-ranking intelligence official ever to have defected from the Soviet bloc. His newest book is Programmed to Kill: Lee Harvey Oswald, the Soviet KGB, and the Kennedy Assassination.