12.28.2008

The CIA and Cultural Property

The CIA seem to like using culture and archaeology as 'covers':
Philip Agee’s inaugural appearance in a major newspaper was on March 7, 1968. The article was datelined Mexico City, and Agee, identified as a U.S. Embassy official attached to the Olympic Games section, was describing a cultural program “of art treasures, performing artists and folklore and scientific exhibits.” The next time Agee showed up in the papers, it was 1974, and he was about to publish “Inside the Company: CIA Diary,” very much against the wishes of his actual former employer ...
It's annoying, as it means that half the field get accused of being CIA at some point or another. Actually, it's more than annoying - it is by far the best way to get me to hit the roof. The idiots you find spreading those sorts of rumors don't realize how dangerous they can be. A good case would be German archaeologist Susanne Osthoff, who was kidnapped in Iraq in 2005. Accusations, never proven, of spying were made against her. Now other archaeologists working in war zones worry about similar problems.

The people making the accusations also don't seem to realize that it's insulting to the good men and women of the CIA who work hard trying to keep the world safe. Movies like James Bond and Matthew Bourne might make the CIA look exciting, but it's not; apparently lots of paperwork is involved before being able to do even the most minor thing, and blowing up cars is highly discouraged.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I do not moderate comments, but I remove spam, overt self-promotion ("read [link] my much better post on this") and what I consider hate speech (racism, homophobia etc).

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.