back to ratville times | rat haus | Index | Search | tree

( ASCII text format )

A nice piece of work (below). Note the choice words quoted from CIA agency spokesman Tom Crispell in the Guardian Unlimited article (at bottom):
``We think that it's a good idea to better inform the public on the true mission of the CIA and intelligence gathering. Most of what's out there is Hollywood's perception and what you read in novels. The vast majority is not true,'' agency spokesman Tom Crispell said. ``I think it will give individuals a more realistic understanding of what the intelligence business is all about.''
AS IF the Central Intelligence Agency is dedicated to giving "individuals a more realistic understanding of what the intelligence business is all about." Isn't that nice. Contrast this with Colonel L. Fletcher Prouty's experiential understanding of the CIA:
To really understand CIA, you have to remember that perhaps its best cover story is that it's an intelligence organization. It doesn't do much intelligence. Intelligence is gathered by other assets throughout the Government, also. The Agency has quite a bit; but that isn't why they were created. Covert operations is their big money deal. You divide that up into the mechanical and electronic things like U-2s, and SR-71s and the satellites and all that -- photographs and that whole business. That's the technical side of the agency. Then you get into this other part of covert operations where you're dealing with people -- spies and agents and the like. That's a business that is almost everywhere. These people are the only ones doing covert work. It's a small group of specialists.
Understanding Special Operations, p.153.
Here we have Mister Crispell either practicing intentional deception by once again re-emphasizing the primary cover story of the CIA's purpose -- to gather intelligence -- or else he himself is ignorant and devoid of a "realistic understanding" of what "the true mission of the CIA" is. Again, Colonel Prouty:
[W]hen Congress wrote the language of this legislation for the CIA -- and I printed this literally in the book so that anyone who wants to read it will see exactly what the law says[1] -- it said that the CIA is created to coordinate the intelligence of the rest of the government. That was why it was created. With that as a primary duty of CIA, then the other little tasks and things they were supposed to do come forward and it is a clearer explanation -- in fact, it is the only explanation when it is put that way. There was not a single word, for example, in the law that said that the CIA should collect intelligence. There wasn't a single word in the law that said the CIA should get involved in covert operations, and this is the same law that exists today by the way. We haven't changed it. . . .
        The single primary character of the CIA is Mr. Dulles. There's no question about it, it was his agency. Nobody else has left any mark like his. But you need to see that background to understand what the passage of the National Security Act really meant in 1947. What it says in law is what creates many of these controversies about intelligence today. Because there still is no law that says that the CIA is an intelligence organization -- it says that it is a coordinating agency. There is no law that says it is a covert operations agency. . . .
        There is no law, there is no structure, for covert operations. The Government didn't confront that in 1947 when they wrote the law. There has been no revision of the law to accommodate that.
Ibid, pp.93-94, 99, 130.

Spy Museum Coming to Washington D.C.
Stealing History Through "National Security"

Date: Sat, 03 Feb 2001
From: John Judge
Subject: The Spy Museum in DC

Mark Plotkin and Sam Smith - FYI
Here is the piece about the spy museum I mentioned. Sorry I could not get on the air about it. An earlier Washington Post piece quoted Maltz, a former NSA spy, as saying it would counter the public image given the agency by Oliver Stone, that it trained assassins. These intelligence agencies and covert operations since the end of WWII have effectively stolen our history through "national security", have been responsible for the deaths of 10 million or more people in wars and covert operations they have fostered around the world, and have consistently violated human and legal rights of citizens here and abroad. It is reprehensible that the city of Washington DC is floating $6.9 million in loans to help a project that already has $28 million behind it (probably from the intelligence agencies and their fronts). DC has so much money to spare?

John Judge
Box 772
Washington, DC 20044
Real Democracy

Breaking the CODE
Spy Museum Founders Stake Out Territory Downtown
Call it the ultimate in post-Cold War business moves.

Milton Maltz, a National Security Agency spook turned media mogul, is staging yet another clandestine operation. In conjunction with experts from the KGB, CIA and academia, the CEO of the Cleveland, OH-based Malrite Company laid out his plans to build a brand-new $28-million International Spy Museum, which will open downtown next spring. In December, the DC City Council announced that it endorsed the project and offered up its support -- in the form of $6.9 million in city loans. (Malrite is also the force behind the $90-million Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland.)
        The company, an education-focused unit of broadcasting behemoth Malrite Communications, is funding the construction of the 58,000-square-foot undercover paraphernalia warehouse here in Washington, because, it seems, this is the espionage capital of the world. "We've got the FBI, the CIA, the NSA and the OSS headquartered here," says Peter Spurney, project principal and vice president of operations at Malrite.
        It might even wind up being a profitable venture: Unlike other museums in the District, this one plans to charge around $8 for admission; it will also hold within its walls a restaurant, cafe, museum shop, a 5,000-square-foot event space and a virtual reality game called "Spy Adventure." Spurney says the museum is projected to do about $17 million in annual revenue.
        Dennis Barrie, Malrite's president, says that among the items he's procured so far are some spy cameras, an Enigma machine and a shortwave radio used by spies in World War II to communicate from behind enemy lines. Barrie says that the museum's biggest score so far (found on eBay) is a letter written in 1908 by the famous Dutch spy Mata Hari, who was executed in 1917 by a French firing squad.

Spy Museum Shows Off Espionage Tools
Guardian Unlimited
Monday January 15, 2001

CLEVELAND (AP) - The secret is out: Some of James Bond's biggest fans were KGB agents.

But the Soviets weren't interested in how the fictional British spy liked his martinis or seduced femme fatales. The KGB thought Bond's goofy weapons were real and tried to keep pace by working on new gadgets like a lipstick gun.

That's just one secret of the cloak-and-dagger trade that a Cleveland company is revealing as it enters the hush-hush world of espionage by opening the International Spy Museum in Washington in February 2002.

The museum will cost $29 million and showcase thousands of years espionage and international trickery, dating back to the Trojan horse.

``The real stories are more interesting than fiction,'' said Dennis Barrie, president of Malrite Co., which focuses on starting new museums.

Barrie, a former Smithsonian curator, was at the center of a controversy in 1990 when the Contemporary Arts Center in Cincinnati opened an exhibit by photographer Robert Mapplethorpe that included homoerotic shots. Prosecutors brought obscenity charges against the center and Barrie, but a jury acquitted them.

Malrite founder Milton Maltz, who was on a board of directors that helped bring the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum to Cleveland, came up with the idea for the for-profit spy museum.

Maltz worked for the National Security Agency while in the Navy. While he described his intelligence work as ``pretty mundane,'' Maltz said he has always been fascinated by the espionage world. The popularity of history-based TV shows and greater willingness by spy agencies to reveal secrets of the trade helped convince him that a museum would sell.

Barrie anticipates the museum will draw 500,000 visitors the first year.

``The world is mesmerized by spying. We've had even more interest in the subject than we anticipated,'' Maltz said.

Even the Central Intelligence Agency has nice things to say about the museum, though it cannot endorse commercial projects.

``We think that it's a good idea to better inform the public on the true mission of the CIA and intelligence gathering. Most of what's out there is Hollywood's perception and what you read in novels. The vast majority is not true,'' agency spokesman Tom Crispell said. ``I think it will give individuals a more realistic understanding of what the intelligence business is all about.''

Many ideas for the museum came from an advisory board of historians and former spies with the FBI, CIA and KGB. A couple of years ago, the ex-spies gathered to swap stories, Maltz said.

``Sometimes they would say, `Is it still classified?' One side would tell their story and the other side's story would be different,'' Maltz said. ``It was fabulous because it was spy versus spy.''

Malrite has been collecting artifacts for the museum by buying items on the Internet and asking former agents for souvenirs from their careers.

Some of the material will come from H. Keith Melton, a historian who has a 6,000-piece collection of spy material. About 500 of Melton's items are at the CIA's headquarters, which has a small museum for employees and invited guests.

The new museum's prized possession is an Enigma machine used by the Nazis to encrypt top-secret messages.

Among the other attractions will be a ``spy school,'' where visitors can learn how to bug a room, try on disguises and use spy cameras. Another exhibit will recreate the Berlin tunnel where agents eavesdropped on the Russians during the Cold War, while yet another will be a World War II codebreaking room where visitors will see the role espionage played in helping the D-Day invasion.

While the museum will address the careers of real-life spies such as Mata Hari and Julia Child (she did intelligence work in Asia during World War II), there will also be a nod to Bond and his colleagues from the world of movies and TV. That's because the real world influenced the entertainment industry and vice versa.

Barrie said the director of the CIA in the 1960s often watched TV's ``Mission Impossible.'' He said that the day after the week's episode, the director would call those in charge of coming up with spying gadgets and tactics and ask, ``Can we do that?''

back to ratville | rat haus | Index | Search | tree