Last week, the Central Intelligence Agency uncharacteristically informed its spies of the details and an exact number of spies that the CIA has lost. The document that was sent to CIA operatives broke down several issues in recruiting new informants, such as sub-par tradecraft, not paying attention to potential risks, and underestimating the counterintelligence of the United States’ rivals.
The report claimed China, Russia, Iran, and Pakistan have become increasingly adept at identifying and taking out America’s spies. In some cases, spies have been turned into double agents but the document did not disclose how many informants have been compromised in such a manner.
The CIA also admitted its classified communications system had been breached and exposed its spy networks in China and Iran. The government agency believes CIA moles provided the information to foreign territories and led to arrests and deaths of informants.
For example, two former intelligence officers (pictured above) are accused of providing information to rival countries in separate cases. Former CIA case agent Jerry Chun Shing Lee was sentenced to 19 years in prison after he pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit espionage in November 2019. Lee was accused of accepting over $840,000 from Chinese Intelligence officers, over a three-year period, to provide the names of American spies – Lee has denied that claim.
In addition, Monica Witt was a former Air Force intelligence officer who was indicted for allegedly giving Iran national defense information. Prosecutors claim she delivered the classified information after defecting to Iran in 2013.
Source: The New York Times