Reprinted from NewsMax.com
More Cuban Spies Lurking In U.S.
Kenneth R. Timmerman
Saturday, May 19, 2007
than five years after Defense Intelligence Agency analyst Ana Belen
Montes pled guilty to charges of spying for Cuba, more Cuban spies are
lurking inside the U.S. government, possibly even among top
policy-makers, the Defense Intelligence Agency's top counter-spy and
other former intelligence officers revealed on Wednesday.
there more Cuban spies out there? I believe so," said Scott Carmichael,
the DIA counter-spy who led the investigation that led to Montes's
arrest on Sept. 20, 2001. "The Cuban intelligence service is one of the
best in the world."
recently published a book, True Believer, about Montes's sixteen year
career as a top spy for Cuba, and his efforts to track her down. The
DIA spent two and a half years reviewing his manuscript before they
would allow him to submit it for publication, Carmichael said.
Cuban government has eyes and ears everywhere," he told an audience at
the American Enterprise Institute in Washington. "If it was that easy
to recruit Ana Montes, then we have to assume they have recruited
said his experience looking for Cuban spies within the DIA led him to
believe that Cuba today has "a stable of agents" within the U.S.
intelligence community and elsewhere in government. "The danger is that
the information [they gather] will be shared with Iran or wherever our
forces are today," he added.
called Montes the "Queen of Cuba" because of her unprecedented
penetration of the U.S. intelligence community and her impact on U.S.
government policy toward Cuba.
only did she have access to the most secret, compartmented intelligence
programs aimed at Castro and his regime. But as the intelligence
community's top Cuba analyst, Montes helped to craft virtually every
major classified analysis on Cuba, including key National Intelligence
Montes's guidance, the Cuba NIE's instructed policy-makers that
Castro's regime posed no threat to the United States and was not
seeking to extend its influence to other countries in the Western
also played a decisive role in suppressing intelligence obtained from
Cuban sources in 1994 that led other analysts to conclude that Castro
was developing biological weapons.
"Ana objected so strongly to the draft that she actually spiked it. That's the kind of power she had," Carmichael said.
more astonishing is the fact that not a single product authored or
influenced by Montes has been pulled back by the intelligence community.
products produced by tainted sources is a common practice within the
intelligence community after it conducts a damage assessment. It
happened after Russian spies Aldrich Ames and Robert Hansen were
caught, and it happened on a more limited basis after an Iraqi source
known as CURVEBALL, who was controlled by German intelligence, was
later found to be psychologically unstable.
the U.S. intelligence community continues to base essential judgments
on Cuba on products written by convicted Cuban spy Ana Belen Montes,
despite a sweeping damage assessment carried out in the months
following her arrest and sentencing.
"I don't believe that any of her products have been pulled," Carmichael said.
exchange for her cooperation, federal prosecutors agreed to give Montes
a 25-year sentence, instead of life without parole. She is currently
serving time in a federal penitentiary near Fort Worth, Texas.
reason Montes's products continue to circulate in Congress and the
White House is because of a "pro-Cuban support network of sympathizers
and apologists," said former DIA officer Paul Crespo, now with the
Foundation for the Defense of Democracies.
said there was a "huge infrastructure of Castro sympathizers"
throughout the intelligence community and across government.
agents of influence have infiltrated the U.S. Army War College, the
Navy War College," as well as the former Immigration and Naturalization
Service, now known as Immigration and Customs Enforcement, he said.
Miami, Crespo said they had "penetrated the Miami Herald" and local
Spanish-language newspapers, by placing former Cuban government
reporters in key jobs.
"These support networks make it a lot harder to differentiate between actual spies and the useful idiots," he said.
Montes was "on a first name basis" with the National Intelligence
Officer for Latin America, Fulton Armstrong," Carmichael and others
and Armstrong continued to confide by phone even as Carmichael and his
investigative team were closing the noose around Ana Montes.
wouldn't be surprised if Fulton Armstrong had something to do with
Ana's products not being pulled," said Norman Bailey, who until March
2007 was the Issue Manager for Cuba/Venezuela in the Office of the
Director of National Intelligence.
Armstrong was a vigorous supporter of Castro within the intelligence community, Bailey, Carmichael and Crespo said.
Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs, Roger
Noriega, added that Fulton Armstrong's "advocacy" on behalf of Castro
was so astonishing that Noriega banned him from his office.
didn't question his patriotism. I questioned his judgment," Noriega
said. "So I told my assistant that I didn't want to see a single scrap
of paper he was involved in. I was not interested in a person with such
a profound lack of judgment."
Armstrong testified against John Bolton in April 2005 during the Senate
Foreign Relations committee confirmation hearing for Bolton to become
the Permanent U.S. representative to the United nations.
"would downplay anything that was derogatory to Castro, Venezuela, or
to the FARC," Noriega said, referring to the Cuban—sponsored
Revolutionary Armed Forces of Columbia.
"John Bolton would be ambassador to the United Nations today if not for Fulton Armstrong," he added.
of the accusations made by Sen. Christopher Dodd and his top staffer,
Janice O'Connell, was that Bolton had "pressured" Fulton Armstrong over
intelligence relating to Cuba's suspected biological weapons program.
and O'Connell had tried to suppress intelligence information that Cuba
was pursuing a clandestine biological weapons program, but Bolton
sought to declassify that information for use in a speech at the
Heritage Foundation in 2002.
Armstrong and O'Connell continued to defend Ana Montes in closed-door
sessions with top policy-makers, even after she was arrested by the
FBI, several former intelligence officers said.
Bailey was summarily fired without explanation in March 2007 by the
incoming Director of National Intelligence. Gen. Mike McConnell, after
asking too many questions about Cuba and the continued use of the
National Intelligence Estimates that Ana Montes had authored before her
counter-intelligence is entirely convinced there are several other
high-level Cuban agents, not just in the intelligence community, but in
the policy community," Bailey said. "You can expect startling
revelations in the next few years."
said that the Cubans were following the Soviet model in recruiting
senior policy-makers, not just intelligence officers. He cited Cold War
spies Alger Hiss, who was a top-ranked State Department official, and
Harry Dexter White, a top Treasury Department official under FDR who
was instrumental in creating the International Monetary Fund and the
Cuba and other enemies of America, being able to influence policy and
"elite" opinion-makers "is equally important, possibly even more
important, than recruiting spies with access to intelligence
information," he said.
Roger Noriega, a former staffer of Sen. Jesse Helms whom Secretary of
State Condoleeza Rice replaced in October 2005 with career diplomat,
Tom Shannon, the Montes arrest signified a much deeper Cuban
"The other shoe has not dropped on this story," Noriega said.
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