The Russian Spy Ring of 2010

Posted: September 15, 2011 in Illegal Residencies, Russian Spy Ring 2010
Tags: , , , ,

Anya Chapman, Russian spy.

If I’d met her, I might’ve turned over every damn state secret I could get my hands on! Guess that’s why they call these women femme fatales.

There’s something that involves the spy ring Ms. Chapman was part of that has always bothered me; it’s something the mainstream media missed.

That ring of S.V.R. (KGB) officers composed what’s called an “illegal residency”. In this case, illegal has nothing to do with laws or statutes. Russian intelligence officers, like my old buddy  Mikhail Katkov, are assigned to legal residencies usually attached to the United Nations, the Russian Consulate, or perhaps a trade delegation. The main distinction between legal and illegal officers is diplomatic status. Illegals don’t have any; if they get caught engaging spy activities they have no immunity from prosecution.

It takes many years and many rubles to establish an illegal residency, and to train its cadre of officers; therefore, why would they be tasked to perform duties a legal residency is more than capable of handling?

Illegals serve as a backup for legal residencies, and should be used only in an emergency; i.e. like a break in diplomatic relations  between Russia and the host nation. After all the legal residencies have been closed down and their officers shipped back to Moscow, that’s when the illegals are activated.

In the summer of 2010, the press gleefully reported that Anya’s spy ring accomplished next to nothing. And thus they missed a critical point:  illegals are under deep cover and are only used when absolutely necessary. They can, and often are, dormant for many years.

Which raises some intriguing questions: Are relations between Russian and the United States more strained than the public has been led to believe? Does Russia think that one day there might be a break in diplomatic relations with the U.S.? How many more illegals are out there?

Also, to shut down an illegal residency is quite a coup. Congrats to the FBI.


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