News you may have missed #788

U-2 surveillance aircraftBy IAN ALLEN | intelNews.org |
►►US spy planes violated Israeli airspace in 1950s. American U-2 espionage planes repeatedly entered Israeli airspace in the 1950s for a series of secret spy missions, according to new information to be published by the Israel Air Force magazine next week, bringing to an end a decades-long mystery. At the time, Israel’s defense establishment was baffled by the entrance of high-flying crafts. For years, officials in IAF command disagreed on the identity of the mystery crafts, with some claiming that they were British Vickers-Valiants, and others saying they were American Vought F-8 Crusader planes, that had been stationed on a US aircraft carrier. According to documents to be published next week, it was the USSR that aided Israeli officials to expose the identity of the mystery planes, after a US U-2 espionage plane was shot down over Soviet soil.
►►US guard pleads guilty to espionage. A civilian guard at a new US consulate in China pleaded guilty on Thursday to attempting to sell Chinese security officials photographs and access to the compound so they could plant listening devices. According to a court proffer, Bryan Underwood had lost a significant amount of money in the stock market and hoped to make between $3 million and $5 million by supplying classified photos and information to China’s Ministry of State Security. Underwood, 32, appeared in federal court in Washington and pleaded guilty to one count of attempting to communicate national defense information to a foreign government.
►►CIA torture probe ends without any charges. The US Department of Justice has ended its investigation into the CIA’s interrogation program for terror detainees, without bringing charges. Attorney General Eric Holder said there was not enough evidence to “sustain a conviction beyond a reasonable doubt”. Jameel Jaffer, deputy legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union, said the investigation’s conclusions were a “nothing short of a scandal”. But CIA officials welcomed the decision. CIA Director David Petraeus thanked his staff for co-operating with the investigation. “As intelligence officers, our inclination is to look ahead to the challenges of the future rather than backwards at those of the past”, he said. No surprises here, surely.

News you may have missed #600 (China edition)

Lo Hsien-che

Lo Hsien-che

►►Chinese spy stirs unease in Taiwan military. Excellent, well-researched piece by The Washington Post about Lo Hsien-che, a Major General in the Taiwanese military, who earlier this year was convicted in what has been described as Taiwan’s biggest spy scandal in over 50 years. Lo appears to have fallen victim to a carefully planned Chinese honey-trap operation, involving a “tall, beautiful and chic” Chinese female operative, who held an Australian passport.
►►US consulate guard accused of trying to spy for China. Bryan Underwood, a former contract security guard at a US consulate under construction in southern China’s largest city, Guangzhou, was charged Wednesday with trying to pass defense secrets about the site to Chinese intelligence officials. Scheduled for completion next year, the consulate is the only one under construction in the world’s most populous nation.
►►Taiwan professor detained for spying for China. Wu Chang-yu, of Taiwan’s Central Police University, was detained Friday for allegedly providing data on visiting Chinese activists to Beijing. Taiwan’s United Daily News quoted unidentified sources as saying Wu was recruited during a recent visit to China.