News you may have missed #482

  • Kissinger wants US spy for Israel freed. Former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger is urging President Barack Obama to release Jonathan Pollard, an American convicted of spying on the US for Israel 24 years ago. He has sent Obama a letter, in which he writes “I believe justice would be served by commuting” Pollard’s life sentence.
  • MI5 short of surveillance officers says minister. A senior British official has revealed MI5 does not have enough spies to allow it to increase its counterintelligence surveillance, as per government plans. Security Minister Baroness Pauline Neville-Jones said the Security Service needed to recruit and train more surveillance officers.
  • US spy agencies lack fluent bilingual speakers. Many Americans don’t learn a second or a third language from birth, let alone a language that the CIA or US Foreign Service might want. The situation has forced US government agencies to learn how to cultivate the most talented second-language speakers from among college students with little to no other-language expertise.

Scotland Yard urged to drop advisor with terrorist ties

Harrath

Harrath

For four years, the Scotland Yard, headquarters of the London Metropolitan Police Service, has employed Mohamed Ali Harrath as an “anti-terrorism advisor” while funding his London-based Muslim television station with tens of thousands of pounds. Last week The London Times discovered that Harrath is wanted by the Tunisian authorities and by Interpol “because of his links to an alleged terror organization”. The organization, known as the Tunisian Islamic Front (FIT), is said to advocate “an Islamic state by means of armed revolutionary violence”. The Tunisian government is not known for its democratic credentials, but British intelligence organizations seem to agree with its assessment of FIT. In 2003 an MI5 witness implicated “FIT [in] terrorism activities in France” before Britain’s Special Immigration Appeals Commission. Read more of this post