Spy & Counterspy
By GEORGE F. KENNAN
It is my conviction, based on some 70 years of experience, first as a
Government official and then in the past 45 years as a historian, that the
need by our government for secret intelligence about affairs elsewhere in
the world has been vastly overrated. I would say that something upward of
percent of what we need to know could be very well obtained by the careful
and competent study of perfectly legitimate sources of information open and
available to us in the rich library and archival holdings of this country.
Much of the remainder, if it could not be found here (and there is very
little of it that could not), could easily be nonsecretively elicited from
similar sources abroad.
In Russia, in Stalin's time and partly thereafter, the almost psychotic
preoccupation of the Communist regime with secrecy appeared to many, not
unnaturally, to place a special premium on efforts to penetrate that
by secretive methods of our own. This led, of course, to the creation here
of a vast bureaucracy dedicated to this particular purpose; and this
after the fashion of all great bureaucratic structures, has endured to this
day long after most of the reasons for it have disappeared.
Even in the Soviet time, much of it was superfluous. A lot of what we
to such elaborate and dangerous means to obtain secretly would have been
here for the having, given the requisite quiet and scholarly analysis of
what already lay before us.
The attempt to elicit information by secret means has another very
negative effect that is seldom noted. The development of clandestine
in another country involves, of course, the placing and the exploitation of
secret agents in that country. This naturally incites the mounting of a
substantial effort of counterintelligence on the part of the respective
country's government. This, in turn, causes us to respond with an equally
vigorous effort of counterintelligence in order to maintain the integrity
our espionage effort.
This competition in counterintelligence efforts tends to grow into
dimensions that wholly overshadow the original effort of positive
intelligence procurement that gave rise to it in the first place. It takes
aspects which cause it to be viewed as a game, played in its own rights.
Unfortunately, it is a game requiring such lurid and dramatic character
that it dominates the attention
both of those who practice it and of those in the press who exploit it.
is the fascination it exerts that it tends wholly to obscure, even for the
general public, the original reasons for it.
It would be interesting to know what proportion of the energies and
expenses and bureaucratic involvement of the C.I.A. is addressed to this
consuming competition, and whether one ever stacks this up against the
of its almost forgotten original purposes. Do people ever reflect, one
wonders, that the best way to protect against the penetration of one's
secrets by others is to have the minimum of secrets to conceal?
One more point. At the bottom of the whole great effort of secret
intelligence, which has played so nefarious a part in the entire history of
great-power relationships in this passing century, there has usually lain
the assumption by each party that if it did not engage to the limit in that
exercise, the other party, working in secret, might develop a weapon so
devastating that it could confront all others with the demand that they
submit to its will "or else."
But this sort of anxiety is now greatly outdated. The nuclear competition
has taught us that the more
terrible the weapons available, the more suicidal becomes any conceivable
actual use of them. With the recognition of the implications of this simple
fact would go a large part of the motiviation for our frantic efforts of
secret intelligence. In this respect, too, this is really a new age. It is
time we recognized it and drew the inescapable conclusions.
There may still be areas, very small areas really, in which there is a
real need to penetrate someone else's curtain of secrecy. All right -- but
then please, without the erection of false pretenses and elaborate efforts
to deceive -- and without, to the extent possible -- the attempt to
"spies" on the adversary's territory. We easily become, ourselves, the
sufferers from these methods of deception. For they inculcate in their
authors, as well as their intended victims, unlimited cynicism, causing
to lose all realistic understanding of the interrelationship, in what they
are doing, of ends and means.
George F. Kennan is professor emeritus of historical studies at the
Institute for Advanced Study.
Ax, dorogoj professor! Kak zhe "naivno" i "neaktual'no" zvuchit etot Vash
prizyv v sovremennoj Rossii!
Vy zhe zamaxivaetes' na "samoe svyatoe"! Sejchas, kogda natovskaya shpana
(v drugix kontekstax: "NATOvskie polchishcha") rvutsya na vostok (novoe
izdanie "Drang nach Osten"), *professiya*, o kotoroj Vy govorite,
perezhivaet vtoroe (tochnee, N-noe) rozhdenie. Da yesli by ne bylo NATO i
zhivotnogo instinkta zapolnyat' lyubuyu shchel' - pri otkryvshejsya
voznozhnosti, - to eto vsyo nado bylo by vydumat'! Ved' eto pridast novyj
impul's k burnomu vozrozhdeniyu uzhe - kazalos' by - otmirayushchej
professii. Kak zhe eti natovskie shestyorki zdorovo podygrali nam v etom
Konechno, nel'zya govorit', chto eto xarakterno tol'ko dlya nashej
(mnogostradal'noj) strany. Razvedka imeetsya vo vsex stranax, imelas'
vsegda i neobxodimost' v nej nikto ne osparivaet i ne otricaet. Xotya by
dlya proverki soblyudeniya vypolneniya dostignutyx soglashenij. No, za
nebol'shim isklyucheniem, navernoe, nigde vo vsyom mire razvedke +
kontrrazvedke ne pridavalos' takogo [samodovleyushchego] znacheniya, kak v
Rossii/SU. Yesli proanalizirovat' nashu istoriyu, so vsemi etimi VChK, GPU,
OGPU, NKVD, MGB, KGB, FSK/FSB, to poluchitsya, chto vsya istoriya nashej
strany, nashego naroda svedyotsya k tomu, chto odna chast' naseleniya
nadzirala i shpionila za drugoj (prichyom, lyudi iz obeix etix "polovinok"
chasto smeshivalis' i menyalis' mestami).
Nigde v mire (nu, krome mozhet byt' Gaiti, Kambodzhe i nekotoryx drugix
stran) ne bylo takoj
paranodaidal'noj "priverzhennosti" (ya by skazal, "zavisimosti") ot etogo
"instrumenta" vlasti. Mozhno bylo ekonomit' na vsyom: zdravooxranenii,
obrazovanii, nauke, kulture, ekologii, no nikogda - na "organax". Nu i te,
konechno, staralis': pomimo svoix "osnovnyx" funkcij, "organy"
obespechivali IM oxranu i razvlecheniya/udovol'stviya, medobsluzhivanie i
otdyx, ustranenie sopernikov i vsyo-vsyo-vsyo. Takim obrazom, "organy" (a
eto nash tradicionnyj obraz "razvedki i kontrrazvedki") prevratilis' v
To i delo slyshno o zabastovkax uchitelej, medikov, elektrikov, shaxtyorov,
no nikto ne slyshal, chtoby zabastovali chekisty ili ix "dobrovol'nye
pomoshchniki" [stukachi]. Fakticheski, tol'ko
eti kategorii "rabotnikov" i procvetayut nyne v nashej strane: obychno
bezrabotica im ne grozit, da pomimo etogo idyot solidnaya doplata "po 9-omu
punktu" [t.n. "reptil'nye fondy"]. I sami oni, i potomki ix, kak pravilo,
xorosho pristroeny (v izdatel'stvax, redakciyax, bankax, zarubezhnyx
kompanuiyax; detishki i vnuki rabotayut ili uchatsya v zarubezhnyx
universitetax), aspirantura, luchshie zhil'yo, detsady, shkoly i t.p. -
eto _tol'ko_ dlya "svoix" / "dostojnyx". Dlya "ne svoix" (dissidentov,
veruyushchix, otkaznikov i dr.) - psixushki, tyur'my, nedopushchenie "k
blagam civilizacii", razbitye sem'i, deti, vtyanutye v sekty, narkomaniyu,
otluchenie ix ot sem'i, prevrashchenie v "Pavlikov Morozovyx"... Vprochem,
zachem vsyo eto rasskazyvat'?
Vsyo zhe soxranilos' - i prakticheski v netronutom vide - do six por, i vse
poryadki absolyutno *te zhe*. Tak vot, professor Kennan zamaxivaetsya na
"samoe svyatoe", xochet ostavit' etix bednyx lyudej "bez kuska xleba",
xochet, chtoby ix zheny i docheri
poshli na panel', deti nachali pobirat'sya ili myt' bogateyam mashiny, a
vzroslye synov'ya - idti voevat' v Chechnyu. Da ne byvat' etomu! Ne za to
borolis' nashi otcy i dedy, chtoby iz-za kakix-to brednej nam vsem vraz
lishit'sya etogo. My postroili eto gosudarstvo, my sozdali luchshuyu v mire
"razvedku" i "kontrrazvedku", a teper' chto - vsyo psu pod xvost? Ne byvat'
etomu! Tem bolee, chto shpionov u nas poka xvataet:
17 May 97 p 2
Report by Aleksandr Khinsheyn:
"CIA Agent Sentenced to 12 Years"
An American spy, Moisey Finkel, was sentenced to 12 years in
jail by Moscow City Court yesterday.
Our newspaper wrote more than once on this case. An employee of one
of the "closed" Defense Ministry NII [scientific research institute]
in St. Petersburg, Finkel was recruited by the CIA several years ago.
This was when he came to the United States Embassy in Moscow for an
exit visa. In exchange for providing classified information, Finkel
was promised a big remuneration and help in emigrating to the United
Sates. According to information available to us, the agent passed on
to the CIA a number of data on the NII's work pertaining, in
particular, to nuclear submarines.
Soon after he had been recruited,
however, Finkel turned to the FSB [Federal Security Service] of his
own accord and for unclear reasons. He revealed that he was
"approached for being recruited" by a special service officer, and he
was asking not to regard him as traitor. But the ruse did not work.
In the course of work, the counterintelligence found out the real
state of affairs and Finkel was arrested.
Rech' shla o US$500.000. A tema "razgovorov" kasalas' *izbrannyx* voprosov
gidroakustiki, v kotoroj specializirovalsya nash geroj. Vrode by nemolodoj
uzhe, "gramotnyj" specialist, daval podpisku i dolzhen byl prekrasno
ponimat', kuda idyot i vo chto vlezaet. "Zhadnost' fraera sgubila?"