The Master of Disguise: My Secret Life in the CIA

By Antonio J. Mendez

From the writer of Argo comes an unforgettable behind-the-scenes tale of espionage in motion. within the first ever memoir through a top-level operative to be approved via the CIA, Antonio J. Mendez finds the crafty tips and insights that helped store enormous quantities from lethal situations.

Adept at developing new identities for an individual, at any place, Mendez was once interested in operations around the globe, from “Wild West” adventures in East Asia to chilly struggle intrigue in Moscow. In 1980, he orchestrated the break out of six americans from a hostage scenario in progressive Tehran, Iran. This outstanding operation encouraged the motion picture Argo, directed by means of and starring Ben Affleck.

The grasp of Disguise provides us a privileged examine what rather occurs on the optimum degrees of overseas espionage: within the box, undercover, and in the back of closed doors.

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Now he spoke emphatically. “Our younger topic easily can't take even more of this marking time. ” Jacob defined how he had spent late-night soul classes with NESTOR, fueled through the beneficiant provide of Stolichnaya vodka Mac had provided from operational shops. It used to be Jacob’s method of bonding with NESTOR and assessing his precise personality. Jacob made up our minds that the Russian mixed intelligence and initiative with ambition—an unlucky mix of features for a Soviet espionage officer. “He’s additionally Russian to the core,” Jacob famous, pertaining to the virtually mystical connection the Russian commonly feels together with his Motherland. This inextricable bond made it very tricky to persuade Russians to desert their whole lifestyles and start back in exile. NESTOR’s state of affairs used to be much more awkward due to his kinfolk ties, humans he enjoyed dearly, whose careers will be broken within the better of instances, or who could undergo worse punishment if the KGB implicated them in his defection. “The lad is wobbly on the knees, I’m afraid,” Jacob confided. “I’ve needed to deliver him again from the edge greater than as soon as. He and that i are going to need to move trunk and tail during the terminal and onto the aircraft. ” every person within the workplace grasped the need of Jacob’s daring recommendation, although it almost certainly undercut the necessity to keep deniability. If NESTOR have been stuck within the airport with Jacob within sight, the Russian may possibly by accident compromise him. even if, it used to be an unavoidable probability. Jacob might easily need to run interference via go out formalities whereas retaining a definite distance from the topic. one other important factor was once raised: we'd need to reconfirm either NESTOR’s and Jacob’s airline reservations in order that they should be guaranteed to look at the flight occur. within the tightening tactics after NESTOR’s disappearance, the distinctive department had persisted to insist that each one tourists in my opinion visit their airline place of work with their tickets and trip files; no reconfirmation will be authorized through mobilephone. yet now we discovered that, given Jacob’s ability and event in facing the slender bureaucratic mentality of the tradition, we'd be able to make the most of his presence on the airport and finesse this challenge. He may arrive for the flight and demand that nobody had informed him the need of reconfirming his reservation, including that he knew for sure that there have been lots of seats on board the aircraft—a aspect we speedy proven via Raymond’s neighborhood airport touch. as soon as Jacob decided that he had confident the clerks on the airport check-in counter, he might sign NESTOR to process. nonetheless, no matter if Jacob was once unsuccessful and was once bumped from the flight, we might nonetheless have time to abort the operation with out exposing NESTOR. Jacob’s plan to run interference on the airport established a vital precept of exfiltration tradecraft: while a few minor point within the safety strategies is doubtful or can't be integrated within the rfile package deal, constantly err at the part of omission; act blameless, ignorant, and offended.

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