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True Believer: Inside the Investigation and Capture of Ana Montes, Cuba's Master Spy

Carmichael, Scott W.

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ISBN 10: 1591141001 / ISBN 13: 9781591141006
Published by Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, MD, 2007
Condition: Very good Hardcover
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About this Item

Glued binding. Paper over boards. x, [2], 187, [1] p. Index. From Wikipedia: "Ana Belén Montes (Born February 28, 1957) is a former senior analyst at the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) in the United States. On September 21, 2001, she was arrested and subsequently charged with Conspiracy to Commit Espionage for the government of Cuba. Montes eventually pleaded guilty to spying and in October 2002, was sentenced to a 25-year prison term followed by five years probation. Montes was born in West Germany, where her father, Alberto Montes, was posted as an Army doctor. Her family members were of Asturian origins since her grandparents had immigrated to Puerto Rico. The family later lived in Topeka, Kansas and later Towson, Maryland, where she graduated from Loch Raven High School in 1975. In 1979 she earned a degree in foreign affairs from the University of Virginia, and in 1988 she finished a master's degree at Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies. Montes' brother and sister, Lucy and Tito, became FBI officers and her former boyfriend, Roger Corneretto, was an intelligence officer specializing in Cuba for the Pentagon. [4] It was later revealed that her father, a Puerto Rican, had conservative views, and had a strained relationship with his more radical daughter. Montes joined the DIA from the U.S. Department of Justice in September 1985. Her first assignment was at Bolling Air Force Base in Washington where she worked as an intelligence research specialist. In 1992, Montes was selected for the DIA's Exceptional Analyst Program and later traveled to Cuba to study the Cuban military. Prior to her arrest, she lived in a two bedroom co-op in Cleveland Park, Washington, DC. Montes advanced rapidly through the ranks at DIA and became DIA's most senior Cuban analyst. Her co-workers regarded her as responsible and dependable, and noted her "no-nonsense" attitude. Prosecutors would later allege that Montes was already working for the Cubans when she joined the DIA in 1985. Montes communicated with the Cuban Intelligence Service through encrypted messages and received her instructions through shortwave encrypted transmissions from Cuba. In addition, Montes communicated by coded numeric pager messages with the Cuban Intelligence Service by public telephones located in the District of Columbia and Maryland. The codes included 'I received message' or 'danger. '" The prosecutors further stated that all of the information was on water-soluble paper that could be rapidly destroyed. During the course of the investigation against her, it was determined that Montes passed a considerable amount of classified information to Cuba's government, including the identities of four spies. In 2007, DIA counterintelligence official Scott W. Carmichael publicly alleged that it was Ana Montes who told Cuban intelligence officers about a clandestine U.S. Army camp in El Salvador. Carmichael alleged that Montes knew about the existence of the Special Forces camp because she visited it only a few weeks before the camp was attacked in 1987 by Cuban-supported guerrillas of the FMLN. Carmichael, who had led DIA's investigation of Montes, named Montes as being directly responsible for the death of Green Beret SGT Gregory A. Fronius who was killed at El Paraíso, El Salvador, on March 31, 1987 during the FMLN attack. Carmichael characterized the damage Montes caused to the DIA and other U.S. intelligence agencies as "exceptionally grave, " and stated that she compromised a "special access program" that was kept even from him, the lead investigator on her case. In a May 6, 2002 interview with CBS News, former Undersecretary of State John Bolton stated that an official 1998 U.S. government report with significant contributions by Montes concluded that Cuba did not represent a significant military threat to the United States or the region. Bolton alleged that it was not possible to exclude the possibility that the administration of President. Bookseller Inventory # 68054

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Bibliographic Details

Title: True Believer: Inside the Investigation and ...

Publisher: Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, MD

Publication Date: 2007

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition: Very good

Dust Jacket Condition: very good

Edition: First edition. First printing [stated].

About this title

Synopsis:

Ana Montes appeared to be a model employee of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA). Known to her coworkers as the Queen of Cuba, she was an overachiever who advanced quickly through the ranks of Latin American specialists to become the intelligence community's top analyst on Cuban affairs. But throughout her sixteen-year career at DIA, Montes was sending Castro some of America's most closely guarded secrets and at the same time helping influence what the United States thought it knew about Cuba. When she was finally arrested in September 2001, she became the most senior American intelligence official ever accused of operating as a Cuban spy from within the federal U.S. government. Unrepentant as she serves out her time in a federal prison in Texas, Montes remains the only member of the intelligence community ever convicted of espionage on behalf of the Cuban government.


This inside account of the investigation that led to her arrest has been written by Scott W. Carmichael, the DIA's senior counterintelligence investigator who persuaded the FBI to launch an investigation. Although Montes did not fit the FBI's profile of a spy and easily managed to defeat the agency's polygraph exams, Carmichael became suspicious of her activities and with the FBI over a period of several years developed a solid case against her. Here he tells the story of that long and ultimately successful spy hunt. Carmichael reveals the details of their efforts to bring her to justice, offering readers a front-row seat for the first major U.S. espionage case of the twentieth century. She was arrested less than twenty-four hours before learning details of the U.S. plan to invade Afghanistan post-September 11. Motivated by ideology not money, Montes was one of the last "true believers" of the communist era. Because her arrest came just ten days after 9/11, it went largely unnoticed by the American public. This book calls attention to the grave damage Montes inflicted on U.S. security--Carmichael even implicates her in the death of a Green Beret fighting Cuban-backed insurgents in El Salvador--and the damage she would have continued to inflict had she not been caught.

About the Author:

Scott W. Carmichael, senior security and counterintelligence investigator for the Defense Intelligence Agency was the lead agent on the Ana Montes espionage investigation. His contributions to national security have earned him the DIA Civilian Expeditionary Medal and Award for Meritorious Civilian Service, the Defense Intelligence Director's Award, the Department of Defense Counterintelligence Award, and the National Intelligence Medal of Achievement. He lives n the Washington, D.C area.

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