For the second time since plans for the Soviet arts festival were announced, the FBI has admonished San Diegans to be alert for suspicious activity by Soviet visitors.
When pushed for specifics on what to look out for, the answers on both occasions sounded less believable than the names of some of James Bond's female friends.
Being asked your middle initial was one of the warning signs cited by FBI agents. It could mean you will become part of an official KGB report. If a Soviet visitor asks your birth date, perhaps under the guise of an interest in astrology, that's another warning sign. This must be a big one, because the FBI agents mentioned it both times.
We would have thought that relatively few San Diegans, such as those who work on classified projects for the military or defense contractors, would be targets for the KGB. And most of them would know better or would know what to look for without the FBI calling a press conference. Those who don't know better are unlikely tipsters.
But the FBI says that, if KGB agents cannot recruit the top prospects, even janitors could be targets.
Well, we have no doubt that the FBI will get tips on "unusual" activity. The radio talk show hosts will probably hear from many of the same callers.
But we doubt that scrutinizing the behavior of Georgian film directors or mural artists or the actors in the play "Brothers and Sisters" will provide many meaningful leads.
On the other hand, Soviet chefs will be cooking in the mess hall at the Naval Training Center. . . .