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April 12, 2012
An American Spy A Novel Olen Steinhauer St. Martin's/Minotaur Books: 386 pp., $25.99
April 27, 2014 | Times Editorial Board
The recent revelation that the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department secretly conducted aerial surveillance of the entire city of Compton for nine days in 2012 prompted outrage from the city's mayor, its residents and civil liberties groups. The Sheriff's Department justified the surveillance by saying it was only a brief test of a program provided by a private security company. A small, manned Cessna plane equipped with an array of cameras flew six hours a day and only in daylight, beaming video information back to the local sheriff's station.
June 7, 2011
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy A Novel John le Carré Penguin: 400 pp., $16 paper
April 26, 2014 | By Susan King
There's never been a TV series quite like "The Prisoner," which premiered in England in 1967 and debuted in the U.S. the summer of 1968 on CBS. Best described as James Bond meets George Orwell filtered through Franz Kafka, the cult series revolved around a British secret agent (Patrick McGoohan) who wants to resign from the service. Deemed too dangerous to retire, they kidnap him and send him to an idyllic, though completely isolated, seaside resort called the Village. There residents are assigned numbers instead of names and their every movement is followed by monitoring systems and security forces.
January 15, 2010
'The Spy Next Door' MPAA rating: PG for sequences of action violence and some mild rude humor Running time: 1 hour, 32 minutes Playing: In general release
April 23, 2012 | By David S. Cloud
WASHINGTON - The Pentagon is beefing up its spy service to send several hundred undercover intelligence officers to overseas hot spots to steal secrets on national security threats after a decade of focusing chiefly on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The move comes amid concerns that the Defense Intelligence Agency, the Pentagon's spy service, needs to expand operations beyond the war zones and to work more closely with the CIA, according to a senior Defense official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly about the classified program.
May 9, 2011
Firebird spy plane Operates with or without onboard pilot Wingspan: 65 feet Length: 34 feet Height: 9.7 feet Top speed: About 230 mph Altitude: 30,000 feet Maximum endurance: 40 hours Payload capacity: 1,240 pounds Source: Northrop Grumman
March 6, 2003
Re "N. Korean Jets Stalk U.S. Plane," March 4: If a North Korean reconnaissance plane flew up and down the U.S. Pacific coast just outside our territorial waters, what would our military do? Would we consider such a flight a "provocation"? Would North Korea be justified in declaring that our interceptor planes constituted a provocation? Just wondering. Marvin Klotz Venice
February 22, 2009 | Leslie Absher, Leslie Absher is a writer living in Northern California.
I've criticized the CIA all my adult life -- for its role in overthrowing democratically elected governments and supporting brutal dictatorships. But as a child, I had no idea my father worked for the CIA. He was a nerd who wore black horn-rimmed glasses, a dark suit jacket and a tie most of the time. Whenever we referred to his place of employment, we just called it "the office." We moved around every two years or so for his job. As I grew older, I became more curious.
February 4, 2012 | By Ashley Powers
I got kicked out of a Nevada caucus. I had gone Saturday morning to a community center at Sun City Anthem, where I'd interviewed voters during previous elections. A hub for an age-restricted community of mostly retirees, the building was so packed that one precinct had been moved into the lobby. I chose at random precinct 1721, where voters had crammed into a small, stuffy room. It wasn't much of a secret that I was a reporter: I wore a press badge issued by the Clark County GOP around my neck and was scribbling on a yellow notepad the size of a hardcover book.
April 24, 2014 | By Alan Eyerly
Wracked with guilt over murders he commits as a KGB agent, Philip Jennings (Matthew Rhys) falls into a deep, angry depression on “Martial Eagle,” Episode 9 of “The Americans” on FX. His latest killings occur at a camp where Navy SEALs covertly train Contra field commanders intent on overthrowing Nicaragua's Sandinista government. Philip and spy wife Elizabeth (Keri Russell) assassinate the Contras, but innocent lives are lost. “You didn't have a choice,” Elizabeth says, trying to ease her husband's pain.
April 23, 2014 | By Angel Jennings, Richard Winton and James Rainey
To the 96,000 residents of Compton, the little Cessna would have looked like scores of other small planes that flew over the city each day. But anyone paying close attention might have noticed the single-engine craft kept circling the city in a continuous loop. What they could not have known was that it packed unusual cargo - a bank of a dozen wide-angle industrial imaging cameras. They recorded low-resolution images of every corner of the 10.1-square-mile city. For nine days in early 2012, the small plane beamed the images to the local Sheriff's Department station, where deputies observed fender benders, necklace snatchings and a shooting.
April 22, 2014 | By Ken Dilianian
WASHINGTON - A new policy bars employees of U.S. spy agencies from providing reporters with "intelligence information," even if it is unclassified, without first getting official permission. Employees who violate the directive, which was issued on March 20 by James Clapper, the director of national intelligence, face disciplinary action or firing. Critics said the order adds to a climate in which intelligence agency employees face greater risk in trying to help the public understand what the government is doing.
April 22, 2014 | By Meredith Blake
In person, Welsh actor Matthew Rhys is charmingly evasive. Rather than offering long-winded answers about himself, Rhys is just as likely to respond to a question with another question, a tendency which makes it easier to understand how he effortlessly slips into so many disparate identities on FX's Cold War drama "The Americans. " Each week, Rhys plays a Soviet spy posing as a suburban American dad named "Philip Jennings. " In the line of duty, he assumes numerous other personas, relying on an impressive array of wigs, facial hair and eyewear to maintain his cover.
April 20, 2014 | By Sherif Tarek
Prince Bandar bin Sultan's replacement last week as Saudi Arabia's intelligence chief has fueled speculation about a shift in the monarchy's shaky relations with the United States and its position toward the Syrian conflict - not to mention about the prince's political future. Yet many political experts and pundits believe Bandar's departure will barely affect Saudi foreign policies. And they say it's possible the prince could return to the political scene stronger than ever. “The last person to be relieved of his duties [in 2012]
April 14, 2014 | By Michael Muskal
The Washington Post and the Guardian captured coveted Pulitzer Prizes for public service on Monday for their revelations about the U.S. government's massive surveillance programs. The newspapers' stories were based on thousands of secret documents obtained from Edward Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor who is living in Russia after fleeing the United States. The revelations set off a national debate about the scope of the U.S. government's collection of private information for security reasons.
September 25, 2012 | By Deborah Netburn
Be careful of what you do in front of a rent-to-own computer. You never know who may be watching. On Tuesday, the Federal Trade Commission announced it had reached a settlement with seven rent-to-own companies that spied on their customers through the very computers they rented to them. The FTC said that each of the seven companies - including Aspen Way Enterprises, J.A.G. Rents and C.A.L.M. Ventures - installed a piece of software called PC Rental Agent that enabled them to see keystroke logs, take screen shots and even take pictures using the computer's webcam, all without their customers' knowledge.
April 14, 2014 | By Judi Dash
This is sneaky: What looks like a typical car remote is actually a spy camera. Swann's HD RemoteCam has a tiny lens and microphone at one end, a key chain at the other, and, on top, a power button and a record button masquerading as “remote control” buttons. Function lights flicker on to indicate you're recording but then quickly go off for stealth purposes. Two additional dummy buttons are part of the disguise. The RemoteCam captures full-color video files or still photos, with time and date stamping.
April 13, 2014 | By W.J. Hennigan
A high-stakes battle is underway in Washington over launching the U.S. government's most sophisticated national security satellites. Space entrepreneur Elon Musk is pitted against the nation's two largest weapons makers, Boeing Co. and Lockheed Martin Corp., in a fight for military contracts worth as much as $70 billion through 2030. For eight years, the Pentagon has paid Boeing and Lockheed - operating jointly as United Launch Alliance - to launch the government's pricey spy satellites without seeking competitive bids.
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