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World Affairs Council of Greater Houston

To Catch a Spy: The Art & Future of Counterintelligence with James Olson, Former Chief of CIA Counterintelligence

June 3, 2020 @ 05:00 PM to June 3, 2020 @ - 06:00 PM
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About The Event

The United States is losing the counterintelligence war. Foreign intelligence services, particularly those of China, Russia, and Cuba, are recruiting spies in our midst and stealing our secrets and cutting-edge technologies. In To Catch a Spy: The Art of Counterintelligence, James M. Olson, former chief of CIA counterintelligence, offers a wake-up call for the American public and also a guide for how our country can do a better job of protecting its national security and trade secrets.

Olson takes the reader into the arcane world of counterintelligence as he lived it during his thirty-year career in the CIA. After an overview of what the Chinese, Russian, and Cuban spy services are doing to the United States, he explains the nitty-gritty of the principles and methods of counterintelligence.

Readers will learn about specific aspects of counterintelligence such as running double-agent operations and surveillance. The book also analyzes twelve actual case studies to illustrate why people spy against their country, the tradecraft of counterintelligence, and where counterintelligence breaks down or succeeds. A “lessons learned” section follows each case study.

About The Speaker

james olson

James M. Olson served for over thirty years in the Directorate of Operations of the Central Intelligence Agency, mostly overseas in clandestine operations. In addition to several foreign assignments, he was chief of counterintelligence at CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia. Currently, he is a Professor of the Practice at the Bush School of Government and Public Service of Texas A&M University. He is the author of “To Catch A Spy: The Art of Counterintelligence” and “Fair Play: The Moral Dilemmas of Spying.”

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Date And Time

June 3, 2020 @ 05:00 PM to June 3, 2020 @ - 06:00 PM


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