Washington — somewhere behind the walls of the building office of the Federal Bureau of investigation in Washington before a small group of FBI agents set a difficult task — to find out how the Russian government tried to manipulate the presidential election in the United States.
This case causes a lot of endless rumors and speculation in Washington and beyond.
But for those instructed to get to the bottom of all these statements and allusions, is just another “regular counter-intelligence investigation”, as one senior us official. And add to that only that the task is to find out how a data cache (as it turned out — the original documents of the CIA) came to the site WikiLeaks.
Welcome to the world of top-secret division of the FBI counterintelligence — what “fishers of spies”.
It’s a secret world that is closed even to those in the headquarters of the FBI, who is aware of and has access to information — a secret sphere, where agents for the ability to appreciate silence not less than in their ability to search activities.
“They kept it a closely guarded secret, sealed with seven seals” — says one of the veteran agents of the FBI.
One source familiar with the circumstances of the investigation, “the Russian case” in order to “give” information about the number of agents assigned to this case, resorting to such means as a mathematical equation.
Them 5-10 people less than was involved in the investigation of electronic correspondence, Hillary Clinton, said a source who is not allowed to make public statements and so agreed to talk on condition of anonymity. In the investigation of the case was attended by 25 people, so the “Russian case” involved 15-20 people.
Resources for investigation of Clinton stood out given the fact that the agents had to classify a huge amount of electronic data for a limited period of time remaining before the upcoming presidential elections, says the source. In the case of the investigation of the “Russian case” so there was no hurry and work more is to carry out interviews with agents, informants.
We should not think that if this time in the investigation involved fewer agents, hence the interest in this case is small, says our source. Information on developments and investigations are regularly transmitted in the chain up to the highest.
The Department of counterintelligence, who in the Office referred to simply as CD, is responsible for the protection of classified information of the intelligence community of the United States. It also protects the advanced technology of American institutions — both public and private, provides for the protection of weapons of mass destruction, and exclude access to it by enemies of the United States, and conducts operational activities to curb the activities of foreign agents — including cyber attacks.
Sometimes the operations last for several years in a careful, thorough and secret work, the purpose of which is recruitment or neutralization of foreign agents.
One of the reasons that their investigations take a long time is that their operations are rarely prepared in advance, such as Bank robbery or kidnapping.
For example, around the investigation of “Russian Affairs” there are many guesses and assumptions about the importance of meetings between people associated with President Donald trump, and the Russian Ambassador to the U.S. Sergei Kislyak.
“The meeting by itself means nothing,” says Mike Rogers (Mike Rogers), a former FBI agent and Republican Congressman from Michigan.
“First of all, they have to find a crime”, — says the agents Rogers, who is a commentator for CNN on issues of national security.
“As a Congressman, met twice with Kislyak, he says. And it is not a crime.”
According to the results of their investigations in criminal cases are opened infrequently. And even less of their work covered in the press.
However, in 2015, there was one exception, when the counter-intelligence Department has openly placed in the merit that he prevented the activity of the Russian spy ring working in new York. According to the Federal authorities, the group was led by Evgeny Buryakov, who worked at Russian Bank in Manhattan. He was an agent of the SVR — the Russian equivalent of the CIA. It was an operation, based on which it would be possible to write a spy novel — with radio intercepts, surveillance, surveillance and encrypted messages. Last year, Buryakov pleaded guilty and was sentenced to two and a half years of imprisonment.
Ironically, the biggest buzz surrounding the division rose in the press in the backdrop of a serious betrayal of one of his longtime agent Robert Hanssen (Robert Philip Hanssen).
Hanssen was arrested in 2001 and charged that for 20 years sold classified information to the former USSR and Russia. He was paid hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash and diamonds in exchange for classified information, which he often laid in “the hiding place”, where it took the curators of Hanssen. He was arrested immediately after he made his last bookmark, then he pleaded guilty and is serving a life sentence in prison. He is considered a spy, which caused the FBI the biggest damage in the history of this organization.
But after his arrest, then-FBI Director Louis Freeh (Louis Freeh) was created for fellow Hanssen division of the Department of counterintelligence is to combat “the most perfidious actions which you can imagine”.
“Their work is a counter-intelligence activities in the best form and in the toughest conditions associated with high risk and high responsibility — said Free. — Colleague of Hanssen and his staff, the FBI investigated and did it calmly, without hesitation and without danger to others. Much of what these men and women did remains classified information, but their success and the success of their colleagues in the CIA is a unique experience and testifies to their integrity and dedication”.
The counter-intelligence Department so secret that even former agents agree not to publicly speak about his former work in the Department.
In the words of one former leader, agents must have a set of skills that would seem quite compatible with each other. They should be good companions, able to recruit agents and informants, to keep in touch with them and keep them under control. And at the same time, they should be able to keep my mouth shut to anyone about anything not to tell.
“In 95% of cases, and even more often, the information is confidential,” says the source.
“We need to be very disciplined about what you say and to whom — he said. My wife knew where I worked. But really didn’t know what I’m doing.”
According to him, working in counterintelligence is unlikely to appeal to those who adhere to the stereotypes and believes that COP is a “tough macho”, or those who want to be the center of attention.
“Everything here is much thinner. You work quietly, without advertising itself. You don’t want to be noticed, — tells our source. — It’s not something to break open doors or to carry out raids on drug dealers”.