Philip Giraldi, a former CIA Officer, describes the revelations of a woman called Sibel Edmonds in an article in American Conservative. And boy, they are spectacular.
[Edmonds] the former FBI translator turned whistleblower tells a chilling story of corruption at Washington’s highest levels—sale of nuclear secrets, shielding of terrorist suspects, illegal arms transfers, narcotics trafficking, money laundering, espionage. She may be a first-rate fabulist, but Edmonds’s account is full of dates, places, and names. And if she is to be believed, a treasonous plot to embed moles in American military and nuclear installations and pass sensitive intelligence to Israeli, Pakistani, and Turkish sources was facilitated by figures in the upper echelons of the State and Defense Departments. ... Edmonds’s revelations have attracted corroboration in the form of anonymous letters apparently written by FBI employees.
Of course, Philip Giraldi has his detractors. He famously claimed that "in 2005 that the USA was preparing plans to attack Iran with nuclear weapons in response to a terrorist action against the US, independently of whether or not Iran was involved in the action." But whether or not Edmonds or Giraldi are telling the truth, the incident provides a glimpse into the fascinating world of counterintelligence.
One of the sad realities of counterintelligence is that its success is largely dependent upon surveilling your own people. I recently attended a talk on defending computer networks against hostile intrusions and the key to a successful defense apparently lay in understanding what the network 'normally' contained; to build up a detailed picture of how it 'normally' performed in order to detect anomalies against this expected background. Detecting unusual network operations, identifying abnormal operating systems attempting to gain access to resources, and flagging odd requests is only possible when the usual, the normal and commonplace are known. In a computing environment the dynamic normal is determined by statistical profiling and the archiving of large data sets. In the human environment the dynamic normal is often obtained by following people around and tapping their comms.
But unfortunately things aren't that simple. Smart hackers can sidestep the defenses of highly protected network by attacking the man in the loop. By bribing or intimidating a network administrator a computer attacker can not only break into the system, but acquire an accomplice who can cover his tracks, or at the very least, misdirect the forensics. Similarly, the nightmare scenario of counterintelligence occurs when the enemy infiltrates the counterintelligence apparatus itself. Who guards the guardians? Who watches the watchers?
So whether or not there was a mole in the State and Defense Departments is not something we are likely to know until we read it in the newspapers. And the newspapers tell the truth, don't they?