The CIA gets serious

Dan Kohn
Mon, 15 Apr 2002 00:46:46 -0700

Hard not to imagine the Jerry Bruckheimer script as you read about the
"Clandestine Service Reserve":

Six days after the attacks, in remarks televised on the CIA
headquarters' closed-circuit system, James Pavitt, chief of the CIA's
clandestine wing, laid out the plan. He announced that he was pulling in
hundreds of employees from other parts of the CIA to join the
counter-terrorism effort, and that several legendary case officers had
agreed to return from retirement to help direct the fight. Officers
began moving abroad in what has become the agency's biggest covert
deployment in more than a decade.

In addition, dozens of retired agents have been activated from the
Clandestine Service Reserve, a standby unit of retired officers with
top-secret security clearances. Other personnel were recruited for the
agency's paramilitary unit, called the Special Activities Division, in a
hiring spree of former military officers. Anyone with relevant language
skills or experience in Afghanistan and environs was particularly
sought-after, officials say. New hires were hurried through a crash
four-week training program, schooled in logistics and communications and
briefed on what to expect in Afghanistan.

          - dan
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