A MIRROR FOR AGENT HANDLERS

Created: 6/1/1962

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APPROVES FGRE'.asnSM CIA HISTORICAL REVIEW PROGRAM

irror For Agent Handlers AUTHOR: Hermit B. Teichholtz

VOLUME:

STUDIES IN

INTELLIGENCE

A collection of articles on trio historical, operational, doctrinal, ond iheorelical aspects ol Inlclligcnco.

All suiements of fact, opinion or analysis expressed in Studies in Intelligence are those of

the authors They do not necessarily reflect official positions or views of the Central Intelligence Agency or any other US Government entity, past or present. Nothing in the contents should be construed as asserting or implying US Governmenl endorsement of an article's factual statements and interpretations.

Parallel dissatisfactions rankle in agents on opposite sides of the globe.

a MIRROR FOR AGENT HANDLERS Kormlt B. Telchholti

an agent, especially in writing,

ai>specially in writing, bis frank and unflattering opinion of his superior and his methods of handling problems and people. It should be of valuease officer, however, to be aware of what his agentsthink of him; even If their criticism Is unjustified oror their views myopic and confused, It Is of Importance for the handling problem that they hold theseull assessment of the agent must take Into account his personal altitudes, togard the eaje_ officer and his mental reactions to the officer's instructions and demands.

There are presented in parallel on the following pages en-tracts from two such written opinions obtained during the early fifties, one from an agent in Germany and the other from one In Korea, wherein the criticism does not appear to be altogether unjustified. While they contain hints of self-bi teres* and some one-sided views, the remarkable similarityumber of subjects displayed by two commentaries of such widely separated geographic and ethnic origin reinforces their validity and makes them worthy of some study. Both agents said that after much hesitation they finally succeeded in "unloading their minds in completes indeed they apparently did.

Trust

^ We have not found common ground on_ lbe_ point ol trust. Thla has been the most grievous side during the pest tea years of our collaboration. Tour basis forhis: we, Americans hare the money and ve pay you, you do not harea completely dumb head; therefore, give us the Information we need. The human aspect, or all that we can call the spiritual elements of our collaboration, automatically came under the headingecond. Ifhird,o not wish to say that there was no trust from the side of myperhaps there was.ave been convinced the whole time that It did nothe lack of eoruV dence came because of disbelief in me, then something should be done about It. It Is most Importanthould beured that this It done for this or that reason and thehould not be left unclarifled.

With tew exceptions, none of my case officers (over one dozen if of them) did anything to erase this distrust between one

person and another, especially in my case, angent. Thla would have been achievediverse number of

ways,loser fellowship, discussions,eeleed of some comradeship and trusting friends, to talk things

over with them, to learn about their activities, their Joys and

sorrowa

From Korea

I know that In thla business you have lo suspect practically everybody you are dealing with, often Including yourself. Andelieve Itery poor policy to let your suspicion be known to the person involved, especially in handling theagent. When you reveal your suspicion. If It is unfounded, you lose your good friends. When youell-founded suspicion, you give premature warning and often lose your enemy uncaught. In either case you lose more than you can possibly gain.

The Polygraph

From Germany

I believe the voluntary aspect at the polygraph Is lost when refusaj^fo^tanto *gp?raon'iunder suspicion. Despite the fears that some of his personal secrets may be revealed, the agent accepts the treatmenthe does not wish to fall underheof the machine predisposes the Individual to think that hhyjuperjors distrust Jdm. The impression Is that the superiors can find the Truth only with this aid since all other methods have been unsuccessful. Also, the questions asked at timeserson's dipnltv. When the self-respect Isthe mdivTQual feels angry with those who enforce this tactic.

I have undergone the test twice. In the first instance It made me unhappy onlyinim urn degree. My case officer explained the purpose and introduced meeryman who,rivate discussion, gave me furtherNo one was present withorked until thatowever, on the second occasion the test cameurprise to meayas quite unprepared from the standpoint of my morale. Then, to my astonishment. It was given In the presence of the case officer withorked for the past year. My feelings were aggravated further when the case officer began to ask polygraph questions. The method of Investigation not only aroused my anger,oral depression and disrespect for the officer. It was an error from the psychological standpoint: It tore away from us ail associative contacts that we had builteriod of working together. The polygraph investigation shouldo strengthen the relationship between the case officer and the agent, not destroy lt because of imprudent tactics.

From Korea

I have often wondered whether we are gaining more than losing by the use of theave worked very closely with the system for several years,m sure, more than two hundred testa with the scientific device.o not recall any one case In which the operator really thought he crackederious case of enemy infiltration orwith the enemy. On the otheran recall numerous cases In which the person tested openly expressed his displeasure at being-ht_auspected. Thexplanation that the test was another "routine securityand that Its administration did not mean the person was under any specific suspicion did not do much good hi mostelieve the system would do more good If It were used as an aid In interrogation rather than using It too frequently on too many personseansroutine security

Clandestine Practices

From Germany

pUtndesUnAly of our collaboration is overdone in someuring the course of my collaboration with thean sayannot Identify by name any of the persons withavean supply only the pseudonyms, and then only the first names,rannot Identify thethat employs me, much leu the location of Its offices.

If conspiracy Is carried out so rigorously for practical security reasons, then everything Is In order. However, if lt is Influenced for reasons of disbelief, then thisegativeIn our collaboration and something should be done abouthould be assured that the clandesllnlty Is adheredor this or that reason, not because of me; the affair should not be left unclarifled.

tom*m-i&mkymtew-.

From Korea

run it ih7 lIST aS'er andthe long

55Sir -

0uusing naTo*

relationships and moral perceptions of the Individual and were able to strengthen us and never permitted us to beUeve that we were onilnary, paid, untrusted agents. They always toldaid agent will work for an Intelligence service until the other side pays him more and gives him the possibility of living better. However, intelligence work uses Ideologically motivated people whoiving value In their effort.erson does not have moral values, he cannot partlclpaU In Intelligence. Money Is the means to an end, not the end Itself The Oermans taught us not to place value in money And that was good.

The human aspects cannot be fulfilled with materialWhen one of my American case officers brought me ten cartons of clgarets, he felt It proper to say.ive you more clgarets this time because you gave us more information thishe whole transactionusiness deal,atter of human, relations.ave morethan wasase officer gaveARE package, perhaps worth. The case officer did not place the value of information In the moral category, butplaced me In the categoryaid low-levelought this degradation of the human Individual with all the forceould muster, degradation from the stateuman to thataid spltzeL

Regardless ofay say here, you do not have to remind me ofm andmnow very well about my own past background,m fully aware of my present status as weU. Human relations should receivegreater emphasis In dealing with Korean agents than any search for their proper motivation. The wordeautiful when it means something, but It Is so very hollow wnen used by the wrong persons at wrong times and in wrong places-True, it Is more difficult toell motivated South Korean than toour-leaf clover. But how many Americans serving in Korea could honestly be classified as persons with truly high motivation? Most of them are there simply because they are better offave listened to so many complaints about the living quarters, food, and, above all, "those goddam Koreans" that itig loke for Americans to seek for motivation among Koreans. The sooner the Americans forget about the idea of seeking realamong the Koreans and work at the whole thing moremnari^^yfrajmMake attitude, the better off they will

Mirror for Honoferi

vs. txpCTtiM

From

I can only say that tne people withave worked have apparently had intelligence training and somehad Jong experience. However, frequent changes In case officers, at lust durlnflhe initial period of each new one.that the gentlemen were unacquainted with the area targets and they were not familiar with the specific problems Involved. Individual situations and general appreciation of the operations were often quite foreign to them There were times when the case officer failed to see the difference between. andbserved that each case officergradually filled In the gaps of this type of background knowledge. This positive factor was true with all case officers: with time they acquired knowledge of the operational area and Its problems.

From Korea

Every American in Korea Ja there toertain jobimited amount of time In most cases, he has to rely upon the services of Koreans in order to get this Job done. It wouldot easier for everyone if he would Just concentrate on getting the job done by making the best use of the Koreans as thev ate rather than trying to teach or" convert them to_merican way of life or thinking. Such things should be left to the USIS people or the missionaries serving In Korea. The language barrier is no doubt one of the most serious problems confronting Americans ln Korea and, at. the same time, one of the most convenient excuses behind which many can and do hide their own inefnclency. Don't forget that the language problem bothers Koreans as much as lt bothers Americans. Justew native words no doubt helps you in your social life, but you will And It of little use In your official work.

Evaluation ol Production

. Not one of my ease officers has given me an assessment of mym not aware whether or not headquarters Is satisfied with my work.ould be very grateful if criticism

f wouJdperiodically concerning myo not consider myself toreat specialist In the activity, butttempt Is sincere Inant to accomplish as much as the circumstances permit Forhuman reasons lt_woulfl_be much better forhat the office isave achieved at least some minimum ofertainly would not condemn_anyone_for criticism: InrdSwrh is necessaryould be thankful for It

My feeling that the efforts have been satisfactory comes only from deduction, based on the factave not been

U- "leased from employment and that my salary has been raisedo not desire light or cheap compll-menu or undeserved credit However, it would be more proflt-

, /able to me and my "growth" In the intelligence field if an assessment were given to me periodically. If theavorable, Iterson strength and desire to achieve greater successes; If it Is negative, it drives one to betterlication of effort in order toore favorable criticism In subsequent assessment

Mirror for Hondlt-rs

From Korea

Tho worst trait of the case officer In relation to his men la that of Indifference In assessing the agents or Inthem for what they do or fall to do. the air of Indifference Is unquestionably most harmful The case officer can "raise hell" with his agent, when necessary, but he must neveran attitude ofecall one case officer who. when his men returnedard but unsuccessfulremained in bed and made no effort to receive them. Had the case officer received the group at the gate and reprimanded them, they would appreciate him more, and chances are they would feel very responsible for their failure In the mission. But the indifferent attitude of the case officer made the men forget all about their failure. It only forced them into an attitude of resentment and revolt.

From Germany

as Informedould be advanced to the status of "assistant" and that my salary would be raisedFurther, on this occasion and In two subsequentas toldould beontract to sign and that this contract would stipulate all terms of ourI have yet to see or signontract

During the sameas told to take my wife foron the lake and that all expenses would be paid to me on myook the vacation, although itainy season,as not reimbursed upon my return; it was explained to me that the headquarters refused to grant the reimbursement

Whathinkeries of false promises likeould only think that the case officers HadnTlrust In me.

From Korea

No matter how small and Insignificant It may be, Ajaise promise should never be given to an *rt"'t. You are notnly case officer who offended me thuaTbut .let.me gtvevou serospecific exsunpiea*in"OUxtremely nice to me and my family, but you have made several false promises.

First, you told me several timesould have your car from time to timeot my license, soould takemy family aroundide. You said this even In front of my wife. Butot my license you never even suggested my borrowing your car. Notould have accepted it anyway, but Italse promise.

Second, it was your Idea about my driver's license and you had me study the book of rules. You said you would take me to the Division of Motor Vehicles to applyearner'sYou never meant It.ot the permit anyway, you said you would take me to the police to get the finalaited, after more promises which you never kept, untilot the license through someonenew you were busy, and It all would not have mattered If you had not told me later that you had taken your wife to the policeicense during the same period when you kept saying that you would take care of me.

Third, you kept saying for three or four consecutive weeks that you would come out to my homeunday visit to see how thingsaited for you with my family each weekend, but you never came or even called me. It did not matter too muchad no place to go and had little choice but to stay home whether you came or not. Yet you were careless in making promises.

theipast

LetTus review our o

From Germany

years. Most of therri took place as follows: We met and shook hands. Then the case officer would ask. "What'sfter making myould pull some reports out of myto read them, clearing up some points ln the reports and answering questions. Here andould be offeredclgarets. The meeting would take about an hour,two. At the conclusion we would ask one another whether there were any other questions, then arrange for the next meeting, shake hands and depart from one another. There has been nothinggbout these meetings, no

I friendship, amiability, or other kind of gentleness. TheInvariably turned out as crude business transactions. I

i provided the information and you paid me at the end of the month.

It is my thought that this type of dealing has had anegative impact during the ten years of our coilabora-. Hon. In this sort oferson graduallyobot,oul,oral basis. It brings -forth undesirable complexes, Iterson tondividualitx, and, worst of all, Itaid agent. In order to rid one's self of this role, one bas to goeries of inner conflicts and one has to tell one's self that the situation Is different from what it actually appears to be.

Pram Korea

Korearu.hole, are funny people. You cannot treat them too soft and you cannot drive them too hard; In either case they revolt against you. During my four years of work with American case officers inid not know more than one or twohought had tbe right touch In their handling

of Korean agents. .Laminclined to believe that.poor.

.by tbe

than anything else if the outfit is not getting the results It should.

Let me give you here some examples of the kind of things which should be avoided by the Americans.

Dont expose yourself totally in the eyes of your agent personnel. If you do, they get tired of you rather quickly.

Don't try to sell dog meat while you have lamb's head hung outside. This Is an old Chinese saying which makes sense. In other words, what you say youou actually do should always matcpl

Don't expect too much loyalty from the Korean agentou yourself are giving him too little of your loyalty.ike friendship, is reciprocal.

Dont criticize your fellow American members of the rganisation, Including your predecessor and superiors, to yourorean men. They will think of youow character of repulsive nature.

5 Dont try to enforce the channel of command to your men while you yourself are violating the very same thing. Dont let anyone else touch your men. and at the same time don't try to give orders to somebody else's men without going through him.

ft. Dont talk too much. The more you talk, the less they may think of you.

s ont eat popcorn on the street, chew gum during seri-ous conversation, or blow your nose at the table.

ont use your men for anything other than what you are paying themnow of several cases where agentersonnel were used for all-around household duties and sofar less in their main work.

refer any pending decisions to yourof your men. Once your men know that there Iselse who la making decisions for you, you may as welland turn the operations over to someone else.

with your men. but don't go near thembecause In that state you will lose all respect that you

i may have enjoyed up to thatecall one security who used to check the guard posts when he was In suchW- lion that he" couldrnadc^utughlng^

stock of himself.

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