It was late afternoon, a Wednesday in September, and Colonel Vasily Petrov of the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service sat in his New York office and stared at the red envelope on his mahogany desk. On the envelope’s flap was a wax seal, also red.
The envelope arrived from Moscow an hour before on the Aeroflot flight that carried the daily diplomatic pouch to the Russian Federation Mission to the United Nations on East 67th Street.
Petrov went to his window and stared down into the street. He hadn’t liked New York City when he’d first arrived four months before. It was too hot and there were too many Africans, Asians, Arabs, and Jews in this city. But now, in September, the weather had cooled. As for the cherznozhopie—the blackasses—they didn’t seem to bother him as much.
What still bothered him, however, was being followed every minute of every day. The American security services knew who he was, of course, and they gave him little opportunity to do his job outside of his office. Well, they could follow him all they wanted. On Sunday he would lose them and they would not even know they had lost him. And then he could do his job. Operation Zero.
He was officially assigned to the United Nations for two years, and he could have tolerated that. But in fact, his posting was coming to an end on Monday. As was the City of New York.
(Radiant Angel, Nelson DeMille, pages 3-6)
If I wanted to see assholes all day, I would have become a proctologist. Instead, I watch assholes for my country.
I was parked in a black Chevy Blazer down the street from the Russian Federal Mission to the United Nations on East 67th Street in Manhattan, waiting for an asshole named Vasily Petrov to appear. Petrov is a colonel in the Russian Foreign Intelligence service—the SVR in Russian—which is the equivalent to our CIA, and the successor to the Soviet KGB. Vasily—who we have affectionately code-named Vaseline, because he’s slippery—has diplomatic status as Deputy Representative to the United Nations for Human Rights Issues, which is a joke because his real job is SVR Legal Resident in New York—the equivalent of a CIA Station Chief. I have had Colonel Petrov under the eye on previous occasions, and though I’ve never met him he’s reported to be a very dangerous man, and thus an asshole.
I’m John Corey, by the way, former NYPD homicide detective, now working for the Federal government as a contract agent. My NYPD career was cut short by three bullets which left me seventy-five percent disabled (twenty-five percent per bullet?) for retirement pay purposes. In fact, there’s nothing wrong with me physically, though the mental health exam for this job was a bit of a challenge.
Anyway, sitting next to me behind the wheel was a young lady whom I’d worked with before, Tess Faraday. Tess was maybe early thirties, auburn hair, tall, trim, and attractive. Also in the SUV, looking over my shoulder, was my wife, Kate Mayfield, who was actually in Washington, but I could feel her presence. If you know what I mean.
Tess asked me, “Do I have time to go to the john, John?”
She thought that was funny.
(Radiant Angel, Nelson DeMille, pages 9-11, emphasis added)
Hanssen in 2001
|Born||Robert Philip Hanssen
April 18, 1944 (age 72)
Chicago, Illinois, United States
|Other names||Ramon Garcia, Jim Baker, G. Robertson, Graysuit, “B”|
|Occupation||Former FBI agent and spy for the Soviet Union and later the Russian Federation|
Robert Philip Hanssen (born April 18, 1944) is a former U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agent who spied for Soviet and Russian intelligence services against the United States for twenty-two years from 1979 to 2001. He is currently serving 15 consecutive life sentences at ADX Florence, a federal supermax prison near Florence, Colorado.
Hanssen was arrested on February 18, 2001, at Foxstone Park near his home in Vienna, Virginia, and was charged with selling U.S. secrets to the Soviet Union and subsequently the Russian Federation for more than US$1.4 million in cash and diamonds over a 22-year period.
On July 6, 2001, he pleaded guilty to 15 counts of espionage in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. He was sentenced to 15 life terms without the possibility of parole. His activities have been described by the Department of Justice‘s Commission for the Review of FBI Security Programs as “possibly the worst intelligence disaster in U.S. history”.
Atlantic Avenue–Barclays Center is a New York City Subway station complex shared by the BMT Fourth Avenue Line, the BMT Brighton Line and the IRT Eastern Parkway Line, located at Atlantic, Fourth, and Flatbush Avenues and Pacific Street in Downtown Brooklyn. The complex is served by the:
- 2, 4, D, N, Q and R trains at all times
- 3 train at all times except late nights
- 5 and B trains weekdays only
With nine subway services, this station is second to the Times Square–42nd Street/Port Authority Bus Terminal complex in offering the most transfers to other services.
In June 2009, the MTA sold the naming rights of the station complex to Forest City Ratner Companies for 20 years at $200,000 per year, one of the few such renames in the system (Willets Point–Shea Stadium, in Queens, was another example of a station with such naming rights, until the MTA simply renamed it to Mets–Willets Point following Shea Stadium‘s demolition). Barclays Center, whose naming rights were bought by Barclays Bank, opened September 2012 and is part of Forest City Ratner Companies’ Pacific Park project. As a result, the station was renamed from Atlantic Avenue/Pacific Street to Atlantic Avenue–Barclays Center in May 2012. A new mezzanine and fare control area was built near the sports complex. Following this rename and the addition of a new exit, the MTA has considered selling the naming rights of other subway stations.
SE corner of Pacific Street and Fourth Avenue. customers should use Pacific Street elevator
At Hanson Place and Flatbush Avenue. and LIRR customers should use Hanson Place elevator)
|Connection to Atlantic Terminal|
[Barclay’s Center boat—ship—Atlantic Avenue side; Geico entrance is on the Flatbush Avenue side:]
The western entrance of Barclays Center, taken from the corner of Atlantic Avenue and Flatbush Avenue.
Barclays Center is a multi-purpose indoor arena in the New York City borough of Brooklyn. It sits partially on a platform over the Metropolitan Transportation Authority(MTA)-owned Vanderbilt Yards rail yard at Atlantic Avenue for the Long Island Rail Road (LIRR). It is part of a $4.9 billion future business and residential complex now known as Pacific Park.
The site is located adjacent to the renamed Atlantic Avenue–Barclays Center subway station on the 2 3 4 5 B Q D N R routes, as well as directly above the LIRR‘s Atlantic Terminal. The arena is currently home to the Brooklyn Nets of the National Basketball Association and the New York Islanders of the National Hockey League. The arena also hosts concerts, conventions and other sporting and entertainment events. The arena competes with other facilities in the New York metropolitan area, including Madison Square Garden in Manhattan and Prudential Center in Newark. The arena and the Brooklyn Nets are owned by Mikhail Prokhorov‘s American holdings.
Prokhorov in September 2013
|Born||Mikhail Dmitrievitch Prokhorov
3 May 1965 (age 51)
Moscow, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union
Mikhail Dmitrievitch Prokhorov (Russian: Михаи́л Дми́триевич Про́хоров; IPA: [mʲɪxɐˈil ˈdmʲitrʲɪjɪvʲɪtɕ ˈproxərəf]; born 3 May 1965) is a Russian billionaire, politician, and owner of the American basketball team the Brooklyn Nets. After graduating from the Moscow Finance Institute, he worked in the financial sector and subsequently went on to become one of Russia’s leading industrialists, owning major stakes in multinational corporations in the precious metals sector. While he was running Norilsk Nickel, the company became the world’s largest producer of nickel and palladium. He is the former chairman of Polyus Gold, Russia’s largest gold producer, and the former President of Onexim Group. He resigned both positions to enter politics in June 2011.
In December 2011, Prokhorov capped a year of higher-profile political activity in Russia with the December declaration that he would run as an independent candidate in the 2012 Russian presidential election. He was third in the voting, amassing 7.94% of the total vote. In June 2012 he declared the establishment of the new Russian political party called the “Party of Civic Platform”. As of 2014, Forbes estimates his wealth at $10.9 billion.
Tess took a right onto a small road and continued past a sign that said SHINNECOCK NATION—NO TRESPASSING.
I pointed out, “You’re in Indian territory.”
“We’re meeting here. For a powwow.”
“Okay.” The FBI, as I indicated, could be a bit dull, but these people—and I don’t mean the Indians—were into drama and stagecraft.
The road was narrow, bumpy, and dark, and Tess slowed down. She said to me, apropos of nothing and something, “The charter of the Central Intelligence Agency expressly forbids the Agency from operating on American soil. Therefore, as you know, when the CIA has a person of interest who lands on American soil, they have to share the case with the FBI. The FBI, on the other hand, can legally operate in foreign countries.” She reminded me, “You, for instance, and your wife were posted to Yemen.”
I didn’t recall telling her that. But I did recall Yemen. And I knew why she mentioned it. And now I thought I knew who this old friend was. So I slipped my Glock out of my pancake holster and stuck it in my pocket.
I inquired, “Is there a point to this monologue?”
She went on, “The CIA, as with any similar organization, is reluctant to share or turn over important information or important suspects to another agency.”
“Reluctant might be an understatement.”
“So,” she continued, “the CIA has to find ways to operate freely and legally on American soil.” She informed me, “Sometimes, if the suspect is a foreign diplomat, they will work with State Department Intelligence, and most times they will work with the FBI.” She reminded me, “The Anti-Terrorist Task Force, for instance, has several CIA officers attached to the task force.” She prompted, “I believe you knew one or two of them.”
“Right.” My wife actually killed one of them. And probably slept with that asshole, Ted Nash, before she and I were married. But it wasn’t a crime of passion; it was self-defense. Or so it was ruled. But the CIA thought otherwise and they have long memories, as I found out in Yemen. And maybe as I was about to find out here.
Ms. Faraday continued,”In this case, the person of interest, Colonel Vasily Petrov, is a diplomat. And who is it that is watching Vasily the most closely?”
She ignored my wit and answered her own question. “Your group.The DSG.”
I kind of understood all this oblique baloney—Petrov was a person of interest to the CIA and to the State Department Intelligence and they were sharing the case to give the CIA legal cover in the U.S. And my group, the Diplomatic Surveillance Group, would be a convenient and well-placed ally. But rather than ask us for help, the CIA or SDI penetrated the Diplomatic Surveillance Group with one of their people. And, viola! Tess Faraday was my trainee. I asked her, “So are you CIA or SDI?”
“Does it matter who I’m working for?”
“Why am I asking?”
“It’s better for both of us if you didn’t know. In case you are asked later.”
“Right.” I asked another question. “What do you need from me?”
“Well, as it turns out, you set the wheels in motion to find Petrov, and Captain Kalish, who has lots of resources, is working well with you.”
“So I’m the front guy.”
“You’re the go-to-guy.” She stopped the Blazer on a lonely stretch of road and glanced at the dashboard clock. “And you’re very bight.”
I ignored that and asked her, “What is it that Petrov is suspected of?”
“What do you think?”
“Well, as you probably know, he’s an evil James Bond with license to kill.”
“I know that.”
“Good.” So, as it turns out, my instincts were correct; I had stumbled onto something big. Something that the CIA and State Department Intelligence were on to, and might or might not be sharing with the FBI. Also, my instincts about Tess Faraday were correct; she wasn’t who she said she was. She was, in fact, a plant—sort of like a parasite that attached itself to the Diplomatic Surveillance Group. Well, that might be a little harsh. Also, I was relieved that she wasn’t with the FBI Office of Professional Responsibility. The CIA, I could handle. And, finally, I was a little pissed off.
I don’t know why I cared, but I asked her, “Tell me about your legend.”
She didn’t reply for a few seconds, then said, “I’m not actually a lawyer, but it fit the requirement for me to be an FBI aspirant.” She confided, “I was a little concerned about that. You’re married to a lawyer, and professions are hard to fake.”
“Not if you’re a lawyer. They fake it every day.”
(Radiant Angel, Nelson DeMille, pages 83-85)
“I’m unarmed,” declared Buck Harris as he held out his hands where I could see them.“I’m not.”He stepped closer to me and inquired, “Will you shake hands with me?”Why don’t I just kick you in the [testicles]?”“I sense some anger, John.”Tess interjected,”Whatever issues you both think you need to settle will have to wait.” She reminded me, “The mission comes first.”I didn’t know I was on a mission. I was on a [expletive]-up surveillance. But I guess Tess and Buck were on a mission.I stared at Buck Harris in the moonlight. He still looked good for a man in his seventies, though he was pale compared to the last time I saw him with his Yemen tan.Buck Harris was an old Cold Warrior, a left-over from the days when all we had to worry about was nuclear annihilation. He was, I had to admit, a charming gentleman when he wasn’t plotting to get me killed.
He said to me, on that subject, “You may have misinterpreted what happened in Yemen.”
“Hey, I never thought of that,” I said, partly for Tess’s benefit, “So even though it looked to me like you and your CIA buddy were trying to get me, Kate, and Brenner whacked, we got it all wrong. Please accept my apology.”
“You haven’t lost any of your sardonic wit.”
“And my aim is still good.”
Tess said, “I think you two need to speak alone.” She looked at me. “Just listen and decide.” She turned and walked toward the bay.
So Buck and I were alone. Maybe. I asked him. “Anyone with you?”
“If you lie, you die.”
“You have my word.”
“Me too,” I nodded toward Tess.”Who is she?”
“She’s not CIA if that’s your concern.” He tapped his side pocket. “I can show you her credentials.”
“Nice and easy, Buck.”
He slipped his hand into his pocket and pulled out a cred case.
“Toss it.” He pitched it to me and I glanced at the open case in the dim light. I could make out her photo and name, Tess Faraday, and also the State Department seal. This meant nothing, of course—spooks carry whatever creds they need, and Buck understood I wasn’t fond of the CIA, or vice versa. In fact, the Agency considered me—and Kate—unfinished business.
I put Tess’s creds in my pocket and said to Buck, “Turn around, hands against that tree, legs spread.”
He complied without complaint and I frisked him. In this business, when you declare you’re unarmed, you better be unarmed, or the conversation is over. “Turn around.”
He turned around, reclaimed his dignity, and took in his surroundings. “This is an appropriate place for a pow-wow. We will smoke the peace pipe and bury the tomahawk.”
“I’d like to bury it in your [expletive] head.”
“You’re not getting into the spirit of this place, John.”
“Tell me why I shouldn’t kill you.”
“Because you need to hear what I have to say about Colonel Petrov.”
“You have three minutes.”
(Radiant Angel, Nelson DeMille, pages 92-94)
to be continued
http://nelsondemille.net/books/radiant-angel/ [mushroom cloud]
Roof was arrested on Thursday on suspicion of killing nine worshipers, including a Democratic state senator who served as a pastor, at the historic black Emanuel AME church in Charleston. Roof has since been held without bond on murder charges.
BRENT BROWN TOYOTA SCION [Salt Lake City, Utah]