Do Not Read This – NOT For Public Release

Why? Because this contains information, facts, tactics that liberals don’t want revealed. Deep rooted strategies that involve treason, sedition, even the death of patriots rather than truthful, productive and meaningful interactions of worth and value. Do I lie? How many needed and respected law enforcement officials have been ambushed and killed? How many politically involved opponents or citizens attacked, murdered in the name of radical leftist views. How many lives destroyed for the sake of recusant, partisan agendas?

Liberals operate in the shadows of deceit. They hide under cover of confusion, accusations and false narratives in order to bind together those who hate and wish to destroy. Their long history and secrets obscured and concealed to aid in the completion of their calamitous mandate. Many have ranted and rallied about impeachment but warn their candidates not to mention it for the truthful fear of their intentions’ damage to their campaigns.

The progression of America’s decline was decidedly slowed with the election of Donald J. Trump. However, with the election of Hillary Clinton, the future of America, our laws, our safety, economy and our governance as a free and independent country could well have continued to be in jeopardy.

SOCIALISTS INVADING AMERICA?  GOING MAINSTREAM?

During the last 8 years in particular, we’ve seen our rights take wing on birds away during hunting season, and heard our slide into the dark abyss of socialism resound like the scratch of rat claws in the stone walls of our existence.

Used with permission of the artist

Liberal leaders correlate lies with truth, and their twisted agendas with reasonable policies, and merge their efforts in order to affect a new America NOT  envisioned by our founding fathers.  The Democratic party of your fathers and grandfathers is not the party of today’s liberalized, radicalized politicians.

The Democrats have morphed into Democratic Socialism.
The Democratic Socialists are moving toward Progressivism.
Progressives are slowly but systematically moving toward Marxist Socialism
Full Socialists are on their march to Communism.

The likelihood that young people become the embodiment of their influences is reasonable and significant. It’s happened over time, was furthered during the radical 60’s and continues today supported by the likes of Soros and others who encourage a violent, destructive, anti-American defiance. Intransigence designed to eradicate freedom.

The more openly, full on attack on America was furthered with the election of B. Hussein Obama, whose upbringing was filtered and honed through the teachings of Saul Alinski, and calamitous beliefs of Cloward and Piven. His understanding of life, his views of oppression and exercising government will and influence on the people came, in part, from a Communist sympathizer known as Frank Marshall Davis; a subject of FBI interest and investigation for 19 years.

The line separating opposition views is blurred, yet distinct. Davis wrote: ““I worked with all kinds of groups.  I made no distinction between those labeled Communist, Socialist or merely liberal.” But the FBI record of Davis contains what is reported to be his Communist Party identification number: #47544 (obtained from a “highly confidential source”).

Obama’s has his own involvement with the insurgent Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), a Socialist organization moving in a revolutionary Marxist direction. In the 60’s, SDS was joined by the Progressive Labor Party (PLP), a self-styled Marxist-Leninist-Maoist party, dedicated to implementing communist ideology. In January, 1996, Barack Obama formally joined the New Party, which was deeply hostile to the mainstream of the Democratic Party and even to American capitalism.

Are Socialists invading America? The Socialist presence was openly displayed with the campaign of Bernie Sanders. A political wannabe that did virtually nothing and collected no steady paycheck till he was 40. At that time being elected mayor of a VT town and proudly proclaiming he was the “only Socialist Mayor in the United States,” his socialistic “everything free for everyone” beliefs resonated with America’s youth who supported him from the basements of their parents’ homes during 2016.

And again, Socialism is proudly displayed as a badge of honor, a placard of qualification from Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, A NYC candidate for Congress under the banner of Socialism. A true believer and anti-American, anti-capitalist wanting to give everything free to anyone sitting on their ass in the park with their hands outstretched to receive the unearned freebies of society.

There was this from Ocasio-Cortez: “Capitalism has not always existed in the world and will not always exist in the world.” Actually, capitalism has pretty much always existed. When Jesus chased the money changers from the temple, they weren’t there giving money away. People have been trading since there was something to trade. “The market economy, contrary to what you might have heard, has existed since the caves,” writes Deirdre McCloskey in “Bourgeois Dignity.”

Ocasio-Cortez summarizes the principle of the Democratic Socialists of America, of which she is a member: “No person in America should be too poor to live.” And her big complaint on the economy? She credits [or blames] the low unemployment figures because… “Well, unemployment is low because everyone has two jobs.” No. That would make sense if the unemployment rate were calculated by asking businesses whether their jobs were filled. But instead BLS uses the household survey, which asks people whether they have a job. The answer is “yes” whether you work one job or ten.

My point in all this and my warning…if you love America, if you fear for her future, know that these people vehemently believe and bolster their destructive rhetoric. They loudly proclaim factless rants, for their game plan is not based on patriotism and truth. Their goals are not good for America and Americans. They want only societal elements aimed at increasing their own voter base, their own power position, their own enriched futures as ruling tyrants and dictators.

The ever-growing presence of socialistic endeavors is evidenced on our political landscape by the screaming, demanding masses yearning to breathe free, eat free, live free and to be free to do whatever, whenever, wherever for personal reasons free from consequences.

Ask yourself… Are these the goals to improve and protect America? Or a select few and for what reasoning? Goals such as:

  • Eliminate borders opening our country to anyone and everyone regardless of the past or plans for their crime-filled futures.
  • Eliminate any immigration barriers thereby allowing a lifelong flood of Democratic/Socialistic voters eliminating the opposition party (conservatives).
  • Eliminate ICE, the agency, not mandated to separate families, but to seek and hunt down and deport those who choose to do us harm. (ICE stats
  • Giving sanctuary to criminal elements in the name of “social justice” and “equality” at the expense, and peril, of society.
  • Raise taxes even more on those who, while creating wealth for themselves, also create jobs and wealth for millions more.
  • Give away everything as an entitlement like healthcare, education, housing, food, public services…all ultimately paid for by those who have something left of their own hard earned money; till they run out of money to support the whining masses.
  • Hand out justice not based on the law, but by whatever social, economic or political class you align yourself with.
  • They promote the tenets of Socialism for the collective good, not as a reward to those who actually work hard and produce.
  • The diminishment of privacy both in private lives and in surreptitious operations of the government.

The main goal of a socialist system is to shift the means of production from private hands, or to regulate it, by the power and authority of the “community.” Socialism espouses the common good and access to all services and resources by ALL citizens. In an archetypal socialistic society everyone is equal; all have equal voice and equal access. This is not to say that there are no different economic classes or groups, just that all pay according to their ability so that all can share equally (seems some are more equal than others). Just remember Obama’s prime job… Community Organizer.

Or as Karl Marx said: “In a higher phase of communist society, after the enslaving subordination of the individual to the division of labor, and therewith also the antithesis between mental and physical labor, has vanished; after labor has become not only a means of life but life’s prime want; after the productive forces have also increased with the all-around development of the individual, and all the springs of co-operative wealth flow more abundantly—only then can the narrow horizon of bourgeois right be crossed in its entirety and society inscribe on its banners: From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs,

Be aware, for as your “ability” to contribute increases due to your own hard work and worth, the “needs” of the masses will demand them and the government or community will gladly take them. Doubt my warning? Here’s the bombshell:  of those queried, four out of 10 adults said they preferred socialism to capitalism and some cities and states are offering “guaranteed” incomes to attract residents.

This is an alert, a wake up call, a warning to what’s happening right under our own allegorical and patriotic noses. This is a revelation of the revolution to come; goals and potential harm to be caused to us all should we not be aware enough, not prepared enough to keep our country as it was designed.

As a writer, I find history, past and yet to come, as fascinating endeavors and yet would be more interested in researching and documenting more positive things. But as long as we live in our current times, the awareness of conditions and changes to our well conceived, solidly founded republic need to be portrayed on the pages of as many websites and publications as possible. Pass these words to your friends and join the informed resistance of the onslaught against us.

@VideoRon

RB ~

A CIA Insider Talks

Those famous words of Ronald Reagan were never more true:

“The most terrifying words in the English language are: I’m from the government and I’m here to help.”

When originally spoken, many will relate this quote’s initial intention to social situations of taxation, entitlement control and more social issues. However, it’s become evident that the government – once thought to primarily exist for our protection – has turned bare toothed on its citizenry with a more aggressive, subversive agenda of diabolical proportions.

Alphabet agencies wreaking havoc on the public, the country, and even its own, as we we’ll soon reveal. The dishonesty, the lies, corruptions, yea the treason, is running rampant through every office and orifice in our governing bodies and if not for those speaking out, we’d all be un or misinformed.

In my series of “Insiders,”  I’m pleased to talk next with a former CIA operative. Someone who saw not only the inside, but the dirty wrath of an agency gone amuck.

Verne Lyon-CIA:  Recruited first as a student, Lyon operated as a CIA agent in the 1960s and 1970s. While operating under deep cover Lyon engaged in domestic spying on antiwar Iowa State University students. Codenamed Operation CHAOS, the CIA launched the illegal program against U.S. citizens. Lyon was also involved in destabilizing operations in Cuba. He also worked in Peru, Chile and Mexico. Lyon wrote in a 1990 article in Covert Action Information Bulletin, “The CIA must be put in its place. Should we demand or allow anything less, we will remain vulnerable to these abuses and face the risk of decaying into a lawless state destined to self-destruction.”

This is a first hand account from Verne and his book dealing with sensitive activities perpetrated illegally on the American public. Some of his answers are short as some information is sensitive to his life, his past, the agency, and, at times, a short explanation is all that’s required. We’re grateful for the opinions he can share at this time. Verne offers this expose’ as a foundation for domestic spying.

RB ~  Verne, you’ve led a life whose tale is the basis of spy novels and horror stories; Attempted abductions and assassination, prosecutions. You found a passion for aviation at a young age but then made, or were seduced, into a left turn into an intelligence career. We know it started when you were approached by the CIA to spy on antiwar activities at Iowa State. How did they find and pick you for their Operation CHAOS?

Verne Lyon

Image courtesy of Verne Lyon

VL~ I believe I was approached after a high school/college friend of mine went into Naval Intelligence. He told me he had talked to “some people” about me.  The job of spying on campus anti-war activities paid $300 a month and came with a guaranteed draft deferment. For over fifteen years, the CIA, with assistance from numerous government agencies, conducted a massive illegal domestic covert operation called Operation CHAOS. It was one of the largest and most pervasive domestic surveillance programs in the history of this country. Throughout the duration of CHAOS, the CIA spied on thousands of U.S. citizens. The CIA went to great lengths to conceal this operation from the public while every president from Eisenhower to Nixon exploited CHAOS for his own political ends.

After I signed the documents getting into their “student program,” I asked if university officials knew of their work on campus. They said yes but admonished me to keep this to myself. Apparently some officials at Iowa State not only knew of the CIA recruiting on campus but actually suggested names of select students to approach. Nobody mentioned that the work I just signed up for was illegal at worst and immoral at best. [1]

RB ~ You, like myself, grew up in a small midwestern town but found yourself directed to greater intrigue in your life. How did you take to this move up the status ladder working for a large int’l intelligence agency and did your views of a “worthwhile, needed and valuable gov’t agency soon change?”

VL~   I found it to be almost a dream at the first. Being a secret agent, paid undercover, part of the government’s inner decision making circle, etc. As time went on I became more skeptical with each passing day.

RB ~ Was this domestic spying expanded?

VL ~ As campus anti-war protest activity spread across the nation, the CIA reacted by implementing two new domestic operations. The first, Project RESISTANCE, was designed to provide security to CIA recruiters on college campuses. Under this program, the CIA sought active cooperation from college administrators, campus security, and local police to help identify anti-war activists, political dissidents, and “radicals.” Eventually information was provided to all government recruiters on college campuses and directly to the super-secret DOD on thousands of students and dozens of groups. The CIA’s Office of Security also created Project MERRIMAC, to provide warnings about demonstrations being carried out against CIA facilities or personnel in the Washington area

RB ~ This must have taken a lot of local resources to gather and review “information and activities” on so many people

VL ~ Under both Projects, the CIA infiltrated agents into domestic groups of all types and activities. It used its contacts with local police departments and their intelligence units to pick up its “police skills” and began in earnest to pull off burglaries, illegal entries, use of explosives, criminal frame-ups, shared interrogations, and disinformation. CIA teams purchased sophisticated equipment for many starved police departments and in return got to see arrest records, suspect lists, and intelligence reports. Many large police departments, in conjunction with the CIA, carried out illegal, warrantless searches of private properties, to provide intelligence for a report requested by President Johnson and later entitled “Restless Youth.[1]

RB ~ How much information was gathered and wasn’t this illegal?

VL ~ During the life of Operation CHAOS, the CIA had compiled personality files on over 13,000 individuals including more than 7,000 U.S. citizens as well as files on over 1,000 domestic groups. The CIA had shared information on more than 300,000 persons with different law enforcement agencies including the DIA and FBI. It had spied on, burglarized, intimidated, misinformed, lied to, deceived, and carried out criminal acts against thousands of citizens of the United States. It had placed itself above the law, above the Constitution, and in contempt of international diplomacy and the United States Congress.

RB ~ How ominous did it become when you found the agency who had you spy on Americans was now going after you by framing you for an airport bombing, chasing you to Canada to have you kidnapped and ultimately tracking you to Lima, Peru, bring you back for trial and sentencing you to 17 years in Leavenworth for that bombing? Yuri Totrov, former KGB counter intelligence officer says. “Verne Lyon’s story so shocked me that I hoped he would one day make it public.”

VL~   It was as if the weight of the world had fallen on my shoulders. I felt hopeless, betrayed, angry.

RB ~ “Eyes on Havana,” your revealing book, has the tag line “Memoir of an American Spy Betrayed by the CIA.” The title alone has a foreboding, gloomy aire about it. You talk about “the transformation of a young patriotic engineer…into the second class citizens I am today; a convicted felon who has survived fear, prosecution, and utter collapse of my dreams…” Are you able to realize at lease some of your dreams and goals?

VL~  I have become an accomplished pilot, although my aerospace engineering education was never used to its fullest, I did work as an engineer for a number of years.

Image courtesy of Verne Lyon

RB ~ In your book you say “…Things went from bad to worse and pitted three government agencies against each other and against me in games of cat and mouse around the globe.”[1] From an agency you wanted to dedicate yourself to, this must have been a shock.

VL ~ My two-day trial, the jury’s brief deliberations and the judge’s stern sentence. Seventeen Years, I heard him say. You shall be remanded to a Federal Penitentiary for 17 years. My freedom, my youth my wife, my son all disappeared in those words.[1]

RB ~ Did your overseas positions add any different perspective to your overall view of national security – both foreign and domestic until your apprehension in Peru and return to the states?

VL~  Having traveled to over 100 countries, I much appreciate the views of peoples and cultures  abroad. To best understand the geo/political problems of the USA, you must travel overseas to understand how the rest of the world views us and why.

RB ~ Today we see such a pervasiveness of corruption in the higher levels of leadership. In the early days, was there more of a separation between national security and politics? The line seems very blurry these days.

VL~   The difference between the two was always blurred. Higher ups in the CIA helped write both foreign and domestic policy instead of just providing intelligence.

RB ~ It used to be we never thought of much except who’s playing Friday night at the high school, where’s lunch after church on Sundays, but now… it’s the gov’t in our face, the IRS after our records, the NSA storing emails and phone numbers and the CIA doing who knows what. Did this really need to get to the level it is with normal everyday patriotic Americans?

VL~  It is where it is due to the rapid, uncontrolled expansion of technology in communications, satellites, social media, news from every corner of the world within a few minutes, the internet, hacking, etc. Our society as well as most governments live in the NOW and want to respond at once to news, etc. After 911, we all gave up personal  freedoms for security and the Patriot Act which the government exploits to the max.

RB ~  People used to think that national security meant protecting us from foreign entities bent on our destruction. But then talk of special phone equipment rooms in San Francisco surfaced with connections to the government and that huge collection facility in Camp Williams, Utah came to light. People couldn’t believe their eyes. How were explanations handled internally about such domestic activities? Was it common knowledge that the government in general was now in the data collection/citizen surveillance business?

VL~   I think that Edward Snowden, now living in exile in Russia, showed us how pervasive the government is in gathering all kinds of intelligence on the average citizen.

RB ~  Was Snowden a traitor or a hero?

VL~  Borderline hero

RB ~ While surveilling citizens with ties to terrorists should warrant close examination, can’t John Doe and his parents be left alone in peace? (AKA James Rosen from FOX News?) Has the CIA become more involved in domestic activities?

VL~ The line dividing the domain between the FBI’s former exclusive powers to do domestic spying and the CIA’s mandate to handle everything beyond the borders has become so blurred that the NSA’s collection of date from both actually negates separation of powers.

RB ~ You said in a 1990 article in Covert Action Information Bulletin, “The CIA must be put in its place. Should we demand or allow anything less, we will remain vulnerable to these abuses and face the risk of decaying into a lawless state destined to self-destruction.” Are we seeing that thought in spades these days? Lyon

VL ~  We thought that the East German STASI was the embodiment of George Orwell’s 1984 but we have achieved that status here at home now.

RB ~ You’ve been quoted as saying “The CIA is a state sponsored terrorist association. You don’t look at people as human beings. They’re nothing but pieces on a chessboard.” Was this scary concept surprising to you as you worked more and more in the agency?

VL~   The Agency’s view of the world was divided into spheres of influence where, at times, operations pitted one country or area against others for our benefit. The effects on the ordinary people were ignored for the goal of the greater good.

RB ~ Average Americans think about this data collection and that domestic spying should be spending time, money and resources chasing bad guys in Yemen, Iran or Syria, not worrying about some conversation or email between a guy and his grandmother. Are there other hidden reasonings behind collecting so much private and inconsequential information about non-threats within the country? Maybe political?

VL~  Certainly politics always has a role in what type of intelligence is collected and from whom. With today’s technology that allows us and foreign nations to encrypt private communications, the race to stay ahead of the curve out weighs the concerns for people’s rights.

RB ~ Is the invasion of our privacy “rights” (and maybe I’m using the term loosely) growing out of control, or has the presence of Trump in the oval office stemmed the tide of intrusion into our lives?

VL~   Basically and simply – No

RB ~  For most of us, the Clinton’s have been on the highway of free rides since the 80’s, bypassing every legal stop sign and prosecution toll booth in their path as they speedily wind their way toward fame and riches – mostly infamous riches. Everything they touch seems to be laden with bi-chromatic fingerprint dust and the blood of innocents mixed with confusion. With the questionable death of Seth Rich and other DNC maneuvering, for whose benefit and for what purpose? Was Rich to receive the blame for the hacking but wanted to prove otherwise?

VL~ Investigation, NO enforcement

RB ~  Is the CIA capable of assisting or independently pursuing “political crimes” to bring about justice to those involved in all this current Clinton/DNC/State Dept./intelligence corruption, or should they be more an investigative, enforcement force against more traditional crimes? Or is there really a difference anymore?

VL~   Dem’s vs Republicans – too political.

RB ~ Is enough finally being done to investigate and dig into these email scandals and schemes? Seems like 2 intelligence groups would be more efficient given the foreign component of things.

VL ~  More open but still restrictive

RB ~ And as a follow up, are the lines of communication between the FBI, CIA and NSA now more open than before, or is interagency pride and elitism keeping them from working together efficiently?

VL~     It’s all politics

RB ~  Did you in your wildest intelligence dreams ever think that a major political party could invade the sanctity of our election process by creating false documents, use them to smear an opposition candidate before an election, then use them to assault the privacy of his closest confidants, using them to corrupt the privacy process of the FISA system, all while the long term goal of removing a duly elected president loomed in the back of their destructive playbook?

VL~  Since FISA courts (hearings) are held in secret, much like grand jury hearings, the prosecutor usually controls the hearing and the court will go along with the prosecution’s request 99% of the time so its use is always, in my view, political. The fact that the election process can be corrupted to the degree that it has been is just another example of politics over-ruling facts. Its sad to see its degradation to the point that politics has apparently removed all fairness to the process.

RB ~ Knowing you weren’t there then, but has John Brennan stepped over the line of reason? Is his lying and anti-patriotic, partisan views a change or was it always there, hidden from public view?

VL~ Political leanings always influence decision and actions

RB ~ Did the decision to become so outspoken come easy given your patriotism and seeing the need for truth, or was it a life changing moment with thoughts of reprisals and long term career and personal ramifications?

VL~ I needed to tell the truth

RB ~  With Alexis, Echo, TVs with cameras, home security Wi-Fi cameras, Google phones tracking our every move and refrigerators knowing what we buy  and how we shop, are we living totally exposed with our non-private lives open to become fodder for anyone willing to review, sell or track?

VL~  We allow this for the sole sake of convenience

RB ~ With so many problems and scandals related to political corruption, spying on citizens, immigration, local communities and states opting out of abiding by federal law….are we losing America?

VL~  Its already lost and there is no real way back.

RB ~ And with all the action and complications of a government intelligence / law enforcement position, what was that one fun, rewarding, passionate moment you remember from your whole career?

VL~      Understanding that the world is not our enemy we don’t need to invent enemies.

 

Our thanks to Verne for his time, his service to our country and thoughts, and to his co-author, Professor Phil Zwerling for their input into this book and this article.  This and my other “insider” articles go to the question of whether we can truly trust our own government and their real intentions in their attempt to protect us.

Whistleblowers exist for a reason… to spread the truth of what’s behind the curtain and alert us to wrongdoings that affect our lives, our futures.

This article is just the beginning. You’ll find a fascinating read on the intrigue of Verne’s CIA life and adventures in the US, Cuba and beyond in his book, “Eyes on Havana.” I can’t recommend enough its addition to your reading shelf. It’s an eye opening revelation of what lengths the government will go to destroying policies, laws and lives to get to their final nefarious objectives.

RB

Facts and opinions expressed are those of the interviewee and not necessarily
those of the author or talkamericaradio.us. Certain passages and quotes used with
permission from his book,"Eyes on Havana -Memoir of an American Spy Betrayed by the
CIA."

[1] Eyes on Havana- Verne Lyon & Phil Zwerling, McFarland Publishing
(January 12, 2018)

A CIA Insider reveals….

Those famous words of Ronald Reagan were never more true:

“The most terrifying words in the English language are: I’m from the government and I’m here to help.”

When originally spoken, many will relate this quote’s initial intention to social situations of taxation, entitlement control and more social issues. However, it’s become evident that the government – once thought to primarily exist for our protection – has turned bare toothed on its citizenry with a more aggressive, subversive agenda of diabolical proportions.

Alphabet agencies wreaking havoc on the public, the country, and even its own, as we we’ll soon reveal. The dishonesty, the lies, corruptions, yea the treason, is running rampant through every office and orifice in our governing bodies and if not for those speaking out, we’d all be un or misinformed.

In my series of “Insiders,”  I’m pleased to talk next with a former CIA operative. Someone who saw not only the inside, but the dirty wrath of an agency gone amuck.

Verne Lyon-CIA:  Recruited first as a student, Lyon operated as a CIA agent in the 1960s and 1970s. While operating under deep cover Lyon engaged in domestic spying on antiwar Iowa State University students. Codenamed Operation CHAOS, the CIA launched the illegal program against U.S. citizens. Lyon was also involved in destabilizing operations in Cuba. He also worked in Peru, Chile and Mexico. Lyon wrote in a 1990 article in Covert Action Information Bulletin, “The CIA must be put in its place. Should we demand or allow anything less, we will remain vulnerable to these abuses and face the risk of decaying into a lawless state destined to self-destruction.”

This is a first hand account from Verne and his book dealing with sensitive activities perpetrated illegally on the American public. Some of his answers are short as some information is sensitive to his life, his past, the agency, and, at times, a short explanation is all that’s required. We’re grateful for the opinions he can share at this time. Verne offers this expose’ as a foundation for domestic spying.

RB ~  Verne, you’ve led a life whose tale is the basis of spy novels and horror stories; Attempted abductions and assassination, prosecutions. You found a passion for aviation at a young age but then made, or were seduced, into a left turn into an intelligence career. We know it started when you were approached by the CIA to spy on antiwar activities at Iowa State. How did they find and pick you for their Operation CHAOS?

Image courtesy of Verne Lyon

VL~ I believe I was approached after a high school/college friend of mine went into Naval Intelligence. He told me he had talked to “some people” about me.  The job of spying on campus anti-war activities paid $300 a month and came with a guaranteed draft deferment. For over fifteen years, the CIA, with assistance from numerous government agencies, conducted a massive illegal domestic covert operation called Operation CHAOS. It was one of the largest and most pervasive domestic surveillance programs in the history of this country. Throughout the duration of CHAOS, the CIA spied on thousands of U.S. citizens. The CIA went to great lengths to conceal this operation from the public while every president from Eisenhower to Nixon exploited CHAOS for his own political ends.

After I signed the documents getting into their “student program,” I asked if university officials knew of their work on campus. They said yes but admonished me to keep this to myself. Apparently some officials at Iowa State not only knew of the CIA recruiting on campus but actually suggested names of select students to approach. Nobody mentioned that the work I just signed up for was illegal at worst and immoral at best. [1]

RB ~ You, like myself, grew up in a small midwestern town but found yourself directed to greater intrigue in your life. How did you take to this move up the status ladder working for a large int’l intelligence agency and did your views of a “worthwhile, needed and valuable gov’t agency soon change?”

VL~   I found it to be almost a dream at the first. Being a secret agent, paid undercover, part of the government’s inner decision making circle, etc. As time went on I became more skeptical with each passing day.

RB ~ Was this domestic spying expanded?

VL ~ As campus anti-war protest activity spread across the nation, the CIA reacted by implementing two new domestic operations. The first, Project RESISTANCE, was designed to provide security to CIA recruiters on college campuses. Under this program, the CIA sought active cooperation from college administrators, campus security, and local police to help identify anti-war activists, political dissidents, and “radicals.” Eventually information was provided to all government recruiters on college campuses and directly to the super-secret DOD on thousands of students and dozens of groups. The CIA’s Office of Security also created Project MERRIMAC, to provide warnings about demonstrations being carried out against CIA facilities or personnel in the Washington area

RB ~ This must have taken a lot of local resources to gather and review “information and activities” on so many people

VL ~ Under both Projects, the CIA infiltrated agents into domestic groups of all types and activities. It used its contacts with local police departments and their intelligence units to pick up its “police skills” and began in earnest to pull off burglaries, illegal entries, use of explosives, criminal frame-ups, shared interrogations, and disinformation. CIA teams purchased sophisticated equipment for many starved police departments and in return got to see arrest records, suspect lists, and intelligence reports. Many large police departments, in conjunction with the CIA, carried out illegal, warrantless searches of private properties, to provide intelligence for a report requested by President Johnson and later entitled “Restless Youth.[1]

RB ~ How much information was gathered and wasn’t this illegal?

VL ~ During the life of Operation CHAOS, the CIA had compiled personality files on over 13,000 individuals including more than 7,000 U.S. citizens as well as files on over 1,000 domestic groups. The CIA had shared information on more than 300,000 persons with different law enforcement agencies including the DIA and FBI. It had spied on, burglarized, intimidated, misinformed, lied to, deceived, and carried out criminal acts against thousands of citizens of the United States. It had placed itself above the law, above the Constitution, and in contempt of international diplomacy and the United States Congress.

RB ~ How ominous did it become when you found the agency who had you spy on Americans was now

going after you by framing you for an airport bombing, chasing you to Canada to have you kidnapped and ultimately tracking you to Lima, Peru, bring you back for trial and sentencing you to 17 years in Leavenworth for that bombing? Yuri Totrov, former KGB counter intelligence officer says. “Verne Lyon’s story so shocked me that I hoped he would one day make it public.”

VL~   It was as if the weight of the world had fallen on my shoulders. I felt hopeless, betrayed, angry.

RB ~ “Eyes on Havana,” your revealing book, has the tag line “Memoir of an American Spy Betrayed by the CIA.” The title alone has a foreboding, gloomy aire about it. You talk about “the transformation of a young patriotic engineer…into the second class citizens I am today; a convicted felon who has survived fear, prosecution, and utter collapse of my dreams…” Are you able to realize at lease some of your dreams and goals?

VL~  I have become an accomplished pilot, although my aerospace engineering education was never used to its fullest, I did work as an engineer for a number of years.

RB ~ In your book you say “…Things went from bad to worse and pitted three government agencies against each other and against me in games of cat and mouse around the globe.”[1] From an agency you wanted to dedicate yourself to, this must have been a shock.

VL ~ My two-day trial, the jury’s brief deliberations and the judge’s stern sentence. Seventeen Years, I heard him say. You shall be remanded to a Federal Penitentiary for 17 years. My freedom, my youth my wife, my son all disappeared in those words.[1]

RB ~ Did your overseas positions add any different perspective to your overall view of national security – both foreign and domestic until your apprehension in Peru and return to the states?

VL~  Having traveled to over 100 countries, I much appreciate the views of peoples and cultures  abroad. To best understand the geo/political problems of the USA, you must travel overseas to understand how the rest of the world views us and why.

RB ~ Today we see such a pervasiveness of corruption in the higher levels of leadership. In the early days, was there more of a separation between national security and politics? The line seems very blurry these days.

VL~   The difference between the two was always blurred. Higher ups in the CIA helped write both foreign and domestic policy instead of just providing intelligence.

RB ~ It used to be we never thought of much except who’s playing Friday night at the high school, where’s lunch after church on Sundays, but now… it’s the gov’t in our face, the IRS after our records, the NSA storing emails and phone numbers and the CIA doing who knows what. Did this really need to get to the level it is with normal everyday patriotic Americans?

VL~  It is where it is due to the rapid, uncontrolled expansion of technology in communications, satellites, social media, news from every corner of the world within a few minutes, the internet, hacking, etc. Our society as well as most governments live in the NOW and want to respond at once to news, etc. After 911, we all gave up personal  freedoms for security and the Patriot Act which the government exploits to the max.

RB ~  People used to think that national security meant protecting us from foreign entities bent on our destruction. But then talk of special phone equipment rooms in San Francisco surfaced with connections to the government and that huge collection facility in Camp Williams, Utah came to light. People couldn’t believe their eyes. How were explanations handled internally about such domestic activities? Was it common knowledge that the government in general was now in the data collection/citizen surveillance business?

VL~   I think that Edward Snowden, now living in exile in Russia, showed us how pervasive the government is in gathering all kinds of intelligence on the average citizen.

Eris Snowden Freedom of the Press Foundation/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY 4.0

RB ~  Was Snowden a traitor or a hero?

VL~  Borderline hero

RB ~ While surveilling citizens with ties to terrorists should warrant close examination, can’t John Doe and his parents be left alone in peace? (AKA James Rosen from FOX News?) Has the CIA become more involved in domestic activities?

VL~ The line dividing the domain between the FBI’s former exclusive powers to do domestic spying and the CIA’s mandate to handle everything beyond the borders has become so blurred that the NSA’s collection of date from both actually negates separation of powers.

RB ~ You said in a 1990 article in Covert Action Information Bulletin, “The CIA must be put in its place. Should we demand or allow anything less, we will remain vulnerable to these abuses and face the risk of decaying into a lawless state destined to self-destruction.” Are we seeing that thought in spades these days? Lyon

VL ~  We thought that the East German STASI was the embodiment of George Orwell’s 1984 but we have achieved that status here at home now.

RB ~ You’ve been quoted as saying “The CIA is a state sponsored terrorist association. You don’t look at people as human beings. They’re nothing but pieces on a chessboard.” Was this scary concept surprising to you as you worked more and more in the agency?

VL~   The Agency’s view of the world was divided into spheres of influence where, at times, operations pitted one country or area against others for our benefit. The effects on the ordinary people were ignored for the goal of the greater good.

RB ~ Average Americans think about this data collection and that domestic spying should be spending time, money and resources chasing bad guys in Yemen, Iran or Syria, not worrying about some conversation or email between a guy and his grandmother. Are there other hidden reasonings behind collecting so much private and inconsequential information about non-threats within the country? Maybe political?

VL~  Certainly politics always has a role in what type of intelligence is collected and from whom. With today’s technology that allows us and foreign nations to encrypt private communications, the race to stay ahead of the curve out weighs the concerns for people’s rights.

RB ~ Is the invasion of our privacy “rights” (and maybe I’m using the term loosely) growing out of control, or has the presence of Trump in the oval office stemmed the tide of intrusion into our lives?

VL~   Basically and simply – No

RB ~  For most of us, the Clinton’s have been on the highway of free rides since the 80’s, bypassing every legal stop sign and prosecution toll booth in their path as they speedily wind their way toward fame and riches – mostly infamous riches. Everything they touch seems to be laden with bi-chromatic fingerprint dust and the blood of innocents mixed with confusion. With the questionable death of Seth Rich and other DNC maneuvering, for whose benefit and for what purpose? Was Rich to receive the blame for the hacking but wanted to prove otherwise?

VL~ Investigation, NO enforcement

RB ~  Is the CIA capable of assisting or independently pursuing “political crimes” to bring about justice to those involved in all this current Clinton/DNC/State Dept./intelligence corruption, or should they be more an investigative, enforcement force against more traditional crimes? Or is there really a difference anymore?

VL~   Dem’s vs Republicans – too political.

RB ~ Is enough finally being done to investigate and dig into these email scandals and schemes? Seems like 2 intelligence groups would be more efficient given the foreign component of things.

VL ~  More open but still restrictive

RB ~ And as a follow up, are the lines of communication between the FBI, CIA and NSA now more open than before, or is interagency pride and elitism keeping them from working together efficiently?

VL~     It’s all politics

RB ~  Did you in your wildest intelligence dreams ever think that a major political party could invade the sanctity of our election process by creating false documents, use them to smear an opposition candidate before an election, then use them to assault the privacy of his closest confidants, using them to corrupt the privacy process of the FISA system, all while the long term goal of removing a duly elected president loomed in the back of their destructive playbook?

VL~  Since FISA courts (hearings) are held in secret, much like grand jury hearings, the prosecutor usually controls the hearing and the court will go along with the prosecution’s request 99% of the time so its use is always, in my view, political. The fact that the election process can be corrupted to the degree that it has been is just another example of politics over-ruling facts. Its sad to see its degradation to the point that politics has apparently removed all fairness to the process.

RB ~ Knowing you weren’t there then, but has John Brennan stepped over the line of reason? Is his lying and anti-patriotic, partisan views a change or was it always there, hidden from public view?

VL~ Political leanings always influence decision and actions

RB ~ Did the decision to become so outspoken come easy given your patriotism and seeing the need for truth, or was it a life changing moment with thoughts of reprisals and long term career and personal ramifications?

VL~ I needed to tell the truth

RB ~  With Alexis, Echo, TVs with cameras, home security Wi-Fi cameras, Google phones tracking our every move and refrigerators knowing what we buy  and how we shop, are we living totally exposed with our non-private lives open to become fodder for anyone willing to review, sell or track?

VL~  We allow this for the sole sake of convenience

RB ~ With so many problems and scandals related to political corruption, spying on citizens, immigration, local communities and states opting out of abiding by federal law….are we losing America?

VL~  Its already lost and there is no real way back.

RB ~ And with all the action and complications of a government intelligence / law enforcement position, what was that one fun, rewarding, passionate moment you remember from your whole career?

VL~      Understanding that the world is not our enemy we don’t need to invent enemies.

 

Our thanks to Verne for his time, his service to our country and thoughts, and to his co-author, Professor Phil Zwerling for their input into this book and this article.  This and my other “insider” articles go to the question of whether we can truly trust our own government and their real intentions in their attempt to protect us.

Whistleblowers exist for a reason… to spread the truth of what’s behind the curtain and alert us to wrongdoings that affect our lives, our futures.

This article is just the beginning. You’ll find a fascinating read on the intrigue of Verne’s CIA life and adventures in the US, Cuba and beyond in his book, “Eyes on Havana.” I can’t recommend enough its addition to your reading shelf. It’s an eye opening revelation of what lengths the government will go to destroying policies, laws and lives to get to their final nefarious objectives.

RB

Facts and opinions expressed are those of the interviewee and not necessarily those of the author or westernfreepress.com. Certain passages and quotes used with permission from his book,”Eyes on Havana -Memoir of an American Spy Betrayed by the CIA.”
[1] Eyes on Havana- Verne Lyon & Phil Zwerling, McFarland Publishing (January 12, 2018)