Alpine Access Essay

China was not the only country that attempted to buy off the legislative branch. Furthermore, according to a 1978 Congressional inquiry, South Korea’s Central Intelligence Agency (KCIA) authorized its Washington, DC, chief of station to back the election campaign of a specific Congressman.Pakistan—including the country’s Inter-Services Intelligence—funneled million, over two decades, to a variety of U. Years earlier, funding became a blatant intelligence recruitment/public corruption issue in the case of Congressman Samuel Dickstein, who was on the Soviet payroll between 19.

For instance, in 1967, a Soviet First Secretary expressed interest in engineering an opportunity to meet individuals on Capitol Hill who handled trade and foreign affairs issues.

Apparently, no functionary is too insignificant for intelligence service interest.

Foreign actors must gather basic information that will enable them to assess specific legislative branch figures.

As part of its inquiry into the illicit campaign finance activities with a nexus to the 1996 federal election campaign, the U. Senate Committee on Governmental Affairs noted that China was “learning more about Members of Congress.” Open Congressional hearings provide opportunities for foreign intelligence operatives to gain insights about the individuals involved with policy issues of concern.

Foreign influence activities—particularly of a Soviet / Russian flavor—have been a consistent threat to U. politics since before the Cold War but have only sporadically attracted U. (Foreign governments may also attempt to amplify these pressures through the exploitation of conduits for influence such as the media, think tanks, and activist organizations.) The cacophony of external advocacy around a legislative initiative creates an environment in which one more voice—albeit it that of a foreign government —does not seem so conspicuous.

Like the attacks of September 11, 2001, these developments do not represent a paradigm shift but, instead, a brutal reminder of activity that has long progressed—largely unheeded—in the shadows. These covert—and sometimes not-so-covert—influence activities are as, if not even more, valuable than the ability to collect protected information because if successful they allow a foreign government to shape U. Its malleability—due to tension with the executive branch and partisan forces—make it susceptible to pressures that are not felt by the executive branch. Therefore, the United States needs requirements, of greater stringency than the current Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) and Lobbying Disclosure Act (LDA) to ensure that decisionmakers are transparent about their contacts with foreign actors, who may be seeking to exert influence, and to keep officials accountable to the American public they are supposed to serve. Disruption of foreign influence activities should focus on reducing opacity—which foreign actors exploit as cover for influence activities—in the policymaking process. Intelligence Community, as an Intelligence Analyst, for more than a decade. Foreign actors must then must find points of access through which they can introduce information that supports their policy objectives. Domestic Intelligence Enterprise: History, Development, and Operations (Taylor & Francis, 2015) and co-author of Securing U. First, a foreign actor must develop awareness of the decisionmaking environment, specifically the processes and the players associated with developing and passing legislation. elections and its meddling in the politics of various European countries has called attention to the vulnerability of policymaking to covert foreign manipulation. Congress is uniquely vulnerable to foreign government-directed influence campaigns.Congress is characterized by tensions that foreign actors can adeptly manipulate to advance their agendas at the expense of the American electorate. He holds an MA from the George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs, an MS from the National Intelligence University, and a BA from the University of California. The views expressed in this essay are entirely the author’s and do not represent those of any U. Foreign actors seeking to manipulate Congress must engage in several distinct activities to develop a foundation for influence operations. Tromblay has been published by Lawfare, the Hill, Small Wars Journal, and Intelligence and National Security. This essay is adapted from his forthcoming book on the impact of foreign influence operations on U. policymaking, which will be published by Rowman & Littlefield in 2018. However, legislators and members of their staffs who seek information from foreign officials put themselves in the crosshairs of foreign intelligence operatives.Ultimately, the progression from formal to informal may lead to a full-fledged recruitment pitch.In 1982, Soviet intelligence attempted to enlist the services of the staff assistant to a member of Congress. An example of how a foreign government can benefit from these interactions is demonstrated by a 2008 incident during which Congressmen Bill Delahunt and Dana Rohrbacher—who has been publicly identified as sympathetic to Russian interests—advised Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin that Russia needed to interact with Congress more effectively.


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