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About R J Hillhouse

  • Dr. Hillhouse has run Cuban rum between East and West Berlin, smuggled jewels from the Soviet Union and slipped through some of the world’s tightest borders. From Uzbekistan to Romania, she's been followed, held at gunpoint and interrogated. Foreign governments and others have pitched her for recruitment as a spy. (They failed.)

    A former professor and Fulbright fellow, Dr. Hillhouse earned her Ph.D. in political science at the University of Michigan. Her latest novel, OUTSOURCED (Forge Books) is about the turf wars between the Pentagon and the CIA and the privatization of national security.

    Dr. Hillhouse is an expert on national security outsourcing. Her controversial work has twice elicited a formal response by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence--the only times that office has ever publicly responded to the writings of a private citizen.

    She is a regular media guest and available for interviews.

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  • "This gripping blog is filled with compelling posts on private intel corporations, mercenaries, the CIA, and the War on Terror."

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October 05, 2007



Actually, espionage itself, as well as certain associated acts (i.e., breaking and entering, theft, blackmail, subversion) are crimes under U.S. law.

Alice Marshall

"This can involve activities outside US territory that may be criminal under US law and may be criminal under local foreign laws. As distasteful as that might be to many, it really has to be this way for an espionage organization to function and such covert work really can preempt larger, more distasteful consequences. "

Not sure I agree with this. The CIA turned a blind eye to Contra Cocaine, with the result that cocaine flooded into the American market with all the attendant violence. What if we had not turned a blind eye, the Contras would have been shut down? And that would have been bad how?

I am far from convinced the trade offs have worked for the American people.

So often Real Politic is Real Hubris.

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  • A tip of the hat to investigative journalist Tim Shorrock who inspired the name of this blog with his path-breaking 2005 article, "The Spy Who Billed Me."

    Shorrock has a dedicated web page on outsourcing in intel. It links to many of his articles which are must-reads for anyone interested in the privatization of intelligence.