Q&A: Lindsay Moran—A Former CIA Operative Reveals Why She Became a Spy- Pursuit Magazine Article
March 4, 2014 Leave a comment
A conversation between contributor Kevin Goodman and former CIA clandestine service operative Lindsay Moran
In Part 1 of our series, Moran reveals her childhood fascination with spies, her family’s secret history, and the difficulty of reconciling the need for trust in personal relationships with a job that demands constant lies.
Lindsay Moran is a correspondent for Al-Jazeera America’s TechKnow, a show about the technology and innovation that is changing the world. From 1998 to 2003, Lindsay worked as a case officer for the CIA’sclandestine service. It’s the job most people think of when they hear the word “spy.”
Working, often under an alias, posing as a diplomat, Lindsay’s real job was to befriend foreigners with access to secret information and then convince them to commit espionage on behalf of the United States government. After leaving the CIA, Lindsay wrote a memoir of her experience with “the Agency,” titled Blowing My Cover: My Life As A Spy.
I had the pleasure of interviewing Lindsay, and we discussed broadly what being a spy—a CIA case officer—entails and what skills it requires. This is the first in a series of three articles that touch on the high points of that conversation.
Becoming a Spy: Background and Motivations
KEVIN: Is it true that you were actually motivated to go into the CIA because of fictionalized characters like James Bond?
LINDSAY: Yeah, I really was, and I think that kind of shows my naivete at the time. I loved the James Bond movies as a kid. As a very young child, I was obsessed with this character, Harriet the Spy. I related to her as an aspiring spy, a little bit of a miscreant and also a writer.
Of course, I wasn’t a complete ding-dong, thinking the CIA would be like a James Bond movie, but the intrigue and glamour of Bond, and the subversive nature of Harriet the Spy, both definitely attracted me to the world of espionage.