Thursday, July 31, 2008

Get your popcorn

Chris Simmons, described in media reports as an active duty U.S. Army officer and a top expert on the Cuban intelligence service, will appear tonight on A Mano Limpia, Oscar Haza’s program on Miami’s Channel 41.

According to Cuban Colada, “A press release issued by Simmons’ associate in South Florida, Ana Margarita Martinez, said Simmons will be here Thursday to ‘follow through on his word to publicly name Cuban spies in South Florida.’”

In addition to his government work – the Washington Times says he works for the Defense Intelligence Agency – Simmons is founder of the Cuban Intelligence Research Center, a private company that offers a variety of services, including a seminar that you can host at your company for up to 25 participants for $51,750. The Center’s website has a number of videos of Simmons on Spanish-language media, speaking English.

At Babalu, they posted a message from Simmons indicating that he will not be divulging any classified information, and he will only divulge the names of spies in which the U.S. government has no investigative interest.

Well, we can’t have everything.

What we do have is probably the most talkative member of the U.S. intelligence community in recent memory. Last November at the Heritage Foundation, he said there are probably Cuban agents working inside the U.S. government today, just as Ana Montes did. “There may be, the number may actually be in the teens, of long-term penetrations at the highest level of the U.S. government,” he said. “And we’re not talking a slipshod operation. We’re talking the FBI, Central Intelligence Agency, Congress, and the White House.”

Maybe Mr. Haza will ask about that.


Mambi_Watch said...

First, it's very confusing to read recent reports describing Simmons as a DIA counter-intelligence analyst, and not being detailed like earlier articles describing him as a "former" or "ex" DIA analyst.

When I researched Simmons for my blog, I used 3 different news articles from early 2008, ALL of which described him as an "ex" or "former" DIA analyst. The Oscar Haza show tonight made the same assumption as Chardy, and described Simmons as an intelligence analyst for the US, not a "former" analyst.

I ended up watching the Haza show in parts, and most of the last 20 or so minutes. (It'll be on YouTube soon I'm sure.)

BOY, did Oscar Haza look nervous and serious throughout the whole show, or what! Simmons looked a bit more calm, but his sense of nervousness showed when at one point you could see this one large bead of sweat slowly going down the side of his face.

Anyway, I don't think Simmons ever mentioned how many people are on his list, I don't even think Haza asked. Haza was more like "The show's all yours Simmons!" and they immediately started going one-by-one. I never saw Haza try to ask tough questions or play devil's advocate or anything that good journalists do. That's Haza for you.

So, there was NOTHING of value from what I saw of the show. (Simmons did warn that his revelations would be of little interest to authorities.) Instead, Simmons just unearthed long buried speculations of those he called "agents of influence." (That's the magic word to avoid lawsuits.)

I was able to fully catch Simmons repeat the old allegations (without new hard evidence) on Marifeli Perez Stable and Gilberto Abascal.

The allegations about Abascal have been reported (and laid to rest) in the Miami Herald in 2006. There's no smoking gun here.

And, the allegations on Perez-Stable are not even worth mentioning, it's so old and weak. I've written about it on my blog before.

According to what I saw, Simmons, with the blessing of Oscar Haza and his producers, was allowed to use his status as an "intelligence analyst" to further provoke slander on people who have already been stigmatized, and already denounced said allegations.

In a serious tone, Haza kept repeating that all those named by Simmons are invited on his show to defend themselves.

I wouldn't waste my time. I'm sure someone is calling their lawyer.

Mambi_Watch said...

Webmia's YouTube Channel has just uploaded the show in six parts.

Anonymous said...

Got to agree with MW, here. Simmons is adding nothing substantive and is only playing into Miami's sense of paranoia. The people Simmons allegedly knows about but can't name aren't going to be in a position to do much, if any damage at this point.

Anonymous said...

so, geniuses, there are no Cuban spies in Miami...

Anonymous said...

I was waiting for Peters to be named an agent of influence... guess we'll just have to wait a little longer.