Gen. Michael Hayden To Be Keynote Speaker for 7th Raleigh Spy Conference

Gen. Michael Hayden

Former NSA and CIA director defended communications surveillance and intense interrogation to battle terrorism

April 19, 2011 (Raleigh, NC) — General Michael Hayden — the only person to serve as director of the National Security Agency (NSA) and as director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) —  is the keynote speaker for the 7th Raleigh Spy Conference August 24-26, 2011.

Hayden, at one time the highest-ranking military intelligence officer in the United States, oversaw NSA’s surveillance of technical communications between foreign and domestic terrorist groups during his tenure from 1999 to 2005, the longest stint of any previous director. While CIA Director from 2006 to 2009, he defended intense interrogation of terrorist suspects.

For the 2011 Raleigh Spy Conference, General Hayden will join speakers Michael Sulick, former director of CIA’s National Clandestine Service – and now a Raleigh-area resident; retired CIA officer Brian Kelley, the “wrong man” in the investigation of FBI traitor Robert Hanssen; British author and intelligence expert Nigel West; and retired Royal Canadian Mounted Police intelligence officer Dan Mulvenna.

The title for the 7th Raleigh Spy Conference is “Spies Among Us: The Secret World Of Espionage Illegals.”

Douglas Waller, author of the best-selling biography Wild Bill Donovan about the founder of the Office of Strategic Services – the World War 11 forerunner of the CIA — will anchor an Authors Roundtable during the conference. Other authors for the Roundtable will be announced later.

New to the conference this year: The Historical Collections Division of the Office of Information Services of the Central Intelligence Agency has selected the Raleigh Spy Conference to provide published works of recently declassified secret documents, ranging from the Korean War, the Warsaw Pact, Air America, martial law in Poland, the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia, and the papers of controversial CIA director Richard Helms. Officials from CIA’s Historical Division will be on hand in Raleigh to discuss their work and answer individual questions.

Magazine publisher Bernie Reeves founded the Raleigh Spy Conference in 2003 to provide a forum for intelligence experts to interpret for the general public the high volume of declassified information available since the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Says Reeves: “No one knows anything until the real story is declassified. Today, history is being rewritten at a fast clip. Our job is to call on intelligence operatives and scholars to let us know the meaning of this historic flow of information that either confirms or alters our knowledge of events.”

Raleigh Metro Magazine will host the 2011 Raleigh Spy Conference at the North Carolina Museum of History in downtown Raleigh.

The cost for attending the conference is $250 per person. Special discounts are available for veterans, members of the military and intelligence community ($175). Seniors over 62, teachers and students may attend for $145.

To register and to keep informed of updates – and to view the final schedule – visit or call 919-831-0999

About the Raleigh Spy Conference:

The Association of Former Intelligence Officers (AFIO) recognizes the Raleigh Spy Conference as the top intelligence conference specifically for the lay public in the United States. Three of the six conferences have been filmed and aired on C-SPAN. For more details on the history of the conference, go to

Nigel West: Women Make Effective Spies

Nigel West, keynote speaker, 2009 Raleigh Spy Conference
Nigel West, keynote speaker, 2009 Raleigh Spy Conference

(RALEIGH, NC, USA) — Women are good at keeping secrets. They don’t feel the need to compete or brag about their accomplishments. They are astute observers, and they think chronologically, according to Nigel West, former Member of Parliament and author of the recently released Historical Dictionary of Sexspionage.

“They make excellent spies,” West added in his keynote address to the crowd attending the 2009 Raleigh Spy Conference on the subject of Sexspionage: Famous Women Spies and the Ancient Art of Seduction. Segments of the conference are currently airing on C-SPAN.

Founded in 2003 by Bernie Reeves, editor and publisher of Raleigh Metro Magazine, the annual conference brings intelligence operatives, scholars and experts from around the globe to share observations and insights on what lurks behind the scenes of international espionage.

“We don’t really know what happened until it is declassified,” says Reeves. “Our conference has gained a good reputation worldwide for presenting intelligence as the calculus of history.”

The roster of speakers discussed stories of successful female spies, from the harlot who helped bring down the walls of Jericho to Katrina Leung, code-named “Parlor Maid,” a Chinese national who seduced two FBI agents.

Other speakers included Brian Kelley, former chief of counterintelligence for CIA’s Soviet division; Ron Olive of the Naval Criminal Investigative Service who tracked down Jonathan Pollard – the American double agent who spied for Israel with this wife Anne; I.C. Smith of the FBI who cracked the Katrina Leung case; and  British historian and author Terry Crowdy.

NCIS’s Ron Olive called the 6th Raleigh Spy Conference “the best spy conference I ever had the pleasure to be a part of.”  FBI Library Unit Chief Eugenia B. Ryner said, “The speakers were splendid, the venues wonderful and the information was outstanding.”

This year’s conference was presented in association with the Department of Political Science at NC State University, Andrew Taylor, Chairman.

For a complete recap of the 2009 Raleigh Spy Conference, and for information on past events, go to or

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CIA Officer To Present Jail House Videos During Raleigh Spy Conference

rsc_logo-smallFebruary 24, 2009 (RALEIGH, NC) — Former CIA officer Brian J. Kelley will relate the drama of notorious traitors — male and female — including videotaped prison cell interviews during the 6th Raleigh Spy Conference (  to be held March 25-27 at the North Carolina Museum of History in downtown Raleigh.

Kelley, who was identified in 2003 as the “wrong man” in the Robert Hanssen investigation, will also discuss the Felix Bloch case in his session scheduled for Thursday, March 26, from 3 pm – 4:15 during the 2-day conference.

The theme of this year’s event is “Sexspionage: Famous Women Spies and the Ancient Art of Seduction.”

Kelley retired from the Central Intelligence Agency in 2007 following a 42-year career, which included 20 years as a United States Air Force officer. Kelley was a specialist in counterintelligence, serving as a case officer for both organizations involved in double agent operations and counterespionage investigations.

Kelley had five overseas tours as a case officer, serving in various locales in the Far East, Middle East, South America and Europe. He has received the Distinguished Career Intelligence Medal; Intelligence Achievement Medal; Commendation Medal and the “Collector of the Year” presented to him by the Director of CIA.

Other speakers for this year’s conference include Ron Olive, the special agent who served on team that captured Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard; IC Smith, former FBI special agent who worked to capture Chinese female spy Katrina Leung; British espionage writer and researcher Terry Crowdy, Cold War journalist Jerrold Schecter and his wife Leona; and keynote speaker Nigel West, former Member of Parliament and author of the forthcoming “Historical Dictionary of Sexspionage.”

The Raleigh Spy Conference is hosted by Bernie Reeves, editor and publisher of Raleigh Metro Magazine. Sponsors include Rosemary and Smedes York and Florence and Charles Winston. This year the conference is presented in association with NC State University’s Department of Political Science, Andrew Taylor, Chairman.

For more information, including registration, ticket prices, a complete list of speakers, sessions schedule and local accommodations, go to


US Remains At Risk, Speakers Tell Raleigh Spy Conference; Washington Post Columnist Suggests Closing Down CIA

By Rick Smith

March 30, 2008 (RALEIGH, NC) — David Ignatius, a ground-breaking reporter in espionage coverage — and author of five spy novels highly praised by members of the intelligence community — is worried about the CIA.

Speaking at the Fifth Raleigh Spy Conference, Ignatius warned that so-called intelligence reforms put in place following the 9/11 terrorist attacks have left the Agency and the United States vulnerable to terror attacks and espionage by other enemies.

“To be honest, I’d blow up the CIA — get rid of it,” The Washington Post columnist told the crowd in his closing keynote address. Rather than keep the CIA as it exists under the National Director of Intelligence, the CIA’s headquarters in Langley, VA, should be “turned into a theme park,” he said.

In an address that covered his career dating from the 1970s that included his interview as a young reporter with legendary CIA counterintelligence chief James Angleton, Ignatius said the CIA had degenerated from a “robust, well-wired organization” capable of penetrating Yasser Arafat’s inner circle to an organization today that is encumbered by bureaucracy, “an administration that doesn’t like it” and is “risk adverse.”

His calls for change would not be unwelcome in Langley, said Brian Kelley, a 40-year CIA counterintelligence veteran who was also a guest speaker.

“Some in the CIA would agree with him,” said Kelley, who was exonerated by the FBI after a tortuous three-year investigation that targeted him as a Soviet “mole.” The actual spy turned out to be the FBI’s own Robert Hanssen. “To separate the clandestine service is necessary to get us out from the bureaucracy. I’m not sure how it would work, but he is not alone in saying this.”

A strong CIA is needed as much now as ever, added Tennent “Pete” Bagley, an Agency veteran of the 1960s and ’70s who was the case officer charged with handling alleged Soviet KGB defector Yuri Nosenko. Nosenko came to the US with the story that the Soviets had no ties to John F. Kennedy assassin Lee Harvey Oswald. Bagley never believed him.

In his new book Spy Wars, Bagley relates how he ultimately failed to convince the CIA leadership that Nosenko was an instrument in a KGB deception operation. He told the conference he believes that the Agency’s failure to pressure Nosenko for his true knowledge of all Soviet efforts — such as “turning” cryptologists and running unidentified moles — is being felt today.

“I don’t want to see those traitors escape justice,” he said. “There is always a continuum in espionage, so the spies of the past have roots in the future.”

Although retired for 30 years, Bagley, 82, also insisted in an interview that the Cold War continues with Russia. Under Vladimir Putin, the Russian spy services are as active as ever, he said. On a recent visit to Moscow he met a former KGB rival who said the hate didn’t die with the collapse of the Berlin Wall.

“He looked me straight in the eye and said, ‘We are STILL working against you,’” Bagley said. “Was I surprised? Not at all.”

The Raleigh Spy Conference drew a host of former and current intelligence operatives and members of the public to hear additional speakers, including former Time magazine Bureau Chief Jerrold Schecter and CIA chief historian David Robarge.

“The world is a more dangerous place than ever,” Robarge said in an interview. “There is no balance in terror that prevents the worst from happening, as there was between the Soviet Union and the United States.

“The worst,” he warned, “could happen tomorrow.”

Go to for more information and biographies of conference speakers.


Countdown to the Conference: Defector’s Claims About JFK, Oswald Underlie Theme

–The Nosenko case and the key unsolved mysteries of the CIA will hold center court at the 5th Raleigh Spy Conference Coming Up March 26-28 at the North Carolina Museum of History in downtown Raleigh.–

March 10, 2008 (RALEIGH, NC) — Why would the KGB take pains to deny it had nothing to do with the assassination of John F. Kennedy, or that the Soviet spy agency had no contact with Lee Harvey Oswald when he lived in the USSR prior to the events in Dallas?

CIA officer Tennent “Pete” Bagley asked those questions of KGB defector Yuri Nosenko in Geneva in 1964 — less than two months after the assassination. James Angleton, the chief of counterintelligence for CIA, agreed with Bagley’s assessment: Nosenko was part of a deception and was not telling the whole truth. Thus ensued one the most controversial sagas in CIA history that continues today with the publication of a new book by Pete Bagley.

The 2008 Raleigh Spy Conference, an internationally acclaimed event that draws top experts in the field of intelligence to Raleigh each year, will feature Bagley and five other expert speakers under the title CIA’s Unsolved Mysteries: The Nosenko Defection, Double Agents and Angleton’s Wilderness of Mirrors. The final conference schedule is available at (click on “event info”) and tickets may be purchased in advance since seating is limited.

According to Conference founder Bernie Reeves, editor and publisher of Raleigh Metro Magazine, “Many questions remain from the monumental battle between the Soviet Union and the United States when the wheel of history often turned to the will of agents of deception and moles burrowed inside intelligence and other government agencies. It was indeed a ‘wilderness of mirrors’ that continues today to cast a confused image of history.”

On Wednesday evening March 26, the conference kicks off with a intriguing inside look at two of the most notorious traitors in US history – Aldrich Ames of CIA and Robert Hanssen of the FBI – and a third shadowy operative who lives today near Raleigh in Chapel Hill, NC: Felix Bloch, the former Deputy Chief of Mission in the American embassy in Vienna, Austria. Using personal knowledge of the cases, former CIA counterintelligence officer Brian Kelley – whose life was disrupted when the FBI thought he was the mole who turned out to be Robert Hanssen – will bring never before disclosed first-hand insight into the most infamous spy cases in US history. Registration begins at 6 p.m.

David Robarge, chief historian for CIA, will start off Thursday morning at 9 a.m. discussing the environment at CIA created by the legendary James Jesus Angleton, CIA’s counterintelligence chief who turned the Agency inside out searching for a Soviet mole he thought had burrowed into the highest levels of the US intelligence community.

At 10:30 a.m., former CIA counterintelligence officer Brian Kelley will dramatize for the first time the true story of an American double agent targeted against the KGB. Drawing on newly declassified information, Kelley will trace the deceptions and mystery of the case – involving spy agencies, presidents and KGB sources — and conclude with a stunning surprise involving an American official.

At 1:30 p.m., Special Guest Tennent “Pete” Bagley will be center stage for a Q&A session led by Brian Kelley to divulge the story of KGB defector Yuri Nosenko in 1964, who brought news that the KGB had nothing to do with the assassination of John F. Kennedy – and had no contact with Lee Harvey Oswald when he lived in the Soviet Union just prior to the assassination. Bagley’s new book, Spy Wars: Moles, Mysteries and Deadly Games, maintains that – despite the CIA’s eventual acceptance of Nosenko as a valid defector – he was actually a KGB plant sent to disrupt US intelligence. Bagley, snubbed by some of his CIA colleagues over his book, will reveal his findings at the Raleigh conference and discuss his experience in the wilderness of mirrors created by moles, double agents, false defectors and deception operations.

At 3 p.m., Former Time Magazine Moscow bureau chief – and respected author of seminal books on the Cold War – Jerrold Schecter will address the political environment that produced the double agents, moles and deception operations that created the wilderness of mirrors that signified the Cold War confrontation of spy agencies for the US and the Soviet Union.

From 4:15 to 5 p.m. authors at the Conference will hold a book signing. The day will conclude with a Conference Gala from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Amra’s in Raleigh’s Glenwood South district.

Friday, March 28, kicks off at 9 a.m. with a panel discussion featuring all speakers to field additional questions from the audience, introduce special guests, and discuss the findings and conclusions from the 5th Raleigh Spy Conference.

At 11 a.m., David Ignatius, Washington Post columnist and former Moscow bureau chief – and author of espionage fiction applauded by the intelligence community – will deliver the final address with an overview of the era that created the wilderness of mirrors and the political and historical impact of Cold War espionage.

The Raleigh Spy Conference was founded “to bridge the gap between intelligence and current history,” according to Reeves. “The calculus of modern events is intelligence. We don’t really know what happened until someone declassifies something.”

Association of Intelligence Officers President Gene Poteat says of the Raleigh Conference: “In Washington, it’s difficult for the public to comprehend important intelligence and terrorism issues since everything is partisan and politically charged. Outside Washington, there are few voices for the public to hear, and those heard are often wrong or media-driven. Few are able to explain to the public what really has happened, and is happening, in intelligence, counterterrorism and national security — important issues, which, throughout history, have spelled the survival or loss of this or other nations.

“The annual Raleigh Spy Conference is a rare opportunity to hear it straight, with an unusual ‘insider’s’ perspective and knowledge. Each year this conference opens that door to share remarkable insights and stellar speakers with the public. If one claims a scintilla of world-affairs knowledge, it cannot be true unless the annual Raleigh Spy Conference is on your calendar.”

Tickets to the three-day event are $250 for the general public, $175 for seniors, and $145 for teachers, students and members of the military and intelligence community. Early registration is available by calling Jennifer Hadra at 919-831-0999. For complete information, including accommodations, go to

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David Ignatius To Give Keynote Address at Raleigh Spy Conference

February 19, 2008 (RALEIGH, NC) – DAVID IGNATIUS, Washington Post columnist and former Moscow bureau chief will deliver the keynote address at the fifth annual Raleigh Spy Conference ( to be held in downtown Raleigh March 26-28.

Ignatius is also the author of espionage fiction applauded by the intelligence community. His newest book, Body of Lies, is being made into a major motion picture starring Russell Crow and Leonardo diCaprio. Ignatius will offer conference attendees an overview of the era that created the “wilderness of mirrors” involving double agents, moles and deception operations — and the political and historical impact of Cold War espionage.

Ignatius has had a distinguished career in the news business. He has written widely for magazines and published six novels, including “Agents of Innocence,” which Harper’s Magazine called ‘one of the greatest spy tales ever written.” His twice-weekly column on global politics, economics and international affairs debuted on The Washington Post op-ed page in January 1999 syndicated worldwide by the Los Angeles Times/Washington Post News Service.

Ignatius continued to write weekly after becoming executive editor of the Paris-based International Herald Tribune in September 2000. When the Post sold its interest in the IHT in January 2003, he resumed writing twice a week for the op-ed page and was syndicated worldwide by The Washington Post Writers Group. His column won the 2000 Gerald Loeb Award for Commentary and a 2004 Edward Weintal Prize.

As executive editor of the IHT, Ignatius met with leaders of countries across Europe and Asia. During his journalism career, he has covered almost every Washington beat, from the Pentagon to the CIA to Capitol Hill.

Ignatius served as the Post´s foreign editor from 1990 to 1992, supervising the paper´s Pulitzer Prize-winning coverage of the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. From 1986 to 1990, he was editor of the Post´s Outlook section, a Sunday opinion section that covers politics, economics, foreign policy and intellectual trends.

Before joining the Washington Post in 1986, Ignatius spent 10 years as a reporter for The Wall Street Journal, covering the steel industry, the Justice Department, the CIA and the U.S. Senate. He transferred overseas to become the paper´s Middle East correspondent from 1980 to 1983, covering wars in Lebanon and Iraq. He returned to Washington in 1984 as the Journal´s chief diplomatic correspondent.

Raised in Washington, D.C., Ignatius attended St. Albans School and Harvard College, where he graduated magna cum laude in 1973. He received a Frank Knox Fellowship from Harvard and studied at King´s College, Cambridge University, where he received a diploma in economics. He has published articles in Foreign Affairs, The New York Times Magazine, The Atlantic Monthly, The New Republic, Talk Magazine and The Washington Monthly.

Ignatius has written six novels: Agents of Innocence, published in 1987 by W.W. Norton; SIRO, published in 1991 by Farrar, Strauss & Giroux; The Bank of Fear, published in 1994 by William Morrow; A Firing Offense, published in 1997 by Random House; The Sun King, published in 1999 by Random House; and Body of Lies, published in April 2007 by W.W. Norton. His books have been translated into a dozen languages. Tom Cruise and Paramount Productions bought film rights to his fourth novel, A Firing Offense. Director Ridley Scott and Warner Bros. are currently in production on Body of Lies.

For details on the Raleigh Spy Conference, including schedule and reservations, go to