007 Secrets: SPECTRE

Espionage Archive has collated my Bond analyses.

Espionage History Archive

The newest film in the 007 series will be titled SPECTRE, a fitting reference to the real cabals and cartels that rule the world. Indeed, SPECTRE is presented early on in From Russia with Love with this very feature – they are international, as opposed to SMERSH being Russian, and play nation states off against one another. Transitioning from the Soviet-affiliated SMERSH in the first Bond novel, Casino Royale, SMERSH transforms into SPECTRE, a formidable “terrorist” organization from the ambiguous East.

It is also telling that back in the 50s and 60s, Ian Fleming was already predicting the transition from the communist threat to the international terrorist threat – something that gave me the indication that Fleming novels are worth a deeper look. Even current media hysteria seems the product of a shrewd psychological operation: Sony claims to have been hacked by North Korea, with the SPECTRE script leaked, as well…

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5 Comments on 007 Secrets: SPECTRE

  1. Love your work Jay. As always.

    Read this earlier and thought you might get a kick…


  2. Yesh, Mishh Moneypenny.

    Currently halfway through the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, by Alan Moore

    (both Movie and Graphic Novel’s)

    Some great takes there on the bond mythos.

  3. Bob Sacamano // April 4, 2015 at 10:04 pm // Reply

    During the BCCI scandal, senior executives of the bank referred to a “black network”. The influence of this “black network” turned out to be so pervasive that even the official investigators of the scandal suspected they had been put under surveillance by this network, which was described as a “a global intelligence operation [with] a Mafia-like enforcement squad”. Only a handful of reporters ever reported on this black network. Among the exceptions was Jack R. Payton, editor of the St. Petersburg Times, who in October 1992 wrote:

    “Well I’ve just finished slogging through a 794-page government report on the scandal, and believe me it’s even worse than I thought. Much worse…

    Consider, for a moment, what it might mean to have an organization around that could pull off the following: Manipulate the Central Intelligence Agency and the spy agencies of Britain, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, China, Syria, Israel and who knows how many others all at the same time…; Help Pakistan buy nuclear technology on the international black market…; Launder drug money for the Medellin cocaine cartel in Colombia; Bankroll Abu Nidal, the most notorious terrorist in the world; Handle Manuel Noriega’s finances in Panama; Procure prostitutes, some of them children, for traveling Middle Eastern potentates; Rig international commodity markets so that a few insiders could make hundreds of millions of dollars in a single day; Intimidate potential opponents to the point that they feared for their lives. There’s a lot more, but you get the idea…

    This is scary enough as it is. The reason we may never know is that as thorough as the Senate investigation may have been, it didn’t have access to reams of information that could shed more light on BCCI. The CIA has several hundred reports on BCCI but allowed the subcommittee to look at only three of them. British authorities also have a stockpile of information on BCCI they won’t make available because it was classified by British intelligence, MI-5…

    But despite the years of investigation, the arrests and confiscations, even the Senate subcommittee had to admit that we may never know the full extent of BCCI’s crimes, how many top politicians it bribed or if it really had a so-called “black network” of assassins who would eliminate anyone who got in its way.

    Even so, what we do know about BCCI is mind-boggling. It’s also incredibly complicated – as the Senate subcommittee itself admits, almost beyond comprehension.”

    Very SPECTRE-esque.

  4. Bob Sacamano // April 4, 2015 at 10:07 pm // Reply

    The 1991 Time magazine article on the BCCI scandal:

    B.C.C.I.: The Dirtiest Bank of All
    How B.C.C.I. and its black network became a financial supermarket for crooks and spies — and how the U.S. is trying to cover up its role
    By Jonathan Beaty and S.C. Gwynne/New York

    “I could tell you what you want to know, but I must worry about my wife and family — they could be killed.”

    — a former top B.C.C.I. officer

    “We better not talk about this over the phone. We’ve found some bugs in offices that haven’t been put there by law enforcement.”

    — a Manhattan investigator probing B.C.C.I.


    A few years after the reports on this black network, the Comuele scandal in Belgium broke out. After an elaborate investigation, gendarmerie investigators working on the ATLAS dossier, wrote:

    “To comprehend this nebula, it is necessary to abandon traditional financial or political logic; this is not merely a question of nation, political party, or of ordinary economics.

    Our conclusion would be that at least over the last twenty years, the economic powers, some of which mafia types, have allied themselves with political forces and organized criminal structures, and reached the 4th stage of money laundering, namely, Absolute Power.

    It has been specified to us that at the present moment these characters control 50% of the world economy.

    One should not lose sight of the fact that this nebula would control the majority of the financial traffic, as well as the highest political leaders, worldwide.

    This same structure could, if it wanted, put pressure on the most important cities of this world, controlling in each one almost everything (energy, communications, provisioning of water, environment….)… in order to impose itself, its strategy has been to use corruption, and has done so for many years.”

    – Belgian gendarmerie report to a number of senior officials, District of Liege, November 21, 1994.

    Both the BCCI and the ATLAS report talk about very powerful international networks involved in drug trafficking, the procuring of child prostitutes (indirectly in the case of ATLAS), the use of terrorists [44], the smuggling of nuclear materials, and massive money laundering. Both reports also concluded that these networks are extremely complex, very hard to understand, and just as hard to fight. BCCI is just one of many scandals tied to the same international network of conspirators, consisting of military and intelligence men, zionist neoconservatives, arms dealers, bankers, businessmen, mafia organizations, diplomats, etc. Examples of scandals tied to this network are the collapse of the Nugan Hand Bank in 1980, the October Surprise in 1981, Iran Contra in 1986, the collapse of the Franklin Credit Union in 1988, the Craig Spence affair in 1989, Iraqgate in 1990, and the BCCI scandal in 1991.

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