How Great a Threat is Russian Intelligence to the United States?


On Wednesday, October 30 the Center for the National Interest hosted a panel discussion focusing on the changing Russian intelligence threat to the United States.

Media headlines paint an ominous picture of Russian election interference, assassination efforts, fifth-column tactics, and high-technology espionage. How real and how new are these threats? And how should the United States respond?

Three former members of the intelligence community were on hand to tackle these important questions and engage in a thorough discussion about the origin and nature of the dangers posed by Russian intelligence capabilities. The panelists included:

Milt Bearden- Author of The Main Enemy: The Inside Story of the CIA’s Final Showdown with the KGB who headed the renowned Soviet and East European division in CIA’s Directorate of Operations at the time of the Soviet Union’s collapse.

Eric Haseltine- Author of The Spy in Moscow Station: A Counterspy’s Hunt for a Deadly Cold War Threat, former CTO for national intelligence at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, and former director of research at the National Security Agency.

George Beebe- Vice President & Director of Studies at the Center for the National Interest and author of The Russia Trap: How Our Shadow War with Russia Could Spiral into Catastrophe. George previously served as head of Russian analysis at the CIA and a former advisor to Vice President Cheney on Russia matters.

Jacob Heilbrunn, Editor of The National Interest, moderated the discussion.

Please visit the Center for the National Interest’s YouTube page to watch a full video of the discussion, which can also be accessed here.