- The Washington Times - Thursday, June 28, 2001

Spy stuff

Former FBI and CIA Director William Webster was spotted huddling in Washington this week with one-time Soviet KGB chief Oleg Kalugin.

Not to worry, Louis.

Turns out the International Spy Museum's advisory board was holding its first official meeting; among its retired spooks are agents Webster and Kalugin. The one-of-a-kind museum opens next spring at 800 F St. NW, housing the largest permanent exhibition in the world dedicated to espionage.

Read famous and infamous spies, master deceptions and intelligence operations that changed the course of history, and espionage artifacts that include the legendary German cipher machine Enigma, secret KGB cameras and OSS sabotage weapons.

Even modern-day spies might like to "drop" by the museum.

"This museum will address the history of the international intelligence community through an intellectual and exciting approach that former and current agents alike will find appealing," says Mr. Kalugin, the KGB's former chief of counterintelligence.

The museum's founder is Milton Maltz, a former intelligence analyst attached to the National Security Agency.


Lobby watch

Being a free-trader isn't easy, especially in the digital age.

Corporate America's lobbyists gathered at the Ronald Reagan International Trade Center to tout President Bush's plan to win the authority from Congress to negotiate new free-trade agreements. The problem: so did a youthful operative from the anti-globalization movement.

The young man, whose name remains a mystery, forged his own press packet, which included e-mail addresses for all the lobbyists who have formed an ad hoc coalition dubbed "USTrade" to push for what the Bush administration is calling "trade-promotion authority."

The result has been some unflattering missives aimed at such giants of the American economy as Eastman Kodak, Caterpillar, Proctor & Gamble, and Ford Motor Co.

"We are watching you, and will not stand by as you seek to manipulate all that is free and just about our world for your own greedy purposes," one protester wrote from Milwaukee.

Mr. Bush wants trade-promotion authority by the end of the year. The lobbyists hope it happens before their in-boxes overflow.


Title not won

More than 40 congressmen are co-sponsoring legislation to award the Congressional Gold Medal to a convicted draft evader.

"I ain't got no quarrel with them Viet Cong," replied world heavyweight boxing champion Muhammad Ali after the Vietnam draft call was expanded and he was reclassified 1A, eligible for military service.

Says Rep. Julia Carson, Indiana Democrat: "It may have been a spontaneous remark, but he stuck by his word with courage, conviction and stood out against the conflict in Vietnam."

"Perhaps Ali's greatest testament," she adds, "was the only fight in which he declined to participate."

Mr. Ali was convicted of draft evasion 34 years ago this month. He was recently ranked among the top 20 heroes and icons of the 20th century.


Church and state

Sen. Blanche Lincoln, Arkansas Democrat, had good reason to pay homage when opening prayers were offered this week by Congress' guest chaplain, Canon Pastor Lawson Anderson of Trinity Cathedral in Little Rock, Ark. The pastor is the senator's uncle.


Forgetting Walter

Few items have generated as much reader dialogue as our story this week on the importance — or the lack thereof — of the vice presidency.

Zach McEntyre, of the University of Georgia's political science and history departments, says we plain forgot about former President Jimmy Carter and "the first vice president to exercise real authority in the modern sense," Walter Mondale.

"When Jimmy Carter was elected, he came to Washington with no prior experience as a national figure, in foreign policy or otherwise, and very little legislative background. He entrusted Mondale, the former senator, with vast responsibilities previously unthinkable for a vice president," Mr. McEntyre notes.

"Such a departure from historic norms was especially notable in the wake of a string of unhappy relationships, i.e. Kennedy-Johnson, Johnson-Humphrey, Nixon-Agnew, Ford-Rockefeller. Since Carter, every succeeding president — with the obvious exception of Bush Sr. with Quayle — has treated his second-in-command as just that."


Say what?

Never trust a politician, warns one politician.

Sen. Robert C. Byrd, the senior West Virginia Democrat who counts "at least 10 different presidents" he's dealt with, remembers one presidential nominee trying to explain his way out of one mess: "I didn't say that I didn't say it; I said that I didn't say that I said it. Let me be clear. I didn't say that I didn't say it; I said that I didn't say that I said it.

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