- The Washington Times - Saturday, December 14, 2002

Theodore Shackley, a retired associate deputy director of CIA clandestine operations and a celebrated intelligence agent, died of cancer Dec. 9 at his home in Bethesda. He was 75.
In his 28-year career in espionage, Mr. Shackley served with distinction during the height of the Cold War, earning the nickname "the godfather of secret warriors" and receiving three times the Distinguished Intelligence Medal, the CIA's highest honor.
Nicknamed "the blond ghost" because of his aversion to being photographed, Mr. Shackley was also a published author and the founder of a risk-analysis consulting firm, Research Associates International Ltd., which offers its services to corporate executives.
Born in Springfield, Mass., Mr. Shackley grew up in West Palm Beach, Fla. He served in the Army during World War II and the Korean War, after which he graduated from the University of Maryland with a degree in government and politics.
While in the Army heading to Korea, Mr. Shackley was recruited into the CIA in 1951, and his first assignment was West Berlin, the espionage center of the world at that time.
In 1962, Mr. Shackley was named CIA station chief in Miami, where he helped Cuban exiles seeking to overthrow Fidel Castro, and served there during the Cuban missile crisis, when the Kennedy administration forced the Soviet Union to remove its missiles from the island.
He also led a U.S. effort to topple Mr. Castro called Operation Mongoose, in which he directed about 400 agents and operatives in gathering intelligence about the Cuban leader.
Mr. Shackley was transferred to Southeast Asia, where he was assigned to supervise a "secret" CIA war in Laos. He helped train Hmong hill people to oppose Pathet Lao forces backed by North Vietnam and sneaked spies into China. He also served as CIA station chief in Saigon during the Vietnam War.
From May 1976 to December 1977, Mr. Shackley served as associate deputy director of operations, the No. 2 position in the clandestine-operations branch. He retired from the CIA in 1979.
Mr. Shackley wrote three books about intelligence and security "The Third Option," "You're the Target," and "Still the Target." In "The Third Option," he argued that America should employ counterinsurgency to advance its goals abroad.
He was also the subject of a book by David Corn, "Blond Ghost: Ted Shackley and the CIA's Crusades."
Mr. Shackley is survived by his wife of 41 years, Hazel T. Shackley; their daughter, Suzanne Shackley of Pensacola, Fla.; and two grandsons.
A funeral Mass will be held today at 10 a.m. at the Church of the Little Flower, 5607 Massachusetts Ave., Bethesda. Interment will be in West Palm Beach at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the American Cancer Society.
In a special request, Mrs. Shackley asks that friends, colleagues and acquaintances jot down any anecdotes about Mr. Shackley so that she can read these items with her daughter and bind them into a booklet for her grandchildren.
Anecdotes can be faxed to 703/790-0264 or e-mailed to [email protected]

LOAD COMMENTS ()

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide