The Clandestine HUMINT page deals with the functions of that discipline, including espionage and active counterintelligence. This page deals with Clandestine HUMINT operational techniques, also called "tradecraft". It applies to clandestine operations for espionage, and for a clandestine phase prior to direct action (DA) or unconventional warfare (UW). Clandestine HUMINT sources may also act as local guides for special reconnaissance (SR).
Many of the techniques here are important in counterintelligence. Defensive counterintelligence personnel need to know them to recognize espionage, sabotage, etc. in process. Offensive counterintelligence specialists may actually use them against foreign intelligence services (FIS). While DA and UW can be conducted by national military or paramilitary organizations, al-Qaeda and similar non-state militant groups appear to use considerably different clandestine cell system structure, for command, control, and operations, than do national forces. Cell systems are evolving to more decentralized models, sometimes because they are enabled by new forms of electronic communications.
This page deals primarily with one's own assets. See double agent for additional information adversary sources that a country has turned to its own side.
Read more about Clandestine HUMINT Operational Techniques: Staff and Skills in A Clandestine HUMINT Operations Station, Basic Agent Recruiting, Basic Agent Operations, Direct Action Services
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... See Clandestine HUMINT and Covert Action for more history and detail ... ignoring an occasional euphemism, has now consolidated espionage into the National Clandestine Services ...
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