Earlier this week, web-based whistleblowers WikiLeaks released information that seemingly reveals that CIA spies/hackers regularly enter Europe using so-called ‘black’ diplomatic passports, and use the US consulate in Frankfurt as their operations base. Ironically, this news broke during the same week in which the European Parliament voted to end US passport holders’ visa-free access to the EU. If these allegation are proved true, it will hardly help their case.
Julian Assange may still be warming a room at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, but the website he helped found and is still the face of – secret information revealers WikiLeaks – are still managing to create a stir without him at the helm. Their latest revelations which appeared on their website earlier this week seem to reveal that the United States’ Central Intelligence Agency – the infamous CIA – grant “black passports”, code for State Department diplomatic cover, to their hackers while they are on special covert ops in Africa, the Middle East and Europe, and that the US consulate in Frankfurt is their HQ.
“Biggest Ever Leak Of CIA Documents”
On Tuesday, 8,761 documents – which are said to originate from the internal network at Cyber Intelligence Center, located in the CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia – were released into the public domain via WikiLeaks, and have been described as “the biggest ever leak of confidential documents from the CIA.” The documents contain detailed instructions for Europe-bound CIA hackers, and range from the trivial (“Flying Lufthansa: Booze is free so enjoy (within reason)!” “Gas stations are not recommended for fine dining!”) to the kind stuff featured in a John Le Carré novel.
WikiLeaks themselves claim that: “Once in Frankfurt, CIA hackers can travel without further border checks to the 25 European countries that are part of the Schengen open border area – including France, Italy and Switzerland.”
According to the documents, it is clear that the official cover story that the hackers use should they be stopped by German customs officials is that they are in Frankfurt “supporting technical consultations at the Consulate.” This storyline should apparently be good enough for them to “breeze through German Customs” CIA Agents are also encouraged to “plan mini-breaks, network with their colleagues and purchase something from a duty free shop before travelling home”.
An Information “Dirty Bomb”
Soon after WikiLeaks detonated their latest information “dirty bomb”, the German Federal Prosecutors Office announced their intention of thoroughly examining all 8,761 of the WikiLeaks documents, and are clearly deeply concerned as to the allegations that the CIA used the US consulate in Frankfurt (pictured) as a base for a campaign of covert hacking in Europe.
As of yet, the authenticity of the documents is yet to be verified but if true, the US consulate in Frankfurt would appear to be in effect the base of operations for the CCIE (Center for Cyber Intelligence Europe). The CCIE is notorious for allegedly carrying out lengthy and sustained covert hacking campaigns throughout Europe, as well the Middle East and Africa.
“We will initiate an investigation if we see evidence of concrete criminal acts or specific perpetrators. We’re looking at it very carefully,” a spokesman for the German Federal Prosecutor’s Office said on Wednesday.
WikiLeaks Previous US-German Revelations
WikiLeaks have a history of embarrassing the US government by releasing information as to their covert involvement in Germany. In 2015 they published three intercepts of conversations that had been held by German Chancellor Angela Merkel (pictured), which had been recorded by the National Security Agency (NSA), an intelligence organization of the United States federal government responsible for “global monitoring, collection, and processing of information”. Apparently the NSA had been bugging Chancellor Merkel’s phones for years.
Earlier this week, in retaliation for the Trump administration’s decision to request visas from citizens of EU nations Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Poland and Romania wishing to enter the US, the European Parliament voted to end visa-free travel to European Union countries for US citizens.
WikiLeaks’ apparent revelations that not only have the US been sending CIA hackers to spy on European nations, but granting them diplomatic immunity and so called “black passports” to do so may ultimately strengthen the European Parliament’s resolve to uphold their decision. Sadly, this is a story that looks set to run and run.