Caught Red-Handed: 20 Spies the U.S. Uncovered

Espionage plays a dramatic role in the world of international relations, with spies lurking in the shadows, their betrayals sometimes shifting the balance of global power. How many of these infamous spies have you heard of? Here, we expose 20 covert operatives who were caught red-handed.

1. Aldrich Ames

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Aldrich Ames, a CIA officer turned traitor, caused devastating losses to U.S. intelligence. Arrested in 1994, he had sold secrets to the Soviet Union for nearly a decade, directly leading to the execution of several U.S. spies in Russia.

2. Julius and Ethel Rosenberg

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The Rosenbergs were American citizens who handed over atomic secrets to the Soviet Union. Their espionage was so severe that it led to their execution in 1953, marking a chilling chapter in Cold War history.

3. Robert Hanssen

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In one of the most grievous betrayals in American history, FBI agent Robert Hanssen sold U.S. intelligence secrets to Russia from 1979 until his capture in 2001. His duplicity not only endangered lives but also severely damaged national security.

4. Ana Montes

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Dubbed the “Queen of Cuba,” Ana Montes spied for Cuba while working as a Defense Intelligence Agency analyst. For over 16 years, she fed Cuba crucial U.S. secrets, betraying her oath and compromising national safety until her arrest in 2001.

5. John Anthony Walker

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Starting in 1967, Navy officer John Walker ran a spy ring that provided the Soviets with vital U.S. cryptographic secrets. His treachery went undetected for nearly two decades, gravely endangering U.S. naval operations.

6. Jonathan Pollard

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As a civilian intelligence analyst for the U.S. Navy, Pollard passed thousands of classified documents to Israel in the 1980s. His actions strained U.S.-Israel relations when they were uncovered, and he served 30 years in prison for his crimes.

7. David Henry Barnett

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A CIA agent who sold secrets to the Soviet Union in the 1970s, Barnett’s betrayal put numerous lives and operations at risk. He was caught and became one of the first CIA officers to be convicted of espionage.

8. Earl Edwin Pitts

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An FBI agent turned spy, Pitts began selling intelligence to the Soviets in the late 1980s. Arrested in 1996, his case underscored the ongoing vulnerability of American intelligence services to insider threats.

9. George Trofimoff

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A retired U.S. Army Reserve colonel, Trofimoff was charged in 2000 for spying for the Soviet Union over several decades, making him the highest-ranking military officer in U.S. history to be convicted of espionage.

10. Clayton J. Lonetree

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Lonetree, a U.S. Marine Corps security guard at the American Embassy in Moscow, handed over documents to the KGB in the 1980s. His betrayal was the first known case of a U.S. Marine acting as a Soviet spy.

11. Richard Miller

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An FBI agent who compromised himself by becoming romantically involved with a Soviet agent, Miller traded secrets for gold and cash in the 1980s. His arrest highlighted vulnerabilities within the FBI.

12. Ronald Pelton

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Communications specialist Ronald Pelton sold key NSA secrets to the Soviet Union, including details about U.S. espionage satellites. Arrested in 1986, his treason was a major blow to U.S. intelligence capabilities.

13. Kendall Myers

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Recruited by Cuba in 1978, Myers and his wife Gwendolyn passed U.S. secrets to Havana for nearly 30 years while he worked for the State Department. Their long-term espionage was a stark reminder of the persistent threat of insider threats.

14. James Hall III

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An army warrant officer and intelligence analyst, Hall III sold classified documents to East Germany and the Soviet Union during the 1980s, which included vital U.S. war plans.

15. Glenn Michael Souther

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Souther, a U.S. Navy intelligence specialist, defected to the Soviet Union in 1986 after being recruited as a spy. His defection was a dramatic betrayal during the Cold War.

16. Sharon Scranage

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A CIA clerk in Ghana, Scranage revealed the identities of U.S. agents to her Ghanaian boyfriend who was a spy. Her actions led to the compromise of several operations in Africa during the 1980s.

17. Michael Walker

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Part of the Walker spy ring led by his father, John Walker, Michael helped steal cryptographic secrets that severely compromised U.S. Navy communications.

18. Walter Kendall Myers

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Walter Myers, another member of the State Department turned spy for Cuba, leveraged his high-clearance security position to provide Cuba with piles of sensitive American diplomatic information.

19. Brian Regan

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A former Air Force intelligence specialist, Regan offered to sell classified U.S. government information to Libya, Iraq, and China. He was arrested in 2001 just as he was about to board a flight with detailed information on satellite systems.

20. Ana Belen Montes

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Before her arrest just after the September 11 attacks, Montes severely compromised America’s clandestine operations against Cuba by informing the Cuban government about U.S. surveillance activities.

Exposing Traitors

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These cases of espionage reveal a sobering truth: the battle for intelligence is relentless, with loyalties constantly tested and the stakes unimaginably high. As these stories unfold, they remind us of the complex interplay of ethics, loyalty, and national security in the shadowy world of spying.

The post Traitors: 20 Spies the U.S. Uncovered first appeared on Mama Say What?!

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For transparency, this content was partly developed with AI assistance and carefully curated by an experienced editor to be informative and ensure accuracy.

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