The agency functions together with the MID (Main Intelligence Directorate) which is entrusted with the responsibility of military intelligence. For instance, the agency is authorized with the responsibility of managing anti-terrorist corporations as well as sharing intelligence arrangements to analyze and disseminate intelligence information to the office of the president. A relevant scenario happened in 1999 when the SVR defined the position of Russia in the conflict of the nuclear technology transfer to Iran. The agency later modified the treaty arrangement of the Anti-Ballistic Missile (Malcolm 32). The SVR is supposed to inform the Russian President of intelligence activities through daily briefs similar to the intelligence community observed in the United States. Nonetheless, in Russia, the SVR recommends the best policies to be adopted by the president as well as the exploration of a preferable option.
A notable recent espionage event presently relates to the activities of the SVR together with the military intelligence agencies as they operate against the US more actively as compared during the Cold War period. After KGB was disbanded in the late 1980s, SVR was formed to counter the increased organized crime, selected agents and the Russian weapons that were used by the militia sects to destabilize the security status of the country (Bukkvoll 13). The additional special agents that enhance the activities of the SVR include legal immigrants who reside in foreign countries as scientists and other professionals, while others are illegal officers who function under deep cover (Yablokov 630). For example, recently, several high-profile Russian agents were discovered in the US, among them were Robert Philip Hanssen, Harold James Nicholson, Aldrich Hazen Ames among others.
The SVR recruits Russian citizens living abroad; they are typically identified, then approached in their residence and persuaded to join the agency. In the event where the potential officer rejects the offer, the would-be recruit threatens the individual with the legal prosecution in Russian law – if the refusal persists, the agency fabricates the charges (Yablokov 630). The foreign intelligence service mostly preys on successful Russian business-persons living abroad, the majority of the business-persons end up swearing allegiance upon the agency’s persuasion. As such, only Russian immigrants without double citizenship are the preferred recruit agents (Schwab 394). Foreign intelligence services also include collaboration with other nations through the sharing of information; an excellent example is cooperation witnessed between Russia and China in the year 1992 where a treaty was signed. The agreement was taken undercover involving the SVR, the Russian military intelligence, and the Chinese army directorate. The intelligence service has also conducted several political driven assassinations abroad, which are also believed to have continued to date. The SVR involvement in the treaty was evidenced when Igor the Assassin, who as Alexander Litvinenko’s prisoner was established to be an agent of the SVR (Yablokov 630).
Again, in 2003, an SVR assassin was discovered while preparing to assassinate Boris Berezovsky using a binary firearm in London. The SVR also executes its operations through the internet by misinforming the public. In the US, several SVR intelligence agents accessed the internet through the New York Public Library undetected and published propaganda over the educational website through emails sent to the country’s broadcasters (Schwab 394). The disinformation was released by the SVR officers who intended to create an excellent reputation for Russia while causing unrest and discord within the US and provoke Anti-American outlooks. In conclusion, the foreign intelligence service is tasked with the duty of handling any information considered to be a threat to a nation as well as national security. These threats encompass intentions, activities, and capabilities of other countries, persons, or organizations, except counterintelligence (CI) but include international terrorists’ operations. In Russia, the SVR agency deals with the foreign intelligence. The formation of the agency came after the dissolution of the KGB following the disbandment of the Soviet Union. The agency is also allowed to collaborate with other nations or organizations to accomplish its operations. For example, the SVR once collaborated with Saddam Hussein and China. SVR agents are strictly Russian citizens living abroad, where successful business persons are the preferred would-be recruits. As a result, the Russian Foreign Intelligence Services is successful in achieving its operations.
However, the paper can recommend that while the operations are conducted, ethical policies should be taken into consideration. For example, political assassinations and spread of propaganda to whitewash Russia’s reputation only soil the country’s image. The recruitment process should embrace moral elements and ethical aspects. In the same way, an individual who actively refuses the recruitment offer should not be persuaded using death threats and other legal fabricated charges in the Russian Law.
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