I Spy

I Spy

Spies don’t talk—it’s the cardinal rule of the business. But on Foreign Policy’s podcast I Spy, we get them to open up. We hear from the operations people: the spies who steal secrets, kill adversaries, and turn agents into double agents. Each episode features one spy telling one dramatic story.

Episodes

May 7, 2021 35 min
While we're working on our new season, we wanted to share with you an episode of another podcast we're enjoying: Cautionary Tales. On the show, host Tim Harford tells stories of awful human error, tragic catastrophes, daring heists and hilarious fiascos. In this episode, Tim describes the trial of an art forger who fooled revered art connoisseurs... and even the Nazis. You can hear more episodes of Cautionary Tales on your ...
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This is part 2 of Frank Snepp's story. Snepp was a CIA analyst based in Saigon during the Vietnam War. In April of 1975, he discovered that Communist forces were preparing a large-scale attack on Saigon—but the higher ups refused to believe it. When the attack began later that month, the Americans conducted a frenzied evacuation, leaving behind many Vietnamese allies. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoic...
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March 2, 2021 29 min
Frank Snepp was a CIA analyst based in Saigon during the Vietnam War. In April of 1975, he discovered that Communist forces were preparing a large-scale attack on Saigon—but the higher ups refused to believe it. When the attack began later that month, the Americans conducted a frenzied evacuation, leaving behind many Vietnamese allies. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
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February 23, 2021 34 min
The FBI's Ali Soufan specialized in Al Qaeda investigations both before and after the attacks of September 11th. In 2002 he was sent to question Abu Zubaydah, a high-level jihadi captured in Pakistan. But after several rounds of interrogation at the secret site, he was sidelined by a CIA contractor who had helped develop a new torture program for the agency.   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
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February 16, 2021 37 min
Jay Dobyns was a special agent for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. In 2002, he infiltrated the Hells Angels biker gang and spent two years undercover—a period in which he says he worried every single day about getting exposed and killed by the group.   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
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February 9, 2021 33 min
The British spy agency MIV recruited Willie Carlin to infiltrate Sinn Fein in Northern Ireland. He spied on the group for 11 years until his cover was blown.   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
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February 2, 2021 31 min
FBI special agent George Piro spent seven months interrogating deposed Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, establishing a rapport and then getting him to reveal the truth about the country's weapons of mass destruction. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
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January 28, 2021 29 min
This is part 2 of the story with DEA special agent Steve Murphy, who goes to Bogota, Colombia, to hunt for the head of the Medellin Cartel, Pablo Escobar. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
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January 19, 2021 30 min
Welcome to Season 3 of I Spy. On this episode, DEA special agent Steve Murphy is sent to Bogota, Colombia to hunt for the head of the Medellin Cartel, Pablo Escobar. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
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January 12, 2021 1 min
More spies, more Margo Martindale. Hey there I Spy listeners, here's the trailer for season 3. We'll have eight new episodes starting January 19. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
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June 16, 2020 31 min
CIA analyst Sarah Carlson spent a year at the U.S. Mission in Libya after the attack that killed four Americans in Benghazi. When battles between rival Libyan militias edged closer and closer to the U.S. compound, she and the other personnel there were forced to flee the country in a harrowing overland journey. Carlson’s story wraps up Season 2 of I Spy. We’ll be back soon with more episodes. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit...
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June 9, 2020 36 min
Mubin Shaikh poses as a Muslim extremist to nab Canadians who planned to stage large-scale attacks on government targets. The group he infiltrated would come to be known as the Toronto 18. This season, there’s more I Spy with I Spy Plus. Get ad-free I Spy episodes and access to weekly bonus episodes right in your favorite podcast app, plus more exclusive espionage content. Subscribe to I Spy Plus today at foreignpolicy.com/ispy. Le...
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June 2, 2020 33 min
Naveed Jamali worked at his parents’ specialty book business, a little company that counted among its regular customers one very unusual client: a Russian spy. Jamali hatched a plan to nab the Russian that turned into a three-year odyssey, requiring him to work as an FBI informant and pose as a Russian asset. This season, there’s more I Spy with I Spy Plus. Get ad-free I Spy episodes and access to weekly bonus episodes right in you...
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May 26, 2020 32 min
Martha Peterson handled one of the most valuable Soviet spies of the Cold War, code-named TRIGON—until the KGB got wind of the operation. Peterson was a young undercover officer working at the American embassy in Moscow in the mid-70s. She was the first female operations officers assigned the Soviet Union for the CIA. This season, there’s more I Spy with I Spy Plus. Get ad-free I Spy episodes and access to weekly bonus episodes rig...
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May 19, 2020 27 min
Thomas Drake joined the NSA in 2001 to help deal with the glut of data created by the huge rise of Internet use around the world. But he grew increasingly troubled by something else: the way the U.S. government was targeting its own citizens for surveillance after the attacks of September 11. This season, there’s more I Spy with I Spy Plus. Get ad-free I Spy episodes and access to weekly bonus episodes right in your favorite podcas...
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May 12, 2020 32 min
On this episode, CIA officer Milt Bearden helps a KGB defector make a new life in the United States. But the Russian, Vitaly Yurchenko, discovers America can be a strange and lonely place. This season, there’s more I Spy with I Spy Plus. Get ad-free I Spy episodes and access to weekly bonus episodes right in your favorite podcast app, plus more exclusive espionage content. Subscribe to I Spy Plus today at foreignpolicy.com/ispy. Le...
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May 5, 2020 30 min
On this episode, CIA targeting officer Nada Bakos leads a two-year hunt for one of the most dangerous militants in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. This season, there’s more I Spy with I Spy Plus. Get ad-free I Spy episodes and access to weekly bonus episodes right in your favorite podcast app, plus more exclusive espionage content. Subscribe to I Spy Plus today at foreignpolicy.com/ispy. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphon...
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April 28, 2020 38 min
Welcome to Season 2 of I Spy. On this episode, CIA officer Richard Holm is sent to Congo in 1965 to organize local agents against an anti-government rebellion. But a fiery plane crash leaves him in hostile territory, fighting for his life. This season, there’s more I Spy with I Spy Plus. Get ad-free I Spy episodes and access to weekly bonus episodes right in your favorite podcast app, plus more exclusive espionage content. Subscrib...
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April 23, 2020 1 min
Foreign Policy’s hit show returns Tuesday, April 28 with the first of eight new episodes. From a former CIA officer’s retelling of how he survived a plane crash in the Congo to the hunt for Abu Musab al-Zarqawi in Iraq – tune in to hear more spies tell the stories of clandestine operations in their own words. And this season, there’s more I Spy with I Spy Plus. Get ad-free I Spy episodes and weekly bonus episodes right in your podc...
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December 10, 2019 25 min
A man jumps from a burning plane, exposing a covert U.S. operation and nearly bringing down the president. This week on I Spy, Eugene Hasenfus tells his story. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
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