I have long felt that the effects of the clandestine services have been under-appreciated in world conflict. But then, they are clandestine. Certainly the efforts to deceive the Nazis during D-Day – convincing Hitler that the landing would be at Calais – probably meant the difference between success and catastrophic failure. If Stalin had paid attention to his master spy – telling him about Operation Barbarossa – perhaps the Nazi invasion wouldn’t have been so catastrophic. In today’s WSJ, a veteran CIA operative is explaining what will happen as a result of Putin’s invasion of the Ukraine.
I thought it was worth repeating.
By Douglas London
March 23, 2022 1:12 pm ET
After invading Ukraine, he’s tightening the screws the way the Soviets did—and that will help the CIA recruit Russians.
I have enjoyed my latest book, and I’m almost done. I ordered it based on this talk Christina Olds gave about her famous father, Robin.
Olds had always intended to write an autobiography, but it was not even started by the time he was dying. Christina promised him that she would do it, and I think her father would be proud of her. I believe that, like many in the 1940s, he kept a journal or diary because it is very detailed. One would think that General Olds himself wrote it.
Olds was the kind of leader that anyone would aspire to emulate, and he tells you his secrets in this book. When he came to Ubon, Thailand, he changed a lackluster Wing into a Wolfpack, no pun intended. One time, upon leaning that he was on the list to become a Brigadier General, he deliberately did something to sabotage that promotion, realizing that it would mean no more flying other than a desk.
A few days ago, on Facebook I posted of an experience I had in the late 70s. I was traveling the state of California, making cold calls to promote the family business. I think in sales, that is the toughest – meeting people who weren’t expecting you to make your pitch. And that is why many people can’t do this – they get discouraged. But I treated it like a numbers game – a couple of times I sold 5 accounts in 1 day, while there were a few times I would go for a week, or even longer, making no sales.
On the bad days I vowed to make 10 calls – no matter how it was going, slog it out.
Anyway there were some good aspects to this travel – seeing things I never would have seen, and meeting some memorable people along way.