Fred Rustmann, a retired member of the CIA’s elite senior intelligence service, tells Newsmax TV that he was “flabbergasted” when the agency denied the transcript for his first novel, “The Case Officer.”
“They just said ‘no’ because it’s based on your experiences and information that you picked up when you were active in the CIA,” Rustmann, who also is a member of the advisory board for the LIGNET.com website, tells Newsmax. “It was one paragraph.”
“Normally, they’ll go through and say, ‘Redact this and redact that and change this and change that’ — because they don’t want any classified information to be in the book. But it was, just, ‘You can’t publish this book. No.’
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“I spent a lot of time working on this thing and a lot of effort went into it,” Rustmann adds. “I wrote back to them and said: ‘You know I don’t deserve this. There’s nothing in there that’s classified. There’s no techniques. You know sources and methods are the big thing.’
“There are no sources, obviously, and there are no methods in there that haven’t been used by police departments and intelligence groups in the last 50 years,” he says.
A 24-year veteran of the CIA’s Clandestine Service, Rustmann retired with the equivalent rank of major general. He served as an instructor at the CIA’s storied covert training facility, “the Farm.”
He now heads the CTC International Group Inc., the pioneering business-intelligence firm he founded after his retirement. His first book was a nonfiction work, “CIA Inc.: Espionage and the Craft of Business Intelligence.”
Rustmann’s novel centers around CIA case officer “Mac” MacMurphy, a former Marine sniper who uncovers an intricate plot by Iran to draw China into a terrorist alliance against the United States. He takes matters into his own hands amid complacency within the CIA hierarchy.
Mac’s journey takes readers through such lands as Somalia, Ethiopia, Hong Kong, and Paris.
“It was my experiences, a lot,” Rustmann tells Newsmax. “The first half is very, very accurate as to how operations are run. The main character is based a lot of on my own experiences, but he’s still a composite of people.”
In fact, Rustmann says in the book, “for my colleagues, you’re going to recognize some of the people in here — good and bad.”
While he tells Newsmax that he “doesn’t want to give away too much” about Mac’s worldwide exploits, Rustmann did say that he is already planning a sequel, “Plausible Denial.”
It takes place after Mac retires from the CIA. He gets an assignment — from his former boss.
“He’s got the money, he’s got the expertise, he’s got the team, he can do stuff,” Rustmann says. “But the agency, because of this politically correct atmosphere that we have today, is largely impotent to do covert-action type operations.”
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