I’m a little leery of a Washington Post column that calls itself “Spy Talk.” I thought the whole point of being a spy is that you don’t talk. Which makes it easy to say you’re a spy; who’s going to deny it? Actually, in this Internet world of ours, there’s always someone ready to call you out. To wit: Roland W. Haas, a senior intelligence officer in the U.S. Army Reserve. In a 2007, Haas wrote a “memoir” called Enter the Past Tense: My Secret Life as a CIA Assassin. Apparently not. “Haas was a fraud,” retired CIA polygrapher John F. Sullivan wrote to commanders. “I am certain that you are as aware as I am that Mr. Haas’ book is 99 percent fiction, but I know also that for you to acknowledge this would leave your component’s hiring and personnel policies open to criticism.” See how that works? Down the rabbit hole we go . . .
How about this? In today’s piece, WaPo’s Spy Talk columnist Jeff Stein complains that his previous article on the Haas controversy has “mysteriously vanished from the Internet.” He even provides a link that loops to the paper’s home page, instead of the relevant column.
Now, to Haas’ death. For that, we turn to Georgia’s times-herald.com:
A fatal shooting that took place Saturday night on Forest Circle, just off Shenandoah Boulevard near Highway 34 East, has been ruled accidental, say Coweta County authorities.
The victim, Roland W. Haas, 58, suffered a single gunshot to his right leg, which ruptured his femoral artery, according to Major James Yarbrough of the Coweta County Sheriff’s Office.
Haas, a resident of the Park Manor Apartments, was reportedly leaving his apartment Saturday just before 10 p.m. when he pulled his vehicle to the side of Forest Circle just past the area of the apartments and just short of Shenandoah Boulevard.
A passing motorists saw Haas on the side of the road and heard the pop of a gunshot. A motorist stopped and asked if he was OK and he said that he was. That motorist traveled to a nearby gas station and called 911. A second passing motorist returned to a nearby apartment and notified police.
Yarbrough said an officer happened to be on Shenandoah Boulevard and responded to the scene immediately. That officer found Haas lying face down at the back of his car.
Haas was pronounced dead at the scene by Coweta County Assistant Coroner Della Dean, according to the major.
So . . . a highly ironic suicide gone wrong? A re-enactment of the Beatles’ Rocky Raccoon? (“It’s OK Doc, it’s only a scratch.”) Maybe . . .
On Monday, the GBI ruled Haas’ death accidental, according to Yarbrough. Authorities believe the victim was in medical distress at the time of the shooting. He was in diabetic shock, he suffered heart disease and had “several other things going on,” according to the major.
Ah yes, those “several other things.” Such as plans to assassinate someone for real, to vindicate himself? The mind boggles. Meanwhile, muzzle discipline people. Muzzle discipline.