‘Something Has Aroused the Sleeping Tiger’
U.S. officials released new details Tuesday on the case against suspected spy Robert Philip Hanssen, including what is described as his farewell letter to his Russian handlers. Hanssen, a veteran FBI counterintelligence official, wrote the letter after realizing that the government suspected him of spying, U.S. officials said. The encrypted letter, signed with what authorities say was Hanssen’s code name, was contained on a computer disk that he allegedly left at a park in suburban Washington on Feb. 18, just minutes before the FBI arrested him. It read:
I thank you for your assistance these many years. It seems, however, that my greatest utility has come to an end, and it is time to seclude myself from active service.
Since communicating last, and one wonders if because of it, I have been promoted to a higher do-nothing Senior Executive job outside of regular access to informaiton [sic] within the counterintelligence program. It is as if I am being isolated. Furthermore, I believe I have detected repeated bursting radio signal emanations from my vehicle. I have not found their source, but as you wisely do, I will leave this alone, for knowledge of their existence is sufficient. Amusing the games children play. In this, however, I strongly suspect you should have concerns for the integrity of your compartment concerning knowledge of my efforts on your behalf. Something has aroused the sleeping tiger. Perhaps you know better than I.
Life is full of ups and downs.
My hope is that, if you respond to this constant-conditions-of-connection message, you will have provided some sufficient means of re-contact besides it. If not, I will be in contact next year, same time same place. Perhaps the correlation of forces and circumstances then will have improved.