A nerve-racking prisoner exchange turns out to be a small piece in a much larger Taliban plot against Americans in "There's Something Else Going On," Episode 409 of Showtime's espionage thriller "Homeland."
Taliban commander Haissam Haqqani (Numan Acar) has agreed to release his battered hostage, former CIA Director Saul Berenson (Mandy Patinkin), if the U.S. frees five high-value terrorists held at Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan.
But Carrie Mathison (Claire Danes), CIA station chief in Islamabad, correctly senses there's greater treachery afoot. What she doesn't know is that Haqqani's primary goal is attacking the U.S. Embassy in Pakistan.
By the episode's conclusion, Haqqani and his thugs are poised to do just that as they rapidly make their way through a tunnel leading into the compound.
The tunnel's existence was revealed by Dennis Boyd (Mark Moses), the treasonous husband of U.S. Ambassador Martha Boyd (Laila Robins).
Dennis surrendered this critical information because he's being blackmailed by Tasneem Qureshi (Nimrat Kaur), a Taliban sympathizer with Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency.
Dennis also switched Carrie's prescription meds with a hallucinogen twice as powerful as LSD. The drug triggered a violent psychotic reaction that landed Carrie in jail. Fortunately, she was rescued by men working for Lt. Colonel Aasar Khan (Raza Jaffrey), a trustworthy ISI official.
"You poisoned me," Carrie yells at Dennis during his interrogation. "I could have died out there!"
When Dennis refuses to admit he's collaborating with the ISI, Carrie shows him a graphic video of previous CIA Station Chief Sandy Bachman (Corey Stoll) as he's stomped to death by an ISI-controlled mob. Look quick, she says, for Sandy is about to lose his face.
"These are the people you're spying for," Carrie exclaims, pointing out that Sandy was murdered to protect a far-reaching Taliban/ISI operation.
"It means almost certainly American lives are at stake," Carrie emphasizes, "either here or in Afghanistan or back at home."
Dennis finally confesses his traitorous actions to Martha when he realizes his life's in danger.