Normal Topic Polygraph "Testing" and the 1995 Chinese "Walk-in" (Read 8639 times)
Paste Member Name in Quick Reply Box George Maschke (Guest)

Polygraph "Testing" and the 1995 Chinese "Walk-in"
Oct 19th, 2000 at 11:39am
Mark & QuoteQuote Print Post  
In chapter 2 of The Lie Behind the Lie Detector  
(, Gino Scalabrini and I 

   In 1995, a "walk-in" approached the Central 
   Intelligence Agency outside of the PRC and provided 
   an official PRC document classified "Secret" that 
   contained design information on the W-88 Trident 
   D-5 warhead, the most modern in the U.S. arsenal, 
   as well as technical information concerning other 
   thermonuclear warheads.
 Thus began an ongoing investigation of suspected Chinese 
 espionage within the Department of Energy, according to 
 chapter 2 of the report of the House Select Committee on U.S. 
 National Security and Military/Commercial Concerns with the 
 People's Republic of China, more commonly known as the "Cox 
 Report." But in the very next paragraph, the Cox Report 
   The CIA later determined that the "walk-in" was 
   directed by the PRC intelligence services. 
   Nonetheless, the CIA and other Intelligence 
   Community analysts that reviewed the document 
   concluded that it contained U.S. thermonuclear 
   warhead design information. 
 The Cox Report does not disclose how the CIA determined that 
 the "walk-in" was "directed by the PRC intelligence 
 services." Nor does the Cox Report offer any insight into why 
 the PRC intelligence services would provide the CIA with 
 documents that could reasonably be expected to compromise 
 their own sources and methods.
 Could it be that the CIA determined that the "walk-in" was 
 directed by the PRC intelligence services because a CIA 
 polygrapher found portents of prevarication when he gazed 
 into the polygraph charts? As previously noted (p. 16), 
 hundreds of CIA employees were unable to pass their polygraph 
 screening exams in the wake of Aldrich Ames' arrest in 1994, 
 and the 1995 "walk-in" incident occurred squarely in that 
 wake. If the CIA did terminate its relationship with the 
 "walk-in" based on the voodoo science of polygraphy, then it 
 committed a blunder of monumental proportions.
The Cox Report is available on-line at: 

Support for our speculation on the role of polygraphy in CIA's 
determination that the "walk-in" was a double agent appears in 
today's (Thursday, 19 Oct. 2000) Washington Post in an article by 
Walter Pincus and Vernon Loeb entitled, "Spy Probe Shifts to 

Pincus and Loeb write: 

 Because of the CIA's belief that the walk-in was a double 
 agent, a full translation of the documents seemed less 
 pressing. "He failed an agency polygraph," one intelligence 
 official explained. The CIA's suspicions about the informant 
 also slowed the FBI's already limited investigation at Los 
 Alamos of Wen Ho Lee.
The only "evidence" thus far publicly provided for CIA's 
conclusion seems to be that he "failed an agency polygraph." 
However, because polygraph "tests" are easy to beat (see chapter 4 
of The Lie Behind the Lie Detector), and foreign intelligence 
services are likely to know this, and because these "tests" also 
have a built-in  bias against truthful persons (chapter 3), the 
fact that the walk-in "failed" seems to be pretty good evidence 
that he was not, after all, a Chinese double agent.

The FBI does not believe that the defector was a double agent. 
Pincus and Loeb report:

 The CIA concluded several years ago that the defector who 
 supplied the documents was a Chinese double agent, casting 
 doubt on the information he delivered and delaying its 
 translation from Mandarin to English. But the FBI, which has 
 interviewed the defector in the United States, believes that 
 he is legitimate. The CIA now says the evidence about the 
 defector is "inconclusive," but agrees that the information 
 he handed over has proven accurate, a senior government 
 official said this week.
This seems to be yet another case where the U.S. Government's 
reliance on unreliable polygraph "testing" has caused serious 
damage to America's national security. It's high time that those 
responsible for our reliance on the voodoo science of polygraphy 
be held accountable.

George Maschke

ps: I'll be without Internet access for the next 3 weeks, 
but replies are welcome. I'll respond when I return.

« Last Edit: Feb 16th, 2021 at 7:45am by George W. Maschke »  
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Paste Member Name in Quick Reply Box james

Re: Polygraph "Testing" and the 1995 Chinese "Walk
Reply #1 - Dec 5th, 2000 at 1:16pm
Mark & QuoteQuote Print Post  
any idea about "stroop test" used in "lie detecting"?
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Polygraph "Testing" and the 1995 Chinese "Walk-in"

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