Bowser practicing his roar.
There are three main types of spies. There are ones that spy on a country’s enemies, ones that spy on a country’s allies, and ones that spy on a country’s own people. These spies would act differently, have different organization, and be positioned as different types of people. Spy craft isn’t always hiding in shadows and sneaking around on roofs. It’s a lot of knowing how to talk to people and convincing people on their side to work on your side.
Spying on an enemy country generally involves a lot of convincing people to spy for you within key positions in the government. Especially with relatively homogenous countries with people that look significantly different from each other, it’s too difficult to get into any sort of key position in the government. Virtually any civil service position or governmental office—or, really, anything that takes a security clearance—would be impossible to access if you look like the enemy. Instead, you need to get people on the inside to work for you. There are a lot of tools to use to get them to do that—money, love, a promise of protection. This is done both during a time of war and prior to a time of war. During a time of war, you want to see what they’re doing, what their plans are, what their troop movements will be, how much they know. Before a time of war, you want to see what their plans are in regards to potentially starting a war, how they’re talking to to ally with, how you might be able to negotiate, how you might be able to turn their people against them or overthrow their government.
Spying on an allied country can involve what was just described, but it can also involve getting your own people on the inside. Ambassadors or even businessmen can get into relatively high places, because they are trusted. They will sometimes be included in major discussions. There are a few reasons to spy on an ally. The first is to make sure that they really are an ally. The second is to make sure that they are not working with anyone who isn’t an ally, and if they are, what they’re doing with them. The third is to figure out what to do if they ever become not an ally. Another is just that, the more information you have, the better. There are more reasons, but those are some of the main ones.
Spying on your own people can be done in a number of ways. Depending on the level of technology, it can be done a la NSA by tracking what people look at and who they talk to. It can be done by physically watching people, either with cameras or with people in the streets. How much you need to spy on your people depends on how afraid you are of them and how likely they are to rise up against you.
How people spy changes as technology does. The Enigma code was all well and good during World War II, when it takes months or years of manpower to break codes. Supercomputers make brute forcing codes a lot easier. Cameras and planes can see a lot farther than people on foot, and they can record much more accurate information. But they record different information. If you’re on foot, in the middle, you can see emotion, you can see rebellion brewing. If you’re in the air, taking pictures, you can see weapons caches and oil refineries. If everyone is on horses, they can’t travel as quickly as they can in cars or planes. Like with everything, as technology, so does how people spy.
Spies aren’t always assassins, which is being used in this case to generally refer to some who performs assassinations rather than to Nizari Ismailis. People like this idea of the dark spy running around killing people in the middle of the night. That’s not always practical. The same thing that makes a person a good spy—the fact that they’re a woman, or a businessman, or innocuous-looking—might also make him or her a bad assassin. One of the only cases where it would be practical would be if it was impossible to get people in and out, and this was the only person on the inside, and there wasn’t a sufficient level of technology to kill them remotely (such as drones).
Prostitutes can make great spies. People talk in bed. They will talk to someone who they think has no power, who can never talk, because they’re just some common prostitute. The prostitute won’t be recognized, she (or he) can hide in plain sight. They can be a trophy on someone’s arm or someone wandering on the streets.
There are three main roles that a spy plays. According to a lecture from a spy who couldn’t give us his name, the roles are as follows: to prevent surprise attacks, to provide information for national security, and to provide longtime expertise. If the spy that you’ve created in your head isn’t doing any of those things, think about what they are doing. Is it that important that their country would risk their life and send them into another country? If not, why are they there?
The Addams’ Family racebend:
- Gina Torres as Morticia Addams
- Willow Smith as Wednesday Addams
Titanic conspiracy exposed
Head canon: Accepted
Hugh Dancy in “Our Idiot Brother”
Anatomy of Cartoon Characters - by Michael Paulus
That is awesome, disturbing, and awesome again.