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Friday, June 13, 2014

Big Fraud in the Far Abroad, Part VII: The Not Suitable for Work or Children Portion (A)

A lot was going on. As I have written many times before, of course, our embassy in Colombo was doing many things other than just investigate Long and AC. We were doing our bit for the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq: working against the Iraqi embassy in Colombo, and, with the Australians, on the presence of AQ operatives in Colombo. We also had a mandate to work with the Norwegians to help end the Sri Lankan civil war, a horrid, nasty thing that had dragged on for decades, and to reach out to the small, about 10%, Muslim community and see whether AQ-type radicalization was occurring there. Our embassy was overworked but dedicated. On top of it all, of course, we had this lengthy ongoing and seemingly endless internal investigation. As noted previously, my personal relations with the Ambassador and others in the embassy and Washington had suffered because of the manner in which the investigation was initially conducted and the consequences of that for my career--from which said career never fully recovered.

Back to our story. 

We had a very eager-beaver Marine Security Guard (MSG) detachment. The NCO in charge of these six or seven guys was a combat veteran and took his job very seriously. He made them drill constantly practicing responses to different threat scenarios. These MSGs were no joke. I would not have wanted to be an intruder. Some nights the MSGs would practice "react" drills in the chancery building. These would involve kicking open doors, chucking in some sort of hand grenade (practice ones), and clearing a room. Some mornings we would find traces of the previous night's drill--e.g., a boot print on the door, a wobbly door frame, a dent in the wall where a practice stun or gas grenade had been thrown. In general, however, the guys were pretty good about cleaning up.

I remember one morning, however, finding my very large--I used to call it the USS Nimitz--and very old-fashion antique wooden desk completely cleared off: the phone on the floor, my computer on a chair, papers, pens, paper clips, and photos scattered around the room. I thought to myself, "React drill. Never mind, I don't want to get the Gunny into trouble because some of his guys did not clean up." I put the stuff back on my desk and resumed the life of the dutiful drone. A few days later this happened again. This time, as I walked into my office, Long was directly behind me coming to see me about some administrative issue.  She saw the state of the room, and, laughing, said, "The Marines must have been drilling last night. Don't worry about it, I will talk to the Gunny." Long cheerfully helped me put all my bureaucratic detritus back in place. 

This time, however, I wasn't buying the "react" story. I walked over to the RSO's office, and asked him if the MSGs had carried out one of their drills the previous night. "No, they did not," was the reply. I told him about the desk situation, and about how Long had wanted to be helpful by not getting the MSGs into trouble. We both went down to view the entry log at Marine Post One. Long had come in the prior night around 9 pm or so, if I remember correctly, and about thirty minutes later one of the MSGs, off-duty and the youngest on the detachment, had entered the building.

This now becomes a sad story and I will try to tell it as accurately as possible. 

The Gunny and RSO called in this young marine, whom the Gunny had told us was leaving the MSG program and the Marines in a couple of months to get married and start a security service business in Virginia. The bewildered youngster, confronting a bunch of glaring senior old guys, quickly confessed that he and Long would meet at the Chancery for sex--I guess that's a form of marine drill. On at least two occasions, Long had suggested use of MY LARGE DESK for their nocturnal passions--did you see what I wrote? MY DESK! The desk where I worked and often ate lunch! She seemed to find it funny to have wild sex on my desk at night, and next morning sit at that same desk across from me discussing mundane operational trivia.

Oh, yes, the kicker: the young marine was leaving the service to marry Long! He worried that she might be pregnant and wanted to do the right thing. 

The Gunny gave him an icy stare imported straight from hell and barked, "First of all she's already married. Second, pregnant? She's pregnant? You f------ idiot! Do you know how f------ old she is?" He did not know; he thought her at least twenty years younger than she was. It gets worse. He and Long had traveled together to Virginia a couple of months back; while there she had him set up a new bank account. She and the marine had looked at houses, ostensibly searching for the one they would buy to enjoy perpetual wedded bliss. Following that lead, investigators in DC discovered that Long was using the poor sap's account to deposit large sums of money and then quickly move them on, including to her "daughter" in Virginia. Through that "daughter," Long had links to a shady Iranian businessman in Alexandria, who, investigators discovered, ran a people smuggling and prostitution business in Virginia, as well as a real estate scam involving investor visas. He also kept Long's "daughter," the very one with whom my wife and I had battled monkeys in the tea country highlands, as his mistress, providing her a monthly stipend and a townhouse in northern Virginia. The "boyfriend" we had met in Colombo was some stiff who was to be the dispatcher at the limo service Long and AC were setting up in Colorado.

We had the young marine shipped out immediately; he was put under confinement, and ordered not to contact Long. In sum, Long ruined a young man's career. She, perhaps needless to point out, was not involved in victimless crime.  

I wanted to have my desk napalmed, but that might have given away the game. I had to settle for a thorough cleaning. Long asked me once or twice about the suddenly departed marine. We had developed a story about his getting into trouble with the Marines over something, and having to go back. She seemed nervous about it for a bit, but when she suffered no consequences, settled down to her usual charming self.

One more detail, Long had kept the trysts with the marine a secret from AC--that plays a role later on.

Haven't had enough sex, eh? OK, there's more. But, unfortunately, you'll have to wait; I have to give the dogs their baths. They stink.

That smell . . . kind of reminds me of my old desk . .  .

15 comments:

  1. Having seen something of the MSG at Bangkok back when, I don't envy those boys their jobs. They're young, alone, and in strange places. No wonder one in Moscow got used by a KGB Swallow; and no wonder the poor sap mentioned here got used by Long.

    But, having spent a lot of time in Taiwan as a teacher rather than as a diplomat, Long's use of your "USS Enterprise" Desk was a little like Lang Lang's playing "My Motherland" (theme from a ChiCom Korean War propaganda film) at a State Dinner in the White House--a kind of subtle, calculated insult. I'm waiting to read the upshot with bated breath. I don't think a TV show or film has ever kept me so captivated.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wow! You're spinning a cliffhanger here, Mr. A. I'm hoping it ends with Ms. Long and AC working out a 10-to-20 in Leavenworth.

    Oh, and that bastard BS that hung Scooter Libby out to dry? He should be in a cell right beside them...and for a longer term.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Mr. Mad,
    Looks like Long doesn't like you, made it personal. It's odd, because from all her other actions she seems to be afraid of you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, she was afraid, that's a good point, but thought that she hd me under control and that I was too stoooopid to figure out anything. In addition, they had another theory about the whole matter which I will lay out forthwith.

      Delete
  4. Oh, wow - you must have had to do some world-class acting in order to work and recreate alongside that skank for so many months. Yes, I google-searched and know how it all comes out, but I await with breathless anticipation the rest of the inside story.

    Interesting that some among you suspected that she wasn't the same Long Lee that worked at the Saigon Embassy...

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  5. And most of them kept the cash..and just passed the shit to others'.
    Sick..isn't it?
    leaperman

    ReplyDelete
  6. "I'm hoping it ends with Ms. Long and AC working out a 10-to-20 in Leavenworth."

    Unfortunately, no where near that long (they were released several years ago). Seems to me that they got off rather lightly, compared to say, Sestak.

    Your story is a prime example of why people should enjoy the journey instead of impatiently waiting to arrive at the destination. We all know how this ends (even those who haven't looked it up should be able to figure that much out), but I for one am in no hurry to get there. As far as I am concerned, you can write another fifty installments. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. With a few exceptions, the worse the crime, the shorter the time.

      If a thug robs a convenience store, the thug will serve more time than these diplomats and marines who betrayed their country’s trust, violated their oaths, engaged in slavery (yes, human trafficking is slavery), stole millions, etc. etc.

      I’m sure no one involved enjoyed prison time.

      I’m sure these criminals will be held in community disgrace for the rest of their lives, if they bother to live in that community instead of partying on the millions they stole.

      Delete
  7. "A very "eager-beaver" Marine Security Guard...."

    Interesting choice of words.

    -Blake

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    Replies
    1. Wondering when that would be picked up . . .

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    2. I'm waiting with bated breath regarding the rechristening of the USS Nimitz.

      Delete
    3. I knew there was a Canadian connection to this sordid tale.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y09YOkVmGg0

      Delete
    4. Any time you see some young man do an incredibly stupid thing which seems absurd beyond explanation...there's usually a woman involved.

      FWIW...I am a woman, and even I recognize this...can't wait to read more. Damn, this is riveting.

      Delete
  8. So this part was pre-2003-invasion?
    "working against the Iraqi embassy in Colombo"
    I would love to hear more about that.

    ReplyDelete
  9. There is a great line in "Blazing Saddles" (and at least one other film):

    "Gentlemen, affairs of state must take precedent over the affairs of state".

    In your case, that could possible include "State" as in the nation and "State" as in the dept. of.....

    ReplyDelete