World Food Prize Ambassador Quinn
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THE ARCHIVE OF AMBASSADOR KENNETH M. QUINN
FROM THE MISSISSIPPI TO THE MEKONG
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An Espionage Case Linking Paris, Washington, and Hanoi

1/12/77

Continuing his description of the State Department negotiations with the North Vietnamese communist government in Paris, Amb. Quinn relates how Assistant Secretary Richard Holbrooke and he are informed by the Justice Department that State Department classified documents were being compromised and delivered to the North Vietnamese. The espionage plot was uncovered thanks to a double agent, a Vietnamese woman trusted by the Communists, but who had a relationship to the CIA and FBI. Amb. Quinn is tasked to evaluate the documents and assess the damage done to U.S. negotiating interests. Through this review, he comes to see that all of the documents that had been secretly conveyed to the North Vietnamese had in fact come through the USIA communication center. That made Amb. Quinn think of Ronald Humphrey, the officer who had first come to see him two years earlier to tell him of his efforts to free his Vietnamese fiancé, who was trapped in Saigon. Perceiving both a motive and access, Amb. Quinn informs the State Department security officials about his suspicion of Humphrey, thus identifying one of the individuals engaged in this pernicious espionage operation.

© 2020 World Food Prize Ambassador Quinn. All rights reserved.