CSIS Canada — “You could be the perfect spy.”

“You could be the perfect spy. All you need is a cause.”

“What’s your cause?” 

Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) – Tweet (February 25 2021)

February 27 2021 –Hoping to recruit new spies, the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) just tweeted a line from John le Carré’s 1986 novel A Perfect Spy. I wonder if this quote will really attract the best and the brightest considering that the story is about a double agent who lies to his family, betrays his country and ultimately takes his own life? Follow us on twitter: @Intel_Today

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Widely seen as Le Carré’s most autobiographical work, A Perfect Spy follows the tangled life and moral failings of Magnus Pym, a British spy who double-crosses his colleagues and spies for Czechoslovakia.

The book ends with Pym shooting himself in the head after years of duplicity finally catch up to him.

In the Twitosphere, many are wondering if CSIS recruiters actually understand the line they are quoting?

“Have…have y’all read the book? Or, you know. Like, any of his books,” tweeted one user.

“So potential Canadian spies should be inspired by the tale of someone who worked as a double agent and betrayed his country? This is most intriguing – what are you trying to tell us here?” tweeted another.

A Perfect Spy is a “morally tangled chronicle of modern espionage” portraying a “man who has played different roles for so long, he no longer knows who he is”.

It is not obvious that young Canadians dream of becoming another Magnus Pym…

“The tweet was a simple tribute to acclaimed spy novelist, David Cornwell, who wrote many books and recently passed away. Cornwell’s novels inspired generations of individuals to consider careers as intelligence professionals. It goes without saying that we encourage individuals who are interested in pursuing a career in security and intelligence to do so to protect their country and keep their fellow Canadians safe.”

REFERENCES

Olof Palmes minnesfond — Prize recipients

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CSIS Canada: “You could be the perfect spy.”

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