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Former CIA Operative Explains How Spies Use Disguises | WIRED

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Former CIA Operative Explains How Spies Use Disguises | WIRED

Former Chief of Disguise for the CIA, Jonna Mendez, explains how disguises are used in the CIA, and what aspects to the deception make for an effective disguise.

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Former CIA Operative Explains How Spies Use Disguises | WIRED
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Deception, Illusion, and Espionage: An Unlikely Recipe for Success | Jonna Mendez | TEDxFoggyBottom

As the Former Chief of Disguise for the CIA, Jonna Mendez reveals the undertaking of creating identity transformations for US covert agents. With astonishing stories and pictures, she shares her experiences working in the CIA opposition effort against the KGB where she trained valuable assets in some of the least hospitable countries in the world.

Jonna Mendez is a retired CIA intelligence officer with 27 years of service. During her career she lived overseas on multiple assignments, under cover, serving tours of duty in Europe, South Asia and the Far East. Her work took her throughout Western Europe, the sub-continent and Asia. Retiring in 1993, she had risen to the position of Chief of Disguise and the rank of GS-14 earning the CIA’s Intelligence Commendation Medal. As Chief of Disguise she was responsible for a worldwide staff that created identity transformations for both CIA officers and foreign assets working with the U.S. government. Since retiring from the CIA, Jonna has continued her career as a fine art photographer, a consultant/lecturer and an author. She and her husband, Antonio J. Mendez, have collaborated on a book about their work against the Soviets in Moscow during the last decade of the Cold War. The title of the book is Spy Dust. She also worked closely with her husband in the writing of ARGO. They have just finished their next book, The Moscow Rules, to be published in May 2019. Jonna is also a founding board member at the International Spy Museum in Washington, D.C.

This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at
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Former CIA agent uses spy skills to fix faces

Robert Barron spent 24 years in the CIA creating disguises for undercover agents. He retired from the agency but continues to use his skills to help those who are disfigured. As Julianna Goldman reports, Barron's ability to put people in hiding, is now being used to bring others out of hiding.
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The CIA's ex-chief of disguise on how to hide a spy

This week on The Takeout, CBS News' Major Garrett speaks to former CIA chief of disguise Jonna Mendez about what makes a good disguise.
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Former FBI Agent Explains How to Read Body Language | Tradecraft | WIRED

Former FBI agent and body language expert Joe Navarro breaks down the various ways we communicate non-verbally. What does it mean when we fold our arms? Why do we interlace our fingers? Can a poker player actually hide their body language?

Check out Joe's book The Dictionary of Body Language

Books By Joe Navarro:
Joe Navarro Body Language Academy:

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WIRED is where tomorrow is realized. Through thought-provoking stories and videos, WIRED explores the future of business, innovation, and culture.

Former FBI Agent Explains How to Read Body Language | Tradecraft | WIRED

How CIA Operative Fooled President Bush

Jonna Mendez, the fomer CIA Chief of Disguise sits down with Patrick Bet-David to talk about her life in the CIA. In this short clip she covers how she tricked President H. W. Bush with her mask at the White House. The full interview coming soon on Valuetainment. Make sure to subscribe to Valuetainment for the updates:

About Jonna Mendez: Jonna Hiestand Mendez is a retired CIA intelligence officer with over 25 years of service. When she retired in 1993 she had risen to the position of Chief of Disguise at the CIA

About Valuetainment: Founded in 2012 by Patrick Bet-David to impact entrepreneurs around the world through value and entertainment (hence Valuetainment). We cover all things entrepreneur related and want to inspire or help all types of entrepreneurs on their journey to success. Meanwhile providing them unique perspectives and insights from some of the most interesting and popular minds in media today.

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Ex-CIA Officer: Here's How to 'Work Like A Spy'

J.C. Carleson, former CIA officer and author of Work Like A Spy, offers spy-based business tips on how to get ahead in corporate America.

Meet a Former CIA Chief of Disguise | Object of Intrigue | Atlas Obscura

Meet Jonna Mendez, the former CIA Chief of Disguise (a real job!). During her tenure, Mendez oversaw the equipment used by spies to conceal their identities, including a five-second mask, which had been inspired by Hollywood. The technology, developed over a period of 10 years, allowed for facial movement—and, unlike its cinematic counterparts, which required hours in the makeup chair, it could be put on and removed at a moment’s notice. Listen to Mendez explain the ins and outs of this unique piece of spy technology. 

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To learn more about the International Spy Museum's collection of unique objects, visit their website here: And a special thanks to Clint Emerson, the owner of this fascinating mask.

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Qualities of a Great CIA Agent

Jonna Mendez, the fomer CIA Chief of Disguise sits down with Patrick Bet-David to talk about her life in the CIA. In this short clip she covers Qualities of a Great CIA Agent full interview coming soon on Valuetainment. Make sure to subscribe to Valuetainment for the updates:

About Jonna Mendez: Jonna Hiestand Mendez is a retired CIA intelligence officer with over 25 years of service. When she retired in 1993 she had risen to the position of Chief of Disguise at the CIA

About Valuetainment: Founded in 2012 by Patrick Bet-David to impact entrepreneurs around the world through value and entertainment (hence Valuetainment). We cover all things entrepreneur related and want to inspire or help all types of entrepreneurs on their journey to success. Meanwhile providing them unique perspectives and insights from some of the most interesting and popular minds in media today.

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JONNA MENDEZ: INSIDE THE CIA AND THE MOSCOW RULES

This program is part of our Good Lit series, underwritten by the Bernard Osher Foundation.

The action-packed, technology-filled life of spies can be intoxicating to read about or watch on TV. Nowadays, it is hard to imagine these kinds of scenes playing out in real life—but for Jonna Mendez, a former covert operative in the Soviet Union and former chief of disguise for the CIA, everything from complex disguises to “Spiderman” rappelling technology to high-speed car chases were part of her daily life.

Her new book, The Moscow Rules: The Secret CIA Tactics That Helped America Win the Cold War, recounts the most exciting parts of the job, as well as the moments with the highest stakes for U.S. interests. Together with her co-author and husband Antonio Mendez, she explains the techniques and technologies that helped the Americans get one step ahead of the KGB.

Join us for a conversation with a real-life spy about her experiences as a covert operative and her role in the advancement of the American intelligence strategy that helped America win the Cold War.
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CIA Chief Disguise Officer Opens Up

Jonna Mendez, the fomer CIA Chief of Disguise sits down with Patrick Bet-David to talk about her life in the CIA. Make sure to subscribe to Valuetainment for the updates:

About Jonna Mendez: Jonna Hiestand Mendez is a retired CIA intelligence officer with over 25 years of service. When she retired in 1993 she had risen to the position of Chief of Disguise at the CIA

Link to Jonna Mendez's book The Moscow Rules:
About Valuetainment: Founded in 2012 by Patrick Bet-David to impact entrepreneurs around the world through value and entertainment (hence Valuetainment). We cover all things entrepreneur related and want to inspire or help all types of entrepreneurs on their journey to success. Meanwhile providing them unique perspectives and insights from some of the most interesting and popular minds in media today.

Music selection used through agreement with Epidemic Sound

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Keeping an FBI agent's identity secret - The Fifth Estate

How do you tell the story of someone when you can't use their name or show their face? Producer Timothy Sawa takes you inside how The Fifth Estate team worked to keep the identity of undercover FBI agent Tamer Elnoury secret. He was an undercover officer working on the streets of New Jersey before he started working with the FBI. In June of 2012, he got a call from his bosses. They wanted him to check out men they believed were involved in a terrorist plot to blow up a Canadian passenger train. Tamer Elnoury, who is an Arabic-speaking Muslim, was perfectly positioned to infiltrate a group of suspected terrorists.
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About the fifth estate : For four decades The Fifth Estate has been Canada's premier investigative documentary program. Hosts Bob McKeown, Habiba Nosheen, Gillian Findlay and Mark Kelley continue a tradition of provocative and fearless journalism. the fifth estate brings in-depth investigations that matter to Canadians – delivering a dazzling parade of political leaders, controversial characters and ordinary people whose lives were touched by triumph or tragedy.

Self-Defense Lessons with a Former CIA Agent | Rachael Ray Show

More from Rachael Ray:
John Hanson -- a real-life action hero -- shows Rach how to use a flashlight as a weapon, escape a chokehold and even defeat duct tape!
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When Two CIA Spies Get Married

Jonna Mendez, the fomer CIA Chief of Disguise sits down with Patrick Bet-David to talk about her life in the CIA. In this short clip she covers how it was being married to a CIA Agent. The full interview coming soon on Valuetainment. Make sure to subscribe to Valuetainment for the updates:

About Jonna Mendez: Jonna Hiestand Mendez is a retired CIA intelligence officer with over 25 years of service. When she retired in 1993 she had risen to the position of Chief of Disguise at the CIA

About Valuetainment: Founded in 2012 by Patrick Bet-David to impact entrepreneurs around the world through value and entertainment (hence Valuetainment). We cover all things entrepreneur related and want to inspire or help all types of entrepreneurs on their journey to success. Meanwhile providing them unique perspectives and insights from some of the most interesting and popular minds in media today.

To reach the Valuetainment team you can email: info@valuetainment.com

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CIA Officer On Disguise Techniques/Tradecraft

Thank You for watching my Interview with Ex CIA Officer/Operative Andrew Bustamante. We talked about a multitude of different long term disguise techniques, and we even learned some good life lessons! Please be sure to share this video on your social media and definitely check out all of Andy's social media accounts!

Andy's Social Media Links!

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Former KGB Spy Rates 9 Russian Spy Scenes In Movies | How Real Is It?

Jack Barsky is a former sleeper agent of the KGB who spied on the US from 1978 to 1988. After being exposed, he turned FBI informant and has since stayed in the United States, becoming a published author of Deep Undercover and an expert on espionage and Russian intelligence. He was recruited into the KGB after being approached by a member of the East German secret police at the University of Jena in 1969.

Barsky rates the realism of Russian spying tactics such as message interception, surveillance, and sleeper cells in The Fourth Protocol (1987), Anna (2019), Bridge of Spies (2015), Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011), and the popular TV show The Americans (2013-2018).

He also breaks down physical training and spies' backgrounds in Red Sparrow (2018), Salt (2010), and Black Widow's first on-screen appearance in Iron Man 2 (2010). He also discusses the Bond movie franchise and its depiction of Russian spies in From Russia With Love (1963).

MORE HOW REAL IS IT VIDEOS:
SAS Soldier Breaks Down 11 Military Scenes

Explosives Expert Rates Unrealistic Movie Explosions

Ex-Mob Boss Rates 13 Mafia Movie Scenes


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Former KGB Spy Rates 9 Russian Spy Scenes In Movies | How Real Is It?

Former FBI Agent Explains How to Read Facial Expressions | WIRED

Former FBI agent and body language expert Joe Navarro is back, this time to breaks down the non-verbal ways we communicate using facial expressions. What does it mean when we scrunch up our noses or show tension in the glabella? Joe also goes deep into chirality, and equates this concept with some of the most quizzical of human expressions.

Check out Joe's book The Dictionary of Body Language


Books By Joe Navarro:
Joe Navarro Body Language Academy:

Still haven’t subscribed to WIRED on YouTube? ►►
Listen to the Get WIRED podcast ►►

Get more incredible stories on science and tech with our daily newsletter:

Also, check out the free WIRED channel on Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Android TV. Here you can find your favorite WIRED shows and new episodes of our latest hit series Tradecraft.

ABOUT WIRED
WIRED is where tomorrow is realized. Through thought-provoking stories and videos, WIRED explores the future of business, innovation, and culture.

Former FBI Agent Explains How to Read Facial Expressions | WIRED

Retired Navy SEAL Explains How to Prepare for Dangerous Situations | Tradecraft | WIRED

Clint Emerson, retired Navy SEAL and crisis management professional, explains how we can prepare for almost any emergency situation by being ultra aware of our surroundings.

Still haven’t subscribed to WIRED on YouTube? ►►
Listen to the Get WIRED podcast ►►

Get more incredible stories on science and tech with our daily newsletter:

Also, check out the free WIRED channel on Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Android TV. Here you can find your favorite WIRED shows and new episodes of our latest hit series Tradecraft.

ABOUT WIRED
WIRED is where tomorrow is realized. Through thought-provoking stories and videos, WIRED explores the future of business, innovation, and culture.

Retired Navy SEAL Explains How to Prepare for Dangerous Situations | Tradecraft | WIRED

Jonna Mendez - My Bond Moment

Hear real stories from real spies as they share their Bond moments.

Jonna Mendez spans over twenty-seven years with the CIA including serving as the Chief of Disguise. Her duties included instructing the CIA's most highly placed foreign assets in the use of spy assets and the processing of intelligence gathered by them. She is married to ARGO real life hero, Antonio J. Mendez.

CIA disguise secrets & spy escape & evasion

Jonna Mendez & Jason Hanson stopped by Morning Extra to talk about working for the CIA and what they did for disguises.

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