Spy scandal prompts a tour.
By Jane Clark
Strip malls and suburban parks generally don’t rate tour-bus drive-bys, unless, of course, they’re tied to a juicy scandal. So it’s not surprising that the somewhat ordinary locales that figure into the latest intelligence community scandal would become fodder for new tour.
“We could call it The Bridges of Fairfax County,” says Carol Bessette, who will lead an April 22 tour of northern Virginia haunts — including a number of footbridges — use as drop sites by Robert Hanssen, the Washington-based FBI agent who was accused in February of spying for the Russians.
Price of the four-hour all-Hanssen tour, which could be incorporated later into more mainstream Washington spy tours also operated by Bessette, is $45. Proceeds will benefit the Cold War Museum, an as-yet “virtual” museum, operated by Francis Gary Powers Jr., son of the U-2 spy plane pilot who was shot down over the Soviet Union in 1960.
Says Powers of the Hanssen case: “It’s horrible in that it happened to our security apparatus, but I couldn’t bought better press.”
Originally published in USA Today, Friday, April 6, 2001.
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