Taking A National Media Story Apart
“Leandro Aragoncillo, the alleged spy, who was half a million dollars in debt.“
Aragoncillo was $500,000 (Source: The Centre for Counterintelligence and Security Studies (CI Centre)™ in debt at the time of his arrest. The debt consisted mainly on mortgages for rental properties. It is not logical that $500,000 in debt for rental properties was static over a five year period. Whether or not this debt was burdensome is entirely dependent on the reliability of the net cash flow generated. This may have been a factor in “turning” Aragoncillo, however, “ethnic loyalties” is the most likely reason.
“Aragoncillo was working as an intelligence analyst for Vice President Al Gore.”
Aragoncillo was working, when he was arrested, as an intelligence analyst for the FBI. While assigned to the White House “worked for 31 months from July 1999 as an administration chief with the Vice Presidential Security detail, according to the Marine Corps.” Describing his position in the Vice President’s Office as “intelligence analyst” implies a much higher position of trust and responsibility than actually existed. Big Bubba’s bureaucratic instincts know that of the two, “intelligence analyst” and “administrative chief,” the latter could be a far more dangerous security risk than the former.
“Officials say Aragoncillo passed several lie detector tests that are routinely given to individuals with top secret clearances.”
This is probably true of the office/position where Aragoncillo was employed. Lie detector tests are not a routine requirement to maintain a security clearance. I do know that some government employees in sensitive positions are routinely given lie detector tests. I never took a lie detector test during my military service. I held a top secret/crypto clearance during most of my service. I only took one lie detector test during my entire Federal employment. That was given to me as a civil service employee and was not related to a security clearance issue.
“......they say he was put on a fast-track hiring plan based on his connections at the White House.”
This is an unlikely statement. Aragoncilla was a foot soldier in the trenches. It is unlikely that he ever swapped spit with Algore or Vice President Dick Cheney. Employees covered by the Office of Personnel Management hiring requirements have a difficult time shuffling through the employment back door. I submit that anything is possible. The question is whether it is likely. I personally do not believe that it was likely. I believe that Aragoncilla was hired based on his own merits and qualifications. The thought that he was hired because of his personal clout is ludicrous. We are talking about a naturalized citizen and retired Marine Corps Gunnery Sergeant E7. Trust me. There are ex White House employees with more clout.
"People who knew him and worked close to him said his office space was festooned with pictures of the White House, him with the president, him with the vice president," said Cloonan, the former FBI agent. "Believe me, that carries a lot of input and a lot of sway."
I am not sure whose universe Cloonan was an FBI agent in, but his conclusions do seem a tad ridiculous. I think that the more likely scenario would be snickering and finger pointing behind Aragoncilla’s back. I have observed from early childhood until my middle age, up close and personal, the government picture taking industry. My house is full of photos taken on the government dime of people, places and events. You can bet your last yankee dollar that every stiff, slug or employee whoever passed through the White House gates, of any administration, was offered a photo op with the President of the United States. It’s good public relations for the highest ranking politician in the land.