Escort or spy, sex will get you the secrets

In July 2012, over 60 Turkish officers and over 20 escorts have been arrested in connection to a “sex for secrets” plot that may have provided Turkish enemies with vital information about the Turkish military and its strategies. The officials claim that the Turkish officers staged chance meetings between escorts and high-ranking officials in order to obtain information through intimate sessions. Sex-for-secrets is not a new information gathering technique — not at all! Using human urges and sensual cravings as a weakness has been occurring since the first days of the first wars on this planet. Several instances in history have become famous, and it proves that double agents with sex appeal were much more likely to get “the goods” than those who didn’t use their sexuality to their advantages.

One such example is Josephine Baker, who in World War II, snuck important secret messages across enemy lines past the Nazis in order to help the French Resistance. Baker was an American-born French singer and dancer who made burlesque mainstream in Europe. Her performances featured skirts made from bananas and topless dances. Her sex appeal and fame afforded her less scrutiny from Axis soldiers and she was able to transport messages across the lines to allied forces. Additionally, she used flirtation and sensuality to engage soldiers and politicians in conversation, hoping to pick up secrets she could pass along to the French Resistance effort. She was honored for her efforts with the French Legion of Honor.

Sex and sex appeal seem to loosen the lips of even the most loyal soldier, and they rarely suspect that the information will eventually be used against them.

Belle Boyd succeeded in obtaining significant information and news from Union soldiers during the Confederate War as a spy. She was coined the “Cleopatra of Secession” and was able to pass along details about Union whereabouts and plans acquired through her charm and allure. Despite being arrested several times for her efforts, she was awarded the Southern Cross of Honor by General Stonewall Jackson for her efforts to help the rebels.

Marthe Richard was known as a prostitute as early as 1905 and eventually put her skills to use as a spy immediately following World War I. She became a spy reporting to Captain Georges Ladoux and reported information she gained from her Russian anarchist lover. However, through her spying, she also discovered the Ladoux was a double-agent working for Germany. Richard was able to get close to several Gestapo members during World War II and provide allied forces with much information to aid their efforts. Due to her efforts, she had a price put on her head by the Nazis. After the way, she became a politician and retired to writing erotic fiction.

Long before these others, Casanova, the infamous lover, poet, con man and rogue, worked for the Venetian and French courts as a spy, reporting the secrets he had been told through his escapades and dalliances with courtesans and royals. He was able to capitalize on his charm in order to seduce women and learn their secrets, which were many. Women sat through conversations with men about world policy and military activities regularly, without the men ever thinking they were sharing secrets with them. However, the women were more than willing to share these secrets with Casanova in the heat of the moment.

Marilyn Monroe, American actress, had well-established affairs with both Bobby Kennedy and President John F. Kennedy. Although her death was labeled a suicide from taking too many pills, many conspiracy theorists believe she was murdered because she knew too much. It is suggested that JFK shared too many secrets with her, and as she wasn’t getting enough attention as a mistress, she was threatening to “blow the lid off the whole thing”. Some surmise that she was taken out of the equation because they feared she would endanger national security, which is Politically Correct for “let people know what rich and powerful do when there are no cameras around”. Others suggest that she had too many secrets about the president and his connections to organized crime, which boils down to the same reason to get rid of her. Rumors hold that her home was full of extensive, state-of-the-art bugging equipment installed by the CIA. Either way, her death may underscore the fact that secrets are often shared in intimate settings and she knew a lot of things above her paygrade.

Finally, the mother of all sexual spies is Mata Hari. She was a Dutch-born exotic dancer and courtesan. Working as a double agent in France during WWI, she was executed by a firing squad for espionage. She became a spy through a long, winding path where she was a mail order bride to the Dutch East Indies in 1895, became an exotic dancer in 1905 and eventually became known as the model for the modern day image of the femme fatale. German documents unsealed in the 1970s indicate that she did serve the Nazi forces as a spy, working in France as a double agent. She used her sensuality, exoticness and flirtatiousness to get close to French officials and officers. She was known as extremely promiscuous and helped to bring sensuality to the performance stage… in addition to the spy industry.

All in all, keeping secrets is an ongoing battle, even today. Man will likely never overcome his lust for the flesh, so anytime that he is tempted, there is an opportunity for enemies to acquire important information. Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley recently opined that the Colombian escorts caught in the Secret Service scandal could’ve been Russian spies just as easily as they were regular prostitutes (that national security argument again).