The CIA stepped in to prevent the United States from closing a consulate in the Persian Gulf city-state of Dubai, arguing that it was a gold mine of human intelligence from Iran.
That’s according a new book, “City of Gold: Dubai and the Dream of Capitalism,” by former Associated Press correspondent Jim Krane.
The State Department tried “more than once” to shut down its consular services office in Dubai for budget reasons.
But it ran up against the resistance of senior intelligence officials.
For decades, they’d been gleaning precious information about Iran by grilling hundreds of Iranian visa applicants, according to the book.
The CIA several times over the years managed to convince the State Department to make cuts elsewhere, Krane writes in the book, released in the U.S. this week.
Iranians applying for U.S. visas in the United Arab Emirates city of Dubai are “monitored, interrogated and, sometimes, recruited into spying on their own government” by Iran specialists and Farsi speakers working for the CIA or other American agencies, the book says.