‘Good Riddance’: Read the CIA’s Strange Easter Sunday Tweet
On Easter Sunday, the CIA’s official Twitter account sent out a rather strange message: “Good Riddance, Carrie Mathison.”
The tweet contained a link to a New York Times article about the Showtime series “Homeland.”
People were quick to wonder why the CIA was so invested in a TV show…
…but reading the Times article reveals the CIA’s interest: Women at the CIA were fed up with the way the “Homeland” character Mathison made them look, and they’re glad the character won’t be with the CIA at the start of the show’s next season.
The article also reveals that the Times didn’t come to the CIA — the CIA came to the Times.
“I talked to several current and former women at the C.I.A. at the request of the usually close-lipped agency,” wrote columnist Maureen Dowd.
The C.I.A. sisterhood is fed up with the flock of fictional C.I.A. women in movies and on TV who guzzle alcohol as they bed hop and drone drop, acting crazed and emotional, sleeping with terrorists and seducing assets.
“The problem is that [TV shows and movies] portray most women in such a one-dimensional way; whatever the character flaw is, that’s all they are,” said Gina Bennett, a slender, thoughtful mother of five who has been an analyst in the Counterterrorism Center over the course of 25 years and who first began sounding the alarm about Osama bin Laden back in 1993.
“It can leave a very distinct understanding of women at the agency — how we function, how we relate to men, how we engage in national security — that is pretty off,” Bennett said. She was sitting in a conference room at Langley decorated with photos of a memorial for the seven C.I.A. officers — including Bennett’s close friend Jennifer Matthews — who were blown up in 2009 by a Jordanian double agent in Khost, Afghanistan.
Agreed Sandra Grimes, a perky 69-year-old blonde who helped unmask her C.I.A. colleague Aldrich Ames as a double agent for the Russians after noticing that he had traded up from a battered Volvo to a Jaguar: “I wish they wouldn’t use centerfold models in tight clothes. We don’t look that way. And we don’t act that way.”
A better film representation of female spies, one of the agents told Dowd: Elastigirl from Pixar’s “The Incredibles.”