ESPIONAGE

The Cuban Spies Next Door

How could Walter and Gwendolyn Myers, perfect neighbors in their affluent DC community, be accused of spying for Cuba for three decades? The Myers’ felt a long-standing, well-hidden disdain for U.S. politics. "I have become so bitter these past few months. Watching the evening news is a radicalizing experience," Myers wrote in his diary in 1978. When he visited Cuba (and had a Cuban intelligence officer as a guide), the high-clearance State Department official found an inspiration in the revolution there. But the pair never mentioned Cuba, and didn’t express out of the ordinary political opinions (“We were all appalled by the Bush years,” one neighbor said.). "When I heard they were arrested, I felt like they had arrested Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny," said a friend who docks his boat next to the Myers’ sloop. The Myers are accused of passing information by exchanging grocery carts in stores, using a shortwave radio given to them by the Cuban government, and sending encrypted emails in Internet cafes.