James Bonds in Training? Controversial UK University to Offer Spying Degrees

The University of Buckingham, UK will offer students aspiring to be the next James Bond the opportunity to attain an undergraduate degree in security, intelligence and cyberthreats.

The course will launch in January, run by former government intelligence professional Julian Richards. He was quoted in The Times saying students are seeking more direct ways into intelligence services, and teaching of politics and international relations in Universities had become too focused on the “ills of the war on terror” and criticizing Western democracies, “missing the complexity of how states need to fight against the terrorist threat” in the process.

Universities have often been key centers of UK intelligence agency recruitment, with sometimes catastrophic results, as the example of the infamous ‘Cambridge Five’ — a quintet of aristocratic undergraduates who went on to penetrate the highest echelons of British society while spying for the Soviet Union — amply demonstrates.

Den of Spies

However, the University of Buckingham — one of only five private Universities in the UK, which avowedly espouses “libertarian”, free market ideas — has long been closely associated with state intelligence, having operated a dedicated ‘Center for Security and Intelligence Studies’ since 2008, offering masters degree courses in associated topics and disciplines.

Moreover, many of the University’s leading staff frequently appear in the mainstream media as…

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