In a break from their usual business of overthrowing South American governments, covering up alien landings, and broadcasting coded messages through my fillings, the CIA has revived a program that teams up spies and scientists for the study of climate change. Through the program, scientists get access classified images of the polar ice caps, as well as the chance to pick the targets of off-duty spy satellites.
What better cover for a government spy than to claim retirement and run a museum? E. Peter Earnest, a 36-year veteran of the Central Intelligence Agency, couldn't think of one, so he teamed up with the International Spy Museum, which opened in Washington, D.C., in July. Visitors adopt a cover, go to spy school, break codes, identify operatives, fall under covert surveillance, and learn about the lives of secret agents. The museum also boasts the largest collection of spy gadgets ever assembled for public display-more than 600 in all. Here's a sampling of the more intriguing curios.