According to Gamepedia's Covert Ops Article, the Recruit Defectors Covert Ops mission Recruit Defectors symbolwill:

Gives the player a set of random military units at their capital.

I've attempted this Covert Op several times, but I haven't yet succeeded. What I'm curious about is how much damage some covert ops actually cause on the victim nation. It seems like there are always credits to siphon ("Despite the name of the operation, the defender does not lose any"). So I wonder does Recruit Defectors actually take an enemy unit from the target nation or does nothing negative happen to the victims?

Does the 'Recruit Defectors" covert Op actually remove units from the victim nation? or does it only produce new units?

If the victim doesn't lose units, does the victim civ suffer any negative effects?

1 Answer 1


The victim civ does not lose units. If you succeed in the Op, you recieve between 1 and 3 military units buildable by that civ, and the target city recieves +20 intrigue points.

The only "damaging" part of the Op (outside of using the newly acquired units against the civ) is the intrigue increase, which may make the city vulnerable to more damaging Ops (Hack Satellites, Coup D'etat, Call Worm Strike, etc.).

  • Just to add a bit of context from the game files behind the scenes, the ops from 0 to 3 intrigue are "benefit only", that is they only have a positive effect on the one doing the op and no effect on the victim. 4 and 5 are where the "damaging" ops are, that actually have negative effects on the target. (ie satellite crash, coup, and the affinity ops.)
    – Tarkenfire
    Commented Jan 21, 2015 at 23:10

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