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These knights of the cloak and dagger wage their war in peacetime. Information rules the world, so secret agents are needed.
It's not for nothing that films are made about them, books are written. Nevertheless, the most famous secret agents are worth talking about.
Kim Philby (1912-1988). The story of this man's life is so dizzying that it will surely become the basis for the script of some spy film. Kim was born in India to a British official. The Philby line was quite old. The boy was educated in England, where he then graduated with honors from the Cambridge School. In 1929, Philby entered Cambridge, where he showed sympathy for socialist views. In 1934, Kim was recruited by the Soviet intelligence agent Arnold Dein. During the Spanish Civil War, Philby traveled there as a reporter for The Times, along with his first secret assignments. In 1940, a Soviet spy became an employee of the British Secret Service and quickly made a career there. Formally, Philby is fighting Soviet spies, but in fact, he regularly supplies Moscow with secret documents. As a result, many British agents and informers were exposed. In the 1950s, Moscow's high-ranking spies in England began to reveal themselves, and Philby was also suspected. After a short retirement, he again becomes an MI6 employee. Now his field of action is Beirut. As a result, in 1963, Philby was illegally smuggled to the USSR, where the spy was showered with state awards and a pension. Only now the enthusiasm for all the charms of socialism quickly faded away. Philby turned out to be of no use to anyone and began to drink. In the USSR, who believed in the justice of a spy, a severe disappointment awaited.
Nathan Hale (1755-1776). Hale is considered the first American spy. In his homeland, he is revered as a national hero, he has become a symbol of the struggle of his people for independence. Nathan was born into the family of a wealthy farmer. At the age of 18, the young man graduated with honors from Yale University. At first he wanted to become a priest, like his brother, but then he decided to choose the path of a teacher. The young teacher's place of work was a school for the offspring of noble families in New London. As soon as the first shots sounded, signaling the start of the American War of Independence, the young patriotic teacher joined the army. Hale's letters have survived, in which he told how Washington managed to turn the militia into a regular army. Nathan showed courage during the battles and rose to the rank of captain in the ranger squad. When Washington needed a spy to find out more about the British, Hale volunteered. Even if this was not part of his duties, and there was a great risk of being discovered, the ardent young man decided to serve the cause of his country. In mid-September 1776, he left the camp and in civilian clothes disguised as a teacher went to New York. Within a week Hale obtained the required information, but on the appointed day he signaled not to his, but to the English boat. The spy was captured, and notes were found under the insoles of his shoes. Hale gave his rank and the purpose of his mission. He was sentenced to death. The last words of the brave spy were: "I am very sorry that I have only one life that I can give for the Motherland." Today, many monuments have been erected to Nathan Hale in America, which are decorated with the hero's posthumous phrase.
Fritz Ducaine (1877-1956). This spy's life is teeming with adventures that James Bond would have envied. Ducaine graduated from the University of London and later from the Royal Military Academy in Brussels. With the outbreak of the Boer War, the young man travels to South Africa and joins the Boer commando, where he receives the rank of captain. Captures, escapes, captured gold - the plot for an exciting action movie. As a result, Ducane enters England through Paris, where he enlists in the army of his recent enemy. And again the officer goes to South Africa. There he suddenly finds out that the British burned down his family estate and destroyed his relatives. Then Fritz declared personal war on the British and even began to gather his army. Ducane is captured and thrown into the Cape Town jail, and then redirected to Bermuda. Attempts to escape fail, but German smugglers help, who transport Fritz to America. There Ducaine began working as a journalist, visiting the hottest spots. A handsome man, who knows 5 languages, a brilliant storyteller, is popular with women. During the First World War, Ducane, who has a pathological hatred of the British, begins to cooperate with the Germans. Disguised as a rubber researcher, he goes to Brazil. But the samples he collected, transported exclusively on British ships, never reach anywhere - the ships disappeared without a trace along the way. In 1916, Ducane, disguised as a Russian prince, got on board the heavy cruiser Hampshire. On the way, the spy transmits a signal to a German submarine, while he himself escapes on a raft. This operation brought the Iron Cross to the scout. Despite rumors circulating about Dukein's death (at the hands of the savages of the Amazon!), He was arrested in 1917. Both the Americans and the British have an interest in Fritz's tricks. The paralyzed spy is transferred to the hospital, where he remains motionless for 2 years. But then he manages to escape by sawing a sieve and disguised as a woman. Only in 1932, the spy was caught, and his next mistress handed him over. Despite the demands for extradition from the British, the court decides that the case should be closed due to the years ago. In 1941 Ducane comes across again. It turns out that over the past 10 years, he managed to organize the largest German spy network in the country. At the trial, Dukein claims that in this way he was taking revenge on the British for their crimes in the Boer War. Despite the fact that the spy is already 64 years old, he is sentenced to 20 years in prison. Dukein served 14 of them and was released weak and exhausted, other prisoners constantly beat him. Two years later, the famous spy died in poverty in a city hospital.
Sydney Reilly (1873-1925). This British intelligence officer was nicknamed the "King of Espionage". He was born under the name Georgy Rosenblum in the south of Russia - either in Odessa, or in Kherson. At the age of 19, a young student was arrested for participating in a revolutionary circle. Having learned the truth about his real parents, the young man realized that nothing else keeps him in his homeland. On an English ship he left for South America, where he took the name Pedro. Reilly did the most rough work, but was spotted by British scouts and redirected to the UK. There the name of the future spy was formed. Reilly enlisted in British intelligence and went to Russia. Disguised as a timber merchant, the spy traveled to Port Arthur, where he managed to get military cards and sell them to the Japanese. Until the First World War, Reilly lived under the guise of an antique dealer in St. Petersburg, acting as an assistant to the British naval attaché. In 1918, a spy represents his country on an allied mission, trying to recruit Red officers. In May 1918, he was already on the Don and was able to take them out to Kerensky's Russia. The SR revolt on July 6, 1918 in Moscow was coordinated by Reilly. In post-revolutionary Moscow, the spy casually recruited Soviet employees, he even had a pass to the Kremlin. He pretended to be a criminal investigation officer, a Turk, an antique dealer. The authorities began to hunt for an English spy who appeared in different cities of the country, then in London. Reilly also infiltrated the ranks of anti-Soviet emigrants. In 1925, after another border crossing, the spy was finally captured. Reilly told her what he knew and was shot. The super agent, who organized many conspiracies, became very popular in the film industry and the USSR and the West. It is believed that it was from him that James Bond was written.
Richard Sorge (1895-1944). The father of the famous scout was a German oil producer, whom fate brought to Baku. In 1898 the family moved to Germany. In his youth, Richard took part in the battles on the fields of the First World War, was wounded, awarded and commissioned. In the hospital, Sorge met the socialists and began to study the works of Marx. In 1919, Richard joined the German Communist Party and began to conduct campaigning work. In 1924, Sorge moved to the Soviet Union and received citizenship. Since 1926, the former German began to serve in intelligence. Since 1930, Sorge has been working in China, where he organizes an agent network. Soon the Soviet spy moved to Japan, where he portrayed a reporter for influential German newspapers. During the wave of repressions of 1937-1938, the Soviet leadership persistently called its agent home. But he apparently guessed why, and refused to return, as this could harm the work. Despite the refusal to obey the Center, Sorge still supplied Moscow with data. The period of work 1939-1941 is considered the most important. The scout was able to warn that Germany was preparing an attack on the USSR. However, Stalin did not believe this report. The second time "Ramsay" transmitted the most important data in the fall of 1941. He was able to find out that the Japanese did not intend to attack the Soviet Union in the near future. This made it possible to transfer 26 fresh divisions from the Far East just into the heat of the battle near Moscow, which predetermined the victory of the Red Army. In October 1941, Sorge was arrested by the Japanese and sentenced to death. Hitler personally demanded the extradition of the traitor. In 1944, the spy was executed. It is interesting that the USSR did not recognize for 20 years that Sorge was an intelligence officer. Only in 1964 he was declassified, and he was awarded the title of Hero of the Soviet Union.
Aldrich Ames (born 1941). If most spies work for ideological or political reasons, there will always be those who are only interested in money. Ames was a hereditary intelligence agent, his father also collaborated with the CIA. The pinnacle of Aldrich's career came in 1985, when he was appointed head of the department that controls CIA counterintelligence in the USSR. His wife was also an agent. The scandal erupted in 1994. The couple was arrested; it turned out that they had collaborated with the KGB for the last 9 years. Thanks to Ames, from 12 to 25 CIA agents were arrested, in the midst of the Cold War, the United States was left without valuable sources. When the special services began to look for shelter within their organization, they were alarmed by the luxurious life of the Ames couple. The couple bought a house, a luxury car, shares and a couple of apartments, telling stories about their wife's inheritance. Even though the high salary of a high-ranking official did not dispose to this. During his cooperation with the KGB, Ames received about $ 2.5 million. The capture of the spy caused a scandal. The head of the CIA, James Woolvey, resigned. It turned out that no one could even approximately estimate the amount of information sold by the spy. The press laughed at the CIA with might and main, because it turned out that Ames freely took secret documents at home, went to the Soviet embassy, threw floppy disks with collected information. And the authorities were looking for a classic spy by detective standards, not seeing him in a harmless employee. As a result, Ames is serving a life sentence, but his wife managed to stay free with some of the money.
Klaus Fuchs (1911-1988). The German physicist at 22 joined the ranks of the Communist Party, disillusioned with the Social Democrats. But his political views forced Fuchs to flee to Britain. The communists went underground, and Fuchs himself was sentenced to death in absentia. At the University of Bristol, the German received a doctorate in physics. Since 1941, under the leadership of Professor Born, Fuchs has been working in a group of nuclear scientists. Realizing the threat of new weapons, he turned over his portion of the Manhattan Project's research to the Soviet Union. Moreover, this was done unselfishly, out of political convictions. The scientist himself found the Soviet resident and passed on the information. Over time, Fuchs transmitted information about the bomb device. In 1942, the physicist received English citizenship, he was entrusted with classified materials on the progress of such developments in Germany. As a result, Fuchs even managed to get into Oppenheimer's team, at the very heart of the project. As a result, the USSR was able to create atomic weapons amazingly quickly. This raised suspicion. The special services began to check all those involved, in 1950 Fuchs was arrested. It turned out that his information allowed the Soviet Union to develop a new weapon not in 10 years, but in just 3 years. On the basis of documents from Fuchs, information in a hydrogen bomb came to the USSR, which made it possible to start work on even earlier than in the USA. The spy was sentenced to 14 years, since formally England and the USSR were still considered allies. Fuchs was released in 1959 and lived in the GDR until the end of his life.
Robert Hanssen (born 1944). Nothing foreshadowed a career as a spy in this typically American career. Hanssen graduated from college, where, by the way, he also studied Russian. Robert planned to become a dentist, but then received an MBA. In 1972, Hanssen became a police officer, working in internal security. Since 1976, the promising officer has been working for the FBI. In 1978, he already got into the main office in New York, where he was engaged in counterintelligence. Since 1983, the American has been working in the Soviet analytical department. Hanssen's collaboration with the Soviet Union began around 1985. Moscow received a lot of information about the electronic intelligence of its enemy, that the FBI had dug a tunnel under the embassy building, and also issued several double agents. In 1991, the USSR collapsed, and there was no one to cooperate with. But the Russian special services did not forget a useful agent, and cooperation was resumed in 1999. In 2001, Hanssen was nevertheless arrested - he was extradited by defectors from Russia. The investigation was able to prove 13 episodes of espionage, which led to life imprisonment for a spy without the right to pardon. Hanssen handed over over 6,000 classified documents. And in this case, the spies were driven by greed. But he did not waste money, and even demanded to give out part of the payment in diamonds. Hanssen left the packages in secluded places and collected money there. No one knew the special agent by sight, but he himself sent caustic and ironic letters to the KGB, criticizing him for his slowness and unprofessionalism. Even the spy's wife knew nothing about his second life. During the deal, Hanssen told all the authorities, and they left his wife all the property and her husband's pension from the FBI.
Rudolph Abel (1903-1971). In 1901, William Fisher was born into a family of revolutionaries exiled from Russia in Newcastle. The Russified German began his studies at the University of London. But in 1920, the Fishers moved to live in Russia, without giving up their English citizenship. William entered the Institute of Oriental Studies in 1924 and began to study India. But then he was drafted into the army, where he became a brilliant radio operator. These talents were noted by intelligence, where the young man ended up in 1927. In 1931, Fischer, together with his wife and daughter, went on a special mission to England. The scout was responsible for setting up an entire network of secret radio outlets. From 1935 to 1936, the spy worked in Belgium and France. In 1936, Fischer returned to the USSR, where, due to the flight of a major resident, he remained unnecessary. During World War II, Fischer was involved in radio equipment, having received several awards. The failure of the USSR agents in America in 1945-1946 led to the fact that Fischer was again in demand.So the artist Emil Goldfus sailed to America from Germany. Abel needed to renew his agent connections in the USSR and obtain information on atomic research. The active work of the scout quickly bore fruit and in 1949 he was awarded the Order of the Red Banner. In 1957, a defector radio operator Heikhanen betrayed a Soviet spy. Abel categorically refused to cooperate with the authorities and denied his affiliation with intelligence. The court sentenced him to 32 years in prison, but served only 5 of them. Abel continued to pursue his hobby in prison - drawing. In 1962, the famous spy was traded in Germany for the downed American pilot Francis Powers. Fischer returned to work in intelligence, training young employees. On the basis of his biography, the book "Shield and Sword" was written, the tape "Dead Season" was shot.
Konon the Young (1922-1970). Konon's parents were scientists. When the boy was 7 years old, his father died, and at the age of 10 he moved to live with his aunt in the USA. In 1938, Molodyy returned to the USSR and continued his studies. During the war, Konon served in frontline intelligence, showing bravery and earning an award. At the end of the battles, Molodyy entered the Institute of Foreign Trade, where he studied Chinese. Since 1951, Molody has been serving in foreign intelligence. In 1954, he travels to Canada with forged documents. There he was able to transform into Gordon Lonsdale. Young traveled to the United States and Great Britain with the aim of infiltrating military circles and collecting classified information. The outgoing character allowed the scout to become a successful businessman. Lonsdale even managed to become a millionaire. The Queen even awarded the businessman the title of knight for his contribution to the development of entrepreneurial activity in the country. In London, Lonsdale has become a regular hero of social life, he makes useful contacts. Young's most helpful friend turned out to be Harry Houghton, who had access to the classified documents of the naval base. For several years, the Englishman was selling the secrets of his country, which ultimately saved the USSR several billion dollars. Until the last moment, Houghton believed that he was collaborating with the Americans. The failure happened in 1961 due to the betrayal of a Polish intelligence officer who betrayed the traitor. It was through him that Molody was also arrested. The spy spent three years in an English prison, and then was exchanged for an English spy.