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American espionage in the Soviet Union and Russian Federation

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The United States has conducted espionage against the Soviet Union and its successor state, the Russian Federation.

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  • ✪ 10 Darkest Secrets of the Soviet Union
  • ✪ 5 Deep Cover Russian Spies Caught in America
  • ✪ My Life as a KGB Spy in America: The Truth Behind Soviet Spies in Washington, DC (1995)


10 DARKEST SOVIET UNION SECRETS 10) World War Three Plans At the height of the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962, the Soviet Union hatched a secret plan to launch 131 nuclear missiles to destroy political and communication centers across Europe. The plan outlined that after the nuclear fallout, Soviet troops were expected to invade Nuremburg, Stuttgart, Munich, and Lyon, before dying from the nuclear radiation. The plan was signed by the Czech defense minister and remained an option until 1990, when Czech president Václav Havel [Vart-slarv Ha-vel (lean on the vell)] scrapped it. However, the colossal plan wasn’t revealed until 2007, when historian Petr Lunak [Peter Loo-nak] stumbled on the 17-page plan while sifting through declassified communist-era documents. Source: Telegraph 9) Secret Cities During The Cold War, the USSR closed over 100 cities across the state and wiped them off the map. The cities were home to the state’s most advanced military and nuclear developments, so were kept secret to hide their location from the enemy. The 1.2 million citizens of these cities were forbidden to leave and barred from the outside world by barbed wire and heavily armed guards. At the collapse of the Soviet State, most of these cities were opened, freeing their citizens into the outside world. However, to this day, over 40 cities still remain closed. Source: The Telegraph 8) Small Pox Accident In 1971 a fatal accident occurred at the Soviet Union’s top-secret bio-weapons lab, and it was hidden for over thirty years. While developing a weapon designed to cause an outbreak of smallpox in open air, the deadly virus was accidentally released, killing one woman and two children. The Soviet Union hid the accident to protect information about their bio-weapons from their neighboring enemy countries. It wasn’t until 2002, when the Monterey Institute of International Studies researched into Soviet documents, that the accident was made known. However, to this day, Moscow denies the event. Source: New York Times 7) Balaklava Submarine Base In 1957 the Soviet Union built a secret submarine base in the city of Balaklava. It had underwater access, so submarines could come and go freely without leaving a trace. The base was kept secret to prevent military knowledge leaking to enemies in Europe. This included one of its programs that trained dolphins to attach explosives and tracking devices to enemy ships and submarines. During the collapse of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s, all submarines, torpedoes, and warheads were from the base, revealing the Soviet’s underground secret. Source: Business Insider 6) Cosmonaut death In 1961, Cosmonaut Valentin Bondarenko [Valenteen] was killed in a failed training exercise, after being trapped in a low-pressure altitude chamber that caught fire. It left him with fatal third-degree burns all over his body. The Soviet Union founded a policy, which stated that space programs would only be made public if successful, and so Bondarenko’s death was kept a secret. The Soviet government airbrushed Bondarenko’s image out of public photographs of the cosmonauts to conceal his death. It wasn’t until journalist Yaroslav Golovanov published his research on Russia’s secret space program in 1986 that Bondarenko’s death came to light. Source: Discovery News 5) Human Experiments During the Cold War, Soviet Secret Services established laboratories for human experimentation on Gulag prisoners. The aim was to find a tasteless, odorless, deadly poison that couldn’t be detected in a post mortem. Research was conducted by disguising potential poisons in the medication or food and drink of the prisoners. According to historian Dr. Vadim J. Birstein, [Bur-stine], a poison named C-2 was successfully created, killing any victim in fifteen minutes. The laboratories were kept a secret to hide plans to poison prominent figures of enemy countries. It wasn’t until the dissolution of the Soviet Union that the disturbing experiments were revealed. Source: Biohazard: The Chilling True Story of the Largest Covert Biological Weapons, Ken Alibek, Stephen Handelman 4) Kyshtym Nuclear Disaster [Cush-tim (as in cushion)] One of the worst nuclear disasters ever recorded was hidden by the Soviet Union for almost two decades. On 29th September 1957, the cooling systems of a secret nuclear plant in Russia failed, resulting in a chemical explosion. 10,000 people were exposed to toxic radiation, causing approximately 6,000 deaths from radiation-related diseases. To avoid public backlash against building nuclear weapons, the Soviet regime kept the accident a secret by telling evacuated locals that the contaminated area was to become a nature preserve. It wasn’t until 1976, when Soviet researcher Zhores Medvedev [jh-or-ez med-vay-dev] published a book about his findings, that the disaster was brought to light. Source: BBC 3) Nedelin Disaster [Ned-ay-lin (lean on the ay)] On October 24th 1960, the launch of a top-secret Soviet rocket missile ended in disaster, after a leak of nitric acid caused a huge explosion. Over 100 people were killed, some instantly. Others died while attempting to flee, after they got stuck in tarmac that had been melted in the explosion. The Soviet regime hid the disaster from the public to prevent exposing the development of their weapons to the enemy. As a result, news publications stated that victims had died in a plane crash. It wasn’t until thirty years later, in a report published by Russian magazine Ogoniok [og-on-yok], that the truth was publicly revealed. Source: NASA 2) The Katyn Massacre The 1940 Katyn massacre was one of the Soviet Union’s darkest secrets. Stalin ordered the Soviet secret police to execute over 22,000 Polish prisoners of war, whom he believed were a threat to the communist movement. Handcuffed prisoners were taken into soundproof cells and shot in the back of their heads. The bodies were then piled into a mass grave. The Soviets denied responsibility for the massacre until 1990, when Soviet Union President Gorbachev publicly acknowledged the crimes. Source: BBC 1) The Holodomor Famine In 1932 a secret famine killed 8 million Ukrainians. New Soviet policy at the time hindered crop growth and transportation, leaving peasants starving. These were the very people who Stalin thought were a threat to the Soviet regime. Knowing they were at risk of damaging their international reputation, the Soviet Union kept the famine a closely guarded secret for half a century. They hired journalists to write that reports of a famine were merely anti-Soviet propaganda, and they implemented laws that made speaking up about the famine punishable by 5 years in prison. The famine was not made public knowledge until an investigation conducted by the World Congress of Free Ukrainians in the post-Soviet era. Source: The Guardian


Soviet Union

Military attaches of foreign embassies visiting the exhibition of remains of U.S. U-2 spy-in-the-sky aircraft destroyed on may 1, 1960 near Sverdlovsk (currently Yekaterinburg).
Military attaches of foreign embassies visiting the exhibition of remains of U.S. U-2 spy-in-the-sky aircraft destroyed on may 1, 1960 near Sverdlovsk (currently Yekaterinburg).

Throughout the Cold War, acts of espionage, or spying, became prevalent as tension between the United States and Soviet Union increased.[1]

Russian Federation


According to U.S. government officials, as of 2016 the United States Intelligence Community had earmarked up to 10-percent of its budgets "to Russia-related espionage".[2]


  • In 2000 a former U.S. naval intelligence officer was convicted of espionage by a Russian court and sentenced to 20 years in prison, however, was later pardoned by Russian president Vladimir Putin. At the time of his arrest, the man had been seeking to purchase technical details about a Russian rocket-propelled torpedo; he later claimed he had only been seeking unclassified information regarding the torpedo for his technical consulting business.[3]
  • In 2013 Ryan Fogle, the third secretary at the U.S. embassy in Moscow, was deported from Russia after Russian counterintelligence officers caught him carrying two wigs, three pairs of sunglasses, a Moscow street atlas, $130,000 in cash, and "a letter offering up to $1-million a year for long-term cooperation".[4][5][6]
  • In 2017 a cybersecurity specialist working in the Federal Security Service was arrested by Russian authorities on suspicion of passing information to U.S. intelligence.[7]

See also


  1. ^ Jussi M. Hanhimäki; Odd Arne Westad (2004). The Cold War: A History in Documents and Eyewitness Accounts. Oxford University Press. pp. 445–. ISBN 978-0-19-927280-8.
  2. ^ Miller, Greg (14 September 2016). "As Russia reasserts itself, U.S. intelligence agencies focus anew on the Kremlin". The Washington Post. Retrieved 12 May 2017.
  3. ^ Tavernise, Sabrina (December 15, 2000). "American Jailed as Spy in Moscow Is Freed on Putin's Orders; U.S. Welcomes Gesture". The New York Times. Retrieved May 12, 2017.
  4. ^ Haynes, Gavin (20 May 2013). "Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Dickhead". Vice Magazine. Retrieved 12 May 2017.
  5. ^ Goldman, Russell (5 Jan 2017). "Spies vs. spies: How the Cold War lives on between Russia and the United States". Globe & Mail. Retrieved 12 May 2017.
  6. ^ "Ryan Fogle: Russia to expel diplomat arrested trying to recruit for CIA". The Guardian. 15 May 2013. Retrieved 12 May 2017.
  7. ^ "Police Arrest Alleged U.S. Spy Working in Heart of Russian Cybersecurity". Moscow Times. January 26, 2017. Retrieved May 12, 2017.
This page was last edited on 5 January 2019, at 17:15
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