around the world

Greatest Double Agents

People who received a salary at the box office of two feuding special services – who are they?

The dual agent’s profession is dangerous and difficult doubly, which means that it is paid quite high. Similar vacancies on the site “Headhunter” do not lie. However, as independent sources say, motive for agents is not always money (ha, so we believed!). These people take risks from the love of their country. Or to a stranger – depending on the situation.

The culture of double agents originated, like tea, chess and Abidas sneakers, in ancient China, but reached its heyday during the Second World War and then the Cold War. Now double agents are using the CIA to fight terrorism (by issuing passports to them in the name of Foma Ashf).

1. Dusan Popov

Dushan Popov, nicknamed “Tricycle” is considered the prototype of 007 agent James Bond. A tall, charismatic and self-assured Yugoslav lawyer successfully worked for MI6 during the Second World War. Dusan spoke German fluently and cooperated with German special services, while hating Hitler.

British intelligence did not immediately believe Dushan, and in order to win their favor, he issued a double agent – the German officer Johannes Jebsen. With MI-6, Dusan communicated with the help of invisible ink and personally designed encodings.

The confidence of the German side was so high that, even when they disclosed his informant Yepsen, did not cease cooperation. In 1941, Dusan went to the United States on the instructions of Germany to get information about missile systems. There he immediately contacted the CIA director Edgar Hoover and became a double agent working for the United States.

Career Popov did not ask, because the Americans did not like the life of the playboy that he led. Dusan was pointed to the door, and his information about the impending raid on Pearl Harbor is completely ignored. Popov died in the United States at the age of 69, leaving behind three children and a 30-year-old wife – a beautiful Swede, who could star in any James Bond film.

2. Oleg Penkovsky

Oleg Penkovsky, nicknamed “Hero”, Colonel General of the GRU of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of the USSR, was one of the most important spies of the West during the Cold War. In fact, he prevented the outbreak of a nuclear war, transferring to the MI6 5,500 documents on the nuclear forces of the USSR, including Cuba, and Khrushchev’s plans. The US received full information about what type of missiles and how many nuclear warheads the USSR has, which in many respects influenced President Kennedy’s policy.

Suspicion Penkovsky was in 1961, arrested in October 1962 and, according to official data, was shot in 1963. However, according to other sources, he was burned alive in a crematorium oven, and the execution record was shown to scouts for intimidation (and raising morale).

There is, however, a version that Penkovsky acted in the interests of his homeland, transferring information beneficial to the government of the USSR. This opinion was held by the scientist Peter Wright, who worked for MI-5. In this case, Oleg’s story ends with a happy end: he was not shot or burned, but moved under a false name to the West.

3. Humam Al-Balawi

Humam Al-Balawi fully justified his pseudonym Zigzag, since he was not even a double but a triple agent. The CIA came to him when he studied medicine in Istanbul. Khalil did not hide his adherence to extremist views, and this made him an ideal candidate for the role of a double agent.

Al-Balawi was sent to Afghanistan, where he successfully collaborated with Al-Qaeda, transferring information to the CIA. Having fully secured the confidence of the American side and promised to provide information about Al-Qaida’s second-biggest leader Aimane Zawahiri, Al-Balawi entered the Chapman base, more accurately, went freely to a CIA meeting where he blew himself up, killing seven CIA officers and two military officers .

4. Arthur Owens

The first double agent during the Second World War, who replaced several callsigns. The Germans called him “Johnny” and “Beerman” (Beerman) – due to the fact that in German he could only say “Ein Bier”. And the British – “Snow”. Arthur, a Welshman by origin, adhered to anti-British views and began cooperation with Germany even before the war.

For a moderate fee, he supplied them with information about British armament, plans for airfields and the location of military bases and warehouses. By the beginning of the war, he managed to put together a good state, taking the amount of data transferred. Arthur gathered information, hiding behind his work as a seller of electrical equipment and freely traveling around the country.

After the outbreak of the war, Arthur contacted MI6 and willingly (for an appropriate reward) went on contact with them. With his help, British intelligence managed to unleash a network of more than 120 German spies and for several years successfully sell false information to Germany. Since Artur moved mainly mercantile considerations, he was very cautious. After the end of the war, he peacefully retired with the appropriate reward for non-disclosure of information and lived the rest of his life in clover.

5. Aldrich Ames

Aldrich Ames, the head of the CIA’s counterintelligence unit and the head of the Soviet department of the CIA’s external counterintelligence department, successfully worked for nine years with the intelligence of the USSR and was one of the most prominent spies. He cost the government of the USSR a pretty penny, his fees were estimated at millions of dollars and were the largest in the history of Soviet intelligence.

To betray the ideals of their homeland Ames pushed banal greed. At the time of the beginning of cooperation with the KGB in 1984, he was getting divorced from his wife, and huge debts of his mistress hung on him. Thanks to the information provided to them, 12 to 25 agents in the highest echelons of power in the USSR were disclosed, according to various sources.

Confirming the thesis about the lack of spirituality of Americans, among other Ames wrote a denunciation and to his friend, the agent of state security Sergei Fedorenko. Ten people were subsequently sentenced to death, and Ames himself became the owner of a fortune of $ 4 million.

However, he did not have time to use the money he earned, although he bought a house in the Washington area for $ 540,000 in cash, bought a farm and two apartments for his wife, got a Jaguar and luxury goods for $ 455,000, and bought Exchange shares worth a total of $ 165,000. In 1994, Ames was sentenced to life imprisonment with confiscation of property and served time in prison in Pennsylvania. The episode with Ames led to a cooling of relations between Russia and the US, despite the fact that Boris Yeltsin stated that he knew nothing about his activities.

6. Kim Philby

Naturally, he could not get on our list. Kim Philby, for decades a former Soviet spy in MI6, served as head of counterintelligence and even awarded the Order of the British Crown. Philby was in the famous (we suggest you google) “Cambridge Five”, consisting of five spies, graduates of Cambridge, working in the British secret services.

By the way, for today only four participants are known, the name of the fifth has not yet been revealed. Philby was their leader. Only during the war he transferred to Moscow 914 documents with valuable information.

In fact, for the USSR, Kim Philby was the same as Owen Ames in the US, but unlike the latter, Kim worked for the idea, since he adhered to communist views from his youth. Because of his secret activities, his first wife, an activist of the Austrian Communist Party, Litzy Friedman, left him, believing that he betrayed the ideals of Marx and Lenin and was sold to the capitalists.

However, later Philby married again – on the employee of the Soviet Research Institute Rufina Pukhova, with whom he lived in Moscow, where he was secretly taken out by the government of the USSR after the exposure of two agents from the “Cambridge Five.” Philby spent the rest of his life in Moscow, in a luxurious apartment near the metro station “Kievskaya”, and is buried in the Novokuntsevsky cemetery.

7. Juan García Pujol

Juan Garcia Pujol, a brilliant double agent in the service of British and German intelligence, was awarded on both sides: the Order of the British Empire and the Iron Cross. It’s a pity he could not wear them at the same time.

Huang was born in Barcelona, ​​did not achieve much success in school and worked as a salesman in the store when the Civil War broke out in Spain. He tried to establish cooperation with British and American intelligence services, but the information available to the modest seller did not seem interesting to them. Then Pujol offered his services to German intelligence and was ordered to set up an agent network in the UK.

Not knowing English, he traveled to Lisbon instead of London and handed over to his superiors a lot of reports allegedly from England, the data for which was partly taken from open sources (guidebooks, newspapers, advertisements and public transport schedules), and partly invented himself. To protect himself, Pujol created a whole network of fictional informants, on which, in case of failure, he could blame all the blame.

After the German forces spent considerable funds to declassify the invented friends of Pujol, they were interested in British intelligence. A talented hoaxer continued his activities and by the end of the war his network consisted of 27 non-existent characters who regularly supplied him with information.

So, among others, the British censor in the Ministry of Information, an office clerk, an American soldier in the UK, a Dutch stewardess and a Welshman who sympathized with fascism allegedly worked for him. When the next time you hear voices in your head, think: maybe you should also try your hand at reconnaissance?

Ironically, Poojol’s lies were taken at face value. Despite the fact that his reports were either a little late or they contained already known data, the Germans respected the tremendous work done by this selfless Spaniard and his agents in the heart of England.

Pujol managed to misinform the German command and play a decisive role in the operations of Neptune and Fortutude. In the first case, the German troops landed in the wrong place in the direction of Pujol, and in the second, the German leadership was deceived about the time and place of the Allied invasion in 1944 in Normandy.

In 1945 Pujol dramatized his death and moved to Venezuela, where he opened a bookshop and lived for another 40 years.

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