The Sword and the Shield: The Mitrokhin Archive and the Secret History of the KGB

The Sword and the Shield: The Mitrokhin Archive and the Secret History of the KGB

by Christopher Andrew, Vasill Mitrohhin


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The Sword and the Shield is based on one of the most extraordinary intelligence coups of recent times: a secret archive of top-level KGB documents smuggled out of the Soviet Union which the FBI has described, after close examination, as the "most complete and extensive intelligence ever received from any source." Its presence in the West represents a catastrophic hemorrhage of the KGB's secrets and reveals for the first time the full extent of its worldwide network.Vasili Mitrokhin, a secret dissident who worked in the KGB archive, smuggled out copies of its most highly classified files every day for twelve years. In 1992, a U.S. ally succeeded in exfiltrating the KGB officer and his entire archive out of Moscow. The archive covers the entire period from the Bolshevik Revolution to the 1980s and includes revelations concerning almost every country in the world. But the KGB's main target, of course, was the United States.Though there is top-secret material on almost every country in the world, the United States is at the top of the list. As well as containing many fascinating revelations, this is a major contribution to the secret history of the twentieth century.Among the topics and revelations explored are: The KGB's covert operations in the United States and throughout the West, some of which remain dangerous today. KGB files on Oswald and the JFK assassination that Boris Yeltsin almost certainly has no intention of showing President Clinton. The KGB's attempts to discredit civil rights leader in the 1960s, including its infiltration of the inner circle of a key leader. The KGB's use of radio intercept posts in New York and Washington, D.C., in the 1970s to intercept high-level U.S. government communications. The KGB's attempts to steal technological secrets from major U.S. aerospace and technology corporations. KGB covert operations against former President Ronald Reagan, which began five years before he became president. KGB spies who successfully posed as U.S. citizens under a series of ingenious disguises, including several who attained access to the upper echelons of New York society.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780465003129
Publisher: Basic Books
Publication date: 08/28/2000
Pages: 736
Sales rank: 180,654
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.20(h) x 2.40(d)
Lexile: 1700L (what's this?)

About the Author

Christopher Andrew is Professor of Modern and Contemporary History at Cambridge University. In addition to The Sword and the Shield, his previous books include Her Majesty's Secret Service, KGB, and For the President's Eyes Only. He lives in Cambridge, England.

Table of Contents

Abbreviations and Acronymsxi
The Evolution of the KGB, 1917-1991xv
The Transliteration of Russian Namesxvii
1The Mitrokhin Archive1
2From Lenin's Cheka to Stalin's OGPU23
3The Great Illegals42
4The Magnificent Five56
7The Grand Alliance104
9From War to Cold War137
10The Main Adversary
Part 1North American Illegals in the 1950's162
11The Main Adversary
Part 2Walk-ins and Legal Residencies in the Early Cold War176
12The Main Adversary
Part 3Illegals after "Abel"190
13The Main Adversary
Part 4Walk-ins and Legal Residencies in the Later Cold War203
14Political Warfare: Active Measures and the Main Adversary224
15Progress Operations
Part 1Crushing the Prague Spring247
16Progress Operations
Part 2Spying on the Soviet Bloc262
17The KGB and Western Communist Parties276
19Ideological Subversion
Part 1The War Against the Dissidents307
20Ideological Subversion
Part 2The Victory of the Dissidents322
21Sigint in the Cold War337
22Special Tasks
Part 1From Marshal Tito to Rudolf Nureyev356
23Special Tasks
Part 2The Andropov Era and Beyond374
24Cold War Operations Against Britain
Part 1After the "Magnificent Five"397
25Cold War Operations Against Britain
Part 2After Operation FOOT417
26The Federal Republic of Germany437
27France and Italy during the Cold War: Agent Penetration and Active Measures460
28The Penetration and Persecution of the Soviet Churches486
29The Polish Pope and the Rise of Solidarity508
30The Polish Crisis and the Crumbling of the Soviet Bloc517
31Conclusion: From the One-Party State to the Yeltsin Presidency544
AKGB Chairmen, 1917-26566
BHeads of Foreign Intelligence, 1920-99567
CThe Organization of the KGB568
DThe Organization of the KGB First Chief Directorate569
EThe Organization of a KGB Residency570

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Sword and the Shield: The Mitrokhin Archive and the Secret History of the KGB 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Anyone who is seriously interested in how to conduct government is the most responsible way should read this book. In addition, those who love spy stories, histories, and novels will be rewarded with many new details and perspectives on Soviet and Russian foreign intelligence activities since the Russian Revolution at the beginning of the 20th century. This book surprised me in several ways. First, I did not expect to learn that the KGB did not have a lot of important successes that were not already known publicly. Second, the KGB's effectiveness was more related to Western mistakes than to KGB brilliance. Third, the Soviet perceptions of the United States and Britain seem to have come from Fantasyland. The Soviet state made very poor use of terrific foreign intelligence because its leaders were such poor thinkers and the system did not encourage free discussion. Fourth, helping the dissidents inside the Soviet Union could have helped undo Communism much sooner. What makes this book unique is the combination of having had access to almost all of the foreign intelligence archives of the KGB for 12 years and having those archives interpreted by someone in the KGB who was interested in the need to reform Soviet socialism. By having Christpher Andrew join Vasili Mitrokhin in authoring this book, you do get a Western overlay but the fundamental Russian perspective is still there. I found the 'big picture' aspects of the book far more rewarding than the specific examples. The rise of fascism clearly was Moscow's greatest resource in getting information from the West. The most effective spies (like Kim Philby and the other Magnficent Five in Britain) were as much motivated by anti-fascism as they were by helping the U.S.S.R. Although some are always willing to sell out for money or sex, idealism is the most dangerous motivation for traitors. Interestingly, leaks from the United States about the atomic and hydrogen bombs related again to idealism -- concern about avoiding a world in which those bombs might be used. How might future offensive and defensive technology breakthroughs create similar actions? It's a chilling thought. At the same time, the failure of the Soviet system eventually limited its ability to gain new traitors. The human rights abuses of the Soviets made Communism seem as dangerous to many idealists as fascism had earlier. Stalin doomed the Soviet system as much as its structural flaws did. On the other hand, Lenin was just as committed to controlling through secret police and intelligence gathering as Stalin was. Clearly, the Communist hand at the tiller in Moscow would have slipped much sooner if severe repression and fear had not been used. I also wondered how many of the problems that Western democracies had with the KGB could have been eliminated by having focused on proper security earlier. The shocking lapses of the British foreign service prior to World War II and in the Roosevelt administration clearly allowed a disproportionate share of the Soviet gains through foreign intelligence. It would also be very interesting to read about how Western democracies could have countered these foreign intelligence operation
Guest More than 1 year ago
I really looked forward to getting my hands on this book, and am glad I did as it was educational. However, the book was billed as much more than it turned out to be. Not everything was that surprising or new, and the structure of the book left much to be desired. I guess I expected to read something very new and shocking, but in many parts I was just bored. It gets three stars because the original material that was there, not the presentation. The rest seemed a summary
Anonymous 8 months ago
Excellent book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
The book is very intelligent and gives you knowledge of the KGB you wouldn't find anywhere else
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The incredible penetration of the Soviet spies in the US was mainly due to two factors: 1) the naivete of those in our government about the evil nature of communism, and 2) the penetration of communism in our government, our universities, and yes our media. Ailments thst still are present today. Yes, the former URSS was disbanded in the 90s but it a very grave mistake that communism is not a present danger, if you look closely you will see it present in the media, the professors in our universities, and certainly in a great number of the Democrats.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Learning about some little tricks about an anacronic secret service in the Cold War 20 or 30 years ago doesn't help much to understand the contemporary world and the future. Forget about KGB Russia and the World should look forward ... not into the ugly