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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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  • October 25, 1985

    Cooperative plan between the Interior Ministry of the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic and the Soviet KGB for the summer of 1986-1990

    This agreement acknowledges the alleged use of post as a method used by subversives to act against the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic and the Soviet Union. Both parties agree to exchange information after evaluating the effectiveness of their work in this area and plan to prolong the existing cooperative agreement.

  • December 30, 1985

    Bulgarian Interior Minister Visits Moscow to Coordinate Activities against Foreign Propaganda Operations

    This note regarding the results of the visit of a group of Interior Ministry officials to the KGB in Moscow contains a proposal to develop a coordinated plan to discredit RFE and RL.

  • May 06, 1986

    Ministry of State Security (Stasi), 'Report on Development and Achieved State of Work Regarding Early Recognition of Adversarial Attack and Surprise Intentions (Complex RYAN)'

    This report by Ministry of State Security describes developments and achievements toward early recognition of a surprise nuclear missile attack on the USSR (Complex RYAN).

  • August 27, 1986

    Comprehensive Plan of cooperation of USSR KGB 1st Main Directorate Departments with the 1st Directorate of the CSSR FMVD concerning the organization of agent operational work in the countries of the Near East between 1986 and 1990

    Cooperative agreement with a focus on shared intelligence work in the "Near East against the US, Britain, the FRG, France, and the other NATO countries, and also against Israel, the Arab countries, and Arab political forces and organizations."

  • November 10, 1986

    Letter, East German Minister of State Security Mielke to KGB Chairman Viktor Chebrikov

    This letter, from East German Minister of State Security Mielke to KGB Chairman Chebrikov, requests a consultation on the development and continuation of Complex RYAN, especially on furthering collaboration between the MfS and KGB.

  • January 20, 1987

    Ministry of State Security (Stasi), Plan for Consultations with the Delegation of the KGB

    This document is a plan for the consultations to take place in Berlin between the Stasi and the KBG. It includes objectives and proposed theses on the subject of early recognition of a sudden nuclear missile attack by the adversary.

  • September 26, 1987

    Stasi Note on Meeting Between Minister Mielke and Head of the KGB 5th Directorate Abramov

    Meeting between the head of the KGB’s Fifth Chief Directorate, Major General Abramov, and Minister for State Security Mielke, especially on changes in Soviet policy following Mikhail Gorbachev’s accession to power. They discuss the increase in dissident activity, public demonstrations, and subversive organizations.

  • June 20, 1988

    Anatoly Chernyaev, Notes from a Meeting of the Politburo

    Anatoly Chernyaev’s notes from the Politburo session on June 20, 1988, during which military spending, party membership, the progress of perestroika, and CPSU organizational leadership were discussed.

  • July 24, 1989

    Decision of the Moldavian KGB Collegium, On the Implementation Status by KGB MSSR Section 5 'Fulfillment of the Directives of the XXVIIth CPSU Congress on the Intensification of Ideological-Educational Work'

    Report by the Moldavian KGB on the decisions it had implemented of the USSR KGB Collegium from the previous year. Includes work to counter Romanian nationalist propaganda. Romania is referred to by the code name "Objective 24." General-Lieutenant G.M. Volkov, the Chairman of the Moldavian SSR KGB, maintained that an all-out offensive was required, including the use of “persons of trust from among the ranks of people of science, culture and art,” in order to neutralize “the subversive activity of the adversary” by identifying and isolating the “emissaries of the adversary” and imposing “permanent and reliable operational control” over them.

  • August 30, 1989

    Agreement Concerning Cooperation between the CSSR Federal Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Committee for State Security of the USSR

    Cooperative and intelligence sharing agreement.

  • April, 2004

    STASI German/Russian Lexicon of Intelligence Terms Introduction

    This compact German-Russian dictionary came to light in 1967. The dictionary is anonymous: it has no indication of title, authorship, publisher, place and date of publication - there are no indications at all. On reading through it, it is clear that it contains Cheka terminology, and was compiled after 1954. When translated into Russian, these terms were to assist operational officers working in the USSR KGB Establishment attached to the GDR MfS [Ministerium für Staatssicherheit] - helping them to read secret German-language materials supplied in great quantities by the GDR MfS [2], sent on to the Centre with a cover note, and to carry on conversations on Chekist themes with their German colleagues.

  • June, 2007

    The Komsomol meeting. Folder 47. The Chekist Anthology.

    In this note Mitrokhin describes events which took place at Moscow State University (MGU) in November 1956. Three students from the faculty of geography, Varuschenko, Nedobezhkin and Nosov, openly criticized actions of the Central Committee of the All-Union Leninist Young Communist League (Komsomol). According to Mitrokhin, they claimed that the committee did not represent the youth’s interests, that the leaders of Komsomol were corrupted by the Communist Party, and that there was an absence of activities. The students stated that the Central Committee required fundamental reform in order to keep students united and active in political life. According to Mitrokhin, most students from all MGU faculties agreed with the statements made by the activists from the faculty of geography. They demanded to elect Varuschenko to the executive board of the Central Committee and also proposed to organize an independent organization to discuss issues that concerned most youths. That month Varuschenko was elected to the Central Committee and the Independent Club of Geographers was founded. Mitrokhin states that the KGB was extremely concerned about these circumstances. The administration feared that they had lost control over the youth. The KGB stated that the reason for this opposition was foreign propaganda brought to the Soviet Union by foreign students. As a result, the KGB quickly disbanded the new club and the new executive board of the Central Committee. Varuschenko was expelled from the university.

  • June, 2007

    On Human Rights. Folder 51. The Chekist Anthology.

    Outlines the KGB’s response to the USSR’s signing of the Helsinki Accords in 1975. The accords obligated signatories to respect their citizens’ human rights. This gave Soviet dissidents and westerners leverage in demanding that the USSR end persecution on the basis of religious or political beliefs. Some of the KGB’s active measures included the establishment of a charitable fund dedicated to helping victims of imperialism and capitalism, and the fabrication of a letter from a Ukrainian group to FRG President Walter Scheel describing human rights violations in West Germany. The document also mentions that the Soviet Ministry of Defense obtained an outline of the various European powers’ positions on human rights issues as presented at the March 1977 meeting of the European Economic Community in London from the Italian Foreign Ministry. The KGB also initiated Operation “Raskol” [“Schism”], which ran between 1977 and 1980. This operation included active measures to discredit Soviet dissidents Andrei Sakharov, Yelena Bonner, and Alexander Solzhenitsyn, measures designed to drive a wedge between the US and its democratic allies, and measures intended to convince the US government that continued support for the dissident movement did nothing to harm the position of the USSR.

  • June, 2007

    Once More about Radio Liberty. Folder 66. The Chekist Anthology.

    Contains information on KGB active measures to undermine the activities and credibility of Radio Liberty, Radio Free Europe, and Voice of America during the mid 1970’s and early 1980’s. In one operation, personally authorized by KGB Chairman Yuri Andropov, the Spanish journal “Arriba” and 42 other Spanish journals published articles stating that Radio Liberty broadcasts into the USSR violated the Helsinki Accords because they impinged upon Soviet sovereignty, and were contrary to Spanish national interests. Following this activity, the Spanish leadership decided not to extend its agreement with the US which allowed Radio Liberty to broadcast from Spain. During a 1976 operation, an East German agent who worked as an international lawyer spread disinformation about Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty’s ‘illegal’ activities in 35 foreign embassies in Vienna. In October 1977, the KGB sent letters to a variety of Western news outlets, including the Washington Post, claiming to be from a group of Radio Free Europe employees. These letters were directed specifically at US Senators Edward Kennedy, Charles Percy, and Frank Church, and Representatives Edward Derwinsky, Clement Zablocky, Herman Badillo, and Berkley Bedell. In 1981, with the help of the journal “Pravda,” the KGB exposed the role of Radio Liberty in the ‘events’ in Poland.

  • June, 2007

    Counter-Intelligence Protection, 1971. Folder 97. The Chekist Anthology.

    Information on KGB counter-intelligence surveillance of Soviet tourists vacationing in other socialist countries who had contact with foreigners. The document states that Western intelligence services organized “friendship meetings” through tourist firms to meet Soviet citizens, gauge their loyalty to the USSR, and obtain political, economic, and military intelligence. KGB counter-intelligence paid particular attention to Soviet citizens who were absent from their groups, took side trips to different cities or regions, made telephone calls to foreigners, or engaged in “ideologically harmful” conversations in the presence of foreigners. Mirokhin regrets that the KGB underestimated the strengths and methodology of Western intelligence services. He concludes that the KGB should have adopted some of the same methods, and targeted Western tourists visiting socialist countries.

  • June, 2007

    Operation "LES" (The Forest). The 1940-50 MGB Operation Against Moldavian "Freedom Party." Folder 8. The Chekist Anthology.

    In the post-WWII period there were approximately 30 active anti-Soviet organizations in Moldova. Operation “LES” aimed at the elimination of the “Freedom Party” that existed from 1949 until 1950. “Freedom Party” was established in May 1949 by brothers Istratiy and Viktor Andreev. It was divided into separate cells of five members. Each member created their own cell, and each cell had its own leader. The organization networked with nationalist groups throughout Moldova and western Ukraine, where it often purchased ammunition and enlisted nationalist-minded partisans. According to its charter, the core function of the “Freedom Party” was to restore people’s freedom and guarantee the return of monarchy. By 1950, the operation “LES” involved more than 20 KGB agents. Agents “Moriak,” (Sailor) “Busuioc,” (Basil) and “Vernyj” (Trustworthy) were among the KGB’s main informants. At the time of their arrest on 5 June 1950, the anti-Soviet formation “Freedom Party” had 33 members.

  • June, 2007

    The Solzhenitsyn Case. Folder 40. The Chekist Anthology

    In this entry Mitrokhin states that in 1974 the KGB prepared a plan to repress Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s anti-soviet activities in the West. The plan emphasized the importance of separating Solzhenitsyn from his supporters as well as using their testimony from interrogations against Solzhenitsyn. KGB chief Yuri Andropov approved this plan on September 19, 1974. Mitrokhin provides two pages of the signed plan in this entry, where Solzhenitsyn’s code-name was “Spider.” In 1975 the KGB prepared a more detailed and specific plan to take Solzhenitsyn’s activities under control. It was also crucially important to control the context of “The Continent” magazine. The plan called for KGB agents in the West to publish provocative materials about Solzhenitsyn that would give the impression that he was an undercover agent for the KGB. The plan was prepared by the First, the Second, and the Fifth Chief Directorates of the KGB. The plan is provided by Mitrokhin in the entry. In 1978, when Solzhenitsyn delivered his speech at Harvard University, the KGB was very pleased with its turnout and used it against him in his further anti-socialist activities. Representatives of the KGB in the Soviet Union and the Ministry for State Security of East Germany prepared operation “Vampire – 1.” This operation was focused on publishing many materials about “Spider” that would put him in a compromising position in the West. In 1978 “Neue Politik,” a western German magazine, published an article “Confessions of an agent “Vetrov,” also known as Solzhenitsyn” stating that Solzhenitsyn had been an active KGB undercover agent. This article was published in major magazines and newspapers in many Western countries. Mitrokhin states that this provocative publication almost ended Solzhenitsyn’s career.

  • June, 2007

    The Pathfinders (the Sinyavsky-Daniel show trial. Folder 41. The Chekist Anthology

    In this case Mitrokhin provides a history of the Sinyavsky-Daniel show trial. Between 1959 and 1962 two unknown Russian authors (pseudonyms Tertz and Arzhak) published two anti-soviet books, “This is Moscow Speaking” and “The Trial Begins,” in Western countries. The KGB was not familiar with the authors and did not know where they lived. According to Mitrokhin, KGB agent “Efimov” discovered that a litterateur from Moscow, Yuliy Daniel, had some anti-soviet materials. In the beginning of 1964 the analysis of all available information proved that Daniel was the author of “This is Moscow Speaking” and that his pseudonym was Arzhak. It was soon discovered that Tertz, whose real name was Sinyavsky, was Arzhak’s close friend. The KGB began a new operation “The Imitators,” which helped to learn about their connections abroad, new works in progress, places where authors kept their original writings as well as the means they used to send their literature to the West. Mitrokhin states that KGB agents had difficulties working because Sinyavsky once was an agent for the KGB, so he was familiar with all of the techniques. In September 1965, after the KGB collected all of the necessary information, a criminal case was opened. Sinyavsky and Daniel were arrested. Mitrokhin provides details of the investigation process. In February 1966 the Supreme Court of the Soviet Union sentenced “the imitators.” Sinyavsky was sentenced to seven years in jail and Daniel was sentenced to five. After Sinyavsky served his time, he moved to France with his wife where he became well respected among immigrants. According to Mitrokhin, however, later on he lost that respect because he published a provocative book A Walk with Pushkin. Mitrokhin states that the KGB kept monitoring Sinyavsky’s activities throughout his career in France.

  • June, 2007

    Around the Nomination (The Case of Orlov). Folder 42. The Chekist Anthology

    In this folder Mitrokhin expresses the KGB’s concerns regarding the potential for Yuri Orlov’s nomination for a Nobel Prize. Orlov was well known in the Soviet Union for his dissident activities and for organizing the Moscow Helsinki Group to monitor Soviet adherence to the 1975 Helsinki Accords. According to Mitrokhin, he openly supported all anti-soviet groups and organized public protests for the Soviet human rights movement. As the KGB was concerned, they made many efforts to take the movement under control, but these did not lead to success. Mitrokhin provides examples of the KGB’s attempts to stop Orlov’s activism. Mitrokhin states that the West, however, was in extreme support of Orlov’s ideology. In order to help his movement to gain more influence, Western officials nominated Orlov for the Nobel Prize in 1978. The KGB immediately developed a complex plan to assure Nobel officials that Orlov did not deserve the prize and that it would have been unfavorable for the prestige of the Nobel Prize if Orlov was awarded it. Mitrokhin states that KGB chief Yuri Andropov took control over the operation because Orlov winning the prize would have been crucially harmful for the Soviet political system. Mitrokhin provides the detailed plan in this entry. A KGB resident in Oslo sent an urgent telegram to Moscow on October 27, 1978 stating that Anwar El Sadat and Menachem Begin became laureates of the Nobel Peace prize. Mitrokhin provides full telegram text in this entry and also states that the Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs expressed his satisfaction with the fact that Orlov did not win the prize because it would have negatively affected relations between the two countries.

  • June, 2007

    The Tanov Case. Folder 43. The Chekist Anthology.

    In this entry Mitrokhin describes the essential role that the KGB agent Tanov played in repressing the dissident movement in the Soviet Union in the late 1960s. Mitrokhin states that Tanov had important connections and was a trusted person among Soviet dissidents which helped him to receive important information about their activities. Tanov’s primary target was Orlova who was friends with many dissidents in the U.S.S.R. and in the West. She introduced Tanov to many of her acquaintances, which helped him to broaden his connections. Mitrokhin partially focuses on describing how Tanov gained trust among anti-soviet activists. Mitrokhin also states that because of Tanov’s critical role, the KGB was able to establish a detailed list of dissidents, their activities, connections, places where they met as well as personal portraits