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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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  • July 26, 1985

    Polish Interior Ministry Report on Information Leaked to Radio Free Europe on Catholic Church

    The Interior Ministry directive from which this document is excerpted ordered an investigation into how a confidential regime survey of attitudes toward the Catholic Church could have been leaked to RFE. In a follow-up report almost two years later, the Interior Ministry conceded on June 25, 1987 that many people had access to the report and it was impossible to determine who had provided RFE with the material.

  • 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.

  • September 25, 1986

    Memorandum to Central Committee from Politburo Members Ligachev and Chebrikov on Jamming of Western Radio Stations

    This memorandum from Politburo members Chebrikov and Ligachev describes in general terms the jamming situation in 1986 and the rationale for ending jamming on VOA, BBC, Radio Beijing and Radio Korea, while continuing jamming of Radio Liberty, Radio Free Europe, Deutsche Welle and Kol Israel.

  • May 04, 1988

    Information Bulletin for Polish Party Leadership on Western Views of Poland

    This document is an example of analyses prepared for the top Party leadership on the content of Western broadcasts to Poland. It provides, without editorializing or pejorative clauses, an interpretation of the Western broadcasts.

  • June 06, 1989

    Bulgarian Politburo Discussion on Radio Free Europe Monitoring Reports (excerpt)

    This extract from a Politburo discussion indicates the attention paid to monitoring Western broadcasts for the top Party elite and Party leader Zhivkov’s impatience with the regime monitors’ focus on RFE broadcasts.

  • June 06, 1989

    Meeting of the Politburo of the Central Committee of the Bulgarian Communist Party

    Discussion of broadcasts of "Radio Free Europe" and other Western media on Bulgaria's policies towards the country's Turkish minority.

  • 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

    KGB Practices. Folder 70. The Chekist Anthology.

    This entry contains brief descriptions of a variety of KGB operations carried out between the early 1960’s and late 1970’s, and provides a sampling of the kinds of operations that were common in that era. Operation “Grom” [“Thunder”] involved fabricating a US State Department memo on Soviet citizens’ inclination towards treason. The memo discussed ways in which the US could exploit this tendency to its advantage. It was published on the front page of the British newspaper “Daily Express.” A pamphlet created by the KGB and attributed to the terrorist organization ‘BAS’ (South Tyrolean Liberation Committee) was introduced as evidence in the trial of BAS leader Norbert Burger in Austria. In July 1976 the KGB residency in Singapore spied on Chess Grandmaster Boris Spassky during his visit to Singapore, and noted in its report that he spent much of his free time on the tennis court. The KGB created and disseminated a letter, ostensibly from nationalist Ukrainian emigrants, protesting the French government’s cooperation with Zionists, and threatening reprisals against French Zionists. The KGB residency in Austria organized operation “Bonga” [“Bigwig”] in which forged letters from Chairman Mao were produced. These letters indicated that Mao himself had essentially organized the opposition to Hua Guofeng’s reforms, and that Hua might lead China to a revisionist course. In March 1977, the newspaper of the Austrian Communist Party printed a translation of a secret Chilean document in which the Chilean secret police asked Gen. Augusto Pinochet for additional funds to carry out undercover operations abroad. Pinochet’s reply contained a harsh rebuke for the request, and a strong admonishment against engaging in clandestine operations abroad. Mitrokhin did not mention where the document came from, nor did he state whether it was authentic or a forgery.

  • June, 2007

    Coordination of Soviet and Czechoslovak Intelligence Operations. Folder 80. The Chekist Anthology.

    This folder consists of a detailed operational plan for cooperation between the Czechoslovakian Ministry of Internal Affairs and the KGB for the years 1975-1978. Specific objectives include penetrating the military, political, and economic establishments of the United States, Britain, West Germany, France, and NATO, impeding the activities of the Czech Congress of National Development (KNR), collecting information on “Zionist intrigues,” gathering scientific/technical information on Western achievements in the fields of biological, chemical, and thermonuclear weapons, and using active measures to curtail the activities of Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty in West Germany.