Spy Cases

Spy Fever Strikes UK

19 September 1999

Alderson, Andrew,

1. and David Bamber. "CND Chief Was Stasi Secret Agent." Telegraph (London), 19 Sep. 1999. [http://www.telegraph.co.uk]

According to secret Stasi files, Vic Allen, a former Leeds University economics professor, "passed confidential information" about the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament "to East German intelligence officers and manipulated the peace movement into taking a Soviet-friendly line."

2. Martin Bentham, and Rajeev Syal. "Stasi Spy Used Peace Movement to Undermine Nuclear Defences." Telegraph (London), 19 Sep. 1999. [http://www.telegraph.co.uk]

"The Telegraph has learned -- through East German intelligence files -- that Mr [Vic] Allen set out to defeat a faction within the peace movement-- European Nuclear Disarmament headed by the historian E P Thompson-- that wanted to put pressure on the Soviets, as well as on the West, to disarm. He did this by making secret visits to London to brief East German intelligence officers at their embassy."

BBC. "Respected Lecturer's Double Life." 19 Sep. 1999. [http://news1.thls.bbc.co.uk]

Report on the BBC Two series, "The Spying Game," and its naming of Hull University history lecturer Dr. Robin Pearson as a Stasi spy whose codename was Armin.

Cracknell. David. "Secret Spy Committee of Whitehall Mandarins." Telegraph (London), 19 Sep. 1999. [http://www.telegraph.co.uk]

"A secret, high-level committee was formed in 1996 to look at how to 'handle' the disclosures in the Mitrokhin archive.... It is understood to have included senior officials from the Home Office, Cabinet Office, Foreign Office and the security service. But the committee ... never gave any regular reports to ministers, and it was up to the discretion of the officials involved to tell their respective ministers what the conclusions were. The revelation of the committee's existence and its sensitive subject matter suggests that knowledge of the existence of British KGB agents was more widespread in Whitehall than previously thought."

Harrison, David. "Blake Praises 'Saint.'" Telegraph (London), 19 Sep. 1999. [http:// www.telegraph.co.uk]

Convicted spy George Blake, now living in Moscow, told BBC Radio 4's Today program on 18 September 1999 that Melita Norwood was "practically a saint."

Judd, Alan. "Secret Services Wrongly Blamed." Telegraph (London), 19 Sep. 1999. [http://www.telegraph.co.uk]

"The Security Service (MI5) and the Secret Intelligence Service (SIS or MI6) are doubtless resigned to being blamed for whatever they do or do not do. But some of the criticism aimed at them this week rests on misunderstandings."

Millar, Peter. "I Was Streamer, Target of the Friendly Sneaks." Sunday Times (London), 19 Sep. 1999. [http://www.the-times.co.uk]

"Until this weekend I did not know that Dr [Robin] Pearson spied on me. The codename Armin leapt out at me from my Stasi file, a document of 250 pages compiled by the communist secret police during the early 1980s when I was the only British correspondent in East Berlin."

Rose, David. "Romeo Targeted 'Diana.'" Telegraph (London), 19 Sep. 1999. [http:// www.telegraph.co.uk]

"A British woman, code-named Diana, became the victim of an attempted 'Romeo'-style recruitment by East German intelligence. She agreed to carry out missions for the Stasi while living in East Germany, but broke contact after returning to Britain."

Rufford, Nicholas. "MI5 Kept File on Prescott the Striking Seaman." Sunday Times (London), 19 Sep. 1999. [http://www.the-times.co.uk]

"MI5 kept a file on John Prescott, the deputy prime minister, for two decades, fearing that he was linked to dangerous agitators and an idealist who was open to communist subversion."

Rufford, Nicholas, and Barrie Penrose. "KGB Claims Kinnock Aide Was 'Agent Dan.'" Sunday Times (London), 19 Sep. 1999. [http://www.the-times.co.uk]

Richard Clements "was Neil Kinnock's closest ally and a shaper of Labour's strategies -- but to the KGB he was agent Dan.... KGB documents smuggled out of Russia by Vasili Mitrokhin, a KGB archivist, reveal that the Russians believed they had turned one of Britain's most influential political thinkers and writers into an 'agent of influence'.

"Clements ... dismisses as fanciful the notion that the KGB had recruited him or were manipulating him.... [He said,] 'I suspect they exaggerated their reports to Moscow. Perhaps they were boosting their expenses'.... Oleg Gordievsky .. claims Clements was considered a valuable contact by the KGB. Clements, he claimed, had called him at the Soviet embassy in London, soon after his return from Moscow, when Gordievsky had taken over as KGB second-in-command.... Clements said [on 18 September 1999] that the claim was complete nonsense."

Steele, Jonathan. "Romeo Spy Was 'Just Trouble.'" The Observer, 19 Sep. 1999.

KGB Colonel Igor Prelin, the "main Moscow 'handler'" of the so-called "Romeo Spy" has said that John Symonds was "far more trouble than he was worth." Symonds made "only two contacts of any value to the Soviet Union but cost it a lot in hotel bills, fancy clothes and entertainment."

Sunday Times (London). "[Insight:] Six Identified Traitors Escape Prosecution." 19 Sep. 1999. [http://www.the-times.co.uk]

"At least six Britons named as secret agents for East Germany have been identified by MI5 officers hunting a Stasi spy ring. But government law officers have decided not to prosecute." Those so identified include Fiona Houlding, codenamed Diana in the Stasi files, "who fell in love with an East German agent while a student at Leipzig" and is "alleged to have carried out information-gathering for the communist regime." Hull University lecturer Robin Pearson has also been "named as having spied for the Stasi for 12 years between 1977 and 1989.... Another alleged Stasi agent is Vic Allen, a retired professor of economics at Leeds University.... At least three other Stasi agents could be identified this week from the files."

Sunday Times (London). "[Insight:] The University that Taught Britons to Spy for the Stasi." 19 Sep. 1999. [http://www.the-times.co.uk]

"Stasi documents obtained by The Sunday Times" reveal that Karl Marx University in Leipzig "was a secret recruiting ground for the Stasi.... British and other westerners studying or teaching there were systematically targeted and sounded out as potential agents by East Germany's spymasters."

Syal, Rajeev, and David Harrison. "Pearson Faces Quiz on Communist Links." Telegraph (London), 19 Sep. 1999. [http://www.telegraph.co.uk]

Hull University "wants to question" economics professor Robin Pearson "about his relationships with students and whether he attempted to recruit any of them as agents for the East German security service. The authorities will ask Dr Pearson to give an account of his 12 years spying for the Stasi and 'spotting' potential British agents."

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