Ex-CIA historian claims Soviet asset was double agent

Adolf Tolkachev

Adolf Tolkachev

By JOSEPH FITSANAKIS | intelNews.org |
In official historical accounts of the CIA, Adolf Tolkachev is described as the Agency’s greatest Soviet asset in the 1980s, whose impact was “limitless” and of “immense value”. Tolkachev, codenamed GTVANQUISH in internal CIA documents, was a Soviet electronics engineer who conducted research for the Soviet armed forces. From 1979 until his capture in 1985, he secretly collaborated with the CIA and give the Agency countless documents on Soviet avionics and radar systems. But Benjamin Fischer, a former CIA clandestine operative and retired CIA historian, now claims that Tolkachev was actually a KGB double agent tasked by Soviet intelligence with providing US military strategists with false information. In an article (.pdf) to be published in a forthcoming issue of The Journal of Intelligence History, Fischer disputes the alleged value of Tolkachev for US military planning and implies that Tolkachev’s purported arrest and 1986 execution by the Soviets never took place. A draft version of Fischer’s forthcoming paper is available here (.pdf).

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Expert news and commentary on intelligence, espionage, spies and spying, by Dr. Joseph Fitsanakis and Ian Allen.

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