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1935 poster of Stalin and Voroshilov at the Military Parade.Another important facet of KGB preventive work was censorship of literature and other media, which it exercised at both an informal and a formal level. The KGB censored informally by harassing writers and artists, arranging for their expulsion from professional organizations or from their jobs, and threatening them with prosecution for their unorthodox views. Such forms of intimidation forced many writers and artists to exercise selfcensorship by producing only what they thought would be acceptable.

The KGB maintained strong surveillance over the Union of writers, as well as over the journalists' and artists' unions, where KGB representatives occupied top administrative posts.

This Soviet propaganda poster reads - Be watchful and vigilant! - F.Dzerzhinsky - chief and founder of KGB, 1951.The KGB played an important role in the system of formal censorship by taking part in the work of the Main Administration for Safeguarding State Secrets in the Press.

According to Western sources, the KGB had custody and transport responsibilities for nuclear charges, which were separated from missiles and aircraft, until the late 1960s. At that time the KGB apparently relinquished its physical control over nuclear warheads, but it remained involved in the nuclear control process.

The proportion of Soviet citizens abroad who were engaged in intelligence gathering was estimated to range from 30 to 40 percent in the United States to over 50 percent in some Third World countries. In addition, many Soviet representatives who were not intelligence officers were nevertheless given some sort of assignment by the KGB.

Apparently, the First Chief Directorate had little trouble recruiting personnel for its foreign operations. The high salaries, military rank, access to foreign currency, and opportunity to live abroad offered attractive enticements to young people choosing a career. First Chief Directorate recruits were usually graduates of prestigious higher education institutions and had knowledge of one or more foreign languages.

The KGB had a two-year postgraduate training course for these recruits at its Higher Intelligence School located near Moscow. The curriculum included the use of ciphers, arms and sabotage training, history and economics according to Marxist-Leninist theory, CPSU history, law, and foreign languages.

1953 Soviet propaganda poster - Be extremely watchful when on guard!The KGB was the primary agency responsible for supplying the Kremlin with foreign intelligence. According to former Soviet diplomat Arkady Shevchenko, Moscow cabled out questions on a daily basis to KGB rezidenty abroad to guide them in their tasks. In addition to political intelligence, KGB officers concentrated increasingly on efforts to acquire advanced Western technology.

The KGB reportedly acted as a collector of militarily significant Western technology (in the form of documents and hardware) on behalf of the Military Industrial Commission of the Presidium of the Council of Ministers. This commission coordinated the development of all Soviet weapons systems, along with the program to acquire Western technology, and it levied requirements among the KGB, the Main Intelligence Directorate, and several other agencies, including those of East European intelligence services.

For decades, the creation of the nuclear bomb in Russia has been believed to be the result of titanic efforts undertaken by the Soviet scientists and entire people. In the West, quite the opposite, they have always said that the secrets of the most devastating weapon of the 20th century had been stolen by the Soviet spies. It was in the late 80-s only, that in the Soviet Union they started to talk about the contribution by the foreign scientists and the role of the Soviet intelligence in the liquidation of the US nuclear monopoly.
Medal for Irreproachable Service in KGB, 3rd class (for 10 years of service).The KGB relied heavily on the intelligence services of satellite countries in carrying out both active measures and espionage operations. The intelligence services of the German Democratic Republic (East Germany), Czechoslovakia, Poland, Hungary, Bulgaria, and Cuba formed important adjuncts to the KGB. Although formally subordinated to their own governments, these satellite intelligence services were, according to many Western experts, heavily influenced by the KGB.

A former official in the Czechoslovak intelligence service stated that Soviet intelligence was informed about every major aspect of Czechoslovak intelligence activities, and Soviet advisers (called liaison officers) participated in planning major operations and assessing the results.

As far back as the 1960s, the KGB introduced a new element of coordination with the satellite intelligence services through the creation of departments for disinformation in East German, Czechoslovak, and Hungarian intelligence services and the establishment of direct lines of communication from these departments to the KGB.

KGB watch, collectables.The KGB's Security Troops, which numbered about 40,000 in 1989, provided the KGB with a coercive potential. Although Soviet sources did not specify the functions of these special troops, Western analysts thought that one of their main tasks was to guard the top leadership in the Kremlin, as well as key government and party buildings and officials at the republic and regional levels. Special KGB troops also were trained for sabotage and diversionary missions abroad.

Don`t blab! Soviet KGB poster, 1941.For the KGB, 1967 was not the best of times. A few years earlier, the Penkovsky case had blown up in the agency's face. Oleg Penkovsky, a colonel in Soviet intelligence, had been passing top-level intelligence information to the British, including names and identities of several hundred Soviet agents. He was a voluminous source of detailed information like the kind that enabled President Kennedy to act so effectively against Khrushchev at the time of the Cuban missile crisis.

Penkovsky was caught, tried, and executed, but not before very serious damage had been done to the worldwide KGB operation. The overwhelming Israeli defeat of Egypt, armed and advised by the Soviet Union, in the 1967 "Six-Day War" also reflected little credit on either the Soviet military or the KGB. A serious shakeup in the KGB was badly needed.

As Andropov took charge of the agency that year, he once again found others in powerful positions who were able to help him conduct such a shakeup and whose assistance considerably eased his path to greater power. One of these was Sergei Vinogradov, a general in the KGB. He had served as Soviet Ambassador to Turkey, Egypt and France. As one of the most powerful men in Soviet foreign policy, Vinogradov was able to bring Andropov into the highest Kremlin councils.

In addition, there was Alexander Panyushkin, a senior member of the Personnel Department of the Party Central Committee, who was responsible for all higher-level appointments of Soviet citizens working abroad in embassies, trade, and other activities. Friendship with Panyushkin was especially useful for the ambitious Andropov, because Panyushkin had been Soviet Ambassador to both the United States and China. Both of these men were of great influence on Andropov and greatly broadened his knowledge of the diverse world outside the Soviet empire.

Andropov was also able to call on assistance from the man who certainly must rank as the greatest spy of the twentieth century, if not of all time - the Englishman, Harold A.R. "Kim" Philby. By the end of World War II, Philby was head of the Soviet Section of British intelligence and later served as liaison between the British intelligence services and the CIA in Washington. It appears that the initial recruiting of Philby may have been made in 1933 by Vinogradov. The two certainly met in Turkey in 1947, when Vinogradov was Soviet Ambassador in Ankara. In 1963, after a brilliant career as a Soviet agent working in the British intelligence service spanning nearly three decades, Philby sought safety in Moscow.

In the eyes of the KGB, Philby was seen as almost god-like. His authority on espionage matters was never questioned. He had everything - culture, knowledge, intelligence, education, experience, superb mannerism every way the antithesis of many KGB officers of the time. Myths about Philby's exploits circulated through-out the KGB, and imitation of this remarkable spy became inevitable.

Many in the West may have felt that Philby was enjoying well-deserved rest and retirement in Moscow, but the fact is that he became both friend and adviser to Yuri Andropov. Through their relationship, the KGB was transformed from an effective but somewhat crude intelligence agency to a tough and increasingly sophisticated global operation.

Reorganizing any Soviet bureaucracy, even the secret police, for greater efficiency is a monumental task, but Andropov and Philby were able to bring about the essential changes. One of the greatest needs was to improve the quality of KGB officers and agents. The top students from the Institute of International Relations were recruited directly by the KGB. Not only were these young men far better educated, they also had to demonstrate a high level of intellectual capability and a potential for a well-mannered and sophisticated personality. Philby and Andropov knew that really effective KGB operatives would have to be able to mix and be accepted in the highest levels of diplomacy, business, and society throughout the world.

Although membership in the KGB was not often the first career choice of many of these brighter young men, they knew, as does everyone in the Soviet Union, that KGB officers have perks and privileges far above those in other more distinguished and accepted professions. KGB officers receive much higher pay-up to five times that of a qualified engineer, and several times that of an important professor. Beyond that there are the other benefits, usually more important than mere rubles: buying privileges at special food and clothing stores, hospitals and health services of a quality far above those available to ordinary Soviet citizens, cars, as well as special admission to sports, cultural and recreational events and facilities. The KGB was able to make offers to the best and brightest that few were able to refuse.

A new domestic propaganda campaign was launched to improve the image of the KGB. Television and motion pictures began showing a whole succession of Soviet secret police agencies in the most favorable light. The exceptional exploits of spy Maxim Isaev and Richard Sorge in Japan became a popular television series, though it was never shown that Sorge was finally caught and executed by the Japanese in 1944. KGB officers and agents invariably appear as smooth, suave and cosmopolitan, outsmarting the enemy all over the world, and every time for the salvation and greater glory of the Soviet Union. (These new Soviet media heroes are something of a James Bond type, but without the fancy gadgetry of the Bond films, and never bedding down with beautiful women at the slightest opportunity.)

Although the KGB, in its international operation has shown a high level of sophistication combined with the use of the latest technological advances, its all-seeing and omnipotent domestic investigation and control activities continue to manifest the rough-and-tough characteristics of an earlier KGB. There has, however, been a much greater use of the instruments of contemporary psychology and psychiatry, as well as hal-lucinogenic and other drugs. The simplistic rule of thumb continues: if you oppose the Soviet system, you must be insane.

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