“Their Need Was Great”: Émigrés and Anglo-American Intelligence Operations in the Early Cold War

Cacciatore, F. 2018. “Their Need Was Great”: Émigrés and Anglo-American Intelligence Operations in the Early Cold War. PhD thesis University of Westminster History, Sociology and Criminology

Title“Their Need Was Great”: Émigrés and Anglo-American Intelligence Operations in the Early Cold War
TypePhD thesis
AuthorsCacciatore, F.
Abstract

Covert action during the Cold War has been the subject of much historiography. This research, however, is based for the most part on primary sources, specifically on the records declassified in the United States in 2007 as a consequence of the Nazi War Crimes Disclosure Act. The majority of the historiography on this topic either predates or neglects these records.

The study of covert operations inside the Iron Curtain during the early Cold War, sponsored by Western states using émigré agents, usually ends with the conclusion that these operations were a failure, both in operational terms and from the point of view of the intelligence gathered. I will challenge this conclusion, showing that not only the operations gathered a significant amount of intelligence, but also that the intelligence obtained was considered valuable by policymakers and had an impact in the planning and policymaking strategies of the early Cold War. The focus on primary sources also allowed a detailed description of the practical aspects of the operations, leading to a more coherent and solid analysis of their development and consequences.

This study focuses on American operations, due to the abundance of records available. British operations have also been considered and assessed in the best way the author found possible. Two case studies have been selected, based on the nationality of the émigré agents used: White Russians and Ukrainians. The intelligence outcome from these operations has been carefully analysed, and their influence on policymaking assessed in the wider context of the Cold War. The conclusion is a complete re-evaluation of the importance and value of Western Human intelligence in the late 1940s and 1950s.

Year2018
File

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