FP: Remind us a bit about what we learned from defectors like Anatoliy Golitsyn, Jan Sejna, Ion Pacepa, Vasili Mitrokhin, and most recently Sergei Tretyakov.
Buchar: When Anatoliy Golitsyn defected in 1961he brought a lot of valuable information about KGB penetrations that made many Western governments embarrassed. However, the most important information he brought, in his mind, was the revelation that the Soviet Union was involved in a massive deception and they had the means of succeeding in this deception, that they had established feedback within the American intelligence community and that they could monitor what was happening, and that they had put agents in place and were spreading disinformation.
That was something nobody was able or wiling to comprehend and he was quickly labelled as an unreliable conspiracy theorist. In addition to that he insisted that the CIA was penetrated by the KGB and that this created conflict within the U.S. intelligence bureaucracy. We should add that the Soviets spent a lot of energy on discrediting Golitsyn in the media and in 1962 approved a plan for his assasination. To make a long story short, in his book titled New Lies for Old in 1984, Golitsyn included 148 predictions about the “collapse of communism in Europe.“ According to researcher Mark Riebling “139 out of 148” of Golitsyn’s predictions “were fulfilled by the end of 1993. When Golitsyn slowly faded out of the spotlight in 1968, a new defector, Gen. Jan Sejna, emerged, repeating pretty much the same thing. The CIA didn’t bother to debrief him. In his 1982 book We Will Burry You, he wrote “One of the basic problems of the West is its frequent failure to recognize the existence of any Soviet ‘grand design’ at all.” And no surprise, the Czech BIS till today is still obsessed with Sejna, devoting an enormous space on its website to discredit him as a liar and crook.
Vasili Mitrokhin defected to Great Britain in 1992. Documents he brought with him helped complete the picture of the Soviets’ deception and KGB operations all around the world. It clearly revealed that the KGB saw the third world countries as the key to winning the Cold War. It should be pointed out that Mitrokhin offered his files to Americans first and they turned him down. Then he went to the British, who arranged his defection and transportation of documents from Russia. One former high-ranking CIA official told me how embarrassing it was to beg British later to see the documents. The so called “Mitrokhin’s files” also shows that KGB influence on Soviet foreign policy has been greatly underrated in the West and most of the advances in the Soviet military was achieved by covert acquisition of Western technology.
The most recent defector, Sergei Tretyakov, who defected in 2000, in the book Comrade J, is warning us: “I want to warn Americans. As people, you are very naïve about Russia and its intentions. You believe because the Soviet Union no longer exists, Russia now is your friend. It isn’t, and I can show you how the SVR is trying to destroy the US even today and even more than the KGB did during the Cold War.”
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On March 2, 2010, The Moscow Times published the article Russian Mafia Abroad Now 300,000 Strong. It is now estimated that so-called Russian Mafia controls 95% of organized crime globally. That includes drug trafficking, money laundering, black market, and so on. At the end, the article points out that Moscow has nothing to do with it, because most of these people have no Russian passports anymore, being citizens of other countries. What a convenient conclusion. Oleg Gordievsky means otherwise:
“The KGB started to control different business organizations where the Mafia was strong. Gradually they began replacing the Mafia. So, in a way, today it’s less organized crime and more KGB, which is now called the FSB. Around the whole world, especially in countries like Austria, Spain, and Hungary, there are a lot of organizations and activities that look like the Mafia. But practically all of it is run by the KGB/FSB.”