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I was Stalin's Agent

W.G. Krivitsky

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This is the classic insider's account of the workings of Joseph Stalin's regime, written by a man who was at the heart of the European intelligence network for many years. Krivitsky chronicles Stalin's attempts to induce revolutions in other countries, his intervention in counterfeit $100 bills from being traced to Moscow - where they had been printed to prop up the ailing Soviet economy. The author also exposes the hidden motivation behind many of Stalin's actions: the desire for a pact with Adolf Hitler, whom he portrayed as his bitterest enemy but whom he secretly admired.

When Stalin systematically destroyed anyone he considered a potential opponent in the Great Purge, including some of the Bolshevik Revolution's most heroic figures, Krivitsky decided to avoid their fate and seek refuge in the West. How well knew the dangers of breaking with Stalin: his childhood friend and fellow agent Ignace Reiss had been spectacularly liquidated by the Soviet secret service. At least two attempts were made on Krivitsky's life by his ex-comrades before his enigmatic death in a Washington hotel in 1941. The official verdict at the time was suicide, but Krivitsky's famous dictum that 'any fool can commit a murder but only an artist can commit a natural death' encourages the belief that his end was the job of a master.

This edition has been edited by Mark Almond, a Lecturer in Modern History at Oriel College, Oxford, who travels frequently to Russia and Eastern Europe. A contributor to a number of international newspapers, he is the author of Retreat to Moscow: Gorbachev and the East European Revolution and The Rise and Fall of the Ceausescus.


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