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Appendix A-D Skipped (diagrams)

Appendix E. The part the Soviet athletes play

Below are a number of examples of the very close relationship between the sporting and military achievements of Soviet athletes.

Vladimir Myagkov. In the Soviet ski championships in 1939 Myagkov put up an exceptionally good time over the 20-kilometre distance, and became Soviet champion at that distance. During the war he was called into the Army and put in charge of a small unit of athletes which came directly under the Intelligence directorate of the front. He was later killed in fighting behind enemy lines. He was the first of the top Soviet athletes to be made a Hero of the Soviet Union, in his case posthumously. The tasks that Myagkov's sports unit was carrying out, the circumstances of his death and the act for which he was made a Hero remain a Soviet state secret to this day.

Porfiri Polosukhin. A Red Army officer before the war, he held world records at parachute jumping. He had been an instructor training special troops for operations on enemy territory. During the war he continued to train parachutists for spetsnaz units of 'guard minelayers'. He was often behind the enemy's lines, and he developed a method of camouflaging airfields and of communicating with Soviet aircraft from secret partisan airfields. This original system operated until the end of the war and was never detected by the enemy, as a result of which connection by air with partisan units, especially with spetsnaz and osnaz units, was exceptionally reliable. After the war many a soldier from special troops trained by Polosukhin became world and European parachute champions. Dmitri Kositsyn. Before the war he headed the skating department in one of the State Institutes of Physical Culture. It was supposed to be a civilian institute, but the teachers and many of the students had military rank. Kositsyn was a captain and had some notable achievements to his credit in sport, having established a number of Soviet records. During the war he commanded a special unit known as 'Black Death'. From that 'civilian' institute, in the first week of war alone, thirteen such units were formed. They engaged in active terrorist work in support of the Red Army, and the speed with which the units were formed suggests that long before the war all the members of the units had been carefully screened and trained. Otherwise they would not have been sent behind the lines. Kositsyn's unit acquired a name as the most daring and ruthless of all the formations on the Leningrad front.

Makhmud Umarov. During the Second World War Umarov was a soldier in an independent spetsnaz mine-laying battalion. He was several times dropped with a group of men behind enemy lines. He had two professions: he was a crack shot, and a doctor. After the war he was an officer in the Intelligence directorate of the Leningrad military district. He continued to have two professions, and as a doctor-psychiatrist he received an honorary doctorate for theoretical work. As a crack shot he became European and world champion; in fact, he was five times European champion and three times world champion. He won two Olympic silver medals for pistol shooting, in Melbourne and in Rome. After the resurrection of spetsnaz he served as an officer in that organisation, where both his professions were valued. Thanks to his sporting activities Lieutenant-Colonel Umarov visited many countries of the world and had extensive connections. In 1961 Makhmud Umarov suddenly disappeared from the medical and sporting scenes. There is some reason to believe that he died in very strange circumstances.

Yuri Borisovich Chesnokov. A man of unusual physical strength and endurance, he took part in many kinds of sport. He was particularly successful at volleyball: twice world champion and Olympic champion. Chesnokov's physical qualities were noticed very early and as soon as he finished school he was taken into the Academy of Military Engineering, although he was not an officer. From that time he was closely involved in the theory and practice of using explosives. Apart from an Olympic gold medal he has another gold medal for his work on the technique of causing explosions. Chesnokov is now a spetsnaz colonel. Valentin Yakovlevich Kudrevatykh. He joined the para-military DOSAAF organisation when he was still at school. He took up parachute jumping, gliding and rifle shooting at the same time. In May 1956 he made his first parachute jump. Two years later, at the age of eighteen, he had reached a high level at parachute jumping and shooting. In 1959 he was called into the army, serving in the airborne forces. In 1961 he set five world records in one week in parachute sport, for which he was promoted sergeant and sent to the airborne officers' school in Ryazan. After that he was sent to spetsnaz and put in command of some special women's units. He had under his command the most outstanding women athletes, including Antonina Kensitskaya, to whom he is now married. She has established thirteen world records, her husband fifteen. He made parachute jumps (often with a women's group) in the most incredible conditions, landing in the mountains, in forests, on the roofs of houses and so forth. Kudrevatykh took part in practically all the tests of new parachute equipment and weapons. Along with a group of professional women parachutists he took part in the experimental group drop from a critically low height on 1 March 1968. Then, as he was completing his 5,555th jump, he got into a critical situation. Black humour among Soviet airborne troops says that, if neither the main nor the reserve parachute opens, the parachutist still has a whole twenty seconds to learn to fly. Kudrevatykh did not learn to fly in those last seconds, but he managed with his body and the unopened parachutes to slow his fall. He spent more than two years in hospital and went through more than ten operations. When he was discharged he made his 5,556th jump. Many Soviet military papers published pictures of that jump. As usual Kudrevatykh jumped in the company of professional women parachutists. But there are no women in the Soviet airborne divisions. Only in spetsnaz.

After making that jump Kudrevatykh was promoted full colonel.

Appendix F. The Spetsnaz Intelligence Point (RP-SN)

Imagine that you have graduated from the 3rd faculty (operational intelligence) of the Military-Diplomatic Academy of the General Staff. If you have passed out successfully you will be sent to one of the twenty Intelligence directorates (RUs), which are to be found in the headquarters of military districts, groups of forces and fleets.

On the first day I spent at the Military-Diplomatic Academy I realised that diplomacy is espionage and that military diplomacy is military espionage. Successful completion of the 3rd faculty of the Military-Diplomatic Academy means serving in one of the Intelligence directorates, or in subordinate units directly connected with the recruitment of foreign agents and managing them.

Imagine you have been posted to the Intelligence Directorate of the Kiev military district. Kiev is without doubt the most beautiful city in the Soviet Union, and I have heard it said more than once by Western journalists who have visited Kiev that it is the most beautiful city in the world.

So you are now in the enormous building housing the headquarters of the Kiev military district. At different times all the outstanding military leaders of the Soviet Union have worked in this magnificent building: Zhukov, Bagramyan, Vatutin, Koshevoi, Chuikov, Kulikov, Yakubovsky and many others. The office of the officer commanding the district is on the second floor. To the right of his office are the massive doors to the Operational Directorate. To the left are the no less massive doors to the Intelligence Directorate. It is a symbolic placing: the first directorate (battle planning) is the commanding officer's right hand, while the second directorate (razvedka) is his left. There are many other directorates and departments in the headquarters, but they are all on other floors.

Your first visit to the Intelligence Directorate at the district headquarters takes place, of course, in the company of one of the officers. Otherwise you would simply not be admitted.

Before entering the headquarters you must call at the permit office and produce your authority. You are given a number to phone and an officer comes to escort you. The permit office examines your documents very carefully and issues you with a temporary pass. The officer then leads you along endless corridors and up numerous stairs. You must be ready at every turn to produce your permit and officer's identity card. Your documents are checked many times before you reach the district's head of razvedka.

Now you are in the general's huge office. Facing you is a major-general, the head of razvedka for the Kiev military district. You introduce yourself to him: 'Comrade general, Captain so-and-so reporting for further duty.'

The general asks you a few questions, and as he talks with you about trivialities he decides your fate. There are a number of possibilities. Perhaps he doesn't take to you and so decides not to take you on. You will be posted to the district Personnel Directorate and will never again have anything to do with Intelligence work. Or he may like you but not very much. In that case he will send you for reconnaissance work on lower floors to serve in a division or regiment. You will be working in razvedka, but not with the agent network.

If you really please him several paths will be open to you. The razvedka of a military district is a gigantic organisation with a great deal of work to do. Firstly, he can post you to the headquarters of one of three armies to work in the headquarters Intelligence department, where you will be sent on to an intelligence post (RP) to recruit secret agent-informers to work for that army.

Secondly, he can leave you in the Intelligence directorate for work in the second (agent network) or the third (spetsnaz) department. Thirdly, he can post you to one of the places where the recruitment of foreigners to work for the Kiev military district is actually taking place. There are two such places: the Intelligence centre (RZs) and the spetsnaz Intelligence point (RP spetsnaz).

The general may ask you for your own opinion. Your reply must be short: for example - I don't mind where I work, so long as it is not at headquarters, preferably at recruitment. The general expects that sort of reply from you. Intelligence has no need of an officer who is not bursting to do recruiting work. If someone has got into Intelligence work but is not burning with desire to recruit foreigners, it means he has made a mistake in his choice of profession. It also means that the people who recommended him for Intelligence work and spent years training him at the Military-Diplomatic Academy were also mistaken.

The general asks his final question: what kind of agents do you want to recruit - for providing information or for collaborating with spetsnaz? Every intelligence officer at the front and fleet level must know how to recruit agents of both kinds. It is, you say, all the same to you.

'All right,' the general says, 'I am appointing you an officer in the spetsnaz Intelligence point of the 3rd department of the Second Directorate of the headquarters of the Kiev military district. The order will be issued in writing tomorrow. I wish you well.'

You thank the general for the trust placed in you, salute smartly, click your heels, and leave the office. The escorting officer awaits you at the exit. From here, without any permits, you come out into a little courtyard, where there is always a little prison van waiting. The door slams behind you and you are in a mousetrap. Facing you is a little opaque window with a strong grille over it. No use trying to look out. The van twists and turns round the city's streets, often stopping and changing direction, and you realise that it is stopping at traffic lights. At last the van drives through some huge gates and comes to a halt. The door is opened and you step out into the courtyard of the penal battalion of the Kiev military district. It is a military prison. Welcome to your new place of work.

* * *

The ancient city of Kiev has seen conquerors from all over the world pass down its streets. Some of them razed the city to the ground; others fortified it; then a third lot destroyed it again. The fortifications around the ruined and burnt-out city of Kiev were built for the last time in 1943 on Hitler's orders. On the approaches to Kiev you can come across fortifications of all ages, from the concrete pillboxes of the twentieth century to the ruins of walls that were built five hundred years before the arrival of Batu Khan.

The place you have been brought to is a fort built at the time of Catherine the Great. It is built on the south-west approaches to the city at the top of steep cliffs covered with ancient oaks. Alongside are other forts, an enormous ancient monastery, and an ancient fortress which now houses a military hospital.

Through the centuries military installations of the most varied kinds - stores, barracks, headquarters - have been built on the most dangerous approaches to the city and, apart from the basic purpose, they have also served as fortifications. The fort we have come to also served two purposes: as a barracks for 500 to 700 soldiers, and as a fort. Circular in shape, its outside walls used to have only narrow slits and broad embrasures for guns. These have now all been filled in and the only remaining windows are those that look into the internal courtyard. The fort has only one gateway, a well-defended tunnel through the mighty walls. A brick wall has been added around the fort. From the outside it looks like a high brick wall in a narrow lane, with yet another brick wall, higher than the first one, behind it.

Both the inner and outer courtyards of the fort are split up into numerous sectors and little yards divided by smaller walls and a whole jungle of barbed wire. The sectors have their own strange labels: the numbering has been so devised that no one should be able to discern any logic in it. The absence of any system facilitates the secrecy surrounding the establishment.

There are three companies of men undergoing punishment and one guard company in the penal battalion. The men in the guard company have only a very vague idea of who visits the battalion and why. They have only their instructions which have to be carried out: the men undergoing punishment can be only in the inner courtyard in certain sectors; officers who have a triangle stamped in their passes are allowed into certain other sectors; officers with a little star stamped in their passes are allowed to enter other sectors; and so forth.

Apart from the officers of the penal battalion, frequent callers at the fort are officers of the military prosecutor's office, the military commandant of the city, and officers of the commandant's office: investigators, lawyers. And there is a sector set aside for you. The spetsnaz intelligence point has no connection at all with the penal battalion. But if it were to be situated separately in some building, sooner or later people in the vicinity would be struck by the suspicious behaviour of the people occupying the building. Here in the penal battalion you are hidden from curious eyes.

The spetsnaz intelligence point is a small military unit headed by a lieutenant-colonel, who has under him a number of officers, graduates from the Military-Diplomatic Academy, and a few sergeants and privates who carry out support functions without having any idea (or the correct idea) of what the officers are engaged on. Officers of the penal battalion and those visiting the battalion are not supposed to ask what goes on in your sector. Many years back one of your predecessors appeared to allow himself the luxury of 'careless talk', to the effect that his was a group reporting directly to the officer commanding the district and investigating cases of corruption among the senior officers. This is sufficient to ensure that you are treated with respect and not asked any more questions.

Its location in the penal battalion gives the spetsnaz point a lot of advantages: behind such enormous walls, the command can be sure that your documents will not get burnt or lost by accident; it is under the strictest guard, with dozens of guard dogs and machine-guns mounted in towers to preserve your peace of mind; no outsider interested in what is going on inside the walls will ever get a straight answer; the independent organisation does not attract the attention of higher-ranking Soviet military leaders who are not supposed to know about GRU and spetsnaz; and even if an outsider knows something about you he cannot distinguish spetsnaz officers from among the other officers visiting the old fort.

Spetsnaz has at its disposal a number of prison vans exactly the same as those belonging to the penal battalion and with similar numbers. They are very convenient for bringing any person of interest to us into or out of your fort at any time. What is good about the prison van is that neither the visitor nor outsiders can work out exactly where the spetsnaz point is. A visitor can be invited to any well guarded place where there are usually plenty of people (the headquarters, commandant's office, police station) and then secretly brought in a closed van to the old fort, and returned in the same way so that he gets lost in the crowd. Fortunately there are several such forts in the district.

A penal battalion, that is to say a military prison, is a favourite place for the GRU to hide its branches in. There are other kinds of camouflage as well - design bureaux, missiles bases, signals centres - but they all have one feature in common: a small, secret organisation is concealed within a large, carefully guarded military establishment.

In addition to its main premises where the safes crammed with secret papers are kept, the spetsnaz Intelligence point has several secret apartments and small houses on the outskirts of the city.

Having found yourself in the place I have described, you are met by an unhappy-looking lieutenant-colonel who has probably spent his whole working life at this work. He gives you a brief order: 'You wear uniform only inside the fort and if you are called to the district headquarters. The rest of the time you wear civilian clothes.'

'I understand, comrade lieutenant-colonel.'

'But there's nothing for you to do here in the fort and even less in the headquarters. This is my place, not yours. I don't need any bureaucrats; I need hunters. Go off and come back in a month's time with material on a good foreign catch.'

'Very well.'

'Do you know the territories our district will be fighting on in a war?'

'Yes, I do.'

'Well, I need another agent there who could meet up with a spetsnaz group in any circumstances. I am giving you a month because you are just beginning your service, but the time-scale will be stricter later on. Off you go, and remember that you have got a lot of rivals in Kiev: the friends of yours who have already joined the Intelligence point are probably active in the city, the KGB is also busy, and goodness knows who else is recruiting here. And remember - you can slip up only once in our business. I shall never overlook a mistake, and neither will spetsnaz. In wartime you are shot for making a mistake. In peacetime you land in prison. You know which prison?'

* * *

That was what Kiev was like before the Chernobyl disaster. For hundreds of years barbarians from many of the countries of Asia and Europe had been doing their best to destroy my great city, but nobody inflicted such damage on it as did the Communists. The history of nuclear energy in the Soviet Union is one - very long -story of crime. The founding father of the development of nuclear energy was Lavrenti Beria, the all-powerful chief of the secret police and, as later became apparent, one of the greatest criminals of the twentieth century. The majority of the Soviet ministers, designers and engineers connected with the development of nuclear energy were kept in prisons, and not only in Stalin's time. All nuclear plants are built with prison labour. I have personally seen thousands of convicts working in the uranium mines in the Kirovograd region. (See V. Suvorov, Aquarium). The convicts have no incentive whatsoever to turn out good quality work.

Sooner or later this was bound to end in disaster. The paper Literaturnaya Ukraina (27 March 1986) reported on the criminal attitude to construction work and the use of defective materials and obsolete technology at Chernobyl. The paper issued a warning that several generations of people would have to pay for the irresponsible attitude of the people in charge of the building work. But nobody paid any attention to this article or others like it; a month later the catastrophe took place.