Title Profile & Character Information

A Secret Life

Annotation
"In August 1972, Ryszard Kuklinski, a highly respected colonel in the Polish Army, embarked on what would become one of the most extraordinary human intelligence operations of the Cold War. Despite extreme risk to himself and his family, he contacted the American Embassy in Bonn, and arranged a secret meeting. He told the Americans that he deplored the Soviet domination of Poland; he believed his country was on the wrong side of the Cold War. The only way he could help Poland was to work against its oppressor, the Soviet Union, and deliver its deepest military secrets to the West." "Over the next nine years, Kuklinski rose quickly in the Polish Defense Ministry, acting as a liaison to Moscow, and helping to prepare for a "hot war" with the West. But he also lived a life of subterfuge - of dead drops, messages written in invisible ink, miniature cameras, and electronic transmitters - as he passed invaluable intelligence to the Americans. In 1980, he told the CIA about preparations by Moscow to invade Poland. In 1981, he gave the CIA the secret plans to crush the burgeoning Solidarity movement. By late 1981, he had provided 40,265 pages of highly classified Soviet documentary intelligence, one CIA memorandum said, and was "the best placed source now available to the American government in the Soviet bloc." Then, as he was about to be discovered, Kuklinski revealed his covert activities to his stunned family, and asked them to join him in a dangerous escape to the West." "Benjamin Weiser pieced together Kuklinski's untold story through extensive interviews and unusual access to the CIA's long-restricted archives on the case. He reconstructs the story from the American side as well, revealing the innovative methods and technology used by the agency to help Kuklinski carry out his operation without being detected. Weiser tells of the CIA officers who met Kuklinski furtively on the streets of Warsaw, and the case officer code-named Daniel, who began a clandestine and deeply personal correspondence with Kuklinski."--BOOK JACKET.Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved


Author Notes
  Benjamin Weiser has been a metropolitan reporter on the New York Times since 1997, where he has covered legal issues and terrorism. Before joining the Times, he spent eighteen years as a reporter for the Washington Post, where he served on the investigative staff. His journalism has received the George Polk and Livingston awards