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Samen met de CIA
Operaties achter het IJzeren Gordijn

Author: Cees Wiebes
ISBN: 9789089537584
Released: 1 September 2016
Language: Dutch

Although it is common knowledge that during the Cold War, the Dutch intelligence agencies BID and BVD (now: AIVD) closely cooperated with the American CIA, it is little known that these services also carried out extremely secret clandestine operations behind the Iron Curtain, in Norway and even in The Hague (Netherlands).

Based on recently released secret archives, historian and former intelligence analist Cees Wiebes, gives us a revealing insight in the ultra secret operations behind the Iron Curtain, most of which had disastrous consequences, caused by double-cross, betrayal and, what the writer describes as, American amateurism.

The book is written in Dutch and is called Samen met de CIA, Operaties achter het IJzeren Gordijn (Together with the CIA, Operations behind the Iron Curtain). More than 300 pages stuffed with details about secret operations that read like a novel, due to Wiebes' pleasant writing style.

The book shows how people, mainly foreigners, were recruted by the agencies and were trained in the use of weapons, radio equipment, code and ciphers and in carrying out covert operations, in countries like Hungary, Bulgaria and Romania. It also shows how amateurism eventually cost the lives of many operatives. The Dutch role in these activities was never uncovered, as most of the operatives thought they were working for the CIA. Interestingly, these activities were carried out by the Dutch Foreign Intelligence Agency (BID) outside the view of the Dutch Cabinet.

In Operation Tom, Cees Wiebes writes about a complex double agent operation in Norway with a prominent role for a Dutch nuclear scientist. This operation lasted for no less ten years, which is unique. He also shows that high ranking members of the Dutch Communist Party (CPN), actively cooperated with Russian intelligence services, such as the KGB and the GRU.

The book not only shows how failures cost the lives of many operatives behind the Iron Curtain, it also reveals details of bugging operations that were carried out in the Netherlands against the Russian and Chinese Embassies. And it shows how the CIA used covert listening devices (bugs) that were developed secretly by a Dutch company under the covert name EASY CHAIR.

Although much of the EASY CHAIR story was published in the article Operation Easy Chair in the Dutch online magazine De Correspondent in September 2015 [1], the book gives a much more detailed account of the events and the people involved. It describes, for example, in great detail how the Russian Embassy in The Hague was bugged by modifying newly ordered furniture.

In contrast with the author's previous books, this one does not contain footnotes or illustrations. Footnotes were omitted because the sheer number of them would make the book unreadable. But for those who want to check the sources, they will eventually be submitted to an open archive.

  1. Maurits Martijn & Cees Wiebes, Operation Easy Chair
    De Correspondent. 24 September 2015.

  2. NOS Nieuwsuur, Nederland had hactieve rol bij CIA-operaties Koude Oorlog
    The Netherlands played an active role in CIA operations behind the Cold War (Dutch).
    TV broadcast 1 September 2016.
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Crypto Museum. Created: Monday 05 September 2016. Last changed: Thursday, 04 October 2018 - 07:02 CET.
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