The day we discovered our parents were Russian spies | World news | The Guardian
ing spies after passing through the enemy headquarters behind the French army lines. I treated them The German Quarterly (Fall ) ©, American .. As a result, every meeting between the two which d the heat of battle. During wartime, where there were knitters, there were often spies; a pair of which reported that Germans were knitting whole sweaters to send And “an ordinary loop knot can make the equivalent of a dot and a knot in the figure-eight manner will give you the equivalent of a dash. . Meet the menagerie. George John Dasch (February 7, – ) was a German agent who landed on American They were wearing German Navy uniforms to avoid being shot as spies if captured during the landing. and Herbert Hans Haupt (who had landed in Florida to meet with Dasch and Burger) – were tried by a military commission.
Background[ edit ] After the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7,followed by Nazi Germany's declaration of war on the United States four days later  and the United States' declaration of war on Germany in responseHitler authorized a mission to sabotage the American war effort and to make terrorist attacks on civilian targets to demoralize the American civilian population inside the United States.
Canaris recalled that during World War Ihe organized the sabotage of French installations in Morocco, and entered the United States with other German agents to plant bombs in New York arms factories, including the destruction of munitions supplies at Black Tom Islandin He hoped that Operation Pastorius would have the same kind of success they had in All eight were recruited into the Abwehr military intelligence organization and were given three weeks of intensive sabotage training in the German High Command school on an estate at Quenz Lakenear BerlinGermany.
The agents were instructed in the manufacture and use of explosivesincendiariesprimersand various forms of mechanical, chemical, and electrical delayed timing devices. Considerable time was spent developing complete background "histories" they were to use in the United States.
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They were encouraged to converse in English and to read American newspapers and magazines so no suspicion would be aroused if they were interrogated while in the United States.
The station was moved in to a private residence to protect it from demolition.
In Maythe structure was moved back to near its original location. Their mission was to stage sabotage attacks on American economic targets: The agents were also instructed to spread a wave of terror by planting explosives on bridgesrailroad stationswater facilities, and public places. It was carrying Dasch and three other saboteurs Burger, Quirin, and Henck.
The illegals could then spring into action.
The KGB sent the couple to Canada in the 80s. It was hardly James Bond, but the work of an agent has always been more tortoise than hare — years spent painstakingly building up the legend. InAlex was born; a year later the family moved to Paris. As Bezrukov and Vavilova built up their story, the country that had recruited and trained them ceased to exist.
The ideology of communism had failed; the fearsome spy agency that had dispatched agents across the globe was discredited and renamed. Under Boris Yeltsinpost-Soviet Russia seemed on the verge of becoming a failed state. He would be spying not for the Soviet system that had trained him, but for the new Russia of Vladimir Putin. I never had anything close to a suspicion.
It seemed all my friends' parents led much more exciting lives Alex Heathfield and Foley sent their sons to a bilingual French-English school in Boston, so they could maintain their French and stay in touch with European culture.
At home, the family spoke a mixture of English and French. An online video of Bezrukovappearing in his post-deportation role as a political analyst, shows him speaking smooth North American with the faintest of twangs.
When he completed his postgraduate degree at Harvard, Heathfield got a job working for Global Partners, a business development consultancy. I speak to Tim on a Sunday afternoon, talking to me on Skype from his kitchen. He has the same facial features and careful parting as his younger brother, but his hair is blond rather than dark.
Looking back on his youth, he tells me his father worked hard, making frequent business trips. When the boys were in their teens, she started work as a real estate agent. He focused on Asia, taking Mandarin lessons and spending a semester in Beijing.
The same year, the family became naturalised Americans, with US passports in addition to their Canadian nationality. The brothers would never live in Canada again; Alex had been one when they left Toronto and Tim only five — but both felt Canadian.
George John Dasch - Wikipedia
He has no recollection of them discussing Russia or the Soviet Union; they never ate Russian food, and the closest Tim says he came to a Russian was a polite boy from Kazakhstan at school. Their parents did not discuss their childhood much, but this was how they had always been and the boys had little reason to question it. In fact, he often felt disappointed by how boring and mundane they were: Bezrukov and Vavilova had been put under FBI surveillance soon after they moved to the US, probably because of a mole in the Russian agency.
Excerpts from their indictment suggest the couple lived with a level of intrigue most people would assume exists only within the pages of a spy novel.
One paragraph recounts an intercepted communication from Moscow Centre SVR headquartersexplaining how Vavilova should plan for a trip back to her motherland.