Analysis & Opinions - Politico

The Unbelievable Story of How the CIA Helped Foil a Russian Spy Ring in London

| Nov. 27, 2017

Newly released documents reveal a real-life plot that seems ripped from a Cold War novel.

quiet residential street, like any other, in northwest London. Neighbors say the occupants of 45 Cranley Drive, in Ruislip, are friendly and host good parties. They are antiquarian booksellers in London, owning a shop on the Strand. But their home is not ordinary, it is a house of secrets: Under cover of bland suburbia, they are using it to run a sophisticated deep-cover Russian spy ring, which has penetrated to the heart of a highly sensitive British government research establishment, which shares military secrets with the United States. Their spy network is even linked to deep-cover Kremlin agents in the United States stealing atomic secrets.

This is not a new bombshell revelation from the on-going Trump-Russia saga, nor a scene from the TV series The Americans, nor is it taken from a John Le Carré novel— though Russian spies posing as London antiquarian booksellers is like something from the pages of Le Carré. This is fact, not fiction— and the facts are important to understand Russia’s intelligence operations today.

For more information on this publication: Belfer Communications Office
For Academic Citation: Walton, Calder.“The Unbelievable Story of How the CIA Helped Foil a Russian Spy Ring in London .” Politico, November 27, 2017.