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Arnold Deutsch was born in Czechoslovakia in 1903. He moved to Austria as a child. Deutsch studied psychology, philosophy and chemistry at the University of Vienna and obtained his PhD in 1927. He was a supporter of the theories of Wilhelm Reich and ran clinics designed to bring birth control and sexual enlightenment to workers in Vienna. "Though his thesis had been on chemistry, Deutsch's religious faith had been replaced by an ardent communist to the Communist International's vision of a new world order which would free the human race from exploitation and alienation." (1)
Soon after leaving university he married an Austrian woman, Josefine. The couple were both recruited by Comintern and worked for OMS, its international liaison department. Over the next couple of years they travelled around the world working as couriers. In 1932 he was sent to Moscow where he was trained as an NKVD agent. He was given the codename Stefan and used the pseudonym Otto. "A handsome man with twinkling blue eyes and fair curly hair, Deutsch was far from the stereotype middle-European trader's son raised in the Orthodox Jewish quarter of Vienna." (2)
Deutsch was employed by the Foreign Department (INO) of the NKVD responsible for overseas operations. Alexander Orlov the Chief of the Economic Department for Foreign Trade helped to change policy concerning spies. Up until this time, most Soviet agents were usually diplomats. In this way NKVD officers enjoyed the protection of diplomatic immunity. However, the opposing intelligence service had little difficulty identifying the agents and therefore could minimize their effectiveness. Orlov's idea was to employ what became known as "illegals" as agents. Deutsch became a NKVD officer and joined other "illegals" such as Richard Sorge, Walter Krivitsky, Ignaz Reiss, Leopard Trepper and Theodore Maly working in Europe. Senior MI5 agent, Peter Wright, pointed out: "They were often not Russians at all, although they held Russian citizenship. They were Trotskyist Communists who believed in international Communism and the Comintern. They worked undercover, often at great personal risk, and traveled throughout the world in search of potential recruits. They were the best recruiters and controllers the Russian Intelligence Service ever had. They all knew each other, and between them they recruited and built high-grade spy rings." (3)
Early in 1934 Deutsche was sent to London. As a cover for his spying activities did post-graduate work at London University. He was also sponsored by his cousin, Oscar Deutsch, the millionaire owner of the Odeon (Oscar Deutsch Entertains Our Nation) cinema chain. (4) Deutsche and his wife (trained as a radio operator) went to live in a flat in Lawn Road, Hampstead. His next door neighbour was crime novelist Agatha Christie. (5)
In May 1934 he made contact with Litzi Friedmann and Edith Tudor Hart, the wife of Alex Tudor Hart. They discussed the recruitment of Kim Philby. "According to her report on Philby's file, through her own contacts with the Austrian underground Tudor Hart ran a swift check and, when this proved positive, Deutsch immediately recommended... that he pre-empt the standard operating procedure by authorizing a preliminary personal sounding out of Philby." (6)
Deutsch made contact with Philby in June 1934. "Lizzy came home one evening and told me that she had arranged for me to meet a 'man of decisive importance'. I questioned her about it but she would give me no details. The rendezvous took place in Regents Park. The man described himself as Otto. I discovered much later from a photograph in MI5 files that the name he went by was Arnold Deutsch. I think that he was of Czech origin; about 5ft 7in, stout, with blue eyes and light curly hair. Though a convinced Communist, he had a strong humanistic streak. He hated London, adored Paris, and spoke of it with deeply loving affection. He was a man of considerable cultural background." (7)
Deutsch asked Philby if he was willing to spy for the Soviet Union: "Otto spoke at great length, arguing that a person with my family background and possibilities could do far more for Communism than the run-of-the-mill Party member or sympathiser... I accepted. His first instructions were that both Lizzy and I should break off as quickly as possible all personal contact with our Communist friends." It is claimed by Christopher Andrew, the author of The Defence of the Realm: The Authorized History of MI5 (2009) that Philby became the first of "the ablest group of British agents ever recruited by a foreign intelligence service." (8)
Deutsch reported back to his superiors that Philby was an excellent agent. "His father... is an ambitious tyrant and wanted to make a great man out of his son. He repressed all his son's desires. That is why he is a very timid and irresolute person. He has a bit of a stammer and this increases his diffidence... However, he handles our money very carefully. He enjoys great love and respect for his seriousness and honesty. He was ready, without questioning, to do anything for us and has shown all his seriousness and diligence working for us." (9)
The two men developed a close relationship. Kim Philby said of Arnold Deutsch: "He was a marvellous man. Simply marvellous. I felt that immediately. And the feeling never left me... The first thing you noticed about him were his eyes. He looked at you as if nothing more important in life than you and talking to you existed at that moment.... And he had a marvellous sense of humour." (10)
Deutsch told Philby that he must break of all communist contacts. He should establish a new political image as a right-winger, even a Nazi-sympathiser. "He must become, to all outward appearances, a conventional member of the very class he was committed to opposing." Deutsch told him. "The anti-fascist movement needs people who can enter into the bourgeoisie." Deutsch gave him a new Minox subminiature camera and gave him a codename (Sohnchen). He began to instruct Philby on the rudiments of tradecraft: how to arrange a meeting; where to leave messages; how to detect if his telephone was bugged; how to spot a tail, and how to lose one. His first task was to spy on his father, Harry St John Bridger Philby, as it was believed he had important secret documents in his office. (11)
Philby was told by Deutsch to get a job in journalism as it would give him excellent cover for spying for the Soviet Union. His first job was as a sub-editor at the World Review of Reviews, a literary and political monthly. He then moved to the Anglo-German Trade Gazette, a magazine devoted to improving economic relations between Britain and Germany which was partly financed by the Nazi Germany government. He also joined the Anglo-German Fellowship, a pro-fascist society formed in 1935 to foster closer understanding with Adolf Hitler. Deutsch pointed out that the group offered Philby ideal political camouflage, as well as the opportunity of finding out information that would be of help to Joseph Stalin and the Soviet government. (12)
Philby found playing the role of a keen young fascist "profoundly repulsive" because "in the eyes of my friends, even conservative ones, but honest conservatives, I looked pro-Nazi". (13) Malcolm Muggeridge was one of those who found Philby's conversion to fascism believable: "A born adventurer like Kim, with very little political subtlety and an eye always to the main chance, was almost certainly attracted by this Anglo-German nonsense. It would have been quite in character. He admired Goebbels and once told me he could easily have worked with him. Don't forget at this stage, in 1936, the bandwaggon between London and Berlin hadn't stopped rolling, and Kim would have been quite ready to jump on it for that very reason." (14)
Arnold Deutsch asked Kim Philby to make a list of potential recruits. The first person he approached was his friend, Donald Maclean, who had been a fellow member of the Cambridge University Socialist Society (CUSS) and now working in the Foreign Office. Philby invited him to dinner, and hinted that there was important clandestine work to be done on behalf of the Soviet Union. He told him that "the people I could introduce you to are very serious." Maclean agreed to met Deutsch. He was told to carry a book with a bright yellow cover into a particular café at a certain time. Deutsch was impressed with Maclean who he described as being "very serious and aloof" with "good connections". Maclean was given the codename "Orphan". (15) Maclean was also ordered to give up his communist friends.
In May 1934 Philby arranged for Deutsch to meet another one of his CUSS friends, Guy Burgess. (16) At first Deutsch rejected Burgess as a potential spy. He reported to headquarters that Burgess was "very smart... but a bit superficial and could let slip in some circumstances." Burgess began to suspect that his friend Maclean was working for the Soviets. He told Maclean: "Do you think that I believe for even one jot that you have stopped being a communist? You're simply up to something." (17) When Maclean told Deutsch about the conversation, he reluctantly signed him up. Burgess went around telling anyone who would listen that he had swapped Karl Marx for Benito Mussolini and was now a devotee of Italian fascism. (18)
Burgess now suggested the recruitment of one of his friends, Anthony Blunt. According to Blunt's biographer, Michael Kitson: "Blunt - hitherto the image of an elegant, apolitical, social young academic - began to take an interest in Marxism under the influence of his friend the charming, scandalous Guy Burgess, a fellow Apostle, who had recently converted to communism. Blunt's move to the left can be plotted in his art reviews, in which he turned from a Bloomsbury acolyte into an increasingly dogmatic defender of social realism. He eventually came to attack even his favourite contemporary artist, Picasso, for the painting Guernica's insufficient incorporation of communism." (19)
Arnold Deutsch handled recruitment but much of the day-to-day management of the spies were carried out by another agent, Theodore Maly. Born in Timişoara, Romania, he studied theology and became a priest but on the outbreak of the First World War he joined the Austro-Hungarian Army. He told Elsa Poretsky, the wife of Ignaz Reiss: "During the war I was a chaplain, I had just been ordained as a priest. I was taken prisoner in the Carpathians. I saw all the horrors, young men with frozen limbs dying in the trenches. I was moved from one camp to another and starved along with other prisoners. We were all covered with vermin and many were dying of typhus. I lost my faith in God and when the revolution broke out I joined the Bolsheviks. I broke with my past completely. I was no longer a Hungarian, a priest, a Christian, even anyone's son. I became a Communist and have always remained one." (20)
As Ben Macintyre, the author of A Spy Among Friends (2014), has pointed out: "For a spy, Maly was conspicuous, standing six feet four inches tall, with a shiny grey complexion", and gold fillings in his front teeth. But he was a most subtle controller, who shared Deutsch's admiration for Philby." (21) Maly described Philby as "an inspirational figure, a true comrade and idealist." (22) According to Deutsch: "Both of them (Philby and Maly) were intelligent and experienced professionals, as well as genuinely very good people." (23)
In 1936 Deutsch met James Klugmann, the head of recruitment for NKVD agents based in England. His network at this time included Kim Philby, Donald Maclean, Anthony Blunt and Guy Burgess. Deutsch's main objective was to get Klugmann to help recruit John Cairncross as a spy. Klugmann became an important figure in the network. However, as he was known to the police as an active member of the Communist Party of Great Britain meant that he was not used as a spy. However, he was given the codename Mayor and was used to compile reports on other agents.
In April 1937 Deutsch reported: "Mayor (James Klugmann) is a party functionary who devotes himself entirely to the party. He is a quiet and thoughtful man. Modest, conscientious, industrious and serious. Everybody who knows him likes him and respects him. He exercises great influence over people. As a person he is honest and beyond reproach. Responsive and attentive to comrades. Ready to bring any offer for the sake of the party. A good organizer. Very careful with money. Never takes anything for himself. Outwardly shy and reserved. Strict in respect of women. Pays no attention to his appearance. He can do much for us if we are recommended to him by Harry Pollitt or Tores. He is known to the British police as an active communist. He is used to legal work and therefore incautious. But if his attention is drawn to this he will act as required." (24)
Klugmann provided reports on agents recruited by Deutsch such as Donald Maclean and Guy Burgess: "At one time he (Donald Maclean) was a party member but since he joined the diplomatic service two years ago he has broken off all relations with the party and even avoids old comrades as if he were ashamed of the fact that he has gone over to the bourgeoisie. It would not be without risk to approach him and tell him that the party counts on him... He (Guy Burgess) is the most clever and capable of them all. He has distanced himself from us, because his family relations have enabled him to move in high society: ministers, lords, bankers. He is friends with such people as Victor Rothschild. Without wanting to he still thinks on Marxist lines. It would be worthwhile to capture him because if he became an enemy he would be a dangerous enemy." (25)
Deutsch contacted headquarters in Moscow and reported that Cairncross "was very happy that we had established contact with him and was ready to start working for us at once". (26) Anthony Blunt introduced Deutsch to Michael Straight the following month. Deutsch reported: "Straight differs very much from people we have dealt with before. He is a typical American, a man of wide-ranging enterprise, who thinks he can do everything for himself.... He is full of enthusiasm, well-read, very intelligent, and a perfect student. He wants to do much for us, and, of course has all possibilities for this.... But he also gives the impression of being a dilettante, a young guy who has everything he wants, more money than he can spend, and therefore in part who has a restless conscience.... I think, under experienced guidance, he could achieve a lot. However, he needs to be educated and to have control over his personal life. It is precisely contact with people in his future profession which may turn out dangerous for him. So far, he has been an active member of the party and constantly surrounded by his friends." (27)
Christopher Andrew has argued in his book, The Defence of the Realm: The Authorized History of MI5 (2009): "KGB files credit Deutsch with the recruitment of twenty agents during his time in Britain. The most successful, however, were the Cambridge Five: Philby, Maclean, Burgess, Blunt and Cairncross.... All were committed ideological spies inspired by the myth-image of Stalin's Russia as a worker-peasant state with social justice for all rather than by the reality of a brutal dictatorship with the largest peacetime gulag in European history. Deutsch shared the same visionary faith as his Cambridge recruits in the future of a human race freed from the exploitation and alienation of the capitalist system. His message of liberation had all the greater appeal for the Five because it had a sexual as well as a political dimension. All were rebels against the strict sexual mores as well as the antiquated class system of inter war Britain. Burgess and Blunt were gay and Maclean bisexual at a time when homosexual relations, even between consenting adults, were illegal. Cairncross, like Philby a committed heterosexual, later wrote a history of polygamy." (28)
During this period Jenifer Hart also agreed to become a spy. Deutsch reported to Moscow: "Given that the Communist movement in these universities is on a mass scale and that there is a constant turnover of students, it follows that individual Communists whom we pluck out of the Party will pass unnoticed, both by the Party itself and by the outside world. People forget about them. And if at some time they do remember that they were once Communists, this will be put down to a passing fancy of youth, especially as those concerned are scions of the bourgeoisie. It is up to us to give the individual recruit a new (non-Communist) political personality." (29)
In 1937 Joseph Stalin became concerned that Soviet agents working abroad may be supporters of Leon Trotsky and his theory of World Revolution. Nikolai Yezhov established a new section of the NKVD named the Administration of Special Tasks (AST). It contained about 300 of his own trusted men from the Central Committee of the Communist Party. Yezhov's intention was complete control of the NKVD by using men who could be expected to carry out sensitive assignments without any reservations. The new AST operatives would have no allegiance to any members of the old NKVD and would therefore have no reason not to carry out an assignment against any of one of them. The AST was used to remove all those who had knowledge of the conspiracy to destroy Stalin's rivals. One of the first to be arrested was Genrikh Yagoda, the former head of the NKVD.
Within the administration of the ADT, a clandestine unit called the Mobile Group had been created to deal with those considered to be supporters of Trotsky. The head of the Mobile Group was Mikhail Shpiegelglass. By the summer of 1937, over forty intelligence agents serving abroad were summoned back to the Soviet Union. This included Deutsch, Theodore Maly, Ignaz Reiss, Alexander Orlov, Yan Berzin, Artur Artuzov, Elsa Poretsky, Dmitri Bystrolyotov, Boris Vinogradov, Peter Gutzeit, Boris Bazarov, Vladimir Antonov-Ovseenko and Walter Krivitsky. Maly, Berzin, Artuzov, Vinogradov, Gutzeit, Bazarov and Antonov-Ovseenko were all executed. Reiss and Krivitsky refused to return and were murdered abroad.
Deutsch returned to Moscow in November 1937. Unlike some of those who were recalled, Deutsch was not immediately executed. Instead he was employed by the NKVD as an expert on forgery and handwriting. According to Ben Macintyre, the author of A Spy Among Friends (2014) the fate of Deutsch has never been fully explained. "Philby would later claim he had died when a ship taking him to America, the Donbass, was torpedoed by a U-boat, this making him a victim of Hitler's agression rather than Stalin's. The KGB history reports he died en route to South America, but another KGB report claims he was heading to New York. It seems just as probable that the founder-recruiter of the Cambridge spy chain, shared Maly's fate. As a foreign-born, Jewish intellectual who had spent years abroad, he was a likely candidate for purging." (30)
Deutsch met Cairncross in May 1937 and reported to Moscow that he "was very happy that we had established contact with him and was ready to start working for us at once". KGB files credit Deutsch with the recruitment of twenty agents during his time in Britain. The most successful, however, were the Cambridge Five: Philby, Maclean, Burgess, Blunt and Cairncross. The Security Service had no suspicions about any of them until 1951. (After the release of the enormously popular Western The Magnificent Seven in 1960, some in the Centre referred to them as the "Magnificent Five".) All were committed ideological spies inspired by the myth-image of Stalin's Russia as a worker- peasant state with social justice for all rather than by the reality of a brutal dictatorship with the largest peacetime gulag in European history. Cairncross, like Philby a committed heterosexual, later wrote a history of polygamy which prompted his friend Graham Greene to comment: "Here at last is a book which will appeal strongly to all polygamists."
Michael Straight's examination success marked him as an academic high-flyer, with money and social position. He was a perfect target for Soviet recruitment, for the odds were that Straight would reach the highest echelons of the profession he chose. What made him even more interesting was the fact that his background meant he could, if willing, be pushed to the top in either the British or U.S. establishment. Yet to be assessed were his temperament and commitment: in KGB terms the extent to which he would be willing to go and how far he could be directed. Arnold Deutsch, the Jewish Austrian Comintern agent, was already aware of him. Yet Straight was still a raw 18-year-old and could not be simply signed up like a football recruit. He had to be tested, indoctrinated, and inspired before being approached by a Comintern representative a process that took years in peacetime. Once a new agent was in place, Stalin and the Moscow Center would not accept anything short of a lifetime's commitment to their cause, unless he or she were found to be incompetent. A burnt out agent who was of no further use would be pensioned off at a rate commensurate with performance. Rebellion or defection would see the agent marked for assassination.
Straight's initial steps toward a consolidation of his communist links came when two gowned, second-year Trinity students-the bird-like and clever James Klugman and the dark, brooding, and intense John Cornford-came unannounced to his modest lodgings one chilly evening in November 1934. Klugman was from a wealthy Jewish family and had been educated at Gresham's, an old and unconventional public school, as had his friend Donald Maclean, a member of the Cambridge ring of Soviet spies then being formed. Klugman had "spotted" and helped recruit John Cairncross, a brilliant scholarship winner from a poor Glasgow background, to the ring. Cornford was the son of Charles Darwin's granddaughter and a Trinity classics don. He had been a Marxist at Stowe School before he won an open scholarship to Trinity at age 17 in 1932.
The two visitors the leaders of the Cambridge Communist movement wanted Straight to become a member of the communist controlled Cambridge University Socialist Society. The controllers were directed by the British Communist Party, headquartered in King Street, London, which in turn took its orders from Moscow. His name, he was told, had been mentioned to them by comrades at the LSE. Straight had no hesitation in joining; he regarded it as a major turning point in his life. He went to society meetings and discussed issues with Klugman and Cornford, who set about ironing out what they believed to be his naivete concerning the class struggle. Straight was an eager, willing, and quick student He was passed from "A" to "B" then "C" contacts each successive person more important in the secret system-until March 18, 1935, four months after meeting them. Then he moved from being one of fifty avowed communists in the society to one of twelve students in the Trinity College "cell" or communist group. It was his introduction to the clandestine world; the cells kept quiet about their membership.
Cells were split into three groups. The first included those interested in communist ideology. The second worked openly for the party and carried green membership cards. The third group of "moles" was more sinister. They prepared themselves for influential posts in British life and later infiltrated the professions and government. Not even close friends or family were aware of their communist affiliations...
Several communists, including those at the Soviet Embassy in Kensington Gardens, the British party's headquarters in King Street, and many on the Cambridge campus, were now aware of Straight's potential. Reports filtered back to key recruiter Deutsch, who was orchestrating a trip to Russia for a group of young communists. He made sure Straight was to be included. The three-week trip was meant to give them a sanitized, controlled look at the "workers' paradise." The holiday was also a chance for Russian intelligence to assess each student's suitability for future recruitment. A list was passed on to Trinity's Charles Rycroft (later a distinguished psychiatrist) and John Madge, who organized the students to pay £15 each for the Intourist round-trip by steamer to Leningrad. Also on board the ship in August 1935 were Straight's Dartington chum, Michael Young; Brian Simon (another member of the Trinity cell and a future member of the British Communist Party); Charles Fletcher-Cooke, also at Trinity (then a Union radical, later a Tory member of Parliament); Christopher Mayhew (a future Labor minister and lord) and his friend, Derek Nenk, both of Oxford University; art academic and French tutor at Cambridge Anthony Blunt (a member of the university's growing ring); and his brother Wilfrid, an art teacher. The trip would build Straight's relationship with the tall, lean Anthony Blunt with the cutaway mouth and aloof demeanor.
The two had a link from 1935, the first year they met. They didn't fraternize much after hours. Blunt was a predatory homosexual, and Straight had hopes of being a hunter in the opposite camp. Blunt was a KGB recruiter, and Straight was intrigued by the secret communist milieu at the university, thus making himself available. Straight tried to make out that their backgrounds and circumstances were similar, but he was clutching at straws to explain away the ease of their relationships...
Blunt and Straight met for the last time in Blunt's rooms in New Court in mid-June 1937. He had cleared his desks and was disgruntled. The university would not be reinstating Blunt as a don. It meant that both were prematurely leaving an environment they loved. The Moscow Center had wanted Blunt to stay on recruiting the best and brightest for the cause. But his stubbornness in repeating in almost all his art analysis the communist dictum that art had to be socially useful (and then attempting to reinforce it with nonsensical deductions) had upset too many of the established academic hierarchy.
Blunt, however, still had to carry on as a recruiter for Burgess and Maly and his ultimate employers in Moscow. It was time for Straight to be introduced to the 32-year-old KGB control Arnold Deutsch. Straight, it was hoped, was ready for his first step into the demimonde of espionage for the cause.
Straight was nervous at the prospect of meeting his first major KGB contact. Blunt added to the drama by explaining that strict methods had to be followed before they made a rendezvous with Deutsch. A few days later they went to London, Straight in his car and Blunt by train.
Straight was instructed to make his way to a location on Oxford Street mid-morning. On the way, he felt excited, but there was also a sense of foreboding. What if he were followed and apprehended? Blunt had assured him that nothing would happen if they followed detailed procedures to avoid detection. Even if they were tailed, Blunt had explained, they were not giving the Russian anything, nor were they receiving written information. A meeting as such was not against the law; in any case, Blunt would have a cover story should anything happen. Despite his mentor's calm, Straight could not alleviate the fear of the unknown as he picked up Blunt near Oxford Circus.
It was crowded and a stiflingly hot day. Traffic was heavy, which was just what Blunt wanted. It would be more difficult to follow them. Straight was ordered on a circuitous route. Blunt monitored the side and rearview mirrors, watching for "watchers" - the name for M15 agents assigned to follow suspects. Blunt was aware that his art criticisms and communist sympathies may have been drawn to the attention of British intelligence. He could be tailed for a while just to see what his movements were now that his Cambridge days were over.
Straight was a more prominent target, especially with his recent support for Selassie. He had been marked down as a radical student to be watched since his LSE days. His post university activities in England would most likely also be of interest to British intelligence. It was, in fact, a reason for Moscow's pushing Straight to the United States.
After an hour's drive around the roads of London's western outskirts, they stopped at a roadhouse on the Great West Road where Heathrow is now located. They parked the car and were met by the solidly built, dark-haired Deutsch. He had become the senior controller for the Cambridge ring after Theodore Maly had been ordered back to Moscow during Stalin's purges.
Deutsch was introduced to Straight as "George." He suggested they go for a swim at a nearby public pool and have a drink and talk. Blunt and Straight sat in silence and watched as "George" went swimming in the crowded pool. After drying off his ample frame, he ordered beers and lit up a cigarette.
He looked Straight up and down. He did not seem interested as Blunt explained that Straight would be going to the United States. He would be I working in Washington, D.C., George was informed. His disinterest may have been because the new recruit would not be under his control. George was not like the urbane, cultured Hungarian Maly. His manner was gruff, and he did not choose to reason with his agents. He gave orders and expected results.
The agent complained about the heat and jumped in the pool again while the others waited. Later George started explaining tradecraft - the way an agent should behave when making contact, phoning, keeping appointments, avoiding a tail, and so on. Blunt would later write a book on procedures for British intelligence, which would also be used by their Russian counterparts. He had already been through the basics with the new recruit. Straight's attitude had moved from awe to surprise and disappointment at being treated in such an offhand and patronizing manner.
He left the meeting with Blunt feeling let down. This agent had not been the expected urbane individual full of verve and ideals. Straight thought he seemed more like a small-time smuggling operator than a representative of a new international order.") Blunt sensed his disappointment at the time and explained that the meeting was an administrative detail - a formality to establish contact and to see that the new recruit was acceptable. A brief assessment would be recorded, passed back to Moscow, and placed in a Russian intelligence vault.
Straight differs very much from people we have dealt with before. So far, he has been an active member of the party and constantly surrounded by his friends.
Yagoda was superseded in July 1936 by Nicolai Yezhov, the Secretary of the Central Committee, who was given full authority to purge the Secret Service.
If Yagoda had been ruthlessly oppressive, Yezhov was even more drastic in his measures. He not only appointed more than three hundred new heads of departments, executives and agents, but ordered a drastic purge of the overseas networks of the Soviet Secret Service such as had never been carried out before. It was an attempt, mainly inspired by Stalin, to ensure that the last of the old-time revolutionaries with independent views were liquidated. Stalin developed a phobia against the internationalist, idealist type of Communist and all answering to this description were ruthlessly expelled and destroyed. At the same time he also turned against the Jewish agent, equating him with the internationalist, and declaring again and again that a Russian Jew was a Jew first and a Russian second and that a Jewish Communist was merely another man to be shadowed and distrusted.
There were indeed certain parallels between Stalin and Hitler. Both mistrusted the Jews, both loathed internationalism, both were essentially nationalists of a particularly loathsome and chauvinistic kind. Each man was convinced that neither could survive without either winning the other as an ally, or fighting to the death. The knowledge that he could not trust other Western European nations drove Stalin to make a pact with Hitler, while the conviction that he could not defeat Stalin until he had conquered Europe forced Hitler to acquiesce in such a pact. In this war of nerves Stalin's will proved the stronger, but either way the Jews suffered.
Yet the truth is that until 1948 the Jews remained Russia's best agents. However much Stalin sought to destroy their influence, Hitler's highly publicised persecution of Jewry ensured that they remained the allies of international communism: many of them saw it as their only hope. In the United States especially the Jews helped to provide the best espionage machine that Russia possessed and as soon as one cell was destroyed another sprang up.