When the Russians first recruited Jack Barsky as a young East German graduate student, he was a true believer in the Communist cause and was ready to serve undercover in the U.S. But ten years after his mission began, the KGB ordered him to return, and he realized his allegiance had changed. Determined to outwit his KGB bosses, Barsky decided to stay in the U.S. with the people he loved. In this fascinating memoir, the former KGB agent tells the story of his turbulent inner world, the secret life he lived for years, and the discovery that radically changed his future. Hardcover.
One decision can end everything . . . or lead to unlikely redemption.
Millions watched the CBS 60 Minutes special on Jack Barsky in 2015. Now, in this fascinating memoir, the Soviet KGB agent tells his story of gut-wrenching choices, appalling betrayals, his turbulent inner world, and the secret life he lived for years without getting caught.
On October 8, 1978, a Canadian national by the name of William Dyson stepped off a plane at OHare International Airport and proceeded toward Customs and Immigration.
Two days later, William Dyson ceased to exist.
The identity was a KGB forgery, used to get one of their owna young, ambitious East German agentinto the United States.
The plan succeeded, and the spys new identity was born: Jack Barsky. He would work undercover for the next decade, carrying out secret operations during the Cold War years . . . until a surprising shift in his allegiance challenged everything he thought he believed.
Deep Undercover will reveal the secret life of this man without a country and tell the story no one ever expected him to tell.
The making of an undercover agent spying on behalf of the Soviet Union. Born Albrecht Dittrich in 1949 in East Germany, Barsky recounts his meticulously prepared career as a KGB spy, his mission as an embedded agent in the United States, and his subsequent coming out of the cold in the late 1980s. All his life, Barsky enjoyed sterling accomplishments, from winning the prestigious Karl Marx Scholarship in 1970 to graduating to an assured career as a professor in chemistry; later, at age 40, he graduated as the valedictorian from Baruch College in New York. Early on, as a good Young Pioneer and member of the Communist Party, the stoical, determined youth vowed that if he ever got the chance, he would somehow contribute to the destruction of the evil forces of fascism and capitalism. That opportunity arrived with his recruitment by a KGB agent, and he agreed to give up his chemistry career in order to be trained in Russian espionage under the code name Dieter. Aside from his training in Berlin in the rules of conspiracy, including mastering shortwave radio and Morse code, cryptography, secret writing, photography, dead-drop operations, and surveillance detection, Barsky had to undergo rigorous instruction in Englishin Moscow, no less. After two years, he was ready to embed in the West, first to Canada and then to New York, where he worked as a bike messenger while gradually acquiring the necessary documents for permanent residency. As an illegal, he assumed the identity of a certain Jack Barsky, who had died in 1955. Yet Barskys American life, including a job at an insurance company and a wife and child (another family had to be left in Germany), was too good to be true; when his identity was compromised, he boldly defied KBG orders to return, slipping under the radar thanks largely to the collapse of the Soviet Union. An intriguing inside look at international espionage.