The consistently excellent Washington Post Book World ran a review of Comrade J: Untold Secrets of A Russian Spy in America After the Cold War by Pete Earley. Clunky subtitle aside, this is a fascinating view into the world of Sergei Tretyakov, a Russian spy who came to New York in 2000 to work for his country but later flipped, telling his secrets to the CIA and FBI.

David Wise, in his review, writes:

Tretyakov, who had been assigned to the Russian mission at the United Nations since 1995 and to Ottawa before that, gave the FBI 5,000 secret SVR cables and more than 100 Russian intelligence reports, according to one U.S. intelligence official cited by Earley. Tretyakov apparently first tried to defect around 1997 but agreed to remain as an "agent in place," passing secrets to the FBI until October 2000, when he vanished from a Russian residential compound in the Bronx with his wife, daughter and cat. Four months later, the United States acknowledged his defection, but Comrade J (the title is drawn from the KGB's code name for Tretyakov, Comrade Jean) is the first account of his espionage career. "It is one of our biggest success stories," puffed the unnamed U.S. intelligence official."
The case of Tretyakov reminds of one Anatoli Golitsyn, the KGB defector who, in works like New Lies for Old and The Perestroika Deception, alleged that the KGB had infiltrated governments around the world, and had morphed to become a sort of intra-national secret society of spies - the Freemasons with a Slavic accent, if you will. Comrade J is not nearly so extreme, and Tretyakov is perhaps only another spy who switched allegiances, but both stories fascinating nevertheless, especially with an old KGB hand like Vladimir Putin sitting in the Kremlin.

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