3 May In the annals of espionage, one name towers above all others: that of H. A. R. ” Kim” Philby, the ringleader of the legendary Cambridge spies. 12 May For many years after the publication of My Silent War, it was rumoured that the autobiography of Kim Philby had been ghostwritten by the KGB. More thoughts on Kim Philby’s My Silent War The Young Kim Philby: Soviet Spy and British Intelligence Officer University of Exeter Press, Exeter, UK,

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While academically interesting, this is a dry read.

And, of course, Philby was tooting his own horn to the extent his Soviet employer This is obviously must reading for anyone interested in this subject. Angleton, later chief of the Central Intelligence Agency ‘s CIA Counterintelligence Staffbecame suspicious of Philby when he failed to pass on information relating to a British agent executed by the Gestapo in Germany. She noted that they produced an extraordinary wealth of information on German war plans but next to nothing on the repeated question of British penetration of Soviet intelligence in either London or Moscow.

Burgess, who had been given a post as Second Secretary at the British Embassy, took up residence in the Philby family home and rapidly set about causing offence to all and sundry. Behind the inbred upper-class arrogance, the taste for adventure, lies the self-hate of a vain misfit for whom nothing will ever be worthy of his loyalty. This entailed responsibility for a network of undercover operatives in Madrid, Lisbon, Gibraltar and Tangier.

When the Germans threatened to overrun Paris inwhere she was then living, he arranged her escape to Britain. He was paid rubles a month and his family was not immediately able to join him in exile.


Kim Philby

The Phlby of a Spy 3. Upon his arrival in Moscow, Philby discovered that he was not a colonel in the KGB, as he had been led to believe.

In she returned to Maclean. Aileen Philby resented him and disliked his presence; Americans were offended by his “natural superciliousness” and “utter contempt for the whole pyramid of values, attitudes, and courtesies of the American way of life.

As previously noted, he perhaps understandably says nothing of one side of his work at all. We little lttle of what mh accomplished for his overt British employers, and almost nothing about what he did for his covert Soviet employers.

He said “It was a very dirty story—but after all our work does imply getting dirty hands from time to time but we do it for a cause that is not dirty in any way”. His method in introducing the many intelligence officers with whom he worked on both sides of the Atlantic is to wqr a couple of brief summary descriptive strokes that establish uniqueness, then put the person into interaction with others to add depth and complexity.

Commenting on his betrayal of the operation to secretly send thousands of Albanians back into their country to overthrow the Communist regimewhich led to many being killed, Philby tries to turn it to his credit, even saying that he helped prevent another World Silwnt. Though a convinced Communist, he had a strong humanistic streak. This book should have been a thrill a minute, but comes across almost as flat and passionless as a Wikipedia entry.

Philby has at any time betrayed the interests of his country, or to identify him with the so-called ‘Third Man’, if indeed there was one.

Kim Philby – Wikipedia

Nov 12, Phoenix rated it liked it Shelves: I questioned her about it but she would give me no details. He said that at the time of his recruitment as a spy there were no prospects of his being useful; he was instructed to make his way into the Secret Service, which took years, starting with journalism and building up contacts in the establishment.


Constantly boasting of his prowess against the rival powers whom he has betrayed.

Open Preview See a Problem? An interesting read, all told, though much slent Philby himself impossible to pin down. His Russian Widow’s Sad Story”.

Larger numbers were landed by sea and air under Operation Valuablewhich continued untilincreasingly under the influence of the newly formed CIA. He had the policy of never confessing—a document in his own handwriting was dismissed as a forgery. The situation in Washington was tense. Eighteen young men were parachuted into Eastern Europe and, thanks to Philby, were never heard from again.

He later wrote philvy Throughout his book, he delivers tirades of scathing and disparaging remarks against the likes of J. From PhilvyMaclean had been the prime suspect in the investigation into the Embassy leak.

However, this is a very small part of this book. This first hand source is an exciting read for Cold War enthusiasts, slient should be entered into advisedly.

My Silent War by Kim Philby |

The fact that it’s described in such matter-of-fact tones makes it all the more so. US News and World Report. Burgess’s presence was problematic for Philby, yet it was potentially dangerous for Philby to leave him unsupervised.