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Customer Review

on 29 October 2007
Orlov's book is an illuminating account of his days as a Soviet counter-intelligence official during the Russian revolution, in the Ukraine during the Soviet-Polish war, and as a Soviet agent working for the Republican government during the Spanish civil war (including a first-person account organising the transfer of the Spanish Central Bank's gold reserves to the USSR for "safe keeping"). The level of detail he offers about counter-intelligence operations (and his exposition of the general principles of this work) is superb.

In addition, outside the narrative, in Appendix Two, Orlov presents an intriguing circumstantial case for the hypothesis that Stalin worked as an informant for the Okhrana (the Tsar's security service) during much of his early revolutionary career. This section alone more than justifies the purchase price.
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