MOSCOW — George Blake, a former British intelligence officer who was employed as a double agent for the Soviet Union and handed a number of the most coveted Western secrets to Moscow, has expired in Russia.
Russia’s Foreign Intelligence Service, called SVR, declared his departure Saturday in a statement, that did not offer any particulars.
As a dual agent, Blake subjected a Western strategy to eavesdrop on Soviet communications via a subterranean tunnel to East Berlin. Also, he unmasked dozens of British representatives in Soviet bloc nations in Eastern Europe, a few of whom were implemented. Blake has lived in Russia because of his bold escape from a British prison in 1966 and has been given the status of Russian intelligence colonel.
Britain believed Blake for a traitor, but the guy himself agreed with this assessment and stated he had never really”felt” British.
“To betray, you first must belong. I never slipped,” he explained.
Produced in the Netherlands,” Blake combined British intelligence during World War II. He had been posted to Korea as soon as the war there awakened in 1950 and has been arrested by the Communist north.
In an announcement issued in 2017 throughout the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service, Blake highlighted he decided to change sides after viewing civilians massacred from the”American military system.”
“I understood back then that such battles are deadly dangerous for the whole humankind and forced the important choice in my own life — to collaborate with Soviet intelligence and also for free to help safeguard peace on earth,” Blake explained.
At a 2012 meeting with the Russian government daily Rossiyskaya Gazeta, Blake shared a few particulars of his cloak-and-dagger experiences, such as meetings with a Soviet liaison at East Berlin. He explained that after a month he’d have a train to East Berlin, be certain he was not being followed closely, and proceed by car to a covert apartment where he and his contact could have a conversation followed by a glass of Soviet-made sparkling wine.
He had been detained on spying charges from Britain and sentenced to 42 years. In October 1966he left a daring escape with assistance from many people he met while in custody.
Blake spent two weeks hiding at his helper’s location and was subsequently driven across Europe into East Berlin within a wooden box attached below a vehicle.
His British spouse, whom he left behind together with their three kids, divorced him and he married a Soviet girl and they had a boy. He had been feted as a hero, decorated with high medals, and also given a country home outside Moscow.
From the Soviet Union, Blake maintained contact with other British dual agents. He stated he met regularly with Donald Maclean and Kim Philby, members of those so-called Cambridge Five, and he explained he and Maclean were especially close.
Blake stated that he adapted well to life in Russia and after joked in a meeting with Russian intelligence officers which he is just like a”foreign-made automobile that adapted nicely to Russian streets.”
“He created a invaluable contribution to ensuring strategic parity and maintaining peace,” Putin said in his telegram of condolences.
Blake mentioned in his 2017 announcement that Russia is now his”moment motherland,” and thanked SVR officers due to their friendship and understanding. He explained that Russian intelligence officials have a mission to”save the planet in a circumstance once the threat of atomic war and the consequent self-destruction of humanity happen to be put on the schedule by reckless politicians.”