Kidnap City: Cold War Berlin

Hardcover | September 1, 2002

byArthur Lee Smith

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After more than 50 years, some of the secrets behind the post-war kidnappings in Berlin remain classified. Following Second World War, West Berlin residents found themselves as prime targets for kidnapping by communist agents. Lurid press accounts of these abductions left Berliners frightened and intimidated. The central connection of American intelligence agencies (CIC, CIA) to most of these cases, however, was not well known at the time. Delving into these various kidnapping cases, Smith discovers a distinct profile for the abductees. Almost all were former residents of East Germany and, as such, had an intelligence value for the Americans. This connection in turn made them prime targets for Soviet and East German intelligence units. Examination of the climate of fear in West Berlin reveals the complexity of politics in the early Cold War. Many targeted individuals had Nazi pasts--a factor that the Americans took great pains to conceal. At one point, the United States even risked a diplomatic rupture with West Germany when American authorities went so far as to block prosecutions of a German citizen in German courts for aiding in the kidnapping of a number of West Berliners. Exactly why Washington was so willing to go to extreme lengths in this case remains unknown, but Smith's research sheds new light on the clash between East and West in one troubled city.

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From the Publisher

After more than 50 years, some of the secrets behind the post-war kidnappings in Berlin remain classified. Following Second World War, West Berlin residents found themselves as prime targets for kidnapping by communist agents. Lurid press accounts of these abductions left Berliners frightened and intimidated. The central connection of ...

Format:HardcoverDimensions:216 pages, 9.9 × 6.2 × 0.85 inPublished:September 1, 2002Publisher:Greenwood PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0313323615

ISBN - 13:9780313323614

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"Arthur L. Smith's well-written monograph covering Berlin in the 1945-1961 era is an interesting contribution to this ongoing process....[S]hould find a ready audience among scholars and students who seek a better understanding of American, Soviet, and East German intelligence agency activities in a city divided by fear and suspicion."-German Studies Review