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The Resource Best of enemies : the last great spy story of the Cold War, Gus Russo and Eric Dezenhall

Best of enemies : the last great spy story of the Cold War, Gus Russo and Eric Dezenhall

Label
Best of enemies : the last great spy story of the Cold War
Title
Best of enemies
Title remainder
the last great spy story of the Cold War
Statement of responsibility
Gus Russo and Eric Dezenhall
Creator
Contributor
Author
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
In 1978 CIA maverick Jack Platt and KGB agent Gennady Vasilenko were new arrivals on the Washington, DC intelligence scene, with Jack working out of the CIA's counterintelligence office and Gennady out of the Soviet Embassy. Both men, already notorious iconoclasts within their respective agencies, were assigned to seduce the other into betraying his country in the urgent final days of the Cold War. Instead the men ended up becoming the best of friends. Russo and take us behind this friendship that never should have happened: a story full of treachery, darkly comic misunderstandings, bureaucratic inanity, the Russian Mafia, and landmark intelligence breakthroughs. -- adapted from publisher info
Member of
Pace
Tone
Writing style
Review
  • In this real-life thriller, Russo (Live by the Sword) and Dezenhall (Glass Jaw) recount the relationship between legendary CIA officer Jack Platt and KGB officer Gennady Semyovich Vasilenko, who remained loyal to their countries while forging a deep personal and professional connection. The authors base their story on extensive interviews with the two protagonists and others who served in the intelligence community, as well as unclassified information regarding CIA-KGB encounters during the Cold War. The two officers were at the center of many important Cold War intelligence confrontations, culminating in the CIA and FBI hunt for a mole who virtually destroyed American intelligence capacity in Russia. Platt was instrumental in the 2001 capture of Robert Hanssen, the most notorious internal spy in U.S. history, and Vasilenko was wrongfully imprisoned by the Russians as a result. Vasilenko’s imprisonment and torture highlights the brutality and corruption that makes the modern Russian judicial system a fitting heir to the Soviet gulag. In an ironic twist, Vasilenko—a KGB agent who had been loyal to the U.S.S.R. and Russia throughout his career—was traded to the U.S. in exchange for captured Russian spies in 2010. This is an informative and exciting history for the general reader and for the espionage expert alike. Agent: Kris Dahl, ICM, and Jeff Silberman, Folio Literary Management. (Oct.)
			 --Staff (Reviewed 08/27/2018) (Publishers Weekly, vol 265, issue 35, p)
  • /* Starred Review */ Russo (Supermob) and Dezenhall (Spinning Dixie) weave an engrossing tale of CIA officer Jack Platt and KGB agent Gennady Vasilenko, who became confidants. Both tried to flip the other to their respective side, and when they realized this couldn't happen, they maintained regular contact, endearing themselves to each other. Bonded by outsized personalities and rebellious streaks that pushed the limits within bureaucratic apparatuses of the CIA and KGB, the two created a friendship that here is woven through the larger contexts of the past four decades of American-Russian (Soviet) relations and the actions and reactions of the KGB-CIA. This book adds knowledge to recent works such as Jack Barksy's Deep Undercover and Eva Dillon's Spies in the Family. VERDICT Highly recommended for those who miss the show The Americans and others who immerse themselves in intelligence intrigue. --Jacob Sherman (Reviewed 09/15/2018) (Library Journal, vol 143, issue 15, p64)
  • A rollicking tale of Cold War espionage focused on the improbable bond between a macho CIA agent and his KGB counterpart. Russo (Supermob: How Sidney Korshak and His Criminal Associates Became America's Hidden Power Brokers, 2006, etc.) and Dezenhall (Glass Jaw: A Manifesto for Defending Fragile Reputations in an Age of Instant Scandal, 2014, etc.) offer a well-researched account, intersecting with the CIA's betrayal by Aldrich Ames and Robert Hanssen. The institutional pursuit of these turncoats, who caused "a staggering amount of damage," involved many of the principals here. Previously, in both Washington and Moscow in the 1970s and '80s, spies with diplomatic covers often became entangled in each other's recruitment schemes. Rakish, outgoing KGB officer Gennady Vasilenko became involved in the D.C. diplomats' amateur athletics, making him a prime target of CIA officer Jack Platt, a larger-than-life, hard-living agency tactician. While neither agreed to "cross over" to provide their country's secrets, they developed a genuine friendship. "Both men were patriotic risk takers," write the authors. "Both loved their chosen professions and had no respect for the desk jockeys." Although Platt participated in an operation to "turn" Vasilenko, he respected the Russian's determination to remain loyal. But KGB suspicions of Vasilenko's rule-bending ethos prevailed, and he was lured home, imprisoned, and expelled from the service. When the Soviet Union collapsed, his American connections enabled him to pursue business opportunities with Platt, as did many ex-Russian spies. However, the 2001 arrest of Hanssen led Vasilenko's erstwhile colleagues to target him; he was arrested a few years later and again imprisoned over old allegations of collusion. Following five years of often brutal treatment, Platt's CIA colleagues added Vasilenko to an exchange for the Russian "illegals" notoriously arrested in 2010 after years of deep-cover spying, finally permitting him a bittersweet American retirement. Russo and Dezenhall aptly capture this complex narrative, based on its protagonists' long-classified recollections, though the focus on their outsized personalities can be repetitive. An unusual, entertaining story of steadfast friendship amid governmental treachery. (Kirkus Reviews, September 1, 2018)
Biography type
collective biography
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
10738924
Cataloging source
DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Russo, Gus
Dewey number
327.1247073092/2
Illustrations
  • illustrations
  • plates
Index
index present
LC call number
UB271.U5
LC item number
R87 2018
Literary form
non fiction
Nature of contents
bibliography
http://library.link/vocab/relatedWorkOrContributorName
Dezenhall, Eric
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Platt, Jack
  • Vasilenko, Gennady
  • United States
  • Soviet Union
  • Spies
  • Spies
  • Spies
  • Espionage
  • Espionage
  • Male friendship
Target audience
adult
http://bibfra.me/vocab/lite/titleRemainder
the last great spy story of the Cold War
Label
Best of enemies : the last great spy story of the Cold War, Gus Russo and Eric Dezenhall
Instantiates
Publication
Copyright
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references (pages 319-321) and index
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Contents
Apprentice spies -- All roads lead to Washington -- Contact -- Musketeers -- The IOC -- The quisling -- Softly, softly, catchee monkey -- Havana takedown -- Sasha -- An old enemy -- A second reunion -- Going public -- A heavy box of caviar -- Calm before the storm -- You don't know me -- The Gulag redux -- Rest: the red button -- End games
Dimensions
24 cm
Edition
First edition.
Extent
vi, 342 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates
Isbn
9781538761311
Lccn
2017056747
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Other control number
40028645374
Other physical details
illustrations (chiefly color)
System control number
  • on1019841610
  • (OCoLC)1019841610
Label
Best of enemies : the last great spy story of the Cold War, Gus Russo and Eric Dezenhall
Publication
Copyright
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references (pages 319-321) and index
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Contents
Apprentice spies -- All roads lead to Washington -- Contact -- Musketeers -- The IOC -- The quisling -- Softly, softly, catchee monkey -- Havana takedown -- Sasha -- An old enemy -- A second reunion -- Going public -- A heavy box of caviar -- Calm before the storm -- You don't know me -- The Gulag redux -- Rest: the red button -- End games
Dimensions
24 cm
Edition
First edition.
Extent
vi, 342 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates
Isbn
9781538761311
Lccn
2017056747
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Other control number
40028645374
Other physical details
illustrations (chiefly color)
System control number
  • on1019841610
  • (OCoLC)1019841610

Library Locations

    • James City County LibraryBorrow it
      7770 Croaker Road, Williamsburg, VA, 23188, US
      37.377573 -76.770995
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