The Mitrokhin Archive: Two is out and bits of the Third World are quivering like an underset jelly. (For the Allende story, go here.)
Comrade Malik has the lowdown on the former KGB man’s India revelations:
One year after he died, the ghost of Vasili Mitrokhin, former senior archivist at the KGB, has returned to haunt the core of the UPA—the Congress and the Communists.
Just released in London, The Mitrokhin Archive II: The KGB and the World (Penguin/Allen Lane) claims fairly sensational disclosures about the former Soviet secret service’s operations in India.
The KGB, the book alleges, routinely bribed Left and Congress politicians, including ministers in Indira Gandhi’s government, bought secrets from them, paid them retainers. Making India, in the words of KGB general Olef Kalugnin, “a model of KGB infiltration of a Third World government…It seemed like the entire country was for sale”.
Comrade Bardhan thinks that British and US intelligence are behind the book. (Oh yeah. Good old MI5 and the CIA, funding ex-KGB guys so well that the US Embassy Mitrokhin first approached actually turned him away, assuming he was a crank.)
“We survive on people’s money. I have never smelt roubles. I came to the party at the age of 15 and for the past 65 years been serving it,” he said.
On the book, he said, “Mitrokhin who stole the archive” is not alive to verify the claims but it is clear that someone in England — Christopher Andrew, historian at Corpus Christi, Cambridge, and Mitrokhin’s collaborator — wants to earn money through it.
The Congress denies everything, damn it, everything:
“To state that Mrs Gandhi became Prime Minister because of the manipulation by any foreign intelligence agency is preposterous. The truth is that Indira Gandhi became Prime Miniter in 1966, 1971 and 1980 because of the love, affection and trust the people of India reposed in her,” the AICC said in a press release.
Andrew and Mitrokhin report suitcases full of KGB money going into the Prime Minister’s residence, but don’t seem to think she knew about the origins of the cash. However, they corroborate a Very Senior Source who says the suitcases were never returned. What the Babu would like to know is, what did Herself do with all them suitcases? And were they Louis Vuitton? Or just the GUM store brand?
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