As any real agent knows, inconspicuous accessories are some of the most important gear a spy can carry. Now, who can truly say they've never dreamed of owning a gun disguised as lipstick? James and Jane Bonds of the world, eat your heart out.
Michael Swanwick (guest author) has received the Nebula, Theodore Sturgeon, World Fantasy and Hugo Awards. He has written nine novels, 150 short stories, and countless flash fictions. His latest novel, Chasing the Phoenix, is available from Tor Books. FloggingBabel.blogspot.com.
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During the post-Stalin period, cultural institutions were given a new life and, fueled by increased cultural import, artistic experimentation grew dramatically throughout the country. This growth was particularly apparent in Czech film poster design, lasting even past the Prague Spring and up to the fall of the USSR. Take a look at some works by our favorite graphic designers of the era.
"There is more power in blue jeans and rock and roll than the entire Red Army” --Régis Debray
Want to learn the art of Cold War espionage? Need to guard some Very Important Secrets? Wow, do we have a video for you!
Microdot encryption, a spy favorite, refers the reduction of a text or an image to the size of a small disc, often the size and shape of a typographical dot, such as a period or the tittle of a lower-case j or i. This encryption technique was primarily used to prevent detection by unintended recipients, particularly when conveying sensitive or classified materials.
Assassination Umbrellas, Exploding Paint Sets…and Dead Drop Rats? More Strange Declassified Spy Gear from the Cold War
Of the many devices these spies used, some are certainly more *creative* than others. Take a look at some of the stranger spy gear we've come across in our #ColdWitch research journey
Who was Horace Pile? For a humble Australian electronics components salesman, he made a surprising number of visits to the Weapons Research Establishment (WRE) at Salisbury. Could he have been one of the leading Soviet intelligence operatives in Australia?
Soviet radio jamming couldn't keep Soviets from jamming to western broadcasts.
After years of taking striking photos of Rromani people, Josef Koudelka stood before the tanks during the 1968 Soviet invasion of Prague. He smuggled out his images, which circulated the globe while he fled to Britain. Here's a look at his most poignant and powerful shots.
If you thought James Bond had cool tech toys, get a load of some of this stuff.
The Soviet Union didn’t just imagine a worker’s utopia on Earth—they also hoped the great communist experiment would eventually reach other worlds as well.
Most of the visitors to Salyut 6, the Soviet Union's International Space Station, came from smaller Communist nations sympathetic to the Soviet ideal. Yet to much surprise, the first of these visitors, Vladimir Remek, launched in March 1978, was from the most unlikely country: Czechoslovakia.