ASIO survelliance photograph of KGB agents Geronity Lazovik and Ivan Stenin in 1971. Image source: Australian Financial Review

Official ASIO history says it was penetrated by foreign spies

25 October 2016

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Professor of International Security & Intelligence Studies

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An official history of the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation has conceded it was penetrated by Soviet agents during the latter half of the Cold War, confirming suspicions held for decades about why the domestic spy agency struggled against Communist targets.

The Secret Cold War, The Official History of ASIO, 1975-1989, says that the KGB decided to target Australian intelligence agencies when the two countries resumed diplomatic relations five years after the Petrov Affair in 1954.

“It now appears evident … that they succeeded,” the book’s penultimate chapter says. “Thousands of hours of covert surveillance aimed at exposing Soviet espionage operations had been for naught because of the penetration of the Organisation.”

Read full article Official ASIO history says it was penetrated by foreign spies published in the Australian Financial Review.

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