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CIA gives Germany list of 50,000 ex-Stasi spies

The people on the list were not previously identified as Stasi spies and some may have even retained senior positions in government after Germany's reunification.
CIA to unmask 50,000 ex-Stasi spies
Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH (DPA), 7 July 2003

BERLIN - Documents supplied by the United States to Germany may unmask 50,000 former East German Stasi spies - some of whom may still belong to parliament, a report said Monday. The documents from the Stasi - East Germany's hated secret police - were obtained by the American CIA during the chaotic collapse of East Germany in 1989-1990.

A Berliner Zeitung newspaper report says the CIA has provided the German government with a list of about 50,000 German nationals who served as Stasi spies since the 1950s. People on this list were never identified as Stasi spies following the 1990 German reunification and in some cases have may have kept senior positions in government, the report said.

Marianne Brithler, a former East German dissident who heads the government agency administering former Stasi files, says the new data will be used to check the background of members of parliament and state employees. The CIA obtained the documents in an undercover mission dubbed Operation Rosenholz (rosewood) which is still shrouded in mystery.

Unconfirmed reports say the CIA paid USD 1.5 million in cash to a renegade agent in Russia for the trove of documents.

Lib Dem peer accused of being a 'Stasi agent of influence'
David Leigh, The Guardian, 11 June 2003

The historian Anthony Glees, in what will prove either to be a reputation-making or a reputation-busting book released this week, is accusing a senior Liberal Democrat politician and fellow-academic, John Roper, of having been an "agent of influence" for the East German communist secret police, the Stasi.

Lord Roper rejects the charge indignantly. The 68-year-old former Labour and SDP MP says he was engaged in building bridges with East Germany in the 1980s as part of a Foreign Office-approved policy of thawing relations.

He was deceived, he says, about the background of an undercover Stasi officer he employed as a research fellow when he was director of studies at Chatham House. Friends of Lord Roper describe Professor Glees as having "a chip on his shoulder" and looking for a succes de scandale.

Lord Roper says Prof Glees appears to be promoting the philosophy of the Iraq arch-hawk, Richard Perle, now an influential figure in George Bush's Washington circle, but then a dedicated cold warrior who argued that contacts with Soviet bloc regimes only served to give sustenance to the enemy.

See Also: Uncovering the Scots academics who spied for the Stasi

THE STASI FILES - East Germany's Secret Operations Against Britain
Anthony Glees, Free Press, 2003