The Happy Traitor – The Life of Soviet Spy George Blake

  I talk with acclaimed author and journalist Simon Kuper, has written The Happy Traitor, the story of British spy and Soviet Union double agent George Blake, the last major British traitor of the Cold War. A deeply human read, wonderfully written, on the foibles of a fascinating, flawed, treacherous and sort of likeable character.’ … Read more

China 1949

    The events of 1949 in China reverberated across the world and throughout the rest of the century. That tumultuous year saw the dramatic collapse of Chiang Kai-shek’s ‘pro-Western’ Nationalist government, overthrown by Mao Zedong and his communist armies, and the foundation of the People’s Republic of China. I talk with author Graham Hutchings … Read more

From Foe to Friend – the British Army in Cold War Germany

    Germany has been at the heart of the British Army’s story since 1945. After the Second World War, the Army helped rebuild a devastated and divided nation. It provided protection during the Cold War and later used Germany as a base from which to deploy troops across the world.  Foe to Friend is … Read more

Book giveaway – A Question of Time

James Stejskal was my guest in our Special Forces Berlin episode. He has now written a fiction book based on his experiences. Berlin, 1979. When the CIA’s most valuable spy is compromised, the Agency realizes it does not have the capability to bring him to safety. If he cannot evade the dreaded East German security … Read more

On Her Majesty’s Nuclear Submarine Service

    Commodore Eric Thompson MBE is the author of the book “On Her Majesty’s Nuclear Service. He is a career nuclear submarine officer who served from the first days of the Polaris missile boats until after the end of the Cold War. He joined the Navy in the last days of Empire, made his … Read more

Détente – the chance to end the Cold War

    Today we speak with Richard Crowder, the author of “Détente – the chance to end the Cold War”. Help support the podcast by buying the book here Between 1968 and 1975, there was a subtle thawing of relations between East and West, for which Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev coined the name Détente. The … Read more

Guy Burgess and the Cambridge Five Spy Ring

  Guy Burgess was the most important, complex, and fascinating of The Cambridge Spies, brilliant young men recruited in the 1930s to betray their country to the Soviet Union. An engaging and charming companion to many, an unappealing, utterly ruthless manipulator to others, Burgess rose through academia, the BBC, the Foreign Office, MI5 and MI6, … Read more

A Childhood under the eye of the Secret Police

      At 2 a.m. on 10 March 1983, 12 year old Carmen Bugan was home alone after her father had left for Bucharest. That afternoon, Carmen returned from school to find secret police in her living room. Her father’s protest against the regime had changed her life for ever. This is her story. … Read more

Cold War Royal Navy submarine missions

    Today we speak with Ian Ballantyne, the author of “Hunter Killers”, also known as “Undersea Warriors” in the United States. Hunter Killers’ tells the incredible, true inside story of the Royal Navy’s Cold War beneath the waves. Buy the book and support the podcast on the link below. We talk about the forgotten … Read more