Yuri Bezmenov, the son of a high-ranking Soviet officer, was a member of the elite propaganda arm of the KGB, known as the Novasti Press Agency. One of his assignments was to accompany journalists visiting the Soviet Union to make sure they did not discover the truth about Soviet life. After becoming disillusioned with the oppressive system, he escaped to the West.
In this interview from 1984 conducted by G. Edward Griffin, Mr. Bezmenov tells how the Soviets used propaganda against their own citizens; how he hoodwinked American journalists into publishing Soviet propaganda, how slave laborers are concealed from foreign visitors, and how he escaped to the West posing as an American hippie. Includes many photographs brought with him on microfilm at the time of his escape.
Yuri Alexandrovich Bezmenov, also known as Tomas David Schuman, was a journalist for RIA Novosti and a former KGB informant from the Soviet Union who defected to Canada.
At the age of 17, Bezmenov entered the Institute of Oriental Languages, a part of Moscow State University—which was under the direct control of the KGB and the Communist Central Committee. In addition to languages, Bezmenov studied history, literature, and music. During his second year, Bezmenov sought to look like a person from India; his teachers encouraged this because graduates of the school were employed as diplomats, foreign journalists, or spies.
As a Soviet student, he was also required to take compulsory military training in which he taught how to play “strategic war games” using the maps of foreign countries, as well as how to interrogate prisoners of war.
After being assigned to a station in India, Bezmenov eventually grew to love the people and culture of India, while, at the same time, he began to resent the KGB-sanctioned oppression of intellectuals who dissented from Moscow’s policies. He decided to defect to the West. Bezmenov is best remembered for his pro-American, anti-communist lectures and books from the 1980s.
The KGB (КГБ) is the commonly used acronym for the Russian Комитет государственной безопасности (Komitet gosudarstvennoy bezopasnosti or Committee for State Security). It was the national security agency of the Soviet Union from 1954 until 1991, and was the premier internal security, intelligence, and secret police organization during that time. Most of the KGB archives remain classified.
Since breaking away from Georgia de facto in the early 1990s with Russian help, South Ossetia established its own KGB (keeping this unreformed name). The State Security Committee of the Republic of Belarus currently uses the Russian name KGB.
Also known as Deception Was My Job
Part 1: Life under Soviet Collectivism
Part 2: Propaganda and Mind Control
Part 3: Cultural Subversion and Escape