Agayants, Ivan Ivanovich

   An experienced intelligence officer, who served both as an illegal and under diplomatic cover, Agayants served as rezident (chief of intelligence) in Paris following World War II. Agayants established networks of agents in France from among men and women who had began their service during the war in the “Lemoyne” and “Henri” groups. Many of these agents served out of deep ideological commitment and had been recruited as agents from the French Communist Party. Agayants also was successful in running agents within the French counterintelligence service. He was so scornful of French counterintelligence that he referred to the service as a “prostitute” in a lecture to new officers. Agayants was picked by KGB Chair Aleksandr Shelepin in the 1950s to establish Service D within the First Chief Directorate to rebuild the service’s active measures capacity. Agayants concentrated Service D on finding ways to divide the United States from its NATO allies, defame politicians seen as anti-Soviet, and link West German politicians to the worst aspects of Nazism. In 1962, for example, Service D spread rumors about then German Defense Minister Franz Joseph Straus, aimed at weakening his position within the German government.

Historical dictionary of Russian and Soviet Intelligence. . 2014.

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