How easy did you find it to capture Kims voice?I spent so long with his letters and they gave me such an insight into the expressions he used, the way he spoke, how he flipped between being tender and reflective and witty and scathing, and his very English obsession with the weather. It was bad enough with Kim and the Cambridge spies showing up the British establishment, but the idea that this foreign Jewish woman might run rings around men in positions of authority, perhaps that was embarrassing for them. Im conscious that his story belongs to different people in different ways, within our family and also more widely. They even had a dacha a country cottage 20 miles from Moscow where the children could swim, fish, bicycle and forage for mushrooms. He had got afraid that I would leave, and hidden the boot.". He had friends, a wife; he indulged himself in a culture he loved the concerts, the ballet, the galleries; he travelled to Cuba, East Berlin, around the Soviet Union, and spent weekends at his beloved dacha. Area of responsibility extended to include North African and Italian espionage. 1929Enters Trinity College, Cambridge. Her fourth novel, Edith and Kim, tells the linked stories of her grandfather and Edith Tudor-Hart, a Jewish photojournalist born in Vienna, who studied at the Bauhaus, married an Englishman, worked as a Soviet agent in London and introduced Kim to his Russian handler. The next day she notified the British Consul in Geneva. The boys told a child they met on a beach that the photos he had taken could not be forwarded to them as we are going away and we dont know where we are going. And here he was struck by disappointment, brought to tears. He would say we and our when speaking of the Soviet Union and defended his adopted countrys brutal crushing of the Hungarian Uprising in 1956 an event that disgusted many Left-wing supporters back in the UK. A few days after her return to Switzerland, she told her mother she had run into an old friend in the local market and hed invited her and the children to stay with him for the weekend in his villa at the other end of Lake Geneva. Philby's less attractive personal qualities were matched by a charm to which many of his MI6 colleagues succumbed. "Kim believed in a just society and devoted his whole life to communism. No doubt your grandfather would have disapproved of the sharp contrasts in present-day Russia, he said. Rufina Pukhova, his Russian-Polish wife, said Philby struggled to control his drinking by downing only two glasses of cognac a night and then handing her the bottle to hide. birth date: 1912-01-01. birth place: Ambala. The two men said very little and the interview lasted barely five minutes. Indeed, when the leading Russian writer Genrikh Borovik was given access to Kims unseen KGB file in 1994 six years after his death the extent to which the Russians mistrusted him became clear. The Philby talent for putting on an act has been inherited by Charlotte, in a sense: she worked in theatre as a child, training with Anna Scher, whose radical Islington theatre group has spotted such talent as Kathy Burke and Phil Daniels. document.getElementById( "ak_js_1" ).setAttribute( "value", ( new Date() ).getTime() ); The Philby case has always fascinated me. Eleanor Kearns was born in Seattle in 1914. She sensed that the Macleans marriage was a difficult one again, with Donald on occasion still getting hopelessly drunk. "He once even said that it was the easiest way to bring life to an end. He believed in freedom of speech and thought that Stalinism and all that were temporary and obviously, the outcome proved otherwise. He wasnt one to care what others thought: Never be boring, and dont be afraid of offending people was one of the last things he told me before he died. She was an object of both pity and fascination, and to get away from it all, she moved from their house on the Kent-Surrey border to Switzerland, with her mother. Kim Philby met his first wife the Jewess, Litzi Friedman in Vienna, and it was Friedman, a dyed-in-the-wool communist, who convinced Philby to become a fellow KGB . Many of the street names have changed since the collapse of the Soviet Union. After five years of silence, communications were re-established with family and friends. n ADAPTED from A Spy Named Orphan by Roland Philipps, to be published by The Bodley Head on April 26 at 20. Philby spied on his poor wife Aileen, the mother of his children His passage up to the highest levels of MI6 was so swift and easy that from time to time his Soviet controllers worried he must. Philby had defected to the Soviet Union from Beirut in 1963, and was treated with respect, but felt isolated. 1957Aileen Furse, Philbys second wife, dies. Create a free website or blog at John Philby, who has died aged 65, was the eldest son of the Russian spy Kim Philby, unmasked in 1963 as a double agent and the notorious Third Man in the Cambridge spy ring of the 1930s. The spy who loved us: what Kim Philby's personal letters revealed about his mind The double-agent's granddaughter, Charlotte Philby, on the correspondence of a man who betrayed his country. His eldest son was my father, John who was himself a 19-year-old art student in 1963 when he first learnt of Kims espionage; stepping off a ferry on the Isle of Wight, he was met by a billboard stating that Kim was a wanted man. I turn left, according to my map, away from Kims local grocery, where a creature of habit hed collect his daily supply of bread and whatever fruit and vegetables were available. At the sight of our car, the men leap from their posts, saluting and buzzing the electric gates; one jumps into the front seat and calls out instructions as we roll off again. Slowly but surely, he was turning himself into one of the most cunning and treacherous double agents of all time. The views expressed in the contents above are those of our users and do not necessarily reflect the views of MailOnline. Did you feel that as you uncovered her story?I feel a huge amount of sympathy for her situation, and admiration, really. Primary Sources. Edith and Kim by Charlotte Philby is published by HarperCollins (14.99). Kim Philby, the most successful of the Cambridge spies, tried to drink himself to death in Moscow because he was disillusioned with communism and tortured by his own failings, his last wife has said in an interview. Two years later he was awarded the Order of the Red Banner. Were you always aware that your family had this extraordinary history? Born in India in 1912, Philby became a communist sympathiser after leaving Cambridge and began working as a KGB informer in the mid 1930s in London. And at every turn, the story is slightly different, the answer ever less clear: the more his character has come under scrutiny, the more elusive he has become. Thanks Darryl.I live in Australia. 1955Government white paper on Burgess-Maclean affair. Everything has seen better days. The reporter adds that Kim demonstrated an iron head for drink during the course of their subsequent meetings, which took place over a series of long, boozy meals: I could detect no change in his alertness or joviality as the waiter arrived with relays of 300 grams of vodka or 600 grams of Armenian brandy. Like my father, Kim had amazing stamina for drink; the pair of them would knock it back over games of chess at the flat in Moscow (while I ran around wreaking havoc in the living room) and on the long trips to Siberia and Bulgaria they took together. Your email address will not be published. She put the two boys into the International School in Geneva and finally explained to them what had happened to their father, reporting to her sister that their worst fear seems to be that I might vanish too. In our final extract, she secretly joins him behind the Iron Curtain. But it wasnt true. En route, I pass some of Kims old haunts, and heeding his advice to visitors If you can no longer feel your nose, go inside stop off briefly for coffee at that famous Soviet hangout the Hotel Metropole. Entering through the front doors and under a rickety, freestanding metal detector, its like walking through a time-warp. So, perhaps, by the time he died, a year before the fall of the Berlin Wall and knowing what he must have known by then he did feel disappointed. Later arrives in Russia. Because hed told her from the very start. And this was the line Melinda presented to MI5 after his defection with fellow mole Guy Burgess: she had been every bit as duped as theyd been. Charlotte Philby, daughter of John Philby, H.A.R. References. In a secluded area next to the domed restaurant (one of Kims favourites), the dimly lit bar is serviced by grey-skinned waiters; faux-marble columns run between clusters of heavy red and gold chairs, frequented by groups of men in out-dated suits, briefcases and thick-rimmed glasses, knocking back glasses of vodka, under a thick circle of cigarette smoke. Philby had other less damaging routines: a cup of Russian tea at 7am and English tea with milk at 5pm, drunk from a fine porcelain cup. While I was researching this article, Bennett also the author of An Englishman Abroad, in which he imagines Guy Burgesss final years in Moscow: lonely, pathetic and wholly unfulfilled responded to a shorter opinion piece I wrote for this paper last July in which I defended my grandfathers decision not to apologise publicly for his actions. Then, with no more information to be had, the story of the Macleans went dead. He was my grandfather, and then as I grew older it became apparent that he was someone else, too. Philby's work led to the deaths of dozens of British agents, making him a reviled traitor once he was exposed in Britain. Now, in an attempt to impose some order on my own understanding of my grandfather, to clarify the kaleidoscopic image of him which has formed in my mind, I have returned for the first time as an adult to the country where, in political exile, he lived out the last 25 years of his life. Donald is well and happy to be with his family again. Your email address will not be published. 1951Tips off fellow Cambridge Spy Donald Maclean that a warrant has been issued for his arrest. She has three children and lives in London. Kim Philby was unmasked as a Soviet double agent in July 1963 when . For one thing, like all the men in the Philby family, he was bloody-minded. The two men in the front seat my guards of honour peer out in silence, squinting their eyes against the sunlight as it pours in through the canopy of trees above. Was he wrong to have continued on the Communist path once so many others had stepped off? In fact, he had arrived in Moscow days earlier, and can be seen on film standing just back from his fathers coffin. What are you currently reading?Im trying to reconnect with what made me fall in love with books and the process of writing so Im going back to reread some of the books that feel seminal for me: The Beach, The Child in Time, White Teeth, Disgrace, The Poisonwood Bible and The Peoples Act of Love. No doubt your grandfather would have disapproved of the sharp contrasts in present-day Russia, he said. He was able to order new books from Bowes & Bowes bookshop in Cambridge, who checked with MI5 whether they should be supplying him. In the middle of the bookcase behind his desk, above his empty chair, just where Kims head would have rested, a single book looms out, cover first. Born in 1946, Dudley 'Tommy' Philby is the third of Kim's five children with his second of four wives, Aileen Furse Philby. A timely, gripping and morally complex thriller. THE SECOND WOMAN - the third of three connected, stand-alone novels - is available now, A Double Life is included in the Times' critics' round-up of the best thrillers of 2020, 'Superbly crafted with heart-stopping twists and chills galore.' As for the drinking, Kim never needed an excuse to crack open a bottle; he was a drinker in good times and in bad. That summer, friends thought her distracted. Published by Charlotte Philby on 12th June 2018. Our driver makes various calls en route, each consisting of just a few short sentences, before turning into a different burial ground up the road, manned with armed guards. Laying flowers at my grandfather's grave. Cambridge-educated Nicholas Elliott and Kim Philby became close friends in 1940, when they were both working in separate departments of the British Intelligence . Youve written three previous novels about espionage and betrayal did you need to approach that world obliquely before tackling Kims story?I was adamant that I didnt want to write about Kim because ironically I didnt want to define myself through his life. November 16, 2017. Image: Barney Beech, The courtyard outside Kim's flat. How much more so when its your own family?My relationship to my grandfather is complex and constantly evolving. He barely embraced his wife. She also helped find homes for Kindertransport children and during the Second World War helped set up the British Restaurants for people who had been bombed in the Blitz. Without a word, he steps out in his long dark trench coat and buffed-leather shoes, opening the back door for me to follow. But no matter; allowing myself plenty of time to get lost, Im soon heading towards the apartment where my grandfather lived out the final 25 years of his life under the watchful eye of Moscow and where his widow Rufa is currently preparing an enormous spread for our afternoon tea. His father had a distinguished past as an explorer and fixer for the region's movers and shakers, and any intelligence Kim could pick up through his father's outstanding contacts would be useful to the bosses in . In her article, published yesterday in British daily The Independent, she describes Kim Philby as "a proud man, and one who chose to publicly stand by his actions". At one stage, in the programme for his play Single Spies, the writer Alan Bennett printed a claim that my dad John had turned up late to his own fathers funeral, straight from the airport, and stood swaying behind a gravestone clutching bags of booze. He liked the fact that you could only buy seasonal goods in Moscow, but asked family members to bring out the non-perishables he loved and couldnt get there marmalade, Marmite and Worcestershire sauce. Kim Philby with partner Melinda Maclean (who later returned to her husband and fellow spy, Donald Maclean) walk in the woods outside Moscow in the 1960's, photographed by his son John, Donald Maclean pictured in 1937 whilst on a skiing holiday - he fled to Moscow to escape arrest in Britain as the spy who, for 15 years, had passed state secrets to the Soviet Union, Melinda Maclean and her sons in their last European home in Geneva 1953 -she was slight with curly, dark hair, 'an under-educated, attractive woman who was both affectionate and popular'. Melinda Maclean. Regardless of what I think of her ideology, I greatly admire the fact that she was able to hold these various parts of her life being a photographer, being a single mother alongside being a revolutionary, feeling that she could change the world. "There was one funny incident," she remembered. She is also the granddaughter of, MI5missed early chance to expose Soviet agent Kim Philby, files reveal, Love and Deception: Philby in Beirut by James Hanning review the spy who loved, maybe, ASplinter of Ice review Graham Greene and Kim Philby clink glasses, Graham Greenes showdown with Soviet spy Kim Philby: A Splinter of Ice review, KimPhilby: new revelations about spy emerge in secret files, George Blake exemplified the desolation, waste and treachery of the cold war, Moscow names square after British double agent Kim Philby, Athriller of spies and betrayal: by Kim Philbys granddaughter. The central post office, where Kim would come every morning to pick up his mail and a stack of British and American newspapers, stands halfway up on the left. Grandpas flat is almost exactly as he left it: After Kim left, I didnt want to change anything, Rufa says. He went on to serve the KGB for 54 years. Shes a sympathetic character in the novel. When Melinda and the children joined him, they moved into a small apartment and the children were put into the local Soviet schools. In his lifetime, Kim married four times, and had five children by his second wife Aileen Furse. And while on holiday in Majorca, she gave away a lot of her clothes to the maid of a family she was staying with. But such treatment did not last and they were quickly dispatched to the closed city of Kuybyshev, 600 miles east of Moscow far away, they were told, from British assassination squads. Kim Philby, byname of Harold Adrian Russell Philby, (born January 1, 1912, Ambala, Indiadied May 11, 1988, Moscow, Russia, U.S.S.R.), British intelligence officer until 1951 and the most successful Soviet double agent of the Cold War period. 1933Leaves Cambridge a convinced Communist. Kim Philby drank while Guy Burgess, who was gay, missed his friends in London, including Anthony Blunt whose spying activities, though known to the government, were kept under wraps until they were exposed much later, in 1979. Required fields are marked *. Personal life. Kim leapt up and shouted, 'Whoever is rude to my wife is rude to me!' You should have seen his face.". Rather than angrily confront Philby, the American stated he would ask with considerable satisfaction, "How do . He was 76. By JOSEPH FITSANAKIS | | Mid-morning, wrapped against the cold in Kims old bear hat and a matching coat (its too cold here for animal rights), I set off from my hotel with a map and enough money for the metro and taxi Ill need to take me from the station to the cemetery off the Mozhaisk highway. For one thing, Kims life behind the Iron Curtain wasnt bad. He reported to the Soviet NKVD from the Spanish civil war under the guise of a correspondent for the Times, and in 1940 joined the Secret Intelligence Service (SIS, or MI6), becoming a double agent and passing many secrets to the Kremlin. All was reasonably well between them until Kim Philby the master-spy who recruited him back in their Cambridge days himself defected in 1963. Kim sacrificed everything he had: he risked his life and the lives of others, he betrayed his colleagues and duped his family and friends (even spying on his own father at one stage, as will be explained shortly) because he genuinely believed from the point when he joined the movement and set his sights against the seemingly irrepressible rise of Fascism that Communism was a cause worth holding dear above all else. But even then, having made calculated decisions based on deeply-felt political ideals, I still dont think he would have done things any differently. But though his love affair with the cause never wavered, his love affair with Melinda did. Little Donald said perhaps he had gone to India because that would be a good place to hide., Donald Maclean with his wife Melinda Marling and his two sons Ronald and Fergus in the 50s, Wanted pictures are posted at a Berlin checkpoint for Donald Maclean and Guy Burgess, Guy Burgess (pictured) did not cope well to life in the Soviet Union - he got drunk and roamed Kuybyshev looking for action, on one occasion having his teeth knocked out in a brawl. Today, Moscows main strip, Tverskaya Ryad which I remember from childhood holidays as a drab grey stretch clotted with queues of people who looked like they didnt know what they were waiting for (though it was usually oranges or ice cream) is barely recognisable: a knot of designer stores and mobile-phone shops, interspersed with garish billboards hanging between the buildings above the busy main road. Philby exposed. Over the years he did everything that was asked of him: he gave everything he had to the cause, and yet still Moscow was deeply suspicious of a man who has been described as their finest and most loyal servant. Then she drove off with the children. That he could carry on a secret life without her being aware, while at the same time working his way up the ranks of the British Foreign Office, seemed perfectly possible. Prince and Princess of Wales pay tribute to Auschwitz survivor Zigi Shipper, who dedicated his life to No rest for Anne! It was, in fact, those journeys to Kims flat which form some of my strongest early memories: flying down the third lane of the motorway in an unmarked car. Viktor Suvorov . They gave a lot of parties. The gang of British spies who ended up in Moscow in the 1950s and 1960s were employed in KGB training schools and international research institutes. He achieved the deception by employing his occasional stutter, so as to buy himself time to think before telling another bare-faced lie. Seconds later, were hurtling at break-neck speed out of the cemetery, along the motorway, the driver making various calls en route, each consisting of just a few short sentences, before turning into a different burial ground up the road, manned with armed guards. Was he lamentable for still believing that a Communist state could ultimately exist, free from the corruption which plagues all systems, to the benefit of a fair, just society? In the end despite having been what Allen Dulles (de facto head of the CIA from 1953 to 1961) once reluctantly described as the best spy Russia ever had Kim was watched over as much as looked after by his masters, and he was not used to his full potential. She emphasised the strength and goodness of their fathers moral and political beliefs as a committed communist who wanted peaceful co-existence between East and West. 1963Disappears in Beirut on 23 January. The kitchen where he would ritualistically make his daily breakfast of bacon, eggs and toast (another English habit he never broke), and spent hours cooking every evening, is now rich with the smell of the savoury pancakes Rufa is preparing for our five-hour feast. If we were really lucky, sometimes and this was still the 1980s thered be a distant ringing, and from a compartment near the gear stick, our escort would pull out a telephone attached to a spiral cord, which hed talk into in a low voice, repeating the same two words, horosho and da, again and again before hanging up. In the intervening years, there have been endless attempts to understand how this gregarious, public-school educated English chap and his fellow Cambridge spies Guy Burgess, Donald Maclean, Anthony Blunt and John Cairncross could have been persuaded to betray their country, and dupe their family and their friends. This article was amended on 31 March. Two hours later, wind-battered and almost frozen solid, I finally arrive at the gates of the busy cemetery, where, hoping the guard might be able to point me in the right direction, I scrawl down my grandfathers name and the word Communist on an old tissue, and flash my driving licence. The extent of these contrasts can be seen by comparing two articles appearing on consecutive days in the Moscow Times. (4 children) Litzi Friedmann (24 February 1934 - 1946) (divorced . Putting real historical characters into a novel is a minefield, especially those who existed within living memory. In 1963 he was revealed to be a member of the Cambridge Five, a spy ring which had divulged British secrets to the Soviets during World War II and in the early stages of the Cold War. His drinking made him paranoid that his wife would abandon him. It's Mr (coffee) Bean! In the programme for his play Single Spies, the writer Alan Bennett printed a claim that my dad had turned up late to his own fathers funeral, straight from the airport, and stood swaying behind a gravestone clutching bags of booze. 1942Marries Aileen Furse, with whom he has two daughters and three sons. ", Pukhova, now 78, said she was irritated by stories about Philby's drink problem, but admitted he wasn't always able to stick to his two-glass rule. Aileen died in 1957, when Tommy was just 11 years old; his contact with his father was cut off as soon as the double spy defected to the USSR in January 1963. Kim was won over by the Communist cause while a student at Cambridge University, and upon graduation in 1933, travelled to Vienna to serve the international Communist organisation Comintern which was illegal in Austria with 100 in his pocket given to him by his father, St John, who was also a Cambridge graduate. The Second Woman: Best new fiction, Mail on Sunday. He sounded in good health and expressed the strong hope that she would join him in. Maclean bequeathed Blake his library of books, including Trollope, Macaulay's History of England, Morley's Life of Gladstone, and the Macmillan and Eden memoirs. Understandably, as a consequence, he is loathed by many. But we visited Kim in Moscow and those holidays form some of my earliest memories, so it wasnt like he was a secret. Feeling a strong dissatisfaction with British policy in the Middle East, Kims father resigned from the Foreign Service in 1930, converting to Islam and taking the name Hajj Abdullah. Although she would be left pitied, even censured, and alone in a country in which she had spent barely one-tenth of her life, it might be better that he should be free to live a new life in Moscow than spend a decade behind bars. In a written statement, they admitted they had been Communists since their Cambridge days and disingenuously described themselves as political refugees, not spies. 1946Moves to Turkey, working as head of SIS there. To order A Spy Among Friends or Kim Philby, each at 14.99 with free UK p&p, call Guardian book service on 0330 333 6846 or go to 1925Attends Westminster School in London. He feared that she would dump him because he was just a boring official in the British diplomatic service so to make myself look better and more important, I told her the reason why I led such a life. But the two men, for so long ideological comrades, fell out. Kim even duped his own children, and left them behind when he fled to Moscow. Harold Adrian Russell " Kim " Philby ORB, OL ODN (1 January 1912 - 11 May 1988) [1] was a British intelligence officer and a double agent for the Soviet Union. A plaque in his honour was unveiled by the head of the foreign intelligence service at its headquarters in Moscow in December. It had been a long time coming. JOHN Philby, the eldest son of Soviet spy Kim Philby, who was a double agent and the notorious Third Man in the Cambridge spy ring of the 1930s, has died in England. I remember at the time feeling that something very dark was happening and that I didnt feel safe. 1965Awarded the Order of the Red Banner, one of the Soviet Unions highest military honours. 1958Marries Eleanor Brewer, an American. because he "didn't want his children, who were used to life of freedom, to suffer life of oppression". "I tried everything to save him; after all, he was killing himself. And perhaps he felt that he certainly resented having to be escorted pretty much wherever he went for his first years in Moscow, as Rufa attests. Once hed gone, she rode out the public furore, the door-stepping journalists, the MI5 questioning, the abuse and insinuations, the bullying of her sons at school. 1940Recruited by British Secret Services and attached to the Secret Intelligence Services (SIS) under Guy Burgess. Later she became a journalist at the Independent. In the living room, the same furs hang above the sofa, alongside a pair of Afghan guns a gift from the KGB colleague whom I spoke to earlier. I think part of the appeal of writing this book was trying to reconcile the ways in which Ive come to understand him: as a grandfather; a father; a friend; a traitor; an idealist. "Once, a big group of us were on a trip on the Volga: Kim and I and, of course, his KGB escort, and the escort's daughter. Heads to Vienna to serve the movement there. In 1955, Harold Macmillan, then Foreign Secretary, issued a statement confirming that there was no evidence that Kim Philby was a Soviet agent. She flew to New York to see her daughter Annie, and it was there that several letters arrived from Philby. Journalists look after their own and Philby masqueraded as a devil-may-care drunken newspaperman and so was treated more indulgently by those in his profession.. Melinda fitted the bill. It was a few years after this, in 1933, that Kim went to Vienna. There, he volunteered for the refugee committee, fundraising, secretly writing and disseminating propaganda, raising funds and distributing clothes and money to those whod escaped Fascist Germany. In Philbys own eyes he was working for the shape of things to come from which his country would benefit., Kim went to great efforts upon his return to England to cover the traces of his Communist background joining the Anglo-German fellowship in 1934, and editing its pro-Hitler magazine. Original reporting and incisive analysis, direct from the Guardian every morning, Kim Philby in Russia in 1968, five years after defecting. Just five years ago, my mum and I were refused service in a shop in Arizona on account of the name on our credit cards. Charlotte Philby, daughter of John Philby, H.A.R. The controversial civil rights leader was gunned down in front of his wife and children while making a speech in New York. For some, details like this have fuelled the question of whether arriving for the first time ever in the country for which hed sacrificed everything, which was supposed to represent everything hed fought for, and where he would live out the rest of his days in exile he became disillusioned and embittered, and longed instead for the land hed betrayed. 1941Transferred to SIS Iberian sub-section. Shes always cast as a bit player if shes mentioned at all, but she was a remarkable woman. 1912Harold Adrian Russell Kim Philby is born on 1 January in Amballa, India, the son of Dora and St John. However, Pukhova said the fear that she would leave had helped her husband temper his intake in later years.
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