In October 1962 it looked to millions of people like the politicians of the United States and Russia were determined to push the other across the fatal line of launching a nuclear strike. The fate of the world hung on Cuba, a troubled island state in the Caribbean.
Woven through the dramatic events in and around Cuba was a quieter but perhaps equally dangerous scandal – an enormous, deeply embedded network of Soviet spies at the heart of the NATO alliance. A senior KGB defector had revealed that his agency had penetrated the highest levels of the French government, military and intelligence services – but when a French agent tried to act he found himself blocked at every turn by his own superiors.
Alfred Hitchcock was so impressed by the fictional novel about the events (Topaz by Leon Uris) that he decided to adapt it into a movie. But fiction, as is often the case, only got half of the story. This book tells the remarkable true account of one of the greatest espionage scandals to rock the Cold War.