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08 September 2011


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So much great information that I never would have found on my own. Thanks!

William R. Cumming

Nice wrap! And the SML counted and took pics of all US Officers deplanning and leaving Frankfurt during most of Cold War. Some estimated less than 10% of US units officer TOE in EUCOM during my time in FRG!But FRG Green Plates on USA cars made counting easy also. After two years stationed in FRG I took home a BMW 2002 purchased for $2500! 4 Marks to the dollar.


Great story, thank you.

Cato the Censor

Interesting post,particularly for me since I had the privilege of two months' TDY at Field Station Berlin in the early '80's (some of the happiest days of my life). I knew we played a lot of spook games back then, but never knew the extent of it. Thanks for the information.


Re: "The sentry had snapped a salute, then a classic double take as he realized that he was facing two foreigners wearing bizarre-looking Night Vision Goggles. "

Do ya thunk he told his Polkovnik 'Whoops? I seriously doubt it. LOL


Great read. Wow, that era isn't *that* long ago, but it seems like another planet.


One of the earliest childhood memories I can conjure is of my toddler self wandering around a backyard, uprooting a cabbage in a garden, then turning around and launching it underhand over a massive grey wall. The memory stuck because of the uproarious laughter this action elicited from the back porch. When the laughter died down, our neighbors, whose cabbage I had just condemned to a life of communism, took me to the upstairs attic room and let me peer out of the roof window onto the no-man's land "over there."


I've heard many great stories from that time from my father, and lived some myself. We and the rest of our city deeply mourned the inevitable American departure after the Wende. I've passed this along to him.

Thank you.

Kieran Wanduragala

Well written and a fascinating glimpse of the world of intelligence. Thanks. Look forward to more.

FB Ali

Have just read this great story. Couldn't resist going back to the comments on my piece, The Grocer and Alice's Cat, to see if Basilisk had commented on it.

It pleased me greatly to see that he had liked it!


Sir, Kindl wasn't so bad, better than Schultheiss . . . btw I worked for you at MRC/the Villa back in the bad ole days. Great story, and it was an honor . . .

William R. Cumming

About every 5 years I see JUDGEMENT AT NUREMBERG with Spencer Tracey, Burt Lancaster, Richard Widmark, and Maxmillin Schell. Watched again last week and find it resonates as we get to the end of the first decade after 9/11/01!

The basic question asked by this most excellent movie, IMO, is what exactly does the USA stand for in its international policies and relations?

Patrick Lang

Basilisk's story is about the maudlin nature of "international relations." What has that to do with the "purpose' of US foreign relations? pl

Charles I

Wonderful bit of sharing, thanks very much from an erstwhile espionage-obsessed armchair cold warrior.

Plants a seed makes me wonder whether there is ANY kind of relationship/synergy/vector between high end auto makers and the thieves of the kind alleged and occasionally prosecuted between big tobacco and the cigarette entrepreneurs working our border.


Russia's oligarchical appetite drives the continued "importation" of over 100k cars from the streets of Germany annually. It is common for the cars to be lifted straight into the back of a truck headed for the Polish border. I woke up one morning to see the other side of my street swept clean of Mercedes, BMW, etc. Much good a "club" or car alarm does against operations like that.

I've often wondered just how seamless the transition was from military occupation to mafia control; this story certainly illuminates that.


Excellent piece of - not only interesting but great writing, too. Thank you for sharing!

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