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The creation of what Winston Churchill named the 'Iron Curtain' along the borders between Western and Eastern Europe in the late 1940s made conventional espionage extremely difficult. This forced the Western powers to fall back upon their large fleets of transport aircraft and bombers for intelligence-gathering work. The range of aerial spying activities were extensive, from classic photoreconnaissance, the insertion of agents deep within enemy territory (HUMINT), through to electronic intelligence (ELINT) - subdivided into communications intelligence (COMINT), signals intelligence (SIGINT) and telemetry intelligence (TELINT) - to the monitoring of nuclear tests.
Always at the forefront of such activities, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) of the USA clandestinely developed a large organization, operating dozens of - often heavily - modified aircraft for all of these purposes. Their activities reached frantic proportions especially during the late 1940s, when the Agency became involved in attempts to inspire popular uprisings in several countries of what would later be known as the Warsaw Pact, or even on the soil of the Union of the Soviet Socialist Republics itself. While sometimes revealed in public - whether by accident or by design - the mass of such operations remain largely unknown.
While the activities of the U-2 are reasonably well documented We Were Never There Volume 3, is the first ever effort to research, record, and explain CIA-run clandestine operations beyond the Iron Curtain by these other aircraft types and is based on extensive research, dozens of interviews with the participants and official documentation now released to the public.
The book is lavishly illustrated with original photographs, custom-drawn maps and color profiles, thus providing a unique insight into these affairs and and a single-point source of reference.