Stasi by John O. Koehler
The Untold Story of the East German Secret Police

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Synopsis

In this gripping narrative, John Koehler details the widespread activities of East Germany’s Ministry for State Security, or “Stasi.” The Stasi, which infiltrated every walk of East German life, suppressed political opposition, and caused the imprisonment of hundreds of thousands of citizens, proved to be one of the most powerful secret police and espionage services in the world. Koehler methodically reviews the Stasi’s activities within East Germany and overseas, including its programs for internal repression, international espionage, terrorism and terrorist training, art theft, and special operations in Latin America and Africa.Koehler was both Berlin bureau chief of the Associated Press during the height of the Cold War and a U.S. Army Intelligence officer. His insider’s account is based on primary sources, such as U.S. intelligence files, Stasi documents made available only to the author, and extensive interviews with victims of political oppression, former Stasi officers, and West German government officials. Drawing from these sources, Koehler recounts tales that rival the most outlandish Hollywood spy thriller and, at the same time, offers the definitive contribution to our understanding of this still largely unwritten aspect of the history of the Cold War and modern Germany.
 

About John O. Koehler

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Koehler served as foreign correspondent for the Associated Press for 28 years. He runs his own consulting firm in Stamford.
 
Published August 5, 2008 by Basic Books. 484 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences, Travel, Professional & Technical, Law & Philosophy. Non-fiction

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There has never been a secret police more fanatically intent on finding out what was going on than the Stasi, East Germany’s secret police force.

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To illustrate the Stasi's formidable reach, he cites some astounding numbers provided by famed Nazi hunter Simon Weisenthal: while Hitler's Gestapo policed 80 million Germans with a force of 40,000, the Stasi kept 17 million people in line with 102,000 officials, a number that doesn't even includ...

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