Ivan Agayants

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Ivan Ivanovich Agayants (August 28 1911 - May 12 1968) was a leading Soviet NKVD/KGB intelligence officer of Armenian origin. He reportedly helped prevent a German operation to attack the three allied leaders meeting at the 1943 Teheran Conference. On his return to Moscow Agayants was appointed to head the Western European Department of what would become the KGB. In 1967 Agayants was appointed deputy head of the First Chief Directorate. He died on May 12, 1968. During his lifetime he was given many awards by the Soviet government, including the Order of Lenin, and his name is engraved in gold on the wall of Russia's Foreign Intelligence Service headquarters in Moscow among the other leading intelligence officers. He is buried in Moscow's Novodevichy Cemetery.


  • We must constantly encourage Western journalists to write precisely the opposite of our real intentions and anyone who writes or speaks about our real intentions accurately or impartially in the Western sense of these words must quickly be dismissed and ridiculed as someone of the Right or a fascist, someone who wants to bring back McCarthyism.
    • Explaining the benefits of disinformation. Quoted in "KGB" - Page 142 - by Brian Freemantle - Social Science - 1982
  • I think, that it is our common duty from now on to stop Chinese penetration of the international Communist movement and in relation to Western powers to show China as the main present and future troublemaker.
    • Quoted in "The Deception Game: Czechoslovak Intelligence in Soviet Political Warfare" - by Ladislav Bittman - Political Science - 1972

About Agayants

  • The Cheka and each of its organizational descendants had a 'Disinformation Desk' until reorganization of the KGB in 1959 produced a full-fledged Disinformation Department known as Department D of the First Chief Directorate. The first director was General Ivan Ivanovich Agayants, a tall aloof Armenian with grizzled hair and a thin gray mustache. Ascetic and solemn, Agayants combined personal puritanism with a penchant for professional ruthlessness. He gathered a staff of some fifty officers at the Centre and stationed another fifteen to twenty at the KGB's Karlshorst Residency in East Berlin. Additionally, he received authorization to engage scientists, technical specialists, and military officers as consultants whenever needed.
    • John Barron
  • Old intelligence hands still remember this good-natured and wise man.
    • Vadim Kirpichenko

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