“Space Sleuths of the Cold War” relates for the first time the inside story of the amateur spies who monitored the Soviet space program during the Cold War. It is written by many of those “space sleuths” themselves and chronicles the key moments in their discovery of hidden history. This book shows that dedicated observers were often better than professionals at interpreting that information coming out of the USSR during the dark days of the Cold War.
This book takes a unique approach to the history of Soviet spaceflight – looking at the personal stories of some of the researchers as well as the space secrets the Soviets tried to keep hidden. The fascinating account often reads like a Cold War espionage novel.
“Space Sleuths of the Cold War” includes an impressive list of contributors, such as: Editor Dominic Phelan, giving an overall history of the Cold War hunt for Soviet space secrets. Space writer Brian Harvey reveals his own personal search through official Soviet radio and magazines to find out what they were (and weren’t) revealing to the outside world at the height of the space race. Sven Grahn from Sweden details his own 40 year quest to understand what was happening on the other side of the Iron Curtain. Professional American historian Asif Siddiqi explores his own adventures in the once secret Russian archives – often seeing documents never before read by Westerners. Dutch cosmonaut researcher Bert Vis provides an inside account of the Yuri Gagarin training center in Moscow. Belgian researcher Bart Hendrickx’s details his important translation of the 1960s’ diaries of cosmonaut team leader General Kamanin. Pioneer space sleuth James Oberg’s shares his memories of his own notable ‘scoops.' Paris-based writer Christian Lardier recounts the efforts of French space sleuths – whose work was frequently overlooked in the USA and Britain because of the language barrier.