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During the Cold War, espionage balloons launched by the "Free world" had a secondary psychological warfare capability, carrying propaganda pamphlets and consumer goods (which were supposedly not freely available inside Communist states) that would be released or otherwise delivered onto enemy territories.
The advent of spy satellites, coupled with the end of the Cold War, have rendered espionage balloons obsolete.
- Peebles, Curtis, 1991. The Moby Dick Project: Reconnaissance Balloons over Russia. Smithsonian Books, ISBN 1-56098-025-7
- Fowler, Shane (25 July 2017). "Mystery solved: 'Thing in the woods' revealed as CIA spy camera, 55 years later". Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 26 July 2017.