Open main menu

Today's featured article

Guy Burgess (1911–1963) was a British diplomat and Soviet agent, a member of the Cambridge Five spy ring that operated from the mid-1930s to the early years of the Cold War. His defection in 1951 to the Soviet Union, with his fellow-spy Donald Maclean, led to a serious breach in Anglo-American intelligence co-operation, and caused long-lasting demoralisation in Britain's foreign and diplomatic services. Born into a wealthy middle-class family, Burgess was educated at Eton College and Trinity College, Cambridge, where he embraced left-wing politics and joined the British Communist Party. He was recruited by Soviet intelligence in 1935, on the recommendation of the future double-agent Kim Philby. After working for the BBC as a producer, Burgess joined the Foreign Office in 1944 and served in several sensitive posts, including a spell as secretary to Hector McNeil, the deputy to Ernest Bevin, the Foreign Secretary. In the critical postwar period Burgess had access to information on all aspects of Britain's foreign policy, and may have passed thousands of documents to his Soviet controllers. He fled to Moscow in May 1951 and never left the Soviet Union. (Full article...)

In the news

Eliud Kipchoge in 2015
Eliud Kipchoge
Read in another language