Thursday, August 16, 2012

The Invisible Harry Gold: The Man Who Gave the Soviets the Atom Bomb by Allen M. Hornblum.

The Invisible Harry Gold: The Man Who Gave the Soviets the Atom Bomb  by Allen M. Hornblum. Hardcover book published by Yale University Press 2010, 446 pages with a few black and white photographs.

I was always under the impression that Fuchs “gave the Soviets the Atom Bomb”, yet here’s a book about a  different guy “who gave the Soviets the Atom Bomb”.  How many bombs were the Soviets given?  I personally have never received a bomb, but bombs were obviously being thrown around left, left and left at the Soviets.  On closer inspection (… a quick read of the blurb) this book is about the guy that Fuchs gave the bomb to, who then technically, “gave” it to the Soviets.  In other words, the middle man, Harry Gold.

I’d never heard of Harry.  Maybe it’s a US thing… I’m not sure.  Apparently, Harry was a nice guy, so nice that he only served half of his 30 year prison sentence.  Unlike Fuchs who opted to emigrate to East Germany after being released, Harry stayed in the US and began teaching in a Hospital where everyone thought he was a nice guy despite his dodgy past.

All of this was a long time ago and I’m not really sure how interested people are in the Cold War or in the history of the Atom Bomb.  I personally have a slight interest in the whole thing, but that’s me and I assume with these sort of books that I’m not the only person interested.  Obviously the author and publisher thought there was some interest in the subject matter or else they wouldn’t have written and published the book.  Cold War history is something I don’t usually pick up as from experience it’s not a big seller here in Australia.  The Atom Bomb was something we never had… although one of our Prime Ministers (Menzies) was so keen on getting one that he let the Brits blow up bits of our desert in the hope of getting one handed over afterwards.  This didn’t happen…   Maybe he should have spoken to Harry Gold.

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