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Alfred Redl (1864-1913)Download nowEnlargeShow similar images

Title: Alfred Redl (1864-1913)

Description: Colonel Alfred Redl (March 14, 1864-May 25, 1913), Austrian officer and Chief of Counter-Intelligence for Imperial Austria-Hungary, as well as a double agent for Imperial Russia. Redl was an innovative spymaster, instituting many modern intelligence techniques into Austrian counter-intelligence, including fingerprinting, voice recordings, postal censorship, and "Third Degree" interrogation techniques. In 1901, Colonel Nikolai Batyushin, of the Imperial Russian Intelligence, learned that Redl was a homosexual, who enjoyed an extravagant lifestyle. Russian agents used Redl's sexual habits to blackmail him into giving them Austrian state secrets and, by 1903, he became the highest paid double agent working for Imperial Russia (1903-1913). Redl turned over the secret Austrian plans to invade Serbia to his Russian spymasters and they turned over those plans to Serbia, enabling that country to successfully defeat Austrian forces at the beginning of WWI. He arranged for Russian agents captured in Austria to escape and identified Austrian agents operating in Russia to the Okhrana, Imperial Secret Police, which brought about the arrest and executions of dozens of such Austrian spies. Redl, in exchange for enormous payments from Russia, gave the Russians every top state secret of Austria, which enabled Russia to inflict heavy losses on Austrian forces during WWI. Redl, who is considered one of Austria's arch traitors, is claimed to have brought about a half million deaths of his countrymen through his betraying espionage. In May 1913, Captain Maximillian Ronge (November 9, 1874-September 10, 1953), of Austrian Military Intelligence, discovered Redl's double agent role, monitoring Redl's correspondence (and using Redl's own postal censorship methods to detect him), finding payments to him from Russian spymasters. Redl was confronted with the evidence and confessed. To prevent his widespread treason from being publicized, he was allowed to commit suicide. Ronge provided Redl with a pistol and left the spy in his lavish Vienna home, waiting outside. Thirteen hours later, Ronge and his aides found Redl dead, sitting naked in a chair before a large mirror with several lights playing upon his corpse--the same kind of bright lights Redl had used in his "Third Degree" interrogations. Redl had left a note stating: "Levity and passion have destroyed me. Pray for me. I pay with my life for my sins...I will die now. Please do not permit a post-mortem examination. Pray for me. Alfred." Agents later found in one of Redl's mansions in Prague thousands of incriminating documents that proved his treason and double-dealing not only with Russia, but reportedly with France and Italy, to whom he had also been selling Austrian secrets.

Category: Intelligence

Keywords: Alfred Redl, Nikolai Batyushin, Maximillian Ronge, Austrian Counter-Intelligence, Austrian Military Intelligence, Okhrana, Imperial Russian Intelligence, spies, spying, espionage, Intelligence, traitors, treason, Third Degree, postal censorship, state secrets, double agents, suicides, homosexuals

Orientation: Vertical

Dimensions: 900 x 1936 (1.74 MPixels) (2.15)

Print Size: 7.6 x 16.4 cm; 3.0 x 6.5 inches

File Size: 5.02 MB (5,261,904 Bytes)

Resolution: 300 x 300 dpi

Color Depth: 16.7 million (24 BitsPerPixel)

Compression: None

Image Number: 0000004438

Source: Jay Robert Nash Collection

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