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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - May 14, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta i German spy was 1956 'refugee9 By ROON LEWALD BONN Guenter personal aide for party political affairs to West German Chancellor Willy was awakened by his front door bell ringing at a.m. April 24. The men at the door said they were security police and had come to arrest him and his 46-year-old wife Christel as spies for Communist East Germany. That moment unleashed an espionage scandal that grew until it toppled clouded his life's task of East-West besmirched his private life with ugly rumors and left his successors with a legacy of political trouble. Guillaume was no James Bond. Entering West Germany as a supposed political refugee among hundreds of others on May he plodded doggedly upward through Social Democratic party ranks for 14 years before his services were rewarded with a chancellery post in 1970. Some details secret Many facts about West Germany's biggest post-war espionage scandal must remain forever secret. Here is what is known so Under Guillaume admitted he was an East German army captain and an agent of East Berlin's ministry for state security. When Brandt flew back to Bonn the next day from talks in Cairo with President Anwar the scandal was headline obliterating all interest in a long-awaited parliament vote approving legalized abortion. Brandt's Social Democrats were flabbergasted. Guillaume had joined the party in advanced to Frankfurt branch secretary in 1963 and later became secretary of the party's City House faction. He was remembered as a hard worker and convinced right- somewhat less intelligent than his wife a secretary in the Bonn office of the Hesse state government. George the defence minister who recommended Guillaume's 1970 transfer to ruefully would have given Gillaume a good report if I was asked the day before Soon the government froze long-planned accreditation of the first mission chiefs to be exchanged by East and West heralding a slowdown in the East-West reconciliation which may lead East Berlin to regret its spectacular espionage coup. Claim they suspected men at first claimed Guillaume's arrest was a counter-espionage maintaining the spy was under suspicion as far back as the early summer of 1973 shortly after his promotion as one of four Brandt aides from a relatively harmless chancellery post. agent was not instructed by me to handle secret files because this did not belong to his Brandt claimed in a statement that would rebound later. Government spokesmen initially claimed Guillaume's spy role appeared to have been aimed mainly at Social Democratic party internal affairs. Though cleared to handle documents he routinely handled only matters and had no direct access to NATO military secrets because he did not possess NATO's ultimate security they said. The assurances did not convince the conservative Christian Union opposition alliance. It saw the spy scandal as a chance to hammer away at its contention that Brandt's Ostpolitik sacrificed too much for too few returns from the Soviet bloc. The opposition demanded the resignation of Postal Minister Horst Ehmke. who as chancellery chief had appointed Guillaume in 1970. Ehmke denied he was negligent in disregarding intelligence files disclosing as far back as a West Berlin anti- Communist organization suspected Guillaume of using a job on an East Berlin popular science magazine as a front for espionage trips to West Berlin and West Germany. See inefficiency Critics charged it was clear that either Ehmke or counter- spy officials had been less than efficient in accepting plausible explantions by Guillaume for his East Berlin activities before 1956 after checks failed to prove conclusive contrary evidence. Pressure on the government and on May 5. the man who gained the respect of East and West through friendship treaties bridging opposed political decided to resign. In his letter of resignation Brandt said he had been in the .Guillaume affair. But the scandal was not over .Newspaper reports started alleging that Guillaume threatened to reveal embarrassing details of Brandt's private life unless he was released in a spy swap with East Germany. In a national television address Brandt effectively admitted he had misled the Bundestag in declaring that Guillaume had been unmasked as far back as early 1973 and had not obtained secret documents. should never have permitted secret papers to go through the hands of the agent during my vacation in Norway last he strengthening opposition claims that Guillaume then had access to secret papers including NATO documents he leaked to East Germany. Brandt added he also resigned because he no longer felt himself impartial enough in dealings with East Germany and the Warsaw pact. Brandt said he had decided that his was sufficient cause to resign of respect for unwritten rules of But he failed to silence speculation over his private and observers expected the Guillaume affair and its ugly aftermath to trouble Brandt and his political heirs for a long time to come. Sea law meeting world's largest CARACAS Representatives of nearly every country on earth will gather in Venezuela next month to decide what to do about 70 per cent of the earth's surface the oceans. It may be the largest international meeting ever held. About delegates and observers from 150 countries are expected at the third conference of the United Nations on the law of the sea. The tentative agenda contains some 100 separate items to be discussed in 2Vz months. The two previous sea-law one in 1958 and the other in were miniature gatherings compared with the Caracas conference. is going to be the the history of the said a U.S. official. I went over the list of issues with some other people recently and it took us Only North Vietnam will not be coming to the organizers in protest over the exclusion of the Viet Cong. The issues are as complex as they are many. 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