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Colonel David Smiley, who died on 10th January 2009 aged 92, was one of the most celebrated cloak-and-dagger agents of the Second World War, serving behind enemy lines in Albania, Greece, Abyssinia and Japanese-controlled eastern Thailand.
In this private video clip, filmed on 12 September 2002, he is being interview by prominent Albanian activist, Bejtullah Destani, who is currently Kosovo’s vice-ambassador in London.
He headed the British side of a secret Anglo-American venture to subvert the newly-installed Communist regime in Albania led by the ruthless Enver Hoxha. But Kim Philby, who was secretly working for the Russians, was the liaison between the British and Americans; almost all the 100 or so agents dropped by parachute or landed by boat were betrayed, and nearly all were tortured and shot. This failure haunted Smiley for the rest of his life.