Arkady Shevchenko

Arkady Shevchenko

Arkady Shevchenko

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Arkady Nikolayevich Shevchenko ( October 11, 1930 – February 28, 1998), a Soviet diplomat, was the highest-ranking Soviet official to defect to the West.

Shevchenko joined the diplomatic service of the Soviet Union as a young man and rose through the ranks of the Soviet Foreign Ministry, becoming advisor to Andrei Gromyko, Minister for Foreign Affairs. In 1973 he was appointed Under Secretary General (USG) of the United Nations. During his assignment at the UN headquarters in New York City Shevchenko began passing Soviet secrets to the CIA. In 1978 he cut his ties to the Soviet Union and defected to the United States.

Early life and education

Arkady was born in the town of Gorlovka, eastern Ukrainian SSR, but when he was five years old his family moved to Eupatoria, a resort town in Crimea on the Black Sea, where his physician father was the administrator of a tuberculosis sanatorium. When the Crimea was overrun by German forces in 1941, he and his mother, along with the patients in the sanatorium, were evacuated to Torgai in the Altai mountains of Siberia. The family was reunited in 1944 after the Germans were driven out of the Crimea.

Arkady graduated from high school in 1949 and in the same year was admitted to Moscow State Institute of International Relations. He studied Soviet law, Marxist, Leninist and Stalinist theory and trained to become a foreign service diplomat. He married Lina (Leongina), a fellow student, in 1951. He graduated in 1954, but continued...
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