Friday, December 30 at 8.30pm on THE HISTORY CHANNEL
Meet cold war warrior Colonel Charles Spry – head of national security and intelligence, a major player in the political life of the country and a law unto himself.
From 1950 to 1970, Spry led Australia’s newly-established Intelliggence Service, ASIO. In a nuclear-charged world of spies, double agents and domino theories, he investigated hundreds of thousands of people – including the Prime Minister. Spry was particularly concerned by the Soviets and their corrupt ways of compromising those in high office. The sensational 1954 defections of Soviet Embassy officials, Vladimir and Evdokia Petrov, delivered him a great intelligence victory. But was Spry really the curse of the communists and defender of freedom and democracy? Or was he, like Hoover, guilty of the very sins he looked so hard to find in others?
Based on newly declassified information, including Spry’s secret testimony at the 1974 Royal Commission, II S , Spry unearths original ASIO surveillance footage and features candid interviews with former intelligence officers that at last reveal the true story.
Narrated by Hugo Weaving, I, Spry lifts the veil of secrecy from the man who ran Australia’s spy agency for almost 20 years – from his first fumbling counter-espionage operations to the agency’s evolution beyond government scrutiny and its its ultimate infiltration by the KGB ultimate infiltration by the KGB.