2004-12-13 15:58:58 UTC
New York Herald Tribune August 23, 1960 P15
Russia Expels 3 More U.S. Students-Tourists
Moscow -- Three more American student-tourists have been
ordered to leave the Soviet Union, it was learned today. One
was charged with photographing a forbidden factory and the
other two were accused of driving along a restricted road.
American Embassy sources said Josiah Andrews, twenty-one
of Great Neck, Long Island, was told to leave the country on
grounds that he took pictures of an off-limit factory in
Mr. Andrews, who was still in Moscow tonight, told Embassy
officials he was taking pictures of some Rostov apartment
houses when policemen collared him and hustled him to a
police station for a four-hour grilling, which he described
as "very unpleasant." He said the police accused him of
photographing a factory behind the apartment houses and
ignored his protests that he never saw the plant.
Another American tourist said two student-tourists reported
that they had been arrested by police and told to leave the
Soviet Union after they drove off the Lvov-Kiev road to take
home a Russian hitch hiker they had picked up earlier.
<end of article>
New York Herald Tribune August 31, 1960 P9
U.S. Student Not Expelled from Russia
Contrary to earlier reports, an American student tourist
reportedly ordered to leave the Soviet Union had not been
expelled. Rep. Steven B. Derounian of Roslyn, L.I., has
informed the mother of Josiah Andrews, 2 Preston Lane, Great
Neck, L.I., that her son was interrogated by police in Rostov,
given a warning and then permitted to resume his tour.
Mr. Andrews, twenty-one, a fluent Russian linguist was
reportedly arrested for photographing a forbidden factory.
He denied an intentional breach of Soviet law and said he
was merely photographing an apartment house in front of the
factory. Rep. Derouian [sic] made inquiries about Mr. Andrews'
status through the State Department in Washington, which
queried the embassy in Moscow.
<end of article>
Kaminsky & Bennett------------------------------------
Chicago Tribune Sept 17, 1960 P14
2 Americans Vanish During Russian Tour
Batch, Me.(UPI) -- Two Americans have disappeared
mysteriously while touring Russia, the wife of one of
them disclosed Friday. Mrs. Rena Bennett of Bath, Me.,
said her husband, Harvey, 26, and a friend of his,
Mark Kiminsky [sic; throughout], 27, of Ann Arbor,
Mich., entered Russia July 27 from Helsinki, Finland.
They were due in New York Sept. 1, she said.
"I don't know what's happened to them," she said.
"I am very much concerned."
In Washington State Department officials said they
have asked the American embassy in Moscow to check on
the men, and see what, if anything, happened to them.
Mrs. Bennett, also 26, said she last heard from her
husband in a letter dated Aug. 19. It was postmarked
She said she wrote that he was having a "good time"
but that he was "looking forward to coming home." Bennett
is a graduate of the University of California, where he
majored in Russian studies and was considered a severe
critic of the Reds.
Mrs. Bennett said her husband had planned to look for
a job, perhaps in teaching, on his return. She said
Kiminsky had a job waiting at Purdue University in
At West Lafayette, Purdue disclosed that Kiminksy had
accepted a job teaching modern languages and was to report
When Kiminsky failed to arrive, Dr. Elton Hocking of
Purdue checked and learned Kiminsky had not been heard from
since his brother received a card from Kiev dated Aug. 20,
saying: "See you soon."
Mrs. Daniel Kiminsky of Granger, Ind., wife of Mark's
brother, said Mark had been particularly critical of
constant police surveillance when he was in Moscow last
year as an employee of the American exhibit there.
<end of article>
New York Herald Tribune October 7, 1960 P14
Russia Reported Holding Tourist for Taking Photos
Washington (UPI) -- The Department of State said today
it has been informed that one of the American tourists
missing in the Soviet Union since August is being held for
taking a photograph in that country.
In spite of repeated inquiries, Soviet officials have
been silent about the two men -- Harvey C. Bennett, of Bath,
Me., and Mark Kaminsky, of Jefferson Township, Mich., who
was to have begun teaching at Purdue University this autumn.
The State Department said another American tourist has
reported that he saw Mr. Kaminsky on Aug. 25 at the Soviet
border control point in the Soviet Intourist travel agency
hotel at Uzhgorod, at the border of Czechoslovakia. The
State Department said the tourist quoted him as saying he
"was under detention for having taken a photograph.
The State Department said still another American tourist
has reported that he talked with both men at a hotel at
Kiev on Aug. 16.
State Department officials said Kaminsky was a guide at
the American exhibit at the 1959 Moscow Fair and that he
speaks Russian fluently. They said Mr. Bennett also speaks
The last direct word from the two men was in the form
of a postcard which Mrs. Bennett received from her husband
on Sept. 6. The card was dated Aug. 19 and was postmarked
"Vinnitsa," a Soviet town near the Czechoslovak border.
Mr. Bennett wrote on the card that he and Mr. Kaminsky
had had automobile trouble but planned to leave the Soviet
Union in about six days at Chop, a point where the Soviet,
Hungarian and Czechoslovak borders meet.
The State Department twice tried to get information from
the Intourist Agency. On Sept. 15, Intourist said the men
were scheduled to leave Uzhgorod on Aug. 24 but had not
passed the check point there and apparently still were in
the Soviet Union.
On Sept. 20, Intourist said no further information was
<end of article>
New York Herald Tribune October 17, 1960 P1
Reds Try U.S. Tourist as Spy
Moscow -- The Soviet Union said tonight an American tourist
recently expelled from the Soviet Union had been ousted after
pleading guilty to and being convicted of espionage and
sentenced to seven years in prison by a military court in a
verdict later commuted by the Soviet government. It said his
American companion, also expelled from this country, had
denounced him during the trial.
An announcement by Tass, the Soviet news agency, identified
the convicted man as Mark I. Kaminsky of Jefferson Township,
Mich., and his companion as Harvey C. Bennett of Bath, Me.
The two were ushered across the border near Uzhgorod, Tass
said. It did not give the date of their expulsion.
(The Associated Press reported that American officials in
Vienna speculated the men might drive through Czechoslovakia
and into West Germany.)
The two Americans were arrested and held incommunicado by
Soviet secret police last August in the Western Ukraine.
Repeated American Embassy queries to the Soviet Foreign
Ministry about them went unanswered. The secret police
apparently were grilling them and the military court trying
Mr. Kaminsky, probably in secret, while the queries were
being ignored. The embassy finally was notified last Friday
the two men had been expelled after a trial in the western
The military court sentenced Mr. Kaminsky to seven years
in prison, and he appealed the sentence to the Presidium of
the Supreme Soviet, Tass continued. In view of Mr. Kaminsky's
reported admission of guilt and expression of repentance, the
Presidium ruled he should be expelled instead of being sent to
jail, Tass said.
Tass said the Soviet Union "protested to the United States
against the intelligence services using tourists for
espionage purposes and asked it be stopped."
According to Tass, Mr. Kaminsky and Mr. Bennett
"intentionally deviated from their permitted route near
Uzhgorod (near the Soviet Union's Czech-Hungarian frontier)
and penetrated a significant distance inside a restricted
border area" while they were driving out of the Soviet
Union after a month's motor tour of the country.
The news agency said Mr. Kaminsky, who was a Russian-
speaking guide at the American Exhibit here in 1959, was
carrying maps on which were marked military installations
in the western Ukraine and the Soviet frontier area.
"Photographic film and a notebook proving he was collecting
intelligence data on Soviet territory" were taken from
him, Tass said.
He was charged with espionage under Article II of the
Soviet code on crimes against the state, one of the articles
under which [Gary] Powers was tried, Tass said. Mr. Kaminsky
pleaded guilty, the agency said, and was tried by a military
During the trial, Mr. Bennett appeared as a witness
against his companion and "denounced Kaminsky's activities
and declared they were incompatible with tourism."
<end of article>
Boston Globe October 17, 1960 P8
Just Red Propaganda Says Tourist's Wife
Batch, Me. -- [...]
Mrs. Rena Bennett said the Red reports of her husband,
Harvey C., 26, denouncing Mark L. [sic] Kaminsky are in effect
"Harvey just wouldn't act the way they say he did," she
"My husband and his friend are just tourists who went to
Russia to study the language," she said.
"I know Harvey has nothing to do with espionage and neither
does Mr. Kaminsky."
Mrs. Bennett explained the two men, who were Air Force
buddies, went to Russia under fellowships from the Northcraft
Educational Fund of Philadelphia, Pa.
<end of excerpts>
New York Herald Tribune October 19, 1960 P2
Tourist Wasn't Spying, Just Collecting Material
Vienna(AP) -- A young American tourist said today he
was convicted of espionage in the Soviet Union after he
admitted traveling through Russia to gather material for a
book on Soviet preparations for war.
Mark I. Kaminsky, twenty-eight, whose family lives on a
farm near Miles, Mich., arrived here last night from the
Soviet Union, where he received a seven-year sentence Sept.
16 on spy charges.
The Russians suspended the sentence and expelled Mr.
Kaminsky and his traveling companion, Harvey C. Bennett,
twenty-six of Tracy, Calif., who had been held as a witness.
The two Americans came here by way of Czechoslovakia.
They left for home tonight on a plane which made a stop at
"They told me if would be foolish not to plead guilty,"
Mr. Kaminsky told a news conference here today. "They gave
me a lawyer. He was not much assistance, but he cheered me
up. He advised me to confess to the charge wholeheartedly
and tell the court I felt very remorseful. He stressed the
part about 'remorseful' time and again."
"I did not carry out espionage, nor did I confess to
espionage," Mr. Kaminsky said. "I did confess, though, that
I was getting material for a book."
He explained later that under Soviet law it is considered
espionage to gather the material he collected -- "such facts as
that there are soldiers everywhere in Russia." He said the
subject of the survey was: "the Soviet Union talks peace while
preparing for war."
He added that he took pictures of soldiers, radio antennae
and trains, but not for espionage purposes. The Russians
confiscated the photographs.
Mr. Kaminsky, a big heavy-set man in a light blue suit,
said the Russian had treated him well, although they
subjected him to questioning up to eight hours a day.
He said they extracted a promise from him not to write
the book, but he was not certain what he would do now.
"It's not that I think promises made under duress don't
count," he said. "I simply have not made up my mind."
The Soviet news agency Tass said Mr. Kaminsky admitted
gathering information on troop concentration, radio and power
station locations, military camps and their approach roads,
and details about bridges, railway stations and industrial
centers for use in a "slanderous" book about the Soviet
Tass also reported that Mr. Bennett denounced Mr. Kaminsky
as a spy during the trial. Mr. Bennett denied this and said:
"I explained to the Russians that Mark was writing a book and
that was why he gathered information. But I had to agree that
this was not the sort of activity a normal tourist would do."
(At Zurich, upon his arrival with Mr. Bennett, Mr. Kaminsky
said, according to united Press International: "We most
emphatically deny doing anything that a Soviet tourist could
not do in the United States.")
Both said they made the trip under scholarships of $2,000
each from the Northcraft Educational Fund in Philadelphia. An
American lawyer for the fund has refused to name the group's
backers or give the location of its headquarters. Tass called
it a "spy organization."
Mr. Kaminsky said Mr. [Gary] Powers' name came up many times
during the questioning, but the Russians also were clearly
afraid his case might have a bad effect on American tourism in
the Soviet Union.
"The treatment was simply two good," he said. "The guards
fell over themselves to do things for me."
Both Mr. Bennett and Mr. Kaminsky speak Russian, and Mr.
Kaminsky was to have started work as an instructor in the
language this fall at Purdue University in Indiana. Mr.
Bennett said he was graduated from the University of
California at Berkeley.
The two Americans, who entered the Soviet Union on July 27,
were arrested Aug. 25. Mr. Kaminsky's one-day trial was held
"There was a good deal of humor at the trial and the 100
spectators laughed often," Mr. Kaminsky said. He added that he
got into long private discussions with the prosecutor, but the
main topic was: "Who will win the elections, Nixon or Kennedy?"
The Americans were released last Thursday and crossed into
Czechoslovakia yesterday. The American Embassy in Vienna
today persuaded them to tell their side of the story at the
headquarters here of the United States Information Agency.
<end of excerpts>
New York Times October 19, 1960 P16
2 Freed by Soviet Arrive in Vienna
Vienna -- [...]
[...] They [Kaminsky and Bennett] hired in automobile in
Finland and entered the Soviet Union on July 26. They
traveled to Leningrad, Moscow, Minsk, back to Moscow, then
to Kharkov, Kiev and Uzhgorod.
<end of excerpt>
New York Times October 19, 1960 P16
Aid by Fund Confirmed
Philadelphia -- Alexander B. Adelman, lawyer for the
Northcraft Education [sic] Fund, confirmed that the fund had
made grants to Mark I. Kaminsky and Harvey C. Bennett for study
He declined to identify the backers of the fund and referred
questions to the State Department in Washington.
<end of article>
New York Herald Tribune October 21, 1960 P19
2 Tourists In, Deny Soviet Spy Charges
Two Air Force veterans expelled from the Soviet Union for
alleged espionage denied categorically a charge by Drew Pearson
that both had been employed as spies by the Central Intelligence
The pair, Mark I. Kaminsky [...] and Harvey C. Bennett [...]
landed at Idlewild Airport with indefinite answers to newsmen's
Both were unable to describe the operation of the "Northcraft
Educational Fund of Philadelphia," which had awarded each a
$2,000 grant to tour the Soviet Union. The fund is not listed
in the Philadelphia telephone directory or in "The Foundation
Directory," published three months ago with the names of
In his nation-wide column yesterday, Mr. Pearson wrote:
"Both men, though posing as tourists, actually were working
for the Central Intelligence [Agency], and now that they are
safely outside Russia and the Russians know the facts, the
American people should know them, too.
"Both men speak Russian and Bennett was an expert radio
operator. Both had been in the Air Force, though they were not,
as described in news dispatches, Air Force buddies. They never
served together in the same place."
He [Kaminsky] and Mr. Bennett were met at Idlewild by Mr.
Bennett's wife Rena and Miss Airielle Kohn, twenty-five, of
Gross Pointe, Mich., a teacher of German, who said she was Mr.
Kaminsky's friend. Both men refused interviews but were mobbed
by forty newsmen in a wild scene.
Both, however, denied "ever being agents" and Mr. Bennett
denied being a radio operator. He added there had been no
requirements for the travel grant and that he would not have
to write a report of any type. The pair said they met in
Japan in 1954 and had decided to travel to the Soviet Union
to "find out for themselves." Mr. Kaminsky [...] said he hoped
to fill a teaching post at Purdue University. Mr. Bennett
said he had "no idea of the future but would be in touch with
the State Department as soon as possible."
<end of excerpts>
San Francisco Examiner October 22, 1960 P2
Yanks Russ Held Report to State Dept
Washington(UPI) -- Mark Kaminsky and Harvey C. Bennett gave
a full report to the State Department today on their six week
detention in Russia.
Earlier the State Department insisted the two men were
"bonafide tourists," a reply to newspaper speculation that both
were under contract with the Central Intelligence Agency.
Kaminsky [...] and Bennett [...] conferred here with Richard
B. Davis, deputy assistant Secretary of State for European
Affairs and other State Department officials.
<end of excerpts>
The CIA FOIA website has in its searchable database
an article about a program using tourists for
espionage purposes during the period in question
here. It can be found by searching for the exact
phrase "Operation Lincoln" here:
Here are some excerpts:
Title: OPERATION LINCOLN
Pub Date: 12/1/1963
Release Date: 7/30/2001
Keywords: STUDIES IN INTELLIGENCE
Case Number: CSI-2001-00018
Release Decision: RIFPUB
Studies in Intelligence
History of a purposeful legal-
travel collection operation run
from the United States.
by Robert Vandaveer
CIA's organization for the collection of foreign intelligence
from sources in the United Sates has long directed a major
part of its effort toward exploiting the intelligence potential
of U.S. travelers abroad. During the past seven or eight years
of increased tourist travel to the USSR and official exchange
visits of experts in various fields it has devoted a great deal
of time and energy to briefing and debriefing those who may
thus have opportunities to make useful observations, seeking
to exploit these sources of opportunity with reference to targets
of opportunity. A departing traveler would be briefed about what
intelligence was needed in the field of his own specialty; but
beyond this the operation did not go.
After Sputnik I had intensified and focused attention on the
problem of the Soviet long-range missile threat, however, and
the location of missile sites became the number-one priority
collection task of the intelligence community, it was recognized
that such travel had additional potential which could be tapped.
It was decided that travelers whose discretion could be trusted
and whose itineraries looked promising for the purpose would be
so briefed as to be able to recognize and report indications of
missile activity, especially launching sites and production
facilities, without getting themselves in trouble with the Soviet
authorities. In February 1959 the new program, designated
Operation Lincoln, began.
During the 1959 season the program was intentionally
experimental and conservative. At its end 3,836 travelers had
been screened, preliminary assessments made on 612 and
determinate assessments on 159, and 64 been briefed. To keep
the risks within reasonable limits these travelers were limited
to visual, photographic, or conversational observations. They
did not see any long-range missile sites, but they helped map
the deployment of antiaircraft missiles, and a number of their
reports were given high evaluations. Lincoln had not been expected
to provide answers to the major substantive questions confronting
the intelligence community. It had been hoped, however, that its
travelers could discover clues to the presence of missile activity
and secondly, provide operational intelligence for clandestine
operations against likely targets. It was beginning to fulfill
especially the first of these hopes.
The 1960 travel season was expected to produce better reporting,
additional information on suspect areas, full coverage of specified
air routes and the locations of more air defense missile sites.
The Guided Missile Task Force furnished a new handbook with
expanded target information and specific requirements on targets.
But these hopes were dimmed in May by the U-2 incident, which
brought a ban on photography, sketching and note-taking by Lincoln
travelers. Nevertheless, 90 cases were originated during 1960, 55
resulted in travel to the USSR, and 34 of the 55 produced
reporting related to missile requirements. The proportionally high
productivity was attributed to the better understanding of requirements
that resulted from close contact with the Guided
Missile Task Force.
The period May 1960 to May 1961 was an uncertain one for
Operation Lincoln. There were serious doubts among some policy
makers as to the wisdom of utilizing U.S. travelers to the Soviet
Union for intelligence purposes. But the need for information on
the Soviet missile threat continued high, and the operation now
had a good record both for supplying missile intelligence of
significance and for avoiding serious political difficulties. Its
continuance was therefore authorized with tightened-up control of
initial approaches to travelers, coordination of briefings with
the competent clandestine service offices, and a continued ban on
photography, sketching, and note-taking. Plans were laid for
expanded operations in 1961. In April 1961, however, with further
strains in the international climate, the briefing of Lincoln
travelers was prohibited.
<end at excerpts>
It's interesting that this particular progam allegedly
banned note and photo taking after May, 1960. It's also
interesting that this article does NOT mention that
several travelers where accused of spying by the Soviets
and that two were held incommunicado for 6 weeks while
one of them was tried and convicted of espionage. Even if
Bennett and Kaminsky weren't part of this particular
program, it still seems their difficulties would have
impacted "Operation Lincoln."