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Kim Philby returns to an MI6 posting in Beirut. He contacts the KGB, but the net is closing in. Read by Simon Russell Beale.

With access to newly released MI5 files and previously unseen family papers, and with the cooperation of former officers of MI6 and the CIA, author Ben Macintyre unlocks the last great secret of the Cold War.

Kim Philby was the most notorious British defector and Soviet mole in history. Agent, double agent, traitor and enigma, he betrayed every secret of Allied operations to the Russians in the early years of the Cold War. Philby's two closest friends in the intelligence world, Nicholas Elliott of MI6 and James
Jesus Angleton the CIA intelligence chief, thought they knew Philby better than anyone - only to discover they had not known him at all.

This is a story of intimate duplicity; of loyalty, trust and treachery, class and conscience; of an ideological battle waged by men with cut-glass accents and well-made suits in the comfortable clubs and restaurants of London and Washington; of male friendships forged, and then systematically betrayed.

In the fourth episode of A Spy Among Friends, Nicholas Elliott secures Kim Philby's return to MI6 and a posting in Beirut. Philby makes contact with Moscow Centre, but now the net is finally closing in.

Read by: Simon Russell Beale
Producer: David Roper
A Heavy Entertainment production for BBC Radio 4

15 minutes

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