The spy defected from Russia after working as a double agent for the U.S. for several years, passing an estimated 5,000 secret SVR cables to the FBI along with more than 100 Russian intelligence reports, according to one U.S. intelligence official cited by Earley.
Although a notoriously private person, Tretyakov shared some of his secrets in the late 90′s when he published “Comrade J: The Untold Secrets of Russia’s Master Spy In America After The End Of The Cold War“.
Although his death occurred near the middle of June, it wasn’t announced until July 9th on Earley’s website, reportedly because his family wished to conduct an autopsy and prevent the Russian government from using his death for propaganda purposes.
The high-ranking defector repeatedly warned Americans that Russia’s core government had never abandoned the Cold War and still aimed to destroy the United States. In his later years, he said his main goal was to “wake up” the American people to the deadly threat posed to them by the former Soviet Union.
Prolific scholar and author J.R. Nyquist penned a fitting tribute to Tretyakov in his weekly column, writing “Tretyakov tried to warn the American people, but the American people didn’t want to hear. Despite the fact that he was the subject of a best-selling book, Tretyakov’s most important message was ignored by nearly everybody.”
Nyquist’s tome was an appropriate literary representation of the media blackout imposed on Tretyakov’s warnings, symptomatic of a larger Western tendency to accept the Russian government as peaceful and their intentions as benign.
Tretyakov joins a litany of others who fled the former Soviet Union in order to warn the American people about the impending attack planned for them by the Russian government. Among others were Alexander Litvinenko, a Russian spy who was poisoned soon after speaking out, along with Anatoliy Golitsyn, Yuri Bezmenov, and Jan Sejna, to name a few.
Speaking as the man who has become the face of the anti-Putin and pro-American defense movement, Nyquist ended his tribute with these solemn words:
“I am obligated to say something, because nobody else seems willing to step up: The Russian government seeks to destroy the United States and dominate Europe. If we want to honor the memory of Sergei Tretyakov, we need to honor his message.”