Soviet agent who saved Krakow in 1945 died over 100 years ago

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The dean of Soviet intelligence, who led the operation to prevent Hitler’s plans to destroy the Polish city of Krakow in January 1945, died at the age of 103, according to the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service.

Alexei Botian, the Soviet agent who thwarted Hitler’s plans to destroy Kraków, has died, Foreign Intelligence said. Monday, February 10, he had blown out 103 candles.

“Alexei Botian is no more,” spokesman Sergei Ivanov told Sputnik.

After Operation Barbarossa against the USSR began in 1941, he entered an intelligence school where he was trained to operate in Nazi-occupied territory.

During the war, he participated in the Battle of Moscow and sabotage operations in Belarus and in various places in Eastern Europe.

The main success of his life

In January 1945, Alexei Botian ordered an operation which he later considered to be the greatest achievement of his life. He managed to find out about German plans to blow up the embankment of a Dunajec water reservoir. According to these plans, the released water was to stop the offensive of Soviet troops. However, this strategy threatened to overwhelm the Polish city of Krakow.
The group, led by Alexei Botian, managed to undermine an explosives and minutions depot located in a Jagiellonian castle in Nowy Sacz, literally shattering German designs.

After the war, he served in foreign intelligence as a secret agent. Later he helped organize the Vympel special operations unit of the KGB of the USSR.



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