November 15 2022 — Rudolf Ivanovich Abel, real name Vilyam “Willie” Genrikhovich Fisher, (July 11, 1903 – November 15, 1971) was a Soviet intelligence officer. He adopted his alias when arrested on charges of conspiracy by FBI agents in 1957. He was exchanged for captured American U-2 pilot Francis Gary Powers. Follow us on Twitter: @INTEL_TODAY
Fisher was born in the United Kingdom to Russian émigré parents. He moved to Russia in the 1920s, and served in the Soviet military before undertaking foreign service as a radio operator in Soviet intelligence in the late 1920s and early 1930s.
He later served in an instructional role before taking part in intelligence operations against the Germans during World War II.
After the war, he began working for the KGB, which sent him to the United States where he worked as part of a spy ring based in New York City.
In 1957, the U.S. Federal Court in New York convicted Fisher on three counts of conspiracy as a Soviet spy for his involvement in what became known as the Hollow Nickel Case and sentenced him to 30 years imprisonment at Atlanta Federal Penitentiary, Georgia.
He served just over four years of his sentence before he was exchanged for captured American U-2 pilot Francis Gary Powers.
Back in the Soviet Union, he lectured on his experiences. He died on November 15 1971 at the age of 68.
In 1990 the USSR released a stamp depicting Rudolf Abel as part of series: “Intelligence Agents”.
In Popular Culture
In Steven Spielberg’s 2015 film Bridge of Spies, Fisher/Abel is portrayed by Mark Rylance.
For his performance, Rylance won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor and the BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role.
Soviet KGB Spy Colonel Rudolph Abel Captured in 1957, Real Footage (Silent Film)
BRIDGE OF SPIES ESPIONAGE CASE RUDOLF ABEL “THE HOLLOW COIN” FBI 88374
Bridge of Spies — Official Trailer
A dramatic thriller set against the backdrop of a series of historic events, BRIDGE OF SPIES tells the story of James Donovan (Hanks), a Brooklyn lawyer who finds himself thrust into the centre of the Cold War when the CIA sends him on the near-impossible task to negotiate the release of a captured American U-2 pilot.
Screenwriters Matt Charman and Ethan Coen & Joel Coen have woven this remarkable experience in Donovan’s life into a story inspired by true events that captures the essence of a man who risked everything and vividly brings his personal journey to life.
Rudolf Abel — Wikipedia
On This Day — Remembering Russian Spy Rudolf Ivanovich Abel (July 11, 1903 – November 15, 1971)