Friday, July 6, 2007

My Grandfather and Sidney Reilly, the real James Bond

I found something worthy of the X-Files while having
a long night of insomnia, and doing some reading.

I literally bumped into a weird tidbit of family memorabilia,
about my grandfather. How weird to have a grandfather
that was somewhat nefarious, mysterious, and now
associated with the "Ace of Spies" Sidney Reilly, the
original James Bond.

I never knew my grandfather, since I was born after he
died. My mom was his youngest, and I was her youngest.
I knew he was born in Nizhny Novgorod in Russia, and
his brother was the Bolshevik, Yakov Sverdlov. He came
to the USA in 1916, which always seemed weird to me,
since, you'd think grandfather would stick around for
Red October. Turned out, he was helping to finance

(Here's a statue of Yakov Sverdlov, my grandfather's
infamous brother. He's buried in
the Kremlin.)

Instead of fighting for the Revolution, my grandfather,
Veniamin, who I learned was called, "Benny", emigrated
from Liverpool. I wondered why he was in England.
Now I know. He was allied with this Sidney Reilly.

We have Benny's documents from Ellis Island. Far from
the peasant proletariat, he travelled First Class, and
gave his NYC residence as another 4 star establishment.
It always confounded me. But, the puzzle is starting
to make more sense. This piece was totally amazing
and mind-boggling. I'm still kind of stunned, since
I never expected to read what i did!

It's odd, because, I've always been attracted to
reading about Sidney Reilly, and I never knew
why. I thought it was because of my last name
being Bond...!! Seriously, I literally was stunned
to read my grandfather's name associated as
his partner. WTH????

Now, I learned through Peter Spence's book on
Sidney Reilly, that my grandfather was an arms
dealer, as well. What a man. (My dad calls him
the most evil man who ever lived. I tried to tell
dad about the Reilly connection, and he said
I shouldn't speak about my grandfather because
he was a schmuck.) My poor mother didn't
even know her dad. He left her, after my grandmother
mysteriously died. Now, I'm wondering if he killed
her? I'm named after her. Her name was Mary.

MI5 conducted an investigation of my grandfather
in 1921. (For good reason, I think.)

It's so weird to have a family that's used in literally
all antisemitic propaganda. Hitler used them as
negative examples. What's worse is that it seems
that they were pretty worthy of the disdain.
While one of my mom's uncles was responsible for
ordering the Tsar's family's deaths, her dad was
a double agent...arms dealer..

My head swims.... omg.

How can grace bless these genes? By the blood of
our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Here's the book:
Trust No One: The Secret World of Sidney Reilly (Hardcover)

These are the indexed pages with my grandfather,
and his brothers in them:
1. on Page 85:
"... of very uncertain allegiances. Another Bolshevik of sorts, with whom the Ace-of-Spies rubbed elbows in prewar Petersburg, was Veniamin ("Benny") Sverdlov. ..."
2. on Page 131:
"... Novyi Mir, a Russian radical paper published in New York's Greenwich Village. Also, among A. Weinstein's London cronies was Benny Sverdlov, ..."
3. on Page 144:
"... was taking off, Reilly orchestrated yet another rifle-related scheme involving Flint Arms. His front men in this endeavor were Benny Sverdlov, ..."
4. on Page 153:
"... 1916 with the arrival of Lt. Zinovii Peshkov. The latter, as mentioned, was the brother of both Benny and Yakov Sverdlov. Enlisting in the French Army at the beginning of the war, Peshkov had lost an arm and thereafter took up ..."
5. on Page 206:
"... 1918 he transferred to the Moscow security command. His subsequent rise had much to do with the patronage of Yakov Sverdlov, head of the Soviet's Central Executive Committee (VTsIK). ..."
6. on Page 207:
"... One was twenty-five-year-old Olga Starzhevskaia, a staffer in the Soviet's All-Russian Central Executive Committee (VTsIK), Sverdlov's bailiwick.44 That put her inside the Kremlin. Sidney seduced her and arranged for her to move into a love nest ..."
7. on Page 399:
"... Zhivotovskii, Jerome Landfield, William McAdoo, Benny Sverdlov and many others. He was never able to piece together this puzzle but became convinced that Reilly and Wiseman had ..."
8. on Page 405:
"... had either been the objects of SIS investigation or informants in their own rights' The same was true for Benny Sverdlov who had been the target of an MI5 probe on 1921. ..."
9. from Index:

Check me out!

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