Ralph HopeJun 10, 2022
The Grey Men
Pursuing the Stasi into the Present
By 1990 the Berlin Wall had fallen and the East German state security service folded. For forty years, they had amassed more than a billion pages in manila files detailing the lives of their citizens. Almost a hundred thousand Stasi employees, many of them experienced officers with access to highly personal information, found themselves unemployed overnight.
Ralph Hope’s The Grey Men: Pursuing the Stasi Into the Present (Oneworld, 2022) is the story of what they did next.
Former FBI agent Ralph Hope uses present-day sources and access to Stasi records to track and expose ex-officers working everywhere from the Russian energy sector to the police and even the government department tasked with prosecuting Stasi crimes. He examines why the key players have never been called to account and, in doing so, asks if we have really learned from the past at all. He highlights a man who continued to fight the Stasi for thirty years after the Wall fell, and reveals a truth that many today don't want spoken.
This interview was conducted by Dr. Miranda Melcher whose doctoral work focused on post-conflict military integration, understanding treaty negotiation and implementation in civil war contexts, with qualitative analysis of the Angolan and Mozambican civil wars.