Agents: The FBI and GPU Infiltration of the Trotskyist Movement uses archival evidence to shed new light on how the governments of the United States and the Soviet Union spied on and infiltrated the world Trotskyist movement from the 1930s through the 1980s.
Beginning in the 1930s, both governments succeeded in placing high-level agents within the American Trotskyist Socialist Workers Party (SWP). Through their network of spies, the Stalinist secret police—the GPU—were able to orchestrate the assassination of Leon Trotsky, co-leader of the Russian Revolution, in Mexico City in August 1940. The FBI used their network of undercover agents to prepare the conviction of 18 members of the SWP in 1941 on charges of sedition, under the recently passed Smith Act. In both cases, the infiltration continued well past the early 1940s.
Agents documents the Security and the Fourth International investigation, launched in 1975 by the International Committee of the Fourth International (ICFI), to expose the GPU network which murdered Trotsky. Security and the FI uncovered state infiltration by US government agents remaining within the SWP. Although the SWP became aware, as early as 1947, that their party had been infiltrated by the GPU, they failed to carry out a real investigation, and instead conducted a 40-year cover-up, protecting the same agents who had caused untold damage to the fight for world socialist revolution.