Air Intelligence
in the Cold War

A Research Project  ©  Dick van der Aart


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About the author and researcher

Dick van der Aart is a professional Dutch journalist and aviation historian. He retired from NOS Television News in 2006, where he worked for many years as Foreign News Editor and Managing Editor for the main news bulletin and live current affairs programs.

Since 1965 he has written many articles for aviation and defence magazines in the Netherlands and was co-author of several books. His interest and research have always been focused on aerial reconnaissance, Cold War incidents and air intelligence.

During the Cold War years 1970-1991 he was Defence Correspondent for the Dutch national newspaper NRC Handelsblad and contributed many articles on military, aerospace and intelligence developments.

In 1984 he wrote his first book, Spionage vanuit de Lucht, about secret NATO and Soviet intelligence flights during the Cold War.
This book was also published in Great-Britain and the United States as Aerial Espionage - Secret Reconnaissance Flights by East and West. Under the same title it was also translated into Japanese and published in Japan.

His next book was MiG's op de vlucht (MiGs on the run, Pilot Defectors in the Cold War), the first book about pilot defectors covering the whole spectrum of aerial defections worldwide since WW2.

In October 2016 he wrote the English language book - The Secret MiGs of Bornholm - about the Polish pilots who defected with their MiG-15 fighters to the Danish island of Bornholm and to Sweden. Many fascinating historical details about the covert technical intelligence examination of these fighters- never published before - came from declassified Secret and Top Secret documents.

His latest book, De Spionnen van Aeroflot, published in november 2018, is about spyflights by civil aircraft of the Soviet airline Aeroflot and other airlines of the Communist Bloc during the Cold War.

Dick van der Aart is a board member of the Netherlands Intelligence Studies Association NISA, founded in 1991 as a independent scholarly organization to promote and assist research into the history of intelligence and counter-intelligence. Members of NISA ( are active and former members of the Dutch and EU intelligence and security services and related organizations, academics, researchers and journalists.

     The author can be contacted at 






© 2009-2020 DICK VAN DER AART  -  WWW.AIR-INTEL.NL - 9 September 2020