or more than 20 years now, Vladimir Putin has been on the headlines of well-known media outlets about his presence within the political scene. What they didn’t know is that Putin was within the political scene long before he even thought of entering Kremlin. Many people are not aware of Putin’s past within the KGB (Soviet Secret Service) during the Soviet era.
Can you Find Putin?
The photo that you see above was taken in 1988 by former White House photographer Pete Souza. He worked as an official White House photographer from 1983 until the end of Reagan’s administration. During that period of time, he would take photos of key moments and moments that weren’t so important but had something special, such as the photo you see above.
At the time, no one saw anything out of the ordinary within the photo, not even in 1993 when the photo got published in a book entitled “Unguarded Moments”, a selection of photos from Souza’s career as an official photographer for the White House. The photo shows Ronald Reagan extending his hand to a young boy whilst he was accompanying Mikhail Gorbachev on a tour of Red Square in 1988.
Some years later after the book was published, some people sent him letters pointing out that the man with the camera within the photo is in fact Vladimir Putin in disguise as a tourist. Souza only then connected the dots, as at the time when the photo was publicly published, no one knew who Vladimir Putin was.
“Some ten years later, I received a random letter in the mail from someone who asked if I knew I had captured a picture of Reagan and Vladimir Putin as shown on page 145 in my book. (Putin had by then become the president of Russia). I was astounded by this letter!” (Quote by Pete Souza)
Souza was even interviewed by NPR about this event. This was the first time it was publicly announced that Putin was actually within the photo. Despite no official verification, everyone agreed that Putin was in the photo. Officials from Kremlin who listened to the NPR interview had immediately denied the fact, but was this done to protect counter-intelligence operations from the Soviet era?
Is it actually Putin?
In 2009 when Souza traveled with President Obama to Russia to meet Dmitry Medvedev (former President of Russia), no Russian officials commented about Putin being in the picture. Neither did Souza push his luck to ask around, as he would have gotten himself detained, or at least that is what he was told.
Vladimir Putin was actually in the KGB during 1988, but from public sources, we know that he was stationed in East Germany during that time. This could actually be a cover-up story to hide his real mission, especially taking into consideration his prior studies within international relations. The past is the past, although we all know that the KGB had done really unethical things, to say the least. What would reveal what was done in the past change much of our present or future? So if that is truly Putin, why hide it?
The immediate response of someone who wants to protect intelligence is denial and unresponsiveness. What is interesting is that throughout the years, Souza kept receiving letters about this from readers of his book. He even received a postcard to his home address with the photo in which the tourist (allegedly Putin) was circled and an arrow pointing to the word “Spy”. At the back of the card, it was written “Secret Service”.
The photo became once again viral on social media lately and everyone seems to believe it is actually Vladimir Putin. The only official verification that could be received is from the man himself who has remained silent about the photo. Pete Souza believes it is Vladimir Putin and this is the man who saw more at the time than just taking the photo.
Taking into consideration that the U.S. president would visit Moscow during 1988, the Soviet Union would place not one but at least three spies on him. There aren’t any official records of someone saying that they saw him in East Germany during 1988, so there is a possibility that it actually could be him. What do you think?