Secrets of the Dead: Umbrella Assassin

Secrets of the Dead - Umbrella AssassinOn Monday, September 11, 1978, Bulgarian émigré, writer, and broadcast journalist Georgi Markov died in London at the age of 49. A political murder, his death remains one of the Cold War's greatest mysteries.

Markov was an acclaimed literary figure in Bulgaria before he defected to the West in 1969. Later, he succeeded in getting official permission to leave Bulgaria. After arriving in England, he joined the British Broadcasting Company (BBC) and became a freelance scriptwriter for Radio Free Europe (RFE) in Munich, Germany.

On June 8, 1975, he contributed his first freelance program to RFE, called "The Debts of Contemporary Bulgarian Literature." For the next three years, he wrote more than 130 Sunday-evening programs for his series called IN ABSENTIA: REPORTS ABOUT BULGARIA. These programs not only covered cultural life in Bulgaria but also revealed the otherwise hidden lifestyles of leading regime figures, especially Communist Party leader Todor Zhivkov, who reportedly appealed to the KGB for help in silencing Markov.

Two failed attempts to poison Markov followed. But on September 7, 1978, while Markov was waiting for a bus, he felt a sudden stinging pain in the back of his thigh. He turned and saw a man bending to pick up a dropped umbrella. The man apologized and departed. By evening, Markov developed a high fever. He was taken to a hospital and treated for blood poisoning. But his condition worsened, and three days later he died.

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Ratings: 7.75/10from 8 users.

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12 Comments / User Reviews

  1. Callie

    My grandad drove the taxi

  2. Doc

    Interesting, enthralling and pretty exciting

  3. mspbear

    yes - intriguing and interesting. It scared me to hear of terrorism back then even though i am not naive. It frightens me on how easy it is to kill someone so easily and without evidence. It scares me to publish such things so some lunatic can do so. And I felt bad for this man and his family.

  4. eireannach666

    they really "Stuck it to him". id say........ that just goes to show you that what you say can get you killed just as fast as what you do. its a shame or blunder rather , that the DRs didnt look more at the wound on his leg before diagnoses ..... had they of looked a little closer earlier , they may have seen the ball or maybe even the poison. i wonder if they did any blood work on him.?? or why not ?? he obviously said something about the wound and that soon after he started feelin ill. i wonder why they were so quick to throw aside this however small but huge clue....?? im no DR but when someone tells you something like that you should at leat take alook instead of dismissing it as paranoia or unrelated........ thats too bad..... ill bet if it happened in the USA someones shyte hole would have been a sued SOB...... only in America..... lol......

  5. Eff

    Literally: a pain in the ass! OUCH! Where can I buy these mini-ball brollys? I need to give my cheerfully loathed inlaws something for next Christmas....

  6. Costakidd

    Its a mystery thriller. All real life history documented. Interesting.

  7. Hilliard

    @mayvee seriously? "allegedly" ?? wow... Also I'm sorry you cannot interpret how some people speak... Whew, I'm not even going to get into this..

  8. mayvee

    the doctor who allegedly examined the guy says (near 4 mn 15 sec) that his swollen thigh could have been the result of an insect bite or a sharp metal object. Very professional he sounds, doesnt he?

  9. Stoke City

    very good doc. i will definitely recommend it.

    thanks as always for the link.

  10. charlesovery

    well done!

  11. carlos1234

    it didnt sound very interesting but once i started watching it i realized i had finished it :) its iteresting

  12. jamie

    intrigue! kept my interest.