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Spy Valley: An Engineer's Nuclear Betrayal

Brazen

“The past is never dead. It's not even past.”

Silicon Valley is an espionage innovator—it has been since its inception. During the dawn of the high-tech age, an engineer named James Harper begins his industrious climb. But as Silicon Valley blossoms into what it is today, so too does the dark side of all this newfound wealth and ambition—right as the cold war reaches its final crescendo.

As Harper works to build his fortune, his ambition endangers his nation’s safety. He sells nuclear secrets to the Soviet Bloc—intelligence that might still help Moscow in a nuclear exchange today. It would become the chase of a lifetime for San Francisco’s FBI spy hunters.

In this series, we’ll walk you through a maze. One of nuclear spying, technology theft, and double agents, and the too wild-to-be-believed events that placed James Harper at the center of this story.

And you’ll hear that story from James Harper–the Soviet Bloc spy–himself.

Spy Valley is a Project Brazen production. For more fearless storytelling, search for the Brazen channel on Apple Podcasts or visit brazen.fm, home to all our podcasts, documentaries and newsletters. At Brazen, we show you how the world really works – from espionage and corruption to deal-making and organised crime, we’ll take you inside stories from hidden worlds.

Don’t stay in the dark. Subscribe to Brazen+ on Apple Podcasts or at brazen.fm/plus and get exclusive bonus episodes for Spy Valley and all our shows, as well as ad-free listening and early access to new podcasts. For the latest from Brazen delivered straight to your inbox, subscribe to our newsletters at brazen.fm/newsletters.

Copyright © 2024 Brazen

“The past is never dead. It's not even past.”

Silicon Valley is an espionage innovator—it has been since its inception. During the dawn of the high-tech age, an engineer named James Harper begins his industrious climb. But as Silicon Valley blossoms into what it is today, so too does the dark side of all this newfound wealth and ambition—right as the cold war reaches its final crescendo.

As Harper works to build his fortune, his ambition endangers his nation’s safety. He sells nuclear secrets to the Soviet Bloc—intelligence that might still help Moscow in a nuclear exchange today. It would become the chase of a lifetime for San Francisco’s FBI spy hunters.

In this series, we’ll walk you through a maze. One of nuclear spying, technology theft, and double agents, and the too wild-to-be-believed events that placed James Harper at the center of this story.

And you’ll hear that story from James Harper–the Soviet Bloc spy–himself.

Spy Valley is a Project Brazen production. For more fearless storytelling, search for the Brazen channel on Apple Podcasts or visit brazen.fm, home to all our podcasts, documentaries and newsletters. At Brazen, we show you how the world really works – from espionage and corruption to deal-making and organised crime, we’ll take you inside stories from hidden worlds.

Don’t stay in the dark. Subscribe to Brazen+ on Apple Podcasts or at brazen.fm/plus and get exclusive bonus episodes for Spy Valley and all our shows, as well as ad-free listening and early access to new podcasts. For the latest from Brazen delivered straight to your inbox, subscribe to our newsletters at brazen.fm/newsletters.

Copyright © 2024 Brazen

Live Bonus: Producing Spy Valley

Thumbnail for "Live Bonus: Producing Spy Valley".
August 22, 20231hr 3min

In this bonus episode, we bring you an intimate conversation with Zach Dorfman, an award-winning intelligence and national security journalist and host of the podcast Spy Valley: An Engineer's Nuclear Betrayal. Recorded live at the Podcast Garage at KQED in San Francisco earlier this month, the conversation delved into the making of the podcast series and featured audio clips from the show. The discussion was moderated by Ian Enright, founder and CEO of Goat Rodeo and an executive producer of Spy Valley.

Spy Valley is a new six-part podcast series from Project Brazen that explores the story of James Harper, a Silicon Valley engineer turned nuclear spy during the Cold War.

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ABOUT THE SPEAKERS:

Zach Dorfman is a National Security Writer and the Writer and Host of Spy Valley. He was previously a National Security Correspondent for Yahoo News and a Senior Staff Writer at the Aspen Institute. His work has appeared at Foreign Policy, Politico, The Atlantic, the Wall Street Journal, and elsewhere. He was also a Senior Fellow at the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs, where he spent over half a decade as a full-time staff editor. Dorfman is a past winner of the Gerald R. Ford Prize for Defense Reporting and a Livingston Award finalist.

Ian Enright is the founder and CEO of Goat Rodeo, a creative podcasting company. As a senior audio producer and creative executive, Goat Rodeo’s work includes award winning and groundbreaking podcasts such as The Report, Allies, Cornbread Mafia, and Long Shadow. He is an executive producer on Spy Valley.


Spy Valley is a Project Brazen production. Subscribe to Brazen+ on Apple Podcasts or at brazen.fm/plus and get exclusive bonus episodes for Spy Valley and all our shows, as well as ad-free listening and early access to new podcasts.

For more fearless storytelling, search for the Brazen channel on Apple Podcasts or visit brazen.fm, home to all our podcasts, documentaries and newsletters. At Brazen, we show you how the world really works – from espionage and corruption to deal-making and organised crime, we’ll take you inside stories from hidden worlds.