1 Air Division

Spy vs Spy - Assorted Sources

[Soviet Mission]

Wall posters such as this one were prominently displayed in various locations

[Soviet Mission]

Examples of Soviet Mission licence plates

[Soviet Mission]

Wallet sized cards with instructions were issued to RCAF personnel

I served at 2 Wing Grostenquin between September 1960 and July 1964. Those were troubled times. We all remember the Algerian crisis, the Cuban missile crisis, and the JFK assassination. I recall what was supposedly a heavy concentration of Communists in local villages such as Folschviller - so many, that RCAF vehicles were not supposed to travel this route.

Do you remember listening to "Moscow Molly" on the radio? It was somewhat uncanny on how she always managed to play songs for "those poor lonely Canadian Air Force personnel at Grostenquin - and then remind us that a taxi light leading to runway 33 had been burned out for the past two days - and, oh yes "were we ever going to replace this light bulb, as it constituted a safety hazard"? It was not unusual for Molly to welcome a new arrival by name - and even indicate the persons home town back in Canada.

I recall seeing many cardboard displays of the "Soviet Mission Licence plates" as shown above. The rolling countryside around Grostenquin had many great scenic points of view - looking right down to the airfield. We were supoose to note all details and report this to the AFPs on entering the station, whenever we noticed one of those black "Al Capone" look alike Citroens parked by the highway that afforded a good view of the airfield. Those were the days.

As if that wasn't enough - were you aware about any of the following? Better yet - do you have anything that you would like to share with us for this section? Your own "Moscow Molly" story - perhaps?

Click on the description text to view the photograph.
  1. The Matador - April 1955.
    Courtesy Assorted Sources.

  2. The decoy F-86 Sabre - October 1954.
    Courtesy Assorted Sources.

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Updated: July 3, 2004