The Oldest Record of Espionage

The “earliest surviving record of espionage dates from the time of Pharaoh Rameses’ war with the Hittites and the battle of Kadesh. (c.1274 BC)…The Hittite king Muwatallis sent two spies into the Egyptian camp posing as deserters to convince pharaoh that the Hittite army was still quite distant. Rameses believed their story and unwittingly allowed part of his army to march into a Hittite ambush. Fortunately for the pharaoh, he captured two more Hittite spies and had his officers interrogate them … the Hittites spies revealed that an ambush had been set … Ramses was therefore able to bring up reserves and avert disaster at what became known as the battle of Kadesh.”

From: The Enemy Within: A History of Espionage, Thomas Crowdy

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