On January 26, 1983, the GDR Ministry for State Security instructed border personnel to closely monitor and report on my travel to and from the GDR, also to prevent me from bringing into or taking out of the country any illegal manuscripts or printed materials. The surveillance request, valid initially until January 31, 1984, would be extended later on until March 30, 1987. This one-page document, which provides the justification for and objectives of the surveillance, has been reproduced in its entirety below.
COUNCIL OF MINISTERS Secret!
OF THE GERMAN DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC
Ministry for State Security
Service units codes:
Main Directorate/Main Department/In-house: Dept. BV/V XX
Staff member Pönig [initialed]
S u r v e i l l a n c e R e q u e s t
2. First nameRichard
3. Date of birth1/23/43
4. Place of birthMaryland
6. ProfessionProfessor of German Studies
7. Place of residenceOberlin/ Ohio USA
Street102 Shipherd Circle
Person is registered in Dept. XII. 10: 276532
Justification of the operative necessity of the surveillance request, taking into account the information on the other side of this page:
Zipser seeks contacts with hostile-negative creative artists in the GDR, in order to misuse them in non-socialist regions through their literary publications that are directed against the GDR.
1. Immediately notify the service unit that gave the order when the surveillance target enters and leaves the country, including license plate number and type of automobile being used, documentation of travel documents.
2. Transmission of the personal data and documentation of travel documents of the persons accompanying the surveillance target, including license plate number and type of automobile being used.
3. Customs inspection for the purpose of detecting and preventing the illegal import and export of manuscripts and other written documents.
The surveillance target last entered the GDR from Westberlin on 1/19/1982.
The surveillance is in effect [until] 1/31/84.