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James Bond gave CIA inspiration for real-life gadgets

06-May-2009 • Bond Style

Fictional spy James Bond gave inspiration to real-life US agents, a new book reveals. MI6 hero 007 and his array of clever gadgets helped the Central Intelligence Agency develop many tricks of its own in the 1960s, reports The Sun.

They allowed agents to operate more freely, eavesdrop on foes and influenced the Cold War with the Soviets.

Bond was backed up by gizmo-master Q, who was always experimenting with new inventions.

Q, played by Desmond Llewelyn, dreamed up “impossible” things like bullet-firing pens and GPS systems.

Author Robert Wallace discloses in his book Spycraft that CIA bosses would watch each new movie and ask if the things shown in it could not be done for real.

Wallace, ex-head of the CIA’s Office of Technical Service, says: “A respected designer of equipment said Bond was an inspiration. When new fictional devices were depicted the question would be, ‘Are you sure we can’t do that?’

“Often Q gave Bond a device requiring technology not yet available such as GPS tracking, which was impossible in the real world in the 1960s.

Wallace also tells how the CIA tried out many bizarre ideas of its own, such as an escape and evasion kit designed to be hidden in an agent’s bottom and planting listening bugs in cats. One plan to use bats to carry incendiary bombs resulted in a US air force base burning down.

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