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In the waning years of the Soviet Union scientific research falls far behind. Vasili, head of KGB, tries to gain Western knowledge by espionage. He persuades Dmitri, a physicist, to defect to the USA. Dmitri obtains a position at NSF and later at FermiLab, while remaining entangled in the KGB web. After the disintegration of the Soviet Union Vasili becomes very powerful and wants to strengthen science in the new Russia. He asks Dmitri to return home, because Russian knowledge needs upgrading. Dmitri is appointed director of IHEP in Moscow. He is not successful, because the best Russian scientists have emigrated to the West. Blackmail and intimidation pursue him. To escape Vasili’s influence, Dmitri accepts a job at CERN in Geneva, where the largest particle accelerator in the world, the LHC, is under construction. Vasili now wants revenge. When he does not succeed in obtaining Western knowledge through espionage he wants to ruin Dmitri and to obstruct research at CERN.