What an unusual artifact!
We’ve all watched spy shows like The Man from U.N.C.L.E. and wondered if all the crazy gadgets were actually real. At the International Spy Museum in Washington, D.C. you can peruse through many such items, like spy cameras, pen guns, and one rather curious set of objects that was once issued to CIA agents during the height of the Cold War.
In the video below from Atlas Obscura Dr. Vince Houghton explains the need for, and design features of, a tiny escape and tool kit that was meant to be inserted rectally. In the days before scanners and metal detectors, a kit like this might well have gone completely unnoticed should an agent have been captured. Inside are a file and lock-picking tools among other small instruments. We have to wonder how effective some of these tools would have been at such a diminutive size. However, the case is uncomfortably not quite as small as we might have guessed. Have a look for yourself below.