Magnificent Bastard: As ever, Special Circumstances, and especially their main agent. That drone? Yeah...the same drone that blackmailed "Morat", is also his helper in this...Special Circumstances planned the WHOLE thing.
Maybe even more than that. Contact have apparently known about the Empire for 73 years. Gurgeh is 60. He may have been specially genetically engineered and/or nurtured for the purpose of playing Azad. He mentions the possibility himself towards the end. SC deny it naturally.