World War II Spies and secret agents - Stories and book reviews.
Latest hand-picked WWII news.
Nazi spy who killed himself after failing in his mission to assassinate Winston Churchill
A Nazi spy who killed himself after supposedly being sent to the UK on a mission to assassinate Winston Churchill will finally get a headstone on his unmarked grave. William Ter Braak shot himself in the head in 1941 fearing he was going to be exposed after spending several months spying on Britain for Hitler. The death of the Dutch-born agent was covered up by the wartime British authorities who feared a public scandal and he was buried secretly in an unmarked grave. He is believed to have been parachuted into Britain on a mission to assassinate the wartime leader in 1940.
Enigma before Bletchley: the German spies who betrayed Hitler
Written by Paul Paillole, the head of French Secret Services in the Second World War, The Spy in Hitler`s Inner Circle tells the story of Hans-Thilo Schmidt, France's German spy embedded in the very heart of the Third Reich. The intelligence he provided helped to decode the Enigma machine at Bletchley and ultimately contributed to the collapse of Hitler's Third Reich.
Classic turn-based strategy games: Conflict-Series
If you like classic turn-based PC war games and legendary strategy board games make sure to check out the highly rated Conflict-series for Android. Some of the WWII Campaigns include Axis Balkan Campaign, D-Day 1944, Operation Barbarossa, France 1940, Kursk 1943, Market Garden, Iwo Jima, Okinawa, Rommel's North African campaign, and the Battle of Bulge. In addition to WWII some other time periods include Korean War, American Civil War, First World War and American Revolutionary War. The more complex campaigns like Operation Sea Lion, Invasion of Norway, and Invasion of Japan 1945, include Naval element and handling logistics of supply flow.
(available on Google Play & Amazon App Store since 2011)
Double agent Juan Pujol Garcia got Iron Cross from Germans and Brtish named him a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire
In 1941, Juan Pujol Garcia approached intelligence officers at the British embassy in Madrid to `offer his services` in the war against the Nazis. To the men and women of Britain`s security services, it was not a particularly compelling offer. In the words of Amyas Godfrey, a British expert on military history, [Pujol] `was no James Bond -- he was a balding, boring, unsmiling little man.` British intelligence rebuffed the former chicken farmer's offer. This did not deter Pujol's aspirations; instead he decided to establish himself as a false German spy in order to offer his services as a double agent to the British.
WWII-era poisonous gas, fire bombs and ammunition still rotting in German waters
Millions of tons of poisonous gas, fire bombs and ammunition continue to rot in the waters off the coast of Germany. They contain deadly toxins, which are seeping into the environment.
Eric Erickson was a Nazi collaborator who became the greatest American spy of WWII
In 1941, the Brooklyn-born Eric Erickson was a millionaire oil mogul who volunteered for a dangerous mission inside the Third Reich: locating the top-secret synthetic oil plants that kept the German war machine running. To fool the Nazis, Erickson played the role of a collaborator. He hung a portrait of Hitler in his apartment and `disowned` his Jewish best friend, then flew to Berlin, where he charmed Heinrich Himmler and signed lucrative oil deals. All the while, he was visiting the oil refineries and passing their coordinates to Allied Bomber Command. After the war, Erickson's was revealed as a secret agent and received the Medal of Freedom for his bravery.
Nazi family living on Pearl Harbor and serving as German spies aided Japanese on their attack
It is not well known that a family of German spies helped set up the sneak attack on Pearl Harbor and made it much simpler and much more deadly. A German Nazi named Bernard Julius Otto Kuhn (Kuehn) moved his wife and two children to Hawaii in August of 1935 with the mission to spy upon the Americans at their military installation in Pearl Harbor. The family had been contracted as agents of the Japanese government with the assistance of the Nazi Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels. The family was paid quite well for the valuable intelligence they provided about the U.S. military presence in Oahu.
Agent Garbo: How a Barcelona chicken farmer fooled the Nazis and saved D-Day
"Tangle within tangle, plot and counterplot, ruse and treachery, cross and double-cross, true agent, false agent, double agent, gold and steel, the bomb, the dagger and the firing party, were interwoven in many a texture so intricate as to be incredible and yet true." That's how Winston Churchill described the deception practiced by British WWII intelligence services, and it's also a solid summary of the tale told by Stephan Talty in "Agent Garbo: The Brilliant, Eccentric Secret Agent Who Tricked Hitler and Saved D-Day." Juan Pujol Garcia, a failed chicken farmer from Barcelona, became - with his MI5 case officer, Tommy Harris - the perpetrator of a massive ruse against the Nazis.
Nazis had spy in MI5 but failed to use him, files in the British National Archives reveal
The treachery of the first German agent to penetrate MI5, a Dutchman who fooled Britain's security and intelligence throughout WWII, is revealed in the recently released files. Folkert van Koutrik was taken on by MI6 before the war. He was later recruited by Germany's military intelligence service, the Abwehr, which gave him the codename Walbach. After Nazi Germany invaded the Netherlands in May 1940, Van Koutrik left for Britain and approached MI5 for a job. So convincing was he that a British security official said: "His great success has been as an agent... he has always been very resourceful and I should say that he has always displayed perfectly genuine faithfulness."
Russian spy Gevork Vartanyan, who allegedly stopped Otto Skorzeny from killing Stalin, Churchill, and Roosevelt at the Tehran conference, dies
One of the legendary Soviet WWII agents, who infiltrated a British spy school and assisted in the historic Tehran conference, has passed away at 87. Gevork Vartanyan, working under the codename Amir, famously in 1942 managed to attend an entire course at a British training course for spies in Tehran who Britain then wanted to send all over the Soviet Union. Vartanyan also helped ensure security at the 1943 conference in Tehran between the Allied "Big Three" of Soviet tyrant Joseph Stalin, British PM Winston Churchill and US president FD Roosevelt that started to draw up the map of postwar Europe.
Arthur Owens became Britain's first double agent in World War II
When MI5 first set eyes upon him, Welsh electrical engineer Arthur Owens was described as "an underfed Cardiff type". But the was a complex man who become Britain's first double agent who helped to crack Germany's Enigma military codes. Given the codename Johnny O'Brien by the Nazis he helped MI5 - who gave his the codename Agent Snow - capture numerous Nazi spies, including all those dropped by parachute or boat in England in 1940. "Snow - The Double Life Of A World War II Spy" by Nigel West and Madoc Roberts recounts his journey into the world of spying.
10 spies who aren`t household names: Nancy Wake karate-chopped a Nazi guard to death
(1) In May 1940, Nancy Wake threw herself into the WWII resistance movement, helping thousands escape to Spain. She flirted with German soldiers to waltz through checkpoints. In 1943, aware that her hunters were closing in, Wake fled to Britain, where she was trained as a spy and guerilla operative. In April 1944 she parachuted into France to coordinate attacks on German troops prior to the D-Day, leading a band of 7,000 resistance fighters. During the violent months preceding the liberation of Paris, Wake killed a German guard with a karate chop to the neck, executed a female German spy, shot her way out of roadblocks and biked 70 hours through Nazi-controlled zones to deliver radio codes for the Allies.
Japan's Pearl Harbor spy Tadashi Morimura sent Tokyo the cable giving the all-clear to launch the Pearl Harbor attack
There are moments when an individual holds history in his hands, and 1941 was a year of such moments. Takeo Yoshikawa knew that this was his. Late in the evening of December 6, 1941, Yoshikawa sat at his desk in Honolulu's Japanese Consulate. The vice consul prepared to send out his final message to Tokyo. U.S. military intelligence had tracked Morimura's espionage activities. One officer complained that Morimura raced unimpeded "all over the goddamn place." Word directly from Washington, though, ordered officers not to arrest spies to avoid undermining the loyalty of the islands' large dual-nationality population.
Documentary film "Garbo the Spy" recounts the life of WWII double agent Juan Pujol Garcia
Double agent Juan Pujol Garcia - known by the British codename Garbo and the German codename Arabel - was one of the most important figures of the Second World War. He had a key role in the Operation Fortitude, deceiving the Nazis about the date and location of the D-Day invasion. Skillfully playing both sides - at one point he had 27 made-up agents in his spy network - he was awarded an honorary knighthood by the British and the Iron Cross by the Nazis. After the war Garcia faked his own death and moved to Venezuela. But how do you make a documentary film about such an elusive figure?
The Dangerous Otto Katz: The Many Lives of a Soviet Spy by Jonathan Miles (book review)
Otto Katz operated from the 1920s until his execution by the Communist authorities in 1952. His job was the dissemination of information, and disinformation. Katz was not typical Communist spy, who operated in the shadows. His biography reveals he liked the lavish life, and the likes of Marlene Dietrich, Bertolt Brecht, Noel Coward and Ernest Hemingway were in his social circle. Katz was a man of charm, and his playboy image was good camouflage: "Katz didn't look like a communist, didn't behave like one. When a friend commented, 'No one took Otto seriously...' he was making a mistake – the mistake repeated by hundreds."
Johnny: A Spy's Life by Gordon D. Scot, R.S. Rose (book review) (Article no longer available from the original source)
A new book about Canada's Secret Agent 235 reveals why Germanborn Johann Heinrich Amadeus de Graaf - known all his life as "Johnny" - become a double agent for several countries. Posing as a pro-Nazi for MI6 among interned German citizens during the Second World War, de Graaf rooted out out real pro-Nazi and Gestapo agents in Britain. Lent to Canada to penetrate its Nazi spy and sympathizer movement, he prevented an engineer from possibly blowing up major Hydro-Quebec facilities and a working-class group from doing damage to railroad tunnels.
West German spy agency employed 200 Nazi criminals after the end of World War II
The German spy service has admitted that it employed about 200 Nazi criminals after the end of World War II. Some had been involved in massacres in the Eastern Front, others were Gestapo torturers: all found a place in the West German intelligence service. The cases have been revealed because the Federal German Intelligence Service (BND) is compiling a history of its espionage activities since 1956 - and so polishing up its image. There was never any attempt to conceal the fact that the BND used Nazis - it was set up in a hurry, with U.S. help, to create spying networks against the Soviet Union.
Werner Strebel: Nazi spy interested only in good food and easy living
A German spy sent to Britain to discover Royal Air Force (RAF) secrets passed on only "entirely worthless" information to the Nazis, MI5 files reveal. Swiss-born Werner Strebel became involved in espionage because he believed it would be a comfortable life. Recruited as a spy by the Abwehr (German military intelligence) Strebel travelled to London before the start of World War Two in 1939. He sent back only 3 secret messages, all regarded "quite useless" by the Abwehr. He told his Abwehr handler he followed the motto "good food, good drink and easy living".
Sophie Kukralova: Blonde Nazi spy who had affairs with two British secret agents
A glamorous Nazi spy became involved with two British secret agents in Cairo, classified World War II files reveal. Sophie Kukralova - codenamed R 37 49 by the Nazis - had a "most undesirable familiarity" with the two intelligence officers. She seemed have been a femme fatale: One married agent offered to leave his wife and marry the blonde while the second threatened to blow her cover unless she slept with him. Kukralova's arrival in Cairo in 1941 raised suspicion because of her excess wealth, expensive taste in clothes, and her claims of high-level connections with the Nazi regime.
MI6 documents reveal how spy - codenamed “Knopf” - fed information on Hitler’s secrets
MI6 got secrets from a spy operating in Adolf Hitler's high command during the World War II, documents in the Churchill Archives reveal. The secret agent, "Knopf", supplied information on Führer's plans in the Mediterranean and on the Eastern Front, the health of Field Marshal Erwin Rommel and the location of the "Wolf's Lair" — the Führer HQ in Eastern Prussia. Historians usually understate the WW2 role of MI6 — compared to the Bletchley Park — but the discovery of Agent Knopf by historian Paul Winter shows that Britain received intelligence from the upper ranks of the Third Reich.
Yotoku Miyagi, one of Richard Sorge's spies, posthumously gets a Soviet-era medal, the Order of the Patriotic War
In 1943 Toshiko Tokuyama learned that her uncle had been a spy, and that he had just perished in a prison in Tokyo. 1933-1941 Yotoku Miyagi - a member of Richard Sorge's spy network - had spied for the Soviet Union against Japan. But Tokuyama could never bring herself to doubt her uncle. For the last two decades a group of supporters have worked to change history's appraisal of Miyagi - reviled in Japan and forgotten by Moscow. Recently Tokuyama traveled to the Russian Embassy in Tokyo, where she was presented - on her uncle's behalf - with a Soviet-era medal, the Order of the Patriotic War.
They Dared Return: The True Story of Jewish Spies behind the Lines in Nazi Germany by Patrick K. O'Donnell
In "They Dared Return" Patrick K. O'Donnell explores the Operation Greenup: the plan to infiltrate the Alpine Redoubt (Alpenfestung: Alpine Fortress) where Adolf Hitler was rumored to have been planning a final stand. They Dared Return is the story of 5 Jews who escaped from Nazi Germany and made their way to the United States, where they became part of the Office of Strategic Services' German Operational Group. The book opens in the middle gut-wrenching action, then jumps back in time to relate the story of the men who dared return, raising the question: who will be unfortunate enough to fall into the hands of the Nazi Gestapo?
A working class couple exposed a Nazi spy in Dundee, Scotland
A working class couple in Dundee exposed a Nazi agent during the Second World War. John and Mary Curran exposed a German spy to MI5 but to protect them, their heroism has never been publicly recognised. Now the Curran's daughter Catherine has broken her silence. Dundee's Kinloch Street was once the location of a hairdresser run by Jessie Jordan. But the business was just a front: Jessie was a Nazi spy. "My mum found maps, one in particular behind the till." Dundee police were initially doubting but they contacted MI5 where alarm bells started to ring.
British agents captured Nazi spies in Iceland before D-Day
MI5 files in the National Archives in Kew reveal that during WW2 the Nazis sent a series of spies to Iceland to gather crucial weather information. In May 1944 the Germans sent 3 spies to foil Allied D-Day invasion, but Allied agents having dinner in a hotel in Seydisfjordur were tipped off by a seal hunter, who had seen strangers. Alerting an Allied ship would have taken too much time, allowing the Nazi spies to disappear deep into the wilderness. So the Allied agents persuaded the seal hunter to be their guide. They hiked across the snow following the trail, finally reaching Nazi loyalist Ernst Fresenius and two Icelanders, hired as mercenaries by the Nazi military.
Double agent blocked 2 German tank divisions and 19 infantry divisions from D-Day battles
As WWII loomed, Juan Pujol Garcia contacted the British authorities offering to spy for UK. Turned down, he offered himself to the Nazis in the hope he could betray them. From Lisbon he sent made-up reports and the Germans were convinced - so were the Brits who enlisted him as a double agent with the codename Garbo. Garcia warned the Nazis that the Normandy attack was a fake and as a result the Germans kept 2 armoured divisions and 19 infantry divisions on the Calais coast, waiting for the "real" invasion. 6 weeks after D-Day the Spaniard was granted the Iron Cross by a grateful Third Reich - and the MBE by a grateful Britain.
Special forces and intelligence officer David Smiley died aged 92
Colonel David Smiley was one of the most famous World War II cloak-and-dagger agents, serving behind enemy lines in Albania, Greece, Abyssinia and Japanese-controlled eastern Thailand. In 1940 he joined the Somaliland Camel Corps, arriving at Berbera the very day it was decided to evacuate British Somaliland. Frustrated, he traveled back to Egypt and persuaded General Wavell to recommend him for the newly-formed commandos. Once he had to escape from Albania in a rowing boat. In Thailand he was stretchered for 3 days through the jungle with severe burns after a booby-trap meant for a senior Japanese officer detonated too soon.
Soviet spy Anatoly Gurevich, a member of the Red Orchestra spy ring, passes away (Article no longer available from the original source)
Soviet spy Anatoly Gurevich, who was arrested in Nazi-occupied France in 1942, has passed away in Saint Petersburg at the age of 96. He was a member of the Red Orchestra spy ring which operated in France, Germany, Belgium and Switzerland during the Second World War. In 1945, when WWII ended, Gurevich traveled back to Moscow where he was seized along with other Red Orchestra agents two years later and sent to prison for 20 years. After Stalin's death in 1953 he was freed but then sent to labour camp for 25 years under Nikita Khrushchev.
Robert Furman, "Mysterious Major" at center of the building of the Pentagon and the a-bomb, dies
For 60 years, Robert Ralph Furman lived a quiet suburban life. Few around him knew his World War II role. He was at the center of the building of the Pentagon and the development of the atomic bomb. His roles were wrapped in such secrecy that his name did not appear in documents for decades. In 1940, as a member of the Army Reserve, he became a key figure in the construction of a new War Department office building. The Pentagon was finished in 17 months, and in mid-1943, Furman was ready for a new task. His boss' boss General Leslie Groves was in charge of the Manhattan Project, and he picked Furman as his chief of intelligence to discover what the Nazis were upto.
Bond creator Ian Fleming saved MI6 - reveal files at the National Archives at Kew
Ian Fleming, who was an officer in the British Navy's intelligence, helped to add "new blood" into MI6 by allowing it to be infiltrated by members of the Cambridge spy ring. The secret files reveal that British naval chiefs began to lobby Winston Churchill to let them start their own espionage service after an army officer was put in charge of MI6 - a post traditionally led by a navy officer. However, Fleming, the British Navy's liaison officer with MI6, directed them away from the idea. Instead, his suggestion, dated April 1940, read: "...the infusion of new blood into the existing organisation would be better than chopping off hoary but experienced heads."
Winston Churchill was begged to keep SOE going to counter Russian menace
Winston Churchill was recommended, by the head of Britain's World War II secret espionage unit going in peacetime, to counter "the Russian menace", files released by the National Archives reveal. But the wartime PM unknowingly signed the death warrant of the Special Operations Executive (SOE) by holding up a decision on it until after the 1945 general election, which he lost to Clement Attlee. Lord Selborne, who as Minister of Economic Warfare headed up the service, argued against placing the unit under the control of the Foreign Office, which wanted to combine it with the Secret Intelligence Service (SIS).
The Lost Spy: An American in Stalin's Secret Service by Andrew Meier
In "The Lost Spy" Andrew Meier reveals the tragic tale of Isaiah Oggins, one of the first Americans to spy for the Soviet Union. He was a Jewish intellectual who felt ostracized by the Ivy League's WASP world and searched solace with young Communists in New York City. With them he dreamed of a "world revolution" that would spread from the Soviet Union through Europe to the US. Oggins and his wife, a radical Soviet emigrée Nerma Berman, ran a safe house in Berlin for Soviet agents and spied on the Romanovs in Paris and the Japanese in Manchuria. "He envisioned a utopia on earth... He imagined himself an American Robin Hood among the Bolsheviks."
Richard Sorge - World War II spy for the Soviet Union
On the outbreak of WW1 Richard Sorge joined the German Army, earning the Iron Cross medal on the Eastern front. In March 1916 Sorge was badly wounded. In hospital he started a relationship with one of his nurses; consequently Sorge was influenced by her Marxist father. Not fit enough to return to the frontline, he studied at Berlin University. In 1925 he moved to the Soviet Union where he worked for the Comintern Intelligence Division. In 1929 Sorge traveled back to Germany, tasked to join the Nazi Party. In 1933 the Soviet Union decided to get Sorge to set up a spy network in Japan...
The Hunt for Nazi Spies: Fighting Espionage in Vichy France
During the German occupation of France, Suzanne Desseigne started contact with the Nazis. She became the mistress of a German soldier who enrolled her to conduct espionage missions against the Vichy regime. Her mother described the Nazi spy as "a young French girl who, from the age of 15... felt the danger of Bolshevism and of the Jewish conspiracy." She remained, even after her captivity, a earnest traitor, attacking other inmates who did not share her loyalty to the Nazi cause. --- Historian Simon Kitson's research of the French counterintelligence service's pursuit of German spies is precise, but maybe not aimed to appeal to a mass market.
Noel Coward recruited as pre-war undercover agent, letters reveal
Noël Coward was recruited as a British undercover agent in 1938 and was critical of fellow actors who "scuttled off" to Hollywood instead of fighting for their country, according to unpublished letters. Many date from the war years, a period only touched on in his autobiography, and reveal details about his spying activities. "I have encountered a number of people who appear sceptical of Britain’s ability to ... overcome the extreme challenges we presently face. I have tried to convince them that, though we may inhabit a small island, we never have been or ever shall be a small people" - assessing the mood in Hollywood in 1940.
Oct. 18, 1945: Red Spy Klaus Fuchs steals US Atom Bomb Secrets
1945: Klaus Fuchs passes American atomic bomb secrets to the Soviet Union for the first time. 1945-1947, working with a courier Raymond, Fuchs delivered information on the atomic bomb, later the hydrogen bomb, to Moscow. Fuchs was a refugee from Hitler's Third Reich, fleeing to England in 1933. At the outbreak of WWII, he was interned but released through professor Max Born. Fuchs was recruited for the British atomic bomb project, and became a British subject in 1942. In 1943 he was among British scientists sent to the US to collaborate on the Manhattan Project. He was present at the Trinity test in July 1945. Through it all, however, he remained a committed communist.
Spy left out in the cold: how MI6 buried heroic exploits of agent Griffin
The mystery of how one of Britain's longest-serving and best-placed spies smuggled scientific documents about Adolf Hitler's nuclear weapons programme out of Nazi Germany are concealed, it is alleged, within the secret service's archives. Cherie Booth appeared in court in an attempt to rescue the reputation of Paul Rosbaud from oblivion. Codenamed Griffin, he provided London with detailed information on Hitler's weapons programme. Rosbaud is believed to have supplied British intelligence with information about V2 rocket bombs and confirmation that Nazi efforts to build an atom bomb had been unsuccessful.
Round world trip by 5 British naval officers was daring spy mission
Five British naval officers conducted a spying mission on Japanese-controlled islands in 1933 while sailing around the world claiming that they were making an amateur attempt to circumnavigate the globe, newly discovered papers have revealed. 8 years later the Japanese armed forces used the Kurile Islands to hide 6 aircraft carriers that destroyed the American fleet in Pearl Harbor. The papers have emerged from the estate of the late Commander Robert Ryder - the sailing master of the officers’ yacht. Historians believe they show that the British had guessed Japan’s hostile intentions and seen the military potential of the islands much earlier than previously thought.
Memorial unveiled to courageous Canadian spy Gustave Bieler
The exploits of a little-known Canadian spy Gustave (Guy) Bieler - a key player in the French Resistance before his capture and execution at a Nazi death camp in 1944 - are being showcased inside the Flossenburg Concentration Camp Museum. Bieler was parachuted into France in 1942 under the codename "Musician" - and he organized one of the French underground's most successful sabotage teams. The Nazi interrogators were so impressed by his unwillingness to reveal secrets that they paid tribute to him with an honour guard when he was shot to death on Sept. 6, 1944.
Laurence Olivier acted as World War 2 secret agent
On screen he portrayed military heroes such as Henry V, Lord Nelson and the Duke of Wellington. In real life Laurence Olivier, accused by some of lacking patriotism, worked secretly to help secure the hearts of US during the early stages of WW2. According to a book, he was secretly enlisted into the Special Operations Executive in 1940 by the British ambassador Lord Lothian and the producer Sir Alexander Korda. Olivier was given the task of building support in a neutral US for Britain's war with Nazi Germany. Michael Munn, the author of Lord Larry, said: "Winston Churchill recruited Alexander Korda to set up offices in America which were a front for the SOE and MI5."
The story of Peter and Helen Riedel, part III
During Peter Ernst Riedel’s stint in Sweden in 1943 under the supervision of Colonel Georg Hansen, head of the Abwehr’s Air Force Technical Intelligence, evidence of Nazi atrocities reached his desk. Though already disillusioned by Nazism and the failure of the German Air Ministry to recognize America’s air potential, Riedel retained an allegiance to his country and his "wish for victory" evaporated. During his weekly Abwehr trips to Berlin, Peter shared his concern with a few trusted colleagues. At a cocktail party in Berlin, Riedel was approached by a Finnish Military Attaché, who asked him to consider providing intelligence to Americans about Russian aircraft.
The day Agent Zigzag came back from the dead - Eddie Chapman
After the publication of Agent Zigzag, I received a call from the German Ambassador Wolfgang Ischinger: "I have just finished your book. You describe how Eddie Chapman was flown across the Channel by the Luftwaffe ...the man who commanded that flight was my father. Both he and the pilot, Fritz Schlichting, are still very much alive." Schlichting had been the Iron Cross pilot at the controls of the Focke-Wulf reconnaissance plane in 1942, while Karl "Charlie" Ischinger was his navigator. The discovery led to a meeting with Fritz Schlichting. "We were the Luftwaffe Reconnaissance Squadron number 123 stationed in the Château du Buc, outside Versailles."
MI6 secrecy over superspy, who passed on A-bomb, V2 and V1 rockets
MI6, which has policy to keep all its files locked away, has been ordered to appear at a public hearing over the case of one of its superspies Paul Rosbaud, whose file is buried in the archives of the headquarters of the Secret Intelligence Service. Unlike MI5, which has been releasing its WWII records to the National Archives in Kew, MI6 has kept all its files secret. Paul Rosbaud offered his services because he was horrified by the ambitions of the Nazi regime. His offer to be a spy was accepted by Frank Foley, Britain’s chief wartime spymaster in Third Reich. Rosbaud passed on secrets about nazi research into jet aircraft, radar and the V2 and V1 rockets.
Lucinda Franks's father was a spy and an assassin
A few years ago Lucinda Franks stumbled upon a box: Beneath some maps, she found a military cap with the metal insignia of an eagle, a skull and crossbones and a swastika. "Was my sphinx-like father presenting one character and living another?" she writes in her memoir "My Father's Secret War." He refused to talk, but she pieced together his story. Fluent in German, he was a spy and occasionally an assassin. The Nazi cap was part of his disguise as a member of the Waffen SS, worn the night he broke into a Gestapo headquarters and killed a guard. He kept it because of the death's head insignia: "I never wanted to forget who these German soldiers really were."
A Spy Called Sorge - the Sorge affair in Japanese film
Faint lighting, a podium, and men in dark suits provided the backdrop for a discussion about Richard Sorge - a soviet spy in Japan during World War II and member of the German Communist Party. Under the cover of reporter, he sought to collect information on Nazi Germany's war plans inside of Japan for the Soviet Union. Japanese authorities arrested Sorge and executed him. The Paul I. and Hisako Terasaki Center sponsored a lecture "Traitors and Patriots: the Sorge Affair in Postwar Japanese Culture." Professor Thomas Rimer discussed how the Sorge affair continues to resonate within Japanese culture.
Eddie Chapman: The true wartime story and the incredible exploits
Secret intelligence attracts oddballs, some hugely talented. The most exotic of MI5’s "doubles" was Eddie Chapman. His story would defy belief, were it not supported by a documentation in both German archives and declassified MI5 files, of which Ben Macintyre (The True Wartime Story of Eddie Chapman: Lover, Betrayer, Hero, Spy) and Nicholas Booth (The Incredible Wartime Exploits of Eddie Chapman) make splendid use. Booth’s version of the story is less well written, but profits from the assistance of its subject’s widow, who has provided some racy detail.
War with MI6: secret files of Britain's greatest spy against the Nazis
A fierce legal tussle has broken out between Cherie Booth (who is representing the family of the secret agent Paul Rosbaud) and MI6 over top-secret files that relate to "The Griffin", an Austrian who provided Britain with vital intelligence on the Nazi atom bomb programme during World War 2. Paul Rosbaud was one of the most important agents of the war. A scientist opposed to the Nazi regime, he provided Britain with intelligence on jet aircraft, radar, flying bombs and Nazi attempts to develop the atomic bomb. At the end of the war, he was spirited out of Germany in British military uniform.
Forgotten UK spy ring in the US to bring America into WWII
It was 1940, the Nazis were in the ascendant, the Blitz at its deadliest, and Britain's last hope was to bring a reluctant U.S. into the war. So the largest covert operation in UK history was launched. William Boyd sheds light on a forgotten spy ring. BSC, "British Security Coordination," was one of the largest covert operations in British spying history; a covert operation that was run in the US during 1940 and 1941, before Pearl Harbor. Winston Churchill realised that he had to achieve one thing in order to ensure that Britain was not defeated by Hitler's Nazi Germany: he had to enlist the US as Britain's ally.
Peter Smithers Dies; Spy worked for creator of James Bond
As a spy in World War II, Sir Peter Smithers worked for Ian Fleming, who went on to create the spy James Bond, and British papers did not ignore the possible connection. But neither Mr. Fleming nor his biographers ever confirmed any of the many rumored Bond originals, and Sir Peter was never prominent among them. He helped round up German spies in Britain. Sent to Washington, he worked in naval intelligence. And later he monitored U-boat communications.
Canadian World War II spy finally comes clean in death
A central figure in the wartime Ottawa spy network exposed by Russian cipher clerk Igor Gouzenko has reached from beyond the grave to provide for the full details. Gordon Lunan, who died last fall provides the new account in Redhanded, which is an updated version of The Making of a Spy. In it he comes clean, admitting he funnelled information to Russian agents in the Second World War. But he denies he ever intended to betray his country. But often "the scientists would simply say no, they wouldn't or couldn't pass on the information which was fine with me. There was one request for a sample of U-235 uranium. That request fell on deaf ears."
The Perfect Spy - Fritz Kolbe
He was a civil servant in an uncivilized society, an underling assigned to incinerate the secret messages that circulated among his sinister superiors. 1943, Fritz Kolbe stuck a stack of papers into a pouch and took a train to the Swiss capital. He met Allen Dulles, a Wall Street lawyer hired to build an American espionage network. Kolbe's information was staggering: A spy who penetrated the British embassy in Turkey was feeding the Nazis details about the planned D-Day landing at Normandy.