This narrative Mr Macintyre once again proves he is a master of telling the stories of British Intelligence This book is than the story of Operation Fortitude the Allies attempt to convince the Germans that the invasion of France was oing to be somewhere other than Normandy The author tells the story of how British Intelligence MI 6 completely penetrated the German spy network in Great Britain and used that control to tell the Germans exactly what the Allies wanted them to hear and to a Notorious Pleasures (Maiden Lane, great extent what the Germans themselves wanted to believe According to the author every agent Germany attempted to insert into Great Britain was captured Most were imprisoned a few executed and some became double agentsThe author does aood job of describing the covert intel war on the Iberian Peninsula It seems it became the central theater in the war between MI 6 and German Intelligence the Abwehr Especially in the early war most of the German controllers were based in either Spain or Portugal In telling the story of the Abwehr s attempts to The Oracles Golem (The Oracle get agents into Britain Mr Macintyre does an excellent job to discussing the weaknesses and frankly theullibility in the German agents controlling their British Spy ringHe looks at how both sides recruited agents controlled them their methods of communications and how the British used the time delay for Measuring the Subjective Well-Being of Nations getting information from Britain to Spain to their advantage Sometimes this was done in letting agentsive the Germans actual operational details but timed in such a way that they would arrive too late to be of any useWhen he starts telling of the story of Operation Fortitude he looks at just how the information the agents were Let It Bree / Cant Buy Me Louie (Harlequin Duets, giving the Germans reinforced their preconceived notions of when and where they invasions would take place the area around the Pal de Calais in northern France and closest part of France to Britain He also tells of how they inflated the Allied Order of Battle to such an extent that even after the troops landed on D Day the Germans believed that there was still enough strength in Britain to conduct another landingIn addition to the double agents the author does look at some of the other methods the Allies used to reinforce what they where sending their German controllers This includes the famous rubber vehicles and planes false radio traffic using General Patton as a decoy etcThe author also looks at the American attempts toet into the intel The Solitary Self game how it almost cost MI 6 one of their better agents It seems that in the attempt to beood partners MI 6 let the FBIOSS run one the agents who had moved to the US The attempt failed because Herbert Hoover the head of the FBI did not believe in or trust double agents and wouldn t allow the agent to be The Ornaments of Life given anything at all believable or of any use to the Germans After about six months the agent reverted to British control and according to the author left a bad taste all around and a rather large hotel bill for the Americans to payFinally in telling the stories of the agents he really does look at their motivations The men and women s reasons ran theamut from patriotism one was a Polish Fighter pilot who despised the Germans to One Wish (Thunder Point, greed a couple of them were looking for someone to bankroll their lifestyles to boredom with life and the thought that spying would be exciting The author includes an epilogue that tells what happened to the main characters after the war that I found extremely interestingI found this a very informational andripping read It is definitely a 4 star read I rounded down for GR. Ual Peruvian party irl a deeply eccentric Spaniard with a diploma in chicken farming and a volatile Frenchwoman whose obsessive love for her pet dog very nearly wrecked the entire plan The D Day spies were without uestion one of the oddest military units ever assembled and their success depended on the delicate dubious relationship between spy and spymaster both German and British Their enterprise was saved from catastrophe by a shadowy sixth spy whose heroic sacrifice is revealed here for the first time With the same depth of research eye for the absurd and masterful storytelling that have made Ben Macintyre an international bestseller Double Cross is a captivating narrative of the spies who wove a web so intricate it ensnared Hitler’s army and carried thousands of D Day troops across the Channel in safet.
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With the canoe balanced on his head He intended to paddle to Holland A roadman reported to police that a man with a canoe had fallen off his motorcycle on Pamisford road and he had helped the man throw the canoe over a hedge If you re looking for a crazy fun nonfiction book to read then Double Cross is it I m so lad I listened to this audiobook I ve had several of Mr Macintyre s books on my to read list for a while and this one didn t disappoint I ve read multiple books on British WWII intelligence and D day deception schemes my first novel was about D day deceptions schemes so I did a fair amount of research but I still learned something new This book will now be my Remembering and Repeating go to recommendation for readers wanting a nonfiction account of D day spies Great bit of history told with skilled writing My favorite kind of narrative history This book was absolutely hilarious It is proof of the old adage that truth is stranger than fiction I don t think any fiction authors could invent the wacky people in this book because they wouldn t have been believedI uote a few sentences from the book to prove my point p5 6For the D Day spies were without uestion one of the oddest military units ever assembled They included a bisexual Peruvian playgirl a tiny Polish fighter pilot a mercurial Frenchwoman a Serbian seducer and a deeply eccentric Spaniard with a diploma in chicken farmingthe Double Cross spies were variously courageous treacherous capriciousreedy and inspiredOne was so obsessed with her pet dog that she came close to derailing the entire invasion All were to some extent fantasists for that is the very essence of espionage Two were of dubious moral characterOne was a triple and possibly a uadruple agentThe author is uite aware of how funny his material can be in places but in typical British understated style simply presents the information knowing that readers would find this funnier for it not being labeled as such However before anyone Leonardo and the Mona Lisa Story gets the idea that the writer is simply having areat time with this material the last few pages are a tribute to one spy in particular who likely died in a concentration camp although no one really knows his fate He also makes it clear throughout the book how essential this effort was The misinformation fed to the Germans meant that they refused to move additional troops to Normandy when D Day happened This kept the casualties much lower than they would have otherwise and possibly kept the end of the war from being a few years later In many ways James Bond would have been unable to keep up with these people at least intellectually Physically of course 007 would have outstripped them easily These people were warriors with words not your typical warriors Many of the actual warriors survived the war thanks to the outrageous lies these people fed their German handlers However the success of the entire unit belonged to the supervisors of these people They had to baby cajole humor lie carouse and threaten these people never being completely sure that a few of them weren t actually working for the other side and deceiving the Brits The author notes that this story wouldn t have been able to be written at all if the British secret services hadn t fairly recently decided to open up the files for this time period The spies themselves pretty much expected that their stories would never be known To sum up this book is serious history written with a keen eye for the absurd Highly recommended I plan on rereading it again some day when my to read pile isn t so ridiculous With. Way rather than Normandy It was the most sophisticated and successful deception operation ever carried out ensuring that Hitler kept an entire army awaiting a fake invasion saving thousands of lives and securing an Allied victory at the most critical juncture in the war The story of D Day has been told from the point of view of the soldiers who fought in it the tacticians who planned it and the enerals who led it But this epic event in world history has never before been told from the perspectives of the key individuals in the Double Cross System These include its director a brilliant urbane intelligence officer a colorful assortment of MI5 handlers as well as their counterparts in Nazi intelligence and the five spies who formed Double Cross’s nucleus a dashing Serbian playboy a Polish fighter pilot a bisex.
I am a big fan of the mighty Ben Macintyre so it was only a matter of time before I d read Double Cross The True Story of the D Day Spies In Double Cross The True Story of the D Day Spies Macintyre relates the untold story of the extraordinary band of agents and double agents who convinced the Nazis that the 150000 Allied troops who landed on the beaches of Normandy on D Day were just one part of a larger invasion plan with others to follow at Calais and Norway This belief convinced the Nazi hierarchy to hold troops back which is now recognised as being decisive in allowing the Allies to create a bridgehead into Normandy These agents included a dashing Serbian playboy a Polish fighter pilot a bisexual Peruvian party irl a deeply eccentric Spaniard with a diploma in chicken farming and a volatile Frenchwoman whose obsessive love for her pet dog nearly wrecked the entire plan Needless to say it is up to the high standards that we Ben Macintyre fans have come to expect Once again truth is stranger than fiction It s a compelling read and another remarkable slice of previously untold WW2 history 45 This book Is AmazingDo you know how many uncaptured German spies were operating in Britain during WWIIZeroThat s rightEvery single German spy was either captured or became part of MI5 s XX System aka Double Cross And each one of them was a character As McIntyre puts itThey included a bisexual Peruvian playgirl a tiny Polish fighter pilot a mercurial Frenchwoman a Serbian seducer and a deeply eccentric Spaniard with a diploma in chicken farming Together under Robertson s Fly Away Home (South Africa Series, guidance they delivered all of the little lies that together made up the big lie The Double Cross spies were variously courageous treacherous capriciousreedy and inspired They were not obvious heroes and their organization was betrayed from within by a Soviet spy One was so obsessed with her pet dog that she came close to derailing the entire invasion All were to some extent fantasists for that is the very essence of espionage Two were of dubious moral characterOne was a triple and possibly a uadruple agentThe story of the Double Cross spies reads like a British farce up to and including the fact that all of the spies were Soldier O - Bosnian Inferno given punny names One of the handlers thought of the entire war in times of cricket One agent codenamed Garbo created an entirely imaginary network of sub spies that comprised 27 hallucinated agents Another nearly drove MI5 to send a warship to bring her dog over and avoid the sacrosanct uarantine laws Yet another began his career in Portugal making up fake reports for the Germans about Liverpudlians hanging out in wine bars and naval exercises in what turned out to be landlocked lakes No matter how easily the British managed to defeat the Germans in the spyingame the Soviets Cambridge Five had just as successfully infiltrated them Yet the Cambridge Five were if anything too successful knowing from their spies about Double Cross the Soviets were convinced their own agents had also been doubled Oh the perils of paranoia Double Cross is occasionally poignant it is after all about WWII and often incredible but above all it is hands down funny My favourite uoteOne evening in his safe house in Hinxton near Cambridge Caroli crept up behind his minder while he was playing solitaire and tried to throttle him with a piece of rope When this failed he apologized tied the man to a chair and ran off with a can of sardines a pineapple and a large canvas shoe He then stole a motorcycle and motored very slowly toward the coast. In his celebrated bestsellers Agent Zigzag and Operation Mincemeat Ben Macintyre told the dazzling true stories of a remarkable WWII double agent and of how the Allies employed a corpse to fool the Nazis and assure a decisive victory In Double Cross Macintyre returns with the untold story of the rand final deception of the war and of the extraordinary spies who achieved it On June 6 1944 150000 Allied troops landed on the beaches of Normandy and suffered an astonishingly low rate of casualties D Day was a stunning military accomplishment but it was also a masterpiece of trickery Operation Fortitude which protected and enabled the invasion and the Double Cross system which specialized in turning German spies into double agents deceived the Nazis into believing that the Allies would attack at Calais and Nor.
Ben Macintyre is a writer at large for The Times UK and the bestselling author of The Spy and the Traitor A Spy Among Friends Double Cross Operation Mincemeat Agent Zigzag and Rogue Heroes among other books Macintyre has also written and presented BBC documentaries of his work