Double Cross: The True Story of The D-Day Spies

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A&C Black, Mar 27, 2012 - History - 448 pages
19 Reviews
D-Day, 6 June 1944, the turning point of the Second World War, was a victory of arms. But it was also a triumph for a different kind of operation: one of deceit, aimed at convincing the Nazis that Calais and Norway, not Normandy, were the targets of the 150,000-strong invasion force.

The deception involved every branch of Allied wartime intelligence - the Bletchley Park code-breakers, MI5, MI6, SOE, Scientific Intelligence, the FBI and the French Resistance. But at its heart was the 'Double Cross System', a team of double agents controlled by the secret Twenty Committee, so named because twenty in Roman numerals forms a double cross.

The key D-Day spies were just five in number, and one of the oddest military units ever assembled: a bisexual Peruvian playgirl, a tiny Polish fighter pilot, a Serbian seducer, a wildly imaginative Spaniard with a diploma in chicken farming, and a hysterical Frenchwoman whose obsessive love for her pet dog very nearly wrecked the entire deception. Their enterprise was saved from catastrophe by a shadowy sixth spy whose heroic sacrifice is here revealed for the first time. Under the direction of an eccentric but brilliant intelligence officer in tartan trousers, working from a smoky lair in St James's, these spies would weave a web of deception so intricate that it ensnared Hitler's army and helped to carry thousands of troops across the Channel in safety.

These double agents were, variously, brave, treacherous, fickle, greedy and inspired. They were not conventional warriors, but their masterpiece of deceit saved countless lives. Their codenames were Bronx, Brutus, Treasure, Tricycle and Garbo. This is their story.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - DramMan - LibraryThing

Forensic account of the double agents managed by MI5 during WWII, who succeeded in fooling the Nazis as to the expected location of the D Day landings. Great colour and detail, a remarkable and complex story of deception. Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - jamespurcell - LibraryThing

An unlikely gaggle of opportunists, turn double agent, participate in the an elaborate scheme to disguise the D Day landings. Well paid by the Germans and disdained by their "Oh So British" elitist ... Read full review

Contents

The Club
62
The Flock
111
A Time for Fortitude
173
Enriching the Chickenfeed
186
Artist Paints a Picture
203
Montys Double
220
Jebsens New Friend
244
Am I Not Always Careful?
257
Operation Dora
273
Guest of the Gestapo
287
Garbos Warning
311
Aftermath
338
Notes
363
Select Bibliography
401
Copyright

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About the author (2012)

Ben Macintyre is a columnist and Associate Editor on The Times. He has worked as the newspaper's correspondent in New York, Paris and Washington. He is the author of eight previous books including Agent Zigzag, shortlisted for the Costa Biography Award and the Galaxy British Book Award for Biography of the Year 2008, and the no. 1 bestseller Operation Mincemeat. He lives in London with his wife and three children.

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