Special Operations Executive

Discussion in 'SOE & OSS' started by Jedburgh22, Oct 24, 2010.

  1. Jedburgh22

    Jedburgh22 Very Senior Member

    Hi there is no J F Sharrock in my lists, however camp X near Oshawa in Canada was in use post war (SOE was disbanded in 1946) the CMP would have been involved with the inheritor organizations. I have sent you a PM with details of someone who may be able to help with the info you need.

  2. PsyWar.Org

    PsyWar.Org Archive monkey

    Sorry to bombard you. What is the HS File number at Kew for the SOE name book?

    Suze, my apologies I missed the follow-up posts in this thread.

    The SOE name list is TNA file ref: HS 8/1013

    Not sure about the meaning of MT, it usually stands for "Motor Transport".

    Steven might be the man to have a definite answer?

  3. Jedburgh22

    Jedburgh22 Very Senior Member

    MT M for Training T for Belgium -
  4. Ron Goldstein

    Ron Goldstein WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran


    Thanks for any help !

  5. Marbrien

    Marbrien Junior Member

    I am undertaking family history research into SOE agent D/N14, Robert Christopher Skipworth Harris, killed in Iran on 3 August 1942. I have seen the contents of his personnel file at The National Archives. The file mentions other operatives in Iran at the time as being D/H5, D/N4, D/N7. Could anyone help me please as to how to ascertain the real names of these other agents? Thanks in advance.
  6. Jedburgh22

    Jedburgh22 Very Senior Member

    They will be listed in the SOE Symbols lists - I can look up for you in tyhe next few days

  7. PsyWar.Org

    PsyWar.Org Archive monkey

    Here's the D/N's:
    D/N4 - Capt EM Sykes
    D/N7 - HB Sinclair

    Editted to add:
    D/H5 - WR Young

  8. PsyWar.Org

    PsyWar.Org Archive monkey

    One of those have SOE personal files at the National Archives. It is closed but can be opened shortly through a FOI request:

    - HS 9/1365/3 Henry Bridges SINCLAIR - born 17.03.1911 (Closed)

    WR Young - No SOE P/F

    EM Sykes - No SOE P/F

  9. Marbrien

    Marbrien Junior Member

    Many thanks to both of you for this information.
  10. Marbrien

    Marbrien Junior Member

    Incidentally, does the "H" in D/H5's designation signify anything in particular? An item I read on TNA's web site suggests it might have stood for Hungary. Is that correct?
  11. PsyWar.Org

    PsyWar.Org Archive monkey

    If memory serves SOE D/H section covered the Balkans & Middle East.
  12. PsyWar.Org

    PsyWar.Org Archive monkey

    OK I thought a list SOE symbols might be useful. This is not a complete list and contains symbols from different periods of the war. The meaning of symbols did change or were enlarged, etc.

    SOE Symbols:
    AD/M - Musgrove
    AL - Air Operations
    AMX - Massingham
    AQ/F - FANY personnel
    AQ/H - HQ Admin
    AQ/O - Stationery
    AQ/S - Stores and Equipment
    B/B - Delhi Group
    D/A - Administration
    D/AF - Offices, furniture and telephones
    D/AG - Air Raid Precautions
    D/AT - Transport
    D/CA - Arms
    D/CAM.F - Special Supplies
    D/CE - Security
    D/D - Devices
    D/E - Wireless
    D/FIN - Finance
    D/H - Balkans and Middle East (Cairo Group)
    D/N - Persian staff
    D/P - Russia
    D/PLANS - Future Planning
    D/PROPS - Land and Buildings
    D/Q - Press Propaganda
    D/S - Scandinavia
    D/T - Security
    D/YC - Codes, Cyphers and Telegrams
    D/Z - Shipping
    DSR - Director of Scientific Research
    DSS - Security Special Section
    DT - Liaison with SIS
    E - Director of Services
    E/c - Codes
    EU/P - Poles, Minorities
    F - France
    H - Spain and Portugal (Iberia)
    J - Italy, Malta and Switzerland
    K - Special Liaison and Far East
    L - Planning and Intelligence
    MG - General Staff (London Group)
    MP - Poland
    MS - Communications
    MT - Training
    MTH - Hungary
    MY - Czechoslovakia
    N - Holland
    O - Far East
    Q - North Africa
    RF - Allied French
    S - Scandinavia
    T - Belgium
    U - USA and South America
    W - East and West Africa
    X - Germany and Austria

  13. Marbrien

    Marbrien Junior Member

    Lee - Thanks very much for that. In case you're interested, here's the basics of the story I am researching.

    Harris (DN/14) was involved in organising support for the allied cause among Iranian tribesmen in anticipation of a German invasion of Iran. To gain further experience, he had volunteered to work behind German lines in the Russian campaign for a while, and was on his way to see D/H5 when he was murdered. My hunch is he may have been going to discuss what he could do in Russia. He never got there, as he was ambushed and killed by tribesmen on 3 August 1942 in the Lorestan mountains. With him, and also killed, were an Australian medical missionary, Dr Leslie Griffiths, and the doctor's 10 year old son Ian, who were his friends and nothing to do with the SOE. The British suspected the complicity in the killings of two Iranian military figures who were openly pro-German. One of those two - General Zahidi - was shortly afterwards abducted and removed from the country by SAS man Fitzroy Maclean (the abduction is recalled in Maclean's book "Eastern Approaches"). The British also suspected a German agent may have led the tribesmen in the ambush. My next port of call is TNA, to inspect the file of the interrogation of the SD agent Franz Mayr, who was rounded up with most of his Iranian network in 1943. It is just possible that somewhere in that file there will be confirmation, or refutation, of German involvement.

    Thanks again for your help.
  14. Jedburgh22

    Jedburgh22 Very Senior Member

    A German Abwehr Agent wrote an account of Iranian Operations the title is Daybreak in Iran - in 1944 the SS Jagdkommandos under Otto Skorzeny were resp0onsible for clandestine missions in Iran and he was I believe involved in the planning of a plot to kidnap the Shah of Iran.
  15. PsyWar.Org

    PsyWar.Org Archive monkey

    Interesting research your undertaking Marbrien. Good luck with it.
  16. Marbrien

    Marbrien Junior Member

    Jedburgh22 - thanks for the reference. I've just finished reading "Daybreak in Iran" but the author (Bernhard Schulze-Holthus of the Abwehr) was in league with the Qashgais tribes, and was almost certainly in the wrong part of Iran to be implicated in the Griffiths/Harris killings.

    I have two further questions, if I may.

    1. Can someone tell me what rank Robert Skipworth Harris was, and what unit within SOE he worked for? I can't seem to see either of these pieces of information in his PF. If it helps, his symbol was D/N14, and he was also referred to as 3931 (Service Number?).

    2. I'd be grateful for the name of another SOE agent in the Iran area, DN/9, and in knowing whether he has a PF.

    Many thanks.
  17. PsyWar.Org

    PsyWar.Org Archive monkey

    DN/9 was HJ Underwood, no SOE P/F unfortunately.
    The D/N symbols were allocated to Persian-based staff.
  18. Marbrien

    Marbrien Junior Member

    I have had another look at Harris's PF today at the National Archive. The unit he joined was definitely SO2, but all it says about his rank on joining is that he was "not yet commissioned". Apologies for my miltary ignorance, but what if anything can I assume about his rank from that? Cheers.
  19. PsyWar.Org

    PsyWar.Org Archive monkey

    He may not have ever had a rank. He obviously joined as a civilian and unless there was a particular need for him to be commissioned as an officer he may have remained as a civilian throughout his service in SOE. The War Office got rather uppity about SOE dishing out commissions willy-nilly.
  20. Marbrien

    Marbrien Junior Member

    OK, thanks again.

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