Special Operations Executive

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

  1. Jedburgh22

    Jedburgh22 Very Senior Member

    Frederick Cardozo
    Frederick Cardozo, who died on October 7 aged 94, was an officer with the Special Operations Executive and played a key role in the organisation and fighting actions of the French Resistance in the Massif Central immediately before and after D-Day.

    Cardozo was parachuted on to the snow-clad Mont Mouchet, some 50 miles south of Clermont-Ferrand, on the night of 8-9 May 1944, together with two Frenchmen and an American. His brief was to report to London on the strength and location of the Resistance in the area, to make recommendations about the types of arms that its fighters required, and to integrate its actions with the forthcoming Allied invasion in Normandy.
    Cardozo’s first challenge was to overcome the suspicions of Emile Coulaudon, better known by his code-name, Colonel Gaspard, who was the socialist leader of some 2,000 men in the area, many of them communists wary of SOE’s connection with De Gaulle’s Free French. Gaspard’s doubts, however, were dissipated after Cardozo arranged for 28 plane-loads of arms and ammunition to be parachuted in between May 26 and June 9.
    Freddy Cardozo’s natural affability and bonhomie, allied to his perfect French, meant that he himself was invariably welcomed by Resistance fighters. He found it harder, however, to appease the rivalries and jealousies of the various Resistance chiefs, who were often reluctant to unite in the common cause.
    With the Allied invasion of France clearly imminent, volunteers flooded in to the movement so that, by the end of May, Gaspard commanded some 4,000 well-trained and well-armed men. The problem was that an equal number of eager volunteers remained, whom it was hard to vet and feed. But Cardozo failed to convince Gaspard that there was no point in taking on new recruits while equipment for them was lacking.
    He soon, however, distinguished himself in action. When the Germans attacked Mont Mouchet on June 2, Cardozo took part in a well-executed movement to the enemy’s rear, which inflicted some 40 casualties, and forced them into a hasty retreat. The Resistance’s leader in Clermont-Ferrand, meanwhile, warned that another, more formidable German onslaught was forthcoming. Anticipating his own arrest, he asked Cardozo to assure the appointment of his successor – testimony to the esteem in which the British officer was held.
    When the Germans again attacked Mont Mouchet on June 10, Cardozo’s skilful use of Browning machine-guns took a heavy toll. Next morning, though, there was no alternative to retreat and, thanks to a rearguard action, the main column reached safety some 17 miles to the west at Truyère. Frustrated, the Germans began murdering and terrorising civilians. In the village of Ruynes-en-Margeride alone, 27 men were shot.
    In mid-June Cardozo ensured the drop of a further 25 plane-loads of arms and ammunition. Subsequently he led a successful ambush in which 10 German soldiers, together with two officers, were captured. The Resistance wanted to kill them, but Cardozo’s more merciful counsels prevailed.
    Travelling by car on minor roads, Cardozo found his way as far west as Argentat in the Corrèze to co-ordinate Resistance groups, and to arrange for arms drops in that area.
    On his return to Truyère on June 20 he found the village being shelled by a heavy German force. Again, it was necessary to beat a retreat; this time, though, some 100 Resistance fighters were killed in the process. The Germans also murdered 60 wounded men on stretchers. Cardozo and his wireless operator hid in the woods near St Martial, and on June 21 watched helpless as the Germans set that village ablaze. Subsequently they managed to escape north-west through enemy lines to Cezens.
    Still bent upon uniting the various elements of the Resistance, Cardozo had another narrow escape when he turned up for a meeting with two leaders who, unknown to him, had been arrested. Fortunately he sensed that something was wrong with the rendez-vous, and managed to get away.
    Finally, on July 13 at a meeting at the Barrage de l’Aigle on the Dordogne west of Mauriac, Cardozo achieved his purpose when it was agreed to amalgamate the disparate Resistance forces under the titular leadership of Gaspard and the effective command of Colonel Roger Fayard, a former army officer and supporter of De Gaulle. On the morrow, Bastille Day, 36 Flying Fortresses parachuted in some 430 containers of equipment.
    Thereafter the Germans came under increasing pressure in the area. In August, when they retreated east from Aurillac, Cardozo led a group of fighters to harry them, to such effect that it took the Germans four days to accomplish a march normally completed in three hours. Meanwhile the garrison guarding the dam nearby at Mur de Barrez was surrounded by Resistance fighters. Cardozo reinforced the cordon, and insisted on negotiations which were responsible for the dam being taken over intact.
    In September Cardozo moved north to join Colonel Fayard, who succeeded in cutting off a force of 5,000 Germans south of Nevers, virtually ending the German occupation of central France. His mission more than accomplished, Cardozo returned to London. He was awarded the MC in 1945, and in France the Chevalier de la Légion d’honneur and the Croix de Guerre avec Palme.
    Sixty years later Cardozo was still revered for the courage and “sang froid Britannique” he had shown in France, as well as for his humour and humility. To the end of his life he was invited every year to address the village fete at La Forestie in Chalvignac, where he had been based while seeking to unite the Resistance in July 1944.
    Frederick Henry Cardozo was born on December 1 1916 at Newhaven in Sussex, where his father was commanding a garrison after being wounded the previous year at the battle of Loos.
    The Cardozos, of Portuguese descent, established themselves in the London tobacco trade at the end of the 17th century. From the end of the 18th century, however, Frederick’s ancestors, including his father, were East India Company merchants in Madras. Frederick’s mother was the daughter of Henry Daniell, who ran a china and antiques business from Wigmore Street, and helped to organise both the Wallace Collection in Manchester Square and the Pierpont Morgan Collection at Princes Gate.
    Frederick’s early years were spent in Devon, where his father had bought a farm, but when, in 1922, the government stopped subsidies for farming, the family moved to St Remo, and then, after a spell in Geneva, to the Loire valley in France. Frederick went to Jesuit schools in Geneva and Tours, and then to Prior Park in Bath, where he excelled at games. The school’s hockey team won the European Schools Hockey Tournament in Koblenz, where they refused to give the Nazi salute. The Führer, unamused, left before the prize-giving ceremony.
    Cardozo began as a bank trainee, but soon opted for a military career. He passed through the Supplementary Reserve Officers Scheme at Sandhurst, before being commissioned into the South Lancashire Regiment. His youthful bonhomie made him immensely popular with his men, who christened him “The Kid” on account of his short and wiry stature.
    Shortly after the beginning of the Second World War the regiment was sent to France, only to be forced back from Brussels to Dunkirk by the blitzkrieg of May 1940. Cardozo was wounded in the bottom by some shrapnel, which his orderly extracted with a penknife.
    After a protracted and uneventful period of home defence, Cardozo’s battalion moved to Scotland to train for D-Day. There, in a lull between bawdy songs after a gruelling exercise, he heard a voice intoning similarly crude ditties in French. Cardozo took up the refrain, and, the duet over, went to introduce himself. His fellow-singer turned out to be Henry Thackthwaite, who worked with the Free French in SOE. In no time Cardozo found himself recruited.
    After his return from France in the autumn of 1944, Cardozo was sent to the Udine area of north-eastern Italy, where he helped to stabilise the region and demobilise the Italian maquis. He was also involved with the repatriation of German prisoners through Vienna.
    Later Cardozo attended Staff College at Quetta, then in India, and was posted to intelligence appointments in Karachi and Haifa with the Airborne Division, before rejoining his regiment at Trieste. After a spell as British instructor at the Ecole de Guerre in Paris, he returned to England in 1955 to command a wing at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst.
    During the Suez Crisis, in 1956, Cardozo was sent out to Cyprus to the headquarters of Brigadier “Tubby” Butler’s 16th Independent Parachute Brigade, with orders to ensure close liaison between the Parachute Regiment and their French equivalents, battle-hardened veterans of Indo-China. When operations began, Cardozo was a member of the force dropped into Egypt to secure key positions before the surface troops arrived. He saw some brisk fighting as the Egyptians attempted to regain a captured waterworks.
    When the French were told that Anthony Eden, rattled by both American pressure and opposition at home, had ordered the British to pull out, they were aghast. Not until a full British colonel was dispatched with written orders that the French too should halt did they accept the position.
    General Hugh Stockwell, in command of British surface forces, contrived to interpret the “ceasefire at midnight” order to his advantage by recalling that midnight in London was 2am in his war zone. He ordered Butler “to get as far down the canal as possible.” Butler, accompanied by Cardozo, duly led 2nd Parachute Battalion at speed down the tarmac causeway between the Canal and Lake Manzala. By the time they halted, at 2.20am on November 7, they were only 23 miles from Port Said.
    Shortly after the Suez fiasco Cardozo left the Army, and for the next 10 years worked from France as press attaché at a US Army base in Orleans. After all US bases in France were closed down when NATO’s headquarters was transferred from Paris to Brussels at the end of 1966, Cardozo moved to London, where he briefly joined the Latin Mass Society as secretary to its president, the broadcaster Harmon Grisewood, his first cousin.
    Later he worked for the Save the Children Fund in Morocco, and for De Beers in Sierra Leone before retiring to Bath, and finally, after a short time in London, to his beloved Loire valley in France. He remained an excellent tennis player, and continued to play the violin to the end of his days.
    Frederick Cardozo married, in 1949, Simone Bigot, whom he had known in the Loire valley as a child; they had a son who went on to be a British Army officer, and a daughter.
    Frederick Cardozo, born December 1 1916, died October 7 2011

    Frederick Cardozo - Telegraph
  2. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member

    The operation against German forces on the Margeride at Mont Mouchet by Emile Coulaudon, alias Colonel Gaspard resulted inthe loss of 160 FFI dead and 200 wounded against 1400 German dead and 2000 wounded. The Germans requisitioned most of the dwellings in St Flour to treat their wounded.

    After the Germans brought in reinforcements, heavy weapons and air power, the FFI retreated along the steep banks of the Gorges de la Truyere across the present A75.The villages east of the present A75 and on the western slopes of Mont Mouchet paid the price and were ransacked and inhabitants murdered.The drop of arms and supplies by the USAAF came a little too late.

    Coulaudon was no doubt a very brave man.The FPT refused to join his FFI (De Gaullists as they said) on Mont Mouchet but he was determined to carry on the fight while the FTP elected to stay win the battle in the towns (as they declared)

    Interesting interview with Emile Coulaudon after the war in the making of "The Sorrow and the Pity" documentary.At the time his occupation was a taxi driver in Clermond Ferrand which proves that irregular leadership knows no bounds.

    Nancy Wake had some disagreements with Coulaudron in her time in the Auvergne. As German forces collapsed in the area,she was determined to beat him into the Vichy for the surrendering of the Germans.

    The French National Memorial to the Resistance is on the top of Mont Mouchet and is worth visiting.When we went up in a foggy afternoon in November,we met a couple of herds of cows making their way down to Clavieres for milking.....not a herdsman in sight.

    For those interested in engineering,the Pont de Garabit,a railway bridge over the Truyere is worth looking at from an historical point of view.It was the railway bridge that Eiffel first build to a design of ironwork that he would use on the Eiffel Tower design.
  3. Recce_Mitch

    Recce_Mitch Very Senior Member

    :poppy: Frederick Cardozo RIP :poppy:

  4. Jedburgh22

    Jedburgh22 Very Senior Member

    Belfast Telegraph: German U-boats refuelled in Ireland? Surely not...
    Belfast Telegraph (Northern Ireland)-September 19, 2011

    Never a man to neglect a good tale, I return to that old saw about German U-boats refuelling in neutral Ireland. Not because I believe it -- I spent much of my PhD thesis on Ireland in the Second World War disproving it -- but because a reader has sent me a fascinating account of his dad's war service as an SOE recruit.

    He was an expert in bomb disposal, demolition and sabotage, trained at Brickendonbury Manor, near Hertford, with the rank of lieutenant and later attached to the Royal Navy in Londonderry, the last of our Irish Treaty Ports.

    The other three were cheerfully handed over to de Valera by Malcolm MacDonald in 1938, earning Churchill's poisonous hatred.

    In 1940, our man -- his son asks for anonymity -- was sent to a base unit at HMS Ferret in Derry with five members of 30 Commando, Royal Marines; their job was to "prepare and supply equipment" (incendiary and explosive charges) for 15 marines and two officers aboard the "Royal Fleet Auxiliary Tugboat Tamara which was disguised as a trawler".

    Ho ho, cried Inspector Fisk when he saw these words. For the Tamara had appeared in my thesis. It was commanded by Lieutenant Commander WR 'Tiny' Fell, who went on to design midget submarines and who had spent a fruitless few weeks searching for German U-boats off the west coast of Ireland.

    Our reader's dad, however, believed that the Tamara was on no wild goose chase.

    "Father regularly, as did many British servicemen, changed into civvies and nipped across the Eire border for a crafty drink.

    "He usually went to the village of Dunfanaghy. Favourite haunts were... Molly's Bar, Arnolds Hotel and McGilloway's." All still exist.

    Our reader's dad "told me that one of the Irish landlords insisted he did not go into the snug since 'other gentlemen officers' were already there.

    He sneaked a look and discovered these were U-boat officers, whose craft were laid up in remote inlets, come ashore for unofficial R and R, and wearing their uniforms because Ireland was neutral".

    Newly-released British Cabinet papers suggest U-boat sightings in 1939 west of the Blasket Islands and near Bundoran in Donegal.

    And they also state that, although "there was... no evidence proving the existence of refuelling bases, there was evidence that U-boats were... possibly... landing crews for purposes of relaxation and obtaining provisions".

    Guy Liddell, the director of wartime British counter-espionage, wrote that he had asked Colonel Liam Archer of Ireland's G2 military intelligence about U-boat landings, to which the alleged reply was: "They are here in force, we can't do anything."

    According to Liddell, Archer said a U-boat called in three times a week at a base at the mouth of the Doonbeg river, County Clare.

    But before this glorious secret history takes hold of your imagination, there are one or two snags.

    Quite apart from the British Cabinet's lack of evidence, our reader admits that "many of the suppositions about German forces in the Irish Republic may be down to the German-looking uniforms used by the Irish at the time".

    In 1979, not long before he died, Frank Aiken, IRA veteran and wartime minister of "coordination for defensive measures" told me that "no German U-boat landed on the Irish coast -- if it had done, I think I would have heard about it."

    But our reader's dad wasn't the only Briton to cross the border for rest and relaxation. Several Royal Navy officers regularly arrived in Donegal to go duck shooting at Drumbeg and Lough Eske in 1940. One of them, so they told me in the village of Inver, courted a girl who worked in a local post office.

    His name? RN Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten, later Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.
  5. Jedburgh22

    Jedburgh22 Very Senior Member

    Attached is a Excel Workbook of P/Fs that are open at TNA Kew - please bear in mind that files are opened on a continual basis so this is a snapshot of the files open as of October 15 2011

    Attached Files:

    CL1 likes this.
  6. JJHH

    JJHH Member

    Attached is a Excel Workbook of P/Fs that are open at TNA Kew - please bear in mind that files are opened on a continual basis so this is a snapshot of the files open as of October 15 2011

    Is there also such an overview of SAS P/Fs?
  7. Jedburgh22

    Jedburgh22 Very Senior Member

    None of the WWII Military P/Fs have been released as yet.
  8. JJHH

    JJHH Member

    None of the WWII Military P/Fs have been released as yet.

    Why is that Steven? Because SAS is still an active unit?
  9. Jedburgh22

    Jedburgh22 Very Senior Member

    No Jelle - no WWII Military P/Fs have been released to the National Archives as yet - too many veterans still alive and the MOD charges a nice little fee with a long wait to get copies of files to families.
  10. Jedburgh22

    Jedburgh22 Very Senior Member

    Guildford diary: When spies become authors
    Tuesday, 18th October 2011

    'They were afraid. Brave men are always afraid. Courage isn't the absence of fear, it's the willingness to face fear. They faced their fears.'
    The words are familiar. Euripides rehearsed them, Seneca upheld them, Mark Twain perpetuated them. But never have they seemed as relevant as when former SOE [Special Operations Executive] agent Noreen Riols spoke them of her former fellow agents in an auditorium of stunned Guildford Book Festival goers last Sunday afternoon. That's the thing about spies, they're practical, resourceful people, not idle dreamers. Compare Franklin D. Roosevelt's "the only thing we have to fear is fear itself", or the much bandied 'keep calm and carry on' of 1939 ad infinitum, and the grounded, self-motivating quality of Riols' words could hardly be more patent.
    Today Riols is well known as a writer (she has had ten books published worldwide) and for her frequent contributions to Woman's Hour, the BBC World Service, and the press at large. For the earlier part of her life, however, her career remained a secret. Fluent in French, she entered F Section of the SOE in 1942 at the age of 17 to aid the Resistance effort in occupied France. To this day she has no idea who put her forward for the job. She is one of only six women to have attended Beaulieu, the finishing school' for agents.
    Another SOE agent who made writing his civilian occupation was Ian Fleming, creator of James Bond. This is interesting because a real James Bond would probably have looked down his nose at his creator's other life. For Bond is MI6, and as Riols said in her moving lecture, MI6 agents always viewed SOE agents as "amateur bandits", while MI5 "did everything they could to get rid of us, but they never managed, because, you see, SOE was Churchill's brainchild. It was his secret army, and he realised in his vision and his wisdom that this was a war which was going to be fought like no other war before."
    These men had charm. Riols recalls afternoon walks with an agent she only later learned specialised in silent killing, "I wonder, had I known his speciality, would I have gone to the forest with him so happily, or would I have had the courage to resist his amorous advances?" She recalls, also, meeting a "handsome, charming, pleasant, efficient" man during her service. His name was Kim Philby - the agent who had to flee England at the end of the war after being outed as a spy for the Soviet Union. "Shows what a bad lot the SOE were!" jested Keith Jeffery when he spoke at the Festival later last Sunday evening.
    Jeffery's authorised history of MI6, which was published last year, revealed that author Graham Greene also dabbled in intelligence work. "He had a walk-on part," Jeffery clarified, drawing on the evidence he gathered from records of Greene's training regime for MI6.
    Jeffery had access to the SIS archive and his book consequently uncovers a wealth of formerly classified material. But as readers of the book have noted, it nevertheless perpetuates much of the mystery intrinsic to the secret service. 'Biffy' Dunderdale, a spy Ian Fleming befriended, may well have provided inspiration for the playboy Bond, but as Jeffery said, there's no way of knowing for certain.
    When the SOE files were finally opened in 2000 Riols kept being asked the same question, "Did you know Fifi?" She knew no one by that name. By the description the media gave of her, the female SOE agent "who was used to detect whether men talked in their sleep", Riols suddenly had an inkling that she did, in fact, know this 'Fifi'. She once shared a house with a sophisticated woman who seemed to spend her life in hotels, but never seemingly on missions, "but she wasn't a tart at all. Not in the true sense. She was a rather distinguished, educated woman". It suddenly clicked.
    It is precisely this element of secrecy and mystery, external, but especially internal, to the services, I think, that often makes spies such excellent authors. While the public may be itching to know agents' true identities, spies rarely know each other. A complex character like Bond surely isn't the concentrated reflection of one manthe author knew; he's the product of the unknown, identity-shirking agents the author met and might have thought he knew, but never could; inspiration is the experience of finding a Fifi in one's bed. The spy-author may well write what he knows, but as the words of Riols and Jeffery last Sunday made manifest, 'what' can rarely truly encompass 'whom'.

    Book Blog | The Spectator
  11. arnhem2280

    arnhem2280 Member

    Access to PF's is possible provided the applicant can prove either that they are or have the permission of the PF in question or alternatively can prove that the person the file relates to has been dead for in excess of 25 years. This can be done by providing a death certificate. The forms for the application can be found on line at the Vetrans Agency (UK). The cost is £30 per file. Unless the application is made under the Freedom of Information act it can take up to 9 months. If, however, it is made quoting the FOI Act the applicant should receive the file or a meaningful reply within 20 working days. Hope this clears things up with relation to PF's.

  12. PsyWar.Org

    PsyWar.Org Archive monkey

    Arnhem, that's indeed the process for Second World War army service records. It is, however, slightly different for SOE personal files.

    These can be opened to the public for free providing proof of death can be submitted to the National Archives, e.g. death certificate, obituary, death mentioned in a suitable publication, or if the subject was born over 100 years ago.


    Access to PF's is possible provided the applicant can prove either that they are or have the permission of the PF in question or alternatively can prove that the person the file relates to has been dead for in excess of 25 years. This can be done by providing a death certificate. The forms for the application can be found on line at the Vetrans Agency (UK). The cost is £30 per file. Unless the application is made under the Freedom of Information act it can take up to 9 months. If, however, it is made quoting the FOI Act the applicant should receive the file or a meaningful reply within 20 working days. Hope this clears things up with relation to PF's.

  13. arnhem2280

    arnhem2280 Member

    Hi Lee

    Yes, I was aware of the SOE files at the NA. They did ( I am told) for a short period of time allow access without proof of death but quickly changed the system to the one you have described.

  14. Greg Ballard

    Greg Ballard Junior Member

    Hi, my name is Greg Ballard and I am trying to find out any information I can about my father Stanley Selwood Ballard, like so many he rarely spoke of what occurred during his time in the forces. We do know that at one time he was with the 420 RSU working on Spits and Tempests, we have just found out that he was apparently drafted into the SOE as an agent and was dropped from Lysanders behind enemy lines. Any more info would be greatly appreciated and would help all the family fill a few gaps Thank you in anticipation. Stan Ballard 1915-2000.
  15. Jedburgh22

    Jedburgh22 Very Senior Member

    Hi Greg,
    Could you please say where he was meant to have dropped - there is no SOE P/F for him - but many files did not survive. I suspect he might have been working on one of the airfields in Yugoslavia set up by the Balkan Air Terminal Service which had several airfields behind enemy lines.
  16. Jedburgh22

    Jedburgh22 Very Senior Member

    Leif Hovelsen
    Leif Hovelsen, the Norwegian resistance fighter who has died aged 87, was captured and tortured by the Gestapo but determined on reconciliation, not revenge, after the war; later he became a friend and confidante of Soviet dissidents struggling against their own totalitarian regime.
    5:51PM BST 23 Oct 2011Comment
    The story of Hovelsen's torture and subsequent forgiveness of his German captors is told in his book Out of the Evil Night (1959). He was 19 when, on June 9 1943, the Gestapo burst into his family's Oslo home. He had been betrayed by a colleague in the Norwegian resistance and, as he was led away, his mother called out: "Leif, never forget Jesus!" Though embarrassed at the time, this advice stayed with him for the rest of his life.

    Leif Hovelsen
    He was held in solitary confinement at the Grini concentration camp, and over the next two years was taken occasionally to Gestapo headquarters in Oslo for questioning. During one interrogation he was beaten so severely that his hearing was impaired. His crime had been to carry short-wave radio transmitters, used for keeping in touch with Britain, to resistance fighters as far as 100 miles outside Oslo.
    Threatened with execution, Hovelsen was offered freedom if he would inform on his friends in the resistance. But "I felt in my heart there was no other option than a clear 'No'. As I was about to take this deep resolve, something extraordinary took place. I experienced the contradiction of being truly free at the unique point of having lost everything."
    By chance Hovelsen escaped deportation to Sachsenhausen, which resulted in the deaths of dozens of fellow prisoners. When he was finally liberated in 1945, British troops offered him the chance to punish his captors; Hovelsen ordered German officers to undertake the punishment drills to which he had been subjected, but his instinct for retribution upset him. "I wanted to fight for right and justice, but this was lust for revenge," he wrote. "There was no excuse".
    When he offered forgiveness to one Gestapo officer who had tortured him, the man said nothing "but his body shook all over". Just before his subsequent execution, the torturer had asked to take Communion. Hovelsen was to write: "When I answered the Nazis with the same treatment meted out to me, their spirit had conquered me. When I forgave I had conquered National Socialism."
    After the war his reconciliation work included the issue of reparation payments by Germany. Thousands who had been concentration camp prisoners demanded compensation. How much, however, became a controversial issue. Hovelsen saw it as a chance to rebuild relations with Germany. He summed up a possible compromise in five steps which he presented to Norwegian Prime Minister Einar Gerhardsen and the German government in Bonn. The result was a meeting in Oslo, where a Reparations Treaty was signed in 1959.
    Leif Hovelsen was born on November 1 1923 in Oslo. His father was a professional skier and Leif too enjoyed the sport. As a university student he acquired a radio and began tuning into broadcasts from London, which he translated and distributed. Soon he began supplying receivers to others.
    After the reconciliation between Norway and Germany, Hovelsen began to focus on the plight of Soviet dissidents. In due course he became close friends with the political activists Vladimir Bukovsky, Vladimir Maximov, the sculptor Ernst Neizvestny, and the human rights activist Andrei Sakharov.
    Hovelsen campaigned for Sakharov to win the Nobel Peace Prize in 1975. Meanwhile Neizvestny, who created Nikita Khrushchev's tombstone, wrote the foreword for Hovelsen's book Through the Walls – Ways to Reconciliation (2006). "When I met Leif Hovelsen we became friends immediately," the sculptor noted. "We realised that the most important thing in this life is human dignity."
    Leif Hovelsen never married.
    Leif Hovelsen, born November 1 1923, died September 18 2011

    Leif Hovelsen - Telegraph
  17. Smudger Jnr

    Smudger Jnr Our Man in Berlin


    What a write up. Leif Hovelsen must have been a wonderful person.

    :poppy: R.I.P. :poppy:

  18. Jedburgh22

    Jedburgh22 Very Senior Member

  19. kingarthur

    kingarthur Well-Known Member

  20. Jedburgh22

    Jedburgh22 Very Senior Member

    I have been looking at some of the Section D Reports for 1940 - Section D was an SIS Sabotage Organisation set up in 1938 that merged into SOE in 1940.

    It reports are interesting as there seems to have been an active railway / industrial sabotage net doing some good work in Germany from 1939 onwards, after Dunkirk it seems to have used a lot of resources in supplying the infant Auxiliary Units with explosives and training materials.

    The activities of Section D seem to have been Pan European but they were stymied to a certain extent by the German SF in the Balkans and Rumania

    Attached Files:

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