This is a true story of a force of ‘licensed to kill’ secret agents, commanded by a real war time secret service chief code names M, with whom Ian Fleming worked, and upon whom his James Bond stories were based.
Brigadier Colin Gubbins was M, the Special Operations Executive was his Secret Service, Professor Dudley Newitt was Q and Captain Gus March-Phillips commanded ‘Maid of Honor Force’, the team of ‘James Bonds’ who, in a daring operation, sailed a Q ship to West Africa and stole three enemy ships from a neutral Spanish port on the volcanic island of Fernando Po. Ian Fleming worked closely with M to oil the wheels that made the operation possible, and prepared the cover story, in which the British Government lied in order to conceal British responsibility for the raid. M’s agents prepared the ground on Fernando Po, even enmeshing the Governor in a honey trap. March-Phillips and his team carried out the raid successfully in January 1942, despite much opposition from the local regular Army and Navy commanders, and in the face of overwhelming odds. Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden told Fleming’s lies on the international stage, denying any British complicity in the operation. As a result, a secrecy embargo enveloped Operation POSTMASTER until recently.
The author, an experienced criminal QC, proves beyond doubt that this thrilling operation, and the men who carried it out, were the inspiration for Fleming’s James Bond.
This real life ripping yarn about an officially-sanctioned act of wartime piracy involving an unconventional Norfolk hero who was destined to become a pillar of the county establishment surpasses the most hyperbole-laden Hollywood thriller. Making... [read full review]Eastern Daily Press
The full story of the events leading up to, during and after SOE's Operation Postmaster are revealed by Brian Lett in his latest book. In this detailed account of the mission, the author also presents... [read full review]Britain at War
Exactly who inspired James Bond has long benn discussed by historians and biographers alike, but now a detailed and fascinating new book - Ian Fleming and SOEs Operation Postmaster – attempts to join the dots... [read full review]Yorkshire Post and Yorkshire Evening Post
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Ian Flemings Secret War
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About Brian Lett
BRIAN LETT is a QC and criminal barrister of many years’ experience. His father was a member of the Special Operations Executive during the Second World War, and he himself met Major General Sir Colin Gubbins, the original M, a number of times when a young man. However, what led to his writing this book was the lifting in recent years of the long term security embargo and the release of a number of secure National Archives files on the story of Operation POSTMASTER. Using these and evidence from the Imperial War Museum, London, he has built a convincing case as to the true origin of Ian Fleming’s James Bond. He is currently working on a sequel chronicling March-Phillipps and the men of the Maid Honor ’s thrilling exploits throughout the remainder of the War. This is Brian’s second book. The first, SAS in Tuscany, was published by Pen and Sword in 2011. Brian is married with four children, and has homes in Somerset and Kew.
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