SOE in Denmark (Hardback)
The Special Operations Executive’s Danish Section in WW2
From a small number of clandestine activities against the German occupation of Denmark in 1940, a sophisticated resistance movement developed which by 1944, with the support of Special Operations Executive, had become a highly effective intelligence gathering and sabotage organisation.
Denmark is composed of a mainland and more than 500 islands, a fifth of which are inhabited, and the countryside is devoid of any inaccessible or mountainous region. Together this made communication between resistance cells difficult and meant that there were no natural bases from which guerrilla operations could be mounted. Nevertheless, thanks to supply drops of explosives, weapons and ammunition arranged by SOE, the Danes harassed the Germans and raised the moral of the Danish people in the latter, and most brutal, stages of the war.
This largely forgotten story of SOE and its agents in Denmark, the latter facing extremely hazardous conditions, was written immediately after the war by a SOE staff member and read and validated by the Director of SOE, Major General Colin Gubbins. A very large number of documents were burned at SOE’s London headquarters in Baker Street when the organisation was wound down in 1946 making this history of the Danish Section an invaluable and irreplaceable study.
SOE in Denmark was written at a time when SOE was still largely unknown to the general public and its operations a closely guarded secret. It was expected that its activities would never be officially acknowledged and the study of its actions in Denmark was compiled with the aim of provide a lasting record of its achievement. Within its pages we read of the dangers the agents faced, the logistical mountains they had to overcome, and the successes achieved in the face of a ruthless enemy. Completed with unique photographs from the Danish archives, SOE in Denmark is an essential addition to the SOE literature.
What did SOE really achieve during the Second World War? Why were so many agents parachuted into enemy hands? Who chose to back Communist guerrillas in Yugoslavia, Hungary, Romania, Albania, Greece and Malaya in preference to other anti-Axis movements? In this new and revised edition Nigel West strips away the secrecy that has surrounded the Special Operations Executive since it was officially wound up in 1946, and reveal the breath-taking political naivety, operational incompetence and ruthless manipulation. Despite the heroism of individual agents who suffered appalling privation to further…By Nigel West
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