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The War In The Shadows by Charles Whiting


The War In The Shadows is an exciting book about the spymasters of World War II. Enter into a devious world where you don’t know who to trust, and one misstep could mean death. Charles Whiting looks at American, British, Russian and German spy networks and the men who ran them, although it leans toward German operations.

Two of the many covert operations examined in The War In The Shadows stand out in my mind.

In the first one, the Germans impersonated the Dutch resistance. The Allies would drop them guns, ammunition and other supplies, thinking they were helping the Dutch resistance while all the time they were giving them into German hands. Agents that they parachuted in were immediately captured and imprisoned. The plot is finally revealed when two agents manage to escape and make their way back to friendly territory. The Germans tried to discredit these men by spreading rumours that they were actually German agents who pretended to escape in order to spread confusion and prevent the Allies from assisting the Dutch resistance. So even when the agents could expose the plot, it took a while before they were believed.

In the second one, the British found a man who had died of pneumonia - which would give the appearance of having died by drowning. After getting permission from the man’s relatives, they created a false military identity for him. Every detail was considered down to ticket stubs from a theatre presentation he supposedly attended. Then, “top secret” papers were placed on him, and the corpse was set adrift off the enemy shoreline to give the impression that he had been on a critical mission when he was shot down. The Germans found the body and the papers. They did everything they could to verify them before concluding they were genuine. The result was that the Germans were deceived about where the Allies were launching their invasion.

If you enjoy tales of deception or World War II stories, I am sure you will like this book. It also discusses the kidnapping and rescue of Hitler’s friend Mussolini. It is part of a three-book series.

This book may be purchased on Amazon here.

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