By Simon Kitson
From 1940 to 1942, French mystery brokers arrested greater than thousand spies operating for the Germans and achieved numerous dozen of them—all regardless of the Vichy government’s declared collaboration with the 3rd Reich. A formerly untold bankruptcy within the historical past of global struggle II, this duplicitous task is the gripping topic of the quest for Nazi Spies, a tautly narrated chronicle of the Vichy regime’s makes an attempt to take care of sovereignty whereas aiding its Nazi occupiers.
Simon Kitson informs this notable tale with findings from his investigation—the first through any historian—of hundreds of thousands of Vichy records seized in flip by way of the Nazis and the Soviets and again to France basically within the Nineteen Nineties. His pioneering detective paintings uncovers a difficult paradox: a French govt that used to be removing left-wing activists and supporters of Charles de Gaulle’s unfastened French forces used to be additionally operating to undermine the effect of German spies who have been pursuing an analogous Gaullists and resisters. In mild of this obvious contradiction, Kitson doesn't deny that Vichy France was once devoted to aiding the Nazi reason, yet illuminates the advanced agendas that characterised the collaboration and exhibits the way it was once attainable to be either anti-German and anti-Gaullist.
Combining nuanced conclusions with dramatic money owed of the lives of spies on each side, the search for Nazi Spies provides an enormous new size to our realizing of the French challenge less than German career and the shadowy global of global struggle II espionage.
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Additional resources for The Hunt for Nazi Spies: Fighting Espionage in Vichy France
Finally, since the Germans wanted to permanently divide France, what better way than to encourage the French to work against each other? It might seem surprising that so many French citizens were working for the German services. 3 German spies can be categorized according to their principle motives as patriots, ideologues, proﬁteers, the sentimental, adventurers, the vulnerable, and the reluctant. Some secret agents worked out of patriotism. They can be divided into two groups. Firstly, there was a small core of German citizens.
These interrogations shed light on the methods used on these natives to convince them to work against France. 16 France’s most senior oﬃcial in North Africa, General Weygand, pointed out how important this problem was [ 30 ] Chapter Two in a letter addressed to head of state Pétain in March of 1941: “It is also clear that the Germans have pursued long-term propaganda with our North African prisoners; three thousand of them have been selected and gathered in a camp around Berlin. ). Propaganda is said to have been organized through ﬁlms, brochures and discussions in Arabic.
However, the Nazis were not only interested in weakening and partitioning France but also in exploiting it. As soon as they arrived in the occupied zone, Nazi services compiled an inventory of works of art. 3 Massive exploitation of the French economy was also a feature of occupation as the Germans sought resources to bolster their war eﬀort. The occupier made huge demands on the industrial and agricultural sectors, transporting large quantities of produce eastwards to the Reich. Each day, occupation costs ranging from 300 to 500 million francs had to be paid by the Vichy government.
The Hunt for Nazi Spies: Fighting Espionage in Vichy France by Simon Kitson