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Surveying the expanding conflict in Europe during one of his famous fireside chats in 1940, President Franklin Roosevelt ominously warned that "we know of other methods, new methods of attack. The Trojan horse. The fifth column that betrays a nation unprepared for treachery. Spies, saboteurs, and traitors are the actors in this new strategy." Having identified a new type of war — a shadow war — being perpetrated by Hitler's Germany, FDR decided to fight fire with fire, authorizing the formation of the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) to organize and oversee covert operations. Based on an extensive analysis of OSS records, including the vast trove of records released by the CIA in the 1980s and '90s, as well as a new set of interviews with OSS veterans conducted by the author and a team of American scholars from 1995 to 1997, The Shadow War Against Hitler is the full story of America's far-flung secret intelligence apparatus during World War II.
In addition to its responsibilities generating, processing, and interpreting intelligence information, the OSS orchestrated all manner of dark operations, including extending feelers to anti-Hitler elements, infiltrating spies and sabotage agents behind enemy lines, and implementing propaganda programs. Planned and directed from Washington, the anti-Hitler campaign was largely conducted in Europe, especially through the OSS's foreign outposts in Bern and London. A fascinating cast of characters made the OSS run: William J. Donovan, one of the most decorated individuals in the American military who became the driving force behind the OSS's genesis; Allen Dulles, the future CIA chief who ran the Bern office, which he called "the big window onto the fascist world"; a veritable pantheon of Ivy League academics who were recruited to work for the intelligence services; and, not least, Roosevelt himself. A major contribution of the book is the story of how FDR employed Hitler's former propaganda chief, Ernst "Putzi" Hanfstengl, as a private spy.
More than a record of dramatic incidents and daring personalities, this book adds significantly to our understanding of how the United States fought World War II. It demonstrates that the extent, and limitations, of secret intelligence information shaped not only the conduct of the war but also the face of the world that emerged from the shadows.
Columbia University Press
— Mitchell McNaylor
— Maochun Yu, United States Naval Academy
— Rorin M. Platt
A well-researched and balanced study.
— Steve Hewitt
— Patricia Kollander
— Steve Hewitt
A thrilling look into the work of the first central secret service of the U.S.
— Raymond Millen
— Freie Universitat Berlin
IntroductionI. The SettingHistorical PerspectivesThe Place of the OSS in American HistoryWithin the Secret Intelligence ServiceAnatomy of the OSSII. Donovan on the Offensive and America's Path to WarThe fifth column as a dangerWilliam J. Donovan's lessons for AmericaOn the eve of confrontationWilliam J. Donovan as Director of Intelligence and the origins of the COI -The peace feeler of Federico Stallforth - Pearl HarborThe COI and the New "World Pattern"Germany's Military and Economic Capabilities in the COI's calculations, 1941 - Assessing the Situation in the EastBetween Opinion Research and CounterespionageThe Foreign Nationalities Branch and the Role of German Émigrés - German-Americans, Exile, and PropagandaExcursus: Franklin D. Roosevelt, John Franklin Carter and Ernst "Putzi" HanfstaenglThe Secret Carter Organization - The "S"-Project: Ernst "Putzi" Hanfstaengl in the Service of American Secret Intelligence - Analyses of Germany and Propaganda Plans - The End of the "S"-ProjectThe COI in Crisis and the Creation of the OSSIII. 1943, The Turning PointStrategies and discoursesState Department versus OSS: Initial Speculation about the German collapse, 1942 - The Discussion About Strategic Priorities, 1943Lessons from Moscow and the OSS' AnswerThe National Committee for a Free Germany and the Beginnings of the Crisis Between the Allies - Secret Intelligence Initiatives for Mobilizing German ÉmigrésGermany and the GermansThe Mood of the Germans as Assessed by the OSS - A German Parallel: 1918 and 1943Ideology and Economy in the Bombing WarTheories and Experiences-The Enemy Objectives Unit (EOU) - From Casablanca to POINTBLANK - Tensions with the British and the philosophy of the EOUIV. Bern: the Big Window Onto the Fascist WorldAllen Dulles and the Establishment of the OSS Outpost in Bern - Psychological and Military Warfare - Opportunists and Conspirators - The German V Weapons and the Attack on Peenemünde - The Wood StoryV. Media War and Black PropagandaThe Difficult Beginnings of the OSS Morale Operations - From the Hamilton Plan to Operation Sauerkraut - Blankenhorn's Soldiers Councils Project and the "Neues Deutschland" Underground movement - OSS Radio War: Joker and Matchbox - Operation Musac: American Pop Music in the War Against HitlerVI. Penetration of GermanyConceptionsThe Infiltration of Agents into Germany in the British Calculation - American Secret Intelligence Plans for Operations in the German Reich - The Post-invasion Syndrome and the Significance of the OSS Labor Division for Operations in GermanyExcursusPaul Hagen, the Origins of the OSS Labor Division, and the Trade Union Contacts of British Intelligence - Goldberg's 'Philosophy of the Underground' and the FAUST PlanOperations"Special Operations": Foreign Workers and CALPO Communists as "Trojan horses" - Infiltrating SI Agents into the ReichVII. Götterdämmerung - Between Peace and WarPhantom Stronghold in the Alps: The Redoubt as an Idée Fixe? Defense of the Alps and the Ideological Phantom of the "Nazi Underground" - The Redoubt in the Calculation of the OSS - The Alpine Fortress from the Perspective of British Intelligence - The "Redoubt Psychosis" of the Americans and the Perspective of Gauleiter Hofer - Eisenhower, Marshall, RooseveltLast-minute PutschThe Munich "Pheasant Hunt" and American intelligence - The Peace Feelers of Ritter von Epp - The Munich Putsch of April 28 - Operation Capricorn: Simulated Resistance Under the Sign of ZodiacGood and Bad GermansAllen Dulles as Promoter of Postwar German PoliticiansVIII. The Dream of the Miracle War: the Legacy of the OSSConclusion and SummaryThe End of the OSS and the Origins of the Myth - Outline of the Shadow War: A summary - The Legacy of the OSS3
Columbia University Press