Codebreakers

Codebreakers : The Inside Story of Bletchley Park

3.71 (264 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

Bletchley Park was arguably the most successful intelligence operation in world history, the top scecret workplace of the remarkable people who cracked Germany's vaunted Enigma Code. Almost to the end of the war, the Germans had firm faith in the Enigma ciphering machine, but in fact the codebreakers were deciphering nearly 4,000 German transmissions daily by 1942. Indeed, Winston Churchill hailed the work of Bletchley Park as the 'secret weapon' that won the war. Only now, nearly half a century since the end of the Second World War, have any of the men and women in this group come forward to tell this remarkable story in their own words - a story that an oath of secrecy long prevented them from revealing. In Codebreakers , F. H. Hinsley and Alan Stripp have gathered together twenty-seven first-hand accounts of the most amazing feats in intelligence history. These engaging memoirs, each written by a different member of the codebreakers team, recount the long hours working in total secrecy and the feelings of camaraderie, tension, excitement, and frustration as these men and women, both British and American, did some of the most important work of the war. This book is intended for readers interested in the Second World War and Intelligence work; historians of the Second World War, cryptography, intelligence.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 342 pages
  • 129.54 x 190.5 x 20.32mm | 158.76g
  • Oxford University Press
  • Oxford Paperbacks
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • New edition
  • New edition
  • 019285304X
  • 9780192853042

Review Text

The one great success story of British Intelligence was the wartime cracking of Germany's Enigma code and the consequent ability of the Allies to predict with near certainty both the strategy and the tactics of the Axis enemy. This achievement, if it did not win the war, certainly shortened it by a considerable period. It is ironic then that not until the 1970s did any hint of it emerge, and much of the story remains wrapped in Official Secrecy. Happily some of the veil is lifted in this series of reminiscences from people who were among the some 8000 who ultimately worked on the project. The result is fascinating and even at times moving, as these seemingly powerless and sightless moles were able to perceive both the progress and the reality of the war. The editors have done an impeccable job. (Kirkus UK)show more

Table of contents

Introduction - the influence of Ultra in World War II, F.H. Hinsley. Part 1 The production of Ultra intelligence: life in and out of Hut 3, William Millward; the duty officer Hut 3, Ralph Bennett; a naval officer in Hut 3, Edward Thomas; the Z watch in Hut 4 part I, Alec Dakin; the Z watch in Hut 4 part II, Walter Eytan; Italian naval decrypts, Patrick Wilkinson; Naval Section VI, Vivienne Alford; Anglo-American signals intelligence co-operation, Telford Taylor; an American at Bletchley, Robert M. Slusser; Bletchley Park, the Admiralty and naval Enigma, F.H. Hinsley. Part 2 Enigma: the Enigma machine - its mechanism and use, Alan Stripp; Hut 6 - early days, Stuart Milner-Barry; Hut 6 - 1941-1945, Derek Taunt; Hut 8 and naval Enigma part I, Joan Murray; Hut 8 and naval Enigma part II, Rolf Noskwith; the Abwehr Enigma, Peter Twinn; the bombes, Diana Payne; Part 3 Fish: an introduction to Fish, F.H. Hinsley; Enigma and Fish, Jack Good; the Tunny machine, Ken Halton; Operation Tunny, Gil Hayward. Part 4 Field ciphers and tactical codes: recollections of Bletchley Park, France and Cairo, Henry Dryden; army Ultra's poor relations, Noel Currer-Briggs; navy Ultra's poor relations, Christopher Morris; tactical signals of the German air force, Peter Gray Lucas. Part 5 Japanese codes: Japanese naval codes, Michael Loewe; Bedford - Bletchley - Kilindini - Colombo, Hugh Denham; Japanese military codes, Maurice Wiles; Japanese army air force codes at Bletchley Park and Delhi, Alan Stripp; recollections of "temps perdu" at Bletchley Park, Carmen Blacker. Appendix: how the Bletchley Park buildings took shape, Bob Watson.show more

About F. H. Hinsley

About the Editors: F.H. Hinsley was formerly Master of St John's College and Professor of the History of International Relations at the University of Cambridge. He is the author of the four-volume history British Intelligence in the Second World War. Alan Stripp is Director of Cambridge University Summer Schools on British Secret Services.show more

Rating details

264 ratings
3.71 out of 5 stars
5 18% (48)
4 45% (120)
3 28% (74)
2 6% (16)
1 2% (6)
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