Book Review - Operation Fortitude - Joshua Levine (2011)
|Cover - Operation Fortitude: the Story|
of the Spy Operation that Saved D-Day
Operation Fortitude: The Story of the Spy Operation that Saved D-Day. Joshua Levine. Lyons Press. 2011.
In the lead-up to the D-Day landings in Normany, the Allies operated a number of plans designed to mislead the Germans as to the actual landing zone. The overall plan codenamed Operation Bodyguard had several sub-plans, one of which was Operation Fortitude (North and South). This plan was to convince the Germans that the Allies were planning landings in Norway and Pas de Calais. The Allies used a number of ploys, including their network of double agents, to pull the wool over the eyes of the Germans.
While the title might lead one to believe that the author will focus on the 1944 plan for Operation Fortitude, Levine helpfully begins much earlier, in 1940. In preparation for Operation Sealion, the Germans sent a number of poorly equipped agents to England with a view to sending back weather reports and other helpful information. The vast majority of these hapless agents were snapped up by the British and several were turned into double agents. Levine gives a very thorough and accurate history of these agents and how they played their own role in Operation Fortitude... convincing the Germans that they had active and useful spies in England.
I found this book to be eminently readable and very well researched. It provides a very accurate and comprehensive portrayal of the double cross system and was a pleasure to read.
4.5 out of 5 - well researched and well written