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SPECIAL OPERATIONS EXECUTIVE, 1940-1946:
SUBVERSION AND SABOTAGE DURING WORLD WAR II
Series One: SOE Operations in Western Europe

Part 2: France: Political and Planning Files, Circuits and Missions, 1940-1947
(Public Record Office Class HS 6/308-470)

"F Section sent 393 officers to France. 119 of these were arrested or killed by the Germans. Of those arrested only seventeen came back."
HS 6/469

  • There is a strong focus on the political aspects of resistance work.
  • There is much material which is relevant for the immediate post-war period.
  • Relations with Charles de Gaulle and the Free French movement are fully analysed.
  • Many files cover the 'Carte' organisation which attained the position of a semi-official advisory council co-ordinating resistance groups in the Free and Occupied zones. There is much evidence about in-fighting, treachery and its demise.
  • There are good documents on French resistance in the Vercors region.
  • The main planning files of Section 'D' and all the preparations for D-Day are included.
  • There are files on coup de main and raiding parties for attacks on power stations, electricity pylons and an oil refinery.
  • There is a long sequence of files on all Circuits and Missions in France.
  • The problems of security and German penetration of various networks, the arrest of Prosper and other resistance leaders, including the capture and execution of Jean Moulin, are well analysed.
  • There is much material on the difficulties SOE faced in trying to work with so many different organisations in France with their different aims and political affiliations.
  • Reports by the Farmer circuit with its vital intelligence on V1 sites, Pedlar's information on Von Kluge's new headquarters near Verzy, and the constant stream of information prior to D-Day all provided useful miltary intelligence for the Allies.

Lysander



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