Wednesday, January 8, 2014

The M Room: Secret Listeners who Bugged the Nazis


This is the remarkable story of the German émigrés who fled Hitler’s regime and became secret listeners for British Intelligence during World War II, brought vividly to life with the assistance of a former internee on the Isle of Man: Fritz Lustig.

Working from Latimer House and Wilton Park Fritz Lustig and his colleagues (together with other secret listeners at Trent Park) bugged the conversations of over 10,000 prisoners of war, ranging from U-boat crews and Luftwaffe pilots to high-ranking German generals, in their fight to secure intelligence information to win the war.

These transcripts remained classified until 1999 but the tireless efforts of the book’s author, Helen Fry, now reveal how the work of Fritz Lustig and his colleagues was as important as those cracking the Enigma Code at Bletchley Park in Buckinghamshire.

A revealing insight into the work of British Intelligence, the book reproduces a selection of the sometimes graphic conversations that took place, and tells how prisoners were tricked into revealing classified information.

But the book also makes extensive use of interviews and the unpublished memoir of Fritz Lustig and his wife Susan, who also worked for British Intelligence, which further details the flight of Fritz Lustig from Germany, his arrival in England as a penniless refugee and his subsequent incarceration at the Peveril Camp in Peel on the Isle of Man.

Both paperback and kindle versions available from Amazon.


Valerie Caine
© January 2014

(Courtesy of Manx Life)


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