FRANCE

The Interwar Period

K - Z

Kahn, David. "The Fonds de Moscou, TICOM, and the Nerve of a Spy." Intelligence and National Security 24, no. 6 (Dec. 2009): 865-875.

The author reviews French pre-war documents (the Fonds de Moscou), returned to France after being held in the Soviet Union; German pre-war documents (TICOM) previously held in the United Kingdom and returned to the Federal Republic; and a 1930 document concerning the activities of Hans-Thilo Schmidt.

Keiger, J.F.V. "'Perfidious Albion?' French Perceptions of Britain as an Ally after the First World War." Intelligence and National Security 13, no. 1 (Spring 1998): 37-52.

Abstract: "[A]ttempts in 1919 and 1921 to convert Franco-British friendship into a formal alliance laid bare the thought processes and mentalities of French decision-makers and their seeming inability to assess Britain accurately as a potential ally."

Miller, Michael B. Shanghai on the Metro: Spies, Intrigue and the French between the Wars. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1995.

Jackson, I&NS 12.4, finds this a "fascinating study" of interwar France. The work is "based on a truly formidable body of research.... Particularly impressive is the author's use of the German archives to gauge the effectiveness of French counter-intelligence." However, the product is a "jungle of narrative detail" within which the author's overall argument is difficult to keep in sight.

Paillole, Paul [Col.]

1. Services spéciaux [?sèciaux], 1935-1945. Paris: Robert Laffont, 1975. Fighting the Nazis: French Intelligence and Counterintelligence, 1935-1945. New York: Enigma, 2003.

Porch, I&NS 2.1, sees this work as offering "a frank and revealing glimpse into the workings of the service de renseignement, the counter-espionage section of the military Deuxième bureau from 1935 to 1945." For Peake, Studies 48.1, this "is a tale of French political maneuvering as much as counterespionage operations." Nonetheless, the author's "assiduous application and articulation of counterintelligence principles demonstrate their universality while making clear that it is the people who make the difference."

2. Notre espion chez Hitler. Paris: Robert Laffont, 1985.

Porch, I&NS 2.1, notes that the title subject of this work is "Hans Schmidt, code named H.E. or Asché..., employee in the German code and cipher section, who provided the French with much useful information between 1932 and the Fall of France in 1940, most notably on the development of the Enigma codes." The author has "the disconcerting habit of reproducing verbatim conversations at which he could not possibly have been present.... [I]t is difficult to be certain where fact leaves off and fiction takes over.... In a word, Monsieur Paillole's book needs to be read with great caution."

3. with Alain-Gilles Minella. L'homme des services secrets. Paris: Julliard, 1995.

According to Pennetier, I&NS 11.4, Paillole worked in the German counter-espionage section of the Deuxième bureau prior to World War II. As opposed to his earlier two books, this work "deals much more with wartime and especially on how ... pre-war intelligence services continued their work throughout most of the occupation of France."

Porch, Douglas. "French Intelligence and the Fall of France, 1930-40." Intelligence and National Security 4, no. 1 (Jan. 1989): 28-58.

Porch swims against the received tide of praise for French intelligence in the prewar years. He states: "Despite the praise lavished on the pre-war French intelligence, its organization and lack of influence was almost bound to condemn it to incoherence in the collection of information, and confusion in assessing the threat to France."

Sharp, Alan. "'Quelqu'un nous écoute': French Interception of German Telegraphic and Telephonic Communications during the Paris Peace Conference, 1919: A Note." Intelligence and National Security 3, no. 4 (Oct. 1988): 124-127.

Thomas, Martin.

1. "Anglo-French Imperial Relations in the Arab World: Intelligence Liaison and Nationalist Disorder, 1920–1939." Diplomacy & Statecraft 17, no. 4 (2006): 771-798.

2. "Colonial States as Intelligence States: Security Policing and the Limits of Colonial Rule in France's Muslim Territories, 1920-40." Journal of Strategic Studies 28, no. 6 (2005): 1033-1060.

From abstract: "[F]ew colonial states had sufficient bureaucratic substance to operate separately of indigenous society.... [S]tate intelligence gathering ... activities were multifaceted.... Th[e] same agencies ... that amassed information about indigenous populations also sought to control the movement of knowledge within local society in order to mould popular opinion, or, at the very least, shape the views of influential elites.... In this sense,... colonial states were 'intelligence states.'"

3. "Crisis Management in Colonial States: Intelligence and Counter-Insurgency in Morocco and Syria after the First World War." Intelligence and National Security 21, no. 5 (Oct. 2006): 697-716.

This article "analyses the performance of French security services confronted with violent unrest and communal rebellion in Morocco and Syria in the 1920s.... [T]he central proposition ... is that the inter-war protectorates, mandates and colonies stretching in an arc through the Arab world were 'intelligence states.'"

Young, Robert J.

1. "French Military Intelligence and the Franco-Italian Alliance, 1933-1939." Historical Journal 28, no. 1 (Mar. 1985): 143-168.

2. "French Military Intelligence and Nazi Germany, 1938-1939." In Knowing One's Enemies: Intelligence Assessment Before the Two World Wars, ed. Ernest R. May, 271-309. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1984.

3. "The Use and Abuse of Fear: France and the Air Menace in the 1930s." Intelligence and National Security 2, no. 4 (Oct. 1987): 88-109.

 

Return to France Table of Contents