OSS and the French Resistance

Beavan, Colin. Operation Jedburgh: D-Day and America’s First Shadow War. New York: Penguin, 2006.

According to Peake, Studies 50.3 (Sep. 2006) and Intelligencer 15.2 (Fall-Winter 2006-2007), the author "includes a brief epilogue and a lengthy preface that digresses into gratuitous attacks on the CIA for its postwar covert action programs and the War on Terror. The preface also pays tribute to his grandfather, an OSS officer who worked with the Jeds but was not part of the Jedburgh teams. Beavan's claim that his grandfather was later the head of all CIA clandestine operations is incorrect."

Dreux, William B. No Bridges Blown. Notre Dame, IN: University of Notre Dame Press, 1971. This is the "[s]tory of an OSS Jedburgh operative in France in WWII" and is "one of the few books ever written about the Jeds by a Jed."

Ford, Roger. Steel From The Sky: The Jedburgh Raiders, France 1944. London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 2004.

According to Peake, Studies 49.1 (2005), the author tells "the stories of many of the [Jedburgh] teams in the field[;]... describes how they evolved organizationally[;]... recounts the seemingly endless ... bureaucratic struggles for power within SOE, the inter-allied battles with the French and OSS over responsibilities, and the team training programs and equipment that had to be developed from scratch.... Unfortunately, he does not provide source notes; however, he does mention some sources in the narrative that check out well."

Peake, Studies 50.3 (Sep. 2006) and Intelligencer 15.2 (Fall-Winter 2006-2007), adds that "Ford has relatively short descriptions about many teams," and reiterates that the author's "failure to include source notes reduces the scholarly value of his otherwise impressive contribution."

Frenay, Henri. Tr., Dan Hofstadter. The Night Will End. New York: McGraw Hill, 1976. London: Abelard, 1976.

Petersen: "Information on OSS relations with the French resistance."

Grell, William F. "A Marine With OSS." Marine Corps Gazette 29 (Dec. 1945): 14-18.

Petersen: "OSS aid to the resistance in France."

Irwin, Will [LTCOL (Ret.)]. The Jedburghs: The Secret History of the Allied Special Forces, France 1944. New York: Public Affairs, 2005.

Peake, Studies 50.3 (Sep. 2006) and Intelligencer 15.2 (Fall-Winter 2006-2007), finds that the author "tells the story of six representative Jedburgh teams in considerable detail while mentioning others that interacted with them." His epilogue is "comprehensive, interesting and informative. It tells what happened to many of the Jeds.... He also includes key members of SOE and military participants who contributed to the success of the Jedburgh program." To this, Huck, Periscope (Summer 2006), adds that the author's account of the Jedburghs "provides the essentials, although not always as clearly as it might."

For Schwonek, Air & Space Power Journal 22.3 (Fall 2008), Irwin offers "a straightforward history of the Jedburgh teams from their founding, through recruitment and training, to their deployment in France, starting in June 1944.... In general, the book relates the story of the Jedburghs without reference to any of the major or minor controversies in the professional or scholarly fields." This is "a lively introduction to one the most important ventures of special forces" during World War II; however, for "deeper insights, historians and military professionals will have to look to the US Army's official history or collections of published documents."

Kehoe, Robert R. "1944: An Allied Team with the French Resistance." Studies in Intelligence (Winter 1998-1999): 15-50.

This is the author's memoir of service as a radioman with "Jed Team Frederick." He covers the training received both in the United States and England, preparations for the drop into France, and activities after the team's insertion into Brittany on 9 June 1944.

Miller, Gene E. [SFC/USA] "MI Corps Hall of Fame: Virginia Hall." Military Intelligence 20.3 (Jul.-Sep. 1994): 44-45.

Nelson, Wayne. "Women Spies of the OSS." World War II (Jun. 1997) []. "Female Spies Rendered Valuable Service to the OSS in the Days Following the Invasion of Southern France." CIRA Newsletter 22, no. 3 (Winter 1997-1998): 27-30.

Nelson was with the Strategic Service Section detachment with the 36th Division, U.S. Seventh Army, in the Fall of 1944 when it crossed the Moselle River. He shares some stories here of courage and ingenuity on the part of female agents in across-the-line missions.

Parnell, Ben. Carpetbaggers -- America's Secret War in Europe: A Story of the World War II Carpetbaggers 801st/492nd Bombardment Group (H) U.S. Army, Eighth Air Force. Rev. ed. Austin, TX: Eakin, 1993.

From publisher: This is the "story of a highly secret venture carried out by the OSS and the Eighth Air Force which assisted friendly underground groups by flying thousands of tons of arms and supplies as well as agents behind enemy lines." Knouse,, views this as "the definitive book on the operation," and advises buying the revised edition.

Rossiter, Margaret. Women in the Resistance. New York: Praeger, 1991.

The stories include that of OSS officer Virginia Hall.

Warren, Harris G. Special Operations: AAF Aid to European Resistance Movements, 1943-1945. Washington, DC: Air Force Historical Office, HQ Army Air Force, 1947. Washington, DC: Military Affairs, 1947. [pb]

Knouse,, comments that this work is "[h]eavy on supply of the Partisans in the Mediterranean Theater and [has] a good deal of information relating to the 406th Night Leaflet Squadron, which operated out of Cheddington and on Detached Service at Harrington."

Return to OSS Table of Contents