An American Spymaster and the
German Resistance in WWII
Review by Brenda Repland
This is the grippingly true history of Allen Dulles who, in November 1942, managed to get into (WWII neutral) Switzerland before the Nazis sealed the borders. The American spymaster’s mission was to report on the inner workings of the Third Reich. Code-named Agent 110 by the OSS (precursor to the CIA), he discovered a network of Germans – industrialists, students, diplomats, and generals – conspiring to overthrow Hitler.
He was disinclined at first to take on the position as he knew that the Gestapo had uncovered anti-Nazi rings and earlier attempts against Hitler had failed. Furthermore, Washington was resistant to promising the German underground what they wanted most – assurance that Germany would be well-treated after the war.
However, he set up his home in Bern, Switzerland as a center from which he managed important networks of secret agents and resistance leaders. Through them, he oversaw numerous operations to topple the Nazi leadership.
Toward the end of the war, he became aware of the political agenda of US ally, the Soviet Union. It became apparent that it was most determined to add territory to the Communist cause.
In 1950, Eisenhower appointed him Director of the newly created CIA. In that role, he played a major part in US foreign policy.
This is a fascinating piece of history that reads like a spy novel . . . but it’s true!