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The Cicero Spy Affair: German Access to British Secrets in World War II (Perspectives on Intelligence History) Hardcover – 30 Sep 1999
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"Wires is superb, with research as definitive as a field riddled with intentionally misleading sources will permit, with analysis that asks all of the right and important questions, and with lively, cool prose that retains the drama inherent in the story without a hint of exaggeration. This book, which appears in David Kahn's series, Perspectives on Intelligence History, is a model for the field...Time and again Wires presents the evidence, weighs it with care, and gives us his own considered conclusions. Wires no doubt is helped in his balancing act by having degreed in European history and in law, and having served in southern Germany in the Counter-Intelligence Corps, as well as having lived in London, but his best ally is a sturdy commonsense. The result is an astute, sensible, very readable book that is unlikely ever to be overtaken by the work of others...a fine book: were that there were more like it in this crowded and often murky field."-Albion
..."this account of the Cicero spy affair is a very good read by all standards."-The Historian
"Professor Wires is as critical of the intrigues inside the Nazi intelligence machine as he is of the faulty security inside the British Embassy; and he disposes of several popular legends."-Times Literary Supplement
"[T]his book is far more than just an overview-reaching some conclusions previously unreached....The Cicero Spy Affair is scholarly research presented in exciting and concise fashion. You won't be able to read it without learning something. Or learning a lot. You'll find it hard to put down."-The Star Press
"A thrilling plunge into the world of the legendary WWII spy code-name "Cicero," a shadowy figure whose mysteries have challenged the best efforts of expert intelligence officers, historians, and journalists....A great true spy adventure full of dramatic suspense. Wires has done exhaustive research in discovering what is known today, despite the web of lies and false clues of a master spy operating in the guise of a faithful servant."-Kirkus Reviews
"Wartime spying is one of the most intriguing areas in the Historiography of World War II, and Wires has given us the best account yet of the remarkable espionage career of Elyesa Bazna, a valet who in 1943-44 microfilmed dozens of top-secret papers belonging to the unsuspecting British Ambassador to Turkey....This is a great tale, all the more so because it is true. Recommended for general collections and those strong in World War II studies."-Library Journal
"This is a briliantly researched and reconstructed piece of history. Both the text itself and the notes let us into details and side issues, such as the example of Moyzisch's assistant secretary who turned out to be a spy for the Americans. There is a detailed analysis of the complex Turkish situation. The dramatis personae are well characterized as to personality and motivation. The shadow war of intelligence in World War II is crowded with spies on all sides and there is a rich literature published especially in England about the subject. This book deserves a place of honour among them. It clarifies for the first time the story of the so-called "spy of the century," "the highest paid spy," the man codenamed, unknown to him at the time, Cicero."-International Social Science Review
"ÝT¨his book is far more than just an overview-reaching some conclusions previously unreached....The Cicero Spy Affair is scholarly research presented in exciting and concise fashion. You won't be able to read it without learning something. Or learning a lot. You'll find it hard to put down."-The Star Press
?...this account of the Cicero spy affair is a very good read by all standards.?-The Historian
?Professor Wires is as critical of the intrigues inside the Nazi intelligence machine as he is of the faulty security inside the British Embassy; and he disposes of several popular legends.?-Times Literary Supplement
About the Author
RICHARD WIRES is Professor Emeritus of History at Ball State University, where he chaired the department and later became Executive Director of the University's London Centre./e He holds degrees in European History and law, and he served with the Counter-Intelligence Corps in southern Germany. His recent research interests include early espionage fiction as well as actual intelligence operations.
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Amazon.com: 6 reviews
One person found this helpful.
Excellent Research and Excellent Writing
on 28 January 2013 - Published on Amazon.com
The strength and value of this book, factually, is the research. I value research which puts to rest false data which has become entrenched as fact. This book does exactly that. So, anyone who appreciates good research, or if you will, good investigation into history will surely value this book as I do. Where the author claims Cicero, or Elyesa Bazna, was the greatest spy of WWII is the one time the author veers from facts of research and strays into opinion. I mention this point for the purpose of pointing out that despite having marshalled impressive facts, the weakest area of reserach and investigation is the deriving of the proper conclusion from the facts. There are, of course, other places where the author offers conjectures and conclusions which are opinion at best. These places are obvious and the reader can either accept or reject them, but the reader will know that the author is trying to give his narrative continuity and thus not buy into them without reservation. Overall, this is a book worth reading if one has an interest in the espionage capers of WWII supported by excellent research and writing.
The Significance of Turkey in World War II
on 19 April 2014 - Published on Amazon.com
This well researched book reveals the pivotal role played by diplomats of Britain and Germany, and to a lessor degree the US, in Turkey during World War II. Anyone interested in reading a real spy story would enjoy this book. But for chance, WWII could have had a very different ending.
on 12 August 2015 - Published on Amazon.com
4 people found this helpful.
the cicero spy affair
on 6 September 2012 - Published on Amazon.com
I was interested more in the actual actions that concentrated on Cicero. This book is more of a history lesson on German polotics in WWII
4 people found this helpful.
Cicero or Maxwell Smart?
on 8 March 2007 - Published on Amazon.com
Richar Wires does himself most admirably here,in placing 'Cicero' in a wider focus, enlarging one's knowledge of WWII espionage significantly.As much as I enjoyed "The Cicero Affair" and "Five Fingers," to be without the depth and understanding of the principals in this spy episode is like viewing the Mona Lisa only on TV. The overall effect is to add brilliant color to a prized black-and-white photo. Not only are you left with a deeper understanding of wartime espionage but a respectful regard for the diplomatic corps at that period. Who could believe that an amateur servant, with the right impulse, and appropriate acting bravadoes, could upset several continents, and get his just desserts? Or did he? This was an engrossing read, a combination treasure-hunt for clues weighed against fact that is hard to put down. 50 years later the WWII victor, USA, chooses to believe the documents presented before Congress by its internal security watchdogs. Go figure.