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Book Review - Voices of the Codebreakers - Personal accounts of the secret heroes of WW II

By: Michael Paterson (411.7/35705)
Publisher: D & C ISBN: 978-0-71532280-2

Thirty years after the end of World War II, a relaxation of British Government security strictures brought to light one of its most important secrets. It was revealed, to understandable astonishment, that the war had been won not just by military genius or the dogged courage of the Allied Armed Forces - though both had been of undeniably vast significance -but by groups of unknown men and women who were hidden away trying to decipher the enemy's coded messages.

These operatives found out in advance what the enemy intended to do, and passed this knowledge on to those who commanded the armies, the fleets and the bomber formations, as well as to the other secret agents throughout the world who were desperately trying to infiltrate enemy lines. Vital information that turned the tide of battle in the North African desert and the Pacific Ocean proved to have been obtained by the time-consuming and unglamorous work of cryptanalysts who deciphered the enemy's coded messages, and coded those for the Allies.

From the stuffy huts of Bletchley Park to the battles in the Mediterranean, the French and Dutch resistance movements and the unkempt radio operatives in Burma, the rarely-seen, outstanding stories collected here reveal the true extent of the 'secret war'.

The ongoing need for secrecy for decades after the war, meant that the outstanding achievements of wartime cryptanalysts could not be properly recognized. Voiced of the Code Breakers reveals and celebrates the extraordinary accomplishments of these ordinary men and women.

October 2007

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