Quoiqu'il en soit voici l'analyse
CIA HISTORICAL REVIEW PROGRAM
RELEASE IN FULL
22 SEPT 93
A fresh look at an oft-told story.
THE ROTE DREI: GETTING BEHIND
THE "LUCY" MYTH
Mark A. Tittenhofer
The reasons for re-examining the 25 years old matter of the Rote Drei and Rudolph Roessler—the "Lucy" of the Soviet espionage operation in Switzerland during World War 11—are not simple.* To be sure, Studies reviewers have pointed out that much of the public literature on the subject is unreliable. Concern for historical rectitude alone, however, would not justify the expenditure of our time and effort. The profession of intelligence may owe some duty to Clio, but it cannot be said to be the general one of cleansing all confusions and deliberate disinformation from the public record about intelligence matters.
Apart from the possible substantive benefits of clearing up the story of the Red Three and its members, however, there are certain concrete circumstances surrounding it that ought to attract our notice. The first is that it continues to be treated as a matter of some contemporary concern in certain interesting quarters. The second is that the Soviets evidently think it is important. With regard to the first point, it is perhaps sufficient to recall that the 20th of July movement against Hitler—from which much of the Rote Drei's best information emanated—remains the object of deeply divided public feelings in both Germanies to this day. Moreover, for different reasons the Rote Drei is, as we shall see, regarded with considerable sensitivity elsewhere on the Continent, particularly in Switzerland.
Yet it is Moscow's attitude that is most striking. Readers of Studies in Intelligence will recall Louis Thomas' recent essay on the career of the Hungarian collector of cartographic intelligence, Alexander Rado,1 in which we were reminded that Rado was resident director of the Soviet apparatus in Switzerland while the Rote Drei was operating. Rado has publicly indicated the intention to publish a personal memoir that will lay to rest the "stab in the back" theory of the Nazi debacle. Thomas correctly infers that this curious announcement must have had some direct relationship to thinking in Moscow. We are therefore surely right to believe that we are to hear more about the Rote Drei, and that we would be wise to equip ourselves in advance with the appropriate intellectual baggage. Whatever Rado places on the record is likely to be elaborately confusing.
The Radio Messages Examined
Any useful, accurate account of the Rote Drei must start with the radio traffic exchanged between the Center in Moscow and the network in Switzerland. The first question is quantitative: how many messages did the traffic contain?2 Wilhelm F. Flicke, a German cryptanalyst who worked on the traffic during the war, estimated the total at some 5,500, about five a day for three years. This estimate is not unreasonable. When Edmond and Olga Hamel, two of the Rote Drei operators, were arrested by the Swiss police on 9 October 1943, a total of 129 messages was found in their flat. A comparison of these with those in other holdings has shown that 40 appear elsewhere and 89 are unique. The 40 matching messages were all transmitted between 3 September and 5 October 1943. If it is assumed that the remaining 89 were also sent to Moscow during the same period, as seems probable, then it can also be surmised that 129 is the average number of transmissions per month. There have been a number of claims that the Red Three network was functioning before the war, and that Lucy, as Rudolf Roessler was called, gave Moscow advance warning of Hitler's attack. The traffic proves, however, that Sissy (Rachel Duebendorfer) did not establish a clandestine association with Taylor (Christian Schneider) and Lucy until the late summer of 1942. Our best estimate of the life-span of the Rote Drei operation—that is, the period during which the Swiss net exchanged W/T communications with Moscow—is 33 months, from August 1941 to May 1944. If 129 was a typical month's total, the sum of all messages sent was about 4,250.3 For the reasons given in the footnote below, 5,000 seems an acceptable estimate of the total volume.
From various sources we have pulled together 437 messages that appear authentic.4 This collection, unfortunately, contains only 8 per cent of the presumed total. For this reason we are obliged to be circumspect when drawing from the traffic any quantitative conclusions. What is more important, the riddles resolved by the 8 per cent are cause to believe that the remaining mysteries, or most of them, could be solved with the aid of the missing 92 per cent.
This account of the Rote Drei is drawn chiefly from the radio messages. Supplementary research in classified files has yielded additional information. Although there are still gaps in our knowledge, we can at least present the first account of the Red Three that is not based chiefly on speculation, fantasy, and falsification.
Our collection of messages contains references to 55 sources. Most of them, of course, are listed only by a cover name. Of these 55 we can identify 15 with certainty and make educated guesses about 16 more. The remaining 24 appear rarely and inconspicuously. We also know the identities of some persons associated with the Rote Drei who do not appear in the traffic.
Digging out the facts and telling the story would have been decidedly easier if so much misinformation about the subject had not been published in the past. Even the name "The Red Three," a German appellation based on the number of transmitters or operators serving the network, is misleading, because at times there were four and even five.
Vera and the Beginnings of the Red Three
The story of the Rote Drei begins with Maria Josefovna Poliakova, a highly intelligent Russian Jewess and a dedicated Communist, born about 1910. When she was 21, she was a very active member of the central committee of the Komsomol. She was recruited at that time by the IVth Department of the Soviet General Staff. Her aliases were Mildred, Gisela, and Vera. She was fluent in German, French, and English. Her brother, father, and husband were all executed in Communist purges; yet her devotion to the cause was unshaken.
In 1936-1937 she headed the Soviet military intelligence network in Switzerland. She made a quick trip back in 1941, when she ordered certain changes in the command structure of the Rote Drei. But mostly she spend the war years in Moscow, where she specialized on the Rote Drei operation. (She was not the "Director," however. All of the messages from Moscow to Switzerland were signed "Director," an indicator showing that they came from the Center. It is probable that Poliakova was the originator of many of these; her informal, fervent, Marxian style is distinctive. But this tone is often replaced by that of superiors who are much more authoritative and brusque.) At the end of 1944, when the Swiss operation had ended, Poliakova, then a major, became chief of the GRU's Spanish section. Foote suggests that she was purged less than two years later. "The Director and Vera were removed from their posts and replaced in about May 1946. I never saw them again, nor were they ever mentioned. The Centre has only one penalty for failure."5
Foote also recounts that in Switzerland he was first directed by a lady whom he calls "Sonia." Her true name was Ursula Maria Hamburger, née Kuczynski. She was born on 15 May 1907 in Berlin, one of four sisters.6 She also had a brother, Professor Juergin Kuczynski, who introduced Klaus Fuchs to Soviet intelligence officers. Ursula and Rudolf Hamburger were Red Army espionage agents in Shanghai in 1930-1935. She went to Switzerland in the latter 1930's, travelling alone because her husband had been ordered to stay in China. In 1939 her position was jeopardized by the arrest of Franz Obermanns, a German Communist with false Finnish documents and a transmitter. On 23 February 1940 she married Leon Charles Beurton, an Englishman whom Foote called "Bill Philips." Beurton, a veteran of the Spanish Civil War, was recruited for Soviet espionage by Brigette Lewis, who turned him over to her sister Ursula on 13 February 1939. Ursula Hamburger trained both Beurton and Foote in W/T. The marriage to Beurton gave Ursula British citizenship, and she left Switzerland for England in December 1940. Her husband remained in Switzerland, where he trained Edmond Hamel in operating a W/T set. In July 1942, provided with a British passport in the name of Miller and the blessings of the Red Army Staff, Beurton went via Portugal to England and his Ursula. In 1947 the Beurtons left England hurriedly for East Berlin.
Sissy and Paul
A third person of importance in the swaddling days of the Red Three was also a woman, Rachel Duebendorfer. Born on 18 July 1901 in Danzig, she became an active Soviet agent in 1920. Soon thereafter she married one Curt Caspari, and on 8 July 1922 she gave birth to a daughter, Tamara, who eventually married a Frenchman and who helped her mother with the housework, as did her husband, by serving as a Rote Drei courier. In the late 1930's Rachel contracted a marriage of convenience with a Swiss citizen named Duebendorfer.7 She took up residence in Bern, where she lived as the common-law wife of a German Communist named Paul Boettcher, alias Paul, alias Hans Saalbach. Boettcher was born on 2 May 1891 in Leipzig. Before fleeing Germany he had been a member of the Central Committee of the Communist Party, Minister of Finance in Leipzig, and editor-in-chief of the Arbeiterzeitung in Leipzig. Escaping to Switzerland from Germany after the Nazis came to power, he was twice expelled from Swiss territory, in 1941 and 1944, but managed to survive. Sissy not only took him into her flat but also gave him the papers of her Swiss husband, whose identity Boettcher assumed. Boettcher, Duebendorfer, Tamara Vigier (née Caspari), Roessler, and Christian Schneider were all arrested in May 1944.8 Neither Sissy nor Paul was present in the courtroom on 22-23 October, 1945, when a Swiss military court sentenced each to two years. Both had escaped to France in July of that year. Boettcher went back to Saxony and in 1947 became editor of the Leipziger Volkszeitung. For a time he was a professor of Russian in Halle. By 1958 he was again an editor in Leipzig. Sissy's fate is not known to us.
In our collection of W/T messages Sissy appears 28 times between 8 October 1942 and 28 November 1943. These are the highlights:
8 October 1942, Director to Dora (Alexander Rado) for Sissy:
"You must learn a code and receive additional instruction. ... Your new people Marius and Taylor are not bad workers, but one must always control them and keep them busy."
Two characteristics of this message are interesting. The first is that Sissy is the only one of Rado's sources to whom the Center directed messages by name and through Rado. Later, as is noted below, Moscow even eliminated Rado, the resident director, from the communications channel for certain messages, which were sent to Sissy in her own code. The second important element in this message is its reference to Taylor (Christian Schneider) as a new source. As we shall see, Taylor was first recruited by Sissy in the summer of 1942. Because Lucy reported only through Taylor, this fact means that Moscow received no messages from Lucy and his sub-sources until that time. (Foote claimed that Lucy's material began going to the Center in early 1941 and that he warned the Russians of Hitler's impending attack some two weeks in advance. Others, including Accoce and Quet,9 have copied the claim. But the traffic proves it false.)
20 November 1942. The Director instructed Dora to have Sissy determine and report the identities of the sources in the Lucy-Taylor group.
12 January 1943. Before this date Sissy had sent her first message in her own code, because the Center answered, "We greet your first telegram. Try to work attentively and to be careful when working. Destroy immediately all notes and working papers."
The ordinary traffic continued to be channeled through Rado. But on 23 April 1943 Moscow sent its second message in Sissy's code, this one addressed to her and to Paul.10 It read as follows:
"1. Dear friends, since the summer of 1942 you have worked with the Taylor-Lucy group, which has provided us with a great deal of varied material, some of it valuable. But despite the long cooperation this group remains wholly unclarified for us. ...
"2. Determine and inform us by radio: exact reports on Taylor, Lucy, Werther, Anna, Olga. Especially important is a personality sketch of Lucy. Who is he, what is his name, what were his circumstances earlier and what are they now, for what motives does he work for others and for us? ...
"3. Answer this telegram in your own code. You do not need to inform Albert of our telegram or of your answer. He has received directions, as well as telegrams coming directly from Sissy, without sending queries back [i.e., to Moscow]. ...
"4. To Sissy only. We send you the title of a new book for your code; buy it; we shall give you instructions about how to work according to the book. Albert is not to know about the new book. It is called `Tempete sur la Maison'. ...
"5. How are you? What is Mara doing? Greetings to her and both of you from Gisela. "
Although Sissy and Paul had their own code, it appears that they did not have their own radio operator at this time and had to go through Rado; hence Moscow's assurances that Rado was not being curious or testy but rather was accepting this traffic, in a code that he could not read, without demur. Gisela was one of three code names for Maria Josefovna Poliakova, the other two being Vera and Mildred. Mara was Sissy's daughter, Tamara Vigier.11
18 May 1943, Dora to Director:
"Sissy has just reported that Maurice has been arrested by German authorities. She fears that the Gestapo will thus come across her trail. Maurice knows Sissy's true name. I have initiated discrete inquiries and shall report further."
24 May 1943, Director to Dora:
"Sissy is to let us know immediately: how did she learn of Maurice's arrest and to what extent can his arrest be dangerous for her?
4 July 1943, Director to Dora:
"We have been able to determine, just in the past few days, that the courier from France, who was supposed to pick up the money from Jim, was arrested; and in his place a Gestapo agent came to Jim and, it appears, followed him to his apartment and in this way was able to learn his name. At the same time but independently in this event, Maurice was arrested in France. ... For the time being, you must break off your connection with Sissy completely. ... She can be persuaded that it is in Taylor's interest to have a connection with someone else for a while. ... Try to convince Sissy. Tell that it will be for only three months. ... Sissy could say it is because of Paul, who is under observation. ... She should keep her apartment absolutely clean and, above all else, not say a word too much. ... It is best that Paul not sleep in the apartment."
It has been suggested that "Maurice" was Maurice Emile Aenis-Haenslin, born 20 September 1893 in St. Denis, France. Aenis-Haenslin, a Swiss citizen and an engineer, was a member of the Central Committee of the Swiss Communist Party and later joined the French CP. He was involved in courier and funding activity on behalf of Soviet intelligence during World War II. There are conflicting reports about the date of Maurice's arrest by the Germans, one account dating it 1943, another 1942. The latter is both more detailed and less derivative. It is therefore concluded that the Maurice who knew Sissy and whom the Germans arrested in France may have been someone other than Aenis-Haenslin, who was released from a German concentration camp in Brandenburg in response to a Swiss demand.
At any rate, the traffic continued to mention Maurice and to reveal conflicting views about his arrest. On 8 July 1943 Poliakova repeated to Sissy, in the latter's code, some of the instructions radioed to Dora four days earlier.12 She directed Sissy to leave Bern and go to Tessin (Ticino) or a spa for two or three months. Taylor and Lucy were to be turned over to someone else.
Sissy's Fight with Moscow
Sissy's reaction was unambiguous. On 8 July 1943 Dora sent Director the following:
"Sissy and her man do not believe that the story has anything to do with Maurice and the Gestapo. They believe that the man who asked about them came from the Center and just handled himself clumsily. They assume that the Center wants in this way to take away the Taylor group, and in such a manner that 1 too shall know nothing about it."
Presumably there were further exchanges, with Moscow insisting that Sissy identify Lucy and his sources and that she turn them over to Dora or someone else and with Sissy adamantly refusing, but these are not in our collection. On 16 August 1943, however, the Center sent Sissy, via Dora, a stern message which substituted the formal second person for the intimate and which appears to have been drawn up not by Poliakova but by her superiors:
"We, the Center, which has its people everywhere and can determine what is happening in other countries and around you, have told you clearly and explicitly that we have hard evidence that the Gestapo knows that you work for us and will try to uncover your connections into Germany. You, however, deny this possibility and interpret it as an attempt to take the Taylor group away from you. You must understand, inasmuch as you assume this position, that you know nothing of the danger which threatens you and Taylor's people, especially those in Germany. Your behavior is frivolous and irresponsible. We demand that you recognize the seriousness of the situation and place full confidence in our statements. We repeat: the Gestapo knows that you have or had a connection with us and will attempt all possible provocations. ..."
But Sissy stayed tough. On 22 September 1943 Dora radioed to Director,
"In answer to your No. 157 and No. 158. Many thanks for your advice. I am myself convinced that much more could be gotten out of the Lucy group. However, I have no direct contact with this group, as you know, and every time that I try to intensify the group's activity I encounter in Sissy and her man13 a resistance that I do not understand. I remind you that when I noted the possibilities of this group a year ago, I had to hold with Sissy discussions that continued for months before she was prepared to take it over and use it. ... Sissy and her man ... say that they cannot transmit criticisms to Taylor and Lucy because both would consider it an insult and would stop working. In accordance with your advice, I wrote Lucy a very friendly letter, but Sissy declared that Taylor could not pass it on because Lucy, beyond doubt, is already doing everything that he can. Apparently Sissy and her man view the letter as an attempt by the Center or by me to set up a direct contact with the Lucy group. ... Your telegram was handed over to Paul. ... Again he boasted in such a way that I had a hard time of it controlling myself. lie refuses to come to Geneva for meetings. ... Again I beg you to release me from further contact with Paul. ... [who] tried to establish contact for the transmission of his material through Pierre and Ignatz. ..."
In other words, Sissy and Paul still had no radio operator of their own but did not want to turn over their encoded messages to Dora for transmission by Edward (Edmond Hamel) and Maud (Edmond's wife. Olga), by Rosa (Margarete Bolli), or by Jim (Alexander Foote). One report identifies Pierre as Roger Vauthey of Lausanne, supposedly a courier or cut-out between Rado and "Mario" in France. Foote, however, in a private interview held in 1953, said that Pierre and Vita were Pierre Nicole and his wife. Our own view is that Pierre was indeed Pierre Nicole but that Vita was Tamara Vigier. Pierre Nicole, born in 1911, served as a cut-out between the Rote Drei and the Swiss Labor Party, which was extremely left-wing though not officially Communist. The head of this party was Pierre's father, Leon, born in 1897 in Montcherend, Vaud. Leon Nicole had recruited several members of the Rote Drei on behalf of the GRU. He and Pierre were in touch with Dora, Sissy, and Jim. The identity of Ignatz is not known. He could have been Leon Nicole or any one of several other Swiss Communists.
By 5 November 1943 the danger signs had multiplied, and Moscow feared that Rado might be arrested, leaving the Center cut off from Lucy's information. It therefore repeated the proposal that Sissy and Jim be placed in direct contact, so that if anything happened to Dora, Jim could still maintain the flow of intelligence. On 10 November Dora replied that Jim was in serious danger. The reason, although the cited message does not say so, was that Edmond and Olga Hamel had been arrested by the Swiss police on or about 8 October 1943, as had another W/T operator, Margarete Bolli.14
On 28 November 1943 the Director instructed Dora to tell Sissy and Pakbo to work independently for a time. The most important information was to go through Jim. What Moscow obviously did not know was that Jim had been arrested eight days earlier.
The fourth key personality in the Red Three was Alexander Rado, the Hungarian cartographer who took over the direction of the net from Maria Poliakova and who assumed contact with Ursula Hamburger's sources after she left Switzerland for England at the end of 1940. Rado's story is well-known and is retold here only in the barest outline. He was born 1 September 1899 in Upjest, Hungary. It is almost certain that he was already working for Soviet military intelligence when he left Paris for Geneva in 1936. Rado and Ursula Hamburger worked independently of each other until the fall of France in June 1940 because Rado had been able until then to send his reports to Moscow via microfilm carried by couriers to Paris. When the Germans occupied France, Moscow ordered Hamburger to make contact with Rado and place the transmitter of her new husband, Leon Charles Beurton, at Rado's disposal. Hamburger had trained both Foote and Beurton in operating a transmitter, and they in turn trained the Hamels and Margarete Bolli. In 1941 Moscow resolved a struggle for power by subordinating Duebendorfer to Rado. (One report has Poliakova going to Switzerland for the purpose.) But Rado's authority was not absolute, and the fact that the Center gave Duebendorfer a code of her own and sometimes by-passed Rado when communicating with Sissy shows that the Soviets did not intend to let Rado consolidatc his position completely.
Dora, a simple anagram for Rado, is the sender or recipient of almost all the Rote Drei messages. The only exceptions are those sent or received directly by Sissy and those sent by Albert or by the Center but mentioning Albert in the text. There is no doubt that Albert, like Dora, is Rado; but efforts to find a pattern or significance in Rado's choice of cover name for a particular message have not been successful. Albert, like Dora, sends standard OB messages. The shift in names does not indicate a parallel shift in transmitters, because both "Dora" and "Albert" messages were found at their flat when the Hamels were arrested. The possibility that "Dora" is Rado as chief of the Rote Drei and "Albert" is Rado as an individual disintegrates when checked against the traffic. Flicke postulated a secretary who as Albert signed messages for Rado when be was away; but no one else ever heard of such a secretary, and Dora and Albert messages were sometimes transmitted on the same day. So the mystery is unsolved.
All concerned should be aware that Foote—who disliked Rado—minimized his role in the Rote Drei, attacked his personal integrity on dubious grounds, and erroneously believed him executed in the USSR, whereas in fact Rado is flourishing as a cartographer in Hungary and Foote is dead.
By the beginning of 1941, then, Ursula Beurton, née Hamburger, was in England; the desk chief for the operation, Poliakova, was in Moscow; Rado was in Geneva as the chief Red Three member in Switzerland; and Sissy and her friend Paul were in Bem (not Geneva, where Foote15 erroneously places them).
Dora had two other key sources who, like Sissy, provided him with intelligence from sub-sources. But Sissy was more important than either o€ them, for one reason only: Lucy anc? his sub-sources.
The cut-out between Lucy and Sissy was Taylor, whose true name was Christian Schneider.
Lucy and Taylor
The Center thought highly of Taylor, chiefly because Moscow misunderstood his role. The first reference to him in our holdings is in a message sent by the Director to Dora on 8 October 1942. The message terms him a new source, although in fact he was merely a go-between. On 20 October 1942 the Director told Dora to identify Taylor's sources, not knowing that the sources "belonged" to Lucy, not Taylor. Another Moscow to Dora message, sent the same day, refers to "Taylor's information" about OKW (German High Command) plans. A week later Moscow again asked for the identities of Taylor's sources. In December 1942 and January 1943 the Center began to speak of Taylor and Lucy jointly. By February 1943 the Center's follow-up questions were directed to Lucy, with scant mention of Taylor. That the Soviets continued to overestimate Taylor's importance is nevertheless evident in a Director-to-Dora message of 6 October 1943 which suggested that the work of the Lucy-Taylor group might be continued after the war ended and which promised Taylor an income for life if he agreed. Perhaps Sissy misrepresented to Moscow the insignificant role that Taylor actually had, perhaps she merely kept stubbornly silent about such facts, or perhaps she misunderstood the true situation because she was in touch only with Taylor and not with Lucy.
In only one sense was Lucy important. If Rudolf Roessler had not been living in Switzerland during the second world war, his sources in Germany might have found it troublesome or even impossible to get their reports into Soviet hands. In fact, they might not have cared much one way or the other about Soviet reception of their material, as long as it went to the Western allies. But as was pointed out in the recent review of Accoce and Quet,16 the widely accepted story that Lucy was a master spy is nothing but a myth. As we have seen, the Center tried to eliminate Sissy and put Dora in direct contact with Taylor and Lucy. If this maneuver had succeeded, it is probable that Dora would have been instructed to pressure Lucy to divulge his sources, whose identities Moscow had already requested again and again. And if Lucy had yielded, then the truth would have been apparent: Lucy's true function was no different from that of Taylor. Both were mere cut-outs. What made Lucy and Taylor important and what made Sissy important was a small band of Germans, Lucy's sources.
Lucy's Sources in World War II
The record clearly shows that Lucy had four important sources:17 Werther, Teddy, Olga, and Anna. Of the 332 messages from Dora to Director of which there are copies in our holdings, Werther is the source of 69 (21 percent), Teddy of 31 (10 percent), Olga of 26 (8 percent), and Anna of 11 (3 1/2 percent). These four were probably not the only sources reporting to Lucy; Lucy was not the only source reporting to Sissy; and Sissy was not the only principal agent funneling reports from a network to Rado. Yet these four persons produced 421/2 percent of the total traffic from Switzerland to Moscow.18
We do not know the identities of any of them. We can, however, dismiss the theory of Foote and some later writers that these cover names merely referred to the source's access rather than his identity, so that Werther stood for Wehrmacht, Olga for Oberkommando der Luftwaffe, Anna for the Auswertige Amt (Foreign Office), etc. There is nothing in the traffic to support this theory, which seems to be based on speculation only. All Rote Drei code names for which true identities have been established were designators of individuals per se, not of types of cover or access.
Despite the printed assertions to the contrary, Rudolf Roessler did divulge the identity of his sources, or at least of some of them. Three and a half years before his death he provided identifying information about four of his chief sources to a trusted friend. They were, said Lucy, (1) a German major (whom he did not name) who had been the chief of the Abwehr before Admiral Wilhelm Canaris assumed command; (2) Hans Bernd Gisevius; (3) Carl Goerdeler; and (4) "General Boelitz, deceased."
General Hans Oster
Lucy's confidant garbled the first identification and may have done the same with the fourth. Canaris took charge of the Abwehr on 1 January 1935. His predecessor was not a major but another admiral, Conrad Patzig. But Hans Oster was a major in the Abwehr at that time, and he remained in the service, in which he served as the chief of staff and also as the heart of the 20th of July group which conspired to overthrow and assassinate Hitler.
Hans Bernd Gisevius19 said that he first met Oster sometime between August 1933 and April 1934. "At that time he was ... setting up the war ministry's counter-intelligence organization ... known ... as the Abwehr."
A number of commentators have noted how well-informed Oster was. His knowledge of state secrets extended even to those held by the bitterest enemies of the Abwehr, the Gestapo and the Nazi security service, called the SD (for Sicherheitsdienst).
"Oster was able, generally speaking through his contacts with Graf [Wolf Heinrich von] Helldorf, the Berlin Prefect of Police, and with [Arthur] Nebe, the Reichskriminaldirektor ... to learn quickly what was going on in the entourage of Hitler and Goering and also in the Gestapo headquarters in the Prinz-Albrecht-Strasse."20
The fact that Oster was prepared to provide Germany's enemies with information which was of crucial importance, even though they lacked the power to make full use of it, is also well-established. Even Accoce and Quet,21 despite their denigration of the 20th of July group, concede that Oster told Colonel J. G. Sas, the Dutch military attaché in Berlin, that Germany intended to invade Norway. Abshagen 22 reported that Oster gave Sas this warning on 3 April 1940 for relay to Norway and also told Sas of the invasion of Holland before the event. In fact, Oster had begun to send specific, factual warnings to the West as early as 1938.
The man who had become a major in 1929, a lieutenant colonel in 1935, a colonel in 1939, and a major general in 1942 was unswerving in his detestation of German fascism and in his conviction that morality necessitated action. As time passed and Hitler's power grew, Oster became convinced that the plots to eradicate the Nazis through the internal intervention of German armed forces would fail because of the waverings of the German generals. He warned the West because he recognized that Hitler could not be brought down inside the Reich until he had been defeated on the battlefields.
Most contemporary German historians boggle at this point. They write in detail about the 20th of July conspiracy but gloss over the fact that from 1938 until his discharge from the Abwehr on 31 March 1944,23 when he was placed under house arrest in Schnaditz, near Leipzig, Oster was furnishing vital information to Germany's foes and was therefore—at least in Nazi eyes—engaged in high treason.
How did Oster obtain information? Gisevius24 said, "Oster ... had formed a circle around himself ... he utilized the potentialities of the Albwehr so cannily that he was able to establish a whole network of confidential agents. ... Oster seemed to be organizing an intelligence service of his own, within the counter-intelligence service. ... One of the most important of his activities was to install his own confidential agents in the most diverse positions." And Oster was on intimate conspiratorial terms with such persons as General Ludwig Beck (who, with Oster, sent Dr. Josef Mueller to the Vatican for peace negotiations with the British, negotiations at which the Pope presided); General Georg Thomas, head of the Economics and Armaments Branch of the OKW; Generals Fritz Thiele and Erich Fellgiebel, respectively chiefs of communications for the Army and the OKW; and General Friedrich Olbricht, chief of the Allgemeine Heeresamt and permanent deputy to the commander-in-chief of the Home Army. These men, and others like them, were active members of the conspiracy; most of them were executed by the Nazis. And they were in a position to have direct access to precisely the kind of information reported by Lucy's sources.
How did the information reach Lucy? Here too we can only speculate. A biographic summary of Oster in the International Biographic Archives25 includes the following: "In addition to his military duties Oster was simultaneously the technical center of the anti-Hitler resistance in the Army. He spared neither effort nor risk to set up connections between military and civilian resistance groups."
Gisevius26 adds, "He once described to me in one sentence his own conception of his function within the Resistance movement. He was standing at his desk looking down pensively at the four or five telephones whose secret circuits connected him with the most diverse authorities. 'This is what I am,' he said. 'I facilitate communications for everyone everywhere.' "
Oster had the entire communications network of the Abwehr at his disposal, and he used it to support the anti-Nazi cause. Abshagen27 comments, "The so-called 'A-net' (consisting of independent lines of communication at the disposal of the Abwehr only) would ensure that the `conspirators' only would be able to transmit news and orders." He adds, "The Abwehrorganization was the nerve-centre from which lines led to the General Staff, to General [Erwin] von Witzleben ... to Schacht, to Goerdeler, to Beck ... to [Baron Ernst von] Weizsaecker [then Under-Secretary of State and formerly Minister in Bern] and through him to a group of diplomats abroad. ..."28
As was noted earlier in this study, the timing of Rote Drei messages would have permitted sending almost all of the traffic through Abwehr courier channels from Germany to Switzerland. We know that Gisevius had access at least twice and sometimes three times a week to a courier pouch from the Foreign Office in Berlin to the German Embassy in Bern. At least every other day Gisevius was also served by an OKW courier as the result of a procedure instituted by Oster. And for urgent messages Oster or a cohort could safely use an Abwehr telephone. How the Abwehr's lines were shielded against Gestapo and SD monitoring is not known, at least by this writer; but that they were so shielded is demonstrated by the conspirators' uninhibited use of telephones and the survival of the group until 20 July 1944.
In brief, even if Lucy had not listed "Canaris' predecessor," Gisevius, and Carl Goerdeler, all key figures in the 20th of July group, as having been among his sources, the characteristics of the Lucy messages and of their transmission from Germany to Switzerland suggest that Werther and the others probably had Abwehr communications channels at their disposal. There seems to be no plausible alternative theory.
Hans Bernd Gisevius
Gisevius has told much of his own story in To the Bitter End, but like other Germans he stresses the resistance activity of the underground and says little about espionage. (There are a few exceptions. Speaking of the 20th of July conspiracy, Gisevius says, "We had our spies everywhere—in the war ministry, the police headquarters, the ministry of the interior, and especially in the foreign office. All the various threads came together in Oster's office."29But comments in this vein are rare.) Gisevius entered the Abwehr in 1939 or 1940; and when Paris fell, Canaris and Oster sent him to Zurich with the cover of a vice-consul.
But even before the war started, Gisevius had started to make trips to Switzerland to meet with representatives of the Western Allies. He says, "We had decided to meet in Switzerland after the 'March Madness.' [The term is a reference to Hitler's seizure, with Western acquiescence, of the Sudetenland in March 1939.] We wanted to establish closer connections with the British and French, and it no longer seemed advisable to do this in Berlin. [Hjalmar] Schacht had business in Basle in any case. I was glad of the opportunity to complete my notes on the French crisis. Goerdeler intended to stay around Berlin until the end of the Czech crisis; then he planned to follow us as soon as possible."30 In Ouchy Gisevius met Goerdeler and an unidentified companion who is mentioned only as a person of considerable influence in London and Paris political circles.
Ex-Chancellor Josef Wirth
Gerhard Ritter31 tells of another, similar meeting which occurred some months later, in February 1940. He says that the ex-Chancellor of Germany, Josef Wirth, had emigrated to Switzerland and had offered to act as an intermediary between the British and the German antiFascists. "In a document which Dr. [Reinhold] Schairer took to London he called Chamberlain's attention to the existence of an important Opposition group. ... In mid-February two Foreign Office representatives, friends of [Sir Robert] Vansittart, met Wirth at Ouchy and another man well-known in London who had, since war broke out, lived in Lucerne and from there had kept up his connections with friends in Britain."
The other man could have been Michel, Freiherr von Godin, or Lucy himself, or any of several other Germans who, like Wirth, were living in Lucerne.
Wirth also appears in Rote Drei traffic. On 14 January 1943 the Center sent the following message to Dora:
"a) Request reply about exact substance of talks between Long32 and Wirth. Especially interested in contents of Wirth's negotiations with the Anglo-Saxons and his intentions regarding negotiations with the USSR. What does he plan to do, as a practical matter, to establish contact?
"b) What opinion does Long now have of Rot's statements? Does he believe that they are true? Long absolutely must report clearly about the intent of Rot's group to orient itself toward the Soviet Union. Is it possible that at the present time there exists an organized opposition of commanding officers against Hitler?
"c) Rot should report the location from which Germany sent 30 divisions to Italy. What is the picture in respect to reserves in Germany? How does the OKW react to the Russian offensive? What are the plans and intentions of the OKW for the next few months?
"d) Repeat, what documents does Rot intend to publish? Because of their great importance, request a good check on all these questions and a prompt answer."
Six days later the Director asked some questions about the intentions of the OKW, the German High Command. Moscow directed that the requirements be levied upon Lucy's group and added, " ... if feasible, Long should try to get relevant information from the Wirth group. "
On 20 April 1943 the following message from Dora was transmitted:
"Through the Director General coming here ... Mayor Goerdeler from ... Bendlerstrasse [OKW Headquarters]
"a) The first fixed day for the German attack on the East Front is 14 June. Only operations of modest proportions are planned.
"b) The General Staff expects the event by the end of April at the earliest; it could snowball. The so-called second echelon of generals [literally, generals in second-best uniforms] who already wanted to take action against Hitler in January, has now decided to liquidate Hitler and also his supporters. An earlier attempt failed because Hitler was warned by Manstein."
On 5 October 1943 the following went from Dora to Director: "On 27 September Salter talked with the former German Chancellor Wirth in Lucerne. Wirth rejects the German Liberation Committee [the reference is to the "National Committee of Free Germany," created by the Russians] in Moscow because it hinders instead of hastening the disintegration of the Nazi regime. Those who feel partially responsible for the establishment of that regime will cooperate more closely with the Nazi leaders. Bourgeois German Democrats are prepared to collaborate with German Communists but not under Soviet guidance. Therefore they reject the Moscow Committee. According to Wirth the German Embassy in Bern is extremely interested m Sokolm.33 Krauel, a former German consul in Geneva, serves as the intermediary in this matter."
On the basis of these messages and of the scanty information about the movements and activities of Gisevius in Switzerland, it is suggested that Gisevius may have been Rot. Gisevius knew Roessler, which may well explain why Lucy identified him correctly as a source but failed to list Oster, whom he had never met, by name. Gisevius also knew Wirth, whose link to the 20th of July group had been sanctioned by Generals Oster and Beck. He obviously knew Carl Goerdeler, one of the most important of the conspirators. Gisevius was sympathetic toward the Soviet cause, a fact which became more apparent after the war than it was during it. He was thoroughly trained in clandestinity as a result of his role in the 20th of July group, his three and a half years as an agent of British intelligence, and his work for OSS in Switzerland. It seems probable that people like Goerdeler and Beck, who themselves favored the Western solution—i.e., a post-war Germany oriented toward the US and the UK—believed that Gisevius felt as they did and that those members of the 20th of July who favored the Eastern solution, people like Count Klaus Philip Schenk von Stauffenberg and Adam von Trott zu Solz, thought that Gisevius shared their views.
There is one difficulty inherent in the theory that Rot was Gisevius. As was said earlier, Lucy named Gisevius as one of his sources. Rot, however, seems to have been a source of Long rather than Lucy.34 But there may be no real contradiction here; Gisevius could have been in clandestine contact with both Roessler and Blun, just as he was in clandestine contact with many other people. Because Lucy and Sissy succeeded in concealing the identities of the Lucy group from the Russians, the dual role of Gisevius in the Rote Drei, if he did in fact play such a role, would not have come to light.
The third man named by Roessler as one of his sources was Carl Goerdeler, who had been Lord Mayor of Leipzig from 1930 to 1936, when he resigned and broke with the Nazis. A conservative visionary, a Protestant monarchist, a headstrong philosopher, Goerdeler remained a civilian all his life. All of the information provided to Moscow by Lucy could have been obtained more readily, more securely, in greater detail, and at a higher level from leading military figures in the resistance than from Carl Goerdeler. It seems probable that Roessler named him just because he knew him personally, as he knew Gisevius. Whatever information Goerdeler provided, he must have obtained it from fellow conspirators, not from direct access. It is therefore not possible to draw any logical inferences about which cover name, if any, referred to Goerdeler.
The Unknown Boelitz
The fourth source named by Lucy was "General Boelitz (deceased)." Unfortunately, no record of a general named Boelitz has been discovered. There was a Dr. Otto Boelitz, born a pastor's son in Wesel in 1876, who became the Prussian Minister of Art, Science, and Education. In 19,34 he was a Kulturrat (advisor on cultural matters) and a member of the German Foreign Institute. He was also the first director of the Ibero-American Institute in Berlin. Sometime during 1934 Dr. Boelitz fell into the bad graces of the Nazis and was replaced as head of the Ibero-American Institute by a general named Faupel. Thereafter, one report suggests, the institute was used by the Nazis in support of espionage and subversion in Latin America. Dr. Otto Boelitz died in Germany on 29 December 1951.
No record linking him to Roessler on the one hand, or to Oster, Goerdeler, or any other member of the 20th of July group on the other, has been found thus far. There remains, however, the possibility of another garble. A Colonel Friedrich (Fritz) Boetzel was head of the Germany military intercept office in Munich before 1933. From 1934 to 1939 he headed the ciphers department (Chiffrierstelle ) of the OKW. Thereafter he was commanding officer of the intelligence evaluation office of the Southeast Army Group, Athens, where he remained until 1944. He had ties to Canaris and Oster. And a German first lieutenant of the signal corps, interrogated in April 1945, described Colonel Boetzel as an anti-Nazi.
To summarize: we have Werther, Teddy, Olga, and Anna as Lucy's principal sources and as the principal sources in the Rote Drei network. We have Oster, Gisevius, Goerdeler, and Boelitz, identified by Roessler as having been among his sources during World War 11. We have no basis for matching true and cover names, although Oster seems the likeliest candidate for Werther.
To continue, the contacts of "Sissy"—Rachel Duebendorfer—fell into three categories. By far the most important group was Luey's quartet of Werther, Teddy, Olga, and Anna, all in Germany. Sissy resisted strenuously every effort of Moscow and Rado to determine the identities of the members of the Taylor-Lucy team, and it is fair to conjecture that a major reason for her resistance was that had she lost this remarkable asset, she'd have had little enough left. For the second group was composed of peripheral people probably turned over to Sissy by Vera Poliakova before the War. And the third element was made up of Sissy's own family; the man with whom she was living, Paul Goettcher; her daughter and the daughter's husband; and a cousin.
Long and Pakbo
Alexander Rado had two other principal agents. One of them, Georges Blun, code-named Long, was a French journalist whose subsources could not match the production of Lucy's group in quality or quantity, but who was nevertheless a valuable asset for the Soviets. The other was Otto Puenter, or Pakbo.
The sources who had aliases and who are known to have been members of Long's group were Agnes, Kurz, Grau, Rot, Fanny, and possibly Feld. With the exception of the last-named, a courier, the members of the group have a certain homogeneous quality. They were not military professionals like Werther, Teddy, and the rest. Three of them, including Long, were professional journalists. Most of them worked for two or more intelligence services. Their political views and their motivation often seem ambiguous and devious, if not opportunistic.
The first of Long's sub-sources, Agnes, was a journalist named Ernst Lemmer. Some information about him is included here not because his WW II career as a spy was of any particular moment, but because his work for Lucy spanned a long period, including the second, post-war phase of Lucy's career in espionage.
Lemmer represented a Zurich newspaper in Berlin and travelled to Switzerland repeatedly. He was in contact with one Burckhardt, the Swiss military attaché in Berlin who also had contacts in the 20th of July group and who served as a communications channel to Switzerland. He first appears in our holdings in a message of 22 October 1941, Dora to Director. Long is listed as the source and Lemmer, who is said to have obtained the information from the Foreign Ministry, as the sub-source. The information concerned the siege of Moscow. The message ends with "In the future I shall call him [Lemmer] Agnes." Our files, however, contain only two more messages citing Agnes. The dates are 13 August and 18 September 1943, and the messages are merely reports of the lack of morale at the German home front. Lemmer was born on 28 April 1898 in Remscheidt, Germany (although Dallin, for some unknown reason, thought that he was born in Odessa and lived in Russia for 17 years). He attended the Universities of Marburg and Frankfurt am Main. He joined the German Democratic Party (DDP), became chairman of the Young Democrats, and was also secretary-general of a trade union. In 1924 he was elected as a DDP representative to the Reichstag and thus became the youngest member of that body. He lost these posts when the Nazis seized power, and he was forbidden to write for any newspaper published in Germany. He became the Berlin correspondent for the Pester Lloyd of Budapest and the Neue Zuercher Zeitung as well as a reporter in Occupied Belgium for the Brussels Soir.
After the war Lemmer was accused in West Germany of having collaborated with the Nazis. He settled immediately after the war in the Berlin suburb of Klein-Machnow, in the Soviet sector, where he owned a house. In October 1945 he became the deputy chairman of the Christian Democratic Party (CDU) in the Soviet Zone and a member of the board of the Free German Trade Union Federation, the Communist FDGB. He was also deputy mayor of Klein-Machnow. He was in close and cordial contact with leading members of the Soviet military occupation. On 20 December 1947, however, the Soviet authorities removed Lemmer from the vice-chairmansbip of the CDU, ostensibly because of policy conflicts. He moved to West Berlin in 1949 and became editor of the anti-Communist Berlin Kurier. In 1950 he was elected to the five-man executive of the CDU in West Berlin. In January 1952 he was elected as a CDU representative to the Bundestag, and in December 1955 be became Chairman of the West Berlin CDU. In November 1956 he was appointed Minister of Postal and Telecommunications. In October 1957 be became Minister for All-German Affairs. (One report of that period stated innocently, "Lemmer ... is said to be opposed to the work of the Allied and German intelligence networks in West Berlin.") In 1966 Lemmer was a special representative of Chancellor Erhard in Berlin. He is currently listed as a retired Cabinet Minister who last held public office in 1965.
The same source who repeated the identities of the four World War II sources whom Lucy had named to him also said that Lemmer was a source for Lucy during the 1947-1953 period when Lucy and Xaver Schnieper worked for Czech intelligence.
The post-war charges of collaboration with the Nazis, which Lemrner denied and outrode, seem to have been true. During his interrogation after the war Walter Schellenberg said that Lemmer had been an agent of Amt VI.
Pakbo was of less value to Rado and the Soviets than was Long, just as Long and his group did not measure up to Sissy and her sources. Born 4 April 1900 in Staefa, Switzerland, Otto Puenter was a lawyer and a journalist who worked for the Socialist press in Bern. Reportedly he was a secret member of the Swiss Communist Party. He was in contact with the Swiss military intelligence service, which used him as a channel to pass to the Soviets selected items of intelhgence.35
Dallin has devoted an entire chapter to Puenter,36 but much of what appears therein is false. Puenter has, in fact, made many false statements. He said that information about the German General Staff which he obtained during World War II came from General Alfred Jodl. He asserted that he kept in a monastery in Switzerland the entire plan for the German attack upon Stalingrad in October 1942, which he himself encoded before passing it to Rado. He alleged that Werther stood for Wehrmacht and Lucy for Luftfahrtministerium (Ministry of Air). He said that Lucy was a Czech. He wove a complex and fascinating tale about a young Austrian radio operator who came from Dombirn, near the Austro-Swiss border. He had promised the home folks that he would transmit his location every night, just so that they would know where he was. He chanced to be assigned to Hitler's headquarters, with the result that Pakbo always knew the Fuehrer's whereabouts. The implausibility of this fable is, however, no greater than that inherent in his explanation of his cover name. He claimed that he had teams of agents in Pontrezina, Aarau, Kreuzlingen, Bern, and Orselina—hence, Pakbo. Actually, it is unlikely that he had teams of agents anywhere, and certainly improbable that they would be located at the unimportant places named. By his own account, one of his teams was at Feldkich/Dombirn, but his cover name contains neither an F nor a D. As a matter of fact, most of his contacts lived in Bern and Geneva.
Puenter has alleged that early in 1941 a Gaullist reported to him that the Swiss service had received accurate information about Hitler's plan to attack the USSR in a month or a month and a half. The Gaullist said he was looking for a contact with Moscow to pass on the information. Pakbo went to Rado to deliver the story—i.e., the attack was scheduled for 15 June 1941. Rado asked who was the source. Pakbo in turn inquired and was told that the man's name was Roessler. Rado then decided to get in direct contact with Roessler, and that connection continued thenceforth.
This is Pakbo's genius for fabrication at its best. In 1941 neither Lucy nor Pakbo himself had any connection with the Rote Drei. A Dora to Director message of 15 July 1942 included the following: "At the beginning of April a new source of information appeared; he has the cover name Pakbo ..." As was noted earlier, Lucy also joined the net in 1942. Secondly, Puenter has said in writing that he had never been in contact with Roessler and did not know his true name. Thirdly, Lucy did not meet Rado through Puenter for the simple reason that he never met Rado at all, as the traffic shows.
The question that naturally arises, then, is this: If Pakbo has told lies about important matters after the war, did he also lie to the Soviets during the war? Apart from a challenge on 7 October 1942, the Soviets seem to have accepted Pakbo's reports as valid and to have found them useful. Perhaps Pakbo, like Jim, merely tried to exaggerate the importance of his role after the war had ended.
Pakbo appears in 22 known messages, but only 6 of these contain any substantive information. The time span is from 15 July 1942 to 8 January 1944. Apparently he learned something about the Rote Kapelle arrests in Germany and reported accordingly, because on 5 October 1942 the Director asked for more information. And he also reported the arrest of Paul Boettcher, because on 8 January 1944 Moscow said, "As far as we know, Pakbo has never heard of Paul. How does it happen that he has heard so certainly about Paul's arrest?"
Like Lucy and Long, Pakbo had direct contact with the Swiss G2. His chief sub-source was Salter, whose identity has not been firmly established37 but who may have been Louis Suss, born 6 October 1890 in Beblenbeim, Alsace-Lorraine. A French citizen, Suss died in Switzerland on 25 April 1955. As of May 1968 his widow Friedel, nee Kirschbaum, lived in Cbene-Bourg, Geneva. There were two children, Christiane and Louis Michel. Christiane married an American ILO employee named Thompson. She was observed in 1955 at a meeting with a Soviet representative to the UN who is also a suspected intelligence operative.
Salter appeared in ten messages. He was in contact with former chancellor Josef Wirth and with British intelligence. He also knew Long and Kurz; in fact, compartmentation was often breached in the Rote Drei network.
One report says that a Professor Andre Oltramare and his son, Dr. Marc Oltramare, both passed intelligence to Puenter during the war and that he relayed their information to the Soviets. Andre Oltramare was a professor at the University of Geneva, where he lived with Jeanne Hersch, a philosopher much younger than he. At one time he was president or vice-president of the Geneva chapter of the Socialist Party. In 1933 be was a member of the Geneva Relief Committee for Political Prisoners, on which Pierre Nicole also served. Among his associates in 1942 were Jean Vincent, Max Horngacher, and Maurice Ducommun, all of whom were suspected of being Soviet agents.
One Mario Bodenmann, a Swiss Socialist and journalist, has also been reported as a sub-source for Pakbo.
A probable Pakbo source was "Bruder," who appears in only two messages, both from Dora to Director, dated 27 January and 10 May 1943. Both messages provide information about the production at the Oerlikon arms factory in Switzerland. The president of Werkzeugmaschinenfabrik Oerlikon, Buehrle and Co., was Emil Georg Buehrle. In middle and late 1943, as Foote has also related, the network was extremely short of funds. Pakbo and others solicited funds from Swiss businessmen, promising profitable post-war commercial orders from the USSR in exchange. Pakbo approached Buehrle, who did business with the USSR, on this basis; and Buebrle contributed 80,000 francs. After the war the Soviets refused to honor the obligations incurred on behalf of the Rote Drei. Most of the businessmen complained bitterly, and Pakbo has alleged that he made some effort to repay the loans that he had personally solicited. Buehrle, however, merely wrote off the loss.38
Despite published claims to the contrary, there is no reason to believe that a source called "Lily of the Vatican" ever existed. Pakbo has denied that he had a line to the Vatican.
Foote claimed in Handbook for Spies that he and Rado were equals, or nearly equals, each having his own network, code, and communications system. The truth, however, is that Foote, like Puenter, grossly exaggerated his wartime importance. The traffic does not bear out Foote's claim that he had sub-sources of his own. On the contrary, Moscow clearly regarded him primarily as a W(T operator, although the most senior member in that category, and secondarily as a support man expected to give Rado help in problems of funding. Foote, whose cover name was Jim, appears 20 times in the messages in our possession. The time span is 31 October 1942 to 14 April 1944. These messages contain no new information, but they are of value in reducing Jim's self-portrait to its true, minor dimensions.
The Structure of the Rote Drei
Now that part of the Rote Drei structure has been partially excavated and cleansed of distortions, the outline of the whole can be delineated. Alexander Rado is at the apex of the network, having inherited the leader's role from Maria Poliakova and Ursula Beurton. Rado had three principal sources: Rachel Duebendorfer, Georges Blun, and Otto Puenter, listed in order of decreasing importance. Each of these had a network of sub-agents. Through Christian Schneider and Rudolf Roessler, Duebendorfer was in touch with the most important sources in the entire network: Werther, Teddy, Anna, and Olga. Others of Sissy's known contacts, by code name, were Paul, Pierre, Vita, and Mario. Probable additional, though minor, members of her net were Bill, Bircber, Brand, Diener, Fanny, Fernand, Schwerin and Stefan. Among his sub-sources Roessler listed, by name or description, General Hans Oster, Hans Bernd Gisevius, Carl Goerdeler, and an unknown man named Boelitz.
The second principal agent, Georges Blun, alias Long, directed a network which consisted chiefly of Agnes, Kurz, Grau, Rot, Fanny, and perhaps Feld.
The third principal agent, Otto Puenter, alias Pakbo, headed a net that included Salter and Bruder, as well as others whose cover names are not known.
Alexander Foote, alias Jim, was the most important of the radio operators. The others were Edmond and Olga Hamel (Eduard and Maude), Margarete Bolli !later Bolli-Schatz, cover name Rosa), probably Harry and Roger, and possibly others.
The Role of Karel Sedlacek
To this point we have viewed the Red Three network chiefly as an apparatus which produced intelligence for the Soviet military service. But Lucy's information, some or all of Longs, and probably Pakbo s also went to the West. The vital product, Lucy's, reached the Allies through a Czech colonel whose true name was Karel Sedlacek and whose alias was Uncle Tom. We have his story from General Frantisek Moravec, who as Sedlacek's superior had sent him to Switzerland in the first place. In 1935 Sedlacek was working in Southern Bohemia as an intelligence officer whose targets were in Bavaria. His talents and skill caught Moravec's eye, and Sedlacek was sent to Prague for a year's training in operating a WJT set, secret writing, and encoding and decoding. He was already fluent in German. In June 1937, his training completed and his cover prepared, Sedlacek left Czechoslovakia as Karl Seltzinger, a correspondent of the Prague newspaper Narodni Listy. For more than a year he built his cover in Zurich; then, by the fall of 1938, his first reports, military and political, arrived in Prague. By then the Czech officer was a friend of Major Hans Hausamann, the Swiss intelligence officer who directed the conveniently unofficial `Bureau Ha." In fact, it was Hausamann who provided Sedlacek's information.
By the spring of 1939 Sedlacek had begun to feel uneasy in Zurich, which was swarming with German agents. He moved to Lucerne, where Lucy was living. The two met because both used journalism as cover. Beginning in September of 1939, Sedlacek was reporting by W/T to the London Czechs on German OB, movements, weapons, etc. His information came from Hausamann, who got it from Lucy, who in turn decided what information would go to which recipients. From 19 May to 6 September 1944 Lucy was under arrest, charged with passing intelligence to the Soviet and British services. From the date of his arrest, the flow of Lucy's information from Sedlacek to London stopped completely and finally. (It is thus established that information from Lucy to both the East and the West had ceased before the 20th of July 1944 and that therefore Lucy's sources could have been among the conspirators.) Sedlacek did continue to transmit other information to London until the war ended, but after Lucy's arrest Sedlacek's reporting deteriorated rapidly in both quality and quantity. Promoted to lieutenant colonel after the war, Sedlacek became the Czech military attaché in Bern, where he remained until recalled to Prague in early 1947. How he was instrumental in launching Roessler upon the second phase of his career in espionage is reported below.
Earlier in this account, in a section dealing with Dr. Josef Wirth, a message of 5 October 1943, Dora to Director, was cited. Included therein was this statement: "According to Wirth the German Embassy in Bern is extremely interested in Sokolin." The remark appears in a context chiefly concerned with the Free Germany Committee, conceived in and directed from Moscow.
Vladimir Sokolin (spelled Sokoline in some accounts) may have been the alias of one Vladimir Shapiro or Schapiro. Or Shapiro may have been alias, and Sokolin the true name. We shall call him Sokolin. The records which concern him are extensive but have not been summarized here because all available information indicates that he was not a part of the Rote Drei. Born in Geneva of Jewish parents, the father a White Russian and the mother Scottish, Sokolin became in 1937 the Under Secretary of the USSR's Permanent Delegation to the International Labor Office, League of Nations, Geneva, as well as the Assistant Secretary General of the League of Nations. There was a seeming break with Moscow after the USSR was dropped from the League of Nations in December 1939 as a result of the invasion of Finland. But either the split was unreal, designed to strengthen cover, or it was patched up and healed, because the reports of Sokolin's war time activities clearly indicate espionage conducted on behalf of the USSR. He was in touch with Leon Nicole, Alexander Abramson, and perhaps others who were associated with the Rote Drei. It was also reported that through one of these contacts he asked Rado if he could be of service and that Rado relayed the suggestion to Moscow, where it was rejected. There are clear indications that Sokolin was engaged in economic espionage for the USSR after the war ended. It appears, then, that in this instance as in others, Soviet intelligence tried not to mix their networks, the security of which required separation.
Phase II: Lucy's Post-War Operation
Here our account would have ended if Karel Sedlacek had not known Xaver Franz Josef Schnieper, a Swiss citizen bom on 6 January 1910 in Emman, Lucerne Canton. He had attended the Universities of Koenigsberg, Berlin, and Vienna, majoring in drama and intending to direct plays, an ambition which he had to abandon when the Nazis seized power. He first met Rudolf Roessler, who w
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