Codeword: Direktor

Title:                      Codeword: Direktor

Author:                 Heinz Höhne

Höhne, Heinz (1971). Codeword: Direktor: The Story of the Red Orchestra. New York: Coward, McCann, and Geoghegan

LCCN:    79154774

D810.S7 H5713 1971



  • Translation of Kennwort: Direktor. Translated from the German by Richard Barry

Date Posted:      November 15, 2016

This is a review by the Defense Intelligence School.[1]

Heinz Höhne provides a new and provocative evaluation of the famous Soviet spy ring, the “Red Orchestra” or “Rote Kapelle.” Superbly documented with organizational charts, glossary, extensive notes, personality data, and bibliography, the book presents a dramatic account of the confrontation between the Soviet ring and the Nazi counterespionage organization dedicated to its neutralization and destruction. Espionage, counterespionage, and controlled deception operations are described in sufficient detail to satisfy both the general reader and the professional intelligence officer. Noteworthy is the author’s contention that both the Germans and the Russians (as well as other observers) have greatly exaggerated the impact of the ring on the course of the war. {See also Trepper, The Great Game[2], and Central Intelligence Agency, The Rote Kapelle[3]).

Reviewed by Paul W. Blackstock and Frank L. Schaf[4]

An account of how a group of ill-prepared Communists in Germany, a few years before World War lI, organized themselves into an espionage network to become known as the Rote Kapalle (Red Orchestra). Their self-imposed mission was to infiltrate the German High Command to obtain information which could be relayed to Moscow via clandestine radio circuits. An excellent account, well researched and documented, by a distinguished German journalist who has written other books related to intelligence.

[1] Defense Intelligence School (1981). Bibliography of Intelligence Literature: A Critical And Annotated Bibliography of Open-Source Literature (7th ed, rev.). Washington, DC: Defense Intelligence School, p. 32

[2] Trepper, Leopold (1977). The Great Game: Memoirs of the Spy Hitler Couldn’t Silence. New York: McGraw-Hill

[3] Central Intelligence Agency (1979, 1986). The Rote Kapelle: The CIA’s History of Soviet Intelligence And Espionage Networks In Western Europe 1936-1945. Frederick, MD: University Publications of America

[4] Blackstock, Paul W. (1978) and Frank L. Schaf, Jr. Intelligence, Espionage, Counterespionage, And Covert Operations: A Guide to Information Sources. Detroit: Gale Research Co., p. 170


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2 Responses to Codeword: Direktor

  1. Pingback: The Great Game | Intelligence Analysis and Reporting

  2. Pingback: Espionage and Counterespionage, Chapter 14 | Intelligence Analysis and Reporting

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