Mackenzie, Angus. Secrets: The CIA's War at Home. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1997.

Peake, IJI&C 11.1 (a shorter version appears in History 26.3), finds that this book actually targets "the entire United States government," not just the CIA of the title. The book grows out of an antipathy fostered by harrassment by government officials when he was publishing an anti-war newspaper in Beloit, Wisconsin, in the early 1970s. For the reviewer, the problem is not with the events Mackenzie relates, but rather his analysis of those events and the selectivity of the topics he addresses. Perhaps, the only value to this book is that it "shows what happens when history is written to conform to preconceptions."


Mackenzie, Compton.

Clark comment: The following volumes are the memories of Compton Mackenzie, literary light and World War I spymaster/political agent.

For Ferris, I&NS 4.2, Mackenzie's "autobiographies are infinitely better history than are most memoirs.... They are one of best extant accounts both of British intelligence during the First World War and of covert action in general." Constantinides advises that Mackenzie's volumes be read in conjunction with Lawson's Tales of Aegean Intrigue and Thomson's The Allied Secret Service in Greece. Even then, doubt can still remain as to whether any or all represent an accurate picture.

1. Gallipoli Memories. London: Cassell, 1929. Frederick, MD: University Press of America, 1987.

2. First Athenian Memories. London: Cassell, 1931.

Constantinides says that this book covers Mackenzie's activities as head of the British secret service counterespionage section in Athens from 1915 to early 1916. He describes British intelligence operations as "disorganized, confused, uncoordinated, and marked by conflicts."

3. Greek Memories. London: Chatto & Windus, 1939.

It is in this volume of his memoirs that Mackenzie moves into what Constantinides calls "the action phase of his career.... He frankly recounts the operations of his organization not only against the Germans in Greece ... but also those in Greece who were considered enemies of the Entente.... This is the story of an intelligence officer of great vigor and talent, who helped create an organization within a foreign ... state that acted as a security service."

4. Aegean Memories. London: Chatto & Windus, 1940.

Constantinides: Mackenzie gives "facts and details on the infighting within the British government and its intelligence organizations and the jockeying for intelligence supremacy in Greece in World War I. He has some extreme examples of lack of coordination, misdirection in intelligence work, rivalries, and even insubordination."

5. My Life and Time: Octave Five, 1915-1923. London: Chatto, 1966.

See also, Linklater, Compton Mackenzie, A Life (1987).

Mackenzie, Hillary, and John Holland. "A Case of Espionage: The FBI Investigates an American Diplomat." Maclean's, 7 Aug. 1989, 27.

Mackenzie, R.B.

1. "Intelligence Starts at the Top." Marine Corps Gazette 57 (Jul. 1973): 40-44.

2. "Intelligence War Game." Marine Corps Gazette 58 (Jun. 1974): 23-29.


Mackenzie, S.P.

1. "Citizens in Arms: The Home Guard and the Internal Security of the United Kingdom, 1940-41." Intelligence and National Security 6, no. 3 (Jul. 1991): 548-572.

"By mid-1941,... security-related problems involving the [Home Guard] force had largely faded away. The extension of central control [by the War Office] over all aspects of Home Guard work, and the concurrent regularization of standards and expectations, meant that both over-zealousness in security duties and the related spectre of the force turning into a home-grown Red Guard were no longer matters of real concern."

2. The Home Guard: A Military and Political History. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995.

Crang, I&NS 12.2, finds this to be "an excellent account" of the history of the Home Guard. Mackenzie concludes that the Home Guard "played an important role ... in fostering morale by giving people a means of direct participation in the war effort."


Mackenzie, William J.M. Secret History of SOE: The Special Operations Executive, 1940-1945. London: St. Ermin's, 2000. New York: Little, Brown, 2002.

From publisher: "At the end of World War II, Britain's Cabinet Office commissioned ... William Mackenzie[] to undertake a comprehensive secret history of Special Operations Executive. Given access to both personnel and surviving wartime files, Mackenzie's report was be used by intelligence agencies in a future conflict.... [T]his highly classified document has been made available."

Neville Wylie, "Introduction: Special Operations Executive -- New Approaches and Perspectives," Intelligence and National Security 20, no.1 (Mar. 2005), notes that this work was written between 1945 and 1947. It is "a masterful account of SOE's war," although the author's "focus is ... a narrow one. His perspective is that of the headquarters staff..., not the agent in the field. He is slim on operational details, his narrative ventures only rarely into Africa and the Middle East and passes over SOE's activities in the Far East in complete silence."

Saul Kelly, "A Succession of Crises: SOE in the Middle East, 1940-45," Intelligence and National Security 20, no 1 (Mar. 2005), 143/fn. 1, recommends the "useful, recent bibliography" in M.R.D. Foot's foreword to this work.


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