World War II


A - Bn

Aldrich, Richard J. "Cold War Codebreaking and Beyond: The Legacy of Bletchley Park." In Action This Day: Bletchley Park from the Breaking of the Enigma Code to the Birth of the Modern Computer, eds. Ralph Erskine and Michael Smith, 403-430, 511-515. London and New York: Bantam, 2001.

Alford, Vivienne. "Naval Section VI." In Codebreakers: The Inside Story of Bletchley Park, eds. F. Harry Hinsley and Alan Stripp, 68-70. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1993.

Alvarez, David, ed.

1. "Special Issue on Allied and Axis Signals Intelligence in World War II." Intelligence and National Security 14, no. 1 (Spring 1999): Entire issue.

Click for Table of Contents.

2. Allied and Axis Signals Intelligence in World War II. London: Frank Cass, 1999.

Clark comment: This book consists of articles originally published in Intelligence and National Security 14, no. 1 (Spring 1999). Gardner, RUSI Journal, Dec. 1999, finds this collection "strong on a wide selection of intelligence topics and nations. Just about the only omission of note ... is the USSR."

Andrew, Christopher.

1. "Bletchley Park in Pre-War Perspective." In Action This Day: Bletchley Park from the Breaking of the Enigma Code to the Birth of the Modern Computer, eds. Michael Smith and Ralph Erskine, 1-14, 458-459. London: Bantam, 2001.

2. "Bletchley Park in Postwar Perspective." In Action This Day: Bletchley Park from the Breaking of the Enigma Code to the Birth of the Modern Computer, eds. Michael Smith and Ralph Erskine, 431-440, 515-518. London: Bantam, 2001.

Andrew, Christopher. "Gordon Welchman, Sir Peter Marychurch and 'The Birth of Ultra.'" Intelligence and National Security 1, no. 2 (May. 1986): 277-280.

This article reproduces a letter from Marychurch to Welchman accusing the latter of endangering security in his discussion of Ultra's beginnings in The Hut Six Story (1982).

Baldwin, Mark. "Wartime Codebreaking." Book & Magazine Collector, Jul. 1997, 28-39.

According to Kruh, Cryptologia 22.2, the author "provides a lively review of British books on World War II ... codebreaking, especially the work on Enigma ciphers at Bletchley Park."

Balme, David, as told to John McCormick. "Gott Mit Whom?" MHQ: The Quarterly Journal of Military History 10, no. 3 (Spring 1998): 110-111.

The former Royal Navy sub-lieutenant tells the story of the capture of U-110 in May 1941 and of his direct role in the acquisition of the submarine's all-important Enigma machine and the machine's June settings.

Barrett, Neil. The Binary Revolution: The History and Development of the Computer. London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 2006.

Ferry, The Guardian, 29 Jul. 2006, calls this an "ill-researched book" that "is only the latest to make the entirely erroneous claim that Colossus was a machine used to crack Enigma codes and to imply that Turing was its progenitor. Fortunately, with the more or less simultaneous appearance of Jack Copeland's and Paul Gannon's comprehensive treatments, there is no longer any excuse for such casual disregard for the facts."

Bateman, Gary M. "The Enigma Cipher Machine." Military Intelligence 8, no. 2 (Apr.-Jun. 1982): 24-28.

This is a brief survey of the development of the German Enigma cipher machine and of its initial breaking by Polish cryptologists.

Batey, Keith. "How Dilly Knox and His Girls Broke the Abwehr Enigma." In Action This Day: Bletchley Park from the Breaking of the Enigma Code to the Birth of the Modern Computer, eds. Ralph Erskine and Michael Smith, 301-316, 499. London and New York: Bantam, 2001.

Batey, Mavis. "Breaking Italian Naval Enigma." In Action This Day: Bletchley Park from the Breaking of the Enigma Code to the Birth of the Modern Computer, eds. Ralph Erskine and Michael Smith, 94-109, 474. London and New York: Bantam, 2001.

Batey, Mavis.

1. "Dilly Knox -- A Reminiscence of This Pioneer Enigma Cryptanalyst." Cryptologia 32, no. 2 (Apr. 2008): 104-130.

The author (then Mavis Lever) worked with Knox from 1940. Here, she reviews his career from Room 40 in World War I until his death in 1943.

2. Dilly: The Man Who Broke Enigmas. London: Dialogue, 2009.

Peake, Studies 54.4 (Dec. 2010), finds that the author creates a portrait of "a brilliant, absent-minded intellectual ... who recruited a group of women ... and broke some of the most important Enigma codes of the war.... Dilly is an important book in the history of cryptography, and it shows how much this critical field is both a human art and a science." For Christensen, Cryptologia 35.2 (Apr. 2011), this is an "interesting and well-written biography" that has "a most comprehensive" index.

Beesly, Patrick. "Who Was the Third Man at Pyry?" Cryptologia 11, no. 2 (Apr. 1987): 78-80.

According to Sexton, "Beesly identifies Humphrey Sandwi[th], not Stewart Menzies of SIS, as the third member" of the British group that met with the Poles in July 1939.

Bell, Ernest L. An Initial View of Ultra as an American Weapon. Keene, NH: TSU Press, 1977.

Petersen identifies this work as "[t]hree released U.S. official documents on use of Ultra." Constantinides comments that it "is interesting to learn of the tight controls on Ultra dissemination even within the War Department."

Bennett, Ralph.

1. "Fortitude, Ultra and the 'Need to Know.'" Intelligence and National Security 4, no. 3 (Jul. 1989): 482-502.

Clark comment: Bennett argues that the linkage between the Fortitude deception plan and Ultra intelligence is perhaps less clear than it has been presented. Sexton says this article is "well worth reading."

2. Intelligence Investigations: How Ultra Changed History. London: Frank Cass, 1996.

Clark comment: This is a collection of 10 previously published essays. For those with an interest in World War II and/or Ultra but without access to the journals in which Bennett tends to publish, Intelligence Investigations would be an excellent place to begin a useful acquaintance. Stafford, I&NS 13.2, notes that Bennett's introduction to the volume "provides a balance sheet of where we are now" in the study of Ultra's impact on the course of World War II.

3. "Knight's Move at Dravar: Ultra and the Attempt on Tito's Life, 15 May 1944." Journal of Contemporary History 22 (Apr. 1987): 195-207.

Clark comment: The author raises and, then, answers in the negative the question of whether Ultra gave the Allies foreknowledge of the Germans' effort to kill Tito. Sexton finds this article "[e]specially valuable for Bennett's insights on the handling of ULTRA and its limitations."

4. "Ultra and Some Command Decisions." Journal of Contemporary History 16 (Jan. 1981): 131-151.

5. Ultra in the West: The Normandy Campaign 1944-45. London: Hutchinson, 1979. New York: Scribner's, 1980.

According to Constantinides, Bennett seeks "to portray the Allied campaign of 1944-45 solely through the intelligence provided by Ultra, to show how forecasts of enemy action were derived from it, and to deduce Ultra's contribution to victory.... [T]he book deserves the accolade 'well done.'" Pforzheimer comments that "details sometimes make this book heavy going," but "it is highly regarded by many historians and specialists in the field."

Berends, A. A. Chasing Enigma: Procurement of German Army ENIGMA Messages in the North West Europe Campaign, 1944-45. Yarra Glen, Victoria, Australia: Ancestral Publications, 1995.

Kruh, Cryptologia 21.3, notes that the author served as an officer in Australia's 30 Wireless Group Intelligence Station (WGIS). The focus here is on intercept activities, and the result "is especially interesting because it provides an insider's view with details only available from someone on the scene."

Bertrand, Gustave. ENIGMA ou la plus grande énigma de la guerre, 1939-1945. Paris: Librairie Plon, 1973.

Polmar and Allen describe Bertrand as the "[l]eading French cryptologist of the World War II era," whose efforts helped to break the German ciphers. After the war, he rose to the rank of general in the French intelligence services. Constantinides sees Bertrand's book as "one of the most important works ... on the history of Allied cryptologic successes against Enigma.... [T]he latest evidence ... supports the author's story." Bertrand gives "the Poles the main credit for the early successes against the Enigma machine,... [and] also credits the aid provided by French intelligence." To Sexton, these memoirs are "somewhat self-serving but generally accurate."

Bleich, H.L. "Alan Turing: The Machine, the Enigma, and the Test." MD Computing 12, no. 5 (1995): 333-334.

Bloch, Gilbert. Tr., C.A. Deavours.

1. "Enigma Before Ultra: Polish Work and the French Contribution." Cryptologia, Jul. 1987: 142-155.

2. "Enigma Before Ultra: The Polish Success and Check." Cryptologia, Oct. 1987: 227-233.

3. "Enigma Avant Ultra/Enigma Before Ultra." Cryptologia, Jul. 1988: 178-184.

Sexton identifies these articles as translations of chapters 3, 4, and 5 of Bloch's privately published Enigma Avant Ultra (1930-1940) (1988).

Bloch, Gilbert. "Polish Reconstitution of the German Military Enigma and the First Decryptments of Its Messages." Journal of Intelligence History 1, no. 1 (Summer 2001). [http://www.intelligence-history.org/jih/previous.html]

From abstract: "The improved 1930 Militär-Enigma ... involve[d] provisions liable to jeopardize security, which, in combination with documents furnished by Hans-Thilo Schmidt (HE/Asche) to the French, would eventually enable three brilliant Polish mathematicians [Marian Rejewski, Henryk Zygalski, and Jerzy Rózycki] to decipher most of the German Army messages between 1933 and 1938.... Only in March 1939, after the Germans had added two more rotors to the Enigma, did the flow stop. When the British promised the Poles assistance in time of need, it was the beginning of close cooperation between Poland, France, and Great Britain."

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[1. Photo of Enigma machine from: https://www.cia.gov/cia/information/artifacts/enigma.htm]