Miscellaneous Topics

Topics included here:

1. Cryptography

2. British SAS

3. Ireland

4. Soviet Union/Russia


1. Cryptography

Bollinger, Ray. "Spies Who Changed History: Mrs. Elizebeth Fr[ie]dman, A Coast Guard Secret Weapon." Naval Intelligence Professional Quarterly 23, no. 3 (Jun. 2007): 26-27, 31.

Detailed from the Treasury Department to the Coast Guard, Mrs. Friedman broke the codes of the "rumrunners" during the Prohibition era. Additional and updated information on the S/V I'm Alone incident is provided in "Boats" [pseud. Ray Bollinger], "Spies who changed History: Boatswains of the Rum War," Naval Intelligence Professional Quarterly 24, no. 1 (Jan. 2008): 51-53.

Brown, Raymond J. "Admiral Billard and the Rumrunners." Naval Intelligence Professionals Quarterly 9, no. 4 (October 1993): 9-10.

Childs, James R. "Breaking Codes Was This Couple's Lifetime Career." Smithsonian Magazine 18, no. 3 (1987): 128-144.

Smoot, Betsy Rohaly. "An Accidental Cryptologist: The Brief Career of Genevieve Young Hitt." Cryptologia 35, no. 2 (Apr. 2011): 164-175.

From "Abstract": "Genevieve Young Hitt, wife of Colonel Parker Hitt, was one of the first woment to perform cryptologic functions for the U.S. Army, first as an unpaid amateur during the Punitive Expedition and later as a paid cryptographer during World War I."

2. British SAS

Ford, Sarah. One Up: A Woman in Action with the SAS. London: HarperCollins, 1997. New York: HarperCollins, 1997. [pb]

According to CASIS Intelligence Newsletter 31/28, this autobiographical book describes the author's "two years as a member of the 14 Intelligence Company of the British Special Air Service (SAS)." The unit, formed in 1974, "provide[s] surveillance in the most hostile parts of Northern Ireland." West, History 26.1, notes that this book is written by the first woman member of this "extraordinarily secretive" unit. The organization "mounts highly sophisticated surveillance operations." See also, James Rennie, The Operators (1997).

3. Ireland

McCoole, Sinéad. No Ordinary Women: Irish Female Activists in the Revolutionary Years 1900-1923. Madison, WI: University of Wisconsin Press, 2003. Dublin: O'Brien Press, 2003.

From publisher: "Spies, snipers, couriers, gun-runners, medics -- women played a major role in the fight for Ireland's freedom, risking loss of life and family for a cause to which they were totally committed." This work includes the biographies of sixty-five women activists.

Ryan, Meda. Michael Collins and the Women Who Spied for Ireland. Dublin: Mercier Press, 2006.

4. Soviet Union/Russia

Fischer, Benjamin B. "Farewell to Sonia, the Spy Who Haunted Britain." International Journal of Intelligence and Counterintelligence 15, no. 1 (Spring 2002): 61-76.

Fischer notes that, strictly speaking, Ruth Werner "was not ... a spy. As a GRU ... agent and illegal who served as liaison between the Moscow Center and the real spies, she was rather a spy-handler." As SONIA of the Venona transcripts, she handled both Klaus Fuchs and Melita Norwood, work that "put[s] her in the superstar category" in espionage history.

Kronenbitter, Rita T.

1. "The Okhrana's Female Agents: Part I: Russian Women." Studies in Intelligence 9, no. 2 (Spring 1965): 25-41.

"The Okhrana depended heavily on female agents, particularly in foreign operations.... The best of the female operatives ... [had] their paramount motivation in patriotism and devotion to the anti-revolutionary cause.... Women could be the most valuable of agents, engaged in extremely dangerous or sensitive operations, but they never held positions entailing any kind of supervisory function."

2. "The Okhrana's Female Agents: Part II: Indigenous Recruits." Studies in Intelligence 9, no. 3 (Summer 1965): 59-78.

The author extends her story to the Okhrana's non-Russian female agents.

Return to Women Table of Contents