MI5 British Security Service Operations 1909-1945, The True Story Of The Most Secret Counter-Espionage Organisation In The Word

Some have suggested that the author is the unofficial historian for the British intelligence services, a murky world where nothing is as it seems. This is the most comprehensive and insightful history of British Counter-intelligence from 1909 to 1945 – Most Highly Recommended

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NAME: MI5 British Security Service Operations 1909-1945, The True Story Of The 
Most Secret Counter-Espionage Organisation In The Word
FILE: R2980
AUTHOR: Nigel West
PUBLISHER: Pen and Sword, frontline
BINDING: hard back
PAGES: 314
PRICE: £25.00
GENRE: Non Fiction
SUBJECT: MI5, MI6, Security Service, Secret Intelligence Service, SIS, counter-
intelligence, spies, spy masters, turned agents, double agents, triple agents, 
clandestine operations, code breaking

ISBN: 1-52675-570-X

IMAGE: B2980.jpg
BUYNOW: tinyurl.com/yy3c9sy3
LINKS:  
DESCRIPTION: Some have suggested that the author is the unofficial historian for 
the British intelligence services, a murky world where nothing is as it seems. This is 
the most comprehensive and insightful history of British Counter-intelligence 
from 1909 to 1945 –   Most Highly Recommended

The world of intelligence and counter-intelligence circulates information and 
misinformation in a manner that makes it very difficult to understand which is which. 
The British Intelligence Services are world-class masters of this and more. Many will 
use names like MI5, MI6, and GCHQ as though they know exactly what these 
organizations are, understand what they do, and what their achievements are. MI5 is 
a classic example where it is a popular name for an organization that is really named
'The Security Service'. The author has set out its history with detailed insight that 
must be taken at face value because there is no way of checking to identify which, 
if any, elements are really misinformation.

Intelligence and Counter-Intelligence are by their very nature secret organizations. 
They operate in a world where there are so many shades of grey and in a chess game 
with enemies, where both sides manoeuvrer for advantage and attempt to deceive 
each other. In the process, there is so much which must remain secret for extended 
periods. The process of setting Classification and Sensitivity labels, a most basic 
method of securing information, has to recognize the value and durability of 
information. If an intelligence organization acquires verified information of value, 
that information has a life. There is no point in protecting information that is no 
longer of value and sensitivity, requiring it to be re-classified or de-classified. The 
position of an enemy military unit may have a very high value for a very short period 
of time. This value is rapidly overtaken by events and of itself could be re-classified 
or de-classified after perhaps only hours. However, it may disclose methods 
employed in its acquisition that could remain valuable and sensitive information for 
decades.

Even something as mundane as the consumption of tea and biscuits at a location 
could be very sensitive information because it would indicate an increase or decrease 
in the number of people at that location. The Israeli intelligence services  had one 
location where most of the facility was underground but the car park was an open 
ground level facility that was overlooked by blocks of high-rise apartments occupied 
by Arabs. When Israel was preparing to take significant military action, the number 
of people in the facility increased dramatically and the Arab agents only had to keep 
count of the number of parked vehicles and the numbers coming and going. For such 
a highly professional and effective intelligence service to make such a basic mistake 
may be surprising but it indicates just how careful intelligence services need to be in 
avoiding the showing of cards and how the opposition must always look for even the
 smallest details.

Given these factors, it is always hard to decide just how accurate a book of this nature 
really is. The author has a very well established reputation for detail and accuracy in 
his books about the intelligence community and this book certainly follows in that 
established pattern. The British Security Service was developed in the preparations 
for potential war with Germany. From its beginning it was tasked to provide a 
counter-intelligence service. An important part of that mission was to infiltrate 
organisations that were suspected of presenting a threat to Britain and to identify 
opposing intelligence agents and their networks. In two World Wars the Security 
Service was amazingly effective in preventing the enemy from acquiring accurate 
information to assist military and political action against Britain.

This history of success has been laid out by the author in such an enticing and 
absorbing manner, it has the qualities of a good novel, keeping the reader turning 
the pages to the end.