NO BUGLES FOR SPIES: Tales of the OSS by Robert Hayden Alcorn


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By mid-1942, after a Washington shuffle, the Office of Coordinator of information had become the Office of Strategic Services. By then, Colonel, later General, ""Wild Bill"" Donovan, the ""Wizard of OSS"", was ""sitting stop a lusty, burgeoning, dynamic organization stamped with is own imprint"". The story of how that organization grew, the sort of operatives and methods it employed, the schemes and techniques of financing its activities, and the things it was able to accomplish for the war effort still makes exciting reading, even this many years after the war. Alcorn served with the organization from its earliest days, with Donovan both directly and indirectly; his observations would indicate that the man was nearly unique in his ability to grasp quantities of detail. While Alcorn does not leave out some mention of prima donnas and other undesirable; who occasionally cropped up, and he is moderately censorious of MacArthur's refusal to let OSS sperate freely in the Pacific theatre, his overall picture is one of uncommon harmony for such a complex effort. The emphasis is on people, rather than techniques, he has a real grasp of how to project human-interest material. The thrills, chills, and tears are well balanced, and the effect is exhilarating.

Publisher: David McKay