Far Eastern File: Intelligence War in the Far East, 1930-45 by Peter Elphick soon to be presented for sale on the super BookLovers of Bath web site!
Published: London: Hodder & Stoughton, 1997, Hardback in dust wrapper.
Illustrated by way of: Black & White Photographs; Maps; Maps to the endpapers and blanks;
From the cover: During the 1930s the Far East was a fertile hunting ground for the espionage and counterespionage agents of many nations, especially for those of Great Britain, the United States and Japan, as well as of Germany, Italy and the USSR. Sometimes they worked in remote places on the border of Manchuria and Russia, or in the jungles of Malaya and Thailand; while others operated in Tokyo, Singapore, Manila and Hong Kong, not to mention that international melting pot and powder keg, Shanghai.
Throughout, the author emphasises the Japanese subversion and fifth-column activity; but in the background of operations were the spies of the communication airwaves, the so-called Signals Intelligence (or Sigint) operators who plucked diplomatic, consular, military and naval coded messages out of the ether and passed them to the cryptanalysts. At the centre of the British Sigint and intelligence co-ordination operations was the Far East Combined Bureau, a highly secret organisation, established in Hong Kong in 1935, which is here researched for the first time through recently released material from the Public Record Office and unpublished accounts of surviving officers. These reveal its impact and that of its successors on the eventual outcome of the Pacific war.
Using the latest published information, Peter Elphick illuminates fascinating new facets of many important issues including Britains appeasement policy towards Japan, the Melville Cox affair, the S. S. Automedon incident and the conspiracy theories which claim Churchill and Roosevelt had prior knowledge of the attack on Pearl Harbor.
Peter Elphicks unrivalled knowledge of the period and locale combined with his research into official intelligence material only released in the 1980s make Far Eastern File a book of unique importance and lasting interest.
Very Good in Very Good Dust Wrapper.
Black boards with Gilt titling to the Spine. [XVII] 510 pages. Index. Bibliography. 9½” x 6¼”.