In 1941, the United Kingdom faced its darkest hour: It stood alone against the Germans, who had chased British forces out of France, Norway, and Greece. All it had left were desperate measures - commando raids, intelligence coups, feats of derring-do. Any such "novel enterprise", wrote Admiral John Godfrey, Director of Naval Intelligence, required "an officer with drive and imagination of the highest order". He found one in Commander Ian Fleming.
"Lots of information about Commandos"
In A Genius for Deception, Nicholas Rankin offers a lively and comprehensive history of how Britain bluffed, tricked, and spied its way to victory in two world wars. As Rankin shows, a coherent program of strategic deception emerged in World War I, resting on the pillars of camouflage, propaganda, secret intelligence, and special forces. All forms of deception found an avid sponsor in Winston Churchill, who carried his enthusiasm for deceiving the enemy into World War II.
"A page turner"