Quais batalhas da Segunda Guerra Mundial o cracking do Enigma influenciou decisivamente?

Quais batalhas da Segunda Guerra Mundial o cracking do Enigma influenciou decisivamente?

Tendo acabado de assistir O jogo da imitação, Estou curioso sobre a influência do cracking do Enigma no resultado da Segunda Guerra Mundial.

Quais batalhas as informações decodificadas pela Enigma influenciaram? Quais batalhas provavelmente teriam sido perdidas sem a quebra do código?


De acordo com as "Ordens de Marcha", a Enigma teve um impacto decisivo na (Segunda) Batalha de El Alamein. Os primeiros ataques de Montgomery foram repelidos com grandes perdas. Em circunstâncias diferentes, ele (ou outro comandante) pode ter interrompido o ataque (como o general US Grant fez em Cold Harbor, na Guerra Civil).

Mas a Enigma alertou Montgomery para o fato de que as perdas de Rommel foram tão pesadas em termos absolutos, e duas vezes mais pesadas em termos proporcionais (Montgomery ultrapassava Rommel em pelo menos dois para um), e que Rommel estava em "forma verdadeiramente terrível". Portanto, Montgomery continuou o ataque e destruiu o exército de Rommel por atrito.

A Enigma desempenhou um papel em campanhas posteriores, na Itália, Normandia, etc., mas nunca tão decisivamente quanto em El Alamein.


A batalha mais óbvia que foi influenciado por ENIGMA pode, ironicamente, ser os (estágios iniciais do) Batalha do Bulge. A paranóia de Hitler tinha finalmente avançado a tal estado em 1944 que ele estava convencido de que os Aliados estavam espionando sua inteligência; então ele insistiu que todos os planos traçados para aquele ataque NÃO usassem a cifra quebrada. É provável que os Aliados tenham se acostumado a nunca ser grosseiramente surpreso, levando a um grau de excesso de confiança que custou vidas em dezembro de 1944.

Observe que, embora a conclusão de Hitler esteja correta, isso ainda é apenas a demonstração da paranóia de Hitler. O uso da inteligência ENIGMA pelos Aliados foi tão moderado que ele não tinha base lógica para esta conclusão. Exceto no Atlântico Norte, onde a batalha foi verdadeiramente existencial para os britânicos, foi mantida como uma reserva para evitar exatamente o cenário que ocorreu em 16 de dezembro de 1944 - um ataque surpresa alemão massivo em um setor mal defendido.

No favor dos Aliados, a batalha / campanha chave seria a dos comboios da marinha mercante no Atlântico Norte durante os dias sombrios de 1941 e 1942. Os britânicos nunca perceberam que os alemães haviam quebrado os códigos da marinha mercante em meados dos anos 1930, então foi apenas com a ajuda da inteligência ENIGMA que comboios suficientes passaram para manter a Grã-Bretanha à tona por assim dizer.


Criptoanálise do Enigma

Criptoanálise do Enigma O sistema de cifragem permitiu aos Aliados ocidentais na Segunda Guerra Mundial lerem quantidades substanciais de comunicações de rádio em código Morse das potências do Eixo que haviam sido criptografadas usando máquinas Enigma. Isso rendeu inteligência militar que, junto com outras transmissões descriptografadas de rádio e tele-impressora do Eixo, recebeu o codinome Ultra. Isso foi considerado pelo Comandante Supremo Aliado ocidental Dwight D. Eisenhower como tendo sido "decisivo" para a vitória dos Aliados. [1]

As máquinas Enigma eram uma família de máquinas de criptografia portáteis com misturadores de rotor. [2] Bons procedimentos operacionais, devidamente aplicados, teriam tornado a máquina Enigma do plugboard inquebrável. [3] [4] [5] No entanto, a maioria das forças militares alemãs, serviços secretos e agências civis que usavam o Enigma empregavam procedimentos operacionais inadequados, e foram esses procedimentos inadequados que permitiram que as máquinas Enigma fossem submetidas a engenharia reversa e o cifras a serem lidas.

O Enigma equipado com uma placa de plug-in alemão se tornou o principal sistema de criptografia da Alemanha nazista. Ele foi quebrado pelo Departamento de Cifras do Estado-Maior Polonês em dezembro de 1932, com a ajuda de material de inteligência fornecido pela França obtido de um espião alemão. Um mês antes da eclosão da Segunda Guerra Mundial, em uma conferência realizada perto de Varsóvia, o Escritório de Cifras polonês compartilhou suas técnicas e tecnologia de quebra de enigma com os franceses e britânicos. Durante a invasão alemã da Polônia, o pessoal do Bureau de Cifras polonês foi evacuado via Romênia para a França, onde estabeleceram a estação de inteligência de sinais PC Bruno com apoio de instalações francesas. A cooperação bem-sucedida entre os poloneses, franceses e britânicos em Bletchley Park continuou até junho de 1940, quando a França se rendeu aos alemães.

Desde o início, o Código do Governo Britânico e a Escola Cypher (GC & ampCS) em Bletchley Park desenvolveu uma extensa capacidade criptanalítica. Inicialmente, a descriptografia era principalmente de Luftwaffe (Força Aérea Alemã) e alguns Heer (Exército alemão) mensagens, como o Kriegsmarine (Marinha alemã) empregou procedimentos muito mais seguros para usar o Enigma. Alan Turing, um matemático e lógico da Universidade de Cambridge, forneceu muito do pensamento original que levou ao projeto das máquinas de bomba criptanalítica que foram instrumentais para finalmente quebrar o Enigma naval. No entanto, o Kriegsmarine introduziu uma versão Enigma com um quarto rotor para seus U-boats, resultando em um período prolongado em que essas mensagens não podiam ser decifradas. Com a captura de chaves criptográficas relevantes e o uso de bombas muito mais rápidas da Marinha dos EUA, a leitura regular e rápida das mensagens dos submarinos foi retomada.


Bletchley e bombas # x27s

Máquina de Turing contra máquina. O modelo protótipo de seu anti-Enigma & quotbombe & quot, denominado simplesmente Victory, foi instalado na primavera de 1940.

Suas bombas transformaram Bletchley Park em uma fábrica de quebra de códigos. Já em 1943, as máquinas de Turing & # x27s estavam quebrando um total impressionante de 84.000 mensagens Enigma por mês - duas mensagens por minuto.

Turing pessoalmente quebrou a forma do Enigma que era usada pelos U-boats que atacavam os comboios mercantes do Atlântico Norte.

Foi uma contribuição crucial. Os comboios partiram da América do Norte carregados com grandes cargas de suprimentos essenciais para a Grã-Bretanha, mas os U-boats e torpedos # x27 estavam afundando tantos navios que analistas de Churchill & # x27s disseram que a Grã-Bretanha logo morreria de fome.

“A única coisa que realmente me assustou durante a guerra foi o perigo do submarino”, disse Churchill mais tarde.

Bem a tempo, Turing e seu grupo conseguiram quebrar as comunicações dos submarinos e # x27 com seus controladores na Europa. Com os submarinos revelando suas posições, os comboios poderiam evitá-los no vasto deserto do Atlântico.


Uma história revisionista da inteligência na Segunda Guerra Mundial

Prateleiras cheias de livros de história foram escritas sobre os triunfos da inteligência aliada na Segunda Guerra Mundial. O Ultra Secret. O homem que nunca existiu. Operação Mincemeat. Agente Zigag. Cruz dupla. Um homem chamado intrépido. Eu li tudo isso e muito mais. (Existem centenas.) Agora vem o jornalista e historiador britânico Max Hastings com uma visão revisionista em A guerra secreta. Com seus olhos focados nas duras realidades desse conflito que tudo consome, Hastings desmascara os mitos que inspiraram esses livros e leva seus exageros para baixo com um senso de perspectiva há muito ausente. O efeito é preocupante. Esta é a história revisionista no seu melhor. Qualquer pessoa que busque entender como a Segunda Guerra Mundial foi realmente travada deve ler este livro sem demora.

A guerra secreta: espiões, cifras e guerrilhas, 1939-1945 por Max Hastings (2016) 645 páginas ★★★★★

História revisionista: mitos desmascarados

Hastings analisa alguns dos muitos relatórios fantasiosos que surgiram ao longo dos anos sobre a espionagem britânica e americana na Segunda Guerra Mundial. Por exemplo, ele agride selvagemente a história de auto-engrandecimento de William Stevenson em Um homem chamado intrépido, chamando o livro de “extravagante”. E, como Hastings deixa claro, o trabalho de Stevenson e # 8217s coordenando a inteligência britânica nos Estados Unidos não teve praticamente nenhum impacto na guerra.

Ele é menos severo em suas referências indiretas a outros livros, mas deixa claro que os muitos títulos mais vendidos exageram a importância dos espiões que tornaram famosos. Até o lendário Alan Turing é examinado pelo microscópio: Hastings afirma que outro jovem gênio matemático que também trabalhou em Bletchley Park foi igualmente importante para decifrar o Código Enigma. Mais significativamente, a própria descoberta celebrada contribuiu menos para a vitória dos Aliados do que outros sucessos na decifração dos códigos do Eixo. (Ele cita em particular os códigos navais alemão e japonês.) & # 8220Bletchley era uma arma cada vez mais importante, & # 8221 Hastings observa, & # 8220 mas não era uma espada mágica. & # 8221

Sinais versus inteligência humana

O tema abrangente em A guerra secreta é a primazia da inteligência de sinais. Hastings afirma que avanços na decifração de códigos pelos britânicos, russos e americanos contribuíram muito mais decisivamente para o resultado bem-sucedido da guerra do que quaisquer missões empreendidas por espiões. E, exceto na Rússia de 1943 em diante, os esforços dos movimentos de resistência na Europa foram ainda menos significativos (embora tenham desempenhado um grande papel na promoção do moral popular). Há uma possível exceção, o trabalho dos agentes improvavelmente coloridos retratados em Ben McIntyre & # 8217s Double Cross: A verdadeira história dos espiões do Dia D. Mas mesmo essa história de sucesso inegável deve ser temperada pela compreensão de que a inteligência de sinais desempenhou um grande papel na configuração e no suporte da operação. Por todos os lados, um número enorme de pessoas estava empenhado em ouvir, decodificar, interpretar e relatar informações obtidas pelo rádio.

No entanto, & # 8220Um dos temas neste livro é que a guerra de inteligência de sinais, certamente em seus estágios iniciais, foi menos desequilibrada em favor dos Aliados & # 8217 do que sugere a mitologia popular. & # 8221

Quanto a inteligência secreta realmente contribuiu para o resultado da guerra & # 8217s?

Vendo o quadro geral, Hastings é cético quanto à eficácia da inteligência de qualquer tipo. Como ele observa, & # 8220Talvez um milésimo de 1 por cento do material obtido de fontes secretas por todos os beligerantes na Segunda Guerra Mundial contribuiu para mudar os resultados do campo de batalha. & # 8221 No decorrer de A guerra secreta, ele cita apenas quatro batalhas estrategicamente significativas em que a inteligência mudou a maré: a guerra do Atlântico Norte sob o mar, a vitória americana sobre os japoneses em Midway, a inesperada ofensiva russa em Kursk e o equívoco sobre o desembarque dos Aliados na Normandia, em vez de Pas de Calais.

Visto de 30.000 pés e a passagem de mais de setenta anos, & # 8220 em nenhum lugar do mundo a inteligência foi sabiamente administrada e acessada. & # 8221 Embora Stalin e Hitler fossem ambos notoriamente desdenhosos da inteligência secreta, assim como os militares japoneses, os americanos e os britânicos também não conseguiram fazer uso genuinamente eficaz das informações reveladas por seus espiões e decifradores.

Outras revelações

Talvez compreensivelmente, ao escrever sobre a inteligência aliada na guerra, autores americanos e britânicos se concentraram no trabalho do MI6, MI5, o OSS e na enorme equipe de acadêmicos em Bletchley Park. No entanto, Hastings deixa claro que a União Soviética teve muito mais sucesso em descobrir espionagem acionável do que qualquer um de seus principais Aliados ocidentais. & # 8220Algumas decepções russas, & # 8221 ele escreve, & # 8220 superam as dos britânicos e americanos. & # 8221 Hastings & # 8217 o relato de Stalin & # 8217s operações de inteligência é particularmente revelador. O mesmo ocorre com sua exploração cética da inteligência secreta alemã e japonesa. O FBI também está sob fogo: & # 8220Todos os serviços de inteligência buscam promover os interesses das facções e aumentar suas próprias realizações, mas o FBI do tempo de guerra levou essa prática a extremos maníacos. . . A incompetência do FBI & # 8217s foi surpreendente. & # 8221

Sobre o autor

Max Hastings é um proeminente jornalista, editor, historiador e autor britânico. Ele atuou como editor-chefe do Padrão Diário e The Daily Telegraph e apresentou documentários históricos na BBC.

Para mais leituras

I & # 8217ve também analisei Operação Chastise: O Ataque Mais Brilhante da RAF & # 8217s da Segunda Guerra Mundial por Max Hastings — Bomber Command & # 8217s ataque mais bem-sucedido na Alemanha nazista não foi em suas cidades.

Se você está procurando uma visão mais ampla da história humana, confira Novas perspectivas sobre a história mundial.

E você sempre pode encontrar minhas análises mais populares e as mais recentes, além de um guia para todo o site, na página inicial.


A história da icônica 1ª Divisão da Marinha ‘Casa Branca’ em Pendleton

Postado em 29 de abril de 2020 15:46:53

O edifício resistiu ao teste do tempo. Ele viu gerações de fuzileiros navais entrarem e saírem de seus salões. Ele já viu fuzileiros navais em várias guerras nas costas das ilhas do Pacífico, nas montanhas da Coreia do Norte, nas selvas do Vietnã e nos desertos do Oriente Médio. Ele serviu como o epicentro operacional e cultural da 1ª Divisão de Fuzileiros Navais - a divisão mais histórica e importante do Corpo de Fuzileiros Navais dos Estados Unidos. Ele viu sua parte na história tanto para a divisão quanto para o Corpo de exército.

O edifício foi até considerado um local histórico, ainda mantendo o estilo simples e a pintura branca associada aos edifícios da época da Segunda Guerra Mundial, que originalmente deveriam ser temporários. Poucos desse tipo ainda estão de pé em todo o país, mas ele permanece, ousado em cores e design, enquanto seus pares foram substituídos ao longo das décadas. Se você caminhar pelos corredores mofados que já foram percorridos por nomes como Chesty Puller e James Mattis, poderá ver as obras de arte - pinturas de comandantes anteriores, cenas de batalhas antigas arrancadas das páginas da história e fotos de fuzileiros navais das guerras modernas.

& # 8220É & # 8217 um edifício único, & # 8221 disse o coronel Christopher S. Dowling, ex-chefe do Estado-Maior da 1ª Divisão da Marinha. & # 8220Quando foi construído em 1942-1943, deveria durar apenas cinco, cinco anos - era isso. & # 8221

Corps do Corpo de Fuzileiros Navais dos EUA, Christopher S. Dowling.

(Foto do Corpo de Fuzileiros Navais dos EUA por Lance Cpl. Audrey M. C. Rampton)

A humanidade cria coisas que duram, ferramentas que passam por dezenas de mãos antes de se desgastarem além do uso, estruturas que permanecem fortes por décadas, séculos e até vários milênios. Existem também ocasiões em que fazemos coisas para um uso simples e fácil, onde se destinam apenas a durar curtos períodos de tempo. O edifício 1133 de Camp Pendleton, mais conhecido como & # 8220a casa branca & # 8221, era uma dessas estruturas. Atuando como sede e edifício administrativo para o conflito crescente no Pacífico, ele se expandiu para acomodar as necessidades da 3ª, 4ª e 5ª Divisões da Marinha, que também participaram da Segunda Guerra Mundial e do Teatro do Pacífico # 8217s.

& # 8220O escritório do sargento-mor & # 8217s é minha sala favorita & # 8221 disse o sargento do USMC. Major William T. Sowers, ex-sargento-mor da 1ª Divisão de Fuzileiros Navais. & # 8220A quantidade de detalhes na madeira e na lareira dá aquela sensação realmente antiga e dá um ar de museu. & # 8221

Nos primeiros anos, não tinha o apelido de & # 8220a casa branca & # 8221. Ele ficava entre muitos prédios pintados do mesmo branco sujo e barato e não era o único além de seu propósito. Com o estilo de muitos dos edifícios para garantir a segurança do comando, serviu a muitos fuzileiros navais em todo o Pacífico durante a Segunda Guerra Mundial.

O edifício do quartel-general da 1ª Divisão dos Fuzileiros Navais na Base do Corpo de Fuzileiros Navais, Camp Pendleton, Califórnia.

(Foto do Corpo de Fuzileiros Navais dos EUA pelo cabo Joseph Prado)

A estrutura cresceu a partir dos fuzileiros navais que a chamavam de casa e em 1946 foi oficialmente ordenada a construção do quartel-general da 1ª Divisão da Marinha. Isso o levaria a ser modificado décadas depois, não uma, mas duas vezes para garantir que o edifício pudesse continuar a funcionar e a apoiar os muitos fuzileiros navais que passavam por seus corredores. Embora as reformas tenham garantido que o prédio permanecesse com os tempos e a tecnologia da época, desde a fiação de telefone à internet dentro de suas paredes, sua estrutura geral e design ainda são os mesmos de quando foram construídos.

& # 8220Não foi tão icônico para nós em nossa época & # 8221 disse o general aposentado do Corpo de Fuzileiros Navais dos EUA, Matthew P. Caulfield. & # 8220Nós nunca a conhecemos como & # 8216a casa branca & # 8217. Nunca pensamos no fato de ter sido o posto de comando da divisão durante a Segunda Guerra Mundial. Simplesmente o conhecíamos como o lugar em que trabalhamos, embora às vezes o chamássemos de & # 8216a cabana & # 8217. & # 8221

Devido à época em que & # 8216a casa branca & # 8217 foi feita, muitas necessidades de desenvolvimento eram exigidas dela durante aquela época. Uma das maiores era a necessidade de resistir a um possível ataque. A invasão japonesa dos EUA era uma ameaça realista nos anos 40. Para garantir a segurança do pessoal de comando, o prédio foi feito para ser indistinguível do resto. Para os nascidos nos últimos 40 anos, o próprio conceito de um ataque militar aos EUA é simplesmente algo que não aconteceria e não poderia acontecer. Mas em 1940, quando Camp Pendleton foi oficialmente inaugurado, milhares de fuzileiros navais marcharam de San Diego para exercícios de combate contra um falso inimigo. Isso causou pânico na população civil. As pessoas inicialmente pensaram que havia ocorrido uma invasão japonesa. A presença da base & # 8217s levou até mesmo a uma queda no mercado imobiliário, um fato que é inconcebível para a maioria dos proprietários de imóveis no sul da Califórnia hoje.

O portão principal de Camp Pendleton.

A ameaça de ataque dos céus influenciou muito do que se tornaria Camp Pendleton como o conhecemos hoje. Os acampamentos na base estão espalhados por todo o acampamento & # 8217s por mais de 195 milhas quadradas, originalmente projetados para proteger a base de ser paralisada em um ataque aéreo decisivo, de acordo com Dowling. Nos sótãos da Casa Branca e em outros prédios da época, ainda há evidências da cobertura original de madeira compensada usada. A madeira prensada era usada na época por dois motivos: pranchas de madeira reais precisavam imediatamente construir e substituir conveses de navios da Marinha, e madeira prensada tinha menos probabilidade de criar detritos mortais de madeira se os prédios fossem presos por um bombardeiro japonês.

& # 8220A casa branca & # 8221 foi projetada por Myron B. Hunt, Harold C. Chambers e E. L. Ellingwood. Suas empresas cuidaram do desenvolvimento de vários edifícios em Camp Pendleton durante a década de 1940. Baseado no quartel da Marinha dos EUA B-1, que era um projeto comum para tornar o edifício indistinguível de outro edifício na base na época, tornando-o menos um alvo para bombardeiros japoneses depois de Pearl Harbor. Poucos desses quartéis ainda permanecem de pé depois de mais de 70 anos desde seu desenvolvimento. O B-1, bem como sua estrutura irmã, & # 8220a casa branca & # 8221 era apenas um projeto temporário destinado a durar durante toda a guerra. Em 1983, o congresso aprovaria o Projeto de Autorização de Construção Militar de 1983, que demoliu muitas das estruturas temporárias mais antigas da Segunda Guerra Mundial em favor de novos projetos. Algumas estruturas foram renovadas devido ao seu significado histórico. & # 8220O interior da casa branca & # 8221 foi incluído nessas reformas. O edifício passou por alterações em seu exterior, mas manteve sua forma atual com apenas algumas pequenas alterações.

Desde sua construção, muitas pessoas entraram na & # 8220a casa branca & # 8221 e muitos mais passaram por ela. É um símbolo icônico da 1ª Divisão de Fuzileiros Navais com dezenas de memoriais ao seu redor, capturando o sacrifício de cada fuzileiro naval que lutou com a Divisão durante suas muitas batalhas ao longo de nossa história. De oficiais chegando às suas portas em carros de funcionários da Ford de 1940, a 1968 Volkswagen Beatles e, ainda mais recentemente, um 2018 com o nome de sua marca e modelo. Quando alguém sai de seu veículo, eles olham para o edifício branco marcado pelo icônico diamante azul e as serpentinas de batalha que a divisão ganhou.

Edifício da sede da 1ª Divisão dos Fuzileiros Navais na Base do Corpo de Fuzileiros Navais, Camp Pendleton, Califórnia, 17 de maio de 2018.

(Foto do Corpo de Fuzileiros Navais dos EUA pelo cabo Joseph Prado)

Antigamente, apoiava todo o estado-maior de comando, mas agora grande parte do comando está espalhado por Camp Pendleton. Muitos ex-alunos do Blue Diamond já pensaram em transformá-lo em um museu, dadas as muitas peças históricas que já revestem seus corredores. Dá aquela sensação de ter entrado em um lugar marcado pela história.

& # 8220O edifício icônico do & # 8216Blue Diamond & # 8217 é a divisão & # 8221 disse Sowers. & # 8220Muitas pessoas presumem que este é o principal posto de comando da Força Expedicionária dos Fuzileiros Navais ou mesmo das Instalações do Corpo de Fuzileiros Navais do Oeste. & # 8221

Muitos dos veteranos mais velhos não estavam acostumados a lidar com os comandos da 1ª Força Expedicionária de Fuzileiros Navais, disse Sowers. Quando pensassem na & # 8220a casa branca & # 8221, pensariam no general comandante que presidia tudo o que sabiam sobre os fuzileiros navais na Costa Oeste naquela época.

Generais, majores, sargentos e cabos de lança caminharam por seus corredores nos últimos 70 anos. Alguns ainda vivem entre nós, enquanto outros deram o último sacrifício. Suas memórias e ações vivem tanto na 1ª Divisão da Marinha quanto na & # 8220a casa branca & # 8221 em si, que tem sido um monumento imutável aos fuzileiros navais da 1ª Divisão da Marinha. Não importa a idade em que alguém serviu na Divisão, todos conheceram aquele prédio de uma forma ou de outra. É um testamento tanto para a Divisão quanto para os fuzileiros navais que serviram. Nossos ideais se enraizaram em sua própria estrutura e ela se tornou um membro permanente tanto nos corações quanto nas mentes dos fuzileiros navais da 1ª Divisão de Fuzileiros Navais.

Este artigo foi publicado originalmente no Corpo de Fuzileiros Navais dos Estados Unidos. Siga @USMC no Twitter.


Kursk

A batalha de Kursk pelos alemães foi sua última chance de um ataque final para levar os exércitos soviéticos ao ponto de ruptura & # 8211, portanto, foi realmente "tudo ou nada". A operação (codinome ‘Cidadela’) tinha que prevalecer & # 8211, caso contrário, os alemães sem dúvida seriam derrotados e teriam que recuar em massa. Os soviéticos no paralelo lançaram duas operações (Operação Polkovodets Rumyantsev e Operação Kutuzov). A batalha foi uma das maiores da Segunda Guerra Mundial, conhecida como a grande batalha de tanques envolvendo mais de 8.000 tanques e dois milhões de homens. Os soviéticos, entretanto, superavam em muito os alemães.

Após um mês e 18 dias de alguns dos combates mais brutais e horríveis vistos na guerra até agora, os exércitos soviéticos & # 8211 ultrapassando os alemães em número - prevaleceram, e quando a vitória se tornou conclusiva, o precedente foi estabelecido para o restante da guerra. Agora era evidente que os exércitos soviéticos provaram ser superiores aos alemães. A percepção da derrota para os alemães foi tão grande que muitos viram apenas uma derrota para o futuro. Ideológica e fisicamente, os exércitos alemães foram destruídos.

Antes dessa batalha, sem dúvida a guerra estava equilibrada, com um exército atacando e o outro contra-atacando e assim por diante. A menor mudança tática poderia ter lançado a guerra para qualquer um dos lados. Depois de Kursk, a guerra estava indo apenas em uma direção e em um resultado - a vitória soviética.

Sobre o autor

Meu nome é David J. Armstrong (BA Hons) e sou um historiador militar britânico de Buckinghamshire. Eu me formei na universidade com um diploma em Guerra e Conflitos em 2014. Desde então, tenho escrito meu primeiro livro de não ficção sobre o 'Dia D', juntamente com outras peças curtas encontradas no meu blog. Eu estarei freqüentando a universidade novamente em 2016 e estudando rumo ao meu mestrado em História Militar, com a esperança de continuar no meu PhD no mesmo assunto depois disso.

Amo pesquisar, aprender e escrever sobre história. Meus assuntos especializados e minhas paixões reais são as guerras do século 20, incluindo a Primeira Guerra Mundial e a Segunda Guerra Mundial. Você pode me encontrar como parte de várias associações históricas, como a Historical Writers Association, e também pode me encontrar no Twitter como @djahistory.

No meu blog, você encontrará uma coleção de trabalhos - coisas nas quais estou trabalhando (como artigos e resenhas, trabalho voluntário histórico e artigos para sites e revistas online), coisas que fiz no passado e coisas que geralmente me interessam dentro da história (incluindo locais históricos e museus que visito, livros que leio e artigos que me deixam intrigado).


Rescaldo

A máquina Enigma foi, ao mesmo tempo, a maior força e também a maior fraqueza dos nazistas. Por um longo tempo durante a guerra, eles foram capazes de ocultar completamente suas comunicações dos Aliados. Assim que os Aliados decifraram o código, no entanto, a máquina tornou-se um risco, pois, devido à sua arrogância, os nazistas não estavam dispostos a enfrentar o fato de que seu código era falível. Isso talvez possa ser visto por esta troca entre dois prisioneiros de guerra alemães, gravada por interrogadores britânicos:


Operador de rádio: Muitas vezes deciframos o código britânico, durante a campanha da Noruega, por exemplo, mas eles nunca decifrarão o código que tínhamos na Marinha. É absolutamente impossível quebrar.

Comando Abwehr: Todo mundo fala isso de seu próprio código.

Operador de rádio: O quê! Eles não conseguem decifrá-lo.

Comando Abwehr: Há apenas um método que não pode ser decifrado e mesmo que pode ser decifrado por matemáticos especialistas, acho que eles podem quebrar um código no curso de dois anos ...

Operador de rádio: Não, eles não conseguem decifrá-lo.

Comando Abwehr: Oh, essa é apenas uma daquelas ideias idiotas que as pessoas têm.

Depois que o código foi quebrado, os nazistas não quiseram ver as evidências disso como uma violação do código. Em vez disso, presumiram que os britânicos simplesmente tinham espiões excepcionais que vazavam informações. Assim, eles concentraram seus esforços em encontrar esses espiões, em vez de adaptar seu código ainda mais (Hofstadter 2).


Por causa do vasto número de combinações de código possíveis da Enigma, a quebra do código exigia colaboração entre os aliados. A maioria dos esforços foi feita por matemáticos britânicos e poloneses em Bletchley Park, na Inglaterra, sob o codinome Projeto ULTRA. Esses matemáticos usaram tanto tecnologia de máquina de alta velocidade quanto testes manuais para decifrar o código. No início da década de 1940, esses matemáticos já podiam decifrar o código, no entanto, a princípio levaria semanas para decifrar uma única mensagem, tarde demais para ajudar estrategicamente. Em 1943, eles seriam capazes de decodificar uma mensagem em minutos e, finalmente, seriam capazes de usar as informações nela contidas. Este é essencialmente o momento em que a eficácia da máquina Enigma foi encerrada. E, no final, a insistência nazista em manter o uso do Enigma pode ter sido o que lhes custou a guerra.


Como Ratcliff postula, “Enigma… demonstra como uma nova tecnologia pode passar rapidamente de surpreendentemente revolucionária a tão familiar que seus operadores caem na complacência” (12).


ARTIGOS RELACIONADOS

“Temos o dever de lembrar às pessoas o que os criptologistas poloneses fizeram”, disse ele ao Daily Telegraph.

O governante disse que, em reconhecimento aos esforços do trio, a câmara alta do parlamento polaco aprovou uma resolução em sua homenagem para 'restaurar a justiça'.

O parlamento da Polônia lançou uma campanha para que os criptógrafos poloneses sejam creditados por ajudar a decifrar o código Enigma dos nazistas. Acima, Bletchley Park, Buckinghamshire, onde a descoberta teria encurtado a guerra em dois anos

A resolução diz: 'Tanto na literatura popular quanto nas informações oficiais, o público foi informado de que a violação dos códigos da Enigma se devia ao trabalho dos serviços de inteligência britânicos e à completa omissão do trabalho dos cientistas poloneses'.

Os alemães, que usavam a tecnologia desde o final da década de 1920, acreditavam que os códigos eram impossíveis de decifrar.

Usando um complicado sistema de rotores, a máquina codificava as mensagens antes de enviá-las via código Morse para outra máquina.

Se a máquina receptora tivesse sido programada com as mesmas configurações - uma de 158 milhões de milhões de combinações - a mensagem seria decifrada.

No entanto, a equipe de criptologistas, linguistas, cientistas e analistas de dados em Bletchley, em Buckinghamshire, liderada pelo londrino Turing, conseguiu quebrá-lo.

Negligenciado: Kate Winslet estrelou o filme de produção britânica de 2001, Enigma, que faz pouca menção à contribuição dos poloneses

No auge, a equipe estava decifrando 6.000 mensagens criptografadas da Enigma alemã todos os dias - com base nos princípios estabelecidos por Rejewski, Rozycki e Zygalski.

Jan Rulewski, um senador do partido da Plataforma Cívica do governo, disse: 'Esta resolução restaura a justiça. Não apenas os aliados ocidentais marginalizaram as conquistas dos criptógrafos poloneses, mas os soviéticos fizeram o mesmo.

'Eles ficaram em silêncio sobre a contribuição polonesa para salvar as vidas de centenas de milhares de soldados que lutam em todas as frentes.'

O filme Enigma (feito em 2001), estrelado por Kate Winslet e ambientado em Bletchley, também perturbou os poloneses - não apenas minimiza sua contribuição, mas também, o único polonês no filme é um traidor.

O ressentimento aumenta o sentimento geral no país de que sua contribuição para a vitória dos Aliados foi subestimada.

As tropas polonesas lutaram no Norte da África, Itália e Normandia, e participaram da Batalha por Berlim.

Na Batalha da Grã-Bretanha, os pilotos poloneses tiveram as maiores taxas de abate.

Mesmo assim, as tropas polonesas - ainda sob o comando do governo independente da Polônia no exílio - foram proibidas de participar das comemorações oficiais do Dia do VE devido ao desejo da Grã-Bretanha de apaziguar Stalin.

Trabalhando: Wrens em Bletchley Park usou princípios desenvolvidos pelos poloneses para continuar a decifrar o Enigma


Seminário de Grupo de Segurança

Ross Anderson: É um grande prazer apresentar o palestrante de hoje, Sir Harry Hinsley, que realmente trabalhou em Bletchley de 1939 a 1946 e depois voltou para Cambridge e se tornou Professor de História das Relações Internacionais e Mestre do St John's College. Ele também é o historiador oficial da Inteligência Britânica na Segunda Guerra Mundial e vai nos falar hoje sobre o Ultra.

Sir Harry: Como você deve ter ouvido, fui convidado a falar sobre o Ultra e devo dizer algo sobre os dois lados dele, ou seja, sobre a criptoanálise e, por outro lado, sobre o uso do produto - é claro que Ultra foi o nome dado ao produtos.

E devo começar avisando-o, portanto, que não sou um especialista matemático ou técnico. Tive o privilégio de ser assistente dos matemáticos liderados por Max Newman e Alan Turing, mas nunca aprendi a dominar ou mesmo aproximar-me do domínio de sua arte.

Ultra, é claro, era o produto de cifras. Ele foi usado apenas para o produto da medição das cifras mais importantes e, desde a primavera de 1941 em Bletchley, quebramos a maioria das cifras em uma extensão sem precedentes e com uma falta de atraso sem precedentes. E houve duas razões para esse sucesso.

Em primeiro lugar, sozinho entre os governos daqueles anos, o governo britânico, já na década de 1920, concentrou todo o seu esforço criptanalítico em um lugar que chamou de Government Code and Cipher School. Em segundo lugar, em Bletchley, o quadro de funcionários aumentou de cerca de 120 em 1939 para cerca de 7.000 no início de 1944.

É claro que essa equipe não era totalmente criptanalítica, consistia também em uma quantidade imensa de equipe usada, por exemplo, para sinalizar os produtos para comandos no resto da Inglaterra ou no exterior. And so it wasn't entirely cryptanalytical staff - it was a very mixed staff compared with pre-war.

In addition, those men and women, recruited mainly from universities, developed methods and machinery of a sophistication hitherto undreamt of, including as you all know the first operational electronic computer which was called Colossus.

Without those advances, at least the most difficult of the ciphers, which were (although I will make some qualifying remark about this in a minute) those based on the German Enigma and those still more complex systems which Germany introduced for ciphering non-morse transmissions, would have been for all practical purposes invulnerable.

Now the value of the resulting Ultra was all the greater because the enemy states - Germany, Italy and Japan - remained unaware of the British successes.

The main reason for that was that they didn't allow for that sophistication of method and machinery which the British brought to the attack on their ciphers. They didn't allow for that when they constructed their ciphers.

Nothing very surprising in that. As I have said, the methods and machinery developed were of a sophistication hitherto unthought of.

But it still remains necessary to say that, despite that sophistication, the German belief that the ciphers would remain invulnerable was almost right, almost correct.

The ciphers nearly escaped effective exploitation.

In the case of the Enigma (which was an electro-mechanical machine) the first solutions were made by hand by mathematicians relying on German operators' errors. The German airforce was always more untidy in its signalling than the other users of the Enigma.

And for that purpose (although you will understand it better than I do) they used perforated sheets and exploited these mistakes made by German operators.

For other keys than the airforce, especially those of the army and the navy, and especially for the regular and speedy solution of those keys, it was necessary to develop an effective answering cryptanalytical machine.

That was the key in the end to the prompt decrypting of the machine cyphers.

It was a machine called The Bombe - a name originally given to it by the Poles who invented an early prototype in the 1930's. The Bombe developed in Bletchley by Turing and Welshman and Babbage - all luminaries of the Cambridge scene - was helped a little by the Polish machine, but it was infinitely more powerful, about fifteen times more powerful than the Polish machine. And it was because of the greater difficulties of dealing with the Enigma that it had to be that powerful.

But it wasn't enough to have that machinery developed. Except in the case of the airforce keys, we had to capture them before the machinery - even this Bombe machinery - could break into them.

And that is where people like myself who were non-mathematical came into the story. It was because I was in close touch with Turing, for example, that I was fully aware of what he had to have before the machine which he had developed could exercise its powers.

And I was able to arrange - with other people of course, including the navy - how to capture that. I stress that because, both in the case of the navy and of the army, and at dates which are later than we realise (I will give you the dates later), we needed in addition to this superb mathematics, which was assisted of course by superb Post Office engineering, we needed also these side assets - essentially captured material.

That was the Enigma. Now with the non-morse machine which we called Fish, the first successes were again obtained by hand methods. And those hand methods by mathematicians again exploited German operators' errors. In fact, the actual understanding of the machine theoretically (in other words as opposed to breaking it every day), the actual understanding of how it worked was obtained because the Germans went through a long series of experiments with it on the air before they brought it into operational use.

And it was these experimental transmissions which primarily were the errors which gave the entree.

But it was obvious that any regular or at all reasonably speedy decryption would be impossible if again machine methods were not developed. In particular that they would be impossible without machines because the different Fish ciphers proliferated, just like the different Enigma keys proliferated, and you were dealing with a lot of ciphers concurrently.

And so in this case, as you know, the machine was developed which came to be called Colossus.

It was of course a much more complex - it wasn't a mere electronic electro-mechanical thing - it was the first computer. It had to be like that in proportion to the fact that the Fish was far more complex than the Enigma.

Now it will be clear from what I have said that the problem wasn't merely to master the machines. The Germans recognised when they were constructing (in their view) an invulnerable set of machines, that of course in wartime they would be open to capture and therefore locally and temporarily they will be read.

But they also felt that the mere local (by which I mean reading one key instead of another key) and temporary reading (in other words that would complete your fundamental knowledge of the machine) wouldn't help you to read it regularly and daily. And they were right, without this machinery that would have been impossible.

And in particular it would be impossible because each of the Enigma and the Fish were used by the Germans as the basis not merely for one cipher each, not merely one Enigma and one Fish, but as the basis for a wide range of different ciphers, each cipher having its different key.

At one time the Germans were operating concurrently about fifty Enigmas, some in the army, some in the airforce, some in the navy, some in the railways, some in the secret service. And so you were faced not merely with understanding the machine and with breaking a key regularly, but with breaking fifty sometimes regularly at once, or as many of them as you could without delay.

And Fish similarly rose from just one link, one cipher, one key to about 22 cipher links, all quite separate except they were using the same machine. And remember that each of them - the Enigma daily and the Fish at varying interludes, usually every few days - changed the keys.

So you are on constant alert - every day you had to start again at midnight, and you had to start on perhaps 30 Enigmas or 5 Fishes and so you could see the mere load put it beyond any manual solution.

That was one reason, that in spite of their confidence which was not far from being fully justified, that was one reason why the German confidence was proved to be unfounded. The other was (perhaps it is no less important) the fact that steps were taken to avoid arousing enemy suspicion.

The British imposed strict secrecy of course on the Ultra production process. Strict regulations about its distribution - who should be indoctrinated - strict regulations against carelessness by users when using it.

Those regulations were pretty effective. There were from time to time cases in the war where the Germans did sufficiently suspect to have an enquiry. There were cases when the Italians suspected and advised the Germans to have an enquiry.

I ought to say that everything I have been saying about the complex nature of the attack on the ciphers hardly applied to the Italian ciphers - and this is where I am going to bring my ironical remark in about ciphers which will interest you people as machinery experts.

The Italians only ran one machine and it was a baby really compared with the Enigma. It was a machine built by a firm called Hagelin (we called it C-38). The American armed forces used it occasionally, but it was easily broken. We broke it. It didn't come into use until the beginning of '41 and we broke it by June '41.

It was a very valuable cipher for shipping in relation to North African operations but it wasn't a cryptanalytical problem of the kind I have been describing in the case of the German ciphers.

Ironically the Italians, except for that one cipher and also for one they used for their diplomats, didn't use machines. They used book ciphers, and ironically we couldn't read the Italian book ciphers for the army, the navy and the airforce after they brought new ones in between June and November 1940 preparatory to or as a consequence of their own entry into the war.

Book ciphers proved to be invulnerable when the machinery proved not to be invulnerable!

And as I say the Italians occasionally, who rather looked down on machine ciphers, warned the Germans that they thought that there was evidence that the way the allies behaved suggested that maybe they were reading the German ciphers. And the Germans said 'Pooh, pooh, we are alright!' Apart from occasional suspicions, those precautions I described, as used by the Allies, worked.

They were wholly justifiable ones. Any confirmation reaching the Germans that this whiff of suspicion that this system that they had constructed wasn't safe, would have led to not easy but not impossible steps to render it safe.

But of course the precautions complicated the task of establishing the value that Ultra had in the war.

Contemporary reports and the memoirs and histories that have been published before the records about Ultra became available, of course allow for, incorporate, the contribution Ultra made to decisions and the course of events, but they don't acknowledge it. Because either the writers of the reports and the memoirs didn't know about it, or they were not able to mention it.

So that historians now have to identify that contribution from the written records about the war and it is a straightforward job to do that now that Ultra is available. You can see - we know what Ultra went to what commands, we know what time it arrived, we know what other intelligence they had at the time the Ultra arrived, we know what decisions and orders followed from its arrival, and frequently we have discussions on record about what they thought about what they ought to do about it before they reached their decisions.

It is not enough to establish accurately the availability of the Ultra and to reach reasonable conclusions about its influence on British and American assessments and decisions. You have also got to consider the consequences of those assessments and decisions on the war.

Let me give an example of the distinction. Once you have identified the Ultra (which you now can from the decrypts in the Public Record Office) you can see pretty clearly (if you have also got the record of the war) that Ultra was the main reason why the British were able to reduce the depredations of the U- Boats in the Atlantic in the second half of 1941.

But what was the value of that effect in the North Atlantic in that second half of 1941 on the course of the war? What was the consequence of that use of Ultra on the course of the war? And those effects too are already incorporated into the record, which shows that the U-Boats were defeated in the North Atlantic in the second half of 1941.

Of course in order to assess the true significance of Ultra we have got to assume that it didn't exist in the North Atlantic at that time. We have got to strip it out of the record in order to get its true significance into focus.

This is what historians call counter-factual history. To calculate something assuming that some factors in it didn't exist. And I am sure it is a process well known to mathematicians and other people like yourselves.

But it is still the case that there is a great deal of danger in using counter-factual history unless you use it very carefully. For example it is very common among historians to use counter-factual history either from a desire to shock or because the user in question hasn't got any judgement. And you have therefore got to use it in relation to the possibilities that were practically available in the circumstances that you are considering.

There is no danger whatever in reconstructing the course of the war on the assumption that Ultra hadn't existed.

As I have said the story of its acquisition is of near legendary, even science fiction proportions, because it might so easily not have taken place. You are not making a huge assumption when you start playing with the record of the war on the basis that it hadn't been solved, it hadn't been obtained.

It was by no means fortuitous or miraculous. It was the consequence of forces deliberately brought together to solve it. But it was far from being inevitable that the forces would succeed. The proposition that we might have had to fight the war without Ultra is a reasonable and necessary element in the assessment of its true significance.

On the other hand if you apply counter-factual history and use this proposition that Ultra might not have existed, you are undertaking a pretty bold enterprise in hypothesis and speculation and you must control that exercise by a constant reference to the straightforward facts about what Ultra actually did do.

If you apply that check, then I think we can draw two pretty sound conclusions. First of all, though we did obtain it in such amounts, amounts rising to 2,000 of those Italian Hagelin decrypts a day at the peak of the Mediterranean War and to 30,000 a month rising to 90,000 a month of Enigma and Fish decrypts combined - that is a very big number of decrypts. It is still the case that those volumes and the speed with which they were got out were not fully established until the second half of 1941.

Up 'till June '41 the successes were confined to decrypts of the German airforce Enigma and some of the Italian book ciphers which were quite readable before Italy came into the war and for a month or two afterwards.

Those helped to produce isolated allied successes like the Battle of Matapan when we defeated the Italian fleet, and wouldn't have done so but for a few Enigma and Italian signals which gave enough warning to the British Alexandria fleet.

The distances in the Mediterranean are such that unless you have got some notice you can't cover the thousand miles or the seven hundred and fifty miles.

So Matapan was one success. The sinking of the Bismark was another. Again I am speaking of the period before June '41. She was sunk in May '41 just before the turn. The defeat of the Italians in East Africa and in North Africa. Those were Allied successes, but they were slightly isolated successes.

Again in the same period Ultra did something to mitigate British disasters. It greatly assisted the British forces that were sent to Greece, to retreat without serious loss when it become obvious that they couldn't hold a line against the scale of the German invasion.

It gave us - here was another disaster - all the information required to destroy the German attack on Crete. We didn't destroy the attack but we made it an extremely damaging exercise for the Germans, which was done because the Ultra signals were so complete.

Some people think we should have prevented or destroyed the invasion - an air landing invasion. In fact Bletchley Park felt very strongly for the first time in the war that its product had not been used properly in the case of the Crete invasion. I think possibly that we were wrong now that we can see the evidence in more detail, but at least it helped to make it a disastrous operation for the Germans even though they actually got Crete as a consequence.

And so in all that story you can see that the British survived the war with little benefit from Intelligence until the Germans invaded Soviet Russia. And since Soviet Russia survived the German invasion, and that invasion was followed by the entry of the United States in December '41, we can safely conclude that Germany was going to be defeated in the long run, even if the enormous expansion of Ultra from the summer of 1941 had not from that date given the Allies this massive superiority in Intelligence which they retained until the end of the war.

They were hardly ever rivalled by Axis success in reading our ciphers. There were two major exceptions to the lack of success by the Axis against Allied ciphers. One was that they did have some success in reading a British naval cipher which was for a longish time also shared with the American navy in relation to convoy escorting.

They were successful in reading that for a long period from 1940 to the end of '42. And the other was that they didn't exactly capture but they managed to extract of copy of the cipher that was being used by the American Military Attache in Cairo for a period when Rommel was at his most dangerous. And from that too the Germans obtained some great advantage.

But generally speaking, except possibly in relation to the convoy cipher, there was never any great cryptanalytical rivalry. The Germans were completely outclassed in terms of Ultra. The Italians also made very little progress against any important allied cipher.

In June 1941 however, (we survived 'till then with very little value from the Ultra), the end of the war still four years away. And that is such a length of time that we might be tempted to jump to the other conclusion and say that far from producing by itself on its own the defeat of the Axis, it made only a marginal contribution to it.

Here we are, we start getting this Ultra coming onto stream in June '41 as opposed to the slight trickle before that date, and yet you have still got four years of war. How can it have made much difference?

But that second conclusion can I think be as firmly dismissed as the one I have been discussing about how Ultra didn't really win the war.

The second real conclusion that stands out is that Ultra was decisive in shortening the war from the time, beginning in the summer of 1941, the cryptanalytical successes were extended from the German airforce Enigma keys to the Enigmas used by the navy and the army and the secret service, to the non-morse ciphers of the German High Command which came on stream in mid 1941, and to a new Italian machine cipher, the one I have mentioned which also was brought into force beginning of '41 and broken in the summer of '41. And to the ciphers of the Italian and German and especially Japanese Embassies.

The Japanese Embassies in Europe were in the second half of the war to prove of immense Intelligence value because they were repeating back to Tokyo their versions of German assessments and their knowledge of German intentions. They were almost as valuable on some subjects (like for example the Normandy Landings) as were the direct Ultra from the German horse's mouth.

From the moment we began that expansion you can see that the influence is continuous. I have spoken of the amount of Ultra there was. The lack of delay, the fact that they were obtained with very little delay was equally important. After all, one of the crucial characteristics of Intelligence is that to be useful it must be quick.

In the case of the Enigmas we didn't exactly reach a position in which the new keys, having come into force at midnight, were broken by breakfast, but of, shall we say, twenty, twenty five Enigmas running concurrently (the number varied according to different stages of the war), we would be reading twenty to twenty five at most times. Of that twenty to twenty five the ones to which highest priority was given on the limited number of Bombes available would be out by breakfast. Which meant that the whole of the rest of that 24 hours' signals from the moment you broke the key for the day, the setting for the day, would be read instantaneously, as soon as the message was intercepted it would be decrypted.

Fish was a bit slower. It didn't change daily like the Enigma. It varied, on different links it changed with different frequency. The average was that it changed about once every five or six days - the setting of the keys changed every five or six days.

Again the number we read varied from time to time but from the end of '42 when Fish on the German side got going strongly, we were generally reading four or five Fish links at any one time.

Generally we were reading them about seven, six, five days late - after their transmission. That didn't matter with Fish (at least it didn't matter so much as it would have done with Enigma) because, whereas the Enigma like that Italian machine was used for what you might call operational purposes below army level for something that was happening tomorrow or happening today, Fish was reserved for communications between the highest commands of the German Armed Forces. Between Berlin and the army groups or the armies. And then never lower than armies. It was a system that increasingly replaced the landline transmissions between Berlin and Kesselring in Rome and Von Rundstedt who was commander in the west in Paris by 1943.

They were on landlines normally but gradually with Fish being perfected as they thought and with landlines being damaged by bombing they put more onto the air.

So Fish was carrying Intelligence of a character that didn't really depend for its value on immediacy. It would carry long term estimates, or it would carry prolonged discussions between German Headquarters on the Russian Front or in Italy and Berlin about what was the best thing to do next. So you didn't have the immediacy requirement there as you did with the Enigma.

Speaking on the whole then we can see the fact that we were getting Ultra in the amounts I spoke of and with the speed that I emphasised as being a very important characteristic of valuable Intelligence. It was no use having Enigma a week late, and it wouldn't be much use having Fish more than a month late.

If you had that amount of decrypts with that small amount of delay, it would, I think, on the face of it, be surprising if Ultra hadn't contributed to the very considerable shortening of the war, given the fact that on the other side the enemy is blind and his Intelligence is increasingly deteriorating because of the Allied possession of the superiority in Intelligence.

I will give you an example of that. We read all the Enigma signals of the German Abwehr which meant that we captured every spy that arrived in the United Kingdom by having advance knowledge of his arrival. Which meant that we could turn such as we needed and use them to send messages we wanted the Abwehr to receive, and monitor the reception and the reaction of the Abwehr. All that signal Intelligence underlay the effective use of what was called the Doublecross Operation for the purposes both of stopping German reception of Intelligence (other than false Intelligence) and also of creating deception by sending them false Intelligence.

So given that they were so blind and we were getting this increasing amount with less and less delay, it would be surprising if it hadn't, from the middle of '41, contributed pretty appreciably to the difficulties of the enemy and to the accurate appreciations of the Allies.

Now the question remains how much did it shorten the war, leaving aside the contribution made to the campaigns in the Far East on which the necessary work hasn't been done yet. My own conclusion is that it shortened the war by not less that two years and probably by four years - that is the war in the Atlantic, the Mediterranean and Europe.

The detailed answer for those theatres begins in the Mediterranean. There, in the autumn of 1941 against Rommel it turned almost certain defeat into a stalemate. If not then, then certainly in the summer of 1941 after Rommel had returned to the Egyptian frontier, it made a decisive contribution to keeping him out of Egypt between his victory at the Battle of Gazala in 1942 and the British getting ready for their own victory at El Alamein.

It did this chiefly by killing off his seaborne supplies. Both the Italian machine cipher and the airforce Enigma and a bit of naval Enigma contributed decisively to starving Rommel of fuel and replacement hardware and ammunition.

Without that, the commander of our own forces at the time, General Auchinleck, concluded that Rommel would have got through to Egypt.

As you know at that time the Allies themselves were landing in North West Africa. If they had lost Egypt they might have abandoned the operation against North West Africa, especially as they would also have lost Malta if Egypt went, and decided to alter their strategy (we have to allow for this possibility) and go back and concentrate on the North Sea and the direct Second Front.

Now if they had stayed in the Mediterranean it would have taken them a least a year longer than it actually took them from Tunis and from the Western Desert to complete the conquest of North Africa and open the Mediterranean. That was successfully achieved in May '43.

It wouldn't have been achieved in less than a year beyond that, if we had gone on in spite of the loss of Egypt trying to do it. It wouldn't have been achieved in time to do the Normandy landings in 1944.

If they had abandoned the idea of re-conquering North Africa, the most probable course would have been in fact what the Americans had always wanted to do, to do the cross Channel invasion more quickly than in fact occurred. It in fact occurred in June '44. They would have turned back and done that straight away, that was their obvious alternative.

What would have been the prospect for that undertaking if Ultra hadn't become available against the U-Boats in June 1941 and radically reduced their successes against the convoys.

We know that in that second half of 1941 their shipping successes were cut back to 120,000 tons a month average. That has to be compared not with the monthly average of 280,000 tons a months in the four months before June '41 but with the sinkings they would have achieved with their greater number of U-Boats.

It has been calculated that the Ultra saved about one and half million tons in September, October, November and December '41.

And even if Britain's essential imports had not without that reduction been reduced to a dangerously low level, the intermission that provided was invaluable in enabling the British to build up reserves in merchant shipping and develop anti-submarine defences.

So that when the U-Boats returned to the Atlantic after their first defeat (they did that in the autumn of 1942), they had been delayed in making a decisive thrust for more than a year. Now when they returned they had been supplied with an advanced Enigma, one that instead of using three wheels concurrently used four wheels, which as you can see noticeably increased the mathematical difficulties of solving the key.

In fact Bletchley couldn't solve it from February to December 1942. Mercifully for us (though not for the Americans) most of the U-Boats were on the Atlantic American coast at that time, but as they came back to the North Atlantic convoys they were still using this cipher and they brought about another crisis in the Atlantic.

It again was the Ultra which brought them under control. The figures of sinkings of Allied shipping reached the highest in the war in March '43. They had been brought down by May '43 to lower proportions than ever before in the war as a result of this return of Ultra to the scene.

And so you can see that the problem of undertaking the Normandy landings if those two defeats and controls of the U-Boats hadn't occurred would have been very pronounced.

Then there was the contribution of Enigma to the Normandy Landings themselves (I can't go into detail and will answer questions if you need). I think it is no exaggeration to say that even if the U-Boats had prevented it from being attempted only until '45, we would have found it an infinitely more difficult operation to do than in 1944. The Germans would have completed the Atlantic defences, they would be bombarding Britain with 'V' weapons on a massive scale, all of which was in the event cut off by the '44 Landings. And they would have had a much bigger Panzer Army to deal with the problems.

My own calculation is we wouldn't in fact have been able to do the Normandy Landings, even if we had left the Mediterranean aside, until at the earliest 1946, probably a bit later. It would have then taken much longer to break through in France and Germany than it did in fact take, which was a year from '44. And altogether therefore the war would have been something like two years longer, perhaps three years longer, possibly four years longer than it was.

I am sorry I have exceeded my length of time but I hope you will forgive me, and I will do what I can to answer questions.

Q. Would we have won the war without Ultra?

My own view is that given that the Soviets survived the German attack and the Americans came in as they did, the combined forces of Russia, America and the British would eventually have won the war. The long term relative strengths of Germany and those three counties were such that Germany was bound to loose in the end. But how lengthily and with what damage and destruction we should have succeeded I don't know. I think we would have won but it would have been a long and much more brutal and destructive war.

Q. Was Bletchley involved at all in cryptanalysis of the Russian theatre?

We read a large amount of German signals from the Russian front, but no work was done against Soviet signals after Germany invaded Russia, on account of the high priority given to Axis signals. On the other hand, co-operation with the Soviets was never as close as it was with the USA.

Of course when the Americans came into the war in December '41 we had already begun some development of a cryptanalytical partnership with them, and when they came into the war that partnership became almost so complete as to constitute a single joint cryptanalytical effort. Of course that effort involved division of labour and the division of labour is much directed by the interception facilities. For example, except for the Atlantic traffic the American coast couldn't intercept European, German and Italian signals. That was all being intercepted in the UK. Obvious solution - UK concentrates on decrypting, on cryptanalysis against German and Italian. America which can intercept the Pacific from the Pacific and also has headquarters in Brisbane and various places in the Pacific - America concentrates of working on the Japanese.

But there are overlaps. For example we have a cryptanalytical annexe at Bletchley, we have it in Singapore, it moved to Hong Kong, it moved to Ceylon, and from there it pitches in its bit by serving the decrypts direct to the American Headquarters. Similarly because the U-Boat traffic can be heard both in America and in Britain, the two sides - Bletchley and the American Navy - swopped keys. They have got a direct line. They say 'we will take 4th June, you take tomorrow 5th June,' and so they split the keys and swopped solutions. So there was an almost total amalgamation of resources and a logical division of labour.

Q. Is it not the case that the arrival of the atom bomb in 1945 would have bought a quicker solution?

This is a problem because strict, sensible, proper counter-factual history can't really take into account something like that. It is speculation. But of course if my scenario is right and the war was still struggling on and we had the bomb which presumably we would still have had, the problem of whether to drop it on Germany would have arisen. And in some respects the dropping of it on Germany would be more justified than the dropping of it on Japan because Japan was visibly on her knees when we dropped it on her, but in my scenario Germany would have been far from on her knees. So yes the prospects of it being dropped as the solution are quite high. I would mention it in a speculative scenario.

Q. How closely did Bletchley work with the Russians on decryption?

It couldn't be as close as the collaboration I have described with the Americans for a variety of reasons. One is of course that there just hadn't been the close relationship between the two countries that existed historically between the British and the Americans. The other was that when we actually broke the ciphers - Enigma in the first instance, but Fish later - that were relevant to the Eastern Front, they were coming in to us at a time when it was uncertain whether Russia would survive. And then later on when Russia had survived and we were reading more ciphers both Fish and Enigma from the Eastern Front, there was the problem that we knew from the Enigma that the Germans were reading Russian ciphers, so that if they had too much Enigma intelligence in their ciphers you see the security risk was extremely high. Then fourthly the Russians were not collaborative. They wanted any intelligence we supplied but they wouldn't give any in return. Not that they had much Sigint, but they had a lot of other Intelligence.

The answer to your question is with all those difficulties we couldn't have so close a collaboration with the Russians as we had with Washington, but we started sending them a summary of signal intelligence a week after they were attacked by the Germans in '41. We sent it via the British Military Mission in Moscow where there were people to hand it over to the Russian General Staff.

We had to have a cover for it, had to explain to them that this is the horse's mouth but it is coming to us (this is the kind of cover we used) it is coming to us from very high ranking German officers who are slipping the news to us through Berne or somewhere like that, and we are getting it quickly because we have got pretty direct connections with Switzerland.

A steady stream of information about German intentions and dispositions - Airforce and Army on the Eastern Front - were sent to them. They were interrupted from time to time when the Russians were being particularly beastly. For example at the top of Russia, Murmansk at the Kola Inlet where all the convoys taking arms to Russia and supplies were going, we had to keep seamen, sailors, both to man the Allied facilities, unloading facilities - of course the Russians were there too but we had to keep some British sailors there. And then we persuaded the Russians to let us have an Intercept station there because half of the traffic around the top of the North Cape was difficult to intercept even in Northern Scotland.

And of course we covered the risk that they would suspect that we were reading Enigma or that they would do more than suspect that, by saying that the value of the traffic to us was that it enabled us, by traffic analysis, to judge the German reactions to the movements of the convoys. So we had this little intercept station and then the Russians locked them all up because they thought we were spying on them, so you had all sorts of little rows with them like that. From time to time when it wasn't vital we did say if you don't behave better than this we wont send you your daily summary. And we stopped it for a short time, then we started again. But it had to be of that character - the collaboration.

Q. Is there scope for counter-factual historians studying the siege of Leningrad - if they had had access to the Ultra information that you could have given them.

Again you have to bear in mind that there were problems. For example, one of the areas in which we found it extremely difficult to intercept German signals because of radio conditions or atmosphere conditions or whatever it is, was the North Cape and the other was the Leningrad area. It was very difficult to intercept from the Leningrad area because whatever frequency they were using relative to the distances and the ionosphere we never could cover the Leningrad area properly. Caucaucus on the other hand, Central Front, we could hear then as clear as a bell.

Q. If the collaboration had been as close as with the Americans . . .

It would have been an advantage if it had been as close as with the Americans, it is quite true. But on the other hand the risks which I briefly portrayed were quite considerable. And we did our best to make sure that they knew about all the important forthcoming development. Don't forget they had very good intelligence of their own, not primarily Sigint but they had very good air reconnaissance and air superiority after a certain time, and they had an enormous espionage system behind the German lines. So they weren't without information. But we did do our best to make sure that they got crucial early notice whenever we got it ourselves.

It was a big dilemma and one that was fought about. Churchill wanted to risk it and let them have more. Naturally the Ultra authorities didn't want to risk it because everything hangs on it you see, so there was a tussle all the time about how much to send.

Q. The was a programme recently on Kursk - one might say that a Russian counter-factual historian would say that if we didn't have the Ultra which we got in various ways, then we wouldn't have been able to win the battle of Kursk and Hitler would have been able to carve up Russia. This is perhaps another case . . .

Another case. Stalingrad of course is another one. Those two battles were crucial, especially Stalingrad. Again it wasn't only through us they were getting . . . we did give them the central facts in advance of Kursk. But as we now know, we didn't know at the time, the one single Russian agent in Bletchley was at that time (just that short period of time before and after Kursk in '43) actually giving them decrypts through the Russian Embassy in London. So all sorts of complications about the story. He didn't know that they were getting the supply from London officially, and we didn't know that he was sending the decrypts unofficially. Quite a complex problem!

Q. Did they never figure out that this was coming from decrypts?

We are never quite clear. Certainly when this man at Bletchley who only surfaced after the war - the secret about him only surfaced after the war - they knew that what they were getting from him was decrypts. They must then have known that our summaries were decrypts. But that didn't alter our practice because we didn't know that he was sending them the decrypts.

Q. How was the Ultra Information disguised so that the Germans couldn't work out that you were decrypting them?

How did we disguise what we had got you mean?

Q. How did you disguise, for example, that a particular submarine was going through a particular area? How could you disguise it so that it wasn't obvious that you'd intercepted it?

Let me give you an example of how we took the precautions, using it without on the other hand giving grounds for suspicion to the other side. The most dramatic example comes from the Mediterranean where we sank at two or three stages in the war something from 40% to 60% of every ship that left the north shore of the Mediterranean for North Africa. 60% of the shipping was sunk, for example, just before the Battle of Alamein and again just before Gazala when Rommel was stopped.

Every one of those ships before it was attacked and sunk had to be sighted by a British aeroplane or submarine which had been put in a position in which it would sight it without it knowing that it had been put in that position, and had made a sighting signal which the Germans and the Italians had intercepted. That was the standard procedure. As a consequence of that the Germans and the Italians assumed that we had 400 submarines whereas we had 25. And they assumed that we had a huge reconnaissance airforce on Malta, whereas we had three aeroplanes!

But solemnly that procedure had to be followed by the commanders. When they in their little centre in Cairo or, as it was later on Algiers, said we can't sink all those seventeen ships today, which five are we going to take first and which five will we take second, when they were doing this they had to arrange that procedure before they hit a single ship.

Similar precautions were taken in the Atlantic, but there the problem was different. That is why the Germans got most suspicious about the Atlantic. The great feature there was that the Enigma was used in the first instance not to fight the U- Boats but to evade them. And the problem was how could you evade them without their noticing. You have a situation on the graph in which the number of U-Boats at sea in the Atlantic is going up, and the number of convoys they see is going down!

How do you cover that? We did cover it but it was done by a different system from what I have just described in the Mediterranean. We let captured Germans, people we had captured from U-Boats write home from prison camp and we instructed our people when interrogated by Germans - our pilots for example - to propagate the view that we had absolutely miraculous radar which could detect a U-Boat even if it was submerged from hundreds of miles. And the Germans believed it.

They had an enquiry saying 'surely it must be possible that it is the Enigma that isn't safe.' And the cipher men come back and say 'it can't be the Enigma.' So somebody gets up and says 'well, it must be this bloody radar that we have heard about.' And so they decided. But you see different solutions had to be adopted for each particular situation. But these were the kind of precautions that were taken I think with great success. I mean they never really did tumble to the idea that it was unsafe, which is pretty marvellous really.

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Sunday, February 16, 2014

A Failure of Coalition Leadership: The Falaise-Argentan Gap

This report describes the roles, missions, and command relationships of four significant personalities (Generals Eisenhower and Montgomery and Lieutenant Generals Bradley and Patton) of the Allied military coalition prior to and during the Allied breakout from the Normandy peninsula. Specific personalities and personal characteristics that affected coalition relationships are described. The report discusses the strategic and operational advantages of both sides as of August 1, 1944 and gives a brief overview of the actual battle. Specific leadership failures and analysis of those failures and the strategic consequences are described in detail.

The Influence of Ultra on World War II

In the last half decade, intelligence, once a stepchild in World War II history, has assured itself a place among more fully covered aspects of the conflict. A flood of new information and insights was set off by revelations on the ULTRA secret initiated by Gustave Bertrand and F. W. Winterbotham.' The cloud of mystery once dispelled, the door was open to further disclosures on ULTRA itself and the unique role claimed for it in influencing the course of the war and, conceivably, its final outcome. With so much brought to the light of day, the remaining aspects of the clandestine sides of the conflict scarcely seemed worth the trouble of keeping them in obscurity. British Secret Service files, which remained closed in the late 60's when the reduction of the traditional waiting period on the release of public records to 30 years offered so many windfalls to World War II scholars, have become increasingly accessible.

This essay will assume a broad familiarity with the epic tale of how Polish, French, and British scientists and cryptologists unraveled the mysteries of the German Enigma machine and, eventually, of most of the codes in which its messages were transmitted. A similar acquaintance is assumed for how ULTRA came to be the central element in first British and then Anglo-American intelligence gathering and appraisal and for innumerable operational decisions. What will be attempted here is a rather far-reaching and risk-taking assessment of the part ULTRA played in the war's Western theaters. Factors which underlined or detracted from its impact on events, estimates of its influence on strategy, and evaluation of its contribution to the outcome of the war will be reviewed.

Aside from blanket claims which usually had little dialectical or evidential underpinning, this goes somewhat beyond what has been essayed in previous studies and may appear to some, at this stage of investigation and analysis, as a daring undertaking. Justification for such a course lies in the plea that debate on this complex of problems will be advanced constructively by sharpening the focus on fundamental and longer-range issues as well as offering targets for critical discussion.

The more attention is demanded by problems derived from disclosures about ULTRA, the greater must be awareness of their complexity, especially in any effort to reach clear-cut answers. Having to start somewhere, the tendency has been to simplify by concentrating on ULTRA's place in welldefined phases or during closely associated operations in order to stake out the part it may be presumed to have played.


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