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Breaking the codes: Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park

Martin Sugarman

<plain_text><page sequence="1">Jewish Historical Studies, volume 40, 2005 Breaking the codes: Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park MARTIN SUGARMAN If students of the Second World War were to be asked which single organization contributed most to the defeat of the Axis forces between 1939 and 1945, many might agree that it was the code breakers at Bletchley Park Government Code and Cipher School (BP GC&amp;CS), forerunner of Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ).1 On the basis of enemy messages decoded at BP, strategic decisions were made by Allied leaders which significantly altered the course of the war and saved count less lives. Established in 1938 as a branch of the Foreign Office, and leaning on previous experience, the part played by the staff at BP was revealed in 1974 in F. W. Winterbotham's book The Ultra Secret. The intelligence obtained from the codebreaking was called Ultra, and such information was passed only to the most senior Allied commanders in the field, in case the Germans realized their codes had been broken and changed them. Since then a small library of publications has appeared on the subject,2 as well as two significant films3 and several television documentaries. GC&amp;CS was jokingly known to the staff as the 'Golf Club and Chess Society' - a good cover name - and had originally been founded at the end of the First World War. BP was known as Station X for a short time (the term was later used to describe any listening station, wherever located). As radio signals would have revealed the codebreaking school's location and made it a target for bombers, the radio station was moved away from BP soon after the outbreak of war. It is perhaps ironic that before its purchase by the government the 55 acre estate at Bletchley Park had been the Victorian home of the Anglo Jewish stockbroker and MP Sir Herbert and Lady Fanny Leon. His coat of arms survives over the entrance to the main building.4 After the war the See 'Station X' on a search engine on the world-wide web. Among them F. H. Hinsley and A. Stripp, Codebreakers (London 1993); M. Smith and R. Erskine,/IrtJOK This Day (London 2001); R. I larris, Enigma (London 1995) [a novel]; H. Sebag Montefiore, Enigma: The Battle for the Code (London 2000); D. Kahn, Seizing the Enigma (London 1996); R. Lewin, Ultra Goes to War (London 1991). 'Enigma' with Kate Winslet and 'U571' with Harvey Keitel, made in 2001. E. Enever, Britain's Best Kept Secret (Stroud 1994; 2nd ed. 1999) 5. 197</page><page sequence="2">Martin Sugarman house was owned by British Telecom, and was nearly bulldozed for re development in 1992. But the Bletchley Park Trust saved it for the nation and it is now a growing museum recording what took place there during the war. Besides the mansion, which was the main administrative centre, several of the famous decoding huts, built after 1939, still stand. The original huts were wooden, but as time went on staff were moved into heavily reinforced concrete buildings (the Blocks), some of which were said to have hermetically sealed doors and windows in case of gas attack and heavy window blinds against blast. It is believed that many underground bunkers also exist, but none today have been exposed and the stories cannot be verified except by those who claim to have been in them (see the testi mony of the Bogush sisters below). Some huts were enlarged as work increased and even subdivided in different localities. 'Hut 6' might there fore refer to three buildings in different places. The hut numbers were retained to represent the units of organization even when the staff were rehoused in the new blocks. It is estimated that about 7000-8000 staff worked at BP during the war, joining and leaving at different times, working eventually around the clock in three rotating shifts. Civilians often worked alongside the military, all of them subject to the Officiai Secrets Act. Many had first to go through inten sive training at a nearby village school (Elmers), commandeered for the task, and after close monitoring and testing were passed on to work at BP itself. The work could be both arduous and tedious. Staff were housed on the estate itself as well as being billeted in nearby villages in homes and hotels up to twenty miles away. Buses would carry staff to and from work, and Bletchley railway station was the main link to other cities for leave. However, secrecy was extremely strict, and not only did nobody in the area know what was going on at Bletchley, but even within the park staff worked in isolated units and never discussed their work. Personnel rarely met socially with those in other sections, except at the highest levels of management. Some marriages took place during the war between couples who were working there, but there are well-documented cases of men and women who met and married after the war, and who discovered only many years later that they had both worked at Bletchley. The secrecy was sufficient to conceal from the Germans throughout the war that their despatches were being read, espe cially as BP sent bogus messages in a deliberately simple code to bogus agents congratulating them on the intelligence they were sending the Allies. The enemy was persuaded the information came from elsewhere, rather than from their own secret decoded messages. The increasing work load as the war went on meant that 'out-stations' had to be used for electronic decoding - such as Wavendon House and at Stanmore - at which dozens of staff worked. But these are beyond the scope of this study. 198</page><page sequence="3">Breaking the codes: Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park Bletchley's earliest priority was the breaking of the German Enigma codes. The Enigma machine, invented by the German electrical engineer Arthur Scherbus in 1918, resembled an overgrown typewriter with built-in electronic rotor wheels which could encipher and decipher messages using millions of possible permutations. It was seemingly impossible to unravel without the tables which laid down the settings that were fixed for the machine each day. It was adopted by the military, but the Poles, ever distrustful of Germany's growing militarism, had already copied the machine and one had made its way to Bletchley via French Intelligence by the outbreak of war in September 1939. The French too had begun crack ing the Enigma when a German agent offered them details for payment in 1932.5 The British were so impressed by the machine given them that when it was delivered by General Gustave Bertrand, head of cryptology in French Intelligence, at Victoria Station, the head of the British Secret Service, known as 'C', wore evening dress with his Légion d'Honneur. With it came drawings of a machine devised by the Poles to break the Enigma wheel settings, called a Bombe; a more advanced version was then designed at Bletchley. It was also at BP that the world's first electronic, programmable computer was built in 1943. Called Colossus, it measured 16 by 12 by 8 feet. Ten were made, operated mainly by highly trained Wrens. It was applied not only to Enigma, but also to yet more complex machines invented by the Germans - the Lorenz (code name Tunny) and the Geheimschreiber ('secret writer', code name Sturgeon) - whose codes were likewise broken. Listening posts known as Y stations, located all over Britain, would pick up the enemy radio transmissions and send them to BP by motorcycle despatch (at peak times up to forty riders an hour were arriving at or leaving BP), or by direct cable teleprinter, for decoding. (The General Post Office engineers played an important role in setting up and maintaining the elec tronics at BP. Their research centre was at Dollis Hill.) Once information was deciphered, the details could be conveyed to Allied commanders in the field within thirty minutes. Block A contained the huge Ocean wall charts on which Allied and enemy naval movements - especially of U-boats - were constantly plotted. Pigeons were also used to receive messages from Europe and a special loft for them was situated over the converted stables.6 Work was also done on breaking Japanese codes from 1941, and in 1943 the staff at Bletchley were reinforced by American colleagues. By the eve of D Day, speed in conveying intercepted messages from Y stations to BP was so important that permission was given by Churchill himself to risk using 5 A. Rabinovitch, interview with Walter Eytan (Ettinghausen), Jerusalem Post 22 Feb. 1999. 6 Enever (see n. 4) 36. 199</page><page sequence="4">Martin Sugarman radio transmissions to do this for a few weeks. In the period before and after D Day as many as 3000-5000 decrypts a day were being processed at BP, approximately half of them naval. One block at BP housed a card-index library containing every conceivable scrap of intelligence gathered from Y stations in the UK and elsewhere. This was copied and sent to the Bodleian Library in Oxford should it ever be required. It was staffed by a small army of civilian female clerks and consulted throughout the war by all intelli gence branches of the Allied forces. At first most recruits for BP came through academic and social networks, but as work grew, senior staff wrote directly to Churchill urgently request ing more resources. The prime minister was enthralled by what he knew of the material coming from BP and sent his now famous memo to his chief of staff, 'Extreme Priority. Action This Day!' Some were recruited through speed-crossword competitions in the Daily Telegraph. Winners were invited to a tea party followed by interviews before being recruited for BP. It was no accident that BP was half way between Oxford and Cambridge universities and on the main railway line to London, thought to be far enough away to avoid bombing. Oxbridge was a major recruiting ground for cryptanalysts and London, of course, was the centre of government. (A 'cryptanalyst' is a codebreaker, a 'cryptographer' invents the code, while 'cryptology' is the science of both of these.) Many BP staff had difficulty obtaining work after the war in areas in which they had special expertise acquired during the war. Their oath of secrecy in some cases required them to conceal knowledge of foreign languages they had learned. Nor could they expect to receive a reference from a superior officer, since the department in which they had worked did not officially exist. These restrictions were lifted by a statement made in Parliament by David Owen when he was Foreign Secretary. It is not my aim to rehearse here the history of Bletchley, but to focus on the role of the Jews who served there either as military or civilian attached (CA). I have been fortunate enough to interview several Jewish veterans in both categories, or those who were close to them, making it possible to build up a fascinating picture of what was achieved. Published sources are quoted whenever possible. But in the case of personal recollections, especially when the conditions of interview were informal, it should be borne in mind that some degree of error is possible, although efforts have been made to check facts. 1112693 Flight Lieutenant Richard Barnett was born 23 January 1909, the son of Lionel Barnett, a distinguished orientalist. His AJEX card records his address as 20c Holland Park Avenue, London W14. He was involved in security work from the beginning of the war in September 1939, monitoring 200</page><page sequence="5">J t - **» *" f' Plate I Richard Barnett in RAF uniform. overseas telegrams from a censorship office at Wormwood Scrubs Prison in London. He had been an archaeologist on the staff of the British Museum prior to the war, digging with Agatha Christie's husband, during which time he picked up Turkish. He worked for the Admiralty in 1940 for a few months, and was from then until 1942 in Bletchley, where he and a colleague succeeded in breaking the diplomatic code used by the Turkish government in the Axis capitals. In 1942 he was commissioned into the Intelligence branch of the RAF, interpreting for and supervising Turkish pilots in Britain, and then served in North Africa as liaison officer with two Greek squadrons. During this time he had the ghastly task of identifying bodies washed up on the coast from a refugee ship bound for Palestine, one of the most upsetting experiences of his life. While in Turkey, which was neutral, he served in mufti as an intelligence officer involved in radar. He was later Keeper of Western Asiatic Antiquities at the British Museum, and a President of the Jewish Historical Society of England. He died 27 July 1986.7 7 Information from Barbara Barnett with thanks to Jeremy Schonfleld. See John Curtis, 'Richard David Barnett, 1909-1986', Proceedings of the British Academy (76) 321-45. 201</page><page sequence="6">Martin Sugarman Peter Benenson was born in Germany on 31 July 1921, the grandson of the Russian Jewish banker Grigori Benenson and son of Flora Solomon, who raised him after her husband, Col. John Solomon, was killed. He was tutored privately by W. H. Auden and then went to Eton and Oxford. He was studying history at Balliol when war broke out in 1939 and he volun teered for the Army. He was at BP from 1941 until 1945. After the war he became a lawyer and founded Amnesty International. He died on 25 February 2005. Captain, later Major, Jane Bennett (later Guss), ATS W192366, from Brondesbury Park in northwest London, joined the Womens' Territorials in 1938 and was called up when war broke out. In 1940 she was sent to Field Security training in Aldershot because she had French and German language skills. Her sergeant major was the writer and broadcaster Malcolm Muggeridge. Prevented from going to France by Dunkirk, she was posted to BP in 1940. Her first job was sorting burnt and wet captured German documents for sifting for information. Later she was sent to Hut 3 where she typed in German messages that had been decoded. Later still she worked with a Major Lithgow, whose job was to extract from decoded messages any clues, from call signs and radio frequencies, to the location of the radio stations sending these messages and thence to the positions of enemy units in Europe. This was used to produce maps that were passed to military planners as required. The section started with just two people, but grew considerably by the end of the war. After the war she stayed with Lithgow's section to work in London. Jane remembers clearly the night Coventry was bombed. She and her comrades left to go into the shelter, but she fell down the two steps outside the hut and badly gashed her leg; she carries the scar still.8 Anita and Muriel Bogush were sisters whose family left Stamford Hill in Hackney, London, during the Blitz to live in Bletchley, because their father would not send the girls away alone as evacuees. Their father knew the family of Angel Dindol, a draper, the only known Jews in the town at the time. Anita (born in 1924) worked in Block A naval section from September 1941 to March 1946, and Muriel (born in November 1928) in Hut 4 naval section (which she remembers being called 'HMS Pembroke V') from 27 April 1943 till 15 June 1945. Neither knew what the other did until many years after the war, such was the secrecy. Muriel was recommended to BP recruiters by her older sister, but unlike Anita was not allowed to work Audiotape, sent from Jane Bennett's home in Australia in 2000. 202</page><page sequence="7">i Plate 2 Muriel Bogush. shifts because of her age. They had to learn naval terms, so leave was 'liberty' and food was served in the 'galley'. Although not in the navy, Muriel always wore a white blouse and naval skirt to work with the Wrens around her. Her manager was Phoebe Senyard, whom she much admired and liked. Their parents, Rebecca and Phillip, often invited Jewish person nel to the Friday evening Sabbath meal at their home, 27 Duncan Street. The Ettinghausen brothers (see below), Joe Gillis and Willy Bloom were frequent guests.9 Muriel remembers being shown the 'Mansion' on her first day and a security film, followed by a lecture and signing of the Official Secrets Act. The sisters lived close enough to BP to walk to and from work. A messenger at first, she was soon promoted to the Naval section where she received coded German messages. She had to place a cut-out template on top and copy what showed through and send it by electric tubes (as used in old Personal interview, June 2004. 203</page><page sequence="8">Martin Sugarman drapers shops) to the decoders. The staff sat on high stools round a long table in the centre of the hut. She also recalls the wind-up scrambling phones used by the section leaders of the hut. Her team was taken in secret to London to view the captured U-boat (U no) whose fate they had plotted on one occasion, which caused great excitement and brought home to them the seriousness of their work. Muriel knew about the entrances to many underground tunnels and bunkers at BP and recalls visits by both Churchill and Anthony Eden. As the girls kept kosher, they always brought sandwiches to work. They were socially quite active and entertainment was provided at BP itself. Muriel recalls that as lipstick was scarce, they would melt remnants into a china eggcup over a saucepan of hot water and pour the result back into an old lipstick case. Reckitts Blue (a washing whitener) was used as eye shadow. On several occasions American troops invited groups of the women to their base near Bedford for dances - Muriel remembers being thrilled to hear Glen Miller in person. They were escorted to and from BP in army trucks under guard and kept a strict curfew. After VE Day the sisters continued work on Japanese codes until VJ Day in August 1945. In 1995 Muriel visited the BP museum, noticed a photo graph of herself in the display and asked the curator who had sent it in. She was put in touch with a good friend of hers from BP days, Daphne Skinner. In 1996 when she and Anita were in a group touring the hut where they had worked Muriel happened to mention her association with the place and was asked to address the group. Sub-Lieutenant Laurence Jonathan Cohen RN, who was born in May 1923, son of Israel Cohen, the Jewish writer, and went to St Paul's School, recalls that he was reading Greats at Balliol College, Oxford, in December 1941 when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbour and South Asia. His college master asked him if he would like to learn Japanese, but he had no idea of the purpose until he reached Bletchley. He and others studied in Bedford six days a week under a First World War Naval Intelligence officer, Oswald Tuck, a self-made man, inspiring teacher and former naval attaché in Tokyo.10 Their progress embarrassed the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), London, who had said it could not be done. Their social life centred on Bedford pubs and the concerts of the BBC classical-music section which had moved to Bedford. Cohen recalls: 'At some stage a bomb fell on our building [at BP], a purely accidental target. ... we were sitting around the edge of this room and the whole ceiling fell down into the middle ... it was fortunate we M. Smith, The Emperor's Code (London 2001) 152-5. 204</page><page sequence="9">i hKL * ■VP* Plate 5 L. J. Cohen (fourth from right) with officers of RN Party 'J' and RM Force Rima, HMS Princess Beatrix, off Penang, August 1945. They captured Penang and accepted the Japanese surrender. weren't hit by anything'.11 He was billeted in the cottage of a seventy-year old railway-worker's widow at New Bradwell, encountering poverty compared to his middle-class upbringing in London. But 'We got on very well there were considerable class differences at Bletchley, though . . . I took up with a girl who was in fact the daughter of a Countess. Being from a Jewish middle-class home, that was not the kind of person I would normally mix with. There were dances and parties and we enjoyed ourselves to a certain extent. . . but you never asked questions about what others were doing ... or went beyond your own narrow field.'12 There was an informal approach to rank. 'One day the military police guarding the entrance to BP saw two RAF sergeants walking down the driveway. They suddenly seemed to stop, look around them and then walk very fast in the opposite direction. This looked suspicious and they were arrested and taken to the guardhouse. It turned out they had a valid posting to BP, but did not 11 Ibid. 182. 12 Ibid. 183. 205</page><page sequence="10">Martin Sugarman like the look of it because all these people in and out of uniform were walk ing about arguing and gesticulating . . . they thought it was a military lunatic asylum, and the posting was a mistake.' Cohen later served in the listening and decoding stations in Mombasa (Kenya) and Colombo (Sri Lanka).13 After the war he lectured in philosophy as a Fellow of Queen's College, Oxford, until his retirement. Lieutenant Michael Cohen RNVR was born in 1924 and worked in the Japanese section at Bletchley. He was called up at the beginning of 1943 and after two weeks called for interview near Southampton in front of five senior naval officers. One held up a sheaf of papers and said, 'You were a student of ancient Semitic languages'. Cohen said, with his strong Scots accent, that he had been at the Divinity School in the University of Glasgow and had intended to be a rabbi. The officer handed him a page and asked him to read it out loud. Bereisheet bara Elohim et hashamayim vet ha'arets ('in the begin ning God created heaven and earth'), read Cohen. He was then told he would be sent on a Japanese language course. 'Yes sir!' he replied. After a six-month course in London and two weeks learning to be an offi cer, he was made lieutenant and sent to BP where he worked with the Ettinghausen brothers on naval codes. In the book Codebreakers he is mistakenly referred to as a Moslem Scot called Daoud. This is apocryphal, and Ernest Ettinghausen has testifed in a taped interview with me that this was Michael Cohen's idea of a joke. By 1948 he was coding messages between the Jewish Agency Offices in London and Jerusalem, after which he sailed to Haifa and helped found the 'British kibbutz' at Kfar Hanassi in the Upper Galilee. There he worked in agriculture and managed the metal factory, serving also as an emissary for the kibbutz movement in South Africa. He never revisited Bletchley. 'When you have passed through five other wars, Bletchley is hard to recall... if I close my eyes and think back, what I see are the two lovely Wrens who worked with me'.14 134464/1082701 Squadron Leader Nakdimon ('Naky' or 'Don') Shabetai Doniach15 was born in London 8 May 1907 to poor Russian Jewish immi grants and educated at Haberdashers' Aske's School.16 His father Aaron had previously been arrested by the Russian secret police for Zionist activi ties, had worked to set up Jewish schools for girls in the East End of London and was a noted Arabic scholar at Oxford and the School of 13 Ibid. index. See also The Jewish Year Book, 2004 (London 2004) 228. 14 Jerusalem Post (see n. 5). 15 Interview with Wilf Lockwood, October 2004. 16 Obituary The Times 16 May 1994. 2o6</page><page sequence="11">Breaking the codes: Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park Oriental and African Studies, London, the first person to hold an academic post in Modern Hebrew; he was a scion of the ancient eleventh-century Don-Yahya family. His mother Rahel Chaikin was a noted intellectual, poet and playwright and a founder of the Womens' International Zionist Organization (WIZO). A brilliant student of Hebrew, Arabic and numerous other oriental and ancient languages at various London University colleges from the age of fifteen, he proceeded to Wadham College, Oxford, winning prizes to finance his studies. He visited his mother in Palestine in the 1920s and later, as a private scholar and bookseller, wrote many learned papers on Jewish history. His remarkable linguistic skills led to him being head-hunted from the RAF (which he joined in 1940) to serve at Bletchley Park, but very little is known of his work there.17 The family lived at Leighton Buzzard, within commuting distance of BP. His daughters suspect that he worked in Air Intelligence and translation. The only - and typical - BP anecdote related by Naky concerned a late afternoon near the lake. A colleague, Arthur Cooper, was sipping tea with Naky as they were engaged in deep conversa tion. Not noticing that the tables had been taken away, Cooper gracefully and slowly lowered his cup onto an invisible table top and reached instead the surface of the lake, his eyes still on Naky as he spoke; the cup and saucer gently and slowly floated off into the sunset. After eleven years in the RAF he was moved to GCHQand throughout the Cold War was in charge of teaching Russian (and overseeing the teach ing of Chinese) to Foreign Office officials, servicemen and others, creating vital technical Russian dictionaries for the Intelligence Services. After retirement he moved to Oxford as a teacher and editor of Oxford University Press Dictionaries, especially in Modern Hebrew and Arabic Usage, and was much loved by his Israeli and Arab colleagues in various Israeli and British universities. In 1932 he had married Thea, daughter of the Polish Jewish artists Leopold Pilichowski and Lena Pillico; Thea died in 1986. For his scholarship and Intelligence work Naky was awarded the OBE in 1967. He died 16 April 1994.18 Albert Alfred Ernest Ettinghausen (known as Ernest; brother of Walter - see below) came to BP from Queen's College, Oxford, the same college as his brother, via the RAF. He was born in Munich in June 1913 where his father was working at the time, and was interned by the Germans in the First World War as an enemy alien while his wife and children lived in 17 Obituary The Independent 23 April 1994, with thanks to his daughters Ruth Doniach-Durant and Iona Doniach, telephone interviews October 2004. 18 G. Elliot and H. Shukman, Secret Classrooms (London 2002) passim. 207</page><page sequence="12">Plate 4 Ernest Ettinghausen. u :-Wm ton C2&gt; T0« I D 0 Q ■§ "I FROIH t; S 5205 WS T 00 FROHt fflPIRAL nORTHERK H(STERS T0« PJCTTLE GROUP ADil IHAL POLAR 03AST • HOST Ii3®3 IATE •oSTFROirr* 170(V 25/12. 0025/ 26/1V A &gt;f+ m FA. Plate 5 Message from the Naval Section (NS) at Bletchley to Intelligence, Home Fleet, reporting the German order for the Scharnhorst to set sail and attack. The pencilled wording was added by the CO Home Fleet. The translation was initialled 'EE' by Ernest Ettinghausen. 2o8</page><page sequence="13">Breaking the codes: Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park Switzerland until 1919. The family returned to England in 1920 and Ernest went to St Paul's School, London, and then worked in the antiquarian book business, like his father, in Paris, where he learned French (he already knew German). He tried to enlist in the UK in September 1939, but only the Territorials were being called up and he was sent away. He was again work ing in Paris when the phoney war ended and, helped by the Brazilian embassy consul, went south after Dunkirk, using all manner of transport - including a bicycle - to escape the Nazis,19 at one time sitting on the diplo matic baggage in the back of the diplomatic car. At Bayonne, the Spanish consul refused them passage to Spain but at Bordeaux they were assisted by the French to board a ship coming from West Africa (SS Madeira) together with hundreds of Free French, Poles and other Allies trying to get to England on an overcrowded vessel; they arrived in Falmouth in late June 1940. He immediately enlisted in RAF aircrew, but was sent instead to the RAF Provost (police) section as a sergeant. Head-hunted for his languages, he was given a mysterious message in late 1940 to go and meet someone in the waiting room at Bletchley Railway Station. He was told he would be discharged from the RAF and went straight to the Naval Section in Hut 4 in February 1941. At first he spent alternate weeks at BP and the Citadel next to the Admirality in London (near Horse Guards), but he also spent time at Scapa Flow with the battleship King George V, to get sea experience, as well as on a North Sea convoy and a Dutch submarine. He then began translating decoded German naval messages at BP with his brother Walter in Hut 4, with whom he was also billeted. He followed the same path as his brother and, since both their wives were living in Oxford, visits home were simple when possible. With Alec Dakin he wrote a history of the work of Hut 4. After the war Ernest moved with BP to Eastcote and then to Cheltenham as Intelligence Librarian by the early 1950s. But there was pressure to move him as a security risk, because his brother was head of the Israeli foreign office. He was found a post as librarian of the Science Museum, but the union would not ratify it as he had no formal qualifications, so he became librarian at the Inland Revenue and later director of the Revenue's stamp duty office, for which he was awarded the MBE. He died in 2001, the same year as his brother. He was Vice-President of this Society. Personal audio interview, April 2001. 209</page><page sequence="14">Martin Sugarman Lieutenant Walter George Ettinghausen (later Walter Eytan, director of the Israeli foreign ministry and Israel's ambassador to France) was born on 24 July 1910 in Munich,20 and was in charge of the translator's group of Z watch in the German naval section, Hut 4. A scholar of German from St Paul's School, London, and a don at Queen's College, Oxford, Walter had been called up in September 1940 having already been asked to do secret work while at university. He had been born in Germany, but as a Jew the BP security people knew that he had a special stake in fighting Hitler. After several months' army training (as number 7926780, noted on his AJEX card, which gives his address as i49d Banbury Road, Oxford) he was ordered to BP, arriving in February 1941 as a trooper from the Tank Regiment, with his rifle, shiny black boots, beret with polished badge and kit.21 Walter was one of the first of the Hut 4 team, among whom Alec Dakin describes 'his leadership . . . exercised with gentleness and under standing, and all who knew him and worked with him, loved him'. It was suggested that he revert to a civilian as he would be dealing with very high ranking naval officers.22 Three teams worked the twenty-four-hour cycle, led by Walter, and when Hut 8 broke a code, Hut 4 was ready to produce an immediate transla tion. One group included Wren officer Thelma Ziman (later MBE) who had come from South Africa to fight the war, and also Ernest Ettinghausen, Walter's younger brother (see above). Decrypts would arrive in a wire tray in the form of sheets covered with teleprinter tapes, like a telegram, carrying German text in five-letter groups, just as in the original cipher. The sorter (Number 2) picked out important ones to send to the Naval Intelligence Division at the Admiralty. Number 3 wrote out the German text in clear, stapled it to the decrypt and handed it to Number 1, who translated it into English and stamped it with a number. This went to WAAF clerks (and not, curiously, to Wrens) who sent it by teleprinter to the Admiralty with Number i's initials, such as 'WGE', Walter Ettinghausen. From there it went to commanding officers at sea. Secrecy was tight and the smallest number of people as possible saw the messages at BP. Translation was far from simple since messages often arrived partly corrupted and the linguists had to make inspired guesses as to meaning, using their linguistic skills, context, operational background and so on, to reconstitute the message. They had to acquire a knowledge of German 'navalese', and built up a unique dictionary of such terms. They also often used the excellent library and card catalogues formed at BP to do this. 20 Obituary Daily Telegraph n June 2001. 21 Hinsley and Stripp (see n. 2) 50. 22 Ibid. ch. 5. 210</page><page sequence="15">Breaking the codes: Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park Some messages came via wireless listening stations on the coast. On occa sion Walter would visit these to familiarize himself with their work, or go to the NID in London to see how they worked and what help they might need from BP. Others spent time at sea to learn what conditions were like. If pressure of work was great or the messages especially sensitive, Walter would operate the teleprinter himself, often at night. Before Enigma had been broken, the teams tried to guess enough of the meaning of German ciphers and signals to warn the navy that certain German battleships, for example, were patrolling off Norway, and how to avoid or attack them. Often they could tell that a message was urgent by acronyms the Germans used such as SSD {sehr sehr dringend, 'very very urgent'). The messages dealt with included U-boat routes, U-boat supply-ship locations and movements of capital ships like the Bismarck or Hipper. Walter, whose team knew that thousands of lives depended on their work, especially during the Battle of the Atlantic, claimed that 'I knew the name of every U-boat Commander'. They enabled the Operational Intelligence Centre to re-route convoys to avoid the submarines. Walter also vividly recalled the last messages of the Bismarck, whose end he helped bring about in May 1941. Eventually the section branched out into reading messages from Italian, Vichy French and Spanish sources. Walter remembered having little trouble in dealing with these. It was Walter who set up the weekly meetings of Jews at Bletchley which quite a few attended regularly. They met on a Wednesday evening at the apartment of Joe Gillis, a Sunderland-born mathematician from Belfast University who later became a professor at the Weizmann Institute at Rehovot. Among other things, Gillis broke the codes in which the Germans sent their weather reports, which were of importance to Allied air forces. At these meetings they discussed the future independence of the Jewish State and the immigration which many carried out after the war. It was there, and thanks to Walter, that PATWA, the Professional and Technical Aliyah Association was founded to encourage Jewish professionals to emigrate to Israel to form the nucleus of a modern, democratic nation. They did not hold religious services at BP, but tried to get home for major festivals. On one night in early 1944 Walter's team intercepted a message from a German vessel in the Aegean, saying they were transporting Jews from Rhodes or Cos for Piraeus zur Endlösung, ('for the final solution'). He had not heard this expression before but instinctively knew what it meant; he never forgot it and it left its mark on him till he died. Late in the night in July 1944, when Walter was on duty, a message about Hitler's death arrived from German Naval HQ. He decided to wire it himself to the Admiralty rather than use a WAAF assistant. But it was part of the ill-fated Stauffenberg plan to assassinate Hitler. 211</page><page sequence="16">WWr N Plate 6 Walter Ettinghausen, later in life. When Winterbotham's The Ultra Secret was published in 1974 Walter refused to read it in protest at the breaking of the oath to remain silent. At that stage even his wife knew none of the details of his work at Bletchley. Walter went to Israel in 1946 and set up a school for training foreign-service staff. He was involved in the siege of Jeruslaem during the 1948 War of Independence and headed the Israeli delegation at Lausanne in 1949, sign ing the agreement with Egypt, the first between Israel and any Arab coun try. After serving as director of the foreign ministry for eleven years and as ambassador to France, he became permanent secretary of the Israeli foreign office. Walter remained a close friend of Anne Ross (see below) until he died in 2001.23 Anne relates how for years, right through his distinguished diplomatic career, he corresponded with his elderly landlady in Bletchley until she died, a typical act of sensitivity and loyalty. 23 Letters in AJEX files. Obituary, Daily Telegraph 11 May 2001. 212</page><page sequence="17">Breaking the codes: Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park Ernst Constantin Fetterlein/Feterlein was the son of Karl Fedorovich and Olga Fetterlein née Meier.24 She was almost certainly Jewish. He was a cryptanalyst under Tsar Nicholas in his 'Black Cabinet', reaching the equivalent rank of admiral. Leaving Russia for Britain after the Revolution of 1917, he was one of the earliest recruits into GC&amp;CS after the First World War in 1919. He retired in his sixties in 1938, but was recalled to active service and worked at Bletchley on the German diplomatic code system known as Floradora. He died in 1944.25 His brother Paul Fetterlein, of whom nothing more is known, also worked at Bletchley. Eric Frank was born in Cardiff in 1907, went to King Edward VI School in Birmingham and read classics and modern languages at Jesus College, Cambridge.26 Nothing is known about his work at BP, but he was almost certainly a translator. After the war he taught for many years at the Hasmonean Grammar School for Boys in Hendon, London, and after retir ing to Jerusalem in 1971, worked for various charities as a volunteer. He died there in June 1993. Joan Enid Friedman was born in Birmingham in November 1918 to My er and Dora (née Tuchman), where her father was a civil servant. They lived in Edgbaston and she went to King Edward VI School, read classics at Girton College, Cambridge, from 1937 to 1940 and briefly taught German in schools in Southwold and Nottingham.27 She was then head-hunted by the Foreign Office and sent to BP, being billeted in the nearby village of New Bradwell with a family whose son was away in the forces. She worked in the Naval Section with Walter Ettinghausen, whom she knew well. On receiving decoded German messages she would translate them into read able English before they were forwarded to various intelligence branches for use in the field. At the time of interview,28 Joan could not remember much of her life at Bletchley, but said that her upbringing led her not to eat any non-kosher food, and that as a result her diet was quite plain. After the war Joan worked as a senior librarian at the universities of Birmingham, Keele and Cambridge, before becoming a senior lecturer in librarianship at Sheffield in 1964 where she continued until 1980. V. Madeira, '"Because I don't trust him, we are Friends": Signals Intelligence and the Reluctant Anglo-Soviet Embrace, 1917-24' Intelligence and National Security XIX no. 1 (Spring 2004) 45 n. 19; thanks to Alan H. Bath. Information thanks to Ralph Erskine. Obituary Jewish Chronicle (hereafter JC) 4 June 1993. Girton College Archives, Cambridge. Thanks to Kate Perry. Telephone interview, Dec. 2004. 213</page><page sequence="18">Martin Sugarman Captain William (Wolfe) Frederick Friedman was born in 1891 in Kishinev, Russia, but was brought to the US by his parents, Frederick and Rosa, as a baby. His father was a postal worker in Pittsburgh.29 He studied plant genetics at Cornell University and then worked for Fabyan Riverbank Laboratories in Chicago, where he became interested in ciphers as a result of his employer's obsession with proving that Shakespeare's works were really written by Francis Bacon. During the First World War he offered the US government help from his ciphers department at Riverbank and it soon became the official US Government cryptographic centre. Here he unrav elled codes used by subversives in the US and trained US military officers in cryptography. He joined the army in 1918 and served in France as General Pershing's personal codebreaker. By 1929 he led the Army Signals Intelligence Section (SIS), published works on the subject and was one of the first to apply statistics to codebreaking. In the 1920s and 1930s he studied the weaknesses of the new generation of electronic coding machines and designed his own more complex version which was used, unbroken, by the Americans in the Second World War. He broke the most secret Japanese diplomatic 'Purple' code in 1939, together with his Jewish colleague, Lieutenant Leo Rosen. It was Friedman's work which allowed interception of the notorious message from Tokyo to the Japanese embassy in Washington on 7 December 1941, which warned of impending war. After recovering from a mild nervous breakdown, he was sent to work at Bletchley in 1941 as research director of the American SIS and oversaw the exchange of information with Britain on the 'Purple' code for that on Enigma. This enabled the Allies to read coded messages between the Germans and the Japanese. Friedman was impressed by what he learned at BP and was concerned that the USA should develop its own cluster of Bombe decoding machines, since he was afraid that a few well-placed enemy bombs could destroy everything at BP in one fell swoop. Awarded the US Medal of Merit in 1946 (the highest given to civilians), he stayed with the US government till 1956, when he retired to continue his research on the 'Shakespeare codes' while still acting as a consultant to the US government. He died in 1969. His wife Elizabeth was a codebreaker in her own right and worked for various American law-enforcement agencies breaking codes used by organ ized crime. She worked in the Second World War for the OSS, bringing to justice a woman spying for the Japanese by writing messages on dolls which she sold using a mail-order business. Elizabeth died in 1980. William F. Friedman web site. 214</page><page sequence="19">Plate 7 Joshua Goldberg Captain Joshua David Goldberg was born in Manchester in December 1924. A brilliant pupil at Manchester Grammar School, he had to repeat his last years until old enough to go up to Corpus Christi College, Oxford, to read classics. From there he was headhunted for the Intelligence Corps and Bletchley Park's Japanese translation section. He attended the fifth course in Bedford and was at BP from August 1943 until February 1944. His name is missing, however, from the BP personnel list, one among many such omissions.30 His widow Hilda (born in Jerusalem) testifies that JD never spoke about his time at Bletchley, but said that the Japanese course was so intense and pressurized that two men in his group committed suicide.31 When the war ended Captain Goldberg worked in Intelligence in Germany and became a lawyer. His photograph is on display in the Japanese section at Bletchley. 30 A. Stripp, Codebreakers in the Far East (London 1995) 182, photograph. 31 Telephone conversation with Mrs Hilda Ferder-Golberg née Salaman and daughter Gila in Jerusalem, October 2004. 215</page><page sequence="20">Plate 8 Julius Goldstein. 114705761 Sergeant Samuel Julius Goldstein (Julius Gould) was born in Liverpool in October 1924 and when war broke out was at Liverpool Collegiate school. He studied classics at Balliol32 then enlisted into the army (Intelligence Corps) and was selected from there to study Japanese and went to BP in spring 1944. He was billeted in the nearby army camp and was able to walk to work. He mainly translated what the Japanese and Germans were saying to each other via their consulates in neutral countries and what the Japanese were then reporting to Japanese High Command in Tokyo with regard to German matters, often containing significant clues to German plans, morale and strategy. On one occasion an orthodox Jewish family named Teitelbaum invited him for a Sabbath meal, but otherwise any Jewish contacts were in nearby Oxford. Interview with the author, June 2003. 2l6</page><page sequence="21">Breaking the codes: Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park Julius remembers a College atmosphere, in which eccentric academics in college scarves and old school ties used their spare time to read and hold common room discussions. After the war he stayed in Intelligence and was moved to London at the start of the Cold War, about which he would say nothing. He returned in 1946 to Oxford and held several university posts in sociology until he retired as Professor of Sociology at Nottingham. Harry Golombek was born at Railton Road, Herne Hill, London, in March 1911, to a Polish-Jewish immigrant greengrocer, Barnet, and his wife Emma Sendak.33 He attended Wilson's Grammar school in Camberwell, studied philology at King's College, London, and became an international chess champion. At the outbreak of war he joined the Royal Artillery, but was recruited to BP because of his maths and analytical skills. There he often played chess with Turing. It was Golombek who broke the Abwehr code used by the enemy in Turkey. Between 1945 and 1985 he was the chess correspondent for The Times, writing prolifically on the game.34 He died in January 1995. Irving John (Jack) Good (real name Isidore Jacob Gudak), FRS, was born in 1916 in Manchester to immigrant shopkeepers, and became interested in maths and ciphers as a small boy. He was a mathematics scholar at Jesus College, Cambridge, and after being head-hunted and interviewed by Hugh Alexander (a British chess champion like Jack) and Gordon Welchman in 1940, was sent to BP on 27 May 1941 (the day the Bismarck was sunk) to work first in Hut 8 under the great Alan Turing, breaking the German Naval Enigma codes. He was Turing's main statistical assistant, earning his respect, and was thus a major player. His speciality was 'Banburismus' (so called because the paper used was printed in Banbury) which meant weighing the probability of the accuracy of a crib - that is, the probable meaning of a word or words in a message which was not quite decoded, and devised a method which greatly speeded the solving of such problems. One night Good had a dream about reversing the codes received from Enigma and was moved to try this next day on a particularly baffling code that had come in. It worked - he had solved a problem in his sleep.35 Good was moved to Hut F in May 1943 to work on Tunny36 as a crypt analyst. Tunny/Lorenz carried messages to and from Hitler and his High Command. The section, which was nicknamed the 'Newmanry' after its team leader Maxwell Newman (see below), also included Peter Hilton (see 33 Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (Oxford 2004) XX:7i2-i3 34 Web site: 35 Sebag-Montefiore (see n. 2) 218. 36 Hinsley and Stripp (see n. 2), ch. 19. 217</page><page sequence="22">Martin Sugarman below) and Peter Benenson (see above). Among Jack's refinements to the Colossus machine was a system that enabled the codebreaking process to be speeded up. After the war he worked as professor of statistics at the University of Manchester, with Newman, and also for GCHQ. He then moved to Trinity, Oxford, and later to the University of West Virginia.37 He was a prolific writer and one of the inventors of the computer as it is today. Peter Hilton, born in London in 1923, was head-hunted in his fourth year at Oxford, although a student of neither maths nor German, aged twenty one. He was the only one who turned up for the interview at his college. He was sent to the 'Testery' (named after Major Tester) at BP, found code breaking very exciting and often worked thirty hours at a stretch.38 Peter remembers that the Germans were so sure that their codes were not being read that they did not take precautions. For example, they would often begin messages with 'Heil Hitler' and once that was known, and kept being used, deductions could quickly be made about the meanings of the letters. After the war Peter became professor of mathematics at the State University of New York. Morris Hoffman was working in HM Customs and studying languages at Birkbeck College, London, when war broke out. Through his professor of German he was invited to an interview with Commander Saunders RN, in Broadway near St James's Park. Morris later discovered this was the HQ_of the British Secret Service. Part of the interview was to test his German, and by 12 February 1942 he was at BP, with no idea what to expect.39 He was billeted in Leighton Buzzard and sent to work in Hut 3 where his initiation included translating German Enigma decodes passed to them from Hut 6 next door, the messages being passed through a hole in the partition. He remembers clearly the large wall map which showed the complete order of battle of the Luftwaffe. With Morris were also experts employed to evaluate each message's level of importance (forces and civilian attached), to clarify German technical terms, locate places on maps mentioned in codes, evaluate what the Germans knew about British messages and so on. He was allocated to assist F. L. Lucas (English don at King's College, Cambridge) in working on the destruction of convoys supplying Rommel in the Mediterranean. He then helped John Saltmarsh (King's College librarian) on coded map references to Rommel's positions 37 Lewin (see n. 2) 88; also the Jack Good web site. 38 M. Smith, Station X (London 1998) 145-6. 39 Personal account to the author, AJEX files. 2l8</page><page sequence="23">Plate 9 Morris Hoffman. and intentions in North Africa, and Morris drew maps interpreting the coded situation reports. Churchill was shown some of these and got himself added to the distribution list. In late 1943 Saltmarsh fell ill and Morris took over. A growing problem was locating the small places mentioned by the Germans, too small to be in atlases, where for instance crucial HQs might be located. He was allocated four women staff to assist him. He bought old Baedeker Guides from a second-hand shop in London, and these were augmented by captured maps, telephone directories and so on. If Morris spotted in a message the name of someone being transferred from one place to another known to be connected with radar or Vi or V2 research, he knew the detail might be of significance and passed it to the relevant section under Professor Frederick Norman. Norman once said to one of his assistants, of information Morris had passed to him, 'Where Hoffman has trodden, no grass grows', a rare compliment. 219</page><page sequence="24">Martin Sugarman In early June 1944 — having now moved in with a Scots couple near BP itself - he was asked by a senior officer to prepare a map of the Cherbourg peninsula for distribution the following morning. He finished after midnight and then went home to sleep. Early next morning he was woken by his landlord who told him he had best go to work, because 'the Second Front is blazing!' Morris did his best to look surprised. On another occasion Morris managed to deduce an entry route used for Axis submarines in the north Mediterranean. It was referred to a senior committee but not used as it might have given a clue that Enigma had been broken. On matters Jewish, Morris comments that eating kosher food was never a problem. He went vegetarian and was treated accordingly whether in digs or the canteen. He attended the Joe Gillis evenings and met several Jewish staff from BP. One evening a policeman appeared at the door and asked why so many people were meeting in one place. Walter and Joe refused him entry, but he waited outside and accused Thelma Ziman of using her car for an unauthorized purpose (she was in fact on her way to work). There were three very orthodox families in Bletchley itself, evacuated from London, and when Morris's father died in August 1942 he went to their tiny shtiebel to say kaddish and they became friendly. When one of the young men tried to impress on Morris that he should not work on Shabbat, Morris wanted to respond that even the Maccabees fought on Shabbat, but he thought better of it. On another occasion, Walter Eytan showed him a captured German book whose binding had been made from a looted Torah scroll, which served as a sombre reminder of what they were fighting against. In 1944 Morris was privy to the fact that following the V1 threat, the first V2 rockets were about to be launched. Lucas warned him he must say noth ing to anyone; he knew this anyway, so was unable to warn his mother on visiting her and had to keep his peace while he sat with her and the last V1 and the first V2 hit London. Captain John Klauber was born in Hampstead, London, on 1 January 1917, went to St Paul's School and read modern history at Christ Church, Oxford. He went into the Intelligence Corps at the start of hostilities and was sent to BP, but little is known of his work there. After the war he became a doctor and psychoanalyst, helping to re-establish psychoanalysis in Germany and serving at the time of his death, on 11 August 1981, as President of the British Psycho-Analytical Society.40 40 I am grateful to Jeremy Schonfield for directing me to William Gillespie, 'Obituary, John Klauber (1917-1981)', The International Journal of Psycho-Analysis 63,1 (1982) 83-5. 220</page><page sequence="25">Breaking the codes: Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park Major Solomon Kullback was born in Brooklyn in 1903 and moved into cryptoanalysis on a parallel course with Abraham Sinkov (see below). He came to BP in May 194241 to learn about Enigma and assist with the break ing of the Japanese codes which the Americans had achieved. Shortly after his return to the USA he became head of the Japanese section. He was much liked and often worked the night shift with his staff to boost their morale as 'not forgotten'. After the war he stayed in US intelligence, but also taught maths at George Washington University. He was known as a man of unlim ited enthusiasm and energy, who loved bowling. He died in 1994. Lieutenant Arthur J. Levenson was one of many American Jews at BP. Secretly transported on the SS Aquitania in 1943 with about twenty members of the US Signal Corps, he was a young mathematician with a cover story as a pigeon expert. He worked mainly in Hut 6 and later moved to Block 5. It was the first time he had met British people, but integration was almost immediate and great friendships were made. He enjoyed a vigorous social life and all his stereotypical views rapidly disappeared. Affable and respected, he was regarded as one of the leaders of the Americans at Bletchley. He remembers that the Germans 'changed the [Enigma] wheel patterns infrequently until D Day and so once you had them recovered, you were in. But after we invaded they changed the patterns every day. So we went to the boss [Edward Travis] and said we need four more of Colossus. ... he went to Churchill... so we got four more. ... we could not have done without them.'42 After the war Levenson was sent to southern Germany with an Anglo American team (the Technical Intelligence Committee) to seize the latest German communications technology before the Russians located it. The first proposal was to parachute the team into Berlin with the 101st Airborne as protection, but they instead went overland, recovering equipment even from Berchtesgaden, Hitler's mountain retreat, before driving it back to England in a convoy of German signals trucks. After VJ Day, when the foundations of Anglo-American intelligence exchange were solid, Levenson, who worked for the National Security Agency (the equivalent of GCHQ), recognized that this relationship had begun at Bletchley. 7928156 Bernard Lewis was born in east London in May 1916, the son of Jane and Hyman Lewis, an Eastern European immigrant. He attended Wilson College Preparatory School and the Polytechnic School before reading Middle Eastern history at the School of Oriental and Africal Studies, London, where he became proficient in Arabic, Russian, Turkish 41 Web site: 42 Smith (see n. io) 164. 221</page><page sequence="26">Martin Sugarman and other south European and Middle Eastern languages. On the outbreak of war he joined the Armoured Corps (59th Regiment), was posted to Tidworth, but was transferred to the Intelligence Corps as a corporal in Winchester in early 1941. After several months he was suddenly ordered to 'an unknown destination' and told to collect a travel warrant for London. At Waterloo he was told to ask the Railway Transport Officer (RTO) for instructions, and received a warrant for Euston. There the RTO gave him another warrant for Bletchley, where, he was informed, 'someone would meet him'. At Bletchley he was taken to digs in the village and told to report to BP next morning. Concerned that his family would not know where to contact him, he was told mail would be forwarded. Amusingly, the follow ing day he received a letter diverted from Winchester, despite all the elabo rate efforts at secrecy and travel warrants to mysterious destinations.43 For several months in 1941 he worked at translating and decoding, detached from the army, attending Wednesday-night Jewish gatherings with Joe Gillis. In 1942 he was moved to the Foreign Office in London. After the war he was Professor at SO AS till 1974, then at Princeton till 1986, writing on the history and politics of the Middle East, among other subjects. He still lives there in partial retirement. 2378351 Vivian David Lipman was born in west London in 1921, the grandson of Rabbi Nahum Lipman and the son of Samuel Lipman, MBE. From a traditionally Jewish home he went to St Paul's School and then Magdalen College, Oxford, to read history; he refused to sit examinations on the Sabbath and arrangements were made for him to take them on another day.44 His address is given on his AJEX card as Grange Cottage, Shattley, Stratford-upon-Avon. At Nuffield College, Oxford, he worked for the Social Reconstruction Survey and was called up to the Royal Corps of Signals and Intelligence Corps from 1942 to 1945, working at BP. Little is known about his work there, as like many others he refused to talk about such matters. After the war he became Director of Ancient Monuments, for which he was awarded the CVO, and was a leading Anglo-Jewish historian, serving as President of the Jewish Historical Society of England. He died in March 1990. Major Lionel Loewe, who was born 5 October 1891, worked on the Enigma codes at BP, in Hut 3. With a German mother, Lionel was almost bilingual. He was a classics graduate of Jesus College, Cambridge, and had served in the Royal Sussex Regiment in the First World War in France. He read for 43 Personal telephone call with Bernard Lewis in Princeton, NJ, thanks to Jeremy Schonfield. 44 Obituary JC 16 March 1990. 222</page><page sequence="27">Plate io Lionel Loewe. the Bar while teaching French, German and possibly Russian at Sandhurst between the wars, with an emphasis on the military uses of the languages. He worked in Military Intelligence in India and Ireland and served in the Special Operations Executive (SOE) in Holland, running a small spy ring near the German border until May 1940. His language skills took him to Bletchley where his main job appears to have been translating coded messages from German, especially where the codes were incomplete and good German was needed to unravel the intended message. His son David testifies to his having been periodically on night shifts. Little more is known about his work there, but his son remembers him being in a performance of Gilbert and Sullivan in one of the BP concert parties.45 He practised as a barrister well into his eighties, and died 23 April 1987. Michael Loewe, son of Herbert Loewe who was a brother of Lionel Loewe (see above), was born in November 1922 and was reading classics at Magdalen College, Oxford, when the Japanese war broke out.46 After an 45 Telephone call from Penelope Feinstein, his daughter, in response to a request in the Jewish Chronicle for information on Jews who were at BP, and correspondence with his son, David Loewe, and his nephew, Michael Loewe, June 2004. 46 Hinsley and Stripp (see n. 2) ch. 26; also personal correspondence May 2004. 223</page><page sequence="28">Plate Ii Michael Loewe. initial interview in London, he took his place at the Gas Company show room, Bedford, on 2 February 1942 for his first lesson in Japanese language. He was one of a number of undergraduates from Oxford and Cambridge chosen for training, destined to work on breaking the Japanese naval codes. There being a great shortage of Japanese linguists, these young men and women were put forward as potential students for the Inter-Service Special Intelligence School at Bedford, with the object of learning enough basic Japanese to break ciphers, build code books and translate intercepted Japanese radio signals into English. It was to be a six-month 'crash course', followed by several weeks on a cryptanalysis course. Michael reached BP on 21 August (others went to South-East Asia) and was posted to Hut 7, and later Block B. With him was another young Jewish student, Jonathan Cohen (see above). As civilians, they were thrown in at the deep end to the secret world of Naval Intelligence and ciphers, resplendent uniforms and</page><page sequence="29">Breaking the codes: Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park naval etiquette, Admiralty communiqués and naval acronyms. They were even sent on a navy frigate patrol in the North Sea to familiarize them with naval problems. The greater part of Michael's work was in 'stripping and book building', that is, eliminating the figures of a cipher table and determining the mean ing of the underlying code-groups; this required statistical and indexing skills, usually done in cooperation with Americans either on site or in other locations around the world. Exploitation of Japanese operators' mistakes and captured documents were also used. Large racks had to be made to hold the files being accumulated, and for many years one such rack was used by Michael in his study at Cambridge, where he taught Chinese till his retire ment in 1990. Among Michael's memories are of some around him who cheated in the use of meal tickets, Wrens singing Christmas carols in the corridor, concerts by local talent and the day the German war ended, announced at a solemn open-air meeting by the deputy director at the time, Nigel de Grey. In August 1945 the message announcing the Emperor's order to surrender came through in plain language; as befitted majesty and the court the language was highly formal - so difficult that it defeated comprehension by many who were there. Sergeant Hyam Maccoby was born in Sunderland in 1924, the son of a maths teacher and grandson of rabbis. From Bede Grammar School he went to Balliol College, Oxford, and read classics, but after a short time volunteered to join the army to fight the Nazis. Short in stature, he was sent to Catterick as a Royal Signaller and in 1942 was sent to BP where he worked mainly on night shifts translating decoded messages for despatch. He spoke little to his family of his work there.47 After the war he held several academic posts, latterly as professor of Jewish studies at Leeds, and wrote prolifically on Jewish studies. He died in May 2004.48 Professor Maxwell Herman Alexander Newman, FRS, was born in February 1897 in Chelsea, London, the son of Herman Neumann and Sarah Pike. He served in the First World War and subsequently taught mathematics at St John's College, Cambridge, where Alan Turing was one of his lecture students. Joining BP in September 1942, he was located first in the cryptanalyst 'Testery' section and later had his own department in the eponymous 'Newmanry' in Hut F, assisted by Jack Good (see above). Newman was convinced that a machine could be built to break the codes, and by May 1943 this had been achieved by his collaboration with 47 Thanks to Cynthia Maccoby and Jeremy Schonfield. 48 Obituary The Guardian 31 July 2004. 225</page><page sequence="30">Martin Sugarman technicians at the Telecommunications Research Establishment (TRE) at Malvern. Nicknamed 'Robinson', after the cartoonist designer of fantastic machines, Heath Robinson, the successful machine, which became known as Colossus, was the first computer (as noted earlier). A staff member (American Sergeant George Vergine) said, 'Max Newman was a marvel lous fellow, and I always sort of felt grateful to have known him. ... we used to have tea parties . . . which were mathematical discussions on prob lems, developments, techniques ... in the small conference room. ... a topic would be written on the blackboard and all of the analysts, including Newman, would come tea in hand and chew it around and see whether it would be useful for cracking codes. It was very productive and afterwards it would be summarized in the research log.' Peter Hilton added, 'Newman was a perfect facilitator ... he realized he could get the best out of us by trusting to our own good intentions . . . and strong motivation. ... he was as informal as possible ... for example he gave us one week in four off. . . . we always wrote down what we were thinking in a huge book so we could use them ... he was a model academic administrator.'49 After the war he returned to academia at Manchester University and died in Cambridge in 1984. Displays at BP and his old college explain his contribution. Rolf Noskwith was born on 19 June 1919 in Chemnitz, Germany, into a well-to-do textile-producing family who had the foresight to leave before Hitler came to power. The family's name was originally Noskowitz. His mother Malka Ginzburg and father Chaim (later Heinrich then Charles Henry) had been born in Lodz, Poland. With family and business connec tions in England, they sold up in Germany and came to Nottingham in 1932. Rolfs sister Alexandra later became a famous doctor.50 After Nottingham High School he went to Trinity College, Cambridge, reading mathematics, where he was interviewed with many other students in 1939 to help decide where they could best be used in the war effort. At first he was rejected because he failed the medical for the Artillery, but a year later this was put aside at a second interview for work as a linguist and decoder, but this time he was rejected because of his German birth. Much aggrieved, he continued in his third year at Cambridge. But then, in a third interview, with C. P. Snow and the famous chess champion Hugh Alexander, he was accepted, arriving at BP on 19 June 1941, his twenty second birthday.51 He was met and taken to Hut 8 by Alexander, where German naval traf fic was read with the help of material captured from enemy weather ships. 49 Smith (see n. to) 152. so Interview with the author, May 2004. 51 Hinsley and Stripp (see n. 2) ch. 15. 226</page><page sequence="31">iV Plate 12 Rolf Noskwith, left, in 1947. This had shortly before helped lead to the sinking of the Bismarck. There he worked under the direct leadership of Turing, with Alexander as deputy. His first billet was in a somewhat primitive village cottage near Buckingham, which he reached late one night in the pitch dark. He groped his way into a room and found he was sharing with Bill Tutte, one of the great decoders of Bletchley. The following week he pleaded to be moved somewhere with more congenial facilities and went to stay with George and Elizabeth Bessell in Newport Pagnell. A bus was available, but he had a bicycle too in case he missed the bus. As intercepted messages came in to Hut 8, they were logged in a register. In many cases duplicates came in from several stations. The code had been broken by Turing, but Rolfs job was to guess meanings of corruptions or 'crib' from the German. Then they were run through the Bombe machine which could use hundreds of variables, until the message made sense and was decoded. One message Rolf decoded concerned the Struma, a ship carrying Jewish refugees attempting to get to Israel, which was sunk in the Black Sea with almost all passengers killed. Rolf remembers this causing him much distress. In late 1941 Rolf used a crib to unravel the meaning of messages about coloured flares used for identification by the German navy, an obviously important breakthrough for RN ships to use. This enabled him to go on to break the 'Offizier' Enigma code, used between German naval HQ_and its U-boat officers at sea. This involved the careful analysis of many German messages and captured ('pinched') code books from the U 110 (depicted in the film 'U 571'). Finally, Rolf had his hoped-for solution fed into one of the Bombes and then he took two days' leave, arranging for one of his colleagues, Shaun Wylie,52 to send him a telegram at home to inform him if the crib had Sebag-Montefiore (see n. 2) 121. 227</page><page sequence="32">Martin Sugarman been successful, using the code word 'fish' to denote a result. Rolfs father took down the telegram, totally mystified by the word 'pompano'. Rolf looked it up: it meant fish. The cracking of'Offizier' helped save merchant ships from U-boats because once the position of enemy vessels was known they could be hunted or avoided as resources permitted. In 1943, when more German messages were needed for making cribs, the RAF were persuaded to use a system called 'Gardening'. RAF mines would be laid in a known location at sea, the Germans would send warning messages in code to their navy, and Rolf and his team would decipher the messages, knowing roughly what the German message had said. In 1944 Hut 8 was moved to Block D, where Rolf played an important part in deciphering weather messages which gave crucial information for the D Day landings. Rolf remembers decrypting the message from Field Marshall von Witzleben after the July 1944 plot which raised the false hope that Hitler was dead. This message was passed to Hut 4 where Walter Ettinghausen and Michael Cohen (see above) dealt with it too. It began nur durch Offizier zu entziffern, 'to be deciphered by officer only', and contin ued: 'Naval Headquarters to all, Operation Valkyrie ... Adolf Hitler is dead . .. the new Führer is Field Marshal von Witzleben'. After the message was sent to the Admiralty, as Cohen and friends walked to the canteen for their midnight meal, Cohen remarked, Der lezte Witz seines Lebens, 'the last joke of his life', for Witzleben meant 'joke-life'. But the announcement of the Stauffenberg plotters was premature and by morning most were dead.53 Rolf remembers well the Jewish group to which he was introduced by Jack Good, and heard Walter Ettinghausen saying he would be on the first boat to Palestine at war's end, as he indeed was. After the war, Rolf remained at BP working on Japanese and Yugoslav codes, and went with the whole section when it moved to Eastcote at the beginning of the Cold War. He finally left in June 1946 to work for his father's hosiery and lingerie firm Charnos (Charles Noskwith) at Ilkeston and became director in 1952. He still works there. In 1947 he met Walter Eytan (Ettinghausen) in New York, working to have the partition plan for Israel passed by the UN, and offered Walter his services in Israel as a codebreaker. Eytan replied, amusingly, 'code-breakers we have plenty of!' Rolf first attended a reunion when the BP Association opened the Museum, and met people he had not seen for over fifty years. When Codebreakers was launched at the Imperial War Museum in London in 1993 he met more veterans, and also later appeared in a Channel 4 television documentary. Coincidentally, his father-in-law was Turing's psychiatrist. Obituary of Alec Dakin Daily Telegraph 26 July 2003. 228</page><page sequence="33">Breaking the codes: Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park 88920 Squadron Leader Ary Thadee 'Ted' Pilley was born at 123 Boulevard St Michel in Paris on 7 March 1909, the son of the famous Polish Jewish artists Leopold and Lena Pilichowski. When he was four years old they moved to 7 Hills Road, St John's Wood, London, which became a meeting place for the Jewish intelligentsia of the day, including Einstein and many Zionist leaders. Ted went to the Merchant Tailors School and then to St John's College, Oxford. Later he worked as a sales manager in the international textile business, using his languages, and met his wife in Holland. Together they had founded and managed the Linguists Club in London in the 1930s, where clients met to speak and practise various European languages, led by a facilitator. Ted was serving at Aldergrove RAF base, Northern Ireland, at the outbreak of war54 as Intelligence Officer for 245 Squadron protecting the port of Liverpool. His log book shows that he flew several sorties. But it was his linguistic skills that led him to be recruited to BP. His wife was also screened over tea at Simpsons by a discreet and culti vated MI5 agent, as she had been born in Holland. Ted's son Peter Pilley says that it was Ted who recommended Naky Doniach (see above) - his brother-in-law - for recruitment to BP. Ted worked in the watch room and in Hut 3 with Jim Rose (see below) in the Air Intelligence section, deciding on the priority and precise wording of distilled, decoded Luftwaffe messages and intelligence, and to whom and in what wording to pass them in the field. After the war, probably in Italy, he was given the job of interrogating a senior Nazi leader or general (Peter Pilley is not sure which) and almost as soon as they had begun, the Nazi asked Ted if he was a Jew. On hearing the answer yes, the German said he should leave as he would not speak to a Jew. Ted walked out of the cell. After the war he again ran the Linguists Club, was made Officier d'Académie Française and helped found the Association of International Conference Interpreters and the Institute of Linguists. He died in London in June 1982. Lieutenant Francis Templeton Prince was born in Kimberley, South Africa, in 1912; his father Harry Prinz was Jewish. After Johannesburg and Balliol College, Oxford, where Prince read English, he worked for Chatham House as a foreign-policy analyst. He spent the war in Army Intelligence and cryptography at Bletchley, and later became an established poet writing the famous war poem 'Soldiers Bathing', and lectured at Southampton University. He died in August 2003.55 54 Interview with his son Peter, October 2004. 55 Obituary The Times 8 Aug. 2003. 22Ç</page><page sequence="34">Martin Sugarman 77282 Squadron leader, later Wing Commander, Jim Rose (US Legion of Merit), originally Elliot Joseph Benn Rosenheim,56 was born in Kensington in June 1909, the son of Ernst and Julia (née Levy). He went to Rugby and New College, Oxford, where he read classics. His AJEX card notes his father's address as 9 Pembridge Place, London W2. Before the outbreak of war he worked helping Jewish refugees from Nazi Germany, but joined 609 Squadron RAF as its Intelligence Officer in September 1939 and was then sent to BP.57 Rose specialized in assessment in the Air Intelligence section in Hut 3, for which he had to develop a cool appraisal of the Luftwaffe's order of battle, strengths and weaknesses, on all fronts, based on informa tion coming from Hut 6. His main job was as head of 3A - BP's main Air Advisor - liaising with the Air Force staff and the BP cryptanalysts as well as maintain the delicate balance between the competing needs of all three services. As he described it,58 Hut 3 was centred on the Watch Room, where watchkeepers sat with the representatives of the three services. Together they compiled the material being decoded from German into readable English, prioritized it and sent it to commanders-in-chief and commanders in the field for action. It was also indexed so that it could be cross-referenced with other information received, which might then reveal patterns of devel oping enemy strategies. A message was not just of itself, but could be related to previous and later messages to reveal other intelligence. Rose wrote that Ultra severely cut supplies to Rommel, as it enabled the RAF to sink his convoys from Italy. But the aircraft were not allowed to bomb until a reconnaissance aircraft had been seen by the enemy, so as not to enable the Germans to guess that Enigma had been cracked. It was infor mation from Ultra, said Rose, that brought Rommel defeat at Alamein. Rose was also selected to deal with US liaison and flew to Washington with Colonel Telford Taylor of US Intelligence to select Americans who could serve in the rarified atmosphere of Hut 3. In December 1944 Rose flew urgently to Supreme Headquarters, Allied Expeditionary Force, in Paris, with the military advisor at BP, Major Alan Pryce-Jones, to warn the Americans about the coming Ardennes offensive. They briefed Eisenhower's intelligence officer, General Strong, who doubted the Germans were capable. Pryce-Jones, with his suede shoes and own form of battledress, sat on the corner of Strong's desk and said, 'My dear sir, if you believe that you'll believe anything'. Three weeks later came the German attack.59 Rose added, 'Hut 3 were asked to do a post mortem .. . and showed the SHAEF intelligence failure'. 56 Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (see i 57 Obituary The Times 24 May 1999. 58 Smith (see n. 10) 132. 59 Ibid. 168. 230</page><page sequence="35">Breaking the codes: Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park After the war Rose became, among other things, an international journal ist and a senior manager of the Institute of Race Relations. Anne Ross (formerly Mendoza/Meadows) was born in Graham Road, Hackney, London, in June 1919, the daughter of Mark and Mina Mendoza. Her grandmother and the grandmother of the actor Peter Sellars were sisters, and both were related to the great English Jewish boxer Daniel Mendoza.60 She attended Wilton Way School, then Laura Place (Clapton) Girls School, then Pitmans College and obtained a qualification in teaching Hebrew from Jews' College. Anne and her family moved to Bletchley to escape the 1940 bombing, and discovered that staff were needed at a 'government office' at Bletchley Park. She applied and was interviewed by a civilian male in October 1940 who placed a revolver on the desk during the interview. He tried to tell her that as a Jew, she was not British enough, but she pointed out that her family had been in Britain since the seventeenth century, to which there was no answer. She felt that the interviewer was anti-Semitic, but her typing skills got her the job and she was sent to work first in the library at BP, and later in Hut 4, the Naval section, to type out decoded messages ready for forwarding. On one occasion she had the temerity to ask a naval officer what GC&amp;CS meant on the letter headings. This caused a major whispering huddle among the gold braid, as anyone asking a question of that sort was suspect; eventually it was decided that it was a sensible question and she was told. There were serious shortages at the time, at first of paper and paper clips. Anne was unimpressed by the poor filing skills and slow typing of many of her colleagues. On one occasion, a long, narrow cardboard box in which her boyfriend had sent her flowers was recycled by Anne to store copies of the message slips they were typing, as it was exactly the right size. This was a success, but reveals the penury and disorganization at BP. When a second box arrived a few weeks later the hut was overjoyed. Later they had the carpenters make up racks of the same size and dubbed Hut 4 'the Morgue' as these resembled coffins. Another clear memory is when one day a small, rotund man in large army boots marched into Hut 4, resembling, as Anne thought, a younger version of Einstein. It was the beginning of a life-long friendship with Walter Ettinghausen. As he left the hut that day, Anne's naval officer, Beasley, announced in his upper-class drawl, 'Good God, are we having kosher meat now?' Anne still feels her skin crawl at the memory. Walter, who had every Saturday off and ate kosher or vegetarian food throughout the five years he was there as an act of defiance, was hugely popular with the staff as well as Personal interview, March 2001. 231</page><page sequence="36">Plate 13 Anne Mendoza with her husband, Harold Ross. expert at his job. Later, when Anne was applying to return to secretarial work at BP but was repeatedly told she could not be spared from her job, a naval officer colleague, called Billington, told her in confidence that some officers from the Admiralty had made it known that they did not want any more Jews in positions of authority at BP. In mid-war this upset her and she spoke to Walter Ettinghausen for consolation. The sinking of the Bismarck is a vivid memory: Ettinghausen and his second in command had cots put in the hut, where they remained for forty eight hours during the chase. One morning, as Anne arrived at work, Walter emerged from the hut unshaven to announce they had 'got her'. Decoded signals from Hut 4 had played a major part in tracking the Bismarck down. Anne was not on duty the night Hut 4 was damaged by a bomb from a lone German plane dumping its load as it limped back home. Next day she came to work and noticed no problems because the hut had been repaired and painted so quickly. Not till the end of the war was she told what had happened. 232</page><page sequence="37">Breaking the codes: Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park Ultimately, Anne was in charge of 80 staff, with 20 per shift and 20 in reserve. The shifts lasted from 8 am to 4 pm, from 4 pm to midnight, and from midnight to 8 am, six days a week. Staff had one long weekend off every month and one week every three months. Since the night shift was paid 10 shillings per week more, there was competition to work nights. But for health and safety reasons this was limited. Anne's administrative duties meant she could no longer type herself, but had to manage the staff and juggle the shifts as some wished to go to balls and even to Sandringham, as most clerks in the early days were debutantes and a few were friends of the royal family. There was a lot of drinking and sleeping around among offi cers and the female staff, which was quite shocking for an orthodox work ing-class, teetotal girl from Hackney. Eventually a hostel was built on the site as local billets had become full. The rooms were only tiny 'monks' cells', but at least they were private with out nosey landladies. Anne and her sister Belle managed to get one each on the grounds that they could rarely eat the non-kosher food in a billet, while at the canteen they could pick and choose. The first Christmas, a huge traditional meal was prepared for the staff which, since they ate kosher, Anne and her sister had to forego and ate sardines and salad instead. On one occasion in the hostel a woman had a baby which died. Anne recalls that the mother hid the baby in an air shaft, but that it was discovered and she was escorted from BP. Nobody knows what became of her. She says that the birth of illegitimate babies at BP was not uncommon, and that the numbers increased in the country as a whole when the first American troops arrived. An English girl who married a handsome American officer who came to work at BP had a baby which was black, from some ancestral intermarriage in his family, creating much gossip One of Anne's naval officers was ordered to sea to try to capture a German Enigma key from a German submarine or ship captain. These were kept in the captain's pocket and a rapid capture was needed so that the captain would have no time to destroy it. Anne's colleague spent many fruitless days at sea on a destroyer, suffering terribly from sea-sickness, before they did force a U-boat to surface. As the captain came to the conning tower he put his hand in his pocket, possibly to destroy the key, but a British rating thought he was reaching for a gun and shot him. He fell over the side and was never seen again, after which Anne's colleague refused to go to sea again. Coincidentally, Wing Commander Wally Zigmund, later President of the Ruislip Branch of AJEX, played a role in one of the luckiest and most important captures of the war during his second tour of operations with 269 Squadron in Iceland in 1941. One day in bad weather one of his patrol aircraft spotted a submarine. He was ordered into a Hudson to find them 233</page><page sequence="38">Martin Sugarman and took off in heavy snow and low cloud southwest for the Atlantic ocean. Suddenly the co-pilot shouted 'U-boat half a mile ahead!' Wally's plane dropped 4 depth charges straddling the submarine, which was forced to the surface after rolling completely over. They circled and used their machine guns every time any crew tried to get to the submarine's gun to shoot back. After three hours of this, the submarine raised a white shirt to surrender. The RN arrived and captured U-570. Code books found in the submarine were taken to Bletchley and used for deciphering Enigma.61 Anne also recalls a young somewhat plain woman in her hut who kept sniffing and, when her colleagues told her about it, was offended. Soon after, a handsome senior naval officer married to a beautiful actress saw her weeping in a corner and asked her to come and chat about it over a drink. The next thing everyone knew they had run off together. He was later apprehended for leaving his post. The bulk of messages changed from German to Italian, Vichy French and Japanese as the war progressed. Since Anne's two brothers and husband were all at sea, she was allowed to visit the plot room where the map showed the position of all naval vessels, giving her an idea of where they were. When the Americans arrived some of the jargon had to be altered; rubber stamps had to be changed from 'Most Secret' to 'Top Secret' in deference to US usage, which Anne remembers greatly annoyed the Brits. Churchill arrived at BP late one cold, misty, November afternoon. He had been examining documents in the 'Mansion' and was about to return to his car, parked in the circular drive, but walked into the central grass area and, knowing all eyes in the huts were on him, gestured to everyone to gather round. Anne remembers hundreds of staff pouring out of the huts and standing round his diminutive figure, his bodyguards holding back the throng. Anne was six feet from him. He looked around, ordered his men to bring a metal waste bin and turn it upside down for him to stand on, and gave an electrifying speech, underlining how crucial their work was, not only to the far flung Allied forces on land, sea and in the air, but also in feeding the nation as they made it possible for more ships to get through with food. After what Anne remembers was a long time, he got down and allowed people to approach him and chat, despite the protestations of his bodyguards. He then made his way to his vehicle, which was the first Anne had seen with shaded windows. As he drove off she saw the V for victory sign he made through the small rear window, to the cheers of the crowd. They returned to work and received next day his famous telegram: 'So pleased to see the hens are laying without clucking'. Anne has been to reunions at BP and, after the fiftieth anniversary of VE AJE"X. Journal, date unknown. 234</page><page sequence="39">Breaking the codes: Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park Day, took her two grandsons to see where she had spent the 1940-5 period. They were used to watching televised celebrations with her, and to her explanations of different military units. Now, as they went through the gates at BP, Anne said she would show them where she had 'won' the war. The seven-year old next said, 'But, Granny, what about those marching men we saw on TV?' While looking round the Museum, Anne noticed that people could not recognize each other after fifty years, and one grandson tore up a piece of cardboard and wrote her name on it and pinned it to her sweater. BP reunion organizers have ever since provided name tags for veterans. Dame Miriam Louisa Rothschild-Lane was born at Polebrook, Northamptonshire, on 5 August 1908, the daughter of a Hungarian Jewish aristocrat Roszika Wertheimstein and the Jewish banker Nathaniel Charles Rothschild. Educated informally but well at home on the family's Ashton Wold estate near Peterborough, and at the family home at Tring, she only much later in life studied formally at Chelsea Polytechnic (zoology) and at Bedford College, London (literature). Her scholarly works on zoology brought her numerous honorary doctorates and degrees. Miriam spent two years at Bletchley Park62 after being interviewed and headhunted like many other scientists at the time (she had been working on scientific war research at Plymouth). She mostly worked night shifts translating German coded messages in the Naval Section, which she disliked intensely. She felt bound by her oath of secrecy, so would say little to me about the precise nature of her work. She lived in a flat at Mentmore given her by her relative, Lord Rosebery, and would commute in her car to BP; Rosebery also gave her a housekeeper for the duration, so her accommodation was somewhat privi leged. While at BP she met and married a distinguished, wounded refugee Jewish commando, later Captain George Lane (Lanyi), MC, in 1943,63 but was asked to leave Bletchley on the basis that he was not born in the UK and was a security risk. Later, BP asked her to stay but she wanted to leave and did so. All of Dame Miriam's mother's family were murdered in the Holocaust in Hungary. After the war she carried out scientific research in Israel - where she spent much time - as well as the UK, publishing nine books and over 300 papers. She died at Ashton Wold on 20 January 2005, aged 96. 62 Personal interview and J. Frazer,_7C 23 July 2004. Obituary, JC11 February 2005. J. Lennard, Jems in Wartime, unpublished MS, AJEX Museum. 63 M. Sugarman, 'A well kept secret: No 3 (Jewish) Troop, No 10 Commando' Medals Today (April 1996) 16-19; also on the www. 235</page><page sequence="40">Martin Sugarman Margaret Judith Rubens was born in May 1920, the daughter of Alex Rubens, a Mizrachi leader, and Rosamund, grandaughter of Hartwig Hirschfeld, the distinguished Jewish scholar and Orientalist who finally became a professor in the University of London. Her grandmother, Paula Loewe was an aunt of Lionel Loewe (see above). She lived at 37 Lyncroft Gardens, London NW6, attended South Hampstead High School and then read classics at Newnham College, Cambridge (1939-42). At some stage she was sent to BP, probably on translation work, but no more is known about what she did there. She stayed in government service until 1948 and was at some stage a social worker and translator in Paris until 1966. Two of her relatives from the Loewe family also worked at BP (see above). She died in June 1996.64 Ruth Sebag-Montefiore, born at 12 Westbourne Terrace, London, in 1916, daughter of Major Laurie and Mrs Dora Magnus (née Spielman), was educated at Notting Hill High School and Burgess Hill School near Brighton. She did secretarial work afterwards, but was recommended to apply for a job with the Foreign Office in 1939. After an interview at Broadway Buildings for an unknown posting, she was sent to BP, where only a few staff had so far been installed, and found herself working in the main manor house. Its former owner (Sir Herbert Leon, Bt.) had been her great-uncle. Ruth describes her work in Hut 10 in her book as follows: 'We were sending and receiving coded telegrams to and from agents in every war zone. Each agent and each codist had two identical books, one a paper back novel, the other filled with five-figure groups of numbers. To encode the telegram you encoded the first few words - which had to contain more than fifteen letters — of a line in the novel, indicating in figure code, the page, line and five consecutive letters — which represented numbers — chosen first - and the five-figure group in the numbers book, where you were starting the message. After turning the message into figures, agent and codist proceeded, by adding or deducting one group of figures from the other to encode or decode the telegram.... you never knew from day to day what messages would reveal. Incoming telegrams consisted of all kinds of news picked up by agents - safe houses for escaped POWs and new agents, disappearance of agents, leaks, landing zones - as well as enemy troop movements, sightings of U Boats, targets for the RAF - and the number of "Zs" indicated urgency, three being most urgent. All was sent to HQ/or action.' 'Once I saw a short telegram enquiring about the health of my cousin 64 Thanks to Michael Loewe and to Samantha Chalmers, Newnham College Archives, Cambridge. 236</page><page sequence="41">Plate 14 Ruth Sebag-Montefiore. Tim Cohen, seriously wounded at Mareth in North Africa, signed by MI6 head, Sir Stewart Menzies, a lifelong friend of Tim's father. This was quite a coincidence as I was one of sixty working three shifts. I added an extra Z (to two) and forwarded it! Our work was so secret that we did not pay income tax; this annoyed my bank manager when I was unable to tell him what I did.' 'All the codists were female and from varied backgrounds, some with husbands serving, some with children — all uprooted. The early appointees were single, middle-aged and dedicated, if scatty; they formed a clique. We were younger, noisy but very efficient . . ,'65 and regarded with some disdain. The pressure sometimes strained relationships and some left, 'unable to stand the life'. 'Hut io was run by a retired general, ill at ease with sixty women, but the department head was a Miss Montgomery of the FO, thin, angular, brilliant with a deceptive smile covering a hard core. Always immaculately dressed she wore fresh paper cuffs every day, bizarre in so nondescript a person. The other huts were fdled with brilliant minds, interesting individually, 65 Ruth Sebag-Montefiore, A Family Patchwork (London 1987) 110-14. 237</page><page sequence="42">Martin Sugarman but collectively, when they poured out of the huts for breaks, gesticulating, unkempt and bespectacled, they looked like extra-terrestials.' 'My first billet was in Bletchley town centre, in a tiny terraced house owned by a train driver and his wife, the Jarmans, lively cockneys and very warm and friendly, who doted on their two sons who were serving. Bath water was heated with a small kettle, and rent was ios 6d per week; I was joined later by a friend, Lillian Beresford-Peirse. Later I moved to Leighton Buzzard and stayed for the remaining 3 years.' In late 1944 Ruth was transferred to Eindhoven and The Hague as the Allies advanced, and was ordered to wear ATS uniform in case of capture by the enemy. Conditions were very basic, but the Dutch loved them as liberators. The British often gave the Dutch food from their Mess as they were starving at first. There Ruth met the Soviet spy George Blake - then a callow youth and most unlikely looking traitor. Ruth was flown home in May 1945 and demobbed at Broadway Buildings where she had signed on. In 1946 she married her second cousin Denzil, the widower of her late sister Pam. He was related to the first Jewish VC winner, Lieutenant Alexander de Pass, and had been born in the house which is now the Israeli Embassy (the family gave it to the State of Israel).66 For many years Ruth worked as a sub-editor of children's books at Chatto &amp; Windus in London. Captain Abraham Sinkov was born in 1907 in Philadelphia, the son of Russian-Jewish immigrants, and brought up in New York where he gradu ated in maths from City College. In 1930, together with his high-school friend Solomon Kullback (see above), he joined the US government crypt analyst service using his linguistic and maths skills, working under William Friedman. He received a commission in the army and also a doctorate, encouraged by Friedman. In 1936 he was sent to Panama to establish the first US radio listening site outside the country. He arrived in the UK in January 1941 in absolute secrecy with a liaison team to work at Bletchley on Enigma, with Leo Rosen (see above).67 They brought, among other things, the machine designed by Friedman that later broke the Japanese 'Purple' code (see above). In July 1942 he headed General MacArthur's cryptoanalysis centre in Melbourne and contributed hugely to Allied success in New Guinea and the Philippines against the Japanese. After the war he stayed in the US intelligence service and was professor of maths at Arizona State University. He died in 1998. 66 Ibid. 116-19. 67 Smith (see n. 10) 100; web site: 238</page><page sequence="43">Breaking the codes: Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park Phyllis Wix was born in July 1923 in Stamford Hill, Hackney, London,68 the daughter of Abraham and Edith, and went to school at Kilburn High School. After evacuation to Keswick in the Lake District she went to the London School of Economics and was then called for interview to Broadway (which she did not then know was the HQ^of British Intelligence) and asked about her interest in chess, bridge, working in a team, and so on. She received a request to appear at Bletchley railway station at a certain time in July 1944. Billeted at Woburn Sands, one evening she came down to make tea in her digs and found her landlord drinking tea sucking through a sugar lump. This is a traditional Russian-Jewish method and it transpired that her landlord's father was from Russia (she cannot remember the family name). Phyllis worked the shift system in Hut 6, sorting the teleprinter tapes into order ready for the decoders. She was vague about how this was done, but says her team used a mock-up of an Enigma machine to crib meanings using known phrases, dates, call signs and others. She recalls a letter of thanks from a senior officer after D Day, describing how they had overrun a German HQand found messages recently sent to German forces that the British forces had read that morning, and paid tribute to the speed with which the Bletchley staff were sending them information which the Germans had just received themselves. She remembers Jewish meetings in the flat of Joe Gillis and knew the whole crowd well. Conclusion Although the Jewish community formed less than half of one per cent of the UK population, the Jewish input to the work at Bletchley was hugely significant, even including the US personnel. Out of 205 Jewish names, 85 are definitely UK Jewish, plus 20 American. If one assumes that 8000 passed through BP - although there were probably fewer - then 85 repre sents i. i per cent, or almost three times the percentage in the UK popula tion of 0.4 per cent. The total number of 205 Jews is 2.6 per cent, or more than six times the expected number. If the Americans are excluded, it is still 2.3 per cent. This chapter in British Jewry's help in defence of the realm can thus be added to the substantial part they played in the regular and special forces of this country. It is a part of Anglo-Jewish history of which we can be justly proud. Personal interview, July 2001. 239</page><page sequence="44">Martin Sugarman Acknowledgements Veterans, their relatives and others who kindly supplied information for this paper are: Barbara Barnett, Alan Bath, Jane Bennett (Australia), the husband of Doris Blustone, the Bogush sisters, Samantha Chalmers (archives of Newnham College, Cambridge), Iona Doniach, Ruth Doniach Durant, Ralph Erskine, Ernest Ettinghausen, Penny Finestein, Joan Friedman, Gila Goldberg (Israel, the daughter of J. D. Goldberg) and Hilda Feder-Goldberg (her mother), Samuel Goldstein, Peter Hilton (USA), Morris Hoffman, the Jewish Chronicle librarians, Bernard Lewis, Wilf Lockwood, David Loewe, Michael Loewe, Cynthia Maccoby, Morris Milner, Beverley Nenk, Rolph Noskwith, Kate Perry (archives of Girton College, Cambridge), Peter Pilley, Dame Miriam Rothschild-Lane, Ann Ross/Mendoza/Meadows, Anna Sander (archives of Balliol College, Oxford), Jeremy SchonField, Hugh Sebag-Montefiore, Ruth Sebag Montefiore, Valerie Serkes (the daughter of Harry Home), the nephew of Maurice Spector, Peter Willett (University of Sheffield), Phyllis Wix, Lena Woolstone.</page><page sequence="45">Breaking the codes: Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park A register of Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park in the Second World War This register is based on research by Christopher King, Archivist, BP Museum, who lists Jewish-sounding names. Only those with additional proof, such as a Jewish Chaplains' cards, are included here. Those who served in the out-stations of BP and in the Y Service are not included. Several US names came from Tony Sales's site on the www. Abbreviations CA 'Civilian Attached', no rank JfC Jewish Chronicle P 'probablyjewish' * discussed in the main text above Abraham, Miss J. L. T. - P Abrahamson, Sidney - translator Abramson, Mr J. L. T. - P Albrecht, Ldg Wren S. D. M. - P Auerbach, Private First Class, Herbert - USA Barfield, Dr - P Barfield, Miss B. C. - P Barnet, Cyril - AJEX file, Colossus team for 2 years Barnett, Fl. Lt Richard David* Barnett, Kenneth Peter, translator - P Barrow, Lt G. W./B. W., RNVR, DSO Bass, Esme - P Bass, Mia - P Bauman, Elizabeth - P Bauman, Miss M. L. A. - P Benenson, Peter* Benhamin, Miss K. M. - P Bennet, Capt. R., RNVR - prob. Levy-Bennett Bennett (Guss), Maj. Jane* Birley, Major Benjamin J. - P Bischoff, Mrs Elizabeth Grace Blank, Mr and Mrs A. David - P Bloom, Army Sgt William - (M. Bogush testimony) from Leeds Bluston, Cpl Doris, ATS Bogush, Miss Anita* 241</page><page sequence="46">Martin Sugarman Bogush, Miss Muriel* Bourne (Henry), Ruth, WRNS - jfC article Cohen, Capt. David, 'Daoud', or Cowan - pseudonym of Michael Cohen* Cohen, Laurence Jonathan* Cohen, Lt Michael, RNVR* Davis, M. J., WAAF 2174293 Davis, R. W., WRNS - Ruth or Rosalind De Haan, Miss S. G. (Marjorie?) - P de Minckwitz, Miss N. - P Deyong, Samuel Peter - P Doniach, Sqd. Ldr Nakdimon Shabetai* Elkins, Win - P Erends, Benny - P Esterson, Ldg Wren Kitty - from London E7 Ettinghausen, Alfred Albert Ernest* Ettinghausen, Lt Walter George, later Walter Eytan* Fehl, Lt Alfred P.-USA, P Fenton, Monica Wingate - P Fetter lein, Ernst* Fetterlein, Paul Fineberg, Lt Firnberg, Major - P Fischer-Sobell, Foreign Office, RAF - P Flack, M. E., WRNS-P Flaxman, Miss F. - P Franco, Miss R. - P Frank, Eric Joseph* Frank, Private First Class, Maxwell N. - USA, P Frank, S. M., WRNS -P Franklin, C. Ruth, see Sebag-Montefiore* Freedman, Audrey Pamela, WRNS - from Leeds Freigel, Lt Alex T. - USA, P Fresco-Corbu, Roger - P Fried, Walter — P Friedman, Miss Joan Enid* Friedman, William F. - USA* Frish, Miss E M. - P Fulton, E. Muriel, WRNS — from Watford 242</page><page sequence="47">Breaking the codes: Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park Gillis, Joseph —b. Sunderland, 1911, studied maths, Trinity College, Cambridge, taught at Queen's University, Belfast, before going to BP, and after the war at Weizmann Institute, Israel, d. 1993 Gluckstein, Mrs E. M. Goldberg, Capt. Joshua David — Japanese Section* Goldstein/Gould/Goold, Sgt Samuel Julius* Goldstein, Theodore - USA Gollop, Miss I. S. Golombek, Harry* Good, Isidore Jacob/John* Goodman, Miss N. M. - P Goodman, J. A. N. - P Goodman, Lt R. J. - P Gottstein, Ldg Writer R., RN - P Graff, L. Cpl C.,ATS-P Greiffenhagen, Mr R. - P Greiner, Miss K. - P Habicht, Mr E. F.-P Hägen, Bridget - P Hardy, Miss E. Anita Harman, Sgt - P Hart, Sgt Elsie B., ATS-P Hellman, Miss E. P. - P Hellman, Miss J. K. - P Hilton, Peter John* Hoffman, Morris* Home, Cpl Harry, RAF 1617083 - from Cricklewood, London Horstman, Mrs J. O. (Elizabeth?) - P Hyman, Sgt John E. - USA Air Intelligence Hyman, Miss P. E. - P Instone, Capt. Robert Bernard Samuel Jacob, Col. - P Jacobs, Techn. Walter - USA, huge statistical contribution to Newmanry over 6 months Jaffe, Heather Jane - P Jaffee, Lt Sidney - USA, Hut 3 Judah, Miss Claire Kahan, MrsM. F. W.-P 243</page><page sequence="48">Martin Sugarman Kahn, Mrs M. J. — P Kanis, Miss Pamela - P Karet, H. W. - died c. 2002, London Klauberjohn* Klusman, Mrs D. O. — P Koppel-Palmer, Miss M. C. — P Kullback, Maj. Solomon - USA* Lander, A. P. F., WRNS-P Leibi, Capt. - P Levenson, Lt Arthur - USA* Lever, Miss Mavis Lillian - P Levin, S. O. Cynthia, WAAF 2022972/8263 - AJEX card Levy, Suzanne Lewis, Bernard* Lewis, P. M. G., WRNS - probably Pauline/Phyllis/Polly Lidstone, Miss P. M. - P Liebi/Liebl, Capt. - P Lipman, Cpl Vivian D.* Lisser (also Lisner?), Sgt R. C. - P Livingston, Mr - alias of a German Jewish refugee (Anne Ross testimony) Loehnis, Cmdr Clive or Joseph - Austrian origin, P Loehnis, Mrs R. B. — P Loewe, Maj. Lionel Louis* Loewe, Michael A. N.* Lyons, P L., WRNS-P Maccoby, Hyam* Mahalski, Norman — CA, P Marks, Miss A. - P Marks, Cpl Barbara - P Marks, Miss Barbara Ruth, ATS - P Massarsky, Sgt - USA, P Megroz, Sec. Ldr P., ATS - P Mendoza, Belle (sister of Anne Ross) Milner, Sgt Ephraim - b. Bridgend 1907, taught mathematics at University of Swansea Miskin, Miss E. - P Monk, Daphne, WRNS Myers, Sec. Ldr, ATS - P Nagel, Miss E. C. B. Nathan, L. - P 244</page><page sequence="49">Breaking the codes: Jewish personnel at Bletchley Park Nenk, Maj. David — Japanese codes Newman, Professor Maxwell H. A.* Newman, Doreen Audrey, WRNS 84187 — from London NW8 Noskwith, Rolph* Oppenheimer, Miss O. D. Perman, Fl. Off., RAF-P Pilley (Pilichowski), Sqd. Ldr Thadee* Pinto-Alves, Sec. Off., ATS? — P Politzer, Capt. - information from R. Noskwith Prince, Lt Francis Templeton* Prins, Lt Cornelius Arnold L., Intelligence Corps 174568 Prins, Lt George Vivian, RCOS (brother of Cornelius?, at BP?) Ramus, Arthur Nathaniel - translator Reiss, Mrs A. M. - P Reiss, Vincent - P, transport officer Roberts (also Baker), Sonia R., WRNS Robinson, Betty, WRNS 89073 - from Cyncoed, Cardiff Rodrigues-Pereira, Miss Miriam, ATS W298557 Roesler, Ldg WRNS J. M. -P Rose (also Rosenheim), Sqd. Ldr Eliot Joseph Ben or Jim - USA Legion of Merit* Rosen, Lt Leo - USA Rosenberg, Lt J. - US Navy Rosengarten, Lt Adolf — USA, transferred to US Forces in Europe 1944 Ross (Meadows/Mendoza), Anne* Rothband, Miss Margaret Rothschild, Miss Joan L., ATS W242790 Rothschild, Dame Miriam* Rubens, Miss Margaret Judith* Rubinstein, Joan Salaman, Miss J., ATS - P Salsberg, Lt Edgar S. - USA, P Sampson, Ldg WRNS M. D. - 35327 Sampson, W.W.-CA, P Schaeffer, Lt - P Schatz, Ldg Wren T. H. - P Sebag-Montefiore, Ruth* Seligman, Miss J. Shaw, Capt. Harold, RN - P 245</page><page sequence="50">Martin Sugarman Shenstone, R., WRNS - P Shiner, Mr A.J.-P Shiner, Capt. J. A. - P Shipton, Ldg Wren M. P. - P Sikora, Mrs M. W. - P Silver, Mr C.H.-P Singer, Miss M. J. - P Singer, Norman - P Sinkov, Major Abraham - USA* Slusser, Robert M. - USA, P Spector, Fit Sgt Maurice Louis - from NW London Stierlen, Miss Doris M. - P Stileman, Miss M. A. - P Sugar, A. L. - P Tabor, Miss D. F. - P Taylor, 3rd Off. M. R., WRNS 34728 - from London W9 Tcharny, Lt Michael Joseph, Intelligence Corps 266688/10691878 Telfer, Mrs M. I. - P Tocher, Ldg WRNS A. J. - P Uzielli, David Rex - P Uzielli, Miss Diana - P Vogel, Capt. Barnard - USA, Hut 3 Weissweiller, Nadine - P Whalley, MrJ.-P Wix (Bloch), Miss Phyllis* Wolfe, Miss B. G. — P Wolfe, Richard - translator, died of illness 1945, Sri Lanka - P Wolfson, Miss M. S. - P Wolfson, Miss Margaret - P Woolstone, Mrs Lena - b. Notting Hill, London, 1919, husband in Fleet Air Arm, Hut 4 with Ettinghausen brothers Wossorsky, Irving E. - Traffic Identification Wyberg, E. V. WRNS - P Yochelson, Pfc Maurice - USA Ziman, Lt WRNS Thelma - volunteer from South Africa, received MBE* Zuppinger, Miss Zoe - P Addendum: Carter, Sydney Norman, also known as Solomon Chernitsky 246</page></plain_text>

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