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  1. #1
    Senior Member Country: England mrs_emma_peel's Avatar
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    Operation Mincemeat
    BBC2 Sunday 5th December 2010 ... 9.00-10.00pm

    For more than 60 years, the real story behind Operation Mincemeat has been shrouded in secrecy. Now, Ben Macintyre reveals the extraordinary truth in a documentary based on his bestselling book. In 1943, British intelligence hatched a daring plan. As the Allies prepared to invade Sicily, their purpose was to convince the Germans that Greece was the real target.

    The plot to fool the Fuhrer was the brainchild of Ian Fleming, the creator of James Bond. British agents procured the body of a tramp and reinvented his entire identity. He was given a new name, an officer rank and a briefcase containing plans for a fake invasion of Greece. The body was floated off the Spanish coast where Nazi spies would find it. The deception was an astonishing success. Hitler fell for it totally, ordering his armies to Greece to await an invasion that never happened.

    The secret tale of Operation Mincemeat was told by Ewen Montegu in his 1953 book and adapted into the classic 1956 Ronald Neame directed movie The Man That Never Was starring Clifton Webb as Lt Commander Ewen Montegu, Gloria Grahame as Lucy Sherwood, Robert Flemyng as Lt George Acres, Josephine Griffin as Pam and Stephen Boyd as Patrick O�Reilly.

    Sources: DigiGuide/Mrs Emma Peel
    Emma

  2. #2
    Senior Member Country: UK DB7's Avatar
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    Should be good but I think CH4 covered it a few years ago. Does he now lie in an Italian cemetery?

  3. #3
    Senior Member Country: UK
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    yes i am sure that there has been a C4 documentary on it.Also an excellant book was published i think earlier this year.Highly recommended.

  4. #4
    Senior Member dpgmel's Avatar
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    Yes looking forward to this very much too, the book by Ben McIntyre is well worth investing in

  5. #5
    Senior Member Country: UK
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    In a forthcoming book, a historian claims to have finally established beyond any reasonable doubt the identity of the person who 'played' the part of the dead man: a homeless Welshman called Glyndwr Michael. .........
    During his research, he came across a "most secret" memo written by Commander Montagu, the significance of which appears to have been overlooked and which Professor Smyth says proves the body of Mr Michael, who was mentally ill and died after ingesting rat poison at the time the operation was being planned, was used. Mr Michael was first proposed as The Man Who Never Was by an amateur historian in 1996, but the evidence to support this failed to convince supporters of the Dasher theory.

    Historian claims to have finally identified wartime 'Man Who Never Was' - Telegraph

  6. #6
    Senior Member Country: UK didi-5's Avatar
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    That name was linked with the operation in one of those 'The Greatest ...' books a while back; I remember because of the Welsh name. So no big revelation?

    The documentary should be good.

  7. #7
    Administrator Country: Wales Steve Crook's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wadey View Post
    In a forthcoming book, a historian claims to have finally established beyond any reasonable doubt the identity of the person who 'played' the part of the dead man: a homeless Welshman called Glyndwr Michael. .........
    During his research, he came across a "most secret" memo written by Commander Montagu, the significance of which appears to have been overlooked and which Professor Smyth says proves the body of Mr Michael, who was mentally ill and died after ingesting rat poison at the time the operation was being planned, was used. Mr Michael was first proposed as The Man Who Never Was by an amateur historian in 1996, but the evidence to support this failed to convince supporters of the Dasher theory.

    Historian claims to have finally identified wartime 'Man Who Never Was' - Telegraph
    As is so often the case, the Telegraph is first with the news - years after it was first reported
    Tomorrow they have some sad news about a ship hitting an iceberg

    Steve

  8. #8
    Senior Member Country: Great Britain Mervyn2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Crook View Post
    As is so often the case, the Telegraph is first with the news - years after it was first reported
    Tomorrow they have some sad news about a ship hitting an iceberg

    Steve
    Ah, but their interactive, pull-out special about a doomed airship will be worth waiting for...

    The Operation Mincemeat programme does look interesting though. Can someone now write another book about the Berlin Wall? I'd love a new programme to be made on that subject...
    Last edited by Mervyn2; 05-12-10 at 02:18 PM.

  9. #9
    Administrator Country: Wales Steve Crook's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mervyn2 View Post
    Ah, but their interactive, pull-out special about a doomed airship will be worth waiting for...
    I got one of those - but it burst into flames
    "Oh the humanity"

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YDU2MWJwJDc

    Steve

  10. #10
    Senior Member Country: Great Britain Mervyn2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Crook View Post
    I got one of those - but it burst into flames
    "Oh the humanity" Steve
    Oh the humanity indeed! How could you?

    I got that one too, but it wasn't a patch on my pop-up version - even if it did mess the carpet...

    Truly terrific commentary though - unforgettable.
    Last edited by Mervyn2; 05-12-10 at 03:27 PM.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Country: UK Dadwasinflame's Avatar
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    Been told the book is excellent, been meaning to pick it up for a wile but not got round to it so far, but lookin forward to seeing this , but i doubt it will be a patch on the book

    oops forgot to say its on BEEB2 at 9pm tonight

  12. #12
    Administrator Country: Wales Steve Crook's Avatar
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    Interesting, but did they tell the whole story?

    There was a book called "The Secrets of HMS Dasher" published in 2002 which put forward the idea that they actually used a corpse from HMS Dasher which was destroyed in an explosion in the Firth of Clyde shortly before the mission was put into effect. This documentary mentioned that Glyndwr's body had been on ice for 2 months and that his feet were frozen solid. That might have been too long and it might have started to decay in other ways.

    Using a corpse from the Dasher would also explain the trip to Scotland. There were plenty of submarines based at Portsmouth. The drive to Scotland always was a bit of a puzzle

    But a pretty good documentary and it was nice that they were able to interview the real "Pam" as well as Montagu's assistant and his nephew

    Steve

  13. #13
    Senior Member Country: England Santonix's Avatar
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    I remember seeing and recording a documentary on this subject narrated by Robert Powell, some years ago on what was then The History Channel on Freeview. In it, it was claimed that Michael's body had deteriorated and that it was replaced at the last moment by another corpse, it was all very fascinating and I watched it twice before deleting it. A couple of weeks later I saw the same documentary again, but this time the section regarding the body being replaced at the last moment had been edited out. I wish I had kept the recording.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Country: UK
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    I thought that it was an excellant documentary.However i would disagree with the claims that it changed the course of the war.It undoubtedly saved many casualties.however bearing in mond that Italy became very much a sideshow i think that those claims were exagerated.I would have thought Operation fortitude the creation of a fictitious army group in East anglia was by far and away the most important deception of the war.Because the notional head the Germans took it hook line and sinker without any qualifications.This was because they knew that patton was a top General and they could not imagine an invasion without him.

  15. #15
    Administrator Country: Wales Steve Crook's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by orpheum2 View Post
    I thought that it was an excellant documentary.However i would disagree with the claims that it changed the course of the war.It undoubtedly saved many casualties.however bearing in mond that Italy became very much a sideshow i think that those claims were exagerated.I would have thought Operation fortitude the creation of a fictitious army group in East anglia was by far and away the most important deception of the war.Because the notional head the Germans took it hook line and sinker without any qualifications.This was because they knew that patton was a top General and they could not imagine an invasion without him.
    Well it certainly changed the course of the war. But by how much?

    Steve

  16. #16
    Senior Member Country: UK didi-5's Avatar
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    We've just watched 'The Man Who Never Was'. I've seen it many times but Mr Didi hadn't. The documentary was interesting too.

  17. #17
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    I went to the National archives at Kew as i have a readers ticket.I took out some of the OM files.I found one piece of information not mentioned in the programme nor i think in the book.When the body was looked at they found a bill that had been planted which was just 3 days old.However the pathologist took the view that the body had been in the water for 5-8 days.However they came to the fortunate conclusion that advers weather conditions had contributed to the rapid decomposition of the body.rather fortunate that.
    Ribbentrop the Nazi foreign minister claimed that he suspected that it was a subterfuge,although that was after the event.Also the Allies were aware that the Nazis must know that they were going to invade Sardinia but they made out that this in fact was a feint although the main thrst would be Greece.
    Also i got out trhe file of BIP Ltd.Till 1933 their official company name was United Motion Pictures Ltd.
    Also the file of Victor Saville Ltd.This was a joint venture between Saville and Michael Balcon.It was founded in 1921 and went bust in 1927.The following year of course they founded Gainsborough Pictures(1928)Ltd.

  18. #18
    Senior Member Country: UK
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    Watched the repeat last night, was very impressed with the girls who had worked in MI5, not a bad hours telly

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