Synopses & Reviews
Princeton grad Erasmus Kloman was undergoing Army training at Fort Bragg in 1943 when, due to his passing knowledge of French, he was interviewed for potential involvement in "a highly confidential activity." The interview culminated in the question, "Would you be willing to volunteer for hazardous duty behind enemy lines?" He signed up for duty with the newly formed Office of Strategic Services (OSS) and after an intensive period of training in various aspects of espionage, found himself on assignment in wartime Cairo, Algiers, and then Caserta. At age 24 with the title of OSS Acting Chief of Operations in the Mediterranean Theater of Operations, he helped organize and coordinate the actions of Operational Groups (OGs), which infiltrated Italy and occupied France on daring sabotage missions. The OG teams were assigned to cut and harass enemy lines of communication, to attack vital enemy installations, to organize and train local resistance elements, and to furnish intelligence to the Allied forces. Kloman's account of his experience coupled with his extensive research of declassified documents provides an inside view of the "shadow war" within the larger conflagration of World War II. Colorful imagery and photographs enliven a narrative that will appeal to everyone interested in true spy stories.