Cautious Beginnings: Canadian Foreign Intelligence, 1939-51 by Kurt F. Jensen

By Kurt F. Jensen

Kurt F. Jensen argues that Canada was once a extra energetic intelligence associate in the Second global War alliance than has formerly been recommended. He describes Canada’s contributions to Allied intelligence earlier than the battle all started, in addition to the enormously Canadian actions that begun from that time. He finds how the govt created an intelligence association throughout the struggle to help Allied assets. it is a convincing portrait of a kingdom with an energetic position in moment global battle intelligence accumulating, one who keeps to persuade the structure of its present features.  

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64 However, there was obviously ongoing intelligence liaison work with the British, as had been the case for many years. Contacts existed between the Canadian High Commission in London and the British Secret Intelligence Service. This was a one-way relationship, providing Canada with intelligence that had been interpreted through the eyes of Britain. Prior to the outbreak of war, the flow of intelligence was of little direct benefit to Canadian decision makers, who maintained very narrow foreign policy interests.

No independent sources of information were available to test and corroborate information made available through diplomatic sources. Canada did not have a foreign intelligence service to ferret out the shards of information that could confirm or deny reports that became available through other means. Nor did Canada have an intelligence resource to provide contextual knowledge to information already obtained through more accessible means. Although Canada’s reliance on Britain’s Secret Intelligence Service (more popularly known as MI6) and the Government Code and Cipher School (Britain’s SIGINT service) proved valuable, these were not a substitute for an independent Canadian source of information.

Stone, the officer at External Affairs charged with foreign intelligence matters, to discuss the possibility of External Affairs establishing a cryptographic unit. That the relatively junior Drake and Little took this The Birth of the Examination Unit initiative without the knowledge or consent of their superior officers (who likely would have denied them the authority to proceed) was a very serious matter in the midst of a war. 5 Nothing is known of Drake’s motivation for speaking with the DEA about the DND’s decision to reject the proposal for a cryptographic unit.

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