Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Sleede took his measures: silently, as was his way. He vanished one day in search of a rare component of Damascus ink that was believed to induce erotic needs in the user and thus, when palmed on some lascivious Abwehr agent, to weaken willpower and concentration. Sleede was next heard of having left Beirut in a caique for the distant island of Crete, a destination now within our network of clandestine communication. Back in Cairo malicious tongues inevitably wagged. Fresh jealousies were aired. A squalid spy from another organisation even claimed that the bottles, when analysed in Sleede’s absence, were found to contain no more than coloured water.

Basil Davidson on SOE, LRB

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