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The Griffin: The Greatest Untold Espionage Story of World War II Hardcover – October 1, 1986


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 294 pages
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin; 1st edition (October 1986)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0395363187
  • ISBN-13: 978-0395363188
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 6 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,084,478 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

"Griffin" was the code name for a man the author believes was the British Secret Service's most important spy in World War II. Paul Rosbaud was the editor of Nazi Germany's leading scientific periodical and probably more fully informed about overall war-related scientific developments there than anyone. Kramish, a scientist who has served on the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission, maintains that Rosbaud, through his spymaster Eric Welsh, passed valuable information on jet aircraft, radar, V-1 and V-2 rockets, and the efforts of German scientists to develop the first atomic bomb. The most significant contention in the book is that the Germans did not come close to developing the first atomic bomb, as has been generally supposed. Kramish also reveals that Rosbaud was the author of the 1939 "Oslo Report," a detailed description of German arms and technology, at first assumed even by the British government to be a hoax. Photos.
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By wdgardne@shore.net on January 6, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Paul Rosbaud, the subject of this biography, was truly an enigma wrapped in a puzzle: The top science editor in wartime Germany -- a very prestigious position at that time -- Rosbaud secretly informed the Allies of Nazi scientists' work, particularly in rocket propulsion and in atomic weapons. Rosbaud made frequent trips during the war to Sweden and Switzerland and passed on the secrets to Allied contacts. Author Kramish has done a fine job in digging out the background of this fascinating story and readers will come away with the feeling that the Allied governments of the time -- and of this day possibly -- never wanted Rosbaud's story to be told. One problem is that Rosbaud certainly informed his Allied contacts that the Germans had no serious atomic bomb effort underway. The problem -- which persists to this day -- is that the Allies, primarily the U.S. and the U.K. maintained that they had to build atomic weapons because they claimed they feared the Germans were building the terrible weapons. So, if the Germans had no serious atomic projects underway, as was the case and the Allies knew that, why did the Allies make the bomb? It's a story that hasn't been answered more than a half-decade after Hiroshima and Nagasaki. At any rate, Kramish has a fascinating tale to tell here and if his writing style is somewhat pedantic at times, the material is so interesting that the story overcomes the style.
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