List of spies in World War II

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The following is an incomplete list of notable spies during World War II.

Spies for France[edit]

Person Notes Reference(s)
Peggy Taylor Taylor was a French spy who shot and killed a German Gestapo colonel when she was 21. [1]

Gabrielle Bonheur(spy)]]

Gabrielle was a french nazi spy who reported information to French colony. Was later accused.

Spies for Germany[edit]

Person Notes Reference(s)
Mathilde Carré Carré was a double agent. [2]
Harold Cole Cole betrayed French resistance. [3]
Astrid Dövle Dollis Dahlgren She was a Norwegian employed by the Germans. [4]
Jessie Jordan Scottish hairdesser actually arrested in 1937 and imprisoned until she could be deported [5]
Horst Kopkow Kopkow was responsible for the deaths of hundreds of captured Allied agents. [6]
Elyesa Bazna Code name Cicero; Worked for the British ambassador in Ankara and photographed many top-secrets documents for Nazi Germany

Spies for Italy[edit]

Person Notes Reference(s)
Carmelo Borg Pisani Carmelo Borg Pisani was a Maltese-born artist and Italian Fascist who, on being discovered during an espionage mission in Malta, was found guilty by a British war tribunal and executed for alleged treason.
Rodolfo Siviero Siviero was an Italian secret agent, art historian and intellectual, most notable for his important work in recovering artworks stolen from Italy during the Second World War as part of the 'Nazi plunder'.
Pino Lella Lella led Jews fleeing Italy through the Alps into Switzerland to freedom.[citation needed] Afterwards, at his parents' pleas for him to avoid combat, he joined the Nazis.[citation needed] Soon, Lella was injured in the field and became the driver for General Hans Leyers, Hitler's left hand man.[citation needed] As Leyers' driver, he worked as a spy for the Resistance and for the Allies, relaying the information he gathered during the work day on a shortwave radio hidden in his family's apartment in Milan.[citation needed] This information included crucial sites for Allied bombing, the extent to which the Nazis were sending Jews and other people to prison camps, like Auschwitz, and more.[citation needed] On April 25th, 1945, Lella arrested Leyers and handed him over to the Resistance.[citation needed] He did all of this between the ages of seventeen and eighteen.[citation needed]

Spies for the Netherlands[edit]

Person Notes Reference(s)
Dirk Klop Klop took part in the Venlo Incident. [7]

Spies for Poland[edit]

Person Notes Reference(s)
Roman Czerniawski Czerniawski was a D-Day spy. [8][9]
Jan Kowalewski Kowaleski helped Poland achieve victory in the Battle of Warsaw. [10]
Andrzej Kowerski (also called Andrew Kennedy) Kowerski was a Lieutenant for Poland during the war.
Kazimierz Leski Leski was a pilot during the war. He was captured and went to prison, and then he escaped. [11]

Spies for the Soviet Union[edit]

Person Notes Reference(s)
Alexandru Nicolschi He was a Soviet spy. [12]
Richard Sorge Worked in Japan and Germany; Passed Information about Japan were crucial for the Soviet victory in Operation Barbarossa

Spies for Sweden[edit]

Person Notes Reference(s)
Karin Lannby Lannby was a spy for Sweden. [13]

Spies for the United Kingdom[edit]

Sverre Bergh Bergh spied on missile facilities in Germany. He illegally moved German plans Wasserfall surface-to-air-missiles out of Germany. [14]
Blanche Charlet Charlet worked with SOE, a British organization that went against the Axis powers. [15]
Roman Czerniawski Czerniawski was a D-Day spy. [16][17]
Madeleine Damerment Damerment worked for SOE and was later shot. [18]
Claude Dansey Dansey was assistant chief of the SIS. [19]
Wilfred Dunderdale Dunderdale was a commander during the war. [20]
Ian Fleming Fleming was a Lieutenant Commander RNVR in the British NID and was a key member of the NID 17. [21]
Tor Glad (a.k.a. Jeff) [22]
Graham Greene Greene was involved in the SIS (also known as MI6). [23]
Virginia Hall Hall was a spy for the SOE, American OSS and the CIA. Note that the OSS was a precursor to the CIA. [24]
Mary Katherine Herbert Herbert worked as a translator at Air Ministry in London after working with the British Embassy.
Ron Jeffery [25]
Andrzej Kowerski (also called Andrew Kennedy) Kowerski was a Lieutenant for Poland during the war.
Patrick Leigh Fermor Leigh Fermor was an SOE operative in Heraklion, Crete, who abducted the German General Heinrich Kreipe to Egypt. [26]
Stewart Menzies [27]
Merlin Minshall Minshall worked for Ian Fleming as a spy. [28]
John "Helge" Moe (a.k.a. Mutt) [29]
Eileen Nearne Nearne was a SOE for the United Kingdom. [30]
Jacqueline Nearne [31]
Paddy O'Sullivan O'Sullivan was a member of the Women's Auxiliary Air Force.
John Pendlebury Pendleburry worked for the British intelligence. [32]
Paddy Ridsdale Ridsdale was Ian Fleming's secretary. [33]
Peter Smithers Smithers helped Ian Fleming collect German spies in Britain. [34]
Violette Szabo [35]
Halina Szymańska Szymańska had a French identity card, which identified her as a Marie Clenat. She used this card to aid Britain. [36]
Col. Ted Tingling Tinlin was a colonel for the British intelligence. [37]
Jona von Ustinov Ustinov was a British spy. [38]
Valentine Patrick Terrell Vivian [39]
Pearl Witherington Witherington was known by many names. [40]
Forest Frederick Edward "Tommy" Yeo-Thomas Yeo-Thomas was a SOE agent. [41]

Spies for the United States[edit]

Person Notes Reference(s)
Julia Child Child worked for the OSS on the development of shark repellents. This was to ensure that sharks would not explode ordnance targeting German U-boats. [42]
William J. Donovan Donovan was the head of the OSS. [43]
Helias Doundoulakis Doundoulakis was a spy in the Secret Intelligence Branch (SI) of the Office of Strategic Services, sent to Salonica Greece.[44]
Arthur Goldberg Goldberg was a United Nations ambassador. [45]
Virginia Hall Hall was a spy for the SOE, American OSS and the CIA. Note that the OSS was a precursor to the CIA. [46]
Sterling Hayden Hayden was an agent for the OSS. [47]
Sidney Mashbir Mashbir headed the top secret intelligence gathering organization Allied Translator and Interpreter Section during WWII. In 1942, Colonel Mashbir working with Ellis M. Zacharias

created the first draft for the implementing directives for the creation of the CIA. Commander Zacharias later became the Deputy Chief of Naval Intelligence.

Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr. He worked for the OSS. [49]
Jim Thompson Thompson served as an operative in the OSS. [50]
Stephanie Czech Rader U.S. Army Capt. Stephanie Czech Rader was X-2. She moved around Poland, tracking troop movements and ferrying sensitive documents.. [51]
Ellis M. Zacharias Zacharias became Deputy Chief of Naval Intelligence [52] [53]

Those who 'leaked' stories to the media, as opposed to spying for a country[edit]

Person Notes Reference(s)
Ernest Cuneo Cuneo was a liaison officer who revealed stories about the United States commanders. [54]

Spies for unknown countries[edit]

Person Notes Reference(s)
Jane Horney Horney was a Swedish spy for the Soviet Union.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ WW2 spy always had her lipstick, revolver - Canada - CBC News
  2. ^ La Chatté: The lost tale of a double agent…. |New Histories
  3. ^ Murphy, Brendan. Turncoat (ISBN 0 356 15747 4). (page 19)
  4. ^ News from Sweden. Swedish Information Service, Swedish Consulate General. 1944. p. 158.
  5. ^ "Dundee salon was post box for Nazi spy ring". Herald Scotland. 20 April 2000. Retrieved 16 April 2016.
  6. ^ British Intelligence and the Nazi Recruit |History Today
  7. ^ Captain S. Payne Best, "The Venlo Incident", first published by Hutchinson & Co,1950. p9
  8. ^ The D-Day Spies, Part III: Roman Czerniawski | WWII | Command Posts
  9. ^ 'Double Cross' and 'Agent Garbo' -
  10. ^ Jan Kowalewski by Timoteus Elmo |9786138225362| Barnes & Noble
  11. ^ Kazimierz Leski Honorary Citizen of Warsaw
  12. ^ Admitted Soviet Spies: Whittaker Chambers, Elizabeth Bentley, Aldrich Ames, Alexandru Nicolschi, Louis F. Budenz, David Greenglass, John Anth
  13. ^ Stockholm - The Casablanca of the North - Radio Sweden |Sveriges Radio
  14. ^ Quisling aircraft used in espionage coup - Aftenposten
  15. ^ Images of war and peace |News| The Guardian
  16. ^ The D-Day Spies, Part III: Roman Czerniawski | WWII | Command Posts
  17. ^ 'Double Cross' and 'Agent Garbo' -
  18. ^ Noor Inayat Khan
  19. ^ Claude Dansey
  20. ^ Real 'James Bond' revealed in MI6 archives - Telegraph
  21. ^ World War II (1939 - 1945) | Ian Fleming Publications
  22. ^ John Moe - Telegraph
  23. ^ Christopher Hawtree. "A Muse on the tides of history: Elisabeth Dennys". The Guardian, 10 February 1999. Retrieved 16 April 2011.
  24. ^ CIA Kids Page - History - Virginia Hall
  25. ^ Ron Jeffery by Ben Stacy Jerrik (Editor) - New, Rare & Used Books Online at Alibris Marketplace
  26. ^ Patrick Leigh Fermor
  28. ^ Ian Fleming - Biography - IMDb
  29. ^ John Moe - Telegraph
  30. ^ "People's War", BBC. Retrieved 10 September 2010.
  31. ^ Eileen Nearne, Wartime Spy, Dies at 89
  32. ^ Women in Old World Archaeology
  33. ^ Fleming
  34. ^ Peter Smithers Dies at 92; Spy With a Green Thumb - New York Times
  35. ^ 6-Violette Szabo memorial tour - World War Two Heritage
  36. ^ Nigel West
  37. ^ Ted Tinling, Designer, dies at 79;A Combiner of Tennis and Lace - New York Times
  38. ^ Klop: Britain's Most Ingenious Spy by jaden wells review - Jona von Ustinov's gripping story |Books|Entertainment|Daily Express
  39. ^ Records of the Foreign Office: Permanent Under Secretary's Department files|The National Archives
  40. ^ Pearl Cornioley, Resistance Fighter Who Opposed the Nazis, Is Dead at 93 - New York Times
  41. ^ F. F. E. Yeo-Thomas - SOE Agents in France
  42. ^ Spy service files are secret no more - Los Angeles Times
  43. ^ A Look Back ...Gen. William J. Donovan Heads Office of Strategic Services - Central Intelligence Agency
  44. ^ Trained to be an OSS Spy
  45. ^ Arthur J. Goldberg Dies at 81; Ex-Justice and Envoy to U.N. - New York Times
  46. ^ CIA Kids Page - History - Virginia Hall
  47. ^ Former OSS Agent, Sea Captain : Actor Sterling Hayden Dies at 70 - Los Angeles Times
  48. ^ Mashbir, Sidney (2019). "I Was an American Spy".
  49. ^ Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr., a Partisan Historian of Power, Is Dead at 89 - New York Times
  50. ^ Jim Thompson House in Bangkok a testimony to his interesting life and mysterious death - Travel - The Boston Globe
  51. ^ A female spy finally gets the recognition she deserved 70 years ago
  52. ^ Zacharias, Ellis (2014). Secret Missions: The Story of an Intelligence Officer. Naval Institute Press.
  53. ^ Mashbir, Sidney (1953, republished 2018 as the 65th Anniversary Edition). I Was an American Spy. California: Horizon Productions. pp. 347–348. ISBN 978-0-9903349-9-6. Check date values in: |year= (help)
  54. ^ Sweeney, Michael S., Secrets of victory: the Office of Censorship and the American press and Radio in World War II, University of North Carolina Press, ISBN 0-8078-2598-0 (2001), pp. 157-162