This dramatic expose of Allied subterfuge and betrayal uncovers the treachery of undercover fascists and American Nazi spy rings during the height of World War II.
Between 1939 and 1945, more than seventy Allied men and women were convicted—mostly in secret trials—of working to help Nazi Germany win the war. In the same period, hundreds of British Fascists were also interned without trial on specific and detailed evidence that they were spying for, or working on behalf of, Germany. Collectively, these men and women were part of a little-known Fifth Column: traitors who committed crimes including espionage, sabotage, communicating with enemy intelligence agents and attempting to cause disaffection amongst Allied troops.
Hundreds of official files, released piecemeal and in remarkably haphazard fashion in the years between 2002 and 2017, reveal the truth about the Allied men and women who formed these spy rings. Several were part of international espionage rings based in the United States.
If these men and women were, for the most part, lone wolves or members of small networks, others were much more dangerous. In 1940, during some of the darkest days of the war, two well-connected British Nazi sympathizers planned overlapping conspiracies to bring about a "fascist revolution." These plots were foiled by Allied spymasters through radical—and often contentious—methods of investigation.